Show notes for this episode:
Do you have people in your life who will doubt you, judge you, and act like it's really weird that you want to build a business, improve your life, make big changes, do all this self-development stuff, learn new skills and just really push the boat out?
Well, if that's the case, then this podcast episode is definitely for you. This is a big, big issue. In fact, it's really sad when I see it happening because if you're listening to this episode of the podcast, if you follow me, chances are, you're probably quite ambitious.
And you know, there's loads of people out there who are really ambitious and they want to do these amazing things. And it's just so sad when they have this desire to go and achieve something incredible, but then they allow people around them to push this desire down and pull them down to their level because they're doubtful, they're miserable, and they don't want you to grow.
Like at the end of the day, people around you don't want you to hit your goals a lot of the time, right? Some people around you don't want you to be successful. They don't want you to make more money than them, get more great things than them, reach your own potential.
Because if you do that, if you step out of your comfort zone and make this amazing stuff happen for yourself, you're shining a beacon on them and then showing them, well, clearly they're not trying hard enough.
Clearly they're not reaching their potential. Clearly, the delusions they have about what's a normal amount of money to earn, and you know, about luck, and about things like that, to do a success that will be shattered.
Because if you, the normal person that they live with, or they're friends with, or in their family has done it, there's no reason why they can't do it. A lot of people will be scared for you to push through and actually achieve things.
So today I really wanted to talk about this, talk about my philosophy, about dealing with people who are negative about your success and just come up with some strategies for how to deal with it. And I also want to tell you some funny stories about what happened to me when I broke the mold and started to go towards success for myself.
So, first of all, it's important to know, my family are the most amazing people ever. Okay. They're really supportive. They're so cool. Parents are still together, you know, which is amazing. Just amazing family. So anything I say in this podcast episode, I want you to remember, I have the best family ever, and it wasn't their fault.
But the thing is, even if you have the most amazing support of family, they might still end up blocking you from getting success subconsciously just because of the belief systems that they have surrounding business money and all of these things.
And it's not their fault, these things have been passed down from generation to generation. It’s because of the people they hang out with as well. And this, you know, it's a huge, heavy web of stuff that's preventing them from breaking through the mold and they're just passing it onto you. So you can have the most amazing supportive family and this stuff can still happen.
I remember one time when I was living with my parents before I started selling on Amazon, I was really interested in business. Business to me just sounded like the coolest thing ever. I bought myself a copy of the 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss.
To me, this book just nailed absolutely everything I wanted in life. It's basically to make a shit ton of money, not really have to do much work, not have to have a nine to five job, be able to do a lot of the stuff online on my laptop, which is where I like to be, and just pretty much be wherever I want - travel, see the world, and just have a lot of fun.
The book just.. it was the perfect book. No wonder the thing was so successful. As a side note, everybody who was in my demographic, my age group, who I have told about this book, with pretty much no exception has bought it on the spot.
I've shown this book to several people who are similar age to me when I was like 22 or 23. And I've shown it to other people who have been around that same age. And in all occasions where I've even mentioned the book they've gone on to Kindle or Google Books or iBooks and they bought it right there when I'm standing with them.
That proves just how powerful this concept of the book was. Anyway, I bought a copy of the book, like a physical copy, and brought it home into my house. So just to put this in context, my family is kind of creativity-oriented, who is interested in music and the arts and culture - these kinds of things, not exactly business-oriented. You know, they’re not really into that kind of thing, it's just not their thing.
So I bring this book home and I went to university and studied music, and I've just been focused on music my whole life so this caused a lot of disruption in my house. I was doing something way out of the ordinary by even thinking about a book like this, let alone bring it into the house and reading it.
I remember having dinner and my dad said to me, you know, these get-rich-quick scams have been going on for decades. He said to me, even in the eighties, you'd see these adverts in the newspaper, which would be get-rich-quick scams and they weren't real then. And they're not real now.
He was basically just being really honest, which I really appreciate, about his own beliefs, about making money, and about his version of what it is to be successful. To him, to have a business, you pretty much already have to be a millionaire. You already have to be greedy. You know, that kind of whole mindset is how he feels about business. And I don't blame him. That's how I felt too. But anyway, that was his belief about the 4-Hour Workweek.
That was my first encounter of kind of resistance against me wanting to do this stuff. And again, it's not my dad's fault. It just wasn't. I would have had the same reaction a year before, but actually one of my friends was getting successful in business.
And if something crazy happens or something, someone you know gets amazing results, if you're not a negative person, and if you believe in yourself, then if you see your friend getting crazy results in something, it's like one of two things can happen.
One, you become the negative person and you try and pull them down. Subconsciously in most cases, right. Or number two, you get inspired and you want to do the same thing yourself.
Number two happened to me, fortunately. So therefore I knew it was possible. So when I heard about the 4-Hour Workweek, I was like, well, this surely is one way of doing it. Cause I know that he mentioned the book, right? So I was like, well, it's real, you know, this is what I wanted to do.
Anyway, that was my first encounter. The second thing that was very, very clear was when I ordered a credit card. So I wanted to get started with Amazon. Picture this. I wanted to start on Amazon. This was around about January 2015, and I had no money. I had nothing at all. At that point I didn't even have a job. Okay. I had no income. I was at my parents' house. And I needed some capital.
Now, the good thing is, I didn't have expenses. I didn't have a mortgage to pay. I didn't have kids to look after. So in one way I was okay. But I still had no money. So I needed some capital to buy some stock to get started. So I got this credit card. It was an Aqua credit card with 600 pounds on it. Ridiculous. Just ridiculous interest rate. I don't even know what it was. Something like 40% APR or something horrendous.
It was one of the first credit cards I paid off and just got rid of when things started to go well. In fact, they upped my limit to like four grand. Eventually I just got rid of it because the interest level was so crazy. Anyway, ordered this card, it comes to my house, and my mum sees the letter. So she sees the Aqua logo. And I think she she's had one of those cards in the past and it rings alarm bells for her.
She's like, instantly associating this with all the trouble you can get into with debt. Whatever it is, whether it's having to write it off, having debt collectors chasing you, and all the bad stuff that can happen with that. That's what she's thinking. So she kind of sat me down and wanted to have a talk.
She was like, oh, I know, so you've got yourself a credit card and I was just a little bit concerned because you do know that you have to pay the money back? And then she started saying, thing is with these business things is they just don't always work out. Sometimes it will fail. And then you get into a lot of problems and I don't want you to get into any debt.
Now, look, this was coming from a very good place. And if I had a kid who just got a credit card, I'd have probably the exact same reaction, because like, damn it, those companies will come after you, if you can't make the payments. They don't care. So it was definitely good parenting. I think it was actually awesome.
But again, for me, this was another bit of resistance I had to push through to keep going with my goals and actually buy some products and get the Amazon business moving.
In the end, I ended up using 300 pounds to buy a little course on how to actually do the Amazon thing and learn how to set up the account and what products to buy and all that stuff. I used the other 300 pounds to buy the stock and did a bit of arbitrage got started and, you know, started to make things happen.
So that was another little bit of resistance right there I had to deal with. And it was challenging. But one thing I started to realize at this point is that now, because I believed in myself so much, I started to use this resistance to my advantage.
Now, any time someone doubted me, any time I felt a bit of this resistance, you can either let it break you or you can let it make you stronger. And now it was starting to make me stronger.
So I was like, okay, mommy. I said, look, don't worry. I didn't want mom to worry at the end of the day. So I was like, don't worry. You know, I'm only going to spend it. I really genuinely feel I'm making an investment, I'm not going to be buying clothes with this credit card. It's not going to be going on any consumer goods. It's just going to go on stock. I feel I can make a return.
So I made a promise to myself, look, I'm going to make this work even more now because I want to be right. I don't want my mum to be right and be worried. I don't want to get into all this debt. So this actually gave me even more motivation to make the business work.
And this is another point I wanted to make. If you have resistance, you can turn that into motivation. You can turn it into that. I'm going to prove this person wrong. I'm going to make it real.
Now this, by the way, this is quite short-lived motivation. I don't think that kind of motivation will last for years, but it can certainly get you through a bad day if something's not going right. I'm going to prove this person wrong and not let these obstacles overcome me, et cetera, et cetera. It can give you a spike of motivation. It certainly did. For me, that was one of the things that really kicked off my arbitrage.
Interestingly, like a week or two later, I bought my call blocker, which is a super cheap product I found for five pounds, I'm selling for 40 pounds. I made 900 pounds profit in a week doing arbitrage. So very, very soon after this credit card thing, I managed to prove that the money was well invested. I was already profitable and I could have paid the card off at that point. Although I didn't, I just kept reinvesting the money and again, there's resistance, but you can turn this stuff around.
Other instances, whenever I would play any video on self-development in my house, it just didn't go down very well. Usual content my family watches is music stuff. They love Later... with Jools Holland. They love music, videos, classical music, concerts and stuff. I love all that stuff too. Also comedy. Usually quite cynical comedy. The IT Crowd, Ricky Gervais stuff, you know, things like that. British comedy is usually what's being played in my house. So definitely nothing to do with Tony Robbins or any of that kind of American self-development stuff.
Anyway, I was finding that this stuff was really helping me because if there's one thing the American self-development people can do is they can get you fired up to go out and build a business.
As I was sitting in the living room in my house watching Tony Robbins videos. In fact, if you go to YouTube, they've got his events that he's run over the course of like five days and there's like eight hours of content. So I've watched basically everything he's got on YouTube, all the super, super long things. I've watched all of it because I found that it just really helped me to get motivated, to put things in perspective, and just to believe in myself.
Anyway, any time a member of my family would walk in, and one of these things would be playing, you could just sense that they just hate it. It just rubbed them the wrong way. And they just think I'm like, I've gone crazy and joined some kind of cult or they think I'm just weird, and the thing is all a scam. It just rings alarm bells to them.
And so that was another thing that I found again, just more of this resistance, more of this resistance that you just have to fight through. But one thing that happened is like, as I just kept watching the videos, the first few weeks is the hardest. It's kind of like quitting smoking.
I smoked for years and then quit. The hardest bit is in the beginning. Cause you don't know if you're fully sold on actually quitting yet. You don't know if it's a real thing you're going to do like a life choice or if it's just a fad. And then in the next few weeks, you'll be back on smoking again.
Same thing with this self development stuff, the first few weeks were the hardest, cause your family don't know whether this is just a phase you're going through or if it's really changed. So that was difficult. You have to stick to your guns.
But after a few weeks, this stops just being a phase and it becomes like a life choice. And like, this is the new you and a few months down the line, instead of it being like, ooh, what's this weird Tony Robbins video that he's watching, instead it becomes, oh, well it's Oliver watching this video again, just doing the thing that he does. It just becomes normal, almost part of the furniture in the house, you know, it's like a standard thing.
So these were a few examples of resistance that I encountered while building my business, and you'll notice that it pretty much all came from family. In fact, one huge piece of advice that I would recommend to you is to, as a rule, stay very quiet about what you're doing. Stay very quiet. You might feel really motivated, excited to tell everyone about this new thing you're doing. You're selling on Amazon, you're looking into launching private labels, you know, whatever.
You might expect the same kind of excitement from the people you speak with. You might expect them to say, oh, that's so cool, so you're going to build a business, oh, that's amazing, it's a really good opportunity, you know, et cetera, et cetera.
But what you might find is, if you say this to someone who's in a negative mind set, which a lot of people are, actually work out very bad for you. They might start being really cynical. They might start making fun of you in a joking way, but with an undertone of kind of meaning it. And they might just start trying to talk you out of it. And it all goes back to the stuff I said in the beginning.
Some people want to pull you down so you don't show them up. So the best strategy really, except for the people who can't help it, like your close immediate family, I would just keep quiet. I would just keep quiet and just do this stuff and just get results. And rather than telling people how amazing this opportunity is, show them because now people in my family and a lot of people who know me just think I'm a freak.
They just label me as like the weirdo who out of nowhere, went from someone who just makes music and is really fairly laid back, to now has just made millions online. Or I'm almost like a freak, but it's just accepted that I'm just like, you know, they're just like, I dunno how he does it. I don't know how this happened. I don't know how this business has gone so well.
I was like, well, are you forgetting? All the times I was watching Tony Robbins for eight hours in a row, the time I was locked in my room doing eBay listings when I had an eBay business before Amazon to build capital, the time when I got my credit card, the time I spent watching course after course after course, all the boxes that were in the house, all the price, the product research I was doing, you know, like they forget all of that stuff.
And all of a sudden, now you're just a freak who's just got all this success and exactly the same thing can happen to you.
But the key is just to keep a little bit quiet about it in the process and just accept that sometimes people don't realize that, you know, they're pouring water on your bonfire, they're dampening your enthusiasm, and that they're pulling you down and they don't realize they're doing it.
So it's good to just be a little bit strategic about this. Like you would be choosing a product to sell. Have a strategy. And then when you have a strategy, stick to it and everything else will fall into place.
All right. Hope today's episode has been good for you. Absolutely go crush it this week. We're getting closer and closer to quarter four. So that's always exciting. And I'll catch you next Monday.