Though we might not realize it at first, overcoming adversity is the way to revealing our true life’s purpose. The path to success, to the goals we’ve set for ourselves, is not straightforward, but accepting this as a fact of life will allow us to come out on top at the end of the day. Lance Essihos is an innovative entrepreneur and podcaster. He sits down with Terri Levine to discuss the finer details of overcoming adversity in life. Lance’s story might just be the inspiration you need to overcome all the challenges that come your way one by one, so don’t miss out on this empowering conversation.
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Your Life’s Purpose, Revealed With Lance Essihos
I have Lance Essihos with me. He’s a Canadian globetrotter and an ambitious entrepreneur. He’s on a journey to inspire the masses by helping them achieve their life purpose one conversation at a time. Welcome, Lance. It’s good to have you with us.
Thank you. I’m excited to be here.
Let’s get started on how did your journey in life bring you to where you are because I’m always curious.
I started out playing hockey. I was going for the hockey dream, trying to make it pro. I went through challenging teenage years which led me to do a lot of different things that eventually led to the end of my career. From there, I was trying to figure out my new identity from hockey player to who I am now. I then got into the restaurant and bar industry. I did that for many years. I traveled the world. There are a lot of positives but also a lot of things that were life lessons. After doing that for a long time, I started to realize what I was good at and what I enjoyed. The sustainability of that profession wasn’t there. From there, I pivoted over and started getting into more of the entrepreneur lifestyle. I also started a podcast and it evolved into that. It’s been quite the journey. There have been lots of highs and lows, but it’s all part of it. That’s how I ended up where we are now.
It’s interesting as you’re describing the journey. If we look at anyone’s life, you described the highs and lows, which I relate to. It’s like, “When that was happening, that was amazing. That wasn’t quite amazing and then this happened.” I agree with you. When you go back and we look at, “How did I get where I am?” There are many different paths that take us there. I’m glad you’ve landed where you’ve landed. What is this about the passion of helping masses of people and inspiring them to live their life purpose? Why is that important to you?You will feel the call to be of service to others. Click To Tweet
I have always felt that I was being called to something that has to be service to others. That’s the only thing that has given me fulfillment so far. It’s to know that I’m impacting people. I didn’t know what that would be but what’s been interesting is having a show and allowing people to share their stories and providing a safe container for that is valuable. Being able to do that and to be able to connect with people on a daily basis has been inspiring for me. It’s paved the way for what I want to do.
I didn’t mean for that to happen but I’m noticing in my own life because there have been a lot of difficult times with losing family. A lot of times, the healing starts when you start to share your story. You start to peel back the layers and uncover these things. There’s something beautiful about a conversation when somebody opens up and shares their story. I’ve realized that I’m paying attention to how I feel during these conversations and there’s something magical there. That’s where I’ve been focusing my time, being able to do that and provide that for people. It gives me that real sense of fulfillment. That’s how this has all been born.
It is important for human beings to be able to share their story. If they’re not an author, they’re not a speaker, or they don’t have a podcast. They have that in them and they don’t have a way to share it. I love that you’re giving people that outlet. You’re allowing people, especially in my experience when people are talking out loud, it’s like they’re hearing themselves for the first time.
Certain people are better at telling their stories. You can see that they want to tell it but sometimes they don’t know how. It’s nice to be able to provide that for people.
One of the things why I love doing the radio and TV is I get to meet cool people like you. I get to make new friends and new people. I get to find out who else is out there, what they’re doing, how they’re helping and serving. There are few times that I have said, “I’m so caught up in the guest. I don’t remember that I’m interviewing them for anybody’s purpose but mine.” There is something about being whether it’s a TV host, radio or podcast, it doesn’t matter what. We are digging and finding some answers. By hearing other people share their answers, we’re helping them and then we’re helping other people. Is that where the one conversation at a time part comes in?
Yeah. It’s beautiful, the magic that you can create from that and the roller coaster of emotions. With the topic of my show with Adversity, you can tend to go deep but that also allows people to go places maybe they haven’t. You can always lead them to an energetic level that allows them to feel good at the end when they walk away. That’s my point. To be able to dig deep but always leave people feeling better than they did before. That’s been my motto even when I worked in the bars. Make an impact and they either feel better or worse than they were before. That’s something that’s simple. If you focus on each conversation, that’s a powerful tool. Each conversation is so different and so unique. It’s a beautiful thing.
It’s so important. First of all, where can people hear your podcast? Tell us the name of it and how people can find it?
It’s called University of Adversity. It’s everywhere. It’s a fun one. It’s been rewarding. It’s been therapy for me, to be honest. It’s selfish, I get to connect with these people and sometimes I got to pinch myself because it’s been healing in my life. It’s been the life hack that I never knew I needed. I get excited about it. People can feel the energy and it’s aligned with who I am. It’s everywhere on all the platforms.
Where do people find out more? Is there any website to go to in case people also want to get in touch with you?
It’s my first and last name, LanceEssihos.com and all on social media. My name is easy on SEO to look up on Google. I got lucky in that regard where I don’t have to compete with anybody.Lean into discomfort because there's usually going to be a lesson of some sort. Click To Tweet
That’s helpful. It’s funny, I have a client and her last name is Canon. She said, “I wanted to do a website with my name but I can’t.” I’m like, “It’s a popular name. We have to change it a bit.” What is some advice that you have for somebody who’s reading and maybe they’re dealing with some adversity? Maybe a family member is ill, maybe someone’s dying or whatever it is, what are your words of wisdom?
What I’ve found to be useful for myself is to learn to lean into the discomfort of it. There’s usually going to be a lesson of some sort. It’s not always easy. It’s full acceptance for the good and the bad in life. That’s what I’m learning. It’s coming at you no matter what. The adversity is coming at you. What I try to do is provide tools so people know that adversity is your friend. It’s not your enemy. I know it’s hard in the moment sometimes. If you can get comfortable with that uncomfortableness and you can lean into that, there’s always going to be a gift or a reward on the other side of it.
If you can look at things like that, life becomes easier because you know that no matter what, these challenges come. It’s all mindset on how you go. If you run away from it, it’s going to keep coming at you. A lot of people that don’t want to face it will turn to alcohol, drugs, sex or whatever it is. I’ve experienced it in my own life. I had a toxic alcohol life for a long time. I realized there was a deeper root there that I wasn’t facing. I encourage people to step into it. Learn and try to understand what it is trying to teach you. From there, you’ll always learn a lesson.
I was posting on Facebook and I said something in my post that everything is a gift. The present is a gift. Someone took up an argument with me like how they do on social media, “No, you don’t know what’s going on in my life.” I said, “I was having what I considered a perfect life years ago. Instantaneously, I got a neurological disease that changed my entire life. I went into an eighteen-month pity party. At the end of eighteen months, one day I woke up and said, ‘No more. I’m done.’” I’ve continued to live my life and look at that wake-up as one of the greatest moments. Weird as it may sound or maybe not to you, but I look at that neurological disease as a gift. It was an amazing gift and it brought so much learning. Because I’ve had that experience, I’m different and I also can help other people who are dealing with something like that.
No matter what on social media, there’s always going to be somebody that knows it all or takes what you said the wrong way. It’s crazy but I completely agree. There’s always a gift in there and it’s perspective. You can choose to be the victim or be empowered. That’s the only two options. You may as well try the other way and see how it works. See if being a victim helps you. I’ve tried it and it doesn’t. It’s good to feel the discomfort. It’s not to put your head in the clouds. It’s important to feel it and let it go through your body. Learning that discomfort is as important as the feelings of bliss because it’s life. Life is meant to feel. We’re not meant to have one way. When you learn to feel, you appreciate when things are going well, when things are easy a lot more because you can see the difference. You can see the contrast.
One of my sayings is out of contrast, something new is about to be born. When there’s a contrast, instead of pushing against it, I love what you said about leaning into it. I’m like, “That’s interesting. There’s a contrast. What’s coming from that? What can I see from that? What is that teaching me?” We go through life putting up walls and pushing back. When we shift and we change, we say, “There are all these paradigms that are changing. What if I just roll with them and embrace them?” We’ll be mentally and physically healthier too.
In my own life, when I’m trying to control things too much, when I’m gripping things too tight, you’re literally cutting off the tap of abundant energy coming in. Sometimes you need to surrender. You’ve got to obviously do your best in the moment that you can. You can’t put your head in the clouds and be naïve. Do the best you can and have your goals, but there has to be somewhat of a surrender there. It’s not always going to be linear. You’re going to zig when you want to zag. You have to accept that. If you can get comfortable with the journey itself and accept that it isn’t linear, then things get easier because we have no control essentially. We can control what we do but we can’t control what’s happening on the day and what comes at us. This stuff has been a struggle for me my whole life. I’ve realized as I start to dive into this stuff further and hear different people talking about it, lights go off and I go, “There’s something here that you need to surrender to the process sometimes and full acceptance of the moment.”
I’m going to relate this in an odd way. I’m a business strategist and when people start working with me, they want to roll up their sleeves and be like, “Let’s make money.” I’m like, “No, we’re going to work on your inner game. We’re going to work on your thinking.” They go, “What?” I’m like, “In my experience, unless you are aligned and part of it is to surrender the outcome, the present is perfect, and be in the moment. Unless you’re there, you’re going to struggle to build a business.” I like to build businesses or do anything in life in an easier and simpler way. I like things to just unveil. I surrender outcomes in every conversation and every meeting. Even with technology, when something isn’t working, I used to fight against it like that’s going to make it work. Now I’m like, “We’ll figure it out.” I can relate to that even as a business strategist. This is advice that everyone needs to hear.
They go hand in hand. This is where people get it wrong. If you’re completely unbalanced and you’re at a hustle mode all the time, that’s great. There’s a time for that. There’s also a time to explore the other sides of things and slowing down. There’s the masculine and the feminine side to everybody. Things such as yogas, movement, breathwork, whatever you can or some practice that way can help you balance things out. I have noticed that if you’re not dealing with some of the stuff that’s in there like your past traumas, if you’re not getting that stuff out and bringing that to the surface, then it’s harder for you to manifest the success that you want.
You may say you want something but there’s a lot of clutter that you don’t have control of. That’s important, being able to navigate with a clear path instead of having all the stuff holding you back. It is going to make it difficult. You can say you want to have all the success you want but if you’re still fighting about this other stuff that hasn’t been addressed, it can make it difficult. Figuring out different sides of things instead of just the hustle mode, developing that is only going to make you better at your business. It’s only going to improve it. The balance is only going to improve you to create more success. I’ve heard this from many people too and it’s like a light went off. Once you get it, it makes total sense.Balance will improve you, and allow you to achieve more success. Click To Tweet
I’m glad you said that because of the way I used to be years ago, before I got into understanding coaching, consulting and mindset transformation, I would try to make everything happen. I thought I was in charge of the universe. I can make stuff happen. I was hustling, working and pushing. I believe that’s why I got so sick. I don’t think that happened by accident. It’s interesting when I decided to get over and live in a different way, meditate, do breathwork, have regular journaling, focus more on myself and my inner game, and not pushing, all of a sudden, everything in my life was like a jigsaw puzzle. It was all finding its way together.
I realized, the more I pushed, the more I was in the way of things. My favorite word is flow. I want to let everything flow. It might not be exactly the way I saw it in my head, yet it’s fine. We’re in the moment and I’m appreciating it. What you’re doing is helping masses of people. There are many people that when they have even a small adversity, it stops them. Whether it stops them and then they go to some form of addiction or it stops them in pursuing their life passion and purpose. As you get people to talk about it and open up, can you share any stories that you’ve had or someone related to you?
A common thing is a lot of people have trauma. We think that there’s only a certain person that has trauma, that you have to be a full-on addict to be a victim of trauma, which isn’t true. There are different levels and sometimes it’s not even the big things that cause it. There’s something that happened in your life that might have been subtle but it connected with your emotion so strongly. Maybe you got embarrassed or somebody did something when you were younger, and you’ve gravitated towards that feeling that you don’t want anything to do with that. You want to cover that up.
Whatever that trauma may be, whether minor or you’ve been through a massive accident or something, there’s always a way to get through that. It needs to be addressed. Most people have gone through that. At first, when I went into the show, I thought I’m only going to be able to talk about these crazy adversity stories, but then I realized I understand adversity more. Everybody has a story. There’s something unique about their story. Whether they’re a pro athlete or an entrepreneur or whatever they are, it’s interesting because we’re also similar.
It’s identifying that and seeing how that thing has either helped them and how they’ve grown through it. There have been many amazing things and we’ve all been through them. We’re all unique and different but we’re all similar. Once you understand and get comfortable with whatever it is you’ve gone through, then you don’t seem like the outcast for sharing your story because we’re all here together. We’re all here to grow. There’s no shame in having that. There’s no shame in trauma. That’s been what I’ve learned and my takeaway from all this.
I appreciate you sharing that. It’s important for people to know that. I’m amazed every day at how interconnected human beings are. I don’t care where in the world they live in. I don’t care about their religion, their culture, or their color, none of it makes any difference. A human being is a human being as a human being. Part of what you’re doing is helping people see that they’re not alone. At the same time, when we share our adversity, it might seem like the biggest thing in our world. When we hear other people and we relate to them, sometimes our adversities aren’t even as big as we think it is. Other people have gotten through and other people are doing well. You’re helping by giving people inspiration to move in a different direction. Whether they’re being interviewed or they’re listening to your show, this is something that they can relate to because we are all interconnected. Tell people the name of the podcast so they don’t forget.
It’s called University of Adversity.
I recommend that people tune in. I believe that no matter where you are and no matter what you’re doing, there is some adversity that you have in your life, consciously or subconsciously. It will help you to unlock that.
It’s one of these things where there are many different kinds of people that I’ve interviewed. There’s definitely something that somebody can resonate with. Not every interview is going to resonate with everybody but that’s what I enjoy about it. It’s the broad spectrum of human beings that I have on there. I highly suggest that if you want to get curious about it, if you want to hear some stories, and if you want to hear people open up. I show up as I am. I don’t put on an act. Some people may agree with some stuff, maybe they don’t but that’s the beautiful thing of it.
We talk to people who are heart-based. I can always tell the heart-based people. First of all, they have a mission that’s important and I know that is for you. Second of all, they’re authentic, in integrity, and transparent. Before we went live, we started chit-chatting and I’m like, “I like this human being.” I mean that.Let everything flow, even if things are not the way you saw them in your head. Click To Tweet
I appreciate it. Likewise.
What last words of wisdom would you like to leave the audience with that will help them in some way, shape or form?
Be kind to yourself. Do your best in what you’re doing. As cliché as it is, you have to love yourself. You have to do what you can to love yourself. When you can figure that out whether it’s small things, reward yourself for the win, that’s important. Get curious about what that looks like for you. Don’t beat yourself up, understand that adversity is coming at you but that doesn’t mean that it’s a bad thing. The more you start to dive in and learn what sets your soul on fire, the better you’re going to be at dealing with these challenges that come on a daily basis.
Make sure that you tune in to the podcast. Make sure that you check out Lance. Find him on social media. He’s easy to find. Ask yourself, are you being open-minded to let something new in? I always believe that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. Lance appeared here just for you. Take some action, University of Adversity. Lance, thank you for coming here and being a guest on the show.
Thank you so much. It’s an absolute pleasure. I appreciate it.
For the readers, I’m going to tell you about something I normally don’t talk about here. As I was talking to Lance, I realized that if you don’t have one of my latest books, you probably need this one. It’s About To Break: The Path to True Forgiveness. That does take you on an autobiography journey of my life and my adversity. Many people look at me and they go, “You must have an easy lucky life.” The answer is no. However, I’ll teach you step-by-step the path to true forgiveness, which allowed me to live in the moment, be joyful and be happy regardless of adversity. Make sure you listen to Lance’s podcast and then get About to Break: The Path to True Forgiveness. I believe that ties into our conversation and will help you and support you. Thank you again for tuning in. We’ll see you next time.
About Lance W Essihos
Lance Esshios is a visionary who has experienced life through three very different lenses – as a hockey player, a bartender and now an innovative entrepreneur and podcaster. Lance himself is no stranger to adversity, he has faced some of life’s most difficult challenges, from grinding his way through the hockey ranks to travelling the world as a bartender. Through his personal battle with drugs and alcohol in his twenties, the tragic loss of his brother to suicide followed by the great loss of his father to cancer only a year later, Lance realized he had hit rock bottom. In the darkest of days, he made a promise to himself that he would create a new life, one that would make an impact and inspire the masses, leaving the world in a better place than he found it.
Lance has made it his mission to facilitate the message of positive change through adversity and encourage people to see the light through the darkness of life’s worst moments. Since making the shift from being a bar manager two years ago, he has been developing his skills while following his passion for human connection and relationship building. Through his podcast “University of Adversity”, Lance extracts the very valuable messages of undeniable resilience, bravery, courage and hope from each of his guests, lessons his listeners can actively apply to their own lives. Podcasting has brought him such fulfillment that he has grown his dream one step further and into creating a start up called Mic-Up podcast production. Mic-Up provides a full white glove Podcast service that includes production,management, and marketing which allows people the freedom to have their own voice and success through podcasting without all of the work. He also helps existing podcasts with the management and production of their shows, so that they can focus on their growing business and other priorities.
Lance W Essihos is the creator of the increasingly popular podcast “University of Adversity”, an innovative series that delivers inspiring stories of people who have overcome incredible adversity and gone forward to achieve limitless success. These interviews share the real journeys of inspiring humans who have reached great heights in the face of such challenge and struggle. He has connected with NY Times best selling Authors, Pro athletes, Celebrities, and some of the biggest thought leaders of today.