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No Limits

bigg-success-profiles.jpgWe’re introducing a new feature today called Bigg Success Profiles. We want to feature members of our community talking about what life on your own terms means to them. Today on The Bigg Success Show, we talked with Pavel Sokolovsky. Pavel is one of the founders of an exciting new business, Meet Me at Green. Let’s get to the conversation …

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marylynn
Welcome to The Bigg Success Show, Pavel.

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pavelThanks Mary-Lynn. Thanks George. I’m a long-time listener and first-time caller!

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marylynnWe love talking about life on your own terms and we love hearing the stories of members of our community. So let’s kick it off, Pavel. What does life on your own terms mean to you?

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pavelTo me, life on my own terms has a lot to do with ambition. I believe I’m a pretty ambitious young man and I wouldn’t want anybody to put a limit on what I can and cannot do professionally or socially, for that matter. One of the reasons I went toward small business, and not corporations as many of my classmates did, is because I didn’t want to be pigeon-holed by my level at the corporation. Whether you’re a first-year associate, analyst, or whatever it might be, it tends to come with a lot of strings attached and affects whether or not your ideas are taken seriously. Now I’m sure there are people who break this mold – there are all-stars – but this tends to be the case. So that’s why I went into a small business. I wanted to be able to use my potential to its fullest. I want to explore my limits and be the best business person I can be. Starting my own business allows me to do that because I don’t have a boss saying, “No – you can’t do this project.” I only have the market telling me what it will and will not accept, which is great.

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georgeThat’s awesome, Pavel. Your classmates were going off to Fortune 500 companies and large consulting firms. Did they ever question you or ridicule you for going off on your own?

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pavelLuckily, they’ve all been very supportive of me. They all know that I’m very entrepreneurial. So they tend to accept that. They have their day jobs – from 8 to 6 or 9 to 5, whatever it may be – and I work what I’ll call my extended hours!

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george
I like the way you said that!

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pavelBut we’re after slightly different things. It’s understood that there’s going to be more than one way to get what we need out of life.

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marylynnEverybody for their own terms, right? Pavel, what would you say is your biggest challenge to living life on your own terms right now?

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pavelWhen you’re starting a business, it’s not the same as a regular corporate job because your cash flow is a little more unpredictable. Many times, you’ll find yourself pinching pennies because you didn’t get paid this week. But you keep your head up because you know if you achieve your goals, the money will naturally follow. While your cash flow is tight, you just have to accept it, not spend it, save up, invest in your business and hope for the best!

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marylynnSo Pavel, what are you doing right now to overcome this challenge?

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pavelI try to save up a little in a slush fund to treat myself every now and then and to keep my sanity. I like to go out with my friends. I also have a hobby purchasing books on Amazon. I just can’t stop!

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georgeNice plug! Ca-ching! Now Pavel, what are you doing that’s really fun – either at work or in your personal time?

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pavelMy day job is fun. Meet Me at Green has been fun – programming the web site, organizing the people involved and trying to recruit more members. As this community grows, so does my site and its usefulness to all the members. I’m sure you expected an answer like, “I love to go skiing in Aspen on the weekend” but, in reality, when I work on Meet Me at Green, I am having fun. That’s the best part of it.

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georgeFortunately, or unfortunately, we can totally relate to what you’re saying. It occurs to me, Pavel, you are really into green – whether it be money or the environment!

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pavelThe money is definitely not my number one goal, but it’s a good way to validate what you’re doing.

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marylynnWe wish you the best of luck with your business, Meet Me at Green. Can anybody join?

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pavelWe’re focusing on businesses that are involved in green products and services. But if you have a passion for green, if energy efficiency or environmental awareness is important to you, then please sign up! Membership is currently free.

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Thanks Pavel for sharing what life on your own terms means to you.

How are YOU living life on your own terms?

Please share your story with us by leaving a comment below, calling us at 888.455.BIGG or sending us an e-mail at bigginfo@biggsuccess.com. We may feature you on an upcoming Bigg Success Profiles show.

We thank you so much for reading our post today!

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Please join us next time when we'll talk about the most important thing to find before you start a business. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!

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Overstepping Stones

steppingstones We’re sure you’ve heard of stepping stones. Today we want to talk about overstepping stones.

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We’re proud residents of the State of Illinois. We’re dismayed, however, that our great state has been getting some bad press recently because of the actions of our Governor, Rod Blagojevich. While he hasn’t been convicted yet of any wrongdoing, it appears that he’s in deep trouble.

A state of dissatisfaction

It’s rumored that he felt he had reached a stalemate in his career. He wanted to make more money. He even had aspirations of running for President. But even before this scandal broke, his approval rating was incredibly low (the last number we heard was 4%). If you look at the state of our State, you can understand why.

He looked at every opportunity for a stepping stone, which culminated in what appears to be illegal activity. That got us thinking – we all need stepping stones to help us get to the next level of success.

Overstepping the bounds

But there’s a fine line between a stepping stone and what we’ll call an overstepping stone.

We abuse our stepping stones when we overstep our bounds. It appears our Governor did this on at least three levels:

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Is Passion Overrated?

quote For our discussion on passion today, we talk with one of the most awesome people we’ve met since we started BIGG Success: Jim Bouchard. He’s a black belt turned motivational speaker. He does a great job helping you get in touch with your personal power. Recently, Jim turned the table on us – instead of us being the interviewers, we were the interviewees!

But that doesn’t mean we didn’t take the opportunity to send a few questions Jim’s way – we love to hear his fantastic insight! So today we thought we’d share some of the highlights with you.

Let’s check into the conversation as we talk with Jim about passion …

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jimThere’s a lot of rhetoric about getting into a business that expresses your passion. The business I’ve been involved with for a long time is the martial arts business. Most martial artists will go into business – start a school – because it’s our passion, but it’s not always the best way to make money. I think that’s a very important, and often overlooked, factor when entering an entrepreneurial life. Passion is necessary, but it’s not the only ingredient that’s necessary.

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georgeThat’s a great distinction. It’s the old story – I have a hobby I love that I turn into a business. Now I don’t love my business or my hobby. Think about your hobbies, but also reflect on the elements of that hobby that you really enjoy. Teaching has been my hobby, because I had my businesses full-time. What I got out of it was the joy of helping people and seeing the light bulb come on. Bigg Success fulfills me in the same way.

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jimThat’s what people really need to look at. When you open these doors, you find passions that you never knew existed. I didn’t set out to get into the speaking business. I did always have the ambition to write a book at some point, but I never thought I’d go out into the speaking world. Like you, George, I found it was just a natural extension of the teaching that I liked to do – in my case within the martial arts world.

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marylynn You’re such a great presenter, Jim. How did that happen for you … that you ended up getting into the speaking business?

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jimThat’s a great question – it actually came from some of my martial arts students. I was sharing the martial arts philosophies that helped me create an anchor and a sense of value and worth in my life. They found themselves applying these philosophies to their business and personal life. A few of them encouraged me over the years to take my message to a different audience – not everybody wants to learn how to punch and kick, but everyone wants to learn how to develop their personal power, their capacity to act effectively. That’s how it got started. Then one of my mentors told me that I was already presenting every day anyway – I went on the floor and taught! So for me, it was a very natural transition. But I’m going to mark it this way … one of the greatest gifts that I learned from the martial arts was the idea of beginner’s mind. The whole world is open as a learning experience for us and we should never stop to pat ourselves on the back too long. Perfection is not a destination … it’s a never ending process. So I’m going through the same process as a speaker that I went through as a martial artist. I want to learn, I want to grow, and I want to be a better presenter every day. And I know you guys feel the same way!

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georgeAbsolutely, Jim! The thing that strikes me from your story – you said some of your students made a suggestion. With that one little suggestion, and you listening carefully and then processing it, you found this opportunity. That’s something we all need to be aware of – opportunity doesn’t hit you like a train. In most cases, it’s very subtle. But that’s where you’ll find that thing that you really want to do!

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Does It Pay to be Greedy?

It’s okay to be stupid if you’re not greedy. It’s okay to be greedy if you’re not stupid. But it’s never okay to be greedy and stupid.

George said that’s why he’s never been greedy. A man has to no his limitations!


Bridge over troubled waters

But greed is a bit like confidence and cockiness. Picture a bridge … on this side of the water, we’re confident. But cross the bridge and we’re cocky. We adore confidence; we despise cockiness. And this bridge between the two can be very short. Of course, some people go way over to the other side. 

That’s also true with greed. There’s a short bridge between ambition and greed. It pays to get right up to the bridge … that’s where you’ll find bigg success.

But don’t go over it … that’s where mistakes are made.

This applies to our businesses, our careers, and our personal finances. If your goal is to achieve bigg things, you have to think and dream bigg.

But don’t cross the bridge, because greed is like a drug. Once a person starts, it’s hard to stop. Once they’re in deep, they start to do stupid things because they have to feed the addiction … the greed.

In this context, stupid means that someone isn’t thinking logically. They’re letting emotions rule the day, not making decisions based on the facts. They start thinking like a gambler, just rolling the dice and hoping for the best. 

A recent example

A great example is the most recent real estate boom. George has a friend who invests in real estate. During the boom, George saw some market data about returns on real estate investments. He didn’t think it made sense because the returns were projected at a lower rate than the known cost. So George asked his friend about it. His friend had an explanation that still didn’t make sense. They went around a few times. Finally George’s friend said that you had to count on someone being a bigger sucker than you (those are George’s words), but his friend confirmed it.

Look at what’s happened – a lot of people have lost small (even large) fortunes because of untimely real estate investments. We know the rest of the story. It all came crashing down.

What Warren Buffett says about greed

We’ve said that it’s okay to be ambitious, but don’t be greedy. But it appears that Warren Buffett may disagree with us. Warren Buffett, of course, is the great investor and chairman of Berkshire Hathaway. He says,

“Be fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful.”

So, according to Warren Buffett, there are times when it pays to be greedy. And apparently it pays well because he’s built his career (and his fortune) on being greedy when others were fearful. 

So we say it’s okay to be ambitious, but don’t be greedy. Warren Buffett says you should be greedy when others are afraid.

What do you think … does it pay to be greedy? Leave a Comment to share your opinion.

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