Welcome To The Join Up Dots business coaching podcast With Yuri Elkaim
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Introducing Yuri Elkaim
Yuri Elkaim is today’s guest entrepreneur joining us on the Steve Jobs inspired Join Up Dots business coaching podcast.
He is a man who has been through so much that you would think that a smile wouldn’t be permanently attached to his face.
But attached it is, and it seems to be getting bigger everyday too.
You see this is a guy who found his path to success, fulfilment and enjoyment in such a dark place that it is testament to the truth “The real gift is waiting within”
As he says “For nearly two decades of my early life, there was always something wrong with me.
I was dead tired and suffered from an avalanche of health problems.
Enduring all of this even though I was an athletic and supposedly fit young man.
I tried to ignore it, tucking it all under a rug, but eventually there came a day when I decided enough was enough. And it was all because of this one fateful event…
How The Dots Joined Up With Yuri
It was late one Wednesday night in the middle of March, a few days before my 17th birthday.
I had just returned home from soccer practice, but I was even more of a mess than usual…”
You see he had finally come to the acceptance that there was something wrong within, that not only would change his outward appearance dramatically, but also threaten his life dream of becoming professional footballer forever.
He had found his biggest challenge, one that would take him to the brink, before he managed to step onto the first part of the path, that would lead him to where he is today.
A New York Times best selling author and one of the most trusted health experts in the world, appearing on TV and radio across the world.
So how did he beat the physical issues, when he also had to tackle the mental issues that made his teenage years so difficult too?
And does he feel that this is 100% what he should be doing with his life, or is he simply waking towards the bigger path, waiting patiently for him?
Well lets find out as we bring onto the show to start joining up dots with the one and only Yuri Elkaim.
During the show we discussed such weighty subjects with Yuri Elkaim such as:
Why outsourcing work is such a vital part of gaining huge success in your life. And how you have to be honest which part of your work is not bringing about the greatest reward for your time.
How he remembers always having the entrepreneurial spirit in his life, and would go door to door looking for income opportunities, whether washing cars, or polishing shoes.
Why positioning yourself in a popular arena, but then being unique to yourself and your content delivery is such an amazing way to gain quicker success. Trust your instincts to be different.
Why it is so important to position your products to solve your customers pain points. Gain feedback from your ideal customer and then find a solution for their woes.
How To Connect With Yuri Elkaim
If you enjoyed this episode of Join Up Dots then why not listen to some of our favourite podcast episodes such as Ted Yoder, Sean Swarner or the amazing Alfie Best
Or if you prefer just pop over to our podcast archive for thousands of amazing episodes to choose from.
Audio Transcription Of Yuri Elkaim Interview
When we’re young, we have an amazing positive outlook about how great life is going to be. But somewhere along the line we forget to dream and end up settling join up dots features amazing people who refuse to give up and chose to go after their dreams. This is your blueprint for greatness. So here’s your host live from the back of his garden in the UK David Ralph
David Ralph [0:26]
Yes, hello there. It’s me again, it’s David Ralph, it’s join up dots it’s Episode 537. I don’t know why I’m talking like this. But it’s an enjoyable job to have. And we’ve got a guy on the show today who is going to deliver quite a fascinating towel that has led him to a place where all his thoughts seem to have joined up and without them and we’re going to touch on that later. He may not be in the same position because he’s a man who’s been through so much that you would think that a smile wouldn’t be permanently attached to his face, but attached it is, and it seems to be getting bigger every day to you see, this is a guy who found his path to success, fulfillment and enjoyment in such a dark place. But it’s testament to the truth that the real gift is waiting within, as he says, but nearly two decades of my early life, there was always something wrong with me. I was dead tired and suffered from an avalanche of health problems. I enjoyed all of this. Even though I was an athletic and supposedly fit young man, I tried to ignore it, taking it all under a rug. But eventually there came a day when I decided enough was enough. And it was all because of this one fateful event. It was late one Wednesday night in the middle of March, a few days before my 17th birthday, I just returned home from soccer practice, but I was even more of a mess than usual. You see, he’d finally come to the acceptance that there was something wrong with him. But not only would change his outward appearance dramatically, but also threatened his life dream of becoming a professional footballer forever, he had found his biggest challenge one that would take him to the brink, before he managed to step onto the first part of the path that would lead him to where he is today, a New York Times bestselling author, and one of the most trusted health experts in the world, appearing on TV and radio everywhere. So how did he beat the physical issues when he also had to tackle the mental issues, but made his teenage years so difficult to and does he feel that this is 100%? What he should be doing with his life? Or is he simply walking towards the bigger path waiting patiently for him? Well, let’s find out as we bring on to the show to start join up dots with the one and only Yuri Elkaim.
Yuri Elkaim [2:33]
How are you? I’m doing very good David Thanks for having me.
David Ralph [2:37]
It is a lovely to have you here. You have had a bit of a journey sir from from early days. It’s one of those about pages that obviously I went through that certain about pages you kind of breeze through and you just sort of like get the main points. Yours was like a a movie waiting to be shown, isn’t it?
Yuri Elkaim [2:57]
I guess I mean, I think you know, everybody has that amazing story that, you know, that really shapes who they are. And I think for me, I’ve just realized that I’m like, Listen, like my story is really led me to where I am today. And it’s it’s still unraveling itself really. And I feel that it’s important for me to share that because it really connects with my audience in a way that Listen, I’m I’m only a few steps ahead of you I’m I haven’t figured this thing out. It’s I’ve had my own issues, I’ve had my challenges, I don’t pretend to be perfect. But you know that that those struggles initially, were really part of the journey that would lead me into really learning more about health and really learning about what was happening to my body so that I could take that that knowledge and then help other people overcome their challenges too. So it’s, you know, I don’t know if it’s called, like Dharma or whatever the you know, the the word is, but it’s, you know, it’s something that has really been,
you know, part of part of who I am.
David Ralph [3:54]
And of course, you are a father in I heard a bit of a screaming in the background is part of it? Is that how life operates for you? Are you somebody that is sort of juggling multiple things, being an entrepreneur being a podcast guest, how does your day structure itself that you can make sure that you provide the service to your clients that they deserve?
Yuri Elkaim [4:17]
Yeah, so it’s funny because I have three boys under five and a half right now. And it’s, you know, as you can tell, sometimes it can be crazy. So, as I mentioned, before we started recording, I usually get up at five in the morning, because that’s kind of my magic time, I like waking up early. It allows me to have, you know, two hours to myself where nobody’s awake, and I can just focus on, you know, myself, my meditation, my most important work, and then the kids are up usually at about 7am. So I spend the next two hours with them, walk my oldest son to school. And then I have the next six hours to myself to really focus on my business to focus on what I need to do during the day without the kids. And then by three o’clock, we’re picking them back up. And then it’s basically shut down time. So I like to call it force constraints. Because when you have specific time blocks for you have to be present with them, you can’t really be doing anything else. So, you know, when I was younger, and I didn’t have kids, it was I could work all day long. But it was very unproductive because I was like, well, I’ve got like 12 hours to do this. Yeah, now it’s like I’ve got five or six hours, and there’s no messing around.
David Ralph [5:19]
So it’s the quality of your work better Yuri Elkaim. Because you’re kind of more focused, I am a great believer that Parkinson’s Law, as we say that time tasks expand in the time that we’ve got allowed. And if I compress it, compress it compress it more often than not, the work is still pretty damn good. It’s just I’ve been really focused God, I’ve only got half hour to do this. Do you look at your own work and think, yeah, not a wasted time, lot of wasted time, I can do it in five hours? Or is the quality not as good?
Yuri Elkaim [5:50]
Now the quality is definitely better. And I don’t know if it’s a factor of constraint time, or just maturity in the sense of really understanding what my unique ability is. And so when I was starting off, you know, in, especially my business, I was waste a lot of time doing stuff that other people could be doing for, you know, $10 an hour. Yeah. And you know, as you grow as a leader, you start to understand, like, what is the most valuable use of my time. And that’s really what I really am aware of on a day to day basis, what I’m doing something I’m like, you know, either in my elements or I’m not. So I’m asking myself, is this the best use of my time? Is this really what’s going to move the needle forward? Or is this somebody? Or is this? Is this something that somebody else could do? Can I create a system around this and hand it off to somebody else? So I think it’s probably a bit of a bit of both in terms of like, knowing that I don’t have all day to mess around, let’s focus on what’s most important. And then just a level of maturity over the years, I’ve had, you know, I’ve had my online business for 10 years. So you kind of see you What is your best activity and really just focusing on that.
David Ralph [6:53]
And the dg, obviously, we’re not going to dwell on this too much, because there’s too much in your story to sort of get involved in. But did you find it difficult to start outsourcing? Because when you’re starting building something, you almost get into that mindset that I’m the only one who can send this email, I’m the only one who can do this spreadsheet, and oh, it’s going to be easier for me just doing that, or was it kind of liberating just to throw it out to someone?
Yuri Elkaim [7:18]
It’s, you know, I think it’s still a struggle to some degree, I think every entrepreneur has that level of, you know, we want freedom, but there’s also this element of control, right? You want, you don’t think that anyone can do things as well as you can. And there’s a point where you just have to be very, like, truthful to yourself be like, Listen, I’m really not that good at this, or the difficult one is, is the activities that you’re really good at. But that really don’t give you a lot of zest and juice in your life that somebody else could do. Maybe as good, but at least if you got that off your table, you know, it would just free up a little more energy for you. Right? So I think initially, The trouble was that I thought that everyone was like me, I’m like, why would somebody want to do this task? Right? Why would somebody enjoy running through this process that I would go crazy if I had to do every single day. And that really all changed when I started looking into different personality type testing. So we did, for instance, on our business, we use Colby tests for everyone on our team, which basically gives you an idea of what people are willing and not willing to do. And it’s it’s pretty fixed more or less from the time you’re young to the time you die. And going through that. And then a subsequent series of other tests, it was like, wow, like, there’s a huge difference in the way that my brain operates versus, for instance, my assistants brain, and being able to communicate Ananya, that’s allows you to communicate to those individuals more effectively. And then you’re able to be like, you know, what, they actually really enjoyed these types of things and these types of things. And I don’t like doing these things. So it’s a perfect match. So when you start to realize that some of the things that you can’t stand doing our things that other people love to do, it’s really liberating. And I think, you know, everyone starts off as a solo printer, right, unless you’re raising venture capital, and you have enough money to, to bring on all sorts of different team members. But for the most part, you start off by yourself, you start doing basically everything. And that’s just the way it is right, you have to do that. And I think a good place for people to start is really just reading a list, just taking a sheet of paper on one side, stuff that I love to do. And on the other side stuff that I can’t stand doing that stuff, it just drains my energy, and just read an exhaustive list of on both sides. And you’ll find that the stuff that you don’t like doing is much longer than the stuff you love to do. And so the stuff you don’t like doing essentially becomes a series of job descriptions, right? So for instance, if you don’t like editing, or you don’t like accounting, or you don’t like, you know, whatever it might be, you can use those as Okay, well, I’m looking for something, what do you can do this, this and this, and then creates some type of job description or add, that you can use to find somebody who can do those tasks for you. And when you get that off your plate, and just frees up a lot of mental energy, and it’s really liberating.
David Ralph [10:13]
So I use somebody that’s always had mental energy, even when you were going through your physical difficulties in the sort of early stages as a young man, were you always somebody that had that entrepreneurial spirit going through your mind constantly.
Yuri Elkaim [10:29]
Yeah, pretty much. I mean, I was always defined the rules. I remember, when I was young, I had a baseball and hockey card collection. And I was always trying to sell stuff for more than I purchased it for, you know, I was walking around the neighborhood, going door to door, trying to shine people’s shoes, or wash their cars or cut their lawns. So I had that very self kind of starting type of mindset. And I mean, obviously, I still had jobs growing up, but I realized like I was never want to follow rules properly. One of the biggest challenges for me when I was when I was working as a personal trainer in a big corporate gym, which drove me crazy. My manager would always hounded me for not tucking my shirt in. I’m like, Oh, my God, like, really, this is this is this is the this is my existence right now. And I was like, there’s no way I’m going to live my life. Listen to that kind of stuff, you know. And so those are the little things that, you know, over time creep up in your head, you’re like, Listen, I can’t work for anyone else. I’m a liability to this company, if anything, and to be very honest, I mean, I probably shouldn’t have been there as long as I was. Because I was always looking for loopholes, always looking for ways to kind of break the system and do my own thing. And, and it’s frustrating to have employees like that, right? Because they’re always looking to do their own thing and kind of defy the odds, and they don’t like to follow, you know, the culture or the way things are done. So, I’ve definitely I think it’s a spirit thing. Like it really is like you come into this world, excuse me, with a type of spirit it, I think it’s something that can be learned as well. But I think really, it’s like, I can see to my kids to like, especially my oldest one was five and a half. Same thing. He does, like, he doesn’t like to listen to some degree. He’s always, you know, pushing the status quo. And it’s like, that’s, it’s frustrating sometimes, but I’m like, you know what, that’s great. Because I think that really is going to serve Him in life. And I really want him to, to see that blossom. So it’s about kind of recognizing that and other people as well as maybe your kids and seeing where it can go.
David Ralph [12:29]
I like your son already. Yeah, he’s got that Maverick spirit. Uh, yeah, I’ve got that big time. And even when I was in corporate land, and I used to hire people, I always used to hire people that were kind of nobody else wanted, I used to call my team, like the Dirty Dozen. They were always people about I kind of just generally felt I had some kind of Spark. And more often than not, it was because they would, if I gave him a job, they would try to find the quickest way of doing it. And I always thought that was brilliant. Yeah, that’s all, you know, get the job done by lunchtime, go up down the pub, you know, Job done kind of stuff. So uh, yeah, I agree with you, I was probably not the best employee, because I was always pushing that boundary. Now, obviously, your journey on TV show has started from a very serious point in your life, and you’re probably bored, stupid. We’re talking about this on countless shows and countless TV appearances and stuff. So we won’t dwell on it too much. But it did happen. At possibly the worst time when I was looking at your story. I thought to myself, if I had the issue now, but my hair was dropping out. And I had energy issues as an adult, I think I could have dealt with it a much better than when I was a teenager, and you spend half your time in front of a mirror. trying the best before you go out. You know, appearance is very, very important. But I look at you now. And yes, you were bald man. I can’t imagine you repair. You look perfectly right now for it. Where when he was a younger kid with the kind of curtains, it didn’t look like how you were meant to be? Do you see that yourself now? Do you look at yourself and you’re totally comfortable? Or do you still sort of stroke your head and think Oh, if only
Yuri Elkaim [14:13]
now I’m I completely get it? Yeah, it’s, for me, it’s almost like this is who I’m supposed to look like, in our how I’m supposed to look at it. It’s interesting, because I always I kind of think of it as the universe way of moving me in the right direction. Because when I was in my teens, I was, you know, I was potentially going to get into modeling. And I was very, like very much into my hair and looking in the mirror and just all this ridiculous stuff. Right? And so my brother teases me because he’s like, Oh, yeah, like, he would spend an hour in the bathroom doing his hair. And it’s just so funny, because now none of that stuff really matters. And I mean, for really, for anybody, it doesn’t matter. But it was. It’s funny, because, you know, some people think of me as it’s kind of like wise Buddha like, not that I’m like us spiritual Buddha. But just Yeah, like in terms like wisdom, like, even at that age, I was fairly mature for my age. So when I lost my hair, a lot of people are like, did you freak out like, holy cow, I was like, not really. I mean, I kind of dealt with it fairly well. And I think just I’ve always been a little bit more mature than, you know, maybe other people my age at that time. So I dealt with it fairly well. And I had a really good group of friends who supported me, which was helpful. And to be honest, I think some of my family members, you know, probably freaked out more than I did. So it was interesting and was funny is that when I was able to regrow my hair, my early 20s I actually kept my head shaved, and I was I was actually remember playing soccer in France during my, my pro stint over there. And these the Colombian Serbian bartenders. Oh, yeah. The Yeah, the goalie for France, you know, several years ago. And I was like, not that I really liked that. That uh, Association, because I didn’t really think he was that great of a goalie, but whatever. It was just interesting, because people kind of associated me with with that. And so I almost had that. I was like, well, I’ve been with her hair for so long. I’m like, even if it grows back. It’s just, it’s part of my claim to fame. And so I just, I just, you know, I feel totally comfortable with it. And that’s just the way it is,
David Ralph [16:17]
with your claim to fame is fat, more about your backstory, your appearance, always a combination of everything, you’ve obviously found your sweet spot, you found the thing that was almost kind of given to you. And as we find time and time again, on join up dots we all sort of successful people have gone through trials and tribulations, but it’s kind of given them something that they couldn’t have found otherwise. Where are you most recognized? So you must be recognized because of your appearance? Or because of your knowledge because of your voice? Because of your books? Where do you get sort of more recognition?
Yuri Elkaim [16:52]
Yeah, definitely, it would definitely be, I would say, I don’t know if it’s knowledge slash ability to be real with people. What I do really well as I simplify complexity, so I mean, obviously, I built my business in the health space. And I’ve, for the past, you know, decade have, you know, helped half a million people have more energy, lose weight, improve their health, but at the foundation of all that is really taking the confusing world of health and making it very simple for people to understand. And I think part of that is from my background of having gone through what I went through, obviously going through a lot of schooling to understand the human body and health, and then playing professional soccer. And then working as a strength and conditioning coach for seven years with a lot of elite athletes and pro athletes gives me a very unique perspective that very few people have to be able to kind of like bring it all together in a way that everyday regular people can, can can kind of take from but in a very simple to understand manner. So I think my experience in my knowledge has definitely helped to be very honest. I mean, my appearance, I don’t I don’t really dwell on it too much more than some people think they’re always asking like, what happened your eyebrows, you have cancer. But for people who followed me, they know they know the story. So there’s like the last sheet defend me, when people are like, what’s up? You know, what’s going on? Why don’t have any hair. And so it’s funny to see how your tribe kind of, you know, comes around you to support you in those type of situations. But I think I, I really tried to, to be real with people. And I’m like, Listen, like I don’t, I don’t pretend to be perfect. So I’m very authentic and real and honest. And I think that’s very important, because that’s what people tend to, you know, what we ask our customers, for instance, like what’s the what’s the one big differentiator that that we kind of bring to you. And it’s, it’s really that kind of like that realness and that rawness and that authenticity, on top of, you know, obviously, the knowledge that I’m able to, to empower people with. So I would say those are the big two things.
David Ralph [18:47]
But for the listeners out there, we talked about going on the journey time and time again. And I suppose it’s one of those phrases I don’t really like because it’s kind of overused, but I do understand it as well. And although we’re saying that you think your path, due to the situation you found yourself in, you still had to mentally construct a business around it, you had to use that knowledge base, but so many people will go, who’s going to pay for that? You know, it’s just stuff I know who’s going to do but how did you overcome that? How did you actually settled down and think to yourself? Yeah, okay. I think there’s a solution to a problem. And I’ve actually got that information, I can build this into something.
Yuri Elkaim [19:28]
Yeah, that’s, that’s a really good question. When I started online, I was I was working as a personal trainer, and a nutritionist working one on one with clients. And I got to the point where I was like, this is really tiring. I don’t enjoy working 10 to 14 hours a day. And one of my clients were working out and he’s like, why don’t you put your voice on tape? And I was like, that’s a very interesting idea. Because this is just when the iPod had come out. Yeah. And I was looking at, by that point, I had a website, which was terrible. I really didn’t know what I was doing online for the first couple of but that was, I believe it was the first year in my business online. And I was obviously looking at the marketplace, seeing what other people are putting out there. And it was all ebooks, right, like in the workout space was all ebooks. And I was like, Okay, well, here I am working with my clients. You’re telling me the only other solution they have is to download an E book. And they’re going to print off these pictures and work out. I didn’t really find that inspiring, because I knew that the biggest obstacle holding people back from staying committed and motivated and consistent with their workouts is having to do it all by themselves. So I decided I’m like, What if I were to put my voice on tape, record my my workouts in a way that I would be under headphones. And you could download your virtual trainer, if you will, to have me with you wherever and whenever you want.
David Ralph [20:46]
And what kind of music usually what when we talking about?
Yuri Elkaim [20:48]
This is 2006
David Ralph [20:52]
Oh, quite early then?
Yuri Elkaim [20:53]
yeah. So pretty early on, you know, just after the iPod come out, really. And I was thinking of like this, for me is be very interesting. And I think I was obviously running some ideas back and forth some clients and I’m like, well, would this be a value to you, I’m not around. Like, if I wasn’t here, and you’re working out and grown, would you want to have me under headphones, and a lot of them are like, that’s great idea. So that was kind of the first workout program that I’ve developed now’s basically the the way that we came into the marketplace. If only we know how to market that products back in the day, it would have been more successful. But I think even to this day, all of the workout programs that we’ve created have had that same foundation of me under headphones, never worked out alone. It bridges the gap between having to work out with a trainer, and having to do things all by herself. And so that was what I thought was going to do really well. And it kind of did. But I think I didn’t really I kind of struggled, you know, we didn’t really make any sales for the first year up until the point where I was away in Europe for six weeks. And I remember going through an internet cafe in Paris, and looking at my email, and I saw a notification for a sale. Yeah. And I was like, that was that was a really good feeling. And I didn’t know who this person was. It wasn’t like my mom, right? Oh, somebody in Australia, actually, who purchased the program. And I was like, wow, this is this is this is happening, this is possible. And that’s where there was that that glimmer of hope wherever you go through months of despair, because nothing’s happening. And then boom, out of nowhere. There’s this glimmer of hope. And I was like, wow, this is OK, so the site is actually working, the payment checkout page is actually working, somebody actually trusted me or this program enough to put down our credit card and buy this online. This is awesome. And that was that was a really good feeling. And and I think that really fueled me going forward for a while. And then it’s just a matter of learning how to do things better and more effectively and reach more people. And it was it was pretty cool.
David Ralph [22:48]
If the listeners go back to Episode 531 of the show, there was an actor on there called Josh ribbit. Oh, and he said something very, very profound, which we’ve just basically discussed here. But it doesn’t matter. What you want to be in life, you can be a fitness guru, you could be a clown, you could be a footballer, you could be whatever, you still have to learn the business involved. You need to learn the nuts and bolts of how to operate within that vicinity. And so many people struggle with that at the beginning, you don’t know they have an idea. I have a passion. They know what they want to do. But the sales don’t come in. Because the structure around it is not positioned right by haven’t built up that that connection, that business that people trust.
Yuri Elkaim [23:33]
Yeah, yeah, it’s one of the biggest things that you know, it’s funny, because so in my journey, I’ve had a lot of a lot of success online, in our business in the last, especially in the last five years. And a lot of colleagues in our space have reached out to me and said, No, you know, can I pick your brain? Can you give me some advice and, and I look at what a lot of people do not even online, but just in business in general. And I have a really, I spend most my time to be very honest, on the marketing side of things, because it’s really just for me, marketing is education, your hands, so being able to get a message out to more people in a way that really serves them. And I realized most people have no idea how to build a business and and the challenges that a lot of people, for instance, I’ll just refer to the health space, because that’s right, you know, kind of started, you know, you’re starting off as a trainer, a nutritionist, an expert in some topic, and you’re coming into now a business setting where you have to be essentially the CEO, and COO and Director of Operations and everything else. And it’s a very tough, it’s a tough segue for a lot of people to make, because they know their topic amazingly well. But they don’t necessarily have the chops to build a business, right, they don’t understand the fundamentals of, you know, the marketplace dynamics for choosing your ideal Avatar and getting your messaging done properly, and positioning and crafting an offer. Those are all things you have to learn. And these are all things I’ve really struggled with. And I never really even paid attention to for the first several years of my business. And now, basically, what I do is I have a division to our business called health printer, which teaches other health experts how to bring their business online, and really build a great business that makes a real world difference. Because what I’ve done is I’ve taken my business and I’ve broken it down into systems and processes and frameworks that work across the board doesn’t matter if you’re selling hot dogs online, these are still fundamentals that need to be in place. So going like when I was going through my health challenges, I use that as Okay, I’m going to figure this out. So I can help other people figure their stuff out. And now as I’ve evolved through my business, it’s like well, I’ve, I’ve, you know, we’ve had a great amount of success and influence and impact with my business. Now I’m going to because I love to teach, I’m going to take what I know to be true and what I’ve learned what I continue to do in my business. And I’m going to help and teach and empower other entrepreneurs online in the health space, how to avoid the pitfalls and mistakes and give them the roadmap that I wish I had when I was starting off or even growing my business. And so it’s part of the evolution, right? It’s just you know, so you you, you go through a challenge, you learn how to overcome it. And then I believe that a great way to continue your development is to teach that. And so for me, at least, that’s basically the way that I’ve operated over the past few years. And it’s, it’s been awesome.
David Ralph [26:26]
Well, let’s play some words. Now before we move on to the second part of our conversation. And these are words said by a famous lady, but ties in beautifully to what we’re discussing here. He’s Oprah,
Oprah Winfrey [26:38]
the way through the challenge is to get still and ask yourself, what is the next right move, not think about, Oh, I got all of this stuff. What is the next right move. And then from that space, make the next right move, and the next right move, and not to be overwhelmed by it. Because you know your life, it’s bigger than that one moment, you know, you’re not defined by what somebody says, is a failure for you. Because failure is just there to point you in a different direction.
David Ralph [27:10]
Now, you must have had quite a few times you when you have gone to do something, asked the opinion of others, and they’ve got that’s not gonna work. You know why? Why would you want to do that? Why don’t you just do it this way? That’s what they the popular people are doing? How do you separate yourself from popular, sometimes misguided advice? And do what Oprah say, just do the next right thing for you?
Yuri Elkaim [27:37]
Yeah, that’s it’s a very challenging question to answer because you have to, I, a lot of the best decisions I’ve made in my business have been instinctual. So I feel it in my gut that this is the best thing to do. And you also have to take into consideration the marketplace. So for instance, if you have an amazing idea, but you don’t necessarily know that there’s a demand for it, or your customers just don’t want it, then you may want to put that in the back burner or figure out a way to bring it to marketplace in a way that people will actually want that because I’ve come up with I’ve developed a lot of programs in my years, and a lot of them didn’t sell because I was just like, I have this amazing idea. And nobody wants, nobody cares about it. So you can have a great idea. But you really have to be tuned in to what your marketplace is wanting in terms of where their pain points, what are their desires, how do you position this in a way that is meaningful to them? And, you know, that’s very important. Another thing is to, you know, I think it’s really important to be surrounded by other people who’ve kind of gone down the path you’re on right now. And again, you can ask them for advice you can ask them for, you know, what do you think of this idea. But again, remember, they’re going to be giving their experience back to you. So if they say, hey, was stock gonna work, it didn’t work, because what they’re saying is that it most likely didn’t work for them. So you can definitely come up with, you know, if you’ve got a great idea, and this is going to help everyone, you can force it into the marketplace, I try to get a round peg into a square hole. Or you can do your research, get a feel for the marketplace, spend time face to face with your customers engage with them online, know what their deepest pain points or their deepest fears or other desires are, as you have a really good understanding of what it is that they want. And then with that, use that as the fuel to really come up with your ideas. And then you’ll have a much better sense instinctual, Lee, that, yes, this is something that will work, this is something people want. And I think that’s going to set us that that saves a lot of frustration and time when you’re trying to think of Okay, I’ve got this amazing idea, and you put it to market and then it doesn’t sell or doesn’t really serve the people you want to serve. I think it’s important to be connected to the marketplace, listen to the people you want to serve, and then use that to build a tribe. Yes.
David Ralph [30:06]
Now what you’re saying I agree with you totally. But I would also say that what you’re saying is a couple of years down the line. What about the the wannabe premier the person who’s listening to this podcast or in a cubicle, they’re going to a job that I don’t like and I think I want to start this business, it’s very difficult to find their tribe at the beginning, it’s very difficult to get that kind of feedback, or is it? Would you say that it doesn’t matter what position you are in? You can still Canvas opinion and get that market research?
Yuri Elkaim [30:37]
Yeah, absolutely. I mean, with the internet, now you can it’s really a matter of okay defining who is it that I want to serve who who do I want to be a hero to. And so let’s just say it’s menopausal women who are recently divorced as an example, you can find those women online like you can you can find groups on Reddit, you can find groups on Facebook, you can embed yourself in that culture, not a sense of like, you don’t necessarily have to contribute to it. But you can just observe the discussions that they’re having. You can look at the verbiage the what the language that they’re using, the words that they’re using. And it’s absolutely brilliant Intel, because people you don’t need to spend 10s of thousands of dollars for some market research firm to do anything. Because a lot of that data is for the you know, as far as I’m concerned, really irrelevant compared to what you can get from speaking with people in that specific to that narrow target market that you want to really work with. You could also go to Amazon and look at book reviews from books that have sold, for instance, to your ideal demographic, and you can find out what it is what is it that people hate about this book? Why do they give me a one star? Why do they even have five stars. And so you start to really tap into the language patterns of your potential marketplace. And, you know, also coming back from, I think, where a lot of health experts have an advantage for instances, if you’re a clinical practitioner, and you’re working with patients in person, all of your raw material is there, you’re dealing with people every single day, who you will eventually serve online. And you’re talking face to face with them. It’s I mean, it’s amazing market research right there. If you’re somebody who’s in a cubicle, who doesn’t have that luxury, then it’s really a matter of like, Okay, well, who, who is it that I want to serve? Like, who do I want to really help out? And how can I be, you know, considered as trusted experts to those people? And then, you know, it’s a combination of figuring out what they want, as well as really developing or sharpening your thoughts really become the person who can help them.
David Ralph [32:43]
When you look back at your history Up to now, was it? Was it a given that you were going to go into health? Because you could have gone into helping teenagers with health problems? You could have gone into helping footballers that are exhausted, you could have gone so of any niche? How did you decide that you were going to go the way that you have,
Yuri Elkaim [33:06]
um, it was actually really haphazard and not to be honest, I don’t even think it was a decision. I think it would have made my life a little bit easier. I hadn’t thought about this stuff way back in the day. I, I’ve always wanted to impact millions of people. And for whatever reason, that led me to just stay very broad with the people that I want to serve. So really, you know, our our target market is really the health hobbyist, like somebody who enjoys being healthy, for the sake of being healthy, that they enjoy exercising not because they’re trying to burn off last night’s dinner, but because they just enjoy exercise, they enjoy eating without all the fanatical diet rules, but obviously keeping in mind that what they’re eating is good for them. So we consider them look, this health hobbyist, and it doesn’t really matter if they’re 30, or 65, or anywhere in between. And this is something that we recently defined maybe two years ago, right? So up until that point, I was just like, Hey, we have programs, you know, awesome, there you go. But now we’re really using that that type of messaging and the positioning of our brand. And to really appeal more to that psychographic of that of that health hobbyist. And that’s just because those are the people that we want to work with. Because working with and there’s nothing wrong with anyone really, but working with, you know, older people who have all sorts of health problems is very draining, especially on your customer support team. When you’re getting pages and pages worth in like one email of somebody complaining about other health issues. It’s like, Listen, we’re not here to diagnose or treats. I mean, you have to go see your doctor for that. So you know, we made a bit of a pivot to say, listen, we want to serve people who are actively engaged, and being healthy as opposed to be like relying on the medical profession to take care of them. And that was just something that we you know, took a long time to really just really Hey, listen, why do we define who we want to serve? And, you know, for us, it’s just, it’s just a levy there lot of the stress of dealing with the wrong customers. And debt. It’s a really important kind of pivot point or a lot of an important starting point for really anyone to think about. So I don’t I don’t know if that answers the question, but they’re just sorry. No,
David Ralph [35:14]
yeah, he does. He answers my question. But it also leads me to so many other questions, because what we see time and time again discussed is I think it’s, as I say, if you market to all folk, you go broke, if you market to niche, you get rich or something like that. And you’ve got a very broad demographic, does that make it more difficult to make the right business decisions? I would imagine it does, doesn’t it?
Yuri Elkaim [35:39]
Well, it I mean, that’s, I think within any situation, there’s the there’s the Yin and Yang, there’s the catch 22 there’s the double edged sword, because going broad allows us we have a very segmented business, we have a lot of different interests within our audience. And so that allows us to come up with a variety of different programs and solutions that, you know, can appease certain elements of those. But what we’ve also found is that even though it’s fairly segmented and fairly broad, there’s there’s commonalities with a lot of a lot of the people that we serve. So for instance, our target market has really ended up becoming women 45 to 60, who are you know, Perrier, menopause are perimenopausal or menopausal, trying to kind of recapture the feelings or the body they had about 10 years ago. And they’ve they’ve just they tried everything, and really nothing’s worked. They don’t understand how their body is not responding the way it used to. They’re dealing with cravings that for whatever reason, whether it’s emotional, or life stage or hormonal, are holding them back from a lot of the things they want to do. And really feeling control of their diet and their and their health. And they’re trying to figure out why their body is holding on to this excess weight. So this is just like, this is something that we’ve just noticed, from a lot of testimonials from a lot of discussions in our Facebook groups. There’s this common thread. And sure there are a lot of men on our list who have no have no business with that. But as the core of our audience, we know that if we come up with something that’s going to help them deal with cravings, or help them with something that’s going to deal with their energy or their hormones, generally, those are going to be big wins versus coming up with. Like, for instance, we have a lot of a number of exercise programs that are pretty intense. And I developed them several years ago with kind of the athletic guy in mind. And those don’t do as well with our list because our list is like well, this is way beyond where I am. And so it’s just, yeah, that’s just the way it’s gone. And I think, how do we got niche? Like how do we like I love working with athletes, like if I’m going to work in person with somebody, it has to be an athlete, because they’re the best clients to work with. And I just decided to, you know, when I came online, I was like, I could have just worked with, you know, soccer players. So if I wanted to, and it’s funny, because actually going through school, I wanted to become a sport med doctor. And then these, sorry, I wanted to play pro soccer, then become a sport med doctor for a pro soccer team. And I’m happy that that didn’t happen. But again, I could have it was really a, it could have been more of a clear decision, when I started the online business to say, Listen, I’m only going to serve soccer players who are in you know, these specific positions or who want to pursue this path. And I think maybe at the time, it maybe I just found that maybe there wasn’t a big enough market for it. And I wanted to go general or broad time. But now I definitely agree with you that I really get people to think about going narrow and deep. Like if you can become the person who is going to serve the one niche and you become the person for that. Yeah, that it becomes a lot easier to to build a successful brand very rapidly.
David Ralph [38:52]
Didn’t you know what fascinates me with you, you are listening to you, you’re very measured, you’re very thoughtful. And the fact that you have taken bits and you’ve taken this into many different arenas, you’ve taken it into authorship, you’ve taken it on to the TV, you’ve taken it into sort of radio. Well, those things natural to you, or was it really out of your comfort zone The first time you got invited onto TV, for example? Did you go Yeah, brilliant. This is exciting. What did you think? Oh my god, I don’t think this is my kind of thing. Was it always in your bag?
Yuri Elkaim [39:27]
Yeah, I mean, it’s funny cuz I, I thrive on stage. And that can be in front of a camera that can be on TV, that can be in front of, you know, thousands of people. And it’s funny, because when I think back to, to wanting to play pro soccer, yes, I love the sport. But I think a big element of that was just being a performer. And when I was young, I remember really enjoying like theater. So I would do like a lot of improv stuff when I was young in school. And I just really enjoyed that. And you know, whether it was on the soccer pitch in front of 10s of thousands of people, or in front of a camera that was eventually going to be seen by thousands or 10s of thousands of people on YouTube or being on, you know, popular TV shows, it’s when I’m in those situations, it’s very natural. For me, it’s like, oh, yes, I’m home, I’m good. But again, some people like to freak out, it wasn’t as scary. And again, there is projecting their own fears into that specific situation. So I feel the most natural when I’m speaking. So this could be like this type of interview, it could be on video, it could be in person. And I don’t enjoy as much the writing stuff. So a lot of the content that we produce is really repurposed from a lot of the spoken content that have created. So a lot of the videos and podcasts that I’ve done, we have a team of writers who write in my voice that are able to take that and turn it into really great written content, that yes, I could do going back to our earlier discussion about things that you’re really good at doing, but don’t really energize you, I’m really good at reading content, but I don’t enjoy it, I would postpone it forever. And so I’m like, Listen, I shouldn’t be doing this. So. So those are the things that I sort of, so those are the things that it took me a while to kind of get off my plate. But now that I have, I can focus on the stuff that really, really kind of energizes me, which is, which is this kind of stuff.
David Ralph [41:22]
And that is where your life is now you can let it go. I don’t fancy doing that. Somebody else can do it. I yeah, yeah, that’s it, I’m gonna do that.
Yuri Elkaim [41:30]
Yeah. And like, for instance, I love doing on the business side, we do a lot of small workshops, right. So about, you know, 20 people, Max, teach them how to build their business online. And I love the small group settings. Because, for me, I could do that every single week, and it would completely energize me, I would be totally fulfilled. I talked with other people. And they’re like, I would hate that. And I’m like, that’s, that’s great. I mean, you know, in some cases, they love writing, they just one of them had themselves in a closet and right, and I’m like, do that that’s terrific. But for me to really nourish my soul. It’s funny, because you come online to get all this to get all this freedom, and there’s all this, you know, this impact. But then you have to be honest with yourself, like I love the connection of human beings. And I think most humans enjoy some level of connection. So being really truthful about what really energizes you, and what really nourishes your soul is really important, because I’ve seen it so many times, where people come from a very connected offline type of space, whether it’s in an office or, you know, an a clinic, or a gym, where they’re interacting with people all day long. And then they come online, and they’re sitting on their computer all day, and they’re miserable. And, yes, it’s important to build a business that has systems and processes that can run themselves on autopilot, so you can have a bit more freedom. But you also have to be like, Listen, what can I do? What I like, is what I’m doing really my big calling, is it really nourishing me or is it causing me to go down a path that is slowly but surely sucking away at my soul. And I think you have to really think about that and be honest with yourself about what it is you want to do, and what it is within your business that really nourishes that that inner child of that soul part of you?
David Ralph [43:22]
Well, let’s play some words now by the legend that’s no longer with us. But he created the whole theme of this show. And he did some other things like create apple and stuff. This is Steve Jobs.
Steve Jobs [43:34]
Of course, it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards, 10 years later. Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward, you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future, you have to trust in something, your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. Because believing that the dots will connect down road will give you the confidence to follow your heart, even when it leaves you off the well worn path. And that will make all the difference.
David Ralph [44:09]
Now, I love asking people this question, but first of all, do those words sort of fill you up with excitement? Do you feel like you’re creating your own path on a truth in those words?
Yuri Elkaim [44:22]
That’s that’s an amazing audio clip, it’s it’s so good. Because, you know, a lot of times, it’s really just about taking one step at a time and having faith that the rest of the staircase will unfold. And it’s very, I mean, as entrepreneurs truly are like, we are very special people, because most people are not willing to do the things that we are willing to do. And they’re willing to sacrifice their freedom. For suppose it security of working for somebody else, which is really not true security, I think we all know, but us entrepreneurs were like, yes, here’s an idea that I have, I don’t know that it’s going to work, but I just I that I can make it work, and be able to take one step at a time and to a staircase that leads into the clouds where you don’t even know if it ends or if it continues going to somewhere even greater is a really special quality that thankfully, a number of people have otherwise I don’t think our world would exist as it does. And it requires people to take that that leap of faith to have that vision to have that faith. Even when things are tough. Even when you don’t know if things can work out. There’s always this inner flame inside of you that is like I don’t know how this is going to work out. But I know I can make it work. And I’ve met some really special quality.
David Ralph [45:38]
And when you look back over your life up, is there a big dot? Would it be too simple to say about your initial health? Was the real big dot that led you where you are to now? Or has it happened at a later stage in your life when you suddenly bow? Yeah, this is it did this was why I was put on this planet?
Yuri Elkaim [45:57]
Yeah, there’s probably both three of them definitely have hair loss at 17 was the big kind of initial pivoting point. Second was that when I went back to school after retiring from Pro soccer, to study holistic nutrition, which that was a game changer for me. And then I would say, really getting to the point in my business where I accepted that it was okay to publicly put out to the world that I’m actually helping other people build their business too, because I, for whatever reason, I struggled with that for a while because I felt that if Well, I’m going to keep it behind closed doors. So nobody knows that I’m teaching marketing and business because if they find out, then they’ll think I’m the slave and slimy douche bag was looking for money. And I got to the point I was like, No, that’s no, I’m on I’m on a mission to impact millions of people, and I can’t do that alone. But if I can help other influencers, increase their impact, then everybody wins. And so when I made that distinction, it became a lot easier for me to publicly even to my health audience say, Listen, if any of you guys are health experts are passionate about health, and you want to take this thing and really build it. I’d love to help you. And a lot of people yeah, I totally get that assistance. I think it’s great. They’re doing this. And for the people who don’t think that are just getting hired or just, you know, a scam or looking for money. Those are not the people that I even want to associate with. So I think those are three big pivotal moments in my life so far.
David Ralph [47:30]
And do you think that you are at the end? Or do you just think that you’re getting going Have you got a vision, a two year plan five year plan, you’re very open at the beginning, you just kind of made it up as you went along? Is it more structured? Now? Do you know exactly where you’re going?
Yuri Elkaim [47:45]
Well, I definitely I don’t even feel like I’ve scratched the surface to be very honest. I mean, I, it’s I’m 36 somewhat, I think my goal is still it to 144 and really good health. So there’s a lot of years ahead of stuff. And I have vision by 2040 to help 100 million people just within our own health business, to better health. And with that, you know, we have ideas for some really cool technologies that, you know, we don’t even know how they’re gonna be created. But some really cool things that could happen with all the advents and technology is happening so rapidly now, and different ways of like really empowering, lesser, lesser abled communities to really become more empowered with respect to their nutrition and health and kind of sustainable growth of food as opposed to relying on like Kraft Dinner, McDonald’s, and a lot of, you know, lower price foods that, unfortunately, lower income families are subjected to. So we’ve got a lot of really cool things that we want to do by 2040. And within that, on the business side, I want to help 1000 Health Partners 10 x through online business, so that collectively, we can help a billion people on the planet. And so that’s something that I’m really passionate about. Because I’m like, if I can help you grow your business, and you can impact more people, and you can make more money, right? The thing in the health space is that people are hung up on making money. I’m like, Listen, the more money you make, the more impact you can have. Right? The more profits your business has, the more you can reinvest in your business, the more you can hire people, the more you can put out into the world. And I think it’s everybody’s duty to be profitable, at least in business. Because if you’re not profitable, you’re not serving anyone. And so I’m really, really driven to help kind of build those two visions. And between all of that, I just focus on the next quarter, because we focus on what are we working on in the next 90 days, we’ve got a one year vision, a three year vision, a five year plan as well. But for the most part, those are fairly loose, because so much can change with with today’s rapid advancements and everything. So we focus on the next the immediate 90 days. And we’re always working in kind of the direction of our North Star that vision. And things might come up in the 90 days really, wow, this is an amazing idea, we should really build this out and kind of continue down this path. And that starts to influence what we do for the next quarter and the rest of the year. So we don’t get too hung up that okay, in like q3, we’re going to focus on this, we have to get something else, you know where to where to kind of lead us down a little bit of a different path. Because again, there’s new technologies that come out, there’s new ways of doing things more efficiently. There’s discoveries that you have in the process. For instance, like we had one thing on our big priorities for this quarter that we just took off the list because I was like, No, we have to push this back later in the year because now we need to be focusing on these two other things that are much more important. And if we did this other thing, it would be taking away too much for the time from our team and myself. So yeah, so 90 days, and that our bigger vision, everything else in between is up for negotiation.
David Ralph [50:49]
When I don’t have a 90 day plan, I just have an hour plan. And this is the part that we’ve been building up to Well, this is the part of the show when we send you back in time to have a one on one with your younger self. And if you could go back in time and speak to the young up, what advice would you give and what age would you choose? Well, we’re gonna find out because I’m going to play the theme tune and when it fades, you’re up this is the Sermon on the mic.
Unknown Speaker [51:19]
Best the show
Yuri Elkaim [51:36]
so I’m speaking with little Yuri Elkaim here who’s probably about that’s a 10 years old and what I would say to my younger self would be Don’t worry about what other people think because so much of what we do in life for a lot of in at least in my case, initially was more about what are people going to think of me if I’m you know, if I’m playing a good match on the soccer killed are people applauding me? Am I am I looking for praise from outside? Or am I do I have the the wherewithal to just be okay with, you know who I am as a person where I am right now. And just doing the best I can do without, you know, caring about if anyone’s watching. So really like what is what’s happening behind closed doors, doing what really matters, even when other people are not watching is is really important. The other thing I would say is, is is really follow I mean, follow your passion, follow your guts. Don’t worry about what other people think in terms of distracting you off that path. If you feel it’s something that you can pursue, if you feel it’s something you can excel at, just give your best. That’s all you can do, right? Whether it’s playing on the soccer pitch, or building a business or helping other people just give everything you can don’t leave anything on the field. And at the end of the day, you’ll know that you were successful because you did everything you could do it. So those are two lessons, I would tell my younger self,
David Ralph [53:02]
usually what’s the number one best way that our audience can connect with you.
Yuri Elkaim [53:07]
They can find me on so if they’re interested on the health nutrition and fitness side, they can check out our blog at Yuri Elkaim.com. So that’s why you are i e l k i m.com. We’re publishing daily blog posts or they’re just amazing content. And obviously on Facebook at the same name. If you’re an entrepreneur in the health or fitness space, you want to grow your business online, you can join our free community over at health printer group.com. And those are probably the two best places.
David Ralph [53:42]
Thank you so much for spending time with us today. joining up those dots, please come back again when you have more dots to join up. Because I do believe that by joining up the dots and connecting our past is the best way to build our futures up. Thank you so much. Thanks a lot for having me David it’s been fun. And once again, through dark times in somebody’s life, they find the thing that really lights them up. And if you are in that situation and you’re looking around again, this is terrible. This is terrible. Number one, ask yourself, Is this the worst it’s ever been? Secondly, ask what can I do to transition out of it. And if it’s just a monetary thing, even if you get another job that you know just pays the same or doesn’t pay as much. You’ve started building movement, you’ve started to break free from those anchors. And then you can make another decision like Oprah said, and another decision so you can move forward for the dream. When I started join up dots I took a huge pay cut from what I was getting previously, I was in comfort land. And I decided that the only way that I could move forward with my life was take that paper. And believe me, it was scary time. But you overcome it because you know, you’ve got to fill that gap. You’ve got to pay those bills. And once you start doing it blow me will you never go back again. Well, thank you so much for listening to the show. Thank you so much for being part of the community. join with us as I keep on saying on Facebook, on Twitter, whatever just tell us where you listen to it. I’m fascinated to get these tweets telling people telling us where people listen to the show and bottom line. See you again cheers
David doesn’t want you to become a faded version of the brilliant self you are wants to become so he’s put together an amazing guide for you called the eight pieces of advice that every successful entrepreneur practices, including the two that changed his life. Head over to join up dots.com to download this amazing guide for free and we’ll see you tomorrow on join up dots.