7 Things Every One Wants to Experience Once in Their Life

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One of life’s great pleasures is what we experience. The things we do and the memories we make will outlast any of our material possessions. Don’t get me wrong, it’s fun to enjoy nice things, but at the end of our life, we won’t be reminiscing over what we owned. We’ll relive those experiences that felt surreal at the time.

There are seven things every man wants to experience at least once in his life. These are things that make him laugh—things that make him cry. They are experiences he will take with him to the grave. If you are a man wondering if these experiences and the consequences they bring are worth it, the answer is YES. Life is too short to live it unfulfilled.

1. A Love So Strong You Know It’s Going to Break Your Heart

There will be that person who touches you in ways words can’t explain. When you’re with them, it’s electricity, and even though you’re getting burned, you want more. You know, at some point, you’re destined to get your heartbroken because you are head-over-heels in love and realize they probably don’t feel the same way.

Breakups are hard, and even harder when the feelings are that intense, but it’s an experience that’s worth it. Love that strong doesn’t often happen in life, and even if it’s for a period of time, the experience and those moments are worth it. Just be prepared.

2. Complete Financial Freedom

Stress related to money has kept many-a-man up late at night. It sucks when you can’t pay your bills, or it feels like you can’t ever get ahead. Every wants to experience true freedom with his finances. He wants to experience all his bills paid off and enough money to do the things he enjoys in life. He longs to have more than enough. Not because money is everything in life, but having freedom from financial stress would be a dream come true. 

3. A Period of Time Without Any Responsibility

As men, we have a lot on our shoulders at any given time. We have family, partners, work, and a thousand other responsibilities. One wish would be some time—even if it’s a little while—to be completely free of anything but experiencing that moment. We want a time to chill, relax, and laugh at crazy memories from the past. (more…)

My 500th Blog Post. Thank You!

ZThere is an audio version below.

I started blogging in June of 2011. I don’t think I took it seriously until January of 2012. It’s been a crazy and fun adventure to get to 500! If you have been around since the beginning, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. I do this for you and always try to give you value.

Looking back there is so much I wish I had done better, but the past is the past. I have shared a lot of those lessons over the years. More than anything, my goal has been to educate. There was a lot of advice I learned along the way that wasn’t helpful—it actually took me farther from my goals. I don’t want you to go through that.

Thinking about the future is kind of overwhelming right now. My business and dream have changed a bunch since I started this blog. It has exploded in a good way as a result of the lessons learned over the last five years. This year is busy.

The One Shift

In 2011, I made $14.37 in my lifestyle business. 2012, I made $37,323. In 2013, the first year I was full time, I made $46,732. In 2014, I made $67,698. I won’t tell you how much I made in 2015, but I will say it was multiple six-figures.

I don’t tell you these numbers to brag.

In the middle of 2014, something important happened that led to what 2015 ended up becoming. I know this is a shift someone reading this will need to make this year to reach that next level on their journey to create freedom and success in their life.

The beginning part of 2014 was great–things were going better than ever before, and it scared me. I kept wondering when I would run out of customers, or for some colossal disaster to happen that would wipe out my business/dream. I had a limited mindset that didn’t understand abundance and opportunity.

In July of 2014, I read three books that helped me make a shift to a prosperity mindset: Just Blow It Up by Dixie Gillaspie, Essentialism by Greg McKeown, and The One Thing by Gary Keller. (more…)

3 Ways to Find Paid Public Speaking Engagements

9k=Finding paid speaking is one of the things I teach in Exposure through Large Publications. Registration closes on February 8th.

Speaking is a dream of many entrepreneurs. To get onstage in front of a room of people who are eagerly awaiting your every word is appealing. The income and impact are also great motivators.

To book paid speaking, however, has been a struggle for a large percentage of entrepreneurs. All over the world, there are thousands of events every day, but finding the ones that pay can be a needle in a haystack.

There are speaking agents and bureaus that offer to help, but the results haven’t been impressive. Most of these services only offer to get you leads, but there are three ways you can book paid speaking on your own and for free if you’re willing to put in some legwork.

1. Target industry associations.

Whenever we think of a conference, we think of an event like New Media Expo. However, these large events do not pay most of their speakers. Because they’re so popular, many speakers gladly come and speak for free to gain exposure and new contacts.

If you want to book paid speaking, your best bet is to speak at the conferences of industry associations. These industries could be healthcarelawyersauto, and so on. Speaking for these associations doesn’t mean you have to talk about their industry.

You can talk about topics to help their industry, and these are the topics they want to learn more about. They are looking for new skills and strategies to help improve their industry. If you’re a social media expert, for example, you could have a talk about social media marketing strategies healthcare institutions need to incorporate.

Industry associations have budgets to pay speakers and are always looking for new and interesting entrepreneurs. You can find these associations with a simple Google search. Also, many of these and other conferences around the world can be found through a website such as Lanyrd.

2. Book consulting at companies.

Last year, companies paid outside consults $39.3 billion dollars according to Business Week. These companies bring in consultants to train on every topic imaginable. While you might not get the experience of speaking for a crowded room, you can still generate income and make a difference at a global company. (more…)

3 Ways Successful People Think Differently

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Your mindset affects what you believe is possible, and that will dictate what actions you take in your life and business. Your thoughts will either help or hurt your business. The way you think is one of your most valuable assets as an entrepreneur. Successful entrepreneurs understand this better than most.

Cultivating a strong mindset is a lifelong process, but today we have access to books, blogs, podcasts and videos that help us learn, grow and accomplish our goals. Successful entrepreneurs make learning and understanding themselves better a priority.

This year, I saw firsthand how the important it is to think differently. Having the right mindset led to explosive growth in my business. Here are three ways successful entrepreneurs think differently that helps them grow.

1. They realize excuses don’t lead to results.

Excuses stifle progress. Successful entrepreneurs understand how detrimental they can be and recognize them when they start to creep up. They do their best to control problems and issues head-on. They don’t run away and they don’t blame someone else.

When things don’t go as planned, it feels easier to avoid dealing with the issue, especially if it’s our fault. Word of mouth is one of the most powerful forms of marketing and excuses will kill your reputation. Don’t let excuses have any part of your business. Realize that roadblocks in are overcome when you don’t pretend they’re not there.

2. They accept failure as valuable life experience.

Successful entrepreneurs understand that failure teaches you invaluable life lessons, and they learn instead of giving up. They view failure as a sign that they’re continuing to grow in their life and business. (more…)

5 Fears I Overcame to Become an Entrepreneur

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The freedom entrepreneurship can provide is priceless. Being able to set your schedule and earn an income based off of the value you provide is appealing. There are many enjoyable parts of an entrepreneur’s life, but life isn’t a movie, and there are challenges and struggles every entrepreneur will face. These challenges are especially strong when you’re starting a business.

Fear kept me stuck in a business I hated because the money was good and pretty much guaranteed. I had a full plate of customers, but the work felt like it was draining my soul. My dream was to create a lifestyle business that allowed me to write, speak and consult. I had to beat these five fears to make that dream a reality.

Fear isn’t a negative thing if you understand it. Starting or growing a business is a hard enough task on its own. When you add in fear, it can feel impossible. Here are five fears you may need to overcome to build your business.

1. Losing my steady paycheck.

Knowing how much money you have coming in, and having it come steadily, makes you feel secure. The income from a business is sporadic at times if you don’t have systems in place. I was terrified of leaving that consistent check from the same customers I had dealt with for years. This idea of making money online didn’t feel safe at first.

I conquered this fear by realizing that there is no such thing as a steady paycheck. Job security is a thing of the past. We see that played out every day. You can create more reliable income in your business with a plan. You should have a plan for promotions and how you will make money each month. You then schedule your content around what you’re promoting.

2. What will I do with more free time?

When I chased this dream on the side, I used every minute wisely. I would get home from my business and work for three uninterrupted hours every day. This helped me build my online business to profitability in a year. No time was wasted, and the side business grew as a result.

This idea of having all this free time brought on fear. I worried I would watch more Netflix than work. For the first two months in my lifestyle business, that was the case. Don’t fear having free time, fear not having a plan for that free time. If you set a realistic schedule for yourself, you can be even more productive than when you were in a day job. (more…)

Success is NOT About Money. It’s About Creating Freedom

IMG_0043There is an audio version below.

I’ve had some cool wins in the last year, but I’ve also had just as many (if not more) losses/lessons. I was rejected 36 times by various publications in 2015 (even some that I was already a contributor to). I lost two coaching clients (as in, they got a refund). I lost the opportunity to speak at four different events (in some amazing countries) because we couldn’t agree on terms. I lost focus more times than I can count, and I let envy sidetrack me for months.

The wins are glorious, but the “losses” are what help us grow. They teach us to be grateful for the wins, and they help us develop thick skin/determination. For some, they defeat, and that breaks my heart.

Success isn’t an end destination. It’s a constant journey to be the best version of yourself and make a positive impact on those in your life and this world. Success isn’t about money or speaking gigs, or viral articles.

It’s about what impact those opportunities have, and how they help someone’s life as you share your truth. I don’t view the failures as losses. I think of them as valuable lessons in shaping my path.

There Are Many Ways to Make Money 

If you’re chasing success because you want to make a lot of money, you can probably achieve it. Despite how the news tries to portray our economy, we know the Internet and social media have created tremendous opportunities to make a significant income. There will always be ways to make some or more money, but money, as a goal, is hollow. Success is about more than money.

The money should be to give you the freedom to live comfortably. I think most people desire to live a life free of financial stress. There are ways to make enough or more money to get to that point in your life. Having the right mindset related to money makes all the difference in the direction you take. 

Freedom Gives You Control

The main reason to work on making some money is to achieve freedom. Each of us longs to live life completely free—and that includes freedom from financial stress. But, it also includes control of your time. Each of us wants to spend every day on the things that are important to us. (more…)

5 Attainable Opportunities That Come From Large Publications

6825509595_38897f7c6e_zThere is an audio version below. If you want specific helping getting these opportunities, check out Exposure through Large Publications. Registration is open. New York Times bestselling author, Dan Miller, was the first person to join the new class.

2015 was a surreal year in my life and business. If you follow my blog or social media accounts, you have been on this journey with me. After a year a half of writing for The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur Magazine, The Good Men Project, and Mind Body Green, the opportunities started to find me.

I spoke all over the world; I got hired for some major consulting gigs, and my business grew by 150%. What excites me the most is that you can follow the same path. It probably won’t work out exactly the same way, but the opportunities are there when you take action. There are five benefits that come from the exposure a large publication can give you.

1. Growing a Larger Email List      

When you write for websites that get millions of visitors, a few of those readers are bound to be curious. They read one of your articles and check out your bio. If the bio matches what you’re writing about, they will click back to your website. If you have a strong freebie for your email list—they’ll take the bait and sign up.

In the last year and a half of writing for publications, my email list has grown from 3,263 to over 30,000 subscribers today. As I’ve consistently put articles out on ten publications, the growth has accelerated. This isn’t some Internet Marketer secret that will cost you money to learn. If you write for large publications that get millions of visitors, you will grow a larger email list as you publish articles. It’s that simple.

2. Consistent Book Sales  

One cool feature of most publications is that they have a book widget that allows you to display your books. For the ones that don’t, you can link to your book in your bio. When someone is digging your article, it’s a natural decision for them to get more through your book. It’s one click, and they’re on Amazon buying it. In all of my years in this space, it’s one of the most consistent ways I’ve encountered for steady book sales. You even get the big spikes from time-to-time (I’ve had several 2,000 books sold days when an article went viral).

3. More Coaching Clients 

When you write for large publications, you’re viewed as an “expert.” I just cringed when I wrote that because I hate that word, but it’s the truth. You’re writing for places that have names everyone would recognize. You can tell a potential client that you guest posted for “so and so’s” blog, but if they’re not in this space, they will have no clue who that is. (more…)

6 Mistakes to Avoid When Pitching Large Media Publications

2429133381_aaf3c798f2_zThere is an audio version below.

It’s exciting that you can get your content featured in front of millions of people, but it’s not easy. Don’t get me wrong, you can do it, but only if you approach the editors and the publication in the right way. As an editor for The Good Men Project, I see some great pitches and some that have me shaking my head.

Getting exposure through large publications is a killer strategy for building an email list, your business, and creating opportunities. The key is to get in, and that has to be done with some care. Here are six mistakes to avoid when pitching. These mistakes have gotten many a writer rejected.

1. Don’t feel or come off as entitled.

One of the biggest turn-offs for editors is when someone approaches them with an entitled attitude. You may be some super entrepreneur who has done great things—that doesn’t matter or impress an editor. It’s all about the article.

Check your experience at the door and approach an editor from a place of how you want to make a difference on that publication. The credentials are great, but not necessary if you’ve done your homework researching what articles work for that specific publication. Check the tone of your email and DON’T make assumptions.

2. Fix the grammar and formatting. 

This is an easy fix, but one that keeps too many writers from getting accepted. You should submit your final version and that version should be as grammar free as possible. Use an amazing tool like Grammarly to correct most mistakes.

Also, the formatting in your article should be solid. There should be no awkward spacing, one space after the period, your main points and the title of the article should be bolded, but don’t go nuts with bolding throughout the article. If an article looks like it will be too much work, an article will reject it. (more…)

5 Tips to Get Published on the Largest Websites in the World

Screen Shot 2016-01-03 at 1.30.19 PMThere is an audio version below.

As a writer, podcaster, or YouTuber, you can get your content featured on some of the world’s largest websites. You can get exposure to millions of loyal readers who would be curious to see what else you’re up to. There’s no better way to build an audience and business in the online space today.

You’ve probably heard me talk about same audience syndrome—this is common today. Large publications offer you a chance to get massive exposure to an untapped and always changing audience. You can leverage that exposure to build and land bigger opportunities. Here are five tips to get accepted as a contributor.

1. Stop listening to self-limiting beliefs. 

Whenever I talk about this stuff, I hear a lot of the same responses. People feel as if they’re not a writer, or that they’re not a good enough writer. There is also a fear that can come from putting yourself and your words out there in front of millions of people.

If you are going to write an article that gets accepted, you have to get over those fears and self-limiting beliefs. They WILL show up in your writing if you don’t. One of my rock star coaching clients is Anya Hollis. This week, she had her first article published on The Good Men Project and caught a lot of flak for speaking her truth. She didn’t let it stop her from writing. Today, she became a contributing writer for The Huffington Post! She wasn’t published anywhere before sending in these two articles. If you’re wondering if you can write for the largest websites in the world despite your experience, the answer is YES. 

2. Research each publication individually. 

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to write an article and then see where you can send it. The articles that get accepted are written specifically for that publication. As an editor, I can tell whether or not an article was written for our publication. Start with researching what that site publishes.

Study the style, the length of the posts, the point of view the posts are written in (first or third person), and what topics their readers respond best to. Take each publication one at a time and get a deep understanding of what they publish every day. Your research is what will help you write the best kind of article and one that an editor will say YES to.  (more…)

The Opportunities Are Bigger Than You Think

IMG_4887There is an audio version below. Don’t miss out on Freedom through Online Business. It’s practical at a great price :)

I’m a high school dropout.

I had a difficult upbringing that involved a lot of physical and mental abuse. At 17, I chose homelessness over being beaten with a lamp cord. To survive, I had to get three jobs, and that meant dropping out of high school.

My dream was always to be a writer. I had written since I was young and had big plans for my words. During the survival period of my life, I gave up my dream of being a writer. In fact, I hated writing because it was a dream that I could never do anything about.

I did get off the streets and met the love of my life while working at Burger King. We got married and started a life together. The next 12 years weren’t great, but better than how I had grown up. In 2011, everything in my life fell apart.

The debtors were coming for their money, my bread business was falling apart, and my marriage was collapsing before my eyes. It was during this time when I couldn’t talk to anyone else that I found writing again. Once I started, I couldn’t stop.

Today, almost five years later, I’m the author of four books—three of which have been traditionally published. My books have sold over 100,000 copies and counting. I also have the opportunity to write for major media publications—some free and some paid.

Think about that: a high school dropout who writes for the largest websites in the world. Each month, my words are read by millions of people. This exposure took my lifestyle business from $50,000 in 2014 to over $200,000 last year (2015). (more…)