Ep 240: How Emotional Intelligence Is Your Secret Weapon To Unlocking Your Greatest Potential In Business With Itamar Marani

Do you want to unlock your greatest potential in business and achieve incredible results?

In this special podcast episode, Jaryd Krause has invited Itamar Marani, who will share his expertise in emotional intelligence.

Itamar’s unique journey defied conventional education. He skipped university, immersing himself in real-world learning. At 18, he joined an elite Israeli Special Forces unit, engaging in a decade-long tenure in international counter-terrorism. In 2008, he became the youngest graduate of Israel’s Air Marshal program. With a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt, he excelled globally and led diverse teams, overseeing substantial assets as a billionaire’s security chief for three years before departing due to ethical concerns. A close encounter with Al Qaeda while undercover spurred mentorship from Mossad’s head psychologist. 

Now, through “The Arena,” Itamar nurtures emotional fortitude and an effective mindset among entrepreneurs. Over 100 such individuals have benefited from his guidance, rooted in his multifaceted background encompassing special forces, counter-terrorism, psychological mentorship, and athletic achievement. His goal remains—equipping entrepreneurs with practical resilience and a mindset devoid of empty motivation.

Today, here are the interesting topics that they have talked about: What holds people back from achieving incredible results? Why can some people come in guns blazing and get results while others are slower? And how do you uncover what is not true for you that’s holding you back, and how do you give yourself the space to re-shape your beliefs?

They also discussed how and why men may find it challenging to feel emotions and learn the cues they need to listen to in order to make incredibly impactful decisions. How was emotional intelligence for myself and Itamar one of the best things for our growth?

Lastly, Itamar shares a really cool story of his that pushed him to work on his emotional intelligence.

Check out this episode and unleash your full potential in life and in business. Smash the ‘Play’ button to get started.

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Episode Highlights

04:30 The metal blocks that stop entrepreneurs from scaling their businesses

12:20 Is suffering a good thing to grow as a person?

19:30 How does having a clear view of reality help you achieve results?

28:25 Why stick to your values in the early stages of the business?

39:20 Feelings are not facts!

42:48 Why do people struggle with working on their emotions?

Courses & Training

Courses & Training

Key Takeaways

➥ Continuing to do what has always worked may yield decent results, but it may not be the most efficient or effective way to achieve a goal.

➥ Fears can manifest as beliefs that hinder progress. Identifying these beliefs is crucial to understanding the source of resistance and reluctance to take necessary actions.

➥ It’s essential to examine and question the beliefs that may hold entrepreneurs back from exploring new opportunities and approaches in their post-exit ventures.

➥ People may feel pressured to follow certain actions or paths based on societal expectations. It’s essential to evaluate whether these actions align with personal goals and values.


About The Guest

Itamar Marani didn’t go to university because he was getting an intense real world education.

At age 18, he was drafted into the most elite unit in the Israeli Special Forces and spent over 10 years in federal and private international counter-terrorism units.

In 2008, he graduated from the Israeli Shin Bet’s prestigious Air Marshal program as the youngest person in the country’s history.

He’s a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu black belt under a 9x time World Champion and was ranked in the top 10 in the world at the amateur level.

He led multinational teams of Navy Seals and other Special Forces veterans and managed assets in the 9-figure range as the chief of security for a billionaire, but he quit after 3 years because of the lack of integrity in the work environment.

While working undercover abroad, he had a very close call with Al Qaeda that led to him working with and being mentored by the Israeli Mossad’s head psychologist.

He now leads “The Arena,” which is a mindset accelerator focused on emotional fortitude and an effective mindset for entrepreneurs.

He’s helped over 100 6-8 figure entrepreneurs evolve into better versions of themselves through group and private coaching

His mission is to share everything he’s learned in the Israeli special forces, international counterterrorism, working with the Mossad’s top psychologist and being an internationally ranked BJJ athlete.

His focus is to help people forge an effective mindset, build emotional Emotional Fortitude and become the entrepreneurs they’re capable of being (without any fluff or motivational BS).

Connect with Itamar Marani


Jaryd Krause:

What if most of what you believed wasn't true, and it was the biggest blockage to your highest potential in business? Hi, I'm Jaryd Krause. I am the host of the Buying Online Businesses Podcast. Thanks for coming back. Thanks for listening again. If you are listening and you haven't subscribed, please do so. I never really asked you guys to subscribe. Is it a thing of the past to ask people to subscribe? I'm not sure, but subscribe to the pod if you're not already doing so.

Today I'm speaking with Itamar Marani, who didn't go to university because he was getting an intense real-world education. At age 18, he was drafted into the most elite unit in the Israeli Special Forces and spent over 10 years in federal and private international counterterrorism units.

In 2008, he graduated from the Israeli Shin Bet’s prestige Air Marshal program as the youngest person in the country's history. He’s also a BJJ (Brazilian Jiu Jitsu) black belt under a nine-time world champion and was ranked in the top 10 in the amateur levels of BJJ.

He's led multinational teams of Navy SEALs and other special forces veterans and managed assets in the nine-figure range as the chief of security for a billionaire. But after a three-year period, he quit because of a lack of integrity in the work environment.

While working undercover abroad, he had a very close call with Al-Qaeda that led him to work with and be mentored by the Israeli Mossad's head psychologist. And he now leads The Arena, which is a mindset accelerator focused on emotional fortitude and effective mindset for entrepreneurs, and he's helped over a hundred six-to-eight-figure entrepreneurs evolve into better versions of themselves through group and private coaching.

He's on a mission. And his mission is to share everything he's learned from the Israeli Special Forces international counterterrorism, working with the Mossad's top psychologist, and being an internationally ranked BJJ athlete.

So he focuses on helping people forge an effective mindset, build emotional fortitude, and become the entrepreneurs they're capable of without any of that fluffy motivational stuff, and we talked about that in the podcast. We talked about inspiration and motivation, how they can be hypey, and why they don't work.

This is seriously one of my favorite podcast episodes because we talked about some of the subjects that I don't typically get to talk about in terms of emotional intelligence. We talk about what holds you back from achieving incredible results, why some people can come in with guns blazing and just get incredible results, and why some people are slower to do so.

We also talk about how to uncover what's not true about you that's holding you back and how to give yourself the space to reshape your beliefs. We talk about a process or a couple of different processes that Itamar shares as well. We also talk about how and why men, or many men, find it challenging to feel emotions and learn the cues that they need to listen to, which are from their emotions, in order to make incredibly impactful decisions in their lives.

We also talk about emotional intelligence from myself and Itamar and how it was one of the best growth tools for myself and Itamar, and he also shares a really cool story of his that pushed him to work on emotional intelligence through this encounter with Al-Qaeda.

And yeah, it's a really refreshing podcast episode. You guys might see a side of me that you've never really heard before. And yeah, it's such a valuable episode. I'm sure you guys are absolutely going to love it. So let's dive in.

What's up? This is Jaryd, and I am thrilled to have you here. Before we dive into the show, I want to remind you that for a limited time, you can get one-to-one voice note mentoring with me to help you buy and grow your online business. I'm opening up just a few slots of voice note coaching to give you one-on-one access to me via Coachvox.

You'll tell me your goals and challenges, and we'll work through them together. I'll ask questions, I'll tell you what I think, and we'll get you ticking boxes and achieving your online income goals. You can message me anytime, and I'll respond within 48 hours. Right now, you can get 20% off by using the coupon code JARYD. That’s J-A-R-Y-D. And I'll drop the link in the show notes so you can find out more. Until then, let's get on with the episode.

Itamar, is that correct?

Itamar Marani:

Correct. Thank you for having me, Jaryd.

Jaryd Krause:

Welcome to the podcast.

Itamar Marani:

Thank you for having me. Appreciate it.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. Let's dive straight in. I just want to pick your brain, as a lot of people listening probably do. There are so many things to touch on with what you've learned throughout your journey, which is fascinating to me, but let's just start from the top. Let's talk about some mental blocks that entrepreneurs are, you know, the most common ones.

What would be the most—and I know that it can be typically ourselves, probably, where most of them stem from? I could be wrong there. But what are the top two to three most common mental blocks that entrepreneurs—they're in a six-figure range—want to get to that eight-figure range or nine-figure range that they have?

Itamar Marani:

That's a great question. So it's interesting how you said mostly ourselves. So some of it is universal, like we all have this fear of judgment. We all have this fear, possibly of people abandoning us because we're doing things they don't approve of—all that. And then there are also very specific things.

So sometimes we have certain life experiences that cause us to have more of one of those ingrained fears that we all have. Or sometimes it's just a timing thing. It's something that I see that's very common, especially with guys that have exited a business already, is that they're kind of latched onto this old mindset of “This is how I was thinking in 2015. So therefore, this is how I should keep thinking.”

But it's not accurate. You're in a very different situation right now. Your reality is different than your reality was in 2015. And if you keep the same kind of assumptions and working patterns or behavioral thoughts, whatever, you're not going to get great results because you're just not looking at the right target, so to speak, or your position toward the target.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. It's similar to what I've said before. Somebody who's earning $10,000 a month to get from 0 to $10,000 a month is not the same as going from $10,000 to $100,000 a month or more. Do you find that when somebody does exit a business and says they exit, just say, under eight figures or high seven figures, maybe they started that business from scratch?

They've learned so much about how to start it from scratch and get it to that point. Have you found that when people exit, they want to go and do something bigger and better, but they start from the start of what they learned before, and then they possibly follow the same journey because they don't know what that next step looks like?

Itamar Marani:

Interesting. I'll say whether they know or not what the next step looks like; it's just kind of a pattern. They're like, “Oh, this is how I did it last time, so this is how this is done.” And it's not the recognition; like I said, this is how it's done when I was making zero to 10k, so therefore, this is why it had to get done this way.

And now that I have much bigger funds and much higher leverage, whatever it may be, it should be done in a different way. It can be done in a different way. So I think, first off, they need to challenge that assumption. Just because they did it that way doesn't mean that's the correct way to get this done. Does that make sense?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, of course. It's kind of like the saying that if you continue doing what you've always done, you're going to get what you've always gotten.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. And it's like the reality is, the interesting one is that they're going to get a good result because they were able to exit. But is that the optimal result? Guess how you did it back then? It worked. And it probably will work now, and it will work even faster because you're more experienced. But is that the optimal way to do that? Probably not.

If you're already sitting on a large sum of cash and you already have it—even if you had to sell your team with it—you have some kind of experience with how to build teams. You shouldn't be doing things the old way. It's not as optimal. You can still get by with it, but is it optimal? Probably not.

Jaryd Krause:

And then, say, somebody has exited business, and we’ll just run with this for now until it's worth changing into a different example. Say somebody has exited business, they got a bunch of money and they want to reinvest it into building something else again, but bigger and get larger results or different results.

Where do they start or how do you help them build something of different magnitude that creates a bigger impact if they haven't learned how to get to that next step? Do you help them sort of—yeah? How do you get them there? What are some of the things you would be working with?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah, it's a great question. And I like what you said about creating a bigger impact. So what I've seen is that a lot of the guys that exited for a certain number did it all for money the first time, the first go-around. They're like, “I just got to get some money. I want to get this life, this freedom, whatever it may be.”

And all of a sudden they're not really motivated to do the next step because they think, “Okay, if I wanna again make a big company, create an exit, I'm going to have to suffer through it like I suffered the first time.” And a lot of times people actually don't go for the next thing. It's because they equate a lot of suffering with it.

Now what's interesting is that I literally just started working with a one-on-one client and he also had the same issue. But he didn't realize that, you know what, I actually don't have to suffer. What if right now, because I actually have so much business knowledge and I think business is so clear about everything I see, I give myself permission to do something I'm also passionate about? And because he also didn't give himself permission to do that, he's like, “Oh, crap. Maybe I can actually do something else. I don't have to just stay stuck.”

And I think a lot of us have probably—nobody really succeeds at the first go-around. Usually the first go-around people try to do something they're passionate about, but because they have no idea about what's actually going on, they get smacked really hard by reality business. So then they kind of corrected themselves and said, "Okay, let's do something that's really numbers focused, but it's not as enjoyable.”

Now what's interesting is a lot of guys after the exit realize, “You know what? I have such a wealth of business understanding that I can allow myself to do something I'm also passionate about.” And when you combine those two, then they would say, "Okay, I want to make something really big and make this big impact.”

So a lot of times, just clarifying what are the beliefs that you hold about why you shouldn't do this, why it's going to be unpleasant, why it's not worthwhile or whatever it may be. And just asking again: Are they true or not? Are they the assumptions that you have to grind it out or not? Are they true?

Jaryd Krause:

That's awesome. Thanks for sharing. It’s so different to somebody that is, “I need to get out of this nine-to-five grind and I need to make this business work and they got a lot riding on it emotionally.” Because of the beliefs they have, they need to make it work and maybe it's just for resource reasons as well.

Compared to those people asking, “What do I want, what do I need to believe in and how do I get there?” on the opposite side, you're in a position now where you could do a lot of things and now you have to sort of reset and readjust and probably relearn who you are at that level and then who you want to become on the next level by asking the opposite of questions like you said before. What do I not like about that previous journey? And is it true for me or not? Does it have to be that way?

I guess I'll be thinking back if I were to build my business the way I have built it; it would happen a lot faster. If I built it in another vertical or another niche, I'm sure it would happen a lot faster because I know the mistakes and know what to avoid, and I'd probably be able to do it with far more fun because I've got the resources.

Itamar Marani:


Jaryd Krause:

But you're saying a lot of people may not have that thought process going into it.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. I think a big part of it is that a lot of people create their first business, the one they want to exit from, to kind of get themselves out of fear or out of scarcity, let’s call it. I need to make more money. And all of a sudden, when they actually have that cash in the bank, they're like, “Well, I don't need to make more money, so why should I suffer?”

And the interesting thing is that it means they're literally equating building a business with suffering. And what you're saying right now is that it doesn't have to be that way. And I think that's a core assumption that needs to be challenged by a lot of guys and girls out there. This is the thing. Maybe you don't have to suffer.

Maybe it could be done in a different way. Especially now, as a smarter, more leveraged individual, I can do it without a lot of pain. There's going to be a challenge because that's part of the game, but without the emotional pain. What if that's a possibility? Just stirring that up is very interesting for people.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, definitely. And I think the word ‘suffering’ is a good thing I'd like to lean into as well. People learn a lot through suffering as well. And is it necessary? How necessary is it to go through suffering on a journey to achieving a result? Because I know that's a big can of worms, right?

And I'm just curious because I know that typically we have seasons in our life where we do suffer from a few things. And I know whether this is a good thing for me to understand and acknowledge or not, but I have learned so much through my suffering. So, so much.

And probably they're the most impactful lessons. So, yeah. How much importance should we place on suffering? Is it a good thing? Or does it help us collapse our minds? Where are you at with this suffering piece for people on a journey like that?

Itamar Marani:

Can I look at it from a bit of a different perspective? Because there’s a question—

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, of course.

Itamar Marani:

So I'm a very big fan of challenging yourself and going through certain hardships. However, I think suffering is an option. This was a really interesting thing that I saw in my time in the Special Forces agencies. We would all go through the same challenges and hardships, but the meaning people had behind them caused them either to suffer or to embrace that challenge.

And some people are like, “I don't want to do this. This sucks.” You're suffering right now if you're thinking that way. If you're like, “You know what? This is a challenge that's really going to grow on me, and I know this is hard, but this is exactly what I signed up for," I don't have to emotionally suffer. Just because something is externally or technically challenging doesn't mean that I have to suffer emotionally because of it.

And I actually think that's the real key. The more hardships you can put yourself through or more challenges you can push yourself through without feeling the emotional weight of suffering through them, the more you'll be able to grow. Because it's not like, “Okay, man, I have to go through a season of suffering and then I have to go lay on the beach a little bit and relax and recover.” And I think that's a big key to recognizing that not all challenges mean that we have to suffer because of them. It's a choice.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. I love that. It seems like it is definitely a choice. And also maybe our attachments to what suffering means for us. If I want to, say, go for a run and I'm going to go for a longer run than usual, I'm okay with suffering through some of the pain. And it's a positive thing for me, the way I look at it through that lens, that it's going to allow me to have longer runs in the future and allow me to maybe be fitter or allow me to get closer to that double marathon or whatever it is. So I see that as good suffering versus unwanted suffering, right?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah, yeah. I remember in bootcamp, they used to always yell at us, “You love this. You love it. You love this stuff.” And they never yelled at us, like, “Guys, learn to suffer through it.” It was like, “Learn to love this. This is your thing.” And I think that's kind of what you're saying, correct?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. My previous partner and some other people in my life had said, “Oh, Jaryd's a bit of a sicko for hard work and pain.” Because I know on the other side of it, it's like amazing growth and I'm okay with it.

Itamar Marani:

So, can I ask you a question here?

Jaryd Krause:


Itamar Marani:

Why do you choose the word suffering' and not the word, like, I love challenges? I love hardships that I need to overcome. Why did you choose that word?

Jaryd Krause:

I think because I've been listening to a lot of spiritual people talk about suffering and that's probably why it's relevant for me. But I'm glad that you asked that and held me accountable to that, because I think it's not a necessary word. Yeah, right.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. Suffering is a choice. I also think that in the realm of spirituality, they always talk about suffering as a choice. Hardships are not; that's life. But suffering is a choice. I think it's really powerful to be cognizant of that.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. So how much do people's fears get in the way when they're wanting to grow their business? And how do you become aware of their fears that they may be unconscious of as well?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah, great questions. So I'll have to give; for some people, it's more; for others, it's less. That's the bottom line. There's a spectrum to it. Now let's kind of break this down. A fear is simply the belief that something is going to cause you harm or pain or is a threat. That's really what fear is at the crux of it.

Jaryd Krause:

Just a belief, yeah.

Itamar Marani:

Exactly. And a belief is just something that you hold to be true for you. It's not a fact. It's not science. It's not gravity. So the way I like to do that is figure out what the fears are that are holding you back. It’s not to ask somebody straight up, like, “What do you think your fears are?”

That’s why I don't like this whole term limiting beliefs because what you're doing there is asking somebody, “What are the things that you're aware of?” instead of trying to figure them out. Let's figure out what your blind spots are. And that's what's really dangerous.

So the easiest, simplest way I've found to do that is to figure out, okay, what are you trying to achieve next? And say, “I want to build the next business. I want to. I can't explain why, but I want to." What are the things that you should be doing? What are the daily actions, the monthly actions, or the big levers that you should be moving in order to make that happen? They're like, "Okay, I should be doing this, this, and this.”

Great. What are some beliefs that you have around that make you feel uncomfortable? Let's flush them out. Forget about what your limiting beliefs are; I'm not asking that. Just what are your thoughts on this subject? If this happens, then why? Or unless I do this, then set. What are some structures that you have there?

And then all of a sudden, we flush things out and we're like, “Ooh, that's interesting.” Because you recognize that this belief that you hold, that if I do this, it's going to mean that, will definitely negate your ability to actually action this item that you said you should do. This is where there's conflict.

And the moment we can figure out where the conflict in your belief structures is between your beliefs and what you should be doing, that’s when we figure out that these are the main things that we need to work on. If we can falsify these things, it breaks that. You can actually take action. Does that make sense at a high level?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. No, it definitely makes sense because there might be things that people will need to do, but they might have some resistance to them, and they might feel that, but they haven't pinpointed what that resistance is. And that's maybe a reason why they're not taking action on that thing that they may need to.

And I found this in my life as well. I've thought I needed to do certain things to grow my business and to grow parts of my life. It was a thought, and it could have been from societal conditioning of what I perceived was the right action to take, but I had resistance to it. And I've had mentors that have said, “So if you do this, do you actually want that result?

Is that something you want to go through? Is that resistance like a good thing because it's preventing you from doing the actions that you don't want to do anyway? ” and then calibrated to what the actual goal is and then what the actions look like for that. Do you find that pop up as well?

Itamar Marani:

Again, I'll answer it in a bit of a different way. I think I can get to the crux of the question.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Itamar Marani:

I think it's all about helping people have as clear a viewpoint of reality as possible, which is the most optimal behavior to actually get your result. Now it could be that your belief is that if I do this thing, it's actually not going to get an optimal result because I'm more attached to my emotions than the results without people recognizing it.

And I'm actually more attached to people liking me, to nobody judging me, or to nobody thinking, “Oh wow, he succeeded that time; he was lucky, but this time, he's going to fail and he's going to prove to everyone, including himself, that he was a one trick pony.” And I'm actually more attached to that than actually sending out the surveys of whatever I should do next or whatever it may be.

That's one thing to recognize whether am I more attached to my emotions and the outcome I say I want? Because a lot of times we'll say we want something, but we're actually more connected to something else. That's one—figuring that out. Is that actually what's going on here?

And then two, if we recognize, “You know what? I do really want the result; that's what I'm focused on. But I still have some kind of insecurity there.” Is that insecurity valid? Because a lot of times we just feel a certain way, but it's not valid. And the more we can overcome those things, the better we can flow, honestly. Both get a clear idea of what we should be doing, like you said, but also do not struggle through them so much.

Every task that we do at a high level has both a technical level of challenge and the emotional weight we add to it. Like that emotional weight, that's what I was talking about. That's the suffering. It's not always necessary. So if we can figure out why this suffering is happening, we can sometimes reduce it.

Jaryd Krause:

So what you said is that every goal has a technical aspect to it, which it sounds like—am I correct in saying that those are the actions that need to be taken to get the result and then we put our beliefs, maybe?

Itamar Marani:

You attach emotional meaning to it more than you actually should. For example, I see a surfboard in your background. To catch a wave, it's okay; I need to paddle, I need to time it, and I need to get up on a very simple level.

But if I'm also thinking, you know what, what are the people next to me on the wave going to think if I fall down? Or what are the people on the beach going to think? What does this mean about me that I've been trying to learn surfing for two years and I can't get it right? Then it's like, all of a sudden, you're not going to perform and you're more in your head than actually focused on the task. You're emotion focused. You’re not actually problem focused. You're not going to get a good result. So a big part of it is figuring out where we do that in our business as well.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, yeah. I see that true with a lot of friends that I surf with. Surfing's a huge part of my life. That's why I have it in the background. It's a big part of my branding as well. And I see that with friends that will paddle out to a certain break or go and surf a wave pool and they're good surfers. And then all of a sudden there's a crowd and they're like stuffing up because they have this emotional attachment that they don't want to be judged or that they don't want to feel inferior to maybe where their surfing ability is actually at, right?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. We all want to feel like we're doing a good job. It's a big part of it.

Jaryd Krause:

And I guess it's kind of like a therapy session for business owners. What do you do? You end up seeing what that emotional weight is and then, I guess, you just work through it. You just ask them questions about it. How does that work?

Itamar Marani:

So I'll say a couple things. I think it's a bit different than therapy because we're really trying to move aggressively forward towards something. In therapy, a lot of times it's looking at your past assignments. Again, therapy is a very wide modality. A lot of times, people get stuck looking at their past. Now what we try to do is get people to very aggressively move forward. In order to do that, sometimes we have to look in the past in order to move forward. But it's very quickly that.

Now, what we do with these belief structures is less about just feeling heard and kind of talking through them, but a big part of their logic is trying to falsify them. Because my assumption is that the people who really want to move forward and the people who actually can't succeed in business are going to be very logical and rational individuals. And the moment you can present to them, “Hey, a way you were looking at the world actually isn't true,” and you recognize that it's not true, they can start to let go of it.

So, for example, if someone has the belief that if I don't do this all myself, it's never going to get done correctly, That's a belief they formed when they were hiring $3 an hour VAs in the Philippines when they just got started or whatever it may be. And that's why they keep working so hard on things that don't actually make a big impact.

And we can actually break that belief to say that if I hire the right people within the right frameworks and I clarify the roles, da, da, da, da, I can actually see a lot of success faster. All of a sudden they're like, “You know what? I can buy into that.”

It's not because I said, “You know what? My negative belief, my limiting belief, is that people don't want to help me, and a positive belief is that the universe will conspire for me.” People don't buy into that. But if you can say, “What's the belief that you held without you recognizing that blind spot? And then is that true or not? And if it's not, what actually can be true?” It's a very different thing. And I think that's the process in a nutshell.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. I was just going to ask you what are some of the questions that people could ask themselves? And those are the ones, right? Is that what you're thinking? Is that true? And if it's not, what could be true?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. So the way I like to break it down is, okay, you figure out that this is a belief I hold. Then try to ask, “Why do you think this is true? Because we’re going from an assumption, this isn't a fact. So if it's just a belief, where did you learn this to be true? What experience in life taught you this? When did you learn this?”

Oh, I learned that I shouldn't speak up. I shouldn't do any public speaking. Because when I was in third grade, we had a show and tell, and all the kids laughed at me. Okay. So you're basing that assumption on that?

Or whose example did you see this from? Well, my father worked really, really, really hard all his life and he needed employee leverage, but he was also a very high integrity individual and someone I really respect. So I think that if I hire a lot of people, then that means something negative about me. Perhaps I'm greedy.

So try to figure out again, “Where did you learn this from? What experience taught you that? Or who did you learn this from?” And then we say, “Okay. Is this true or not? And they're like, “This is probably not true. This is actually relative to this context. It's not just an overarching truth in the world. It's not a fact.” And we say, “Okay.

So what is actually true? What is true for you today, with all your skill sets and abilities? And if you still feel uncomfortable answering that, say, “What would be true for somebody else?” And you're like, “Okay. Actually, yeah, I can see that.” And that's usually the process.

Jaryd Krause:

I love that. I absolutely love that. And what do you find—how do I ask this question in the right light? When you're working with somebody who may have these certain beliefs, what percentage of people have beliefs that stem back, say, from zero to seven? What would people call being in the theta state and just a young learner and maybe some of them were learned beliefs, some of them were traumatic experiences or whatnot? What percentage of those ones are the beliefs that hold people back compared to ones that are learned through their lifecycle in business from high school to where they're at now?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. So I think it's a great question. Can I break it down even more?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, please, please do.

Itamar Marani:

I've noticed that the biggest things that hold people back are their beliefs from their infant stage in business.

Jaryd Krause:


Itamar Marani:

So think about it this way. The reason, on a conceptual level, that those things, from zero to seven, have such an impact on our lives is because we don't yet have the armor of logic and contextualization. So this person, like my dad, yelled at me when I was three. My dad might not love me. My dad yelled at me when I was 25. I'm an adult. We've had a phenomenal relationship. I can handle that. For example, not my father, but for example.

Now in business, the same thing if someone's 120th launch didn't go well, they're like, "Okay, let’s chalk that up to data; let's figure this out.” If their first launch crashes and bombs, they'll be like, “Wow, launch is really a horrible thing.” So it's less so about what I see with these guys in business. It's less so about their zero seven stage, but more so about their first couple years in business. That really leaves a big imprint on them.

Jaryd Krause:

Whoa. That's so good and so juicy to think about. I would like to just go away and sit with that for a couple hours to think about why it would be that that infant state in business is so important to protect your beliefs and to form good beliefs for yourself that propel you forward versus ones that may keep you stuck or have a certain ceiling that you struggled to break through.

Would you say it could be because, in the first stages of business, to be honest, to be true to myself, so much is riding on it? And if I have a launch or I've got this thing that I'm trying to get, because I used to be a plumber and I wanted to get out of being a plumber so I could travel the world and surf basically. And I had so much riding on it. Because if I didn't make it, I'd be a plumber for the rest of my life. That's what I thought back then.

And so it just seems like when you have those what people would say are failures, which can be great learning experiences, that may condition you a lot more in those infant years. Would you say that's probably because there's so much more emotion riding on it? Versus the 120th launch, you're like, “Okay, it failed or whatever. This is learned from the data.”

Itamar Marani:

I see it in a different way. Again, I know I'm not answering your questions directly, but I think there's a reason for it.

Jaryd Krause:


Itamar Marani:

I think in the beginning, honestly, people's belief structures don't matter that much. Their fears and insecurities don't weigh as much because they're so motivated to do something. Like you said, “I have to get out of plumbing. I'm not willing to accept this for my life.”

So think about it this way. Let's say that every time we have the level of motivation, we are fighting against the level of insecurities, fears, internal doubts, beliefs, whatever you want to call it that we have. And when we're just starting out and we want to get ourselves out of that pain of being a plumber, for me, it was working counterterrorism, which I didn't want to do anymore.

Whatever it may be, that motivation is so high that it's a 10 out of 10. So even if I have a 7 out of 10, my personal insecurities, doubts, and beliefs that are holding me back—whatever—I can still power through them. It's kind of like the old story of a mother lifting the car off her son.

Now what happens, though, is that at a later stage, after the exit, for example, after just the business is doing well enough, whatever it may be, that motivation dies down. Now we’re just like, “Okay. Things are kind of good enough. I don't have to power through all these things.” So I don't have to do it, but I still feel a bit uncomfortable. So that one's out.

Now some people try to remotivate themselves by saying, "Okay, let me wake up at 4:00 AM or let me get realigned with my why or go to the conference, read the audio, read the book, listen to the audiobook,” whatever it may be. And that kind of gives them a boost. They take action, but then it weighs down again.

So I think the restructuring of your belief and reconsidering what are the things that I think cause me to feel this level 5 or 6 out of 10, anxiety, fear, whatever, is when you feel like actually it's affecting me. At the beginning, it's not going to affect you. You don't get worried about it. You're so motivated; you're going to make things happen.

But all of a sudden, when things get to that kind of good enough line, where like, I don't have to really push because I don't feel a crucial need to push, but I still want to, but I can't, that's the time to actually say, “Okay. What beliefs of mine are holding me back or causing that extra emotional weight that we talked about that doesn't need to be there?” Does that make sense?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, it makes total sense. It makes total sense. I see it in our own community. So we have a bunch of people that are buying businesses, looking at buying businesses, and you've got people that come in guns blazing and they're like a younger version of me. I'll do anything, whatever it takes, right? And my insecurities, fears, doubts, or whatever that might be, may have held me back. It's just like, “Put them aside; this needs to happen no matter what, right?”

And they go away, and they buy business in a short period of time and just crush it. And then they get the business, and they just keep going and they get on a really good trajectory. And then there's another bunch of other people that are in between, say, 40 and 60, and they're like, got a pretty good job making a couple 100k a year, 150k a year. I don't absolutely need to buy a business, but I want one because it's going to make my life better and I can get out of my current circumstances as an employee. But they just didn't have that motivation as much.

And I could see that at certain stages in my life, as well as with growth in business and other things outside, I am comfortable. Just get comfortable. But I still want more. I still want growth. So then, at that stage, that's where you start working with people to reshape their beliefs. And I'm happy for you to answer this question in a different way.

Do you then start working with them to get them to a point that they so aggressively want this thing that their fears and their doubts or whatever they might have—so I might be asking this in not the most linear path, but I'd love to hear what you have to say.

Itamar Marani:

No, but you are. So basically, what you're asking me—correct me if I'm wrong, is do we help people get more motivated to, like, okay, say, “I have this pain threshold so I'm going to rise above it and this is why it's so important to me?"

Jaryd Krause:

Well, I mean, I wouldn't say motivation because I don't believe it is. I think motivation is like a Red Bull or sugar hit compared to inspiration, which they're actually inspired by and can come from within. That's what I have learned to be true for myself. So yeah, not so much motivation; just hype them up to get to a certain level. Because I don’t know, that's not going to last, in my opinion.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. So it's a great question. And I think it's the common interpretation of what I should do in order to succeed more. I should get more inspired and more aligned, whatever it may be. Now what I actually found out is that the opposite is what works better. If you go into any kind of engineering spectrum, they're never going to tell you, “Oh, let's crank more power into the machine.” They're usually going to tell you, “Let's figure out how to make it more efficient first.”

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, optimize.

Itamar Marani:

Exactly. And that's what I try to do with human beings as well. Instead of saying, “Let's get you more motivated, which can go up and down, more inspired, which again, more aligned, whatever it may be, how can we actually require it to be a lot less challenging, require a lot less effort out of you to actually take the actions?"

Because if you can make it so that you are actually doing the actions—looking for businesses, starting to deal with brokers, whatever it may be—that doesn't have that emotional weight attached to it; it's just another thing that you do, like how you just text a friend or whatever it may be—that means it's going to be sustainable.

So it's not actually about helping them up their desire; it's just about lowering any kind of suffering or any kind of challenge threshold as much as possible. Because I think that's a thing that's going to last. Instead of trying to pump someone up, let's just make this task less challenging so it can be more sustainable. Does that make sense?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, it does. It does. And we do that with our program and system. And yeah, it's still, you know, we've got human beings that are just going through different phases and can still be challenging. So I totally get that.

Itamar Marani:

Can I add something here, Jaryd?

Jaryd Krause:


Itamar Marani:

So I think this is where you guys have a phenomenal opportunity. Because I'm assuming you're doing that at a very technical level. How can we make this as simple and clear as possible for you to take this action? So then, if you also ask, What's the emotional weight that you're attaching to this? What's the belief behind this thing? And this is for everybody listening in. Jaryd's given me all the tools to do this. Why am I still uncomfortable doing this?

You say, "Oh, because I believe that if I do this, it's going to mean that. Or if I take this step, it means that I have to go all in.” Or whatever it may be. And then ask yourself, “Is that actually true or not?” And you kind of have the framework that we talked about earlier to go through that.

Because, if you can recognize, I have clarity in what to do because Jaryd's given me the steps, and now I can reduce some of that emotional weight. Okay, now I can do it. And now you can start winning and adding things up. Does that make sense?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. Making it less scary. More bite sized. Yeah. Cool. I love it. I love it. And are there practices that you—I guess this might be moving into, like what people would call motivational stuff? But are there things that you would teach people to do in terms of practices to be prepared to work on these sorts of things that might be scary for them? "Like mental exercises or anything like that?

Itamar Marani:

Can you give me an example? What do you mean by that? I'm not sure I'm following.

Jaryd Krause:

So Tim Ferriss is a crazy example. I think it was a judgment thing. So he would just get used to feeling judged and whatever. He would just go and lay down and shop for 10 minutes, then just lay on the floor and do odd things like that. There are challenges that some people will have, like speaking in public, speaking on the bus or something like that.

Getting up, jumping on the seat and speaking on the bus—of course, you would want to have those challenges help you and be aligned with your goals. Otherwise, it might be pointless because you might be training for something you're not going to use. But do you prescribe any of that sort of stuff? And it might be specific to each person that you talk with as well.

Itamar Marani:

I think there's a lot of value in what they call exposure therapy—just doing it, getting exposed, and kind of building up that shield. But yeah, I don't advise anything like that. It's more pragmatic, like, Let's figure out where you want to get to. What are the necessary action steps?

Then you do those things. Because those are actually the scariest things that have the most meaning. But before you actually go and do them in the real world, let's run a mental model and figure out, Okay, this is the thing I'm going to do. This is how I'm going to feel. This is the feeling I'm going to have when I'm about to do it.

Now I'm going to recognize that I'm having this feeling because I have this belief that we clarified. This is why it has so much emotional weight. And I also realize this belief is not true. I recognize that I developed this belief because in my first company, the co-founder was this and this, and this is what happened.

And that's why I'm so afraid of going in with a new co-founder. But I also recognize that what is actually true is that if I do things correctly, if I vet people correctly, and if I recognize we should align for values, not for skill sets, it's going to work out well. Anything cliche like that

And then, with that recognition, I recognize it's still going to be uncomfortable. I'm going to feel uncomfortable, but that feeling is not a reason I shouldn't actually do it. And then I'm going to decide, okay, this is why I'm going to do it. This is where it leads all the way back to what I said I wanted. So I do it. And running people—those kinds of mental models help them prepare for when I'm going to face a high impact situation. And it's a skillset. To be honest, just doing that specific thing It's a skill you learn to constantly prepare for. Okay, I'm about to do something that feels scary. Why does it feel scary? Is it valid for it to feel scary?

Why is it worthwhile for me to do it? All right, let me do it, even though it feels scary. That's the big thing to accept—that it's still going to feel scary at times. But feelings aren't facts. Just because we feel a certain way about a situation doesn't mean that's actually what's going to happen. That’s just how we feel.

Jaryd Krause:

That's huge. Feelings aren't facts. That's a really good takeaway to trigger us asking those questions when we're going up to a scary challenge, I guess.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. And can I add something to that that I think could be useful?

Jaryd Krause:

Please do.

Itamar Marani:

There are two ways I like to look at it. First, there are specific situations that we should prepare for that have a high impact. I know I'm going to have these really impactful situations; I need to prepare for them.

That's one thing. Another thing is also to be aware of how can I notice that I'm starting to get emotional and that my feelings are starting to take over my logic? Because if I can be aware of that, then I cannot go down the wrong path, so to speak.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, yeah, definitely. So looking at what those signs are that they may do in their behaviors or those feelings and where it may be in their body or their head or the thoughts they may have that can actually help them to trigger that process of, like, “Let me start asking myself these questions,” to do some sort of “self-therapy” internally or through those questions, right?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. And you obviously know this because you said it. It's all about the feelings—what do I feel? What's my affect? B, body. How do I feel what's going on in my body physically? And C, the cognitive What are my thoughts?

If I can just be aware, what are the main things that I feel when I get emotional? Oh, okay, I feel anxiety, I feel aggressive, I feel triggered, I feel threatened, I feel agitated, whatever it may be. Or B, body, I get cravings, or I clench my fist, I clench my jaw, I slam the keyboard a little bit, things get louder, or I pace up and down the room. Or cognitive. I always have this thought that no one wants to help me. It's all on me. Oh, these people don't understand.

If I can recognize those things, like you said, as a warning sign, then I can say, “Whoa. Itamar is starting to be emotional right now. Itamar is about to do something that's not smart; it actually isn't going to serve him.” So as soon as this happens, the rule is that Itamar takes a step back, takes a breath, and figures out, okay, why is this happening right now? And is the next action we’re about to take actually going to help Itamar or not?

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, yeah. The human body is such a good guidance system and it's just the most phenomenal tool. And I just think, like, I've done a bit of work on myself like most entrepreneurs have. And I found that when I first started doing it as a guy, it was harder to learn to allow those feelings to come and go and to identify what they are. And do you see that—I'm assuming you might—but for working with men, do you work with many women as well? Or do you work mostly with men?

Itamar Marani:

It's mostly men. We work with some women, but mostly men.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. Is it a challenge for them to start to learn what may be a bit of a sign for them—to learn to listen to themselves and their bodies? And maybe this heavy breathing, the frustrations, and all those sorts of things—do you find it a challenge for them?

Itamar Marani:

Yes. And I'll say that I think beyond that—not beyond that, but even prior to that, it's challenging for a lot of them to accept that they need to work on their emotions, that they have emotions. And that's not a soft thing to do. If you're working on your emotions, it doesn't mean you're weak, soft, or not tough. And for me personally, on a personal level, that's what I think could have held me back. I don't know how much you know about my backstory, but I worked for an undercover agency and all that.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, I know a little bit.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. So, in a nutshell, when I was working undercover, somebody who I thought was a training partner at the local Gold Gym when I was working undercover in India turned out to be an Al-Qaeda operative who wanted to kidnap me. And he was very, very close to it. And that developed some PTSD in me that I wasn't aware of.

I got flown out of the country after the next couple days. We caught onto it and blah, blah, blah. And the only reason I allowed myself—I gave myself permission to seek help with this—was because I thought, Oh, this is something that's alpha enough. It feels ridiculous to say that.

Jaryd Krause:

It was something that was what, alpha?

Itamar Marani:

Alpha enough. I almost got kidnapped by Al-Qaeda. This isn't soft. This isn't me being weak. And I'm literally working with the head of psychology at the Israeli Mossad, who deals with this kind of stuff. So this is something that's manly enough for me to get help on. It's not just because I have this feeling that I failed once or something. And for me, again, it feels embarrassing to say that, but if I hadn't done something like that, I wouldn't have given myself that permission.

And I feel like for a lot of guys beyond the technical challenge of being cognizant of what's going on with me when I get emotional, it's just the acceptance to say, “You know what? This actually is very beneficial for me to talk about, and it doesn't mean that I'm soft.” And for me, I think, and honestly looking back at it, I only gave myself that permission after somebody who I respect actually told me, like, “Listen, dude, what you went through is pretty crazy.

You should go get some help.” And only because he was another guy that I respected and he was successful, I was like, “Okay, you know what, this isn't soft.” And I think beyond the challenges of doing it, giving yourself permission would be the biggest thing.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. That's so good. Thank you for sharing that. That sounds like a very scary time with a lot going on mentally for you. And I'm so thrilled that you've learned what you've learned so you can come and teach it to us today.

I spot on agree that for men and learning to feel, I feel, is actual strength, like solid strength. And I found it was for me. It was one of the scariest things to do—to go away from what society taught me was like, “Oh, don't cry here; have a glass of cement and harden up," as I would say in Australia.

And to go the opposite way of leaning into my emotions and learning more about myself and why I was behaving a certain way based on my emotions. I was ignoring them and squashing them or I didn't even know or recognize what they were.

The best men that I know inside and outside of business are the men that have done the emotional work on themselves, and they are just the best operators. And they end up taking money away from it.

They’re the men that end up making the biggest impact because they become the best leaders, from what I have seen. And I found that when I first started, it was the toughest work to lean into that.

Itamar Marani:

Yeah, I agree with you 100%. The simple way I would look at it is that in order to be really effective, you have to be very rational. Someone who's very insecure and not aware of those insecurities because they keep blindsiding him isn't going to behave rationally.

I think that's the thing. The person who understands his biggest insecurities is going to be a rational individual and therefore he's going to be a very powerful individual. Men, women, whatever.

And I think what you're saying is think it's hard for us because, again, we don't do this. All of a sudden you're at age 20 something or 30 something or 40 something, whatever it may be, and all of a sudden you're like, “Dang. This is a skill set that I'm a wipeout out, that I'm a zero at. I've never actually done this. So it's a muscle that I've never trained before.”

So I remember the first time I worked on this; it was exhausting. But I think that's the big thing to recognize. If you know your main insecurities, your main fears, and your main anxieties, you don't have to be held captive to them by your subconscious. And that's why you can act rationally and achieve a lot.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. So much, so much. And I feel that maybe the more you can accept them, it's just a better platform to just grow from. And I think it helps some men drop their egos. It is for me. Drop the ego that I once had to then realize, like, damn, I thought I was doing all of this for me.

And then you can end up making a far be impact and your ego still gets a little bit more of a hit. And in the long run, if you wanted it to be, if you wanted to have that hit, you did end up getting better results as well.

Itamar Marani:

Yep. Yeah. I agree with you 100%, man.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah. It has been so good to chat with you. I would love to just continue having another hour of conversation, but I want to be respectful of your time. Thanks so much for coming on. You have some really good resources that people need to go and check out. I'll be putting links to them in the show notes, but just spell it out for us. What's your website?

Itamar Marani:

Yeah. So itamarmarani.com. That's I-T-A-M-A-R-M-A-R-A-N-I.com. You can find anything you need there. On top of that, if you are into podcasts, we have The Emotional Fortitude Podcast and anything else you look for. We break down actual case studies. This person was here, then he got there. These are the exact steps that he needed to use to overcome his fears, get clear on what he wanted, and overcome whatever issue it may be. They got him this result and we really try to give everything away.

And on top of that, we also have a link. You'll see it in the show notes, but I'll send it to you to find that e-course. Basically, just figure out exactly how to figure out what belief structures are holding you back. Like what we talked about earlier in the podcast. So if you feel like some of this stuff hits home, this will help you flush out exactly what could possibly be holding you back. Get clear on that. It's not a blind spot anymore, but it's just something you can start working through.

Jaryd Krause:

Awesome. Thank you so much for coming on. Guys, check out the pod.

Itamar Marani:

Thanks for having me.

Jaryd Krause:

Check out the course. And everybody who's listening, it was for me. I just want to say, Itamar, that it was very refreshing to talk about business in the light of emotional intelligence and not just KPIs and results and things like that.

I think the biggest growth that I've had is from working on my emotional intelligence in and outside of business. And I'm just super grateful that we got to talk about it today. So, yeah, thanks again.

Itamar Marani:

Likewise. Thank you very much for having me, man. I really enjoyed it.

Jaryd Krause:

Yeah, me too. Everybody who's listening, thanks for listening. Please share this. It's something that people need to hear, and we'll speak to you on the next one.

Hey, YouTube watchers, if you thought that video was good, you should check out this video here on 2 Types of Websites Beginners Should Buy. Or check out my playlist on How I Made My First $100k Buying Websites and how to do due diligence. Check it out. It's an awesome playlist. You'll enjoy it.

Want to have more financial and time freedom?

We help people buy established profit generating online businesses so the can replace their income and spend more time doing what they love with the people they love.


Jaryd Krause is a serial entrepreneur who helps people buy online businesses so they can spend more time doing what they love with who they love. He’s helped people buy and scale sites all the way up to 8 figures – from eCommerce to content websites. He spends his time surfing and traveling, and his biggest goals are around making a real tangible impact on people’s lives. 

Resource Links:

Sell your business to us herehttps://www.buyingonlinebusinesses.co/sellyourbusiness

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