Do You Start A Lot Of Business Projects But Fail To Finish Them?

Are you relatively new at building an online business or have you been doing it a while?

PYou better finish what you started!Early on when I was just beginning to learn how to do internet marketing, I was constantly starting new projects without completely following through on them till they were finished.   It seemed like I had this non-stop stream of new ideas for ways that I could make money online.  I wanted to try each and every one of them.   Plus, I am the kind of person who takes action right away.  So, I ended up where I had a bunch of projects that were in-progress, but very few were finished.

Maybe you have had that happen to you?

For me it actually goes back a long way.  Throughout my entire adult life (since I was 18), even way before people were doing business on the internet, I have always had this non-stop stream of ideas, especially business ideas.   Sometimes I would even start to write out business plans for a business that I might someday launch.

I would lay down on my living room floor with a 3 ring binder full of blank paper, television off, pencil in hand and begin writing out a business plan for my new idea.  It would consume my full attention for hours.

When I was done for the time being, I would store those 3 ring binders on a bookshelf in my bedroom where they waited patiently for the next chance I had to lose myself in that world again.

I found great pleasure in forming these plans.   I formulated many of these business plans without ever actually acting on any of them.  They were dreams of my future or at least my potential future.

I knew that there was no way I could possibly launch as many businesses as I had ideas for.  It just isn’t humanly possible for one person to do that.   Yet I still derived great satisfaction just from dreaming them up and planning them out.

For years I thought I was some kind of freak though.   It was like I was almost obsessive compulsive about dreaming up these new businesses and actually starting to plan their launches.   I got so much satisfaction from doing this that I would have continued doing it regardless of whether or not I ever made any money from it.   It really was a love affair, or maybe an addiction of some sort.   I felt like I had to do it.  It would get my endorphins pumping.

mind altering drugsWho needs drugs when you can drown your brain in dopamine just by using your creative imagination?  I could get an instant high on demand just by secluding myself and thinking about starting a new business.

My version of hitting the crack pipe was to start visualizing everything I could about a new business idea and how that business would unfold.  I would picture my target audience.  I would visualize how the man or woman was going to react to my product and what thoughts would be going through his or her head.   I would sit and think about how I could position that product in his mind so that I had the perfect position in the market for what that product offered.

The amount of dopamine being pumped into my brain was like a coke head juicing up on an eight ball of blow during a night out on the town.  It just got me jacked.  I mean freaking jacked….whoooooooooh!!!

I am a total crack head when it comes to business.  I just can’t get enough.

Are You Like That Too?

Or am I the only sick puppy out there who does this?

As it turns out, I am not alone.  I recently met a really cool chick online (a personal development coach) from Australia named Pooja who asked me if I had ever heard of a woman named Barbara Sher.    More specifically, she asked if I had ever read Barbara’s book called Refuse to Choose.   I had not read it.

Pooja suggested that I read it.  So I did.  I found it really insightful into my own personal life.  Apparently there are lots of other people out there like me who Barbara classifies as “Scanners”.

Are You A Scanner?Scanners are interested in many different things.  They are fascinated with learning.  They want to learn about everything and usually want to delve deep into that new topic until their thirst for that knowledge is quenched.  Once their thirst is quenched, they feel no need to continue on with it and simply lose interest.  They move on and leave it in their past like flicking a cigarette butt out the window of their car when they are done smoking it.

You see, I have more hobbies and interests than anyone I know.  My interests go way beyond just business. In fact, sometimes when I hear about new things, I become temporarily fascinated by them and want to learn about them in great detail or learn how to do them.  Then once I have learned what feels like a good understanding of that topic, I then begin losing that infatuation.  I become infatuated with something new and move on to that.

Sometimes this natural personality trait comes in very useful.  When I meet new people at parties or some social gathering and they have an interesting job I will then become obsessed with learning as much as I can from that person about their job.   I truly find it fascinating.  I have no intention of getting a job like theirs.  I just find the person incredibly fascinating.  I give them my full attention and try to extract as much personal experience from their brain as I can in whatever time frame I have.   I am like a brain sucker attached to their cranium sucking as much knowledge from them as I can.

People tend to respond favorably to this because it is cool to meet someone else who is interested in your line of work.    And I am honestly interested in so many different kinds of work, that I am easily drawn into these deep conversations.   I think people are genuinely surprised that someone else would be that interested in learning about how they do what they do for a living.


According to the description of what Barbara Sher says “scanners” are like, I guess I am a scanner.

I do almost everything that a typical scanner does.   Maybe I get into things a bit deeper than most scanners do too.  Or maybe I have just gotten really good at processing information quickly so that I can dig in deeper into new topics before my enthusiasm for them starts to diminish.

Over the years, I have managed to develop a system that allows me to manage my tendency to fall in love with whatever new idea pops into my head.    This blog post is getting long though.  So, I’ll talk more about that system in a future blog post.

Barbara SherIf your brain is a non-stop source of business ideas, then you might be a scanner too.   Checkout Barbara and her books.   Especially her book Refuse to Choose.  You might learn something amazing about yourself.

The greatest thing I got out of that first book I read from her, was a feeling of validation that it was okay for me to allow myself to come up with lots of business ideas for businesses that I never end up building.   It is okay to do that.  That was a revelation for me.   You see, I always felt a little bit guilty for doing that because nobody wants to be a dreamer who rarely follows through on his ideas.

But you see, I realized that I am not just a dreamer.   I have actually built businesses from scratch and followed through on them 100% to make their existence a reality.   I am just very selective about which Ideas I want to put that much effort into.  And, you can’t really know which ideas are that good until you start planning them out.   So, it is okay to start planning a new business idea and then end up abandoning it.   If you abandon it, it is because it wasn’t as good of an idea as you originally thought.

Your natural instincts are going to force you to follow through on the really good ones, the ones that have a real shot at becoming great businesses.  So let yourself dream.  Record those dreams on paper (or in a My Documents folder in my case).   Let your ideas flow because those ideas are a source of great personal joy for you.  There is absolutely nothing wrong with allowing yourself to entertain those ideas.  You should encourage it.

And, if you think you are a scanner like I am, please please please drop me an email.  I would like to have a chat with you and maybe become friends.   We can share ideas.  You would probably like to learn more about the systems that I use to manage my never ending flow of ideas.

My systems allow me to know which ideas are more likely to make money.  Plus you will also find great satisfaction in doing the work you are doing.  What could be better than making money doing what you love doing?

The online business world is ideal for people who are scanners.  The internet offers us an easy way to get our pleasure fix (explore new business ideas) while still giving us the opportunity to make money from the right opportunity.

Let your wonderfully creative imagination set you free my friend.  Let it enrich your life as that precious gift was intended to do.

If you want to talk more about how I manage my flow of ideas, then just send me an email or ask about it in the comments below.

2 Responses to Do You Start A Lot Of Business Projects But Fail To Finish Them?

  1. What an entertaining post! I am married to a scanner. People call him a “dreamer” but he has successfully written books, ran his own business and now working on a project that is “almost done” he he he!

    But, married to me, I kind of crack a small whip on the poor guy. I do give him deadlines and he doesn’t quite meet them. Gee…something always comes up. But now I had hired him a coach to complete his task. Pretty pricey at that and he is working like a fiend.

    As for me, I could be a scanner, if I allowed myself to be one. This is why I was laughing as I read this article. I seen a lot of me in it. I run 2 businesses so I cannot have the luxury to scan. I did go the extra mile to get hypnotized …then down loaded a hypnosis series of business and focus.

    I must say, it helped a lot and I can sit down and do my work in a more organized fashion these days, even when I have to switch hats.

    I know that feeling of dopamine in the brain. I get it every time I accomplish something.

    Thanks for the most entertaining article I’ve read in a long time.


    • Ted says:

      Hi Donna,

      Two things first – thanks for the Tweet and the comment.

      I think that most people will find a bit of “scanner” in them. In fact, when I first heard about the term, I assumed that everyone was already like that to some extent. As I read more about it though, I realized there are some of us who take things to an extreme. In Barbara’s book she describes different types of scanners depending on certain habits that you have. I could identify parts of myself in most of the different types though.

      Hypnosis for focus – is an interesting idea. That gives me a new business idea…lol

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