In this Episode
- [00:31]What incites you to turn over a new leaf? Stephan shares his metamorphic experience on Podcast Junkies with Harry Duran.
- [05:15]A personal development junkie like Stephan found a treasure trove of genuine community in the Podcast Movement.
- [07:56]Stephan unfolds the sweeping changes in his life after showing up at a Tony Robbins event.
- [11:46]Stephan describes how his Get Yourself Optimized podcast evolved over time, gleaming pearls of wisdom in each episode.
- [16:54]Who were some of Stephan’s prime guests on his shows?
- [24:56]Harry and Stephan hash over the deep connection to the universe and the synergy between science and spirituality.
- [31:34]Podcasting is a God-given gift to Stephan. How does he hold the fort with baggage that isn’t his? Take note of his three D’s.
- [35:53]Stephan’s burning desire is to contribute to society. When did he decide to quench this thirst?
- [41:50]Based on the Kabbalah principle, what nature of sharing do you practice?
- [43:39]During a spiritual awakening, the God box within you is touched. How does Stephan’s system respond to his awakening experience?
- [54:31]What’s paramount in manifesting your intentions?
- [58:52]Harry wishes to know the misconceived things about Stephan.
- [62:07]Stephan speaks about growth, and Harry affirms the principle of giving in to the flow of the universe.
- [66:49]Are you hooked on Stephan’s nuggets of wisdom? If yes, visit his site at stephanspencer.com. Catch striking episodes of his podcasts, Marketing Speak (marketingspeak.com) and Get Yourself Optimized (getyourselfoptimized.com).
It just shows that there’s this connection between science and spirit. We are wired to be spiritual beings
Podcast Junkies episode 104. This week, we spoke to Stephan Spencer. More on that in a minute. But last week, did you catch our conversation with Desmond Adams? How interesting was he? He’s so humble and so sincere that I connected with him immediately. I can’t believe that he was putting off coming on the show.
I’ve asked a couple of times and we were supposed to get it set up. We have a mutual friend, Jeff Brown. I’m just happy that it happened. I’m happy we got to talk and I’m happy I have conversations with my friends who are fellow bloggers.
We connect the Podcast Movement as I do often with my friends. It just gives me more conversations to have on the air with people that I enjoy speaking to. Check that out, 103.
Stephan is also in that same circle. We actually were in a mastermind group, Taki Moore‘s Black Belt. He’s doing a lot of good things. I’m actually holding his book in my hand, and it’s heavy. It’s called The Art of SEO: Mastering Search Engine Optimization.
He is the man when it comes to SEO. He speaks frequently at conferences about the topic. But that’s not the only thing he does. He was the founder of Netconcepts. He’s a three-time author of the book I just mentioned and a couple of others. He’s the inventor of GravityStream automated pay for performance search SEO platform. And he’s blogging all the time.
You think that a lot of those things would be what we covered on this episode, and it’s not the case. We talked about his investment that he made in himself to change his life and about the time that he spent with Tony Robbins in the Tony Robbins group, about how he met the love of his life through these conferences, and how he’s really just dramatically just changed his life. It’s crazy.
When you hear his story about who he was and who he is now, it is night and day, folks, night and day. It was just fascinating because, as we are apt to do here, we go off on tangents and we get deep into what makes people tick. I’ll tell you right now, Stephan is an incredibly interesting guy. I’m happy we had this conversation.
Without further ado, check out my conversation with Stephan. Stay tuned for the retention hashtag for frequent listeners of the show. If you’re new to the show, that’s where we engage with our listeners, our family, and find out if they’re really paying attention because I give my hashtag that’s only available at the end of the show. We’ve got a new sponsor as well, PodFunnel. We’ll talk about that, but let’s have a chat with Stephan.
Welcome to Podcast Junkies.
Thanks for having me.
We just started talking.
Sometimes we do a formal entry or I just ask you how your days are going.
It’s going fantastic. I told you already, I just landed a new client, so I’m flying high.
We were just talking about the Podcast Movement. I was wondering if you could just repeat what was so important or what you noticed differently about Podcast Movement that you haven’t seen or that your wife hadn’t seen in other conferences that you’ve been to?There's this connection between science and spirit. We are wired to be spiritual beings. Click To Tweet
It was a really genuine community. Not that people are not genuine at other conferences, but they’re making podcasts and doing their art. They’re passionate about it and it’s their mission not to make a big pile of money because most people are not making money podcasting. It’s a cost center. It’s a cost center for me.
I even had one of my assistants add up all of the expenses. Holy cow, $4400 a month for three podcast shows. Two of mine and my fiance, Orion, have her podcast as well. Three podcasts, we’re doing show notes and transcripts. We’re doing PDF, nicely formatted. Versions of the transcripts with stock photos and everything.
Episodes are pulling quotes from the transcript and using those, and the episode art, and everything. Social media, all of that, $4400 a month, so whoa. But back to your question of what was special about Podcast Movement is just a magical community of people. It’s just really, really great.
Orion, for one, was just so relieved to be in a community of people who are interested in making a difference in the world and not just having a really slick marketing, because we go to a lot of conferences. They’re great information and it’s all about the money. Show me the money.
How many do you go to a year?
Probably 40 or 50.
I speak at a bunch. We’re in a number of masterminds and go to a lot of seminars. It’s a lot. It’s a lot, a lot. I kind of am a junkie for learning.
A conference junkie.
Conference junkie, seminar junkie, personal development junkie. Yeah.
It speaks a little bit from the conversations we’ve had in the past about the story of how you’ve changed your life. I think you’re a big proponent of learning what it is you don’t know in order to make yourself a better person.
Absolutely. I’ve had such a huge transformation happen. I showed you what I used to look like back before I went through my transformation. The before and after is pretty shocking. That was a big kick in the butt, too, like going to the Tony Robbins event and doing the firewalk.
I realized if I can walk on fire– on 2000-degree hot coals, I can certainly go and get LASIK. I was a big whip about that until I went and walked on fire. Then I made all these other changes and I became literally unrecognizable from the guy I was. That spilled over into my business, my finances, and everything. My whole life was rebooted just because I went to a Tony Robbins event and I decided to take action from that.
I want to share that with the world. That’s why I have my Optimized Geek podcast (now Get Yourself Optimized), so that I could share some of the wisdom that I got from all these other gurus and experts in areas like biohacking and mindsets, sex even. We’ve had a sexologist who was just mind blowingly amazing, like Miss Jaiya. That was a great episode of my podcast. Oh, my god.
SEO is my thing. It’s my bread and butter.
I want to share this with the world, and that’s where this podcast came in. Then I decided also, I really am in the space of marketing. I am known as an SEO expert and I need to have a podcast on marketing, too, because that’s my thing. That’s my bread and butter.
Now I have two podcasts. It’s a lot of balls to juggle. I got my consulting clients that I’m working on, too. It’s a lot, but I love it and I wouldn’t do it any other way. I would never give up these podcast shows. I’m even thinking, maybe I should have another one where I’m just doing an AskPat show, where it’s just me instead of having guests.
I love having guests. I’ve had amazing guests like Byron Katie, Dave Asprey, and Jay Abraham, but how about just me? I’ll be the star of the show and then there’s another show that I have to manage. Orion’s like, are you crazy? You can barely manage two shows, and then all your clients, and all the travel we do. That’s just nuts.
But you’re not alone. The minute they’ve got their one show under some system or schedule, then immediately, their thoughts are like, well, I could. Because we always feel like as podcasters, once we’ve been given the platform, we always think that there’s another topic that we can talk about and educate people on.
Yeah, and there’s another format we could do. Oh, we should do a Q&A type of show, or maybe it should just be me and a co-host just riffing back and forth every week. It’s like, no, shiny object syndrome. Let’s just let it go. Just get solid and consistent. Just really on a roll with your two shows and you’re good.
As you’ve started to grow The Optimized Geek, I know in the beginning, you mentioned that you wanted to have people there that helped and that were important for you in your transformation. As the show has matured, have you been looking? Are you still connecting with people that were helpful for you or has that now broadened to people that inspire you in a different way?
Yeah, it’s broadened. It includes people that I’ve just met, for example. I hear them speak at a conference, and they’re amazing, and I’m like, ah, this is a topic that would really resonate with my listeners, that would really help them. Yeah, let’s get them on.
I like to see all of the wisdom and experience shining through in an episode.
As far as topics are concerned, as long as it’s in the wheelhouse of life transformation, it could be career, peer group, partner, intimacy, sex, anything like biohacking. I just interviewed Dr. Daniel Kraft this morning, who’s kind of a big deal because he heads up the whole medical side of Singularity University. Yes, that was a killer episode.
I know we all have this idea in our head of what a really good episode sounds like or we know that when we finish an interview, we’re like, there’s something about it that everything was firing on all cylinders. What are some of the criteria that you have so that when you finish an interview, you feel like, wow, that checked off all the boxes?
It’s an interesting question. I guess what I like to see in an episode is all of the wisdom and experience shining through, whether we can cover everything in an hour. These are long episodes. I usually do hour-long episodes. That’s a lot of stuff.
They could go on for hours and hours, because they’re subject matter experts. Like Dr. Daniel Kraft could go on and teach a seven-day workshop and still not be finished. It’s just mind blowing. I’m trying to just get a lot of value conveyed and have some actionable insights that people take, not just entertainment. There are plenty of podcasts that entertain. I want people to get off their butts and do something with the information. If all they do is passively listen, I failed them.
How are you measuring the extent to which listeners will take an action?
That’s hard. It’s tough to have these kinds of metrics. We don’t even know our subscriber numbers. It’s ridiculous. Someday, I’m imagining we’ll get that data, hopefully. But in the meantime, we just make do and we provide as much value as we can.
I go out of my way to provide things that distill insights out of the episode. It’s not just the shownotes. I have my team create a checklist for each episode, a checklist of action steps to take based on the interview. I don’t know of a lot of shows that do that.
I don’t think so. I can’t think of many that do. Does that tailor the types of questions you ask the guests because you have the checklist in mind?
No, not at all. I don’t even have prepared questions. I’ll have some general topics. With Dr. Kraft, I knew that we were talking about just diagnostics, different tools, apps, where things are heading, therapies, 3D printing of organs, and all that stuff. But I didn’t know which specific tools we would go into.
I didn’t know what directions we would go. The path will illuminate itself as you’re going on it. There are plenty of shows where you just have a set of seven questions, and that’s just what you do. I’m the antithesis of that. I believe in winging it.
To your credit, it’s a controlled winging it based on you having selected the right guest because you know your audience. You’re picking someone who you have an interest in speaking to. You’re engaged in the topic, so all those things together. There are some organizations there that allow you to have these in-depth hour-long conversations that at the end of the day do end up providing value for your listeners.
Yeah. I know I just got in the zone. It’s almost like a flow state. You can tell when I’m not in a flow state and I’m doing the interview versus in the flow state. They’re just much better episodes. Hopefully, most of the episodes are in the flow state. I think I do a pretty good job of that.
You’ve had some pretty big names on there. You’ve mentioned Dave Asprey and you’ve had Tim Ferriss on as well. Were any of those or is there someone else that I haven’t mentioned that was a bit of an intimidation factor in terms of the name?
I’ve never been intimidated by a guest by their stature, name recognition, or anything. I’ve had a lot of bestselling authors on. Between the two shows, Phil Town, he has two number one New York Times best selling books. He’s a big deal. Dave Asprey is a big deal, Harville Hendrix.
I guess Byron Katie would have been the one I was most star-struck by, because I’ve been a huge fan of hers for a long time. One thing I do that I think is unusual is it’s not just me extracting brilliance out of the guest.
I did an interview last week with Mark Dhamma. I let him use me as a guinea pig. He does hypnotherapy and stuff. He has this process of having you go through these five areas of life and score yourself on a 1-10 scale. He had me do it live on the show and I’m like, yeah, I’m game.
Then there’s this one area that’s the area of accomplishment. I’m like, yeah, you know what? I’m not hitting all cylinders there. In fact, I had another guest a couple of weeks ago. We talked about impostor syndrome, and I think I have that. I even wrote a Huffington Post article about it afterwards. I was so impacted by that conversation.
The adjunct of this comparative success syndrome is an adjunct to impostor syndrome, where you compare yourself to what you could have been. If I had stayed on my track of getting a PhD in biochemistry, I could have cured cancer or whatever, and I just went after the money instead. I have to deal with that.
One thing I do that I think is unusual is not just extracting brilliance out of the guest; I actually use the tools they created.
I’m like, boy, these things don’t come to the surface normally, but when I am open and vulnerable on a podcast episode with a world expert in an area, Byron Katie has eliminated suffering, essentially, for millions of people, literally millions of people with her process she calls The Work.
She did it to me on the episode. I was open in saying, well, here’s an area that is uncomfortable for me, let’s talk about my middle daughter who doesn’t speak to me currently and hasn’t for a number of months. That still brings me a lot of pain, and let’s use The Work on that. She’s like, great, let’s do it. And I did and on the episode. I think it really adds so much more value. It’s not just instructive, but it’s real.
People can relate and they can work to use that in their own lives. They can say like, okay, this isn’t just like textbook stuff. It sounds good in theory, but Stephan’s a real person and he’s got real problems like I do. He works through them using some of these tools that these guests have created.
When did you realize that that approach was something that was going to have more impact for the listeners? Because a lot of people are afraid to go down that path and they want to present the best possible face on the show.
As the host of the show, they want to have this image of themselves as, for lack of a better term, being in control. Was that something that you had in mind from the beginning? Was that something, as you started doing more episodes, you realized that that could have more of an impact?
It was definitely through the process of doing the episode, but it wasn’t specifically from an episode that I got this insight. It was from taking Kabbalah classes.
Orion, my fiance, is Israeli and Jewish. As a way to connect with her in a deeper way, to understand her culture and her religion, I started looking into Judaism classes and I decided that the Orthodox or conservative Judaism didn’t really resonate with me as much as Kabbalah did. I didn’t know a lot about it, but I’m a big self-help junkie, so it’s very self-healthy.
Oh, my goodness. I just really resonated with it. It just touched me, it touched my soul. We have gone through Kabbalah I, Kabbalah II, Kabbalah III, each of which are 10-week classes. Now we’re going back to Kabbalah I again because there’s still more value to be gotten from the earlier content.
It was all my idea, first of all, for us to go to Kabbalah classes. And then for us to repeat the whole series again. That was all my idea. One of the things that specifically relates to podcasting, and being vulnerable, and using this as a platform not to just show off my ego, but as a way to really genuinely help people in a vulnerable way, was the content in Kabbalah related to your ego.God is not a belief but an experience. - The Oneness Monk Click To Tweet
I don’t know if you’ve heard that Madonna is big into Kabbalah and Guy Ritchie as well. He created a movie called Revolver, which is kind of a cult classic. It’s based on a lot of Kabbalah terms and Kabbalah principles, including death of the ego.
When you are out there in the world doing good without concern for your ego, so much more light is revealed from your vessel. It’s incredible. This is tough for me, because I’m a guy who has written three books, who speaks at a lot of conferences, and writes a lot of articles. Clearly, it is significance-driven if I’m doing all that. I’m a bit of a big deal. Doing this vulnerability thing was a little bit of a stretch for me, but it felt so much more, like I was in my soul.
That’s a good place to be.
I love it. I’ve just changed a lot of stuff about how I interact with people, how I run my day. I start with a prayer in the morning and at night before I go to bed. I was agnostic most of my life, so a big, big difference.
I had this big spiritual awakening in India in 2012 that helped me to get connected with the fabric of the universe and creation. Before that, pretty much my whole life, I was agnostic, so a little different.
Yeah, there’s probably only a handful of folks that were studying biochemistry, then reading the teachings of the Kabbalah, I would imagine.
I don’t know about that. I think you’d be surprised.
Yeah. Nowadays, I think it’s a fair game. What’s fascinating is I had an interview earlier today and we were discussing Fibonacci spirals. It’s an interesting day when you go jump from Fibonacci spirals to the tree of life.
For me, I’m huge into all of this stuff. I’ve worked with plant medicines and I’ve had a deep, deep connection to spirit in the universe. None of this surprises me because I think it’s like a vortex that you generate.
When you run in that space, you just end up having conversations like this and connecting with people that are of the same mind. I think people that are around you can see that there’s something changing within you in terms of the way you perceive life and how you perceive others.
And these things are not mutually exclusive. They actually are very much synergistic with each other, science and spirituality. I just went to Dr. Daniel Amen to get my brain scan just because I heard him speak at a Brendon Burchard High Performance Academy seminar, yet another seminar, and what an amazing presentation. He’s just so brilliant.
I don’t know if you know who he is. He wrote Change Your Brain, Change Your Life, which is a big best selling book. I’m going to have him on my podcast, of course. I’ll be interviewing him in a couple of weeks.
What an incredible set of insights that when you get your brain scan, you can see, all right, here is what’s happening inside my head and here are my behaviors. If I’m stuck in a certain pattern or whatever and it can show up in your brain scan, in the blood flow.
Did you know that there’s a part of your brain called The God Box? When they stimulate that, like putting electrodes in if they have your skull opened or whatever, and they stimulate that part of the brain, you will have spiritual awakening–type experiences.
There’s a part of your brain that is wired for spiritual awakening.
Yeah. There’s a part of your brain that is wired for my spiritual awakening, essentially.
I imagine, when that part is, I think you said, activate or touched, depending on the person, they could have different experiences?
Yup. I don’t really have a lot of data around this. I remember hearing about it and I was very intrigued. But yeah, it just shows that there’s this connection between science and spirit. We are wired to be spiritual beings. It’s a lot of fun to go down this path and go down the rabbit hole.
Are you surprised to the extent with which you’ve become more and more interested in this topic the more you learn about it?
Not really. I guess I just get more, I don’t know what the word is, but I feel like I know myself more. It’s like I’m shedding the layers. In Kabbalah, these are called qliphoth, the shells that stopped the light from being revealed. I’m peeling these away.
Surprisingly, as I’m doing more podcast episodes, who would have thought? It’s a spiritual experience for me to do these podcast episodes. Some of them are just like, oh, that was good content. But some of them are like, wow, I revealed some light on that episode.
I bet you didn’t think when you were starting the podcasts that this is the direction you would be taking.
Oh, no. I just thought, this is good for my brand and good for getting content out there. It’s a great opportunity. But now I’m like, yeah, this is part of my soul calling.
That’s pretty exciting when it happens, though, isn’t it?
Oh, yeah. There’s a whole new pathway that has revealed itself, like I’m working on a self-help book. In fact, this Optimized Geek podcast came about because I wanted to do a self-help book. I have a ghostwriter who is helping me with the book, who has gotten some other best sellers, who has helped with some bestsellers. I did not want to just hand him over all these subject matter experts to interview.
That was the original plan. And then I’m thinking, that’s a terrible waste to have all these great interviews that are purely used in a printed book and then the audio is thrown away. That’s just my ghostwriter having the conversation. What? That’s a travesty.
Let’s get me on the interview, let’s record it, and use it not just for the book, but use it for a podcast episode. That’s how the Optimize Geek started and then I realized, you know what, I really need to do the Marketing Speak podcast too, because that’s my bread and butter. Now, two shows and both weekly, both an hour a piece. Yeah, it’s a lot of work.
I imagine the way that they’re progressing, the way they’re growing, and just the conversations you have with these guests that continue to impress and inspire you, make you feel that it’s worth it and that you are continuing to add value, otherwise, you wouldn’t continue.
I shed the stuff that’s not my gift.
Oh, absolutely. I’m in my gift. I want to shed the stuff that’s not my gift. The three Ds—delegate, delete, defer. Then the stuff that is in my gift, I want to do more of. Doing the podcast is in my gift, doing the audio editing, not my gift.
Creating the show notes, not in my gift. Transcript, not in my gift. Episode arts, social media, posts for Facebook, Twitter, and all that not. I guess that’s a skill I have, but not in my gift, though. It’s not what I’m here on this planet for.
It’s funny. I’m glad this is an audio-only episode because my cat’s been just basically laying on my keyboard the whole time. I’m worried that she’s going to disconnect the Skype connection. She really wants my attention.
She wants to be on the podcast.
When you went through that period where you had this transformation and you went to the Tony Robbins event, who from your family was the most surprised on what they were seeing in terms of what was happening to you?
They were all surprised. It was a particularly dark time in my life when I was just really unhappy. I was going through a divorce. I was just socially awkward. I didn’t have a date for the first 2½ years after separating from my wife at the time, so I needed something to give me not just skills, but just a whole mindset shift reboot. That’s where Tony Robbins came in. Also, I learned some stuff from Neil Strauss, from Brendon Burchard, and a bunch of other folks.
It’s primarily Tony. I even basically followed him around the world for three years. I signed up for his Platinum Partnership, which is a big expense. We went to India, Cabo, Whistler, Fiji, South Africa, Botswana, and Zambia. All over.
What was happening to you mentally and or spiritually as you were doing this? I get the impression that you’re like an all-or-nothing type of guy. When you find something and you feel like this is what works, you’re going to do the top level version of it, because I imagine that the message is resonating with you very strongly.
If I think it’s valuable, I’ll go all in.
I will go all in if I really like it. If I think it’s valuable, I’ll go all in. It was tough when I did this Tony Robbins thing for three years. You have to put your business on hold to some degree, because you’re following Tony around all over the world. A good half of your month each month is traveling to a Tony event or a Platinum trip or something.
It definitely took a toll on my business in some ways, because I had to get back and implement all the stuff I had learned. But the connections I made, the peer group I have now is out of this world. Some of my best friends are Platinum Partners. I’m not in it anymore. I haven’t been since 2013. These are lifelong friends. People who aren’t just successful, but who are really driven to contribute and to grow.
When did this desire to be someone who can contribute to society become something that was important to you?
In 2010, I guess. I sold my company. My agency was called Netconcepts in early 2010. I had the financial means to do the stuff like the Platinum Partnership, which is like six figures a year. I wanted to make a difference. I realized that I had resources now.
I didn’t really have that. I had many constraints, let’s put it that way. In my company, I did not have a majority stake after the divorce, so I wasn’t in control of the company. I had a board. I was one of five seats on the board. Just being rid of that and having the complete freedom to just go off and follow Tony around, go to other seminars, and all that as well, I just had this strong focus on contributing and growing.
In 2012, I think it was, I had donated a school to be built in Zambia. I joined Impact Network as a board member. It all came about because of an event I was at. It was in a mastermind. One of the guys I met there, Dan Sotera, a really cool guy, one of the founders of Yext. He had founded a nonprofit. They’re building schools in Zambia, operating them, had curriculum that they had created, and everything. I’m like, wow, that’s amazing.When you give without expecting anything in return, it colors the nature of your giving. Click To Tweet
I wanted to build an orphanage and I couldn’t figure out how to get past all the hurdles, the bribing of the government officials, and all that nonsense. I’m like, oh, I really should just go with somebody that has already figured that stuff out. It’s only like $25,000 to have a whole school built and operated for a year. That’s like less than the price of a car. If you were thinking of upgrading your car, why don’t you build a school instead?
It might have a bigger impact.
This aspect of you, this generosity, this giving nature, is this something that you felt has been in you since you were small or you were a child?
Certainly in all my adult life. I don’t know if I recognized it as a child, but the whole time I had been running Netconcepts, I’ve been focused on donating some of my and my staff’s time towards nonprofits. We had helped The Carter Center, for example.
The Carter Center does amazing things all over the world, like, essentially eradicating guinea worm disease in Africa and stuff. President Jimmy Carter, he just had such an impact on the world since his presidency. I had listened to an interview of him on Sky Radio and I’m like, wow, what an amazing man. I just essentially called them and said, hey, I’d love to help out. That was well over a decade ago, like 2003 or 2002, something like that.
I did that with the Foresight Institute. I just read a book called Nano! by Ed Regis about nanotechnology. In the book, they talked about Foresight Institute and what they’re doing to help with public policy and so forth with nanotechnology. I’m like, wow, what a great organization. I called them, spoke to the executive director, and said, “I just want to help you guys out, no charge.”
We built them a new website and did SEO for them, search engine optimization, for those of you who don’t know what SEO is. We helped them get higher rankings in Google. We did all that for free. We did a little bit of work later on on a paid basis. But the vast majority of the work that I had done for years had been pro bono until they got some grant money and they said, “oh, we should actually hire you and pay you something.” That’s in my DNA, I guess. I’m wired that way.
And you got to meet Jimmy Carter?
I didn’t, but my claim to fame there is that I got President Carter to blog.
Oh, you did? Okay.
He was the first ex-president to blog. My idea was, hey, you’re already doing trip reports in these different countries that you’re visiting. These were early days, so very few people were blogging back then. Why don’t you call these trip reports blog posts, and now you’re a blogger?
They were essentially blog posts. So they did it. They started a blog and started posting on his trips on what he was doing, people he was meeting, the projects they’re working on, and everything. He was blogging, and the media went crazy, like, oh, my God, even presidents are blogging now.
They wrote me this really nice testimonial. This was the best marketing initiative or online marketing initiative we’ve ever done. It’s all thanks to Stephan, and I got the testimonial on my website to prove it.
That’s a nice testimonial.
Another Kabbalistic idea is sharing, proactively or reactively. If you want a blessing and light, there must be no strings attached.
Yeah, pretty cool. But I didn’t go into it thinking that’s what I’m after. Another Kabbalistic idea is sharing. You can either do it proactively or reactively. Proactive sharing is where you don’t have any agenda. You’re not trying to get something out of it. Even if you give a bum on the street $5 and you’re waiting for their reaction, that is reactive sharing, that is not proactive.
If you want a blessing, if you want light, it just has to be no strings attached. If the guy spits in your face, totally fine. You are spreading light in the world. That’s what I did. I just went and offered my services. I didn’t have expectations of getting any reward out of it.
There were cases where I did do some reactive sharing. I “donated” an SEO audit to Target in exchange for a testimonial. To have the Target brand on my website as a client was pretty amazing back in the day. That was reactive sharing.
From a business perspective, sometimes, you want to do things that are going to help your business grow. But I think from a personal perspective, the proactive sharing is just more in line with, like you said, the teachings that you’ve been learning. I think you just feel it. When you give without expecting anything in return, it colors the nature of your giving.
Yeah, I agree.
Can you talk a little bit about the awakening that you had in India in 2012?
Sure. This is what happened. I was on a Tony Robbins Platinum trip. We got oneness blessings from oneness monks. Oneness is non-denominational. It started in India. It’s like the sugar that you can add to your tea or you can add to your coffee.
It works if you’re a Christian or Muslim, you’re a Hindu, Buddhist, whatever. These oneness monks were giving us Deekshas, which are blessings. They put their hands on your forehead or on your head and pass divine grace into you. I’m like, okay, yup, sounds good.
I’ll take that.
Yeah, I’m game. Sure. I was agnostic, so I’m like, okay, that’s fine. That’s not that I disbelieve, it’s just that I’m skeptical. I had an awakening. It touched The God Box. It was incredible.
Everything was surreal. It was like I was viewing everything in technicolor. The color of the grass had never been so green in my whole life, like cartoon type green. It was amazing. Everything was glowing and beautiful.Too many people have this vague goal of success, but behind that, there has to be a why. Click To Tweet
I felt just this immense amount of love just pouring over me, coming out of me, and going inside. I was in a different world. It was amazing. The monks say that God is not a belief but an experience. It makes sense, right?
Of course, yeah.
I got that intellectually when they said it. I had gotten Deeksha blessings before at other Tony events because he’s big into oneness. At each Date With Destiny, he’ll have a oneness blessing thing on one of the evenings. I don’t know if you saw the new documentary.
We were just talking about it in the other interview. It just came out a few days ago, from what I understand.
Yeah. it just came out. Yeah, I’m not your guru. It’s all about the Date With Destiny experience, which is where I met Orion. Incredible event. I met the love of my life at Date With Destiny.
That just sounds too perfect.
It does, doesn’t it? Life happens for you, not to you. Tony Robbins says this, and I believe it. I had this amazing experience in India, and now I’m in the vortex. I am receiving so many blessings, and just all these miracles start happening. I know that I can start asking for miracles.
The day that I met Orion, that morning, I was working on my poster board for Date With Destiny. You’ve probably seen in the movie that people are doing their posters and figuring out what their mission statement is, their power virtues, relationship, vision, and all that. I was writing up my relationship vision.
As I did that, I was praying. I connected to the Divine. I’m praying for her to show up right away. I remember specifically asking. You get what you asked for. If you just say, well, someday I would love for the love of my life to show up, if you ask for it right away, you’ll get right away. If you just came in open-ended, well, who knows?
I specifically asked for it right away and then 12 hours later, we were introduced by a mutual friend. The event had just finished. It was all over and it was in the lobby of the hotel. My friend calls me over and introduces the two of us.
An hour later, a friend of mine, now a friend of ours, took a photo from above. It looked like we had been together for a decade or something. We had only met an hour earlier. Eighteen hours later, we said I love you to each other. Nine days later, I proposed to her in a hot air balloon in Vegas, where she was a captive audience.
That’s probably the best place to propose. Like, well, you have nowhere else to go, so make sure you answer this in a way that’s best for both of us.
The irony of all that is she said no. She said, I’m not ready.
Really? That’s so funny.
Yeah, and boy, that was the most awkward 20 minutes of all time waiting for that darn balloon to land. It made sense, because I had thrown all logic out the window. I’m like, this is my soulmate. I had actually done a Deeksha. I was a blessing giver. I had learned how to do that in India.
I’d given her a blessing, because no one had touched her head during that evening at Date With Destiny. The mutual friend who introduced us, had given Deeksha to her. I had offered to give a Deeksha to her 15 minutes after we met or whatever. What you do is you connect to the divine. The more that you pray for them, the more that you want divine grace for that person. The more blessing, the more grace flows through you into that person.
I was praying for her as if she was my soulmate, and I knew. When I said I love you 18 hours after we met, and I proposed to her nine days later, and all that, I knew, because 10 minutes-15 minutes, whatever it was after we met, I connected. I prayed for her like, oh, wow, she’s the one. Now we’re finally getting married. Nine months later, I re-proposed and then she said yes, and now we’re going to get married in Costa Rica in the Osa Peninsula.
Can you tell me a little bit about what that feels like when you originally were introduced to her? I’m interested in that very rapid timeline, but I’m also interested in what is going through you in terms of an affirmation or a realization of something you requested earlier in the day manifesting itself in physical form right in front of your eyes.
Okay. What is your question here?
What is going through your mind at that point in time?You missed the point if you're trying to change the world and don't change yourself. Click To Tweet
I don’t think that there’s anything specific. It’s just this idea of being in a flow state. You’re just plugged in. I think that I’ve just been more and more like that ever since I had that spiritual experience in India. I went back to India a couple of months later.
Orion and I both went directly to Oneness University and experienced other amazing connections to the divine. We did this chanting for 53 minutes, nonstop existence, consciousness, bliss. “I’m existence, consciousness, bliss, I’m existence, consciousness, bliss,” over and over and over again for 49 or 53 minutes, nonstop. I forget the magical number was.
Surprisingly, both of us had profound experiences from that. Orion had an out-of-body experience from that. It just sounds so simple. Maybe it was the energy of being in this temple, with the monks there and everything. Boy, it was amazing. I just get in the zone or get into the vortex, to use Abraham Hicks’ terminology. There are so many amazing people.
Yeah, I’m a fan.
And Amma, the hugging saint. I got my mantra from Amma. I’m a junkie and spiritual.
I can see that. It’s fascinating because I did not know that about you. It just brings a warm smile to my face to see the impact that all these experiences have had in your life and will now color how you live the rest of your life.
Yup, and I have a big mission now that’s not just about me. A lot of it needs to be about me in terms of the buck stops with you. If you’re trying to change the world and you don’t change yourself, you missed the point. But then, it’s not about me from an ego standpoint. I want to make a huge impact for the world.
My next year goal is to be on Good Morning America, The Today Show with the New York Times best selling book called The Optimized Geek. That’s what I’m working on. It’s so that I can change millions of lives and not just the number of listeners I have on my show, but to have an on-mass impact.
Apparently, you’re pretty good at manifesting your intentions.
Work with your intentions with effort plus grace.
I’m working on it. It’s not just effort. It’s effort plus grace. I recently went through a training on how to get on TV. I’m definitely learning the skills I’ve gotten on TV seven times in the last four months. You just work your way up. It’s a science. It’s something that you can reverse engineer. I think it’s very doable to get on Good Morning America or The Today Show.
I’m sure we’ll be referring back to this episode when you pull it off. He did say on that episode of Podcast Junkies that he was going to do that, and he did it in probably less time than you probably think it’s going to happen. I think it just speaks to the power of being very clear about what you want in your life.
I think too many people have this vague goal of, I want to be successful or I want to be on TV, and then behind that, there has to be an intention of why. In your case, it seems like you want to do it because of the experiences you have and have had. You want to bring more love, awareness, and presence into the world. That’s really a really positive intention that I think the universe will have to stand up and take notice of and respond accordingly.
That sounds great.
In addition to what you’re planning with the book and being in Good Morning America, as you think about the scope of your life and how it’s dramatically changed, people like to use the word legacy. What else is on the roadmap for Stephan in terms of what’s left for you to do? Where is there left for you to go that you haven’t been yet?
I guess making amends to all the people that I’ve hurt through in my lifetime. That’s something that never really occurred to me until recently from just the Kabbalah classes. I’ve hurt people along the way. I just said unkind things or treated people in a way that was not caring or compassionate. I need to make amends or at least acknowledge that with that person. We all hurt people. We all do things, say things that are unkind, selfish, or whatever.
I read recently that people have fear of death because of unfinished business. You won’t have fear of death if you don’t have massive amounts of unfinished business. A lot of the unfinished business is because we lie, we say hurtful things, we do hurtful things, and we don’t make good or just acknowledge that with the person. We’re too afraid to show up powerfully in the world because it’s too risky, I guess, or whatever the reason.
And then so vulnerable.
Yeah. I’m being vulnerable here. Actually, I started podcasting in 2007. I gave it up for many years. I did it for less than a year and I’m like, yeah, I think I’m too early. Not really a good use of my time.
If you would have had this interview with me eight months ago, probably would have been a pretty different interview, I still would have had a lot of the spiritual experiences to share with you and stuff. I’ve really come a long way even in the last eight months. Who knows what the next eight months will have?
We might have to have you back just to see you’re capable of some pretty big transformations in a short period of time. That’s interesting. What do you think is the one most misunderstood thing about you?
I get put in a box as an SEO geek. I’m so much more than that. I think I’m starting to show that with the TV appearances and the podcast, that’s a self-help podcast. Even just with my other podcast show, Marketing Speak, showing that my skills go way beyond SEO into conversion, analytics, Facebook, and everything else. I guess it’s that putting me in a box thing.
It brings us to the limelight that we judge a lot in our life because we tend to focus on and feel the pain about most of the things we dissociate about ourselves.
I think that I also put other people in a box, too. I think we all judge. It brings to the limelight for me that I’m judging a lot in my life, because what we tend to focus on and feel the pain about most of the things that we dissociate about ourselves.
If somebody really hates being called a liar or whatever, they’re probably being disingenuous in their lives or whatever. If something bothers you about a person, like think about somebody that really bothers you. What is it about that person that really bothers you?
Are you asking me?
Someone who’s not sincere in their intentions.
Okay. When have you not been sincere in your intentions?
I’m sure I can think of a couple pretty recent experiences.
There are people that just get under my skin and I had to think about, why is it them and not somebody else? And a different behavior? What is it about those behaviors? Because those behaviors get under my skin, but they don’t get under Orion’s skin.
There are other things that get under Orion’s skin that don’t bother me at all. People she just really dislikes, and I just don’t care about them. They don’t bother me. It doesn’t really affect me. It’s the things that we most dissociate or dislike about ourselves that we’re not owning. It’s kind of interesting.
Very interesting. What have you changed your mind about recently?
What have I changed my mind about? I don’t know.
It seems like over the course of your life, there’s been a lot of changes, I would think, in the way you previously thought.
Yeah, but not last week, today, or whatever. If you look at how I viewed giving back, even a year ago, if you would ask me about giving back and be like, well, I give back a lot, I donate all my time and do these wonderful things for Carter Center, blah-blah-blah, what I wasn’t being honest with myself about as well actually, I’m stingy when it comes to money. I’m very giving when it comes to my time, but I’m not nearly as generous with my cash.
All growth happens outside your comfort zone, as they say. I’m stretching myself like, oh, it really hurts to give this $10 bill to this homeless guy, or this really hurts writing this big check or whatever. Occasionally, I do it, but it really hurts. I’m doing more of it now. It starts to hurt less, but it still hurts. I know that I’m revealing light because I’m doing something that’s outside my comfort zone.
That’s where the growth happens.
Yeah. One thing that you can test that’s a Kabbalistic principle, that is one of the very few things you can test and see that, yup, it actually works, is if you give 10% of your income, tithing, if you give it to organizations that will continue to spread the light, not like you give it to a homeless person who’s going to use it for themselves and themselves alone, but organizations that will continue to spread that energy, you will get more than that in return not just intangibly, but tangibly.
I wrote a big check out recently and I got new clients, like a lot of new clients in a row, like three, which is a lot for me. These are consulting clients. I got them in very short succession after I wrote a couple of reasonably big-sized checks, ones that made me smart.
I’m a firm believer in that. For me, the explanation is you have to continuously give in to the flow. If you do anything to interrupt the flow, everything in the universe, everything in nature, works based on that principle. The extent that you can become part of it, I think, whatever you want more of in life, you have to give. If you want more love, give more love.
To your example, you want more money, give more money without the intention of, where’s it going to come back, as you touched upon earlier, I think, unconditionally and unselfishly for it to have the best and most impactful effect.
An hour plus. This is fun. I love that I had no idea where this was going. I absolutely love where it ended up.
Podcasting, for me, as I’ve noticed in recent interviews, is the small impetus for the conversation starter. But at the end of the day, every host has got a story. A lot of times, it doesn’t have to do with podcasting. There’s something deeper going on that is driving you that I couldn’t have demonstrated more clearly than in today’s conversation with you.
I appreciate you, Stephan, taking the time to come on and more importantly, being open. It seems like this is the journey that you’re on. I really appreciate the fact that you’ve been just willing to share everything that’s been happening to you and demonstrating through your actions the impact that it had in your life.
Every opportunity is a gift.
I’ve enjoyed having the opportunity to do it. Like I said, it’s not always been easy. It’s getting easier. I find that I get more blessings from the universe the more I’m vulnerable and the more I’m out there just to proactively share. Every opportunity is a gift.
Very cool. Where’s the best place for folks to track you down?
It’s stephanspencer.com. That has links to both of my podcast shows, which are Marketing Speak, which is at marketingspeak.com and Optimized Geek, which is at optimizedgeek.com (Get Yourself Optimized, getyourselfoptimized.com). Especially if they want information on SEO and online marketing, how to get to the top of Google, how to get more leads, and just a ton of resources on that website, on that. But if you’re into the self-help stuff, then definitely check out Optimized Geek.
Given now that everyone knows that Orion is part of your life, maybe you should give her a quick plug on.
Thanks again for your time. I hope you have a fantastic day.
Thank you, and you as well.
I think that you might have had an idea of what the episode was going to be like or the interview is going to be like when I was talking about all of Stephan’s accolades. At the beginning, I alluded to it that it was going to be different. For me, it was just really fascinating about the journey that he’s been on, this interest he had, and just completely transforming his life, which he did. Literally, a total 180.
As I’ve gotten to know him over the past year, and have now chatted with him a couple of times, and we’ve hung out a couple of times in person, I just like him more and more. I just think he’s really a genuine soul.
That whole idea of the awakening that he had in India in 2012, it’s just like a pivotal moment for him. It set him on this completely different path. I wonder how many of you guys have had something similar happen. I’d be interested in those stories. It feels like that’s the theme for today, like transformation.
That’s really what happened with Stephan. It’s been something that’s been interesting to hear about. I imagine, if you spend a bit more time with him, it would be interesting to ask him about it. If you do, if you see him at a conference—we’re fellow podcasters, we all hang in the same circles—tell him you heard the episode here and you were just fascinated by the story that he was telling. I think he’d really appreciate that.
I mentioned last week that I’ve got a new project in the works, and it’s called PodFunnel. It was really born out of scratching my own itch. I know that there are all these different ways that we can share our episodes. It’s not necessarily that easy, and it takes time.
Let me know if this is something that relates to you or this is something that resonates with you. I’ve been in my office and my wife comes home. I know that I’m not done with my podcasting tasks. I feel like, oh, I just need one more hour and then it leads into dinner. Or it’s the weekend and it’s like, oh, I just want to wrap up a couple intros, get this recorded, or share it on a couple more sites.
I thought, man, if I could do something that could make podcasters’ lives just a little bit easier, to save them maybe if not days, then hours with their distribution plan, I should do that, because it’s helping me and I want to share what I’ve learned with others.
I started putting pieces together. I use it internally for some clients. It’s in the beginning stages. I don’t have a landing page just for this conversation, but I thought you might want to check it out. It’s podfunnel.com. Sign up to request an invite, and let me know if you’d be interested.
I’m putting together some pioneers that are going to get lifetime access to it for a greatly reduced price, lifetime. Literally you sign up, pay once, and that’s it. You have it forever for the life of your podcast. If you’re serious about podcasting, and you’re looking to make an investment in something that could potentially save you a bunch of headaches, and maybe even put you in good standing with your spouse and save you some time to spend with your family because that’s important, then check it out.
We are a proud member of Podcastica. Check out the great shows there. I’m really happy with what’s going on. We’ve got Game of Thrones and The Walking Dead coming up in the fall. I’m confused now. The Walking Dead’s coming up and then Game of Thrones, I think, is 2017. Anyway, if you need to get your amazing TV show fixed, then check out those shows and a couple of others that we’ve got in the mix there.
Thanks again to Cedar & Soil. Check out cedarsoil.com for some fantastic music bass producing. He did the intro and outro for me 2½ years ago. I think he’s surprised I would be podcasting this long and talking about it and talking about him. He’s just a great guy. His name is George Abi-Hanna. A fantastic musician, by the way, so check out his music.
Last week, I asked people to check out the show or to connect with the show via SpeakPipe. If you go on the site, by now, it should say something different before it says send voicemail. I think the cool thing that it should say and probably says now is give me a shout out. That sounds like a good one. Anyway, check it out. It’s the banner on the right hand side of the page, send me a shout out, whatever it says.
I’m going to continue that this week. I want to hear your voices. I want to hear what you’re thinking, what you’re feeling if you’re digging the episodes. If you’d like this specific episode, let me know. If you don’t know who I am and you just want to say, who are you and why are you asking me to call you? Then do that as well. I want to start playing some of these on the air and I’d love to just hear your feedback. That’d be a fantastic thing.
That’s it, just one call to action this week. Thanks for sticking this far. The retention hashtag is search Stephan because he’s an SEO genius, so #searchstephan and then tag him. His Twitter account is @sspencer and mine is @podcast_junkies, but you knew that already. Go do the social thing and tell all the people in the world you can about Podcast Junkies.
Next week, we’ve got more interesting people we speak to. I need to look up who they’re going to be. I’ve got the schedule laid out, so you’re going to have to actually sit with me as I click through this list, because I want to make sure I’m talking about the right person.
Yes, I thought it was. I knew it was. I didn’t know, but I thought it was. It was Ellory Wells. Oh, just amazing. We connected at Podcast Movement. Again, someone I’ve known for like three years and I’m like, man, we’re going to talk and he did not disappoint. We had a great conversation.
Ellory Wells. The conversation is a mouthful as well. Thank you. Love you, guys. Have a fantastic week. Tell folks about the show. Remember, SpeakPipe to me. Let me know. I want to hear your voices. Have a great day.
Get Yourself Optimized
Change Your Brain, Change Your Life
The Art of SEO
Miss Jaiya – previous episode
Byron Katie – previous episode
Dave Asprey – previous episode
Dr. Daniel Amen – previous episode
Dr. Daniel Kraft – previous episode
Jay Abraham – previous episode
Mark Dhamma – previous episode
Phil Town – previous episode
Tim Ferriss – previous episode
Dave Asprey – MS previous episode
Jay Abraham – MS previous episode
Taki Moore – MS previous episode
Tim Ferriss – MS previous episode
Dr. Daniel Amen
Dr. Daniel Kraft
Date With Destiny
Good Morning America
High Performance Academy
The Carter Center
Shiny Object Syndrome
The God Box
Fibonacci Sequence in Nature
Guinea Worm Disease Eradication: Countdown to Zero (Carter Center)
Your Checklist of Actions to Take
- Experience God and the divine. Put myself in proximity to these extraordinary experiences to experience God and the divine oneness. Knowing that there’s something so much bigger than I can imagine will change how I show up in the world.
- Find a compelling reason to change. Why do I want to make this change? The stronger the “why,” the greater my motivation to change.
- Surrender to the Creator. The act of surrender allows the Creator to work through me.
- Trust the Creator and divine timing. Have faith and don’t question events around me. The universe always has my best interests at heart. Even though it doesn’t give me what I want every time, it will always ensure that I have what I need.
- Continue to live in this world with an open heart and mind about what is beyond my perception. The universe is vast, and the possibilities are endless.
- Treat every moment as a learning opportunity. I am on Earth to learn and grow — not escape.
- Dwell in a place of positivity and certainty. When I am positive and certain that I am going to make it in life, I will.
- Shake things up. Wake up and change my life by freeing myself from limiting beliefs.
- Nourish my spirit as I find a belief that will transform me into a more enlightened human.
- Don’t be afraid of death. If there’s no death, how do I appreciate life? How do I treat it? It’s a precious gift and every day matters.
How Optimized Are You?TAKE THE TEST
LOVED THIS EPISODE
Please consider leaving me a review with Apple, Google or Spotify! It'll help folks discover this show and hopefully we can change more lives!Rate and Review