David Laroche: Just before to start I would like to be sure, I would like to say global leader of peak performance.
Joseph McClendon: The global leader, ultimate performance.
David Laroche: OK.
Joseph McClendon: Subtle difference.
David Laroche: Global leader, ultimate performance and Tony Robins’ first performance coach. Do you want me to say that or not?
Joseph McClendon: I’d rather not. Only because I want to make sure I have my own identity. In the end you can ask do I work with him, that kind of thing.
David Laroche: Yes, I understand. You know in your website the thing is right written.
Joseph McClendon: Oh, really?
David Laroche: Yes. About us, so you have to change that.
Joseph McClendon: I don’t know which website it is, there are few out there.
David Laroche: Josephmcclendan.com, I’m not sure but I think it’s that.
Joseph McClendon: I’ll have to check that.
David Laroche: It’s a headline.
Joseph McClendon: Really? It’s not one that I made. It’s crazy. One of my promoters sent me six links of websites that were made with my name. I didn’t even know who they were. We’re constantly taking down videos and taking down websites and things like that. It’s crazy. I guess it’s better than not being noticed at all.
David Laroche: It builds a brand for you. Are you ready?
Joseph McClendon: Yes.
David Laroche: Hello achievers! Today it is an awesome day. I am with Joseph McClendon III. He is a global leader, ultimate performance and he is with me to answer my questions about health, about performance, about success. You will enjoy this interview so follow that.
Joseph McClendon: Hello. Thank you so much for having me, David.
David Laroche: How are you today?
Joseph McClendon: I could not be better. Yourself?
David Laroche: It’s an awesome day.
Joseph McClendon: You’re in my town now so it is awesome.
David Laroche: Yes. It is the first word I learned: awesome.
Joseph McClendon: It’s how you would describe California.
David Laroche: Before I ask you some questions, I would like to know more about your story and how did you become one of the top speakers—and especially your struggles because a lot of people are thinking, “Oh, the success for people is they’re lucky, it’s easy for them.” I love struggles and how you overcame it. So who are you?
Joseph McClendon: First of all, I think it’s just the opposite. I think if you poll—and I have polled most of my friends, people that I know that are successful or have accomplished a lot—have gone through a lot of struggles and often times come through times that were insurmountable, if you will.
There are several books that I’ve written about it. I remember reading one not too long ago—forgive me, I don’t remember the title—but it was about the amount of people who became successful as a result of having been fired from a job and at the time they thought it was the bottom.
For myself, I grew up in middle class. I had a great family, great parents and everything but when I was 18-years old, three grown men tried to take my life because of the color of my skin. It robbed me of my confidence and my self esteem and my self worth. And I wandered homeless. I live in Los Angeles now but I lived in a place not too far from here called Lancaster. I lived in a cardboard box.
What changed it for me was somebody gave me a book and it was somebody I didn’t know. It was a kind person that gave me this book. The book was called “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill—greatest book ever. I was 18-years old and didn’t want to read it but he almost forced me to read it and I begrudgingly read it. When I read it, it changed everything. It changed how I thought about myself and I recognized that I could change myself, how I thought, how I felt about myself and how I viewed the world around me.
I did some of the fundamentals in the book, which two things happened. Number one, doing them my life changed, I changed and I started to produce more, but it also made me recognize that it wasn’t just the knowledge. I remember thinking this at the time that it wasn’t just what was in that book, it’s what I did.
When I went back to that person to thank him and to ask him what I could do for him, what he said to me was, “What you do for me is what I’ve done for you.” He said, “You help as many people as you possibly can and change their lives.” At first honestly I didn’t take it seriously, but as I grew and started to recognize that’s my calling and that’s what I love to do and that’s what I do, what I do now.
David Laroche: It’s amazing. Maybe 80 % of the people I’ve interviewed said, “If I had one book to recommend is ‘Think and Grow Rich’.” It’s amazing, it’s the same book for everyone.
Joseph McClendon: Over and over again because it’s the fundamentals. It’s like learning how to walk and if you want to make changes and understand that the human beings can change. The fundamentals of personal development are all right there.
David Laroche: You started to do speeches, right?
Joseph McClendon: Not right away. As a matter of fact, I was in “survival mode” so I just wanted to have a roof over my head and have a girlfriend and have some fundamentals. But my dream back then was I wanted to be a musician, I wanted to be a professional musician. I wanted to make records, I wanted to do all that stuff. I got a job, I started working, I started doing things and that was what I pursued for many, many years. Using those principles made my way into the music world and I started doing that first.
Then I got a recording deal in 1990. The record company they gave us the money, they started to produce the record and everything, and then the record company changed hands. They sold to another company and my personal representative left the company and I got stuck in there and I couldn’t make music because the contract wouldn’t let me do it.
That’s when I decided, “I got to do something else,” and that’s when I started doing what I do now. All along I had been working with a couple of my mentors, as you know, Tony Robins, teaching a little bit and learning a lot. I just started doing this and wrote my first book that became very successful.
David Laroche: What was your first book?
Joseph McClendon: My first book was called, “Unlimited Power”. It was a bestseller back in ’96. Way long time ago! I also got a degree in Psychology. I opened a practice in Los Angeles, seeing every known weirdo you can possibly imagine. I say that jokingly because people have challenges all over the place. I became very proficient in helping people get over fears and phobias and emotional challenges, those types of things. Again, I was working with Tony at the same time as well.
I started to recognize, “God! One-on-one is great and I still love to do that, but to reach more people I need to have larger audiences.” And I started to write some more books and I started doing more of that and that’s kind of what I do now.
David Laroche: There are a lot of people who are trained to become speakers, experts. Why did you succeed in this field?
Joseph McClendon: That’s a great question. If I have to be honest with you—and I hope this doesn’t sound too noble—it’s because I care. I do have technique and I think that’s important, but I think that what’s more important is to care about your audience. Just now I’m creating a speakers performance school, if you will, to teach people to seek, to teach people to speak and to present and that type of thing and to teach some of the techniques that are not out there.
I’ve had some great mentors that they’ve taught me and that I’ve learned from and observed. But I think to answer your question is because I love people and
I care about my audience and that makes the biggest difference. That with the technique makes the biggest difference.
David Laroche: So the first step is to care about your audience. When you had that what did you changed? Who did you became? Maybe some traits you developed in yourself to have this kind of success. Did you developed humor, perseverance? What did you developed?
Joseph McClendon: Well, I’ve had lots of mentors. Some of my mentors were not even speakers. Some of my mentors were humorous people. I really like David Letterman, Eddie Murphy, but I also like Martin Luther King and one of my mentors, Anthony Robins and several other speakers around. I think, to answer your question, “Who I became?” is a conglomeration of who I brought to the table meeting, all my years of been a musician and who I believe I am, as well as some of the traits that I borrowed from other people. There are specific things.
I always tell people when I’m speaking, because I like to give everything away—I don’t want there to be any secrets—and I’ll tell people, “Watch what I do. Watch what I say. Everything that I do from the time that I start to the time that I finish is a reason and a purpose and you can see it. And I’ll share it with you.”
When people watch it—because that’s what did, I watched, and I had people teach me—all the way back to “Think and Grow Rich”, it’s what you do, it’s what you practice, it’s what you rehearse that’ll produce yourself.
David Laroche: Can you share me one of your struggles you had in this moment and how you overcame it? Did you have some fears? To not succeed for example.
Joseph McClendon: I didn’t have fears of not succeeding, but I had—believe it or not—an extreme fear of rejection or what some might call “stage fright.” Believe it or not. I didn’t like to call it that at the time, but I’d just get so nervous before I go on stage.
David Laroche: And now?
Joseph McClendon: Now I fall asleep before I go on stage, literally. Whenever is speak, if anybody has ever have had the privilege of speaking, they know that I’m not going to just give a speech. They know that I’m not just going to help them feel good, I’m going to teach them to do something because that’s so important. So using a technique I ridded myself of the fear of rejection, I ridded myself of stage fright and replaced it with relaxation and calmness to the point that before I go on stage literally I’m yawning.
It’s a technique that’s simple, not necessarily easy, and if you practice it and if you do it, it just works. I got to be honest with you, allows me to be spontaneous and fun and relaxed and be able to go anywhere I want on stage because I’m not worried about anything, I’m not stressed.
David Laroche: I have other questions to ask you. How do you prepare your speeches?
Joseph McClendon: Again, I keep going back because I have a system. I have a format that I can prepare in minutes, if not seconds. This happens to me sometimes: I’ll go somewhere and I’ll be on the audience of somewhere and somebody is, “Hey, Joseph is here. Come up in here and say a few words.” And from the time that I leave the sit to the time that I hit the podium, I can put together what I’m going to say because I have a system to do that.
But the long answer to your question in terms of preparing, there is a before, during and after of any presentation. I don’t like to look at it as a speech, because a speech is just that, you’re just talking. I believe that in a presentation you’re going to connect with your audience through caring, through love and then you’re going to also deliver content. But then you’re going to touch them in an emotional place that makes them not just want to do something, but thrive on going and doing something because that’s when the change is made. It’s not just listening.
So I put all of my components, I put a beginning to the presentation, a middle, and then an ending all together. I have a little outline that I go through and I put it all in there. In that way I don’t have to rely on a script, I don’t have to rely on a preset thing and they’re all different. That makes it fun for me. It gets to be spontaneous.
First, that is what I do at home or before as I’m manufacturing the presentation. Before I go on stage, there are things that I say to myself, there are certain ways that I move my body and that I feel and then I just relax. Because of what I said before that I work for myself to be able to be calm, that kicks in automatically. I don’t have to make myself that way. It kicks on automatically. Then I prepare myself, say a few things and rock and roll.
David Laroche: Thank you very much.
Joseph McClendon: You’re welcome. Thank you. I don’t think I’ve ever had anybody ask me all of those questions about presentations. But it’s poignant now because we’re creating something to teach other people that. We call it the “P Factor”, by the way, the “Presentation Factor”.
David Laroche: I love that! I would love to know, because you’re not the first one to read “Think and Grow Rich”, there is a lot of people who have read this book, and not everyone are succeeding. I wonder a lot why some people have the content, they follow great leaders, they have their books, they have the audio books and they don’t succeed. I would like to know that to help more my audience.
Joseph McClendon: Here’s what I would say. The simple answer is the reason that they don’t succeed is because they don’t apply what they learned. We’ve all heard the same that, “Knowledge is not power,” and it’s true. Knowledge is just potential power. There’s knowledge in books. Somebody told me that—I believe this—that 80 % of all of the knowledge since the dawn of time is on the internet somewhere. If you want to know how many stitches there are in a soccer ball you can look up that information is there. And the how-to information, the how-to books, it’s called “shelf help”, instead of “self help”. People get the book and they put on their shelf and they may read it but they don’t do what’s in the book.
I think the biggest difference in why people don’t and why people do is in the actual activity that they do with the knowledge. I always say that knowledge is stored information; wisdom is knowledge that is acted upon. It’s applied knowledge. So if you learn something, do something about it. That’s the way it was in “Think and Grow Rich” and every single book that I write and every single presentation that I do, I’m going to have people do something in the moment and then I’m going to give them something to do after. So you get a result.
In “Think and Grow Rich”, in that book, it said, “Do this, this, this and this.” And that’s what I did. As soon as I did I felt better and things started to change.
David Laroche: You suggest reading the book and whatever it says you do it until you don’t follow … the next before.
Joseph McClendon: If that’s what the instruction is. It’s called discipline. And discipline to me means doing the prescribed activity as prescribed, even if it’s difficult no matter what. I repeat myself, “Doing the prescribed activity as prescribed, even and especially if it’s difficult no matter what.” That means if it says to lift that weight 50 times and then rest for 10 minutes and then lift it another 50 times then you do it. And when it’s repetition number 20 and it’s hard to do and if the instruction said to do it 50 times, do it 50 times no matter what. An activity means, “Don’t just do it once, do it how many times it said to do it.”
To answer your question is a two-part answer. The reason why more people aren’t successful—for a lack of a better term—is because they don’t do what they know, what they’ve learned. But the underlying question is, “Why don’t they do what they know?” That answer is multifaceted because people are multifaceted. People may feel like they can, people may feel tired, people may not have the energy, people may feel like because something somebody said to them when they were 10-years old bothers them, people may have fear of failure, fear of success. There are a whole lot of different reasons, but all of those reasons can be dealt with.
I would say there’s a difference between simplicity and ease. I’m not saying that things are easy, but they’re easier than the school of hard knocks to do it once or twice or to do it in the very beginning to get that stuff out of the way. So life is much simpler than we’ve been led to believe. If you do the simple things now, then it’s going to be easier for you later.
David Laroche: Thank you very much. What do you think about the food and the power of food in your body?
Joseph McClendon: It is a tossup for me between what is more important: the personal development side, teaching that, or teaching people the health and wellness, because they’re both important. However, I will say if you don’t have your health, you’re not going to perform as well over here. If you have diminished health, then you’re going to have diminished energy and all kinds of things are going to be as a result of that. But just from a basic format, if we’re looking at the ability to go further and faster, your health, your wellness is a direct link to that. So I would say you got to have this foundation but most people don’t want to hear that.
Most people want to hear, “How do I make more money? How do I get a better relationship? How do I get a better car? How do I do all that stuff now?” And they’ll drive themselves crazy, staying up late and run their health down trying to get here. The old saying is, “Some people pick the fruit, and some people study the root.” I say, “Pick the fruit and eat it while you study the root.” Do them both at the same time.
Let’s get healthy while you do the other. I’m not saying you got to stop your goals and everything to get healthy right now. I’m saying let’s do it all at the same time. And you’ll move further faster.
David Laroche: What will be the difference when we eat healthy? Because we see some people who are succeeding without healthy food and they think, “Oh, I can do the same.” So why, according to you, we have to have healthy food?
Joseph McClendon: Well, there are exceptions to the rule. However, there are no exceptions in the end and I’ll give you an example: Bill Gates. For many, many years I remember hearing about him that he lived on junk food and all that stuff and his health suffered. In the end it took his life. And I know a lot of people. As I said, there are exceptions. There are people that can smoke cigarettes into their hundreds and never get sick, but the vast majority of people are not going to be able to do that.
My belief is that what we need to do is to take and look at how we cause ourselves to function at our optimum. If you got a Ferrari, you don’t put water in the gas tank. You put the best gasoline you possibly can. Why? Because that car was designed to run on the best gasoline. This body that we have is designed to run on the best food. You can put other food into it and is still going to run, but is not going to run as well. I think that in this day and age, it’s absurd for people to go, “Wait a minute, I’ll just eat junk food and expect the best.” It’s absurd. It’s logical to say that I can eat junk food or not eat so well or not take care of myself and I can still succeed. Yes, you can do that but is going to be harder. It’s going to be much harder.
David Laroche: Some people say that there is a link between healthy food and the ability to be connected to a kind of spirituality. What do you think about that?
Joseph McClendon: I think the same. First, I want to point out that I believe is not just the food. There are eight principles. I call this the “Eight Pillars of Health and Wellness”: the air we breathe, the water we drink, the food we eat, the thoughts we think, the moves we make, the words we speak, the things we seek, the sleep we take and the thoughts we think. What happens is when you change any one of those things, then it changes everything. A little shift in one of those areas would change everything.
So food is one portion of it. It’s a big portion of it, but the most important thing is the air we breathe. Try to stop breathing. It’s over! But the reality is in one of our workshops I teach people how to breathe. Most people don’t. We think we breathe all the time, but most people, in my opinion, about 80 % of the people out there are getting two-thirds, and maybe even a half of the oxygen that they can get and it’s the most important thing. Your cells need it, you need it for energy, you need it for all that stuff.
They’re breathing in such a way that they’re a third to half less oxygen than their body should be having. If you just change that one thing, change how they breathe, their head gets clearer, they think better, they have more energy.
David Laroche: Do you have an exercise that you can show on this video?
Joseph McClendon: I guess I can. Watch this. I think you saw me at one of the workshops, but it may be different. Take a deep breath right now.
David Laroche: Now?
Joseph McClendon: Yes, right now. One more. You’re actually better than most because here’s what most people do. Again, I’m not going to assume that because you saw me do this at the health seminar this is the reason why, but you’re breathing better than most. But here’s how most people breathe. I’m going to exaggerate, but most people when I say, “Take a deep breath,” they go like this. They breathe up here. But our lungs are shaped like this: they’re bigger on the bottom, they’re narrow at the top.
What happens is when people breathe like that, shoulders come up, chest comes out, head comes back and their stomach goes in. it’s the optimal way that lungs are supposed to work. The stomach should come out when we breathe. And yours is, by the way, a little bit when you’re doing that and it’s because we’re filling up the bottom of our lungs first, and is our diaphragm that pulls down that makes air come in. When most people breathe and they’re pushing the diaphragm in, which is cutting off the bottom third of their lungs and they’re not getting the oxygen that they need. And it’s the most important thing that we do.
You’ll see people they’re tired all the time. If I just show people how to breathe and then teach them the process of doing it, X amount of times a day, then it won't take very long before they get used to it because they feel good and their body will adapt to doing it better.
So we call it “Deep Diaphragmatic Breathing” versus “Stress Breathing of Top”.
David Laroche: So we have to learn to breathe with this part.
Joseph McClendon: Yes. A simple way of saying it is breathe into your stomach. People say, “It is not where my stomach is,” but I don’t breathe air into it but if you allow yourself to do it, then your stomach has to come out because it displaces your intestine, your guts and all that stuff to free your diaphragm to come down as we are supposed to.
Watch a baby sleep, or watch any human being sleep. When we lay down that’s where our creator made us so that when we’re laying prone, when we’re laying up we have to breathe that way, and that’s the most creative time, that’s the time where our body is rejuvenating itself and all those things.
David Laroche: How many times per day you suggest?
Joseph McClendon: All day. The exercise I have people do is to breathe a certain way. I always tell people, “Get your cell phone and every time it off stop and take ten deep diaphragmatic breaths. Do it, reset it for another hour and then do it again. Pretty soon you’ll find yourself breathing that way normally.” But you got to do it.
David Laroche: Becomes an unconscious habit.
Joseph McClendon: Anything that’s repeated is going to become a habit.
David Laroche: You are talking about sleep. What do you suggest about sleep?
Joseph McClendon: Well, is not so much as suggestion as much as a result of doing several other things a certain way or a different way than most of us. Your sleep will change. I sleep about four and a half, maybe five hours a night and I’ve slept that way for 25 years now. I wake up energized and excited and alert and I go right to sleep—I have no sleeping problems at all. I sleep on airplanes. The longest that I sleep these days is when I get on an airplane. I can get on an airplane and flight to France and I’ll sleep from the time I leave Los Angeles to the time I land in France straight through. So I can sleep as long as I want to but I don’t have to. I wake up every morning with no alarm clock eyes wide open.
David Laroche: Because of these eight factors. Other people have fears. How do you overcome fears?
Joseph McClendon: Because we only have a little bit of time, the quick answer is, it’s always three things. Number one, know what you want. That’s a number one thing and I’ll give you an example. People come to me all—I’ve done this for many, many years how people get over fears and phobias and that kind of things. Traditionally I’ll ask somebody, “What do you want?” And they’ll go, “I don’t want to be afraid of dogs anymore.” And I’ll say, “What do you want?” And they’ll go, “I’m afraid of dogs and I don’t want to be afraid of dogs anymore.” “What do you want?” And they go, “I want to lose my fear of dogs.” I’ll go, “Great. What do you want?” And they’ll go, “I’m telling you…” “No, you’re telling me what you don’t want.”
Because I know because they’re going “fear of dogs, fear of dogs” they’re telling me what they don’t want. So if I get them to the point that I go, “What do you really want?” And they go, “I want to be able to hold a puppy and feel excited about it.” Then three things happen. Number one, I know I’m putting them in the right direction and I can give them what they want, not what I say they want. They feel it, which is number two. Then number three, they experience what they want and I can capture that. It’s not a joke.
I always tell people, “If you have fear of dogs, guess what’s going to be in my office when you come there: a dog. You got a fear of heights; we’re going to go up skydiving. You got a far of closed places we’re going to go to an elevator.” I practice something called neurosciences—and versus taking your time and stretching it out through time. I’ve worked with a lot of people who have been in front of other therapists and been with other therapists for years and years and haven’t got any result.
So number one, helping figure out what they want. Number two, help them figure out what it is that stops them and is not the dog. If they say they’re afraid of dogs, is not. It’s the thought of the dog. It’s not the dog. Because those people are horrified when there are no dogs around, they spin their lives,—I’m just using dogs as an example—sheltering themselves and keeping themselves away from dogs. So is it the fear of dogs? No, it’s the thought of the dog. And as soon as you get people to recognize is themselves that are doing it to them, not the dog, then that’s step number two: help figure out what’s stopping them. Then number three is to bust open that thought and emotional pattern, meaning, help them while they’re in it get away from it. We call it a “pattern interrupt”, because if I interrupt somebody when they’re doing anything, they’re no longer where they were.
If right now you and I are talking and an explosion happens over there, guess what? Our focus is over there but we’re not in this conversation, but that’s a very valuable moment because while we’re going, “What’s going on over here?” we’re very curious, we’re open. The fourth step is to put into that place what they want. So they take from the very beginning and to put it in there. I’m giving you the broad strokes but they’re in that place.
Then the next step is to condition it, do it over and over again to make it so that that is the place, the nervous system defaults to. And do it over and over again to condition it, so pretty soon they’re no longer it. Somebody comes in and they got a fear of dogs, and in less than an hour’s time they’re going to be holding a puppy.
David Laroche: How do you do pattern interrupt, for example, with a fear of dog?
Joseph McClendon: A thousand different ways.
David Laroche: Do you have an example?
Joseph McClendon: Yes. They offer a glass of water in somebody’s face or yell at them or have somebody else walk in or set up a stage to have this thing if they still have it, that is a can of air with a horn on it that’s sitting underneath my desk and all you have to do is push that and all of a sudden that’s going to interrupt their pattern. Anything. I’ll jump and I’ll grab them, shake them around, I mean, I’m spontaneous. I’ll do anything.
David Laroche: At this time, what do you do after? Because sometimes I coach people in one-to-one. So you interrupt the pattern and then what do you do?
Joseph McClendon: Well, the easy answer is to have them experience what they experience in the very beginning. In other words, when I help them figure out what it is that they want and they go, “Oh, I want to hold a puppy.” Then in that moment they’re already there. So you can do it through anchoring, you can do it through repetition. Most of the time is an anchoring process, which is to bring them right back to that place. Just go, “Calm down right now. What do you really want?” And they’ll go, and then we’ll do it again.
Again, there’s so much more to it and I’m certainly not doing justice by saying, “Just do these certain things.” There’s quite a bit more to it.
David Laroche: It’s a … process. Do you have sometimes bad mood?
Joseph McClendon: I’m not going to say I have a bad mood. What I have is—I’m human.
David Laroche: You are? Really?
Joseph McClendon: Yes. Contrary to public belief. I have times when there are a lot of things that can happen. I’ll give an example. Here’s what I would consider what you might call “a bad mood”. Something stressful would happen, perfect example. So I’ll say yes, however, mine are extremely, extremely short habitually now. And that’s what we want.
David Laroche: Here’s my second question. How do you shift it?
Joseph McClendon: Well, because of what I’ve done, a process that I’ve done, several processes. One in particular is something I call “Stop technique”, which is what I think we teach at our seminars, which is to replace a bad emotion, maybe a recurrent emotion—fear, anger, frustration, whatever—with a great emotion. And make it so that the bad emotion, or something that happens, triggers you to feel good. I’ll give you an example how it works. It’s a long process—too long for us to explain here—but I’ll give an example of the end result.
I was just in Italy three weeks ago and my promoter and business partner and I had to fly to London. So the car picked us up at the hotel in Italy and drove us an hour and a half to the airport, got out of the car, went through security, went to passport check and I realized I didn’t have my phone. I left my phone in the car. In that moment I was in a bad mood, I panicked. I’m in a foreign country, my business partner had already gone through the line, he was already on the other side and for I second I was, “I got no phone!” Have you ever lost your phone? But then within, seriously, ten or fifteen seconds of panicking my brain went, “Hey, now I get to get an iPhone 5.” And I quickly I got in a good mood.
I use that as an example because that’s pretty serious stuff losing your phone.
David Laroche: I did that two months ago in the taxi. The taxi was leaving with my iPhone 4. I have an iPhone 5 now.
Joseph McClendon: By the way, how long did it bother you that you didn’t have your phone? How long did you worry about it? Did you go, “Oh no, I don’t have my phone. What am I going to do?”
David Laroche: Maybe two hours.
Joseph McClendon: See? Me it was 10 seconds. What I’m saying that’s a result of what I teach. Because I believe I can't teach theory, I’ve got to practice what I preach. I’m not saying I was ecstatic about it, I was happy about it, but one of the things that I did because I was in a better mood now. But then my brain started to work.
And instead of worrying about it, my brain started to go, “What do I do?” so I went into the lounge and I send an e-mail to my business partner. I know he looks at his e-mails on his phone and he called the taxi company and they were too far gone. They got the phone and then they overnight it to us to the next destination. So not only did I feel better, but I got to think clearer and I don’t have that worry and that stress.
David Laroche: Great. You build a can of habits to shift quickly and it’s easier.
Joseph McClendon: Yes. It’s one of the things that we teach at one of our workshops called “The A Factor”, which is what I call “emotional mechanics”, which is a way to manage your own emotions. Manage meaning to predetermine what your response is—and response is different than reaction. Reaction is no thought. Response is you think about it, even if it’s for a second. So predetermine what your response is going to be to anything that happens. Therefore when bad things happen, unfortunate things happen or things happen that are undesirable, you know what your response is going to be.
Like I said, on stage for me, for most people they go, “You got to go in front of 10,000 people,” most people will be afraid. For me it’s just like, “Cool.” I feel it right now. I literally get calmed down because I condition myself to be that way. It’s a very simple tool.
David Laroche: Thank you. Your book, can I take it to show it?
Joseph McClendon: “Get Happy Now”.
David Laroche: “Get Happy Now”. So, how can I get happy now? I am.
Joseph McClendon: You are right now.
David Laroche: Yes. How can people get happy now?
Joseph McClendon: Get the book and read it, number one. Number two, do what’s in the book. I wrote the book with specific things to do in the book, but because we’re on camera I’ll tell you a couple of things.
First off, happiness is not the goal, happiness is the journey. It’s not, “I’m going to work really hard and then I’m going to be happy.” That’s recipe for disaster. Everybody has their own brand of happiness and it can be used in many, many aspects of our lives.
I do a lot of business training and businesses bring me in because they want to help for themselves and for their teams to be more effective. More effective at what they do, if it’s making something or typing something or searching something or sales or whatever it is, they want to be more effective. But it’s still the same thing. They’re not effective because they’re not in what I call “the zone”. I work with sports figures and people from all walks of life, so I use a sports example. When you work with somebody, say, like a basketball player or golf or something like that, they always say the same thing, “When I’m in the zone. Nothing else matters. I’m focused on this,” and everything slows down. That’s called being happy.
The example I like to use is when I grew up I was quite a lazy kid. I didn’t like to do my homework; I didn’t like to do my chores. I was just lazy. And I hated with a passion to get up early in the morning. School days, forget it, it was just horrible. It was just how I was as a kid. But I used to love to go fishing. We grew up in Hawaii and I loved to go fishing. I couldn’t tell you what’s seven times seven was. I couldn’t tell you what any of the multiplications, but if you asked me what kind of fish that was or what it ate or what it looked like I could tell you everything. If I knew I was going to go fishing the next morning, I’d get my work done, I’d get my homework done and I’d get up at 4:30 in the morning while it was dark outside with no alarm clock because I was happy. That level of happiness.
And all I’m saying now is everybody has that in their lives in many different things. Even if it is relaxing or watching television, you have an area of your life that if money and time were no object you’d do it all the time. So through the neuroscientists there’s something called “neuroplasticity”, meaning how our brain is flexible to take the same emotion called happiness and put it in the areas where you’re not effective. In other words, sales people have fear of rejection. What if they can take that place where they have no fear and put it in there. I just call happiness. It’s different for everybody, but most people don’t know what it is.
If I ask 100 people what it is that makes you happy they always go like this, “Well, my kids make me happy. No. I like to ride my motorcycle.” And they guess at it, which means they don’t know. It’s not right at the tip of their tongue. Again, I’m not trying to sell books, but when you read the book you get the opportunity to list it and put it down exactly what it is and now we have a menu to go to. So when they go, “What makes me happy? Why my children make me happy? I like to go skiing. I love to be with my wife or my husband. I love to shoot bow and arrow.” And they got all the stuff right there but as they seek it and as they think about it, they feel it and that’s the important part. It’s for people to recognize that getting happy now is simple as thinking about what makes you happy.
You’re happy right now. Anybody can do it. I always jokingly say that I don’t care how bad in mood you’re in, how depressed you are, if you value money and I give you a million dollars you’re going to get happy. You’re going to go, “Woah! Thanks!” You’re not going to be sad anymore. So getting happy now is not really the question, it’s getting happy, staying happy long enough to do a process so that the happiness becomes your default.
What I just told you about the phone is because I was happy. It’s just that I got, “Well, I got to get a new iPhone because now I have a reason to get an iPhone 5.” So I lost my iPhone 4 because I got happy.
David Laroche: I would love to have your opinion about … It was a challenge for me to come to the US and meet so many amazing people. It was one of my written dreams two years ago. I am doing it and it’s amazing because I’m in the greatest place in the world, in a street in La Valencia, is wonderful and I’m reaching my goal. Sometimes I felt less happiness than before. It was hard for me to feel that. I’m reaching my goal and I’m not happy.
Joseph McClendon: I’m going to tell you why and then I’m going to tell you what to do. Here’s the reason why. It’s because you didn’t set what the next thing is. In other words, the old example is when the men that went to the moon, when they came back to Earth most of them got depressed. Because what do you do after you’ve gone to the moon?
What makes people happy is what you’re going to get, what’s going to happen, what you’re looking forward to. Remember, it’s the journey, it’s not what you get. So you’re going, “I got my goal and I’m not happy.” Proof! It’s not the goal that makes you happy. It’s the achieving the goal.
So that’s why, but here’s what you do to change it. What’s next for you? What’s the next greatest thing? You shared with me before you got all this stuff and now you’re going to take all this information from all these wonderful people that you’ve gotten all these information from and you’re going to put it in a place where other people can access it. What do you think about that? How do you feel about that? How do you feel about when that’s done?
Look at you. Your eyes went up like that and you got happy. That’s what you’re after. So the key to it is, and by the way, that’s going to come to fruition too. There’s going to be a day when that’s done. So instead of waiting next time until that’s done, plan something ahead of it.
I was in a Europe tour about three weeks ago and I was in Finland and they kind of asked me the same question. I said, “Well, I set myself up to feel happy all the time.” I said before I’m a musician, and still love to play music, and one of my favorite instruments is bass guitar. So the year before last I said, “I’m going to complete my collection.” And there were four new bass guitars that I wanted. People go, “Why do you need more than one? Or why do you need more than one pair of shoes?” You need them.
They’re very expensive, they’re very rare and they’re custom made. So instead of going, “Make me these four basses,” what I said was, “Make me one.” And it took a year to be made. So I ordered all four, actually I ordered three of them and I had them delivered. One was a year and then another one was six months after that and another one six months after that. Then I just ordered one just the last and it’s going to be done six months from now.
So guess what? For two years I get to go, “I get to get another bass.” And as silly as that sounds, I’m happy. And in the back of my mind is going, that’s what I’m going towards. People can do that. You don’t have to get a bass or anything expensive. Whatever it is that you want place it in your subconscious mind that you’re going to get that, that you’re going to go after but to carry it on a stick and it’s one way to keeping an undercurrent of happiness because it’s expectation of something wonderful happening.
So instead of waiting until you get this goal of having all this information in this site, what’s after that? Keep it going.
David Laroche: Great. I love that.
Joseph McClendon: Yes. It works.
David Laroche: How can people follow you?
Joseph McClendon: A couple of ways. I have a website.
You can get the book, you can get this book on Amazon. By the way, again, I’m such a stickler on I want to make sure that people do it, the book doesn’t just come with the book, but I set it up to when you go there and you get the book there’s a link and there are videos of how to do the exercises. You can actually get a free chapter of the book if you go to success.com. You’ll find the book on there or you can go to Amazon and you can get the book and follow my suggestion to do is to get the e-book—you can get the e-book, you can get the hardcopy, I say get them both.
Get the hardcopy and listen to it while you read it because you can underline. You will want to do that. But the most important thing is you just do what’s in the book. I can be reached at makeyourfaith.com or josephmcclendon.com.
We’ve got lots of stuff on Youtube and things like that as well, so I’m pretty easy to find.
David Laroche: Julie has two questions for you. I’ll come back with my last question. You will love this question.
Julie: You’re preaching about education.
Joseph McClendon: Are you an educator?
David Laroche: She … one.
Julie: I am interested in education on how we can improve it. So I ask this question to lots of people. My first question is about education. According to you, how could we improve education?
Joseph McClendon: Make it more fun. Everybody learns differently. I have four things. When I go to any audience and I make a request to the audience to do these four things. Number one, have fun. We have five senses and they’re all input senses and we input more, we take it more when we’re having fun. We take in more either when we’re having fun or we’re scared to death. So rather let’s have fun.
I studied superlearning many years ago. I taught at the University of Southern California for several years and one of the things in superlearning that’s where they teach youngsters how to do professional things—play violin and piano and college courses and things like that—and what they found is that all of us would learn most of what we learn for the whole rest of our lives between the ages of 0 to 12 years old. One of the reasons why children learn so much and learn so fast because they’re always having fun. Because when they’re having fun, eyebrows are up or things like that we are alert more and we take in more. That’s number one.
Number two, go with an open mind. In other words, expect to be challenged and welcome the challenge. And I’m saying this to your question on how to improve it. It’s the teachers that need to learn these things, to teach this way, to have fun at doing it. Part of it is they got to be fun themselves. Number two, the teachers to teach the children to have an open mind and the teachers to have an open mind about learning and about teaching because so many times you go with the “It’s got to be this way, it’s only this way.” Well, if you got 100 kids then you got a third of those kids that learn auditorily, you got a third of those kids that learn visually and you got a third of those kids that learn kinesthetically. And if you’re only teaching to the kids that are going to learn auditorily then you’re going to miss the whole rest of the class. So you got to be open minded.
The next thing is to engage and interact with them. It’s not just about them just sitting in the seat. It’s about moving their bodies, getting them move around and to ask them questions and cause them to engage with you and you engage with them as well. Those are the best teachers.
And the last thing is, my request to people is that I believe that anybody that’s ever been successful at anything, anybody, has always had a coach, a mentor or a teacher that they’ve allowed that coach, mentor and teacher to push them beyond what’s comfortable. So don’t be afraid to push your students as well and make them uncomfortable. That old saying of, “An undisturbed student or client will not buy,” it’s true. If they’re just content then they’re not going to do anything. There’s half a dozen movies of the bullying in the class and the teacher finally gets through by making them uncomfortable, putting them on the spot and then that person changes. So one of the things I suggest and I’m not afraid to do is to make people uncomfortable. You got to.
Julie: It’s good. Thank you.
Joseph McClendon: You’re welcome.
Julie: My second question is about your vision of the world. What could be the three actions human beings could do to make this world a better place to live?
Joseph McClendon: A simple one. Love, love, love. It’s the truth. It’s just like from that that’s where happiness is, that’s where our activity and all those things will respond from and that’s where the people feel it and we people feel it and they feel loved then they’re going to do more. If they do more then they’ll have more. But I’ll say this, that those of us that dare to dream while the rest of the world is having a nightmare, we’re not only going to inherit and get the things that we want to make happen, but we’re the leaders for other people to follow.
As the old song says, “What the world needs more now is love, more love.” So I know that’s kind of a fluffy answer, but I’ll make it a little bit more specific. Number one is obviously care and love people more. Number two, care and love yourself more. Number three, get off your butt and do something for somebody else, because sitting here and caring and all those things don’t do anything.
You know, when I was quite young my mother, one of the things that she did with her children was she forced us, when we were little, to go around door to door and collect money for what’s called the St. Jude’s Cancer Organization. Then she would also, every summer, would go to the poor part of town, make friends with a family and adopt their kids—a boy and a girl—for the summer.
We hated it for the first couple of times because we wanted to have our fun in summer. We got this kid to tag along, but what we learned was to care about other people because that person didn’t have—we weren’t wealthy, we didn’t have money ourselves but to care about somebody else it taught myself and my sister to do something for other people and that’s what felt good because it didn’t take very long for us to go, “Oh, this feels real good because this kid who didn’t have anything would look up to me and go, ‘Show me how to do that.’” And it made me feel good, it made him feel good. And by the way, a couple of those children contacted me later on in life and said, “Thank you because what you did for us changed our life and we’re different as a result.” So those are my three things.
Julie: Thank you. It’s great.
Joseph McClendon: You’re welcome.
David Laroche: I come back with my questions.
Joseph McClendon: I love this. You guys are very well prepared. This is nice. I do a lot of interviews and most people are like, “Well… Joseph…”
David Laroche: Thank you very much. Maybe is because we love to do these interviews. Do you have some life lessons you would like to share to us?
Joseph McClendon: I have these simple rules if you will. I’ve got lots of life lessons, like don’t pull into a dark parking lot at night no matter what when there’s three ugly guys ready to kick your butt. That was a life lesson.
I guess maybe I’ll answer your question this way. I’ll say I have some very basic life advice and they are “Live, love, laugh, learn, lighten the heck up!” You know what that means? It’s you’re on this planet to live. Live doesn’t mean sitting down watching television—or as I call it, “the electronic income reducer”. Live means get out and live your life. You only got one of them. Move your body, interact with other people, do things. The first question that you asked me about the book and what I learned in the book was to do, don’t just learn, don’t just sit, you do something. Live your life.
Love, we already talked about that. Love yourself, love as many people as you possibly can. It’s why we’re here for. Love is happiness. It’s what makes us human beings as human beings, it’s what we’re all after. Find a way to do as much of it as you possibly can.
Laugh for all of the right reasons, meaning when we laugh we’re healthier, we’re happier, it makes the blood flow, we breathe better and all those things. Laugh as much as possible. Create the energy, we attract more.
Learn, always be a student. To this day I still spend a lot of money on seminars and workshops and books and recordings and things like that. Because the day you stop learning is the day you start going to the other direction. Learning again does not mean sitting in front of the television and watching a sitcom or some other show. I’m not knocking them but use it with moderation. Learn stuff. At the end of the day you should say, “What have I learned?” and you should go back over and you should go back and say, “This is what I learned.” The mind is the most unbelievable computer and it’s got endless storage. I study now people that are in their 100s, I’m met someone who is 107-years old, sharp as a tack and I asked, “What makes you so sharp as opposed to I see 67-year old people who are just they’re done.” They always say the same thing, “Because I learn, because I’m always growing, because I’m always curious.” So learn.
The last, last thing is lighten up. Don’t take everything so serious. I was doing another interview a few weeks ago and they said, “What do you have to say about all this violence that’s going on?” And I said, “Well, what do we expect? We have spoons that fed three generations of children, violence in videogames and movies and so on and so forth and we talk that the most important thing is to care about only yourself and all those things and so this is the result.” That’s the result of all of that but it doesn’t have to stay that way.
What I mean by that it’s honestly time for people to just relax. It’s going to be OK. I guarantee you, whoever is watching this right now, I promise you the sun is going to come up tomorrow. If you’re in the UK you might not see it… But lighten up, it’s going to be OK. Whenever you’re most stressed, stop and take a deep breath and just say to yourself, “It’s all going to be OK,” and lighten up! You don’t have to take things so seriously.
Live, love, laugh, learn and lighten up!
David Laroche: I love that. I have a serious question for you. I ask you to stay serious please. How can I become a loser? Do you have some advice?
Joseph McClendon: Seriously?
David Laroche: Do you have tips to do that?
Joseph McClendon: To do that? Yes. Turn on the television, play videogames and just do nothing.
Keep a close mind to all the things that I said before.
Don’t have fun.
Have a close mind.
Do not allow yourself to learn.
Do not allow somebody to push you.
Don’t allow yourself to be uncomfortable.
Stay complacent and you will become a loser. Period.
David Laroche: Great.
Joseph McClendon: And give up. Stop! The amount of people who fail is directly proportionate to the amount of people who gives up.
David Laroche: So you have to learn to give up.
Joseph McClendon: Yes. Unfortunately we’re being taught that every single day. That’s my answer.
David Laroche: Great. I love that. I will do it.
Joseph McClendon: Don’t!