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Old January 17th, 2011, 11:21 PM   #1
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Self Help, Business Coaches and Improving Your Life and Work

I just read an awesome book called "The 10 Distinctions Between Millionaires and the Middle Class" Even thou it has nothing to do with my specific field it has opened my eyes about how I think about business, life and especially my money or financial freedom.

After reading it I'm hungry for more.

One of the major points it made was to spend more on books, live speakers, audio tapes and business coaches.

I think I spent about $50 last year on a book and some other stuff.

This year I'm budgeting $2000+ and want to know how you would spend that money.

What are some great books that you would recommend to add to my collection?

What speakers or shows would you attend?

Where have your dollars/pounds gone to improve your life, business or financial freedom?

Your ideas are greatly appreciated!

Here is one quote I liked from the book: "Big people talk about ideas, average people talk about things, and small people talk about other people."
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Old January 18th, 2011, 01:05 AM   #2
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Kelly, IMHO, I don't think it's how many dollars you spend in your quest, as much as it how much time you invest in yourself and in it.

I can't speak about this business as I am a newcomer, but in my day job I have watched that industry for 42 years now. I have seen that "environment" change over and over and over so many times I couldn't count them all if I wanted to. But today, as in my first day on the job, the basics are still the same. It takes a willing seller and willing buyer and an agreed upon price to culminate in a successful transaction.

The other thing that hasn't changed in all that time, when you find success in something, be it product, process or whatever.... you repeat it, repeat it, and repeat it.

The reason I bring these up, there isn't that much in the basics of "business" that is really new.

I personally would rather invest more in something durable than a "live presentation" as the durable reference you can go back to time and again. The "live presentation" is practiced to bring a certain "success" for the presenter. Whether that is to motivate you, or sell you something, once it is over the retention of what you experienced begins to fade. Those "general" presentations are going to be filled with lots of "hot buttons" as everyone there responds to different things.

I will be the first to admit, I often need a slap back to reality. My latest was getting caught up in "branding" until I listened to a podcast on Startupnation.com that debunked the entire theory. And in all these years, time after time I have broken some of the basic business rules, hoping to prove those old ideas wrong. I guess there's a reason they are called "rules". :-)

One thing I FINALLY learned was stopping before making a purchase and asking myself "will this make me money NOW?" "Will this allow me to do something I can't and need to do NOW?" "If not NOW....then WHEN?" The last question is "If it isn't NOW, can I buy it when it WILL make me money, or is there some solid reason why I should buy it NOW instead of THEN?"

If you are looking at aspects outside of perfecting your filming, I would say Time Management is good, Financial Management both business and personal is good, Sales Presentation is always good and Motivation is good too. I am sure there are people selling "tweaks" of all of those for filming, but the basics of each one is still universal.

Once you are jacked up and informed, then go back to Step #1 and build your new business plan. Startupnation.com also suggests something I believe they call a "Life Plan" to go hand in hand with a business plan. I would highly recommend their site as they offer a ton of resources without asking for a credit card to be able to ingest them.
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Old January 18th, 2011, 11:48 AM   #3
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Hi Kelly, I don't invest dollar wise on those kinds of things but I do strive for self improvement in business, personal life. I found You Tube to be an infinite source of self help and inspiring stories. I enjoy watching business titans and their philosophy in life. I particularly like Li Ka Shing, the richest man in Asia, a rags to riches story, his life story is in You Tube. He vowed to be so strong (emotionally) that nothing could break him or prevent him from reaching his goals. I think that is one common traits among the billionaires, if they set their sight on something they will find away. Somehow we can all apply that to our life.

My 2 cents.
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Old January 18th, 2011, 12:29 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Kelly Langerak View Post
One of the major points it made was to spend more on books, live speakers, audio tapes and business coaches.
Shocking. What a remarkable coincidence that the guy who says this makes money off of all those things.

When I made my living as a marketing research consultant, the obvious key to success was to spend much more on marketing research consultants.

DVInfo is a much better deal.
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Old January 18th, 2011, 12:49 PM   #5
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Some books I found value in reading :

How to win friends and influence people - Dale Carnegie
Think & Grow Rich - Napoleon Hill
The Power of Positive Thinking - Norman Vincent Peale
The secret (as over hyped as it is)
The go-getter
The magic of thinking big
The greatest salesmen in the world by Og Mandino

A few of these are foundational books in "self help". When I was in my previous career in sales, these were required reading to learn how to deal with others, overcome objections tactfully, and overall learn to be a better person.

If you read only 2 books, I'd say read How to win friends and the power of positive thinking.

Cheers bro
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Old January 18th, 2011, 02:48 PM   #6
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I like the Four Hour Work Week. Someone on this site recommended it a few years ago and I'm glad they did. It's full of useful information. TIm Ferris is the author.
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Old January 18th, 2011, 04:29 PM   #7
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I've read these books for over 20 years, listened to tapes and CDs and attended seminars. I have no problem with any of them nor do I have a problem with the author or speaker hypeing his or her product. I found one of the best books (for me) was The magic of thinking big. I've read it so many times it fell apart and The 7 habits of highly effective people. Both very eye opening books.

Here's the thing. The books, tapes, CDs and seminars are a big waste of money if you don't put what you have read or heard into practice. Reading or listening alone won't change anything. You can't look at it and say 'well this doesn't really apply to me' or 'I don't do this' or whatever the reason is. If you put into practice 1 new thing everyday and work at it then it will make a difference whether in your personal life, business life, relationships, whatever.
The key is to read and try, listen, HEAR (big difference between the 2- I listen to my wife of 42 years but I don't always HEAR her, if you know what I mean) and then DO. No try, DO. Will everything work? Nope. Will things that do work work as well as you want? Nope, but here's an old saying I learned lots of years ago. "If you keep doing what you're doing, you'll keep getting what you got and if you don't like what you got then you got to do something different." Another one is this "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results".
All that means is if you feel that you might get something out of reading motivational books or listening to a motivational speaker either live or on CD then do it but don't waste your time or money if you aren't willing to put it in practice.
OK folks please fill out the survey and drop it in the box before you go. ;-O
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Old January 18th, 2011, 05:36 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
I've read these books for over 20 years, listened to tapes and CDs and attended seminars. I have no problem with any of them nor do I have a problem with the author or speaker hypeing his or her product. I found one of the best books (for me) was The magic of thinking big. I've read it so many times it fell apart and The 7 habits of highly effective people. Both very eye opening books.

Here's the thing. The books, tapes, CDs and seminars are a big waste of money if you don't put what you have read or heard into practice. Reading or listening alone won't change anything. You can't look at it and say 'well this doesn't really apply to me' or 'I don't do this' or whatever the reason is. If you put into practice 1 new thing everyday and work at it then it will make a difference whether in your personal life, business life, relationships, whatever.
The key is to read and try, listen, HEAR (big difference between the 2- I listen to my wife of 42 years but I don't always HEAR her, if you know what I mean) and then DO. No try, DO. Will everything work? Nope. Will things that do work work as well as you want? Nope, but here's an old saying I learned lots of years ago. "If you keep doing what you're doing, you'll keep getting what you got and if you don't like what you got then you got to do something different." Another one is this "Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results".
All that means is if you feel that you might get something out of reading motivational books or listening to a motivational speaker either live or on CD then do it but don't waste your time or money if you aren't willing to put it in practice.
OK folks please fill out the survey and drop it in the box before you go. ;-O
Come clean Don, are you also an ex-Amway salesperson ;)?

The chapter on excuse-itis in the magic of thinking big is a great chapter. Definitely a great book.
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Old January 18th, 2011, 08:35 PM   #9
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Ha?

@ Adam, DVinfo is great resource but its only a small, small piece of the puzzle in being succesful. Obviously, I know it's how you use the info and not how much money you spend. The author isn't saying go buy my other book, in fact he is recommending other authors who have made him who he is.

My point is I did little to nothing in improving myself and my business over the last few years. I know a fellow on this site who uses a business coach, SEO Help and reads many books on the regular and is pulling in 3X the money in weddings then I am. His product isn't much further from mine, but yet he can charge $6K and I can't. Also, hopefully, this post will inspire others to research more than just this site and think about how they run their business, manage their money and how they could improve to become even better.

How about WEVA or any other video events that you have attended that have helped you out?

Thank you for all those who gave me tips on some good books. I've ordered a few Randy and Don has mentioned.

Best,
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Old January 18th, 2011, 08:56 PM   #10
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I'm a big Seth Godin fan, and some of his books have really helped me...it's really well written too! Purple Cow and All Marketers Are Liars are my two favorites, but he's written plenty.

Rework by Jason Fried was short and sweet...I've read it a few times...and will probably read it more!
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Old January 18th, 2011, 10:13 PM   #11
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Kelly you have lofty and ambitious goals and I commend you for that!

One suggestion I would make, if you have not done an formal business plan for your business, go and learn what is involved and begin the process now. Because of your goals there are lots you right now couldn't fill in, but you will know what you need to determine, if you are to build a viable business based on your goals.

The business plan process is painful because it forces you to prove how you are going to go from point A to point B. It also forces you to prove that point B can even exist in your market.

In your business plan maybe it wouldn't be going from Point $2k straight to Point $6K, all in one big jump, but from $2k to $3K and then from $3K to $4500 and lastly from $4500 to $6K and doing it in steps. What the business plan forces you to do is to verify what you are going to do and who you will sell to, to make each one of these progressions.

So if you start the process now and see all the "blanks" you don't have the answer for yet, as you are doing your research, those "blanks" may get filled in from the knowledge you glean.

If the business plan is to be truly viable, you have to be honest with yourself and it as you fill it in. This can be the real painful part, admitting shortcomings in your business model and how you are going overcome them to reach your goals. This will be where your research comes in, showing you what you can do, to overcome what you need to.

Seriously though without a business plan of some sort, trying to get to the next levels will most likely be done by a shotgun method of "do some stuff and see if any of it works". That will render some results, but isn't a very focused use of either your time and effort.

Here's another old business adage for you to toss in the back of your brain. "Work smarter...not harder to get to where you want to go".
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Old January 18th, 2011, 11:00 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Panado View Post
Some books I found value in reading :

How to win friends and influence people - Dale Carnegie
Think & Grow Rich - Napoleon Hill
The Power of Positive Thinking - Norman Vincent Peale
The secret (as over hyped as it is)
The go-getter
The magic of thinking big
The greatest salesmen in the world by Og Mandino

A few of these are foundational books in "self help". When I was in my previous career in sales, these were required reading to learn how to deal with others, overcome objections tactfully, and overall learn to be a better person.

If you read only 2 books, I'd say read How to win friends and the power of positive thinking.

Cheers bro
I agree with this post. Your 2 favs have been so important in my life.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 10:16 AM   #13
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Hi Kelly,

A lot of good points have already been made. We would not be where we are today if we isolated ourselves and if we did not learn from others, both in the field of Weddings and Events and in the broader scope of business and marketing.

A business plan is huge...for the reasons already listed. A business plan is not glamorous or cool, but it will help you target where you want to go how you plan to get there and that is really COOL. Last year we attended a one day business plan workshop called The Simple Plan by Sage Wedding Pros. They made it easy and even fun. I highly recommend their workshop to anyone who is serious about there business.
Sage Wedding Pros Sage advice for your wedding business
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