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Nothing to Lose
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Dec 21, 2015


Bronze Contributor
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Speedway Pass
Dec 31, 2017
Dhaka, Bangladesh
Steps to solve problem?
1. Clearly state the problem; the more precise and detailed the better.
2. Identify the issue
3. Make a list of the seeds where it's rooted from
4. Make a guess about what things you can control contribute to the problem
5. Formulate a plan for iteratively testing each of these possible root causes. Test most likely cause first, if possible.
6. If necessary, seek out information that tells you how to address each possible root cause.
7. Execute the plan.
8. Repeat until solved.

Sad that most would-be entrepreneurs don't know that the synonym for entrepreneur" is problem solver?
Last edited:


New Contributor
Apr 7, 2019
Dear newly minted Fastlane member,

Good News!

With “just“ a focused attitude, relatively minor action (in terms of your life), little money, and without any formal qualifications whatsoever….

…(it’s true)….

…. you can set yourself on a verified road to financial freedom that will astound your friends, confound your enemies, and give you a grin to make Will Smith’s pearly white smile look British.

Well hot dang! Ain’t that terrific?

Sure is MustImprove, sure is! That’s why I’m here man! What next?!!

Well, I'll explain more below, but first.......

Bad News!

90% of people reading this won’t be bothered to make even the relatively minor effort required.

Threads here have shown time and time again that people can’t resist looking for the lazy-boy way to a mil, even though nearly every real millionaire says it doesn’t work like that.

…but wait, hold on, what’s that you say? All of you are part of the 10%?

Oh well, OK, then great! …and in that case I’ll continue. It’s my turn to put something in the pot.

This thread might get a few reads after all!

The Call We All Want…

A few days ago I received a most marvellous phone call. The type of call that makes you sing to your dog.

Oh, and for @Vigilante ----this is the start of the “next time”. Thanks. :)

It was a customer who I have done business with before, and he’s a good one.

This chap plays the yes/no game with millions of dollars. Are you a “yes” or are you a “no”?…for the money I mean. Well, he decides.

Anyway, I’ll paraphrase, but this is roughly how the conversation went”

Mr Millions – “Hey, MustImprove, how are you? Family doing OK?”

MustImprove – “All great thanks, hopefully you too. I’ve been hanging about with the cool kids over at The Fastlane Forum, discussing how wonderful entrepreneurial life can be. Boy oh boy, I sure feel dandy when I’ve added so much value for my customers that they just LOVE to do business with me, and that when they have a problem that smarts like a 5 year old jabbing your iris, I’m number 1 on their speed dial.”

Mr Millions – “Wowsers, I bet that’s a rockin good joint, but listen……..I have a problem that smarts like a 5 year old jabbing your iris, and you’re number 1 on my speed dial!”

OK, ya got me. That bit was HEAVILY paraphrased, but you get the gist.

So let’s split up and look for clues.

Those who still think the shiny silver bullet to drill the werewolf of mediocrity between the eyes is just around the corner on the internet, you go that way.

Those who are interested in learning something of the real world that can make every day like a Superbowl half-time show, come with me.

The Clues

Some of you still with me? Top work team! On we go!

Look, I’ve found some clues!

Besides, the luminous footprints, and a fake beard, please note the following:

Clue Number 1

Mr Millions didn’t talk about price. He knows my company will be one of the most expensive solutions, and this will be a 200k deal roughly (yeh yeh yeh fellow travellers, I know I need to expand my own mind-set too J). A solution is a higher priority.​

Clue Number 2

Mr Millions didn’t dictate terms, such as being here or there at certain times, or how I solve the problem. A solution is what matters.​

Clue Number 3

No clue, but just to drive it home like a prefect’s wedgie….. A. Solution. Mattered. More. Than. Anything.​

Now pay attention you potential power value generators, a key question is coming up!

A Key Question

How much incremental effort did it take me to secure a solution focused deal worth more than 7 times the average annual USA salary from just 1 customer?

I’ll have to hurry you…….​

You sir, with the stylish Hawaiian shirt at the back (not you Vigilante)….. Correct! – almost no effort at all!

Wow, imagine that. Almost zero effort!

No copywriting challenges and split-testing for months.

No 10k seminars with a guru.

No reading books for years.

No setting up a website, logos, and agonising over a brand.

No Google.

No research.

No digging in forums (again for years!) for the magic “buy now” link that will mean I can print money with no effort forever.

No No No No No No No….

”All” I did to win another great deal was solve the right problem at the right time for the right person ONCE BEFORE.

I want you to think about that.

<contemplation time for you and for me>

‘…and I wuda gotten away with it if it wasn’t for you darned kids!”

Enough reminiscing. What’s the lesson here, and what specifically should you do?

The Lesson Here

At the start, your most important piece of self-development (in my humble opinion), is to become a black belted, top-of-the-class, 1st round draft, Cyberdyne Systems Model 101, whoop-a$$ problem solver!

An ability (and reputation) for solving problems can open doors for you in any industry you choose, and for the rest of your life.

Think about that too!.....the rest of your life. Right now that probably feels like a long time. Well, that feeling won’t last as long as you expect, so enjoy it now!

…and by the way, some of those things I just told you “NO”/ not to do ARE actually important, just at a different time in your development. You need to use them selectively, but you don’t need them to start solving problems now.

So I say “become a problem solver”, and you (might) say. “Good for you MustImprove, but……..”:

“How do I become a problem solver?”

“Every problem is different!”

“How do I win the deal to solve the first problem?”

All valid questions. You are just starting out. You want/need more detail…I gets ya.

What Should You Do? – Two Steps

The first step is easy. It’s not easy to maintain, but that’s for later.

Step1….you find a girl to lov…..oops, sorry.


Step 1 - Make a personal decision that from now on you will be steely determined

This means that you commit yourself to repeated and continuous effort, focused on a problem at hand, until you deliver a satisfactory solution (and ideally a delightful solution) for the person with the problem

Decided already?

Nah. Not right.

It doesn’t need to take a week, but you should consciously embrace this decision. It took me a few attempts, but one day, I really decided, and I’ve not looked back since.​

Step 2 - Develop your problem solving “muscle”

…and now we get to the piece that most of you will ignore, or promise to get back to later, and go for some action faking that will get you in trouble with @theag . If that’s you, you are probably one of the 90%.

By the way, @theag is a valuable member here. He’s a tough love “back-hander” kind of chap, and he smells action faking across continents. He knows the score. Good luck in the ring with him if you are a 90%er!​

For the remaining 10% of the 10% who stayed and haven’t got fed up with me yet, and by my reckoning that’s about 1% of those who read my opening lines, this is my Step 2 challenge to you.

I want you to get into the habit of solving problems for people.

That’s “all”.

It doesn’t need to take too much of your time.

It doesn’t need to cost you a lot of money.

It just takes a conscious decision and some effort.​

Just start, and start simply.

Your first goal is to find someone that has a problem…almost anyone with almost any problem, and smash that problem to smithereens…..out of the park son!

However small it seems, just make that person’s life better…..for free, and without obligation of any kind. Pheww…heavy I know!

….and then, when you have done that and they say thank you (probably), make some time for yourself, pause for more contemplation, and reflect that you got your “starter for 10” (first question) correct, and that you’re now “in the game” properly.

You will have solved a real problem for a real person.

That’s worth a whole week of browsing without real action.

So, then you are a hero to someone. Birds are flyin high, and you’re feelin……good.

….then go be a hero again!.....and again, and again, and again, and again, and again, and….well you know how this works.

You Will Become More Effective With Every Solution

As you solve each new problem you will get better and better at solving.

At first, your creative synapses will barely sputter a spark. You will find solutions hard to come by.

However with each solution sprint, and with your different: approaches, angles, and possibilities, you pour creative go-go juice onto your nascent twinkles of brilliance.

You get better. You get faster. You get stronger and more effective.

More importantly, your personal reputation will grow, as will your self-belief and personal confidence.

People will start to call you when they need a solution.

You will be number 1 on more speed-dials, and that’s a powerful position.

Start To Focus Your Energy

…and then, as you keep reading this forum and TMF (for young Jedi, I know you will still read a lot whatever I/we say), you will become more aware of the value that each of your solutions generate.

…and then, as you become more aware of the value that each solution generates, you will become more aware of the potential for money to flow to you as a result of your problem solving.

…and then you will be able to focus on the solutions that will make you a fully paid-up rubber stamped fastlaner.

….and Then Comes Copywriting and Marketing

@MJ DeMarco and others will tell you that selling, copywriting, and marketing are absolutely vital for fastlaning.

….and they’re spot on, absolutely right. Well, who knew eh?

My only nuance is that you get yourself on the road and rolling first, and in my (extremely) humble opinion you do that best by solving the problems you see first. As you roll on, you focus…..and then you scale with the skills!

Still Doubting?

Well, OK. I can’t force it, but do remember I am telling you this from a very personal perspective.

This is what has worked for me, and nearly every successful person I have known/read about operates (more or less) in this way.

By some standards I am reasonably successful (top 3% financially according to the stats), and I wake up thankful and happy every single day. Life is wonderful.

However I know that I am far from a finished article. I have a lot of work to do to improve. I must! ….but still I hope I can pass on a gift to you so that you can fulfil your potential in your own way.

I don’t need to write this up. I have nothing to gain, apart from the pure satisfaction of passing on some knowledge to others, and giving back to this most special community.

Make of it what you will.


Problem solving works.

It works for customers and it can give you everything you want too.

It’s not easy, but it is doable. You can do it. You just need to start doing it.

I have personally witnessed millions of dollars being given to people who solve problems. You can be one of those people.

You can choose to be a sheep in the utterly fruitless mass flock search for an easy mil, or you can choose to be a problem solver that the mil will find. It really is your choice.

Now, I’m off to sing to my dog. Success and good luck to you all!

P.S. Respect to MJ and all the other authors and posters who have shared “execution” stories and advice to help new fastlaners before me. I salute you. This is merely my take and real world experience around execution and solutions, and it’s just my small contribution to the shared pool of knowledge. Best wishes!
Hi if I was to find a solution to a problem how would I test the waters.Some people believe in there solution to a level where they start spending money and remortgaging there house even if its a dead end.


Speed Is Good, usually only in the right direction
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Speedway Pass
Apr 30, 2013
Hi if I was to find a solution to a problem how would I test the waters.

Hi, and welcome 1523.

This is an important and smart question, and lucky for you there are hundreds of examples around the forum for testing an idea. Which option you choose depends on your business, but certainly you keep costs and risk to an absolute minimum at the beginning.

You talk about testing the water. Let's go with "testing the water" as a business analogy. Here we go…

Of all the world's delights, you decide that your path of enlightenment and life success is to swim. You apply some positive (and no doubt wildly optimistic) scenario planning.

After about ohhh I dunno, maybe a few minutes of careful planning, you can see your future!

You close your eyes, perform your success affirmations, and conjure your "to be" self in your imagination.

You stand at the side of a unknown body of water....or at least you believe you do. In reality there is mystical and impenetrable layer of fog floating and dancing over the surface of "something". Who knows what?

But because you are utterly convinced of success, your hurl yourself forward with all your youthful abandon, somersaulting into the water. You are literally "all in"! Your mind's eye confirms you were wise and right!

The water is warm, pure, and azure. In minutes you're frolicking with mermaids and dolphins, and get can breathe under water! It's perfect, easy, and you wonder why everyone isn’t jumping in. The fools!

Damn, "you da man". You are ready for action. Let's do this! Let's go!


In a rare moment of clarity for a naive entrepreneurial soul, you press the pause button and reflect.

Smart fellow that you are, you joined The Fastlane Forum. Even smarter, you asked some questions and received some well-intentioned advice from some more experienced swimmers. You think to yourself…..maybe it’s good to review that advice…..maybe just a for a minute. Yeh yeh…just in case. Just in case.

Sensibly, you get your feet back on the ground…in fact back on the side. You rewind the scenario. You haven’t jumped yet, and the mist is swirling once more.

Those Fastlane swimmers talked soooooo much about building a “minimum viable product”. They talked about using Adwords to test demand for a service. They built one page websites, spent a hundred bucks on Facebook ads, and tracked how many visitors clicked on the CTA button.

Some fastlaners printed dirt cheap flyers for a local service business and spent an afternoon delivering those flyers to their target neighborhoods.

A few particularly dynamic individuals even called hundreds of potential customers (yep, speaking to real people!) to see how many customers would like to meet for a follow-up conversation. Who knew person to person communication could be effective? Wow!

There were many many options, but each approach had things in common:

Relatively low-cost

Rapid execution

Results that could be objectively measured

Back to your scenario….

This time, instead of leaping in you decide to “test the waters”. Of course you are 100% sure that it won’t be necessary, but you do, ticking the box… know.

You decide to dip your big toe. OK! What can go wrong?

You gently lower yourself and your foot is enveloped by the mist. Damn, it’s freezing!

None the less you press on, fortified by your earlier self-confidence.

Your toe enters the water…..just for milliseconds. But as the great and good say, “a millisecond is a long time in entrepreneurship and swimming”. Actually, it’s probably just me who said that but never mind…..let’s continue.

Immediately lightning bolts of pain rip up your leg. Your toenail dissolves. Acid dwelling piranhas tear every morsel of flesh from your bone, then a shark chomps the piranhas, simultaneously amputating your toe at the second joint. Your big toe is gone!

Screaming in abject pain you coin some new technical terms that would embarrass a Viking. Violently recoiling you roll back to the safety of the bank. Jeez Louise WTF! That ain’t the plan Stan!

…but you are wise enough to know you were lucky. That could have been worse couldn’t it? if you really did go “all in”. You failed fast and you’re still alive. More wary, sure, more cautious, certainly. But you get to try again elsewhere. Happy days!

…and that’s the nature of testing the waters and your idea.

For more testing methods and ideas, do a search on the forum for “validation” “idea validation” “validate” “validate idea”, that sort of thing. I’m sure you will find your way.

When you find the one that’s right for you, put up a progress thread and let the forum help you.

Good luck with whatever you do!


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Read Unscripted!
Dec 13, 2016
South Africa
Thank you for this post - moving people closer to where they want to be is a good feeling.

Being more aware of the challenges that can be solved.
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Pronounced like the Elle in excellent
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Read Unscripted!
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Aug 13, 2020
What a great post @MustImprove, really got me thinking...
This means that you commit yourself to repeated and continuous effort, focused on a problem at hand, until you deliver a satisfactory solution (and ideally a delightful solution) for the person with the problem
So I haven't commited myself to repeated and continuous effort yet, but as I read your post I thought of the times recently I've gotten a 'thank you' for helping someone, or a message of appreciation.

This tends to be when I share my experience of my struggle in regards to my mental health journey. I'm a very actionable thinker so when I talk about it I tend to offer genuine more uncommon advice that, for those open to it, is valuable.

In the past month on Reddit I've got two messages in regard to this:
Hi, I saw your comment talking about your experience with depression. I've also had depression for the majority of my life (13 years too, what a coincidence!) and despite going through therapy and taking meds, you helped alleviate my fears that I'm going through this forever. You made my mind a bit lighter today, so thank you so much! <3
I just wanted to let you know your comment in r/******** had quite an impact on me as I'd never heard anxiety described in that way. The way you tackle those feelings is inspiring and I see what you mean about detaching from those thoughts, never thought of it that way. Just wanted to let you know you're great.
In both cases I suggested them further reading and said thanks, besides that I feel like there's not really anything I could've offered to deliver a(n even more) satisfactory solution.

I'm happy just to help and I get at least one message a month like this so I'm just glad I can lift people's mood/spirits/attitude a little.
…and then, as you keep reading this forum and TMF (for young Jedi, I know you will still read a lot whatever I/we say), you will become more aware of the value that each of your solutions generate.
Despite reading FLF for almost a year now I'm not sure what you mean by this. :blank:
My only nuance is that you get yourself on the road and rolling first, and in my (extremely) humble opinion you do that best by solving the problems you see first. As you roll on, you focus…..and then you scale with the skills!
When I keep my Facebook community active (actually the group portion has 38k members and runs smoothly without me), I get hundreds of messages not quite like the ones above but more along the lines of 'your content really helps me', 'thanks for what you do' (meaning posting), and 'I'm so happy you created this page!' as it solves the problem of Facebook being too negative, but I don't know how to solve their problems in a valuable enough way to monetise it.

I solved a problem I saw, gained hundreds of thousands of supporters, then got stuck. I already solved the problem for them for free, and set the stage for lots of other people to solve the problem in a similar way (for free). I just feel so lost in this regard.

Maybe I'm too positive but outside of the internet I feel like most of the 'problems' I see that I could, technically, solve are based on minor/unnecessary value-skews rather than solving the problem itself, and couldn't actually be a fastlane business.

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