Goat Wrestling Perseverance

Episode 31 - Parents - Get Your Kids for This Episode with Jordan Gross and host Dave Swanson

June 15, 2019 Dave Swanson / Jordan Gross Season 2 Episode 31
Goat Wrestling Perseverance
Episode 31 - Parents - Get Your Kids for This Episode with Jordan Gross and host Dave Swanson
Chapters
Goat Wrestling Perseverance
Episode 31 - Parents - Get Your Kids for This Episode with Jordan Gross and host Dave Swanson
Jun 15, 2019 Season 2 Episode 31
Dave Swanson / Jordan Gross

I guide people to their Cloud Nine lives by helping them discover their true passions and purpose. By designing a creative, intensive, and FUN 9-step process, I have guided startup founders as well as employees at Google and Amazon in overcoming uncertainty and discovering what it truly is that brings them meaning and fulfillment.

I am also a best-selling author of a book called Getting COMFY: Your Morning Guide to Daily Happiness, I am a TEDx Speaker, and I have founded multiple companies and organizations!


If you want to start living your own cloud nine life, then visit below to hear stories, tips, and interviews of people living out their cloud nine moments, days, and lives!

Medium

Website

TedX Speech

Dave Swanson

Website

Book 

Goat Wrestling Perseverance Clothes 

Free Chapter of my Bestselling Book? 

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/GWPPodcast)

Show Notes Transcript

I guide people to their Cloud Nine lives by helping them discover their true passions and purpose. By designing a creative, intensive, and FUN 9-step process, I have guided startup founders as well as employees at Google and Amazon in overcoming uncertainty and discovering what it truly is that brings them meaning and fulfillment.

I am also a best-selling author of a book called Getting COMFY: Your Morning Guide to Daily Happiness, I am a TEDx Speaker, and I have founded multiple companies and organizations!


If you want to start living your own cloud nine life, then visit below to hear stories, tips, and interviews of people living out their cloud nine moments, days, and lives!

Medium

Website

TedX Speech

Dave Swanson

Website

Book 

Goat Wrestling Perseverance Clothes 

Free Chapter of my Bestselling Book? 

Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/GWPPodcast)

Dave Swanson:

Welcome to goat wrestling perseverance podcast. Today I'm here with a guest that is a Tedx speaker, number one bestselling author, graduated from Kellogg School of Management and he's startup founder two times. But beyond that, I want to make sure that if you're listening to this podcast right now, this is the one podcast that you want to have your children listen to because I think this is a story that is not just for children, were understanding perseverance from a young age, but this is for all of us. And so today I want to welcome Jordan Gross to the show. Thank you Jordan.

Jordan Gross:

Hey Dave, thank you so much for having me on. I'm so excited to tell my story and I really appreciate you just being willing to, to allow me to share that story because we just connected through linkedin and it's amazing the power of a, of our online world turning into the offline world. So thank you so much for having me and allowing me to do this chat.

Dave Swanson:

Well, thank you Jordan. And also the audience knows and they're waiting to hear this story of you at 10 years old. And like I said, if you haven't grabbed your one of your kids yet to hear this, please go do so.

Jordan Gross:

Yeah, of course. So I was a 10 year old kid and I was very bubbly, very happy, go lucky. And it was an extremely bubbly day because as a young soccer player, my friends and I, our team, our travel team, the Dick sells thunder. We just won some tournament, some tournament we Columbus Day weekend tournament, I'll just say, cause I don't exactly remember the date. Um, but anyway, I was on Long Island in New York and I remember the place we went to eat after so clearly. Right. And I went with my friend and his family. So it was me, my friend Eric, his dad's Zach and his sister's Paris and Carly. And we went to Ben's Deli on Long Island and I was a, I was a bigger guy, so I ordered, you know, some chicken fingers and maybe a Turkey sandwich, maybe a soup as well. And I probably polished off my friend chicken fingers too. And you know, maybe had a bite of his sister's Burgers as well. But, uh, I digress because the, the day was so amazing because of the service that we had at Ben's Deli and our waiter, I'll never forget, his name was Bruce, and he was a bald guy. He had a mustache, he was wearing glasses and he came over to our table and he talked to Eric and me about soccer, about our tournament. We just won. He brought Paris and Carly crayons to draw on their place mats. And it was just this really special bond that we made between Bruce and, and our table toward the end of the meal. I remember Bruce came over and he gave Zach the check and he to Zach. So are these three yours? And he points to Eric, Paris and Carly and that curious, happy 10 year old kid me that moment said, oh, you got it right Bruce, how'd you know? So this next moment I'll, I'll truly never forget. Bruce looks at me. And then he looked at Carly, you looked at Paris and he looked at her and you look back at me and he looked at Zach and finally he looks at all of us and he says, well, then three are skinny. And Oh, day of, I remember that smile turning into a frown. And I remember I could feel the awkwardness at the table. I remember my friends that Zach saying, don't worry about it Jay. He didn't mean it like that. And as I look back now, I don't think Bruce meant it like anything, but it's still what he said. It's still what I heard, right? And I mentioned, I knew I was a bigger guy, but this was the first time I really heard it out loud. This was the first time that I felt different. So with that phrase, that expression ringing in my mind, well then through your skinny, I went home after, after lunch that day and I looked in the mirror and I said, how else am I different? Right? And I noticed my long hair and I realized that people commonly, we're mistaken me for a girl at age 10 and then I noticed my glasses on my face. I had these big thick blue glasses because I'm, I was cross eyed at that age. So I realized that too. And I remember people calling me Nerdy, right? And then last but not least, my last name is gross. So my classmates, people who I knew would already say it, Oh, before they even knew who I was, right? So there I had the quad Fecta, these four seemingly negative characteristics that could really impact my life and affect the person who I can become in a very negative way. But instead of choosing to allow them to affect me in that way, I chose a different path. I chose a path where I actually embraced those comments and I reframed my own situation to make light, to make positive, to actually use each one as a great asset for me. So my being bigger than everybody else, right? I use that to excel on the field, becoming the number one soccer goalie in all of New York state. By the time I finished up high school, my glasses, right, people called me nerdy. So I embraced that role and I became incredibly studious. So I finished in the top 5% of my high school, went on to Northwestern university and then graduated from Kellogg a year after that. Um, my last name being gross, I knew people were going to laugh at me anyway, so I use it as an opportunity to laugh with them. Right. And I would say, who was that? It would discuss things, something like that. Right? So all the kids be laughing and, and I got the last two, rather than have them just laugh at me and be the quiet kid who just said, yeah, that's me. Um, and then people can't see me right now, Dave. But as you can see, I have short hair, so I cut my hair eventually. But uh, for so long I was known as the funny, athletic and a smart and goalie with the long hair. So looking back on that scenario, it was like this moment where I had two different paths I could have taken and one path was to accept Bruce's comments and hide in the background. But the other path was to embrace Bruce's comments and bring them to the forefront. So that's what I was able to do in that scenario. And that's how I've lived my entire life since then.

Dave Swanson:

That's such an amazing story. And we'll talk more about what your parents did during this time to support that. But you know, I got to tell this story of, you know, eighth grade for me, I had braces, I had glasses. Uh, I wasn't good at anything. I was five foot two at 92 pounds as a freshman in high school. And I was like, you know, my number one dream is to get a basketball scholarship or to go out there and do that and you know, five, two and 92 pounds. That, that's not exactly starting material at any college that you hear of. But yeah, I understand that, you know, the, uh, the braces, the glasses of looking at yourself and choosing to do something different about it and it's, it may be an external thing, but a lot of the times the external turns internal and I think, you know, you were able to intrinsically take what was not, I mean it was a bad comment the way he said it, but you are able to kind of take that environment and thrive in it to, to become better from it. But I'd like to hear about, did you come home and tell your parents and story and did your parents say, you know, go out there and fight the stigma that we have. Like, wait, how did that go on that kind of environment?

Jordan Gross:

Yeah. So it's funny, I actually never told that story until I started speaking recently, publicly. And uh, even when I came home that day, my parents knew, right. And my mom, you know, she has this intuitive sense of something is wrong, something is up, something happened. And she could tell that it was about my weight because I started to jog up and down in the shower and I would run up the stairs and run back down and I would sit and jogging, stand and jog in place when I watched TV instead of sat down. Right? So she knew that something happened. Um, and that's really what I attribute, even though you said, you know, might be this, this intrinsic motivation afterward, but I, I attribute the, the way that I was able to respond to the situation rather than react impulsively to my support system, to the people around me, to my mom and dad, my brother, my friends, my friend's parents. Even Zach in that moment saying he didn't mean it like that, Jay, like even that was, was big for me because it showed me that there was somebody who thought differently. You know, so many. So often we allow the one negative to outweigh the hundreds and thousands of positives, right? So this was that first time where I realized, you know, people are gonna to have their, their opinions and their perspectives. But if there's one person who's thinking positively, why would I not choose that person? Why would I choose the one negative overall, the other positives? Right. So, um, yeah, it's, it's, it just became all about framing for me and that's, that's how I'm doing it now too.

Dave Swanson:

You know, it's, you've said something that I think anyone listening, you know, in the audience right now needs to understand is that we all go through this kind of negative self feelings we do at some point. Yeah, it's your age, maybe 10 years old and maybe five years old. It may not happen until 25 or 30 when something really hits you and then everyone goes through this. But if you can just find that way and learn to no that no one else can tell you what to think or what to feel, I think that's a key thing. You know, like although the waiter said that to you, he didn't control how you felt about yourself. He couldn't control your emotions. You can't control your thoughts. And I think that's really important, especially in a generation today where social media out there can make you feel so bad about yourself that you're not doing all the amazing things like everybody else's. And you know, now you're letting basically AI and the Internet take over how you're feeling about yourself. And it's the same thing that the Internet, social media, that's the same thing as the waiter colony of that. And I think it's a, it's an important thing to point out here or what are your, what are your thoughts about that?

Jordan Gross:

Yeah, I love how you phrased that because so often I tell people that it is, you can only control what is within your control. Right? And I couldn't control Bruce's comments. You know, I, I had no way to control those comments, but what I could control was the way that I responded to those comments. So I did, I want to control it in a way that made me a person who I didn't want to be moving forward. Somebody who became very isolated and depressed and alone or could I control it in a way where I embrace the comments and use them to make friends, right? Be The funny guy, have the lively personality to excel on the sports field, you know? Um, and I chose the latter and I would choose it every single time. And I would definitely highly emphasize other people to choose it every time too.

Dave Swanson:

Okay. Well, you know, it's, it's awesome to hear these kinds of stories that just didn't exist 40 years ago or 30 years ago. This was just 20 some years ago. And so the, these, these kind of interactions are going to happen throughout your life and it's making that choice. And one of the things that you decided to do, 90 interviews a 90 days, right? So I think that's amazing, but not only that, you also had your book coming out called the journey to cloud nine and I'd like the audience to hear a little bit more about the book, about your, your, you know, kind of persevering to get 90 interviews as well. I think that's a great story.

Jordan Gross:

Yeah. So, so this is why I really wanted it to be on this show because getting the interviews, getting the book out there my entire life, even though I say I preface everything I do in my talks, whatever my books with, I have been so blessed and so fortunate to have an amazing upbringing. You know, amazing people in my life. I have not experienced trauma that many others have, right? But even with that, I still have faced a pretty good amount of adversity. Right? So you mentioned the 90 podcasts in 90 days and, and what that process has been like, and I'll even speak back to a little bit of, uh, the, the skills that I've obtained in overcoming rejection. Right? And it goes back to when I was a high school senior, my only goal, my dream in life was to play soccer in college, right? And I had 25 schools on a list and I reached out to all 25 coaches and every single one got back to me. They came and they saw me play and I was a goalie. So they saw me and goal. And some of them said, you know, you didn't do much that game. And that was just out of my control. So they crossed me off the list. Other said, you know, he played well there, said, we don't want you. Right? So I was left with five schools and a of those five schools, I think they all told me at the time, you know, you're a great kid, you're a great goalie, but we're going with another guy or this guy is taller than you are. He has more potential. Right? So I didn't accomplish my dream and uh, I had to figure out a different way to define success for myself and then achieve it. And I take that definition with me into everything I do now. Uh, so it's how do I respond to moving forward? Right? So even with these 90 podcasts in 90 days, you and I chatted before and we said, uh, you know, people don't respond or people respond coldly, right? And the way that I'm overcoming that, that I actually want to share is by focusing on the authentic human connection. And by not just sending out this copied and pasted a message to each person where it says, Yadda, Yadda, Yadda, I want to be on your podcast. Please have me on your show. Right? But no, it's rather I do a little bit of research into each person and what they're doing. And you know, I'll, I'll try to listen to an episode before going on the show. I'll try to, um, look up people's backgrounds, guests that they've had on, right? So it just feels more organic, more natural rather than this one way transaction of you are doing something for me by having me on your podcast. Right. So, I mean, I hope that's how you felt in the way that we interacted in got gotten touch. But, um, that's, that's what I'm trying to do. And I think that is something that's shown that's key in overcoming rejection. Because the last thing I'll say is this phrase that my mom always says, and I'm sure so many other people say it, but my mom says it a lot. Um, she says, what's the worst thing that could happen is just as they say no, right? But what I want to do with that phrase is actually tinker it a little bit. And, and based off of what I just said it, it's not just what's the worst thing that can happen. They'll say no, because let's say I reached out to you and I really wanted to get on your show, right? I could have just said, hey, Dave, put me on your show right now. Like something really terrible, a terrible message, pretty much. And then you say no, right? But you wouldn't just say no. You'd probably say no, this kid doesn't add any value. He's rude. I never want to meet him. I don't want to support anything that he does. I might even want to tell other podcasters not to have him on a show, right? So that's not the worst thing that can happen if I approach it in that way. So rather I, I'd like to rephrase that, that sentence and say, what's the worst thing that can happen if I present it to the best of my ability? Right? And that's what I mean by writing this message to you that is authentic and genuine and trying to come from a place of this mutual value rather than this one way street. So that's what I've learned in this, uh, podcast journey of, of reaching out to people in overcoming rejection is the rejection hurts less if you know that you did everything that you could, uh, to get the acceptance.

Dave Swanson:

I love that. That's what your mom said. Yeah. Those phrases in our mind. But I'm going to take you a step further by, you know, changing out one word because it's a mindset. And the way I've always done it when I've done some presentation like that is I always say, well, what's the best thing that can happen? MMM. And so when you take nice, what's the best thing that can happen? It may be, hey, that one person that caught me on my podcast is now it become a sponsor. Or this person's listening to all my books, or this person's done. Like, I think about those people in the positivity of that. I think if it's, it's a mindset change, right? And so I'll throw that out there to you and you can take it for your speeches as well as what's the best thing that can happen.

Jordan Gross:

Absolutely.

Dave Swanson:

You know, and, and take that mindset with you. And so, Jordan, you just shared some amazing stories today. I don't want them to forget about your book coming out called the journey to cloud nine. I forget sometimes. That's okay. But, uh, great stories today and like I said, I, I hope, you know, the audience did bring out, you know, allowed their kids to listen to something like this because it's something we're all facing at some point in our lives. Right. And like you said, it's just a matter of how we allow ourselves to approach it. And so thank you for being on.

Jordan Gross:

Thank you so much for having me on. And yeah, that's right. The journey to cloud nine is this book that really is focused on the positive and living a meaningful and purposeful life. So the cool thing about is that it's actually a, a fictional tale, a little fictional spin on the personal growth and development world. So that'll be out and around and about six months from when we're talking now and on June 12th so thank you so much again, Dave, for having me on, and I hope you got something out of it and I hope the audience does as well.