There are some points in our lives when we feel that we need to shift to see who we really are to follow our passion and get the best out of life. From growing up in the adoption system to playing in the NFL, Anthony Trucks – athlete, personal trainer, gym owner, Ninja Warrior competitor, father, serial entrepreneur, and international speaker – gives us an inside look at what has led to his success in all of his business ventures. He shares how the skills he developed playing college and professional football have guided him in business and how he has used his challenges growing up to help guide entrepreneurs today.
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Getting Clarity Through Shifts In Identity with Anthony Trucks
Anthony Trucks, welcome to RISE UP: The Show. How are you doing?
I’m doing well as always. How are you doing?
I am doing fantastic. I wanted to dive in and I’ve got five rapid-fire questions to start off with. The first one is what is your favorite quote?
My favorite quote was made by this guy named Anthony Trucks. It’s pretty cool. It’s a good quote. When I was in college, my college coach asked me to make a quote. The quote was, “There are two types of people in this world, those that work and those that watch them work. I don’t mind the audience.”
Number two, what is your superpower or what is one of your superpowers?
My superpower is navigating a shift in life.
We’re going to have to definitely talk more about that because that is your brand, that is your business and I definitely want to dive deeper into that. What are your three favorite books?
One is Trust Your Hustle Pt. 1 by Anthony Trucks. Number two is Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. It was the first book that opened my mind to how I operate and think. The third book, I love Viktor Frankl’s Man’s Search for Meaning. It’s a cool book to get conceptually go through. I’ve been reading Mark Manson’s The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck. That’s a good book. Those two have my third tossup.
That third one, The Subtle Art is on my bookshelf. I’ve got to read it now. Number four, what is one of your greatest lifetime achievements?
My family. I grew up in foster care. I had a high school sweetheart that I married, had three kids, got divorced. Life fell apart, but we have since found a way to get back together and the marriage. The family is great. My accomplishment in life is being able to miss being a foster statistic and being like a bad dad or a horrible criminal. I have a solid, amazing God-fearing loving family.
Your family is awesome. I love watching your posts on Facebook. You’ve got a daughter who’s a swimmer, a son who plays at De La Salle doing his thing there and then your little one is as crazy as the dad.
He’s a monster, a football player, a soccer player. He was the MVP of his football team. They’re all solid humans. It’s fun.Own your shift. Make your next shift your best shift. Click To Tweet
I will definitely talk about the relationship with you and your wife and go into that because that’s a great story within itself. Last question, what are you grateful for?
I can do this whole cheesy grateful for being alive. I am grateful for my problems. It’s the weirdest thing that for me, I don’t like to share all the time, but a lot of people are always grateful for all the good stuff. You wouldn’t have the good stuff without the bad stuff. For my life, I had a lot of craziness that’s happened, like bad things at the moment. I wish I could fall off the face of the earth. Had they not happened, I would not have any of the positive. I’m grateful for the setbacks I’ve experienced.
What’s one you’ve experienced that you’re grateful for?
The setback for me was I did not finish the script I’m supposed to finish for a product that I got to get out. I’m grateful for the setback that happened because it allowed me to pretty much be able to refocus on some other stuff. It allowed me to see that the script needs to be different. I got up early, I would have rushed through it to get it done before something, but I couldn’t get it done. I had a weird break in the middle of my day. I was able to look at it again and realized that it was not what I wanted it to be. I was able to change it. The benefit and positive was I was able to make it better because I was able to push the time and then skim through it.
We’ve known each other for years now. In those years, we’ve both gone through shifts and growths in different places in our lives. The one thing I’ve always known about you is whenever you are faced with a challenge, you don’t quit. You mentally push through. You figure out a way to make it work. That to you is what’s been to your success. How do you do that? There’s a certain mindset that’s required to be a business entrepreneur. When most people run up against the wall, they give up and they stop. You figured out a way to push through, which has put you in this category where you’re great at what you do. What is that mindset shift that you have? Where did it come from?
It came from all the setbacks, to be honest. They think the people who push through are different or they’re special, they’re better. A lot of this ties into the work I do. Here’s the best way to explain it. I grew up in foster care. I was given away at three years old. The majority of my life has literally been fighting, like fighting to get food. I was starving at home. Fighting at school, fighting to be able to get up in the morning after my foster parents beat me the night before. You’ve got a whole lot of things you fight through. In doing so, the actions that we take in life, they start to solidify who we believe ourselves to be. We will solidify thoughts about ourselves, whether it’s, “I’m not smart or I’m smart or I’m not strong or I am strong.” What happens is the actions that we take or the areas that we fall short in, they start to craft who we believe ourselves to be. Whoever you are, whether it’s a good or a bad person, things will happen in life that challenged that. What happens is we have this thing we call the ego that pops up and becomes a wall to protect that person.
For some people, they’ll be able to say, “I’m not the person who pushes through. I always fall short.” They’ll identify with, “I always stop.” I can’t figure out why can’t push through these hardships. What’s going on is somewhat on the lines in your life you identified as the person that falls short and doesn’t push through. It may be a small conversation in your head, but that’s where it starts from. What happens is your Ego will pop up in actions to protect that. It will give you excuses, “That’s because you’re not very smart. You don’t have that much money. You don’t have that much insight. You don’t have experience there. No one likes you,” whatever it is. You create this excuse that is your ego wall that protects that person. For me, growing up I was the guy that pushed like I would figure out how to get better at football. I’d figured out how to be happy, how to smile. I’d figure out how to not let this get me down.
Little by little, it started to shape my identity. I was the guy that you weren’t going to stop me. I worked too hard. I put too much time in. I’d invested my time into pushing through therefore that’s who I am. In my life now, it’s not even hard for me. It’s who Anthony is. It doesn’t take extra willpower. It doesn’t take extra energy. Literally, at this point in my life, it’s a fun puzzle to figure out. When the world craps on my plate, I’m like, “How are we going to figure this one out?” That’s how I am. It’s not because of anything more than the way that I chose to invest my actions into developing my identity.
I want to talk about identity because I know this is where your business is now at and what you’re doing now is working with entrepreneurs and helping them with identifying identity, working through identity. For you, your identity was wrapped in the adoption system when you were younger. From you and I talking over the years, I know there was this one pivotal moment back in high school when a girl in your class made a comment. Can you share that story because that, for you, was the pivotal shift that took you to where you are or at least created and led you in that direction? What was that moment?
I was not adopted until I was fourteen. I was put in the foster care system at three, adopted at fourteen. At fourteen, I had finally got adopted. I knew where I was going to stay and sleep. The problem was I was adopted into an all-white family as a black kid. It was a little bit of a separation of, “Who the world am I?” I’d never got a chance to play team sports. I couldn’t play anything because of the foster care system. My real mom has a lot of craziness. I remember I started playing football my eighth-grade year before high school and I was horrible. I sucked. I love the game. I still enjoyed it. I went to the next year in high school, freshman year of high school I go out, I do so, so, but then I drop a couple of balls. I get my teammates to hate me. I pretty much chalk it up. It got too hard. I was like, “I can’t push through this.” That literally was my thought. I’m going to give up because all my life that I got through stuff, but when it got hard, I gave up.
I remember I was sitting in this Mr. Housing List class in the back-right desk and there’s a love seat on the right side of this last corner desk. There are two girls talking. They don’t know I’m listening to them because I’d pretty much checked out. My adoptive mom got diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. My dad was MIA taking care of my mom. My brother went to the military. It was me floating. I didn’t care about school. I’d come to class every day with a park over my head and fall asleep. I may eat some cinnamon toast crunch in a bag if I was still awake. These girls are talking and they have no idea that I’m listening. One girl says to the other girl, “The reason I’m so bad is because I’m in foster care.” I remember for the first moment in my life hearing something that I know I’d said in my head. When you hear your excuse out loud and you get an opportunity to hear how stupid it sounds, it crushes your heart. That’s how I felt. I was like, “That’s bad.” That’s going to be my excuse for why I’m a bad dad or a horrible husband or a criminal? Statistically, when you go to any prison in America, 75% of inmates are former foster kids. Three-quarters, 51% of the population of homeless people in America are former foster kids. It’s nuts. I didn’t want to be that person.
The problem is I was starting already to identify myself as a kid that was leaving an excuse in a table of this situation that I had no control over. At that moment, I was like, “That’s not going to be me. I’m going to be great somehow.” I remember going home and making that decision. What ended up happening was I went back that in-between of summers and like, “I’ve got to be great at something.” What I knew is football so I’m going to be great at football. I went and lived in the weight room. I ate the weights. I was on the field. All I was doing at the baseline area was I was investing time. The more time that I invest in this thing, the more it became who I was because when we put time into something, it’s who you are. We put the time in a relationship. You’re in that relationship. When you put time into your job, that’s your job. If you wash your car by hand, for some reason you get some weird emotional attachment to your car. It’s an inanimate object. It’s the time invested. I invested my time into being the best football player I could.
In doing so, it became an identity to push through these problems. I showed the next year and going from a sucky athlete to being a baller. I was murdering cats on the field. I got moved to varsity. Three years later, I got a scholarship to play college football at the University of Oregon. I got to play in the NFL. I’ve been able to push my life past. I attribute all of that to the moments back when I was in high school and figuring out who I want them to be as a human and investing time into the actions to develop that identity.No decisions and no choices matter except for the moment that it matters. Click To Tweet
When you declared, “I am going to be the best at what it is that I’m going to do,” and you took action, there are things in that space that could have thrown you off the path. You can even look at it from a business owner’s perspective. We declare, “I am going to open up my own business,” and we start taking actions. There are things that can throw us off the tracks. How did you stay focused? To go from a sucky football player to balling out to a scholarship to Oregon to play in the NFL. How did you stay on the course?
As a kid, it’s easier because it’s school and it’s sports. That’s all you’ve got. You can choose to do it. At the same time, it’s like, “Do I go to this high school party and drink or do I not?” I chose not to. “Do I hang out with these girls and get in trouble?” I chose not to. I had some mistakes. At seventeen, I got arrested for doing some dumb stuff with some friends. It’s part of life. It’s not, don’t get arrested. It’s a bad idea. Things happen that aren’t expected. That’s the thing is we got to do it first. This is what I teach people now. What we don’t want to do as humans is we don’t want to invest time into the wrong thing. In fact, we will invest no time to be able to ward off the possibility of investing time in the wrong thing. It’s like, “I don’t know which way to go, so I’ll go nowhere.” Literally, people are like, “I don’t know which way to do anything, so I don’t do anything.” That’s how a lot of people run their lives. It’s super awkward. What I choose to do is say, “I want to dial in and realize this one thing first.” No plan that I create is going to be perfect. I have to perfect it along the way. It’s that simple. I start somewhere. I perfect the process. I get closer and closer to where I want to be.
Secondly, it’s a matter of realizing that nothing matters, no decisions, no choices matter, except for the moment that it matters. If you and I are sitting right here and I say, “No matter what this year, I’m going to go ahead and I’m going to start my own podcast. I’m going to get this thing going. I’m going to make sure it happens,” what happens along is that way is going to be something that folds flat. That makes it difficult to get that done. For example, I run into a headache with scheduling somebody and getting a microphone and everything. I can choose to at that moment say, “Whatever,” move on to something else to distract myself or what not or I can say, “No, I’m going to find a way to get this done.” A lot of people, when they’re met with those moments, they choose the wrong choice. If I tell myself I’m going to do something, it doesn’t matter what you’re talking about in comfort right now. It matters when the moment shows up and there’s discomfort. It needs you to make a decision. Will you make the right decision? In business, that’s what it boils down to. It’s setting a schedule of what has to be done. It’s getting it done in that day. If something pops up, staying true to that decision at that moment right there.
I’d say that’s a huge point. You hit it on the head with a podcast because you and I talked. I was telling you the launch of this podcast is the goal is 52 episodes, so an episode a week for the year. It’s funny. It’s trying to come up with the things like, “How am I going to get speakers? How am I going to get people to talk to you or interview or trying to make the investment into the podcast?” These little thoughts and these little ideas come up. It’s actions and it’s staying on course to what it is that you set to create and making sure that it follows through. For you, your story is leaving the NFL and not playing football anymore. What was that next step of action for you? What happened next?
That’s where a lot of us are at. It’s what’s next. Kevin Hart did a whole stand-up comedy on what’s next. I could ask you that same question. We asked ourselves that same question, “What’s next? If I do this and go down this path, what’s next after that? If this thing fell apart, what’s next? What do I do?” What’s next question is a great question to consistently ask people. For me, everybody wants to do their purpose. We don’t want to waste time doing something we’re not supposed to be doing. We want to do stuff we’re supposed to be doing. We want to know what our purpose is, why I’m here. We all think that it’s going to be this moment where we’re walking, all of a sudden slaps in the face like, “This is your purpose. I’m supposed to be a dragonfly herder. I’m going to herd dragonflies.”
It doesn’t work that way. You’re not going to all of a sudden be the grasshopper tamer. What ends up being is that we have these little voices in the back of our heads that are always operating. What these voices are the voices of passion. I want you to think of the journey towards a purpose as like a road with a bunch of different forks that you can’t see. You know there’s one road in front of you and you’ve got to follow the road. At some point in time, you may happen across the next road that has a fork. The way this works is like every day in life we’re walking and we’re doing our thing. We’re presented with something that sparks our passion. All of a sudden, we were passionate about this very specific thing that we internally want to go and do, but for some reason, we don’t do it. What happens is we fall short of this passion. We don’t move further. We never reach our purpose. What I think happens is the people that find out what they’re supposed to do. For me and you, we’ve gone through so many different steps of our journeys. I would never be here right now if I didn’t chase a passion.
I owned a gym for a lot of years. That’s what I was known to do. I was traveling the world speaking. I was in books. I was speaking at your event. All of a sudden it sounds like, “I don’t want to do this anymore.” I literally was like, “I am passionate now about speaking.” What I did I said I’m going to go and I’m going to start speaking. I got to the end of this passion path and I found a fork in the road. The fork was do I stay this path or do I choose a new path? I chose a new path. I chose a new one. I went down that path speaking. I’m like, “It’s fun, cool.” I happened across the stuff that has to do with consulting. I dabble in that. I find this new area where I can do online programs. I can do live events. I get all this different stuff, even the topics I’ve chosen. What ends up happening is we eventually took a place where I’ve found like my purpose for being here, like the gift that God gave the world inside of me is to teach people identity.
The thing is crazy as had I never chased my passions years and years ago, I never would have happened across this purpose. What people don’t realize is a purpose that is your life, which what you’re trying to find, you cannot see it right now. You’re only going to see it when you traveled down that first path and take the forks along the road that even on those forks, you don’t know the next step. You’re going to keep on traversing these different levels, different decisions and different forks. All you have to do is chase the passion that you have at that moment. Chase that thing. Follow where it leads to. Go do that. At the end of it, you’re going to find something that pops up you had no idea existed. Take that path. Eventually, you’ll fall flat. You’ll literally fell face first into it. I fell face first in this identity stuff. After years, a decade, I’m chasing passions. That’s something everybody can do.
I know for the passions, they’ve changed. It went from opening a gym to a big gym to closing it to opening another gym and you’re getting back at that. Since leaving the NFL, what are some of Anthony’s passions?
The first one was I want to give back in a way that was given to me, which is sports. It changed my life as a kid. I could have been a statistic but sports changed it. I opened a gym. I was like, “I’m going to do this gym thing.” For me, I was like, “I’m speaking in this gym industry,” and then all of a sudden I happened across this gig where I can consult. We worked together on the consulting gig. I was like, “This is awesome. I can work for way less time and make three years’ worth of income. Let me go and try that.” I’ve ventured to that space. While in that space, I was introduced to the world of personal development. I had no idea it existed. These rooms are full of people crying like it was nuts. I’m like, “This is awesome. I have a story and a passion still to help people be better than I was. Let me try that.” I closed the gym and I start speaking. I started doing this whole personal development, writing books and doing courses and programs.
While doing that, I’m on the topic at the time of Trust Your Hustle. Trust Your Hustle was in personal development. I started dabbling in business. I get pulled out of the woodworks to go back to fitness with a colleague. I started doing that. I still do this Trust Your Hustle business stuff. After that, I get to this level where someone challenges me on that thing I’d spent four years developing of, “I don’t think your message is Trust Your Hustle. I think it’s identity shift.” I’m like, “You’re telling me the last five years of my life were all wrong?” I went back to my own teaching saying, “It’s still the same thing. It’s a different passion.” That’s led me to a place of the purpose. For example, I would never even have any inkling of a clue about speaking if I never chose at any point in time to take a new path and close the gym. I never would have done it if I’d never had a thought of, “Maybe I can write a book.”
If I never went down those journeys to find out how people love my story, wanted me to be on the podcast. I’ve been an American Ninja Warrior. That would have never opened up doors for me to find new things I love doing. It’s more so for us. Life has an amazing plan already laid out for us, already ready for us to walk down. We over time allow our fears to cover up who was supposed to be and we mess the thing up. We mess the plan because we’re scared of stuff or we make excuses. The opportunity is right there in front of you. We do dumb stuff or make excuses or we’re scared. We mess that plan up and we never see the end result.
I remember in San Diego, in the room when Trust Your Hustle was created. To be told for the last five years what you were doing that’s not who you are and that’s not what they see, how do you react to that? For most people, they’d shut down. I’m like, “I don’t know what to do now.” They get lost. For you, you took that message and ran with it. You created what you’re doing now. In that moment, what were some of the emotions and feelings?
I’m built differently because of experience. Most people go to focus on, “What do I stand to lose?” It’s normal. What do I stand to lose in this change of a shift? The way the moment happened was me and you years ago in Monterey. The Trust Your Hustle flies out of my mouth. It sounds amazing. I lock into that. I rolled with that for years. This was probably months ago with some pretty amazing human beings in this industry. I’m out in Wyoming. I’m running through what I do and how I do it. One of the guys says, “I don’t like it.” I’m like, “What do you mean? It’s my four years of my life. What do you mean you don’t like it?” He’s like, “I don’t see myself in that. I don’t know if anybody can. Your story based on what you’re doing is you’ve been able to navigate identity in your life and it shifts so well.” He’s like, “How did you navigate it?” I started piecing back and reversing doing my process, what I’ve done in life. I’ve always had this perspective. I had it at that moment when he said it. At that moment, I already knew to leave that conversation, I was changing it. I’ve gone through this simple thing internally in my head was everyone stands a look at what we stand to lose.
The investment, I’ve invested in this thing so I don’t want to lose that because I’ve put so much time in it. I don’t want to get out of the relationship, I’ve put so much time. I don’t want to stop this business, I’ve put so much time. I don’t want to quit this job, I’m so invested. Reality is you’re standing to keep something you don’t want in the first place. For me, not that I didn’t like this what I was doing, but I didn’t want the slow-moving pace of it. I didn’t want to have to keep explaining what Trust Your Hustle was from a standpoint of professionals and how do you apply it to your life. I didn’t want that. What I wanted was a success that could come from impacting people. It’s been years of trying to get them to move and it hasn’t moved. Little by little I have some inkling stuff and things progressed slowly, but not the pace I want it to.The more time that you invest on something, the more it becomes who you really are. Click To Tweet
At that moment I was like, “What do I stand to gain if I follow this?” He says, “I can see myself in identity shift.” We’ve all had to do it. A lot of us do it poorly in relationships, in business and our health. A lot of human beings struggle with it all day long of who in the world am I? How do I get what I want by being the person I am or who I have to be to get that thing? He says, “You’ve done it so smooth.” At this moment I’m like, “What do I stand to gain if I make the shift?” I stand to gain not having to explain so deeply what an identity shift is because it makes sense when you hear it like, “Identity shift, I get that. It’s easier.” Framing up how to teach somebody to do that, which boils down to actions and then developing something that people can see definitive end results from. I was like, “That’s all ready to go.” At that moment, what I saw was not what I stood to lose but what I stood to gain. That is how I see the world. It’s never about what I’m going to lose. It’s what do I stand to gain.
If it’s what I want, how long am I willing to prolong earning that? How long am I willing to put space between me and that thing? If we are always focused on where we stand to lose, the gap between us and what we can gain gets bigger because I’m always going to hold on to this anchor behind me. The moment I was like, “I want to do this. I don’t want to spend too much time getting this end result that I can see. I’m going to burn the boats. I’m going to take off.” That’s what I did. I’ve trashed the logo. I have thirteen courses I no longer sell. I’m starting completely from scratch. At the same time, I’ve already had more progress in the last eight weeks with it than I did prior to the last eight months with Trust Your Hustle. It was a smart decision to go with it. It still resonates. It still some of the same stuff I was doing, but in a different focus and with a different lead. It is a different lead course. It was a matter of having to focus on what do you stand again and how long are you willing to wait to get that.
You see it on Facebook with all these, “Make seven figures, do this, do that.” Do people not have the patience to see it all the way through? If that’s the case, can you create patience to see it all the way through?
It’s not patience. It’s the crazy part. Patience is a part of the process obviously. You have to wait for something. It’s the law of the harvest. You can’t plant a seed now and get a tree tomorrow. You have to invest. You have to water that so you can harvest. What happens is a lot of people, especially in businesses, they’re given a bunch of tasks to do, a bunch of information. In my book, we’re in the back the information age. Information is so readily available. It’s so prevalent. It’s there. You can get a college degree for free off of Google. What people don’t realize is it’s not a lack of information, it’s not even a lack of tools. Nowadays, you can have access and you get free websites through different platforms. You can get everything you need for free realistically. The problem is it’s not the course or the book, the program or the coach, it’s you. It’s the individual.
For me, what I look at is it does not a matter of patience of prolonging to get the thing you wanted. It’s how long are you willing to stay who you are hoping you’ll get this thing you don’t already have. If you were the person that has those things, you already have those things. There’s someone below us right now that’s like, “I want what Khaled has. I want what Anthony has.” I have it because of who I am, because of who you are. It’s how you operate, your daily operations, how you think, how you process. It’s who you are. They can’t fathom the difference of what it is. They’re not the right person yet. For me, it’s not a matter of patience, of waiting to get that seven-figure thing and panning out.
When you’re given ten steps to get done, how many of those ten steps do you stop at or do you fall short of because you have an internal bit of a holdup? You feel like a fraud. “I’m not the guy that does that. I’m not the girl that says that,” or maybe you have this fear around failure or fear around judgment because of this new thing you’re going to venture into that you’re not expert at yet. You tell yourself, “You’re not an expert.” We do and we start telling ourselves excuses or different things to hold ourselves up. If we had to accomplish eight tasks to reach that seven figures, but you didn’t identify internally with five of them, five of those things are never getting done. Therefore, you’ll never have the results. It doesn’t matter how much information you have. If you can’t nudge yourself into taking the action because it’s who you see yourself to be, you’re never going to have the result. That’s where a lot of our society is right now. You can craft your persona online easily. You can put pictures up. You can put quotes. You can create and craft your identity online. The problem is behind closed doors. When it comes time for you to make this thing and put it into the world, if you don’t have full confidence that you are that person who does that thing, it will always get held up for some arbitrary reason.
I remember even myself going through some of those feelings and emotions as I was getting ready to launch a podcast, the events, the coaching. You go through them not like, “Why am I the one doing this? Why am I the one who’s creating this?” You start questioning yourself. I know that’s held me back for many years. I know you and I have had those conversations over time. I want to go into what you’re doing now with identity because I think those things start creating this identity when you keep repeating them. As we shift to identity, the relationship with yourself, the relationship with others, what is identity all about now and how does that encompass what you do now from a business standpoint?
It’s always the tools technique than the technician. If the technician isn’t sound, you can’t get the job done. That’s what it boils down to. If I’m not the person who’s supposed to do those things, I’ll always fall short. The work that I do now is I pretty much help people get to the place where they are the person who does this thing that they’re supposed to do to get what they want. You can’t expect to just work hard and then eventually have this thing. Assume like, “I got this thing now. I’m going to do different stuff. I’m going to wait to be the CEO of a Fortune 500 company before I start exercising as they do.” No, you’ve got to work out first to get your brain right. It’s certain things. They figure if they can have this money, then they can do stuff differently and they will become that person. Before you have seven figures in the bank, you got to have seven figures in your heart. You have to know that you have to be a seven-figure earner inside before you become a seven-figure earner outside. That person operates differently. There’s a difference in identity between a five-figure, six-figure and seven-figure plus earners, a different sense of identity.
If you look at those people, people who walk into a room full of millionaires, they think they’re weird like thing. If you walked into a room, you’re going to think, “Why do they talk like that, think like that? Why are they so analytical? Why do they ask so many questions? Why are they always taking so many notes? Why are they always worried about that? Why are they dressed that way?” Whatever it is. At the same time, you don’t comprehend that because you’re thinking that way and you’re bearing and almost demonizing them, you’ll never have that thing because we don’t want to identify as a bad, weird person. What I do is I walked into a room and I say, “If these people are all billionaires, what is it that they do differently? How do they act? How do they think? What questions do they ask? When they wake up in the morning, what goes through their brain?” If I can figure out what that is and I can identify myself with that, then I’ll almost naturally move that way because it’ll shift my thought process, how I handle problems, how I apply information, how I take the risk and how I mitigate fear.
What I do now is when I work with entrepreneurs, a lot of it is going in and saying, “You’ve already spent the money on courses and programs and books. You’ve already done that. You’ve bought the tools. You’ve been paying every month for your ClickFunnels or Kajabi account. If you’re AWeber, you have an ActiveCampaign, you’ve been paying for that for a year. You already got this stuff, but it’s sitting dormant. A lot of it is just sitting there. Why? “I don’t know.” What we do is sit back and we start unpacking the different parts of who they are that stopping them. As you unpack it, we take a step because a lot of it for me, it’s not the whole mindset and habits. Those naturally take care of themselves when your identity starts shifting. When you start shifting who you are, who you internally believe yourself to be, I promise you the habits change, the mindset changes, all of it changes to a stance where it’s like you start protecting your ego with actions. You start changing stuff.
My job now is getting people to literally become who they need to be so they can have what they want to have. There are four separate types of places we sit in. It’s knowing who you really are. At the same time, it’s knowing who you aren’t. We think we’re a certain person, but then there’s actually someone who we really are. It’s who you think you are. At the same time, who we are, who we think we are, then there’s who we want to be. It’s one that a lot of people think like that’s the end result. I know I found out who I am based on what I thought I was, I’m not that person. I’ve admitted I’ve accepted this is who I am, who do I want to be? People say, “I want to be Elon Musk. I want to be Richard Branson. I want to be Tony Robbins. I want to be Oprah. Whatever it is. I want to be that person.” They’ll choose who they want to be or who they want to have. What they’re missing is who they need to be. That’s a far separation from who you want to be because who I want to be is based on what I already see. It’s based on what I already know. The truth is if you already knew this stuff and running very clear, you probably usually be doing it.
I’m looking at who you need to be like, what do you need to do? Because the stuff you need to do is going to be far outside your comfort zone and that’s the stuff that moves the needle. It’s the stuff that I at the end of the day is like, “I don’t want to do that,” but I got get it done. Business owners never think about that. They never look at who they are. They never dial in and how to change our identity. If they can figure out this simple thing that the only separation between them and the money and them in the success is simply who they are. If you realize it’s not a bad thing to not be that person because that person you are got you here. That’s okay. It’s good. There’s nothing wrong with that, but we still got work to do. If you stop on your laurels, you stick right here, you’ll be sitting like a kid on a stool trying to reach and say, “I want that candy over there.” Get off your butt and go walk over and get that candy. We’ve got to get people to get off their butt and keep on moving towards becoming who they have to be to get what they want.
You’re around millionaires and billionaires with the people you talk to in your circle of influence. What have you noticed is the difference between a five-figure to six-figure and six-figure to a seven-figure? What’s the difference?
For me what I find is a five-figure earner, the person is not quite at six figures, that person is solely focused on things that they want for themselves. It’s like what I want for myself because we can push ourselves to earn for ourselves, but the problem is we will shoot for the bottom typically. We’ll get enough to get by. That’s what we’re looking for is for ourselves. Whenever you start getting to the point of a person’s in a six-figure range, that person is trying to serve others in a small way, trying to get out for themselves. They want to serve others. This is most business owners. “I’m going to go and create a business. I’m going to try to reach other people and insert them and help them a little bit.”
These are individuals that are trying to help outside of themselves. They’re generally in a positive way serving people at a higher level. Think about it. We can get up to $900,000 and is still being a six-figure range. You’re still in that realm. What I find with the seven-figure people, it’s not that they’re trying to help other people outside of themselves or they’re trying to change the world with their message. That generally is a separation. Even if you’re in a career like being a CEO, you’re going to be in a business that’s trying to change the world. If you’re making seven figures as a CEO in a career and a job, you’re doing something in a realm of business where you’re trying to change the world. I think the separation is not so much that it’s outside of you, but that’s a duty. People who are in the seven-figure range, they have a duty in their mind they identify with. “I was put here to do this. There is no question. This is my calling. This is what I do.” When you have that anchored down, everything with fear and anxiety, it gets outside of you because for you, you’re not stepping into a world where people can judge you. They have to judge the mission.
They’ve got to judge that the message, “It doesn’t matter. I’m a messenger. I’m bringing this out. I was called to do this. I was brought to the world to do this. I don’t care if you don’t like it, I’m still going to do it. This is going to change the world.” That’s why you have people that do so much different. That’s why Tony Robbins existed. That’s why Oprah, Elon Musk, Richard Branson and all these people exist because they have these bigger, massive world-changing messages. That’s the separation between seven and six-figure earners easily. I’m not trying to serve outside of me and serve people. I’m trying to serve as a legacy. I’ll leave this world a message that shifts the world from the time I was here.Sometimes a different passion leads you to a place of purpose. Click To Tweet
What is it about the message? You’ve talked about creating that message and helping them define who they are or who they are not. When it comes to defining who they are, how do you define that? If I was working with you and you asked me, “Who are you?” How do I define who I am?
I don’t know if there’s a perfect answer for that. I know there’s a way to gauge, but pretty much our identity it’s tough because it’s tied to so many different outside facts. It’s tied to your experiences. It’s tied to your values. It’s tied to your beliefs. It’s tied to your actions, your activities. It’s also most people don’t realize it’s tied to your culture. It’s tied to where you live in the world. If I live in America, I value certain things differently than I value in say the UK or in China. When I asked who somebody is, it’s one thing that most people go and say, “I’m the guy who does this,” but they usually list-off things that they’ve achieved in life. They list off the things they’ve achieved. What I’ve come to find it’s not tied to your achievement, it’s tied to your transformation. For example, let’s say I had a desire of I want to lose 100 pounds. We’ll do our thing and you’re not going to tie yourself to a thing that says, “I’ve lost 100 pounds.” There’s a part of an achievement when you see that scale, it’s less 100 pounds. It sounds great. It feels amazing.
We are the transformation that happened along the way to get there. That’s who you are. You’re the internal person. If you list the things, “I’m a perseverer. I’m a person that stays consistent. I am a person that stays focused on my goal. I’m a person who overcomes hardships.” Whatever it is with the transformation points that were different for you as a human to get the achievement, I believe is who you are. My identity is I’m the owner of Trucks Training. I had my gym. I’m the owner of Identity Shifts. It’s not who I am. Who I am is a person that created that, that achieved that. There’s a reason people of certain calibers, human beings can bounce around from career to career or business to business. It’s the Midas touch, they call it. They themselves are the person capable of doing certain things, whether it’s self-belief or action or grit, whatever it is.
Those certain people have that part of them that identifies with. That’s who they are. It doesn’t matter what you think of them, they don’t even do it for you. They do it because that’s who they are. It naturally flows. That’s the reason Steve Jobs gets kicked out of Apple. He goes to Pixar, I think it was. He gets hired back. He gets bought up. There’s a reason that the dude is a different dude. He’s not any smarter than the people. As a kid he identified with being the smartest person in the room and driving hard than anybody else. Because it’s who he was, his actions had to identify and protect that. That’s how he created himself.
I want to talk about driving hard because that’s the one thing as entrepreneurs, that’s the whole trust or hustle, the grind, hustle and that. There’s so much that we sacrifice in driving hard. For you, I want to touch base on relationships and more specifically the relationship with your wife because right now you have an amazing relationship. You have an amazing marriage. I know you guys are both getting ready for, I believe it’s a half Ironman. I want to talk about that because men that play such a big part in identity and in shifting. I know for me specifically a year ago, I went through my own divorce. The impact it had on my business, you and I were on the phone talking about it, was huge. For you, coming from the adoption and being adopted in different homes and in that mindset of, “I’m not going to be a great dad or a great husband.” That possibly being who your identity could have become. Talk to us about the relationship with your wife and how strong it is. It was never at that point. There was a shaky moment in that marriage. Talk to us about that.
I’ll call it more than shaky. I had a divorce. For me, we were high school sweethearts. I played college football. I played the NFL. I came home. We had businesses. I opened my gym business. For me, I identify with the guy of, “I’m the former NFL athlete. Everyone is going to train with me.” I’m now the gym owner. That’s who I am. That’s what I did. I in my head thought, “If I’m going to be successful, I got to bring home the money. I got to make sure it feels good.” I Identify with that. The reality was my wife wanted a husband at home. She wanted me to be present. Because of my identifying with the wrong aspects in protecting my ego and making excuses for it, I drove my wife away. We got divorced after some craziness. It got to the point where I had to introspectively look back at who I really am. I knew who I thought I was, but who I was had got to the end result. The common problem with my business wasn’t always successful. I almost went bankrupt three times. I was in the worst shape of my life when I owned the gym.
I was not doing well. The common thread was me. When I finally stood back and I was like, “That’s crazy that this is who I am. I’m the common problem. What is wrong with Anthony? What does Anthony not doing right?” Because he got himself here, I’m a gym owner. I played the NFL. I look on paper like I’m the catch, I’m the dude. Everything is falling apart. What ended up happening was I sit back and swallowed all my pride and make the realization at that who I was, it was the problematic part of my life. It didn’t mean I always had to be that person. It’s a shame. When I look at shifting, it’s not change. If you think about like changes, I’m going to change new clothes. I’m going to put all these new clothes on. A shift is different because a shift means you can still stay the course, but adjust your angle. It’s like an airplane taking off from San Francisco. If it adjusts the angle by five degrees, it can end up in a whole different state on the other side of the country.
It’s a shift that can adjust every destination you go to. When I look at it I said, “My marriage and my business and my health, everything, what do I got to look at?” Part of it for me was taking a good inventory of the stuff that I was part of. What I was responsible for, what I didn’t want to own up to and pull the ego back and say the person that is Anthony, he doesn’t have what the Anthony I am here wants. That Anthony doesn’t have the money, doesn’t have the stability and doesn’t have the marriage that he wants. The Anthony that has those things, he is different. He’s a different person. He talks to his wife differently. He puts his time in different places. He shares with his kids differently, he does all these different things. That Anthony was very hard to create because that Anthony was one that had to choose how to bite his tongue when his ex-wife was flying off the handle and sending crazy text messages. That Anthony was the one that’s like, “I’ve got to work, but I can’t work at my kid’s game.” I had to put my phone down at my kid’s games so that Anthony doesn’t sit on his phone all day when he’s at kids’ games.
That Anthony, he works out. He had his own gym. He lifts his own weights. That’s what Anthony does. That Anthony was built through actions. The same as I was when I was a kid. That Anthony, all he did was change the actions. It’s easier in that aspect because you know what actions to change. To be honest, a lot of us, we know what we should do, we just don’t do it. Realistically it’s when you get to the point of doing what common sense tells you to do, that’s when things start adjusting. The more I would put time into that, that’s how I became that new person.
My actions would protect that by the way I spoke to my wife, the way I was around my kids, the way I showed up at my exercise and training. Those little steps pushed me further and further towards being able to, one, go out and admit my faults to the world and to my ex-wife, and to take a look at myself. Here’s the one thing, my wife had an affair. That tore us apart. It broke my heart. It broke me. The idea of going back with her, that’s difficult. A lot of people like, “What are you doing?” It doesn’t make any sense. Someone cheated on you and why would you even consider that? The part of me was having to step back and realize who am I, am I them, and what’s the identity that I want to have growing old? My identity was I want to be the guy who’s in my house with my kid’s mom at 60 years old, sitting on the couch, watching whatever I like. That’s what I want.” That’s who I see Anthony be and that Anthony does not listen to them. That Anthony does his own thing. That Anthony figures out his household. That Anthony owns his mistakes and that Anthony does the things that a marriage desires and needs of him to do.
For me, it was pretty much able to swallow my pride, tuck the ego away and then change the way I acted. Change the way I thought, change the way I communicated and making it not so much that’s worth but genuine actions where people got that and she got that and we fixed it. We were able to figure out how to make it work. To this day, it’s still a constant process. I’m not perfect far from it, to be honest. We still have crazy dumb arguments. It’s way less a heated argument than it ever was before because I realize that in the moments of my fighting, in the moments of craziness I talked about before, none of the things I say matter until the moment that it matters. I’m in an argument and I’m heated. I’m emotional. No matter what I said three months ago about how I handle my emotions in an argument, it only matters now how I handle it.
If I tell myself I’m not going to fly off the handle and berate my wife or I’m not going to say rude things, I’m going to bite my tongue when it comes to pass. If I don’t do that in those moments, it’s not me, it’s not who I am. I have to in those moments be that person. Here’s the cool thing, once you do it one time, the next time it comes to pass, you don’t want to make the last time you did it worthless. You do it again and again and now it becomes who you are. It becomes a life you want to live in. It becomes the world you envisioned for yourself. It was hard because it took a lot of biting your tongue and craziness. My relationship is in place now because of the person that I was that I didn’t want to be and me consistently trying to crack with my actions the new person that my marriage needs me to have.
I love watching you and your wife interact with your workout videos and all about the family. Knowing that story over the years was definitely not there in the past. It’s amazing to see. I want you to talk about moments. This is our final question and I ask all the guests. For you, Anthony, what was your rise up moment? It doesn’t have to necessarily be one moment, but what for you was your rise up moment?
My rise up moment I think came when I hit the bottom. After what had happened with my wife, I was in this tricky place. You’ve got to keep in mind, I’ve now lost my marriage and my family. I grew up in foster care. That for me was the pivotal piece of everything. I’d lost the thing that mattered the most, my family. The gym business wasn’t going so well, so I’d lost part of my money as a gym owner. I’d already lost my career in football, so I’d lost the identity of the football player. When you have these things you’ve gained in life and you lose them, you don’t just lose them, you lose who you are. That was my thing.
I got to a point where I drove off one night, I sent a text to my friends and family. I said, “Please tell my kids who their father was,” and I was done. GPS on my phone, the police found me. Nothing crazy happened. I didn’t do any actions. I drove off. I was like, “I’m out of here.” I went back home. It was this moment where I was in a super dark place. My buddy had come up to me and he says, “When I heard you drove off, I physically was sick.” He’s a friend of mine. This is the weird part. He says, “You’re my hero.” I was like, “What do you mean I’m your hero?” I’m like, “We played football in high school together.” He says, “I know what you went through. I know what you’ve gone through. I know what you’ve achieved. I’ve watched you play professional football. You’ve opened this gym. You have your family. I’ve seen what you did. You’re here for something bigger.”
That was for me this moment where I literally sat back. I was like, “I have almost accidentally without even knowing it helped people’s lives around me without even knowing it.” He’s this Alpha Dude. He doesn’t say these kinds of things. I’m like, “Maybe there’s something more to me.” It wasn’t so much that I rose up. The hope rose up. It drove me to stand on my two feet again to fight for my pride back, to become the person I rose up to become the man I am. It’s been baby steps. I’ve had a lot of pitfalls on that journey. Little by little you to start navigating and rising up every day from a singular moment. For me, that moment was stepping into that to rise. That was a bad decision obviously. I am made for more and there’s more in me to achieve. My rise up moment was rising the hope past this pain.
Thank you for sharing that. I appreciate it. What’s next for Anthony Trucks? Where can people get ahold of you?
You can find me on Instagram, @AnthonyTrucks. If you want to join a master class where I teach this stuff about how to make that shift so your business can run smooth or your life, you can go to Masterclass.OwnYourShift.net. That’s the area where I pour in and teach people these things. There’s a great opportunity for us as human beings in our business and our personal life when we understand that missing piece and put that puzzle piece in place. For me, I put that piece in place for people.
Thank you for coming on the show. Thank you for being an amazing friend. Nine years into this friendship, I know we can always count on each other for a phone call or a check in. Those are rare moments that I definitely value and appreciate. I hope you enjoyed the show.
- Anthony Trucks
- Trust Your Hustle Pt. 1
- Seven Habits of Highly Effective People
- Man’s Search for Meaning
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck
- Trust Your Hustle
- @AnthonyTrucks – Instagram
About Anthony Trucks
Anthony teaches people how to “Own Your Shift” to take what life throws at them and use it to accelerate their success. From a former NFL player, American Ninja Warrior, coach, consultant, author, speaker, husband, and father of 3 incredible kids.
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