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TPE #100: 29 lessons about growth, PPC, mindset & more

Jul 08, 2024

Read time: 6 minutes

GM, Miles here with issue #100 of The PPC Edge!

I have something special for you today, but first let’s look back to where we started.

What a crazy ride it’s been since the first issue on June 27th, 2022:



When I started The PPC Edge 2 years ago, PPC Mastery didn’t exist…

And I hadn’t even spoken to Bob yet… Like ever!

In this 2-year period, I’ve developed myself like crazy:

  • The PPC Hub grew to 1.200+ members.
  • Thousands of students went through our courses.
  • The PPC Edge grew to nearly 20K subscribers.


I constantly evolved and reinvented myself as a Google Ads Specialist to be able to serve you at the highest level possible.

In today’s issue, I want to reflect on my top 29 insights and lessons from this wild journey as it relates to Google Ads, marketing, personal growth, mindset, emotions, growth, and more.

I hope you find it valuable.

Next week, I’ll be back with die-hard Google Ads strategies!

Thanks for being an awesome subscriber of The PPC Edge — I truly appreciate you.

Let’s dive in!



Here’s what I’ve learned about growth:


1: The best investment you can make is in yourself.

Since I started my freelancing career in 2020, I have invested tens of thousands of Euros in courses, training programs, and coaching to upgrade my knowledge. Some were great, others bad. But generally speaking, investing in yourself yields the highest ROI. I focus on developing skills that compound and stack on top of each other.


2: Learning never stops — aim to get 1% better every day.

I aim to become 1% better every day. This may not sound like a lot, but just look at this insane graph from James Clear that illustrates what happens when you become 1% better or worse every day for a year:

  • If you get 1% better every day for a year, you end up >37X better!
  • And if you get 1% worse every day for a year, you’re finished.



The 1% Rule by Tommy Baker is a fantastic book that goes into depth on how to get 1% better every single day.



3: Be ambitious, but also grateful for what you have.

I am super ambitious. I always want more, more, more.

I can’t help it — it’s part of my DNA (probably because of my American side).

But… I’ve also learned to be grateful for what I already have, to stay grounded, and to find joy in the little things.

So I’m constantly finding the balance between ambition, and gratitude. That’s where I am the happiest.

More is fun, but not the answer for lasting happiness. But it’s also not evil to want more. It doesn’t make you greedy, it just shows character and ambition (as long as you can still find joy in the little things).


4: Joy lies in the pursuit of a goal, not in the accomplishment of it.

We all know the cliche “It’s about the journey, not the destination”. I believe it’s a cliche because it’s true!

I’ve learned to fall in love with the process. The end result doesn’t matter, because it’s a consequence and natural side effect of the process and taking action every day.

Dickie Bush taught me to train my brain to release dopamine for the act of doing something, not for the result it’s driving or not.

For example: I “reward” myself for hitting publish on a post on LinkedIn, not for the amount of impressions it’s getting. Simple trick with a huge impact on how I feel.


5: First, you focus on personal growth. Then, you grow through contribution (aka helping others).

When you’re young and inexperienced, you must take in as much knowledge as you can to grow. But later on, as you get more experienced, how you grow shifts from helping yourself to helping others.

I’ve noticed this in my life as well: consuming more content isn’t the only growth path anymore. I shifted my focus from helping myself to helping others, and it’s made a huge difference in my personal growth (these 100 issues of The PPC Edge are a testament to that).

Want to know more? Here’s an awesome episode of the Own Your Future Podcast with Dean Graziosi and Russell Brunson.


6: Teacher learns most.

I learned this from Robin Sharma and it’s stuck with me ever since: “teacher learns most”.

What it means: you learn a lot from teaching your craft to others, because it forces you to distill endless information into bite-sized, understandable chunks.

It forces you to streamline your thoughts and ideas. You’ll quickly find the holes in your understanding of your expertise.

Seriously, try explaining how Smart Bidding works to a newbie. Or why Search isn’t spending when you run pMax next to it.

By teaching others, you learn the most.


7: Your income is directly tied to your ability to solve other people’s problems.

This is such a universal truth. Want to make more money? Learn how to solve other people’s problems. The more complex the problem, the more you can earn. And this multiplies with speed: the faster you can help people solve their complex problems, the more you’ll earn.

  • Want to earn more as a freelancer? Solve bigger problems.
  • Want to earn more in-house? Solve bigger problems.



Here’s what I’ve learned about mindset:


8: Nobody’s gonna save you — you are responsible for everything in your life (the good and the bad).

I’m a big believer in the concept of “Extreme Ownership”: everything that happens in my life is my fault and responsibility, even if it’s not technically my fault.

It’s easy to blame other people or circumstances, but that just makes me a victim. I like to take control of my life, and I do that through extreme ownership.


9: Believe in yourself and have unwavering self-confidence — you can do anything you set your mind to.

I believe self-confidence is a superpower. Many people are insecure on a deep, personal level. I’m lucky to have two parents who are both super self-confident, so I take after them. When my siblings and I got “punished” as kids, my mother always told us “I’m speaking to your BEHAVIOR, not your PERSON.”

Such a hack to let children understand they can get reprimanded for bad behavior, while leaving their character and self-confidence intact.

In other words: your behavior sucks, you don’t suck as a person!


10: Be kind.

I won’t get all “kumbaya” right now but in my mid-twenties I realized it pays off to be kind. So I stopped complaining, stopped gossiping, and treat everyone with respect.

You can see someone’s character by the way they treat the janitor. Take note.



11: An obsessive personality is a feature, not a bug.

I have an obsessive personality. Dickie Bush taught me this is a feature, not a bug.

Why? Because people who can obsess over things are generally those who perform the best.

As a kid, I played a LOT of video games (Runescape, World of Warcraft, FIFA, etc.). I totally obsessed over them. Was I addicted? Probably… But I also learned a lot from them.

And I transfer the same obsessive character traits to Google Ads and building PPC Mastery: I totally obsess over my content, helping the members of The PPC Hub, and providing you with the insights that will take your career to the next level.

So if someone tells you to stop obsessing over something, kindly tell them this is a feature, not a bug.


Learning to learn.

Here’s what I’ve learned about learning to learn:


12: Be careful who you take advice from.

Earlier in my career, I would literally buy every course I came across on YouTube and Facebook. Some were great, but a lot of them were bad.

Because I was still finding my voice online, I was trying to copy what others were doing. After a while, I realized I wasn’t showing my real self.

Nowadays, I’m more careful with whom I take advice from (it’s generally only from people I look up to and who are a few steps ahead of me).


13: Don’t give advice if people don’t ask for it.

I learned the hard way that nobody likes to get unsolicited advice. So I stopped giving my advice if someone didn’t ask for it.

There’s always resistance when you tell people they should act a certain way, even if you have the best intentions for them in mind.

So stop giving advice, and start leading by example.


Dealing with emotions.

Here’s what I’ve learned about dealing with emotions:


14: Emotions need to be released — do not push them under the rug.

As a man, I’ve never been great at feeling or expressing emotions. My natural coping mechanism is to push them under the rug and ignore how I’m feeling.

I learned the hard way that this is very harmful in the long run.

Whether that means getting angry, feeling excited, or crying your eyes out — emotions need to be released. You’ll always feel better after.

Suppressing emotions is bad for your health.


15: Haters gonna hate.

I’ve grown my LinkedIn following to >50K in the past 2 years, and I’ve had my fair share of haters. I pay them no mind: haters gonna hate!

I keep doing me, and I’ll continue to focus on providing value to my community.

As Kanye West said in Good Life: “50 told me: go ahead switch your style up, and if they hate then let them hate and watch the money pile up!”



16: Protect your boundaries, say no often.

As I’ve grown my personal brand and business, I’ve noticed more and more people want a piece of my time.

  • “Hey man, can I pick your brain? It’s only 1 hour, cmon man”.
  • “Hey man, love what you’re doing, wanna promote my tool?”


I’m sure everyone has good intentions, but I have learned to protect my boundaries and time. I hardly ever jump on calls with people to stay focused on the main goals.

In the beginning, saying no might feel like you’re an asshole, but it’s actually the opposite. You signal to yourself and others that you value your time, and people respect that.

Just don’t be a dick when you say no — do it in a kind way. I typically say something along the lines of (I learned this on the Millionaire Mindcast podcast):

“Thanks for your kind words and reaching out. I’m super busy with lots of projects right now and I’m trying to stay focused so I’m minimizing calls. I’ll have more time in 6-12 weeks, feel free to circle back by then!”


Building epic products.

Here’s what I’ve learned about building epic products:


17: If it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.

I learned this from Alex Hormozi: if it’s worth doing, it’s worth spending more time and energy on making it A++.

We apply this to all of our courses: we only deliver A++ products and will never sacrifice quality for speed.


18: Show, don’t tell.

Earlier in my career, I always told everyone my plans. But talk is cheap… In 2021 or so, I came across a podcast by Eelco de Boer in which he talked about how he never tells anyone about his plans. He focuses on building and shows people what’s he doing, instead of telling them.

Got a new business idea? Work on it — build it — show people. Don’t go around telling everybody.

Talk is cheap. Show, don’t tell.


19: Sell before you make.

I worked on my first Google Ads course in 2021 (in Dutch at the time). This was long before PPC Mastery existed. I spent months building the curriculum and filming all the modules. And then when I wanted to sell it, I had crickets.

Nobody wanted to buy my course…

So now, instead, I always “sell before I make”. In other words: I validate an idea before I spend time creating a course.

If I reach a certain milestone, I’ll go ahead and create the course. If I don’t, I’ll simply refund the initial buyers and I didn’t waste any time.


20: Feed the community first, then the masses.

I learned this recently from an epic thread on X about how Fred Again sells out his music shows without spending any money on marketing.

One of the key insights: “feed the community first, then the masses”.

We apply this to PPC Mastery as well: first, we “feed” The PPC Hub. Then the wider community, and then the rest if there are any leftovers.

Figure out for yourself who you need to feed first to keep your business healthy (usually it’s a mix of your clients, colleagues, and the community).



Navigating the fast-changing PPC world.

Here’s what I’ve learned about navigating the fast-changing PPC world:


21: Be skeptical, but practical.

You may feel like Google doesn’t always have the best interest of advertisers in mind. They’re pushing Broad Match again? AARs? Demand Gen? Performance Max?

This can make you skeptical. And you should be.

But… Being TOO skeptical can actually be harmful.

I always try to find the perfect balance between being skeptical, while still being practical.

What that means: in the back of my mind I understand that Google doesn't always have advertisers’ best interests in mind. But I am also practical enough to test everything for myself.

Then, after gathering the data, I can make my own decisions.


22: Be adaptable to change.

I’m just gonna put this quote here, it says it all:



23: Be curious.

Curiosity is a superpower, especially with Google Ads. I always test everything for myself so I can draw my own conclusions, and so should you.

Instead of saying Broad Match and pMax suck, try testing those features every 3-6 months.

Be curious about how Google Ads works on a deeper level — that’s where your competitive edge comes from.


24: Don’t complain.

This is helpful in life in general, but especially with Google Ads: don’t complain. It’s not gonna get you anywhere.


25: The moment you think you know it all is the moment you start to fall behind.

Stay curious and never lose your hunger to develop yourself. The moment you think you know everything is the moment you start to fall behind. In our fast-changing PPC world, new and hungry talent is constantly on the rise and ready to take your spot.

Stay curious and keep investing in yourself to keep the axe sharp!


Making mistakes and failing.

Here’s what I’ve learned about making mistakes and failing:


26: Don’t be afraid to make mistakes (that’s how you learn and grow).

As a kid, I was often afraid to make mistakes and this often led to me freezing.

For instance: growing up, I played football. I usually played in “lower” teams, but I knew deep down that I could compete in the highest teams. Unfortunately, I was often too afraid to ask for the ball because I was insecure about losing it.

News flash younger Miles: losing the ball is part of the sport.

Now I know that making mistakes is the path to mastery and growth.

The more mistakes you can make, the better you will become (if you learn from them).


Productivity and focus.

Here’s what I’ve learned about productivity and focus:


27: You can get a week’s worth of work done with 4 hours of focused time in the morning.

The key to productivity is protecting your focus. I can get a week’s worth of work done in 4 hours of focused time in the morning.

I’m not kidding — getting work done is not rocket science. You just have to protect your focus. Remove all distractions, and sit with 1 task for 2-4 hours. It takes forever to get back into the rhythm if I get distracted — but if I can work for 4 hours without any interruptions… Man I can get a lot done. And so can you!


28: The boring work is the moat (learn how to fight shiny object).

A moat refers to your competitive edge. Doing the boring work is your moat. Most people get shiny object syndrome (aka not doing what they’re supposed to be doing and getting distracted by “the next big thing”).

I get it too, but I force myself to stay focused on the tasks that drive the business forward.

For you can that could: stay focused on what’s important to drive results for your clients. And stay focused on generating leads for your freelance business/agency.

Here’s a fantastic episode of The Espresso Hour in which Dickie Bush and Nicolas Cole explain exactly why the boring work is your moat!



29: Take care of your body and mind and everything falls into place.

Lastly: the key to a happy life is to eat well, exercise regularly, and move throughout the day.

My best days always involve some sort of physical exercise — and my worst days are usually when I skip them.


And that's all!

So there you have it — 29 insights and success principles that led me to where I am today. I hope you found them valuable.

In next week’s issue of The PPC Edge, I’m back with hard-core Google Ads tips.

Oh, and The PPC Mastery Podcast also returns in 3-4 weeks!!

Thanks for your support as always — have a great day!


Miles (& Bob)

And whenever you're ready, here's how we can help you further:


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