People & Processes

They might just be the two biggest keys to business.

Without them you’re not going to go very far.

People seems to be the biggest pain point for business owners.

How do you find the right people?

How do you keep them?

Train them?

etc, etc.

We’ve been pretty fortunate (with a crap load of daily hard work to back it up) that we have a rock solid team.

We have a full-time team of coaches, which is super rare in the fitness industry.

They are bought into the vision of the company, work hard, make smart decisions, and actually give a crap.

Now, they are not perfect, none of us are, but it’s solid.

I also now that didn’t happen by accident, and it didn’t happen overnight.

Here a couple highlights on the “people” part of a small business…

  • Be really clear on the job description of the type of person you want. I’m not talking skills, skills can be taught. I’m talking about personality types, outgoing, extroverted, detail-oriented, etc. Those are unique abilities, and you can’t change that about a person. I’m not saying you want those specific ones, but my point is, be clear on who you want, and it’s a bonus that they know the skills of the job.

  • Phone interview first. As a business owner you’re busy. You don’t have time to interview dozens of people. Hop on a call with any applicant for a 15-minute phone interview. Just ask them to tell you about themselves. If you feel like you can have a friendly conversation with them, if you feel you might want to spend 40+ hours a week with this person then you can bring them in for an interview.

  • Let the rest of the team have some say. I’m not saying that you can’t make the final decision, but let the team have some votes, they will be more bought in to making sure this new team member is a solid fit.

  • Have a solid (we do 90 days) onboarding program. By far the most common mistake I see people make is they hire someone and then give them zero formal training. They just expect this person knows the expectations, they expect them to be perfect, and they don’t think they ever have to train them. A strong 90 day onboarding program will fix this.

  • 1:1 Meetings. If you agree that your employees are your best asset then why not invest more into them. Just like a financial asset, the more you invest into it the more you’ll get out of it. Depending on the size of your team this will vary, but some regular 1:1 time with them to check in and see how they’re doing, chat goals and visions, and make sure they don’t have rocks in their shoes can go a long way. For context, our team meets with their Director once a week for 15 minutes, and with me over lunch for 2-3 hours once a quarter.

  • Clear expectations and roles. Again, by far the biggest mistake I see owners make is not making roles and expectations crystal clear. Most people are good human beings and they want to do work. 9/10 times the reason they’re not is because they didn’t know what “good work” looks like.

If you want to grow past a one woman or one man (it’s okay if you don’t) you’re going to need a team.

However, you can’t just expect them to be self-sufficient.

It takes daily management, daily leadership, and a lot of time.

That being said, Team Development is one of the 4 Pillars of Business, so without it, your business will crumble.

Now, let’s say you have great people, next up is great processes.

A process is anything that happens in your business.

How is the business open?

Who and how do you answer the phone?

What is a client or customer journey look like?

If you’re a product-based business, how is the product made.

Processed can basically fall under these 4 Pillars

  1. Sales & Marketing: What is your process for attracting new business? Do you follow a Marketing Calendar? How often and what do you post for content? What is your sales process? etc, etc.

  2. Operations: This is by far the biggest section and will vary greatly based upon your business. This is everything from how the phone is answered or how the business gets cleaned, to everything that has to happen with a client or customer once they start doing business with you.

  3. Finances: What is your process for daily sales? What weekly reports do you pull and analyze? What does wining look like financially on a daily, weekly, monthly, and annual basis, and how are you keeping score of that? Who does your books and what is that process? What about quarterly and/or year-end tax prep?

  4. Team Development: This is everything we talked about above. This is how you onboard a new employee, how you train them, what your meeting rhythm is, roles and responsibilities, etc.

Now, just like you can’t bring people on and forget about them, you can’t just create processes, stick them in an “operations manual” and call it good.

In fact, I personally don’t care for operations manuals.

Instead, I like 1-2 two page “play sheets” for each process.

So…you may have your four folders above, and in each folder there are a couple dozen individual “play sheets,” each one outlining a specific process.

This is important because although creating these is step one, the real work, and the work that never ends is training and holding your team accountable to these processes.

So, on a regular basis you can pull out one process (play sheet) and train the team on it.

Next week, pull out another one.

People and Processes.

Two keys to business success.

1% Better.

What Are You Willing To Change?

A lot of people hate change. 

I actually crave change. 

Focused change usually means better, and I'm all about getting better. 

1%. Right?

We spend a lot of time talking about change, and I think that's good, but I think we can get caught up in the details too quickly. 

What I mean by that is we're very quick to want to know how to grow our Instagram following, or how to market better to get more clients, but we haven't even asked the most important question...

How much are you willing to change?

Just like anything else, the bigger the change, the bigger the result. 

There is no right answer. 

Some people are only willing to change a few things, some people want to overhaul everything. 

I think it's important to reflect on what you are willing to change. 

Here's why. 

What you change is a direct reflection of your results. 

Sure, we all want results, but what have you changed?

The same input will always equal the same output. 

We all have this desire to have a better business but are you willing to make the necessary changes and sacrifices to get there?

I don't know. 

That's up to you. 

We need to think of it as a spectrum. 

On one side of the spectrum is no change at all. 

No change = No results. 

Pretty simple. 

On the other side is extreme, every hour is spent improving the business.

Some may want the results that come from that, but they're not willing to make the necessary sacrifices.

Are you willing to spend time every day to train and develop your employees?

Are you willing to stay consistent with your marketing and do it daily?

Are you willing to set up a “profit-first” accounting system and stay 100% strict with your budget.

7 days a week. 

365 days a year. 

No exceptions. 

That's what it takes.

Not to mention it probably took ten years of doing that 7 days a week, 365 days a year. 

That's that extreme side of the spectrum. 

Now, I don't know about you, but there’s probably a happy medium, towing the line with some time to recharge and have some personal time, but also spend time daily building my business.

However, with that mentality, I also can't expect to walk around with a perfect business.

Most of us probably fall somewhere in the middle of no change and the extreme example above. 

If you want to double your business you're going to have to make a lot more changes than the person that just wants to grow by 5%.

Just make sure that the desired result you want matches the change you’re willing to make. 

That's always the biggest disconnect I see. 

People want these grand results but their actions don't match and they are not willing to change as much as they need to. 

So, the question will always be, how much are you willing to change?

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

How I Generated Over 2500 Leads

I knew that headline would grab your attention :)

The reality is, I want to share how I consistently get 30+ leads every single month for the last 8+ years.

30 leads per month, 12 months a year, for the last 8 + years.

I looked back at my numbers, and since I’ve been tracking them there has never been a month where I didn’t get at least 30 leads, and it’s typically closer to 50.

One lead a day.

These “Facebook Guru’s” will try to sell you on 2,000 leads in 20 days, but the reality is I think we can all agree that we would rather have one quality lead a day than get flooded with people that just have a pulse and a credit card.

So, with that being said here are some strategies I use to get at least 30 leads every single month.

1.Your product has to be good. I don’t think we talk about this often enough. Everyone is all about getting more and more leads, and I understand you want to pay your bills and grow. However, when was the last time you looked at your “product?” Do people actually love it or are you just saying that because your bias? Do people get great results? Have you created a super-tight community that keeps people coming back? Is your business clean, are people greeted properly, and do they get 10x the value compared to what they’re paying? I believe you first have to start with this before you starting bringing people in on empty promises.

2. A daily e-mail. I firmly believe this is our local base. A large percentage of my local market gets an e-mail every day, and there’s no marketing that can compete with that consistency. I mix it things like the Super Signature, 13-word e-mails, and other deadline driven offers, but 90% of it is just adding value to their inbox. I do believe there is magic in building it up to emailing every day as clients/customers now expect it to come, and I have dozens of people that look forward to reading my daily email as soon as they get on lunch break. You can’t beat that.

3. Track & Follow Up. I’ll use the halfway point of this list to stress the importance of tracking your leads and having a relentless follow up system. It’s amazing how many business owners I talk to that don’t track their leads. Keep it simple, just a basic excel spreadsheet. Track how they heard about you and where they are on the pipeline of becoming a client/customer. Follow up until they say no or become a client. It amazes me how many businesses don’t ever call you back, return your e-mails promptly, etc. Follow up is king.

4. Video Testimonials. We know social proof is one of the best marketing efforts around. We also know that people are preferring video over anything else right now on social. So why not combine the two? We pick one client a month and get a video testimonial from them. It’s about 2 minutes long and it’s a combination of them answering questions, spliced in with some action shots of them working out. The cool thing is we now have over 50 video testimonials that we use on our website, on social media, and display at events. As an evergreen marketing effort we always have one running as a FB/IG ad, 365 days a year, rotating it after it goes above .08 a view, and we have a lot of them sprinkled throughout our website. It doesn’t matter your business, you all have clients or customers that would be willing to hop on camera for two minutes and share their success.

5. A really solid brand. At the core of all these ”tactics” has to be a really solid brand. To keep it simple, just use the One Page Marketing Blueprint. Who is your person? What is your message? If you’re looking to go deeper than that, make sure things like your colors, your font, and your language are consistent. It all matters. If your colors are blue and yellow, are those the colors that I see on your website, on your flyers, and in your business? Start to “own” certain words in your local community. A great example of this is how we own the phrase “1% Better.” All of these details are what take you from a a tactic based business, to a business that has a brand that stands for something, that has a strong message that resonates with a target market, and is known for something in the community.

6. Become a local celebrity. I believe I got that tag line from Vince Gabriele. For most of you, you’re not trying to build a national brand, you’re just trying to make sure everyone knows you within a 10 mile radius. So, put all your focus on making sure everyone in that radius knows you. That means things like chamber events, public speaking, joint ventures with other businesses, charitable work and volunteering within the community, and just being where they are. Do everything you can to become the “mayor” of your town.

7. Rock-Solid Referral Systems. We have a point of sale referral system where everyone that becomes a client gets a metal gift card that they can give to a friend. That friend gets a 30 Day VIP Experience on us. When people make their first purchase with you, they are the most excited they’ll ever be. They are in the “honey moon” phase. The mistake we make is that we either don’t ask for referrals, or we don’t make it simple, clear, and “no-brainer” enough for them. What person is not going to go home and on the drive home and think of someone to give the metal (I believe that detail is key) gift card to? We also have 6 week, 6-month, and one year letters that go out to clients, handwritten to them talking about how awesome they are. At the PS, there is a call to action to give the gift card that is paper-clipped to the letter to a friend. These two tactics alone easily generate us 10+ leads per month. It doesn’t matter your business, you can always ask for referrals.

I could keep going on, but this is enough to take action on.

“Win the day.”

Just try to get one lead today.

Don’t fall for the gimmick stuff because we know it doesn’t work long-term, and the bigger thing that people are not talking about is how bad it hurts your long-term brand and can literally kill your business.

Have these outlined on a 12 month marketing calendar, execute daily, track, follow up, and your biggest pain point will shift away from lead generation.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

Be A Bee

I remember when I was a kid, I use to HATE bees. I would kick and scream as I ran away from them. 

At my uncles house one afternoon, he decided to gather some of our cousins to take down the shed. Being a big kid, I was obviously nominated.

As you can imagine, things went GREAT!

We started knocking down the old shed and out came a swarm of bees. We all ran, and most of us had a few stings to make the memory last. 

You see, stories like that are what most people have in their mind when they think of bees. 

But in business and in life, you need to be a bee. 

Bees are awesome. 

Think about it...

What do they do all day long?

They hum along, pollinating, giving, giving, and giving some more. 

Did you know 1/3 of our fruits and vegetables are pollinated by bees?

165 out of the 168 hours in a week bees are givers. They give, they give, and they give. 

And guess what? They expect nothing in return. 

But every once in awhile they have to sting you. 

And you probably broke the rules and pissed them off. 

Be a bee.

Give. Give some more. Give some more. And most importantly, expect nothing in return. 

But when the time comes, you're going to have to sting. 

That could be putting your foot down in a relationship. 

That could be asking for something.

That could be leaving a job that you're miserable at. 

The point is, most people see a bee as a stinger. But in reality, they give more in most days than most people give in their life. AND, they expect nothing in return. 

Give until you can't give any more. 

Give someone a helping hand. 

Call up a friend and chat with them.

Give away valuable content. 

Give someone your time. 

And expect nothing in return. 

But when the time comes, don't be afraid to sting. 

How are you going to give more?

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

Don't Be All Things To All People...

Maybe this is a life lesson too, but in business, you can't be all things to all people. 

As much as we want to help everyone, if you want to make a stamp on this world, make an impact, you have to hone in on who you're going to help.

Being all things to all people will not only water down your message, but it will spread your efforts thin. 

You'll end up mediocre at a lot and great at nothing.  

The $10 buffet restaurant talks to certain people compared to the steakhouse that charges $90 a steak. 

The iPhone has never been advertised as cheap, yet it has a cult-like following, compared to the "smartphone" you get for free if you sign a contract.

The environment you need to create at a boutique clothing store compared to a department store is completely different. 

What's the difference between the $2 gallon of ice cream and the $8 scoop of hand-churned locally made ice cream?

A story. 

A message. 

A brand. 

People. 

Not right or wrong, just different. 

The restaurant that has Italian, American and Chinese options all on a giant menu is sitting vacant in 2019 while the specialty restaurant that has just five dishes has lines out the door.

Focusing on one market and one product allows you to dump all your efforts into it and become the best in the world at it. 

That's what's needed to make an impact. 

Plus, you'll sleep better at night not thinking you have to have a solution for every Tom, Dick and Harry. 

1% Better.

Which One Are You?

We talk a lot about mindset.

But what does that actually mean?

For those who are readers, I highly recommend the book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck.

Basically the book talks about how there are two mindsets; the fixed and growth mindset.

The Fixed Mindset

A fixed mindset is one where you believe your talents and abilities cannot be improved by any means,  that you are born with what you have and no part of you can be improved.

A person with a fixed mindset believes challenges and less than ideal outcomes are negative.

A person with a fixed mindset attaches themselves to outcomes, e.g You haven’t done $500,000 in business, and the mindset that you’ll never hit that milestone.

A person with a fixed mindset would believe they can’t do it, ever.

It’s important for you to understand that if you have a fixed mindset, its not your fault. It’s likely something from your past that molded your thinking without you knowing.

The Growth Mindset

A growth mindset is where you believe that all aspects of your life can be improved through embracing discomfort, hard work and persistence.

A person with a growth mindset does not attach themselves to outcomes, e.g You haven’t made $500,000 yet, but with the right coaching, the right business skills, you can do whatever you want.

A person with a growth mindset would say, welp I’ve been expecting a different results without changing anything, so why should I get mad?

How You Can Transition From a Fixed to Growth Mindset

It’s important for you to understand that you were born with a growth mindset…or otherwise you would have never learned to walk.

There are two important points I want you to know:

  1. You are not stuck with a fixed mindset

  2. Even if you have mostly a growth mindset, from time to time you will slip into the fixed way of thinking…this is normal and its okay.

Catch yourself!

Replace I can’t, with I can I just need to work at it. 

Trust me, you can do 99% of things you would ever want to do.

This is not to say you will be close to good at them without any practice but you can do whatever it is to some extent.

When you find yourself setting limitations or letting others set your limitations, snap out of it.

Remember, YOU are the greatest miracle…no computer or anything else has as much ability as you have.

Just realize to do those things you need to progress small steps forward each day and that it will be an adventure; unexpected things will happen, you will have to alter or maybe even change your entire course, there will be highs and lows – embrace it all.

And if you do something and it doesn’t workout the way you wanted it to, feel good about yourself because you just over came a challenge.

Next, look at it, whether it’s something new or a recent failure and think, what did I learn from this?

Remember that failure is an event, not a person. Zig Ziglar

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

Friction In Business...

A good operating system for a business removes as much friction as possible.

Let’s take a look at the typical journey.

How clear is your marketing?

Is there any friction in the messaging?

Is it really smooth, clear, and consistent?

We need systems and processes to make that happen.

How about the ability to inquire or purchase for your services?

Is it quick, easy, and slick?

In today’s fast-paced world if there is any friction in the buying process the consumer is most likely going to move on to something faster, easier, and more convenient.

As the journey continues, how does the onboarding feel?

Is it smooth and easy for the client?

Do they get handouts or videos so they remember everything you told them?

Which platform do they receive information on like scheduling updates, announcements, etc?

If there is any friction during this process it could leave the client confused and thus, a less than stellar initial first impression of your business, decreasing the likelihood that they’ll stick around.

What about the experience in general?

Does it flow smoothly?

If you’re a brick and mortar business, it starts from the moment they walk in the door.

Is it clear and clean as to where they go and where they check-in?

How is the design of the space?

Friction in your design could mean clients/customers walking around not knowing where things are, not optimizing the space you have, or not putting things in the proper spot as to maximize the traffic flow of the facility.

All of this needs to be documented and clearly outlined.

What about the team?

Any friction on the team?

Is the on-boarding process clear?

Do they know what’s expected of them?

Do they know what the vision of the company is, what the goals are for this quarter, etc?

Spend time looking at how you can reduce friction here as this will strengthen the team, allow them to deliver a better experience, and give you more freedom.

Finally, what about friction in your own personal life?

How do you manage your time?

What’s your morning routine and self-care rituals?

Are you spending the time doing the things that are going to move you and business forward the most?

It’s all about removing friction.

When we hear the word “system” it can often mean multiple things.

I think of them as documentation of every single process in your business so that you can clearly communicate them to your team and to your clients, reduce friction and make things run smoother, and thus, allow you to grow more, live with a little less stress, and have some more freedom.

How can you reduce friction in your business?

Got A Problem?

If you've been in business for more than a week, you know the road is not smooth. 

It's bumpy as heck. 

You’ve seen those graphics online of the “day in the life of an entrepreneur”

It goes something like this…

9:00am: “Today is going to be a great day!”

11:00am: “How the heck am I going to do this?”

1:00pm: “Did I really sign up for this?”

3:00pm: “Wow, that’s awesome!”

5:00pm: “Normal people are punching out and I’m still going”

That's why I preach slow and steady consistency, not beating yourself up, because, in the long-term, it's more about just showing up consistently. 

1% Better.

How can I do one thing today that’s going to move my business forward?

Ok, we get that. 

But, your business is growing, you’re making progress, and you still have "problems."

And that's the problem!

We think that once we get going, once we hit a certain goal, once we accomplish something all our problems go away. 

In his book "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*CK", Mark Manson talks about how life is all about trading problems for better problems, but it's also an understanding that we'll always have problems. 

Let's think about it...

When you first start a business you're scared, you're intimidated, and you're not sure what the heck you’re doing…

That's a problem that you're looking to solve. 

So, let's assume things go great, you get into a routine, find a few customers, and things are starting to grow…

And guess what?

A new problem emerges...

You now have to balance work and life…

“Who and what do I say no to at home or at work in order to keep this thing going?”

Still a problem, but a better problem. 

Let's keep rolling...

You're crushing it, you've found balance in your schedule and you're starting to grow…

Another problem emerges.

How do I manage this team?

How do I find better help?

How do I learn social media marketing?

etc, etc, etc…

Again, a better problem, but still a problem. 

The problems I solve today running a business with nine employees, hundreds of clients, a consulting business, a kid, a wife, and all the other factors that play into it are completely different (and better) than the problems I had to solve eight years ago when it was a one-man operation and I just started dating Megan. 

But they’re still problems...

This is a great reminder, and something Mark preaches in his book, that we will never eliminate problems in our life…or business. If you set yourself up with that expectation you're going to fail. 

The goal is that you continue to grow and develop, in all aspects of life, so that you trade bad problems for better problems. 

But they'll always be problems....

And that's ok. 

That's what makes it fun. 

We are internally motivated to solve problems. 

As much as we dream of everything being perfect and going smoothly 110% of the time, we crave the ability to fix stuff that's broken, we crave problems. 

We just hope we're trading good problems for great problems. 

I'll end with my favorite quote from the book...

"There is a simple realization from which all personal improvement and growth emerges. This is the realization that we, individually, are responsible for everything in our lives, no matter the external circumstances. We don’t always control what happens to us. But we always control how we interpret what happens to us, as well as how we respond...

Life is essentially an endless series of problems. The solution to one problem is merely the creation of another....

Don’t hope for a life without problems. There’s no such thing. Instead, hope for a life full of good problems."

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

5 Steps To Positive Change...

When we look to change something what typically happens?

We complain about it, fill our mind with negative beliefs, and instill fear that we’ll never be able to do it.

However, deep down, we know that’s simple not true.

We can do anything we want if we’re willing to put in the work, change our behaviors, and change.

If you're looking to improve or change something here are the five steps you can follow for ultimate success. 

Really what we’re talking about where is behavior change.

It doesn’t matter if you’re trying to lose 20lbs, save more money, or grow your business.

Currently, if you’re not where you want to be at in something, it is because of the behaviors and beliefs that you have done, or currently do.

But, the good news?

You can change anything you don’t like.

Here are the five steps…

1. Recognize The Need to Change: I've always said that being self-aware is one of highest skills we can learn as humans. Being self-aware of what motivates us, how we come across to people, and just generally being aware of how everything effects us and how we effect others. That being said, if you're looking to change you first need to recognize that you need to change. 

2. What Does Success Look Like: If you could wave a magic wand and you're living the perfect version of what you want to change is, what does that look like. Write down a clear picture of what success looks like so that you have a visual target to go after. 

3. The One Thing: What is one thing you can do today to start moving towards that picture you painted above. The biggest hurdle people face in change is they try to conquer it all, get overwhelmed, and end up not doing anything to help them progress closer to what success looks like to them. The one thing. It could be filling out an inquiry form on a gym's website, it could be setting up the bank account that you're going to automatically transfer savings to, it could be hiring that coach, or it could be going into your schedule and blocking off from 6 pm on so that you can be home with your family. The one thing is important not because of what it is, it's going to be tied to your goal, it's important because it's only one thing. 

4. Set Mini Milestones: Depending on what you're trying to change, it's going to be a long-term journey filled with ups and downs. In order to keep you motivated and on track it's important to break it down to mini milestones. For example, on your journey of losing 50lbs, maybe it's showing up at the gym 10x this month. For your journey of growing your business, maybe it’s one new customer this week.

5. Show up daily: 1% Better. I have yet to find anyone that shows up daily and does not see progress in whatever they're working on changing and improving. It doesn't matter if it's fitness, business, or life, it's about showing up daily and doing the best you can with the cards you're dealt that day. There is no magic pill, there is no shortcut, there is no secret, it's just showing up consistently, day after day, month after month, year after year. That's the secret. 

Change is hard. 

Follow these five steps and hopefully, it gives you some guidance as you go through the journey. 

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling


The 1% Better Test...

This time of year is always tough.

People are busy with summer BBQ's, vacations, and the weather is good.

Depending on your business, this may be a very quiet time of year, or the craziest stretch of the year.

You don't need to be perfect, but don't give up, we always need to be carving out time to improve our business, to work “on” our business not “in” our business.

Don't beat yourself up, don't give up, just keep doing what you can do, and give it whatever your best is that day.

Doing nothing, throwing in the towel, is the worst thing you can do.

This time of year is usually the biggest test of 1% Better...

You read it every day.

It’s my personal motto and how I live my life and run my businesses.

1% Better.

But what does it actually mean?

I think it starts with why.

Why does the Spurling Community exist?

The Spurling Community exists to impact and empower lives through inspiring positive change in people, cultivating relationships in our community, and getting 1% Better every day.

That's our mission.

That's why we do what we do every day.

Whether it’s in personal development and fitness, or in business development helping people improve the health or their organization.

In business you get thrown lines like

"Get 10 new customers in the next 10 days"

"Take this course and we’ll double your revenue in just 30 days."

"And you know what happens...

You try it, maybe you see results for a week or two, maybe a month, and then you realize that it’s a scam and a quick-fix and it ends up hurting your business in the long-term.

Am I right?

1% better is the opposite approach.

It's about slowly chipping away at things.

Realizing this is a journey and a marathon, not a sprint.

There is no end. There is no destination. There is no break or pause.

It's falling in love with the process.

1% better every day.

Just a little better than yesterday.

It could be that you got one more client…

It could be that you improved one process in your business…

Or maybe it’s one hour spent training a new employee…

One more hour on marketing.

It's small behavioral changes that don't seem like much but have both a compounding and sustainable effect.

Not only do you get better results in the long-term, the results you do get, you actually keep!

During a time when you feel overwhelmed by all the things that you could improve upon, 1% better gets you to take action, and start feeling and performing better right away.

Just take one action.

We know that motivation is not something that you just wake up with.

Motivation comes from action.

You start doing something small, the momentum builds, and motivation is built through the action.

That one thing, 1%, could be the thing that kick-starts everything.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

Take note..

Take a note…

Put the pen down for two seconds…

Take a note.

That was all I did yesterday as we interviewed Melissa Boyd for our podcast, The One Percent Better Show.

The episode comes out on Thursday and it’s filled with some awesome strategies for meditation and overall spiritual wellness.

However, there was one line that stuck out to me that I just had to share before Thursday and it deserves its own lesson.

“Give from your abundance, not from your reserve.”

Smack.

That’s what I literally felt across my face as she said that.

How many of you, like me, are probably giving from your reserve?

I’ve talked about this concept in the past, but I just loved how that was phrased.

We need to take care of ourselves first.

We need to make sure our physical, emotional, and spiritual tanks are full first, and then give from the abundance, give from the extra, not the last couple drops.

How many of you are go, go , go all day long, depleting your tank, only to walk into a house and family that needs your attention?

You’re giving from your reserve.

The tank is empty and you’re trying to spread the last few drops.

I don’t know about you, but my mind goes to a car and a fuel tank analogy.

We need to “fill our tank” first.

Then, if there’s gas left over that can’t fit in our tank we can share it with others.

Instead, how we typically approach things is empty the tank all day long, and then try to give to others.

We have to be at our best in order to give our best.

Ok, so how do we fix this?

For me, I would say step one is always self-awareness.

Be self aware enough that you are actually pulling from your reserve.

Step two, find things that “fill you tank.”

For me, this is things like meditating, reading in the morning, exercise, and quiet time outside with a pen and a notebook.

The more I do of those things, the more energized I am, the more abundance I have for others, whether that’s my family, my team, or my clients.

So your goal today…

Identify what fills your tank and do more of that so that you can give from your abundance, not your reserve.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling


No Complaining

The team and I are wrapping up our quarterly book.

Each quarter we pick one book to all read at the same time and then set a meeting to review and talk about how we’re going to implement some of the key takeaways into our business or personal lives.

This quarters book was called “The No Complaining Rule.”

It was a super short read, told in story format, so it was nice and quick.

The basic premise of the book is to implement a “No Complaining Rule” within your personal life and/or your work life.

Easier said than done, huh?

It’s amazing how much “mindless complaining” we do as humans.

We complain when it’s hot…we complain when it’s cold.

We complain when we’re busy…we complain when we’re bored.

We complain about traffic…we complain when someones driving fast.

You get it.

We read this book to audit ourselves, but to also help others remove some of the negativity they fill their lives with.

Today, I wanted to share with you three “No Complaining” tools and challenge you to see how you can fit them into your personal life, home life, or work life.

1. The But—> Positive Technique: This simple strategy helps you turn your complaints into positive thoughts, solutions, and actions. IT works like this. When you realize you are comparing, you simple add the word but and then a positive thought or action. Example:

“I don’t like driving to work for an hour but I’m thankful I can drive and that I have a job.”

“I don’t like that I’m out of shape but I love feeling great so I’mg going to focus on exercise and eating right.”

2. Focus on “Get To” instead of “Have To.” This was a big one, and I have written on this before. Too often we complain and focus on what we have to do. We say things like “I have to go to work.” “I have to drive here.” Instead, shift your perspective and realize it’s not about having to do anything. You get to do things. You get to live this life. You get to go to work while so many are unemployed. You get to drive in traffic while so many don’t even have a car or are too sick to travel. Focus on what you get to do. Focus on feeling blessed instead of stressed. Focus on gratitude.

3. Turn complaints into solutions. The goal is not to eliminate all complaining. The intent is to eliminate the kind of mindless complaining that doesn’t serve a greater purpose and allow complaining that is justified and worthwhile. Mindless complaining is negative, justified complaining is positive. The difference is intent. With mindless complaining, you are mindlessly focusing on problems; however, with justified complaining you identify a problem and the complaint moves you toward a solution. For every complaint represents an opportunity to turn a negative into a positive.

I like that the tools and book overall didn’t just have this “tough guy” mentality that you can never complain, because the title certainly gives that feeling.

However, instead, it drove home the point that we quite often complain mindlessly, and instead need to provide a solution if we’re going to complain.

Overall a lot of lessons you can hopefully apply to your personal life or work life.

I hope it helped.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling


Your Operating System...

How are you viewing this right now?

It’s on a device (phone, tablet, computer, etc) that has operating systems running in the background, right?

Those operating systems are crucial for your device to run, and as a customer, you hopefully don’t even know it’s going on, you just know that your device runs smoothly.

What is your business operating system?

No, I’m not talking about the softwares you use (an example of detail most people spend far too much time on that doesn’t make that much of a difference), I’m talking about your overall business operating system.

A business operating system is a machine behind your business.

However, you have to create it.

It takes time, just like any machine.

We’re constantly tweaking the “machine” and messing with ways to make it run more efficient, faster, smoother, etc.

In a service-based business, It’s built on three pillars

What you “title” these three pillars is not important, but the premise is the same.

-Marketing & Sales
-Operations & Customer Experience
-HR & Team Development

Under each pillar, we need a series of systems in place.

Together these systems are what keep each pillar running smoothly.

When all three pillars are running smoothly, we have a strong and efficient operating system.

*An important note: When some people hear the word “system” they think we’re removing the “personal” out of the business. Here’s a good line I always try to remind myself of…

“Automate the process, not the relationship.”

In a service-based business, the people behind your business are your biggest asset.

You need to give them guidelines and procedures to follow, but at the end of the day, your goal is not to automate the relationship so you need to allow them to bring their personality, allow them to make smart choices, and hopefully, you have trust in them because you hired them.

So, back to the three pillars.

1. Marketing & Sales

This is where you have all your calendars and checklists for any of your marketing.

Your 12-month marketing calendar outlined…

Your sales process outlined so you can repeat it and track close rate…

etc, etc…

2. Operations & Customer Service

This is probably the biggest pillar.

This pillar holds all your systems for operations and the customer experience of your business.

This includes things like:

Customer Journey (outline everything that needs to happen from start to finish when a customer starts with you)

Lead Tracking

Follow up scripts

Cleaning checklists

Opening/Closing checklists

Facility Maintenance checklists

etc, etc, etc

3. HR & Team Development

As I mentioned earlier, if you run a service business your people are the most important asset to your business.

Yet we often just leave it up to luck once we hire them.

This pillar includes things like:

Hiring & Onboarding Checklists

Weekly Reviews (5-15 Reports)

Staff Development Calendar (a calendar of when they get continuing education, etc)

Meeting Flows (holding meetings to keep them accountable, check-in, etc)

Big picture things: Quarterly goals, annual goals, the business vision, etc

I like to think of these three pillars as a 3-legged stool.

Without one of them, the stool will tip over, just like your business.

The stronger we make each “leg” or pillar the more the stool can support (more team members, more customers, etc).

However, what often happens is we add more customer and more team members to a broken operating system or a broken stool, and that’s when it crumbles.

Work on your operating system.

Just like anything else, it takes time and energy, but by making your operating system as efficient as possible you automate the process and put the team in the best position to create awesome relationships with your customers.

Equally important, it allows you to spend more time on the things that you want to spend time on, whether that’s more personal time or more time on areas in the business you enjoy more.

Spend some time this year fine-tuning your operating system and it will launch you and your business light years ahead.

1% Better,

Doug Spurling

A Coach?

It’s been a few years since I ran a training session at the gym, but when people ask what I do, I still call myself a coach.

At the gym, we have an incredible team, and we’ll never call them trainers, we call them coaches.

I spend my days now coaching other business owners and leading the team, and they spend it coaching clients to change their lives.

But do you know the origin of coaches, and why we call ourselves coaches?

It has nothing to do with sport or fitness.

The word 'coach' actually comes from the 15th century. 

In Hungary, they built wagons that would take people and supplies from one destination to another, and they called them coaches. 

That's why you now hear things called stagecoaches, motor coaches, etc.

A coach is someone that guides the journey, taking someone from where they are to where they want to be. 

My team happens to do that through the fitness realm….

I focus my team on taking people and organizations from where they want they are to where they want to be.

Coaching is about empowering a person to fully live out their calling.

Coaching is about the agenda of a client.

A coach encourages action and change. 

So, at the gym, my team focuses on being great coaches in the fitness realm. 

I aim to be a great coach to them from a leader and personal development side, and to do the same for other businesses.

But it's still the same thing. 

Encouraging action, encouraging change, and empowering people to live out their fullest potential. 

It's the coaching that makes the difference. 

It's not the tools, it's the coaching.

We all need coaches. 

We all need people, whether it's in fitness, business, or another area in life, that help take us from where we are to where we want to be. 

That’s good coaching.

If you’re struggling in any are of life, or looking to grow in any area, find a good coach.

They might just change your life.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

30 Lessons On My 30th Birthday...

The big 3-0.

It’s supposed to be some milestone, right?

To be honest, I haven’t had a minute to think about it.

If you’re reading this on my actual birthday or the day after, I’m hopefully unplugged at a quaint resort in Coastal Maine with Megan.

Thanks to technology, I can schedule stuff to go out after writing it.

No Kaden, just us.

No phone, no e-mail, no Slack, just us.

I have no regrets, no complaints, but this last year has not been the best, and I think that’s just part of life, but you’ll certainly pick up on that in my lessons.

It’s tough for me to say that, because there were so many good things that happened this last year, like publishing my first book and all of our awesome trips we went on, but it was all a blur.

And if I’ve learned one thing….that is okay.

You don’t have be “on” all the time, and hopefully I can carry that into my 30’s because if not, this candle is going to burn out fast.

More on that in the lessons…

I really do believe we only have good days and great days, just like we only have good years and great years, and this year, it was a good year.

Here’s to hoping 30 is a great year!

I have done these “X Lessons on my X Birthday” posts for the last five years.

I really enjoy them, I don’t look back at previous years, I just start with a blank slate.

However, it’s my way of reflecting on the past year, as I sip on a hot cup of coffee in a quiet house, here’s what’s on my mind…

  1. Find your why. What is your purpose? Why are you here? Are you actually set out to do something, or are you just taking up space and getting in peoples way. This above all else has been my foundation which is why I start with it. I may have bad years, I may feel burnt out, but I can always come back to this. When the days are long and you’re feeling run down, if you have a strong enough “why” none of that matters. I keep this written down, I read it at least once a week, and it keeps the fire burning. If you’re looking to find your “why” (you already know it, you just need to discover it), I highly recommend follow Simon Sinek and his two books “Start with Why” and “Find Your Why”.

  2. Extreme Ownership. Isn’t it funny how these lessons are also titles of my favorite books? Extreme ownership is all about taking 100% responsibility for where you are today. You can spend time blaming others, but what does that really do? I take extreme ownership for where I am at as a person, a father, and a husband. I take extreme ownership for where my businesses are at and where my team is at. When you take that kind of ownership, you can move on quick, and implement change right away.

  3. You’re not invincible. You’re human. As a young kid (I know moms, I’m still young, I get it), you think nothing can stop you, you’re invincible. For the last eight years I’ve been moving 110 miles per hour. Not even physically, just mentally. Growing, growing, and growing the business. More clients, more team members, more everything. I think we’ve done a nice job keeping the quality high, but still. At home, it’s been what’s next, what project can we take on next, planning the next trip before this one is even over, never stopping. It will, and has caught up to me, and if you’re like me, it will catch up to you too. Thirty is going to be about slowing down a little. I’ve busted my ass for everything you see, but I’m not sure I’ve come up to smell the roses.

  4. Take care of between the ears. At the beginning of this year I started going to therapy. I always looked at therapy as something you go to if you have a mental illness. Well, I’m sure there are severities of it all, but I think we’re all a little crazy up there. It has been my weekly outlet for the last couple months, and it’s been a game changer. It’s the one hour in the week where I don’t feel “on.” At home I have to be “on” as a parent and a husband, when I’m around my team I’m “on” as a leader, and when I’m around my clients I am “on” as a community business owner. Just like the lights in your house, if they’re always on, they’ll eventually burn out. I’m working on that through therapy, I continue to work on that, and it’s been a game changer so far.

  5. Everyone wants to be fed, but no one wants to cook. With all of what I said before, I still very strongly believe you have to work for everything you want. You can have anything you want in life if you’re willing to work hard enough for it. The hard truth, most people just don’t want to put in the work that’s required. Once you get past that, once you realize it’s going to be 10x as hard and take you 10x as long as you think it is, then you can start to move towards it. If you want to eat, you have to cook.

  6. Taking risks is part of life. You take a risk every time you get in your car or buckle up in an airplane. But really, everything you do in life has a risk to it. Committing to a job has a risk, committing to a spouse has a risk, investing your money has a risk, and making a hard decision has a risk. I would say from my experience, the risks pay off more often than not. Will they always pay off, no, of course not, but more often than not they do.

  7. Death creates urgency. In October of 2018 I lost my dad. In June of 2010 I lost my mom. Most of you know that. How has their deaths impacted me? Urgency. Make no mistake about it, there is zero coincidence that a year after my mom passing I had an LLC formed to start what is now Spurling Fitness. We all say we would want to live forever, but where is the urgency in that? We would just put everything off until tomorrow, because tomorrow would be guaranteed. Tomorrow is never guaranteed, and for me, I use that as fire to do more, serve more, and be more. Today. Not tomorrow, not next week, but today.

  8. Success has no measurement. What is successful in your eyes? All of you reading this right now have your own version of success in your mind. And I would guarantee that each of us who answer that question has a different answer. Only you can determine what success is. For some success is being a great parent. For some success is a job or an amount of money. For some success is serving others. There is no right, there is no wrong, as long as its your definition of success.

  9. Stop living someone else’s dream. Reread number seven. We’re here for a good time and a short time. Why would you want to live someone else’s life? With todays social media heavy world we only see peoples highlight reels and we tell ourselves “if I could only be like them.” What you don’t see is all the shit going on behind the scenes and how they are just using social media as a distraction for how crappy they actually feel. But now, we tell ourselves “I wish I had what they had.” Too many kids went to a school or took a job that they didn’t want, but their parents told them it would be good for them. Too many people are not doing what they truly love, out of fear, they are living someone else’s dream. Life is too damn short to not be doing something you love.

  10. The art of being present is still by greatest area of opportunity. It’s something that therapy has helped with, it’s something that just being self-aware of it is helping with, but enjoying the present is still a large area of opportunity. I’m sure I’m not alone in this either, always dwelling on the past, always dreaming of the future, but not enjoying the present.

  11. It’s never as much work as you think it is. Do you ever have this big project that just sits over you like black cloud? It seems so daunting, and because of that you don’t spend any time on it. Earlier this year I published my first book. Was it a lot of work? My brain tells me yes, but my gut tells me no. No, it was not. I wrote a chapter (1-3 pages) every morning for a few months. I compiled them on a Google Doc, sent it off to the editor, a few back and fourths, and done. Am I simplifying it? Yes. But was it the hardest thing I ever did in my life? No. We quite often make it up to be more work in our minds than it actually is.

  12. Who is your team? We all need one. Whether you’re a business owner or not, we all need a team. Who are the people that are not competing against you, but working right alongside you. It could be a supportive spouse, it could be some close friends, we all need a team. The largest accomplishments have always been, and will always be, team efforts. Even things like individual sports, they all have teams of people behind the scenes, and without those people, nothing would be possible.

  13. What’s the first “check” you write every single month? Mortgage, utility, student loan? No. Write a check to yourself ever single month. It’s the first “bill” you pay. I’ve been able to create a strong financial security for my family because of this. We often save whatever is left after we pay our bills. Screw that. Even if it’s $5, pay yourself first. Put it in an account that can’t be touched. For more on this, I highly recommend that book “Profit First.”

  14. Good questions get good answers. Slow to speak, quick to listen is a great line I learned from my team member, Kim. I haven’t mastered the slow to speak part yet, but when I do speak I try to ask really good questions. The better the question the better the answer.

  15. The cookie. I got this one from Dean Jackson and I’ve used it a lot lately. If I’m over your house and you tell me “Hey Doug, grab whatever you want in the kitchen.” What are the chances of me doing so? Slim, right? No one wants to be that person. Instead, if you went up to me and said “Here Doug, here’s a cookie, please take one.” Who is going to say no to that? No one. So, next time, be direct. Don’t say “Do you need help?” or “Do you have any questions?” Just start helping, be direct.

  16. Problems. I was talking with a business coaching client yesterday and she was asking “When is this going to stop? I just want it to run smooth without problems.” Umm, sorry, that’s not going to happen. Life is about trading problems for better problems. Eight years ago I was not sure how I was going to pay rent on my lease for the gym, today I’m not always 100% sure how to lead a team of nine individuals. A problem, but a better problem than not being able to keep the lights on. If we approach life with the goal of eliminating all stress, all problems, we’re just going to keep frustrating ourselves. The goal, instead, might be how to trade problems for better problems. For more on this, I highly recommend checking out “The Subtle Art of Not Giving A F*ck” by Mark Manson.

  17. A decade in a day. That’s what you’re doing when you read. Chances are the person that wrote that book is sharing a decade or more of knowledge on those few hundred pages. Is that not worth the $15 on Amazon? 250. With a quick count the other day, that’s how many books are in my office that I’ve read. I didn’t start enjoying reading until a couple years into running Spurling, so probably 2013. That means 250 books over the last ~6 years. That’s just under a book a week. Yes, I read a lot. Yes, you need to make sure what you read gets put into practice. But I do believe it’s one of the best ways to learn.

  18. You’re seeing their best work. My therapist and I talked about this just last week. A lot of times we’re modeling our 24/7 behaviors from someones else’s “best hour.” I am on stage right now as I write this. I’m trying to reflect, but also add value. This is one of “best hours.” What you don’t see is 8pm last night where I can’t move off the couch and I’m stressed out of my mind. You watch a TED talk, you read an article, or you see someone on stage, and you try to model that behavior 24/7. Little did you know, they are just like that for that one glimpse in time. It’s not being fake, it just is reality that we can’t be “on” all the time, and we should not try to model someones “best hour” behavior by trying to live our entire life like that.

  19. The power of writing it down. If you took a few notes when reading this about maybe some small tweaks you want to make, or an action you want to do, you’ll get something out of it. If you just read it, get a little spark of inspiration, and then move on, you’ll be no different tomorrow than you were today. The power of writing things down is incredible. It’s not a guarantee that it will happen, but I do know that it’s a thousand times more likely to happen if you do write it down. I write down everything. My goals, my thoughts, what I like, what I don’t like, everything. The craziest part? I have things I wrote down in 2015 like “five years from now I want to travel to these places, obtain this much financial security, or complete these projects.” And guess what, it’s not 2020 and those are already accomplished. Are there other things that I wrote down that have not happened, or a year later I decided I didn’t want to do anymore? Of course. But more got accomplished, and will continue to get accomplished by writing it down.

  20. Stress is real and we have to manage it. Similar to number 16, just like we can’t eliminate problems, I don’t think we can eliminate stress. In fact, some stress is good. It forces you to be aware, it forces you to make better choices. However, just like anything else, too much of something is never good. We know stress has a real impact on our mind and body. I can always tell when I’m under stress; I don’t sleep as well, I gain weight, I have more anger towards people. We all have our own outlets for stress, mine is reading, writing, meditation, and exercise. Find how you manage your stress.

  21. It never stops. Fitness never stops. Personal development never stops. Time never stops. Being a better father, husband, and leader never stops. In the immediate future, that can be stressful. But if we take time to stop ourselves, the excitement that we can always get better, we can always do more, we can always serve more, that is what keeps me going.

  22. The memories we make our what makes life so great. I have a lot of great memories in my 30 years. I have memories as a kid going on vacation. You know what I don’t remember? Any toy my parents bought me. I have memories from the early years of starting the gym, my dad sleeping on a recliner in the middle of the gym floor during renovations. You know what I don’t remember? What I bought during the first month for equipment. I have memories of holding my moms hand as she took her last breath, memories of holding Kaden as he took his first breath in this world, and memories of all the things we DO, not HAVE, as a community, a team, and a family. Make memories, not a collection of stuff.

  23. Communication. Communicate to your spouse more about how you’re feeling. Communicate to your boss more about what you like and don’t like. Communicate to your friends and family. Communication is how we connect, and we can never communicate enough. Most problems in business, at work, or in our relationships come back to a lack of communication. Talk out loud more. Communicate more.

  24. It can wait. The e-mail can wait. Responding to the text can wait. It can wait. The world will not end if you don’t refresh your Facebook or instagram feed one more time. I write this, and really all of these, as lessons for all of us, myself included. Whatever it is, it can wait.

  25. Success is never straight. This last year I watched Kaden learn how to walk. I watched him learn how to climb the ladder on our swing set. We could all benefit from learning from babies. They don’t try walking, fail, and say “screw it, I’ll just stop trying.” They get up, try again, and again, and again. Anything in life that is worth having is not going to happen on the first try. Fall and get back up. Life is about better iterations of things, over and over again. The best version is never version 1.0.

  26. Your environment matters. Just like a goldfish, you may need to change your water. Way too often we “swim” in toxic environments, whether that’s in a toxic work environment, a toxic relationship, etc. Change your water.

  27. I wish. That’s the last thing I want to say when I’m on my death bed. I wish I went for it. I wish I tried harder. I wish I served more. I wish, I wish, I wish. Stop wishing and start doing. No regrets. I want to say I did everything, I gave it my best, and I left the world a better place.

  28. If often doesn’t matter. We tend to stress, worry, and argue over things that don’t actually matter. I’m not saying it’s not worth fighting over something you believe in, and you can make change, but quite often the things we spend our time stressing over, arguing over, and worrying about are either so small it doesn’t matter, or it doesn’t actually have any direct impact on you.

  29. Freedom & Happiness. I believe that’s what we’re all after. The ability to be happy in the moment. Happy with who we have, with what we have, with who we are. Freedom. Freedom to do what you want when you want. Freedom to make the choices you want to make. Freedom to live life on your time, your agenda, with your goals.

  30. 1% Better. What are you going today. Yesterday is in the past, we can’t change it. Tomorrow is not here yet. What are you going to do today? How are you going to get better today? Give your best effort today. Small wins stacked daily. That’s how I try to live my life, it’s treated me very nicely for the first 30 years, and I don’t plan on changing the approach. Wake up, do the best I can do, and go to bed knowing that I did the best I could with what I had. 1% Better.

Thank you.

That’s really all I have to say.

Thank you.

I try to show up and be the best that I can be everyday.

The best father.

The best husband.

The best leader.

The best member of the community.

Thank you for being a part of it.

1% Better,

Doug Spurling

This Might Be...

This might be the most common trait needed to long-term success.

In business, and in life in general, we know we default to looking for the quick fix.

We also know that it can be very easy to get caught up in the weeds…

Should I advertise on Facebook?

How many times per week should I e-mail?

Which job posting site is best?

I think it’s deeper than that…

I think the most common behavior for long-term success is…

The ability to stick with it, stick with it when things get tough, and stick with it in the long-term.

Seriously, the amount of people that stop something because one thing goes awry is mind boggling.

This is true not just in business, but in life in general.

We often quit something too soon.

The moment we’re ready to quit is usually the moment right before something great is going to happen.

The ability to stick with it, when things are tough, when you don’t feel like it, might be the biggest key to success.

Do you try one marketing campaign and then give up?

Do you hire a team member and then just expect them to be a star, not putting any effort into leading them and training them?

There is always something to get better at, there is always something to celebrate, there is always a win to be had.

In my mind, that’s the most exciting part of business.

The ability to stick with it, when you’re busy, when you don’t feel like it, when you have 10,000 other things going on in life, that might be the biggest key to long-term success.

We’re focused on business here, but apply to this to any area of your life.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

We Can't Stop It...

We can only determine its use. 

Time. 

We can't stop it, we can only determine its use. 

Our most valuable asset. 

We chase things like more money, bigger businesses, and other materialistic things. 

Yet, those are all renewable, we always have the option of more. 

However, we don't put enough scarcity to time. 

The clock is ticking, it never stops, and we only have a finite amount of time left. 

Doesn't the scare you?

It should. 

Imagine if it didn't.

We always here people say...

"I wish I had more time."

"I need more hours in the day."

Well, we know that's never going to happen. 

And two, I'm quite confident that if we had more time we would fill with it with the same things we do now. 

Parkinson's Law. 

In short, work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion.

If you have 40 hours to do something, it will take you 40 hours. 

If you have 50 hours to do that same thing, it will take you 50 hours. 

But I digress.

Last night my wife, Megan, and I sat on the couch looking at pictures of my son, Kaden.

As she cried (men don't cry, right?), we looked at pictures of the day he was born, pictures of each month's milestone, and memories of his first 20 months on this earth.

The last two years have flown by, just like I'm sure every year will, as I always hear from those who have kids.

We can't stop time, but we can determine its use. 

Since Kaden was born, my priorities have shifted.

He is the reason I have to say no to the guy that e-mails me and "just wants to pick my brain for 5 minutes."

He's the reason the reason I write this e-mail at 530am every morning and the reason I work so hard when no one is watching, aiming to create my ideal business. 

Time with Kaden. 

Time. 

We can't stop it, but we can determine its use. 

More time with your loved ones, more time to make an impact, and more time to leave a legacy. 

Remember, your business is just a vehicle that helps you get there. 

If you're spending all your time in the business, and not allowing any time to be with those you love, do things you enjoy, and live life, what's the point. 

Time. 

We can't stop it, but we can determine its use. 

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

Which Path?

Which path do you take?

As humans, we're naturally wired to take that path of least resistance.

In fact, everything is designed to take the path of least resistance.

Whether it's water, electricity, or our brains, it will always default to what is easiest, what is the shortest, quickest, or least challenging way.

Did you know wolves evolved to domesticated dogs because it was easier to scavenge on human trash than track down prey?

The path of least resistance.

So what's the solution?

Awareness is always number one.

Whether it's in business, fitness, or life, we're always going to default to the easiest way of doing it (or not doing it all because that's actually the easiest).

So you have to consciously be aware of that, and continually remind yourself that the path of least resistance is not always the best way.

The people that have success, in any area of life are the ones that don't take the easiest path...

Getting up at 430am is not easy...

Showing up every single day, writing every single day (like this), for over 1000 straight days is not easy...

Thinking that a 14-16 hour work day is normal is not easy...

But I know those three things, amongst others, are my personal competitive advantages.

I simply know, because it's not easy, most people won't do it.

Because it's a harder path to take, they'll be fewer people on the path, and I'll be farther ahead than most on that path.

Now that's a personal example, but you can relate that to any one thing...

Creating a 12 month Marketing Calendar is not easy…

Being a good leader and managing a team is not easy…

Reaching out to grow your networking and expand your product reach is not easy…

And it's why most people won't do it, so if you're looking for results, those are the things you need to do.

Go against the grain, go against what is normal or status quo, and do what others just are not willing to do.

With all that being said...

You can also use this to your advantage.

Since we know our brains are naturally going to go with the path of least resistance, we can do things that play to that.

For example...

Putting the alarm clock across the room so you have to get out of bed to shut it off...

Preparing the night before with your “Big 3” things that are going to move your business forward…

Setting up reminders on your phone about important tasks that need to get done…

You get it.

Just remember, our brains are wired to take the path of least resistance, so you need to use that to your advantage in some circumstances and go against it in others.

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling

Plant Your Failures...

“Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.” -Napoleon Hill

One of my favorite people, and my favorite quotes...Napolean kills it in that quote. 

I talk a lot about mindset because I think everything starts there. 

There is only so much you can control in life and business, but do you know the one thing you can always control?

How you react to something. 

That usually comes back to your mindset about it. 

Failure is a common word in society, especially in the small business space.

"I failed to make enough money."

"I failed to get good employees."

"I failed to reach my goal."

For years, we've been taught that failure is a bad thing. 

Everything we're taught in school, everything we're taught growing up is that failure is a weakness. 

You are in the wrong if you fail. 

But isn't that when we learn the most?

If you plant your failures, they become the seeds to your success. 

One of the largest areas we can all improve upon is to not look at failure as a negative thing, but instead to look at it as a learning lesson, a chance to make a change and do it better next time. 

When we fail, we are proving that we are living life and taking chances. 

You can't be afraid to fail. 

Failure is not a negative thing. 

Albert Einstein once said, "Failure is success in progress."

Imagine how many of his ideas failed?

Without those, without learning from those failures, none of his brilliant ideas would have come to life. 

Whether you failed to hit your revenue goal this month...

Or you failed to get your product on the shelf...

None of that matters. 

Use those as learning lessons, use those as opportunities to make a change, to get better. 

Don't be afraid to fail, because failure is quite often the seeds to our success.

Failure means you're trying. 

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling 

Move The Cheese

A couple years ago we went through a big change.

We basically took our core service model and twisted it 180 degrees. 

I didn't like how the culture was, I didn't like how my coaches were spending their days, and I didn't love the experience they were receiving. 

So I changed it...

That's the short answer. 

The long answer is it was the biggest business decision I've made to date. 

5 years of doing something one way. 

You have a comfortable owner.

You have comfortable staff. 

You have clients who like it, are use to the routine of things, and overall doing great. 

The business was still booming. 

It was not a "numerical" or financial decision. 

We were happy with where we were at. 

It was a culture, community, and coaching decision. 

I just knew things could be better. 

A couple weeks into preparing for the change, one of my clients gave me a book called...

"Who Moved My Cheese."

It's about four mice who's cheese is moved, and their journey and struggles to find new cheese. 

Cheese is an analogy for things we want in life. 

A better business. 

A better relationship. 

A better financial picture. 

The sum of the book breaks down into seven lessons that I think are invaluable in business and in life. 

From big changes to small changes, our cheese is moved every day. 

1. Change Happens: They keep moving the cheese.

Change happens every day.

If you're still doing the same thing you were 10 years ago, you will never grow and evolve. 

The cheese is always moving. 

The way we communicate today is different. 

The way we buy stuff today is different.

And it will different a year from now. 

When I was preparing for these changes at our gym, this was a good reminder that change happens. 

The industry is constantly evolving and finding better ways of doing things. 

This was our way of staying ahead of it. 

2. Anticipate Change: Get ready for the cheese to move

The cheese will move. 

Change will happen. 

New laws will be passed. 

A new competition will come in. 

A staff member will leave. 

Whatever it is in your business or life, you need to anticipate change. 

3. Monitor Change: Smell the cheese often so you know when it's getting old. 

Our cheese was getting old. 

We'd been doing things the same way for 5 years, and it was good, but the cheese was just getting old. 

It was time for some new change. 

I would have never known that if I didn't have my finger on the pulse. 

Monitor your business. 

Know every number, every reason why, and constantly strive for ways to make it better. 

Monitor your life. 

Are you happy?

Do you have who you want and what you want?

Are you living alongside your values?

Smell your cheese. 

4. Adapt to Change Quickly: The quicker you let go of old cheese, the sooner you can enjoy the new cheese. 

So you know you need to change, but your stubborn and you're dragging your feet. 

In today's fast-paced world, while you were dragging your feet, 1000 other people just got shit done. 

Things move too fast today for you to be a slow thinker. 

Once you've monitored the change, and you know it's time, pull the trigger. 

We could have spent months or even years more perfecting our new model, but we followed the approach from another great book...

Ready, Fire, Aim. 

We did some prep work, trained the staff, and got some practice rounds in.

But then it was show time. 

Now we can tweak things as we go, looking to get them a little bit better. 

Perfectionism is the enemy of good. 

Your website will never be perfect. 

Your product will never be perfect. 

Your staff will never be perfect. 

The time will never be perfect.

YOU will never be perfect. 

But that's not an excuse to stand behind the curtain and spend months and years tinkering with it. 

Pull the curtain back for all to see and now you're on stage. 

Now it's go time. 

And at the next "performance" you'll learn from the last one and make it a little bit better. 

But you need to adapt to change quickly. 

5. Change: Move with the cheese. 

Pull the trigger. 

Throw the grenade. 

All 4 previous lessons are wasteful if you never actually change. 

It's go time. 

6. Enjoy the change: savor the new taste of the cheese

After we launched these new changes, I was scared to death. 

I would come home every day complaining to my wife...

"What if the clients all hate it and leave?"

"What if the staff hate it and quit?"

"What if this happens?"

"What if that happens?"

And guess what...

None of that happened. 

The clients are happier.

The staff is happier. 

Overall, it couldn't have gone better. 

Sure, we're monitoring it, making daily small tweaks, but we're also enjoying the new change. 

Enjoying the excitement. 

Enjoying the higher energy. 

Enjoying the better culture. 

Change can be enjoyable. 

7. Be Ready To Change Again and Again: They keep moving the cheese

This will not be the last big change we make. 

I don't know what the next one is, but I'll be anticipating it, and we'll be ready to change again. 

Growth mindset. 

You have to have the mindset of constantly changing, constantly evolving, and never getting complacent. 

The cheese is always moving...

1% Better.