Welcome to the Unshackled Owner Podcast. Most New Year’s resolutions, most big goals, most visions and dreams, everybody gets excited about them for a minute and then they get crushed under the weight of real life. What we know is that most people who go onto to create, who live a life and end up becoming very, very famous, do so after tremendous failure.
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Winners Never Quit and Quitters Never Win With Aaron Young
Hello, everybody. This is Aaron Young, The Unshackled Owner. This is episode number eight. It’s the beginning of a new year, we’re in 2017. It’s going to be a big, big year. I bet a lot of you have been thinking about New Year’s resolutions, what this year is going to be.
Last week, I encouraged you to set some big goals and go for the gold and go big or go home. This time, today, what I want to talk about is most New Year’s resolutions, most big goals, most visions and dreams, everybody gets excited about them for a minute and then they get crushed under the weight of real life, crushed under the drudgeries of paying off your credit card debt and dealing with cold winter or just getting back into bad habits. Look at all the people that buy gym memberships and then the parking lot’s full in January and by February you can park right up by the front door. Because most people set goals, set dreams, have intentions that they’re very, very willing to let go of.
Listen, there’s nothing wrong with turning your back on a bad idea or walking away from a failed idea. You need to know how to fail fast. Most of us never give our ideas, our dreams the time, the gestation period to grow into something. As a matter of fact, there’s a very famous story in the book Think and Grow Rich that talks about a minor who goes up to Alaska and he’s going to go mine for gold. He comes up there, he’s got a bunch of money. He’s taking all of his friends and family money and he buys the best equipment. He gets a great place and he goes to work. He starts to mine and go down into the earth and he hits gold. He’s bringing gold up by the bucketfuls.
He gets into dirt and no matter how much more he drills and mines, he cannot find any more gold. He walks away from the mine dejected, sells the equipment to a junkman for scrap and leaves and goes back to the east coast. The junkman goes to an engineer and says, “Hey, this mine was making money, was pulling gold out and then they hit dirt.” The engineer said, “Gold is in a vein. Go back to wherever the gold was and just turn your drills 90 degrees and you’ll probably hit gold.” Within three feet of starting to drill again, the mine started to produce gold again and became an incredibly wealthy vein of gold. They made millions and millions of dollars. All because the person quit when he was only three feet from gold. That’s a story Napoleon Hill tells.
There’s something to know, there’s two stories here. One is the original guy that goes down there, he quits when he runs into an obstacle. He can’t find any more gold so he says, “Okay.” Rather than learning more, rather than getting some education, rather than going and asking an expert or getting a mentor or a coach, he quits and he leaves dejected. He quit three feet from gold. That’s the story.
Let me tell you the rest of the story. The same guy goes back to the east coast, he starts another business in the insurance industry and becomes a multi, multi-millionaire in his next venture because he wasn’t a quitter, he quit doing something that he thought was failed but then he went on to do something else and try again, try again and try again.
What we know is that most people who go onto to create, who live a life and end up becoming very, very famous, do so after tremendous failure. One example would be Abraham Lincoln. Abraham Lincoln, if you’ve ever read his history, he was in the military in his young life, he went into the military as a captain and left as a private because he was such a failed, failed officer. They demoted him from captain all the way down to private. He lost most of his elections. He had a whole bunch of business failures. He finally was elected to be president after all kinds of losses.
Oprah Winfrey was told that she was unfit for TV. Walt Disney was fired by an editor of a newspaper he was writing for and doing cartoon work for because they said he lacked imagination. This was Walt Disney lacked imagination. Those stories just go and on and on and on. Charles Darwin was too dreamy. Bill gates, did you know that before Bill Gates and Paul Allen started Microsoft … Check this name out. They had a business called Traf-O-Data. That’s an old school name, isn’t it? It was a terrible, terrible failure but they kept working and they came up with DOS and they launched Microsoft and then Windows eventually. Huge. On and on and on.
Macy’s, The Miracle on 34th Street and the Macy’s Day parade. All the Macy’s department stores and how Macy’s bought up all kinds of other department stores. He had seven failed companies before he opened the Macy’s stores. It goes on and on and on. Listen guys, every one of them kept going forward. Ford had seven failed businesses before Ford Motor Company, seven. The point is, he tried and he tried and he tried and he tried and he tried and he tried, was that seven? Then he got to a home run.
I just want you to remember, as you’re going into January and you’ve set these big goals and these big intentions, you’re excited, I want you to remember that a huge part of success in your business is being tenacious. Having tenacity, having that ability to hold on, to keep going, to keep going even when it seems like you’re beat. Boy, I just have a million visuals that are flashing through my mind right now as I talk to you.
Right now, in the United States, arguably the biggest pop music sensation, and I say arguably because it could be Beyoncé or it could be Taylor Swift. I’m going to say Taylor Swift because everything I’m seeing shows that she’s winning the battle and she’s so young and so involved in so many things. She has a great quote, she said, “Fearless …” A lot of us are fearful in our businesses, a lot of us stop out of fear. Here’s what this very talented, multi gazillionaire, Taylor Swift said, “Fearless is getting back up and fighting for what you want over and over again, even though every time you’ve tried before, you’ve lost.” Fearless is getting up and fighting for what you want over and over again, even though every time you tried before, you lost.
Because here’s what somebody in popular in music knows or anything entertainment, you got to go and go and you got to play all the crummy little gigs and you’ve got to take all the crummy little backup singer things and all the bit parts in the movies and all the crummy place because you just have to keep working. If you try and you try and try, boom, after 20 years, you’re an overnight success.
Theodore Roosevelt, I love this. “Courage is not having the strength to go on. It’s going on when you don’t have the strength.” Let me tell you, as entrepreneurs, you’re going to feel that way a lot. How many of you with the sound of my voice right now, some days you just go, “What the heck am I doing? What in the world am I doing? Who was I to plan this big goal? Who did I think I was when I set out this gigantic intention, when I said I was going to make a million dollars on this product? Who did I think I was when I said I was going to open up 100 locations? Who did I think I was when I thought I could franchise this?”
One of my friends that’s in my men’s group, I’m going to do a whole lesson on this later, he had this idea, this game he made up in college. All of his college buddies who loved to play in the game said, “Oh my gosh, you really got to sell this. This is a cool business or whatever.” He thought, “Who am I to think that my silly little invention that I did just to have fun with my buddies and my girlfriends and stuff, just something to do because we didn’t have any money? Who am I to think that that was a business worthy idea? That there was any value at all?” You know what the game was called? It was called Pictionary.
A buddy of mine invented Pictionary. He makes millions every year actually from it. He’ll never have to work again in his life all because somebody said this was cool. Even though he doubted it, he tried anyway. He went out and he worked and he worked and he worked and he finally found a great partner who would … Anyway, I don’t want to tell his whole story. The point is, a lot of times, we look at our thing and we say, “That’s not that big of a deal. Who do I think I am?”
You know what, it’s really all about sticking with it. They say that genius … Actually, they don’t say, Albert Einstein said, “Genius is 1% talent, 99% hard work.” If you want to be looked at as a genius, if you want to be a thought leader, if you want to be the one in your industry that everybody says, “That’s the go to person,” I don’t care if you’re the dentist in your town that people love to go to or if you’re the national media host, you’re the writing that everybody wants writing for them or if you’re the inventor who gets everything on the shelves of the big stores, whatever it is, 1% talent, 99% hard work.
It doesn’t matter how gifted you are, it’s the work and it’s working even when you think you’re licked. It’s going even though you think, “I don’t know, what the heck am I doing?” But you keep trying. Sometimes you’re going to be the only one who sees the value in what you’re doing but you keep going because you know … I want you to think about this, I want you to think about if you ask yourselves a question, is this thing that I’m offering something that I would buy? Do I think this is going to help somebody else in their life? Is this going to be something that’s going to make a difference to somebody else in their life? Is this something I can believe in? Is this something they can believe in? Is it something that’s going to make difference for them?
If the answer is yes, then I’m going to keep doing it. I’m going to keep doing it because there is a market for something that you know you would love, you know you would buy, you know it will change those people’s lives for the better, you know they would buy it. You just have to get it in front of them.
Most really gigantic, epic, powerful things, Steve Jobs was known for this, is people didn’t necessarily know what they wanted. Sometimes, you have to have the big vision. Elvis Presley, not even really him, but Sam Philips who ran Sun Records, Sam Philips knew that there’s a whole white market for music that sounded black but they couldn’t sell black artist to white buyers in those days, in the 50s, so they had to find a white guy who could sing black, who could give the soul of a black person. He knew there was a market for it and the market didn’t exist right then. You know what they did? They found Elvis Presley and they said, “Oh, here’s our guy.”
Elvis went from driving a truck for electric company delivering wire and electrical switches. Within months, within days of That’s All Right Little Mama coming out back in 1954, within days, he was a regional success. Within a year and a half, he was making movies. He still is the number one seller of records today. Elvis Presley. Why? Because somebody saw that there was a need and they were going to fill that need even though there was no market, it was going to go against the social norms, they were going to go against what people thought was right. Sam Philips had a vision and Elvis Presley became the King of Rock and Roll because somebody saw a need and they knew they could fill it with this young kid from Tupelo, Mississippi.
Scott Fitzgerald said, “Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat.” In other words, you may have lost the battle, but you have not lost the war. If you believe enough in who you are, if you believe enough in what you’re doing, you’ll stick with it, stick with it, stick with it. Have I beaten this horse to death? Maybe so. But all I know is that people come up to me all the time wringing their hands, talking about how, “I tried and I failed. I fell down and I skinned my knee. I just don’t want to skin my other knee so I’m afraid to try again. I’m afraid to try again.”
Remember what Edison said? I know I’m just doing all kinds of quotes. All these things are coming to mind. When somebody asked Edison, “What does it feel like to fail 10,000 times looking for the filament for the incandescent light bulb?” He said, “I didn’t fail. I never failed. I found 10,000 things that didn’t work.” He was successful. He identified what didn’t work, he found tungsten. They started making the filament and it changed the whole world. Changed the whole world because he didn’t give up. After the second failure, the tenth failure, the thousandth failure, the 9000th failure, the 9999th failure, he kept going until he found something that would work.
Genius is 1% talent, 99% hard work. Guys, don’t just set big goals, stick with it. Walk into the dark, make imperfect steps towards your goal. If you talk about it in a logical way, if you have a plan, if your plan is organized. People come up to you and say, “I want to be a public speaker.” I say, “Have you written a talk yet?” “No, I haven’t. Nobody’s invited me to speak.” I say, “Until you’ve written a talk, no one will ever ask you to speak.”
Have a plan but then take action. Your ideas, as John Maxwell says, need both wings and landing gear. You want to have a soaring idea but you have to have a way to land that and actually start doing something with it. That’d be actually a really good podcast to do. That will come up in the future. I’m going to do one all about wings and landing gear.
Guys, go out. Have a great January, have a great 2017. Have big ideas, dream big and then have the courage to stick with it. Have the courage to stick with it. I’m going to give you one more quote. “Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, ‘I’ll try again tomorrow.'” When you’re feeling down, when you’re feeling beat, when you’re feeling alone, when you feel like you’re in a vacuum and nobody understands your idea, nobody sees your vision. Everybody’s trying to say, “Are you really sure? Is that really what you should do?” If you know it’s true, remember, entrepreneurs see the world differently than 99% of the other people.
Sometimes your courage isn’t going to be a big, bold, powerful war hero kind of thing. It’s just the courage to listen to that little voice in your head that says, “You know what, I’ll try again tomorrow. Tomorrow’s going to be the day.” I believe in you, guys. I believe in you, I believe in your ideas. To be an unshackled owner means doing things that the average person won’t do. You have to learn the steps and then you have to have the courage to work through those steps. If you’ll do that work upfront, if you’ll take the big chances, you’ll organize yourself, prepare everything, you will end up with a business that is more powerful than just you. It’s a business that transcends you, it’s a business that works harder than you have to work for it.
I’m telling you, that is the vision that you want to get to. That’s the thing that you want to learn to do. I’m glad you’re here. I hope this inspired you. I want you to listen and seek out your own quotes, find the voice that speaks to you. Post it up on your wall so that on those hard days, you can go, “No, I’m not the only one who’s ever felt like this.” Elvis Presley and F. Scott Fitzgerald and Albert Einstein and Walt Disney and Thomas Edison and Henry Ford all went down the same road. This is what the path looks like on the way to my success. That’s the attitude that will make you into an unshackled owner.
I’ll look for you next time. Tell your friends, subscribe to the podcast, share it with people, let them know that this is out there. Let’s get as many people as we can to be inspired, to be motivated, to know they’re not alone. Let’s setup 10,000 new companies this year and let’s make them all successful. That’s my big goal for the year. Join me. I’ll be here to help you every week on The Unshackled Owner podcast.