Christopher : My name is Christopher Duncan, your host. I interview top experts and guests who have achieved total freedom and share with you the strategies that I have used to not just create one, but help over 200 people start a six figure freedom business where they can travel, enjoy their life, and make the money they truly deserve. Enjoy the show.
Welcome Freedom Fast Trackers for another episode today. I’m back with an old friend, somebody that we connected a few years ago, Melissa Krivachek. She’s done so many things. She’s a secret weapon for entrepreneurs and executives that use to achieve more every day. Seven books, she’s released, two or four now are international bestsellers. You know, you deserve so much. Since we first talked, you just don’t stop. You’re like this powerhouse that just doesn’t stop. YOu’ve had a massive transformation. Welcome to the show.
Melissa: Thank you for having me.
Christopher : It’s gonna be a lot of fun. Let’s start … For right now, I want you to really dial in, if you’re looking to just take your life and switch your business to the next level. We were talking about fear a little bit, and I think today we’re gonna talk about really taking that business that’s already started and growing and things.
Just a favor, let’s start off with your story, and where you started and what you’re up to now, that’d be perfect.
Melissa: Yeah. Back in 2004 I started with Walmart, then I grew the ranks, and then in 2008, I became a store manager. Then I got fired, and in 2008, obviously, the world was collapsing, or at least the Unites States was, so I ended up homeless for 36 days. My car got repossessed, I was $50,000 in debt, and then on top of that, I went to jail for six days.
Looking in the mirror, I realized, you’ve gotta choose a different life. You can’t keep doing the same thing and extracting a different result. I think that’s something we always look at when we frame successful people. As I looked at myself in the mirror, I was crying because the life was literally sucked out of me, Chris. I remember being pale white and completely drained. I was at my heaviest weight ever. I had lived the sort of lifestyle of just driving around, not paying any bills, in and out of college. I didn’t care about authority. Nothing mattered to me.
What I did was, I literally said to myself, enough is enough, and I went to YouTube, and I found a bunch of videos. Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, you know, all the greats. I absorbed that.
Then I started reading books. I read thousands of books.
Seven years later, I’m on my second company, my seventh book, and I’ve built multimillion dollar companies in nine different countries.
It’s been an amazing journey and I love what I do. I’m obsessed with sales and personal development and transformation and just being the person behind other people’s success.
Christopher : And I love that about you. I would love you to talk about that huge transformation. I mean, the picture is amazing, but you mentioned off-hand, you were at your heaviest weight ever, now you’re not. Tell us a little bit about that, because it’s just [inaudible 00:03:52], really.
Melissa: Yeah. I used to have these super limited beliefs around weight. That’s specifically what you’re referring to. Like, stupid beliefs. I couldn’t get married until I was 170 pounds, I couldn’t date, I couldn’t be successful, or couldn’t run a business, all kinds of shit. Honestly, it was stupid. But looking back, that’s the mindset I was in. I think as entrepreneurs, we have to focus on our mindset. So over the last 11 months, I’ve lost 136 pounds.
Christopher : Wow.
Melissa: It has nothing to do with going to the gym or eating healthy, which, both are important … Drinking water, getting sleep, those are also important. It actually has to do with your frame of mind. You could know to do something and not do it. Whether it’s our relationships, our business, or our health. We know year in and year out, okay, eat healthy, drink water, work out, how simple is that, right? Hard! It’s hard because nobody wants to wake up and go to the gym, nobody wants to wake up and sacrifice holiday parties and birthday gatherings and all kinds of stuff knowing that they’re not going to engage in eating the food the same way they would if they didn’t care about their health.
Christopher : Wow. You created that in 11 months, did you say?
Melissa: Yup. 11 months, 136 pounds. Yup.
Christopher : You are such a badass. That is so … Good for you. The other thing that you mentioned in your story, and that’s just incredible, because I know what it takes to turn around a frame of mind. I’m gonna dig into that a bit more, but I’d love to understand both your companies. You said you’ve got two companies, nine different countries. Would you share a little bit about what your companies do?
Melissa: Yep. Our main focus is sales consulting and we focus on deep transformation work. Sales is like, you’re overcoming objections, negotiations, all of that kind of stuff. That’s basic sales. I don’t teach basic sales. We work together, you should know something about sales.
I literally dig into your business, tear it apart, figure out were the leaking holes are, and figure out how do we make your family better, your experiences better, your business better, your lifestyle better. How do you have more freedom, more productivity? How do you have less stress and make more? That’s what everybody wants to do and yet all of us in some way or another are struggling because of the story we’ve told ourselves. What’s amazing is that an excuse is just a well plan to lie, and we all have them.
Christopher : That’s interesting. So you’re doing sales consulting, but you’re looking at it from a completely holistic point of view.
Melissa: 100%. What I have learned in building companies and growing to the level of success that I have grown and just helping different businesses, is that it’s all about the story that someone tells themselves and where they’re at.
Let me give you a couple examples. I have a client in Canada, and when she came to me, she said, “I have two companies, one of them is marketing and one is work development. I need to increase my revenue and I need to learn to sell more.” I said, “Okay, well what’s the real problem?”
We dug into her family life a little bit, and what we found out is, she initiated a divorce with her husband because he didn’t want kids and she did and they made this agreement before they got married. When she initiated the divorce, he ended up committing suicide. Every decision she would make around sales was based on his approval of her actions, except that that was really irrelevant since he was dead, right?
Let me give you another example. This happens all the time in businesses: the owner’s mind is somewhere else trying to solve some major problem or crisis in their life, like not having that deep relationship, or not being able to focus on the things they really want to focus on, or not having the time they really want to have.
Another example is, we have a lady in the United States here, and for her, her boyfriend passed away, and then she took her boyfriend’s son, and that was like her son, right? He ended up committing suicide because of his father’s death. She not only lost her boyfriend, but she lost her boyfriend’s son as well. She was completely devastated, ends up selling her company for a couple hundred million dollars, and says, “I just want a fresh start. I just want a clean slate. I’m gonna do something completely different.” I said, “Whoa, whoa, whoa. You can’t start completely over without recognizing the emotional attachments that you had to the people and to the results that you just produced.”
I find this a lot with executives. I just had an executive go to India and he has a family crisis. He wants to start his fifth business. I told him straight up, “Don’t start your fifth business without fixing the family problem because you cannot have the family dynamic be a mess and you’re trying to have a successful business, or you can’t have a successful family and your business is falling apart. They are completely intertwined.”
Christopher : It’s amazing to hear you say that, because I wasn’t expecting this to be the topic of what we talked about, but I think you’re so right. It’s just such a big part of being in business, saving my relationship with Harriet, and everything else, so while I know that I’m in mess, everything else is working as well. If you were to talk to that person right now, his ears are pricked up, they’re listening to this episode, they’re going, “You know what? She’s right, but …” I can hear them right now, “She’s right, but I just want to keep her out of my company.” If you were to speak directly to them, how important is it for them to get their family and their health and other things in their life, how much should it increase your business to get … Do you have a story around it? Like sorting all of the …
Christopher : Yeah, okay, go.
Melissa: Yeah. The first thing I always tell people is, “Go declutter your home.” You want to start with your emails and your closet. These two things are completely different, right? People have their emails on overdrive. They have coupons coming in, they have sales, they have all kinds of crazy shit coming to their emails. Then in their closet they don’t even care about their wardrobe. They’re literally just throwing stuff in their closet and maybe it’s there five years later, like, “Oh, I didn’t fit into that.” It’s like this chaos is running through their mind, from the very beginning of the day when they choose to make a decision about what they’re gonna wear.
If our closet is organized, we literally make less decisions, and less decisions increases our productivity, it helps provide clarity, and it gets rid of all the massive noise that’s happening. We have enough noise that we don’t need to create in our homes and our businesses.
You want to be focused on cupboards, your car, your closets, your inbox, your outbox, your mailbox, literally anything that needs to be cleaned, always clean it, because it’s going to help your mind to stay in a calm state. When you’re in that calm state, that relaxation mode, you can literally focus and become that much more productive. Instead of working 14 hours, you can work 4 hours and get the same amount done.
Christopher : [inaudible 00:11:42], this is huge for me. I spend so long working, it’s 18 hours, unless, and I see at the moment this word hustle. When I started business, getting hustled was about the same meaning that it is now …
Melissa: Oh god.
Christopher : What’s your take on this unproductive hustle vibe that’s getting thrown out in the air? It sounds like you have an interesting perspective on it.
Melissa: I guess that would be the perfect one to ask. Since I went to a wedding over the summer, and the bride wrote ‘hustler’ on my name card. I took a pen out of my purse and crossed it out and wrote, ‘hustler in recovery.’
Christopher : That sucks.
Melissa: I don’t deal with hustlers, because I think that what happens is that they want to constantly get a result, right? And let me just say, I hustled off six million dollars in business, and then I literally went to a burnout stage. I called one of my coaches and was like, “Listen, I literally cannot take my business anymore. I’m gonna drive it into the ground, I give up. I don’t want to work with these people. I literally have no desire to wake up tomorrow and do it again. I’m just not gonna do it.” He was like, “Dude, what are you talking about? You can’t just do that one day.” I said, “Watch. Seriously, I don’t have time for this.”
I had to stop and reflect, like, what am I doing? The reality of the situation was I was literally driving myself into the ground because I’m constantly working.
One of the things that we do as a couple is, we love to have fun, but here’s the thing, combined we have seven businesses. He has five and I have two. There’s also two kids, they’re four and ten. When I came into the relationship, I came in like, let’s do a lot of fun stuff, and he’s being super, super, super serious. Like, ridiculously serious, right?
I realized we don’t have to work as hard, we just need to have a little bit more fun. Eventually what we did was trampoline parks, snowball fights, ice skating, I mean, crazy stuff, jumping out of helicopters, all of this actually tripled my revenue. I was like, why wasn’t I doing this stuff before? Oh right, I was too busy hustling.
Christopher : I see it more than most people imagine, is that when that entrepreneur just lets go and stops trying to control and enforce it, they experience such a liberal growth that it’s unbelievable to me that the hustle word is still out there. However, there is the other side to it. And it’s funny that two recovering hustlers are here talking about the fact that husting’s not the right thing to do … I look back on it, right, I look back on the four hours sleep, and I’m like, you know what, I’m proud of that guys. It got me here.
Do you think that at the start of their business, do you think they still need that hustle to help get stuff off the ground?
Melissa: There’s way, way, way more effective ways to do stuff, and getting four hours of sleep is not productive, unless that’s all you need. There’s four different types of sleep patterns, so maybe you’re a person that really, truly only does need four hours of sleep, and that’s fine if that’s you, but that’s definitely not me. I can’t survive without nine hours of sleep. The other thing that people forget that … You should take a nap. Just check out during the day, take a nap, and come back. You don’t need to push yourself from meeting to meeting, you don’t need to fill your calendar with senseless stuff. What you need to do is focus all of your attention on where are you spending your time.
One of the exercises that I always have people do, and you can actually find this on my website, is I have them do a time study. Once a quarter, which is four times a year, I have my executives and entrepreneurs do this. They hate me for this, but they print out a piece of paper, and the time is broken in fifteen minute segments. You literally have to write down every fifteen minutes what you’re doing. Are you reading a newspaper, going to the bathroom, commuting, are you talking on the phone, are you browsing the internet, are you wasting time on Facebook? I want to know literally every thing you’re doing every fifteen minutes 24 hours a day for three to seven days. That’s going to tell me exactly what to cut out, who we need to get to delegate stuff to, what we can automate, and how we can cut things out of your schedule that just don’t make sense.
Christopher : It’s huge. Doing a time study is huge. For me it was so long before I actually did it, and when I did it, everything changed. Literally. I’m writing down what I did in the past fifteen minutes and in that moment of writing it down, I couldn’t do that thing that was unproductive the next fifteen minutes. There’s not a statement that you could’ve said more that I would agree that every person out there should do a time study at least once a quarter.
Melissa: Yeah, and you know what, you’re gonna hate it too. I’m gonna warn you, you’re gonna hate it.
Christopher : You said to download something off your website around there?
Melissa: Yeah, if you go to the online coaching tab on my website, there’s literally seven videos, and under several of the videos, there are working PDFs. That is literally everything I teach my clients to do, and it’s free and available to anybody, because I believe that over the course of creating a successful business, there are only seven things that each of us need to focus on to maximize the results that we get. The problem is that when you’re a start-up, you don’t know what those things are, so you just start throwing darts all over the place, hoping something is gonna stick to the dartboard, but that’s just not how it works.
Christopher : I would love to know these seven things. I’m taking notes.
Christopher : What are these seven things that they all need to focus on? Is one time?
Melissa: One is definitely time. If you don’t focus on time, then you’re probably focused on the wrong them. The first and most important thing, though, is trimming the excess, and I talked about this a little bit in the beginning. You want to just trim all of the excess out of your life, declutter your space. Check your environment, check your emotions, they’re very closely linked. For example, if you’re spending any time at a coffee shop, where people are chattering about others or there’s negative energy, negative vibes, negative talk, you probably want to remove yourself and find a different coffee shop.
Literally, your environments are connected to your emotions, and your emotions are driving your results, and your results, well, they speak for themselves because the numbers don’t lie.
At the end of that, I talk about four different tools that you can use to stress less, and that’s automation, delegation, deletion, and donation. So donate all the stuff you don’t need, delegate all the things that you don’t need to be doing because they’re out of your zone of genius, automate the things you can automate …
Melissa: Yeah, and then automate everything else. Then you just want to focus on the five vital functions that make your life successful and that’s your health, your finances, your relationships, your confidence, and sales. That’s all you need to focus on.
If you … I’ve got this exercise on the website, actually. I tell people, grab a full-length mirror and stand in front of it naked with a marker in your hand, and see if you can cover the mirror in compliments. Most people can’t. They literally stand there, like, “I have nothing to compliment myself about.” Even the most beautiful, drop-dead gorgeous 10s will freeze up, because that’s how much we lack in levels of confidence. My question always comes up, “How are you going to walk into a board room and ask for a million dollar check when you can’t even look yourself in the mirror?”
Christopher : Wow.
Melissa: Then you want to structure your day. What often happens is the most successful people have very strict routines. I’ve got an executive, and upon waking up, he prays for 30 minutes. After prayer … And by the way, he prays with his wife, so they don’t leave the house together without prayer … And then they have their morning supplement, they go to the gym, they hit the office. The first three hours of the day are totally dedicated to them together working. They have kids as well. For those people that think this doesn’t work with kids, it does work with kids.
You go to the office, you work for five, six hours at a time, the rest of the time is family time, dance time, or football time, or whatever kind of activities you want to do as a family.
You just gotta keep that momentum going. The thing that most successful companies do, in fact, every successful company, from Apple to, you know, anybody, is innovate. Look at all the things in your business and find out what it is you can innovate. Finally, look at your social circle, your activities that you do, and the places that you spend your time, and you’re going to figure out that your net worth is comparable to the places you spend your time, the people that you hang out with, and the energy that you put around yourself.
Christopher : This is so much you just dropped in. My pen has been scribbling like crazy.
Melissa: The good news is, Chris, that you can just go to the online coaching tab and it’s all there for you, so you don’t actually have to take notes for right now. You can print out the worksheets and just do it all, or whenever you want to, I guess.
Christopher : So I suggest that everyone gets it. Hey, I’ve got two questions I love to ask everyone on this, and with every time, we just get something absolutely unique come out of it. So here’s the two questions. The first one goes like this, if you were today to start from scratch, you have no money, no relationships, nothing, you’re back in that place starting from scratch, how do you start your business? What business do you focus on? How do you make that happen?
Melissa: Okay. Well, the first thing I would do is walk out into the streets and find something to sell and sell it. Since I have sales skills, and honestly I think all of us have conversational skills, that’s probably gonna be the easiest, because you’re gonna find people outside. You just walk outside, find something to sell, and sell it. Or return pop cans. Do really anything that’s gonna be productive to making money. Then take what little money you have and start investing in yourself and spending more time on yourself. This is where most people fail, is that they will spend all the time working in and on their business, but they will never spend the time to work in and on themselves.
Christopher : Great advice. The second part of the question is this: If you were to go back to the beginning, and you were able to spend two minutes looking yourself in the eye, and give yourself some advice or a pep talk, what would you say?
Melissa: Don’t tell your dad to fuck off. That’s what I would say, because I regret the moment that I told him that, but at the end of the day, he was a failed entrepreneur, so I said that out of, like, “Don’t tell me what to do.” And yet, I lived under my parents’ house for three years trying to figure out what I was trying to do. They watched me and like, “Why are you sitting for hours behind the computer? You don’t sleep at night and you’re talking to strangers on the phone. Why are you connecting with these people?”
Is it good to alter close relationships? No, it’s not, but sometimes it needs to be done. I would just go back and say … It’s not something I would repeat again.
Christopher : That’s so funny. You’ve just got so much knowledge here, and you’ve written all these books and there’s so much that you can give. How would you like to end the show? What would be some advice or piece of wisdom would you like to give to all the entrepreneurs that have been listening and attentively writing this down?
Melissa: Am I allowed to swear?
Christopher : I think it’s too late for that.
Melissa: Okay. My mantra for the entire year is just, “Fuck average, live fearless.” Don’t go out every day and have fear in your body, because if you do that, no matter what mode you’re in, if you’re in scarcity mode or a mode where you don’t know what’s gonna happen tomorrow, just live fearless. Because at the end of the day, you can’t worry about tomorrow, you can’t be thinking about what happened yesterday, just live today, and give it everything you have.
Christopher : That’s a great way to end. Thank you for your time. I would love to get you back on and talk even deeper on some of these topics, because I feel like I’ve been surfacing on how deep you and I could really go on these, but I think that you gave your listing a really good kick in the neck, so I know exactly what it is that I need to do and nothing else. I mean, here you are, running two companies, and you’re only eight years ago being in such a down and out place. Thank you for sharing all those stories and everything on here, and I really, really have appreciated you being on.
Melissa: Yeah, of course. So you’re gonna connect them to my website, correct? Because I didn’t spell that out. I say, “Go get the videos,” but I didn’t give them a URL.
Christopher : Well, let’s give them that URL. What is the exact URL?
Melissa: It’s melissakrivachek.com. M-E-L-I-S-S-A-K-R-I-V-A-C-H-E-K.com
Christopher : We will definitely have that in the show notes, if you’re like me and definitely couldn’t take all that down. It’s all in the show notes, along with all of her social media. Go and stalk her, she’s very active on Facebook and on the other platforms as all. So get there and up your environment. I think that’s the biggest thing. Be bold, be fearless, and just go for it.
Melissa, I kinda knew this conversation would be like this, I know there’s a lot of information, but just do that, because I know that about you and it’s definitely there. Again, thanks for being on here, it’s absolutely awesome.
Melissa: Yeah, you got it, of course. Thanks, Chris, for having me.
Christopher : Yeah, I love it. Listeners, be sure you subscribe, like, and share this. Go connect with Melissa, go and get the show notes, go and go onto her amazing … it sounds like such an amazing time study, so go on there and do that, and live a total free, free your mind, free your time, free your life, do what matters most. Snatch it. I’ll see you on the next episode.