Photo Left: Stefan Aarnio and Ryan Malfara
This year I am investing more than ever in myself and my education and I am travelling all over North America to meet with some of the leading coaches in Real Estate, Business, Marketing, Branding and Internet Marketing to take myself to the next level. One of my favourite things about flying to Las Vegas, Palm Springs, LA, New York, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Abbotsford, Kelowna, Chicago, and Toronto (mostly travelled this year with a few cities in January 2013) Is that I get to meet winners from all over North America and people who have done amazing things all over the world.
The people who travel to better themselves through self education are of two kinds: 90% are tourist seminar junkies who blow insane wads of cash to have fantasy vacations with real estate and business gurus. It's glorified, inflated, fantasy tourism, and then there is the slim 10% of attendees who are successful businesses people who are some of the toughest and smartest people in the world. These people are on a journey to bring their game to the next level.
I met a man by the name of Ryan Malfara in Winnipeg earlier this year at a branding event and again today in Chicago. Ryan was the MC for the event in Chicago today and is an inspiration to myself for 1) Being incredibly mentally and physically tough 2) Being a great marketer and brander of himself.
Ryan's claim to fame is his story. In April, 2011, Ryan told himself that he was going to take a "challenge" and prove to himself that he could do anything he set his mind to. So he decided to spend $50,000 and enter the world's toughest race. This race is called "The Arctic Race" which is a 450 mile race on foot, through the arctic to the north pole. The race is done in teams of 3 and each racer has a 150 pound sled on his or her back while they race through temperatures ranging from -20 degrees Celsius to -100 degrees Celsius. Did I mention it takes 26 days to finish and you do 14-16 hours of racing with less than 5 hours of sleep. Racers have a risk of dying from the bitter cold or polar bears and Ryan almost had to get his foot amputated part way through the race due to chronically infected blisters that plagued his feet. IT'S INSANE - and he chose it.
Ryan can tell the story better than I can so you can read about it at ryansrace.com (which is down at the time of writing) but there are two lessons to be learned from a guy like Ryan.
1) There are NO EXCUSES for not being successful. When you start looking at the insane stats and odds of completing an amazing task like "The Arctic Race", you realize that anyone (who is truly committed) can accomplish ANYTHING that he or she desires. There are a million times when you FEEL like quitting but you are just giving into excuses. Success is a choice, we choose every day. There are NO EXCUSES.
2) Ryan has created a great brand for himself. I have absolutely no idea about how Ryan earns his money or in what magnitude. He controls his image, dresses well, speaks well, is physically fit, has a good diet, tells a good story, has accomplished an amazing race, and has proper websites and branding to enforce his credibility. He says he has a business that has increased ten fold since he ran the race. I have no idea what his business is, but he communicates success through his mannerisms and just from the details he is a person that you WANT to know. He has created a great, controlled image and a brand for himself. The best part is, I have NO IDEA WHO RYAN REALLY IS or what his business does. In the end, I don't care. Successful people just want to be around successful people and Ryan has made himself a magnet.
Ryan believes what I believe, we're in the same room with the same people, this creates trust and transactions happen.
Learn from ryan, I took notes ;)