May 20, 2021

Tom Bilyeu’s Comeback Story - The Only Belief That Matters

Tom Bilyeu’s Comeback Story - The Only Belief That Matters

Tom Bilyeu, founder of Quest Nutrition and Impact Theory, delivers an incredible message of transformation and power. Hear Tom’s story of how his dream of becoming a filmmaker fell apart and how he lost his ambition to achieve in life until he had a...

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Tom Bilyeu, founder of Quest Nutrition and Impact Theory, delivers an incredible message of transformation and power. Hear Tom’s story of how his dream of becoming a filmmaker fell apart and how he lost his ambition to achieve in life until he had a life changing realization, and discovered his step-by-step formula for fulfillment and success in life.

  • Tom Bilyeu’s life growing up was right in between blue collar and white collar life. He didn’t grow up poor, but did learn the frustration of having to earn the money to buy the things he wanted when he was young. He was diagnosed with ADHD but his mother refused to medicate him for it, which is something Tom is very grateful for. His childhood shaped his work ethic and cultivated who he is today.
  • Tom made himself two promises as a child. One he hasn’t managed to keep and one he’s kept very closely. The first was never doing anything that made him nervous, the second was not letting other people tell him what to do, and as an entrepreneur he’s done well with that one.
  • Tom has recently started examining just why he is so driven in life. His father had a deep love for cars when Tom was growing up, but Tom always hated the hobby. This led him to wonder if his father could love him if he hated his father’s greatest passion. This anxiety may have led to Tom being so driven to achieve.
  • As he grew into his adult life, Tom began experiencing a recurring nightmare of being trapped in a loveless marriage. This was probably due to subconsciously picking up the distance between his parents when he was younger.
  • Tom attributes Stephen King as being his first real teacher because King’s books taught him to read. Reading has been the foundation for Tom’s success. His father gave Tom a copy of The Gunslinger when he was young and twenty years later, it still resonates.
  • Tom now spends an average of 2.5 hours every day learning or reading, and believes that is what makes the difference.
  • Tom’s early 20s were difficult. Tom went to film school before YouTube and smartphones were prevalent, and that’s when he realized that he didn’t have talent as a filmmaker. Despite his high ambitions, Tom felt like he was at a dead end and found himself selling video games with no real opportunities worth pursuing.
  • A major turning point was when Tom asked his girlfriend's father for her hand in marriage and he said no. The reason he didn’t want Tom to marry his daughter is that he accurately identified that he didn’t have the drive to see his ambitions through. Tom was lost, scared, frustrated, and hopeless with no idea what to do.
  • That shame got Tom moving, which is when he became somewhat controversial. Shame can be a powerful motivator if you don’t let it break you. He started making changes to his life, one small step at a time.
  • As a kid, Tom was excited for the future and all the possibilities before him. As a young adult, the reality of being broke and less talented than he thought brought that excitement crashing down hard. The first big narrative shift in his life happened when he realized that he was telling himself that he wasn’t smart enough to succeed in the way he wanted.
  • Because of brain plasticity, he began to embrace the word “yet”. Buying into brain plasticity, which Tom refers to as the only belief that matters, changed his life.
  • If you invest your time and energy into a skill set, you will get better at it.
  • Tom is grateful for his wife more than anything else. Relationships are a compromise and you will make sacrifices when you’re in them, but if you get it right, it’s incredible. The greatest gift that life has to offer is a shared experience.
  • Tom pursued the typical dream of getting rich when he was younger, particularly fast cars, big houses, and nice things. After about 8 years of really pushing, Tom was worth two million dollars on paper and realized that he hated his life. Money is very powerful, but it can’t change the way you feel about yourself.
  • You’re living in a virtual environment created by your brain and the only thing that is actually real for you is how you feel. This realization led to Tom pursuing experiences that made him feel alive over everything else.
  • People usually ask “What would you do if you couldn’t fail?”, but that’s the wrong question. Tom started asking himself “What would I do and love, even if I were failing?”
  • There are certain things that are true about humans. We seek status and we are social creatures. If you don’t contribute to the group you will feel bad about yourself and you won’t feel connected or fulfilled.
  • Fulfillment, as a formula, works like this: You have to work hard because part of your brain insists that you earn what you have. You should develop a set of skills that are unique to you based on something that you care about, then leverage that skill set to serve you and other people. If it only serves yourself or other people but not both, it won’t work.
  • The punchline of life is not success, fame, or notoriety. It is entirely how you feel about yourself when you’re by yourself.
  • It doesn’t matter who you are today, it only matters who you want to become and the price you are willing to pay to get there.
  • Everything in life is a process. Find something that you find interesting, the thing that gives you more energy than it takes away. Don’t expect it to feel like you are saving the world, but if you find yourself unable to stick to it more than a few times, you may just not be resilient enough to push through the fact that even passion has an overhead.
  • When you find the thing that holds your attention and is worth pushing through, start telling other people about it in an embodied way. You’re having a biological experience, and embodying a feeling with excitement and energy will tell your brain that this thing matters. Your brain will justify whatever energy level you bring to the table.
  • Treat your desire like a process. Tell yourself and other people what it is you're fighting for, and you’ll end up in a self-reinforcing loop where the harder you work, the better you get, and the better you get, the better you are able to serve yourself and other people.
  • We are wired to do something that matters.


Mentioned in this Episode:

Tom BilyeuProfile Photo

Tom Bilyeu

Filmmaker and Entrepreneur

Tom Bilyeu is a filmmaker and serial entrepreneur who chased money HARD for nearly a decade and came up emotionally bankrupt. ... To that end, he and his partners sold their technology company and founded Quest Nutrition -a company predicated not on money, but rather on creating value for people.