Ready to Find Your Calling?
Sign Up Now to Get Your FREE
Changing Course Newsletter!

Chocolate, woodworking & romance oh my!


15+ Cool Places to Plug Into Your Tribe, Learn How to Really Make Money Doing What You Love, and Partner With Kindred Spirits Who Share Your Passion

In 2015 there will be literally hundreds of thousands of conferences happening all over the world on topics related to just about every interest imaginable – yours among them.

That’s why I decided to shelve the standard holiday greeting and instead take this week to turn you on to 15 cool events that just might change your life.

For example, if you’ve ever fancied yourself a romance writer but just aren’t sure where to begin, a conference can be the perfect way to find your tribe and learn at the same time.

coupleThere are dozens of conferences for or featuring romance writers including the upcoming Georgia Romance Writers, California Dreamin’, and Ottawa’s Romancing the Capital conferences.

Find Your Tribe and Learn at the Same Time

At the California event you can attend dozens of talks and workshops on topics like creating realistic historical heroines, the eight hero/heroine archetypes, how to write sizzling scenes, creating audio books, time management for writers, and finding a publisher.

Romance not your thing?

Then how about dogs, athletics or fitness, using horses to heal humans, beading, African American music, blogging/podcasting/web TV, historical woodworking, Latinos online, chocolate, selling on eBay or Amazon, or countless passions?

You don’t have to already be actively working in a given field to attend a conference. If you train dogs or think you’d like to then check out the Association of Professional Dog Trainers convention in Dallas.

beadsIf you make beads or think you’d like to there’s the International Society of Glass Bead Makers conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Or for a far more international experience head to The Borneo International Bead conference in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia.

Do you dream of becoming a successful blogger, podcaster or web TV content creator? Then check out the 2015 NMX event (formerly known as Blog World) in Las Vegas.

Want to become a successful blogger, podcaster or web TV and tap into your Latino tribe at the same time?

Hispanicize, whose companies include Latina Mom Bloggers network, Being Latino, Hispanicize Wire, and the Hispanic PR Blog is putting on their 6th annual Hispanicize Week 2015 in Miami.

Billed as “the iconic, largest annual event for Latino trendsetters and newsmakers in journalism, blogging, marketing, entertainment and tech entrepreneurship,” the organizers expect to draw more than 2,100 of the nation’s most influential Latino professionals from the industries of blogging, journalism, music, marketing, film and business over the five days.

horseLots of horse lovers have long been fascinated by programs that use horses to help disabled children, veterans and others suffering from post-traumatic stress, and others to learn, heal, and grow.

If you’re one, then either get yourself to Utah for the Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA) conference or stay posted for details of the next international conference.

And talk about your niche within a niche – for $350 you can register for Colonial Williamsburg’s “17th Annual Working Wood in the 18th Century” conference specifically on 18th century writing desks.

In addition to an inside look at the design, construction, and evolution of 18th-century desk forms, this year’s event features a tool swap and the chance to chat with editors from Fine Woodworking magazine.

chocolateBummed to discover that you just missed Colonial Williamsburg’s conference on “400 Years of Chocolate: Aztec to Artisans”?

Then you’ll be happy to know you can still attend the World Chocolate Forum in London or dozens of other chocolate business gatherings in China, Mexico, and scores of other countries.

For a very different sensory experience, there’s the historic National Association of Negro Musicians National Association of Negro Musicians conference in Washington, DC. The organization awarded their first scholarship in 1919 to Marian Anderson. How cool is that!

Always wanted to open your own gym or other fitness-related business? Then head to the Athletic Business Conference & Expo happening next November in New Orleans. Although the agenda is not yet set, the organizers describe it as a premier educational event and trade show for athletic, fitness and recreation professionals.

Or perhaps you want to sell tangible or e-products online. If so, there’s the Summit for Marketplace Sellers at Amazon, eBay, Sears, Etsy & More happening in May in Philadelphia.

None of these ring your bell?

There’s always the totally free Entrepreneur’s 2015 Growth Conference this February 4th in warm (!) Miami.

Unlike the highly niched gatherings you just learned about, conferences like this that attract people with wildly diverse businesses are ideal if…

  • You live in the area and want to spend a fun and informative day with like-minded people
  • You have a blog, podcast or other business where you profile interesting entrepreneurs
  • Your customers or clients are small business owners.

Regardless of the topic, conferences are a great place to meet and learn alongside “your tribe.”

Plus since most have some sort of expo or tradeshow, attending a conference is also a great way to find potential business ideas and partners.

Want A Solid Business Idea Before You Go to Any Live Event?

Since 1995 I’ve helped thousands of people go from confusion to clarity.

If you’re still trying to find a way to connect the dots between what you love to do and how you can get paid to do it, schedule one of a limited number of Find My Perfect Business consultations today.

To find out if a Find My Perfect Business consultation is right for you call 413-535-0451 eastern.

Outside the US send an email to [email protected] with your Skype ID and I’ll get back to you with a meeting time.

Let 2015 be your year to change course!

Want to MEET Barbara Corcoran?


7 Reasons You Need to Attend Entrepreneur Magazine’s 2015 Growth Conference

In 2014 I flew down to Miami to attend Entrepreneur magazine’s Annual Growth Conference. It was hands down one of the best events I’ve ever attended.

Four years later the conference is back in Miami.

There are at least seven reasons why you should move heaven and earth to be there on February 4th.

barbaracI’ll get to how you can meet – and perhaps even be on stage with Barbara Corcoran – in a moment.

But I’ll start first with perhaps the most surprising reason of all.

(I was going to save this reason for last. But I moved it first out of fear that you’d say, “I can’t afford it” click away and never get to reasons 2-6.)

#1 The Entire Conference is Freakin’ Free!

Thanks to long-time sponsors UPS the cost to attend the entire conference is zero, zilch, zippo!

And that includes a continental breakfast and a fabulous sit-down lunch with a table full of fabulous people in your new Entrepreneurs Tribe!


Of course if you’re not local there’s the cost of getting to Miami.

But your travel expenses are freakin’ tax deductible – even if you’re just starting out and haven’t yet made a dime!

According to the United States Internal Revenue Service, as long as your efforts demonstrate an intention to earn a profit, you can begin deducting any money you invest in building your business right away.

Or as the IRS puts it…

You do not need to actually make a profit to be in a trade or business as long as you have a profit motive.

That means you can deduct the cost of airfare, Amtrak, lodging, rental car, ground transportation, parking, and a portion of meals.

And for my friends up north, did I mention the conference is in hot Miami in frigid February? Now that’s my kind of tax-deductible trip!

Then there’s the amazing Barbara Corcoran and reason #2 to be there. 

#2 You’ll Be Inspired to Think BIG

barbara-corcoranIf you’re a huge fan of ABC’s reality hit Shark Tank like I am, you’ll love hearing from this year’s keynote speaker real estate mogul turned entrepreneur investor Barbara Corcoran.

If Barbara can parlay a $1,000 loan into a five-billion-dollar real estate business which she later sold for $66 million – then you can certainly make a go of your business.

#3 You’ll Receive Expert Advice

Upon registering you also have the chance to apply for the chance to be one of three lucky entrepreneurs to take the stage with Barbara Corcoran.

Once there you’ll have five minutes to pitch your product or business to receive 1-1 advice from Barbara herself.

What if you don’t make the cut? No worries, you can still jump into a speed mentoring session with a variety of business experts from SCORE.

Conference organizers describe it as your chance to:

Get ideas and answers to your toughest challenges from experienced professionals in marketing, finance, accounting, sales, business management, human resources and more. You’ll move from coach to coach in quick-format pacing, so come prepared to share your challenge succinctly to get the most from this session.

#4 You’ll Learn A Ton

Successful entrepreneurs are all about continuous learning.

You can choose from breakout sessions on a host of topics from branding yourself and your business to choosing the right business structure to funding your business to getting the media to notice you – and more.

#5 The Chance to Pitch Your Company to Entrepreneur Magazine

Years ago I was lucky enough to get a full page feature in the former Entrepreneur Business Start-Ups magazine.

If you already have a company, then you have the chance to pitch your story to the magazine editors.

Here’s how it worked when I attended:

First you stand in a big line which moves pretty quickly and is filled with other fascinating entrepreneurs.

The organizers let a dozen or so entrepreneurs into the pitch room at one time. Once in you grab a seat across from a random editor and launch into your 3 minute pitch.

At the 2010 conference I pitched to then media editor Justin Petruccelli. I had to do it again I’d definitely research the different editors ahead of time to determine which would be most likely to be interested in my particular business.

Regardless of the outcome, just the process of planning your pitch is an incredibly useful exercise for any entrepreneur.

#6 Meet Movers and Shakers

You won’t find any snobby gurus here. To the contrary, the movers and shakers at this conference are all too happy to chat with participants.

Counterclockwise: Entrepreneur Editor in Chief Amy Cosper, 2010 keynote and the late guerilla marketing guru and multiple best-selling author Jay Conrad Levinson, Founder and Chairman of BNI Ivan Misner, and 2009 College Entrepreneur of the Year Bradley Ericson.

movers and shakers

#7 Meet the Most Amazing Entrepreneurs

Honestly, to me the best part of the conference is the opportunity to connect with other amazing entrepreneurs.

feverishpopsLike the engaging Felecia Hatcher. After being laid off from Nintendo in 2008 Felecia and her husband Derick and another partner founded Feverish Pops in Miami.

They began with two ice cream carts they purchased on Craig’s List.

Today Felicia’s company offers handcrafted flavors like Pineapple Basil, Chocolate Salted Coconut Watermelon, even spiked varieties like Ginger Vodka. For more info please visit

Clients include Paypal, Google, TRUMP, JCrew, Tom Cruise, Universal Music, Cirque de Soleil, Bacardi and the US Census Bureau.

And Feverish Pops has been featured on the Cooking Channel, NBC Today Show, Modern Luxury Magazine, Black Enterprise, Air Tran Magazine, and elsewhere.

Four years later and a few million brain cells less, I don’t recall the names of all the amazing self-bossers I met there. But I do remember what a lot of them did.

Like this very happy franchisee of a Schakalad Chocolate Factory store, the successful retail store consultant, and the couple who started Atomic Tattoos now in locations across Florida.

amazing entres

As for these three people… Well I have no memory of their names or businesses. And I definitely don’t remember why this guy was wearing a kilt!

I included them as a reminder of how fun it was to be in a room full of smiling people who all share one thing in common…

A great idea and the confidence to act on it.


Learn more about the 2015 Entrepreneur Growth Conference.

Still Trying to Find Your Calling? 

Imagine how much more exciting this conference would be if you have a solid direction.

There’s still time to roar into the New Year knowing exactly what you love to do and how you can get paid to do it.

Schedule a FREE Find My Perfect Business 15 minute Personal Assessment.

Call my direct line at 413-535-0451 eastern today. Or send a Skype invitation along with your time zone to drvalerieyoung.

Make 2015 the year you say, “I’m finally going to find a way to work when, where, and how I want!”

3 Ways to Find Your Tribe

Caroline Myss wrote, “We evolve at the rate of the tribe we are plugged into.”

Put another way: Who you hang out with now has a lot to do with where you’ll wind up later.

Take “Angela.”

A big reason why she’s failed to evolve into the professional singer she was meant to be is because Angela has never been plugged into the right “tribe.”

Angela grew up imitating legendary singers like Ella Fitzgerald and Lena Horn while part of a family of country music fans and surrounded by friends into heavy metal.

singerAs an adult Angela never lost her desire to be a jazz vocalist. She has the talent and the drive.

But Angela is still immersed in her old tribe.

The problem isn’t one of differing musical tastes.

The problem is no one in Angela’s life has the knowledge, experience, or interest in supporting her dream.

Angela needs to find her “tribe” – in this case professional singers who know it’s possible to be paid to perform because they’re doing it themselves.

Everybody Needs a Tribe

In order for you to evolve from employee to self-bosser then you need to find your tribe too.

If you’ve found your passion, then you know who what your tribe looks like. But what if you can’t figure out how to find them?

That was Jessica’s problem. She writes about wartrol review :

questionHi Valerie

My Aunt Cindy recommended your website 7 years ago and I have been following you ever since. My husband and I have begun creating a new life around much of your advice.

After years of searching and experimenting with my different skills and hobbies and creating my own successes, I am starting my own coaching business.  

I want to immerse myself with wonderful people who are doing what I want to do but I am struggling to find seminars, conferences, online groups, anything. I can find individuals online across the country, but I want to meet people in real life. Where can I begin?

Jessica Nason
East Killingly, CT 

Jessica’s tribe is other coaches.

Your own tribe may be other fiber artists, eBay sellers, or whatever it is that you are either doing or dream of doing.

If, like Jessica, you can’t find a local group you still have options.

Option 1: Expand Your Tribe

If you can’t find an industry-specific group then join your local chamber of commerce, inventor group, or any gathering of entrepreneurs.

If Jessica joined a women business owners group I guarantee a number of members will be coaches. That means she can network with her specific tribe and meet prospective clients at the same time!

hercornerKeep in mind too that not all Tribes need to be local. Sorry to leave out my male readers, but if you’re a woman business owner you can join a really neat organization called Her Corner.

Founded by my friend Frederique Irwin, the organization recently launched a new, free Community Membership level with lots of free discounts and perks to help you grow.

It’s a great no cost way to collaborate with other members, get access to discounted products and services, and tap into the collective wisdom of other women business owners who are equally committed to growing their businesses.

Option 2: Start Your Own Tribe

If you want to be in a group made up of people in your specific business– and you can’t find one in your area – then start one!

Like Jessica I couldn’t find a coach networking group in her area either. However, I did find the 2015 Directory of Connecticut Holistic Health Practitioners which lists dozens of life/spiritual and other coaches and practitioners.

Armed with that information, Jessica could easily invite specific coaches to meet for coffee or drinks. Or, for a less targeted approach, she could use Meet Up to start a coaches group in her area.

Option 3: Change Seekers Need a Tribe Too 

If you’re still in search mode you may be thinking… “But, how can I find my tribe if I don’t know what I want to do?”

It doesn’t matter whether you know the passion part of profiting from your passion. What matters is you know you want to be free from job jail.

If you’re surrounded by people who are diehard employees – and you don’t want to wind up as a lifer yourself – then your tribe is other freedom seekers.

One way to connect with your tribe and learn at the same time is to gather a group of likeminded friends or co-workers together for a book reading group.

The War of Art, Making a Living Without a Job, or Your Money or Your Life are all good choices.

Even if you don’t have a specific idea you can still take a business start-up or marketing class through your local adult education program.

Or if you live in the U.S., Guam, Puerto Rico, American Samoa or the U.S. Virgin Islands it should be easy to find a class offered by one of the 900 Small Business Development Centers.

Even if you’re in search mode you still need to hang out with the people who are where you want to be.

Unless you live in a highly remote location you’re bound to find local business owner, inventor, artisan, and other meet ups in your area.

If you want to evolve into working when, where, and how you want – being plugged into the right tribe is essential!

Finding your tribe is easier than you may think. You just need to try.

Still Looking For A Way To Earn A Living Without A J-O-B?

Another year is almost gone. Isn’t it time you got the clarity and direction you need to get out of job jail?

Schedule a complimentary Find My Perfect Business personal assessment today. It could be the best 15 minutes of your life.

I’m so committed to helping you find your perfect business that I’m willing to give you my personal phone line.

Call me during normal business hours at 413-535-0451 eastern. Outside the US hit reply now to set up an appointment via Skype.

Obviously, I can’t possibly spend this kind of free time with all of my 27,000 readers. In fact, I only have a handful of assessment appointments a month.

If you really want to find your perfect business so you can start living on your own terms, I urge you to call for your Find My Perfect Business personal assessment today.

Add Your Voice to the Changing Course Job Tribe

Thousands of heads are always better than one!

Who is your Tribe? What other options, ideas, or additional resources do you see for finding one’s Tribe? If you could create the ideal Tribe – what would that look like?

Cool Jobs #16 and #17

Get Paid to Speak or Hold Cool Events – Or Both!

Picture yourself delivering a presentation or leading a workshop on a topic you love.

Maybe that topic is spirituality, abundance or effective leadership. Or what about how leading with spirit results in an abundant bottom line?

Or perhaps you’d love to speak about how sports or learning to play a musical instrument can be a metaphor for academic or business success.

Or on how to find your true calling, self-care for caretakers, or a thousand other topics.

excited groupNow imagine earning four – or even five – figures per speaking gig sharing your passion with others.

Welcome to my life!

I became a paid speaker at 26. My first gig earned me a whopping $150. Good money when rent was $400!

Last year I earned six figures speaking, and this year I’m on track to do the same.

Over the years I’ve addressed well over 70,000 people at countless organizations from Intel to the YWCA.

And I’ve had the honor of sharing the main stage with the likes of Martha Stewart and Gloria Steinem (now that’s a combination!)

I’m not telling you this to impress you.

Rather, it’s because I’ve learned a thing or two about how to succeed as a professional speaker – including what mistakes to avoid.

The 3 Biggest Mistakes Aspiring Speakers Make
and How to Avoid Them

The first mistake is actually the worst one because it keeps a lot of talented people with a message to share from ever even trying to get into the speaking business.

Mistake #1: Thinking You Don’t Know Enough

Far too many perfectly capable people think they don’t have enough knowledge to talk about a subject. If you’re one then I have news for you.

speakerYou really don’t know everything there is to know about your topic. But guess what? Neither does anyone else.

There’s always more to learn!

A related mistake is the misguided belief that you can’t possibly speak credibly on a topic unless you have an advanced degree – or indeed any degree.

You don’t need three PhDs and 20 years of experience. You just need to know more than your audience does. As the saying goes, to 3rd graders, 4th graders are gods!

Look at talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger. Despite regularly dishing out “expert” and often controversial opinions and advice on human behavior, “Dr. Laura” as she is known and is not a physician as many of her listeners presume.

Nor is she a psychiatrist, or even a psychologist. Although she did go back and study marriage counseling after starting in radio, the “doctor” designation is from a doctorate in physiology where she studied the effects of insulin on rats.

In fact, an effective counter to the internal or external pressure to be highly credentialed is to proudly proclaim yourself as the “anti-expert.”

In her book French Women Don’t Get Fat, Mireille Guilano lets readers know right up front that she’s not a nutritionist, a psychologist, an exercise physiologist or any other kind of “ist.”

Instead, Guilano says, she’s just a woman who happens to have observed and experienced the French diet and is sharing that knowledge with people who’d like to eat well and not gain weight.

Mistake #2: Not Understanding How Speakers Get Paid

There are three ways you can get paid to speak. You can

a)     Get hired by organizations

b)     Earn money from your adoring audience

c)      Generate revenue from event sponsors

Which model or models you choose depends on your topic, your financial and business goals, and your personal preference. Let’s take a brief look at each.

Get Hired by Organizations

Other than running the occasional workshop or retreat for people who want to change course, this is my primary business model.

Because my topic – confidence – is so far reaching I can speak to a variety of different audiences.

Speaking at corporations

Having worked for a Fortune 500 company I’m comfortable working with such diverse companies as Boeing, IBM, Procter & Gamble, McDonald’s Europe division (sweet!) and Motley Fool.

motleyfoolAnother plus of speaking to for-profit companies is they pay the most!

A topic like “how to raise sane, healthy teenagers” or “how to find your calling” typically won’t fly for employee training. But there’s another way most people don’t know about – so called “spousal meetings.”

Lots of large corporations hold at least one multi-day, off-site meeting a year where attendees (usually executives or top performing sales people) are encouraged to bring their spouse or partner and sometimes the kids too.

While the employees attend mandatory meetings, their family can choose from a range of age-appropriate activities which include speakers!

Speaking at colleges and universities

I’ve spoken at over 70 major colleges and universities. Depending on your message you can specialize in addressing undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, and/or staff.

Whenever you can try to maximize my travel time by grouping my speaking gigs based on location.

For instance this year I will have spoken at Cornell (4x) and nearby University of Syracuse, at North Carolina State University and the neighboring University of North Carolina as well as two California trips to speak at Stanford, UC Berkeley, UC San Francisco, UC Davis, UC Santa Barbara, and University of the Pacific.

Professional or industry associations or charitable organizations

Large professional or industry associations need keynote and break out session speakers for their national, regional, or state-wide events.

Examples from my own experience include American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Alberta Business Women, and Utah Women Attorneys.

Charitable organizations also hire speakers for their fundraising events. Like the dog chef who travels to speak at events put on by the SPCA and other dog shelters.

These organizations tend to operate on a shoe-string, so expect to earn the least here. Keep in mind though that you may be able to arrange selling your book after your talk or to get a professional videotape of your talk.

Earn Money From Your Adoring Audience or From Sponsors – Or Both

If you know what you’re doing you can make insane amounts of money running your own events.

Registration fees

Registration fees are the most obvious source of income. These can range from $5o for a couple of hours to $5,000 for a multi-day event.

Toss in some big name speakers and depending on your audience it’s not unheard of to charge as much as $25,000.

If the material you’re delivering is intended to help your audience to use the information to earn money themselves, then you can charge more. Here again, it has to do with your topic.

Naturally people are willing to pay more for an event on how to make 7 figures selling information products than they are for one on how to write your first screenplay.

Product sales

Another model is to keep the registration fee low – or even free – and instead earn money from so-called “back of the room” sales.

Most often this would mean selling books, CDs, videos and other information products – your own or other peoples.

However, if your event is on fashion or how to write a best-selling cookbook, then you could just as easily sell clothing and accessories, make up, cookware, and other topic appropriate products on site.

Masterminds and other coaching or mentoring programs

Income from registration fees and products can be substantial. But in addition to these revenue streams, the most financially successful speakers use their events another way.

They still provide attendees with valuable content.

However, the secondary goal is to use the event to showcase your credibility and value in order to inspire a smaller segment of the audience to sign up to join your coaching or mentoring program.

It worked for me. I signed on to “mastermind” with three different experts this way. In all three cases it was money well-spent.


Selling sponsorships for your event is another highly lucrative and often under-used way to get paid to speak.

Depending on your topic, sponsors could be a local newspaper or bank, a major corporation, or even a solo-practitioner like a chiropractor or life coach.

Sponsors win because they in front of potential customers in a forum that aligns with their brand and message. You win because sponsor fees can cover part or all of your event costs.

Case in point is Entrepreneur magazine’s annual Growth Conference (an event I highly recommend). The event is free to attend because UPS foots the entire bill – including lunch!

When you can attract 5 to 25 corporate or other major sponsors at the $5,000, $15,000, $25,000, and even $50,000 level, then my friend you are looking at serious revenue.

Bottom line, putting on your own events is a great avenue if:

  • There aren’t a lot of organizations who are willing or able to pay you to speak on your particular topic
  • Your topic is entrepreneurial in nature and/or your primary audience is business owners
  • You want to offer coaching or mentoring after the event
  • You have products to sell
  • You can attract enough attendees to make your event attractive to sponsors

Mistake #3: Not Investing In Your Success

Whether you’re just now launching your speaking career or are a seasoned pro who wants to increase your bottom line, from a financial perspective the BIGGEST mistake you can make is not being willing to make even the smallest investment in yourself and your business.

Speaking skills not as strong as they could be?

You don’t need to spend a dime to join a local chapter of Toastmaster or watch Ted Talks.

To get there much faster though I suggest you attend a formal training program where you can learn from someone who is more experienced, skilled, and further along than you.

LarryValThat’s what I did. This is me and my speaking mentor five time New York Times best-selling author and television personality Larry Winget.

As someone who has earned the right to command a $25,000 speaker fee, I knew he could help me take my own business to the next level. And I was right.

Everyone can become a better speaker. That includes me. Like all great speakers, Larry never stops practicing his craft and neither should you.

Working with Larry cost me a small fortune.

Fortunately, there are two free resources that are happening this very week.

Own the Stage: 7 Strategies to Create a Speaking Business that Attracts Clients, Connection and Cash Flow

This three-part video series is compliments of Darnyelle A. Jervey, MBA.

darnyelleA sought-after speaker and award-winning business coach, Darnyelle has been featured in Black Enterprise, Essence and O Magazines and has shared the stage with some of the greats – Suze Orman, Les Brown, Brian Tracy, Lisa Nichols, Willey Jolley, Delatorro McNeal, and Ali Brown… to name a few.

Darnyelle will share the tips and techniques that helped her launch a speaking business that generates $20,000 a month from corporate and other speaking gigs. These include:

  • A sure-fire technique to turn your audience into raving fans and grow your own “groupie” line
  • The three different types of speaking engagements and how to maximize your earnings in each
  • Must-have marketing materials you need to get you booked again and again

Video 1 comes out today (September 4th) so you’ll want to register for Darnyelle’s speaker training series now.

Sold Out to 7 Figures: The LIVE Event Formula for Cashing In

bariIf you’re already comfortable on stage and are ready to put on your own events there is simply no one out there better to learn from than Suzanne Evans of Hell Yeah Coaching and Bari Baumgardner of Sage Event Management.

You may not know Bari by name. But you may recognize some of her clients.

Bari and her team have planned and managed highly profitable events for people like Ali Brown, Lisa Sasevich, Fabienne Frederickson, Adam Urbanski, Bernadette Doyle, and many others.

Two words that describe Bari are class act.

suzanneOn the other hand there’s my friend Suzanne Evans. (One of the things I love most about Suzanne is that she’d be the first one to laugh at that transition.)

In just a few years this unapologetically big, brash, tell-it-like-it-is business coach has built a multiple 7-figure company.

But style will get you only so far.

What landed Hell Yeah on the Inc. 500 list of fasted growing companies in the US not once, but twice, are their sold-out live events.

After started out with 11 people in a crowded conference room of a dingy chain hotel quickly turned into almost a thousand enthusiastic attendees at a swank luxury hotel.

If you want to put on highly profitable live events this is your chance to learn from Suzanne, Bari and other event professionals.

Get all the details here.

More importantly I hope you realize that with the right message, the right training, and the determination to make a difference in the lives of your audience that you too can get paid to speak.

Get a C.L.U.E.

There are two types of people in the world: Chronic complainers and chronic complainers with a clue.

Both groups can always find something to gripe about.

The difference is, the clueless complainers will go to their grave railing against everyone and everything. Which, of course, only confirms their biggest complaint, namely: “life sucks and then you die.”

“In the middle of difficulty,” observed Albert Einstein, “lies opportunity.” What makes clued-in whiners different is that they have grasped the fundamental genius of success:

Lead to rush nutrition solutions which
Ultimately, with effort,
Equal opportunity

In other words, take just about any problem or situation worthy of complaint — annoying telemarketers, bed bugs, lack of eligible dating partners.

Then add a dash of creative problem solving and you’ve got all the makings for a whole range of positive possibilities. For more info visit

Last time I featured great resources for earning money by:

  • Creating floral arrangements

  • Growing and selling plants from home

  • Working on the farm with a little help from farm school

In This Issue

Today we’ll look at three more cool jobs for aspiring self-bossers.

Each has the potential to solve a problem for someone else while putting money in your pocket!

  • Man Camp – teaching what dads forgot to teach

  • Breaking up is hard to do – but you can help!

  • For some breaking up is fun to do – divorce parties and other ideas

As always, some of the cool ideas you’re about to “meet” come from people in an international community of licensed Profiting From Your Passion® coaches. I hope these ideas inspire you to make your own job!

Cool “Job” #13: Man Camp – teaching what dads forgot to teach

Like many entrepreneurial ideas, this one came disguised as a problem.

My friend Beau Blackwell was lamenting the fact that his father never taught him how to replace a toilet, trouble shoot a stalled car engine, or other stereotypically “guy stuff.”

hammer“Wouldn’t it be great,” said Beau, “if young guys like him could go to “man camp”? Indeed!

If you know how to do basic home maintenance or auto repairs you could teach the classes yourself. If not, find some retired guys who can.

Building On That Idea

You could of course earn money from registration fees. But there are other ways to go.

For instance, you could round up one or more local sponsors to foot the bill. Instead of it being your event it could be billed as Man Camp sponsored by Homey Hardware Store or Best Ever Used Cars.

In addition to sponsor income, being connected with a local business has other advantages like instant credibility, sponsor help in promoting the event at their location, on social media, and on their website, as well as increased chances for local media coverage.

Another way to generate revenue is to work the food and beverage angle.

I remember my friend Barbara Winter telling about a famous herb farm that used to operate in Connecticut. They didn’t have a license to serve food. So they charged a fee to tour the gardens that included a free lunch!

beerSo what if you tap a local brewery as a sponsor? That way you can include a free sample which in turn allows you to up the registration fee. (Just don’t teach classes involving any buzz saws!)

Man Camp is a great idea. But as a home owner there are a lot of things I wish my dad had taught me too – things that neither of my two brothers learned either.

So you could always organize a similar class for women who tend to be less intimidated learning how to dry wall or change spark plugs in the company of other women.

Cool “Job” #14: Breaking up is hard to do – but you can help!

brokenheartAnyone who’s been dumped knows that breaking up really is hard to do.

You don’t feel like eating. Everything reminds you of your ex. You obsess about how incredible they were while developing amnesia about their faults.

As you’ll learn from an informative and entertaining video called The Science of Love, there’s a physiological reason why you have a hard time getting over your beloved.

brainAccording to researchers, the same regions of the brain are activated during a breakup as when an addict is going through withdrawal.

So it stands to reason that a step-based model like Alcoholics Anonymous could be used to facilitate recovery from heart-break as well.

The video features several newly single people trying out five steps like identifying three things you learned from the relationship and mediation.

Building on That Idea

The 5-step process got me thinking about things like offering Break Up Recovery Coaching, Break Up Support Groups, even Break Up Retreats to cool locations.

You don’t need to be a psychologist or other mental health provider. Rather if you have coaching experience or simply organizing skills, you can partner with someone else to do the emotional heavy-lifting.

singingThe video ends with a singer composing a customized rap song for the people featured in the video.

If you have a knack for songwriting, this could be just the cool job for you!


What If You Could Get Paid to Share Cool Business Ideas?

  • Are you an idea person?

  • Do you love to brainstorm?

  • Would you like to get paid to do what comes naturally?

You’re not alone!

In less time than you think you can train to become a licensed Profiting From Your Passion® coach.

Here’s what one student had to say as she started digging into the course material…

The resources on the student site are unbelievable. I can’t even imagine the time, energy, finances and mental/physical exertion you have poured into this.


Most of what I have experienced appears to have lead me to this work! Thanks again for all the work you have put into this program.


Robbie Penney
Bakersfield, CA

An accelerated version of this online course begins September 8th. Seats are limited.

Click here to learn how you can get started for as little as $379.

Cool “Job” #15: For some, breaking up is fun to do — divorce parties and other ideas

Some newly single people moved from healing to celebrating and there are party planners who are all too eager to help them do it in style.

According to a growing number of party favor and event planning companies specializing in divorce parties, business is booming.

Today you can buy divorce party favors like “pin the tail on the ex” and divorce party coasters. Others like Kissed the Wrong Frog and fabletics sell clothing, lip gloss, and shot glasses.

The owner of Los Angeles-based The Divorce Party Planner books at least three parties a month. At $5,000 to a whopping $20,000, helping people celebrate a new beginning can also be highly profitable.

Building on that Idea

If you prefer a service-based business, a quick search of other major cities like Atlanta and Denver didn’t turn up any divorce party planners there. So, why not become the go-to planner in your area?

Don’t know where to begin? Pick up a copy of Divorce Party Handbook.

If you’re not into the angry ex going to a strip club with her gal-pals scene that means there are others who feel the same.

So why not offer an alternative for divorcees looking for more Zen-like or spiritually-based rituals. It could be as simple as a weekend at a local retreat center or spa or as high-end as a group trip to Sedona or Machu Picchu.

If you want to specialize even more, you could create events that appeal to gay divorcees, Jewish divorcees, devout Christian divorcees – add your own here.

Not a people-person?

Then set up an online store selling divorce-themed party favors and other products.

No offense to really dated looking The Divorce Shower Store (the link to Myspace nailed it) – but it wouldn’t be hard to come up with a more polished look or one aimed at an upscale market.

With enough traffic you can also attract ad revenue.

To increase your search engine optimization (SEO) and stand out from the competition at the same time,you can use one of the best seo in montreal agency or supply visitors with a steady stream of articles on topics like surviving the divorce, rocking it as a single parent, and getting back in the dating scene.

Or maybe you’re more the creative type? For a premium, you can offer divorce voodoo dolls customized to resemble a cheating ex.

Or you can design your own products like this funny “break-up prevention” T-shirt I saw in the Pittsburgh airport which would make a great coffee mug or wall plaque too.

The marriage may have ended, but the possibilities for creative self-bossers to create their own cool job are truly endless.

Add Your Voice to the Cool Job Tribe

Thousands of heads are always better than one!

How would you build on any of these cool jobs? What other options, ideas, or additional profit centers did you picture? What other cool jobs have you spotted lately? Post below!

Cool Jobs: Flowers, Farm School, and More

Like many people of northern European descent, my people “don’t do heat.”

Fortunately, the Northeast is being rewarded for enduring the relentless snow storms of last winter with truly spectacular summer weather.

The days have been largely sunny and warm. Nights have been delightfully cool and at times downright chilly.

Best of all, there have been virtually none of the 90-plus degrees and muggy stretches we usually see.

The corn fields are tall, flowers in full bloom, and the many local farmers markets in full swing.

Last time I shared 3 cool “jobs” you can create or build on:

  • Get paid to share your love of crafts
  • Invent a new toy
  • Cater to kids

In This Issue

In this issue we’ll look at three more cool jobs for people who love the bounties of summer. In one case, you don’t even need to work outdoors!

  • Design floral arrangements
  • Grow and sell plants from home
  • Get back to the organic farm

As always, some of the cool ideas you’re about to “meet” come from people in an international community of licensed Profiting From Your Passion® coaches. I hope these ideas inspire you to make your own job!

Cool “Job” #10: Design floral arrangements

You don’t have to work out doors to arrange flowers.  But you do need to know what you’re doing.

There are some great illustrated instruction books on Amazon:

Conferences are a great way to both get a feel for any field and to engage in continuing education. Consider attending the American Institute of Floral Designers national symposium, June 30 — July 4, 2015, in Denver.

Can’t afford to register? Starting later this fall the Institute’s foundation will once again take applications for scholarships.

They also offer a series of online courses for $79 or you can find a list of approved education partners in the US and internationally.
Cover-Florist-205x311If you’re serious about floral design as a business (or even a j-o-b), check out Fab Jobs Guide to Becoming a Florist.

The guide can help you decide whether to buy an existing shop or a franchise or to open your own place and includes sections on how to write a business plan, required tools, equipment and supplies, finding and working with growers and wholesalers, marketing, delivery options, and more.

If being your own boss isn’t your thing, you’ll also learn how to get hired as a floral designer working in a small flower shop, for a chain, for a wholesaler, or in a grocery store.

Cool “Job” #11: Grow and sell plants from home

mikemcgroartyMike McGroarty from Perry, Ohio has made thousands of extra dollars running a thriving home-based plant business.

According to Mike, you don’t need an entire farm to get into this fun and profitable seasonal business. In fact, he says you can do it on a mere 1/20 of an acre of land and sell your plants literally from your driveway.

People kept asking Mike how they too could make extra money growing plants from home.

Hint: When people want to know how you do something, listen to them, because it’s opportunity knocking.

Wisely, Mike did listen, and today he also sells a low-cost e-guide that that spells out how you can set up the same system where you live.

Cool “Job” #12: Time to get back to the (organic) farm

organicfarmAre you an organic food enthusiast who loves the idea of getting out from behind a computer and working the land? Then follow the trends my friend.

Between now and 2018 the organic food market in United States is forecasted to grow 14%.

If you just want to dip your toe in the water, check out World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. For a $40 membership you get a directory of 1,927 host farms in all 50 states, the US Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico that offer a variety of educational opportunities

You spend half a day on the farm (which includes room and board). Depending on what host farm you select, you can learn about growing vegetables, keeping bees, building straw bale houses, working with animals, making wine, and much more.

Or maybe you’re ready to dive into farming in a big way but lack the necessary knowledge and skills. If so consider applying for the year-long training offered on the 183-acre Farm School in Athol, Massachusetts.

You can choose from such wide ranging subjects as dairy farming, food preservation, forestry, green house propagation, pest and disease control, acquiring farm land, business planning, marketing and much more.

They also have an optional three-week winter trip to a farm in Tuscany. Sweet!

At $18,000, which includes housing, it’s definitely not cheap. But when you see how former students have crafted their own cool jobs or enterprises, you may decide it’s an investment worth making.

A less expensive (but also more limited) training option can be found at the Organic Farm School situated on the historic Greenbank Farm on Whidbey Island in northwest Washington State. The publicly owned farm consists of 500+ acres that include fields, forest, wetlands, and a 10-acre economic development center.

Tuition for their 7.5 month program is $5,200 (payment plans are available) plus $180 a month for housing.

Both farm schools also exemplify the beauty of multiple streams of income.

In addition to selling farm fresh products, the Athol farm has a summer youth camp, runs its own accredited middle school housed in a converted chicken coop, and hosts children on field trips from other schools.

The Whidbey Island location runs a community school that offers shorter classes taught by volunteers and rents out space for wine tastings, dog shows, and other local events.

Add Your Voice to the Cool Job Tribe

Thousands of heads are always better than one!

How would you build on any of these cool jobs? What other options, ideas, or additional profit centers did you picture? What other cool jobs have you spotted lately? Post below!

3 New Cool “Jobs”

A really cool job. Everyone wants one. Right?

But what if you also want to do your own thing? To enjoy more flexibility and control over when, where, and how you work?

To put the life side of the work-life equation first?

Then my friend you need to create your own cool job.

It’s not as hard as you might think. Nor is it the fast-easy path to overnight riches that some gurus make it out to be.

Fundamentally, making the leap from having a boss to being your own boss comes down to two things:

1)      A great idea

2)     The courage to act on it

The good news is there truly is no end to the creative ways to make a livelihood without a job-job.

Creative Options For People Who Want to Do Their Own Thing

Last time I shared 3 cool “jobs” you can create or build on:

  • A cool way to share your of love of wine
  • Imitating master artists
  • Baking and delivering warm cookies and cold milk

In This Issue

In this issue you’ll discover how to:

As always, some of the cool ideas you’re about to “meet” come from people in an international community of licensed Profiting From Your Passion® coaches.

I hope these ideas inspire you to make your own job!

Cool “Job” #7 Share Your Love of Crafts

There are hundreds if not thousands of craft-related websites. What caught my eye was one that brings together two unlikely passions.

Geek Crafts combines geeky stuff (or what some might call nerdy) like Starwars, Harry Potter, and Wonderwoman and, of all things, crafting!

It’s also a great example of how you don’t actually have to “do” crafting. Instead you can dedicate yourself to scoping out cool crafting ideas like they do.

Plus, the blogger bios are a fun reminder that there’s more to life than office politics and commuter traffic.

paulyTake Pauly who tells us that he lives in the fabled lands of Canada” with his wife, son and “a small zoo.”

For his day job Pauly “travels all over the world” where he says he “sees the inside of many airports, hotels and taxi cabs.”

During his own time though, he “enjoys cross-stitch, as long as it is geeky.” Who knew?

Pauly and full-time crafter wife Redd co-run a store on Etsy called Geekopolis.

Oh yes, Pauly says he’s also “totally a Viking.”

Building on That Idea

When you calculate in materials and time, it can be tough to make any real money selling individual craft items. So a lot of people just give up.

But what if there were a way to sell just your crafting IDEAS?

Enter the craft pattern and education site You Can Make This. Once your project has been accepted, the company shares it with their eager crafters. Then when your pattern sells you get 50 percent of the revenue.

Side note: The business was founded by stay-at-home mom and avid crafter Kim Christopherson. It was so successful her husband Ryan was able to quit his technology job to join her. Sweet!

Cool “Job” #8 Invent a New Toy

As kids Mike Cheshire and Tom Aiezza they knew their parents weren’t keen on them playing Frisbee in the house. So they fashioned their own smaller disks out of jar lids, shaved bottle caps… whatever worked.

The childhood friends teamed up after college to produce the same mini-Frisbee toy.

flickerzRather than go to China, they hired a plastics company in Southern California to produce a first run of 7,500 Flickerz. Total cost from prototype to mold to finished product was only $10,000.

Stellar sales at 12 independent toy stores meant they were on the right track. Today their site features lots of video demonstrations. But back then the pair had posted a video of themselves doing trick throws that they posted on LinkedIn of all places.

A toys sales rep saw it and told them they needed to go to a toy fair happening in two weeks. Mike and Tom quickly put down $2,500 for half a booth and with that, Jungo Toys was officially born.

In 2012, they sold between 50,000 and 60,000 discs. Before long they were able to begin paying themselves.

In 2013, Jungo sold 120,000 units. This year they expect to double again breaking the half a million mark in revenue. Customized versions with an organization’s logo are especially profitable because there’s no packaging or sales commissions to pay out.

Building on That Idea

Having such a low price point has had an unexpected benefit. One non-government organization purchased a batch of Flickerz to keep kids standing in food lines amused. And for children at an orphanage in Kenya it’s the first toy they ever owned.

This could be a great opportunity to start a non-profit that matches non-government organizations serving poor children or those in refugee camps with toy manufacturers willing to donate over-stock toys.

Have an idea for a toy?

I found this article by the folks at Sesame Street.

blockbusterCheck out The Blockbuster Toy! How to Invent the Next Big Thing

Or if you’re further along in the process or don’t mind investing $1,250 for immersion education, consider learning from industry experts at either of these mega-events:

Cool “Job” #9 Cater to Kids

When you walk into the romantic, candle-lit dining room at Chandler’s Restaurant in South Deerfield, Massachusetts, the last word that would come to mind is “children.”

But when you realize they are part of Yankee Candle’s huge flagship store known for its Disney-like Bavarian Christmas village, then it all makes sense.

Every month the restaurant hosts a mother/daughter luncheon. Guests dress up in feather boas, tiaras, and fancy attire to enjoy an “award winning kids menu” while listening to a reading of one of the books in Jane O’Connor’s Fancy Nancy series.

It must be a hit because Chandler’s recently added kid’s cooking classes for $25.00 per child. This includes instruction, recipes to take home, lunch, and complimentary lunch for one accompanying parent.

It’s a great deal for the parent and smart way for the restaurant to attract first-time diners.

Building on That Idea

That got me thinking. Someone who loves creative marketing and children could fashion themselves into an internationally recognized children’s event expert. (I like to think big!)

You could research other innovative ways normally adult-focused businesses are using kid-friendly events to bring parents and their credit cards in the door. Then sell your findings in the form of an e-book or marketing white paper.

Or simply use it to custom design children’s events for restaurants, retail stores, libraries, even car dealerships or dental practices.

Resource for a Change

Attend the SCORE Awards Gala Without Leaving Home

In celebration of their 50th anniversary, on Thursday, August 14 at 7:00pm Eastern SCORE is live streaming their Awards Gala

This is a great opportunity to get some inspiration and potential ideas without ever leaving home!

Two honorees that caught my eye are:

Garbage to Garden A Maine-based company picks up your food scraps and returns them as compost. If you love this idea as much as I do, this could also be a great opportunity to contact them to see how you might work together to launch this same business where you live.

Lulyboo The founder and inventor of this baby bed carrier worked with two Score mentors. One guided her to grow the business while another helped her script and produce a video entry for a local entrepreneur forum. The video came in 1st place netting the founder a cash prize of $10,000.

Add Your Voice to Cool Job Tribe

Thousands of heads are always better than one!

How would you build on any of these cool jobs? What other options, ideas, or additional profit centers did you picture? What other cool jobs have you spotted lately? Post below!


The Big End of Summer
Income Generation Idea Sale!

You Really Can Live Life
On Your Own Terms.
All You Need is A Great Idea

Ideas are powerful. When you finally see a way you can make money doing what you love, something remarkable happens.

Suddenly the fear, procrastination, overwhelm, self-doubt and all the other dream killers suddenly take a back seat.

An idea gives you direction. Without your own idea, you’re destined to watch others pursue their passion while your own life passes you by.

Over the span of 19 years, I’ve helped thousands of aspiring self-bossers just like you to connect the dots between what you love to do and how you can make money at it.

And the most important “dot” of all? Making sure that all ideas pass the all-important Life Test. That way you can put your life first – and work second.

Now for a limited time you can schedule a personalized Income Generation Idea and Action Planning Strategy Session for the significantly reduced price of just $499.

That means for under five hundred bucks you can get one – or quite possibly – multiple income generating ideas.

Not sure what you love to do?

“The way to find out about your happiness,” said renowned mythology scholar Joseph Campbell, “is to keep your mind on those moments when you feel most happy, when you are really happy – not excited, not just thrilled, but deeply happy.”

fytc coverThat’s why to help you re-discover your lost passions, your laser session includes a copy of It’s Never Too Late to Find Your Calling: A Handbook to Help You Find Your Passion and Get a Life.

And if you worry that the thing you most love to do won’t pay the bills, think again!

Once you discover the utterly liberating concept of multiple streams of income you’ll realize that more is possible than you ever imagined.

Normally this option-inspiring guide is $19.99.

But it’s yours free when you book your Income Generation Idea and Action Planning Strategy Session.

Unfortunately, my busy travel and speaking schedule means I can only make this offer to the first 10 people.

If you really want to discover how you can get paid to do what you love click here to secure your spot at this special End of Summer Sale rate of just $499.

Next, get out your calendar and call me at 413-535-5107 eastern time during normal business hours. I’ll do a brief intake and schedule your one hour session.

I’ve taken a lot of career assessment tools and they always end up telling me I’m creative – which I already knew – but they still leave me stumped as to what to DO with my creativity to actually make a living.

Valerie gave me a lot of good ideas that really made me think. She helped me see how many different possibilities there are in the world for us creative types.

Lynette Turner
Los Angeles, CA

I am still trying to catch my breath after our call! I am very satisfied with the way things went… You were giving me ideas, tips and resources until the second our call ended.

Bob Nelson
Chicago, IL

Someone booked an  Income Generation Idea and Action Planning Strategy Session just before this blog was posted.

That leaves just 9 available spots.

This End of the Summer “Idea Sale” will sell out.

To reserve your spot on my schedule or see more cool jobs go to :

The Power of An Idea

Changing Course is well… changing course!

My vision for the newsletter I founded in 1995 was reflected in its motto.

Live Life on Purpose
Work at What You Love
and Follow Your Own Road

I still seek to inspire those who know there is more to life than office politics and commuter traffic.

But first and foremost, I’m an Idea Person.

So is Ernie Zelinski, author of Real Success Without a Real Job. In fact, Ernie says creative thinking is the thing that helped him generate over a million dollars.

No wonder he refers to creativity as “the poor person’s wealth.”

It was this passion for generating creative ways to create your own job that led me to my new motto…


Over the span of 19 years, I’ve helped thousands of aspiring self-bossers just like you to connect the dots between what they love to do and how they can make money doing it. 

Once you arrive at a great idea – the kind that makes you with excitement – you’ll find something remarkable happens.

Suddenly the fear, procrastination, overwhelm, self-doubt and all the other dream killers suddenly take a back seat.

I’ve seen this with my own coaches, most of who are themselves starting a business for the first time.

Right now there’s a lot of entrepreneurial ideas flying around on the private Facebook group we set up for people currently enrolled in the Profiting from Your Passion® career coach training.

It inspires me every day to see this international community of “Opportunity Detectives” in action.

That’s why starting today, I’m launching a new series designed to help you – and all 27,000 Changing Course readers – to find and grow your own Great Idea! 

In fact, many of the fascinating ways to turn interests into income you’ll see in this new series come directly from these inspiring coaches.

In This Post

Great Idea #1: Play the Name Game

Have a knack for coming up with cool business names? Now you can get paid to do it.

namingforceTraditionally a company or entrepreneur in search of a cool name for their enterprise, initiative, or product had to hire a pricey ad agency.

Enter Naming Force.

This online naming agency gathers names from registered members (U.S. residents/18 and over) and then uses crowd sourcing to help select the best name for their clients.

Here are a few examples of recent winning names:

  • Thumbs Up! for a don’t text and drive campaign
  • Cordinazer for a cord management system
  • Meter Mate for a parking meter payment app

If the name you submitted gets selected, you receive a cash award.

You can also get a cool name for your own website or product for as little as $100. Since the right name can make or break a business, I’d say that’s money well spent.

Learn more or register here.


Great Idea #2: Get Packing

getpackingThe majority of parents scramble to scrape together enough money to send their kid to summer camp.

Turns out, wealthy parents have a different problem – finding the time to pack their child’s bag for summer camp.

So they’re paying personal organizers up to $1,000 to pack their kid’s bag for them.

If you happen to live near a city or affluent suburb with a greater number of people in the higher income bracket, then you really only need to find 5-10 clients to make a nice chunk of summer cash.

And if parents will pay to ready their youngster for summer camp, can packing their college-bound teens be far behind?

Great Idea #3: Get Paid to Teach

Do you love to share your knowledge or expertise, but don’t know how to attract students?


Maybe you’ve already thought about making money tutoring people on things like math, chemistry, reading, or academic test preparation.

Or perhaps teaching others how to play an instrument, cook healthy meals, do improv, or learn a second language.

The problem of course, is finding enough students to pay you!

That’s where Take Lessons comes in.

This free teacher-student matching service allows teachers to post a free profile so your local, in-home, or online class can be found by the thousands of students who visit the site every day.

When students sign up, you receive 75% of student fees.

Plus you get mobile tools, marketing resources, and live, online lesson options to increase your reach even more.

Since Take Lessons began in 2006 the company has paid out more than $21 million dollars to its teachers.

So, what are you waiting for? Go teach something!

Free or Low Cost Dream Launchers

#1 New Book Offers Recipe for Success [Limited Free Copies Available]

Launch is the title of my friend, mentor, and former stay-at-home dad Jeff Walker’s new book.

The subtitle pretty much says it all…

An Internet Millionaire’s Secret Formula
To Sell Almost Anything Online,
Build A Business You Love, And
Live The Life Of Your Dreams

If this sounds like hype, I assure you it is not.

In Launch Jeff outlines the exact process used by over 10,000 people around the world to start or grow a successful online business.

Using case studies of real people who used his high-end product launch formula program (PLF), Jeff lays out the actual steps you need to create your own product or service, find interested consumers, and turn them into enthusiastic buyers.

People have used PLF in every type of market and niche you can think of and realized tremendous success.

In fact, it’s almost become a hobby of Jeff’s to keep track of many of those markets. Here’s just a partial list of some of the markets:

  • dating advice
  • test preparation
  • Photoshop tutorials
  • loan officers
  • realtors
  • juggling
  • college admissions
  • baseball coaches
  • mixed martial arts
  • SAP programmers
  • knitting
  • crocheting
  • dog training
  • mutual fund investing
  • trading (forex, futures, stocks, etc)
  • dressage
  • real estate investing
  • learning guitar
  • training doctors to read ultrasounds
  • business coaching (around the world)
  • raw food
  • massage therapy
  • romance (writing love letters)
  • personal trainers
  • medicinal herbs
  • fiction writing
  • horse training
  • learning piano
  • dog agility training
  • marching band accessories
  • tennis instruction
  • yoga
  • youth soccer coaching
  • pet care
  • songwriting
  • health food
  • hand analysis
  •  meditation
  • brain science
  • self-defense

There’s another reason I know Jeff’s launch formula works. I used it.

For years I resisted spending more than a hundred dollars here and there on marketing. Then, on the recommendation of a trusted and extremely successful entrepreneur, I bit the bullet and bought Jeff’s program.

I followed the formula exactly. Not only did it work just the way Jeff said it would, but I generated more revenue in six months than I had in the previous six years – combined.

You don’t have to spend the kind of money I did to master the product launch formula.

Because in an effort to generate pre-book buzz for Launch, Jeff is giving away a limited number of copies – for free. You get:

  • The exact formula that Jeff’s students have used to generate more than $500 million in sales in hundreds of markets.
  • The 9 weapons of mass influence that cause people to BUY (they’ll be the cornerstone of your successful launch)
  • How to use the Seed Launch to get paid BEFORE you even start your business (or create a product)

Plus you also get some amazing bonuses.

Whether you already have a business or are just getting started Launch truly is your recipe book for success.

As legendary entrepreneur and star of Shark Tank Daymond John said,

“Surround yourself with a team of advisors [who] have the same agenda. Do homework. Research every single thing that you are doing. Take affordable next steps. Take a step forward, learn and then repeat.”

If I could pick just one advisor in the entire world it would be Jeff Walker.

#2 Tap Into Insane Income Working from Home

shandabannerThere really is a way for you to work from home, make good money, and actually have a life.

Here’s my personal endorsement.  I know Shanda Sumpter. A few years ago I hopped a plane to California to co-create a product with her and have personally witnessed how she has built a business that gives her true freedom.

Shanda doesn’t just pitch it; she’s someone who has figured out a formula that works for any business that produces a lot of FREE TIME!

Put it this way…


Shanda does triathlons which means she works out 17 hours a week (and it shows!).

She also takes off every third week, checks out over December to go skiing in Canada and spend the holidays with her family.

She also has a full staff, makes millions of dollars, and is extremely determined to show you how to build your business so that you can “HAVE a bigger LIFE”!

She’s also one of the most genuine people I know.

Here’s what Shanda is doing that I think you should check out.

Making money and having money should give you freedom. There IS a way that you can set yourself up for that.

Most free giveaways are TRAPS to get you to buy something.

I promise you this ISN’T. Anything offered on this Free Training is well worth your time and investment.

Plus, you don’t have to buy anything to attend and learn.

Go here now to REGISTER for Shanda’s Exposed Livestream Training.

And get ready to live a Bigger Life!

The Bottom Line

Finally, if you really want to change course there are two super important things you need to know about business ideas.

1)   Embrace the liberating power of multiple streams of income

I wasted a lot of years searching for that one Big Idea that would generate enough income to completely replace my corporate salary.

But once I turned my attention to building smaller profit centers, over time I not only matched my former salary, I far surpassed it.

2)   Think small

Everyone is so hung up on how they’re going to make their first $50,000-$100,000 that they don’t do anything.

What if instead you focused on making your first $500 or $1,000?

The fact is if you can make $500 or $1,000 a month, then you can figure out how to grow that into significantly more.

But you have to start — somewhere. So let it be here!

Want to Be a Changing Course Opportunity Detective!

Have you come across a cool business idea or income-generating resource you’d like to share? Send it to [email protected]

Better yet – share it here on the Changing Course blog!

It’s Never Too Late to Re-Learn Important Stuff

It’s been a while since I sent this newsletter.

In fact, even I was surprised to discover the last issue was last June!

Instead I’ve been sharing ideas and resources largely through short blog posts.

Today I felt tugged to return to my roots.

Roots that began when I published the first Changing Course newsletter way back in 1995.

(Okay now I feel old!)

cokievalThis is Cokie and me in the early days.

Cokie was probably three-years-old in this picture. Now he’s 15.

At least I can still see and hear. Cokie… not so much. But gratefully the old guy is hanging on.

A lot has happened since 1995. Heck, a lot’s happened since my last newsletter!

Over the last few months I’ve had opportunities to re-learn two important lessons.

Lessons that can help you realize your own dream of working at what you love, living life on purpose, and following your own road.

Know When Good Enough Is Good Enough

Is chronic perfectionism killing your dream?

Are you waiting for everything to be absolutely perfect before you launch your great idea… your small business… your new LIFE?

Maybe you want to start a blog or write a book or give motivational talks. But instead you endlessly tinker and tweak and adjust, making sure everything is just so… but never begin.

Trust me I’ve been there.

Over the years though, I’ve learned that all my high-minded notions of “quality standards” and “getting it right” really just equaled paralysis.

On the whole, the male entrepreneurs I know operate from a very different definition of quality. The mantra repeated by multi-millionaire speakers at the numerous marketing seminars I’ve attended always comes down to some variation of this:

“You don’t have to get it right you just have to get it going.”

One marketing guru went even further telling procrastinating perfectionists that, “Half ass is better than no ass.”

His wording may be crass but the fundamental truth remains:

If you wait for everything to be perfect you’ll never act.

Whether it’s a product, a service, or an idea, you have to put version one out there, get some feedback, improve on it, and then create a new and improved version from there.

You can always course correct as you go.

But at some point you must decide it really is good enough.

It’s a lesson I relearned just last week while recording a presentation.

I spent the better part of a day doing dry runs before finally hitting the dreaded “Record” button.

Everything was going great until around the 35 minute mark, and I coughed.

Could I have stopped and re-recorded the whole thing? Yup.

And if someone had hired me to create the video I would have.

But this was a free video I produced for a select group of people who want to learn more about an upcoming training program on how to get paid to brainstorm.

So instead I kept going.

Earlier in my entrepreneurial journey I would have been compelled to make it perfect.

Instead I chose to think most viewers would forgive the cough.

And to recognize instead the considerable effort I put into finding statistics about the boom in the numbers of people embracing self-employment and the examples of creative business ideas.

Plus the entire second half of the video is basically a free marketing lesson.

Lessons I knew this audience could use to launch or to grow a business regardless of whether they ultimately sign up to train with me or not.

So yes, I coughed. And guess what? Life went on.

Don’t Get Too Wedded to Your Dream

In October I realized a long-held dream of getting onto Oprah’s radar when I was interviewed for O magazine on how to feel more confidence.

omagazineWhen the issue finally came out I was so excited I babbled to the cashier, the other customers at the newsstand, truly anyone with a pulse – “I’m in this magazine!!!”

As honored as I was, in all honestly, my real dream was to be a guest on Oprah’s TV show.

But the show ended its 25 year run a mere two months after my book came out. Talk about a near miss.

What I learned from this experience is that people don’t fail to achieve a dream.

The failure is giving up when things don’t turn out the way we imagined.

I’ve had plenty of clients who fantasized about owning a bed and breakfast, but they didn’t have the money to buy their own place.

Happily, some discovered it much more satisfying (and less stressful) to have B&B owners who need a break to pay them to be bed and breakfast sitters instead.

Others realized that the part they really liked was the idea of decorating the place. Washing sheets and making breakfast at 6am… not so much. So they pursued decorating instead.

As the Rolling Stones reminded us, “You can’t always get what you want. But if you try sometime, you just might get what you need.”

5 Ways to Fund Your Dream Part 5

When it comes to changing course, money – or rather the lack of it – stops a lot of people in their tracks.

So to help, I’ve put together a five-part series on creative ways to fund your dream.

You may not be able to take advantage of every idea or resource.  In fact, none of the five ideas may be right for you and your personal situation. You need to read them anyway. Why?

First, the strategy that may not be a fit for you today may indeed be the one that launches your dream a few years from now.

Second, just knowing that options truly do exist will remind you that your crazy dream is not so crazy after all.

And finally, one of the ideas or resources you see here may be perfect for someone you know. Pass it on and you just might change a life!

Strategy #5: Know Your Options

3102014_1Ever wondered how most successful small business owners get the money to launch?

Entrepreneur magazine did and what they found might surprise you!

Of businesses less than five years old, with annual sales in excess of $1 million, a whopping 69 percent started out by using their own money to fund their business.

3102014_2Going it alone, pulling yourself and your business up by your bootstraps otherwise known as “bootstrapping” is all about getting things done while spending as little as possible and not raising outside financing.

That’s why the first four ideas in this series focused on small ways for you to bootstrap your dream. (If you missed these, then start here.)

But bootstrapping isn’t your only option.

You have five basic options for finding the money to fund your entrepreneurial dream:

OPTION 1: Using Your Own Money

OPTION 2: Debt Financing – Borrowing with the expectation that you will repay the loan

  • Borrowing from friends and family
  • Borrowing money from a bank
  • Borrowing from a micro-lender

OPTION 3: Equity Financing – Getting others to invest in your dream in exchange for a financial stake in your business

  • Friends and Family
  • Other “Small” Investors
  • Angel Investors/Professional Investors/Venture Capitalists

OPTION 4: Getting a grant

  • Private Grants
  • Government Grants and Other Assistance
  • Grants for Social Entrepreneurs
  • Grants and Funding for Creative Types
  • Grants for Non-profits

OPTION 5: Crowdfunding via sites like Kickstarter or Indigogo

  • Friends and family
  • Your social network
  • Total strangers who support your dream

You can stick to just one option. For instance, I bootstrapped the start-up of Changing Course and then continually re-invested earnings back into the business as needed.

Or you can put together various combinations.

Say you wanted to open an art gallery. You could kick in some of your own money, get a loan from your Aunt Gracie, and secure a grant from a local arts council.

So what option do successful small business people use? According to that same Entrepreneur survey:

  • Private investors — 21 percent
  • Friends and family — 21 percent
  • Line of credit from a bank (presumably using their home or other property as collateral) — 18 percent
  • Bank loans — 12 percent
  • Credit cards — 10 percent

Know How Much You Need

3102014_3Before you can even consider how you’ll get the funds, you need to know how much money you need.

If your goal is to start a small, one-person, home-based business as say a freelance writer, consultant/coach, or web designer then you’ll probably need relatively little start-up money. In this case Option 1 – bootstrapping is the way to go.

But what if you have what I call a “Big Dream”? In the past I’ve worked with clients who wanted to:

  • Open a dude ranch in the Canadian Rockies
  • Start a non-profit to help impoverished people in South Africa sell their crafts
  • Renovate a historic building into a multi-purpose art space

Big dreams tend to involve things like looking at things like renting or purchasing property, hiring employees, finding donors, travel expenses, and/or purchasing equipment or inventory – all of which require more start-up capital.

So here you’ll probably need to borrow money, find investors, seek corporate sponsorship, or all three.

In other words, the amount of money you need to change course depends on your business needs and your plans for growth.

Assess Your Entire Situation

3102014_4Once you know how much money you’ll need, you need to decide which funding option is right for you. Which strategy you choose depends on three things:

1) Your current financial obligations or circumstances

2) Your comfort level with risk

3) How quickly you want to change course

For example:

  • If you have a couple of kids about to enter college you’re in a very different financial situation than if you’re a 21-year-old who just graduated college and is living at home
  • If you’re the sole provider of a family, either as a single parent or part of a two-parent family, you’re in a different situation than someone who is only responsible for themselves
  • If you’re an individual that makes a lot of money but are drowning in credit card debt, you face different challenges than if you earn far less but spend within your means
  • If you find yourself faced with a “once in a lifetime” chance to purchase a special piece of property or a coveted business that’s up for sale then you may be willing to take out a loan, court investors, or otherwise assume a greater financial risk in order to seize the day

The Benefits of Bootstrapping

Even if you ultimately decide to use other options, starting out, the easiest way to fund your new business is to use your own money.

After all, you don’t have to fill out any applications or worry about your credit score. There are no investors to try to woo. And you don’t have to worry about repaying anyone.

At least that’s what Shep and Ian Murray discovered.

After graduating college the two brothers felt stifled in their respective Manhattan desk jobs. They longed for the laid back days of summer they’d spent as kids on Martha’s Vineyard.

3102014_5So inspired by the mega-success of another Massachusetts island business Nantucket Nectars, they quit their jobs in 1998, took a $7,000 cash advance from their credit cards, and launched designer neck tie business Vineyard Vines.

In true bootstrapping style, they ran the business themselves for the first two years. Today they have a whole team of employees.

Things have really accelerated in the last five years. The Murray’s went from a single Edgartown retail store to:

  • Having their ties worn by every living president as well as other high-profilers as John Kerry, New York Mayors Rudy Giuliani and Michael Bloomberg and financier Warren Buffett
  • They’re on track to generate $100 million in sales thanks in large part to the decision to invest in their business by expanding to offer a complete clothing line for men, women, and children
  • Doubled the number of stores to 20, including new locations as far away as Plano, Texas, and Newport Beach, California
  • And signed licensing deals with the NFL, NHL, and MLB
  • And Vineyard Vines’ clothing is the “official style” of the Kentucky Derby

Not bad for a couple of bootstrappers!

Whether you want to build an empire as the Murray’s ultimately did, or are just looking to start a small self-sustaining business, the fundamental steps to funding a business remain the same.

Step 1:  Believe in your dream

Step 2: Find a way to fund it that best fits your situation and goals

Step 3: Take action!

Ready to start bootstrapping your own dream? Start with one of these strategies from the entire 5 Ways to Fund Your Dream series:

Strategy 1: Find a Contest Related to Your Dream and Enter It
Strategy 2: Get Your Priorities Straight
Strategy 3: Make and Stash Some Extra Cash is available
Strategy 4: Barter

Page 3 of 6First...234...Last


A New Direction

I decided to take the Work @ What You Love Workshop and also work one-on-one with Valerie. The workshop explored so many unusual and unexpected solutions to my specific questions. I made so many new connections to what clearly works for me in crea...

Julia Raymond
Curvology Studio

Read More Testimonials »

Facebook Twitter RSS
(413) 203-9754

Pin It on Pinterest