Even before I finished my analysis of the data I gathered in my five-year Rich Habits Study, I began sharing with others what I considered revolutionary, life changing information.
At first, I gave free learning sessions, teaching the top ten Rich Habits of the rich and the top ten Poor Habits of the poor.
The attendees ate it up.
After about six months, some of the attendees in the first learning sessions started sharing with me some of the changes that were taking place in their lives. A few had increased their income significantly and others lost a lot of weight. There were a few who landed good jobs as a result of the volunteering/networking Rich Habit.
There were quite a few feel-good stories, which validated my research.
A few of these early attendees began harping on me to write a book about the Rich Habits and the Poor Habits. I was reluctant at first because I had never written a book before. I told them, “I’m a CPA, not a writer”. But these attendees were relentless and they had planted a seed inside my subconscious which began to take root.
So, eventually, I wrote Rich Habits, which was released in March, 2010.
Now what to do?
I had no idea how to market and promote a book. This was all very new to me and completely outside my comfort zone.
So, I did what I always did when I was trying to understand something new – I read three books on the topic. In this case, I read three books on how to promote a book. After the third book, I understood what I needed to do.
I then embarked on what can only be described as a walk through Hell, as I stumbled about trying to promote my new book. I was trying to do something I had never done, which was very frustrating. Those around me, my inner circle, were directly affected by my stress and frustration. Almost everyone in my inner circle told me to quit as it was too painful and stressful for them, watching me as I struggled.
When you write a book, you are essentially manufacturing a product. Success in any industry that sells products is measured by how many products you sell. You can have the best product in the world but if you have no idea how to sell it, no one will be interested in buying it.
My pursuit of becoming a successful author was really a lesson in learning what to do and what not to do, what I call learning the hard way – through the school of hard knocks.
I made so many mistakes. I failed so often. I was constantly filled with doubt almost on a daily basis. I felt lost at sea most of the time and cursed myself for writing that damn book. But I was passionate about getting my research out there and that kept me going.
So, I persevered. And persevered. And persevered. In the first 3 1/2 years of trying to promote my book, I sold less than 1,000 books and spent nearly $70,000 on publicists, advertising, courses, media experts, etc.
At one point, I came within a hair’s breath of quitting on my dream, due to the lack of success, despite my daily efforts. It was at this low point, in February of 2013, that success visited me for the first time – a Yahoo TV Interview. A team of four individuals showed up at my CPA office to interview me about my Rich Habits.
The interview aired in July of 2013. My Yahoo Rich Habits interview went viral. It had broken all of the records for that particular Yahoo Show, hosted by Farnoosh Torabi – over two million hits in a twenty-four hour period.
That one success event opened up the floodgates.
Dave Ramsey, famous radio host with 8 million listeners, invited me on his show just two days after the Yahoo interview aired. For thirty minutes I shared my Rich Habits with Dave and his 8 million rabid listeners.
CBS emailed me about doing a national TV interview on my Rich Habits. Other media outlets followed. Offers for lucrative, paid speaking engagements began rolling in.
It has been quite an amazing experience.
My Rich Habits books have gone on to sell hundreds of thousands of copies. And sales of my books continue to grow each month.
Entrepreneurial success, I learned, hides behind a mountain of mistakes and failures.
I believe life wants to see if you have what it takes to overcome every obstacle it puts in your way. But most of all, I believe life wants to see if you deserve success.
We are all much more than we believe ourselves to be. Inside each one of us is the capacity to be great and amazing.
You only really find out how amazing you are when your back is up against the wall and your dream feels like it’s collapsing under the weight of all of your failures and mistakes. When you are about ready to quit, that is when life throws you a life preserver. And that life preserver is almost always some unintended good thing that happens. Something completely out of the blue that you never expected and never imagined.
That’s why you must pursue you dreams and never quit on your dreams. When you persist, life eventually bends to your will. It goes from adversary to ally in an instant.