my Samcart dashboard
my Samcart dashboard

My husband and I were curled up on the couch, probably watching Family Guy, and I turned to him, and I said, 

“We did it. We hit a million dollars just in time for the end of 2020.”

I never thought I’d make a million dollars in one year. 

And I certainly didn’t think I’d make it at the young age of 25. 

But here we are. 

If you don’t know my story, you might miss just how huge this was for me. 

In my first year of business, I made $63.22. (See this screenshot below…)

Image from iOS (56).jpg

I went from literally having to ask the cashier lady to put back some of my groceries because I couldn’t afford them to making a million… it was hard to describe how I felt in words.

I wanted to scream at the top of a mountain; I wanted to open a hundred bottles of champagne at once and also…I was calm. It felt normal. It felt natural.  

If you want to see more of where I came from and want to get to know my story, you can watch this video here:

But making a million dollars also wasn’t everything I expected…and how I got here was certainly not what I expected. 

I learned a few things along the way; unexpected lessons I wanted to share with you, my dear friend. 

Lesson #1: The highs and lows can be intense.

I don’t think anyone prepares you for the highs and lows once you are playing at a big level.

It’s honestly intense.

I had to learn how to calmly ride out those very high highs and very low lows with a peaceful detachment.

That was not easy to learn how to do, and no one gave me a head’s up about that. For example, at one point over the last year, our Facebook Business Manager got shut down.

This meant we couldn’t advertise on Facebook at all.

(At the time of writing this, we still can’t advertise on Facebook, actually.)

Our primary source of generating leads was taken away from us. Money drastically dried up; terrifying because we have employees I take care of.

We learned so many lessons from that one situation.

But I was able to bounce back quickly (within a month, actually) because I’ve long mastered the art of handing those intense highs and lows.

Lesson #2: Your mindset is going to have to dramatically uplevel.

I cannot even begin to prepare for the expansion that is needed to handle everything that comes with making a lot of money…especially if you’re like me and started out with negative money in your bank account.

I recommend you start expanding right now.

Become flexible with the investments you make, start releasing fear around losing money (you will, trust me. We lost $30,000 at first trying to get Facebook ads figured out for our audience.)

I hang out with a ton of millionaires, and they all have abundant expansive mindsets. They don’t freak out and micromanage their money.

They just treat it like there’s always more coming…because there is.

The trick is to start acting that way before you feel abundant.

We are all self-made, and we frequently talk about how we had to take that scary leap of trusting there was always more money, even when there wasn’t at that exact moment.

Further reading I recommend:
  1. 11 Success Habits of Millionaire Women
  2. 15 Manifesting Mistakes You Might Be Making

Lesson #3: Your product needs to be scalable.

Most products that come across my desk are not truly scalable.

They have deliverability issues or niche issues, or price point issues.

This is one of the biggest things we help our students fix in the Get Clients Now program.

We take a look at your current offer, and we help you adjust it so it will fly off the shelves.

A really good question to ask yourself is, “If I got 100 clients, what would happen?”

Likely you (or your business) would break, right?

That’s a sign your offer isn’t scalable and needs to be adjusted.

We sometimes sign on 20+ clients a day, and our business runs smoothly because I’ve created an offer that’s truly scalable.

Lesson #4: You will need a business coach.

There is no way in hell I could have made a million dollars this soon in my business without a business coach.

I simply had no idea what to do.

My business coach showed me exactly what to do, step-by-step. He saved me from making so many mistakes…and helped me recover when I did make mistakes.

Accountability, teachings, & support; this all contributed to making $1 million this year.

In addition, the community was a huge part of my success.

Hanging out with other successful women helped me see what was possible for me.

I would see them celebrate their sexy launches, sharing all their income numbers.

And because it was possible for them, I decided it was possible for me.

Remember, you are the average of the five people you spend time with, so be smart about where your time is going.

Lesson #5: Your “why” needs to be bigger than the money.

I can’t speak for everyone, but I found that I needed a motive that goes deeper than just “Hit a million dollars.” Studies show that we aren’t much happier after we make $100k/year.


Again, I’m vastly simplifying an in-depth study. But if you want to have motivation once your basic bills are covered, you will need to tap into your impact.

For me, it’s always always always been about helping women be successful.

I am really good at that, for whatever reason, and I feel absolutely obligated to use those talents to support women who are changing the world.

That is my deep why; that is why I do what I do.

So, as you consider the big money, also consider the big impact.

Why do you want to do this?

Lesson #6: Your headaches will increase.

Not literally, although mine did.

But, as your business grows, so do the number of things that could go wrong.

And boy, they do.

Have you ever heard of Murphy’s law? Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.

Whatever can go wrong, will go wrong.

— Murphy’s Law

And that’s not pessimistic, actually, although I know it sounds like an Eyeore attitude.

There’s actually a blissful calm in saying, “Okay, you know what, I’m detached. I’ve prepared for this. No worries, all in a day’s work.” That feels so much better than, “HOLY SH*T, THE WORLD IS CRASHING DOWN AROUND ME. I’M FREAKING OUT. SEND HELP.”

It allows you to respond instead of reacting.

Just knowing that it won’t all be unicorns and rainbows can actually help you handle the inevitable headaches that will come with a scaling business.

Lesson #7: You will need to look for fulfillment elsewhere.

I found that making a million dollars did not add to my fulfillment very much.

It was a nice little moment, but it certainly wasn’t the life-changing thing I thought it would be.

I have found that if you are expecting money to be your source of happiness, you will be very, very disappointed.

Fulfillment comes from something deeper. Man’s Search for Meaning is a book I highly recommend.

Without getting too deep here in this blog post, I would simply suggest that if you expect to get deep, lasting fulfillment from material things (including money), you might be disappointed.

Lesson #8: You might feel misunderstood.

I once read that a critic wrote a letter to Walt Disney telling him, “You just make movies for the money.” Walt Disney replied, “I make money so I can make more movies.”

Many people might misunderstand you and think that you are just in this for the money. They might think you are materialistic. They likely will send you messages expressing their judgment.

I often feel misunderstood online, but I remind myself that it’s only the people who don’t know me that think badly of me.

Those who do know me speak highly of me.

And honestly, at the end of the day, you have to be comfortable with who you are. That’s the best way to handle feeling misunderstood.

I also really like this quote,

“Is it so bad, then, to be misunderstood? Pythagoras was misunderstood, and Socrates, and Jesus, and Luther, and Copernicus, and Galileo, and Newton, and every pure and wise spirit that ever took flesh. To be great is to be misunderstood.”

— Ralph Waldo Emerson, Self-Reliance.

To be great is to be misunderstood.

It’s okay if not everyone understands what you do or why you do it, or what your motives are.

It’s okay.

Remember, one person’s journey is not another’s.

The lessons I learned are important for me. When you make your million dollars, you will probably learn other lessons, and that’s amazing.

One final thought:

I have found infinite joy in serving others always.

I believe I have been rewarded financially because I have contributed far more than I asked for in exchange.

The money is simply a tangible sign of the value I have given over the last eight years.

If you want to make a lot of money, consider starting by answering the question, “Who can I serve?”

Psssst! Want all the behind-the-scenes insight into how I run my successful online million-dollar business?


I’ll share the exact process I used to create $100k cash months in my online business. Just $7!

Written by

Maria Wendt

Maria Wendt is a highly sought-after business coach who specializes in helping ambitious female entrepreneurs get clients online.

Published and interviewed in many different places, including Forbes & Business Insider, she mentors her community of 150,000+ business owners, teaching them exactly how to build a profitable online business.