#91: What is Your Entrepreneurial Personality Type? With Alex Charfen

Welcome to The Creator's Adventure, where we interview creators from around the world, hearing their stories about growing a business.

In today's episode, our host, Bryan McAnulty, sits down with renowned entrepreneur Alex Charfen, co-founder of the coaching company Sharfen.

Listen until the end of the episode to get Alex Charfen's new book for free!

Together, they tackle the challenges and triumphs of being an entrepreneur, discussing the importance of structure, boundaries, and self-care.

Watch this episode to learn about your entrepreneurial personality and what are the keys to achieving sustainable success and fulfillment as a business owner.

Alex Charfen is a renowned entrepreneur who co-founded CHARFEN, a coaching company that helps other entrepreneurs scale and optimize their businesses and achieve new levels of sustainable growth.

With a career that commenced at the age of 8, working alongside his father in a local flea market, Alex discovered an innate understanding of business and commerce.

He later built several businesses and even endured the 2008 real estate crisis, rebounding to establish a thriving business that helped homeowners and real estate experts during the foreclosure crisis, contributing significantly to its recovery.

Today, Charfen's impressive client roster includes influential entrepreneurs such as Alex and Leila Hormozi, Russel Brunson, Rachel Rodgers and many more.

Learn more about Alex Charfen: https://www.charfen.com/


Alex Charfen [00:00:00]:

Where that small percentage of the population that gets up in the morning, goes into the future, creates a new reality, comes back to the present, and demands it becomes real.

Bryan McAnulty [00:00:07]:

Welcome to the creator's adventure where we interview creators from around the world hearing their stories about growing a business. Today's guest earns 8 figures a year and has Helped clients like Alex Hormozi and Russell Brunson to grow their businesses. We're gonna talk today about what makes the entrepreneurial personality type different and how you can perform at your best. Hey, everyone. I'm Brian McAnulty, the founder of Heights Platform. Let's get into it. Hey, everyone. We're here today with Alex Sharfen.

Bryan McAnulty [00:00:41]:

He is a renowned entrepreneur who cofounded Sharfen, a coaching company that helps other entrepreneurs scale and optimize their businesses and achieve new levels of sustainable growth. With a career that commenced at the age of 8, working alongside his father in a local flea market, Alex discovered an innate understanding of business and commerce. He later built several businesses and even endured the 2008 real estate crisis, Rebounding to establish a thriving business that helped homeowners and real estate experts during the foreclosure crisis contributing significantly to its recovery. Today, Sharfen's impressive client roster includes influential entrepreneurs such as Alex and Leila Hormozi, Russell Brunson, Rachel Rogers, and many more. Alex, welcome to the show.

Alex Charfen [00:01:30]:

Thanks, Brian. It's good to be here, man.

Bryan McAnulty [00:01:33]:

Yeah. I'm glad to have you on. So my first question for you is, what would you say is the biggest thing either that you did or you are doing that has helped you to achieve the freedom to do things you enjoy?

Alex Charfen [00:01:49]:

You know, Brian, I think that starts with, understanding what you actually enjoy. I think that one of the biggest issues in the entrepreneurial world is that we are subject to massive amounts of conditioning, psychological conditioning. You know, I, I've been an entrepreneur. I'm I'm 50. I'll turn 51 this month. It's November already. So I'm about 11 days from 51, and when I look at the entrepreneurial world in general, I think what happens is, You know, somebody in our world raises their hand and says, I wanna be a business owner. I'm gonna go build something.

Alex Charfen [00:02:24]:

And in order to successfully build a business, we do everything. Like, literally, you have to do everything. You're the only person in the business. And so successfully starting a business conditions us to do everything because in order to create success, that's We did. And what happens to so many entrepreneurs, I would say the majority of us, is that we're working towards this outcome. We're working towards this goal. We're doing everything. We Feel oftentimes overwhelmed, oftentimes like we're the biggest bottleneck in the business, but we have this outcome of you know, it's different for everybody.

Alex Charfen [00:02:54]:

We have this up making a certain amount of money or getting out of a full time job or gaining some type of freedom or moving away from having somebody else control our time and our efforts and our energy. But what often happens is we put ourselves into a cage of our own making, and onto a treadmill of our own making where we are Doing things every day that we don't really wanna do, where we are, working on things that we don't really wanna work on, where we don't feel fulfilled, we don't feel like we're doing what we really enjoy in the world, And there's some people who can overcome this. You know? There's a lot of entrepreneurs out there that the quest for success and attention and money is Enough that they will do things that they don't really wanna do. But I think as entrepreneurs, one of the things that we rarely ask ourselves is what do I want To be doing. What do I enjoy doing? What lights me up? What makes it so that I'm excited about what I'm doing? What makes it so that things feel effortless? And, you know, you mentioned a couple of my friends in the intro, Alex and Leila, and you mentioned Russell and and even Rachel, and a lot of the entrepreneurs I've worked with. When I look at the commonality of the individuals that go from 7 to 8 figures, the ones who make a massive impact, the ones who gain a ton of including everybody you mentioned. They are really passionate about what they do, and they love what they're doing, and they love the people they're doing it for, and they're with helping those people. Like, Rachel is such a good example.

Alex Charfen [00:04:18]:

Rachel Rogers, who wrote the book, We Should All Be Millionaires. You know, she, she works with underprivileged and underserved Communities of women and sometimes men, mostly women, but she is so passionate about that. She would be doing it anyway. And I think that often as entrepreneurs, we don't ask ourselves, what I want to be doing. We ask ourselves, what do I need to do? And we work from this place of need. And in my experience, when someone breaks away from need and starts moving towards what They want and what they're excited about and what they would do anyway, that's when things get effortless, and that's when businesses really grow.

Bryan McAnulty [00:04:49]:

Awesome. Yeah. I completely agree with that. And I think you're right that some people we become entrepreneurs, and then we end up putting ourselves on a different treadmill. And, it gets away from us of that the thing that that vision or or what we originally wanted. And so for me, I'm always trying to bring myself back and realize, like, The the freedom, the impact, and doing what I enjoy, that is above everything. And the way I wanna look at it is You should be doing something every day that regardless of the outcome of the today, you would be doing that same thing tomorrow.

Alex Charfen [00:05:23]:

Yeah. Yeah. I think that that's lost. You know, I I often joke with entrepreneurs that were the the that percentage of the population that'll give up a 9 to 5 so that we we can work a six To 11, and I don't mean 6 to 11 in the morning. You know, it's it's, it's an interesting Equation that as entrepreneurs, we often go away from something and put ourselves into a situation where we're right back to something we wanna go away from. And so I think that's the key. It's like, what what would you be doing anyway? What excites you? You know? For me, my whole life, I've had a recession with with Studying successful people with studying the personality of successful people, what makes people successful, that grew into writing the book, the entrepreneurial personality type, And that stuff that I do anyway. Like, I can't turn it off.

Alex Charfen [00:06:11]:

No matter what, I'm I'm studying successful people. I'm listening to the latest interviews. I'm Reading third party accounts, biographies, like trying to understand more about this personality type in the world, this evolutionary hunter that gets up every day, goes in the future, creates a new reality, then comes Back to the president makes it real, and that's effortless for me. It's timeless. It doesn't feel like work, and so that's, like, the exciting part of what I do. I think for too many entrepreneurs, that exciting part of what we do is not there anymore because we've we've decided we're gonna chase a number or an outcome or, a size of a business. And, you know, I know a lot of people who have experienced, quote, unquote, financial success, but they can't Stand the life that they've made for themselves, and so I think it's something that we should be thinking about and at least have on our radar, is this something I'm enjoying?

Bryan McAnulty [00:07:02]:

Yeah. Yeah. I like that. I really like the, entrepreneurial hunter that comes comes back to

Alex Charfen [00:07:07]:

Evolutionary hunter.

Bryan McAnulty [00:07:08]:

Present present to, make reality. That's that's awesome. I wanna get into talking about that book. Before that, can you explain, like you mentioned the or well, I mentioned in the bio, your journey began when you're only 8 years old.

Alex Charfen [00:07:22]:


Bryan McAnulty [00:07:22]:

Can you share maybe, like, a pivotal experience from those early years that you feel might have shaped your approach to entrepreneurship?

Alex Charfen [00:07:29]:

Yeah. So I grew up in in a in a house with a entrepreneurial father. And When I was actually born in Mexico, my family lived in Mexico. My father's from Mexico. And when I was really young, he was a partner with Deloitte Touche. It's one of the big Accounting firms in the world, so he ran the Mexico office for them. And, there was a point where we had to leave Mexico because They started doing some business with the Mexican government. At one point, my dad disappeared for 2 days.

Alex Charfen [00:07:58]:

My mom didn't know where he was. He was being questioned. And so it got into this, challenging place where we had to leave, and we moved to the United States. And my dad started a concrete roofing tile business in the seventies, which which went really, really well until it completely fell apart. There was, there was a real estate crisis in the seventies heading into the to the early eighties, and he lost his business and and And had to sell everything and liquidate it. He didn't go bankrupt. It was close. The real estate that was underneath the factory actually saved him.

Alex Charfen [00:08:33]:

And we started working in a flea market. And I was I was working, like, really long hours, probably 12, 14 hour days with my dad. We broke every type of law there is. I'm sure that, Like, you know, health and human services or OSHA or somebody would have would have shut us down, but it was interesting, Brian. In the world, I was always a very different kid. You know, when when adults would see me coming with other kids, they'd be like, oh, it's Brian and Sarah and Alex. And I always knew, like, why they were saying that. I knew I was different.

Alex Charfen [00:09:05]:

I knew I was annoying. I knew I asked questions that frustrated people. And, what I didn't get along well with other kids. I didn't get along well with teachers. I always felt kind of like an outcast in a party of 1. But when I started working in business, there was a structure, there was a format, There was a goal. There was outcomes. Standing behind the table at a flea market at 8 years old, I could influence somebody to buy something, and it It just showed me that, like, hey, there's a place for me.

Alex Charfen [00:09:29]:

It's not where everybody else is, and it's not what everybody else thinks I should be doing, but this thing like this business thing. This is actually something I should probably focus on. And from very, very young, it became a massive focus. I worked with my dad in the flea markets. I sold candy in school. I At a window washing company, I started a financial consulting firm in college. I was always doing something on the side. You know, I had side hustles before most kids have bikes.

Alex Charfen [00:09:54]:

And, it was just kind of like who I am. And so I think the most influential part of that part of my childhood is that I recognize and realize there's this world of business where for the most part, we get to make our own rules, and we get to our own outcomes and pursue what we want. And for me, when I was younger, if I was excited about something and I was interested in something, it was completely and totally Effortless. I could learn more than anybody around me. If it was something that I didn't care about, I was literally, like, incapable of learning. And and teachers would say things like, you know, you just need to pay attention and apply yourself. I'm 51 years old. I still don't know what that means.

Alex Charfen [00:10:36]:

Like, pay attention to what? I don't care, You know, and apply myself to what? Like, it this feels frivolous. It feels like it doesn't matter. And so I think, you know, that one of the big lessons was, like, Follow momentum and follow what feels right and follow what's exciting because then everything gets easier.

Bryan McAnulty [00:10:53]:

Yeah. Yeah. I like that. I I think some of those things other entrepreneurs listening would feel that they can share some commonalities in that in in the way that they they think and feel. I know that that I can. So you've worked closely with all these influential entrepreneurs. You've built multiple successful businesses and helped all these entrepreneurs thrive. What common traits and practices have you observed kind of among a successful individual like this that maybe an aspiring entrepreneur can learn from.

Alex Charfen [00:11:26]:

I think, I I mean, I think 1st and foremost, Brian, is, like, as entrepreneurs as an entrepreneur, you should love the outcome you're creating in the world. It should mean everything to you. Like, that market that you're you're serving, the people that you're serving. You know, oftentimes, when as entrepreneurs, what happens is We, like, grow, we develop, we learn things, and then we turn around and help the person that we work. Everybody you mentioned, that's the scenario. Rachel became an attorney, built a business, turned around and helped the person She was before she had the business, before she was I

Bryan McAnulty [00:11:59]:

mean, a 100% is so many, like, our customers course creators almost all the time that's what they're doing.

Alex Charfen [00:12:05]:

So A 100 you know, and that's what we should do. And you look at Alex and Leila. Alex was a struggling entrepreneur, slept on the floor of his gym, had a really hard time with it, built gym launch, Helped a whole bunch of gym owners. Now he's got Acquisition .com. He's helping, you know, all entrepreneurs. Same with Russell. Russell was a struggling online marketer, not really making money, built this platform that Help struggling online marketers. And the commonality that I see is that there is a massive amount of passion and Protection for the people that they serve and, an energy to the people that they serve because here's what happens for us as entrepreneurs.

Alex Charfen [00:12:38]:

You know, there's there's cycles we go through. When you're first trying to make money, it really is just about the money. Then you start making some money, and then it becomes about managing the money and managing growth. And then you have enough money that you don't really after work. And that can be one of the most confronting times for entrepreneurs. And what I found is the ones that continue to grow, that Continue to build. They continue to move things forward. Like, everybody you mentioned, I know him personally, they don't have to work probably ever again in their lives.

Alex Charfen [00:13:02]:

Actually, I can confirm that. The people you mentioned do not have to ever work again. They built enough wealth where they could just bail out, but they're there because they care about what They're doing they're there because they care about the market that they serve. That passion, that connection to the people you serve has to be Super strong, like, indelibly strong because being an entrepreneur is hard, and you're gonna hit times where you're Confronted by the world around you, but if you really care about the people you're serving, that's what's gonna keep you moving forward. You know, it's interesting. I haven't gotten to listen to the whole thing yet, but, Elon Musk did another podcast with Joe Rogan yesterday, and I've gone back and listened to the original too. And When I look at him as a as a person, regardless of all the politics and what everybody else thinks about him, he's like an an evolutionary hunter on A 12 out of 10. You know? He's, like, so over the top with with who he is and what he's doing, and, like, You look at what he's accomplishing in the world.

Alex Charfen [00:14:04]:

I know he gets a lot of criticism. I tend to, like, just kinda, like, let that roll roll to the side because when you look at what he's accomplishing in the world, it is Extraordinary. It's godlike. Like, literally, he is creating so much that it is, like, godlike. And I don't wanna offend anybody with that, but, like, god has imbued with us with the ability to be creators, and so that is a godlike characteristic that we have. And if god lives in all of us, then He is absolutely showing how it lives in him. He's he's, you know, created these companies that are changing the future of the world. And If you watch his interviews, when he's challenged or when he's told that people criticize him or when he's told that that People look at him in a in a negative way.

Alex Charfen [00:14:45]:

He, in the moment, gets emotional. Here's the richest man in the world crying in an interview Because he cares so much. Because he has this view of the future where he sees these things we need to do to change humanity, to to to Allow humanity to survive, and part of my belief about him is the reason he's able to accomplish so much is really twofold. 1 is He cares more about what he's doing than anything else in the world, and you can see that in the way that he responds to answers. And 2, he's raw. His emotions are Right there on the surface. He doesn't hold anything back. He gets irritated.

Alex Charfen [00:15:20]:

He's irritated. He gets emotional. He's emotional. He works through what he's doing as he's doing it, and I think a lot of us as entrepreneurs could from that.

Bryan McAnulty [00:15:29]:

Yeah. Yeah. I I definitely agree. So yeah. You mentioned or, like, alluded to a couple things of where Somebody can get stuck if they're not thinking or framing things a certain way. If they're not looking at a certain way, they get caught on the treadmill. They get caught in Worrying about the financial success. Forget about their their passion and everything in the beginning.

Bryan McAnulty [00:15:52]:

So as a business coach, Can you kinda walk us through what are, like, the core elements of how you would guide or assist an entrepreneur in optimizing both their business and achieving scalability?

Alex Charfen [00:16:03]:

Yeah. Absolutely, Brian. I think When you look at what we do as entrepreneurs, every one of us and I'll ask you, like, have you had this period in your life? It's the period where You're may you're going through a transition, and you're going in a new direction. One that's typically guided by you, and there's this tiny little light at the end of this incredibly long tunnel that you're climbing through, and you can see the light, but the people around you are saying like, hey, Brian. You don't have enough time. You know? You have too much time. You know? You're too young. You're too old.

Alex Charfen [00:16:36]:

You're, you know, you're not you don't don't have the experience. You have too much experience. You don't have the money. You know, you you whatever it is, the people in your world are, like, discouraging you, but as as evolutionary hunters as these people with With this instinct to create momentum and go forward, we move towards that light, and we put up with the challenges and the vulnerability and the the conflict and Everything else that it takes to get there, and we move that light towards us. And even though the people in our world are saying, hey. That light is a train. We move ourselves towards it, and and we finally step through it. And that's where we create our lives.

Alex Charfen [00:17:10]:

And have you had that period in your life?

Bryan McAnulty [00:17:12]:

Yeah. Yeah. Definitely.

Alex Charfen [00:17:14]:

It's it's like universal for all of us. Here's the issue. Those periods of our lives condition us to put up with way more pressure and noise than we actually need to. And, you know, I had the this concept of pressure and noise for me, like, when I look at what's Challenging an entrepreneur. When I look at what's going on in our lives, people like to call it different stuff. It's like health and and relationships and family and finances and all these other things. I just say, like, look. There's a lot of pressure and noise in our lives.

Alex Charfen [00:17:40]:

And as entrepreneurs, we put up with far more than the average person. If you're running a business, You have more decisions and more vulnerability and more insecurity by noon on the 1st day of the month than the average person will have all month. It's just who we are because the answers, we're creating them as we go along. And one of the disciplines, one of the strategies that I teach entrepreneurs Is to proactively lower the pressure and noise in your life anywhere you can so you have more capacity for what you're actually doing. Because here's what happens to us, and here's what a lot of the market tells us. You know, you see these messages like, get up every day, grab a cup of coffee, and go to work, and put in 12 hour days, put in 16 hour days. All nighters are like a rite of passage. You have to sacrifice everything in your life to get to where you wanna go, and I you know, I've been doing this for a long time.

Alex Charfen [00:18:27]:

I've been coaching and working with and consulting with entrepreneurs for over 30 years now. And in my experience, the people who treat entrepreneurship that way, the people who are 12 hours, 14 hour days, the people who, don't lower the pressure and noise around them. The people who are subject to all of that pressure and and and challenge, sometimes they're financially successful, but they're rarely happy, And they're rarely fulfilled. And there's this really challenging things that that happens to entrepreneurs is where we're making a lot of money, but we don't feel filled. I've seen this so many times. I've lost count where the money actually creates another level of judgment that we use against ourselves. It's like, look. I have so much money, and I Still don't feel like I'm doing what I wanna do.

Alex Charfen [00:19:12]:

And oftentimes, I I end up working with those entrepreneurs where they're they feel hollow. They feel empty. You know, my My friend Larry Hagner shared this quote with me. He said, I know some people that are so poor, all they have is money. And it really makes you know, it's it's that's real. I've seen it way too many times, and what I encourage entrepreneurs to do is this discipline of lowering pressure and noise for you as a human being. Like, Look at the people in your lives, the places that you go in your life, the things that you have in your life, and ask yourself, are these things giving me momentum? Are they taking them away? And if they're taking them away, cut those things out of your life. I know that sounds brutal, but we have to kinda be ruthless with how much noise we allow ourselves because If we're allowing noise that we don't need, it's going to take up our capacity to create the success, the impact, and the contribution that we want.

Alex Charfen [00:20:01]:

And so Get that stuff out of your life and and and be ruthless in that regard. Not 16 hour days, but ask yourself, where is the noise coming from? How can I calm things down? You know? I I use practices like sauna, cold plunge, breath work, meditation. I call it just time in neutral. I meditation has so many connotations that make us feel We're losing. I just spend 20 minutes, lay down, turn out the lights, and whatever comes up comes up. I allow it to process, and I always feel better afterwards. And when we have practices like that, we're we're reducing the noise. What happens is we increase our capacity.

Alex Charfen [00:20:37]:

We increase our creativity, And we increase our ability to be entrepreneurs because when you lower the pressure and noise in our lives, we start seeing a brighter future. When you lower pressure and noise, We start seeing the unique connections that allow us to see the solutions we wanna create. When you lower pressure and noise, the high sensitivity that we have as entrepreneurs becomes a superpower. On that same token, if you're under high pressure and noise, high sensitivity feels like everything's under attack. High sensitivity, our ability to perceive Unique connections. We can't see the forest for the trees. When we have high pressure and noise, we have a hard time even knowing what step to take next. And so It's a I know it's not a common, it's this is not common advice for entrepreneurs because I hear so many people say things like just shut up and work harder.

Alex Charfen [00:21:27]:

But in my experience, when we're willing to take care of ourselves, When we're willing to create boundaries, when we're willing to say what we accept in our lives and what we don't, and when we start really Giving ourselves the time we need, that's where massive success happens. And this is not my theory. This is actually what I've watched Over and over again. You know, I've I've been on the journey of helping a a lot of entrepreneurs go from 6 to 7 figures, from 7 to multiple 7, from 7 to 8, and even some from 7 from 8 9. And in my experience, that discipline of taking care of yourself and treating yourself like you should Is the gateway to creating the success you really want and not creating success that feels like a cage or feels like a never ending treadmill.

Bryan McAnulty [00:22:16]:

Yeah. Yeah. I think, like, as you're saying, like, when you're an entrepreneur, these things, the the noise and the pressure as you describe it, like, that's gonna come up no matter what. And no matter the the things that you you create these constraints to give yourself that focus or that time, things are just still gonna come at you. So Why not do the best that you can to optimize for that? Because things are still going to happen. And I made the mistake, like, Early on when I started my business, I started as a, web design studio, web design development. And I thought, like, I really care about my customers. I'm gonna be available anytime because I can work whenever.

Bryan McAnulty [00:22:55]:

So I can respond to an email at 10 PM or or whatever it is. And I thought, like, that this is, like, a a positive trade and and but also a benefit of an entrepreneur that I don't need a schedule. And now I've realized that This is not the right not the right way to do things. And especially as you grow, it's just there's no way that you can sustain that. And so it's not that I stopped caring about my customers. I care about my customers so much and exactly as you described when you you have this passion and this drive, like, You wanna do everything for that customer and the person that you're serving. So I realized that the schedule is super important. I have to have these blocks where I can't be interrupted, where I'm not going to respond to anybody and and all of that.

Bryan McAnulty [00:23:40]:

So that way, like, I can be in the zone of providing and thinking and creating what I'm best at doing.

Alex Charfen [00:23:48]:

Yeah. Yeah. It's funny. You know, there's there's kinda 2 things that come up for me with what you just said, Brian. So first, I did the same thing in my twenties. I ran a really successful financially successful consultancy. I kind of fell into it. I've told the story on a lot of podcasts, so I won't get into the details, but just kind of high level.

Alex Charfen [00:24:06]:

Started at 21, had a few major accounts, built a company to quarter $1,000,000,000 in sales. It was a multimillion dollar company. I had, offices in the US and Latin America and from the outside perspective was that I was incredibly successful. You know, I had the cars and the the money and all that Stuff to show for it. I was also dying. I was working 7 days a week, minimum 10 or 12 hours a day, most days more. I rarely left my home unless I was traveling for business, and then it was like working on the plane, working in the the airport, working in the hotel, like, just constantly in chasing this outcome that I lost sight of. Like, there was a point where I had a ton of money.

Alex Charfen [00:24:46]:

I was just sitting in a bank account. I didn't have time to figure out what to do with it. I literally had 100 of 1,000 of I was in a checking account and and just didn't have time to even address it. And when I was 30, I I was I'm fortunate to have met my wife, Katie, and it was one of those events in my life that completely shifted perspective permanently, and I sold that company as fast as I could. I realized I was almost £300. I was on 4 soon to be 5 different prescription drugs. My doctor told me I was his most likely candidate for a heart attack, And so here I was. I had created, quote, unquote, success, and my life was literally falling apart.

Alex Charfen [00:25:29]:

And so I've been there. I've I've seen what that looks like. I know what it looks like when you sacrifice everything and just go for the dollars, and, You know, it it helped me become independently wealthy. It helped me have, you know, resources for what I wanted to do. But when I look at it, the only place I experienced success was financially. Everything else was a disaster, and it wasn't until I met Katie and and realigned my priorities That things started moving in the right direction. Yeah. And the second thing that comes up for me with what you said, Brian, is it, as entrepreneurs, We get into this for freedom, and so we fight this thing called process structure and routine.

Alex Charfen [00:26:06]:

You know? And so You tell an entrepreneur like, oh, hey. You should have a daily huddle. Oh, I don't want the same meeting every day. Or you tell an entrepreneur like, you should sit down and do monthly planning. Oh, I don't wanna do the same thing every month. You know? Or, hey. You should have a morning routine, so you set your dad for success. Oh, I like to flow in the morning.

Alex Charfen [00:26:22]:

Whenever somebody says they like to flow, I'm like, you're flowing down the toilet, because you you you know, if you're if you're if you're killing yourself with decision making fatigue, if you don't have process and structure in your life for our personality, It's really difficult, but here's why we fight it. Like, I I I I have insight into why we are so against it. Because when you look at the systems we have existed in, the process structure and routine that has been imposed on us, you know, for lot of us, it was school. For a lot of us, it was other jobs. For a lot of us, it was social situations where we were either surviving a system or gaming a system, but the system never felt like it were for us. And as a result, so many of us have rejected all process, all structure, all routine. It's like, I don't want it anywhere near me. I'm just gonna be independent and and on my own.

Alex Charfen [00:27:10]:

But there's a major turning point for us when we accept that, hey. If I have minimum effective dose process structure and routine that was created for a person like me, I can get 10 times as much done. I can support myself in a way that I'm not supporting. I can make sure that I'm actually physiologically and psychologically and chemically optimized So that I create way more success in a way more present and embodied way that I have been. And And I think that that acceptance that, yes, we fight process, structure, and routine for good reason. But if we can create process, structure, and routine in our lives that actually Everything will get easier.

Bryan McAnulty [00:27:47]:

Yeah. Yeah. I I I can relate to what you're saying about wanting to to fight against that. For me, personally, the the the framing or shift that made me realize that I want this is Valuing my time and realizing you can't get more time. Yeah. So if I care about my time, I wanna do Wanna spend every moment of my time doing the things that I enjoy or whatever it is in that moment that I wanna be doing the most, whether it's growing my business, spending time with family, Whatever it is, then there has to be structure and constraints around what is happening in my life to allow for that.

Alex Charfen [00:28:24]:

Yeah. Yeah. Boundaries. Boundaries are so crucially important. And as entrepreneurs, we're encouraged to Eliminate boundaries. We're encouraged to, like, have 1 boundary. I'm gonna do the same thing all the time. I'm gonna work, you know, permanently and sacrifice everything and it just doesn't work.

Bryan McAnulty [00:28:44]:

Yeah. Yeah. So I'm sure you talk about a lot of this in your book, entrepreneurial personality types. Can you explain maybe more about that or more about how, like, understanding one's entrepreneurial personality type can benefit Their business and their growth?

Alex Charfen [00:29:00]:

Yeah. I think that as entrepreneurs, we have a very difficult time feeling seen or heard, and, all All of us feel completely different than the rest of the world. Would you say that you have had that feeling in your life, Brian?

Bryan McAnulty [00:29:13]:

Yeah. A 100%.

Alex Charfen [00:29:15]:

Yeah. Like, we are we're different. You know? Like I said earlier, that small percentage of the population that gets up in the morning, goes into the future, creates a new Reality comes back to the present and demands it becomes real, and we put up with the vulnerability and exposure that that that journey requires. And The book, the entrepreneurial personality type book that I wrote, you know, I was actually trying to write a different book on on process and structure in a business. And I was writing the book proposal, and it got to the place where I was supposed to describe my market. And I think I had 300 or 400 words, something like that, to write a description of my market, and I couldn't. And, you know, entrepreneurs and successful people is something I've studied my whole life since I was young. I've just I've read biographies and autobiographies and third party accounts of, like, what makes People successful.

Alex Charfen [00:29:58]:

And I started seeing these commonalities with this. And and as I was trying to write the book proposal, I got Stuck, and I went and talked to my wife. I went and got water. I was it's like a Saturday morning when I was trying to knock this out. And I came back and I said, Ted, you know, I'm I'm just gonna remove the constraint and write what I feel, and then we'll cut it down later. Well, that weekend, I wrote, like, 22,000 words, and it became the EPT book, which is about half that. We edited it down, and my hypothesis, my theory, what I think is absolute truth, is that Entrepreneurs are a subpopulation of human beings. We are physiologically sensitive, momentum based beings that are highly reactive to constraint, And that's how I define the evolutionary hunter.

Alex Charfen [00:30:39]:

That's how I define our personality type. And what I mean by that is we're physiologically sensitive. We feel the world around us. You know, when somebody walks into the room, if it's a good person or bad person, we can feel it. If we walk into a room where a conversation was being had, we know whether it was positive or negative. Like, there's The you know, our gut, our instincts, our intuition is how we navigate the world. And we're not just physiologically sensitive. We're momentum based.

Alex Charfen [00:31:02]:

It's like we are the percentage of the population that lives to be in momentum. You know, psychology has this theory where you have to have either intrinsic or extrinsic motivation. Something internally is motivating you or externally is motivating you. I've spent my whole career around entrepreneurs. We're just motivated. We have innate motivation, like, And if you don't have a place to put it, it becomes the most annoying thing in the world. You can hear it in the words of entrepreneurs. They say things they say things like I'm I'm spinning my wheels, and I'm not going anywhere.

Alex Charfen [00:31:27]:

You know? I feel like I just need to do stuff. I feel like I'm I'm running it through molasses, you know. I it it's it's who we are. And that last part of it that we're Highly reactive to constraint is crucial because for people like us, when we're in momentum and this is a question I ask when I go on Speak. I've been able to share this information with hundreds of thousands of people live. And when I go out and speak, I'll ask an audience, like, what does it feel like when you're in momentum? That's all the context I give him. I don't say, like, here's what momentum is, and this is and instantly, entrepreneurs will say things like, it feels like, it's orgasmic. It's incredible.

Alex Charfen [00:32:05]:

It's, overwhelming. It's the best feeling in the world, and then somebody sooner or later says, it feels like I'm alive. And in my experience, for people with our personality, when we're in momentum, we feel alive. And when we're facing resistance, it's that story I told earlier. If we're facing resistance and we can still see the outcome, we turn around and we create momentum. But there's this place for us, this place of constraint that is, like, the most dangerous place for people like us. It's where we don't see our next steps. It's where that light at the end of the tunnel goes away.

Alex Charfen [00:32:37]:

It's It's where we feel like we're held in place. Like, we don't know where to go next. We don't have the answer of what we really wanna do. Maybe we've had So much pressure and noise in our lives that it's all come tumbling down sometimes by our own making, but when we're in that place of full constraint, it feels like we are dying, And we become symptomatic. Like, we look disordered. We look disabled. We look challenged. Oftentimes, Those that place of full constraint comes along with really crazy things like suicidal ideation and frustration with ourselves and attacking other people and triggerability and reactivity.

Alex Charfen [00:33:12]:

And so when I talk about the entrepreneurial personality type, the most important thing for us is to always have an orientation where we're moving something forward and look and and hunting something. If we're evolutionary hunters, we need to be on the hunt. And here's the crazy thing about people like us. As we approach the outcome to a goal, it loses importance to us every single time. Would you agree, Brian? Yeah. Like Yeah. You set this big number or you set the outcome, and as you approach the finish line, like, before you get there, it doesn't matter anymore.

Bryan McAnulty [00:33:48]:

Yeah. Would you like thinking about okay. Well, what's the next what's the next call? What's the next thing?

Alex Charfen [00:33:53]:

What's next? Why are we like that? Because There has been tens of 1000 of years of human conditioning, of epigenetic conditioning, of programming that has programmed us to get up every day And go on the hunt and keep the human tribe alive. And making a kill, actually accomplishing something doesn't turn that off. It just makes it stronger. And so when we understand that this is who we are, when we understand that this is who we always will be, and that if we take care of ourselves, we can channel this incredible gift of innate motivation and sensitivity to see the world in a different way and the ability to perceive unique connections and the ability to improve the world around us. When we lower pressure and noise in our lives, All of the attributes of the entrepreneurial personality type become superpowers. And if you're willing to go on that journey, you will be Shocked at what you're able to do. And if you go in the other direction, you will always feel that constraint. You will always feel held back.

Bryan McAnulty [00:34:51]:

Yeah. Yeah. That's excellent. I'm curious what your thoughts are on like, a lot of what you're describing, I feel like, can Be compared to also, like, athletes. Like, the momentum and the the the drive and and just having to perform, like, A way that I view things is that I know I've got the set time in the day. I've got a set amount of time that I wanna dedicate to work. And so for me, health is important because I want to be able to perform at the best of my ability just like an athlete wants to perform at the best of their ability at whatever sport they're playing. So I know from being friends with you on Facebook for a while, like, you've got the blue light glasses blue light blocking glasses and things like that.

Bryan McAnulty [00:35:34]:

What are your thoughts on on that and on taking care of your health as an entrepreneur?

Alex Charfen [00:35:40]:

I think it's the most important thing we can do as entrepreneurs, and I don't think enough people are talking about that. I think, you know, there's, I can't remember. I'm paraphrasing the quote, but, like, a man who has his health has a 1000000 goals, and a man who doesn't only has 1. And for us as entrepreneurs, we will Oh, literally grind ourselves into the ground, and I've watched this again for decades, where what we need to understand is things like Lyme disease and autoimmune and Hashimoto's and and adrenal fatigue and, you know, chronic fatigue and all of these social anxiety and anxiety disorder We're in depression, and all these other things are a function of how we're treating ourselves. Like, it is very difficult to stay clinically depressed If you're getting up every day and going for a mile walk in the morning, it just doesn't happen. It's hard to make those things the same. You know, if you're if you're getting up and getting in a sauna and getting in a cold plunge, It's really, really difficult not to focus that day. You know, there's there's ways that we can program ourselves to be infinitely more successful.

Alex Charfen [00:36:43]:

When I speak to groups of entrepreneurs, I ask a simple question. Like, how many of you think you're gonna be have a make $1,000,000 in your lifetime? And, Brian, every hand goes Like, there's a optimism in rooms of entrepreneurs. Even if they've never made a dollar, their hand still goes up. And I'll say, okay. Great. You're a $1,000,000 racehorse. Like, I want you to remember the analogy of the $1,000,000 racehorse, the metaphor of the $1,000,000 racehorse. Because if you see a $1,000,000 racehorse, They've got a trainer.

Alex Charfen [00:37:07]:

They're getting the of the right diet. The person who's working them out knows what they're doing. They've got a veterinarian there. They're they're protected. Like, you can look at the horse and go, Jesus, that horse Probably is worth a lot of money. You look at the average entrepreneur that believes they can milk make $1,000,000, and they're treating themselves like a mutt. They're completely beating themselves up, Destroying themselves and grinding themselves into the ground. And for us, specifically, like, I I I talk about entrepreneurs because I don't really spend a lot of time with the rest of the world.

Alex Charfen [00:37:33]:

But for us, when we start taking care of ourselves, it creates a higher level of self love of who we are. When we start to offload trauma because every one of us has significant trauma, We wouldn't be entrepreneurs without it. And I know that might not be a popular opinion, but I'd love to debate the other side of that with anyone. I've worked with With thousands of entrepreneurs, never met one that doesn't have massive unresolved, unprocessed trauma. When we start processing that trauma, when we start taking care of ourselves, When we put practices in our lives that actually physiologically, cognitively, and chemically support us, everything changes. And, You know, I always I I often tell people, like, I'm a visionary, and as a visionary, I'm a creator. I'm an artist. An artist.

Alex Charfen [00:38:22]:

Like, it took me a long time to figure out that I was an artist, but this book is art. You know? And when I go out and speak in front of a in front of a a group of people, like, I was just at the high level conference Last week and and archangel a couple weeks ago, that's art. That's my canvas. The stage is my canvas. I'm an artist. And if I'm taking care of myself and I'm doing the right things for myself, and I'm lowering noise in my life. I might come in and in 10 minutes, have this massive download and break Drew that changes everything. That happened when I was in Canada for the archangel presentation.

Alex Charfen [00:38:53]:

I didn't know what I was gonna say until, like, an hour and a half before I went on stage, and it just All came to me, and I trusted that it would. And, I was in an event where I was one of the only speakers to get a standing ovation. The reason that 15 minutes was there, the reason that window for the download was there was everything else that I'm doing. So I could exchange Having that insight, that intuition, that connection to source that happens when I'm really taking care of myself for 14 hour days, but I've done it before, and I can tell you it just doesn't work. And so as artists, as creators, the more we take care of ourselves, the more creative we will be. The more we lower the pressure and noise in our lives, the more possibility we see. And as entrepreneurs, the more that we are embodied and present and aware, the more we actually create the future we want and don't just Call off and do something that in the present becomes heavy and challenging and frustrating.

Bryan McAnulty [00:39:49]:

Yeah. I love that. So I I believe that. I understand that, but the way you just said it just helped me make a a real new realization for myself that I hadn't, which is that I'm a musician as a hobby and I've I've played in bands in, like, high school. I was in the band and things like that. And If you look at musicians, typically, they have the the process that they write the songs, and they go on tour, and then they repeat that cycle. And there's marketing reasons behind all that as well. But when you have to go and and be in that mode of creating and and writing those songs, It's a completely different thing from, like, the performance part, and you have to be able to to set yourself up in this position where your The thoughts and everything are are flowing in the right way for you to be creative and and create that new piece of music that no one's ever heard before.

Bryan McAnulty [00:40:43]:

And so I think musicians actually they understand that, like, innately already, but entrepreneurs were kinda lose sight of that. And Yeah. I think you described it really, really well.

Alex Charfen [00:40:52]:

Yeah. It's interesting. I have a lot of friends that are musicians, actually, and entrepreneurs. I have a lot of friends that are artists and entrepreneurs. And You know what does not ever work for art or music is a whole shit ton of pressure. Like, if you're if you are standing next an artist or a musician, you're like, okay. You gotta finish in the next 5 minutes.

Bryan McAnulty [00:41:14]:

Make this on now. Yeah.

Alex Charfen [00:41:16]:

Yeah. That is not the process through which Genius comes out, but it's interesting because so often, I have friends that are artists or musicians and entrepreneurs. And over here, They pile Mount Everest on their backs and then try and climb up another Mount Everest. And over here, they're like, oh, if I have time and space, I'll write a song. Well, if we took some more of that energy and we put it into the business, and when we do that, everything in the business changes.

Bryan McAnulty [00:41:43]:

Yeah. Yeah. That's great. Alright. Well, Alex, I got 1 more question for you, and that is that on the show, I like to have every guest ask a question to the audience. So if you could ask our audience anything, whether it's something you're curious about, something you wanna get everybody thinking about, what would that be?

Alex Charfen [00:42:01]:

So you warned me this question was coming, and I think what's come up for me as we've had this conversation, Brian, is that If you're listening to this podcast and you're an entrepreneur, I want you to ask yourself, what would I do if I didn't have to do anything? What would I what would I do? What am I passionate about enough that if I didn't have to do anything and all my needs were taken care of, I would go do that thing? And if you had asked me this question when I was a younger entrepreneur, I just wanna qualify this. If you told me this in my twenties, I would have thought you were completely full of crap. And I would have gotten right back to the grind and right back to what I was doing and and posted the numbers and made the sales. But over the course of a 30 year career, here's what I know. The times where I have had the highest numbers, the bag the biggest success, the Highest profitability, the biggest income, the biggest impact, the most fun, and the most engagement for me has been when I was doing something that I would have done Anyway, because I was that passionate about it. And, you know, I've I've I've shared this before, not in a lot of places, but I've shared this before, and I've had people say stuff like, well Well, Alex, what if I just wanna go play ping pong? I'm like, okay. We'll go play ping pong. Like, you know, it's kind of a a funny, like, joke, but There's I actually know an entrepreneur that was ridiculously into ping pong, figured out a way to make, like, a coffee table ping pong thing that That and ended up making 100 of 1,000 of dollars with it.

Alex Charfen [00:43:23]:

So, like, whatever it is, find something that you would be doing anyway. And I'm not saying give up the rest of the world, But ask yourself that question. And I think the questions that we don't ask ourselves enough are what I what would I be doing anyway? How do I make this easier and more fun for myself? How do I make this feel timeless and effortless? Those are big questions. The answers might not come immediately, and There is enough out there that's gonna have you asking questions in the other direction. Just consider those for yourself because if you can align Those questions with what your business is doing and you can put yourself in that place of actually doing what you want, everything in your life will align and your business This will grow like crazy, and the world needs you to because when you align your business, that's when you make a massive impact and change people's lives.

Bryan McAnulty [00:44:12]:

Awesome. Alright. Well, Alex, before we get going, where else can people find you online?

Alex Charfen [00:44:17]:

The best place to go is if you're a podcast listener. I have a podcast called Momentum for the Entrepreneurial Personality Type. We're, grateful to be in the top half percent of podcasts worldwide and top fraction of a percent of business podcasts. You can go I I I have it on my website at momentum podcast, or you can look anywhere that that podcasts are downloaded. And then right now, probably for the next few weeks, We have, a completely free copy of my book available, the electronic copy. If you wanna buy the hard copy for a souvenir, you can. You can go to freeeptbook.com, so, like, free entrepreneurial personality type book .com, and download a copy absolutely free. I'd love to know what you think if you end up doing

Bryan McAnulty [00:44:59]:

Awesome. Sounds great. I will I'm gonna go and do that right now. I have not read that that yet, so, I'm gonna take advantage of that. Alright, Alex. Thanks so much.

Alex Charfen [00:45:08]:

Thank you, Brian. I really enjoyed our conversation and your perspective. I appreciate you. Thanks.

Bryan McAnulty [00:45:13]:

I'd like to take a moment to invite you to join our free community of over 5,000 creators at creatorclimb.com. If you enjoyed this episode and wanna hear more, Check out the Heights platform YouTube channel every Tuesday at 9 AM US central. To get notified when new episodes release, join our newsletter at the The creator's adventure.com. Until then, keep learning, and I'll see you in the next episode.

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About the Host

Bryan McAnulty is the founder of Heights Platform: all-in-one online course creation software that allows creators to monetize their knowledge.

His entrepreneurial journey began in 2009, when he founded Velora, a digital product design studio, developing products and websites used by millions worldwide. Stemming from an early obsession with Legos and graphic design programs, Bryan is a designer, developer, musician, and truly a creator at heart. With a passion for discovery, Bryan has traveled to more than 30 countries and 100+ cities meeting creators along the way.

As the founder of Heights Platform, Bryan is in constant contact with creators from all over the world and has learned to recognize their unique needs and goals.

Creating a business from scratch as a solopreneur is not an easy task, and it can feel quite lonely without appropriate support and mentorship.

The show The Creator’s Adventure was born to address this need: to build an online community of creative minds and assist new entrepreneurs with strategies to create a successful online business from their passions.

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