Posted on: May 13, 2020

With all the worries, confusion, and anxiety brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for you to effectively bring your best self and rise to the occasion has never been more important.

Now, more than ever, you as a business owner should be able to provide a clear sense of clarity and hope and be able to effectively bring your team together. To do that, there is one thing you need to master—YOU! To help you achieve some level of mastery over yourself, our very own Chris Arnold talked to his personal leadership coach, Terry Walling.

Terry has a resume that’s nothing less than awe-inspiring. Terry has 30 plus years of coaching experience under his belt. He is also the founder of Leader Breakthru, a coaching and training ministry/organization that helps leaders who are called to make a difference in their missional ministries, local churches, and the marketplace.

If you want to have a greater mastery over yourself and a better understanding of your destiny and what you are called to do as a leader and as a person, this episode is for you!

Key Takeaways

  • One of the key reasons he’s into coaching
  • What his personal life mandate is
  • What people need to understand about leadership
  • How he defines an influencer
  • One of the keys to influence
  • Stages of influence and what they look like
  • What convergence is
  • What transformations are
  • What happens when you skip a transition
  • How people can find him
  • One thing he’ll tell leaders in this time of uncertainty

RESOURCES:

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Episode Transcription

Chris Arnold:
I’m your host, Chris Arnold. And as a reminder, if I can do this, so can you. Man, I’m excited about our guest today. We talk a lot about real estate on tactics and strategies, but we’re going to hit on the topic that matters most and that’s leadership, because everything rises and falls on leadership. Companies do not fall apart for lack of strategy. They usually implode and they implode because the leader implodes. And my guest today, is actually my personal leadership coach. I’ve been working with Terry Walling for several months now. And so I’m excited to bring him on because he’s impacted my life. And I was like, Terry, we got to take what you’ve taught me over the last several months of you and I working one on one. And this message is so important. So Terry Walling, my man, welcome to the show.

Terry Walling:
Good to be with you, Dr. Arnold, not really, but Chris Arnold. And it has been my joy to walk alongside you and watch the incredible things that are happening to you, but also help you continue to move into your unique and ultimate contribution. So it’s great to be with you today.

Chris Arnold:
So let’s get a little background. People are like, who is Terry walling? Who’s the guy?

Terry Walling:
Absolutely.

Chris Arnold:
First of all, tell us how long you’ve been in the game of coaching, maybe a couple of books you’ve published and more importantly, I love your personal life mandate, your mission statement, your purpose statement [crosstalk 00:02:23].

Terry Walling:
I’ve been in the game for 30 years. So I was in coaching before coaching was cool and been alongside individuals to try to help them maximize their performance, to move beyond just where they think they are into, ultimately, where I think they’ve been designed to be as an individual and someone who contributes as a whole to society, especially for those in entrepreneurial type of work. So that’s what I’ve been doing for 30 years. I basically have been trained in the area of leadership development. A lot of people when they hear the word leadership development, they think recruiting and more leaders. I think what’s going on in the leader in order to actually help stimulate what could go on through that leader.
So the area of leadership development’s where I got my doctorate and along the way I found that some key concepts can unlock someone to go into a greater sense of understanding of really their sense of destiny. Why they’re on this planet and what it is that ultimately they’ve been wired to do and to be. And along the way, I’ve found some key elements that help that. One of the big ones is the idea of transitions, which I think we’ll talk about briefly in our time today. Wrote a book called Stuck. Stuck is basically talking about this in between period of time. Some of the most incredible moments in our lives are the moments when we are in between where we are and ultimately where we’re headed. That’s called a transition.

Chris Arnold:
Well said. I think a lot of people would say, that’s something I want to get out of. And what you’re saying is that’s a highly valuable place to be if you have the right perspective around it, which we’ll get into as well.

Terry Walling:
Exactly, exactly. And the difference between the leader and a follower is perspective. So having a perspective on your company is one thing, having a perspective on your development is another. Both are essential to actually move into ultimately what you’ve designed to do and to be. Part of my work is actually then to come alongside, not to actually invent your future, but help you discover your future. Here’s what I’ve discovered, whatever somebody discovers, they own, whatever they’re told, they resist. So one of the key reasons I’m into coaching is to help people better take responsibility for who they are and where they’re headed in the future and they themselves to discover the unique things that have happened in their life to help them move into ultimately the destiny of their life. How’s that?

Chris Arnold:
Good stuff. I’m about ready to unpack this. I know the audience wants to get into the meat, but right before we do, can you give your personal mandate, which I think sums up what you do. What’s your personal mandate? Bring it.

Terry Walling:
I resource and coach breakthrough in the lives of risk taking kingdom leaders. But in particular, I resource and coach breakthrough in those people who are like part of your audience, who are wanting and willing and desiring to get out on the edge and take a risk. Those people sometimes don’t get the help they need. And they are the very ones we need to actually keep moving into their groundbreaking work. So if you’re out there on a ledge, taking a risk, trying to do something that’s new, I’m there with you. And I want to try to be a coach to help those people succeed and move forward.

Chris Arnold:
And the thing I love is first of all, that’s a super cool personal life mandate, just hearing it. And number two, if you’re listening, how would you like the ability when someone asks you the question, what do you do? What is your purpose? To be able to say it with such simplicity, with such clarity and with such passion behind it and your ability to get to a place where you can articulate your entire life. That is a game changer. And that’s what Terry helps us get to as leaders. So let’s get to the meat. If you’re ready?

Terry Walling:
I’m ready, let’s roll.

Chris Arnold:
All right. We’re going to hit on three points, three things, around leadership that all of us need to understand. These are the things that you’ve taught us. So let’s start with number one. First of all, a foundational groundwork understanding of leadership. What do we need to understand about leadership 101?

Terry Walling:
The first major shift we got to make is that leadership is influenced by position. A lot of times we’ve been taught that if you have a position, you have the influence, and that actually works against us because then we get trapped into these pictures or these packages of what it is we should be. We need to first basically clean the slate and say leadership is influence. And with that, what we mean is that influence is being shaped over a lifetime. It is being shaped by a series of events and people and circumstance we encounter all the time. Understanding what’s happening to us, as we try to actually execute leadership for others, is essential if we’re going to understand ultimately our unique contribution and our legacy. So number one, leadership is influence and influence is shaped over a lifetime. So getting a big picture view of your life, stepping back sometimes, and looking at the totality of life gives you insights to where you’re headed in the future journey of your life.
So leadership development at its core is about influence. We pick a position to execute influence. We create the jobs, the titles, the things we are to execute our influence. It doesn’t give us the influence, the magic title or the thing we call ourselves. What gives us influence is the things that have been shaped inside of us and us executing according to those, being what we call a self-defined leader and executing a non anxious presence. I wish I would’ve wrote that. That comes from a guy named Edwin Friedman, the Failure of Nerve, incredible book, but he talks about understanding who you are, who you’re not, and now being okay with that. And beginning to understand more and more how you were able over your lifetime to be you, not be who you think you should be, not be who the culture wants you to be, but be and execute life out of your unique shaping over your lifetime. Foundation topic number one.

Chris Arnold:
Here’s a question. I’m listening and I’m like, okay, I get this philosophically, right? Leadership is not about title. It’s not about position. I get that. It’s about influence. Here’s the question I think we’re all asking, can you define influence? What does influence mean? Because I think that word is thrown around a lot. We have social media influencers. So how do you define an influencer from the perspective of what you’re talking about?

Terry Walling:
An influencer has the ability to help, primarily, another person understand and move into what’s next in their journey. And so primarily what I’m talking about is you are a person of influence, not if you can just sell a product. You’re a person of influence if you can link that product to that person’s need and help them realize it’s key to help them move forward as an individual. So when we say leadership’s influence, we’re talking about creating an environment where you actually help others understand their purpose and move in a greater way toward that and into that into the future. And influence is then not something that we’re selling. Influence is something we’re helping individuals discover. They discover the need for what we have. And then they pick up the things we’re selling or the resources to help them move into that need.

Chris Arnold:
Here’s what I like about what you’re saying, because your definition of influence is not self-serving.

Terry Walling:
Exactly.

Chris Arnold:
It’s actually selfless. And I think a lot of people, particularly in some of the influencing world, we all feel and can tell that that influence is driving a personal ambition. I am influencing you to feed something that I need, versus your perspective is that influence is not for me. Influence is for the betterment of those that I’m leading and that their eyes are following me.

Terry Walling:
And I think those that are built around just self serving, people can spot it. They can see it and they don’t want it. If they know that you’re just building your kingdom, they don’t want any part of it. They may nibble. They may bite, but in the end, but if they know you’re in it for them, and if they become convinced that what’s being transacted is not your newest, your latest and your greatest, but what’s being transacted through your relationship with them is something that helps advance them, they’re in. And they begin to understand the need for why they need an ongoing relationship with you. So one of the keys to influence is not you’re able to sell a product. One of the keys to influence is you’re able to actually transact a relationship, build what I call the trust bridge. And those are the people that end up coming back to you because they know you’re in it for them, not for you.

Chris Arnold:
And I definitely have to pause. And this is for wholesaling Inc. The reason I joined is because when I got to know Tom Krol and Cody Hofhine and Brent Daniels, and now Lauren Hardy, I realized quickly that they had built this thing for the betterment of everyone around them. It oozes out of the Wholesaling Inc culture from a leadership perspective. I can’t tell you how much, when you sit down with Tom it’s student first, it’s student first. It’s about moving the student down the field, whatever it takes. And I believe that’s why the Wholesaling Inc community has become so powerful, because that influence is focused on giving, not taking. So what you’re saying is powerful.
Let’s go to number two. There are stages of influence. Help us understand what these stages look like throughout the leader’s journey.

Terry Walling:
Number one, you buy our foundation and our premise and you basically say, “Okay, I’m in,” it’s lifetime. It’s not just the current thing I’m facing, but it’s lifetime. And you go big picture. You see three major stages. There are three major development stages in route to this thing called legacy. So something you’ll leave behind that’ll outlive yourself.
So the first one is calling, the idea of mission, clarifying the direction of your life. Where are you headed? What is it that’s important? And calling really has been confused. Calling is just simply understand direction and values. Where am I headed in my life? And what’s most important? What a lot of people do though, is they leave it there, Chris. And what happens is they end up plateauing. They end up starting an organization then that they got to keep sustaining and they end up getting themselves lost in the midst of all of the complexities of things.
And what they don’t understand is there’s a mid stage. And the mid stage is something called contribution. Contribution has to do with two major things, your major role, clarity on what you do, and something called your effective methods. Clarity on how you do it. In other words, when you walk into a room, when you walk into a meeting, when you walk into a situation, what is it that you actually contribute to that place? And do you understand what that is? And almost like a heads, tails issue on a coin on the flip side of it, do you understand how you actually do that? That’s called contribution.
And because most individuals plateau and arrest in their development, instead of moving forward, what happens is contribution gets lost. They get lost in complexity. So somewhere in the mid game, usually 40s, 50s, somewhere along there, somebody even early 60s, you’ve got to step back and say, wait a minute. Here it is. Of all the things I could do, what should I do? And now here’s the goal in contribution. Are you ready? In contribution is how do I say no, so I can say, yes? What’s my decision making grid. So you like my statement. I resource and coach breakthrough in the lives of risk taking leaders. You like that. I like that. It actually took me a while to get that. It rolls off my tongue because it’s the very thing I use, watch this now, to decide the things I’m not going to do and help me decide the things I must do.

Chris Arnold:
Whoo. That’s good.

Terry Walling:
That’s mid game. That is mid game. That’s contribution. Now, if a person is willing to make… And the critical thing in the mid game is choices. By the way, you’re not going to get to the end and have a legacy if you don’t make choices. That’s why you need a decision making grid. And that takes us to the third stage, which is convergence.
Convergence is kind of that moment for this I was born. Now you have mini, M-I-N-I, convergences along the way. But the bottom line is convergence is a period of time when it all starts to come together. When who you are meets what you do and all of a sudden you realize, okay, this is it. I found it. I’m going to do it. And I’m now going to understand it to the point, that’s why you needed contributions, so I can give it to others. And as you actually have that mentality, all of a sudden the incredible thing, Chris, is you are able to live a life that lives beyond your life.
You give what you have, and you actually teach others, watch this now, to actually do it better than you, which gives you that sense of fulfillment and purpose. Not that you did it. Now, they’re able to do it. And now you have a sense of destiny in your life. By the way, one of the things I say is, “It doesn’t actually prove anything that you can do it.” And we spend most of our life trying to prove we can do it, right. But the bottom line is, can they do it? And, can they do it better? That’s where fulfillment comes in. That’s where that sense of sitting back and saying, “Okay, this life was worth living. And I had a shot to live it.”

Chris Arnold:
There’s a lot of meat on that bone. Let’s unpack this, or let’s summarize this a little bit because it’s powerful.
So as we’re saying, stage number one is calling, right. We could sum that up. That’s me saying yes to a direction. So if you’re listening, you might go, “I feel called to be an entrepreneur or to be a real estate investor.” You might have the reasons you want behind that. But you’re saying yes to this thing, I’m going to go for it. And that’s a direction. Now that’s a really vague thing, but at least you’re moving toward a particular destination.

Terry Walling:
It gets you, what I say on the road, on the path.

Chris Arnold:
I like it.

Terry Walling:
Even if you’re in one job right now and you know it’s real estate, all of a sudden it lifts your eyes and you start walking down that road. Correct.

Chris Arnold:
And so some people are in that stage right now of saying yes to the calling or have been saying yes to the calling for awhile and as we’re saying that, you’re like, “That’s me.” Then you go into, as you said, stage two, which is contribution. And that’s me really beginning to refine to what specifically I need to do. And rather than going and saying yes to this direction, now I begin to niche down and say no to all the things that might take me away from my essential focus. So an example might be is, now I’m in real estate. I’m going to say no. And here’s, I can tell you the biggest problem, to all these other shiny objects out there, all of these things pulling on my attention, because there’s some things that I want to do or can do, but now I got to focus down on what I need to do.

Terry Walling:
Absolutely. You nailed it. You nailed it right there. I can do those things. I’m actually saying no to good in order to say yes to best.

Chris Arnold:
Bam, that’s it.

Terry Walling:
And that is critical because that requires choices. You may have to walk away from a deal in order to actually see the opportunity for many more deals, but more down the track, that’s tied to your unique contribution. And there are a lot of dead ends in the mid game.

Chris Arnold:
And then finally is convergence, right? That’s where all of your experiences, all your gifts, all of your talents come together and you have what would be called your ultimate contribution, right?

Terry Walling:
Right.

Chris Arnold:
That is the place that you are truly in what we would call your genius zone. You’re unique ability.

Terry Walling:
Other words on it, sweet spot. And here’s the interesting thing, at that point you’re the resource, not all the goodies you offer, you’re the resource. You’re in your sweet spot. And you’re not actually trying anymore. It’s just happening. But here’s the key, Chris, it happened because you made earlier choices to get to that point. And so that’s why some individuals actually start really well and finish well, because they don’t have the courage in the mid game to make the choices necessary, to move from what they can do to what they must do.

Chris Arnold:
Powerful, powerful.

Terry Walling:
Boom.

Chris Arnold:
Let’s bring this last point home. We talked about and defined what leadership is. We now have a framework to look at our life from a leadership perspective, the three mile markers, we might call those. Now let’s talk about these things called transitions. Let’s let’s bring it home. What is this?

Terry Walling:
Yeah. Transitions are, let me just give you this easy definition. Transition is you don’t quite know where you’re going, but you know you can’t go back to where you’ve been. If you are in that state, in that moment, that is called a transition. And we’re not talking just about vocational transitions here, we’re talking about development transitions. We’re talking about you basically understanding something new is occurring. Now here’s the problem with transitions. They’re not a bad weekend or they’re not a terrible sales meeting, or they’re not just a one off thing. They take some time. And so your audience is going to love the fact, when I tell you that transitions can go three months, even three years. They’re an in between period of time.
And the purpose of those is threefold. One, to collect and understand the lessons from the past. Two, to grow in your own personal self awareness and who you are. And three, better define that influence that you offer people. So if you skip a transition, you miss incredible things you need for the next chapter in your development. See what transitions are, are the glue, almost like the in between moments in a book chapter, from one chapter to the next. You get to the next chapter with what you need, if you navigate the transition well.
So here’s what I tell people, ready? If you get to a transition, they hate me for this, they actually want to come after me, even with Zoom, basically what I say to them is get all you can out of your transition. Quit fighting this transition and instead do those three things I said and get all you can out of a transition. Because, here’s what they want to know, they come to an end, but here’s the problem, then you have what you have. So if you spent the time investing and getting all you can and understand what’s going on, what are my lessons from the past? What is it saying about my influence? If you work on those things in a transition, you will have the tool you need to move into the future.
One way I describe it, Chris, is like a backpack. You can’t take everything into the next chapter. So it’s unloading the things that you actually don’t need and putting the new things that you do need and then scaling the mountain for the next chapter that’s ahead. So transitions actually are one of the most powerful tools in that shaping, ongoing, lifelong formation process we’re talking about when we use the word leadership development.

Chris Arnold:
Absolutely. Now, let’s bring this home personally. When I called you, and I reached out to you because of pain because I felt I was stuck. I felt, or I knew, that I was going through, again, call it a valley, might be what someone might call it, call it a transition. And I knew that as you said, I couldn’t go back. I need to move forward, but I’m not getting everything I need to unlock this new level. And I came to you going, “Terry, what is going on?” Because here’s what it feels like in a transition, I’ll describe how I felt, confused, discouraged, uncertain, self doubting, God doubting.

Terry Walling:
Yes, absolutely. No, absolutely.

Chris Arnold:
And here, if I could define it all in one sentence, I might ask the question this way, “What the hell is going on?” I don’t need this.

Terry Walling:
Absolutely.

Chris Arnold:
What the hell is this?

Terry Walling:
And in other words, you have those things and they persist, over time. Where I got you is where I get most people. They have tried everything they can to solve it.

Chris Arnold:
And it just makes it worse, that’s the problem.

Terry Walling:
Everything they know. And it makes it worse. It actually intensifies the transition. It doesn’t solve the transition. It intensifies the transition. So I get people early stage in a transition, but they’re already well into it. And some of your listeners are well into a transition right now going, “I don’t know what to try next. I don’t know what to do next. I don’t know how to sort this out.” And what I’m telling them is you could be at the greatest moment of your development, even though it feels like you are in a cloud of uncertainty and don’t know which way forward. Every characteristic you define is part of a transition and it’s ongoing, in an individual’s life.

Chris Arnold:
Let me plant some hope here, because you might be where I was going through transition. You’re like, “Okay, you guys are telling me this transition’s a hell hole. So what am I supposed to do?” I’d like to say two things. Number one, know and understand that on the other side of the transition is a new level. And it’s like getting through the storm and getting to the other side to new clear blue skies, sunshine, a new hype on the mountain. Let’s call it, getting it to the apex of the mountain, whatever. You got through the storm, you got to the top and at the top, you’re now getting an entirely different view of the world and your life below.
So the first thing I’d like to plant hope for anyone listening is, there is a gold on the other side of the transition. And then the second thing that I took away from this whole process was, I’m not to meant to walk through a transition alone. There’s actually a methodical way to go through this. I’m not meant to do this in isolation. And one of the best things that I did was I found someone like you, Terry, that could help put language and make sense to all this. And then all of a sudden I’m like, “Now I understand what I’m happening. I’m in a transition.” So take, let’s get everything out of this because at least I can define what this is, because before it just seemed like an absolute, I’ll say it, shitshow. That’s how it felt.

Terry Walling:
Absolutely. And exactly what you’re talking about. Here’s one of the greatest hope. The greatest hope for your people is this thing has a name. It’s called a transition. It has a journey. There’s a way to get through it. It is trying to actually take you to the next level of your influence. There have some hope, but I say you don’t get to clarity alone. Coaching sometimes can be seen as people… Coaching’s for people who aren’t cutting it. What I tell people is coaches are for people who want to cut it, who want to break through, who want to move forward. And if you have somebody walking alongside you and you know this thing has a name, you will get all you can and you will take new things in the future that’ll take you to new levels of your leadership and your influence. It is possible.

Chris Arnold:
And if you’re listening, I hope you get this because it’s life changing. And I’m saying that because everything we’re talking about, and now the understanding that Terry has given me, has been life changing from my leadership journey. I absolutely love it. And Terry, I just want to thank you publicly, as all the thousands of people that are listening to this, thank you for developing the skill that you have to be able to walk leaders like us through this journey. I love your calling and thank you for the impact you had on my life because where I started with you and where I’m at now are 180, night and day, and now I have the joy and the excitement on the other side. And I want to thank you for that.

Terry Walling:
Oh, you are welcome.

Chris Arnold:
So, if somebody is listening and they’re going, “You know what? I’m listening and I feel like I’m in tears because this is the first time I’ve gotten hope around this. Everything you guys are saying is resonating with me. How do I get ahold of Terry? Does Terry coach people through this process and so forth?” Yes he does. As I mentioned, he’s my coach. I’m still coaching with him, even though I’m out of transition because I’m just like, “I’m keeping this guy around for awhile because it’s continually good.” How do people find you?

Terry Walling:
Well, www.leaderbreakthru.com is our website, all one word, leaderbreakthru and the through is T-H-R-U.com. You can also find me up on Amazon, if you want the book Stuck, to first take a look at it, to see if it’s got any credence. It describes a transition. It gives you a pathway through a transition. It describes those three major stages that we talked about and it could probably lay some groundwork for you if that would help you to at least see it. And it’s also in both written and in Kindle form.

Chris Arnold:
Absolutely. So go to leadership breakthrough-

Terry Walling:
Leaderbreakthru.

Chris Arnold:
Leaderbreakthru.

Speaker 1:
That’s fine.

Chris Arnold:
T-H-R-U.

Speaker 1:
Leaderbreakthu.com.

Chris Arnold:
Got it. Got it. Leaderbreakthru.com. Perfect.
Well, let’s wrap up real quickly. I want to ask one last question and this is dealing with current circumstances right now. What is the one thing you would tell leaders right now for us to sink our teeth in going through the current environment that we’re all having to lead through. There’s fear, there’s uncertainty, there’s confusion, there’s all that stuff. What’s the one nugget you’d give us?

Terry Walling:
Lean in. Quit leaning away from and trying to cope and lean into these circumstances. There’s stuff in this moment that actually can be used to take you to the next level. Quit resisting our moment, get all you can, almost just like a transition, out of that moment. I want you to think about this. This all happened on our watch. So there is some kind of purpose of why we’re here and why this is happening. So leader understand the game change for the future.

Chris Arnold:
Absolutely. Absolutely. So Terry, thank you so much for your time. I appreciate it. Thank you for that last nugget of leaning in. As always, if you’re listening and you want to know more about advertising on the radio, which again, we still have students coming in, it’s effective. It’s working. As a reminder, you can always go schedule a call at wholesalinginc.com/reiradio. Again, that’s wholesalinginc.com/reiradio to learn more about radio.
And I haven’t ever said this, but I’m going to say this, this is an episode you need to take and share right now. So if you’re listening and you know someone that could use this, it’s one thing for us to talk about strategy. It’s another to talk about a philosophy that could really speak to somebody right now that’s hurting. So if you know someone that could hear this, pass this message on, and as always, if you want to see this, you want to see Terry, you want see me, you can definitely go to YouTube and watch it and subscribe to my channel at Chris Arnold Real Estate. Because it’s always cool to be able to actually see the faces. All right, thank you guys so much. Thank you, Terry. We’ll talk to you later.

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