Join host Brett Gilliland in this inspiring episode of the Circuit of Success podcast as he chats with Jim Harshaw Jr., a renowned coach and mentor. They discuss the power of clarity in achieving goals, the importance of surrounding yourself with high-performing individuals, and the value of daily habits for personal and professional growth. Jim shares stories of individuals who have achieved remarkable success through the consistent practice of goal-setting and accountability. Discover how the productive pause, journaling, and focused reflection can provide clarity of action and peace of mind, leading to an elevated level of performance in all areas of life. Tune in and be motivated to embrace clarity, set meaningful goals, and take intentional action to create your own path to success.

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Brett Gilliland: [00:00:00] Welcome to the Circuit of Success. I’m your host, Brett Gilland, and today I’ve got Jim Haw with me. Jim, how you doing?

Jim Harshaw Jr: Great, man. Great to

Brett Gilliland: meet you, Brett. Great to be with you. Uh, you are in Charlottesville, Virginia. What’s cooking in Charlottesville today?

Jim Harshaw Jr: Charlottesville’s. Good man. I’m Pittsburgh Native or, but, uh, born in, born and bred up there, but, um, Charlottesville’s home now going to the University of Virginia.

Tried leaving a couple times and it didn’t work. This place has a gravity to it, so uh, it sucked you

Brett Gilliland: back in. Yeah.

Jim Harshaw Jr: Yeah. Wipe. That’s awesome. Four kids. We ruin our roots here. We love

Brett Gilliland: it. How old are the

Jim Harshaw Jr: kids? Nine through 17. So two boys and two girls. So we got three teenagers now and a nine year old. And, uh, so it’s, you know, life is busy.

It’s, uh, it takes effort to stay balanced. Yeah. And, and to keep everything, uh, everything moving the right direction. And in all the areas of your life, which is really. It’s the crux of what I do

Brett Gilliland: with people. That’s right. That’s right. Well, we must be in the exact [00:01:00] same boat. My youngest just turned nine on Saturday, so I’ve got a nine.

My 13 year old just turned 13 two Fridays ago and then a 15 and a 17 year old. So that’s exact same ages. Yeah. Maybe we’ll just stay in this exact same, uh, tone for the podcast was talk about being a father of four kids and how crazy it’s. Yeah. Yeah. We, we could talk for data that, absolutely. Well, you are a, uh, former division one, uh, all American athlete, internationally recognized TEDx speaker and a personal performance coach.

Uh, you’ve had, you’ve impacted hundreds of thousands of lives across the world, helping clients and audiences increase resilience. Maximize potential and build high performing teams. And so some of those things is what we’re gonna talk about today. But before we do that, if you can, man, just give us a little lay of the land, what’s made you the man you are today, and tell us a little bit about that upbringing and where you’re at today.


Jim Harshaw Jr: Um, so grew up in Western Pennsylvania. Like I said, I’m a, I’m a blue collar kid. Grew up in a small town. Uh, dad was a construction worker, [00:02:00] mine was a secretary. Blue collar, hardworking folks. You know, um, kinda always had the mindset that success was for other people, and that carried over into my wrestling and.

You know, I’ve never achieved any of my goals in wrestling in high school. Uh, my goal is to be a state champion. Never, never got on, never won a state championship, never even got onto the podium at the state championship. So it didn’t even come close. But I worked hard and got good grades night, but good grades and good enough to, uh, between that, between my grades and wrestling, it opened up the door for me to get into the number one public.

Academic university in the country at the University of Virginia. And so got to UVA and, and just felt like I was over my head there. I was, you know, everybody on the wrestling team was a state champion or a three time or two time state place winner. I was none of those. Uh, academically, like I said, I got in because of wrestling.

Um, you know, even. Socially, you know, [00:03:00] it’s a, it’s a white collar, sort of affluent school and you know, I I, we didn’t have a whole lot growing up, you know, and yeah, so it was, it was a definite point in life where I thought to myself like, can I, this is the next level. Can I make it at the next level? Can I find success here?

Do I belong here? A lot of doubt, a lot of uncertainty. And five years later I graduate with an undergraduate degree and a master’s degree. Wow. Uh, I was a three-time ACC champion ncaa, all-American Division One American. Uh, I was ranked on the Olympic level in the United States at that point. I was invited to live in train at the Olympic Training Center as an Olympic hopeful.

So complete transformation happened in that time at Virginia.

Brett Gilliland: So what, what, boil that back for us. If you can like, boil that down for us, I should say, like, what was it about that? Right. If you come in and I’m, I’m using air quotes for those not watching and just listening. Maybe if you were average right.

You don’t win. I think you said [00:04:00] three ACC championships. Yeah. Right. And so, right. That doesn’t just happen, man. So what clicked for you to take that mindset from I’m, I’m mediocre average to I’m, I’m one of the best.

Jim Harshaw Jr: Yeah, yeah, great question. So, I, I couldn’t put it into, into words for a long time because after I got outta college, I ended getting into coaching and I ended up as the young, I was, I was a division one head coach.

I was the youngest division one head coach in the country. I got coached for about a decade, got outta coaching, started my first business, and that was successful. I sold that, started my next business, raised some Angel Capital, built this technology company, and about two years into that, I realized that everything I’m trying to build for my family, I is crumbling around me.

I, I had a, a. Failing business. We had debt up to our eyeballs, wasn’t spending enough time with my wife and kids. I was just so single-minded, focused on one thing. Like I wasn’t, I was single-minded, focused on wrestling, and I was single-minded focused in this [00:05:00] business. And, um, so I was, you know, not paying attention to, to my wife or my kids.

I wasn’t working out. I was in the worst physical shape of my life. I know. I was, I was broken. Broken at that point. Mm. And so to get back to the point of, you know, what was it during that time at Virginia that. Turned me from, from sort of underperformer to peak performer. I was trying to figure that same thing out.

I’m laying there in bed as I’m closing down this business. I’m, you know, you know, pulling the plug on this thing and I’m starting to look for jobs and, you know, I’m on like Craigslist, you know, like looking for jobs, you know, scrolling past jobs for like paper boys and unpaid internships and thinking to myself like, like, this wasn’t this, this wasn’t supposed to be my trajectory.

Like, like I didn’t, you know, I thought I’d be further along at this point in my career. And, and so I thought to myself like, what was in place in my life that helped me go from underperformer to peak performer? That totally transformed me when I was wrestling and people talk about all these great life lessons that you learn in sports.

Like, like, I, I need them now because I don’t know if I didn’t [00:06:00] learn ’em or, or I wasn’t paying attention, but I definitely need them now. And so I was laying there. I remember it was like LA laying there at night. One night next to my wife, she was asleep in bed and I’m like staring at the ceiling in the dark.

I’m thinking to myself like, what, what, what was in place then? It’s not in place now. Right. And I realized it was like a camera lens coming into focus. There were, there were four things, four very distinct things that were in place then that were not in place at that moment. And the, and the first one is this.

I had a very clear vision for what success looked like for me. And it was based upon my values. Okay? So I had this vision, this very clear vision, and, and it was based upon my values. And you know, when you’re an athlete, the, the vision for success, it’s pretty clear, but you get out into the real world. I.

It’s, it’s undefined, right? We, we have so many different things, you know, shiny objects and things that we want, and it’s like, what does success actually look like for me? What is that clear vision that I’m pursuing and what is it based [00:07:00] on? And to be honest, when I was wrestling, I couldn’t have told you my core values like I can today.

But I knew I wanted to be tough. I wanted to be respected. I wanted to go on to success after wrestling, like so many of my heroes and mentors did before me, and. So, so I, that was the first piece is I had this, this clear vision in these values, and then the second piece of four, Is I had goals that aligned with those values, not goals that aligned with, you know, what the mass media tells you that you should want or what you see on social media.

Yeah. Or what you see parked in your neighbor’s driveway. But goals that aligned with Jim with who I was at a deep foundational level. Because when you have that failing in, in, in adversity and setbacks, They’re not quite irrelevant, but certainly the pain and the impact that those have on you is, is significantly less.

You can be resilient. You can keep getting up one more time. You can [00:08:00] do the hard work. And I make a distinction between hard work and inspired action. I mean, wrestling is known for, for being a tough sport and the hard work that we put in, but really it’s, it’s inspired action. I was inspired. To do the things that I had to do to get to where I got to, to get onto the podium and national championships, to be an Olympic hopeful, I was inspired to do that.

It wasn’t hard work. I mean, it was hard work of course, in the sort of the, the, the traditional sense, but Yeah. But you loved It was really, I was inspired to do it. Right, and, and so, The, the one caveat I’ll I’ll make here is like, again, I said earlier that there, I had a single-minded focus, um, when I was wrestling and I had single-minded focus with this business that failed in the real world.

You know, guys like you and I, Brett, we can’t have a single-minded focus. We have, you know, we have our careers, we have our health and wellness, we have our families. There’s so much at stake here, more than just, you know, winning a wrestling match or winning a championship, right? So that’s the second piece.

And then the third part was, I had what I call an environment of excellence. I had coaches around me, like [00:09:00] coaches who had walked the walk. They knew how to get me from where I was to where I wanted to go. They held me accountable. They asked me the hard question. They kicked me in the ass if I need a kick or help me course correct, if that’s what I needed.

They could see my blind spots. Um, I was around. You know, teammates, like, like-minded people going through the same ups and downs, going through the, the same successes and the same failure had similar goals as me. So this is this environment that I had around me, this environment of excellence that again, it, you know, when I had this business that failed, like.

I didn’t have that. I wasn’t surrounded by the right people. Not just in in my life, but also in my, my personal life, in my health and fitness. Uh, I mentioned to you an organization called F three before we started chatting here. Yeah. It’s this men’s workout group that I’m part of here in Charlottesville, and I’m actually.

I’m on the Advisory Council for the, the National Foundation of the organization as well, but it’s just a group of dudes who show up every morning. Not every morning, but several mornings a week. And we do really hard workouts. We worked out at [00:10:00] five 30 this morning and it was really freaking hard, and this is part of my environment of excellence.

I know these guys are waiting for me. I. Uh, there, there’s a community of guys who are willing to go through hard things at, at, at o o dark 30 in the morning. And, and it’s this environment of excellence. So we have to craft that. It, it just exists by default in as you’re, when you’re an athlete, especially at the division one level.

Uh, certainly at the Olympic level, uh, military folks can, can understand this because there’s an infrastructure there as well. Um, so that’s the third piece. And then the fourth and final piece is you have to have a plan. To follow through. Like it’s one thing to identify your vision and your values and have these aligned goals and have this environment of excellence, but

Brett Gilliland: you know, I.


Jim Harshaw Jr: get sick and that throws you off, or cars break down, or global pandemics happen, happens, whatever it might be. Things throw you off course and then you never get back on the path. And if you, if you drift through life and you, you’ve done this [00:11:00] work, but you’re not following through on, you don’t have any structured systematic plan, execute and follow through, even on the bad days, in bad weeks and bad months in bad quarters.

You’re, you know, it’s gonna be something you did. It was great. It’s helpful. I set these goals, but, uh, I don’t even remember what they are now. And, and that’s where, that’s where most people fall off.

Brett Gilliland: So what would you recommend to those people that, uh, maybe they don’t have the group around them that you had at Virginia to help you get to that point?

Right. Maybe they’re working in an environment that doesn’t foster that. Right. Not everybody’s lucky to have that. So for that person that is looking for more, that wants to be around more, Um, what advice would you have for them if they don’t have it in their everyday

Jim Harshaw Jr: world now? Those people are out there and, and we have to actively seek them.

You have to actually create a, like an action item, a plan, a goal to get around those people. And, and it’s, it might be as simple as getting into a business networking group, right? Getting around other, other business leaders or entrepreneurs. [00:12:00] Um, get, get into, uh, a workout group like I talked about, right?

Find other pe. If you don’t have F three in your area, you can. Google F three, and you can find out if it’s in your area. I know where you’re in St. Louis. There’s tons of those. But like get around, find ways to get around these people. Um, uh, church is another one, you know, like, doesn’t matter, like wherever you can find people who are operating at the level that you want to operate, like go get around those people.

So for me, I, you know, looking back on my career, I, I gave a TEDx talk titled Why I Teach My Children To Fail, which was largely about my wrestling career, which was mostly failure, uh, until I got onto the podium with the national championships and, and that like, I, I, I gave that TEDx talk only it, it started from a failure.

Uh, I, I spoke at an event and I was, I was terrible. I was nervous. I was like, just did, it’s a horrible job. It was embarrassing. You know, I’m like, I gotta fix this. Well, who do I know? Or how, how can I get around to other people who either are working on [00:13:00] fixing this or have already fixed this? Well, Toastmasters.

And so I joined the local Toastmasters, started giving speeches in a safe environment and learning how to give talks. And lo and behold, one day an opportunity came up. To, to give a TEDx talk. I applied, I got chosen, there was like six, they had like this whole lineup of great speakers and they had one spot for a community speaker.

And I applied and there was 65 people applied, 25 of us got a chance, sort of do an audition in front of 500 people. It was an audition. Wow. And then they did an audience vote and I won that and I got to speak on the main stage. And, but it’s like, you know, uh, luck is when opportunity meets preparation, they say.

Right. So I was prepared for that. But I was around people. It was a group of people who were studying and learning the same thing. And if it wasn’t for those people, I would’ve never gotten to do the TEDx talk. And the TEDx talk spawned really spawned my podcast and spawned my business and, and really led to so many other things.

So, um, you have those people are out there. [00:14:00] There’s a. Quote, who was it? Jim Rohn I think said, you are the average of the five people. You most, yes. You spend the most time around. And, and for me, so you know, we talked, you know, we both have four kids. So in my home there’s three females and two males. Right?

Three females and two males. And so for the average of those are, those are the five people I spend the most time with. So the average for me would be like a teenage girl. So I’d be like a teenage girl if the average minimum wage exactly right. You have to like, so how, what are the other ways you can bring people into your world?

Like, so the environment of excellence, it’s actually, there’s actually four pieces to it now. I’ll break it down real quick. So, and a way to remember it is through the acronym. Maps. M A P S M stands for media. You can bring these people into your world, into your universe through listening to podcasts like this one through books, through, you know, uh, social media, who you do follow, and also who you don’t.

[00:15:00] Follow. Right. What’s the media that I need in my life and what’s the media I need to block outta my life? So when I was wrestling, you know, I shoot, I, I, uh, I, I didn’t watch watch tv, but when I did, I was watching film of the national championships or the world championships, or breaking down film of myself or my opponents.

I used to have a mindset audio that I listened to with a Walkman. You remember Walkman? Oh yeah. Walkman back in the day, you know, it was like a cassette tape. But I would listen, I would listen to that before I went to bed. Like this is the media. That it brought into my life, right? And it, it moved me towards the goals that I wanted to achieve.

So that M is for media. A stands for area, and this is just physical.

Brett Gilliland: These are the four. These are the four. What again? Sorry.

Jim Harshaw Jr: These are the four parts of the Environment of excellence. Environment of excellence. There you go. Yep. Yep. And, and so m a p s maps and, and just like you need a map to get from where you’re at, to where you wanna go.

You gotta have, you know, a map to get from where you’re at, to where you wanna go in, in your real, in the real world, in your life too. So A stands, so M stands for media. A stands for area like the. [00:16:00] Physical space around you. And you know, for me, when I was competing, you know, I had my goals posted on my wall and I had a big poster of an Olympic gold medalist on my wall.

And I, I had a training journal in log in top right hand drawer of my desk. You know, I had healthy food, healthy snacks around me. Like I had this optimized environment, this optimized space around me. And, and it’s the same in the real world. Like I’m, I’m talking to you right now from my standing desk, you know, I’ve gotta have food next to me.

I’ve got my goals posted right here in front of me, like, You have to have this, this space around you that is optimized for success. Um, so that’s a, for area P stands for people already talked about people, that’s your coaches and your teammates, the people around you. And I know I’ve heard you talk about on your podcast before, Brett, like, and you know, being willing to invest in a coach.

Like are people, are you actually willing to do that? And again, to use your example, Tom Brady, you know, Tom Brady has. Had coaches, right? He had strength coaches, right. Pretty sure he knew how to lift weights. You know, he had a nutrition coach. Pretty sure Tom Brady knew what to eat, but [00:17:00] he still had those people in his lifes pouring into him.

That’s right. So that’s P for people. And then S is for speech. And that’s the language that we use. Really, this is a big part of the internal, internal environment of excellence. Like what’s the, what are the words I’m saying to myself? What are the, the words I’m saying out loud to others? Like, yeah, I can’t do it.

Whoa, boy, what? Boy, this economy is really terrible. Boy, finding a job these days, or, uh, gosh, my boss, he’s really sucks. Like. Really? Are you gonna say that or are you gonna say, you know, there’s a lot of opportunity out there, boy, you know, down economy, a lot of people are, are, are looking this way. I’m gonna look that way.

Like, where are the, the opportunities to change your language? Because everybody talks about attitude, have a great attitude. Well, what does that mean? Well, it starts with language and that’s, that’s the speech part. So those are the four areas, four parts of the environment of excellence. Yep.

Brett Gilliland: And it’s, uh, funny you talked about your goals being around you.

And I remember back, I’m 45 now, but when I was 23, I remember having my goals lily framed. In a, like a nice frame right next to my phone, cuz you know, back then man, I was [00:18:00] banging out 40, 50, a hundred phone calls a day just trying to find clients. Right. And so, yeah, I knew that when the times were tough I’m like, yeah, like I really wanna make this 58th phone call a day, or get told no for the 17 time.

Right? It’s like, but those things in that frame were so important to me. Those are the things that kept me going. Right. And I think clarity around that is huge for us and and for me. Yeah. I’ve got my journal here that you can get on Amazon. Shameless plugged there, the future grade in your past journal.

Um, but I have you write down every single day what your 90 day goals are every day. Right. So if I were to ask you, if you write down your goals every day for the next 90 days, is there a greater likelihood of you hitting those? Yes or no? Pretty

Jim Harshaw Jr: hundred percent. There’s a greater chance of getting there.

It’s just, it’s this small mindset shift. This is like this. I I, I love that Brett, by the way. I’m gonna check, I gotta check that out. That, that journal. I love that. Love that. You know, and you listen, I’m preaching to the choir with you, so, Writing those goals down has such an impact on, on your mindset and [00:19:00] sort of how you operate in the world.

I’m gonna share a story with you. So there’s a guy by the name of Kyle Dke. Kyle Dake is, uh, he was a, a a a high school wrestler going to college to to Cornell University. He was a good high school wrestler. But not like he was not going to sort of win the national championship his freshman year or anything ridiculous like that.

No, but so his mom and dad drop him off at Cornell University, drop him off at school, and they, and his mom hands him a journal and says, Kyle, write down your goal on this journal. Go, you know, write your goals down in there. He said, okay. So he, he wrote down his goal, mom and dad dropped him off, and then he wrote down his goal.

He said, Kyle Dke, 2009, 141 pound NCAA champion. He wrote that down that, that, that night, and then the next morning he woke up and he did it again. The next night. That night he did it again. Same thing every morning and every night. Every single morning, every single night national champion, and he won the national championship his freshman year, which is crazy.

That doesn’t happen very often, right in the sport of wrestling. [00:20:00] Next year he bumps up weight class. And he writes down his goal now, twice in the morning, twice at night. Hmm. Every day. Goes on to win the national championship again. Third year, bumps up another weight class three writes his goals down three times in the morning.

You see this is going at night? Yep. Wins another championship fourth year, four times in the morning, four times at night. He becomes the first person in the history of college wrestling to win four national championships. Each won in a different weight class. It mind blowing. I mean, freaking incredible.

Here’s the thing, like who, like, who does it? It’s kind of, it’s ridiculous. Like who writes their goals down every morning? Every, I mean, that’s absurd. It’s a little bit crazy. Well, right. Is it because this is what world class performers do, right?

Brett Gilliland: Yeah. I can’t agree more. What was, I gotta look at this guy.

What’s his, what’s his name again? Kyle

Jim Harshaw Jr: Dke. He’s now a world champion also,

Brett Gilliland: by the way, how you spell Kyle? D a k e. Just like it would sound okay. That’s amazing. Good for that guy. [00:21:00] Uh, I thought that’s where you’re gonna go. I’m like, no way. The dude bumps up one a year and does that. So every single year, what, um, what would I find for you?

I’m, I’m always, uh, you know, I’m inspired by people that have normal habits and rituals that they keep every day. Um, but what are the ones? If I followed you around with the camera, I would see are no miss items for you every day. But also if we can be transparent and vulnerable, which I know you can be.

What, what’s the hardest one? Even though you still do it, what’s the hardest one for you to do

Jim Harshaw Jr: daily? Yeah, so for me, I always, I always talk to my clients about core habits and it’s sleep, nutrition, and exercise. So if you just start with those, if you get those things right. A lot of other things are gonna be easier for you, right?

The consistency, whether it’s making the sales calls or, you know, being patient and present when you’re home with the family and kids, or being productive at work, whatever it is. Like, if you can, if you can get [00:22:00] close or, or, or nail those core habits every day, then you’re gonna have a 50% head start on just about everybody else.

Yeah. So for me it’s those right, you know, Especially the exercise and the nutrition. So for me, you know, I mentioned this three group, whether it’s that or, or going or running. I do a lot. I work out a lot. And, and so for me, like I. It brings a lot of confidence. I feel better physically and mentally, psychologically, I just feel so much better when, when I work out.

So that’s, that’s a big one for me. And then the other one is, is on the nutrition side, is, you know, I just, just before a call, I finished a big salad. Like I, I don’t eat junk food. Especially during the workday, you know, I, and I slept and I don’t always eat perfect. I’m not like, so I’m not trying to be some, some, some guru who’s sitting on top of a mountain saying I’m perfect, but I do eat right and, and I put the right fuel in my body cuz it makes me feel good.

And I actually thought about like your audience, Brett, as I’m sitting here talking to you on the Circuit of Success podcast, I’m thinking I need to be ready and, [00:23:00] and on top of my game and not feeling like crap when I show up with this podcast episode. So those are the things that I mean, gosh, you know, I wake up at.

Five o’clock, a little bit before five o’clock, and it’s painful every freaking day. I’m not a mor gets it. Never was easier. Never. It doesn’t get easier, you know, and, and that is why this environment of excellence is so critical, like, My clients are, they’re in a community of other people who are doing hard things.

Yep. And when you’re around these people doing a hard thing just is kind of the norm. Like, like, like my wife thinks I’m cra I’m running a a, a trail half marathon, Spartan race this weekend. And she thinks I’m crazy and extreme. I’m like, Uhuh, I, I just, I work out, I worked out this morning with a 63 year old guy who just ran Boston in 3 28.

Um, yo. There, there’s, um, uh, another guy, I mean, this is, I’m not even anywhere close to like the, the crazy fit guy in my workout group, but it’s like there’s [00:24:00] stamps and, and again, I’m part of a mastermind in group of entrepreneurs. Like there’s some really incredible entrepreneurs in this group. I’m not the smartest guy in the room, but when I’m around those people, it, it raises my level.

So those are the hard thing. Like you wanna, if you wanna do hard things, if you wanna get yourself to do hard things, you’re like, I wanna do the hard thing, but I can’t do it. I can’t seem to get up early and, and do the extra work. I can’t seem to stay focused at work, like, can’t seem to, you know, make that 58th sales call, get around other people who are making, you know, 75 sales call sales calls a day.

All of a sudden, 58 feels like, okay, this is like table stakes. You know, I gotta dial it up here.

Brett Gilliland: I love that. Yeah, it is man. It is who you surround yourself with. And I think about, for me, it’s exercise is, you know, getting back after it. So in August of last year, I said, you know what, man, I’m tired of, of not holding myself accountable to exercise to the level I need it to be, right?

So I, I focus again on my journal on 90 day goals. And so one of those for this 90 days, April, may, right, those, those April, may, [00:25:00] June, those three months, Ex, right. E o p exercise on purpose, right? And, and it may not mean something to somebody else, but for me there’s meaning behind that, right? I know if I went and I just kind of half-assed it or if I went and worked out right?

And so for our accountability, it was 13 guys in a group text. People listen to this every week are probably harder tired of hearing me talk about it. But I think you gotta hear something nine times before it sets in. And so, Get that accountability group of people around you. That’s what I’m hearing you say nonstop is you gotta show up at whatever, five or five 30 in the morning and have people there that are running marathons at, you know, 60 something years old.

Right. Surround yourself with better people, but also be the leader of that man. If you don’t have an organization you can go do, I think you got friends and so right when, when the wintertime came and it was cold and we didn’t wanna meet in my backyard, you had to send a picture at 6:00 AM. Right. So now guess what happens?

It works so well. You start to fade off a little bit and somebody texted me on Thursday of last week, Hey, get the text chain going again, right? So now we’re [00:26:00] back. Right now we’re back. We’re gonna get it going. So I just think when you hear me say that, like what, what do you, what comes outta that for you?

What do you hear?

Jim Harshaw Jr: I was, I’m working with a CEO of a company right now and, and we were on a call with his executive team and he said, Sometimes we get so good at something that we stop doing it. And it like really struck with why in the hell do I do that? Yeah, right. You like, and so one of my favorite coaching questions with people is what has worked, like, what has worked, what has worked for you and for the listener.

You know, whether it’s in, in your business and you’re trying to level up or you know, you know, trying to grow your business or, or get that promotion or become a leader or, you know, get healthier or fix your relationship or whatever it is. Like, simply ask yourself the question, what has. Worked. If you a, if you answer the question, what has worked?

You might say, well, this worked in my business life. Well, okay, well how can you then take that to your, your relationship at home? Right. Or if [00:27:00] this worked in my, my health and fitness, you know, being on the text thread with a bunch of people. Yeah, okay. How do I, maybe, maybe I can apply that to my bi. Who do I know that needs to make the 58 phone calls a day?

Who do I know that needs to do that? Let’s, let’s freaking create a text thread with them. Like do those things and. So these are, these are questions, right? That, that, that bring us this sort of clarity, just simply answering the question, what has worked? And I used to always ask on my podcast, I would say, um, you know, interviewed, you know, the Tim Ferris’s of the world and Jack Canfield and Ken Blanchard’s, and on and on, Shannon Miller, Olympic Gold medalist, et cetera.

And I would always say, what’s the one habit you most credit for your success? And you would assume that for the Olympic gold medalist it was some kind of training habit, or you would think that the New York Times bestseller would say it was some kind of, some kind of writing habit, but it was never what you would expect.

It was always some version of working with a coach, working with a [00:28:00] mentor, journaling, uh, doing some kind of retreat or stepping back in their life and evaluating and. And so I’ve, I’ve claimed a term for this. I call it the productive pause. The productive pause. And a productive pause is, is this. So here’s the definition of it.

A productive pause is a short period of focus, reflection around specific questions that leads to clarity of action and peace of mind. Clarity of action and peace of mind. Like that’s what we all want, and it, it doesn’t come from doing the same thing today for no better reason than that’s what we did yesterday and doing the same thing tomorrow for no better reason than that’s what we did today.

No, you can’t do that. You have to hit the productive pause. You have to hit the pause button and do this productive pause. You ask yourself questions, what has worked? Or you buy a journal. Yours, Brett, and, and, and it forces you to do that productive pause every day. When you open the journal, you write down your goals, and I’m sure there’s some questions in there that are bringing people clarity of action, peace of mind, [00:29:00] setting them on the right course for the day.

Yeah. So for the listener, you have to carve this time out. You know, like when I think back to my wrestling life, you know, if you asked me what was the most, one important one hour. That I spent the entire wrestling season. It wasn’t in the weight room, it wasn’t in the training room or wrestling room, practice room.

It wasn’t watching film. It was the one hour that I spent with my coaches at the beginning of the season where we mapped out the season, we set my goals, we identified different things and, and you know, strengths and weaknesses like that one hour set the course for the whole year. So that is a productive pause.

Brett Gilliland: Yeah, I love that. And it’s funny you say that about the Olympic athletes. I had one on Annie Koons and she said she was the heptathlete and you know, which is probably the most in shape, you know, Olympic there is to do all of those things. And so she said, you know, I’m like, pen and paper, right? I’m ready to rock.

She’s gonna gimme the secret sauce. She’s like, uh, mindfulness, like meditation, you know, five to 10 minutes a day. And [00:30:00] I practice gratitude. Three things I’m thankful for. I’m like, you know, that’s it. Come on. Like, it’s

Jim Harshaw Jr: so true. The shake, like, what’s the magic ingredient that I’m supposed to put in my smoothie?

Right. Or, you know, what’s the pill that I gotta take? It’s like, no, it’s like mindfulness, gratitude. Like what? Like that’s the secret. Yes, that’s the secret. But here’s the deal. Like, are you doing it right? You know, like the, the secret is like writing down your goals every morning and every night. Like Kyle Dick, like, do you have these habits?

You can listen to a podcast like yours. But unless you’re actually taking action and doing the work, I mean that, that’s, none of this stuff works as you know, Brett, none of this works unless you actually do it.

Brett Gilliland: Yep, a hundred percent. So let’s talk about the, um, I always joked that I’ve got a, a man or woman who, my mine’s a man.

I’m a guy that, that sets in my shoulder. The woman listening could have that woman on her shoulder that, that says, one thing, you can do this, man. Go get it, Brett. You got it. Take the world over, you know? And then you got the person over here that sometimes can be just a little bit taller, right? And [00:31:00] they’re saying, man, who the hell do you think you are?

Right? Like, why do you think you can do that? How do you personally, I. Help yourself through those moments of that self-defeating thinking.

Jim Harshaw Jr: Yeah. First of all, thank you for assuming that I have it and that everybody has it, because we all do. And you know, so it’s so easy to, to look at other people and think, oh, it’s just easier for them and Right.

Success just comes easy. They don’t have the self-doubt. It’s like no BS man. It’s like everybody, everybody has that. And you know, I, I, like I said, I grew up in a small town. I was a small kid. I was a small thinker, and success was for other people. And so I really had to wrestle with that for a long time.

Not, you know, no pun intended. No pun intended, but yeah. And. I, you know, I, I went through my, I went through my wrestling career being afraid of failing. Mm. [00:32:00] And I, I got to the point where at the end of my junior year, I, you know, I’ve been wrestling for 16 years. I’ve been competing for 16 years and I’m now a junior in college.

And, and you know, my, my goal is to be an All-American, right? I get to college and, and I actually red shirted my first year. And, uh, so for those who aren’t familiar with college sports, you get five years to do four years of competition. You can take one red shirt year where you still train with the team and that sort of thing.

And I trained with the team my freshman year and kind of matured and grew, got a little stronger and. By the time I actually rolled around to my, my red shirt freshman year, my, my second year in college. But my, my really, my freshman year of, of competition, I made the starting lineup and I set my goal to be an All-American.

And the first thing you have to do is get to the national championships. I qualified for the national championships as a freshman in college and I was like, holy, I got there, but I failed. Failed to become an All American. You have to win four matches sophomore year. Again, I got to the national championships again.

I failed [00:33:00] junior year. I. Pretty much a repeat of the prior two years. I get to the national championships and I fall short of my goal and I failed, and I go to the locker room and I remember just burning my face in a towel in tears, thinking, what’s wrong with me? Like, am I not good enough? Am I not smart enough?

Am I not capable enough? Like maybe it’s just not in the cards for me. Like what? Maybe I shouldn’t set my goal so high and, and I. I decided to dedicate my off season to figuring out what I was missing because like, I couldn’t work harder there. Like there’s not more miles hours in the day, right? I couldn’t run more miles, I couldn’t lift more weights, couldn’t watch more film.

There’s not more I could do. And so I set my, my entire off season. My goal is to, to get with as many world-class performance as possible and figure out like, what am I missing? Like, do I need to. Better techniques in the top position. Do I need to lift, you know, get my legs stronger? Do I gotta get better?

Like what is the, what do I need to do? And so I got, you know, I got to, I worked wrestling camps as a camp counselor [00:34:00] at all these wrestling camps and they would bring in, you know, Olympic gold medalists and national championship coaches and I would pick their brains. And the whole off season goes by heading into the senior, my senior year.

It’s the night before the first competition. And we’re sitting, I’m sitting in a hotel. In Morgantown, West Virginia the night before the West Virginia University opened, and, and it hits me. I never figured it out. Like I never figured out what it is that I was missing. And I’m thinking to myself, well, all I can do is all I can do, I, I gave up on the outcome.

I gave up on becoming an All-American and I said, all I’m gonna do is all I can do. I can’t, like I said, run more miles, lift more weights, watch more film. I can’t do more. So everything I have, I’m gonna put into this. And at the end of the season, if I get onto the podium, great. If I don’t, I have to be okay with that.

And putting down that baggage, that fear of failure, that doubt, that little voice [00:35:00] on, on the side of that, that that voice on the side, on my shoulder. Shoulder, it became irrelevant. I was able to put down that fear, put down that doubt, and just go be free and actually compete to the best of my abilities.

And I went, woke up, and the next day I went out and I dominated the competition. I went five and oh, won the championship and I had more fun than I’d ever had wrestling in my career, my entire career. And I went through the entire season the same way and I lost matches. But I had a great season. Got onto the podium at the national championship.

I got to matter of fact, at the national championships, I, I win, I won three matches. Now I gotta win one more match to become an All-American, and I gotta wrestle the fourth ranked guy in the country. He’s on the number one ranked team in the country, university of Minnesota. There’s 15,000 people in the arena.

And my life essentially to this point, comes down to this, it, the seven minutes, the seven minute match. And you know, you wanna think to yourself like, oh, hey, this, this is the oneand, this, I’ve gotta, I’ve gotta perform my best. I gotta give everything, I gotta give 110%. It’s like, no, you [00:36:00] don’t. You don’t. You just gotta show up and give everything you’ve got, and if that’s enough, great.

If it’s not enough, that’s irrelevant. What’s really relevant is that you put everything you’ve got into it, and you don’t leave anything on the mat. Like you just leave it all out there. And that’s what I did. I doubted him. I I won the match and, and I became an All-American. And in so many times we listened to that voice of doubt that’s on our shoulders, that voice that’s saying, I told you so.

You can’t do this. You’re not good enough, you’re not smart enough, you’re not capable enough. I, but we have to follow. We have to follow Steven Covey’s advice, seven Habits of Highly Effective People. Start with the end in mind. Okay? I’m not saying you can’t, shouldn’t have goals. This is critical to, to success is having the goal, creating the vision.

This is what the vision of success looks like. Now I’m gonna work backwards. I’m gonna create the process. I’m gonna create the environment of excellence. I’m gonna get around the right people. All this. And I’m gonna let go of the outcome and just fully be, [00:37:00] just be in the moment, be present. Give it everything you’ve got in that sales presentation, in that job interview, in that Spartan race, whatever it might be, just.

Be show up and do everything you can because that’s all you can do. And that’s how I deal then and still deal with that little voice that’s on my shoulder. Yeah, that voice of doubt. So

Brett Gilliland: let’s talk about that. So I, I gave a talk last week at a university and, um, these students, and it was a, um, you know, a great group of young, you know, seem to be professionals and all this stuff.

And, but we talked about, and, and I. I said some things that I look back now and I’m thinking, you know what? That’s, that’s right. Today where I’m at at 45, but it wasn’t what I was doing when I was their age. So when I was a young professional, I would say I was pretty good at thinking big. Believing big and doing things at a younger age that I probably shouldn’t have been doing.

[00:38:00] Meaning that I, I just, I was just dumb enough to not think, well, I, of course I can go do this. I know I’m 26 years old. I can go be a managing director and be successful and Yeah, and do this, and so, But then when, as I’ve gotten older, I look at, I wanna set realistic goals. Like if I’m struggling with exercise, I don’t wanna say, all right, you know, tomorrow I’m gonna start and we’re gonna work out seven days a week, and it’s just gonna continue to happen.

It’s like, no, let’s start with the Tuesday and Thursday with the accountability group text message, right? Let’s just go twice. And so it was a good awareness for me this weekend to think, gosh, which one is it? Is it think big, believe big, dream big, set these big, you know, hairy, audacious goals as people call ’em?

Or is it good to be realistic? And I think, man, it really depends on where you’re at in life. Right. So when you hear me say that, what are your thoughts between the twenties year olds, right? Yeah. The Brett’s and, and, and, and you and I going out there as, as 25 year olds versus say, 45 year olds. Where’s Brett and Jim at, on that level?

Jim Harshaw Jr: Yeah. Yeah. It’s this weird dichotomy of, [00:39:00] of both and, you know, Jocko Willink wrote a great book. The, the Dichotomy of Leadership and, and looking at kind of both sides of leadership. And it’s, it’s the same in this, in in goals. It’s, it’s, Like I said, start with the end in mind, but also give up on the outcome.

You know? Yeah. Those seem to be opposites, but they’re not. They have, you have to have them both. Right, and, and you know, you have to have, you know, the big hairy, audacious, audacious goal. I shouldn’t say you have to, by the way. I’ll come back and, and reframe that in a second. But if you have that big, hairy, audacious goal, it also starts with one step.

It also starts with. Habits, right? Whether it’s the, the mindset habits or, or the, the, the, how many times you pick up the phone and dial every day or whatever those habits are that are gonna get you from where you’re at to where you want to go. Um, but everybody, and, and we, we approach this in my coaching program cuz we coach the whole person, um, from wealth and career to relationships and health.

Like, some people just have it dialed in, in some areas, [00:40:00] right? They don’t need any help in their marriage and their health. They’re like, I just need business advice, career advice. Find, like, I just want to dial it up there. Right? I’m, I wanna go from good to great in that area. Great. We help you. If, if maybe it’s, maybe it’s your health, maybe it’s like, man, I just, you know, I’m crushing it.

I’m, I’m, you know, making seven figures plus, and, and you know, my marriage is great, but man, I just can’t seem to get consistent in my workouts. It’s like, okay, let’s, let’s, let’s dial it up there. You don’t need the B H A G in, in the other areas, or like, you, you have to figure out like, what does the B H A G look like for you?

And, and I’m actually, my, my retreat, my client retreat this coming weekend is, is called, uh, the limitless life. Like what does that look like for you? It’s, you know, every, actually today everybody’s work, pre-work. They’re, they’re the work they have to do before the, the, the actual event. It’s due today. And I can’t wait to read them because it’s gonna be different for everybody.

Every, it’s gonna be different. I have people who are, you know, published authors and, you know, uh, uh, you know, [00:41:00] multi-millionaires and they’re, they’re, you know, neurosurgeons and professional athletes and, and people on, you know, the other end of the spectrum. And it’s just, It’s different. I shouldn’t even say that end of the spectrum.

It’s just they’re at a different place in, in their lives, right? Where their families are, where their, their health is, where their wealth is. Um, so you like, I, you know, you wanna give a prescription, but it’s really different for everybody. But it goes back to, if you can go back to what’s the vision for my life?

What are my values? Yeah. What are the goals that align with those values? Then you can map that out. So what’s,

Brett Gilliland: uh, what’s something that’s disrupting right now in the world and you hear a lot about like, chat beat G P T and you think about, you know, artificial intelligence and we’re sending people up into outer space and rockets coming back.

Like what is it for you kind of turning the page a little bit of this stuff and just kinda free flowing some things? What is it Yeah. Of those that you think will actually disrupt the most for the everyday man or woman? [00:42:00]

Jim Harshaw Jr: Have you messed with AI? Might, or at least chat gpt, have you messed with with that much?

Yeah, I

Brett Gilliland: have. I’ve, I’ve messed with it a fair amount and uh, yeah, but you know, it just doesn’t seem authentic and real to me. Like, you know, I could have it go out and write a 500 page article, you know, on, you know, social security and taxes and all this stuff, and I’m sure it’d do a great job, but just. For me, it doesn’t seem, in, in my world, the world I live in with clients and, and people and their lives.

It doesn’t seem authentically real.

Jim Harshaw Jr: Yeah, yeah. No, absolutely. I, I totally agree. Um, it is, it know it’s gonna be a game changer. I mean, I think in ways that we can’t even predict. Yeah. Just like the internet, you know, we couldn’t, we couldn’t, you couldn’t have predicted back in the, I dunno, in the nineties, the, the impact that the internet would have on us today, but, um, But art, I think artificial intelligence is, is the game changer.

I’m actually working on a, uh, I can’t, I can’t really share it right now. It’s not open. But a a an AI version, um, [00:43:00] of, of something that’s gonna be, it’s gonna be a game changer. Um, but, uh, um, it’s


Brett Gilliland: you say the, the intelligence. I was listening to a podcast the other day and they said, you know, think about when the internet came out.

You could type in anything and get information. Right. There’s artificial information and there’s artificial intelligence. Yeah. And it’s like now we’re gonna take that all the information in the world and then be able, everybody’s gonna be smarter, right? If you know how to use it and you know what you’re looking for and all that, and you adapt it into your world, This person was talking about how the world is going to be much more intelligent.

Uh, which I hope so. Um, yeah, I think that’ll be pretty crazy if, if, if you use the right way.

Jim Harshaw Jr: Yeah. If you use the right way. And, you know, I use it a ton for not so much content creation. I do a little bit for content creation. It’ll, my assistant will use it to help. Do a first draft of, say, a podcast description, you know?

Yeah. So we’ll use that to kinda get us 50% or 75% of the way there, and then we go put our, our touch [00:44:00] on it. Um, I’ll use it to do research on, on guests for podcasts to help me sort of formulate, uh, conversation topics. Again, you know, we, we will, we’ll create a ton of it and then we’ll sift through it and, and pick out what we, like, combine things, delete a lot of things, uh, and put our own touch and, and, and spin on it.

But, um, you know, even. Creating images, you know, you can, you can have a, create a, an any image that you want, which is scary in the sense that, you know, people are creating images that, of things, of events that never happened and, and saying they’ve happened.

Brett Gilliland: So there’s, so tell me more about that. How do you create, what kind of image are you creating?

Jim Harshaw Jr: So you could create, um, um, Well, here’s an example. I, I, I, I have a t-shirt I created from for the Success Through Failure podcast. And so went into chat, G P T said, here’s, you know, here’s what my brand is, here’s what my podcast is. Um, I. Or creating a t-shirt. Uh, give me five different descriptions of a t-shirt and it can describe, and you say, okay, uh, pick which one you like and you kind of like talk back [00:45:00] and forth to it.

You know, refine number three and delete number four, and add to number five, whatever. And then, you know, you pick which one you like, and then you take that over to something called Mid Journey. And Mid journey is just another ai. And you could say, okay, uh, create me a graphic, uh, with this description that you’re copied and copied and paste it from chat gpt.

Chat. G p t is like, is is like, um, you know, the, the sort of very basic, sort of entry level, sort of like, that’s just the thing that most people know and talk about, but there’s all these other tools out there that are, that you, you, that you can use and conjunction with chat, gp, pt or are totally separately that take that and just amplify.

I, I’m, I’m like, I’m such a beginner at this, but like, uh, you know, I’ve gotten into this, this, this with this individual who’s creating a pretty amazing company around this. Um, yeah, again, it’s, it’s, I’m in this mastermind group. I mentioned this mastermind group that I’m part of this, these entrepreneurs, and oh my goodness, the, the, what they’re doing [00:46:00] with AI is just mind blowing.

Um, stuff that I don’t even know, I didn’t even realize was possible. So, yeah,

Brett Gilliland: it is crazy, man. It’s gonna be a, uh, it definitely is gonna be a game changer. There’s no doubt about that. Yes. It’s just, uh, hopefully it’s in the right hands and gonna be used for what it’s hopefully meant to be used for. Right.

That’s, that’s the other scary part. So, so Jim, where can our listeners find more of you?

Jim Harshaw Jr: So if you Google my name Jim Haw Jr. Jim Haw on any social media platform, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, you’ll find me. Um, and I love to connect with people. So, you know, and you can find my podcast Success through Failure.

Uh, just published episode 400, not not long ago. So for, for quite a while. Um, again, you know, Navy Seals and Olympic Gold medalists, you know, a lot of similar guests as yours and, and we always pull back the curtain and say, tell me about a time when you failed. Certainly we’re getting there. Habits and tactics for success, but also like, tell me about a time when you failed.

Tell me about a time when, when you know things weren’t so rosy for you. When there’s some dark times and, and it’s amazing when you pull back the curtain. [00:47:00] Failure is actually not something that they’re immune to or that they don’t actually have to go through it. It’s something that. They go through maybe more so than, than the average person.

Yeah. Because they continue to get up one more time every time to get to the other side or whatever their goal is. So that’s really, um, the, the crux of the Success Through Failure podcast is, you know, it’s the only show that reveals the true nature of success. So it’s on any pod podcast platform. You can check it out there, uh, or you can go to jim harsha

And, uh, and you can, you know, jump on a free one-on-one coaching call with me and I can talk about how to implement this framework that I talked about earlier into your life.

Brett Gilliland: I love it, man. We’ll put all this in the show notes below and uh, also on our YouTube page. So check that out. And, uh, Jim, man, it’s been awesome having you and thanks so much for sharing your wisdom on the circuit of

Jim Harshaw Jr: success.

Likewise, Brett. Great meeting you. Thanks for having me on.[00:48:00]