S11E06: The power of the 'Alter Ego', with Todd Herman

An episode of The Impact Multiplier CEO Podcast

S11E06: The power of the ‘Alter Ego’, with Todd Herman

In this episode, we continue our "CEO Rolodex" season as Richard Medcalf speaks with Todd Herman, creator of the 90 Day Year leadership programme, author of the WSJ bestselling book ‘The Alter Ego Effect: The Power of Secret Identities to Transform Your Life’, and recipient of Inc. 500’s Fastest Growing Companies Award.

In this conversation, you’ll learn:

  • What an 'alter ego' is, and how it can transform performance in any area of life
  • The most powerful advice Todd received, and how it catapulted his career from a very early age
  • How Todd went from unknown 20-something to working with some of the top names in psychology and sport, going on to build the biggest mental game coaching business in the world
  • The surprisingly simple power of a "totem", and how to use it to improve your performance almost instantly

"Tuck yourself under the wing of the very best."

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Transcript

Todd Herman
I did it because I used an alter ego when I played sports. His name was Geronimo. And then when I got into business, I was so into hear about how young I looked and my inexperience that it was preventing me from going out and actually launching this business. I was good at coaching. I was already good at that craft. But as we know an entrepreneurship or being a CEO, there's so many hats that you wear And all it takes is the insecurity of putting on one of those hats that can crumble something. So I built super Richard who was the advocate for Todd's stuff. He was the promoter. He was the salesperson.

Richard Medcalf
Welcome to the Impact Multiplier CEO Podcast. I'm Richard Medcalf, founder of Xquadrant. And my mission is to help the world's top CEOs and entrepreneurs shift from incremental to exponential progress and create a huge positive impact on our world. Now that requires you to reinvent yourself and transform your business. So if you're ready to play a bigger game than ever before, I invite you to join us and become an impact multiplier, CEO.

Todd Herman
Hi, Todd, and welcome to the show. Richard, it's great to be here. And, unfortunately, I'm gonna sound like I'm the not wiser of the 2 here because you have the luxury of that British accent. So I always have to place to be able to submit it.

Richard Medcalf
Well, for me, it's normal. Right? So I'll say British accent is more like a Hollywood villain in in my books or even if you're an alien, you're a British alien. But, actually, there is another advantage that I found out in one of your books. about or your book, the alter ego effect. The actually, the name Richard means that I'm incredibly intelligent. Right?

Todd Herman
You are incredibly intelligent. So so to the listener, my first name is actually Richard, but and don't ever do this to your kids if you're young enough not have kids yet, but giving your kid a first name that you don't intend on calling them because they always wanted to call me Todd, but it is I mean, I've lived in 7 countries around the world. And when you're immigrating into other countries, it is a pain in the butt when you've got a lot of documentation from your original country that says top Herman. or Richard Todd Herman or Richard T Herman or r Todd Herman, which is what I had growing up. They start asking you, like, okay. Well, which which of these people are you? and they started investigating you a lot more. So anyways, yes. Super Richard was my alter ego that I built out for myself when I started a business.

Richard Medcalf
Yeah. We'll get into this. Yeah. I I didn't realize the name was actually Richard because I did remember that you had this alter ego of Richard, right, which was the intelligent kind of or alter ego, we we should we can perhaps get into. On that point, though, of don't give your kid the the usual username as their second name, It's fascinated fascinating. My my father remarried when my mother died, and that's bunch of kids from from from her marriage. And we went to the wedding of one of the kids just last last year. What we didn't realize was the well, since university, he's used his first name, not the second name, which the family call him because So he had a family traditional family name that was given to him. When his father died, he said, why would you have my dad's name? Because it's my name as well. I wanna use it. he went to university, adopted this name. So we all knew him as Chris. We went to this wedding or this this wedding party, you know, and, like, half congregated half the people, you know, miss John. And we're like, who's John? Until we realized it was the same person, so it does get confusing. Anyway, let's get on to let's get this dive into the alternate ego. We've been teasing the listener probably at this point by what what's all this stuff about Super Richard? So I know you're doing multitude of different things. You're an entrepreneur. In your own right, you've got various courses program, software applications. You've written a book. Right? As well. And I know you coach very high end executives and athletes and and performers. So tell tell us about, like, within that mix, The alter ego effect, it sounds like a bit weird. And and, you know, where does that fit in the mix? And and, you know, why did you make the effort of writing the whole book on that?

Todd Herman
Yeah. It's one of these unconventional ideas that is actually the most conventional way in many ways to help someone transform. And so To go way back, I had started in 1997, a peak performance in Medcalf game coaching company. I was very young at the time. I was only twenty one. but I was a college football player. I was a nationally ranked talented player. I was a good athlete despite I'm not I'm not physically gifted. I'm not six foot 4 and £245 of solid muscle or something like that, but my strength was more my mental game and my attitude. And when I got done playing, I started, you know, volunteering coaching like anyone who loves sports would wanna go and do, and I started teaching the kids kind of more my process that I would get into to play in kind of a flow state in a game. And kids started getting great results, and parents started asking me if I could mentor, so I started this business. So I'm a very big believer in mentorship and apprenticeship. I my entire career is standing on the shoulders of people that were the best at their craft. In fact, when I was leaving, I grew up on a big farm and ranch in Canada originally. And when I was leaving the farm and ranch, my parents knew that I wasn't gonna be coming back and taking over anything because I had older brothers who far more equipped at doing that. And they just said, like, listen. Hopefully, we prepared yourself or prepared you for for life with, you know, character traits and integrity traits and and whatnot. But we're probably not gonna be able to help you out much with whatever your career is. So just promise us that whatever you go and do, try and find who's the best at it and tuck yourself under their wing. And one of the big reasons why they said that was because I had such a big ego as a kid, not in a really toxic way, but it was just I was a lot of times, ignorantly overly confident, which is a very helpful thing if you're an entrepreneur is, like, it's actually quite helpful that you don't know. enough of what's gonna be in front of you. Yeah. Blind ignorance is the best strategy. Yeah. Oh, man. Especially as an entrepreneur when you're just starting out or when you're trying to pursue things because you're like, man, if I knew all the stuff I had to go through, I probably would not have done it. So they had given me just one of the best pieces of advice that's out there. And so I say I'm standing on the shoulders of others because I started reaching out to people who had careers that were now at their probably xenith or at their end, and I would reach out and say, listen. Like, I've got this fledgling little mental game coaching company. You're like the giant of the industry this guy was Harvey Dorfman. He wrote literally the bible of the industry called coaching the mental game and managed to kinda tuck my way into spending 33 days with a Humana's home in North Carolina during the base during the Major League Baseball off season. Why don't you just sit down on that? It's it's this is the main.

Richard Medcalf
How did you do that? mean, Matt, you know, he's he's there like that. I mean, how did you, you know, manage to get here on his radar in that way? So right now, I'm doing a terrible job of answering your very first question, which the alternate, but all of this sort of backstory.

Todd Herman
Okay. So how did I do it? I did it by really, it was born out frustration, and I think most things for a lot of us are born out of frustration. So here I was. I was about two and a half years into the mental game business. I was doing all this research in psychology books, kinesiology books. Like, I was looking at all the different disciplines around human performance I wasn't just sticking to psychology, but the psychology world really frustrated me because I found that as a practitioner that's on the field with people every day trying to help them perform and get better and move through challenges and issues, I found a lot of other stuff very theoretical, and it just didn't it broke under the weight of application. So I was kinda frustrated, and then I found Harvey's book. And I was like, oh, wow. Here's someone who speaks in a plain speaking language. gives it to you straight, and it just really resonated with me. So I just reached out and and just was this was December of 2000 and or, sorry, 1999. And I said, hey, Harvey. We've never had the pleasure of meeting before, but I've been launching a peak performance in mental game coaching company for the last couple of years. and I found your book, and it's the only one that resonates with me. And I'm sure you have another book you would like to write, and I'd like to just volunteer to come in and help you out. take up your administration or whatever.

Richard Medcalf
It was it was a bit of a a long voicemail accompanied by email, which was pretty new at the time even. to reach out to someone with. So, anyways, he called me back 2 days later. So it's a real gift. I mean, that's really the the the answer is, yeah, you you entered to his service. He said, what can I do to serve you? Absolutely.

Todd Herman
Yeah. Absolutely.

Richard Medcalf
Great. So we we can just put the brackets around that and go back to the to the question. But I did just glooping it because Yeah. No. So he he called me back and yeah.

Todd Herman
So he called me back and he was like, okay, kid. Like, you don't wanna live with me, do you? That's where literally his first words. And I said, no. I don't live with you. I've got an close to you, but I can stay with them, which was a complete lie. I ended up staying at a motel 6 for $28.50 sing since $28.50 a night, and I maxed out my credit card doing it because I wasn't really making that much money. I was busy, but I wasn't charging a lot of money. So I spend that 33 days with Harvey. He's working with the best athletes in the world. I get to see how the best mental game guy's working with the best athletes. It was a complete master class. It would have taken me 15 years to learn that. And afterward, Harvey started funneling me pro athlete clients. So that's really how I broke into the pro athlete ranks was through Harvey, which gets to the alter ego thing. So as I'm now working with better and better quality athletes, this common thread was kind of revealing itself, and it would come in the form of, you know, you saying to me, you don't you don't talk. because, again, this is very private coaching. This is me between the 6 inches of people's ears that are operating at the highest level, and it would say, you know, tell, like, when I go on the field, I actually have a persona that I go or I have this alter ego or I have this kind of identity that I have that I step into. And when I would look at the data, was just the way that one person said it. I was like, wait a second. A bunch of dominoes toppled in my head. I'm like, this is an actual thing. It's not just like a gimmick that someone's using. I think this is actual device. Like, it's a tool. And I did it because I used an alter ego when I played sports. His name was Geronimo. And then when I got into business, I was so insecure about how young I looked and my inexperience that it was preventing me from going out and actually launching this business. I was good at coaching. I was already good at that craft. But as we know, an entrepreneurship or being a CEO, there's so many hats that you wear And all it takes is the insecurity of putting on one of those hats that can crumble something. So I built super Richard who was the advocate for Todd's stuff. He was the promoter. He was the salesperson. that's what helped me move through my insecurities. So I started interviewing all my clients and saying, hey. Well, how do you get into the alter ego? Like, what's your process? And I started to build up this method and I became as the alter ego guy. And very early in that process, I I met Kobe Bryant, who got introduced to me through Harvey. when Kobe was going through a really trying experience. And so I built out the black mamba with Kobe Bryant, and That was, as you could say, a little bit of history because a few people found out about that. My name sort of skyrocketed in the sports world. And I built the largest mental game coaching company in the world, and I sold it to Real Madrid. And so Altarigos are this device Cicero named it. He said it's the other eye or trusted friend within. He's the first person that actually coined the term alter ego back in 44 BC, and that's been my experience is You and I both know how important it is and anyone listening to have great peers and friends and mentors and, you know, allies around you. But that very intimate place between the 6 inch people's ears, people have sort of left it as an undiscovered country for themselves. And so I help people build their allies within themselves to help them move through life with a lot more grace maybe some more playfulness, but at the exact same time, always improving their performance.

Richard Medcalf
Yeah. Yeah. It's beautiful. So So get a bit practical when you wanna play a bigger game when you've probably been through it yourself, up leveling yourself, and what do you wanna be be up to in the world. you know, do would you still draw on that yourself? And, like so just thinking practically for for listener, like, you know, practically, what could how can they start to use this this idea, at the beginning, you know, beginner stages, how do they talk to, like, get some value out of out of this idea of having an alter ego?

Todd Herman
The great thing about it is everyone that's listening has already played with this idea, so it's already a known entity within you. Just recognize that because we, as kids, will always use this as a method to be playful, and it's because at the at our young ages, there is no sense of myself until about the age of eight when some development starts to happen in the frontal lobe area of the brain is only is the time when people start to develop this idea of me my stuff, my identity, who I am. And I can see it right now because I've got 3 little kids that are 6, 8, and 10, and I've seen that metamorphosis from all of them. And so you've already played with this idea. You know? Being your favorite superhero, being your favorite. you know, footballer on the field when you wanna go and score the goal against your brother, sister, you know, buddies. So you already played with the idea. So the practical side of this is it's always in the context of a role that you have in life. You don't build an alter ego for your entire life because that's actually a trap. It's actually one of the things that would cause the highest rates of anxiety, depression, or mental health disorders. If you see yourself as having one identity, whether you use an alter ego or not, has nothing to do with alter If you see yourself as having only one identity, you're actually grinding the gears up in your head. That's not an appropriate way of looking at life.

Richard Medcalf
One of the things I immediately rings a bell whenever a client, you know, says, you know, the thing about me is that I am and then make some declarative statement about who they are or what kind of person they are. immediately push back on that because that's, you know or when they say the truth of the situation is and they tell me something, it's obviously not the truth of the situation. Right? It's always their story that they're telling themselves. And so but when it's when you're playing it to yourself, I think you're right. It's really dangerous because you suddenly box yourself in -- Yep. -- almost as a matter of principle.

Todd Herman
It's self sealing logic. It's what it is. It's self sealing. And so and you just hit on one of the one of the reasons that this works so well is it's inviting you into a new story. That's what the alter ego encapsulates is a new story. And because we're meaning making machines, we are storytelling. We are narrative making machines. Most people just aren't very good at picking up a pen themselves and writing a new story. And because 70% of our brain is dedicated to the visual cortex, when someone says, oh, I'm trying to, like, you know, be my best self or I'm trying to grow into a better person. If you don't give yourself a really clear picture or a model of what that looks like, you're gonna have a very difficult time realizing it. just like let's just relate this back to projects. k? because we all understand that inside of businesses. If you tell your team, hey. I want our website redesigned. Go do that. Alright. Good luck with getting a good result from that. But if you say, hey. I love this website, specifically, I like the header area there. And then I like this body copy that they have right here, and then I like how they do their footer. on this website over here. So here's the 3 sources of inspiration. Can you create hours to look like that? The moment you give them the picture, so much more easier to execute and the likelihood that you get what you want is gone way up. Well, it works the same way with our own identities. So to go back to the question, how do we practically apply this? Think of a role or an area of your life where you have the most friction. could be the most frustration that you've got right now in your performance or the world that you're living in in that world is challenging or frustrating, or it's just not fun. you're avoiding things made. So that could be as the CEO or manager. It could be in sales or promotion. It could be, you know what? I wanna produce more content and build up more thought leadership for myself, but I'm not producing anything. Or it could be, you know what? I'm not the best mom or dad when I go home from work. I have a hard time switching it off, which speaking to, like, yPO people, EO people around the world. So, you know, CEOs, that's been typically a place where a lot of people will build an alter ego is actually as a dad or as a husband or a wife or a mom. So it's always in one role because then it's easy to find a source of inspiration for it. And then you take a look at, well, what are the traits that I want? what are the qualities and the attributes for what I would like to bring to that role in my life? And then question that goes along with it would be, well, is there anyone that already has that that you're inspired by, could be fictional characters, could be movie characters, could be superheroes, could be people from your past, could be animals. The sources of inspiration are unlimited, or you just invent it from scratch. So going back to Super Richard, So here I was. I was indecisive. I was not being very articulate with kind of explaining what what I did, and I was not confident at all at all. I was insecure. So I invited in a new ally which was the composite of Benjamin Franklin, Superman, and Joseph Campbell, 3 of my heroes. Specifically from Benjamin Franklin is his confidence. the man had 7 phenomenal careers in his lifetime. Like, no one was a better shape shifter, probably than Benjamin Franklin. And then you know, Superman's entire moniker is he's the man of action. So decisiveness, taking action, and doing something. And then Joseph Campbell was just so articulate explaining mythologies and storytelling through history and legends. I just I just really was inspired by him. So those became my 3 source codes of inspiration for who I was using as a model in my mind of what I was trying become. And then going to the the the final phase of this is we have a psychological phenomenon that goes inside inside of the human mind called enclothed cognition. And my entire businesses have been built on the back of I like finding real science to explain performance to people. Most people are doing things that run They're doing making things harder than they need to. So I like to grease the slide for people. So in closed cognition is that we as human beings, we attach stories and meanings to our artifacts and clothing. Now the crazy thing is, though, is when you put on those things you enclose your mind in the cognitive traits of whatever that story is. So if I got you to put on a doctor's coat or a lab coat, Here's what the studies will show. You will enclose yourself in the cognitive traits of being more methodical, detailed, careful, and sort of smart. So if you were doing an activity that involved the needs of those cognitive traits, you're gonna do them better naturally. It's gonna just naturally come out. There's no acting with it even. So when we're designing out the model alter ego or identity for someone. I wanna get people to find a uniform and artifact something they put on so you're referencing it. talking on the book, how I put on a pair of glasses. So I bought a pair of glasses long before wearing glasses was sort of a a fashion statement like it is now. even the idea of convince the optometrist to buy sell them to me because I need glasses. They were just, you know, clear lenses. There was nothing in them. But when I put them on, I was stepping into Super Richard, which was these glasses housed the cognitive traits and abilities of Benjamin Franklin, Superman, and Joseph Campbell, when I put those on, that's what I was becoming. And, again, we already do this naturally as human beings when people put on a uniform or a a Halloween costume, you start to act a bit differently. Well, that should be a signal to most people that that's maybe something that's natural within us And I'm just giving people an intentional model to do it that reveals the sides of you or the parts of you or brings out of you character traits and abilities that you actually want to help you win in that field. I hope you're enjoying this conversation.

Richard Medcalf
This is just a quick interlude to introduce you to 2 transformative programs that we run. The first is Rivendell, my exclusive group of top CEOs who are committed to transforming themselves, their businesses, and the world. It's an incredible peer group. and a deep coaching experience that will push you to new heights no matter how successful you've already been. The second is Impact Accelerator, a coaching program for executives who are ready to make a big leap forward in their own leadership. It's regularly described as life changing, and no other program provides such personal, strategic clarity, a measurable shift in stakeholder perceptions, and a world class leadership development environment. Find out about both of these programs. atxquadrant.com/services. Now back to the conversation.

Richard Medcalf
It's amazing, isn't it? Because we'd think that we were above such things. It feels a bit gimmicky, right, on one level. So do do would you would you still do that even even today? Do you do that? Yeah. Yeah. Absolutely. So I'll give you a good example.

Todd Herman
It's pinned on my on my Twitter handle, tod_herman. It's a post from a few years ago when I was on the NBC Today show. So my book is out now. It's a few months into it. It's gone viral in whatever ways. It's gone viral. And so I get on this, you know, one of the top morning shows in all of America. And I already done a bunch of Medcalf, and my wife had said to me, she's like, listen. Like, Your interviews have been great, but this kind of, like, really playful fun side of you hasn't been coming out in your interviews. And I was like, yeah. You're right. And And so I thought about because I'd always go on with a blazer and my button up shirt and, you know, pocket square and all that kind of stuff. And I'm like, you know what? Let's switch it up a bit. And so I went on with just a kind of a a knit golf shirt type of thing. And then I was like, well, who already embodies the kind of traits of someone who's, like, really fun and playful? because this daytime television, and I'm like, well, I really like the way that Ryan Reynolds and Hugh Jackman show up. like, their fun, their, like, even their body language and and everything. So I kind of I watched a few clips of theirs because this is actually how human beings naturally learn is by modeling other people. And so we think to your point, oh, well, that's below me or that's beneath me. And it's like, well, now you're fixed. You're you're really stuck. You're actually not accessing what I think is our real superpowers human beings, which is our creative imagination. You keep on flexing this same identity every single day thinking, well, that's me just like what you had said before when a CEO says, well, I am what you need to know about me is I am. And it's like, well, no. That's been a useful mechanism for you, but is it really you. And by the way, there's no such thing as a you because I can't put you under a microscope and find a you. There's no eunice in there. There's energy There's possibility. And so I like trying to break some of those frames for people. Anyway so my alter ego inspiration for that interview and subsequent interviews was Hugh Jackman and Ryan Reynolds. And immediately after that interview was done, 2 executive producers from the show came down to the set because there's a bit of a mix up with the teleprompter, but I carried it through and nailed all the points and stuff that came through and said, you've got a clean slate of invitations. You can come back whenever you want. That's that segment was brilliant. Thank you so much. That was a lot of fun. And I can anchor that to the fact that I just brought a different energy to that than I did some of the other interviews. So, absolutely, I It's not I don't wanna get stuck in thinking that, oh, I'm matured now, and now I'm a finished product of perfection. I'll never be that. Yeah. Oh, yeah. It's back to the toolbox.

Richard Medcalf
I am yeah, I have a it's basically the same thing. Although, I'd I'd I don't describe it as quite in your trigger terms, but it's pretty close, I think. I one of my favorite artists, you know, is Queen. Right? The rock band queen. And got me into, you know, electric guitar, I'm a total queen geek. Right? And my I've now managed to pass on to my kids, which is annoying my wife, but really pleasing me deeply. But I realized one of the things I love about Queen or and about Freddie Mercury is that he was able to embody his message and, like, communicate it to the back of the stadium and land it. And he can be as outrageous as he wanted to, but he owned it. And so I have this, you know, mental or this idea of, you know, releasing my inner Freddie Mercury. Right? Basically, the same thing. Right? So I'm just like, okay. Like, How am I gonna, like, land that message so that you absolutely hear it. You you know that I'm fully embodying it. And I want you know, and I'm I could be I can be ridiculous or do ridiculous things as a result because, well, I that's what you're doing to communicate a message. Right? It it's not about you, you know, or me, and is that gonna be silly or not? And I find that when I I harness that, that's definitely a side of me, which is a powerful crime.

Todd Herman
And so question for you then, Richard, because you've leaned into that more, how has that affected other areas or other roles in your life? Like, because you kinda lean into that kind of creative expression that's kinda because, I mean, Freddie Mercury, I mean, boy, you talk about a free someone who is free of expression or free to express themselves. So how has that then translated into other roles and areas of your life? Yeah.

Richard Medcalf
Well, I would say for a stop for a while, you know, it was, like, I didn't realize that you could bring them together. But now yeah. I mean, that's a tool, you know, which I use often, I I think. You know? I've just been experimenting with exactly what what you said. It's easy not to bring the playful side out of us off because we yeah. We're serious about what we wanna do, and we wanna make a difference. we're also working with high achievers who need to know that we've got some credentials and gravitas behind us. And yet, the thing I'm really in my range is is about playing with that. It's like, yeah. Well, you know, if you want my job with, you know, dead serious and you're running a multibillion dollar company, and I know that I can, you know, help rock your world. And I would be able to, like, be really stupid in we care about it. Right? Because, I mean, in service of breaking through pattern disruption, you know, like, trying to get people to think again. Right? But you have here to bring that that that to it. And I think that's, for me, that reconciling what people's what my friends said, Richard, why don't you bring this stuff? This kinda start is any part of you into this stuff that we see you doing over here.

Todd Herman
Nothing a bit of a journey from Frank. Yeah. I mean but that's been my experience with this, you know, playing helping to shape and form people's different senses of their cells is that nothing ever stays in, like, complete isolation within us. So the moment I become more playful, fun, creative, you know, whether it's gregarious or whatever as a media type personality, that because I'm drawing out those qualities. I'm drawing out those attributes, and I'm now seeing them be performed on the field of play, that feedback loop that gets closed when I see myself do that changes my interpretation of myself. It spends a range. Right? It spends rain. Yeah. And you're exactly. It's the range of it. And, actually, this is what Carl Young talked about. you know, if someone's not familiar with, you know, YoungE And Psychology, Carl Young came up with the concept of the 12 different archetypes. that human beings will sort of narratively live through. So one of my archetypes is that of a ruler archetype. And a ruler archetype is someone who, when you're in the like, positive energy of it. You want prosperity for really everyone in the land. You know? It's the king, the queen, the the the CEO, the whatever that wants they really want everyone to be prosperous. That's what a ruler's genuine want is. But on the shadow side of that, is when your ruler gets triggered, then it's like you're gonna try and control everything. So I'm mindful of that, but that's not everything that I am. There's also, on the other ends of that spectrum, is this someone who's called the realist or the every man or every woman. You know, think of them like the carpenter or the so, like, they're, you know, blue jeans and, you know, vinyl shirt kind of thing as an archetype. Well, what Carl Young talked about is you become a whole as a human being when you can unpack all of the different archetypes. And so that's why I say, like, you know, hearing your journey is when because that's kind of leaning into the magician because Freddie Mercury is more of the magician archetype or the gesture archetype in some way or the revolutionary archetype, it's gonna automatically just make you more whole. It's gonna free you more because you've got different traits to play with, which is gonna make you an even better coach and leader and mentor and adviser to other people. And it starts to invite those people because, again, like you had said, working with $1,000,000,000. I mean, I've done that. I've worked with multi billionaires, and they can get really stuck sometimes into a certain sense of who they are and what they need it be, and I like to go in there and crack that stuff open for them and kind of allow them to see different sides of themselves. which then only makes them a better influence or a better leader to other people. Yeah. Yeah. That's beautiful.

Richard Medcalf
Let's just quickly dig in a little bit deeper there. What yeah. Why do you do what you do? Right? We talked a bit a bit about this before we we we we started recording. You know? What's the what's the motivator for you at this point in your career? because you've done various things. Right? I mean, you sold your your successful sports coaching company to do other stuff.

Todd Herman
So why are you on this particular journey at this particular point in your life? Well, you would ask the question, like, why did I end up writing the book? Well, The reason I waited I was asked to write the book in 2004 shortly after I'd worked with Kobe. And, again, that was very private because the one of the things that scaled up my company was I was I never shared who I worked with. I also signed an NDA with all of my private professional clients because everyone wants something from them. And I was the first say, no. I'll never say that I'm working with you because I'm not gonna use your name. But if you could just in those private conversations, when you have a teammate or a friend that's struggling, give them my name. And so I built it entirely on the back of referability. And when you get to the highest levels of any industry, that's kind of where the decisions are made anyway. 2 CEOs talking while they're at the tennis club or they're at some sort of an event and they're struggling something to say, hey. You know what? You need to reach out to my guy, Richard. He's Medcalf is just he's got the stuff. That's how it happens. So I was asked, but I knew that Yeltarigo stuff was kind of my secret sauce. I didn't release 6. I didn't really want my competitors to have it, and then I finally wrote it. And so you asked a question like, why do I why do I do it? Well, after you've built tens of 1000 of alter egos for people, and then you see the transformations on the other side of it, and you see how fast you can do it because the moment you change someone at the identity level because beliefs, attitudes, habits, behaviors are all stock stacked on top of how you see yourself, which is the identity. Well, if I can change the identity of someone, while all that other stuff just changes naturally with it, So instead of me going and attacking someone's beliefs and trying to work with them there, which is what I call the spider's web of the mind, the moment you pluck a belief boom, that tarantula just jumps on you, and that tarantula's resistance. It's gonna try because that's where you get all the, like, narrative of, well, that's just who I am. That's the way I was born. That's my nature. That's my I'm like, okay. Woah. Woah. Woah. Woah. Stop giving me all the reasons why you can't do it because here's a 1000 others of why you can't do it. So that has been, you know, one of the driving forces. But, originally, in kind of its kind of core crystallized beating heart of why I do it is because it's the thing that saved my life. I was and I'm very open about this. I was sexually abused and raped as a as a young boy at a church camp when I was thirteen. And by 2 men kind of held captive over the cap course of a couple of days, you know, in that, I was a very innocent kid. I would grow up with phenomenal parents, great family, farm and ranch, simple, like, great life. And so that shattered a lot of my sense of who I was and, you know, that and I didn't tell anybody about it for 30 years until just a few years ago, frankly. So lived with all that. And for me, it was a way of I still had within me this desire to wanna make an impact in the world, but I battled that, like, I battled suicide at 3 different suicide attempts when I was young and Even when I came home from that church camp, I tried to drown myself in my family's pool when I was, you know, twelve years old and something you know, I couldn't do it. And then couple of other occasions, so, you know, mental health challenges like depression. But this creative imagination was the thing that kind of kept me going. Like, I could I could kind of dissociate a bit from Todd's story, and I could now become Geronimo on that football field. And then I could disassociate from Todd's insecurities, which listen like, why some of us do the things that we do? Yeah. I'm not a therapist. I I don't do that. But it's there's some deep stuff that goes on with people. And I am wholly unequipped for navigating that with people. There's other people that are better for that. That's why I have a whole host of world famous and phenomenal therapists that I'll send clients to. But I'm very good at helping people who can't just go into the sidelines of life, check out for the next 3 years while they get themselves perfect. I'm really good at helping them continue to navigate things And instead of carry a big weight on their back like this playfulness, this creative imagination just seems to lighten the load for people And so I'm super close to it. It's it's helped me navigate things and overcome things and, you know, continue to pursue some of my, you know, wants. And I know that there's people out there that may hey. Some people are doing it just out of pure playfulness. Like and that's the beautiful thing about this idea and the mindset is like, hey. Like, you don't need to be overcoming deep trauma with this. There's other people who are struggling with stuff, but they have a lot to give other people And if I can play a part in helping more great people get out into the world with more of their goodness, then I think that's a pretty worthwhile endeavor for me to go and spend my life doing. Well, thank you, Todd. That's yeah. Really moving to hear that, and thank you for sharing and being open.

Richard Medcalf
I think the more we really get into that connection with our story, I think, at least in my case, owing for years without really understanding, why I did the thing as ideas. I I shared with you earlier, you know, my sister being severely disabled. I grew up with that. It felt completely normal to me, and I was convinced it had no effect on me whatsoever. And then a couple of years ago, I was scratching my head, and I was like, well, it's quite a big thing. You know, it must have changed something And then it all started to come out, and I realized this was a huge inspiration and driving force. And it could be hard to see it sometimes. I would've been with clients. I'm always asking, like, Do you actually know what your story is? Do you actually know, like, what what chapters do you wanna write? in your legacy that kinda closes the loop with some of these chapters which were earlier in your life that are important to you.

Todd Herman
Yeah. And you know, like, along with that, you know, through that process of, like, helping people and even in the method that I talk about with the alter ego, you know, when you find that source code of inspiration, whoever that might be or whatever that might be. You know, Kobe did this brilliantly frankly, like, when we had come upon the black mamba, he knew more rep more about the black mamba snake than any biologists on the planet. Like, he just went in and learned so much about it. It's musculature and how it was built and you know, how much venom. He knew down to the ounce like how much venom, you know, would be inside of a black mamba snake and all that. So when you're going back to the whole concept of the story, So I know my story, but I also know from where I come from, like the story of my ancestry and stuff. And, you know, my on my mom's side, we have what's called a family bible, which traces back our family history to all the way back to about 1100 AD, and that's on the Scottish side that goes up into the north of Scotland to Robert the Bruce. And so then when you learn about your your ancestors, I think that helps to infuse you with even more. richness and more beauty and more purpose because someone's gonna be reading about you at some point in time as well, and it would be a nice little kind of bullet point in their list to stop and go, oh, wow. Richard Medcalf, look at what he he went and did. That's that's cool. So that's a part of me because that bloodline runs through me in. I think it's a very, very powerful force for a lot of people when they can learn more about where they came from as well. Yeah. Fantastic. Well, hey, Todd. We could talk I'm sure hours on this stuff. We're times flying, and we've almost not scratched the surface.

Richard Medcalf
But sake of time, perhaps we can wrap it up. What's yeah. How can people get in touch with you, find out about what you're up to? because I know you've got many plates it's been, which are fascinating.

Todd Herman
Yeah. So todd herman dot me is kind of my home based on the Internet, and you can go there and, you know, all the different things that I'm involved in and programs and books and, you know, You'd mentioned software for people building coaching businesses and leading leadership businesses is there. And then on Twitter, it's taut_hermanandlinkedin, you know, you'll find me I'm the guy with the yellow background and glasses on my face.

Richard Medcalf
So yeah. Super Richard is still around and kicking. Yeah. That's great. And last question to talk, like, what what's Mof Plumbing your impact gonna look like? You know, if you were to over the next few year, few years, if you were to do something which made everything else like a footnote, what comes to mind? What would you love to create? It might not be something that you're working on yet, but what what what what comes to mind?

Todd Herman
Yeah. Well, I you would ask before about, like, you know, why I do what I do. And when I sort of reflect on it, you know, basically, my entire career in any business I've had has kind of been in the world of, like, human transformation in some way, whether it's been with athletes or, you know, leaders and CEOs or businesses and stuff. And so I am very excited about what we can do with our upcoach platform. You know, it's the kind of thing that I wish I had when I was growing and these businesses because sometimes the delivery side of, you know, working with clients, that's kind of the the hardest part the hardest not to crack and making it simple and easy and consumable for our clients to get them their results. And so if I can, you know, get a 100,000 plus great coaches on their that are all serving maybe 50 clients or more. That's 5,000,000 people that are being impacted, and those 5,000,000 people that are all leaders being coached and mentored and advised to something better is gonna impact another 50,000,000 people. And so that's kind of those are my numbers. That's how I'm working on my head and So I'm excited about realizing that kind of dream is is impacting the world of coaching because I love it.

Richard Medcalf
I think it's a great opportunity to help people excel. I love it. I love the fact, actually, you have 3 numbers you multiply together there to actually figure out what the impact's gonna be, which is which is a great way to end this episode of the Impact Multi Fire podcast. Right? We actually did some multiplication, which is fantastic. Well, hey, Todd. It's been such fun talking to you It really it's been a pleasure. I've you know, I've already we've woven some of, you know, your work into my own thinking and and probably my practice as well over time. So thank you for being generous with your insights today and and in the book and and elsewhere. and I look forward to hearing the story. Continue.

Todd Herman
Thank you, Richard. Appreciate the chance. Cheers. Take care now. Bye bye.

Richard Medcalf
Well, that's a wrap. If you received value from this conversation, please do leave us a review on your favorite podcast platform. would deeply appreciate it. And if you'd like to check out the show notes from this episode, head to expodrant.com/podcast. where you'll find all the details. Now finally, when you're in top leadership, who supports and challenges you at a deep level to help you motor play your impact. Let's cover more about the different ways we can support you at xquadrant.com.

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