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Just as the world entered lockdown, Tiffanee Cook was operating two health clubs. Suddenly faced with having to close her businesses, Tiffanee was left to ponder what to do with her life. Out of her newfound circumstances, she created one of the hottest podcasts in the world and started receiving paid sponsors in month number two.

In this episode, you will learn resilience, how to adapt to your circumstances, and what it takes to literally roll with the punches.

— Tiffanee Cook

Susan Sly interview with Tiffanee Cook

Topics covered in the interview

Control your controllables
The courage to change
Not giving up
Getting Roll With The Punches started

Tiffanee Cook’s Bio

“Everyone has a plan, until they get punched in the face”.

Tiffanee Cook has learned this as a business woman, performance coach and boxer; from the comfort, predictability and safety provided by the corporate world, to the lessons and let-downs in and out of the boxing ring. Coming to the realisation that, in order to have one’s hand raised in triumph, adversity, discomfort and combat must be navigated. In the face of the messiness of life, do we fight or do we flee?

Tiffanee speaks openly of her own personal experiences (good and bad) and how those experiences have enabled her to develop self-awareness, resilience, courage, independence and the skill to be able to maximise passion, possibilities and potential. She talks about getting knocked down (literally and metaphorically) and what it is that makes some of us get back up and some, stay down.

Working in business, sport, high performance and personal development, Tiffanee explores a range of ideas, tools, skills, resources, philosophies and strategies to empower individuals, teams and organisations to improve everything from productivity, efficiency, culture and communication to physical, mental, emotional and social health.

Follow Tiffanee Cook

Show Notes

Read Full Transcript

Susan Sly 00:02
So my guest today has a motto, everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face. And this woman went from never boxing to entering a competition, becoming a professional boxer, and then starting a business, building an entrepreneurial empire during COVID, and has one of the top podcasts, not just in Australia, but rising in the world. And I love her. Oh my gosh! She is my sister from another mister, and the host of Roll With The Punches. The one and only amazing, I feel like I need the bell for the boxing ring, Tiffanee Cook.

Tiffanee Cook 00:42
My new podcasting soul sister Susan, how are you? So good to see you again. Thank you. What an intro.

Susan Sly 00:48
Oh, well, thank you. It's so good to be with you. And thank you for having me on your show. And if the listeners haven't heard, Tiffanee's show where she interviews me, now I'm going to turn the tables. And we're just going, we got so raw and real. And this is about Raw and Real Entrepreneurship. We're just going to pick it up. And so we're, there's, there's no holding back. And we're going to dive in. So first and foremost, my first question for you is, right now there's a lot of uncertainty going on the world. The Delta variant is going on. I was watching CNBC this morning, and they were saying that Southwest is finding a lot of people are canceling flights, I got a message from someone on Neil Patel's team, there was an event, they've decided to postpone the event in Austin, because of the Delta variant. Last year during COVID, everything shutting down, you decide to launch a podcast when you had never podcasted in your freaking life, sister. And my first, my first question out of the gate is, what advice do you want to give to people right now who are scared?

Tiffanee Cook 02:01
Control you controllables and do something that you wouldn't normally do. Because that's, that's the first thing I looked at and the first thing I did. And like, well, look where it has gotten me. You know, crazy. The first thing I did when the pandemic hit last year, I'd already answered a really important question. Two years prior, I had entered into a business partnership. And for me, it was a big step, it was a bricks and mortar business in partnership with three other people. And I felt like my, the risk, risk versus reward for me was stronger, was higher risk than for them. So they're already very well established in other businesses. And I thought to myself, or rather I asked myself, if Tiff, if this doesn't go the way you want it to, if this falls to a very low point, then will you get enough out of the experience to make that worthwhile? Either knowledge, or will it change your life enough for you to move on to bigger and better things? Is this something you want? So I answered that question, so when COVID hit, and my two gyms that had not yet made a profit in those two years got shut down, and my income got stopped, I went, Oh, well, I've answered that question. And this wasn't, like it's not my choice how things happened. But I've answered the question. So I can't, I can't complain about that. I thought to myself, first thing I'll do, I'll pretend that I'm on two weeks holidays, it's summer, it's March, sit in my courtyard, I went outside, I laid on the sun lounge, and I thought, I'm going to imagine I'm in Thailand at one of my boxing retreat, I'm at the resort. And I'm just going to kind of visualize that and, and then I thought never give myself a holiday. So how great is that? I thought I can't control any of the macro, I cannot control whether business goes bankrupt, I cannot control if I lose my assets. I cannot control any of that. I cannot have any certainty about what this pandemic means. But I can have a great two weeks and figure something out. And it was powerful. Because from that place, from that place, I don't know why I felt better than I've ever felt. And I then focus on, I guess, focus my time on the things that I would, what can I gain? So I put finance and money and all of that to the back of my mind. And I thought what are the things I can work on that I can't lose in these really uncertain times? What are the things that I've always pushed to the side that are really important to me? And opportunities came up and that were crazy in themselves. Opportunities came up for things that I felt that I'd asked for but in ways that I never expected, for example, working with the Ambulance Victoria Paramedics. There was a position created for me in the pandemic. And, you know, a few weeks prior to that, I was looking for this exact position in this style of a business. So, you know, those, those things all came together. And yeah, I mean, these are lessons for me, those, those small shifts of, don't focus on that, focus on this. When great stuff happened from that, I have to always, and it's continuous, I have to always, we're not, when I reach a new normal, because even in the middle of this pandemic, pandemic, that in itself is not normal, you reach a new normal fairly quickly, you reach a new routine, but I always remind myself, Hey, are you leaning back to a place that, that was Tiff, Tiff, pre pandemic, like, let's keep Tiff mid pandemic. Let's keep this new Tiff because look at how amazing the results were. But it's really easy to just slide back into the old habits, old mindset, old ways. So make sense?

Susan Sly 06:11
Dang girl, Tiff, pre pandemic, like thinking about the, there are some people who are still mourning their lives pre pandemic, as we head into a new surge, and I call it the sorority pandemic, because after Delta, it's Epsilon, and then you know, we're gonna go Gamma, like, it'll just, we'll go through all the Greek alphabet. And it's sad, and it's tragic. But as you said, it's about controlling the controllables. And it's the decision, it's the decision to say that who I was, can be no more because the world has changed. And if I don't change in a changing world, then shame on me not on the world. How did you, how did you get the courage to do that? And for people who don't know, you know, you've been punched in the face many times legally, right? Like you know, because you wanted to be not because somebody did it to you. But tell us, tell everyone your story about how you discovered boxing. Because to have the strength you have, I know just getting to know you as I have, that was such a pivotal moment into this new Tiff. This post pandemic, post, current pandemic, pre next pandemic. Tiff, tell everyone how that happened.

Tiffanee Cook 07:39
Yeah, so I was working. I was, I grew up in Tasmania, is a small state off the bottom of, of Australia. So very quiet little country town. And I moved over to Melbourne when I was about 20. And I worked in corporate because I fell into corporate after school, I fell into working in the print industry, I was in sales, I was always business to business. I did a lot of networking. That was just where I went. That was never, it was never a passion, but I found my passion within that place. However, one day, because of some people I'd met through networking, I remember actually, someone come over from the States. And I was a part of this networking group called BNI, it's Business Networking International. It's all around the world. And somebody had come from the States and had visited our group. And we caught up and learn about each other's business. And I remember him saying to me, he was staying at this hotel that was right near a gym. And he said, there's this talk on this week that I think you would really love. It's about mental resilience, you should go. So I went. And it was Paul Taylor, who has been a guest on my podcast. Paul Taylor, he's a former British Navy aircrew officer. And his a neuroscientist, his a nutritionist, he's studying psychology at the moment, like he's just a prac-- He calls himself a pracademic, his academic, pracademic, does it, studies it, knows it, it's like, amazing. And so I've never been exposed to this type of, you know, mental resilience training or even really physical training to be honest, at that time, I was 29. And I went to this course and I learned all this stuff and I was like, wow. And then we went downstairs and we looked at this gym and the gym was accommodable. It was very forward thinking for its time. It was you know, astroturf and barefoot training and TRX and bodyweight movements, and very different to most gyms that you walk into. And then downstairs from there was the basement boxing gym. And we walked downstairs and there's this big poster on the wall with two corporate dudes wearing suits with shiny red boxing gloves on pretty much saying zero to hero, We'll teach you to box, we'll teach you to fight, you get in the ring, 12 weeks. Anyone can do it. And I just went Oh, can girls do this? That was my in you know, so I decided, I was a bit of an attention seeker. I like to do things that weren't typical that girls do I like to do. I think it was my way of, this was pre boxing Tiff, has been pre pandenmic Tiff, has been pre boxing Tiff, has been pre, there's been so many Tiffs over time, and I can't wait to see which ones roll out in years to come but, that pre boxing Tiff was, yeah, a bit of someone that likes to do things that made me stand out and very much often things that weren't typical for girls either. And I think it was my yearning to scream out that I was different and to be, to be different, to be significant, to be special, to be seen. And so I put my hand up for this boxing challenge. Never boxed before. To be honest, it's quite ludicrous to think that I would anyway. And then because I was you know, a bit of a chatty Cathy, I told everybody that would listen that they had to buy these tickets to this boxing event, it was a professional boxing fight, we're gonna be fighting in a black tie event, there's gonna be a thousand people, that it's going to be filmed and it's going to go live on Foxtel, me on television, all of the bells and whistles. You get registered as a professional fighter, it is, it's the real deal. So super exciting. I told everybody and sold everybody tickets. And then like maybe two or three weeks into training, we started doing the, start doing the you know, kind of learn how to do defense, learn some of this, some of this whole boxing thing that we're going to be doing in a few weeks, few weeks time. And I remember not being able to keep my eyes open and not being able to control my reaction to somebody just floating their glove out towards my face whilst I learned the movement of catching it. So it wasn't even a real punch yet it was just you know, the motions and it was so confronting, Susan. I had a knot in my throat and I was just waiting, in my head I was in a chaotic world. I was like, the minute we, this class finishes, I'm going to go get in my car and I'm going to cry my eyes out. This is so terrifying. What am I going to do? What am I supposed to tell everyone? I can't even keep my eyes open and no one's even punching me yet. So that was the like, the 12 weeks was that. The 12 weeks was uncomfortable, confronting. There was a constant stream of dialogue from that little inner critic that often said, and I think everyone's got one or has one or has experienced it at times at least, have that little voice on your shoulder going, you're the worst person at this. This is so embarrassing. What are you even doing here? Everybody thinks that you're a joke. The whole time, and then just turning up, just turning up anyway. And then changing the way that I socialized right? You know, like go out for dinner and you don't have a glass of red with you, with your steak because you've got to train for a fight and fighters don't drink alcohol when they're in a training camp. So there was this complete switch of everything I did. And then I stepped into the ring and it was terrifying. It was terrifying, the night before I didn't sleep, I'm so, I'm tighting the next night on one hour sleep just with adrenaline that had coursed through my body for a 24 hour period. I just, I couldn't communicate properly, I was jazzed. I've never felt anything like it before in my life. I've never put myself in a position like that. And I've said several times to several people that day I'll never, ever, ever do anything like this again. There's nothing in the world that could possibly be worth what I feel right now and I meant it. I get, when I, when I tell people this again every time I get goosebumps because I meant that I, there's nothing, there's nothing. Million dollars, any feeling, any, nothing. Anyway, we hop in, the whole world is watching and I jump in the ring and the music is on and punches are flying everywhere and some landing on me and I don't know what's happening and then next minute my hands in the air and, and the fight was over. And I remember first question I asked was, when's the next one? But the feeling of having done it anyway, the feeling of not even necessarily the win, the win was great, but the feeling of having done something despite those feelings of not wanting to and come out the other side. I had never known. Like I had never known a feeling so awful as the feeling before. I definitely never knew a feeling, that feeling of accomplishment coming out the other side and that, I mean that feeling but also the first few, like pennies that dropped in how that related to life changed, changed me, changed how I approach life or change the Tiff. There was, post boxing Tiff was born.

Susan Sly 15:15
And I, I love what you were speaking about, about being confronted. Right? And when we think about that, the confrontational nature of business and feeling like an imposter. And one of the conversations you and I have had is, when when I first came into the technology world, I didn't have a computer science degree, I hadn't coded anything. This is 2018. At the end of 2018. I hadn't coded a line of code since 1991 or '92, a long time ago. And there I was, it was me, and all men. And I kept, it was that voice, my friend, Matthew Ferry, I've got a great interview with him. He calls it the drunk monkey. And there was that drunk monkey on my shoulder saying, Who do you think you are? You didn't go to Carnegie Mellon, you don't have a computer science degree, you, you know, you're, you're barely learning the difference between a GPU and a CPU and, you know, what are you doing here? And it was this, it was this daily battle, looking at myself in the mirror, and going, damn it, you deserve to be here. You've earned the right to be here. They brought you in to help raise money, you helped them raise millions of dollars. That's what your entry card was into this arena. And now you're here and you have to learn it. And I love what you said about changing everything. I changed my whole life. I, you know, I had to existing businesses. And I rearranged my schedule so I could do more of the artificial intelligence startup and then going to MIT and doing all of those things. And you know, one of many things I love about you is having that conversation and saying, you know what, if you're going to make it, you're going to have some changes, you're going to confront all sorts of things that you didn't even think you still had to deal with. And then you have a decision. Do you freaking go for it anyway or do you contract and give up and have the red wine with your steak? So why didn't you give up? Because we see in business, 50% of people fail by year number five. Right? And, but you're not a quitter, why didn't you give up? A lot of people would have.

Tiffanee Cook 17:32
I feel like I, I had something to prove. And I had something to prove to me. And look, to be honest, Susan, I don't think at the time I even really knew, I couldn't articulate it. I didn't know what that was. But it started a journey of seriously deep self discovery. But the first thing, the first lesson, the first thing I remember standing out in the ring, watching other fights after I've had my fight, gone and had a, had a shower and popped a little dress on and grabbed the glass of sauv blanc and like, alright that's over, I got my trophy and I'll frock out now and be a lady. Which doesn't happen often. I remember standing, watching and in my head, I just thought, six, six minutes. That was over in six minutes. And I've worked for 12 weeks. That was over in six, very brief minutes. In those six minutes, nobody, aside from your friends that pat your back and go, Yay, nobody really cares. Doesn't make a difference to anyone, doesn't make a difference to really a lot of life. But for 12 weeks, there was all of that confrontation, all of that discomfort, all of that work, all of that change, sacrifice, sacrifice, sacrifice. Hearing, coming face to face with your inner critic, coming face to face with your you know, your demons and your stuff. And when, six minutes, that's the key like, anything in life is six minutes. Your six minutes has to mean something so profound to you. If it's a business, there'll be a six minute moment and there'll be a 12 week slog for anything. There's no, there's no just swooning in and landing on your feet without the 12 weeks and I don't know, for me that was, that was profound. For me that was a game changer because I was a bit of a fixed mindset kind of swooning. If I'm good at it, if I'm good at it someone will tell me and if I'm good at it, I'll do it but if I'm not good at it, well I won't do it. I'll go find something I'm good at. You know what I mean?

Susan Sly 19:16
Yeah, yeah, the perspective of time, you know how long we dedicate to something, right? And the saying, every, every master was once the disaster..., including me. So people look at, they look at you with, and we're gonna talk about this, you know, with your podcast, with your sponsors, with you know, now it's not just you trying to find guests. It's like people coming to you going, Can I be a guest? Can I be guest? And these are well known people. And how you do one thing is how you do everything. And the fact that you continue to say, Okay, yeah, all right, I don't know what I'm doing but I'm gonna apply myself and it's you know, 12 weeks of training, six minutes of pain, and then I can, you know, frock up and have my glass of wine and I'm off to the races and here I go again. The reason I wanted you to share that story is because I want to share in front of thousands of people who are listening the show, a way you changed my life and my perspective. So for, just to give context for everyone, this is the third time that Tiffanee and I've connected. We were connected through a mutual friend. And I was asking Tiffanee about when she started her show, and we're going to talk about this. And what she did, because I want to frame this in by saying that 90% or no sorry, 80%, Jordan Mendoza taught me this, 80% of podcasters haven't done a new show in the last 90 days. And I have a lot of people I know who are like, I'm gonna do a podcast and they'll record like five episodes and they never do any more. That's not what you did. So can you tell everyone? So you, you have your staycation. It's not Thailand but you come out of that and you decide you are going to start a podcast. How did you do it? What did you commit to because this is something I want everyone to hear. Because there is nothing half arsed. I want to keep my you know, good PG rating on my show. There's nothing half arsed about Tiffanee Cook. So tell everyone how you did it. Well, it is.

Tiffanee Cook 22:04
I love it. I love the story because I know, I know where I started. I know my capabilities. I know what I thought of my capabilities. I know, I know exactly where I was. And this was the same with boxing. I got excited. I get excited to train anyone. I get excited to talk about it because I was a nuffy. Like I, if I can, if I can do it and win titles, anyone can do it, right? This is the moment that boxing changed my whole realization about life, is the fact that everything is coachable, learnable and teachable, and anyone can do anything, should they a- believe in it and b- just just take action. So we were in the middle of the pandemic, I've started working with the Ambulance Victoria, I'd written up a contract so that I was doing online, for their wellness hub, we were doing some online coaching, I had some people do yoga and do Pilates and I will do the HIT training. And then I thought I just, I also am a real people person. I want, let's do a Friday get together. We'll have a cup of tea or a glass of wine. And we'll just check-- you know, we all connect because we don't just always, there were some people that maybe they don't want to do the fitness stuff with me, but they still need to connect with people. So Feel Good Friday was born. And after two Feel Good Fridays, I asked my best friend who does aroma therapy and beauty therapy. I said, Hey, do you want to come on and talk to my paramedics about some self care stuff they might be able to do at home? And so she came on and taught them. And then all of a sudden I had that as kind of sparked that idea. And I went, I've got some good contacts. I'm going to ask them if they'll come on and present to the paramedics. So I had Craig Harper, I had Paul Taylor, I had Bobby Cappuccio from LA, I had this whole range of people that I invited in. I had Sandra Pankhurst. She's just an incredible, people with incredible stories. Now I had them present to the paramedics and I realized that I was learning some skills. I was like, oh, I've never managed a conversation like this. I've never communicated a lot. This is like a news, almost podcasty. Maybe if I kept doing these, I'll always have the audio. I'll save the audio and when I've got 20 of most, start rolling them out once a week. And then in that period of time I'll start learning how to actually properly do a podcast. That was my thought process. Now, I have a friend who runs a podcasting company and they teach businesses how to podcast. You would think that I would ask you for advice but actually just borrowed her podcasting, like gear, her little recorder and microphones. And when we came out of one of our lock downs, I said to one of the guests, can you come to the gym and help me record a couple of episodes. Just want to have a practice and see what I can do and on, I remember driving to the, to the gym to meet him. And I thought of the name Roll With The Punches, or at that time it was rolling, rolling with the punches, which I ended up cutting short. And I thought that's a really cool and relevant name, obviously of my boxing background, but also because I want to talk about people that have done amazing stuff, maybe they've got through adversity, I want to look at that whole adversity concept. And also people that are just successful, how are people, you know, getting through this thing we call life? So thought of that name, and it was awesome. And then we get to the gym and I've set up the little tables are there's a professional microphones. Have a gym where Danny Green who's their world champion boxer, we have a mural of him in the background, so and I had the ring light and I'll take a nice selfie through the ring light because I'm excited. And it looked really cool. And then I was like, that looks so professional, which that is actually that selfie, funnily enough is the cover art for my podcast, just kind of laughable. Anyway, I got so excited about that. So I've been given this 15 minute, here's how you press record and then you record it and then the audios from the microphones is in on that little thing. And I was just too excited. So I did a Facebook post to everyone. Said this Roll With The Punches, keep your eyes peeled because there's a new podcast on the block. And it's here. And within two days I'd figured out, I don't know how because I'm not very IT. I definitely don't have the IT background that you do, miss. But I had figured out how to get the audio onto my computer, how to use audio editing software, use Adobe Audition. I don't even know how I figured all this stuff out. But I figured it out. And I made intro music and I got it on to iTunes and everything. And that was it. So the two things I wanted. I wanted to improve my communication skills, because presenting and speaking in running events was important to me. And it's something I've done for a little while, but I wanted to be better at it. But the other thing was I realized that with the Victorian ambulance and the network that I developed there, I had some leverage to improve my network. To network at a higher level than I already was. And I always valued the people in my network. I look at who surround me, I look at who I want to be like and whose energy is good. And I make sure they're the people that are in my circle or in my, my line of sight. So there were the things I focused on. And it wasn't, it wasn't a plan to, I'm going to have a podcast, it's going to have lots of listens, it was I'm going to self develop. And I'm going to use this platform to do it. Within seven weeks, I got an email saying, you're number eight on the charts. And I was like, What charts? What are the charts? Charts, there's charts, who are you? Who's this person emailing? And yeah, and I, you know, I started to learn about numbers and analytics. And it's incredible. So I'm up to a hundred. It's been over a year now, a year and maybe one or two months. And I'm up to Episode 190. I produce four episodes a week. And your episode was pretty amazing. Thank you. Everyone needs to go listen to it. Yeah, but within, I guess the lessons with that, within, within three months, I had learned. I sat back and went, Oh my goodness, I have learned more speaking to these people than I've ever learned doing anything. And because of the you know, my passion behind their stories, and what I was learning from them was so high, I was like, there's just understanding. There's a course where I could learn when I'm learning. It's been amazing. And the doors that have opened, you know, and now I am a podcast producer for, for someone who's, who's been my mentor and kind of what you know, my business idol for a few years, you know, by October. But I launched it in June, by October, he was ringing my phone saying, hey, I want to, I want you to be on my show once or twice a week. And then by the next you know, by the beginning of the next year, he said alright, I want you to officially come on board as one of our producers of the show. And you know like that. Geez, six, seven months before that, none of this was on the cards. It's just crazy, isn't it?

Susan Sly 29:27
Well, yeah, I mean, when you think about what you did, you dove in. And then you said I'm just gonna learn it. Right? I'm not afraid to get a little messy. And what was inspiring to me was you said, I am committed to this many shows a week no matter what. If I've got the sniffles, or I'm hungry or I'm having a wall kicking moment, I am doing, tell everyone how many shows, because most people don't get to 200 shows. They don't get to 20 shows. You are at almost 200 shows in a year. But tell everyone what your recording schedule is because that was what was inspiring to me.

Tiffanee Cook 30:10
So I record four shows a week. So I produce four shows a week. I also produce four shows on Craig's show a week. So now I'm producing eight shows a week. And the odd external one here and there for other people shows. It's just, it's my priority, because, and in between that the world opens up, and I still do training, I still work in the boxing gyms and I still do other stuff. But I just, this is so important to me in terms of my development. And I, I trust in that. I saw, every time you start something like boxing, or any or fitness, that's always easy to understand the fitness stuff. Every time you start something, the improvement gains are huge. And it's like weight loss, people that want to lose weight, oh, it's all exciting when you first start and it's like I'm dropping the cat, the kilos. And then you plateau. And the return diminishes, right? And that's a part of becoming elite at something. So within the first three months, I was like, ah, I can hear my own improvement. People are telling me, I'm blowing my own socks off, right? That all normalizes. And then six months down the track that's just normal now. Right? So my, so I think that's a really important thing to point out to people is, what is mind blowing today will just be normal tomorrow. So you can't always ride on that. There has to be a really strong 'why' behind it. But what it, what it affirmed with me is I trust that, you know, every single episode, I learn something, every single episode I improve. When I sit, and I co host, and I watch Craig hosting his show, and I'm watching two people communicating, I don't just go, I'm just sitting here. I'm watching two people, I'm watching another person that does what I do. And I'm going, What can I take out of this? What can I see when I don't have to be in the conversation as much? What can I observe in a way that I can maybe be better at something myself? How can, how is this different to the way I do things? What can I learn out of it? What do I like? What might be done or like, what you know, what can, and I think that's important.

Susan Sly 32:24
It's huge. It's huge. And now you have sponsors. I was looking on your website. How many sponsors do you have now for your show?

Tiffanee Cook 32:32
I've had, that's a good question. I think I've had about 12 or 14. Now I, that was another thing. I thought when I first started, be 12 or 18 months, I might be able to, if it, if it grows in 12 to 18 months, I might be able to get some sponsors. Month number two, I've got my first sponsor. And I haven't been without a sponsor since. So I've had, normally people sign up for eight week period. And they'll sponsor a number of episodes per week. There's different levels, but it is, yes, been amazing. You know, and the latest, you know, the last five or six have approached me. I haven't approached people for sponsorship. They've said hey, we'd like, what's the package here? How do we get involved? And I just wow, you know, it's amazing.

Susan Sly 33:22
It is amazing. And so I'll tell you a story based on our conversation. So between you and Rebecca Zung, right? So they, so here I was, and interviewing Tiffanee. And so if you're new to the show, you don't know the story, super quick. So I have two businesses. And then in late 2018, I co-found this AI company, and we you know, we start raising seed capital. And then the next thing you know, we're one of the hottest startups in our market. And then we're getting some national press and then we're, we signed an enterprise deal with a national retailer. And you know, it's just, and the valuations going up and we're in a you know, all this stuff is going on. And I feel like, Tiff I have all these plates in the air, you know, I have kids, I have, you know, my businesses, I have all my employees, I'm growing this company, we're now doing things I have never done in my life, which is like, you know, pitching venture capitalists. I can sell, I've done a lot of selling, it's no different but it was just like all this different stuff. And I had these VCs looking at me like, why do you have a podcast? Or why do you do this? I felt more scrutinized as a woman. Um, then I think you know, and I started to research you know, what other female CEOs have shows or they're posting on Instagram or whatever, and there aren't a lot. And I thought I have two choices. I can either shrink back and fall into a role that people you know, that is something people, doing it in a way people think I should do it. Or I can be a trailblazer. And I was like, of course, I'm gonna be a trailblazer, right? So what I decided to do after our conversation, so I saw you, I said, yeah, script. So I, you know, Monday through Friday, I'm the co-CEO of an artificial intelligence company, it's a lot. So what I said to my staff, I said, Listen, what I'm going to do, every second Saturday, I'm going to go get my hair blown out, because I don't like doing my own hair. And I'm going to shoot three to five YouTube videos at once. And instead of trying to think about what the topic should be, so answer the public or whatever, I have people write in a video idea. One of them was my dad, I did make him a video. And, and so I shoot them all. And I give them to the team and they add the B roll and everything. And now my youtube channel is growing and growing, growing. It's called Raw and Real Entrepreneurship. They're just short soundbite tips for people who are starting businesses, everything from tax planning to, you know, when is it time to hire a VA, you know, all of the things we want to know in business, it's kind of like one stop shopping, and then also interviews. And, and I was sitting there, and I want to publicly acknowledge you in front of, you know, 125 countries and all the people listening, because it was really, between you and Rebecca. And I watched Rebecca putting out five YouTube videos a week, and being a mom, and 50 million things going on, and I watched you go, Okay, yeah, I'm gonna do four shows a week. And I'm working, and I'm consulting, and I'm producing and I was like, you know what, it's so important, this, this consistency, when that fist is flying out your face, that or whatever it is, that you, no matter what's coming up, that you continue to go forward anyway, because you know, it's what you're supposed to be doing. So thank you, my love, I want to acknowledge you.

Tiffanee Cook 36:58
That means the world. Thank you so much.

Susan Sly 37:02
Your hair looks good in the videos.

Tiffanee Cook 37:05
I love that.I need, I need, yeah, I need to see that on the books. I always just pull mine back. Not a fan of doing my hair either. But I love when you just said then you know about just forging forward. In my first fight. I remembered for 20 or 30 seconds in. And there was this, you know, like, body's doing what's doing. I'm fighting but then this other part of my brain goes, Tiff, wow, this is a million times harder than anything you've ever done. Because you've got this adrenaline in your body, you're performing, you know, at a higher level. So when you've got adrenaline in your body, you're more powerful, you're more, you're sharper, you're, you're, you're in your primal zone. So your performance is increased. And your capacity is increased. And I remember I felt like, and it was 20 seconds, felt like a year. I thought, Oh, I can't keep up this pace. This is, this is ridiculous. I haven't like bah, bah, bah, bah, bah, bah, bah, I got it. I got to slow down a bit, throw less move more. And never a strong point, especially for fight number one. So I remember I thought I'll do. You know I tried to look and see what was coming and do things that are way out of my capacity at the time. And it was just like, bam, bam, bam, punch after punch. Okay, cool. Just keep doing what you don't. Offense is the best defense. So just keep, you'll learn along the way. But just keep doing what, keep taking the action you were taking, because that will work and refining stuff will come. But if I have chose to try and refined stuff, well just refine stuff. And if I'm not good at that, then I'll you know, I had to stick with what I was good at. And what I was good at was taking action. It was taking action that made me win it. Wasn't being talented. I wasn't talented. I was tough and resilient. And I had an attitude that was never going to quit. I had good endurance so I knew that when, if I can weather the same punches, I knew that for my size, my punches were harder. I knew that my work rate was higher and that it would, that I could outwork them. So they, I might have to wear a few punches. They won't be as hard as the ones I'm throwing but also these people are going to tire before me and that's the same in business. These people are just going to tire before me. And that refinement will come.

Susan Sly 39:25
These people are going to tire before me. I love that. Yeah. One of my mentors once said, Susan, you have to out habit your competition. Right? And it's the, it's, it might be the next sales call you make. It might be the next podcast you produce, the next YouTube video, the next, the whatever it is, you know. Right now we're pitching Radius to VCs. And it might be the next, and we have a lot of VCs interested but which are the right ones? So it's just you pitch and you pitch you go and you go with you go and then on Sunday, you lie down and you have a nice glass of wine and you go, Okay, that was good. Now we'll do it again. When Elon Musk was for a moment, the wealthiest man in the world, he tweeted, Okay, back to work. Right?

Tiffanee Cook 40:17
Yes. Yeah. Because we, I think we all think that we're, we're shooting for destination. And when we get there, we'll rest but nobody, I don't, I don't want to rest. Resting would be the end of me. I don't want to rest. I want to, I want to relish in the places I land. But I want to, you said it. You said in your podcast with me like your podcast is one that I will, it's one that I'll go back to and I'll listen to over and over because there was gold in that. There was gold. You're incredibly inspiring, but the one thing I remember and I have thought of so many times is, you referenced happening to move like a shark because if a shark stops moving shark dies, and oh God that resonated so much. I was like I am a shark. I have to keep moving, you know? And it's just being mindfull about things. It's the celebrating the wins is where I needed to pull in and do the work. Hey, don't forget to, don't forget to keep moving, glide along reminiscing about how far you going, how far you've come same time.

Susan Sly 41:25
You're so amazing. I can't wait until travel is a thing again. I don't know when that's going to be but I've missed Australia. I haven't been there in several years. And yeah, we were just talking before we went you know, live into recording. I was like, we should have a little series together. And maybe that's what the series is.

Tiffanee Cook 41:47
I think so. I think Yeah, let's do it.

Susan Sly 41:50
Yeah, I-- we could do a video series. Well, Harvey Mackay who's a friend of mine who wrote Swim With The Sharks Or Get Eaten Alive. Maybe we talk to Harvery and see what we can do with his shark theme. I don't know.

Tiffanee Cook 42:06
Hey, let me throw a question at you. I asked this. I asked this on my socials recently. What do you prefer? Big fish in a small pond or small fish in a big pond?

Susan Sly 42:17
Small fish in a big pond.

Tiffanee Cook 42:19
Atta a girl.

Susan Sly 42:20
Because when you put a small fish in a big pond, eventually it grows. And, um, you know, the, my, my in laws, they have this big pond in their backyard. And when my children were little every spring I would say okay, let's go to the pet store and we'll get some little goldfish. And the kids would watch the fish grow and grow and grow. And then in the winter, when the pond froze over the fish where they had dug themselves into the mud. And then the next year, they'd be even bigger, even bigger because the fish will always grow to the size of its pond.

Tiffanee Cook 42:58
Yes. I love that. I love that.

Susan Sly 43:02
So, anyway, I know that, you know, girl, we could talk for hours and hours. And I just love you to pieces. And thank you for being in my life. And for everyone listening, we would love a five star review because we ask for what we want. And if not, Tiffanee will hunt you down and you have to box with her.

Tiffanee Cook 43:25
True. I'm coming at you guys. Yeah,

Susan Sly 43:28
absolutely. And please check out her show Roll With The Punches. And for this show, share it on your social, tag us. And Tiffanee on Instagram is a great place to reach you as well?

Tiffanee Cook 43:42
Yeah, Instagram on all the socials. Roll With The Punches or Tiffanee Cook with the double E.

Susan Sly 43:49
Yeah, don't forget the double E. Tiffanee Cook with the double E on Instagram, on Twitter, and on Facebook, on LinkedIn. And so with that, Tiffanee, thank you so much for being here. You're amazing. And we will definitely catch up at a future show. And with that, thank you everyone for being here. God bless. Go rock your day and we will see you on a future episode of Raw and Real Entrepreneurship.

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Susan Sly

Author Susan Sly

Susan Sly is considered a thought leader in AI, award winning entrepreneur, keynote speaker, best-selling author, and tech investor. Susan has been featured on CNN, CNBC, Fox, Lifetime, ABC Family, and quoted in Forbes Online, Marketwatch, Yahoo Finance, and more. She is the mother of four and has been working in human potential for over two decades.

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