For all those proverbial 9-to-5 cord-cutters out there who want to work from home or even travel the world as a digital nomad, there are boundless opportunities thanks to the rise of the internet. Today, no matter where you live or what your background, you could make a healthy amount of money online through a variety of means.
Some of these occupations require more dexterity, where others simply require sweat equity and determination to learn the ropes. However, working from home, or on the beach in some remote destination, isn't some made-up fantasy. People from all walks of life are enjoying the benefits and freedom associated with being their own bosses.
Of course, this does require some sincere discipline. Once the zeal and enthusiasm of leaving a full-time job wears off, and reality sets in, understanding that you'll need to make ends meet begins to set in. And if you don't have some serious goals, effective time management skills, and deep down reasons on why you must succeed, you'll experience an uphill battle.
No matter what you decide to do, no matter the occupation you enter or skill set you decide to tackle, as long as you focus on adding a lot of value, you'll succeed. The truth is that most people attempt to do the least amount of work for the greatest return. That's the employee mindset. Entrepreneurs need to think directly opposite to that.
If you're serious about succeeding in whatever occupation you're enthralled in from home, then not only do you need to add value, but you need to add an immense amount of it. If you have value to give and you go out of your way for others, people will notice. And word gets around. But if you take the opposite approach, you can kiss your chances of success in your at-home position goodbye.
Rules for success when working from home
As alluring as it is to work from the confines of your place, there is a real possibility to get distracted. If you lack the discipline or your life is replete with bad habits that tend to set you back, being in an environment that lacks structure is incredibly distracting.
It's hard to stay focused and keep on track or schedule. To succeed, you need to get organized. Set yourself up for success by following a few simple suggestions. That's especially true if you're a traveler or a remote worker on the road in cities across the globe.
And especially when the attraction of a white-sandy beach replete with towering coconut palms swaying in the wind is nearby, or a bustling metropolis that you've just been bursting at the seams to explore is just a hop, skip and a jump away, it can become incredible distracting. So you need to stay disciplined and follow these five rules.
Wake up early
You'll get much more done in the morning hours. You're the most attentive and focused early on. The clutter of the day still hasn't weighed your mind down. Use this time to focus on your most important tasks(MITs) of the day. These are the tasks that will move you closest to your long-term goals.
Set daily goals
Plan your day by setting daily goals. Take your weekly, monthly or yearly goals and break them down by the day. It's easier to plan and not get too overwhelmed when you focus on hitting those daily milestones. This goes a long way when you're attempting to work from home.
Procrastination can zap you of all your productivity. To avoid procrastinating, use the 15-minute rule. Take a timer from your phone or other source, and set it to 15 minutes. Do the one thing you've been putting off for longest, but only for 15 minutes. It builds momentum and helps break patterns, plus it's too small fail at.
Manage your time
You need to effectively manage your time if you're an entrepreneur or remote worker. Find a system that works, such as the quadrant time management system, and implement it. The fewer interruptions and distractions, the more likely you'll be to stay productive and achieve your goals.
Eliminate bad habits
Habits make up 45 percent of human behavior, according to one study. From everything we think, say and feel, even down the websites we visit and apps we use on our phone, are all habit driven. Do an inventory of bad habits and work to eliminate them. Otherwise, they'll get in the way of your productivity while trying to work from home.
Best home-based occupations
While there are likely hundreds of potential occupations you could engage in while working from your own home, these 17 give you the flexibility and opportunity to help you generate an income no matter where you're from.
1. Virtual assistant (VA)
Depending on what country you're from, being a VA can be lucrative when compared to the income status quo. However, even if it doesn't equate to a great income, it is a start. If you've just left your full-time job and you're looking for an entrepreneurial pursuit that doesn't require very much technical training, try your hand at being a VA.
2. Video editor
As the web matures and global connectivity rates increase, video is becoming central to just about every platform. Becoming a well-versed video editor will certainly help you create a sustainable home-based business by tapping into this powerful medium.
3. Virtual tutoring
Tutoring over Skype and FB Messenger is a very real and feasible opportunity to teach students something you know from halfway around the world. The beauty is that you don't need to be in the same room thanks to the explosion of video chat across multiple platforms. You could easily teach a language, a musical instrument or even tutor some subject like mathematics, science or history.
4. Customer service representative
Global corporations are always looking for freelance remote customer service representatives to assist them with their sales and support channels. This is great if you're looking to jump into something part time or full time and you don't need to be working on-site.
5. Web developer
While there are a lot of tools for automation when it comes to web development today, nothing takes the place of being able to code from scratch and develop feature-rich applications that can be deployed for a variety of purposes. You can also make a considerable amount of money by excelling in this field.
6. Translation services
If you're multi-lingual, consider engaging in translation services. Companies and professional entrepreneurs from around the world are constantly seeking translation services. You can use a variety of sites to offer your services. Create a professional website and grab some great testimonials if you want to succeed in the long term in this endeavor.
7. Medical or insurance transcriptionist
If you're great at typing, consider transcribing medical records (or even insurance claims). Large corporations are constantly outsourcing these types of services and it's a simple way that you can make money from home. You don't need to live in any particular place or have much in the way of qualifications.
8. SEO or SEM specialist
If you have knowledge in search engine optimization (SEO) or search engine marketing (SEM), consider offering your services to others. SEO is a highly complex field that involves a vast amount of knowledge and people pay a hefty price for people that know how to rank. SEM means mastering PPC and paid ads like Facebook, Google and YouTube. Both are highly lucrative fields. Find a good course or organization that can assist you in this endeavor.
9. Writing and editing
If you have a knack for writing, try your hand at ghost writing or editing. There are always people looking for good writers and editors all the time. It's a skill that's developed over time, and one that can be mastered with consistent practice. If you're really good, you could even become a copywriter and command thousands of dollars for a sales letter.
10. Franchise owner
Some franchises can be run from home. There are a number of home-based franchises that can be operated with very low overhead and without a physical location. Much of this is in the marketing field, but all you have to do is find the right franchise that fits your needs and run with it. These also often have lower up-front costs than larger and more established physical-location franchises.
11. Data entry jobs
Need something steady that you could do to earn some income from home? You could become a data entry specialist and freelance for a number of companies or professionals. You could even work remote for a large company doing data entry. But keep in mind that this requires accuracy and efficiency.
12. Affiliate marketer
One of the most lucrative at-home jobs that you could engage in is to become an affiliate marketer. An affiliate markets products or services for other companies. Not for themselves. But for an affiliate that has a large list or knows how to command free traffic or is a traffic-and-conversion ninja, affiliate marketing can be extremely financially rewarding.
13. Accountant or bookkeeper
Have a thing for numbers? One job you could easily do from home is to be an accountant or a bookkeeper. You could have private clients or you could work for a large corporation. That's entirely up to you. As long as you're good at what you do, this can easily be done from anywhere in the world.
14. Mystery shopper
You don't need a physical location or a storefront to be a mystery shopper. Mystery shoppers are often freelancers who work for themselves, going from location to location to test the buying or support experience. They even do this online today by shopping on websites and contacting the customer service line.
Want to start a blog to make money online? When done right, blogging can produce tremendous income, but it needs to be combined with email marketing, sales funnels and lead magnets. Find your voice, setup a blog and find products or services you could sell. Forget about ads in the beginning. Or, you could create your own digital products as well. Either way, the potential is massive, but not many can follow through.
16. Social media marketer
Social media marketing is a lucrative skill to have. Businesses, big and small, realize the utility in marketing and appearing on social media. Having enough followers or fans and knowing how to spread the message and get the word out in the digital realm is becoming increasingly important.
17. Graphic designer
It's difficult to find great graphic designers these days. But this is a skill that will always be needed. You could easily create a substantial income by becoming a graphic designer and specializing in things like logos, flyer design, business cards, and so on. While the market is competitive, people will always be willing to pay a hefty premium for great graphic designers.
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This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editors