Brian Fleming is an author, speaker, and Combat Wounded Veteran. He's the resilience trainer for the U.S. military and teaches people how to come back from setbacks as stronger, better people. He's a walking poster child for that for sure. He speaks for Fortune 500 companies and other organizations about how to stand firm when everything around you is blowing up.
NOTE: Complete transcript available at the bottom of the page.
Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 059
Amazing Public Speaking – https://www.amazingpublicspeaking.com/
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
Higher Education Webinar – https://screwthecommute.com/webinars[02:22] Tom's introduction to Brian Fleming [03:17] Brian's war stories [05:17] Jobs before deployment [08:12] Sort of fell into this screw the commute thing [11:06] How he operates his business [15:21] Getting screwed over in business in a BIG way [23:19] The best and worst part of working for yourself [26:17] Other things that Brian offers [31:26] Shoutouts [33:14] Sponsor message [34:10] A typical day for Brian [40:41] Staying motivated and having a beef with it
Higher Education Webinar – It's the second webinar on the page: https://screwthecommute.com/webinars
Screw The Commute – https://screwthecommute.com/
Brian's website – http://blownupguy.com
Resilience Booklet – https://www.resiliencebooklet.com/
Dave Roever – https://roeverfoundation.org/
30 Speaking Tips in 37.625 Minutes – http://www.onlinemeetingnow.com/register/?id=l8i4jyv23a&
Internet Marketing Training Center – https://imtcva.org/
List Building – https://screwthecommute.com/episodes/58-the-gold-is-in-the-list-tom-talks-list-building/
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She is a wonderful wonderful lady and a Hollywood producer director, and she did the movie “Viktor & I”. A great documentary.
She has a phrase that she teaches you how to do “dispersed camping trips”. That's where people go on solitude and adventure camping away from developed campgrounds.
I discovered a great new headline / subject line / subheading generator that will actually analyze which headlines and subject lines are best for your market. I negotiated a deal with the developer of this revolutionary and inexpensive software. Oh, and it's good on Mac and PC. Go here: http://jvz1.com/c/41743/183906
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Episode 059 – Brian Fleming
[00:00:09] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.
[00:00:24] Hey hey hey everybody it's Tom here with episode 59 of screw the commute podcast. Wow. This show will quote blow you away today we got the blown up guy here Brian Fleming. And let me tell you the blown up guy is not just some cute moniker he made up like the telephone doctor or something like that. No when I talk about Brian Fleming I'm talking about a guy who was actually blown up. So wait until you hear his story and comeback. Now episode 58 list building. If you missed that what's up. How could you miss that one. The money is in your list folks the gold is in your list so go back and make sure you listen to that if you've missed it. That's Episode 58. That's one of my Monday training sessions on list building. I do training sessions every Monday on something that's either made me a lot of money or saved me a lot of money. So don't forget those Monday sessions. Now today's sponsor is amazingpublicspeaking.com. This is a membership site with over 475 professional and public speaking training videos plus audios and articles. And the guy on today is a prolific speaker if you want to do the kind of stuff he does without getting blown up there's other ways to do it. Wouldn't take that route if I had to choose. But we also have a corresponding complimentary webinar with 30 speaking tips in thirty seven point six two 5 4 3 2 minutes. I think. We'll have a link to that in the show notes this is episode 59. So the show notes would be at screwthecommute.com/59.
[00:02:22] All right let's get to the main event Brian Fleming is an author speaker and Combat Wounded Veteran. That's an understatement right there. He's the resilience trainer for the U.S. military and teaches people how to come back from setbacks and stronger better people. He's a walking poster child for that for sure. He speaks for Fortune 500 companies and other organizations about how to stand firm when everything around you is blowing up. Brian, are you ready to screw. The commute.
[00:03:01] Is that question ever answered in the negative.
[00:03:05] One guy said oh Tom you know my wife's name isn't commute. So man it's been a long time. I'm so glad we reconnected. What are you been up to lately.
[00:03:18] Just traveling. Speaking got another book coming out which we'll talk about here in a bit. And I'm lucky to be alive and I'm happy to be above ground.
[00:03:29] Well tell everybody your story.
[00:03:32] Oh I mean in the short version I was a team leader in a infantry platoon with the U.S. Army's 10th Mountain Division while fighting the war in Afghanistan. I think I was 20 21. And while there two of my vehicles that I was inside of were blown up the first one was by a roadside bomb that we ran over. I actually walked away from that without a scratch on me. Miraculously. And then a few months later a suicide bomber in a minivan decided to pull up his minivan right up next to the door of my vehicle while driving down Highway 1 through Kandahar and he blew himself in his minivan into about 10,000 pieces. And I woke up in a ditch on the side of the road burned and bloody. He was the only one who died. So you know you get a Purple Heart if you get blown up or shot in combat. And so they give you this license plate right. You get a Purple Heart license plate you get a Purple Heart. And so my Purple Heart license plate actually says NICTRY on it because he was the only guy who died. So that's my point sticking it back to him.
[00:04:39] Love that love. Those pictures there in your first book. The one that has the pictures.
[00:04:51] Oh yeah the first couple did one was Never The Same. The more recent one was Redeployed. And yeah you just go to a blownupguy.com there's pictures on there. That's the easy way.
[00:05:01] I remember seeing those things and then looking at you and looking at those.
[00:05:08] Yeah I woke up that day and had a bad year.
[00:05:11] How long had you been in the service when that happened.
[00:05:16] About two years.
[00:05:17] Two years now had you had a job before that because you only been 18 when you went into service or so.
[00:05:23] Oh right yeah yeah I went in straight out of high school as a teenager. I worked at a grocery store bagging groceries I worked at a shoe store worked at an Ice cream shop on the beach. Did manual labor on a ranch out in Colorado for a little bit of a time and then went in the military.
[00:05:39] After this occurred how long did it take to recover.
[00:05:45] I spent 14 months at Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio Texas.
[00:05:49] In the in the medical center.
[00:05:52] Yeah yeah. At the medical center.
[00:05:57] You were able to go home.
[00:05:59] Yeah it was inpatient outpatient between the reconstructive surgery and the occupational physical therapy. All the other blast injuries and the head trauma I sustained everything cumulatively I spent the following 14 months there before I was medically put out.
[00:06:16] So then what happened. I never got to figure out that you go directly into speaking or what happened right after you were able to get around that you're done with therapy.
[00:06:27] I actually I did kind of go directly into speaking and that's not really a normal thing. Nor did I really plan it. But the short version is a Vietnam veteran who had been speaking for about 30 or 35 years came to the medical center while I was still a patient there and he spoke to me about 20 other guys who had been blown up and shot and everything in Iraq and Afghanistan. And he had been injured in Vietnam. He had a phosphorous grenade blew up next to his head and burned half his body off but he survived and so he'd been speaking for decades. And he basically said hey Brian I'll I'll show you how to do something with this if you're willing. And I thought to myself well I'm done deal with the scum of the earth I don't want to be a cop when I get out of here. So I thought let's try the speaking thing maybe less people would try and shoot me. So I had a mentor who really I don't know if I could even pay somebody enough money to do what this guy did for me.
[00:07:29] He would put me up on a stage almost every weekend for like a year straight and just two or three minutes at a time then five or seven minutes at a time. He got me exposure it got me experience it got me to tell my story and see that there's real value in this and that that's how I rolled into this thing.
[00:07:47] What's his name.
[00:07:49] His name is Dave Roever.
[00:07:50] Is he still around.
[00:07:52] Oh yeah yeah. He does a lot with the military now.
[00:07:59] Well good for him. What a guy.
[00:08:02] He never charged me a nickel either. It was all heart and my family tree has changed and transformed because of him.
[00:08:09] Amazing amazing thing. So you kind of just got shoveled into this screw the commute thing. What's your speech about. Basically when you talk to people is it only speaking or consulting what all do you provide to the companies and organizations.
[00:08:28] Yeah I do speeches I do consulting. The main thing the easiest way to describe it really is I mean you know how most people struggle to move beyond trauma or major life setbacks. So basically just write books and speeches about human resilience and help people take the next step forward so they can regain control of their life and sanity whether it's personally or whether it's how these resilience principles apply to business. I spoke for a major bank just a few months ago out there in Charlotte North Carolina. And they wanted to talk about resilience as it pertains to leadership and so I do a lot of leadership talks and you know things like that. So resilience is something that applies to a lot of different areas of life whether it's personal or business. And so that's that's what I talk about.
[00:09:19] You still do work with the military also right.
[00:09:22] Yes I do resilience training for the military. Yeah.
[00:09:25] Now I imagine you know I was never in the military I was in ROTC For a while. But but I imagine some of these you know you are an obvious you got blown to hell. And sometimes I'm really imagining people come home from the service and they are blown up as bad as you but there's nothing showing in other words it's internal.
[00:09:53] Absolutely absolutely.
[00:09:55] And I'm sure you're an inspiration to those people too because it's harder for us civilians to relate. If a guy looks like he's you know perfectly healthy and all fine but inside it could be a mess right.
[00:10:11] Absolutely. I mean when I first got injured you've seen the pictures I was really messed up. Well it's been a number of years now. I look I look perfectly normal. I mean I'm not that good looking but I don't look like I got blown up. You would never know by looking at me if you didn't know the story. And you know Tom that's the way it is for all of us though we all have things that people just they can't see right. What we've been through and it's it's the things that we we do things and act certain ways based on how we feel inside. And we don't know how to handle issues and so you might get somebody who just in a crowd of people just blows up and goes off the deep end yelling and everyone's looking at that guy going What the heck is wrong with him. But it's like well hey he's had about 10 years of stuff building up and now just all came out. You know that's why resilience is so important because you can get things in order you can have tactics that you can integrate into your life for your business to help keep it on track. So it doesn't blow up all around you some day.
[00:11:05] Yes for sure. So tell us you know this is screw the commute. So tell us more about your business. How does it operate. I mean is your family involved. Your wife involved in it or is it all you. How's your business run.
[00:11:20] Well initially my wife was helping me a lot. I found out we made better lovers than business partners. She knows where I sleep so she really is hands off. Now she'll help every now and then with like putting something on the calendar. But at this point I have been picked up by a few speakers bureaus. Over the last number of years and so that really helps take the load off for all the logistics and stuff but still we still get stuff in that that isn't from the bureaus and my wife. We usually just help me out with that and she'll make the call and kind of see what they're trying to do and if I'm available and cover the details. Stuff like that.
[00:12:03] So are you on the road a lot or is this more bigger events. Once in a while you're in.
[00:12:10] Probably I mean depending on the month probably three or five times a month I really don't like being gone more than that. You know last last September through December I was home about three weeks and it was spaced out every few days I was home. But I came home and my kids. I have two little kids 9 7. They looked a little bit taller and their voices were different. Yeah that kind of got me I'm like Man the business. Yeah this is going pretty well. But there's there's a cost.
[00:12:41] Oh I thought they were old enough. You're going to send them on the road.
[00:12:46] They will be working my book table though.
[00:12:50] People can't resist buying a book off a kid.
[00:12:53] You get a perky lady or a kid or a dog back there or something.
[00:13:01] So did this mentor teach you that the business of speaking to or just be great on stage or what.
[00:13:08] The biggest thing I picked up from was being onstage really relating to people on a deeply personal level. He has written numerous books of his own over the years. He has all other programs he has several nonprofits he's launched. And so I did I wouldn't say I got business training per se but I got to see a lot of what was going on and he would guide me whenever I'd ask questions or hey I'm trying to do this. He said well here's how I've done it. And here's how I know what some other people have done it and things like that. But I would say the biggest thing I took away from him was was really the personal the ability to relate personally to people from stage on a heart level so that they can actually get something that really helps them but know that like what Brian's not just out here hawking a product like this guy actually believes what he's saying because it's so much a part of his life and sincerity is a big deal to me.
[00:14:01] Do you use a lot of visuals to show what happened to you.
[00:14:05] I'll use a powerpoint for just a handful of pictures during a typical keynote. That's probably about 10 percent of the keynote. I don't like using PowerPoint for my key notes except for just that part with seven or eight pictures kind of tells a story of the picture of me with my license plate that says NICTRY and I'll give him the big thumbs up and it's funny everybody laughs at it. But if I was giving like a sales presentation or something that would be different but my typical keynote speech is really conversational from me to the to the audience.
[00:14:41] But you said you do consultation also with what type of thing would you be a consultant for.
[00:14:48] I've mentored a number of people and speaking I've had so many people come up to me because they've seen me talk or they've heard of me and basically say you know hey I want to use my story too but I have no idea how to get into speaking how do I write a speech how do I sell it. What do I charge all those all those questions that everybody asks them when they first get in. I did actually. You know I've I've I'm right now with the launch my next book I have some programs coming out too that is actually going to be helpful for people who want to actually get into doing that.
[00:15:22] Have you ever gotten screwed over in business.
[00:15:24] Oh my gosh. Not a lot but a couple of times I have. It was big.
[00:15:31] I mean you're a guy that doesn't do things small.
[00:15:35] Yeah I mean if it's going down like they're all coming with me actually here is this is probably the biggest one that was most disappointing. So I live in Dallas Texas. I got book to speak in El Paso Texas. And if you're not from Texas you might be saying Oh that's probably like you know from Miami to Fort Lauderdale right. No that's the same state. No it's 11 and a half hours if you drive if you drive like I do just one way. So you basically cross three or four states worth of distance. If you're in another state. Well I guess I get booked to speak there a lot of churches bring me in to talk for patriotic events things like that. So that was the case here. So there wasn't really a contract a lot of times they'll say oh we'll pay this much or we'll pass the plate. And one of those things. And it's like all right whatever just cover my expenses and do your pass the plate thing and you know. So anyway I went and I talked and the guy didn't pass the plate. And so I looked at my wife after the service was ending. Kind of weird like you didn't do that. I wonder what their plan is. So afterwards. Oh by the way. I thought well let me back up. So I asked them about it. Basically He played stupid the whole time oh no this was our agreement or no we just we were going to cover expenses and have you come in like no you said you anyways. He literally played stupid. Yeah this is a senior pastor of a church who is a retired Army colonel. So this isn't normal by the way most of my experiences have been great. Get this and you'll probably relate to this. They were serving barbecue brisket and dessert at the other end in the church. After my talk immediately following my talk. So guess how my book sales did. They tanked because when you put books on a table to buy or barbecue brisket people go for the food. All right there are some places you can sell if it's an outdoor event it's going to be hard. If it's if it's an event where they have food afterwards you might as well not even bring your books. And so I drove back eleven and a half hours after that to Dallas. And after dropping about a dozen f bombs and how you know that is going to burn and everything outside. I literally just like go of it. I thought you know what. You know there's the old Verse you reap what you sow. What goes around comes around you know and I can't I can't poison myself over that forever. But now it's just a funny story I get to talk about with you.
[00:18:16] Yeah. And it is the learning experience too because no matter what I speak at free charity event whatever there is a written agreement everything is a written agreement. So everybody is on the same page. Nobody can claim Oh I didn't say that. Well you signed the contract that says the right here and you can really sell when there's food involved but you have to take care of it in the contract like for instance. Well first of all I avoid that like the plague any luncheons. I don't like them at all. But if I had to speak at a banquet or a luncheon when I used to in my contract says all bussing of tables will stop when my introduction starts all busboys and wait personnel will be out of the room. Dessert is already down when they come into the room I mean things like that I'm very detailed I mean it looks like oh you look it kind of looks like I'm arrogant but no I've done this three thousand times and I know what's going to work great for you and great for me where a lot of times the meeting planner was the secretary yesterday and doesn't have a clue what they're doing. And they say oh yeah we're going to have food after this. They don't think in terms of hey this is the business to you. So so I'm very very strict on my agreements. And you know because a lot of times I was I was the places where people could get fired if I bombed you know they don't know any better. So I have to produce. There's a lot of money on the line like if a big convention and people paid a thousand bucks apiece to come there and 50 people decide not to come because everything was so screwed up that's 50,000 bucks in revenue to the organization. And so yeah there's a lot of money on the line at these things. And in that case I hope that guy is fitted with a lightning rod.
[00:20:17] I'm not sure the elevation of El Paso Texas but I think it's a little higher than Dallas. An even better part of that is after I booked that event I got an invitation to a megachurch in Grand Rapids Michigan like 8 9000 people every week but I was already looked at this other place and so it's my my policy of integrity. If you already booked it no matter how big or small you keep that day. And so I told them about my my buddy Chad who I ended up writing writing coauthoring my book Redeployed with.
[00:20:56] Well he got booked and he was just starting to speak and so he went. That night I called me said hey how how to go how to talk go and tell me how great it is and we sold all these books and man like. We got these awesome pictures and the great video and we got like this many new donors for our nonprofit and I'm like dude That's awesome. I didn't have the heart to tell and I didn't have the heart to tell him like what my night had been like. Yeah man I'm good and I'm in El Paso.
[00:21:25] Yeah I got the rubber chicken. You did the right thing. And it's you know you didn't do those kinds of things. I wouldn't be talking to you in a lot of other people wouldn't either. I mean all you have is your integrity. So yeah that's the way it works. In this deal you can only be so many places. I mean well technically I think when you were blown up you could probably be in a couple of places at once.
[00:21:51] I was in one place the suicide bomber he was in several places.
[00:21:57] So now I heard a crazy thing about those suicide bombers. I don't know if this is true but the interpretation is used. Everybody said well they die and they get so many virgins or something. And I saw some scholar on some very legitimate thing say that no I'm not making fun of anybody or anything. This is just a bizarre thing. She said no the interpretation is they get a whole bunch of raisins. Not virgins. And I don't know where I heard that. But this was a scholar that studies all that stuff and I thought man what a letdown that is.
[00:22:38] You know what I say I'm speaking for I don't remember what company was there was a big one was one of the Fortune I think it was a 100 company Fortune 100 and I made just came off the tongue sometimes you think of something on stage and you just say it rolls off the tongue. And I told that part about apparently he gets like 72 virgins when he dies. And then I tagged write on the end real quick. I hope they are all female. I just kept rolling about five seconds later people start laughing. It was like a delayed reaction. I might never get booked here again.
[00:23:10] They probably should be saying that anymore either today's atmosphere you'll get blown up again.
[00:23:20] So what do you like best about working for yourself and what's the worst part.
[00:23:25] Oh man. Well work the best. I would say is how much control I actually have over how my own time is spent. Now that is obviously dictated because I still have customers clients have to be certain places you know but I don't have to go sit in the cubicle for nine to five or every day. I'm not required being any certain spot. I mean I've really I choose what speaking engagements I do or don't get and I've been known for choosing the ones in November in West Palm Beach. You know. Yeah I'll be there. And you know it doesn't matter you know or Phoenix you know in the wintertime or somewhere I mean really it's how my time has been where were I have to go.
[00:24:11] And what's the worst part.
[00:24:13] I'd say the worst part about working for myself is that working for me. People might think that's weird but but here's the deal. I'm a very self-aware person and here's what I know about me and some of your listeners can relate to this I'm sure I'm extremely creative high energy person who gets too many ideas and I get off track easily.
[00:24:39] Oh my gosh. Yeah it's like so many new ideas. What I do with it. Yeah I just need a shotgun to start shooting all the squirrels you get sidetracked all the time.
[00:24:50] Yeah. So how do you reel that in. How do you keep productive with where you are.
[00:24:57] Well a lot of times I'll actually invest money on the front end into a project that will if I feel like getting off track or a shiny new object I'm like well I put 2000 bucks into that into that book cover or something or whatever that was and that's actually the case when in 2000 it was a little bit less than that but it was more than I ever paid for a book cover. Guys what are the best like in the world. And like from my next book which we'll talk about in a bit. He did that cover when I wrote that book last year that I saw a bunch of shiny squirrels and now I'm just wrapping it up. I kind of did that myself because now I'm invested. I'm not going to let any money I put into that project just go to waste. So I kind of played a trick on myself and in addition to that I get other people when other people are involved too. It's not just you. It's not. It's harder to walk away and drop a project when other people have invested their time and you paid them to be a part of it.
[00:25:57] Well yeah I've used the mind trick on myself forever and that is I announce something that I'm going to do to the world and then I'm too embarrassed to not do it so I'll scratch and crawl you know to get it done because I don't want to look like a guy that just B.S.ing all the time and dreamer. So that's the mind trick I play. Do you have any other besides speaking and books. What do you got in between to to make money if you have any online courses or anything like that.
[00:26:28] Yeah yeah I have a couple of online courses. There's one that I'll be revamping a couple I'll be revamping actually with the launch of my my next book coming out here really soon. One is called Take Back Your Life.
[00:26:42] It's an online Brazilian's course for trauma survivors military veterans people who have hit a hard rough patch in life and they're not entirely sure how to move forward yet. And it's a it's a step by step process that I experienced which was able I was able to take my next step forward and move forward in life productively beyond my setbacks and I've had multiple setbacks the suicide bombers. Just one of them probably the most physically hard to beat. It's pretty big. You know I'm revamping another one called Use Your Story which is where I. It's an online program where I teach people how to use their story in public speaking to make a difference in the world and also how to get paid doing it. And you know what what do you talk about how do you get booked. What has to be in a contract. All that stuff.
[00:27:33] So can the military pay for any of these military folks to take some of your training.
[00:27:40] Scholarshipping them through, absolutely.
[00:27:42] Scholarship for some program there some programs that their families can even take. Get paid. I don't I don't really know. But I thought I heard that there's programs for spouses of military people.
[00:27:56] Well I don't have one for a spouses in particular. But if an organization came to me and said Hey we'd like to buy access for five military spouses are or military veterans so they can go through your course. You know we would work that out. It's not a usual thing I do. And so we don't really have a backend set up for facilitating that on autopilot. But now and then we have something like that happening so we'll just manually work it out.
[00:28:23] So tell us about that new book.
[00:28:26] Well the new book is called Resilience booklet.
[00:28:28] It will be out in two to three years right.
[00:28:32] Actually by the time this podcast airs it will be out. It's called the resilience booklet and it's about how extreme survivors overcome massive challenges. And the premise really is I've noticed that some people bounce back when they go through trauma or challenges and some people don't. And that really bothered me. My first couple of years of speaking because I bounced back. I just really didn't know how I did it. I just sort of did. And the book I talk about some of the primary habits of what I call the world's most resilient people and how to apply those to your own life and circumstances so you can be stronger and more successful move forward. And you know I mean I would say my 12 closest friends are all extreme tragedy survivors whether they're rape survivors sexual assault extreme burn victims like worse than I was 80 plus percent. Third degree burns missing arms legs eyes.
[00:29:34] I'm not sure I want to be your friend.
[00:29:38] I have even more friends who are not mangled. Preface that there. You know. Here's how I learned this stuff. I learned it through my own personal life experience what I do realize is not always universal to everybody but it's insightful. The thing that helped me move forward. One of the biggest things was having these other people come into my life and learning from them how they moved past a certain issue because I knew that they just read about this stuff like you can't fake 85 percent. Third degree burns on your body or was like This guy survived it. How did he make sense of this. How did you get to a point where you could move forward again or go up in public or get on stage and talk about it. And so there's all these things. That's how I've learned in addition to the fact I've read a ton and so I've researched human resilience a lot. And so this is basically the resilience book is my condensed simplified version taking a complex topic that everyone wants to know how to do and really simplifying it so that it's easy to understand and you can apply to your life right now. And so that'll be that's available at resiliencebooklet.com.
[00:30:54] And they could probably get it through blownupguy.com also right.
[00:30:57] Yes but if you go to resiliencebooklet.com. There's a number of free bonuses were given out like stuff like that audio version. The e-book free. And a few other things. And plus it's going to be it's going to be a free book just pay shipping just a few bucks. So it's a way we can get these out to more people and help a lot more people with it.
[00:31:17] We'll have all that in the show notes folks in this episode 59. So it'd be screwthecommute.com/59. Now we go take a brief break for some shoutouts and a sponsor. But when we come back Brian Fleming the blown up guy's going to tell us what a typical day is like and how he stays motivated.
[00:31:41] Let me tell you about Nick Berry. Dr Nick Berry He sells essential oils. And these are people that helped me get the podcasts started so I always want to give them a shout out. He has the site essentialoilwizardry.com and the essential oil story I have as I had a blind dog one time and I found out that if you put essential oils on the baseboards in the different rooms different scents then the dog knows where it's at. So that was a little cute extra use for essential oils. Mary Cimiluca she is a wonderful wonderful lady and a Hollywood producer director and she did the movie ViktorandImovie.com is a great documentary. Janice Meyers is from makingtraxcamping.com and she has a phrase she she teaches you how to do dispersed camping trips like what the heck is dispersed camping mean. Are you blown up and dispersed like that idiot that tried to blow up Brian. I don't know what that means she said. That's where people go on solitude and adventure camping away from developed campgrounds. So that's Janice Meyers.
[00:33:15] Our sponsor you've heard Brian talking about his life as a traveled speaker and some people are quite ready to put their toes in the water and go full blast getting training on speaking but we have a way that you can put your toes in and start learning about this even if you're employed doing something else. Amazingpublicspeaking.com has over 475 public and professional speaking techniques openings closings attention gaining devices humor the business of speaking and it's only 97 bucks for an entire year. So it also has We also have a complimentary webinars that's got 30 speaking tips and about 30 minutes or so. You can check that out. All of that will be in the show notes at screwthecommute.com/59.
[00:34:11] All right let's get back to the main event. Brian Fleming the blown up guy. Brian what's a typical day look like for you. Let's say let's do it twice. Once you're on the road speaking and then also when you're in the office what are those days look like for you.
[00:34:29] Well when I'm home it's just really waking up really whenever I want but easily woken up when my kids go to school. So I'm usually up with them and usually them and I will do push ups together before breakfast because I want my kids to be strong. Get my kids strong so they know it's something I actually heard Arnold Schwarzenegger tell a story about how his father used to make him do pushups every morning before breakfast. So we had to learn that he had to earn everything he got. And so my little 9 year old boy my 7 year old girl. They're good at pushups and when we do them together I don't just sit there and watch them I do it with them.
[00:35:09] And so we do that. Get up. They'll go to school I usually go for a run or workout. Come back drinks and coffee and eat breakfast with my wife. I'll get to work on sometime doing whatever I'm working on at that moment. I'll do Brazilian jiu-jitsu usually four nights a week in the evenings.
[00:35:26] What made you pick that as a martial art.
[00:35:27] Well most fights go to the ground in the first 15 seconds. And Brazilian jiu-jitsu is what is all ground fighting. And it's I mean if you're going to be on the ground fighting which is going to be everybody unless you get lucky and knock somebody out in one hit you're going to have to know how to fight on the ground. And if you don't and they do you're really in big trouble. And the military. They teach Brazilian jiu-jitsu. That's their number one self defense training. Is that actual martial art. And so I had some experience with that from the past as well.
[00:36:03] Yeah. The reason I ask because I I'm kind of a self defense expert. I have over a hundred violent confrontations bikers trying to kill me. Gunfights knife fights and studying various arts all my life and I only started to study it a little bit of Brazilian jiu-jitsu Knowing that there's a possibility I'll get knocked to the ground. Most of my fighting has been up fighting and to know what to do down there. But I don't want to stay down. In fact some major major Brazilian jiu-jitsu people you would have heard of gave me my money back when they try to tell me Oh well yeah you hold this guy here and tire him out. And I'm thinking oh is that right. OK well why you're trying to tire me out. I'm going to take my folder out with one hand and disembowel before your buddies come kick my brains out. I do believe in learning that but I don't want to be on the ground. You know you want to get the hell off the ground.
[00:37:06] I do a lot of Muay Thai also which is stand up kickboxing because that's where it starts again. I'm with you in the sense that if it doesn't have to go to the ground don't because you know the guy might have two ugly cousins come up.
[00:37:20] They're going to kick your brains out or you could be laying in glass and vomit and everything else.
[00:37:28] You never know I always figure get good at stand up get good on the ground and don't ever get down there if you don't have to.
[00:37:36] Because I see some of these people on purpose trying to go to the ground. That's great if you're in the match you know but not on the street where people don't care they don't care. There's no rules. I want to ask you another thing about your kids. Do you watch. I mean that's really great that you're getting them strong as as a young kid to get that in their head. What about their diet. You pay attention to that or do they just eat whatever all the other kids eat.
[00:38:09] No actually my wife and I Are pretty intentional about our diet and what we eat. My biggest thing is I like to feel good and if I eat like crap I don't feel good. And so like any kids we let our kids you know have normal foods like pizza you know the stuff you shouldn't have. Every now and then but we we tend to eat pretty healthy. I wouldn't say we're total health nuts in the in the in the the imagined definition of that but we are intentional about what we eat. So we do eat a lot a lot of like meat that I've hunted you know and a lot of vegetables things like that best probably 60 to 70 percent of what we eat in my house. But then there's always time for cheating because I like ice cream and chocolate. So you know we're intentional but we're not. I guess you say total prudes with it.
[00:39:07] Yeah but it's just be a lot of the kids are coming up through the ranks. They don't make them go to gym class they're just you know they they're getting a really bad start health wise.
[00:39:16] Gym class is a joke from when I was a kid. Even more of a joke than when you were a kid. I don't think they climb ropes anymore because they think someone would be offended if they can't do it. Which is the whole point.
[00:39:29] True they're looking at the rope participation trophy. Yeah I know that you haven't seen me for a long time but I lost about 100 pounds since the last time you saw me but basically on a ketogenic kind of lifestyle. So it's a very low low carb but when you brought up hunting I'm thinking oh man I was in a hunting accident. I'm sure you don't know about it in January and it would have been a great story had I got shot but I fell on a log and tore my intestines. I'm still recovering from it. Nine months later but the worst part of it Brian was they're dragging me out of the woods screaming like a baby 13 inches of snow in a blizzard. And I swear I could hear a bunch of deer laughing. Nice try. No I think they were saying nice try though now that I think of it. I'm coming back from it. So how do you stay motivated.
[00:40:44] I got some beef with motivation. And here's the thing. Truthfully I don't always stay motivated and I think anybody who's totally honest will tell you the same. Motivation is one of those things that just comes and goes. It's a rollercoaster. But I am deeply driven and I deeply deeply believe in the work that I do and I know that it helps people. And I know that my time on this Earth is short and the fear of regret more than anything that is like not doing something I want to do you know not doing something and then never knowing what could have been. I would say I'm more pulled along by a strong conviction to make my life count and make it meaningful. And I expect things to go wrong along the way. So I really just embrace the suck when they do. And I just know it's part of the process. And here's where this comes from though. When I woke up that day in Kandahar after the suicide bombing I was pretty sure I was going to die. And I kind of dealt with that. Where will I go. I'm a person of faith and so I really think about that. But what I did come to mind when you're when you think you're about to die. Only the most important things come to mind. It was these two thoughts. One thought but they're there two. It was what did I do with my life that mattered. And what did I do for other people. And in that moment I really couldn't answer that question to my own satisfaction. And that was that was literally Tom the most terrifying experience I've ever had. It was more terrifying than the explosions gunfights and shootouts you know getting into it with terrorists. It was this ultimate unchangeable sense of regret and remorse that I'm 20 or 21 years old. It's all this life is already over with and I didn't feel like I did anything that made a difference. And I just kind of I was born into this world. I kind of did my thing. Nothing really meaningful and now it's over with. And that was that was the worst experience ever. And so that's what to talk about motivation. I wouldn't say I'm motivated I'm driven and I'm driven by that because I don't want to get to the end of my life dying slowly on a death bed If I had the privilege and think that that same question Did I make my life count and not be to be without an answer again. It's kind of like fool me once shame on you fool me twice shame on me. I know the questions I'm going to ask if I end up having the privilege of dying slowly and I don't want to be without answer or an answer that satisfies me.
[00:43:23] Very powerful stuff. I want to ask you one more question about your kids. How old are they.
[00:43:28] There are nine and seven.
[00:43:30] If I ask them What's daddy do. What would they say.
[00:43:37] Probably a number of things. Writes books speaks Brazilian ju-jitsu yells sometimes travels a lot. Things like that.
[00:43:51] So they get an idea of the do they have any kind of feel at that age of the how you're helping people.
[00:44:00] Yeah I think they do. In fact I just gave my son some public speaking advice this morning because he's presenting a science project in front of the class and I'll tell you that I don't care who's in there that's going to be the most well put together three minute speech in that class because I know the structure. I know how to tell a good story. I just had him fill in the details and helped him polish it up.
[00:44:27] Oh boy I wish I had known about it until I was in my 30s.
[00:44:33] But I tell everybody high school college kids. If there's one skill you need to become good at it's public speaking because you can take it anywhere. You can suck at everything but if you can speak I mean you can eat you can provide you can do stuff.
[00:44:50] Yeah and even if you are in a job again you're going to get raises you're going to be the last one that gets fired because you're able to motivate the troops and you you're a good communicator to the public and everything else so you'll be the last one to go.
[00:45:03] When you're willing to get up and speak and represent the company or organization you're seen as a leader immediately because most of the people there are like they say they're more afraid of that than death.
[00:45:14] Yeah they're hiding from it. So it's been great catching up with you Brian. We could go on all day. I love hearing your stories and how you turned something so horrendous into something so great that's helping so many people and I don't think it goes unnoticed because I'm sitting back here thinking of all the you probably saved some lives probably a lot of lives for people that were internally ready to explode like that idiot next to you. And they didn't because of what you told them so you know. Good for you. Good for you. Hope you like this special episode this is episode 59. Brian Fleming the blown up guy. Make sure you visit the show notes so you can see all his great stuff. Take advantage of it and please subscribe and review. If you don't know how to do that you can learn at screwthecommute.com we have instructions for you newbies out there that maybe you just got exposed to these things and I will catch you on the next episode. See you later.
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