In this Monday’s with Michael interview, I talk about how I overcame depression as an entrepreneur and give you seven actionable mental health tips to keep your well being in balance.
Developing a positive mindset as an entrepreneur is one of the most important things you can do for yourself and your business. I recently wrote about this on Medium and how mental health is more than money.
It can be challenging to get into that mindset though, if you don’t first face the person you’ve been running from – and by that person I mean yourself. Use these tips to do the work and learn who you are, what you want and why you are the way you are – challenge your old belief system and walk away with a renewed sense of purpose.
1. Hire a Transformational Coach
I joined Jim Fortin’s Transformational Life Coaching and began to change my life from the inside out.
2. Do Hypnotherapy
Reprogram your subconscious by investing in hypnotherapy. Find a certified professional in your area.
3. Become a Student of the Mind
Anxiety and depression start with your thinking! If you can learn to change your thoughts, you can change your life.
4. Quit Hustling
Hustling can lead quickly to burn out. I follow the advice of James Wedmore “The less I do, the more I make”.
5. Quit Comparing Yourself to Others
Compare yourself to the previous version of yourself and not to someone else!
6. Begin Self – Care Rituals
Invest in anything that makes you feel better mentally. This helps you show up better in the world!
7. Learn to Love Yourself
Your business and results are a direct reflection of how well you treat yourself. The more you grow, the more your business will as well.
Are You Ready to Start Your Freelance Writing Career?
If you are ready to take the next step and launch your freelance writing career, I would love to help you build momentum!
I still have a few spots left in my coaching program, fill out an application to learn more 1/1 coaching.
Speaker 1 (00:01):
You are listening to episode number 73 of inspire your success podcast. On today’s episode I’m going to talk about how I was able to overcome entrepreneur depression and give you seven actionable tips to take care of your mental health as an entrepreneur coming up.
Speaker 1 (00:20):
All right, welcome back. If you’re listening here on Monday, again, thank you for being here. This is your host, Michael Leonard and uh, yeah, just hope you’re having a great March. Uh, we’re kind of coming up to the end of it here. It feels, uh, it feels hard to believe Q1 is pretty much done and uh, yeah, just seeing a lot of growth on my side of the things and hopefully you guys are as well. So if y’all ever have any wins and you just want to share them with me for your writing career or some of the things you’ve got from the podcast, please let me know. I absolutely love celebrating with you. I’ve had a lot of people doing that on medium lately. So if you have anything, feel free to shoot me an email over at support, at inspire your success.com. Love to hear from you.
Speaker 1 (01:01):
So keeping with the a daily, a new fact about me and again, if you’re new to this show, thank you for being here. I’ve been, uh, on a recent, uh, piece of advice from Pat Flynn to share a little bit more about myself. And, uh, one thing I wanted to share for today’s episode was, uh, that I actually was someone that was considered I guess a fire Walker. And in March of 2017, uh, right before I quit my job, I walked on fire at a Tony Robbins event. So, uh, it was a pretty crazy experience. I went out there, um, I really was just understanding what like personal development was. I didn’t really know anything about it. I was just trying to figure out how to, you know, live a better life, how to make more money, how to find more fulfillment. That was really the thing for me is like, I just wanted fulfillment.
Speaker 1 (01:53):
I had money. I was making 120 K at my old job, but I was miserable. And so I was looking for more, I was looking for a fulfillment. I had went to a a half day event at Tony Robbins the year before and I’d never seen a human being with that much energy and passion and drive. So I ended up going out to LA by myself for four days and, uh, went to unleash the power within and a man, I was the quiet and experience. If you’ve, if you’ve ever been, you know what it’s like. Tony brings the heat literally and uh, it’s, it’s quite an experience. I mean, the first day was like 12 hours and then it culminated with, uh, at midnight walking, walking on fire with about, I don’t know, five to 8,000 other people I think ended up doing it. There was like 10,000 people at the event.
Speaker 1 (02:41):
So crazy thing. Um, the whole thing, if you don’t know that, he really does that to shatter your belief system because you know, you have beliefs that, Hey, if I walk on fire, I’m gonna get burned and, uh, wait a second. If that’s not true, what else is not true in my life? And so we, you know, did all the safety precautions, all that stuff. But yeah, you walk over hot burning coals for about 20 feet and a made it the other end. So that’s kinda my random fact. Uh, if you’ve been to Tony Robbins or he’s impacted your life, uh, always let me know. I’m a big fan of Tony. Uh, he really got me into entrepreneurship, personal development and uh, yeah, I think it’s just really inspiring. Whenever you meet someone or see someone that is really living their karma, their Dharma and just giving back to the world like he does, it’s a very, very inspiring.
Speaker 1 (03:25):
So the reason I wanted to share that fact is because this episode is all about how I really went through a very, very dark time in entrepreneurship. A couple of them. And uh, again, full transparency with this podcast is that I want to share everything with you. Like, you know, a lot of people just see what it’s like to be an entrepreneur or what they think it’s like to be, and it’s just this magical life of freedom and jets and money and all this stuff. But you know, a lot of, a lot of times that this is not the case. So don’t believe everything you see on Instagram. Uh, you know, if everyone was happy, they had money, they and billionaires wouldn’t be killing themselves still. So I say that not lightly because you know, it’s, it’s a very big, very big thing. Mental health is something you need to really pay attention to.
Speaker 1 (04:10):
We don’t learn any of this stuff in school, which sucks. Uh, and it’s, it’s very tough a lot of times for guys to, to really open up about this stuff. So, you know, I was at an event in San Diego a few weeks ago and I openly shared, uh, the, exactly this. And so I really got a positive response. I shared, um, you know, my own journey and people really resonated and appreciated the vulnerability. So I want to talk about this because again, if you’re going through some tough times in your life, if you’re depressed, if you’re anxious, if you’re, you know, whatever the feelings are, just know that you’re not alone. Um, you know, this, this all will tie into entrepreneurship, but I really just want to IM want to put this out there because it’s important. Uh, you’re not alone. There’s people that can help. And that’s one of the things I did.
Speaker 1 (04:56):
So when I was really like going into it, just to give you a little bit of a backstory, I was very unfulfilled in my nine to five. I was, I mean, I hated it. I was just doing it for a paycheck. Um, but I was able to kinda like drown out my negative feelings literally with alcohol. Uh, I, you know, I drank a lot and, uh, it was, you know, it was just one of those things. I was like, Hey, I’m making money. What else do I need right now? Oh, I feel this, eh, we’ll just get drunk. We’ll just kind of drown it out. And that really, uh, didn’t work. I mean, I did, I guess for the short term, but then, um, you know, one of the things with entrepreneurship is that it makes you face, uh, someone you’ve been running from for a long time.
Speaker 1 (05:36):
And I, and I got that from ed, my lat, and he says that, you know, when you’re, when you’re an entrepreneur, you gotta face the person you’ve been running from and that’s yourself. Usually. Most people don’t ever do the work and really know who they are, what they want, why they are the way they are, and really challenge their beliefs and mindset and all that. And, uh, you know, for me it kinda just came to the surface. I was about seven, eight months into the journey and uh, and I, and I went through a real dark time. So I had really two specifically ones. The first one was more like, I, I’m not making any money. Like, what am I going to do? And that’s when I joined a mastermind. I started freelancing and I learned how to make money. So that was great. That wasn’t really as bad.
Speaker 1 (06:14):
The second time though, it was February of 2018 and it was truly the darkest time of my life. And I don’t say a lightly, but it was, it was tough. Um, I really was, I was in a bad space. So again, I was making money, but I just couldn’t figure out what was going on, why I felt the way I felt. I did have some debt. I had a definitely overinvested in myself. I had quite a bit of credit card debt. I think at that time it was like close to 40, maybe like $35,000 of credit card debt. Um, you know, I had money saved up and stuff, but I dunno, I for some reason still like was playing the balance transfer game. But I think that really took a toll on me and it really wiped me out. And I also didn’t have any support system and I also really didn’t understand why I was feeling the way I was feeling.
Speaker 1 (07:06):
I didn’t really understand how the mind worked. And, uh, I’m looking back. I mean it’s hard to say, but looking back, I’m really glad I went through it. So if you’re going through something right now, think about this, life is happening for you, not to you, but it’s not going to feel easy. And if you’re really struggling with something, the universe I think is trying to teach you a lesson. But I didn’t want to listen to that lesson. And one of the lessons for me was you got to stop doing everything. I was trying to literally be on YouTube, podcasts, blogging, writing, like I just tried to do all this stuff and it was too much. And that’s what led to just being tired and exhausted and that led to negative thoughts. And like I said, I was trying to pay off all this debt and just do all this stuff.
Speaker 1 (07:55):
And it was just at that time where I realized looking back, it was like if I would’ve just stopped doing all this stuff that wasn’t making me money and I just focused on writing out to pay down that debt, I would have actually made this stuff happen in my life. But instead I was trying to do everything. I didn’t have my VA yet. I didn’t have a podcast editor, I didn’t have a team. I was trying to do everything on my own. But that is the lesson I got looking back on it. So did I overcome this instantly? Absolutely not. And again, I’m glad I went through it because the stuff I learned at the rock bottom, darkest, darkest times of my life are now things that I can go to when things get tough and be like, you know what? It’s not as hard as it was back in February, 2020 19.
Speaker 1 (08:39):
It’s not, it’s not that hard. Try and be a depressed by the way, and run a brand called inspire your success. That’s tough. That’s tough to do. But, um, you know, I, I didn’t, I didn’t share all this. I kept all of this inside and tried to play it. Cool. Well, let me tell you, that’s one of the worst things you can do. And that’s why I started the episode saying, get help. You know, find people, talk to friends, talk to family, go to therapy, all these things I’m gonna talk about today. Get help. You can’t do all this alone. I’m the most stubborn person in the world. And you know, I’m getting a little choked up because I’ve been there, but you guys gotta get some help. Sometimes. It’s okay. There’s no shame in the game here. So let’s talk about some of the things that I tangibly did because again, the Wu works, but you got to know what to do.
Speaker 1 (09:27):
So the first thing I did is I started working with Jim Forton. I’s a transformational coach. He’s one of my mentors. Um, I, I’ve watched a free training. I heard him on a podcast and the guy was like speaking to me. He’s like, Hey, are you tired of going to all the events, work until your eyeballs bleed and not getting any results? And he just spoke directly to me. I’m like, ah, yes, that’s exactly me. Yes, I don’t, you know, I’m still not making the money I want to make. I’m not making the impact what’s going on. And that’s really when I started working with him, I learned a lot. I learned a lot about the subconscious mind and how it controls so much of our life and, and how it can just impact everything we do every single day. And that all of our childhood beliefs and patterns play out into adulthood if you don’t change them.
Speaker 1 (10:11):
And, um, I mean the stuff I learned, if you need to listen to another podcast that really can change your life and that will challenge you to your core, but really help you get real lasting results. Listen to Jim fourteens podcast. I’ll link to it in the show notes. It’s so good. The guy delivers is just as much value as you can for free. And the working in his coaching programs was just phenomenal and I still am learning lessons from him all the time. So that was one thing is I hired a coach. So maybe you can do that as well. Maybe it’s you know, some sort of coach or person. But again, you can’t do all this alone. The second thing is I did is that Jim talks a lot about creating success and changing yourself from the inside out. He talks about it as the be do have model.
Speaker 1 (10:54):
So who do I need to be so I can do the things I need to do to have the results I want to have. It’s very different than most people. Most people start with doing. So it’s like, Hey, I wanna make more money. What do I need to do? What do I need to do? I need to make more calls, right? More whatever I need to do. That’s not really the way you’re going to create lasting change. You might get some results, but if you’re not beating the right person, you’re not going to do the things consistently to have those results. And so when he talked about that a lot that really made a lot of sense is that you need to be the right person. And he said one of the best ways to become the person that you need to become is to reprogram your subconscious mind using self hypnosis and hypnotherapy.
Speaker 1 (11:35):
Now this might be a foreign concept to you. You might have no idea what I’m talking about. And that’s okay. Just you. Everyone’s in their own place. You’re, you’re exactly where you’re supposed to be right now. But this is a thing that really impacted my life and it’s actually impacted a lot of people in my life as well. So I did some self hypnosis, but I didn’t really understand what I was doing. So he’s like, go visit a hypnotherapist. You are in your head, you’re stressed out. And I was like, man, you’re, you’re, you’re probably right. So I went to this hypnotherapist and I, I’ve talked about it in I think another episode and it’s something I’m happy to talk to anyone about. But I went there and again, I got help. That’s the thing. And she really helped me out. She helped me get out of my way and helped me get over this anxiety, anxious feeling that led to depression and, and uh, just being sad and just like lazy and unmotivated cause I was so overwhelmed and so in my head that I just sabotage myself.
Speaker 1 (12:26):
And with hypnotherapy, again, you’re reprogramming your subconscious mind, which runs 95% of your day. So if you have 95% of your brain, the selling you, you’re not good enough. You’re a loser or whatever you’re telling yourself, that’s how you’re going to show up in the world. But what if you had a program to said, Hey, I’m more than enough. I can provide value to the world. I can make any income I want, I can do all this stuff. I don’t. You think you’re going to show up better. And the cool thing is, is that a hypnotherapy, something I’ve done, I did a lot in 2019 and I haven’t done any in 2020 but I still have all the tapes or the recording. So I listened to them sometimes as well. But it helped me, it helped my girlfriend. It’s helped my friends send so many people from entrepreneurs there because entrepreneurship is tough, you know, I’m not going to lie to you.
Speaker 1 (13:12):
Everyone wants to make it easy and all this freedom and stuff, but at the end of the day it’s tough and you need to have, you need to have tools in your arsenal to help you stay mentally strong because if you get mentally unfit, it’s, it’s just hard. I mean you’re making everything harder. It’s just battling yourself. And so that was one of the things that really helped me. And that kind of leads into the third thing that I did, which was really just study the mind. Like, have you ever really sat down and thought about your beliefs and your like your what, what kind of environment you got raised in, how you think about money, how you think about success and health and everything. I mean like studying the mind again does all goes back to that subconscious. That thing controls 95% of everything you do, everything you think over and over again every day.
Speaker 1 (14:01):
I mean the average person has anywhere between 30 to 70,000 thoughts a day. 91% of those studies have shown is the exact same as the day before. So you’re basically just running on autopilot and your subconscious does that to make life easier because you guys think about it. If you had to learn how to do everything every day, like think about it, you had to learn how to put your pants on, learn how to ride a bike, learn how to drive a car like that would be very, very difficult. So your subconscious is just a storage vault basically in a store is all the things you know how to do it. Habituates it and it lets you go through life. But if you don’t really know how it works and you and you are operating from all these old fears and old patterns of people telling you you’re not good enough or money’s really hard to come by or you’ve got to work hard, all that stuff that you might’ve learned growing up, that has a huge impact on your life.
Speaker 1 (14:50):
So the more you study the mind, the more you can understand how to make lasting change. Because if you think willpower is going to do it, willpower doesn’t work. It’s a finite resource. That’s why people try and use willpower. And then at the end of the day, they’re like, screw it. I’m going to eat that. I’m going to eat that pizza. I’m over that diet, whatever. Right? That stuff doesn’t work. You need to create change from the inside out. And it’s a multiple prong approach. But the more you can study the subconscious and the more you can understand how much that thing plays into your life, um, you can use it to your advantage. And that’s like, like I said, hypnotherapy, self hypnosis, meditation, all that stuff helps. So, um, again, focus on that thing because that controls everything. You know, your, your thoughts create how you feel and the actions you take and the behaviors and everything.
Speaker 1 (15:34):
So focus on the internal dialogue, use journaling, all that stuff and just keep learning about it. Again, I’m far from an expert. I just have done a lot of personal work here and done a lot of personal development, uh, writing and I, and I know a lot about it, but again, keep learning this stuff. The more you can change your mind, the better every area of your life can become. The fourth thing that I started doing was I quit hustling. Like I talked about at the beginning of the year. I was doing everything. I was still trying to work 50 to 80 to 90 hour weeks. I was doing everything in my business. Um, and a lot of it wasn’t doing anything. It wasn’t giving me results, but I just thought that’s what I had to do. So I quit hustling. Um, no, I’m not a fan of hustling and I am a fan of working, uh, smart working Intel working hard in a sense.
Speaker 1 (16:21):
Not long, but when you are working get it done. But yeah, I mean working 90 hours a week for me just wasn’t doing it. Like you need to hire people sometimes or just stop doing stuff that isn’t getting your results. Like I said, just don’t spend time and things you aren’t good at. That’s the quickest way to zap your energy. And again, energy is finite, just like willpower. So I quit hustling. I saw, I saw, worked less. I just focused on writing. I quit blogging. Uh, I still was kinda clinging to that a little bit in 2018 but I just quit. I literally just focus on writing for other people and that’s how I doubled my revenue in 2019 over 2018 and I worked a fraction of the time, so that was big. I had more time to do all this stuff, like learn about the mind and go to hypnotherapy and just take time off.
Speaker 1 (17:08):
You need time to recharge your brain. The fifth thing that I did was I stopped comparing myself to others. This is so big. I mean once you really get this, I mean man, it’s like you just have so much more freedom in your life. Like everything changes when you stop comparing you to anyone else. Even if you started a business at the exact same time as someone else, it’s not going to be the same as them. You can’t compare them to you because you have different skills, different beliefs, all that stuff I talked about with the subconscious, all of that, all your values, all that stuff is going to dictate your success and or your failure. So you can’t compare yourself to others. But I’ll tell you what, when you’re trying to run a brand called inspire your success and you want to reach millions of people and you want to speak on the biggest stages and you want to literally help people quit their jobs, pursue their passions, all that stuff, and you are comparing yourself to people that are 10 years in and you’re two years in.
Speaker 1 (18:11):
I’ll tell you what, that’s a good way to feel like garbage. And that’s what I did. I constantly compared myself to everyone else when in reality, the only person I should compare myself and the only person I do now is I compare me to me. I look back to January. You know where you’re listening to this. At the end of March, beginning of April, I just looked now to where I was last year. Last year I was coming out of this depression. I was figuring it out. Two years ago. I was barely making money. Three years ago. I had just, uh, I was thinking about quitting my job. You can only compare you to you. Please stop the comparisonitis. Stupid Instagram does this to everyone. Social media does this and it’s easy to do. So again, just remember that you’re in a bat. You’re not in a battle, but you can only compare you to you.
Speaker 1 (18:57):
There is no one else out there. You’re on your own schedule. You’re running your own race. Forget everybody else. The sixth thing that I did was really focused on self care. And I want to talk about this in a sense that you do need to take care of yourself, but I’ve also done too much self care. Like again, I think there’s a really a balance between the woo woo and then the doing. You can’t just like if you’ve ever watched the secret, they just talk their talk about like sitting there and like your Lamborghini shows up and you win the lottery. Like that is garbage. But at the same time you got people that are telling you to work 20 hours a day, that’s not going to work either. Like you know you’re going to burn out. That’s like going on a diet of chicken when you’ve been eating the worst foods ever and then you’re, you’ll wonder why you fail.
Speaker 1 (19:42):
You’re setting yourself up for failure. Right. So I think there’s a big thing about self care, which again I kind of talked about, but it’s, it’s taking care of your mind. It’s getting your thoughts out. Writing in a journal is talking to people. It’s not letting you get in your own head. Um, you know, it’s not comparing yourself. It’s exercising. It’s eating right. It’s yoga, meditation, whatever you want to do, everyone’s different, but you’ve got to take care of you. The T like people think that like taking care of yourself as selfish, but in reality it’s the exact opposite because the better you are, the better you’re going to show up for your partner, your kids, your dog, at your coworkers, your boss, whoever’s around you, strangers. Everyone will benefit when you’re the best version of you. So you gotta take care of yourself. Please don’t skip this.
Speaker 1 (20:28):
I did for pretty much all at 20, I mean 2018. Yeah, I didn’t really very much. That’s why I ended up in this rock bottom spot. Take care of you. You’re worth it. The better you are, the more you can earn, the more you can give, the more you can share with others. So take care of you, whatever that looks like. But again, still don’t just sit there and say, Oh, all the self care will help. Yes, it will help. But you still got to get up there and put it in the work too. And finally, uh, I just, I would say the seven thing and the final thing that I really did is, is I just forgave myself. I learned to really just, I just love myself. I was like, man, I’m so hard on myself and I don’t know, you know, maybe you’re, maybe you’re like that, maybe you’re not everyone’s different, but I’m a type a, I wanted, I wanted to quit my job and be making more than I did instantly and I beat myself up for not doing it.
Speaker 1 (21:18):
I beat myself up for not having a podcast, for not having a millionaire friends, for, for not being a professional golfer. I just constantly, again, it kind of was like comparing others, but I just beat myself up. I was my own worst enemy and I did that as a kid. I did that a lot cause I had kind of one of those childhoods, I feel like where, yeah, when I was short I was, I was teased, I was picked on, I was bullied, all that stuff. And so I always like wanting to prove everyone wrong and uh, that’s not the way to go through life. So learn to forgive yourself. Everyone makes mistakes. You’re human being, you’re, you’re, you’re bound to do it. So, you know, whenever you go, going through right now, just remembered that you gotta forgive yourself. You gotta can’t focus on the past cause it doesn’t dictate your future.
Speaker 1 (22:04):
Look, I never thought I’d be here right now talking about this stuff, but I’m so glad I went through it because hopefully one person, if one person listened to this episode and get some help, or it goes hypnotherapy or quits comparing themselves or takes care of themselves, whatever, that excites me. If 500 people hate this episode and say it’s garbage, I don’t care as long as I help one person with this, because I know what it’s like to be alone and struggling and really, really sad. So hopefully this resonates with you guys. Mental health is, is vital. I mean, again, you see these stats of anxiety and depression on the rise. That is so sad and a lot of it is because of the internet. It’s because social media and it’s really because we don’t learn any of this stuff in school, which just pisses me off.
Speaker 1 (22:49):
But it gives people like me an opportunity to help others and a lot of other great, great brands, great people out there sharing their journey. So if you’re going through something, just remember you’re not alone. Get some help. If I can help, I mean just let me know. Shoot me an email, DME, whatever. I want to help you. I want to give you some resources. All the things I’ve done, and again, I know this wasn’t really as much about freelancing, but I want you to know that it’s not all about just making money. You know, I just had that episode about making 20 K in a month. That was great. But like I said, nothing changed. I was the same me. But luckily I had went through all this stuff that really allowed me to be a version of me that I liked. I learned to love myself.
Speaker 1 (23:31):
I learned, I really appreciate all the hard work, all this stuff that I’d been through. So hopefully you can figure it out. One thing from this, and I ask you just to let me know what was most beneficial because I know everyone out there is in their own place with their own business, own career, family lives, all that stuff, all this stuff running around in your head. So hopefully this was helpful. Again, I’m passionate about it. I’m going to be sharing more about it because there’s, there’s no vulnerabilities, a superpower. And if you’re a writer, man, the more vulnerable you are, the more people will attract to you. And so I’m happy to share this stuff. I’m happy I went through it. And that’s the thing. If you’re going through it, keep going. You can’t just say, I’m, I’m in. I’m in hell right now.
Speaker 1 (24:15):
Now you’ve got to say, I’m going through it. I’m almost on the other side. Those little things like that are what will shape your future and create the destiny and the, and the life that you really deserve. So hopefully that was helpful. Guys. Again, thank you for listening. Uh, just really, really appreciate it. I’m so excited with the podcast, the brand and just people listening and tuning in. So share this with someone. If someone else going through it, maybe they’re a nine to five person, maybe they’re an entrepreneur. Just share it with anyone that you think would benefit from this. Because again, everyone needs some help out there. You can’t go through this crazy world alone. So get some help and uh, just keep going guys, and thank you again for listening. As always. I appreciate you and I hope you have an Epic day.
Subscribe for New Episodes
Thanks for tuning in to this episode of the Inspire Your Success Podcast! If the information shared in these weekly conversations and interviews have helped you in your business journey, please head over to iTunes, subscribe to the show, and leave an honest review.
Your reviews and feedback will not only help us continue to deliver great, helpful content, but it will also help us reach even more amazing entrepreneurs just like you!