Dr Isaiah Hankel, Author (Escape Plan), Speaker podcast

Jim: Welcome to the 14th episode of Wrestling with Greatness, the show for former wrestlers who want to achieve their full potential, get clarity on their goals so they can take massive action and lead their ideal life. I’m your host, Jim Harshaw, a former Division 1 All American, former Division 1 head coach and among other things, I am a scuba diver. I’ve got maybe 60 or so dives under my belt. I’ve got my advanced certification. I’ve dove in probably five or six different countries. I’ve done night scuba dives. I’ve done wreck dives, ship wreck dives, I dove in a collapsed volcano cauldron in Guatemala at 5,000 feet elevation.

I’ve done some pretty cool stuff. Swam with the 12 to 14 foot estimated wide manta rays, they swam right over my head. So done some pretty cool stuff but I digress. In this show, I take you inside the minds of the most successful people on the plaent who have wrestled and together, we learn their blueprint for success and fulfilment. Today, I bring you Dr. Isiah Hankel. Isiah will tell you that long ago, he started out actually as a sheep farmer. And now he’s got his doctorate in anatomy in cell biology and he’s presented at schools like Harvard and Stanford, Cambridge and Oxford. He’s an author, he’s a business coach.

He’s actually an entrepreneur who’s formed three multinational businesses and he recently wrote a book called ‘Black Hole Focus: How Intelligent People Can Create a Powerful Purpose for Their Lives.’ As far as wrestling background goes, he grew up near Spokane, Washington and wrestled for East Valley Spokane High School. He wrestled Division 1 for Franklin & Marshall College in Pennsylvania. As you’ll see, Isiah is just a huge thinker. He’s someone who helps others get clear and get focus and helps them take action to make their lives better.

In this interview, he offers some really great ways to think about being successful and how to go about reaching your goals. So let’s get into the interview here with Isiah. If you’ve already left me a review on iTunes, thank you. Every one of those really helps boost the show and the search results when people are looking for new podcast. So I appreciate that. if you want to share this with a friend, if you’re getting value from this, shoot them a text and say, “Hey, do a search for Wrestling for Greatness on iTunes or on Stitcher,” and they’ll find it. Or you can send them to the website, jimharshaw.net. So I appreciate it if you just share it with one person if you’re getting any value out of this at all. Without further ado, let’s go into the show. Let’s get into the interview with Dr. Isiah Hankel.

All right, here we are with Dr. Isiah Hankel. How you doing, Dr. Hankel?

Hankel: I’m doing good Jim, thanks for having me on.

Jim: You’re welcome. Thanks for making time. I know you’re busy man, you’re in Seattle these days, is that right?

Hankel: Yes, I’m in Seattle right now. It’s a beautiful day out. It’s good to be back in the States for sure.

Jim: That’s awesome. You’re doing a lot of travelling, doing live events and things like that, am I right?

Hankel: Yeah, few different things. It’s been a busy year. Busy but productive.

Jim: Good, good. Let’s start out with this. Tell folks about yourself and what you do. I gave a little bit of that in the intro but give it to us in your words.

Hankel: Yeah. My goal is to help people set goals and achieve them. Especialy people who want to transition into a new lifestyle or a new career. We do that at several different levels. We work with a lot of athletes, a lot of people who are transitioning out of the corporate world into their own businesses. They’re creating their small businesses on the side. I work with high-level academics, basically helping them transition from academia into businesses. Lots of different people, anyone who feels stuck in their life and is ready for a change, that’s what we do. We help them create that change and move forward.

Jim: Well, I definitely want to dive into that pretty deeply and get some great insights. I’ve followed your stuff and I’ve followed you online. Been on your website, read some of your stuff and interacted with you before. I know there’s a tonne of value there. I do want to dive into that but let’s start at the beginning. Like our listeners, you are a wrestler. Tell us how you got started in wrestling.

Hankel: How I got started, well, like a lot of wrestlers, there was somebody in the family who did it. For me, my dad wrestled and he was the wrestling coach in junior high. I did a little kid wrestling because my dad did it. So I tried it out but it wasn’t until junior high that I started doing it consistently. My dad was actually my coach so he’s always twice as tough on me than as everybody else. I had this kind of like love-hate relationship with the sport. I did it in junior high, grew up from there, and was really fortunate to have a couple of great coaches in both junior high and high school that kind of cemented my love for the sport.

Jim: And I guess at some point, you crossed paths with another one of our guests on the show, Dr. Coyte Cooper, right?

Hankel: Yeah, yeah, in high school. He was legendary in high school. He had some kind of insane record, like 110 wins and 3 loses and he was just a beast. We were in the same weight class so yeah, he was a sight to see for sure.

Jim: Yeah. Then you wrestled in college. Tell us about that.

Hankel: Yeah. So I grew up in Washington State and went all the way to Pennsylvania for college. Wrestled at a smaller Division 1 school outside of Pennsylvania called Franklin & Marshall College. They were one of the original powerhouses along with LeHigh in the ’70s and they kept their Division 1 program along with a couple of other sports that stayed in Division 1. The rest in school were Division 3. So it’s kind of a unique experience. It was at a very small school. One of those small, private art schools with a lot of these trust fund babies and blue blazers. And then there was the wrestlers, and it was maybe 2,000 people at most. But then, we were in the IWA so we were seeing Cornell and Rutgers and Lehigh. It was a great experience.

Jim: Yeah, I’m very familiar with Frank & Marshall. I actually coached at Slippery Rock University and other small [crosstalk 00:06:57] Division 2 athletic department had opted to wrestle Division 1. So I definitely got that experience a little bit and can relate to that. So tell us about a memorable match. Is there a match that really sticks out in your mind and is something you’ll always remember? Whether it was a win or a loss, but a real memorable match for you.

Hankel: I’ll give you a couple. I think I’ll give you one where I just got demolished and I was surprised myself. When I went to college, I remember thinking . . . I was from a rural part of Washington. I didn’t know anything and I thought, “I’m definitely going to get my head ripped off when I go to college.” The thing about going to the small Division 1 school is that you can get on varsity right away. They were rebuilding the program. They had this million dollar endowment they just got so it was able to be Division 1 and there was a few spots open in the middle of the line-up.

So I basically knew that I’d go right in the mix. If you go to Iowa or wherever else, you’re going to work your way for a year to maybe on that fourth or fifth year, get on varsity. So I was really excited about this and it was one of the reasons I went there but at the same time, I was terrified. I remembered going for I think a Lock Haven’s tournament at the beginning of the year. What was it called?

Jim: [Inaudible 00:08:18]

Hankel: Yeah, that’s right. I wanted to sit in that class because that’s what it’s called in Washington. And I wrestled this kid from [inaudible 00:08:23], he was like a senior and just looked like one of these guys, he had like a compressor to create perfect wrestling adult, Terminator-looking wrestler. He looked like he was a descendent of a Kennedy. He looked like he was 45, butchin’. Anyway, demolished me and that’s when I realized that’s what college wrestling is about.

It’s much rougher, much more intense. Most high school stage, you can’t really slam the guys on the mat, for example. College, there’s much more leeway so I remembered just getting crushed. But at the same time, getting this kind of cool feeling that, “OK, I just had my first real college wrestling match.” So that was one. There’s always a couple where you kind of surprise yourself. You lose to somebody, you come back at the end of the year and you beat them. I think that’s what’s great about wrestling. You can lose to people individually at the beginning of the year, work on things, come back and you’ll probably see them a few more times depending on where they’re at.

You can see that growth in your by how you wrestle them and come back to win some of those matches.

Jim: Sure. So take us from there to here. You were a college wrestler, you were in Franklin & Marshall, to now where you’ve written a book. You’ve got this amazing platform. You’re doing live events. And you’re helping people across the planet. Tell us about the in-between, how you got from there to here.

Hankel: It’s never a straight line. I tried to make it as straight as possible but one thing you learn from wrestling is that you’re going to fail a lot and people, they get the most comfortable with failure, uncertainty and really the most comfortable with pain. Uncertainty is paint. It’s like when you’re in a tough practice, there’s the uncertainty of, “Am I going to pass out or lose or just get exhausted,” and you’re constantly fighting against that to be able to push yourself further past what you think your end-point is because you can always go more.

So I think there was a lot of pain and failure in between. My last year of college, I blew my knee out at the Midland tournament in my senior year. And then I tried to come back when they said my wrestling career was over. So I opted not to get surgery and finished out the season with the knee and just tried to build up the muscles around it as much as possible. But I clearly wasn’t the same person. So I think to have to deal with things like that, it gives you a different kind of fortitude but it also shows you a) you never know when things will be over, and b) you have nothing to lose, ever.

The more you learn that and kind of hold on to that, it helps you put yourself out there over and over again. So instead of feeling intimidated and backing down, you feel intimidated and push forward anyway. You fail, you learn and you eventually succeed. So what happened for me after my knee blew out is I went to graduate school. I got my doctorate. That was a great growing experience but a lot of failure there too. It was a very difficult program at a difficult time, getting through it.

Jim: Where’d you go and what’d you get your doctorate in?

Hankel: University of Iowa which was cool, my freshman year at University of Iowa – freshman in terms of graduate school – was the year that Gable came back as assistant coach with Brands. So the place was on fire with this kind of wrestling buzz and it was nothing like going to a Hawkeye center there with 17,000 people and they were wrestling Stanford and some of these other people that were hot at the time. It was when what’s his face was at Northern Iowa.

Jim: Oh, Cael Sanderson. He was in Iowa State.

Hankel: Right, right. So we had the big duels there. My freshman year was Iowa State and Cael Sanderson versus Brands and Dan Gable. It was just insane. I mean, just amazing. One of the most amazing wrestling matches I’ve ever been to. That Hawkeye center is really cool. [Crosstalk 00:12:45]. It was amazing. And the graduate campus there is literally a hundred yards from the Hawkeye center. So couldn’t have been better in terms of that. So yeah, I went there and I studied anatomy and cell biology, getting a PhD, let’s just say again, like an undergrad, I was [inaudible 00:13:10] on the outside.

As an undergrad, I was with these trust fund babies and wrestlers. Here, it was a bunch of elite scientists who have done nothing but that. and then just this kind of jock who slipped the cracks. So it was a great learning experience for me. It helped me learn how to adapt in different things. Most importantly, it’s taught me value of being yourself in any situation. I think a lot of times, we get this pressure to conform to where we’re around and to kind of be a product of our environment.

But no matter what you want to do, some of the things we talked about, if you want to go out and build a platform, start your own business or make any sort of change for yourself, you have to learn to a) be much more self-reliant and b) you got to make your environment a product of you instead. So those are the lessons that I’ve learned and it’s kind of what I’ve been able to carry with me.

Jim: Yeah, OK. So tell me about that. You’ve taken these great lessons from the sport and I think a lot of wrestlers, we have this. We get these lessons from the sport, but a lot of people don’t apply them directly to their life. Almost compartmentalize that part of their psyche and their toughness and their discipline and the education that they received on the wrestling mat. They compartmentalize that from the rest of their life, their work life, their relationships and everything else they do. How do you take those lessons and directly apply them to what you’re doing today and use those to be more successful?

Hankel: I’m glad you brought that up because I would agree, I think that’s one of a two-part problem that people who have these skills and they’re successful in wrestling, they think that those skills only apply to wrestling. The first step is self-awareness. If you have the skillset in one area of your life, you can apply to other areas of your life. So that’s one problem. But I should also say a part of that though, you can’t always apply in the exact same way. I know a lot of wrestlers out there, let’s say they were brawlers or they were very persistent people and they kept hammering against the wall or a person, literally when they wrestle to win.

And they will try to do that in other areas of their life, but they won’t get anywhere. If they’re just like a fly running into a window, just banging their heads over and over and they’re never going to [inaudible 00:15:23]. So I think at the same time, it’s not just about applying the same skillsets, it’s about applying those skillsets in a different way. Maybe make it a two millimeter adjustment that’s going to make all the difference in the world on how you can get ahead. So there’s a lot of wrestlers out there who are trying to do their own thing, especially in business or whatever else but they just fall flat because they just keep doing the same thing over and over. It’s not work and try harder. It’s not trying harder, that’s not the answer. It’s try it in a different way, attack it in a different angle. Be creative.

So that’s one half. And there’s also this group of wrestlers – and you see this all the time. There’s the wrestlers who get done wrestling and they stay in shape, they take care of themselves because they wrestle and they may have cut weight and whatever else. They know how to handle their body themselves and take care of themselves. There’s other wrestlers who cut weight in wrestling and they just let themselves go. They’re completely out of shape, don’t do anything, they walk around the mat, they’re fat, out of shape, whatever.

So I think that’s another thing too. The funny thing is a lot of the great wrestlers – not the greatest but a lot of really good wrestlers – do this. Partly it’s because they rest on their laurels. They think that they were great in wrestling in college and high school and that’s all they can talk about for the rest of their lives. Never pushed themselves to do anything else.

Jim: Yeah, transfer those skills. I agree, you see this in a lot of former athletes, especially individual sports, you know. But wrestling in particular, you ask a wrestler to run through that wall and he’s going to say, “All right, you want me to do the head first or the shoulder first?” instead of finding a smarter, better way to do it. And we are notorious for our training, our overtraining really, especially in college wrestling. You see it even in high school wrestling and at every level.

We just train so hard but we don’t pause. We don’t stop and evaluate, “Is there a better way to do this? Should I attack it from a different angle or perspective?” I had Gene Zannetti from Wrestling Mindset on here recently and he talked a lot about that. His sort of take is more along the lines . . . we talked of wrestling being 60% or 70% or 80% mental, depending who you talk to. But how much time do we spend actually doing mental training? It’s like none, really. So it’s a matter of stopping and evaluating the best way to go about things.

That was episode #11, if anybody wants to refer back to that episode, with Gene Zannetti from Wrestling Mindset, some great takeaways there too. All right Isiah, let’s talk a little bit about that. On your website, you talked about . . . let’s try to extrapolate some of these lessons from wrestling into the real world. You talk about Black Hole Focus and that’s the name of your book. So tell us about the book, but also tell us about how we develop a black hole focus. I think as wrestlers, a lot of times, you have to have that black hole focus. Especially on the mat, you just have this deep focus and everything else is blocked out. How do you develop that into the real world? So tell us about the book and about the concept.

Hankel: I think the simplest way to explain the concept is it’s much more effective to be pull forward by a very strong vision than it is to push yourself forward by what I call trickle forward goal-setting. A lot of us have been taught to make daily and weekly goals which I think is important but it’s much more effective to start at the ending and work backwards, kind of trickle forward. So you can start where you want to end up with the lifestyle you want to have.

There’s a lot of sports psychologists that are talking about this now and it’s showing to be very effective, scientifically as well where if you want to achieve a state championship, a NCAA championship, focus on the actual end-point. The very, very end-point is what are you going to do the next day? What is it going to feel like when you achieve that moment? Focusing on those feelings and actions is much more important than the title of being a champion or if related to business, it’s more important to think about what you’ll be doing on a daily basis. Starting a new career than just focusing on a job title or a salary. So make sure you’re starting at the right end-point and work backwards from there. That’s going to create some big outcomes that are going to excite you.

So you know where you’re headed in the distance. You know what that black hole is, that mountain peak is, whatever metaphor you want to use. Then you work backwards and you create some short-term benchmarks, three to nine-month benchmarks and it’ll guide you forward. These things act more like a north star rather than one step ahead of you. So there’s people who just look down at their feet, where they’re going to step next and there’s people who are looking far off in the distance.

Look backwards and I think that’s the key and the thing that really separates from the most successful people from those that are just average or mediocre in level.

Jim: Yeah. Stephen Covey, the author of 7 Habits of Highly Successful People was famous for saying “Start with the end in mind,” and that is so important. If you can do that, then anything, whether it’s a meeting at work or whether it’s a huge life goal or a relationship or a workout, anything from big to small, it’s just such an important concept. So another thing on your website I see is “Live like a lion.” Talk about that.

Hankel: It comes from an old Italian proverb that says “It’s better to live on day as a lion than a hundred years as a sheep.” The reason I like it is because it came to me at the perfect time in my life. It was my last year of graduate school and I was in a really stressful situation where I was trying to get my doctorate and get out. I was working with a very difficult mentor who kind of had the key to my future. Finishing up a PhD in between all this stuff, it’s a really stressful time. I ended up being diagnosed with a type of chronic kidney condition brought about by the stress. It was kind of a wake up moment for me in terms of really evaluating whre I was and what I wanted to do, and was I just chasing other people’s goals or was I setting my own path? Was I following the people around me and trying to meet other peoples’ expectations or was I relying on myself, my own vision and was I betting on myself? I didn’t really like the answers of what I came up with.

So I thought about this over and over again. I grew up working on a sheep farm and stuff so I drew this parallel of I basically have been living my life like a sheep. I’ve been following these career tracks that people laid out for me. I’ve been doing what other people want me to do and trying to meet their expectations instead of going out on my own because I was afraid. This quote, “Better live one day as a lion than a hundred years as a sheep,” it really means if you can wake up and live your ultimate lifestyle the way that you always wanted to live, have every experience, every feeling, do and have everything you ever wanted, what would that be like and how much better would that be than tip-toeing through your life [inaudible 00:22:38], even if you lived for a hundred years or more?

And the answer is I would rather be a [inaudible 00:22:52].

Jim: Yeah, that’s really powerful. I think we all go through those. There are certain times in life where we all go through a struggle but if you gain perspective from that, you obviously gained a lot of value from a challenging time in your life so I appreciate you sharing that. So I want to ask you a persona thing about you, Isiah. You’re obviously a successful person. You’ve done some really big things. You’re a big thinker. You take massive action. What’s one thing that you do on a regular basis? One habit that most people aren’t willing to do?

For example, I like to use this example of Kyle Dake who’s a four-time NCAA champion, first time ever for someone to do that in four different weight classes. And he did something that most people aren’t willing to do. He wrote his goals down every morning and every night. Do you have any habits, maybe not as extreme as that or maybe more extreme, I don’t know. But any habits you do on a regular basis that has helped you become successful?

Hankel: The one thing that I do that is the most important is I’m very careful to protect my mental energy. A lot of people say they want to accomplish big things but they waste all their energy on useless activities, meaningless drama, whatever it might be, people who shouldn’t be in your life, and they just take away all your energy. Most people think, especially wrestlers, “Well, it doesn’t matter how much energy I have.” We’re used to working on low levels of energy when we haven’t been eating or whatever else.

They think, “How much time do I have? I have three full periods,” and a lot of people think “I have a full 80 years.” But you shouldn’t think of things in time because time’s not your most valuable resource. Energy is. So you shouldn’t be thinking “How can I get more hours in a day?” You should be thinking, “How can I have so much energy that I can accomplish in five minutes what somebody else would accomplish in an hour?” Or “I can accomplish a thousand things within an hour that somebody else would take all day or all week to do.”

The only way to do that is to protect your mental energy [inaudible 00:24:53] works, how it rises and falls. Studies show that most people have three to five hours of peak mental energy per day. Not even the most peak but actual good mental energy. So every single day, you have three to five hours to get stuff done, that’s it. In terms of your alternate peak energy levels go, it comes at 10 level highest peak energy, it’ll be 90 minutes to 120 minutes a day.

This kind of range is in the early to late morning for most people. So one thing I did very early on was I started mapping out on a scale of one to ten. Every hour, I’d ask myself where am I at in terms of my mental energy. I did this for a few weeks until I figured out my mental energy kind of peaks from 9am to 12pm. So I called that prime time and I block it out from the day. Nothing goes into that time, except for the most critical creation, mission-oriented task. Management and connection tasks, you do in the afternoon or later. But that time is [inaudible 00:25:54].

And I think just structuring your day around this time and being really ruthless with the crap you let into your life, because people say, “I want to get a better network” or “I want to have more time or energy to do that.” You can’t unless you get rid of the negative people or people with smaller goals that are holding you back. It might sound a little bit ruthless and you know this from wrestling. If you keep wrestling the crappiest people in the room, [inaudible 00:26:24] wrestler. But if you step up and wrestle with the All-Americans in the room or you wrestle with the State Champions in the room, you’re going to get at their level very, very quickly.

So do the average of the five people you’re on the most and the unspoken kind of thing is that if you’re around crappy people, they’re draining your energy levels and you’re never going to get anything done.

Jim: Yeah man, you said some things that I think resonates so well. They certainly resonate very well with me and the listeners as well. One thing I want to point out that you said is you stopped. People who have listened to some of these other episodes have heard me say this before about how important it is to pause, to get off the hamster wheel of life and evaluate what’s working and what’s not working because a lot of people just drift through their day. They drift through their life and they do the same thing that they did yesterday and they’re going to do the same thing tomorrow because that’s just what they’ve done.

They don’t stop to evaluate like you did, what’s your most productive time of the day. It’s from 9 to 12. So now you take action, significant action. You actually blocked it off so no one can interrupt it because it’s important to you. You have long term goals and vision for your life. You know where you want to be down the road and this is an action that’s required for you to do that. So how many people do I know that actually do something like that? Not very many.

But the most successful people that I know, they do things that are different, right? There’s a guy, Bob Rotella. He’s a world-renowned sports psychologist. Lives actually in Charlottesville, Virginia where I live. Professional athletes fly in from all over the world, mostly golfers. But he says “If you want to be exceptional, you can’t do what everybody else does.” How simple and profound that is. If you want to be exceptional, you can’t do what everybody else does.

So if you do the same thing as the guy next to you, guess what? You’re going to get probably similar results, that’s your standard. If the guy next to you is ultra-successful, guess what? You’re going to be pretty successful. If the guy next to you is not, do something different. And then you talked about getting around people with bigger goals and away from people with smaller goals. One of the most powerful things that I’ve done is I’ve formed this mastermind group and I put myself around the type of people that I want to be around. That are going to raise my standard.

And when you’re around those types of people, it drives you forward. It can’t help but to drive you forward. When you are willing to take those kinds of actions, your life changes. So Isiah, thanks for sharing that. That’s really, really great stuff. To the listeners sitting there, they’re working out or they’re on their drive home from work or wherever they’re driving to, wherever they’re listening to this, what’s one thing that they can do within the next 24 hours? What’s one thing that you can suggest, one action that you can take today to help them get closer to their goals?

Hankel: I would say go on a relationship fast. Identify those people that drain your energy. The negative people you’re around and you keep around just because you know them a long time, they’re friends, family or whatever. But every time you’re around, then you’re really negative, they get you to compromise on your goals or they have small goals themselves, these kind of people, you got to stand up and say nothing directed to them, but you should back away for a few days or weeks.

Then again, it might sound harsh but do you want to go your whole life not accomplishing your goals because you’re constantly drained and you’re not around the right people? Or do you want to take a moment to revaluate? Like you said about the hamster wheel, step away, shake your life up a little bit, back away from those stale relationships, the ones that are a negative influence on you. The ones that drain you and see what happens to your life. In most cases, things will open up to you. You’ll start seeing things you never saw before. You’ll feel a sense of relief, like a weighted vest has been taken off of you.

So I think that’s the number one and first most important thing that you can do. and then follow it up with getting some fresh relationships with people who are better than you, smarter than you, more successful than you, happier than you. If you’re the smartest, best, most successful person in the room, you’re in the wrong room.

Jim: Yeah, when you surround yourself with this kind of people, it changes your standards. I want to address what you said. It sounds harsh, maybe that negative person is a relative or a close friend or a close co-worker or a colleague. Sure it might sound harsh, but if cutting them out or minimizing their impact on your life is going to help you reach your goals, that’s not selfish. If you’re achieving your goals, if you set your goals right, you’re going to do positive things in the world. Whether it’s impacting other people or being a better husband or wife or employee. Maybe you’re going to make more money and better provide for your children’s education. So you got to maximize your life and your impact on the world.

That’s a positive thing. To do positive things, sometimes you have to make these tough decisions. But I think I want to put that into perspective for the listeners because it’s a really powerful way to fast-forward your life and help you towards your goals. You got a book or some kind of resource that you can recommend that has changed your life the most that has a big impact on you?

Hankel: Yeah, there’s quite a few. Usually ones that had helped change your mindset from one thing to another. I’ll tell you, there’s one book and I wish I could say it’s about wrestling but it’s actually about rowing. People that do crew or row in college, they do train hard and there is a great book called [inaudible 00:32:18]. It’s just a great story of someone who dreamed of becoming and Olympic gold medallist and trained their balls off. Like it’s amazing what they map out in that story and they really get into the mindset of what it takes to achieve something like that and it makes it really applicable to any other part of your lives.

Another book that I like is I really like history and there’s another book called The 33 Strategies of War. They dig into everything from all the different wars or battles that have happened throughout history and how you learn from them and how apply these deep principals to your life, especially in terms of competing, and not so much about competing with other people but competing with yourself to be better. And these principals are important. One thing you’ll notice is that processes change a lot. A lot of people get stuck on processes, like “What can I do to make my business successful on Facebook by having the best Facebook post?” They don’t think about the principles that should be driving them, what are their actual core messages.

So I like this book because it really focuses on timeless principals. It’ll help you get ahead and achieve your goals, no matter what they are.

Jim: Great, those are two books I had not heard yet or have not recommended yet. So great, I’ll add those to the list. So let me finish with this question, Isiah. If you could give your 20 year old self one piece of advice, if you’re sitting across the table from yourself when you were 20 years old, what one piece of advice you would give yourself?

Hankel: Start a business now. That’s what I would say. Figure out something that you love to do and go make that happen for yourself. It’s very easy to get caught up in other peoples’ expectations of what makes you successful and when we’re growing up, a lot of people think it has to do with academic success or with getting a bigtime job or whatever it might be. But looking to what you love to do and finding a way to turn that into a business, whether it’s a non-profit or a club or a platform or whatever, I would tell myself to start doing that as soon as possible because when you’re able to create something on your own and build it and rally people around it, there’s no better feeling in the world.

Jim: I definitely encourage people to visit your website and check you out because you got a lot of great content on your website, on your blog. You’ve got free downloads, I think it’s two chapters of your book that people can download for free at your website. Tell people where they can find you, follow you, interact with you or buy your stuff, etc.

Hankel: So the best place would just be isiahhankel.com. And then go over to my Facebook page, we do a lot of free, different e-books and download from there too.

Jim: I recommend everybody to check this out. I will include the link in the shownotes which is basically just posted on my blog as well as on iTunes. I’ll hyperlink some of the stuff there but great stuff Isiah, I appreciate you making time. I know the listener got a lot of out of this and I look forward to connecting with you again.

Hankel: Thanks for having me on, Jim.

Jim: Great nuggets from Isiah there. I particularly like how he’s blocked off the productive time of his day so that no one else can interrupt him. He’s essentially saying no to anyone and everyone so he can utilize his energy to propel him through his day and through his life. Once you’re clear on exactly what you want and how to get it, you’re going to find it.

It’s just a lot more easy. You feel a lot more comfortable with saying ‘No’ to people and that’s essentially what he’s doing. He’s saying ‘no’ so he can say ‘yes’ to the life he wants to create. If you have a family, you’re providing for your family the best that you can and being the most focused so you can get home on time or make more money, provide more for them. So saying no to certain things is really saying yes to toehr things.

So I do want to share this other thing that I’ve been working on and I’m really excited about. It’s probably coming out in a couple of weeks. That’s my goal, to get the thing released in a couple of weeks. I’m really excited about it. So keep an eye out, your email or your inbox. If you’re not subscribed already, go to jimharshaw.net/14. That’ll get you subscribed to my list. That’s jimharshaw.net/14. You can download the action plan for this show. I always create that action plan but I’ll also be announcing this to my email list here in a couple of weeks. So keep an eye out for that coming in a couple of weeks.

Get to jimharshaw.net/14 and download that action plan that I create for all my shows. If you do that, you can actually get the action plans for all the other shows as well. That’ll get you subscribed and give you a link to access everything there. If you’ve not left a review on iTunes yet, please take a minute to do so. If you have, I appreciate it. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Don’t forget to visit jimharshaw.net/learn to check out how you can use online learning to develop a new skill and even get a free trial to Lynda.co m.

One more thing. I want you to imagine if the entire wrestling community had a vehicle through which we could all voice our opinion. All 11 million strong of us who are former wrestlers. I’ve talked about the National Registry for wrestling which is basically just an email list. You add your name to it and that’s it. We’re using that to leverage to the larger networks and media outlets and letting them know we have a major, major audience out here that want to tune into wrestling. That’s NR4W.com. But also I want to introduce you to IFW which is the International Fraternity of Wrestlers in which I’m a paid member.

The co-responsibility is to help increase wrestling’s relevance to society while fulfilling its responsibilities to its members, investors and associates. Here’s how it works. You buy your membership and you automatically get a $25 restaurant gift card handed to you. Then you get discounts at tonnes of different places. So if your wife’s birthday is coming up, get a discount at 1-800-FLOWERS. If you’re changing your viper blades on your car, get a discount at Advanced Autoparts. You got to ship a package? Get a discount at the UPS stores. You get the picture.

There’s tonnes of discounts, more than it pays for itself. If someone told you if you give them $50, they’ll give you $100 back, would you do it? Of course you would, it’s a no-brainer. If the financial benefit is not enough, the mission for IFW is to reconnect all former wrestlers for the benefit of the sport. Imagine just a small percentage of the 11 million former wrestler for part of the single membership organization. Imagine what we can get done with the sport.

So I hope it’s a pretty easy decision for you, visit ifwrestlers.org today and that’s it. That’s all for today. Until next time, attack the day with intensity and focus and outwork everyone because you can’t get pinned when you’re on top.