Are you interested in learning about Billionaire Sara Blakely’s simple success strategies that your kids can follow?
Let me be honest first. Will your kids become billionaires by following Sara Blakely’s simple advice? Maybe, or maybe not. Could you settle for this, though?
- They learn to turn defeat or failure into a chance to keep moving forward with enthusiasm and passion.
- They live life as if nothing could stop them or get in their way. Watch out now~
- They learn that obstacles are a normal way of life and not only expect, but welcome it.
- They learn to deal with the emotions of failure.
I still haven’t mastered dealing with my emotions after failure. I become one hot mess! Like in a fetal position, crying with mascara running down my face type of hot mess.
If you could teach your kids to do all of the above, even if they didn’t quite get to Billionaire status, do you think it’ll shift their entire existence and make them a thriving human being in life? And could you settle for just that….?
If you jumped from your chair and screamed, “Hell Yeah…” Well, read on ladies. Coz this post was written for you!
Introducing Sara Blakely
I gotta admit I have a HUGE female crush on Sara Blakely. She’s not only gorgeous, but she’s funny, witty, super successful, fun, and so down to earth. If you don’t have a crush on this girl you will after reading about her. Here are a few things about her you did or didn’t know.
- She is the founder of Spanx. You know… THE Spanx all the celebrities wear under their Hollywood gowns to slim down into that glamorous figure.
- She’s ONLY the 93rd most Powerful Woman in the World.
- Sara was named… “The Youngest Self-Made Female Billionaire”… EVER. Wowza! What a freaking title to have!
- Her past jobs? Selling door to door fax machines, being a stand-up comic, and buckling people into a ride at the Epcot center. Everyone’s gotta start somewhere.
- She tried her hand at being a stand-up comic and didn’t make it. She actually admitted to having stage fright and a fear of speaking.
- She owns 100% of the company. Has no debt and has never taken outside investment for her awesome company.
- She turned a small $5,000 into a whopping ONE BILLION DOLLARS$
- She was a cheerleader AND a debate team champion as a teen. Now you know what activities you need to get your kids into.
- She saw her best friend die at the age of 16 and it made her realize that life is short. Honestly, she could’ve looked at this as a way to fall into alcohol or drugs. Everyone’s got choices in life.
- Her dad’s a Lawyer. She tried to follow in his footsteps and failed the LSAT (exam to enter law school) twice.
- She has a fear of heights, flying, and public speaking! Even bad ass entrepreneurs have fears.
Quick Spanx Success Story
Spanx has become a phenomenon in the re-shaping of woman’s bodies. From Beyonce to Kim K, everyone’s been seen hiding their Spanx underneath that gorgeous figure!
1. “Take the time to learn how to think.” As important as school education is she was smart enough to know that she needed more than just school. That’s when she start listening to motivational and inspirational CDs.
2. She was just 16 when she started listening to Wayne Dyer CD’s and says her whole life became better because of it. This is when she started learning about visualizations and manifestations.
“It actually became a joke in high school, because nobody wanted to ride home with me after a party. They would say,’Sara’s going to make me listen to that crap.’ Literally, people would be, like, ‘Don’t get trapped in Sara’s car. She’ll make you listen to this totally whackadoodle guy named Wayne Dyer.’ Fast forward all these years, and I end up on the cover of Forbes and I got some pretty hilarious texts from some of those friends, saying, ‘Damn. I should have listened to that stuff.”
3. She wanted to change her life and she knew she was good at selling so she decided to manifest something big into her life. This is what she SPECIFICALLY wrote down in her journal:
OK, I want to invent or create a product that I can sell that’s my own and not somebody else’s, and I want it to be something I can sell to millions of people. And I want it to be something that makes people feel good.
4. Once she wrote this down in the journal she was on constant look out for this “opportunity” in her life.
5. The idea came to her while selling fax machines coz she wanted to get rid of panty lines showing through her cream work pants.
6. She cut off the feet area of the panty hose she was wearing and just wore it under her pants.
7. Blakely always admitted that she didn’t invent the pantyhose! Everyone in her High School used to wear panty hose the same way.
8. Once the idea was born, she ran with it. Because she was broke, she hit the school library to patent her own product so she could save $3,000.
9. She kept her idea a secret from her closest friends and family for a year and says it’s the reason Spanx is alive today. The smartie knew the opinions and comments would create doubts about her own idea so she just didn’t allow it.
10. She kept her day job and worked on Spanx on nights and weekends.
11. It took months of knocking on manufacturers doors and getting slammed by them before ONE guy said OK to making Spanx at his factory.
** That ONE guy had daughters who told their dad that they thought Spanx was a freaking Genius idea.
12. She cold called buyers and got a meeting with a Neiman Marcus buyer. Within the first few minutes of the pitch, she could tell she was losing interest… fast. So Sara took the buyer into the restroom and changed into Spanx in front of her to demonstrate the product. Spanx got into 7 Neiman Marcus branches.
13. Being the “out of the box” thinker she is, she sent friends to buy Spanx from each location and mailed them checks for doing her the favor.
14. A year after hitting NM, Oprah put Spanx on her “Oprah’s favorite things.” That’s when things really took off and it Spanx hugged the butts of everyone from Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Alba, to Beyonce.
Sara’s Success Strategies
I’ve had a girl crush on Sara for many years now and have read tons of articles and interviews about her. Everyone has their success mantras and Sara’s no different. Below are her secrets to success.
1. Redefining Failure
Most people think of failure as not achieving a certain goal. Not getting 1st place or even getting anything other than an A on a school report card. By everyone’s definition, failure is usually an outcome other than what they hoped for. Every dinner, Sara’s father used to ask her and her brother what they failed at that day. If they didn’t fail at anything that day her father would actually get disappointed. If Sara said “I tried out for this thing and I failed” her dad would high-five her. It was these moments that helped her redefine what “failure” meant for her. Failure wasn’t the outcome of her actions, it became not trying something. Failure meant that she didn’t take a chance in life. That she didn’t get out of her comfort zone and participate in life.
“So many people don’t take risks for fear of failure. They don’t start the business, they don’t go create the art they want to create, or they don’t go try out to be in the play, or whatever it is, for the fear of failure. And once you redefine that for yourself and realize that failure is just not trying, then life opens up to you in many ways”
2. How to keep going after rejections
Even the awesome Sara Blakely has moments of inferiority, embarrassments, and hitting walls. An exercise her father had her do when things didn’t go her way or when she got embarrassed was to write down the hidden gifts that she had learned in those moments. By doing these exercises she began to notice that every moment had powerful lessons that she could learn from. These exercises taught her that even the crappiest of moments were so powerful that she didn’t want to pass up on any of them! It explains how she could keep going after being rejected so much. She didn’t think of them as rejections, but as opportunities to learn powerful lessons… What a way to reframe bad experiences.
3. Visualization and manifestation
Sara has been very open about using visualizations to manifest success into her life. From intentionally creating Spanx to visualizing about being on The Oprah for 15 years before it happened. She said she could vividly see herself on Oprah’s show, sitting across the couch from Oprah, and having a deep conversation. She said she always wondered “What are we talking about?” Fast forward 15 years, she can now fill in the blanks of that conversation.
4. Getting comfortable with hearing no’s
Sara got a lot of rejection and hear lots of no’s to get where she is. In order to succeed, in anything, she says you have to get comfortable with hearing no’s. And also, don’t take NO for an answer. Keep going.
5. Learn to Sell
Most people hate selling. I hate selling. But in order to succeed in life, it’s a crucial skill we need to teach our kids. It’s not just about going door to door selling knives (Which I’ve done and failed at horribly, btw.). It’s about learning to speak so you enroll the other person into your idea. If you’re sitting in an interview for a job, you’re SELLING yourself. If you’re trying to get a raise, you’re SELLING your abilities. If you’re trying to pitch your business to raise funds, you’re SELLING your idea. If you’re going from factory to factory to pitch your footless pantyhose, you’re SELLING your vision.
6. You don’t have to go in order
Sara is the antithesis of rationality, and I love it. Most people, I’d say about 99%, think that we have to follow a certain order in life. I mean, we’re trained that way. First, you gotta go to Pre-K – Kinder – Elementary – Middle – High School – College. Always a progression. But the truth is you can skip Middle and High school and go straight to College. Hard? Yes. Impossible? Just ask 12-year-old Jeremy Schuler who’s going to Cornell this year. When The Oprah Show called Sara to do a feature of them in a staff meeting in their offices, Sara didn’t even have an office… or a website for that matter!
7. You can figure it out
When Sara started she didn’t know anything about patents, manufacturing, pantyhose business, marketing, product development, distribution, or even business. She said that NOT knowing was one of the best gifts she had. If she had “known” what she had to do and in which order, it would’ve paralyzed her with thoughts of what she should be doing instead of just going for it and figuring it out as she went. If she had known which order she had to do business, she would’ve spent all her precious time designing a website, getting a nice office, designing her pantyhose, and even doing market research instead of marketing the crap out of Spanx.
How to Apply Sara’s Success Strategy For Your Kids
This is what it all comes down to and what matters, applying these strategies for your kids. When you’re applying these strategies keep in mind that what you’re doing is teaching them to
When you’re applying these strategies keep in mind that what you’re doing is teaching them to think differently from other people and form habits and techniques that they’ll use as they grow up, and throughout their life.
Do NOT look at this as a 5-day solution or even a 1-year solution. This is building a foundation for your kids to be thriving human beings.
1. Redefine Failure For Your Family
- Redefine what the word “failure” will mean in your family.
- Repeat the redefinition of failure to your kids constantly.
- … Until they are no longer living at home.
In my family, I tell my kids that failure is an ‘awesome chance,’ because it gives them an opportunity to learn what went wrong and do it better next time.
When my son turned 4 he began getting competitive in running with his classmates. When he lost he would get so bummed out that he’d say, “I’m not gonna run anymore.”
I began reframing that thought by saying “It’s okay to lose and you’re not always going to win. What matters every time is that you tried your best! If you gave it everything you’ve got and you lost, that’s okay. But when you lose it’s actually an awesome thing because you get the chance to practice harder and do it all over again.”
I would repeat something along those lines with every “failure” he thought he encountered. And now when he says something along the lines of losing or failing I ask him:
Me: “Is failing a good thing or bad thing?”
Son: He lights up a bit and says, “It’s a good thing…”
Son: “Because I get to learn and do it better next time.”
[box type=”success” align=”” class=”” width=””]How you redefine failure in your family is YOUR personal choice. There is NO right or wrong. What I define it as doesn’t have to be yours. If mine doesn’t resonate with you, it’s okay… and it’s perfectly normal. Do what’s right and perfect for your family… that’s the only right parenting method.[/box]
Here are some inspirational “failure” quotes from famous people:
- Thomas Edison: “If I find 10,000 ways something won’t work, I haven’t failed. I’m not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward.”
- Michael Jordan: “I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying again.”
- Henry Ford: “Failure is the ONLY opportunity to begin again, only this time more wisely.”
- Napoleon Hill: “Mot great people have attained their greatest success just one step beyond their greatest failure.”
- Oprah: “Failure is another stepping stone to greatness. Failure is a great teacher. If you’re open to it every mistake has a lesson to offer.”
2. Create A Different Thought Process
For normal people, the natural habit after failure is to weep in sorrow about the defeat… and they stay there. For some, it’s such a great loss that they just Quit. Well, not your kid, because they’re gonna learn how to move forward from that mental space of having failed.
To think differently and form a habit, things must be done with repetition. It’s not enough to redefine failure. Your kids have to learn how to move forward after that “failure.”
This is what they’ll do EVERY time they experience an embarrassing moment, defeat, failure, or just plain hit a wall. They’re going to answer 3 simple questions:
1. What went wrong?
2. What did I learn from it?
3. What am I going to do differently next time?
I know… it sounds so dang simple. But our behaviors are dictated by the conversations or thoughts we have in our head! By answering these 3 questions it’ll move their thoughts from failure mode to solution and action mode!
Repeat these 3 questions every time your kid falls into that head space and it’ll just become a part of their DNA.
Let me put it this way. Drive these questions home like you’re teaching them to wipe their ass. Have you seen an adult who doesn’t wipe their ass? It’s in our DNA.
Imagine when your kid is 20 years old trying his first business. He “failed.” But he has his failure DNA. They automatically go to their 3 questions. What went wrong? What did I learn from it? What will I do differently again? Their default “thinking” will be that failure is just an opportunity to learn and keep moving forward.
3. The Law of Attraction:
I’m not gonna go deep into LOA in this post because there’s a lot to it and I know some people think it’s new age bull shit. I’m a believer in it and if you’re a skeptic, here’s basically what it means.
You will attract into your life what you think about constantly.
First, you need to think about what it is that you want. Second, you’ve gotta keep your dream alive by constantly thinking about it. Third, you have to create some sort of plan to get to your dream. Fourth, you’ve gotta bust your ass to realize your dream.
Law of attraction does NOT work if you don’t work. Period. If you’re hungry and you keep thinking “I’m hungry, I’m hungry, I’m hungry” a plate of food won’t appear on your lap. You’ve gotta get your ass up and grab a piece of bread! But first, in order to grab that bread you’ve gotta know you’re hungry.
In order for your kids to get what they want, you need to first teach them how to “envision” what they want by visualizations.
1. Visualize: Kids have a vivid imagination so visualizing won’t be hard. If they want something, start with asking questions to ignite the vision in their head. If it’s a bike ask them what color is it, does it go fast or slow, does it have bright lights, what does it sound like, are they having fun riding it. Surely, they won’t ever get a red bike with pink wings that fly to the moon… but maybe their visualizations become so real that they build space travel vehicles like Elon Musk. Every great invention started with a vision in someone’s mind.
2. Keep their dreams alive: This part will need the parent’s cooperation. And I KNOW it’s hard… trust me. But we have to be conscious and make an effort. A conscious effort is better than nothing.
Don’t way no to every idea your kid has. You have to make sure their hopes stay alive. Their visions don’t die. That you foster their creative thinking skills.
My son told me “Mom, I want to have 10 blue houses because ours is too small.” That sounds silly… sure. But is it entirely impossible? NO. So check yourself when you get the urge to say “that’s silly” or “that’s not possible.” Instead, say “wow… that’s a hell of a goal. I don’t know if you’d want a blue house later but anything’s possible.Just remember, you can have anything you want in life as long as you’re willing to work hard for it. Word harder than anyone you know.”
4. Teach kids to sell
They don’t teach sales skills in school. One of the most valued traits in the adult world and they never touch the topic in traditional schools. You need to teach outside of the school. A great place to start is:
- bizkids.com: This is a great website that teaches everything about the business, entrepreneurship, and sales for kids.
- Here are some books to get started on teaching kids about sales and business:
- Billy sure kid entrepreneur
- Kidpreneurs: Young entrepreneurs with big ideas
- Who moved my cheese? For Kids
- The Making of a Young Entrepreneur: A Kid’s Guide
I urge you to use these strategies! Don’t just read it and think… next week! NO! For your children’s sake, start today. You don’t have to buy anything, do anything special, you just need to start.
Your stories inspire other mothers. I wanna hear about how you’ve redefined failure in your family. Can you share with us by typing in the comments below?