Know Yourself + Life Update

Hey what’s up! In today’s blog post, I will share with you some useful life-things I’ve learned, and then share some updates on what’s been going on in my roller-coaster of a life.

I’m now in Sofia, Bulgaria, and a bit dazed to be honest. The culture shock every time I come back here hits me, perhaps because I don’t have a girlfriend here anymore to help ease me in.

I also partied it up + jet lagged myself AF in Amsterdam, which is why I’ve been feeling quite fatigued.

This experience has led me to realize some self-things, which I can share with you to your benefit. This first thing has been on my mind for a while.

The Distraction Addiction

I recently read a book called “The Distraction Addiction.” It was great, though quite lengthy, with fascinating tangents.

Reading it is a true test to one’s ability to focus. I’d say it’s an excellent book, but only if you can hang in there long enough for the all the pieces to epically come together.

In today’s society, we are filled with so many distractions: video games, TV, YouTube, social media, this, that, whatever.

I’ve blamed in the past many problems from this surge of internet usage, however now I am doubtful of the degree to which the internet has actually damaged us.

Simply put: now I believe, as realized from the book, that “distraction” comes from within. We simply find outlets to fuel that distraction.

I wouldn’t argue against the point that certain internet sites can inhibit your ability to focus. They are literally designed to distract you, and keep you on their sites.

However, I realized that the “need for distraction” came from within. It was “ego,” in a sense.

Even without the internet, your mind wanders everywhere. It can hardly stay focused on even the breath in meditation.

We must learn to use the internet consciously- to not go down endless loopholes, get triggered by keyboard warriors, or get distracted when we’re supposed to be working or studying.

You can download some software to help with that (I use BlockSite for Chrome), cut out some sites, and try to use the internet less…

But ultimately your ability to focus is reliant primarily on your mindfulness. If you are aware of what you are focusing on, and aware of those tempting feelings that make you distracted, then you can let go of them… And focus.

I think this is becoming increasingly important. I know that for myself, distraction addiction is a huge problem hindering my success in life.

It prevents me from self-connection, identifying my own needs, growing my business, getting dates, and ultimately doing what would make me truly fulfilled.

Distractions are low-hanging fruit that temporarily ease the pain of being a human. Embracing the pain and handling the situation is what’s better for you, though harder in the short-term.

Speaking of this, I recently downloaded video games and started playing again. Oops…

Know Yourself

Now I’ve learned a self-lesson. I play video games to self-medicate the pain of jet lag, culture shock, emotional pain, and well… Fear.

I typically have video games deleted completely off of my computer, but during intense periods of my life, I tend to re-download them.

The gaming is typically great at first. My recent go-to game has been CS:GO, but I’ve played all kinds of other games.

At first dying or losing doesn’t bother me. Then, I get on an epic win streak. Because I haven’t played the game in a long time my focus is razor-sharp & the game pairs me with new players that I can easily defeat.

The wins are exhilarating. Sometimes I save the game for my team, eliminating 3 enemies and defusing the bomb all on my own with no help!

Then the high/low cycles start… Maybe I get angry at a teammate for not playing with the team and costing us the game. Or I rage when I lose focus (Distraction Addiction?) and miss some otherwise easy shots.

The truth is that for all humans we have these patterns & habits, and I think it’s very important to know them.

You can make more conscious decisions when you know what your patterns & weaknesses are, to prevent yourself from falling into a trap.

For example, when I am jet lagged all I want to do is sleep. So I’ve set up a 2-alarm system that wakes me up from one alarm, then I must enter another room for the second, besides which is an open window shining light in, and a large glass of water.

The past 2 mornings were rough. I wanted more than anything to return to bed. But I out-smarted my tired-self, the sunlight + water was too stimulating for me to return to sleep!

When you know your patterns, you can also be more self-compassionate. I am more accepting and not self-hating for my sudden video game habit.

My brain is just like “WTF is going on, I’m in Bulgaria,” and I’m also incredibly tired. I let myself play video games on flights too, which likely primes my brain for more video game playing when I arrive in new destinations far away.

In the end understanding yourself allows you more self-compassion, you can better set up life for success (instead of deluding yourself), and you can prepare for what you know will be an inevitable desire.

2 Weeks of… Woah

Speaking of travel, I’m now in Sofia, Bulgaria. The past 2-3 weeks have been much more hectic than I would’ve liked. In fact, the past 1-2 months have been fairly brutal.

In the past 2 weeks I’ve been in Montreal (which was incredible), Texas (business), Phoenix (family), Tucson (Gov. stuff), Phoenix, Amsterdam (2-day layover), and Sofia. I’m tired!

It’s good that I understand myself better, as normally I’d be getting down on myself for my constant fatigue, hunger, exhaustion, distraction addiction, and all around feeling weird.

Now I just know that I’ve burnt out on a lot of travel.

This isn’t something I’d like to continue. My goal of “traveling less” for 2020 is off to a rough start!

The problem can be traced all the way back into December or even November of 2019 though- I was optimistic to return to Phoenix to see family, however I didn’t create a plan for what’s next.

I was enjoying life, going with the flow, whatever, so I thought it would be great when I arrived. I was wrong.

The jet lag & reverse culture shock hit me. Turns out I really don’t like the city of Phoenix either, primarily due to the long commutes from where my family lives. It’s also not THAT social of a city when compared to Montreal, Sofia, Chiang Mai.

I thought I’d “make the next decision when I arrive,” but what actually ended up happening was a lot of confusion & procrastinating.

This led to a mess of events that leads to where I am now. Derp.

Important self-lesson: consequences you are experiencing today were unlikely from actions you took today. The things you do MONTHS AGO affect you RIGHT NOW.

So make sure you’re making good decisions- it’ll make or break your future you!

So… Bulgaria: How Are You?

To be honest, I’m struggling over here. It was a hard decision to come.

Go back to Chiang Mai- November 2019. I had just left Bulgaria. I felt sad to leave, but visa rules and all that.

At that time my intention was to return to Bulgaria- either to get a long-term visa, OR to do half Bulgaria half Thailand.

Something changed though… I don’t know what it was.


I learned a lot more Thai. I went deeper into relationships there. My heart opened up. I found some Thai friends to go running with. I ate more Thai food. I partied. I got work done. I had such an incredible time.

When I returned to Phoenix, my intention was to still get back to Bulgaria as soon as my visa fixed itself.

One day, I went into a Thai restaurant. I spoke Thai. The waitress asked when I would return to Thailand, and I said… 1 month.

Did I lie? I don’t know. It just happened. I wasn’t sure to make of what I said.

At some point, I don’t know when, my heart started desiring Thailand more and more. Perhaps that could be the place where I could live longer-term, it thought? And by that, I mean 1 year commitment to start?

I’m feeling drawn there. It’s good there. And I don’t have to leave every 3 fucking months.

Visas are easy and affordable. They make sense. The visa-extension takes an hour at most, most of which is spent waiting. You don’t even need to speak with someone- as long as you provide the right documents, which is CLEARLY LISTED & WRITTEN IN ENGLISH, you can get a visa.

Compare that to Bulgaria, with one of the most confusing & unclear immigration systems. The rules are not clear. The rule is to not speak anything but Bulgarian- even to fellow EU passport holders.

At some point in my stay in Montreal, I wrote a super long blog post that I never published. It was left hidden, just for me. I might publish it later.

It was just me ranting about the ridiculousness of the immigration here, when compared to most other countries in the world. Of every nation I’ve been to, Bulgaria is very likely the hardest country to move to.

It would cost thousands of Euros, AND a flight to Chicago, + 1 month waiting, AND YET ANOTHER flight to Chicago.

No wonder Bulgaria is losing population – it’s near-impossible for non-EU members to move there!

Waiting for the Truth

I guess the way I could describe it is a sense of meaninglessness. Like, “what the fuck am I even doing here?”

If I’m being completely honest, I wanted to return to Chiang Mai first, but they have a 1-2 month burning season which is going on right now. This is when pollution gets bad due to wildfires + farmers burning their crops (among other reasons).

Of course, this feeling of dullness is amplified by my sleep deprivation & jet lag, which is taking a bit too long to pass.

That + culture shock is a recipe for bleh. Not to mention derping too long on video games fries the brain!

I “know myself,” so I’m gonna wait it out before I accurately assess the situation. I do truly appreciate my friends here, I just don’t feel good yet due to my travel fatigue.

That being said, I’ve calculated the cost of loss if I decide to leave Bulgaria early for Thailand.

It is manageable. So there is that chance that I might decide to leave early and go to Thailand.

I didn’t want to go anywhere new in 2020. But I still have to take care of my happiness, so I’ll go to a new city in Thailand until the burning season in the North passes.

While there are some legitimate downsides to Bulgaria that ignite this feeling, a big source of it is just the knowing that I must leave in May anyways. For yet another 3 months.

It’s not healthy to say “I’m not going to enjoy where I’m at because I’ll be going soon,” but if I really am internally seriously about living in Thailand, then it would indeed make more sense to rip this band-aid off now instead of letting myself meet some girls here, get new friends, and all that just to say good-bye when that time could be spent creating something that’ll stay at least a bit longer.

“Why Not Stay Right Here…?”

A couple weeks ago in Montreal I also had an interesting feeling: why not just move to Montreal?

I was enjoying it. Hanging out with an awesome group of international & diverse friends. Dating really cool girls.

Sure Montreal is cold, but people don’t let that stop them. People live life to the fullest there- go out, eat some food, drink cafe, hangout at the bar, go for a walk!

And… Immigration is likely easier. I don’t even know if I’d “have” to (it might be possible literally just to go and stay without much paperwork).

Also in Montreal I planned out the next year or so- I have a general plan with contingencies included for the rest of 2020.

It was good doing that, but I think I’ll add another contingency: the “stay where I’m at” contingency, where if I’m really liking a place, maybe I’ll just move there.

Things change quickly. When you only have 3 months to make friends, many don’t stay too attached when you’re gone for yet another 3 months. Even if I do.

So why not just stay where you’re at, and develop that further? I was seriously considering that in Montreal. I love those friends. They were incredible. I felt so good.

I’d say the experience of Montreal was 9/10, maybe even 10/10. And I want that clearly written for my own reference, in case I forget that.

Every time I go back, my same old awesome friends are there for me, and so are new friends & girls. It’s incredible. Things happen in Montreal. And it’s diverse!

My mentality is simplifying these days. Instead of analyzing so much, I’m trying to be in more of a productive, action-orientated mode. “Just go” or “just do XYZ” is more common of a thought nwo for me.

Why complicate it?

I would like to see what’s in Thailand, so I shall do that. And if that doesn’t work out, then I’ll likely move to Montreal.

Unless things suddenly change for Bulgaria, the prospect of me living here long-term is starting to dim out. Which makes me sad. Which makes me want to buy the next flight out and get it over with now, because goddamnit I have too many awesome friends here and I would truly enjoy living here for a year straight to go deep on it… But the fucking government..

It’s kind of funny. Bulgaria makes it so hard to immigrate, that now I’ve spent too much time in other places (Montreal & Thailand), so much so that they’re taking my heart away.

We’re gonna see where the wind takes me.

For now, I’m gonna try to sleep off this jet lag. It’s possible that I may feel better and suddenly I may be convinced this is my one and only place, worth fighting for. Or not.

A clear mind is needed to tell.

Goodnight.

-Michael

How Deadly is CoronaVirus?

Fear is setting all around the world as talk about the new CoronaVirus from Wuhan, China dominates the media.

The United States government is now quarantining anyone that enters the USA from the Wuhan area for a minimum period of 14 days.

With so much fear about the CoronaVirus, how deadly is it actually, and what is the threat to you?

Check out my awesome video on the subject right HERE.

This is a video I made for a client that I love working with, Wildlife x Team International.

I’ve been using the hype of Coronavirus to start making some related videos about it, and so far we’re getting hundreds of more views than normal. I hope it’ll turn into hundreds of thousands.

My goal is to dominate some search terms on YouTube, get a ton of views, and help promote the brand.

For example, I made a video about the “Mutants of Chernobyl” when the Chernobyl series was released on Netflix, which now sits at about 550,000 views on YouTube.

To find it you can just YouTube “Wildlife x Team Chernobyl.”

Now for my personal opinion, I’m quite shocked at all this Coronavirus hype.

It’s a perfect example of marketing. Everyone is afraid of Coronavirus because everyone else is afraid of coronavirus.

If you look into the numbers, it’s laughable. There are literally thousands of things 10x more likely to kill you (even in China) than Coronavirus, but yes, let’s all be afraid of Coronavirus. It’s ridiculous.

Are you afraid of Coronavirus? Without Googling, tell me: what is the fatality rate of the disease?

If you can’t answer that question, I do ask: why do you fear it? Why do you fear Coronavirus if you can’t even tell me the important #’s, like fatality rate?

The answer is that it’s groupthink. Coronavirus has too much media attention, so now everyone’s talking about it, and forgetting the true dangers right on our doorsteps (see: pollution, gun violence, normal flu strains, heart disease, cancer, rabies, allergies, so on and so forth).

My personal opinion is that all the media campaigns against China and coronavirus are nothing but anti-Chinese racism.

To many Europeans & Americans, China is still a distant, far, foreign land that is exotically different to what we’re familiar with.

The Media knows this, and so they’re leveraging this hyped-up story about some virus from a far-away land that has the “potential to create a global catastrophe.”

Again, if you actually look into the #’s (see: fatality rate, and which demographic it kills… hint: low fatality rate, and majority of deaths from ultra-aging already-dying elderly population that would’ve died by any flu that hit them), it becomes obvious that it’s nothing but hype.

But hey, it’s free, easy views for my clients, so minus well hop on the Coronavirus band-wagon and start milking the masses for their attention!

But seriously, on a personal level can we please stop the Anti-Chinese racism?

I’ve got good Chinese friends around the world and the way they’ve been treated as a result of the fear of CoronaVirus is ridiculous.

Racism has been reported in the UK, Germany, Thailand, and USA.

Even IF coronavirus was the ultra-killer, we shouldn’t be treating Chinese HUMANS like they’re some murderer.

At the end of the day, we’re all humans! The next anti-nation media brigade could be against YOUR country, so let’s be the change we want to see in the world and start treating everyone with respect, love, and kindness.

Anyways, a part of me doesn’t want to write this. A few people will probably un-subscribe, a few people will illogically stick to their guns about coronavirus being the “ultra-deadly killer-disease that will end the world.”

However, I HAD to write this. On behalf of my Chinese friends experiencing racism over a virus that isn’t even that special, and the anti-Chinese media campaigns that are attacking them.

At the end of the day though, the masses are the masses, so as long as this hype keeps continuing I’m gonna keep producing content about it to suck in more views, and hopefully educate people on the true dangers to their life.

Thanks for reading!

-Michael

Stop Learning!

I want to STOP learning. Yes, you read that right..

“The possession of Knowledge, unless accompanied by a manifestation and expression in Action, is like the hoarding of precious metals — a vain and foolish thing. Knowledge, like Wealth, is intended for Use. The Law of Use is Universal, and he who violates it suffers by reason of his conflict with natural forces.” — The Kybalion.

This quote, along with other writings in The Kybalion have painfully stuck with me for years.

The Kybalion is a book about the ancient Hermetic teachings that came out of Ancient Egypt.

It’s quite hard to understand, but once you “get it,” it’ll hit you deep. However, this last part is extremely clear, and applies to all facets of life.

Avoiding Learning… At Painful Costs

Today I had to drive from Phoenix to Tucson (and back), which was easily more than 4 hours.

I also went to another town 45 minutes from my town in the Phoenix area for a business event, and now I’m writing this at (yet another town) Arizona State University so I can rest & relax before driving some more.

I’ve spent A LOT of time driving. And what better use of that time than to listen to podcasts & content on how to better myself?

Wrong.

I could emotionally feel it. I wanted to, by instinct, turn on podcasts, self-help material, and learn, but I just couldn’t do it.

As fucking boring & awful as it was, I listened to one painful song after another, or even no music, as I drove hour after hour.

I did listen a bit to a business program that I had purchased, but I was re-listening to content I had learned before. Now I was re-listening so I could solidify it.

Needless to say, it was a boring trip, and most people would be perplexed as to why I didn’t turn on some self-help or business podcast to put that use to “good time!”

But WHY Avoid Learning?

I didn’t take that quote from the Kybalion seriously when I first read it. I was in a period of my life where I was growing fast, and that meant absorbing all kinds of information.

My first long road-trip from Nebraska to Arizona was filled with valuable self-help content, and one of the videos I listened to was so inspiring I permanently downloaded & backed it up so I can always have it.

Learning is necessary, up to a point. I won’t argue with that; the point of this post isn’t to say “never” learn, but instead to “stop learning once you’ve learned enough.”

There comes a time when you need to stop talking & take action. Otherwise, you get jammed on endless information-gathering, which eventually paralyzes you.

Right now I’ve taken more action, but I still have a ways to go to catch up with my knowledge level.

I “know” many things in the brain, but I don’t “know” them in the body because I haven’t applied them in reality.

I’ve been tortured for years about business and self-help information that I have not yet applied.

Once you’ve learned something, it’s impossible to sleep well until you apply it. I can’t think of anyone I know that learns how to succeed in business or with dating or this or that and can go to sleep calmly without putting it to action!

This is a dangerous habit to break: YouTube is one click away, begging to share more information.

Friends and entrepreneurial circles are constantly trying to share books, blogs, podcasts, authors, events, speakers, programs, etc…

Now, in reflection, I realize that I know quite a bit. When I apply things, my theories are either proven correct or adjusted to fit reality, but each day I apply things I can sleep a bit easier.

Stop Learning, Start Acting

I really like this blog’s description of the Kybalion quote, as well as his examples of Analysis Paralysis and the deeply negative effects it has.

The author writes about something called “Rapid Practical Integration,” which is a fancy way of saying that you should only research the next critical thing you need to accomplish.

For example, don’t research how to hire employees, unless you actually need to hire employees (I’m writing this to myself).

This applies for whatever you’re going for. Don’t research “how to meet women” unless you’ve actually tried to meet women and are experiencing a specific problem.

First, experiencing a SPECIFIC problem is MUCH easier to solve than a generic problem. Second, if you apply everything you learn in a program, you’ll have a foundation of reality to work from, instead of getting stuck in the brain.

All the time I hear absolutely ridiculous theories about social dynamics, travel, and business, and I know they’re ridiculous because of my extensive experience in the subjects (less so in business, but you get the point).

Base Yourself In Reality

In the end, life is meant to be lived, not thought of.

Do you really want to think about business, about fitness, about attracting that ideal partner?

Probably not.

So go get it! Go out and actually apply something, as that’s how you succeed!

You’ll have to ‘fail’ a bit at first, but that’s okay, because in the long-term you will succeed.

No More Learning!

That is why I’m avoiding learning, even when it seems obvious to do so. I simply see no more value in mindlessly “learning” more information.

All it will do is cause me more restless nights as I process the information and think of ways I can apply it.

In a world where you can be and do and learn anything, it’s important to stop entertaining the options at a certain point.

You need to take action. Bring ONE thing into reality, and if that isn’t satisfying, then go onto the next!

-Michael

My New Project: Curing Loneliness

Some of you may have noticed that I stopped writing about digital marketing- instead, it’s about loneliness and conversational skills. 

In today’s post I’d like to cover my new project, what it aims to do, my struggles with it, and my goals for it- publicly. 

I’m considering openly writing on a personal blog my progress with it, to inspire other entrepreneurs, and also hold myself accountable. 

Anyways, here’s everything about the project as well as my struggles. 

The Cure for Loneliness? 

The aim of my project is to “cure” loneliness. This means taking someone that feels 7/10 or greater loneliness, and bringing it down to 3/10 or less- permanently. 

Before I began this journey, I was focused on a lot of B2B (business to business) digital marketing. 

This is great and all, especially because I have one really awesome high-ticket client, but many clients are…. Ugh. Finding great clients takes work. 

In a couple instances I would launch Facebook Ads for clients, only for the clients to not call the leads I got them within a reasonable time frame (24 hours or less). 

Do you remember the ads you saw 5 days ago? I didn’t think so. Yet still these clients were angered that the leads didn’t immediately convert into paying customers after procrastinating on calling the leads despite my explicit orders to call them ASAP (I even setup a system that auto-emails them every phone # IMMEDIATELY). 

Ultimately I just wasn’t feeling too passionate about it, and I’ve known for a while that I’d rather do digital marketing for myself. I’ve developed some great skills, and many people can’t value that, or they have requirements I refuse to fill (ie. showing up at an office). 

I LOVE making Facebook Ads, and it’s something I could easily do for clients that were giving legitimate value to their prospects. However finding great clients like that that also didn’t have a great marketing team already proved difficult. 

I enrolled in a business program, Sam Ovens Consulting Accelerator and it’s taught me a lot. It’s also helped me redefine how I can help people. 

One of the exercises was to ask many of your friends what your strengths & weaknesses are. 

It became apparent to me that most people valued my social skills, which is NOT something that I was born with- I worked hard to develop exceptional social skills. 

I then sought to define what problems teaching my skills would help, and at first I thought it would involve something like teaching how to pick up girls or something, but then I went even deeper: 

“What problem are those guys struggling with?” Loneliness. 

I created a research form, which got nearly 1,500+ responses overnight with little promotion. 

Boom, the project was validated. 

Now the goal of the program is to “cure” feelings of loneliness by addressing the main causes such as: 

  • Logistical skills (ie. learning how to leverage social circles, find groups, etc.) 
  • Self-esteem (increasing confidence, taking action) 
  • Conversational Skills
  • Authenticity (you’ll feel lonely if you aren’t being authentic/purposeful in your life) 

Very quickly I got the first client for the program, and the next person I helped gave me an exceptional video testimonial. 

How the Program Helps People

By addressing the 4 causes listed above, people will naturally stop feeling lonely. 

This is something I’ve done in my own personal life, and something I’ve helped friends & acquaintances with naturally, without asking for payment. 

Right now it involves 12 weeks of 1 on 1 coaching, however I’m finding this to be much more emotionally taxing and exhausting than I had anticipated. Adhering to a stricter schedule is a bit difficult too. 

I knew since the beginning I wanted to create an online version of the program- it’s easier for me, my clients, and everyone involved. They can get a lot of advice quickly, whenever they want, without having to show up to a call. 

The program will also involve group coaching and an online platform, all aimed at helping people to feel connected, purposeful, and authentic. 

Problems & Struggles

Every path in life has its problems, and this path is not unique. This new venture has brought with it some unique problems I had not faced before. 

Calling prospects and people interested in the program is time-intensive, and not yielding the best ROI that I would’ve liked, when considering that I’m also putting in the work to organically get the prospects. 

The program outline is great, but I’ll also have to sit down and spend weeks (or months) recording the online program, worksheets, and other tools necessary. 

I had a virtual assistant that didn’t perform so well, and claimed to work a lot more hours than he possibly could’ve worked considering his result output was ridiculously low. 

Promotion & Testing

The biggest struggle is in promoting & testing the program. I’ve already validated the offer both in terms of form engagement and buying prospects, but now I’d like to validate the online version of the program. 

I’d also like to remove myself from the buying equation, and allow people to purchase via a sales page or webinar instead of having to call with me. This is the only way I can scale up and help more people in the process. 

I’ve struggled with defining how exactly I should promote. Some methods are obvious, like: 

  • Creating YouTube videos (which I’ll do) 
  • Creating FB videos (upload YT to FB as well)
  • Posting on FB, and add friends in mental health support groups to funnel them in
  • Email list, except for writing about this topic
  • Blog / SEO 

However, most of these things are long-term, and harder to quantify. They’re HIGHLY effective, especially SEO & YouTube videos (and then engaging the Email list once it’s built), just now short-term. 

I’d like to find something shorter-medium-term, and I know just what it is, but there leads to the next problem. 

Facebook Ads & Testing Ads

I know I can create great Facebook Ads. Naturally that’s what I want to do, but first I must create the initial offer. 

That’s left me locked, as there are a couple different strategies I could go about doing, all of which are great (but what’s most effective)? 

I’m also trying to figure out the most cost-effective method to test the ads. Herein lies the problem: 

My program is extremely valuable, and I know it helps people. I’m also putting in a TON of time & effort into creating it, and offering other things such as group coaching calls. I intend to price the program to at least $1k, but very likely much more. 

If I run ads for a $1k program, I MUST have a larger ad budget to test. 

For example, I can spend $900 to make 1 sale because that profits me $100. However, I don’t know which ads will work, therefore I’ll have to spend $2,000+ to test in ads, and I might not make anything back. 

There’s a lot of risk involved when testing ads for a high-ticket offer, and I don’t have thousands upon thousands to throw around. 

The SECOND option is to create a low-ticket offer, for example $50 small-version of the program. It could be like the basic fundamentals, or “9 epic conversational tricks.” 

While this program wouldn’t be as profitable, it would more quickly allow me to build an Email list, YouTube channel, and other followings. Why? 

Let’s say I have that $50 offer. I can test with $200 on ads on Facebook, and if I don’t make any money back, that’s totally okay- I only lost $200, so I can refine the offer and then test another $200, repeat until success. 

Do you see the problem here? The $1,000+ offer makes me profit big-time, and it is the true value of the full-scale program, however I do NOT have the budget to test a high-ticket offer with ads, only a small-ticket offer. 

Also, the low-ticket offer would NOT have the goal of making a profit. My goal would be to spend $50 to make $50, thus building an Email list of people that are interested in improving their lives and willing to improve. 

THEN via Email marketing I would sell them on the high-ticket program. 

If I try to sell simply the high-ticket offer, I will likely have to use organic methods to promote it, and if I sell the low-ticket offer, I can use ads (which I’m better at), but then I’ll have to create a longer, more complicated sales cycle to make profit later. 

Long-Term Sustainability 

Another thing that’s been on my mind is whether I should sell the high-ticket program, or create a subscription product on the low-end that offers long-term support. 

For example, create an online program that has continuous video updates for $37 per month. 

This creates long-term revenue streams, as people stay engaged in the course and continuously improving their lives. It also allows me to help more people because more people can join. 

Some course creators such as Mark Manson price their exclusive blog posts + programs as low as $6 per month… BUT it adds up SIGNIFICANTLY when you consider just how many people are subscribed to him! 

I don’t always read his premium posts, and I’ve only gone through one of his courses (the long-term travel one, several years ago), yet I remain subscribed to his program because “it’s only $6 per month.” 

Pick One… or All? 

There are 3 main ideas in my mind with program pricing: 

  • #1 A single high-ticket ($1k+) offer 
  • #2 A low-ticket offer ($50-ish), combined with a high-ticket offer (via Email marketing) 
  • #3 An affordable subscription product ($37 per month or less).

#1 is profitable, probably sustainable for several years, forces people to commit to their improvement, BUT I won’t be able to run ads for it just yet (need to close more deals to reinvest in ads). 

#2 is more work, but allows me to run ads ASAP, which is my forte. However, to make real profit I’ll have to wait longer, and spend more time working on a long-term sales cycle. 

#3 is a proven, sustainable model for long-term success. However, profit will come slower, ads may not initially be profitable, and the cheaper pricing may contaminate the program (in the sense that non-action takers will join then complain about not getting improvements, as the price point isn’t enough to kick them into action). 

Business Mastermind 

I’m not a genius. I’m sharing this publicly to get some feedback on your thoughts on this. 

My goal is to maximize value to customers, change the world, and cure loneliness. I also want to make sure that I create abundance for myself and those involved in the project long-term. 

Of course there will be iterations for down the line, but for getting moving right now… Do you have any thoughts on what’s best? 

If you’re doing any personal development or entrepreneurial stuff, then also hit “reply.” 

I’d like to create a mastermind of people committed to changing the world, improving, and growing a successful business. I’d like we all grow together, so reach out to me if you’re interested in growing (and more importantly, contributing, as we must all give to help each other). 

Excitement & Accountability 

At any rate, I feel very excited. This path is my “true path,” and I’ve known it for a long time. 

I’m writing this in Montreal, Canada. I remember 2.5 years ago at the cafe down the street I was talking to my friend about creating an online course for his art business. 

I was talking too much, but afraid to do what I really wanted. I had created an online store, but turned off the ads too soon (I even made a little profit from some ads!). 

B2B was never for me long-term, at least in the way that I’ve been doing it. Working for clients is great for providing for yourself but it doesn’t give you long-term freedom (unless you’re willing to improve your methods, which I was unwilling to because I knew in my heart THIS path was for me… Maybe it’s for you). 

I’ve always wanted to sell B2C (business to consumer) online, whether it be via a store selling funny T-Shirts (which was a side-hustle I did 2.5 years ago, make some profit, but gave up too soon due to losing money for a hospital visit). 

Now I’m on that path. 

I’m sharing this so ya’ll can hold me accountable to this path. Right after I write this post, I’m deleting all video games… Normally they’re deleted, but since returning to Phoenix I had re-downloaded some. 

Lesson learned (yet again): video games, for me, are an immense, soul-sucking distraction! 

This project is much more fulfilling, I feel better after a day of work than after a day of gaming. 

So, hold me accountable and make sure I change the world. Join my mastermind if you’re on a similar path, and let’s upgrade our lives together (while helping others and providing real value to the world). 

Have a great day, and keep crushing it in your own path. 

Thanks, 

-Michael 

2020 Plans & Life Thoughts

Hey! Welcome to 2020 and the new decade. In today’s post I’ll be sharing my 2020 travel plans with friends, what’s been on my mind, and what I’ve been working on.

I haven’t been writing so much recently as I’ve just been enjoying life or focused on other projects. Some of you may have noticed that I started posting things related to “loneliness,” as one of my projects is now to improve symptoms of loneliness for others.

However, I may consider writing more. Something really interesting happened recently.

A couple weeks ago I flew from Phoenix to Montreal (more on that later). On the plane to Montreal from Washington D.C., I received an interesting text on my messenger from an unknown contact.

A woman had found my blog, gotten really inspired, and received a ton of benefit from my writing about Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, psychosomatic pain, Dr. John Sarno, and Dr. Steve Ozanich.

I do NOT publish or edit my posts to Google, meaning that they are not SEO-optimized. For you non-tech folk, that means that typically my posts don’t show on Google search, not because I block it but because I don’t put in the extra work to make it show.

What’s funny is that this woman LIVED IN MONTREAL! I responded to her text telling her I was on a flight LITERALLY THEN to Montreal.

We ended up meeting up for a quick healthy smoothie between our busy schedules. It was a ton of fun.

Apparently, I have “online fans.” Not many. But some.

It was really strange meeting a “fan” of my content. Well, I wouldn’t call her a fan- she’s a friend, now.

All the years of writing have been primarily for me and my friends. I’ve always published posts publicly just because I like that, and because perhaps some day in the future I’d optimize them to show on Google.

It’s a great reminder of just how fulfilling it is to CREATE things. I’ve been hella addicted to YouTube, social media, video games, and other distractions recently.

While indulging in some pleasure is fine, it’s not what makes anyone fulfilled long-term.

Creating- whether it be through your work, helping others, writing blog posts, creating videos, etc. is deeply fulfilling.

I may be more seriously writing, especially with my new business projects. I am re-inspired to revisit some of the things that I actually wanted to do in business, but got side-tracked from.

Now I’m going through Sam Ovens “Consulting Accelerator” course, which I highly recommend, however I don’t see myself going through that process exactly long-term.

Consulting one on one with people is a bit emotionally taxing for me, and to be quite honest timing & schedules aren’t my forte. I’m working on improving that, but with other business models available, I can’t imagine that being a long-term project.

For now I’m choosing to “put my hands in the mud” by working directly with people so I can better understand them before I create online programs…

Having someone randomly find me and message me on the exact day I was flying to her city is really fascinating, and I was SO joyed that my post could help someone and guide them on their path.

If you’re curious about the post she found, it was THIS ONE. If you Google “cptsd tms sarno” my post is #1 on Google! It’s quite impressive considering I never did any optimization!

If there’s anything that I’ve learned about work, it’s that it pays compound interest. In fact, Einstein was famously quoted saying something about compound interest.

Compound interest allows for an exponential growth curve.

For example, pretend that your income is $1 per month, and it doubles every month.

Doesn’t sound like a great idea, right? Wrong. I’d take that deal. Here’s why:

For the first year, you wouldn’t make hardly anything. You’d make $1, $2, $4, $8, $16, $32, $64, $128, $256, $512, $1024, $2,048.

That’s a grand total of $4,095 in year 1.

BUT… In year 2… Well, I probably don’t have to write it out. Month 1 of year 2 and you make $4,096, the next month over $8k, and so on it grows to insane proportions.

This is exactly what happens when you’re pursuing ANYTHING in life.

The first period of time (not necessarily year) SUCKS. You put in a TON of energy, and get very little returns.

However at a certain point it just EXPLODES. This is why we see people become “overnight millionaires.” It’s because they’ve been scraping by for the first year, but in year 2 they blow up because suddenly their skill goes up.

That is compound interest, and you will reap great benefits by committing to anything (ie. your YouTube channel will follow a similar pattern, skill in piano player, so on and so forth).

I wrote that post March 19, 2018. Here we are, almost 2 years later, and I am receiving “interest” on the very simple investment of writing a single post!

It’s a super inspiring fact to realize that your posts stay there forever, and they build up traction.

It makes me feel excited & re-inspired to keep pursuing business, as the initial period is very difficult.

I had mentioned that I’d like to get into “another form of business.” That’s something that I’m highly planning in 2020.

I’d like to start making online courses or creating online products. I know in my heart it’s what I want to do.

For now I’m doing 1 on 1 coaching and other stuff like that to get more experience in the fields that I’m working in, but after that I’d like to create online courses.

You can help more people, grow the business easier, etc. It’s simply something I’d like to do!

When I first started in business, I was much more creative & expansive. I would try anything. At one point I sold a knife to a guy in Israel, and then some funny cat shirts.

Eventually I got side-tracked with taking care of my health, focusing on relationships, girls, and other stuff like that.

It’s all good- now it’s just time to revisit priorities, which brings me to the 2020 plan. And, why I’m planning more.

Why I Went To Montreal

Now I’m in Montreal, Canada. I was feeling foggy, distracted, and sad in Phoenix. I realize that Phoenix may not be the city for me, or at least the setup that I have there.

The family home is SUPER far away from all social things, so I have to drive a LONG time to get anywhere. I’d estimate I was spending at least a couple hours per day in traffic in Phoenix, just for minimal amounts of fun social time.

Also, Phoenix just doesn’t seem to be a social city. The population of the greater Phoenix area is something like 10 million people. The weather is perfect. Yet the “party streets” are completely dead! The fuck?

I’ve got a business trip to Texas, and before that I decided to go to Montreal for a couple weeks despite it being freezing cold (think: -10C).

It’s been amazing. It’s bloody cold, the population is like 1 million, yet STILL this is a MORE SOCIAL CITY on Tuesday fucking night than Phoenix (with great weather and more population) on a Friday night.

Suburban America is disgusting. I’m not saying the USA as a whole sucks, just that the suburbs bloody suck.

It’s filthy: sure you get a big home, but at what cost? Congrats, you get to be all alone in the middle of a ton of other homes that look exactly like yours, spend hours of your life in a car, pay for a car, ugh.

I’m not one of those people that ignorantly shouts “I’d rather live in a 3-world country than be in the suburbs.” I’ve ALREADY LIVED in VERY 3rd-worldly places, and let me tell you, they’re 10x better that the disgusting American suburbs and the countless hours of your life that you waste in traffic.

One day I’d be curious to check out downtown San Diego (motorcycle-friendly), Boston (walkable), or New York (also walkable).

For now, I’m perfectly content abroad. I have no intentions to spend a significant amount of time in Phoenix ever again.

The mistake I made before traveling back to Phoenix (to visit family for the holidays) was not buying a ticket out BEFORE I got there.

I fell back into a depressing routine, felt sad/unclear, and lost time… And then because I lost time the timing of how I would’ve ideally liked things to go was thrown off, setting 2020 off to a weird start for me.

Anyways, it’s all good.

I’m in Montreal, much happier, living it up, and I’ve got some exciting plans for 2020. Lesson learned? The suburbs suck 1,000x more than you could ever imagine. Please, don’t go to the American suburbs. It’s not a dream: it’s a fucking nightmare of loneliness & road rage.

Official 2020 Travel Plans

Now I’m in Montreal. In a few days, I’ll go Texas on business. After that I’ll be back in Phoenix for just a week.

After that, I’m headed to Amsterdam on February 16. I’ll be there for two days.

On February 18 afternoon I’ll arrive back in Sofia, Bulgaria.

In May 2020 (after my visa expires for Bulgaria) I’ll visit Bangkok, then move to Chiang Mai.

During my stay in Chiang Mai I will take a visit to Da Nang, Vietnam and scope it out as a potential place to live.

If I love Bulgaria, I’ll go back to Bulgaria for a 3-month stay (or move permanently and go through all the crazy bullshit visa stuff this country requires).

If I love Thailand, I’ll stay there. If I love Da Nang, I’ll move there.

Otherwise, I’ll just continue half Bulgaria half Thailand. And if I’m jaded to everything, well fuck it I’m moving to Montreal permanently then.

It is my goal to get a “main base” in 2020, and by “main base,” I mean “home for 1 year.”

I’ve completely mapped out my travel plan, if/then flows, as well as contingency plans in case unexpected situations, feelings, or thoughts arise.

It feels great having a clear-cut if/then plan that extends all the way into the beginning of 2021.

I have learned in this last visit to North America just how much jet lag + sad environments can mess with your head. As soon as you lose direction and get a foggy brain, it becomes very hard to find direction again.

This plan gives me a path, and I won’t deviate from the plan unless there is substantial, overwhelming evidence that doing so would be significantly greater in terms of pleasure than sticking to the plan (short-term and long-term).

I’ve literally mapped out contingencies for things small like feeling cloudy/sad, and bigger things like losing all my money, business failure, disaster, war, death of a loved one, and other extreme situations.

Those things (ie. War, lol) are unlikely to happen, but I feel great to finally have a plan. My plan will always extend minimum 6 months out from current time period, and ideally up to a year.

Why I’m Obsessively Planning

I’m finding that life is much easier to plan in 3-6 month bursts (up to a year) than by the day, or by doing the ridiculous “10-year plan” that school requires you to do (according to my high school 10-year plan I’d still be studying in Omaha, now I’ve been to around 15 countries, lol).

To most people planning for contingencies as best you can might be a bit extreme, but I’ve lived without a plan for too long and I always felt best when I had some sort of plan.

It’s much easier to ask the heart “what do you want in 3 months” than “what do you want now,” because the heart can want all kinds of things now, but that doesn’t mean you can have it all now.

Across a greater time period, you’re able to manifest more!

I want to scope out Chiang Mai as a place to live, and also give Vietnam another chance. Now my heart gets it all, in an order that makes logical sense.

Also, my biggest financial cost was always losing money because I was acting too short-term without long-term thinking.

For example, in 2018 I lost a ton when I had to leave Bulgaria due to my visa expiring. I became a mess and didn’t create a plan for what to do in the meantime, instead I opted to “wing it.”

Of course, I ended up losing a ton, feeling awfully stressed, and burning out! I had no plan to survive it! The cost would’ve been SO much less had I mapped out a plan of action beforehand.

This plan ensures flights get bought far in advance, and I have a clear value system in case different situations arise. I even have a “what if I fall in love” contingency…

I feel much more relaxed knowing I’ve got a plan I feel good about, and I encourage you to do the same. Now I can see how work fits into the plan, social life, dating, and a clear value system to weigh decisions.

One of the ways that people struggle with decision-making is that they don’t have a clear value-system or proper goals to make the decision!

Two paths may be equally “good” objectively speaking, but subjectively there is often a certain path which is more in line with your values or what you actually want.

Humbly Observing Growth + Reflection

It’s cool to see how far I’ve come, as well as many of my friends, and society at large.

I remember in a piano class waiting for my brother to finish. I was fascinated with the “Gameboy.” Tetris was so cool!

Here I am, a decade later, typing away on my GS65 Stealth (9th gen Core i7-9750H), 16GB RAM (DDR4), 144hz screen, and other fancy epic tech stuff.

This is tech-way of saying “a really, really powerful laptop.”

Sometimes I would feel annoyed that something wouldn’t react lightning-fast. Or get frustrated because I lost a match.

However, I am humbled by these memories that I have. I hope I never lose them for as long as I live.

There was a time that I was a lost kid. I wouldn’t say I’ve got things exactly figured out now, but I’ve got a much better concept of reality, and society as a whole has made incredible products widely available at an exceptional price.

Do you remember being a kid, and having to call to schedule meetings? And everyone had to be on time, as there was no way to contact each other otherwise?

Or perhaps you were like me, and sometimes you had to go to someone’s doorstep, ring their doorbell, and wait to see if they want to “play” by asking in person?

Now I swipe right on Tinder, send a few texts, or whatever… The difference is astonishing.

We’ve progressed really fast in the past decade, yet still with the “fast pace” of technology we still adjust faster than we could ever imagine!

Maintaining Awe & Wonder

So I think it’s important to maintain that sense of awe & wonder at the world. Did I feel that way because I was a kid, or because the word “technology” was a new concept to me?

It doesn’t matter! We must not let our egos & minds get in the way of this beautiful dance of life!

I’d like to keep my mind clear, and keep that sense of awe that comes with the beauty of the world!

I casually write this in Montreal, knowing in a week’s time I will complete a business trip in Texas and then visit Phoenix. And a week later, I’ll be in the Netherlands and then Sofia.

Such a life I couldn’t imagine as a kid, yet here it is now, for me, so normal.

Just gratitude.

Have an awesome day. What’s up with you?

-Michael