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Are your desires superficial?

It’s been a while, beautiful people. I’m sorry I’ve been gone so long. It’s been almost a year since I last wrote you and wow, hasn’t my entire world changed in the past 12 months?

Has it been crazy for you too?

My partner and I ended our 8 year relationship, I moved to San Francisco and landed a pretty sweet gig at a company called Lyft. An entire generation of my family passed away and yada, yada, yada.

In the course of all of these profound shifts, I needed time to myself. To purge. To grow. To move. To reflect. To sit with the painful reality of bidding a previous life goodbye.

Can you relate?

Moving forward, I’m changing how I approach this blog. For a while, I felt trapped in talking only about sales and marketing. While these are topics that are near and dear to my heart, there are other areas in life I want to explore with you. Coming out of this year of transformation, I’ve embraced myself as more of a creative than a sales person and am giving myself permission to explore that terrain.

I hope you’ll join me.

Without further delay, allow me to introduce you to Juanita, athough as of recently, she’s feeling more like a Francesca.

She’s one of many muses. Wise, straight talking and a bit rough-around-the-edges, she allows me to dive into questions in a way I can’t as “myself”. Plus, I find her incredibly entertaining and fun to bring to life.

In today’s episode, we discuss the question, “Are my desires superficial?”

How often do you judge your desires? I judge mine more than I care to count.

Today, Francesca gives you the down low on the “ok-ness” in what you seek. You don’t always have to be on and your desires don’t always need to be socially acceptable. They’re YOUR desires!

Her best advice?

“Our desire to be famous comes from our wish to be seen. You, however, must first see yourself.” (tweet it!)

What do you think? Do you judge what you desire? If so, how?

Tell me what you feel in the comment section below. Come on… it’s been a while.

 

 

 

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blinded

Sometimes it feels like we are walking in the dark. No matter how hard we try, the answers and solutions to our most probing questions seem to hide. Until we realize one day that the darkness itself is a facade and that we are actually  soaked in light, truth and all we need.

“What we seek on the outside exists within. The search thus begins inside of you.” (tweet it!)

Below is a short video I created entitled, “blinded” that speaks to the twists and turns we as entrepreneurs, and humans in search of something greater, will inevitably experience.

 

“blinded” by Lauryn Ballesteros

I’s not a party without a conversation!

What do you think? Have you experienced a time in your life or business where you felt like nothing worked? Please share what you did to finally be able to “see” your way out of the problem in the comments below.  We are all the teachers here. 

 

 

 

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How can I live up to my potential?

A few weeks ago I asked a dear friend of mine what question or idea was really eating at her. This is what she wrote to me:

I want to know if I am capable of producing on the outside the level of greatness I have on the inside. I fear my stories will hold me back from my calling or at least allowing myself to go to my calling.

I think that is a question of all of us go getter ask ourselves from time to time especially when we’re going through a transition.

After about 20 really bad Youtube attempts to explain this concept, I decided to take my own advice and “just do it”.

In today’s episode of what we shall call LaurynTV for the moment (the name will change at some point), I take a unique approach to this question.

You’re going to meet Maurica, the flamboyant could-be-Latina, could-be-Russia, soon-to-be singer and hear some profound wisdom dropped on the streets of NYC.

But the even bigger message here is that I ask myself the same exact question more than I care to count or admit. This video is part of my journey figuring out if I will live up to my potential and believe me, there are a lot of mistakes including:

  • We forgot to flip the iPhone the right way so it looks extra narrow.
  • I tried to talk to a group of rebel communists in Union Square park. To say the least, that didn’t work (at all).
  • The “FREE HUG” guy at the park basically took back his offer when he saw we had a camera in our hands.
  •  The quality isn’t that great (it looked so much better on my computer than Youtube) and I clearly have lots to learn about videography.
  • It took me almost two hours to get over the fear of shooting and just do it.

But more than anything, I had to face the reality of what I really want to do… capture stories, create awesome–engaging content, make cool videos that give people a life changing experience and above all… have fun.

So this is me figuring all that out and that’s ok. I definitely didn’t get it perfect this time around and you don’t have to either. And over time, you get better!

So now I’m itching to know about you! What are you in the midst of figuring out? Anyone else out there in the middle of an artistic shift? Tell me about it in the comments. I would LOVE to hear about it!

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Eat your cake already.

Today I spent two hours sitting on the phone, chatting with a teammate about the days to come. And as I write this, I’m in a state of bliss, driven to write and share this super important insight, so pardon the typos.

You see, my newest project  S+M goes live to the entire public today. I’ll tell you more about that later if you want to take a look, but onto the major revelations.

And as it so happens, my sister is also getting married. As you might figure, a family wedding and the launch of a new product in the same week do not go together.

You see, my heart wants to be with my family and as of today, I will be… preparing and doing all the things that sisters do when they get ready to walk down the aisle.

But it left me wondering about this  family and my S+M team.

What do you value? Where are you drawing your boundaries? And where do you feel stuck?

What do you find hardest about selling? What is your number one question about marketing your business ?

We have a good reason for asking. Keep reading because we’re going to have a special chance for you to get ANY sales or marketing question answered by Sophie and I for free.

 Plus, you might be featured on our S+M newsletter!

But first I want to share this life-changing revelation from this past week…

I’ve been told more times than I can count that different life experiences have been “once in a lifetime” ones, as if the excitement and growth that come from daily adventures just somehow ends.
Like the adrenaline rush from working with people like Seth Godin or at the American Embassy in Rome or living in communist Cuba for six months never happen again.
That we’re entitled to live life until we’re 30 and then somehow we become fat and old overnight.
Forgotten.

We have babies and then our lives end.

You reach the invisible ceiling of how much money you can make, good fortune you can accrue and interesting people that will pay attention to you.

And all this because of the notion that you can’t have your cake and eat it too, right?

Well who made that bullshit up?

Why are you giving me cake if I can’t eat it?

That has to be the dumbest saying I’ve ever heard and yet it’s followed almost religiously without realizing it.

We’re taught to sit on the sidelines, only use our good china for special occasions and not to buy white because it dirties too easily.

But white is so elegant, our fine china is pretty and some days, we just want to get up and play!

So why are we hoarding cake?

What we teach at S+M is that true success is not about one moment of joy strewn amongst a lifetime of boredom and mediocrity (that’s a tweetable).

It’s not about putting everyone else’s’ needs first.

No, that is a recipe for misery and disaster. Ironically enough, it’s how many people live their lives.

But not at S+M.

We believe that success is about rich experiences. Meeting fellow soul sisters, flying to Rome for the first time and eating gelato and skinny dipping in the ocean.

It’s about feeling butterflies in your stomach knowing something magical is on the horizon and knowing you have a community who has your back!

It’s about growing.

You see, six weeks ago I was a different person. This launch has changed me in ways I can only begin to explain.

Kori, one of our S+M’ers from down under, describes my sentiments well:

“Raw, engaging and brilliantly fun. I have been absolutely blown away by how this course has affected me both professionally and personally. Six weeks of renewal and wake-up! The lived experiences of Sophie and Lauryn highlighted crazy huge amounts of insightful and practical info I was able to apply straight away! These women are total rock stars of the entrepreneurial world! The unique learning model of the course also created an environment for a very open and honest discussion on topics. No space for bullshit here. We discussed, explored and actioned all concepts. I’m now left with actions happening all over the place, effective daily rituals and a brilliant and motivated network of incredible humans who I feel so lucky to have met. Boo-ya!”– Kori Nemme

The truth is I’ve been changed by this experience as much as our graduates.

Just like Kori, at some point in time, I made the leap to a bigger stage, a more abundant mindset and a crystal clear vision for what I secretly wanted out of life.

Before, I just wasn’t as clear no matter how hard I tried (problem #1) and I was afraid to admit what I really wanted for fear of failing (problem #2).

Maybe you can relate.

“I should do this… and I probably should do that. Everyone says I should do this to get ahead.. and well I definitely can’t do that! ”

[boooooo!]

I don’t know precisely when the change took place and I can’t seem to pinpoint the day or time. I can’t even quantify it.

I just know that I’m different and that would have never happened if I didn’t pursue this dream project, now known as S+M.

Happier, wiser, more loved, more confident and with another once-in-a-lifetime experience under my belt that I will cherish forever.

And was it worth it?

Was risking it all, turning down paying clients, saying no to others so I could say yes to myself… was it honestly worth it?

You bet your ass it was.

And that cake?

I devoured it!

Because that is what cake is for… to eat!

And that is what life is for! To connect, experience, relate and do work you’re proud of.

Live into your biggest self rather than hiding behind the socially acceptable version, the one that wears Gap when you really want to rock out a la Rihanna in patent leather boots (oh if we could be so brave!) and the one who yearns for adventures in Tuscany with beautiful Italian men in tight pants (or maybe that’s just my dream).

Well guess what pretty people, today is that day. At S+M we offer you the chance to create the business and the life you want with the freedom you need to be fully expressed.

Here’s a taste of what you’ll learn in your 6 weeks with us:

  • How to create a winner’s mindset in the best and worst of times
  • When and how to use meditation for sales mastery
  • What being yourself has to do with landing major clients
  • What modern business is actually about (and most people won’t tell you this)
  • Our secrets to closing six figures and beyond
  • Define your client: learn exactly what your customer is thinking
  • How to leverage your personal story for juicy marketing
  • EDGE: Our proven system for selling with ease to anyone
  • How to position yourself as a solution in any business situation
  • How to grow and build key relationships with successful people
  • And lots more…

S+M is all about creating a life and business full of rich experiences. The more alive you feel, the better you will sell. And that’s the bottom line.

But we’re betting that you have questions and we want to hear ‘em.

We want your toughest sales and marketing questions
This is your chance. We want you to send us your toughest, juiciest, wildest, zaniest questions about sales and marketing.

Lay it on us.

Are you stuck? Have you tried everything and it hasn’t worked? Are you clueless as to how to get what you want and make money? Are you unsure at how pleasure and sales relate?

Girl, send those questions in to info@smlaunch.com now!

We are going to personally answer EVERY SINGLE QUESTION and you may even be featured as part of our S+M Entourage in our S+M Newsletter!

Whatever question or concern you have, wherever you feel stuck in your business, you can ask us any question until October 24th, 2013 at noon EST. You are guaranteed to get a response.

Don’t wait. Email us now. We want to hear from you.

And while you’re at, check out what you’re missing over at S+M. Take a look at the full, 6 week business course. 

Cheers, to your brightest, boldest future.

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My Facebook Mustache

How many times have we gone on Facebook only to look at all of our “friends” living their perfect lives? Then we feel bad about ourselves, wanting what we think they have.

Let’s be real, I look at Facebook for more than 10 seconds and I wanna die.

Everyone looks cooler, happier and more stylish than me. I’ve come to the conclusion I need a personal stylist, personal trainer and brand manager for my Facebook account, because, after stalking my college friends and business associates for the last 4 hours, I vote that I’m biggest loser out of my 2,000+ friends, ⅔ of which I don’t know and are some people that in 2004, when Facebook just came out, I said why not.

You can poke me and we can be friends. #oldschool #whopokesanymore #doespokeevenexist

Facebook has got me wondering about bullshit like..

Bathroom selfie shot with duck lips?

Like seriously, why is no one liking my pictures? I have to worry about stupid babies and fat cats getting all the love.

Why didn’t she tag me to her “repost this to 10 women you love” picture?  What, we’re not friends anymore?

Dude, did he really just unfriend me. Really?

Omg, it looks like I have a mustache in that picture! Why didn’t she photoshop that? Why would she tag me to that knowing I have a nasty stash look! [texting her now to take it down OR to report as inappropriate content]

Even with sexy pictures, lots of friends and mom and pops liking my posts, I’ve come to the conclusion I have no friends, could stand to lose a few pounds and should probably pop out a baby or get married if I want to stay relevant.

It’s got me thinking.

What are we doing with our lives, watching what are basically glorified soap operas on Facebook, wishing we had what exactly?

What about the important stuff? When are we going to get real about our own lives?

The truth of the matter is we hide on Facebook, among other things.

I love the freedom that social media and digital media can offer, but it’s important to not confine yourself to a soap opera.

The bigger question is what are you doing with your life that you’re proud of?

And more importantly, have you acknowledged the dream inside of you that just won’t go away?

For me, that involved realizing that this is what I want to do. Media. Talk-show, lead a team and be super creative. Earn the right to have the attention of millions to serve and be uplifted in return.

But for a long time that felt too big.

Yes, I want video but I’ll look dumb and I don’t know the tech.

I can’t afford that.

No one will show up.

What can I even say?

Ah, I’m too tired for this.

The excuses are endless but the dream is strong even when hidden, even when we find ourselves roaming around the digital landscape of Facebook wondering if our ex-boyfriends girlfriends are hot (and we often hope not–shame on us!).

Reminiscing about times past because you don’t like your present life.

But you can change that.

I promise you, there is no magic formula to start, simply a choice that you will and the bravery to keep going when it get hairy.

Like for our upcoming S&M course… we were supposed to launch October 1st, 2013 but with significant website setbacks we made the executive decision to wait.

This led to a bigger investment of time and money on our part, but it was the right decision.

Did I know the right answer? No.

Was I stressed, tired and wondering what I got myself into?

Yeah, at certain points.

But you just wait. Our website is going to look outstanding. And the product is even better. (Ah I’m so excited!)

The journey is as sweet as it is sour and the outcome makes you stupid enough to want to do it again.

I wish for each of you that sort of stupidity.

Being smart is safe.

But being foolish? Well that’s an adventure..

[psst… Our online course, S&M, where you learn to sell anything is going live next week!  We love our readers and have a big surprise for you folks. Sign up here like right now to make sure you hear about them (seriously)]

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The unveiling: 2013 S&M Scholarship Winners

You may have heard… The votes are in. Our 2013 S&M scholarship winners have been chosen.

And boy, was choosing difficult. 

Each applicant was given the task of demonstrating generosity. The following question was given to them:

Share a personal story of who you would help if you had $1
million dollars and why? It could be you mom who needs help
with rent each month, or the local animal shelter to help save
dogs without homes. We care less about the cause and
more about your heart. Authenticity and sincerity win the gold.

We were blown away by the sincerity of each applicant and the effort they went through to be honest and open.

Thank you to each of you that applied, we’re thrilled at your initiative to step up and take your life to the next level. 

So – who are the winners of 2013’s S&M?

I proudly present ALICIA SALAZAR and ELI SHINE, our proud winners of the 2013 S&M Scholarship. Congratulations Alicia & Eli!

Each winner will receive a FULL scholarship to take our S&M course on sales, marketing and self-promotion for entrepreneurs like you.

[Guess what? S&M launches Tuesday, October 1, 2013. Be part of the magic and get your business going today! Start by going to smlaunch.com to grab our FREE sales and marketing tutorials and to sign up to be notified when we OFFICIALLY go live. See you soon!]

 

 

 

 

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How do I launch my business?

Launching a business is hard, but there’s one thing that’s probably even harder still.

In today’s intimate interview, Never Stop Dreaming: A discussion around what it really takes to live your dream, we get deep and juicy with two fabulous entrepreneurs who give it to you straight about what you can expect when you make the leap, how to get over the hurdles that come flying at you, and they even highlight the one thing that’s even HARDER than launching a business…

I’ve known these two women for a great number of years. From their backgrounds in ivy league schools to MBA’s to F500 companies to breaking away from the 9-5 to something bigger, they agreed to let me push and pry and get at the good stuff, the feelings, fears and truths most people aren’t willing to discuss.

On the line is Jordan Hayles, a Spanish instructor and startup founder, alongside Theresa Campbell, fast track sales maven at Ford turned life coach for powerful women.

In this raw interview we cover:

  • How Jordan hustled her way to a final interview with Seth Godin and didn’t make it last round (and what she did to rebound back).

  • What inspires fast-track Theresa to leave her high paying F500 job to teach.

  • How to NEVER repeat their mistakes (and lose 10 years as a result)

  • Why listening to your body can add years to your life (and dollars to your bank account)

  • Top 4 tips in plowing past the obstacles

  • Why Jordan waited 10 years to take the jump into entrepreneurship

  • How to make the leap from 9-5 to business owner

  • The magic of finding the perfect business partner

  • And a lot more!

You have two options to enjoy this interview. You can watch and listen via video (see above). The internet did drop out a few times so the video may do the same. You can also enjoy the transcript below.

Now it’s time for the camera to be flipped onto you — what do you think is even HARDER than launching a business and making the leap from 9-5? Tell me your TOP idea in the comments below now. 

—-> p.s. Have you heard? We’re offering a full scholarship opportunity for readers interested in learning 7 figure sales, marketing and self-promotion through our new S+M business course. Did you apply? The deadline is tomorrow! Click here to learn more and apply. ←——

 

—————————————————————

INTERVIEW BEGINS

THERESA - I’m Theresa Campbell, like Lauryn said. I can’t believe I’m about to say this, but I just celebrated my 30th birthday last weekend – which was amazing. It has been quite the journey, very similar to everybody else. Went to school, graduated from Michigan State University, and got a job at a Fortune 500 company right out of college. I’ve actually spent 8 years in the automotive industry. I gained a lot of experience in this industry that I know had the industry not taken a turn (economy) for the worst, jobs that I probably wouldn’t have had the opportunity that I had if there weren’t a bunch of layoffs.

So I’m very grateful for my experience in the industry at this point in time. And yeah, I hit fast forward and did the whole MBA thing.. then after that I looked up and said “now what?” Thinking that more maybe would have come of that. After my program I realized, you know, I really don’t want to work somewhere else – and I really don’t want to write another resume.

The thought of writing a resume or another cover-letter actually physically made me feel weird. So ultimately, I realized that I need to be working for myself. I couldn’t even see myself working for someone else. So I guess over the past 2-3 years I’ve been really investing in myself – life coaching and business coaching and finding out who I really am and what it is that I want, then going after it. Literally waking up at 4:30am in the morning and digging to figure out what I really want. So, that’s kind of a high level overview.

LAURYNTheresa is a total go-getter. A make-shit-happen personality type. She has a big heart and is so dedicated to what it is that she wants and doing it in the right way. Jordan, darlin’, onto you…

JORDAN – Jordan, in a nutshell, who am I? I’m Jordan Hayles, what’s up everybody! I’m a country girl at heart with a little bit of city. I am at my core, a big nerd. Academics and reading is my life. I’m also a dancer and used to be a pianist- so I’m all about using both sides of my brain. On a day by day, I’m the head instructor and product creator for Spanish for Busy Professionals. By night, I work a presidential purpose which has been a challenge over the last 4 years – to really step into my life presidentially. I’m really cool, down to earth, and really looking forward to this chat!

LAURYNYou said that you used to be a pianist? You no longer play the piano?

JORDAN – I no longer play the piano. That was just in college because I’d have to compete with the music majors for access to the piano, and I never ended up buying a full keyboard. I keep saying that I’m going to get one so I can get back into it – because music does really make me feel alive.

LAURYN - I want to hear you perspective on – what is it that you’re really passionate about right now? What is the biggest emotion/driving force in your life that lights your fire?

THERESA – For me, it’s helping people chase their potential. I see potential in practically everyone that I encounter – and it’s in the role I can play in helping them get from point A to point B. Wherever they want to go, or places they can’t even see themselves going. I feel a responsibility to tap into those individuals and help them get where they want to go in business… and in life. I’ve always been a teacher at heart. Help people see the world and their life differently – and go after what they want.

LAURYN - Before you started working with Ford 8 years ago, would you say this is something you always knew you wanted to do – or – is this something that over the past few years it became clear to you through doing things you didn’t want to be doing?

THERESA – I think it was something that I’ve known I’ve wanted to do, I just didn’t know what it was going to look like. I remember when I was a lot younger, I said to my dad: “I want to be a teacher.” I had said that for a very long time. I said it again in high school and my dad said, “Teachers don’t make any money.” Then I went to college undeclared, but I always worked with kids, and I got a job at a child development center and started teaching. Then something happened and I was like, “I really like business, events and planning – I can always go back to teaching but I can’t go back and learn about business or marketing, etc.”

LAURYN - Why did you think you can’t go back to business but you can go back to teaching? You need degrees for both of them. So what was your line of thinking?

THERESA – If I wanted to go back and teach, I could teach business. That was it. It was the passion at the moment. I wanted to learn about business – but I’d always find a way to help people no matter what I was doing. There were some unpleasant experiences involving some of the parents – which I didn’t like so much.

LAURYNI’m going to be real blunt and point this out. When I hear you speak, I hear “I wanted to be a teacher, I tried teaching but I didn’t like it. There was probably not a lot of money in it anyways. Pays better to do the business thing.” Ironically enough, you ended up in sales. Which is literally, the money section of the business that drives it. I find it interesting that as you pursued this, you wanted to go into teaching, then you were encouraged to go down this sales path. Do you see the correlation? Maybe I’m completely off.

THERESA – I think it wasn’t about the money, it was about continuing to learn about myself. When I was in college, I thought the best professors were the ones who actually had work experience, then came back and taught. That drove my decision. I started thinking, “I’m going to roll up my sleeve and go do this corporate stuff and really get a feel for the culture and environment.” Then I could go back to the classroom and teach it. Which is also why I didn’t go back for my MBA because I had already been working for 3 years. It made such a difference for me to go back and take classes at night, after working full time, and take in the information. Then the whole teaching thing came back up, and I didn’t want to go back to school. I don’t like the bureaucracy, I don’t like the structure and I don’t like being put through a system. Always a teacher at heart. I’ve always found a way to be developing curriculum, giving back.. and developing people. I just always found a way to do that.

LAURYNThis is awesome. Jordan, what would you say is the biggest motivating force in your life? What is your fire?

JORDAN – It’s a word… and that word is Presidential. I’m always asking myself, “If I act today in a way that’s presidential, on whatever I’m trying to do, what will that look like?” So, the way I’m going to show up in a presidential fashion might be a little different than how I might show up in just a regular fashion. I like to look at that and try and embody that kind of energy. It really puts my head in a different place, and gets me excited. I think secondary to that is trying to show up as clear as possible, and really stepping into my own.

LAURYNCan you elaborate a little bit, what does Presidential mean to you? Does that mean you dress like the President? What does that look like and mean?

JORDAN – Well, part of the journey is figuring out what that means. We see presidents and we don’t think about what the concept is behind that, so it is a bit complicated. But some of the things I’ve come up with first – is what questions do Presidents have to ask themselves about the problems they’re trying to solve? – and could those same questions be applicable to my life? For example, I might ask in this particular task – what idea, person or action would I like to convey as president right now? Also, to a certain extent, merely asking the question, “if today I showed up as President in a nation of my own, what would I do differently?” This thinking helps me get into my head and become and over-all problem solver.

LAURYNDo you think you’ve always lived with Presidential purpose, or do you feel like this is something you had to actively step into?

JORDAN – Both. In certain moments of my life, I have definitely risen to a very high standard (I wouldn’t say that it was necessarily a Presidential standard). Then I hit a rut around my college years – which was really difficult health wise for me, and I had a hard time getting my head back into that space. Then by the time I met you, at the Seth Godin interview, it was that moment where I could feel that greater sense of a purpose. So, I’ve had many moments in my life that have given me a glimpse – and now it’s about setting up that foundation so I can appear that way more consistently in my life.

LAURYNJust for a little background for you guys, Jordan and I (a few years ago), interviewed for The Domino Project, which was a new publishing venture created by Seth Godin – he was looking for people to come work for him for a 6-7 month stint. Jordan really sold her way into that interview and didn’t let anything stop her. She had the most interesting story of how she ended up in the interview – she did not take no for an answer. She totally wow’ed everyone in the room.

At the end we were told to pick who we wanted on our team, and I was so certain that Jordan was in. But, when I found out Jordan hadn’t made the cut, I was incredibly surprised. For a lot of people – the thought of working with Seth Godin was like the magic pill.

So Jordan, what did it feel like knowing you did everything you could to get the interview, to really show up in a big way and not make it?

JORDAN – Of course you’re disappointed, without a doubt. But, the immediate emotion I felt after seeing the NO was, “hot damn, I am in NYC, I just met Seth Godin – and I totally could have not been here.” I think because I was going through such a rut, then I got this surge that forced me to look at this in a different light. The ‘how am I going to solve this problem” type of energy. I was so happy that I showed up so big in that way – and really using my creativity and reaching out to people. I felt like that was my big lesson – like that was the big shot. To show myself that I’m capable of a whole lot more than I’ve been doing in the past few years. Maybe even more than I ever thought.

After being in touch with you guys later down the road, even after working with Seth Godin, it seems like it’s still a lot of work to get from A to B in terms of what your dreams are. Yes it puts you in a great position and you can put this on your resume (nevermind the incredible connections), but it still looks like a lot of hard work.

LAURYNI totally want to echo that point. Don’t get me wrong, working with Seth Godin – an amazing human being, so much gratitude! But, you’re given these positions where people think you’re stupid to walk away from it. Like, “why would you walk away from this, you have a name behind you; you have credibility, a reputation, resources, contacts, MONEY. Why would you leave that?” So, about a year and some change ago – I walked away from Squidoo, which was a really hard decision. So I’m wondering for you, Theresa, how do you deal with that knowing that one day you might step away from Ford? Can you relate to what Jordan and I are talking about? Where from the outside it looks like – wow, you have everything, but when you’re in it it’s a lot more work than you actually thought.

THERESA – I think that’s absolutely spot on. I remember telling my family I was going to do this online business thing, and it was going to be part time until I could figure out how to do it full time. The question was “why?” Not saying that I’m stupid – but that’s how I felt by them asking. One person’s paradise is another persons’ prison. So, it’s difficult for me being a high achiever, go-getter type person – but then realizing I want to be that person… in a different place. It is difficult because there are a lot of great perks, including vacation times, bonus checks and a company car, etc. Why would you ever want to give that up? You have the best gig and people would kill for your job, and that stuff can really start to mess with you. You never want to be thought of as not being grateful or not counting your blessings. But the point is, I had to work for this and still do – it’s not like I just ended up in this position.

I have to keep working to keep my reputation and still be a high performer and over achiever. Like when people say “oh, you could be the next VP,” but I know that’s not my place, and that’s a really difficult conversation to have while I figure my shit out. That’s a really difficult place to be, but when you know who you are and what you want to do – it’s worth every difficult conversation.

LAURYNI think women can totally relate to this: Saying no to what really serves us. I don’t know where the mentality stems from, but I noticed this in life. Do you have the mindset that everything is possible? That you can achieve whatever you set your mind to achieve? Then, in the middle is the person that feels: “I’m appreciative for my 4 jobs and everything I have, but this isn’t my calling – what am I supposed to just stay in this position because everyone thinks it a great idea?” Learning to say no, whether that be to clients that you don’t want, or engagements that you just don’t want to do, isn’t easy.

Everyone pay attention: It doesn’t get any easier to say no to these things! When I left my gig with Seth (this is total transparency) I was making a range of anything from over $12,000 per month to $500 per month. When you pursue your entrepreneurial dream you will have obstacles. The Domino Project has been a gift, because it was really my first community in NYC of people who believed in me, who saw my own potential when I couldn’t see it myself – when I thought I was just that loser that ‘looked kind of cool’ and that everyone was going to realize at some point that I didn’t know what I was doing. But that never happened. People told me I was really good at what I do.

What do you both say has been your biggest obstacle, to come to this point where you know what you want to build are you’re ready to do it? And what has been the thing that’s helped you the most to do it? For me, it’s been community. What was the real shit?

JORDAN – First of all, I’m extremely blessed despite the fact that I’ve had a lot of tremendous obstacles in my life. The first obstacle was how I saw myself. Coming out of high school, going into college, I was really on a high. I had gotten into 5 Ivy league schools, anywhere from Harvard to Yale to Stamford to MIT. There was a lot of good things that were going on. I was really geared toward success, but the problem was my health really wasn’t there. I was not feeling well, I was not able to show up – I didn’t have the clarity or the energy. I really didn’t know what was wrong with me. So for a long time that existed – the lack of energy and not understanding why I was having trouble focusing, and couldn’t get out of bed because I was crying. That was a big deal. Until I was able to identify that problem, I was just thinking “who am I, and what’s going on?”

The other big thing is I had always told everyone that I was going to be a doctor. Then I realized that I could be a doctor, a really good one, but I didn’t want to be a doctor. I didn’t know what I wanted to do after that. Because my health wasn’t in order, I didn’t have the brainpower to get clarity about what I wanted.

My next obstacle was discovering that I was going to do something unconventional. When I told my parents I was going to do something way more entrepreneurial, that was hard for them to stomach. They’ve been very supportive in the best way they can, but that was hard for them.

LAURYN – The part about not crying and wanting to get up – if anyone listening in can relate to that, I really want to highlight the importance of it. There’s no shame in having those feelings – it’s not that you’re weak or F*ed up, none of that is the case. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t seek out help, but from a loving place, those things are so important. And in business, especially in the entrepreneurial stage, it’s sort of seen as this badge of pride to just muscle through it.

Even if that means working 13 hour days and eating ramen for dinner, blah blah blah! A lot of people talk about in the S&M course, and in general, take care of yourself folks. If there’s something seriously going on, if you’re body is telling you to slow down – all the riches, and jewels and impact you see is going to happen to for you, but NOT until you take care of yourself. So Jordan, thank you for being so open about that. A lot of us, especially women, don’t want to share those kinds of things because they’re afraid they will come across as emotional or sensitive. Screw that! We have shit we go through, and thats ok. It’s part of real life, and we should honor that.

JORDAN – And the quicker you come to terms on what it is, the closer you are to solving the problem. In my situation, it went so long being undiagnosed, which could have been the time to get me back up to speed. So what could have just lasted for 3 months, ended up lasting for a decade. It’s really important to recognize that.

My biggest support… well, my parents were always there for me in the best way that they could be. So I am appreciative to them for everything. I also did a really good job at networking, so when I was stepping onto the entrepreneurial path and I had a lot of severe ups and downs – the relationships that I had nurtured really came to help me. But I do have to say that the Seth Godin experience for me was a big deal because I got a chance to meet with people who were doing the same things and were aligned with what I wanted to do. It was the spirit of it, and I didn’t have that in my life before. So that was a tremendous help for me.

LAURYN - So it sounds like relationships and even more than that, with Seth Godin, is being around like-minded people, who have a spirit similar to yours, or a life that you want to have. Same thing if I wanted to lose weight, but everyone in my life is eating KFC everyday, then I go to a meetup and it’s a runners group for people who are getting off the couch to do something – oh my god, that’s what I’m talking about!

The more honest you are with yourself, the more you bring into your life exactly what you need.

What has been your biggest obstacle and aid, Theresa?

THERESA – My biggest obstacle, I thought, was my finances. For so long I kept telling myself I couldn’t do things because I didn’t have the finances or I had to pay off student loans. So, I was always using finances as an excuse for why I couldn’t do something. I was having a conversation with my life coach based on finances. He made me realized that once everything aligns with who you are, what your values are and what you want to do – you answer is yes. This alignment is the compass that leads you to your dreams. The question went from ‘how big are your finances’ to ‘how big is your faith.’

What was really holding me back was the faith in myself. I realized that you just have to lean on your faith and your stuff just has a way of working itself out. I had to trust that everything was going to work out, and get over this financial perspective that I kept in the way. You have to do what makes sense to you and what works for your family. We all have different paces, we all know what’s best for us.

LAURYN - I find one of the biggest reasons why we say we can’t do something, is actually just a distraction. The thing is, true generosity comes from a place of groundedness, space and love. If you’re giving to avoid do something else – it’s actually a void gift. If every time you give someone something it means you can’t give yourself something that you want…. overtime that blows up in your face. We have to be willing to put ourselves first. Learn where your boundaries are, and what you want.

There’s a situation where a lot of us are becoming the bread winners, we’re kickin’ butt – the roles in the family changes. How to do you still feel like a woman when you’re bringing in the money?

Theresa, what was the parting in the clouds for you? [The opposite of an obstacle].

THERESA – Two things. First, getting around the right people. You change your environment, you change your friends, you change your life. You don’t get rid of your old friends, you just change your circles and things will shift. It’s being around like-minded people. Someone might be 10 steps in front of you, but learning from those people can be so much more beneficial than trying to learn from an ‘Oprah.’

Build a network. That person that you’re on the phone with when you publish your first blog, or the person you cry with when you make your first dollar… even if it’s from your dad. Those people are important.

Also, changing my mindset about things. This whole concept of detaching yourself from the outcome. That’s helped me to be extremely productive. Look at things as they are. Don’t dwell and put so much energy into an outcome, you can’t function on that without being drained.

JORDAN – I’ve had things that have happened that were awesome, and I didn’t know it at the time, but those were the things that were setting me up down the line. After I met Lauryn, and everyone at The Domino Project, I could have turned away and not kept in communication with all of them.. and that would have been my detriment. Because I held onto these relationships and kept communication going, I was able to join this project with Lauryn and Sophie down the road. That never would have happened if the other thing didn’t happen, and if I didn’t continue to nurture my relationships. You never know how things will workout.

LAURYNThey both took the S&M beta test. It’s been a journey for me too. For a long time I pushed away from this business, or this kind of future, for many different reasons. Having that partner, Sophie Solomon, we knew we wanted to be different from everyone else and we knew we had the answers to a lot of questions that people were struggling with in business. Specifically sales, marketing, and self-promotion. It was a hail mary for us. You guys loved it. So, I would love to get your perspective on it. How did you feel about S&M, taking the beta course, especially with everything leading up to getting you to this place?

JORDAN – I can’t tell you how much of a savior it was for me because I knew it was going to be good just because Lauryn was involved, but what I didn’t know what was going to happen in my own life that would cause me to need that type of structure, support and environment. I had a major accident, but because of the program, I had so much structure that kept my head in the game. It kept me on top of my game, but looking at the frontiers of what my game could be. How could I show up a little bit differently. Then, what happened after that was ripple effect of great stuff. Not to mention the sales and marketing stuff and how beneficial that was for my business.

LAURYNAt the end of 6 weeks, you ended up acquiring another client, a paying client, which is awesome. And now you and Theresa are partnering together to put together your own product and bring something into the world. Is that right?

THERESA – YES! I wanted to connect with everyone after the course. Jordan and I got really close and were sharing what we were doing, and where we saw ourselves within the next 30 days. I was doing things for my own business at the time [shipping], that I didn’t have space in my mind to manage. So we had a conversation, discussed what we each had going on. The next day we decided, ok let’s get shipping. We need to be shipping everyday. We identified something that was going to move us in the direction of our dreams. A lot came out of this, not only a friendship, but the amount of stuff we got done! We have been putting our heads together to create the app for the program. It feels really good.

LAURYNIt sounds like from the course you were given structure to pursue what you wanted to pursue. When things got hard, you had people to depend upon so you wouldn’t quit. You had resources that helped you move forward. Community… it sounds like you guys were able to find like-minded people who supported you, and some became lifelong friends. This also created an income string, and partnerships, which could potentially be a big part of your life – whether that be merely helping others, or money, etc.

Would you recommend the S&M program to other people? And who do you think this should be for, in your own words, who should take this course?

JORDAN – Absolutely! The first thing that popped into my head when you asked that question was, people with an open mind. That’s who I’d recommend it to. Because, one of the things I loved about the course was the unconventional / non-traditional approach to sales and marketing. The course is so much more than just a formula to get where you want to be, like many other things in life train us to believe. So, someone with an open mind, and a playful spirit who is willing to do work. Someone who is open to experience what the course has to offer. It’s bigger than what’s out there. If people do the work, you’ll see the results. It’s very foundational – it really sets you up for success. Not just for beginners. It sets you up to dig deep into yourself and get results.

LAURYNThis is music to my ears! It makes me so happy you feel that way. Can you reflect on this for people who haven’t seen as much success as they want but they’re definitely not spring chicken?

JORDANThis is such a great foundational course for people. For people who are already in the game, these are things [S&M course content] you need to be doing on a consistent basis. Not just at the beginning of your journey, but all the way through.

LAURYN – It’s kind of like yoga. You can never perfect yoga. I’m so much better at yoga now than I was 2 months ago, but it’s something that you continuously are working on – and there’s a self care piece to that as well. This is for people who value quality over quantity. If you care about quality, experience, aesthetics and community – this is where you want to be.

Thank you girls so much for taking the time to share what I felt was very vulnerable and share your stories. I discovered a lot about both of you. Can you tell us where everyone can find you girls!

THERESAwww.herlifeherlegacy.com or send theresa@herlifeherlegacy.com, also on twitter and facebook. Message me people!

JORDANwww.jordanhayles.com and you can also email me at jordan@jordanhayles.com

LAURYN – For those of you who are interested in learning more about our S&M program (sales and marketing course) – which is about to LAUNCH first week of October at www.smlaunch.com. We have 3 free business tutorials up now that won’t be there forever, and some other cool stuff, so check it out! It’s top level insight into your business.

I’ll talk to you guys later! Thanks so much. That’s a wrap!

END OF INTERVIEW

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“I’d love to be bigger and bolder. I wanna get out and get noticed!”

[pssst… If you’re looking for the S+M free video tutorial on self promotion like a pro, scroll down the page. You’ll find it under #4 of the Roadmap to Self-Promotion toward the bottom of the post]

Why I refused to promote my blog for 4 years

When I first left my real estate business almost four years ago and began this whole online journey, I knew I wanted to help people experience more freedom and joy in their lives. What I didn’t know then was that I was a natural at sales and marketing and was on the cusp of something really big. We all have things we’re naturally good at and sometimes it just takes some time to discover those innate talents.

You can see one of my earlier videos here (warning: the editing is kind of bad and at some point, a bug is sitting on my forehead for like 3 minutes. Oh the early days!). This video was shot three years ago, right before I made my big move to NYC.

As I started to work in NYC, I judged that girl in the video you just saw. I slowly began to change my idea of what a “cool” business was. I began to think that business had to be hard and manly and it was only a “real” business if it was funded and of course, anything 100% online was cheap and cheesy.

In fact, most everything I had seen online felt cheap, overly promotional and void of meaning (even if it had value).

So for years I denied and pushed down what I really, truly, in my heart wanted to do because I feared looking like “them” (and you know who I’m talking about).

The flashing arrows, the “buy now or you’ll never ever achieve anything” fear tactics, the ugly websites and the crappy content.

I’ll tell you– I spent $25,000 on one of those courses that promised a miracle and it took me $25k and some experience to realize there is no magic pill. There is no magic formula. There is trustworthy, useful information, there are the people who support you and above and beyond anything else, there’s action.

Ultimately, I began to think that my dream business wasn’t possible because having it meant selling out and having really ugly marketing [and let’s be honest, I’m a bit of a design snob ;) ].

Over time, having had many different gigs since my first days in NYC, my opinion has changed.

And today, as I get ready to share our second video with you (as part of our three part series) and as we gear up to tell you about our business course that’s taken almost a year to make, complete with an application-only beta test and countless hours of brainstorming, research and grit…

… I realize that this stuff works. That you can live life on your own terms and deal with the obstacles as they come about with style and grace. And more than anything, I’m humbled and inspired that I made it this far and know that you can too.

The real reason no one is blogging about you

One of the biggest misconceptions around self-promotion is that people think that the bloggers and journalists need to initiate contact with you. People ask questions like,

“How do I get press? And how do I get people to come to my website? How do I get cool bloggers to feature my work?”

“I see all these other people in my industry in Fortune, Forbes, Fast Company and everything else and my work is just as good, but why aren’t I being featured?’

You see, most people think that if you’re talented, you’re innately gifted, and thus the world is going to naturally recognize that. As if you were a shining star in the sky and us bloggers and journalists are going to look up, realize it’s you shining up above and clamor to feature you.

Nope. That just isn’t how it works.

For one thing, people are really busy. Even when they’re not super busy, they think they are, so asking them to do a lot of extra work is pointless. And researching people to feature, especially if they’re someone on the internet who has never been written about in a major publication, doesn’t share any of their work publicly or affiliate themselves with known organizations, well that makes finding them incredibly difficult. We market effectively because we want to be found easily. If we cannot find you easily, then you have a marketing problem. You in essence have a self-promotion problem.

Secondly, the media industry doesn’t work that way. This is what journalists and bloggers do. They think about writing for or about a certain topic. They search that topic in Google. They find some names of writers and journalists who have written about this topic. They make note of the publication, the articles and the writers. Then, they go and look up magazines and blogs they like. They search for their topic of choice in those media outlets to see if they are interested in those topics. They make note of the writers and the editors.

Now, they have a list of “credible” publications to write for, experts to quote and cite and potential blogs for guest posts. They also know the editors so they know who to pitch.

Then, they write the story and they try to go sell it. Other folks who have relationships with editors will simply pitch the idea first before they do the work of actually writing.

Now, if your name and material does not show up in any of those searches or if you cannot point to your work somewhere that is comparable to those publications, then you are not on their radar.

Now, not everyone is going to make it out of the gates to the top 10 articles of all times in Forbes.

So then what do you do?

You pitch yourself. You promote yourself, your work and your ideas. This is the same for PR as it is for getting more clients. You step up to the plate and get to sharing your ideas.

If no one is blogging about you, it’s because you have yet to create the opportunity for yourself.” (tweet that!)

Yes, occasionally someone may ask you to write for their blog, but the big guys? The juicy ones that give you reach and credibility? There are too many known writers to go searching for a needle in a haystack. If you’re not already in reputable magazines, then you need to start pitching… now!

“I wanna get out and get noticed…”

When you’re ready, you just know it. You might be scared, have butterflies in your stomach and may not even be sure of the exact plan to make it all happen, but you know you’re ready for more.
In fact, the above quote was taken from one of my readers a few months back when I asked her what she wanted to learn in the coming months. Her, like thousands of other budding entrepreneurs, struggle with the same thing: being found and seen by the right customers. And then once you attract the right people, how do you get them to work with you?

I’ve been listening to your comments, your feedback and the needs of my students. As a result, my good friend and I have put together a content rich, action packed course to give you the exact tools and community you need to make get your business off the ground. It’s online so as long as you have internet, you’re a-ok to rock it out.

The fact of the matter is if you don’t sell yourself and your ideas, your business is going to suffer.

You’re going to suffer.

This course is anti-suffering (and pro pleasure) and won’t be for everyone. I say that with 100% sincerity. It’s for the people who are on the cusp of something bigger, who are excited at the thought of their potential and want to do something to make it happen. I’m less concerned with where you are than where you intend on going…

In our course, we’ll be covering the following in depth:

  • How to promote yourself without selling out
  • Four ways to quickly identify your customers’ personality type (and effortlessly tailor each conversation to them)
  • The spiritual side of 7 figure sales
  • The trick to getting paid what you’re worth
  • When and how to connect with your audience (and why women are extra good at this)
  • Secrets to selling 7 figures and beyond
  • What burnout is really telling you
  • And a lot more…

You will have a proven action plan, simple, clear guidance on how to implement it, a heavy dose of doing what you love and a world-class support system to hold you accountable… a safe space to share your desires, your fears and your successes.

And the best part, we’re making it extra affordable the first round and are even offering an option for a select few to take it for free.

The promise? That you’ll take action and when you do, you’re going to see improvement. More people will know who you are, you will close more sales or at least have more of the right customers talking to you and maybe even find your next business partner (all of this and more happened in our beta test).

No more hiding. No more excuses. If you’re sitting on a project that needs to launch or thinking about a possible business and just feel stuck, this is the rocket booster you need and have been waiting for.

Please realize this: People take courses all the time and don’t do a whole lot with that information. Our course is aimed at getting you to take fierce action that feels good. You will see and feel different at the end of working with us. #guaranteed. Ultimately, when we give you more information about the course and you are asked to participate, I want you to follow your gut. Not fear. Not the dream of a magic pill. Your gut.

So, be on the lookout for more information and in the coming days, I’ll be sharing how you can even take the course for free!

What can you do NOW to get better at self-promotion? Below is a simple road map to getting you the attention you need and deserve for a money-making, impact-spreading business. Keep in mind, you can do these in any order you want and steps 1, 2 and 4 are ongoing.

A Four Step Roadmap to Promoting like a Champ

Step #1: Develop confidence
People like confidence. They like to know that they can trust you and if/when a problem arises, they can rely on you. Confidence in who you are sends the message that you’re reliable, that you’re worth their time and energy. It tells people that even when things don’t run smoothly, I’m you’re gal. You can count on me! It doesn’t mean you have all the answers. It doesn’t mean you’re perfect. It means you’re willing to try and the confidence comes in trusting you can and will find the answer (e.g. a solution, a blog post idea, a person to help with the project).

This is the most important part of any pitch and any relationship in life. If you lack in self-confidence, work on building it. Surround yourself with people you trust, that hold a bigger vision than you have for yourself and that want to see you succeed. Without confidence, none of these other steps matter. And if you’re like oh, I need to have 100% confidence before I do anything else.. realize that’s a trap. You’ll probably never be 100% certain so best to get a movin’ when you’ve got some steam in your engine.

Step #2: Be super generous (with yourself and others) 
Business is about giving. It’s about helping people get what they want. Like the famous salesman, Zig Ziglar, used to say, “You can get what you want so long as you help enough people get what they want.”

The thing about offering to help people (especially if you admire those folks), is that you have to feel confident in your ability to delver value. Most people think that to help someone you need to do a lot of work.

Again, this is not true. Many times, what comes easily to you does not come easily to someone else. Thus, you may not even feel like you’re doing much of anything but to them, it means the world!

Be willing to find out what other people need and be willing to help them make it happen. if you trust them, consider making a much needed introduction. Maybe they need directions to the best restaurant in NYC– help them out. Or maybe they’re mother just passed away and they need someone to cheer them up. The sky’s the limit! Help whenever and wherever you can and watch, over time, as the world rewards you for your generosity.

Step #3: Create a digital story
Remember, you need something to point to that demonstrates credibility and skill. People like to see what you actually do (more than being told). Thus, you need to create some sort of digital portfolio that highlights your work. This could be a well written Linkedin profile, a blog with some of your ideas written out, a Youtube channel with some videos , a portfolio (if you’re a visual artist– graphic designer, photographer– you need to have your work on display), an About.me page, a public manifesto, etc. This way, when people search for you in Google or ask for more information about you, you are prepared to show them something well put together! This is so important.

Here are some tools to put together your story:
Linkedin: business version of Facebook.
Wordpress: Blogging platform. Free. Highly customizable. Involves some learning in how to use it. This blog uses WordPress.
Tumblr: More intuitive than wordpress but less customizable. Great for showcasing images.

Step #4: Talk about what you’re doing and what you want
(plus FREE BONUS:Quick Video Tutorial #nosellout Self Promotion)
So you got your swag on, you’ve been helping everyone and their mom and you even have a basic site up that looks so sexy. Now what? Now it’s time to talk about what you do and what you want. This seems to be the hardest part for most entrepreneurs so we created a free video tutorial for you here that goes into detail about you can have a conversation about yourself and not sound vain or wacky. Click this link to access our free video. (FYI: this video won’t be available forever and in a few weeks, will actually be taken down. If you don’t want to have to sign up for anything to see it later, go watch now.).

Now– you tell me. Which step would you start with and why? Do you already have an online presence and if you do, can you link share it below too? I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with. Share your answer in the comments below now and let’s get it poppin!

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Do you think too much before you act?

Hugh Jackman vs Chewbacca

It’s always interesting to me when people email me wanting to know more tactics for selling and marketing. It often makes me wonder if they’ve already put into practice the advice they’d already been given.

In fact, it’s kind of rare that I get a question asking for clarification on a piece of advice for someone who is already  in the midst of taking action. For example:

Hey Lauryn,

I just got done reading your most recent post, 5+ Ways to Brand Yourself on A Budget and I decided to upgrade my web presence. I already bought the new URL and the template, but am confused about what platform to use. I really don’t understand WordPress and feel stuck. Any ideas?

Thanks,

Hugh Jackman

Now clearly Hugh emails me all the time. He’s a really devoted reader and super committed to upping his online presence game. ;)

Most of the emails I receive from readers, in fact, sound more like this:

Hey Lauryn,

I just signed up for your free tutorial on getting your first client and it was super helpful, thanks! I hope to one day start a business and use this information!  My kids are in pre-school and once they graduate college, I’m considering going into it full time.

Thanks,

Chewbacca

As you may have noticed, my blog is quite popular with the Hollywood hunks. And I bet you didn’t know Chewbacca had children? What can I say!

What’s the main difference between Hugh’s response and Chewbacca? Both are badass warriors. Both are animals at heart and both are into business and upping their game (they follow my blog so there’s clearly some interest in business).

They key difference is that Hugh takes action and tries out my advice.

Chewbacca just dreams about it.

Yes, Chewbacca devours all the information he can get while working his day job saving the galaxy, but doesn’t try any of it himself. He actually feels a little torn, because while he realizes his work is really important (i.e. saving the galaxy), he also realizes that he doesn’t want to fight anymore. He wants to teach people the power of non-resistance, but that seems cray cray given he’s a top notch fighter.

So he puts it off. Reads and reads and fights, even though what he really wants to do is teach others how to never have to fight in the first place.

Dreams are like frequent flyer miles, as Chris Guillebeau may tell you. They are pointless if you don’t use them. They’re meant to be accumulated only so that you can make use of them in the near future!

Dreams are not like McDonalds french fries folks. They are not resistant to the impact of time. They do in fact have a shelf life. They wither away if not given the proper attention and you begin to hate yourself for not doing what you really want to in life. Trust me, I’ve been there.

So, why aren’t you taking action?

There are 100 reasons why we put off taking action. We as a people are really good at finding incredibly legitimate reasons to not do work, which makes it all the harder to realize when we’re simply in denial of what we really want.

Here are the top three reasons most people don’t take action. Can you relate to any of these?

  1. “I’m too busy”

  2. “I don’t have the money”

  3. “I don’t know what I want to do”

The “I’m too busy”

This is a logical reason, isn’t it? You go to school, have a full-time job, maybe are married with kids and barely have time to work out.

It’s your responsibility to take care of your family and it would be reckless to avoid those responsibilities to pursue something that has a only a shot in hell of succeeding!

Ah! You sold me! Except that you don’t really believe that.

Yes, the anger and frustration is real. Let it out girl!

But, behind that anger and defensive response that hints of a, “How could you possibly expect me to do one more thing when I already do everything!”

Behind that is sadness.

Because not only do you not make time for your dreams, you don’t make time to connect with yourself. To figure out what you really want.

Sad that you haven’t taken the time to develop your own hobbies and interests. That you haven’t started your Etsy shop or really given your blog the attention it deserves, because you really do have great ideas.

Busy is a socially acceptable wall we hide behind. When we’re busy, we don’t have to make decisions. We allow other peoples’ needs and wants make the calls for us. We call that honor. We call that being responsible.

I call it being irresponsible.

We will forever be busy until we choose not to be. Until we set boundaries and ask ourselves what we really want.

I don’t have the money.

And? You don’t need  a ton of money to start a business, not into today’s age. Chris Guillebeau wrote an entire NYT best-seller on how to start a business with $100 or less.

Finding a few hundred dollars here or there to start your business is totally possible.

But this once again requires us to make a decision of where we want to focus our time.

And the fear of failing being so real, we tell ourselves it’s pointless. I could spend that $200 on a new shirt to wow my date. She could be around for the rest of my life, but this business? I must be out of my mind! I have a great job with great benefits. Who am I kidding?

Yourself. You’re kidding yourself.

Following your gut and your natural instinct is your path. Anything you do to stop yourself from that is a well-crafted, most times socially acceptable illusion.

I don’t know what I want to do

Ah, this one plagued me for years. Haunted me. Kept me awake at night and led to various panic attacks.

I was convinced I didn’t know what I wanted to do, when I had a solid, precise starting point.

What was that starting point?

Knowing what I didn’t want.

I knew what I DID NOT want in that exact moment and that was as good as any other life plan, but I was scared. I thought that until I knew exactly what I did want, it was foolish and irresponsible to quit my job or start something new.

But that’s not true. Saying no to one thing immediately invites other opportunities into your life.

Imagine you’re at a dating meet-up. Some guy is talking to you and you’re so not interested. You don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, but you KNOW this isn’t it. You can excuse yourself from talking to this guy and as your mind warns you,  risk being alone the rest of the night.

Or you can continue talking to him.

You already know you don’t like him. If you stay with him, you will compromise for the rest of your time with him. Marriage, kids, the house. You began your relationship on a compromise of your values and desires, so what more can be expected?

But what you maybe don’t realize, is you’re the prettiest girl in the room…

That’s right. You are the pretty girl in the room. The second you pardon yourself from that man’s conversation, there will be 10 other people waiting to chat with you. They were, in fact, simply waiting for you to make yourself available.

The same goes with life and your business.

Knowing what you don’t want is just as good as knowing what you do want.

Top 3 tips smart people use to take action

So you know the most common reasons for not taking action (and we have all experience at least one, if not all three, of them). Maybe you realize there are areas in your life that you could spruce up. Now what?

 Here are three ways to start taking action in your own life and business:

  1. Find an accountability partner. This could be a mentor, a friend or a business partner. It can be in person or online. They need to be someone that is deeply interested in growing, is committed to positive change and facing the obstacles that come with entrepreneurship and has a positive outlook most days. Consider this the equivalent of a workout buddy for business. You should trust them, feel confident they have your best interests at heart and be willing to do a trial run to see if it’s a good fit. You don’t want to be stuck with someone for 6 months out of guilt when it’s not a good mix and not helping you in the way it should. Me and my friend Sophie have partnered to figure out how to help you take action and are putting together a free, in depth training for you folks! Click here to be notified of the free training and check out the testimonial from one of our beta-students below.

  1. Agree to try ONE thing with that partner: Taking the attitude that this is just a test, agree to try ONE new thing with your accountability partner. Maybe it’s writing a blog post or telling a friend about your new idea. The goal is simply to try a piece of advice that you’ve been given (and trust) and hold each other accountable in making it happen.

  1. Remember that we die. We are not immortal (at least I’m not). Steve Jobs said that death is one of the realest ways to get your ass in gear. And he died so young. What if he had said he was too busy, didn’t have the money and wasn’t sure about this whole computer thing? He may have died without ever creating Apple or Pixar. He could have been a “nobody”. But he was a somebody because of he didn’t sit back and let the world tell him who he should be and what he should do and what to put on his eggs for breakfast. Life is fragile folks. Get to to livin’ or get to dyin’. It’s your choice.

What do you think? What do you think is the biggest obstacle to starting your business? Is it lack of time, lack of money or just not knowing what to do? Tell me in the comments below.

– Lauryn

p.s. Next week there will be a chance to grab a FREE, 3-part series on growing your business. If you have had any fear around launching your business or promoting your work, you need to be there! Go here to sign up and be sure you’re notified! It won’t be around forever.

p.p.s. There is a light at the end of the tunnel. You can find a clear, direct, fun way to take action and create the life you want. Take a look at this experience from one of our students from our beta test:

“This course is the truth. It has fundamentally changed my life and how I approach not only the aspects of my business, but all aspects of my life. This is the stuff they don’t teach you in B-school (not even in an M.B.A Program). Lauryn and Sophie teach what actually works. The ideas and strategies revealed will have an instant impact on how you and your business show up in the world. If you want the slight edge… you know, that somethin’ you just can’t put your finger on that makes you someone’s gut choice to do business with, then take this course and join this community now. See you on the other side!” — Theresa Campbell

 

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Fear vs. Love: Which one drives you?

” Motivation is fire from within, only you can light it.” –Anonymous (tweetable)

The biggest assassin of future prosperity isn’t lack of information. In an age where most people have access to the internet, we, if anything, are drowning in information.

No, the biggest assassin of anything worth pursuing is fear.

We call it by many names: anxiety, depression, anger, frustration, apathy, but when you widdle them down to their purest form, they are simply fear.

But fear of what?

And love of what for that matter, because if you endeavor to do anything worthwhile, there is “the love of something” involved as well.

Love of impact.

Love of growth.

Love of fame.

Love of adventure.

Love of [fill in the blank]…

The key to finding our stride in life  is in recognizing if our actions are ones of fear or of love. The true predictor of long term and genuine success isn’t solely in your revenue or net worth, but in whether you move through life from a place of fear or of relentless faith.

The result of continual fear is lack of right action. Either we do nothing at all, fearful of making a mistake, letting someone down or looking foolish (we’ve all been there) or, we take action, but only follow the advice of the masses.

We don’t dare stray into the realm of creativity or possibility, the places where the well worn path cannot possibly take us.

That is where our genius lies and that is the scariest terrain to travel.

But it’s oh-so-worth it.

In this 20 minute juicy podcast, you are going to learn:

  • Figuring out what our calling is (and how we can be comfortable once we know it)
  • The difference between fear and love (and why knowing the  difference is game changing for your business)
  • Why risk isn’t what you actually seek, but this one thing instead
  • How to find focus and peace in the journey, even when the road gets rough
  • Hear some pretty funny analogies that will make you laugh
  • And much more…

Grab a listen below:

 

You folks are the real geniuses around here and I want to know:

What is one example where you took action based on FAITH?

Maybe this felt “risky” and you didn’t know what the outcome would be, but you did it anyway. What specific action did you take what was the outcome?

Leave your response in the comments below (I can’t wait to read them!).

paz y amor,

L

p.s. In the coming weeks, I’ll be unveiling something I’ve been working on for the past 6 months. It’s top secret and if you’re signed up for my blog, you’ll be the first to know!

p.p.s. If you’re not signed up for my blog and you want to be on the in, you know what to do— sign up here.

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