Paul Epstein

Welcome to another episode of the Underdog Show. Today’s guest is Paul Epstein, a former high-level executive in the NFL and NBA and a two-time bestselling author. With a mission to facilitate better and faster decision-making, Paul brings his “always-on-offense” mindset to the conversation, sharing insights, anecdotes, and transformative experiences.

Paul Epstein is a notable figure in the realms of sports and leadership. With two bestselling books under his belt, “The Power of Playing Offense” and “Better Decisions Faster,” Paul’s expertise extends beyond the field into the corporate world. Recognized by SUCCESS magazine as a top speaker who achieves tangible results, he has left an indelible mark on companies like Amazon, Disney, and the LA Lakers.

Key Takeaways:

  • Father’s Legacy and Impact on Purpose: Paul’s father’s passing at a young age was the catalyst for his purpose-driven journey, inspired by his father’s belief in students and the hope he instilled in them.
  • Finding One’s Calling Through Small Actions: Emphasizing the potency of seemingly small actions, Paul shares his path to becoming a keynote speaker, initially feeling insignificant but driven by a passion for connecting with people.
  • Career Journey from Sports to Leadership: Paul’s pivot from a corporate giant to the sports industry, Pamela’s entrepreneurial beginnings, and their shared experiences as underdogs navigating challenging environments.
  • Developing an Underdog Mentality: The conversation delves into resilience, adaptability, and the mindset necessary to thrive in competitive arenas
  • Prioritizing Core Values: Shifting focus from goals to core values, Paul advocates for daily actions aligned with personal standards and emphasizes the impact of these values on one’s life and work.
  • Redefining Success Metrics: The discussion centers on redefining success metrics to measure internal peace and fostering personal growth through consistent actions aligned with core values.
  • Upcoming Book: Paul teases his upcoming book, “Better Decisions Faster,” and shares insights on cultivating confidence and peace of mind in decision-making processes.

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Click To Read The Transcript

Paul Epstein’s Journey to Building Framework for Sustainable Growth and Success

Pamela Bardhi: Hello, everyone, and welcome to the Underdog podcast. Today I have an incredible guest here with me, Paul. How are you, my friend?

Paul Epstein: I am great, Pam. Fired up to be here.

Pamela Bardhi: Fired, up to have you. My goodness. We were just talking, know, before we got on. Like, I love your story, I love where you’ve been. and I just can’t wait to hear how you got there, the whole journey in between. Can’t wait to hear all of that. So I’m super pumped and honored to have you, my friend. Thank you so much.

Paul Epstein: Of course. Yeah. And I vibe with the underdog feel, so, we should totally unpack that.

Pamela Bardhi: Oh, heck, yeah. I’m so, so ready for that, my friend. I’m so, so ready for that.

What inspires you on your journey to where you are today? Loaded question

Pamela Bardhi: And speaking of underdog, there’s always a place where we start.  Or what kind of inspires us. And what’s that internal drive that keeps that underdog really moving? So, my first question to you, Paul, is. what inspired you on your journey to where you are today? Loaded question. I know.

Paul Epstein: All right, well, what inspires me the most to this day. and what has been inspiring my journey every day. since I was 19 years old was the worst day of my life. And the worst day of my life is when I lost my hero. My dad was my hero, and he passed away when I was 19. to this day, he is my oxygen, my fuel, my purpose. The reason I do what I do, my measurement of success, is to make him proud. it’s because, not just that he was my dad. because of what I learned about him after he passed away. 

So, by trade, he was a continuation high school teacher. which, if our underdog community is not familiar with what a continuation school is. it’s a kid’s last chance. it’s somebody that has been kicked out of traditional school once, twice, maybe three times. They landed a continuation. And the next stop are, the streets. So the hope and prayer is they don’t go on to become a statistic on the street. Kids have been given up on no hope, no optimism, broken home, disadvantaged background. 

Like, the list goes on as to why. but that’s the environment that my dad chose. He used to teach at traditional schools. then he chose continuation. because he wanted to make a difference and he wanted to leave people better than he found him. And years after he passed away, in a barbershop. not too far away from the school that he used to teach at. And there were several students in different days. that would come up to me and say things like. your dad was the first person that ever believed in me. Another told me, your dad gave me a reason to think that tomorrow was worth it. So when you hear things like that. that’s where I learned the real definition of leadership. That’s where I learned how, personal it gets. 

That’s where I learned what the meaning of impact is. and to make a difference and to leave people in places better than you found them. so, when I say my dad’s legacy has become my purpose. My strongest core value is impact. it’s all because of my dad. And I didn’t know that that was my strongest core value when he passed. I didn’t know. I didn’t put these words to it. until after these students of his shined a light on how beautiful impact is. leaving people better than they found him is.

Paul says his dad inspires him to live beyond his physical body

Paul Epstein: So, you asked me what inspires me. I actually love the Latin definition of inspire. which is to breathe life into every single day. My dad breathes life into me. and I haven’t hugged him since I was 19. So how’s that for starters?

Pamela Bardhi: Oh, my goodness. Paul, that was powerful. Thank you so much for sharing that. And I’m sorry to hear that he passed so young. But listen to his legacy.

Paul Epstein: How.

Pamela Bardhi: Yeah, that is some powerful stuff. To live beyond your physical body is the greatest honor in the world.

Paul Epstein: Totally couldn’t agree more.

Pamela Bardhi: And how many lives he’s changed through doing that, I can only imagine. And the fact that he chose a specific route for a reason, that is amazing.

Paul: All it takes is one light to light up a room

Paul Epstein: Well, I want to talk to all the underdogs out there and, connect some dots here. because we may look at this and say, all right. so, he passed in the year of 2001. And so at this point, when we’re recording this. it’s been 22 years, he’s still impacting people today. here’s what I mean by that. Those students in the barber shop that shared those things with me, inspire me to this day. I’m a keynote speaker. By the time that my career is all said and done. and I’m going to do it till the day I die, I found my calling. I freaking love it. I love it is my calling. 

I’m going to speak to millions of people. And you know what story I share in every single keynote. I expand on what I just told you. So, one person that was impacted makes one comment to me and it can touch millions of people. So when we say underdogs, oh, but I can’t change the world. Oh, but no, that’s too big BS. You change one person at a time, one life. and that’s how we create positive change. 

And that’s kind of where I want to inspire folks to say. never think that you’re too small or we’re too small. or it’s only one action or it’s only BS. It’s not because, Had that one person not spoken up to me in the barbershop. I’m not sharing this with you right now. And all of our underdog community is not being impacted. So it scales over decades and generations. I just want to empower folks that there is no action too small. The only wrong action is no action.

Pamela Bardhi: Amen. My goodness, that’s super powerful. This is one of my favorite sayings, Paul, and I know you’ll resonate with this. but all it takes is one light to light up a.

Paul Epstein: Right?

Pamela Bardhi: So, like, when people are possibly make a difference.  I literally say that. I’m like, do you turn on one switch? I mean, sometimes there’s recessed lights. So, yeah, we’ll give that the exception. But even still, right, you don’t need much and it’ll light up the whole room. In a room of darkness, all you need is that one. Even if it’s a lamp, care.

Paul Epstein: Amen.

Pamela Bardhi: If it’s a small lamp, it is what it is. You can never underestimate the impact that you could have. because then it compounds, too. Like you said, tell one person a message and then it compounds. and turns into something absolutely beautiful.

As a kid, what did you actually want to be when you grew up

Pamela Bardhi: And I want to dive it back a little bit for you, Paul, before you were 19. So as a kid growing up. what did you actually want to be when you grew up?

Paul Epstein: Yeah. So you know how the saying of success leaves clues. and I won’t call this success. I’ll just say that life leaves clues. And I think sometimes if we’re listening to what those around us say.  especially when they’re said over and over and over, we shouldn’t ignore it. so when people describe you with a similar saying or a certain word. here’s how my family broke it down for me, and I’ll lead with the anchor statement. Paul, you never shut up. That’s all I kept hearing as I was growing up. Like, Paul, you don’t stop talking. You don’t shut up. 

I’m like, okay, and so all my family, partially, was, I’m having fun, I’m debating sports. but I’m, like, yapping away. Through all of my formative years, I still remember that for sure. And so my family, with their pretend crystal ball, said. you’re going to grow up to become one of two things, a trial attorney or a salesman. And the funny part is, as you fast forward, I did become one of them. Sales, from entry to executive level in the pro sports industry. So I did become a salesman and then a sales leader. then I married an attorney. I guess I checked both boxes. I couldn’t handle both at the same time. But anyways, yeah. So I can’t tell you that’s what I wanted to be. I’ll just tell you. 

Those were the clues that were given to me. But I did love talking. Deep down inside, I knew there was this gift of gab, this power of communication. And I also love connecting with people. So I’m like, well, I love connecting with people. I love building relationships. And so, oh, there’s this profession called sales. where they pay you money to connect with people and build relationships. eventually, hOpefully, you sell things. 

And I really simplified it to that level. So when I went into college, it was, what do you want to major in? I’m like, well, business. And then what specific concentration within business? Sales. Sales. Marketing. Let me land somewhere in there. because those seem to be more people centric. versus all the number stuff I just wasn’t into. so I just kind of went where the human connection was. that’s what got me studying sales.

Pamela Bardhi: I absolutely love that. And I love when you were younger, what your family said, that’s hilarious. Salesman or trial attorney. And then somehow both ended up manifesting in your life, which is hilarious. I love that.

So walk me through kind of, like, your early years

Pamela Bardhi: So walk me through kind of, like, your early years. So, like, high school to college and all of that.

Paul Epstein: Yeah, high school was interesting. I was kind of in this Ken Barbie relationship. like, football guy and the smoking cheerleader, all that stuff. And so it was interesting. But, while I was an athlete, and here’s the thing, I was a chameleon. Like, yes, I was the athlete. but I also saw other pockets and groups of people. and I always had this thing. I think it comes from my early childhood where my mom is Mexican. We spent a lot of our time south of the border. I’m here in LA. It was a four hour drive down to Ensenada where the family was. So I spent all the holidays every other weekend. I got some very humble roots and humble beginnings.  it really just created this spirit of human connection that I keep bringing up. 

And it also taught me, you don’t need money to smile. Like, we had none of the first and we had a lot of the second. And so fast forward, when I saw the kid in high school that was by themselves. I would be the one that approached them. I would just be the one to just talk and ask them why they were alone. but not in a diminishing way, in kind of, a, hey, come over here way. Like, there’s a tribe of people over here. Hey, there’s the cool kids over here. Hey, there’s the athletes. by the way, what are you into? Oh, you love chess. You know those three people love chess. 

Why don’t you go hang out with them? Just trying to connect some dots for introverts that I just felt like. hey, instead of being like, I don’t like words like socially awkward. I just use the word yet. They just haven’t found their people yet. They haven’t found their people yet. When you feel awkward in an environment.  you have to get uncomfortable to grow. And so I always kind of knew. I would have never described it this way. but I always said, if there is a person that looks at a place. I’m going to be the reason that they find their place. 

That was my thought. And so, fast forward from high school. and while I was definitely the social guy and all of that good stuff. I got really good grades, and I owe myself none of the credit for that. I had a hawk of a mother. Like, she was like, I’m going to be the president of PTA so that I can hover. I’m going to be, the parent teacher association. I’m abbreviating it. Yeah. So she was that. then she also wanted to have visibility into the paperwork of like. oh, if you ditch, I’m going to know. 

And I’m like, dude, it was like, man, the police are always right down the corner. Look, I hated it at the time, but I’m so thankful in reflecting back. because, a, it led to good results and grades. which gave me a lot of options on where I could eventually go to school. And how about this for a crazy stat? She made me apply to 18 schools. 18. I probably genuinely was interested in four. so you got to go through that whole process. again, in the moment, you hate it. 

Now. I’m so thankful because kind of like relationships. I have this really interesting saying when I talk to folks. especially if they’re still single and especially if they’re still trying to figure it out. I say you got to date some crazy to find the one. In other words, you’ve got to have a lot of bad dates in order to appreciate. eventually when you find good, you need to know what not to do. before you figure out what to do that whole piece. And so I thought about schools in a similar way. 

Like, oh, applying for that one meant nothing to me. But why did it mean nothing to me? Did I not like the weather? Did I not like the vibe? Did they have an ugly brochure? Did the thing I wanted to study not exist there? I think that learning what you don’t want to do. is as powerful and important as learning what you want to do. Like, one of my good buddies, Jay Ferough. he runs the Renegade radio podcast like Top Health and Fitness. Like just a yoked up dude, crazy following. 

I had him on my Win Monday podcast. and he had a beautiful saying that I want to share. He said, paul, when we talk about passion, you always think about the question. so what do I love to do? What do I love to do? And he said, paul, like, I love a million things. I’m just, energized. I’m passionate. Like, that’s too hard. So he asked himself the opposite question. What do I hate not doing?

Pamela Bardhi: Think about that.

Paul Epstein: What do I hate not doing? And if you can answer that. it reverse engineers into answering what you love to do. I hate not being around people means I love being social as an example. So that was kind of where, you know, I go to USC. and I do the business thing and the sales thing. then a year after that is where I broke into sports. But regardless, it all ties back to the early roots and the formative things for my family. the things I hated, the things I loved, the things I tolerated. I just feel like I was always very aware,  I was super aware. 

And I think the other thing that I believe is kind of a gift. and I feel all of us can build it over time. is what a lot of other people call figure out ability. Figure out ability. Like being resourceful. I was an only child. and I didn’t need to hang out with anybody if I didn’t want to. I was like, I’m going to make my own fun. I’m going to entertain myself. I’m going to do what I want to do when I want to do it. 

And trust me, that ends up hurting me. Later in life, okay. But the resourcefulness and the figure out ability meter were always ten out of ten. I never felt out of place. I’m all good again. I think later on in life, a little bit. maybe too independent, ended up coming back and not being the most team oriented. and this and that, and those were pain points a, decade plus later. But I was just super stoked that I was like. dude, throw me anywhere and I’ll figure it out.

Pamela Bardhi: I absolutely love that. That is one hell of a journey. Well, I resonate with that a lot. because I had two restaurants by the time I was 21. and I started in small business when I was ten. So being in my family’s business. my father always and my mother both treated me as an employee.

Hated it. But it taught me so much discipline and so much business sense

Paul Epstein: Hated it.

Pamela Bardhi: But it taught me so much discipline and so much business sense. because I was forced to kind of learn all of that at such a young age. So it became second nature. which is what served me so well in business. So we talk about how much we hate it when it’s happening to us. When we’re young, we’re like, why can’t we be like normal kids? And then you realize later why it plays out the way that it does. I absolutely love that.

Your journey in sports was 15 years between the NBA and NFL

Pamela Bardhi: Thank you for taking us on that journey, Paul. And then post college career, how did that. You got into the sales side, and you mentioned on the pro football side, I believe.

Paul Epstein: Yeah, I started basketball and then football. but, yeah, my journey in sports was 15 years between the NBA and NFL.

Pamela Bardhi: That’s insane. And that started right outside of college.

Paul Epstein: Yeah, about a year, year and a half after. Yeah. And you know what’s cool, too? The commencement speech when I graduated from USC was delivered by the anchorman himself, Will Ferrell. And I remember when he said this from the podium, he said. you, like me, have the same opportunity to marry your passion to your day job. while it sounds like something that, hey, at the time, you’re 21 ish years old. it sounds cool, and it’s like, yeah, I want to be passionate about my job. 

And then you realize most people aren’t. but I don’t know, there was this weird thing inside of me that those words stuck. and they started to obsess me. in the year, year and a half between that point and breaking into sports. whenever I felt like I wasn’t passionate about what I was doing. I always looked back, and I remember the moment in memory of his words and said. like, there’s got to be a better way. 

And I didn’t know the answers, I didn’t know the plan B. I didn’t, say grass is greener, I found things that gave me energy. and excitement in my current role. But I knew the first thing that I did. which, by the way, was a fortune ten company, and it was six figures. That goal, it was not a bad thing. but I just knew, I was like. this isn’t what the anchorman was talking about.

Pamela Bardhi: Interesting. Well, because getting into the whole sales side, into professional sports. a lot of people are like, oh, my God, that’s the pinnacle and all of that. So walk me through that transition into what you’re doing now.  because I know there’s definitely been a pivot throughout that spirit.

Paul Allen says he considers himself an underdog based on his early career

Paul Epstein: Well, this is where underdog, remember when we opened up.  I said, I consider myself an underdog. I don’t consider myself too much of an underdog based on the first 20 years of my life.  like the personal years, humble beginnings, sure. But if you want to call that an underdog, that’s cool, I don’t know how to brand that. but what I do know is this. I got my teeth kicked in in the sports industry. and I consider myself an underdog because here was exactly how it went down.

 I break into sports as an entry level guy for the LA Clippers, not the Lakers, the Clippers. We were known as the redheaded stepchild of the building. I’m an entry level sales guy, and a year before I start, ESPN called us the worst brand in sports. And then my second week on the job. the front cover of Sports Illustrated say. you are the worst franchise in sports history. On the front cover of Sports Illustrated. there are three fans with paper bags over their head and a message in marker on the forehead. One of the messages was, just, shoot me, and you got to sell that. That’s where I cut my teeth. And that’s where it was like, dude, reflecting back. 

And actually, one more thing. I left the job before my break into sports. Six figures. that goal to make $7 an hour. Six figures to $7, selling the worst franchise in sports history. And this is exactly where I learned how do you play offense in defensive environments? little did I know that in the next 20 years after that. I would write a best selling leadership playbook called the Power of Playing Offense. It was the origin story of what I experienced in the early days of sports. from what I just shared at the Clippers, to go to New Orleans and people didn’t care about basketball. it’s kind of like in life, tell me you love me. 

Tell me you hate me. Don’t tell me you don’t care, because love, we connect. Hate, I could try to flip that. Or maybe you’re just not my posse or not my tribe and I go a different direction. but apathy when you don’t care, I can’t change that. And that’s the environment that I found myself in. we almost lost the team to permanent relocation and had to salvage it. it’s a crazy story. And then I go to the Sacramento Kings after that. 

And I remember, even though I was director of sales, HR took a liking to me. they say, paul, you’re in charge of all company culture initiatives. And I said, fna. Like, that sounds amazing. I’m in. then a month later, bang. League wide labor lockout. So how do you manage morale when it feels like people’s livelihoods are taken away? so my experiences from LA to New Orleans to Sacramento. that’s all, like, the early chapters, that’s why I’m an underdog. because I feel like I had to walk through fire to get where I’m at. Like, nothing was ever handed to me. 

There were no incoming calls. In real estate terms, I was never in a booming market. It was never a hot market. If the three best words are location, location, location. I always sold the worst locatiOns. And I still figured it out. I still did. And I say that with no ego, full humility, to be like, there’s always a way. It’s just we use excuses. Oh, these circumstances. Oh, life isn’t fair. You’re right, it’s not. It hasn’t been fair for me either. you figure it out. So part of being an underdog is there’s a difference between an underdog and a victim. to me, an underdog means you’re down and you need to rise up. 

Like, I’m not the favorite. In betting terms, the money is on the other side. If this is a chess game, I’m down to two pieces and you’ve got eight left. All right. I’m still going to win this game. I don’t know how, but I’m going to figure it out. That is an underdog fight and scrap mentality versus. like, Oh, woe is me, and I’ve been knocked down. and I point fingers at other things and other people. victims, that win has never happened. It just doesn’t happen. And so I think that’s important for all of us to realize. I believe the three table stakes of stepping into everyday life are awareness, ownership and intention. Awareness, ownership, and intention.

 And for you to kick butt as an underdog, you need to be aware, all right? ODs are stacked against me. You need to own the good and the bad. Damn. Maybe some of my previous decisions and actions got me here. and maybe that’s why I’m on the ground a little bit. But I got to rise up. Ownership, I own it. Extreme ownership. And then intention attack every day. one decision, one action at a time, with a winning mentality. Like, hey, I’m not going to drift away on default. I’m going to live and lead by design. I don’t live by default, I live by design. all of that takes intentionality.

Paul talks about being an underdog in his business

Paul Epstein: So you could tell I’m fired up about this topic of being an underdog. because I don’t bet on the favorite. I never worked in situations that were easy. And to this day, I’ll tell you what. 2022. We’re recording this in 2023. 2022. It was a good business year. It was okay. But I was a little frustrated at the end of it. Then this year, by mid aPril, all my revenue, all my expectations, all my goals for 2023. surpassed all of last year by mid April of this year. Okay, so in three and a half months, did more than twelve months last year.

 And I say that because what hurt me in 2022 was I didn’t attack every day with an underdog mentality. I didn’t. I’m being honest. But this year, like, dude, I am firing on all cylinders. Firing. And the world is noticing, and it’s just a beautiful place to be. it was a great reminder for me that I don’t care if it’s a good economy or a bad economy. a good market, a bad market. Like, I got to show up the same way. Scrappy as hell as an underdog every day. that’s why this year has gone so phenomenally well, and it’s my job to stay there.

Pamela Bardhi: I absolutely love that, Paul. I mean, a few things that you know about the underdog mean. we’re the ones that are the least likely to succeed. And in all of your positions and all the different places that you were. you were in the least likely position to win. And it takes a big shift in mindset to really attack that, at this level. then, of course, what you’re managing now in your business. which is absolutely incredible.

 Like you said, you’re like, in one quarter, I’m doing more than what I did in twelve months. and it’s all mental work. So I’d be interested for you to dig a little bit deeper on. When you were in pro sports, how did you develop this mentality and fight to win? And then, how did it translate? And when you pivoted over to speaking and all of this amazingness that you’re up to in the world now,

Paul Miller: Standards over goals are what got me there this year

Paul Epstein: For sure, I wrap it up into one tight bow and one phrase. Standards over goals. Standards over goals. Here’s what I mean by that. Goals are numbers, they’re metrics, they’re external things. It could be revenue, whatever. It’s arbitrary. Sometimes you hit them, sometimes you don’t. Sometimes you have a twelve month goal. And let’s say it takes me twelve months in one week to get there. And somebody in finance or somebody looking at an Excel spreadsheet says, I failed. Bullshit. No, I didn’t. Like, oh, it took me a week long.

 You see, like, goals are so tricky. And when we hang our entire health and wellness and well being. and confidence into our self worth, into, did I hit a goal? Did I not? It just is unhealthy. I say this as somebody that has crushed billion dollar goals. broken all time Super bowl revenue records. Goals are not what got me there. It was standards. Because standards you never miss. A standard is what you hold yourself accountable to. A standard is a process, a standard is a system, a habit, a ritual, a routine. And when you can put your hard head on and be about those things. you don’t lose, period, point blank. 

And so my standard going into this year and why the results have transformed. I locked in on one standard. Yes, I still had a revenue goal, but I wasn’t driven by that. what is my strongest core value? Its impact, and my formula for becoming the most confident version of yourself. I say, confidence equals values times action. The multiplication is how consistently you do it. Confidence equals values times action. My strongest value is impact. What is one action I can take that’s connected to my core value of impact? And here’s what I told myself in December. 

I’m going to plant to either build a new relationship or enhance an existing relationship. And I believe that me and this person connecting can lead to impact in the future. There could be some level of service bettering them, bettering me, bettering a business opportunity, whatever it is. But an impact seed is an impact seed. I plant five impact seeds a day and I don’t take days off. That standard is non negotiable. And that’s why I achieved my goal and my results and my revenue targets in three and a half months. 

Because I became driven by my strongest core value of impact, I attached my value to an action. Values times action equals confidence. So my confidence rose, and all of a sudden, through the standard of planting five impact seeds. that’s why things have taken off. And so you ask me how things are going. As long as I keep planting impact seeds, I know I can’t lose. And I just believe that when we wrap our minds to the underdogs out there around things that are controllable.  that’s when life gets easier. When you think that life is hard because you’re an underdog, cool, what do you control? It sounds like a cliche. but control the controllables.

 When I was in sports, when I was a sales manager and I was managing a, sales team. and I was still figuring out how to be a leader. I just said, look, I know that I’m supposed to hire the best salespeople. That’s my job. When I’m recruiting and I interview 20 people to hire one. I’m going to hire the person that I think can sell the most widgets. Now, that said, here’s what I need from you. I don’t need you to have stress or anxiety about revenue, performance, or sales. And they’re like, Paul, but come on.

Like, dude, I’m a sales guy. that’s my job. And I’m like, no, it’s not. Your job is three things, positivity, work ethic, and coachability. I said, if you can do those three things, positivity, work ethic. and coachability, I will take care of you for the rest of your life. Because my job is to hire your talent. Your job is to give me the will. In other words, I hire the skill, you bring the will. That’s how this works. so I think that’s the standard. The standard was positive work ethic, coachable. when they do those three things, if I hired the right person. they’re going to sell a lot of things.

 So this isn’t rocket science, but too often it’s like you hire the best salesperson. and there’s no guts on the inside. or they’re toxic in the locker room, and you’re like, this is a horrible decision. Even though they sell things like, we’re bleeding, we’re bleeding. so I just try to find people that were positive energy, that worked their you know what off. And if they weren’t doing well, at least they’re coachable. So they’re willing to get 1% better every day. that was kind of my thought process. I think, for everyone out there. what are the standards that you can control? Pick a few and lock in on those things and combine those with actions. That’s the winning game plan.

Pamela Bardhi: Absolutely. I love that.

You attached your core value of impact to an action

Pamela Bardhi: And you mentioned that you attached your core value of impact to an action. which is what created this standard in your life, which I absolutely love. because a lot of people talk about goals. but then how do they actually manifest them. So that would be one thing, because I know the audience is probably listening. like, okay, how do I do this? So, how can you go in and say, all right, I want to shift this. what steps would you take?

Paul Epstein: I got it. Here’s the beauty. I believe it can change your life. and it will take two minutes a week for the next four weeks. So give me ten minutes. In the next 30 days, your life will change. I say this because I went through this. It changed my life. I’ve coached this to thousands of people. and every single time, if they do the work, they got to do it. If they’re like, hey, Paul, you told me to do it four times, and I did it, too. All right, well, then don’t cry if it didn’t work. Know, it’s like I’m telling you right now, this will work. but you got to see it through.

Pick one single value that you consider to be your strongest value

Paul Epstein: So, here’s the exercise. It’s a journaling exercise. Takes two minutes. You pick one single value that you consider to be your strongest value. And if you’re, curious, what are my strongest core values? Google a list of common individual values, personal values. Just pick one. Pick one. And if you lock in on one value, here’s the exercise you, journal. I will live my value of blank by blank. So, I will live my value of blank by blank. The first blank you fill in the value that you chose. The second blank is for an action that you will commit to tied to that value.

So, I’ll give you two examples. Let’s say you chose a value of joy. In this case, you would journal, I will live my value of joy by cooking my favorite meal. Cool. It could be something super small like that. You don’t need to swing for the fences right away. But now let’s raise the stakes. What if you chose a core value of courage? Same sentence. I will live my value of courage by having that challenging conversation that I’ve been putting off. Boom. You’re not having the conversation. because Paul said you’re having that conversation. because it’s connected to your core value. 

Of courage. And when you can do this, you m journal the same value four consecutive weeks. And by the way, I’m not choosing four randomly. There is science that backs this up. Habits and rituals form in a three to four week time period. This is why New Year’s resolutions don’t work. We don’t have a process, we don’t have a system. we don’t stick with it long enough. But if you can do something for at least four weeks. because now you’re past the threshold of habit formation, now you internalize it. 

Now it’s muscle memory. So you do this journaling exercise once a week for four consecutive weeks on the same value. So, Joy this week, joy next week, joy the following week. joy the following week or courage this week? Courage the following. Courage the following. You stick with the same value, you do the exercise. and eventually what you’ll see is maybe the first week you just did one small thing. one small action, and then the next week, one or two small actions. 

And then by the third week, you’re like, oh, my gosh. I did four things this past week that are connected to that value. And then by the fourth week, oh, my gosh, 6789, maybe more things. because now it’s become muscle memory. Now that’s kind of where your brain is being wired. so I just love this exercise because it connects how you show up to who you are. how you show up are your actions.

 Who you are is your value. And when you consistently act on who you are. you become the most confident version of yourself. That’s why, remember the formula, confidence equals values times action. That journaling exercise is your process to become the most confident version of yourself.

Pamela Bardhi: I, absolutely love that, Paul, thank you so much for sharing that. I was writing it down, too. I’m m like, I need to commit more into. And not just goals, but standards. So you can really hold yourself accountable. because, again, we can have all these big goals and dreams and all of these things. But if you don’t hold yourself accountable and do the work. then, that’s how we don’t get there. Like, we could sit there and try to manifest and do all the things. It just won’t work. I love that. 

What would your older self tell your younger self based on what you say

Pamela Bardhi: And, Paul, this is one of my favorite questions. and I definitely want to hear what you have to say, on this one. whether it’s business, personal, whatever it may be. But what would your older self tell your younger self based on what you.

Paul Epstein: Know now, it’s hard to take it a one and you’re asking me this at the right time. Last Friday, I did a speech for whereas most of my stuff is corporate. last week I spoke to 350 high school and college kids, and the through line was. what would I tell my younger self? So I created a handful of messages that I would have. So I’m thinking of those five right now and thinking about which one I most firmly believe in that I think is relevant. okay, I’ve got one. I’ve got a good one. 

And, by the way, I’ve already shared some in this conversation. Like, one of the things I would tell my younger self is standards over goals. So we already talked about that. So let me give you a new one. We all have a daily scoreboard, and when we’re younger. we largely make the scoreboard of whether we consider the day, the week, the month, the year a success. It’s external stuff. Did I make this amount of money? Did I get the job promotion? whatever it is. But it’s all external stuff. And the more I’ve realized that true happiness and fulfillment and purpose and, significance. those things are not tied to external things.

 They’re not. I’m not saying that external things are bad. I’m just saying, don’t do it because you think you’re going to be happier. You won’t. The goalposts keep moving further away, and you never make it. You make $5, you want ten, you make 100, you want 200, you get that promotion. You want the next, you’re never done. And so it’s very unfulfilling to be like, dude, there’s no top of the mountain. The top of the mountain is when you internally feel at peace not when the world applauds. because you look great on LinkedIn. I used to think that that was the case. 

So what I would tell my younger self is, you need to redefine your daily scoreboard. And instead of making it about external things, I have three things that I now measure. I call it the principle of Eir. Experience, information, relationships. So here’s how it goes down. At the end of the day, you ask yourself, what experience did I gain today then information. What information did I learn today, then relationships. What relationships did I build or enhance today?

 And when you can consistently check the boxes of experience, information, and relationships. you’re always going to have a winning mindset. because as humans, we’re momentum machines. We love to grow, we love to evolve, we love to develop. but we don’t always know how to do it. And so, with this, it’s giving you a consistent markers that are in your control. because you can always put yourself in a position to. Listening to this podcast could be your information checkbox. 

Hey, I learned new information today from hearing Pam and Paul Rap on XY. Great. You learned something new today. Awesome. Keep doing it. Now, relationships that’s fully in your control. You can plant impact seeds like me. You can figure out another. send one text message a day just to let somebody know that they matter. Whatever your process is, do something to build or enhance a relationship and then experience.

Paul: I love how you break things down into sustainable steps

Paul Epstein: I think this is a cool one because let’s say you have a dead end job. Let’s say you don’t like your job right now. Your boss is an ahole. I’m not in the right industry. I’m afraid of being laid off. There’S a lot of real stuff that creates non happiness in the workplace right now. But instead of saying, oh my God, I roll another day at this blah blah blah job.  what if, remember the dating analogy? You got to date some crazy to find the one. What if today is just reinforcing? Oh, this is why I don’t like that job. I now have a new experience and a better lens for what I really do want. 

So in other words, there’s no bad day, because a bad day is just informing what you don’t like. And that is beautiful information. So this is kind of like even in the negativity. there can be a positive spin. It means don’t stay there for ten years. but it also doesn’t mean irresponsibly leave tomorrow. It’s like, cool every time. I’ve been here for six months and I now see a trend and a theme and a pattern. This is why this is not the person for me. This is why this is not the job for me. So I love that when we start to measure daily experience, information and relationships. it almost guarantees that we’re going to have progress and growth and evolution. And to me, that’s just like one of the most beautiful ways of attacking every day.

Pamela Bardhi: Absolutely. I love how you break them down into such easy and sustainable steps to get there. I absolutely love that, Paul, I love that. Still love the standards over goals. That’s so powerful.

Paul Epstein: I would have said, know, you told me one thing. but I would have gone standards over goals had I not shared. Yep.

Pamela Bardhi: That’s amazing.

Paul Epsteins talks about elevating confidence with free online quiz

Pamela Bardhi: My goodness, Paul, I love everything that you’re up to in all of these things about, ah, elevating confidence. and I’m just like, man, what is he up to in the next few months. like what’s going on, what’s new in your world? I know you’re cooking up something amazing in the background. You always are. I mean, the fact that you’ve exceeded your revenue goals already since April is pretty incredible. So I’m sure you’re working on a lot of amazing stuff. So what’s up in your world the next few months? Paul?

Paul Epstein: Lot cooking. But the short answer is book number two, coming out in September of 2023. Better decisions, faster, unshakable confidence when you need it most. So it’s a book to master our ability to make decisions with less stress. with more peace of mind, knowing we made the best call faster and with greater confidence. That’s one. And then the other, too, is, I’m building this win Monday community. which literally will be launching any day now. from the time that you and I are having this conversation. 

So all of this can be found at Paul when you see the win Monday community. this is really all the stuff I’ve been talking about today. It’s me sharing my entire network and amazing content. And it’s all free, by the way. I wanted to just give folks personal growth and professional development tools. and access that doesn’t exist anywhere else. because I want to help people 365. just because your company doesn’t bring me in to do a big speech, how do I help? How can I serve? How can I create more impact? All connected back to my dad.

Remember, am I leading people better than I found them? So between the new book, Better Decisions, Faster, between a Win Monday community. here’s a gift that I want to share with everybody. because this will keep us connected as well. Head over to my website, Paul, and you’ll see confidence quiz across the top. It’s five minutes, It’s free. It gives you a score of one to 100 to know exactly where your confidence is today. Now here’s the beauty. Confidence is not a light switch.

 It’s not on off. It’s a dimmer switch. It can go up and come down and back and forth and back and forth. So it’s this lifelong game, this lifelong dimmer switch. So whatever your score is, 82 58 67. Wherever you’re at today, one to 100. my goal is that you grow in your confidence over time. And so along with your score. I’ll hook you up with what I believe to be the twelve keys. of building unshakable confidence on the back end. That’ll be emailed to you.

Paul Epsteins shares tips on how to boost your confidence

Paul Epstein: So main thing is for the free gift free confidence quiz. head over to Paul Take the quiz and then we will hook you up with confidence resources. That’s just something from the heart that I wanted to share.

Pamela Bardhi: Thank you so much, Paul. That’s incredible. I love that because that’s one of the biggest questions that I get. How do you boost your confidence? Well, because here’s the number one thing and the key to manifesting. when you have your goals set in mind. if you don’t believe that you’re worthy to receive them. or you’re confident that you’re going to receive them. you’re not going to receive them.

 You’re just retracting. So it’s a big piece of success, is that confidence piece. So I absolutely love that you’re honing in on that as well. And just like your new book, I’m just so excited for all the things that you’re working on. Paul, seriously, such a pleasure and an honor to have you here today. and share your story and the impact, seeds and just everything. I just want to thank you so much.

Paul Epstein: thank you, Pam. And thank you to all the underdogs for m welcoming me into your family. And I have a feeling this is not a goodbye. This is not a farewell. It’s an I’ll see you soon.

Pamela Bardhi: absolutely, Paul. Thank you again so, so much, my friend. So that’s it for today’s episode of Underdog. Catch us next week. Always dropping on Thursday days. And remember, if you’re interested in real estate. or want to learn how to create more money and magic in your life. check out and let’s chat. Sending you so, so much love.


Tune in to the episode to hear the rest of my incredible interview with Paul Epstein. If you found this story worth your time and made changes in your life, we’d love to hear from you! Subscribe and leave a review. The Underdog Podcast host is none other than Pamela Bardhi. She’s rocking the Real Estate Realm and has dedicated her life as a Life Coach. She is also Forbes Real Estate Council. To know more about Pam, check out the following:

If you’re interested in elevating your life 10x, and owning your power, Pamela invites you to join her for a 15-minute call to set your goals straight and get clarity. Start building your game plan now: