Evan Brand is a Health Detective and Wellness Expert helping people not only achieve health, but happiness as well. Nature immersion plays a key role in human performance and entrepreneurial creativity for himself and the thousands of weekly listeners of his Not Just Paleo Podcast.
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Worst Entrepreneur moment
- Evan had the App idea that would make him rich. He lined up an investor, was ready for takeoff, then KERPLUT. His investor claimed the idea as his own, said he would sue Evan if he continued, and acted like he meant it. What did Evan do? Listen up…
Entrepreneur AH-HA Moment
- Evan finally took the leap and made his first sale – then, everything changed!
What has you FIRED up?
- The not just paleo academy!
Small Business Resource
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Best Business Book
- The Edge Effect by Eric R. Braverman
John: Evan is a health detective and wellness expert helping people not only achieve health but happiness as well. Nature immersion plays a key role in human performance in entrepreneurial creativity for himself in the thousands of weekly listeners of his not just paleo podcast. So Evan, say what's up with the Fire Nation and take a minute to share what's going on in your world.
Evan: Hey, Fire Nation, I hope you're having a great day because I was outside just thinking about this interview and I was thinking you know what, for me to be focused, I need to make sure that I kind of take my own medicine and take my own advice so I just got back from a 30-minute hike which is sort of what I'm all about, getting people back outdoors and understanding that everything outside is how we live our lives. So what I mean by that is your water, you have drinking water available because somewhere out in nature, it was captured and put into a bottle and delivered to a store.
You have organic food in your fridge hopefully because it was delivered and picked and grown by someone. So I'm trying to get people to understand that. I really appreciate life and earth itself is such a magical place and if you're trapped behind a desk or in a concrete jungle all the time, it's so easy to forget that and I just want people to understand that there's so much more complexity and beauty that's out there. We just have to kind of tune our radios to sense it.
John: Evan, there's so much I love about what you're saying and to be honest with Fire Nation, they might be getting a little tired of me talking about this recently because for so long when I was building up the business of entrepreneur on fire, I was so business-focused. I was so building up the brand of entrepreneur on fire and everything about it that I did kind of let that side of life slip, that nature, that organic, just understanding the connection that we have.
As you guys talked a little bit about in the preview chat, you know, now that I have a mentor in the Finnis realm, Sean Stevenson, it's all changed and for me, I'm outside every day. I do a 35-minute walk before I do anything else right here on the bay in San Diego and I'm huge about that. So I'm really excited to bring you on today to talk about your entrepreneurial journey but specifically how that ties in with nature, with health, with fitness and with all of this stuff but before we get into all that, Evan, I'm going to dive into your mind.
I call this the one-minute mind sex. I wanna get five insights into your mind and I'm really curious about question number one because I know how key the first 80 minutes of most health and fitness people are so ideally, what does the first 80 minutes of your day look like?
Evan: I'm guessing I'm gonna sound like a broken record. It's 903 or something crazy episode you've said.
Evan: 913, good lord, okay, so gratitude, why gratitude? Well, like I said life is a blessing and it's so easy to forget that when you feel like you have to immediately jump on social media so I avoid as much as possible social media in the first 80 minutes of my day. I prefer to just wake up in bed and I'll pull out an acupressure mat, a few days a week. What is an acupressure mat? It's essentially sort of like acupuncture like you're not actually getting punctured, you're just getting poked sort of with a little bed of plastic spikes and you lay on this in your bed. You can do this before bed to help increase your sleep quality but I like to do it in the morning just to make sure I'm in a relaxed sort of meditative state to start the day.
So I lay on that for five or 10 minutes or so. This also helps with low back pain, muscle tension, things like that. Usually wake up, I'm not a coffee drinker but I do like matcha which is according to who you ask, 100 times more powerful in terms of any oxidants than green tea so I'll make a half teaspoon of matcha tea, put a little bit of raw honey in there, drink that and then once I feel like I've gotten some brain juice on a piece of paper whether it's a new t-shirt design or a new podcast topic then I'll hit the email inbox and then go from there.
John: Love that. I mean you are taking control of your day. I mean you are not just going to responsive mode right from day one you're saying. How can I set my mind to my body, everything about what I'm doing for success and quick question about that drink, what was the name of it again?
Evan: Yeah, it's called matcha. So it comes from the same plant as green tea. It's just a baby leaf and you're consuming the whole leaf so that's spelled M A T C H A and you wanna make sure that you're getting organic ceremonial grade matcha if you're gonna consume it.
John: I wanna get the link of something you recommend, somewhere you grab that from after this in Fire Nation. It'll be in the show notes. Evan, does it have caffeine?
Evan: It does have a little bit of caffeine, yes, but I've successfully removed some of my clients off of coffee on to matcha because you have a little bit of caffeine but you have an amino acid L-threonine which calms the mind and helps you stay focused so balances the caffeine out and John, one other thing I wanted to mention about my day and I've written an article about this and it's called trash your alarm clock to start your day with inner peace and I'm not, I'm telling you that basically as click bait so you'll click in and then I tell you that I don't want you to throw away your alarm clock but I want you to A, don't put your cellphone near your head but B, to switch your alarm tone.
I've had friends that have like nuclear bomb alarm tones and that's ridiculous. Switch it over to something peaceful. Android and iPhone, they're both capable of having birds and peaceful orchestra music or whatever it is but you do not wanna initiate the fight or flight as soon as you wake up so find a peaceful tone on your alarm clock and change it to that immediately.
John: I find myself going to bed stressed out when I know that my alarm clock is that like fire alarm. I'm terrified about going to sleep because I know what it's gonna be like when I wake up but I'll tell you, another game changer for me, I just love this topic so much so let's just you know, chill out for a second here. Sleep cycle has been a game changer for me. I put my phone to airplane mode so there's no signals going around and I have it so I just said hey, wake me up between 5:00 and 5:30, whenever it's right for my sleep cycle and it's like this little chirping bird like it starts quietly like chirp, chirp, chirp, chirp and then slowly goes louder.
So I like barely wake up, I feel like I'm just kind of opening my eyes up naturally almost like it's been amazing, highly recommend it, Fire Nation. We'll have this on the show notes page but I do wanna drive forward, my friends because I wanna know what your biggest weakness as an entrepreneur is.
Evan: Honestly probably just the shiny object syndrome. I mean there's so much money by teaching people how to make money and there's always a new product out, right? Whether it's something that's gonna help you tackle emails better or something that's gonna help you podcast better or something that's gonna help you do social media better and to be honest with you, I've become sort of a minimalist because of this, because I know this weakness where I see a new product, I'm like man, I need this to make my podcast better. I need this to make my social media life easier and to be honest, there's some good opportunities and there's some good resources that I will provide one later but to be honest, a lot of people need to just focus on doing the work.
You need to focus on your content. Who cares about if you can optimize your podcast and go from 100 downloads to 1,000, you need to be reaching out to other podcast hosts and other guest blogs and whatever making you go from 100 to 10,000. You know, that's more important and that's gonna happen faster by you know, crunching down and doing the work as opposed to looking for a tool to optimize the current level of success that you have.
John: Evan eats what he cooks, Fire Nation. That's why he's an entrepreneur on fire right now and I call this the weapons of mass distraction, Evan, where people just get to distracted by so many of the different tools that are just available to like you said, optimize this, productivity that, whatever that can be, Fire Nation finds at the core, what you need to do and drive forward with that. So, Evan, what's your biggest strength?
Evan: I would say probably just blind faith. I say that just because I feel like at a certain point, I mean success is very paradoxical. You could feel like you're gonna fail and you have to go, you're about to have to go work at the mail room and at the same time you feel like you're on the verge of a new million dollar product and entrepreneurship is very paradoxical and people need to accept that. For me, the strength is blind faith because I just keep pushing forward and if something doesn't work, you have to keep going.
There's a really funny skit. There's a lot of cussing involved but I don't know if you've seen it, John. It's Kat Williams and he's got some --
John: I don't think so.
Evan: He's a hilarious comedian. I think he's in some legal trouble now but anyway, there's this clip on YouTube about him trying things and it doesn't work and I can't even think of the name of the clip but people just look up Kat Williams, you'll find it eventually and this clip is just, it sums up exactly what I'm trying to express is that I just keep plugging in new pieces and pulling out new pieces every day. I mean this whole thing is a puzzle.
John: Blind faith, Fire Nation, and Kat Williams on YouTube, and Evan, let's be honest, you have a lot of amazing habits. We could talk a whole episode about the good habits you have but what's a habit that you wish you had?
Evan: I would say to not be so hard on myself. I mean there's no one out there that beats me up more than myself. I mean you'll get some haters whether it's on YouTube or mail or whatever. I'm particularly pretty low in the hater category for some reason, I don't know. So that's a good thing but I'm harder on myself than anybody and I'm constantly thinking you know, if I sold 100 books of my sleep book, then I need to sell 1,000 and if I sell 1,000, now I need to sell 5,000 and so at a certain point, it's great to always push forward but I wish I were able to just stop and pause and just be like man, this is great.
Oftentimes when I go out for a walk in nature, I'll finally get smack in the head whether it's with a branch or if it's just my ego being dominated by nature, being humbled but that's just sort of a work in progress for me right now.
John: Fire Nation, so often we are our own worse critic. Why not just take a step back, a deep breath, and start becoming our own biggest advocate. Just try that for a week to see how that feels and settle into that. Maybe even make it a habit of being your own biggest advocate. It could truly do wonders and Evan, you have a lot of things to be excited about right now but what's the one thing that has you most fired up?
Evan: I would say it's this academy that I created. It's called the Not Just Paleo Academy and it's because I’ve been doing this for a few years now. I struggled with my health through college and basically destroyed my health and of course a crappy diet and a poor relationship with stress and that's even more important now as an entrepreneur but this academy is just sort of the creation and distillation of 100 plus health experts, doctors, and people like even Sean Stevenson who's been in my show, you know, I've distilled all their information and combined it with my own and made a six-week health and happiness program so that's what it is.
It's called the academy and I'm just super thrilled to be able to even come up with enough information to make people not feel overwhelmed, you know. It's so hard. There's a fine line between too much information and not being able to digest it. So, that's what I'm pumped about.
John: The Not Just Paleo Academy and Evan, to get there where you can actually have an academy, you had to first go on a journey, a journey of discovering, a journey of knowledge and learning and failing and that's what I wanna talk about next. I want you to share with us, Fire Nation, what you would consider your worst entrepreneurial moment in this journey that you've been on but Evan, really take us there. Take us to that moment in time and tell us that story.
Evan: Sure. So we'll have to go back before Not Just Paleo even existed. I was working at UPS third shift to pay for college. I went to business school at University of Louisville, it's pretty much a waste of time to be honest with you and so I was, I had this idea of this app and it was called Bloopy and it was a social polling app. I figured that if I could get people addicted to their phones by helping people make decisions, we're such indecisive creatures that this app was, I won't give, maybe I'll give the full details, maybe somebody can make it and give me credit.
So here was the idea. Basically you would go down on your contact list and there'd be a little dot next to your name and I'd see John posted up something. He needs help. Should he eat Subway or should he just make an organic meal at home? Obviously I'd click the organic meal at home and boom, and now you get your answer and it's just a fun way for people to vote. So anyway, I teamed up with this guy who I was working with and he was supposed to be helping me find a web designer and all that and we, I ended up going and presenting in a couple different venture clubs and I had a $50,000.00 investor ready to write a check and I was thrilled.
I'm like okay, this is great. I already found the app developer, you know, this is gonna go, we had promotional material on the way and then this guy who happened to have the name John literally, he said Evan, if you continue with this idea, I'm gonna sue you. He goes I want this app. This is my idea and I said John, it's not your idea. You helped me but you know, this is sort of my baby, you know. You can't really do that to me, man and long story short, I just let the thing go.
I said I don't know how serious this dude is, what type of resources, I had no legal advice at the time and I didn't even know what I was doing. I was just a guy with an idea and had a guy who wanted to give me some money to do it and so I just let it go and I don't know if it ever would've happened or what but I let it go and that was the moment where I just became overwhelmed and I was just like man, this entrepreneur thing, it's so hard. Who do you trust? Who don't you trust? How do you navigate the world of legal trouble? So it was a really big I guess failure or low moment for me but you know, look where we are now.
John: Yeah, a lot of people don't bounce back from that, Evan, which is why I think it's a really valuable story. Sometimes people get burned once and they just put that as an overall taint on the entire industry and never come back and it's really sad because look at what you have done and you know, I've been pretty obsessed with Downton Abbey over the past few months so I'll just kind of use a little phrase there. I'm sure that that guy got his come uppets, you know. He definitely deserved whatever he got and I'm sure that's karma was not working in his favor from that point forward.
Evan, your story tell all my friends, I want you to take that and move forward into another story and this one's gonna be of an a-ha moment, of a light bulb that went on at some point in your journey. So, you've had a lot of them. Again some haven't worked out like that app but you've had a lot that have. Tell Fire Nation one that you think is gonna impact our listeners of one of those moments, walk us through that story and take us home.
Evan: Sure. I would say that was the night that I launched my first book on sleep and so I did a webinar for it. I may have even been inspired by you, John. I can't remember so thank you for that.
John: I'll take all the credit for this.
Evan: Okay, yeah. I think it was you who recommended doing a webinar and so I was launching this eBook. It's called REM Rehab. It's like a guide on sleep. It's an eBook and then you get interviews with some health experts and so I was pretty nervous about launching just because I felt like there was always something to be added. I've heard that if you're not embarrassed with your first launch, something like that, that it's not good enough for your, or you waited too long, something like that so anyway, so I did this webinar and I haven't had any sales the entire webinar and I promoted it and did everything. I thought all the right steps, you know. I followed this little method that you're supposed to take, right?
You're gonna convert a million people and so anyway, we actually did have about 100 people show up to the webinar which was incredible for a first one and so at the very end, I forgot that there was people that couldn't see the screen because they were on their phone or something like that and so I put it up on the chat box. I put the link to the REM Rehab right in the chat and people like oh, thank god, I was wondering how to get to it. I realized they didn't even say the URL don't think the entire webinar.
So as soon as I put that link there, boom, I think there was like three sales within like five seconds and that was my a-ha moment. I was like oh, my god, this is amazing. You really can make money by helping people become healthier. This is beautiful and I probably jumped up and hugged my wife. I can't remember what I did after that but that's my moment.
John: I can tell you, Fire Nation from experience firsthand and then from Evan's experience, I mean sometimes it's just that first sale, that first client, that first person that says you know what, whatever you're saying in that value you're going to provide is worth my hard-earned money. That makes all the difference in the world and you're never ever gonna get to that point until you put yourself out there and take the necessary steps to do that webinar, to create that product, to put it up, to drive Facebook ads, whatever it's going to be, you're never gonna get to that moment.
Evan, that's what I really want our listeners, Fire Nation, to be focused in on is that first action step is of such criticalness that you can't get anywhere without that but what do you, in just one sentence, wanna let our listeners know from your experience from both your failure and that a-ha moment, you wanna make sure we really understand as entrepreneurs?
Evan: If you don't believe in yourself, nobody will.
John: Not even your wife?
Evan: Probably not.
John: No, it's so true, Fire Nation. The start and the confidence in what you're doing, it comes from within. That has to come from within and Evan, we have a lot of stuff I still wanna be talking about with you right now and really excited about dieting and [inaudible] [00:19:31] around with you but before we do, let's take a minute to thank our sponsors.
Evan, welcome to the lightning rounds where you get to share incredible resources in mind-blowing answers. Sound like a plan?
Evan: Let's do it.
John: What was holding you back from becoming an entrepreneur?
Evan: Probably just fear of failure, I thought that I could make something and that people would never come because the internet's too big.
John: What is the best advice you've ever received?
Evan: Just to be kind to other people and just to treat people how you wanna be treated, I mean that's huge online when all it is is digital words and the emotion is generally lost.
John: What's a personal habit you do have that you believe contributes to your success?
Evan: Going outside whether it's out in the forest or just walking my dog, just getting outdoors and looking at the trees and looking at flowers and realizing that life is a beautiful thing. That's a super helpful habit.
John: Do you have an internet resource like in Ever Notes that you can share with our listeners?
Evan: Actually I wanted to recommend Pop Clip. This thing is super helpful. I have it on Mac. I'm not sure if it's on Windows but essentially when you highlight a word or any text, it's automatically gonna bring up this little tool bar and it’s gonna give you the option to search, cut, copy, paste. I do a lot of pub med research for health studies so I have Google Scholar linked up to it so I could literally highlight a word like I get an herb that I enjoy called Rhodiola and I click the Google Scholar button. Boom, now I have every single study popped up about it.
It's incredible. It also shows words and characters so if you're trying to say cut something from your Facebook page and you need to apply some of that message to Twitter, you just highlight it and it'll say 142 characters, oh, two characters too long, pop, clip.
John: Love that. Fire Nation will have that linked up in the show notes page. So Evan, if you could recommend just one book for our listeners, what would it be and why?
Evan: The Edge Effect by Dr. Eric Braverman and this is a bit of a geeky book, John, honestly. I think that people enjoy it though because it goes into the neuroscience of the brain in how your moods are determined and so I mean basically you're essentially a big bag of water and hormones and neuro transmitters. These are brain chemicals and it's important to understand how the brain works and why you have a crappy mood on a scientific level in my opinion because that way you can learn where vitamins play a role, where foods play a role.
I mean entrepreneurs can't be on top of their game if they're sabotaging their brain chemistry by toxic foods and toxic water and things like that and I know you’re started thinking passionate about this whole subject so The Edge Effect by Dr. Eric Braverman.
John: Awesome, on my list, Fire Nation, I know you love audio so I teamed up with Audible and if you haven't already, you can get an amazing audio book for free at eofirebook.com and Evan, this next question's the last of the lightning rounds but it's a doozy. Imagine you woke up tomorrow morning in a brand new world, identical to earth but you knew no one. You still have all the experience and knowledge you currently have. Your food and shelter taken care of but all you have is a laptop and $500.00. What would you do in the next seven days?
Evan: I would go find someone that is selling an iPhone, offer them a good deal, buy it, and then use my laptop to get on Craigslist and resell it for $200.00 more and then repeat that for about five or ten times until I have a few grand and then I would launch whether it's a new product or to sit on the money and go, sit on the money and then go travel somewhere real quick to get inspired and then probably create a product. I mean when I first started my entrepreneur journey, that's how I started. I started like in eighth grade selling hot fries. I'd buy them for a quarter from Sam's Club a piece and then I would sell them for a dollar at school a bag and then I moved up to Skittles and candy bars.
I was making maybe $15,00, $20.00 a week in school. You know, that was a lot and then I just kind of progressed to cellphones and then to entrepreneurship so a little bit of a long answer but it doesn't always have to be complicated, this whole entrepreneurship thing.
John: Arbitrage, Fire Nation, it's all about the arbitrage and Evan, let's end today on fire with you sharing one parting piece of guidance, the best way that we can connect with you then we'll say goodbye.
Evan: I will just say you have to be honest with yourself. The whole idea of fake it until you make it, there's definitely a valid piece of that because at a certain point, your ego is going to try to tell you that you're nothing and you're no one but to someone, you are something. I mean even if it's just your dog, to your dog, you're god. So it doesn't matter what your ego is telling you. Sometimes you just have to just be honest with yourself and say look, I may have this bad thing about me but there's got to be something good about you. Focus on that and then just keep using that to your advantage.
You're a unique person. Even though there are seven plus billion of us, there's something unique about you so find out what that is and use it to your advantage.
John: What's the best way we can connect with you?
Evan: Sure, notjustpaleo.com, you'll find everything there. If you're kind of geeking out on the food stuff right now and you wanna understand how food improves your mood, you can sign up for my newsletter there and I'll send you a free guide of what to eat, why to eat, and what it's gonna do for you and also my podcast is there, too. So if you love listening to podcast, obviously you've made it this far. There's hundreds of episodes for you to check out.
John: Love it and 128 five stars so obviously, Evan, you're doing something right, my friends and Fire Nation, you know the average of the five people that you spend the most time with, you've been hanging out with EB and JLD today so keep up the heat and head over to eofire.com. Just type Evan in the search bar. His show notes page will pop right up with everything that we've been talking about, links to his website, his podcast, his recommended books, resources, you name it, we got it.
Evan, thank you for sharing your journey with Fire Nation today. For that my friend, we salute you and we'll catch you on the flipside.
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