Tom Bilyeu is the co-founder and President of Quest Nutrition, the second fastest growing privately owned company in the United States (currently valued at over $1 billion). He is also the founder of Impact Theory, a show dedicated to helping you achieve your limitless potential.
Favorite Success Quote
“Do and believe that which moves you towards your goals”
Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense.
1. Find That Thing That Makes You Feel Alive
We live in an age of unprecedented freedom.
Never before in the history of the human race have there been so many options available to so many members of the general populace.
In the 21st century, our options and opportunities, like our potential, are nearly limitless.
Traveling across the globe is easier than it’s ever been, growing your brand and authority has never been so scalable, and the ability to build a wildly successful business is now open to anybody with access to the internet.
Despite the tremendous number of resources and the almost limitless amount of opportunity circulating the modern economy, recent polls still indicate that nearly 70% of the American workforce is disengaged with their career!
How can this be?
In an era of unparalleled choices and opportunity more than two-thirds of the entire nation spends 40+ hours of their week doing something they hate!
While every individual is different and each circumstance is unique, I personally believe that the primary reason for this disconnect is simple.
People are scared.
They are scared that pursuing their dreams will be hard, they are scared that following their passions will be too difficult, and they are scared that they will fail.
But guess what?
Regardless of the path you choose to pursue, there will be challenges, there will obstacles, and there will be hardships. The struggle is an inevitable part of the human condition.
No matter what path you choose to pursue, you will face challenges and trials, you will fail, and you will probably want to quit more than just once. But, if you decide to pursue that thing that makes you come alive, the thing that lights a fire inside of you, the thing that you are willing to devote the rest of your life to…
Nothing will stop you.
2. Tailor Your Activities to Achieve Cognitive Optimization
Since Tom founded one of the fastest growing health and nutrition companies in the world, it should come as little surprise that one of his “Secrets to success” is methodically optimizing his cognitive performance.
No matter what goal you are pursuing, you will need to be operating at full blast in order to effectively make decisions, execute on ideas, and move the needle forward.
And the quickest way to improve your own performance is to optimize the performance of the gray matter in between your ears.
But how does one actually do this? How do you totally optimize your mind without spending thousands of dollars on supplementation, smart drugs, and crazy bio-hacking equipment?
The truth is surprisingly unsexy.
For Tom, it all starts with sleep. He is in bed every night by 9 p.m. and only wakes up whenever he feels rested and ready to attack the day. This is crucial to ensuring optimal brain performance since the majority of memory, association, and cellular repair happens while we are asleep.
After optimizing his sleep, Tom will then head to the gym every single morning, flooding his brain and body with dopamine, endorphins, and endocannabinoids and getting his mind and body into a peak state.
With his workout concluded, Tom will sit in silence to spend time “Thinkitating” which is, as Tom puts it, “Applying the afterglow of meditation to solve the greatest challenges in your life.”
Basically, after concluding a short meditation session using Mark Divine’s box breathing technique, he will sit back and consciously contemplate the greatest challenges he’s facing in his life allowing his mind and subconscious to search for an answer to the problem.
Then, with his exercise and thinkitation done, Tom hits the books and will consciously spend an hour or more each morning filling his mind with ideas from the best and brightest individuals on the planet.
Tom attributes much of his success to this “Cognitive optimization morning routine”.
It’s not complicated, it doesn’t require much equipment, and it can be done from anywhere in the world.
If you want a more detailed description of the Impact Theory Morning Routine, you can check out this article for more info.
3. Always Focus on Delivering More Value than Expected
Imagine for a moment that you are purchasing a product and deciding between two different companies.
For the sake of the argument (and since Tom is the founder of a fitness nutrition company) let’s assume that the companies in question are selling a muscle gain supplement.
After years of research company A found a formula that helps their clients get results and they decided to follow the age-old advice “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it”.
Company B, however, is never satisfied and they continue dumping thousands of dollars a month into sourcing higher quality ingredients, finding new ways to improve their formula, and delivering more value to the end customer.
Who do you think will win?
Even though Company A has a “good” product that provides real value to their customers, Company B is unwilling to settle for “good enough”.
And let me tell you, one of the biggest traps that entrepreneurs fall into is the trap of “Good enough”.
Because the second that you stop improving your product, service, or experience somebody else who is hungrier, more motivated, and more driven than you are will steal your customers and leave you in the dust.
You must constantly improve the value that you bring to the marketplace and look for new and unique ways to expand your services to help more people.
Because at the end of the day, you will be paid in direct proportion to the amount of value that you give. And if you do more than you are paid for now, you will be paid for more than you do later.
4. Email is the Greatest Thief of Productivity
While it might seem a little bit superfluous to devote an entire key point of this interview to the topic of email, I want you to consider for a moment that the average American is estimated to spend a total of 3.2 hours per day just checking work related emails (this doesn’t include personal correspondence).
That’s almost half of their work day devoted entirely to the largely pointless act of reaching inbox zero.
During our interview, Tom admitted to having over 6,000 unopened emails sitting in his inbox and told us that he will typically look at his emails only twice a week for a few minutes.
According to conventional wisdom, there’s no way that he could effectively run a successful company spending so little time devoted to email, and yet he’s the Co-founder of one of the nation’s fastest growing companies.
If you want to become truly successful at the game of business, then you must learn to focus only on profit-producing activities.
Email is not one of those.
5. You Will Never Eliminate Pride, So Use It
While many philosophers and teachers preach the importance of eliminating pride, anyone with a basic understanding of the human condition knows that pride is an inherent part of our existence and will never be removed.
So if we cannot eliminate our pride, then what are we supposed to do?
The simple answer? Use it.
Pride and ego can actually be a phenomenal tool if they are focused on the right things.
Specifically, learning to develop immense pride around your focus on the processes, not your outcomes.
What do I mean by this?
Well, instead of priding yourself on how smart you are (which will likely lead to careless mistakes) develop immense pride in your commitment to your education.
Instead of priding yourself on your physique, strength, or endurance (all of which can be taken away with one injury) develop immense pride in your physical work ethic and desire to improve your body.
Learn to take pride in who you are instead of what you are and you will find that pride becomes an asset instead of a liability.
1. The Dark Tower I: The Gunslinger by Stephen King
2. The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell
3.Phantoms in the Brain by VS Ramachandran