How to Push Past Failure to Pivot to Success with Mitch Russo – Ep.40

Welcome to Daily Confidence for Entrepreneurs Show Episode 40.

In this episode, join my friend Mitch Russo and me, discover How to Push Past Failure to Pivot to Success.


Listen to the podcast here:


  • What do you do when faced with Failure?

  • How can new entrepreneurs be confident in creating new products?

  • What are the mistakes in pivoting?



9:07 – We pivoted into something successful, not even knowing that we would.  

11:34 – The bottom line is that I had set aside that money, knowing full well that if I lost it all, I would have to be okay with that.

29:25 –  Building power tribes, and certification programs is a high ticket program. But the ROI is so powerful. 

35:45 – Human beings are designed to rely on one another for help and to provide the help we need from others.  

40:20 –If you don’t do the things that you’re reading about. If you don’t take action, then in effect, it was worthless, nothing works.



Mostafa Hosseini  0:02  

Welcome to Daily Confidence for Entrepreneurs. My name is Mostafa Hosseini, and I’m your host at Daily Confidence for Entrepreneurs. We share tips, strategies and advice that you could use and apply to your business and boost your confidence on a daily basis. 

The tips and advice and strategies could be from different areas of your business. Whether it’s your sales and marketing, finance, mindset, you name it. We have guest experts that will share with you tips and actionable advice on different areas. I have an amazing guest today. Please welcome Mitch Russo. Welcome, Mitch.  

Mitch Russo  0:39  

Hey, Mostafa. How’s it going? 

Mostafa Hosseini  0:40  

Very good. 

Mitch Russo  0:41  

Good to see you again, my friend. Thank you. 

Mostafa Hosseini  0:43  

Thank you. So our topic today is How to Push Past Failures to Pivot to Success. Did I get that right? Pushing Past Failure to Pivot to Success? 

Mitch Russo  0:54  


Mostafa Hosseini  0:54  

So that’s our search. We’re going to be giving away gifts for you to enter to draw if you like, subscribe, or comment on the show as we go through and talk about the topic. Also, if you subscribe to our channel on different social media channels when you watch it live or later. Then you ask a question while we’re talking. Or if you tag a friend who could benefit from the topic of the conversation, you enter your name into the draw for the gifts that we’re going to be giving away.

Let me do the proper introduction with Mitch. We’re going to get into his story and he’s got a ton of knowledge and experience to share with us. So Mitch Russo, who started a software company in his garage, sold it for eight figures and then went on to work directly with Tony Robbins, the man himself and Chet Holmes to build a $25 million plus business together. 

Nominated twice for Ink magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year, Mitch helps companies scale rapidly. His first book is the Invisible Organization: How ingenious CEOs are creating thriving virtual companies. He’s here with us today with his new book called Power Tribes: How Certification can Explode Your Business. Welcome, Mitch. 

Mitch Russo  2:22  

Yes, thank you, Mostafa. It’s great to be here with you. 

Mostafa Hosseini  2:24  

So where are you right now? 

Mitch Russo  2:26  

I’m in Sarasota, Florida, at a mastermind, a live mastermind. Among living human beings there are no masks. I know it’s blasphemous, right. But it feels so good to be here. I personally have been vaccinated. So I feel safe. I know that most of the room, if not all of the room had been tested before we came in. So it’s a pretty enclosed bubble here. It’s not that big but a small group as well. 

Mostafa Hosseini  2:54  

Fantastic. I love masterminds. So, next time you do it, try to sneak me in there.  

Mitch Russo  3:04  

Oh, you got it. 

Mostafa Hosseini  3:07  

I love hanging out with smart people. There’s usually so much that will transpire through masterminds and putting our minds together. Yeah, I always call it because our minds are like the greatest asset that we have. When minds come together, one plus one is not two anymore. It’s like five, or it could be 10. 

My calendar is probably already full for the next month with follow up calls and meetings from all these incredible people that are here. So it’s been a great experience so far. Love it. I cannot wait to get back to face to face meetings and masterminds. Anyway, let’s get back to our topic. Mitch, tell us about your story. What is your story?  

Mitch Russo  3:52  

My story really is a little different than most people or maybe not a lot of people, but most people probably were not addicted to heroin in high school. So let’s start there. You talk about a pivot. I was basically a drug addict and I had to find my way out. There’s a whole keynote about this. So I’m not going to get into this part of it. 

But I will tell you this. It wasn’t easy. I did finally get to the point where I was able to 18 months until I recovered. But here’s the interesting thing. Before you say poor Mitch, I want you to think of it from a different perspective because I was only 18 years old, clean, sober and was completely focused on being an adult. 

I had all of the intentions lined up to go out there into the world and make something of myself now compared to my friends. They were still smoking pot in their mom’s bedroom and basically their side hustle was delivering newspapers or some other menial job. 

This is really a blessing and that’s how it turned out. For me, it started as a tragedy and ended up as a blessing as almost all blessings do in my life. Then from there, I went on and had some great work experiences. But the real significant thing I did is I learned the business by starting a rock band in high school. 

I know it sounds a little silly, but I had a purpose starting the rock band to get me the ability to pick up more girls. Because you see, I was a skinny guy, I was kind of small, and I didn’t play a lot of sports. I gotta tell you, it was, it was a great strategy.

So I was a strategist at 16 years old. And I figured out how to get the band to the point where we were the highest paid high school band in the area, making $500 a night in 1970, you know, translate that into today’s dollars. So that was a million bucks.

Practically one Bitcoin. That’s a lot of money back then. But what happened was, I learned these core things about business, that later when I was 28 years old I had a confrontation, I had a problem. I couldn’t figure out how to solve it. 

So I had breakfast with a next door neighbor. We talked about the problem. To my shock, and surprise, he came up with a solution about six weeks later.  I look at this thing, we could build a company around this. He had no idea what I was talking about. 

Frankly, I don’t know what I was doing because I had never built a company before other than shoveling snow as a kid. But I said, this is my time. This is it. I see it in front of me it was like in 3d. The whole thing just materialized for me instantly. 

So we built a company, but what happened was that we worked six months to solve a problem that did not exist six months later. We basically created software to keep track of time, IRS, so that we could deduct our back then personal computers that were non tax deductible, because they were toys according to the IRS. 

The only loophole was that if you kept contemporaneous records of usage, that means you kept a log, you could then deduct your computer. That’s the software we invented. That’s the software we built. We both quit our job on Friday and on Monday, the IRS changed the rules. 

So now, we threw a fit of anger, toss things around the room for a little while, considered going out getting drunk, but we said we’ll do that later. What we then said is, what can we do with all of this great work that we did? Here’s what we had, a time tracking engine. How do we use this? Who else needs this? 

My partner and I started asking ourselves questions, like the old phrase, we burned the boats. Both quit our jobs. We have no other income. I had some savings. So did he. We literally had planned on starting that company Monday, and that opportunity was now gone. 

What we did is we discovered that there’s a whole segment of the professional population that keeps track of time. We started doing research on how lawyers keep track of time, how do accountants, how do consultants and architects keep track of time, and then the billing system, all in three months on top of the work we’d already done, and that became TimeSlips. 

Now, to be honest, if that other program would have ever launched, it would have failed, because it was a stupid little thing. Nobody really cared except me. We might have sold a few of them then fast forward to the end game. By the time we sold TimeSlips, we had 250,000 customers. So we pivoted into something successful, not even knowing that we would, but here’s the way the universe works. 

We first had to fail in order to discover the place to go with the technology and the product that we didn’t develop, or else we could have never gotten there. We’re not lawyers and we don’t know what lawyers do to keep track of time. But once we had a time tracking tool, then we discovered that there was a need in other places. Make sense?

Push past failure and pivot to success Ep.40
How to Pivot to Success

Mostafa Hosseini  9:41  

Absolutely. I’m guessing as a seasoned entrepreneur and business owner, you have a lot of stories to share with us about big failure stories. I mean, you shared a few here.

What is your biggest failure story and what did you do?

What was the situation like for you? 

Mitch Russo  10:06  

Well, I have to say, probably the biggest failure story was when I sold my software company and got paid a lot of money. Well, I just did what many entrepreneurs are striving to do.

I’m basically a genius, right? After all, I’m 40 years old, I sold a company, I’m a genius. I know everything now. Right? Well, again, the universe has a way of putting you in your place, as well as teaching you. So I went and invested, probably half a million dollars into, I would say, 10 to 12, maybe 15 different companies. 

Then bust arrived in March of 2000. With bust, niches fund bust, so I lost all of my money in a matter of 90 days. I would say financially, that was probably the biggest, biggest failure that I had, in one concentrated place. I’ve had several others, but that was financially the worst. 

Mostafa Hosseini

So what happened next? What did you do? 

Well, you know, I may be dumb, but I’m not stupid. What I realized was that I had set aside this. I may be done, but I’m not stupid. Well, I think being stupid is not knowing how to pick up the cues. Being stupid is not responding to the environment and not being knowledgeable. 

So I was dumb but I was not knowledgeable. I assumed I was, that’s being dumb in my book. But being stupid would be doing it again, or doing it the same way again. I think that’s what I meant when I said that. But the bottom line is that I had set aside that money, knowing full well that if I lost it all, I would have to be okay with that. As hard as it was to swallow. I actually was okay with it. I wasn’t happy about it. 

But then on top of that, I suffered another financial setback, I had to divorce. I ended up getting divorce after 14 years of marriage. Lost another significant chunk of my net worth. Again, this is life. I didn’t like it. But I still had enough to move me forward and get to the next level at that time in my life.

That’s when I met Chet Holmes, not met him, but reconnected with him. Chet and I had been friends for many, many years. We stayed friends after I sold the company. And we talked almost every week, and we never talked about business. In fact, one thing we used to say all the time is, “Hey, man, wouldn’t it be great if we could go into business together?” Well, I went in one direction, he went another. 

Then one day, he called me up and said, “Hey, I have some problems, do you think you could help me?” and I said, “Sure.” Basically, without getting into the details of it. I solved his problems in about six weeks. It came down to basically doing what I would call standardized business functions like recruiting.

So I was able to step in and relieve some of the pressure and tension between his team members. I was able to handle all of the recruiting for Salesforce. We tripled his Salesforce, and we doubled sales in two to six weeks. Again, that my goal was to help him. So I said, “Okay, buddy, you’re done. You should be good from here. “

He said to me, “What do you mean?” I said, “Well, you told me that this is what you wanted. So I didn’t even pick somebody who could run it for you. So you’re all set.” He goes, “I don’t know. No, that’s not gonna work that way.” What do you mean? He goes, “Well, first of all, what am I going to do with this $18,000 check on my desk.” 

I said, “Why do you have a check?” He goes, “Well, that’s what you earned from the people that you recruited, you get a percentage of everything they sell.” I said, “Well, that wasn’t the deal. I didn’t know that. I didn’t want your money.” Because look, I don’t want you to stop doing what you’re doing. “We’re going to grow this thing continuously. So take the $18,000 and keep doing it”.

I was at the time trading options. So I actually had time to do this. I  would put my trades on in the morning, I’d monitor them side monitor and I still work. So that’s what I did and I ended up helping build the Chet Holmes organization. I came in first basically as as a helping hand, then as a recruiter, then running the division and then starting three new divisions and then running the company. 

That’s when I got introduced to Tony Robbins. So Chet tells me that, “Mitch, before we go to to Tony.” Yeah. Who Mitch is, what does he do? Oh, I’m sorry. Chet Holmes, tell me about him. The people that don’t know him. What does Chet Holmes do? Okay, so what did he do? Yeah, as you know, he wrote a book called The Ultimate Sales Machine, maybe one of the greatest marketing books I’ve ever read.

I’m not just saying that because he’s my friend. I believe someone told me my name is mentioned in it three times because I think he used me as a testimonial many, many times over. But the bottom line is that Chet was one of the smartest, and one of the most aggressive business people I’ve ever met. 

When he started calling on me as a salesperson, he never gave up. He had something that he wrote about called Pigheaded Discipline. And boy, did he have pigheaded discipline, he never gave up when it came to trying to close me as a client. 

in fact, eventually a year, almost a year and a half later, I did buy ad space from him, I negotiated a killer deal, I got like a double page for color spread for the price of one black and white. We ran that and it blew the doors off my company. It was unbelievable. The effect of this one small this one series of ads in a magazine called California lawyer, which had a circulation of about at the time maybe is 125,000.

But it was such a focus magazine so core central to my markets that the ad was like, beautiful. The ad was produced by a Boston agency. They were way more than I could have afforded. But I did it anyway and it really worked. So now we become really good friends. Before I know it, jets flying out to see me taking me to dinner, I’m flying out to California.

Together, we both meet in Vegas and gamble together and have all kinds of fun guys do. You know, we went to  sporting events and strip clubs, all the stuff we used to do when we were young. But the bottom line is that we ended up building a very deep friendship. 

Later, when he was in trouble, and he called me, without hesitation, I would jump in and help him. So Chet was a master at business he created to this day are echoed by thousands of business people all over the world and most of those are in his book.

We first had to fail in order to discover the place to go with the technology that we have.

Mostafa Hosseini  23:42  

Very nice. Now, I made a couple of notes here. Number one is to visit Mitch, when I can and explore your heaven down there.

You know up here, it’s like a winter heaven in Canada, but down there you guys get some more sun than we do. So yeah. If I’m down there, I will definitely stop by to grab coffee. I love the ocean and all that.

So the question is what are some of the biggest mistakes that entrepreneurs make around taking care of themselves? Because you seem to be taking care of yourself pretty well. 

What are some mistakes that entrepreneurs make? 

Well, let’s think about this together. I mean, when you were younger, and you were just starting out? Did you really put any limits to the amount of hours you worked? 

Mitch Russo  24:44  

No, I still don’t. Okay, well, I do it because it’s not wrong. It’s not like I am so organized that every night I have all of these wonderful activities to do. Sometimes I just literally need to have my girlfriend come by, maybe pour a glass of scotch, maybe sit on the porch, watch the sunset, and then maybe cuddle on the couch and watch some TV. 

It’s not that complicated and I don’t need a lot to really enjoy my life. But what I do know is that if it’s dark out, and my computer’s still on, it’s time for me to think about shutting it off. 

Now, the only real exception to that is that I have a team in India, they are on a whole different schedule as me. They’re incredible people. And sometimes I do need to work with them past my normal business hours, because they’re in different time zones. But that’s really just about the only exception.

Mostafa Hosseini  25:43  

Got it. So what are you doing now? Who do you serve?

Mitch Russo  25:49  

Well, on one hand, I still work every day, every one of my non-off days, I’m still working with clients. The reason this is because I just love seeing a person’s life in business change in sometimes as little as a few months.

On the low end, I call that the low end, these are my one day programs, they take two months, I meter the amount of time.

I work with folks on whatever it is that they need. During COVID, I was able to shift many keynote speakers from stage to online to revenue in five days. So that became a fun thing to do for a while. I still do that too. 

But my big thing is Power Tribes. Now let me quickly explain this. When I built TimeSlips Corporation, I discovered something, I had no idea that it was a thing, we basically had figured out a way to build certification as a way of growing the business. 

Now what we were able to do is we were able to certify our very top best clients, we were able to charge them every year, we were able to enable them to sell our products, we enabled them also to charge for their own sessions. We invited them to all of our public events. So what we ended up doing is two things. 

  1. Number one, we generated over a million in revenue from our certified consultants just in enrollment fees every year, and that was pure profit. 
  2. Then the second thing we did is build our third largest sales channel without even realizing that was going to happen. 
  3. The third thing that we did, and this may be the most important is we built a culture of incredible individuals who I would say I loosely use this word, I would say we loved each other. This was not like having employees, my certified consultants were my second family. These were people who we would do anything for each other. 

I have cases where I need to support a certified consultant. I’d get on a plane and fly to their city, if that’s what they needed. Because they were so important to me and I wanted them to win.  

When I sold the company, everybody was happy for me except them. They were angry, because they knew that the new buyers would probably never treat them the way I did. But that for me was an incredible experience. 

How to push past failure and pivot to success
Power Tribe: How Certification can Explode Your Business

Mostafa Hosseini

Does that relate to you? You talked about certifying people, and that’s, I think, related to your new book the Power Tribe: How Certification can Explode Your Business.  

Mitch Russo

Yes. That book is like a result of my experience in building teams and certifying people and all that alternate sales channels, teams, certification programs, coaching programs. I mean, after doing all of that, for all the years that I have, I decided to create a blueprint book called Power Tribe. 

You know, does it have everything I’ve ever learned? No, it’s a book, but it has enough in there so that people can really get a good start on their own. One of the things I do in the book is give out my email address and say, “Hey, got a question? Send me an email.” I answer emails all the time from people who read the book. I love doing that. 

But the bottom line for me is that I really want to build power tribes, I want to build certification programs. Now, in all honesty, it’s a high ticket program. But the ROI is so powerful. The business proposition is so strong, that if you’re the right type of company, it makes a lot of sense. 

Mostafa Hosseini  29:40  

Absolutely. I mean, if you have the right type of goal, you would invest any amount of money to get there. For example, in January, I just signed up for 25 grand worth of coaching in three months. My buddy was like, “Oh my God 25 grand, you gotta send in Canadian dollars, that’s like 3 million bucks.”

So I called up a couple of coaches that I knew could help me. I signed up and called them up, “Hey, I need you to help me with this thing, how much? It’s 18 grand. Done.” The other coach, “How much?It’s eight grand. Done.” Then my buddies are like “25 grand in three months?” I’m like, “Yeah, if you want like a million dollars, or $2 million in a year . 25 grand is like peanuts compared to that.”

Well, what happens when you bring in a coach is two things.

  1. Number one, you compress time. So instead of taking a year or two, to get to a certain place, failing on and off along the way, you bring that down to, as you said, three months, you just get boom.
  2. Now the thing that you’re buying, is you’re buying the experience of someone who’s done it before. So my tip is, if you ever want to hire a coach, never hire somebody who’s never done what you need to do before, and usually multiple times.

That’s why I mean, I’ve turned clients away, because I have not done what they needed me to do. So I had one guy come to me, with a chain of retail enterprises, they were very cool people. I really liked them and gave them some free advice. 

And I said, “Look, the bottom line is that I can’t help you. I’ve never grown a retail chain store before. I have an idea of how to do it. But I don’t want to waste your time, let alone your money. So here’s a guy who’s done it five times, and in fact, founded a company, built it to 200 stores and sold it. He’s your coach, not me.”

That’s really among coaches, we do that all the time for each other. Because we know that when the right opportunity comes along, our coach friends will refer us for it. 

So if somebody comes along and says, “Well, I’m thinking about building a coaching program or certification program. Oh, you should speak to Mitch. Mitch does that all the time.” Because that’s my experience and that’s what everybody should think about before they hire a coach.

Mitch Russo  32:01  

Yeah, and then the only thing I would add to that is, don’t get cheap on hiring your coach because getting cheap on that is going to actually cost you a lot more the money that you’re investing and the money that you’re not getting, that you’re supposed to or the business or the outcome that you’re supposed to build. That’s right.

Mostafa Hosseini

Absolutely. What’s your experience with coaching Mitch?

Mitch Russo  32:24  

Well, coaching, I hope that you hire to help you out. Yeah, I’ve at times had as many as three coaches at a time. Some of them are not business, for example, I had a nutrition coach, I had a trainer, physical training to help me really enhanced my body.

I had a mastermind coach, I paid for an expensive mastermind coach who taught me how to run masterminds. I’ve had strategy coaches that opened my mind to strategies that I’ve never really explored before, in areas that I had never looked at.

So in one case, I worked with a coach for about 60 days. I was able to double my revenue within three months after working. It was just a matter of information I simply didn’t have and he did. Not only did he share it with me, but he helped me navigate the potholes, so I didn’t fall into them. That was super important.

Mostafa Hosseini  33:31  

Absolutely. When you work with the right person that has the experience, results could happen in as much as three months. I just recently came across the book 12 Week Year. The goal is to accomplish your year’s goal in three months.

Mitch Russo  33:51  

Yes, that’s Todd Herman’s book. 

Mostafa Hosseini

No, someone else’s. 12 week Year. Todd Herman has a has a similar topic. The 90 day something? This guy, the author is Brian something. So do a one year goal in 90 days. I was fascinated by that. Then if you’re trying to do something like that, you definitely need support.

Mitch Russo

So true. Well, you need more different types of support. If you’re about to do a sprint like that, then you need nutritional support and sleep support. You need physical help in terms of getting your body fine tuned. 

I just came out of a presentation with a guy who has a drip bar. He literally is now franchising these bars where you go in for 30 minutes and you take intravenous vitamins, and the results are astounding. So some of the results he was showing during the presentation. I mean, if I had one of those near me, I think I’d be there every week at a minimum.

Mostafa Hosseini  35:04  

Absolutely. Like without the right type of support, it’s almost impossible. Right? Then it’s one of the things that I noticed is people set a goal. They’re like, “Oh, I’m so ambitious about this goal.” Then start doing it on their own. 

They try to figure it all out on their own, and it doesn’t happen, and they fail. They’re like, “whoa, whoa.” They look at failure and they feel miserable, while they could have gotten support.

True, and accountability, either coming from someone that has done it before, to just make it a lot easier, faster, more efficient. You know, the whole thing? 

Mitch Russo  35:45  

Yes, well, imagine just another example, imagine, you know, trying to learn how to dance without a dance instructor. Imagine trying to learn a foreign language without a language teacher. 

I mean, it’s just natural for us, human beings are designed to rely on one another for help and to provide the help we need from others. 

Human beings are designed to rely on one another for help and provide help we need from others.

Mostafa Hosseini

Absolutely. Another analogy I bring up as people say, I’m going to do it on my own. And I said, what else you could do on your own? You could try to build the Mercedes. You could, but it took them 200 years to build what they’re building now. Right?

Mitch Russo

It’ll only take you 200 years. But you still want to do it. You’re more optimistic than me. I give you 200 years, you still couldn’t build a Mercedes? I bet for you not know what I try?

Mostafa Hosseini  36:41  

Mitch, you have agreed to generously share your book, The Three Simple Ways to Get Free Publicity? Can you tell us about your book there that you’re sharing with us? 

Mitch Russo  36:53  

Yeah, well, the reason I wrote this book is I actually wrote it initially as a shortcut for my clients, because I found that I was teaching the same three things over and over and over again, and wasting their time and frankly, boring myself to death. 

I instead decided to write it all up and put it into a nice looking book, and give it away. The idea behind giving it away, is that it’s part of a bigger series. 

But these three tips are probably some of the three smartest strategies for growing and building a company that I’ve used over the years.

In short, they are:

  • Being a guest on other people’s podcasts like I am today. 
  • Another strategy is using PR the right way, using press releases in a scientific way to get published and do it pretty much for free. 
  • The third thing which you’re very familiar with Mostafa is Joint Ventures and how easy it is to do a joint venture if you use the formula that I share with you in the free giveaway. 

Mostafa Hosseini

So you’re sharing how it’s done in this eBook?

Mitch Russo

I am not only sharing how it’s done, I’m actually giving you the blueprint of the letters you need to send to potential partners. I’m also showing you what you need to have in order to do a joint venture.

Mostafa Hosseini  38:19  

I love it. Yeah, this is a very valuable resource. If you’re watching or listening later, either on social media or on our podcast. I put the link here in the show notes and in the comments. Go get the Mitch’s free eBook: Three Ways to Get Free Publicity and exposure to for your brand, yourself and your company. How to get JV partners, how to get published on media outlets out there, and a wealth of knowledge that he’s sharing in that book, it’s free. So click on the link and claim your book and actually read the book. 

You know, I read a stat that say people that buy books, never open it or finish it. They read like the intro, the first couple chapters, and don’t finish it. Well personally, if I don’t finish a book, I don’t feel good about it. Even if I don’t like the book, I tend to finish it because there’s usually something that helps me with my life or my business. 

I learned this from Tony Robbins saying if someone put 50 years of experience in a book, and you can read it in a day or a week, right, you have their 50 years of experience in a week. 

If Mitch is sharing his experience on how to get publicity and exposure for free, I would finish that book, if you’re serious about your business. It’s a short book first of all. 

How to push past failure to pivot to success Ep.40
The three smartest strategies for growing and building a company.

Mitch Russo  40:00  

You said, and this is gonna sound a little contradictory, but it’s really not. Words don’t take action is what teaches. So you could read that eBook. And frankly, you may not do anything at all with it. If you don’t, you didn’t learn a thing. You got some information, you’ll forget about it in a week or so. But if you do it, you will not only never forget it, but you’ll actually get a benefit from doing it. So keep that in mind. If you don’t do the things that you’re reading about. If you don’t take action, then in effect, it was worthless, nothing works.

Mostafa Hosseini 

Absolutely. If you have any, if you have any doubts or questions about taking action, reach out to Mitch. I’m sure he can help you with that.

Mitch Russo  40:49  


Mostafa Hosseini  40:50  

So Mitch, what are your top favorite books that have either made a massive impact on your life, or you recommend to people to read all all the time? 

Mitch Russo

Well, you know, probably one of the most pivotal books I read, and these may not fit your mold, business books, but I will tell them to you anyway. In 1999, someone gave me a copy of the Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. I read that book and it was like a mule kick in the side of the head. Actually moved me out of my body and made me think from a completely different perspective and changed my life.

It’s sent me down a rabbit hole that I never came back out of. And it was an incredibly beautiful and moving book. Of course these sorts of books, may or may not have an effect on you the way they did on me. But that was, for me, a very powerful experience. 

The other book that, again, is not necessarily a business book. It’s a book about life and philosophy. A love story and a story of bravery and perseverance. The book is called Atlas Shrugged. If you’ve never read Atlas Shrugged, you are in for an amazing adventure. It’s a very big book. But it is possibly the best book, most beautifully written book I’ve ever read.

What it lets you do is see the world through the eyes of a woman who went through life in the Soviet Union before moving to the United States. When she moved to the United States, she began to appreciate the freedoms that we once had back then. Amazingly, she saw the writing on the wall in the 1950s. If you read that book today, it sounds like it was written yesterday with all this going on in this world. 

Mostafa Hosseini

I think it was written by, I’m not sure, and yes, it’s capitalism, if I’m not mistaken. 

Mitch Russo

That’s right. Well, it’s about, yes, capitalism is the core underlying philosophy of the book. But in a beautiful way, not in an ugly way. It’s really around like for entrepreneurs, I feel it’s essential reading, because what you need to learn and what this book helps you understand is that you really only deserve what you create.

So if you’re in this world for handouts, if you elect the president so that you can get money from the government? Well, let me tell you, nothing is free, even though the money may be free now, but your freedom is no longer free. That’s part of what we’re all going through 1957 and that’s what we’re all going through right now.

We’re going through life in a way where we don’t understand life in many ways. Right now I don’t understand a movement that says that going to college and what you learn in engineering school is racist.

These things don’t make sense to me. Doesn’t mean that I’m racist, or maybe it does. Because if if it means that mathematics should not be learned by people, I don’t agree with that. If that’s racist, well, there you go. I believe mathematics is the core of all sciences and engineering.

Do you really want to drive on a bridge when mathematics was was banned from the engineering school that this person graduated from?

Mostafa Hosseini  44:32  

Probably not. So let’s say that those are amazing books. I’ve read the Alchemist. I absolutely loved it. It helped me to pay more attention to a smaller details. The subtle messages that we’re getting from our environment, right. Amazing. I couldn’t put it put it down. It was one of those. Part of me wants to go read it again.

I think I will. Atlas Shrugged is on my list to read, what’s the third book that usually recommend or may have changed your life? 

Mitch Russo  45:11  

Well, you know, it’s a recent book. I loved the book so much I contacted the author. We became friends, we got into a dialogue and discovered that we had a lot in common, and I was thrilled to be able to spend time with him.

The book is called Humble Alpha. And it’s by Steven can’t pronounce his last name Khun. Steven has this amazing way. He was in the Marines. He learned leadership and used it to lead people and lead divisions through hell and back. They loved him for it. When I understood the concepts of Humble Alpha, I realized that most leaders would really, really benefit from understanding them, too. So that’s my latest favorite business book that I’m recommending now all the time. 

If you're gonna work on something, commit to it. And if you if you aren't going to stay with it, get out of it fast.

Mostafa Hosseini  46:13  

Very nice. I’ll put it on my list. Now, Mitch, if you had an ad that everyone on the web could see, what would your message be?

Mitch Russo  46:24  

My message would be an ad meaning something that I would use to promote myself, is that what you’re saying? 

Mostafa Hosseini

Not to promote yourself. But your message for people of the Earth?

Mitch Russo

Well, my message is really simple and that is love yourself. Love yourself. Take care of yourself. Because nobody else will. I mean, the other people will love you, of course, but if you don’t love yourself, then you are not lovable. If you want to be loved, first, learn how to love yourself. If you are broken and stay broken, you will attract broken. You love yourself, and you see yourself as a spiritual being. 

Having a physical experience, and understanding that nothing is permanent, even disaster is not permanent. Then you will attract people with the same basic philosophy and you’ll have a much happier life. So I shed negative people. I can smell negativity and pessimism a mile away.

I had a friend who was subtly gaslighting the people around him. I don’t know if you know what gaslighting means.

Mostafa Hosseini

What does Gaslighting mean?

Mitch Russo

Gaslighting is making people think they’re crazy by challenging the beliefs that are visible to them. 

An example of gaslighting real life example is, many years ago, I asked my alcoholic wife if she had picked up the dry cleaning and she said, “Yeah, it’s in the car.” So I went down to the garage, I opened the door, and there’s no dry cleaning there. So I came back into the house and I said to her, “Where’s the dry cleaning? You told me it was in the car”. She said, No, I didn’t. I said “Just a minute ago, you told me that there is dry cleaning.” She was like “No, I never said that.” 

That’s gaslighting. Unfortunately, it could be even more subtle than that. That’s pretty obvious. But we have to be aware of that.

We start to challenge the integrity of our own beliefs of thinking, when people around us deliberately tried to use this technique to erode our confidence in ourselves.

You know, shields up when it comes to that, prevent it, get it out of your life and move on.

Mostafa Hosseini  48:39  

Absolutely. So it’s very important to get negative people out of your life. I’ve had that experience I went through Darren Hardy’s book. I forgot which one of his books but he had a workbook where he got you to list top five or six people that you hang out with. 

Yeah, and then the next part was marked to people that you should not have in your life anymore. It was a tough exercise, but when I marked him as this person should not be there because they’re negative. They’re not gonna be helping. It was a scary move. 

It’s like oh my god, this is my friend. I know him What if I don’t ? This is my brain going “What if I don’t find another person to replace with those scary mentalities? When I marked them off on that sheet to get him out of my life, he automatically was out in a matter of two to three months.

Mitch Russo

It’s just life was so much easier without the negativity and the constant grind of you trying to do something positive and them going, you know, “no, no, no, don’t do that. Or it’s not going to work.” They’re not supporting you in any way, shape or form. Right. So it’s called Damning with faint praise.

What damning with faint praise say?

Mitch Russo  50:00  

So Mostafa, you come to me and say, “Hey, Mitch, I got this idea, I have this thing, it’s going to be really great.” Then they say, “Yeah, it sounds like it might be okay, well, we’re going to get the money. Who’s going to buy it? You really think they’ll buy that?” That is a form of negative thinking. 

On top of that, what it sounds like I’m trying to do is dissuade you from following your dreams. I suggest you run when that happens. But recognize it as fast as you can. Because if you somehow don’t recognize, it can suck you in.

Mostafa Hosseini  50:41  

Mitch, this has been an absolutely amazing conversation, and with your wealth of knowledge and expertise, and as a seasoned entrepreneur, I feel like we could go on for hours and hours and it would still be interesting, and I would still have questions for you. 

So I would hope that I would have you back on the show, maybe later this year, or next year. Keep exploring and tap into your wisdom and knowledge. So people could get more and learn more from you.

How to push past failure and pivot to success
Success is right around the corner!

Mostafa Hosseini

Mostafa Hosseini  51:13  

Is there anything that you would like to add that we haven’t talked about?

Mitch Russo

The only thing I would say is that take the long view, don’t give up, don’t just fall victim to shiny objects. If you’re gonna work on something, commit to it. And if you if you aren’t going to stay with it, get out of it fast. But if you stay on the road, and you make some mistakes, it’s okay, pivot, get get a go around the mistakes, go around the blockages and, and continue working on it. 

You know, it took me a long time to get my software company successful, way more time than I thought it would. I didn’t get a salary from that company for two and a half years. Well, you might think some people would give up. 

I mean, you’re working two and a half years for free. You’ve exhausted all your savings. It might be time to give up? No, because it was literally at that time that the company exploded. So hang in there. Success is right around the corner.

Mostafa Hosseini 52:27

Absolutely. It takes time. Yep, some of this stuff, some of the stuff that I’m just noticing recently is that when you plant a seed, it takes time for the tree or the flower to grow. We cannot expect it, sometimes depending on the type of tree that you’re planting. Some seeds take longer to flourish. Sometimes it takes a year or two. As humans, we want things now. But it takes time. It’s just like you said it’s around the corner. So hang in there. 

Thank you very much. I really appreciate you sharing your experience generously. Gang, if you haven’t done so already, get access to Mitch’s free eBook, Three Simple Ways to Get Free Publicity Exposure for Your Brand and Your Business. I put the link here in the chat comments if you’re watching on social media, and it’ll be in our show notes for the podcast.

Now, one way that I help business owners boost their confidence is by helping them simplify and consolidate what needs to happen on to a One Page Marketing Plan. This happens over over the weekend, three day boot camp called Simple Marketing Formula. 

The next round is coming up in February 19 to 21, that’s where we get together in a live environment with other business owners who are experiencing the same thing as you are and build their one page marketing plan that you can use on a daily basis. I’ll put the link here in the chat box, check it out. We’d love to have you there. 

Again, if you have any questions about what we talked about with Mitch, put it in the chat box or send it to us and we’ll get back to you on those questions. If you like subscribe, comment tag a friend on any platform, we will enter your name into a draw for a free gift that will be given away. Also if you rate our show on AppleSpotify or Google podcasts and tell us about your experience about the topics that we discussed here with Mitch or other guests that we have. 

Thank you very much. My name is Mostafa Hosseini. Thank you for joining Daily Confidence for Entrepreneurs and along with my amazing guest, Mitch Russo. So, I hope you have a great day and we’ll see you on our next episode.


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