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111: Turning Adversity into Life Mastery – with Lance W. Essihos

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Your Personal Growth is on the Other Side of Whatever Adversity You Now Face

This episode is all about overcoming adversity and learning how to turn tough times, even tragedies, into growth opportunities. We get real in this episode—Lance is an open book, and he, along with our host Wade Lightheart, talk about battles with alcohol and drugs, tragic deaths in the family, career disappointments, and financial struggles. Lance has overcome misfortune and disaster and has emerged on the other side dedicated to helping others learn how to turn sorrows into blessings. 

Lance is a visionary who has experienced life through a diverse set of roles: hockey player, bartender, and now an innovative entrepreneur. He is the CEO of Mic-Up Podcast Productions, an agency that helps entrepreneurs and aspiring podcasters leverage podcasting for their business objectives. He also hosts his growing podcast called “The University of Adversity,” an innovative show where guests share their inspiring stories of overcoming incredible adversity and going on to accomplish great things.

In this podcast, we cover: 

  • How to make positive changes through adversity
  • Finding the light in life’s darkest moments
  • Why Lance calls his podcast “The University of Adversity” and what the show provides for listeners
  • The positives and negatives to being a bartender and how Lance is applying the positives to his entrepreneurial career
  • Fear – what this emotion is and how it connects to adversity
  • The tools Lance uses to manage adversity
  • Lance’s upcoming book titled Mastering Adversity

The Stepmom from Hell

Adversity came to Lance hard during his teenage years. 

Not long after moving away from his hometown, Lance’s parents divorced, and his dad remarried quickly. Suddenly, Lance had four new siblings. But what made this new arrangement extremely tough was his new stepmother. “She was right out of a movie, like a stepmom from hell. There was so much crazy that went on in those 20 years—she made our lives hell.” 

Lance shares how, over time, the pain grew so intense that he moved to Australia. The land “down under” is where much of Lance’s bartending career takes place, and it was while living in Australia that his father came for a visit—and that is when the adversity went up to a whole new level in Lance’s life. You get the full story in this episode.  

As the Dean of the University of Adversity, Lance dedicates his life to educating people of all ages on how to get a Ph.D. in Mastering Adversity

Lance has a lot to say about adversity because he has faced plenty of it already in his relatively young life. And we’re not talking about “first world problems,” like losing your cell phone. Lance has encountered some difficult situations, circumstances, and surprising twists through the years, and he is now grateful to be in a place where he can share what he has learned. 

“Adversity… is coming for you no matter what, right? So, we better get ready for it. The more you learn to face it, which usually comes in some sort of fear or anxiety, on the other side of those hard times is where the reward is. When we get that fear response, we need to lean into it. That’s when empowerment comes in, and you know on the other side you will discover a lesson that is going to bring fulfillment.” 

Lance Essihos is one of the most sincere “open books” you will ever meet. His story will inspire you. If you face adversity right now or want to be prepared for when that next inevitable challenge drops into your life, be sure to listen to this episode. You can subscribe to the University of Adversity podcast and follow Lance, so you will know when his upcoming book is available.  

Episode Resources: 
University of Adversity
Lance W. Essihos on YouTube
Lance on Instagram
Lance on LinkedIn
Lance on Facebook


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