No matter what you do, how good you do, and how far you went, there are always naysayers. And people usually don’t listen to them, and I’ve seemed people are strictly advising others not to listen to the naysayer. In this article, I’m planning on discussing why you should listen to naysayers and how to prove them wrong. If you have ever met one in your life, read on.
Start something, anything new
This is where you usually meet a lot of naysayers. Let’s say that you have a business plan.
You have already completed all your background checks, how the market behaves, what are the usual bottlenecks you are going to face, etc. In simple words, you know what you about to do.
When you share your plan with someone else, there you’ll get to know hundreds of other possibilities why you shouldn’t start that business.
When I was starting my freelance career, I met quite a few people who were saying that freelancing won’t work. They told me that ‘You should think of something else instead.’
Upwork (Formerly oDesk) is the place where I started doing freelance work, and as I remember by the time, there was this option to check how many freelancers registered in any given country.
So I checked, and as I remember, I was the 417th from Sri Lanka. (Not so sure the number, but I’m pretty confident that was below 500).
Some of my naysaying friends had a point. In Sri Lanka, still freelancing wasn’t a thing and why should you invest your valuable time on it? That’s what most of them asked.
By the time I started my freelancing career, I was doing my B.Sc., and yeah, I have had lots of work on my way. Practicals, CA’s, Farm work, Lectures, and even needed time to dedicate to my personal life. So to some extent, they were right.
Should you quit then?
No matter how others think or blive on naysayers, I think they are helping us pointing on the things that could go wrong if we start something new.
Even though you have planned everything up ahead, there’s still a chance that you will hit bottom by missing the tiniest information. Yes, that’s the usual scenario.
When we focus more on the big picture, there’s a higher possibility that we might miss the smallest things that matter. Not always, naysayers are correct. But we shouldn’t ignore them at all.
Let’s get back to my situation then. First, I was impressed by why people are so damn reluctant to go after something new.
Even though freelancing or maybe even computers and the internet wasn’t a big thing, it doesn’t mean that we can not do big things with it.
Then I started asking questions from them. 😀
One of the first questions I asked was, what if I change and adjust my time to do something else while studying full-time on my B.Sc.?.
Because I realized that time management is the key. Frankly, I have been wasting a tremendous amount of time doing nothing and ‘jaywalking’ on the internet. I knew for a fact that I’m spending gold for coal. I needed to change it as soon as possible.
Motivation and Good Friends
Both above are rare at some points. Aren’t they?
Motivation is something you need when you are planning on pursuing a goal, when you have good friends who motivate you, even better. One of my dearest friends is the one who told me about freelance work.
And he also guided me on optimizing freelance profile and helped me learn almost all the new stuff came my way at the very beginning of my freelance career.
He wasn’t just helping me, also motivating me by sharing his earnings.
Frankly, money is a good motivator, only if you didn’t sacrifice all you have on cash. Friends, families, even parents, are the things you should never sacrifice over anything. Because one day you’ll regret everything if you sacrificed your loved ones over money or fame.
I remember once he told me that hey man, I made $60 last month by doing some freelance work and I was like ‘oh, man, that’s amazing.’ And next month he called me and told me that he made $700 that month. That’s $700 hard-earned cash, back in 2010.
Maybe you think (That you have followed lots of Gurus and their earning reports these days#) making $700 it’s not even a thing.
Well, for you, that might be true and correct. But for me, that was kind of a motivation I looked for, and now I have it.
Naysayers and convincing them
It is hard to convince some naysayers over anything. Some naysayers are just ‘naysayers.’ They see problems for every answer! Not the other way around. Stay away from them
But showing my friends oDesk profile to my naysayers made them reconsider their positions over freelance money or the so-called ‘e-money.’
Then some started supporting my idea of becoming a freelancer while studying fulltime. Some still were against my thought.
Managing time and focusing on your goal
I started forming up a better strategy to work. I realized that I sleep a lot.
Viola found the time I needed badly.
Then I rescheduled my whole day. I usually started my day around 6 in the morning and quit around in the mid-night. In between, I had all my academic work and watched at least a couple of movies a day.
No win comes without a sacrifice!
I rescheduled my typical day. I started my day at 3 am. That’s added three extra hours to my day. Also, quit watching movies.
I mean I restricted it to just one movie per day. And there were many other fine-tunings to my routine as well. So I roughly calculated and found that I almost saved 6-8 extra hours per day.
That’s 40hrs per week. That how may hours a government worker should work per week, and I kept that much of time by fine-tuning my routine activities.
All those were not just to prove my naysayers wrong, but also to make things right for me as well. Like almost all the other students, I also had financial difficulties.
My parents have sacrificed everything they had to give us (Me and my elder sister) higher education. I needed to provide them with relief by making some money while studying full time.
Hurdles, Hurdles, and Naysayers
Nothing’s easy. That is for sure. I managed to save quite a bit of time for my freelance career. But, I lacked one key piece in the puzzle. Which was a ‘Laptop’.
Yes, I planned everything without having the critical element you need to become a telecommute freelancer.
Luckily, my girlfriend (now Wife) she had a laptop. So the problem almost solved!
I burrowed her laptop in the evening and started going after clients till mid-night and then started my day at 3. Anyone who visited my faculty at any hour, I might be a usual sight.
Because I spent quite a lot of time at the faculty. Because we had 24hrs, WiFi access. 😀
I used my faculty’s wifi until I find myself a sustainable monthly income. Then I moved to a paid unrestricted internet connection.
During all these hard times, I found my first client on oDesk (now Upwork).
Can you imagine the joy? If you ever been to this situation, you know what I mean!
But, it made things even harder. First, there was one client and then I started getting more clients. So it made things a bit harder. Not time. But the resources. Specifically, the laptop.
My girlfriend, she was doing an IT Degree and she needed the laptop, just like we all need food 😀
When I’m getting more clients, I needed to use the computer often. So I started going after my friends. Not the naysayers.!
So I burrowed their laptops and continue my freelance work. Somehow I managed to keep up with my clients and never missed a deadline.
Domino effect and Naysayers
As much as I’m getting clients, I worked even harder by the day. Ultimately I started making a considerable amount of money. As an undergraduate student, I managed to make money to cover my food and clothes and almost everything.
With the help of my girlfriend (now wife, oh I did tell that already, didn’t I? But she can not be ignored in any of these as she was and still is the backbone to all these efforts)
That was a breakthrough and all dominos started falling one after another. Naysayers realized that I made a breakthrough and they needed to know it badly.
That unrealistic e-money (to them actually) has become a reality and now they are eager than ever to know-how!
That’s usual and I was getting the feeling that I almost have proven my naysayers wrong.
First I paid for my food and then I started sending money home. That’s the real breakthrough I ever wanted!. As a second-year undergraduate student, I became one of the moneymakers in the family. That was a huge win.
Do good and Good will come to you.
I have experienced it. Since I know how hard I worked to find my first client, I never needed to make any of my clients disappointed. Therefore I always did what’s best for my clients and one happy client means more potential clients.
Then I started saving money for a laptop. Because till this point, I have been burrowing computers from the others and doing my thing. Within just 5 months, I managed to save almost $1000 and purchased my first ever laptop.
I still love my Dell Inspirion 5110 (With Core i7 Second-gen Processor) and believe me, that beast is still working fine. It was like a family member to me. That very thing helped us made $200,000 and still helping us!
By the time the laptop I purchased had all the best flagship specifications in the Sri Lankan market, and it helped me expand my services even further.
Returning the favor and helping naysayers
Everything happens for a reason and we should realize that before it’s too late. When I started making some noticeable cash, naysayers turned to me, and they needed to learn.
Before starting with them, I started with the people who allowed me to burrow their computers. Because we shouldn’t ever forget about the people who helped us in the hard times, when the time is right, you will have lots of friends.
But, people who were with you, when you have almost nothing are the ones you should safeguard.
And I started helping almost everyone who came to us.
Yes, people needed to make money. They noticed the money we have, but most of them didn’t see those things we did to get here.
They only saw the tip of the iceberg and may start thinking that making money online is easy. Well, it is easy, only if you put the right amount of effort into the action. Otherwise, you will not make a penny!
That is what most of the people failed to understand. From the people whom we helped, the majority has given up their freelancing journey even before starting it. But, gladly a few managed to experience the real taste of freelancing.
Why you should listen to naysayers
You should listen to everyone if you need to succeed. Yes, you heard it right. All opinions matter and by listening to others, you can shape up all your strategies. Specially naysayers are a sort of a gift, If I may add. Focus on the big picture and never ignore the smallest details. Even if you missed a few, you would soon realize by listening to your naysayers. Trust me, I have such experiences and ignorance of those tiny details won’t do any good in the long run
Why is naysayer important?
Consider naysayers as a way of correcting your mistakes, flaws in your work-flow. Not everyone comes forward and tells you your mistakes. But naysayers do. That’s why they are so damn important. Even they are naysayers, most probably they could be your friends or families. Friends and families matter, no matter what!
How do I stop naysayers?
No, you don’t stop them. Instead, you listen to them. Correct your flaws, fine-tune your strategies, and move forward. Naysayers will quit, once you show them the results. Success is the only way of stopping naysayers and until that, you shouldn’t stop them at all.
What do you say to a naysayer?
You say nothing to them; You just listen to what they have. You may tell them your idea. Then only they will come forward and tell you hundreds of ways of getting your plan ruined. These are the things you should listen carefully. If they have a point, you should re-evaluate your strategies. In the end, you may Thank them. 😀
Conclusion- Why you should listen to naysayers
It is 10 years now we started freelancing, and we have made $300,000 so far. If you think these are super low numbers, I should say yes they are. Only if you are making millions.
But the truth is, we have made more money in the past 10 years than an average government worker would have made in 100 years.
A special thank should go out to all the naysayers. If it wasn’t for them, I might have started without knowing my weak points. If it wasn’t for my naysayers, we might not come this far.
This is why you should listen to your naysayer and work hard to prove them wrong. No matter if you are a freelancer or a businessman or an entrepreneur, you will meet naysayers day in, day out.
Ignoring them is not recommended at all. You should learn from whoever comes with a good lesson. It doesn’t matter whether if it is a naysayer or a mentor if you see an opportunity to learn something then learn.
Start asking questions. Optimize your routine and most importantly, keep a low profile until you make it your target. Even after achieving what you worked hard for, you still don’t make a noise. Let the others do it for you. And trust me, others will do it for you for free.
If you still think that naysayers should ignore at any cost, then you are missing a lot on the table. The most straightforward truth is, people who are looking at us from a different angle, people who are listening to ideas from a different perspective are the best advisors.
Don’t take their words lightly. And don’t ever let them demoralize you under any circumstance. If you do these things, with a sound plan in mind, that is why you should listen to naysayers and still prove them wrong.