Terry Crews (@terrycrews) is a beloved cinema and television star, furniture designer, artist, philanthropist, activist, former NFL player, and author. His most recent book is Tough: My Journey to True Power.
What We Discuss with Terry Crews:
- How Terry prioritizes mental and physical health through exercise, nutrition, and rest.
- What Terry has learned about the power of forgiveness and how it can help to break cycles of anger and resentment — on an individual and societal level.
- How staying true to ourselves and pursuing what we love — even in the face of risking failure or criticism — allows us to make a positive impact on ourselves as well as the world.
- Terry’s views on personal accountability as a crucial component of growth and change, and how taking responsibility for our actions allows us to become the best versions of ourselves.
- The importance of empathy and understanding toward people with different perspectives and backgrounds, and the need to engage in respectful dialogue while seeking common values.
- And much more…
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Terry Crews is a man who has worn so many hats, you might be under the impression he’s a multi-headed mythical figure from legends of yore. He’s been an NFL player, an action hero, a sitcom star, a children’s book illustrator, an author, an advertising pitch-man, a playable video game character, a talent show host, a high-end furniture designer, and a human rights activist — to name just a few of the roles he’s tried on for size.
On this episode, Terry joins us to discuss how he persevered through the struggles of his tough early life in Michigan to play in the NFL, and how his career in football informed his pivot to acting. He shares how self-discipline, hard work, and surrounding himself with positive influences have been transformative — allowing him to overcome the consequences of regrettable choices along the way. He explains how fearlessly pursuing disparate interests allows him to experience life fully, why accountability is crucial to his success, and what he does to promote gender equality while combatting toxic masculinity. He also gives us his insight into the current political and social climate in the United States, including the importance of dialogue and understanding different perspectives. Listen, learn, and enjoy!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
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Miss the show we did with Tip “T.I.” Harris — award-winning rapper, actor, entrepreneur, family man, philanthropist, author, activist, and host of the expediTIously podcast? Catch up with episode 262: Tip “T.I.” Harris | ExpediTIously Expressive!
Thanks, Terry Crews!
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Resources from This Episode:
- Tough: My Journey to True Power by Terry Crews | Amazon
- Come Find Me by Ken Harvey and Terry Crews | Amazon
- Terry’s Crew by Terry Crews and Cory Thomas | Amazon
- Stronger Together: How Fame, Failure, and Faith Transformed Our Lives by Terry Crews and Rebecca King Crews | Audible
- Manhood: How to Be a Better Man-or Just Live with One by Terry Crews | Amazon
- Terry Crews Collection | Bernhardt Design
- Terry Crews | Website
- Terry Crews | Twitter
- Terry Crews | Instagram
- Terry Crews | Facebook
- Terry Crews | IMDb
830: Terry Crews | On Hollywood, Harassment, and Healing
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Coming up next on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:03] Terry Crews: Being successful, I realize overachievement is almost the same as underachievement. When you're underachiever, you hide under a bridge. When you're overachiever, you hide under a bridge you own. You know what I mean? Like success is the warmest place to hide. It hides all these problems and all these things because no one's going to call you when you jump.
[00:00:32] 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 scientists, entrepreneurs, spies, psychologists, even the occasional investigative journalist, legendary Hollywood director, neuroscientist, or gold smuggler. And each episode turns our guest's wisdom into practical advice that you can use to build a deeper understanding of how the world works and become a better thinker.
[00:00:58] If you're new to the show or you want to tell your friends about the show — and of course, I appreciate it when you do — I suggest our episode starter packs as a great place to begin. These are collections of our favorite episodes organized by topic. That'll help new listeners get a taste of everything that we do here on the show — topics like persuasion and influence, China, North Korea, disinformation, cyber warfare, crime, and cults, and more. Just visit jordanharbinger.com/start. You can also search for us in your Spotify app to get started or use our AI chatbot right there on the website at jordanharbinger.com and just ask it what you should listen to and hopefully, it will actually give you a recommendation. That's the idea, anyway.
[00:01:34] Today on the show, action movie hero, sitcom star, children's book illustrator, advertising pitchman, playable video game character, talent show host, high-end furniture designer, and human rights activist, Terry Crews, and I'm sure I'm forgetting plenty of other things. This guy started off doing odd jobs in California before making it. He was doing security for guys like Ice Cube. Kind of funny how that worked out. Actor and former NFL player, of course, and professional pec popper. How could I forget that? You might know him as the screaming Old Spice guy, President Camacho in Idiocracy, from America's Got Talent, or maybe if you have terrible taste in movies from White Chicks or a zillion other roles. And like I said, he's a playable video game character. Not many people can say that. That's pretty damn cool. And we walked past each other once on Hollywood Boulevard, like a decade ago. So basically we go way back. Enjoy this conversation with Terry Crews.
[00:02:29] I have to drive my own parents to the airport back to Michigan where I'm also—
[00:02:32] Terry Crews: Oh yes. Oh, I heard you're from Royal Oak, right?
[00:02:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I was born in Royal Oak. Yeah.
[00:02:37] Terry Crews: Okay.
[00:02:37] Jordan Harbinger: I grew up in Troy.
[00:02:38] Terry Crews: Oh, in Troy.
[00:02:39] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:02:40] Terry Crews: I grew up in Flint.
[00:02:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I know. And my dad was always like, "Don't go to Flint. It's dangerous."
[00:02:44] Terry Crews: Oh dear.
[00:02:45] Jordan Harbinger: And this is in the late '90s. Before that, in '80s when you grew up, it goes without saying—
[00:02:49] Terry Crews: Oh, yeah, dude, it is. Wait, first of all, you know, I was born in 1968, but I was in the Flint heyday, like until I was about five to eight years old. It was awesome. And then all of a sudden, it was pandemonium, Armageddon. It was the end of the world.
[00:03:04] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:03:05] Terry Crews: Like it was just like Walking Dead from the '80s.
[00:03:08] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:08] Terry Crews: All the way to now. It was bad, dude.
[00:03:11] Jordan Harbinger: It's scary going there because Detroit is quite dangerous in places. Flint, it's almost like the whole place you just go, what happened here?
[00:03:19] Terry Crews: All of it, all of it.
[00:03:19] Jordan Harbinger: It is like The Walking Dead is a good way to describe it.
[00:03:22] Terry Crews: No, and it's wild because I tell people, you know, there are two Michigans.
[00:03:26] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:03:26] Terry Crews: You know, there's Ann Arbor.
[00:03:28] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:03:29] Terry Crews: There's like Troy.
[00:03:29] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:29] Terry Crews: And all those kind of places. And then there's like Flint and Benton Harbor and—
[00:03:35] Jordan Harbinger: Saginaw.
[00:03:35] Terry Crews: —inside Eight Mile in Detroit.
[00:03:37] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:37] Terry Crews: Downtown now has come back, but we're downtown Detroit. I went to Interlochen, which was—
[00:03:42] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[00:03:43] Terry Crews: It was the first time I ever saw the other side.
[00:03:45] Jordan Harbinger: It's like a fancy music camp for people, I guess. Was that a good way to describe it? Fancy music?
[00:03:49] Terry Crews: Yeah. Yeah. It was music and art and—
[00:03:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:51] Terry Crews: —whole thing, and lots of rich kids and—
[00:03:54] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:54] Terry Crews: I was just like looking around like, what is going on? But I had a scholarship and—
[00:03:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:03:59] Terry Crews: It was the thing that got me out of Flint was my artistic ability, which was great.
[00:04:03] Jordan Harbinger: It's funny because people go, "Well, you have a lot in common with Terry Crews." I was like, "What? Michigan?" And they're like, "Well, you both play the flute," which by the way—
[00:04:10] Terry Crews: Yeah.
[00:04:11] Jordan Harbinger: I don't know about you. I got tormented endlessly for playing the flute but it's practicality. First of all, smallest instrument, easiest to transport. You're with all the girls. Tell me that a saxophone is better. I don't believe it.
[00:04:23] Terry Crews: First of all, this is the thing, man. People forget the flute is still one of the coolest instruments ever. I mean, when you hear it, you look at most blaxploitation movies, it's all flute. You know what I mean? It's all like, you know when you got the real, like the Shaft remixes and even when you listen to some of Dr. Dre's stuff, a lot of hip hop and all this, you always hear flute everywhere.
[00:04:45] Jordan Harbinger: That's true.
[00:04:45] Terry Crews: You know what I mean? It's kind of wild.
[00:04:47] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:04:47] Terry Crews: But nobody wants to play it, but it's everywhere and I'm going, dude, I'm not playing around. Like I realize what's cool and it may not look cool, but I love being flautist.
[00:04:58] Jordan Harbinger: Flautist, yeah.
[00:04:59] Terry Crews: It's always been one of the coolest things to me. And I had an uncle who taught me how to do it and I just held onto it. Sometimes I just pick it up and start jamming when I get the mood and it's all good.
[00:05:09] Jordan Harbinger: Really? I was wondering about that because I saw the moment on AGT where you go out there and play the flute with the dude who everyone was kind of like, come on, man. I wondered, I'm like, did he have to practice a bunch for this or was he just like, no, I could still play the flute.
[00:05:22] Terry Crews: Yeah, exactly.
[00:05:23] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:05:23] Terry Crews: Now, again, I'm not super good right now.
[00:05:26] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Yeah.
[00:05:26] Terry Crews: I used to be better.
[00:05:27] Jordan Harbinger: Easy to get rusty at the flute.
[00:05:28] Terry Crews: I would really love to like take a month off and just study with somebody and just like practice a little more and get a little better. You got to understand what's something about me, like everything I'm doing now, I did when I was 10.
[00:05:43] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[00:05:43] Terry Crews: I realized I just never stopped from workouts to drawing to — I hosted my high school talent show. Everything I do, I just realized I just don't want to quit. And for me, there was always this pressure to like, "Hey man, grow up. Give that up." You know? Because you got to understand—
[00:06:01] Jordan Harbinger: Interesting.
[00:06:02] Terry Crews: —whatever you really wanted to do was viewed as bad. Like if you wanted to go get a job, it was always like, okay, give up your dreams now.
[00:06:11] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:06:12] Terry Crews: And you know, get serious. You're not supposed to have fun when you work. I said when I was really, really young that I was just going to do whatever I loved and that was going to bring me my money.
[00:06:23] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:06:23] Terry Crews: Now, if that's a little bit of money—
[00:06:25] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:06:25] Terry Crews: —fine. If it's a whole lot of money, great. But I'll never really worry about the outcome. Just do what you love because doing something I hated is torture. I had a couple of those jobs. In college, I worked at a refrigeration company and just uploading stuff in the factory and restocking the shelves, and I was like, how can people do this for like—
[00:06:48] Jordan Harbinger: They have to.
[00:06:49] Terry Crews: —40, 50 years? How can you do it?
[00:06:51] Jordan Harbinger: Imagine you're back.
[00:06:52] Terry Crews: It's good for college, it's good for a summer.
[00:06:54] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:06:55] Terry Crews: But oh my God, I mean, I was working with people who had been there 30, 40 years. I was like, that's not going to me.
[00:07:00] Jordan Harbinger: My back hurts just thinking about unloading refrigeration units for 40 years.
[00:07:04] Terry Crews: Well, yeah, wait, they made me put them up on roof. It's like I had to carry them up on a ladder. This is like—
[00:07:10] Jordan Harbinger: OSHA wants a word.
[00:07:11] Terry Crews: Oh no. Yeah, there was no OSHA back then. It was like, get that big football player brother to go do it. You know?
[00:07:17] Jordan Harbinger: Oh my god. I heard you say that my whole life is bonus points coming from Flint, Michigan. Everything I do now is gravy. And more than anyone expected from Flint, expectations are very, very low. And you're right, it's not a place where kids grow up credibly wanting to be in movies. I would imagine somebody would go, "Well, you can be anything you want." And you're like, "I want to be an actor." And they're like, "Now hold on. Uh, this is Michigan and it's Flint, Michigan. Not going to happen."
[00:07:41] Terry Crews: Hold on. What you just said actually happened.
[00:07:44] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[00:07:45] Terry Crews: You have to understand we were having these assemblies at school.
[00:07:47] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[00:07:48] Terry Crews: You know what I mean?
[00:07:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:07:49] Terry Crews: And they'll be like, "You can do anything you want to do." And we would go, "Yay." But see, I would always take it to heart. Like I would be the kid that would go up to that same person once the assembly was over and I would tell them. I was like, "Listen, I want to do this, this, this, and this." And they'd be like, "What the hell made you think you can do that?" I would say, "You did."
[00:08:08] Jordan Harbinger: That's what you said.
[00:08:09] Terry Crews: I was like, "You just said we could do anything we want to do." And they were like, "Oh, well I didn't mean that."
[00:08:14] Jordan Harbinger: Within reason.
[00:08:16] Terry Crews: And listen, man, I realized, I was like, I got tired of that kind of pep talk. I'm going to start putting this to work. Like I got to prove, first of all, if it's going to work, you have to try it in order for these things to work. So let me just see if all this stuff you're talking is going to happen. And I just decided to try everything I wanted to do.
[00:08:37] Jordan Harbinger: It's got to be really disheartening to come from a rough place, have somebody give you a pep talk like that, and then you find out that they really didn't mean it.
[00:08:45] Terry Crews: Oh yeah.
[00:08:45] Jordan Harbinger: That's worse than just not having to talk in the first place.
[00:08:48] Terry Crews: Well, that was the conundrum. In Flint, the problem was it was a lot of adults who didn't believe that there was a better life either. Again, it was one of the things to say, but they would always look at us like before kids, "You're going to come off worse than we did." But I was an optimist, man. I have to say I still am. I'm an eternal optimist in regards to I like positivity. I like being around people who think about dreams and really go after it. You know what I mean? It's the thing that, what I call it makes my baby jump, you know?
[00:09:24] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:09:24] Terry Crews: But I've also been around the other side. And I watch things get worse and worse and worse when people just complain and people whine, and when people get cynical., I've watched them go into the toilet and I was like, "The way you're speaking, I don't even understand how you would think success would even be option for you."
[00:09:47] Jordan Harbinger: It seems like America's Got Talent is probably a pretty good place to be around people who are going for their dreams because you get people up there who are really talented and even the delusional ones are still like, "Oh, well I'm trying."
[00:09:57] Terry Crews: These are my tribe. You got to understand everybody on America's Got Talent is my tribe. They've been told time and time again, "You're never going to make it. Don't do it. You're wasting your time. Get a real job.' And I'm like, "Hey man, this is our house." You know what I mean? This is where you can make it happen. In fact, the crazier and sillier these guys are the more I love him.
[00:10:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:10:20] Terry Crews: You know what I mean? We have a guy named Sethward, who's been probably, he's been on AGT more times than any other person. And he comes and he does the most ridiculous things. He dresses like a walrus and jumps off the stage. And I love him. I love him. I'm like, that's the spirit. You have to be this kind of like unforgettable person. And sometimes you just get recognized for just your weirdness.
[00:10:45] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:10:45] Terry Crews: And that's okay. And that's me too. The pec-popping thing—
[00:10:47] Jordan Harbinger: Worked out for you.
[00:10:48] Terry Crews: —was my deal. You know what I mean?
[00:10:49] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Oh, you're like, "Let me—"
[00:10:50] Terry Crews: If that was all I was known for then, hey, I'll be the pec-popping brother.
[00:10:54] Jordan Harbinger: That's funny. You know my trainer wanted me to tell you that he can do the same thing and that if he ever meets you, he is going to show you how it's done. His name is Chad. He's like, "Tell him. No, I mean it. Tell him." All right, I will.
[00:11:05] Terry Crews: Listen, I get so many people coming up to me. Like, "Man, look at me. I'm doing it."
[00:11:08] Jordan Harbinger: Check this out.
[00:11:08] Terry Crews: "I'm doing it." I'm like, "Yes. So good. It's all good."
[00:11:12] Jordan Harbinger: Security. Yeah. I know you had a rough upbringing, not just because of Flint, but because of your dad, he had it tough and you even said that you found out that he also as a kid, had it tough from his dad. Not to bring this up, but it is public record now. You said, "I wet the bed until I was 15 because I didn't know what was going to happen every night. I'd wake up screaming, glass breaking, and I said, 'I got to find a way out.'" It seems like you were determined to break that cycle. Your kids have hit the dad lottery in a lot of ways, not just because you're a well-known dude, but you had a front-row seat of what not to do, I would imagine.
[00:11:42] Terry Crews: Yeah. You know what? One thing I tell my kids sometimes you have to experience the worst of times to realize when you're in the best of times. My kids sometimes come at me and they're like, "Oh man, these things just suck and this is not bad." And I'm going, you just don't know how bad it could really be if you just would understand how bad things could get. You could look at your day today as totally different. You'd be like, wow, this is nice. I have experienced some very hellish times. And it makes me more grateful because I look around and where I'm at right now, and I just go, oh my God. I literally wake up like, wow. When I used to wake up like, oh my God, what is happening? And it's wild because I see how people can get very, very depressed sometimes, but it's about perspective.
[00:12:35] And I realized when I was a kid that I have to get out of here because my father was so abusive just to my mom and to us. And it was just one of those things where I knew one day I might have to kill him. He ruled the house with an iron hand. It was one of those things where he loved intimidating people. I don't remember having really fun, happy times with him. It was just always a gut check about everything. I remember I was 12 and he's like, "Go change the oil." And I'm like, "Uh, I don't know how to change the oil." "Go change the oil, boy." And you're like, "Okay." And I put a bunch of oil in the carburetor. I had no idea—
[00:13:16] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, man, yeah.
[00:13:17] Terry Crews: —how to change oil.
[00:13:18] Jordan Harbinger: Of course.
[00:13:18] Terry Crews: But I was like, "Okay, I'll try to do it with no instruction." And then, the car starts messing up. He's like, "What the hell are you doing?" And it was like, but you never told me how to change the oil. And this is the game. The job was to make me feel like an idiot all the time. And that somehow made him feel better. But it's really funny because I realized once you've grown up with that, you see it everywhere. You know, you see it when people are obviously trying to test you in something you have no clue in. And then, when you don't know it, "Oh, I do," and you're like, "All right, okay, yay, yippee. You get the cookies." And where I grew up, it was like that. Everybody was challenging you and testing you and because the city was falling apart and so everyone was trying to basically gain their self-worth by putting everyone else down.
[00:14:14] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Yeah.
[00:14:15] Terry Crews: I realized I didn't have to do that. I realized, in fact, how about trying to build people up? How about supporting some people who really want to go for something? And let me tell you, it's been an amazing thing for me because I almost picked up a lot of the bad things that my dad had. Like, it's weird you try to avoid these things.
[00:14:36] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:14:36] Terry Crews: But you don't know any other way to be. I mean, I would definitely call myself a toxic male at one time because you know, playing in the NFL my time over there, it was major gut check time where everyone was testing your manhood and then you had to be more manly than the other guy. It was one of those things for me that I kind of played the part but by playing that part, by acting the part, I really wasn't truly me. It was a horrible existence.
[00:15:04] Jordan Harbinger: It's interesting you mentioned that about football. This morning I talked to my friend Cassius Marsh, who plays even now, and I said, "Hey man, is it common for NFL players to have a rough upbringing?" Probably kind of a dumb question. And he's like, "Yeah, it goes without saying because you have to play that game. One, everybody else, that's the only game they know. Two, it's sort of that macho culture. So even if you had a normal upbringing, you're around a bunch of other people who are playing that game and it's almost like that's the whole culture of that."
[00:15:30] Terry Crews: I tell people all the time, it's hard to have two good parents in playing NFL.
[00:15:35] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, yeah.
[00:15:36] Terry Crews: I mean because you play on anger. And I had a lot of anger, being angry at things adults told me, lies that I was told, people always playing these games in your head, always playing head games with you. It makes you a very angry kid. And then, you grow into a very angry man. In the NFL, anger works.
[00:15:58] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:15:59] Terry Crews: It works. You play off anger. It's funny. Have you ever been so angry you've never felt pain? I remember just being so mad and then looking down and there's a giant cut on my arm and you're like, "I didn't feel that at all."
[00:16:12] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. That's not good.
[00:16:13] Terry Crews: I know, no, that's what I'm saying. I mean, you literally turn off your pain and you turn on the anger and you're able to do these superhuman beats, but it's usually damage. It doesn't involve building or creating. It's always damaging and it damaged a lot of things for me.
[00:16:34] Jordan Harbinger: Did you get into lifting and fitness early on because of almost like a self-defense, self-preservation instinct?
[00:16:40] Terry Crews: Because I thought I'd have to kill my dad.
[00:16:42] Jordan Harbinger: Dang.
[00:16:42] Terry Crews: I mean, he was a big guy. And I knew I would have to kind of build my shell.
[00:16:48] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:16:48] Terry Crews: You know what I—?
[00:16:49] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:16:49] Terry Crews: The street was hard. I mean, it's also with Flint getting crazier and crazier by the minute. You got to understand that crack epidemic was horrifying. And then there was the demise of the auto industry, which was a double whammy. So people went straight from working in the factory into being drug kingpins. And it was a lot of violence, you know? That's the thing, I'm sure that's why your parents told you, watch out for Flint.
[00:17:17] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:17:17] Terry Crews: Because Flint literally led the nation in murders per capita for years.
[00:17:22] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:17:23] Terry Crews: It was just out of bounds. Like I knew friends and had people I knew, and they're like, "Oh, he's dead now. You know, he got murdered last weekend." And you're like, "What?" It created this hyper-sensitive world for me, and lifting was my thing where, okay, if I ever get jumped or if I ever get attacked, I got to be able to do something. Me and my brother took a karate class one time and the teacher had his kids beat us up.
[00:17:53] Jordan Harbinger: What?
[00:17:54] Terry Crews: I'm just telling you this is real, man.
[00:17:55] Jordan Harbinger: That's ridiculous.
[00:17:56] Terry Crews: No, I know. This is, again—
[00:17:57] Jordan Harbinger: What?
[00:17:58] Terry Crews: —you're talking about some rules that are like, they're like feudal rules. Like this space was like Genghis Khan and the kingdom of like some crazy game of throne stuff.
[00:18:09] Jordan Harbinger: This is before lawsuits were as ubiquitous.
[00:18:11] Terry Crews: Oh yeah. We go down to his basement and his kids, they were a little older than us, me and my brother, and their whole job was to kick our ass and I was like, "I don't want to do this anymore."
[00:18:23] Jordan Harbinger: What? Did we learn how to defend ourselves?
[00:18:25] Terry Crews: Wait. We didn't know anything about karate and they did, and they were like, this is how you're going to learn. So I was like, so we're going to come down here every Saturday morning and get beat up. I was like, nah, that's all right. I'll just go to the gym.
[00:18:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:18:39] Terry Crews: And that was my thing.
[00:18:40] Jordan Harbinger: It was a good choice.
[00:18:40] Terry Crews: Yeah, it was a very good choice.
[00:18:42] Jordan Harbinger: My God, that is—
[00:18:42] Terry Crews: That was crazy. That was mean as hell. He was meaner than my father, and I was like, oh Lord, this is bad.
[00:18:47] Jordan Harbinger: I feel bad for those kids though.
[00:18:48] Terry Crews: I often wonder what happened to those kids.
[00:18:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:18:52] Terry Crews: I have no idea.
[00:18:55] Jordan Harbinger: You're listening to The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest Terry Crews. We'll be right back.
[00:19:00] This episode is sponsored in part by Grammarly. There are a few tools that I use every day, kind of all day, every day, and I can't live without. Grammarly is one of those. I've been a user of theirs for years. It's like having somebody over my shoulder gently reminding me ways that I can improve my written communication, which Jen used to have to do. "Hey, that's really unfriendly. This comes across really abrupt." Now, Grammarly does it automatically, so it's saving Jen a ton of time, but it also helps you become and write more clearly, concisely, professionally. I think you should start using this if you work in an office environment or if you're someone like me who's like firing off emails all the time and you don't necessarily think about how it might be perceived on the other end due to the speed that you're drafting them. That's been super helpful. This is their tone detector. It gives you feedback and how your message comes across, and it is just absolutely invaluable. Like I said, I got a tendency to be curt, not always great. This thing runs in the background. It's like an extra set of ears or trusted eyes that I can rely on to help me be more mindful of how I'm coming across, which again, super helpful in professional settings, super helpful if you are running the team and you don't want people to think that you're kind of a dick and it's easy to implement because again, it runs in the background of everything that I write — my email program, my browser everywhere on my computer. Grammarly will underline incorrect words and grammar and show you what to replace it with. And here's what I love about it. It also tells you why. So you're like, oh, that's why this works like this. Not just, oh, I spell that wrong every time, or I'd never hyphenate that. You hover over it and tells you why. Awesome. The right tone can move any project forward when you get it right with Grammarly. Go to grammarly.com/tone to download and learn more about Grammarly Premium's advanced tone suggestions. That's G-R-A-M-M-A-R-L-Y.com/tone.
[00:20:43] This episode is also sponsored by Eight Sleep. We used to have this old foam mattress that would trap heat and you know, get all sticky and uncomfortable to sleep on, especially during summer. And then we get the kids on the bed and it traps other things besides heat. But by the way, if you're not sleeping well, I would say most likely temperature is to blame. Like, yes, there's stress and all this other stuff, but if all your daily stuff is under control, for me it was temperature. I had so many problems with it. Science has shown that your body temperature actually needs to drop in the early and middle part of your sleep and rise in the morning. So you can fall asleep fast, get more deep sleep. You're probably sleeping in 10 degrees hotter than you should. We spend a third of our lives sleeping, ideally, and getting a good night's sleep is essential for performance or pretty much anything else. So several years ago, we upgraded to Eight Sleep. The Pod Cover by Eight Sleep, it fits on any mattress. It's like a fitted sheet and it can automatically adjust the temperature based on the phases of your sleep and the environment that you're in. And I know you're like, how does that happen? Well, it uses water and it's pretty damn amazing. It has dual zones, so Jen likes it warm and cozy. I like it really cool. It's super quiet. It doesn't make a crazy loud pumping noise. The Pod is also really small. You add water every few months. It's not leaking all over, evaporating everywhere, and it works great. There's an app. You set the schedule, the bed pre-cool or warms up the bed before you even get in. Turns off when you wake up whenever you want. And it's got health tracking. So you can wake up to a personalized sleep report for you each morning that offers insights on how certain behaviors impact your sleep. Like if you had caffeine the night before, which eh, I do that sometimes. The Eight Sleep has been extremely worthwhile investment, babies are not, and it's one of our favorite things that we own in the house. So go to eightsleep.com/jordan. Save 150 bucks on the Pod Cover by Eight Sleep. That's the best offer you're going to find. You got to go to eightsleep.com/jordan for 150 bucks off and to support the show. Eight Sleep currently ships within the US, Canada, and the UK, some select countries in the EU and Australia. So no excuses you all. So I don't want to hear how you can't support the show. Go get yourself an Eight Sleep.
[00:22:38] Hey, if you're wondering how I managed to book all these amazing folks for the show, authors, thinkers, creators, every single week, it's because of my network and I'm teaching you how to build your network for free in a non-schmoozy, non-gross way. That's our free course. jordanharbinger.com/course is where you can find it. All of this is super easy. It's not cringey. It's not schmoozy, it's down to earth. There's no awkward strategies, there's no cheesy, gross stuff. Just practical exercises that are going to make you a better connector, a better colleague, a better friend, a better peer. It doesn't take a lot of time, that's why it's called Six-Minute Networking. I mean, it's really four minutes, but six minutes somehow rolls off the tongue easier. Five-minute networking was taken. By the way, many of the guests on our show subscribe and contribute to the course. Come join us. You'll be in smart company where you belong. You can find the course at jordanharbinger.com/course.
[00:23:25] Now, back to Terry Crews.
[00:23:29] Years ago, like 10 years ago, I walked past you on Hollywood Boulevard and you had, I'll call it resting Terry face. You were thinking about something else and I was like, "Whoa." And my friend goes, "Don't worry, it's Terry Crews." I was like, okay, cool because you were like looking off in the distance, probably who knows what happened that morning? And I was like, oh yeah, let's not say it.
[00:23:46] Terry Crews: You know what? But this is the thing, and I'm going to tell you what's so amazing, that has made my career, this resting face. It is very, very, like, I don't know what it is, but ever since I was a kid, people were like, "You okay, man? You all right?"
[00:23:58] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:23:58] Terry Crews: I'm like, "No, no. I'm just thinking. I'm okay." But I have a face that's very like, you know?
[00:24:03] Jordan Harbinger: It was sunny.
[00:24:04] Terry Crews: And then people are like, okay. And then, when I smile, they go, "Oh, hey, hi. Oh wow, he's so nice. Oh, it's good." And you got to understand like, that's my whole career. The whole career is that flip, like from White Chicks to any movie you've ever seen me in. It's always been like, oh wait, he's — the first movie I ever got, well, one of the movies was a movie called Friday After Next, where I played this crazy ex-con who tried to rape Katt Williams. It was—
[00:24:30] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:24:30] Terry Crews: It was really bizarre. Okay. You couldn't be made today, by the way, but because of that face Ice Cube was just like, "All right, man, you're the dude." But I knew that I was a flute-playing artist, you know what I'm saying? But it's one of those things where as long as I didn't smile, they were like, oh man, I could have had a career as this straight badass kind of guy.
[00:24:52] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:24:53] Terry Crews: But I never wanted to do it. I remember like, they were like, "Man, you know, you got to take some more karate lessons and you can be the next action guy." And I was like, yeah, but I like being funny. I love making people laugh and I love bringing that joy and stuff. And I got a job being this intimidating guy in a movie called Malibu's Most Wanted.
[00:25:11] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, yeah, with Jamie Kennedy.
[00:25:12] Terry Crews: With Jamie Kennedy.
[00:25:15] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:25:15] Terry Crews: But this was the thing, my job was to be all like this super intimidating thing, but I kept making jokes and doing funny things and the director was like, "Dude, do this again. Do that. Wait, wait, wait." He started pulling me out to the front and what was so great is that I got to take the comedy route which I had all to myself, which was a thing whereas a big guy who looked like me, I was all by myself. Like they were like, dude, he's funny. And back when I started they had a rule where they said muscles weren't funny. It was weird because Joe Piscopo got all built up and then they kicked him off Saturday Night Live.
[00:25:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:25:50] Terry Crews: You know? And everybody was like, okay, you got to stay dumpy or that black or don't try to get in shape. It won't be funny. And I realized that I could make fun of this masculinity. I could make fun of this hyperoxic guy and really kind of turn it on his ear. You know, it's funny because a lot of my rules have done that from President Camacho in Idiocracy to even Old Spice commercials.
[00:26:15] Jordan Harbinger: I was going to say Old Spice, Expendables.
[00:26:17] Terry Crews: Yeah. Expendables.
[00:26:19] Jordan Harbinger: Expendables is like perfect mix of that, right? Because you're an actual hero, but it's also like, "Remember this sh*t on Christmas?"
[00:26:25] Terry Crews: It was so funny because this is one thing I love about Stallone. Stallone, he is so wonderful. He wants to be a comedian. Like he has jokes for days, but he's like, "But they won't believe me. Like, you know, I'm doing the joke, but they want to see me killing people, so I'm going to give you the jokes." And that's what he did.
[00:26:44] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:26:44] Terry Crews: He was literally telling me, "Terry, I want you to say this. I want you to say that." And it was so cool because he's really a funny, funny guy. He's tried a couple of comedies before.
[00:26:53] Jordan Harbinger: That's hard to believe though, lowkey. I feel like there's a guy who rarely ever smiles in public and everything.
[00:27:00] Terry Crews: Oh, Sly is hilarious, man.
[00:27:02] Jordan Harbinger: That's funny.
[00:27:02] Terry Crews: So listen, he's one of the funniest people I've ever been around. He's as funniest Sandler, and I'm trying to tell you, but as soon as he turns it on outside, he's like, back to Sly, you know?
[00:27:14] Jordan Harbinger: Way more intimidating than Sandler. Regardless, I would imagine Sly's funny mode is still scarier than Sandler's scary mode.
[00:27:20] Terry Crews: Yeah, well, Sandler has no scary mode.
[00:27:23] Jordan Harbinger: That's true.
[00:27:24] Terry Crews: He just has zero scary mode, but I love him. I love him.
[00:27:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Oh, man. I'm glad we got into this because I wondered if lifting weights give you maybe a sense of control that you didn't have at home. Because when you're in the gym, you're focused on yourself. It's too hard to pay attention to the outside world because you're pushing weight above your head and trying not to let it fall on you. And also you can build your body. For me, I'm not a big dude, but when I was younger lifting weights, I was like, wait a minute, I can make myself stronger than other people just by showing up every day. This is the secret weapon that no other kid had.
[00:27:55] Terry Crews: Well, you know, I started it as a competition. It was about being stronger than everybody because, you know, when you're in the weight room, it was sport specific, but then I changed. A lot of my fitness journey right now, again, I work out for almost two hours a day, usually every day, but a lot of my fitness journey was just about my just health and my wellness. It's not about competing with anybody. It's literally about longevity and trying to be the best person you can be. And also it staves off depression. It staves off—
[00:28:33] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's true.
[00:28:34] Terry Crews: —a lot of bad feelings. It's very therapeutic. I worked through a lot of disappointments. I worked through a lot of pain. I worked through a lot of my life problems in the gym, whereas before, it used to be about being bigger than someone else, or like I said, trying to kill my dad or whatever. But especially when I quit football, there was a time in my life where I stopped working out, and it was—
[00:28:56] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, I was going to ask about that.
[00:28:57] Terry Crews: —literally like a year because I was like, why do it anymore? And I was in a complete depression, and I first moved out to LA and my wife came up behind me and pinched my back fat.
[00:29:08] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:29:08] Terry Crews: As a man, we think we're always the same, you know?
[00:29:11] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, life comes at you fast.
[00:29:12] Terry Crews: Yeah. And I was like, "Whoa, what are you doing?" She said, "Oh, it's cute. You're cute. I love you, honey."
[00:29:17] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:29:17] Terry Crews: I was like, "Oh my, don't you ever touch that again?" Like, I didn't even know it was there. And then I realized, wait a minute, why? Am I not taking care of myself?
[00:29:27] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:29:28] Terry Crews: And this is where the workout works because it's all about self-care. It's literally you taking care of yourself. And this is the essence I think, of what being a man is. I mean, it's about taking responsibility, but you have to take responsibility for you. You can't take responsibility for anybody else. It's not about you controlling anybody else, whatever. It's like in the weight room and in your learning and in your path, you have to take control of what you can take control of. And it starts in a gym. And what I do is I put podcasts on. I put—
[00:30:06] Jordan Harbinger: What do you listen to?
[00:30:07] Terry Crews: I read books, you know, like Tim Ferriss and—
[00:30:09] Jordan Harbinger: Oh sure.
[00:30:10] Terry Crews: —you know, all that stuff. But also, I put tons of self-help books, therapeutic books, books that just really help me while I'm lifting. So it's never really about my body, it's about my brain at the same time. Do what you like and love, but don't worry about the outcome. So if you end up with a great body, great, but a lot of this stuff is just self-discipline. If you don't have it, you never really achieve anything. Anything worth having.
[00:30:42] Jordan Harbinger: Did you ever change the relationship with your dad? I know there was a confrontation at some point. How did that play out?
[00:30:47] Terry Crews: Well, yeah, I mean, first of all, my father, I was an adult. I was about 30 years old, and he hit my mother in the mouth and literally knocked her tooth loose. I couldn't believe it because as people who suffer from alcoholism, Christmas is a hard time. And it was around Christmas, we call it the Christmas from hell. And I told my mom to get out of the house and the whole thing, and it was just me and my father, and I beat him up. I thought it was going to be therapeutic. I thought it was going to feel good, and I felt worse. It was horrible because there I was, he was the shell of a man. I'm big, strong, towering over him, had beat him down. He's begging me to stop and I thought that revenge would be wonderful. Because you know, as men, we live in a revenge movie.
[00:31:41] Jordan Harbinger: Sure.
[00:31:42] Terry Crews: You know what I'm saying? It's all about the get back. It's all about this. But then I realized that you can either have revenge or success, but you can't have both. A lot of people feel like, "Yeah, I'm going to get people back." But what it does is drags you back into the mud. You know what I mean? You have to go back into a very dark place to find your revenge and sometimes you don't make it back out because even if you get it now, you're tainted. Now, you're muddy and dirty and sloppy where you work clean. And success is about leaving this stuff behind. Forgetting revenge and just finding a new territory, finding a new place. You'll never get sullied. You'll always be in a new spot. And after I beat my father up, I didn't speak to him for like 10 years and he was unapologetic, okay? But there was one time I remember I started to get into therapy really big and I really got into a very big forgiveness thing where I was like, I got to find ways to forgive people because this is hurting me. It's not damaging anybody else, me holding on to these problems, right? And so I remember saying I got advice from a therapist and I went to my father and I had to thank him for one thing he did for me. And I said, "Hey man, I want to thank you for having me." And that was the best thing I could think of. I said, "Because if it wasn't for you, I wouldn't exist. So thank you." And he cried and he was like, "I'm sorry for everything. I'm sorry, blah, blah." I was like this is what it was.
[00:33:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:33:21] Terry Crews: I couldn't believe it, man. I really couldn't believe it. I mean, what beating him up couldn't do, this did. I'm not going to say our relationship was great, but I'm different because I did forgive and move on and find that success and kind of get past the lust for revenge. I'm over it. And now I live a free life. It doesn't really matter what he does anymore. It's about me taking control of the things I can take control of, which is myself. You know what's crazy is that I started to realize that everything I went through made me who I am today. Let's say I had a great upbringing. I could be a bum on the street, you know? You know what's crazy? I've seen great parents have crazy, ridiculous, mean serial killer kids.
[00:34:12] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Yeah. It happens.
[00:34:13] Terry Crews: And I've also seen terrible parents, these kids come up and they just are the most amazing people. It's just like—
[00:34:20] Jordan Harbinger: It's rare but it happens.
[00:34:21] Terry Crews: They change the world. Do you know what I mean? And it's really about choice. It's really about choice. Like I can't blame my father for anything that happens to me today. You know what I mean? Like, "Oh man, my dad was mean. And now, I can't go to work," you know? That makes no sense. It makes no sense. My kids can't blame me. The adult ones can't blame me for anything that happens to them today because they're responsible for their day.
[00:34:46] Jordan Harbinger: As long as they know that.
[00:34:47] Terry Crews: You know what I mean? But we waste a lot of time blaming old things that, you know, all of a sudden, "Well, if my father had done this or my mother had done that," well, they didn't. So now, what are you going to do about it? It's up to us to make these choices, to do these things, and do the work to make your own life better. I mean, because no one is coming to save you. That's the hard part.
[00:35:11] Jordan Harbinger: That's an interesting point. I do wonder. A lot of people who are really successful, sports, acting, or other things that you're good at, a lot of times the success brings out old negative stuff that is hiding. And I wonder if you had any experience with that. Like sometimes being successful highlights your flaws, whether it's money, fame, whatever.
[00:35:28] Terry Crews: Oh, easy. Being successful. I realize overachievement is almost the same as underachievement. When you're underachiever, you hide under a bridge. When you're overachiever, you hide under a bridge you own. You know what I mean? Like success is the warmest place to hide. It hides all these problems and all these things because no one's going to call you when you jump. Oh yeah, he's great. He's well, he looks good. He's wonderful. And I remember because I had an addiction to pornography for years and I've been married to my wife for 20 years and she didn't know. And it imploded, our marriage imploded, but I was very successful. Like, you have to understand I was making money. Everybody thought it was great. And when my wife and I were going through this, because we split up, I had to go to therapy for the first time and I literally went to this whole place where they deal with sex addiction. And because I couldn't get rid of it, a lot of people doubt. They say, "Well, you can't be addicted to pornography." But all I knew is I couldn't stop. I wanted to, but I couldn't. And I was like, "What is going on with me?" But people were still like, "You know Terry, you're great, you're fine." And I'd watch my wife, you know, roll her eyes like, "Uh, I know a whole different dude." And that was the thing that hit me, man. I was like, wow, man, there's a level of success that is really internal when I can look and be proud of who I am. But this was the thing, I wasn't. It was an image. It was something that I had built up where it was this image of Terry Crews that was so beautiful and so wonderful, but deep down I knew that I was a jerk. I knew that I wasn't doing the right things, you know?
[00:37:16] Jordan Harbinger: It's a tough realization to come to. I would've imagined.
[00:37:19] Terry Crews: It's hard. Oh no, it's the hardest, but it's necessary. I've rebuilt my whole life, man, from the ground up. It had to all get raised and we built it together, me and my wife.
[00:37:31] Jordan Harbinger: Do you feel like that porn addiction affected your job as an actor? Because if your job, when you're acting is to portray humanity in general, you strip that away from people you watch in porn, obviously, right? I mean, that's almost the point I would imagine.
[00:37:43] Terry Crews: Oh, yeah. Right.
[00:37:44] Jordan Harbinger: It seems like it might affect your ability to do that successfully on screen yourself, or am I just reading into it.
[00:37:49] Terry Crews: No, no, no, it's, it's wild because when you see people as objects, this is what happens even in the industry. When I looked at comedy, even in the '90s, people weren't represented. They were like objects. You would have Asians or Black or Hispanics that were really just stereotypes of themselves. And everybody would laugh and it was like, ha, ha, ha. But you realize it's not a real person. It does the same thing pornography does. Yeah, these body parts, but I don't really care about how you feel about any of this.
[00:38:21] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:38:22] Terry Crews: And I realized comedy was doing that in a lot of ways. Like it didn't really care. In fact, it was all about hurting feelings. That's where the funny part was. But right now, I think that it's been a realization. One of my things that I knew that I needed to do when I was going to do something funny I was going to be the joke. And that's come out of a lot of my therapy. I realized if the joke is on me, then you have to see me as a person. It's funny because you had to see me as a whole person. This is something I like to say sometimes it might be a little confusing, but I'd rather be whole than good. I'd rather be happy than right. Whole is that you see me, you see the good and bad. Whereas before I was only obsessed with people just seeing me as a good guy and seeing me this and this and it. But I can honestly say if I'm having a bad day right now to anyone. I can honestly say my feelings. Whereas before it was like, "Oh, I'm good. No, I'm fine. Everything's great," and it wasn't great. And I would push past all those feelings, push past everything. Like if someone insulted me, I'm like, "No, no, you can't touch me. I'm good. I'm good, but I'm not good." If I was insulted by someone, now I could say, "Hey man, that's not cool." I can literally look at him. That's a whole person as opposed to just being, "Oh, I'm good. Oh man, he doesn't bother anybody." This is the thing about the internet that I think is refreshing is that, you know, for every great comment you get 10 bad ones. And it keeps everything in perspective.
[00:39:54] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:39:55] Terry Crews: You know what I mean? Like, I can't say everybody loves me. I can't say that. You could scroll down, you could find some people who hate my guts.
[00:40:01] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, in the comments.
[00:40:02] Terry Crews: Yeah. That's what I'm saying, but it's almost like good because that means I'm human. Now, I'm a human being. If everybody liked me, I'm a picture, I'm an image. You know what I mean? But humanity, there's going to be people who like you. There's going to be the people who just don't care. And there's going to be people who hate your guts. That's hope. And that's okay.
[00:40:24] Jordan Harbinger: So the tip here is what? Read the YouTube comments. I don't know if I like that.
[00:40:28] Terry Crews: No, I would not advise because I wouldn't definitely, you got to go to therapy for a long time—
[00:40:33] Jordan Harbinger: That's right.
[00:40:33] Terry Crews: —before you hit the comments on—
[00:40:34] Jordan Harbinger: That's right.
[00:40:34] Terry Crews: —YouTube.
[00:40:35] Jordan Harbinger: Man, you got to be able to meditate for a few years.
[00:40:37] Terry Crews: Oh no, no. Listen, I don't even read them anymore.
[00:40:40] Jordan Harbinger: Okay.
[00:40:40] Terry Crews: But I'm just trying to say—
[00:40:41] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:40:42] Terry Crews: —that it's perspective. You know what I mean? That's what it is.
[00:40:49] Jordan Harbinger: This is The Jordan Harbinger Show with our guest, Terry Crews. We'll be right back.
[00:40:53] This episode is sponsored in part by Better Help. If you're going through a tough time, you are not alone. I have been there for sure. I waited way too long to realize that this was a thing that I should talk to a therapist about. I had friends being like, "You should talk to a therapist," and I was like, "What? I'm not crazy. I don't need that. That's for people who are having breakdowns or something." Not true at all. Therapy is just one of the best things you can do for yourself. I wish I'd gone probably 20/20 hindsight years before I did. Better Help is a great way to dip your toes into the waters of therapy. I don't like sitting on the couch. I mean, my therapist was cool and all that, but if Better Help had existed back then, I would've used it for sure. You can do chat, phone, video sessions. I do Better Help now, of course. I don't like to drive around and park and I got to be relaxed already. I don't want to be stressed out in traffic or something beforehand, and I have an easier time opening up when I'm in the comfort of my own home. I can talk on the phone which I'm used to instead of in front of a stranger who I don't know. You know, you think, what are they thinking right now? But when you're on the phone, it's almost like you're talking with yourself, except you get feedback. Therapy is vulnerable work. Better Help doesn't feel intimidating. They match you with a therapist that's tailored to your needs, and if you get somebody you just don't click with, you can get another one. There's no charge. It doesn't take a long time. You don't even have to tell your therapist that you don't like them. They'll handle that for you, which is great for those of us with avoidant personalities. They've also got over 94,000 reviews on the iPhone app if you're still skeptical. I wouldn't bother reading any of those, they're positive overwhelmingly, in fact. So if you're on the fence, take this as a sign to try it out and vent to somebody who's not your friend and is sick of hearing an event.
[00:42:26] Jen Harbinger: If you want to live a more empowered life, therapy can get you there. Visit betterhelp.com/jordan today to get 10 percent off your first month. That's better-H-E-L-P.com/jordan.
[00:42:37] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is also sponsored by StoryWorth. I'm super close to my mom, but I thought I knew my mom better than anyone. One day we were chatting and I heard a story that I'd never heard before and I thought, man, how many other stories don't I know? And so I got my mom's StoryWorth, which is an awesome service that's all about preserving your family's legacy and strengthening your bonds. And I know that sounds vague, but basically, look, family's everything. Our loved one's stories are the threads that weave the fabric of our lives, to put a dramatic spin on it. But often we don't take the time to really delve into those stories to learn more about the people who matter most to us. StoryWorth is an ingenious online service that helps you and your family members share and preserve those precious memories. So when you sign up, StoryWorth sends a thought-provoking question each week to the family members of your choice. So the questions can range from what's the most daring thing you've ever done to what were your grandparents like. And the answers reveal a hell of a lot about their lives, experience, wisdom that you just never would've thought to ask and never would've known otherwise. And over the course of a year, your loved one, my mom in this case, will respond to these questions. At the end of it all, StoryWorth compiles their answers into a really beautifully designed hardcover book. And we gave it to my mom for Christmas. She was stoked. So it's not just a gift, it's an heirloom that can be passed down through generations in a way that ensures your family's stories don't just fade away. So it's great birthday, holiday, or just because kind of thing. Really fun to read. Really fun for my mom to write. And now, we have this keepsake. Jen, tell them how to give all the moms, dads, and whoever's in your life a meaningful gift that you all will cherish for years.
[00:44:12] Jen Harbinger: Right now for a limited time, you'll save $10 on your first purchase when you go to storyworth.com/jordan. That's S-T-O-R-Y-W-O-R-T-H.com/jordan to save $10 on your first purchase, storyworth.com/jordan.
[00:44:27] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is also sponsored in part by ZipRecruiter. I've got some business ideas like a rented chicken, a service for urban dwellers who want to try their hand at raising chickens for fresh eggs without the long-term commitment, customers can rent chickens and all the supplies for a designated period of time. And that sounds like a joke, but I guarantee you that would crush. Personal paparazzi, this is a service that provides customers with their own team of paparazzi photographers to follow them around. Just rub that narcissistic ego just for a day. That one would absolutely slay, especially in Los Angeles. Whether you're starting a new business or you're growing one, if you want it to be successful, you need the most talented people on your team for your rented chicken business, that's where ZipRecruiter comes in. Right now, you can try it for free at ziprecruiter.com/jordan. ZipRecruiter is an online platform that streamlines the entire hiring process, making it faster and easier for you to find the perfect candidate for your job opening. What sets ZipRecruiter apart from other hiring platforms is they have powerful matching technology trademark. Instead of you sifting through countless resumes, ZipRecruiter does the heavy lifting for you. They scan thousands of resumes, most of which are going to be crap. Let's be real. They identify the people with the right skills and experience for the job, and then actively invite them to apply. And ZipRecruiter's technology is so effective that four out of five employers who post on ZipRecruiter get a quality candidate within the first day. And a bunch of you have written to me and told me that that has jived with your experience using ZipRecruiter as well. So you're welcome. And you could have your next superstar employee for your paparazzi chicken business in just 24 hours.
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[00:46:18] If you like this episode of the show, I invite you to do what other smart and considerate listeners do, which is take a moment and support our amazing sponsors, or at least one of them, right? To learn more, all the deals, all the ways to support the show are going to be at jordanharbinger.com/deals. You can also search for any sponsor using the AI chatbot right there on the website at jordanharbinger.com. Please consider supporting those who support the show.
[00:46:41] Now, for the rest of my conversation with Terry Crews.
[00:46:45] Your Hollywood story, the early days, has some magic to it, right? I heard you had some friends who would tip you off to movie shoots, and you would go in and check it out as a visitor, try to do security. Tell me about Training Day. I mean, you got with Denzel and you know you're big when you only need the first name.
[00:47:00] Terry Crews: Oh.
[00:47:00] Jordan Harbinger: Everybody knows who you're talking about.
[00:47:01] Terry Crews: Listen, oh man, that was it. I was tipped off because what I did, I did security. So the location managers would always call me and they were like, "Hey, man, Denzel shooting a new movie over here down in LA. You got to come down." And I would come down just to watch. Now you got to understand, I was not coming to LA to be an actor. I came to be a creative, my portfolio was in a Disney, a Dreamworks as an animator.
[00:47:27] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:47:27] Terry Crews: And I had scripts that I had written. My whole thing was about being, producing, and writing. Acting was the last thing I was doing security. And they were like, "Hey man, you should act." I was like, yeah, whatever. I was not interested in that, but I had so many people telling me I should try it. I went and tried it. And this was one of those experiences where I was down there just to watch Denzel work and the director, Antoine Fuqua was like, "Hey, man, you want to be in this movie?" And I was like, yeah.
[00:47:55] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:47:56] Terry Crews: He was like, "Look, take your shirt off, go to the roof and I'll put you in the movie." And I was the guy who was flipping pigeons on the roof in Training Day. When you go to that iconic scene with me clapping my hands and the pigeons are flying in the air and Denzel's driving into the cul-de-sac, that was me.
[00:48:13] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:48:14] Terry Crews: And then he said, "Come back every night and I'm going to put you in different spots." So during that big monologue with Denzel, he had me standing right in front of Denzel Washington during that whole "King Kong ain't got nothing on me," you know, all that. He was just mad dog and that's all I did. I remember when the Oscars went down and they showed that scene at the Oscars. My mother was like, "You're in the Oscars." I was like—
[00:48:38] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:48:38] Terry Crews: "No, I'm not at the Oscars. I'm in the scene," you know? But I was just like, dude, I would've been happy if that was it. I really would've been happy if that's all the acting I ever got a chance to do because I love entertainment. Like, love it.
[00:48:53] Jordan Harbinger: I mean, if you're going to have one go at it, being in a movie with Denzel Washington is a good go.
[00:48:58] Terry Crews: Oh, you know what's so funny is years and years and years later, I ran into Denzel at an event and he was like, "Man, I'm so proud of you. Man, I see you—"
[00:49:07] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:49:07] Terry Crews: "—everywhere. And I remember you standing in front of me that whole day and that whole time in that movie." And he was like, "Dude, you doing good, man." And this is no selfies.
[00:49:18] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:49:19] Terry Crews: I don't need that. These are some of those things that you just take with you because he's like the OG. He's the man.
[00:49:25] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:49:25] Terry Crews: You know what I mean? You're not going to get better than Denzel Washington.
[00:49:28] Jordan Harbinger: No. Maybe if Obama comes up and he's like, "Love you're in that movie. Really big fan," but even, he's not an actor.
[00:49:34] Terry Crews: Exactly. Exactly. I mean, he respects what I've become. I looked at my wife and she was there like, "You saw this, right?"
[00:49:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:49:40] Terry Crews: And she was like, "I saw it and I heard it." I just went home like, that's it. I don't need anything else. I don't need anybody to validate me. You know what I mean? This is great.
[00:49:49] Jordan Harbinger: Not anymore. Yeah. I've got validation from Denzel. I don't need it. I don't need to read the comments. Done read the comments.
[00:49:54] Terry Crews: That's it. No more YouTube comments.
[00:49:56] Jordan Harbinger: I know you take work super, super seriously because it's business. Is that how you get the rep that gets you repeat business, repeat offers? Because you say things like, I never leave anything on the table. Even if it's small, silly, like there was a Lip Sync Battle and you're like, "I am going all in." That's your thing.
[00:50:11] Terry Crews: That's my MO. I go all in. I go too all in. I don't have a middle speed. I'm either asleep or I'm a hundred miles an hour. But I also find that is where I find my energy. Even this podcast, I realize you just got to give it up. You spend most of the time resisting the work and you get yourself exhausted. Just start working. You know what I mean? If you know your kitchen's got to get clean, just start and all of a sudden you're like, I got the energy for it. I found that was a good trick because this is one thing I learned in football.
[00:50:47] You know, when we would do training camp, it was usually two days. So you'd have the first practice, and the first practice was always good. And then you go take a nap, and then you go get your lunch and whole thing and you can't move. Literally, you're in the bed, your body can't move, you are sore. You're like, oh my God, you're going to be running full speed in 20 minutes. And you're like, but I can't move. And it's an obstacle. I mean, it's something like you go, I don't know, I'm literally a quadriplegic right now. And then all of a sudden you turn it on and you say, get up and go. Pow. And you're out there running full speed 20 minutes later and you realize it's a trick. You realize it's a mental game.
[00:51:30] And that's where I learned it and I realized, okay, I can do that with anything. So when I'm doing AGT, when I'm doing Brooklyn Nine-Nine, when I'm in a scene and it is long and it's tired and it is late, and whatever, go, go 100 percent right now. It's a trick. And all of a sudden you're like, you're going, you're doing, it's happening.
[00:51:53] Jordan Harbinger: No coffee needed.
[00:51:54] Terry Crews: You know what I mean? Oh, sometimes.
[00:51:55] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Okay. All right, just trying to keep it real.
[00:51:57] Terry Crews: That makes a pre-workout though. You know what I mean? But it's really a mind game. You can talk yourself out of a lot of things, but you can also talk yourself into it. So I decide, let's talk myself into, I just do the things I want to do. If I know I want to do it, then I can go 100 percent. I would never tell anyone to just do things you hate. It makes no sense.
[00:52:21] Jordan Harbinger: It's also a lot harder.
[00:52:22] Terry Crews: It's a lot harder, dude.
[00:52:23] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:52:24] Terry Crews: When I was doing that refrigeration job, I was like, yeah, I'm getting my check at the end of the day. So go into it. But it is hard.
[00:52:31] Jordan Harbinger: I know a lot of people, they say like, "Oh, his attitude is so great." I mean, they see the scene in White Chicks. They're remembering you singing. They see you on AGT. They remember the flute scene or whatever it is. But there's an incident here with The Expendables that I read about here that maybe you didn't have the greatest attitude and a change kind of midway through. You want to take us through that?
[00:52:48] Terry Crews: This is the thing, man. I suffered from what you would call a lack of perspective. I was on the movie and while I was there for a few weeks and I saw that I wasn't working, I wasn't doing a lot of things and I developed a bad attitude. And when I say bad, I was ready to get out of there. Somehow I had pumped myself up to think that somebody owed me something. And listen, it's a trick. It can happen to anybody at any time. You can develop a bad attitude. It only takes a second. A little whining, a little complaining, and you lose your energy to search for answers. It's truly, and I had lost it and I started whining. I was away from my family. I was in, I remember New Orleans and I was like, "Man, they're not using me." And then I had turned it around into a, "Man, yeah, they doing this to the black guy," you know?
[00:53:38] Jordan Harbinger: Oh yeah.
[00:53:39] Terry Crews: And believe me, I already had that story. I was like, "Oh, see, they're just using me." Okay, I'm just going to say my lines and get out of here. And I was horrible. And all of a sudden, dude, there was a voice that was like, "Dude, you're on this movie with some of the biggest action stars of all time and you've never done an action movie. What the hell are you talking about?" And it hit me, man, this cynicism, this mean, crass, just being an idiot. It happens. And I remember just like apologizing to myself like, "Dude, I'm sorry. I got to go back in here tomorrow. And I got to act like I want this job. I have to act like this is my destiny."
[00:54:24] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:54:24] Terry Crews: And I've decided, I had to go back into my mindset where it was like, "Hey man, give a hundred and stop playing around," because again, you waste your time being cynical and complaining. It's like all that energy just is like, it sucks it out of you. It's a drain. I went in the next day and I said, if I had two lines, I'm going to say them with all my heart. If I have one scene, I'm going to give it everything I got. And Sly noticed when I say over the next few days, he's like, "Dude," he said, "man, you are really rocking this now." He said, "I'm going to make you, you going to save my life in this movie." And he rewrote the ending.
[00:55:04] Jordan Harbinger: Wow.
[00:55:05] Terry Crews: He rewrote the movie, dude. And I realized that damn it, that was me. It was me. And a lot of people are going to disagree with me. There's a lot of people going back. Yeah, but there are obstacles and there are people who hate your guts and there are people who that — yes, very, very true. Very, very true. There is racism, there is a lot of problems, but it's still up to you as to what you're going to do about it. It's true. You cannot take away your ability to choose. You can't. And when you take away your ability to choose, you give everybody else power over your buttons. They can maneuver, you change, you do whatever you want. But when I decide I'm going to change this and it's going to be a good experience because I say it's going to be a good experience, and it was. And it was.
[00:55:56] Jordan Harbinger: I love that. I think there's a quote for me that said something like, "Be the solution on set, don't be the problem." It sounds like that dovetails with that. I could imagine there's more to it, but—
[00:56:04] Terry Crews: Oh yeah.
[00:56:05] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:05] Terry Crews: And you know what's funny, even about that whole thing and the way it ended, you know, I had the producer, Avi Lerner, threatened me when I sued William Morris Endeavor for the agent when he accosted me and sexually assaulted me. And we were going to kick you out of Expendables 4. And I was like, fine, okay. And that's when I knew it was okay to let go because I didn't want to do it anyway. I was like, this kind of behavior was going on too long. And I also have to be able to give myself up to people who actually respect me—
[00:56:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:56:40] Terry Crews: —which is another thing too.
[00:56:41] Jordan Harbinger: That's interesting. The sexual harassment stuff, you've talked about it before on Breakfast Club and stuff like that, but just very briefly, what happened?
[00:56:48] Terry Crews: Well, the head of the motion picture department, William Morris Endeavor, this man, he's everybody's agent. He was Eddie Murphy's agent, Sandler's agent, the whole thing. And this dude comes up to me, I'm at a party with Adam Sandler. He grabs me in my privates, right? And I jump back like, "Hey man, what are you doing?"
[00:57:08] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:57:08] Terry Crews: And I don't know what he's on. I don't know what he's doing. And then, he comes back at me, and listen, the whole thing was, and I'm so glad I had spent years in therapy, remember I had already been learning about this revenge versus success thing.
[00:57:21] Jordan Harbinger: I see. Yeah.
[00:57:22] Terry Crews: And I realize if I knocked this guy out, which I don't think anyone could've doubted my ability to do that.
[00:57:30] Jordan Harbinger: And nobody would've blamed you for that.
[00:57:31] Terry Crews: What did you think?
[00:57:31] Jordan Harbinger: He'd grabbed my junk. Oh, okay.
[00:57:33] Terry Crews: But this was the thing. No, but this is the problem, I don't think anybody would've believed me if I'd have told everybody he'd grabbed my junk.
[00:57:40] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:57:40] Terry Crews: If I had already beat him up, oh no. I was the only black man in the whole event, and I weighed 240 pounds and I'm extremely muscular. And people thought, "Oh, that's Terry Crew's been waiting to snap."
[00:57:51] Jordan Harbinger: He's a bully.
[00:57:52] Terry Crews: You're right.
[00:57:52] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:57:53] Terry Crews: I realized that this would've been something that could have set me up for a bad, bad ending. And so I went right to him the next day and I said, "Hey man, your guy was out of bounds." And they told me everything was going to be handled and it wasn't. Then, I went right to the head of William Morris Endeavor, Ari Emanuel, and I was like, "Dude, what are you going to do about this whole situation?" He was like, "You can't do nothing." He's like, "That's it." And I was like, "What are you talking about?" "We're going to suspend him and he's going to lose his title." I was like, "No, man, you can't work. Are you serious? Like, are you really going to put this guy back? Just a slap on the wrist." And so I sued him and it was a big, big deal.
[00:58:37] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:58:37] Terry Crews: But the inspiration for my move was because of the women. When the women came forward at that time, at MeToo, they were called whores, they were called opportunists. They were like being dogged out and this is back on the Internet. And I knew that wasn't the case because I knew it had happened to me. And I also would've felt like a fraud had I just remained silent and let those women get lambasted the way they were getting lambasted. And so I remember putting out these tweets that just told the story in support of what these women were going through. And I didn't even mention names or anything, and the Internet went crazy. But this is the thing, during this time, my wife was right there with me and she saw the whole thing—
[00:59:22] Jordan Harbinger: She saw the whole thing?
[00:59:23] Terry Crews: Oh no, she saw the whole thing and she said, "Terry, there's not a woman on earth that hasn't gone through something like this by the time they're 14 years old."
[00:59:32] Jordan Harbinger: That's horrifying.
[00:59:33] Terry Crews: It is.
[00:59:33] Jordan Harbinger: As a father of a one-year-old daughter, I'm like, I just can't.
[00:59:37] Terry Crews: Dude, she was like, "I'm going to tell you how you got to handle this," and I listened to my wife. And we went through this thing together in the effort to really, what I would call, democratize this thing. We turned something that was viewed as 2D into a 3D conversation. You know what I mean?
[00:59:56] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:59:56] Terry Crews: Because anybody is under this dynamic. It happens to men and women where everybody had thought it was just women going through this thing, but it really put up a real accurate perspective on a big, big problem.
[01:00:11] Jordan Harbinger: And you're able to highlight, "Hey, like look at these abusers try to protect each other in the industry. Look at the coverup, kind of—"
[01:00:16] Terry Crews: Oh, I mean, that was the thing. I mean, that's why the producer called and then said, "If he doesn't drop this case, we're going to kick him off The Expendables 4." I was like, "You can have it." First of all, the legality of what you just did.
[01:00:28] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I'm like, is that, can you do that?
[01:00:30] Terry Crews: Well, that's how arrogant the whole business is. And people tend to say, this is just Hollywood. But just imagine it happens everywhere in any corporation. Hollywood just happens to have TMZ following it.
[01:00:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, right.
[01:00:43] Terry Crews: You know, if you're a tire shop, TMZ doesn't care about you. You know what I mean? Or wherever else you're working, you know?
[01:00:48] Jordan Harbinger: And imagine saying that about any other industry. "Hey, sorry, that's just Best Buy."
[01:00:52] Terry Crews: Yeah.
[01:00:52] Jordan Harbinger: Just get your junk grabbed when you walk in.
[01:00:54] Terry Crews: Hey man, I mean, it happens everywhere, anywhere. My daughters have told me stories but they knew they had to wait years.
[01:01:04] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Because they're like, "I don't want my dad to go murder this dude."
[01:01:06] Terry Crews: Oh, they knew I was like snapping. But now, and I'm on the other side of this, it changed my perspective. I don't know if it's changed the world's perspective because things are still going on, but it's definitely, definitely opened my eyes to everything that goes on. And it's an eye-opener, man. And really I don't regret it. I think it's part of my purpose of being in Hollywood, just along with being on AGT and just along with being a Brooklyn Nine-Nine, it's like, hey, we got to make this a safer town. We can't have people afraid to say things. You can't be afraid, you know? Like, listen, if you're afraid, don't do it. But if you're going to do it, don't be afraid. I decided I was going to do it and I was going all in.
[01:01:53] Jordan Harbinger: Man, I love that. I wonder, has getting famous changed you in your life? This is a dumb question. But what I mean is you still have to be Terry, the dad and husband at home. You can't let that creep in because I feel like that kind of thing can screw up your home life. Especially start reading the positive comments and you're like, "You want me to take out the trash can? Have you seen what they are saying about me on?"
[01:02:13] Terry Crews: Oh, I went through that so bad. I went through that so bad. I was literally that guy. I was like, "I'm not taking out the trash." She was like—
[01:02:20] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:02:21] Terry Crews: "Boy, you better get your butt back in there." But now when I say success is the warmest place to hide, it's one of those things where your family, you can't hide from them. They know who you are. They know. Every time someone will say, "He's so wonderful," and my wife will roll her eyes."
[01:02:37] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, that hurts though.
[01:02:38] Terry Crews: Or my kids will look at me like, "Yeah, but you lost your temper over—" And I'm like, "Shh."
[01:02:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, don't. This guy's going to blog about that. Don't tell him.
[01:02:46] Terry Crews: And I just realized, wow, man, I can really, honestly say that I'm whole. I mean, these last probably 10 years I've been the wholest I've ever been in my entire life, like because it's really about my family first. It's really about that and making these stands publicly and also sharing my stories. A lot of these things are not things you had to find out or through some scandal or I was like, "Terry Crews was digging the pornography. We caught him in a porn place," you know? It wasn't like that. It was like me just talking on Instagram Live or Facebook Live at the time and just really sharing my own struggle to humanize me.
[01:03:28] First of all, there's Hollywood stuff. It's so deceiving, you know what I mean? And I really, it is very, very important that people see me at the grocery store or people see me walking around. They're like, "Oh, you're driving a car?" I'm like, "Yes, I am, dude."
[01:03:41] Jordan Harbinger: That's the bar, you know?
[01:03:42] Terry Crews: People think if somebody is floating you around on a royal throne with four people, it's like, no, dude. Sorry, I'm buying Hamburger Helper today.
[01:03:51] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:03:52] Terry Crews: You know what I mean?
[01:03:53] Jordan Harbinger: Wife is out of town, right?
[01:03:54] Terry Crews: Yeah. That's it. Hey, look, I'm cooking. Okay. But it's very important, and that keeps me in perspective, that keeps me straight. Because when you see me as a human, you might decide you like me, or you might decide you don't. That's okay. That's totally your prerogative, but it helps me in that I am a real human. And it's very refreshing.
[01:04:18] Jordan Harbinger: I agree. It is very refreshing and you're very grounded. I know in 2017 you won Sexiest Man Alive from People Magazine and it's like, that feels good, but that recycling bin is not going to take itself out, so—
[01:04:28] Terry Crews: Yeah, exactly.
[01:04:29] Jordan Harbinger: It's still a coin flip on whether you're getting laid tonight, by the way.
[01:04:32] Terry Crews: In fact, this is funny because that magazine is in the recycling bin.
[01:04:36] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, yeah. Like, oh, that's cute.
[01:04:37] Terry Crews: My wife is like, toink.
[01:04:38] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[01:04:38] Terry Crews: It's over. You know, that's 2017, you know, it's 2023 now. Where are you, buddy?
[01:04:43] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. What have you done for me lately?
[01:04:46] Man, I want to be respectful of your time. Thank you so much for coming in. We all got to smell that Old Spice. I appreciate it.
[01:04:52] Terry Crews: I'm always wearing it too. So good. I love those guys. Jordan, it's great man. Thank you so much. These are awesome questions.
[01:04:58] Jordan Harbinger: Thank you so much for—
[01:04:59] Terry Crews: No, thank you. Thank you.
[01:05:00] Jordan Harbinger: —for that.
[01:05:00] Terry Crews: I appreciate it, brother.
[01:05:04] Jordan Harbinger: We've got a preview trailer of our interview with hip-hop legend, T.I. Harris on he went from committing crimes to committing rhymes, check out episode 262 with Tip "T.I." Harris, right here on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:05:18] Tip "T.I." Harris: Let's expedite this place.
[01:05:18] Jordan Harbinger: That's right.
[01:05:19] Tip "T.I." Harris: Now from where I'm from, we do what we call pouring our own troubles.
[01:05:23] Jordan Harbinger: All right, cheers.
[01:05:25] Tip "T.I." Harris: Cheers. All right.
[01:05:26] Jordan Harbinger: You dropped out of high school. When you were that age, were you thinking, "Oh, I'm just going to sell drugs for a while, then I'm going to become a famous musician"?
[01:05:33] Tip "T.I." Harris: Well, to be perfectly candid with you, that's exactly what I was thinking.
[01:05:36] Jordan Harbinger: Really?
[01:05:37] Tip "T.I." Harris: I was going to sell drugs until I earned myself the opportunity to become a musician or an artist. I found out my girlfriend at the time was pregnant with my oldest son. Quit my job at the airport, completely starred head first into the street. That probably lasted about three or four months, but my probation officer still thought I worked at the airport.
[01:05:57] We had been working on a demo to shop around. It was phenomenal stuff. I said, if you could take me somewhere right now where I could have an opportunity to present myself to somebody, then I'll stop. Jason said, "I know somewhere." And I say, "See, that's why we're on the team together."
[01:06:13] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[01:06:13] Tip "T.I." Harris: So we pull up. Jason walked me into the room, and then immediately I meet Reese and Mello. Three months after that, I was signed. A month before my son was born, I was straight.
[01:06:23] Jordan Harbinger: Your parole officer must have been like, "Oh, great, he's got a record deal. All right. He's going to be back at the airport in like a month and a half," but you are on thin ice, man.
[01:06:30] Tip "T.I." Harris: I mean, to be honest with you, he didn't find out I wasn't at the airport until I told him.
[01:06:33] Jordan Harbinger: He still thinks you worked at the airport.
[01:06:36] For more with T.I., including some tips on how he runs his business here, check out episode 262 with Tip "T.I." Harris right here on The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:06:47] Man, we just ran the clock out on this one. I love it. By the way, anyone out there doing video games, I love to do voiceovers. I'm no Terry Crews, but you just let me know when I can be a character in your game. I'm all in. I've done Grand Theft Auto and a bunch of stuff like that, gangster games. I really enjoy that work. So holler at me and I'll give your game some free love on the show. Can't really beat that, free advertising. Uh, not that big companies that make games give a crap about it, but whatever.
[01:07:10] I love this interview with Terry Crews. I really had a great time. He has a lot of stuff that we talked about before and after the show. He told me a story one Friday night when he was in second grade. He said his dad stomped into the living room. Put on some sad music and basically slumped his chair. And he looked so pitiful sitting there all alone that Terry felt really bad and tiptoed over, put his arms around him, leaned in, and gave him a kiss on the cheek. And his dad, it's so sad that this is one of his memories, right? Early memories. He turned and stared at him in shock and was just kind of almost disgusted by it. And Terry says he backed up so fast that he almost tripped. And that is heartbreaking. It sort of set the tone for his life later on.
[01:07:52] He spoke about lifting weights. We were talking about the gym. He said, "I could make myself look fearsome muscles were like a superpower." And he said, "One day I knew my dad," which of course, remember his dad was super abusive, he said, "I knew my dad was going to go too far one day, and I would be strong enough to need to take him out." And no boy should grow up thinking that. But at the time, that's what he was going through. That was his reality. And the fear that comes through a story like that is just palpable. I think most people hearing something like this thankfully cannot relate at all, but it's not all sort of doom and gloom.
[01:08:24] Terry is kind of a prankster if you can call it that. He told me another story that when he was a student, he was an art student in college, and he needed to make paintings that were progressively better. And I think he was having a big summer, a busy summer, he was doing something else. So what he did is he created four or five paintings each one that was progressively better than the last. He did them all at the same time. So then when he would go to class, he would turn in the paintings in order of improvement. And that way it looked like he was improving. But he just spent all of his time at football practice, which I think is hilarious. So he basically scams his way through art class by using paintings he already made, because he knew what the assignment was going to be. And I don't know why that's funny, but it just sort of shows that he's got tenacity, he's willing to do the work, but he's not necessarily willing to do the work in the way that you're supposed to do the work. And he loved painting and drawing, but he just knew he was never going to make it out of Flint with that. And he was probably right. I mean, fact of the matter is he did pretty well for himself and not necessarily because of his painting skills.
[01:09:21] He also spoke of a fork in the road, if you will, during the movie The Expendables. He started off, he said he had a bad attitude because he wasn't getting paid enough, he wasn't getting used enough. He felt almost entitled, and he just thought to himself, "You know, this is not a winning attitude. This is not going to go well. And here I am in a movie with Sly Stallone and Jason Statham and Arnold Schwarzenegger. I'm just lucky to be at the table." So he shifted his attitude. And came up with lines like, "Remember this sh*t at Christmas." And his idea to be the solution on set, not the problem, changed the way that he looked at his work. And so he's filming The Expendables in Bulgaria, and he paints a really interesting picture of this, by the way, because Bulgaria is kind of, it can be a little sketchy, especially when they were filming it. So he's in the Balkans. There's all these mafia guys that pretty much run everything and they're all staying in these nice hotels. And the mafia guys, of course, are all there too. And he's like, "They're sketchy gangsters in the hotel lobby, and I'm just wanting to go home. But I knew that this was one of my big chances to really do something with this movie." And you heard it. I mean, Sly really turned around when he turned around. And one of the things that made his career what it is today.
[01:10:27] He is really good at the action hero thing, but he's also an actor who just refuses to be typecast. First, it's a big scary dude. Then, he is singing some goofy song in White Chicks. Then, he's playing the flute with his shirt off on America's Got Talent. Then, he is blowing stuff up with The Expendables again. He's got a hell of a lot of range and I asked him to what he attributes that range, and he said, and I'm paraphrasing here, "I constantly get out of my comfort zone. Looking cool is the easiest path to mediocrity. The coolest guy in my high school works at a car wash," and that I did not paraphrase. I thought that was really, really insightful. He went on to say, "I never do anything for money. I do it because something amazing is happening." So he has all these unique experiences and unique paths and weird parts and gigs because he wants the experience. And I think that's a great way to look at things.
[01:11:17] Look, I'm no Terry Crews, but I do a lot of stuff for the experience and I follow a lot of things that I'm interested in solely because I'm interested in them. And that's one, it never feels like work when you're doing that. And two, it can lead to some really incredible things. I mean, this whole podcast was me following my interests to do something like a radio show that nobody would care about in 16, 17, whatever, years later, here I am still following my interests, right? Still just doing what I enjoy. It's that whole "If you do it you love, you'll never work a day in your life," I won't say I never work a day in my life here, but I sure as hell enjoy it when I do.
[01:11:48] Thanks again to Terry Crews. All things Terry Crews will be in the show notes at jordanharbinger.com. Our ChatGPT bot that can make you a custom playlist. Find any promo code, any info from anything we've ever done on this show, including Feedback Friday questions jordanharbinger.com/ai. Transcripts in the show notes, videos on YouTube. Advertisers, deals, discount codes, and hey, ways to support the show, all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. I've said it once, I'll say it again. Please consider supporting those who support the show. I'm at @JordaHarbinger on Twitter and Instagram. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn.
[01:12:21] And I'm teaching you how to connect with great people and manage relationships using systems, software, tiny habits, the same stuff I use every single day. It's our Six-Minute Networking course, and that course is free over at jordanharbinger.com/course. Dig the well before you get thirsty, people. Build those relationships before you need them. Many of the guests on the show subscribe and contribute to that course. Come join us, you'll be in smart company where you belong.
[01:12:44] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Millie Ocampo, Ian Baird, and Gabriel Mizrahi. Remember, we rise by lifting others. The fee for this show is you share it with friends when you find something useful or interesting. If you know a Terry Crews fan or somebody who's interested in the whole Hollywood, how to make it seen or just think this is a great conversation, share this episode with somebody special. The greatest compliment you can give us is to 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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