Turn Your Current Challenges Into Future Opportunities

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Have you had a recent challenge in your life? Of course you have. We all have. For all of us that live on earth (I assume that covers everyone that’s reading this article), there is just no way to escape the occasional pain and challenges that come within the passing days, weeks, months, and years of our lives. We might lose our job, have a miscarriage, lose our best friend in a freak accident, or maybe even suffer physically ourselves. Whatever the case may be for you, these are your challenges. These are the struggles you have to face when you get out of bed every morning. But, just know that you’re not alone and there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

My current challenges have been thrown at me all at once recently. My once married status abruptly transformed to single at the end of last year, and with this came a new mountain of debt that I certainly didn’t expect. It has been a struggle to find the funds to pay off this debt within the allotted 6-month time-frame, and just when I started feeling good about it I discovered that I had an additional $6,400 tax bill to pay this month. This definitely qualified as a challenge.

What Did I Do?

I discovered this new tax debt after meeting with my accountant in early March. With only a month to go before I owed the $6,400, I had to figure out a way to make some more money, and fast! Fortunately, I had some cash in the bank (just in case I DID owe some money to the IRS), but I still needed to come up with $1,000 in 30 days time.

In order to come up with the thousand bucks, I figured that I needed to utilize a skill and a network that I already possessed. That led me to my website of course. What could I do that other bloggers would pay for without even thinking twice about it? After a few hours of thought, I had my answer. Articles! Every blogger feels burdened with their writing schedule at times. If they commit to writing an article every other day, that means that they need to come up with nearly 4 new topics every day! It doesn’t take long before the creative juices dry up and writing gets a bit tiring.

To overcome this burden of writing, many bloggers either hire staff writers (as I have done on this site – hope you’re enjoying their stuff by the way) or they purchase articles from an outside resource to post on their site. Quality staff writers can be costly and hard to find, and articles can cost $25 or more as well, so I decided to offer my services and sell articles at a low price of $10 a piece.

Writing Articles

In order to make a lot of money in a short period of time, I knew that I had to do two things effectively – (1) I needed to gather interest in my services and (2) I had to etch quite a lot of time out of my schedule and write quickly. Luckily, since I’ve often reached out to my fellow blogger friends in the past, they were glad to place orders for my articles. The first order was for 2, then another for 5, and yet another for 11! In those first 30 days, I received orders for 63 articles!

Wow, 63 articles. That is a ton! By basically setting a timer for 15 minute intervals (I tried to write one article every 15 minutes), I was able to bust out 4 articles every hour. Sometimes I was successful, sometimes not, but I was typically pretty close. With this strict schedule, I was able to complete all of those 63 articles in the 30 day time-frame!

The Future Opportunity

While I didn’t quite get to my $1,000 goal, the article orders are still coming in strong (so I will soon have the money in full). At this moment, I have a backlog of 84 articles. And, it seems like every day I continue to get more orders. What began as an initial struggle to make a few bucks has really flourished into a future opportunity! As the word spreads about my quality articles, more and more people are coming out of the woodwork to place more orders. I truly believe that I can develop this further and materialize a very profitable venture. What once was a desperate attempt to make money could potentially be a future business!

What Is Your Opportunity?

As I said when I began this article, we all have our challenges in life. But, we have a choice in how we respond to these challenges. We can either lay down in defeat and wallow in our own self-pity or we can create a future opportunity. Perhaps your struggle wasn’t financial like mine, but there are still future opportunities.

Let’s say that you recently discovered you have terminal cancer and have only 6 months to live. No one would blame you for being upset and sad for the remainder of your life, but by doing this, you have not even begun to explore what opportunity there might be for you out there! Some of you may be asking yourself, “What opportunity? You’re going to die shortly. How can there possibly be opportunity in that?” There are plenty. Perhaps there’s something you can do (undergo tests or agree to an after-life biopsy) to increase the knowledge of doctors all over the world, which would allow them to find a cure for everyone else that contracts this terrible disease after you! Or, instead of being a bump on a log, you could decide to share your faith with other hurting souls in the world and inspire them to keep pressing forward in this life, just as you have chosen to do.

Through every challenge there are future opportunities. Will you decide to keep your eyes fixed on the struggle? Or will you find the opportunity?

What are some struggles you’ve had? What good came from them?

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Battle of the Mind Money

Derek

AUTHOR Derek

My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.

26 Comments

  1. Great post! I am a firm believer of always looking at the positive side of a situation. That doesn’t mean I never get down or mad or angry. I let those emotions come out, but then I flip a switch in my thinking and start thinking of all of the good things that a situation brings about.
    Jon @ MoneySmartGuides recently posted..The Round Table – April 12, 2013

    • Glad you enjoyed it Jon! We sound like we’re pretty similar on this one. Sometimes we can get emotional, but ultimately we find a solution to the problem and see the good that comes from it. Thanks for the comment!

  2. Didn’t know about your single status. However, doesn’t feel good to know that you can find better things in the future from having your head on straight? I know it’s tough but you are tougher and this post shows it. Love it for being upfront.
    Jai Catalano recently posted..Debt Matters: 5 Reasons Debt Should Matter

    • Yeah, the end of last year was definitely a tough one. But yes, it does feel good now that I’m coming out of the tough times and seeing the opportunities ahead.

  3. Nice work Derek. It sounds like if you can keep writing at that pace, you’re making a decent hourly rate too. Although, I’m sure it will get to you eventually. Good luck keeping up with everything.
    20’s Finances recently posted..Why Seller’s Concessions are Popular

    • Yeah, to be honest, I am getting a little burned out already, but I have some other related ideas that should bring a future opportunity as well. Thanks for the well wishes!

  4. Wow! 15 minutes per article? I don’t think I could do that!

    I’m glad that you found a way to close the money gap. We had a nasty tax surprise one year and weren’t ready for it–our estimated tax payment calculations were wrong and weren’t nearly enough. It was rough!
    Jenny @ Frugal Guru Guide recently posted..The Tax Outlook for 2013

    • Over the past 2.5 years, I have written 600+ articles, so I’ve definitely had some practice getting my ideas structured. And since I can quickly “see” the article before I write it, the only time that I need is what my fingers limit me to! 😉

  5. Great mindset to have and really awesome how it is working out.

    I had a similar situation when I first started renting out a property. There werea bout $1000 in repairs pretty early on. I wanted to find another way to pay for them and was introduced to soccer refereeing. During peek season, I make about $1000 a month and at a decent hourly rate. The repairs are paid for and now I have an extra income stream.
    Greg @ ThriftGenuity.com recently posted..Why I Hate Paying Taxes – Because We’re Not All the Same

    • Great example Greg! You “needed” the money at the time, which prompted you to start this additional income source, but now it’s just bonus money! Awesome!

    • Yeah, upping your time commitment is always tough to do, because there are always more important things that should be done first. Best of luck to you though. I’m sure you’ll not only find a solution, but a future opportunity as well!

    • Thank you Shannon! After nearly 3 years of writing articles every other day, I bet you could whip some out pretty quickly yourself. 🙂

  6. Congratulations! Most people just complain about the difficulties instead you took action. I think there is a lesson here an action to deal with problems helps you succeed. Complaining does nothing but share the misery.
    krantcents recently posted..Incorporating Your Business

    • I really noticed that today actually (at my day job). There are certain people that just complain about problems all day, but do nothing to solve their frustrations! It just doesn’t make sense to me, and to be honest it’s getting annoying….

    • Thanks for the kudos Marvin. It’s really just something that had to be done, but yes, the opportunity that came from it might not have been seen by all. Thanks for the comment!

  7. Way to keep moving forward. Bad news can get you down but it is a choice for each of us on how we will react to the news.

    • You’ve got that right Jennifer. Sure, it sucks to get bad news, but there’s always an opportunity and a positive that can come from it!

  8. Great message! I’m excited that you took action instead of feeling sorry for yourself. You are a winner and an inspiration!

    • Thanks Bridget! I’m glad I could be an inspiration with this message. 🙂

    • Thanks for the compliments Jeremy! That means a lot. While writing over 100 articles isn’t super glamorous, it has earned me the $1,000 I need to keep on surviving. And now, in the future I can change ‘surviving’ to ‘thriving’! 😉


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