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Something happened in 2003 that changed our lives forever.
My wife, Kim, and I have been in the home-based business industry for 18 years (actually, combined 38 years as she got started 2 years before me).
Many of those years were incredibly profitable; with up to six and seven figure incomes. We were living the “lifestyle” in our early thirties; we had four beautiful little girls, a big house in San Diego, luxury vehicles and we traveled like rock stars.
It was awesome for us…but unfortunately not for our bank accounts. The more money we made, the more we spent. Kim and I were living WAY above our means, and we quickly learned that success doesn’t always last forever.
As the result of some bad business decisions, our income was disappearing like quicksand. This eventually led to what we remember as “The Crash of 2003”. That, of course, was the year we went broke.
A few days before Christmas, we heard a loud crash in our driveway. My heart sank into my chest knowing what it was. I remember the following moments in slow motion… I felt a tug at my shirt; it was my oldest daughter, who was only four-years-old at the time. I looked into her eyes as she asked,
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That day, both of our cars were repossessed. Not only were our children anxiously anticipating presents from Santa (that we didn’t have any money for), we had no car and we were inches away from losing everything.
We had to come to grips with the truth; some serious changes needed to take place. Realizing this, my wife spoke the words I never thought she would say: “Tom, you need to get a real job.”
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Wow, that hurt. I had never had a “real” job. From the time I was a teenager, finding ways to make money was easy; mowing lawns, waiting tables, starting a recycling company in college, etc. That was IT. I didn’t know how to fill out a resume to save my life…I didn’t even know how to spell “resume”.
At this point, there was one thought running through my brain:
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I had to do something…anything and anywhere. Over the next year, I ended up in Temecula, CA selling landscape aeration door-to-door. Ever heard of Temecula, CA? During the summer, it never cools off. I was working ten hour days in 120-degree heat.
One of the most humbling moments of my life happened during this period when I knocked on the door of a guy who was making six-figures in my last company. I had personally recruited him.
He opened the door, scrunched up his face and said, “Tom? What in the world are you doing? You’re on my doorstep with an aeration tee shirt on! Is this a joke?” Embarrassed, I started making excuses, saying “Well, I’m just trying this thing out part time.” Obviously, that wasn’t true. I was totally broke and desperate to make ends meet. I had given up on the home-based business industry…and here was this guy, completely thriving off of it.
How did I go from making millions in the home business industry to being completely burned out…tired…depressed…afraid…broke… and worst of all, door-knocking?
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The result? It was sucking my life away.
I had no life away from my business. I had been trained to believe that in order to make it BIG, I needed to work 7 days a week, recruit – recruit – recruit, do all the training, all the conference calls, set up all the advertising, take every call and every email from new recruits any time of day or night, and my family, my health and my hobbies were my second priority. Only after I became financially independent could I work less and enjoy life.
Basically, I was running five or six companies. I was the focus of everything. I had made the business and everyone’s success depend upon ME.
I used to sit up at three and four in the morning, stressed out, thinking about all the new people who got into my business that week. I felt like I was responsible for their success. I got caught in this trap as a leader; I thought the definition of a leader was “DO EVERYTHING”. If you are a leader, you probably know what I am talking about.
If you are new to this industry, I want to show you some things to AVOID so you can enjoy life and be unusually successful… without feeling like you have to sell your life to your business.
In January 2004, I was exposed to the truth.
I learned that it was possible to have a life and make money. I learned that it was possible to build a wildly successful business with a system that wasn’t predicated on me training absolutely everyone I enrolled. I learned for the first time how to take the spotlight off me and simply outsource, so all I had to do was focus on one simple, productive, money-making task each day…RECRUIT.
This knowledge helped me enroll 500 representatives into my business within the following twelve months. In fact, that next year we earned over $211,000. We became the #1 income earners of our company in record time; meanwhile, our 500 reps turned into 40,000. Following our example, many of those individuals also became top income earners.
If this was possible for us, can this be a reality for you, too?
Stay tuned. In blogs to come, I will share the keys that took us from losing everything to earning more than $500,000 within 24 months. But most importantly, I will show you how you can duplicate this system and make it work for you, too.
God bless you and your business,