Bea is an established psychotherapist and Entrepreneur devoted to transforming traditional therapy into a more affordable and approachable experience. Which is why she created Pretty Padded Room. Pretty Padded Room is a platform that provides online therapy to women on their own time, and their own terms.
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- “Follow your fears and follow your fire.” – Unknown click to tweet!
- Bea decide to set up a practice right at the beginning of 2008. Then… WHAM. The recession hit full-force. Investors pulled out, the office space fell through… Bea was left with little choice but to declare her business an all-out failure.
Entrepreneurial AHA Moment
- Bea was trying to do it all, and then realized she was doing nothing well. When she took a page from E-Myth Revisited and started working on her business instead of in her business, good things started to happen almost instantaneously.
- Bea’s current business model is one to be quite jealous of. It is so obvious that this industry was just waiting for Pretty Padded Room. Way to fill that niche, Bea!
Small Business Resources
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Best Business Book
- Disgrace by J. M. Coetzee
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John Lee Dumas: Hire Fire Nation and thank you for joining me for another episode of EntrepreneurOnFire.com, your daily dose of inspiration. If you enjoy this free podcast, please show your support by leaving a rating and review here at iTunes. I will make sure to give you a shout out on an upcoming showing to thank you!
John Lee Dumas: Okay. Let’s get started. I am simply thrilled to introduce my guest today, Bea Arthur. Bea, are you prepared to ignite?
Bea Arthur: Hell yeah!
John Lee Dumas: That’s what I’m talking about!
Bea Arthur: [Laughs]
John Lee Dumas: Bea is an established psychotherapist and entrepreneur devoted to transforming traditional therapy into a more affordable and approachable experience. So she created Pretty Padded Room. Pretty Padded Room is a platform that provides online therapy to women on their own time, in their own terms.
I’ve given Fire Nation a little overview, Bea, but why don’t you take it from here and tell us who you are and what you do?
Bea Arthur: Well, first of all, I want to say thank you very much for having me, John. I’m happy to be here. Yes, I’m really glad to talk about my business. I’ve been doing it for almost two years. It’s a website that I started to, first of all, transform therapy. I felt like the Freudian approach has flatlined and it needed a makeover, and I felt like I was the woman to do it. I’m really happy to be able to provide counseling and therapy to people who are curious about it and wouldn’t have tried it otherwise. So we made it more available by putting it online. We made it more approachable by adding a lightness of touch. We made it more affordable by scaling it down so it’s on a subscription service rather than like an exorbitant $200 per session. So I’m really proud of what we’ve done and I’m just really happy to talk about following your passions today, and your fire.
John Lee Dumas: That’s just great. A quick little side note. I was having coffee with my girlfriend this morning. I was talking to her about my upcoming interviews and I was describing your business to her. She was just like, “Wow! That makes so much sense,” for all the reasons that you just said, and for the reasons that we’re going to get into later in this interview. So I’m really excited.
Before we do that, we’re going to transition to our first topic, which is our success quote, because EntrepreneurOnFire, it’s all about the motivation, it’s all about building the fire. That’s what we’re going to do right now with your favorite success quote.
Bea Arthur: My success quote would definitely have to be “Follow your fears and follow your fire.” I think that’s great for this show because so much of the entrepreneurial lifestyle requires a ton of strength, but most importantly, stamina. So I really think following your fears and following your fire is the only way to go.
John Lee Dumas: I love that. I also always ask this follow-up question. How do you apply that quote to your mentality?
Bea Arthur: Well, this is actually my second business. The idea for this business actually came around from failing. It didn’t work out. That was about two-and-a-half years ago. The first time around, I kind of romanticized the struggle that I was going to experience. I’m like, “Oh, I’m going to be eating ramen, but I’m going to be [believing] in something I love.” But the second time around, I knew it was just going to be a real [Expletive] and I was really scared to kind of get into that again and be in that mindset and that kind of struggle, but the idea stayed with me, and even though I was scared, I really wanted to follow it through and see it through. Even though I wasn’t looking forward to the struggle, but I knew it was necessary. So I always like to follow kind of rather than like loftier motivational quotes, I like the ones that recognize how big and bad and tough it is, and I’m a big, bad [Expletive]. I like to keep it real. So I really like those kind of quotes, the ones that recognize the struggle.
John Lee Dumas: Well, alright. Well, use that struggle now and let’s move into our next topic, which is failure. As entrepreneurs, our journeys are riddled with failures on some levels, and it’s really how we perceive those that define us as entrepreneurs. We can define them as challenges or as obstacles to overcome or what have you, but Bea, take us back to a point in your journey where you failed, and how you overcame that failure.
Bea Arthur: Well, like I mentioned, this is my second business. My first business, I should mention I started straight out of grad school, a 25 year old therapist. I babysat a lot through grad school, so I wanted to start a business for the moms I worked with, and I just started a social club for stay-at-home moms called “Me Time.”
I was able to get an investor. We were going to build this really great brownstone with babysitters. But that was 2008 right when the market crashed and the women I was targeting were the wives of all the men who had just been laid off. My investor said we should pull out and not do it. I wanted to do it, anyway, and I saw that doing it anyway with no money and no guidance was you can be as confident as you want, but without real tools – so it was a devastating failure, but at the time, a friend told me that you fail fast and you fail forward, and nobody who is successful has ever not failed. It’s just not possible because there’s so much to learn in those moments.
So as a result, I’m no longer afraid of failure, and this has brought me to this point. I did fail forward as a result of that failure. This business would have never happened. I’ve gone so much further with this business than my first one and I’m so much more connected to it because I think I was more mentally prepared, emotionally prepared, and I had a better idea of what I wanted to do and what I wanted to accomplish. So failure has been a major motivator for me.
John Lee Dumas: That’s such a valuable lesson. Can you pull another lesson out of that failure, Bea, that you really use to this day when you are acting the entrepreneurial self that you are?
Bea Arthur: I think that if you’re kind to yourself, because I think people who are entrepreneurial are very ambitious and very hard-working. As a result, we tend to be our own worst enemy. I mean, we’re competitive with ourselves. The flipside of that is that we really beat ourselves up when things go wrong. I just learned, like I really thought the world was going to end when my first business didn’t work out, but it didn’t. It didn’t. It’s not just one epic failure and it’s all over. I mean, there are failures every day sometimes. I mean I’ve done the math. About 80% of the time when you’re running a business, things don’t work out [Laughs]. I really think that’s the formula. So you can’t beat yourself up. You can’t come apart every time something doesn’t work out because you really do need the stamina and mental endurance to keep it going, and then to get your business off the ground. So I really welcome it. I really welcome it. It’s nothing to be afraid of.
John Lee Dumas: I definitely agree with that 80/20 rule, but it’s the 20% that we live for.
Bea Arthur: Yes! That’s what makes it matter, for sure.
John Lee Dumas: So Bea, let’s go to the other side of the spectrum now. We’ve talked about a failure that you’ve had and some challenges that you’ve encountered and lessons that you pulled from that. Such valuable information. Let’s go to the other end of the spectrum to your aha moment because as entrepreneurs, we’re always having little aha moments every day. I know you’re an inspiring person. You have an aha moment probably as soon as you wake up in the morning, and probably right before you go to bed at night, but I’m looking back in your journey and I want you to pull out that time when a lightning bolt just struck you or the clouds parted and the sun just was shining through and you said, “Wow! This is what I want to do. This is going to resonate so well with my clients, audience, fans.”
Bea Arthur: Yes, definitely. Absolutely. I mean especially in what I do, not only do I run this business, but I also take clients. I’m a therapist in private practice. So just the human experience is so relatable to me, and that’s what makes me be so kind and feel so real, I think, to my clients, because it’s not just about, “Oh, breathe through it or find your voice.” Sometimes it sucks, but then you have to really listen to your instincts.
So I think for me, my aha moment was at the beginning of the business, I really felt, especially since I had started a business before, I felt like I really had to be all in, but I wasn’t able to leave my job because I remembered being poor and being just super depressed. So I was working as a domestic violence counselor while I was building and preparing to launch Pretty Padded Room.
So in addition to treating 45 clients and working with their legal issues and their counseling and advocacy issues, I was also after work going and working on wireframes. Like looking at code and testing things, and I started to feel more like the janitor than the CEO. I just felt like I was not in charge. I was just cleaning up after everything. Then I realized, I don’t have to be good at everything, and I’m not good at everything. I mean I decided to just leave the tech stuff to the tech people. They knew way more what they were doing. The learning curve is so steep already. So I think it’s really important to just stick to your strengths and learn what you can from the experts.
I think we romanticize this idea of self-made, pulling yourself up, but there’s no reason to do it all, especially in our community. There are so many people who have struggled and know what it’s like and they are so willing to help. I mean, I’m a people person and I believe in other people, and I believe in getting help when you need it. So that was a huge moment for me. I mean it made everything so much easier.
John Lee Dumas: That aha moment is massive, and it goes back to Michael Gerber’s “E-Myth Revisited” when he just stresses the fact “Work on your business. Don’t work in your business,” because you are so much more valuable when you are running things from a supervisory role, and then letting the experts take their specialties, and then you can just really multiply your effectiveness and the effectiveness of your business overall.
Bea Arthur: Absolutely.
John Lee Dumas: What were some specific actions, Bea, that you took after this aha moment that you just saw immediate and great results from?
Bea Arthur: I just started reaching out. I mean, a lot of my day was spent doing research, but once I realized that I could just get it from other people, then it was development. So I think that’s just such a great combo in any business in trying to be successful. You go to who has the research and you just build on that. So I would ask my lawyer friends, I would ask tech people, I would go to networking events. I don’t know why there are some entrepreneurs, and I think this is a really important thing to address for our community, and I was like this my first time around, that they don’t want to talk about their idea because they think somebody is going to steal it. I mean I’ve had people who want me to sign an NDA for like a social network for dogs. Like I have no reason to want to steal that business, but I can certainly put input, I could certainly connect you with people who have that same vision or could enhance your vision.
So I think that people think they should keep it to themselves, and to a certain extent, yes, because your vision will change and grow. But I just started talking to more people, and just the time I saved just trying to learn it on my own, just by sending emails and doing outreach to people who could help or at least answer some questions for me, was just so valuable. I mean really. Like it took years, added years to my life [Laughs] doing that, and I’ve already been through school. I went to grad school. I mean this is literally, sometimes when you’re talking to people on things that you’re trying to figure out in a week or a month, there are people who have done this their whole lives that can really simplify it for you and make it easier. So just talking to people, and that’s what I do best.
John Lee Dumas: That’s so great, and that really embodies what EntrepreneurOnFire is all about. It’s about the sharing of the wealth of knowledge, the experience, the failures, the successes, that entrepreneurs like yourself have already been there and done that to speed the learning curve up for those people, those entrepreneurs, who are looking to make that launch. So thank you so much for sharing these insights with us. It’s really truly valuable.
Bea Arthur: It’s my pleasure.
John Lee Dumas: One quote that I just really love to refer to when we’re talking about this topic is – I can’t even attribute it to somebody specific, I can’t remember who it was, but he said, “If you actually have a great idea, you have to really jam it down people’s throats because people don’t recognize great ideas. So don’t be worried if you have a great idea.”
Bea Arthur: That’s so true. That is very true. A lot of people just don’t get it. I mean, yes, absolutely. How do you explain Twitter to someone? Nobody would have known they liked that, and look at it now. So it’s true. Absolutely. Tell everybody.
John Lee Dumas: What do you mean people are only going to be able to have 140 characters? People want to say way more stuff than that. Yes, they do, but nobody wants to read more than that.
Bea Arthur: Exactly. Right.
John Lee Dumas: So Bea, let’s move to our next topic. Let’s talk about your current business. You have a lot of things going on right now that are very exciting. What’s one thing that’s really exciting you about your business right now?
Bea Arthur: I’m really excited because this is an emerging market. I would say that distance counseling, telemedicine, cyber psychology and just doing therapy online is such a new business. There’s not a lot of even legal limitations or legal language or anything on the books about it. So it’s really great to be a part of defining this market, and I feel like my business, Pretty Padded Room, has a chance to not just define, but really dominate in this space by distinguishing myself from our competitors. Like there are no rules. I mean think about like waking up and you’re like, “Let’s just make up a game. Let’s make up a [language].”
So that is really fun, but there obviously always needs to be some strong sort of structure. So the same old business rules do kind of apply when it comes to strategy, but I just love that – I mean, we have clients all over the world. In Thailand, in the United Arab Emirates, who was one of our very first clients. I do not know how they find us. We’ve done no marketing. We’ve had clients in Australia. People who wouldn’t have tried therapy otherwise, and I get to make them feel better. We’ve all been at that point. I work with amazing women. I just feel really lucky. I mean, I’m a matchmaker. I love to bring people together. It’s just awesome. I think it’s so powerful.
John Lee Dumas: It is so powerful, Bea, and it’s the world we live in because even to look at my industry with iTunes and with Stitcher Radio, on September 21st, that was the day that I launched. Three days later, I go on to my statistics, and I’ve averaging 3,000 downloads every single day. Individual downloads from over 100 countries. I couldn’t believe that like literally every country in South America, except for one country I actually had never even heard of, I mean I was like, “Wow!”
Bea Arthur: Wow!
John Lee Dumas: This is insane, the world that we live in. We are just reaching so many people, thanks to the technology that we have today with the mobile and the Wi-Fi, and it’s such a flat and exciting world that I could not agree with you more that your industry is really on the verge of something pretty special.
Bea Arthur: Yes. Well, thank you very much. I appreciate it. Congratulations to you. You’re number four on iTunes now. I have no doubt you’re going to be number one soon.
John Lee Dumas: [Laughs] Well, thank you. It’s interviewing great people like yourself every single day and kind of providing that little dose of inspiration I think is why I’m just getting this number of downloads and just that snowball effect that’s just happening more and more every day. It’s exciting. I love the free inspirational content that I give. Of course we couldn’t do it without people like you, Bea, who are actually out there inspiring.
Bea Arthur: Oh, I’m happy to do it. I’m happy to help, happy to live it.
John Lee Dumas: So Bea, one thing at EntrepreneurOnFire, we like to pull the curtain back because a lot of Fire Nation listeners don’t exactly know what an entrepreneur would do during the course of a day. It’s kind of a mystery to them.
Bea Arthur: [Laughs] Yes.
John Lee Dumas: What are two tasks that seem to occupy a good portion of your day, every day?
Bea Arthur: My whole day is spent on my futon [Laughs], and answering questions and asking questions. That is literally most of my day. I’m the point of contact for my clients, for my tech team, for my therapists. So I’m answering my therapists’ and my clients’ questions, and I have to coordinate with the tech team to always improve and enhance upon customer experience, user experience and customer support. So yes, it’s actually very, very dull [Laughs], and I’ve gained a lot of weight as a result, but yes, I’m on the computer the whole day [Laughs].
John Lee Dumas: You should get a standing/walking desk. That would make all the difference in the world.
Bea Arthur: Well, as soon as I have $5,000, that’s what I’m going to get [Laughs].
John Lee Dumas: [Laughs]
Bea Arthur: That will be my first stupid purchase [Laughs].
John Lee Dumas: So Bea – and that would not be stupid. It’d be brilliant.
Bea Arthur: [Laughs] Are you [raring] for one right now?
John Lee Dumas: [Laughs] Can we talk for a second about the team that you’ve put together? I’m really interested. You say that you are more than happy to give tasks to people who are really experts in those specific tasks. Tell us about your team.
Bea Arthur: Yes. I’ve been really, really lucky. Well, first, I want to acknowledge and give a shout-out to Bell & Whistle, which is the design and development company that built my website. I came with a lot of friends and the concept and they really got immediately what I was going for. They’re actually based in Brooklyn, in Williamsburg actually, but their developers are based in Peru. So I like that you mentioned South America. So a shout-out to Lima, Peru. They built me this amazing site. They really got it. I mean they thought of everything. There are so many unanticipated issues, especially in tech and user experience. So they really did their thing with my site. I couldn’t be happier. So that’s Bell & Whistle. Thank you so much.
Then my team of women that work for me, they’re all freelance therapists. I just put out the word just in my community, people I knew. I’m a therapist and most of my friends are therapists. I thought people wouldn’t necessarily be onboard with the branding, with the title, with our concept, but again, people just got it. So I would say for another thing as far as advice, people always say to surround yourself with positive people. I think more than that, it’s surrounding yourself with people who get you because when you’re on the same page, it’s just like in a relationship, it’s just like in any business. When you’re on the same page, I just really think you can just build upon something and make it so much better than what you originally thought. So the women I work with, I mean it really touches my heart. Sometimes, as a CEO, you feel like you’re alone. No one will ever love you or your business as much as you do, but these women work just as hard. They do great work with our clients and it just really touches my heart. That is inspiring that you can work so hard for something that you didn’t build, but they’re absolutely a part of it 100%. A big part.
John Lee Dumas: So Bea, what is the vision that you have for the future of Pretty Padded Room?
Bea Arthur: So going forward, again, we haven’t been marketing at all just because there have been several rounds of changes to the site on the tech and the backend, but going forward when we market, we’re definitely going to start video marketing. I’m actually shooting a video later today. Sometimes with online therapy, I think there’s kind of a Wizard of Oz thing. Like people don’t really know who’s behind the curtain. So I think getting my team and myself in front of the cameras to show that we’re not just some weirdo online and really showing our stuff, what we know, who we are, what we’re like, will be really great and will add another layer to our service.
We’re also going to be taking our services offline. We were approached by The Learning Annex to start conducting workshops for women. So that will be great just to get out and meet the people and just give help in person because we love that too. Long term, I would love to develop a social software. Again, like our market is wide open and I would love to really put the stamp on it and really have a software that’s kind of the Outlook for distance counseling and online therapy.
John Lee Dumas: Well, that’s very exciting, and I have no doubt that you will be putting a stamp on this industry, Bea.
Bea Arthur: Oh, thank you, John. I appreciate it.
John Lee Dumas: So listen, we’ve now reached my favorite part of the show, Bea. We’re going to enter the Lightning Round. This is where I provide you with a series of questions and you come back with amazing and mind-blowing answers. Does that sound like a plan?
Bea Arthur: Let’s do it!
John Lee Dumas: Okay. Now it’s very obvious that you are an expert psychotherapist, and I say that because you have an amazing way of just delivering incredible amounts of information very efficiently and very compact. I’m saying that because we’re at about the 21 minute mark now, which is perfect in my mind because it really gives us time for the Lightning Round questions, but I just want to really let you know that we do have a couple of minutes per question to answer because I like these interviews to go between 25 to 35 minutes. That’s the goal. So we’re definitely going to be in that range, but I’m really getting a lot of value from this. So take your time. Don’t feel like these have to be one word answers, and just give it back to us.
Bea Arthur: Okay.
John Lee Dumas: What was the number one thing that was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur?
Bea Arthur: Well, definitely at the start, the feel of failing again. Like I said, the first time around was not pretty. It was very painful. Like I said, I wouldn’t have this business. I wouldn’t have come up with this idea for sure if I hadn’t done it. Also, I think the good thing to come from that is that even though I failed and I was so embarrassed, at the end of the day, my family and friends would still love me, no matter what. They would love me if I was the [taco bell]. So don’t be afraid of failing, but think the people and the things that matter will still be there. So you might as well try it for something for yourself.
John Lee Dumas: Love that. What is the best business advice that you ever received?
Bea Arthur: I think in business and in life, and I tell my clients all the time, for me the key to success is you have to have a short memory and a long vision. So you just really can’t dwell on things that didn’t go right because you have to keep your eyes on the ball and your eyes on the goal. So short memory, long vision. Definitely.
John Lee Dumas: Absolutely great advice. What’s something that’s working for you or your business right now?
Bea Arthur: I would definitely say the team that I’ve been really lucky to find. The women I work with are so awesome and they really get me and what we’re trying to do. So just the people that have been attracted to this project. I haven’t had to convince anybody. Nobody’s working against their will. I think it’s just so important to really get people who really believe in you, and in every level. I mean even on the tech space, there have definitely been people who’ve told me to my face that it’s a dumb idea or that it won’t ever work, but the people who built the site just immediately got it and ran with it and exceeded my expectations. So surround yourself with people who get you and understand what you’re going for.
John Lee Dumas: I love that. Some other advice that I’ve received in the past that I’m a big believer in that I’m kind of curious if you’d agree with this, it seems that with most entrepreneurs that run businesses like yours, like mine, you have 20% of people that are just going to be ardent admirers. They’re going to love it no matter what. They’re going to be your biggest fans. Then you have 20% of people who are never going to get it, and maybe some of that 20% is actually going to be pretty negative towards you.
Bea Arthur: Yes.
John Lee Dumas: I’ve really found it’s that 60% in the middle that I get most of my valuable resources and information from because it’s not those people that are just going to be praising me, it’s not the people that are just going to be Nancy Negative seven days a week. It’s those people in the middle that really like it and they really want to provide some added value to it. Have you had that?
Bea Arthur: Absolutely. I really actually like the breakdown of that too because that’s kind of how it is with people and just regular relationships. There’s going to be people who love you no matter what. I mean like I could kill somebody’s whole family and my mom would be like, “Well, you were having a bad day.”
John Lee Dumas: [Laughs]
Bea Arthur: So it’s good to have that in your pocket. Then there’s the people that you just learn to ignore who it’s almost laughable after a while just how much they don’t like you, for whatever reason. Again, that’s out of your control. The real value, like you mentioned, comes from people who are just like, “Oh, alright. Well, that’s kind of cool or have you thought of this?” Those are the people. That’s when it becomes an actual conversation. I think that’s where you learn. Not just somebody telling you something or not just one-way listening to something. The conversation and the engaging, that’s where learning occurs. So I would totally agree with that.
John Lee Dumas: Love it. I’m glad you’ve had similar experiences.
Bea Arthur: Oh yes.
John Lee Dumas: So Bea, you are self-professed not a geek, not a tech person on the nth level, but do you have an Internet resource like an Evernote that you’re just in love with that you can share with Fire Nation?
Bea Arthur: You know what I love? I’m a huge fan – and I read it every morning, actually – Quora. Do you know about Quora?
John Lee Dumas: I know about it. I’m actually trying to figure out how to apply it to my business. So I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Bea Arthur: Well, there’s just so many things on there that are truthful. Again, when you are starting your business, I think this is a huge problem for a lot of entrepreneurs. It’s certainly been an issue for me. You tend to doubt yourself on a regular basis. Am I doing the right thing? Do I know what I’m doing? You just doubt yourself a lot and you’re worried about making the wrong mistakes.
Quora asks crazy questions. I mean literally you could think of from what does it feel like to do heroin to what’s it like to be married to a supermodel or what’s the worst failure you’ve ever experienced? The Internet can kind of be a dark and scary place, but on Quora, everybody answers and people just answer with truth and just what it’s like to go through all these experience. The common theme to all these things is that you get through it. Like I said at the beginning, stamina is such an important part of your journey.
I read a question one morning. It was like what is it like to have a family member die? This girl wrote this essay about how her whole family and their dog was killed in a small plane accident and just what people say to you and don’t say and how people react. Obviously, as a therapist, I’m really into the human experience and the human condition. But the common theme is that we’re all the same, like on some gut level. Especially when you’re doubting yourself, you’ll get through it.
I mean people get through worse things than what you’re going through, especially if it’s just some imaginary fear or some imaginary terrible outcome. The real things that people get through are so inspiring. I mean you can’t make this stuff up. So why not just go for what you want to try, even if it’s not real yet? Like the same fear isn’t as real as the same success that you could have. It’s not real yet. So why not go for it? It’s totally possible. So I love Quora. There’s so much truth on there.
John Lee Dumas: That is powerful. I can see how that would be so valuable in your business. I love that.
Bea Arthur: Oh yes. Yes, definitely.
John Lee Dumas: So Bea, what’s the best book that you’ve read in the last six months?
Bea Arthur: In the last six months, I actually haven’t had an opportunity to really read that much, but the last good book I read was – what’s his name? David. I’m not sure if I’m saying his name right. It’s Coetzee. He’s a South African writer and he writes about the post-Apartheid experience, but it was just a fiction story about him and him having a lesbian daughter, but I really like really practical people in really difficult circumstances because you can apply logic to it all you want, but life is not logical at all. That was just the common theme throughout that book, and I just really love that because if there’s no logic, then there’s nothing holding you back. People who are too logical don’t start businesses because there’s too many ways that it won’t work out. So I really love it when people are put in these predicaments and you just have to see it through.
John Lee Dumas: Do you know the title of that book by any chance?
Bea Arthur: It’s called “Disgrace.”
John Lee Dumas: Alright. We will link that up in the show notes for sure. So Bea, I just had an awesome interview with Andrew Warner. I had him on EntrepreneurOnFire. He’s the founder of Mixergy. There was a question that he recommended that I ask to interviewees. So you’re actually the first person that I’m going to be asking this question to.
Bea Arthur: Ooh la la! Okay. I’m scared!
John Lee Dumas: What is one thing that I should have asked you that I didn’t?
Bea Arthur: A good question that I always determine with my entrepreneur friends is would they keep doing it for free because it takes so long to get it off the ground. I mean you know this. You basically work for free and you never worked as hard in your life and worked for so little. If you would do it for free. I definitely think that with both of the businesses that I’ve tried to start, I definitely would do it for free because that’s where my heart was and I just liked it so much. Especially in my line of work, I see so many people who are unhappy and unfulfilled by their professional life. Then on the other hand, in my community, you see people who are literally just getting into it to be the next Zuckerberg and get trillions of dollars and want to sell out. That’s also not the way to go about it. So would I do it for free? Yes. I don’t even know if that’s a good question. I guess everybody would say yes.
John Lee Dumas: Well, sometimes people find that they’ve gone down a road and they can’t back up. So I think that question could really provoke some really good answers, so thank you for sharing yours. So Bea, this last question, it’s my favorite. It’s kind of a tricky one so take your time and digest it before you come back with an answer. If you woke up tomorrow morning and you still had all the money, experience and knowledge that you currently have right now, but everything about your business had completely disappeared, leaving you essentially with a clean slate, what would you do?
Bea Arthur: The first thing I would do is go somewhere and be alone because you just have to process. Like I imagine if it went away and it was a bad thing, then you have to mourn the loss. I’d definitely want to be alone. I would definitely want to listen to my spirit and just really connect with every feeling because I always tell my clients every emotion deserves equal respect. So whether you’re angry or super sad, I would really just feel those things fully in order to process it. Then I would just evaluate my needs and go from there. I think it’s so important to listen to yourself, and even fear of failure. Those are important feelings that we need to pay attention to, and as humans, we’re the only animals that don’t listen to our instincts and don’t trust our instincts. So I think it would be really important to pay attention to what I was feeling in that moment so I could go forward.
John Lee Dumas: I love that, Bea. You’ve given us some great advice this entire interview, and it’s been really actionable and specific. So Fire Nation, we thank you for that, and we’re all better for it.
Bea Arthur: Oh, thank you. Thank you very much.
John Lee Dumas: Give us one parting piece of guidance, then give yourself a plug, and then we’ll say goodbye.
Bea Arthur: Just no fear. No fear. It’s totally pointless. You just do what you want to do. This is your life. Live it how you want to. Take a chance. Not enough people are taking chances and risks, so just do it. It takes a long time for something to be successful so you should start right away.
Then the plug for myself, that is PrettyPaddedRoom.com. It’s a nice place to go crazy. We have awesome therapists with a range of specializations through video chat or digital diary. You could do it anytime and anywhere, as much or as little as you like. It’s really affordable, and it’s just a cool place to hang out. So get on over to PrettyPaddedRoom.com
John Lee Dumas: Love it, Bea. Fire Nation, we salute you, and we’ll catch you on the flipside.
Bea Arthur: Thanks, Fire Nation! Thank you, John.