Jeff Hoffman is a successful entrepreneur, proven CEO, worldwide motivational speaker, published author, Hollywood film producer, and a producer of a Grammy-winning jazz album in 2015. He has been the founder of multiple startups, has been the CEO of both public and private companies, and has served as a senior executive in many capacities. Jeff has been part of a number of well-known companies, including Priceline.com. uBid.com, ColorJar, and more.
Jeff is a featured business expert seen on Fox News, Fox Business, CNN, CNN International, Bloomberg News, CNBC, ABC, and NPR, and in publications including Forbes, Inc., Time, Fast Company, the Wall Street Journal, and more. You can find out more about Jeff and the work that he is doing by visiting his website at jeffhoffman.com
1. Don’t Fear Failure… Fear Not Trying
Failure is an inevitable part of life.
Most of us spend our whole lives trying to escape and avoid it when we should be running towards it.
We’ve been taught our whole lives that failure is somehow a bad thing, that it means you aren’t a “real” man, or that you aren’t good enough.
In reality, failure is simply feedback.
Instead of running from failure, embrace it.
Learn to fear not trying instead of failing.
… When you fail, you grow, you learn, and you improve.
When you allow your fear of failure to control your actions you end up paralyzed and never take action.
As a result, you stagnate, burn out, and eventually die with your best work inside of you.
2. Follow your Curiosity and Ignore the Labels
It’s easy to allow your label to control you.
Think about it…
How many times have you thought to yourself
“Wow, I’d love to dive into real estate investing, but I’m in IT, I can’t do that”
“I would really enjoy learning how to dance the Tango, but I’m a powerlifter so that’ll never happen”
“I’d really love to produce an album but I’m a marketing guy… That’s not really my style”
We get so caught up in our own labels that we prevent ourselves from pursuing our deepest passions and curiosity.
You are a learning machine… Not an occupation.
Just because you make money in a certain way or have been in a specific niche for a long time doesn’t mean that you can’t learn new skills.
… It doesn’t mean that you can’t pursue new hobbies, passions, and businesses.
As Joseph Campbell says, “Follow your bliss”.
Pursue what makes you curious, no matter how odd or out of character it may seem.
At the end of the day, the person who wins at life is the person who leaves it all on the field.
So stop holding back from life because your interests don’t conform to your label.
3. Stick to One Pursuit at a Time
Although it’s important that you have a wide variety of interests and hobbies to pursue, it’s even more important that you understand how to successfully pursue each interest.
How do you do this?
… One at a time.
Although Jeff has a wide variety of achievements and accolades ranging from the transportation business to the music & film industry to consulting and keynote speaking, he didn’t try to accomplish all of these things at once.
He devoted himself single-mindedly to each task for a period of 3-5 years.
In your own life, you can do anything that you want.
But you must learn to focus on only one thing at a time…
As the old adage goes, “The fox who chases two rabbits catches none.”
Pick one passion, define what constitutes “success” with regards to that passion, pursue it single-mindedly until you achieve your goal an then move on.
4. Eradicate Your Fear of Failure with This Simple Exercise
If you are afraid of failure, then listen up.
I’m about to share a fool proof strategy to eradicate your fear and move forward with your life.
Are you ready?
Then here it is…
Anytime you are afraid of failing, dive into your failure.
Ask yourself “What will happen if I fail and how can I recover?”
For example, if you are considering starting a new business and you fail miserably, what will actually happen?
… And more importantly, how can you minimize the damage?
If you fail at the entrepreneurial endeavor you can:
- Move back in with your parents
- Get a 9-5 corporate job for 6-12 months
- Save every penny that you can
- Try again
When you break it down, it doesn’t seem so scary, right?
The concept of failure is often more terrifying than failure itself.
When you look at the reality of your situation, you will quickly realize that you can overcome any setback with relative ease and quickly get back on your feet if things go South.
So feel the fear.
Figure out your escape plan.
And then take action.
5. Begin with the End in Mind
One of the biggest mistakes that most entrepreneurs make is that they begin without a clear end goal in mind.
They set all of these wild goals and ambitions but never really know where the path is ultimately going to take them.
Before you set out to achieve anything, you need to begin with the end in mind.
What counts as success?
What counts as failure?
What quantifiable metrics can you use to determine whether or not you’ve achieved success?
When you have a clear end game in mind, the day to day tasks of pursuing a goal becomes much simpler.
You know exactly what you need to do, what you need to avoid, and how you can expedite the path to your goal.
Take some time to sit down after listening to this interview and write out answers to the following:
What does success look like in my:
- Personal development
- Physical health
When you know exactly what you are trying to get out of life, life has a way of helping you succeed.
Begin with the end in mind and your path to success will be far smoother and simpler.
6. Make People Understand Your “Why”
Oftentimes, as men, we get so caught up in our careers and finances that we can neglect important relationships and connections in our life.
One of the reasons that this is so easy to do is that we understand the bigger picture and just assume that everyone else in our life understands it as well.
We think to ourselves, “I’m working this hard for my family, for my community, and for our future… Surely they understand”.
But we never actually take the time to sit the important people down and help them understand why we are pushing so hard.
Your wife and kids probably don’t know why you are always at the office.
They assume that work is more important than they are and that you’d rather work than spend time with them.
Even when this isn’t the case…
As such, it’s important that you sell your proverbial “Board of Directors” (the important people in your life) on the “Why” of what you’re doing.
Why are you working so hard to build this business or advance your career?
Is it to…
- Retire early
- Pay for your kid’s college
- Take your wife on a 3 year round the world trip
- Get out of debt and have the money to work less than 10 hours a week
- Enjoy a better quality of life
- Give back to your community and make a real difference
Why are you doing what you’re doing?
Once you have the answer for yourself, share it with the important people in your life.
More often than not, they will understand and rally to help you.
7. Ideas are Welcomed, Execution is Worshiped
Simply put, ideas are great but execution is where the magic happens.
You can think and come up with ideas all day long.
But if you don’t get your ass out of the chair and make moves to achieve your goals, you will remain stuck exactly where you are.
Execution is everything.
Without the grit and determination to take action and make things happen, you will never succeed.
Become a master action taker and the world is yours.
8. Your Success is Someone Else’s Miracle
We live in such a guilt ridden society that it can be easy to get trapped in the mindset that success is dirty.
… It’s easy to believe that making money is wrong and that you should give away all of your surplus.
But this is a false concept.
The more successful you are, the more power and influence you can exert to help others.
When you have millions of dollars in the bank, it’s much easier to make a difference when disaster strikes.
When you have vibrant physical health, it’s much easier to help others overcome their own challenges.
When you are successful, you can show up as a miracle in someone else’s life.
If you want to make a real difference in the world, then success is your duty and obligation.
Forget what you’ve been told…
Becoming successful doesn’t make you greedy or power hungry.
It gives you the ability to make a difference.
9. What is Enough?
In pursuit of any goal, whether its…
- Financial success
- Career success
- Physical health
- Travel & Adventure
- Or fame
You must know when enough is enough.
When can you call it quits and move on to the next goal or activity?
If you don’t have a clear end game in mind, it’s easy to get caught in the comparison trap and waste your life constantly trying to compete with other people and buy the biggest boat, fastest car, or most luxurious mansion in town.
“What do I really need to be happy and feel fulfilled?”
There’s no right answer for everyone, but the more clearly you can figure out what you need to be happy, the easier it will be to achieve it.
Forget keeping up with the Joneses and showing off on Instagram.
Figure out what brings you joy and makes you feel fulfilled and then go achieve it.
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