In today’s episode, S&J talk about 2018, the good, the bad, and the future.
Jocelyn Sams: Hey, y’all. On today’s podcast, we recap 2018, the good, the bad, and the future.
Shane Sams: Welcome to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast, where life always comes before work. We’re your hosts, Shane and Jocelyn Sams. We’re a real family that figured out how to make our entire living online. Now, we help other families do the same. Are you ready to flip your life? All right, let’s get started.
Shane Sams: What’s going on everybody? Welcome back to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast and happy new year on this January 1st edition of the Flipped Lifestyle podcast. Jocelyn and Shane here, all by ourselves today. We do not have a guest for this episode of the Flipped Lifestyle podcast. This is just a solo show with me and Jocelyn, and we wanted to recap 2018 and start looking toward 2019. We’re going to talk about all the things that happened last year to us, the good, the bad, and then we’re going to transition a little bit to talk about the future for the Flipped Lifestyle podcast and the Flip Your Life community.
Jocelyn Sams: We don’t really have much of a plan for this podcast, to be perfectly honest. We just sort of opened up a Google Drive document and did a brain dump of all of our thoughts, so who knows what this is going to turn out like. It’s just something we felt like kind of talking through and just sharing with you guys as we think back on the past 365 days and also to the future.
Shane Sams: The reason we’re doing this is, one, we really want to stress the importance to everyone who listens to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast of reflection and looking back on what you did right, what you did wrong, and bringing that all together to make good decisions going forward in the future, and also to let you guys know that a lot of things do go good in our business, a lot of things go good for our family, but we’ve had a lot of bad things happen, too. Sometimes, we don’t get the chance to really talk about that a lot on the podcast because it’s so focused on helping the Flip Your Life community and all the people in it succeed. We don’t get to really show you that part of our journey. If you follow us on social media, you do get to see a little bit of that, but we want to let you know that things are not always perfect for us. Jocelyn and I are just like you. We’re normal people, we’re married, we have kids, and we have all the stresses that go along with life, just like you do.
Shane Sams: We wanted to just share some of that and let you know that you’re not alone when you struggle on this journey. Every day we get up, there are things that go good, there are things that go bad, and we have to react to all those things. We wanted to share some of that with you guys in this episode and let you know how that goes.
Shane Sams: All right. We decided to start with the good. We looked back and wrote down all of the highlights that happened over the last year, and there were quite a few of them. It’s really important to latch onto those. Every Sunday, when Jocelyn and I journal together, we actually … The first thing we do is write down 10 good things that happened in the week prior because we want to start off anything we’re doing, planning with a good frame of mind, and to let ourselves know, “Hey, don’t focus on the negative things.” There are a lot of great things. There’s usually more good things than bad things, so we wanted to start this podcast off that way.
Shane Sams: The most recent good thing that happened to us actually happened yesterday. Jocelyn and I were taking Anna Jo to cheerleading practice together. Isaac was staying at his grandparents’ house, he was chilling out over there and didn’t want to drive and sit in the car with us. We took the time to go grab something to eat, drop her off, do a little cheerleading, and hang out, and we got a message from a Flip Your Life community member. This is the first message of this type that I’ve actually gotten directly from a member. We kind of know some stories of some other people that have done some great things, but this was the first time a member had ever reached out to us and said, “Hey, guys. I just wanted to let you know that my husband and I have went over the million dollar mark in our online business since we joined the community.”
Shane Sams: This was the first time a Flip Your Life community member had literally wrote us and said, “Thank you guys. You helped us make a million dollars.” It was really overwhelming in the car. We couldn’t even comprehend that. It’s one thing for you to hear about somebody online making a million dollars, because we all … If you were working, making $40,000 a year, it would take you dozens of years to actually get to the point where you actually had made a million dollars in your lifetime. Then, when you start an online business and you make a million dollars yourself, it blows your mind because it’s just almost a number that you can’t even comprehend until you see it actually happen. Then, for someone to write in and say, “You helped us make a million dollars,” that’s life-changing. We can’t wait to see what the future brings.
Shane Sams: It was really just mind-blowing. We didn’t even really know how to respond to it in the moment.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. The cool thing is that these people actually live kind of close to us, so we’re actually going to go hang out with them and celebrate this, which is really cool. Yeah.
Shane Sams: If you ever make a million dollars, let us know. And contribute it to the Flip Your Life community, we might fly in and have lunch with you, but you’re paying because you made a million dollars. I’m just saying. I’m not paying for that one.
Jocelyn Sams: Oh, goodness. Yes. That … It was just so cool. I don’t even really know what to say about that. I’m just kind of at a loss for words when I think about the impact that our community has had. It’s just really cool.
Shane Sams: A million dollars is a lot of money, and it makes me think back a little bit, Jocelyn, to last year when we were selling one of our businesses. In 2017 … What month was that? Was it August that we sold elementarylibrarian.com?
Jocelyn Sams: I think it was July, actually.
Shane Sams: It was July. In July of 2017, we sold elementarylibrarian.com. It was our first big business that really took off and was really successful. We did that. It was over a million dollar contract. I remember thinking about that number, that million dollar number. Here it was. In one day, you sign a contract and someone deposits a ton of money in your account. The reason we did that wasn’t just to make the money. That business was very passive. It made a ton of money. We could have just kept it and kept it going. The reason we sold that was because we wanted to go all in on Flipped Lifestyle, all in, changing people’s lives, helping other families do what we did, replace your income, quit your job, work from home, have the freedom to make choices in your life.
Shane Sams: When someone writes you in and says, “Hey, I started my business,” or, “Hey, I quit my job,” or when they write us in and they say something crazy like, “Guys, you helped us get to a million dollars. You helped us experience a million dollar moment, and you helped us not just change our future or our family’s future, but make a generational change. We’re going to be able to go out and build something that might leave an inheritance to our children’s children.” That’s really overwhelming, and it’s also really fulfilling for us to know that we made the right decision.
Shane Sams: When we sold this passive income cash cow that was kind of our safety net for a while and really made us feel comfortable about what we were doing, but we said, “No, we’re going all in on Flipped Lifestyle,” and a year and a half later, someone writes you in and says, “We just went over the million dollar mark,” it’s just really inspiring, and it really keeps us motivated and pumped up to keep going and keep helping more people. We may not help everybody get to a million dollars, but if we could help everybody start something that would give them margin in their life, make their life easier, then going all in for Flipped Lifestyle was really, really worth it.
Shane Sams: Also, on a personal note, one of the things that Jocelyn and I discussed was would we even be able to replace the income from elementarylibrarian.com if we sold it. It’s really hard to build one business to six figures or seven figures or to sustain you and your family and be able to create an income. Could we do it again and again and again, and especially could we do it with Flipped Lifestyle because there’s so much competition, there’s so many gurus out there that are just dominating the landscape and spending all this ad money and doing all these things. A year and a half after we basically went all in on Flipped Lifestyle, we’ve tripled revenue, almost 2,000 people have joined the Flip Your Life community, and it looks like there might be no end in sight to how far we can take this thing and how big we can make this brand and how many people we can actually impact.
Shane Sams: We’re seeing so many more people join from all over the world. We just recorded a podcast this morning with a Flip Your Life community member in Saudi Arabia. To even think about that a year and a half ago or two years ago or five years ago is just absolutely mind-blowing. It was really good to see, at the end of 2018, all those risks that we took in 2017 really started to pay off.
Jocelyn Sams: Another thing that we did in 2018 is we decided to host our first major live event. We did that just a few months ago. It was a little bit crazy. If you listen to our podcast about post live event, if you listen to that one, we had a lot of crazy things happen. We questioned it a lot. Was this the right decision? I think that, at the end of the day, we decided that we were really, really happy we did the live event.
Shane Sams: Yeah. It basically consumed our life from the day we decided to release it, which was …
Jocelyn Sams: January, I think.
Shane Sams: Of 2018.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah.
Shane Sams: Yeah. In January, we announced it. We almost sold it out in the first week. That was really good that we actually sold out, because we were like, “We’re going to announce this an 10 people are going to come and we’re going to be on hook for all this stuff, these contracts that we were signing up for with hotels and venues and all this stuff.
Shane Sams: To see what happened at the live event, to see all the progress that the attendees made coming into the live event. We did these ice breaker sessions where we had 40 or 50 people who were coming to the live event on and we talked to every single one of them. We saw so many people launch products leading up to the live event, get their business, make their first sales. We had one member that changed her membership pricing model right before the event after a coaching call and she made $17,000 in recurring revenue in one thing. Then, after the event, seeing members take action. We had another member that’s added 200 members at $39 a month in just two and a half months since the live event based on what the plan she made there.
Shane Sams: The live event was a catalyst moment for us to realize how important community is to everybody’s journey. To see 100 people fly in from five countries, 30 different states, just to see us, because we were the only show. We did all eight sessions, we led the panels, we stayed up all night with everybody working at the work session on the first night to get their plans ready and helped as many people as we could get around to. Just to see that community really come together live is just a different feeling than in a forum setting or anything else. To see how close the Flip Your Life community is, and, really, it made us proud of the culture that we’ve really built in this brand and how we’re bringing together family-focused entrepreneurs to a point where they would actually get on an airplane and fly to Nashville, Tennessee, not only just to see us but to see each other and to make progress in their business, was absolutely mind-blowing.
Jocelyn Sams: There are so many people, even after the event, who have gotten together. They’re in masterminds together, they’re working together, they’re talking on Voxer, they’re meeting once a week. Just to see all that and know that it came from something that we started, we knocked over the first domino and they’ve kind of taken care of the rest, it’s just really cool to see. I’ve talked to so many people that are like, “Thank you so much for doing this event. I’m making progress in my business that I never would have made otherwise.” That just made it all worth it. It was a lot of work and it was a lot of just, I guess … I don’t know if I want to say heartache, but just a lot of …
Shane Sams: I think there was definitely some heartache involved in that because it was a rough deal.
Jocelyn Sams: It was a labor of love for sure. I think that, at the end of the day, we can say that we’re really glad that we did that.
Shane Sams: What one … I’m trying to speak at an event and one of the topics that I want to talk about is how online business can not only change your life and the individual’s life but really communities. It can change world communities. Anywhere you are, if you have internet access, you can reach out and touch the whole world. I don’t think people realize that. Flip Your Life Live was kind of the exclamation point on the end of our sentence that said, “Hey, this is real. You’re two people in rural Appalachia, southeast Kentucky, where you have really slow internet, you don’t have all the resources that some people have in California or on the coasts or in big cities. Basically, you can just get online. You can say something into a microphone, record it, and get it out there, and you can influence people all over the world. You can help people from anywhere. That’s just never been possible before, and it is possible now.
Shane Sams: We kind of, after the live event, we realized how much of a … What would you say, responsibility it is to actually do that, not just for us and the Flip Your Life community, but for you. You’re listening to this, which means you’re somewhere out there in the world with an internet connection where you could download this. If you could download this podcast, you could upload you’re own, or you could upload your own course, or you could connect over Skype and be a virtual assistant, or you could download an audio file and transcribe it and make money and help make someone else’s life easier. The live event, being in person and seeing how much influence we were having really made us realize this is the craziest time in human history. If you’re not taking advantage of it, it’s your fault. You’ve got to get out there and do something, and we’ve got to do more with the platform that we’ve built and the responsibility that we’ve been given.
Jocelyn Sams: Lots of people have asked us about the live event, will you be doing one in 2019, and we are going to do one in 2019, which is actually now. The dates for that, this is the first time we’ve announced that, is going to … We will have a party on Thursday night, September 19th, and we will have content on Friday and Saturday, the 20th and 21st of September, 2019. Definitely go ahead and get that in your calendar if this is something you’re interested in attending. We would love to have you there. We are making plans to have even more people being able to be in attendance this year and we cannot wait.
Shane Sams: We have chosen a city for the live event this year, as well. It is going to be in Lexington, Kentucky. We really wanted to bring this event to Kentucky. Kentucky is an amazing place, especially Lexington, Kentucky, to have events like this. It’s within driving distance to millions of people, so, for those of you who can’t make the flight, you can jump in your car and you can be there in just a few hours. They also have an amazing airport that you can fly right in. There’s two other airports in the region, Louisville and the Northern Kentucky/Cincinnati Airport.
Shane Sams: It’s a super easy city to get to. It is by far one of the most beautiful cities in the South, and it’s kind of our second home. Lexington, Kentucky, is where Jocelyn and I met, so that’s kind of where it all started, so we’re taking it back to the place where all of this actually began. It’ll be in Lexington, Kentucky, and it was the 19th through the 21st, is that what you said?
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah.
Shane Sams: It’ll be the 19th through the 21st. We would love to have you guys there. All you have to do is go to flippedlifestyle.com/live, F-L-I-P-P-E-D lifestyle.com/live, L-I-V-E. Go to flippedlifestyle.com/live right now. There is a waiting list up as of today.
Jocelyn Sams: But, depending on when you’re listening to this, it …
Shane Sams: Tickets could be on sale.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah.
Shane Sams: Yeah.
Jocelyn Sams: Definitely grab one if you’re interested in coming. There is a very big chance we could sell out again. We sold out last year very unexpectedly.
Shane Sams: The waiting list is bigger now already than it was when we launched last year. In our surveys, 85% of people, I think, said they are coming back, so those tickets will go fast. We are going to add a few more tickets this year. We don’t know the exact numbers yet. We have to meet, I think this week, with the venue to find out the final totals that we can fit in the room. Then, we will be launching that very soon.
Shane Sams: Another big highlight for us this year was the 200th episode of our podcast.
Jocelyn Sams: 200.
Shane Sams: We have been doing this for a long time now, years and years. The podcast has been our primary means of building our audience, building traffic, growing our community. It’s just really the heart and soul of every single thing that we do, is the Flipped Lifestyle podcast. To hit 200 episodes … I read … The other day, there was an article I was reading that was about podcasting. The vast majority, like 90% of all podcasts that have ever been released on iTunes, it said flame out between 20 and 30 episodes. 90% of podcasts that people launch flame out because they give up, they get tired of it, they get bored with it. It’s called pod-fading is what it’s called. The podcasts just kind of start and then they fade out.
Jocelyn Sams: I like how we just invent words now. What is that called, Urban Dictionary or whatever?
Shane Sams: Yeah. I didn’t even know that word and we’ve been doing this … How long have we been podcasting now, five years at least?
Jocelyn Sams: Four years? Five years?
Shane Sams: Six years?
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah, I don’t know.
Shane Sams: Well, we had our other podcast, we had our librarian.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah, like five years.
Shane Sams: Yeah. We’ve been podcasting pretty much since podcasting got big and I had never heard this word until probably 48 hours ago. It was called pod-fading. To think that we made it this long and we make our full-time living podcasting now, basically, and we hit 200 episodes, and we’re getting close to 300. We’re getting very close to 300 now because we’ve started going to two podcasts a week. That was just a really proud moment for us, that we hung in there, we stuck it out, and the end is nowhere in sight. We’re just going to keep going with this because podcasting is the best way that we can get our message out to as many people as possible.
Shane Sams: Also, to realize that so many people have found us, not only through our podcast but going into other people’s podcast, telling our story. That’s how one of our favorite members, Jeanette Stein, found us. We mention Jeanette a lot because she’s such an inspiring person in her own right. We’ve seen what she’s accomplished. She came into our community, she was making almost no money online, literally pennies, and I think within about three or four months of joining the community, she had built a membership community of her own and quit her job. She has an amazing story. It’s awesome to see how just her finding our podcast changed her life.
Shane Sams: Then, we saw the ripple effect of what putting your message out there, making content, can actually do. Jeanette sent us a message this year. It was the picture of a little baby girl named Caitlin from the Philippines. We sent her a message back, we were like, “What is this?”
Jocelyn Sams: “Why are you sending us a picture of this baby? I don’t know this baby.”
Shane Sams: We’re just … “I don’t know this baby. This is a random baby. Why are you sending this?” Then, she sends us a screenshot from a conversation that she was having with her virtual assistant who lived in the Philippines. Her assistants name was John and it said, “Ma’am Jeannette,” because that’s how anybody from another country always says mister or miss or sir or madame or ma’am before your name.
Shane Sams: They say, “Ma’am Jeanette. We just wanted to thank you for helping us bring baby Caitlin into the world. You see, before we met you, we couldn’t afford health insurance. We had tried to have kids before and two of our babies died because we didn’t have health insurance and we couldn’t get them the medical care they needed. We couldn’t get the medical care we needed. Because you hired us, we got health insurance and we were able to go to the hospital and baby Caitlin was able to be healthy and be born and come home with us. We just wanted to thank you for that.”
Shane Sams: I’ll never forget the message that Jeanette sent to us after she showed us this picture and she showed us the screen capture. She said, “You helped me so I could help them.” That really brought it home to … It’s not just about the money, it’s not just about the entrepreneurship, it’s not just about growing the business. Those are all important things. We should think about those things, we should try to make more profits, we should try to grow revenue, but everything we do is kind of like throwing a pebble in the pond. When that ripple goes out and hits someone else, they get to pick up their pebble and throw it farther than you could ever throw it by yourself, and they get to hit somebody else with their ripple. It just keeps going and going and going.
Shane Sams: To think that two people from Kentucky started a business that helped someone else start a business that allowed them to hire someone else on the other side of the world that allowed a baby to be born is just really, really overwhelming. That was really one of my proudest moments in 2018, is just knowing that something like that could even happen if you just take action. If you just actually make the first move and you pick up your pebble and you throw it in the pond, the ripple can go out. Until you do that, nothing happens. It’s just a reminder for us to keep taking action. We have no idea what good could be done in the future with our business unless we keep taking action, keep trying, keep doing all those other little things that grow the business to allow moments like that to happen. That was really just one of the highlights for us, is to learn that our podcast had done something like that.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. It was just … It was very overwhelming. When I realized what she was trying to say after she sent me the picture and I’m like, “Okay, who is this? I’m a little bit confused,” and she explains it all to me, those of you who know me personally know that I’m not much of a crier but I might have cried a little on that one. That was just a really cool and just unexpected thing that we just never could have anticipated when we started this podcast.
Shane Sams: With that being said, we hear all the stories in our Flip Your Life community, we get a lot of messages from you guys, we see all these messages all the time, but we know that there’s a lot of stories out there that we haven’t heard. We would love to hear your story, as well. If you have an amazing story from our podcast that you took action and you did something, we have people that write us all the time and say, “Just from listening to your podcast, I got my business started and I’m making my side hustle work and I’ve got money coming in and I’m getting ready to take it to the next level,” or, “This amazing thing happened,” like with baby Caitlin, “just from going through your thing.”
Shane Sams: Those messages really drive us to keep going, to keep bringing you this kind of value and this kind of information every single week on our podcast. It’s really the fuel for our fire. We would love to hear your story, so, if you have not told us your story, the best place for you to do that is over on iTunes. It’s the easiest place for you to go in, you can tell us how the Flipped Lifestyle podcast is impacting you, your life, your business. All you gotta do is click “write a review,” leave us that five star review, and tell us your story. Write in there a paragraph or two about how this podcast, this community, how me and Jocelyn or anybody in it has changed your life or is making your life aim in a different direction and how you’re making progress toward your goals. We would love to hear those stories from you guys. All you have to do is go to iTunes and type in the Flipped Lifestyle podcast and you’ll find us. Click on it and leave us a review.
Jocelyn Sams: I also learned something recently. You can tell Siri, if you’re on an Apple product, “Siri, follow or subscribe to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast,” and that will actually work. I didn’t realize that until just recently.
Shane Sams: They can just click the button and say, “Siri, follow …” What is that? “Siri, subscribe to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast.”
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. Apparently that works. I don’t know. I heard this on another podcast.
Jocelyn Sams: One thing I wanted to say about podcasting while we’re on the subject is that I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts lately. It’s something that I really didn’t do for a long time, but I’ve kind of gotten into it recently. We are one of the few podcasts … I don’t know that I’ve heard a single other one that is not supported by ads or by something. We bring this content to you guys two times a week with no ad support. We are just doing this …
Shane Sams: We don’t even do affiliate launches, nothing. We are … You support us, not only with your encouragement but, in the Flip Your Life community, we are 100% dedicated to you. It’s crazy.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. I think it’s kind of crazy that we’ve made it this long, we’ve it 200 something episodes without doing sponsorships. We never say never. I’m not going to say that we are never going to do anything like that. I don’t know what the future holds. What I’m trying to say is, if you can’t join our community, if you don’t have the money for it right now, we get it.
Shane Sams: We’ve been there.
Jocelyn Sams: The one thing that you can do, though, is go onto iTunes and leave us a review and let people know what this podcast means to you. Let us know what the podcast means to you. It just really helps us keep going in times that it’s hard to keep going.
Shane Sams: Yeah. Tell other people about it. If you know other people that are into this kind of thing, let them know that we’re here every week, twice a week, one on one helping real people change their lives and helping you change your life and helping you change your family’s future, and we can help them, too. Whatever you can do, we’ll keep coming to you guys. We really appreciate all those reviews, they really keep us going.
Jocelyn Sams: All right. That was kind of some of the business highlights of 2018 for us. We also had some personal highlights that we kind of wanted to go through. We are not typically very good at kind of patting ourselves on the back or really celebrating anything. We’re just very ambitious people and we’re always kind of looking to the next thing, but we wanted to look back and kind of pull out some good personal memories.
Jocelyn Sams: I would say first of all, for me, 2018 was a lot better than 2017 as far as my mental state. At the end of 2017, I had a really rough year. We sold the business and it’s the business that I pretty much built from the ground up almost by myself. It was almost like a death. You kind of go through those phases of grief. It was really happy because it was a great website …
Shane Sams: The business had lived a good life. It was like the celebration at the funeral. It was like … Then it just went post depression, basically.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. I had to deal with some people along the way with the sale and they were a little bit difficult. It was just kind of a bad end of the year for me. I won’t say bad but it was just a challenging end of the year.
Shane Sams: You underestimate it. I’m going to call you out a little bit here because Jocelyn was in such bad mental state after the sale, and really there was a really, really rough person to deal with. They were heart … They were just not nice. Jocelyn usually avoids those people at all possible but she had to deal with this person in the company. Physical manifestations started coming. Jocelyn’s neck and stuff got so stiff that she would have to … It would almost twist her head to the side because the stress of the sale and dealing with that person and everything was so bad.
Jocelyn Sams: I went to chiropractors, I went to physical therapists, I went to get dry-needling, which is sort of like acupuncture.
Shane Sams: You got counseling.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah, I went to a counselor. I did all of these different things to try to make this physical pain stop and, really, the only thing that helped me, honestly, was I started doing some meditation, which sounds a little crazy and something like I would never do, but that was the one thing that sort of got me out of this just terrible physical shape. I didn’t really realize how much stress could manifest in physical problems but I really experienced that firsthand in 2017.
Jocelyn Sams: I’m just so thankful that I didn’t have to deal with that quite to that extent in 2018, which was really, really awesome.
Shane Sams: Another great thing that we did probably for the first time in our entrepreneurial journey is we kind of crossed a line this year where we felt like we had surrounded ourselves with really good people. They always say you are the average of the five people you talk to and hang out with the most. It took us four or five years to really network and meet and find the right group of people that we could surround ourselves with where we knew they were all going forward. They were not perfect people, they made mistakes, they weren’t the top achievers financially or whatever, but it was like they were all dedicated to moving their business, their marriage, their kids forward in a really good way, spiritually, mentally, financially, everything.
Shane Sams: I fell in with a group of guys who I really talk to almost every single day now. We take a trip every year together, go out on his houseboat. I’m just really thankful that God kind of put these men in my path and helped me see other high achievers, but also see that their life wasn’t perfect, and to be transparent enough with each other to be like, “Gosh, man. Today was a rough day with the kids,” or, “Not getting along with the old wife over here sometimes,” which happens sometimes.
Jocelyn Sams: What?
Shane Sams: Just to talk about real things with real people and know you’re not alone, and to be able to actually trust a group of people in that way, too.
Shane Sams: Jocelyn kind of fell in with a group of ladies, too, doing the same thing. They take a trip every year, as well. I think you have a trip in March, don’t you?
Jocelyn Sams: Yes. I went in March of 2018 to Cancun with a group of ladies. It’s something that I had envisioned a while back, actually back in 2016, 2017. I tried to get a group together. It just didn’t work out at that time. I happened to go to a conference in late 2017 last year and I met a couple of people there and we just sort of started talking. It turns out that one of them had the same idea, so me being the action-taker that I am, I talked to my travel agent. I’m like, “Look, I need you to help me get this trip together. Let’s make this happen,” and we did. I meet up with two ladies from Texas, one from Oregon, and one from Kansas. We all got together in Cancun last year, and then we are getting together again this year, which is really, really cool.
Jocelyn Sams: In 2018, we spent several days on the beach. We went to an all-inclusive. We did every mom’s dream, which is to lay on the beach and chat with other ladies while people bring you food and drinks on the beach.
Shane Sams: And your awesome husband was back home with the kids.
Jocelyn Sams: Yes.
Jocelyn Sams: There’s no one saying, “Mom, I need this,” or, “Mom, take me here,” or, “Where’s my whatever?” Those words were not said during that time, which was so amazing. We went to the spa, we spent time on the beach, we laid in the pool. We pretty much did nothing on a beautiful Cancun, Mexico, beach and I cannot wait to do it again in about 90 days.
Shane Sams: 2018, other than those trips we took with our mastermind groups, was really a good year for us relaxing and entertainment-wise. We got to take the trip of a lifetime to Jamaica. We took the kids to Jamaica after our live event to really just take a week to unwind. We got to go with one of our dear friends, Kat, who many of you know from the Flip Your Life community, and her husband AJ. They had their little baby there. Our kids got to play with their little baby on the beach. We swam with dolphins and we went to this amazing school in Jamaica with all these little kids to let our kids kind of see a school in another country. We just really won a trip that would have never, ever, ever been possible without our online business. If we had been in our old life and our old jobs, making the money we were making, we probably could save up for that trip over a 10-year period.
Shane Sams: That was amazing. We got to take a lot of awesome trips to all of our kids’ activities. Isaac plays basketball on a travel team and Anna does travel cheer, so got to see a lot of cool places through that. We bought a new car, only our second car ever.
Jocelyn Sams: Our second new car ever.
Shane Sams: New car ever.
Jocelyn Sams: Brand new.
Shane Sams: Right. By far one of the craziest purchases we’ve ever made but we’ve drove that around, we’ve wrecked it once, got it fixed. Still driving that. Got a lot of cool travel going on. Right now today, while you’re listening to this, we are going to be at the University of Kentucky football bowl game versus Penn State, which is our first New Year’s Day bowl game in 20 years. We’re huge Kentucky fans. This is actually the best football season of my lifetime and I am a longtime Kentucky faithful football fan, so it’s pretty amazing what we’re doing today.
Shane Sams: Just had some amazing experiences. We bought jet skis for our lake. We have a little private lake behind our house. I don’t know if there was a day this summer we didn’t get on those jet skis and pull the kids on the tubes.
Jocelyn Sams: We had people over constantly.
Shane Sams: All the time.
Jocelyn Sams: This was party central this summer.
Shane Sams: We really didn’t get to enjoy our house last year because …
Jocelyn Sams: We were building decks.
Shane Sams: We were building decks and docks. It was a construction zone.
Shane Sams: We just really got to actually enjoy life, maybe kind of for the first time since we actually quit our jobs. We’ve done a lot of cool things, don’t get me wrong, but this was kind of the first year we felt totally in control of everything.
Jocelyn Sams: Nothing was being decorated. The house was finished being decorated, the construction was finished, everything was finished and we were actually able to live in our house, which was a really nice feeling.
Shane Sams: It was like the spoils of the last five years. We’ve worked so hard to build this new life for ourselves. It finally hit. That kind of touches back on it takes a long time to be an overnight success, but then it even takes a long time to enjoy the success that you’ve earned. It took us 13 months to really get to a point where we could even think about the decision to quit our jobs. It took probably another year almost from that before we really felt secure, not stressed about the whole thing was going to collapse. Then, it took us probably another two years to wrap our brain around what was possible, because what we do now is … I don’t even think I could get in a time machine and go back and explain it to myself five years ago, where we’ve ended up at.
Shane Sams: When you’re on this journey and you’re looking to the future and you’ve got these big goals, be ready. Everything is a learning experience. It’s like they always say those … When someone wins the lottery, they spend all their money in a month and they end up right back where they were. You have to wrap your brain around what’s possible and wrap your brain around what you’ve accomplished, and wrap your brain around how to even enjoy it, and then you finally get to a point where you can settle in and say, “This is the new normal.” We kind of reached that point in 2018, so that was pretty cool.
Jocelyn Sams: One thing I wanted to throw in was an exercise goal that I set for myself. I know this is kind of random, but …
Shane Sams: Jocelyn actually kept a New Year’s resolution, y’all. This is amazing.
Jocelyn Sams: I did. I normally don’t do New Year’s resolutions, I’m just not that kind of person, but I was kind of really frustrated with myself in 2017 because I didn’t really work out the way that I would like to work out. We were really sick. Shane and I got very sick in the end of 2017 last year. We had the flu. I then got a …
Shane Sams: I had pneumonia.
Jocelyn Sams: I got a sinus infection. It was just yucky for a whole month. I go back on my Apple Watch, I have an Apple Watch and I’m obsessed with the activity app. I go back and look at last year and I’m just like, “Oh, my goodness,” because I think I worked out maybe three or four days in all of November and December last year. At the end of the year, I was just really, really frustrated with myself and I was like, “You know what? I’m going to set a crazy goal. I’m going to say that I’m going to work out 300 out of 365 days in 2018.”
Jocelyn Sams: I really didn’t realize what a crazy goal it was until I went back and counted my days for 2017. I’m embarrassed to say that, in 2017, I worked out just over 100 days. In 2018, I decided, “Okay, I’m going to work out 300 out of 365,” which, when you think about it, there are probably some of you guys listening being like, “Oh, gosh, that’s such a lame goal. I can easily do that.” For me, that was a huge stretch. That’s three times what I did in 2017. Most people would look at it and say, “There’s no way this can be done,” but I’m happy to say that I did it. Not only did I do it, I beat the goal. I said I was going to work out 300 days. I ended up working out 305 or 306 days.
Shane Sams: Wow.
Jocelyn Sams: I define working out by the activity ring on my Apple Watch. If you don’t have an Apple Watch and you want to be more, I guess …
Shane Sams: Aware.
Jocelyn Sams: Aware of your physical activity, it is a great way to do it. It really, really motivates me.
Shane Sams: Especially when you tag it with your friends and they can … They finish their workout and it sends you a notification and you’re like, “Curses. I was going to take today off but now I can’t because someone just did her work.”
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. We share activity with several different people and, yeah, it’s very, very motivating. I just wanted to throw that out there, that, if you’re thinking about doing something, whether it’s starting a business, whether it’s working out more, whether it is spending more time with your family, whatever it is, set yourself a big goal and don’t be afraid of it. I could have just said, “Oh, well, I’ll work out 150 days.” Well, yeah, that would have been easy. I decided to make it something really challenging, and there were days during this year that I really didn’t want to work out, but I was …
Shane Sams: There were also days when you had one minute to go on your activity and Jocelyn would come running through the living room and she would do laps around the bar in the kitchen, and then she would just stop and start doing jumping jacks and the dogs would freak out because they thought it was playtime. I’m like, “What are you doing?” She goes, “I got 30 more seconds. It’s 9:00 p.m.” and she would knock it out.
Jocelyn Sams: Yeah. I did some crazy stuff this year but, overall, it was really good.
Jocelyn Sams: Another thing that I did, on a personal note, is I really started trying to watch my eating in April of 2018. We started doing a ketogenic diet in April. We did really well on that through about July, and things got a little bit stressful, which we are going to talk about much more later, but I had … I’d say I probably had about six months of pretty good healthy eating and about six months of not.
Shane Sams: That wasn’t your goal. The goal was fitness last year. Now you can focus totally on nutrition.
Jocelyn Sams: Yes. During that time, though, I was really proud to say that I did lose 17 pounds. I have not maintained that. We’ll talk about that more later. I did lose 17 pounds, which was really awesome.
Shane Sams: Which shows it’s possible.
Jocelyn Sams: That was one of the goals that I had. I just want to encourage you, if you’re listening to this, set yourself big goals. Don’t be afraid of it. Worse case, if you don’t work out 300 days, well, what if you worked out 250 days? That’s still better than 100 that I did in 2017. Set yourself a big goal and don’t be afraid of it.
Shane Sams: The last of the good things that we’re really going to talk about today is homeschool. Jocelyn and I probably started having this conversation maybe at the end of 2017, early 2018. What would our life look like if we homeschooled? Jocelyn and I have kind of freed ourselves from the world, from the system. We make our own living, we don’t work for anybody else, we have all this time freedom.
Jocelyn Sams: It felt really good until you start thinking about how our life is pretty much still dictated by a school schedule.
Shane Sams: Yeah.
Jocelyn Sams: We’re not teachers anymore but we still have to …
Shane Sams: We still had to get up at 6:30, gotta get the kids to school.
Jocelyn Sams: Yes.
Shane Sams: Gotta get them out at 3:00, gotta pick them up from the bus. We started feeling really oppressed by this schedule. We also started seeing changes in our kids that we didn’t like. Being oppressed by that school … Isaac would actually come to us and say, “School feels like jail. You’re not allowed to go anywhere until they tell you you can. There was a bell that rings. You get to eat at certain times. There was just no freedom.” Also, too, God love the teachers in this country but it’s just really hard to keep 30 people on pace. They’re teaching 30 something kids a day, they teach something once, they give a quiz, the kid gets a 50 or a 60, and they move on without them.
Shane Sams: We really just felt like our kids weren’t getting what they needed in school. We … Our personal life and our professional life, even, when we podcasted, when we did anything was totally dictated by the school schedule. Our afternoons were very low quality with our kids. They would come home exhausted. It was a fight to make them do even more homework, even though they had already been at school eight hours a day.
Jocelyn Sams: We had to do nightly reading. I was always fussing with them, “Have you done your nightly reading? Have you done your math? Have you studied your spelling?”
Shane Sams: All these expectations. These expectations from someone else were just invading the personal time that we had with our kids. Night times were becoming a nightmare because, as our kids have gotten older, they’ve gotten into more activities, and as older kids’ activities happen later. Anna Jo’s cheerleading schedule ended up being at 7:00 at night this year. It’s 30 minutes away in another town, so she was getting home at 9:30, wasn’t going to sleep until 10:00, waking up at 6:00 the next day. It was just this endless cycle of our kids being tired.
Shane Sams: I remember looking at Isaac one day and he had deep, sunken-in, tired eyes, dark, dark bags under his eyes from this sleeping schedule, from all this madness, from the stress and all the expectations of school. He was starting to feel really bad about himself and we just had to do something different.
Shane Sams: As you heard last week on the podcast, we reached out to some experts, we talked a lot about homeschool and if it would be right for us, and, really, should entrepreneurs homeschool, what were we going to do, when would we work, when would we teach them, who would teach them, how would me and Jocelyn balance that and our relationship and everything else, because we were used to having all this time free in the mornings. We decided to pull the trigger.
Jocelyn Sams: After a lot of back and forth, we had considered it many times before, we backed out for a variety of reasons, and, finally, we just decided, “Let’s give it a shot.” Worst case, we go back to what we’re doing now.
Shane Sams: It was crazy because you wouldn’t think … You would think two people who were schoolteachers who had total time freedom would have the easiest day of homeschool ever, but it was really hard. We didn’t know exactly what curriculum we were using, we had differences in opinions on how we were going to structure the day. The first day of homeschool went really well. The first two or three hours, the kids did their work. They sat there with me while I worked on some stuff. I helped them with some things.
Shane Sams: Then, we had this disaster strike. My mom fell at her house and broke her back. We’ve talked a little bit about this on the podcast before. Right in the middle of the first day of homeschool, we get this call that my mom is laying on the floor paralyzed. I leave, I go with my brother, we find my mom, we call 911, we get her to the hospital, we had to take her to another hospital an hour and a half away. I end up staying in another town for four straight days with my brother and my dad and my mom as she’s having surgery, all while we’re in our first week of homeschool.
Shane Sams: Kind of looking back now, it was probably the best thing that ever happened because one night, Isaac came with me to stay with my mom overnight in the hospital. What an amazing experience that was for him. We didn’t have to worry about going to school the extra day. It was kind of one more thing off of our plate. Even though it’s hard, even though it’s a challenge, even though we are nowhere near figuring it out, it’s been a really good thing so far, and I can see how it can be a good thing in the future. Does that mean our kids will never go back to school? I don’t know. They may want to when they get to middle school or high school.
Shane Sams: It was just really cool to find the courage to do that because we were scared. Don’t you think you were scared to do it a little bit?
Jocelyn Sams: I’m still scared now.
Shane Sams: Yeah. I know, right? It was terrifying a little bit. We wanted to do it but it was almost like quitting our job. That’s the only thing I can even compare it to, is I don’t know if it’s the right thing but the only way we’ll know is to try. We may fail miserably. Actually, quitting our job might have been easier, because, if we failed miserably then, we could just go back to work. If we do this for five years and we screw up our kids, they’re pretty much behind forever. That’s kind of terrifying to say out loud. It’s not really true, but that’s the only thing I can really compare it to.
Shane Sams: We will finish up the good stuff with we are homeschooling now. We’re going to travel a lot more with the kids, we’re going to do a lot more with the kids, we’re going to spend even more time with our kids coming up here in 2019. We’re really excited to where that part of our journey takes us.
Shane Sams: We are going to tell you more about 2018. Coming up next, we’re going to talk about all the bad things that happened. We’re going to get into a bunch of mistakes that we made that we really want you guys to hear, like hiring and firing employees, building your team. We had a massive amount of turnover this year and we made a lot of mistakes in the hiring process that we want to share with you guys. We want to be really super transparent and clear about our relationship. Jocelyn and I had our moments, let’s say. Jocelyn always says … What is it you always say?
Jocelyn Sams: Usually, we bring out the best, and occasionally the worst. I think that might have been opposite in 2018.
Shane Sams: I think it might have … Yeah. I think usually we brought out the worst in each other but occasionally we brought out the best and it was really good. We’re going to talk about some marital strife in the Flipped Lifestyle headquarters, Sams household this year, but all good things that made us grow, and some of the things aren’t even resolved. Just that struggle that we all go through and working together and what that kind of looked like.
Jocelyn Sams: People ask about that all the time so that one should be really interesting for people.
Shane Sams: Yeah. We’re going to get into more detail than we’ve ever gotten in that.
Shane Sams: We’re going to talk about some severe loneliness that Jocelyn and I both felt this year. We’ve really reached a new level of let’s say notoriety in our business. We lost some relationships this year and we wanted to talk about how there is a price for success. There always is a price that you have to pay and it’s not all sunshine and rainbows. We want to get into that a little bit. Talk about some mindset struggles, everything from doubt in our own abilities to boredom, and also just some different things that kind of went wrong in the business and in our life in 2018.
Shane Sams: We also want to talk about the future. Jocelyn and I have huge, huge plans, not only for ourselves in this upcoming year but for you. One of our main missions in life is to make sure as many families as possible have the opportunity to start an online business, to start a side business, to work from home, to change your life and your family’s future. That is a passion for us. It’s almost like our mission in life is to be able to do that, to get our message out there to as many people as possible and make it accessible. You go out there and you see all these people selling $10,000 courses and all that. Every day, we say, “How can we make this more accessible and more affordable to more families?” We’ve got some huge announcements that we’re going to make about Flipped Lifestyle and the Flip Your Life community.
Shane Sams: We are going to do that on Friday. We’re going to cut this one off. We’re already 50 minutes into this part of the podcast, so we will continue this discussion, our 2018 review and a look into the future, 2019, on Friday. Make sure you tune in to the podcast for the rest of that.
Shane Sams: Don’t forget to head over to flippedlifestyle.com/live and get on the waiting list or check out all the information about our live event for next year. We’re going to have a lot more about that coming up in the next couple weeks so make sure you get the preview. Tell us your story. Leave us a review over on iTunes. We want to hear how the Flipped Lifestyle podcast, how our message of hope and freedom, and how our community online has impacted you in the last year. How did our podcast inspire you, motivate you to even think about or dream about it in your car on the way to work, a different future for your family? Go leave us a review over on iTunes. Tell Siri subscribe to the Flipped Lifestyle podcast, then click over and leave us a review.
Shane Sams: We will continue this discussion, which should get very, very interesting, on Friday. Until then, get out there and do whatever it takes. Take action, Flip your life.
Jocelyn Sams: Bye.
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