Joe Apfelbaum – CEO of Ajax Union

Intro: [00:00:00] Who wants coffee? Who wants a pot of coffee? I just make coffee. You want a cup of coffee? Sure, here you go! Who wants coffee? Anybody else want coffee? And now it’s time for the man with the caffeine, the new tropics for the brain. It’s @CoffeeWithMike, hang in, hang tight, grab your cup and let’s get this thing started.

[00:00:27] Mike: [00:00:27] Welcome back everybody to Java Chat. This is Coffee With Mike and we have a special guest today who I’m really excited about having on the podcast. His name is Joe Applebaum. He is the CEO and founder of Ajax Union. It’s a B2B digital marketing agency in Brooklyn, New York. Brooklyn and coffee. Perfect. Perfect match. Thanks for joining us on this wonderful coffee day, Joe. I appreciate that.

[00:00:55] He’s a business strategist. He’s a LinkedIn expert, certified Google trainer. He enjoys speaking, writing about digital marketing, professional networking and personal development and the seminars, webinars, and articles. He’s an author of High Energy Secrets. We’ll want to get into that one. How to lose 95 pounds and keep it off, which is, you know what? There’s so many fricking health books, dude. Nobody ever puts that in the title. What the hell? And he also has a podcast, The Breakthrough Maze. So, you do the coaching live?

[00:01:27] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:01:27] Yeah, I do live coaching. 

[00:01:29] Mike: [00:01:29] Oh, that’s sick, dude. I’m going to have to come on your podcast now. Not as a guest, just to come and hang out. I want to hear this. He’s been featured on a hundred popular podcasts and many podcasts like ours, obviously. So yeah. Joe, welcome to the podcast. 

[00:01:42] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:01:42] Thank you for having me.

[00:01:44] Mike: [00:01:44] Absolutely. Give us a little bit about your background. I mean, how’d you get into this? Where did you start? 

[00:01:49] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:01:49] So I used to build websites for people. There’s a famous saying, if you build it, they will come. Have you heard of that before? 

[00:01:56] Mike: [00:01:56] I remember something. Some movie had that I think.

[00:01:58] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:01:58] If you build, then they will come. So I built many websites for people and people weren’t coming. People weren’t coming to the website. So I had to figure out, okay, what do I need to do? I need to market it. I need to market the websites. I had to learn how to market the website and what to do to market the website.

[00:02:12] And, that brought me on a whole journey to build a search engine marketing company, Ajax Union. Eventually, we turned it into a B2B marketing agency. But that journey of building a business, building a business that was featured on the INC 500 as one of the fastest growing companies in the U.S.

[00:02:32] It was very gratifying for me to be able to see that because growing up, I saw my mother try to build a business. And for 10 years she tried in the Lower East side to build her business. And eventually after 9/11, she went out of business. As a teenager watching that, I was like, what’s missing? How come I was able to build a company and she wasn’t able to do it?

[00:02:53] So I saw the difference was that she was mainly focused on luck instead of actually having a strategy. Like if you would ask her, Hey, what’s your plan? What’s your strategy to get to a million dollars. She’ll be like, What does that even mean? Like, What is strategy? Like, Why don’t you just strategies? Let’s just sell as much clothing as possible. And I see that with so many business owners is that they lack a strategy. They don’t have a plan. They’re not sure where they’re going. They’re not sure how they’re going to get there. They’re kind of just doing things and hoping for the best and hope is a great thing. It’s just not a great strategy. 

[00:03:26] Mike: [00:03:26] Yeah. There’s an old adage: the difference between hoping and having hope. If you have a strategy, you have hope. If you don’t have a strategy, you’re just hoping. And you’re right. That’s a bad strategy. So through all of that, you had to, I mean, was it just a straight shot through to being able to build the SEO or, I mean, who’d you learn from how’d you get there?

[00:03:53] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:03:53] Well, I had really good mentors. I read a lot of books. A lot of trial and error. So I failed a lot, you know, one of the most important things that people don’t realize is that you learn more from your failures than you do from your successes. And if you don’t get back up, then you’ll be like most people who just quit. You know, they start a business, it doesn’t work. They quit. They start another business. It doesn’t work right away. They quit and start another business. It doesn’t work for a year. 

[00:04:24] My business didn’t just suddenly start working. I had to figure out, Okay, who is my target market? I have to figure out, what am I going to actually give to them? What is my competitive advantage? And then once I figured out the product, it took me almost a full year to figure out what I was going to offer. Then, I had to spend another several, several years building up the agency, getting the customers, keeping them happy, all that stuff. So learning how to do that from scratch, because I used to be a person that did all the work.

[00:04:52] Big epiphany with Ajax Union was I want to work on the business, not in the business. So if you’re busy working in your business, doing the work. That’d be very hard for you to strategize and pull yourself out. So working with a coach, working with a mentor, reading the books, going to seminars, being part of groups that allow you to see how other people do things successfully is extremely important.

[00:05:14] Mike: [00:05:14] Absolutely agree. It’s huge. So when you started, did you start Ajax Union out the gate or was it that there was a B2C or always a B2B? Or how did you graduate?

[00:05:25]Joe Apfelbaum: [00:05:25] So I started Ajax from scratch, but we started off as just doing search engine optimization for small businesses.

[00:05:32] Mike: [00:05:32] Got it. 

[00:05:32] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:05:32] And then eventually we kind of started doing all forms as a marketing SEO, PPC, social, email marketing. And then from there we backtracked and built assets. And from there we backtrack to doing strategy for companies. And then before you knew it, we had this niche of building funnels for companies. Most companies don’t have a marketing funnel. Don’t even know what it is. So we build on top of the funnel marketing campaigns. 

[00:05:56] Mike: [00:05:56] That’s sweet. You mentioned social, huge thing these days, social selling, but I don’t see a lot of people doing it correctly. Can you kind of highlight what it is that you see that’s not being done right? And then maybe some suggestions on how to fix it. 

[00:06:12] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:06:12] Most people are trying to sell on social because they hear the word social selling, but selling is smelling. You don’t want to show up and throw up. You want to show up and follow up. So learning how to do that correctly is really important. So we created a course called the Evyrgreen networking system. And inside our course, we have nine modules where we walk you through how to go from a lurker to an influencer. And just 15 minutes a day, LinkedIn has the highest organic reach from any other social media platform. It’s the only professional social media platform. And Microsoft bought LinkedIn a couple of years back, they paid $26.2 billion from LinkedIn.

[00:06:47] I used to give classes on LinkedIn 10 years ago. There were only 60 million people on LinkedIn back then. Now, there’s over 700 million people and their goal is to get it to 3 billion people. And these are professionals, many of them millionaires and decision makers of companies. So if you’re going to network and your goal is to generate revenue, you can’t sell. People love to buy. They hate to be sold, but they love to buy. So figuring out how to build the rapport with people on social media and figuring out what their problem is and what they need is going to be the key. So the first step is having a strategy. We mentioned the whole idea of strategy, and we teach this, you know, we give you frameworks and teach you how to build a strategy inside our course.

[00:07:29] But the idea is you need to have a goal. You need to know who your target market is, and you need to know what is the messaging for that specific target market. Once you do that. Those are the first three modules of our course. Then, we teach you how to come up with your stories because features tell stories, sell how to come up with lots of power content, really great ideas, how to optimize your presence on social media, how to make sure you have a very strong presence.

[00:07:51] It starts with your profile, but then does your identity, your summary, your history, all that social proof is really important. And then making sure that you can measure everything well, people are not measuring. Like if you want to be successful at social media, social selling, you got to know what your key performance indicators need to be. Are you using dashboards to track your connections, to track your activity, to track your strategy? Most people don’t use dashboards and we give you a content calendar as asset libraries, KPI, dashboards, engagement connections, tracker. We’ll give you all the tools that you need in order for you to properly measure.

[00:08:24] And once you properly measure and you have your dashboards, then you can start taking the right actions. And there are three actions that are more important than any other actions on social media. Most people are logging into LinkedIn or Facebook, and they’re just on the feed all day. They’re just looking at the stuff pretty much, but there are specific activities that generate hundreds of thousands of dollars for my agency and also for the clients that we teach inside the course that most people don’t know how to get that visibility. So the first step is getting visibility, getting people to know you. The second step is getting credibility, figuring out, Okay, how do you get people to trust you? Really trust you. Want to take a call from you. Want to build a relationship with you. And want to send you clients.

[00:09:05] And then the third step is how do you actually get people on the phone. What’s the best method of outreach where you don’t get rejected and instead you get accepted? That’s what you want. Do you want to go from rejection to being accepted and being welcomed into people’s world? So how do you do that? So we have a three-step process called greening, feeding and meeting, and we teach you how to get on the phone with almost anybody.

[00:09:27] Mike: [00:09:27] That’s sick, dude. Greening, feeding, and meeting. Yeah. Yeah. Well, you know, I’m going to be looking this thing up for sure. But, you’re also an author. You’ve written like three books. 

[00:09:39] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:09:39] The latest, I’m writing a new book called High Energy Purpose: How to be 100% “in” on your life.

[00:09:44] Mike: [00:09:44] I’ll need to know when that one comes out, too. I mean, as it is, I want to go read the one of losing 95 pounds. 

[00:09:51] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:09:51] Most people think that when you eat, you have more energy, but then forget that last Thanksgiving and Thanksgiving, how much energy they had after they stuffed their face. They actually got into a food coma, so they didn’t actually have more energy. They actually lost all their energy. The digestive system, it’s the most intense system in your body, most energy intensive system. So when you’re eating, you’re actually losing energy and you’re what you’re storing is something called potential energy. And most of us, we eat more than we can burn off in one day. So we end up having storages of that energy, which turns into fat. 

[00:10:25] Mike: [00:10:25] Does that have anything to do with us? Sitting down, doing podcasts all day? 

[00:10:28] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:10:28] Well, you could also be standing up and doing podcasts. 

[00:10:32] Mike: [00:10:32] Well, yeah, that’s true. I should try that one day.

[00:10:35]Joe Apfelbaum: [00:10:35] So the idea is figuring out, Okay, on a scale of 1 to 10, what’s your energy level right now? Do you have high energy? Do you have low energy? And if you want to increase your level of energy, there are steps that I take people through. For example, a 5% drop in hydration is a 30% drop in energy. Your body, your brain is mostly water, and earth is mostly water. So understanding how much water did you drink today?

[00:11:01] Mike: [00:11:01] Even though I have coffee, I always have at least one or two of these sitting next to it. 

[00:11:06] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:11:06] Okay, good. So making sure that you have enough water each day is really important for your energy levels. The next thing you want to consider is your electrolytes, right? Understanding what those are, and you want to consider what the energy wasters are in terms of the types of foods. 

[00:11:19] Mike: [00:11:19] That’s a huge one. Most people don’t know that there are categories of food. There’s a few gurus running around right now going, you should eat this, and this is the best for fat burning. And I’m like, yeah, that’s not all of it, bro. 

[00:11:33] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:11:33] And it’s mainly what you stay away from. Not so much what you eat. Some people say, Oh, eat this and you’ll burn fat. No, it’s more about staying away from foods that are actually making your metabolism go slower and clogging up your system and not allowing you to properly process nutrients. So things like sugar, flour, rice, potatoes, pasta, like things like that.

[00:11:52] Mike: [00:11:52] All the complex carbs that you just don’t need to be eating, 

[00:11:56] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:11:56] Unless you’re running a marathon. If you’re running a marathon, you might need that, but you’re not running a marathon. You’re sitting around, watching Netflix or whatever you’re doing or working. So, instead of eating those, figure out other things that you can enjoy, like salad, other things that you could enjoy, like proteins, that you’re not going to clog up your whole system and wonder how, why am I getting fat? Or why am I maintaining my fat? Stop, eating burgers and pizza. 

[00:12:20] Mike: [00:12:20] Stop eating French fries. And. Awesome Man, I’m being attacked and called out here left and right. You need to stop.

[00:12:22] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:12:22]  So, if we really want to lose weight, I tell somebody to first set a 90 day goal. I write this in the book to set a 90 day goal. If somebody is like, Oh, I’m 250 pounds right now. And I want to get to one 40. I was like, okay, I know you want to get to.

[00:12:40] Mike: [00:12:40] In 90 days? Ooh, buddy. 

[00:12:43] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:12:43] No, he doesn’t even say 90 days. He’s like, I want to get to 140. So I say, let’s forget about 140 for now. How much weight can you lose in 90 days? You know, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. That’s the reality of it. How much do I want? I want to lose 50 pounds in 90 days. I was like, that’s not possible. I said, let’s, let’s set a goal to lose one pound per week. He’s like really? That’s it only one pump where we got kind of like, not worth it. And that’s when the race, the race you win at one step at a time. He’s like, so to lose a hundred pounds, I’m going to take a hundred weeks. I was like, yeah, we’ll take it to a year’s but you’ll keep it off for the next 10. 

[00:13:17] Mike: [00:13:17] Yep. You’re not going to have it sitting there waiting to be filled up again from the fast shot that you just tried to pull off. Now, I used to be a nutritionist as a trainer years ago. As a reference to the complex carbs thing, when we used to do legs, legs was pasta day. I mean, literally a couple pounds. And then we go hit the gym and go bang out 1300 pound legs, but like presses don’t ask me why that was just something we did.

[00:13:41] But, you saw it, you saw the legs blew up like balloons from having all those carbs ready to go. And then, you know, still had to hit the cardio after that was done. You weren’t getting off just because you went heavy. You still had to go finish it off and go burn off the rest of it.

[00:13:58] And because of that, we maintain, you know, 12% body fat. It was all right. It was a daily occurrence, but you’re right. You can’t be dumping tons of energy into your body and then going, yeah, I should be fine. Uh, no, that’s not how it works. It never has. So, it sounds like you got you. I definitely want to read the book.

[00:14:16] Bruh. That’s 15 minutes. We got to take a quick 30 seconds. And when we come back, we’re gonna talk a little bit about motivations and inspiration, things that move you, um, which I’m fairly sure we’re going to be hearing more about helping entrepreneurs, because it just sounds like a total passion. So, 30 seconds guys, and we’ll be right back. 

[00:14:40] We’re back here at Java Chat with Joe Apfelbaum and talking about the joys of entrepreneurship and how to keep high energy. And that’s kind of funny. In his book High Energy Secrets, he really talks about how to do it, right. Things to stay away from stuff like that.

[00:14:54] We were just kind of on the break, a short little stint we were talking about, it’s funny how much people actually know this stuff, but they won’t execute. And I was like, you know, where’s the motivation, inspiration to get stuff done. And that’s actually the second section of all of our stuff. So I wanted to chat a little bit about that. Like, you’ve read a ton of books. Had some good mentors. What are the things that moved you back then? What moves you now? I mean like what really gets you grinding? Like you want to go? 

[00:15:24] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:15:24] Yeah, for me, it’s like, it used to be making money. Like that would excite me a lot. I want to be financially free. I want to make money, but after you make a certain amount of money and you have a certain level of success, you realize making more is not going to make you actually happier. So, you know, once you get to that level of financial success, now it’s about how do you make a difference for other people?

[00:15:47] And there’s no better gift than giving. Giving is the best gift. So, you know, it’s one thing to give people money. It’s another thing to give people the ability for them to make money for them to be able to live a life of their dreams. I just signed up a new student to our masterclass and to our coaching community. We had a conversation and I asked her how much money do you want to make? And she’s like, as much as possible. And then we had that conversation of as much as possible. It’s not a number. And then she said, you know what? I don’t know. I don’t have a number, but like if I made 70K, I’d be really happy.

[00:16:22] So I said, so you do have a number, you’re just afraid to settle for that number because you are comparing yourself to other people or you’re afraid you might not hit it or whatever it is, because I never really thought about that. But the truth is I might be afraid to pick a number. But I said, now that you picked the number and now you’re making it real, I’d go out and make it real.

[00:16:38] Now you have the ability to make it real, and I said, how many clients do you need in order to make it real? So she’s like, I never did the math, but that’s a good question. I was like, it’s not a good question. It’s a great question. Yeah, let’s do the math. So we started doing the math and it turns out showing these 10 clients at $300 a month or something.

[00:16:54] Yeah. And I was like, what? You just need 10 clients at $300 a month and you can achieve that. Or 20 clients at 300 or 10 clients at 600. And she’s like, yeah, that’s crazy how few clients I need and I can make this happen. And I was like, absolutely, you can make this happen. And you will make this happen now that you have the tools to do it.

[00:17:15] And she’s like, thank you. I already feel, I really feel so much closer to my goal because now I have a clear path. So that’s what brings me motivation. The clarity that I could provide for other people, clarity brings motivation. And for me, other people’s clarity, the fact that I can help other people have clarity, help people create breakthroughs in their life, makes me alive, makes me excited. It makes me passionate. There’s so many people that need help. And my goal is to help 1000 hungry entrepreneurs. Go from frustration to motivation. That’s what I want to do. 

[00:17:48] Mike: [00:17:48] You just hit the word I was just about to ask you about, and it just, it’s an interesting term to me. You’ve created this cool thing called mojo ovation. How did you come up with it? And what is it about?

[00:18:02] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:18:02] Most people want to feel motivated. But feeling motivated is something that doesn’t last very long, right? It’s like a bat. You need to take it every day. You need to get that. 

[00:18:14] Mike: [00:18:14] You go to a Tony Robbins event, you go home and all of a sudden back to normal.

[00:18:19] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:18:19] Right. Well, it might last a few days. Eventually, it wears off. So how do you really make it part of who you are. Somebody once asked me, Joe, how do I get more of Joe? How do I get mojo? And I said, the way that you get mojo, I think we really are finding out who you really are. The more you can find what your mojo is, the more you can find out who you really are, and you can live that. Then you start feeling clear. You don’t, you don’t feel like you have to put up a fake show anymore. You feel like you’re with your, with your best friend, no matter who you’re with. And that’s a pretty good feeling. If you can live your life with full on enthusiasm, with full on enjoyment, not worried that other people will judge you.

[00:19:01] And if they do judge, you, you realize that they’re really judging themselves, not worried about the opinions of other people, because the opinions of other people or frankly, none of your business, they are, they’re none of your business. So, take a step back from needing to please everyone from being a people pleaser, and instead start living the life you want to live.

[00:19:19] And when you do that and you start seeing progress every day, whether you want to do public speaking, whether you want to learn how to rap, whether you like dancing, whether you want to build a multi-million dollar business or do art or whatever you want to do, if you can do that and be happy. And feel enjoyment and see progress and help other people and make a difference and keep learning and growing.

[00:19:42] That’s what life’s about. A couple of years ago, I asked myself, What do I really want out of life? And one of my answers was I want to feel vitality. I want to feel alive. There are times that I feel alive and there are times that I feel dead. And if I’m living, I might as well be alive. So, how do I feel that feeling of being alive?

[00:20:01] And it has to do with your state of being right out of your state at any given moment, based on your thoughts and your emotions, which are caused by your thoughts. You might say, what are you talking about when I get angry? It’s not because of my thoughts. Yes, it is. Absolutely because of a thought.

[00:20:15] Your thoughts evoke emotions. So if you can be with your thoughts and not allow your thoughts to make you be somebody else and a study, you can figure out how do I channel that to get, to enjoy a moment, to get to high energy, to get to peace, to get to tranquility, to get to more power, then you’ll be able to have more influence on yourself and on the people around.

[00:20:37] Mike: [00:20:37] Rabbit hole, master Ugue. If you’re, if you remember Kung Fu Panda, the whole thing about inner peace. And that whole thing is: it’s interesting. I did martial arts when I was younger, and one of the things that my elder brothers and my master used to teach me is when you do meditation, and one of the things you have to learn how to do is how to allow a thought to pass.

[00:21:02] And to me as a young kid, I had no freaking clue what that meant. You know, it’s like, you’re gonna, you’re gonna clear your mind and things are still gonna come up. Your brain doesn’t stop working. Things are still gonna come up. When they come up, you look at them, you acknowledge them for what they are and you let them go.

[00:21:17] And I said, Well, what if I can’t let them go. He says, then you have a problem with that thought. You need to deal with it. I’m like, well, what if I don’t know how to deal with it? This is a lie. You know exactly how to deal with it. You just choose not to. Like you said, everything comes off of a thought. Thoughts become things you couldn’t have nailed it harder for me there, brother. I appreciate it. Yeah. That’s really cool. 

[00:21:38] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:21:38] There’s a saying that can’t lives on won’t street? 

[00:21:41] Mike: [00:21:41] That’s exactly correct. I got to write that one down. So in the midst of all of this, there had to be some major things you had to overcome, like your own personal life. What were they in? How did you do it? 

[00:21:57] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:21:57] Well, there are three major fears that I personally had that I had to overcome in order for me to be able to achieve a certain level of completeness. I won’t even say success. No, I got you thinking about being, feeling complete, feeling happy with who I am and satisfied and just being able to show up and not worry about the opinions of other people and those three fears. The first one was the fear of social media or putting myself out there and just expressing myself publicly. The second fear was the fear of public speaking, which means being able to get up in front of a crowd of people.

[00:22:33] Or even in front of a half, a dozen people and just have a conversation with them naturally. And then the third thing that I feared and that I had to overcome was the fear of networking, of relationship building, with strangers. Because as a child, I was always taught, stay away from who? Strangers. Stay away from strangers because things can get— 

[00:22:58] Mike: [00:22:58] Here we go. Here it comes. Yes. 

[00:23:02] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:23:02] So, if you really want to be able to build relationships, think about it. Everyone in your life was always a stranger. Your mother was a stranger. At one point, there was a stranger. Your siblings were strangers. Everybody’s a stranger. Your neighbor was a stranger. Your best friend was once a stranger. And so learning how to network and build relationships, build rapport with people, build trust with people is how you’re going to get. Influence and success in life. And so it’s a skill, it’s a soft skill that you have to learn how to do, which you don’t get. You don’t get taught that in school. No one teaches you how to do that. 

[00:23:33] Mike: [00:23:33] Well, that kind of bothers me that that doesn’t happen. I mean, you would think that that would be one of the first things that’s taught to our youth. There are some bad people out there, but for the most part, they’re just strangers. 

[00:23:48] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:23:48] I don’t think there are bad people either. There are people that are hurt. Hurt people, hurt people. But you know, we’re not judging anybody. There are no bad people. It’s just about, you know, some people are hurt and they end up hurting others when they’re hurt. 

[00:24:04] And so, you know, at the end of the day, we’re all after getting our needs met.  And so what are your needs? There’s your internal needs and then there’s your external needs. The physical needs that have you think about your needs from that perspective, figuring out what your needs are really, really important. Now, for me, the fear of social media. Overcoming that was a big, big challenge and it was stopping me from being successful online. Like I didn’t have my photo 10 years ago. I had a photo of a cheetah on my Facebook. 

[00:24:40] Mike: [00:24:40] Why the cheetah?

[00:24:41] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:24:41] Because it was one of the fastest running animals and I like to do things fast.

[00:24:45] Mike: [00:24:45] That’s cool. 

[00:24:46] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:24:46] It just resonated with me. Cheetah’s have always resonated with me. And so that’s, that’s basically what I had over there. There were many other fears that I had around social media. You know, what if my content is not good enough, what if I’m going to look stupid? What if I’m going to lose business as a result? What if someone’s going to see something that I did that they weren’t supposed to see or whatever it is, who knows? But ultimately it was all based in fear. So I let go of that and I just started just posting and just accepting myself. It became a lot easier for me to just put myself out there.

[00:25:27] It came through a tremendous amount of repetition, tremendous amount of practice. I have hundreds and hundreds of videos that I posted online or at the beginning I felt super uncomfortable and I was judging myself. And after a while I basically just gave up, gave up surrender to that, surrender to that fear, surrender to that feeling of discomfort. You know, fear stands for false evidence that appears real and often we’ll be afraid of things that are just a fake reality. And so we have to just recognize that it’s going to look real to us, the fear, but it’s not real, especially the emotional stuff. 

[00:25:58] Mike: [00:25:58] I’ve seen some really interesting things that mention, you know, putting out a hundred videos. If, you know, people that are on YouTube that have been on for a long time and you go back to their earlier videos, you’ll see that progression. And you’ll also notice when that switch flips in their head. I’m part of a group on Facebook for YouTube people and they’re all talking and a lot of them are young and like, we’re not sure what to do yet. And all of the veterans are just like, stop worrying about what to do. Just go do. 

[00:26:30] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:26:30] You’re never going to get it right. Perfection is the enemy of action, of just getting things done. And so the second fear or the fear of public speaking, the one that you said you were super interested in.

[00:26:42] Mike: [00:26:42] Because I’m a livewire onstage. You put me on a stage and I might not shut up. That’s that comes from about 15 years of being a musician on the stage for seven days a week. My job was to entertain people. I don’t have a problem with it. And I have complete compassion, empathy for people that can’t, or haven’t been able to. We kind of talked a little bit about that too, so, yeah, please. How did you overcome it? 

[00:27:05] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:27:05] Yeah, 90% of people are afraid of public speaking because they’re ashamed. They’re shy, and shyness comes from fear of rejection. That’s really the end of the day that I’m not enough, then I’m going to be looked stupid and I’m going to be an idiot, all this other stuff. And so recognizing that you have a tremendous amount of fear of rejection, fear of failure, fear of rejection of you realizing that, um, and taking a step back and asking yourself, okay, I have a tremendous amount of fear of rejection, fear of failure.

[00:27:34] That’s okay. Now, what, what am I going to do about this? I’m going to keep my fair, or am I going to learn how to take action anyway, that’s really the idea. So preparation was one of the things that I learned is very, very helpful when you know your material so well that you don’t have to literally even think of your material.

[00:27:55] The material just appears itself, or you’re talking about a concept that, you know, backwards and forwards. Then, the fear will often melt away the initial fear of getting up there and knowing where to start. And also the beginning, you’re always going to be a little scared and after you get warmed up, things will just, you’ll forget that you’re even there and you’ll become one with the audience. So, that’s really the key is to get to that place more often. And then, you know, once you break the ice, it’s always difficult to break the ice. It’s always difficult to run the first half a mile. It’s always difficult to get started, but once you’re started, you’ll realize how alive it makes you.

[00:28:32] And you’ll see that there are more benefits than the other side. And then just learning techniques, watching self-talk, seeing what you are, the words that you use that make that make you. Feel more comfortable like, you know, I do say “Um” because it is also still something natural that people want to hear.

[00:28:52] I use the word stuff. I use the word, basically. These are all filler words that we use when we’re trying to make the audience connect with us and make them feel like we’re really human. Because if you were completely polished all the time, people would look at you. Like you’re a walking commercial, pretty much the fact that you say, “um,” the fact that you say, “you know,” right?

[00:29:15] The fact that you say “so,” or “like,” or “basically,” or any of these words, those are great words to make you seem real to people because that’s how people talk. Some people think, Oh, I need to remove them and make sure I’m polished and perfect and everything. Can I say you couldn’t be that way and work hard if that’s your goal.

[00:29:35] Mike: [00:29:35] If it’s also not you though, I mean, what then is the point you’re not being authentic and people appreciate that a lot more than you being polished? If it’s a professional presentation?

[00:29:45] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:29:45] Having typos is being a slob. So do the preparation in order for you to know the material really well, but don’t be hard on yourself or judge yourself too much. If you give an “um,” or an “oh” or a right, or a sow or any of those that would help you feel more comfortable. 

[00:30:06] Mike: [00:30:06] Those things actually bring people closer to you, too. Like you said, showing your vulnerability, showing your humanness allows their humanness to feel like Oh, he’s talking to me. They’re actually saying something, and I can get that. It makes it easier, continues breaking the ice, as you mentioned because nobody’s ever completely ice broken until they’re really into you. And you’ll feel that, like you said, you feel it.

[00:30:30] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:30:30] The moment it happens the easiest way to overcome fear is just to take action. So I started just doing lots of talks with smaller groups of people, and then eventually the groups got bigger. And then before you know it, I became really good at it because I realized that the audience is often more afraid of me than I’m afraid of them.

[00:30:48] Mike: [00:30:48] Now was that during the time that you got hired by Google?

[00:30:51] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:30:51] Yeah. Getting hired by Google to become a certified Google trainer was my impetus to even know that I was afraid of public speaking, because the thing about air is that you don’t even know that you’re afraid of it until you try it. And you’re never going to try it because you have all these excuses, like my excuse was I’m a private person. I don’t like doing speeches, not because I’m afraid. I can do it if I really want to, but I’m not doing it because I have this value thing I don’t like showing off. And, I’m private and then when Google hired me, I was like, Oh, what is going on? So I realized that I really want to do this now, but I can’t. I always thought that I could, but I realized now that I can’t. When I try to do it, I shake physical aching and breathing heavy. And like, my heart’s about to fall out of my chest. Why? So I did the research, hired the mentors, the coaches took the courses, read the books, and I learned exactly how to do it. I implemented it and I got over it. 

[00:31:49] Mike: [00:31:49] It’s interesting to see that it just takes a little bit of knowledge in order to eliminate fear. As you mentioned the acronym. Just taking those little actions. 

[00:32:00] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:32:00] Action is the key to overcoming fear. Courage is action in spite of fear. You don’t need courage if you don’t have fear. So courage is action in spite of fear, taking action even though you’re afraid, even though you’re unsure, even though you think you might fail, but you still do it. That’s what takes courage. So I say, if you’re afraid of something and you still want to do it, have courage in that way.

[00:32:23] Mike: [00:32:23] You had one more fear of networking.

[00:32:26] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:32:26] Yeah. So fear of networking is a fear of strangers, a fear of getting rejected by people. The fear of not being enough for the world around you. And so for me, I remember my first networking event that I went to. I was at a Chamber of Commerce event in Manhattan. There are like a hundred people in a room. Everything was buzzing. I walked in. I’m like, I gotta get out of here, but the elevator wasn’t coming back.

[00:32:52] Mike: [00:32:52] You were trapped. 

[00:32:54] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:32:54] I think it was the guy by the book who sold insurance. And he’s like, it looks like your new here. I was like, yeah. He’s like, I’ve been doing this for awhile. Just follow what I do. I said, okay, what? He’s like, you got business cards? I said, yeah. I pulled out my business cards. He said, just go give your business card out to everybody. And then you could leave. I was like, wow, that sounds easy. I walked over to every person in the room and gave them all my business cards and people were looking, give me these dirty looks like, what the hell are you doing?

[00:33:19] Why are you giving me this? We didn’t even talk yet. But I just did it. I went around, I did my duty. It was uncomfortable. I was afraid but I did it anyway. I was like, this is terrible. I can’t believe it. I’m so embarrassed. I wanted to give up on networking. I was like, networking doesn’t work. This is stupid. No one’s ever going to call me back. Nobody called me back. But you know, what I learned was that I don’t know how to network and the same thing, like public speaking. If you lack preparation, you’re going to feel uncomfortable. It’s anything with social media.

[00:33:50] If you don’t know how to use a tool, you’re going to be uncomfortable with the tool. You don’t spend time with it either. Someone said, Joe, I’m afraid of LinkedIn. I said, how much time did he spend with LinkedIn? They said, no. I was like, that’s how you’re afraid because you never use it. So it’s the unknown, the fear of the unknown.

[00:34:01] Right? So, um, I always tell people, listen, if you want to overcome your fear of networking, you need to have the right strategy. You need to have the right skills to do it. So I read the books, took the courses, hired the mentors, and I learned how to network. And I started closing deals that were 10 to 30 times bigger than the deals I was closing just from cold calling.

[00:34:25] Mike: [00:34:25] Who were some of your mentors? I’m curious for that. 

[00:34:29] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:34:29] So for me, I hired all types of people that supported me through my journey. The people that I really look up to are kind of like people like Tony Robbins, you mentioned him, Tony Robbins. So I would consider him a mentor or read all his books, did all his courses, went through all this stuff. That’s very, very powerful. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of Dale Carnegie, who hasn’t had a win with influential people. So I consider him a mentor of mine. 

[00:34:56] Mike: [00:34:56] You realize that’s the original sales manual.

[00:34:58] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:34:58] Yeah, yeah, yeah. Very, very powerful stuff. So a lot of the stuff he teaches is very simple. You think, you know them all, and that was the best part you have to study the most. Yeah.

[00:35:08]Mike: [00:35:08] That’s the best part about it is it was made very simple. That’s cool. There’s a guide that I remember reading that wrote an article. I believe it was fraud, and he was a master networker somewhere in Manhattan. So I tried to remember his name so I could see if you ever met him or know him, but his whole thing about icebreakers because networking is classic. What do you do? And he’s like, yeah, I don’t tell people out the gate, what I do. One of his statements is I try to get other people to invite me to their place for dinner.

[00:35:43]Joe Apfelbaum: [00:35:43] I love that. A little creepy, but I liked it. 

[00:35:46] Mike: [00:35:46] Yeah. I mean, it’d really stump people. Like what? I mean, it’s way out in left field, obviously. No, one’s expecting it. And then, you know, the next question is coming well, how does that work? You got the conversation, but he does, you know, slightly unconventional things, but it was how to open a conversation. It was pretty cool. 

[00:36:08] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:36:08] Yeah. Building rapport is a key. 

[00:36:10] Mike: [00:36:10] Absolutely. Absolutely. Hey guys, I want to take one more 30 second break. We’re going to come back. I’m going to talk with Joe about where he’s headed, what he’s doing and you know, with everything, with Evyrgreen, with Ajax and all that stuff. So we’ll be back in just another 30 seconds. 

[00:36:23] Hey guys, back here. Java Chat and Coffee With Mike sitting here with Joe. Apfelbaum the CEO, author, speaker. Man, the guy’s just everything. Tell me, how does everything come together when you finally figure it out?

[00:36:39] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:36:39] Well, the key is making sure that you create magic in your life. So if you want to be effective, not just efficient, but effective every single day. Stephen Covey wrote a book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. And I said that there are seven habits. Yes, but what are the seven reminders? What are the things that you need to remember to do every single day in order for you to live a life of purpose, live a life of meaning.

[00:37:08] Make sure that you have everything that you need at your fingertips every single day. And the first thing I always tell people is number one is you have to measure because what gets measured gets done. Most people don’t measure. If you’re not going to measure it, you’re not going to improve it. So ask yourself, what are the things in my life that I’m measuring? Where attention goes, energy flows and the things that you’re measuring are the things that you’re giving attention to?

[00:37:36] So, what are you, what are you measuring? The next thing that I always tell people is to think about is how much water are you drinking? It’s a reminder that we need to have every single day, because most people are grossly dehydrated and a 5% drop in hydration is a 30% drop in energy. If you want to get motivated, you first have to get hydrated. Third thing I always tell people to think about is your level of gratitude. Most people are expecting things. 

[00:38:04] Mike: [00:38:04] That’s a lot missing in that these days I’ve noticed. 

[00:38:08] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:38:08] Yeah. So people have expectations. And when I say trade your expectations for appreciation, and then your life changes right away because you’re changing your level of focus. You’re going from focusing on what’s in it for me to focusing on, wow. Look at all the blessings that I have. And the more that you focus on that, like you said before, thoughts are things, the more you’re going to get those things because you attract what you, what you appreciate, not what you expect.

[00:38:33] You attract what you feel and appreciate feeling grateful for the people in your life and for all the great things that we have. The next thing is communication. Most people are not taking the time to journal the community with themselves, to communicate with other people, to express themselves, to have that self-expression, they build up the energy inside and then they ended up just basically feeling sad or feeling lonely or feeling frustrated because they’re not properly communicating and figuring out what their needs are and what needs to happen in their life.

[00:39:05] So, the first thing is obviously measure. The second thing is water, then it’s gratitude. And then it’s communication. The next thing you want to do is thinking about learning. Most people are not learning. They’re not sitting there and reading on a regular basis. I’m reading a book now called boundaries by how to create boundaries.

[00:39:28] And, you know, just in general, I’m always reading. I always have a book with me. I’m always learning more. I’m always taking a course. I’m always watching Ted talks or listening to the blink app. I’m always trying to learn something because learning is progress and progress equals happiness. So ask yourself each day.

[00:39:44] Are you continuously learning that’s number five, number six, as a reminder is a contribution. What does contribution mean? How are you helping other people? Because if it’s all about you, then what’s, why is life, you know, why is life worth living if it’s just for you? Most people they’re not going to get satisfied no matter how much they get until they start to give.

[00:40:05] So are you living a givers mindset? Are you helping people? And I’m not just talking about money, I’m talking about supporting other people with your skills, with your unique abilities or why all this stuff. And then finally, the last one is being present. Most people are either worried about the past or concerned about the future, worrying about what happened.

[00:40:25] They’re resentful, they’re angry, they’re anxious about something that happened. Or they’re afraid that something in the future might not have, and for them, or they’re trying to control things that are outside of their control. The only thing that you can really control is how you feel. I think right now, how you feel right now, where your focus is, and if your focus is not on the present moment. If you’re not aware of your breath, if you’re not aware of where you are right now and you’re just living in your ego because the ego thrives on being in the past or in the future, instead of being fully present and fully now, then you’re missing out on a massive opportunity to tap into something that’s bigger than you.

[00:41:03] And you’re not going to be more empowered than you’re not going to have all that energy that’s available to you when you are fully present fully in, fully on. And that’s the book that I’m writing, High Energy Purpose. How to be a hundred percent in wherever you are at any given time. So I’m excited about these seven reminders, which are measured. Water, gratitude, communication, learning contribution, and then being present. And if you can do those things every day, you will get motivated all day.

[00:41:39] Mike: [00:41:39] That last one is one that I harp on a lot, too. Being present is something that took me a while to get used to because we’ve all had our challenges in the past, no matter what they are. And no one’s exempt. And then of course there’s the whole, it goes back to master Ugue. “Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today’s the present. That’s why today’s a gift. That’s why they call it the present.” I also learned more about that when I was learning about when I was being a business etiquette trainer presence matters most, if you ever want to be empathetic, compassionate, and things of that nature and have empathy for others, you can’t be looking at what was you can’t be looking what is to be. You can only look at what is right now. And there you can find your place to support or be that building block or be that, you know, that contributor.

[00:42:34] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:42:34] And the key is the keyword. Creating space for other people is really important. 

[00:42:39] Mike: [00:42:39] Yeah. Being present is giving them space to be them and allowing that. And then, being there, being present. Do you need me to be here as a  listening piece? Or do you need me to be here as part listening, part fixed? Or do you want to fix it? What do you need? I’m here for you. It took me years to get that one because, you know, as guys we love to fix shit, we’re happy to pick up a tool and start banging on shit.

[00:43:08] We’re horrible like that, but at the same time, we also can evolve, which you have denoted very well by those seven things. So you’re doing all of this stuff. Now you’re writing this new book. I really want to know when that book comes out. So we’ll have to stay in touch. What’s in the future for you, for Ajax? What next?

[00:43:38]Joe Apfelbaum: [00:43:38] So my goal is to help 1000 hungry entrepreneurs go from frustration to motivation and, Ajax Union, we do marketing for companies. In Evyrgreen, we educate people on how to do it themselves. So if somebody wants to learn how to leverage LinkedIn, how to set their goals, how to do sales, how to grow their business. Evyrgreen is going to be a source to teach you practical business. It gives you real business results, practical skills that give you real business results 

[00:44:05] Ajax Union is a B2B marketing agency. We built funnels for companies. So we’re going to continue to grow profitably, and we’re going to build Evyrgreen to serve thousands of people to make a difference in people’s lives and to help people be able to know that they can do it. Whether they want to build their own business, whether they want to find a job, whether they want to be able to leave a legacy and create a presence for themselves online with a group of people that they attract themselves is very powerful. Building a network, I’ve been fortunate enough to learn how to do these things. And now I have the honor and the privilege to be able to serve other people.

[00:44:48] Mike: [00:44:48] That’s sweet. That’s amazing. Wow. We hit it, bro. We’re at that point. This has been wonderfully enlightening and at the same time for me, there’s you threw in quite a few great refreshers, so really want to thank you for sharing your wisdom and your insights with us here at Java Chat. I’m quite sure that a lot of our listeners would like to find you, where can they find you and follow?

[00:45:13] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:45:13] Yeah. The easiest way to find me is you can search my name on Google and there’s lots of resources about me, or you can go on LinkedIn. If you go to, it takes you right to my URL. Read my about section. I have a lot of great information there and you can connect with me or follow me. I you connect with me, just mention the podcast.

[00:45:33] And this way, I know who you are. I’ve over a thousand people waiting to connect with me on LinkedIn. So I just want to make sure that I know who I’m connecting with. Um, I don’t want to connect with random strangers. So, my goal is to connect with you, build a relationship with you, learn about you and see how I can add value to your life.

[00:45:49] Mike: [00:45:49] And by the way, guys, as you know, as usual, we always put all the links down below. So we’ll take that and put it in the comments. And of course, if you have any questions, feel free. Once we see them, we’ll pass them over to Joe and he can get back to you at his convenience. Feel free to reach out to him directly, as he said, easy to find them.

[00:46:06] You guys know about Evyrgreen. E V Y R G R E E In case you’re looking for education, I know I’m going to go check that out, cause any resources are good. I’ll take anything that anybody’s got. Ajax Union: if you’re in need of marketing services, front of building for a B2B scenario, feel free to reach out to them there.

[00:46:25] You guys, you know how we love this. We love every one of you. And we’re very thankful for all of you that watch that. Listen, if you’re watching on YouTube, don’t forget to hit the subscribe button, then that little bell that tells you what the next one’s coming up and you don’t want to miss out on guys like this, that bring the magic.

[00:46:44] I got to go find that soundboard now. That’s awesome. For those of you that are listening to us on new podcast platforms, thank you. Again, feel free to download and subscribe there. If you’re on Anchor, listening to us there, you can support us. Feel free to make a donation; every bit helps. We’re small, but we’re growing and we’re getting there.

[00:47:01] And we’re planning on being huge as a goal to have at least a thousand active listeners. So far, each of our podcasts by the time I believe we targeted February and March next year. Kind of a lofty goal, but we’re after it .We’re getting good guys like Joe here, coming on and sharing their wisdom and knowledge. So stay up, stay safe, stay healthy and live for Joe and myself, Coffee With Mike, ciao for now. 

[00:47:30] Joe Apfelbaum: [00:47:30] Bye, everyone.

[00:47:36] Intro: [00:47:36]  Information on Java Chat visit You’ve been listening to @CoffeeWithMike on Java Chat. Tune in weekly to this podcast. For the next episode, you can also download or subscribe today on your favorite podcast platform. A production of Oasis Media Group, LLC. Located in Las Vegas, Nevada. Copyright 2019. All rights reserved.

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