A good leader leads with radical honesty in a place where everybody can grow to be their best self. Joining Alicia Couri on today’s podcast is success mindset coach David Neagle. David is the Founder of the multimillion-dollar global coaching company Life is Now, Inc., helping thousands of entrepreneurs, experts, and self-employed professionals gain the confidence and find the right mindset to increase their revenue and turn their endeavors into 7 and 8-figure ventures. If you want to build your dream business and life, you wouldn’t want to miss this episode as Alicia and David talk about the mindset of a leader.
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The Mindset Of A Leader With David Neagle
My guest is the amazing David Neagle. I’m excited to have him here with me because I have been in his world for the past years. He doesn’t know this, but he’s responsible for a lot of the changes I’ve made, a lot of the growth that I’ve made in my life. In fact, in his book, I have notes everywhere in that book. I keep it so I can refer to it all the time when I need to. Let me tell you a little bit about David. David is the Founder of the multimillion-dollar global coaching company Life is Now, Inc., helping thousands of entrepreneurs, experts, and self-employed professionals gain the confidence and find the right mindset to increase their revenue, turning their endeavors into 7 and 8-figure ventures.
Being in the coaching and mentorship industry for many years, David has worked alongside well-known mentors like Bob Proctor and Tony Robbins. His clients include many well-known people, including New York Times number one bestselling author, Jen Sincero. Because of the results his clients have achieved along with his dedication, David’s coaching has expanded to more than 30 countries. He has been featured on Forbes, CBS, NBC, Wall Street Journal, Inc., Entrepreneur, and Fox. He’s also the bestselling author of The Millions Within, a book focusing on intention, focus, and awareness to build your dream business and life. Welcome to the show, David Neagle.
Thank you for having me. It’s an honor to be here.
One of the first questions I always ask everyone is, what is your leadership philosophy?
It’s an interesting thing because philosophy is leading by example, first of all. All of the decisions that I make have to be made for the team, for the company. It’s not about individual decisions as much as what is best for the entire company? The idea is it’s leading with honesty. It’s radical honesty in a place where everybody can grow to be their best self.
I’ve heard some say there needs to be this transparency and radical self-responsibility to be a leader. It’s like, “The buck stops with me, regardless of what happens or who did what.”
Everything is my fault. I take responsibility for everything. If somebody makes a mistake, I think to myself, “How did I not communicate this correctly? How did I not create the right context?” I’ll hold somebody accountable. It always comes back to me first so that I can continue to grow. That also inspires other people. They feel that they have a safe place to be their best. They’re not afraid to make honest mistakes.
That’s true. When someone feels like their job is on the line, “I have to do this perfectly.” They’re not giving you their best because they’re afraid to make a mistake. That does not translate into a good product or a good end product. I’ve heard you talk about building and growing your confidence and that’s something that impacted me because I came from low confidence myself. Through listening to a lot of your work, I’ve been able to transform a lot of that and step out. How do you see a leader or someone who wants to become a good leader? How can they build their confidence? Each level requires a new level of confidence that you have to step into.When you have faith and the desire to do something, the confidence develops. Click To Tweet
Confidence is a funny thing. If you look at a child, when a child is developing confidence, they’re developing confidence by this desire to grow in some way, like if they’re walking or talking or doing something at school or sports or whatever that they’ve never done before. Through the repetition of doing those things and making corrections to get it right, they develop the confidence in being able to do it. People always say, “How can I get the confidence first?” My philosophy on this is that you have faith and the desire to do something.
The confidence develops as the decision of, “How am I going to show up in whatever it is that I’m doing today? How do I want to show up in that and continuing to grow?” As you move forward, you have to be open to where you’re weak and where you’re not doing well. Think about, “How do I have to grow here? Who do I need to be? What does my attitude need to be toward this thing?” Being open to feedback and to criticism. The whole idea in a person’s mind is, “I’m not the result. The result is the result. I need to look at the result without taking the result personally.” If we detach from that and think to ourselves, “What do I need to be doing and have to continue to move forward?” we will allow ourselves to get into that confident state.
Let’s go into that, “I’m not the result.” Many people beat themselves up if they don’t win or if there’s a failure or something else. They see it as their failure or they’re a failure. How do you detach yourself from the outcome?
The first thing is to understand that idea is a lie. Think about this. When you were learning to walk, nobody ever said to you, “Forget it. You’re never going to walk. You’re taking too much time. This is taking too long. Resolve yourself to sitting in a chair for the rest of your life.” As we start to move into society and the social structures, it becomes inconvenient if we make mistakes because it holds people back. They have to pay more attention. We get shamed and guilted for making mistakes. What that does is it automatically turns it inward like, “This is who I am because shame says there’s something wrong with me and guilt says there’s something wrong with what I’m doing.” The idea is to first understand that it’s a lie. Making mistakes is critical for growth. That’s how we grow. We grow by doing something we don’t know how to do. We make mistakes and we learn from the mistakes to be able to move forward. If we look at it, it’s part of the success process. It’s not part of the failure process at all. Failure is stopping. It’s not doing anything. It’s essential to the success process.
That is amazing because a lot of people don’t look at it that way. They don’t look at it as mistakes are necessary for growth. That’s how you grow. That’s one of the things I learned from you. I’m not afraid to make mistakes. I’m not afraid to step out and do big things. It’s never a failure to me. It’s always, “I didn’t do that. That didn’t work out the way I wanted to, but let’s take a try at it this way. Let’s try it this way.” Keep learning as you grow because that’s how you grow. The idea of, “How am I showing up? How do I show up in this thing?” That can shift you from who you think you are to how you need to be.
What you have to know first though, and you have to be honest about this is, “Where am I?” You have to know two things to succeed. Number one is where you’re going. You have to have some idea of what the goal is. The hardest part is to be honest about where you are in your growth. The ego wants to either put you further ahead than you are or not exactly where you are, further behind. It does not want to look at, “Here’s an accurate picture of where I am.” If I can more understand where I am in my own growth, in my own maturity, both psychological and emotional, my own skillset, I know where to start to work on that process to grow. It requires radical honesty to do it.
Many leaders have said this, “Get some people that you can trust, that will give you excellent feedback.” Get 5 or 10 of them and ask their opinion, “Where do you see I can grow? Where do you see that I’m weak? Where do you see my shortfalls?” They’re not saying something bad about you. They’re giving you a great gift as to where you can begin to work. The faster you find out where you are, the faster you’ll get to where you want to go.
One of your programs about your blind spots helped me with that. It helped me be honest with where I am because I couldn’t see my own blind spots. Even in your book, you talk about your blind spots. It’s important to have that other opinion of someone you trust that can see those things. Not only the bad thing, sometimes we’re always thinking, “They’re going to criticize and see the bad things.” Some of the good things about you, you don’t even see in yourself. Those things are gold.
I’ve never heard anybody say that before. I’ve been doing this for a career. I don’t think I’ve ever had anybody say that but it is 100% true. When I started working with my mentor, Bob Proctor, back in the mid-‘90s, he asked me, “David, what do you want?” I said, “I want to be a millionaire.” I wanted a lot of other things, but that’s what I was focused on at the time. He said, “I’m going to ask you to do a bunch of things.” He saw my face go blank. He said to me, “You don’t think you can do it, do you? You don’t believe you can do it, do you?”
I thought for a minute and I said, “You’re right. I don’t think I believe I can do it.” He said, “You believe in my belief that you can do it.” He did a transfer of belief with me, which was amazing because it caused me to stop and go, “I don’t see this in me, but he does.” This man sees something in me that I don’t see in myself. He’s trying to get me to believe in something that he sees that’s there, but I haven’t recognized it yet. It was one of the greatest gifts that I’ve ever been given in my life.
Someone holding that space for you is priceless. For me, at least, it made me want to work towards their belief in me. I could pick up that belief in myself and then say, “I can do this.” It’s truly valuable when you have people around you that can do that for you. Speaking of some of those challenges that we can sometimes fall into, what have been some of the pitfalls that you’ve encountered in your own leadership journey? You can talk about yourself and then you can talk about things that you’ve seen happen over and over again with clients.
The biggest one was not educating myself fast enough around what it was to be a leader. When I started my business, I jumped from an upper management position for a petroleum company right into doing seminars, public speaking, coaching, the whole thing. I was doing it all myself. I was making sales, doing the traveling and booking everything.
As all solopreneurs do.
What I didn’t know was what I needed to be to build a team. I made the mistake of starting to build the team from where I was in my thinking, which was an error. I started hiring people like me. I was not hiring people for what they were good at. I didn’t even understand that. When I would hire them, I didn’t understand why they couldn’t do the job that they were hired to do. I would get frustrated with them. I didn’t know how to manage them correctly. I didn’t know how to lead them in any direction. It took a few years before I started to realize, “I don’t know what the hell I’m doing as far as being a leader, especially in this new endeavor that I’ve taken on.” I had to start to learn what that was. It was uncomfortable.
It caused me to have to grow in an area that I had not had to grow in before and look at things from a different way. When I grew up, transparency was not a good thing. I had a mother that was not good. Let me put that out there. You covered everything up. You covered your tracks so you didn’t get the craziness. I had to learn to be transparent with the people that worked with me about what I was going through, if I made a mistake. It was a huge growth level to be able to do that. Once I did it, then the team started to come together. I have an amazing team.You have to have a clear vision for where you’re going. The vision dictates what has to be done. Click To Tweet
You do have a phenomenal team. You are a mindset coach. You had that blind spot. You didn’t even see that. It’s important for coaches to have coaches to keep coaching them.
I did. I got a few coaches to help me understand what it was to be a leader. Plus, I started reading everything I could get my hands on. I started looking at other leaders in the world that inspired me and see if they had biographies or if there were videos on them. I did a deep dive, and I still do to this day. I constantly am studying leadership and what it takes to create an amazing team.
That’s great because there are many times people have this misnomer, “I am supposed to know how to do this. I’m supposed to know how to lead people.” No. It’s something you have to learn and grow into. You don’t get promoted to a leader and all of a sudden you know what to do. I appreciate that. I wanted to ask how were some of the clients that you have coached through this process as well. What is a common thing you went through and see? Do you see something else in leadership?
Number one, they don’t know what they don’t know. Almost everybody that I work with that’s a young entrepreneur suffers from having to do everything themselves. Probably the biggest problem is letting go of control. They’re somewhat successful based on their own efforts and their own knowledge and skillset, but they’re scared to death to turn any of that responsibility over to other people and help lead them into success for the entire organization. They get stuck there. I’ve seen people stuck there for years because they are scared to death to let go of control. They don’t know how to hire. It’s a lack of skillset and understanding of what that process is.
Especially if you grew up middle class or working class, it’s a tremendous value to be like, “I can do it all myself.” That value mindset is put out there. An entrepreneur has to have a completely different mindset. They have to have other people that are great to be able to do those things and then give them, empower them to be able to do it. That’s where I see the biggest challenge for most entrepreneurs.
Henry Ford, he’s like, “Surround yourself with people that are smarter than you. They can do the job better than you.” You just have to coordinate the team. That’s how you grow because you can be that visionary in that one. Stick to your real superpower. What is your gift to this world? You can stick with that and not have to deal with all the other stuff that you’re trying to do. You’re this multimillion-dollar global company. That’s not where it started. What is a day in the life of David Neagel look like?
I still do a lot of coaching. I’m the product in our company, for the most part. That’s both a blessing and a curse. I have to have other people do almost everything else because I spend most of my time fulfilling on that product and being the front end of the company. I have a couple of companies. I have Neagle Media and I have Life is Now.
You have The Successful Mind Podcast, which I love.
My day starts early in the morning. My day is rigid. Everything is scheduled, even in my personal life. I find that if you want to get a lot done and you want to stay focused, you have to schedule it based on how you want to live your life and then stick to that schedule. I’m up early.
That is big. You have to schedule everything in your life the way you want it to go. Many people, their life is scheduled around everything else and not the way they want to see how their life goes. That’s a big nugget for me.
When I say everything, all my downtime. My vacation is scheduled in. After a while, you get to know yourself. How much time off do I need? If I want to take a three-day weekend, all of that is scheduled in my calendar so that it’s always there and I don’t run myself down and that type of thing. When I’m focused on what I’m doing, I’m 100% in that activity. I don’t have to think about the next activity because that’s already scheduled. If I have to prepare for something, that’s put in the calendar. Everything gets done all the time. That’s what it’s like.
That’s great to know. That’s how you run a multimillion-dollar operation, through your schedule. I’ve had a mentor tell me that too, “Everything gets in the calendar.” That’s how they run their life.
I had a person say to me one time, early on when I first started studying, he said to me, “Show me your calendar and your checkbook and I’ll show you what your values are.” I was like, “That’s genius.” Where you’re spending your time and your money is what you value. Even with your personal life, if you want to have a great marriage, a great family, whatever other things that you’re doing, if you don’t put the time in to do that, if you don’t schedule it, you’ll finally be like, “I’m too tired. I can’t do it now.” That’s how things start to fall apart.
That’s a #Boom. Anything I didn’t ask you that you want to share about leadership and confidence?Within the belief system is meaning. Everything that's in your belief system, we have given some meaning to. Click To Tweet
It starts with the desire of what do you want to do with your life. The individual has to be clear on where they’re going and they have a clear vision for where they’re going. The vision dictates what has to be done. Your leader has to submit to the vision. We have to be obedient to the vision. If that’s how we’re creating our life, we’re saying, “I have a purpose. I have a vision for my life, my business, my family.” You have to create that vision and be specific as you can about it and then you have to submit to it. You don’t get a choice anymore once you step into this. If the vision says, “This is what you have to do. This is what you have to be.” That’s what you have to submit to. It is being obedient to the spiritual side of us and letting that guide us through our life into the success that we want and the value that we provide.
What are some of your favorite books? What are you reading? Readers are leaders.
No Rules Rules, the biography of Reed Hastings from Netflix. I finished that book. I started off with three books and I kept them on my desk constantly, especially in the first ten years when I was building the business. I referenced them all the time to teach from them. One is Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. Working With The Law by Raymond Holliwell.
I bought that because of you.
It’s an unbelievable book. It has such great truths in it. GOD Works Through Faith. I would also add to that You2. I could start going down a rabbit hole with a lot of different books. These three, plus You2, it was the core of how I built my belief system and what allowed me to work through challenges. One of the things that entrepreneurs go through, the leaders go through, is you’re going to have problems where your mind starts to mess with you. You don’t know, “How am I going to get the resources? How am I going to get the money? Where are the customers going to come from?”
Working With The Law does a lot with the law of polarity in there. They talk about, you can’t have a problem, a need, or a desire without the possibility of its fulfillment already existing. The fact that you’re aware of it shows that it’s in your universe somewhere. The idea is, “What do I need to do in my mind so that I can see it and recognize it? If I can’t see it, I can’t take advantage of the opportunity.” Those were the things that got me through the rough times in the business. It also helped me change the way that I was thinking. That became automatic. I think about everything based on those laws of truth and not by drama or fear or anything else. If a person is looking to start, those four books are phenomenal.
I love those. I listen to you talk about those books all the time, too. Since you brought it up, what is a belief system? Many people that I’ve encountered have beliefs and they don’t even think that they can change them. They think they’re ingrained in who they are, “I can’t think of something other than this. This is who I am.” What is a belief system?
Our belief system starts to get programmed in us from the moment of conception. From the moment of conception to about seven years old, we don’t have the ability to reject anything. Everything that’s going on around us goes in and forms the foundation of how we think. It starts the core of our belief. A belief is a set of ideas and patterns that allow our subconscious mind to keep us moving safely through life. The subconscious mind has only two things. One is to keep you alive and the other one is to procreate. That’s all it’s concerned with. It develops patterns based on, “Did this work? Did this not work? As long as a person is not dying, that’s a pattern that we’re going to replicate.”
Within the belief system is meaning. Everything that’s in your belief system, we have given some meaning to. Nothing has any meaning other than what human beings gave it. In order to change your belief system, you have to evaluate your meaning about something. Understand what the truth is that’s going to help you create the life that you want. Change the things about that belief system that are false. That requires some diligence study to be able to do that.
That’s where I had to go. I had to go back to the age of four to unpack and unravel some of the things that I believed about myself that I realized are not true. I had held them deeply as a belief that I couldn’t change them until I became aware of them. I had low confidence and all of that, but as a child, I was an amazing, bold, audacious little girl and then I had to trace back, “When did I lose that? What happened to me in that process that I became someone that wanted to hide from the world?”
Here’s another thing that’s important about this. Until you’re ready to accept responsibility for everything in your life, you won’t change your belief system. If you think that things are happening to you and you’re a victim, and I’m not saying that in a degrading way because it is prevalent in our world, this whole idea that people are victims.
Everything is being done to me.
Whenever we become victimized, the other thing or person has the power. We can’t change if they have the power. The only way to change is for us to take our power back and be like, “I accept responsibility for my experience in whatever this is. What’s causing me to have this experience? What’s causing me to have this repetition of this problem in my life?” We then can go in and do the hard work of confronting that stuff and changing it.
I could talk to you all day long, but I know you have a tight schedule.
I’m going right in the recording studio when we’re done.
I appreciate your time, David. I appreciate you coming on the show. Please listen to his podcast, The Successful Mind. That’s one great place to start. Get the book, The Millions Within, you need to read this.
You’re welcome. As we close, I want to remind you leaders out there to be bold, be brave. Step into your own audacious confidence to lead and we’ll see you next time.
- David Neagle
- The Millions Within
- Neagle Media
- The Successful Mind Podcast
- No Rules Rules
- Think and Grow Rich
- Working With The Law
- GOD Works Through Faith
About David Neagle
David Neagle is the founder of the multimillion-dollar global coaching company Life Is Now, Inc, helping thousands of entrepreneurs, experts and self-employed professionals gain the confidence and find the right mindset to increase their revenue, turning their endeavors into seven- and eight-figure ventures.
Being in the coaching and mentorship industry for more than 20 years, David has worked alongside other well-known mentors like Bob Proctor and Tony Robbins, and his clients include many well-known people, including New York Times #1 best-selling author Jen Sincero.
Because of the results his clients have achieved, along with his dedication, David’s coaching has expanded to more than 30 countries, and he has been featured on Forbes, CBS, NBC, Wall Street Journal, Inc, HLN, Entrepreneur and Fox. He is also the bestselling author of The Millions Within, a book focusing on intention, focus and awareness to build your dream business and life.