It’s often been said that thin threads of circumstance bring people into our lives and my introduction to Darren Hardy is a great example. I was living in Broomfield, CO in the Spring of 2012, when a member at the gym where I was working gave me a CD called “Making the Shift.” The author was Darren Hardy and the content he shared was on the mental shift needed to go from being an employee to being an entrepreneur.
The info on the CD was excellent, however, the member was using it specifically to recruit for a business he was involved in. While I had no interest in his business, I was so grateful for the connection to Darren because the lessons I’ve learned from him over the past eight years and counting have been life-changing. Ultimately, my time in Colorado was short, and I moved back to Dallas in August of 2012.
The following is a brief timeline of the investments I’ve made in my education with resources from Darren…leading up to the once in a lifetime opportunity to meet him in person:
- 2012 – Received the CD, “Making the Shift”
- 2013 – Purchased Darren’s book, “The Compound Effect”
- 2014 – Joined Darren’s DarrenDaily community
- 2015 – Purchased Darren’s book, “The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster”
- 2016 – Purchased the online program, Insane Productivity
In the Spring of 2016, I received an email from Tom Ziglar, son of the late great Zig Ziglar. As a long-time follower of Zig, I was on their email list so this wasn’t a personal message. It was, however, promoting an upcoming special event that at first glance was pretty intriguing. Best selling author and speaker Brian Tracy was planning to hold a three-day “success” training weekend in May and it was practically going to be in my back yard. I live in North Dallas and the event was to take place just minutes from my home.
I quickly scanned through the details especially looking for the price when I came across one particular point that really caught my attention. Darren Hardy, who I had been following at that point for four years was named as one of the featured keynote speakers. After searching frantically, I finally found the cost of the event. The base package was $1,000 and there was also a VIP upgrade for an extra $497 which gave you access to the guest speakers during a private banquet-style lunch on Friday and Saturday.
Now in all fairness, I think a lot of Brian Tracy who is a brilliant man. I purchased my first of several Brian Tracy books back in the ’90s, however, there’s no way I would have paid $1,497 to see him. But to see Darren Hardy live, it was a done deal. I immediately clicked on the link provided in the email to register and then the countdown began.
From that day on April 6 to the actual event May 13th-15th may have been one of the longest waits of my life…but well worth it. The line up of speakers on Friday was solid and the opportunity to meet Brian Tracy during the VIP lunch was very special, however, my sights were still set on Saturday with Darren.
He was scheduled to speak mid-morning so I didn’t have to wait very long and yet the time seemed to drag on and on from speaker to speaker who for the most part I had never heard of. And then finally, after a warm introduction from the host, and a short video featured on two massive screens, Darren emerged from behind the curtains and walked out on the stage.
The whole experience was very surreal and he seemed way larger than life. It was very much like a chance meeting with a celebrity that maybe you’ve seen hundreds of times on TV or in the movies. Between listening to Darren on audio and watching his videos on YouTube, I had heard his voice hundreds of times. So when he finally spoke, it was like listening to a friend because of the overwhelming familiarity.
His topic was on productivity and the content was amazing. Darren was as polished as I would have expected and clearly the standout speaker by far…for the entire weekend. I took pages of notes and as he started wrapping up, my mind began racing with the anticipation of hopefully getting to meet him at the upcoming VIP lunch. With his talk complete, he made a unique offer good for the weekend to enroll in his world-class online productivity training program called Insane Productivity.
I had really not thought about investing further beyond the price to attend the event, however, Darren made a special and rather appealing offer for the event attendees. With very little hesitation, I jumped on the opportunity to further my education from the man who had become a mentor through his training resources.
There were a couple of other speakers who followed Darren and then it was off to the VIP lunch. When I walked into the room, there were already quite a few people in a long line waiting to have their picture with Darren. While I was hungry, food was not my priority and after leaving my journal at one of the place settings, I jumped in line. After what seemed like forever, it was finally my turn.
As I walked up with hand extended to introduce myself, Darren graciously shook my hand and we took our places for the photo. It was short and sweet due to the large number of people but still pretty freakin’ cool too me. I thanked Darren for being there and then made my way over to the buffet line.
I was hoping that we might have the opportunity to do some Q&A with Darren before the afternoon session, and fortunately, that turned out to be the case. Once he wrapped up the photos, he positioned himself centrally in the room giving us the opportunity to ask questions. I was one of the few lucky ones who was called on and it only added to an already amazing experience. Given the volume of people, it really wasn’t practical to spend any one on one time with Darren although I still thought my VIP upgrade was well worth it and will treasure the memory forever.
To wrap up the event, I want to share a humorous experience that happened after lunch. Darren sat in the crowd along with the rest of the attendees for the afternoon session. He was only twenty or so feet away from me in clear view which made what happened next all the more humorous.
If you’ve gone through Insane Productivity, you know very definitely that Darren is not into high-fiving, messaging your neighbor, childhood regressions, or walking on burning coals. He’s way more all-business, so just give him the goods so he can go back and start kicking butt with the lessons learned. Well, much to his I’m guessing displeasure, the first big speaker after lunch was Darren’s polar opposite.
He had the audience on their feet, clapping their hands, doing backflips and hoorahs, and shouting phrases of affirmation. It was quite the scene and I could tell Darren was not enjoying it. I can only imagine what he was thinking. Darren is one of the most accomplished speakers you will ever see but is actually quite introverted so this was not his kind of scene. For what it’s worth, I’m with him and prefer a more professional environment.
Closing thoughts for my readers:
This post is actually the first of two as I will soon be publishing the top lessons I’ve learned from Darren. To wrap up, I want to leave you with the following which is the embodiment of everything Darren and his A-Team stand for. For more information on the resources and programs they offer, go to darrenhardy.com.
YOU WEREN’T BORN TO BE GOOD
YOU ARE HERE TO BE GREAT
You Were Called Here For A Reason
To fulfill a special purpose. A mission.
To contribute something unique.
Something that wouldn’t have existed without you.
It’s your Hero’s Journey.