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Special Guest Expert - AJ Rivera

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Announcer:
Welcome to The MIND BODY BUSINESS Show. The 3 keys to your success is just moments away. Here's your host, Brian Kelly.

Brian Kelly:
Hello everyone and welcome, welcome, welcome to The MIND BODY BUSINESS Show. We have an amazing show for you tonight. You are going to be amazed by this gentleman that I have coming on. His name is AJ Rivera. We're going to bring him on in just a few moments. Before we do that, real quickly, just set the table: What is The MIND BODY BUSINESS Show all about? Well, first and foremost, it's a show by entrepreneurs, made by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs and small business owners. The mind - the mind, is, in my opinion, the cornerstone, the foundation by which all of our lives are -- the results we have in our lives are completely a result of our mind. What do I mean by that? What are our daily thoughts? This goes very deep and I'm not going to go through the entire process right here, right now, but just understand that the mind is incredibly important and any time you hear any mentor, expert, successful person bring up the topic of mind, well, then listen intently. And another thing is you'll find that every single person that has been successful knows the importance of the mind, and that's the part of MIND BODY BUSINESS, is that I realized after years and years - now 54 years on this earth of reading, of working with mentors like AJ Rivera, - what I've learned is that these patterns kept coming back and surfacing. Everyone who's successful seemed to do the same basic things and one was they mastered their mindset. And you can do that through various ways. But one of the most powerful is through a science called Neuro Linguistic Programming (or NLP for short) because it will help you to reprogram your subconscious brain to get you the results you want and deserve much faster in life. And then there's body. Of course, body. You want to be at top physical shape. Physical shape will also help you to be at your top mental game. So, we're talking about exercise, nutrition, the things that we all know we should be doing better at, don't we? Yes. Me included. There are times, I tell you. It's got to be improved. And the thing is, the mind and body are a team. The mind and body more importantly - your team. Now, think about this: what if you have a team, say there's five players on a team, and one of those players is not making the grade? They did not prepare. They did not put in the work, the time and effort necessary to be at the top of their game, to be operating at the peak level of performance. Well, what if that was either your mind or your body, which are your team? If either of those are not operating at a peak level of performance then you as a whole are suffering as well. And then comes the final component. All three of these equally as important as business. That's when it comes to sales, marketing, building teams, systematizing, getting/scaling your business. If you haven't mastered each and every one of these areas in business, then again, I say you're not operating at a peak level of performance. Now I'm not here to judge you. We're all - every one of us, every single one of us, and there's nobody that is left out of this statement. - every single one of us has room for improvement, don't we? In every one of these areas, we can always improve and that's the fun and beauty about being an entrepreneur. You never do reach that end game. If you did, I think life would be extremely boring. So, another incredible tip that a mentor of mine gave me many years ago was, he said, "Brian, if entrepreneurs and business," he was looking right in my eyes, "if they only knew, if they only did this one thing, if they just did this one thing and did it on a consistent basis, they would all be rich." Those were his words,"they would all be rich." And I said, "wow." I'm thinking, "Well, tell me." And so he proceeded to step back. He was in this large corner office, multimillionaire large corner office, and he stepped back to the wall and on that wall was this large cabinet, floor to ceiling, two doors (motioning with hands). As he stepped up to it, he grabbed both handles at the same time and he started to pull it back and he looked back at me, and as he opened the doors, what I saw was shelf after shelf after shelf of what you see behind me - books (pointing to books behind him). And he said, "Brian, if people only knew of all he did was read, they'd become rich." And his books were on personal development, business. Anything that would help him get farther, faster in his life, both personal and in business. An interesting thing occurred in my mind at that moment. I discounted it. I said, "It can't be that easy. I don't have any skin in the game. I mean, a book is what," - I don't even know what that cost at that point. I'm like, I don't, I didn't read back then - "like, come on, I can go to the library in Reno for free. So, you're telling me I could, for free, learn how to become rich like you?" And in my mind I thought, "No way." So, I ignored that advice for years. Luckily, thankfully, another mentor came into my life by the name of Mel Cutler and I got the extreme privilege of working with this gentleman for several years, and I got to see, not only, you know he said the same exact thing. He said, "If you read, you will become successful." That's it. And not only did he tell me, but he showed me because I worked with him on a weekly basis and I got to see. He did it by example, he was always listening to audible on a headset, and I thought, "That's interesting. Audible, I'm going to give that a shot because I'm not much of a reader." So, I did and I loved it. And so I began voraciously reading on Audible, day after day. Every time I'm in the car became my 'rolling millionaire library' and I just would read and read and read. And I was able to retain this information great. And the cool thing about Audible, one of the things you can do as you're driving along, on the phone there's a nice big button there (pointing in front of him as if to be clicking a button on a phone) where you can tap it and it will actually store a bookmark at the very moment that you tap it. So, if I see or if I hear something that's really interesting, thought provoking and something I want to share later or just go back and review, I just tap that button. And a cool thing, I decided, hey, well by doing that, why don't I share these snippets of incredible information with my audience, that being you, right here live on the show. So, with that we're going to swing on into a little segment that I call Bookmarks.

Narrator:
(Showing information on screen) Bookmarks. Born to read. Bookmarks. Ready, steady, read! Bookmarks. Brought to you by ReachYourPeakLibrary.com.

Brian Kelly:
Yes, ReachYourPeakLibrary.com, you see it right here on the side of the screen. And by the way, if you're watching live, even if you're watching the recording or listening to it on podcasts, just stay with us. You won't want to miss this special guest expert we have coming up. Stay with us. Just take notes. Definitely take notes. I will be taking notes all evening long because I know the value that's going to be brought by Mr. Rivera just a little bit later on the show. That's coming on soon I promise. So take notes. Don't go, don't leave, don't head off to another website. Just stick with us and take notes. That is another key to success that I've learned over time and I know my guest,AJ, would agree on that when without hesitation. You can't see him - I can, he's nodding and throwing thumbs up at me. So, definitely. So, what is Reach Your Peak Library? Real quick: It's just a compilation of books that I have personally vetted. I've read more than you see on the screen. The ones that you see on the screen are those that had an impact on me - more than just a minor one. And so, the beauty of this is, I put this together for you so that if you haven't been reading, if you're not reading on a consistent basis and you want to get started, here is a great place to start. On the other hand, if you already are reading, go through this list and see what books are there that maybe you haven't hit yet. I'm always discovering new books. In fact, AJ, who's coming on, told me of two phenomenal books that are actually in this list. Because I learned from other people - mentors of mine and people who are extremely successful. So, what we're going to do is, we're going to pick one book from this list. And you see it on the screen right there. It's one of my recent reads. It's called 'Living With The Monks' by Jesse Itzler. It's a great read. I highly recommend you pick it up. He also has another one called 'Living With A Seal'. That was the first one I read - it was another amazing book. I loved it. But what I want to do is play this snippet. It's about a minute in length and definitely listen intently, take notes on what he says. He's going to be talking about his wife, Sarah, who many of you may recognize. She's been on Shark Tank. She's the founder of Spanx. So here is Jesse Itzler talking about his wife, Sarah. Here we go.

Jesse Itzler:
Still, having a big idea and turning it into a big reality isn't nearly the same thing. Here's where having experience can be a dream crusher. People have great ideas all the time, but they have just enough experience and they've seen just enough failure to start to believe their chances of failing are too high. Sarah didn't know enough to think her chances of succeeding were a low. Besides, failure is never a big thing for her. At the dinner table growing up, Sarah's father had a weekly ritual where he would ask her what she failed at that week. Maybe she had tried out for the school play, cheerleading, or a sports team.Wwhen she'd tell her dad how poorly it went, he would give her a high five. Whether she had succeeded or fail wasn't important. All that mattered was that she tried. That ritual changed Sarah's definition of failure and failure became tied to not trying rather than the outcome.

Brian Kelly:
And we'll stop it there. Amazing, amazing words of advice from Sarah's dad. Unbelievable. What a great lesson to teach her at an early age. To tell her that you want to fail, you want to fail often, because if you're not failing, you're not trying. Isn't that true? I mean we all fail. And we fail more often than we succeed to get to that level where we are now becoming successful. And guess what! You think it gets easier as you get more and more successful? Well, certain things can, but most often no - because you're going to be stretching yourself and scaling and reaching for that next level, always looking for how to improve your business. And to do that, you need to step out of your comfort zone and continue to nonstop consistently fail. Failure is a good thing. And I bring that up because I learned a lot of this from our guest that's coming up now. This is an example. This is a product of the product. AJ Rivera has been there, done that, bought the T-shirt and continues to go through this and fail time and time again. He's OK with stepping out there and trying new things and seeing if it works, and if it doesn't, just revise and move on. So, with that, it's time! Ladies and gentlemen, let's bring on our special guest expert.

Announcer:
(Words popping up on the screen) It's time for the guest expert spotlight! Savvy, skillful, professional, adept, trained, Big League, qualified.

Brian Kelly:
And there he is, ladies and gentlemen. The one, the only - AJ Rivera. Yes. Real quick, AJ: He is the founder of a multi-million dollar company called Fit Pro Hero. The number one paid media agency on the planet helping fit pros never worry about leads again. I love that. He's been featured on Business Insider, Entrepreneur, Barbell Shrugged, Success Magazine, CNBC and as he says, a few other places. I love that. (AJ laughs) Real quick, real quick before I bring AJ on, be sure if you're watching this live, be sure to watch the show to the very end because you - each and every one of you - get a chance to win a complimentary stay at a five star luxury resort in Mexico, compliments of PowerTexting.com. My good friend Jason Nast, who is one of the co-founders of PowerTexting.com, literally just returned from such a trip using the very thing that he helps sponsor us with and said it was amazing. So you want to stay on for that and even more importantly, you want to stay on for this man right next to me, AJ Rivera. My buddy, my friend, how are you doing? (AJ looks to his left then to his right) Yep, that way. (Brian laughs)

AJ Rivera:
That way. Well, it's one of these ways. I forget the mirror. I'm doing fantastic, Brian. Thank you for having me on. I'm really excited to be here. Hopefully I can offer some sort of value to you. If not to you, somebody else out there in the ether watching this.

Brian Kelly:
There's no doubt in my mind that extreme amounts of value are about to be bestowed upon any and all right here right now. Hey, I just gave you a very quick intro to everybody using your bio, but if you wouldn't mind, could you give us a little bit deeper, a little bit more about you - what your business is about maybe and also what are you up to these days.? What are you doing currently?

AJ Rivera:
Sure, yeah, I can give a little bit of a background. I, as you said, I run a multi-million dollar agency. I run a lot of different companies. I owned a few gyms in the Chicago-land area, sold over a million dollars and training there. I then transition into coaching, consulting and helping gym owners and business owners grow their business using things like paid media and just strategies that often get ignored and oftentimes not chasing other rabbits that come along when you're so close to catching this rabbit. So, that's a lot of what I do now. We are very, very focused on building, continuing to build around our paid agency for fit prose and we also are now selling business tools and CRM tools to help them be even more successful in their businesses. So, that's what's new in my world and that's the elevator version. I don't know how much deeper down these rabbit holes you want to go into or if there's anything specific you want to cover.

Brian Kelly:
Yeah, there's a lot and as deep down the rabbit hole as your mind takes you, seriously, (AJ laughs) because I love - again, and I said this to AJ off camera, but this show is about him. It's not about me. And so, I'm here just to stir the pot so to speak, to ask the questions that actually get the value extracted, which I don't have to ever extract value from any of my guests, they are just so full of value that it just comes out and it's like having a conversation each and every time. Oftentimes, before the show, when I talk to the next guest coming up, we'll end up doing an entire show without going live. We'll just be talking on Zoom doing some free shows set up and things and that's just the way we roll. So, yeah, AJ, man, it's an open canvas, blank canvas. You're the artist and so we'll let you paint away. So, I'll start off by asking a question, which I have a feeling I know the answer to, but I want everyone else to be able to hear it as well.

AJ Rivera:
Sure.

Brian Kelly:
Would you consider yourself to be an avid reader, and if so, what book are you reading now?

AJ Rivera:
Cool. Good question. I am an avid reader. I wasn't always a reader. I think that is the story for a lot of people who own businesses or who are entrepreneurs or just trying to grow in any way, right, success can be defined in lots of ways. I, yeah, I wasn't always a reader when I was a kid. I thought it wasn't cool to like reading and then as I became a grown up and I wanted to start succeeding all of my mentors and the people I aspire to, were all avid readers. So, I both use Audible and listen to audio books, and physically read books. I feel like you get something a little bit different from actually tangibly reading it and also taking notes and things like that. Right now what am I reading? I'm reading a couple books. The one that's probably most relevant is I'm reading 'Influence' by Robert Cialdini, which is about marketing. It's about how to influence your audiences and how to also protect yourself against manipulative marketing, if you can believe that. So, it's a pretty interesting book, And then I'm reading other science books and stuff as well. But that's that's the main one I'm focused on that I think is directly related to what we're talking about here today.

Brian Kelly:
Excellent! I noted that one. That will be next one I pick up because the last two you referred to me were also gems.

AJ Rivera:
Good.(AJ laughs lightly)

AJ Rivera:
My goodness, and they're on ReachYourPeakLibrary.com by the way. Stay here, don't go there, take notes. Fantastic! And so, Fit Pros! Fit Pro Heroes. I mean, I've worked with you AJ, your staff. You have an amazing, amazing team. I mean, from top to bottom, well oiled machine, and incredibly - what I noticed was a lot of people bring on additional staff and they will sign them coaching positions. And oftentimes, that doesn't work well. But in your case it did because I witnessed it, I experienced it - my son and I both did - that you brought on and trained these people to be amazing. And I don't want to mention their names. They might blush, but there were two of them. Two of them that were phenomenal and that I got to interact with and talked to. And also your marketing guy that does the actual strategy calls, brilliant! He's a brilliant man. You have assembled an amazing team. And it's all around - If you don't mind I help tell people what your company does?

AJ Rivera:
(AJ laughs) No, go ahead!

Brian Kelly:
It's there for helping people who have a fitness business to do many things. Not just to get leads, not just to - there are so much more that was delivered than I ever expected. Teaching you not only how to get the leads, but also how to form your business, how to how to scale your business, how to properly and what are the key elements and areas you need to concentrate on that most business people don't that are small business owners. It went really, really deep and it was very impressive. But being a fit pro's and fitness based entity, I can only imagine, but I'm going to ask: how important is physical fitness itself? So, we went from mind, now we're going into the body,right into it. How important is physical fitness to you, AJ, to your business and also to your personal life?

AJ Rivera:
Yeah. Good question! That's an interesting question because I'm not like a world champion, crossfit winner or professional power lifter, bodybuilder or anything like that. So, I often will get asked that question. How - What's your workout routine look like? And how important is that to you? It's pretty much been important to me so long as I've been a gym owner, so a decade. I have fluctuated through all different types of training. I think, when I was a kid and I really started, I was trying to get huge. As I get a little older - not a lot older, but a little older - I want to stay strong and functional and healthy. And it's a very important part. I kind of regiment my time based around it, which is why it's very challenging to get beyond shows. That and all my time. But, yeah, I still workout. Right now we're going on five days a week. Generally, it's like two to three and it's very important. I think it's one of those pillars that you need in your life to keep progressing in whatever goal you are setting out to accomplish. So, it's super, super important. And right now, I'm doing a strong, strength, powerlifting regimen written by a dude named Johnny Candido, so I'm pretty excited about that. It's new and stimulating. And, yeah, I think it doesn't have to be anything as complicated as that. It can be as simple as just moving around for a job. Swinging a kettlebell. But, yeah, it's super, super important to me. Pretty obviously.

Brian Kelly:
Yeah, I kind of figured that the answer would lend to go that way, being that that's what you represent. I've seen you in person very fit, and that's the thing, not everybody who works out gets big. It's a genetic thing as well as you really have to want to get big. You really have to want to get big. You need to supplement nutrition, protein powders and all the things that get you to that massive size. We have a parallel there, AJ. When I was young that was my goal as well. It was to get big and everybody wanted to be Arnold back then. I found that, my gosh, this takes a long time to see even a millimeter of of change in my arm. What is going on!? (AJ laughs) And so, similarly, I'm in. I mean, I don't want to call it "preservation mode," but it's continuing to be "productive mode," where I work out and I'm doing it more carefully now that I'm 54. Joints and things are not what they once were. And so, I don't need to lift a stack of weights when I'm doing a seated leg press. I'm not there to impress anybody except to impress myself that I can get through without getting injured. (Brian laughs) So, take things slower, easier, but I found recently I'm now lifting more weight than I ever have in my life just because I've taken a much different tack to it. I didn't just go after it like Arnold and it's interesting how that occurs. And it's fun. It's fun to get through it and then like you said, it's the it's the foundation, right? The endorphins. It's the biggest natural high you could ever get. And it's legal.

AJ Rivera:
Yeah.

Brian Kelly:
So why not do it? And it doesn't cost that much. You could do it for free in your home, like you're just saying, "just move!" right?

AJ Rivera:
Yeah, yeah. To add to that, the main reason I still workout - obviously when I was younger I wanted to be jack and huge - I would say the reason I've continued to do it is more for mental health than anything. That's why I would encourage other people to do it. Sure, you want to not be overweight. Sure, you maybe want to have abs, but maybe protecting your mental health, especially in a world where we're seeing everybody at their best or at their most Photoshoped or whatever, the best time of day for them, it's really, for me, important to be able to work on something that's sort of just for me , like you said boosts your endorphins, but also gives you measurable progress. So, that stuff carries over. Growly in one area of your life carries over into everything else: your business and your personal relationships and all that. They are equally important. So, yeah, that's the main reason I would recommend it to people and this that's my motivation behind it.

Brian Kelly:
I love that. And yes, it creates a momentum, if you will. Like you said, if you increase in any area, like if it's physical, then you're going to be helping yourself in all of the other areas. If it's mental, you're going to be helping yourself in all the other areas. It all feeds each other and that's the beautiful thing about all three, The Mind, Body and Business. And in all of those areas, any improvement will affect positively the other two. That's an amazing thing. When it comes to business, I know that you work extremely hard, AJ. I know your schedule is jam packed and sometimes certain things have to give way in order for the business to still thrive. It's just a fact of life. Sacrifices must be made as we go through our entrepreneurial lives. And I don't know if that ever does stop to a full degree, or a full amount, sacrifices, but sometimes there are times where for me, for instance, that work out that I make a priority in my life, you have a life event come up, you just simply can't do it. There's something that's more important - a family issue, whatever. So, those things happen. But more to the point: when you're building a business and you're going in for the long term and you're building a successful business, I know sacrifices I've made over my life. I'm curious and this brings in the human element if you will. None of us are perfect, but what kind of sacrifices would you say you've had to make along the way to become a successful entrepreneur?

AJ Rivera:
Yeah, the sacrifices I've had to make? That's a good question. You kind of told me that you were going to ask me that earlier and I still am not sure if I have a perfect answer, but I'll do my best. I think, I mean, you have to kind of sacrifice your certainty for a minute, is a really big thing. That's why people, or a lot of people don't want to start companies, right? They get rid of all of their certainty, especially if they've never done it before. And so, that's kind of a sacrifice you have to make. You obviously have to invest in your own business. I mean, that's an obvious one. It shouldn't really be worth mentioning, but I'll do it just in case. If you're not willing to invest in a business long-term, I guess, and see what it can do for you, you're going to have a hard time being successful because you're hoping, essentially, to strike oil on your first swing of the axe. So, I don't know, that is maybe what I've sacrificed. I think what I really, really actually sacrificed is kind of old beliefs, and my ego, and even old relationships that I used to have. I think the friends and the people you surround yourself with really impact what your life is going to look like. And even if it's just being reminded of where they're at potentially in their life. And this certainly isn't everybody, but a lot of the people in my life - before I had "made it" (gesturing quotations marks), whatever that means - were often stuck in a sort of a victimhood, kind of blaming the world for their failure. And even if you don't believe that, if you're hearing it all the time, it's hard to not internalize it. So, I had to really separate myself from anybody and anything really that was working against where I wanted to go in my life at the time. And I had to distance myself. And that's not just with relationships. I stopped watching any TV that put me in a bad mood. I stopped eating or drinking alcohol that made me feel sad. And so, really, you have to be willing to jump into a new life if you want a new life, right? So, that's what I always think about when it comes to sacrificing and that's what I would highly advise anybody who is considering - or stuck - like, examine the influences in your life and think about if you want to hold on to them.

Brian Kelly:
Amazing. I so hope that everyone watching live, listening afterward on a podcast, or watching the recording video is taking notes right now. Again, every time I bring on one of these guests, another amazing one right here, the goal that he just dug out of the ground and handed to you is insurmountable. All, this - I've never heard this one before. Maybe it's very common. But AJ, I love when you said, "sacrifice your certainty." Man, that hits home! And I know everybody watching it went BAM (Brian gesturing an epiphany moment with hands) because there is no such thing as certainty when it comes to running your own business. You can be more certain in certain things if you follow words of advice from people like this guy right here, AJ. Definitely. And read the books. And put in the work and the effort and research, and study, and practice, and fail over and over. And then invest in your business. Yeah, it is an obvious one, but I'm glad you mentioned that. Definitely invest. If you're not willing to invest - so many people want to start a business for free. How many ads do we see? No money, you don't have to sell. Then, it's not a business, sorry. And they are probably not telling the truth, just to be honest. And then the positive sacrifices.! I love how you went from sacrificing something that actually felt like "ugh" to something that when you do sacrifice it, it doesn't - maybe initially at the beginning, for a very short period time it feels "ugh", but you're actually taking yourself to a more positive space - and that's when he said, "sacrificing relationships , old beliefs, and old ego." That's powerful stuff, ladies and gentlemen that are watching and listening right now. These are positive sacrifices. These are sacrifices made for the good. In fact, I would venture to say I wouldn't even call them "sacrifices," right? I love how you did that AJ, that's a great reframe of how you termed it a "sacrifice" because at the very beginning it is. Because you're sacrificing your old way of life. It doesn't feel good. It's a struggle sometimes. You have beliefs, they are your beliefs, and you're trying to change your beliefs for the better. It doesn't happen that quick. (Brian snaps his finger) Most of the time your ego - oh my gosh, we all have that - and that definitely takes time. And we all still have some degree of ego. And it's always a constant iteration of working on releasing that ego more and more and more. So, yeah, this is lit, people. This is gold. Write this stuff down. Keep it in a notebook and watch every show and write a ton of notes, and keep it in one notebook. I would recommend that. It's something you can go back to time and time again. And, thank you! Thank you, AJ. That was just off the charts.

AJ Rivera:
Thank you. (AJ laughs) I'm glad it's helpful.

Brian Kelly:
(Brian laughs) Oh man, that's the thing - I noticed working with you, with your team, so, the culture of a company: It all starts at the top. And at the moment I met you, you were the top. You were the CEO, you were the guy running everything. It's been a while since we've connected. I don't know if that changed any, but you were the man at the top. You were the face of the company. You were the voice of the company. And I noticed that that permeated everyone that worked in your company. I've never even told you this before, that your culture, your mindset, it positively affected the people that worked with you and for you. And it came out in their words and in their behaviors and their emotions - everything - in how they handled life's ordeals, which some of them had life ordeals going on when I was working with them. And so, you're a very positive individual. Any time I see you - and I've seen you behind the curtain, so to speak, when the stage has been cleared at an event and we're just chatting, walking down the street going to lunch - you're always positive. So, when it comes to maintaining a positive, productive, and successful mindset like you have, what are some specific things that you do on a regular basis that help you sustain that?

AJ Rivera:
So, I'm happy to answer that one. I think on touch on you talking about my team, which was really nice, I appreciate that. I don't deserve the credit for, (AJ laughs) for their amazing work ethic and the amount of productivity and passion and positivity that they have. Maybe the only thing I did correctly is say, "yes, it would be, of course, wonderful to have you here," but it is not-- often many of those people I didn't even hire. So, it is not a me thing. It is that they are amazing people and I happen to be working with them, which is really good. But I certainly wouldn't want tohe credit of making a positive culture. I know I contribute - I'm not being self-degrading - I know I contribute to it, but it is because that they are all such amazing people who really care about what they're doing and have a huge amount of integrity and their work ethic is insane. So, it's very little. Certainly, I contribute and I am part of it, but I am not the reason that they are amazing people there. Amazing people have their own reason for being amazing. Their amazingness is independent of me. (AJ laughs) I'm just fortunate enough to have them in my organization.

Brian Kelly:
Very awesome. Yeah. I've seen a lot of organizations over my life both in corporate world and outside. And you definitely do have an influence on them. You may not -- I don't mean to me make it sound like you created them and who they are. Definitely, they have to come to the table with some great qualities, there's no doubt. You certainly do have an influence because what you find, or what I find, is people will actually start talking the same way that the leader talks, using the same words, even to the point of using similar inflections on their voice. It's pretty amazing how that happens. And all that's good. Especially in this case. And so, yeah. And this is the way AJ is. He's always deflecting the praise off of himself and putting it back onto his team. Another great quality of a great leader. And he'll probably say, "no, that's not me, that's them doing it." But that's a great quality of a great leader. He's very humble, very humble and an amazing guy. So, I hope you're taking notes and listening and learning about that as well. And it's something that to be said of your level of success AJ. You wouldn't be where you are with multi-million dollar agency with multiple gyms with all the success you're currently bringing to the table unless you did something right and did a lot of things right. And I know it didn't happen overnight. I know there were mistakes made. I mean, I get it. It takes a lot of time and effort and it takes consistent, continual effort to continually change to be creative - what you do! You do all of those things. And so, there's a certain limit that a lot of people will go to say, "well, I'm going to succeed at all costs," or "I'm going to succeed up to a point where it will cost me this, or sacrifice that." For you, personally, how far would you say you would be willing to go to go to that next level? Because you've reached success. So, I don't want to say how far you are willing to go to succeed, but how far are you willing to go to take it to the next level so you can serve more people and then, thereby, make a bigger movement and help more people become fit and healthy as a result?

AJ Rivera:
So, I think -- that's an interesting question. I think having audacity and really wanting to go after it is a really good quality. I think your resilience, certainly needs to be high if you're going to continue to aspire to more and having that growth sort of mindset and that vibe about you, it's going to lead to you to continue growing. I don't know if there's a threshold you need to have to succeed. I think one of the things you do have to do - which is going to sound a little whatever or woowoo-ish - is you need to really believe in yourself. I know that sounds like such stupid, dumb, basic advice, but so many people believe in themselves for a moment and then they see all the challenges of starting a company, which there are. There are going to be challenges. We all have this uninformed optimism before we start a business. And then when we were in it, we have a little bit of informed pessimism because we're like,"oh no, we have to do work and this is going to happen and this is going to happen." And getting through that and being able to internalize that you're gonna make this happen, this or something better, and just kind of almost accepting, I think puts you in a position where you start behaving as such and leads to your success. At a minimum, it's going to come across in how you communicate with people and potential co-workers and potential clients of yours. So, I don't know, I think internalizing that it's almost already happened - I know that's very woowoo advice, - but putting it out there a little bit and caring yourself. Not just wishing for it, but also internalizing it and caring yourself has worked for me and worked for people smarter than me. So, that's what I would share.

Brian Kelly:
That's perfect, right down the middle of mind and mindset. It's about believing in yourself, it is an artifact of confidence and I think you even said that word. And it also brings with it, for you, a level of certainty to go with it. It increases that level of certainty, say, "hey, I did it." And one of the things that I think is also very important, especially - well, not even just when you're first starting out, but throughout your entire life of your business - is to bring on someone to help you: a coach, a mentor. And yes, invest in that. Pay money for that. Because the amount of money you spend on that will reap rewards far beyond what you pay. IT will pay you manyfold. You'll be told and get get the feedback you need and deserve to up at another level. I was so fortunate to work with my mentor for those years I was talking about. The amount of feedback I got, from not only the mentor himself, but his team that he trained. There is no price tag I could put to that. None. And it did nothing but changed my life much faster. I got much higher, much quicker as a result. And you just, you have to, like AJ already said, is sacrifice your ego. You gotta get that ego out of the way so you can take this advice so you can take these feedback. Sometimes it doesn't feel good when you get the feedback. They're basically telling you, "you're wrong at something." So, get used to it. I could not wait - I got used to it. I could not wait to be told I was wrong. I felt empty if I didn't get feedback after speaking on stage. It's very, very paramount and I know being a coach himself, AJ knows exactly how to get the best out of himself and his people. And so, here's a guy right here. You'll want to connect with him. We will give you a way to connect with him later and if you're in the fitness industry, especially, more specifically, definitely reach out to AJ and his team and he'll send you down the right path so you can get your business excelling at a higher level than it is right now. So, man. Notes, notes notes. So, it means one thing to become successful, it means a different thing to so many people. What is success? I don't know. I mean, to one person it may be one, to another another, but we all get that there are certain levels. We set goals, "I want to make certain amount of money by this point, and this year, I want to have impacted so many people and serve so many people by this time, this month, day and year." And you've been at this for some time, AJ. This isn't just that you started this three months ago. You've been doing this for some time and that takes a degree of -- a larger degree of stick-to-it-ness, a thicker skin or resiliency, like you said. (AJ nodding) So, and maybe you already answered the question, but maybe you can enhance on that, is what is the best way that you see there is to achieve long-term success? Not just short-term, but long-term, sustained success?

AJ Rivera:
Yeah, that's an interesting question as well. That's a good question: How do you get long-term success? I think you have to think long-term - is probably the first thing, right? (Brian nods in agreement) Also, oftentimes, people compare themselves to other people all the time. And I get it, you don't have anybody else to measure if you're doing good or bad, right? But staying focused on just moving the needle a little bit every day is likely going to serve you a lot more. It's just like with fitness or anything else, right? You don't -- if you're 100 pounds overweight and go to the gym, don't compare yourself to the bodybuilder, right? Just compare yourself to your yesterday, right? And try to get a little bit better. I think with business sometimes we see people who are quote, "more successful," whatever that means, right? Maybe they make more money than you and so you think you need to just do what they're doing and you need to catch up to them because: because, right? Maybe it will make you feel fulfilled. But we want to think what is it all for, right? Because we often get into entrepreneurship because we want a certain amount of control over what our lifestyle looks like and how much money we have. It's to some degree, we abandoned short-term certainty for maybe long-term certainty and the ability to make more money and control it. But then, what is it all even for? Like what - what are you doing it for? Are you doing it so that you can travel? I have a client who - their main outcome is just that they want to be able to travel. So, their goal is a lot different than somebody who was like, "I want to start the greatest personal training chain of all time and I want to license this out of 100 locations." I think it has to have a real meaning because once you reach a level of no longer needing to be fulfilled by let's say money - because you can buy whatever you want, - you're going to need something else to stimulate you and fulfill you. I would highly encourage all people - all entrepreneurs and all people, - to find it in something besides their job. And I know we want to all work on our passions and that's cool, but you should also have things in your personal life that are awesome. Because you can't find your entire fulfillment in life in your business. Because then, if you're having a bad day or a sad day -- like I've gone through bounds of depression - And if I would have been connected to my business then my business would have tanked, right? And I've seen this happen to friends of mine who implode their own business because literally they're depressed. Million dollar businesses destroyed because of this. So, making sure you're fulfilled in your personal life as well as your business is running the way it's supposed to; and being clear on what the long term outcome for your life is; not comparing yourself - those are all things that are going to really serve you if you want long-term success in my experience. Maybe my opinion will be changed five to ten years. But as it is now, that's what I've learned and has served me.

Brian Kelly:
And as we grow, our own opinions do change. I've noticed that, not just in myself, but in others as well. As you grow and you learn and you take the next step, then a different set of challenges come in front of you that you need to address and react to. And that's a good point, AJ. Oftentimes, I hear the word 'balance'- More balance in your life. I love what I do. And oftentimes, that could be a vicious thing because I want to continue to go back to it. And I thought, "wait, I've got to shut down. I've got to go see my wife and have dinner with her and spend time with her." It's not like I need to be reminded of it, but there are times where I'm going so hard and so fast and loving every second that time will elude me. And so, now I've got schedules and alarms and things going off to remind me to say -- because I've been on this path. The same thing, where you were saying, how depressed people lost multi-million dollar companies, I almost lost my marriage as a result of my idiot-ness. I don't know. (AJ nods in agreement) And it was all on me. A hundred percent on me. It got ridiculously stupid on my part and that's just something I went through. Thank the Lord that my wife stuck it through, that she told me and we've come through it and I love her more than I've ever loved her my life. That was many years ago. And we're going strong and I can't be more fortunate. So, I really, that really resonated with me, AJ. So, thank you for that because a lot of people will discount the fact that there is a personal aspect to their life. When it comes to success, there's business and there's personal in my humble opinion. I think that you need both. So, that was phenomenal. I'm going to throw a little teaser at you and if it takes a second or two to come up with an answer, that's cool. Dead air time can actually be very positive for a reason.

AJ Rivera:
I'm so curious.

Brian Kelly:
And it may come to you immediately. If you were to think of just a single word, now that you are where you are, the success you've achieved, the triumphs, the failures, the everything that goes with it - in one word, how would you characterize yourself, your life, as an entrepreneur?

AJ Rivera:
Probably just - I don't know, the word 'evolve' comes to mind. I like that word. I like the idea of just getting one percent better every day. So 'evolve' is likely the word I would choose. 'Growth' also came to mind, but that kind of was covered by it. Just focusing on You getting better and in all areas, right? And in all situations, right? You may have to improve your personal life. You may have to improve your professional life. There are certain aspects within your own business that may need to continue to grow and evolve. And You also have to evolve as the market changes. Live your life now, right? (AJ laughs) Everything is going so fast that if you're not adaptable and ready to do evolve and adapt the new coming changes, you're going to be left behind by so many entire industries. Not just companies, industries - it's happening to them now. So, that's probably the one word that comes to mind right now. If you asked me a week from now, it may not be the same, but as it is right now that's been pretty important to me.

Brian Kelly:
Yes, that's a great one, 'evolve'. (AJ laughs) That's all encompassing and you started by saying "helping others." I don't know if you caught that. You started with outside of yourself and that's one key component, another pattern I've seen develop, for those who are at a level of success that's higher than just a minor level - is always about others first. When it comes to being successful, the mindset always seems to go outside of themselves, like you. And you're always looking to help others. And I notice that that's a key trait of successful entrepreneurs that they serve others. That's their goal. That's what drives them, that's what gets them to wake up in the morning. You started by opening up gyms in the fitness arena, right? And that was, I would just assume, that was there to help people become healthier. (AJ nods) That you wanted to see people and help them to become healthier and whatever their goals were. If they wanted to lose weight, if they just wanted to feel better, if they wanted to get big and massive. But the end result was they were going to feel better and you serve them. That's what I love about you, AJ, and others like you that I've interviewed, that you're always about serving others first before you think about anything for yourself. I mean, perfect example is when you were saying that, "it's not -- I'm not the reason my team is amazing, they're amazing because they came in that way." That's another trait of successful leadership and successful entrepreneurship. So, I just want to make that point because I hear it over and over and over. It's phenomenal. Okay, let's have some fun. We're having a lot of fun already. Let's have some more fun.! If you were actually conducting this interview yourself, what question might you come up with that you think would be interesting that you would ask of yourself. So if it were coming from me, what question would you want to have asked that you think would be beneficial?

AJ Rivera:
Yeah, I like asking people what their biggest mistakes have been. You were talking about failure earlier, right? You learn a lot from failing. I think the only thing that stops us from failing faster, failing more often, is our ego or insecurity or being embarrassed of looking bad. But I think a question I often ask - not often, I'm pretty sure I have asked almost all my mentors and guides and colleagues, people that I respect - is what mistakes have you made lately? What mistakes have you made long ago that I can hopefully avoid? Because you shortcut years of your life by not making the same mistakes others have made. So that's a question I really like asking people. And yeah, that would be a question I'd be fine answering if you're interested.

Brian Kelly:
Yes, so, now I like to turn the table and actually ask that of you. So, what would you say -- you can say some time ago or recently, what is some of the biggest mistakes or one big mistake that crosses your mind that you've made that will benefit others by not doing the same thing?

AJ Rivera:
Sure. So, again this is maybe an obvious one, but I think for the people who are watching and who will potentially watch a replay. The biggest mistake I think is not taking your dream or your business or your goals super serious, right? And I mean that in lots of ways. Oftentimes - Okay, for me, I had my gyms and I struggled for years before I was very successful with them. And the reason I struggled is because I was afraid to invest in my business because I didn't want to. I wasn't taking it seriously basically. Even though I had the businesses, I had two locations that were both barely making money at first. I wouldn't invest with different companies are different -- yes, I've hired consultants and mentors and stuff like that. And I waited for a long time to take action on those things. Some of those things that I used were really great and some of them weren't so great. But even the ones that weren't great got me closer to the thing that would eventually help me break through. And so, if you have a business and you're stuck, don't just stay stuck and expect it to change, right? That's the definition of insanity. Like we've heard a bunch of times, is repeating something over and over again and expecting something to change. So, don't be afraid to ask for help and ask for help that's appropriate with your level of success. If you're training somebody out of your garage, it's your first time - I always go to trainers because that's who I mostly work with, - if you're training somebody out of your garage, you just got certified, you have no clients, like read some books, right? If you have a gym and you don't know how to get clients up to twenty and you want one hundred, hire somebody to help you do that! Maybe a consultant, maybe an agency. Maybe your clients aren't getting results - maybe get some certification or have a specialist come in and train you. So, just looking at the obvious problems and not being afraid to invest time, energy or resources in them, that was a big mistake I made that took me -- it cost me some time. I would have been here faster had I moved sooner. That's the one, that's like the biggest mistake that -- I don't make it as much anymore. And so, I think a lot of times we get stuck and paralyzed in inaction. So, just pick a direction and kind of go because even if it's the wrong direction, at least you now know that is the wrong direction and you're getting a lot closer to getting to your goal, where you want to be.

Brian Kelly:
Yes, so, not taking action is what I read into. That, which was definitely -- another one that rings really true with me as well is until - gosh, six or seven years ago - I was not an action taker. Then I learned, actually through NLP, that helped me to become an action taker. I went through a process similar to the one I actually took your audience through there, AJ, back some time in Southern California on stage, which basically releases -- and we call it fear, but it's really that resistance. It's not the fear of fight or flight or scared of something, it's really the resistance of that little devil that pops up on your shoulder and says, "Hey, you're not worthwhile doing this or what are you thinking? You're going to invest money on this? That's crazy!" You know, that voice! Well, that took that voice completely off. (Brian gestures with hand) It just flew off. And from that day forward I've been able to take action easily and effortlessly. As long as I know it's going to be good for me, I think it. You never know. We don't have a crystal ball, but if you take no action, you will go nowhere. I just made that up, that's pretty good. (Brian and AJ laugh) Trademark that! And so, take notes, all of you. And I'm not going to tell you anything I don't do. (Brian holds up a notebook) This is from tonight. This is just from tonight listening to AJ. I keep all of these in a file. This is gold. And I appreciate you beyond measure for coming on. I know you're very, very busy. And it's just amazing to have you, to listen to you. This is the longest you and I have ever had a chance to actually converse in one sitting, which is really the reason I did this, just so know. No I'm just kidding.

AJ Rivera:
Yes, I knew it, I knew it. (Brian and AJ laugh)

Brian Kelly:
Yes, I'm a stalker, baby. So there's one more question I want to ask you before we close out the show, AJ. And it's a heavy hitting one and it's one that I've asked all of the preceding guests - the same question and it's a doozy. And so, again, if this one takes you some time to come up with the answer, not a problem. I know folks will wait for it and they will be really leaning in and interested to see what your answer is to it. And before we get into that, real quick, again for those of you watching live, this is that time: We're going to show you how you can win that amazing vacations stay - five night vacation stay at a five star resort in Mexico - again brought to you by PowerTexting.com. So, let me give you how to enter to get a chance to win this amazing, amazing prize. (Showing information on the screen) There's two ways: one is just go to the website that you see on your screen. It's called ReachYourPeakLLC.com/vacation. And just remember that 'vacation', just as you see it on the screen, is all lowercase. The rest of that URL or website address, it doesn't matter the case, but just type it in with 'vacation' lowercase. Alternatively, you can text the word PEAK - that's PEAK to the number 661-535-1624. Again, that's text the word PEAK to 661-535-1624. Go ahead and do that right now and we will either announce it right before we close the show or a little after. I'll do that on Facebook, I'll connect with you. I'll have your number to text you back and we will announce the winner publicly. It will be amazing and fun. All right, go ahead do that. Do that now. And then come back. Because now, we've got that amazing question that AJ sitting here going, "oh my goodness, what the heck is Brian going to ask? I have no idea." (AJ laughs) The cool thing is, every single person -- so, I bring on the best of the best onto theis show. I kid you not. And there isn't a single one of them - I see them, right now, I'm looking into AJ's eyes, I've looked into the previous guest's eyes - not a single one of them seemed fazed in any way because they are so true themselves, they have a character, they have the integrity. They don't care. "Bring it. Whatever the question is, I will handle it." And that's what I love about what I get to do on this show. I get the most amazing people. And so, I know I've lead you down this path for a while, AJ, and you're probably going, "Come on, get to the dang question already." (AJ laughs) And now, to take the pressure off. For everyone watching, for you, AJ, for you listening, there is no wrong answer to this question. It's impossible to answer it incorrectly. Cannot, cannot do that. Because the only correct answer, the only correct answer is yours, AJ. It's yours. So, that just took all the pressure off, you can relax and take a deep breath. And no, you don't need to because you're not fazed. Look at him, he's relaxed already, he's almost asleep, look at him. (AJ covers his face and laughs) So, AJ Rivera, here it comes. Are you ready for it?

AJ Rivera:
I'm ready.

Brian Kelly:
AJ Rivera, how do you -- how do you, personally, define success?

AJ Rivera:
How do I define success? I don't know. It's a good question. I think I probably define success as just, kind of like what we were talking about earlier, getting a little bit better every day. I don't think it's this arbitrary thing that we aim for. People like to set arbitrary numbers like six figures, seven figures, eight figures, and I have some friends and colleagues who hit seven figures or eight figures and then they kind of look at me. We all, they look at me, they look at each other and they're like, "what do you do now?" Right? So, it's going to be different for every single person. I think what's important is that you're just getting better and using what you're good at to serve people - whatever that is. It doesn't always have to be -- it's definitely not just money. I don't think somebody who makes ten million dollars is "more successful" (AJ gestures quotation marks) than somebody who makes me a million dollars or whatever. We each have our own sort of definitions for what we want our lives to look like. Yn'tour greatest success in your life might be raising children who are terrible. Right? Like that's pretty hard thing to do. And so, that might be something that you could qualify as a successful life. Your goal may be to have a yacht and a Tesla. And that might be cool. I think, overall, as long as you're growing instead of shriveling up and not growing, that would be -- that's what's important to me, getting a little bit better every single day and serving o,ther people and watching them get better too. It's personally where I find my own fulfillment. While I love succeeding, whatever that is, I love watching my clients and my co-workers succeed as well. That is what really stimulates me, personally, and when I see them happy, all of them, and them thriving, that for me it feels like I'm succeeding.

Brian Kelly:
True to form, every single show - I told you this before the show, AJ, - that not one of you to this date has answered that question the same way. And that's why I said the only good, the only right answer is your answer. And I took notes on that as I always do on each of. -- This is for me the biggest question of them all: the crescendo. I mean, we went through a lot of great, unbelievable value tonight and this is the cap. This is it. This is the icing on the cake. I know, don't eat cake. We're in fitness. Getting a little bit better every day and then you bookended that with using what you're good at to serve people. And see, that's again, we already talked about this earlier on the show, that's one of the common threads I've seen through all successful entrepreneurs, is that word 'serve' - to serve others. And also true to form is something you did not say it was for you personally. And that was - you actually said, quote on quote, "it's not about money." And that means, for you it's not about money. It may be for some people. That's one other a common thread amongst everyone I've interviewed thus far. Not a single entrepreneur on this show yet has to say that money of any kind - like six figures, eight figures - was their definition of success. Does it mean that's wrong? Absolutely not. It just means that was their answer. And that you and those value serving others more than money. Because is money necessary? Absolutely. Is that important? Yes. The thing is, is what drives people like AJ is not that. It's serving others - that will produce the money. And as that money comes in, that gives him the ability to serve more, and to scale it's business larger and to help more people. That is what I love about what I get to do. It is to interview people, amazing folks like AJ. It's just phenomenal. And so, before we let you go, AJ, and I appreciate you for sticking on a little bit longer. Just a couple minutes. And that is: what is the best way for folks to get in contact with you? And please, be respectful of this when he gives you contact information. Especially, he's a busy man and he's primarily in the realm of helping fitness professionals build their businesses, so if that's you, then that's probably - you're a good fit to reach out to AJ. And I'll leave it up to AJ to screen out if others come that are not looking for that, but want advice in other areas. Maybe you have a business I'm unaware of that you can help in other areas. So, I don't want to also filter that. So, what is the best way for folks to get in touch with you, AJ? Is at Facebook, text, or e-mail?

AJ Rivera:
Yeah, I mean, they can you can go to AJRivera.com, you can go to FitProHero.com. You can go to the Fit Pro Hero Facebook page and you can find me on Facebook at AJ rivera. Any one of those things work. And we have people - whether it's me or somebody else - who responds pretty quickly to all of that. So, yeah, if you want, there's -- I know the websites have free tools, free guides on how to get leads for your gym, free trainings that you can just devour. Yeah, those are all over there.

Brian Kelly:
Yes. I didn't even mention that. One of the things AJ does is overdeliver. I did mention that. I definitely did. But I get videos and e-mails from you all the time and they're all value packed and you're up standing on white boards or flip charts or actual PowerPoint or you're just walking on the beach, giving nuggets. I love it all. So this is a guy you want to follow if you're in the fitness industry. I kid you not. So, reach out to him reach out to his team and don't be disappointed if you don't get to him directly. Just be persistent and be professional when you do that. That's my request of you because I love this guy. All right, well, that's it for our show there my friend, AJ Rivera. Thank you once again so, so very much for coming on. I appreciate you, my man.

Brian Kelly:
Brian, it's an absolute pleasure. Thank you so much for having me.

Brian Kelly:
Absolutely. And all of you watching, listening to live or the recording later, we thank you as well for joining us for The MIND BODY BUSINESS Show. That is it for now, we are going to check out of here. We'll see you again on the next show, next time. Be blessed everyone. So long for now.

Announcer:
(End card on screen) Thank you for watching and listening. This has been the MIND BODY BUSINESS Show with Brian Kelly.

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A.J. Rivera

A.J. is the Founder of a multi-million dollar company called FitPro Hero™, the #1 Paid Media Agency on the planet helping FitPros never worry about leads again.

He's been featured on Business Insider, Entrepreneur, Barbell Shrugged, Success Magazine, CNBC, and a few other places.

Connect with A.J.:

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