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Chelsea’s Quotes – Volume I

By Motivation 10 Comments

I have had several people come up to me after my speeches and ask if I was going to post “Chelsea Quotes” again?

For those of you who followed us on our 50-City North American tour, every week I  posted quotes from Chelsea (my wife) while being on the road. Some made you think, most were strange and a lot of them made me laugh and I hope they made you do the same.

I wanted to bring it back because lately she has been full of good, motivational and funny quotes so every now and again I will post some of Chelsea’s best quotes. Oh, how much fun it is to work with you spouse!

“Babe you can’t leave these windows open at night. What if someone crawls up here and murders us?”

* in relation to us living on the 5th floor in one of the safest cities in America and her actually being serious

“Well, you shouldn’t have married such a funny wife.”
* in relation to me asking her to stop making me laugh while I was sick

“You should incorporate dance into your next keynote.”
* in relation to her being serious after watching this video

“Do it, or I will pour honey on your knees.”
* in relation to me not wanting to take a shower

“Guys with gold pinky rings… realllllllly freak me out!”
* in relation to…I 100% agree

“My PMS is really intense today so I am going to need you to tread lightly which means I need you to go away.”
* in relation to me just standing there

“I’d watch Jurassic Park.”
* in relation to the first thing she said when we woke up

“Do you know where a donut shop is around here?”
* in relation to her asking a stranger this question while she had a huge cookie in her hand and the stranger for sure judged us!

“Um, what is more American than a cinnamon roll?”
* in relation to… EVERYTHING!!!

This is my life. I am so thankful Chelsea is my wife because everyday she makes me laugh, pushes me to be better and I know I won’t ever have a boring day as long as I am with her. Take some time to write down some of the quotes you hear this week, they are fun to look back on and can be a great way to reflect on memories.

Take time to tell those who matter most to you, that you love them and are thankful they are in your life!

As always…

Dream BIG,

Question: What was your favorite quote from Chelsea this time and do you want me to continue to do articles like this every now and again?

3 Traffic Building Tools for Twitter

By Motivation, Productivity 2 Comments

Do you want more Twitter followers? Some say “yes,” others say “I guess” and several say “I don’t use Twitter.”

For those who say they don’t, it is time to utilize this powerful tool and to stop looking at it as the social media for those who have”ADD.”

More than just collecting followers and pushing out 140 characteristics every 15 minutes, Twitter can be used to influence, connect, search and get opinions on current events.

I use Twitter to see what is happening in my world (#Speaking #NSA14 #Toastmasters #Leadership #CommunicationProblems #Authors #Question #Scuba). The (#) tool can be very powerful if you know how to use it and to connect with those who are interested in the same things you are.

I just reached 10,000 followers on Twitter with a goal to have 20,000 quality followers by the end of the year. In order to build traffic on Twitter, respond to ‘mentions’ and search for related topics I use three tools:

Click to Tweet: Allows you to embed a link in your blog posts where readers can click to tweet a line of text in your post. “Winners do things losers don’t want to do.” Dr. Phil (click to tweet)

Hootsuite: Allows you to auto-schedule tweets for a variety of social media channels and allows you to set up streams so you can pay attention to # you like. Every other Sunday, I sit down for about an hour and plug in about 100 leadership and communication related quotes into Hootsuite. This allows me to post to my followers at least three times a day. Instead of finding new content to post, I can now spend time answering questions, replying to mentions and sharing other articles I read throughout the week.

JustUnFollow: I think they need to change the name of this app. This powerful tool lets you find people who are interested in the same things you are (#leadership #communication) or part of the same groups you are (@Toastmasters @NSAspeaker) and follow them. This app has a tremendous amount of features that are worth checking out.

All three of these tools have a free option. I pay for the upgraded Hootsuite and UnFollow services (starting out I didn’t) and I think the free versions work great depending on your needs.

Growing your Twitter following is important because it will help you reach more people with your voice and connect with those who like what you like.

Don’t take your followers for granted or think “ugh, I only have 154 followers.” I did that at the beginning and it was the wrong thing because I didn’t think I could have real connections online; I was wrong! Actually connect with those you follow and those who follow you. This is your online tribe and they can be one of your biggest assets. Treat them well and add value to their life!

Get to

Dream BIG,

Question: What others apps or websites do you use to help grow and/or monitor your Twitter?  

Why you should be more self-first!

By Motivation 2 Comments

This isn’t a hard thing to grasp, “You can’t give what you don’t have!” yet why can it be so hard to remember at times?

If you don’t have energy, you can’t give energy.
If you don’t love yourself, it will be difficult to love others.
You can’t teach what you haven’t learned.


Are you sacrificing sleep and not eating healthy in an effort to get more done?
Are you hard on yourself when things go wrong or you make a mistake?

Are you digesting enough new information on a regular basis to stretch yourself?

It is time to be more self-first so you can give more to those who need it most!

The past month I have been going so fast I forgot to take care of myself and those important relationships. I have worked out irregularly. I have been teaching more than I have been learning. I have not done as many “fun/non-work related” things as I have liked.

I have been so focused on the success of my businesses and helping others, I forgot to take care of the most important person, me! In a society where we can look down on those who are selfish, it can be hard to rationalize giving more to ourselves so we should redefine it as self-first (as my wife likes to say). The more you give to yourself, the more you can give to others!

But if we are serious about changing the world, helping others and making a difference then we have to start with us! So while we continue to do the 31 Days of Kindness Challenge, I want to encourage you to look at how you are being kind to yourself.  What are you doing to be happy, have more energy and love yourself?

Should you go on a walk right now, set your phone down and look around outside?
Could you write down three things you have accomplished in the past three years that make you feel proud?
Can you take 30 minutes tonight to spend time with someone you love where you can laugh, play cards and have fun?

Yesterday I sat under a tree looking out at the water for a couple hours, read and enjoyed the sun. I slept in today, playing tennis with a friend on Saturday and am getting to work at a normal time. I learned from an old boss, “There will always be work to do, so learn to to be ok with never being finished, but always be hungry to do more.” 

So you should be more self-first because the more you give yourself, the more you can give others and we can all benefit from what you can have to offer! As always…

Dream BIG,

“Everybody wants to change the world. Nobody wants to change themselves.” ~Leo Tolstoy

How to get over the past and focus on the future!

By Motivation, Uncategorized 6 Comments

This post comes from Stephani Morris from Brooklyn, MI when she asked, “How do you get over the past and focus on the future?”

Whether your past is a good thing or bad, it can hold you back if you dwell on it for too long. I know people who won awesome awards and they never did anything after because they glued themselves to that one accomplishment. I know people who have life stories similar to the ones you see in a Lifetime movie and they stay so bitter because of their past that they can’t move on.

Let your past be stepping stones to your next success – not an anchor in which you think you have to stay (tweet). It’s time to get over the past, no matter how good or bad, and start focusing on the future.

You should be happy you have experienced the good, the bad and the ugly! As a leader, your past helps you relate and connect to more people and it helps you make decisions today that will dictate your future!

Ways you can get over the past and focus on the future:

Set up your vision board!
Get those scissors out, those old magazines you have thrown in the corner and set up a vision board of what you want your life to look like. This will help keep you focused and a visual reminder we can have what we want in life.

Ask yourself if you are being insane?
The definition of insane according to Albert Einstein is “Doing the same thing over and expecting different results.” Are you doing the same things to try and get over the past? Are you doing the same things that are keeping you stuck where you have been? What is something else you can try today to get you focused on the future and remind yourself to let it go (insert Disney theme song here).

Drop the negative people in your life!
You become who you surround yourself by. If you are around negative people, you too will be negative. If you surround yourself with those who are focused on the past… guess what? You too will do the same. It’s time to find people who are ambitious, respect their past but look to find ways to improve their future. Who can you get rid of in your life who is holding you back? Sounds brutal, but you know who they are!

Focus on yourself first!
Sounds selfish? Good, it should! Until you take care of yourself, you can’t take care of anyone else. I see so many people trying to help others yet they forget about their own well-being. What does the flight attendant tell you to do with your oxygen mask if the plane is going down? Put yours on first THEN help those next to you! The world is no good if you are no good so start focusing on yourself and how you can be stronger and get your mind focused on moving forward!

Find three quotes you like!
If you are focused too much on the past, open another tab in your browser and type “inspirational quotes” into Google. Find them, print them out and keep them around your house, car, office or bathroom to constantly remind yourself you have what it takes. Keep your eyes forward and focus on the future.

Three of my favorite quotes to keep me going:
“Whether you think you can, or you can’t, you are right.” – Henry Ford
“Do you want to know who you are? Don’t Ask. Act!” – Thomas Jefferson
” Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” – Mahatma Gandhi

Write down three good things that have come out of your past! 
What good things have come from your past? Take three minutes right now and write these down. Tell yourself “parts of my past are good and now it is time to move on to bigger and better things because the world needs more of what I have to offer.” Don’t settle!

Make sure to take time today and if there is something in your past that has been holding you back, good or bad, start with setting up a vision board, finding three quotes you like and write down three good things that have come from your past that you are thankful for. This exercise might take 20 minutes of your day but will get you the boost you need as a leader to be proud of the past and focused on the future.

Thanks for the question Stephani. Let’s all keep using our voice to make a difference and as always…

Dream BIG,

* Know someone who could benefit from this article? Please share it with them on your social media or email by clicking on one button bellow! 

Why your ADD is a good thing and why it shouldn’t distract you!

By Motivation 6 Comments

Today’s article comes from Chris Villafano out in Round Rock, TX. He asked after one of my speeches I gave in Austin, “Is your ADD a blessing or disadvantage?” 

Truthfully I probably have ADD but I have never been diagnosed for it. The reason why I want to address this issue is because Chris’ question is not the first time I have been asked this. In fact, I get questions about ADD and ADHD a lot (Whether I have it, what you can do to stay focused if you have it and how can you use it to your advantage?). With these questions, they usually come with shyness or looking at having ADD/ADHD as a weakness and that is the wrong way to look at having ADD in my opinion! So it is about time we address the issue!

If I objectively look at my speaking style it is definitely, and not purposely, geared towards focusing on those with ADD. I tell a very very short story, often give relevant tangents to drive home my point, give my point and move on to the next tip, strategy or story! I take about two or three minutes on each point and move on!

If you have been to one of my workshops or keynotes you know it is not uncommon to hear 30 stories in a hour keynote and gain 15+ new strategies! I mean I teach two-hour workshops and one of the most common things I hear afterwards is “I literally thought I was here for 20 minutes” or “I have ADD, how did you keep me engaged the entire time?”

Did I plan to make my presentations geared towards those with ADD? No! Do I think those who don’t have ADD still enjoy my presentations and workshops? Absolutely! Because if you can engage, entertain and educate someone who might have a short attention span or trouble focusing, think of what you can do for those who are not diagnosed with ADD?

As a leader, here are four reasons why your ADD/ADHD is a good thing and why it shouldn’t distract you!

1) It is more common then you think = According to The American Psychiatric Association states that 5% of children have ADHD and is growing almost 1% a year. Studies in the US have estimated higher rates in community samples. It is  estimated that 60% of those will continue to have symptoms that affect their functioning as adults.

2) It makes you unique = One thing I learned working at Special Olympics is that our athletes didn’t have disabilities, we all have different abilities and if we focus on the ones that make us great then the world will be better, our life will be better and those around us will be better. Be proud of what makes you unique, focus on minimizing what distracts you so you can be more productive and keep adding value to those you serve!

3) Major celebrities, successful people and athletes are diagnosed with having ADD = Look at this list of celebrities who have ADD! If anyone is making fun of you or trying to tell you that you don’t have it, who cares! Look at these brilliant minds who do and remind yourself you are part of a group of people who have changed the world, broken records, grew billion dollar businesses and deliver valuable content to millions! If you do have ADD you should remind yourself it is a blessing!

4) You will add more value to those you serve = Where some speakers might share three stories and three points, I might share 15 engaging stories and give 15+ strategies that empower leaders to be better speakers on stage! They are easy to remember, easy to share and easy to use giving the audience member value they can use! Remember… you are valuable!

If you are struggling with your ADD and feel like you are not being able to accomplish anything, take on too many tasks or get easily distracted which leads to you not being able to be productive then take time to accomplish something small. What one small step can you take right now, this minute, the help you accomplish the goal you have for yourself?

We all get distracted! We have social media alerts on our phone as we are typing on our computer, while sitting in a coffee shop, listening to music as someone is trying to talk with us and you are thinking about what article you want to write, what your family is doing and hearing the email chime that lets you know you just got two new emails (literally this is happening as I speak).

So what I have to do sometimes, is turn off my wifi, wake up early so I won’t get distracted from text messages or social media alters and sit at my computer and get things done. I just had to remind myself to turn off wifi, turn off my phone, get out of that coffee shop and finish it in a quiet area. I am constantly reminding myself to stay focused. Identify when you are most productive and take charge of being in charge or getting rid of those things you know distract you from making your dreams happen.

With anything in life, how you look at it, changes everything. If you think of it as a negative, it will be negative. If you see it as a positive it will be. If you don’t even realize it and live your life focusing on delivering valuable content then that is what you will become; known as someone who might have ADD but they add value to those they serve. Whenever you feel like you are down or your ADD is distracting you and in the way, review the list of celebrities who have ADD and what contributions they have made! You too can fit that group one day!

Remember to keep using your voice to make a difference and as always…

Dream BIG,

Question: Know someone who could benefit from this article? Share it with your friends and family on Facebook. LinkedIn or Twitter by clicking on one social media button below. With your help, we can help more people! 

9 Speaking Tips for Non-Native Speakers

By Communication 6 Comments

According to the U. S. Census Bureau, there are more than 35 million adults in the United States who are non-native English speakers.

Many of these people are looking for work, to advance in their career and speak up and out for the causes they believe in. Non-native speakers can experience difficulties in developing and delivering their message when speaking to a group of people on stage, in a board room or during one-on-one conversations.

Non-native speakers might hear things like “I don’t understand what you are saying” or “Your accent is too thick” or “It’s hard to focus on what you are saying.” If you are are a non-native speaker who would like to improve the way your message gets translated into minds of those listening to you or you know someone struggling with their accent, here are nine tips you can use to improve the way you communicate:

Record yourself: Take the time to record what you are saying during your next speech or presentation. Then listen to it. Get a friend to listen to it. Identify the words that are hard to hear, understand or process. When you record yourself, you will pick up on things that you might not have noticed before.

Get a partner: Get someone to help you with your 2nd language who you trust. Someone who can call you out when you say a word wrong, aren’t pronouncing things correctly or using the right grammar. A partner can help you advance your communication skills by helping you see and hear the things you are not picking up on.

Be proud of your accent: Many of my non-native speaking clients say, “I need to get rid of my accent.” I think this is the wrong way to look at your voice. You should be proud of your voice and where you come from. You should’t get rid of your accent, you should embrace your accent. Keep the accent but make it so others can understand what you are saying. When you are proud, others will listen. This also will help you build confidence in what you are saying and remind yourself you speak two languages! Not many people can say that!

Be open to feedback: Listen. Listen. Listen. Ask around for feedback. When you are giving a speech or presenting a proposal at work, ask three or four of your colleagues to take notes and give you feedback on specifics you can improve on. Listen to what they say. Be open to asking for feedback anytime you are speaking to get better at communicating.

Find synonyms for words you can’t pronounce: There are words in English I have trouble pronouncing (I am no longer allowed to say prerequisite and familiarity in public). I avoid them at all cost. There are words some people cannot pronounce. You are not alone, just don’t use them! Find words that are similar to them and use those instead.

Speak slower: This is for all speakers and communicators. Slow down! Most of the time you are speaking too fast and it is distracting. It slurs your words together and on top of your accent it can be hard to digest what you are saying. Remember to pause, slow down and enunciate your words.

Practice one letter at a time: Find the letter that is the hardest for you to say (V or R or W or P). Practice just saying those letters over and over again. Pick words that have those letters in them and get your mouth comfortable with finding out how to properly say them without being distracting. Practice one letter at a time.

Find speakers you like: Find speakers who are speaking like you want to be speaking. Find speakers who might even have the same accent as you but are doing it the way you want to. What are they doing to get their message across or communicate in a way that people are focused more on their words than how they say them? Find speakers you like to feel more confident in knowing that if they can do it, so can you!

Practice everyday: Practice. Practice. Practice. Get good at practicing. Remember, how you practice is how you play so use these nine steps everyday to get better at speaking in your non-native language.

Please don’t think you ever need to get rid of your accent, you only need to focus on making sure you are speaking in a way that adds value, people understand what you are saying and enjoying your message. Keep using your voice to make a difference and as always…

Dream BIG,

P.S. Know someone, or a group, who could benefit from this article? Share it with them on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn by clicking on one of the buttons below!  

How Every Airline Should Handle a “Mistake”

By Motivation 7 Comments

With more than 100 flights a year I get my fair share of “airport stories” and this one has a twist!

Chelsea and I were finishing up my book tour and headed on vacation with my parents. I am flying to Miami, she is flying to Panama City Beach so I wait by her gate because my plane is scheduled to leave an hour later than hers.

After 30-minutes of sitting, we get the announcement, “Ladies and gentleman, I have just been informed that Flight XYZ will be delayed due to a part that needs to be replaced on your airplane.”

Now usually this is where most airlines end their announcement with a “sorry for the inconvenience, please come up to the counter, wait in line and we will book anyone on another flight looking to still make their connections!”

Delta decided to handle it differently and this is how they made 200+ potential upset flyers… happy, satisfied and went above and beyond what they needed to do.

1st – They Effectively Communicated
From emails, to phone calls to messages and updates every 10 minutes, the Delta crew communicated what was happening and let their flyers know what they knew. As soon as we knew the flight was delayed I received an email saying how they could fix it. I received a phone call letting me know ways they could make it better and the crew said they were there to help with whoever needed assistance.

Delta Making a Mistake with an Avery2nd – They Passed Out Food, Snacks and Drinks
Instead of saying sorry they showed they were sorry. They brought out first-class snacks for all passengers, drinks and even went one step further and ordered 15 pizzas for all passengers so they didn’t have to order food while they waited!

3rd – They Provided Options
They gave people options to communicate. You can download the Delta app, you can call one of 500 customer service representatives to reschedule your flight or you can talk to a gate agent at the counter. They gave options to communicate and respond in the way that was easiest for their customers.

It was great to see a global company taking initiative to communicate effectively with their customers, if all companies did this when a “mistake” occurred, their customers would be happier and their retention would be greater. Plus, not to mention, we live in a digital world and as I was looking around I noticed people posting their snacks on Instagram and Twitter.

So they made the conversation online go from frustrated to thankful and let their customers communicate how well they handle mistakes that arise. They might have spent $200 on this, but think of the customers they kept, the PR they received and the example they set! If all airlines, and companies, handled situations like this (communicated effectively and provide options) we as customers would be a lot happier! Thanks Delta for setting an example. As always…

Dream BIG,

Question: What is your favorite airline story? 

The Best Part of Being American

By Motivation 4 Comments

After spending last week in DC and on this Memorial Day I have been able to reflect on those who have given their lives, and those who dedicate their lives, to protecting our freedoms.

These men and woman are strangers whom I have never met, yet they have given their life to protect the values we all share. They are strangers yet because they are fellow Americans, they are also my neighbors, my family and my friends. They believe in the right to be free and for others who will live after them to have that same right.

Everyday I am thankful for being an American and being able to have the right to use my voice to make a difference and use my voice to say what I believe.

In my opinion, the best part of being an American is the First Amendment of our Bill of Rights!

Amendment I
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

There is no stronger statement in government history than this to me. It gives power to the people, it provides freedom to our citizens and allows everyone to have the right to live their life.

This might be the First Amendment but there can be certain social consequences to being a particular religion or speaking up about what you believe or petition the government! There are still things we need to do as Americans to advance this amendment.

I know it can be overwhelming to use your voice at times when others around you don’t agree with what you are saying but we must because, the results of using your voice can be scary, however silencing that voice can produce even scarier results.

Americans have died for us to have that right and we must honor them by using it. We must protect our First Amendment by using our voice and speaking up for things we believe in. That power in my opinion, is the best part of being an American. No matter your economical status, marital status, gender or race, we all have the power and right to use our voice!

This Memorial Day, reflect on the things you want to say, the things you want to accomplish and be reminded that strangers who believe in the power of freedom gave their life so you can have the freedom to say what you what, follow who you want and petition the very same government that set those laws into place over 200 years ago!

Thank you to every man and woman who has served our country. Thank you to every family who has given a child to the cause of protecting our freedom and thank you to everyone who uses their voice to make a difference in our country. I am forever grateful for your courage, sacrifice and American spirit. As always…

Dream BIG,

Question: Do you agree with the First Amendment being the best part of being American? If not, what is your favorite Amendment to the US Constitution? (If you like this article and are thankful for those who have served our country, share this with your friends and family by clicking on one of the share buttons below!)

How to stop talking and start communicating!

By Motivation No Comments

I had the opportunity to have lunch with one of my new favorite authors,

He is a military man with a good heart and has dedicated his life to study the art of communication. His new book gives, “…counterintuitive strategies for learning how to interact productively and meaningfully in today’s digital world.” Something we all can improve on!

Stop talking start communicatingHis book is filled with dozens of tips and insightful strategies and here are three ways you should stop talking and start communicating.

Lose your friends!
Tumlin explains that, “Important relationship are being trumped by people you barely know!” Just because you hit the “like” button does not mean you are connecting. Humans are social animals. We need to feel connected. Tumlin writes, “Today it is possible to accumulate scores of friends and still feel lonely, be connected to hundreds of people and feel like no one is listening and spend hours at work, sending and responding to countless messages, but still feeling unproductive.” It is because we are focused on technology and not people. “The problem with a more tech-centered view of communication is that it encourages us to expect too much from our device and too little from each other.” You should start communicating more on a human bases so you can build real relationships, feel connected to others and feel like your voice is actually being heard! If you are feeling disconnected from others, lose your “friends” online who don’t add meaning or value to your life and focus on those around you. Tumlin says, “The main reason to prioritize isn’t to squeeze people out of your life; it’s to make sure that the most important people stay in it.”

Stop talking
In my opinion, communication is the foundation to all of your success. To many people are talking rather than effectively communicating! Talking is you getting your voice heard. Communicating is having all parties who are part of the conversation understand what it is you are saying! The better you are at being able to effectively  communicate what it is you want, the quicker you will be at receiving and reaching the goals you have for yourself, your company and your family. Think about a relationship you have built over time, that you lost one time due to one or two sentences? If you stop talking and start planning on ways to react to certain situations, you might be able to build better relationships and create lasting ones. Stop talking and don’t focus on what you want to say, focus on what you want to accomplish. The better communicator you are the better relationship you build and the better life you have.

Ryan Avery quote with George Bernard ShawIgnore your (telltale) heart
When communication problems arise, many of us just want to start talking instead of preparing what we want to say. According to ProFound, last year, productivity losses resulting from miscommunication costs companies $37 billion, or about $26,000 per employee per year, in the US and UK alone. We need to learn strategies and techniques that can help us improve our listening skills, ask the right questions to produce the right answers and minimize miscommunication across multiple communication channels like email, texting, face-to-face and social media. When we are able to effectively communicate to others, we improve productivity, we create clarity and we save money. All strategic communications (including the unexpected ones) benefit from preparation. Take time to think about what you want to say and how you want to say it to minimize conflict, confusion and miscommunication between those you are speaking to. 

If you are looking or a book to read, pick up a copy of Stop Talking, Start Communicating and learn how to improve all areas of your life. Connect with Geoffrey and as always…

Dream BIG,

Ryan Avery and CSU

7 Things You Need To Break The World Record for The Largest Book Signing In History

By Motivation, World Records No Comments

We are working to get ready for the World Record on April 16th.  Want to know what it takes to break the World Record for the Largest Book Signing in History? Here you go:

Ryan Avery book signing1) 100 Sharpies
Thanks to my uncle and his connection with Sharpie, they have supported this event and provided us with 100 red (branding matters) sharpies to sign more than 5,000 books in 11 hours.

2)  5,000 copies of your book on hand waiting to be sold and signed
Thanks to the CSU bookstore and McGraw-Hill Publishing, we have 5,000 books on hand waiting to be signed. I don’t think I have ever seen 5,000 of the same book before, it is a total of three pallets and more boxes than I can count!

3) Close to 100 volunteers
From Toastmasters International, Alpha Kappa Psi, NRHH and CSU support all the way from friends and family, several CSU clubs and the Fort Collins Lions Club, this event takes almost 100 volunteers to put together! Not to mention all the teams, departments and organizations who are helping spread the event through their channels!

4) A social media team
I call them “Team 34” because it sounds amazing and well… there are 34 of them. They have come together to help spread the message across social media, to their fans and following and have posted during the pre-event, have posts ready for the day of the event and will shout out once it is over! They are amazing and give legs to the social aspect of this World Record!

5) Marathon energy  
It will take more than 10 hours to sign continuously to break the record and create history with you. I will be smiling, standing, eating very little, talking, taking only 20 minutes worth of breaks and doing exercises so I don’t break my wrist! It will be a lot of energy, but worth it when we create history together!

6) Training schedule 
I have been practicing like I would for a marathon. I have been practicing smiling for hours at a time (even when I do my ab routine. Try smiling the entire time you do P90X abs!), signing my name thousands of times a day, standing for long periods of time and I even taught myself how to sign with my left hand. There is a major training schedule involved with this record because to get to 5,000 signatures without permanent damage, you need to be smart about it!

7) Most importantly…. 5,000 people!
We can’t do this record without you! If you have ever wanted to be part of history, we need 5,000 people to show up onsite or online on April 16th and be part of history! You can pre-register now and we will send you an email with the order link to purchase your book on that day! Help us create history and get your names in the record books! If you need three reasons why you should join us, click here! Or, if you are ready to be part of history, Register below:

This is what you need to break the World Record for the Largest Book Signing in History! Join us on Wednesday April 16th and as always…

Dream BIG,

P.S. Please share this article on your social media accounts or via email with your friends and family. Together we can do this! 

Special Olympics Oregon with Ryan Avery

When is the right time to leave a company to start your own?

By Leadership, Motivation No Comments

One year ago today, I stopped working for an organization that inspired me. Everyday I went to work, I was excited by the mission, the people I worked with and my roles and responsibilities to help improve the lives of those we served. I had potential in the organization and the proposition of leaving to start working for myself was a difficult one to make.

Allison E with Special Olympics OregonI decided to leave my job at Special Olympics Oregon to become a full time speaker for three reasons:

1) I asked myself, “One day, when my kids ask me if I went for my dreams, I want to make sure I can tell them ‘yes’ with all honesty.”

2) Worst case scenario, I can always get a job again

3) As long as Chelsea was on board, I would be all in!

The decision was rational, frightening and exciting all balled into one. I felt like a peppy puppy having to choose between a run on the beach or a playdate in the park! How do you leave a job you love to create a company you know nothing about?

Here are six questions to consider if you are looking to start your own company:

AveryToday's First Office

This was AveryToday, Inc. “Headquarters” when we started last year. Dream BIG right?

Are you ok with taking a step backwards financially?

We planned for me leaving but we had to save more, spend less on things that are considered “fun” and use our finances to start a business. We even moved from Oregon to Texas to move in with my parents to save money on rent, you get better tax benefits when you own a Texas corporation and my mom and dad were willing to help support us emotionally throughout our transition.

I am not saying you will go backwards when you start your own company, but are you willing to if needed and invest your money into growing you company rather than living the lifestyle you already have? Are you willing to go three steps back to go five steps forward in the future?

Are you ok with working harder than you ever have?

When you start a company, there is a lot to learn. At the beginning stages of our company there were no weekends. We woke up early, went to bed late and replayed that schedule over and over again until I lost what day of the week it was.

Today, is a little different. I have a schedule, I take personal time and I still work harder than ever but those beginning months can be brutal if you are not prepared for your business to survive. It takes every ounce of energy you have.

Are you ok with things rapidly changing?
In this past year I have quit my full time job, moved from Portland to Houston, wrote a book, put on a 50-city North American Tour, planned a book tour and a world record, delivered keynotes, workshops and private coaching to leaders all over the world, I moved back to Portland, and now I am scuba certified. When you start your own company, things seem to always be changing. You do things you have never done. Are you ok with this?

Ryan Avery leaving Special Olympics OregonAre you ready to be your own boss?
This is the biggest thing you need to think about… Are you self-dicipled enough to make your company survive? Stop here. Think about this and come back to read the rest. Seriosuly think about what you are going to do to be self-dicplined because no longer is anyone telling you what to do, when to do it and how it should get done. It is 100% up to you. This is both freeing and very difficult to manage.

Do you already have a base and slight proof you can make it on your own if you try?
We didn’t start our  business by chance. It was our choice to leave but we planned, outlined how much money we were making, how much we could be making if we took it full-time. Planning doesn’t always work. Those first six months were brutal. We didn’t meet any of our financial goals for the first six months but we kept pushing ourselves and used the proof we had to remind each other  we could keep doing what we were doing. If you can do it once, you can repeat it twice!

Is your family okay with taking the leap with you?

Your family depends on you, they have to be okay with the above as well because this is not a decision you make alone, it is one y’all (yes I am from Texas) must make. Have a conversation with your family, tell them what you want to do. Ask them what they need and are how they are willing to help or support you on your dreams.

I went from employee to entrepreneur in 24-hours and today I own two successful business. I have a long way to go, more to learn and a whole lot more people to serve but I am ultimately glad I took the leap. You only live once, right? Take the above decisions to consider owning your own business. As scary as it was, looking back on this year, I made the right choice. You are not too young or too old to start, but what you must do is make a decision, start planning for the life you want to live and go for it!

As always…
Dream BIG,

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