What 75+ Millionaires, Olympians & More Would Tell Their Twenty Something Self
What would you tell your twenty something self?
featuring 75+ millionaires, CEOs, Olympians, bestselling authors, professional athletes & more world class, inspiring individuals
by Matt Kohn
This project is dedicated to the memory of my role model, Scott Dinsmore.
Scott passed away in September 2015 at the age of 33.
I received his contribution to this post a few months before he passed.
Despite Scott’s young age, he impacted millions through his community, Live Your Legend. He made a career out of serving others, helping them find and do work they loved.
His passing reminds us that we are all on a timeline, and we don’t know when that timeline will end…
We owe it to ourselves and to the world to find the work that makes us come alive. When that happens, not only does it impact you, but it positively impacts all that come in contact with you.
I have just one question to ask you guys, and I think it’s the only question that matters. And it’s what is the work you can’t not do? Discover that, live it, not just for you, but for everybody around you, because that is what starts to change the world. What is the work you can’t not do?
This project changed my life…
After quitting my consulting job in NYC and moving to Medellín, Colombia to pursue my dream of working for myself, it was time to start figuring things out fast…
I was fed up with the fluffy, BS self-help advice that you see online. I wanted valuable, practical advice that I could apply to my life and start figuring things out.
So, I started reaching out to my role models — people who had already achieved the success I was after.
I sent out a few emails without expecting much in return (as my roommate can attest based on my shouting outbursts of “YASSS! Ray Romano emailed me back!)…
But, after a few weeks my inbox was flooded with life changing insights. Before I knew it, I had heard from 75+ millionaires, Olympians, New York Times bestselling authors, super bowl champions and more…
Their insights truly changed my life.
It is now my mission to provide their insights to as many twenty somethings as possible.
This post is the result of 300+ emails sent and 100+ hours of research to connect with these world class individuals. It was a ton of fun.
I couldn’t be more excited to share this with you…
Download and discover the best insights from 75+ millionaires, Olympians, CEOs, bestselling authors, Super Bowl champions and more world class individuals. Click here to download now.
World Class Contributors
(click to jump to contributor’s advice)
- Adam Bornstein: award-winning fitness and nutrition writer, founder of Born Fitness
- Adam Braun: founder of Pencils of Promise and New York Times bestselling author
- Alex Pirouz: business strategist and columnist, founder of Linkfluencer
- Alexi Panos: inspirational author, artist and philanthropist
- Amy Purdy: bestselling author, Olympic bronze medalist snowboarder and social entrepreneur
- Andrew Horn: speaker, social entrepreneur, founder and CEO of Tribute
- Andrew Warner: founder of Mixergy, the #1 startup podcast
- Andrian: entrepreneur, writer and founder of The Quintessential Man
- Arianna Huffington: author and co-founder of The Huffington Post
- Barrie Davenport: certified life coach and founder of Live Bold and Bloom
- Benny Hsu: developer, blogger, podcaster and traveler
- Brett McKay: entrepreneur and founder of The Art of Manliness
- Brian D. Evans: Inc. 500 serial entrepreneur, business coach and founder of Influencive
- Briana Scurry: two time Olympic gold medalist, world cup champion and female soccer legend
- Bronson Taylor: serial entrepreneur, startup advisor, author and co-founder of Growth Hacker TV
- Bryan Clay: 4 time US national champion and gold medal winning decathlete
- Chelsea Dinsmore: owner and chief inspiration officer of Live Your Legend
- Chad Yesilova: Education professional and marketing expert
- Chris Ducker: serial entrepreneur, keynote speaker and bestselling author
- Chris Guillebeau: world traveler, speaker and Wall Street Journal & New York Times bestselling author
- Coss Marte: founder of ConBody
- Daniel DiPiazza: founder of Rich20Something
- Daniel Pink: New York Times and Wall Street Journal best selling author
- Danielle LaPorte: bestselling author, entrepreneur and speaker
- Darius Foroux: author, blogger and personal development expert
- Dave Asprey: creator of Bulletproof Coffee, host of Bulletproof Radio and NYT bestselling author
- David Allen: world leading expert on personal and organizational productivity
- Derek Flanzraich: founder and CEO of Greatist
- Erin Willett: contestant on The Voice, The Biggest Loser and musician
- Guy Kawasaki: Silicon Valley-based business/tech guru, author of thirteen books
- Henrik Edberg: award-winning personal development blogger
- Jake Ducey: internationally recognized author, speaker and millennial motivator
- Jason Khalipa: CrossFit athlete and Crossfit Games champion 2008
- Jasper Ribbers: AirBnB expert, bestselling author, speaker and full-time traveler
- Jeff Goins: bestselling author
- Jenny Blake: bestselling author, career and business strategist and international speaker
- Jeremy Foster: photographer, traveler and blogger at TravelFreak
- Jesse Krieger: serial entrepreneur, speaker and bestselling author
- Joel Runyon: founder of Impossible X and blogger at IMPOSSIBLE
- John Lee Dumas: entrepreneur and founder of Entrepreneur on Fire podcast
- Jordan Harbinger: entrepreneur, podcaster and founder of The Art of Charm
- Josh Coffy: digital marketing expert, speaker and founder of Flight Media
- Kevin Kruse: keynote speaker, leadership columnist and New York Times bestselling author
- Leah Hynes: lifestyle & business coach and co-founder of The Connection Effect
- Lewis Howes: author, entrepreneur and podcaster at The School of Greatness
- Ludvig Sunstrom: author, podcaster and personal development blogger at Start Gaining Momentum
- Marie Forleo: lifestyle expert, bestselling author
- Mark Divine: former Navy Seal, bestselling author, founder of NavySeals.com and SEALFIT
- Matt Brimer: Co-founder of General Assembly and Daybreaker
- Matt Hearnden: self-awareness blogger, writer
- Matt Karsten: full-time adventure travel blogger and photographer
- Matt Michaelewicz: international business expert
- Mike Vardy: writer, speaker, productivity strategist and founder of Productivityist
- Nathan Chan: publisher of Foundr Magazine
- Nathan Latka: software entrepreneur and podcast host
- Nazrin Murphie: lifestyle & business coach and co-founder of The Connection Effect
- Neil Patel: expert online marketer and co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics
- Nick Loper: author, entrepreneur and founder of Side Hustle Nation
- Nick Onken: renowned photographer and philanthropist
- Noah Kagan: marketing expert, taco expert and Chief Sumo at AppSumo
- Paul Angone: keynote speaker, millennial expert and bestselling author
- Preston Smiles: award-winning motivational speaker and author
- Ray Romano: award-winning comedian, actor and star of Everybody Loves Raymond
- Raymmar Tirado: artist, entrepreneur, sales expert and writer
- Ronnie Charrier: traveler, photographer, social media consultant and blogger at Many Many Adventures
- Ryan Holiday: marketing expert and bestselling author
- Sam Briggs: CrossFit Games champion and ‘World’s Fittest Woman’ in 2013
- Scott Dinsmore: entrepreneur and founder of Live Your Legend
- Scott Panchik: 4 time CrossFit games athlete
- Sean Kim: founder of The Growth List
- Sean Ogle: entrepreneur and founder of Location180
- Shawn Achor: NYT bestselling author of the Happiness Advantage and happiness researcher
- Simon Sinek: bestselling author of Start With Why and Leaders Eat Last
- Spencer Brendel: social entrepreneur and founder of PlayHard GiveBack
- Stephen Warley: lifestyle designer, productivity coach and founder of Life Skills That Matter
- Steve Kamb: author, entrepreneur and founder of NerdFitness
- Steve Weatherford: loving husband/father, health & fitness icon and super bowl champion
- Tim Bourquin: former police officer turned multi-millionaire entrepreneur, co-founder AfterOffers.com
- Tom Bilyeu: co-founder of Quest Nutrition and host of InsideQuest
- Tor Refsland: digital strategist, coach, entrepreneur and blogger
- Vince Poscente: Olympian, speaker and bestselling author
- Yaro Starak: author and founder of Entrepreneur’s Journey
I’d like to extend a huge thank you to all the contributors who made this project possible.
Scott Dinsmore: entrepreneur and founder of Live Your Legend
Surround yourself with people who inspire possibility because the fastest way to do the things you don’t think can be done is to hang around people already doing them.
Chelsea Dinsmore: owner and chief inspiration officer of Live Your Legend
Embrace the uniqueness of who you are and give that back to the world. There is exactly one version of you on this planet and that means you have something so uniquely you to offer. Being unapologetically you, is the best gift you can give to yourself and everyone around you.
Arianna Huffington: author and co-founder of The Huffington Post
If I could go back in time, I’d introduce my 20-something self to a quotation by the writer Brian Andreas: “Everything changed the day she figured out there was exactly enough time for the important things in her life.”
Ray Romano: award-winning comedian, actor and star of Everybody Loves Raymond
Don’t be afraid when things get shitty. Cause they will. And it’s gonna suck. But that’s okay. Just don’t be afraid because if you keep moving it always gets better.
So I guess that’s my advice: allow the hurt but not the fear… and keep moving.
One more thing. Don’t touch that squirrel you thought was dead. It’s not.
Bryan Clay: Olympic gold medalist and decathlete
If I could tell my 20ish year old self one thing it would be “Hey, don’t worry, you’re going to win the GOLD!”
But really, the advice I would give is that it’s ok to make mistakes, they are what shape you and make you the person you were created to be.
Keep your feet planted firmly on your foundation, know what you believe and who you are, and things will turn out alright.
Steve Weatherford: loving husband/father, health & fitness icon and super bowl champion
If you want to get what you’ve never gotten in life, you have to do what you’ve never done.
It starts with a vision. It starts with accepting what is wrong in your life, appreciating what is right, but being aware of what is wrong and what you want to improve. That’s your vision.
Your goal is to change something about that. So then you need a vision, a goal, a plan, and the most difficult part – where 90% of people fail – is the execution.
People come up with New Year’s resolutions all the time. But the difference between the people that make those resolutions and the people who change their life with those resolutions is that those people have consistent execution.
Identify what your vision is, where you see your life going. Then you need to develop a goal that coincides with getting you to that vision through a plan.
Then, it’s time for you to separate yourself from everyone else… Go ahead and execute.
Shawn Achor: NYT bestselling author of the Happiness Advantage and happiness researcher
I wish I had known that success would not lead to happiness, but happiness would lead to greater success. I often thought if I got the next good grade, or got into the right school, or got the right job, or got the bestselling book, THEN I would be happy. But success is a moving target for the brain, so every time we have a success, our brain changes the goalpost.
Only after working with Harvard students for a decade and becoming a positive psychology researcher did I realize that the greatest competitive advantage in the modern economy is a positive and engaged brain. And fortunately, happiness is a choice, it just requires dedication, practice, and perseverance.
When we are positive, every business and educational success outcome rises.
So my advice is seek real happiness (not just pleasure) first, and your chances of success rise dramatically.
Shawn Achor has become one of the world’s leading experts on the connection between happiness and success. His research on mindset made the cover of Harvard Business Review, his TED talk is one of the most popular of all time with over 13 million views, and his lecture airing on PBS has been seen by millions. He is the author of New York Times best-selling books The Happiness Advantage and Before Happiness.Back To Top
Sean Ogle: entrepreneur and founder of Location180
Your twenties will set the stage for the rest of your life. If you spend it all wearing a suit and tie and climbing the corporate ladder, there’s a good chance that’s what you’ll be doing until retirement.
Take calculated risks. I quit my job to move to Thailand when I was 24. Worst case scenario? I run out of money, come back and get a new job. At that age (and even at 30 or later), you still have plenty of time to build up a career – and that global travel will only make your resume look better.
Best case? You live the rest of your life on your own terms.
Bottom line, your twenties are the time to take a chance on what you want to do. Your older self will thank you.
Daniel DiPiazza: founder of Rich20Something
I wish I would have taken the time to enjoy my journey more. I’m now starting to catch my breath and do this much more often.
Just taking a second to look up from the chaos and say “wow…this thing is actually working” is pretty phenomenal. Even when we’re having a bad week. Or a bad month.
It’s all gone very quickly. Seems like only yesterday I was squatting down with a notepad and saying to restaurant guests “what can I get you?” I’m realizing now that life will continue to move this fast. This isn’t abnormal. This is normal. Life is here…then it goes. That’s it.
If I could start over again, I’d remind myself to remember and appreciate where I am, not just constantly long for some far-off place I want to be…which, incidentally, I’ll never get to if I’m always pushing the finish line forward.
Yeah, there are more “actionable” strategies that would have been helpful as well in the beginning. Things like copywriting, or setting up websites and all that crap. But I think when it comes down to it, our perceptions of success are always based on where we are going, not where we are now. So if I’d started out already being good at all these things, by comparison, I would still feel scared, anxious and unsure of myself, as all new business owners do.
In taking more time to appreciate my journey, I no longer have to worry about being perfect, I can just focus on doing my best, and over time I know I’ll be a lot more satisfied with my results.
Daniel DiPiazza is the founder of Rich20Something, where he teaches young people how to start businesses that they care about and live happier lives. He is a featured contributor for Business Insider, Huffington Post, Inc, Entrepreneur and more. Follow him along with 250,000+ others on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook
Adam Braun: founder of Pencils of Promise and New York Times bestselling author
Understand that money can be used to buy things or experiences. Those who spend on experiences live the richer of the two lives. Travel as much as possible outside your comfort zone and always challenge your assumptions.
Adam Braun is the founder of Pencils of Promise and the author of the New York Times bestseller The Promise of a Pencil: How An Ordinary Person Can Create Extraordinary Change. Visit Adam’s website here.
Steve Kamb: author, entrepreneur and founder of NerdFitness
If you don’t plan on trying to start your own company right away or going it alone, don’t chase the money with a corporate gig you don’t really like.
Go to work for a small company that you respect/admire and learn as much as you can from them – don’t worry about the job title or how much they pay you, just get your foot in the door and then bust your ass.
Sleep on friends couches if you have to, live as cheaply as possible, and learn about what type of work makes you feel fulfilled.
More money and a company car don’t matter when you aren’t enjoying yourself or making an impact – but it’s tough to go back to a different lifestyle once you start spending money on things you don’t need to try and get happy!
Experiences trump possessions every day of the week, so don’t be afraid to take risks.
Steve Kamb is the rebel leader at NerdFitness where he helps desk jockeys, nerds and average joes level up their lives. Steve has been featured by Forbes, Men’s Fitness and many more. Steve recently authored Level Up Your Life: How to Unlock Adventure and Happiness by Becoming the Hero of Your Own Story.
Amy Purdy: bestselling author, Olympic bronze medalist snowboarder and social entrepreneur
The sooner you embrace your differences and the the things that make you unique, the happier and more successful you will be. We often times try to be something we aren’t which covers up who we really are. We all have a light to shine, don’t hide it, embrace it and share it with the world.
Amy Purdy is a world-class snowboarder, Olympic bronze medalist, New York Times bestselling author and founder of Adaptive Action Sports, a nonprofit helping physically disabled individuals participate in extreme sports. A near death experience at the age of 19 left without both her legs, but thankfully alive after being given only a 2% chance at survival. Less than a year after having her legs amputated, she returned to the sport she loved, snowboarding. Since then she has also made it to the finale of Dancing with the Stars and toured the country with Oprah sharing her remarkable story. Visit Amy’s website here.
Marie Forleo: lifestyle expert, bestselling author
Forget about the elevator speech and enjoy the beach. Just keep growing, keep focusing on serving more people, improving your skills and everything will be just fine.
Marie Forleo is a marketing and lifestyle expert and a bestselling author. Through her personal website she reaches over 500,000 readers in 195 countries worldwide. She leads dynamic training programs that teach individuals to succeed in business and life. Marie is the author of Make Every Man Want You: How to Be So Irresistible You’ll Barely Keep from Dating Yourself!. She was interviewed by Oprah and Tony Robbins and has mentored young business owners at Richard Branson’s Centre of Entrepreneurship in South Africa.
Ryan Holiday: marketing expert and bestselling author
Ryan Holiday is a strategist and writer. He was the director of marketing for American Apparel where his campaigns have been used as case studies by Twitter, YouTube, and Google. Holiday has written 4 previous books, most recently The Obstacle Is the Way, which has been translated into 17 languages and has a cult following among NFL coaches, world-class athletes, TV personalities, political leaders, and others around the world. Visit his website for his favorite book recommendations.
Kevin Kruse: keynote speaker, leadership columnist and New York Times bestselling author
Life is about making an impact, not making an income. And ironically, the more value or “impact” you make, the more the money will come. So don’t try to think up a product or service that will make a lot of money; think of who you want to serve — what market do you want to serve. It’s about who not what. Fall in love with a market, and continue to serve them in all the ways they need.
Kevin Kruse is a keynote speaker and New York Times bestselling author of 15 Secrets Successful People Know About Time Management. He is a Forbes Leadership columnist and was named to the Top 100 Business Thought Leaders list by Trust Across America. Visit Kevin’s website here.
Neil Patel: expert online marketer and co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics
Focus. I tried to do too many things instead of focusing my time and energy onto one thing. If I did that I would have been much further along in my entrepreneurial journey. There is barely enough time in the day to run one business… It doesn’t make sense to run two or three at the same time.
Neil Patel is the co-founder of Crazy Egg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics. He helps companies like Amazon, NBC, GM, HP and Viacom grow their revenue. The Wall Street Journal calls him a top influencer on the web, Forbes says he is one of the top 10 online marketers, and Entrepreneur Magazine says he created one of the 100 most brilliant companies in the world. Visit Neil’s website here.
Derek Flanzraich: founder and CEO of Greatist
My late teens/early 20s were when I most felt the pressure to be like everyone else. I wish I remembered then the only way to build something different and succeed differently is to, well, do things differently in the first place.
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Daniel Pink: New York Times and Wall Street Journal best selling author
Anytime you think you’re the smartest person in the room, you’ve just proved that you’re not.
Lewis Howes: New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur and podcaster at The School of Greatness
Find a powerful mentor and model their success to find yours.
Lewis Howes is a New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, and former professional athlete. He hosts The School of Greatness podcast where he interviews inspiring celebrities and individuals from various industries in order to discover what makes these individuals great. His work has been featured by TIME, Forbes, ESPN, Sports Illustrated and more. Visit Lewis’ website here.
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Noah Kagan: marketing expert, taco expert and Chief Sumo at AppSumo
Chris Guillebeau: world traveler, speaker and Wall Street Journal & New York Times bestselling author
Don’t be so timid.
Chris Guillebeau is an entrepreneur, blogger, bestselling author and speaker. Chris’s first book, The Art of Non-Conformity, was translated into more than twenty languages. His second book, The $100 Startup, was a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller, selling more than 300,000 copies worldwide. He recently published Born for This: How to Find the Work You Were Meant to Do. Visit Chris’ blog here.
Mark Divine: former Navy Seal, bestselling author, founder of NavySeals.com and SEALFIT
Focus on fewer things – and with more passion.
Briana Scurry: two time Olympic gold medalist, world cup champion and female soccer legend
Stay in the present – smell the roses, and be grateful for every experience. Don’t let your youth go to waste.
Briana Scurry won two Olympic gold medals and one World Cup for the United States Women’s National Soccer Team. She is widely recognized as one of the best female goalkeepers in the history of the sport. Being one of the first African American female soccer players as well as one of the first openly LGBT players, she helped significantly diversify women’s soccer. She is now a motivational speaker and advocate for player safety and TBI awareness. Visit Briana’s website here.
Dave Asprey: creator of Bulletproof Coffee, host of Bulletproof Radio and NYT bestselling author
Never underestimate your power of self deception. Put in systems and do exercises to make sure you know what your mission is and that you are truly on it. Money does not equal freedom!
Dave Asprey is the creator of the widely popular Bulletproof Coffee, host of the #1 health podcast, Bulletproof Radio, and author of the New York Times bestselling book, The Bulletproof Diet. Dave’s products and expert knowledge have been featured by CNN, Men’s Health, The New York Times and many more. Visit Dave’s website here.
Brett McKay: entrepreneur and founder of The Art of Manliness
There’s never a perfect time to do anything, so go ahead and do that thing you’ve been wanting to do. Also, achieving goals is a lot more underwhelming than you think they’ll be. Quit thinking you’ll be happy once you’ve achieved them. Enjoy the process. Finally, focus on being useful, not important and you will go far.
Andrew Warner: founder of Mixergy, the #1 startup podcast
Quit feeling that you’re too young for anything.
I remember paying a design firm over $1 mil to furnish my office back when I was in my 20s. My one request for them: “make the office look so impressive that people don’t know that a 20-something guy runs this place.”
What a mistake. Instead of feeling like my age is something to hide I should have either used it as an asset or ignored it completely.
Paul Angone: keynote speaker, millennial expert and bestselling author
Don’t chase your dreams, grow one. Plant it in good soil and consistently water it. Then trust that life will spark life underground. Success in your 20s is about consistency, humility, and many other unsexy words that won’t make the Twentysomething Hallmark Collection. Keep grinding and plowing the ground. And while you do, remember this: The possibility for greatness and embarrassment both exist in the same space. If you’re not willing to be embarrassed, you’re probably not willing to do anything great.
Paul Angone is a millennial expert and sought-after speaker and organizational consultant. He is the author of two books All Groan Up: Searching For Self, Faith, and a Freaking Job! and 101 Secrets For Your Twenties. He is the creator of AllGroanUp.com, a place for twenty somethings asking “what now?”, which has received millions of visitors from over 190 countries. Visit Paul’s website here.
David Allen: world leading expert on personal and organizational productivity
I’d advise myself to relax, keep doing what you feel like doing, and trust that the universe will bring you whatever you need to get where you’re going.
David Allen is widely recognized as the world’s leading expert on personal and organizational productivity. He has Forbes’ recognition as one of the top five executive coaches in the U.S. and Business 2.0 magazine’s inclusion in their 2006 list of the “50 Who Matter Now.” Time Magazine called his flagship book, “Getting Things Done“, “the definitive business self-help book of the decade.” Visit his website here.
Preston Smiles: award-winning motivational speaker and author
I would tell my 20 something self to slow down and remember. I would tell myself and anyone else growing up now that the carrot that you’re chasing in the form of money, love, relationships, fame, sex, cars, and popularity is an illusion.
True freedom comes from falling in love with the self.
That success must first be defined, and then designed based on your highest passions.
That you can live a life of fun, fulfillment and personal power without selling your soul and chasing what society deems important.
And most importantly I would tell myself that no matter what the question, love is the answer
Preston Smiles is like nobody in the speaking or personal development world. Breaking all the rules, Preston Smiles is carving out his own path as an emerging Next Generation Thought Leader. Winning the Millennial Mentor Award by Elixir Magazine, and recently launching his book LOVE LOUDER, Preston is a force to be reckoned with. Generating millions of views with his message of LOVE, AUTHENTICITY and CREATIVITY, Mr. Smiles is making a huge impact with his loyal social media tribe, using his unique gift to make complex ideas simple and relatable. Visit his website here.
Simon Sinek: bestselling author of Start With Why and Leaders Eat Last
“You don’t have to know all the answers, and when you don’t know the answer, you don’t have to pretend you do.”
Simon Sinek teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire others. He is the author of the global bestseller, Start With Why and the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller, Leaders Eat Last. He is best known for popularizing the concept of Why and for the talk he gave that became the third most watched talk of all time on TED.com. Visit his website here.
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Adam Bornstein: award-winning fitness and nutrition writer, founder of Born Fitness
Don’t fear failure. Embrace it and use it as a guide. You’ll waste so much time trying to determine the perfect situation, instead of “learning by doing.” Failures feel like a step back, but if you learn from them, they actually can accelerate the process, narrow your focus, and help you determine what you will do best to have the most impact and success.
Adam Bornstein is a New York Times best-selling author and an award-winning fitness and nutrition writer and editor. He is the founder and CEO of Born Fitness and Pen Name, a consulting agency. He was formerly the editorial director for Livestrong.com and fitness editor for Men’s Health. He has contributed to and been featured in The New York Times, Fast Company, GQ and more.
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Coss Marte: founder of ConBody
Whatever your expectations, whatever you want from the streets or dealing drugs, know that you can obtain those things in the right way. All you need to do is transfer those skills that you’re using in the streets as a way to build whatever it is that you want. If you want it, just put it in your head and you can make it happen…
If I had a mentor at that age that would have told me step-by-step how to get out of the streets and achieve whatever I wanted to obtain the right way, I think I would have been on a much different track in my life…
Taking that short term risk [on the streets] could have you end up anywhere, or have everything taken away in seconds, it’s just not worth it…
By the time Coss Marte was 23 he was making as much as $30,000 per day and more than $2 million a year selling drugs in NYC’s lower east side. He got busted and during his sentencing his prison doctor told him he would die within five years from a heart attack. He was 5’8” 230 pounds. After 6 months, Marte created a new style of working out in his prison cell and lost 70 pounds. After being released in 2009, Marte founded ConBody, a bootcamp style fitness program that helps people get fit, fast.
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Jake Ducey: internationally recognized author, speaker and millennial motivator
I actually followed my own advice and dropped out of college when I was 19. But what I would’ve told myself would be to be patient. I think I would’ve saved myself a lot of headaches if I saw the long-term vision. I think that’s important for any young person to understand. We live in a culture where we want results fast and we give up when we don’t get them. I think it’s important to be able to see 10 years down the road.
Ducey is a two-time published author with Penguin/Random-House, a leading speaker for his generation who has spoken at TED plus corporate events with Accenture, and a leader who has already inspired countless thousands of young people to seek meaningful career success and to make a difference in the world. Visit his website here.
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Danielle LaPorte: bestselling author, entrepreneur and speaker
There’s no such thing as destiny. Life really is what you make it. Your heart is your greatest intelligence. Go to more concerts.
Danielle LaPorte is a bestselling author, inspirational speaker, entrepreneur, and blogger. She is the author of three non-fiction books dealing with topics from conscious goal-setting. Forbes named her blog one of the top 100 websites for women in 2012, calling LaPorte “a contrarian self-help guru.”
Jesse Krieger: serial entrepreneur, speaker and bestselling author
It takes the about same amount of energy, work and effort to accomplish any goal big or small so Think BIG and make sure you’re playing the game that YOU want to win… not the game someone else wants you to be playing. Walking the road of entrepreneurship can be lonely at times, especially when you see other people your age achieving their goals and you’re still having hit-or-miss successes, but do not give up under any circumstances because your dream and your vision are too important to be discarded.
The good news is that you’ll eventually meet others similar to yourself. Help them, ask questions, become friends and support one another.
Success as an entrepreneur is a team effort, and way more fun than going it alone.
Sean Kim: founder of The Growth List
Whatever it is that you want to do, achieve, or be, someone has already done it. Find and build a relationship with that mentor. But that’s only the first step. Figure out who your mentors look up to, and study these people. Because it’s their knowledge and advice that will help you think like your mentor.
Jenny Blake: bestselling author, career and business strategist and international speaker
Meditate. At least 10 minutes daily, ideally 20.
Jenny Blake is an author, career and business strategist and international speaker who helps people organize their brain, move beyond burnout, and build sustainable, dynamic careers they love. Jenny is the author of Pivot: The Only Move That Matters is Your Next One (Portfolio/Penguin Random House, September 2016), and Life After College (Running Press, 2011), which is based on her blog of the same name. Today you can find her at JennyBlake.me where she explores systems at the intersection of mind, body and business. Subscribe to the Pivot Podcast and follow her on Twitter @jenny_blake.
John Lee Dumas: entrepreneur and founder of Entrepreneur on Fire podcast
Chill out. Relax. Look around and smile, as you are likely taking yourself way too seriously. I know I did :). You have plenty of time to go make some business mistakes and recover, and then make some more, so go do it, but always in a way that is providing value first and foremost.
Ronnie Charrier: traveler, photographer, social media consultant and blogger at Many Many Adventures
What would I tell 20 year old me? Go see the world and really talk to the people that you meet.
Listen to their stories and appreciate the miracle it is that you’re both sitting in that specific spot and that specific time having a conversation.
I didn’t really start traveling until I was 25 and it wasn’t until that part of my life started that I realized just how unpredictable and random and breathtakingly beautiful it can be if you’re looking for it. There will good days and bad days no matter what you do and the only thing you have any real control over is your attitude each day.
Barrie Davenport: certified life coach and founder of Live Bold and Bloom
If you feel fear, anxiety, and uncertainty about your life, recognize these feelings are usually not grounded in reality.
Even if you’re afraid, figure out what you feel passionate about, what excites and motivates you, by going out and trying things that stretch you. Use this time of your life to soak up new experiences, new people, and new ideas.
Follow your own path, even if it’s not the one you thought you’d take — or you were expected to take by others around you.
Lean into what life offers you, and try not to resist when opportunities present themselves. It’s all a great adventure, so enjoy the ride.
Barrie Davenport is the founder of BarrieDavenport.com and creator of the top-ranked personal development blog, Live Bold and Bloom, which is read by millions of international readers. She is a certified life passion coach, helping others find and live their inner passions in a way that creates a fuller, happier, and more purpose-filled life.
Jasper Ribbers: AirBnB expert, bestselling author, speaker and full-time traveler
Never let the fear of failure keep you from taking action. Failure is nothing more than a stepping stone towards success.
It’s essential to fail a number of times in order to learn what doesn’t work. Since we have to fail first anyway, we may as well fail fast. So instead of fearing it, embrace it as an integral part of the road to success and achieving your goals.
Benny Hsu: developer, blogger, podcaster and traveler
Don’t worry right now if you don’t know what you want to do with your life.
Your parent’s generation was focused on one job and doing that until retirement. Now it’s perfectly okay to have many interests.
You don’t have to be stuck at doing just one thing. So stop trying to find that one thing you’re meant to do. Instead just follow what excites you and that’ll continually lead you down the right path.
Jeremy Foster: photographer, traveler and blogger at TravelFreak
Do all the stupid stuff you can while you’re in your twenties. You can’t get away with it (as easily) in your thirties.
Andrian: entrepreneur, writer and founder of The Quintessential Man
Become socially and emotionally intelligent. Embrace entrepreneurial thinking. Never stop learning. Question your limits. Listen to advice from people who are where you want to be.
Andrian is an entrepreneur, writer and self-growth enthusiast. He writes about leadership, character development and millennial Issues. He is the founder and chief contributor at The Quintessential Man which is the only online community offering a holistic approach to men’s self-growth and development.
Erin Willett: contestant on The Voice, The Biggest Loser and musician
There are going to be part of this life that suck, and parts that you’re going to fail at. But, you have to have to be grateful for them because you’re going to learn something from them.
When I was that age, I would let things that I didn’t get right the first time around break me or discourage me, so much so that it would prevent me from ever trying that thing again. But I would tell myself to just keep pushing through those struggles and know that there are still lessons to be learned and positives that come from those moments. Be grateful for everything, even the sucky parts.
Erin Willett is a singer and songwriter who appeared on NBC’s The Voice in 2012 where she was a semi-finalist on Team Blake. Most recently Erin appeared on The Biggest Loser where she lost an incredible 87 pounds and placed fifth. Erin recently shared her brand new single, “Out of the Darkness”, an original song and music video discussing her incredible journey. Visit Erin’s website here.
Nazrin Murphie: lifestyle & business coach and co-founder of The Connection Effect
What I wish I could tell my 20-something self – Stop worrying about what other people think and listen to your instinct. Follow you heart, let go of the ‘control’ and be yourself. And, stop being so darned serious. Lighten up and have FUN!
Leah Hynes: lifestyle & business coach and co-founder of The Connection Effect
You don’t have to have it all figured out right now. Where you are at is perfect and an important part of your journey. You are enough and your opinion is as valid as the next. Stop overthinking & start giving yourself permission to have fun!.
Nick Loper: author, entrepreneur and founder of Side Hustle Nation
The actions you take today are your foundation. And that’s not to say you’ll be doing the same things 10 years from now or even 5 years from now, but the connections you make, the skills you learn, and the assets you build will give you a platform to stand on.
Even if it feels like you have to start over from scratch down the road, you’ll still have your foundation. This is tough, because it’s at once the big-picture long-term view, and the day-to-day actions that pay the bills. Be kind, be helpful; it’s a small world.
Just because graduation came and went doesn’t mean it’s time to stop learning. The most valuable skills I’ve learned have all come outside of school.
Nick is an author and online entrepreneur featured on The New York Times, Forbes, Fortune, and speaking at a TEDx event. His latest role is as Chief Side Hustler at Side Hustle Nation, a growing community of aspiring and part-time entrepreneurs, where he also hosts the top-rated Side Hustle Show podcast.
Joel Runyon: founder of Impossible X and blogger at IMPOSSIBLE
Ludvig Sunstrom: author, podcaster and personal development blogger at Start Gaining Momentum
Start commonplacing immediately and force yourself to write something every day, until it becomes as natural to you as breathing. Write–even if it’s only a few bullets to summarize the day and put your thoughts into order.
If you can make just 3 observations or takeaways from each day, that scales over time and really has a positive impact on your ability to learn things and cope with challenges.
Darius Foroux: author, blogger and personal development expert
Listen more to your gut feeling.
Brian D. Evans: Inc. 500 serial entrepreneur, business coach and founder of Influencive
Your ultimate success is inevitable. It won’t come at exact times you want it, nor exactly the way you want it. You will “fail” many times, but that’s sort of the point.
The success will happen. Your success will be much better than you ever imagined, in ways that you may not even be able to see right now. In fact, it’s already happening, you just have to believe in it.
Take a close look at the way in which you use language. Instead of “trying” to do things, just do them – remembering that success will happen, is 100% inevitably, and you can’t do anything wrong.
Finally, check in with your body and make sure that what you believe inside is reflecting right on the outside. Stand up with confidence for everything that you believe in. Don’t make yourself smaller, and remember that you and you alone hold the secret to success.
Brian D. Evans is an Inc. 500 serial entrepreneur, columnist at Business.com, business coach and founder of Influencive, BDE Ventures, Startup Guild and others. His advertising and consulting agency, BDE Ventures, recently ranked #172 on the Inc. 500 list of fastest growing private companies in America. Visit his website here.
Tim Bourquin: former police officer turned multi-millionaire entrepreneur, co-founder AfterOffers.com
As entrepreneurs I think we all have the “shiny object” problem, always chasing the next best idea that comes into our head. It is only with more maturity and age that I think we figure out that any one of our ideas can be a blockbuster – you just have to give them time to work.
I have started many business in the past 25 years and most were profitable. But I would become bored quickly, sell the company too early, and move on to my next idea.
If I could go back and tell my younger self something, it would be to stay focused on one idea long enough to see it really grow and mature. The urge to constantly think the “grass is always greener somewhere else” kept me from realizing the full value of a business idea and then selling it for 4x what I sold it for early.
Be patient and let your business grow into it’s full potential before selling it and moving on.
Chris Ducker: serial entrepreneur, keynote speaker and bestselling author
Be YOU all the time. You’re 100% original and people will appreciate that about you more than anything else.
Nick Onken: renowned photographer and philanthropist
Stay hungry and lose the sense of entitlement. Find security and self worth in who you are as a person, and offer that value to your relationships.
Nick Onken is a photographer, podcast host, and creative entrepreneur devoted to inspiring the world to create their moments and create their life. Nick has photographed personalities such as Justin Bieber, Usher, and Jessica Alba. He has photographed print campaigns for international brands such as Nike, Coca Cola and Adidas and his work has been published in magazines such as Conde Nast Traveler, Cosmopolitan, and Marie Claire. On his podcast, he’s interviewed celebrities such as Usher, Scooter Braun, Stacy London and others. He photographs for the charity, Pencils of Promise as he believes that education is the root problem solver of our world. Follow Nick on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter. Visit his website here
Nathan Latka: software entrepreneur and podcast host
Remind yourself you’re always enough, cut all your safety nets so you have no choice but to win big or you die, and start sooner.
Nathan Latka is a 25 year old software entrepreneur who has driven over $4.5 million in revenue and built a 25 person team as he dropped out of school, raised $2.5million from a Forbes Billionaire, and attracted over 10,000 paying customers from 160+ different countries. He is the host of the Top Entrepreneur podcast where he interviews the world’s top entrepreneurs.
Jason Khalipa: CrossFit athlete and Crossfit Games champion 2008
I would tell my 20 year old self to keep my eyes open. Enjoy the process. All of the ups and downs have led me to where I am today. Learn everything I can from the downs to not have it happen again. Embrace the ups and always stay humble and hungry. I’d remind myself that no amount of money is worth your integrity….always be ethical.
Stephen Warley: lifestyle designer, productivity coach and founder of Life Skills That Matter
1. Practice self-awareness. Learn how to step outside of yourself to be more aware of your strengths, interests and natural tendencies. Monitor how you spend your money, time and energy and be aware of which activities give you the most satisfaction and joy.
2. Write down your values. Of course, as you experiment, your values will evolve. Your values are the foundation for all your thoughts, habits and actions. Without a clear sense of your values, you have no internal compass directing your life on your terms. You end up giving into the whims of external forces and the majority of your decisions are driven by “what other people think” rather than being rooted in your own values.
Stephen Warley is a lifestyle designer. He’s been self-employed for the last 16 years and has spent much of that time researching and experimenting with alternative ways of working. He believes self-employment is the future of working and recently founded LifeSkillsThatMatter.com to help more people make the transition to self-employment.
Josh Coffy: digital marketing expert, speaker and founder of Flight Media
Don’t settle for less. Don’t let others dictate your happiness or future. If nobody calls you “crazy” at least 10 times, you’re doing something wrong. Listen more. Talk less. Travel every chance you have. Find a mentor. Write down 5-year goals for your finance, relationships, career, and spiritual life and multiply that number by 10. Pursue your dreams like your life, wealth and happiness depend on it – because they do.
Josh Coffy is the fully caffeinated founder of Flight Media. He has worked with clients who have been featured on CNN, FOX News, ABC, Dancing With the Stars, E! Entertainment, Golf Channel, MTV, and over 22 other TV shows & movies.
Nathan Chan: publisher of Foundr Magazine
Travel more, and don’t be scared. Life is too short.
Jordan Harbinger: entrepreneur, podcaster and founder of The Art of Charm
My advice would be not to go to college unless I was learning a trade. Soft skills are important and some learned in college but more learned while working in the real world and figuring out what you actually want to do. Most people just go to college because its “the next step” after high school. What they SHOULD be doing is working abroad, becoming fluent in another language and culture, reading a ton and starting side gigs to earn income on the side while finding meaningful work. College seldom, if ever, provides the opportunity to do that.
Jordan is an entrepreneur, podcaster and founder of The Art of Charm. Forbes named him one of the 50 best relationship-builders anywhere and Inc. Magazine calls him “the Charlie Rose of Podcasting.” He teaches people how to dramatically enhance their social lives, personally and professionally.
Guy Kawasaki: Silicon Valley-based business/tech guru, author of thirteen books
Focus on making your prototype, not your pitch, plan, or forecast—or responding to interview questions.
Guy Kawasaki is an American marketing specialist, author, and Silicon Valley venture capitalist. He was one of the Apple employees originally responsible for marketing their Macintosh computer line in 1984. Kawasaki has authored thirteen books and is currently the chief evangelist for the online design platform, Canva.
Scott Panchik: 5 time CrossFit games athlete
The advice I would give to a younger version of myself is don’t take on too much in life. Instead bring quality and presence to everything you are a part of. Time is the most valuable thing you can give to someone. Invest your time into finding and spreading happiness to everyone around you!
Jeff Goins: bestselling author
You will find yourself most contented when you think about yourself the least.
Jeff Goins is a full-time writer and bestselling author who lives just outside of Nashville, Tennessee, with his wife and kids. He has authored four books and frequently speaks on writing, creativity, and making a difference. His website, Goinswriter.com, has been visited by more than four million people from all over the world.
Matt Michaelewicz: international business expert
Always, always follow your dream, but through all the highs and lows of pursuing it, never forget that it might take 10 years or more to reach it. Work hard. Be patient. Success will follow.
Matthew Michaelewicz has 20 years of international business experience with a track record of starting businesses from scratch and selling them for several millions. He has been featured by countless publications, including Time Magazine, New York Times, Newsweek, and Forbes, along with numerous television appearances. Visit his website here.
Alexi Panos: inspirational author, artist and philanthropist
Be YOU. Stop comparing yourself to some idea of who you think you “should” be, and start living up to who you are. The world is waiting for you to show up as ALL of you — so stop hiding. Stop trying to fit in. Stop trying to be a sheep when you were born a lion. Own your gifts, your quirks, your unique brilliance and shine it so brightly for the world to see; be so unapologetically you that it gives others permission to do the same. You only have ONE life in this particular incarnation; don’t waste that time trying to be anything other than who and what you are.
Matt Hearnden: self-awareness blogger, writer
I know you want to stop being who you aren’t. But wanting it isn’t enough. You have to make choices.
Do you know what you’re doing when you’re pretending to be something you’re not? You’re telling yourself, and everyone else, that the real you isn’t good enough.
Is that true? Are you not good enough?
Of course it isn’t true. I know you know it isn’t true.
Also – whether you’re the real you, or whether you’re pretending to be someone you’re not… some people aren’t going to like you. That’s reality.
What better excuse do you need to be who you really are?
Sam Briggs: CrossFit Games champion and ‘World’s Fittest Woman’ in 2013
Enjoy the process and have fun!
Andrew Horn: speaker, social entrepreneur, founder and CEO of Tribute
For me, questions have always sparked the most meaningful, lasting change.
When someone hears advice, they can intellectualize it and “get it,” without ever internalizing it. When someone answers a question for themselves, the insight is understood on a deeper, more personal level and will act as a guide and source of motivation for longer…maybe even their entire life.
So rather than provide my favorite piece of advice, I’ll provide my favorite questions and personal truths below…. If you want to be happy and create meaningful work, start asking yourself (and the people you meet) these questions:
- What do I care about?
- Who do I want to help?
- What do I do that brings me energy?
- What am I naturally good at?
- What do I want to be really good at?
“I’m figuring it out” is a much better answer than “I don’t know.”
One of the reasons I finally dove into the internal journey was because of something a friend of mine asked me around the same time I was graduating, he said “you don’t need to figure it out now, but if you don’t figure it out at 21, you’ll have to do it at 31.
This helped me realize that the yearning for these answers will never go away. Why wait?
I’ve learned that the questions will stay the same, but your answers will change. The important thing is that you keep asking.
Embrace the journey and always remember that the easiest way to find fulfillment is simply helping another human. If you want to change your life, change someone else’s.
Andrew Horn is a speaker, serial entrepreneur and currently the founder and CEO of Tribute. Tribute makes it easy for people to send meaningful collaborative video montages to the people they care about on special occasions. He is on a deep mission to spread gratitude around the globe and already has tens of thousands of people using the site. Follow Tribute on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube and Pinterest.
Matt Brimer: Co-founder of General Assembly and Daybreaker
Productivity can no longer be about doggy-paddling through every task in our checklist as quickly as possible. We humans need time to be creative, calm our noggins, think critically, and have time to ourselves. And give permission for colleagues to do the same!”
Matt Brimer is an entrepreneur, community builder, and general instigator of mischief. He is Co-Founder of General Assembly, where he supports GA’s global efforts around social impact, alumni community engagement, and partnership development. Brimer is also Co-Founder of Daybreaker, a global community and lifestyle brand producing conscious morning experiences around the world.
Kevan Lee: content marketing expert and content director at Buffer
When I was 20 and chasing dreams, I often got quite in the weeds on projects that felt important but might not have been fun, or I felt that I couldn’t waste my time on things that didn’t fit a mold or tie directly with an end goal. Looking back, I’ve learned some of the most amazing lessons just goofing around with different stuff: Starting a blog, coding a website, starting a newsletter.
Matt Karsten: full-time adventure travel blogger and photographer
You’re going to fail. Probably more than once. But that’s ok. Relax. It’s not the end of the world. In fact, failure is a necessary step on the road to success. Learn from it and move on.”
Henrik Edberg: award-winning personal development blogger
If I could give one piece of advice to my 20 year old procrastinating, pessimistic and unconfident self it would be to just take one small step forward at a time and focus only on that small step and nothing else.
Because one small step at a time can quickly become a new habit that sticks with you. Because by just taking one small step forward with a project or outside of your comfort zone you can over time go on a journey to complete a book or getting into much better shape. But also to move forward on a positive path inside of you to build confidence and optimism in yourself and in what you can do with your time here in this world.
That’s at least been my experience. And sometimes I wish that my 20-year old self could have learned this simple but so powerful thing a little sooner.
Zachary Quinn: co-founder of Love Your Melon
One piece of advice I would give to my younger self would be to stay organized. The amount of success and positivity that comes from an organized physical and mental space is incredible. It took me sometime to learn but without organization, I would not have been able to get where I am today.
At one point, I specifically remember having 4 offices – my apartment, a free office given to us by our business school, a storage locker and a tour bus – all filled with event supplies and unneeded items that cluttered both my physical and mental worlds. Consolidating space, getting rid of unneeded materials and organizing has freed up space in my mind to think about what’s next for Love Your Melon.
Vince Poscente: Olympian, speaker and bestselling author
Never make a decision based on fear. Instead, identify all the elements of what you are facing. Minimize risk and assumptions. Then act.
Vince Poscente, one of the most in-demand speakers today, is an expert on Resiliency—the ability to overcome challenges and bounce back even stronger than ever before. He is a former Olympic skier, New York Times bestselling author and is a member of the speaker hall of fame in US and Canada. Visit his website here.
Chad Yesilova: Education professional and marketing expert
Sell first, create later. If you can’t pre-sell your idea or ABSOLUTE minimum viable product, you definitely won’t be able to sell it after you have gone through the money, time and effort of creating the final product.
Decent pre-sales will give you the conviction you need to push through the toughest of times.
Airbnb was born because 3 guys couldn’t pay rent and rented out 3 air mattresses on the floor to make extra money. It worked!
Despite getting rejected by famous VC’s, they pushed through because of the conviction.
Many other iconic names have validated through sales and pushed through to create huge success. I followed suit and I’ll never give up.
If you have conviction and a strong purpose, why would you give up?
Bronson Taylor: serial entrepreneur, startup advisor, author and co-founder of Growth Hacker TV
Every failure is a brick; If you collect enough bricks you can build an empire.
Bronson Taylor is a serial entrepreneur, startup advisor, instructor, author, and the host and co-founder of Growth Hacker TV, where the experts on startup growth reveal their secrets. His products have been featured on Mashable, ReadWrite, The Next Web, and many other places. Visit his website here.
Alex Pirouz: business strategist and columnist, founder of Linkfluencer
Get the mission right and then take massive action everyday, week, day and second. Execute like your business depends on it – because it does.
Alex is the founder of Linkfluencer. His work has been featured by Channel 10, Forbes, Inc, Sunrise, Entrepreneur, Business Insider, NBC News and more, and he currently writes for Huffington Post, HubSpot and Entrepreneur Magazine. He was also a judge at the “Screw Business As Usual 2012 Competition” at the Richard Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship and Anthill Magazine Smart 100.
Spencer Brendel: social entrepreneur and founder of PlayHard GiveBack
I’m now 27 after starting my own business 3 years ago during my senior year of college. One thing that I’d tell my younger self is this: “Truly follow your vision and passion, don’t worry about the haters, be patient and know that if you EXECUTE, things will fall into place and payoff in the long run. It really isn’t about the destination, it’s the crazy journey getting there, so hang on and enjoy the ride!
Spencer Brendel is the founder of PlayHard GiveBack (PHGB) which is a platform that allows athletes to fundraise for training while raising money for social causes. Since 2012, PHGB has been involved with 30+ youth athletes, 25 nonprofit organizations and 50 elite athletes, 4 of whom competed in the Sochi Olympics. Follow PHGB on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
Tom Bilyeu: co-founder of Quest Nutrition and host of InsideQuest
Set the bar ridiculously high, to the point where you’re almost embarrassed saying out loud how much you’re going to achieve from your life. Tell everybody they can expect that level of performance from you, then exceed all expectations. That’s it. That’s the only path to success.
Mike Vardy: writer, speaker, productivity strategist and founder of Productivityist
You need to know more about what you’re interested in so that you can get better at it in a way that makes sense to you.
Nurture yourself with that interest and start the journey to mastery today.
Every day you’ll make measured progress and gain knowledge…and that knowledge coupled with maturity and experience will lead to wisdom. And when knowledge and wisdom begin to intersect you’ll be further ahead if you have more knowledge in the area of interest you want to dive into.
Dive deep because that’s where the treasure is. The best way to dive deep is to learn more. The best way to learn more now is to read more. Then you’ll start doing things better because your intentions will be clearer and your attention will be focused.
Mike Vardy is a writer, speaker, productivity strategist, and Founder of Productivityist. He is the author of The Front Nine: How to Start the Year You Want Anytime You Want, The Productivityist Workbook, and Beyond Trying. You can connect with Mike on Twitter at @mikevardy.
Tor Refsland: digital strategist, coach, entrepreneur and blogger
Find out what you REALLY want to accomplish in life, and that there is no defeat in failing, as long as you learn from your mistakes.
The only difference between people who are successful and those who are not, is that successful people have been falling with their face kissing the pavement hundreds of times more. But they got up and learned from the experience every single time.
Then you need to apply massive action and fail fast. Only through failing can you force yourself to think different. Push yourself out of your comfort zone, adapt and become successful.
Achieving your goals is not rocket science. But it´s hard, and you need 4 essential ingredients:
Ingredient #1 is having a strong why. The stronger your why is, the bigger is the chance that you will actually achieve your goal.
Ingredient #2 is the willingness to sacrifice. You only have 24 hours in hour day, and you can’t do it all.
Ingredient #3 is ability to move forward and complete the important tasks, regardless of whether you feel like it or not. You need to turn yourself into a machine, and complete the uncomfortable tasks, regardless of what happens in your life (yeah, it’s the hard part, I know).
Ingredient #4 is having the ability to take a big hairy goal and break it down into smaller manageable goals. I created a system on this that I call The DUMB SMART system.
You might be thinking “Okay, Tor. That sounds cool, and all that. But does that REALLY work?”.
Judge for yourself.
First time I figured out the 4 ingredients, I was working for one of the biggest companies in Norway, earning six-figures. While having a good and demanding job, I started working for a network marketing company to overcome my fear of public speaking.
I got taught completely wrong and did every possible mistake in the start. I got 41 no´s in a row (most people would have quit after 3 no´s). The harder it became, the more determined I became at succeeding. I told myself “Tor, if you can succeed at doing THIS. Then you can succeed at anything”.
Long story short, I endured, hustled like crazy and cracked the code. I built a network of 1500+ distributors in less than 2 years (while working part-time), spoke on stage in front of 3000 people in Nice. I was also able to buy my first car, a BMW, in cash, and I met my future wife, Sara. In addition, I got introduced to Internet marketing, which lead me to the online business I am running today.
A few years later, when I decided to leave my six-figure job to start my own business, I used the 4 ingredients and I did it again…
I got featured on 158 top blogs in my first 14 months of blogging and built an email list of 3645 subscribers. I won several awards and built a coaching business from 0 to $3000 per month in less than 3 months, and I earned $5500+ is my first launch to a very small email list.
Want to accomplish more in your life?
Find your strong why, be willing to sacrifice, turn yourself into a goal crushing machine and break your big goals into smaller manageable goals.
When a guy from Norway with English as his third language can do this from his home office.
Then guess what?
So can you!
Stop talking, and start implementing some massive action!”
Raymmar Tirado: artist, entrepreneur, sales expert and writer
Honestly, the one thing I wish I knew back then is that life is really just one crazy ass game of make believe. The difference is that in this game there is an unlimited budget, we play for keeps, and most people don’t even know they’re playing. It’s how religion works, it’s how politics works, it’s how sales, marketing, and business as a whole works, and it is most certainly how the media and our social structures work. I’m not saying it’s the right way, just telling you how it is and letting you know that you should learn this early.
So to the 20 year old version of myself: Stay humble, try new things, and never save any energy for journey back home. Forget about the doubters, keep your head up, and always believe in yourself. Forget about what everyone else wants you to believe in and focus instead on how you can influence the world in ways that challenge others to challenge themselves. This is the key to separating yourself from the herd and becoming everything you are on the way to becoming. Stay strong in your individuality and soon others will start believing in you as well as in the things you do. Surviving that journey and showing others the way is what being a leader is all about.
Yaro Starak: author and founder of Entrepreneur’s Journey
Enjoy the process, be patient and focus on what you enjoy the most, not just what makes you money.
Thank you for reading.
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