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5 Deepest Learnings from my Biggest Launch Ever

I am still riding high from my Big Shift Experience live event.  It was a truly remarkable experience for me, for my team and for everyone there.  There was so much there to experience, to learn and to soak in.

So before I forget everything I learned from being able to gather 450 glowing entrepreneurial change-makers all in one room, I am going to share with you 5 of my deepest learning from the biggest and arguably the best thing I have ever done.

1. There is no such thing as an overnight sensation: Small, Medium, Large

Small Medium Large BBC

The first live and in-person workshop I ever held had a whopping total of 3 people in my living room.  It then took me 3 years before I was able to gather 60 people for my first Big Shift Experience.  Now 4 years later, I had 450 people in the room.  There is no such thing as an overnight sensation.  I first had small numbers for my live event.   Then I graduated to medium numbers.   And only now do I have enough knowledge, enough experience and enough reach to be able to produce big numbers.

2. The Most Impactful Thing to Say is the Hardest To Say

Hug Shield

Over the years I have gotten comfortable being vulnerable and authentic.  This year at the Big Shift Experience, I wanted to go deeper and talk about things that were still raw for me and were not easy to share.  Not only did those shares produce Big Shifts for me, but being raw and emotional opened people up to create their own Big Shifts beyond what I could have possibly expected.  I realized that depth is infinite.  I can ALWAYS go deeper in my understanding of my craft.  I can ALWAYS go deeper in my vulnerability.   I can ALWAYS go deeper in the full embodiment of who I really am.  And that’s what becomes the catalyst for others to do the same.

3. What Was Once Protection is Now Prevention

Bill ShieldIn order for most of us to make it through our childhood and teenage years we needed to put up shields in order to protect ourselves from the pain and suffering of being criticized, of being rejected or of being bullied in small and large ways.  That’s what childhood is all about.  Adulthood is about being able to fully understand that those shields we once needed for protection are now preventing us from the success we want, from the full expression we crave, and from shining our light as brightly as we can.  In adulthood, our only path is to drop our shields – they are now only preventing us from having what we truly want. 

4.  It Takes a Village to Get 450 People into One Room for 3 Days

It took 4 months for my entire team, a slew of supportive partners, and a lot of creative marketing to be able to get that many people to participate in the Big Shift Experience.  It took a big goal, lots of effort and consistency EVERY DAY to make this a reality.  It is precisely that consistency of taking steps every day towards a big vision that’s the hardest thing to pull off.  And it is how we do on the days when we feel off, that creates success – not the days when everything feels right.   Nothing worth having is ever easy.  Difficulty, pain and resistance are a natural part of life – suffering isn’t.

BSE entire group 2014

5. Best Way to Deal with Pressure it to BE FULLY PRESENT IN THE MOMENTBe present

It is a lot of pressure to hold the space for 450 people for 3 days.  It’s not easy to deliver content, to facilitate Big Shifts, and to deal with everything surrounding the experience of that many people.  I know what it’s like to deal and perform under pressure.  This Big Shift Experience was different.  This time, at a time when the pressure would seemingly be at its highest – I felt one.  It felt like for the first time in my life I fully surrendered to what was meant to happen.  It took me letting go of results, having faith that I have prepared enough, and that my support team was awesome enough to create an amazing experience.   A couple of times during the event, I had thoughts like “What if this or that happens?”  or “Oh my god, my whole business is riding on me creating an amazing experience!!!”  But this time, I let those thoughts simply pass through me without holding onto the drama of it.  And miraculously it worked.  I was able to be fully present and be in a state of loving acceptance most of the event.  And I am more proud of this that anything I have ever done.  EVER!

So these are my favorite reflections from the Big Shift Experience 2014.  I wasn’t sure I wanted to share all of these learnings with you because I wasn’t sure they would translate on paper.  My team urged me to do it anyway.  So I hope the true meaning of these musings comes through.

So now I want to ask something of you.

Please let me know below in the comments which of these learning resonated with you most and why.

It would really mean a lot to me.



PS – Below are a few more highlights from the event!

Bill BSE

If this had a caption, what would you say I was thinking?

Patrick BSE

Patrick teaching from the stage.


A participant experiencing his Big Shift!


3 ppl BSE

Participant shares

BSC 2014

Big Shifters!




  1. Well said! Thanks for the delightful read

  2. Congratulations for you big event. Maybe one day you will teach people how to create big events just like yours. Thank you.

  3. Yolanda says:

    #1 and #5. Working on a second event–a joint venture. The first one had about 13 people in attendance. We made a little money, but the best part was actually doing the workshops and seeing the eyes and hearts open to a new perspective. Being in the present means I deliver what I’ve got leaving the results to God who has led me down this path to helping others. A few weeks ago I facilitated a workshop and the night before, I actually felt panicky, like I was going to fail. It was unnerving. Then I remembered I was brought here by Divine appointment; there would be no humiliation (one of my biggest fears), only humility as I went out and gave it my best. It was hugely successful and it’s what keeps me moving forward. Love your posts, your enthusiasm and the connection you make with people on your blog posts. Thank you.

  4. Hi BIll
    Great post. Really appreciate you are willing to tell the truth about what was going on for you. I liked best your quote:
    ‘I was able to be fully present and be in a state of loving acceptance most of the event. And I am more proud of this that anything I have ever done’.

    Its the bit ‘I am more proud of this..’ that I like – because surely this is in fact the only thing that is important in life or business. Thanks for sharing that. And in the first photo, by the way, I reckon the caption is ‘I love you, man!’ Lucky person on the receiving end of that look; my guess is they were sharing something you just really loved them for 🙂

  5. Nancy Datte says:

    While I appreciate all your learnings, I most resonate with #1. It is really valuable to hear how your process has been as it gives me encouragement and hope for myself.

  6. Hi Bill,
    The event looked so joyful.Sorry I couldn’t join you. I am so grateful for the way you share your history of challenges and your continued and growing successes. All of your realizations struck home in some way. But the one that really touched me and gave me hope was in “dealing with pressure you have to be fully present”. What courage to just let go and deal with all your fears, your doubts by thinking more of your service to others instead of worrying about what others think of you. It is definitely a place I want to get to in all aspects of my life. Thanks for your contribution to everyone.

  7. Hi Bill, I missed the Big Shift Experience this year, but it sounds like the best ever! I have huge respect for everything that you and your team are creating and the value that your events offer to people who somehow know that they are supposed to be there, at your event, at this exact time.

    Having participated in The Big Shift training 2012/2013, your insights all resonated with me. I am very proud to be growing my business organically – from small to less small so far. I billed my biggest month ever last month and credit many of the tools, mindset shifts, and culture that I gained from your program for helping me achieve these goals. But this insight struck a true cord, and reminded me of Stephen Pressfield’s “Do The Work”:

    “And it is how we do on the days when we feel off, that creates success – not the days when everything feels right. Nothing worth having is ever easy. Difficulty, pain and resistance are a natural part of life – suffering isn’t.”

    Thank you so much for sharing!
    Cheers, Ellen

  8. Joyce Anastasia says:

    Dear Bill and the entire Big Shift community,

    Thank you for your presence and stepping into your greatest way of being in the world. Many moments of the weekend inspired me deeply and the most significant was the “surprise and delight [ful]” guest–Sean Stephenson–Having experienced ‘disabilities’ in my childhood, his fortitude, humor and wisdom blew me away. I remember each of his stories as if I’ve heard them a million times…that rarely happens to me. I’ve recounted them repeatedly because they’ve allowed me to step into my present responsibility to my work, my clients and the rippling impact.

    Challenges have been great gifts to me, bringing me to an ever-evolving place now…present for deep listening and greater shifts in the world.

    It was an honor and joy to deeply connect with so many of you.


  9. Graciela Ramos says:

    Everything said above – and – I finally found what I have been looking for.

    Thank you Bill and Patrick!

  10. Dear Bill
    Thank you for asking for our feedback. I see this as an opportunity for me to practice the Big Shift I came away with. It was my commitment to Vulnerability.

    I made 2 commitments while I was there, both in the wee hours of the morning when I could not sleep, got up, read my notes and subsequently made these commitments: 1. I commit to success 2. I commit to allowing support–I later realized I needed to change that word to RECEIVING support, so I did. But when I got home, I added a new commitment: (I know the power of commitments!) 3. I commit to Vulnerability. That is the biggie and speaks to # 2 and #3 of your article. (I appreciate every one of the 5.)

    As you have mentioned, the most powerful way we teach is by example. Your example of allowing yourself to be truly vulnerable with us over and over again was a catalyst for me. OK–there IS life after vulnerability! I think my worst fear has been that I will break down and cry in front of others–and not be able to stop—just turn into a puddle of tears! I wonder what could be the worst thing that would happen if I allowed that to occur. Hmmm….

    I doubt I will forget your most vulnerable share near the end. It was a cosmic moment. I perceived the whole room go into the most incredible silence and energy together. Then I witnessed crowds line up for your program after that. What a teaching! No, we did NOT reject you after your most vulnerable share! I perceived the opposite to be true! I/we felt CLOSER to you after that!

    Since being home, I have used this powerful teaching to transform my life. I told my newsletter list of 67 my new commitment and shared one of my most vulnerable early childhood stories right after that. I have been so pleased that my inner shift has created an outer shift: people can sense my new openness and are coming closer. This week, I have been busy creating shifts in my business/practice to reflect my willingness to be vulnerable. OMG–Mail Chimp wants my address to be visible at the bottom of my new Newsletter program. So, what am I willing to do to follow through my with new commitment? I can see this will be a daily practice.

    Bill, I wish to reveal the most powerful moment of the whole weekend for me as it further speaks to #2 and #3. Your willingness to “be who you really are” was most powerfully conveyed to me in the first few precious moments of our meeting, which happened in your welcome line. I am so grateful for those moments and do wish for you to know how much it meant to me. I looked into your eyes and perceived you as pretty much “liquid Light”–so dissolved, so melted – and in that dissolution, so powerful, in a different kind of way—so present in your absence, if that makes sense–the true you shining powerfully through your melted exterior. Surrendered. Open. This meeting with you had a profound impact on me and showed me I was in the right place at the right time. There you were modeling both 2&3. No protections, no shielding, just pure openness and receptivity. I want to share that these brief moments with you, eye to eye, impacted me deeply. Thank you for these moments of open connection.

    What am I walking away with? To sum it up: the more vulnerable, transparent, open and surrendered we are, the more intimacy we allow/share with others – and that others are naturally drawn to this -perhaps we/others are even thirsty for this, since it is so rare. Thank You!

    • Bill Baren says:

      Wow, you share melted me even more… I receive your reflection fully and thank you for “seeing” me. And thank you for stepping up into your amazing 3 commitments. And in my experience it’s what happens in day 30 and 90 and 567 of our commitments that make the biggest difference (just a gentle reminder).

      • Hi Bill….one final share as we move on from the BSE. It has taken me awhile to sit with your response and to leave you with this final one. First of all, I am so grateful to have received your “wow”, as I now realize that is one of the biggest complements I/we can receive. It means something I/we have said has really had an impact. For this I am grateful. I am grateful to see my vulnerability created even more “melting” in response—to see this all in action – to see/feel/know that my new openness/vulnerability can indeed have a ripple effect.

        This stream would not be complete if I did not share just one more thing! I wish to share with you that the final moments of the BSE were also very much a catalyst for me. I went up to you to say thank you and you greeted me with such unobstructed openness, that I got to powerfully see my “default” mechanism, which was to still defend and protect myself (here is that shielding). This was the second most impacting moment of the BSE for me. I have taken action since then and am committed to shift my default position to be Love rather than fear and protection. I have been working on this for a very long time, but after seeing this was STILL in place, I have signed up for a workshop with someone I feel can help me shift this deep patterning and am even more committed to clearing this than before the BSE. I want to thank you so much for that pure unobstructed energy of absolute WELCOMING, in the form of a simple open greeting of me. It has sparked my taking even more action than before, to do everything I can now to make this all encompassing, big inner shift. Perhaps next year, I shall be able to receive your clear openness with the same unobstructed energy – and we shall have a lovely, free-flowing exchange!

        With so much respect for the work you have done on yourself and for all you offered me/us at the BSE. I deeply salute all of this!

  11. Bill I can definitely relate to all that you have shared here. I am moving towards making shifts in my life. It has taken me five years to make the progress i have in terms of my health and balancing out all other areas of my life that were so unbalanced and causing a negative impact on my life It wasn’t easy but what i can say is it was well WORTH IT.. What I have come to realize is that nothing is IMPOSSIBLE. After balancing/shifting my life now i am working on my career goals. Its amazing being able to create authentically and from the heart. I hope to make an impact on many people as possible as i move into my bigger journey.

  12. Eva Tana'atara says:

    Hi Bill,
    The wisdom you learnt during your way is amazing! And that you share. Warm hearted congratulation to your successful seminar, to your consistent step towards your goals, and the amazing results. Practice resulted Mastery.
    I resonated with the willingness of vulnerability, and share deepest things #2 and #3
    “talk about things that were still
    raw for me and were not easy to share”
    “protection are now preventing us
    from the success we want”,
    Those sentences touched my heart. And my mind knows that consistent little, everyday step is needed, and I have a deep wish to be able to do all things you listed on your e mail.
    Big hug

  13. I was scheduled to attend, but became too sick to and eventually bedrest was required, so I’m very grateful for your sharing of the 5 ah hah’s and big shifts for you, your team and participants…Thank you for continuing to share your journey, as it helps deepen our own!

  14. The comment about consistency every day inspired me the most.

  15. oh Bill, I *see* you = )

    so proud of this post you have just written.

    feels good doesn’t it?

    This is my fav (although they are all top notch).
    4. It Takes a Village to Get 450 People into One Room for 3
    SPECIFICALLY! this piece
    “And it is how we do on the days when we feel off, that creates success – not the
    days when everything feels right. Nothing worth having is
    ever easy. Difficulty, pain and resistance are a natural
    part of life – suffering isn’t.”

    ‘Cause, man, today and last night, and last week – all I wanted to do was go on an all inclusive trip to Cuba and drink rum drinks and wade in the ocean…but I didn’t and I persisted and learned a lot more critical info for my clients and did another webinar with success..

    keep it coming….

    Irene xo.
    PS. but the Cuba trip will happen! maybe you and your staff can join me = )

    • 1 and 3 resonated with me the most and 4 as well.
      Heck the whole thing resonated with me!

    • Bill Baren says:

      Yes, Cuba!!! I have been wanting to go there for a while. And thank you for “seeing” me. Can’t wait to see what’s possible for you in the next year…

  16. oh Bill, I *see* you = )
    so proud of this post you have just written.
    feels good doesn’t it?
    This is my fav (although they are all top notch).
    4. It Takes a Village to Get 450 People into One Room for 3
    SPECIFICALLY!And it is how we do
    on the days when we feel off, that creates success – not the
    days when everything feels right. Nothing worth having is
    ever easy. Difficulty, pain and resistance are a natural
    part of life – suffering isn’t.

  17. First I’d like to say I LOVED the Big Shift Event and it far exceeded my expectations!

    Right now #5 resonates with me most. I like that you used the word “surrendered” to the moment, as that is exactly how I experienced you. Because you surrendered AMAZING moments of coaching, mentoring, conversation, and transformation happened. It was truly inspiring. So glad you gave yourself permission to be so In the Moment. It showed, and was a real gift to all of us.

  18. Bravo and congratulations Bill! If I could have made my schedule work, I certainly would have been 451 at your event. I’m consistently engaged to see how you can balance business strategy and internal transformation and vulnerability and tie it up to awesome learning.

    Every single one of these points resonated with me and I’m glad your team encouraged you to share them.

    If I had to pick one piece it would be this:

    “I realized that depth is infinite. I can ALWAYS go deeper in my understanding of my craft. I can ALWAYS go deeper in my vulnerability. I can ALWAYS go deeper in the full embodiment of who I really am. And that’s what becomes the catalyst for others to do the same.”

    So many are staying on the surface and saying the same things. I used to think that was the only way I could grow my coaching/consulting business. I am NOT a surface level person. Trying to be someone I was not was painful. I finally let that go and realized that it is okay to go deep fast. I’ve let go that sometimes going deep will make others uncomfortable. I believe the more coaches and messengers that could do this, be open to this, the greater number of transformations that could happen. Thanks for sharing.

    • Bill Baren says:

      Going deep may make others uncomfortable, but your job is not to make people comfortable – it is to change their life. And keeping them comfortable is what keeps them in the same place.

  19. Hey Bill, you are awesome! Being in the moment is what I shoot for and you seem to be great at this. Thanks for your valuable content.

  20. Congratulations on what seems to have been a highly successful and deeply enriching experience. All of your lessons are powerful ones to learn and embody, and I am especially pleased you included number of 5 about the power of being fully present.

    The ability to be fully present is an outcome of the previous 4 and yet also helps actualise them. The more defended we are, the less present we will be. The more prepared we are, the more we can relax and be present. And maybe most importantly the more authentic, real and vulnerable we are the more present we will be.

    To be fully present also means to be fully seen and that takes courage and integrity.

    So well done, and blessings on you, your work and your life.

    • I love your Pickles vest. It’s very sweet.Thanks for commenting on my blog. You asked about the donuts. Yeah, they went over great. I used Pioneer Won78&#m21a;s recipe. I didn’t realize the recipe made so many. I did only have one. Ten times.This morning I made luscious cinnamon rolls, no recipe for that, I just dump stuff in until it comes out right. I have not read the book you mentioned, but I should — I am hopeless at true hospitality, very insecure, and at 40 years of age I really should get over that. Thanks for visiting.

  21. Bill,
    I would say that you did a great job translating your feelings into words in this blog post. As someone who was taking in as much as I could from the energy of the room, I could see and feel that your vulnerability and rawness, your openness and caring was exactly what created many, many shifts in the room. Your energy, compassion and stories drew people in and got them connected.

    Learnings #2 and #5 resonate with me the most as they are the most important learnings I have been experiencing by being a part of your community and your Big Shift Program. The more authentic, real, present and open I become to the people in my own community, the more I can feel people drawing me in and experiencing their own shifts.

    I had the most phenomenal consultation the other day after taking what I got from the Big Shift Experience and applying it to my own work. She has not yet become a client, yet I know that I completely changed her life and her outlook on why she has not yet seen success. It’s that difference that makes me realize my own impact.

    I am grateful to you, Patrick and other people in your community for helping me to see how much value I really provide to others every day. I know that I have so much more to learn and experience.


    • Bill Baren says:

      So glad you are in my world. Can’t wait to witness your continued blossoming… and I know amazing things are in store for you.

    • Patrick Dominguez says:

      Thanks Kim – and know that every day, you have so much more to teach and offer others.

  22. Alex says:

    Thank you Bill! I appreciate you sharing your experience. All five resonated to me but the ones that most resonated were the 2nd and the 5th. How to be vulnerable w/o feeling vulnerable? How being present w/o being aware that I am being present? Are those good questions? Or it’s a matter of being in state of Ah! I like you are very thoughtful about your spirituality, that inspires me! Thank you again! Alejandro

    • Bill Baren says:

      I find that being vulnerable without feeling vulnerable isn’t possible for me. The perception of others of my vulnerability isn’t vulnerability; it’s only when I feel vulnerable and only when I find something difficult to share that creates a profound inner shift for me and everyone present to witness it. Moreover, that vulnerability can’t be a ploy, it has to be real for true transformation to occur.

  23. Hi Bill!

    I most resonated with: “there’s no such thing as an over-night…”
    My partner Matthew and I have a lot of purposes: one of the biggest is the teachings we call ‘OneBreath’. The breathing techniques and instructions held within these teachings which we present through workshops and retreats have incredible transformational effects and have the potential to have a huge impact on global transformation. At one point five years ago we were at teaching on a larger scale but certain life events caused us to downscale…only to realize we need/wish to get back to where we were and move onward and upward at a pace that allows us to reach as many as possible. In our journey forward, I appreciate your words and hearing a little about your journey! Thanks for sharing your heart!
    Lotus Jade

  24. Virginia Muzquiz says:

    Bill — I am forever grateful that Justin and Callan shared your work with me. I purchased your program for one of my sales consultants who was having an impossible time enrolling folks in my coaching and my workshops and she is already feeling so much more secure — after just two modules of Masters of Enrollment! Love your blog and the value of PRESENCE. I am venturing out in June to expand my workshop size from 20-25 to 75-100. It does take a village and I am gearing up my community to help me fill that room. And I am terrified. What if we can’t fill the room? What if I can’t deliver the same shifts that I manage in that more intimate setting. What if my community “let’s me down?” But to be present to the fact that God put this mission on my heart to do a big thing and to the understanding that I will expand in this process is all that is required. Thanks for that! Timing of this message couldn’t have been better!

    • I did the same Virginia, I heard about Bill via J and C, and the fit with Bill felt really good.

    • julia says:

      From all you said above and the tone of your post, it seems appropriate to say, you are walking by faith just by the fact that you’re expanding and you are going to do GREAT, Virginia!!!!!!!!

  25. julia says:

    I only have a weebly website at the moment as I’m doing caregiving and a couple of other jobs to make ends meet until launching my service. I want to democratize coaching. Since I have been given so much, in creativity and inner resources, I want to give to those who come from the same walk of life as me. I want to provide a way they can do things they have never thought they could. Your last paragraph –number four?– is the thing that struck the chord most. I have learned too that if I’m playing music, even if not well prepared and really scared, like just last week (ha!), as long as I stay in the moment it not only doesn’t matter how technically well sing and play… it actually comes out better, probably, because I HAVE to stay in the moment, be transparent, and just have a good time in spite of any shakiness or glitch that may occur. Its been THE most important lesson because it generalizes to any area of life and interaction. Thanks for your insights and honesty, BB. Love and prayers to a “home boy” I grew up near 20th and Castro…

  26. Bill,

    The Big Shift was truly an extraordinary experience. Thank you so much for giving all of yourself to create and hold a space for us to have our own Big Shifts.

    The most powerful lesson for me that you modeled to beautifully is #2: The Most Impactful Thing to Say is the Hardest To Say. The moments when your vulnerability shone through were the moments I felt most connected to you, myself, and the room.

    Your words: “I realized that depth is infinite…I can ALWAYS go deeper in the full embodiment of who I really am. And that’s what becomes the catalyst for others to do the same.” resonate deeply with me. This is the path that I am on and what I want to learn from you.

    All the points are powerful, though. It’s good to know the effort behind the scenes, and I appreciate your transparency. You did a great job putting these concepts into words 🙂

    Much love,

  27. Bill, everything you have said resonates. But #1 is huge. It’s so easy to believe the hype that you can (or even should!) become an overnight sensation and that in some way you have failed, or will fail, if you don’t already have a huge list and enormous numbers of people attending your events. Having a reminder that everyone starts small and builds from there is so important – and that you’re building something you believe in. The other points serve to build from that first one in a way – and it’s clear that your own journey has been instrumental, without it you wouldn’t have what you have. As you have grown, so your business has grown.

  28. #1 ‘There is no such thing as an overnight sensation’.

    I’m in the newbie stage of offering workshops. It’s reassuring and confidence boosting to hear that even somebody like you started off with with small numbers…and in your living room too! It makes me think…well, what have I got to loose, It doesn’t matter how many people my workshops attract, It’s doing them that is important!

    THANKS x

  29. #1 and #3. In my business i am just learning about valuing the small numbers and trusting that they will become bigger.

    I have much experience of the protection becoming the prevention and that is one place where I have focused my personal growth so that I can let go of what no longer serves me. One thing i have learned is that it is important to honor those behaviors and parts of me that worked to protect me. They did an important job and did their best for me. Now it is time to let them go, to give them new jobs, to love myself in new ways.

  30. Kathie Carpenter says:

    Wow Bill – what a wonderfully powerful Big Shift weedend the 450 of you experienced together. It broke my heart to cancel my trip, (due to illness) to San Francisco last weekend. Count me in for Big Shift 2015 – (will my Ryan Eliason “free” ticket still be valid next year?). I can feel through your words and see through your photos that you drew together a very strong soul group of like minded LightWorkers. Blessings to you as you follow your sacred pathway. Your Light shines through your actions and through your communications and the seemingly personal messages that you share (as it is with all of us) are not only for our own self-learning, but for the greater good of all. Thank you for keeping me in the email thread. I value your insights and resonate with your message! God bless.

  31. Hi Bill,
    #5 really got my attention. My Big Shift came exactly when I was under a lot of pressure – being on stage with YOU! Talk about a Pee In Your Pants moment! Getting seen in front of such a huge audience while digging deep down and unearthing the reason why I do what I do and why I want to help people was life changing. You really held my feet to the fire. And I could only have done that because you held that space for me and you were very present. That made all the difference. The amazing thing to me was how present you were the entire 3 days. I am in awe of your energy and commitment. And I am very very glad I made it to San Francisco. Thank you.

  32. Hi Bill! Great event! I left truly inspired. What I resonated with me most in the above article were points 1, 3 and 4. In my Safe to Love Again Workshop i teach all about how our systems are set up to protect the little one, and how this protection limits our abilities to love fully. So, I get how that applies to business growth too. The point is, I totally resonate with your point here. It is SO important to swap out prevention for something better whether it is in terms of love, business, success, money or health. But it is a process here, that is for sure. I love that you are approaching business growth from this much needed perspective.

    For me personally, I really am more deeply touched by your first point. There really is no overnight success. And yet, so many coaches out there seem to be suggesting that success can be overnight. Yet in truth, most entrepreneurs don’t experience success in an over night way. So the hype tends to be more debilitating than liberating. I am so grateful for you offering business sense over hype. Your point reminds me of something that Lisa Nichols once shared, “It took me 10 years to be a success. Yet people say I was an overnight success because of my role in The Secret. But if I was an overnight success, it was the longest night of my life.” So I greatly appreciate your honesty here, Bill. Success is all about taking the steps both internally and business wise that take us to the next level, and those are small steps many times. It took me 2 years to get 61 in the room last year. Yet to be honest, before your event I sometimes i felt like I was a failure for not getting ‘it’ before this. The ‘hype’ said I should have been here years ago. And what about playing an even bigger game? More guilt. Sometimes I feel disappointed in myself for not having developed my business ‘faster’. Yet for me, so many lessons were hard earned and just took time for me to understand all the nuances it takes to inspire people to sign up for the transformation of their lives. So, thanks for keeping it real, Bill. I appreciate a coach who doesn’t promise sugar plumb fairies when it comes to business. That’s way more liberating and empowering than ‘hype’.

    Lastly, I like your point that it takes a village to get 450 people in a room. It DOES take a lot of support and collaboration to do big things! OMG – that is so true! Our supporters truly are the wind beneath our wings. I get that more and more as time goes on, especially after the Big Shift Event. That truth is speaking to me even now – how can I reach out and let myself be supported even as I support others? I’ve been asking myself that question all week since The Big Shift. Moreover, that truth was modeled in your event at every level, and I did notice all the support you had in the room. The more I learn the art of doing that, by watching people like you, the more my business grows. So, thanks for being a model of that type of collaborative success. You inspire me to create my own village of mutual support. I also loved your concept of ‘creating a movement’…which of course, is a bunch of villages put together! We need more positive movements, Bill, and your movement of ‘conscious success’ is so timely for this point in our evolution as the human species, especially at this time where ‘Late Capitalism’ has taken us to a precarious social cliff. That was the other big thing I took away form the event – I need to be more conscious of creating a movement that it is safe to love again for a generation where the bogey man in the closet for many adults is love. I didn’t see that before, so thanks for the inspiration. That section of your workshop truly spoke to my soul. My business vision is now bigger than coaching and workshops. I need all of that to be sure. Yet I realized this weekend that I need to create a movement to really achieve what my Higher Self came here to do. I appreciate you putting me more and more in touch with that part of my soul as it creates my business going forth.

    Mostly though, thanks for being you, Bill. You embody what you teach…and that is, my highest compliment to you as a man and a soul on a definite mission in life. I’ve known you for 4 years now. You inspired me over lunch 4 years ago to walk away from being a graduate professor to building my true life’s calling. It was an hour that changed my life. Thanks for that lunch, Bill! If you ever need support, you know how to reach me.

    – Gary

    • Bill Baren says:

      Thank you for such a beautiful and powerful share. And thank you for reminding me that we can change someone’s life in an instant and the ripples of that can and often are profound.

    • Mehridin: Thank you Zenster.You are more than welcome.I would very much like to gather together some thoughts, like you suggested.I urge you to do so on the strongest possible terms. It seems as though you have some real in depth knowledge of Islam and that, especially in the relatively uneducated West, is priceless.I'm confident that an essay by you concerning the symbiosis (actually interdependence), between supposedly "radical" (actually just devout) Muslims and their ostensibly &qtqa;modertte&ouou; coreligionists would be warmly welcomed here at GoV.

  33. Bill, thank you for being REAL!!! All of them are absolute gems so choosing one was a challenge but I love challenges! So I chose:
    #3. What Was Once Protection is Now Prevention
    Who among us can’t find some moments to reflect on how we’ve used protective shields in our past (or recently). But once you can really dig into the depth of why you needed that protection THEN – it seems to free you up so that you can have more awareness. Awareness is an action step to me. The more I use the gifts of awareness that I have, the more momentum I experience. So with awareness in action I can prevent myself from putting up or even being pulled into using protective shields that lead me astray from the path I’m committed to being on.

    It’s also a key “why” in why Paul and I wrote our book, “5 Steps to Thrive: Reveal Any Crisis As Opportunity.” If we had kept our shields up in full force, we wouldn’t be where we are today on a rapid path of contributing and serving others.

    Thank you for your vulnerable strength!

    Inspired to Thrive,

    • Bill Baren says:

      Thank you, Carol for gifting me your book. I have it in my hand now. And thank you for being such a light. Loved meeting you and your husband at the Big Shift Experience.

      • Bill,
        You are SO WELCOME! I’m so looking forward to working with you! Please let me know your impressions about the book. It’s exciting to finally move into the launch. We’ve schedule 2 book talks in the Bay area – yes, speaking from the stage!

        Warm Regards to you and Gia and your amazing staff!


    • Hi Phlpiil,Thanks for your interest. The time tracking module was a custom project we did, so we would need to get additional requirements from you to put together an estimate. Someone from our team will be in touch soon.

  34. As a parent, I appreciate your #3 – my son is 12 and entering that time of “protection”. I feel that my job is to help him minimize that reaction so it will be easier as an adult to be real and authentic. Your comment helps me remember the reasons why he sometimes puts the shield up.

    The idea I’m resisting is #1. Certainly there is a natural rate of growth to most things in the universe (this is basic ecology). But with preparation and leverage great things can happen quickly. Some bamboo trees spend 7 years building a root network before it sprouts – then it grows over 100 feet in a few months. I have a lot of resistance to the idea that I have to start slowly. But I also acknowledge that growth requires power, focus and commitment.

  35. Hi Bill! You have once again eloquently articulated the deeper and multifaceted waters of life’s process! I resonate with everything you have said. Your description of the process of transformation and what it takes is comprehensive, succinct and so very integrated on all levels. No need for me to reiterate a thing! Much gratitude for all that you have done to be a model of this level of self mastery and capacity to share the depth of your journey and insight in such a clear understadable way! Thank you for being an inspiration to me and so many others!

    • Bill Baren says:

      Thanks, Priya… so lovely to “see” you again – this time on my blog.

  36. #5 Being fully present in the moment. It was so clear to me that you were that. As I read the above paragraph I realized that by you being present with us and for us you created the foundation for extraordinary oneness to blossom and grow. I felt like we were like a grove of Aspen trees with a connected root system.

  37. Bill,
    I was there at Big Shift and I think you have some amazing talents, but I came away from the event feeling it was just one big upsell to your premium $13,000 (Payment schedule cost) year long program. I think you and your team worked the crowd masterfully and genuinely helped some folks really gain great benefit, but there must have been six hours of hard sell during the event. Way too much for my comfort. I paid $1,000 for your enrollment program specifically so i could be at this event. I learned a couple of things and was reminded of a couple of others that I already knew, but I most definitely did not feel it was worth it because of the value I received and all of the selling during the event. Shame on me to be so gullible.
    I met one lady on the last day who joined your program, but who confided that she has no money and no idea how she will make the first payment let alone the second and subsequent payments.
    I appreciate your marketing prowess and strongly believe that 20 out of your class of 100 will achieve good financial success, but I believe 40 will be worse off. I understand that money is the only dimension, but it was obviously a key desire and motivation for most of the attendees to be there.
    Would love to see the statistics on how this last year’s group of students did.
    Looking forward to your response.

    • Bill Baren says:

      Sorry that the experience wasn’t what you were hoping for. Someone on my team is going to call you and get to the bottom what you think we could have done better. I also know that as much I want to do right and please everyone, I simply can’t. And as much as I am used to criticism, it would be a lie to tell you that you comment didn’t hurt. At the same time, to say that “I used hard-selling techniques and that I spent 6 hours selling” is simply not a fact. And just because someone applied to be in my program, that doesn’t mean they will be admitted. I do want to learn from you as to how I can improve and I suspect that there is something underneath your comment that you can learn from as well.

      • Great.
        Happy to discuss it. I look forward to someone calling.
        My comment was not meant to hurt, far from it, merely to let you know what my response was to the experience. I think we all want to know when someone isn’t happy. I strongly believe you have many gifts.

  38. Wow…this one resonated with me…thank you, Bill!

    What was once protection is now prevention:

    In order for most of us to make it through our childhood and
    teenage years we needed to put up shields in order to
    protect ourselves from the pain and suffering of being
    criticized, of being rejected or of being bullied in small
    and large ways. That’s what childhood is all about.
    Adulthood is about being able to fully understand that those
    shields we once needed for protection are now preventing us
    from the success we want, from the full expression we crave,
    and from shining our light as brightly as we can. In
    adulthood, our only path is to drop our shields – they are
    now only preventing us from having what we truly want.

    • I find the assertion that the burden of proof isn’t on the person making an accusation of wrongdoing to be quite troubling. Because what it is really saying is that anti-smoking groups can accuse the opposition of anything they want to, even if it is untrue and they have no domoientatcun or evidence to support the accusations and that there is nothing wrong with that. I reject that.I think that ethical standards of conduct in public health require that health organizations have evidence to back up accusations that they make, whether they be against individuals or against groups.

  39. Thank you! Thank you for so many things: your post, underscoring much of what you actually said at the conference, your openness, your modeling for us. You are truly walking the walk — not just talking the talk.

    The most powerful re-learning for me was to feel the fear and do it anyway with fear just as your companion — not the driver. In my family, the last thing you wanted to do EVER was let yourself be vulnerable. That was the way to get killed. But really, short of physical death, no one kills you without your permission. So I’ve withdrawn the permission, put my arm around my fear, and we are marching forward again together. And while no one does it alone, you need to choose supportive teammates — not soul killers!

    Thank you for giving me the loving boot in the behind I needed.

    • Bill Baren says:

      I love that re-frame around fear and glad you took that away from the Big Shift Experience… Honor to have you there.

  40. #1 really resonates with me the most. Bill, I appreciate your story about how you sucked at first. There are a lot of business coaches out there who talk about how they built their thriving success basically overnight (aka. “Went from 0 to 30 clients in 2 month’s” or “$37 in my bank account to multiple 6 figures in one year”). While those stories are great I don’t think that’s most people’s realities. I love that you don’t just talk about how successful you are now, but also how things were for you and how you sucked starting out! It’s inspiring to those like myself just starting out and with visions of building an empire ! Thank you for your authenticity Bill!

    • Bill Baren says:

      Growing up I wanted financial success to come quickly. And it is that “get rich quick” mindset that prevented success from coming at all. I am so glad to have developed just a little bit of patience. And that makes it a totally new ballgame.

  41. Bill, there’s nobody else like you. I am so in awe of how you balance strength and vulnerability so beautifully!

    First of all, EVERY point you made is one that resonates. You’re so good at summing up the practical and the internal shifts and so honest in how you put it out there. I agree with you on each one, from the “start small” to the “dig deep”.

    But…. if I were to pick ONE THING that really touched me the most, it would be what you wrote:

    “I realized that depth is infinite. I can ALWAYS go deeper in my understanding of my craft. I can ALWAYS go deeper in my vulnerability. I can ALWAYS go deeper in the full embodiment of who I really am. And that’s what becomes the catalyst for others to do the same.”

    We need more people to say this, more people to do this. The willingness to go deeper is what’s going to transform our work as professionals and the results our clients get.

    Big hugs and blessings to you, Patrick, the entire team. This blog post and this dialog is where change starts.

    I’m so happy for all you’re doing and so blessed to count you as a friend in this amazing field we work in!

    • Bill Baren says:

      Thank you so much Nancy for seeing me and for sharing your thoughts. So glad that I get to call you my friend.

  42. Alice Touchette says:

    It all resonated with me, especially 2. Wanting to make things better and ease peoples’ pain does nothing to draw them to you! Communication, and repeated communication is a skill hard learned! It really does take a village! Thanks for sharing

  43. #3 resonates the most. I am so aware of my habit patterns that are often rooted in my childhood experiences.
    It takes a conscious effort on a very regular basis to break those unconscious patterns that happen so fast we don’t even realize that our actions are coming from triggers that go way back.
    My two big ones are “something bad is going to happen” and “i’m scared”.
    The first one has me leaving experiences with others early because i’m afraid something will go wrong and ruin everything.
    The second one has me blaming people for things or taking control before someone has a chance to hurt me.
    I have come a long way in healing these, but it is an ongoing practice.

    • Bill Baren says:

      That is so awesome, that you have such deep awareness of your patterns and triggers. And bravo to your commitment to break those patterns down.


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