Tag Archives: vision

My Secret To Success


Recently  a lot of people have been asking me the same question – what is the secret behind ALBA’s rapid advancement? As foreigners starting a business in China, we have encountered a lot of challenges that we had to solve by ourselves. At the beginning I thought I didn’t have enough knowledge and experience. Then there was other issues such as cultural differences, language, and finding a partner.  We overcame all these problems by ourselves. After surmounting one challenge after another I came to the realization that something had changed.  As we overcame obstacles, our level of confidence grew.  As our confidence grew, we began to feel that everything was possible. When we started to believe that all things are possible, pieces started to fall together the way we imagined them. Success is a journey of vision, goals, action, taking responsibility for our actions, persistence, and knowledge.



 “ It’s better to have your own vision than to be part of somebody else’s vision”


The greatest secret I discovered during the ALBA journey is that we can be everything we want, but we don’t know it. People don’t dare to have big dreams because they are afraid of failures, because with failure comes criticism. We learned our most precious lessons from our mistakes, and I often wish I made even more mistakes so I could have learned faster.  These are the lesson’s I’ve learned so far:


Be confident in yourself – dare to dream big. Don’t listen to naysayers. Don’t let other people impose their limiting beliefs on you. Don’t nurture your own self-limiting beliefs. Always trust yourself, be positive and enthusiastic. Things happen for a reason that might not be immediately obvious.

It took courage give up on a conventional job to start ALBA, but that turned out to be the hardest part in the process. As soon as I made that decision all the pieces started to fall into place.


“You don’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets”


To dream big is not enough. You must have specific, realistic and measureable goals. In life nothing comes to us if we sit and wait for it to happen. It’s ACTION that differentiates the winners from the losers. Things start in our mind first, then we need to take action and realize it. We are the only ones that are the responsible for our own lives, therefore we must take full responsibility for our actions. The bigger the challenge that you overcome, the more your level of confidence will grow. Motivation grows alongside confidence, and before long, you become unstoppable.  If it seems difficult, refuse to give excuses. Excuses will only slow you down. Be persistent when things get rough. Instead of finding excuses to give up,  take small steps that bring you closer to your goals. Take small steps every day and stay 100 % focused.


Things for us haven’t been easy at all. There were many times toward the beginning that we thought to quit. Every plan had an obstacle, but whenever we took action and remained persistent, the solution was almost always quick at hand. All our failures were lessons that brought us to where we are today. Having overcome so many challenges was what led to our increased self confidence.

“Success is a journey, not a single event”


What really brings success is the motivation to stay focused until success happens. The best thing for maintaining this level of focus is to choose to do something that you really enjoy. If money is your only motivation, then you’ll watch as people break down when the obstacles start lining up. There is a price to pay first.  Sacrifice first, then succeed.  It is never the other way around.  Success is a mindset that needs to be developed. Just keep doing what you know it takes in order to succeed, and when it hits, after all the hard work you’ve done – you won’t be surprised with your success.


It has been close to year since I stopped working for other people.  Vali  left his job a couple months ago. People wonder how we manage to support ourselves.  We know that this is the sacrifice that we have to make in order to stay focused and ensure ALBA’s success.  We both know success is close, and it’s coming soon.


It makes me very proud to see that our confidence has helped to create the ALBA dream and that it has attracted a lot of people who believe in it and are inspired by us. I am very glad to  have found passionate people who are willing to pursue their dreams alongside us. These people are devoted to ALBA and have taken time to do things for our cause even when they are tired from their daily grind.  If nothing else, they still take time to be a part of the community. I am most grateful to see  that our community functions as one big family that cares for each other. We’re expanding every day.

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Yes, but Why T-shirts?

Vali was behind the bar.  He had just poured out a fifth original cocktail and once again, everyone was in awe.  He was able to instantly think up five, unique, mind-blowing cocktail recipes, and he just gave them to the owner… for free.


Pictured: money he’s missing out on.

The question kept running through my mind, “When will he stop giving out his unique  talents and skills as if they were something that everyone else on earth possessed?”  cartoons_superheroe

      He was going to add more detail, but I yelled at him to stop fooling around and get some real work done.

The thought that the man of my life possessed such unique talents, but still seemed so devoid of ambition frustrated the hell out of me. This time I told him “You must wake up and do something with your potential, instead of giving it away for free!”  I laughingly went on ; “If you don’t I will capitalize on each and every of your talents, and turn you into my personal ATM!”

money cow

                                    Or you could say: “My Money Cow”

A few days later, he told me that he was thinking to turn his cartooning skills toward making a unique T-shirt brand and thereby achieve global domination. buy my T-shirts                                          I guess he pictured it like this.

I felt relieved, it sounded a little crazy (especially that part about the T-shirts), but he had finally started thinking about business. I liked the idea a lot and told him that I was willing to give him my support (I’ve regretted saying this many times since).  In my mind we are the “perfect match”  he is a very creative artist, and I know how to exploit him.   I digress, we complement each others’ skills well.  His strengths are my weaknesses and vice versa.   I lose my patience, he finds it.  He loses his keys, I find them.  I’m insanely practical, he’s practically insane.  It works.


                             Besides, someone’s gotta open those pickles.

Yet another one of my goals which I will touch on in depth later is to move into consulting.  What I felt I lacked however was some business experience and personal success. Naturally, I thought that if I can manage our T-shirt brand and make it famous, then the people will take notice and trust me – that’s the best advertising I could ever get.

alba_ moon_writing

          That or some of that sweet, sweet Moon advertising space.

All these years of endless frustration resulting from working for Chinese companies that were preaching professionalism, but in reality showed none. Companies where nobody cared about the personal and professional development of the employees, put an idea into my head.   We started  a T-shirt business for our first entrepreneurship effort, with a great vision to create a fun brand and making a name for ourselves in China,  and giving others the opportunity to join in on the fun. I  wanted to set an example in management for young people to learn by. I want to  motivate and help them to realize their own potential independent from the trap that is the modern corporate world. What if I could build my perfect company? What if I could create a place where employees will learn and develop, and be motivated to work?   I already had the perfect test subject, but getting my fiancé to cooperate was more of a chore than I bargained for….


                                             “Hi, I’m your new cartoonist!”

Next week:  How to Train Your Artist!  A handling and obedience manual for all managers!

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