Welcome To Joe Apfelbaum

Author, Speaker, Entrepreneur

Ajax Union Networking Masterclass

Eating Bread Is a Luxury, Can You Afford It?

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“Pass the bread, please” says the man that can’t fit into his shirt while holding the butter knife with one hand and the plate of margarine with the other hand. “Let’s go, pass it down while it’s still warm.”

That man was me, I would eat bread like some people spend money they don’t have, on credit cards. I could not afford the luxury of eating all the bread and asking for doubles but I still did it because I didn’t know what it was doing to my bottom line.

I would eat bread like some people spend money they don’t have.

You might ask, how could you not know? It’s the same question I ask my friends that are 50k in credit card debt and have no emergency savings, no lifeline and no cash in the bank. They are constantly spending more than they earn and buying luxuries with their income.

I am not talking about people who are spending money buying the basics and are on minimum wage. I am talking about people who make multiple six figures and still can’t make their mortgage payment because other things take priority.

Losing 75 pounds puts things into perspective for me. When I look at a luxury food item for example let’s say, chocolate. I ask myself, can I afford that? Am I in the condition to purchase that and eat it? If I am being true to myself, I will answer that I really can’t afford it because I am still overweight and I am not burning enough calories each day to justify that bar of chocolate.

When I look at a luxury food item for example let’s say, chocolate. I ask myself, can I afford that?

Someone once told me that if you can’t eat anything you want, you are simply not living. Who would want to live like that. I simply smile and say your are right. I my mind I think to myself, how can anyone live with 75 pounds of extra fat on their body, carry around all that weight just because they can’t control their habits, their desires and their impulses.

Being fat held me back from doing simple things like running after my kids and playing catch or like standing for long periods of time. It held me back from going for a nice 6 mile walk around the park which is one of my favorite things to do now.

Being fat held me back from doing simple things like running after my kids and playing catch

The interesting thing is that I can afford to eat bread right now because I am happy where I am, I need to eat it in moderation. I ate bread every day for the past week and did not gain a pound. Why? Because I didn’t over eat more than I burned and I also was aware that It’s a luxury.

Overspending on luxuries when you can’t afford to do that is a bad habit that we justify and so is overeating the wrong types of food.

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The Results Of Going Off Facebook for 2 Weeks

Joe Apfelbaum Huh?One day I was walking in the park and I got an idea, I would film a video of myself giving people some tips about how to set goals and take their life to the next level. There were three simple steps, build confidence by reflecting, create clarity by identifying your desires and writing them down and activation by creating small actionable steps toward your goal.

When people take action they feel Mojovated! Its really amazing to see how excited I get when I accomplish something that I have been pushing off. There is no better feeling in the world than to know that you are fulfilling your purpose and being productive.

The problem is that there are many distractions. Those distractions take my attention away from the goal. If I was going to practice what I preached I had to remove some distractions. For me it was Facebook. It was taking up too much of my time. I love checking up on all the comments and like that people give me but its taking away my attention from my goals.

So I committed to going off Facebook for 2 weeks at the end of December so I can plan for an amazing 2016.

There were times that I would look at my phone, looking for the facebook icon, but it was gone! No notifications, no engagement. Just me and my task to get clear on my goals.

I remember thinking to myself, I really did reclaim tons of precious time. The ability for me to focus now and not get distracted by this amazing social platform is novel. It actually feels good to be off facebook at a time where everyone is tuned in to see what others are doing for the holiday. It was amazing.

I filmed 52 episodes of my new TV show on www.GrowTime.tv which is coming out on Tuesday Jan 5th 2016. Most of the episodes came out perfectly in one take because I was not distracted and I was fully focused.

CEOMojo was also relaunched and the first episode for 2016 will be going live on Friday Jan 8th 2016. I will be interviewing 52 CEOs about the things that Mojovate them! So far I already interviewed half a dozen and created the full format for the show including the intro and outro. Make sure you subscribe on ITUNES.

Created an amazing plan for GrowTime Academy where I will be launching courses for business leaders that want to grow from Average Joe to CEO.

Added a new template to JoeApfelbaum.com and started the process of putting together my personal brand website properly so I can launch it in early 2016. I am really excited about this website and the plans that I have for it.

Took the time to create a perfect Vision for Ajax Union our Digital Marketing Agency in Brooklyn. Monday Jan 4th we will have a special company meeting and review the Vision that is on the wall with the whole company so everyone is rowing in the same direction in 2016.

These two weeks were especially productive because I had the time to reflect on all the amazing people that I have met over the past year, the friend I have made and all the great things I have accomplished.

Here are some highlights.

  • Weight: Lost over 75 pounds in the past 3 years, this year was my breakthrough year getting to the goal I set 3 years ago!
  • Fitness: When I got down to do pushups a few years back, I was not able to do one! A trainer said that to be healthy you need to be able to do at least 30. On my birthday I got down at an EO event and did pushups with Larry Zogby.. We did more than 30 and who is counting! I also ran my fastest mile ever, sub 8 minute mile and I ran my fastest 3 miles ever in under 30 minutes. That was a huge accomplishment for a person that used to not be able to run even one block!
  • Writing: I finished draft one of my book “Average Joe to CEO” and I set a goal to finish draft two in Q1 of 2016.  I wrote over 40,000 words in 20 days. That really blew me away. I was so focused and pushed myself to do it. I have been talking about writing a book for years. I am so happy I got to this point.
  • Video: I have been posting an impromptu video on Facebook almost everyday for the past few months. People have been telling me that they love watching my videos and they learn so much. Little do they know that I was used to be afraid of having myself on video and now I can film 52 episodes of a tv show in just a few weeks!
  • Productivity: For the first time in my life I can actually say that I have an organization plan. A plan to have all my projects and tasks in a place where I know what done looks like and all the tasks that need to be acted upon to finish the project. I have an amazing Admin that is helping me stay focused and I and finishing things that I have started.
  • Routine: I have optimized my morning routine. I wake up on most days by 4am and I journal, meditate, pray, read, write, exercise, eat a healthy breakfast. I never really optimized my routine like this. I used to be so reactive in my life and I feel so amazing now.
  • Relationships: I have done over 1000 selfies with people that I care about in 2015 and that is up from under 500 in 2014. My relationships are deeper than ever and I feel more satisfied in all my personal and business relationships.

There are so many more accomplishments that I have reflected upon and I have set goals to take my life to a whole new level in 2016. Now it’s time for me to get back to work. I hope this article inspired you to take action and eliminate some distractions so you can build the confidence, create clarity and take action…

Happy and Healthy New Year!

Joe Apfelbaum
Ajax Union

BIO: Joe Apfelbaum is the CEO and co-founder of digital marketing agencyAjax Union. He is a public speaker, certified Google Trainer, and published business author. Joe enjoys speaking and writing about a broad range of business topics in his seminars, webinars and articles. Joe is a member of the Board of Directors of the Entrepreneurs Organization in Brooklyn, a group with over 11,000 CEO’s and a contributing member of the INC Business Owners Council, a community of the fastest growing companies in the United States. Joe is proud of all his accomplishments, but most of all he is proud of his successfulfoodie wife and beautiful four kids.

The 10 Dumbest Things I Do

Jump Shot.. NOT!

Its real easy to give people advice on what to do. What about giving ourselves advice? We find other people who have all the faults in the world but we sometimes forget that we do pretty dumb things.

When thinking about 2016, I want to keep in mind that I am not the smartest person in the room and I can learn from every person I meet. Everyone has something to teach me.

Here are some things that I do that I want to improve in 2016.

Judge Other People

We all Judge others when we look at them. We must judge in order for not not to be overwhelmed. We take our past experiences and compare them to the present and automatically make assumption. It’s a natural thing that occurs in day to day life. For me the problem is not the day to do judging, its when I get a hint that I am wrong and I shouldn’t be generalizing other people and I ignore that hunch that I get that I am doing it. When I have that hint of awareness that there is more here than the eye sees and I don’t take that bait. When I do that it’s just dumb and I need to stop doing that in 2016. I will keep judging a book by its cover, title and table of contents but I will not judge the people I meet for the things that they have done and for the way they look. I will treat others with the respect I want them to treat me with and I will continue to grow as an individual.

Waste Time

Wasting time is relative. Some people think its a waste of time to work hard and others think it’s a waste of time to party. The way we invest our time can be looked at in the same way that we invest our money. We can either spend it or invest it. We all had those impulses to buy something we don’t need for people we don’t like with money we don’t have. We just buy it and don’t even eat it. We have big eyes sometimes. For me, it’s with time. I sometimes do things I know I should not be spending my time doing and I do it anyway. It’s not a good use of my time, I can have someone else do it. This year I will be smarter about my time and focus on my priorities and values to help me not waste time.

Chase Opportunity

Opportunity is amazing, it’s what drives people to make changes in their lives. The problem becomes when we start saying yes to things because we think, hey you never know. Its pretty dumb to throw away the opportunity you have with your current relationship for a maybe relationship or your current business for a maybe business that you didn’t even vett well. A real opportunity is when you weighed the risks against the rewards and you make a smart decision. Did you fully think that through or are you emotionally driving that decision because you are being impulsive? In 2016 I want to make my opportunity chasing about going deeper with what I already have and not look for new things that are shiny objects. Everytime you say Yes to something new you are saying No to something old.

Don’t Focus

Focusing on the wrong things is better than not focusing on anything. Focus is about being fully present with one thing at a time. Yes, we have thousands of external distractions each day and hundreds of thousands of internal distractions too. The key is to learn the art of focusing when it’s time to get something done to the end. Like this article would of never got written if I didnt focus on my goal of writing 2000 words a day. Technology and Social Media has taught me to be more distracted than ever before and in order for me to reclaim my focus I need to practice things like mindfulness and meditation. I took Facebook off my phone and that helped me focus too. Sometimes it’s the small things that make the biggest impact.

Start New Things Without Finishing The Old

Activation is one of my greatest strengths. I know how to get started. Taking a stale project and moving it forward or restarting something that most people think is dead is where I thrive. We all know that your greatest strength can also be your greatest weakness. I keep starting new things and I don’t finish the old things so I have hundreds of projects that don’t get finished. I pledge to stop doing that dumb activity in 2016 and I get people to help me finish the things that I start.

Am Not Precise Enough

Let’s tell someone to put the stuff in the Whatchamacallit. That’s not specific and it won’t get done. There are times that I know I am not being specific and I do that on purpose. Like during an interview, I like to ask open ended questions and see what people say. Limiting those questions to yes or no questions does not let shed light on the person’s creative personality. The problem is when I give people instructions. Or when I commit to a goal. You need to be super specific if you want it to get done. In 2016 I pledge to be more specific, to tell people what I want and when I want it and how I want it done.

Take Silly Risks

It’s important to take risks but taking risk for no reason is just plain dumb. If you are not in a rush don’t hurry, don’t take that risk just to get there faster because you are competitive. Sometimes it’s hard to differentiate the risks that are worth taking from the risks that are not worth taking. Its because we don’t take the time to properly calculate the risk or the fact that it’s a risk we are taking. The more we pause and ask myself, what is at risk here, the better we can decide and choose what risks are silly and what risks are worth taking.

Don’t Follow Up

Going to a an event, having an amazing meeting and not following up is such a waste. I took over 1000 selfies with hundreds of people last year and I followed up with many but I missed out on many opportunities too. There are times when it’s ok not to follow up, it’s not something you need to do with every person you meet, you have a limited amount of energy and you need to save it for the people the follow up that really does matter. Sometimes I miss a huge opportunity because I simply did not follow up and that is dumb. Getting in the habit of following up is the key. I pledge to be better at following up after I meet with someone, even if it’s just a thank you email.

Listen To My Negative Self Talk

When I see a video of myself, I hear myself on a podcast, or I see a photo of myself. I start making comments in my head that I would never make another people. They say to treat other people like you want yourself to be treated but we sometimes forget to treat ourselves with the positive light we tend to treat others with. This year I am going to listen to the negative self talk and I finally going to talk back. I am going to stop listening and start responding with so much positivity that it will drown my negative self talk with humor.

Don’t Practice What I Know.

The dumbest thing that I can possibly say is “I know that already” especially when I am not practicing that which I say I know. How many times did you go to a seminar looking for that “new idea” and realize that it’s the same old same old. You keep hearing those ideas that you already know but you are not doing them! This year I pledge to take the things I know I need to do to become a better human being and finally practice them!

Perfection is the enemy of greatness and you can’t be amazing if you try not to make any mistakes. The key is to learn from your mistakes and have progress every day. By analyzing the dumb things I do and learning from my mistakes I will make my dreams come true.

What are some dumb things that you do?

Feel free to let me know in the comments below.

Welcome

Welcome to Joe Apfelbaum’s Website. A Place where you will find out more about Joe’s Journey and how you can get in touch with him. Feel free to browse around and spend as much time as you need getting to know Joe.

If you enjoyed the website, reach out to Joe on Twitter @joeapfelbaum

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