On June 8th and 9th I had the privilege of attending a two day Mastermind at the New Canaan Field Club led by Freedym founder Ryan Lee.
Having a small intimate group of successful entrepreneurs to collectively brainstorm for two full days is invaluable. First, the importance of getting ‘away’ from your business and daily grind for a couple days is invaluable.
Honestly, I had too many breakthroughs to list everything but I put together a top 7 lessons list.
Many of the insights came from not only my own challenges but also listening and participating in solving the challenges of every group member.
So without further ado:
1)DON’T BE MARRIED TO YOUR IDEA!
It’s very easy to become emotionally attached to our ideas and projects but often it’s necessary to just MOVE ON.
Drop things and let go of the past. Learn from it and use all those lessons going forward but don’t dwell on lost time or money.
It’s in the past and you can’t change the past. Use it all as a lesson and don’t make the same mistakes again.
2) Just Do It Better
This was a big one for me.
Over the past few years, I had grown extremely cynical of the entire Internet Marketing space.
Despite my own goals and dreams, I thought about NOT PLAYING and throwing in the towel many times simply because I found so much of the industry distasteful.
It did not help my view when two of our MM members shared how they were scammed into some very expensive programs that added ZERO value.
These were programs of two gurus I had thought were the real deal. One is even a New York Times bestselling author with all the big credentials and perfect image on the outside.
But I can’t change what others in the market do.
I can’t protect everyone from the false promises and snake oil salesman.
What I can do is be a source of light for the people I serve. It is my responsibility to market my products and services.
Dwelling on the negative part of an industry, which claims thousands of lives who fall for the Success BS of quick riches and fame, is a difficult place to operate from.
It drains my energy.
But it’s my responsibility to reach people and serve them better.
3) Don’t Force IT
Several of our members were in their late twenties and early thirties.
Like many of us, they want it NOW.
It’s human nature and we also live in times of instant gratification more so than any time since I have been alive.
But the truth is there are no hacks and shortcuts.
One member in particular had so many talents I lost track: he has been an attorney, a sports agent, a college baseball player and a bunch of other things. Yet, he was stuck on what he really wants to do now.
We all poked and prodded him for two straight days so he can have that one big aha moment. It never came.
But here is the lesson: it won’t always come in one brilliant moment.
In fact, it rarely does.
The journey, the process itself is the reward. What we learn, how we impact others, how we grow and how we evolve is the real prize on the journey.
4) Don’t Be Fooled
Simply put, most of what we see on Facebook and the Internet is questionable, it’s hype, and it’s bogus.
Social media is a powerful tool in so many ways. It is also a wasteland.
Do your due diligence and question everything you see read or hear on the Internet.
Learn to use social media as a tool not a drug that distracts you from what is really important in life.
Most importantly, develop real relationships and find the people you trust.
Remember, posting is never as good as talking and forming a relationship is far better than getting a ‘like’.
5) Don’t Disvalue Yourself
About four years ago, I made a decision that I wanted to try some new things. I had one of the most successful tennis academies for over 15 years but I was bored and wanted to learn some new skills outside of the tennis business that would not require me to be on the courts as much.
It did not take long before I started looking at everyone else on line and completely disvaluing myself. I became so obsessed with ‘what was missing’ instead of taking stock every day in ‘what I have’ and ‘’how far I have come’.
I started having nightmares of waking up and being 60 years old and still trying to fix Mrs. Cohen’s backhand while the rest of the world was sitting on the beach with their laptops sipping margaritas.
Ok, maybe that is a slight exaggeration but it’s very easy to start focusing all your attention on ‘where you are going’ instead of enjoying and appreciating ‘where you are’.
It’s a trap that will rob you of the one thing that matters most: joy, happiness and laughter
6) Don’t let disappointment define you
I can’t take credit for these five words. A brilliant mentor of mine, Mitch Axelrod, shared these words with me at a time when I needed it most. The words came from his brother and there is a profound story behind it.
I remember these words often. Why? Because growing a business is difficult. Life can be extremely difficult and challenging at times. It’s easy to get overwhelmed.
You will get frustrated and disappointed. You will get irritable.
You will get angry.
You will get stuck at times.
If you try anything different and new you are bound to fall and stumble. Even when you are experienced at something, life will throw you all kinds of curveballs and challenges.
But as I sat for two days with this amazing group of entrepreneurs I was reminded over and over that today is a new day and a chance to build something better this time.
7) List of business wisdom
And last but not least, here is a list of quick nuggets of business wisdom directly from my hand written notes over the two days:
- Sell them what they want, give them what they need.
- Go deep not wide.
- Shift your focus from ‘how much can I make’ to ‘how many people can I help’.
- Don’t try and do everything yourself, know when to bring in experts.
- Know your market better than you know your products.
- Don’t give unsolicited advice.
- If you seek advice from a trusted source, listen to the truth even if it’s not pleasant or what you want to hear. Things we disagree with can often be the best advice and the truth. It may save you years of unnecessary angst.
- Know thyself.
- Don’t create a business that ‘owns you’.
- Find what you enjoy doing most in your business and do more of it.
- It’s not too late. Yes, it’s crowded and more competitive than ever but 5 years from now people will be saying I wish I got into the game back in 2017.
- Be strategic and create a plan to design a business around your lifestyle.
- People over profits.
- Freedom above power and fame.
- Don’t wait, there will never be the ‘PERFECT’ time.
- Adapt or you will be left behind.
For me, this mastermind was a game changing experience. I strongly recommend if you want to break through the BS, you attend one of Ryan’s masterminds.
July 13 & 14th, 2017
New Canaan, CT (spend two days in a small group at my house as we mastermind by my pool!)