Welcome to episode 87 of the Food Blogger Pro podcast! This week, Bjork chats with Andy Traub, a business coach who specializes in helping you take permission in your career.
Last week, Bjork interiewed Jon Acuff. They talked about making a slow, deliberate career change and eventually quitting your job. To go back and listen to that episode, click here.
How to Take Permission and Grow Your Business
The phrase “take permission” might settle a bit weird in your brain. Don’t you ask for permission?
That’s exactly what Andy’s all about. He feels that for your business to really thrive, you have to be comfortable with simply taking permission. Take permission to start. Take permission to invest. Take permission to learn. This mindset is crucial to not only finding success as an entrepreneur, but also finding out what your best, most useful skills and roles are in your business. With this mindset, you can really see your business grow.
In this episode, Andy shares:
- What inspired him to work for himself
- How he got started with his business
- What it means to take permission
- The hard, ugly truth about internet marketing
- How to genuinely connect with influencers
- Why he makes short, simple courses
- What is more important than simply following the footsteps of successful people
- Take Permission
- 48 Days by Dan Miller
- Episode 064: Finding work you love with Dan Miller from 48 Days
- Making Money On-line; It’s Not As Easy Or As Difficult As You Think
- Andy’s Short Courses
- Reach by Andy Molinsky
- Strengths Finder
- Read to Lead podcast
- Tribe Writers course by Jeff Goins
If you have any comments, questions, or suggestions for interviews, be sure to email them to [email protected].
Be sure to review us on iTunes!
If you’d like to jump to the comments section, click here.
Bjork Ostrom: In this episode I’m talking with Andy Traub from Take Permission. We’re chatting about everything from how faith influences business, the differences between Spock and Captain Kirk, and the tool that has been most helpful for Andy as he’s grown his online business.
Hey everybody, it is Bjork Ostrom and, as a matter of fact, we are going to be talking about my name at the very beginning of this podcast episode because Andy is somebody who knows me, knows my name, it’s kind of a complicated name to say. Bjork in and of itself is hard and then Ostrom should be Ostrum. We talk about that and I kind of have an identity crisis. Should it be Ostrum, should it be Ostrom? It’s Ostrom, but technically I think it should be Ostrum as we will discuss in a little bit.
But I’m excited to share this podcast with you because Andy is not only a good friend, but he’s a really smart person and he’s also somebody who’s been successful in building a business online. And in a way that you don’t often see people build a business online and he’s going to talk about some of the nuances of that so I’m excited to jump into this interview. And let’s go ahead and do that. Without further adieu, Andy, welcome to the podcast.
Andy Traub: Bjork, it is always good to be with you. Do you know what I did yesterday?
Bjork Ostrom: What did you do?
Andy Traub: That involved your name?
Bjork Ostrom: No, no I don’t know.
Andy Traub: I taught my phone how to say your name.
Bjork Ostrom: Oh, you did?
Andy Traub: Because I have a friend … I don’t know if you knew this or not but you can teach Siri how to say a name.
Bjork Ostrom: I stumbled across it once and then I tried to do it again another time but I couldn’t figure out what I needed to say to Siri.
Andy Traub: Okay, so as an example if Siri said … I said, “Call Bjork Ostrom.”
Bjork Ostrom: Mm-hmm (affirmative)
Andy Traub: And she would say, “Calling Bjork Ostrum.”
Bjork Ostrom: Yes.
Andy Traub: And then I would just say that, “Siri, I want to teach you how to say Bjork Ostrom.”
Bjork Ostrom: Oh, interesting.
Andy Traub: That’s all you do. And then she comes back to you and says, “Okay, Andy. How do you say the name … ” And then on the screen it says, “Bjork.” And then she says, “Is that correct? Are you going to try to teach me how to say Bjork Ostrom?” And I say, “Yes.” She says, “Okay, how do you say the name … ” And then it says Bjork on the screen and then it listens and I say, “Bjork.” And then it processes and it comes up with like three options and then you listen to each one and then you select which one you want it to say.
Bjork Ostrom: It’s really cool and like I said it was an accident when I ended up on that screen. I don’t remember how it happened, but it was like, “Oh!”
Andy Traub: It’s like the most intuitive Siri thing that exists.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah.
Andy Traub: You’re like, “Oh how are you doing?” You say, “I want to teach you how to do this.”
Bjork Ostrom: That’s all that it is.
Andy Traub: But that’s all that it is.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. Well we had this conversation, this is a little bit of a rabbit trail but I feel like you said it.
Andy Traub: This is a series of rabbit trails so if you are not a fan of rabbits or trails …
Bjork Ostrom: This is all that we’re going to be doing.
Andy Traub: It’s a lot of rabbit trails.
Bjork Ostrom: So last name Ostrom, right?
Andy Traub: Yes.
Bjork Ostrom: Lindsey and I had this conversation the other day and we were like, I think if you were to use phonetically sounded out it would probably be Ostrum and we had this identity crisis of, “Have we just been saying it wrong forever?” ’Cause Siri says it Ostrum, but we’re like, you can’t just decide … I mean, you could, but it’d be really weird to decide one day, like, “Oh.”
Andy Traub: You are like the only person I’ve ever heard that actually like gave Siri credibility, right? Like, “Oh, Siri did that.” The assumption is that Siri sucks. My kids will say that like, “Dad, Google it, Siri sucks. Ask Amazon, Siri sucks.” Yeah, she kind of does, kids.
Bjork Ostrom: But in this case I think it would probably be like if you were to ask me, “How do you say Ostrom?” I would say Ostrum if it wasn’t my last name.
Andy Traub: Yeah, so we’re all wrong.
Bjork Ostrom: That doesn’t apply to what we’re going to talk about today other than the fact that you’re able to easily say my name because we have a long history. Sometimes I do podcast interviews and you’ll know because they’ll never say your name.
Andy Traub: They’re like, “It’s great to meet you, B-Jork.”
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah or they just won’t say it the entire time. Like they just won’t ever say your name.
Andy Traub: “Bro, it’s good to be with you bro.”
Bjork Ostrom: Yes, exactly.
Andy Traub: “Buddy, pal.”
Bjork Ostrom: But we have a history together. We know each other, we have overlapped paths a few different times, but before we jump into the interview I love to hear the person I’m talking with, their story. So wondering if you can take a minute to fill people in on kind of the SparkNotes version of your journey.
Andy Traub: Yeah, I think it’s helpful to begin in a place that might overlap some of your listeners. That’s sort of with my work. When I was in college, my whole life, my dad had worked with insurance companies in Downtown Indianapolis. Get up, do the commute, put on the suit and tie. Then he was at Safeco, that’s Safeco Field in Seattle for a while, but big insurance company, and they had some layoffs. And he made it through the first couple layers of layoffs. And I think he was in his late 50s. Maybe mid 50s … yeah, maybe mid 50s at this time. And I was talking to my mom ’cause I was at college, and I said, “They’re gonna have another round of layoffs, right?” And she said, “Yep, your dad will be either home, cleaning the gutters today at noon,” which means they let him go, “or he’ll be home at 5.” Right? As usually is, or 5:30 or whatever. And I called at like, 1, maybe 2, and I said, “So what happened?” And she said, “Well, the gutters are clean.”
Bjork Ostrom: Hmm. Well.
Andy Traub: And I remember another time in my life when my dad … I don’t know what happened to his company, but he’s working at Target for a while, and god bless those who work at Target, but my dad went from … he wasn’t like, a manager. He was just working at Target ’cause he just had to have something in between. And it showed me … and I get it, like I get it, Safeco Life, that’s the company you are, but my dad lost his job because he was in his mid to late 50s, I think at the time, and they could pay two new guys half as much, right? So you get two new guys for the price of one Jerry, right? So they fired him, ’cause he’s a number. And so I, after college, went into ministry, but when I decided to really work on my own, a large part of my story as people ask me how you’ve been able to work for yourself for ten years … actually, nine years, is that drive of I never wanted anyone to be able to say, “You’re done here.”
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah, it’s a different view of job security, right? And I think usually, you’d think of job security as having a really secure 9 to 5 job that you come into, and I think it’s definitely a type of job security, but there’s the reality that that job, once it’s done, however that happens, fired, let go, or you quit, then that stream of income is done. And that job security can very quickly vanish, as opposed to in your situation where you have to work extremely hard and you’re working for yourself and it’s more difficult in terms of decision-making, potentially. You have to figure out what you work on next, how much you work on that, what’s the best thing to do. All of those things that come with being an entrepreneur and building your own thing, but you’re diversified and the job security looks different in that you are responsible to you, as opposed to somebody else that can decide what you do.
Andy Traub: And I would also submit that some people are better suited to be in a traditional employment setting, but one of the things that people don’t tell you in this sexy pursuit of entrepreneurship is sometimes your boss is an idiot. And you’re that boss. Right? Like, you’re self-employed, and you’re like, “This sucks,” and you realize like, “I’m the master of my own ship, and I’m off course.” Right?
Bjork Ostrom: Uh-huh. Yep. There’s nobody to blame but yourself.
Andy Traub: Yeah. Absolutely. I only struggle with that on days that end with Y. Right? Other than that, I’m fine.
Bjork Ostrom: Meaning every single day.
Andy Traub: Yeah. For those of you who are keeping track at home, or maybe this is the English version, in Spanish, whatever.
Bjork Ostrom: Wouldn’t be the same.
Andy Traub: But yeah, so yes, I have total control, but that also means I can steer it in the wrong way. That means I don’t have all the necess- There’s a reason there’s different departments in a company, ’cause there’s people with different gifts. And when you become your own company, you’re all the departments, and you’re not good at all of them. So these are all things I’ve been figuring out. I almost said “figured” but that’s not true … that I’m figuring out after nine years or so of self-employment, including some stints of actually going to work for some people to see if that would be the right fit. And we’ll talk about that later, sort of how I play well with others maybe better than I do alone.
Bjork Ostrom: So take me back to nine years ago. So you’re making the transition, you said, “I had no one to do this.” What did that look like?
Andy Traub: That’s an awesome story. So yeah, I was working with Young Life full time. I became a Christian to Young Life, love the really just relational style of the ministry. It wasn’t like, “Hey, come to our thing.” I was a great water boy for a lot of different teams, I tutored in school, so I was substitute teacher. I loved the relational aspect of it. And so after college, I went into full-time ministry and it was great. And then I read a book by Dan Miller, who’s now a very good friend, it’s called 48 Days of the Work You Love.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah, and we interviewed Dan on the podcast, so it’d be a good one for people to check out.
Andy Traub: Great. Absolutely. Dan Miller. Very, very wise man. And so it didn’t take me 48 days, ’cause I was super impatient and I’m not a good planner. And so I quit my job much quicker than that, and I actually, right when I was reading that book, I’d gone into maybe … I think maybe then, I’d switched to investments ’cause I was doing Dave Ramsey stuff, and I was like, “Oh, I can handle money,” and I wasn’t really great at that either. But the switch really was … the day I really became truly self-employed, I remember coming home and saying to my wife, “Honey, I need to talk to you, because I made a really big decision today.” She’s like, “Okay, well I gotta tell you something too.” And I was like, “Okay, well you first.” And she’s like, “We’re pregnant.” And I was like, “Okay! Well, I want to quit my job.” You know? So here’s my yin to your yang. Yay, celebrate, and then how it’s … So anyway, it worked out. But yeah, I remember it because my son is gonna be nine in two weeks and it was … when we found out we were pregnant, so nine years plus however many months …
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah, and a very memorable way for that to be revealed on both ends for sure.
Andy Traub: Yeah, I won’t forget that one.
Bjork Ostrom: So tell me about, did you know you were gonna get into- And one of the things that we talk about a lot on the podcast, just for those that are listening for the first time, is this idea of transitions, and I think everybody’s always in some state of transition whether it’s with your career and you’re wanting to work in a little bit of a different area, or transitions from like, “I want to be working for myself,” or transition from being a stay-at-home mom or stay-at-home dad to like, creating some income on the side. Always transitions. So, that transition for you sounded like it was relatively quick, right? You said 48 days condensed, so what did that look like?
Andy Traub: It was relatively quick. Yeah. So I started reading the book and within 30 days, I was like, “I want to work for myself.” And I think I had started to do a little side hustle work where maybe I was telling people the websites and … this was back when it took 37 steps to install WordPress instead of like, one. Now it’s like, “Click to install WordPress,” and then it was like, all these steps that I learned from my friend Kirk. And he like, wrote them all down for me and I just followed them. I had no idea what I was doing. He was like, “You want a website?” I’m like, “Yeah, I got to follow these steps from Kirk.” And then it wouldn’t work, and I would have to call Kirk and get help.
So I was just doing sort of social media consulting, website building … I don’t even know, it was crazy. I don’t even know how I made a living.
Bjork Ostrom: And at that point, had you launched your blog?
Andy Traub: I had launched like, nothing. I think it was AndyTraub.com maybe then.
Bjork Ostrom: Sure. So when did Take Permission come around? And can you tell me the story behind that? What does “Take Permission” mean?
Andy Traub: Yeah, Take Permission is- and I like to tell a story that a lot of people might relate to, which is for those who have seen Shawshank Redemption, there’s a scene in that movie where Morgan Freeman- sorry if you haven’t seen it, but you’ve had like, 25 years- spoiler, he gets out at some point. And he’s out, and he’s working at a grocery store, and he raises his hand, and the boss says, “Yeah, what do you need?” And so he goes over and talks to the boss, he says, “Hey boss, can I go pee?” And he’s like, “Yeah, you can go, but hey man, you don’t have to ask me to go pee. You can just go pee.” And Morgan Freeman’s a bagger at a grocery store. And the next shot is him thinking to himself in his Morgan Freeman voice, of course, which we all love. And it’s “No matter how many times, I try, I have to ask for permission or I can’t pee a drop.”
And the truth of his life, and many of our lives, is that we have been conditioned to ask for permission before we do things. And I’m talking about going to the bathroom. Because when you’re a little kid, they actually train you, you cannot stand up and leave the room unless you raise your hand and ask permission to go to the bathroom. And I sort of simmer on that idea, and I go, “What would happen to our educational system if we changed that?” Are kids going to abuse it? Maybe. But the bottom line is, even at a very young age, we are taught to ask permission to go do something pretty natural, right? And I think that that continues in our educational system, it continues in our- And we start to kill the idea that we should ever take permission. We should just ask permission again and again and again and again.
And so the idea of Take Permission is born out of a lot of different reading, of influences of people like Dan Miller, Dave Ramsey, Seth Goden. People like Chris Gillabo and other people I’ve interacted with and are able to call friends in a lot of ways now. People that have the future that most of us want have one thing in common. And it’s they took permission. No one said, “Hey, you should do that thing.” They all started doing it. Right? And so that’s how I started doing what I was doing, is I just started doing it. I just started helping people because I love technology so much, and then I was able to start charging people for that. And as I continued to grow my skills, I was able to charge for different things and create different things and partner with different people. And that’s really been the last nine and a half years, is I just continued to take permission.
Bjork Ostrom: And I would love to jump into some specifics around that in a little bit. One of the things I’m interested to hear you talk about as long as we’re on this subject is were there things that you had to unlearn that you remember specifically, or do you feel like it was a slow transition due to the books that you had read and the influences that you had specifically around taking permission?
Andy Traub: I think it’s just always hard. I wrote a post like last week about this. Making money online’s a lot easier and a lot harder than anyone says it is. And the easier part is that we’re all capable, we all have some gift or skill that we could put online and someone would pay for it. But the harder part is the process of doing that or getting the guts to or building the tribe, is a lot harder than people … it’s not like, “Oh, you have a thousand hours? Buy some Facebook ads and you’ll make ten thousand dollars.” It’s not that simple. Vegas makes it sound that simple. Why? ’Cause Vegas doesn’t lose. So it all is a sort of form of gambling, right? And so this idea and this development, it has really been, and it’s totally cliché, but it really is sometimes one step forward, two steps back. I do not have a path, and maybe people will turn off the show after this, but I don’t have a path that I can say, “Go do this, and this will work.” And I think the more that people are actually trying to build their own platform or build their own business, the less appealing and realistic things like the four-hour work week are ’cause they go, “Wow, you make it sound so easy.” And then they get in and they go, “Wait a minute.”
Bjork Ostrom: This is so much work.
Andy Traub: It’s not that easy. Now, is it worth it? Am I complaining? Is it worth it? Yes. Am I complaining? I hope not, ’cause I’m abundantly blessed, but I sort of take on this position that I’m sort of the prophet of this space and that I’m gonna tell the hard, ugly truth about internet marketing. And I’m an internet marketer. I make money on the internet. But I also have this, I feel like, moral calling to call B.S. when people are being deceptive in the way they sell. And that’s another part of taking permission. Nobody said, “Andy, you should be the industry watchdog.” But I don’t care, I took permission. And so I write about deceptive things that people do, and then I don’t do those things. And I’ll tell you what, Bjork, very very common reason that people buy my stuff is they say, “Andy, I feel like you actually care about me and my success versus you’re just trying to pressure me into a sale.” Where I think the vast majority of people who buy things do so because they feel a pressure in an unhealthy way.
Bjork Ostrom: Right. And that’s one of the things that I most appreciate about you, following you, and being connected to you is just this genuine-ness that seeps through what you’re doing. There’s actually a Facebook post, it was Instagram went to Facebook, that you posted that I saw that I just really appreciated. I want to read a little bit of that.
So you talked about hosting webinars and you said, “I’ve helped host webinars with 2,000 people that have netted $50,000 in less than an hour. It’s never been on my own platform, though,” and then you said, “Tonight, I had nine people attend a webinar. Earlier today, I had fourteen. I sold six products and netted $522.” And then you said, “I’m not discouraged. I made a great product, it’s helping people. I’ve got great possibilities with some joint ventures.” You go on to talk about some of the things with that webinar and that experience, why it was good, but saying, “Making great stuff takes time. Building credibility, trust, expertise takes time. Keep shipping, the world needs what you can make.” Stuff like that, I think, is so refreshing because it’s so uncommon for people to hear that. And usually you hear the extremes on the other end, so can you talk a little bit about why you feel like it’s important to be genuine, authentic, to be the role that you’ve taken on, industry watchdog?
Andy Traub: Last night I was in my cul-de-sac playing all-time quarterback, which is one of the advantages of being the dad in the cul-de-sac.
Bjork Ostrom: One of the greatest roles of all time.
Andy Traub: My whole life, I wanted to be the all-time quarterback, and now I’m 39 and I get to be the all-time quarterback. But my phone rang, and I shouldn’t have my phone out there anyway, but I had my phone in my back pocket, I pick it up.
I used to live in South Dakota, and there’s a lot of spam scam numbers from South Dakota. And so unfortunately, I usually pick it up, ’cause I think, “Is this someone from South Dakota?” Well, usually it’s a scammer. And it was this recording of this woman saying, “Hello, hello?” And it was like, legitimate. And I was like, “Hello?” And she was like, “Oh, I’m sorry, I was trying to get my headset on. There was a problem.” And I realized it’s a recording. They have a system that waits for you to talk before it starts talking. And so I put it on speakerphone ’cause I realized, and I said, “Boys, listen. This is a scam.” And they’re like, “What’s a scam?” And I’m doing this like, teachable moment.
She’s like, “Have you ever wanted to go on a vacation? Yes or no?” And I’m like, “Yes!” And I go, “Boys, tell her how excited you are about the vacation,” so we start responding. And after three minutes of this quote-unquote “person,” we get transferred to a real person. And it’s Chris in Orlando, ’cause she has to figure out if we’re over 18, if we have a credit card, and blah-blah-blah-blah. And so I get transferred to a real human person in Orlando, and I say, “Chris?” He says, “Hey, this is Chris in Orlando. You ready for your vacation?” ’Cause that’s, the whole thing is they’re selling me a vacation. I said, “Chris, I was all-time quarterback, and you interrupted our game. I need you to take me off of your list. And have a good night. God bless.” He’s like, “Okay, thanks.”
And my point is this: they make their money by preying on the weaknesses of people. Preying on people that are just not sharp enough to know that woman didn’t really have trouble with her headset. It’s a recording. That there was a technology that waits for you to respond and then goes on with the next question. It’s preying on the worst of people, and I would submit, Bjork, that a lot of people, even if they have good intentions, are using practices that prey on the worst of people.
And I’m not saying- and I say this literally, it’s six after twelve central time- my Master Evernote Course, was the cart is supposed to close six minutes ago. I didn’t close it because we’re on this interview, but I will close the cart at that time. But there’s these practices in the industry that will teach you, “Then you send an email tomorrow, and say, ‘Well, I had a problem with my processor, and so I’m opening it one more day.’ Or ‘You won’t believe it, my team talked me into letting you try it another day for a dollar.’” And my whole thing is, you’re lying. You’re manipulating. And here’s the thing: you will sell- I really believe this. I actually believe this. You will sell less if you don’t manipulate. Some people are like, altruistic, they’re like, “No, you’ll sell more!” No, I think you’ll sell less if you are really, truly pure in your marketing. I really, really do. But I sleep really well at night.
And I think the industry standard has now become that we just live in the gray. I’m all about creating scarcity as in I’m gonna close the cart at this time, because I want people to make a buying decision, and what do you know, that does work. But I’m talking about the fake-timers. I’m talking about using testimonials that are not your average user. I’m talking about courses that have a 2–3% completion rate with a .01 success rate, and then they say, “Thousands of people have taken this course.” No, thousands of people have bought the course. And can you imagine going into a surgery or going to a school that says, “Hey, we’re gonna cost this much money, and our success rate’s .01.” We would never do that. And I think my concern is that because they’re so good at selling, they’re so good at marketing, they’re so good at understanding human behavior, that their consumer is really at a disadvantage. And so that’s, I think, the world of internet marketing right now. And a lot of those people are my friends. They’re good people. I think they have good intentions, but because they really want to maximize that profit, they do crap like that. And I talk about that and I don’t do those things.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. Yeah. And I think it’s encouraging to hear that and refreshing to hear that, and I think that there is a reality with … as you had said that you sell less potentially or you’d be able to build things not as quickly, but I also think that it’s noticeable. One of the things I thought about was you had mentioned Dave Ramsey, and I don’t even remember what it was, but I had signed up for a free trial of something that he had, and I remember specifically getting an email a day or two before the charge was gonna happen, and saying, “Hey, just a reminder: in two days, we’re gonna charge your card.” And I still remember it. And it was probably like, eight years ago that that happened and I remember, “God, that’s so awesome.” And it influenced us with Food Blogger Pro, which was our only recurring membership thing. We’ve decided we’re gonna send out, whenever somebody’s charged, we send out a confirmation as opposed to not sending out a confirmation and then people seeing six months later that they’ve been continually getting charged.
But what hurts me on the business side is knowing we have a turn rate of 10–12%, and that would go drastically down is people weren’t notified. But it’s like, I know that I wouldn’t feel good about not notifying people that they are being charged. So I hear what you’re saying and I totally get that, and I understand that. And also, I understand that for you, seeing other recommendations or advice around doing it and then feeling like, “Well, I don’t feel like I can do that.” So, point being, I really respect that and appreciate that and it’s noticed.
Andy Traub: Thanks, man.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. So, I want to talk to you a little bit, one more thing about your story that I’d be interested to hear. I know that you recently, within a few years at least now, you were a midwest person, right? So you’re up here in cold midwest, you were South Dakota, I was Minnesota. There’s one day where we each drove a couple hours and met up in the middle of a random coffee shop, which was awesome. And you’ve recently made the move the Nashville. So I’m interested to hear what was some of your thinking behind that? Obviously a big move, maybe tied into some business decisions, maybe not. Maybe weather decisions, but I’m interested to hear what that’s been like, that kind of process has been like.
Andy Traub: Well, I’ll give a bullet point, ’cause there’s a lot to cover there. I live south of Nashville by about 30 minutes in a town called Springhill. So if anyone ever owned a Saturn- you owned a Saturn, didn’t you?
Bjork Ostrom: I had a Ford Escort ZX2 Sport edition, which meant that it had a little spoiler on it.
Andy Traub: Okay. All right. Sport. Spoiler, there you go.
But so if anyone’s ever bought a Saturn, that’s where they were made. They were made here in Springhill, like a quarter mile from my house. So it’s a suburb of Nashville because Nashville is really expensive. And so we live about 30 minutes south of the city, really close to Franklin, which is where a lot of my friends and fellow entrepreneurs live. And we moved here because I have business contacts here, friends, fellow entrepreneurs and creators, and I was coming three to four times a year for different things with them and sometimes just to hang out. And every time I’d leave, I’d go, “This is a really, really great place to live. I’d love to live here.” And so I just asked my wife one day, “What do you think about that idea?” And I didn’t pressure her, and she came around, which is really miraculous, ’cause her whole family is from South Dakota and we love Sioux Falls. I still love Sioux Falls, I wish Sioux Falls sucked, because then I wouldn’t miss it so much. But it’s a great place to live, great place to raise a family, but we came here because the weather is like a thousand times better and it’s been really good. It’s been hard. It’s been hard in a lot of ways, but that’s why God made good marriage counselors and good friends and good neighbors and cul-de-sacs, so all things will be fixed or are fixable.
Bjork Ostrom: And I appreciate that. That’s one of the things with you that you’re just open about saying, “Hey, we’ve made this move. There’s some really good things with it, there’s some hard things with it.” But one of the things I think is so interesting is that you had these relationships there and one of the things I’ve noticed about you, Andy, is that you’re really good at establishing relationships with people that would be influencers, right? So they’re people that are recognized in their certain industry. So you talked about Dan Miller, you read his book, and then suddenly you’re like, partners with him on projects. Or I know that you’re connected with, some people might know, Michael Hyatt, who’s a popular person in the platform and online marketing space. I interviewed Jon Acuff the other day, and I said, “Yeah, you’re connected with Andy.” He was like, “Oh, I love Andy!” And it’s a skill to be able to connect with people and establish genuine relationships and to be … I would love for you to talk about what that’s … how you approach that, how you do that. What would your advice be to people that want to connect?
Andy Traub: So somebody told me once, “If you could figure out how to sell a course on that, you’d be a millionaire.” And it gets to the root of why I hate courses- I mean, I make courses, like I sell courses, but it gets to the root of like, you can’t duplicate everything. Like, remember this, friends: when someone says, “You should use Facebook Live, because I get hundreds of thousands of blah-blah-blah,” how many followers did they have to begin with? Did they grow because of Facebook Live, or they just turned it on and it worked? And so when I have these friendships with people, I think the only real way to do that is … there’s probably two or three things.
Number one is, influencers don’t need more fans. They need people that affirm that what they’re teaching is true. So if you really want to impress them, don’t say, “I love your book.” Say, “I took what you told me to do in that book, and I did it. And this is how it changed my family. This is how it changed my community. This is how it changed my life.” Then they’ll say, “Wow. I’m listening.” Right?
So, one of the reasons John and I are friends, you know, we talked after the Patriots win, and I’m a Colts fan, so that was hard for me, but we talked after the Patriots game. He called me, and we’re talking Patriots. One of the reasons I’m friends with John is because I was doing what he told me to do in his books when he was working with Ramsey, and I became debt-free, my wife and I and our kids, and I knew that he had a book coming out. And so I proactively called their team and said, “Hey, we want to do our debt-free stream, but I know that John’s book is coming out on this date. So can we time our debt-free stream where we’re actually talking about John because he was such a good influence, and talk about his book that’s coming out. And you guys can talk about his book coming out, and we’ll just kind of coordinate it that way.” And they were like, “Absolutely.”
So, was I strategic in that? Yeah, sure. Right? Because it’s just another debt-free stream. But instead, they line it up and I’m on the phone for eight minutes with Dave Ramsey, and he’s talking about my book. He’s talking about my platform because I was strategic about trying to help John. And so I think that you should have a genuine interest in the person as a human being. You should be their testimonial. That’s the best thing you could do, is apply your skills to their situation. Another thing is, help them. It’s really interesting, the more famous people I know, and I’ll call them famous at some degree, but they get more free stuff and gifts and help for nothing. It’s like, famous people who go to restaurants usually don’t pay. It’s just weird. And I would say that’s because people want to help them. I think if you could do that in an honest and sincere way …
Everyone that I know that got into the inner circle of those other people are there because they brought a skill. They brought something that added value to them that helped them. So when Mike and I talk, it’s not, “Oh, Mike, it’s just such an honor to talk to you,” though it is. We talk shop. We talk marriage, because I can help him and he can help me. I talked Mike Hyatt into starting a podcast. That turned out well for him. And he’ll tell you that. I introduced him to Stu McLaren, who helped him start a membership site that has made him millions of dollars. And I find joy in those things. So that’s how you, how do you get in with influencers? Serve them. Love them. You should love everybody, you should serve everybody, but don’t forget that they need to be cared for as well. And the other part is, I don’t think you can duplicate it.
And I’ll also say this, Bjork, this is maybe the most important thing: It doesn’t mean that you will be successful. It doesn’t. It does not … Listen, if you stand next to a skunk, yes, you’re gonna stink. But if you stand next to someone that’s got a bunch of money, like the money doesn’t fall into your pocket, right? It’s not … They’re great. They’re great friends. They’ve helped my success, but at the end of the day, it’s up to you and your boss, if you’re self-employed, and that’s you.
Bjork Ostrom: Yup. That’s great. And I think the takeaway for me is that you need to be intentional to give, to serve without any expectation of something in return. And I think if you can do that, not only does it make you feel better … One of the things that I’ve been trying to do is write thank you notes and express gratitude. That’s not ever done with an expectation of something in return, but it also makes me feel better. It feels good. And I think, so often we can approach those relationships thinking, “Ooh, I would really love if I could connect with them, ’cause then maybe they can post about my website or include a link to my blog on their post.”
Andy Traub: And you know what, all those people have done that for me. All those people have posted about my course, posted about my book. That only works to some scale. When I was on Dave Ramsey’s show, which has like, three million listeners, and he’s talked about my book, when he said the title of it several times, yeah I sold a lot of copies. When I was on a blog for Crystal Payne for Money-Saving Mom, when I was on her blog for thirty days straight, she was writing about my book, yeah that sold a lot of copies. She literally paid for a roof on my house. Literally put a roof over my head. I tell Crystal, “You literally put a roof over my head.” She lives in Franklin here. And those big things help, but if you think that Gary V tweeting about something is really going to be the break, it’s just another brick in the wall of you building something. It’s just another brick. And you gotta go back and add some more bricks.
Bjork Ostrom: Yep. Love that. Okay, cool. All right. Appreciate some of those insights, and I think that’s stuff that people can take and apply, and helpful concepts just to understand in general.
One of the things I’d love to do is talk a little bit about, you’ve talked about courses, you’ve talked about your platform a little bit. I’d love to hear you talk a little bit about what your day to day looks like right now. So, I know before we hit record on the podcast, you’re like, “I’m at home, and just so you know, I might have to go check on the kids. I told them not to check in, but they might check in.” So you have a home office. What does a typical day look like for you?
Andy Traub: You know, I have to do things different every day or I go insane. My wife has stopped asking me, “Why are you going somewhere?” She’s like, “Where are you going?” I’m like, “Out.” She’s like, “Okay.” ’Cause she knows I have to get out. I just have to be around people. And I don’t even have to talk to people, I just have to be out of the house sometimes. And so a typical day for me is to look forward and say …
I’m involved in a Mastermind with Dan Miller, I help facilitate that, the 48 Days Mastermind. And so I help facilitate that, I help build my own courses, I have clients that I coach. So if someone’s building a platform to like, “Okay I’m good at something, and I want to figure out how to monetize that and grow it,” then I do group coaching for platform, people who want to grow their platform. So I might have a couple of calls like that. I had a call earlier this morning, it was someone that is publishing a book and just wanted to know how I self-published my book and some unique things I did to add value to readers and get email addresses from Amazon customers, which is always interesting. And so it’s a lot of using Zoom, which is my tool of choice because I do group coaching, I do Masterminds, I do one-on-one coaching, I do webinars, I do podcasting, all using this Zoom tool. And it’s a lot of connecting people through the interwebs, and it’s constantly trying to play with purpose. And so that’s where I … “Okay, here’s this tool …”
And this is very common, and please don’t hear a boast, you asked me what I do all day, so I’m telling you.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah, no, please, yeah.
Andy Traub: So I was on the phone, this is what happened the last two times I’ve contacted Zoom, which is a cool company, it’s got a hundred million dollars in funding from Sequoia or something, one of those fancy companies that gives people lots of money, and they’re growing. The last two times I’ve been on with a Zoom representative, I was asking the questions, and they’re like, “Oh, I don’t know that.” I’m like, “I know, because I know your product better than you do.” And I don’t mean that in like, you suck and I’m great, I just mean that because like, I’m a dork and I get way into these tools because I want to maximize them. And so what I do all day, I just try to figure stuff out and then simplify it for people.
So for Zoom, yeah you could go to their webinar and for one hour figure out how to do one thing. But I sell a Zoom course that teaches you how to do podcasting, coaching, masterminds, and webinars using Zoom and you can watch the entire course in an hour. It’s a bunch of different videos, but the whole thing in one hour. Because one thing Mike Hyatt taught me is there is value in simplicity.
Bjork Ostrom: Right. Like, longer isn’t better.
Andy Traub: The man has sold millions and millions of dollars. I bet he’s sold five to six million dollars of his Best Year Ever course. Bjork, it’s five videos. Dude, it’s … and I’m not talking like an hour long, it’s not like feature films, right? Now, they’re very well-produced. They rent a cool little cottage in Leiper’s Fork over here where all the rich people live and it’s very picturesque and they’ve got cutaways and Mike looks great and you know … but it’s five videos.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. And it’s impactful. Point being not that it’s valuable, but it doesn’t have to be long and lengthy in order to be valuable.
Andy Traub: Absolutely. Right. So one of the things that I’m really focusing on … because I have friends that sell thousand and two thousand dollar courses, and that’s fine, but I’m kind of just honest and say, “I don’t know that I have any one thing that’s worth a thousand dollars and two thousand dollars, or at least that I can convince you is worth that much,” and so I’m really moving towards making smaller, more affordable courses that promise a very specific thing.
So my Master Zoom course is how to run your digital business with one tool. Now, that doesn’t mean it’s going to replace email or Slack or whatever, but if you want to do coaching, if you want to do consulting, if you want to do podcasting, if you want to do webinars, if you want to run a Mastermind, then here’s one tool you can use and for $97, ’cause you know, the internet gods decided everything has to end with a 7, you can learn all that stuff in an hour and then you can also email me anytime and I do a couple of group coaching calls. Like, that’s a very, very specific … Like, I took this thing, it took me an hour, and I had a couple calls with a guy and boom, that’s it. But I’m not gonna like, teach you A to Z like, here’s how to have a digital business and here’s all the nuance of taxes and yadda yadda or Marie Folio B-School or whatever. And I have another course called “Master Evernote,” and Evernote keeps changing, which is good and bad because I have to keep redoing the course, but it’s really just how to use Evernote to help run your business. That’s the other tool I use for the data. So I almost always have Evernote open, I’m taking notes, and Zoom open where I’m interacting with people.
Bjork Ostrom: And for those that aren’t familiar, can you high level explain what Zoom is?
Andy Traub: Yeah, so Zoom is Google Hangouts’, GoToMeeting, GoToWebinar and Skype all get together and have a baby, and the baby’s called Zoom. And so Zoom is the best of all things, but still affordable. And so I once asked them early on, I said, “What’s your pricing structure?” And they said, “Half of GoToMeeting.” Like, that was their thing, we’re always gonna be half of that because they want to be more affordable. It’s a very light program, so the bandwidth is very small. By definition, it’s really a video-conferencing platform, but if anyone that’s ever seen the Brady Bunch, and that reference is sort of getting harder for people to get a concept around, maybe I could find a new one, but if everybody’s seen the start of the Brady Bunch where there’s like nine little squares, that’s Zoom where if you and I were on a call, we’re side by side. If there’s 12 of us, we’ve got three rows of four. If there’s 24 of us, we could have three rows of eight. We’re all able to see each other’s faces using Zoom. That’s sort of the basic foundation of Zoom. But you can also do webinars, you can do Facebook Live through Zoom because you can share your screen. You can share an iDevice screen.
Bjork Ostrom: Can you talk about the Facebook Live thing? That’s really interesting. That’s one of the questions I wanted to ask.
Andy Traub: Yeah, so there are two options. And this is part of like, maybe when I’m a great salesman, and maybe why I’m a horrible salesman, because you don’t need to get Zoom. So I’ll tell you there’s two options for this, and I keep talking ’cause I’m trying to remember the name for the other one, but it’ll jump in later. But there’s another tool you can get- Oh, Wirecast is the other one. It’s like, 500 bucks. So you can either get Wirecast, which allows you to really stream to Facebook Live and you can share your screen and do little tags with your name underneath, whatever they call those things …
Bjork Ostrom: Sure. Like a lower third or …
Andy Traub: Thank you for sounding smart. I’m like, “The thing at the bottom,” and you’re like, “That’s a lower third, dude. Come on.” Indiana. I’m from Indiana. Hoosiers.
Okay, so you can do a lower third ’cause on Wirecast that’s five hundred bucks. But with Zoom, I’m already paying for Zoom Webinar, and what I can essentially do is this: Go to Zoom Webinar, start it and I could have ten people on Zoom Webinar with me and we could all be sharing our screen, everybody looking at mine or you and I could be on it. You could have ten people on there, you could have two people on there, you could have one, and then one of the options is to go live to Facebook using that Zoom Webinar tool.
Bjork Ostrom: Oh, within Zoom, you do it?
Andy Traub: Yup. So there’s two layers of Zoom. There’s Zoom, which is the Brady Bunch thing, and then there’s Zoom Webinar. In order to use Zoom Webinar, you have to have a Zoom account. So let’s just say your Zoom account’s twelve bucks a month. Okay? Zoom Webinar, the basic one’s like $40 a month, and for that, you get a hundred people. So for about fifty-some dollars a month, you can have webinars, you can have unlimited Zoom calls with people, screen sharing up to fifty people a time and they can record and you can take over their screen and you can put people in breakout rooms. Everything you could ever imagine you want to do with video conferencing, right? And then on top of that, you can do the webinars. And when you start a webinar, one of the options is, “Click here to go live on Facebook.” And from there, you could be sharing your screen. Or you and I could be … so you and I, for all intents and purposes, could have done this on Zoom, and we could have been livestreaming on Facebook while we’re recording this.
Bjork Ostrom: Cool. Yeah. We’re doing it on Skype, and before we started, I had microphone trouble and I couldn’t hear you, and I was like, “Oh man, this is just the perfect little plug for starting to use Zoom. It’s Skype.”
Andy Traub: And you know what, listen. If you’re used to Skype, that’s great. My issue with Skype is that for me, it usually takes a long time to load and it really doesn’t differentiate itself from sort of the personal and professional. ’Cause with Zoom, I could say, “Hey I’m at … ” For my weekly platform coaching group, they have the same room they go into, the same URL. And then another group, my Mastermind, we have a different room we go in. So you can have these sort of different IDs, right? There’s different internet rooms you can go visit, addresses to go to. So I’m working towards making affordable course that deliver various specific value. My next course will very likely be …
Okay, you want to self-publish your book or you’re going to traditional publish, how do you get people’s email addresses from Amazon in a non-sleazeball way? How can you add more value to readers to they go, “Oh, no brainer.” I’m reading this book right now called Reach by Andy Molinsky, I’m part of a reading club for my friend Jeff Brown here as a podcast called Read to Lead. I’m a part of that online community. And how great would it be if I could … For every four days, he sends me a summary of a chapter with a little audio commentary like, “Here’s the rest of the story.” I would sign up for that all day long from Andy Molinsky. But he doesn’t give me that option. I just buy his book. So he has no idea who I am, I’m not connected to him ’cause he didn’t add any extra value. Sorry, Andy. But for me, when I wrote my book, I gave people the opportunity to give me their email, and every day for 30 days ’cause I had a 30-day process book, they got every chapter emailed to them along with a link of me reading that day’s chapter in an entertaining and fun way. And so it’s more value.
So that’s probably my next course is gonna be basically how to pull people over into your platform from Amazon in a way that doesn’t feel like, “For this free download …” It’s like, I don’t need another free download, you just want my address. Just tell me you want my address, and it’s not worth a PDF, so give me more. So it’s just making smaller things like that because the other part of it is, I recognize, and I’m not great at building huge things. And if anyone is still listening, thank you, and I’ll say this, because this is big, Dan Miller taught me this: 85% of the job search is about understanding who you are. And it’s not what’s available, it’s who are you? Because if what’s available isn’t going to fit you …
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. Then it doesn’t matter.
Andy Traub: And that’s true for projects, that’s true of all of your work. You’ve made some big risks, you’ve taken some big steps in the last three years with your business. And it’s all the core of who you are. And when it’s not, you’ll either hate it or you’ll fail or whatever, but the point is, I work and I make small things, and I’m really brutally honest, and I’m highly relational, and I get kind of sad when someone buys something from me and I don’t get to meet them versus like, people that just like this and make lots of money and … which is fine, but I’m super relational, I felt like I built a business that’s more relational and I have other friends that are like, “Do I have to talk to people?” I’m like, “No you don’t, actually. You can hide.” So it’s so much about knowing who you are versus I’m gonna do what Amy Porterfield does. Well, don’t. You’re not Amy Porterfield. And when you do, you’re gonna suck at it.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. I think that’s such an important concept to understand, the idea that it’s less about finding somebody that has succeeded and then following their path and more about saying, “Who am I and what’s the bath-” The bath. The bath that I need to take. “Before I walk on a path that is custom for me, what feels the best for me on my journey?” Not “What is the path of somebody else?” And then walk in that.
Andy Traub: Here’s an example of that, and it’s sad. Some people would say live-coaching or webinars are the way to go. What if, and this is not a joke at all, what if you have a speech impediment? What if you really are just not good on camera? Maybe it’s not an actual speech impediment, but maybe you just don’t connect well on camera. Then don’t do video. Just don’t. That’s not a core part of your business.
Bjork Ostrom: And it doesn’t have to happen. Yeah.
Andy Traub: It doesn’t have to be. I have friends that are … I have one friend that’s like, insanely successful, and they try to do video and I’m like, “Hey, just don’t do video. You were doing great before. Don’t do video. It’s not helping you.” And so my encouragement to folks is yes there’s trends, yes there’s tools, and yes, maybe you want to learn Zoom and that’s fine, but understand who you are. And here’s a great piece of encouragement for the seven people who are still listening … that was a joke …
Bjork Ostrom: But maybe true, we don’t know, right?
Andy Traub: Maybe true. And they don’t either. They don’t know if there’s another six. Maybe there’s only one.
For the thousands of people still listening, it’s that if you take a strength finder test … This is what I know, everyone that’s ever taken a strength finder test, it always comes back with something. Always.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. Like, we will always have the top 5 or …
Andy Traub: It never comes back and says, “Oh, I’m sorry, Mr. Ostrom …”
Bjork Ostrom: “You don’t have any strengths.”
Andy Traub: “Unfortunately, you can refund your book because you have no strengths.” And that is because as a Christian, I believe that we are all incarnately, we’re all born with something. And it’s those gifts that we then foster and work and work on, they become strengths, and those are what we run our business with. And my strength is not to be a public speaker like John Acuff, or to be a writer like Jeff Goins, or to be super hyper disciplined like Michael Hyatt. That’s not my jam, but I’m working on my jam and I’m still really, really working on it, like every day.
Bjork Ostrom: One of the things that when we were talking, this was maybe a year or so ago, maybe it was more recent, but that I really thought was cool and introspective that you had said that you are not necessarily a Captain Kirk or a Batman or whatever the role you want to be, you would like Spock or Robin. You aren’t the … you don’t see yourself necessarily as the lead person but the person supporting the lead person.
Andy Traub: Listen, here’s the most common compliment I get. And like, you’ll recognize the hilarity of this compliment. “Andy, I just really love following your stuff because you’re attainable. You’re not like them. They’re like, unattainable. But you, you’re just a guy.” And I’m like, “Thank you?”
Bjork Ostrom: Thanks? Question mark.
Andy Traub: You’re like, “You’re just a guy in marriage counseling with crooked teeth.” I’m like, “Thank you. Thank you very much. I think.”
Bjork Ostrom: That feels so good, yeah.
Andy Traub: I know. They don’t say that. But I know what they mean, and that is that one of the problems of having superheroes is like, what if you weren’t born on that planet? And you weren’t given that? So you have to have the right kind of heroes, and for me, and maybe it’s self-limiting belief, but I’m really good at helping other people succeed. And so only the devil would tell me that’s not a gift. This weekend, one of my best friends in the world Jeff Goins, massive platform, thousands upon thousands of people have bought his Tribewriters course. And he had a Tribewriters Live event. And I came and I just helped. I don’t need you to pay me, I just … I got a Moleskine notebook, which are, that’s like 25 bucks, and I got a free book. I don’t know if I supposed to take them, but I did.
Bjork Ostrom: You deserved it.
Andy Traub: I did. A little bit of an iron-ness.
So I’m at the event for two days, and I’m helping people with their platform and such, and several people said to me, including Jeff, “Man, thank you, you’re really good at just being here to fill the gaps, encourage, and help out.” I don’t think I’m probably gonna ever get anyone to get on a plane and come see me. And you know what? That’s okay. I’m not a piece of crap because I don’t have this massive platform and I have this dynamic personality that da-da-da-da. I’m okay, I will be able to pay my mortgage this month and I think next month because I’m doing things in my own giftedness.
And you’re just way too much, “I want to be the star.” It’s like, what if you aren’t built to be the star? Maybe you’re supposed to be a great Spock. Because let me say this, Bjork: Spock was awesome. He was no pushover. You knew when they landed on the planet. Spock wasn’t gonna get killed like the nameless guy that landed on the planet. Spock was awesome. Robin had his role. I don’t like the Robin role as much, but Spock had his own giftedness, and I think it’s okay to say what I do is I help other people do this. Like, Food Blogger Pro. My understanding is it’s not supposed to be this amazing thing, it’s to equip other people to do amazing things. That’s your superpower. So there’s power in helping other people succeed.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. I was thinking about this just earlier today. I’m going through a free course, and it’s put on by Y Combinator people and I think you can get to it by going to startup.co. And in the first lesson, the guy that started a sauna who used to be at Facebook talks about the difference between founding a company and being like, an early employee at a company, and talks about the massive impact that so many early employees had that you never would have heard of. It’s not Mark Zuckerberg, but it’s the guy that developed the Like button and integrated that into Facebook. And the massive impact that they have, and I think that’s something that for whatever reason, because of culture or because of story and liking a story that’s more intriguing, we don’t talk about those people as much and I think it’s so important to point that out.
And one of the reasons why I was so excited to have you on the podcast, because I know that’s part of your story and you’re willing to talk about that, and so many people need to hear that because if everybody feels like they need to be the star of XYZ …
Andy Traub: Then there’s a lot of failure.
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. And it may not be the best fit for them.
Andy Traub: It’s probably not. Just look at the numbers. There’s a reason that there’s only so many movie stars. Because they can’t all be movie stars. What your parents told you about you is true, that you are unique. You are a special snowflake. Whoever you are, wherever you are, you are completely unique. And I think that’s true on every level. You have unique gifts. What’s not true, if they told you, is that you are destined for greatness in the world’s eyes. But I think, and this is just as a core of being a believer, you are already made great, we are already made great, we’re supposed to live in that greatness. So our greatness is already built into us, we spend the rest of our life trying to grow into that greatness. But if we’re trying to change the world’s greatness, if I’m trying to sell as many books or be as funny as John Acuff, I will wake up every day and feel like a failure.
And Bjork, that’s one of the hardest parts of living here is I live amongst the .01%. I mean, Williamson County, which is a quarter mile from here, is the seventh wealthiest county in America. So I can leave my beautiful house and go, “Oh my gosh, look at those houses.” And that’s stupid. That’s stupid. And we do that online all day long. It’s called Instagram. So part of it is just having a reality check that you are enough, the world needs your art, the world needs your contribution, and you don’t have to be the superstar. You can be Batman, Robin, you can be second or third or fourth down the line and do just fine.
Bjork Ostrom: And I think the important thing with that, just real quick, is that doesn’t mean settling. I think it means readjusting your expectations to find something that is a better fit and feels better and you’re more successful in that. It doesn’t mean like, and then that’s not as good of an option, but it’s what was cut out …
Andy Traub: Yeah, let’s stick with the analogy and say … would anyone say that Leonard Nimoy was a laughingstock because he was Spock? No, they developed his character, he had his own unique gifts and talents and when Captain Kirk left the bridge, what did he say? “Spock, you’re in charge. The bridge is yours.” And so that happens sometimes. My friends, when I host things for Jeff, when I hosted his podcast, when I help John with things, when I help Hy with things, I’ll sit across from them and say, “You should do this.” And they don’t go, “Well dude, my email list is 400 times bigger than yours. Who are you to say that to me?” Because it’s not about the size of your email list. You can have good ideas without a big email list, right? And so it’s about what is your unique contribution? And so we have to know who we are and go live in that. Because if you spend most of your life going, “I’m not them,” then you’re right, but you’re also going to be miserable.
And I don’t say these things because I figured them out before I felt them. I say these things because I’m like, “Why am I miserable?” And I’m like, “Oh, that’s right, because I’m trying to be all my friends who are all technically quote-unquote ‘more successful’ than me,” but on what measure? And so I don’t learn these things before, I learn them afterwards. And I’m like, “Why am I so miserable?” And my wife’s like, “Because you’re not those people,” and I’m like, “Oh thank you.” Thanks for the reminder, you know?
Bjork Ostrom: I feel like that’s a good note to end on.
Andy Traub: I feel like that was kind of a downer though. Like if I could do a quick recap, I feel like I was like, “Reality check,” but I hope it was an encouragement.
Bjork Ostrom: It is. I think if you could rewind thirty seconds what it is, I think in recap, what I heard you saying is it’s not trying to be somebody else, it’s finding your unique abilities and gifts and leaning into those and not trying to have those unique abilities and gifts be what somebody else’s unique abilities and gifts are, and to fully embrace what it is that you have, and to move into that whether that means being the focus of attention and kind of celebrity-ness or maybe it doesn’t mean that, but it does mean that you find something that’s a really good fit that you’re excited to do every day that is fully realizing the gifts that you have and the potential that you have. And I think when people find that, they’ll feel that and they’ll feel better because of it. So that would be my recap of what you said.
Andy Traub: Yeah. So if people could just fast-forward to this part, but it’s too late ’cause they already listened to the other part, but that was a really good summary. So if you just jumped in … How about this? If someone just walked in the room and said, “What are you listening to?” You can say like, “Well, just listen, they just summarized the whole episode in twenty seconds.” So that was great.
Bjork Ostrom: Right, that was it.
Andy Traub: So if you share, if you’ve got one of those cool apps, like you’re gonna say, “Listen to this part. Bjork just saved you a bunch of time.”
Bjork Ostrom: Okay, good. Hey Andy, thanks so much for coming on. Before we wrap up, where can people follow along with you online and stay in touch?
Andy Traub: Sure. Well, my website is TakePermission.com. My email is [email protected] ’cause I’m not bus or important enough to have other people reading my email yet. Someday maybe. So if you email me, I will read it, and I will respond.
Bjork Ostrom: Awesome.
Andy Traub: Unless you send me something mean, and then I probably- Well, I probably will send you a picture of my family and be like, “You made my children cry.”
Bjork Ostrom: Yeah. “I read this to them, and they cried.”
Andy Traub: That’s right. “I read it and they were like, ‘Daddy! I love you!’” So yeah, TakePermission.com, [email protected] and I’m on all the socials and yeah. Buy my stuff, help feed my kids. Go team.
Bjork Ostrom: All right. Thanks Andy, really appreciate you coming on today.
Andy Traub: Appreciate you, brother. God bless you, man.
Bjork Ostrom: You too.
Hey, that’s a wrap for episode number 87. If you want to check out any of the resources that Andy mentioned in this podcast, you can go to FoodBloggerPro.com/87 and that will redirect you to the show notes for this podcast. And if you have not yet subscribed to this podcast, I’d really encourage you to do that. The best way to do that is to go to FoodBloggerPro.com/itunes. We’ve had a really fun uptick in downloads lately and it’s been fun to watch more and more people come along and listen to this podcast, and I think it’s in the thousands that at that one point, Andy mentioned maybe there’s six people, maybe there’s seven people. Judging by the statistics, we can’t say how long people watch, but we can see how many people download and it’s definitely in the thousands, which is so fun to see and we’re so thankful that you are following along with this. We really appreciate it. That’s a wrap for this week, and we will be back here same time, same place. Until then, make it a great week. Thanks, guys.