I have a story to start off with. There was this one time some buddies and I had the bright idea to go sky diving, And so we'd just been sittin' around and decided to head up to the sky dive place, and kinda took some lessons on a Saturday afternoon. figured out what we had to do, kind of told us the ins and outs of sky diving, and before we knew it we were suited up and ready to climb on board this plane. And I was like pumped. This had been something I had wanted to do for a very long time. And so I'm first on the plane, gettin' in there, And then all my buddies pile in and we get up to altitude, and of course I didn't think about it, but if you're the first one on you're the last one off. So I had to watch all my buddies jump off, and in various states of fear, you know. They go up there and like you can see where someone just tenses up and doesn't want to go and when you first jump you're going tandem with another jumper, instructor, and so the instructor had to give him a little n...
udge and they tumble out. And I, you know, I kept talking to myself saying, "I'm going to do this. I'm going to do this. I'm going to get up there. That's what I came here to do. I'm going to jump right out. It's going to be awesome." I get up to the door, and so you know, you're looking out like 10,000 plus feet and it's like holy crap. (audience laughter) And so my whole body just froze. And I'm tensed up and like, "Oh God!" And the instructor gave me that little nudge And we'd go tumbling out, and it was amazing. It was an incredible experience. Um, trying to absorb everything that's happening, The rushing of the wind and the sights, and the feeling of everything. And also checking the altimeter to check if I need to pull the cord or not. And uh, before I know it's time to pull the cord, and I reach back and I pull the rip cord, and my canopy goes up and feet jerk out from beneath me. And we're floating there for a second, and I'd gotten to know the instructor pretty well, and we start kinda spinning, and I'm thinking, ah, he's trying to like make me scared of what's happening and just kinda give me a fun ride, and all of a sudden we were spinning faster and faster, and before I know it I can't feel my feet we're spinning so fast. We're just tumbling out of control. And I'm trying to think. What's going on? What do I need to do? And so I'm thinking back to the lessons I took earlier that day. And they said, as you're, as when the shoot opens the instructor has you hooked four different places to the instructor, and they unhook you from two of those places to make it a smoother ride. And I was like, maybe he hasn't unhooked me. Maybe he's trying to unhook me. And all of a sudden I can feel him jerking around and doing something, and all of a sudden I'm loose from the canopy and I'm falling, and I'm screaming and I'm passing everybody else. And this is real life. I'm passing everybody else that jumped out minutes before. And the ground's coming up, and it's coming faster and faster, and all a sudden I feel the other canopy open up and it kicks out. And the instructor had still been attached to me. I just couldn't feel him because of the, my frightening experience. (Audience laughter) And so we're going to crash land in this field. He's like screaming, "Roll the left! Roll the left!" And uh, I had been, probably a sign, earlier that day I'd been playing with my friends, and broken my left foot, and so I said, "No! Go to the right! Go to the right!" And so we crashed into this field, rolled to the right, and he's laying there shaking, and the canopy's collapsing around us, and he said, "I have jumped out of a plane 10,000 times, and that's never happened before to me. So the moral of the story is that there are a lot of frightening things that can happen to you in life. In-person sales should not be one of them. (uproarious laughter) so, often and artist's biggest fear is rejection, and we do whatever it takes to avoid that fear. We will price our work for little or nothing. We post our work online galleries, in the hopes that our client will purchase something. That's kinda the classic case of the starving artist. I too was like that at some point. When I first started, I was trying to cram in as many sessions as I possibly could. I was offering my work for little or nothing. I'm from a small farming community in Wilton, Iowa. We don't even have a stop light in town. Who's going to pay more than $2 a 4x6, right? I was posting my stuff online galleries to avoid the fear of sales and having to confront client. And eventually I was running into enough problem clients, and getting frustrated enough, that I realized that I did value my time, and my energy, and my skills more than I was afraid of rejection. So I need to become a better salesman. Zig Ziglar said, "Timid salesmen have skinny kids." (soft laughter) And there is supposed to be a picture of my kid up there, that's not coming up, and he's really scrawny and as a funny picture, he came up. Timid salesman have skinny kids. In order to be a good salesman, you need to have the right mindset going into a sale. You need to realize that you are worth it and you deserve to be compensated for your time. You also need to realize the stuff you are creating is most likely going to be the most valuable material items that a person owns. Think about it. What are they saving in, say a fire? Their family. They're going to save their pets. And then they're going to save their family pictures, right? Other things, you have to realize you are not your own client, meaning that if you came to yourself as a client you'd most likely be a terrible client for yourself. You have to stop projecting your own financial limitations and values onto your clients. And lastly, be unapologetic and be confident in your sales.