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Wired for Success TV
Mastering the 7 Areas of Life
www.wiredforsuccess.tv Presented by
Melanie Gabriel & Beryl Thomas
[Episode 19] How to Live Your Dream
How To Live Your Dream - Wired For Success [Episode 19]
Beryl: Hello and welcome to another episode of http://www.wiredforsuccess.tv. I am Beryl Thomas and with me is my co-host Melanie Gabriel. Say hi Melanie. Melanie: Hello everyone. Beryl: Now imagine telling your family and friends that you want to quit your steady job, relocate to another continent where you can’t even make yourself understood and live life as a ninja. Well that’s exactly what today’s guest, the remarkable Izzy Arkin, did. Facing all kinds of resistance, Izzy still stepped away from a comfortable life in California but one that was slowly killing him on the inside. He stepped into a life in Japan which allowed him to harness all that he knew he really was and opened up for him a life rich in experiences and passion. Today he shares with us how he developed the mindset to see him through his many challenges, to create this dream life that’s still evolving in very exciting ways. As he modestly states, there’s nothing special about him. Anyone can do this and his mission now is to teach others exactly how they can achieve a thrilling and vibrant life too. So welcome Izzy. Izzy: Hello. Thank you. Beryl: Great to have you as one of our guests. So Izzy, you appeared to have life pretty sorted there back there in California. Tell us about that life and exactly why it was destroying you and you felt you had to move on and do something so very different. Izzy: Yeah. When I decided to make this move and this all kind of fell upon me, I was in my fourth year teaching and I was very, very surprised when it did start to hit me because the previous three years, I had enjoyed teaching and I actually thought the previous years I wanted to give my life to this. So I had enrolled in a master’s program. I was in the middle of getting a master’s degree in education and I moved to a new school. I think I had changed as well and my expectations of why [0:02:25] [Indiscernible]. I was in my late 20s and expectations of what I wanted started to change and the job had changed as well. So I started to get into this kind of strange feeling of like OK, I want – I thought I wanted to do this but I feel really unhappy. And it’s like well, wait, everyone told me I was supposed to do this. Like this is exactly what I was told to do. Get my degree. Get a good job. Move up the ladder and I was getting support from everyone at the school. All my friends were like, “Wow, you’re doing great.” My family is like, “Wow, you’re doing great,” but like inside, I was just – I’m not happy. Like I am not happy and so it really forced me to step back and start exploring everything. It was a definite depression, like I was very unhappy.
Beryl: So that’s a big step there and I can hear in your voice how that must have felt. So, to start to swim against the tide and actually to say to these people around you, people that cared about you, your family and friends who wanted the best for you obviously. But how was that when you actually had to start kind of coming out and saying, “But I do want to do something different”? Izzy: I think what happened was I kept to myself for a while because initially it was I didn’t want to admit it to myself at first because I was doing everything along this journey. So it’s like oh well, I’m totally committed to education so I’m getting my master’s degree in education. I put in thousands and thousands of dollars into school to get this degree and so for me and myself, to even admit it to me at first was very difficult and challenging. I came to the realization when I was actually driving on the middle of a Saturday in Los Angeles and it was so bad, my hands were shaking, and I like had to pull over to the side of the road and I just broke down in tears and it was just overwhelming and I was like OK, obviously something has to change. I’m not doing something right here. So when it reached the point to tell other people, it was like, look, everything I have done is not working. So it wasn’t even like a matter of hey, I care that they cared about me but it wasn’t hard for me in terms of like, “Wait, but you want to leave all this?” It was like yes, I do. This sucks what I feel. I don’t care what you think. I need to change. So it kind of gave me that intense conviction of like something has to change now. Beryl: So you had been interested in martial arts for a very long time. So did you have this feeling inside you that you just needed to pursue something that interested you more? Izzy: Yeah. I think what I started to realize was the pain was so intense. There’s like an overwhelming massive anxiety that I was just always feeling that it was like I don’t want to feel this. It would be amazing to not feel anxious and it would be super amazing to actually feel like excited about life. That would be incredible. Beryl: So when you were doing your martial arts then, is that when you didn’t feel any of the depression and anxiety when you were doing your martial arts? You felt good then. Izzy: Yeah. I think what it came down to is because I was reading a lot of books to kind of help me get through it and I would talk to different people and get feedback and one of the questions that I would often hear in books is, “What would you do if you could do anything in the world?” and it was always this funny idea of like I would always say in my head like, “Well, if I could do anything in the world, I would like live in a foreign country and just train martial arts all the time.” It was my quick instinctive answer and friends would ask me the question. They would say, “Well Izzy [0:06:54] [Indiscernible] what are you going to do next?” And I always
would say kind of jokingly. It was like I’m going to be a ninja. I’m going to be a ninja and it was [Indiscernible] so it was actually a great response for me because it’s a scary question. When you have no clue what you want to do and I’m in my – like 27 at the time, 26, 27 and in “theory,” I think I’m supposed to have my life figured out even though I obviously didn’t and that’s when I asked that question. It’s to be able to kind of answer it or put some humor into it but still kind of evade it. That kind of became my answer all the time. Well I’m going to be a ninja. I’m going to be a ninja. Then they would laugh. I would laugh and then we ignore the topic. But I wasn’t joking. I discovered over time. Melanie: So what actually caused you to eventually take action on it then? Izzy: I think it was that I just kept thinking about it. I just couldn’t get it out of my head. It kept on – every single time I was at my house or with my friends or talking to my parents, I just kept on being like, “What do you want to do?” It’s like, “Well really what I want to do is I just want to be a ninja. Really what I want to do, I just want to go to another country and I just want to do martial arts.” So eventually I started to think and think about it. I asked the question to myself. What is a ninja? What does that even mean? I keep on saying this and so clearly it matters to me. So what is it? I discovered that it was – and really exploring it, really asked myself with it and sitting with the question seriously, like writing it down, looking at it. What does this mean? So the first thing I realized is like it’s a childhood dream. So I’m not thinking of a ninja in the traditional sense. I’m obsessed with it because as a child, I love ninjas. I used to dress as a ninja for Halloween. I love martial arts movies and all that stuff. So it’s kind of like an archetype in my head of the ninja. And so a ninja according to my eight-year-old brain is composed of three specific things. A ninja moves to a faraway land, trains extensively in martial arts and then challenges the traditional rules of work in life. So that’s what I’ve done. Beryl: Hey, that is you Izzy. Melanie: So having decided to do that, when you got to your foreign land and decided, “OK, this is what I’m going to do,” how is that received? Because you’re in a foreign land where the language is a challenge. The culture is a challenge and gosh, I don’t know what kind of reception did you get there. Izzy: I mean I would say I was welcome when I came here but I would say most of the people didn’t know I had come here under the guise of wanting to be a ninja. Everyone I met here in Japan was under the guise of like oh, you came here to teach English. But really I mean teaching English was just a vehicle to allow me to begin the dream, to get over here. Yeah.
Melanie: So what kind of challenges did you have to deal with practically? OK. So you got there under a guise and obviously you had to come out at sometime. So what were the challenges during your coming out? Izzy: Yeah. Gosh, there’s so many. So I mean the first is that it cracks me up because I like naively thought that oh, I just got to move to Japan, find a job and then I will just become a ninja, like it’s that simple and not at all. So I get a job in Japan and I’m placed out in the countryside and there’s like rice fields everywhere and there’s no martial arts dojos and I’ve signed a year of contract with this company to live out in the countryside. That in itself brought a whole bunch of challenges over time but then simple day to day challenges is it took me a month to finally find vegetable oil to cook with because I was still kind of like nervous being in the store and I go there. It’s all in kanji. Everything is written in kanji and I can’t read kanji at all. I can only ready old Roman letters. The thing is because it’s Japan, they have lots of Japanese sauces. So four, five times I bought the wrong sauce because I was like this is it. It’s clear and it has got a light yellowish color. The first time I did it, I got home and I put it in and I thought I was cooking. I was like this doesn’t smell – this smells strange and then I would smell it and it’s a sugar. It’s called miti [0:11:58] [Phonetic] which is like teriyaki sauce. I still don’t know what some of the other sauces I bought were. I never ended up using it. I used it once but it was quite an achievement. I did get my vegetable oil. Beryl: So did it feel like an adventure? Izzy: Yeah. I mean yes, it did. I mean of course part of the adventure is challenge and struggle. That’s a critical part of adventure and I was aware of that coming in. I had that philosophy of like look, challenge is good. Challenge is beautiful because when we face challenge, it’s a challenge because it’s a new experience. New experience comes through opportunities and new learning and growth. So from day one, I was very welcome to that idea and I mean of course when I first got here, it’s like I had worked Monday through Friday and then Saturday and Sunday, it’s like I wake up on Saturday and it’s like, “What do I do? I don’t [0:12:58] [Inaudible]. I can’t really talk to anyone. What do I do?” So I mean the first few weekends were filled a lot with riding my bike kind of everywhere and pointing at food at menus and now I have a little bit more Japanese or a lot more Japanese than I did then. So I’m able to communicate a little better. But back then, it was like I would say konichiwa to everyone. Beryl: So were there any times when you felt, “Have I done the right thing here?” Izzy: Yes, definitely. I got here about a year and a half ago in August, August 2011. I would say probably around October and November of that time. October 2011,
November 2011, I had been in Japan for three, four months. Some of the novelty had worn off so it wasn’t like, “Oh my god, it’s amazing. It’s incredible.” It was more like, “Oh my god, I can’t communicate with anyone.” There are no martial arts dojos here. I don’t really have any responsibility in my work. How in any way is this a ninja? Like this is almost the antithesis of being a ninja. I’m a confused, lost, foreigner in a country where I don’t know what I’m doing. So at that point in time, I think there was a little bit of – I don’t know if I would call it like doubting it but there was definitely kind of like, “OK, where do I go from here?” because this isn’t it. So what changes do I need to make? What adjustments do I need to make to get me where exactly I want to go? So that was a thinking time, I would say. Beryl: So do you know what something that I really admire about you Izzy that came up a lot in the previous conversation we had with you? You’ve just demonstrated that. You’re very good at questioning yourself in a very positive way. You ask yourself empowering questions. Many of us have the voice in the head that’s just talking a lot of negative all the time and we think that’s really us and we buy into it. You have something quite remarkable about you which is that asking yourself as you just demonstrated those empowering questions. Where do you think that comes from? How did you learn how to do that? Izzy: I would say without a doubt it’s from my father because I still remember like this – I mean as a kid, he would always – we would always kind of talk about, “OK, what do you learn from this? What do you get from this?” And my mother too. I mean both of them have played a pivotal role. I remember when I was in eighth grade, I broke both my knees. I fractured them, the cartilage in there and up to that point, I was always in athletics and sports and that was a huge piece of my identity was I am an athlete. I play sports. So it was really difficult for me because I was out for pretty much about a year and I remember having lots of conversations with my mother about it and my father where they would often talk to me about well, like – so what are you learning from this? This is a time for growth. This is a time to learn. This is a time to grow and they always emphasize that to me and so I think it really just – when you do that to a child who is going through their adolescence and puberty and they can do it in a manner that it had somehow gotten to my head with – I don’t know how they did it because all kids are sometimes like no, but they did it and it did enter. I mean I do remember high school because I’ve been going through some different challenges and struggles that I remember just telling my mom going, “When can I just stop learning and start enjoying? I feel like everything is a learning lesson!” I would say that began where it’s – they planted the seeds and then they constantly nurtured it, constantly nurtured it. And to this very day, I mean every struggle I’ve had is
always my father and my mother. They’re always asking me, “All right. Well, what did you learn from this?” Oh, OK. Sometimes they will tell me specifically, “Oh wow, it’s great how you were able to take this situation and do this with it, how you learned from it.” It’s like, “Oh, yeah. Thanks.” Beryl: It sounds like they’ve been perfect mentors for you on this journey. Izzy: Yes. I mean they have been pretty amazing. Yes, they have been amazing mentors. Melanie: I was just thinking, it sounds like they’ve built that foundation in you which means that the people that you’re mentoring – we should talk about that later – they’re getting that same kind of nudge and support from you. Do you find that that’s the same way that you nudge your mentees on? Izzy: Oh yes, without a doubt. My focus with people is always on my site. I talk about people, email with people. It’s always the idea of like, “OK. What can you learn from that?” Because failure, I think failure is fantastic. Failure is incredible because failure gives you such great feedback because it’s painful. So you know you have to change it and then you also are like OK, this did not work. Why didn’t it work? You analyze it and you assess it and then you kind of step away from it. You don’t take it personally. Failure is not personal. So you take it and then you learn from it and change from it. So it’s one of those things where sometimes people will tell me, “I just feel like I’m constantly failing. I’m failing.” I’m like that is incredible because if you’re failing, it means you’re taking risk and that’s great. You continue to do that but you have to learn from the failure and I think that that’s where a lot of people struggle. It’s like they fail or they call it failure but then they don’t step back and say, “How can I learn from this?” It’s like they just get the pain but they don’t get the goods. It’s like taking medicine and not getting any better from it. Beryl: So tell us then the next bit of your journey. So you were in the countryside. There’s no one to talk to. There’s no dojo and you signed a year’s contract. But you started asking yourself these questions. How were they answered? Izzy: Yes. At first it was probably around – when I really started to plunge into the question was February – I guess maybe 10 months ago now. Where I really started to explore it because in my head at that time, I saw it as two options. It was just kind of my limiting beliefs but I saw it as I could leave the job and leave Japan or I could stay with the job and stay in Japan and that’s what I initially thought and I was like – and in my head, something like there has to be another way. There has to be another way and then which was kind of obvious was I was like, “What if I left the job but I stayed in Japan?”
As I explored that more, I realized like well that would allow me to do everything I want to do because I could choose a city to live in. I could find a martial arts dojo to train on. I could control my working hours and I could really take that next leap. Now I knew at the time I was like well, this is going to have a lot of challenges because I have definitely challenges with the visa, challenges in finding a new place to live, finding a new city, finding new work. I don’t speak Japanese. I speak as much as a person could maybe in a year’s worth of learning but not enough to really [0:21:01] [Indiscernible]. OK, I got to be able to manage all this [Indiscernible] fluent speaker on the language. At the same time, I was like, “Well, what are my other options here? What are my other options? Go back to America or stay with this job?” So my thoughts at the time were basically like I have to try. I have to try. Worst case scenario, they kick me out of the country. That’s the worst case scenario and that’s a heck of a story. I tell people I got kicked out of the country. So I’m going to go for this and I don’t know what it means. At the time, I didn’t know what that meant. I didn’t know what “I’m going to go for it” meant but I was like let’s start with step one. Beryl: So what happened next? Where did you go? Melanie: Yeah, step two. Izzy: Yeah. So step two was a short period of time just trying to get – I was coming up with millions of different ideas of things I could do, which I had all sorts of ideas at the time which it kind of cracks me up because I had an idea that I would start a fitness program here in Japan. I mean I had an idea for a traveling service I was going to be getting. All these different ideas but what fascinates me about it though is that what I really wanted to do, I was ignoring. Again, like I was completely ignoring what I really wanted to do which was like training martial arts, like focus my time on training in martial arts. But yet, somehow somewhere it’s like I almost have this block up where it’s like I almost like just for some reason couldn’t still believe. Is it possible for me to do the one thing I truly want to do? I think a piece of it is fear or a huge piece of it is fear because it’s like, “Well, what if I try to do the one thing I truly want to do and I fail?” That’s really scary. That’s so scary and it’s so much easier to try and do something that I’m kind of excited about and fail because it’s not really me. But it’s like that’s why I think dreams are powerful. It’s like if I try my dream, if I fail at my dream, it’s like you can’t separate it because it’s like it’s a part of you. So it’s so scary. Beryl: The stakes are high. The stakes are very high. Izzy: The stakes are extremely high.
Melanie: But there came a point where you couldn’t avoid this. Izzy: Yes, yes. I think what happened was – it’s funny because I’ve come up with all these ideas and all these – some of them I mean totally are so out there. It’s strange and then I woke up at 2:00 in the morning. This is probably late February. It’s in late February, early March, and I remember waking up and being like, “I got it.” Like I want to be a ninja. I came to Japan to be a ninja. Why don’t I do that? The exact thing. I’m like I will leave this job. I will move to Kyoto because Kyoto is the historical capital of Japan and I love it. I think it’s such an amazing, beautiful city. It’s so historical and incredible. A lot of culture and fantastic martial arts. It’s like I will do that and I will go through all the steps and like this is going to be hard. It’s going to be challenging. Like, I’m going to have to deal with everything. I’m like I will find part-time work, enough to cover my expenses. I just need to find a place to live. I can figure out the visa stuff, like find a dojo and like as I go through it, I will write about it and share the experiences with other people because sure other people want to follow their dreams and it will be powerful because like I will – as I learn from the experiences, I will be able to share that with you and like it’s real world knowledge. It’s not textbook. It’s stuff like hey, I know this works because I’m doing it and I have a lot of things – disadvantages here. How to speak the language, the visa stuff, all probably different things. That was the beginning. Beryl: So what I’m hearing though is that teacher inside you hadn’t gone away, had it? It just found a new subject. Melanie: Expression. Beryl: Yes, a new expression. You’re now able to leverage the power of the technology that we have now on the internet to deliver your message to a much wider audience. How exciting. Izzy: Yeah. Yeah. Actually the more I’ve explored it and looked into it, it’s blowing me away because there was – during those first three years of teaching there were many times that I was like I love this. I love this. And looking back on it, it’s always what I loved was when I would be teaching a class and I would see the student’s eyes just kind of light up. And they were so excited to learn and it’s because those were the moments where it was like they were fully engaged and like a piece of them was like inspired, motivated and encouraged. It was those moments that I realized like in terms of the teaching, with the writing, the blogging, the developing videos, that exact thing has kind of transferred over into a different realm. I mean I’m extremely passionate about the idea that anyone can follow their dreams. [0:26:33] [Indiscernible] 95 percent of the people can follow their dreams and 98, 99, I mean drastically high percentage of people are following their dreams and I know it’s possible because I know that I am not special. I know that I have simply taken a lot of
action. I’ve taken a lot of steps. I have learned a lot and I have taken a lot of intentional effort to do it. I have no special skills. I’m not super talented in any way. I’m not like super smart or anything. So I know it because if I did it, using these like steps, methods and philosophies, it’s like you can too. I feel very strongly about it. Melanie: So the thing that I’m curious about is clearly with the self-inquiry and being willing to see the lesson in every experience. Eventually then you allow yourself to do the very thing you’ve come here to do and you’re also sharing the knowledge of how you’ve done this with others, leveraging the internet. So I’m curious. So with your aikido for example, what is that teaching you apart from the fact that you’re becoming very skilled at it? What is that teaching you in terms of the wider work you’re doing with transmitting your experiences and your knowledge to others? Izzy: So there’s a whole bunch of things. I mean aikido teaches me a lot about discipline and putting in the work every single day because if I want to become an expert in martial arts and really give myself to this, then I got to be willing to put the work in every single day, which means sometimes I don’t feel like going. Sometimes it’s like I would rather stay at home. But I know that over the long term if I want to get where I want to get, then I have to be willing to go on those days. Also it has taught me a lot about humility, a whole lot about humility because I am paying to do aikido. I want to be taught which means if I go there, all they do is tell me, “Oh, you’re great. Oh, that’s wonderful. That’s excellent. Wow, you’re so good.” It’s like then I will never get where I want to go in terms of martial arts. And I’ve had to learn how to especially in the beginning. It was a little bit difficult because it’s like hey correct this and there. I love it because they’re so detailed on the fundamentals at this dojo and so it’s incredible because they just make sure that – because the fundamentals are so important in life and in martial arts and everything. So it’s incredible but it was very difficult in the beginning. So it was like OK, well, all right, your finger needs to be more extended. Elbow needs to be a little bit more. I mean these are a matter of inches but they’re huge differences over the long haul in terms of the art. So that I really had to practice my own humility and be like, well, this is about improvement. This is about getting better. These guys are experts. They have been doing it for a long time. They know what they’re talking about. Listen, listen, listen. Melanie: So you can see that somehow this discipline and this attention bedded in the fundamentals, this is like transferring to what you’re teaching others. Izzy: Yes. Melanie: Yeah.
Izzy: No doubt. Yeah, it has a big impact. Beryl: And it’s also I’m hearing very much that your martial arts practice is very much about being present. Izzy: Yes, it is. It’s very much about being present and I think that that’s one of the things martial arts has taught me immensely about – to gain the most from aikido and martial arts, I have to be present because the details, that’s just – they’re so minute. I mean it’s amazing to me shifting my hips sometimes one inch to the left is everything. That’s the difference and sometimes I can do a technique and physically to the outside world, it looks the exact same but because I’m focusing on my hips, I’m getting a worlds apart bigger difference from it and I believe the same is in terms of getting stuff out of our lives. We have to come at it with the exact same focus. So if you’re a writer, and you love writing, you got to put your focus into that writing. I mean we have to learn how to. It’s a skill to be developed, to give that level of focus and detail to something. I think it transfers out to virtually all skills to be able to give that level to be present and focused and to gain the most from the experience in it of itself. Beryl: And also what I’m hearing from you there is that sometimes it’s not a big change that’s needed. If we just stay present and tweak it like you say, the hips an inch to the left, where there it has made a big difference. Just the small things made a big difference and it sounds like that has happened in your life in as much as asking yourself one apparent question could make a big difference. Melanie: Or trying just one small action. Beryl: Yes, even if it’s not right to begin with because this process of becoming a martial arts expert doesn’t happen overnight, does it? It’s trial and error. It’s refining. It’s refining. It’s refining. Izzy: Yeah. It’s kind of incredible the way that you put it. I really like that because it really is, yeah. I mean taking action is like the biggest deal in the world and it’s not necessarily the right action. The right action, that’s what I think kills so many people is this idea of like well, I have to get it right. I have to get it right. I have to get it right. Same thing with [0:32:44] [Indiscernible] aikido. It’s kind of like that for example. I’m obsessed with doing it right. I’m missing out on all these opportunities where it’s this focus of I want to get a little better. I want to get a little better. I want to get a little better. And something such as a small action as like my hips, just a small little bit of rotating a little bit more of my hips, I feel it way more and if I feel it way more in my hips, they develop way more.
In aikido, it all comes from the hips. It all comes to your center. In ten years down the road, when I continue to train martial arts, those everyday, that one inch – I mean I will be worlds apart different because my development would be so sharp and the same thing goes with giving anyone’s effort on a day to day basis, towards a dream, towards making big things happen. It’s those little choices. It’s that choice right there. I’m going to sit down and write. I’m going to sit down. I’m going to make a video. Whatever your passion is, I’m going to sit down and do it right now and it becomes this like awesome cycle where it’s building, building, building over time. Beryl: Because many people give up too soon, don’t they? And you could have given up many, many times on your dream. They give up too soon because they come up against these blocks and they think maybe the universe is telling me not to do this. I’m guilty of having done that myself too. Maybe this is a sign because this is tough. It doesn’t feel right because it feels tough. But actually small adjustments and you can move forward. Of course it’s fear that’s coming up for people, isn’t it? It’s fear as you say. There’s fear of failure, fear of success. Have you ever felt that in any way, Izzy? A fear of success. Izzy: Yeah, yeah. I have. It’s a weird thing because it’s something – I’m actually still kind of exploring that idea. Only recently have I realized where it’s a weird – it’s a strange concept because it’s almost this idea in our heads of – well like almost like, “Well do I deserve that? Do I deserve to be successful?” and it’s like “deserve” is an odd word. So when I think, it’s like well, if – because I believe as I’ve started to buy in more the idea of like yes, like yes, I should be successful. But the reason is because for me to be successful, I’m going to have to impact thousands and thousands and thousands of lives. So if I don’t attempt to do that, yes, I’m doing a disservice to myself but who I’m truly doing a disservice to is the rest of the world. So those other people that I could connect with. And I think that’s why I feel so strongly about people following their dreams is because following your dream is an individual’s opportunity to give their best to the world. So everybody wins when you follow your dream. You win a lot but other people win even more from it. I think I got a little bit away from your question but … Beryl: No, no. It’s fine because it makes me think about meaning and purpose and some of us could get into a mindset where we think in order to have a meaningful life, we’ve got to work in a charity. We’ve got to work in a soup kitchen and we’ve got to get in that very obvious kind of way. But actually what you’re highlighting is that all you really need to do is to do what you really love, to follow your passion and in that, you become a leader and people – I think people read books on how to become a leader and I need to do things to become a leader.
Actually you just need to lead yourself which you’re doing beautifully, I have to say. If you lead yourself, then you’re leading by example. Other people will be inspired because in some way, this might sound a bit weird, but you shine a light. You’re emitting something from you. You become like the Pied Piper. It’s a charisma. It’s a presence that you have. Anybody that’s doing this kind of thing does and that is so inspiring for other people because you’ve modestly said you’re an ordinary guy. There will be other ordinary people watching this, thinking, “Well actually, he’s just like me and he has done it and he has faced dark nights of the soul in doing this. And he has found a way to get there.” Is this making sense to you? Izzy: It makes total sense to me. Melanie: Yeah, and their light is ignited by yours. Izzy: Yeah. It’s an interesting thing. It’s like the ultimate irony of the universe where if we spend all of our time to impress other people and all I want to do is impress other people, so I’m just going to try so hard to impress you, it’s really not impressive at all. And the only time individuals become impressive to other people is when they stop worrying about that. It’s like I don’t really care what you think. I’m going to go ahead and I’m going to do this because I trust in this and I’m going to do it. All of a sudden everyone is like wow, that’s so impressive. It’s like I’ve been trying to impress you forever. Now I’m not trying to. Did I impress you? So it’s a fascinating thing. Beryl: Sorry, Melanie. You go, sorry. Melanie: Well it’s just one line. Picking up on impressive because as you start just doing what juices you up rather than trying to impress, the inspiration for others is how to impress themselves about what they’re capable of. So carry on, Beryl. Beryl: I forgot what I was going to say for a moment there. Oh, yes! What I was going to say was listening to you Izzy is – and this is why we don’t always value our own skills and talents because we’re just doing what we love. Other people see that gosh, I couldn’t do what you’re doing because you’re X, Y, Z. You’ve got all these degrees and I don’t have an education, all this stuff. But it’s not about any of that, is it? Izzy: No, no. Beryl: We all have skills and talents. We just don’t always see them in a way that other people do and you probably don’t see that about yourself. Izzy: I mean I will say that I do think part of leadership and part of – one of the great things about stepping forward to pursue your dream is you – it is important to humbly
identify your strengths and skills and do it in a manner. It’s like look, like this is what I’m good at. So I’m good at these things. So I want to give these things. I think that’s part of it. That’s part of the whole process of like in stepping forward with your dream, you can begin to open up those doors to be aware of those particular strengths and skills that one has and you can give it to the world and in terms of degrees and things like that, it’s like we all do. We all have friends with big, fancy degrees and they’re a depressed mess and so it’s like obviously – so that’s not the perfect answer. It doesn’t guarantee happiness. Beryl: There are different forms of education and you don’t always have to pay for one by sitting in a classroom. Sorry, Melanie. Melanie: You’re probably going to ask what I was going to – because I was going to say, “So tell us exactly how you educate or help others to fulfill their dreams.” What is it you’re actually getting them to do? What is it you’re actually putting out there? Izzy: Yeah. So I write about it in my blog, 30YearOldNinja.com and I write about my experiences and I get really specific. So for example, recently I had some issues with work and visa issues and it’s like OK, I can get kicked out of the country here. Kind of challenging. How do I deal with that? How do I psychologically deal with it? What are the steps I take? So I share that with people so they can apply it to their own lives and I always try and take whatever my own experiences are and apply them on a bigger framework. Now I try to identify kind of the principles and the steps. So it’s not like hey, I found form 1040 and filled it out. It’s more like OK, set time aside to think about it beforehand. So I write about it. I develop videos at my site as well where I go through specific things. I Skype with people. I do a lot of connecting with different subscribers to my site. I do a lot of email conversations and it’s growing and growing because I mean really it cracks me up because really on my end, it’s like I’m just following my dream. I just want to be a ninja. I just want to be a ninja and I share what I learn and then people are interested in it but people see how it applies to their life. So it’s like because I’ve gone through so much kind of challenges and struggles psychologically and physically just all these things, that it’s like most of the things, the challenges that people talk about, I’m like oh, OK. Like oh, this relates to this time when I did this or this time when I ran into this. So I can kind of help and guide them with my thoughts on how I can best serve them. Beryl: Well this has been a fabulous, fabulous interview, Izzy. I hope that you have found it interesting and maybe empowering for you too.
Izzy: Yeah. It has been great. This is really fun, so thank you. Beryl: Is there anything that we have missed out on asking you? Anything that you’re burning to share? Any final message? Izzy: Yes. So there is one thing that I just cannot drive home enough because it’s so true. Above all else, is that action is the most important thing in the world. So just take a step and there’s two different like – I always see people who keep saying like, “Well, I don’t know what to do,” or they say, well, I could do – I have too many ideas. I could do this, this and this and this. So I don’t know which to choose. And the reality is, is that if you like all of those, just choose one because you like them all. So they’re all the right choice. The only wrong choice is to sit around and do nothing because then you’re doing nothing. So please just take action. Take that first step. If you don’t know what to do, then read a book. There’s your first step. Take action. Melanie: So for those people who are ready to take action, how do they connect with you? Is it via your 30-year ninja site? Izzy: Yes. To spell it out? Melanie: Yes, please. Izzy: Yeah. So it’s 30YearOldNinja.com and when you come there, there’s a contact form right on the page. So you can contact me through that. Send me an email. Connect. Ask me questions. I’m good about that. I generally respond to every email within 48 hours, generally 48 hours. Read the blog, comment. I love connecting with people. I love connecting with people especially if they’re ready to take action. Melanie: Are you also in social media? Izzy: Oh, yeah. Melanie: Could they communicate with you there? Izzy: Yeah. So I’m on Twitter, I am @30YearOldNinja. Melanie: OK. Izzy: Then on Facebook, 30-Year-Old Ninja page as well. Beryl: And we will put all of those links on the site so people will find you easily and I know they’re going to want to. I’m a bit tempted myself to be a ninja. I’m not sure if time has passed me by but who knows.
Izzy: But you guys are – this is your ninja. It’s like what is your ninja? And it’s like you guys, your interviews. It’s like you guys are doing your ninja stuff. Beryl: Yeah. Melanie: Yeah. Beryl: Yeah. [Crosstalk] Beryl: It is. It is. It is. OK. Well, it has been fabulous sharing with you. Sorry, Melanie. Melanie: No, no. You took the words out of my mouth. We have absolutely enjoyed it and one of the things that would be wonderful is obviously this is a journey you’re on. So perhaps maybe sometime in the future we can do another interview and just follow up where things are because obviously there’s going to be a time when you will be a 40year-old ninja. Izzy: [0:45:58] [Inaudible] yeah. I think that’s great. I got some other things that – exciting things that are going on in the future and stuff. So I would love to do that. I’m committing on camera right now. I will be back. Beryl: Fantastic. Melanie: Excellent. Beryl: Fantastic. Beryl: Because we know that Izzy needs to get off to the dojo now. In Japan, it’s dojo time. So we must not keep you. Mel: Thank you for tuning in to today’s episode of http://www.wiredforsuccess.tv We would just quickly like to mention before we wrap up…. If you are watching on this episode on our site then please comment in the box below and leave any thoughts or questions there Secondly, if you are watching this on youtube, then be sure to press the subscribe button above and subscribe to our youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/WiredForSuccessTV?feature=mhee Thirdly, if you are listening to this on ITunes be sure to subscribe to our podcast channel
And if you are watching this on social media then please feel free to share this episode with your friends. You can find us at https://www.facebook.com/WiredForSuccesstv and https://twitter.com/WiredSuccessTV Lastly regardless of where you are listening to this episode from, if you haven’t done so already then please head on back to our main site, wired for success.tv and join our newsletter for updates and content by adding your name and email. We do reply to all comments and suggestions so we would love to hear from you. So thank you for tuning in and remember to tune in for the next episode of wired for success where we help you master the 7 areas of life. From myself Mel my co host Beryl, and our interviewee Izzy, we bid you farewell until next time. Take care
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