173 JJ Flizanes: Pivoting to Accelerate Business Growth

JJ Flizanes is an inspiring entrepreneur and podcaster who has followed her inner voice to evolve her business – and she shares how openness to business transformation is paying off. An Empowerment Strategist, director of Invisible Fitness, and host of several podcasts including Fit 2 Love and Spirit, Purpose & Energy, JJ is proving every day that transformation IS about mind, body AND spirit.

Melinda Wittstock:         JJ, welcome again to Wings.

JJ Flizanes:                          Thanks Melinda. It’s a pleasure to be here. I love working with you and your brand and with Wings because I think it’s such a important community to be a part of, women sort of helping and supporting women on this business journey and really utilizing all of our skills to come together and help each other thrive and fly.

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh, thank you so much and what a journey it is. I’m so eager to talk to you because I’ve watched you reinvent yourself as your brand has really grown and changed. So I’m really keen to get the update on where you’re going and how you’ve moved and how you’ve really shifted your brand.

JJ Flizanes:                          Well, when we last spoke, it was right before the beginning of my new sort of stepping into the world in a new way and taking the fitness piece and adding on the spirit peace, adding on the psychological piece, adding on the mindfulness and the meditation and really wrapping that together at a mind, body, soul connection with my first event called the releasing what weighs you down and that was in January. Since we had spoken before, I did the event and I have now done the event and now I’m onto my next event and what’s been really amazing has been stepping into an unknown territory in a way. Right. Coming out and saying, “I’ve never done this before.” Even though I know what I want to talk about and what I want to do and the kind of journey I want to take you on, but I have never done … I’ve never stepped into this in this kind of way before.

So it was a really enlightening and enriching experience on so many levels and it was such an honor to get to meet and to commune with people from my show in terms of the guests, people who listen to the show and really, really bring my community out from behind the mic and from behind the earphones and behind the cars and sitting us in the same room together so that, if nothing else, was so powerful because as I went around the room and asked people to share who they were and why they were there and where they came from and how they heard about the event, I mean 99% of them were my podcasts. That in itself was such a validation to the work that I’ve been doing. I mean, I get emails a couple times a week from people all over the globe, mostly women who reach out to tell me how my show has touched them.

But to backtrack into in terms of what you said, where have I come from, what’s going on now, before I stepped out to do this event, I had taken my current brand which was Fit2Love and subdivided it into the different themes that Fit2Love covered and rebranded. So you’re talking about pivoting and while I didn’t do it in exact 180 pivot, I kind of … I did a test and I spread everything out in its proper category and wanted to see maybe I don’t have a handle. I went into the whole podcasting world to be quite honest as a test. I said, “What can I do?” When I first learned about podcasting, I thought, “What could I do for two years and not have to earn any money?” Because when I heard the person who shared with me about his journey with podcasts, he made no money in the first two years.

So I thought, okay, it wasn’t about money making for me at the time. It was about testing my content and it was about getting the content out there because I had been bubbling over with content for so many years. I didn’t have an outlet. I think a lot of people don’t realize that, especially for women, but men too, a lot of the depression people feel as actually repression. It’s that we’re holding onto things that we’re not sharing because we don’t either have an outlet or permission to do it. Not that I was depressed, I wasn’t depressed, I was frustrated. I was frustrated and feeling like, “Oh my God, I just want it,” and I wasn’t a blogger. Really, I’m a writer, but I don’t sit down and I don’t have … It doesn’t make me feel good. Words of affirmation are one of my top loved languages. It doesn’t make me feel good to sit down and just write and not share. I need to talk. I’m a speaker, I’m a performer, I’m a singer. I talk through my stuff.

So podcasting became the initial, “Oh my God, that’s what I’m going to do. That’s a position, that’s a place where I can unload all my different ideas and thoughts and test things out.” So I did that test and when the Fit2Love brand wasn’t strong enough, I mean I would get sales and I would get calls and I would get emails and  I had a following and my download numbers were fine, but nobody was reaching through to me with like a burning, “Oh my God, this is amazing,” all the time. What happened when I split it up into six different shows and branded each different theme, each different day of the week that I was currently doing as its own brand, I really surrendered to the idea that I was ready to hear whatever I was ready to hear.

I wanted to know where am I supposed to show up in the world. I have a lot of different skillsets and gifts and talents and I can do a lot of things and I’m good at a lot of things so and that’s sometimes is a pain in the butt, right? Because then you’re torn to think, “Well, should I do it? Because I can and I’m good at it,” but it makes it … It waters down the true leverage and connection and even purpose that you’re here to provide. So when I split up the shows, spirit, purpose, and energy, which was the first show that I rebranded and start and published right away because it had no funnel, it had no products, it had no event, it had no lead generation. It had nothing. It literally was the only day of the week that I was doing because I … It was my guilty pleasure. It was what I love. I thought I’m going to talk about this and when it was Fit2Love.

If people don’t want to listen to it, I won’t care because I have five other days of the week that they can watch or listen to and satisfy them. If I attract any weirdoes like me who want to listen to spirit, to the freedom Friday is what it was, the freedom Fridays then cool. But if not, I honestly didn’t care. So when I put it out, I’ll never forget, I put it out and all the sudden it skyrocketed and I got emails constantly. Then I decided to create, I mean, everything was just sort of lead in one thing after the other and then created a lead generation, but it really wasn’t for that reason. It was because I needed support. I wanted to have my own accountability for my own spiritual practices for vibration and energy and manifestation.

I did it with a small test group of friends. Then January of 2017, I thought let me extend this into the community and put an ad on the show and see what happens. Lo and behold, people were excited and it was a great way to again pull people from the podcast into a stronger community where they could see each other and talk to each other and we were supporting each other and doing things. So I think what is super, what’s been really fun about this journey for me in stepping into this new place, the events, I don’t come at things anymore from a purely business perspective. I mean, I really never have. I mean, have you really ever just chase the money for the money only in something you hate doing?

Melinda Wittstock:         I, like you, succeed when I’m doing something that’s really from my heart.

JJ Flizanes:                          I think it’s very a woman thing, right? I don’t know many women, I’m sure there are some though that literally just chase the money doing something you really don’t care for at all and can thrive in that arena. I mean-

Melinda Wittstock:         For a time. I think for a time. I mean, there have been so many women that I’ve had on this podcast and interviewed for my book. I mean hundreds now, who all talk about perhaps having early success on that kind of level, that real drive, like, “I’m just going to get it done. I’m going to move mountains,” and it’s almost willful and they have this tremendous success in their twenties and into their thirties but invariably, they burn out and they go through this transformation or they have some sort of roadblock or some sort of impediment or something goes wrong, either in their health or in their love life or in their business and it sparks personal growth and then they come back and then all those skills that they have, they end up reinventing themselves. Connected with their soul purpose, their heart, where everything is just a lot more integrated or balanced between the sort of masculine and feminine energies.

Now, I think what’s interesting is that younger women are cluing into this a little bit earlier on, like maybe they’ve seen their moms kind of do it the old way and arrive at this conclusion that, yeah, it’s better just to do what you love and so I see a lot of younger, not always, but a lot of younger women in their twenties, kind of getting to that point a little bit faster.

JJ Flizanes:                          Well that’s good because you definitely can burn out very quickly. I probably did it for a very short period of time just to move myself from New York City to California because I had an offer. But in all honesty, I manifested that offer because I didn’t want to move myself and I wanted to be paid to move. So I did manifest it and then when I got it I’m like, “Oh, I don’t like this.” It was a very short period of time, like two months. But even at that point I was very clear I could never sell my soul again. I didn’t care what the price tag was and even today I’m doing some work that I’m enjoying but don’t love but I realized that I could … I mean, you could just keep pumping up the number and it doesn’t … I’m like, “If I don’t do it again, that’s okay.” If you need me to do it again, it’s going to cost three times as much because it’s something that I enjoy but don’t … I’m not super passionate about.

But again, in order to fund other things, sometimes we have to take the skillsets that we have that we’re really good at and leverage them. So when it came to doing this event and really stepping out and feeling called to combine my passions of … It all started, it was all started with the personal training stuff and with fitness and health. But as I learned more, as my education got deeper, I realized that we can’t really be having the conversation of how do I lose weight if I can’t ask you if you’re happy, if I can’t figure out if you use food as an addiction to suppress your feelings or if you are denying yourself because you’re secretly homosexual and you don’t want to come out of the closet and then now using food to repress that.

If you’re not living a truth and I’m not aligning you, then it doesn’t matter what these top level efforts of diet and exercise and calorie reduction and in burning more fat and burning more fuel and calories is going to do for you and it just quickly became this very surface thing I was doing. Which is why I’ve never considered myself part of the fitness industry. I am, but I’m not. I usually get people when they’re at their end of their rope and they’ve given up and they are frustrated and they don’t realize all the intricacies of hormones and hormone balancing and aging and osteoporosis and things that come in with looking at how we maximize our aging and how it doesn’t have to … I mean, I can’t tell you, I’ve been doing this for 20 years and every year in the 20 years I’ve been doing this, somebody when they turned 50 goes, “What happened?”

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh my God.

JJ Flizanes:                          I’m like, “Seriously? Like I knew this when I was 21, how do you not understand what is going on?” Then when it happens to you, you’re like, “Oh my God, I don’t know what just happened.” You had menopause and this is what happens in menopause. You have to know what’s coming. Come on. At some point, maybe not all the details about what happens, but it’s a big conversation. But again, it’s a difference between being in the moment and being forward thinking and sort of being proactive versus being reactive. So-

Melinda Wittstock:         So there are a couple of threads that are really intriguing to me and the first is really how do you recognize that inspiration because you have this kind of aha moment of say in your case, “I’m going to split the podcasts under these different days and then this one is going to be just for me.” Often people have these kind of inspirations, they have these thoughts but they’re not present enough or in their body enough or however, whatever language we use around that to recognize the inspiration. Even if they do recognize the inspiration, there’s a whole bunch of other things that stand in the way that stop them from acting on it. Whereas you did. So what kind of advice can you give other women in this situation who, and men, who have these inspirations but just don’t know which one to act on? What’s real and what’s not?

JJ Flizanes:                          That is an awesome question and a perfect setup because that’s what we’re doing it the next big step. So I can’t really give all of the details. I mean, for time reasons. Do I want to share? Of course I do. I want everybody to know all the different ways in which you can figure that out for yourself because it’s going to be different for other people. So I’ll just speak to how it was for me and what I think and believe a lot of people do. For me, my law of attraction, spirituality, manifestation, that kind of work was stuff that fueled me deeply, but I was kind of secretly in the closet with. I didn’t really share it with other people freely that I didn’t know how they would receive it. I mean, I definitely shared it, but I would be careful who I shared it with because I recognize that it was taking a big leap for some people to think, “oh, you’re listening to Abraham Hicks and oh, she’s channeling what?”

I’m sorry she’s not … It’s a group of spirits, I don’t really get what you’re talking about. Right. So I had to be careful with who I shared that with and when I would inevitably people’s lives change. I mean, I even went to a therapist to do a certain kind of therapy called EMDR and that therapist is with my insurance, which is why I went and she was referred by somebody who had seen her before, but I quickly realized in the six sessions that we had, it was good clarity for me to know that I needed somebody who was a little bit more left brained or balanced brain and who was more linear. She was that very validating, “Oh, how are you feeling today? What’s happening? Oh,” and then whatever came out of my mouth went down that rabbit hole.

Well, in the beginning of our sessions when she wasn’t doing what I came in to ask and everyday I’d leave and I’d write her an email asking, “Can we please do this in the EMDR? Can we please, can we please, can we please.” Every time I went in and she wouldn’t do it because she follows some other path that came out of my mouth. But what I did in the beginning was, I don’t know what sparked me to do it, but I handed her a CD from Abraham about law of attraction stuff and it was like one of my favorite CDs. I don’t know why I did it because she’s the therapist. Right? But then later down the line, she thanked me. “Oh my God, my life has changed. This is so powerful.” I realized that my whole interaction with her was divinely guided for me to introduce her [inaudible 00:15:45]-

Melinda Wittstock:         So it was interesting that you are the therapist to the therapist.

JJ Flizanes:                          Right. We were not a match long term for really anything. I really believe and I even manifested I wanted my money back, actually. It’s a awesome story. I wasn’t going to ask for it. I never would have asked for my money back from somebody who does work like we do and your consulting or coaching, but I wasn’t happy that she never did what I asked her to do. I mean, she did it once or twice, but I had to beg and the point being that I got through that and I made peace with what had happened. I really was frustrated even though I was only paying a copay, but I was so frustrated that I didn’t get what I wanted and then I made peace with it and I went to the list of all the positive aspects that came out of it and an extracted as much as I could from it and I realized that I did get some things out of it. It wasn’t what I came in for, but yeah, some things happened.

The minute I made peace with it, I literally … She called me and said, “Your insurance company paid more than they were supposed to. So you either can have a credit or get your money back.” I’m like, “Oh great, I’ll take my money back.” So I manifested that. But so basically back to when do you know. I think you know when there’s something that really turns you on, that really motivates you, but you’re afraid to share it. It’s that risk of looking stupid. It’s the risk of looking weird. It’s that secret passion that you have. It’s something that you’re doing either internally or with a few people you, you talk about it or you’re attracted to watching or listening and somehow you know that you’re good at it.

That’s the other thing that came out of this for me is I’ve been doing work, been doing the law of attraction work since 2000 and maybe three. So that’s a long time. I really feel like I know the material and I know the concept and I apply it and I … So what happened was I put out the show. I never felt like an expert. Who can claim? I don’t channel. How am I going to claim that I’m an expert in law of attraction? So when I did the freedom Friday show and then it became spirit, purpose and energy, I still didn’t even make it like I’m an expert. In my episode zero when I’m talking about my experience and that I’ve used it and that I feel really confident in it and all of a sudden when I get to my event.

So now fast forward the event happened maybe a year and a couple months, maybe a year and two or three months after I initially launched the new version of the show, I get to the room and I said to them, “I’m not an expert,” and they all said, “Yes, you are. That’s why we’re here ant that’s why we listen.” I thought, “Wow.”  It’s when you feel secretly somewhere in your gut, it’s a gut check, it’s something that really lights you up, that you’re super excited about, but you think, “I don’t know, I’m not an expert in this. I don’t know how to make money at this.” I think that’s a calling to follow. Now, how it unfolds is going to be different for everybody, but if you don’t follow the calling, then you never allow it to unfold. You’ll never get validated. You’ll never watch it attract the right path for you, and that’s what has happened for me with spirit, purpose and energy, is it literally has laid out one step at a time the exact path that I’ve been meant to walk down and so doing the live event wasn’t even a question. It was a need because here I’m talking about community and feeling like a weirdo, because I’m talking about love attraction stuff, and that I don’t feel like I can just talk about that with anybody, and people in my family or friends, or some coworker, whatever, people that I work with, my clients. Not everyone is interested in that, yet it is such of interest to me. I decided that I needed this sort of event to attract a community, and that’s exactly what I got out of it.

Melinda Wittstock:         One of the things that you said that is so intriguing to me is being at peace with something. Like actually letting something go, and then the minute that happens, it’s almost like a whole bunch of doors open. All to often, when we’re in our human doing suits, where we get really willful and perhaps it’s ego, or we’re being driven by subconscious beliefs or whatever.

But we’re taught as entrepreneurs, we’re supposed to be resilient and tenacious, and all of this sort of stuff, which is good, until it’s not. Where we get tenacious about pursuing something that may not actually be good, or fixated on something that had gone wrong, or something, and not able to let it, just let it go. That takes a particular type of strength.

JJ Flizanes:                          Well, I think it’s the resiliency that is called, it calls us all to grow into as entrepreneurs. It’s not that I didn’t let something go, I never let Fit2Love go, I had an investor, and he wanted to let it go, and I’m like, “I’m not giving up. I don’t give up that easily.” He was right in that the brand, although he didn’t say it was the brand, it was about the book. When I took the book and made it into the podcast, without that path, without the book into the podcast of six days a week, into the rebrand of six different shows, I wouldn’t be here.

It’s the things that don’t work are still teaching you something. The things that are weighing you down are still a lesson for you. It’s at what point can you surrender to learn the lesson, and allow it to unfold in a different way.

Melinda Wittstock:         There’s a really great phrase, when the lesson is learned, the experience is no longer necessary.

JJ Flizanes:                          I haven’t heard it put that way, I’ve heard it said that lessons will be repeated until they’re learned.

Melinda Wittstock:         Yes, yeah, that’s the thing. But like they keep being repeated because you’re not getting it, right?

JJ Flizanes:                          Yeah.

Melinda Wittstock:         Like the experience is no longer necessary once it’s learned, and so maybe that’s the clue of like where you let it go. But I think it’s true that a lot of really good stuff comes from the challenge. It comes from the journey. If I’m honest with myself, and I think, okay, of all the successes I’ve had in my life. Did I learn anything from the success? I don’t think so. I mean, it was nice. It has been nice, it is nice whenever you succeed. You feel good.

But all of the lessons, all of the personal growth, everything really has come from challenge. Has come from, even the confidence has come from the challenge, from figuring it out, from overcoming it and moving beyond it, that allows you to be able to take different risks. Makes you feel more comfortable being out of your comfort zone. All those sorts of things.

JJ Flizanes:                          Yeah, absolutely, and I think in terms of taking that hint, or figuring out when you’re ready, like you mentioned about making peace with something and letting it go. I think what I had interpreted for a long, letting go means giving up. Letting go isn’t about giving up. It’s about allowing and receiving. Part of my Love Attraction work was understanding that this is not what I believe.

For some of you who are out there and you’re doing your business, and you think it’s your job to figure it out, or why haven’t I figured it out, or this is what I’m supposed to do, or this is what other people have done. It’s not necessarily a spiritual practice, although I’d invite you to take very lesson as a spiritual practice. For me, I could literally see that the way that I was behaving was in exact opposite of what I was believing.

If I believed that in universal leverage, that something that I was going to create, if it was like the right thing, that things would fall into place, and I wouldn’t have to work or push, or produce quite as hard as I was. That’s exactly what happened. I took a really honest look at myself too. Like, you were talking about that the successes have not really taught you as much as the challenges. The successes are the validation that what you’re doing is working.

Melinda Wittstock:         Yes.

JJ Flizanes:                          Right?

Melinda Wittstock:         That’s right.

JJ Flizanes:                          We do need them to say, “Hey, look how easy that was. Wow, that feel into place.” But then you don’t just stay there, it’s a moving, breathing, living, co-creating thing here that’s happening. When I took a hard look at how I was behaving with the Fit2Love book, and how I wanted that to go, and how I was really just overdoing and pushing, and pushing, and pushing, and afraid and operated from anxiety. I have to get this endpoint of a certain success level, or a certain automation, it’s easy level.

Like I realized, like wait a minute, what are you doing? You’re doing the exact opposite of what you tell people you believe.

Melinda Wittstock:         That’s such a typical part of growth. Don’t you find that growth is a bit patchy? Like I think we’re all kind of like puppies, where we grow out of order sometimes. So things that we learn, like we learn, we know them in our heads, but it takes a while for it to integrate into our body. Just like it takes a while for a puppy to grow into its skin.

JJ Flizanes:                          Yeah, absolutely, we have to … Lessons will be repeated until they’re learned, but you will also learn it when you’re ready, and no time prior … Like you have to be ready to receive the lesson, otherwise, and the information. We are growing and you are learning this entire time. I think it might be easier for everyone on the journey to maybe adopt a little bit more of an understanding of what energies are out there to support you, so that you can shorten the time on the lessons a little bit, and recognize and take a step back, and have a little bit better experience with them. Versus I think what a lot of us do is beat ourselves up, this is like a failure. We don’t …

Melinda Wittstock:         Yeah, that bully voice, that voice that oh man, we wouldn’t speak to our worst enemies often the way that bully voice can show up and say, “Oh God, I can’t believe you did that,” or all of that inner dialogue. Takes a while to recover from that and actually learn to I don’t know, just kind of forgive ourselves, and just go with the process. In your evolution JJ, as an entrepreneur and as a podcaster, and as a author, all these amazing things that you’re doing. Was there a time when you had that sort of incessant kind of talk in your head?

JJ Flizanes:                          Of course.

Melinda Wittstock:         Yes, because we all have that, right? But has it gone away? Over time, hopefully, we can quiet that voice a little bit more through meditation, through a lot of different techniques. How have you worked to quiet that voice, or to know what to listen to and what to discard?

JJ Flizanes:                          I think the comparison syndrome is something to recognize first and foremost. I think that knowing that there are people out there who are modeling things you want to do, there’s a certain amount of modeling that is needed so you can see someone else has done it, and maybe you follow in someone’s footsteps, in some way, shape or form. Because you know the path has been set. But then past that sort of initial, they did it then I can do. I really think that there’s an inward journey that people need to take on those voices are there for a couple of different reasons.

One, they are unhealed wounds letting you know that you don’t believe in yourself. And they’re calling you to trust in a new way. They’re calling you to grow and heal in a new way. I think if we just look at silencing them in some way, that’s like a coping mechanism, which sometimes we absolutely need to do. But we really want to look at healing them. We’re going to look at accepting ourselves for who we are in our entirety, and being able to take this journey as a more spiritual journey, so that we understand that there’s nothing wrong.

We’re never going to get it done. We’re never going to get it right. That we’re constantly evolving and expanding, and that at any point in time, anything that’s coming to you that is something that you don’t want, is just clarity and information to help you refocus on what it is that you do want. While I did have a huge comparison issue for a long time, especially in the podcast world. What my event did for me, because there was definitely some fears before the first event.

What the event did for me was to show me the strength of my community, and the strength of my message. Like I said, I do get sort of fan mail a couple of times a week, and I get really deep conversations about suicides and depression and energy, and feeling like that someone wasn’t connected, and being torn about what to do in life. And they didn’t know that other people were talking about this kind of stuff, and how it changed their lives.

I get the. this podcast changed my life on a regular basis. But I couldn’t have gotten here without trusting the process that was coming up within me. The impulses that I couldn’t deny, and if you’re too busy listening to all those voices in your head, you’re not going to hear the way you’re hearing the positive voices. Where you’re hearing the impulse, where you’re trying to trust yourself, where you’re pulling back out of your body, out of your small mind, if you will.

Out of the fear based of, into a trusting, allowing, receiving mode. Again, to me, that’s all spirituality stuff. That’s all a connection to something bigger than you are. It takes you into a purpose bigger than you are, which I think is really important for women to get in touch with. Because a lot of men have that, and a lot of women put it in their children. The problem is that when your children are grown up and they leave the house, now you’re almost purposeless.

You’re not, but women feel, all of a sudden this void of now what do I focus on, now what do I do? They don’t see that their talents and their gifts are way bigger than them parenting a child. It can be just parenting a child, but then there’s a trust of well, what else am I supposed to be doing while I’m here? What lives do I affect in other ways? I think that the quieting of the mind, if you will, or the healing of the wounds that even cause that mind to be talking in the first place, is that process.

And a balance of at one point looking at, what does that say about what I believe about me, and I need to work on that relationship with me first. I need to grow me, ’cause I can’t grow my business to where I want it to be without growing me. The balance between that and meditating and being quiet, and having to trust in something bigger than yourself. Whether it be a … It could be just the universe, or it could be stars or astrology, it could be in, I don’t know.

It doesn’t have to be a in a god, per se, or in a creator, but it could be in some kind of order or whatever. I don’t care what you make it. But I think it is important to take it out of the myopic view of that you’re here on this planet for a short period of time, and that if you don’t get it done, something’s wrong. I think that there’s a trust in the collective energetic blueprint that we all have and keep expanding on every generation and every year. That we can tap into, which can give you a little bit of peace. To shut up, quiet your mind and listen.

Listen for the inner calling that you’re having, of your own higher consciousness, your own subconscious mind. Because all of that noise is denying you the opportunity to hear possibly that one thing that’s going to make that big shift for you.

Melinda Wittstock:         This is so true. It’s interesting that spirituality keeps coming up more and more and more in the context of entrepreneurial conversations. It’s just become so clear to me that personal growth and business growth are one and the same. That really to succeed as an entrepreneur, you have to figure out your mindset, or at least retire over time those limiting beliefs. Get all that stuff out of the way. Get into alignment with who you are. Like really on a spiritual level, or on a soul level.

Whereas even a year ago, it was ‘woo woo’. It seems like it’s accelerating.

JJ Flizanes:                          I’m glad, I’m glad and I hope I’m a part of that, because I felt like taking this step out to do these events, and to combine my body and soul. In fact, that the next big step we’re doing money. I didn’t add money into releasing what weighs you down, because I keep going, oh, it’s not business, oh, it’s not business. But money is energy for everybody, and it doesn’t matter if they’re entrepreneurial or not, we need to address money.

It’s not me who’s leading the charge on that, except on the manifestation law of attraction side of it. But on the other mindset beliefs and habits and patterns and strategy, I’ve got Melanie Benson, who’s going to be leading that at the next big step. I finally said, “Okay.” It’s not an area where I have not allowed myself to take on, because I’ll say I’m not an expert in it.

But it doesn’t matter if I’m an expert, and it’s about the integration. We can’t deny that huge piece that money and energy in business in that way, in that tangible way are part of this process. I think it’s an awesome, I’m excited that people are getting more and more into having these conversations. The people that are listening to my shows, they’re a lot of Millenials. There’s a lot of younger people who are listening to this very Purpose and Energy, and I think that’s awesome.

Because we’re having deeper conversations, and I think what’s going on in the world today, it’s we can’t keep operating the same way we have been. We’ve recognized there’s a need for a change. Of course, we’re having deeper conversations because we recognize the [inaudible 00:33:59] we were having before got us where we are, and a lot of people aren’t happy about where we are.

Melinda Wittstock:         Change is very challenging for a lot of people. The change is happening faster and faster and faster around us. On one hand change is great, like for an entrepreneur, because there are so many opportunities to seize on.

But it’s also anxiety producing for many people. How do you help people with that aspect of change? Whether they want to change themselves, or the world is changing around them, or they’re trying to figure out how to leverage change.

JJ Flizanes:                          Well, you get some more ‘woo woo’ in here. I honestly, I use astrology for people, because that to me is a little bit more personalized to how someone may or may not react to what’s best for them. If you have somebody who is an air sign or a water sign, or even a fire sign, those signs all have movement to them. They’re not grounded. There are a lot of movement. Those folks, and again, remember that there’s also your whole blueprint of your astrology, is that how you deal with emotion is your moon sign, so I wouldn’t know that unless I did your chart.

There’s many other planets that show me different ways of dealing with life and interpreting things. But just generally, if you’re someone who has a lot of water, fire, air, change maybe not so bad for you. You may take it more dramatically than others. But then we look into the earth signs, and just in general earth, if you think of the element of earth, the earth doesn’t move. In fact, the only time the earth moves is when there’s an earthquake.

For those of you that are earth signs, who have noticed maybe there’s a pattern in your life, that you only actually change when you’re forced to change, that is you manifesting a situation that is going to propel you forward, because you are not used to taking that first step. How I honestly deal with people individually and in a group, and how we’ll deal with it at the event and on my show, really is looking at your energetic blueprint, which to me, is your astrological birth chart, and saying what works best for you, and understanding that if you can look at your own chart, and know what you are, oh, well that makes sense.

It makes sense that my Venus is an Aries, a [inaudible 00:36:22] with love, your Venus. An Aries is the first of the signs, and the Aries is the most impatient. For a long time, with an ex-boyfriend, I just couldn’t relax, because I needed to know if we were together or not together. Are we together, are we a couple, are we not? Is it an open relationship or are we committed? And he wouldn’t answer me, and I went crazy.

I thought, this is so weird. I’m very gray in a lot of areas of life, so why am I so impatient, and I need answer? I looked at my chart and I went, oh, that’s why. Because I have no patience in that area, because my Venus is an Aries, and that’s why. The minute I validated and understood that, then I could work with it. When it comes to change and growth, I really think that really, astrology, is going to be a great place to start. Not even like how you wore gray, is about your astrology more than your parents and what you learned, because that’s your energetic flow.

If you’re not working with it, then you … Okay, one more quick story about that, one of my dear friends who’s a colleague of mine, and who’s also presenting at the event. She’s a Gemini. She is also ADD, and she is constantly like in the air, shiny object syndrome. She can focus. But what I realized over time is that she believed that in business, she needed to learn all the things that business owners do. She needed to learn how to make a funnel. She needed to learn how to do the website. She needed to learn all the different aspects, and all the different concepts.

I sat with her once, and I said to her, “This is not your strength. Why do you keep forcing yourself to try to figure this out? This is not how you’re built.” The minute I said that, she goes, “Oh my God, thank you so much. Like I have been, because I just keep trying, I keep trying, it doesn’t work.” I’m like, “Right, this is where you need to delegate. You stay here in the ideas of conceptualization, and you delegate for someone to actually birth it into reality. That’s your strength in the idea part.”

So for me, that’s where we have to bring in astrology and woo-woo crap into business, because it’s going to support the decisions you make, the support you get, what you’re good at, what you’re not. I can’t code. I could never be a programmer for computers, because that’s an air sign thing. I’m looking at code and it literally zaps my brain, and I’m brain dead for the rest of the day. If I watch over someone’s shoulder, if I watch somebody code, forget it. It’s just, I can’t do it. That’s just never going to be my thing.

I’m sure there’s parts that you also feel like, “I’m really good at this. It works with me. It’s easy, it flows,” and then in other ways, it feels like you’re trying to pull a boulder up a hill.

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh, gosh. Yeah, I’ve felt that on different businesses that I’ve done. I did have a propensity always to pick really hard things, like trying to create algorithms that measure authenticity or creating a crowdsourcing news app on an iPhone in like 2010, right, when investors would say things to me like, “Oh, so Melinda, what makes you think mobile’s going to be big?” I’d be like, “Well like I mean, it is, right?” “Okay, well, that’s great, so even if mobile’s big what makes you think that people will create content?” “Well, they are, they’re beginning to. They’re all over YouTube and Facebook.” Right? “Yeah, I know, but those sites aren’t making money yet, right? What makes you think that they’ll make money?” Then it’s like, “Okay, so even if you have all this crowd-source data, what makes you think that … How are you going to store it all?” And I’d be like, “There’s this new thing called the cloud,” right?

So I was innovating on so many different levels all at once really early, when you’re really ahead of the game and if you’re kind of a visionary, you can get out ahead of your skis, right? Which is a really uncomfortable place to be, but one where I always seem to want to pick hard things. There’s probably some deep psychological reason for this.

Somewhere in my mind I thought that to succeed, it had to be hard, and with Wings, it’s kind of nice because I’m just doing something that’s very much in my heart and it doesn’t really require me to go build new technology or whatever. Right?

JJ Flizanes:                          And what’s your sign, Melinda?

Melinda Wittstock:         Well, I’m a cusp. I’m between Cancer and Leo.

JJ Flizanes:                          Oh.

Melinda Wittstock:         My birthday is July 23rd, so I just had one.

JJ Flizanes:                          Happy belated birthday.

Melinda Wittstock:         Well, thank you very much. Yeah, but it’s kind of confusing, because part of me is this kind of watery crab that really is a homebody, and then the other part of me is all lion, like hear me roar, I’m going to go out and conquer. Right? It’s confused.

JJ Flizanes:                          Well, maybe, if you’re interested, on another show we can do your chart.

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh, that would be awesome. I would love that.

JJ Flizanes:                          Because that Cancer/Leo cusp is really just one part of you. There’s your soul sign, and I could tell you what your lessons in this lifetime are that you’re supposed to be learning as well as how you deal with emotion, how you deal with love, how you deal with communication, how you deal with taking action, and the sign that you’ll be growing into soon because the second half of our life is more about our ascendant than our sun sign. So if you know your ascendant, you’ll know those traits that are now really going to be more active in your life, proactive in your life, than your sun.


Melinda Wittstock:         Oh, man. I am so fascinated by all of this, numerology, and I was blessed to spend some time in Guatemala, in the pyramids, and learn the ancient Mayan numerology and how we’re born with the energy of the day. What was really interesting about mine is it is a connector, and I look at all the businesses I’ve done, they’ve all been about connection, and that was my really powerful energy on the day I was born.  They have all these different signs of different energies. There’s one primary one, but there’s a whole bunch of others, and if they’re even energies, that means they’re working really well. If they’re uneven, that’s where you have to grow. Every single thing that this Mayan shaman told me was absolutely correct, it was like I had … hairs on the back of my neck.

JJ Flizanes:                          I love when that happens. That the confirmation that it’s right.

Melinda Wittstock:         It’s fascinating. What’s really interesting is when you take all these different ancient wisdoms and numerology and all of this and they’re all sort of different, they all spring up independently of one another, and yet they arrive at the same conclusions.

JJ Flizanes:                          Yes. The different energies, absolutely, to show you … They’re like different maps and that’s why I love doing them, because you look at it from different angles and sometimes you’re coming up with the same end result, but it’s nice to know what the pieces and parts mean because then you can actually not manipulate them, but work with them in your favor instead of fight against them.

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh, yeah. Absolutely. Okay, so it’s a date. We definitely have to do that. I’m so curious now.

JJ Flizanes:                          Yeah, I’ll do your chart on air, we will talk about your chart on air and you can share and we can go through a little analysis and how people can use astrology in their business as well as in their life to make sense of things and not beat themselves up. I’m a big believer, when we do astrology at my events, it’s to make people more compassionate and empathetic to other people, because too many times, we just judge others and think, “How could they do that? Why did they do that? That’s so stupid. How come they didn’t react that way? Oh, my god, don’t they care about that?” And you’re making assumptions based on how you see things, but there are many other ways of looking at something that it doesn’t resonate with you, because you’re on a different frequency, but you’re also just the way that you’re built. So-

Melinda Wittstock:         Yeah, and when we get triggered it’s always about us. It’s never about the other person. It’s always something that’s going on within us. I’ve learned that those are really interesting opportunities. Whenever I get into judgment or just triggered or pissed off at something, it’s like, “Oh, that’s interesting. What’s that showing me about me?” And there’s always something, and learning to do that with discipline has been really revelatory for me and actually very empowering.

So you have an event coming up which is really exciting, so I want you to talk about your event.

JJ Flizanes:                          Yeah, so we did the Releasing What Weighs You Down in January, which was awesome, and we’re doing it again next January. What was birthed out of that, again, here’s another situation in business where I didn’t know how it was going to go. I knew what I intended, I was excited about it, but when I was creating the forms of what I was going to offer at the event, I thought, “I don’t know if anyone’s interested in doing another event. I don’t know what I would do at another event. But I know that I’m going to let them tell me.” So I ended up discounting the next event for the people who attended the first one and gave them basically two different dates. I literally got the idea of what to call it as I was sitting there kind of meditating on it. I’m like, “Oop, the next big step. The Next Big Step.” So there we go, and like half the room bought it.

So half the people are coming back already, and luckily, I have some spaces still yet to fill and people can buy a virtual ticket. But again, did I have it planned out? No. I just had some dates in mind, I had an idea of what I would add to it. I thought I was going to maybe add money, but I didn’t even have to pitch it. I just said, “We’re doing another one. If you’re interested, you can buy it today for a discount while you’re still here at the first one,” and many people bought it. So there was the confirmation that I’m onto something and then I filled in the blanks later, which is not a problem.

So The Next Big Step is not a prerequisite to have done the first event. The difference in energies would be that Releasing What Weighs You Down will stay as a January event for those people who recognize that they’ve been carrying energy with them, emotional, whatever, that want to start off a new, fresh start every year to again, keep releasing some of those negative mindsets and patterns and habits and beliefs and energies that we carry through the holiday and that we think year to year to year, “When’s this going to change?” So Releasing What Weighs You Down is more of a detoxing, a cleansing, a purification, if you will, to move into that new year.

The Next Big Step, so that energy is a little different. That energy is what we were talking about today on the show. It’s like, when do you know what the thing is to follow? How do you know when there’s something that you need to follow? A lot of us secretly repress our desires and our ideas and we deny ourselves because we don’t know the how and that’s what stops us. We go, “I want to do this, but I don’t know how,” and so then we put it on the back burner, but it’s like a yearning that we have. What The Next Big Step is designed to do is to help you break through that need to know the how and to step into allowing yourself to be led down the path, as I was through Spirit, Purpose, & Energy, as I was through Releasing What Weighs You Down, and as I am on another whole business adventure that I don’t even think I’ve told you about.

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh.

JJ Flizanes:                          It’s going to be huge.

Melinda Wittstock:         Yay!

JJ Flizanes:                          And the reason I know it’s going to be huge is because at my January event, I made a comment about, it’s a food product, I made a comment to the room and on camera that the customer service for this company sucked and that I was tired of trying to … I love their product, I keep selling it every time I post about it, 12 people buy it on Amazon, I am selling it like hotcakes, and all I wanted was them to kind of co-create with me, come to the event, be a sponsor or give some samples away so I could help promote the product. But I wasn’t getting any response, so I made this comment on camera and at the event, “Well, if they don’t do it, I’m just going to make it myself,” and I didn’t mean it when I said it. Then about two weeks later, I’m taking my exercise walk to go visit the cats, I call it my cat walk. I’m taking my cat walk up the street to visit the cats and I literally was stopped dead in my tracks with the idea, just it hit me like a ton of bricks and I thought, “Oh, my god, I wasn’t kidding. I’m really going to do this.”

Now, do I know anything about making a food product? I do not. But what I know is that I have the ability to learn and I have resources and people where I can figure it out and find out. The reason why I know it’s going to be successful is because I’ve already spoken in a couple different rooms and mentioned it and I’ve had 50 women approach me and say, “Where can I buy this? When’s it going to be ready? When can I get it?” I’m like, this is going to be so freaking easy, and the thing is, I don’t even care. I’m doing it for me. Again, we go back to with Spirit, Purpose, & Energy, I’m doing it for me.

So The Next Big Step is about uncovering those desires that you have that light you up, that are calling to you to take action on, and you don’t need to know [inaudible 00:50:04] do need to do is create some space to allow them to show you how, and the best way to always do that is to take yourself on some kind of personal retreat. You are not necessarily going to figure it out when you are busy thinking, doing, and going in your normal daily life. You have to remove yourself for some perspective and space to be led down the path of ideas and inspiration and connections to develop and let it birth itself, in a way, so that you can start down this path.

So The Next Big Step is literally about the breakthrough, about whatever it is in your life. We’re going to really go deep on relationships, because I’ve had a relationship change. And not because of that. We were going to do the work that I … The work we’re going to do at this one, I wanted to do at Releasing What Weighs You Down, we ran out of time. So I’ve added an extra day to this event, and we’re going to do it again in January where it’s going to be an added on day, because there just wasn’t enough time.

So we’re going to do some deep dives with relationship work, so if you’re in a relationship that you are finding that you’re frustrated, unhappy, you’ve distanced yourselves, if you’re in a marriage or in a situation, it doesn’t have to be a marriage, that you both do want to do the work, this is the perfect place to bring a spouse because I promise, I can guarantee a huge revelation, because I’ve had it and everyone who I do this work with has it. Now, what you do with it and what happens after that is, I can’t guarantee that, but I can guarantee uncovering something that you’ve never looked at before and how it has attracted you to both your partners as well as your friends, your business partners. It’s really like your deepest wound. It’s like really uncovering your deepest wound and why all the relationships in your life have reflected what you need to heal.

So there’s the relationship piece, there’s the money piece, we’re going to have Lisa Thomas back clearing inherited emotional DNA, so that’s a huge other ethereal piece which you can’t really do on your own, and then of course there’ll be exercise and I’m thinking if I’m missing anything. Oh, and then of course, there’s the food and exercise piece, there’s the weight loss piece, there’s the hormone and aging piece to “Why am I 55, 60, whatever, 47, even 40, 35 and I can’t seem to lose the weight no matter what I do and I’ve tried every diet and every exercise program, and what’s going on with my hormones and what’s adrenal fatigue?”

So we’re going to really take this dive and it’s only four days. It starts on a Thursday at 4:00 and ends on a Sunday at 2:00. It is September 20th through the 23rd in Los Angeles. There is a virtual ticket if you cannot make it to the event but you want to have the trainings and the teachings and the healings that we’re going to do. There’ll be meditation. There’ll be exercise. All the food is included. The food is going to be all gluten free and dairy free along with some vegan options, so we’re supporting, again, the highest learning with the lowest amount of inflammation possible during the event. All food and drink is covered. People can share rooms and the airport thing’s really easy. There’s a shuttle to the hotel from the airport in Los Angeles.

So if you’re really ready for that breakthrough, come to The Next Big Step. I promise you’ll get it in at least one area, if not all areas.

Melinda Wittstock:         Oh, it sounds amazing, JJ. What a joy having you on the podcast. It’s always wonderful to talk with you and also as part of the Wings of Success Summit, where you provided so much value there, as well.

So real quick, other than your event, how can people find you and work with you?

JJ Flizanes:                          jjflizanes.com. JJ F-LI-Z-A-N-E-S dot com. Actually, let me give away, for anyone who’s interested in some of the things I’ve been talking about, I’d be happy to give away my book, my latest book, which is The Invisible Fitness Formula: 5 Secrets to Release Weight & End Body Shame. If you’d like a free copy, you can go to jjflizanes.com/gift.

Melinda Wittstock:         Wonderful. Thank you so much, that’s so generous, and I encourage everybody to go get that. I’m going to go do that myself, and JJ, thank you again for putting on your wings and flying with us.

JJ Flizanes:                          Thank you for having me, Melinda.


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Listen to learn the secrets, strategies, practical tips and epiphanies of women entrepreneurs who’ve “been there, built that” so you too can manifest the confidence, capital and connections to soar to success!
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