The Struggle is Real: Embracing Challenges on the Journey to Success

39 Responses

  1. James Coe says:

    # CJ the soon to be Affiliate Marketing legend . I must say CJ that was a great read given the I am a visual learning right brain learner. Great job in leaving your comfort zone. That’s going to add a ton of value to your Blog CJ. I will be stopping back to load up and learn some of your new skills as you advance. CJ Vet-2-Vet You Got This! Your mission is clear carry-on. Just a few more comments. If the online Sales Page claim is 90 Days or less hit the top page (x) as fast as you can. In summary, the struggle is real only if you go it alone. That said, consider a proven mentor. Finally, I think I am going out of my comfort zone too into Podcasting. What do you think CJ?

    • CJ says:


      Thanks for the ego boost! LOL!
      I am glad you found value in the post and in the different forms of media to consume the information. I agree, seeking out a good mentor defiantly helps reduce the struggles but no one can eliminate them totally. They are a part of life and growth. They allow us to stretch and become the person we are meant be. Take for instance you have a great mentor in Dean Holland but you want to do a podcast. To do the podcast will be a struggle to lean and get outside your comfort zone. There is nothing anyone can do to keep you from going through that struggle But the value on the other side out ways the cost of the struggle. I encourage you to go for it. A podcast is a great way to build an audience. The advice one of my mentors gave me on podcasts is that they build slow but once a person starts listening they have a tendency to stick with it.

      You Got This and keep me informed on your podcast venture.

  2. Ken McGarvey says:

    Excellent post! You make it sound as if you have been posting for quite awhile. Your spot on about the struggle being real, we often forget these things and can’t see the forest for the trees. It’s even more impressive that both you and your spouse can make this happen together. Keep up the great job, I can’t wait to read your next post!

    • CJ says:

      Thanks for the complement! The struggle is truly real but as you mentioned sometimes we get mind blocked and cannot see clearly. When those times come It becomes necessary to stop and evaluate what is realistic. There are a lot less struggles when we have realistic expectations.

      As far as SJ and I doing it together, We are both in it to win it!!
      Have an awesome day.

  3. Acasha Klewe says:

    Ahhhh! I love the video!! I too want to add this feature to my blog posts, but haven’t mustered up the time and the nerve yet to actually do it. But it really is a powerful tool to better convey your personality and your honesty – which is so powerful in connecting with your audience.

    • CJ says:


      Thanks for the comment it very encouraging. However, it only shows the finished copy and not the 10 times it took before I had a version that I thought was good enough to upload. I know you have the courage to overcome your fears and I believe in you!

      The struggles are real and we face them everyday. Just this week I had a setback and lost a few days of working on my marketing business. We cannot get away from them but we can reframe how we look at them.

      As far as SJ and I doing this together, we wouldn’t have it any other way.

      Keep moving forward and you reach your goals and dreams.

  4. Atif Perwiz says:

    CJ. YOU GOT THIS!, you certainly have. What an amazing post. It was great to see you and hear you and read you. This is great as it gives the audience the option of how they get your message. Some people don’t like to read or would rather close their eyes and listen. This was fantastic and well done. In fact I am thinking about adding video and audio to my blog too. Watch this space. Well done Brother. Thanks, Atif

    • CJ says:


      Thanks for your kind words of encouragement. I am glad you enjoyed being able to consume the information in multiple formats.

      I do encourage you to start going in that directions. Stats say 80% of all people prefer video over other media. This means if we truly want to max out our influence
      then diving into video is a must. I know you can do it and you’ll be great. Just note it took be about 10 tries before I got a version I was willing to publish.

      I am proud to see your progress.

  5. Amazing! Stepping in and moving forward with a new way of doing things even when it is uncomfortable! Such a positive attitude to have and keep as you continue on your continue.
    Totally agree that sometimes reframing what we think makes a huge difference.
    Best of luck in your journey!

    • CJ says:


      I am glad you found the presentation and information to be amazing. Learning to reframe things in a positive manner is a valuable skill. It allow one to take something that is not ideal and view it in a more positive light.

      Thanks for you comments

  6. Tom Bledzki says:

    So true about fear. It is False Evidence Appearing Real.
    There is a Polish saying when Fear knocked on the door, Courage opened it and there wasn’t anybody behind it- in a direct translation. You showed your courage in making that recording. That’s a huge progress. And as they say, progress is better than perfection.
    Looking forward to more.

    • CJ says:


      I love your Polish saying!

      This is my favorite saying from the move Princes Diaries.
      “Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever,
      but the cautious do not live at all. From now on you’ll be traveling the road between who you think you are and who you can be. The key is to allow yourself to make the journey.”

      I believer one has to find a balance between Perfection and half heartedness. If I give 100% to a task it doesn’t matter if it’s perfect because it is my best.

      Thanks for you comments

  7. Stephanie says:

    Hi CJ,

    I love this post because I can totally relate to it. I don’t have unrealistic expectations like I will get “rich” in 3 months or even 12 months or even 2 years. But that’s the problem, I don’t know what is the norm or what to expect. What IS realistic? What CAN I expect? What is a financial goal to shoot for in 3 months, 6 months, a year. So, this is my quandry. But, that is what I appreciated about your post that you talk about reframing the way I look at this. I went to school for my Bachelors and Masters and that took a great deal of time. So, I became a Licensed Therapist. But, that didn’t mean I didn’t have to start my business, and build a private practice, and that has taken time. I am still always working on that, however, one thing that I have done is use more paid advertising. With affiliate marketing, I am not quite ready to throw money at it until I do the groundwork and foundation of targeting free traffic generation. I want to put some work into this first, then I will be more willing to do the work of paid ads. Especially now that I don’t necessarily want strangers on my email list. In any case, thanks for this post, it was super encouraging and gave me something to go on!

    • CJ says:


      Setting proper expectation is a challenge at times. Right now my expectations are to complete training , keep blogging and make my first sale. Right now I cannot see beyond that but know that as my business and my self grow I be able to see further ahead and better shape expectations. My next blog is on (JIT) or just in time information. It has helped me stay focused and set realistic expectations as I reach each phase of my business. Thanks for sharing.

  8. This is so true, I, too, have fallen for the get-rich-quick, promise of success with little effort and fast turnaround. I love how you are doing this together, I think it is so beautiful to be able to share this journey with your partner! This post really hit home in many ways and look forward to following you two on this journey!

    • CJ says:


      SJ an I made a pack along time ago, If we couldn’t do it together then we wouldn’t do it at all. There is a quote I learned when SJ and I first got married, “A couple that plays together stays together”. We do everything together to including our business. Both of us have strengths and weaknesses but we complement each other in these areas. However, we both have our own struggles to overcome and unfortunately no one can face those struggles for you. We can give support which is crucial but can face them for them.

      I am glad the post resonated with you.

      Thanks for posting a comment.

  9. Robert Klein says:

    CJ, SJ and Shadow,

    I totally appreciate the personal interjections in your video content. And I totally agree that setting realistic expectations is imperative. The “pie in the sky” content floods the market. You unveil the reality well.

    Oh the fears of what others think are real for me. It will take lots of work to overcome the fear of what my naysayers are saying. Just knowing that I am not alone in this struggle is comforting. And having a team of supporters that want us to succeed is imperative.

    Keep up the great work as this was a wonderful first attempt with the video content. As you alluded to – I learned long ago that people learn best with various type of media – be it printed form, audio, video and even live. They will all ring true with different folks.

    Great post!

    • CJ says:


      I cannot imagine the struggle of having the fear of what others think. Many years ago I made a conscious decision to listen to what other say, evaluate it, take any value from it and toss the rest and then move on. This has been a blessing to be able to. One thing I always remind myself, I have to wakeup every morning and love and live with myself. Others can just simply give advice and go do their thing.

      I encourage you to be yourself and let the rest take care of itself.

  10. David Roper says:

    CJ, Great inspirational vedio about stepping out of your comfort zone. Love the Marine Statement as my Son was in the Marines… The Struggle is real but we will overcome!!! Doing what it takes to achieve success in an Honest and Ethical way even if it means taking steps into the unknown world of Video… Well Done!

    • CJ says:


      Thanks for the encouragement. Being a Marine is one of the major turning points in my life. It taught me to have confidence and a can do attitude. The lessons I learn from that experience still permeates every area of my life, to include my business. I wouldn’t trade the experiences for anything.

      I like how you stated success, it must be done in an honest and ethical way. In my book this is the only way. If it cannot be done in a truthful, open , honest way then it has no place in my life or business.

      Thanks for the comment

  11. Alan Lim says:

    When you keep seeing videos and sales letters telling you how you can make 3 to 10k per month within 30, 60, 90 days, it’s hard not to be tempted.

    I think people fall for it not necessary because they believe in it, but rather they want to believe in it. There is a subtle difference between “believe” and “want to believe”.

    Sometimes, people have to bang their head against the wall over and over again, until their head is bleeding before they finally wake up. And I am definitely guilty of that for many years.

    • CJ says:


      There is defiantly a big difference in believing and wanting to believe! Many people are seeking hope and there are a lot of online marketing that pray on that hope. We both can contest of having that hope and only being disappointed that we did not fulfill that hope.

      The good new is that there are honest and ethical online marketers that are reaching out to help people get through the sea of marketing information. Which brings me to a truth. If you want to fulfill your hopes and dreams in the online marketing space, you need a honest ethical mentor to guide you.

      I know you, myself and Dean Holland are trying hard to help those why are willing to getup and try again to fulfill their hopes and dreams in an honest and ethical manner.

      Thanks for your comments.

      • All you have described is real. The struggle is real. As we come face to face with our own so called weaknesses, the best thing to do is relax and accept, and move on.

        I am interested in a members only accountability meet up!

  12. Marc says:

    Great post CJ,
    Overcoming the fear of success is one big thing that I’ve dealt with in the past. Having a great support system was instrumental in getting over it.
    Having a clear objective and focusing on what needs to be done to get there is so important!

    • CJ says:


      I have met several individuals that feared success so they kept sabotaging themselves and their business. Fear is such a crippler for most people and they only way out for them is to have a support team around them. Having that support is so crucial, everyone needs to know they are not on their journey alone.

      You are correct having the ability to focus on things that need to get done is helpful. However, to do that one must have realistic expectation and not be paralyzed by their fears.

      Thanks for you input on this blog post.

  13. Jon Wesley Bowman says:

    There are so many different programs that promise grandiose outcomes with little time or effort, people get discouraged and give up and think they failed or are not capable. I think support from the group is a great and needed thing because it is fairly no existent from most. Thanks for your perspective.

    • CJ says:

      Joh you are correct, there is a vast sea of program that provide illusion to gracious riches. One of the things we can do is to shine a light and show people the way through all the junk and help them develop a proper set of expectations.

      Also, you said, support is critical and we have the opportunity to encourage and help others find their way.


  14. Michael says:

    Hey CJ – excellent content, and way to go jumping into the video blogging pool!

    Affiliate marketing is built on a foundation of push, push, push, trying to sell this, that and the other thing to your list, all of which are the best thing since the last best thing! I appreciate your honesty and your determination to press through the difficulties and establish consistency in your business.

    Overnight success is such a misnomer. Let’s make a difference out there with truthful, honest, real solutions to help people move forward in life!

    • CJ says:


      Thanks for the encouragement. Video blogging was defiantly a leap of faith.

      I am thankful that I have been able to develop reasonable expectations. also that I am not an island but that plenty of others have experienced the same thing. The sad part is that many gave up on their goas and dreams but they fell for the illusions. This post was to hopefully shine a light on the illusions and help people to set realistic expectations and let individual no they didn’t fail. Hopefully it will also encourage others to try again with proper expectations.


  15. Yes, the illusion of overnight success or even just quick, within a month or two is crazy. I heard that message so often as I’m sure you have and the truth hit me hard, but was refreshing at the same time. hearing the truth made me feel like I wasn’t a complete failure because I couldn’t get rich quick.

    this blog post is so important for people to learn the truth before it hurts them! Thank you for posting this!

    • CJ says:


      I couldn’t agree more, it is so important to set proper expectations and not get caught up in the illusions. One of my reasons for sharing this is in hoping to keep others from having to go through this. Also, to provide hope for those who have gone through it.

      I am glad you found insight in this and glad that hearing the truth help you realize you are not a failure.

      You have the ability to go and do anything as long as you do it with proper expectations.
      Keep Moving Forward!!

  16. It is very challenging to be starting an online business. I have a real struggle to overcome my fears. Each step of the way is so new and uncomfortable that I struggle to move forward. A supportive community would be a game changer. I can see how that would make a big difference in my life. Thanks for sharing your struggles as well! I’m not so alone in this 🙂

    • CJ says:


      You are defiantly not alone!!! SJ and I are here to help you. I can relate to your struggles. New things often come with fears. Always remember to stay focused on one task at a time. You are not in a race but on a journey. Do make sure you take every advantage you have to ask for help. No can help you if you don’t take the time to ask.

      I know for me it took me several years before I got to the point where I would ask for help. I know now how foolish it was not to ask.

      Let me know how I can help get you past some of your fears.

  17. Tony says:

    This post is incredibly empowering! Your honest depiction of the ups and downs in the journey of online marketing, especially the insights into the pitfalls of chasing overnight success, that really hit home.

    The idea of embracing struggles as stepping stones and setting realistic expectations is a game-changer.

    Your emphasis on the value of a supportive community and mentors in overcoming fear and fostering growth is pure gold

    It’s a great reminder that success is a journey, not a destination. Thank you for sharing your wisdom!

    • CJ says:

      You are welcome! I am just trying to share my experience from the heart. If I can embark some wisdom along the way then I have accomplished my goal. I am glad you found value in the post.

      Also, Thanks for encouraging words. When one defines expectations correctly it is liberating. At least it was for me and SJ.

      I loved seeing your blueprint on the zoom meeting the other day.
      You got this!!

  18. Ernie says:

    This is very impressive, and I look forward to following your journey! I especially like your honesty about your challenges. I, too, am on a journey similar to you and I hope to achieve success. Your statement “No success can be reached without living outside our comfort zone and pushing though fear. We must not avoid fear but face the challenge head on embracing the struggle and using it to cultivate a mindset that sees difficulties as temporary hurdles, not insurmountable barriers.” Thank you for reminding me about this important fact!

    • CJ says:

      It is so important that we have proper expectations. For me this gives me relief and a feeling of freedom. I know that I am not alone and it is just part of the process.
      When you realize this it should be liberating. When struggles come you know you did not fail you just going through a growth and steppingstones to the next place.

      You Got This!!!

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