Thank you for listening to The Champion Forum Podcast with Jeff Hancher! How would your life look different if you could realize your full potential? This week I’m excited to welcome Paul Martinelli! As a successful businessman, Paul understands what it takes to build a company. Still, his greater interest currently lies in understanding what it takes for people to reach their full potential. In this episode, Paul shares how finding the right mentor helped him overcome self-doubt, why you should get too comfortable, and how to redefine your self-image.
About Paul Martinelli
Paul founded his company At Your Service with only $200 and a used vacuum. Over the next X years, he turned his small business into a multi-million-dollar business. Since then, he has built and sold multiple multi-million dollar businesses, including co-founding The John Maxwell Team, a globally recognized public speaking and training organization with over 20,000 members. Today, Paul is a prominent speaker and leader of the Empowered Living Community, boasting over 2.3 million members.
I grew up with a terrible speech impediment. At that time, I didn’t realize that most people who stutter have an emotional reason, not a neurological reason. I thought there was something wrong with me, but really it was a result of my home life. That whole situation played a role in my self-esteem. I developed a coping mechanism where I would make fun of myself before anyone else had an opportunity. Most of us believe that our environment and DNA will determine our path. However, my siblings and I grew up in the same environment with similar DNA, and I was the only one who seemed to be struggling. Everything changed when I started getting around people who challenged me to rethink my mindsets.
The Value of Mentorship
Proximity is power, so I determined that I had to get close to people who had the life I wanted. I went to Patrick Hayes, a retired businessman who wanted to mentor young businessmen, and the first thing he did was give me a copy of Think and Grow Rich. Patrick never taught me what to do; he taught me how to think. Instead of thinking from my circumstances and limitations, he taught me to challenge my convictions and reform my belief in myself.
Take a Chance
You should be intolerant of any environment that is not conducive to your growth. Sometimes people get very comfortable in their current situation, even if they are not growing. Most people wait too long before stepping out and taking a new opportunity. It’s uncomfortable to leave something good, and the time never feels just right. I had a chance to sell my cleaning business and partner with Bob Proctor. It was hard to do, but in the end, I sold my company, paid him 300,00 to start teaching his material, and built my second multi-million-dollar business.
Redefining your self-image
Everyone has potential, but not everyone will realize it. You will never out-perform the image you have of yourself. The picture you have of yourself determines your thoughts and actions you take. Battling self-doubt is a daily battle, but making the right choices will change your life. Remember that you can change the facts of your life if you understand the truth about who you are. That’s why I love mentoring and challenging people to do what they know that they should do. You will be successful when you do what you know how to do at peak performance.
What is your favorite question to ask people you admire? - “Why do you think that?” I want to understand the context of somebody’s thinking. I don’t just want to know what they think; I want to know why.
What are you working to improve right now? - - I study the classics, reread Think and Grow Rich every year, and listen to audiobooks while I work out.
If you could have dinner with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be? - Rush Limbaugh, I met Rush once, and I only had a half-hour with him. Whether you agreed with him or not didn’t matter, he understood the world, and he knew his argument.
What makes you most proud? - I’m most proud that I’m always in process. I’m not satisfied with where I’m at, and I’m always committed to improving myself.
The key to overcoming self-doubt is to fight it every single day. When you have self-doubt, you have to take massive, immediate action in the opposite direction. What causes you to have self-doubt? What situations do you avoid because of your self-doubt? For each of those situations, come up with an opposite action that you can take. Massive action does not have to be expensive or time-consuming. It could be as simple as scheduling a meeting with someone you think is “too good for you,” signing up for your first 5k race or verbally rejecting the negative thought.
When was the last time you took a risk and accepted a new opportunity? Have you allowed yourself to get too comfortable with where you are? Taking that first step is challenging and uncomfortable, but it could be the very decision that guarantees your long-term success. If it has been a few years since you stepped out and looked for a new opportunity, this is your sign! The labor market is still competitive, and this could be your chance to take on a new challenge with a higher pay grade.
Networking relationships can help create change in your life faster than self-improvement alone. I want to challenge you to find a person who is where you want to be and start getting their attention! Find what they love and start serving them. If they have a child in your local basketball organization, share their fundraisers on social media and show up to their events. If they are passionate about fighting cancer and raising money for St. Judes Research Center, start getting involved with that charity. When you make yourself an asset to them and the things they care about, you will have influence when you approach them about mentorship.