Thrive Not Survive Podcast Episode #36: Finding the Fire Within with Ryan Hodge

Thrive Not Survive Podcast Episode #36: Finding the Fire Within with Ryan Hodge


The Biggest Challenges Facing Real Estate Agents and Their Success

Kelley Skar:                           All right, we are live. Welcome to the Thrive Not Survive podcast. This is the show that we put together to help you the real estate agent put actionable strategies into place. To help grow and take your real estate business to new heights.

                                                      I am your host Kelley Skar and welcome to episode number 36, with our guest, Ryan Hodge. We are calling this episode, ‘Finding the Fire Within.’ I just came up with that this morning, what do you think man?

Ryan Hodge:                         I love it man that is so good.

Kelley Skar:                           So good?

Ryan Hodge:                         The creative juices are flowing.

Kelley Skar:                           All right, as always I’m going to get in to Ryan’s intro here, his little bio and then we’re going to frame this show up and then we’re going to dive right in. Ryan Hodge is the broker owner of an independent real estate company in London Ontario, having recruited over 100 licensed agents in a four year period.

                                                      In his first year of sales, he sold a 170 homes, catapulting him into coaching others on real estate productivity and personal and spiritual development. He's a hockey dad of three boys and recently released his first book, 'The Integrity Vow' and 'Gauging Your Authentic Self'. Welcome to the show my friend.

Ryan Hodge:                         Thank you so much. Honored to be here, and I love what you and your colleagues at Redline are doing as well. Man, it’s fun to watch.

Kelley Skar:                           Thank you for that. I truly appreciate it coming from a guy like you. We’re going to talk about a couple of different topics today, but before we get into that, I’d love it if you took us on a little bit of a journey. Give us some insight into who you are, where you’ve come from.

                                                      Everybody had a job, a real job before they got into real estate. Maybe we can start there, and if you want to take this personal, let's take it personal. We want to get to know the real Ryan Hodge.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure.

Kelley Skar:                           You can actually take that handle and use it on Twitter and Instagram if you want.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure man. Well, born and raised in London Ontario, Canada. We are a market of approximately 350,000 people, 1700 agents in our market, give or take. I went to high school here and university here, got married here. I have a degree in sociology and psychology with an emphasis on human behavior.

                                                      During the period that I was in university, I started working in our family business, which was jewelry manufacturing. We did a lot with cooperate insignia, school rings, championship rings. I was flying all over and driving all over and it became a really, really good business for me.

                                                      As my dad was kind of slowing down and I was ramping up, we just started butt heads a little bit, which can happen in a family business. I was all over the map at that time, as far as traveling across Ontario. I had one little guy who was I think two years old at the time, my second was born January 29th. I decided to look at what other options there were just to kind of grow my own capacity.

                                                      I dove into real estate, got licensed in 2008. First full year was 2009. Blessed to have a really quick start, sold 170 homes, primarily just working with one agent, who still works with me to this date. There's a lot of story that’s revolved around that, just as far as growing a big team throughout my career and having that explode on me, in a good way and a really bad way.

                                                      Through that decided to open up an independent as well. Opened The Realty Firm, which is my company right now, on September of 2013. I’m fortunate to grow with over 100 licensed agents in that time. We’ve got an office in London Ontario, then we’ve got another one in Woodstock Ontario, which is our neighboring board. Just some really good, highly productive human beings.

                                                      Not just about real estate, but they're committed to their personal lives and finding the work life balance, just doing some amazing things. That’s my real estate story. Through that process I was fortunate to begin coaching. When I took up the real estate and had my small sales story inside of the RE/MAX network, which is where I began my career, and was fortunate to speak to the RE/MAX network with a number of wonderful organizations and brokerages. Kind of coached under the radar for a couple of years.

                                                      I have always done some form of coaching. Primarily it was on more of the real estate productivity, systems, strategies, lead generation. Coaching through Facebook and social media, things like that. Then over the last few years, just as I become little bit more transparent with some of the duality that I’ve had inside of the business, with successes, failures, challenges, my avatar has really changed to, not only those that are seeking real estate productivity and success, but those that are seeking fulfillment inside and outside of their careers as well.

Kelley Skar:                           Right, so you’re not kind of locking yourself into this niche? We say niche in Canada for our American friends that are listening or watching. It’s not niche it's niche. You’re not really locking yourself into that niche of real estate? You’re kind of going outside of real estate and trying to help people on business sense as well as a personal sense?

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure, yeah. Most of it is personal and what I would reference is spiritual development, personal and spiritual.

Kelley Skar:                           We see this a lot in our industry, where agents see a decent amount of success. They're selling 40, 50, 60, 100 homes in a year, and all of a sudden they decided they want to get into coaching, without any real background or any real street cred, other than the fact that they sold a lot of homes.

Ryan Hodge:                         Totally.

Kelley Skar:                           It seems to me like you’ve got the street cred. You’ve got the degrees, you've got the degree in sociology and psychology. My wife would probably love to talk to you. My wife's a psychologist by the way

Ryan Hodge:                         Sweet.

Kelley Skar:                           You’ve got that credibility kind of backing you up. What was it about coaching, specifically real estate agents, that kind of drew you to that? Was it the success that you saw and then the opportunity that RE/MAX offered you, because you saw that success? Or was it something that you were kind of always drawn to, coaching other individuals to be better and digging deep and pulling things out of them, that they didn’t really know that they had?

Ryan Hodge:                         Well, I mean that’s a story that kind of transpired and I’ll be transparent with it. Originally when I began coaching, it was more to create just a responsible boundary for myself. I had 40 or 50 people a year wanting to reach out for coffee or come have lunch or whatever. I loved contributing and I love the agent-agent network and pile of agent-agent referrals.

Kelley Skar:                           The can I pick your brain meeting.

Ryan Hodge:                         The pick your brain meeting.

Kelley Skar:                           Right.

Ryan Hodge:                         What would happen was, I didn’t mind that, because I think that there's great value in doing that. The networking and everything else, but agents get busy, so there would be no shows or they’d be on the phone the whole time, that they're with me. I just said, "Screw this." I’ve got to create some kind of platform or environment that I’m being responsible to my time.

                                                      When you’re clipping a couple hundred homes a year and you've got a bunch of kids and you’re trying to live your life and you've got all the other challenges that we all experience, you can't just always do it in a way that is not responsible to yourself. That’s really what it became.

                                                      I love the contribution to others. What I would say with coaching is that, there's a place and space for almost every coach out there right now. I think that we all offer value in a different way. What my experience was, after having coached with just about every major real estate training organization in the world myself, was that, a lot of them were one year programs. A lot of them were siloed in one space, and if you’ve got more of a driver, a driver personality like myself, often times the asset isn’t really the next business tip or strategy or tool. It’s implementation and execution.

Kelley Skar:                           Right.

Ryan Hodge:                         I take a one year program, put it in place in a couple months and I’d be going like, what do I have to do next?

Kelley Skar:                           Right.

Ryan Hodge:                         What’s left with this program? Then you get a little bit of frustration and you’re reaching out to others. It was just trying to come up with something that would assist others, that are in the realm of high productivity. Not that I don’t coach brand new agents, but those underlying principles of productivity, mindset, personal development are to me what’s really going to catapult them into any business success.

Kelley Skar:                           Yeah. You touched on something really important there. This idea that a coaching company, I don’t care who they are, they could be the largest and the smallest. If they're looking to like you said, silo an agent into a certain coaching program, where it's, you’re going to do this, this, this and this. Then once you’ve done that, you’re going to do this, this, this and this without really looking at what the results of the first this, this, this and this was.

                                                      Right, and then instead of kind of shifting away from the other part, the second part of the, this, this, this and this, and focusing on the success and then how to build on that success, it seems like a lot of coaching programs aren’t built like that. They’re siloed, they're very structured, you’ve got to do these things and we’re not going to focus on the success and how you got there and how to build on that success. We’re just going to like continually push you through the program. Once you’ve done it then, or once you’ve done it then we’ll sell you another six months or another year.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure. Well, and I think it transfers over to the general brokerage experience as well. I mean, when I got into the business, I got told that I could make a whole bunch of money if I made 200 cold calls a day or I stand a fortune in marketing.

                                                      Both of those work. We know that, but I just kind of said, "Bullshit." There are a number of different ways to do it. One of the questions that I get often is, well how did you sell a 170 homes your first year? Well, 34 of them came from free organic Facebook, which I didn’t learn at my brokerage. I went out of market to learn that. 22 were online leads and lead capture, registrations, converting calls. 27 were from the sphere, 14 were from the geographical firm. Then the rest were the traditional stuff, door knocking, cold calling. Prospecting.

                                                      To me I immediately went, this business can be done any, which way you choose, if you find the path that suits you. I wasn’t going to take the answer as far as doing it just one way, one boxed way of doing this business. I think that, hey, that’s great.

                                                      If a coaching organization can say, whether it’s worked by referral or you’re going to be a lead generator, you can make a quarter million dollars a year and that’s good for you. That’s fine, but the challenge is that a lot of people jump into that, they suck up the information like it’s sugar. When they don’t enjoy doing it, they spit it out like it's salt, and then they stop doing it. Then it’s just that treadmill of peaks and valleys inside the business, which we’re all familiar with.

                                                      To me, it’s about finding that path of least resistance. What we resist persists, and if we can find the path that feels good to us to generating business in any, which way that is, that’s where the success comes with a lot more ease.

Kelley Skar:                           Jesus, you sound a lot like Sara Kalke there, the path of least resistance.

Ryan Hodge:                         Oh we’re up in the same realm in certain areas. I love Sarah. We just spent some time in LA. Sara and I always, she’s spoken at one of my events, but we’ve been at a few of the John [inaudible 00:11:53] Leadership live events and connected there.

                                                      The one thing about Sara is that we’ve kind of analyzed each others business a little bit and said, "You know what, your way isn’t for me," and my way isn’t for her, but there's a mutual respect on some of the underlying principles of success and fulfillment inside of the industry.

Kelley Skar:                           Right. Okay, this is a good segue. Let’s talk about, in your experience in coaching, many clients, we’re going to stick to the kind of the real estate niche for right now. In your experience, what are some of the recurring themes or recurring problems that you’re seeing with a lot of agents?

                                                      Now I don’t know if you can kind of pinpoint something, but something that you’re hearing lot of with realtors. Is it time management? Is it lead generation? Then maybe we could talk a little bit about what, maybe some of those solutions are, what you found that really has worked for your coaching clients.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure. Well, I think that and I did this. I posed a question in a group close to 5,000 agents and a number of my own group and said, "What’s the number one way that gets in the way of the, what number one thing that gets in the way of the happiness, freedom and results based productivity that you desire and deserve inside of real estate?"

                                                      The number one answer by far and I did it on a word cloud, which I do in some of my presentations was time management. Number two was fear. Time management and a close follow up was fear, but we hear more often than not time management, because it’s one that is easier to talk about.

                                                      The challenge is that, it’s not about time management. We have 168 hours available to each and every one of us in every single week. It’s more about personal responsibility and choice management.

Kelley Skar:                           Right.

Ryan Hodge:                         The other aspect in regards to fear is that, fear is an energy that often times people don’t understand what it actually is. They find that fear can overwhelm them or they allow fear to be the guiding system. Fear is not the guiding tool.

                                                      Fear is just an energy, and it’s the ones that understand that energy of fear and how to navigate it, that have success. I mean even when you look at the top lead generators on the planet that still do it at a very, very high level. If you asked them, "Do you still get nervous before you get on the phone?" Most of them will say, "Absolutely. That first call or two, I've still got a bit of the jitters." What they’ve done is they’ve learned to understand the energy is fear, they’ve learned to understand that fear is more of a barometer of our soul, which I know is more of a spiritual principle, but that allows them to navigate through it and step into their power a little bit easier.

                                                      That’s the challenge with society right now or even the brokerage model, is that, society and our brokerage model on ... I’m not saying that every broker, but it is known that we’ve got a very complacent brokerage model across the industry. Society and the brokerage model breed mediocrity, okay, they absolutely breed mediocrity.

                                                      They are okay with the averages based on the way that the compensation goes to the brokerage. Often times it’s not just about people having a fear of failure. Often times it’s about having a fear of success as well. In doing that deep rooted personal work, they can then find an understanding of what that fear associated with is and what that energy really is and why and where it's being created. It will then allow them to step further into what they really want to do.

Kelley Skar:                           Yeah, that’s something that’s really interesting to me actually, that the fear of success. For me it’s not about the fear of failure, like this podcast for instance. We’re at, this, we’re shooting the 36 episode right now and I didn’t think that I would even get to 20.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure.

Kelley Skar:                           We're starting to get a lot of traction on it. The listens and stuff, the downloads are going up and that sort of thing. There's some recognition happening, and I wasn’t even sure if I could even get past 20 episodes or 25 episodes, because I wasn’t sure where this thing was going to go.

Ryan Hodge:                         Right.

Kelley Skar:                           The idea of it was, in theory was, well we’re just going to create this great content. We’re going to push it out, but I had kind of in the back of my mind that there's a possibility that this could lead to other things as well.

                                                      It’s starting to happen. Like there are certain emails and phone calls and messages that I’m getting about this, that and the other thing. "Hey, can you do this? Can you speak here? Can you?" It's like I wasn’t, I guess at the end of the day I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to go past 25 episodes, it would be just like a one and done sort of thing.

                                                      I think a lot of the agents feel that way with their business. If I make this one phone call, what if they say, "Yes,"? What if they say, "Yes, come and list my house?" Oh shit, now I've got to work.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure.

Kelley Skar:                           Right, and now is it the fear of success or is it the fear that now I've got to go to work?

Ryan Hodge:                         Well, I think that it’s a bit of everything. I mean if you were to look at just the simple process of how people are productive or what they are fearful of. If you ask someone, "Are you fearful of making a cold call?" Most people would raise their hand. If you’re fearful of going on a listing appointment, they still experience some of that anxiety. Are they fearful of some of their clients, well some of them still are, because they're letting the business run them. They're not taking control of their own minds and running their own business.

                                                      I think that when you look at the general overarching principle with real estate is that, people aren’t associating with others to ascend. You look at what you’re doing as far as your content creation, right, your content creation is promoting a positive message. It’s serving and supporting others, which means success will never be an issue.

                                                      As you continue to create that content, of course, it will funnel into other things. I just spent a couple days where I got around Joshua Smith, who I think you’re familiar with.

Kelley Skar:                           Yes.

Ryan Hodge:                         Josh is a guy that’s got nine different businesses, completely hands off on his real estate team as far as only spending about an hour, I think a week inside of it. 600 plus ends a year, but he is the most downloaded real estate podcast in the industry.

                                                      He says it’s for two things. Number one, yeah, it serves and support others. It contributes, it might funnel into his 90 day mastery program or his team environment or whatever. At the end of the day it makes him feel good, because he gets lots of people reaching out saying, "You’ve impacted my life, you’ve impacted my business, thank you so much."

                                                      That’s just self serving activity, and that’s where content like this works both ways, but it's agent. When they're just siloed in with associations that says the real estate market's shit or you can only do it this way or you’re not going to make X amount of dollars, because it just doesn’t exist. Well, get out of that nonsense. That is the mediocrity that's spread to us from an early age.

Kelley Skar:                           You said something a little bit earlier, with respect to time management, and you talked about personal responsibility with respect to time management. I love that, because I think you really just need to make the decision as to whether you want to manage your time properly or not.

                                                      This isn’t about how busy you are, this isn’t about how many deals you’re doing in a month. This isn’t about how many phone calls. It’s about being responsible, being accountable to yourself, to your family and to your calendar. Maybe talk about that a little bit and how you’re coaching some of your clients kind of around this false idea that time management is such an issue for a lot of realtors.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure. Well, whenever we run into other realtors or people in general, I think one of the things that we find is, when you ask somebody how they're doing ...

Kelley Skar:                           Oh I’m so busy.

Ryan Hodge:                         Yeah.

Kelley Skar:                           I'm so busy.

Ryan Hodge:                         Right, so busy and so that’s just an answer. Okay, well let's break that down and this is something that I think I actually got from Josh a long time ago, but I do work with my clients on it. Got 168 hours in a week, okay you take off the number of hours on average that somebody sleeps in a week. Okay, number of hours on average that somebody sleeps in a week.

                                                      You then subtract the number of hours that people dedicate to their careers in a week. Maybe it's 40 hours, maybe it's 60 hours. If you’re a workaholic like myself, maybe it's 80 hours. From there what I always look for is 10 hours, so two hours a day, five days a week dedicated to non negotiable personal development time. What’s going to allow us to serve ourselves, to bring our best foot forward into each and every experience.

                                                      When you say how many hours do you have left, well most people have between 40 and 60 hours. 40 and 60 hours or 40 to 60 hours to do the things that they want to do with the people that they want to do them with. Okay, that is serving purpose, right, whether it’s their friends, family, charity, date night, whatever that looks like. 40 to 60 hours that allows us time to understand that we’ve got all the time in the world to do those things. Unless you’re doing seven nights a week that are eight hour date nights, which is pretty rare inside of any environment.

                                                      However, when you look at that and you dedicate that time first, that avoids career resentment, because you have created an absolute non negotiable to your personal time, okay, your purposeful personal time. Whatever it is for self serving, such as fitness, meditation, going for a walk, reading a non business related book, you cover off that 10 hours.

                                                      Now you’re serving your family and friends, so you don’t have the career resentment from somebody else or for yourself. You’re serving yourself to make sure that you’re looking after yourself, bringing your best foot forward. You put two hours a day, five days a week into the lead generation, that is non negotiable and you create absolute boundaries for all those, everything falls into place and your business explodes.

Kelley Skar:                           That sounds really simple.

Ryan Hodge:                         It does, but it's personal responsibility and the power of choice, and that’s what really gets in the way.

Kelley Skar:                           That’s right. I’m right into, I don’t know, you’ve probably heard of Jocko Willink?

Ryan Hodge:                         Yup.

Kelley Skar:                           Yeah. Okay, so ‘Discipline Equals Freedom’ is, it’s got to be one of my favorite books right now. I’ve read the book, ‘Extreme Ownership’ as well. This is a fantastic book, I love this one, which led me to 'Discipline Equals Freedom'. It’s a book that I have on iTunes, and my kids want to listen to it all the time. They jump in the truck and they’re like, "Can we listen to Jocko? Put on Jocko," right and they have a couple that they really, really like, and so we’ll listen to them. Then I’ll ask them questions about it.

                                                      This really comes down to mindset and it really is about discipline. I went through an episode last year, where I wasn’t feeling good. I found out it was my gall bladder, I had my gall bladder removed. A couple of weeks before I had my gall bladder removed, I wound up deciding that I was going to start to make some changes in my life and start going to the gym.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure.

Kelley Skar:                           If I look back on it, and I’m truly honest with myself about that time period, that start in January probably would have fizzled out by March. I wouldn’t have committed to it anywhere near like I’ve committed to it now at this point. I guess for some people sometimes it takes something, a life changing event. For me it wasn’t life threatening, but it was life changing in the fact that, I’m sitting there in this hospital bed and my kids walk in to the hospital room. They see me in a gown and sitting in a bed, in a hospital and the look on their faces was just life altering for me.

Ryan Hodge:                         Oh yeah.

Kelley Skar:                           The fear that I saw in their eyes was just, it was a no brainer. It was like, you know what, I want to be around here for another 50, 60, 70 years. I’m not going to be able to get there if I’m going to continue down the same path that I’m going on. For me it was an absolute commitment to my health and my well being, and getting up and going to the gym and eating healthy and doing the things that I need to do, not just for me, but also for my family.

Ryan Hodge:                         Totally.

Kelley Skar:                           If you don’t have that life changing event, how do you instill that discipline? Jocko just, he says, "Just do it." How do I, there's this passage in the book that talks about, he says, he gets these questions all the time, how do I get up at 4:30 AM and go to the gym consistently? His answer is, "Get up at 4:30 AM and go to the gym consistently."

                                                      Now, I think that, that’s a very simplistic way of looking at things. If you’re a former navy seal and very self disciplined and have that training behind you, it gets very, very easy just to say that. Maybe you can talk a little bit about how to get that person to get out of that trap, where they start something, they fizzle out and they get back in to the same track that’s comfortable.

                                                      How do they continually stay out of their comfort zone and continue down this track to self fulfillment and wellness and well being?

Ryan Hodge:                         I would look at that, in my own experience and those that I work with and the people that I continue to study as, understanding what we reference as the path of awareness. Okay, the awareness of the self.

                                                      When you ask people, what is it that they really want, well most people are going to say happiness. Well, what does happiness mean to them? How can they walk backwards to understand what happiness has really looked like in their lives, and understand what may be getting in the way of what they truly seek and desire? Which is ultimately happiness and fulfillment and often times, freedom.

                                                      When we look at discipline, well, discipline's right up there in the realm of energy. What kind of energy do we have to expend to have that discipline? How can we minimize the energy requirements as far as what’s going to allow us to get into that highest version of self serving behavior?

                                                      For example, for me, and I’ve done a number of different things on the fitness side and I’m in a kind of a recommitment mode right now, just to lean out a little bit. When I know that I have to make six meals per day and I need to go to the gym and do a 60 minute high impact intensity training session, there's consistency in that, that I'm aware of, that really doesn’t require as much discipline. If I’m going to keep shifting things such as my nutritional standards or testing and trying, like I’m on a calorie and macro and that kind of diet right now, well some of it actually takes more energy than the consistency does.

                                                      Sometimes about looking backwards, and it's kind of doing, whether it’s a retro 90 days or reverse manifestation as to say, what allowed me to create other experiences in my past that were fulfilling, satisfying and got the results that I was really seeking? Am I aligned as far as the actions that I'm taking with the intentions to do that now? That requires a discipline as far as an awareness, and understanding a constant awareness and an understanding about the path of the higher self.

                                                      When we look at programming for example, Jap Lag says this well, "The conscious mind thinks, the conscious mind thinks, the unconscious mind acts." The conscious mind thinks, the unconscious mind acts. Often times we’ve got really good intentions, we’ve got our energy directed in the right places and spaces. We know what actions are required to do the things that we want to do with the people that we want to do them with and feel good. However, our unconscious mind allows us to self distract in ways then we don’t take the action.

                                                      It’s about that constant awareness and finding the rituals. The rituals, and the principles and understanding what serves you, and everybody is different that way. Nobody needs to be full on jacked and maybe they don’t drink alcohol or they don’t eat any naughty food. It is truly about understanding what is that fulfillment for each individual. Each individual that wants to do a little bit more or grow a little bit more or have a little bit more, but everybody’s story is different. It's the awareness to the self that allows us to create those activities.

Kelley Skar:                           Man, you’re just creating these awesome segues, I just love this. First of all congratulations on the book. This is your first book I’m assuming?

Ryan Hodge:                         First book, yes.

Kelley Skar:                           First book man, 'The Integrity Vow'. Maybe walk us through the gist of the book, and then let's get into why you wrote it. It doesn’t seem like it’s a book that’s necessarily geared towards real estate like what we’ve talked about. Seems like it’s a book that helps people tear away the layers of their life that is the onion, and it helps them discover not only who they truly are, but what they want in life and how to get it. I’m I on the mark here?

Ryan Hodge:                         Yeah, you’re right up in the realm. I’ve got it. There it is for anybody who wants the ...

Kelley Skar:                           Oh nice.

Ryan Hodge:                         Wants my shameless plug. 'The Integrity Vow' is a book that I wrote. I actually started doing a bunch of journaling a couple of years ago. I woke up, or I’ve woken up several times and my real estate career, where things were going well on a surface level. First year in the business, sold a 170 homes, couple of years later, couple of hundred homes, clipping with a big team. Grew a brokerage, thriving in success, but the success was really just a toxic replacement for fulfillment.

                                                      I woke up several times on a January, one going like holy shit. I mean I’ve had this great year business wise, but in some cases like my world’s literally falling apart from the experiences that I was creating. I started doing some coaching with some people on the personal and spiritual realms. Started going through my journaling, which became a big ritual and all of a sudden you’ve got a few hundred pages of what appears to be a book.

                                                      In my own podcast I did an interview with a girl out of California that’s written 18 books, which has got spiritual background. When we did the interview she said, "Are you going to write your own book?" Or, "When are you going to write your own book?" I thought, maybe I’ve got one. I don’t really know.

                                                      I sent off what I had written to her, because I had started to do more of a chapter format and that’s what she said to me. She said, "You’ve got great writing here, but you’ve written a journal really a big journal. You’re not really looking at your audience."

                                                      I did work with her for about six months to nine months on creating a book that goes out to a few different audiences. That appealed to my own client avatar, which are highly productive people that are facing different experiences on a very normal level to a very drastically challenging level. Looked at how to create a book that was marketable as far as the writing style goes, that it’s not a journal, it’s more of a guide or a self help, self empowerment book with exercises and things like that.

                                                      Ultimately, I wanted to bridge the gap between just my own personal experience, but those of many of the clients that I’ve worked with. Obviously being responsible and changing names or male versus female, or you a little bit about the story. It allowed me to create you know a pretty strong workbook on the avatar that I like to work with. Really that is anybody that seeks growth and change in any area of their life or business.

                                                      My current real estate coaching client is probably different than many. My clients come in more often than not. They’re highly, highly productive, but they may be experiencing challenges with addiction. They may be experiencing challenges with relationships or infidelity. They may be experiencing challenges with lack of purpose, lack of self confidence, low self worth, which sometimes they come in and it’s just strictly real estate, but there's those key underlying principle to really dive into such as time management, choice management, serving self.

                                                      Other times it's how to find your own life’s purpose, which is not always easy. It took me 38 years to discover that. Through all of those experiences and what I believe is coming from a pure place of transparency, that’s the aim of the book. When you come from that transparent and authentic place, it allows others to do the same and more often than not, not only do you give them a bore of relief that they can achieve more as far as the fulfillment aspect goes, which usually will yield greater results, compounded greater results as far as business. It allows them to step forwards and say what they’ve got to say, and that sometimes is challenging.

Kelley Skar:                           Yeah. I think if you’re, especially when in the coaching realm, I mean if you’re ... It’s really easy to preach. It’s really easy to sit back and say, "You’ve got to do this, you’ve got to do that," but I think that if you can connect with that person sitting across from you or on the other end of the phone or on the other end of a video chat, and you’re talking about the experiences that you’ve had that were shitty, right, that absolutely sucked. This is how you got through it, and being absolutely transparent with it, I think that people will have, they’ll take that opportunity to also be transparent with you. Also, start to open up and really look inward within themselves and start to kind of like I said peel those layers of the onion back.

                                                      Like I mentioned, my wife is a psychologist. She deals right now with addictions. One of the things that I’ve learned a lot from her, one of the things that she often talks about is, in treating addiction it isn’t about treating the alcoholism. A lot of times or drug addiction, a lot of times there's underlying factors there that you’ve got to dig down and get into, and solve those issues before you can solve the alcohol problem.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure.

Kelley Skar:                           Right, and so it could be the same thing in business man. If it’s a self esteem issue, let’s dig, let’s peel the layers back and find out why you’ve got a self esteem problem. Like why is it that you’re having a problem picking up the phone? Where's the lack of confidence coming from?

                                                      From the outside everything looks great. You're successful, you’re doing all these transactions, but it takes so much for you to pick up the phone, like why is that?

Ryan Hodge:                         Sure, and that’s really the same work. I mean my psychology background is not that of a psychologist, but the relentless study of spirituality kind of says that the same way. The addiction, whether it’s a cocaine addiction or whether it’s a work addiction or whether it’s an addiction to low self worth, which often happens, those are just symptoms. Symptoms of what I reference as a broken soul.

                                                      Where can we go backwards, where can we identify where some of those experiences were actually created? Cut some of those negative energetic cords that are associated with them and allow ourselves to really, not only step forward for ourselves, but shine that light and that positivity and that value transference from our own experiences on others.

Kelley Skar:                           If you were to, I was going to say one thing, but if you were to ... If you wanted to have your audience, the reader of your book come away with three things out of the book, what would you say the top three things out of the book that you'd want that reader to come away with?

Ryan Hodge:                         Well, the universal law of authenticity requires transparency and integrity. Okay, and so that’s why 'The Integrity Vow', really looks to, how can somebody live the happiness, freedom and true version of themselves, without adhering to what I believe is a program that we face in our society? How can they step forward and unravel and discover their highest version of them, that they know exists?

                                                      I mean anybody that you know has a pulse, knows that there's something that they can step forward into, that is true personal power. There's only about three percent of the people in the planet that do it and it's hard damn work trying to live that. The journey never stops. We can make great progress then we can go backwards. You know?

Kelley Skar:                           Right.

Ryan Hodge:                         The third thing is, how can I continually revisit the self to ensure that I stay pointed in that right direction? Does that answer that?

Kelley Skar:                           Yeah, absolutely, absolutely, and to be honest with you I just downloaded it on kindle. I didn’t realize there's a hard cover copy. I looked on Amazon, but it's not there.

Ryan Hodge:                         No, so we’re just working through the wonderful world of Amazon right now.

Kelley Skar:                           Okay.

Ryan Hodge:                         Sorry brother, this lighting's been a little bit shifty. The sun’s, must be cloudy outside.

Kelley Skar:                           It’s okay.

Ryan Hodge:                         Anyways, so we've started off with the Amazon process. What a, let me say a wonderful experience that was with creating a hard copy book in it. I had a big event that I wanted to launch at November, so I had to find a printer, short notice. Picked up 500 books the day before the event at about eleven o’clock at night. Got that out there, got it on my website, which is

                                                      Right now we're in the process of, we’ve got it on Kindle, so we’re just going to the launch process of Kindle and then Amazon. I would think within the next couple of weeks we launch on Audible as well.

Kelley Skar:                           Awesome. I’m looking forward to that. I love your voice man. You've got a great voice for audio.

Ryan Hodge:                         Well, it was fun man. I mean, what a process Audible is too though. You can, when you write a book, one of the projects that I had was to, for editing purposes and going through it, was to read the book out loud.

Kelley Skar:                           Right.

Ryan Hodge:                         That took a little bit of time, you catch mistakes, you do different things that way. Reading the book into a microphone and going through that, like the people that are professional readers, for purposes like audio books, I give them credit, because that was a good 30 to 40 hours in the studio. Just crazy, but I’m super proud of it, super proud.

Kelley Skar:                           All right, so to our audience, you can head over to and search out 'The Integrity Vow'. It’s only a buck 24 on Kindle, so get out there and pick it up. I mean and it’s a quick read, right, like 250 pages or something like that?

Ryan Hodge:                         Yeah, it’s 252.

Kelley Skar:                           Yeah, there you go, 252 pages. Ryan my friend, thank you so much for being on the podcast today. I appreciate your time and I appreciate the energy that you put into this podcast today man. I think people, we’re going to come away with, from this podcast, listening to this, with just some tremendous value, so thank you so much.

Ryan Hodge:                         Well, I’m honored brother and we’re going to turn the tables shortly, because I want to have you on mine and take people through the amazing things that are going on with Kelley Skar, Redline and all the amazing things you’re doing man.

Kelley Skar:                           I’m looking forward to that man, that’s going to be great. As always, thank you very much for tuning in. If you are listening to this on iTunes, it would be great if you could hop over there and leave us a review, five stars would be wonderful. If you’re watching this on Facebook or on YouTube, and you have questions, please leave your comments down below. Give us a thumbs up and a like if you like, if you’ve got some good value out of this. Again, thank you very much Ryan and we’ll catch you next week.

Ryan Hodge:                         Much love and respect man.

TNS Episode #29: Life and Business Planning with Dan Keller

TNS Episode #29: Life and Business Planning with Dan Keller

TNS Podcast Episode #35: How to Start a Podcast

TNS Podcast Episode #35: How to Start a Podcast