Photo: Jason DeFillippo
“My parents never really told me I couldn’t do anything.” – Shaun White
This particular episode comes from a fun event — my first live podcast at the iconic Troubadour in L.A. It sold out through my newsletter in 30 minutes, so thanks to all of you who came. If you haven’t signed up for the email newsletter, you should check it out. It’s free. Just go to fourhourworkweek.com/friday.
There were quite a few amazing guests at the event, and we’re going to divide them up into a few episodes.
Shaun White (@ShaunWhite) is our first — a professional snowboarder and skateboarder. Among his formidable feats of strength:
- He’s a 2x Olympic Gold medalist.
- He holds the X Games record for gold medals at 15, as well as the highest overall medal count at 24.
- Shaun has earned the number two spot on BusinessWeek’s list of the 100 most powerful and marketable athletes.
- And — ACH-TUNG! — for those near L.A. or willing to travel, Shaun is hosting an incredible event called Air + Style. Think of it as X Games meets Coachella, where you can listen to world-famous bands and then see jumps off of a 16-story ramp (no joke), among other excitement. Check it out at airandstyle.com. For 20% off general or VIP admission, you can use code “TimFerriss.” I get no cut, and I’ve already bought four tickets for myself and friends. The code is only good until midnight PT on February 19th (Friday).
If you only have a couple of minutes, listen here to discover who Shaun considered one of his biggest mentors and the lessons he learned.
- Listen to it on iTunes.
- Stream by clicking here.
- Download as an MP3 by right-clicking here and choosing “save as.”
Want to hear another podcast from a world-class athlete? You will probably enjoy my podcast with Triple H. In this episode, we discuss pre-fight rituals, injury avoidance, and Floyd Mayweather, Jr. (stream below or right-click here to download):
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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: Based on Shaun’s two-goal philosophy, what two goals would you set for yourself? How would they help with your life or business? Please let me know in the comments.
Scroll below for links and show notes…
Selected Links from the Episode
- Tetralogy of Fallot (Shaun’s heart condition)
- Encinitas YMCA
- Birdhouse Skateboards
- X Games
- charity: water
- Burton Snowboards
- Shaun White’s Business Is Red Hot at Fast Company
- 2006 Winter Olympics (Torino, Italy)
- Sandman by Neil Gaiman
- Open: An Autobiography by Andre Agassi
- Toyota Big Air
- 2010 Winter Olympics (Vancouver, Canada)
- Rolling Stone Magazine (March 18th, 2010) Featuring Shaun White
- Fifty Shades of Chicken: A Parody in a Cookbook by F.L. Fowler
- Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell
- Bear Mountain’s Snow Summit
- AC/DC – Back in Black
- Led Zeppelin – Communication Breakdown
- The Black Keys – Howlin’ For You
- The Most Unholy Jacket Ever
- Metallica – Master of Puppets
- Bad Things (Shaun’s band)
- Thirty Seconds to Mars
- Air + Style
- Mayor B’s Instagram (Shaun’s dog)
- Connect with Shaun White:
- Shaun’s heart defect that made the life of a world-class athlete unlikely. [06:27]
- Shaun talks about the first time he met Tony Hawk. [08:09]
- Shaun discusses his family background. [14:59]
- How did Shaun’s parents keep him grounded when he started getting attention from sponsors like Burton at age seven? [16:26]
- How has Shaun managed to maintain creative control and avoid the pitfall of bad decisions that often plague athletes? [18:47]
- Shaun talks about some of his career mentors. [21:28]
- What opportunities is Shaun glad he said no to? [23:45]
- What advice would current-day Shaun give to his 2006 Winter Olympics self in Torino (when he won his first gold medal)? [26:54]
- Shaun describes picture day at school with two black eyes. [27:58]
- Shaun explains his lifelong admiration for Andre Agassi and lessons he’s learned from the tennis great. [33:07]
- Shaun sets two goals every season: something serious and something funny. [40:29]
- What is Shaun’s internal dialogue when he’s competing? [44:07]
- Most gifted books. [47:24]
- Was growing up in Southern California a disadvantage for an aspiring snowboarder? [48:41]
- Shaun tells us how his physical training differs now from when he was younger. [50:39]
- Shaun’s superstitions and what he does before competitions. [55:30]
- What was so unholy about Burton’s White Collection? [58:52]
- How did Shaun get involved with music? [01:01:51]
- Shaun tells us about inheriting the Air + Style event. [01:10:15]
- Who is the first person who comes to mind when Shaun thinks of the word “successful?” [01:14:40]
- Who does Shaun rely on to tell him when he’s wrong? [01:15:28]
- When does Shaun tend to come up with new tricks? [01:16:39]
- Are there any historical figures Shaun wishes he could meet? [01:17:25]
- What would be on Shaun’s non-advertisement billboard? [01:17:41]
- Tony Hawk
- Mike McGill
- David Blaine
- Mark Ervin
- Cathy White (Shaun’s mom)
- Roger White (Shaun’s dad)
- Jesse White (Shaun’s brother)
- Bob Burnquist
- Neil Gaiman
- Andre Agassi
- Steffi Graf
- Paul Levesque (aka Triple H)
- Floyd Mayweather
- Seven Days in Hell
- Andy Samberg
- Kit Harington
- Bjorn Borg
- John McEnroe
- Jake Burton
- Jared Leto
- Ozzy Osbourne
- Kendrick Lamar
- Donald Duck
Posted on: February 18, 2016.
Please check out Tribe of Mentors, my newest book, which shares short, tactical life advice from 100+ world-class performers. Many of the world's most famous entrepreneurs, athletes, investors, poker players, and artists are part of the book. The tips and strategies in Tribe of Mentors have already changed my life, and I hope the same for you. Click here for a sample chapter and full details. Roughly 90% of the guests have never appeared on my podcast.
Who was interviewed? Here's a very partial list: tech icons (founders of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Craigslist, Pinterest, Spotify, Salesforce, Dropbox, and more), Jimmy Fallon, Arianna Huffington, Brandon Stanton (Humans of New York), Lord Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Ben Stiller, Maurice Ashley (first African-American Grandmaster of chess), Brené Brown (researcher and bestselling author), Rick Rubin (legendary music producer), Temple Grandin (animal behavior expert and autism activist), Franklin Leonard (The Black List), Dara Torres (12-time Olympic medalist in swimming), David Lynch (director), Kelly Slater (surfing legend), Bozoma Saint John (Beats/Apple/Uber), Lewis Cantley (famed cancer researcher), Maria Sharapova, Chris Anderson (curator of TED), Terry Crews, Greg Norman (golf icon), Vitalik Buterin (creator of Ethereum), and nearly 100 more. Check it all out by clicking here.