100 episodes

The Aww Shift Podcast was created specifically to focus on the critical area of any success or failure in life. Our identity. Identities don’t change in life, but they do make shifts that lead to good or bad endings.

There are two pivotal types of moments that shift everything in life. Moments that make us say, “Aww shift, this is awesome” or “Aww shift, this horrible.” Either moment is followed by major shifts in our lives that are hard to navigate alone. Bottom line is, we have to deal with them whether we want to or not. My passion is to share stories, insights, and ideas on how to handle these “Aww Shift” moments in life like a pro.

Having grown up in foster care and enduring countless “Aww Shift” moments on the road to the NFL and eventually becoming a 7 figure serial entrepreneur, Anthony now teaches others how make “shift” happen in life and business through his coaching programs and speeches.

Each weekly podcast episode is filled with off the cuff ideas, strategies, action steps, and case studies from Anthony or his guest with one goal in mind. Take you to and through your next “Aww Shift” moment with purpose and power.

It’s time to take “shift” seriously, stop the overwhelm and uncertainty, and make “shift” happen in The Aww Shift Podcast.

Aww Shift Anthony Trucks

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The Aww Shift Podcast was created specifically to focus on the critical area of any success or failure in life. Our identity. Identities don’t change in life, but they do make shifts that lead to good or bad endings.

There are two pivotal types of moments that shift everything in life. Moments that make us say, “Aww shift, this is awesome” or “Aww shift, this horrible.” Either moment is followed by major shifts in our lives that are hard to navigate alone. Bottom line is, we have to deal with them whether we want to or not. My passion is to share stories, insights, and ideas on how to handle these “Aww Shift” moments in life like a pro.

Having grown up in foster care and enduring countless “Aww Shift” moments on the road to the NFL and eventually becoming a 7 figure serial entrepreneur, Anthony now teaches others how make “shift” happen in life and business through his coaching programs and speeches.

Each weekly podcast episode is filled with off the cuff ideas, strategies, action steps, and case studies from Anthony or his guest with one goal in mind. Take you to and through your next “Aww Shift” moment with purpose and power.

It’s time to take “shift” seriously, stop the overwhelm and uncertainty, and make “shift” happen in The Aww Shift Podcast.

    How to Equip Yourself to And Others to Achieve Success and Make an Impact with Fran Maier

    How to Equip Yourself to And Others to Achieve Success and Make an Impact with Fran Maier

    In today's episode, our guest is Fran Maier. She is a serial entrepreneur, investor, and fundraiser responsible for five successful business ventures. She's also a former co-founder of Match.com and the founder of a new company called Baby Quip. She has gone through a journey of world-changing businesses, so if you want to create a great business idea and do things differently, this episode is for you.
    [2:05] Why should I listen to you? 
    You should listen to me because I am a fun conversationalist, I’d probably ask you what you’re up to and eventually get around to introducing myself as the CEO of Baby Quip and the services we render as a startup business. 
    [3:10] If you were to break down baby quip in its basics, what would it be? 
    Baby Quip is the largest baby gear rental and delivery service in the United States, Canada, Mexico, and Australia. We are the Airbnb of baby care, and we have over 1400 people (mostly moms) who own baby gear, and they are the ones who deliver it to families who are traveling to their local area. This isn’t moms renting their extra cribs, strollers, or seats. Most of these moms are building a real inventory of strollers, car seats, cribs, toys, baby monitors, and all kinds of other things. Because of the bombs, they get a lot of gratification from serving other families who are trying to have a good vacation. Baby quip is the one who connects the parents to the providers and parents can choose among providers their destination. 
    [5:22] How long has Baby Quip been around? 
    We launched it in May 2016. I finished my fourth startup sometime in 2012, and between 2012 and 2016, I got on the Airbnb craze, so I bought a house in San Francisco and was renting rooms on the top floor of my house. Afterward, I went to Santa Fe, where my mom was at the time, bought a couple of vacation rentals there, and started to think about how travel is changing. I didn't have a 9 to 5 job; instead, I was running properties and had a gig job. Then, I met somebody in Santa Fe who was doing the baby rental business, and we connected and joined forces in May. We launched pretty much immediately on the first platform. Almost seven years later, we survived the pandemic on Shark Tank on March 6, 2020. We were expecting our business to just take off, and then the pandemic came, but we are still standing and stronger than ever. 
    [7:00] What was the aww shift moment? 
    I had already been an Airbnb host, and I knew I did not want to store, clean, or provide the range that I saw families traveling with. I had a few families bring babies, and there was no way I wanted to do this. So when I saw this idea of baby gear rentals, the first thing I tried to find out was if anybody was into the business, and all I found were some small regional players. So I saw that nobody had the intention to build a national brand. When I saw the ideal vision for baby quip, I knew we needed to create trust because we are dealing with kids and babies. I also looked into liability insurance. Every piece of inventory was aimed at the baby. It also requires us to get background checks on all the quality providers, and we have a whole lot of things that we call trust and safety that give our providers, customers, and parents a piece of mind. We train our quality providers on cleanliness, safety, hospitality, and social media. That’s how we’ve done it, and we are still the only national brand that is sold to babies all over the world. 
    [12:39] How would you navigate the next few steps to getting a life? 
    I think it’s surprising that many people don’t necessarily go through the steps. One is what problem you’re solving or trying to solve. Then, who is your target market? You need to understand to whom you’re selling this solution. You’ve got to refine it. Okay, there is a target, there is a problem. What is one aspect of the solution? What are the unique benefits that you can bring? Of course, you have to think about how

    • 34 min
    Living an impactful life after the NFL with Lorenzo Alexander

    Living an impactful life after the NFL with Lorenzo Alexander

    In today’s episode, our guest is Lorenzo Alexander. He is a former American football linebacker who played in the NFL for 15 seasons playing the majority with the Washington Redskins. He played college football for the University of California and was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Carolina Panthers in 2005.
    [4:25] What are the things you’ve found beneficial to your life as an athlete that you wish non-athletes would experience?
    Sports are like simulated adversity that you experience every day. You either have success or failure and then you find out how you can grow in those moments. How do you get better? How do you become a better version of yourself? Human nature is to be in a place of comfort. We all want to find an easy flow. But we really don’t grow in that because the human condition is also to be complacent in many ways, and if you’re not pushed or challenged, you kind of just stay the same and let people pass you by. 
    So, I wish more people would play sports, engage, and get into a space that is going to stimulate adversity that they can learn from and then apply to who they are and the people that they impact on that day based on agreement. 
    [7:25] What’s the easiest, stress-free path to something? 
    I think we have the same mental health issues when it comes to sports and culture in general. We have the perspective that men don’t cry, and we shouldn’t tell our sons that we love them. But I think there needs to be a little bit of balance. We should be able to acknowledge our feelings and build mental toughness. There are a lot of different things out there that you can do to create balance in your life. But we are different, and that is why you have to know the loudest voices that you hear often. To be effective, we must strike a balance somewhere in the middle. If you are always in a state of crisis and you just try to chill out, beat yourself up, and not practice self-care, you are not doing anything. So building the skill set that you need in that space is really important. 
    [12:30] Can you walk us through the experience you had as a kid that led you to this point? 
    I went to St. Mary’s High School, did well in school, was one of the top players in the country, and eventually decided to go to Cal Berkeley. So one of the things my parents and uncle always instilled in me was having a plan B. I was taught that I could do multiple things at the same time. I always had my identity because I was a good student. I was a good football player who was ready to serve, and they created this structure for me that I was just participating in. I didn’t quite understand it at the time, but when I look back at it, I realize why I am here today. I’m passionate about certain things because of the individuals that I've had in my life. Much of the work done, primarily by my uncle Steve and mother, benefited me greatly. 
    My uncle had a family of his own and was married, but he still found time to sacrifice and serve not only his family but also to ensure that I had the structure I needed in addition to what my mother provided. I have people who are more talented than I am but didn’t have the structure and support that I had, so they ended up taking different routes. I had a great example of what that was supposed to look like and followed it as closely as I could. 
    [25:10] Can you share with people your day-to-day activities and where you see yourself in the next three to five years? 
    Well, the big thing, as you just mentioned, was finishing up my Master’s program at Grand Canyon University. One of the things that I was also blessed to learn was psychology, with an emphasis on life coaching. I was taught a growth mindset, and this is not something that I learned in grad school from an academic perspective, but something that I heard from Sean McDermott and how he applied it to football. 
    Everybody, I think, is inherently given certain skills and is gifted at certain levels, and

    • 44 min
    The Power Of Potential with Tom D’Eri

    The Power Of Potential with Tom D’Eri

    In today’s episode, our guest is Thomas D'Eri. He is an expert in autism employment through his experience as the founder and COO of Rising Tide Car Wash, a social enterprise that employs more than 80 individuals with autism. 
    He is also a recognized thought leader in the autism employment field and a 2019 Forbes 30 Under 30 list-maker in social entrepreneurship. Tom regularly speaks at Fortune 500 companies, international conferences, leadership development programs, and universities. 
    [3:16] Why should I listen to you? 
    I have the type of personality that is looking to learn much more than to tell people what to do. And if I were to talk to you in a coffee shop, I can promise you that I’d be asking many more questions than speaking. 
    [4:45] Where did you develop the desire to be curious about other people? 
    A lot of experiences come to mind, but the one that comes to mind most frequently is my experience with my brother, Andrew. Andrew has autism, and that is why we founded our business, Rising Tide Car Wash. Growing up with him and getting to know other people, I learned that people have all different types of struggles that you may not see on the surface. I think that has always been interesting to me, and it has also made me empathetic. 
    [7:20] Tell me how the carwash came to be. 
    My father, John Dre, and I founded the business in 2013. At this point, Andrew was turning 22. And at that point, in the autism community that means you are kind of out of the school district, out of the support system that you have through your childhood. We knew we had to act for a couple of years, but before then we had been doing research and testing different ideas to see what would work best for Andrew and what we felt could be a viable business, and we settled on a car wash. We opened our first location in Parkland, Florida, in the year 2013. It was an old kind of struggling car wash, we renovated it and we put it in our brand and our concept. When we bought it, it washed about 35,000 cars a year, and now it’s washing over 170,000 cars a year. Because of the progress, we were also able to build two more. 
    [9:20] Can you share how that kind of system operates and functions? 
    We take the approach that our employees with autism are extreme users of organizational systems. So they have the same needs as everyone else. They’re just more parents, and by designing for and with them, we’ve learned how to build more systems that are clear, streamlined, more inclusive, and that work better for everybody. So instead of letting go of employees, we take the approach of designing a system that they’re chafing up against in a way that works for them. Typically, we end up with a more innovative, better process that works better for everyone. Not every way works perfectly, but this approach works well for us. 
    [11:06] What are some of the challenges you faced in getting this off the ground? 
    When we were doing our research, there were not a lot of examples of non-profit businesses that designed and employed people with autism as most of their staff. Some nonprofit organizations have had some success but nothing we were trying to do was a consumer-facing business. We talked to a lot of experts and they told us it wasn’t going to work. My dad had been an entrepreneur before then and he was like, we will go into it and test it. We’ll take feedback but we will try and see if it’s going to work or not. I spent so much time figuring out how we will employ people with autism, how to train them, empower them and make them great employees. 
    [14:23] How do you tweak the system? 
    About 16% of the autism spectrum has a significant intellectual disability and half of the autism spectrum has no intellectual disability. It’s very wide and that is why we adopted the approach of figuring out who is having the biggest difficulty. So when we find out our team members just can’t do the work, we try to figure out where they a

    • 47 min
    How To Make Social Media GOOD For You with Isa Watson

    How To Make Social Media GOOD For You with Isa Watson

    In today’s episode, our guest is Isa Watson. She is an entrepreneur, author, skydiver, and classical pianist. She is the co-founder and CEO of Squad, the fun way to build a world of your closest friends--away from social media. Named top 100 MIT Alumni in Tech in 2021, Isa is a physical scientist turned social scientist, building the next generation's social connection tool.
    [3:50] Why should I listen to you? 
    You should listen to me because I have a great smile. 
    [4:38] Do you mind walking me through your human experiences as we progress through your book?
    I don't know many, and I didn’t grow up on social media in the same way that a lot of kids today did. I came from a big Caribbean family. I grew up in North Carolina, Chapel Hill. My dad was a computer engineer who migrated to the US, and his mentality was if you can’t build it, then you shouldn’t be using it. From the time I was seven, my dad would buy me the parts of a computer to build them, and that morphed into me loving building things with my hands. I worked in the research labs at UNC Chapel Hill for a chemistry professor starting at 14 years old. I became one of the youngest published chemists in the world at 19 years old. I fell into Wall Street after, but I pivoted to finance via my MBA at MIT. I also started a tech company called SQUAD, and our thesis is that the future of social media is deeper. 
    [9:05] How can someone relate to the emotions you felt in those moments when you realized that you were a different person online? 
    It's interesting because it wasn’t just that I liked who I was online; I was a much broader person with broader interests. What happens with the feedback mechanism is that you get feedback online from the people who engage with you. You allow them to narrow the mental model of who you are as a person, and that can be an incongruence. I’m human; I've evolved, and I am not the same person that I was five years ago. But there is some kind of permanence on the internet sometimes that makes people expect that, and for me, it became jarring. I got off all social media for two years because it was something I had to resolve. 
    [10:50] What do you see about people who try to be someone they are not online?  
    Another thing that we do is confuse our online friends with our real friends. We assume that the person that is liking our content all the time and consistently gassing us in our DMs is one of our friends when they are not. One of my friends told me that she doesn’t interact with any of her friends on social media, and I think about that too. I rarely interact with my friends on social media, so I don't think it’s a necessity in the way that a lot of people think.  
    [13:05] What is the name of your social media company or brand? What is the thesis, and what do you see this thing becoming in time? 
    With Squad, we say that we are the easiest and most fun way to talk to your close friends every day. You can only have up to 12 people in your squad, which reinforces the idea of staying connected. We released a new version, a new take on the phone experience. A lot of our users describe Squad as a corner of their phone where they can go to disarm and just be with the people they want to be with. But the whole idea is that you get a lot more joy from being consistent with a handful of people as opposed to trying to broadcast to a ton of people you’ll never laugh in the same room with. 
    [17:48] Where did you get the idea from in your internal conversations about creating another solution that the rest of the world could have access to? 
    After my dad died, I realized that I was in a kind of friendship deficit, and it was because I had underinvested in those relationships. I also think that friendships are active and not passive investments. One of the things I did was rejigger my core friend group, and I started to invest in the handful of people who were bringing me joy, and I felt the most aligned when I di

    • 42 min
    How to Create a Life on Your Terms with Jeff Lerner

    How to Create a Life on Your Terms with Jeff Lerner

    In today’s episode, our guest is Jeff Lerner. He is a former jazz musician turned 9-figure entrepreneur passionate about helping people unlock their potential and create their dream lives by believing and developing themselves. 
    [3:20] Why should I listen to you? 
    Because I don't want to sell you anything other than what is possible for your life. 
    [4:10] What do you frame for people regarding what is possible for their lives and their inability to see past the first branch? 
    Initially, it's about getting calibrated on the voice you are listening to. We’re born without a voice, surrounded by people that have agents. We can wail and make sounds, but we can’t articulate words. We can't form our ideas immediately when we are born, but we are immersed in other people’s ideas. We develop the ability to formulate our ideas and our own vision for our lives but by then, we’re probably on other people’s programs. There is this concept that if you just hold on till you are 65 years old and you do all the things you’re supposed to do, eventually, we will give you a few years where you get to live your own program. 
    [6:04] How does a person realize they're in this kind of matrix-ish program situation? 
    I don't think it takes that long. I think that everybody could probably discover a completely different version of themselves within probably 24 hours. Walking alone, you change your life. You just gotta create some stillness. If you look at the world we are living in right now, if there is a decrease in anything, I think it is stillness. Just create some intention in getting to know yourself. Also, reduce the external noise so that your voice can actually be heard. 
    [8:58] What was your journey?
    Before I say anything else, I'd like to encourage anyone tempted to jump to conclusions to at least suspend judgment. I grew up around a fair amount of money, and I'm an only child. My parents worked all day and I just had the house all to myself, reflecting on the prosperity and security I was surrounded by while also developing a relationship with myself. There is a lot more to it than that but what can I say that,out doing too much revisionist or retroactive? I will just for whatever reason by the time I was a teenager, I had decoupled the idea of money and happiness. Those two were not the same for me and I think that alone gave me a different truck in life. 
    [12:45] Where did the grit come from? 
    Everybody has got grit but they don't succeed. So I grew up with that orientation. For me, the harsh answer is that grit comes from pain. Whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Whatever we endure over time can transmute into grit. One of the books I come back to a lot is a book by C.S Lewis called the “Problem of pain” and it talks about why a just God would allow so much pain and suffering in the world. I don’t presume to have that answer on a universal scale but I can say for myself, that I have suffered a lot. I suffered from bullying, weight problems, psychological abuse, and scorn for the choices that I made. I won’t say the world turned against me but I think they quietly rooted for my failure and I could feel that. The Latin word for suffering is patio which is the root of the word passion and I think that for some people, suffering can transition into a passion and drive and it can also break a person. I am fortunate that it went the former way. 
    [16:18] What was one of the first things that you faced and overcame back then that was the catalyst for the rest of them?
    Probably the biggest one happened right around 18. I look back and it was a sort of out-of-body time form. I dropped out of high school around 16 and I was really my former declaration to myself and the world that I am not going to travel the ordinary path. I'm going to go the road less traveled. My very rational idea was to find something to do. Essentially, academic credentials play no part in one’s success and as a dropo

    • 49 min
    How to Create and Achieve Your Goals with Jon Acuff

    How to Create and Achieve Your Goals with Jon Acuff

    How to Create and Achieve Your Goals with Jon Acuff
    In today’s episode, our guest is Jon Acuff. He is the New York Times bestselling author of seven books, including his most recent, Soundtracks, The Surprising Solution To Overthinking. For over 20 years, he’s also helped some of the biggest brands tell their story, including The Home Depot, Bose, and Staples. His fresh perspective on life has allowed him to write for Reader’s Digest, Fast Company, The Harvard Business Review, and Time Magazine. He lives outside Nashville, TN, with his wife Jenny and two teenage daughters.
    [3:57] Why should I listen to you? 
    I think you should listen to anybody, and that's brave enough to start talking. I think many people are interested so whether it's me or somebody else, let’s go…
    [5:28] Did you always have that kind of calm desire?
    I was a jerk in college, like in senior college, and I got involved in raves like so and so. No, but I wouldn't say that was a good decision. That was not a great period of my life. So no, I think the older I get, the more I go. I want to do a small degree of things I love, not a bunch of things I kind of like, so as I, you know, talk about it, people say they don't have enough time. But you usually have enough time for the small degree of things. It's just that you're spending a lot of time on things you kind of sort of like, so let's narrow that down a little bit so you can really focus.
     [6:15] How did you figure out what you loved? 
    Well, a lot of it is self-awareness; you can’t achieve any goal or any sort of accomplishment without a degree of self-awareness. Because if you don't know how you operate, you just continue to make mistakes. An easy example would be that if you don't know you're a morning person, you'll schedule difficult tasks later in the afternoon and wonder why they're so hard. So for me, I don't do breakfast. because breakfast is too expensive, and that is self-awareness. It is paying attention to yourself.
     [8:13] How can someone get into the flow of even knowing what to test and try? 
    I'm going to brainstorm as many things as I want. But then, as I get closer to actually doing the things I start to eliminate, I'm going to try experiments. I'm going to say, I've tried this for 30 days. "What really happened?" Was it worth it? Did it go the way I wanted it to? If there was a business function in which I felt fulfilled, where I served and helped real people but did not see progress,? If I don't, I'm going to eliminate it. The average American watches two months of television per year. Two months, dude. If you only watch one month of TV a year, you will still get to watch a whole month. There's a whole industry dedicated to you not doing things like Netflix doesn't want you to write a book. They care about your time, and their whole business is designed around maximizing your time. 
    [10:34] Did you have to go through some kind of crazy to find this nuance out? 
    So for me, the big shift was in my early 30s. I started a blog, and the blog started to gain a little traction, and I realized that it was important to me. I had a full-time job, two kids under the age of 4, and a beautiful wife. So I had to start stealing time. I had to get up at 5 a.m. I would practice speeches because I do probably 50 to 60 gigs a year. I would practice speeches on the drive to work. I just decided I'm going to be disciplined, I'm going to have grit, I'm going to have willpower, and I found something I wanted more than what I currently had.  People change for two reasons: a lot of pain or a lot of desire, and I'd rather it be a lot of desire. So once I had, like, a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel, I started sprinting toward that tunnel. That's what changed it for me, I think.
    [15:10] When I want to film videos, I mentally switch between things. Have you ever had to train yourself that way too? 
    200%. I call those ginger moments. So the reason they serve ginger at sus

    • 50 min

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