Milana Leshinsky is creating a simplicity revolution for coaches, authors, speakers and entrepreneurs who want to grow their businesses with ease.
Creator of Recurring Revenue Revolution, author of Coaching Millions, co-founder of JV Insider Circle, and an inventor of telesummits, Milana is known as a serial entrepreneur and paradigm shifter by many luminaries.
She came from Soviet Ukraine 25 years ago as a classical musician with zero knowledge of the business world, and has built multiple six and seven-figure businesses since.
Today sheʼs passionate about showing entrepreneurs how to use simplicity as a growth strategy and say goodbye complexity and overwhelm.
What we talked about
- What happened when she reached 1 million dollars and what didn’t
- The story of how she got her piano when she came to the US and why it always reminds her of gratitude
- How she felt underappreciated for her work and the importance appreciation has on our overall wellbeing
- Overwhelm, anxiety and panic attacks, trying to do things at the speed of light, instead of the speed of LIFE
- How she got to appreciate the little things, like the trees on her street when taking a walk, after selling her part of the business
Her favorite Gratitude Quote
“The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated.” – William James @MilanaLeshinsky
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- Milana Leshinsky’s website: http://www.simplicitycircle.com
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Hi gratitude seeker welcome to a newepisode of the gratitude podcast today Iwill introduce to you a former personthat has been really close to Romaniathat we were actually neighbors in a waybecause she is from Soviet Ukraine shehas come to the States 25 years ago as aclassical musician with zero knowledgeof the business world and has builtmultiple six and seven-figure businessincomes and I think that isextraordinary and I will let her tellyou more about what she is doing rightnow and what her story is and howgratitude has helped her to to get thisamazing resultshi Georgia thank you so much on yourshow I’m excited my gratitude today Iguess when I introduce myself I usuallylike to say whether it’s in writing orwhen I talk to people I’ll say somethinglike you know I am a business owner whocreated a million dollar business fromscratch without any previousentrepreneurial experience because Icome from the former Soviet Union whereentrepreneurship just didn’t exist Ididn’t hear the word business until Icame to the Statesand I was a music teacher classicallytrained which even tells you that waslike literally I didn’t even see acomputer until I came to the StatesWow so yeah I mean the life that I wasthrown into as a result of myimmigrating to America to be over veryquickly I had to learn the language Ihad tohow to use a computer and had to learn awhole new culture and way of life and soI have a lot to be grateful for so I’mexcited to talk to you today and I’mcurrently running I just started a newbusiness after I say that I’m a newbiewith 16 years of business a new businessit’s called a simplicity circle we cantalk about you know why I needed thatway and what simplicity entrepreneurshipis all about but that’s amazing that’samazing I know we have some experiencesthat are very similar not just the factthat we we were neighbors at one pointbut also in business that theexperiences that we both had and it’svery interesting that you got tosimplicity and I’m really curious whatwas that simplicity in business for youyou said something before we got on onlive the fact that it’s it’s importantto have balance in in business and andI’m really curious if you can expand onthat a little bit yeah you know so Irecently started a Facebook group forsimplicity entrepreneurs and when beforethey join before I accept them as amember they have to answer a questionwhat does simplicity mean to you and asI’m reading all these answers I havelike 800 people in the group right nowand so I have a lot of answers andeverybody sees simplicity different whenI first announced I’m starting a companycalled simplicity circle some peopleassumed that I was getting rid of all ofmy possessions like minimalism kind ofsimplicity which is not true at allbecause if you look at my background Ido love you know having my beautifulpiano in my office and I always wantedto live in the library and in a museummy mom is laughing because I have everywall covered with so no not getting ridof any of your possessions what I amgetting rid of is the things the mindsetand the people and the resourcesthat no longer served my purpose how Icame to find simplicity mindset inbusiness specifically is I hit a milliondollars two years ago for the first timeand what surprised me the most is that Iwas really looking to build a milliondollars because thinking it’s like amillion dollars right it is like a it’sthe holy grail of all online marketingall online businesses yeah when I hit amillion dollars I didn’t even realizethat because I was too busy workingit wasn’t until my bookkeeper told mefour months later when she was doing mytaxes yeah you hit one point four Wow Iwas like what and I didn’t evencelebrate it and it doesn’t mean evenfeel the way I imagined that would feelyou know when you hear the word milliondollar entrepreneur you think hallelujahand I didn’t feel big I didn’t feel anymore significant and most important Ididn’t feel any happier mm-hmmin fact I told my husband you know whenI hit six figures a hundred thousanddollars I remember that moment thatmoment I was on cloud nine it wasexcitingright because it was like it was a bigmilestone and I and my business wasstill very simple so after I hit amillion dollars and didn’t realize itand it didn’t make me feel any happierI started looking elsewhere and maybeit’s a little too too much informationtoo early on but what was no problemmm-hmm and so even though I didn’t knowthat this was the wrong kind of businessfor me the wrong kind of pace for me mybody knew and so I ended up selling myhalf of the business to my businesspartner and walking awayand started this new company calledsimplicity circle where the the focus ison simplicity entrepreneurship whichmeans that yes you can grow and scaleyour business while keeping yourindependence peace of mindfreedom health relationships so you canscale up while keeping your independenceand Dad is what simplicityentrepreneurship is all about andapparently I wasn’t the only one when Iquit when I sold my business last year Istarted talking to other people who onthe surface on the outside of verysuccessful but when I had privateconversations with them I learned thatthey were on the brink of burnout theycreated monsters they had big teams lotsof systems lots of responsibilities thatcost a lot of money he had to producemoney to cover their expenses and sowhen I sold my business last year Isigned the exit agreement on my birthdaywell what happened was I remember likethinking I got nothing to do I haveknown to-do lists no deadlines noresponsibilities no projects no plans nobrands no product launches coming upnothing I got nothing and that botheredme myself it’s like I’ve jumped off afast-moving train today I love yourstory and thank you so much for forbeing so honest and open about it I I’vehad the same kind of experience at amuch lower scale and it it convinced meto to look elsewhere for happiness notin achieving these kind of goals becausewe the way we see them at other peoplethat we we look up to and wethat if they are $1,000,000 if they havea million dollar business that meansthat their life is perfect becauseeveryone wants a million dollar businessright well in in my experience andknowing other people that have been inthat situation that’s not true and ifthey’re if they don’t have if they’renot able to enjoy and to appreciateeverything that’s happening in theirlife and all the the blessings that theyenjoy it’s it’s not that much of a valueactually for us as human beings if wecan’t appreciate and we can’t enjoy whatwhat we have and for me that that’s whyon the one side that’s why I’m doingthis work on gratitude because as I wasthinking in the future if I would get tothat point if I wouldn’t be appreciatingwhat I’m learning and what I’ve built Idon’t think that would mean anything forme and if I wouldn’t be doing somethingthat’s less meaningful and I think thatthis has been somehow your experience iswell and you you shift from like likethe documentary I don’t know if you knowabout the documentary from ambition -meaning for yeah it’s it’s really goodand in it there is this shift fromreaching a certain goal that it’susually numerical and doesn’t have abigger purpose to it to actually havingmeaning and to actually having feelingthat you you are doing something amazingwith with your life and that being thatthe main the main goal and the maindriving force but getting back togratitude so can you tell us what hewhat gratitude is for you what does itmean for yougratitude is remembering it’sremembering the things that you do haveversus trying to chase the things thatyou might have I’m always grateful forto have a piano in my officeya know comes with a very interestingstory behind me when I came to America Ithought I was going to be continuing mymusic education and so a newspaper alocal newspaper in Syracuse New Yorkinterviewed me and when the reporterfound out that I didn’t have a pianoshe titled the article a piano teachercontinues to play without piano mm-hmmand then in a little corner it said likepiano donation wanted it and so abusinessman called up a newspaper andsaid I have a piano to donate to thisyoung lady I was nineteen years old Wowand that piano God donated 25 years agoand I don’t know how old it was before Igot it but it’s in great shape I keep itmaintained and my kids well my son Ishould say my daughter I didn’t get toomuch of attached to it but my son playsreally well his hands are bigger so heplays harder pieces so to me it’s verymeaningful and so this panel will diewith me it will be here that it’ll go tomy it’ll be in my family’s I’m gratefulfor it every day and so when I havetrouble in my heart in my soul in mymind I always go and play and forwhatever reason when I play I don’tthink about anything else about whateverI play like my mind just so it’s veryhelpful that’s kind of like I guess it’smeditative a little bit mm-hmm and italso takes me back to my life in Kievyeah where I didn’t know anything aboutbusiness Internet million dollars I wasjustto be a musician I put all of me inmusic I breathe slept ate music that’sitlife was so simple but I do want to tellyou that I do believe you can have amillion dollar business and even a monththat is simplethat is really what simplicity is allabout because what’s simple to you iscomplex to me and vice versa hmm so yourgoal is to find what is what feelssimple to you it’s only complex when wedon’t understand it so for example whatwhen we don’t understand it or when it’snot in our natural abilities right hmmso if you optimize your business aroundyour super skills your natural abilitieswhere results come with ease whywouldn’t you have a million dollarbusiness so earlier on I did have a halfa million dollar business working fourhours a day while raising two childrenno problemI’m so sorry trying to uh to turn offthe dog is a lot harder than thanturning everything else off yeah okay soyeah and so that business was simple andI was still generating half a milliondollars it was only when I startedworking with other people and as thepeople pleaser I wanted to please mybusiness partner my team my clients mycommunity my market and before I knew itI leaned away from my natural abilitiesand I did things that my business neededme to do mm-hmm so you can have amillion dollar business as long as youjust stay in what did I call yoursimplicity zone mm-hmm yeah I love thatI love it I love how simple you you makeit like like it’s not some some theoryit’s really you really leave this thisis this is what what I feel when whenyou when you’re speaking the fact thatit’s really possible and it’s really notsuch a big deal actually to to be livingthis to be to be experiencing thisrandom I was I was very curious to toknow if you have some words of wisdom ongratitude favorite quote or somethinglike this so I actually by William Jamesthe deepest craving of human nature isthe need to be appreciated mm-hmm thereason I love this quote is because forthe last couple of years of me being inmy business previously I felt sounderappreciated and I was rackingracking my brain trying to figure outwhere did I get appreciation before thatbusiness was it from my clients mycustomers my coach my family becauseeverybody needs to be appreciated mm-hmmbut for some people it’s more importantthan for others and I never knew thatactually that some people can do thingsand function in life because somethinginternally fulfills them but otherpeople do need external appreciation inaddition internal appreciation almostlike validation yes what you do whatyou’re doing matters that’s whatappreciation is all about I want to knowthat what I’m doing matters and if Idon’t feel appreciatedthen suddenly I feel like I’m making noimpact on this world I don’t knowexactly my ideas my hard work myinsights my creating creations that Iyou know figure out how to do certainthings they don’t matterso it’s through appreciation that’s howI know that I matter and a lot of peopleI think can relate to thatso if appreciation is important to you Iwould say put yourself in theenvironment where you are appreciated beaware of thatso this is what I always tell my myaudience that we need appreciation weneed to feel appreciation in order forus to feel that we have meaning in thework that we are doing and also it’svery important for us being conscious ofof this need also offer it and to giveit to other people that actually need ita lot and it might be you might be theonly person that is actually givingappreciation to that person and youmight make his day or his week or hisentire month because you are the onlyone who is actually expressing theappreciation so I really love the quoteand I’m glad that you that you chose itbut I’m really curious what you do whenit’s hard to be grateful when thingsaren’t going your way and when gratitudeisn’t the first thing that that’s onyour mind I think well I mentioned thatI like to play piano and I also like tofocus on if something is happening thatI just can’t control and life is toughthe kind of things that I focus on islike well I’m looking outside the windowand it’s beautiful and I just go out andwalk and do a mindful walk I actuallydiscovered meditation as a result ofhaving panic attacks I discovered thatthis is one way is to meditate yeah tofind peace outside of my currentenvironment because when you’re workingreally hard and your mind is always busyanxiety can creep in for some people andI think that’s what happened with me isthat my mind was always anxious becauseI would always have deadlines and Iwould jump from one project to the nextand just when wethere’s one launch the next launch iscoming right up and I need to shoot newvideos and the event coming up and Ineed to work with joint venture partnersoh and by the way another JD partnerwants me to promote that and thisconstant ticker in the back of my mindof anxious thinking that is what youknow sometimes causes anxiety andEvangel accounting attacks and so what Ineeded to do was to walk away from thereand focus on something that is not asstressful and something that is a littlebit more peaceful and one of the thingsmy coach actually taught me is slow downbecause when we especially for highachievers what happens is we pushourselves and we work at a pace that islike we’re trying to accomplish goals atthe speed of light yes so what she wassaying to me is try to slow down andaccomplish things and do things at thespeed of life wow it’s so beautiful thatis very different right speed of lifeversus speed of light so I timed that II’m stressed and I’m angry at somebodyor something I remind myself to slowdown and to focus on life and just tochange my pace to speed up life that’sso beautifulhaha this is this is actually a reallygood quote as well to do things at thespeed of life and also I believe thatnature helps helps us see the rhythm thenatural rhythms of how nature works andthe fact that a tree doesn’t I don’tknow it doesn’t try really hard to togrow really fast because it has its ownpace and yeah exactly and it takesenough time for it to to be strong tohave good roots and to be able to togrow into a big tree but it it takesintoconsideration much more than justgrowing like really really fast and nottaking into consideration the fact thatit needs roots that it needs to put justa little bit of shit in every day it’sfunny that you mentioned trees becausewhen I walked away from my business lastyear and I went outside for a walk and Ifor the first time in years startednoticing these amazing trees on thestreet next to mine and I was startingto think and get curious how old arethese trees and all of this has grownand you know people before me probablysaw this she planted like all theseideas and thoughts came into my mindthat I never had before I never evennoticed so you know I have a littlething that I do is like when was thelast time you noticed the nature outsideyour window or the trees or any anyanything that is like created by natureand I’m not a very spiritual personactually people who have known me beforeyou know last year they would be shockedthat I may be talking about this becauseI I just don’t talk about things thatare not tangible that you can’t touch orsee or experience right so talking abouttrees feels a little weird for me rightnow what if I tell you that noticing atree after I sold my million dollarbusiness or half of it that was the bestand most unique experience that I’llremember because I didn’t notice treesand I thought I’m in my 40s and I’ve gotto notice things that are beautiful inlife and you know when when we die notif it matters what Madison is like whatyou what you gave your family will letyou how you impacted other people butnone of it matters if you were miserableI’m getting too philosophical on you soI’m gonna move on oh no problem noproblem I love this I love this and it’svery true because I always ask myselfthis question what what actually mattersin life and what are the things that wewe take with us and the really long termvision of life because if I would thinkreally short term or if people ingeneral would think just short term theywould think about survival they wouldthink about I don’t know maybe making alot of money and they might not thinkabout the impact that they have whenthey do something I don’t know maybethey think that getting a lot of moneyreally fast can can be done by sellingdrugs or selling and then on guns andyou can do that but it’s only a shortterm term view because you you don’t seewhat happens when you when you’re doingthat the fact the fact that you’re notdoing something positive with yourselfwith your life and also you’re not doingsomething positive for other people aswell so I think thinking about thereally long term view is really helpfulto be able to understand what’s best foryou to do right now and for the next thenext years to come maybe that could takedecades earn or so discovered businesslast year was uncertainty and I’vealways been certain in my future futureincome I am a planner I would have likea two-year plan of how I’m gonnagenerate this much money I’m going tobuild my audience all these things thatyou do as you grow your business rightand suddenly I had this massiveuncertainty and I felt like oh this iswhat my clients experience when theydon’t have income when they don’t have agreat businessor when they don’t have a subscriberlist mm-hmm and you know if I were to goback in time and kind of talk to myselfand think that’s one of the things thatI tell my kids there there are twothings that are still true so that’swhat I what I would suggest you ask iswhat do you have clarity on what do youhave certainty around and for me it’stwo things and I think that that issomething that worth writing down if youwant to be successful on your terms youwant to focus on mastering a skill thatis valuable to others mm-hmmI’ve always told that to my children Ihave a 22 year old son which is hard tobelieve because I still feel like I’m inmy twenties people confuse us for mebeing his older sister that’s amazingyes I find it really fun but that’s theone thing that I’ve always told my sonis master one skill that is valuable toothers if you can bring value to otherpeople you will never be poor hmm so Ihave really strong clarity on that andI’m grateful for mastering severalskills in my business like marketinglike communication you know there’scertain things that I feel like I’mmastered and if I don’t mean thatAustria isn’t perfection I mean it’salways gonna be work in progress but itimproves every time you do it right andI’m grateful for my son to mastercommunication he’s a masterfulcommunicator even though he works as anelectrical engineer his primary skillsis communication that’s how he gets hegets on in life and then the other thingthat I have absolute certainty andclarity around is thatyou can build a very successful businessas long as you optimize it around yourbiggest goals and skills that’s wrongyeah because anybody thinks well I’llhave to make a certain amount of moneyand people up to my business for amillion dollars or for six figures andthey just keep their eye on the goal ofspecific income mm-hmmwhat happens if that’s what they do isthey’re willing to do anything theywilling to push force grind do 24 hourmarathons on their computerthey’re willing to take any advice andtry any system or strategy as long as itpromises that they’ll make a milliondollars right make six figures andthat’s how we get in trouble but if youoptimize your business for independencefor financial stability for cashtonaround your natural abilities and yournatural skills then your main drivingforce as you said that I really likethose words you mean driving forcebecomes that goal yeah you makedecisions a place of power as opposed tofear exactly exactly and also you cangive time to and for gratitude like ifyou if you only think about the factthat you’re going to be happy as long asyou make that money I in my experienceat least it wasn’t the case but when youalso appreciate the journey youappreciate yourself for the qualitiesthat you have and you apply them whenyou appreciate your clients and youcreatebusiness around appreciation andgratitude as well you will get much moremeaning and much more happiness out ofit than rather than just creating it forfor the sake of profit but I’m reallycurious if you if you have some peoplein your life that you that you are verygrateful for and that you would like tomention for sure well I you know I mymom probably my biggest inspirationwhether I realized that early on or notbut she came to America when she was 39and you know it’s the time when youdon’t really learn a link in yourlanguage it’s the time when you settledown and you know you get comfortable inyour life right it’s not the time whenyou go to another country learn alanguage and learn a profession and soshe learned a new language she got adick on education as the computerprogrammer and she’s in person now andshe still works as a computer programmershe’s very valuable to look oh my godright so not everybody can do that andso she’s my I’m grateful to have her inmy life because when I asked her isn’tthis hard like you didn’t don’t you wantto retire she says yeah I probably dobut I love this I love it so it’s notbig she’s not doing it because it makesher money although it does she doesn’tdo it because she had no other choicebut she does it because she absolutelyloves computer programming she lovessolving those puzzles so machine thatwas somebody I’m grateful for yeah Iwould say that I’m also grateful to myprofessors in music college because theypushed me and they believed in me andeven though I don’t do musicprofessionally right now what I learnedwas discipline and I learned I learnedthat hard work pays off and Isay that with a bit of with an asterisknext to it because yes I worked hard butI worked in the right directionsometimes people will think oh I need towork hard because hard work pays off ifyou really want it you can work hard andyou’ll get your to your goals and yesyou can or you can burn out in the wrongdirection it doesn’t matter how hard youwork if you are pushing and it pushesback maybe that’s not the thing that youshould be working towards well that’snot the strategy or activity that youshould be focusing on yeah so I thinkthat my music professors pushed me inthe right direction yeah this iswonderful advice I truly I truly believethat once we do this life makes muchmore sense yeah and and maybe the lastperson I will say I’m very grateful tomy business coach I had two businesscoaches over the last 12 months when myfirst coach heard me talk about someblizzardy she said Lana don’t do itpeople will be confused and even if shewanted me to do something else somethinga bit more tangible and I just felt likeyou know what I’ve done that I’ve beenthere I’m exhausted and I’m bored I needsomething differenteverybody is marketing something thesedays everybody’s trying to tell you howto grow a million dollar business or howto grow a six-figure business I don’tconnect with that idea anymore I needsomething fresh something innovative andsomething that reflects or somethingthat responds to the evolution that hashappened in the marketplace because weget emails every day hundreds of emailsif you’re very active online you can gethundreds of emails a day telling you howto grow a successful business yes andhere’s the fastest and easiest wayto grow a business right and you don’tknow who to believe and you leave theseemails and you get confused and so mycoach did not understand simplicity andI let her go because I felt like shecould not be my supporter on my journeythe second coach who coincidentally wasone of my earlier coaches remembered youknow mallanna if you remember when weprofiled youwe called you a demystified and anotherword for demystifying is simplifying sosimplicity is so well aligned with whatI’m doing right now but she got it and Ideveloped this concept and idea andright now what I’m seeing it’s amovement people don’t want to build bigcomplex businesses we are watchingothers you know like you need a team ofpeople you need all these funnels and abunch of websites and a social mediasystem and this and that and the way Istick now is like no you don’t unless itfeeds into your natural abilities youdon’t need to do any of it so be carefulor when somebody tells you you should dothis or you should do that it’s thefastest and easiest way to do somethingit’s the fastest and easiest way forthem yes for you right so I’m gratefulto my business coach that I’m currentlystill in touch with that you know whosaw and believed and this simplicityentrepreneurship movement because it isgrowing people are tired of complexitypeople want more simplicity in theirbusiness and they want to make money butthey don’t want to sacrifice people tobe grateful for and by the way we’reworking our audience find you work inour audience your work yeah so ifif you want to build your business inthe simplicity way I have a page thatyou can get started with its simplicitycircle calm forward slash get startedvery easy very straightforward it’ll getyou into that community it’ll give youthe tools and information how to moveforward with this idea and how to buildyour business in a way that allows youto scale and to grow but in a way thatis optimized for your personality foryour unique business personality yeahexactly I love it so thank you so muchfor being here with us and for sharingyour your life story and your experiencethank you so much for for being here tobe inspired perfect perfect thank you somuch[Music][Music]