204. What Burnt Pizza Can Teach Us About Business (Quick Motivation!)

What Burnt Pizza Can Teach Us About Business

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Even the best pizza maker is going to have more burnt pizzas than good ones. Even the best baseball player is going to strike out, over and over. As an entrepreneur you will fail, so embrace it and don’t give up. 

204. What Burnt Pizza Can Teach Us About Business (Quick Motivation!)

In this episode, you’ll hear… 

  • Inspiration I found in “Chrissy and Dave Dine Out.”
  • The role social media can play in our negative self-talk.
  • Why “expecting the hard” is critical for entrepreneurs.

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Inspiration from “Chrissy and Dave Dine Out”

If you know me, you know I love food. And TV shows about food. The other day I was watching “Chrissy and Dave Dine Out” and a certain moment struck me. Dave asked Chris Bianco (one of the best pizza chefs in the world), “How many pizzas do you think you’ve made in your lifetime- like a million?” And Chris responded “I’ve burnt over a million. I’ve probably made about 600,000 good ones.” There was one of the best pizza makers in the world admitting he failed way more times than he succeeded– so refreshingly honest!

Social Media and the Stories we Tell Ourselves

People post their wins on social media. They post the good parts of their day. They post what they want to project to the world. This is especially true for entrepreneurs. On the flip side, as entrepreneurs, sometimes we can fall into the trap of feeling we’re the only ones secretly struggling in private. Don’t tell yourself that story. It’s not true. Every entrepreneur struggles and fails. You aren’t alone.

Expect the Hard

Entrepreneurship is not meant to be smooth or easy or fun all of the time. We all hit certain road bumps. Things rarely go as we planned. But that’s part of the process. We chose entrepreneurship because of the challenge. Pro baseball players know that they will strike out a lot. That doesn’t stop them from stepping up to the plate over and over. Follow their example, don’t stop winging for the fences.

Remember, I’m here as a resource for you. DM me on Instagram (@SamVanderWielen) or reply to one of my emails. We’re all on this adventure together.

Download Episode Transcript

Sam Vander Wielen:
Hey, and welcome back to On Your Terms. I’m so excited to chat with you today about pizza. This is the best episode I’ve ever gotten to do because today we’re talking about pizza, but not really. We’re not really talking about pizza. Pizza is just the vessel for talking about a little mindset adjustment that I know that I could use from time to time, so I’m hoping it resonates with you today. So, this all sort of started because I saw an episode of this new show called Chrissy and Dave Dine Out. I think I saw it on Hulu. And so, it’s with Chrissy Teigen and David Chang, but I’ll talk about that more in a sec.

So, I wanted to share this episode with you today because, you know, we see a lot of people share about things on social media, we see a lot of people share good things on social media, and it can make us think, for one, that running and building your own business is supposed to be easy, and two, that it’s going well for everybody else but that we’re the ones that are having difficulty. Like it’s easy for them, but hard for us. Things work out for them, but it doesn’t work out for us.

We also assign a lot of stories to what we see other people doing or sharing on social media that they’re not even trying to promote. I know sometimes people, they really are projecting and using their stories of success or something that went well for them to tell you that things should go well for you. But there are even times when people just share something that they’re not trying to tell you anything about. And we, ourselves, assign stories to those stories and project our own stuff onto it.

I’ve always thought it was important to approach entrepreneurship with more of an attitude that there’s going to be a lot of striking out. There will be a lot of home runs, hopefully several home runs. I mean, to be honest, you don’t need a ton of home runs. You just need a couple here and there, but there will be home runs. But in order to get home runs – and this just helps me to keep my head on straight – you’ve got to go up to bat a lot. You got to take a lot of swings and you got to swing and swing and swing. And even after you strike out, after you whiff, after you hit a single double whatever, you keep coming back. You keep coming back all in the hopes that you’re going to hit a homer, that you’re going to hit a home run and that’s what keeps you coming back. But you understand that along the way, you’re going to hit all those other stuff that we just talked about.

So, we kind of touched on this last week in Episode 203 about the fact that, you know, entrepreneurship is not meant to be smooth or easy or fun all of the time. That we are going to hit certain road bumps. Things are going to not go as planned. And I think that the more we embrace that as all part of the process, the more that you can just make your life a little bit easier and less stressful and anxiety inducing when you just know that this is how it is.

Just like it would be unrealistic for a baseball player to go up to bat and every single time think that they’re going to hit a home run that time. They know that they want to hit home runs, of course, and I’m sure they wish they could do it all the time. They understand that that’s not realistic. And so, they know going up there that they are going up there and more often than not they are actually not going to hit a homerun. And then, every once in a while, they’re going to hit a homerun. But they keep going back with that hope and that attitude that it’s going to happen at some point.

So, back to the thing that inspired this episode, this new or at least new show to me, Chrissy and Dave Dine Out where Chrissy Teigen and David Chang go out to eat, they take somebody really interesting, like a celebrity or somebody who they want to talk to out to eat. And at least the episodes I’ve seen so far, David Chang, who’s more of the classic professional chef, he goes into the kitchen and interviews somebody in the kitchen. And then, Chrissy sits at the table and has more of the conversation. Obviously, Chrissy is an incredible foodie and cookbook author and cook herself, and she has these great conversations over the dinner table. And so, it’s a cute show. I’ll literally watch anything to do with food.

But the first thing that grabbed my attention was this episode they had at the very beginning with Chris Bianco. So, he’s like the pizza god of the pizza world. If you’re really into food, like I am, you know who Chris Bianco is. He’s the godfather of pizza, one of the best pizza makers in the world. He owns Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix, Arizona. Originally a New Yorker, because I know people might not think of Phoenix as being the mecca of pizza, but it turns out it is thanks to Chris Bianco. And so, in this episode, David Chang is in the kitchen with Chris Bianco as he’s making pizza in this gorgeous wood fire oven. And Chrissy is at the table with the celebrity guests, which actually happens to be Jimmy Kimmel and his wife. David Chang asked Chris Bianco, "How many pizzas do you think you’ve made in your lifetime? Like over a million?" And Chris Bianco replies by saying, "I’ve burnt over a million. I’ve probably made 600,000 good ones."

Let me just share what Chris Bianco said one more time because when I first heard it, I was like, "Wait. What?" He said, "I’ve burnt over a million. I’ve probably made 600,000 good ones." I don’t know about you, but it is so helpful for me to hear such an icon, a pizza icon, flip this ratio and say that he’s made more burnt pizzas, way more than awesome pizzas. I thought a guy like him might say like, "Oh, I never mess up anymore. I used to mess up all the time. Now, I know I could do this in my sleep," something like that. But this guy, Chris Bianco, he is in his pizza prime and he’s burning more than he’s nailing. I mean, just think about that for a minute. It’s like he’s the best pizza maker, one of the best pizza makers in the country, and he’s burning more than he’s successful.

The next time something doesn’t go as planned, I would love for you to visualize this as a burnt pizza. Whatever doesn’t go well, just visualize yourself taking this burnt pizza and tossing it in the trash. It’s to be expected, you’re going to burn pizzas along the way, just like we talked about in our last episode, in 203. And it goes in that burnt pizza pile so that you can just get back to making your good ones. You might even make fewer good ones than you make burnt ones, just like you’re going to have more strikeouts than you do homers in your lifetime. It is just the way it goes. It’s the part of reaching success, of reaching the pinnacle of anything you do in your life is that you are going to have more burnt pizzas than you have good ones.

And so, I’m just so happy to know that pizza masters even burn pizzas and that he’s burnt more than he’s made good ones. That is so reassuring to me. I hope that this message was reassuring to you as well. I would love for you to respond to my email and let me know you’re going to be better about burning pizzas. You’re not going to be as fussed. You’re just going to be like, "Yeah, burned pizza. I’m on to the next one so I can make an incredible one."

Hit me up on Instagram, send me a DM on Instagram, @samvanderwielen. Let me know you heard this episode and you loved it. It’s always helpful to hear from you. And with that, I’ll chat with you next week. See you soon.

Thanks so much for listening to the On Your Terms Podcast. Make sure to follow on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you like to listen to podcasts. You can also check out all of our podcast episodes, show notes, links, and more at samvanderwielen.com/podcast. You can learn more about legally protecting your business and take my free legal workshop, Five Steps to Legally Protect and Grow Your Online Business, at samvanderwielen.com. And to stay connected and follow along, follow me on Instagram, @samvanderwielen, and send me a DM to say hi.

Just remember that although I am a attorney, I am not your attorney and I am not offering you legal advice in today’s episode. This episode and all of my episodes are informational and educational only. It is not a substitute for seeking out your own advice from your own lawyer. And please keep in mind that I can’t offer you legal advice. I don’t ever offer any legal services. But I think I offer some pretty good information.


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