An Open Letter To Those Who Are Struggling

Dear Friend,

Thank you for your letters and emails. I appreciate you sending me your ideas, but also for sharing your frustrations with me. It takes a lot of courage to be that open and honest.

But just as importantly, I appreciate your enthusiasm and ambition. You have the right attitude and as long as you keep going, you’ll go far.

Now I have a couple of questions to ask you, and then some advice on what to do next.

, is your current idea something you are dedicated to doing for 3 years, 5 years, or even 10 years?

Or do you think you’ll change your mind again, jump ship, and be on to the “next new shiny object idea” as soon as it comes along?

Now don’t get me wrong, it’s okay to change your mind.

In fact, a lot of my friends who I call successful struggled for a couple of years to “find their voice” and identity within their business.

But when they finally “let go”, and began to write and communicate with honesty and feeling, and when they allowed their business to become an extension of themselves, THAT is when success kicked in.

Second, I know you see a lot of people succeeding with gimmicky-style marketing. And to be honest, a lot of this is done simply to get attention in a crowded space.

HOWEVER, you must understand that it’s not the gimmicky marketing that is the secret ingredient to success.

What really matters is that a BIG IDEA lay beneath the marketing. And that is what really matters.

A big idea that sets you apart from everyone else.

And while you might not have struck upon your big idea yet, I’m pretty sure you’ve got it in you.

But right now, you need stability, focus, and the correct course.

Your current situation is like you’ve driven a tiny speedboat into the middle of an ocean during a hurricane. Your ambition is getting you tossed about in many directions.

What you need is a big, strong, steady ship that can move swiftly and safely through the choppy ocean.

So here’s what I want you to do next.

These 3 steps come from a book called “Mastering The Rockefeller Habits”.

Set a 10 year Mission.

Tell me, what big goal do you want to achieve in 10 years? It must be specific.

Mine, that I first set in 2009, is:

Help 1 Million Men and Women Transform Their Bodies and Their Lives

Once you’ve set this Mission, it will guide every decision you make.

It’s as if you’re walking in the desert, and you see a giant oasis 20 miles ahead. That’s your destination.

But as you walk along, there will be many distractions that tempt you to go off course.

And while you might zig and zag a bit, when you have your mission, your final destination, your oasis in the distance, you’ll forever remain on the correct course.

Keep your eye on that and you’ll never find yourself wandering aimlessly, or worse, changing course and going off in the complete opposite direction – often towards danger.

Having a mission will mean you’ll always come back to the path that keeps you going to that oasis.

Now I’ll admit, that might not be the best analogy, but I’m sure you’ll get what I mean.

The Mission guides your decisions.

And it should be something so powerful that you’ll stick to it on both great days (when you foolishly think you can do no wrong) and on the toughest days.

In fact, your mission will be the inspiration that sees you through the days when your traffic drops because of a Google change, or a competitor criticizes you on their website, or you have a fight with your partner, etc.

1) The Mission will always be there to guide you.

Take your time and think deeply about this…it’s one of the most important decisions you’ll make in your life.

2) Create core values for your business.

Your core values are the rules on which you operate your business.

You could almost imagine them as being your entire employee manual in just 5-10 bullet points.

Any time you or your future employees are faced with a decision, a simple review of your core values should be enough to help them make the right decision.

You don’t need a 150 page employee handbook when you have powerful core values to guide you.

I really enjoyed creating the core values for Turbulence Training back in 2010, and here they are for you:

1. Power people to peak potential

2. Help others: Customer service, customer service, customer service is our priority.

3. We are always learning & improving

4. We create products on science-based innovation

5. We are No BS and politically incorrect, and make no apologies for it

6. Never, ever, ever give up

Come up with at least 5 strategic moves that you are best at and will set yourself apart from the rest.

For me, these include:

–    Mastering direct mail

–    Improving online conversion

–    Boosting customer service/customer appreciation efforts

–    Creating the TT Certification

–    Filming more workout DVD’s

–    Improving my membership retention

What can set you apart?

Identify your unique ability. This is the attribute you have that you do better than anyone else. And trust me, we all have this. Use this invaluable trait you possess to build your business and add value in a way that no one else can.

That’s it my friend.

I hope these words help you shore up against the struggle that you face right now.

You’re strong enough, I know, to weather the storm.

And I look forward to hearing from you again when your fortunes have changed.

Your friend,

Craig Ballantyne
Early to Rise

“Make no little plans.” – Dan Kennedy