We all say we want to be successful, but how bad do you really want it?
Motivational Speaker Eric (ET) Thomas believes you have to want it as bad as you want to breathe! This aggressive claiming of stake on personal success has been ingrained in the mind of millions due to ET’s book, videos and online success.
Lets get to know Eric and pick his brain on having the best chance at an amazing year.
What inspired you to dedicate your life to enlightening others?
The despair with our current generation. I think the story of Yummy was my moment of realization. The light went off while reading on the cover of Time magazine that an 11 year old was executed by his own gang. That was the point where I knew I had to dedicate myself to this completely. I don’t want to be seen as a motivational speaker. In essence that’s not who I am.
I want to enlighten young people that there is a better way of life.
You have choices! You can decide how you want to live and the quality of life you want. That’s what sparked me, as well as some of my own challenges in looking at myself as a victim.
You are only a victim because you’ve decided to think like a victim. When I became a victor mentally I begin to see my life change. One of defining times in my life was Yummy Sandifer and the Time article. We have to save the Yummy’s! Many of them don’t have positive role models in their lives to direct them.
How did you go from being a victim to a victor?
When people speak of despair they only refer to the external things in our neighborhoods. People from your neighborhood don’t become the President, engineers, or become leaders of Fortune 500 companies.
For me it was the demons that plagued me internally. Not having my biological father in my life and feeling this since of abandonment and rejection. You will never be anything. I was blessed that there where principals instilled in me.
Today they tools that aided in my success.
What was the motivator behind writing your book “The Secret to Success”?
Fear. I was afraid that I am not a writer and not a scholar. Also, the fear of what would it (Life) look like if I never did it? The community forced me to write it. It was that accountability that pushed me to finish the work. I wanted to put a jewel in young men’s hands.
More specifically, I’m proud that I’m looked at as the reader of the reluctant. Kids that don’t generally read are actually reading the entire book and emailing me asking questions about the book.
What are some best practices you’d like readers to come away with?
Your life is in your hands. I am not interested in your story. Everybody has a story. I’m interested in your glory and in seeing what you are going to become in ten years when you’ve put in 120% effort. You are the captain of your ship, set the course! Moving in the direction of greatness is what I want people to get out of the text.
What is the concept behind TGIM?
Thank God it’s Monday (TGIM) is simply food for thought. Weekly motivational YouTube videos that we drop each Monday to give you the boost you need to kick your week off right. It’s our energy drink!
Look, I want you to look at things differently. Everything isn’t positive but if you can learn see things in the proper perspective, you can change your place in life. That was the science behind TGIM.
Your videos have motivated people around the world, what motivates you?
Besides my faith, the work itself motivates me. I have an opportunity to be to this generation what W.E.B. Dubois was to his generation. I’ll never forget someone tweeted me stating, “You are the voice of this generation.” The level of responsibility is unbelievable.
Every day when I wake up I get a chance to inspire publisher’s like you that sends information like this out into the world. When I die, it’s not over. The world will still have the videos, the books, and the inspiration.
Leaving a legacy is what inspires me.
Do you think we have a Leadership crisis in our community currently?
I think leadership in the 21st century has to be uniquely different from the 20th century. The days of marching are over. We are a technological savvy generation and a hip hop culture. I don’t think our leaders are tapping into the pulse of the culture and leading through it. Because of that, we are not getting the results that we want. In the days of Rosa Parks there was one common cause, which was FREEDOM including economic, religious, academic, and political freedom.
We don’t have the common cause that we once had. Many of us are doing well in business and politically so it’s difficult to have a common cause.
We have to be able to tap into what our young people need and address that. Is there a leadership crisis? I don’t think so. There is however, a perspective crisis.
Follow ET on Twitter:: @EricThomasbtc
Check out ET on Youtube!