The EntreMD Podcast

Ep #201: 7 Scary Things I Had to Do on My Way to a Million Dollars

The EntreMD Podcast with Dr. Una | 7 Scary Things I Had to Do on My Way to a Million DollarsMy new book has just been released. At the time of recording, the book has been out for less than 24 hours, and the results have already been incredible. We hit Amazon Bestseller status in five different categories, including Small Business, which is a big deal. In fact, it’s beyond amazing. But while I have a lot of you listeners to thank, this book is the result of tons of scary decisions.

Entrepreneurship is hard and it’s filled with uncertainty. There is no recipe for success, so the tendency to want to quit or go dabble in something else is really high. So, I’m taking you behind the scenes and tracking my journey up until the book’s release, in the hopes that it helps you on your own journey.

Tune in this week to discover seven scary things that I’ve had to do on my way to a million-dollar business and releasing a successful book. You’ll leave this episode knowing what to do when challenges come your way, and how to embrace your entrepreneurial side and stay the course when things get difficult.

If you need help either discovering your zone of genius or figuring out how to present it to the world, you need to join the EntreMD Business School. Doors are now open for the June 2022 cohort, so submit your application!

If you loved this episode of The EntreMD Podcast, I invite you to join my signature subscription program EntreMD On Demand, giving you access to a library of business courses designed to help you thrive as a physician entrepreneur! 

What You’ll Learn from this Episode:

  • 7 scary things I’ve had to do on the way to creating a million-dollar business.
  • Why entrepreneurship never stops being scary.
  • The adjustments I needed to make to have an impact as a physician and an entrepreneur at the same time.
  • Where you should be focusing if you want to see returns in your business.
  • How to dare your fears and say yes, so you can deal with scary things on your journey.

Listen to the Full Episode:

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Full Episode Transcript:

Hi docs, welcome to The EntreMD Podcast, where it’s all about helping amazing physicians just like you embrace entrepreneurship so you can have the freedom to live life and practice medicine on your terms. I’m your host, Dr. Una.

Well, hello, hello, my friends. Welcome back to another episode of The EntreMD Podcast. This is going to be like an episode we have never had because I am going to be telling you all about what happened on day one of the launch of The EntreMD Method book. So this is going to be super, super exciting.

And I want to say right off the bat, a big thank you. I am so grateful for the EntreMD community because of the amount of support, the belief in the mission. I don’t know, it’s like EntreMD is like my family, really. And many of you I have never actually even met in real life. But we’ve built this thing and we are part of a movement and we’re effecting change, and we’re so effective at it as a community. I am just beyond grateful. Okay? Just beyond grateful.

All right, before we get into the episode I want to read this review by Trevor Oldham. And it says, “Awesome!” With an exclamation mark and five beautiful stars. And it says, “One of my new fav shows.” Okay, so Trevor, thank you so much for this review, I absolutely appreciate it. And I thank you because when you leave us reviews it helps us get the word out there.

And it’s amazing the amount of change that people can experience when they listen to the podcast. So anything we can do to get the word out there is just beyond amazing. So thank you so much for that, I appreciate it. And as I always say, if you haven’t left us a review or you’ve never shared the podcast, come on.

We bring you great value twice a week. We’ve done it now for over two years. And I would really appreciate it. I know, I know, sometimes you’re taking a walk and it’s your time to think and all that. Or you’re driving, right? And so maybe you forget, I’m not saying you have bad intentions, because of course you have great intentions. But I want you to also take the time to share this, it would mean so much to another physician. Okay?

All right. So today, at the time of this recording the EntreMD Method book has been out for less than 24 hours. And let me tell you what happened because of you and because of those in the EntreMD Facebook group, and really the people in the entire community. We hit Amazon Best Seller, like number one best seller in five categories, okay? In five categories, including small business.

Now, let me tell you the way these rankings work. People will typically pick niche things like practice management, you know, that is niche, it’s like medicine, so there’s probably not so many books there, it’s easier to get to bestseller status. Or medical ethics, or a physician, or physician caregiver, and things like that. And the reason for that is, again, there are fewer books there. It’s a smaller subsect, it’s easier to hit bestseller status there.

But because of your support we had bestseller status in small business. I mean, small business, you’re talking about all kinds of books in all kinds of industries. And we’re there, we made it there. It was beyond exciting for me to see that. I was so blown away. I was like, “What in the world?”

So number one is The EntreMD Method, number two is The Common Path to Uncommon success by John Lee Dumas, it’s a book that came out last year. You have Profit First there, you have E Myth. Of course, these are older books that have been there like forever, but they still do so well. You have Who Not How at number 14, you have Traction at number 16.

These all really great books. Really, really great books. And we made it to number one in that category. That is beyond amazing. Okay? And so I’ve really been blown away. And at the time of this recording, there are 14 reviews that are already live on Amazon. Again, mind blowing, really mind blowing. And so many people shared it, you can check out the hashtag, hashtag EntreMD book.

And it’s been a very humbling experience. And so I wanted to take some time, I’m going to read one of the reviews from the book. But I want to paint a picture, and I think the reason why this is really important is because entrepreneurship is hard. And entrepreneurship is filled with uncertainty.

And entrepreneurship doesn’t really have a really tight algorithm. And so the tendency to want to quit, or dabble, or quit but nobody knows, you know that version? Where you’re on cruise control, you’re just doing enough so you don’t have to tell people you’ve quit. The tendency is so high.

And so I figured I would take you behind the scenes and then track this journey up onto the book. And it would help you, right? And why do I want to do this? Because we make great entrepreneurs. And I know it can be scary at times. And it can be scary when you’re starting. It can be scary when you’re scaling. It can be scary when you’re trying to bring a team on.

The scary doesn’t go away, we just learned to navigate it. And so I figured what would be better than pulling up seven scary things that I’ve had to do on my way to a million dollar business, right? Why don’t we put it that way? Okay, why don’t we put it that way?

And I’m really coming to share from my heart. It’s not thoroughly scripted or anything like that, but you’re going to walk away going like, “I can handle challenges and when problems come my way, I know what to do. And I’m not going to fall into the trap of quitting.”

Now, are there sometimes where maybe, maybe not really quitting, but pivoting is what you should do? Yes. And I think that’s why it’s important to have coaches, to be in an entrepreneurial space and so you’ll know. But for most people it’s not, “I’m tired, I quit,” right? Like that’s a strategic decision that you make.

But for the most part, the quitting because it’s hard, it’s difficult, it’s uncertain, it doesn’t seem like it’s working, I hope this episode takes care of that for you. Okay? All right. So let’s take it to the beginning, so 2016 was kind of where my journey for EntreMD started. And that was when I realized that medicine as we know it, is gone. And as physicians, we have to retool ourselves, okay?

So we know how to take care of patients. And we kind of had stayed in our lane, you know, we don’t really veer into the business space, or what’s going on with administration or all of that we just see people and get paid. That’s it, you know? And I realized that that time was gone. And I had to retool myself such that if I could no longer see patients, I would still be able to have a huge impact as a physician, and I would be able to maintain my lifestyle.

So the first thing I had to do was to kind of accept that. Now, I didn’t know what coaching was, I knew what consulting was. And I was like, “Okay, I’m going to become a consultant.” But I need you to understand this, think about the imposter syndrome that goes with that, right? Because I am a physician, I see people. Yes, I may have run a private practice, but still I don’t have a master’s in business administration or any of those kinds of things. I’m “just a physician.”

And I had to embrace that thinking of okay, now I’m a consultant. Right? And it took me a minute. And I’ve had times when people are like, for the first time, sometimes they post this in the EntreMD Facebook group, and they’re like, “For the first time, I said out loud I’m an entrepreneur.”

And in the same way, maybe your thing may be you secretly wanted to grow your business and all of that stuff, but you can’t bring yourself to say, “I run a million dollar business” or whatever that is. And so, that was scary. But you see, if I didn’t embrace that, I would not have gone forward, there would be no book. Okay? There would be no book today if I didn’t do that.

And so the first thing, I had to accept that okay, I’m a consultant, I’m a coach, or whichever. And that was scary. Okay? So then I did that. And then when I said that, I was like, “Okay, I need to get some kind of training, I don’t know how to do any of this.” I mean, I figured out a private practice, but you can get away with not knowing, well at least in that time you can get away with not knowing too much business, right?

And so I started learning and I was like, “Speaking would be great to grow a business.” And you guys have heard me tell the story many times, you know, when I signed up for the $43,000 program, 10 month program, right? And that was my first experience, if you will, with coaching or those kinds of programs. And it was phenomenal, but I signed up for that. Okay?

That year, I probably generated $4,200 or somewhere around there. And it was up to me to say this is working or this is not working, right? Because sometimes what happens is when we make investments in ourselves, we’re too focused on the investment and not focused enough on the result that the investment will create.

So I could have focused on, oh, I paid this much, when am I getting my return? I paid this much, when am I getting my return? Or I can focus on the fact that well, if I learn this speaking thing, this is what it can create in my business. So let me go create that. Right?

And so the first year did I “make my money back?” I didn’t, I could have, I was just too removed from the entrepreneurial space, I was too introverted, I didn’t have the bandwidth to go on stage. And so I did the best I could with the way my life was at the time. And I recognized that, right? It had nothing to do with the program. It had everything to do with me.

I had a lot of stuff to get rid of before I could hit the ground running. But when I did hit the ground running, boy did I hit the ground running. So till today, my husband still says, “Wow, that’s the best $43,000 we’ve spent.”

And so did it happen right away? No. So my question is, when things don’t happen right away, are you able to stay the course? Are you able to manage your mind and focus on the result you want to get and put your head down and get the result? So maybe I didn’t make my money back that year, but I’ve made that money back over and over and over and over again.

All right, so again, I’m just trying to paint, you know, sometimes on the outside it looks like everything is perfect and I just want to paint these pictures for you. Okay? So I could have said it wasn’t working, I could have quit. But guess what? If I quit, there would have been no podcast today, there would have been no business school, there would have been no book.

See, the opportunity cost of quitting is so high, so high. And that’s why it hurts me when I see people quit. Literally, it does. Because I’m like, “Oh my goodness, I could go five years ahead, 10 years ahead and go like this is what you could have had, but you quit.” Right?

Okay, so then the third thing was, I had my first EntreMD meeting. Meeting, like I’m trying to do was still a figment of my imagination. I was like, “Okay, I’m going through this transformation, doctors need to go through this transformation because medicine as we know it is gone, it’s going to be really ugly.”

Okay, this is 2016, right? And listen, I was coming out from being an introverted introvert. I didn’t have access to a lot of doctors, I live in Georgia. So this happened in Georgia, but I trained in New Jersey, so I didn’t have like friends from residency or anybody to call. And I died a thousand times reaching out to doctors to tell them to come for this meeting where I was going to tell them about what they need to know about the state of medicine and how they need to adapt.

Okay, I need you to think about how crazy that was. Now, it may even seem a tad crazy now. But I need you to think six years ago, it was totally crazy. Because even when I would post about these things on social media, people are like that is never happening. Like what are you talking about? Like the doctors, we will always have job security. Right?

So I reached out to all these people, I think I had six or seven docs eventually come. And I had five or six medical students in a restaurant, and that was our first meeting. And I was terrified putting it together. I was terrified executing it. The people in the meeting were people, some of them had, you know, thriving private practices and all that kind of stuff. And it was scary.

It was so scary to do that. But I did it and I did it afraid, and I did it wondering even while I was talking, I was wondering like, “Am I doing this right? Does this even matter? Are they looking at me like I’m crazy?” But again, that was the birth of EntreMD. That was September 2018. That was the first meeting.

And if I didn’t embrace the fear and do that messy, there would have been no EntreMD Live, there would have been no business school, there would have been no book, there would have been no podcast. And so sometimes when you do what seems little, I mean, maybe people are doing bigger things than I was at the time. But the bottom line is if I didn’t do that, I wouldn’t do anything I’m doing now.

And so yeah, you may be in a place where you’re like, what I’m doing is not up to par. Other people are doing things bigger than me, blah, blah, blah. I’m telling you, you’re running your own race. Run it and get your stuff done. And if you’re afraid, that’s okay, just don’t let it stop you. Okay?

And then after that I was like, okay, so EntreMD is born. And I was like, So what are you going to do? I was like, I’ll do coaching. Now remember, my identity wasn’t there. I wasn’t thinking of myself as a coach at all and I had to tell people to give me money to coach them. Oh, this was the strangest thing. I never did those calls on Zoom because I didn’t want people to see how scared I was.

I did it on the phone. So I’m like making faces and going like, oh my goodness, and all the things behind the scenes, but I had to offer them coaching. I had to tell them, I would love to work with you. These are the changes that we can have, we can create together. And this is what it will look like, and it’s $1,000 a month.

Oh my goodness. Oh my goodness. I was like, “I’m a physician. I don’t need to do this.” All the drama, all of it. But let me tell you what, I took the drama with me and I did it. Was it scary? Yes. But I did it. I did it. And I think about the results that those doctors have till today and I’m like, “Wow, that is crazy. Crazy.”

Were people charging a lot more than I was? Yeah. And so? What is my job? To do what’s in front of me. To do the next scary thing. And that’s exactly what I did. And so I did that and then eventually I had my first life event.

And I’ve told the story many times and, man, was that scary. And then I have people signing up. So people came from eight states, right? New York, from Texas, from Pennsylvania, from Ohio. They came from all over the country. I’m like, “These people are flying in? Like for what?” I’m taking you behind the scenes, right?

Now, I knew I had stuff to give, but there’s a lot of confidence that comes from experience, that comes from all these things that I didn’t have at the time. And so it was scary pulling it off. But I’ve learned to do scared and so I did it. And boy did that put EntreMD on the map.

I think that’s the first time we showed up on the map because in Facebook groups they were talking about EntreMD, people talked about their experience, I posted about like crazy. It’s almost like that’s when we became legit, for want of a better way to explain it.

And then that was the first time I did my selling from the stage. I started a group program, I sold it on there and about 30 doctors signed up. And oh my goodness, I cannot tell you the radical transformation they experienced in 12 weeks, right? And wow, that was so amazing.

And I’m catching on, right? I’m like, “Wow, it seems like when we do scary things, that’s great.” And at that event, I even remember when I was speaking, there were people that were there, I think they just came to check me out, see what she’s about. So they weren’t paying attention, they were laughing the whole time.

I’m on stage, right? And I’m going like, “Okay, well, I’m going to deliver. Maybe they’re not my people. I’ll talk to my people.” The whole thing was bizarre. And then after that, a year after that was when we launched the EntreMD Business School.

Now with the business school, oh my goodness, that was scary. And I’m like, wait a minute, so Harvard has a business school, Emory has a business school. Emory is the University in Atlanta where I live. And I was like and I have a business school? What’s going on here? And I’m like, This is so crazy.

And I felt like an imposter talking about it. But I’ve learned, right? I don’t let that feeling stop me. I realize that the scarier it is, the more I’m on the edge of something really great. And so I’ve learned to dare my fears. You guys have heard me say that, you know, I’m like, “Oh well, since the fear won’t go away, come chill out. You stay in the back seat or you stay in the passenger seat, you don’t get to drive. I drive, right.”

And so I started that and that is one of the best decisions I ever made. I have the opportunity to work with doctors year long, some of them have been in the business school since it started. And to watch the transformation, and to watch the change, to watch the big businesses that are built, the wins that are created.

And even though it starts off with business, it filters through every aspect of their lives. It is my life’s honor to work in the EntreMD Business School. But it was scary. It was scary, I had all the thoughts like, will they like it? Will they get anything out of it? You know, all the things. I’m so grateful I did it.

And even if we talk about the book, I mean, everybody has their thing. So for me, podcasting was a little intimidating. But you know, you don’t see me, I don’t see you. I get to teach, I love to teach. I’m an introvert, so one of my superpowers is studying people, and studying trends, and thinking through things. And so it’s kind of easy for me to come up with things to teach. I think of analogies and stories, and I love to develop this stuff.

And so podcasting I have gotten very comfortable with, if you will. And I don’t think I was ever too uncomfortable with it. I’ve enjoyed being a podcaster. But there’s something about writing. Like writing was like so vulnerable for me. It’s like my thoughts are out there and it’s permanent. And I’m like, “Yeah, it’s the same with audio, what is wrong with you?”

But it’s out there, it’s permanent. It took me a while to overcome that with writing copy for social media. I just had to come to the point where I was like, “I said what I said.” Right? But with the book, I’m like, “Man, if I put that out there and do it like I mean it.” Yeah, it took me a minute. And I knew that I was going to have a lot of thoughts, as we worked through the book and all that stuff.

And I’m not a writer. I’m more of a talker than a writer, which is weird for an introvert, but I am more of a talker. And you need to think about this, I grew up in two countries. I spent 20 years of my life in Nigeria, and I spent another 20, well, at this point 23 in the US. And in Nigeria is the European system and it’s British English, and here it’s American English. And so I mix them up all the time, right?

And so, when it comes to writing, I’m like, “Yeah, I need someone to edit that or look at that, like you know, just leave me alone.” Right? Because there’ s British English that’s the native language from the part of Nigeria I’m from, and there’s American English, and it’s all mixed up. It’s all mixed up.

And so for me, I’m like, “I don’t want to write, you know, can’t have typos when you talk. I didn’t want to write. I was like, “Since this is so scary, I should probably embrace it and do it.” And that’s exactly what I did. Okay?

Now, I want to read a review, and this is from a doctor who wrote a review of The EntreMD Method book. I want you to pay attention to this because this is something that would have not been possible if I chose to hold on to my fears, or be scared, or quit, or any of those things. Because the reason why I shared all of this is to tell you, it’s not about you. It’s about the people that you’re called to serve, the people your business serves. It’s not about you at all, right?

Okay, so her review, five beautiful stars and then she says, “Dr. Una’s love letter to doctors by Rashmi Schramm, MD.” Okay? And she says, “I have been lucky enough to be a Doctor Una’s EntreMD Business School for over one year. Affectionately known as Dr. Una, she has the unique ability to take complex concepts and distill the most relevant information from them. And this is exactly what Dr. Una has done with this amazing book.”

She says, “There are so many pearls in the book, the themes and chapters are laid out clearly, there’s no intellectual chest thumping as you see in many other medically related books from other physicians. There is an elegant showcase for inspiring and empowering physicians. As a practicing physician, I know firsthand how toxic the medical system has become in the US over the past six years.

We are told repeatedly that we are not adept at business, that we should be quiet and let the suits take care of business. The trouble is the suits only care about money, not about patients and certainly not about physicians. Which is why this movement that Dr. Una has started to empower the physician feels so urgent.

Every physician in the US and beyond should be watching Dr. Una and how she’s conducting her life as an inspiration to what is possible for each of us. The first step to becoming more inspired and more empowered is to buy this book immediately, if not sooner. It is Dr. Una’s love letter to doctors, and it is bold, innovative, urgent, and necessary.”

Now, Dr. Rashmi, she’s been on our YouTube channel, she’s been on the podcast talking about all her wins. She’s radically changed her life in over a year, radically. Now, I want you to think about it, if I didn’t dare my fears and accept that I’m a coach. If I didn’t say yes and sign up for that $43,000 program. If I didn’t do my first EntreMD meeting, even though, I mean, it was six doctors, and that’s with all the marketing powers I had, that’s who I could gather in the room.

If I didn’t tell somebody, “Yeah, you can coach with me and it’ll be $1,000.” If I didn’t do my first big live event and sell from the stage and start that group program. If I didn’t say yes to the EntreMD Business school, if I didn’t say yes to the book, that transformation wouldn’t have happened. It wouldn’t have. And there are so many stories.

And so think about how your life can impact your world, what it’s going to do without that impact if you don’t dare your fears, if you don’t hold on even when things are hard. If you don’t stay true to your dreams, even when it looks like it’s not working.

I want to challenge you today to make the decision not to quit. I want to challenge you today to make a decision not to dabble, not to play small, but to be fully committed, to be all in your business. It’s time to start? Start. It’s time to scale? Scale. If you’ve been sitting at one level for so long but you know you’re made for more, now is the time to do the more.

They’ve told you you can’t build a multiple seven figure company, who said that? Why, because your physician? If that’s what you want to do, do it. But yes, there will be hard times. Yes, there will be times you’ll be frustrated. Yes, there are times you’ll want to quit, don’t, for the sake of the people your called to impact.

Okay, so that’s what I have for you. And if you haven’t bought the book yet, I would love for you to get a copy for yourself. And I would love you to get a copy for the physicians in your life. There’s a million physicians and we’re trying to put the word out there. At least 100,000 of them have their hands on the book. That’s what we’re trying to accomplish, okay?

And I am rooting for you. I don’t say that because it’s a cute thing to put at the end of an email, I am rooting for you. That you will learn the skills, you will be the example of what is possible, and together we are going to change the narrative for physicians in the United States, period.

Okay? All right, so thank you for listening. As always I am so excited that we are part of this movement together. And I cannot wait to hear your wins and all the amazing things you do because you’ve decided that you’re not going to quit. So I’ll see you, my friend, on the next episode of The EntreMD Podcast.

Hey, if you love listening to The EntreMD Podcast I want to invite you to join EntreMD On Demand. It is my signature subscription program that gives you access to a library of business courses designed to help you do one thing as a physician entrepreneur, and that is to thrive. Just head out to entremd.com/ondemand and I’d love to have you join us. See you on the inside.

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DR. UNA​

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