The Greatness Mindset with Lewis Howes


  • In today’s special episode, Brendon Burchard interviews Lewis Howes on his new book, The Greatness Mindset.
  • “I believe self-doubt is the killer of all dreams and is what ruins peoples lives. My intention and vision is to give people tools to overcome the doubt within themselves so they can authentically live a life that they desire.” – Lewis Howes
  • If you’re looking for motivation and guidance to build habits to achieve your biggest dreams, this episode is for you!
  • Watch the video to get the full interview!
  • Get Lewis’ book, The Greatness Mindset, here now: Get Lewis’ book, The Greatness Mindset, here now:


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[The following is the full transcript of this episode of Motivation With Brendon Burchard. Please note that this episode, like all episodes, features Brendon speaking extemporaneously–he is unscripted and unedited. Filmed in one take, Motivation With Brendon Burchard has become one of the most viewed unscripted, direct-to-camera self-help series in the history of YouTube. It has also been the #1 Podcast in all of iTunes and is regularly in the top podcasts in the Self-Help and Health categories around the globe. Subscribe to the free motivational podcast on iTunes or Stitcher.)

Brendon: Hey, it’s Brendon. Welcome to Motivation with Brendon Burchard. I have an unbelievable book recommendation for you today and interview with the great Lewis Howes. You know him as the host of the School of Greatness Podcast, a podcast I recommend to everybody. And he has a new book out called The Greatness Mindset. And here’s why Iove this interview right now. As I’m filming this to you, Lewis and I are at a multiday event that I’m hosting for a lot of the sort of the bigger names in the influencer creator industry. And what’s special about is most of them have been friends for a really long time, and I’ve gotten to really see and experience them grow into greatness. You know, many of them, no one knew who they were, and now they reach millions, well, collectively hundreds of millions of people every week. And so an incredibly influential group. And I’ve seen Lewis evolve so much over the last decade. We’ve been friends for a really long time. And what I love about what he has done with this book is he’s approached greatness in a very counterintuitive way. So much about how you heal and how you deal with your fears and how you choose to show up for others. I think it will surprise you. I think you will learn a lot about Lewis when you see him and all the success. And he’s a big guy. You make assumptions about him and then you’re going to see his heart on full display today in this interview. Check out this unbelievable interview with Lewis Howes, the author of the new book, The Greatness Mindset


Brendon: Hey, everybody, it’s Brendon and I’m here with Lewis Howes, author of the new book The Greatness Mindset. We’ve been jammin, It’s early morning here in Napa, California. We had a dramatic night last night with a bunch of friends. We’re here doing a mastermind, and I’m blessed to have you here, my friend. 


Lewis: Thanks for having me. I appreciate you, man. 


Brendon: Every time we get together, it’s a good time and great friendship. We learn from each other. And yeah, I’m just so blessed to have you here. 


Lewis: I’m grateful for you, man. I want to kick it off with you and just appreciate you for how generous you are. I’ve said this many times the last few days, but you, you know, I think your audience knows this, how giving you are because you give free content for the last 14 years, like every week consistently. And you say, “How can I give my best stuff?” But you really give to your friends and your community in the industry as well in a big way. You know, putting together an entire event was 30 something. I was here paying for everything, taking care of us. So I just really appreciate you bringing us together and being a connector. And I think one of the things about business and and really life that I’ve learned from you is the power of supporting people and accomplishing their goals. the power of helping people get clarity, helping people create connections, supporting and elevating people into accomplishing what they want. And it’s interesting because yesterday we did, you know, a roundtable and you did an amazing job teaching us a framework about business and life. And then also everyone went around. A bunch of people went around and shared what they’re up to, what they’re excited about, what they’re grateful for, and their biggest challenge. And you do a beautiful job, just facilitate. The interesting thing is a lot of people who had accomplished a lot of things and I’m not here call anyone out. But I was just noticing that a lot of people are trying new things they’ve accomplished a lot. They’re going to come a new season after COVID, trying to figure out what they want to do next, What is their new identity? What are they stepping into? Does the old them work for the future vision they have for their life? And now, sitting next to our friend Dean Graziosi, who’s a master at a lot of this stuff too, and he was just dropping gems on kind of giving people feedback. And I kept opening up a page to my book to Marta, my girlfriend next to me, on probably four or five different scenarios of people being so unclear of their their dreams. They were accomplished successful individuals who are all talented, but they weren’t clear on exactly what they wanted. And I wanted to make a distinction of something that I’ve learned over the last 15, 20 years of of experience from sports into the business world and building personal brand. I was really good at creating goals and dreams and accomplishing them in sports and then in business for the first, I guess, ten years of business. But there was always something missing. You know, It was like I was 80% of the way figuring it out. 


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: Where was I was able to accomplish goals. I didn’t have the fear of taking action and, you know, putting myself out there. I wasn’t afraid of success, but there was something missing. And it’s the difference between and when I want to share a scenario that I would love for you to break down with me and tell me what you think about it. The difference between success and greatness. And I think a lot of people want success. But what I have figured out is that success by itself is selfish. Success and goals and dreams are good. But if it doesn’t include others and figuring out how to support and serve other people, then it’s just becomes about me and not about we. Yes, and that’s why I really like the word and the concept around greatness, because greatness includes others. 


Brendon: Yes. 


Lewis: And it includes your dreams and your biggest goals. And also figure out how to impact your friends, your family, your partner, your community in a way of service as well on your on your pursuit of those dreams. So sure. And that’s something I think you do, Master of New to My World, which is you build and launch and exit massive businesses. But every one of them is tied to how do I help others? Yeah. And, and by doing that, it’s fulfilling. It’s renewable energy and there’s clarity. There is like calm within the clarity because it’s not just about, well, I need to be a number one New York Times bestseller for me. I need to do a ten an hour launch for me. And if it doesn’t happen, then I’m a failure. We’re kind of hearing concepts like that. Yesterday I was like, Well, what if it doesn’t work? And we’re the ones that are teaching people how to do this stuff. Sometimes when you’re, let’s say, right? Absolutely. 

And I think that was something that in in my book, The Greatest Mindset, the first concept is getting so clear on a meaningful mission. Not a dream, not a goal, but a meaningful mission is tied to greatness. Goals and dreams are just about success and more “me” focused. Yeah, and a meaningful mission is how do I include others in the dreams and goals? Whether you’re just starting out or you’re trying to figure out what you’re doing, you know, in the creator economy or small business entrepreneur. But I just want to let people know, listening and watching that the biggest entrepreneurs and creators, some of them are in transition and trying to figure out their next meaningful mission as well. 


Brendon: Doubt is there. 


Lewis: And so you’re not alone wherever you are listening right now. But getting clear on that is key because even if you’re creating and making money and launching, you’re something that’s not going to feel enough inside of you. Or you might still be doubting yourself if it’s like clear, meaningful mission. So I just think that’s the foundation for for whatever anyone is trying to do around strategy for launching or creating a book or a podcast or building a business. It’s got to be clear about why not just me? 


Brendon: I love that. I love that. First thing comes my mind when I hear you say that. And I want everyone to appreciate — I mean, this group rates a tremendous number of people. Yes. And what’s beautiful about them is we go around and we share vulnerabilities is yesterday almost everything was built upon and it will always be for all of us this. I want to do these things, but I have doubt. Yes, I’m scared it won’t work. And we also are. I’m scared. I can’t handle it. I’m scared if I fail again. And these are my sound. This is mindset as we go around, no one was like, I can’t figure out WordPress, you know? It was like, No, no, it was. It was me. And it wasn’t like, I need to hire this person per se. It was.. 


Lewis: they weren’t worried about the technical. 


Brendon: Yeah, I’m you know what? I’m having some doubts here. And the difference between I really believe, you know, success and people who were unsuccessful or unsuccessful patterns. What’s happening for them is they have the doubt and then they stop. And what this group will do is they’ll have the doubt, but they’ll explore it. They’ll allow it. They’ll be okay with it. Doubt is okay. Doubt is a signal to learn. And in this group, it’s a signal to say, “Hey, I’m not sure. What do you guys think?” And I think it’s in that social sharing when we have doubt or fear that is incredible. But most people can’t do that in their lives because their mindset is, if I share vulnerability, I’m going to get judgment, they’re going to reject me, I’m going to shut down. I’m going to stop. 


So meaning a mission, I can’t even do that because I can’t even get over myself or share to others with my real thoughts, feelings, dreams are. And one of my favorite things about your book, which I was going to compliment you later, and we haven’t had a chance to talk about this because for those who are looking, I got the galley copy from this dude yesterday and I’m so pumped about it and I love how you broke down the structure. And the first section was on like the barriers to the greatness mindset. And it was like, okay, one barrier, of course, is we have to connect with a meaningful mission. But I also love that you started with fear, judgment — because the reality is most people are holding themselves back from even expressing what they want, let alone finding it. So how do you for for for people hearing like when you guys you guys get together and you all share like what What’s what you’re afraid of what’s not working or you’re insufficient for those who hear that and they like, “I would never share where I feel like I’m not enough.” Because I think even us in our early friendship, right, it was like we were at stages of our career where we were like, we’re just trying to build. 


Lewis: Yeah. 


Brendon: And so there was a guard in this. They’re not in a, in a negative way. It just, I think, over friendships. Imagine what a friendship is that drops down over a period of time, never gets it right? Yeah. And somehow we find that and somehow this group signed that. So for the one person’s listening, we’re like, I’m a competitive person. I can’t tell everybody. They’ll my friends will make fun of me. My parents will reject me. How do you even get into the greatness mindset when you’re terrified to share what your real dream or thought even is? 


Lewis: Two things. Number one, the first 30 years of my life was about competition, and it only got me so far. It was about winning. It was about being right. It was about doing whatever it took to prove people wrong. And it got me external results of success…


Brendon: Yes.


Lewis: In terms of sports, business, etc. Up until 30 I looked successful on the outside, but I felt insignificant and unsuccessful and not enough on the inside. And it’s been a ten year journey now. Literally, it’ll be ten year anniversary of the podcast The School of Greatness in about a week or two. Right at that time is when I started realizing that my ego was driving me like my I wasn’t even aware that he goes driving. I just thought, this is who I am except me, don’t judge me. All that stuff I went through the first phase, let’s say, of a transformational experience of opening up about a lot of things I was ashamed of, afraid of insecure about that I didn’t want anyone to know about me. Because if they knew about me, I thought no one would love me. I thought they wouldn’t to accept me if they knew about what I’d done in my past, what people have done to me, all the shames I’ve talked about publicly. And I said to myself, I’m going to shift from trying to be number one, being the best and winning at all costs to collaboration and lifting others up. And it was –


Brendon: And being happy.


Lewis: And being happy. Serving others.


Brendon: Yes.


Lewis: And that was the journey. It didn’t happen overnight. It took time to unwind, you know, almost 30 years of programing.


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: But it really allowed me to have a lot more peace inside around that. Now, here’s the thing around fear, I believe self-doubt is the killer of all dreams. I think self-doubt is what ruins people’s lives. And my intention and vision is to give people the tools to overcome the doubt within themselves so they can authentically live a life that they desire. And I believe there are three main causes of self-doubt. The first one is the fear of failure, and a lot of people are afraid to fail, period. If you ask a room of 1000 people, how many of you have ever been afraid to fail? Just raise your hand. Almost the entire room will raise their hand at some point in life and typically right now, it’s one of the main drivers of self-doubt that causes them to not launch their thing, whatever it is. As an athlete growing up, I knew that failure was the path to success, and success was what I wanted.


Brendon: Right, failure was testing, iterating, learning, falling …


Lewis: It was practice. 


Brendon: Falling on your face, getting skill, practice.


Lewis: Practice, it was practice. And the coaches that I had really said, you know, this is just feedback. It’s information telling you what’s not working and we’re going to work on how to get there. So, it wasn’t like a bad thing when I would drop a pass. I didn’t like it. I wanted to improve, but it allowed me to focus on how to get better. So, I was never afraid of failure. That wasn’t my, my kryptonite. There was something else for me. The second fear, which I didn’t understand until I started to study it, is the fear of failure. There’s an incredible documentary called The Weight of Gold. It’s about Olympic gold medalists who go extremely depressed, have breakdowns and commit suicide. A lot of gold medalists have committed suicide within a year after winning the gold because of the weight, the pressure, they now – everyone wanting something from you and can you really tell if they care about you for you?


Brendon: Right and the achievement of having done the thing.


Lewis: Can I do it again?


Brendon: Is that it? Is that all there is? The walking on the moon effect. You landed on the moon, you’re back on Earth. Now what? What’s going to feel that amazing and is it possible even again? Oh, my God.


Lewis: My boxing trainer, Tony Jeffries, he was an Olympic bronze medalist for England boxing 15 years ago. And he goes, there’s never been a moment like that again. And I’ll probably never be able to recreate that feeling. Right? So, you have to find it in other ways, which is hard sometimes. And when you chase a dream for 15, 20 years and then it’s over, now what do I do? 


Brendon: Right.


Lewis: It’s like a crisis that we have. So anyways, there’s so many things tied to success for people. If you’re not trained and ready, could be extremely challenging, specifically around money. If you didn’t have money and now you have money, people are reaching out to you asking for it. It makes you feel overwhelmed. All these things where if you’re afraid of something, why would it come to you? If you’re afraid of success, why would success say, I want to be in your life?


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: You’re rejecting it. That’s the second thing. I always wanted success, so I was never afraid of it. My kryptonite was the third thing that causes us to doubt ourselves, which is the fear of judgment, other people’s opinions. and that was the thing that crippled me. It was more about like what people are thinking about me, what they were saying about me, like their opinions, but I was masking it because I was just like, I’m just driven to succeed. But I was so worried about what people were thinking about me. From the wounds that I had for my entire life that that crippled me when I felt triggered in life, when I felt abused or abandoned or whatever it might be, I was like reactive and trying to have a sense of control. And …


Brendon: Did that make yoou defensive in, like, relationships? Right, Right.


Lewis: Really. Everything, everything. Defensive. When I didn’t feel understood, I’m reactive, I’m defensive, I’m, you know, all these different things that I had to learn how to heal. And at the center of all three of these fears, failure, success, judgment is the feeling of I’m not enough. That’s whatever – that’s the center of all three of these. And when we can learn to figure out how to go back and see the scenarios and stories that told us we are not enough and we can actually learn to mend those and heal those memories, and instead, like Viktor Frankl said, create meaning from those memories so that we can use them as a superpower, as a as opposed to being powerless …


Brendon: Right.


Lewis: That’s when we can really be authentic in our movement towards our meaningful mission.


Brendon: Beautiful.


Lewis: And we can understand that, hey, I may not be perfect in all these ways and I may still need to learn skills and I may have a little fears here and there, but I know that I accept and love myself, and it’s a constant practice to stay in that state. It doesn’t just happen overnight. And then your love and accept yourself fully. I’m practicing it continually so I can stay in a peaceful state and I break down how to understand and figure out what what trigger is for you will hold you back in the book. And I think when we can start to break this down and understand it, we can have more peace towards just day to day life.


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: And not be as overwhelmed. And I think that’s the key.


Brendon: I think you did a great job in the book about this idea that we all believe that someone has a perfect mindset. And I think the unfortunate popularity of the term is that mindset. And it’s not. It’s like mind practice


Lewis: Yes, right. It’s application.


Brendon: Yeah and I mean what I really got that vibe, including last night, kind of just drilling through is like, oh, this is an ongoing thing, right? It’s like you might find a meaningful mission, but you better connect with that every day, right? You might be in love, maybe you had the wedding, but you got to connect with that love, generate that love and experience that love in presence each day because your mindset and your thoughts, your feelings, your emotions, these things will crash through like waves. And you’re the only one who’s going to reorient or assign meaning. To your point earlier of like if you look back at the past, putting meaning on it, not just like accepting what meaning was when you were a child. Integrating it.


Lewis: That’s it. It’s a key word.


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: Integration.


Brendon: Integration of that. And then finding that practice each day. Like, okay, integrating what are my real goals, thoughts, feelings, dreams, my meaningful mission. Why is that important to me? How do I move forward? Because, you know, I talk about motivation all the time and a lot of people say, motivation doesn’t matter. I’m like, tell me, what does? Discipline. Well, you’re not disciplined unless you’re motivated. You have to have motivation to do it.


Lewis: You need both.


Brendon: Yeah, they’re not separate. But most people think there’s all these separations and it’s like, well, if you’re disciplined, you have the impulse to do it. Like you’re going to energize yourself to go do the discipline. Even if you don’t – motivation doesn’t mean you want to …


Lewis: Right.


Brendon: It means you can drive yourself too.


Lewis: Yeah.


Brendon: And so I would love to think of, like, as these guys are, listen to her distinctions there. What is for you when you have that meaningful mindset? Because I think a lot of people have that sense of, you know, I have a mission, I have some goals, but I can’t motivate myself, you know, my mindset, maybe I’ve dealt with some fears, maybe rejection, you’re right, is my thing. So how do I do it anyway? Like you know what I mean? How do you get into that mindset of that take the action anyway, even though those things are there.


Lewis: You know, if you don’t feel like you’re being able to take action, then I don’t feel like you’ve truly faced it. If you don’t have the peace of mind to take action and then there’s still something holding you back, there’s still one of these fears somewhere that you haven’t addressed that’s holding you back from actually putting yourself out there.


Brendon: So good.


Lewis: For me, I again, I – when I was afraid to step out into the field – football, basketball game or whatever, because we were playing a big team, you know, a state champion. And I was thinking, I’m not ready. I’m afraid. These guys are much better than us. Can we win? What if I embarrass myself? What if we get humiliated? What if I don’t score a point? All these what ifs. 


Brendon: That’s killing your motivation right there.


Lewis: The motivation. I’d be – it’d be very hard to do it on my own to go out there and perform.


Brendon: Oh, nice.


Lewis: I need great coaches. I need great accountability. I need a great team around me. And that’s the key. I never had it on my own. Jordan, Kobe, all these, you know, LeBron, they don’t do it on their own. On their journey to the top, they have team and coaches and mentors that get them there. When they’re at the top, as you know, that’s when everyone starts calling you. When they’re at the top of their game and music and business and sports, they call you because they say, how do I perform even greater now? How do I sustain this? Because getting here is one thing. Staying there and keeping the elevation when all the pressure is on me is another level. So, we need to call Brendon Burchard, that’s what they do. They call you. That’s always what I’ve done. I’ve known from an early age of just playing sports that I look up to people I respect, I look up to you, I look up to guys like Ed Mylet, Dean Graziosi, you know, Randy and Ethan and all these guys in here who have had seasons beyond me, who have been there and done that. And I reach out when I need advice, when I need support, when I need accountability, when I’m like, I’m doubting this because I’ve never done it.


Brendon: Yes.


Lewis: Never done sellable


Brendon: That’s normal to doubt something you’ve never done before. People can’t sit with that. 


Lewis: And I just think you don’t have to pay for coaching or pay for mentorship, but I think finding people in your life that can support you when you’re doubting yourself, that you respect, that you trust, that always gave me the courage in sports. It gives me the courage in relationship. I have a therapy coach that I work with every two weeks and things are great. It’s not like something is bad. I just want to keep getting better.


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: So, I keep leaning and investing in these different areas of my life, so …


Brendon: I love where you went with that. I love where you went with that, you know, because for those who are listening, that question of, you know, how do you motivate yourself when you don’t want to do it you know? Or, I’ve got these fears or these doubts, that’s entirely normal. Lewis Howes feels that. The difference is Lewis Howes goes, okay, I’m feeling that, let me get a coach, let me reach out to people, you know, let me find a team, let me ask questions. You’re really good at that.


Lewis: You know, here’s the thing, here’s the funny thing, we’re in a text thread this morning, I’m not going to say what happened, but there was a text thread this morning where one of our friends went through something last night that was scary and uncomfortable for them. Everything was fine this morning. They were saying everything was fine and someone replied in the text, I’m not sure if you saw it. It’s like 20 minutes ago, someone replying to text saying because our friend was like, you know, I feel a little embarrassed about what happened. Guys, you know, I’m sorry to, like, break up the party a little bit with what this situation was. And someone replied and said this morning, never feel embarrassed. It’s actually more courageous to reach out for help.


Brendon: Yes.


Lewis: So many people try to do it on their own to not feel embarrassed. And I think it’s more courageous to say, hey, I’m not feeling good or I’m thinking I’m a little off right now, or I’m just not sure about myself. It’s more courageous to reach out for help and get that support than it is to try to do it on your own.


Brendon: I love it. I tell people all the time, most people, especially like in our art world or our industry, they’re actually not fearful to start the business or start the website or start the podcast or start the thing. It’s not fear, it’s not real fear. It’s not that fear that’s like, you know, you’re going to be attacked, we’re going to fall or you can be physically harmed. It’s not even that big of a psychological fear. The reality is they would just be embarrassed to be seen starting small, right?


Lewis: So there’s a scenario, there’s a process in the book to help you overcome this that I tell about. Again, when I was done with one identity of playing sports and trying out a new identity of business and making money, which I had no business getting into because I didn’t know what I was doing. I had all these insecurities and fears, and a mentor of mine said, You haven’t done a fear list yet. And I go, what’s a fear list? He goes, you need to write down your biggest fears. Ranked them from the scariest to the least scariest, and just keep writing down any insecurity and fear and create a fear list. As long as you have a list of fears, you will be powerless in your dreams or something will hold you back. And so in order to be fearless, you need to create a fear list and start knocking them off.


Brendon: Like that.


Lewis: I couldn’t speak in public 15 years ago because I was terrified of what people would think about me. I was embarrassed about how I communicate. 


Brendon: Yes. 


Lewis: And so that was the number one fear, and I found a coach who was a speaker coach, and he said, you need to go to Toastmasters and you need to put yourself in an embarrassing situation every week. Be uncomfortable. I did not want to do this, but I had a dream of impacting people and I didn’t know if it was going to be in a boardroom or in front of 50,000 people on a stage. I didn’t know, but I knew I wanted to make an impact and I knew public speaking or the ability to communicate effectively and enroll people in a vision. 


Brendon: Yeah


Lewis: Was a skill that I needed to learn in order to do that. And so I didn’t want to do this. I did not want to show up and stand in front of a room of professionals and get judged every week. It was the most uncomfortable thing, but I also knew this was the thing that was holding me back from my dreams. So every week I did this 


Brendon: Practice, feedback practice, feedback, practice.


Lewis: For a year… embarrassment, humiliation, all these things. I mean, it was a safe environment, But you feel embarrassed, 


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: because you’re not as good as everyone else


Brendon: but showing up next week, You work through it again.


Lewis: You get better.

Brendon: You work through it again. You work through it. That’s the thing that most people talk of fear or embarrassment. You just got to work through that a bunch.


Lewis: Constantly, constantly.


Brendon: You know, the more you work through it, the more it doesn’t have its hooks in you anymore. 


Lewis:It doesn’t, it doesn’t. 


Brendon: You’re aware of it. You’re aware because you still have that.


Lewis: Hundred percent. 


Brendon: Right? If last night happened to us, we’d also feel a little tinge of that. 


Lewis: Hundred percent.


Brendon: But if we worked through it a lot, you’re like, Oh, that’s not going to get me today. It’s not going to hook me.


Lewis: And you have more practice on just accepting it goes back to do I accept and love myself even if I embarrass myself. 


Brendon: Oh, that’s great. 


Lewis: And that’s the key. Because when you do, then you have the ability to be more vulnerable or, or no matter what happens, you still accept and love yourself. And a lot of us put this pressure that unless I do this, unless I achieve this, people are not going to love and accept me. And the thing is, we are not loving and accepting of ourselves. And that’s the key. It’s interesting. I would not, you know, you weren’t there, but it was two years ago there was a mastermind thing with Tony Robbins. And at one point everyone’s kind of going around and everyone’s getting coached by Tony, right? 20 of us in the room. And I’m the last person to go for whatever reason. It just came to me last. And I remember, you know, we were supposed to ask Tony a couple of questions about business, and for whatever reason, he just saw it in me. He just saw something was off. And he goes, “How’s your relationship, brother?” You know, I was like, I just lost it in front of all of our peers, you know, individuals who are successful. I am bawling in front of everyone. And I remember thinking to myself, like, should I feel embarrassed or is this exactly what I need? I need practice actually allowing myself to be vulnerable in front of other high achievers and other peers in this and someone I respect and 

Brendon: Yeah, with a coach, absolutely. 


Lewis: and with Tony and not masking it. And it was interesting because, you know, it wasn’t an enjoyable moment necessarily to be vulnerable and crying and be like a mess in front of people. But I know it’s exactly what I needed. 


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: It was uncomfortable, but it was needed. You know, here’s a how 


Brendon: I love that uncomfortable but needed. Wooo.


Lewis: And here’s the powerful thing. Later that night, you know, we’re going to dinner and stuff and one by one, the people in the room that I didn’t really know that well, there were some people that I didn’t know. They were coming up to me and they were like, “Thank you so much. Like for how you were opening up. I kind of thought one thing about you and I had no clue that you were this, like, vulnerable in this open and this… You didn’t have the I would never have the courage to do that in front of Tony and just kind of like allowing yourself to be seen for who you are as opposed to masking who you’re not.” 


Brendon: Yeah


Lewis: Is a powerful thing too, 


Brendon: Right. I think that’s really hard. You wrote another great book, The Mask of Masculinity, and how often we’ve been taught to hold back the feeling or put the mask up or create that barrier there. And then that big breakthrough when, hey, here’s what happened to me. Hey, here’s how I’m feeling. Hey, here’s where I need help. It’s just like it’s such a level of personal freedom. 


Lewis: Freedom. 


Brendon: When that happens, it’s like the Great Unlock. Cause I wrote about that in the Motivation manifesto, too. It’s like, that’s what we all want: a sense of personal freedom to be who we really are, to pursue things we really care about without the constrictions of our own fears and other people’s judgments.


Lewis: Exactly. 


Brendon: And that’s what you’re getting at, like that moment of freedom when you can express feeling or I mean, I’m sure people, a listener watching, can remember that moment when they finally expressed love. I can remember when I told Denise that I loved her. I remember exactly. I remember the dinner table. I remember where we’re at, Remember the setting. I remember the music, everything. When I finally we’d been together for some time and I finally said, you know, I told her I love her. And, you know, she burst into tears. I burst into tears. This beautiful moment. Because for me, that was a I hadn’t said that to women in a very long time. And so it was a very big deal for me. And later that night, I felt so fulfilled in bed. I’m like, you know, I said this. Yeah, okay, it’s here. It’s beautiful. You know what it means? Like, cry. Let it go. Tell them you love him. Don’t hold it back, kind of thing. Because I think that the grand barrier of greatness is overcoming all those things that you hold back and you know, you hold back. And actually the funny thing is people think they hold back for self-protection, and yet when they hold back, they actually know it makes them miserable too. So you know, when you hold back, it makes you suffer more and yet you keep doing it. And so it’s a really compelling thing if you don’t break that barrier, which is why I love how you structured the book, because if you don’t break that barrier, that idea that you will selflessly serve others. You can’t because you’re in your head and you’re actually making yourself suffer more. And it’s almost like when you achieve a little bit more personal freedom, you can see other people again, as you can reveal yourself again, you can have this sense of beauty and meaning and joy in life, you know, not just successes like we were talking about, you know, which I love how you said there’s a difference here. 


Lewis: You know, a lot of successful people that are still unfulfilled and unhappy and feel lost, you know, that make a lot of money or have the accolades. But they come to you because they’re like, what’s wrong with me? You know, And it’s because really they don’t have peace about who they are. 


Brendon: Yep.


Lewis: Something is not enough. 

Brendon: Yep. 


Lewis: And they don’t accept who they are, whatever that is, inside of them. And so that’s why for me, it’s been an ongoing journey of healing and finding meaning from all the things that I was ashamed of, afraid of insecure about, and bringing it to the now and being at peace with all those parts of me that are ugly and you know, that you don’t enjoy about yourself, that you feel shame and insecurity around and just saying, You know what? It’s okay. I love all those parts. I find meaning in them. And here’s the vision I have moving forward of who I want to be now and in the future and let me work towards it. 


Brendon: And I love it. And I love it because when you can do that for yourself, you actually start seeing others, which I think is what gives you the connection, the desire to want to serve others you recognize empathetically, like, Oh, these people are like me, these people I should help, I should serve. Like when you recognize your own wounds or feel your own wounds or your own pains, and that pain turns into a purpose or a mission or cause. I think that’s so important. And for those who are listening and like are well, read up on this, you know, like all spiritual texts, you know, the Bhagavad Gita, all contemporary leadership. Greenleaf Servant leadership. Yeah. You know, most of every spiritual text, whether it’s the Bible or Koran or whatever, it is about a sense of reaching out to that selfless service of other people, and that is itself a demonstration of love. And that is something that gives us happiness. I think a lot of people relate with that and they get that. And then, okay. Brennan feeling good about myself today? I have my coffee, I’m actually I’m not even my self-worth concerns and everything I want to be great today Lewis, so okay they feel good and they actually they’re in a good place today. Yeah. And they want to be great today. How do you be great daily because I love how you talk about this, especially on the School of Greatness podcast, which I recommend it for everybody all the time. So please make sure you listen to this. This is one of the best interviews and personal development of all time. 


Lewis: Thank you. 


Brendon: Like, unbelievable. But you talk about that a lot when you’re trying to tease out what people think about greatness. And it often comes back to, you know, it’s not just legacy 50 years from now, right. Is how you’re living your life. So that person goes, All right, I hear what you guys are saying. I actually feel good today. I’m ready to get at it. Like, how do you get things done or how do you live a great day on that achievement side, right? So we’re happy we have a little personal freedom. We’re ready to go because a lot people listen. So like Brian, I got it. I’m having a good day. Yeah, How do I be great today? What would you say?


Lewis: I think it starts with gratitude and appreciation when you wake up. 


Brendon: Yes. 


Lewis: And being thankful that you have another shot at life today because nothing is guaranteed. I think it’s 180,000 people in the world die every day. I think that’s kind of the average. 180,000 die every day you wake up. You’re not one of them. Be thankful. Be thankful. You had a traumatic, traumatic accident in your life where you had an extra golden ticket. 


Brendon: Yeah.


Lewis: Right, and you think about that every day and right the second chance and you think about that every day. And I think a lot of people take it for granted, you know, and when you see something like COVID happened, you realize, oh, okay, maybe, maybe it’s not, it’s not guaranteed. So I wake up with gratitude. I’ve got a great partner, and she’s smiling next to me when I wake up. And it’s a beautiful feeling. So I wake up with joy and gratitude and appreciation. I think that starts the day I’m very clear on the night before of what I’m doing that day, the next day. So I have a clear game plan and I talk about the Greatness Gameplan. Yes. You know, and for me, Lisa, yesterday, Lisa Bilyeu was talking about like if it’s not scheduled, it’s not going to get done. And so I’m just so clear on my meaningful mission, which is to serve 1 million lives every single week to help them improve the quality of their life. Done, I’m clear. So I fill my schedule up for my health in the morning because if I have my health, then I have more energy to take on the mission. So I, I love myself first. I appreciate myself first. What we appreciate, appreciates in value. What we depreciate or discount or criticize goes down in value.


Brendon: I love that. 


Lewis: So speak kindly to myself, I act in a healthy way, in accordance to my vision, to myself, with my workouts, with my nutrition. I take care of me first, then I have my schedule and I just do the things that are in full alignment with reaching that vision. 


Brendon: Yes.


Lewis: And I say no to a lot of other stuff. I wasn’t always this way. I used to say yes to everything. You try all this stuff. And I want to do this and that and that. 


Brendon: Especially if you’re a giver, 


Lewis: 100%, 


Brendon: You know, that’s the problem when you’re a giver yes!

Lewis: I’ll talk to anyone. I’ll do whatever you want, and then you’re like, I’m drained and exhausted and I’m actually not accomplishing anything. 


Brendon: And I have no boundaries. 


Lewis: Exactly


And all their boundaries became my boundaries and my agenda is and all of a sudden 


Lewis: And I’m a people pleaser because I still doubt myself and all these things. Right? And so I just, you know, I think with wisdom and experience and making tons of mistakes in my life, I started to learn the hard way over and over that, I’ve just got to focus on my mission and have really quality relationships and make sure I get good sleep. And so it’s kind of just rinse and repeat, you know, and that and that phase. Now I also have creativity and adventure and travel and things like that in my life. I’m not just like a robot. Yeah, yeah. So it’s creating a rich, abundant life of what I want. But I schedule a lot of it, almost all of it. 


Brendon: So good. 


Lewis: I schedule my workouts, I schedule my meetings. I said, well, everything. And I allow myself to feel at peace with it all. And I think that’s been the process.


Brendon: That’s so huge.


Lewis: I also go to sleep with gratitude. Me and Martha every night. What are three things you’re grateful for? And I say those things and allow me to just reflect on the day. So it’s trying to have a whole complete solid day and just repeating that over and over. 


Brendon: You know what I’ve loved in being friends and watching your evolution, which you talk about so publicly and you know, on everything that I’ve sensed was at this event, you know, I said, “How’s it going?” And you said, “You know, I’m just I’m full in my heart and in peace”, and that’s because of your relationship. 


Lewis: Yea, it’s amazing. 


Brendon: …there’s greatness in your relationship. And I think that that has been a secret of a lot of people in that room. You know, we heard the other day of someone saying, hey, if your home front is secure, you’re way more likely to make bold bets and take risks. You know, and I think it also makes so much joy, but greatness in a relationship… you know people think, oh, greatness, mindset. Again, they go back to achievement, but notice we talked about healing. Now we’re talking about relationships, right? You heal, you get your relationships right, the greatness journey is so much easier. And I think about greatness and the calendaring thing you’re talking about.


Like, I want to have a great relationship with my wife. So at the beginning of the year, we try to sit down and schedule what are our four big trips we’re going to make this year. What are the little trips, side trips? You know, we’re going to go to this city or that city. What time are we going to take away from each other? So I’ll go take a boys trip or she’ll go out with the ladies right.  When we can go see our families, but when might we go see our family separately. Right. So we’re building in like the rhythm of the year, a little bit to be with each other deeply and also be separate, and create that tension, and that, you know, that  longing and beauty. You’ve talked to so many people about relationships, and I think you’ve had such a great breakthrough with Martha. I love how you guys are together. What are some, like, tips for greatness in a relationship? Not necessarily in the book. Not technical for you two, like what has made this so amazing because watching you two together fills my heart. Like what? What was that you think? 


Lewis: Well, I believe the greatest relationship we have with someone is with ourselves. And it doesn’t matter who you attract in your life if you don’t have a great relationship with you internally. And for many years in my life, I was unconsciously abandoning myself. I was beating up myself internally, I was abandoning myself, I was doing harm to me. And it didn’t matter who I had in my life, I wasn’t able to love me. So how could they love me and me receive it? And so first I had to mend the relationship with myself in order to have a great relationship with someone else. And again, that goes back to healing, that goes back to having a coach to support me and tools and techniques that I wasn’t integrated into yet, into my life. Maybe I knew conceptually or understood analytically, but I hadn’t physically embodied the integration of practicing healing. And there was a shift inside my heart one day, after about five months of ongoing emotional therapy coaching, where I had this pain consistently, kind of off and on for years in my life, and it literally unlocked and disintegrated through my body. It was one of the weirdest things I’ve ever experienced, and I haven’t felt this pain in my chest since.


Brendon: Wow. 


Lewis: And that was about two years ago. And I remember being like, “What is this?” And she goes, You’re finally lifting the veil. There’s been something that’s been a film, a program, a guard that’s been holding you back, and you’re finally integrating your learning. You’re awakening, and it’s allowing you to release the pain, the tension, the tightness, whatever it is that you are holding on to for so long. And I was kind of like, “Is this going to come back?” I was like it feels, I felt so much peace,  like a sense of love,  light just entered my heart where there was pain and just just disintegrated through my body was such a weird feeling. And I just said, I want to keep feeling this peace. So I said, I’m going to keep showing up. I’m going to keep practicing, keep integrating.  And if I feel a little off; I’m just going to go back and keep practicing and integrating. And it’s not comfortable to sit in front of someone and be vulnerable for 2 hours. I spent 8 hours one Saturday with a coach just going through and practicing and integrating and I was like, This is not enjoyable to be on a Saturday doing this when I can go to the beach, I can hang out with friends, I can watch TV, whatever it is. 


Brendon: Got to work on yourself. 


Lewis: But doing that consistently every week for the last two years has been one of the most powerful experiences I’ve had with my own relationship to myself, which has allowed me to have a better and great relationship with others. Yes. And so I think that’s the key. A lot of us, and I’m to blame for this, for most of my life where I wasn’t willing to face myself. Maybe analytically I could, but I wasn’t willing to face it emotionally, fully. And that has been a game changer. And I’m not saying everyone needs therapy every two weeks or something like that, but I feel like whatever is holding you back, that’s what you get to lean into, whatever that might be. 


Brendon: …Consistently leaning into. I mean,if I think of Lewis Howes and people ask me “What’s Lewis like?” I’m like, Listen, one thing you need to know about this guy, his heart is as big as he is. He’s a big dude. He has a huge heart. Second, he’s in this for the right reasons, because in this industry, no one endures ten years if they’re not in it for the right reasons. They love it, right? They get rich quick or they do something. But even if they make it or they don’t, they are burned out.  In five or six years they’re gone because their heart wasn’t in it. I’m like his heart is huge. He’s in it for the right reasons. And his consistency in everything he does is the most admired thing, because it’s so hard to be that consistent. And I think that’s one of the things that really leads to greatness. I’m going to consistently explore where I need to heal. I’m going to consistently have tough conversations. I’m going to consistently drive even when I have self-doubt. I’m going to consistently show up and do my craft. And I think that is such a huge element of your success. I know it’s in the book. I think of the book and why people need to read it. Where do you think in their journey of being consistent and being greater, what’s some non-conventional advice in the book where you feel most people don’t think about mindset this way? Because I think  that’s what this whole conversation was.


Lewis: Yeah. Which I love. 


Brendon: Is there anything else in the book that you feel like, you know, you took a topic and flipped it on the side or people wouldn’t think of that? Counterintuitive.


Lewis:  I think a lot of people, when they look at business and life, success and goals;  I think a lot of people focus on how they can make the most money? In a lot of ways, like what’s the thing that’s going to make me money? What’s the opportunity to make money? And “ooh, there’s an opportunity!  Let me go do that thing.”  Like you said, people kind of fizzle out after 3 to 5 years because they chase that opportunity as opposed to doing a more heart centered, meaningful mission. Some people don’t know what to get into. They’re just like, I’m not even sure what to get into. There’s so many options. And I always talked about getting clear on your passions and your powers. So the things that excite you, the things you’re interested in, think about those things and then think about the superpowers you have. Create a fear list and turn the things that make you feel powerless into superpowers by going all in on them. And then the third piece is figuring out what’s the problem that you want to solve. And a lot of people go after an opportunity to make money as opposed to solving the problem that is fulfilling and meaningful to them. I help a lot of people in different charities. If they reach out to me, I’ll donate to pretty much any cause, you know, $50-$100 or something for people’s causes, but I invest more in the problem that is fulfilling to me that I want to solve, which is childhood education and ending sex slavery for kids, because those are meaningful to me. So I go all in on solving those problems. I help boost causes in a more meaningful, bigger way because that is closer to my life and that’s the problem I want to solve. So I use my talents, I use my passion and my power,  talents, my interests, and I figure out a problem. People in the Creator Economy or the Coaching Consulting Economy. My friend Roy Baden said this to me one time. He said, “You know, you are perfectly positioned to help the person you once were.”  And I think figuring out how I do not go after the money-making opportunity, but go after a problem that is meaningful for me, it’ll be more long lasting. I can be more consistent on that problem because it’s closer to me. You can make  money doing a lot of things right now. You can sell toothbrushes. You can sell nail polish and people would buy it, but is it solving a problem that is meaningful for you ? Just because you can do it doesn’t mean you should. 


Brendon: That’s right. 


Lewis: And I think a lot of people do stuff because they can, not because they should. 


Brendon: Absolutely true. Absolutely true. I just want to honor you and acknowledge you because I’ve had the blessing of being on your show where you said so many kind things to me. I think about your consistency. I recommend “The Greatness Mindset” to everybody if you’re listening, get this. I also want to say you’re a great man. And when I think of greatness, I know people hear that and I give you that compliment. Oh, he’s a great man. And it’s not because of all of his achievements. It’s because he’s in motion today trying to be his best self and serve other people. And to me, that’s a form of greatness. Working each day, practicing each day to try to be the best of who you are and to serve other people. And I see you do that every dang day for so many years, that’s why I think you’re a great man. I appreciate you. I love you.


Lewis: I love you too, brother. Appreciate you, man.


Brendon:  All right, my friends, I hope you enjoyed that interview with Lewis Howes. Make sure you pick up “ The Greatness Mindset”,an unbelievable book. You’re going to really enjoy it. And listen while you’re here, make sure you go and join us in GrowthDay as well if you’re not a GrowthDay member. It’s so powerful that every single week you can have live coaching and training from the world’s best motivational teachers, in GrowthDay. So make sure you check it out. Don’t let this be the end of this conversation for you today. Every single week, I bring the biggest keynote hours in the world together, the greatest wellness experts in the world together. And it’s not ordinary. It’s them teaching full frameworks on how to get the transformation. Go to and join us there. I appreciate you being part of this journey of personal development today. You made self-improvement a way of life, and I always love to say every day is a great day to grow, and I love that we did it together.