Life on Your Terms Interviews

Debra Russell

"God grant me the creativity and willingness to make the most of the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference."

- Debra Russell's take on the Serenity Prayer

Today we have a very special article and interview I've been dying to publish for months (plus there are a few free tool downloads down below too!). Life is not meant to tackle on your own! Which brings us to today's topic...

Who's Debra Russell?

Most of us know who the author of Awaken The Giant Within is. In fact, most of us have learned a ton from him and his work. His stuff has changed my world in more ways than I can count -- from starting the businesses I have to switching to eating mostly plants, and plenty of things in between. But as I've realized the power of teams, I've come to pay more attention to the people who support the rock stars. Many of you probably hadn't heard of Debra Russell until earlier this week. She gave top-tier support to one of the top personal growth figures for decades. She was the one on stage pumping up over 4,000 people at his live events and changing their lives when he wasn't on stage.

Do Something that Matters Amy Clover

"The only real task any of us needs to worry about is this: Find your own way of helping people. Then go out and do it."

Time to Get Inspired!

Okay team! In our Ask the Reader post, I told you this week was all about you, and it would not be complete without sharing a few inspiring stories from our community. So here's our January Reader Spotlight. It's short and sweet because I know how busy you all are in making your big goals reality - hearing your 2013 plans earlier this week blew my mind! Our biggest goal at Live Your Legend is to inspire you to believe in possibility, and the best way I know is to show "ordinary" people doing the things most of the world only dreams of. That is the purpose of our monthly Living Legends Reader Spotlights. Oh, and to give you the chance to help support the dreams of our community. Realize that the stories you read about on this site are not as out of reach as some like to believe.

inspire whats possible

"If you don’t know what you want, pick something that might be it, and practice it. Real, deep, profound passion requires your focus, engagement, and daily practice."

-Barrie Davenport

*Time Sensitive: As a little Christmas and New Year's bonus, today my good friend Barrie Davenport and I are giving away five free copies of her new book, The 52-Week Passion Project (which happens to make for the perfect compliment to our Live Off Your Passion career course). All you have to do is leave a comment telling us one of your interests, passions or hobbies - we want to get you thinking about what excites you in the new year! Your answer must be in by this Friday to win a copy of her book. If you're reading this in email, click here to participate. Now it's time to hear from one of my favorite passion experts! *****

Learning from the Right People...

When starting out in a new industry or career, we all have people we look up to. Those we constantly study and admire (and whom we might even feel a tad of envy for here and there).

do something that matters

"The only difference between impossible and normal is choosing to hang around the people doing the things you thought couldn't be done."

- Anonymous

Yesterday a big dream of mine came true...

I stood up on the TEDx stage in San Francisco and gave an 18-minute talk (17:51 to be exact). The topic was "The Work You Can't NOT Do & Surrounding Yourself with the People Who Won't Let You Fail". It was the most invigorating/exhausting/terrifying/emotional/awesome/humbling/surreal day I've possibly ever had. It was perfect.

TEDx Golden Gate Park

And the best part about it? You guys made it possible. Without this community I could have never stood on that stage. In fact without you, I would have never even known about the event - one of you told me about it in our Facebook Action Group last month! As usual, I cannot express my gratitude enough. But hopefully this post is a start.

how ordinary people do the impossible

 "The only difference between ordinary and extraordinary are the actions you decide to take."


Everyone starts out as ordinary.

They do the things everyone else seems to do. But then at some point they decide that's not enough. For whatever reason they decide they are going to take a stand and do things a little (or a lot) differently. It is this decision that turns the ordinary into a living legend.  Then they go to do the things that most people tell them are impossible - the things most only dream of. And it's that transition that embodies the work we do at Live Your Legend and the community we have all created here. The amazing thing is that so many of you are those people. And it's an honor to have you among us. You make this community what it is, so it's important that we highlight the amazing things you're doing, and that's exactly why I created the Living Legends Reader Spotlights. Last month well over a hundred of you submitted your stories of what you're doing to live your legends. I was inspired. To be honest, I was actually a little blown away. So today the focus is on you. Each month I will profile 10-15 of you and send your story out to our community of over 16,000.

Inspire us with your story LYL Reader Spotlight

“We don't accomplish anything in this world alone ... and whatever happens is the result of the whole tapestry of one's life and all the weavings of individual threads from one to another that creates something.”

- Sandra Day O'Connor

Letting Our Community Inspire

In honor of Live Your Legend's first full year on earth (as of tonight at midnight), and my eigth year helping people do work they love, it's time to step it up a notch. And the only way we can do it is with you. Last week I asked you how we could take this community to a new level. How we could bring us all together to inspire, help and support each other to Live Our Legends. Your responses nearly put me to tears - both in your praise and your ideas. The most invigorating ideas included:

chris guillebeau 100 startup

"Your possibilities are unlimited, but it all begins with the deliberate choice to think differently."

— Chris Guillebeau

Can a Startup be Less Risky than a Normal Job?

I spent some time with Chris Guillebeau last week hearing some pretty interesting ideas - his answer to the above question was one of them. He was on tour for his new book, The $100 Startup, which recently hit #3 on the WSJ and #6 on the New York Times bestseller lists. His message is powerful and he does a damn good job turning some conventional wisdom on its head (where most of it belongs :)). Chris has done more positive work for the area of creative careers and living life on your terms, than possibly anyone else out there - through his Art of Non Conformity site, The World Domination Summit, Travel Hacking Cartel and The $100 Startup, aside from all kinds of charity work and mentorship. I have no idea how he does it all.

Simon Sinek Start with Why

"The goal is not to do business with everybody who needs what you have. The goal is to do business with people who believe what you believe."

- Simon Sinek, Start with Why

Early last year I came across one sentence that turned out to be the single most profound business concept and tool of 2011 (and perhaps my lifetime). It caused me to fully rebrand and reposition Live Your Legend as well as my investment business. I believe it has everything to do with why Live Your Legend has experienced the rapid growth and success it has. It's only fitting that I share this with you as the closing to our "Monetize Your Passion Online" series. The man who taught me this lesson was Simon Sinek.  In 2009 he wrote a book called Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action. Within a few years that book, and the concept behind it, literally swept across the world. Simon Sinek is now considered one of the preeminent thinkers both on leadership strategy and passionate work around the world. He often speaks upwards of 20-25 times a month and does much of his work with the United States Military. He's been invited to do work with groups like Microsoft, Dell, SAP, Intel, Chanel, various government groups and Members of the United States Congress. He's also presented his ideas to the Ambassadors of Bahrain and Iraq, at the United Nations and to the senior leadership of the United States Air Force. This guys' the real deal.

Lori Deschene Tiny Buddha

"Happiness isn't getting everything you want. It's appreciating what you have and staying open to the limitless possibilities before you."

~Lori Deschene, author of Tiny Buddha

*Important note: Be sure to read to the end to have a chance to win a free copy of Lori Deschene's newest book: Tiny Buddha - Simple Wisdom for Life's Hard Questions. Take 20 seconds to tell us one of your hardest life questions in the comments and you'll be entered to win. If you're reading this in email, I suggest you click here to read it on the site to participate. *****

Creating Happiness

A few years ago a struggling writer and someone a tad bit lost in the world, decided she was going to take to the online world to see if she could both get some help and offer what help she could to others. She first started a simple Twitter account where she posted a quote a day. Something inspiring about happiness, purpose, embracing fear, love and all else. Just a few words a day. But she did it every day. Fast forward to today and that Twitter account now has over 241,000 followers. Her Facebook page has over 72,000 fans. It turned out she wasn't the only one struggling with these big topics. A couple years ago she also created a website and blog, called Tiny Buddha, as a place to write deeper articles to further explore our biggest challenges.

When you help people, interesting things happen...

Her site now serves as a virtual lighthouse for those of us (all of us, really) who need a little direction. There are hundreds of contributors (I've even been fortunate enough to write a few articles for her). And it's a damn bright lighthouse at that. Since the day Tiny Buddha went live, the site as received 8.5 million visits and 16 million page views. To put that into perspective, that is in the absolute top tier of all websites on the planet. People from every country in the world routinely visit the site, and her following is now over 300,000 people strong. The amazing thing is that none of this existed a few years ago. Before then no one had heard of Lori Deschene or Tiny Buddha.