What bloggers can learn from the life of Thomas Edison

Thomas Edison was one of the greatest inventors of the early 20th Century. Edison played a role in the creation of many of the things we use today, whether it is the light bulb, alkaline batteries, sound recorder, or many other things.

In fact, even the multi-billion dollar company General Electric was started by Edison!

In this piece, I will share with you 5 lessons from Edison’s life that you can apply today and become a great blogger.

1 – Innovation is not enough to Win! You Need Market Validation.

When Edison was a young man and was thinking of making his first commercial invention, he thought of what would be some of the innovations he could bring about.

At the time, he saw that politicians arguing in the assembly houses often had to shout when casting their votes on a particular issue. He then thought it would be a great idea to create a voting machine that would let them cast their vote.

He then decided that he would create a voting machine. He spent a couple of years working on that. Finally, when the product was ready and perfected, he introduced it to the politicians.

But no one wanted to buy it.

He went to another set of politicians and then another set but he faced rejection everywhere.

Finally, he asked them why they didn’t want to buy it when it would clearly save time and energy.

They said – “Because we want to shout and argue!”

That day Edison had a huge realization. He had only focused on innovation but not on validation as to whether people even wanted what he was making. He had fallen in love with his idea and started working blindly towards it and failed as a result.

That day he told himself – “From now on, I am never going to make something that nobody wants.”

2 – You don’t have to be the first at something, to win!

Edison didn’t actually invent the light bulb, but he was the first one to make the light bulb commercially viable. Before Edison, there were many who actually got a light bulb to work, but they never could make it stay lit long enough so that it was practically usable by people.

Similarly, Google did not make the first search engine. There were many search engines before Google like Yahoo and Altavista. However, Google was the first search engine that completely solved the need of the market.

There have been electric cars for a long, but Elon Musk’s Tesla was the first company that revolutionized through its manufacturing and excellent marketing.

Conclusion: You don’t have to be the first one to create a monopoly. While writing content be relentless and be consistent, and you can dispute the top pages in the time to come.

3 – To Win, Remember Quality comes through Quantity.

Edison is primarily known for Inventing the first commercially successful Electric Bulb, the Sound Recorder, the alkaline battery, etc.

But do you know the number of patents and inventions that Edison actually had? He had 1093 patented inventions!

Edison had incorporated the process of market validation while making his inventions, but despite that not every invention was very successful commercially.

But were those inventions a waste? No. Because every time he made an invention, regardless of whether or not it was commercially successful, it made him a better inventor and it made him even more in touch with what the market actually wanted.

It took him 1093 patented inventions to get lucky a handful of times, but the times he got lucky were enough to make up for all the hard work he put in.

Blogger be relentless and keep writing. Every success and failure will help you to understand the market more closely. Analyzing the incoming traffic on your written pages will give you a clue to understanding market demands and will give more penetration to your keyword targetting.

Quality comes through quantity. Don’t wait for the perfect idea, because there is no perfect idea. There is only perfect execution and learning to execute perfectly happens as a result of working on your craft, day in and day out for years.

Keep on writing good content. There you are.

4 – To Win, Have the Mental Strength To Move On When Things Go Wrong.

In 1914, there was a huge explosion in a factory in New Jersey that Edison owned.

Many people from the fire department came to extinguish the resulting fire but nothing could be done as it was a chemical fire that was almost impossible to stop. Having tried everything that was possible, Edison just watched all his hard work go up in flames.

His son stood next to him. Then Edison told his son to get his mother and friends as they would never see such a humongous fire like that again. He told that to his son as if the fire was a spectacle to be enjoyed. Shocked by what Edison said, his son said, “Our entire factory is completely gone and you want everyone to enjoy the spectacle?”

Then Edison replied — Yes, our entire factory is being burnt down to the ground, but the good thing is that with that factory being burnt down, 20 years of my mistakes have also gone up in flames. We shall start afresh tomorrow.

This shows the unbelievable resilience of Thomas Edison. 20 years of his work had gone up in flames in that factory and yet he shifted perspective to dismiss them as 20 years of mistakes and resolved to start again the next day.

Even if there was negativity going through Edison’s mind, he did not let that affect the team and inspired them to start afresh.

Next year his company made an even greater.

At times bloggers will feel that efforts are too slow, and they will not see traffic in scale. Shut down the negative idea. Be relentless, right more content. Don’t write fluff. Write for the audience. Engage them. Put in efforts for keywords in demand.

5 – Encouragement and Self Belief Greatly Increase Your Chances Of Winning!

When Thomas Edison was a child, he came back home and brought a note with him from school. As he was dyslexic as a child, he couldn’t read it properly and asked his mother to read it. His mother looked at it and looked surprised. Edison asked what the issue was.

She said that the school had written that her son was a genius and no teacher in the school was good enough to teach him. So, there was no need for him to come to school and she could teach him herself.

His mother started teaching Edison, encouraged him when he had problems and helped him become the scientific genius he would grow up to be.

 Several decades later when Thomas Edison had become one of the biggest names of his era and his mother had passed away, he happened to be going through his old things. When he checked his old cupboard, he happened to find the letter the school had sent to his mother.

Edison opened the letter and read it.

The letter wrote – “Your child is mentally retarded and is not good enough for school. He is expelled.”

Edison was extremely moved after reading the letter and he wrote:

Thomas Edison was a mentally retarded kid whose mother’s belief and constant encouragement turned him into a GENIUS!

Even when things are not going good, the right words of encouragement and belief in people can propel them to unbelievable heights!

Here is a recap of what we learnt in this article

1)      Innovation is not enough for winning. You need market validation

2)      You don’t need to be the first to win

3)      To win, remember quality comes through quantity.

4)      To Win, Have The Mental Strength To Move On When Things Go Wrong

5)      Encouragement and Self Belief Greatly Increase Your Chances Of Winning!

I hope you have enjoyed the lessons I have shared in this article using stories from Thomas Edison’s life. If you apply these lessons in your own life or with people around you, success is sure to follow you!

Content writers, machine learning will not completely eliminate you

If all your friends jumped off a bridge would you follow them?

Machine learning algorithm: Yes.

Yet another proof that Machine Learning has achieved the level of performance observed in the average child.

It’s not about outperforming the best of us, it’s about outpacing the rest of us.

Real content writing will remain a remarkable career in the future.

Just be real, don’t act.

You will scale your and someone else’s online presence.

Content writers, you are not an astronomer but an influencer

Astronomy, unlike, any other science deals with objects that are distant, and not in our reach.

Many marketers and content writers make the same mistake they become astronomers to their business or blog.

Our biased media also make us believe that we are just passive or mute spectators and many things are not in our direct influence.

Content writers shouldn’t make the same mistake.

You have the influence.

You not only write, but you can change perspectives and lives.

Words are Powerful.

When you write realize that you can be empathic, thoughtful, relevant, insightful, and caring while creating content.

You will make a difference.

Context shouldn’t be dropped, and you can enchant your readers.

Remember, you are not an astronomer, but an influencer.

Content writers, ignore arithmetic and be a mathematician

The School system is outdated.

A school that focuses on arithmetic bores the Kids through the chores.

Arithmetic is boring, but mathematics is magic, less memorized, and more of understanding.

Contents writers can become magicians too. Create what your users will love to read.

Engage your readers. Be thoughtful when you create.

Your content should not be boring like arithmetic, but magical like mathematics.

Why Correct Compass and Consultancy from the expert is Important?

Let me begin with a story.

A supervisor of a movers and packers team is always pushing his team of people to do a lot of hard work without thinking.

In one such instance, they arrive at a building and they have to move the bed of the client to the 18th floor. Unfortunately, when they arrive, the electricity in that building is not working. The team members recommend that they wait till the electricity comes back.

But the supervisor says, “Boys! Don’t whine! Work hard! This is the chance to chance to show the client how awesome we are! We are going to take this entire bed up to the 18th floor using the stairs!”

Reluctantly, the team starts taking the heavy bed up the stairs, slowly, step by step. By the second floor, they are totally exhausted. Yet the supervisor keeps pushing them to lift the bed up and take it up floor by floor. After almost 2 hours of massive physical effort, they still haven’t reached the 18th floor and the electricity still doesn’t come back.

Finally, the supervisor’s phone rings. The person on the other end is the client who is screaming at him for not having arrived. The supervisor tries to reason with him and tells him he trying his best to bring the bed up the building and is just about to reach. But the client is mad and finally tells something to the supervisor that shocks him!

The client hangs up the phone and the supervisor still looks shocked. The team wonders what happened.

The supervisor says – “Boys, I have good news and bad news.”

Team Member – “What’s the good news?”

Supervisor – “We were supposed to go 18 floors, we have reached the 16th floor.”

Team Member – “Awesome! But what’s the bad news?”

Supervisor – “We are in the Wrong Building!”

Not doing ANY Research WILL Hurt Your Business! Because hard work WITHOUT knowing the right Direction will give you ZERO results.

Learning is important because it teaches you the right direction!

If you were to go on a road trip from your city to some unknown city hundreds of kilometers away, what would you do?

Would you do trial and error? Would you take every single road one by one, fail to reach your destination, return back and then attempt this over and over again until you reach your destination?

It would take you weeks if not months if you tried to reach your destination this way! Also, you would waste all your life savings on petrol/diesel!

What would you really do? You would use Google Maps or use your Car’s GPS to find out the best and shortest way to reach your destination. In the years before technology, you would use a paper map to find the right road and then make course corrections by asking people along the way, what the right direction was!

This is what LEARNING is! We know that using Google Maps or asking certain people about the direction to someplace makes you get there ten times faster.

Similarly learning from mentors, coaches, or reading relevant books will help you achieve your career goals TEN TIMES FASTER!

If you don’t learn or work without knowledge, forget about success because no matter how hard you work, you will always end up in the wrong building!!

Even if you manage to get some success through years of trial and error, you will realize that by the time you finally make some progress, it will already be time for you to RETIRE!

But if you decide today that you will allow a certain percentage of time to learn from people you look up to in the company and the industry or learning from coaches or reading the right books (Nonfiction skill development books, not fictional books like Harry Potter!), you will quickly arrive on the Success Expressway which will get you to your destination way faster than anyone else!

Massive Success is really that simple!

Reset WordPress password manually

It is tough when you are locked and facing password issues, and can’t handle password change through the WordPress front end.

Moving forward. WordPress is PHP and database, we can make changes through the database dashboard.

Addendum:

A database is a cupboard, and all the information that your websites deal with in terms of files URL, images URL, content, username, and passwords is stored there. Imagine you are opening the database cupboard, and make necessary changes such as insertion, deletion, and updation.

At the time when I have written this article, my website is hosted on hostgator.com. I am reproducing certain snapshots, which are connected to the causality of theirs event. In case you find any disagreements do not hesitate to write in comments. We will try to help you restore the password.

Step 1. Login to your CPanel, and find phpMyAdmin.

Step 2. Once you click on phpMyAdmin you will, after few seconds, see this or a similar web page. Once you see this page, kindly select your database where you want to make changes. If you are not sure, which is your database then this link will help you identify which database is yours.

Step 3. Once you select the database, you will see a screen like this as shown in the image below. You have to find wp_users. wp_ is a prefix, which is used by default by WordPress installation, in your case, it can be different based on your own selection at the time of installation or your hosting company policy. Now click on wp_users.

Step 4. Once you have clicked on wp_users or your version of the database users table you will see this screen. Now click on “Edit”.

Step 5. The password change process can be best described through a series of animations. We have done an animated course of actions so that you can grasp the transition easily.

Ensure once you have selected the new password you have also chosen the MD5 from the dropdown.

Listen, content writers — Do not blame yourself

Content writing is tough because it is a consistent process. You can only be victorious if you have consistency for a long period of time.

One who can be successful at content writing and in a fitness regime can be successful in any sphere of life.

Dear Content Creators, Have you ever worked for some of your websites so hard, only to have your efforts fall apart before your eyes?

Throughout my one decade as an Internet marketing consultant, I’ve seen thousands of clients tear themselves down with the same emotional backlash.

If you fail to scale your website, you blame yourself. If you miss a financial target, you tell yourself you can never handle your wallet.

When you’re struggling with your website scale, you think you’ll never achieve visitors on your website.

So you’ve convinced yourself that you “can’t” do it, it “won’t” work out, or you should just “give up” on the life you want.

None of this is true.

When you’re working towards amazing new levels of blogging, e-commerce, and any other website, it’s your own mind that starts telling you that you “can’t” or “won’t” succeed.

And before you know it, you’ve defeated yourself.

All these nays saying are the result that your mind is in emergency mode. Emergency mode protects us from dangers and also hinders the clarity of future vision.

The good news is, you can reject this unhelpful subconscious programming and take back control of your mind.

You have to be realistic with your website, its scaling, promotion, content strategy.

All this comes with, a plan, execution, and understanding that bumps are inevitable when you move forward.

Throughout my decade-old career, I’ve been helping a client to promote their website and scale their content.

Now, I’d like to help you do the same. This is the reason I have decided to dedicate a full section, and series of free tutorials, for content writers in the next 21 days.

Bloggers, speed breakers are not obstacles

You are either writing or not. Daily, we have to make that decision.

Perhaps you have decided.

You are writing.

Speed breakers are real. They are unavoidable, and they hurt. Speed breakers cannot be denied.

Bloggers, speed breakers are not obstacles

A speed breaker that stops us to move forward is an obstacle.

Quite often, the only difference between speed breaker and obstacle is our interpretation and final decision on them.

Obstacle needs to be surmounted, daily.

You have decided.

Move forward.

How to create a custom WordPress search form

WordPress already offers a default get_search_form() function that can be reproduced in any part of the template, but that is constrained to the designed offered by the WordPress core team. Limiting to that design will be an injustice to the highly customizable WordPress content management system.

There is an easy fix.

Step 1: Create a searchform.php file in your root directory of the theme, and

Step 2: Put your custom form there. Here we have given an example:

<form class="tform" id="searchform" method="get" action="<?php echo esc_url( home_url( '/' ) ); ?>">
  <div class="tinput">
    <input class="email-search-box" name="s" size="40" type="text" placeholder="Search"/><input class="email-search-btn" value="Search" type="submit"/>
  </div>
</form>

Writer’s block —Here are easy steps to be creative each day

So you’re hyped and eager to pour yourself into writing.

Maybe you have too many ideas, or maybe not enough — either way, you don’t know where to start. That’s where I was just a few weeks ago.

To execute on the momentum and capture the spur of inspiration I felt, I looked into writing advice from some of Medium’s most prolific writers such as Tim Denning and Nicolas Cole.

Combining their tips, I built a relevant, in-depth content map and generated over 60 article ideas within one day.

Let me walk you through the exact steps I took.

Step 1: Pick 2–3 Topic “Buckets” to Focus On

Maybe you already know what topics you want to write about.

Maybe you don’t. Or you have too many ideas.

Tim Denning says it’s best to pick just two topics.

Nicolas Cole suggests you pick one niche topic and one broad topic, as well as one “industry topic”.

I was less worried about the industry one. Maybe, like me, you come from an industry you don’t necessarily want to write about.

What’s more important is to find one thing that speaks to everyone and another thing that speaks to a very specific set of people.

If you write only about broad topics, you’re competing with a lot of other writers and it will be harder to get a foothold. When you write about niche topics, you’ll get traction much more quickly, but you’ll only reach so many people. A mix of the two seems to do the trick.

Here are my topic choices: mental health (broad), careers & life (very broad), psychedelics (very niche).

Step 2: Map Out, Rank, and Break Down Your Topics

In this next step, you’ll branch out further from your core buckets.

Your content map will have three levels: buckets, topics, and sub-topics.

The easiest way to get to levels two and three is to draw a classical mindmap. I did it in Excel, in true consultant fashion, but on paper may be easier.

There are no limits, but don’t go rogue. Specificity wins. A handful of topics per bucket and a few ideas for sub-topics per topic are more than enough.

In the next step, you’ll want to rank your ideas on the topic level.

Give each topic two scores from 1–5: one score for how badly you want to write about it, and another one for how much you think readers will care about it. This, again, comes from Nicolas Cole’s book on online writing.

Use the total score to rank topics within your core buckets and you’ll have guidance on which topics to prioritize first. We only need to rank topics (level two) and not subtopics (level three) at this stage.

Here’s what the final list looks like for me:

Mental health: Addiction & recovery (the science of addiction, healing trauma, eating disorders), emotional wellness (coping, communication, empaths)

Careers & life: Finding purpose (intuition, creativity), happiness habits (simplicity, lifestyle choices, conscious living)

Psychedelics: Lessons learned (from personal journeys), advice for beginners, science (neuroscience, consciousness, biology), culture, politics

Note: Don’t be too worried about your content map being “MECE” (mutually exclusive and collectively exhaustive). You’re not writing an academic paper.

Step 3: Brainstorm Article Ideas Based On 5 Common Types of Articles

This is where we get into the fun part, generating titles for actual articles.

Again, Nicolas Cole has made it easy for us by outlining the five types of articles in online writing:

  1. Actionable Guide
  2. Opinion
  3. Curated List
  4. Story
  5. Credible Talking Head

Number 5, the credible talking head, refers to things that simply get read because the author has credibility in the field. The other types don’t need much further elaboration. If you’re curious to learn more, buy Cole’s book.

Now, the fun part. Go through your sub-topics and come up with a few ideas for article titles for each one. You’ll quickly have 50+ ideas.

As a general rule, you’ll want to find titles and themes that trigger emotional reactions in your readers: either they want to be or do something badly, or they badly don’t want to be or do something.

Don’t worry too much about the headline. This exercise is just about capturing potential themes, you can brainstorm titles when you do the actual writing.

At the end of this exercise, you should have a nice long list. But there’s one more thing to make your content map even more relevant.

Step 4: Review Highlights from Previous Articles for More Inspiration

This is probably my favorite tip of them all.

Tim Denning shared it in a podcast. It’s super simple but highly effective.

In your highlights, people tell you what they want to read about.

Go through all your previous articles (especially those with traction) and take note of sections that were highlighted by multiple people.

This is what intrigued them, what they want to remember, what they want to come back to. This is what they want more of from you.

When I went through this exercise, my first viral article became a treasure chest for follow-up stories. I generated at least 10 more articles ideas, most of which were neatly slotted into my content map.

This is all you need to do and within no time, you have a fully fleshed-out content map with articles you want to write and people want to read.

You’ll never run out of ideas.

And when you do, you just repeat the four steps.

Happy brainstorming!