Eric Thomas is one of the Nations top motivational speakers and explains what he learned from Warren Buffett, why crying, blaming, or making excuses is not going to change the situation, and the importance of finding that “one thing” that will take you over the top
You Owe You Video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Oxz060iedY
Website – https://etinspires.com/start
Are you gonna need no more sleep? What’s your name? Is it more dry. You need more focus. You need more execution. Execution is worshiped. Execution is the only thing that matters in business. Not Sleep only execution.
Thrive nation. You are in for a laser show this morning or this afternoon or whenever you decide to consume today’s podcast because we are interviewing the hip hop preacher, the man with the plan. Eric Thomas, welcome on to the thrive time show. How are you sir?
Oh Man, I am excited all of that. Fantabulous so phenomenal season, man. I’m living my best life and I’m just left New York doing some work for the NBA rookie the rookies coming in, man. And it’s just been, just been a great year, man. I’m ready to get up. I’m ready to in new year off strong.
I love that you said the word fantabulous. I thought I was the only person who said fantabulous consistently, so I’m going to got that from you, but all right, I’m going to give you a mega point for that. Okay. Now I want to ask you because you had a ton of success, huge success. People are looking you up on Instagram right now, millions of followers. But let’s go back to the beginning. Let’s go, let’s go back to the, to the beginning. What was life like growing up for you? You know, where did, where did, where did this all start?
Yeah, we’ll just start it. Not, you know, I’d probably say 16, 17 is where it kind of started for me. I left home when I was 16 and you know, just for real man ready to do my all day, I just kinda felt like, you know, my upbringing, you know, my mom lied to me about who my biological father was. Much respect as my mom and my boss, my, my father who raised me. But I just like, man, I got to go do things on my own. And when I was homeless, man, life is, you know, life is real. And I kinda, you know, knocked me upside the head and say, Hey, you said we
Ranger, but now you’re on your own. And things still aren’t going well, you know, so if you’re going to make your dreams and goals can become a reality, you know, you had to get with kid, you’re gonna have to make some different decisions. And so I eventually went from being homeless and a high school dropout to getting my GED and going to college. So that was the beginning. Rick. Very rebellious, you know, very stubborn. You know, I’m one of the kids. I’m a do what I want to do when I want to do it. And that to me getting kicked out of school, that led me to get kicked out the house and you know, just having a real, real marginal, you know, marginal life. And then like I said, he was gonna Start, got my GED, went off to college down in Huntsville, Alabama.
And that’s where the real journey began. But I stopped being a victim and I started being a victor. I stopped blaming other people for where I was and started taking full responsibility. And when I stopped, you know, a wishing for nothing hand. I wish my parents had been older when they, you know have, you know, wished they would’ve been married. You know, I wish, I wish, I wish I was like, Yo, he, you got a hand. At least you have a hand play the hand that you were dealt with. And you know, let’s see where the, see where the chips fall. And based on what you just said earlier, I think the chips eventually, you know, fell in a good place.
Now I, I can’t speak to this because I am the pasty as I’m like a Keith van Horn white. I’m like, I’m like Casper the white band. Okay. I’m so, so pale. It’s amazing. I’m the button, the Pale male. So I can’t speak to this and therefore I’m going to ask you to speak to this. There are people we’ve had on this show who are, are women, they’re minorities, people who have grown up. I used to stutter until I was 13. But I came from a family where we didn’t have any money really growing up. But for somebody out there who’s, who’s a minority or a woman or somebody who feels like they were raised in a single-parent home and they just, whatever reason are in that cycle of being, of being a victim in the world, the world cheers for victims. We say, Oh, you’re a victim. Don’t worry about it. So help somebody right now who’s, who’s been a victim. Everyone around them says, hey, you, you are a victim. You grew up this way and you know what? You’re justified to not have success. What would you say to that person if they’re saying, Eric Thomas, just give it to me real and straight? I’m tired of being a victim. Helped me get out of that funk.
Well, you know, I’m gonna be honest for me, you know, I remember seeing a clip from Kevin Garnett. He was playing for the Miss Minnesota Timberwolves. He was like, you know, he was an all-star. He was making over a hundred million dollars, you know, and he was crying when an interview with John Thompson, you know what? John Thompson was like, front, you got everything. Why are you crying? You know? And he said, look, I didn’t come to the NBA to Lubes and I’m losing, I’m losing. And I thought to myself, here’s a man, you know, who’s on top of the world and he’s not satisfied because he’s losing. And I got to a point in my life and I want to talk to every victim where you gotta not be satisfied with losing. You know, you got to look losing in the face and go, there are too many opportunities in this world.
There’s too much money to be made. There are too many healthy relationships to be here. You have too much of the world to see, to travel and experience. I know if you live in America, this is one of the richest countries in terms of resources in the world. It makes absolutely no sense to sit there and cry because crying is not going to change the situation. Why did it, it’s not gonna change us. Blaming other people is not going to change the situation. And so for me it was, I’m tired of losing. I dropped out, my father dropped out, my grandfather dropped out. My father was, you know, a substance abuse. My, my, my uncles, maybe my grandfather, I’d never met him. So I don’t know. But I was tired of losing. I was tired of seeing other people on the other side of life flying, you know driving nice vehicles, living in Nice homes and taking their kids to Disney world.
You know, just living the American dream. And I said to myself, if I live in the same country, if I’m living in the same space, if I’m walking the same streets, if I have access to the same stuff that they have access to what I’m about to start winning, and I am about to create a legacy of winning my family from this point forward will be a dynasty to reckon with. So for all my victims, yes, you were born perhaps on the warm side of the street. Yes, your father wasn’t there. Yes, you are abused off and yes, you have every right, every right to walk in that defeat. But I challenge you to get on the other side of it because as a victim and our Ivig door, I’m just trying to kill you guys. This light is way sweeter. This life, it’s much sweeter than the life I lived before because when I was a victim of, but now as a door, the powers in my ed and I am the boss of me, I am the boss of me and I get to decide how I live. So it all comes out here. Give it a good and come on this side because this side is a much greater size.
You, you have said that when you want to succeed as bad as you want to bring, then you’ll be successful. You’ve said when you want to succeed, as bad as you want to breathe, then you’ll be successful. You are the hip hop preacher. You are a, I would love for you to share what that means. When you say, when you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you will be successful. What does that mean?
Well, first of all, you noticed, I didn’t say when you want to eat as bad as you want to because you can go without eating for some have gone up to 30 days. So you can go, you can go without eating for 30 days. Notice I didn’t say when you want to drink water as bad as you want, because you can go two or three days without water and survive. I said, when you want to stick as bad as you want to three, because you can only go a few minutes without breathing before you lose your lungs. So when you will make to that level of intensity, it means that you’re going to put forth a certain amount of energy you’ve ever seen. Anybody choking and they lost their breath or somebody with asthma, you know, gasping for air. There is this intensity. There is this focus there. Is this dry too? Like I gotta survive. I’ve gotta, I’ve gotta live, I gotta do whatever it takes to get that next, that next breath. And so when you want to succeed on that level, there is nothing when you’re that desperate when you’re that home greed, when you’re that driven, when you’re that focused, there’s nothing you can’t accomplish. The problem is most people kind of want to succeed. Most people think succeeding is a good idea, but very few people want it as bad as they want to breathe.
What am I a dear friends? His name is Paul Pressey. You probably ran into him around your NBA journeys here, but Paul Pressey coached in the NBA for 20 plus years. His last stop was the assistant coach on the Los Angeles Lakers during Kobe’s final season. And he talked about the intensity of Koby Bryant. I mean, it’s such greater than that of the average player. It’s like two or three times more intense. Kanye West shares that energy. President Trump shares that energy. It’s this, it’s this thing that Kanye calls and Trump calls dragon energy. It’s this Mamba mentality that Coby has. Can you explain, cause you work with NBA players right now, you, you, you’re in the locker rooms and in 2012, Lebron James, the great one, King Lebron James said that you were part of his, his part of his inspiration for winning that championship. Can you explain the kind of intensity that Lebron needed to win that championship and maybe how you helped to inspire him.
What is the thing? You know, Lebron wanted to win a championship prior to that time frame, but so did Colby, you know, so, so did Michael Jordan, you know, so did the Pistons, you know, so, so did the Spurs Tim Duckett, you know so today and so when people have to realize is that when you want something to that level, you know, when you want something to that level, when you pop it something to that level, you have thousands, yea, millions of people who may covet the exact same thing that you want. And so order for you to achieve what thousands of other men may be millions of other people want. Yup. Then you have to be willing to do what they are not willing to do. You have to be willing to work harder than they’re willing to work. You have to go further like star track go where no man has gone before.
Like that’s literally what you have to do. And I think Lebron had an idea of what it took to perhaps won the championship, but I don’t know that he knew what it actually took to win a championship. And so years he had gone and never won and he missed. He realized that, Yo, I got a phenomenal skillset, but I don’t just need a phenomenal skill. I need a phenomenal wheel. That’s where my message is and that’s why we provide the intensity. Any imagery that we would give, because skillset will take you to the championship. But skill set won’t win it. It takes will, it takes heart, it takes effort, it takes commitment. And that’s what I helped Lebron and the Cleveland Cavaliers to understand that year is that you gotta want it as bad as you got it. You want to breathe, you’ve gotta, you’ve gotta every place.
You have to be a a hundred percent first, second quarter, first quarter, second quarter, third quarter, fourth quarter overtime, pre, pre warmup, warmup treatment afterwards. Like I had to, I needed to let Lebron know, you know, to the intensity of that message. You know that look guys, you gotta you gotta you gotta want it more than the next man wants it because he’s had these wanted before. So he knows what it takes, right? He knows exactly what these teams that you play, Lebron, they already won. And so I had to let Lebron know through that of course video that you’re going to have to take your intensity to the next level. Your skillset is there, but now your will is going to have to match your skill and if your Wilkin match your skill, there’s absolutely nothing you won’t be able to accomplish.
You know, with our our coaching program it’s, it’s really weird cause we, we only work with 160 clients and I’m, I have no plans on ever growing it. And people say why? And I’m like, cause there’s only so much dragon energy that I have to sit there and to impart that on people. Now I grew up without any money. So when I grew America’s largest DJ entertainment company at the time for weddings, it was called DJ connection.com. I personally cold called every day at least a hundred cold calls every single day to get one appointment to book one deal every two days. And then I had worked at Applebee’s target in direct TV at the same time I did all that. So I, I can’t plant a fruit if I’m not that kind of tree. You know what I mean? I can’t, I can’t plan on, I can’t give that fruit if I’m not that route.
So I’m not a scalable thing and you’re not a scalable thing, but you’ve found a way to take your route in your fruit and to share it with people. So I would just like to pretend for a second to the listeners out there, go to your website and they decide to be a coaching client of yours. Okay. So there’s a seize. There’s a CEO listing right now. We have about a half million listeners. Most of them are are, are owners of something. They reach out to you and they say, Eric Thomas, I want that one on one coaching, and they say, Eric, I’m going to, I’m in a Rut man where I have a new idea every week and I never follow through. You know what I mean? I used to have the energy, but I kind of lost it. My company’s worth, you know, 20 million bucks. I’m stuck in that Rut. Could you give that, that person that, that pep talk right now who maybe had success 10 years ago and now they’re stuck in that doom loop of a new idea every week, it never gets executed, a new idea. It never gets executed. What would you, I just want to, I want to give the listeners a sneak peek to what the Eric Thomas Coaching experience looks like.
What I’m saying, you know, here’s the problem. The problem is you may may be the dream or the goal or the idea. You’ve made that into a god and not execution, right? C, C C when you make execution to go, that’s all you do is execute. So when you say, man, I’ve got a good idea, or good idea, may never, I mean, let’s just be honest, a good idea may never come into full fruition. Well, when you make the goal execution, what you begin to do is say, what am I not doing? Like what’s the gaps? What adjustments do I need to pay? What resources do I need to bring in? What people do I need to bring in to make this thing happen? Right? And so you may realize as a CEO that like I don’t, I don’t have it like I don’t, I don’t have the skill set right now, or I don’t have the resources or I don’t have the talent.
So who do I bring in? And so that’s why when you’re dealing with ITI, you’re dealing with e t e t’s, focuses, execute, execute, execute, execute it. That’s the only goal. The only goal is execution. So I would say to them that you’ve gotta be a little bit more forceful, a little bit more, driving a little bit more demanding. You’ve got to push the idea more, push yourself more, push your people more. There’s gotta be more, there’s gotta be more that because the goal is execute, finish, get it done. And so everything you do has to put your people and you in a position where you execute and get it done.
So what if, what if, what if the person listens to you that the coaching client and if they’re receptive to that, and then what if they were I w I’m almost kind of scared. But what if they were to say to you, I really want it, but I just need some more sleep?
Well, you don’t need no more sleep. What you need is more cry. You need more focus, you need more execution. Execution is worshiped. Execution is the only thing that matters in business. Not Sleep only execution.
So I, I failed to ask you this because I always set my alarm for three, but to celebrate being on my podcast, I set my alarm for two 58 this morning, my friend. So I would like for you to share with us what do the first four acts I’ve been, I’ve been self employed since I was basically 16 I’m 38 now, so for 22 years I’ve been setting that freaking alarm for 3:00 AM I used to set the alarm for 3:00 AM cause my dad worked the night shift and when he came home from the gas station, that’s the only time I could see him was when he came back from the night shift. And so I wanted to see my dad. So I set my alarm and now I just kind of wake up that time. But what do I do? You wake up everyday. Walk us through the first four hours of the t Eric Thomas Experience. What are the first four hours of your day look like?
Our prayer and meditation. Eric Thomas needs to spend time with Eric Thomas. Eric Thomas needs to be the best. Eric Thomas. He could be, what did I do right yesterday? What did I do wrong yesterday? What adjustments need to be made? Too many of us are focusing on an idea and we don’t spend enough time, folks in ourselves, the second hour running or some type of exercise, the third hour meeting with my accountability partners and setting the date, what are we going to be doing? What would it take to get that done? We called each other throughout the day. Did you get it done in the last four? I last hour spent out with my wife, my family, and then food won’t have power. Let’s go to work.
Hmm. Now you are, are a source of inspiration for so many, but you had to start somewhere. I mean, you, you have 1.2 million followers, probably have 1.2 1 million followers. As of right now on Instagram. You’re, you’re growing just moment by moment. How did you get the first 10 followers? How did you build your, your platform? A lot of listeners out there aren’t blessed to have a platform as, as big as what you have or as big as what we have. How did you get those first 10 subscribers or the first 10 followers or how did you get your voice out there?
Consistency. Every single Monday. Don’t look at the numbers. Stop trophy watching stopped scoreboard watching every single Monday. He get the video out. Come rain, sleet, snow. Get the video out. Don’t talk about the video. Don’t plan the video. Come on. Don’t structure the video. Get the video every Monday here it has to get out. Respond to the one person that’s watching the video. Tell them thank you for watching the video. Tell a friend, share the video, butch, like on the video, come back next Monday. Watch the video and make sure that the content from Monday to Monday gets better and better and better.
Let’s say for a second, did I actually am dropping knowledge bombs and I’m putting out consistent content? Okay. I coach with a lot of pastors, work with a lot of heads of companies and let’s say they are putting it out there like the content is king. They’re putting out there. They’re putting that content out there and now they’re developing some followers. They’re getting some leads. They’re getting some growth or getting some advertisers, whatever they’re, they’re starting to get that traction going on. But now Eric, you know it is, you hire one person, you hire two, you hire three. Pretty soon you have the Wu Tang clan. You got the whole clique, got the whole group there. But one guy doesn’t want to be part of the group anymore. You know, ODB wanted to go do his own thing. ODB says, I gotta do my own thing. What do you do? How did you handle internally when somebody no longer wants to be a part of the eet group? Somebody doesn’t want to be a part of the Wu Tang clan anymore. What do you do?
I feel, Oh man, I’m so happy. I’m grateful for the time that they spent with us. I’m grateful for the memories. We May, I’m grateful for what we created as a route, but very few MBA and a fail major league baseball, major league soccer. Very few of these teams looked the exact same from year to year. Very few of them have. None of them have the exact same roster that they had the year before. I don’t expect that I had a same roster every year, but I do expect that same vision, the same goals, the same tenacity, so whoever’s on the team for that year, that’s what we blend with. That’s the goal. We thank those that played with us last year. We got a new team. Same mission, same energy. Let’s go execute.
Now what if somebody has quit mentally? I’m sure you’ve seen this before. Somebody has quit mentally, but they physically keep showing up. You know what I mean? They, they, they had the, they quit mentally and you know it. You can sense that something in that or us, something in that and their frequency. It just feels a little bit off. How do you handle that internally when you have more of that passive aggressive quitting where somebody just fails to deliver anymore? They did. They did. They don’t. Maybe they used to execute, but they don’t, but they still keep showing up. How do you handle that?
I am that by helping them find a new job. You, you, you, you’ve exhausted all your resources, you work hard for me, you put in the work and now you’re ready for that new assignment and I’m going to help you as your CEO, your chief, you know, as you’re tapped in, I’m going to help you find that new appointment because apparently this appointment is no longer in your heart. You no longer, you no longer eat this and sleep this and drink this. You’re no longer passionate about this. So I’m going to help you find, I’m going to start the process of helping you find that new assignment that you could be passionate about, that, that may not necessarily be in our company.
There’s a lot of listeners out here who are discovering you for the first time right now and they’re going to go Eric Thomas, what’s the one, if there’s one youtube, but if I could put a link on today’s show notes on the thrive time show podcast to one specific video you’ve put out, that might be the best or one of the best samples of you. If someone’s going to do a sample and try out for the first time, what’s maybe the one you’d encourage somebody to check out
You? Oh, you you. Oh, you stopped. You know, I find it funny that if somebody does you wrong, you, you know, you’re so upset with that person. You know you don’t want to talk to him anymore. You know you’re, you’re, you’re frustrated with that person. But when you don’t do what you’re supposed to do, you don’t reprimand yourself in the way you reprimand a stranger. If somebody else is late or somebody else doesn’t follow through where they don’t execute for you, you got an attitude. You’re talking bad about that person, but you don’t hold yourself accountable. I would watch you owe you because you owe it to you to be everything that you’re capable of being. And you need to hold you accountable and you need to take ownership of your life and you need to give 120% to you and you need to stop making excuses and you need to look at demand in the mirror and deal with man in the mirror. If I had a choice, it would be you. Oh, you.
What would you say to somebody out there who is the owner of a company and they’re always late, late to meetings, late for deadlines, late to deliver what they promised? Maybe they’re, maybe they’re a contractor and they delay miss deadlines. They’re an author. They miss deadlines. They’re late for their staff meetings. What would you say to that person who maybe you’re a coach, maybe you’re coaching someone right now and they are chronically late?
You know, I would say to that person, you are only as good as your practice. You can’t outperform your practice. You can’t actually run a marathon if you’ve never practiced for a marathon. You listen to me, you can’t run five or six miles and won a marathon. You, you cannot outperform your practice.
I supposed to be the franchise player and we in here talking about practice. Well, coach, I mean, listen, we talking about practice, not a game, not a game, not a game. We talking about practice, not a game. Not, not, not the game that I go out there and, and die for and play every game like is my last not the game we’re talking about practice man. I mean how silly is that when we’re talking about practice? I know I supposed to be there. I know I supposed to lead by example. I know that and I’m not, I’m not shoving in the side, you know, like it doesn’t mean anything. I know it was important. I do, I honestly do. But we talking about practice, man, what are we talking about? Practice you,
You cannot outperform your practice. So as a CEO, if you’ve got these dreams and goals of being a multimillion-dollar company, $1 billion in this judge, trillion-dollar industry, you can’t possibly dominate in that space. If you can’t be to work on time if you can’t give 120% to the meetings, if you can’t give a hundred practice, are we talking about practice? We’re talking about blackness and you can’t be great. You can’t be showtime if you can’t practice like it’s showtime. If you can’t perform in the dark by certainly you can’t perform in the light. And so it’s not about being the work on time. It’s about practicing performing at the highest level and every single thing you do, everything you do, you have to be 120% so that’s what I would say to the person who says practice. We talking about practice. Absolutely. We’re talking about practice because you can’t outperform your practice.
Final question for you here, my friend, you, you have the floor. We have about a half-billion folks listening all over the world to this podcast. What is the one action step you’d encourage all the listeners to take? Should they go to your website? Is there may be an audio you’d encourage them to check out you should they, well, what, what, what is the action step you would encourage all the listeners to take today?
So, so I believe that was keeping us from being the best CEO we could ever be is not what we already know. I believe that the next level of growth for every single CEO is finding the gap. When you are the Cleveland Cavaliers with Lebron James and the Golden State Warriors with step curry, you guys are on the same level in terms of talent. Is that one film you watch? Is that one thing you pick up that one nuance from the team is that one play that you do at takes you over to top. And I would say that everybody that is listening, we all need to find out what that gap is. And so I would invite them to go to e t inspires.com and go to what we call the extreme execution test assessment and take that extreme execution assessment and find out what’s that one small thing? What’s that one gap?
I remember sitting in a room with Warren Buffett. I remember being in the room with Warren Buffet and sitting there and listening to every single word Warren Buffett said. And I was just thinking, okay, what adjustment do I need to make? And he began to talk about investing. And I promise you at that time I was not investing in the way he was talking about it. And I ended up eventually becoming getting equity in a solar company. It was, it was one thing he said about investment. And I was like, well, I’m doing this and I’m doing this and I’m doing that. And I could hear him say, I’m not interested in what you are doing. What you need to focus on is what are you doing? I left that day and sat down with an and said everything I was doing and say, Eric Thomas, here’s an opportunity that you’re missing.
And so I want to say that every CEO does listening. He inspires back. Tom is a tet extreme execution assessment. Either you will or your staff, take that test, find that one small gap, make the adjustment. So, so when you finished, we’re going to help you make your next move your best move, and then when you make your next move your best move, we’re going to make the rest of our lives the best of our lives in the rest of our careers, the best of our careers. That’s the greatest advice I could give is don’t look at what you’re doing phenomenally. Look at that small gap. And make the adjustment.
We end every show around here with a boom and boom stands for big, overwhelming optimistic momentum. And I’m sure nobody in the world says the word boom better than you. So if you’re prepared, can we end the show with a boom? Are you prepared for the countdown? And then ending with the boom? Are you ready? All right, here we go. Great.
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