Are you an amateur or a professional?
It’s really exciting because it’s 2016 and I was looking today and it’s the 11th. I don’t know about you guys, but I took a little break towards the end of the year. I scheduled it for the end of the year, first of the year just because we hit a lot of goals and number two, my daughter was born and I wanted to take some family time. That was really important to me and it was a goal that I had set int 2015 was to take 2 weeks off at the end of the year. It ended up being the last week of the year and the first week.
Sometimes getting back in the groove to get…I was talking to another top Coach this morning briefly about is it hard to get back in the groove after you’ve had a successful year? You’ve had time to celebrate and it’s about setting that next goal or setting those next goals and what does that become? That’s a process that I’m in right now because I haven’t sat down and identified the things, specifically, that I want to achieve in 2016.
So until you do that, you’re kind of spinning your wheels and you’re sitting here with your to-do list and you’re looking at your screen and you’re like, “I know that I’m supposed to be working right now, but I’m not exactly sure what I’m supposed to be doing.”
What makes a professional?
So today we’re talking about amateurs and professionals and so many people jump into a home business or the online space and they don’t treat it like a profession from the very beginning. They think, “Oh, this is a part-time thing. I don’t really know what I’m doing just yet. I’m in my learning phase.” All those parts are important. The learning phase is important. Learning and doing immediately and starting to incorporate the things that you’re learning, but amateur vs. professional really comes down to two different things.
It is mindset and habits.
So an amateur vs a professional. So you might think, “I’m going to become a professional when I start making ‘x’ amount of money in my online business. I’ll consider myself a professional when I reach a certain rank or level of recognition,” and that’s such an easy trap to fall into. I’ve had mentors that have taught me the “Act as if…” model.
Act as if and so you’re like, “Okay, I want to run a business that makes me $50,000 a year or six-figures or seven-figures a year,” and so you have to start thinking, “If I had that level of a business right now, what activities…what would be different about my life in the way that I’m running things right this minute?”
Number one, let’s start with your mindset. Are there things right now that are negotiable that get done if there’s time? They get done when it’s convenient. Somewhere you have to decide, “Hey, there are some things right now that are non-negotiable. I am a professional. I am looking to build this thing even if it’s not established yet, I know where I’m going and why I’m going there.”
You’ve already heard mine. The fact that somebody else could dictate my schedule just the thought of it makes me want to punch a wall and it pisses me off. Why? Because so much of my life was lived exactly that way. Commuting an hour and back. Jobs where I was working 8, 10, 12 hours a day. Doing a good job and not being compensated for being the hardest worker at any of my jobs. I wasn’t paid any more. I wasn’t granted more freedom or more vacation time. I was just patted on the butt and told attaboy. “Jimmy, love your attitude.”
I got to a point where I got fed up with that and so we don’t think of anger and getting pissed off as a noble thing to push us forward in our business and I’ll be real honest with you, that was the mindset shift for me. My enough is enough moment both with my physical transformation and in my business. Losing 100lbs and creating a seven figure business, it was really getting pissed off is what sparked me to move and it was just being an enough is enough moment.
What’s your enough is enough moment?
You gotta have that enough is enough moment, that draw a line in the sand moment, where you go, “Okay, I’m stepping over this line and I’m not tuning back,” and I’m going to tell you, right now you may be fist pumping on the other side of this in your office or in your car or wherever you’re watching this, but it’s sexy and it’s easy to do at an event or when you hear somebody like me speak. Where it’s not easy anymore is when I shut this camera off and nobody’s in your office rooting you on and the kid’s screaming and you have laundry to do or your boss is yelling at you or you’re super tired or you just got that flat tire or the furnace went out, that’s the time when your mindset has to continue to push through because life is going to throw some stuff at you.
One of my favorite books that I think that every entrepreneur should read is The War of Art by Steven Pressfield and it talks exactly about being a professional. In fact, I’m reading the follow up book to that called Turning Pro and this is probably why I’m so passionate about this is that this is what’s been in my brain lately. How a professional shows up every day, good and bad.
This morning, my workout did not feel like doing that workout. I got in there and I came this close to just shutting it down and saying that i’m going to live to fight another day, and I was like, “No, I’m in here and already going. You better give it your best.”
It’s the same thing when I sit down at my desk to either work with my team or work with the people that I mentor or to create content, free content like this for you. I’m starting to explore on Snapchat for those of you who are following me on Snapchat. I continue to create things. Like my video series 5 Days of Fire, if you go to 5DaysFire.com, it’s a free video series. Why? Because I just want to continue to create content. I want to add value to an area that I think needs value added to it and that’s helping people create a life of freedom.
There is no reason…one of my favorite Gary Vaynerchuk quotes and it comes from one of his very first speeches is “Stop doing shit you hate,” and that’s exactly what he says. In this day an age, I don’t even know how long ago that speech was, there really isn’t.
Now, can you go leave your job right now and just turn on the money faucet for your online business? No, but you can do things now in the midst of your 40, 50, 60 hour work week, your screaming kids, your spouse that’s not supportive right now, there are things that you can do to create a life where you have…for me, I wanted to create a life and a business that allowed me to pursue my passion in the arts. In fact, as I’m writing my goals out for this year, it’s been about five years since I’ve been on stage.
For those of you that doing know me, my background is in musical theatre and what were my pain points as an artist, as a musical theatre artist, specifically my time in New York City? Well, you gotta have money to pay the bills, but you have to be pretty flexible to make it to auditions and you need to take the voice lessons to be a better singer and you need acting lessons to continue to improve those skills and your agent may call with less than a day’s notice and go, “You have an audition tomorrow,” but you have that temp job or your waiting tables and you can’t get that shift covered.
I’m telling you my pain points as an actor. For you and your life, you probably have different pain points than me because I don’t know that everybody on this thing is a budding actor or actress or musician or whatever, but I’m just telling you what I know as the life of an artist. My passion in 2016 is to reach out to more artists because we have so many on our team that are realizing, “I can run this online business not to not be an artist, not to not be an actor, that will help me pursue the things that I love.”
Finding your passion
So, right now, as you’re figuring out, “Why is it that I want to jump into some kind of online business or online space? Well, because I can set things up that help me to earn money around the clock so I can free myself up to do the things that I love.”
Maybe your thing is travel, maybe you’d love to travel more. Maybe you would like to create a charity. You need to know what that is so when we talk about habits of an amateur versus a professional, that’s the point of this talk, those two things that you have to shift is your mindset and your habits.
That first thing, mindset, so if I know why I’m showing up everyday on days that suck, on the days that I’m not motivated, and I said this before that motivation is really overrated. If you’re only going to act when you’re motivated, then you’re not going to get much done. Those motivated days are great, they’re so awesome, but a lot of times, you’re not going to be motivated.
In fact, another favorite book of mine that I have all my team get the audiobook of is the Entrepreneur Rollercoaster by Darren Hardy and so many books try to pump you up, right? The Magic of Thinking Big and all of these are great books and why you can do it, but this book says that the entrepreneurial lifestyle is going to suck 95% of the time and here’s all the things that you have to be willing to fight through in order to make it happen. I love that and that’s what I love about that book because he doesn’t sugarcoat it and he says, “These are the things you’re going to fight against, but here’s why it’s worth it. Here’s how you can still do it.”
I will tell you that 95% of the time the things that I do, I don’t have a boss telling me to do it, I have to make myself do it. A lot of them aren’t fun. They’re not sexy. But the 5% when it’s good, the 5% when I’m working with someone new that has that breakthrough, that 5% where we hit a new milestone as a business, that 5% the times where I’ve been able to fund my parents mission trips to Nigeria or to send them to do something cool because of what we’ve built with the business. The fact that Kelly’s parents are here visiting us and I’ve been able to be here 95% of the time to enjoy time with them, with my brand new baby daughter, with my son.
That kind of stuff when I get to just sit there around my family and it’s Monday at 9:15am here in Dallas and I’m not running off to a job with some boss that I hate in some cubicle and I would rather stab myself in the eye with this pen than do something like that. So it’s those moments where I go, “This was worth it.”
I had to change into the person I wanted to become.
All my actor friends when I started this business rolled their eyes at me or got tired of fitness posts or, “Jimmy, if I hear one more thing about your shake or your business or whatever…” and did I lose some friendships? I will say that don’t think that I lost friendships, but I postponed many friendships because many of those friends that rolled their eyes or distanced themselves from me when I got started now are coming back around.
They’re not always getting involved in my business and that’s fine. What I do isn’t for everybody, but they’re at least saying, “It’s admirable. Jimmy, you’ve stuck with this while a lot of people were whispering or going ‘Gah, Jimmy’s changed,’ or this or that,” yes! I’m trying not to cuss too much.
Hell yes I changed! Because who I was and where I was as broke and miserable and not confident and allowing other people to dictate what my worth was in life. Hell yeah! To do the things I wanted to do I had to change into the person I wanted to become.
That takes us back to mindset and habits. The difference between the amateur and the professional is your mindset and then your habits.
What are those things you do? Do have non-negotiables in your life that you’re improving on?
Work on your mindset every single day
For me, I work harder on my mindset than I do anything else every day. I get up, the first thing that I do when I get up in the morning, and I get up super early, is I put something on my audio on my phone or in my ear that is adjusting my mindset to something positive.
I’m not flipping on the news, God knows that I’m not jumping on Facebook first thing in the morning, I’m not jumping into my email, I am protecting my brain until I have it primed. It’s almost like before you jump into a workout. If you jump straight into power jumps at five in the morning without warming up, you’re going to pull something and you’re going to hurt yourself.
Why wouldn’t I do that same for my mindset? Why wouldn’t I go through a warmup that’s going to get my mind prepped for the bullshit that I’m going to hit every day?
There’s going to be some negativity that’s going to come at me every day, there’s going to be some catastrophe with either me, there’s going to be some drama with my team, I’m going to have to help somebody solve a problem, I’m going to have…believe it or not, I have people on my own team, they get mad at me! They blame me for their lack of success or that I didn’t do this well enough or I didn’t give them this attention or I didn’t do that.
It happens! If I hadn’t prepped my brain and my mindset, then they’re probably going to get a very negative reaction from me and I’m probably going to blow up and say some stuff I don’t mean to say and so I need to be able to go and say, “Okay. Why are they feeling this way? Is there justification?” I had a text chit chat back and forth with a coach of mine yesterday and she let me know that she was kind of frustrated with some lack of access that we had. And at first I was like really offended and then, “You know, she’s kind of right,” and I had to know where to fall on my sword.
Never stop learning
That happened because of working on my mindset with things like the audio that I talked about or the books that I’ve referenced here. And this is coming from a guy that wasn’t a super student. I was a three time college dropout, again…mindset and habits. So my professional habits which are not my nature is the fact that I study this stuff.
It doesn’t come naturally to me.
I don’t like to sit and read very often.
I still listen to a lot of audios. I’ll pop things on YouTube that work on my mindset when I go to an events, but I wouldn’t say inherently…I’ve become an insatiable student. I love learning now, but it wasn’t where I was when I started this thing. In fact, when anybody recommended me shifting my mindset or my attitude or that I needed to personally grow in order to be better at something, I fought it. I fought it really hard because I didn’t…they need to change, they need to do that, and it’s funny because in my life, I moved multiple times.
Take responsibility for your actions
Not only dropping out of college, but I would get to a spot where there was the same drama, the same…I just didn’t like my circumstances, relationships were going bad, and I was like, “You know what? I’m just going to clean slate,” and I would literally pick up and move. I went from here to Oklahoma, I went from Oklahoma to Florida, from Florida back to Dallas to LA, Dallas, New York, LA, New York, Dallas, and that used to be my coping mechanism. I’d say, “Well, screw it. I’m going to go reinvent myself so I’m going to go fresh start, new people, start all over,” and you know what happens just a few months in? All the same stuff that I struggled with at the previous stop found me again.
Well, what was the common denominator in all that? The person in the mirror, but it’s real easy to point at other people.
“Oh, it’s them! I’m not succeeding because my husband doesn’t support me. I’m not succeeding because they’re fair at the job. I don’t make more money because this, this, and this,” and dude, I was the King of Blame Other People, but I realized that at the end of the day, your success or failure rate starts and ends with the person in the mirror.
Somebody else has a harder situation than you do and has found ways to be successful. There are people that have less advantages than you have, less money, busier schedule, worse home life, more abuse of whatever. Whatever your situation is, there’s always somebody else in a worse situation that’s already made it work. You have just decided that your excuse is the golden excuse and I’m telling you, there’s no golden excuse. It comes down to mindset and habits.
Be your best in the weight room and it’ll make you the best in the board room.
What are other habits that I had to do? Personally, another thing that I really enjoy, and in 2016 that I’ve become very passionate about…yes, I’m all about building businesses and building something that creates a life of freedom, but a pet peeve of mine is when I see…’hustle’ has become a very sexy word in the entrepreneurial space like, “Oh, he’s hustling or grinding or whatever,” but these people that allow their health to go to shit because of the ‘hustle’ or the ‘grind’ or the ‘game’ I think is the hugest cop out because I think that you have to take care of yourself physically if you’re going to be…you know, I say, “Be your best in the weight room and it’ll make you the best in the board room.”
Whatever your ‘board room’ happens to be. If you board room happens to be…like I consider this video to be a business meeting with you right now. I am better right now, I am better for you because I took care of myself this morning.
I got up, I worked on my mindset, I busted my ass in my workouts for a little over an hour, I came home, I spent time with my family, and then I got on here to deliver to you. Now, if I don’t do all that stuff to take care of me early, I’m no good for you.
It’s like in the airplane if they say that you’re going down and the masks fall, you have to take care of your mask first and then put it on the other person.
Take a heaping helping of self awareness
So many people want to point to other people and say, “Well, you didn’t do this and you need to do that. You need to take care of your own damn self before I…” So if I come on here and start giving you tips on amateur vs professional mindset vs mindset and actions, but I haven’t done those things, even if I tell you exactly the right things, I could pass along information that is valuable and legit without doing it, but I really think that audiences are smarter and smarter.
You guys watch me on social media, you guys have an idea of what I do and how I run my life, and so if I’m not doing what I’m telling you to do then I lose all credibility. It’s the same thing with the people that I mentor in business training, if I don’t…and there are so many business trainers that do this, that get to a level where they feel like they don’t have to do what they tell the people that they mentor to do anymore.
They just go into management mode and it just doesn’t work for me because I feel like I lose credibility if I don’t do the things that I ask of you or my team. The same thing physically if I’m saying that you need to take care of your body and your health first, and I don’t mean that you have to be 6% body fat or you have to have abs to your chin. Some of you have that, God bless you, I don’t. I’m not ripped 365, but I’m very conscious about my nutrition and my fitness 365 days a year.
You haven’t watched me go through crazy ebbs and flows with my weight in the past 8 to 9 years that a lot of you have been following me or watching me online. That’s because I feel like the integrity of what I preach tells me to take care of my body and my mind and my business and all of those things allow me to take care of my family and have that time as well.
Being a professional starts and ends with you
Really guys, at the end of the day, amateur vs. professional has nothing to do with how much you’re making, how big your business is, it has nothing to do with if you’re doing this part-time or full-time. I know people that have walked away from jobs that say that they’re doing things full time, but they’re still not acting like a professional. They’re still in amateur status. I know people that their business is just up and running, but they’ve already made that shift to a professional mindset.
Professional vs. amateur all comes down to your mindset and your habits. What are your habits? Do you have non-negotiables? Do you know the hours that you’re working your business?
I could tell you every day. I know when my mental personal development is happening, I know when my learning time is, I know when my workouts are, and I know when I’m working my business. I know it. It’s not like, “Well, I don’t know. I’m going to get up on a Tuesday and I’ll just fiddle-fart around and if it gets done it gets done.”
And I’m constantly tweaking that. In fact, I have my to-do list right here and I was just doing a check in of, “What are some daily non-negotiables that I can get better at?” For me, it’s more high touch points with my customers in the form of video emails. It’s more high touch points with the people that I mentor and my business trainings on my team. It’s doing more stuff like this. Like I said, doing trainings for things…like right now, how does this move my business forward? I don’t know, I’m adding value and I feel like it will come back around. The more I add value into the marketplace, the more it’s served me and my family well.
Learning new ways to serve. I have a new webinar series that’s going to be coming up soon. I’m hosting an event for men in May for those of you that have guys that want to know more about you can go to TrainingCampEvent.com, that’s TrainingCampEvent.com. We have Gary Vaynerchuk and Bo Eason and Scott Mann coming in to do business training for men entrepreneurs here in Dallas.
I know that people had to push me to get me to where I am today.
So it’s just continuing to add value and continuing to help people act like professionals. That’s just a big passion of mine and I have a lot of my team on here that I see them popping on and you can ask them, I can be the nicest guy in the world, but I can be a SOB when it comes to are you doing the things that you need to do every day. Do you know when you’re doing them? Have you reverse engineered them?
Why am I so hard on them? Because it’s the stuff that I’ve struggled with.
I know that people had to push me to get me to where I am today. I am so thankful for those people. I have Chalene Johnson over my shoulder here and she, as a business coach, has pushed me and pushed me and pushed me. We’ve had fights and I love her for it.
My best music teachers, voice teachers, acting coaches, and business coaches were people that pushed me out of my comfort zone and were willing to piss me off to get the best out of me. That’s a shift that I’ve made in the past year and a half for the people that I’ve worked with. I love them all dearly. They don’t always love me and that’s okay as long as they know that I have their best interest in mind.
Guys, be a professional today. I would love that if you found value in this video, please share it on Facebook today or comment in the comments to let me know what you’re doing…this is what I would love, here’s my request. In the comments, let me know today what are you going to shift? What are you going to attack as a professional today that you have been doing as an amateur in the past?
My name is Coach Jimmy and I really appreciate you taking the time to hang out with me. We’ll talk real soon. Take care.