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Aww Shift

Dec 12, 2023

Welcome back to the Awwshift podcast with your host, Anthony Trucks. Today's guest is Rick Jordan Ulrich, a man who has achieved remarkable feats despite not starting with much. He's built an impressive life and made a significant impact on others. Rick emphasizes that money is a tool, sparking a profound discussion about money, life, and humanity. This engaging conversation delves into the deeper aspects of wealth and well-being. Rick describes it as one of his favorite discussions in the last six months, and it's definitely worth a listen. 

[2:59] Why should I listen to you? 

I love connecting with people; it defines who I am. Our purpose on this planet is to interact with others. The introvert-extrovert dynamic doesn't change the fact that we're here to connect. Personally, I'm an extrovert; you won't find surprises in a personality test. Yet, even introverts are here to engage and build relationships. It doesn't matter where you are or what you're doing; interaction and relationships are fundamental. 

[3:45] I'd love for you to share what you're most proud of. What achievements stand out for you?

While some might label me a cliché serial entrepreneur, I'm not a fan of that phrase as it suggests a lack of focus. I prefer the idea of going where I'm needed at the moment. For instance, I decided to make a documentary about the lockdown three years ago when COVID-19 emerged. The business was thriving, and with everyone stuck at home, I thought, "Why not devote six weeks to shed light on the situation?" It opened doors and illustrated the concept of going where you're needed. This approach has been a key factor in discovering purpose. When younger colleagues ask how I found my path, it's simple—I stumbled upon opportunities and decided to try them out.

[10:12] Did you always have that discipline, or did you build it over time? What's the secret to your commitment?

Building a strong work ethic was a gradual process for me. Taking care of my body became a pivotal shift in my life years ago. Growing up in a middle-class family with limited resources, our meals often consisted of simple dishes like mac and cheese or frozen Salisbury steaks. Looking back, it's surprising how I survived on such poor-quality food. I remember chugging three 16-ounce glasses of milk daily for protein before protein shakes were a thing. Reflecting on those habits, it's clear how crucial nutrition is. What I rarely discuss is that despite the challenges, it's crucial to acknowledge bad days while preventing them from turning into bad weeks or months. Negative self-talk may linger, but it's vital not to become the abuser of oneself. By returning to routine, whether hitting the gym, reading in the morning, having a proper meal, or going to the office, we can prevent bad days from snowballing into prolonged negativity.

[13:18] Do you adhere to a disciplined plan or structure, or do you operate more on how you feel?

I implemented time blocking about two years ago, and interestingly, I later came across a Harvard Business Review article ranking it as the top discipline method. As the CEO of a rapidly growing company, flexibility is key for me. While some prefer scheduling to the minute, I find time blocking offers the right balance. Mondays are dedicated to preparing for the week with one-on-ones and a live CEO talk. Tuesday to Thursday mornings focus on internal matters, while afternoons are reserved for external engagements, like podcasts, vendor meetings, or forming connections. Fridays remain open for any necessary adjustments. 

[23:50] What was your initial mindset or conversation about money, and how has it changed over time?

I often share this example. My parents had an incredible relationship. My dad passed away when I was just 16, and I'm grateful for the time I had with him compared to my younger siblings. Despite their age, they had their challenges. But growing up a bit older, I got to witness more of their amazing marriage. The only significant fights they had were over money, not the usual couple disagreements. People have bad days, but from my perspective, their marriage was amazing. I had a great childhood. Seeing them fight over money made me think early on, "Why would I want to be in a position of lack?" As I became more emotionally mature, I realized it was a choice. Lack, to me, isn't about a shortage of money; it's about resources. Money is a tool for those resources that allow you to do the things you want. Whether it's fitness or any other goal, you need resources like a gym, equipment, or a membership, all requiring money. So, instead of fighting over lack as my parents did, I ask myself, "What if there's no lack?" Focusing on a gap, which is temporary, is different from perceiving a permanent lack as a negative force. I focus on abundance, thinking about what I'd do if I had everything needed to achieve my goals. It's about making the shift moving in the direction of abundance and obtaining the necessary resources.

[32:45] Going back to our earlier conversation about money, it's about taking personal ownership and being the one in control. Were there times when you felt out of control? How did regaining control look for you? 

Despite being an optimistic person, money triggers me due to my parents' past fights over lack. I practice gratitude but still struggle when faced with shortages in business and life. About eight months ago, going public, I was two days away from not making payroll, causing a two-week negative spiral. Reminders, like a board saying "I have a $10 million company," help ground me. Recognizing that I have all I need each day is my key to staying positive. Consistent discipline has proven successful in overcoming challenges.

[49:39] What promise did God make to the world when he created you? 

That I am the promise of resources. 

Key Quotes 

[8:29-8:32] The longer you sit in it, the longer it lasts.
[12:25-12:30] When you allow yourself to be a victim to yourself, you are both the abuser and the victim. 

How to connect with Rick Jordan