After mentoring hundreds of guys over the past several years, I learned there’s a certain pattern that dictates whether a person will succeed in building a location-independent business or will fail.

In fact, there’s actually an array of milestones that people get stuck on and never seem to power through. In this article, I want to dissect the areas where people usually get stuck that eventually doom their prospects and dreams of becoming truly free.

1) You lack motivation

Motivation is where everything begins. Building a business is like building your own house instead of signing a contract and moving into an existing one. It takes a lot more effort to build your own house than to live in someone else’s. 

Similarly, if you’re working at some 9-5 job that’s depositing a set salary into your account every two weeks, you’re at a stage where you have very minimal motivation to do anything else. It’s the same if you’re a young guy (or older) who is living with his parents.

Since everything else is taken care for you, why would you suddenly decide to exert unnecessary effort to do something new?

If you’re sitting on your couch, watching Netflix and enjoying a cold beer, why would you suddenly get up, put on your running shoes and run a 400m sprint?

There must be a reason. This reason needs to be a lot more than some abstract notion of “freedom” or “independence.”

Maybe you want to want to wake up with a gorgeous Brazilian woman in your bed every morning. 

Maybe you want to wake up in downtown Kiev and see beautiful old school architecture outside your windows.

Maybe you want to live and work in a place with permanent summer like Thailand, Indonesia (Bali) instead of dealing with rough winters in your hometown of NYC, Detroit, Montreal.

Or, just maybe you’re just tired of living paycheck-to-paycheck and want to make as much money as you’re willing to work.

Do you see a pattern here? 

There needs to be something that you’re just dying to want. For me, personally, living in Ukraine is it. This is my ideal life, and I will fight tooth and nail to keep this life going.

What kind of life would you fight for?

2) You don’t want to work (grind)

While motivation is important, it’s just not enough. It’s like the propulsion fuel to get started, but to continue, you need to be comfortable with the grind and hustle.

Unfortunately, even after people become motivated, and I’ve given them the plan to develop their business with regular checkups to see if they’re on the right path, they still shy away from the work that needs to be done.

A lot of this work is monotonous and boring by nature. This can include writing lots of content for a new site. Making a ton of videos on different topics. Cold emailing a bunch of people and pitching your products or services.

This is the type of work that’s far from “elegant” or “exciting.” It’s not the kind of work that people envision doing that connects them with their passion and makes them feel like they’re expressing themselves to the fullest. As you can rightly expect, not many people want to do this work.

I would say the majority of people stop at this stage. They just don’t have the right willpower to power through to lock themselves in the room, shut off all the distractions and just power through monotonous and boring work.

3) You’re afraid of putting yourself out there

Another very common bottleneck where people get stuck is when people know what they must do, but they can’t get started for some reason. They will endlessly discuss various ideas and plans, but when everything is said and done there would be no action taken.

This might be something as small as writing even one article or making just one video on a very simple topic. 

Motivation is there. They don’t have any issues grinding through the boring stuff. They’re just not willing to expose their work to the world.

Maybe they can’t find the perfect brand. Maybe they don’t have the proper video recording equipment for making a video (hint: it doesn’t really matter; an iPhone is fine). 

The fact of the matter is that you can have the best idea in the world (or hundreds of them), but none of it matters until you put something out there and let people decide if it’s good enough and if there’s traction.

After all, as I learned while working in many startups in Silicon Valley, ideas are meaningless; what really matters is the execution and seeing what the audience wants. 

Put yourself out there and see what people think; you can always pivot, rebrand, redo things later on. Don’t worry, nobody is going to judge you. Or, if they do—just let them, you’ll make more money that way.

4) You’re not aggressive/shameless enough

This is a corollary of work but has a different meaning. By itself, work is monotonous and requires an effort from you and you only. When you complete this work, you can pat yourself on the back because you’ve done something that 99% of the people just aren’t willing to do.

But sometimes even this monotonous grind is enough; you need to push yourself harder and faster. You need to become comfortable with competition. You need to become comfortable roughing feathers.

Moreover, you need to become comfortable tooting your own horn. You must to learn to become shameless.

After all, if you’re selling a product and you believe it’s the best product in the world that will help people, then why not tell people that you have the best product in the world? Why not be super confident that your problem is exactly what the audience needs to solve a problem?

For instance, I know that my Empire Building Toolkit is absolutely the best course for learning to build an Internet empire. It contains everything, all my knowledge, experience and secrets. And I’m not afraid of saying that because I believe in it 100%.

Naturally, for most people, it means going beyond their comfort zone, and they’re not comfortable doing that. That is precisely why you’re left with no choice but to work for those that can.

5) You give up too easily

Let’s say you’ve done everything you could. You have a mountain of motivation, the grind doesn’t faze you, you are not afraid of putting yourself out there to see if something works or not, and you’re also aggressive enough to put all of this motion with the maximum impact.

But you still failed.

At this stage, many people would simply give up and go back to their comfortable day jobs. They may think that they’re not businessmen and that building a business is just not in their blood.

Except what they don’t realize is that building a business is like learning how to walk.

Imagine a 1-year-old child who’s just starting to learn how to walk. If the child falls down, does he or she give up learning how to walk and just relents to crawling for the rest of his or her life?

Of course not. Just recently, I watched a video of my 1-year-old learning how to walk. She fell down and immediately got up and continued to walk. She didn’t think to herself – “This is hard, I won’t try walking again.” 

Instead, she instinctively got up and continued walking. Walking is something she wanted to do, and falling down was a mere blimp in those ambitions.

The same applies when you’re building something. When you don’t have experience, the odds are pretty high that whatever you’ve cobbled together is not going to work. That’s just the nature of the game. It’s like trying to find something in a dark room. Sure, there’s a chance that you might throw a dart in a dark room and hit a bulls eye. But without existing data points from previous experiences, your chances are pretty slim.

The good news is that, hopefully, you learned a series of important lessons that will help you in your next endeavor. Things that you didn’t know and had no idea even existed. Now, you can start over with a new business idea and, hopefully, get much closer to success than last time.

I’ve failed a lot of times, but those failures were instrumental in helping me understand the real nature of the market and what people were really after.

It’s like when you’re learning how to properly meet women. Chances are that you will initially fail because you’re calibrating your actions to their behavior, but after some practice, talking and seducing women will become second nature, like riding a bicycle or driving a car with a manual transmission.

6) You don’t like money

The primary purpose of a business is to make money. It’s to increase the number of digits in your bank account. Everything is else secondary. That’s just the fact of life. If you want to give back and donate to worthy causes, start a nonprofit organization.

For most of my life, money wasn’t something I worried or concerned myself too much with. Either I had a sizable savings account, or I was making just enough to furnish my lifestyle and not a penny more.

Later on, I realized that I like money. I like making a lot of money. I like seeing large deposits in my bank account statement. I like working hard and waking up and seeing that I made $100, $200, $500 or $1,000 overnight.

I love seeing a stack of Benjamins spread across a large table.

If you haven’t experienced making money passively, seeing those numbers seems unreal at first, but quickly becomes addictive. 

I completely understand that many of you aren’t crazy about the concept of money itself and are more interested in what money provides: living abroad, buying cool stuff, experiencing new things, etc. Furthermore, many of you are romantic or philosophical by nature; traveling the world is the means to an end, not making cold cash.

I get you. But I really think that to be successful in this game, you must have a certain interest in generating money. You must want to make more money than you’re making now. You must even have to get to a point where you’re even a little obsessed with making more money every day (and week, month and year) and squeezing an extra few bucks or a hundred from an underperforming part of your business.

Obsession with making a bit more money will help you with everything else we discussed: it will certainly help you with motivation because your 9-5 job simply can’t provide you with all of this money on demand.

There’s an enormous difference between a man who has $1,000 to his name and a man who has $50,000 in his bank account.

Thus, if you want the mother of all motivation, become comfortable with liking money. Become comfortable with forcing yourself to make more money each month. Become obsessed if you can. Everything else will follow.

Closing thoughts

Make no mistake about it. Building a business is hard. Real hard. The way to make it easier is to break down this monumental task into smaller chunks and see where your bottle neck is.

Do you lack motivation? If so, then ask yourself what kind of lifestyle would make you happy that your current 9-5 job situation doesn’t allow.

Are you afraid of the grind? Understand that it’s something you must do and that the work you do today will pay dividends in the future.

Not willing to put yourself out there? Understand that is something you must do or you must work for someone who will.

Not aggressive/shameless enough? If you can’t make me believe that your product is the best, why would I listen to you?

Give up too easily? That just means you don’t want it bad enough. Try again. Be stronger.

Don’t like money? Understand that money is freedom and it solves a ton of problems and makes your life much better in immeasurable ways. The more money you have in your bank account, the more confident and comfortable you will feel about your life.

Interested in building your own passive, location-independent business? Want to avoid needless trial and error? Want to start off on the right foot under proper guidance?

Check out the Maverick Mentorship program. It has helped 100s of guys just like yourself to build their own business. Click here to learn more