How to avoid instant overwhelm & the paralysis of analysis.

Today I’ll help you avoid a fatal mistake that destroys your shot at building a business—before you even start.

Here’s where most newbie entrepreneurs go wrong in their approach to starting a business:

STEP 1: They think to themselves hmm… ”What business ideas are hot right now?”

STEP 2: They hit up Google and begin reading blog posts from, Business Insider and Seth Godin about the best new business ideas.

STEP 3: Eureka! They discover a new business trend with TONS of potential: [insert: drop-shipping, creating an online course, hacking, and so on...]

STEP 4: They begin planning how fast this business could take off.

“If I could get 1,000 clicks every day from Facebook… and convert that traffic at a conservative 5%, I would have 10,000 customers in 6 months… Holy crap, watch out Zuckerberg!”

STEP 5: Buy the “magic-bullet” course or book on the topic. You know the ones. The giveaway is usually in the title.

STEP 6: Consume the product and realize there’s actually work required to get this business off the ground. “Wait… I need to do WHAT?”

All of a sudden, the business model goes from looking like this:

To looking more like this...

  • Writing articles
  • Building products
  • Creating eBooks & physical books
  • Creating Audio & Video
  • Creating software
  • Creating content pages for SEO
  • Creating graphics
  • Creating list management
  • Segmenting
  • Creating merchant accounts
  • Paying affiliates
  • Accounts payable
  • Vendor sourcing
  • Creating budgets
  • Paying taxes
  • Software development
  • Site maintenance
  • Sales pages
  • Order forms
  • Getting email subscribers
  • Opt-in forms
  • Link buying
  • Getting featured in publications
  • Link building
  • JV recruitment
  • Pay-per-click & Facebook Ads


STEP 7: Give up… Until the next “shiny-object” business model bursts onto the scene.

Rinse. Wash. Repeat.

There are a lot of things wrong with the process above. Let me start at the top.

1.  Chasing hot, new “business ideas” -- without any focus on solving problems for people

2.  Starting a business without taking into account your unique interests and skillset

3.  Being tempted by quick and easy “riches”

And the biggest problem of all: Not taking action and implementing nothing.

90% of people screw up right here.

They do nothing with the information they consume.

They become infatuated with the business idea and earning potential… but never get started.

Most of us have been taught we need to start a Facebook/Amazon/Google-sized business from the get-go.

We’ve been taught that our business needs to be able to earn $10 Million+ in 12-24 months.

The harsh truth is: Most of us have the wrong definition of business success. That’s probably because most of us have never run the numbers.

What if you had an extra $20k?

Let’s break down what it would be like if you were earning an extra $20,000 with your business.

That comes out to $1667/ month. That’s 3 people paying you ~$500/month for coaching. Or 30 sales of a $60 product per month.

If you can land one coaching client or do $60/day… then you have everything you need to scale up to $20,000 per year—without even quitting your day job.

What could you do with an extra $1,600 coming every month?

  •  You could pay off your student loan debt 3x faster

  •  You could buy the new iPhone when it comes out, instead of waiting for your next upgrade cycle 2 years from now

  •  You could set aside money into investments, save for a home or start preparing for your kid's college tuition

  •  You could pay for your parents to come visit you and treat them to an amazing time

Or you might try this...

This is the Constance Moofushi in Maldives.

It was voted 1 of the the 10 most luxurious all-inclusive resorts in the world.

The ocean is crystal clear. Private villas line the ocean.

Every day finishes the way it starts: with an orange sun rising and falling in the distance.

The beaches are white & empty. And the happiness of the locals is contagious.

A couple of weeks ago, I was reading about this little piece of paradise and I got curious, “How much would it be to actually go there?”

What I found kind of blew my mind.


$2,155 to get a room for a week. And $2,630 for the most expensive plane ticket I could find.

In other words, you only need to earn $5,000 to cover an all-expense paid trip to one of the most luxurious all-inclusive resorts in the world. That’s it.

If you were earning $20,000 more per year, you could do that 4 times.

I think most people’s perception of how attainable the “perfect lifestyle” is way out of whack.

If for you, bliss involves swinging in a hammock while the ocean swooshes gently onto a white-sand beach nearby… then perhaps 4 trips a year to the world’s most luxurious all-inclusive resorts will suit you.

Understand, I’m not trying to convince you to take next week off and buy an expensive ticket to an island in east Asia (unless you want to, it’d probably be fun)…

I’m simply using the luxury resort as an illustration of what’s possible… for a lot less money than you might expect… and how having a business can get you there much sooner than you think.

My aim is to reframe your perception of success.

And then show you how easy it is to create a business that allows you to get those results.

Your “Maldives” may be taking a week off to hike the peak of Mount Hood, Oregon… or boating on Lake Como, Italy for the summer… even relaxing in Fiji. Whatever.

The majority of westerners are killing themselves in 9-5 jobs that they hate.

Why? Because they think that’s what they need to do to survive the shit that “life” dishes up to them.

Now that you’ve seen a taste of what success could look like for you.

I want you to get crystal clear on two things before moving forward: your “What?” and your “Why?”

WHAT is your goal for starting a business?

  •  Is your goal to pay off debt and make a side income?

  •  Is your goal to earn enough through your business that you can quit your day job?

  •  Is your goal to take a sweet vacation with your wife?

Once you get clear on that, I want to know...

WHY do you want that?

  •  Do you want to quit your job and make $10k per month so you can be happier, focus on clients you enjoy and have the freedom to travel with your family?

  •  Do you want to start a business because your mom told you that you never would and you want to prove her wrong?

  •  Do you want to launch your first app because you love programming and want to finally ship an actual product?

There are a lot of things that will affect you ability to accomplish these things.

But the starting point is NOT getting off track (and trying to consume more information).

It IS getting crystal clear on your WHAT and WHY.



P.S. Really. Stop reading. Write your answers down to your “WHAT” and your “WHY” right now in the comments below.

Close your other browser tabs, exit out of Facebook, silence your phone—and before you read anything else, spend five minutes or fives hours answering these 2 questions for yourself.

There are no right or wrong answers. Write quickly. Don’t edit too much. Don’t analyze yourself as you make your list. Write everything down, even if it sounds foolish.

Your answers don’t have to be definitive. They will change over time. That’s okay.

In fact, some will change by the the time you finish this email series. But it’s important to write them down now.

Stop reading. Don't worry about other people's answers. What you are about to write is infinitely more important than anything else I have to say.

50 responses to “Instant Overwhelm and the Paralysis of Analysis”

  1. What ?
    I want to work at my own convenient time without having people to disrespect or abuse me when anything goes wrong or when there is a mistake somewhere. I want to have financial freedom, in terms of accommodation. I have also noticed something in this life, most people that works under people cannot be richer that who they are working for unknowingly they might be more intelligent and outstanding than their employer.

    Why ?.
    I came from the ghetto and I always wanted to stand out , I have been doing petty business back in my hood all I know is sell used phones and I bake some confectioneries to meet my end but I always believe I can make more if I am focused. I would do anything to improve my website to get more sales and become a man of myself.

  2. What I want to do is splurge on grandkids, take mini vacations with hubby, and pay down debt. Why I want to start a business is so I can work from home.

  3. What is my goal for starting a business?
    Right now, my main “What” is; I want my own business so that I can quit this life draining office job. So that I can start surrounding myself with successful, joyful people. This office crowd is just plain sad. The people I work with, who have sat at a desk for 30 years (or more), are miserable. The lives that they have lead are seemingly meaningless. They have never questioned if there was more out there for them, and if they have, those dreams have died inside of them because they settled for this routine, this way of life.
    I just simply know, that I was meant to do more with my time. So my goal, is to be able to be financially stable with side business income, within the next two years, so that I can leave this desk job for a life of fulfillment and meaning and happiness.

    Why do you want that?
    FREEDOM! I have two small kids. When one of them has a cold I have to walk into my bosses office, explain that my kiddo is sick and ask “may I please put in for some personal time”, so that I can leave work and go pick them up from daycare. I am paid salary and that is not what I should have to use my vacation time for. I want my own business so that I don’t have to worry about how many personal days I have left, to make it to the next year. I want my own business so I can have the freedom to leave work at 3PM, and go pick them up when they get out of school in two years. Freedom to go to their practices, extra curricular activities and pep rally’s, and not miss out on those things because I am sitting at a desk staring at computer screens. So currently, that is my motivation. Then if with that freedom comes additional financial opportunities, to be able to take awesome vacations and create memories with my family, pay for their first cars and college, then that would be an extraordinary bonus.

  4. What………
    I want to earn enough from a job I love, pay off my debts, and be able to enjoy my family. I have almost become an absentee parent and sadly being nick named Madam work because my job always comes first since I can’t afford to loose the salary. I want that to change.

    I want to be happy and live long, eat healthy foods, have the freedom to be a parent, be with the family and earn enough to travel around.

  5. What…..
    I want to work hard for myself, not hard for others. It would be nice to have my own hours and not clocking in to work 9-5 for a company.

    I want to prove to myself I’m capable of becoming a business owner with a lot of hard work. Spend more time with my kids.

  6. Thanks for this and and the other posts so far in this series, Ryan. They are definitely motivating me to get to work on my side hustle–a much-needed kick in the butt!

    What: I want to earn some side income so I can splurge on trips and experiences with no guilt
    Why: I want to choose my own work and feel creatively and professionally fulfilled in a way that my full-time job is lacking

  7. What
    I want to start an academic institution in rural part of india for their socio-economic development.

    I have 40+ years of extensive experiences in the fields of education, skill development training and women’s empowerment.

  8. I want to prove the community wrong, I want to abandon my day job because they had taken me like a fool so that I will achieve my targets for this financial year

  9. I’m looking forward to a business opportunity that pays off. right I’m on a startup and I’d to employ at least 10 people with me being the director…so help me God!

  10. What…
    To use my unique gifts to create something special for the world. To be financially independent. To make my mark and help other people reach their fullest potential.
    It is what I feel called to do. I want to realize my highest aspirations. I don’t want an employer to dictate my compensation, I want my compensation to directly reflect my ideas and work ethic.

  11. What?
    I want to quit my 9-5 job working for others and startup my own business to be financially free.

    To have more time for my family and Friends. Freedom!.

  12. What: I want to earn money without having to have the so-called “real job”. I want to go hajj with my family. I want to be able to go backpacking abroad with my friends.

    Why: I want the freedom to do the things I love, anytime and anywhere I want. I don’t want to live for the weekend.

    I truly believe there’s more to life than have a good job, buy a house and a nice car, and get married.

    Thanks for writing this, Ryan.

  13. My What: To quit working for someone else and to determine my own future based on my goals and dreams. Not those of an employer who disrespect me, my time and the effort I put into making them rich. I want control of my own future and want to be financially independent.

    My Why: As previously stated, is to be financially independent and to build my “dream” home, travel several times per year and set my own hours doing something I love (freedom), not because I have to, but because I enjoy doing it. I want to provide a lifestyle for myself that has a minimal amount of unnecessary stress in it and to cut out negative people who drag me down or hold me back.

  14. My What: To quit spending my life sitting in traffic over two hours each day, to leave my 8-5 stressful job which I am good at but is not fulfilling.

    My Why: To spend the days, hours, minutes, seconds I have been given having joy, to use my energy and gifts to have a purposeful life, to be able to live not just exist.

  15. What: I want to be more financially independent and have the freedom to take opportunities to travel and work on interesting side projects/startups without worry of losing my livelihood and savings.

    Why: I want to see what the world has to offer when you’re able to create a full experience through seeing new places, meeting new people, and making an impact in whichever way entices you.

  16. What: To be able to create my own schedule and contribute to projects that will help others and allow me the freedom to travel the country. To pay off debt faster than what I would in a day job.

    Why: I feel that my creativity and unique skillset can be lost in a 9-5. I can tap into some of those traits, but not others. Plus I can get bored doing the same things over & over. By working for myself it will allow me to take on fun, short creative projects while expanding my horizons while helping others.

  17. I want to wake up not so early but still get my business going. I want to be able to take myself out without straining my finances.

  18. I don’t want any longer. I need to quit my day job as the stresses of installing flooring and my previous life choices are destroying my body. I haven’t had a vacation in 5 years or longer and I need more time to focus on the family as I’ve just recently lost a son. I need some freedom.

  19. I want to start my own business so that i can have enough time for my family and most importantly i want to invent something new

  20. My What: Raise $20,000 off first business to be able to start my second business. My Why: My second business is the business i vision constantly. It’s going to help alot of people provide for their families.

  21. WHAT…..
    To make a side income and earn enough money.

    To change life standard of myself, my parents as well as other youths who are job less.

  22. what: make side income to become debt free and free
    why: liberty of decision when it comes to my family and my future projects

  23. What: create an app that would give a community the recognition it deserves.

    Why: I appreciate it but am very tired of my 9-5..

  24. I simply want to have a new beginning after spending years in a full time job. I fed up with my job, doing the same thing everyday is a kind of boring. I like what i do but not in the last few years.

  25. What.
    I want to start my own business and make money at my own convience, I want to be a sucessful woman, want make bright future with my future husband
    I want a better life than what I have lived in my years up to now.
    I have to make it get upright myself

  26. My WHAT: To earn sufficient money for supporting my families, Be free and being with a way to maximize my income whenever I want.

    My WHY: Hungry to satisfy community with services, just creating solutions
    I will be in love of what I am doing, interests

  27. What?
    Have a side income and to pay off dept.

    I need to have financial freedom and lead a more comfortable life with my family.

  28. What
    I want to make an extra coin to afford the kind of life I would want to live plus i don’t want to spend my prime years making building someone else’s empire.

    I want to spend more time with my family…and the financial freedom.

  29. What?
    I want to quit my day job & financial freedom.

    For me, for my kids, inspiration to single mothers that we can do something with our lives.

  30. What?
    The knowledge and experience I gained through almost 20 years, always challenging something new and innovative, but always working for others…now I want to use that as capital for my own business.
    There are two many barriers you need to face when working 9-17. Running to come in time in office, dealing with different, very often, difficult personalities, lose a lot of time for unimportant things and issues, bosses that because of own ego cut your wings…I simply want to create my own business environment and chose the great and positive people to work with toward recognized business results

  31. What?

    My goal is to earn enough to achieve freedom and independence by doing what I love to do.


    I want to own my time, I want to be able to travel and take courses that will help me grow, I want to feel free to do what I choose with my time; if suddenly I want to have a 9-5 job I want to be free to choose the one I want, for pleasure and happiness, not so much for the money. I want to feel safe.

  32. I want to work on my own time, I want to matter, I want to be the best. I don’t want to work for others. I want to build something for me and for others.

  33. What?
    All in all,i use most of my time,ability and experience just to work for others.

    If I can work for rich companies and make it,why should I not use the same efforts and energy to make it happen for myself and people around me.

  34. Am a diligent worker, if I can put the same effort to build my dream. I need time for family, travel and freedom. I need financial freedom

  35. what
    creating away of saving my salary income and get my young brothers and friends parttiming jobs.

    to increase my savings and income for a better future

  36. What?
    I want to learn how to build online business and do what I love and have passion for.
    I want financial freedom and retire ASAP

  37. What?
    I need to know how to start and manage a small business.


    So that I can supplement my current income so that I will be able to pay my bills and send my children to school.

  38. what? i want to start my own business because i want lot of free time avilable for myself .
    why? to live free . and enjoy .what i want to do?

  39. What?
    I want to start a side business so that I can earn extra income so my wife can stay home with out children. I want to start a side business so that we can save for a down payment on a home faster, and pay off our home in the future faster once we get in to one.

    I want to start a side business because I enjoy programming and I am good and solving problems, and I want to be able to create websites or applications on the side that help people solve a problem.

  40. I’m 19. I’ve always wanted to do business since the age of 13 but for some unknown reasons, I took science courses. It is not that I hate science now, I like it and I always did but never has it been as business interested me. I’d stay up all night just to develop a business idea and the next morning I’d think I have to deal with science and won’t have enough time to spend on this work and I didn’t want to disappoint my self having to start and give up on something which I really cared about.
    I think now I’m ready. I realized I’ve been wasting my time with science though, they say I’m really good at it but something else was always on my heart and my mind.

  41. I have never had the urge to start up a bussiness like I have right now. Discovered that I want to be my own boss, have a successful bussiness.

    I want to be financially independent even after my husband goes on retirement. A bussiness that I will leave for my kids after I die.Being able to afford everything that I want or need.

  42. what is my goal for starting a Business?
    to have a lot of money as much as possible and create wealth

    why do i want that?
    because I want to take care and spoil of my loved ones both when alive or i passed on

  43. WHAT – I want to start my own business because I want to work for myself. I am tired of not being valued.

    WHY – I want to work on clients I enjoy and be able to see things through from start to finish.
    I want the freedom to have a flexible work space and flexible working hours if need be.

  44. WHAT
    Because I want to earn enough without leaving my day job and I know it won’t happen without pursuing a dream business.

    I want to serve my clients better so that my business will give me more money and opportunities to live a blissful life.

  45. WHAT
    I want to build a business to replace my current income and be able to run it from anywhere in the world.

    Financial Freedom, flexibility to pick and choose projects/clients, multiple steams of income

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