Hard times seldom come without warning but it calls for special skills to see the signs. The changed and sometimes worsened conditions also call for special skills to rebuild success. Principles set out by our columnist, American author, entrepreneur, philanthropist, successful businessman and life coach Tony Robbins give direction.

'I have an especially warm feeling for Russia and I am glad to come here again to learn something new from Russian people and share my knowledge I accumulated through the years of traveling. The Soviet Government invited me in 1983. I travelled from Moscow to Siberia, visited Leningrad, spent time in Kazakhstan. Once I found a huge map in a train and drew all of my life on its back side including my goals and directions. It was the very beginning of my way and all I planned worked out.
If you look back at Russian and Soviet history it becomes obvious that it is a very strong country always back to life and it happens during the centuries again and again. In uncertain times I'd advise businessmen not to waste their energy on what they can't control but to concentrate on what they can. When we can't cope with something we try to run something we can't we can't run economics. We should also remember even if it sounds illogical but toughest times give best opportunities because when everyone else is scared and you maintain your composure and add more value to your business and your clients you will dominate the market.

I started my business in 1977–78 when I was just seventeen-eighteen. That was the time when American economy went through the worst moment for the last forty years. Loan interest rates were on the eighteen percent level so if you wanted to buy something or invest in some business you should had taken money by this crazy percentage. Inflation grew in bursting tempo consuming fell down, no one spent money. And at that moment I became the most successful businessman in my area because I didn't listen to anyone. I didn't give a damn to anything except of what is my business's value to my clients. It's important to remember: winter doesn't last forever even in economy.
The most important thing every leader should know: business is suffocated not by economics but by psychology and incompetence of the head of the company. I believe that in eighty cases of a hundred the failure reason is psychological, say, intellection. If you panic you don't give enough energy to marketing, you try to shrink. But you can't shrink and make success.

Business should be developed even in the toughest times. You should change your way of thinking for it. This is my most important skill
— Tony Robbins

This is my most important skill, my rule number one. Second is to develop the skills needed to run the business and leader's psychology. Third 􀀁 it is important to get stuck on finding out who your ideal client is. Not the one who is your client now but the one who will remain to be one in hard times. You should know him better than you know yourself: what he wants what he is scared of. I always say that life is a dance between of what you want most of all and what you are scared of. If you expand the zone of your wishes and narrow the zone of your fears you'll gain more space for your life. You'll become stronger, you'll become more successful. You should know what your clients want and what you want. You should fit in and refresh. If you don't update in weak economy period you'll start to have troubles. Maybe you will fasten something or make some new value even rising up the price of your product. And don't fall in love with your product because it might ruin you. You should remember Sony Walkman all of the world was listening to the music with those players and for twenty-two years they were the world's number one. Now life of a product like this doesn't last more than six months. The world changes and you can't fall in love with your product or service. You should fall in love with your clients and fit to serve their needs. This is the way to success in any country of the world and in any state of economy.

Same way you should know your "inner client" people who work for you: what they want what their goals are. Really cool companies are living for their mission. And they recruit people who are concerned about it. If you work in Google everyone around you is concerned about structuring information all over the world and they are extremely devoted to this purpose. They work for hours and days trying to understand how to make it happen.
It is very important to encourage people by your own example. And your own personal effectiveness depends on several factors. First of all it is necessary to do something every day to train your brain. In my life tough times I read for thirty minutes every day not in internet or some blog but a book I could drag some new strategy or philosophy from. I could postpone breakfast or lunch but not reading because what you feed you brain with will define the way you think.

The next thing you should do in desperate times is to strengthen your body every day. Braveness and fear are physical phenomena. To show braveness means to find something inside of yourself that is stronger than your fear. To learn how to do that means to use actively your body abilities. Body and physical state transform one's life. I tell it for forty one year already but some few years ago they published a research they called "The Benefit of Power Posing Before a High-Stakes Social Evaluation" in Harvard University. They found out that if you stand like this with arms akimbo favorite pose of super heroes in comics just for two minutes and do nothing else besides or you stretch in the armchair your legs up the testosterone level is rising up to twenty percent man or women doesn't matter. Cortisol stress hormone level lowers twenty five percent as well. Ability to take risky decisions rises in thirty three percent. It's biochemistry. I tell people how to stand, breathe and move the way to change their biochemistry fast. This is not a positive thinking pumping. It is stupid to sit in your garden and think positively: 'No weed, no weed!' I think you should go and weed out. If you see someone who sits relaxed and talks in a weak voice would you like a person like this to lead you? But if you take this man and teach him to move the different way, his biochemistry changes and he feels differently and it is not a selfdeception, it is a revolution in one's life.
After strengthening his mind and body one should find a role model, someone who already became successful and whose experience can be examined to see some logic in it. To find the way to follow is the third step.
Number four: you should start to move immediately instead of think-ing out a genius plan. Do something. If it doesn't work change your tactics. The most successful technology companies use the method of interacting they try something all of the time until they have a result. Same way the plane doesn't follow one direct line it is moved aside by wind and the pilot is correcting its course.

And fifth: when you feel bad help someone who is in the worst position than you. It'll release you from your problems reminding you of the fact that the world is not just "you" but also "us" as well. We feel ourselves better when we understand that life is more than our personal being.
I didn't visit Russia for a very long time and won't judge about the mental difference between Russian and American successful businessmen. But knowing the people's basic needs which don't depend on culture, language or education lets me work successfully in more than one hundred countries: you need to be sure that you can overcome difficulties, not to be sure enough to be excited about the process, to be aware of your significance and being unique, to be loved and understood, to be useful to someone else except of yourself. I tried to find the ways to make this all work and help people develop themselves and I do know what to do to help them change their business and life.