I’ve got part 2 of the interview with John Rowley on Old School Fitness Tips.
Old School Fitness Tips
Rick Kaselj: So now moving to kind of a couple of topics that aren’t usually covered in interviews like this. You have different responsibilities and you are all over the world; what are some of your tips or how do you end up managing stress?
John Rowley: I’m stressed out, believe me. You know that’s a good question and it kind of gets you off of the fitness talk. I have got 2 other books out. One is called “Climb Your Ladder of Success without Running out of Gas.” The other one is called “The Power of Positive Fitness” and both of them get into that. And the way I do it, personally, covers various things.
The number one thing in my life that I do is I turn things over to God. And when I feel stressed, I know there is a God and it’s not me, so I give a damn. I am a Christian so my faith plays a big role in that.
Secondly, exercise. You know, a lot of times I’ll kill two birds with one stone. In the morning, I’ll go out and go for a walk. I’ll go for a half hour, an hour long walk. I’ve got an eighty five pound pit bull, so I walk around with him.
So I am killing three birds with one stone. I’m walking my dog and making him happy. I’m getting a little bit of cardiovascular, but I’m also relieving my stress because any time you use your body it releases stress. But then also what I am doing is I call it a prayer walk. I’ll go out there and I’ll spend my time with my God praying.
So that’s what I do. When I was in Manhattan Real Estate, I wasn’t a Christian back then but what I used to do back then is I would work for 90 minutes and then I’d go walk around the office somewhere. I’d go relieve my stress by walking.
Now, relieving stress is just a matter of a mental and a physical thing. And typically if you relieve the physical stress, the mental stress will a lot of times evaporate. So I would go to the gym at lunch time, that’s was one thing I did. If I didn’t go to the gym at lunch time, I’d go for a walk.
I like to stay active and to move. And let’s face it. Lot of times stress builds up in your body and it affects everything else and your body, your mind and your spirit are housed in your body. Now the Bible says that we are body, mind and spirit, I think God says put body first because everything else is in your body. If your body is a mess, your mind and your spirit are going to follow.
Rick Kaselj: Awesome! And then what goes hand in hand with stress, this might be the next step after stress, is what do you suggest because I know from chatting with you at the meetings in Florida that you know you have got a lot of stuff on the go how do you manage being overwhelmed?
John Rowley: I’m really good at spinning a lot of plates. What overwhelms me is if I am just dealing with one thing that will drive me. You have to know yourself. That is critical to success in any area of your life.
If you’re 7’2 feet and 380 pounds and your goal is to be a jockey, it’s not happening. Regardless of how motivated you or how psyched you are about being a jockey you’re physical limitations aren’t there.
Just like we have physical limitations we also have mental limitations. We have emotional limitations. You know some people are just more emotional than others. Some people get overwhelmed if they have got too many things going at them at once. Others get overwhelmed if they just got to focus on one thing that drives them out of their mind.
So for me personally, I keep a list of my projects. I use an online program called Basecamp that my whole team uses. We keep all of our projects there and organize them there. I also use another thing called High Rise where I manage my contacts. And then I use another thing called Basecamp where I communicate with my team instead of getting overwhelmed through email.
It works for me but the key is setting a goal. If you have a project that you are working on, set a goal and get the darn thing done. So many people start a project and then they avoid the very thing they should do. Don’t avoid it. Get something done, man.
And I’ll tell you something, I have worked in every kind of field I am an author and I was in real estate, I owned a construction company, I owned a gym and the common denominator among most people is that they don’t want to get anything done. They want to make believe they can make something and they don’t get anything done. So that adds to your stress also.
Then also, people who work in the corporate worlds that have regular jobs unlike me, they’re at work and they worry about their family because when they were home they didn’t do anything. So they get nothing done at work. So then they go back home to their wife and kids and they’re distracted by work because for the last 8 or 10 hours they got nothing done at work. So they are then neglecting of their family again.
Be present. Most people are never present.
I don’t know if you have noticed that when you talk to people, most people aren’t even present when you talk to them. You know, you’re in the middle of a conversation and they are kind of looking around, “Hey is there anybody more interesting here that I can meet.” You know, they are not even listening to you so most people are not even present in the moment. I think being present in the moment, setting goals and focusing on those goals is critical. And I think it’s a lost skill today. I don’t think many people do that anymore.
Rick Kaselj: That’s true. Now one last question, what is your best business tip?
John Rowley: My best business advice, it depends on what business you’re in. Like I said most people are not present, most people don’t bring anything to the table. I think most people, a lot of people and I know a lot of people like this, they are afraid to stand out.
In the corporate world today, the people who are not standing out are getting laid off. And a lot of people are just avoiding standing out because they don’t want get laid off. I’ll tell you something, I’d rather stand out and get laid off because I was standing out than being hiding in a corner and getting laid off because I brought nothing to the table.
Most people, I hate to say this, I feel most people don’t bring anything to the table. I have worked in real estate and I have worked with thousands of people. I can’t think of anybody who stood out and who really brought anything to the table.
People who I worked with, people who were at my level or above, don’t bring anything to the table. And then also we have a tendency to do what people expect of us.
Let me tell you a story. I know a guy who was in Manhattan who lived on Sutton Place. He owned a huge firm. Now I don’t want give too many details so nobody knows who he is, but you know he owns a huge firm, multi-millionaire and probably a billionaire, a big Wall Street firm.
He did that. He went to law school and got his MBA and everything else. He was a highly educated guy and he found out that he was miserable. Lives in a beautiful Sutton Place apartment and made a fortune but was miserable.
So what he did, he started thinking, “Why am I miserable? I have everything.”
Well basically he did what his family expected of him so went down the path that his family expected of him. But his passion was music.
He wanted to be a Jazz musician. So what he did is Monday through Friday, now he didn’t want to give up his job because he liked living in Sutton Place. He liked the things that money bought him but he also wanted to bring back that passion into his life.
So when you went to look for him Monday to Friday 9 to 5, he was at his office. If you tried to look for him on a Friday night, a Saturday night and Sunday, he was in one of those small Jazz clubs in Manhattan somewhere playing as a Jazz musician.
I think there are a lot of people out there who are struggling Jazz musicians who might be accountants. They might be baseball or football coaches that are struggling attorneys. They might be people who are out there who should be focusing on the odds but instead they are in the corporate America.
So I think if you can find out what your passion is and if it relates to your business, man go for it. If it doesn’t relate to your business and that’s where you need to be whole, go pursue your passion and there are ways to doing it.
If you are a musician, go work in your church, or go play at a coffee shop. There’s ways to do that. But most people never pursue their passion.
See, me, I’m different. I was pretty clear with what my goals were. I was always pretty clear with what my potential is although I always over emphasized my potential. I think I can do a lot more than people think I can do. And every time I set a goal I achieve it though.
You know, I set my first goal to write my first book, in fact Barbara Corcoran mentioned to me I should write a book, so I worked on my first book and I got turned down by over 300 agents and publishers. Everybody turned me down.
Well, when I finally got it published I hit number one, and if I would have listened to the critics I never would have written my first book. If I would have listened to the critics I never would have stopped being a janitor in Franklin K. Lane High School in Brooklyn. If I would have listened to the critics I wouldn’t have achieved anything in life.
So most people listen to their family, listen to the critics and everything else and I think what you need to do is take a good assessment of what your skills and abilities are and go for your skills and abilities.
Most people are so focused on doing things they are trained in that they never do things that they are good at. And if you focus on your skills, you focus on the passion that’s inside of you, if you focus on your unique gift, that’s when greatness comes in. If you focus on strengthening up your weaknesses, you will always be mediocre.
And I think most people focus on strengthening their weaknesses because they’re insecure and what they achieve is nothing. They become mediocre. The few, the very few who focus on their gift, who focus on their unique ability, those are the ones who change the world.
Rick Kaselj: Awesome.
John Rowley: That should have been my two cents. I’m a D student you know.
Rick Kaselj: I don’t want to ask any other question. I think that’s a great spot to end. Okay, we’re close to wrapping things up. Do you have any other last things that you want to leave people with?
John Rowley: Well, we are here to talk about fitness and I really want to emphasize the value of fitness in your life. You know lot of times I will do the news and people will ask me, what should people do? Do something, whether it’s Old School New Body, whether it’s some other type of program, try something that’s going to work. Something that you’re going to do.
If you are not at a level where you even feel comfortable going to the gym and today, in today’s world everybody should feel comfortable going to the gym. There are so many different options.
People are not judgmental in gym. Here is an example, Daniel Wright, he was one of the finalists on The Biggest Loser a few years ago. He was working out at our gym and my son and I had no idea that he was doing the Biggest Loser’s TV show. He came in and he was a very heavy young man and my son immediately went over to him and befriended him. And we had him over for dinner and later on we found out he was on the Biggest Loser, and the guy couldn’t’ be nicer.
But usually if you are not in shape, people in the gym they will embrace you. If you hadn’t been to a gym they will embrace you. So my suggestion is do something because it’s going affect every area of your life for the better. There is no downside of being physically fit. And if you worry about not having the time, there are programs out there other than mine that will get it to you.
But if you don’t have anything else to do just get in the habit of going for a walk; and that’s really all fitness is. Fitness is a habit. Being unfit is a habit too by the way. You’re eating bagels for breakfast, that’s a habit. Replace it with something else.
Sitting down and watching TV and not moving very much, that’s a habit. It’s a bad habit, but it’s a habit. Go for a walk. Replace some of your bad habits with good habits and what will happen is over a period of time is you will effortlessly not only transform your body but your life.
So it’s all just habits. It’s habit replacement, habit transformation really.
Rick Kaselj: Awesome. Where can people get more information about you, John?
Well, after this interview if anybody is interested in learning more, it’s JohnRowley.net. If you go there, make sure you grab the free gift there, three steps to transform your body and your life. It’s actually two separate books.
You can get more there. We’ve got some videos as well and love to see you at JohnRowley.net. Rick I really appreciate you for having me on. I know you’re busy. You have got lot of people who’ve got options for being on this show and a lot of people want be on it, and I really appreciate you taking the time to have me on.
Rick Kaselj: Thank you very much John and thank you very much Exercises for Injuries readers, listeners and viewers.
And let me know what you think of this interview or video. Just head down below, you can like it or leave a comment for John and I.
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Take care and bye bye.
Rick Kaselj, MS.