A long time ago I sent out a survey to my subscribers with some interesting questions I’d been wondering about.
One of the questions was: “What would you like to ask me over a cup of coffee?”
Now… my subscribers are awesome. They really are. Lots of people responded to my questions and I learned a lot.
One topic that came up again and again was: how did you get started?
And that’s a very interesting question because I originally got started in 1994 when I had just finished my university studies.
There were no websites.
And I had no computer.
A lot has changed since… and your experience is likely to differ (I hope you have a computer!!!)… but the principles I applied are exactly the same.
Here we go:
It was the last semester of my final year in university and I had my future planned: I was applying for jobs in electronics engineering.
Right after my last final exam (on that very day!) I went to the hospital and had my first baby.
One look at his face… his huge, blue eyes… his cute little nose… and my heart pounded hard.
There was NO way I was going to leave him to somebody else to take care of.
I told my husband, “I’m going to stay home with our baby.”
Problem: We needed my income.
How could I make money from home and take care of this tiny infant at the same time?
Back then, Internet was mostly for university students and staff.
There were no websites (I saw my first website in 1995).
And we sure didn’t have guides on how to make money online.
Hey – I didn’t even have a computer!
Instead, I would connect to the university’s server using a keyboard, a monitor, and a modem.
So I did the only thing I could back then… I looked through newsgroups (that’s how the early forums were called).
Luck was on my side, and I found a freelance offer from a statistics professor. It involved sending emails to other university professors and offering them his newest statistics software.
(Today, that would be considered spam but things were different then.)
He would write the emails, and I would send them out.
But there was a caveat.
He wanted me to work for him for 2 weeks for free without any pay. If he liked what I did – he would hire me.
I remember going to my father and asking him what to do.
He said, “What are you earning now?”
The answer was of course nothing.
And I immediately understood.
I was not earning anything at that point.
And I needed to do SOMETHING that will bring me closer to my goal (which was earning an income while staying home with my baby).
And this was it.
So I applied.
I worked for free for 2 weeks. The professor was happy. And he started paying me.
In fact, we kept this arrangement for a number of years.
And those years I worked for this professor made me enough income to allow me to stay home with my kid and the ones born after him…
…which was what I had wanted.
It also gave me the confidence to apply for more and higher-paying gigs…
and those gigs led me in a very weird way to having my own passive-income-generating affiliate sites (I’ll tell you more about it another time).
I have a lot more to tell.
Like how I decided to quit everything and switch to passive income.
And how many years I struggled to make that work.
But as I said – that’s for another time.
In the meantime, remember this:
If there’s something you want, like staying at home with your children or living the life YOU want to live, go for it.
It doesn’t matter if you don’t have time (I had a newborn baby I was taking care of)
It doesn’t matter if you don’t have money (I had no spare money to invest)
It doesn’t matter if you don’t have skills (I knew absolutely nothing about marketing and making money online)
Don’t give up.
Follow your dreams.
And take advantage of the right opportunities that bring you closer to your goals.
To your success,
1 thought on “How I Made My First Income Online… In 1994… With No Investment, No Experience… and Not Even a Computer!”
I think I was in first grade in 1994 and had no idea the era I was growing up in until now!
I could have been posting about recess and even my baseball games. I could have made plenty of articles about playing outside with friends. I am betting that most children today, know nothing about kick the can!
Well, as of today am 30 years old and only have a little bit more insight into how vast online ventures can be. I have started with this online venture about ten months ago and determined! I am finally getting more of an understanding of what a scam online is to something that is legit!
I never would have seen myself here pushing myself forward, but childcare costs exceeded my pay, plus being single with the full-time responsibility of three children came to my limit.
At 27 years old, I was a single guy who worked full time, and now at 30 I am a single guy with 3 kids, and persistence is key to success, even if you are overwhelmed.