Mindset and Winning | Bennie Fowler | 323

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Bennie Fowler is an NFL wide receiver, leadership coach and consultant, and Amazon best-selling author. After playing football for Michigan State, Bennie was signed by the Denver Broncos in 2014. He has played as a free agent for almost seven years and recently signed with the New Orleans Saints.

In addition to his football career, Bennie also helps small business owners and entrepreneurs gain the momentum and clarity they need to run their businesses. With his unique coaching method, Bennie provides a framework for setting goals, driving purpose, and achieving exponential success.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn: 

  • Bennie Fowler explains what separates super performers from the crowd: their mindset
  • Bennie’s advice for navigating and eliminating self-doubt
  • The lessons Bennie learned from working alongside some of the most successful people in the world
  • How can you maintain peak performance while competing against top leaders?
  • The importance of relationship capital when running and growing a business
  • How Bennie built a foundation for his professional success
  • Bennie talks about overcoming challenges throughout his football career
  • Bennie’s favorite professional athletes and why he wanted to join the NFL
  • Who are Bennie’s inspirations, and how has he pursued lifelong learning?

In this episode…

How do you maintain peak performance in your business year after year? What separates you from the other talented entrepreneurs and business leaders in your field? And, how can you continue to grow your business, overcome challenges, and achieve long-term success?

With over seven years of experience playing as a free agent in the NFL alongside the top athletes in the nation, Bennie Fowler has mastered the art of performing at the top of his game. By eliminating self-doubt, prioritizing progress over perfection, and building relationships with leaders like Peyton Manning and Drew Brees, Bennie has made a name for himself in the competitive world of professional sports. Now, he’s here to share his wisdom about becoming a super performer and building a life of success.

Bennie Fowler, an NFL wide receiver, leadership coach and consultant, and Amazon best-selling author, joins Dan Kuschell on this episode of Growth to Freedom to discuss how you can achieve peak performance in business and in life. Bennie shares his mindset for success, his tips for eliminating self-doubt, and the lessons he’s learned from playing alongside top football champions. Plus, he gives us a glimpse into his daily routines as a successful professional athlete.

Resources Mentioned in this episode

Sponsor for this episode

Thanks for listening to this episode of growthtofreedom.com.

Are you struggling to get a steady flow of new clients every day? Or maybe hit a plateau or hit a wall in growing your business? Well, let’s help you solve this problem today. Let’s review your business and have a conversation. You can do that for free today at breakthroughstrategycall.com. That’s breakthroughstrategycall.com.

In addition, if you’re looking for a simple way to implement some of what we’ve been talking about in today’s episode, I want to encourage you to get our free small business toolkit. You can get that at activate.breakthrough3x.com. That’s activate.breakthrough3x.com.

If you’d like access to the special resources and all the show notes for this special episode, make sure to visit growthtofreedom.com.

Episode Transcript

Dan Kuschell 0:09

Welcome to growtofreedom.com, the show that brings you inspiration, transformation and leadership. We’re helping you connect the dots, see the blind spots, and get unstuck. So you can go out there and create more leads, more sales, more profits, more importantly, so you can go out there and have a bigger impact, a bigger reach and make a bigger contribution. Is that what you want? If that’s what you want, you are going to love today’s special guest expert. He’s a current NFL player, he has played three times longer than the average player in the NFL. He’s going to share exactly why he’s been able to do that peak performance strategies. He’s going to talk about what it’s taken to be able to do that relationships, and a whole lot more and why this is also special for me. If you’re new to our world, my name is Dan Kuschell. And thanks for making us part of your day. If you’ve been around a while, you probably know this. But if you’re new, this may be new to you, which is you know, on top of business, and you know, for 30 years, we’ve been helping clients from around the globe. You know, literally over 200,000 clients. We’ve coached over 5000 founders and CEOs from 180 different niche industries, 11 plus countries, in I mean just so many cool ways, with a lot of experience. On top of that one of my passions enjoys as I get to coach youth football. So our current guest today actually was introduced to me by one of our clients from embluemail.com, we’ll have links in the show notes and such. So you can learn about them, and setting up your free account with them to make your email flow, your automations just work easier. And if you want a team, they can just help you, so that one of the key staff members there Keith Richards connected. Our guest expert today, his name is Bennie Fowler. And, you know, Bennie, when I got a chance to chat, and I said, Hey, Bennie, would you mind sharing some of your wisdom and insights with our youth football team, 11 to 14 year olds? And he said, of course. And he was so gracious and just so amazing about it? And he said yes. And I said, Great. So we did this interview, and it was so good. Our business group, our entrepreneurs, our CEOs, our founders, who listen and watch our show, right? Because it was so good. And I think you’re gonna get a ton of value out of it. I mean, if you’re looking for a way to get peak performance strategies, learn, like what does it take to be able to, you know, be unique, in a way and stand out in the crowd, to differentiate yourself so that you make a long lasting impression as well as a first impression. and a whole lot more, I think you’re going to love today’s segment. No, by the way, if you love what Bennie has to share, and maybe you run a business, maybe you run a company, maybe you have a team, I’d encourage you to connect with Bennie, and the links will be in the show notes and how to be able to do that, to connect with Bennie to look to have him speak at your organization, or to be able to, you know, train your staff on peak performance or train your staff on leadership strategies, right? Because at the end of the day, if you want to get free from the business as the founder, you’ve got to have a great team, he can show you how to be able to do just that. So with that in mind, if you want to come back to this episode, go to growthtofreedom.com, that’s growthtofreedom.com. In addition, if you’re looking for some additional help with some of the things that we talked about, like getting more clients daily, or getting an operating system in place for your sales, or your marketing, or both, right, or maybe you’ve hit a plateau, or maybe you’re just burnout, because you’ve been following a lot of other experts who’ve said you know, to go out there and build your marketing, you need to be doing X, Y and Z. And what you found is you’ve done a lot of things, but you still got nothing to show for it. I want to encourage you that there’s likely a unique, different way. And we might be able to help. And so if you’d like to get our help and implementing, or helping build an operating system around your sales, revenue and marketing, then let’s schedule a call. And let’s review your business. And let’s see what we can do to help. And if we can, we’ll let you know. And if we can’t, we’ll refer you to someone who can. Essentially we’ll give you 100% free consultation. We’ll do a business review with you, identify where you’re at where you want to go. And then we’ll share some options of like what would we do if you if we were you and that’s real simple to take advantage of. You can go right now to breakthroughstrategycall.com, that’s breakthroughstrategycall.com, and set up your appointment and go from there right. Now with that in mind, I encourage you to check out what Bennie shares with you. And ideally see if you pick up some insights on your peak performance, and or how to leverage relationships so that you can have three times the impact, and three times the length working retention of anybody else in the world. And this coming from one of the top 1/10 of 1/10 of 1/10 of percent of athletes in the world playing in the NFL. So let’s join Bennie Fowler, and our fun interview with our youth football team in its entirety.

Bennie Fowler 5:26

How you doing?

Dan Kuschell 5:27

I’m doing amazing. So glad you could join us my friend.

Bennie Fowler 5:30

No problem at all. No problem at all. You don’t have the mask on from the presentation I watched?

Dan Kuschell 5:36

Yes. That’s awesome. So guys, I want to introduce you to a new friend, a friend of a friend and introduces we have a gentleman named Keith Richards, who we’re doing business with and helping their company grow, who got Bennie and I connected. If you guys don’t know, Bennie, as you’re getting a chance to see this Bennie is an NFL current player, free agent. He’s played for seven years, which is almost three times the lifespan of most NFL players. So there’s a lot of stories there in history. They’re learning lessons there and all kinds of stuff going on. He’s also a student of life. He’s a serial entrepreneur. He’s a philanthropist. He’s also an angel investor. Right? So he’s not just a guy who’s relied on football, and he’ll share some of that with you. Our theme for today guys is mindset and winning. Right? And as you guys are, you’re with us. You know, like, what do you think it takes to have the mindset to win at the highest level? Right, a couple other details about Bennie, he actually grew up in a area near where I grew up as a kid, he went to a school called Detroit Country Day, you can go look it up. The only big mistake he really made was going to that green school and college instead of the blue and gold school. But I’m not going to hold that against him. Especially because he’s willing to share his time with you guys. Overall. So that’s the big mistake he’s ever made in his life. But he seems to be doing okay with he still has a smile on his face, which I don’t get. I just don’t understand it. But, you know, there’s all kinds of lessons guys, I wanted to introduce you guys to Bennie because, you know, it’s one thing to hear from me as a coach, but he’s in the NFL right now going through all the changes in the NFL, dealing with COVID, dealing with all this stuff. And at the same time building his future success and planning. Right. He’s a student of life, like I mentioned, and I think you’re gonna learn a lot from so Bennie. It’s awesome to have you man.

Bennie Fowler 7:35

Hey, appreciate you having me today. And yes, you know, you know, feel free. Everybody who’s listening right now, you know, they could feel free to ask me any questions. But like you said, I am a student of life. And we’re talking like you said, Today we’re talking about mindset and winning. And those two go hand in hand, but it starts in the mind. It starts in the mind when you get to the professional level. And as you know, regardless if it’s professional sports or business, the mind is what separates everybody. When you’re at the top, everybody’s talented, everybody’s talented in the NFL, but the guys the Peyton Manning’s the Tom Brady’s the Drew Brees’s the Eli Manning’s, those are the four quarterbacks that I’ve played with in my career, the mind is what separates them. And that’s what helps them win, on and off the field. And that’s one of the things that I always pride myself on, is my mindset for me to be an undrafted, NFL free agent coming into the league and to be playing for seven years going on to my eighth year. It’s all been mindset.

Dan Kuschell 8:38

It’s amazing. Like there again, there’s so much and we don’t have time to go into all of it. But man, there’s just, I mean, guys, that’s three times the lifespan of the normal average NFL player and as an undrafted, free agent. It’s an anomaly. Like it’s like, again, go You guys can do your own research on that. So. So Bennie, I want to ask you, speaking of what you brought up about mindset, right? You’ve been around you’re you’re obviously an anomaly of success with your mind is, which is why you’re doing what you’re doing. And you’ve been around those four quarterbacks, who, you know, depending on who you ask, are considered goats in their own right, right. Either in their organization or even potentially in the NFL. For you, and maybe them if you’ve ever seen it, you know, for all of us doubt can creep in at times. Right? We have good days, we have bad days. Like what would you say to somebody where doubt is creeping in their mind about like, whether it’s their performance, or their ability to continue to compete, like, what do you like? How do you manage that? How do you navigate that sometimes that voice a doubt that can creep in?

Bennie Fowler 9:45

Well, one of the things that in one of the best ways that you can work with doubt is to acknowledge the fact that it’s there. And to thank that part of you, that part of you is trying to help you stay safe. You know, that’s it’s always is going to be like that, you know, especially since the evolution of man, you know, it’s fight or flight response, a response in terms of the brain. And I think that’s one of the most important things is that your brain is trying to protect you, because it’s perceiving that there’s danger around. So understanding that part of the brain and understanding your mind. And then understanding the fact that if you’re preparing every single day, then you’ll be just fine. But we there are no perfect humans, there are no, there’s I’ve never, I’ve never seen the perfect football game. And we’ve never seen anybody with the perfect life. So let’s understand that and let’s compete against ourselves, and try to be the best version of ourselves every single day. I think comparison is the thief of joy. And I’m gonna repeat that comparison is the thief of joy, especially today’s world, we have Instagram, there’s so many things, and we’re always comparing ourselves to somebody else. But what is your real definition of success? That will help you eliminate some of the doubt what is it really success really looks like to you? And what do you really want out of the game of football out of the game of life, is what I would say in terms of doubt. But doubts always going to be there. You think about a guy like Kobe Bryant? Of course, there’s going to be fear. But how can you reframe that and to say that, that means you’re doing something significant and exciting, you’re getting ready to do something really big, you’re playing in a football game, or you’re in a business meeting, or you’re going to school, you’re asking that girl out, or that guy out whatever it may be, you’re doing something exciting. So that’s, that’s, that’s a good thing. It’s it’s okay to have a little bit of doubt there. And that’s what it can also drive you to be the best.

Comparison is the thief of joy. - Bennie Fowler Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 11:48

So what do you see in it? And this could be you or you see in these other super performers, how they channel it, like they acknowledge it, embrace it, it’s part of life. But then how do you how do you channel or how have you either you will use you as an example. What have you perceived and watching being around some of the most successful men in the world? dealing with it? Yeah, it

Bennie Fowler 12:13

comes down to preparation. And that is one of the best ways you can eliminate like I said, there’s always going to be some doubt. Because you know, there’s always some unknowns going into a game going into, you know, just the next day of life, but are you prepared? So if I think about that, that’s one of the best things I learned about playing with Peyton, you had to be prepared. I was nervous. I played with Peyton for two years, and I was nervous every single day. Because you just never knew what kind of questions you were going to get in the meeting room. And the way in when I’m talking about preparation, I’m talking about this, I’ll give you a perfect example. So the third string quarterback on any team that played Peyton plays on has to watch the TV copy of the game on Monday, after our game, to see what signals and code words were said on the TV copy so that we could be prepared and change those signals and code words for the next game. That’s the type of preparation. We had code words for code words, but it’s being prepared in that way. He might show you a play. So I played with Peyton in 2015. He showed us some clips from 2010, 2008, against certain defensive coordinators, like hey, we might get this Blitz, you know, just be prepared. And this is this is the answer that we’ll get. This guy did this to me 7, 6, 7 years ago, so we got to be prepared for it. Drew Brees the same way, we’re getting ready for a game on Sunday. On Saturday after our walkthrough, everybody clears out, he’s in the indoor by himself. He starts at the one yard line and goes to the opposite one. And he goes through every single play formation down in distance situations. That’s just what that’s what that’s what being prepared is. So it eliminates some of that doubt.

Dan Kuschell 14:00

That’s so amazing, and guys, as you’re listening right now, or watching right now, I hope you’re pulling some of this out not only for, you know, on the field, but off the field. It’s so critically important preparation and anything, especially off the field in business and relationships in life, all of it, it pays dividends.

Bennie Fowler 14:19

I want to speak to that as well. Then it’s you know, even in as we’re talking about not even football, just life. Me preparing for myself life after football. Football is only a small part of my life. But you know, me reaching out to you asking you questions about how you developed your business and anything that I can take from you. And how can I set myself up for life after football so I’m not searching for something else to fill the void. When opportunity knocks it’s too late to prepare. So you have to be ready right now and that’s why I’m getting ready right now. Why would I not lean on somebody who’s already done what I want to do?

When opportunity knocks, it’s too late to prepare. So you have to be ready right now. - Bennie Fowler Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 14:57

Dig a well before you’re thirsty right now

Bennie Fowler 14:59

Yes, absolutely.

Dan Kuschell 15:00

Now, you know, Bennie, and I mean this respectfully, right? As I looked up and research your background, you know, you’re not the biggest tallest guy in the in the NFL receiver. You’re not the fastest guy. In fact, it seems that they’ve misquoted your your 40 times in several different places, right? And you’ve been in the NFL seven, seven years. And now you got these young bucks coming in, who, they might be bigger, they might be faster, right? They might be six foot five, strapped, right running four twos God help us all, like how we can run like this. These days. It’s crazy to me, like in the 80s, where I came from, I’m in my 50s. Now, you are really fast if you were running like 449, 452 right now, and maybe it was faster, but they just didn’t have clocks fast enough to time the fastest guys. It’s crazy. Again, coming back to this thing about mindset. How do you keep yourself in a peak state to perform when there is so much competition of guys that are bigger, faster, stronger, potentially, than you?

Bennie Fowler 16:15

Yeah, it’s what am I focused on? What What am I focused on? There’s something that I go into every off season that that says I need to focus on this. And at the end of the day, the reason why I’m in the league is because I’m a Pro’s Pro, I show up on time, I do my job, and I don’t worry about anybody else, but doing my job. And that’s the most important thing. You know, there are guys who are faster, stronger. I’ve beaten out first round picks, second round picks, it doesn’t matter. Because at the end of the day, it’s about what you have up here. And how you How can you persevere? How can you be consistent day in and day out? The NFL is all about consistency. Life is all about consistency, can you show up every single day? Are you just a flash in the pan? Okay, you make a good play here. But then you’re late to a meeting, you don’t show up. You don’t treat your teammates the right way. It’s so many different things that come in to place especially when you are an investment in the NFL, you are an investment they’re investing in you. So there is no time for you to show up late or not do your job not do your homework not study. And that’s why I’ve gotten the respect that I have around the NFL because the quarterbacks who can vouch for me are four of the best. And I’ve gotten in gained the trust of those people on and off the field. That’s what it comes down to in life, in business, in school in relationships. Can you trust the other person to do what they said they were gonna do?

The NFL is all about consistency. Life is all about consistency. Can you show up every single day? - Bennie Fowler Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 17:46

That’s so good. Speak to speak to the importance of relationships, Bennie, you just brought up a great example, you’ve got four of the best in the world ever in the history of the world of the NFL vouching for you. That comes with relationship capital, you can take away our money you can take away, you know, our physical material stuff. But man relationship capital may be the most important capital ever speak to how it’s played a role for you?

Bennie Fowler 18:12

Yes, like you said, relationship capital is the most important thing you can have. And if I think about business, obviously, you understand business and people buy from people, people work with people at the end of the day. They don’t work with stats. I mean, you see, you see a guy like Tom Brady, and you see people want to run through a wall for him. It’s because of the relationships that he’s developed with people. What that’s what Peyton did with me. The first day I walked into that facility, I was nervous, so nervous, I had my headphones on I’m trying to act like I’m busy putting things away in my locker and he comes up and says, Hey, my name is Peyton. Nice to meet you. Glad to have you on the team. Right then and there. I wanted to run through a wall for him because he introduced himself Of course, I knew who he was. But that’s how important it is. He knows everybody in the building by their first name. And I’m not talking about players in general managers. I’m talking about the people in the kitchen, the people who clean the bathrooms and the people who take care of the field. That’s the people he has lunch with. Because they have a an important role on making this team successful as well. But it’s it like you said it’s all about relationships. It’s all about treating people the right way. And you know, that’s something that I pride myself on is that when people come to my house and they see the jerseys on the wall from Peyton, from Drew, from Ely. The messages are what I want people to see, and how they talked about me as a person and as a teammate, but like you said relationship capital. That’s capital that’s always going to be there regardless of money regardless of fame. I can call Peyton right now I can shoot him email right now. He’s not might necessarily do everything I asked response Do you care because He cares. And I think that’s super important. That’s one of the reason why I got a chance to play with Tom Brady, Bill Belichick told me, he signed me because he taught, he called Peyton and asked me asked him what type of guy I was. And that’s the reason why they signed me. So relationships go a long way.

Dan Kuschell 20:16

A long way, man, I hope as you’re listening to this, and if you’re not a part of our organization, and you’re hearing this or seeing this somewhere else, men or women, what can you learn from what Bennie just shared with you? Right? You know, there’s one thing in like, skill sets and abilities, and whatever it is you do, it could be business, it could be NFL could be any sport could be any activity, there’s abilities, like, you know, can you run, can you catch? Can you throw, can you blah, blah, blah, whatever it is, can you sell, can you you lead a team, blah, blah, blah, that’s business stuff, right? There’s two abilities that I want you to tune in on that Bennie just hit on, that are often overlooked, often not talked about, but two of the most important abilities in the world. Availability, and reliability. And what I just heard Bennie just described to you was the importance of those two skill sets. If you can just show up on time, be a good good dude be a good gal, do what you say you’re going to do. Put in the prep time, you’ll go far in life, you might go three times as far as the first round draft pick, who didn’t have the availability or reliability. And in six months, they’re no longer in the league. They’re no longer in that role. Why to simple little thing, I hope you I hope you’re really paying close attention to what Bennie, yeah, there’s so much Bennie I want to get to, and I want to have our young men ask their questions of you here in just a few minutes. I want to open it up. Here’s where you are now, like you, you’ve got this amazing success track record. Can you remember back to when you were a kid playing new sports? Maybe you were 12, 13 years old? So if you can think back to that, like what are some of the things you learned back then that helped build this foundation that you show up, you’re prepared you do the work, you’re reliable, you’re available, you are a gym rats, essentially, in your own way on the field, to consume and contribute and build relationship capital? What were some of those memorable experiences you had like as your as a kid that you now realize, oh, that laid a foundation for me?

Bennie Fowler 22:26

Yeah, I would say the first memory that comes to mind right now is, you know, being eight years old, playing basketball at the YMCA, my dad started a basketball team for my brother and I, and a group of us it’s about 12 or 13 kids that you know, where the core foundation of our AAU team, which we call the power stroke. And I remember my dad talking about mental, physical, spiritual, those are the three foundations, values that we had growing up. And I think to this day, that’s three of the most important things that I always have to work on. That’s, that’s always a check at the end of the season, going into the next season, okay, where’s my mental health at, where’s my mental fitness at? Where’s my physical fitness? Where’s my spiritual fitness? If all three of those aren’t aligned, I’m good with whatever result. I can really, I can control all of that, and taking care of that every single day. Start, the first thing I do. And the last thing I do is I wake up and I pray, I thank God for the abilities that I have. And I’m very thankful meditation, quick meditation, five to 10 minutes, everybody thinks you have to do an hour, but you have to get grounded. And then take care of my my physical health, you know, I work out at 7:30 every single day. That’s, that’s my routine. At right now, as an entrepreneur, that’s the way I have to have my day set up, because I’m coaching clients in the afternoon. But that’s how that’s my first early childhood memory. And then, you know, just as I grew up, I was more talented than a lot of the people. So I didn’t, I didn’t have the work ethic that I had, until I got humbled until I went to college. So I could get away with things. I want to be an NBA basketball player. And I truly believe that if I want if I stayed in the gym, how I should have with my athletic ability, I could have made it to the NBA. But I didn’t have the work ethic for to actually go after the passion sport that I had. And my mom actually helped me navigate and understand that I could use my speed on the football field. So I think listening, listen to your parents, they have a unique perspective. They have a lot more life, then, you know, as kids, so I’m still listening to my parents, my mom and dad pointed things to me all the time, still to this day. But I think, you know, really having that core foundation mental, physical, spiritual. That’s something my dad talked to me about and That’s something that I’m always going to carry with me. But you know, when I was growing up, sports was a lot of fun. I played three sports, basketball, football, and I ran track. And I love to compete. And you know, how do you how are you competing, you should be competing all the time, and you should be outside all the time. Especially if you love sports, and just staying active, like sports really teaches you about life, getting up every single day going after what you really want, going through the ups and downs, that’s life. Not every day is going to be a good day. Some days are better than others, what can you bring to the next day?

Dan Kuschell 25:37

So speaking of that, I know you know, in your either junior or senior year, I believe of high school, and then your freshman year of college, you had some injuries you had to deal with. Right? Talk about, you know, how you navigated like dealing, you know, I don’t know if you would have at that time, consider like one of the biggest failures, or I don’t know what mistake is the right word. But dealing with that low call it you know, what you just talked about ups and downs, right. And dealing with injuries can be a huge blow, especially for a performer and athlete. Right? speak to that demand. Again, back to the mental side, the winning side of you know, it’s easy to stop. It’s easy to be a sunny day person when everything’s great. But when it’s terrible, and you have a serious injury, and it takes X amount of time to return and there are times when you’re in the middle of it going, am I ever going to get better from this thing, like whatever it is, right? You just do the work, you grind through it, it hurts still, like, right, it can still hurt. You’re just getting yourself through it. So speak to that a little bit dealing with failure, or injuries. And then, you know, navigating it to still perform at a high level.

Bennie Fowler 26:47

Yeah, so I think dealing with injuries, I had to deal with injuries. My junior in high school, I broke my collarbone first ever bone on broke. And then when I got to Michigan State, I broke my right foot, and my true freshman year, and then my junior year, I broke the same bone in my left foot. The way that I got through those times was actually thinking about what is going to what what is it going to be like, when I am healthy would be like when I am healthy. But I can’t let this define me. I cannot leave my career not trying, not getting on the field, not putting in the work because it’s just I felt it would have been talent wasted if I didn’t go out there and try. So you know, that’s what I did. I leaned on motivational videos. I’m a big, big, big, big Kobe Bryant fan. You know, the late great Kobe Bryant. And it was all about mindset. I saw him go through things, you know, personally, mentally, and you just saw the way that he responded to everything. And it was just like, I can’t give up. And then also my brother, who is my hero and who I dedicated my book to, my brother tore his ACL three times before he graduated high school, still got a scholarship to Central Michigan, where he broke all the basketball records, led them to a match championship and played professionally overseas for two years. So I could never give up. My brother tore his ACL when he was 11.

Dan Kuschell 28:19


Bennie Fowler 28:20

So that, you know, watching him go through that. We had to lean on the people who are closest to us. There are a lot of inspiring stories out there that can help us and push us forward. And when I think about any of the things that I’ve gone through, okay, yes, I’m going through it right now. You got that 24 hours. All right, so and then what’s the plan? What do I really want out of this rehab? Or what do I really want in this life? And how can I make this meaningful, and then you find different passions when you’re injured? You find, you can find different things, you can discover yourself even more, okay, right now I’m injured. So what’s the other part of my life that I can maximize right here and right now?

Dan Kuschell 29:02

Amazing. Now speaking, we Oh, we’ve talked about success. We’ve talked about failure. We’ve talked about mindset, when there’s so much more. I wish we had 24 hours to spend together because this would be a fun. It may not be that fun for you. But it certainly be fun for a kid like me, that’s for sure. At the same time, I really want to make this fun for these young men who’ve been dedicated, you know, practice, putting in the effort putting in the work, and I asked them to prepare a couple questions for you. Right. And guys, I want to open it up right now for you to ask your question. Xzavier, I’d love you to open up your mic and ask Bennie the question you had and then guys be ready because I’m going to you know, as he answers these, I’m going to have you rapid fire and Bennie, we will just take as much time as we can possible, probably another maybe 10 minutes ish out of respect to Bennie’s time. And and wrap this up. So Xzavier. You ready? All right. They say opportunities are now Ever last they just go to someone else who’s ready. So are you up for it?

Bennie Fowler 30:05

Am I up for it?

Dan Kuschell 30:06

No, I Xzavier I’m calling for Xzavier, maybe or Yeah. Can you type your question and turn your mic on?

Xzavier 30:14

So my question was, who is your favorite NFL player growing up?

Bennie Fowler 30:20

My favorite NFL player. When I was growing up, I was a big Barry Sanders fan. So I’m from Detroit. I love Barry Sanders. Incredible running back one of the best running backs of all time. Super shifty. I used to watch his highlight tape all the time, all the time. But I like I said, you know, when I was growing up, I was a basketball guy, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant. Those are the guys I wanted to be like, you know, my mom actually took me out when I was in sixth grade to LA to to a Lakers game. That’s how much I loved Kobe. So I wanted to be a basketball player. But you know, Barry Sanders and Randy Moss. Those are my guys.

Dan Kuschell 30:54

That’s amazing. That’s amazing. All right. Kyler. You’re next ask your question. Then, we got David was right behind on the bubble.

Kyler 31:00

What made you want to go for the NFL.

Bennie Fowler 31:07

What made me want to go for the NFL, I always wanted to be a professional athlete. I was when I was younger, I wanted to be famous. I wanted to be a professional athlete. I wanted to make money playing sports. And then I also wanted to play in front of a lot of people. That’s what made me want to go through the for the NFL. And you know, when I was getting recruited by Michigan State, while I walked in the Spartan Stadium, Coach D took me in a Spartan Stadium, it was 80,000 seats in there. And I looked up and I was like, this is where I have to be. I have to I have to play here.

Dan Kuschell 31:39

That’s awesome. That’s awesome. David Larson, you’re up.

David 31:43

So I have two questions, actually. The first one is, how and when you start training for the next season?

Bennie Fowler 31:52

I started training the day after the season’s over now when I say that I’m not going into football things but I never, I never stopped working out. There are so many different ways to work out. There’s yoga, there’s Pilates. But I take a load off in terms of you know, heavy lifting, I’m not doing any cutting, I don’t do any cutting until so as the season ends in January, if we don’t make the playoffs, I won’t do any cutting or put on any cleats until, you know around this time until around April. But you know, I never stopped working out but I do a lot of push ups, sit ups runs, always constantly working out and staying in shape. This is that’s what you have to do in life. It’s not just about Alright, you know, when you’re done playing, you stop working out. You see athletes do that. But what do you want your overall physical health to be year round, and, you know, I’ll ever stop working out.

David 32:48

The other one is what is the typical week look like during the season?

Bennie Fowler 32:55

During the season. So a typical week, Wednesday in the NFL is our monday so Wednesday we’re in the meat we’re in the building, you probably in the building around 7am probably get a little breakfast from seven to 730. I might look over the script. In terms of what plays we’re installing from 730 to eight, we’ll have our first meeting at eight o’clock team meeting from eight to a 10. And then from 815 to nine. We’re probably in a special teams meeting going over the four phases from nine to 11. is offensive meetings and defensive meetings all separately. 11 to 1130 were in position meetings 30 minute break, then we get to practice field from 12 to two and then we’ll have a little bit of lunch, you know, from two to 245 and then around 245 to 315 Yeah, especially teams meetings and then I think it’d be like yeah, 315 Yes, 315. So 345 to about 430 then offensive meetings where we’re watching the film from the practice and that’s a that’s a that’s a Wednesday and a Thursday. That’s what that looks like then we have fast Friday you come in the building, around eight o’clock meeting start meetings are super short. We’re on the field that right 930 practices about 45 minutes, then we’re done for the day, Saturday is a situational walkthrough, walking through all the situations in our first 15 plays of the game. And you know, that’s about an hour, hour and a half. Meet at the hotel, walk through again. And then we go out there play on Sundays Monday, come in, review the film, watch the film, get a lift in get some conditioning in and then Tuesday’s is completely off but you’re probably you know getting ready for the next game in terms of you know, just getting ahead and watching some some film on the next opponent.

Dan Kuschell 34:52

That’s awesome. That’s awesome. Now guys, as you’re listening or watching right now, you know, you know obviously this is a career Right that Bennie is in. And this is a full time like, this is a man’s job, right? It could be a woman’s job, you know, in its own way and a different career path, like different, you know, like WNBA, you know, professional softball, that sort of thing as in athletics, right? It’s not some part time gig. It’s like full time, right? So even though you guys are students, what could you apply from what Bennie is talking about for you? Right, you guys have offseasons you have off days. You know, there’s an old saying that you can tell most champions in life by what they do when no one else is watching. And this is probably again, coming back to those two abilities, availability, right and reliability. What Bennie is probably built in his DNA, it’s just now automatic is a lot of reliability and availability, because he’s just consistent over and over and over again, he does the work to him, it’s probably not even in I don’t want to put words in his mouth, because I can just I can feel the joy from him. It’s not a job for him. It’s still a game for although he realizes it’s a business. And he’s setting the stage for life after and off the field. He’s looking at it like this still applies to my life, I wouldn’t be doing this anyway. Right. So guys, what could you take out of this as young men is young students, you know, and if you’re not a student, again, if you’re finding this somehow, someway, somewhere else, like what could you take out of what Bennie just shared about the commitment to excellence, the commitment to be a winner, the commitment of mindset? So I think Luis, you had a question.

Luis 36:42

Yeah, my question was, like, who was inspired you to play the sport? Like? Yes, my question was quite easy to play the sport, would you? Who’d you learn the sport from or what inspired you to play?

Bennie Fowler 37:01

I would say, I just love sports. Growing up, my dad took me to Detroit Lions games all the time, Detroit Pistons games all the time. And, you know, they put me in sports. As you know, when I was young, I didn’t know what sport I really wanted to play professionally, why should I do I know, I want to play basketball professionally. But my inspiration came from just watching the games on TV, I can remember watching the NBA Finals games. And then as I got older and older, you know, my dad would take us to playoff games. And I was able to go to so many different sporting events. And you know, that just when you’re around it, you immerse yourself in it, you watch it, you study it, that’s exactly what you become. That’s what you want to be. That’s where I got inspired. And then I stopped playing football in the fifth grade, and then I didn’t pick it back up till I was a junior in high school, and my mom inspired me to go back out to play football, and use my talents elsewhere. So I would say it started with my family, but also just watching it on TV. And seeing, you know, the guys that I want it to be like and seeing myself in them.

Dan Kuschell 38:09

That’s awesome. That’s awesome. So much truth in there guys. So much truth. And yet that whole time you did play some sports, you did still compete, right? Basketball, obviously, was probably the biggest thing.

Bennie Fowler 38:23

Yeah, at all times, I was always competing, you know, my brother and I, you know, still compete to this day. But you know, we would play basketball in the house, you know, fake basketball all day, or, you know, video games, you know, whatever, whatever it is, you can compete in so many different things. Whether it was debate, or, you know, even with grades, we were competing, it was just like who can do better at this, you know, this competition. That’s what life is all about is you know, measuring up and seeing how you measure up against the best and then you go back to the lab and you and then you figure out how you can do it even better. It doesn’t matter in what area of life it is. We can always constantly improve.

Dan Kuschell 39:02

Get in the lab guys, get in the lab. It’s your own lab called life, the lab of life. Right. Eli? You’re up.

Eli 39:14

I was gonna ask him, like, how you felt when you heard Drew Brees was retiring.

Bennie Fowler 39:23

I was I felt I was happy for him. You know, he’s had an incredible career. He said so many different records, one of the most accurate QBs of all time I was I was very happy for him in just who he is as a person. And him, you know, just going out on his own terms, but the fact that he could play in the NFL for 20 years, I think it’s incredible. But I when he retired, I was like, I’m blessed that I got to catch passes and see him on a day in and day out basis and the way he worked and who he was as a person, and how he helped me in terms of my career. So I thought it was awesome and I’m glad that I got to know him and be a part of his life and he was a part of mine.

Dan Kuschell 40:07

Awesome Eziah do you have a question? And then we got Marcus right behind?

Eziah 40:14

Yeah, I was gonna ask, what did you learn from most?

Bennie Fowler 40:19

In terms of what?

Eziah 40:22

Like, like anything like football in like life and stuff.

Bennie Fowler 40:27

I’m always constantly learning. I’m learning every single day you can never know enough. So I’m always constantly learning the people that I’ve learned from the most in my life have been my parents, my my brother, I learned a lot from my brother. Even though I’m the oldest of four. I learned from everybody I learned from my younger sisters. Draymond Green is one of my very, very best friends. He’s like a brother to me. And I learned from him constantly. I’ve learned from everybody I’ve learned from you know, guys, like Odell say, Kwan, Peyton, Eli, Tom Brady, Bill Belichick. Klay Thompson, you know, these are people who, you know, I’ve gotten a chance to spend a lot of time with and just understand how they think and you know, people that I’ve gotten a chance to really be around. So I’m always constantly learning. In the short time that I’ve known Dan, and the couple weeks, I’ve already learned a lot in just, you know, going through your your coach’s webinar, in terms of who he is, as a businessman. And as and as a man, I’ve, I’ve already learned a lot from him in terms of, I have three pages of notes in just an hour and a half video that he shared with me. So I’m learning every something every single day, the biggest room in the world is room for improvement. That’s something that I learned when I was you guys page, the biggest room in the world is room for improvement never stopped learning.

The biggest room in the world is room for improvement. Never stop learning. - Bennie Fowler Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 41:55

That’s powerful. Luis, great question. Bennie. That’s, that’s amazing. And guys, you know, some of you may not find school like a natural place to learn. And by the way, that’s normal for certain types of people, right? school doesn’t have to be the only way or only place you learn, I hope you pick that up from what Bennie just shared. So in fact, if you want to add anything, maybe there’s someone here watching or listening, Bennie, that maybe they go on, I don’t really connect with school that much, or whatever speak to the importance of learning, just overall and being that committed lifelong learner, and how you would recommend taking the pursuit of growth and learning and challenging yourself every day.

Bennie Fowler 42:37

Yeah, I would think that, you know, you have to really find out what your rich really passionate about. And like you said, school is not always for everything, at least the subjects that they’re teaching. Well, what are the subjects that do stand out to you in life? And how can you learn the most? What books can you get? What audio books can you get during the pandemic? I’ve always wanted to be a singer. And I wanted to learn how to sing. So I took singing lessons during the pandemic virtually for two months, every single week, twice a week, only for for 30 minute lessons, because I didn’t want to overdo it and just power myself and make myself overwhelmed. But something singing, learning how to sing is something that I’ve always wanted to learn how to do so why would I not actually go get the lessons and try to do it now? I’m not a great thing. You’re still but I’m, I’m improving. And that’s what life is all about? Where Where do you want to improve in your life? And then that’s where you want to learn? How can you research Google is the most incredible thing. Yes, that we have. It has all the answers in terms of what we all want as people so don’t be afraid to use that that phone. Google’s right there for you. What do you want to learn about? What there’s videos, there’s books, there’s audio books, there’s podcasts, learning can be done in so many different ways.

Dan Kuschell 43:56

And make it fun for yourself, guys make it fun, right? You have the ability to control that but you know, truly, learners are the high earners and leaders are learners. That’s the truth. So ideally, you will fall in love with learning and find the way to learn that serves you best, right and there are you there’s all kinds of ways like Bennie just shared to be able to do that Marcus your question as we wrap this up.

Marcus 44:26

What made you choose the position you chose?

Bennie Fowler 44:31

It’s where all the fame is. Now I chose receiver because I wanted to always be a running back. And then I got a little bit taller. And as I as I was getting recruited, I was getting recruited as a receiver. But also, you know, I wasn’t a guy I was still a basketball player at heart so I didn’t want to get hit that much. So I chose receiver. And you know, receivers always get the ball. There’s always a chance to get the ball and there’s a lot of running involved and I use I like to use my speed and that’s, that’s what I chose. And I chose that also because Randy Moss guys like Randy Moss, Terrell Owens, DeSean Jackson, those are receivers that, you know, when I was in middle school in high school that I was looking up to, and they played the receiver position, I want to use my speed and run past people. And that’s why I chose receiver.

Dan Kuschell 45:21

Amazing. Anybody else have a question for Bennie? Alright, Bennie, as we wrap this up, what are 1 to 3 action steps you would hope someone watching this or or young people that are with us right now? are here or someone that might see this in four years, or now some way somehow and something? What would be 123 action steps you hope someone would take from our time together today?

Bennie Fowler 45:50

I would like for people to take some action steps. that’s a that’s a great question. I think number one is really just hone in what’s important to you. What is really important to you, and asking yourself that every single day. And I think you know, one of the things that you pointed out that I’ve watched before is, what are you thankful for? Hmm. We take a lot of things for granted as people, so what are you thankful for? And then I would The third thing I would want people to do and ask themselves is every single day if they’re facing tough decisions, or you know, they want more in life, you know, my mom always brought this up. Are you playing to win? Are you playing not to lose in life, in terms of business, in terms of sports, in terms of relationship capital, in terms of school? Ask yourself, am I playing to win right here? am I playing not to lose? Are you playing it safe? Are you really going for what you really want? And then go out there and get it and enjoy what you’re doing? enjoy what you’re doing? enjoy what you’re doing? Have fun. Surround yourself with the right people.

Ask yourself: am I playing to win right here, or am I playing not to lose? Are you playing it safe, or are you going for what you really want. Then go out there and get it. - Bennie Fowler Click To Tweet

Dan Kuschell 47:11

All right, we’re up to five right now. You got any you got a few more? No, I’m kidding. So guys, as you’re listening or watching right now identify what’s important to you. What are you thankful for? You’re facing decisions, are you playing to win or not to lose? Or another way is? Are you playing it safe or playing to do your best? Are you, find a way to enjoy what you’re doing and surround yourself with other people. I mean, we’ve covered so much. I’ve literally got two and a half pages of notes just from our 40 minute conversation here, guys, I hope that you’ve gotten a ton of value from this interview, these questions. As you guys know, my focus for you is to create memorable experiences for many of you who are not available almost anywhere in the world. And I’m grateful for Keith, who I was able to connect with his bit really good friends with Bennie who got us connected and say you guys should chat. And we’ve been developing a relationship here to help each other. And when I asked I said Hey, would you mind sharing some time with our young athletes? And he was like, heck yeah, in a heartbeat. So guys, I hope all of you will take action with this. take it to heart doesn’t matter where you’ve been in matters where you want to go. Today, this moment is in the past. It’s what you do from here and I hope that you’ll take these five steps I hope you’ll take what Bennie shared with you and I hope you’re inspired. And then now you got to do something with it. Right It’s easy to talk it’s harder to lead and take action but action precedes the miracle

Bennie Fowler 48:44

If you guys need any me if you guys need anything Dan obviously you know you can reach out to me but if any of the kids want to talk personally one on one, you know you guys can feel free and I you know I have a lot of experience to share. And you know, I do that I want you guys to enjoy where you guys are at in terms of your age right now. There are some I wish I could go back in middle school and no bills and certain things but at the same time you guys are growing into great young men or if there are some young women watching you guys are growing into great people and surround yourselves and really learn and listen to what Dan is talking about. And also your parents or your guardians listen to what they are talking to talking about and telling you.

Dan Kuschell 49:30

Absolutely. So there you have it. Guys, it’s been amazing. Glad you’re here Bennie, so incredibly grateful you spend the 45 minutes I owe you on this brother. I do. And I and I and I look forward to it. I look forward to many conversations together as we help each other over the year. So guys take action. And if you’re picking this up, you’re on a replay somewhere whatever seize the day take action with what Bennie just shared with you. You don’t have to be in middle school or high school or college or even play any sports for any of this to apply it all applies to success in life does. So I encourage you seize the day. Take action. We’ll see you soon. Thanks, guys. Have a great night. Thanks for listening to this episode of growthtofreedom.com. Are you struggling to get a steady flow of new clients every day, or maybe hit a plateau or hit a wall and growing your business? Let’s help you solve this problem today. Let’s review your business and have a conversation. You can do that for free today at breakthroughstrategycall.com, that’s breakthroughstrategycall.com. In addition, if you’re looking for a simple way to implement some of what we’ve been talking about in today’s episode, I want to encourage you to get our free small business toolkit. You get that at activate.breakthrough3x.com, that’s activate.breakthrough3x.com. If you’d like access to the special resources and all the show notes for this special episode. Make sure to visit growthtofreedom.com.

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