A few things I had learned by April 2008


Too much. Headache. No creative thoughts. Can’t think of angles. Desperate for short-term gratification. Go to bed late. Wake up early. Breakfast doesn’t inspire … Natasja is beautiful. She’s the absolute light of my life.


What I learned this week, by Brand Smit

Any way you want to make money can be described as a job. For some people it is teaching English; for others, it is marketing through original articles, or marketing by way of a dozen mini blogs, or pay-per-click advertising campaigns; and for some it is sports betting, horse racing or the buying and selling of prices on a betting exchange.

At least basic training is essential before you start doing any job. More advanced training, both theoretical and practical, is crucial if you are serious about making a long-term success of anything.

Everybody knows this, right? And yet, how many jobs have I not taken the past more than two years without even the most basic training?

One example is marketing through your own website: I assumed the fact that I could produce my own content qualified me for the job. I could not have been more wrong.

Many argue: “Start taking action the first day. Don’t waste too much time on reading how to do something.”

I understand about parking at the traffic light. But how much time isn’t wasted by starting a job without an essential understanding of how to do it right? In terms of marketing on the Internet, we are talking time – precious time that is wasted as if hours and days and weeks and months are cheap commodities. In terms of betting and trading, losses are measured in precious dollars.

It is easy to underestimate the difficulty of work with which you can earn money from home. It is also true that you can overestimate the complexity, and never start with anything.

Know that you will waste time and that you will lose money if you start a project without the necessary training; also know that neither time nor money will ever produce any kind of return if you never start applying what you learn.


The other day I recited for Natasja the following quote: “Fear of failure leads to fear of commitment.”

I added: “I was always afraid of failure, so I tried to avoid it at all cost.”

After the obligatory pause, a confession, followed by an embarrassed chuckle: “I have failed so many times in the past two years …”

I had to learn to become humble. I had to learn of failure. And, as I also recently realised, I had to learn about regret.