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On the Magic of Connection, Searching Our Souls, and the Humbling Devastation of Losing Your Way

Danny Iny: How to engage an audience

Sometimes the hardest things are surprisingly simple.

Not easy, but simple.

We set goals, and we strive to achieve them. We work, we reach, and we stretch in the direction we’re trying to grow.

Sometimes, we find greater success than we ever expected.

Sometimes the goal posts move and, without realizing what happened, we just keep on chasing.

And sometimes we find that, in pursuit of those goals, we’ve veered off-course, to a very different place from where we thought we’d be.

In that moment, you realize you’ve lost your way, and the soul searching begins….

Doing Well… by All the Wrong Measures

Entrepreneur lifestyle

Credit: Maureen Lauder

Whether it’s for me, for you, or for anyone else, the world of entrepreneurship is fraught with uncertainties, setbacks, and doubts.

It’s not just that “two steps forward and one step back” is par for the course. The greater challenge is that human nature fixates on the step back and forgets the steps forward.

Entrepreneurs are constantly bombarded by voices calling us to give up on our dreams and retreat to the stability and security of a conventional life.

To keep moving forward and to keep from giving up, our conviction must be stronger than all those voices, and we’re compelled to doggedly fixate on whatever seems to be working.

This is a critical defense mechanism of the entrepreneurial mind, and it comes with a fatal flaw:

Eventually, you move past that point of needing to grasp at every shred of reinforcement that you’re moving in the right direction. With hard work, good strategy, time, and a bit of luck, you reach a place where the evidence of being on the right track is plentiful and even abundant.

That’s what happened to us here at Mirasee, which led to the soul searching and conclusions that follow.

Because once we got on our way, evidence of being on the right track became very easy to find:

  • We’re connected with and respected by nearly every thought leader in the industry.
  • Our vision is shared by an audience of nearly 100,000 subscribers and followers.
  • I work with 20 of the most brilliant and dedicated minds and hearts in our space.
  • I have a shoebox overflowing with thank you cards from our students.
  • Our programs and training programs are best-in-class, and they keep getting better.
  • We attract students who resonate with our vision of business that builds a better world.
  • I’ve published multiple best-selling books (with a combined 562 5-star reviews, and counting).
  • We work hard to innovate new ways of doing things and making a difference.
  • Our community has even convened in person at our LIFT event in May 2017.

Oh, and for good measure, here’s the giant number that everybody seems to care about and be dazzled by:

  • From January 1, 2014 until this post is published, we’ve generated exactly $10,512,474 in revenues.

Not too shabby, right?

By these measures, Mirasee seems to be doing great.

Now keep in mind, some of these measures (especially the ones with big numbers attached) are vanity metrics that hardly matter at all.

But even the measures that do matter are woefully incomplete, because they’re meaningless without context.

Measuring Up Against the Ghost of Yesteryear

Firepole Marketing Mirasee Danny Iny

Mirasee began as Firepole Marketing, founded by Danny Iny and his then business partner, Peter Vogopoulos.

A lot can change in seven years.

When I started Firepole Marketing (which is now called Mirasee) in late 2010, I had just met the woman who would become my wife, and we spent the summer training for a marathon.

My previous startup company had imploded, leaving me with over a quarter of a million dollars in debt.

Not only that, but I had followed a career path that can only be described as unorthodox, leaving me without so much as a high school diploma.

In short, back then my #1 priority was to make enough money to service my debt, buy groceries, and pay the rent for my downtown studio apartment.

Yes, I cared about making an impact and doing things differently. I cared deeply about education.

But let’s be honest: my top priority was to make some money!

And it wasn’t easy. When I started this business, I had nothing to build on. No website traffic, no subscribers, no audience, no relationships with anyone in the industry, and no experience with any sort of online marketing.

Today, things look different.

I’m married, I have two kids, and I’m not nearly in the same shape I used to be. The hair on my head is thinning. The rent of my studio apartment has been replaced by a mortgage for my house in the suburbs. Amounts of money that would have seemed enormous to me back then seem paltry now (who knew kids were so expensive?!).

And the business has grown. Today we’re blessed with a massive following and are recognized leaders in our space.

And yet, when I measure results in the present, I can’t help but weigh it against the struggles of the past. Whether it’s millions in revenues, a hundred thousand subscribers, hundreds of 5-star reviews, or dozens of employees…

…they all sound very impressive compared to the big fat ZERO where I started!

But I’m not at zero anymore, and I haven’t been for a long time…

Bettering Your (Meaningful) Best: The Only Measure That Matters

Danny Iny and wife Bhoomi Pathak marathon

Danny Iny and his wife (and Mirasee’s CFO), Bhoomi Pathak, run a marathon in 2010.

So if we shouldn’t measure against our humble beginnings…

…to what should we compare ourselves, to know if we’re on track?

We have no choice but to look to ourselves. After all, the alternative is the discouragement and frustration of comparing our realities to other people’s Facebook profiles and our beginnings to others’ middles.

But the selves we should compare ourselves to are our very best selves.

The values we upheld in our greatest moments.
The work we did at our very best.
The impact we made that we are most proud of.

Those are the comparisons that provide real insight.

And when I look deeply and honestly at these measures and think about what really matters… that’s when I know something has gone terribly, horribly wrong.

The selves we should compare ourselves to are our very best selves.Click To Tweet

Mirasee Then vs. Mirasee Now

Danny Iny YouTube

One of Danny’s early YouTube videos, when he did a lot more teaching on the blog and on YouTube.

The insidious thing about slippery slopes is that they’re usually so gradual, you don’t realize you’re slipping until you’re far off the path.

But zoom the lens out a bit and you see that, as subtle as the changes may have been along the way, things have changed a lot!

Compare Mirasee  of a few years ago (Firepole Marketing, as we were called then) with Mirasee today:

And besides all that, I was much more personally connected to our audience. I answered every email myself and knew many of our audience members by name.

Now, just to be clear, it’s not like we’ve turned a full 180; we still do some of this. Just not nearly as much or as intensely as we used to.

Not by a long shot.

And does it matter? Is any of this even noticeable to anyone but me?

The Power of Connection in Cold, Hard Numbers

You bet it is.

A couple of weeks ago, we ran an epic, landmark survey of our audience to get a sense of how we’re doing—what’s working well and what we can do better.

Since all this was on my mind, I slipped in a few questions to help us get a sense of whether this was just my gut yearning for the good old days or something more.

The data came back, cold and stark, in the answers to these three questions:

  1. “Are you a Mirasee student?” (i.e., have they invested in one or more of our courses?)
  2. “Compared to other experts and companies that you follow, where does Mirasee rank?” (i.e., do they trust us over other voices in the industry?)
  3. “How likely are you to recommend Mirasee’s training programs to a friend or colleague?”

When you compare the answers of survey respondents who’ve known us since those good old days with the answers of respondents who just came to know us this year, the contrast is impossible to miss: those who knew us back in the day were dramatically more likely to invest in our programs, trust us over others in the industry, and recommend us to their peers.

How to Engage an Audience: Survey Results

Clearly, this “magic of Mirasee” is more than just my personal nostalgia.

The magic matters.

So why has it gone away?

You Don’t Know What You’ve Got ‘Til It’s Gone

Audience connection through emails

Responding personally to emails is no mean feat when you have an audience of 100,000 people. Lizzie Merritt, Mirasee’s Director of Education, orients the team to respond to support emails. Credit: Christy Campbell

Some changes were strategic—at least, that’s what we intended them to be.

We’ve worked hard to raise the bar on everything we produced and to improve (even guarantee) results for our students. But any decision comes with trade-offs, and some of what got pushed off are the exact things I mentioned earlier.

Other changes were a simple matter of logistics.

After all, it’s easier to be connected to 10,000 people than it is to 100,000. As our team grew and my role shifted from frontman entrepreneur to coordinating CEO, some of my old patterns were assigned to members of my team. Others just fell by the wayside. Too much to do, too little time.

And some changes… well, they just happened.

We never planned to stop sharing the behind-the-scenes picture of what we were doing, for example. Neither did we plan for me to stop writing for the blog. Both initiatives simply fell between the cracks.

The magic had always been there, so we took it for granted. We didn’t realize just how valuable, special, or precious it was, so we didn’t make the effort it took to preserve it.

That’s a part of the story. But as I reflect, I realize there’s more.

The more and deeper I looked, the clearer it became that only one person was responsible.

Me.

How an Energetic Entrepreneur Became a Cynical CEO

Danny Iny Mirasee

It’s not just our efforts that had drifted off course.

It was also my personal energy and attention.

Because let’s be honest. On a deep level, I always knew all this was important. I’ve felt it in my bones, talked about it in countless interviews, and credited it for our incredible success.

But leaning into that sort of magic takes an optimism, enthusiasm, and buoyancy of spirit about the work you do and the people for whom you do it.

That bright-eyed outlook can be difficult to maintain in the face of seven years of hard reality.

I’ve said frequently and publicly how wonderful this magical adventure has been for me and how grateful I am to be a part of it.

That’s the truth… but not the whole truth.

The whole truth is that some parts of the journey have been difficult and painful, even heartbreaking.

I love and respect the people I work with, and I’m proud of their commitment, dedication, and talents.

But some have hurt me deeply, like the ones I mentored through the beginning of their careers… who left without so much as a perfunctory thank you.

Or the one for whom I went out on a limb to help through a difficult personal situation… who repaid me by stealing $20,000 from the company’s bank accounts and disappearing into the night.

I hold my colleagues and partners in the highest esteem and count many as personal friends. But not the ones whose business practices turned out to be shady, who broke promises, who lied about what they could deliver, whose caring and values were all pretense and no substance, and whose bad actions ultimately damaged my reputation and credibility.

And I have nothing but appreciation and admiration for our students’ aspirations and dedication to bettering themselves so they can better the world. I enjoy my interactions with them… except for the ones who never follow through on their commitments, who blame me and my team for their shortcomings, and who go so far as to heap insults, abuse, and even slander on us for our attempts to help them.

Now, to be fair, this sort of thing is a given when dealing with several dozen employees, hundreds of partners, thousands of students, or a hundred thousand audience members. Every so often Murphy’s Law and the Law of Large Numbers simply converge. And, to be fair, these experiences are statistical rarities for us.

But as an audience and business grow, so too does a tiny percentage of it. In raw numbers, the volume only increased.

Nor is it just a matter of volume.

In some ways, the role of CEO is like that of a high-school principal.Click To Tweet

In some ways, the role of CEO is like that of a high-school principal. The kids who get called into your office are almost never the good ones who love you and make you proud!

The raw numbers grew, as did my relative exposure to them as against all the good people we work with and serve. Now, I still love and respect the people I work with, hold my colleagues and partners in the highest esteem, and have nothing but appreciation for our students…

…and at the same time, slowly but surely, all the bad parts of the journey began to grate on me—especially over the last two years, which I experienced through a sleep-deprived haze, courtesy of my young children.

The Painful Challenge of Great Expectations

Mirasee Core Values

Early in this journey, in a moment of sore disappointment, my wife suggested that perhaps I expected too much of people.

I remember my answer clearly:

“If you have high expectations of people, you might often be disappointed. But sometimes they’ll surprise you and meet, or even exceed those expectations. That’s so much better than keeping your expectations low and having them met every time.”

Yet lately, my habit has been to expect a lot less. And of course, my expectations are met every time.

So which of these is wisdom?

Could it be the development of better insight and judgment, combined with the preservation of optimism and beliefs that make them worthwhile?

That’s as good a working definition as any, and it underscores how far I still have to go to be the CEO and leader (not to mention husband and father) I aspire to be.

Oh, and just to be clear, if it sounds like I’m being unfairly harsh on myself, I’m not. I know that, compared to a lot of people, I’m doing just fine. Compared to a lot of businesses, Mirasee is an example to be followed.

But those comparisons don’t matter, do they?

The only comparison that matters is the one against the best version of ourselves.

The only comparison that matters is against the best version of ourselves.Click To Tweet

As author and business consultant Nicole Dean challenges us to answer: “What would awesome you do?”

And on that measure, both I and Mirasee can—and must—do better.

3 Reasons Why….

Mirasee LIFT live event

Nothing beats meeting our audience in person, face-to-face.

After reading all this (assuming you’re still with me!), your head might be swimming with questions.

And foremost in your mind is a simple one: “Why?”

Why are you sharing this with us, Danny?
What do you hope to accomplish?
What is your goal?

I can think of three reasons…

…and the first one is about ME.

I needed to think through all this and say it out loud (as it were) to affirm that I still care about all the things that once drove me.

Because jaded and cynical as I may sometimes be, I do still care.

The most meaningful moments of my professional life are the ones in which I learn about the impact and success of my students. I still believe wholeheartedly in the power of business education to change our world and in the power and romance of entrepreneurship—so much so that this simple video, which I’ve seen dozens of times, still brings a tear to my eye.

The second reason is about YOU.

If you’ve been part of our tribe since way back when, I want you to know how much I appreciate your sticking with us, and how committed I am to bringing back the connection we had in those good old days.

If you’re relatively new to our world, I thank you for your leap of faith and vote of confidence, and I want you to know that, while things are pretty decent now, I’m committed to make things a whole lot better.

And if you’ve ever had a dream you drifted away from, know that it happens to the best of us (even though we don’t always advertise the fact!). And I believe any path you can veer away from can be returned to.

Finally, the third reason is about US.

Danny Iny LIFT San Diego

LIFT, Mirasee’s first live event, took place in San Diego in 2017.

Because from the beginning, what made Mirasee special wasn’t me or any other individual person.

Rather, it was those magical connections between people.

It was that magic of being in it together, in pursuit of and service to the better world we all know is there for us to create… just so long as we’re brave, bold, and hopeful enough to keep reaching for it.

I was in a bit of a haze for a while, but I’m back to being hopeful and reaching.

And I hope reaching is something we can do together.

About Danny Iny

Danny Iny (@DannyIny) is the CEO and founder of Mirasee, host of the Business Reimagined podcast, and best-selling author of multiple books including Engagement from Scratch!, The Audience Revolution, and Teach and Grow Rich.

207 comments

  1. Very open and honest, thank you for sharing. I can certainly relate to many of the things you discussed here. It takes courage to put this out there, but as you can see from the comments, it makes you much more approachable, relatable and human.

  2. Dear Danny,
    It took me some time to respond and my reply might seem like old news to you now, since you have moved on. I did want to do your request for feedback justice and that takes thought and time. Asking for feedback from a community of people most of whom you probably do not know personally anymore is very courageous.

    Here is mine and I hope you find it useful.
    I think we are sometimes like the magicians apprentice. We create things and before we know it, what we created has turned into something we do not recognise anymore. It’s the law of unexpected outcomes: for every one expectation we have about the outcomes, there will be at least three we did not anticipate or even welcome. So, you are at the moment suffering from the unexpected outcomes of your own success. You turned from being an engaged entrepreneur and teacher into a CEO with responsibilities and tasks far removed from what you initially set out to do. And your business has turned corners in directions you now feel are not what you had in mind. You want to course correct. The pattern you are describing seems to be in line with the observations the economist E.F. Schumacher made in his book “Small is Beautiful” over thirty years ago. If you do not know the book, I encourage you to read it. One of the things Schumacher states is that if a business grows beyond human size, it starts to become inhuman and destroys the most meaningful aspects of what makes being an entrepreneur so fulfilling – a sense of purpose and connection. On a bigger scale it destroys society and it’s most important values. Most people think bigger is always better. I cannot agree less. Still, you have grown that big with your business and you want to work out how to stay true to your values and purpose. I applaud you for that! It makes me feel good about being your student. I want to let you know that I have found being a student with the Course Builders Laboratory has been very valuable for me. Not least because I feel that I am not alone with the things I need to learn, but have a coach who helps me in whatever way she can. So I really appreciate this gift.

    Here are a few things that came to my mind whilst reading your blog. You are talking about expectations. In my mindfulness courses I always tell people that in my mind the road to hell is not so much paved with good intentions, as the saying goes, but with expectations. Whenever we can let go of our expectations and stay with what actually is, we are much more free to respond appropriately and with integrity. This is because we are more likely to see reality a bit more clearly and not distorted through our assumptions, beliefs and habitual ways of thinking. Letting go of expectations is not easy, because we very often do not even know that we hold expectations until we come up against a disappointment. And in the world of business it almost seems like a crazy idea to not have expectations, e.g. goals, expected outcomes etc. Still, it might be worth your while playing with this concept as it is truly liberating and helps to avoid a lot of heartache and misunderstandings between people. I wonder how you would feel about those people you felt had let you down, did not appreciate your efforts or harmed you by stealing from you, if you could let go of your expectations there and truly opened yourself to what their experience with you might have been like? Do you fully understand their motivations, or even see their perspective of the situation? This type of enquiry does not mean that you become a push over or lose your values. It is about being open to the fact that we are all very different. For that you need to hold your values lightly or put them aside for a while and truly be willing to see things through somebody else eyes. It is about being able to acknowledge that reality can look very different from somebody else’s perspective than yours.
    Sometimes it is even more helpful to explore the expectation we hold and what drives us to have them. What are the values and beliefs that feed the expectation? And are those life-enhancing for you?

    I think as long as you remain willing to reflect on what is happening with you and your business, as you have just done you will remain on the right track, since you are able to course correct when you do this.

    1. Britta, thank you so much for this – it means a great deal to me.

      Your comments are spot on, and I appreciate the book recommendation – I’m going to check it out!

      You’re so right about letting go of expectations – that feels very aligned with Stoic philosophy – powerful, and so hard to do.

      With deep gratitude,

  3. Danny, thank you for writing this. Truly. I just completed the homework for the final module of the Business Ignition Bootcamp. I have to tell you that I shed some tears working through the assignment that applied to advancing my own business. I tell you this because after reading your post, I can very much relate to your struggles on various levels. First, in the not too distant past, I found myself in a social group that was like family to me, and after several decades and advancing into higher levels of leadership, I began to become disillusioned. The lack of integrity that was exposed in a small number of higher leadership, and the personal hurts that occurred were very real. It was one of the most painful experiences of my life. It made me re-evaluate life as I knew it and to recognize that a person’s character and honesty were of the utmost importance to me…much more than their success. Let me thank you personally for portraying those characteristics here. Your self-awareness and transparency are like gold to me.
    Secondly, after multiple health challenges, I’ve pretty much taken a sabbatical from seeing clients for my business for almost the past year to recover. When I came across CBL and finally decided to join the program, I knew I would need to face my fears to get my business started back up again, not knowing how/if my health would withstand everything. BIB really made me face my fears because I knew little to nothing about business, really, and it is forcing me to look at steps to moving forward. I know that the “best me” is still hiding in there and needs to come back out. But in times of emotional pain, it is really easy to withdraw. Thank you for pressing through the pain, for personally putting yourself out there again, for offering such valuable services to me and many others, for believing in us and our unique impact on the world, and for just being you. What a gift connecting with you and Mirasee has been for me. I’m one of the “newbies,” but I can say that I have benefited quite a bit, even if it wasn’t with what you consider “your best.” I really look forward to getting to know you better and interacting with you and your team more. The treasure chest just got opened a bit wider, and I can clearly see the elements of greater value shining through brightly. You and your team are the treasures. I am truly blessed to be a part of the lower-level Mirasee team.

    1. Linda, thank you so much for these wonderful words – they mean so much to me!

      I’m grateful, and also so proud of your hard work in the Bootcamp. The hardest part is to fall down, get back up, and do so with the same optimism we had when we started. But that’s really what we need to do, isn’t it? 🙂

  4. Hello Danny – After reading your blog entry, I recognized a theme that must happen to any successful entrepreneur, and that is the space that builds between the business principal and the individual customer as the enterprise becomes more successful. When you were Firepole Marketing, you probably knew, or at least recognized, each of your customers’ names. If you went to conventions or seminars and saw any of those folks, you would probably recognize them, stop, and visit. Today, the sheer numbers prevent that from happening, and I’m not sure how that fact can be overcome. What must be recognized is that, at the customers’ end, that phenomenon does not occur. When I, for instance, plunked down my fee for the CBL, I was buying “Danny Iny.” And, that was for a good reason; all the marketing for Mirasee is done by you. Most of the CBL modules are, at least, introduced by you, and any messages, such as the pop-up that I receive when I leave this page is presented by you. You are the face of Mirasee, but as I apply the information from the CBL modules, and need to interface with Mirasee, I have Hanna and, if necessary, Diane with whom to communicate. I had Lesley, but I understand she’s gone on to other things. Now, I’ve been around the block, so I understand the impossible task of staying in touch with the customer base. I really don’t expect to have access to you, nor do I really think it is crucial to do so. But, others with less experience in the real world may feel let down that they don’t have that line of communication, and may respond with vitriolic comments that blame you, your staff, and Mirasee in general for all of their professional and business-oriented shortfalls. So, what to do? One suggestion is to allow others, besides you and your course manager, to present the face of Mirasee…especially those with whom the customers are more likely to interface. I would love to see a presentation by Hanna and thereby have a face and voice to put with the email messages I receive. That would also lend credibility for the knowledge and capability of those support folks and, who knows, it might also be a perk for them to do a presentation.
    Danny, I staunchly believe that my investment in the CBL will eventually help me reach the goal I wish to achieve. When I do need assistance or a shove to get me going, I know that it can’t be from you, directly. The sheer volume of your business prevents that. But, it would be very beneficial to know that the person who is available to me is a sufficiently integral part of Mirasee to actually be entrusted to present a face of the organization.

    1. George, thank you for this.

      You’re right on the money, and it’s an interesting balance.

      On the one hand, I should be (and want to be) more present and involved with our audience and students.

      But at the same time, we need to bring more of the great people that I work with front and center, so everyone feels connected with them, and knows what good hands they’re in.

      I appreciate you!

  5. Danny, thank you so much for sharing this with us. As someone who aspires to be where you are, it’s easy to get caught up in the fantasy of How great it would be to have/do/be like that! How all my problems would be solved if only I had that kind of income/subscribers/relationships.

    Thank you for pulling back the curtain to give us a glimpse of what it’s really like, the good and the bad, so that we’re not too disappointed when we get there 🙂 I appreciate how what you’ve shared with us is both realistic and optimistic. As a natural optimist myself, who is often disappointed by life/people who don’t live up to my high expectations, it is great to have a mentor like you who manages to find the balance.

    Keep up the amazing work you are doing. No matter what track you are on, you’re always doing your best. And that’s the most anyone can expect of you.

    Best wishes always,

    Sara

  6. Hi Danny,
    Thank you for this terrific post–the first I’ve read in a few years. Written from your heart and received in my heart.
    As you know, timing is everything. I have been with you since Firepole days…attended one of your free boot camps, thank you. Back then, you brought a level of reality to my goal of leadership development in countries on the African continent. I enrolled in CBL and then life required other priorities.
    Like you, my life and thinking have evolved. Now, I’m in a place where I can devote the focus and energy to getting my program developed and launched using your remarkable tools in the next several months. It’s good to be back.

    1. Hey Marguerite, thank you for this – and absolutely, everything happens in the right time. 🙂

      Are you already hooked up with a coach, or would you like me to re-connect you?

  7. Danny,

    Wow! i am in your Business Ignition Bootcamp right now and have only known of you for a year. But I want to say a couple of things.

    First, you are the genuine article, a businessman, mentor, and highly ethical leader who has the guts to tell the truth and go back to basics. I have learned a lot from you and certainly think you and Mirasee are making an important mark in the world, one I hope to emulate.

    Second, looking at those statistics I had another thought — when I learned of Mirasee, the online marketing space was already way more crowded than in 2010. There are so many more competitors and the price point varies widely. So the view I have is that once people get connected for more than 2 years, they become loyal.

    Thanks Danny, for your blog post. I admire you and the Mirasee team greatly!

  8. Hi Danny,

    I really appreciate your post here. The reason I have been following your work for years is because of the way that you and your staff make me feel as though each person matters. While I’m not an entrepreneur at the moment, I have gained a lot of confidence in my ability to move my career in other directions and a lot of that comes from being a part of your journey.

    I wish you the best and thanks for being here!

    Lauren

  9. Hi Danny,
    I wrote you a private note saying this post is going to be required reading at my next staff meeting, but I didn’t tell you why, other than mentioning your clear writing with the capacity for the retrospective voice indicative of one who has “worked through.”

    The bigger reason why I loved and respected this piece is because, as one who has had a growing and sustainable entrepreneurship for 32 years, I appreciate the way you validate the later stages of the entrepreneurial journey while previewing the “coming attractions” for those who are still in the building and launching phases.

    There are many out there who can talk about the external process of becoming a successful entrepreneur, but you’re my first choice among those who explore it from the process level. I want to read this again, more slowly, taking time to filter it through my own parallel narrative and making note of the places I can layer down into deepened understandings of my own phases and stages. (Each of) Our personal stories are of course very different; the larger story remains archetypal.

    As a note, I was with you in the early Firepole days and then checked out for some years and then tuned back in when the rebranding happened. I was very curious about that choice so Mirasee was on my radar but way in background until your new book, which I bought for myself and my staff (we’re in online education) and then I was all in with the LIFT conference, which was 3-D maniestation of what you have built. After that it was a natural next step for ACES, which — no joke — has moved me further toward a program overhaul in six weeks than I have been able to accomplish on my own in four (count them, four) years. So however you got here, your process is working, and I’m glad to be on the ride.

    1. Kay, thank you so much for this – it really means a lot. And I’m thrilled to hear that things moving so well for you in ACES!

      I’d love to hear your thoughts as you go through the post again – your learnings for yourself will probably be valuable for me as well, and I’d love to know what they are. 🙂

      I’m very much looking forward to seeing you in Montreal in November,

  10. Danny, that connection you speak of is obviously vital… and the fact that those who’ve know you longer have a greater connection with you and trust you more than those who’ve had less time knowing you is both significant and to be expected. Your honesty and self-examination are qualities to be applauded! And connections made, or reinforced, through live events can only shorten that “getting-to-know-you-better” period… so wishing you the very best!

  11. Danny, I first learned about you during the Firepole Marketing era, and was so impressed with your openness and honesty. I had been “taken” by several scammers, and left broke and aware of just how much I didn’t know. I began learning through your posts and free offerings. I am still paying off my early mistakes of believing the wrong people, so it is so nice to know you are still the kindhearted and thoughtful person you were in the Firepole Marketing days!

    I did miss your emails, and although I could not afford to do anything that cost money (and still can’t), it was so nice to be able to take advantage of the free teachings. I am still learning from other free teachings, and plan to write some books. My life has become very tied down as my husband continues to decline in health — I am his caregiver, with some help from our daughter. Many of my hopes have had to be put on hold for now, as has my book writing.

    Delays in our hopes and plans can happen to all of us, as can life changes. A marriage and two young children is a huge life change! Your path had a huge change, so don’t feel guilty — that’s just how life is! You are a good person with good values, so you will make it okay. Thank you for your openness in sharing your story!

    1. Thank you, Barbara. I appreciate the kind words, and the encouragement.

      And I’m sorry to hear about your husband’s health. That can’t be easy, and I applaud you for the time and energy that you still find to invest in others.

      What are you looking to build right now? And how might we help you to do it?

    2. Danny yours is truelly about magical connections. Your posts make people look forward to reading the next blog. I like it when you say you respect people you work with.
      The truth about your journey suggests you are genuine, that’s reflects in growth in numbers. People want someone they can rely on to deliver on promises. I’m not a a Mirasee student but your inspirations are encouraging enough to make one wish to start a blog post. Could you please advise me on what to do exactly to make a blog or post. I w’d like to try it raw and unbaked as i sound… I guess I’m uncertain..but can try.

      1. Hey Dorothy, thank you so much for the kind words – they mean a lot.

        And to answer your question I have to ask questions. You said you want to write a bog post. About what? And serving whom?

  12. Danny, your blog post is profound and shows your struggle beautifully. Thanks for having the courage to share it with a bunch of strangers.

    I do have some questions that I wonder whether you included in your inward journey:

    1) To what extent have you bought into the cultural belief that “more is better”?
    2) Is more better? Or is that a capitalistic lie?
    3) What are the spiritual principles that most profoundly guide your BE-ingness?
    4) Does any part of identifying as CEO of Mirasee block those principles from being the guiding energies of your life?
    5) Are there any other cultural “lies” that you unconsciously assume to be true?
    6) If so, do they influence you as a professional person?

    My sense is that you have come to a knowingness of a deep truth; that the only really important contributions we make to humanity are those that are made in personal relationships. With truly accepting the importance of relationship comes the imperative to make the powerful decision to pay attention to the most important relationships in our lives. I’m not a Christian, but the comparison to Jesus pops to my mind. He basically had a dozen or so really important relationships. By being powerfully committed to those, he changed the world.

    This last part is a suggestion. I find it hard to feel a connection to the you through your videos, (which is my only real access to you) because they are “too slick.” I feel like you’re performing rather than relating and teaching. The inserts that are supposed to help me “get” the points you’re making are cute, but they distract me from you. I’d like to feel a relationship with you – albeit a virtual relationship. How about if you sit down, bring the camera closer, look directly at “me” (the camera) and talk in the compassionate and caring tones that you use on the group phone calls? Hearing you speak with someone about their struggles has been more helpful to me than anything else in either of the Mirasee classes I’m taking.

    1. Hi Connie, thank you for this – I appreciate your comments, your questions, and your suggestions.

      Regarding the cultural belief that more is better, no, that’s not something that I believe in – unless more is what is required to achieve specific goals that make sense and are important without more being the only justification for them.

      As for whether it’s a capitalist lie, no, I don’t think it is. Actually, I think there’s an equal counter-cultural belief that there’s something wrong with more, than some people use to protect themselves from having to act as their best selves. Also dangerous.

      Your questions make some value judgment assumptions about what is inherently good and what is inherently bad, and I wonder if it might serve you to re-examine those assumptions, and consider whether there’s a more nuanced way to see things?

  13. Well said and well-written! Your transparency is so refreshing in this age of egregious fakery. I agree with your focusing on what is most important in your life, but here we diverge. I haven’t taken your marketing courses, because I have nothing to market. I am formal poet, rhyme and meter, and my interest is in developing my craft. I do well enough on today’s version of the dole, given my ascetic attitude toward property, and I will not pay to publish or monetize my Blog, Poetry, Prose, and Anything Goes. I don’t know exactly how many followers I have since no need for stats. That’s for advertisers, so no ads there ever.

    Anyway, thank you for this interesting read. For people who are interested in selling something, oops, sorry, marketing, your openness tells me you will giving them real information, workable information.

    1. Hi Alan, thank you for this – I appreciate the kind words.

      I’m also curious – if you have no interest in selling or marketing your work, why do you follow mine?

  14. Danny,
    You are a brilliant thinker, one of the best lights of insight to guide us and, one of the few humanitarians who is whiling to share his gifts with his followers and the world. Greatness is never diminished in the fact that one steps off the path, loses their way or finds themselves on the slippery slope. To fall is human. To realize what happened, get back up and find the way again is the rarity that earns grit and experience for the true professional willing to do it.

    You have gone to the edge of the abyss and found both your truth and a way to spread the good news. Danny, you are a leader among men, and I am glad to know and work with you. We don’t give up and don’t give in. We learn, pivot and grow.

    Thank you for all you have done for me and all of us.

    Mike

  15. Hi Danny,
    I am one of the new students, I bought your CBL because of attention and engagement I received from your team. Once there, I am still amaze how engaging your team is. Every single email have been answer. Hanna is the MOST AMAZING COACH!
    I referred your program to one of my friends because of the quality of the course but the number #1 reason: The support I received.

    Thank you for showing us the lows and the highs of the entrepreneurial journey!

  16. Danny, this is why I will always happily recommend you to my audience. Vulnerability and authenticity combine with high competency for real trustworthiness. Thanks for continuing on the journey and showing your human-ness.

  17. Hello Danny.
    Robyn here. Remember me back as a missionary in Germany trying to figure out how to do all you were teaching me in Firepole Marketing whilst in a foreign country as a non-Profit missionary worker, questioning the ethical side of selling something that my supporters were paying me to do for others free?
    Yes, you helped me through those murky waters. And no, I didn’t make any money. But I learned a lot. And I think you did too!

    Then God brought me back to the states about the same time as you changed from Firepole Marketing to Mirasee. And I’ve been hunkered down since then trying new ideas and moving forward in your teaching.

    I’m still small. But, I have over 130 emails that go out weekly, a few members in our Reading, Reflection and Bible Community from all over the world and am branching out to sell a few books in our store by this time next year. I blog weekly and have relationship that I am honing and more that I need to invest in.

    I am thankful for your guidance. I consider you a great mentor and as a 60 year old woman that can no longer teach/speak (they discovered a neurological disorder called Spasmodic Dysphonia) for more than an hour or so, I have been blessed to have this venue.

    I’m glad to call you my mentor, and as that is what many have called me, I consider it a priveledge to be here with you teaching and me receiving.

    1. Hey Robyn, of course I remember you – it’s great to hear from you, and I appreciate your kind words.

      What is most exciting about your work right now? And how can we best support you with it?

  18. Wow, Danny-I just scrolled through so many heartfelt responses to your post and realized just for you to be able to get so much love back from so many people like this is AWESOME, and THAT ALONE should put a smile of satisfaction on your face 🙂 It’s quite an accomplishment!

    Thanks for having the courage to be wide-open-Ira

    Ira Lovitch
    Full-time Faculty, Mount Saint Mary’s University-Los Angeles

  19. Danny,
    I bow to your openness and humbleness in this post. You really opened your kimono on this one. Thank you for trusting us.

    In the few years we were connected in the mastermind I came to know your drives and passions. I saw that proving yourself, changing the world, and making money drove you. I know you to be a generous man. I know you to be a man of ideals and aspirations.

    Then I sensed you change. Not from being kind, generous, idyllic, and aspiring, but to not keeping people as your priority. As you said, the money became the driving force. As that change happened I felt you get harder — colder maybe.

    Now I’m sensing the balance returning to your being. I sense the warm, soft-hearted guy with big ideals and passions returning. That makes me smile and feel gratitude. Your gifts will take you further when you keep your priorities straight. You’ll make money and be happy.

    Thank you. You’ve taught me a lot with this message.

    1. Thank you, Kit – I appreciate your friendship.

      I’m not sure I’d characterize it the same way – I don’t think money ever became more important to me than people.

      But nonetheless, I take your feedback to heart. Thank you.

      1. Danny, I didn’t mean to give you the idea that I saw money as being more important than people to you. I mostly was reflecting that I felt people become less important and money become more important, each in relation to themselves not each other. Does that make sense.

        The bottom line: I’m glad to see you stepping back and reevaluating where your heart is. 🙂

  20. Hey Danny!

    Congrats! You are a real – live – breathing – authentic human being!! Thank you for your transparency and humility. Both are beautiful qualities!

    Life is tough and entrepreneurship with a young family compounds the battle! But a healthy dose of self reflection mixed with hard work and a sprinkle of wisdom seems to have you on solid ground.

    I’ve been around since the fire pole days (always thought that was a great name btw). This blog post comes at an interesting time as I’m re-reading Teach and Grow Rich. I will finish reading and listening (Audible) with a freshl set of ears and eyes!

    TL;DR

    – You are on the right track!
    – The “Insdie View” is much more important than the outside perfect view the world sees.
    – Humility & Transparency are beautiful strengths
    – Being present and intentional is challenging but so worth it. Drifting sucks.
    – Love your wife and babies…you can always rebuild business but you have such a short time with your children.
    – Stay in touch with your audience and customers. Without them, there is no Mirasee.

    Cheers,

    Mike Estes

    1. Thank you, Mike. I appreciate the kind words, and the reminders. Thank you for sticking with us through the years. And I’d love to hear your thoughts on Teach and Grow Rich as you re-read – are you going through the first edition (which is all we’ve got in audio format), or the second edition?

  21. Thank you, Danny,

    I was first exposed to your company as Mirasee by an affiliate. I have not purchased a course, yet. I did download ‘Teach and Grow Rich’ yet unread, because I am a teacher – yet unpublished. I appreciate your heart to truly make a difference, mostly by remaining sincere and transparent.

    I appreciate your candor in this blog and took the time to read it through. I’d not seen the Grasshopper.com video before! I brought tears to my eyes throughout its 2 minutes of speed reading.

    I can list the obstacles still to be overcome in my young life of 63 years – not here, tho. I am fully anticipating to have the impact on those I am destined to serve and inspire. May you continue to share your heart and risk being taken advantage of in the process. I trust you are working on (if not yet there) forgiving those who have done wrong, knowing they are truly the ones robbed by their choices.

    And may you continue to love from a pure heart, continue being the loving husband and dad and insightful CEO of Mirasee.

    1. Thank you, Constance. I appreciate the comment, and the kind words that you shared in it.

      Indeed, may we all continue to grow to be better than we are today.

      How might we support you in becoming the published teacher that you’re working towards becoming?

  22. “Business is about building a sustainable way of making the impact that you care about making.” – Danny Iny.
    This is posted beside my desk and I refer to it often. It really is about connection and I have no regrets for committing to Coursebuilders in the fall of 2015.
    Thank you for sharing your struggles, we all have them and I can relate to what you’ve shared – “It’s not just that “two steps forward and one step back” is par for the course. The greater challenge is that human nature fixates on the step back and forgets the steps forward.” Time to remind myself of a few things, too!

  23. Danny,

    Thanks for your transparency. It is inspiring to be reminded that challenges are a part of everyone’s journey…even those who have reached high levels of success. I love that you are willing to really look at what your company is doing and honestly evaluate what is working and what isn’t. Thank you for what you do – even amid the challenges and disappointments.

    Thanks,
    Janet

  24. Danny,

    Thanks for your transparency. It’s inspiring and helpful to your readers (me, at least!) to see the side of the story that isn’t “pretty” or that doesn’t feel successful. It is easy to simply see the beautiful side of success without realizing all the hardships that go along with it too. It’s important to realize that set- backs are part of the program for us all, even those who are doing really well.

    Thank you for keeping at it, even with all the challenges!

    Janet

  25. Thank you, Danny. You have been and continue to be a beacon of inspiration and hope on this entrepreneurial journey. You have my respect and admiration. Thank you for your authenticity and vulnerability. I look forward to seeing what happens next at Mirasee.

  26. God bless you, Danny! I just bought your book and this blog post is so inspiring. I wish you and the team only good things as you move forward in achieving your mission. – L

  27. Hi Danny, I appreciate your vulnerability, and the open and honest blog you shared with your community.
    You’re on the Hero’s Journey and it’s not easy. Being a true Leader’s not easy. Like all Hero’s you got lost. I respect you even more for your Courage. and Integrity. It means a lot to me to be a part of your community. You are making a difference now and for the future.
    Thank you for reminding all of us that the most important thing is being true to ourselves and our values.

  28. Danny,

    What a great phrase, “Doing well, by all the wrong measures.”

    I’m a former therapist who worked with many entrepreneurs (and continue to do that as a coach now) who went through similar things to what you describe.

    It took them a long time to get help because they were embarrassed and cynical. What you shared goes a long way to alleviate that by letting others know they’re far from alone.

    Very few of them had ever heard of “Post Traumatic GROWTH,” the other side of the coin of “Post Traumatic STRESS.” Knowing they could get far more from their lives being turned upside down than it took from them was a new concept for them.

    I was betrayed by a business partner and friend as well. I will never forget the pain of that but I will also never forget the growth that eventually came from my own “dark night of the soul.”

    Thank you for sharing what you did.

    1. Thank you for sharing that, Alan. It’s not easy, but a bit easier to know that no experience is unique, and all is shared.

      And thank you for the insight. I had never heard of post traumatic growth – and I appreciate the share!

      1. Danny, I’m glad I mentioned Post Traumatic Growth. Mine led me to rethink “happiness” and to my book Seven Secrets to Enlightened Happiness: Your Guide to the Life You Were Meant to LIve and then a two-hour audio course. A colleague of mine kept urging me to write a book on how to master stress and that didn’t feel right. I thought the emphasis on stress was misplaced and the most effective way to master stress was to build the capacity for “happiness”–which I define as “any form of positive energy” but also allows us to embrace our shadow self and what others call “negative” emotions. Your post and the ensuing discussion is inspiring for all of us.

  29. Danny, I remember connecting with you in the days of Firepole Marketing, and I admit I drifted off as you grew and grew. But I was all kinds of happy for you, and planned to jump back on when your offerings spoke to my current callings and projects. Thank you for taking the risk and being an authentic leader. Just coming off my time at Hive Global Leaders Project (something I’d recommend for rekindling your soul to take those early risks with this stage of Mirasee), I see you in the mess, and would love to collaborate from my niche to bring you to a new place, possibly based on an old place. 🙂

    Thank you for being you. Keep climbing through the messes. Much love.

  30. Hi Danny,
    Thank you for writing this post and sharing your deep feelings. I came to Mirasee at the beginning of 2017 and registered to CBL based on the recommendation of a blogger and writer I highly respect and admire.
    I’m very appreciative of all my learning and accomplishment of this year based on the support and guidance of you and your team of coaches. Even if we have never personally connected, and I’m not a Mirasee “old-timer”, my perception of you as a person and of Mirasee and the people associated with it is that of honesty, trust and hard work.
    Perhaps, in your view, your efforts have drifted off course, but what is important is your willingness to self reflect and make the changes you consider necessary. Keep on taking consistent and imperfect actions!

    1. Leyla, you expressed so eloquently what I feel myself (having also begun at the beginning of 2017). @Danny, your ability and willingness to self-reflect is a huge strength and it sounds like a great opportunity to get back into touch with what is most real and fulfilling to YOU. Congratulations! This is a good thing. (:

      1. Leyla, that means a lot to me – thank you.

        And I want you to know that every so often I hear updates about your progress from my coaching team – they, and I, are very proud of what you’re accomplishing.

        Thank you for your hard work, and know that we’re in your corner – always!

  31. Hi Danny,

    Thank you for sharing and for showing that everyone has to face a demon now and then.

    Life today is very stressful. As an entrepreneur working alone sometimes you forget that there are people around you. People who can help you. People who love you the way you are. People who will do you wrong. All these people in your life are there for a reason. They are there to teach you. To challenge you and to help you grow as an individual.

    Thank you for being there and for sharing your business and personal life with us.

  32. Thanks Danny,

    Hitting that button was the best thing you could do.

    Sharing experiences, especially in area of common interest, inspires. We all may not have faced it. But sharing help us to learn first hand from those who had.

    This piece was timely and I am personally glad and grateful for its depth and insightful information.

    Glad you hit my mail again after a while.

    Thanks and continue to keep the passion and vision align.

  33. Hello Danny.
    Hitting that button was the best thing you did.

    Personally I learn a lot from this article. I believe odd experience help us to reflect and take better control of things. Re-prioritizing and re-directing help us to maximize energy input.

    I’m glad to see you hit my email. It been a long wait and the cold was beginning to form. But what a warmth to have this piece at the moment.

    Thanks and continue to keep both the passion and vision align.

  34. Danny,
    I truly appreciate your vulnerability.

    It sounds like you have ventured into a ” dark night of the soul” which paradoxically is one of the best places for growth. A place of dryness, where the streams of success, what our ego drinks in to keep it propped up, becomes a trickle.

    Yes – comparisons can be dangerous. And to compare to our best selves can be very dangerous.

    The grating you write about is a personal signal that you are likely not fuelling yourself like you used to. Stress behaviours are a wonderful indicator, like the gas gauge in your car, that you are running low on fuel. Your strengths, all that great stuff you have done and will do as an exceptional leader is dependent on having the energy you need. This energy is psychological. And it is dependent on you getting your own unique blend of what really works for you. (Made up of passions and other key factors in your work and home life. )

    Expecting more of others and more of ourselves is natural and healthy. We reach and stretch. We run hard. We fake it till we make it. This discipline builds skill-sets and strengths. It expands our capacity.
    And for many leaders, the strengths we learn, and who we become takes us a long long way from home. We forget who we are … we forget what fuels us… and we ever slowly loose our way, our passions, and burn more fuel than we ingest.

    So I must say that on this point I disagree with you Danny. I don’t think “the only comparison that matters is against the best version of ourselves”. Our “best self” is the FRUIT of a well cared for tree. The most important comparison is how we CARE FOR OUR ROOTS – our deep selves – how we are structuring our lives, in our new found success. Our roots – are those deep and vulnerable parts of who we really are, that we sometimes try to run away from as we become our ” best selves” – our successful selves , as our ego and others in the world see and define it.

    I speak from personal experience, having co-founded the Experiential Training company called Eagles Flight – and taking it as CEO from start up to 10 million in annual sales by the time I was 38. ( I’m 57 now! ) Like you, and every successful (and honest) entrepreneur, I’m very used to noticing my personal energy and attention ( or focus) slipping.

    Your stories of people taking advantage of you reminds me of the story in Les Misérables of the Bishop who not only forgave Jean Valjean for beating him and stealing his silver, but gave more. He said – “Now Don’t Forget, Don’t ever Forget, you’ve promised to become a new man. ( haven’t all good leaders made this promise to themselves and to those they lead? ) The Bishop knew he was part of a much greater picture, and his choice to forgive and bless might multiply in another’s heart. He was making another great leader who would go on to change others lives.
    It seems you share the same motivation.
    There will always be people who take advantage of this.

    Take good care of yourself Danny – and keep doing the great work which so many are grateful for!

    1. Thank you for this, Dave – there’s a great deal of insight borne of experience here, and I’m grateful to you for sharing it with me. I’m going to take some time to really ponder and let it sink in. In the meantime, I thank you.

  35. Danny,
    Congratulations on your second kid!
    That’s how out of touch we are 🙂
    I’ve been in a haze for 10 years so I feel ya.
    Don’t know if it’s realistic to expect to answer all your emails with two kids and a house on, but only you can solve that one.
    Just keep doing what you’re doing and don’t worry – kids grow up 🙂
    Cheers!

  36. Hi Danny
    I appreciate this.
    Of course we can become jaded after years of being full on and can also want to take a back seat for a while.
    But I agree with what you say.

    For example, the two coach a thon calls I managed to get onto were someone else, not you. Minor déception/ true disappointment.
    The energy of the launch didn’t continue in momentum in the course.
    Diane Holmes was the saving grace for me because she is there face to face and still enthusiastic.

    I am one of those who have given up for now.
    Was that missing magic you spoke about one if the reasons? Possibly.

    My estime for the company remains unjaded but I would have appreciated a trial period for the CBL course before investing so much just to realise it’s not for me (for now). That sticks in my throat a bit.

    But I still love the pertinence of all Marisee’s posts. The satisfying copy.
    Proof: I hardly read any emails these days and I read this one all the way through.
    An achievement!
    Your honesty serves you and warms us.
    I know this is what you’re really about.
    Best wishes
    Linet

    1. Linet, thank you for the kind words – and I’m sorry that you’ve stalled in your progress.

      Let’s reboot that energy for you, though. Are you in regular contact with your coach? And if not, may I connect you with a coach to support you?

      Are you attending our Office Hours calls? Many of our students find a great deal of continued momentum there.

      Let me know how we can help you, to get you back on track?

      1. (Also, just to be clear, we always advertised the coach-a-thons as alternating between myself and a member of the team. I’m sorry I wasn’t as available as you hoped I would be, but there was no deception there.) 🙂

  37. I’ve been hangin’ around since almost the beginning. Even guested once, here. Admired the beginning, stepped back during the sad middle, then felt drawn to pay closer attention again.
    How right you are; it is so easy to slip down, and hard to keep climbing upward. And to keep sight of the actual goal. Been there, myself.
    Keep it up. Don’t quit. 🙂

    1. Katharine, it’s so good to hear from you after such a long time – I hope things are good!

      And thank you for the kind words, and encouragement. I’m grateful, and look forward to seeing more of you!

  38. Thanks for sharing this, Danny! I’m a big believer in the “magic of connection”, to be sure. And this post just confirms the confidence I already had, that my connection with you, Mirasee and ACES, is SMART! Good for my business, and good for me personally. When I go through rough times, whether like yours in any way, or otherwise, I know my connection with Mirasee will help me through it. Thank you!

  39. Danny. So glad to hear from you again. Missed you, my friend. Anyone that has the power of self-reflection, has the power to re-invent themselves. Or find the better version of themselves. At any point in time. All is well.

  40. Hi Danny,
    I think you’re being too hard on yourself. My opinion about you hasn’t changed over the years. However, this open and honest soul-searching has validated my trust in you and Mirasee. All the best for the challenges ahead.

    (Ahem… Any chance of opening Audience Business Masterclass again to new students? I’m a little curious why you closed it down…)

    1. Thank you, Rohi, that means a lot.

      Regarding the Audience Business Masterclass, we closed it down because it was time for an update – of both the content, and the teaching methods. Our recent audience-related pilots (the Audience Launchpad, Audience Liftoff, and Audience Hacking) were all tests in the development of both.

      So stay tuned – there’s probably a new program in this “line” coming in the not too distant future. But next time we offer a training that has the word “audience” in the title, jump in!

  41. I think it’s all so true and I love that you are “saying this outloud” Danny.
    The truth is I mostly skim over the mirasee emails these days, which is not so much about you as about me (I have changed my direction and am more offline now, with more local mentors, though I still really value the what I learned from you back in the firepole marketing days) – but I clicked through today, because the post – or perhaps more to the point because the email – was from you, personally.

    The fact is, of course you can’t be replying personally to email from 100,000 subscribers – business size does change things. But what I am discovering on my own business journey is that that self-searching is actually a huge part of working for yourself and, I think, a true benefit. Sometimes it’s exhausting, but I never had to think so much about myself, my own motivations, beliefs, intentions, doubts, self-destructive behaviours etc, when I worked for “the man”. It’s good, I think.

    Also, I don’t think I ever congratulated you on the birth of your second child (I’m not sure I even knew about it!), so congratulations. Life is a series of moments, some of which last for years of sleep deprivation, and maybe business is like that too. You have to stop every so often, re-evaluate where you are at, and think about whether you can start getting some more sleep now, or you have to just keep going for a bit longer and check that box to come back to when you can.

    In my business we talk a lot about how we can do different things and expect different things of ourselves (and each other) in different life stages. I hope you are not too hard on yourself, accepting that sleep deprivation (and all the hands on work and exhaustion that comes with toddlers and young children) is a real disability in a way but a stage to get through (some of it with much joy), as is business growth and figuring out how to accommodate it without losing what you value.

    I have every faith you will figure it out and work out how to keep, or re-claim, the values that matter to you in business over time, even if there are setbacks and twists and roundabouts. Then if you can just share that with the world so all the other change-makers out there who go from small to medium to large and then lose their way, can emulate you, that would be ACE! No pressure or anything 😉

    1. Thank you so much, Kristen – it’s been too long!

      I’m thrilled to hear that you’re doing well, and really appreciate your taking the time to drop by and share these thoughts, which are very on point.

      Life is indeed a series of moments, and the onus is on us to make the best of them – and hopefully turn them into something that helps others do the same.

      Here’s to keeping on trying! 😉

  42. Danny, It doesn’t matter that you have fallen on your sword. What matters is this: What are you going to do to change it?
    I have paid for three courses and completed none. My first coach quit. My second coach quit, and my third coach never responded.
    Thankfully my project needed some time to mature but what can I expect from Mirasee?

    1. Hey Doug, I’m not sure that “falling on my sword” is what I’m doing here, so much as sharing my journey in case it is useful or resonant for others.

      I take the success of our students seriously, so I looked into your records with us. From what I can tell, you joined our Course Builder’s Laboratory, and worked briefly with Andy, who is still a coach with us. He’s mostly focused on our ACES students these days, but I have no record of you reaching out (if you did you would have been assigned another coach).

      You also joined our Audience Launchpad. There isn’t an individual coach provided as part of that program, and the people who supported you through it were there for the entire duration of the program.

      And finally, you’ve also joined Standout Guest Posting, which doesn’t involve any coaching.

      So what you can expect from Mirasee is what you can always expect from Mirasee; access to all the course contents and support that you signed up for, as long as you do your part of going through the material, doing the work, and reaching out to us so we can help you.

      Would you like me to reconnect you with my coaching team, so you can get back on track?

  43. Thank you Danny for sharing this very personal account of where you are at. I agree with so many of the others that said they were grateful for you being so real and reachable, and honest. These are the very specific reasons why I decided to join CBL in 2016. I was also reflecting on the survey you shared here, and I think that more businesses and entrepreneurs are coming forward with more authentic business models than ever before. I imagine this means that the bar is higher than it was 4 years ago, which may also reflect the different scores between now and then. Regardless, I look forward to reading more of your blog posts, and having more contact with your team if that is what happens going forward (I am happy too as things are right now btw). One other thing: I was a devoted student of an enlightened master for 16 years. One day she said to me ‘did you know that you don’t have to be perfect to become enlightened ?’ I’m pretty sure the same is true for business owners 🙂

    1. Very wise words, Sahaj – thank you!

      And yes – we’re here for you, and my team and I are happy to connect! Are you in close contact with your coach? Do you attend our Office Hours calls?

  44. Danny, I, too, have been through a sort of dark journey of the soul this past year, and I’m still on that journey, but it’s lightening up. And yes, I’m still with you. Thank you for not just keeping it real, but more importantly for keeping YOU real. That’s not an easy thing to do, or even simple. I hope to meet you in person some day, but until then, know that I consider you very much a mentor and a colleague, and I’m grateful for all you do.

  45. I’m going to leave this as a comment, but I’d also like to say it to your face: there is nothing cynical or jaded about you. You are the most methodical, thoughtful, patient person I know. The lens at which you look at the world is almost zen-like, and it’s appreciated by all who know you.

    The challenge you outline here is not uncommon for a business in growth mode. If you haven’t already read Predictable Success, I highly recommend it. You’ll see things in there that you’ve outlined here—and it’s not bad what you’re feeling. I would caution you, though, to make a rash judgment that you have to get back to personal connections. With 100,000 subscribers, that’s just impossible to do. Are there things you can go back to doing? Absolutely! You can definitely write more (I miss that from you) and you can give of yourself through contributed content again (you are the Freddy Kreuger of writing, after all).

    Think about the large companies of the world that have gone from start-up to entrepreneurial to growth mode to big business. Not a single one of them still does the things they did in the beginning. Sure, it’s hard to swallow and I think we all set out to change that—none of us wants our communities to feel abandoned. But, if you look at that graphic above differently, you’ll see people still trust you, still respect you, and still want to do business with you. This time, though, it’s as a large company, not as the Danny Iny/Freddy Krueger show.

    I know what your BHAG is…you’re on the right path, from an outside perspective. It’s really good you’re being introspective, but don’t do it at the expense of the strategy you’ve worked so hard to build these last couple of years.

    1. Hey Gini, thank you for this.

      And funny you mention Predictable Success, you’re the second person that I hugely respect to recommend that book to me in just a few days – so now it’s on my Kindle, near the top of the digital pile! 😉

      I appreciate the reality check. Maybe my expectations are unreasonable – but somehow, I feel like we could be doing better. Hmmm, maybe this is a conversation to have in person after all… over some drinks?

      What do you say – how about if we flip a coin and see who flies to visit who? 😉

  46. It’s great to get to know you even better through this post, Danny! Time is at a premium with a new baby in the house so that fact that I took the time to read through the whole thing tells you something positive about the compelling way you write. : ) Something that came up for me while reading this was the idea of the “confidence curve” that I heard about way back in the day when I was a member of BNI (Business Network International). Some businesses with products and services at relatively low price points, like florists or people who sold jewelry would sometimes start seeing referrals from the group pretty quickly. But for other professions, like financial planners, real estate agents, and insurance agents, it was very common to not receive a referral until they had been members for over a YEAR! The idea was that it took people a while to get to know someone well enough that they felt comfortable working with them and referring people to them. In my own experience, sometimes people are on my list for quite a while before they finally decide they’re ready to work with me. So this could have something to do with the difference in your numbers, too. Anyway, I’m with some of the other wonderful people who have commented here saying “don’t be to hard on yourself.” I was so impressed with your Course Builder’s Laboratory that I gave you an unsolicited glowing testimonial in our Conscious Leaders Facebook Group. I had to pause the program for maternity leave so don’t take it personally that I haven’t completed it yet. ; ) Cheering you on!

    1. Hey Penelope, we’re also corresponding about this via email, but I wanted to put a note here to say thank you, and congratulations again on the new addition to the family!

      Lots more for us to explore on this front, but let’s do it via email. 🙂

  47. I have been a follower for a while, at least 4 years. My response to your blog post is this: What I wonder Danny, is that what fueled you in the beginning of Firepole, and the shift to being Mirasee was right for then, and that something else may be right for you now. Jeffrey van Dyk has created a body of work around the wound, and how it relates to business. The wound/s are created when we are young, and they are vital – they help our personalities form. We spend approximately the first half or our lives living from this wound, running on the wound-drive, fueled by the wound. All very important, and how life ought to be. However, at some point in our lives, the wound reaches it’s expiry date. The fuel is no longer healthy, the wound-drive is sputtering. This may be what is beginning to happen for you. (And, it may not!). If this resonates with you check out Jeffrey. He is a master of this work, and how it relates to business. I have been through my own wound transformation, and I know how it feels on other side – free, and so so satisfied. Blessings on your journey.

    1. I agree with Gini, this is fascinating – thank you for sharing, Libby.

      I don’t think I understand it enough yet to know if it’s the right fit for where I’m at, but I will absolutely look into Jeffrey van Dyk’s work to learn more. Thank you!

  48. Good one man. I see myself in the early stages of where you were. And I hope to be mindful enough and limit the growth of my company enough that I don’t loose track of the important stuff.

  49. Hi Danny – thank you for your beautiful and courageous post. I am new to CBL and have followed you through the last year precisely because of your openness and authenticity and since I’ve started, I am even more impressed with how psychologically sound your program is. This post is another example of your awareness and understanding of what it means to be in the human struggle. It is so real. I see this as part of your heroes journey and I am honored that you have chosen to share that with me and your other students. You offer some inspiration to someone like me who is currently feeling a little overwhelmed with the breadth of this program (it does feel like a higher degree graduate level program – the breadth of which I wasn’t necessarily seeking!) and who has already encountered some dark days around my belief in whether or not I can do it all. The inspiration is that I am not alone in feeling doubts and deep internal struggle. I commend you for openly presenting yours and for the invitation to keep plowing through my own heroes journey. With gratitude…

    1. Thank you for the kind words, Cindi.

      And please know that we’re the ones feeling honored to be working with and supporting you in your journey.

      You mentioned doubts about whether or not you can do it all – I tell you with confidence that you can. We all feel doubts, but the real dividing line is between those who let the doubts stop them, and those who act in spite of the doubts.

      I know you can be the latter, and we’re here to help. Are you in close contact with your coach?

  50. I applaud and respect the honest introspection it took to arrive at this post. Wouldn’t it have been great to have had someone who’s been there and done that say, “Oh, by the way, at some point you’ll be so freakin busy running on your self-created hamster wheel that you’ll look up one day and wonder where YOU and the magic went?” And explain how not to go there?

    I think that, for as painful as that “I lost me and the magic along the way” realization is, the “how one got there” is just a result of expansion. It just happens. I think the difference with you is that 1) you see it, 2) you realize you don’t want to stay there, and 3) you’ll do something effective about it.

    Mirasee is big enough, with enough effective staff, I truly believe you can now take the next step and transition yourself from the day-to-day “inward” facing tasks, and actually return to your “roots” without losing anything you’ve created. It’s the next progression that I think gets lost for most companies as they grow, much to the dismay of the visionary who started it.

    So now, you become a real outward-facing CEO, as the ambassador for your company, with a (pre-screened) but open line to you from your clients and prospects. Your job, in my opinion, SHOULD be the visionary. Speaker, blogger, communicator, whatever is important to keeping you happy and in the connecting, visionary part of the game (including giving visionary direction to Mirasee).

    Your COO and team can keep things going, with your oversight. And you’ll have enough headspace and distance to see if something is going awry before it goes there completely. Like a consultant would for a business, you’d be that guy, and put that visionary hat back on that made it magic in the first place.

    Congratulations! You’ve rocked it to the best level of all.

    As for those who betray your trust… to the degree they are less than their best (and they do know it somewhere deep down), they are dismally unhappy, and “pay” much more than what they take from those who help them. And they never really “see” you. They betray… whoever’s there. Sad, really.

    The ill-mannered just need a grandma.

    1. Pam, I’m so grateful for this wisdom. Thank you.

      I think you’ve hit the nail on the head, and what you’re describing is a big part of where I hope we’re headed.

      As for knowing that those who betray my trust are worse off for it, and punish themselves… it’s one of those things that I know, but need the occasional reminder of – so thank you for that.

      With gratitude,

  51. I’ve never taken any of your courses but have been getting your newsletter since your biz was called Firepole Marketing.

    I go to a network here in TO called Happy Healthy Women. The groups kept small – 15 people. We go around the table and introduce ourselves and what we do. Many are not entrepreneurs. The organizer always gives a word that the group discusses. This morning’s word was sharing.

    People talked about what it meant to them, examples in their lives when it worked, why it works and what they do about others who don’t share. The most poignant comment had to with sharing failures rather than successes. We all agreed that what happened when you share a failure in person, on social media, in a blog post or youtube video is more people comment, respond or reply. It makes you personal. …. That’s what you’ve done in this post. Thanks 🙂

  52. I so appreciate your honesty, integrity and personal insights. Keep being true to yourself, Danny. It all feeds into why Mirasee is the success it is.

    Situations like what you’ve been through really hurt! And the more you care about people, the harder it is. But you’ve not let it compromise who you are, and for that your followers will be that much more loyal.

    Take care, and know that there are many who appreciate you.

  53. Danny
    Thanks for being so very deeply personal and raw. It’s a great reminder of what we all face and work through. It’s during those moments we reevaluate and refocus and being mindful its about each other…helping sharing loving growing with purpose and passion.

  54. Hi Danny… and thanks for sharing. I think we’ve all struggled with the same issues, to a greater or lesser degree, as we’ve grown (or attempted to grow) our businesses. You’ve very eloquently put into words thoughts that are shared by a lot of us. Given your honesty with yourself (and us) I’ve no doubt that you’ll re-focus and re-direct to steer the Mirasee ship back onto a course that’s more closely aligned with your vision, your values, your ‘why’. The current B-I-B course, where your involvement and influence are clearly felt is a return to those roots (maybe?) – and I think may be a step in the right direction and will help make the course correction easier.

    I appreciate your honesty, your integrity – it’s why I continue to be engaged with Mirasee (and Firepole before it) even though I’m only marginally involved in the on-line business world. Your insights are invaluable in ANY business, and I have and will continue to learn from you. Thanks again… and don’t be so hard on yourself, you’re clearly aware of the issue and willing to change – that in itself is huge!

    1. Hey Jeff, thank you for this. And yes, absolutely – this has been in the back of my mind for a while now, which is probably what prompted me to revive the Business Ignition Bootcamp, and other initiatives that are in the works. Thank you for noticing that, and helping me to notice it, too. 🙂

  55. Hi Danny…you are such a big-hearted person. I love that about you. You are still so down to earth. Thank God. I was wondering how the survey would turn out. This was a fascinating post and I thank you for writing it. I lived it vicariously. It made me realize how the early days of anything we do with passion are full of things to be wistful about. And how growth always brings challenges with higher stake consequences (homework, tests, rent, love, subscribers, marriage, dollars, logistics, employees, kids, customer satisfaction, etc). It’s a foggy trail we climb in life along a sometimes harrowing precipice. I’m glad you’re stopping to catch your breath. Look around. It’s different out there now. Live and learn is not just a flippant phrase.

    It could be the difference in the survey numbers between old and new subscribers is simply due to the increase in entrepreneurial online education options available now vs then and the combined daily noise of all those offers. It’s a much, MUCH noisier world now for your target audience. Growth in the industry has brought insanely high video production costs to launches that the majority in the audience can’t possibly muster. Subscribers are badgered at least once daily during launch sequences with don’t-miss-out urgency. Sales pages scroll forever listing so many bonuses you buckle under the weight of the implied work and the value/cost rationale. Energy is off the charts. What introvert wants to sign up to learn how to twist themselves into that pretzel?

    At Firepole, you talked to students. I haven’t experienced Mirasee, but I’m thinking you probably don’t start FB groups where the instructors promise to check in but rarely if ever do, leaving the students to wonder, guess and default into whaddya-think-of-my-stuff mode.

    Firepole succeeded because you did things differently and stayed involved. Maybe it’s not a 180 that Mirasee needs to turn, but consider new angles. The competition is high energy and relentless about pulling in 7 or 8 figures when I’m betting the majority of the audience would be ecstatic to pull in $75K!

    How quiet, low-key and realistic can you stay and still engage 100,000 people? I doubt they’re all in the high 6 figures wondering how to emulate the 7 or 8 figure folks. Can you split them into different audiences and show what success looks like at the 5 or 6 figure stages? You know…relate to them? Because that’s what you’re so good at.

    Best to you and the fam!

    1. Hey Michelle, it’s been a long time – thanks so much for dropping by!

      You raise some really good points – whatever else might be going on, the landscape has absolutely changed, in a lot of different ways – some of which leave people feeling inundated, and others that make it harder to relate.

      Good points, and important for me to keep in mind – thank you!

  56. No, Danny, what made Mirasee special started with you, who you are—the way you see education, the world, and that need you have to help others. Your inner strength, openness, & simplicity attracted us—both students and staff, I am sure.

    You are genuine. You led the way as a good leader does, and yes, you are just like everyone else: a human being with his own fears, his moments of doubt and cynicism. But what stands out about you is your honesty. Your incredible resilience makes me think that you must have regular conversations with that universal consciousness—that energy that connects us all—something greater than we are. So, in the end, your energy is what is what guides us and inspires us. We become a little like you.

  57. First of all, the Mum in me wants to give you a big old hug!

    I’ve been around since the days of Firepole Marketing too – a follower if not a paying customer. I’ve always appreciated your generosity with your knowledge, your insights, your sharing… and, as I’ve wandered off and on my own path, never noticed the changes in you and your amazing company.
    Having read this post twice, I am confident that Mirasee will continue to grow and be a heart-centered force in this online space and, subsequently, the entrepreneurial world.

    Thank you for opening your heart… and consider yourself hugged!!

  58. Thanks Danny. I feel that I have been through what you described, more than once, but more exaggerated. My high has not been as high as your high, but my low has been and is totally debilitating – to lying on the floor like a deadman bleeding on the carpet. Yet there is a tiny flicker of life inside. After 5 or 6 other courses attempted, I enrolled in CBL. Your story is helping me to continue to breathe. Am now trying to get back to my knees.

    You are a beautiful person of amazing strength. Thanks for being so REAL.

    1. Thank you so much, John, truly – that means a lot.

      And that’s wonderful to hear – I’m looking forward to seeing your success with CBL. Are you in close contact with your coach?

  59. I don’t know…I think you’re beating yourself up unnecessarily here, Danny.

    You’re still taking incredible risks, like the layout that went into putting on LIFT, and all the care you put into NOT cutting corners on that, even though you’d never done a live event before!

    The pressures of having a payroll to make cannot be denied, and you know I feel you there. They change how you do business. The bar just keeps getting higher, and you worry that if you plan an initiative and it fails, it won’t just be YOU not prospering, it will affect others on your staff. There’s a terror to that that nobody else can understand, who hasn’t grown a business big enough to have staff.

    Also, you also took the time to talk with me about my struggles at LIFT, even though you and your team had decided I was NOT a fit for the program the event revolved around. To me, your values and generosity are pretty well still in place. 😉 Also, the program you presented is an extremely robust support offering and seemed like a natural next step to what Mirasee can do in helping others in online biz.

    It sounds like some new things are coming as a result of this reflection — look forward to seeing them!

    1. Thank you, Carol. You’re very kind, and a good friend.

      You’re right, as things grow they also change, and the pressures are real. I’m cool with that. Just looking for a way of keeping the magic alive in the process.

      And yes, I think we sometimes do a good job of that, but we can probably do better.

      Most importantly, you’re right about something new coming. I don’t know what it will be yet, but deep reflections always seem to bear meaningful fruit. 🙂

      Thank you,

  60. I’ve always appreciated your openness in sharing your personal journey, as it merges and diverges with that of your business. This post does not seem as risky to me as it must have felt for you. Good on you!

  61. Hi Danny;

    Thank you for exposing your deepest thoughts about what you and your team are creating. Congratulations on taking the opportunity to raise your head above the day-to-day grind, for questioning where you are and where you are going.

    It sounds like you are remembering when you used to play at this creation, when it used to be fun, and wondering when play became work. It’s easy to do. I’m finding that I am not playing enough, even though we are just getting started. It’s one of the points we will be emphasizing in just the 2nd iteration of our course; Your Venture, Your Game.

    I’m sure you’ll find and rekindle that spark. Good luck.

    Now, get back to playing.

  62. Danny-

    As you’ve been so open and honest in this post – I feel compelled to send a note. I did not take the survey, have not been a student (yet) but have followed your journey from the days of FirePole.

    If we were having a beer, I would simply say ‘Cut yourself some slack’. You are going thru what a whole boatload of successful entreprenauers go through when they realize its not a little company any more. Unlike many, however, this is troubling you –that and the bars on the reco chart, of course.

    Having built 4 businesses (3 of them agencies) and working as a consultant now, I remember when my BIG agency had grown to 18 employees. We were very successful – offices in an A building South of Market in San Francisco – my own parking space (you’d have to know SF to know what a badge of honor that is!!!) –but my ex-partner and I went on a 1-day offsite to plot our growth –and how we could avoid any more employees!

    In California, ’25’ is the magic number where you go from being a ‘small’ business to a, I don’t know, ‘real’ business – and there are a host of tax and financial penalties involved. We did not want to get there! I had already gone from being what I thought was Creative Director of the agnecy to being a Project Manager – and my partner had gone from being head Sales Guy to being Head of Human Resources -it was not a good thing.

    Some un-related things brought us back to reality and the recession did the rest — we went to 10 staffers, 6 and then 2. I hated to screw up these peoples lives –they were counting on me and I failed to deliver –even when I knew the circumstances were far beyond my control. Eventually, I bailed out – and went back to doing what I loved — consulting, teaching and coaching smaller businesses and start-ups. Taking 30 years of industry knowledge and applying it for people who cared.

    So, go a little easier on yourself, you know what you need to do — write a killer blog, get up in front of a classroom of real human beings and just keep being the true leader –open and sincere –that got you into this pickle in the first place! And I’m ready to buy you that beer!!

    1. Thank you, Steven – clearly, you’ve been there and you exactly what this is all about.

      I’d love to have that beer and commiserate. Any chance you might make it out to Montreal in the near future? If so, I’m buying!

  63. Amazing, Danny. I’m a student from a while ago. I felt a connection then – during ABM and CBL. I felt like everyone at Mirasee believed in me… and I feel like I disappointed the team because I haven’t taken what I learned and run with it. Life situations were challenging, but the real challenge wasn’t external. It was all me.

    Fear of failure? Fear of success? Fear of being judged? Yes, probably all of those, topped with a full serving of self… -doubt? -loathing? Probably somewhere between the two. It doesn’t matter. And it probably doesn’t matter too much to the team that I quietly slipped away.

    What matters now is today, and how we can use it and our knowledge to shape a better tomorrow. Thanks for opening the door to that brighter possibility with this post. It’s good to be back.

    1. Hey Penny, thank you for your kind words!

      You haven’t disappointed us, if the path on and the place that you’re at on it is where you want to be.

      Is it?

      If it is, wonderful. And if not, remember the old proverb: “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago, and the second best time is today.”

      There’s no time like the present. Can I re-connect you with a coach to help you get going again?

  64. Danny,
    Introspection is a great thing and I am gad you are doing it. I was an early student of yours. I gave you $6,000 back in 2012 / 2013 for what I thought was going to quite a bit of support Firepole was quite small then. I know you had the best of intentions, but the program was not well prepared, especially for that kind of investment. A couple of times, I requested specific help, not a lot, but needed help and you rebuffed me completely. I had specific targeted things I was hoping to get that would have required 30 minutes of your time and three hours of your team’s time and you said no.
    My perception was you were just too busy building your company and I wasn’t important.
    Danny, I love your enthusiasm, I appreciate your vision and I deeply respect your knowledge, but I felt like I was taken to the cleaners by Firepole (Now Mirasee). Having subsequently now also worked with others like Jon Morrow and Jeff Walker who give so much value in their programs it just reinforced this negative perception I have of Mirasee.
    I wish you and the team the best of luck and understand that my experience was an exception, but it’s there and its real and I wanted you to know.

    1. Hey Paul, it’s great to hear from you, and thank you for the kind words!

      I remember our work together fondly, but I remember it playing out a little differently from what you describe; as I recall, we spent a great deal of time together planning, but your focus was mostly on the conferences that you were working to organize, and you slowly fell out of touch.

      I don’t remember any outreach that we didn’t respond to – if something fell through the cracks, I apologize. And I’m glad you’ve found help that you needed with other professionals.

      If you want to explore how things actually played out back then, I’m more than happy – same email it always was.

      Wishing you all the best,

  65. We are approaching the Fall Equinox—the time of reflection, re-examination, and release—a true “letting go” missive, very much in line with its time. Mimi Emmanuel suggests writing a “eulogy-to-be” of your own, sharing where you would like to be and what you would like to be remembered for—your unique contribution to living at life’s greatest transition—a very similar message to the one you have just shared with us. . .thank you for the on-point reminder that life is worth living, not only because of who you are, but who you will become, and the impact that you want to leave as your personal legacy to those who matter most . .

    1. In response to today’s email—this was my first impression when I read the article yesterday—and that impression is still is relevant. . .Thank you again for sharing such an uplifting and valuable perspective!!!

  66. Great to have YOU back, Danny. It takes courage to be so self-aware and honest just with yourself, nonetheless with your audience. Excited to see what changes this brings for the future. Wishing you the best.

  67. Dear Danny,
    Thank you. And I wanted to share something with you – call it synchronicity.
    I’ve had one of those moments yesterday, when I was really, really fed up with the world of marketing/business, because of the way it’s manipulative, even when coming from/through great people such as… (you can insert just about any name here).
    And then I remembered you. I haven’t followed you for more than a year (unsubscribed everyone else too, busy time), but I thought of you as one of the few exceptions that I actually experienced as transparent, in your marketing too, as someone that says what he’s up to. As someone that provides so much value that knowing where your marketing leads to is more attractive than any silly games and pretending it’s something else than what it is.
    And then, today, this post. I can’t imagine a better confirmation of my experience of you.
    Thank you again.

    1. Halina, thank you so much – it means a lot to me, and I’m glad for the reaffirming synchronicity!

      What are you busy with these days? What are you excited about? And how can we help? 🙂

      1. My pleasure, Danny!

        I’m busy building the foundation of my next work, one branch of it being Lightworker support (so coaching, mentoring, teaching). The other branch is building a global Network for Lightworkers (networking for global peace/joy).

        I’m not sure yet how you can help specifically – it’s too early for me to build an online course at this point. But I’ll stay in touch and see what may evolve.

        That said it is definitely helpful for me to be reminded that it is possible to stay transparent, generous, authentic and build a business, and that there’s more than one way of selling our services and products. That business can be, to use your beautiful tagline, be reimagined.
        Without it my tendency right now could be to just give up on that side of things.

        Thank you!

        All the best,
        Halina

  68. Reaching, Grabbing, Partaking. Actively Co Creating. Marvelling, acknowledging The Power Of Connection.

    As We Connect In Praise Of The One ☝️ Source Of All, We raise Our Vibration To Establish The Kingdom Of Heaven On Earth 🌏.
    Namaste 🙏

  69. So touching what you have shared here, Danny. I definitely feel the connection to you. I rarely read entire blog posts these days, but you kept me through the very end. Thank you for sharing your reflections and insights.

  70. Congratulations! It takes courage and personal power to be able to be so vulnerable. I can relate and have experienced many of the things you have shared. Thank you for digging deep, thank you for sharing. I look forward to working more with you in the future. Let’s work together to build a better world.

  71. Danny,
    You continue to be honest and refreshing. In an online world of hype and false hope, you deliver a dose of reality. Thank you for being an amazing teacher.

  72. Just the read I needed today – thanks Danny!

    As a student in your Business Ignition Bootcamp and someone who first heard about you when you were Firepole Marketing I can honestly say that you and your team has been an inspiring source of keeping up my dream and purpose. Even as I’ve often veered off the track and currently doing some serious soul searching as an entrepreneur. Very excellent of you to share your “soul searching”, not only to show the personal side of Mirasee (which is good!), but to encourage others that its just what an entrepreneur needs to do, even when business is going good.

  73. What a brave and honest post, Danny. I hope you reclaim your magic. Firepole Marketing helped me achieve my dream of being a published novelist, and growing my audience while doing so. I’m not where I want to be, but know I’m 100% on the right path. YOU helped me to create that, and I’ll always be grateful.

    1. Thank you, Marcy – I’m so glad to hear that, and happy for you, and proud of what you’ve achieved!

      As for not being where you want to be yet – what can we do to help? 🙂

  74. Danny, I’m also one of your older students who was there early on and remember “the good old days”, when you were just starting out.

    I also, like Matthew, *neglected* to fill out the survey, perhaps thinking that it wouldn’t really matter with the hordes of recipients, but in truth more because I stopped caring. So why is this the case? – as you so accurately point out, why is the magic gone?

    For my part, I thought you were a talented guy who was extremely transparent and authentic and your stuff was just what I needed and could relate to. I was a solid fan.

    But over time as you grew I could feel the withdrawal, as the staff grew and the so did the distance – the personal connection was not transferred to the new faces. And without that personal tie, as you noted, the connection and needed trust decidedly weakens.

    So I drifted and have recently found a new business development investment program that I am excited about and avidly perusing currently.

    But I keep a soft spot for Firepole/Mirasee and like to read your gems of wisdom occasionally. You are good at what you have done, building the business to what it is today is certainly a role model for any entrepreneur.

    I watch with interest and wish you the best in your redirection. It’s always good to reflect and honestly reassess. Of that you are a master.

    1. Thank you, Denise. I appreciate the kind words, and hope you find everything you need with the program that you’re pursuing.

      If there’s ever anything that I or we can do to support you, just reach out. And in the meantime, onward – from success to success!

  75. Hey Danny,
    I’ve only skimmed over, will need to read again with care
    What I get from the above is with much tender vulnerability is
    Your courage to be your authentic self
    By sharing in this way, you’re allowing your human self to connect with many others on the same level.
    You know when pain n trauma touches you so deep, another real part of you arises……diamonds are made of such pressure
    Through trials and tribulations as you walk the fire of challenge, you free up even more of who you are.
    Thanks for helping me touch my pain and reflecting within

  76. Hello Dany, thanks for the post. I receive your email almost all the time,and there is something to grasp when it shows up. About this post,it goes to show that experience is the greatest teacher of all time. And if you don’t break by the happenings you get strengthened and a better you emerges. One thing I can assure you is that every person has a weak side of life after all we are humans else nobody will need your assistance. But as you commit yourself to creating values and making it big,it will come but not without many challenges and difficulties as you affirmed earlier. Keep working at it and everything will soon become part of the success story. God bless.

  77. Danny,
    Thank you for writing this blog. It’s a reminder to us all. In the many years I’ve experienced you (Firepole Marketing to Mirasee) you have always been literally the BEST I’ve ever met at offering practical business skills built upon meaningful values, integrity, honesty, humility, generosity . . . It’s actually your notes of vulnerability, insight and inspiration that always most support the evolution of my work. Thank You!
    With continued respect and admiration,
    Kathy

  78. Thank you for this post – Your honesty and integrity is what attracted me several years ago and is still what draws me in.
    At the same time I would not underestimate having the right products. Having taken your course builder program I was impressed with the level of service and materials, and it was very good. At the same time it was overwhelming, and I have a strong platform and was able to get a lot farther than what I sensed others were. My guess is that few entrepreneurs out there are looking to create a course that is that involved, or maybe it’s my error in perception of what you are offering as I honestly haven’t been paying attention lately. One suggestion is to offer faster, more manageable approaches to training. More just-in-time kinds of things. I think this is the reality most of us work in. Videos on the fly, tapping into the 80/20 of what your clients need and creating something meaningful but doable. Turning eduction into everyday marketing, not just big courses. Maybe you have made this shift, and maybe this is not the right shift, but this is the direction my business is going and where my interests are now.
    Finally, my business has gone through a lot of cycles in 20 years. I find I can’t keep doing the same work and that it has to evolve with me. I guess the question is, Where is your developmental edge? What excites you?” It has to be real for you. You have to find that passion again which is hard with young children (Been there too) I’ve found sometimes when I lost my way it took time to figure it all out, and that sometimes the way emerged.
    Wishing you joy in the journey of finding what makes you come alive.

  79. Danny, this missive from your soul is what I needed to hear. I’m one of your students who purchased and has yet to begin your course and your courageous authenticity is inspiring me to begin now. Thank you, for shining a flashlight on the way forward again!

  80. I’m just started my journey with Mirasee this February and I have nothing but good things to say. Office Hours have been instrumental for me in reaching the goal of delivering my first pilot. At the same time, it is nice, to “feel” you and your presence this way. I suspect, and it sounds like you have realized, that your genius is better used at least PART of the time staying connected to what you loved from the beginning – staying connected to others.

    Not all principals are the bad guy. At my daughter’s school the principal is out every morning welcoming students and parents alike. It’s a small thing, but it makes a huge difference. When we feel jaded, it is likely that our hearts have strayed from what is most meaningful to us. (: And this is a beautiful reminder to all of us that without looking at the shadowy aspects, we can’t continue to grow – or at least not as well.

    As an additional note, people who have been with your longer have also had a longer time to build a relationship with you and the company. It doesn’t all have to be on you. We also make beautiful connections at office hours and with each other and this is lovely – but then again, maybe I don’t know what I have been missing!) 😉 In any case, I hope you find your passion again soon!

    And I LOVE this quote, ““If you have high expectations of people, you might often be disappointed. But sometimes they’ll surprise you and meet, or even exceed those expectations. That’s so much better than keeping your expectations low and having them met every time.”” I believe this whole heartedly – expect the best but don’t be too attached to it. Be well, and thanks for sharing so vulnerably Danny!

    1. Thank you so much for this, Tabitha – it really means a lot to me.

      That’s a really great point, that I have to remember – the principal doesn’t always have to be the bad guy. 🙂

      And you’re right – there’s a “trust cycle” in every industry, and part of it might just be a matter of giving people the time and space to get to know us – as well as the exposure to who we really are along the way.

      Thank you, Tabitha. And yes – let’s expect the best, but not be too attached to it. Wise words!

  81. How lucky is the Mirasee community to have a leader as honest and transparent as Danny Iny! Not to mention courageous and inspiring. You are an exceptional teacher Danny. Despite taking a different turn on your journey, the company has been faithful to the organization’s initial values. Those values , combined with your genuine and authentic demeanour, motivated me to become part of the Mirasee community and cancel all other membership sites. And I am a new student! The beauty of Mirasee is that you spend time reflecting on where you are at, where you want to go and what can you do differently. From my perspective, that is true wisdom. Having the courage to ask the tough questions and make the necessary changes is the mark of a true entrepreneur. What a wonderful lesson for us all and a terrific reminder of how essential it is to carve out time to reflect on our past, present and future and determine whether it is time to shift course. Thank you for being such a great example for the rest of us to follow.

    1. Hey Gillian, it’s been a long time – thank you so much for this note!

      I didn’t know that you were a new student of ours – congratulations, and welcome aboard! I’m thrilled that we’ll be able to support you on this new leg of your journey.

      So thank you for your kind words here, and onward – let’s do great things together!

  82. Danny, Thanks for sharing your journey, good and bad. It had me have a major revelation.

    I totally understand this dilemma. I had a software startup that grew to 22 employees before selling it. I loved the early days when I could still be in touch with everyone but after a while, I was mostly managing the business and that’s just not as personally satisfying to me. In our early days, a financial guy came in and told us we were doing well but that at some point I would want to bring in a “real CEO” after 10 years and 22 employees, I knew what he was talking about. We found one who could get things in shape for a sale and that was that.

    In my business now, I have made an effort to keep my team small, but it has started to creep up too. Gone are the days when I know how to do every little thing in my web design company. And now that I have my big course launch coming in 50 something days, I’ve added a Facebook Ads person, a social media person, and am so busy getting the course content completed that I have been out of touch with my community. I still do my weekly blog post, but I am phoning it in. And that is the real source of my worry about the launch. When I am plugged in and involved with the people that I serve, I am unstoppable. Thanks for having me see what I have to do.

    1. Hey Judi, I hear you, loud and clear.

      Something isn’t sitting right for me, though, in that I feel like there must be a way to thread this needle – to grow in the way that we want to grow, but also maintain the parts that made it worthwhile in the first place.

      Is that really too much to ask? 😉

  83. Thanks for sharing your struggles and please know that I am someone to whom you and Mirasee have made a difference. For the last several months, I have been going through one of the absolute worst times I’ve ever known. Pretty much everything in my life and my health began to unravel in a fairly excruciating manner just after I began CBL. Consequently, I’ve had to postpone my dreams while I struggle to get myself together. But simply knowing that I have CBL and the wonderful team at Mirasee waiting for me when I’m ready to jump back in has been a true blessing and, indeed, a lifeline. Your passion and commitment are evident in everything you do, and you wouldn’t be human if you didn’t falter at times. All enlightened souls go through times of darkness; it’s coming out the other side that produces the strongest light.

    1. Stephanie, I’m so sorry that the last few months have been so difficult.

      And yes, we absolutely are with you and in your corner, whenever you’re ready and for as long as you need.

      Is there anything that we can do in the meantime to support you?

  84. I admire you Danny for writing this article. You’re one of the few Internet writers whose work I read regularly. I bought a course from you and liked that I had a coach and how well organized it was. There was a FB group. Yet I didn’t feel connected. As good as the course was, I stopped doing it and drifted away. Maybe I wasn’t ready for the course. Two years later, I bought a more expensive course that taught me the same thing. They held events on Zoom etc. I finished the course. Felt much more connected to the group there. I could see them. I could talk to the instructor. As I finally set up my own courses I know I want to bring to people the intimacy and connection I crave online …. and yet if there’s too much, it won’t scale. So in my own small way I understand the dilemma you are experiencing. No answers here. But I agree with you it’s about having more connection. If not to you directly … then to the coaches etc. Oh, and I like rewards. Loved getting gold stars in that other program when I finished a segment. Maybe in the end we all just want what we wanted when we were in the first grade, including a teacher who talks to us personally.

    1. Thank you, Kelly. That really means a lot.

      And yes, it’s a difficult balance. We’re getting better at it every day, though – whereas I’m less personally connected than I used to be, we provide better support and connection through our coaches than we ever have, and I can confidently say that it’s better than anything I’ve seen out there, either.

      I don’t know where you are on your journey right now or what you need, but if we can support you, please reach out – we’re here, and in your corner. 🙂

  85. Hi Danny,
    I’m a recent customer and I chose to invest with you precisely because of your sincerity and integrity. I’m sensing there has been some shuffling behind the scenes, but I have every faith that you and your team will be there for me every step of my journey. I’m a little behind where I want to be at the moment due to some unplanned summer events I couldn’t have predicted, but I’m looking forward to getting and sharing great results with the Mirasee family, and I’m confident I’ll get there with you in my corner. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Sarah. And yes, we absolutely will be there for you. Have you shared your delays with your coach, so that they can support you in getting going again when the time is right?

  86. It appears you are right on track. If that track is that of the ethical entrepreneur.
    Someone once told my brother-in-law that he wanted to be in business, like him. My brother-in-law said “Here, let me save you some time. I will take you over in the corner, beat you up, and take all your money. There, you’re a business owner”. It’s only funny to those who have been through it. 🙂

  87. Hello Danny,
    Thank you for sharing your vulnerability as a business CEO. I’ve sustained my socially responsible business for over 40 years and recently published my third book, “Sheer Determination…Swimming Upstream in a Downstream World” by Keiko Kay Hirai. It’s not easy owning a business. My book shares all that I’ve gone through, what I learned and where I am now. When I was writing my book, it was so painful and I would say to myself, was I crazy to have done all this? I hope you will read this book…I’m sure that you will relate to my business building story. To me, the meaning of success is not that you win but you survive through it all.

  88. As always, great writing and great insights Danny. Always appreciate your honesty and transparency, even though I’m sure it’s uncomfortable to share.

    Keep doing what you’re doing and let’s see the Mirasee audience grow to 1+ million 😀

  89. Thank you for this personal touch of a post, Danny. It’s made me realize how far off track I’ve let myself get, and how much I’ve missed working with you and those you’ve so aptly guided.

  90. Thank you Danny.

    I GET it …

    I have learned that sometimes growth happens via consolidation (Think WINTER!)

    May I suggest considering applying some version of the 80/20 rule … Maybe downsiize …
    Get back to doing more of what you love and what lights your up … and maybe delegating
    operational stuff more to a senior person you trust.

    Blessings … DK

    PS: We never did do that podcast interview … I am still willing.

    1. Thank you, David – for the kind words, and the advice.

      I’m not interested in down-sizing – I still want to grow. But I want to find a way to do it that doesn’t sacrifice what made it worthwhile in the first place. That’s the real challenge.

      And yes, much of the operational work is already delegated, and more will be soon.

      As for the podcast – I’d love to do it, but now isn’t the right time. Can we revisit down the line?

  91. I’m thrilled to see you share this aspect of yourself again Danny, and I applaud your vulnerability. I’m one of your older students and you and the team have shown me nothing but generosity and professionalism full of empathy.
    I’m very happy to return the favour. I haven’t experienced the scale of what you describe but I can relate to looking up and realising I’d veered off the path I set out on.
    The good thing I’ve discovered at times like this is that now is the perfect opportunity to correct course and even find a more specific focus to the path that is right for you and the company.
    I realise that publishing this post may have felt risky. But perhaps the readers that persisted reading to the end are the ones you most want to work with.
    Thanks for being our teacher and leading with such integrity.
    Send me the survey again. This one post would significant affect the response I give you this time.

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