Healthy CEOI AM CEO PODCAST

IAM1070- Coach Creates Spaces for Full Self-expression and Play

Podcast Interview with Sebastian Little

Sebastian Little is dedicated to creating spaces for full self-expression and play. He operates his own coaching and consulting practice, where he partners with athletes, leaders, and teams to build leadership competencies, high-performance practices, and team culture. He is a graduate of Yale University and former varsity football player.

  • CEO Hack: (i) Being a fanatic of my calendar (ii) Calendly
  • CEO Nugget: Know when you're working on the business vs. in the business
  • CEO Defined: Freedom to create

Website: http://www.sebastianlittle.com/

IG – @SebLittle_
Twitter – @SebLittle_
Facebook – @SebastianLittlePerformance


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Transcription

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[00:00:20.30] – Intro

Are you ready to hear business stories and learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and level up your business from awesome CEOs, entrepreneurs, and founders without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresh values your time and is ready to share with you the valuable info you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO podcast.

[00:00:47.79] – Gresham Harkless

Hello. Hello. Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast. I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Sebastian Little of Sebastianlittle.com. Sebastian, it's great to have you on the show.

[00:00:55.89] – John W. Heck

Gresh, appreciate you having me, man. I'm so excited.

[00:00:58.10] – Gresham Harkless

Super excited to have you on as well. And before we jump into the interview, I want to read a little bit more about Sebastian so you can hear about some of the awesome things that he's doing. And Sebastian is dedicated to creating spaces for full self-expression and play. He operates his own coaching and consulting practice where he partners with athletes, leaders, and teams to build leadership competencies, high-performance practices, and team culture. He is a graduate of Yale University and a former varsity football player. Sebastian, great to have you on the show. Are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

[restrict paid=”true”]

[00:01:25.70] – John W. Heck

I can't wait. This is an incredible opportunity. Great community to be a part of.

[00:01:30.79] – Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. You're doing so much fun and so many phenomenal things. So what I wanted to do just you know, I touched on your bio a little bit, but I wanted to rewind the clock a little bit, hear a little more on how you got started, what I call your CEO story.

[00:01:40.09] – John W. Heck

Yeah. I've done a lot of thinking, a lot of work on this, and a lot of it built around this idea of what the journey that I've been on to be to where I'm at right now. And for me, it starts with the experience of not always feeling like I fully belonged in the spaces that I was a part of. And, I grew up with an incredibly supportive mother and grandmother, but also in a household with an absent father. So there's this balance of masculine and feminine. I identify as biracial, halfway half-black, and, I felt like there were a lot of spaces where I wasn't fully one of the black kids and one of them wasn't fully one of the white kids and lived in that racial kind of, polarity. It's the way I like to talk about it.

And when I when I got to high school, I was studious. I always wanted to do well in the classroom, and at the same time, I was excelling on the field. And, I didn't fully fit in with all the jocks, but I wasn't one of the, quote, unquote, nerds or yeah. So there's always this push and pull of not feeling like I fully belong in a world. And I figured if I wasn't going to fit in, I might as well stand out. So the solution to all of it was, let me go be great. Let me go exercise this muscle of performance of excellence, of high achievement. Right? Which can be it worked great. For what what I needed it to do, it worked great. And I did all the things I was supposed to. I won some of the awards. I went and played football at Yale University. I got a great consulting job after I graduated. What I realized is that I was trading high performance and excellence for belonging acceptance and love.

And the story of me starting my practice is one of authenticity and me leaning into myself, of me choosing to belong to myself versus choosing the way that, society's rules kind of govern the way that we want people to live. So about a year ago, I've been, in the entrepreneurship game and doing some of this work for about five or so years. But about a year ago I left my full-time consulting practice or, excuse me, I left my full-time consulting job, the kind of the corporate route, and I started my own, coaching and consulting work. And had to look back, it's been an awesome year so far, and it was a declaration of believing in myself the way that I wanted to be living. And it's it's been a blast.

[00:03:55.59] – Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Well, I appreciate you letting us behind the curtain, so to speak, and being so transparent and authentic about those, I guess, polarised. Is that even a word? Pol polarity feelings that you were having. But I think it's so big because I was reading something recently, and a lot of times, it said exactly what resonates with exactly what you just talked about where a lot of times you don't fit in because you're supposed to stand out, and the solution is not to shy away from your greatness, but to lean into that and to go and be great.

So I love that you said that because it's just a reminder that sometimes when we're not fitting in, it's not just because we're not good enough. It's sometimes because you're not supposed to be there, and you're supposed to be leaning into something else. So thank you so much for sharing that because I think it's a great reminder for us to know and lean into ourselves.

[00:04:43.00] – John W. Heck

Yeah. I love that you just pulled it out. I've been making this distinction between, self-awareness and humility recently. And I think in in our culture, we have this tendency to we wanna be anti arrogant. Right? We don't wanna be coming come across as arrogant, or full of ourselves. So what we do is we lean into humility, which speaking of polarity is typically what we associate as the opposite. So the process of leaning into humility, the way that our society, I think a lot of times, does that is it ends up being toxic. Right? We never hear of toxic humility. What that looks like is I'm gonna sanitize myself.

I'm gonna turn it down. I'm gonna tune down. I'm going to dull me so that you feel more comfortable. And I think that what you just pulled up is it's actually what lives off that spectrum is about being self-aware. Self-awareness is knowing yourself, and being so intimate with yourself. So it is when you step into a room, you're conscious of what you bring, and you don't need the filter to be great. You're not filtering to make other people comfortable, to help other people. It's actually about calling people up, calling people forth versus calling them out or pushing yourself down.

[00:05:46.89] – Gresham Harkless

Absolutely. So I know, we touched on it a little bit on what it is that you do with your clients. Could you take us through a little bit more on how that works and what that exactly looks like and work with your clients?

[00:05:56.50] – John W. Heck

Yeah. I say I work on three main buckets. I work on culture. I work on leadership, and I work on performance. And it comes out in three different ways. It's either coaching, more of a one-on-one space, facilitation, more of the team environment connecting conversations, or training, right, where you're doing a little bit more teaching, you might be building some curriculum, you're delivering content. So those are the three kinds of things I focus on and how I do them.

And what does it look like in my day to day? Somebody asked me this question the other day and it's like, well when I'm going through a basic day, I might have a couple of one-coaching sessions where I'm, really getting deep and intimate with whatever that client brings to the table. I'm lucky to do some work with teams right now. So there's a college soccer team I've been working with for a couple of years now, and we're doing some things more on leadership and meds performance. And then one of the things I've been, so fortunate to lean into has been more the diversity, equity, and inclusion conversation.

And I would get to do some training, but more so I think it's about holding space. And being in that conversation for me sits in the leadership and the culture bucket. How do we allow people to show up in their authentic selves, and play to the best of their ability? And I say play in a couple of ways. One, to enjoy themselves as they're going through the process, but also to bring their unique talents and their unique capabilities. And when we are playing together, in whatever corporate, whatever industry environment, sport environment, we're all gonna be playing at a higher level together. So that's that's how I look at and lean into that conversation.

[00:07:28.39] – Gresham Harkless

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. So I wanted to ask you for what I call your secret sauce. You might have already touched on this, but this could be for yourself the business, or a combination of both. But what do you feel sets you apart and makes you unique?

[00:07:36.80] – John W. Heck

Yeah. I've been thinking about this a lot. And in that self-awareness bucket, I've been doing a lot of work with my coach about what are the things that I bring to a space. And the thing that I'm most proud of, I've isolated this, and there's been a couple of other people talking about it. We've mentioned a few times, but it's the availability to hold polarities, to hold what we usually consider as opposites. The paradox of the either-or is kind of a seesaw effect. Well, I can either have humility or arrogance. Right?

See also  IAM681- Spiritual Coach Connects Everyone With Their Intuition

But there's something about being able to combine both of them. Or you could say I could have the the arrogance and the humility, and both of them together allow me to be confident. Right? And, specifically in the diversity, equity, and inclusion conversation, being able to hold that in a racial context has been something that I didn't realize was an asset until recently. And I think that coming from that background of being able to hold polarity has been something that's, a train but also an inherited gift. That's kind of my UPS or so.

[00:08:39.70] – Gresham Harkless

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. And so I wanted to, switch gears a little bit, and I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an app, a book, or a habit that you have, but what's something that makes you more effective and efficient? Yeah.

[00:08:49.29] – John W. Heck

I fanatical of my calendar. Like, if it's on my calendar, it's gonna happen. If it's not, it will probably fade to the background. Right? Because I'm I'm juggling, and, I like having a lot of things going on. I'm best when I'm active and doing multiple things because I'll leverage the conversation in one context for the project that I have in another. So the two things I go I can't go without, and I was thinking about what are the things that I need daily or what I reference. The first is Fantastical. Fantastical is a calendar integration system. It's always rated on Apple as one of the best ones. And I've got four or five different calendars or subscriptions set up into that one.

So I pretty much could keep myself straight. So that's one kind of time thing I leverage. The other one is Calendly. Calendly is a scheduling app. There are a couple of them right now that are competitors or, do the same type of thing. But I've got a couple of different calendars that I can send somebody a link and say, hey. Please pick a time that works for you. And it keeps you from doing the back and forth, which is specifically for solopreneurs.

You spend so much time emailing someone back and forth about a time that you wanna connect that you don't enjoy the time that like, you spend more time doing that than actually connecting. So Calendly has been huge for me because I can send somebody a link. It more or less downloads my whole calendar and then offers the times that are available for me to that person to choose from. And it has been an absolute godsend.

[00:10:17.00] – Gresham Harkless

Absolutely. I appreciate that. And so I want to ask you now for what I call a CEO nugget. So this could be a word of wisdom or a piece of advice. It might be something you would tell a client or if you hopped into a time machine, you might tell your younger business self.

[00:10:29.10] – John W. Heck

One of the first core distinctions that I made, and I heard I knew about it in some of the previous consulting work that I was doing, and we talked about it a little bit. It never made sense until I was full-time in my practice. And it was know when you're working on the business versus know when you're working in the business. Right? Because you end up having this relationship with your business. Right? And like any business, you wanna create your boundaries and you wanna, you wanna be having an empowered relationship with showing up and doing the work that you love. Right?

But there are times in which you need to step out of the relationship with your business, right, to move truly on the business. Think about the projected long-term goals. Hey. Where are we going? And I say we, meaning me and my business. Where are we going? How are we doing? What do I need more of from you? What do I need to give you more of? Right? And you have this evaluation analysis relationship by stepping out of and being on top of your business.

And, I think it's you're hearing the kind of almost, the corresponding language between any relationships, but also, like, the one with your business, but stepping out of it. And then run and then there are other times where you need to be in business, in the circle of, execution, and all those things you put on your calendar to be present and working on them, being creative, generating new ideas, working being creative, generating new ideas, working with clients, and being in it. And it didn't make sense until I had my own about what are the moments I need to step out of it or what are the moments I need to lean in.

[00:11:53.79] – Gresham Harkless

I wanted to ask you now my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO. We're hoping to have different quote-unquote CEOs on this show. So Sebastian, what does being a CEO mean to you?

[00:12:03.29] – John W. Heck

It's about having the freedom to create. The thing that I've gotten most present to about the last year has been I get to choose what I say yes to and what I say no to. And I've got a list at home. I'm visiting a friend right now, but I've got a list at home and a whiteboard, there are three reasons why I say yes to things, and there are three reasons why I say no. Why I say yes to things is because I wanna work with people that I really wanna work with on projects that align with who I am.

Why I say no to things is because it's gonna take too much time. It's gonna be too much of a headache, and we get I've gotten to know which projects or clients might be more of that recently. And having the freedom to create the type of work, the type of conversations, and probably more importantly, the type of relationships that I wanna be in are the ones that I get to say yes or no to, and that's been a gift.

[00:12:54.20] – Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. That is a tremendous gift. And I think so many times when you become a CEO when you start a business or we don't even realize sometimes in our life, you have the freedom to kinda make that decision. And I love that freedom piece because I think so many times we feel like we don't have as much control to do that. So I love that you have that, especially written on your whiteboard because I think a lot of times we're not even sure what that filter is on how to measure something that we do wanna lean into versus not wanting to lean into and do or or or not do. But I think being able to have that, but at the same time, have that written out in front of you probably helps out as far as making sure that you're staying in alignment with that.

[00:13:29.00] – John W. Heck

Yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. Truly. Well said.

[00:13:31.29] – Gresham Harkless

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Sebastian, truly appreciate that definition, and I appreciate your time even more. What I wanted to do is just pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional that you can let our readers and listeners know, and, of course, how best they can get a hold of you and find about all the awesome things you're working on.

[00:13:44.79] – John W. Heck

I'm gonna do two things here. One, I wanna make sure that I can connect with anybody listening now. But there was one one conversation I had recently that I just I was still top of mind and circulating. And I think oftentimes we say get uncomfortable get comfortable getting uncomfortable. Like, I love that phrase. I used it for years. And it wasn't until a conversation a couple of months back that I had this realization that that makes no sense. And I wanted to debunk the myth of getting comfortable getting comfortable getting uncomfortable. I can't even say it right anymore.

And I just wanna challenge people, and I just try to do this myself every day of just getting uncomfortable. Because what was uncomfortable yesterday is probably comfortable today. And if we're truly after growth and anyone listening to this podcast or anyone listening to podcasts or doing their reading or doing their coaching or therapy work. Like, we're all interested in growing ourselves or growing people around us. The challenge is not to lean into discomfort once. It's actually to stay uncomfortable, and it requires us to continue to grow our comfort zone.

So that'd be one nugget that I've been stewing on, and I try to challenge myself to do that every day. And I would love to connect. So I'm over social media. I'm on Instagram at Seb Little_ on Twitter as well. Please reach out on LinkedIn. And, of course, the new website just got published last week. There are a bunch of different resources on  www.sebastian little.com, that I'm excited about and continue to grow as well. I want it to be an active place and, a contribution, not just a landing page or information about me. So, yeah, thanks so much for having me on. It's a gift and a pleasure to share the time and the space, and this has been a blast.

[00:15:31.10] – Gresham Harkless

Definitely. This has been a blast. Thank you so much, my friend. We will have the links and information in the show notes as well too so everybody can see the two new websites and all the awesome things that you're doing and the impact that you're having. But I love that part of getting uncomfortable period not anything after that. I think that if we start to get comfortable doing anything, then that might be a sign of getting uncomfortable. We just need to get uncomfortable, period. That's it.

Or exclamation point, whatever punctuation you wanna do after that is huge. But I think that's when the growth happens. So I appreciate you for the work that you do as well too because I think part of that is getting people out of their comfort zones and to be aware of exactly, like, where that opportunity for growth and expansion is. And I think that's so necessary in this world and so many different ways. So appreciate you, my friend, again, for the work you do, and I hope you have a great rest of the day.

[00:16:12.50] – John W. Heck

Thank you

[00:16:12. -Outro

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Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

[00:00:20.30] - Intro

Are you ready to hear business stories and learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and level up your business from awesome CEOs, entrepreneurs, and founders without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresh values your time and is ready to share with you the valuable info you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO podcast.

[00:00:47.79] - Gresham Harkless

Hello. Hello. Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast. I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Sebastian Little of Sebastianlittle.com. Sebastian, it's great to have you on the show.

[00:00:55.89] - John W. Heck

Gresh, appreciate you having me, man. I'm so excited.

[00:00:58.10] - Gresham Harkless

Super excited to have you on as well. And before we jump into the interview, I want to read a little bit more about Sebastian so you can hear about some of the awesome things that he's doing. And Sebastian is dedicated to creating spaces for full self-expression and play. He operates his own coaching and consulting practice where he partners with athletes, leaders, and teams to build leadership competencies, high-performance practices, and team culture. He is a graduate of Yale University and a former varsity football player. Sebastian, great to have you on the show. Are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

[restrict paid="true"]

[00:01:25.70] - John W. Heck

I can't wait. This is an incredible opportunity. Great community to be a part of.

[00:01:30.79] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. You're doing so much fun and so many phenomenal things. So what I wanted to do just you know, I touched on your bio a little bit, but I wanted to rewind the clock a little bit, hear a little more on how you got started, what I call your CEO story. 

[00:01:40.09] - John W. Heck

Yeah. I've done a lot of thinking, a lot of work on this, and a lot of it built around this idea of what the journey that I've been on to be to where I'm at right now. And for me, it starts with the experience of not always feeling like I fully belonged in the spaces that I was a part of. And, I grew up with an incredibly supportive mother and grandmother, but also in a household with an absent father. So there's this balance of masculine and feminine. I identify as biracial, halfway half-black, and, I felt like there were a lot of spaces where I wasn't fully one of the black kids and one of them wasn't fully one of the white kids and lived in that racial kind of, polarity. It's the way I like to talk about it.

And when I when I got to high school, I was studious. I always wanted to do well in the classroom, and at the same time, I was excelling on the field. And, I didn't fully fit in with all the jocks, but I wasn't one of the, quote, unquote, nerds or yeah. So there's always this push and pull of not feeling like I fully belong in a world. And I figured if I wasn't going to fit in, I might as well stand out. So the solution to all of it was, let me go be great. Let me go exercise this muscle of performance of excellence, of high achievement. Right? Which can be it worked great. For what what I needed it to do, it worked great. And I did all the things I was supposed to. I won some of the awards. I went and played football at Yale University. I got a great consulting job after I graduated. What I realized is that I was trading high performance and excellence for belonging acceptance and love.

And the story of me starting my practice is one of authenticity and me leaning into myself, of me choosing to belong to myself versus choosing the way that, society's rules kind of govern the way that we want people to live. So about a year ago, I've been, in the entrepreneurship game and doing some of this work for about five or so years. But about a year ago I left my full-time consulting practice or, excuse me, I left my full-time consulting job, the kind of the corporate route, and I started my own, coaching and consulting work. And had to look back, it's been an awesome year so far, and it was a declaration of believing in myself the way that I wanted to be living. And it's it's been a blast.

[00:03:55.59] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Well, I appreciate you letting us behind the curtain, so to speak, and being so transparent and authentic about those, I guess, polarised. Is that even a word? Pol polarity feelings that you were having. But I think it's so big because I was reading something recently, and a lot of times, it said exactly what resonates with exactly what you just talked about where a lot of times you don't fit in because you're supposed to stand out, and the solution is not to shy away from your greatness, but to lean into that and to go and be great.

So I love that you said that because it's just a reminder that sometimes when we're not fitting in, it's not just because we're not good enough. It's sometimes because you're not supposed to be there, and you're supposed to be leaning into something else. So thank you so much for sharing that because I think it's a great reminder for us to know and lean into ourselves.

[00:04:43.00] - John W. Heck

Yeah. I love that you just pulled it out. I've been making this distinction between, self-awareness and humility recently. And I think in in our culture, we have this tendency to we wanna be anti arrogant. Right? We don't wanna be coming come across as arrogant, or full of ourselves. So what we do is we lean into humility, which speaking of polarity is typically what we associate as the opposite. So the process of leaning into humility, the way that our society, I think a lot of times, does that is it ends up being toxic. Right? We never hear of toxic humility. What that looks like is I'm gonna sanitize myself.

I'm gonna turn it down. I'm gonna tune down. I'm going to dull me so that you feel more comfortable. And I think that what you just pulled up is it's actually what lives off that spectrum is about being self-aware. Self-awareness is knowing yourself, and being so intimate with yourself. So it is when you step into a room, you're conscious of what you bring, and you don't need the filter to be great. You're not filtering to make other people comfortable, to help other people. It's actually about calling people up, calling people forth versus calling them out or pushing yourself down.

[00:05:46.89] - Gresham Harkless

Absolutely. So I know, we touched on it a little bit on what it is that you do with your clients. Could you take us through a little bit more on how that works and what that exactly looks like and work with your clients?

[00:05:56.50] - John W. Heck

Yeah. I say I work on three main buckets. I work on culture. I work on leadership, and I work on performance. And it comes out in three different ways. It's either coaching, more of a one-on-one space, facilitation, more of the team environment connecting conversations, or training, right, where you're doing a little bit more teaching, you might be building some curriculum, you're delivering content. So those are the three kinds of things I focus on and how I do them.

And what does it look like in my day to day? Somebody asked me this question the other day and it's like, well when I'm going through a basic day, I might have a couple of one-coaching sessions where I'm, really getting deep and intimate with whatever that client brings to the table. I'm lucky to do some work with teams right now. So there's a college soccer team I've been working with for a couple of years now, and we're doing some things more on leadership and meds performance. And then one of the things I've been, so fortunate to lean into has been more the diversity, equity, and inclusion conversation.

And I would get to do some training, but more so I think it's about holding space. And being in that conversation for me sits in the leadership and the culture bucket. How do we allow people to show up in their authentic selves, and play to the best of their ability? And I say play in a couple of ways. One, to enjoy themselves as they're going through the process, but also to bring their unique talents and their unique capabilities. And when we are playing together, in whatever corporate, whatever industry environment, sport environment, we're all gonna be playing at a higher level together. So that's that's how I look at and lean into that conversation. 

[00:07:28.39] - Gresham Harkless

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. So I wanted to ask you for what I call your secret sauce. You might have already touched on this, but this could be for yourself the business, or a combination of both. But what do you feel sets you apart and makes you unique?

[00:07:36.80] - John W. Heck

Yeah. I've been thinking about this a lot. And in that self-awareness bucket, I've been doing a lot of work with my coach about what are the things that I bring to a space. And the thing that I'm most proud of, I've isolated this, and there's been a couple of other people talking about it. We've mentioned a few times, but it's the availability to hold polarities, to hold what we usually consider as opposites. The paradox of the either-or is kind of a seesaw effect. Well, I can either have humility or arrogance. Right?

But there's something about being able to combine both of them. Or you could say I could have the the arrogance and the humility, and both of them together allow me to be confident. Right? And, specifically in the diversity, equity, and inclusion conversation, being able to hold that in a racial context has been something that I didn't realize was an asset until recently. And and I think that coming from that background of being able to hold polarity has been something that's, a train but also an inherited gift. That's kind of my UPS or so.  

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[00:08:39.70] - Gresham Harkless

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. And so I wanted to, switch gears a little bit, and I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be like an app, a book, or a habit that you have, but what's something that makes you more effective and efficient? Yeah.

[00:08:49.29] - John W. Heck

I fanatical of my calendar. Like, if it's on my calendar, it's gonna happen. If it's not, it will probably fade to the background. Right? Because I'm I'm juggling, and, I like having a lot of things going on. I'm best when I'm active and doing multiple things because I'll leverage the conversation in one context for the project that I have in another. So the two things I go I can't go without, and I was thinking about what are the things that I need daily or what I reference. The first is Fantastical. Fantastical is a calendar integration system. It's always rated on Apple as one of the best ones. And I've got four or five different calendars or subscriptions set up into that one.

So I pretty much could keep myself straight. So that's one kind of time thing I leverage. The other one is Calendly. Calendly is a scheduling app. There are a couple of them right now that are competitors or, do the same type of thing. But I've got a couple of different calendars that I can send somebody a link and say, hey. Please pick a time that works for you. And it keeps you from doing the back and forth, which is specifically for solopreneurs.

You spend so much time emailing someone back and forth about a time that you wanna connect that you don't enjoy the time that like, you spend more time doing that than actually connecting. So Calendly has been huge for me because I can send somebody a link. It more or less downloads my whole calendar and then offers the times that are available for me to that person to choose from. And it has been an absolute godsend.

[00:10:17.00] - Gresham Harkless

Absolutely. I appreciate that. And so I want to ask you now for what I call a CEO nugget. So this could be a word of wisdom or a piece of advice. It might be something you would tell a client or if you hopped into a time machine, you might tell your younger business self.

[00:10:29.10] - John W. Heck

One of the first core distinctions that I made, and I heard I knew about it, you know, in some of the previous consulting work that I was doing, and we talked about it a little bit. It never made sense until I was full-time in my practice. And it was know when you're working on the business versus know when you're working in the business. Right? Because you end up having this relationship with your business. Right? And like any business, you wanna create your boundaries and you wanna, you wanna be having an empowered relationship with showing up and doing the work that you love. Right?

But there are times in which you need to step out of the relationship with your business, right, to move truly on the business. Think about the projected long-term goals. Hey. Where are we going? And I say we, meaning me and my business. Where are we going? How are we doing? What do I need more of from you? What do I need to give you more of? Right? And you have this evaluation analysis relationship by stepping out of and being on top of your business.

And, I think it's you're hearing the kind of almost, the corresponding language between any relationships, but also, like, the one with your business, but stepping out of it. And then run and then there are other times where you need to be in business, in the circle of, execution, and all those things you put on your calendar to be present and working on them, being creative, generating new ideas, working being creative, generating new ideas, working with clients, and being in it. And it didn't make sense until I had my own about what are the moments I need to step out of it or what are the moments I need to lean in.

[00:11:53.79] - Gresham Harkless

I wanted to ask you now my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO. We're hoping to have different quote-unquote CEOs on this show. So Sebastian, what does being a CEO mean to you?

[00:12:03.29] - John W. Heck

It's about having the freedom to create. The thing that I've gotten most present to about the last year has been I get to choose what I say yes to and what I say no to. And I've got a list at home. I'm visiting a friend right now, but I've got a list at home and a whiteboard, there are three reasons why I say yes to things, and there are three reasons why I say no. Why I say yes to things is because I wanna work with people that I really wanna work with on projects that align with who I am.

Why I say no to things is because it's gonna take too much time. It's gonna be too much of a headache, and we get I've gotten to know which projects or clients might be more of that recently. And having the freedom to create the type of work, the type of conversations, and probably more importantly, the type of relationships that I wanna be in are the ones that I get to say yes or no to, and that's been a gift.

[00:12:54.20] - Gresham Harkless

Yeah. Absolutely. That is a tremendous gift. And I think so many times when you become a CEO when you start a business or we don't even realize sometimes in our life, you have the freedom to kinda make that decision. And I love that freedom piece because I think so many times we feel like we don't have as much control to do that. So I love that you have that, especially written on your whiteboard because I think a lot of times we're not even sure what that filter is on how to measure something that we do wanna lean into versus not wanting to lean into and do or or or not do. But I think being able to have that, but at the same time, have that written out in front of you probably helps out as far as making sure that you're staying in alignment with that.

[00:13:29.00] - John W. Heck

Yeah. Absolutely. Yeah. Truly. Well said.

[00:13:31.29] - Gresham Harkless

Awesome. Awesome. Awesome. Sebastian, truly appreciate that definition, and I appreciate your time even more. What I wanted to do is just pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional that you can let our readers and listeners know, and, of course, how best they can get a hold of you and find about all the awesome things you're working on. 

[00:13:44.79] - John W. Heck

I'm gonna do two things here. One, I wanna make sure that I can connect with anybody listening now. But there was one one conversation I had recently that I just I was still top of mind and circulating. And I think oftentimes we say get uncomfortable get comfortable getting uncomfortable. Like, I love that phrase. I used it for years. And it wasn't until a conversation a couple of months back that I had this realization that that makes no sense. And I wanted to debunk the myth of getting comfortable getting comfortable getting uncomfortable. I can't even say it right anymore.

And I just wanna challenge people, and I just try to do this myself every day of just getting uncomfortable. Because what was uncomfortable yesterday is probably comfortable today. And if we're truly after growth and anyone listening to this podcast or anyone listening to podcasts or doing their reading or doing their coaching or therapy work. Like, we're all interested in growing ourselves or growing people around us. The challenge is not to lean into discomfort once. It's actually to stay uncomfortable, and it requires us to continue to grow our comfort zone.

So that'd be one nugget that I've been stewing on, and I try to challenge myself to do that every day. And I would love to connect. So I'm over social media. I'm on Instagram at Seb Little_ on Twitter as well. Please reach out on LinkedIn. And, of course, the new website just got published last week. There are a bunch of different resources on  www.sebastian little.com, that I'm excited about and continue to grow as well. I want it to be an active place and, a contribution, not just a landing page or information about me. So, yeah, thanks so much for having me on. It's a gift and a pleasure to share the time and the space, and this has been a blast.

[00:15:31.10] - Gresham Harkless

Definitely. This has been a blast. Thank you so much, my friend. We will have the links and information in the show notes as well too so everybody can see the two new websites and all the awesome things that you're doing and the impact that you're having. But I love that part of getting uncomfortable period not anything after that. I think that if we start to get comfortable doing anything, then that might be a sign of getting uncomfortable. We just need to get uncomfortable, period. That's it.

Or exclamation point, whatever punctuation you wanna do after that is huge. But I think that's when the growth happens. So I appreciate you for the work that you do as well too because I think part of that is getting people out of their comfort zones and to be aware of exactly, like, where that opportunity for growth and expansion is. And I think that's so necessary in this world and so many different ways. So appreciate you, my friend, again, for the work you do, and I hope you have a great rest of the day.

[00:16:12.50] - John W. Heck

Thank you

[00:16:12. -Outro

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

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Mercy - CBNation Team

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(CEOBlogNation.com), podcasts, (CEOPodcasts.com) and videos (CBNation.tv). CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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