Success Podcast Post

Mastering Yourself with Wylie McGraw

George Grombacher January 27, 2023

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Mastering Yourself with Wylie McGraw

LifeBlood: We talked about mastering yourself, how stress impacts all of us, becoming your most powerful version, and becoming elite, with Wylie McGraw, former star baseball player, competitive bull rider, combat veteran, coach, and podcaster.

Listen to learn why there’s value in suffering, but not in trying to outrun it!

You can learn more about Wylie at, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn.

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Our Guests

George Grombacher

Wylie McGraw

Episode Transcript

Well, this is George G. And the time is right welcome today’s guest strong and powerful Wiley McGraw Wiley. Are you ready to do this? I’m ready, George. All right, let’s go. Wiley is former star pitcher. He’s a competitive bowl writer, a three time combat veteran. Through his experiences, he discovered he, his crazy superpower of being able to expose blind spots, erupt and eradicate stress, fully unleash the untapped potential of high achievers while he tell us about your personal lives more about your work and why you do what you do. My personal life okay. Well, so first, I’m the founder of radical performance acceleration. George, last 14 years I’ve been behind the scenes, we’re doing some really life altering and radical work with high achievers from all walks of life, different industries, from Wall Street to Hollywood, professional sports. So you know, Silicon Valley in between anything and everything. And because it’s non industry specific type of work that I do. But yeah, going back on my life, I was an athlete, grew up in a very competitive household with two other brothers and a father who was a semi pro ballplayer. It was nothing for me to be walking by people like Bo Jackson and Rod Carew, and I met Mickey Mantle when I was nine. So I was very motivated and driven at a young age to learn the discipline of focus and being you know, you know, present and being able to compete at a very high level, which was exciting, until it got to the point where I started to recognize the differences in stress and how stress were affecting my performance as a young athlete.

Unknown Speaker 1:42
God got away from all of the I would say the outside forces that were causing me to have this inner battle with myself about what it is that I really wanted to be doing as I got older. And that’s what bull riding became the the seductive world to pull me away from something I got to choose. So for me, Georgia is like, I got to take away the the lack of option that my father gave me growing up in that sports world, chose something on my own, that really allowed me to meet this version of myself, I’d been dying to meet, you know, as the star pitcher, being pressured by the pros, groomed by the California Angels, pitching staff and being told that if I wasn’t perfect, and if I didn’t focus only on this, then I was good enough. So that bull riding world was very seductive to me. And it forced me to, to learn how to yield to the fear of the unknown, learn how to yield to who I really was become present, in every single moment, no matter how many times I got in the back of that wild animal, and just learn how to be in tune with my intuition and my mindset, my emotions, and really learn how to become in those chaotic moments, even though they’re short rides. And eventually, I got tired of that one and more and found the military, several 101st Airborne Division, as a combat infantry leader, did three tours overseas. And I really discovered that there was a war of this gift that I’ve been carrying around my entire life that I didn’t recognize as at a young age, my ability to make people exposed and feel, the stress that they carry rattle within them, is something I just kind of came into the world with. And at this point, you know, it’s like, I’ve been living my life from a place of staying completely focused on mastering myself first, having resources around me that always kept me and I still do to this day, keep me at the top of my game as much as possible. I’m human, I have stresses that I have frustrations, and that sometimes I have, you know, these irritations because it’s life and life throws a lot of different curveballs at you. But it’s those life experiences that got me to a place where, you know, I’m happily married, I’ve got an amazing pop, I get to live where I want to live, I get to run this amazing business doing this really different type of work with some very prominent people, they call on me because I have an ability to truly push them past limitations in a way no other coach or consultant ever has before. And I find that to be very rewarding where now you know, I get the skydive as a hobby, I get

Unknown Speaker 3:58
it but really, the work that I do is very intense, very life altering for me as well. I take on maybe two to three people per year. Intimate clients of mine is very high level and very relationship oriented. So at this point, the last 14 years, I’ve just been going and blowing at it because it is my life’s mission. It’s not just the business that I run it’s purpose that I was built to do. And that’s why the eruption and eradication of stress is kind of a fabric of who I am and it’s not a thing that I do or something I studied from someone else. And death right now at this point. That’s all I’m doing is I’m gonna continue to do as we move into the new year. Nice. So how, when when you jump out of an airplane, how long are you falling through the air?

Unknown Speaker 4:44
It depends on body orientation. I think the average person thinks you’re skydiving I think belly to Earth you know you’re in your belly falling to the earth. wait about a minute that is usually the average skydive, but you know you’ve become an athlete in the sport and you get your license you start jumping with your friends. You start learning different by

Unknown Speaker 5:00
orientations you can be doing from a place of flying on your head head down towards the the earth feet towards the earth on different types of angles, the way in which you pitch your body into the wind and learn how to fly like a bird. So it can go anywhere from 30 to 55 seconds, depending on the speeds that we hit. Sometimes we’ll hit speeds of 200 plus miles an hour flying around the sky. So very short skydives, when you’re going that fast, but at the end of the day, you still get like a nice two to three minute parachute ride. Once you you know, you stopped the skydive down to the earth before you land. So it’s nice, I don’t doubt that for a second. In terms of when you are jumping out of airplanes to go and, and fight the enemy. That’s also a pretty abbreviated truncated amount of time.

Unknown Speaker 5:43
It’s, well in the military, just literal jumping out of airplanes is a lot much different than we’d say than skydiving, obviously. But for people that don’t really understand the differences, it’s you know, your jump from military aircraft, you’re getting 1500 feet, you know, 1200 feet, you’re doing 800 foot combat jumps and I didn’t get I didn’t have I didn’t get to do those combat jumps. But you know, people like my brother who was a special operations, he didn’t combat jumps like that all the time. So yeah, it’s it’s static line, you’re getting thrown out of an aircraft for seconds per round parachute opens up and you’re falling 14 feet per second, and you basically hit the ground, ready to run, skydiving is like the place we need to go play, you know, relax, and I’ll be shooting at us. So it’s a different.

Unknown Speaker 6:24
So this, this short bout of absolute intensity, you get on the back of a massive ball, and you’re going to try to ride the thing for a handful of seconds, hopefully, seven, eight seconds, but I from my understanding that that’s a really long time. And you train

Unknown Speaker 6:43
and prepare for months at a time for this really, really brief a amount of, of performance strikes me that, that that is just such a wonderful metaphor for a lifetime,

Unknown Speaker 6:59
really compacted. It is it’s an amazing metaphor. And I think it gives us

Unknown Speaker 7:06
I think a moment of pause to really recognize that the preparation and your ability to really push yourself and train and, and live a life where that’s that’s a habit of yours daily having the mental discipline to just take action, you know, because you’re not always gonna have the motivation. I was not always motivated to play baseball, even though that’s that was my primary sport, I was not always motivated to be more right or I was not always motivated to be a soldier. But it’s not the motivation that matters. What matters is your preparation and training and you’re building yourself up and you’re really learning more about yourself on a daily basis so that when you have those short moments of, of, of actual action to take on that training, you’re elite at what you do, you’re efficient at what you do you experience successes more frequently because of that. And I found especially when I left baseball is being groomed and trained by the pros. That it wasn’t a sports pressure of being an athlete or a star or playing that game that really broke me it was it was the dysfunctions around me family dynamics, people’s addictions, and learning how that actually impacted my ability to actually stay focus and feel the love of the game for the love of the game. And in bowl writing, I really learned that, that focus that determination, and that presence of mind emotional stability and ability to be really calm when you’re in that moment to get on the back of a bowl and that shoot. That is where I really grasped the the understanding of this holistic focus and being able to just take action. And when I I mean every time that I was not present, the the training, especially in the bull riding world that was were my life really started to unfold about mindset and focus and discipline and being present. Because you get hurt in that world really quickly. But you don’t think about those things. So when you start thinking about things outside of what you’re doing when you start losing your train of focus or your ability to stay present, especially when you get ready for something like that, that’s when you notice performance, gaps, failures, you find you’re hitting certain limitations. So it really forces you when you train when you go work with these cowboys. And you’d be on the back of these barrels really being taught is like maintaining that absolute ability to stay calm in the midst of chaos, knowing that that wild animal is going to do everything it can to buck you off. When you get in the back of that chute, you feel the life filled body underneath your legs, and you recognize that this doesn’t matter. What their display is doing doesn’t matter. What matters is my presence being connected to this animal and knowing that I love doing this and that when I that gate opens up or I call that gate, everything that matters is only in that moment, nothing else and when you allow yourself to learn how to become very calm in the midst of that those moments like that your performance improves when you learn to be present with who you are, and learn to yield to the fears that might show up for you face them, you’ll find that you actually can succeed and move through those limitations. So I found that contrast. And I took that into the military and

Unknown Speaker 10:00
I realized that as a young soldier and then want to become a noncommissioned officer, and I started leading men in combat, those philosophies and principles really served me well to learn more about myself in the most chaotic moments of my life. Yeah. Yeah, I think that that’s, I think that that’s fascinating. And do you think

Unknown Speaker 10:19
I think it’s so easy for us to look around at all the problems that we experienced in the world, because it’s so immediate these days, on our phones, we can see the problems, it’s constant. And it’s almost like we’re being seduced by giving my energy and attention to places that I have zero control over. And that reduction, when I give my attention and energy somewhere else that I don’t have control over, that’s probably frustrating. And that will reduce my ability to do the things that you’ve been describing. 100% I mean, technology, especially today, what it does is it fractures people’s focus, and it sucks their energy pulls them into these different dimensions. Like, especially with social media, it’s a one dimensional space, where everybody is completely miss using what it’s meant to be. It’s a dumping ground people’s stress, everybody’s arguing, nobody’s really contained properly in that world. So when you find yourself holding your phone, and you’re so used to have no haven’t connected, you don’t realize that that is in fact, it’s like pulling you into a different world. When you learn to have the discipline to put the phone down when you don’t need it. My business partner is similar she she never touches her phone, because she’s like, when I don’t need the darn phone. I don’t want to touch it. It’s she’s too sensitive for that. And I completely understand. So you’re right, it’s when you get lost in the ethers. Everything else in the problem is going on the world. What does that do? It fractures, your ability to stay focused, and then it literally limits the power you carry. Because you’re giving your energy away to something that really doesn’t actually matter. You’re not properly contained. And until you become properly contained, you’re going to be almost it’s like that fluid at the end of the amoebic nature of humanity that doesn’t get anywhere.

Unknown Speaker 11:57
Talks about you were talking about becoming an elite at what you do. You help people figure out what that means? Or do you help? Or do most people you work with already know, this is what I want to become elite at. And you clear the way you help them to actually realize that or somewhere in the middle? Oh, well, first of all, most of the nature of my work is not even remotely in a space of helping. I’m more along the lines of a battle buddy that gets into the trenches and slays the demons a very powerful and prominent people that they have not battled through their entire lives or careers. These are people that have achieved massive amounts of success for themselves. They have built their empires in the back of pain and suffering and stress that they’ve carried on and again, you know, in our world, we hear it all the time. It’s a big cliche in the personal development space, your message your message or use your pain to drive you to create and be successful. And unfortunately, that’s a that’s a horrible philosophy to teach people and is why people stay stuck and feel like they’re chasing success and chasing peak performance. Why they don’t know what to do with the chaos that they carry around. So they stuffed down inside, they cope with life to like override the feeling of it. But they’re still able to stay aligned with making a ton of money or having no underwriting. That’s fantastic. The philosophy is that I challenge constantly as a demon slayer for these types of people as I get into their lives with them. I live with my clients, I travel with my clients, I go far beyond those philosophies of personal development of outside in and looking at people’s problems from where they’re at, where they want to be in Nothing I do is linear, nothing I do can be I brought my client from A to B, I truly transformed my life, a human life, I really do alter who they are. They’ve already achieved this level. But they’re at a point where they’re going I’ve I’ve got the bank account, I’ve got the notoriety, but I’m still like a lot of our public figures Twitch just you know, killed himself. You know, recently because of the demons he battle, I met a close friend of his who’s a two time Emmy award winning choreographer in Hollywood, she knows that him and his wife, well, they were completely shocked to this guy did that same thing with people like Bill Burr, who talks about on stage I don’t want to pass down my my demon, my rage to my daughter. It’s people like that, that don’t understand or have the right resources that are in their lives with them, making the face the demons that they carry, so they can eradicate it. So when it’s happened is I go towards coaches and therapists and things like that, to try to find solutions that give them some awareness, but don’t try to do actually get into their lives with them, and see where those nuances are, in fact, affecting their performance and not letting them be as elite Elite if as possible as they want to be. And that’s the difference to my work is why they call me. It’s because I get into their lives with them, and then go far beyond what typical traditional coaching or support is even the guys, David Goggins, all those guys out there, they’re doing really cool stuff, but at the end of the day, they’re not battling in the trenches and getting to the demons and get into the nuances and no stone left unturned. You know, they’re I mean, I’ll, I’ll fight and go through things with mother in law’s and children and co workers and employees and staff, because every element of who that person is surrounded by will affect the performance. So that’s the nature and the stark difference.

Unknown Speaker 15:00
between my work and what’s typically provided for people at that level, that’s fascinating.

Unknown Speaker 15:05
When you from the outside looking in, when you look at David Goggins, just as, as an example, it seems to me to be clear that, that he has these massive demons. And the way that he is, is his expression of trend is that he runs and runs and runs and runs and runs and runs, and physically attempts to outrun them and certainly is,

Unknown Speaker 15:29
but being aware that you have a problem is a miles away from actually fixing it.

Unknown Speaker 15:37
Well, that’s the thing is people that have the mindset that it’s usually the ones that that believe they can do it on their own, they’re the ones that need the most help. And you get a lot of IQ. And there’s a lot of unfortunate ego and narcissism and a lot of vanity nowadays. And we have people that are in these public positions, who are motivating and teaching other people, that it’s okay to just push through the pain, it’s okay to suffer. So you can, you know, succeed in your life. And they’re also creating limitations that people because they’re not teaching, there’s a difference between proper suffering and improper suffering, there’s a difference between sacrifice and improper sacrifice. They’re just saying do it at all costs, like you said, he’s out trying to run it. But he’s just what he’s doing is he’s he’s not actually eradicating anything that really does, in fact, affect him internally. And it’s the mindset that I can do it on my own, I have to face my fears, I have to battle through things. You can see it on people’s faces, how they interact with the public, the way they talk. It’s all about identifying those little blind spots that most people are missing, and recognizing for yourself, you know, what if my coach, if my therapist if my consultant or advisor or mentor

Unknown Speaker 16:48
is not making me feel extremely uncomfortable, and it’s not making me mad, it’s not challenging me that that’s driving me to a place where I feel absolutely horrible inside when I’m doing this work with them. If I’m not able to discern the difference between what it is they’re actually trying to do, or tell me versus what it is that I actually need, or what is not feeling right. But when actually feels, you know, appropriate for what it is that I’m looking to achieve, then I need to reevaluate who I’m hiring. But most people don’t know how to discern the differences. So I would tell people that are even listening is like you have to be able to discern the difference between someone who really is in it 100% Only for you or they’re in it basically for what it is they want to teach you based on their experiences. And that nuance difference, transforms the game completely when you’re hiring support systems and resources to push you and challenge you and give you advice and philosophize and, and support you along the way. And I nowadays we have a lot of Yes, men out there, we have a lot of people that are not in it. 100% for the people that they’re supporting. They’re in it for their bottom line, they’re in it for themselves. They want to teach and provide these philosophies that they’ve learned over their lives. You need a master, you don’t need a teacher. And that’s the big piece that I want to give to people. I love it. It’s such an important differentiation. And very well said while excuse me wildly. Thank you so much for coming on. Where can people learn more about you? How can they engage? Where can they find your podcast? And where can have a copy of your book? Oh, absolutely. Well, I mean, wildly WYLIE McG I have looked at all the different philosophies and insights that I’ve discovered over the years and working behind the scenes with some pretty prominent folks. The life philosophies I’ve discovered over the years that really do transform from within, are there I wrote a couple of white papers, there are people on a read, that really do challenge the way you think about performance and leadership development, discipline, inability to really challenge who you are and step outside that proverbial comfort zone the right way, what that’s actually going to look like and feel like, but yeah, the podcast is a passion project wise words or whiskey with Wylie McGraw. We’re alive across all podcasts mediums from Spotify, Apple, podcasts, iTunes, even YouTube, we’re building out a page for that as well. I’d love to have people participate. Subscribe, we’ve got some great whiskey sponsors coming on as well to support the show. And we’re also doing George a whiskey giveaway once a month for the next year, premium bottle of scotch whiskey with a heavy bottom rocks class and then an opportunity for people to be a guest on the show so they can go check that out there and jump into the free giveaway and we’ll you know, we’ll have great conversations on high performance living. Amazing. Yeah, if you enjoyed this as much as I did show while your appreciation and share today’s show with a friend who also appreciates good ideas go to Wiley That’s w y li E mc And check out the white papers that Wiley mentioned. Check out all the great thought leadership and his experience. And I’m confident you can find a million different ways to benefit and check out the wise words in whiskey podcast wherever you listen to podcast find the YouTube channel. If you’re a whiskey fan, take advantage of that giveaway and Joe

Unknown Speaker 20:00
into the world of all things why they McGraw and to help start living life on your terms and stop running away from from those things that you’re trying to run away from and actually address them head on.

Unknown Speaker 20:14
And Wiley, brother. Yeah, brother. Thank you very much. Appreciate it. And until next time remember, do your part by doing your best

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