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The Power Of Public Speaking With Alex Moscow
I am joined by none other than Alex Moscow, who is not only a very good personal friend of mine, but he’s a specialist in helping people develop something which he calls the Congruent Coach, helping coaches develop their own businesses and earn 6 to 7 figures and even more. Alex, welcome to the show.
Thanks for having me. I’m excited about this one.
Why don’t you explain to people exactly what it is you do so they know before we get started into how to help them?
I have a company called Congruent Coach and we help coaches scale to seven figures and beyond by being the most congruent and expressed version of themselves. We have a heavy emphasis on high-end sales and working with a higher-level type of client. That’s everything from helping them craft their marketing and their messaging to attract that higher-level person. Also to the packaging and the positioning of the different offers that they have, whether they’re masterminds, one-on-one coaching, retreats. We have a separate side of our business that helps them scale. We helped them scale through creating powerful and super-profitable live workshops, events and retreats as well.
I’ve known you before you even launched Congruent Coach. You had a lot of success since then. I know that you’ve dealt with a lot of your own personal troubles and difficulties as well. A lot of the time people don’t attempt to start their own business or they allow their business to stagnate because they feel that they have their own issues that are holding them back or they’re not worthy or their own complications. Could you share some of that and maybe give some enlightenment into some of the problems you faced and how you overcame them?
I got into the coaching space, interpersonal development and transformation because I’ve had a challenge with a speech impediment with a stutter for a large part of my life, where in school I was very shy. My deepest fear was talking to a stranger to make friends. I grew up like that. Even though I still excelled in sports and did well in school academically, it was a huge challenge in my life to think one thing but not be able to say it. That was super painful. Even when I look back and I’ve done a lot of work around what happened in childhood and I’ve done a lot of transformational work there. I look back and I’ve always known that I wanted to help people create a better life essentially. The way that I would say it is growing up, I was the kid that strangely enough all my friends would come to for advice.
I was the kid with the stutter where everyone’s coming to me for advice, which I thought was strange. I like it but I didn’t have the confidence to be able to truly help people because my story was there are all these other kids who don’t have a stutter, why would somebody come to me? Fast forward into college and it was right after Cinco de Mayo at San Diego State University. It was May 6th, 2008. At 2:00 in the morning, I got home from a party. At 5:38, my whole window shatters. I’m woken up out of an intoxicated sleep with huge assault rifles pointed down to my face and there are four men in SWAT gear yelling, “DEA.” They threw me on the floor. I got arrested for selling drugs.
At that time, I’m sitting in the back seat of the cop car. I had a chance to look at how did I get here? I was a 4.3 student to graduate in high school. I had a loving family who was super supportive. I wasn’t selling drugs for the money. I was selling drugs because I wanted people to like me. It was a great way to meet people. I look back and it was one of the first times where I realized that I would overcompensate for everything. Because I didn’t feel good enough, I felt like I needed to do more and above. I wasn’t good enough on my own how I was because I had this challenge with my speech.
After I was arrested, I was brought to my first personal development event. That’s where I learned about mindset and limiting beliefs. I learned about not just mindset, but how you transform those limiting beliefs. I realized that it wasn’t my stutter that needed to change. It was my story and my relationship with that part of me. For many years, I was making it wrong or bad or with such a limitation on my life. In business, it showed up where you have to do sales. If the sales are the lifeblood of a business, talking to strangers and making sales was a huge stretch for me. I also realized that if I was believing in the product and the services that I had, I had a moral and ethical obligation to be able to sell it to that person if they were the right fit.
Here’s what I love about you. Psychologists have done these multiple times and they’ve found that most people’s biggest fear is public speaking. I would argue that you have more reason than anybody to be afraid of public speaking. Yet you’ve overcome an incredible speech impediment to be not only a public speaker but a salesperson. You’re someone who even sells from the stage and helps coach people to become a more confident version of themselves when they’re speaking even though they don’t have the same difficulties that you have. What would you say was the secret that helped get past that? You’ve dealt with all this trauma. Did you do any lessons or how did you do it? How did you get past it?Oftentimes, we choose our company names for our brands because it's the lesson that we also get to learn most. Click To Tweet
When I was nineteen, I went to my first seminar. I’ve been to seminar rooms. I’ve been going to workshops. I’ve been going to retreats. I’ve traveled all over the world, investing hundreds of thousands of dollars into my personal growth. Growing up, traditional speech therapy didn’t work for me. What I recognized was the more connected that I got to myself and the more that I cleared out trauma and all the limiting stories that lived inside of me, that’s when my speech started to become more fluent. I realized that I do have value to share with the world. I do have something to offer.
What it became to me was less of, “Do I do this?” It became more of a responsibility. It’s a choice. Transformation happens in the moment of making a decision. For me, it was a decision of I was no longer willing to let my own limitations and my own bullshit story get in the way of myself helping other people. The moment was that decision, looking for, being scared and going for it anyway. I still get the nerves even hopping on this show. It still comes up here and there. It just doesn’t have ownership over me anymore. It still comes up on my sales. It still comes up when I meet new people. It still comes up when I speak on stage and I do that a lot.
I believe that all of us get to make a decision. What I’ve recognized for me was that whenever I was having a challenge or I was playing small, I was making it about me. What are people going to think about me? They’re going to think that I stutter. They’re going to think that something is wrong with me. That’s all thinking about me. When I focused on what is the value that I have to share, how I can help other people and I’ve stopped thinking about myself and started to think about how can I serve, that’s when everything shifted for me.
That’s so important for people to remember. There’s a great quote. I’m going to paraphrase it because I don’t remember it exactly, “The difference between a fool and a hero is a fool doesn’t feel fear, but a hero acknowledges the fear, accepts it and continues on regardless.” What you’re doing is the definition of being a hero because you are acknowledging the fact that the fear exists. Every time you speak, there’s a chance that the speech impediment will affect it and yet you don’t care and carry on regardless because you want to help others. I’ll share a story with you. I had an issue where there was a short circuit in my brain. I had the equivalent of a minor stroke. I lost the ability to speak for a period of time. During that period of time, I developed and re-found my fear of public speaking.
I had to speak a week later as I was recovering and at the back of my head, the entire time was what if you forget to speak again? For a minute and a half on stage, I lost the ability to speak. I don’t think it was connected to what happened before. It was my own brain. I convinced myself that I‘ve forgotten. I freaked out. I was basically having a full-on public speaking, freak out, panic attack. I managed to acknowledge it on stage, take a drink of water as if it was a planned break, calm myself down and continue on. That was the beginning and end of my fear of public speaking again. That was an incredibly difficult experience for me. I can only imagine what you must go through. You run events constantly. You’re constantly on-stage teaching.
We do between 5 and 7 events a year for our organization, whether that’s our flagship events like Small Events Big Profits or Congruent Coach Live. We have different smaller masterminds for our clients who are in our year-long programs. I’m speaking a lot on different stages. I come in and do specialized training for different masterminds. I’m speaking probably I’d say on the average, once a month.
Let’s talk a little bit more about what you do. You have this brand, the Congruent Coach. Why did you choose that brand? We’ve had other experts on here before that talked about the power of coaching and why coaching is good or where the coaching is going away. What makes Congruent Coach different?
I believe that we choose the company names for our brands oftentimes because it’s the lesson that we also get to learn most. It’s the lesson that we keep learning. For me, I’ve been in the coaching and the online marketing space for the past several years now. For the first few years, I was working for someone else. One of my mentors, he also had a coaching business that was helping coaches and experts to grow a business online and offline. I’m grateful for that opportunity. I was working with a lot of leaders in the coaching and the online marketing space. What I noticed was that a lot of the heroes who I would look up to when I would meet them and I would see behind the scenes, there was an incongruence in their life.
Maybe they were great in business and helping people make money, but their relationship was falling apart. They’re great in helping people make money but their health, there’s a secret diagnosis that no one was talking about. Also, there are people who are in the transformation space talking about mindset or transformation and living your best life essentially. Their lives did not look like what they were talking about on stage. That incongruence was disappointing to me. It didn’t put a good taste in my mouth of what this industry was about.
When I started my own business, I had a mentor that I’m not going to name. This person was huge in the marketing space and probably arguably one of the most influential marketers. What this person taught me was that if you want your clients to continue to keep purchasing from you and to keep on buying a product after product is you have to create separation and distance. The further you keep your clients away, the more that they’ll buy from you. Don’t ever go out with them to the bar and get a drink. You can show your face and you could have a little conversation with them, but you want to leave as quickly as possible like create that distance.A part of being a congruent coach is not knowing high-end sales, but knowing how to deliver a high-level service. Click To Tweet
It never felt right to me. In my gut, that’s not the way that I wanted to run my business. When I launched my business, I took all of the different models and the frameworks that I learned from the past few years of helping my mentor build his multi-seven-figure business, helping a lot of his clients and helping a lot of his strategic partners. After building it on my own, what I realized was the best way to attract in ideal dream-fit clients who are committed to doing the work, who are happy to pay whatever price I’m charging, who get awesome results and send raving referrals was to be the most congruent and expressed version of myself.
I’ll give you a short story of how this happened. I love going to music festivals even until this day. My queen, Jen, and I would go to Burning Man every year. I love that part of my life. This was a few years ago when I was going to a music festival called Lightning in a Bottle. I ran an event and we crushed it at our event. I’ve bought tickets to Lightning in a Bottle but I never told my clients. I was terrified. There was something in me that the voice told me that I needed to tell them. There was another voice in my head that said, “Your clients are going to leave. You did hundreds of thousands of dollars at your event. They’re going to leave if they’re going to find out that you’re going to go to a music festival for four days.”
I made that decision I was going to tell them and the exact opposite happened. They were grateful I told them and they were encouraging. Some of them were like, “I’ve been there before, I’ll see you there.” Others were like, “That makes us happy that you’re taking time to go do that.” Others are saying, “This gives me permission to go on a vacation with my kids that I’ve been talking about for so long.” That was a huge shift for me realizing that living my life gave my clients permission to live their life too. That snowballed into like my events. We have visionary art on the walls from Burning Man sometimes. Sometimes we have different musical performances. Our events are a huge expression of me. I love house music. I’ve traveled all over the world for the past several years following some of my favorite DJs around. Our music at our events even is a very different feel than most other seminars out there.
The sound quality of the speakers that we invest in for the experience that’s created. Live experiences with your tribe is what builds loyal customers for year after year based upon that experience that you create. That’s a long answer to your question around how did Congruent Coach come to be. It’s important because many people are talking about, “You have to do this marketing funnel.” There are many people that teach us that the most effective way to build your business is to model success. Don’t reinvent the wheel. There’s a part of truth to that. What I’ve discovered is that how to create exponential results is how do you make the model work for you? How do you infuse your uniqueness and your own congruence of how you would do it into your model based upon the success principles that other people have laid out?
You’re a big fan of high-end coaching, looking for a premium client. To get a little bit controversial now, there are a lot of these people turning up like, “I only do high-end coaching tailored to the wealthy.” Do you think that’s sustainable? Is it realistic? Is this going to be able to continue? Are we in a situation where we’re in a bubble and it’s going to bottom out to coaches teaching coaches to teaching coaches?
A coaching business to coach coaches, I believe time will always be the ultimate test. There are many people talking about high-end sales, high-ticket sales and high-ticket clients, but no one is talking about how do you deliver a high-end service? How do you fulfill with integrity on the amount of money that you’re charging? A part of being a congruent coach is that it’s not just knowing high-end sales, but it’s knowing how to deliver a high-level service as well. It’s definitely a bubble. Those who have the experience and the results will continue to stand the test of time because as we evolve, our marketplace is evolving.
People now are more skeptical than ever. Those who don’t know what they’re talking about, those who saw that high-end sale or high-ticket sales is something that everyone else is doing to be successful. They’ve only been doing it for a year or two or they don’t have experience or whatever it would be. I believe that those who don’t have the chops to deliver with integrity on what they sell will continue to fade out. There are many people who I’m sure you know as well, Adam, who will come into the industry. They’ll crush it with a seven-figure launch and a year later they’re nowhere to be found. It happens all the time. I believe that the ultimate test in this industry is always time. It’s one of the greatest opportunities to come in to make a huge difference and make a significant amount of money. It’s where people get taken advantage of too. The best way that I’ve discovered to support the industry, because before I would throw rocks at it like, “Here’s why this isn’t working right or this is why people are always doing it wrong.” I choose to be the example of what it’s like to not just sell a high-end program, but to be able to deliver that as well.
If there’s one golden nugget that anyone should get out of this episode, it should be that it’s easy to be the person that throws rocks at what everybody else is doing wrong and so hard to be the person that stands up and fixes it. I have a good friend in town that was very upset about a lot of Republican policies. We live in Texas and he was venting about it on Facebook every day. We got into an altercation about it. He accused me of being a Republican. I was like, “I’m not a Republican.” It was a lot of things going backward and forwards. I told them I’ve got my own views on the matter as a Brit like I couldn’t even vote.
I’ve got my own opinions. That was before I became American. I was like, “You put so much energy into complaining about it, why have you not gone to the office and spoken to them?” I was so proud of him because he did it. He got up and he went to the office. He put forward some change and try to move the wheel and get things moving. He came to me afterward and said, “Thank you.” He was tired and frustrated of everyone arguing with him online. He needed the permission of someone saying, “Go and do it. Don’t complain about it. Do it and fix it if you feel that strongly about it.” I love what you said like be the example and do the thing.
If somebody upsets you and if you’re annoyed at the way the industry is going, then be the change. Do the different things. That’s the big thing that I want to illustrate for anybody reading this is whatever you’re upset about in life, whatever is irritating you, go fix it and do that thing. Don’t wait for somebody else to do it. No one’s going to do it for you. Do it yourself. If you are that change, you’re going to carve a niche out for yourself and people are going to be drawn to you because they’re going to be like, “I felt the same and this person is doing something about it.” That’s absolutely great. In that way, it’s a way forward. I’m going to be asking you for your psychological hack. If somebody is reading this who wants to be successful in life or grow their business, what’s something they can do to maybe shift their psychology to be more successful? Before that, if somebody did want to learn more about the Congruent Coach, where would they go? How do they find you?Getting from where we are to where we want to go isn’t by having fear and doing nothing. It's by having fear and still doing it anyway. Click To Tweet
The best way would be on Facebook. If you add me on Facebook, it will follow me. It’s Facebook.com/AlexJMoscow. That would be the easiest way. My profile is on there. There’s a whole bunch of super valuable content, videos, posts to articles on that. There are different ways and different opportunities. If you want to go deeper, the opportunities will be on that Facebook page.
What is your big psychological hack that you could leave somebody with? How could they hack their psychology for success according to you?
It relates to the short story that you shared about your friend. I’m going to share it in a short story as well. I went to this event in Australia called Sales Residential. It was $30,000 to go. I did not have $30,000 sitting in some account somewhere. I worked my ass off to down a deposit and to pay it off. This wasn’t for a year’s worth of coaching. It wasn’t for a mastermind. It was for a nine-day live event. As I was there, the first couple of days was all focus on mindset. The mentors who were there asked a question. They were like, “What’s the one fear that’s holding you back from growing your income and impact at the level that you know it could be?”
Mine was doing online video. I was crushing it on stages, but I wasn’t doing video yet. I knew I needed to. I knew it would create a connection with my audience for those who it was right for. I was scared. When it came to me and what I shared was that when I got deeper into it, it was that I was scared that people were going to think I was using my stutter to make money off of people. That’s what the fear was. I’ll never forget this, I told that and it was a vulnerable share. In the room, it was me and nine other entrepreneurs and our mentors who are there. Our mentors looked at me and they said something I’ll never forget.
It’s definitely not what I was expecting. They said, “Alex, that 100% is already happening. People are already saying that about you. People right now are 100% saying that you are using your stutter to make money off people right now.” That was not what I was expecting at all. That hit me in my gut. They said, “I can guarantee you that’s already happening. The question is how do you want to show up? It’s going to happen no matter what. You have a choice over do you want to let that continue to keep you small, which you can’t control? They are already going to be doing that. They already are. They will continue to. The bigger you grow, the more people are going to say that. The choice is not if they’re going to say it or not. The choice is for you. Are you going to or how do you want to show up in spite of that?” That shifted a lot for me. They shared that, “Your biggest fear is already happening.”
The psychological hack that I wanted to share is our relationship to fear and resistance is one of the most powerful relationships that we can renegotiate and we can redevelop. That same resistance is what shows up to keep us in between where we are and where we want to go. When we up level and we create a new result for ourselves, it’s not like that fear goes away. My experience of it is we develop a new relationship to that fear and we learn how to lean into it. We’re going to have our fear no matter what, how we get from where we are to where we want to go isn’t by having our fear and doing nothing. It’s by having our fear and still doing that thing anyway.
It’s funny one of my mentors made a post, Ryan Deiss, he’s one of the guys that invented the DigitalMarketer. Still to this day, he wakes up every day thinking he’s going to fail. It doesn’t matter how big it is. It doesn’t matter how big the business is, it’s still a chance. Alex, thank you so much for taking the time to come on here and join us. I appreciate you sharing your story. For the readers, this is somebody who’s overcome one of the most debilitating things that can be for a public speaker. Yet, here he is being incredibly successful on a seven-figure business. Thank you so much for taking the time to join us.
About Alex Moscow
After struggling for years with a stutter and getting myself hauled off to jail in college, I transitioned into the coaching space at just 21 helping Ted McGrath build a multi-million dollar coaching and seminar organization, from the ground up, in just four years.
Now with one of the highest client success rates in the industry having personally led over 2,152 enrollment conversations and helping influencers all over the world collectively sell 8 figures+, I teach my clients how to sell with truth instead of tactics via the Congruent Closing Method, building businesses that fuel them, so they can live as the most authentic, expressed version of themselves.