“When we make music we don’t do it in order to reach a certain point, such as the end of the composition.
If that were the purpose of music then obviously the fastest players would be the best.
When we dance, the journey itself is the point. When we play music the playing itself is the point.”
- Alan Watts (1915 – 1973)
Alan Watts was a British philosopher, writer and speaker, who held a master’s degree in theology and a doctorate of divinity. He wrote more than 25 books and numerous articles on subjects from personal identity to the meaning of life to the pursuit of happiness.
Almost 40 years after his death, the creators of South Park capture one of his speeches and help us remember that we tend to approach life as a journey… with a serious purpose at the end… called “SUCCESS”.
But we miss the point, the whole way along.
Life is a musical thing and we are supposed to sing and dance as the music is being played.
One of my coaches is the Supercoach, Steve Chandler. And this year, Steve created Club Fearless.
Club Fearless is an amazing club for people who want to express their unlimited nature without waiting for permission to do so. Its a worldwide network of people committed to personal freedom from fear and self-victimization.
Since Steve is the author of 22 books, on personal and business success he knows a thing or two about facing your fears and creating powerful ways to move forward to achieve amazing things in life.
I was fortunate enough to be invited to be interviewed for a private podcast for Club Fearless members and I have been given permission to share this interview with my own blog readers. That’s you!
You’ll hear me share my personal story and the real reason I help so many people build their confidence. You’ll hear the amazing results my clients get when they set Impossible Goals. And you’ll hear how the worst moment of my life became a stepping stone for creating the great life I live now…
0:20 How did you get started in the Confidence business?
1:00 Natural Confidence
1:30 I was terrified, nervous and insecure...
2:00 Why confidence and not creativity or intelligence, etc?
2:55 If only I had more confidence...
3:30 Confidence doesn't really exist
4:08 Take action: contacting Richard Branson & making $200,000
5:16 IMPOSSIBLE Goals
5:45 What is YOUR Secret Dream?
8:52 What do you REALLY want?
9:35 What makes you come ALIVE?
10:47 You're Fired!
11:42 Live your life as an Adventure
12:47 The Worst Moment of My Life
13:43 The Courage to take your Big Leap
14:27 Deep Coaching
15:21 60 of The World's Most Confident People
16.59 Ask what makes you come alive, and go do that...
Part 2 of a letter to my unborn son. Please not that he is also – as yet – unconceived… But thanks anyway for all the notes of congratulations!
3. What they told me: “Set Realistic Goals…”
I was always taught to set SMART goals, son.
You’ll hear about them soon enough. Specific. Measurable. Attainable. Realistic and Time-related.
Now in theory that’s a fine theory…
And it works pretty well for managing projects. Hey, it can even work fine managing a career.
After all, I set myself SMART goals for years and I lived a fine life. I slowly rose up the ranks in my field and I became more and more successful.
But something was always missing for me, son.
You see, I wanted to live a wonderful life. I wanted to live my life as an adventure. I wanted to follow my heart and do only what I love.
And I had no idea that I had been creating the walls of my own prison…
What I learned: “Set IMPOSSIBLE Goals…”
In the past few years I have been supporting my clients to set Bold Goals, Impossible Goals and even Outrageous Goals!
I saw a client, fired from a job in the Finance industry, be offered 3 jobs in a week – during the worst financial crisis in recent memory.
I saw clients create hundreds of thousands of dollars in a matter of days.
And I saw clients create partnerships with world-class entrepreneurs, when people had said they’ll never help YOU…
As for me, in the first six months of this year, I actually overshot BOTH of my own Impossible Goals!
I offered my Instant Confidence session for free as a way of supporting people in need of a dose of confidence at the start of the year and I ran ran over 500 of them with people in over 20 countries in less than four months.
I interviewed over 60 of The World’s Most Confident People for the book I’m writing. And recently I was invited to fly to Rome to interview Andrea Bocceli, the Opera singer.
Not only that, I’m deeper in love with Monique (your mom) than ever before. I am loving my career working with some of the world’s most amazing people, and I’m turning The Confident Woman’s Salon into my most unique, intense and powerful coaching program ever.
So don’t limit yourself, son. Don’t listen to other people’s limitations. You can do anything. Seriously, anything.
In fact, in my experience, the more Impossible your goal, the more chance you’ll achieve it. But you know what, lets say I’m wrong – you’re gonna have a pretty awesome life shooting for the moon!
I love you.
“If you think you can do a thing or think you can‘t do a thing, you‘re right.”
- Henry Ford
Not only are you not yet born but – as far as I know – you’ve not even yet been conceived…
However, it feels like time to write to you.
I’m not going to tell you how you should live your life – without a doubt that would result you doing the very opposite of every piece of advice I offer you!
Instead, I’ll share with you the ‘traditional’ guidance I was offered and the ‘non-traditional’ lessons I learned on my own journey.
And I’ll leave you free to create your own amazing life…
1. What they told me: “Don’t Stand Out…”
I lacked such confidence as a child, son.
I recall my first day in high school at 11 years old. The teachers told us that from now on we would be addressed by our last names. And I still remember thinking that’s horrible, I want to be called by my first name.
But I did nothing. In fact, it didn’t even cross my mind that I could say what I wanted to the teachers.
So, I watched in awe as one other boy – who was later to become a great friend of mine for many years – said no. He simply said no to the teachers. He said he wanted to be called by his first name.
And what seemed crazy to me at the time, they agreed. He was the only boy in the entire school who was called by his first name.
Why didn’t I ask the same thing?
I was simply too focused on fitting in. I wanted to be accepted and I wanted to be liked.
In fact, I spent most of my life trying to be accepted and to get people to like me..
What I learned: “Don’t Give a F**k…”
It took being fired, and leaving my dream home, to live in a hut on an island in South East Asia, for this to really hit me.
One day I noticed – 3 whole months after I’d lost my job – that I was still telling people my old job title. The thing was, I hadn’t done that job for months. And no one really cared.
I’ve always admired those people who followed their hearts. Those people who took risks; ignored other people’s advice and trod their own unique path in life.
And one day, I discovered that I was becoming one of them…
I’d sold my house at a time when everyone advised me not to (property is the best investment you can make, they warned me back in 2006!) I resigned as CEO of a large coaching company when everyone said that staying would be the best thing for my career.
I proposed to Monique when I’d known her for only 10 days and everyone said I was crazy! And I stayed in love with Monique when she left me to pursue her dreams. (And now we’re back together, stronger than before).
It took many, many years for me to discover that the less I worry about what other people think of me, the more I get to live an amazing life…
I can’t think of a better description for this than “Don’t Give a F**k!” – Not in a disrespectful way, more like the quality you have when you can dance as if no one is watching!
“Don’t compromise yourself. You are all you’ve got.”
- Janis Joplin
2. What they told me: “Build your confidence…”
So I did. I spent years learning ways to become more confident.
And none of them worked.
Well, some of them did in the short term. For example, I did get incrementally more confident at speaking in public, meeting women and having job interviews, etc. But they never really worked at the deepest level. You see, on the inside, I was always worried what people were thinking of me. I was always scared they would find out that I didn’t have it all worked out.
I felt terrified on the inside. I felt like a fraud at times. And I did everything I could to hide that from you.
Except, of course, what you resist persists…
The more I tried not to be scared, the more scared I was on the inside. The more I tried to ‘fake it til you make it’ with my own confidence, the less authentic I felt. And the more I tried to prove myself, the less I was admired by my bosses, partners and friends.
What I learned: “Build Your Natural Confidence…”
I spent over 15 years as a teacher – in schools from inner city London to rural Africa. And I noticed one single quality that defined whether my students were going to be successful in the future or not.
Now, I don’t mean successful at school which – lets be honest – is defined by the number of facts you can regurgitate about The Vikings, The French Revolution or equilateral triangles.
I mean real success.
Success in life…
Falling in love. Creating great relationships. Doing what you love. Making an impact in the world. Generating money when you want to. Having great friendships. Taking risks. Doing things others tell you are impossible. Having your heart broken. Falling down. Failing spectacularly. And getting up and starting all over again.
That ability was defined by a quality I saw on rare occasions in my students and I now get to nurture in my clients.
It’s what I call ‘natural confidence’.
A sense of ease in yourself. A sense of being comfortable in your own skin. And an ability to be truly ME…
‘Being me’ is the only way I have discovered to build my natural confidence.
It isn’t always comfortable. Its definitely not the easy road. And there is no map for ‘Being me’ (Lets face it, there has never been a ‘me’ on this earth before. Ever!)
But the less I hide, the more I follow my heart and the more I trust my intuition – the more amazing my life becomes and the more successful I become.
Why did nobody ever mention that to me when I was young?”
“Don’t ask what the world needs.
Ask what makes you come alive and then go do that.
The world needs more people who have come alive.”
- Howard Thurman
To be continued…
Well, do you have a coach? she asked with a wry smile…
Actually, I have three right now, I said.
What! she exclaimed. What do you need three coaches for?!
Oh, I said, I don’t need any of them. I want them…
Now it was my turn to smile!
You see, I had been talking to a woman who was interested to join the Confident Woman’s Salon. She was powerful and passionate and had achieved a great deal in life. Exactly the kind of woman this program is for. Except this program is by referral or interview only.
So I had spent the past two hours with her to find out all about her. What is she passionate about? What are her dreams and her goals and her aspirations? And what would she absolutely love to achieve in life – if only it didn’t feel IMPOSSIBLE right now.
I know, it sounds crazy, but everything I do these days is aimed at helping my clients CREATE THE IMPOSSIBLE…
One client recently created $40,000 in 24 hours and another $200,000 in two days. The latter has just chosen to up her game and is working on a challenge to create $1.5 million dollars in thirty days!
So, why do you want three coaches then, she asked me?
Well, I’m coached by Michael Neill, the author of Supercoach, because he helps me dream big – bigger than I’ve ever dreamed and he sees my true potential and he believes in me and he inspires me. And he helps me Create the Impossible…
And I’m coached by Steve Chandler because he helps me make outrageous requests. And he challenges me with crazy statements like “Forget marketing! You can do business for the rest of your life with just the people you emailed in the past 30 days.”
And I’m coached by Adam Gilbert because he is passionate about health and fitness and nutrition and he kicks my butt if I don’t keep my commitments.
I’ve actually spent over $100,000 on coaching in the past two years, I said.
And her jaw dropped.
Actually, once I was down to my last $3,000 in my bank account and I was scared.
One month’s expenses. That was it.
That it would run out.
Completely run out…
And then I read an article by Michael Neill where he said – if, as a coach, you are not prepared to spend more money with your own coach than you feel comfortable spending, then why would your clients ever do the same with you?
And in that moment I knew.
I knew that I had to sign up for Steve Chandler’s Coaching Prosperity School.
Only it cost $9,000…
It was crazy. I’d be using almost every last cent I had, for the $3,000 deposit.
AND then I’d still have to pay an additional $5,000 over the coming six months.
But Steve is the creator of Club Fearless, the author of 20 books, and a success coach for CEOs, top professionals, major universities, and over 30 Fortune 500 companies. He has twice won the national Audio of the Year award and he’s been called “the most powerful public speaker in America today.”
I knew I could learn a great deal from this guy.
In fact, Steve believes in the power of coaching so much that he just signed a four-year contract with his own coach. And his coach, Steve Hardison, charges $150,000 a year for his coaching. You pay it all up front. There are no refunds. And you have to fly to Phoenix, Arizona for your coaching sessions!
So I did something crazy.
I sent Steve the check.
I used up all my savings.
And I joined his program…
And then something strange happened – in just over 2 weeks after my first session with Steve, I created $16,000.
I had doubled my investment in a few days.
And then over the next three months, I created over $70,000.
You see, I don’t need a coach.
I love having a coach!
Actually, I often love having several coaches.
They challenge me. They support me. They focus me. And they sometimes kick my butt.
They hold me accountable. And they inspire me.
They see me as bigger than I see myself. And they refuse to listen to my story.
And they help me Create the Impossible.
So YOU don’t need a coach.
In fact, nobody needs a coach. (Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise)
But you might WANT one!
Sometimes someone says something so eloquent and so moving that there is very little left for me to add.
Today is one of those days.
James Valvano, nicknamed Jimmy V, was an American college basketball coach.
While head coach at North Carolina State University, he won the 1983 NCAA Basketball Tournament against high odds. He is remembered for running up and down the court after winning the 1983 NCAA championship, seemingly in disbelief and looking for someone to hug!
Just ten years later, Jimmy V was in the midst of a year-long battle with cancer when he gave a speech at the creation of the V Foundation for Cancer Research.
“Time is very precious to me. I don’t know how much I have left and I have some things that I would like to say. Hopefully, at the end, I will have said something that will be important to other people too.
People say to me how do you get through life or each day… To me, there are three things we all should do every day.
- Number one is laugh. You should laugh every day.
- Number two is think. You should spend some time in thought.
- Number three is, you should have your emotions moved to tears – through happiness or joy.
Think about it. If you laugh, you think, and you cry, that’s a full day. That’s a heck of a day. You do that seven days a week, you’re going to have something special…”
Jim Valvano died less than two months after his famous speech.
Thank you Jimmy. This morning I laughed with my wife. I spent time thinking, during a call with a client who is literally changing the world. And I cried.
I cried when I watched your video.
The motto of the Jimmy V Foundation for Cancer Research is “Don’t give up, don’t ever give up.”
Exactly 77 days ago, a buddy and I began a very low profile program called “90 Days to a Body You’ll Love for Life”.
If you’re wondering why its low profile… Well, we created it – and we’re the only two in it!
The idea was that we would email each other every day for 90 days. We would write down the exercise we did each day. And we would write down the food we ate each day. And we would not coach each other, give advice or guidance in any way.
The first 30 days were kind of strange. I sent my email to Jamie every day. But not a lot happened. My diet didn’t change and I barely worked out.
But I did get more and more conscious of the POOR food and exercise choices I was making. Day after day…
I’ve sure done a lot of things in my life that scared me.
I’ve definitely done a lot of things in my life that were unconventional.
I’ve even done more than a few crazy things…*
But I’ve never done anything IMPOSSIBLE.
“One can’t believe impossible things…” said Alice.
“I dare say you haven’t had much practice,” said the Queen.
“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
_______________________________________________- Lewis Carroll
Sean Stephenson was expected to die at birth. He has a rare bone disorder and suffered more than 200 bone fractures by age eighteen. He reached a height of only three feet, and is permanently confined to a wheelchair.
He is also a friend of Bill Clinton, Tony Robbins and Richard Branson. He is also truly the most inspirational and naturally confident man I have ever had the privilege of spending time with…
I need your help.
I could feel the pain as I read this next message. It was sent to me after my post “Am I in a bad mood because they’re bastards or is it the other way around?”
I like your post but what if the person you are dealing with is your husband and he makes you feel down all the time. You just found out he had an affair for 2 years and he expects you to forgive and forget and continue. Then things get really tricky when you have kids and you don’t want packing and leaving to be the first option…
So it’s been 5 months now since I have found out but still am in a wait and see situation. Should I just say enough is enough and leave? Should I hang around and hope for him to change and be a faithful husband again? How do I handle this?
Thanks and GOD bless…
I know that there are many amazing people who read this blog. People who are passionate; people who have faced tragedies and people who have had triumphs. People who have lived through fun times and people who have lived through challenging times.
So I am calling on the wisdom of our tribe.
I am calling on the wisdom of YOU.
What should M do?
“Here’s what I want you to do next.” - Have you had a similar experience? What did you do? How did you handle it?
This blog is about the power of being authentic. So check in with your heart and if you have a story to share, then share it. If you have some wisdom to pass on, then pass it on. If you simply want to connect, then now is your moment.
that confidence guy.
Author, Speaker, Confidence Coach, Entrepreneur