I usually start these out with the word of the day that we use on the show, and we’re going to get to that, but today, I’m just gonna dive right in.
On the latest episode of the Overcome+Conquer Show, we had the absolute pleasure of talking to one of the most accomplished military members people–who we’ve had on the show. Army Green Beret, Special Forces trained, MMA fighter, instructor, trainer, father, brother, uncle, and son, Tim Kennedy.
But the list just starts there. His pedigree consists of a world-class athlete, Olympian, NCAA record-holder, Hall of Fame member, SWAT Detective, and we haven’t scratched the surface of what Tim has really done. We haven’t mentioned that Tim’s Olympian father stole a plane from Pablo Escobar. FIlled with, well, you know why Escobar was infamous.
So, how do you make your mark in a family with all of these special distinctions?
Work. But not just work. Tim claims he wasn’t blessed with the special abilities, or athleticism, or intelligence of the rest of his family. But what he did utilize was his work ethic. Because when you come from a family of overachievers, as Tim did, to stand out you HAVE to outwork the next guy.
And that’s the word for the day. Outwork. Defined as working longer, faster, and harder than someone else. You can be blessed with all the gifts in the world, but can still underachieve if you don’t put in the work. So, what if you don’t have the gifts, or talent, does that mean you can’t succeed? That’s the basis for Tim’s life, not having those attributes hasn’t slowed him down a bit. He just outworks the next guy.
Tim’s resumé speaks for itself. UFC Champion. Sniper in the Green Berets. MMA monster, fighting in multiple weight classes, across a few different disciplines. We did leave out one distinction, though: retired. Tim retired as a professional fighter in 2017.
So, what does a man with all that in his life do now that he’s hung up the belts? He teaches.
Tim is the owner-founder of Sheepdogresponse.com, a place where anyone can go, and be trained by a Special Forces guy in a wide range of skills. Gun safety and marksmanship, defense, tactical, vehicular skills, and more.
He’s made a life out the principles of hard work, discipline, and dedication. And he wants to pass it on to the next guy. Because as he mentions in our show, we never know where we will be when someone needs the kind of help a trained Special Forces guy can offer. The odds are slim that a military-trained person will be there for the next mass shooting or any other ungodly tragedy. So if he can train people to be able to respond, maybe we can prevent more of these from happening.
A trained fighter from a young age, Tim believes today, that the most important thing he can do is help someone be the best person they can be. He calls this part of his life, being a “force multiplier.” That means if he can increase the chances that a specially-trained person can be there for the next tragedy, then maybe, just maybe, that tragedy can be thwarted.
“I hope that there’s going to be 11 kids on there that are going to try every single day to be faster than me, who will try every single day to shoot better than me and more accurately than me, who are going to try and beat me in the shoot house. Whatever we’re doing, I want them to put the effort in to be able to beat me. And I promise, it’s not going to be easy and I’m going to be so pissed if, and I doubt they ever will, they beat me. But I will be so happy, not in front of you, but as soon as I get back. I will be like, ‘Hell yes,’ because I’ve seen the realized potential of every single one of those fellow Green Berets who are finally meeting their potential.”
He talks about being humbled and humiliated. Some people see that second word and think it’s a bad thing, but what Tim talks about is true vulnerability. And in those moments you learn what kind of person you are, and those around you. If you can take that, and use it to your advantage, then you not only learn the best parts of you, but those around also learn that you have their back.
It isn’t easy to be vulnerable. To admit that you may not have all the answers. But it’s in that space where your work ethic shines through. Do you have what it takes to outwork the next guy? To do what it takes to reach your goals, and to aspire for more?
One of the best quotes from the show is sort of a personal mantra for Tim. It’s one of the main things he wants people to take away from his training. And that’s getting out of your comfort zone.
Tim says, “…get out of lukewarm, get out of comfortable, find pain, find suffering. Then, you can enjoy sweetness.”
None of us are in our comfort zone right now. We’re all in a place where there are high levels of uncertainty. Some of us don’t know where our next check is coming from, or our next meal. We don’t know how long this crisis will last, or how we’ll recover. But Tim believes that this can be a very positive place. His perspective is that we can take that negative mindset, flip it, and get the most potential out of it. No matter what is going on, we can become better leaders. He learned that from his brother.
So, take this time, take this pandemic, and turn it into an opportunity for growth. As Tim says, “take the pain, and learn to enjoy the sweetness.”