Overcoming Extreme Adversity To Creating A Life Of Fulfillment

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Chris Plough is a big time adventurer and explorer. He founded a company called MavenWire, which became an eight figure global consulting and hosting company before selling it. Chris is someone that has always really intrigued me. He is always doing really interesting things and going on new adventures. He is known for leaning hard against his limits and fears in order to enjoy a great story. From performing naked on a stage in front of hundreds to trekking across Siberia in subzero temperatures on a motorcycle to reach the Arctic Circle

In this episode we will be discussing what three primary factors one must look at in starting a new business. Chris shares how extreme tragedy completely shifted his perspective on both life and business. He discusses how adventures and experiences have allowed him to grow personally and professionally, and why he wants to share that gift with others.


Key Points From This Episode:

  • Chris shares with us at what point in his life he got started in business and entrepreneurship.
  • Find out how selling his company has helped Chris realize what he actually wants to do.
  • Understand why Chris wants to equip entrepreneurs for the world that is coming.
  • Hear Chris’s advice to young entrepreneurs looking to start a business.
  • Learn why it is important to have motivation, desire, ability and to know the market needs.
  • Understand why you need to keep momentum in order to be continuously learning.
  • Find out why you need to get a clear idea of who you are at the core.
  • Hear how skills and lessons start relating to your life as you make sense of who you are.
  • Learn more about the differences between fear and anxiety.
  • Discover how Chris leads into his fears through his adventures and day to day life.
  • Find out why shifting your perspective can help you overcome your fears.
  • Hear what’s the craziest adventure Chris has done and how he has had to overcome fears in his own life.
  • Learn how to be more intuition driven amongst other things.
  • Find out what’s next on the horizon for Chris.
  • Hear what shifts Chris is trying to create for people on his retreats/adventures.
  • Discover different ways to find clarity by understanding yourself and surrounding yourself with the right people.
  • Hear how Chris steps out of his comfort zone in his day to day life.
  • Find out how Chris has grown to be so self-aware.
  • Understand why helping somebody is the one directive Chris believes in.
  • Hear why Jim Kelly and Al Smith are the men Chris most looks up to.
  • And much more!







Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Chris Plough — https://chrisplough.com/

Chris on Twitter — https://twitter.com/chrisplough/

Chris on Facebook — https://www.facebook.com/chrisplough

Exponential University — https://exponentialu.org/

Oracle — https://www.oracle.com

Jay Georgi — http://nadvia.com/

Bright Order — http://www.brightorder.com/

Wayne Gretzky — http://www.gretzky.com/

G Log — https://www.oracle.com/corporate/acquisitions/g-log/index.html

American Dream U — http://americandreamu.org/

Hair the musical — http://broadwaymusicalhome.com/shows/hair.htm

Groupon — https://www.groupon.com/

Richard Branson — https://www.virgin.com/richard-branson

Al Smith — http://www.alsmith.com/

UJ Ramdas — http://www.ujramdas.com/

Jayson Gaignard — http://www.jaysongaignard.com/

Transcript Below:

Read Full Transcript


“CP: So for me, everything coalesces. It’s like is it in line with exploring? Is it in line with teaching and guiding? Is it in line with helping the entrepreneurs or the artists or the explorers of this world shape it? If so, that’s what I’m doing.”


[0:00:20.1] ANNOUNCER: Welcome to The Fail on Podcast where we explore the hardships and obstacles today’s industry leaders face on their journey to the top of their fields, through careful insight and thoughtful conversation. By embracing failure, we’ll show you how to build momentum without being consumed by the result.

Now please welcome your host, Rob Nunnery.


[0:00:47.1] RN: Hello and welcome to the podcast that believes you are destined for more and that failing your way to an inspired life is the only way to get there. Today we are hanging out and learning from Chris Plough, he is a big time adventurer and explorer, he founded a company called Maven Wire which became an eight figure global consulting and hosting company before selling it.

He’s just a great dude overall and I will be chatting directly from Eleuthera in the Bahamas and we’ll be discussing what three primary factors one must look at in starting a new business, how extreme tragedy completely shifted his perspective on both life and business and how adventures and experiences have allowed him to grow personally, professionally and why he wants to share that gift with others.

But first, if you’d like to stay up to date on all fail on podcast interviews and key takeaways from each guest, simply go to failon.com and sign up for our newsletter at the bottom of the page. That’s failon.com.


[0:01:46.5] RN: Hey there and welcome to the fail on podcast, today’s show has me really excited, we have Chris Plough joining us today. Chris is someone that has always really intrigued me, he’s always doing really interesting things, going on new adventures, he’s known for leaning hard against his limits and fears in order to enjoy a great story.

From performing naked on a stage in front of hundreds to trekking across Siberia and massive subzero temperatures on a motorcycle to reach the Arctic Circle. And, I’m really excited to jump into his journey. Chris, welcome to the fail on podcast. My man.

[0:02:18.4] CP: Thank you man, glad to be here.

[0:02:20.5] RN: Let’s just jump right into it man, let’s go into your journey, how did you get started in business and entrepreneurship and at what point in your life was this?

[0:02:28.2] CP: Yeah, no problem. I tried to start a few very crappy businesses starting from when I was like man, I think it must have been like 19 years old. I had traveled across the country to live in Pennsylvania, one of the pretense of going to school at Pen state but really it was because I was in love with this girl right?

[0:02:49.4] RN: Of course, it’s what it comes down to right?

[0:02:51.4] CP: Yeah, I was making next to nothing and I was trying to find ways to make money, I think my first was I created this forms on a disk program and I called the company like Riven Ware, it was crap. It was a horrible nothing, it never went anywhere with it. I kept trying like little ideas like that over the years, nothing really came through.

Ended up working for a startup and giving a sense of what a real business was like. Especially in the software realm and that really formed a lot of my vision of entrepreneurship and then when that startup was acquired by Oracle, I left because Oracle just wasn’t my cup of tea and I started a company called Maven Wire.

We had the expertise there, I was the one who designed the technical architecture for what was then Oracle transportation management so I had a distinct advantage and a lot of the original developers and people had worked software in so we had a competitive advantage against everybody else. Now, I’m telling you this in hindsight, it wasn’t all necessarily planned out that well, trust me.

[0:03:48.4] RN: It never is.

[0:03:49.2] CP: It never is. That was the company for me that really solidified my entrepreneurship and I learned most of my lessons through and where I found the bulk of my success through.

[0:04:00.0] RN: Just first some context. When was this and are you still involved with that company today?

[0:04:04.3] CP: Yeah, started the company in May of 2006 and had been a 10 year journey and was just sold acquired last year and is now part of a company called Bright Order which is run by a friend of mine, Kentin Hoe and another friend, Jay Georgie. Kentin Hoe is the owner and the beautiful part about that is number one is they’re continuing and taking care of a family that I really care about because I became evident to me that the mission of that particular company just wasn’t in line with what I wanted to do with my life.

I feel very fortunate for that and then second, they actually have better capabilities to help Maven Wire in this case Bright Order, achieve what I’d hope to do would achieve from the beginning, it’s almost this continuation of I saw this path of the company and there became another way to achieve that that I didn’t have to spend my life doing. There was a lot of fulfillment in that particular choice and made it easier to go down that route.

[0:05:00.5] RN: That said, what is it that you want to do with your life if obviously that’s not it? What are you drawn into now?

[0:05:06.4] CP: You get to a point, I mean, you can talk about Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs , you have needs and everything else right? We get to a point where we’re looking for something deeper than traditional success right? Sometimes, I can’t say everybody but I can say a lot of people that I know that I get the opportunity to hang around, get to a point of traditional success, there could be money and things or prestige or fame or whatever it might be.

Find it empty and hollow and then spend time trying to figure out, okay, what is it that actually fulfills me? What is it that actually drives me, gives meaning to my life, how can I use this massive skills that I have in whatever area right? Whether they’re entrepreneurial, artistic or whatever else and how can I take them and apply them into the world in a way that it makes a difference?

That’s what I care about. I want to equip entrepreneurs specifically for the world that’s coming because you look at all the shifts in technology, you look at this movement from ambition to fulfillment. I think that that’s the incredible journey that I want to help other people through and I think by doing so, we can create a world that is full of world shapers.

And people who can take this world into the direction that it’s meant to go in and those might be hard words right? I think that you can create an army of good, let me put it that way. That army of good using these tools and technology and everything, it’s coming, we can have a phenomenal impact upon the world as we know it.

[0:06:24.1] RN: So you’re looking to help entrepreneurs that are pretty much already established, kind of forego the empty hollow feeling that maybe you felt, just to get quicker to more of a place of fulfillment, is that pretty much accurate?

[0:06:38.0] CP: Yeah, because that’s a journey I understand right? There’s people within that realm that I know. However, I’m really glad you brought this up so I thank you. What I’m also finding which is incredibly interesting is that I talk to more and more younger entrepreneurs and by younger, I’m talking entrepreneurs who are in like 20’s, especially early to mid-20’s.

Sometimes later 20’s and whose business are just getting going. They’re making six figures, they’ve accomplished a lot but they see that the path that a lot of us have followed in the years previous with the generation previous isn’t the path that they have to go down right?

Instead of going A to B. B being that point of emptiness and hollowness and then trying to find a way to see, they’re asking the question directly. How do I get to see directly, that’s the path I want because I want more meaning fulfillment in my life. I think that you have this two groups, the ones who have been there and done that and don’t know where to go and the ones who say why would I even want to do that? Why can’t I just go directly towards where the future is going right?

I never thought about this before but it also kind of reminds me that Wayne Gretzky quote, go where the puck is going because that’s what the younger entrepreneurs are looking for. Rather than trying to follow where his puck been.

[0:07:49.2] RN: This analogy, yeah. What would you say to somebody that’s not necessarily at that six figure business yet? They’re not necessarily even thinking about fulfillment, maybe they are in the back of their mind but they just want to get business up and running and get something off the ground, that’s their number one priority.

What would you advise to them if you were to sit somebody down or maybe it was even your younger self. What would you say to that person with the path that you’ve already gone down?

[0:08:17.1] CP: It depends right? I think every advice is contextual, depends on who you’re talking to, what’s going on in their life right? But if we generalize this a little bit, first, sometimes you just need to do something to learn the lesson.

I’ll be honest with you, I needed to run Maven Wire as it was even though it wasn’t my ultimate life mission to learn some incredible lessons. When I went into Maven wire, I was very ego centric. I had to be the person to do stuff, I had to be the person who get the recognition right? It was within Maven Wire that I learned the concept of teams and how to build a beautiful culture and how to enable people to accomplish things and the scale that can be accomplished when you allow others to do what they’re best at, to their best ability and with full responsibility, right?

I had to have that lesson in order to enable me to where I am now. That can be true for everybody. I’d say, depending on where you are, what is the lesson that you need to learn to enable your bigger dreams. Never forget your bigger dreams but take a look and see if they are in alignment.

If the lesson that you could learn through this path, even if it’s not where you ultimately want to be enables you to be a step or two steps or three steps closer to that ultimate bigger dream, do it, why not? The least that could happen is you get down a few months, you have a bunch of lessons and then you recalibrate and try something new.

The other thing I look at, whenever I’m looking at any business opportunities. We’re talking about business specifically is I look at any opportunity as the nexus between motivation, something I want to do, motivation or desire between ability right? And between what the market wants.

If you do have a strong motivation to do it, a strong desire to do it, you have a strong ability to do it well and the market wants it, that’s a great business opportunity. One of those is missing or one of those is lacking, it may work for a period of time but it won’t work over the long duration.

[0:10:05.2] RN: Makes sense. With that said, let’s say somebody doesn’t even know what they want yet? They don’t’ know who they are, they don’t know what their ultimate dream is, they don’t know — they haven’t really gotten clarity because that’s not an easy thing to come up — like to just know, especially a young person to know this is my ultimate dream, my ultimate vision, this is the person I want to become. What do you say to that person that doesn’t really know exactly where they want their life to go, they just know they’ve got something inside of them ready to burst out.

They feel they have the potential for more than what they’re currently doing, whether it’s a job, whether it doesn’t matter. They’re still in school, what would you say to that person?

[0:10:45.9] CP: It could be a little similar to the last advice because I believe that momentum is important right? When you stop moving then you stop learning, things stop coming your way et cetera. If there is a step in front of you that is available and at least brings you some level of interest or excitement, take it.

Unless it’s something that’s going to cause you peril in your life. You talked about adventures earlier. I’d look at adventures in business very similarly. My rules for it are fairly simple, will this make a good story, will I learn a good lesson from it? Do I expect to come back alive right?

You can pick the same thing in business, except, instead of alive, it might be financially solvent or have some ability to continue on in whatever way that is. Take that step, whatever that step is, it could be starting your own business, it could be apprenticing for somebody and helping them out, it could be joining somebody’s startup and learning from their particular lesson.

One of the best points in my life was when I joined G Log, that startup where we created logistic software and I got to be part of an incredible team. Because for the first time in my life, I learned what that incredible team felt like. I learned what I could and wanted to create in future companies.

I learned what a small group of 10 highly dedicated people could create in what short amount of time, it was massive, it shifted my mindset. However, along that way, I recommend you could continue to do journaling or look at your core values or there’s a few other little exercises you could do in order to get a clear idea of who you are at the core, what it is that drives you at the core and how can you create something that’s in alignment with that particular core.

While that process will take time, it’s steps, if you never take those steps, you’ll never get there but you can do that alongside something else that’s going on in your life and teaching you the lessons you need or the skills you need.

The path is never direct. I’m going to take a few steps back in my timeline, maybe this is helpful. I have an incredibly diverse background which I am now finding all these little pieces coming to bare in my life but I never actually knew if they would actually coalesce. What I mean by that is, I grew up being massively interested in computers, taking them apart, disassembling them, learning to program a bunch of stuff all on my own right?

I have this computer background, then, I got involved with this mentor and he taught me how to wield and do construction and build stuff right? I went to school for computer engineering, ran out of money, dropped out, joined a startup and then that whole computer thing really kind of took off and all the skills that I build kind of continue through there.

The same time, because I knew I would always have a job, I went back to school and I went back to school for theater arts, I have a degree in acting and directing and design. A fake graduate program because they allowed me to after I graduated around design and everything else right? Then I go on these oddball adventures.

I never thought all of this could happen in one life, get adventure Plough, you have theater Plough, you got business Plough or computer geek Plough.

[0:13:48.4] RN: And wielding and using your hands. Right?

[0:13:51.3] CP: What I’m finding is actually all of this things are coming together, some of them directly, some of them not. I did just get down with a project where we created a ship and an art installation that’s going to be sent to BVI’s to create one of the world’s best dive sites.

I used my wielding construction skills again for the first time in years right? Usually I use that indirectly. I know how to disassemble things in my mind and I know how to build up architectures in my mind that may not be physical, they may be businesses, they may be strategies, they can be things along those lines but those skills are used every day in my life.

The path and the little lessons that you learn, the skills that you learn, they may sometimes seem completely desperate and completely unrelated but if you start to get a sense of where your life is going, you can then see how they come to bare.

I’m beginning to do a lot of speaking, other things with my life because I want to get this message out and I want to affect as many people as possible right? That theater background I have is becoming incredibly helpful in that. I also found it helpful when I was starting my company and try to get in front of a bunch of CEO’s and CTO’s in order to sell our software and sell our services to them.

It was like okay, I am professional Plough right? No problem, we got this, I have no fear. That’s a long winded way of saying, take action, learn the lesson now, understand by doing deeper work about understanding your core in order to figure out how these lessons and how these skills tie in together and allow them to come together into something that’s much more in alignment with what you ultimately want.

Who you are deeper as a being.

[0:15:26.3] RN: Yeah, I think there’s some good nuggets in there man. Because I think one thing a lot of young people don’t do is take the time to get to know themselves. Write down their core values, figure out who they are, figure out what they believe in, figure out where they want to go in life and I think on the kind of on the flip side of that is, they might be looking for — I think everybody at the beginning thinks their business is going to be the only business they do in their life right?

For whatever reason, I don’t know, it’s so weird because I felt the same way. I’m going to have the perfect business, this is what I’m doing the rest of my life. In reality, I mean, how many businesses have we started? Probably a lot you know?

I think, like you said, taking action is the most important thing. It isn’t necessarily even have to be like you said, you have theater Plough, you have professional Plough, you have all these different things. Along those lines, I think it’s really important, not just to take a step forward in your business but take a step doing a bunch of different stuff. Little micro tests, trying to figure out who you are, figure out what you like.

Adding new skill sets because eventually like you said, whether you want them to or not, it will somehow come together and coalesce into who you are and lead you down the right path. I think that was really well said and really well articulated, thank you for that.

[0:16:39.4] CP: I appreciate it, I’m just going to add two things into that if you don’t mind. One is, and you talked about theater Plough and professional Plough, the cool thing is as this comes together, as you get to know yourself, now I just sit in front of people and I’m Plough.

There is no different facet, you get me because I understand me, I’ve taken that time. The other thing that you said and I hope I’m not leading a question.

[0:16:58.7] RN: Yeah, go ahead.

[0:17:00.2] CP: Taking those steps, I just want to recognize and just call out, I mean, there’s a lot of fear involved in that. There is, for all of us. I have created these companies and I’ve had success in my life and I’m now going back and starting, it was last year I started from zero, okay great. Boom, sold, what’s new?

I felt incredible anxiety and fear about doing this and the desire not to take action right? Because to take action means that you’re putting yourself a bit on the line, you’re feeling vulnerable, you could be criticized, all of these things and that never really goes away. I wanted to just dissolve that idea that this goes away, it’s there, it’s always there.

What I’ve learned is, when I feel those feelings, I look at it and go, is this anxiety or is it true fear, right? When you have life experiences, you can begin to differentiate them. Anxiety is just something that you are anxious about, nervous about and it’s this tension that keeps you from action.

Fear is something where your body is going, this is dangerous, truly dangerous and I don’t want to do it. If I do this, we could get hurt or the body may just freeze up, right? Or the mind may freeze up. Respect fear. Fear is worth respecting and everything else but it is very different from the anxieties and everything else that we consider to be feared.

If you can start to feel that difference, always lean into anxiety, just gently lean into it man and you say “Look, I don’t feel comfortable but it doesn’t matter, I’m going to take action regardless” but respect fear.And fear may be something that you have to look at and go, okay, why do I truly feel this fear? Is there something that I need to address first before I can move past that fear?

That’s how I look at that scenario in order to allow for action.

[0:18:37.2] RN: Yup, that’s exactly it man, that’s why I was really excited to have you on because the whole mantra here is fail on and it’s embracing, leaning into not only fear but also like failure because hand in hand in my mind, fear of failure, I don’t mean failure in the respect that it’s a total loss right?

It’s just getting outside your comfort zone and learning right? Getting uncomfortable which you embody amazingly. That Segway, let’s go right into some of your craziest adventures, how do you find yourself leaning into those fears? Through adventure, through your day to day, love to hear more.

[0:19:15.1] CP: Yeah, no problem. I’ve come to understand that at my core, I’m an explorer, I am just ever curious, I want to know and literally experience as much of this world as possible right? To take the comfort zone as you talked about and I want, by the time I’m done with this world to have that comfort zone is why it is possible.

I mean, I can hang out with my redneck relatives on a porch and kick back some beer, I can go to a fancy surrey, it doesn’t matter, I go to the Arctic Circle and survive there in sub 40 temperatures. I have just created this comfort zone by continually leaning in. I’m driven too. I, at my core want to have these and so it makes it easier for me to lean into them.

Not easy because every time we hit something that’s uncomfortable like the body wants to recoil, the mind wants to recoil. But I look at it with that curiosity, explorer mindset of what can I learn here? I believe that the reason, there’s a shift here that happens when you look at things as an explorer or as from curiosity.

Even from empathy and that you then begin to look at it beyond yourself right? Instead of being so self-focused when you're exploring something new and you know, what if I mess up, what if I can’t do this et cetera. Maybe you look and go, what is this like? What are their lives like?

What would it be like to be in this situation and you start to transcend self a little bit. When you do that, the fears go down because it’s now less about you and it’s more about the experience, it’s more about the environment, more about the lesson, more about other people.

[0:20:48.3] RN: I hear a lot of speakers, I’m not speaking much at this point but I hear a lot of speakers also say the same thing in terms of getting out of their fear, going on stage, they make it less about themselves and what they’re saying and what people are going to think about them and they make it more about how they’re going to impact the audience.

It sounds very similar, just wanted to interject that.

[0:21:07.4] CP: I think you’re absolutely right and it is. You know, again, I’ll talk directly to that one. Even having a theater background and having performed in front of hundreds at one point like a thousand or so people, getting on stage when I started getting back on stage and stuff. Nerve wracking man. I think it was all about me, and I’m like oh my God, got to get there and stammer, it was like the worst speaker ever.

I remember I was on stage with American Dream You and something just clicked and I was just, my focus went entirely to the audience and then I felt such an ease right? Well, they’re here, they want to learn, how can I help them learn? It became as simple as that right?

[0:21:46.7] RN: Such an interesting — it’s just a perspective shift right? That’s really all it is and it’s crazy how much that opens you up and releases you from being scared.

[0:21:56.3] CP: Exactly. With that lesson taken in life, if you’re meeting somebody new or going to a new place, instead of what are they going to think about me or man, am I wearing the right clothes? It’s like you know, what can I learn about them? What can I bring into their life in order to make this fun? How can I make this evening fun with them? Whatever it may be.

[0:22:15.7] RN: Yup, they’re probably having the same fear as you’re having.

[0:22:17.2] CP: That’s it, you actually make their lives easier right? They get to open up and as they open up, it makes your life easier as well. By serving somebody else, I think this is a theme in life.

[0:22:27.8] RN: It’s a huge lesson.

[0:22:28.1] CP: You serve somebody else and you get served in return right?

[0:22:32.9] RN: It’s huge. What’s the craziest adventure you’ve done? The absolute craziest? I mean, for me, like going through your little intro, speaking on stage naked. I get terrified thinking about speaking on stage as is. What in the world, tell me the story.

[0:22:52.6] CP: To be clear, I wasn’t speaking on stage so much as, this is back in my theater days.

[0:22:56.7] RN: Just standing on stage?

[0:22:57.9] CP: We were doing a performance of Hair right? Hair the musical and there’s a point in which we all get naked on stage.

[0:23:04.6] RN: Up there by yourself?

[0:23:06.8] CP: It wasn’t me by myself, it was kind of an artistic moment so you’re kind of in the fervor of the moment and everything else. That being said, I think I find it easier to be naked in front of people than most. We were practicing this right? We’re doing our rehearsals for this and there’s a point at which we get Anubis like a parachute and then you take of our clothes and the parachute comes down and we’re all naked right?

First time in rehearsal everybody’s like — we get underneath and they’re like okay, this is the first time we’re going to get naked guys. The parachute was up, we get under it, I’m like — take off all my clothes and I look around and I’m the only one under there naked and everybody else was like, taking stuff off. That one might be slightly easier for me.

The adventure for me honestly that was the most arduous, it was the trip to Siberia. I took a motorcycle and side car with some other people right? We ended up traveling in a group of three motorcycles and side cars. There were five of us. Two in one, two in another and then me and extra baggage in mine.

We traveled 1,200 miles through Siberia, starting at this town called Rivet and then all the way up into the arctic circle through the ice roads of Siberia, camping outside at that time so minus 30 and minus 40 degrees but we met this incredible people along the way, it wasn’t completely desolate, you find towns and stuff along the way.

Got invited into people’s homes and they shared their meals with us, physically it’s absolutely the hardest thing I’ve had to do and I had to face a lot of fears in that particular journey of, one of my biggest fears is permanent damage to my body right? Because we have to live in this body for the rest of our lives and if you damage it, if I do something like blew out a knee, lose some toes, whatever might happen, I have to live with that for the rest of my life.

That concept has always haunted me and the first night we’re camping outside, I had a horrible experience and I literally thought I was going to lose my toes and I spent nine hours that night in a sleeping bag, slowly bringing a foot up, using my hand to caress my feet back into motion to get blood flowing back into them. I can only do one foot at a time and then I have to drop it and do the other one back and forth to keep blood circulating in my feet because my body just wasn’t used to the temperatures and I wasn’t as well prepared that night as I could have been.

It scared the bejesus out of me. I spent a good couple of hours of that time out of my mind. With fear and then I had to sink in to it, I had to relax, I had to calm myself and then spent hours more just doing it almost in meditative state, I came to peace with it and then by the time morning came, I felt incredibly like the gratitude I felt is hard to describe.

[0:25:43.5] RN: Were you in somebody’s home at this point? Where were you?

[0:25:44.8] CP: This was camping outside.

[0:25:46.1] RN: So you're outside?

[0:25:47.8] CP: In a tent, in the middle of Siberia with nobody around and so there didn’t seem to be any way other than through the fear to get through this particular trial.

[0:25:58.5] RN: Did you have any experience with extreme cold weathers before going into this?

[0:26:02.1] CP: Not like that. I’ve got some property in South Dakota and so I had camped outside testing in like minus 15 but I mean, minus 30, I had never experienced before, minus 40 I’d never experienced before. It brought me face to face with some of my deeper fears.

It was the first journey I’ve done, I go into this knowing that I’ve got the skills and knowing I’ve got the ability to add, live…

[0:26:25.2] RN: Problem solve.

[0:26:26.7] CP: Problem solve with very little concern or fear. It will work out one way or another. I know those. This was the first adventure I’ve done where I literally sat down and thought about my own mortality and thought, there’s a chance, maybe it’s a slim chance that I can’t really quantify it but there’s a chance that I may not come back from this and do I still want to do it if I don’t.

Do I still want knowing that and this is still worth it. Ultimately for me, it was. I made that decision distinctly that yes, even with that chance, I wanted to go so there was no fooling me, there was no — I wasn’t trying to pull…

[0:26:58.0] RN: What was the driver there? What made the draw to do it greater than the fear of dying?

[0:27:05.4] CP: Two fold. One was, I just felt the deep need to do it right? There’s an intuitive sense, I wanted this in my life and like I said before, I’m driven to understand the world to go through all this things.

[0:27:18.7] RN: So not so much for the accomplishment? Just more for the experience?

[0:27:21.7] CP: Yeah, I’m definitely much more — I’m goal driven in that I want to get to a goal but when I get to the goal, it’s not about the accomplishment, it’s about what have I learned along the way?

[0:27:30.5] RN: Goal doesn’t matter at the end right? Once you get to it

[0:27:33.5] CP: Yeah, without a doubt and I always look back and I’m one of those people who reflects a lot. I disassemble what I’ve learned in processes and so that’s why the experience becomes so important to me.

Then the second thing is, I want to see both poles of my lifetime. I want to get to the North Pole, I want to see the South Pole. What this trip became to me as well is if I could survive this trip, I knew that viscerally. Not just mentally but in my body experientially, viscerally, I knew that I’d be able to survive temperatures like that.

It’s like a stepping stone, knowing I could do this means that I know, without a doubt, I can survive in order to get to the poles and so like we talked about earlier, like this became a lesson that also tied into greater goals or greater things that I want in my life and so that alignment made it even more important to go down and to try this.

And then I don’t know how to articulate otherwise. I think that sometimes you just hit something and this could be something you want to do in business, this could be an adventure you want to do in life, it could be that girl that you meet and you’re like man, I don’t know why but she drives me crazy and I just have to introduce myself to her.

You hit something where you have to and that’s what this felt like.

[0:28:44.5] RN: Gut feeling right? Intuition, it’s just part of your DNA at some point.

[0:28:50.4] CP: Yeah, that’s something I’ve leaned in to so much more in the recent six years. I used to use intuition exclusively on my adventures so you know, I drove an ambulance in the UK to Mongolia 10,000 miles and we did so with no GPS, no real map. What we do is we have this weird one page map that showed roads and big lines so we can go names for the roads or highways.

We think we’re in this town and we think if we go southeast, we hit this big road and that’s probably this big road and if we follow that big road, it might take us to this other town right? Stuff like this. What that taught me and the way we went about it was, almost the entire time we were running on intuition.

You pop your head up every now and then and go great, I need to understand the map and then I’m going to put the map away and I’m going to live life based off of intuition and in the interim between the next time I pull up the map, right?

I did that only during adventures and I’d be so much in my head and like planning stuff and strategic and everything else in the rest of my life. I came to believe and understand that I could run my life like I run my adventures. I do, I pop up my head now and then and I go, “Okay great, what am I doing? What’s the map? What’s a great way to get there? What things can I bring to bear?” cool, wrap it up, put my map away, stop thinking so much and then work more on intuition and as I’ve done so, I found that I move faster. I move much more accurately, I have a lot more fun and with people I connect so much better because you’re not constantly thinking, you’re in your head or strategizing.

You are just there in the moment with somebody, right? So I have become so much more intuition driven even though I am smart and strategic and all of these other things that these things can work in concert. You just have to figure out in your life how they work in concert.

[0:30:39.7] RN: Sure, that’s interesting. What are you being drawn to today in business, in life? What’s next on the horizon for Plough?

[0:30:49.9] CP: For Plough.

[0:30:50.7] RN: Are we going for professional Plough, are we going for adventure Plough? Are we going for business Plough? Where are we going?

[0:30:54.7] CP: All in one. It’s all in one, it really has.

[0:30:57.4] RN: It’s just Plough.

[0:30:58.2] CP: Just Plough, that’s it yeah and Chris I get to do everything I want. I realized that for me truly my mission is to equip entrepreneurs for the world that’s coming and everything I do is driven off of that. So writing a book, sharing the lessons in the last 10 years in order to help people move from that point of chasing success to chasing meaning and fulfillment because I believe that that’s the fuel of the future that if you have fulfillment and meaning as your fuel, it will last you for the rest of your life.

It’s like moving from fossil fuels to green energy, to sustainable and renewable. You never burn yourself out and so the book is to help people with that in particular. Starting a company with a couple of friends called Expenditure University where we take startups and help them grow exponentially, take many of these lessons in, in order to help create technology infused companies that will affect and shape the world and then on the adventure side, my adventures are beginning to shift.

And that I am taking other people on them to see if they can achieve the same inflection points, the same lessons that I have learned that have shaped my life. So I am testing one in October this year where I am taking four entrepreneurs out to Indonesia to climb and hike a volcano, potentially sleep in the cold there at the volcano and just have a life changing experience in a way to help them find a deeper meaning beyond the rut that they’re in within their life.

So for me, everything coalesces. Is it in lined with exploring? Is it in lined with teaching and guiding? Is it in line with helping the entrepreneurs or the artists and the explorers of this world shape it? And if so, that’s what I’m doing.

[0:32:38.9] RN: Very cool, so for the retreat side what shifts are you trying to make in somebody? Let’s say somebody comes in, they have a business, you take them on this, what’s the transformation that you are looking to create for them and what’s the shifts that you are looking to create?

[0:32:58.2] CP: I think the shift for each person is going to be a little different and that every time I have gone on an adventure, I’ve come away. I call them inflection points. Every adventure I have gone on has shifted the direction of my life a few degrees like some a lot and some a few and ultimately, the point that I end up in life is dramatically different due to that shift that inflection. The very first one I did was that trip to Mongolia in an ambulance.

And in that, that’s the trip where I realized that the path that I was on was completely hollow. It wasn’t going to get me where I needed to go and then I needed to find the right path for me. So the shift for other people is to gain enough perspective in life that you can look back at it, look back at the path that you’re following. Look back at everything that you’re chasing, everything that you are doing and say, “Truly is this me? Is this who I am? Is this where I’m going?”

Because on an adventure not only do you have are you pulled out of your normal life, not only are you in this kind of greater than life experience because it is an adventure but you are also faced with challenges. Challenges that make you or force you to face the real you and if you combine those two things together, who are you really at your core with this perspective, you then are able to achieve alignment and more clearly see the path that you need to go on.

So what I want from people is that perspective and to allow them the space to see where they actually need to go and to help them execute upon that path of where they need to go.

[0:34:25.8] RN: That makes sense. I think along those lines, I think one of the most painful places to be in our journeys are points probably that for the people that want to go on these adventures they’re probably in their own head thinking like, “Who am I? Am I on the right path in life?” for those kind of people that don’t have the clarity, they’re kind of a no man’s land, what’s beyond going on your retreats and getting clarity one on one with you? What are some other ways that you can find clarity like that?

[0:34:55.4] CP: Absolutely and I love this because the only ability to scale something is to put lessons out there. Trust me, you may or may not go with me, you will find somebody who’s right for you or you may do the lessons on your own. I have to learn many of mine the hard way and that’s completely cool, sometimes even best it just depends on what you need. I think that the true path to clarity is achieved through understanding self.

And that that path that you ultimately follow, the one that works is a deep understanding of self then surrounding yourself with the right relationships that are in alignment with who you are and that are genuine and people you want to hang around no matter what, who help your life forward and who you help forward and then it’s taking everything that you have learned about yourself, about the people that you are surrounded with and the skills that you have in order to affect the world.

That’s the ultimate path to follow where it starts with everything that we have talked about. It’s who are you and so it doesn’t matter. You could go on a road trip this weekend and say, “Look I’m just going to jump on a car and I’m going to go someplace I haven’t driven to before and I’m going to allow my mind to wander as I go on this thing”.

[0:36:02.9] RN: Don’t plan it right? Like your UK to Mongolia.

[0:36:05.5] CP: Without a doubt, don’t plan it. You can say, “Look I have an idea that I want to end up here” you don’t even have to follow GPS. You can say, “Look I am just going to follow roads and I’m half way point I’m going to turn around and come home”.

[0:36:15.7] RN: People don’t do that anymore. They don’t go anywhere without plugging into their phone, in their Google Maps, in their iPhone and just go.

[0:36:22.5] CP: Exactly so it’s all about gaining perspective and you can do this in your life at any point in time. I’ll give you another example of a way that I gain some perspective and just shifted my view in life. Remember when Groupons were a thing? Like massive Groupons and stuff like that? I signed up for one that allowed me to ride on the back of a motorcycle with a professional racer around the race track.

[0:36:43.1] RN: That’s pretty cool.

[0:36:44.0] CP: Yeah, it was awesome and I think it was a couple hundred bucks which isn’t cheap but it is also not super expensive. I jumped on the back with that guy and I’ve ridden motorcycles since I was 13. I’ve ridden a lot of motorcycles, I’d ride them and I love them. We were two up, I realized I am like 195 pounds at this point wrapped around this guy and everything else as we were driving riding down and he’s a pudgy kind of racer.

I’m like, “Are you really a racer?” he’s a pudgy guy. We took that motorcycle, the two of us around this racetrack faster than I have ever been and through the corners and tighter leans than I have ever been on a motorcycle before. So it shifted my perspective on what’s possible passing solo racers. He took me to speeds and everything else that I didn’t know was possible and it felt so comfortable and what that did is it shifted my world and said that the limits that I thought existed here for motorcycles are nowhere near present.

That they are like eons beyond where I thought they were. I thought I was riding the edge, nowhere even close to the edge. So what perspective, like little adventure, what little experience could you have this weekend in your life that does the same thing that opens up your perspective on life a little bit, right? And then just think about it and I like to ask why a lot. When something is uncomfortable for me, well why is that uncomfortable?

Okay, I got that answer, I don’t think that’s the right answer. Ask why again, write that down, ask why again and usually it’s after about the fourth or fifth why I get down to something that’s core like digging with why. You just keep digging, digging, digging, you get something there that’s important and then I’m like, “Oh okay, now I understand something about myself I didn’t understand before” and I’ll put it away for a couple of days and then I’ll come back to it and I will sit down and I will journal about it.

Just write about it, what does it mean to me in a free flow state not judging or anything else. Write it down and I often find that I make a connection between that core thing that drove fear in my life and what it actually means to me and it could be some previous experience I’ve had in my life. It could be rooted to some fear that I’ve got about being judged and then once I write it down, the simple thing is that I take that paper.

I have a little fire pit at home, put it in a fire, light it up, let it go and that almost always just releases that fear for me. It was something in that process of identifying it, writing it, naming it. It’s almost magical. It’s almost magical like, “I will write you down and I will burn you and you will go away” right? But it does.

[0:39:07.3] RN: Yeah, that’s interesting.

[0:39:08.7] CP: So any of these things. Have an experience in your life that gives you perspective, ask what you’ve learned from that and why it’s important to you and dig down deeper than the surface level. Write about it a little bit and then release it and if you do that, you can do that over and over again consistently, the lessons you learn about yourself, where it takes you, the clarity you gain in both yourself and where you want to go, that’s all you need.

[0:39:28.9] RN: Give us some context of an actual example for you in this process. Out of all of your business adventure journeys, which one makes you think to yourself, “Man I wouldn’t be here today if that hadn’t happen” or if I haven’t gone through that, I wouldn’t be the person that I am today?

[0:39:46.4] CP: That one is easy. I talked a little bit in our conversation about that trip to Mongolia. I literary, literary there’s no figuratively in it, I would not be here today without that journey. So for context for people listening and in sharing this again. I am comfortable with this. I’ve worked through it so I’m going to share a couple of things here that are maybe a little disturbing but I promise you, I’m okay. There’s nothing you need to worry about.

What had happened in my life is I started the company Maven Wire. We’ve start to achieve a bit of success and then in late December of 2007, I received a call from my grandmother and I had lost my parents. I lost them in a very tragic way. To be very blunt it was a homicide suicide and I share that only for context. It’s not important other than to realize that this was traumatic. I didn’t know how to deal with it. I had no idea how to deal with that level of grief or pain or anything else that was going on in my life.

I package that away like everybody does and stuff in a deep dark place and I am never going to deal with that again. Boom, let’s get away right? Two weeks later I was back at work building this company and putting all of my energy in this company so I wouldn’t have to deal with these feelings I had no idea how to deal with. Well nine months later, the economy tanked and so as the economy began to tank and as the company that I had spent all these energy building.

And now who now is synonymous with my identity began to crack and to crumble and to fail. I felt like a failure. I felt like my world, me specifically, I was failing into failure and I couldn’t show it to anybody. So the people in the company didn’t know what was going on. I was taking my savings and dumping it into the company so I wouldn’t have to fire anybody. Getting the last financial bits of financial solvency just to keep everything running.

Keeping this façade of everything is okay on the outside while inside feeling alone and I didn’t know any entrepreneurs. I didn’t have anybody to share this with. I was taking the burden of the world upon myself. I did not have to but I was and then I started doing really dangerous things with my life. Risking my life because…

[0:41:49.6] RN: Kind of self-sabotage type stuff?

[0:41:52.0] CP: Truthfully, I wouldn’t get to a point and I use these words specifically and distinctly, I wouldn’t get to a point of suicide but if I did something like riding my motorcycle on incredibly reckless ways and I didn’t survive, I wasn’t concerned. So if the consequences were my death and these were the levels of stakes I was playing with. I didn’t care. I truly did not care. As a matter of fact my life would be easier and then I wouldn’t have to deal with all of these things and all of these pressures.

All this false that I felt because I was outside projecting everything was okay in the inside knowing that everything was horrible and I felt that I was horrible. My friend recommended that trip to Mongolia. He just saw me doing crazy things. He’s like, “Oh you’re a crazy guy, you’ll love this”.

[0:42:33.8] RN: He knew.

[0:42:35.4] CP: He didn’t know everything what was going on.

[0:42:36.7] RN: Okay, so he didn’t even know you’re at this point.

[0:42:38.8] CP: No, so a couple of close friends did, very few people did and so it was one of those ideas. This was stuck in my head and at first I was like, “Yeah I’ll do that someday when all of this has worked out and I’ve got enough money and years and years from now I’ll do that” and it just stuck in my head and one day, much like I was driven to go to Siberia I’m like, “I need to do this” and so I began to prepare my company even though things weren’t happy.

It slowly had gotten better but they weren’t great in the company. I began to prepare them for me leaving for two months and giving my partner more responsibility in the company which he deserved and he should have had anyways, giving the key leaders that we had hired who were phenomenal, then giving them full responsibility for their areas instead of being a bottle neck and really being over controlled within the company and then I left.

And in that particular journey not only did I find how unhappy I was and I found at least the beginning of the path towards fulfillment and happiness, I began to deal with the grief of my parents. Held a vigil for them out in the middle of the Gobi Desert and begin to deal with that grief and in the time I was gone because I had released all of these constraints upon the company and because it was filled with people who were capable and strong.

Of course we hired great people, it began to succeed faster than when I was in direct control. Everything began to turn around. So specifically that journey, that journey I would not be here without and that was the most major inflection point in my life. Something that I can’t imagine what my life would be like without that particular event without that particular inflection.

[0:44:14.3] RN: Why do you think it was? Is it just because you had so much stretch of open road where you’re just driving and you’re not consumed with the typical day to day stuff that the busyness of the day to day, you have to sit with your thoughts and you have to deal with it right? You can’t just sit inside your head the whole time when you are driving 12 hours a day, right? Was that the reason?

[0:44:35.9] CP: It’s a mixture and that is a huge part of it, right? I call that askance time and there is just a ton of askance time and for me, driving is one of those things that no matter what if I drive for more than a couple of hours, the subconscious seems to bubble up thoughts and things just seem to come. It’s just slightly meditative to me. You may have something else in your life that does it, cool. It doesn’t have to be driving.

For me it’s driving but then it’s also when you’re on an adventure like this and this is why I believe adventures can be important no matter how big or small they are, you are faced with different pressures. You put away the pressures that we feel that are more meta pressures that we feel in life and these meta pressures are email and deadlines and financial stuff and all these things that are constantly worrying us and constantly clouding our mind.

Instead you focus on am I safe? Can I get food? What is the next step forward I need to take? These things that are visceral, these things that I believe are the core to our being because if you look back at our history as I evolve this is what early man had to deal with and so our bodies and our minds and everything else are actually adapt and evolve to handle these particular pressures directly and as you start to get into that state of dealing with the important pressures in life.

And then you start to allow those meta pressures, those meta attentions to really release, you create the space so that when you are driving, when you have this time to walk and it could be a hike but we had this time for things to bubble up, there’s a space for them too. So you create the space that starts to come up and then you begin to deal with it and I think that it’s that combination together that has a tremendous effect.

[0:46:11.3] RN: Yeah, I couldn’t agree more. For me it’s driving as well.

[0:46:14.8] CP: Is it?

[0:46:15.6] RN: Yeah, it is. Hiking as well a little but I think going on a two hour plus drive alone not with my wife because we go most ways together but when I’m on my own that’s when I get all these thoughts. They start bubbling up and that’s where I get clarity, that’s where my life simplifies. I can’t check email, I can’t do anything else.

[0:46:36.6] CP: Exactly, right and so the parallel when I draw here and I really apologize for breaking in is people talk about and I have tried a lot of things so I’ll be open here but the psychedelics or meditation or driving or anything else right? All of these things get you to a very similar point and that point is flow. That point is where your consciousness and you began to settle down and everything drops just a little bit. The mind enters a slight Zen-ish state and the brainwaves actually change.

And then that allows the thoughts that are deeper subconscious otherwise too to bubble up and so it doesn’t matter how you get there. Driving, hiking, journaling, meditating, for some people psychedelics. I’m going to put a caveat on that last one and say that is not for everybody and needs to be done responsibly and with care. I’ve done it but it’s something that you have to be really careful about but all of these things are to get to an exact same point that allow you to have this exact same lessons.

[0:47:31.3] RN: That’s spot on. So I know we talked a lot about getting outside of your comfort zone. I mean you live it but outside of the adventures let’s talk more about micro adventures and getting out of your comfort zone even on a day to day basis. We’re right here, I had Jason on. We’re still here on Eleuthera in the Bahamas. So on a day to day basis I know even here, do you constantly find yourself on a day to day trying to get outside of your comfort zone or is this more like an organic thing where you don’t have to really force it or think about it, it just happens.

[0:48:10.4] CP: My life has evolved to a little bit of organic. So there are some things that I’m going to more directly and I will share those in a second. There are some things that I lean into just more organically because that’s how I’m driven and there are times when I don’t specifically. So the way my life has evolved, there are some things in my life that are more difficult for me and in everybody’s life there is something.

The thing that I am leaning more and more into is around intimate relationships. Intimate relationships for me, if you want to talk about the point of my life where I feel like, “I don’t know what the hell is going on” and everything else, its intimate relationships. So you may feel fear in one area, I feel the exact same fear and I have to lean into it because otherwise I will avoid it because it is that uncomfortable for me.

So great, I lean into it and I am getting that and I’m in the past have seen tremendous growth there in a gentle leaning into it. Other areas like meeting new people, having conversations with them, doing something that I am not skilled at and learning how to I just naturally lean in now because that’s become my mode of operations, the way that I stand upright. The last part is as I’ve gotten to know myself, I realized that I used to push myself to incredible breaking points because I have a lot of endurance.

Without respecting my body’s need to stop and repair or the fact that I am an introvert. While I am outgoing, I’m an introvert and I need time to recharge right? And so there are times when I just check in myself and realize man, I am worn out and so instead of pushing this limits, this particular day or particular time, I’m going to take care of myself. I’m just going to back off a little bit and I am just going to recharge because that recharge will allow me to go back at it with renewed vigor.

And so I don’t have to push every moment and I don’t have to force things every moment and understanding that balance as you get to understand yourself creates a beautiful dynamic. One where when I am leaning in I feel like excited because I know I am and I also know that I am going to care for myself that I’m not always going to be this slave driver with a whip and so I’m going to care for myself and allow myself to recharge when I need to.

[0:50:09.9] RN: It sounds like you’re in a really strong self-awareness of how to take care of yourself, how to treat yourself, how to even know when you need to take a step back and recharge, have you always been like that or has it just taken a while to get to this point?

[0:50:24.5] CP: I was, like early on and this is why that book I am writing is so much around like changing from ambition to a fuel of fulfillment and meaning and care is because I was a slave driver. I will do this and I had such ability and reserves to push myself to do things that I would just push myself for context. When I was working with that technology start up where I was developing technology architecture for local transportation management.

I was working full-time at a tech company startup which means I was putting in 60 sometimes even 80 hours a week, the same time I was going to school for theater arts almost full time and so I was sleeping two to three hours a night taking Ephedrine to stay awake or massive amounts of coffee and I would do that for months at a time. I literary would not sleep more than two or three hours for months and I would push my body to that breaking point constantly and I abused myself.

So it’s n getting to know myself that I have allowed better care and so I have gotten to know, “Oh man I’m really worn out, where is that coming from?” Okay is it just okay? Just eat a little bit better and you’re going to be fine or exercise a little bit more, you’d be fine or man, I am worn out I need some time to recharge. The other thing with it is because I’ve gotten to know myself, I’ve began to care less about what other people think about me and so when I need that time to recharge instead of “Wow I should really be out there because what are they going to think about me” is like screw them. They’re great people, they’ll understand and they’ll love me.

[0:51:49.2] RN: And he’s referring to I think a couple of days ago, you just took a day to yourself right? We’re all here for a week and you just need a day to yourself and I get that.

[0:51:56.7] CP: Yeah, I did. I stayed in my room. It is a beautiful place and what I did was I went to my room and I took away almost all sensory stuff and I am like just here with me and I didn’t have any fears of judgment or anything else. This is what I need and everybody here cares, you’ll be fine. Nobody actually cares, right? Please I am not that important in life.

[0:52:16.0] RN: We want to spend time with you but if you need time, you take time.

[0:52:20.8] CP: That’s it, right? So it’s been an evolution over time. I did the start here and what you find is you start to pick up that evolution, your self-mind talk, that voice in your head that’s like, “Why are you stopping?” that slave driver gets a lot kinder overtime too and instead the voice in my head is now more like, “Hey man, how are you doing? Are you okay? All right, you want to do a little bit more? We got this. I need to recharge, no problem man I got your back”.

[0:52:47.5] RN: That’s a lot cooler boss right?

[0:52:48.8] CP: It is. It’s like this brotherly or fatherly figure that it cares instead of some slave driver. Man my life has gotten infinitely better as a result of all of those things shifting.

[0:53:00.7] RN: Man, that’s very cool. So just to bring it back, what we believe here and what I believe is that repeated trying and failing and learning is the primary factor and how quickly people in businesses will see positive outcomes. What’s one directive or action item that you would give someone that has a burning desire to create a better life or a business but aren’t sure of necessarily what business to start or what action to get started with?

[0:53:26.4] CP: All right.

[0:53:26.9] RN: Just a simple single directive.

[0:53:29.0] CP: Help somebody. Specifically, help somebody. If you look at the things that I have done that I have led really big shifts in my life, I step forward because I didn’t have a clear direction for my own at the time. Step forward, help somebody with their vision, learn something along the way. Me joining that technology startup that eventually led to me understanding in wanting to create my own company was because I stepped forward and said:

“Great I know Jim and the company that do here, I think I can do great things. I’m going to help them achieve their vision and I am going to learn along the way” that even happens today. My involvement with creating this world-class wonder of the world dive site in the beady eyes was because a friend of mine is like, “Hey I could use a little bit of help” I had some spare time so I went down there and said yeah I can help you bend and weld metal. No problem and ended up joining the team and spending three weeks building this incredible thing.

I got to meet Richard Branson again and some other stuff as a result of it, right? But it happened because I decided to help somebody. So that helping somebody allows you to take action without as much pressure to do something that has to be perfect for you, right?

[0:54:34.3] RN: Right, so help somebody.

[0:54:35.7] CP: Help somebody.

[0:54:36.5] RN: As simple as that, I love it. If you could narrow it down to one person, who’s had the most profound impact on your life and why?

[0:54:45.0] CP: Man, I’m going to give you two and I am a rule breaker so but it’s in line. They’re my grandfather, Big Jim Kelly is one of the biggest men in my life and while he was around, was the man that I looked up the most and his integrity, he was a legitimate hero. He helped pull a pilot out of a burning fighter plane in France because he was a fire chief and a fire fighter. Legitimate hero, he’s the one that has the biggest impacts and then my mentor, Al Smith.

Who taught me how to wield, he taught me how to look at the world and deconstruct it and that everything is moldable and that if I can break something apart in my mind that I could then rebuild it in a way that I wanted to see it and a lot of other lessons. Those two men, Jim Kelly my grandfather and Al Smith my mentor, my life is phenomenally better as a result of them.

[0:55:36.3] RN: Amazing. I know you talked a little bit about Exponential University and your retreats you’re going to start hosting and the book, beyond that or even expound upon that a little bit, what’s getting you really fired up?

[0:55:48.4] CP: That’s it, the mission. We talked about it earlier and you eluded to it, that we only hit these points in our life where we don’t have as much direction and that the reason that is so frustrating is because we are like balls of energy. We’re accomplishers, we’re doers and we don’t have a direction to put that into. You’re like, “Ahh!” it drives you crazy. For me the mission is clear, equip entrepreneurs for the world that’s coming and everything I get to do is to be in alignment for that.

What you notice in that is there’s also service in that. It’s not about Mr. Plough is super famous. It’s about no, help other people. That’s what drives me, that’s what I am excited about and that’s why all these cool things are happening this year in getting created. So that’s my excitement man.

[0:56:30.6] RN: That’s awesome man, well we can wrap it up there. I appreciate you taking the time on our little mini-vacation. What’s the best way for people to actually reach out to you if they want to learn more about Exponential University or if they want to connect with you on social, what’s the best?

[0:56:45.1] CP: Yeah, absolutely but first man, my pleasure to be here. Are you serious? I couldn’t pass this up. If you want to connect with me, number one my main website is chrisplough.com. They could go there, learn a few more things and they can contact me from there. Twitter is probably one of the better places to hit me up because it’s easy just to communicate back and forth; @ChrisPlough on Twitter and all the other social media. If you like you can connect me on Facebook, anywhere else feel free. I share a lot of things and hopefully it’s helpful.

[0:57:13.7] RN: Perfect. We’ll have all of those in the show notes for you to reference but thanks again Chris and we will catch you guys next time.

[0:57:21.2] CP: Take care man.

[0:57:21.8] RN: See you man.


[0:57:25.1] RN: You could find Chris at chrisplough.com, that’s a tough spelling on his last name but he’s @chrisplough on Twitter as well and of course, all the links that spelling and resources Chris and I discussed including more information on his Exponential U and his current ventures can be found at the page created especially for this episode and you’ll find it all at failon.com/011 and also, keep an eye out for the next episode to follow this one.

It’s going to be a bit nuts as it was recorded in a jeep in the Bahamas with UJ Ramdas, Chris Plough who you heard from this episode and also Jayson Gaignard, who you heard from the first episode along with myself of course. We discuss seeking out discomfort and go deep on whether you should have a business partner or not. It’s crazy, it’s fun, it’s interesting, it’s exciting, make sure you listen to it and of course, as I continue to build this project out with the simple goal of getting people to once and for all decide that they are going to fail their way to creating an inspired life.

If you could do one thing to support the cause, I’d be super grateful when you click the subscribe button and leave a quick rating and review, this allows the podcast to simply be more visible to people. To rate and review the podcast it’s really easy, just visit failon.com/itunes, failon.com/stitcher.


[0:58:40.1] ANNOUNCER: That’s all for this episode of The Fail On Podcast. For more resources, show notes and action items to help you find success in your failures, sign up for our mailing list at failon.com.

For more actionable inspiration, we’ll catch you next time right here on The Fail On Podcast.


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