A Visit From My Former Self, Much Gratitude, and a Birthday Present for You

It was a Friday at 11PM and I looked up from my screen.

Breathing in, I stretched. My back creaked.

The page was finished, proofed and sent.

Weekend was around the corner.

Except, I had no plans. Not for the Friday evening, not for the rest of the weekend.

It was going to be Youtube till bedtime, and work the rest of the weekend.

Same as every week.

I was alone, in a town I didn’t like, and aside from the Chinese guy at the cornershop, I hadn’t spoken to anyone in over a week

And it had been like this for months.

It seemed all I did was work.

No: All I actually did was work.

Except for when my girlfriend would be over from England – and even then I spent more time with clients than with her.

I sat back and wondered how the hell I had ended up like this.

I felt sorry for myself

It had been a year since I started as a copywriter, and at first it had been fun. Impoverished, but fun.

Now I was in better straits, but there wasn’t much fun in it.

In this town, I hadn’t made any friends – couldn’t because I was always working. Even my nights out would be for networking – and it ain’t easy to make real friends at a Tweetup.

My mind wondered through the previous year – the clients I’d had and the things I’d learned.

And all the fun that I hadn’t had.

At that point, I was ready to take my self-pity and turn it into a good ‘n solid depression.

But suddenly, something woke up in me

A memory, a choice I’d made – suddenly the moment came back to me clear as day.

It was as if I’d locked away a facet of Martin a year back, and he’d suddenly broken out.

And in my head, he spoke:

“Do you remember, Martin, that you chose this?

That, one year ago when you got your first few clients, you told yourself you’re going sit here and hole yourself up and get serious about this?

You decided – PROMISED yourself that you’d learn till year head bursts, write till your fingers are numb – and turn this copywriting gig into an actual business?”

 

My mind reeled.

It truly was like I had disappeared, even from myself

Like a frigging hermit in a cave. I’d even gone back to wearing my monk robe in the winter because I didn’t have heating (and man those rags are comfortable).

Suddenly the shroud was lifted, and I saw myself from a different perspective: A guy who had gotten into trouble, who had made a decision, and had gotten the hell down to work.

A guy who had just sacrificed a year of his life, in terms of social and emotional activities and experiences, and who had invested that sacrifice in advancing his life situation.

Successfully, apparently.

 

To this day I don’t know how I managed to push on for so long, feeling increasingly isolated and unhappy – while completely forgetting that I’d actually decided to do this.

But I’d done it, and it had been worth it. I’d build something that wasn’t finished or stable yet, but at least it was a base I could use as a starting point for more serious growth.

My reverie ended with a big smile, and a profound sense of gratitude for the way I had been a year ago, and for the decision that this ‘other Martin’ had made for me.

I put on my shoes, grabbed a modest bucket of red paint, and headed into town.

 

###

Now: yesterday I promised you a freebie – sorry I didn’t send it yet. The night took an unexpected turn and I couldn’t send, so here:

For subscribers, and because yesterday was my B-Day, I’m giving you a free, no obligation mini review of one of your pages.

Just send me the URL of your most important page (or the one most in need of help) and I’ll cast the stellar gaze over it etc etc.

This is a condensed version of the copy reviews that normally cost money etc, but if I spend 20 minutes on your page, it costs me very little and you are without any doubt going to get some tips that’ll help your business.

And you know, it’s free. You can’t lose :) Happy Martin’s birthday.

 

Cheers,

 

Some former-but-apparently-not-quite-ex-monk.

 

Quick Question, do me a Favor?

Are you on Twitter at all?

I used to have tons of fun on there, a few years ago.

If you think I’m nuts in these emails, Twitter was where I’d really let my hair down.

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Presenting: Your Inner Stoic. I Suggest You Two Become Good Friends

A wise man I know once said: “Life is about learning how to be at ease with things that aren’t easy”.
That line by itself has kept me going through some very difficult phases in my life.
I’ve discovered the truth in it, which is that ‘easy’ is a matter of perception.
And you as well as I, we can choose how we perceive things.
When we change our perception, that what is difficult becomes different: easy, bearable, temporary, a nuisance, or a fact of life – it changes.

I want to share my own best shift of perception, hoping it’ll help you too when times are tough.
Because perception or not, life tends to throw obstacles at us.
How we deal with them, that’s what matters.
Here’s how I deal with things in my own life: I talk to my inner stoic.
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When You See a Good Thing… Grab That Sucker. No, Really

A few years ago when I ran my fancy-pantsy tailoring company, I was visiting my then-girlfriend in Poland.

One of her parents’ friends was a retired tailor, and when he heard that a young enthusiast was doing the thing he loved so much, his daughter called to say he wanted to meet me.

I don’t remember why, but we didn’t set up a meeting that week. I figured I’d be back next month, better to meet him then.

When I returned a month later, he had sadly passed away.

And I had lost the chance to meet a true nestor of my trade.

Who had reached out, wanting to meet me.

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How to Double, Triple or Quadruple Your Writing Speed – Today!

I had a guest post go live on Firepolemarketing last week, and it seemed to be a massive solution to quite a few people.

If you joined my list after reading that post, this message is no news for you.

But if you signed up any time before that post went live, you might have missed it.

And if you write content as part of your business, and if you want to write faster, you want to read this piece. Believe me.

Find it here: http://www.firepolemarketing.com/writing-speed/

So this email holds no salespitch – just one request: after reading, would you please share it around on social media?

Thank you.

Martin

"…and Then the Whale Blew Up in My Face", Said the Man

Of course the whale blew up: he frigging put dynamite in the poor thing.

Same thing happens in oh-so-many businesses: “Let’s try this thing, that will definitely solve our problem!”

 

BANG…….

True story:

In 1970, a whale ended up beached in Oregon.

Whales smell bad. Really bad. Especially if you let them sit dead on a beach for a week.

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Get Rid of That Search Form Already

Today it’s going to be a real short one.

There’s one mistake I see a lot, and it’s real bad for business.

I’m talking about the search box that many people have on their site.

Usually in the top right corner somewhere.

That’s such a pity, because it’s Continue Reading

Freelancers, Entrepreneurs, Artists Creatives and Artisans: Put Down Your Tools and Back Away From Work

Entrepreneurs and freelancers often think that putting in more hours equals getting more done.

They couldn’t be more wrong. Instead of pushing through into the small hours, I state that you should all shut down daily at the same hour.

Here’s why:

I’m sure you’ve had the experience: A long day ahead with lots to finish.

You’re looking at a working day of at least eight hours, probably ten.

IF all goes well.

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Sales Psychology: How I Finally Got My Grandmother Online

They say that the best way to get a sale is to know what people need and then show them how to get it.

I had the good fortune to experience this for myself.

Helen is an English lady who lives here in town. She’s in her 80’s, and while her body is failing her mind certainly isn’t.

She had written a book but she needed an editor, and she asked me to help.

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Why High Heels Make Your Business Look Like a Cow

It’s summer in Europe, and that means fancy dress here in Spain.

After being stuck inside all winter, people really grab the opportunity to go out once summer is in full swing.

They party, they meet with friends and go to concerts, and I can tell you the Spanish sure like to look good while they’re at it.

So we see silk shirts, laced dresses, lots of makeup, and hairdos that must have cost a small fortune.

And we see high heels. Really high heels.

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