AMY PORTERFIELD: “They kind of looked at me like, wait a second. You're playing this down. And they called me out. They said, because you're scared.”
“Have you ever had a moment like that, where you knew that if you said yes, big things would happen? But those big things were freakin’ scary, and you would have to get really uncomfortable, and there'd be a lot of unknowns. But still, it's a big deal. But holy cow, it is so scary. You have, right? And if you say, ‘No, Amy, I haven't had big opportunities come my way like that,’ first of all, don't compare your opportunity to mine. We’re in totally different worlds, doing totally different things. But more so, if you feel like you haven't had big opportunities come your way, I'm going to challenge you. I'm going to say that you're probably living in fear so much that you can't even see the opportunity. You just keep slamming door after door after door because you don't even want to know if there's an opportunity because you're too scared to say yes to it.”
INTRO: I’m Amy Porterfield, ex-corporate girl turned CEO of a multi-million-dollar business. But it wasn't all that long ago that I lacked the confidence, money, and time to focus on growing my small-but-mighty business. Fast forward past many failed attempts and lessons learned, and you'll see the business I have today, one that changes lives and gives me more freedom than I ever thought possible, one that used to only exist as a daydream. I created the Online Marketing Made Easy podcast to give you simple, actionable, step-by-step strategies to help you do the same. If you're an ambitious entrepreneur, or one in the making, who's looking to create a business that makes an impact and helps you create a life you love, you're in the right place. Let's get started.
AMY: They called me out for playing small. Seriously, they did. Even though I had committed to playing a bigger game in 2019, they still caught me not living up to my full potential, and it hurt. So who am I talking about? Who are the “they”? My wonderful, phenomenal—are you ready for it?—my team. And before I get to the part where they actually called me out and what they said, I want you to know that there are going to be times, especially early on in your business or when you're still in your cubicle, waiting for the day where you can leave it all behind and create a business you love, there are going to be times when an opportunity arises; an opportunity that could change so much; one that will give you the tools, the courage, or the leverage you need to play a bigger game to take the leap you've been thinking about taking but maybe a little too scared to take. I want you to start looking for those opportunities. And when they show up, I want you to say yes.
Today, I'll share my story with you about how I almost didn't take an opportunity. What emotions came up for me, what happened when I said yes, and how you can keep an eye out for those moments that allow you to play a bigger game and how to gain the courage to say yes. Maybe you're in a nine-to-fiver, dreaming of becoming an entrepreneur so that you can have the freedom and flexibility to create a life on your terms, a life that fulfills you. Perhaps you're a part-time entrepreneur, but a full-time employee, waiting for the perfect moment to transition full time into your passion-filled business. Or maybe you're a full-time entrepreneur who's working endless hours, hustling to grow your business. No matter where you are, I want you to know that there are millions of opportunities coming your way. Or maybe they already have. And they may all seem scary, but this is the breakthrough that you really need, the breakthrough to get you started on your dreams, to finally leave your cubicle for good, to create a business that is wildly successful, to have the time and energy for the life of your dreams. So, friend, get ready, because this is the year you're going to say yes. Despite how scared you might be, despite how much fear you have about the situation, you're going to say yes, because your life, your dream, depends on it.
Okay, let me tell you how this happened to me, in hopes that it will inspire you to take the opportunity in your own life. Let's do this.
Okay, so, let me rewind just a bit. You all know that I have become great friends with Rachel Hollis. And the reason why I love being her friend is that not only is she incredibly fun to be around, but she understands the hustle of being an entrepreneur. Quite honestly, I think if you look up in the dictionary, she is the definition of hustle, in the greatest way possible. But I love being with her because we talk about everything. So we talk about business but then also all the stuff behind the scenes, partnerships, relationships, team building, the frustrations, running a business with ads and technology and all this stuff that frustrates us. I mean, we talk about it all—the good, bad, and ugly.
And on this particular day, I was telling her about my weight-loss journey, and I said, “Even though I've lost sixty-five pounds, for some reason, when I say that out loud, I want to justify it by saying, ‘But I'm not at my goal weight yet.’ I always want to tell people that.” And she's like, “Why do you feel like you have to say that?” And I said, “Because I'm afraid someone's going to look at me, and I'm a bigger girl, and they're going to be like, ‘Well, you've got a lot more to go.’”
And I realized when I was telling her that, I realized I still deeply care about what people think of me, especially in that area of being a bigger girl. And because 2019 was the year that I decided no more hiding, I am going out in a big way—pardon the pun—but I was going out. I was getting on video. No more hiding. All of me was just there. And so I felt like people were looking at me more. And it's a scary thing. I don't know if you can relate, but I think some of you can.
So anyway, I was telling her about this and how sometimes I feel like I need to justify myself because I've got this one thing, my weight issue, that I think makes me look weak. And I was just being honest with her about it. And she gets this look in her eye, and she said, “ You know, I want you to come on my stage at RISE,” which is her event with thousands and thousands and thousands of people, “I want you to come to my event at RISE, the one in Fort Myers, Florida, in January 2020.” This was in 2019 that she told me this. “And I want you to talk on stage.”
And at first I'm like, holy cow, that's kind of amazing. I'll do that. Like, I all speak on your stage. But then she said, “But not about business.” And I looked at her like, what else is there? What else would I talk about if I don't talk about marketing and list building and course creation and being an entrepreneur? What else is there to talk about? And I just kind of said that to her. And she’s like, “Your weight journey and the challenges you've had of building a business while also struggling with your weight loss, and all the thoughts and feelings you have around that.”
And in that moment, I couldn't even talk. I was like, no, no, no, no, no. You must have lost your mind. That's what I thought. And I think a nervous laugh came out like, yeah. And then, we just kind of went on, and we didn't really talk about it a lot. I think we got busy doing something else and then that was the end of it. And so we didn't really talk about it over the next few days, and I thought she must've been joking. Like, I don't think she's really serious about that. And quite honestly, I'll be the first to admit, at least in my mind, I live a fairly boring life, and I kind of like it that way. I'm a pretty private person. I don't share tons. Yeah, I've told you over the last year I've been on this weight-loss journey and what I've done, but I tend not to share all the things. That’s just my personality.
And so when she said, come on stage and talk about your weight-loss struggle, she didn’t even say, your weight-loss success of losing sixty-five pounds. She said struggle. And so I knew she meant my insecurities around it. And so in that moment, there was this opportunity glaring me right in the face, but it terrified me.
So when I went back to work and I had a team meeting, I casually mentioned that Rachel invited me to her stage. But then I said, “You know, it's not a big deal, guys, because she just mentioned it once, and she's my friend. So I never want to take advantage of her generosity. And so I'm not bringing it up again. And she's busy. So she's probably not even going to bring it up.” And my team went crazy. They recognized this huge opportunity, not for the generosity, not just because of generosity of getting on stage at RISE, in front of all these amazing women. Many of them would likely be my ideal-customer avatar. Many of them are go-getters. They're starting their businesses. They're starting to be entrepreneurs, not all of them, but a lot of them. But even beyond that, just the opportunity to start talking about my journey as an entrepreneur in new ways, my team saw that as a huge opportunity for my growth. But they also saw me saying, “But, guys, it’s not a big deal. I'm not going to bring it up with her again. If she brings it up, great, but no big deal.”
And in that moment, I could see the looks on their faces, and I knew this was a big opportunity for my growth. And I have some really big goals in 2020. One is to start a book. I want to write a book, and I want to start the experience and the journey of writing a book this year, finding an agent, signing with a publisher. And I don't necessarily want the book just to be about business—although, of course, it will have a huge focus on business—but I want it to be more than that. So when I start to talk about my journey in new, different ways, that helps me kind of get my head around this idea I have for a book. And so my team is well aware of that as well. And so they kind of looked at me like, wait a second. You're playing this down. And they called me out. They said, because you're scared.
Have you ever had a moment like that, where you knew that if you said yes, big things would happen? But those big things were freakin’ scary, and you would have to get really uncomfortable, and there'd be a lot of unknowns. But still, it's a big deal. But holy cow, it is so scary. You have, right? And if you say, ‘No, Amy, I haven't had big opportunities come my way like that,’ first of all, don't compare your opportunity to mine. We’re in totally different worlds, doing totally different things. But more so, if you feel like you haven't had big opportunities come your way, I'm going to challenge you. I'm going to say that you're probably living in fear so much that you can't even see the opportunity. You just keep slamming door after door after door because you don't even want to know if there's an opportunity because you're too scared to say yes to it. I could be wrong, but I feel like for some of you, that just hit home that the fear literally leads to you just subconsciously closing some doors. So starting now, I want you to be more open minded. I want you to start looking for those opportunities. They are there, my friend. I have no doubt in my mind.
Okay, so, back to the story. Once I had agreed to speak at RISE, because although I kept telling myself maybe she'll just forget about it, she didn’t. We solidified it. We got the contract out. It was happening. So once I realized, holy cow, I'm doing this, I felt all the emotions. I felt fear, doubt, imposter syndrome, excitement, I mean, everything. But I also felt a teeny twinge of courage. And here's what I did. Here's what I want you to do when an opportunity arises. I felt into my courage so much so that it snuffed out all the other emotions. I felt into my courage.
So fast forward to January 2020. There I was, seated across from Rachel, on her stage. It was an incredible experience. We talked about my struggle with weight. We talked about chasing a goal weight versus doubling down on habits. Holy cow, that was life changing. That's a whole other episode I've got to do for you about how instead of weighing myself every day, what I do instead, because, yeah, I was weighing myself every day. No judgment. That worked for me for a while over two years, but I had to change things up, so I started to double down on my habits. And we talked about that for the first time onstage together, and then I implemented it afterwards. We also talked about my sex life with Hobie. I know. I can't believe I just said that out loud, but we even kind of got into that. And we just talked about—I know. Did I just freak you out? We talked about everything as it relates to my issues with weight and what I thought about my weight and all of that stuff. And we still kind of brought it back to, but I’m still able to create this amazing business and have this multi-million-dollar experience inside this business because my weight doesn’t define me, because even though one area of my life might not be dialed in, it doesn't mean the whole thing has to be messy. I mean, there's so much there that we unpacked.
So, more so than anything, I think Rachel knew that I needed to be challenged to step out of being so comfortable with the message that I've delivered for eleven years now. I could tell you about list building. I could tell you about digital-course creation, webinars, until the cows come home. But if I was being really honest, there's still this part of my life that still makes its way into my entrepreneurial journey that I don't talk about as much. Getting up there, having that conversation was totally liberating.
And here I was, two months before that happened, trying to downplay it, pretend like that conversation with Rachel and I and that invite to speak at RISE never even happened. And if I didn't pursue it, I would still not be living up to my potential. And I think that's the number-one thing that scares me more than anything: not living up to my potential, not fully stepping into the goals that I've set for myself. This is one of those opportunities that gave me more direction and courage and more evidence that I can go big. And it allowed me to move forward in my personal life as well as my business. Funny how those big, scary experiences work their way into everything that you do. And aside from that, most importantly, that whole experience of playing it down, maybe it won't happen, I'm not going to bring it up again, and then it happening and going for it, it gave me a new perspective, a new level of courage to take that leap into unchartered territories. And when you do that once, it's easier to do it again.
So I want you to think, has there been an opportunity that you've been shying away from because it seems intimidating or because you don't think you're ready—that's a big one—or you feel you need more education, more confidence, more knowledge. Fill in the blank. I really want you to think about that because I’m going to guess there's something out there. I don't want you to say yes to everything that comes your way, because I know that can sidetrack you. But I do think there's probably an opportunity out there that you're not saying yes to because you're just freakin’ freaked out about it. I get it. But open that door. I want you to explore that.
This reminds me of one of my Digital Course Academy®️ students. Her name's Renee Dalo, and Renee is a successful wedding planner coach. And she was known in her friend circle as the go-to event-planning girl. When her best friend got engaged, Renee planned her entire wedding, just for fun. And after planning this stunning wedding, all of the guests started saying, “Who planned your wedding?” And that's when Renee started getting requests from people to plan their wedding. So Renee began planning weddings as a hobby but not really charging anyone for it. I know many of you listening right now can relate to this experience, right? And then when Renee got married, it was her wedding planner who told her she couldn't believe Renee wasn't a wedding planner herself.
Here was her opportunity. And right away, she shielded away from it. Why? Because she was worried she couldn't compete in the Los Angeles wedding market. She had all these doubts, all these fears. Imposter syndrome, totally playing a part here. And while it took her a while, she finally did say, yes, I'm going to do it. She now runs a massively successful business and recently launched her very first digital course, which made five figures on her first launch.
I love this because she started as a hobby, and then she thought, I can't charge for this. And then an actual wedding planner said, I can't believe you're not a wedding planner. Isn't it funny that sometimes we just need permission from someone we trust or admire or respect? Sometimes that happens, too. I think there's probably a little part of that with Rachel where she's like, you need to tell a bigger story. And this is freakin’ Rachel Hollis. When she tells you to tell a bigger story, you say, okay, I'll do it. I mean, look at her track record, right?
And so sometimes people you respect and admire, they're telling you to go out and do this. And maybe that's just all you need. Now, some of you close the door on those people as well, because you're afraid. No judgment here. Let's just be honest with ourselves, though. Sometimes we are so scared that we don't even see the opportunity in front of us.
So tell me this. Can you think of an opportunity that you have in front of you right now that is just waiting for you to say yes? Or is there something that you have said yes to that you need to take a moment and just pat yourself on the back and say, hell, yeah, I did that. I said yes to that, and that was scary. If you've already had this experience, let's acknowledge that. But if you haven't yet or just recently you haven't said yes to something that scares you, I think it's time. And if you can't think of anything, be open minded. I bet you anything it's going to find you sooner than you think.
And if this whole conversation kind of freaks you out, I have a few things that I want to challenge you to do. And these are the steps that I took to gain the courage I needed to say yes to the experience at RISE. So, one, I want you just to sit with it. Ask yourself, what's the worst thing that could happen if I say yes to this opportunity? And then right away, also ask yourself, what's the best thing that could happen? And allow yourself to dream big. Dream in terms of playing a bigger game.
So just like when I spoke with Rachel on stage, and she brought up chasing a goal weight versus creating unbreakable habits, and even just that conversation that I can't wait to have a full conversation on the podcast about how that literally, I think, really has changed my life, but just stepping into that, I think, allowed me to realize that I had so much opportunity to grow around just that one topic. So, what's the worst that could happen? The worst that could happen, I thought, is I'm going to embarrass myself. I'm going to talk about things that are outside of my wheelhouse, and they're not related to being an entrepreneur. And I'm going to kind of confuse people about my message, and I'm going to look weak. Like, all of that.
And then I asked myself, what's the best thing that could happen? I could share a bigger part of myself, and I could relate to women entrepreneurs who also struggle with maybe not just the weight, but feeling like they have a weakness in their life that they have to compensate for, and that's holding them back. When I thought about it like that, that I could touch lives, that's way bigger than any fear I had. I had to go for it. And so just the whole conversation that needed to be had, I just felt like I need to step into this in a bigger way.
And then, too, I shared it with my team, and I subconsciously think I did that so that they'd hold me accountable. I knew they weren't going to let me get away with not bringing it back up if, let's say, Rachel never mentioned it again. Luckily, that didn't happen. But if I had to go and say, “Hey, were you really serious? Do you really want me to speak on stage?” I was prepared to do it because my team's like, oh, hell no, you're not playing a small game here. She invited you on the stage. You're making it happen, and you're going to talk about the stuff that makes you most uncomfortable.
So sharing it with somebody was kind of a big deal for me, so I want you to do the same. If there's an opportunity that you're not saying yes to, but you know you should, tell somebody else that you're not doing it, someone that's going to be like, no, no, no. Let's get on this.
I challenge you to do so. And here's what I want you to do. I want you to get into the Online Marketing Made Easy Facebook group. I've got this free Facebook community. Just search Online Marketing Made Easy in Facebook. And I want you to connect with other people that are also doing big things and finally saying yes to opportunities coming their way. And if you'll share your story in the group, I'll be sure to read every word. If you would be so courageous to talk about something you have said yes to that you were scared to say yes to, or something that you haven't said yes to yet but you know you'll grow if you actually just open that door and say yes to it and walk through that and really experience it. So if you want to share your experience, I'd love to hear from you, and I think others would find such inspiration with it as well.
All right. So there you have it. Let's wrap this up.
To be honest, if I wouldn't have taken that opportunity, if I wouldn't have shared it with others, I would have been kicking myself. And I just don't want that for you. I want you to say yes in the biggest, best, and scariest way.
This reminds me of my episode a couple weeks back with Jennifer Allwood, where she said, courage is what will make you say yes to things in spite of your feelings about it. Confidence says, I know what I'm doing. Courage says, I don't know what I'm doing, but I'll try it anyway. So good, right?
I want you to channel that when an opportunity comes up or if an opportunity has come up and you've been holding back. If you're ready to play a bigger game this year, and I mean truly ready to play a bigger game, you're going to have to say yes, yes to things that might seem scary, yes to things that you just kind of want to crawl under your desk and hide. But here's what's scarier: saying no and remaining where you are, maybe in that cubicle, maybe splitting your time between your dream career and your nine-to-five job or trading time for dollars or feeling stagnant in your business. So, my friend, here's to playing that bigger game and taking the leap.
All right. Next week, my guest has quite the story. She went from bankruptcy to being featured in Real Simple magazine, the Today show, InStyle and Elle magazine. Talk about a turnaround. Her name is Tracy Matthews, and she's not only one of my incredible students, she's also the creative visionary for multiple businesses that she owns, and she's an inspiring force in the entrepreneurial space. We're going to talk about owning your role as the creative visionary in your own business and protecting your creative energy so you can shine through authentically in all the content and products that you create. It's going to be inspiring and very tactical, and I can't wait for you to hear it.
And there may or may not be a bonus episode coming your way in the next week. Are you intrigued? To make sure you don't miss it, make sure you subscribe to my podcast so that you get notifications for all the episodes that are coming your way.
All right. I cannot wait to connect with you again same time, same place. See you next week. Bye for now.