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In part I of this series I told the story of getting up on stage for my first ever live stand-up comedy show…

In this installment of “What I learned from doing scary sh*t”… I’m going to share with you the lessons I learned from volunteering to get punched in the face (and how you can use them in YOUR business).

So…

How does one go from the relaxed, silly, and nonchalant world of comedy (and booze) to the savagery of unarmed combat?

Great question…

And… I have no clue.

It’s hard to describe what drew me to that very first Muay-Thai class (if you’re unfamiliar with this martial art… think kick-boxing then add knees and elbows to the mix)

I just remember bouncing back from a brutal 8-month long rehab battle after knee-surgery (Sowed my ACL back in place after they took a chunk of hamstring from the same leg) and looking for something “challenging” to do physically…

Soccer was out of the picture for now after blowing my knee to smithereens earlier.

One day a good friend of mine invited me to check out his gym… a traditional Muay-Thai School (similar to the old school “Dojo”) run by a real martial arts master who had fought dozens of times in Thailand and North America as a professional…

Now…

This wasn’t some dude who can channel “Chi” and then zonk you with lightning bolts from 20 feet away…

This guy was the real deal… with the scars and slight stutter to show for it.

“It’s one of the toughest workouts you’ll ever do in your life… and those guys will whip you into shape guaranteed” my buddy said…

Now I was already a big fan of the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) but never did any Mixed Martial Arts training…

I bit the bullet and signed up… and got hooked.

The camaraderie in those classes couldn’t be replicated in any regular gym – there’s something magical about dozens of men and women kicking n’ punching the stress away and melting the extra weight off in the small confines of a traditional martial arts sanctuary.

During those moments…

The last thing I expected in my entire life was that I will jump over a set of ropes and duke it out with a more experienced guy inside of a real life ring within one year of signing up.

Again… it was that darn quest to “do scary sh*t to discover myself” taking over the controls inside my brain’s situation room.

But hey, my desire to get my bell rung has unearthed priceless business lessons for you… dear biz-owner.

Anyway…

Within 10 months of training consistently I earned the “intermediate” level belt after a grueling mental and physical test lasting 3 long hours – where I came close to puking my guts out, almost blacked-out twice, prayed to several gods, cursed my entire existence, and wondered what the hell was wrong with me to do this to myself.

After I passed… the Kru (teacher in Thai) approached me and said “Hey Max… You should take a fight to test yourself for real”…

Now…

In marketing we talk a lot about the crossroads – the moment where your prospect has two roads ahead of them and must make a choice as to whether they will stay in the slow-lane or slide over to the glorious fast lane towards a more fulfilling life…

I was at the damn crossroads now…

Do I refuse his offer and stick to this as a fun fitness pursuit (and feel like crap after for “letting him down”) ?

Or…

Do I buck-up, walk the talk and “do scary sh*t to discover myself” ?

Safe to say… being rational wasn’t my strong suit at the time.

Three months later… I’m making my “walk” to the ring to the tune of drunken cheers from a blood-thirsty (yet relatively civilized) crowd…

The guy standing across from me was a lot more experienced – it was a staple at this gym to throw the new guys to the wolves… an old school method they believed brings out your true grit (whether you wanted to or not)…

The ref went over the rules real quick… checked our equipment…and signaled us back to our corners.

“There you go Max… you did it again. You got yourself in a gnarly situation. You happy now?” I thought to myself…

Didn’t matter… It was go time and I had to survive this thing without completely embarrassing my entire gym – you NEVER want to embarrass your gym when squaring off against someone from another school. It’s worse than getting caught taking goofy selfies at a funeral.

It was dead quiet… the lights were bright… the timer chimed as it was set for 3 rounds of 3 minutes… and the world eerily disappeared into the ether of my peripheral vision as I couldn’t see or hear anything except the fella in front of me…

“Fight!” yelled the ref… we touched gloves and met dead center of the ring. He threw the first jab…

Here’s what I learned after surviving my first 9 minutes of unarmed combat in the controlled environment of a boxing ring and…

How It Can Boost Sales In YOUR Business

1. You’ll get knocked down… a lot. You’ve just got to get right back up and start swinging again

This guy was a nightmare to go against…

He had figured out my go-to combination early – a jab-cross to the head and left hook to the body finishing up with a right body kick – and made me pay for it…

He was able to anticipate the last kick… then catch my leg before it hit em’… and sweep my other standing leg right from under me (This technique is called the “sweep” and it is considered humiliating for the guy on the ground because your opponent gets to stand on top of you and taunt you as the ref stops the fight till you’re back up on your feet)

He must have done this to me three or four times till I realized I’ve got to stop kicking this dude and try something else.

As soon as I switched it up… I was able to throw him off and land some shots of my own.

The same applies to your business…

You probably have a “repertoire” of go-to combinations in your sales and marketing toolbox…

However, there will be prospects who simply won’t budge with what you’re currently doing… Or the methods you’re using become outdated in a constantly changing digital landscape.

This isn’t the time to stay down and out…

Take it as a sign to go back to the drawing board and pump some new creativity into your marketing process…

Come back with a fresh “combination” and snag those sales with a new effort from a different angle.

2. The tragic scenarios running through your mind are 99% fiction

The days leading up to the fight were the worst…

I had pictured my demise in so many ridiculous ways it was starting to sound funny to me…

At one point I thought “What If my corner accidentally spills water… I step in it and get my feet wet… then throw a kick and end up on my ass outside of the ring as the crowd howls in hysterical laughter”

Yes… you name it, I thought it.

Death, paralysis, losing an eye ball, speech impediments, memory loss, and turning into a brainless stuttering zombie were all on the list.

Our minds are so good at this…

So…

What did happen in the end?

Apart from some sore muscles, a couple of bruises here and there, and a throbbing head every once in a while… I was brand spankin’ new by Tuesday (We fought Saturday).

Once again… This applies to your business and sales as well.

How many times have you thought about pulling the trigger on a marketing or sales effort yet backed off at the last minute because of all the “what ifs”?

Many times I bet… So have I. This was the whole point of me doing this entire damn fight thing in the first place…

I wanted to prove my own brain wrong in a way…

Remember… most of the “what if” scenarios running through your head are simply that – scenarios and stories.

I could have had a lot more fun had I just focused on enjoying the moment for what it is as opposed to freaking out about the awful things that could happen…

Don’t let your what ifs” stop you from growing your sales and your business.

As Shannon “The Cannon” Briggs would say… “Let’s go CHAMP!!”

3. In the end… it’s just you in there. Learn to be cool with “you”

Being an entrepreneur or solo biz-owner can be a lonely affair at times…

Same thing inside the ring.

Sure… your corner has your back, however… you’re the one who has to do battle.

Your circle of support (your mentors, partners, and affiliates) also have your back.

But…

You have to motivate yourself to pick-up the phone and reach out or bring your ideas to life in the physical world…

You’re the mover and shaker in your business… without you taking action the whole thing falls apart.

Which brings me to my next point…

Get to know and learn to enjoy “you”… the whole spectrum… the good stuff and the bad.

Because it is you who makes or breaks your business… no body else.

4. You’re stronger and more capable than you think

I couldn’t believe I had just went toe-to-toe with a trained martial artist with more experience for three rounds and lived to tell the tale…

It felt like waking up and remembering bits and pieces of a bizarre dream… 

Had you asked me a year before I started training If I’d end up doing something like this I would have said “you’re out of your mind man… let’s get a beer instead!”

As entrepreneurs and biz-owners… we captain our own ships. It can be tough convincing yourself you can do so much more… especially when things aren’t exactly going according to plan.

However, Our subconscious (where the magic is stored) kicks into high-gear when we finally take the “scary” action and jump right into the fire…

And lo and behold a minute or two later you’re handling youself just fine… even enjoying the whole thing!

5. Every single one of us needs a coach in their corner

I would have NEVER done this without my teacher and my corner… and for this I’m eternally grateful to them.

They gifted me with something money can never buy…

That night… I got a glimpse into what I’m really made of. I was ecstatic to learn I had the grit to keep trying until the finish line is in sight.

My biggest fear on the night was discovering the painful idea that I would quit or give up…

My teacher and my corner made sure this wasn’t happening…

The same applies to you…

Every entrepreneur, biz-owner, or freelancer must have a trusted “coach” in their corner… course correcting for them and urging them on…

No one reaches the top tiers of success without expert help and assistance from capable hands and minds…

So…

Invest in the evolution of your business and a new explosion in your sales by bringing in your very own corner crew for your next project!

 

And while you’re here…  I’d love to be your cornerman!

Let’s take your marketing and sales to the next level…