What Jordan and Chase Discuss:
- Handling debt after graduation.
- Zooming out on the timeline of your career and understanding why patience is key in the long term.
- Why nothing you do is ever wasted. Even if you’re working as a barista at Starbucks, you are building skills that can be applied in other areas later on.
- Why the phrase “Burn the boats” is misleading and unnecessary.
- How to overcome feeling “unemployable” because you have taken a non-traditional path.
- And much more…
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Who are the 15 people you would call if you got laid off today? By digging the wells and building relationships before you need them, you can maintain and reignite dormant connections to create what is essentially an insurance policy for your career. Here on The Jordan Harbinger Show, Jordan teaches these very skills for free in our Six-Minute Networking course (which you can check out here).
On this episode, Jordan switches roles and sits in the interviewee seat while former guest and Chase Jarvis LIVE Show host Chase Jarvis (were you expecting Maury Povich?) asks the questions. Here, we’ll dig into what it takes to push past the mental boundaries that keep you from realizing your full potential. Listen, learn, and enjoy!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
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Sign up for Six-Minute Networking — our free networking and relationship development mini course — at jordanharbinger.com/course!
This Episode Is Sponsored By:
- Glenfiddich: Find out more about the Glenfiddich #Richest25 here
Miss our interview with Read & Riot: A Pussy Riot Guide to Activism author Nadya Tolokonnikova? Catch up with episode 118: Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova | How to Read and Riot here!
Thanks, Chase Jarvis!
If you enjoyed this session with Chase Jarvis, let him know by clicking on the link below and sending him a quick shout out at Twitter:
And if you want us to answer your questions on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at email@example.com.
Resources from This Episode:
- The Chase Jarvis LIVE Show
- Six-Minute Networking
- Chase Jarvis | Cultivating Your Creative Calling | Jordan Harbinger
- Chase Jarvis | Website
591: Chase Jarvis & Jordan Harbinger | Your Network Insurance Policy
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to our sponsor Glenfiddich single malt scotch whisky. You've heard me talking about Glenfiddich. They've been a great sponsor so far here. They're challenging the traditional notions, commonly portrayed in culture, of what it means to be wealthy and live a life of riches. Glenfiddich believes that beyond the material, a life of wealth and riches is also about family, community, values, fulfilling work. These are the values that led Glenfiddich to become the world's leading single malt scotch whisky. Today, I get into some of this with Chase Jarvis, and you'll find out why later on in the episode. More from our partners at Glenfiddich coming up later in the show.
[00:00:31] Coming up next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:34] Chase Jarvis: You had fun at the beginning because you were doing the thing that no one thought you could do, or you weren't sure. And you felt like you were kind of getting away with it. You were getting better, you were engaged, and then you flatlined because you realized that you were good enough to keep playing. You weren't actually challenging yourself. You get called out by your then-girlfriend, now-wife, Jen. Isn't it amazing to have people in your world that can call you on your sh*t. You know, you're saying one thing and doing another, and then you doubled down and you are comparing yourself to what you are capable of and you know what you're capable of inside your head and heart more than others do. And now you're having fun again.
[00:01:17] Jordan Harbinger: Welcome to the show. I'm Jordan Harbinger. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people. We have in-depth conversations with people at the top of their game, astronauts, entrepreneurs, spies, and psychologists, even the occasional rocket scientist, extreme athlete, or tech mogul. Each episode turns our guests' wisdom into practical advice that you can use to build a deeper understanding of how the world works and become a better critical thinker.
[00:01:44] If you're new to the show, or you want to tell your friends about the show and I always appreciate it when you do that, I recommend our starter packs. These are collections of your favorite episodes, organized by topic. That'll help new listeners get a taste of everything that we do here on the show. Just visit jordanharbinger.com/start to get started or to help somebody else get started.
[00:02:03] Today on the show, I usually don't do this, but I appeared recently on an episode of Chase Jarvis Live, it went really well. I was — at a lot of people said I was on fire. I would never use that term to describe myself, but I appreciate all of those who did. It felt like I was able to deliver some great information on networking and relationship development among other topics. Chase is a lot of fun to talk to. Him and I go way back. He's the CEO of CreativeLive, if you've ever seen any of those courses. Our rapport was excellent on the episode. I thought it was worth sharing with you all as well. If you enjoy Feedback Friday and the type of advice and systems thinking from those episodes, I think you'll enjoy this episode as well.
[00:02:39] I assume I plugged Six-Minute Networking a lot during this episode, but I'm going to do it one more time. Opportunities like this fall into my lap because of my network. And I'm teaching you how to build your network over at jordanharbinger.com/course. Most of the guests on our show subscribe and contribute to the course. So come join us, you'll be in smart company where you belong.
[00:02:56] Now, here's me on Chase Jarvis Live.
[00:03:01] You know, it's funny. I used to have a background like everyone else, where I was like, let me get some books up there and then I had a MacBook, but then I thought, "You know, what would chase Jarvis do? He wouldn't have some sloppy ass background with like a staircase and some chairs and like some gym stuff on the floor. I'm going to put a nice background up, especially when I do his show." And then I come here and I'm like, "Thanks for even trying, Chase. Thanks for putting this together."
[00:03:23] Chase Jarvis: This is what makes this a good episode. We're 20 seconds in. Tell us a story, how you describe yourself and an early childhood experience or two that brought you to where you are right now.
[00:03:39] Jordan Harbinger: So right now I focus on interviewing amazing people, kind of like what you're doing right now. And the reason I started, honestly, the reason I started doing — I promised myself I wouldn't laugh at my own jokes and I just can't help it. You can tell I'm a dad now because all my jokes are—
[00:03:58] Chase Jarvis: Yeah.
[00:03:58] Jordan Harbinger: —garbage. Yeah. But, the way this started was I thought I'm teaching, networking at my law school at this point. And the reason I'm doing that is because I figured I was going to get fired from the law firm where I worked if I didn't figure out how to bring in business. And now we know that's an imposter syndrome where you're like, "I'm the person that's slipped through the cracks. They're going to figure me out. How do I make myself scarce? What do I do?" And I started to learn how to network and bring in business for the firm, because that was what the partner said, "Oh, if you want to stick around, you know what you want to bulletproof your career, you've got to generate business for the firm. You don't just keep your head down and work hard because people will pass you." So I took those Dale Carnegie networking classes. I took these — I don't even think there were online learning platforms like CreativeLive back then. I mean, certainly not CreativeLive, but I don't think there was anything to learn online back then.
[00:04:48] Chase Jarvis: You learn online via DVD. They mail you a disc and you put it in a machine, yeah.
[00:04:53] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, yeah. If you even had a DVD player back then, and that started to become me, teaching, networking at bars. And then it was like, well, all the people that want to learn networking from the law school — all the guys were like, "I don't need this. Networking is for old people." And all the women were like, "We need this because the law, especially corporate law, it's a boys club. We need to stick together. We need to figure this out." And that's what got me teaching. That's what got me learning social dynamics. That's what got me interviewing people as well, because I knew I couldn't provide all the content myself, because I mean, who can? Who has that much?
[00:05:29] Chase Jarvis: Yup.
[00:05:29] Jordan Harbinger: And then I thought, you know, I really liked this. It's kind of like being a radio talk show host, which I wanted to do when I was a kid, except now I can do it in this new thing called podcasting. This is 2006. And I'm really enjoying this. Too bad I went to law school instead of broadcasting school, but now it all makes sense, right? Because back then, you had to be put on the radio. You had to be put on a platform. You had to get a creative job by, I don't know, folding tripods or whatever for five years. Now, you can put yourself on.
[00:05:59] I know that's a lot of what you teach at CreativeLive. It's like, "Hey, you don't have to be somebody who is blessed by, who's the—? Like Anna Wintour or whatever, to take photos of people and put them up online or in magazines or edit them or learn these skills. Like you can learn this stuff yourself. You can put yourself on, you build your platform. And then suddenly one day you wake up and Chase Jarvis is talking to you and you go, "I have made it apparently. Like there's people interested in what I'm doing. Who knew? I didn't know this could be my thing." And here it is.
[00:06:29] Chase Jarvis: Well, that you have made it for yourself from law to here. I think what I want to excavate just a little bit is, why lawyer in the first place? And was it actually, did you believe in your heart, that lawyering was the right thing to do? And then when you landed, did you find it, or did you know all along, you were scared to disappoint mom and dad and career counselor and friend, and have a lower, quote, "social status" because you didn't want to be a lawyer, doctor, whatever, et cetera.
[00:07:03] And because the reason I asked this question, you know it because we've talked before, but right now there are thousands of people listening or watching who are asking themselves the same question. You decided not to trade this one, precious life to do what everybody else wanted but I know it wasn't easy because you started out as a Wall Street lawyer. Help me understand this.
[00:07:24] Jordan Harbinger: It is a good thing to excavate, and also I'm stealing the word excavate, because that's a great word for digging down into something. The reason I went to law school was — and there's no way to sugarcoat this. The only reason I went was because after graduating from the University of Michigan, with a degree in like speaking multiple languages, by that point at age 24 or whatever it was when I graduated, I was like, "Hey, I worked for the department of state. I worked at the embassy in Panama. I speak English and Spanish and Serbo-Croatian and German. Like I am highly qualified," and I had no clue how to get a job, no effing clue. And my girlfriend was like, "Hey, why don't you try and get like a hold-over job at someplace nearby in Ann Arbor." And so I started applying to places and I was like, "Let me just apply to places like BestBuy." And I'm applying to BestBuy. And I can go through like round two of interviews, they're like, "We're thinking about hiring you. You're competing with a few people for this position." And I was like, "Great. I want to build computers. I can do customer service." They were like, "Yeah. No, everyone starts off in music. You're going to be selling CDs."
[00:08:26] And I go, "But my friend's little brother, he's 17. He's a sophomore in high school. He works in music," and they're like, "Yeah, he's going to mentor you for the first few months or a year in that position. And then you can move up." And I was like, "I have — what are you talking about? He's 17. He just got his driver's license. What are you talking about? I'm going to be mentored by this kid." And part of it was ego because I was older and I had — but the rest of it was f*cking debt, man. Like I have $68,000 to pay back. I can't make 7.25 an hour. You know, like this isn't going to work. And then I thought, "Okay, I don't know how to get a regular-job job. I don't even know where to start. No one taught us that in school. Hopefully, they're teaching that now. I doubt it.
[00:09:09] And then a bunch of people said, "Why don't you just apply to graduate schools?" And then of course, like your aunt, who's a gym teacher was like, "Well, you like to argue, so you should just be a lawyer," which is not based in reality, but I thought, "Okay, fine. You know, I'll give that a shot. And I applied to law schools, got into a bunch, got scholarships to a bunch. And I thought, "Well, that's a good sign," right? Like if I can get in, I should go. And then I got into Michigan Law. I did not get a scholarship, by the way, to Michigan Law, but that's a good law school. It was like top 10 or something in the whole country at the time. And all of my dad's lawyer, friends were like, "Oh my—" if you got into that school," that's like getting into, I don't know, Harvard Medical School or something probably if you're a doctor or close to it, you, quote-unquote, "have to go." And they loved my international experience. They didn't love my grades or test scores, just to be very, very clear.
[00:09:56] They weren't like, "This guy's brilliant." They were like, "This guy's weird. And we like weirdos at public schools. We've got to diversify our thought here." So I went, but the whole time I was like, "I'm not going to be a lawyer." And I remember my classmates all being like, "I got sad news for you. This is a law school. Everyone here is going to end up being a lawyer." And all of these career people that came in to talk to us, they were like, "How many of you think you're not going to be a lawyer?" And like three hands went up and they were like, "Come talk to me in three years, when you have $128,000 worth of debt, you're all going to become lawyers." And they were totally right. You know, you're idealistic up until the second year you get an internship at a Wall Street law firm. They pay you $30,000 to eat fish and oysters and go see freaking Blue Man Group over the summer. And you go, "Yeah, I'm doing this at least until I pay my debt."
[00:10:44] And so that's what I did. I got that job. Luckily, it was a pretty cool set of guys. Luckily, people were really candid with me about what it's going to take to become a partner. I followed the train of social dynamics and networking and turned it into a dating thing. Ended up moonlighting as a SiriusXM satellite radio talk show host every Friday. And then eventually more during the week. And my law firm, we were doing real estate finance, so this is 2007, halfway through the year, or maybe even early 2008, the economy takes a dive. The first thing to go is real estate finance. So they're like, "Don't worry. You're not fired, probably going to have to lay all of you off in a few months. But in the meantime, here's full pay, full salary, full benefits." And I was like, "You know, I'm doing this podcast, but it started in a basement. I like it. I'm doing satellite radio. People are doing phone coaching with me, or they're trying to like pay me money to train them. I don't know much about that, but I'm going to try and figure that out. Do I want to go and get another law job that I don't want just to continue making the same amount of money? Or am I going to pull that like now or never,"
[00:11:52] This is what inspired — this is so goofy. One of my friends goes, "You know what? We're all getting fired. I'm going to play the guitar at bars because I love music and I might have a music career. This is the time to find out if I have what it takes." And I was like chuckling to myself. And I'm like, "You probably don't. Like odds are, you don't." But then I thought, "You know what? Who am I to say that?" And also maybe I want to do the radio thing and see if I have what it takes. So I did the radio thing and I did the podcast thing.
[00:12:16] And now I'm like, "Wow, I can't believe I even tried to go to law school. Like I get it. It's where want-to-be overachievers congregate when they find out they have no real employment prospects, that's accurate. But the idea that I could do something creative, never fostered in me as a kid, never fostered in most of us as a kid. You know, I'm not special in my neglect or self-neglect of my creative pursuits, but also I never thought of myself as a creative person. And so it never occurred to me that there was a job where I could do something that I liked and then also get paid for it. It just didn't occur to me. And even the people I knew that were working in radio or were working in journalism, they were broke AF, man. They were not making any money.
[00:13:00] And so I thought like, well, why would I trade a hundred-thousand-dollars-a-year law job for a $25,000 a year journalism job? Like that's a dumb move. I didn't know. You could do both and make money doing both. You know, they neglected to tell me that there was a position, like the Larry King of podcasting ink road or like that podcasting was a thing or that radio could be lucrative. Because truthfully, man, you know this, photography is your thing. The top one percent probably make a bunch of money. The rest of the people, they work at other places to make their living and they do photography as a hobby. So it was a good bet that I wasn't going to be able to monetize the thing that I loved.
[00:13:36] Now, you don't have to wait for somebody to put you on. Like I said before, you can put yourself on which increases the odds. You're no longer rolling the dice and hoping that somebody picks your card, right? That's a mixed metaphor, but you get me. Now, you're going, "I don't have to roll the dice. I'm carving my own dice. There are six sides to this die and I'm carving a six on every single side. I'm going to be fine," but you couldn't do that before. And so you and I kind of came up during this time where you either got really F and lucky, or you were super freaking talented. Now, you can be a hard worker and build your talent and build your skill and you have a reasonable chance of success. A pretty good one, honestly, just given the amount of time, if you're willing to zoom out long enough on the time.
[00:14:23] Chase Jarvis: I think you just hit the nail on the head there in that last sentence. If most people, if they are doing the thing, for you, podcasting, or for someone else who's listening as a designer or an entrepreneur or whatever, if you can zoom out a little bit and say, "Cool, I'm going to put one foot in front of the other and do this at first as a hobby. And then as a side hustle," like that's actually, I would say, maybe not the preferred because people are impatient. But that's actually the most realistic. And I actually do the same thing. I don't know. I mean, it sounds like for you, there was a little moonlighting and then there was the thing. Most people think you're like Tony Robbins says, "Burn the boats, so I've burned it — you know, I put a second mortgage on my house, quit my job. And I'm all in." Ask Richard Branson, Richard Branson will say, "This idea of all in is actually really stupid."
[00:15:11] Jordan Harbinger: I agree with that. I haven't heard him say that, but I a hundred percent agree with that.
[00:15:14] Chase Jarvis: Yeah. It's like managing the downside and continuing to make progress. And that's why that last sentence that you said stuck with me. It's like, "If you can zoom out far enough and look at this timeline as I'm going to continue to put one foot in front of another toward the thing." I'm harkening back to our conversation on your show about creative calling. You're just walking this path and when the wind's at your back, great jog, run, sprint even, but that's not how 99 percent of the people that you and I either have on the show or are friends with, or it sounds like neither of in our case, it didn't work like that.
[00:15:52] Jordan Harbinger: No.
[00:15:52] Chase Jarvis: And that is the myth that I think you and I ought to continue working to dispel. I know you do a good job on that in your show.
[00:16:00] Jordan Harbinger: I agree, man. Look, I think what people do when they're in our position sometimes is they go, "Oh man, you know, it's pretty unsexy to say, I did a podcast that nobody cared about for a really long time. And then I pivoted to do this and I was working at some law firm and then I switched to whatever job. And then I was doing odds and ends and I was broke for a while." That's not really great. So what I'm going to do is like collapse this nine-year period, or this 12-year period into this, like flash in the pan and I'm going to skip over all that and then just go. And then, "I believed in myself and then the universe started raining money into my bank account," and it's like that doesn't help someone right now who's at home figuring out focal length of lenses and saving money for their first or their second lens because they're like 1500 bucks or whatever those things cost. And they're doing the barista thing in their day job. It doesn't help that person because that person goes, "What am I doing wrong? Why am I not getting success? And I've been doing this for three years."
[00:16:58] When we tell the truth, we go, "Three years? You've got another decade before you should start worrying about lack of progress. You know, you're, you're doing fine if you're making a single dollar doing your hobby after work." If you're in this for three years and somebody's paying you for anything and it's just Saturday afternoons, you're probably killing it. Don't believe the person who's like, "Yeah, I just picked up a camera. And now I'm like in Vogue Magazine's Roundup for 2021." Like that's not real. And when you see people that are like that and you dig deep enough and you put two whiskies in them, you find out it's their aunt who is the editor of the magazine that put them on. Like they didn't just get lucky. And sure, some people get like. That's true, but most people don't. Don't rely on it, discard it. Don't worry about it. There's always time to catch up.
[00:17:45] A lot of times, people who get lucky early, they peter out because they don't have often enough work ethic to keep it going. And also maybe they're in over their head. To speak to Richard. Branson's point about going all in and the timeline thing we just mentioned, you don't want to go all in, right? Because if we say, "All right, look, I need to zoom and stretch out my timeline eight more years." You don't have eight years if you just quit your job. And you're like, "Yeah, now, I'm going to only live, eat, and breathe photography or podcasting." Now, you got eight months because your savings are running out. So you have stress that was added to the mix. You have pressure. Now, your runway is lit on fire and quickly running out. Why would you do that to yourself? Because somebody on Instagram, some influencer was like, "Burn the boats, go all in." That person didn't do that probably.
[00:18:34] That person did not do that and when I see — I'm trying not to mention any names — when I see these influencer guys be like, "Burn the boats, go all in." I'm like, "You worked at your dad's freaking convenience store for like two decades. Before you jumped off into this. You didn't burn any boats. You ain't burned a thing. Why are you telling kids to move out of their house with their parents? This is unrealistic and it sounds good, but it is garbage. And what you're doing is setting people up for massive amounts of stress, and many people can't handle that and they quit. It's much better to build a little bit at a time and go, "You know, I probably could have done that in 10 years instead of 15." You want that? Not, "Well, I burned out in two years because I ran out of money and now I'm working, raking leaves and I hate my life." Like don't do that to yourself.
[00:19:18] Chase Jarvis: Absolutely true. And here's the thing at some point, I think this idea of burn the boats, you actually will face, fear and say, "Gosh, am I really good enough to go all in on this podcasting thing or on this design thing or leave my nine to five and do my five to nine and maybe still make some money on the side doing some other things to make sure my bills are paid?" But there is still a fear of moment. There is still a leap. It's just a leap with a small L and it's not a — "I don't know anything about this. I'm going to have to get a second mortgage on my house and quit my job." Don't worry. The leap is still there. There's still a leap at the end of your sort of experimentation period, but you just want to minimize the amount of variables.
[00:20:00] And I've heard you talk about this a lot. I'm going to share this or try and reshape this conversation from the generic to you specifically, I've watched you pivot a couple of times. I've watched you focus and you know, the last time I looked at your 9,000 five-star ratings on your podcast and it was in the top 10 in self-development.
[00:20:25] So is pivoting — could you say that pivoting and navigating is a good thing? Did it help you get to where you are or did it slow you down? And were you the classic person that did the — what we just talked about, like, "I did it in 15. I probably could have done it in 10," or do you attribute some of your success to actually being sort of like water and trying this thing, figuring it out, realizing what didn't work, "I wanted to have a different business," or how ought we think of it?
[00:20:56] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. That's a good question because I just thought about this recently as well. You know, it's really tempting to go, "Man, if I hadn't spent all this time building a coaching company and talking about dating and relationships," which is what I did for like the first 11 years of podcasting, "Man, if I hadn't spent that time, I probably would be so much further ahead, where The Jordan Harbinger Show would be so much further ahead." And then I go, "Wait a minute. I spent 11 years interviewing people, coaching people. So now when I'm interviewing people, I might not be coaching them, but I'm using a coaching skill set to tease information out or ask them more specific questions or read between the lines," which is like 99 percent of what coaching is. It's like someone tells you something and you go, "Hmm, what do you really mean? What is that?"
[00:21:38] And every Friday we do Feedback Friday, which is an advice show because people write in with these listeners' questions, if I hadn't had a decade plus of coaching experience, I don't think I'd be able to go, "Huh. Well, you know, you say this, but I think maybe you mean this other thing." You know, I wouldn't necessarily be able to do that. And that has been a great skill set, a great addition to the skill, and the most popular episodes we have — you know, I might have somebody on who's like a famous television star or a movie star or a famous entrepreneur, that episode gets as many downloads or slightly less as every single week's run of the mill me giving advice about somebody escaping a cult or trying to negotiate their salary. Those are the most popular episodes, which tells you, all right, people like the interviews on The Jordan Harbinger Show. But what they really like is for me to go into someone's letter and be like, "You know, you said this, but I think you kind of mean that. And also you really should be thinking about this other thing." I would never be able to do that if I hadn't spent 11 years coaching.
[00:22:36] And it's very tempting to look up and go, Man, you know, I've been editing video for a decade, but I'm really passionate about photography. And I finally jumped into photography. And, you know, I wish I'd done this the whole time. I wasted all this time editing video," but then if you talk to that person, they go, "Oh, well, you know, I'm really good already with lighting because I've been editing video. And you know, I'm really good already with," I don't know what you call it in photography, but like camera lens angles and all that, "Because I've been editing video for so long and you know, I'm pretty good at getting the right angle on a person or like getting the right emotional feel for photo because I've been editing video and I've seen those frames, which are essentially photos. And I know which ones look the best."
[00:23:14] So you have a hard time convincing me that you wasted 10 years editing video when you know, intuitively and you have a great grasp on the software needed for making changes in frames and things like that, that is hardly wasted time. Now, could you have gotten that way to where you needed to be in five years and then jumped into photography? Maybe. It's tempting to say you could have but you don't really know that, right? Like, "Yeah. Maybe I could have pivoted into different interviews on The Jordan Harbinger Show earlier than 11 years in. But really could I have? Or would they have been kind of like mediocre crap for a while instead of what they are, which is ideally pretty good.'
[00:23:53] You know, like you just don't know when you look backwards, you can't really see the terrain very well because you're already like maybe on the top of the mountain. So everything looks like a straight line and you go, "How did it take me so damn long to get there?" But when you're on the ground, you realize there's a lot of hills, there's a lot of valleys. There's the shorter peaks, you know, that you thought you were on before. And the terrain is not flat. It just looks flat when you're up really high. And that's a problem because you see other people talking about their journey and they go, "Yeah, this terrain it's flat. I don't know what your problem is. Why has it taken so long? Go all in, burn the ships, et cetera, et cetera," or, "You know, you don't really need this experience," or you're wasting your time doing this." It's very difficult for me — you'd have a hard time convincing me even that making, if you're making freaking coffee right now at Starbucks and you go, "This is a waste of my time." I bet if you really sat down and thought about what you were good at and what skills you're getting out of it you'd go, "Well, I have client service experience because I'm making coffee. I'm good at dealing with difficult people. We get an a-hole every freaking day here at Starbucks." so when you're a freelance video editor or something like that, you're bringing all of those barista skills in there, whether you know it or not.
[00:25:02] So nothing you're doing now is truly a waste of your time, unless you hate every second of it, and you also are refusing to learn outright. Which is why your attitude is so important going into anything, because it'd be easy to be that guy at the coffee store who goes, "You know what? I hate this. And I hate everyone here and I'm not learning anything." That is not really the right way to look at any experience that you're doing, because it'd be so easy to do that with every single job. And it's just not the case.
[00:25:29] Chase Jarvis: That my friends is a masterclass in how to think about this transition that you're in right now. Right now, you're jogging on the path, that you're sitting on the park bench, or in your car commuting. And you think it's different, it is exactly what Jordan just said. The phrase that I use is no effort is ever wasted. I think you said that five times and this belief that you somehow are discarding a part of you, whatever the hard part is that you're in right now, even if it's not doing the thing, but you're preparing to do the thing, even if it's thinking about having the conversation with your wife, your spouse, your partner, about leaving, those cycles are actually part of the process. And everyone wants to short circuit the process. And if you were listening for the last five minutes on Jordan's rant there, that defines what success looks like for you. You are on that path right this minute.
[00:26:23] Now you said a couple things in there, speaking of excavating, I want to excavate just a little further because you casually mentioned 11 years in.
[00:26:33] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:26:34] Chase Jarvis: So just to be clear, what it takes to get 9,000 five-star reviews on your podcast and to host radio shows and have your own podcast with legendary guests. And I want to get into a couple of specific guests in a second here, because you've had a couple that doozies. 11 years, how long did it take you, in your 11 years in, where you started having fun doing that?
[00:26:57] Jordan Harbinger: So that's a good question because—
[00:26:59] Chase Jarvis: I'm a professional.
[00:27:00] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, the current Jordan Harbinger Show that has 9,300 to be very specific reviews as of this morning. Not that I check every single day, at least twice. That's three years old, the show I had before that had, I don't know, 14,000 or something like that and it was over 11 years. I started having fun podcasting on day one through day, I don't know, 1000. And then I had less fun for several years because I was like, "Oh, I've got to do this way. And I'm unhappy. Look where I am in relation to other people, I should be doing this. I should be doing." And I ruined my hobby by making it a job and then taking a negative attitude towards it instead of celebrating where I was looking at how far behind I was. Now, that's good for lighting a fire under your butt and making sure that you move faster, but you really — and I didn't realize this at the time — you really do need to balance comparing yourself to others for motivation, with comparing yourself to others, because you're just self-flagellating and beating yourself up constantly and whipping yourself every day and going, "I'm never going to be as good as Charlie Rose," who's like 60 at the time that I probably started podcasting or 55 and has been doing it for 35 years. You make all these unfair comparisons and things like that. And then 11 years in when I started The Jordan Harbinger Show, so the current iteration of the podcast, I had been having fun since year seven.
[00:28:28] And I remember it because on my seven year anniversary of doing the previous show, I had this guest on Robert Greene is an author who wrote 48 Laws of Power. And a lot of people probably know who he is. And I was like, "I can't mess this up. This is Robert, freaking, Greene." And I got all new equipment and I worked to learn the equipment. And then I read his whole book and then I read his other book. And these things are like 600 freaking pages long. It's Robert Greene. He doesn't write 200 pages, you know? So I'm taking notes—
[00:28:53] Chase Jarvis: They are dense, they're dense books too.
[00:28:55] Jordan Harbinger: They're dense. You can't mess with these. These are not like, oh, here's a really long story. It's like, no, no, no. This is like 600 pages and half of it, the end is footnotes and that's 200 more pages. So I read these books, took a bunch of notes, did the interview. And at the end, I said, "Thank you so much. This was really good." And he goes, "Why did this take so long? We've been talking by email for like five years." And I said, "I didn't want to mess it up. You're a really good author. I don't want to waste your time." And he said, "I've done a lot of media, and this is one of the best interviews that I've ever done." This is seven years into me doing the show. So that told me, "Well, if Robert Greene says that it was good, then I'm probably pretty good at this."
[00:29:33] And I remember sitting there and going, "I have to do everything different." And I told my girlfriend at the time, now-wife, her name's Jen. I go, "Jen, Robert Greene said this is one of the better interviews that he's done." She goes, "Well, what did you do different?" I go, "Well, I've read all the books. And I took all the notes," and she goes, "You probably should start doing that for every episode of your show." And I went, "I can't read the book for every author that comes on the show. I can't prep like that." And she goes, "Okay. I mean, I guess it's just a choice on which shows you want to do that for them, which shows you don't." And then I remember sitting down and going, "I have a choice whether I want to do this really, really well, every single time and work really hard, or just do crappy ones and then do some good ones. I can't keep lying to myself and telling me that I can go 15 percent, 20 percent effort and get a hundred percent results." And she goes, "Yeah. I mean, I used to brag about how you don't need to read the book because you can wing it. And everybody's like down with that," and I go, "Yep. I'm faking it." And even if not everybody knows, if I'm the only person that knows, I'm not like respecting the craft to put it in, kind of an overly poetic way.
[00:30:32] If I really want to fulfill my potential as an interviewer, journalist, whatever you want to call it, I actually have to put the work in. Surprise, surprise, like that's how that works. So I started from that point on, I was like, "I have to read every book from every person that comes on the show. I have to do like 10 hours of prep for every guest on The Jordan Harbinger Show." And if I'm two, three hours in and I go, "This is boring. Shoot me." I have to cancel that interview because I'm not going to do a good show. And this is what true professionals do. They probably throw out a thousand photographs. They say, "This was a crap session and the lighting sucked," and you delete 45 hours worth of work and planning and airfare and hotel and model fees or whatever, and location fees. You throw that crap in the garbage because it's not your best work or it's not good enough to put your name on it.
[00:31:19] And when I started doing that, I realized this is actually way more fun because every time I do a show, or almost, I'm like up against that curve, where I go, "This is good," and I did something better this time. And I got a really good interview out of Chase Jarvis. And you know, he liked it because he was smiling and laughing. And like the producer in the sound booth, who's not a guy that just works for me, he came out and was like, "Wow, that was good. I liked this Chase Jarvis guy," and then wants to talk about the content. Like that's how, you know, you did a good job.
[00:31:51] I remember there was a spot when I wasn't having fun. I wish I didn't have to admit this right now, but I would be like, checking my email during the interview. You could hear me typing, the person would say something and I go, "Cool. So, uh—" and then I look at the list of questions I had before. And I go, "So tell me the story about how you got interested in photography." You know, you could just — I was just checked out, man, and I hated it. And the reason isn't because I didn't like podcasting or interviewing, because I wasn't challenging myself. And I wasn't in that red line zone where you're in like the top 10 percent of your own ability.
[00:32:30] Forget everyone else's ability. You want to be in that like top 10 percent, top five percent of your own ability. So if you do a photo shoot and everything sucks, but you're like, "The lighting, man, I crushed the lighting. It was so good. Look at that lighting. Too bad, the model sucks. And my shots were oft and the angles are weird and I use the wrong lens, but like the lighting. You can take that victory and you can be like, "I'm getting better at this." And then you delete everything because it's not that good, but like you know you're getting better at it. That crap is fun. Like that's fun. Not having a celebrity on. That's a treat, but the fun is getting better at the craft. Like not getting a famous person to stand next to you for an hour. Like that's a treat, that's it.
[00:33:10] Chase Jarvis: You should just rewind that last section. If you're watching right now or listening on your walk, because again, the two absolute missiles just hit right in the temple as you're walking down your little path right now, or in your commute. Fewer trues have been spoken in that amount of time in the last eight minutes. I want to review, you had fun at the beginning because you were doing the thing that no one thought you could do or you weren't sure. And you felt like you were kind of getting away with it. You were getting better, you were engaged. And then you flatlined because you realize that you were good enough to keep playing you but you weren't actually challenging yourself. There's a flat period where you're checking your email during interviews, not preparing, bragging that you don't have to prepare.
[00:34:02] You get called out by your then-girlfriend, now-wife, Jen. Isn't it amazing to have people in your world that can call you on your sh*t? And like how much do you owe Jen for your current level of happiness and success and fulfillment? Because she's like, "I don't know. I'm just — it doesn't sound like what we said the other day. And you know, you're saying one thing and doing another," and then you double down and you are comparing yourself to what you are capable of and you know what you're capable of inside your head and heart more than others do. And now, you're having fun again.
[00:34:40] Jordan Harbinger: You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest — well, me on Chase Jarvis Live. We'll be right back.
[00:34:46] This episode is sponsored in part by Glenfiddich. Glenfiddich breaks from the single malt scotch whisky norm, and helps redefine what it means to be rich. It's so easy to get bogged down these days in material success. But the currency of the new rich is getting more time and enjoyment out of what we've already got. And I love experiences, but also I got to shout out to my family here, not just Jen and my kid, but my parents, man. They are — you know, when you're young, you think they're really lame and then you grow up and you realize that's not true. And I got a good relationship with my parents. They're both still around. They're involved in charity. They treat people right. They're not big on materialism. It's just, you know, I kind of lucked out right there. And I realized that that is much better than being raised with millions of dollars and 10 different cars. And I really do value that. And I think it's important to realize those kinds of wins do really make for a rich life. Back to Glenfiddich, Glenfiddich was the first brand to open its distillery to visitors, essentially starting whisky tourism to Scottish distillers. Glenfiddich is also known for its numerous product and distilling process innovations that have shaped the category over the years. It's no wonder Glenfiddich is the number one selling single malt scotch in the world.
[00:35:51] Jen Harbinger: Skillfully crafted, enjoy responsibly. Glenfiddich 2021 imported by William Grant and Sons Inc, New York, New York.
[00:35:57] Jordan Harbinger: Thank you so much for listening to and supporting the show. All of the codes, the discounts, the URLs, the special deals. They're all in one place. We recently redesigned this page. It should work really well on your phone or your desktop, jordanharbinger.com/deals. Definitely let me know if it doesn't work well because we've got to fix it. Please consider supporting those who support us and make this show possible.
[00:36:17] And don't forget, we have worksheets for many episodes. If you want the drills and the exercises talked about during the show, those are all in one easy place. And that link is in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com/podcast.
[00:36:29] Now back to me on Chase Jarvis Live.
[00:36:32] You said something that made me think, right? You have to have people around you to call you out on your sh*t, but also you have to be able to do that to yourself. Because there's a lot of folks, there's a lot of people that get into that. I don't know if it's a creative ride or whatever you want to call it, but let's say that you are a musician and the first day you play your first piano gig or whatever, you're like, "Wow. I can't believe I'm getting paid to play the piano. I'm doing this on the weekends, I'll do it after work. Now, I'm getting paid to play the piano. This is great." And then let's see you become a professional pianist and you're playing in a jazz bar, there's going to be a certain time where you go, "I don't want to go to the bar. It smells in there and I'm tired," but you go there and you play the piano, but you're not really, you might have a smile on your face because you have to, but you're kind of just like, let that tip jar fill up and get me the F out of here. That's fine to have a day like that.
[00:37:26] But when you start doing that all the time, that's bad for you. It's bad for your creativity. It's bad for your mental health. You're stuck, you're stuck. But then if you go, "You know there's these players that do these—" I don't know anything about the piano, but there're these players that play, I don't know, let's say they played 1.5 times faster than everyone else. And he's got this great energy, but I don't know how to do that. And then you start taking lessons from some amazing jazz pianist over Skype for 50 bucks an hour. And he's like, "No, you got to move, the way you do it as you move your hands faster," or whatever. That's the obvious solution to play the piano faster. And he gives you some techniques and then you're going to this jazz bar and you're like, "I'm going to try that," and you try it and then you start to get it. And you're like, "Hell yeah, I'm getting it." Now, you go there and you look forward to going there because you go, "I'm going to try that one song. That's faster that I kind of always messed up before."
[00:38:16] And you can even say to the audience, "All right. I'm going to try a song and this is a fast song and I almost never get it right. Let's see if I get it right but if I mess up no laughing," and everyone sort of like laughs and claps and says, "You can do it," right? And you play that song and you get it. And you know when you get it, because you smile to yourself and the audience is going crazy because they figured that that's the part that you never get. And you're stoked. Now, you're having so much fun again. Why? Not because the people are cheering for you. Not because you just have this new skill, but because you challenged yourself and you jumped over a hurdle that you thought was too high for you. You're in the same smelly ass bar. There's still sticky crap beer on the floor. Your tip jar is still weak AF because it's a college area. Nobody has any money, right?
[00:38:59] The only thing that changed was you and the way that you're attacking this creative pursuit and that makes it all worth it. It makes it all way more fun and it makes you want to stick with it instead of get a side job as a barista, because you're not improving and you hate going to that same place, right? Like people do that in their job. And it doesn't matter if you're in a creative pursuit or you're an accountant or a lawyer, you can challenge yourself and you can get in that sort of like that red zone, that top 10 percent of most people in my career, my field can't do this. Those are the areas that you attack.
[00:39:33] And if you do that two or three times, you're skill stacking, right? You might never be in the top one percent piano, photography, podcasting. You might never get there. But what if you're in the top 10 percent of each of those, not many people are in the top 10 percent in two, three different areas. They're not now. You're one of the only people in the world that has qualifications in those three areas. If you can combine those, now you can make that top one percent money.
[00:39:58] Chase Jarvis: That is just so much wisdom there. How do you keep going when it seems no one around you is paying attention to your work even when you're putting yourself out there? How do you stop feeling that you're pathetic at your craft because of that?
[00:40:16] Jordan Harbinger: There's a big difference between being good at something and being good at marketing something. There are a lot of people that are really good at social media and showing that they have fun stuff on YouTube. Let us just use YouTube because this is such an easy, low hanging fruit. Some of the most popular YouTubers, they jump on tables full of food. They blow things up with diet Coke and Altoids or Mentos or whatever. They jump out of closets and scare people—
[00:40:49] Chase Jarvis: Now somebody's going to try Altoids and it's not working.
[00:40:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. They're like,"This is not — Jordan is a liar. I bought a lot of Altoids. I want my money back." There's a lot — actually Altoids might work. I bet they do.
[00:40:59] Chase Jarvis: Yeah, they might probably do. I don't know.
[00:41:00] Jordan Harbinger: But like there's people doing that. Are those people super skilled, innovative creators? I mean the first people to do that maybe were, but the rest of them are clones and they're playing the Google algorithm. Those people are getting paid, probably they're doing okay. They don't have a, quote-unquote, "real job" because they're making that sweet, sweet diet Coke Mentos money on YouTube. That's not necessarily a craft. That's going to make somebody super happy. But if you are really dope at flower arranging, but there's not really a market for it that you're addressing because you're just like uploading it to the Internet and the algorithm hasn't blessed you and you have 18 followers on Instagram because you don't know how to market it. That has nothing to do with your ability as a creator.
[00:41:44] So decouple the marketing ability from your craft or creative ability. Now you may have to learn how to market. You may have to learn how to get more experience, getting your work out there, but don't for one second — when you're asking yourself, "Am I good at this?" Don't look to the amount of clicks you have to decide that. Because this is Google's algorithm, YouTube's algorithm saying who is popular, right? Like there are dogs that have more followers on Instagram than I will ever have on any platform on all my platforms, combined Paris Hilton's dogs. Are they great at anything? Debatably not really? But there's an addressable market there.
[00:42:27] Now, it would be pretty damn depressing if I decided that I had to be more popular than whoever the algorithm favored that day in order to value my own work. So you should be leveling up where you are in your craft all the time, and you should be dipping your toes in and working on the marketing stuff. But don't for one second, confuse those two and think that they're the same thing. Because people who do that, they're depressed AF when they don't have the following they want because they think they're not good at something. And then when they are popular, they think that they're good at something, but they're not doing sh*t. They're putting Mentos in freaking diet Coke bottles. There is no skill to that after a while, right? That's it. You're diluting yourself at both points on that spectrum. When you're bad at it and when you're good at it, you're lying to yourself on both of those points. Where do you want to be? You don't want to be anywhere on that spectrum. You want to have two separate grading scales, one for the craft and one for the marketing. And it's okay to be not good at both, frankly, as long as you're improving.
[00:43:26] Chase Jarvis: Yeah. I think that last thing is important as long as you're improving and like this idea, success's alchemy, right? It's two parts this, one part leg of newt, eye of hawk in a weird way, there's timing. There's — here we are online learning, having its day in the sun. I've been digging this ditch for 10 years.
[00:43:44] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:43:46] Chase Jarvis: There are external forces, but making your own dice to the point that you made earlier, stacking the deck in your favor. There's all kinds of metaphors that I think we could reach back to, but this idea of always getting better of comparing yourself to what your capable of. How are you telling people that, for example, you didn't want to air their podcast interview if you noticed that it wasn't a high enough quality? And I'm going to expand the footprint of that question for a little bit, how much of your success has been, or could you attribute to having tough conversations either with other people or I'm going to include with yourself?
[00:44:25] Jordan Harbinger: First of all, having tough conversations with yourself, that was like the example that I gave when I talked to Jen in year seven, I'm on year 14 now. So seven years ago, I said, "Can I continue to not really read the books and still do good?" And she's like, "You can do okay." And I was like, "Do I want to just do okay?" You know, that was a tough conversation because it was like, I have to rearrange my whole life so that I read more. And at the time I was not a reader. Now, I'm a reader. But back then, I was like, ah, this is brutal. I had to come up with different habits. I had to rearrange my time, those difficult conversations.
[00:44:56] I hate to sound cheesy, but that's like where you squeeze the real juice out of your craft and out of life, right? You might be using a bunch of stuff. Let's say to bring a photography example in, right? Let's say you're really awesome with like a point and shoot disposable camera. And that's how you got started because you're in the '90s and that's all you could afford. And you're using these film cameras and then your grandfather gives you his old, I don't know, Pentax or whatever. And you're using that. And you're like, "I'm so good at this." And then people go, "Hey, you know, DSLRs are the future. And you've got to get better with these lenses and you got to know how to edit," and you go, "I don't really want to learn that. That's going to take a ton of time," but then you got to sit down and go, "Am I really going to be really good at this unless I learn all that stuff?" And then you sign up for CreativeLive immediately because that's where all the learning knowledge is for all the software and all these different things. And you realize that you are getting better because you had that tough conversation with yourself.
[00:45:47] Having tough conversations with others, that does happen. Ideally, it happens a little bit less. Always take the blame if you — let's say you are doing a podcast with somebody and you record the conversation and it's horrible, you don't say, "Listen, Chase. You just didn't do well. That was not good. You're just not fun, man. I'm sorry." Like you don't do that. You say, "Chase, I was not prepared adequately for this and I'm ashamed, but I really don't want to air it because it's not going to make either of us look good. I would be honored to do this again at another time. I will prepare better, but I don't want to waste your time rescheduling right now. I want to come back in a year when I've had a chance to really revamp everything." And they might be like, "You just wasted a bunch of my time. I don't ever want to talk to you again."
[00:46:31] And that's fair. That's why I always advise when people start something like this, I go, "Don't go for the Richard Branson episode number five," right? I don't want to say pay your dues, but you got to put skills in when people go, "Oh, I have a great network of guests I can get for the podcast." I go, "Don't call any of them yet."
[00:46:47] Chase Jarvis: Because you're not good.
[00:46:48] Jordan Harbinger: You're not good to do like 30 shows with your friends and your family and people that don't even care and are never going to check if the episode comes out and you can delete like 20 of those 30, and then you have your first 10 and it looks like you may be kind of know what you're doing. That's what you should be doing. Those are the hard conversations. And also it's tough to do that because you go, "Wait, you're saying put in 30 hours of recording with five hours of prep, three hours of prep for each one, and then just delete them." Yes. That's what I'm saying. That's exactly what I'm saying. It's kind of like going to the gym and working out before you get in a boxing ring. It's generally a pretty good idea. You're welcome to go into the ring and get punched twice and get knocked out and have to go to the hospital. But it's probably better if you know a little bit about what you're doing beforehand.
[00:47:32] Chase Jarvis: So true, you know, and I'm speaking of prep, I read a bunch of interviews and it seems like there's this theme of freedom. I'm going to quote a line from the Forbes conversation. "What can you do to avoid some of these things early in your career? Create freedom for yourself." So whether that's the ability to have hard conversations with yourself or others, this sort of this notion of doing the thing that you were supposed to be doing, working on that craft. How important — is this important for you, Jordan, this concept of freedom? Or are you advocating that what anyone is doing when they're pursuing something that they are good at and passionate about and having tough, honest conversations with themselves not just around them, is freedom you're your main vector in life? Or is this a common theme for everyone who's trying to pursue their dreams?
[00:48:27] Jordan Harbinger: That's a good one. It's tough. Right? Because when I think about that — when I buy time with phrases, like that's a good question. I mean, for me, I started off as unemployable. I don't know how many other people out there can identify with this. Right? But you go, "Wait, I'm going to have to have a boss that tells me what to do." Okay. That's an immature outlook. Of course, I need people to tell me what to do, but the whole imposter syndrome of working on Wall Street, "I'm going to get fired. This isn't working for me," that layer of stress was hanging over me.
[00:48:55] So I started by thinking, what can I do where I control my own sort of destiny here so that I don't get kicked off the boat, kicked off the island before I figured out what to do. And then as you get better and more evolved in your craft and your career and your business, you start to want freedom because you go, "Well, wait a second. Why am I on lockstep pay with all these other people doing the same thing, except I'm working harder. I'm doing more, I've got more skill. I'm generating business for the firm I'm doing — I should be getting more. So I always sort of marched to the beat of my own drummer. And I think a lot of creative people are like that.
[00:49:29] Again, I never thought of myself as creative, but I would imagine that somebody who is watching CreativeLive courses and watching Chase Jarvis Live here right now on YouTube or Facebook or wherever. Those are people that are not necessarily thinking, no. I want to work in an organization with a rigid hierarchy that always delivers the exact same results for everyone, because that's the easiest path. Like these are people who have chosen difficult paths because they want to do something that they love generally speaking. That becomes freedom because whether you succeed or you fail, that is of your own making, a lot of the time, I mean, you know, things can happen to you and to your business to be fair, but you have the choice whether to get back up and do it again, or try all over again.
[00:50:14] And that's both terrifying and also extremely liberating. And now that I'm 41 years old and I've got a kid and I'm married and things like that, I look at this and I go, "Wow, thank goodness. I didn't just work in a regular job because now—" What's that phrase, chase, where they always say this at like entrepreneur meetups and stuff, or like EO, they say, "Being a business owner or entrepreneur is like living here life for years like nobody else will, so that you can live the rest of your life. Like nobody else can." Does that make sense? Am I getting that right? Something along those lines, right?
[00:50:45] Chase Jarvis: Yeah. You just pulled that out of nowhere. Wow.
[00:50:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. You basically punish yourself for a long time because you know you're onto something. And then later on you go, "Oh, I can take like three months off every year or I can retire at age 50 or 45 if I want to." Or, "I can only do things that I like doing because I'm in charge now." But you have to really set that up for yourself. It helps to know that early on. So you don't wake up one day and go, "I'm so sick of running us off to our company." It's like, "Well, cool, good thing. You did that for 15 years. And now you're the boss." Like you got to think about that stuff ahead of time and plan it out. It's tough, but it helps to be able to do that.
[00:51:23] Chase Jarvis: Yeah. 10,000 hours of work to the starting line. That's what I believe. That's the get in the door. Let's use pro golf because it's a weird esoteric game.
[00:51:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yes.
[00:51:35] Chase Jarvis: That there's only 300 people that are actually on the tour. Just take that as—
[00:51:40] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:51:40] Chase Jarvis: I think that might be true. I think it might be even less than that, but there are several tours, but the main one, and they're not looking around for high fives because they put in 10,000 hours. That's to get too remotely possible to be differentiated in your space. And you can argue, there are all kinds of hacks and I'm going to do this and that, but nobody that I know who hacked to their way there has longevity and staying power and is a true authority and a badass in any of these endeavors because when they did, they hacked their way in there. They got their foot in the door. Then they realized all the stuff that they skipped is actually really, really valuable. So it goes back to the point of 10,000 hours again. This is a little bit of a euphemism for just a lot of hard work to get there. Like as soon as you cut those corners, you realize that, "God, I need a different way of learning those same lessons," and you end up going back.
[00:52:37] This idea of shortcuts it's temple. And I'm not saying that don't go fast because you know, urgency is fantastic. I want to get good. And I'm willing to put in extra time in order to do that. Like, no one's going to fault you for that, but expecting that you are somehow so gifted or blessed by some other mechanism that you don't have to work is where I don't want people to make a bet.
[00:53:07] Jordan Harbinger: You know, that's a really good point. A lot of people will say, and that same token, right? There's people that think they're entitled to success, but there's also a lot of people that think that they don't have to do the hard stuff, the closer they get to a certain level of success, right? And it's kind of like the analogy I always use is like really fit people. You'll never meet one that goes, "Oh no, I don't have to work out anymore. I'm really fit. I don't need to do that anymore," right? That's ridiculous. The person who has a six pack and can do 58 pull-ups and runs marathons, they're always working out and working on their skill set and learning how to run better in their foot heel strike or whatever. There's a lot of folks like that in creative spaces where they go, "Yeah. You know, I used to work really hard on this," and they kind of float in the middle of things and they — I was watching this documentary called Tiger on HBO. Have you seen it? It's about Tiger Woods?
[00:53:58] Chase Jarvis: I haven't, but I've heard that it is an important watch so it's on my list.
[00:54:02] Jordan Harbinger: It's good. And I don't care about golf at all or sports at all, but I've really enjoyed it. And they were talking about, there's a guy he really wanted to beat. I can't remember the guy's name at all. It was like Phil Michelson or something. I could even be getting the wrong guy.
[00:54:14] Chase Jarvis: Mickelson.
[00:54:15] Jordan Harbinger: Mickelson, yeah. I was going to say that, and I thought that can't be, it has to be Michelson. You know, I know a lot about golf, right? So it might've been that guy, but they said Tiger looked down on him because he was really talented, but he never really put in the work and he thought, "Man, what a waste? This guy could have been so much better than he was, but he was merely talented and really didn't put in the work." And this is like a world champion golfer, probably makes like $40 million a year playing golf and he's not, and Tiger looks down at him and goes, "This guy's not that great. He's merely talented."
[00:54:48] I was talking to somebody about interviewing and talk show hosts, and I used to work at SiriusXM, as I mentioned before, and Howard Stern is there and he was on the same floor as me and I remember talking to people and I'd go, "How does the show work? How does he run it? I want to learn everything about it." And I'd have these conversations with these folks. And people would say like, "Oh, he's just naturally so funny, and dah, dah, dah." And the people that worked with him would go, "Yeah, I mean, he is but he watches the movie from the guests that are coming in. He reads the books," and everyone's like, "What? Howard Stern read Anna Nicole Smith's biography." "Hell yeah, he did." Not only did he read it, there's 14 comedians or whatever people in the back room somewhere, they all read it, watched a bunch of videos, watch a bunch of our stuff. They're in the back writing jokes. They have some sort of like, it was like Slack, but before Slack, they have some sort of thing where they're writing lines that he can throw out there. So he is not only super prepared, but he's got super prepared people helping him in real time.
[00:55:47] Meanwhile, all of these sorts of like mid tier evening drive shock jockey people, they would walk in like hungover and go, "Who do we have today? Oh, Chase Jarvis. What does he do? He takes pictures or does he take videos? I don't know, screw it, whatever. And we'll just — it'll be fine. We'll just like make fun of him. And when he comes in and there'll be fine." Those shows never went anywhere because that's what those guys were doing to prep because they thought they didn't need to.
[00:56:12] Meanwhile, Howard Stern with his like a hundred million dollar a year contract is like, "Everybody get off your ass and read this book by tomorrow. I already did. Also, here's three movies you have to watch by tomorrow." That's a demanding job. So when you're new, you prepare a bunch, right? You work your ass off and then in the middle, you slack. And then if you ever get to the top it's because you went, "Shoot, I got to do all that stuff that I wasn't doing before," right? Tiger Woods was at the driving range all the time. He reworked his swing like a decade or whatever into his career. Why would you start reworking your swing when you're already the best in the world? Because he knew there was another level and he had to unlearn everything and start over to get to that level that nobody else was at. You have to do that with every craft.
[00:56:58] This is The Jordan Harbinger Show with me on Chase Jarvis Live. We'll be right back.
[00:57:05] This episode is sponsored by Glenfiddich. Glenfiddich breaks from the single malt scotch whisky norm, and helps redefine what it means to be rich. So easy to get bogged down in material success and buy a bunch of crap, but the currency of the new rich is getting more time and enjoyment out of what we've already got. And I believe being rich is spending most of your time doing what you love. For me, my job is to read books and talk to smart people, most of the time. I'm not sitting around in meetings. And that for me is very fulfilling and makes me feel like I'm living that rich life. Glenfiddich is a sixth generation independent family run business and is one of the few single malt scotch distilleries to remain entirely family owned. And it's still produced in the same distillery, which William Grant and his children hand-built. Over those 130-plus years, they have constantly challenged themselves to push the category further, including being the first company in 1963 to export single malt scotch whisky and branded as such outside of Scotland.
[00:57:55] Jen Harbinger: Skillfully crafted, enjoy responsibly. Glenfiddich 2021 imported by William Grant and Sons Inc New York, New York.
[00:58:02] Jordan Harbinger: And now for the rest of my conversation with Chase Jarvis.
[00:58:07] Chase Jarvis: The people that I have that I'm close with, that are world top performers, constant reenalysis, re-engaging their strengths and weaknesses, truth tellers about their own work, about what they see in the world. And that's just not the casual — that takes us serious stomach. That is not a stomach for someone who does not want to be the best. So if you're looking to emulate some of the characteristics and the attributes of the people who are world-class performers that is recommended, great place to start is like never being willing.
[00:58:42] And that's the cool thing. Go back to that. If you can play the long view, it's not about how do I have the best podcast in two weeks, or how do I get my startup out the door and get funding in two months or two anythings? It's about like, what can I do that I want to do for a long time because it brings me so much joy from the process and how can I always be improving even when I do find that combination of success and fulfillment? I think that I would underscore that having experienced that same sort of this different growth plateaus personally, and as a characteristic of people who are the world's best performers that I've had on the show.
[00:59:23] What were the early examples of your work that are still out there in the internet that you would steer people toward in order to demonstrate how far you've come and that your living example of lifelong learning?
[00:59:41] Jordan Harbinger: There are still out there. It's hard to say because a lot of this stuff up until three years ago with The Jordan Harbinger Show has been removed, I occasionally read air old stuff. And what's great about that is people will say, "Oh, it sounded a little bit like the other person had a microphone problem or you had a microphone problem." And I go, "No, the truth is I recorded that using like my MacBook keyboard microphone in an echo-y room. And my producer had to clamp down on the compression so much that it didn't sound like we were in a bathtub. So now it sounds like we're underwater instead." And you know, like bad audio quality, bad microphones, or using studio microphones in a non-studio environment and things like that. And there's a lot of that stuff out there.
[01:00:25] And now I'm like, "You know what? I'll just say in the beginning, this is an old episode. You don't have to remaster it so perfectly. People will understand. I definitely want to go back into those hard drives that I have from a million years ago and find like episode one, because I remember listening to it a few years ago and I think it started off as, "Hey, what's going on guys? This is our new, um, show. And we're going to be like talking about a lot of different top—" I mean, it was horrible, right? And it was like, "We don't really know what the next episode is going to be yet. But please join us." And I don't know what I was thinking, but we're having fun. That was the energy level I was at, apparently when I was having fun.
[01:01:10] The stuff that you see now from the best people in the world at whatever they do, like that's a highly curated kind of thing. You might take 50 selfies to put up a good one and then you're editing it in Photoshop. That's where the self-comparison thing comes into play. So there are some older episodes out there. I definitely want to post some of the old ones just for fun, but I think it's almost like the wrong question in a way, because it seems like what he wants to do, some of us want to do is go, "Oh look, they weren't always that good," but that's not even relevant, right? Because you're just going to compare where you are and go, "Oh, okay. At least I am as good or better than that," but that's not even a relevant sort of comparison, right? It's just not, it doesn't, it won't do anything for you, but it'll make you laugh in a moment. It'll make you feel better for a minute, but it won't really do anything for you.
[01:01:57] Chase Jarvis: Another comment that's worth sharing here, this idea of maintaining relationships. Now, you are a relationship expert. I don't know how you would talk about the emphasis you had on your early career coaching and whatnot. This question is specifically from Eric Dewald. How do you maintain relationships, a network? Is it different or similar to your close social circles? And I asked this question at this juncture in the show for two reasons. One, because it just popped up about 10 minutes ago and I marked it here. But I think it's important to — you know, you mentioned Jen earlier, former girlfriend, now-wife, having people in your world that this is not a one — I mean, certainly so many things come do come down to you, but all of the success you just went through at length, you know, the Howard Stern example, like surrounding yourself with great people. And even if it's just being able to connect with other people to have as a guest on your show or to invest in your startup, or if you're not the marketer to join forces and to become a marketer. How important are relationships to success in any field and would you please give some specific examples?
[01:03:18] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, definitely. I always refer to networking is the insurance policy that money could never buy. Because when you're up on top, like right now, I'm sure you have people calling you like, "Hey Chase, dude, get me on your show. Let me do a CreativeLive course, man." "Where were you before I had CreativeLive and I wanted to use your loft? Like you were busy, bro." You know, there's a lot of that. You got to dig the well before you get thirsty. I think that's a book title by this guy, but I want to say like Harvey Mackay. He's some sort of self-helpy type dude from the '90s. Dig the well before you get thirsty and I say that a lot because you can't really make relationships when you need them. It's very difficult to do that.
[01:03:58] You know, when somebody reaches out to you after eight years and you haven't talked to them and you went to college with them or something like that, if they pop up, you're like, "Hmmm, is it going to be Herbalife or Scientology? Like, what are you trying to sell me? What are you trying to get me into? I don't know. I'm a little bit suspicious. What's going on here?" But if you reach out to somebody and they're suspicious of you and you say, "Hey, you know, I've just done a bad job of keeping my network and my relationships. And you were always a really smart dude and I kind of want to keep that going. And I kind of want to get back in touch." I might still be suspicious. But I'll talk to you for a second. And then you pop back up in three months, six months. Check in again, tell me what's going on with you. I'll tell you a little bit about what's going on with me. All right. I'm less suspicious than, you know, a year later you popped back in, "Hey, I noticed you did this show. I listened to this and here's what I'm doing. And it's kind of interesting. Here's a picture of my kid." "Cool. I'm not suspicious anymore. Then, you know, we do that for a while." And then in two years you come back and you go, "Hey, so the last six months I've been doing this graphic design thing. And I was wondering if you knew anybody that needed graphic design work." Now I'm not like, "Aha, you've been buttering me up for 18 months to ask me for a favor. That's ridiculous." Now I'm going to go, "Oh yeah. You know, let me see what your portfolio looks like. And let me see if anybody asks me for this type of stuff. And I'm happy to refer you."
[01:05:11] If you do that at scale. You're generating trust. You're re-engaging your relationships. So the drills and exercises that I recommend, I have like a free course on this and I'll give away like it's free. So the whole thing is giving away.
[01:05:23] Chase Jarvis: Just this special for everyone who's watching the show today, a special free thing that he gives to everybody else. Actually I would love for you to — what is this thing you're talking about?
[01:05:33] Jordan Harbinger: So it's called Six Minute Networking because five-minute networking was already taken. And it only takes like four minutes a day, but four-minute networking, who's going to believe that? So if you go to jordanharbinger.com/course, it's there. Again, it's free. You don't have to put in credit card info or any of that crap. It's not like tricky free, it's just free. And one of the drills in there is you make — I call it layoff lifelines, because it's like, all right, imagine your business blows up or implodes, you know, not doing well. You get laid off tomorrow. Who are the 15 people that you're going to call? Your buddy from high school who runs a company, your friend's dad who was a successful entrepreneur, your neighbor who used to be this really successful restaurant owner that you haven't talked to because you moved.
[01:06:14] Make a list of those people. You lost a relationship with them. You haven't kept in touch. They're your weak and dormant ties, right? Or at least your dormant ties in your network. Reach out to them before you need something because they're going to go, "Huh? Herbalife for Scientology, right? But then you're just kicking the rust off. You're creating that relationship again. You're literally admitting, "Hey, you know, I moved and I never really reached back out to you. That was a mistake. I hope you're still running that successful restaurant. I'd love an update. Here's what I'm doing. Here's a picture of my kid. I don't really want anything other than to rekindle this because you're a super smart person and I want more people like that in my orbit." Do that. You will be pleasantly surprised at how many people reach back out and go, "Hey, I wondered what happened to you. I was just telling my wife the other day that we wondered what you were doing and if you'd never gotten married and had a kid." You know, that kind of thing, re-engage those weakened dormant ties. That'll sort of teach you that people do want to hear from you.
[01:07:10] And the other thing that I always do is I reach out to the — I open my phone up every day around 10:00 a.m. Pacific. I open up the text messaging app. I scroll all the way to the bottom. And that's where, like where your ex-girlfriends are, you can skip those, or your ex-boyfriends, whatever, skip those people, but then you can — or not, you know, whatever, but those are where those like really weak, really dormant ties are, right? It's like the guy who works for CreativeLive, who I went to lunch with that one day after I filmed my course. I didn't really keep in touch with him. You know, I'm going to see what that guy's doing. Where does that guy now? Oh, he moved to Colorado. He's got a dog and he's a dog trainer and is part-time, but he still works at CreativeLive remotely. Cool. Let's catch up with them. Let's catch up with this other person who I had lunch with once after a conference in San Diego. I call this Connect 4 because I do it with four people a day.
[01:07:59] Maybe half of them don't reply or one's like new phone, "Who this?" And it's not even the same person's phone anymore. You can delete them. But two or three out of the four people were replying to go like, "Oh my God, it's been forever. I haven't heard from you in ages. What's going on? I'm selling bikes over in Utah. I decided that to hell with law. Tell me what you're up to," right? You're re-engaging those people as well. And if you do that every day, five days a week, let's say five days a week, you're doing four people a day. That's 20 people a week, 80 people a month that you are re-engaging, let's say you have a 50 percent response rate just for the sake of math. That'll probably be higher. That's really a lot of people that you are now top of mind for them. And they are top of mind for you.
[01:08:41] So you know that this person just started a law practice and could use some immigration law clients. They know that you're running a graphic design workshop, so they know to think of you. And I will tell you every single day or close to it and opportunity from my phone and from doing this pops up. You know, someone will go, "Hey Jordan, good talking with you," two, three months ago via text for 30 seconds. Right? They don't turn into lunches and coffees. Don't worry about that. You should be so lucky. Somebody will go, "Hey, I'm going into a meeting right now," Zoom meeting these days, "And we're picking our annual speaker for our sales meeting. Do you do keynote speaking?" "Yeah, I do. Here's my fee. Let me know if you can work with that." You get a speaking gig. Or they go, "Do you know anybody that does really good web design?" And I go, "Yeah, I do the guy who did my site. He's great. Let me throw him a referral." Now that guy's thrilled with me and you're thrilled with me, I've built some social capital, some referral currency because I texted people at the bottom of my phone time. I would normally be wasting on freaking TikTok, social media, Instagram, you know, scrolling through cat photos.
[01:09:43] You're now putting that time to work and it takes almost no time to do this, right? You're just doing this everyday. It takes literally like five, six minutes and you're getting opportunities. You're getting opportunities to help other people, which is just as, if not more important, as helping yourself. And that's all the networking there is you don't have to go to these meetups. You don't have to drive across town to go to a mixer and eat stale cookies and drink Kool-Aid with a dude in a $99 suit, you know, running drills, so you can memorize people's names. You don't have to do that stuff. You can just do this sort of consistent daily habit that creates more space for you to maintain relationships with others.
[01:10:20] You don't have to spend eight grand to go to fancy events, to network and mingle. You can just use your existing connections and slowly build over time. You're far more likely to go to the gym for 20 minutes a day, four or five days a week, than you are to go to the gym once every other month and have fitness results come out of that, right? It's all about that consistency. If you don't have time to work out, go for a walk everyday, walk a mile, you're going to have better results than trying to run a 10K every 90 days.
[01:10:51] Chase Jarvis: So true. And we are our habits, right? So here are the things that you repeatedly do, whether you like it or not. To put a fine point on that, you're talking about actual relationship. Crazy, surprise, surprise that actual relationships are what matters in this world. And you just articulated the difference between someone who needs something and who is a grifter versus someone who has an actual relationship with. It may be not as developed as you'd like them, work harder at it, but there's an actual connection there. And if you — I just encourage people to add value over time before you talk about staying in touch. I think there's another one that I can, you know, just showing up in people's comments and supporting your show, leaving a review, all the things that it seems like basic knowledge points, but I want to go back in the true fashion of a full circle. And as we wrap up here, because I realize I'm keeping you a little longer than I told you I would.
[01:11:52] Jordan Harbinger: All good.
[01:11:53] Chase Jarvis: But we opened this with the journey that we each put ourselves on in order to either fulfill cultures, goals for us and the goals that the factory and the economy have for creating a good worker bee and how those are largely outdated. I'm looking for some good closing advice for the folks that may have peaked their interest across the course of our conversation. And they need a place to start because most people, you know, having been running CreativeLive for 10 years and serving tens of millions of people, there is a unique, I believe, a distrust that is embedded in us as young children in the same way that distrust for creativity has been embedded in us. There's a distrust that we can actually make a life that we care about doing something as seemingly whimsical, as hosting your own radio show or podcast, for example. There are people who are stuck there right now. You've captured their hearts and their minds across the last hour and 20 minutes. What's the advice that you're going to send them off with? Because if we got more people to do the things that they were supposed to be doing in the world, it would be a better place, but you need to get them started. I'm going to ask you right now, would you please help them get started? What would you say?
[01:13:14] Jordan Harbinger: Whew. It's tough to think about where everyone should start at the same time.
[01:13:18] Chase Jarvis: That's fair.
[01:13:20] Jordan Harbinger: But I will say that the best ideas and the best, whether it's marketing or creativity, has always come from — well, there's this, you ever see Glengarry Glen Ross. It's like a movie about sales guys, he's, "Always be closing, ABC."
[01:13:35] Chase Jarvis: Of course. It's a famous scene.
[01:13:37] Jordan Harbinger: That's right. Yeah. It's Alec Baldwin.
[01:13:39] Chase Jarvis: Coffee's for closers.
[01:13:41] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Sit down if you haven't made $10,000 today, you know, selling this like first prize is car. The second prize, a set of steak knives. Third prize is you're fired or something like that. It's a sales contest. And he's saying, " ABC, always be closing." And I would say always be, ABG, always be giving or always be generous. The best ideas that I've gotten, the best collaboration that I've been able to do, the best sort of like relationships that I've built in my life have come not from me going, "How do I get what I want out of this?" You're generally aimed in that direction, right? But it's how do I help other people get what they want, build what they want to build, and build that referral currency. And then just let it be known that this is what I'm aiming at.
[01:14:29] If you do that enough, people are starting to pave the way for you, right? Like if I say, "Man, I really want to be a graphic designer, but I'm working at a cafe right now making lattes." If I help enough people get what they want and help them build what they're wanting to build — and I'm not saying make a bunch of free crap for people, right? I'm saying help them find a dentist. You know, if you know, one in the area and that person just moved there. Help them avoid living in a bad neighborhood. These are all real things, by the way, that happened to me when I moved to LA. Somebody helped me find a dentist when I had a toothache and I didn't have insurance. And there was this pre-Uber needed to be in my neighborhood. This guy who was working at a coffee shop, he gave me his portfolio. He told me that he was trying to be a graphic designer. He had helped me find a dentist, his aunt in the area. And I said, "I owe you one, man." He's like, "I'm just trying to be a graphic designer." I didn't have anything for him. Probably I say four days later, it could have easily been a month later. I don't know. It's been a long time. Somebody reached out and said, Hey, who did your website at jordanharbinger.com?" And I said, "Well, you know, this was done in house. A friend of mine did it for me, but there's a guy he's hungry because he's making lattes right now. He's a graphic designer. His portfolio looks like this. Let me know if you want an intro." And she said, "Frankly, I'm desperate right now. And this portfolio looks pretty good. So yeah, introduce me." This guy got an $80,000 a year, full-time job, doing all of her client websites, all of her design, all of it across the board for her whole company because he helped me find a dentist on Facebook.
[01:15:56] Now, I've never met that guy in my life in real life. He was just a random dude who'd followed the podcast and happened to befriend me on Facebook. This was probably 11 years ago. So imagine if he had been looking only for what's in it for him, he would go, "Well, this guy's not going to hire me. So what do I give a crap about helping him find a dentist? That's not what I'm after. I'm trying to get a job here." And if I were just Googling dentists, I never would have posted and said, "Hey, somebody helped me with this. Does anybody know a good dentist in this area?" This was me not knowing what was over the horizon.
[01:16:30] And I always say, ABG, always be giving, always help others, always be generous, whatever you want to say, but you don't know what opportunities are over the horizon. You can't know who's going to be able to help you and who you're going to be able to help to generate referral currencies. So you should stop trying to figure out what's in it for you and just be as generous as you can afford to be with as many people as you can afford to be generous with. Because those opportunities that are over the horizon by definition, you don't know where they are or that they are out there. So if you continually help other people get what they want. You're continually on the lookout. You're doing that ABG thing, those people will start to come back. Even if only one in a hundred people can help you back, that's fine because this is very scalable, right? You could do it a hundred times a week, a hundred times a month. All you need is one or two people out of that hundred to help you back and you've built a great life and a great career for yourself.
[01:17:24] Chase Jarvis: You look young, but you are wise.
[01:17:27] Jordan Harbinger: I drank a lot of antioxidant shakes, you know. Keep the skin smooth.
[01:17:34] You know, I've got some thoughts on this episode, but before I get into that, here's what you should check out next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:17:41] A lot of people hear the name Pussy Riot and they think, "All right, what is this? You're just trying to get a shock value." Can you tell us the beginning a little bit of what Pussy Riot is? When I was reading in the book and you said you just made it up for a lecture, I was like, "There's got to be more to it than that.
[01:17:53] Nadya Tolokonnikova: No, seriously.
[01:17:54] Jordan Harbinger: Not really.
[01:17:55] Nadya Tolokonnikova: Seriously. They decided to punish us. They opened a criminal case and in two weeks after the performance we've got arrested. We knew how to hide from the cops and for a week, dozens of cops were looking for us. And when they caught us, finally, they were so happy—
[01:18:13] Jordan Harbinger: You're making them look like fools.
[01:18:15] Nadya Tolokonnikova: It's our profession.
[01:18:16] Jordan Harbinger: How does it feel to have these world leaders or in these private chambers, with their tea and their bodyguards, and you're sitting in a Russian prison and they're like, "These 22-year-old women, they're screwing my world up, man. I got to do something about this. Look at how bad they are.
[01:18:31] Nadya Tolokonnikova: I was really happy that Putin is in trouble because of us, because they definitely didn't expect anything like that. My mother thinks that I need to immigrate, run immediately.
[01:18:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. You still live in Russia. I can't even believe it.
[01:18:45] Nadya Tolokonnikova: Yeah.
[01:18:45] Jordan Harbinger: You wrote, "The future has never seemed so full of enrich and wonderful possibilities as when I was in a labor camp and literally had nothing but dreams." What gives you the strength to go forward when you're worried about, are they going to try to blind me? Are they going to try to beat me up? I mean, they were highly abusive to you while you were behind bars.
[01:19:03] Nadya Tolokonnikova: I would just prefer not to think about it.
[01:19:05] Jordan Harbinger: For more from Pussy Riot and world-renowned artists, Nadya Tolokonnikova, and her time in Russian prison, and of course, their crusade against Vladimir Putin's regime, check out episode 118 on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:19:19] Thanks again to Chase Jarvis for having me on his show. I really appreciate the opportunity. I hope you enjoyed this episode with me on that show as well. We're looking forward to your feedback. Links to everything will be on the website in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com. Please if you buy books or anything from our guests, use the links in the show notes that does help support the show. Worksheets for episodes are in the show notes as well. Transcripts also in the show notes. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on both Twitter and Instagram, or just hit me on LinkedIn.
[01:19:45] I'm teaching you how to connect with great people and manage relationships, using systems and tiny habits, software systems thinking, just like me, over at our Six-Minute Networking course, the course is free. I don't need your stinking credit card. Just go to jordanharbinger.com/course. I'm teaching you how to dig the well before you get thirsty. And most of the guests that you hear on this show subscribe and contribute to the same course. So come join us, you'll be in smart company where I know you belong.
[01:20:10] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Millie Ocampo, Ian Baird, Josh Ballard, and Gabriel Mizrahi. Remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is that you share it with friends when you find something useful or interesting. If you know somebody who could use the advice we gave here today, I hope you share this episode with them. I also hope you find something great in every episode of this show. So please share the show with those you care about. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we'll see you next time.
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