David is a former consulting actuary to Fortune 100 companies. He built the world’s largest coaching business, becoming #1 on Google for life coaching and coaching thousands of hours in 12 countries around the globe.
As well as helping others, David is no stranger to overcoming challenges himself, having survived a full collapse of his paraglider and a fractured spine, witnessing the death of his sister at age seven, anxiety and depression, and a national Gong Show! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YgKwAJieQes)
He coaches high performing business owners to double revenue, and their time off by focusing on less and being 30% more courageous in their business or career.
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Josh: What's up everybody, Josh Tapp here again, and welcome back to the lucky Titan and today, I want to start this one off a little bit different because this is a guest I've been really looking forward to and I want to preface this before I intro him with a question I want all of you to ask yourselves, and this is, do you think it's possible to double your revenue and your happiness at the same time and if you do think it's possible, how do you think that you can get there and I want you to think about the first answer that comes to mind to that question as we dive into this interview today, so our guest today is David Wood, the one the only, I mean, this guy has coached some of the Fortune 100 companies, he built the world's largest coaching company, I mean, this guy has such an amazing track record of helping people, double their revenues, but also double their happiness and become highly successful people and I've been so excited to delve into his content and see some of the other things that he has a talk with him today, because this is going to be an interview that I think for a lot of you is going to help you break through that barrier of saying, how do I how do I actually scale quickly and fight that fear of feeling like you're not going to be able to so David say what's up to everybody, first off, and then we'll hop in.
David: What's up, everybody, thanks for having me on the show and I want to clarify something Josh, I don't know if I'd say I've coached some of the Fortune 100 companies. I just like to be accurate with language, I think I've definitely consulted to fortune 100 companies, and I have coach, vice presidents at some of the really big ones but coaching a company I've imagined that's like working with the CEO and the leadership team and like that so I've consulted to the big companies, and I've coached some leaders at their companies, I don't know that I'd say I've coached fortune 100 companies, but I'd like to one day.
Josh: Yeah, I sure you will. And I love that delineation, actually, I've never really thought of it that way, I have to change my verbiage on that with a couple interviews, because that's cool. Because I mean, you're not coaching the company, or you're working on a more intimate level and you consulted to some of these, these amazing, massive companies and most people that's their dream is to be able to work with these, right?
David: Yeah, well, and I didn't start out with that as a goal. I just, you know, I left left college and I had a scholarship to go to college and then I got a job and work for a big consulting firm, and I had these clients and it's later as I got into coaching, and I look back and write your resume and you kind of like write history in a way you're like, well, what is my story? What do I have? And it took me a while to realize, wait a minute. I've I've worked with some of the biggest companies in the business in my former life so it kind of surprises me, it wasn't the plan but it's like looking back. Oh, yeah. Don't forget that he should have mentioned that when you do podcast, David, you should tell people I've worked with with with some big names so it's fun to remember that.
Josh: When I think a lot of people it's such a good point, I think a lot of people look at their past experience and if it's not directly in line with what they're doing right now, they feel like it doesn't count and I disagree with that.
David: well, you've hit a hot button today this is timely because the I told you before we started recording, I just decided to get into acting and seven weeks ago, I started telling people, because I've been thinking about it for years and I finally started saying I think may one I'm going to move to LA and just really dive into acting and then one thing led to another and now I find myself in a in a play, I'm in a production and the director just said send me your BIO’s today and I had a freeze moment, I'm like you know, the last play I did was when I was five years old so what am I gonna do and I asked someone in the cast to send me their bio so she did oh come on, graduated from, you know, with a BA in theater and art and then credits include and she lists like 15 different productions and roles she's had, my credits include a play when I was five years old, that's that's my credit. So yeah, it's it's sometimes challenging, but I've got a lot of experience in helping my my clients present themselves and looking for what's going to look good, what's going to sound good and when you go back through your past and dig it up, you can find things you can like once had a friend who was a lecturer at Columbia University, and she said you want to come along and talk to my class and be a guest, you know, a guest expert so now I can I'm like, wait a minute, that makes me a guest lecturer at Columbia University, okay, great. Well, we'll add that and then you get a little TV spot somewhere or you got on a radio show and say, Oh, well, that looks good, we'll go and add that so for the acting today I just wrote it just just before I got on this call and I looked for what is relevant and so I said, David brings years of experience in stand-up comedy, which I've done professional entertaining as a singer and guitarist, motivational speaking, in improvisation so, you know, I just looked for the related stuff and then, and then said, he's thrilled to make his acting debut here with Arts in the open so yeah, listeners, you know, you've, you've got life experience, you've overcome challenges, boom, that can go on your bio, and you you've probably read my bio, I listed some of the challenges I've overcome and then you list some of your successes, what, wait, I did that and all I did that and that's relevant, and you start to build it, with with too hard on ourselves, and I think we do sell ourselves short, I've got a T shirt, my friend, Chris Doris, from mental toughness sent me that said, if your memory was better, you'd realize how amazing you are.
Josh: Right, that's amazing. You're it's funny, as people think that, that goes away with accomplishment, right, that fear goes away with accomplishment, I've worked with people who have made billions of dollars billions with a B, and they still struggle when we try to start a podcast for them or do coaching of some sort, they're still sitting there going, who am I to teach this, if you've made a multiple billion dollar company, you're you have experience, you know, and people still struggle with it, that's incredible.
David: Yeah, yeah. I was just listening to a to an interview. I think it's an old interview now with Eddie Murphy, and Jerry Seinfeld and they asked him, if he if he still gets nervous and he said, not these days, I'm pretty sure I'm funny, I thought that was funny coming from Eddie Murphy so I think, you know, eventually, for sure, like I've been coaching for so long, I'm often not nervous in coaching sessions, but I got a session later today, I'm not really sure if I'm adding value, and I don't know how long, we might continue working together so there's a part of me that's a bit nervous that maybe it's not going to be adding value and not being good enough and here's the other thing, let's suppose you get to a point where you're so confident that, you know, it's easy for you, the next natural step will be to create something new in your life, where you're no longer confident, right, that's kind of how a lot of us are built and if I have anything to say about it, I keep nudging people into those areas so it wasn't a big stretch for me to become an actuary, and, and, and really get a job in New York, a lot of that was handed to me but since then, I quit, went back to Australia decided to be a singer and guitarist and I can't sing, talk about imposter syndrome every single time getting up on that stage, even did national television, singing and playing guitar wearing a kilt, terrified and then after a year and a half of that, and realizing I'm really not good at this and I think I've scratched that itch, and I should do something that's going to make money and before and that I'm good at, I went into coaching, huge imposter syndrome because what do I know I did get trained in a course so I had that under my belt, but I'm young and it's all new and I'll give a tip now, if you're in something new like that, one of the traps is to make believe or pretend that you are an expert, you want people to think that you're great at that and you don't want them to know that you knew that's a trap be really careful about that way easier to just say, hey, I'm a student at this, I'm getting started, I'm a babe in the woods and because of that, I'm going to give you a discount and if you get amazing results you're welcome to pay for rate same same with with being a musician, being an improviser, I would do theatrical, improv, get up on stage in front of like a 200 or 300 person audience and be terrified and I realized I was so worried people would think that I suck and it wasn't until I had a flash one day and realized compared to these guys, I do suck, I'm not that good, I have moments a moment, but I'm not as good as I want to be and I want to pretend to be and that was so fun freeing to just realize I'm a student at this, I'm learning, I'm going to go out there, and I'm going to suck so there's a mindset tip and then after the after the musical stuff, and then the coaching, I start speaking on stage, oh, so scary and if I could go back in time and do those initial speeches, I'd say, Look, I'm not an, I don't have everything worked out, I'm a student of this stuff but I've discovered a few things that I'd like to share with you, I think they're going to make a difference. Now that's integrity, that's authenticity and that connection and then, as we just started talking about with the acting, I decided seven weeks ago, I want to start acting and I mentioned that a friend said, you want to come to this audition with me and I'm thinking No, like, that's one part of my brains, I know, I don't, I don't know how to act and also I don't know how to audition but then another part of my brain is, well, sounds like an opportunity, you know, you get it, you don't get it, you still got to learn with the audition, let's go and read some lines and if the director likes it will read some more so I went and did that and then they offered me the lead, which really shocked me really shocked me and thrilled me so I think one lesson from this is, even though a big part of your brain is going to doubt that's fine, you don't have to change that, I would welcome it like, yeah, I am new. I am, you know, and I'm and and maybe I'm not the right person for this gig, maybe but another part of your brain needs to say, but maybe, but maybe, maybe they just like the look of me or maybe I make a choice and the director goes, Oh, no one made that choice. That's, that's interesting, let's see how that works and then you go and do 100 of those, like, let's say, say you're starting a coaching business, because I've done that so that's something I know, you know, once you've asked 100 people to be a client, you'll be better at it, yeah and then once you've coached 100 people, you'll be better at it and it gets easier, but you Jack Canfield talks about the law of large numbers and I'm a huge believer in that, I'm happy I'm doing like 12 auditions a week and I'm happy to keep doing it because I know someone at some point is gonna go, you know, I like he's got the right look, he's got the right vibe, let's try it out, I've got an audition in an hour and we're doing a zoom call readings, reading a script, It's gonna be reasonable. It's, I don't think it's gonna be amazing, it's gonna be reasonable and they might be like, Yeah, let's do it and if they don't, I'm gonna have a good time and you know what, I forgot to have a good time so now I'm reminding myself, I'm going to have a good time meeting, meeting the director, and, and saying the lines, and then bless them with whatever their choices.
Josh: Yeah. What would you mind if I unpack that a little bit because that was, yeah, yeah. Good mindset shifts that I hope everybody, I mean, for me, I was having some epiphanies in the back in my mind, while we're talking here, too. It's so interesting. He talked about being a student, right and, and share your findings, I think that's such a cool thing, because nobody's gonna ridicule you for sharing your findings, right? You're saying, Hey, I'm gonna say like, with a beta launch, for example, your beta launch and your coaching, you say, Hey, I have some experience in this, you know, I've done it for myself, or I've done it for somebody else, maybe a company I worked for, but I'm still a student of it so well, you come with me, I'll give you the cheaper price to let me just try it and you know, you're obviously going to get the result if you don't, you, I'll give you your money back and if you do you give me a testimonial, right? There's no risk, there's no risk with it, a great strategy.
Josh: So I want to ask you this, because, you know, when, when your team sent me in kind of your bio, and everything about you, you talked about making a 30% shift in courage and I want to ask you what you actually mean by that, but then on top of that, how to apply that because you're obviously doing that with your acting and everything as well but what what, what would you recommend for people as far as taking that 30% step?
David: Yeah. I love this question alright so let's unpack this, the way our system seems to work the human brain is largely we'll stick to our comfort zone, largely and I think that's, that's an evolutionary trait, if you keep on you know, testing out the edges of the boundaries at some point you might fall off a cliff so it makes a lot of sense, but if we keep on just sticking to the comfort zone, the risk is on our deathbed, we look back and say I played it too safe, I wish I had loved more, I wish I had asked for more, I wish I had shared the stuff that wasn't working for me and asked it to stop, I wish I had told people how I felt, I wish I'd gone for it, I wish I had gone up on that stage or reached out to that celebrity or asked that woman or man out or I hate regret, I really do so what we want to do is go into those uncomfortable areas where we don't know what's going to happen, we don't know if we'll get we'll get what we want and we might get rejected, we might fall flat on our face, now, not every day, not all day and that's why I don't say 100% more courageous, say 30% more, I find when I do push the edges. Usually, I'm, I'm proud of myself and happy that I did that's the first win so if you're looking for a reason to be more courageous, that's the first win, feel good about yourself, I went for it when I went and did that audition, I was so proud of myself that I did it and so so that's one. The next thing is like how do we how do we do it? How do we be more courageous? Like, let's suppose well, the first step is we create, we create what we want we we create a vision and this is one thing humans can do that I don't think animals can do other animals, they can't say, what would life look like, in 12 months and what would make me really happy, we can do that, let's not waste that ability so his first exercise for listeners, if you want an exercise, get a piece of paper, write 123 at the top those your three business goals in 12 months, and then 1234 personal and then just spend five or 10 minutes saying what if, what if I can have whatever I want and you know, if you really want to go for a walk with a coach, getting getting a mastermind getting a men's group or a women's group or something and get support to generate that creative flow that you know you can tap into and then like someone asked me once my guy in my men's group, David, what would have you celebrate your ass off, like it might literally fall off, you're You're so happy and dancing around and I spent 30 days sitting with that question, I'm like, I know some stuff I want but what would I be so happy that I want to call on my friends, well, I'll tell you what, getting off at Dracula in this play had me calling everybody right, but I didn't know that. I just knew I wanted to hit in the direction of acting so the first thing is create the vision and be careful about the part of you that's trying to play small and hold back, a good another good question to ask yourself is if I was fearless, iPhones fearless, and not worried about the consequences, what would I go for, what would I want in my life, took me 10 years to tell people I want to be an actor, I just kept it to myself and I guess you know, now the timings right the next thing once you've got that, you might be like, Huh, oh, that's scary, I don't know how to create that business, I don't know how to access that celebrity, I don't know how to get 100 people, as clients so it does start scary and that's why support can be useful even for high performance because high performers still have limitations still have like, well, I can perform with this, then this range, and I can do this, but it's when someone else says what about this, what if you double that goal, like whoa, what? So firstly, we create secondly, how do we get there, well, when I decided I wanted to get into acting initially it was just going to be I'll wait a year and then I'll move to LA and then I'll start that was the plan was pretty easy but then as I started speaking, it things started happening and you can break down goals into manageable steps, here's a really good question, let's suppose you got a huge hairy goal, what's one action you'd be willing to take in that direction, so for example, I wanted to reach out to Alan Alda for years I've just he's an idol of mine. I'd love to meet him and it's always felt a little out of integrity for me that I hadn't done anything about it. I even asked Steve Sims on the interview, how would I approach Alan Alda and Steve said, well, so there's a step right, there's a step I asked an expert, how would you get in touch with a celebrity and he said find out what he cares about so took me another 6 to 12 months by One day I said, Let's take one action, what's one action in that direction that I would do? I could listen to an interview with Alan Alda and find out something he cares about. Okay, I could do that as I did that and did my research, I discovered he's passionate about communication and saw my I'm writing a book on communication, gone into prisons, teaching communication so I found a way to get on a zoom call with him with my research and in in that I told him, you seem to be doing a lot of work in communication, I'm teaching communication in prisons, any chance I could get you on the podcast, like, what would that what would that take to get you on the podcast and, and he said, Well, reach out to my producer, and we'll see what we can do but it was like being take baby steps and I've had clients all the time, say, I don't know what the first step is, now often, when we brainstorm, we'll come up with a bunch but I say, well, if you don't know what the first step is, then then then what do you need to do, usually, it's a research step so with acting, I went and I realized, I don't even know the landscape, I don't know the lingo, I don't know what my goals should be, is just a big blur so I went and found a call a friend, and said, hey, you moved to LA 15 years ago to pursue acting, do you have any advice, he said, You should connect with this training company, went and looked up the training company, they've got a zoom call every two weeks, where they talk about a career in acting, okay, great so I went and subscribed to that found a podcast started listening to two actors talking about how to make it, got a book, read a book, found an acting class, audited the acting class so and every step you take up the ladder gives you a different perspective so now you see more so you know, I got in there and like, Oh, now I think I want to learn the Meisner technique and I do want to do a couple of plays and do I need an agent, no, get good at the craft, okay like I'm learning the strategy just get good at your craft be good at your craft for one to five years in one location that's advice I got and I'm like, Okay, now I know what to do, I don't have to hunt for an agent so the baby steps to get yourself moving and then there's also momentum, which happens, as you see when someone said you want to come to this audition, that led to getting a coach learning a German accent, memorizing lines learning about Dracula, now I'm in touch with a playwright because I'm asking for permission to record it for my show reel all of these things are snowballing, now, I've got a friend in LA, who I didn't even realize had been a working actor for 30 years is going to fly to Colorado and watch me and this performance, which blows my mind, they see there's a momentum, and then who knows what comes out of that and then I'm like, wait a minute, wait, and I swear this is true, I forgot that I know an Oscar winning producer, who lives in LA, like, wait a minute, I know that I know that guy. Um, maybe we could hang out when I when I moved to LA but my brain didn't show me that early on, it's just as you start going up the steps, more becomes apparent and you see more, sometimes the hardest step is that creating the vision, and then getting started in that direction, once you do, sometimes the rest takes care of itself.
Josh: And I love that because I mean, really what for me, at least what makes that happen for me isn't just, you know, trying to take those steps myself, but like you mentioned, hire a coach or get a get into a mastermind of some sort where you you're paying for accountability because you know, you have to show up, you have to make it worth the time and it's so fun with somebody like you who's such an amazing coach to be able to come to you and say, help me overcome this courage barrier that helped me take those next steps that gets huge.
David: Yeah, I like that you mentioned accountability, that's, that's sometimes why people hire coaches sometimes, I mean, you know, there's lots of things that come from coaching, sometimes it's brainstorming, sometimes it's a paradigm shift sometimes it's a limiting belief that we did not there's so much, but sometimes I haven't had one client paid me, I think it was 20 $25,000 up front and she said, Look, I'm a high performer, I got my own radio show, I'm doing really well, I just know that with you, I'm going to do the stuff I need to do and without you I just tend not to do it and so 2025 grand and makes sure that I do the stuff I know I can do is is a no brainer so yeah, the accountability, I just hearing you say that I realized something that I've wanted for 10 years is to be a songwriter and I put almost no time into it, I have a blog, and I, and all all it's going to take is a structure could be a group that that meets once a week and someone saying, alright, what are the commitments we're going to do I can, I'm going to have a draft of this to my buddy, or whatever it is some kind of structure, just give us a little helping hand to get moving, in the in the direction we want to go.
Josh: Yeah. And, you know, I found this to David, I mean, and I love that you're doing that with, like you said, it's a framework, I know for me, if I don't pay, I don't do it and then I don't take advantage of it because I have people all the time, especially being a podcaster where we hit it off, and I can just give you my coaching for free and and those are the ones I never attend, I just forget about them where you know, if I'm forking out $50,000 a year on something I'm going to be okay, I should actually be showing up to this and making sure I come and do my work and
David: yeah, exactly. Yeah, I always say to clients, ideally, the coaching fee should have some sting to it like it matters. It's not just, you don't even notice it going out of the bank account, it should matter. It shouldn't break the bank either but it's almost like if you're, if you're watching a poker game, but you got no money on the table, it's not really that interesting but when you have something at stake, you got skin in the game, everything changes and so you don't you don't want to show up without having done your homework, you don't want to show up without having taken the actions that you said you would because it's it's awkward, having to say that to someone else. Yeah, I didn't do it and secondly, you're paying money for it. So it's out of integrity to pay the money and not do it so it I think it's deliberately set up to create that tension.
Josh: Yeah, having that accountability partner, I know for me, we recently I wanted to start getting back into fitness and health and I always do these ebbs and flows and I was gonna do something different this time and so one of the guys that I'm working with here, he, he wanted to do the same thing, he came to me, he's like, I'm ready to do this and his excitement, got me excited about it but we said, let's set a consequence that we both just will do anything to avoid. And if either of us messes up, we both have to do that consequence and for both of us Funny enough, that was we don't ever want to have to run either of us, like long distance running, we'll just avoid a 5k like the plague and doing that we've been more consistent than I've ever been in my life and I've been way more excited about it and those hard days have allowed us to make sure we actually get to the gym, you know, that's, that's been a big factor for us and holding ourselves accountable to it.
David: Yeah and like this conversation we're having this space we're in has got my brain creating my brain, it's got me scanning for, you know, what are some things that were some accountability, I could bring these things into my life on a regular basis so ping pong, I've been wanting to have more ping pong, I've got a table now, but I don't have anyone I live with that I can play with and so it's going to take, it's going to take something, and what I could do is just set a regular date, you know, at least one day a week, that's ping pong day, and then I reach out who's up, boom, that's handled songwriting, get myself in a songwriting course, right, I've also been thinking about working with a vocal coach, I like it, it'll help with the acting, it'll help with singing and her walk with all sorts of things, then, and then, you know, I've been thinking about a kitten for a long time like maybe six months so now I'm just writing down some ideas and hopefully listeners you are to about what are some things that you would like some accountability and you would like more structure you would like to move at a faster pace towards your goal, I think that's that's one of my aims of this conversation is that we all get to see all yeah, I can do more than that. That would be awesome, my life will be better if I put more deliberate attention on that.
Josh: Yeah, I love that. And I wish we could continue this conversation all day love to have you back on at some point, David, I want to let everybody know that you can hire David he won't ever blatantly promote himself so I'm going to do it for him but make sure you go check out his website, it's focus.ceo, but he also has this amazing free gift I went and checked it out, this is really going to Kind of kickstart you towards us and help you know, where do I start in getting courageous and taking those those first steps and the URL for that you're gonna have to remind me of that one, David?
David: Yeah, yeah, I created a gift basket of goodies for listeners, it'll take you to a hidden page on my site that you can't find otherwise and there's a checklist on how to achieve twice as much in half the time, it's all about focus and a little video on how to implement it and there's a link to my upcoming book, The mouse in the room, and we've already got the mini book ready so you can contribute a little bit of money towards a production costs and we'll give you the mini book right now, it's all about connection, confidence, and leadership, it's a book about transparency, really, and how to how how to make that, oh, I'll stop there, transparency and then there's a link for coaching, too, if you want to get on a call with me, and we'll see if we're a fit, because I'm not a fit for every person and not every person is a fit for me so I like to do a call first and see if it's got leg aAnd you can do all of those things plus, listen to my podcast extraordinary focus at myfocusgift.com, myfocusgift.com will take you straight to that hidden page on my site.
Josh: I love that. So make sure you also go leave him a rating and review I'm actually gonna go listen to his shows right after this so make sure you go check those out. We'll link everything in the description as well and David, just to kind of wrap this up with a little bow, can you give us one final parting piece of guidance for our audience?
David: Piece of guidance. You're doing it right. You're already doing it right? You got yourself this far. All of our problems and judgments are just things that the mind comes up with to keep us busy we can do a better which is awesome, how cool is that there's always a better way to do things but you're already doing well in what you're doing and don't be too hard on yourself and I'm listening as I'm saying this this is nice for me too.
Josh: Yeah, and yeah, you'll echo it back to yourself David especially as you're trying this new acting and getting into that I mean it's fun for me to see that you're applying what you teach So I love that advice and thank you for for sharing that with us.
David: Sure actually do you want to see a picture I can show you a picture right now
Josh: Let’s to do it and to make sure your actual information
David: I haven't posted this online because I don't want anyone coming to the show to see this. But since most listeners aren't going to come to the show in in Colorado I think it'd be totally fine so this is the first podcast I've shown this pitch Ron
Josh: love it yes
David: there we go there's, there's a candid snap the director took during rehearsal in the woods.
Josh: That's so awesome.
David: The Dracula
Josh: so make make sure if you're in Colorado go check that out even though he doesn't want you to. Yeah, love it.
David: There is another one that's fun,
Josh: fun. I love it. Everybody make sure you go check out David's stuff go to focus.ceo, or over to remind me 01 more time,
Josh: myfocusgift, make sure you go check that out and if you liked this episode, please leave us a rating and review that helps us get to the top of the charts as always, and I appreciate every single one of you for listening to this and I appreciate you David for coming on today.
David: My pleasure. Thanks, Josh.