The Common Path to Uncommon Success with John Lee Dumas
Welcome to episode number 93 of The Determined Mom Show. I am breaking all my rules to have our first male guest on the podcast. So very excited to introduce John Lee Dumas, the founder, and host of the award-winning Entrepreneurs on Fire. The podcast has over 1 million monthly listens and seven figures in annual revenue.
John is spreading entrepreneurial fire on a global scale. His first traditionally published book, the Common Path to Uncommon Success, is now available for pre-order at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am honored to have you here and very excited about your upcoming book. I’ve already pre-ordered both the audio and the hardcover version because I want to be able to take notes. You’re awesome. Oh, awesome. I love it. I can’t wait to get it. I’m like; Amazon told me it would be delivered on the 23rd.
So our audience at The Determined Mom Show is primarily moms that are business owners. There are also a lot of podcasters; there are a lot of authors, speakers, and entrepreneurs. I’d love to ask you some questions that can help our audience.
What will becoming a person of value do for us rather than a person of success?
It was 2012. I was six years post my military service, from 22 to 26 years old. I was 32 years old at that point. I was in my sixth year of what I call a struggle. I struggled for all six of those years post-military.
I tried law school, dropped out, corporate finance, commercial real estate, and residential real estate. I need something else. I was struggling and living paycheck to paycheck, essentially.
I was broke, I was unhappy, and I was unfulfilled. I all the things. And then I read that quote by Albert Einstein, which is to try not to become a person of success, but rather a person of value. And Amanda, somebody reached out of the page and slapped me because I realized I’ve only been chasing success over the past six years.
I didn’t even know what success was or what it meant, but I was chasing it: fame, fortune, money, whatever that was. It was, you know, a pretty sad existence. It was six years of struggle.
And I said, well, listen, Albert Einstein’s a pretty smart guy, so I’m going to go ahead, I’m going to take his advice, and I’m going to try to become a person of value for maybe the first real-time in my life, at least for the first time since I was an officer in the Army.
That was what I committed to. I committed to becoming a person of value. I didn’t know what that meant then, but it planted a seed, which led to me, three months later, launching Entrepreneurs on Fire, the first daily podcast interviewing entrepreneurs.
Now, as you and I are sitting here, 3000 episodes later, almost a decade later, over a hundred million total listens later, I realize that the person of value means that you are delivering consistent content to an audience that is solving a real problem, not just solving a problem, solving a real problem.
And when you can do that, you can solve a real problem by delivering free and consistent content. That’s being a person of value, and I was not doing that for the first 32 years of my life.
When I started doing that with a daily podcast, delivering a free consistent podcast episode that was solving a real problem, giving people the information they wanted and needed, that’s when everything turned, that’s when the light switch flipped, and I started having the success.
A very valuable way to think about what you’re doing in this world is to think about the potential ripple effect it will have. Because listen, when we first start doing anything, We’re speaking to an MT room. When I launched my podcast, I needed more listeners or an audience. I was talking to an MT room, but I had faith that people would listen, and when they heard, it would have value.
And sure enough, that first episode, which had zero listens, now has over a million listens because people found my show months and years later, went back, and listened to episode one as they started going through the journey of listening to entrepreneurs on fire.
Even though I was speaking to an empty room at first, you know, it soon turned into a pretty full room and it’s, you know, crazy to see how that happens. So what I want to share with people is this, when you are first starting, and you’re a little, am I impacting people? Like, am I adding value to this world?
The answer is yes if you can answer this question, yes. Could you please provide it? The best solution to a real problem, then yes, your ripple effect will happen. It’s just a matter of when because people will find you. Cause people will always beat the path down to the doorstep of the number one solution to a real problem that they have.
And then they’ll go back and consume all of your content. And so you’ll always be speaking to people in the future when you follow that. Now the thing is, and this is one thing you have to understand and realize when you’re first creating content. Am I the best solution to a real problem?
Because people don’t want the second best, they don’t want the 10th best solution. They want a different solution than the 345th. They want the best solution to a real problem that they have. You will inspire people when you’ve nailed that down and actually started creating that content. And those people you inspire and give amazing value to are now going to do something they might not otherwise have done.
And they’re now going to create their content and their big idea and their value to the world, and they’re going to inspire a whole other sector of individuals who otherwise may have yet to be inspired. Because they didn’t have that person to do so, those individuals have never heard of you, your show, or your content, but that’s the ripple effect.
That’s the third, fourth, fifth, maybe even six degrees of separation that causes a ripple effect of amazingness in this world. And I love that my 3000-plus episodes are having that ripple effect today in this world.
It’s common for human beings. I don’t like to differentiate between entrepreneurs. To be a human being is to have fears, have doubts. Have the imposter syndrome. Question this to have emotionally, incredibly gratifying, incredibly emotionally trying days. Sometimes the best. What you think might be the best life experience is a huge struggle, which I’m sure you’ve talked about.
Things like postpartum depression on the show, which I have no experience or knowledge in, but I’ve, you know, had very close friends who have experienced it, who are like, I just don’t get it. I wanted this child my whole life, and now I’m so depressed post-birth.
This is exactly what happens to human beings. Now I can do things that will help me: eat the right foods. Don’t take any pharmaceutical medications, exercise, get enough sleep, and have an accountability group. People I look up to and trust can help, support, and guide me.
Having a loving family, having friends that I engage with, like, you can stack the oz in your favor, but again, you’re still going to have those, those tough days cause that’s being a human being. But when you start stacking the odds against yourself, you’re just a tick time bomb.
You’re careless with your money when you’re, you know, drinking alcohol often when you’re taking pharmaceutical drugs, as an easy way out because I need them to sleep or I need them for depression, or I need them for this. When you’re not exercising, when you’re not sleeping, when you’re just not taking care of yourself. So stack the odds in your favor by doing the prior, and those stack odds, you know, against you by doing what I just shared.
But that’s when you educate yourself and realize and not go down this crusade path, as I’ve imbibed alcohol for most of my life, and I’m not against having a drink occasionally. When you don’t educate yourself correctly and realize that that glass of wine at night inhibits your deep sleep, which is then making you wake up not feeling as refreshed as you otherwise would’ve been, which has a cascading negative effect.
So you don’t work out that day because you’re feeling overtired, and maybe it’s a cascading effect like this. Everything you do has consequences, pros, and cons. You have to start making more suitable decisions.
Step six, chapter six in the book, is about joining or creating your masterminds. I brought Jamie Masters in, who is my first-ever mentor. She’s brilliant and amazing when it comes to masterminds, and they’re so important in your journey. I mean, if you have a group of people that you know I can trust and respect, and you’re going to meet every week, and you’re going to, you know, hold each other accountable, support, guide each other, you know, all the things.
A game changer. I will be honest with you because I know moms like being; when people are honest, everyone does mastermind wrong, period. Across the board, everybody’s doing them wrong. Thanks to Jamie and me, who collaborated on step six, chapter six. For the first time, you have a chance because you might not implement it, but you at least have a chance to do it right.
There’s a very, very specific way to do masterminds, right? And then essentially every other way, you’re doing them wrong. And I share exactly why in the details in the book, and there’s a little wiggle room here and there with some of the things I talk about, but very little because of you. An opportunity to join or create the right masterminds or you can keep doing it wrong if you’re currently in a mastermind.
We’ve published our monthly income reports for 91 months because I love showing people the truth of running a business: the good, the bad, and the ugly. And I’m going, to be honest with you, again, if you’re listening to some of my voice or seeing my face, your content production plan could be better.
It’s not just, it is terrible, and I understand that because mine was awful. I had a terrible content production plan over a decade of busting my butt of collaborating with people much smarter than me to put in the work. As you and I are talking, I have a great content production plan again ten years later, but you need a better content production plan, which is sabotaging.
In undermining your efforts as a success because you cannot be successful with a terrible content production plan. And since you have a terrible content production plan, you won’t be able to find the success you want. You won’t be able to achieve the financial freedom and fulfillment you want.
That’s why the average chapter in this book is 3,500 words, and chapter seven s 13,500 words. There’s a reason why it’s five times larger than most other chapters. It could be a business book in and of itself because after 13,500 words, you for the first time in your life will at least know what an amazing content production plan looks like and potentially have the opportunity to implement it if you’re willing to put in the work and have an amazing content production plan, which will change your life.
I’m super on step one. Listen, step one is admitting it. Yes. And I had to admit it back when mine was terrible. So that you know, you are admitting it now is step one. Those people that are thinking so well, mine’s not terrible.
You’re not going to make it because yours could be better. You’ll need to admit it first. Because then you need to make a real change. But you have the opportunity and step-by-step guide to making it happen now. And by. Nothing in this book is my genius. Nothing in this book is my knowledge. It is the 3000 entrepreneurs that I’ve interviewed over the past decade who make up this book and make this genius.
And by the way, in chapter seven, step seven, I bring in my fiance Caitlin Erickson, the machine behind Entrepreneurs on Fires content production plan, and she crushes it in that chapter.
I needed to challenge myself. I needed to get outside my comfort zone and push the envelope, and I knew honestly that I could not write a fantastic traditionally published book. I needed help. I needed a publisher; I needed an editor. I needed a book launch team that knew what they were doing because I’m a podcaster.
Writing this book took me eight months, two hours a day, writing 71,000 words. It took me 480 hours to write This book poured my heart, sweat, soul, and tears into this thing. And I needed an excellent editor. I needed a fantastic publisher. I needed that to make the book it needed to be.
I want to follow the traditional book publishing routes and listen; everything has pros and cons. I miss your flexibility when publishing and getting things out there and blah, blah, blah. But I also loved having a team around me, and I could go with experienced people to publish books. And it’s been an excellent experience. And we went all in. I partnered with Harper Collins Leadership, one of the big five publishers. And we’re off to the races.
I am still determining if I’ll ever write another book. If I do, it’ll be quite a ways time from now, and I’ll sit down at that time and evaluate the options and proceed forward. It’ll probably be another hundred episodes in the future. But I enjoyed chatting with you today and hope everybody also enjoyed it. And if you visit uncommon success book.com, you can start your journey, which is a 17-step roadmap to financial freedom and fulfillment. Thank you so much.