AMY PORTERFIELD: “If you've gotten results for yourself or for somebody else, you have the knowledge to teach that in a roadmap or a blueprint or a system inside of a digital course. The thing that I want really to get across here is that that fear of, What if people talk about me? What if people think that I can't do this? What if no one buys? What if no one gets results? What if a bunch of people refund? Here's the truth. That's just your lizard brain trying to keep you in your very comfy zone, where you feel safe. You know that comfy zone. If you're in a nine-to-five job, you know it well, where money comes every two weeks, where you've got health insurance, and you don't really have to challenge yourself, and you can do a good job. Yeah, that zone is what I'm talking about. And every time you step out of that comfort zone, you're going to hear all those what ifs really loud.”
“Here's my trick, which, again, I wish someone taught me this early on. Whenever I hear myself saying, ‘What if nobody buys? What if not enough people get results? What if everybody refunds?’ You guys, this is what I told myself with, like, my first three digital courses every time I launched. These were the things I was freaked out about. Nowadays, when I hear myself say, ‘What if,’ and it's negative, I then say, ‘But what if it works? What if it's a huge blockbuster digital course? What if it changes thousands of lives? What if I make millions? What if this is my true path, like I finally found 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: So tell me this. Which of the following are you: (a) you're 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; (b) you're a part-time entrepreneur but full-time employee waiting for the perfect moment to transition full time into your online business; or (c) you're a full-time entrepreneur that's likely working a lot of hours right now, might be hustling to grow your business. A, B, or C?
Well, here's the deal. No matter which one describes you best, this episode is for you. Today I want to talk to you about betting on yourself, betting on your business. And I want to talk to you about how sharing your knowledge and skills inside of a digital course that you create is by far the single most strategic thing you can do to go all in.
Now, whether your digital course is focused on helping teachers with their curriculum or teaching busy moms how to make sourdough bread or helping travel agents in sustaining their businesses even in uncertain times or weight-loss coaching or teaching tax strategies to Etsy sellers or teaching creatives how to transform their sketches into unique patterns using Adobe Illustrator—for the record, these are all successful courses from my students—no matter what the course is that you want to create, it's actually not the topic that matters most. It's your willingness to believe in your abilities and to take yourself seriously. I need to repeat that one more time. It's not the topic that matters most. It's your willingness to believe in your abilities and to take yourself seriously.
Today you'll hear stories from myself and a few of my students on how we bet on ourselves despite the false beliefs that we might have had. Here's how I want you to use this podcast. Listen, and instead of thinking, That's cool, Amy. Good for you, I want you to put yourself in my shoes or one of my student’s shoes. I want you to see how similar your story is likely to mine or to theirs.
If you're listening to this in real time, the doors for Digital Course Academy®️ are closing today. And for some of you, you're still on the fence. The truth is, enrolling in Digital Course Academy®️ means that you're going to have to go all in. It means you're betting on yourself, and that can be a scary thing.
So this episode is for you, whether you're still on the fence about joining me inside of DCA or if you're making another big decision that requires you to go all in. And I pretty much think that means all of us. If you are an entrepreneur or a budding entrepreneur, there's always a decision that needs to be made, and you're always going to need to bet on yourself. So I'm going to give you some tools to do so today. This episode is a reminder that betting on yourself, believing you have what it takes to do the things you want to do, requires you to only take the next necessary step. That's all that's standing between you and your goals and desires, whether they be breaking through the very real glass ceiling and no longer living paycheck to paycheck or no longer working for someone else or whatever it is that might be your desire right now. We’ve got to talk about it, so let’s do this.
First up, I've got a little story for you about how I bet on myself by putting down some cold, hard cash toward my dreams. Before leaving my nine-to-five job, I invested in two digital courses. One was from Facebook marketing expert Mari Smith. She was one of my very first friends in the online-marketing sphere. And then the other was a video-marketing program. Now, these programs cost $1,000 each, so $2,000 total.
Truth be told, and I kind of am embarrassed to admit this because it doesn't sound totally responsible to some of you, I know, but I didn't have the money to pay for those courses, and so I put them on my credit card. Now, not saying this is right or wrong. I just know some people are a little judgmental about that.
But I did decide that this was important enough for me to do, make that investment. And then immediately, I just knew I would start learning and growing and building my business so I could pay off those credit cards quickly.
So it was strange making this sizable investment. I've never spent—actually at that point, I had never spent any money on a digital course. I had never purchased one. So $2,000? Yeah, I was a little bit freaked out about that. I was venturing into uncharted territories, and I wasn't totally sure what to expect.
And second of all, I was still at my nine-to-five job. So it felt strange to invest in something outside of that. So the thing is, I knew, though, that I wasn't the expert, and I had a lot to learn. And I knew it would take me forever to get there if I didn't learn from somebody who had gone before me.
One of the lessons that I learned early on, working with Tony Robbins, is that if you really want something—you want it bad—one of the best ways to move forward with that is figure out who already has what you want, who's already doing what you want to do, and learn from them, study what they're doing. Now, when Tony taught this years and years and years ago, he probably still teaches it, but way back then, he wasn't saying, “Go buy their digital course.” That wasn't really a popular thing as it is right now. Right now, because digital courses have literally become one of the most popular ways to learn, they're mainstream now. But back then, that wasn't the case. And so Tony was really referring to get into the proximity, spend time with this person, learn everything you can about what they're doing, how they're thinking, and just how they're getting that success. But the beautiful thing about the world we're living in today is that, well, you can buy a digital course and figure it out. And so that's what I did.
So my first investment was those two courses. And again, although it was really scary, I wouldn't change it for the world because, of course, it lit a fire in me to make things happen. And even though I was still at my nine-to-five job, I felt like I was getting momentum. I was moving forward. I wasn’t stuck anymore. And the ideas that came out of that course led to new ideas for me and new people that I met and new Facebook groups that I joined. So it opened up worlds for me beyond just those digital courses.
And here's what I realized, looking back on those first two investments. It made it all feel very real because for me, and I have a feeling for maybe you as well, when you lay down money and you make a big investment, it becomes a whole different ballgame. You've heard it before. When you pay, you pay attention. And I was paying attention because that was a lot of money. So that was my first experience in really moving forward from my nine-to-five job into creating this business I have today.
Okay, so now let's talk about that time where I bet on myself despite feeling like a total impostor. So you probably know my old friend, imposter syndrome. We are very close. And this is something that in the early days, it used to be something I felt like I could never get beyond.
I want to take you back to day one of my entrepreneurial journey. I was excited and nervous and energized, and I felt like a fraud. Yep. I experienced imposter syndrome from day one. And to be completely transparent, pretty much every damn day for the first two years. I've told this story before, but after I left my nine-to-five job, I was consumed with thoughts about what my coworkers would think about what I was doing online as I was building my business. I was consumed about what Tony Robbins or people in my family would think about my blog post or this video that I put up or something I posted on social. And they would think, Who is she to be teaching this? She doesn't know anything about that. Well, this is a joke. What is she doing? Have you seen what Amy's doing? She looks like an idiot. This is what I thought people were talking about me to others. And maybe they were, but I didn't know for sure. So really, who cares, right? And they likely didn't even care themselves, so they probably weren't even watching.
But here's something I wish that someone would have taught me early on. So if you're multitasking, come back to me, my friend, because I want you to hear this. If you've gotten results for yourself or for somebody else, you have the knowledge to teach that in a roadmap or a blueprint or a system inside of a digital course. The thing that I want really to get across here is that that fear of, What if people talk about me? What if people think that I can't do this? What if no one buys? What if no one gets results? What if a bunch of people refund? Here's the truth. That's just your lizard brain trying to keep you in your very comfy zone, where you feel safe. You know that comfy zone. If you're in a nine-to-five job, you know it well, where money comes every two weeks, where you've got health insurance, and you don't really have to challenge yourself, and you can do a good job. Yeah, that zone is what I'm talking about. And every time you step out of that comfort zone, you're going to hear all those what ifs really loud.
Here's my trick, which, again, I wish someone taught me this early on. Whenever I hear myself saying, “What if nobody buys? What if not enough people get results? What if everybody refunds?” You guys, this is what I told myself with, like, my first three digital courses every time I launched. These were the things I was freaked out about. Nowadays, when I hear myself say, “What if,” and it's negative, I then say, “But what if it works? What if it's a huge blockbuster digital course? What if it changes thousands of lives? What if I make millions? What if this is my true path, like I finally found it?” You're never going to know if you stay stuck in the negative what ifs.
Here's the thing. If you really care about the people you serve, the roadmap that you're giving them, and the results that they are getting, if you care about all of that, you can't lose, my friend. You are already winning. One of the things that I really like to double down on teaching inside Digital Course Academy®️ to all my students who are creating their own digital courses is as long as you care about that student and you obsess in the best way possible about them getting results, you can't lose and neither can they.
And if you're curious what it looks like to bet on yourself, it really is believing that you can get people results, that you care enough to get them to the finish line, that you have what it takes to lay it down into a roadmap or step-by-step process. Betting on yourself means that you genuinely know that you can do this. Like, deep down in your entrepreneurial heart you know that you can do this. Betting on yourself means that you no longer are looking outward for that special sauce that gives you an edge, that thing that will make people stop and pay attention to what you have to offer. Betting on yourself looks like this. You'll look in the mirror, and you tell yourself, “I am the mother-effing special sauce.” It’s not something that you need to go find. It’s in you. It's been you all along.
The name of this episode is “How to Create a Million-Dollar Business (What's Worked for Me), and for me, realizing I was the special sauce in my own life and business has played a big part of how I got to where I am today. As a side note, I also know that my privilege helped me get to where I am today. So that's one of the reasons why we awarded Digital Course Academy®️ scholarships to twenty highly deserving entrepreneurs, many in the startup stages of their businesses. This year, our company was committed to awarding at least 75 percent of scholarships to diverse businesses and business owners. The breakdown was 50 percent awarded to businesses owned by black, indigenous, and people of color; and 25 percent awarded to business owners of varied demographics, including age, religion, disability, gender, sexual preference, LGBTQ culture, and we also included veterans. I plan to continue this tradition with every launch of my program. So again, congratulations to our scholarship winners this year.
Okay. Switching gears just a bit, let's talk about a little limiting belief that goes something like this: I don't have enough time. I say this as lovingly as possible. But you have the same amount of time as Beyoncé and Oprah or whoever else you find insanely inspiring. We all have the same amount of time. And when it comes down to it, you've got to make the time. You have to find a way to prioritize what you want the most. I am not saying this is easy. I know that your circumstances could be dramatically different than most people. I get that. But I also know to build the business of your dreams, you don't have to hustle or grind yourself to the ground. But you do need to make some tweaks to your schedule. You do need to find a way to make this a priority.
My question for you is, Are you willing to sacrifice a little in the now to accomplish what you want in the future? How bad do you want it? And are you willing to change how you spend your time or tweak your schedule to support whatever it is that you want to create, be it a digital course or whatever else you're wanting to build and create?
For me, in the beginning, because I was still working my nine-to-five job, it was 5:00 a.m., before Cade and Hobie got up. It was weekends. It was some nights. And I wouldn't change that for anything. I didn't love it, but I knew what I wanted. That was for sure. Small sacrifices now will literally shape the future that you want to create.
Okay, let's take a moment and talk about technology. But first, you know how our moms and dads tell the stories of “Well, when I was your age, I had to walk uphill both ways to get to school while it was snowing.” And they tell those stories, right? Well, I feel like this is one of those moments where I want to tell you, back in the day when I started, technology was a joke compared to how it is now. There were not beautifully done, simple-to-follow how-to videos. It was so complicated. Like, literally, I just stood and stared at a video for probably two hours that was maybe five minutes long, thinking, What is he talking about? Is he is speaking in a different language? What is going on here? But I also wanted it bad. So I hunkered down and literally would just spend hours and hours and hours trying to figure it out. I was frustrated. Again, I'm not saying I liked this part, but I knew I needed to figure it out. And I didn’t have the money to pay for someone else to do it, so there I was.
Now, today, I promise you, you have it easier. But that doesn't mean anything, right? You're like, “Amy, it's still confusing to me.” If technology is that thing that stops you in your tracks, then no matter what I say, it's just going to be frustrating to you. Let it be frustrating and do it anyway. Figure it out. I promise you, if you take the time to find the tools that—usually, the ones that I recommend have really well done, simple-to-follow how to videos. They have great concierge that will help you walk through step by step what you need to do if you get stuck—but I promise you, you can tackle the tack. You can. And stick with me. I'll show you the ropes in terms of the easiest way to get through it, because if you join Digital Course Academy®️, you know I have a whole technology-resource library, right? If I ever want you to do anything with tech, I make a video, walk you through, click here, click there, do this, do that, so that it's step by step. Because this honestly was one area where I got stuck.
Okay. Next, I want to talk about the limiting belief that you're too young or you're too old. I know I just grabbed your attention. Some of you are just like, “Okay, I'm paying attention.” For those of you who think you're too young to be taken seriously, think again.
My student, HollyAnne Knight, is in her twenties, and she teaches quilting. Now, as you might be able to imagine, most of her audience is in their fifties and up. And guess what. She generated close to $50,000 with her latest launch. HollyAnne even said, “Who would have thought that a Millennial like me could be so successful teaching baby boomers how to quilt online?” She's kicking butt. And they love her.
Now, on the flip side, meet my student, Anne LaFollette, who spent twenty-five years climbing the corporate ladder, only to be laid off at age fifty-five. But she knew and believed that it was never too late to create. So she bet on herself and created a digital course. At age sixty-two, Anne just completed her sixth live launch. And in less than two weeks, in May of 2020, this year, during a pandemic, she generated over $111,000—$111,850 to be exact. How amazing is that?
These stories, my friend, are meant to inspire you, to show you what betting on yourself looks like. If you're feeling like you're too young to be taken seriously or to be seen as the expert or you're too old to start over and create a digital course, think again, my friend. Age is just a number, and these two women are perfect examples of that. I’m here to remind you that if I can do it, if they can do it, then you can do it, too. You have it in you right now.
If you related to any of these limiting false beliefs, then you also know that you could either believe them, or you could bet on yourself and see what happens. Because what if you create a business and a life that blows your mind, one you can only imagine right now in your dreams?
Today is the day I want you to bet on you. Maybe your next big leap is joining me inside of Digital Course Academy®️. Maybe it's another big decision in your business or in your life. No matter what, it's time, my friend.
Cheers to you doing big, bold things this year. Thanks so much for joining me here today. I'll see you next week, same time, same place. Bye for now.