This one piece of advice will save you years of struggle and frustration
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For those of you who don’t recognize them, the men bookending me in this photo are Jim Kwik and Simon Sinek. Jim is a coach for some of the most prominent figures on the planet in business, media, and entertainment. Simon is a world-renowned speaker who has one of the most watched TED talks of all time.
I chose to use this photo for a reason which you’ll soon understand.
If you’re pursuing any sort of passion or entrepreneurial venture, you’re going to be flooded and inundated with advice. This is a good thing. You’ll be overwhelmed with the amount of podcasts you get recommended, and the amount of books you’re trying to squeeze into your schedule.
You’re going to get everyone’s opinion about how and why you should do certain things a certain way, even though at the end of the day it’s your decision. This will make things confusing, especially if they haven’t actually walked your journey before, because their insight may or may not actually be useful.
On top of this, any entrepreneurial journey requires sacrificing stability for independence, being doubted by everyone you know (and yourself), wondering daily if you’re doing the right thing, and experiencing seriously high highs along with many low lows.
It’s rocky terrain to navigate. Hell, even if you’re working a traditional corporate job, it’s rocky terrain to navigate.
Back to my photo:
When I decided to pack up a single suitcase and move to Los Angeles, I knew I was on a mission to make an impact and grow my visibility and brand. I wanted to change lives, speak on more stages, appear on more television shows, coach more clients. But, how would I block out all of the noise that I mentioned before?
I did the ONE SINGLE THING that EVERYONE pursuing a goal should do:
Get off of your ass, and physically put yourself in the same room as people who are at the pinnacle of success.
DO NOT do this to take from them. DO NOT do this to ask to “pick their brain.” DO NOT do this to simply stare at them with googley eyes and walk away.
GIVE VALUE. Contribute. Approach every situation knowing you have something to add. Build relationships. Communicate as a peer. An equal.
If you don’t live where they live, stay in touch. Give more value on social media. Help share their content. Be involved.
Do you know what will happen then?
Not only will you be received more positively, but you will understand the reality that even the people who are at the very top of the mountain you want to climb are human beings just like you. They have flaws, and fears, and insecurities. They have wants and needs and desires.
They’ve failed more times than you’ve even tried – which is why they’re at the top of the mountain. Because they kept climbing no matter what.
Being around the people who already are where you want to be is literally the #1 most important thing you can ever do for yourself. No exceptions.
“But James, I don’t have the money to travel to these places.”
A personal friend of mine took out a personal loan to attend an event that was only for CEO’s because he had no money. At that event, he met someone who ended up agreeing to distribute his product nation wide.
His company’s revenue was $26 million last year.
Why? Because he got off his ass and put himself around the right people.
Listen – I’m not telling you to go broke or to risk being homeless for the sake of pursuing your dreams…but have you ever noticed that it’s very often the people who take massive risks that end up in the most amazing places?
This photo I posted is ONE of hundreds I have from my time living in LA. I didn’t post more because I didn’t want to be self-congratulatory. This is about you and how YOU can pursue what YOU want to do. I am only in a position to give you this insight because I have done it. Again, and again, and again, and again.
My reality shifted when I spent time with these people. The world I left behind seemed like it was a different universe. Things that I had only heard about in books and on TV were literally happening around me as everyday activities nobody thought twice about. Limitations disappeared, and so did the people who believed in them.
If you’ve never been in this situation, this probably sounds like a fairy tale to you. Believe me, I understand it doesn’t make sense, but as the old saying goes, “out of sight, out of mind.” What, then, would the opposite be? In sight, in mind?
It’s not hard to imagine how fully immersing yourself into a whole new reality will fundamentally shift the way you approach the world and yourself. You will begin to make more ambitious decisions. You’ll gain confidence through being more productive. You will 10x your speed moving towards your goals.
Your entire world will shift on its axis and you will become a higher level version of yourself that you even knew existed.
It’s hard. It’s challenging. It’s risky. It’s uncomfortable. But I promise you. I PROMISE YOU: It will be worth it.
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