22 Jan Episode 019: Brad Mulvey
“Don’t be afraid to chase your dreams and take action. Action begets action, so just get started.” - Brad Mulvey
Most of us have dreams, thoughts about our future, and goals we hope for. The question is, what steps are you taking to seize those dreams?
Brad Mulvey’s personal development journey started from a place of unfulfillment – and the feeling that he needed to regain control. That’s when he decided to make a change. He founded the Millennial Mastermind Podcast to give millennial entrepreneurs the tools, tactics, and inspiration to realize their vision. Now, he helps other young professionals develop their entrepreneurial skill sets to create the life of their dreams.
Today on the #IAmMovement podcast, Rock and Brad trade thoughts on calming your mind in order to take action, breaking out of a fixed mindset to be inspired, and preparing for an unpredictable path. This conversation will blow your worldview wide open – don’t miss a word.
00:00 – Brad Mulvey Intro/Identity
04:25 – From corporate life to inspirational impact
08:55 – Thoughts on change, personal development and meditation
14:25 – Language that transforms, and saying “yes”
19:00 – Pushing your capabilities and being consistent
25:45 – Visions for the future
28:30 – Final takeaways
Why intention without action leads nowhere
What you can do to push your capability
How consistency changes the game
And much more!
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“I am a being who will be learning for the rest of my life.” – Brad Mulvey
“Meditation helps me to at least get control of my emotions and my mind to put the systems in place to take action.” – Brad Mulvey
“You can think or state all the positive statements you can think of, but without the action to follow it up, and without actually taking the steps to make those things reality, they don’t carry their weight.” – Brad Mulvey
“Consistency is the most important thing in anything that you do.” – Brad Mulvey
Hi, I’m Rock Thomas, the founder of M1. The tribe of healthy, wealthy and passionate people, also known as fulfillionaires. You’re listening to the I Am Movement Podcast where we believe that the words that follow I am follow you. Join me in the world’s greatest thought leaders as we discuss the power of transformation and making success a part of your identity.
Rock Thomas: 00:31
So my next guest is the host of The Millennial Mastermind Podcast, the show dedicated to giving entrepreneurial millennials the tools, tactics and inspiration to turn their dreams into a reality. Brad’s own personal development journey was born from a place of frustration and desperation, which is what I find on this show is that people that come in here that are game changes and want to make a shift have gone through some sort of a triple E experience, an extreme emotional experience that put them into a fork in the road and they went in a new direction. Like many of us, he found himself at a point in life where he felt unfulfilled, undervalued and underpaid. That’s when he decided to make a change, thus was born The Millennial Mastermind Podcast, and now he gets to help other young professionals ignite their entrepreneurial potential and create a life worth living. And welcome to the show, Brad.
Brad Mulvey: 01:22
Hey, I am fired up to be here, Rock. Thanks for having me.
Rock Thomas: 01:25
I love the fact you’re fired up. Most people say they’re excited but I actually like that word fired up better.
Brad Mulvey: 01:31
Yeah, pumped psych. Do you know? I like to mix it up, but all good words to explain how thrilled I am with the opportunity.
Rock Thomas: 01:38
So let’s get right into it. We talk a lot about the value and the impact of labels and you in your prep for this, you have a lot of I am statements. Let’s talk globally a little bit about how your identity. Who you are, how you see yourself, how that’s shaped your life.
Brad Mulvey: 01:57
Yeah, I think it’s a really important question and it’s really changed for me over the last couple of years because for many years coming out of school, I thought that I was cut and shaped to be this business person, wear a suit and tie every day, do the go down the sales route. I lived in Chicago, so I lived in the big city, worked longer hours and I loved it. For a few years out of school, I thought that that was my passion, that that’s what I was meant to do and really climb that corporate ladder, but that changed for me quite a bit as a few things, significant things happened. First of all, I met my now wife and we moved out of Chicago back to Cleveland, and all of a sudden, I found myself in a job where I wasn’t feeling passionate about what I was doing.
Brad Mulvey: 02:49
I wasn’t feeling that fulfilled. And I realized that the corporate route had many twists and turns and I didn’t have much control over where that was taking me and I needed to make a change that would give me that control. And I realized that entrepreneurship was the route for that. I started diving into personal development, things like that. Listening to a ton of podcasts, reading a ton of books, spending a lot of time watching YouTube videos on the topic, and really became a junkie for content consumption, but for many years also didn’t take much action on that. And so I realized that that in itself was a trap and I realized I needed to take some action and that’s where I went out and found it and created a podcast called The Millennial Mastermind Podcast. I now identify myself as an entrepreneur, as a business leader and a thought leader, and someone who can really inspire change with my audience and within the world in the process of creating that change.
Rock Thomas: 03:55
Beautiful. So let’s talk a practicality about what that looks like because a lot of people I think want to do what you’re doing. I’ve done dozens and dozens of these interviews and what comes up consistently is usually somebody has had something happen in their upbringing that gave them what we call a triple E, an extreme emotional experience that shapes their perspective on life. You had yours at work from what you said and then they want to help other people live these amazing lives. So how old are you now?
Brad Mulvey: 04:27
Rock Thomas: 04:28
You’re 29. And your goal is to do that. So how do you do that? You have your podcast, what else do you do?
Brad Mulvey: 04:35
So I have the podcast, I have a mastermind community, what I call it, which is an online community where we bring people together who are aspiring or early stage entrepreneurs who are really looking to develop their business and build the business of their life, and that’s more of an intimate setting. So the podcast I see is more of a content-based platform where I put out interviews with experts like yourself as you are on the show and drops some knowledge bonds and other entrepreneurs and thought leaders who can help to inspire listeners and give them the tools and tactics to be able to create businesses that will ultimately help them live the life of their dreams. And then the online communities way to get a little bit more it’s myths for people to be able to share their journeys and connect with other people who are going through similar events in their life.
Rock Thomas: 05:33
So Brad, as an entrepreneur, help us understand how you were able to go from this rat race of a world, the corporate world, and monetize your desire to impact other people. As an inspiration to other people, how do you do this? So people pay to be part of your mastermind group, is that it?
Brad Mulvey: 05:48
That’s right. So there’s the payments be part of the mastermind group and then the payments be part of this community which would be recurring revenue on the business side.
Rock Thomas: 05:58
And how do you find people that want to be part of that community?
Brad Mulvey: 06:02
Yeah, so a lot of it has been… The podcast has been around a lot longer. So the podcast has been going for about three and a half years, and so that’s the top of the funnel that gets people in the door, gets them familiar with myself and the brand and the mission, and then those individuals who want to go a little bit deeper can then join the community. And from there it’s a lot of word of mouth. Just a really good experience for those who joined the community and have other people in their life who may be having similar entrepreneurial aspirations and think that it could benefit them and hook them up with me and we get them involved.
Rock Thomas: 06:41
Very cool. Very cool. So they come in and they get to expand their entrepreneurial knowledge. Do they interact with the other members? Do you have experts come into that community?
Brad Mulvey: 06:52
Yeah, exactly. So they interact with the other members building that community and a peer group of other people who have similar dreams and aspirations as that they do, especially a lot of aspiring entrepreneurs, people who in our audience, specifically, individuals who may be going down that corporate route and like me, realize that’s not the path for them, aren’t so currently surrounded by individuals with those similar ambitions. And so the community aspect of it is huge because all of a sudden they can plug into a network of other folks who have those similar goals and visions for their life. We also bring in guest mentors who through Facebook lives, I’ll interview them and then the community will have an opportunity to ask questions and interact and be part of those conversations as well as just regular Facebook lives with myself and then putting out some content that’s really specific to the different challenges that come up with early stage entrepreneurship and just getting off the ground.
Brad Mulvey: 07:58
So we’re pumping a lot of exclusive content in the community that people are interacting on. And another-
Rock Thomas: 08:04
How long have you been doing this?
Brad Mulvey: 08:06
So this is pretty young actually. This is only about a month at the time of recording this podcast.
Rock Thomas: 08:13
Brad Mulvey: 08:13
Yeah, so we’re fresh. We’ve had a mastermind group, not the online community portion of it, going for about two years. So that one’s a little bit more matured, but the actual online community is younger.
Rock Thomas: 08:27
What does it cost to be part of your community?
Brad Mulvey: 08:30
So we try to make it pretty affordable for anybody who’s serious about investing in themselves. So it’s only 47 bucks a month.
Rock Thomas: 08:37
Okay. All right, so they can get their foot in pretty much. If you can’t afford 47 bucks a month, then you probably shouldn’t be an entrepreneur.
Brad Mulvey: 08:44
Right, and my thought behind it too was that there’s a lot of amazing groups. I know you have an amazing group for entrepreneurs and for people who are really making big changes in their lives, and I encourage everybody to go check those out. I’ve suggested your group to people that I know and then we’ve promoted it on my show, but for people who are really early and still trying just to figure it out, I know that the more premium groups can be a little bit tough for them to justify, so I tried to offer a community for people who are just getting in the door who may then go on to graduate to the bigger and better things like M1, but we wanted to create a space that people can really start to engage in and surround themselves with people who have similar visions.
Rock Thomas: 09:31
Yeah, it makes total sense. And also you’re 29, so you might attract people that are a little bit within your age range. Would that be fair to say?
Brad Mulvey: 09:41
Yeah, absolutely. And the podcast is called The Millennial Mastermind Podcast.
Rock Thomas: 09:45
Brad Mulvey: 09:45
So naturally, we tend to skew that way.
Rock Thomas: 09:49
Yeah, awesome. So let’s talk a little bit about how some of the personal development fixations you have because I know that’s one of the things that’s really important to you. A lot of people that are not in personal development think that you can’t really change. You are who you are. What are your thoughts around that?
Brad Mulvey: 10:10
So I think you absolutely can change. And the reason I say that is I mentioned the trajectory I started my career on and when I came out of school, out of college, I was very much of the mindset that this is great. My education is done. I will learn stuff in my career and in my job, but I have completed what I need to complete on the formal education side. I’d never planned on going back for a master’s or MBA or anything like that. I was really a fixed mindset in terms of what I had done education wise, and I came to this realization that really flips me on my head that I talked about moving and meeting my wife and having, one piece that I mentioned was a long commute that got me really hooked on podcasts, but also the other piece of it that I didn’t bring up was that there were some people in my life, some family members, very close to me who went through some significant financial challenges that really just devastated parts of my family.
Brad Mulvey: 11:20
And so seeing that firsthand is probably what you mentioned earlier about some sort of event really shaking things up for you. That was it for me, and I didn’t realize it at the time. This is only six years or so later that I can look back on and reflect and say, “That was that event.” And even you talking about it earlier helps spark that thought but it created the shift. All of these different things and I realized, you know what? Yes, my college, my formal education is complete, but I am a being who will be learning for the rest of my life and for whatever reason, in my naivety as a new grad, I did not think that is at all.
Brad Mulvey: 12:05
I didn’t read personal development books, I wasn’t listening to podcasts on this stuff at all, and it started slowly, but then I just got plugged into this world and realized that I had so much to learn. There was just so much I never even considered.
Rock Thomas: 12:22
Brad Mulvey: 12:23
Meditation would be an example of something that I never even… It sounded so woo-woo and out there, and now I am always telling people to meditate. When I started the podcast, I probably was a little overzealous and I was trying to get every single one of my friends, family members, random people I met at parties, to start podcasts on something that they’re passionate about just because the learning experience of it and the opportunity to connect with inspiring people in whatever your area of interest is is unbelievable. And there was so many things that I hadn’t considered and those sort of-
Rock Thomas: 12:58
I want to break that down a little bit.
Brad Mulvey: 13:00
Rock Thomas: 13:00
Brad, I want to go deep. I want to go like, “Okay, first of all you have a great, okay, meditation. Great.” What are the benefits for you of meditation?
Brad Mulvey: 13:07
So for meditation, it really just helps me slow down and improve my thought process. So I’m the type of person who thinks a million things a day, has a thousand different ideas and scattered all over the place, and what meditation has helped me to do and really learning breath work that goes into some meditations is take a few deep breaths during the day and really collect my thoughts is really the most tangible benefit that I’ve seen is this ability to now, in the midst of the chaos, and I’m sure a lot of the listeners have those days if it’s not every day, where shit is hitting the fan constantly, it’s hard to really get a grasp on what it is that you need to be prioritizing.
Brad Mulvey: 13:56
There’s 10 different things that came in in the last hour and you already had a to-do list of 30 and you’ve knocked off one of those things. So for me, it helps me just take a deep breath, look at what’s going on in my life, in this situation, in that day, whatever it is, and really get focused on what needs to happen without getting overwhelmed. There’s more action I think that needs to take place after you take those few deep breaths, but meditation has helped me with that stage of the game to at least get control of my emotions and my mind to be able to put the systems in place to take action that warrants that situation.
Rock Thomas: 14:37
Very cool. So if somebody wants to change, what I often talk to them about is the words that follow I am follow you. And we had a gentleman on the show the other day and he was saying he was a military guy, but in his I am statement, he goes, “I am compassionate.” And I said to him, “Are you compassionate really?” He goes, “Hey Rock, thanks for calling me out.” He goes, “I not yet, but I’m moving toward it. I’m creating a consciousness about it. It’s my intention. It’s creating a vibration for me because it’s an area I want to develop. I’m a warrior, but I want to be more compassionate.” Do you believe that you can language yourself into transforming some of the perceptions or self perceptions you have?
Brad Mulvey: 15:14
I absolutely do. And I think one of the I am statements that I sent to you was I am well respected in natural entrepreneurial space and frequently paid to speak at events around the world. That’s probably about 10% true right now. And in reality, there’s some folks out there who might respect me a little bit. I wouldn’t say that I’m frequently paid to speak at events around the world. There’s been a handful. I think that the thoughts that you speak to yourself, that you feed yourself, is fuel to making those things happen. Now, I think that some people get caught up in the world of manifestation of things that they-
Rock Thomas: 15:59
Without taking action you mean?
Brad Mulvey: 16:01
Right, exactly. The secret, for example.
Rock Thomas: 16:04
I get it.
Brad Mulvey: 16:04
I think there’s a lot of power behind that principle, but you can’t just speak it to yourself, but that could be a great first step to get clarity on what action you need to take and where you want to head. And I think by having different things that you speak to yourself that you can start to understand, okay, this is what I’m telling myself day in and day out that I am going to where I’m going to move to, what I’m going to accomplish, and that can help you start to take that action. I don’t think just speaking on its own though, and I think that’s really important and that’s what I try to tell people is that you can think all of the positive thoughts that, or state all of the positive statements that you can possibly think of, but without that action to follow it up and without actually taking those steps to make those things reality, they don’t carry their weight.
Rock Thomas: 16:59
I would agree with that. And here’s one of the things that I teach people is I say, in order to get yourself to take the action, why don’t you just get in the habit of saying yes to things and figuring out the details later? So to give you an example, let’s say I was to say to you, “Have you ever done a seven day juice cleanse?”
Brad Mulvey: 17:15
Rock Thomas: 17:15
Okay, and were the benefits good?
Brad Mulvey: 17:19
They absolutely were.
Rock Thomas: 17:20
So if somebody were to come up to you and say, “Hey, we’re doing a juice cleanse in the next couple of months. Do you want to do it with us?” What would you say?
Brad Mulvey: 17:26
Yeah, I would probably be in for that.
Rock Thomas: 17:29
So the ability to say yes to things without having all the details or all the information or know what’s going to be the right timing for you at the time and you’re going to be traveling. Maybe you’re going to be working out what have you, but your willingness to say yes is, I think, one of the precursors to people that are successful. On the other side of the coin, people that haven’t developed that muscle, they tend to live in hesitation and fear and doubt and worry, and they’re not willing, they want more information, but you die through paralysis and you end up missing most of life. Is that it? To me, that’s a tool that helps you build and expand your identity. Does that make sense to you as well?
Brad Mulvey: 18:06
It does. And I think it also relates to this concept that I really subscribe to, that Action begets to Action, and so when you say yes to those things, whatever they might be, if it’s a positive thing that’s going to advance your life, by saying yes, you’re forcing yourself even especially actually, best if it’s something uncomfortable for you, but it forces you into a new situation and you start taking action that way by something that if you’re saying yes naturally, somebody is asking you to participate or to do something. So you have the opportunity to let them pull you into whatever that thing is.
Brad Mulvey: 18:46
And let’s use a race for example. If somebody asks you if you want to do a Tough Mudder several months from now and you say, “Yeah, let’s do it. I’m in.” But you’re scared shitless, what it forces you to do is start taking action to prepare for that. Going on runs, doing some workouts that are going to help you train for that. And then once you go through that, it begets more action of, “All right, now I’ve been working towards this goal for however many months, I’m going to continue the process.” So that might be an over simplified example, but I think it works in fitness, in business, in health, and so many different areas of your life that I totally agree with you on on the yes principle.
Rock Thomas: 19:27
Yeah, nice. So now let’s talk about something that’s shaped your book or something you read that gave you a new perception on a new context. About six years ago, I read Tim Ferriss’s The 4-Hour Workweek, where he really talks about the ability to work anywhere on the planet if you are able to delegate and use technology to your advantage. And it really got me thinking, why am I sitting in a 10 by 10 office for 20 or 30 hours a week running my businesses, looking at a gyprock wall when I can be doing this same thing from a villa or a baret in Thailand and nobody cares that I’m sending an email or I’m on a call and I have a beach as the background versus a gyprock wall. Does that make sense?
Brad Mulvey: 20:09
Rock Thomas: 20:10
So, what book has shifted you or is shifting you in a way where you went, “Oh my gosh, I didn’t look at the world that way and now I’m choosing [inaudible 00:20:18] in a different way.”
Brad Mulvey: 20:19
Yeah, and recency bias might be taking over by brain here, but one that’s really shook me up recently is the book Can’t Hurt Me by David Goggins. You familiar with that one Rock?
Rock Thomas: 20:32
Oh yeah, one of my faves.
Brad Mulvey: 20:33
Yeah, so for those of the listeners who don’t know, David Goggins is a former Navy SEAL, has gone through Green Beret training, just an extraordinary human being in terms of what he’s accomplished through his military career, but he’s also done an outrageous amount of ultra marathons and these ultra endurance type performance athletic feats. And his story, it’s his book, he’s the author of it, and his story is unbelievable because he started really with no advantages on his side, came up with an extremely rough upbringing. One that is really hard to fathom for myself and for a lot of people who had really been fortunate with their situations growing up, and really fought through so many challenges to get to where he was.
Brad Mulvey: 21:26
But he has this principle. And what makes the book so powerful is his own personal life story. And he really is vulnerable in this book and he goes into some of the shit that he went through, but he has this principle that when you hit the point where you feel that you’re at your max capacity, you can’t run one more mile, one more step, you can’t put any more work in that day, you can’t lift one more weight, you can’t do whatever it is, that you’re really only at 40% of your body’s and mind’s capability, you just have to push through that seemingly breaking point and tap into what you’re capable of. So that one has really, really shaken me up in a good way and has messed me up a little bit in terms of what I think that I’m capable of then. Something that people can immediately implement in their life. And it’s really hard to read that one and not go out for like the longest run you’ve had in years after like three chapters.
Rock Thomas: 22:33
Yeah, it totally shatters the frame of how you look at pain. Now when I feel like, I’ll give you a funny example. I was cleaning this roof and because these tenants left one of my houses in a mess and I decided to get on the roof and clean the gutters, and 20 mosquitoes were all around my head. It was early in the morning and I was thinking of David Goggins, I’m thinking. I could wish they weren’t there or I could withstand the inconvenience and see how little I can let it affect me. And it was just fascinating to watch my desire, my amygdala trying to go, “Oh, I wish they weren’t there. Oh, there’s one in your ear. Oh, there’s one on your eye. There’s three buzzing around. They’re about to land. They’re going to get you.” And then the other part of you was like, “Can’t hurt me. Can’t hurt me. Go get the blood you want. Go ahead but it’s irrelevant to me. You cannot shake me.” So yeah, awesome book. I love that book. I love that book.
Brad Mulvey: 23:38
Yeah, and there’s so many times just in our normal day lives that we can test those things. It’s like they’re constantly coming up of where you can see how far you can push yourself, but one way that I’ll just do it in everyday life is with cold showers because that is something that physically you’re not going to do yourself any damage. You’re actually going to do yourself a lot of good if you can withstand that cold water, but you have the ability to turn the water off or hot at any moment in time. So it takes a lot of self control. And that’s a great mental exercise in itself is just to play around with cold showers, which I know you talk a lot about too.
Rock Thomas: 24:24
I love it. Great suggestion. So I have these rules of success that Kim generated out of coaching people for years, and I asked you to choose one maybe that meant something to you. Which one did you focus on? Do you remember?
Brad Mulvey: 24:39
Might you be able to remind me? It’s been a few weeks inside.
Rock Thomas: 24:42
It is 30 minutes a day of personal development.
Brad Mulvey: 24:44
Yes, yeah, so that’s been an important tenant since I’ve been on this personal development journey is to do it consistently. And I’ve realized even more and more in recent years that consistency is the most important thing in anything that you do. For me, for the podcast, I’ve seen just by the numbers, there’s the data to back it up that if I’m consistent with posting content and putting it out there, the numbers go up. If I’m not, the numbers go down or stay stagnant. So it works the same way for me with personal development is that I need to be working on it consistently or I either A, fall off the wagon or B, go stagnant in my personal growth. And so for me, just the most important thing is scheduling that time before it comes up and before it happens because I realized that I’m really bad at with whether it’s meditation, reading, working out. I’m really bad at just in the middle of day saying, “All right, time to do that personal development stuff that I’ve been talking about.” It needs to be on the calendar for me to get it done.
Rock Thomas: 25:53
So you know yourself, which is good. So let’s talk a little bit about what is your vision five years from now? You’re a millennial, you’re living a different life than those people because you have this free schedule. The world’s changing fast. We may have in five years from now, things like drones delivering FedEx and cars that are self-driving. Things are going to change in the next five years. Five your age with your vision, think he’s going to be doing in five years.
Brad Mulvey: 26:24
Yeah, so five years from now and just to be fully open and honest with the audience, so I still do have commitments outside of The Millennial Mastermind and there is still a job that I work, but so for me, it’s really having that ultimate freedom of my time with my family, where I can work from where I want to work from anywhere in the world and have the ability to, as kids come into my life, as my family grows, I have that flexibility to be there for the important events. And I’ll be driving my flying car obviously in just five years from now, but no. But those are the things that really drive me right now is freedom. It’s not necessarily the dollars. Those are great and that is definitely a piece of it, but it’s the freedom component of time and location that’s important.
Rock Thomas: 27:24
Well, fantastic. Brad, I want to thank you for being on the show and for sharing your wisdom, your perspective and your search to make the world a better place and all the people that are going to hang out with you and that sort of thing. I want to remind the listeners that the words that follow, I am follow you, the strongest force in the human personality is a desire to remain consistent with how we describe ourselves. So if we describe ourselves as a morning person, we’re likely going to get up early. If we describe ourselves as a really bad athlete, we probably won’t take up new sports.
Rock Thomas: 27:57
So I encourage you to be really, really careful with how you describe yourself and therefore you can live into that character. I sometimes say to people, it’s like describing, imagine you’re writing a role for a movie and you’re describing the character of that individual and you’re the actor in your life. You might as well describe them as a bad-ass out of some procrastinating, overweight, loser, lazy, stupid and now those labels may be offered to you as they were to me Brad, or some of them, but you don’t have to take them on. You can shift them. So your last parting words, Brad, as we head out into our respective worlds.
Brad Mulvey: 28:37
Just don’t be afraid to chase your dreams and take action. Action begets action. So just get started in any way that you can see ahead of your any path. I guarantee you that the journey will take you in a different direction, but taking that positive first step will lead you to unforeseen roads and paths in your future. So I encourage you to take that first step.
Rock Thomas: 29:02
Thanks a lot, Brad. I appreciate it.
Brad Mulvey: 29:04
Thanks Rock. It’s been a blast.
This is the I Am Movement Podcast. To find out more about how you can join the I Am Movement and take your life to the next level, go to gom1.com. G-Om1.com.