Special Bonus Episode: A Major Announcement and How to Make Difficult Decisions


Special Bonus Episode: A Major Announcement and How to Make Difficult Decisions

In order for me to focus on my health (as I’m transitioning from chemotherapy to holistic treatments), I’ve recently had to make some very difficult decisions.

On today’s special *BONUS* episode of the podcast, I’m sharing the biggest decision I’ve recently made—a HUGE announcement—and (most importantly) the process by which you can more easily and effectively make major decisions in your life.

As a fellow human being, you know how much energy it takes to make decisions, no matter how simple they are. But when you’re facing a MAJOR decision—the kind that isn’t black and white, where you might have multiple options, and where your actions could affect your life for months (or years) to come—making the right decision is often challenging.

One of these decisions (which you’ll hear about in this episode), means that the upcoming Best Year Ever [Blueprint] live experience (taking place this December 13-15th) will be the last time we ever offer this event. 

If you’ve ever wanted to join me in person at the Best Year Ever [Blueprint] live experience, taking place this December 13-15th, this will be your last chance.

This is the last time we’re offering the event, and it’s nearly sold out.

In case you’re not familiar, BYEB is a weekend event that will enable you to take your SELF to the next level so that you can take your LIFE to the next level—because, as you know, it only happens in that order! :^)

Every year, 400+ members of The Miracle Morning Community (from around the world) fly into San Diego, California and come together to connect and co-create our future, together. And I’d love for you to join us!

Check out the brand new website at BestYearEverLive.com to get all the details and secure your spot for what is guaranteed to be another life-changing weekend for all of us.

On to the actual podcast! This was pretty powerful.


Jon Berghoff

All of us can benefit from questioning the logic that opportunities are non-negotiable.


  • How to listen and act on intuition, especially when making multiple decisions at once.
  • What to do to align your decisions with your highest values and priorities.
  • How to step into the unknown in the face of uncertainty.
  • And much more…



If you enjoyed this post and received value from this episode, please leave a quick comment below and SHARE with your friends. Thank YOU for paying it forward! :^)

COMMENT QUESTION: What is your big takeaway? Write it in the comments below.


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Get a $1 (7-day Trial) of Hal Elrod’s “Best Year Ever Coaching” program at




Hal Elrod: Hey, Achieve Your Goals Podcast listeners and members of the Miracle Morning Community, we are live in the Miracle Morning Community broadcasting via Facebook Live. This is your host, Hal Elrod, and my good friend and the occasional co-host of the Achieve Your Goals Podcast, Jon Berghoff. And today is a special episode for quite a few reasons. We’re going to be announcing a major shift in our world, both Jon and I, and I think many of you will be really interested to hear that. And most importantly, Jon and I will share our thought process behind making any major life or career decision. And we’re going to answer questions today like, number one, how do we learn to listen, and most importantly, act on intuition, especially in the face of multiple decisions at once. We’re going to talk about how do you align your actions, decisions, thoughts, with your highest values and priorities and how do we find the courage to step into a place of unknown in spite of tremendous fear and uncertainty. And so, that and a lot more I think this will be really, really powerful for you. 


If you’ve been a longtime listener of the Achieve Your Goals Podcast or if you’ve attended our Best Year Ever Blueprint Events or been a member of our QLM Mastermind, you are probably pretty familiar or very familiar with Jon Berghoff, who actually did step in for me and host the Achieve Your Goals Podcast while I was in the hospital undergoing cancer treatment, so you may have been listening during that time. But in case you are new to the Achieve Your Goals Podcast or the Miracle Morning Community, I want to tell you a little bit about Jon. And first and foremost, I’ll start where it all began for the two of us and our really special you could call it a – it’s a very special relationship.


Jon Berghoff: It started in a queen-sized bed, didn’t it? 


Hal Elrod: It started sleeping in the same bed like weeks after we had met. It was very, very that’s a longer story. 


Jon Berghoff: It’s a conventional friendship really. 


Hal Elrod: Yeah, totally. We were roommates in the year 1999 and he’s been one of my best friends for the past two 20 years. In fact, I was a groomsman in Jon’s wedding. He actually officiated my wedding for my wife and I, Ursula, and our families, our friends. And for the past five years, we’ve been partners in leading the Best Year Ever Blueprint Live Experience as well as the Quantum Leap Mastermind, but professionally, Jon, his focus, and you’ll hear about this today a little bit, but he’s the co-founder and president of XCHANGE. And XCHANGE has led large collaborative summits for organizations that include BMW, Fathom, Boeing Corporation, Vitamix Corporation, the City of Cleveland. I could go on and on and on. But his real focus has become kind of duplicating his own genius, if you will, and teaching coaches and consultants how to create massive value for companies, communities, and various organizations or groups that they serve. And then today, we’re going to talk about, as I said, this major shift that we’re making and the lessons that it’s taught us that we’re going to pay forward and share with you. And so, today’s episode, there’s kind of two parts. In fact, Jon, you want to share what are the two parts that we’re going to cover today?


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. So, I guess, yeah, you could say this will be a two-part conversation. And the second thing we’re going to talk about is the Best Year Ever Blueprint, which is coming up in five weeks. And what we’re going to talk about specifically are in the last six years, what are some of the lessons that we’ve learned, Hal and I, from hosting this event? You think about it hundreds of you, 300, 400, 500 of you have come together every December for six years and we get in a room and there’s this incredible spirit of community and a culture that’s been created and we’ve had incredible guest speakers who have graced the stage at Best Year Ever. And we’ve learned a lot and so we thought, “Hey, we’ll share with you some of the big learnings from hosting that event.” Right? And we have this kind of unique perspective being the host that it’s just a lot of fun to think about that. On that note, we know a lot of you listening will be with us in December. 


And the event, we don’t actually know if we still have seats to sell. I think we sold 15 seats over the last couple days and I say that because we’ve either oversold by about 20 seats or we still have about 75 left. True story. We never know how to actually, we don’t know like if you’re in the event business, you don’t know how to account for certain seats that have been bought that sometimes people don’t actually claim so that… 


Hal Elrod: So, people buy tickets to bring a guest but then they don’t bring their guests half the time and so, yeah, it ends up being kind of imprecise science.


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. At least the way we do it. So, long story longer, we’re likely done selling seats in the next couple of weeks, which is cool and we can’t wait to see all of you at the Best Year Ever Blueprint. But that’s the second part of our conversation today because before we get to that, we have a huge, dramatic, we need like sound effects. I wish Carrie was here, right? We have a big announcement to make and how you already said it. So, I’ll just reinforce that I think that our goal in sharing with you this major decision that we’ve made is to share with you what we’ve learned in the process of making a big, complex, high stakes decision. Because whether you’re an entrepreneur or you’re a mom or a teacher, or it doesn’t really matter, I think every one of us can relate to in life. I mean, you think about how much energy it takes even to make simple decisions. Like, Hal, I learned from you, you wear the same thing at every event and you’ve got that idea probably from Steve Jobs. I started doing the same. 


Hal Elrod: He got it from me. Yeah. 


Jon Berghoff: Yeah, he got it from you. Yeah, because the energy it takes to make decisions is it’s real. And so, I think one of the things we can all relate to is in our lives, it’s not the small ones that really get to us. It’s the big ones where it’s not a black or white decision where there’s a lot at stake, and in our hearts, in our heads are pulling us in lots of directions. And it’s even tougher when you’re trying to choose between multiple great options, right? Like, if I’ve got an option that looks great and an option that doesn’t look great, that’s easy. But in our case, we had to make a huge decision that’s really taken us a few years. And how the last thing I’d say before we actually announced this is I think it’s important, I’ll speak for myself on this, to declare that as we’ve gotten to this big decision for our businesses, it’s really a life decision. I think a lot of what we’re going to share doesn’t come from a place of Hal and I have mastered the art of making big decisions. I would actually argue that a lot of what we’ve learned comes from spending a couple of years not knowing how the heck to make this decision. 


So, I just want to put that out there that our hope would be that as we share not only this announcement but what we’ve learned from it, you cannot make some of the mistakes that we’ve made, which sometimes are expensive, sometimes we skate by, but at the end of it we’re really excited about kind of where we’re going and what’s happening. So, that was a big tease. I’m just trying to build some suspense, buddy. I don’t know… 


Hal Elrod: Are those headphones? Are you using the mic in those headphones?


Jon Berghoff: Oh, is it not plugged in? 


Hal Elrod: No, your audio is amazing. I’m sorry. I was ADHD right there. I was just like, “Wow. Jon’s audio is really good. Is he just using the little mic on the headphones?”


Jon Berghoff: No. I have an amplifier inside my vocal cords and I… 


Hal Elrod: Got it. 


Jon Berghoff: It’s just a natural biological mixing board that I’m leveraging.


Hal Elrod: Awesome. So, should we share the announcement and then kind of break it down?


Jon Berghoff: I mean, we could drag it on a little longer. We’ve gotten this far. Yeah, go for it, buddy. Go for it. Please take the honor. You think that we’d like rehearsed how are we going to say these things but… 


Hal Elrod: Yeah. Anyone that followed us knows that it’s always from the heart and off the cuff, which I don’t know if there’s an ability in that.


Jon Berghoff: Better for them to watch us make the sausage in real-time. Alright, so go ahead, buddy. Share. 


Hal Elrod: All right. So, here it is. Would this be our sixth year for Best Year Ever Blueprint by the way?


Jon Berghoff: Six years for Best Year Ever Blueprint and this will have been our fifth year running the Quantum Leap Mastermind.


Hal Elrod: Got it. And so, the Best Year Blueprint started between Jon and I, we ran the first one in 2014 so, yeah, this will be our sixth year and as he said, it’s been profound. One of my favorite testimonials was a picture of one of our couples. In fact, I’m blanking on their names. You know who I’m talking about? 


Jon Berghoff: Ted Brockman. 


Hal Elrod: Yeah, Ted Brockman and he and his wife said it was better than any marriage counseling he’d ever been to and I just share that because that to me was really a reflection of it was whatever you bring to the event, whatever intention you bring, that’s what you leave with, you know, whether it’s saving your marriage or making money or being happy or achieving goals, whatever it is, that’s what you get out of it. And so, the event’s been incredible and this why it’s been so hard to make the decision and the decision is this is the last year that we’re ever going to run the Best Year Ever Blueprint Event. And so, this is our last year. We’ve talked about for years, “Hey, how long should we do this?” And we never had a long-term plan. And I’m just going to go right into what prompted this decision initially. 


You know, it’s me reaching out to Jon, as you all probably know, I’ve been battling cancer for the last three years. In fact, the day before yesterday was the three-year anniversary of me being diagnosed with cancer and being told I had a 20% to 30% chance of surviving and having to share that news with my family. And I learned a lot of lessons and I was really grateful for the cancer journey that I was on, well, I thought that I was on in terms of being in the hospital on chemotherapy, fighting cancer. What a lot of you may not know is I still take chemotherapy every day, and it’s had some really detrimental effects on my mental health, if you will, to be really transparent. I’ve been suffering for the first time in my life with anxiety and depression and things that make no logical sense. Like, my life’s great. I have everything to be happy about but something’s happening in my brain. And so, I just told Jon, I said, “Hey, I need to take 2020, buddy, and I need to focus on my health. I need to become an expert in my health. I don’t need to market an event. I don’t need to market a mastermind. I just need to focus on my health so that I can be alive for me and for him, but primarily for my family.” 


And I’ll be honest with you, and this is actually I think this is the first lesson we can pull out of this, Jon. I’ll be honest with you. It was not a conversation I wanted to have with Jon. In my own head, my internal dialogue is, “Oh, Jon’s going to be so disappointed. He’s going to be upset. He’s going to push back really hard and say, ‘No, no, no, we got to keep doing the event. Let’s do it right,’” and I had all those fears and insecurities and concerns. But I had to have the conversation anyway. I had to honor my intuition, which we’ll talk about later. honor my intuition, which was saying everything in my body and soul and mind and heart was saying, “Hal, you’ve got to take care of your body.” If you don’t make your health your priority, you already learned the lesson once, you know, I don’t want to learn it twice, which is my health wasn’t my priority before and then I suffered the consequences. And so, I reached out to Jon. And, Jon, we literally had this call, what, two days ago?


Jon Berghoff: Yeah, yeah. Maybe it was like 12 minutes ago.


Hal Elrod: It was. Yeah, but we’re still having it. But, no, I reached out to Jon and it took a little courage to do that. You have to tap into your courage to have difficult conversations either with yourself or the people in your life when you’re making major decisions. And so, I reached out to Jon and, thankfully, one of the beautiful things that came out of the conversation was really a strengthening of our friendship because there was no pushback from Jon. There was no trying to convince me otherwise. There was only authentic listening and caring and really empathy. We get emotional. I love you, buddy. 


Jon Berghoff: I love you too, buddy.


Hal Elrod: And he said, “I totally get it,” and then you know he said, “Let’s talk about options. This could be the last event.” We talked through a few different options and explored options and he said, “Why don’t you sleep on it. Talk to your wife. Talk to Ursula. Talk to your kids and let’s talk again tomorrow,” which was yesterday and yesterday I called and said, “Hey, I thought about it and I need a full year where I can just focus on my health and nothing else,” and he said, “All right. Let’s make the announcement,” and we just were like, “Hey, let’s do a podcast. Hey, let’s stream in the Facebook group.” So, this is literally as you can see, this is not a well-executed plan. It’s been two days of like talking through this and deciding what’s the best way to share this with you, with the world and, yeah, so Jon, I’ll leave it at that and let you pick it up where I left off.


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. I think it’s a genius-ly executed announcement, buddy. I think it’s genius. Well, yeah, it’s enjoyable for me to actually be a listener and a co-host and it’s fun to see some of our good friends for many years on the live stream, Hal, giving you a lot of shout outs and you probably don’t have it open on your screen, but Sandy, Rochelle, Jessica, Adam Stock, Caroline, Myria. It’s super cool, buddy. So, people are big fans of what we’re deciding to do here. So, I think I just want to reflect to everybody, you know, there’s something – Hal and I have a mutual friend by the name of Braden DeLonay. And I think Braden actually teaches your kids. He’s a primitive survivalist teacher and he teaches different wisdom traditions that go back to really indigenous practices. And, Hal, I don’t know if you’re familiar with one of the stories that he tells but one of the stories that he tells that is a story that has been told for thousands of years is a story about the origin of death. And one of the things that he teaches through this story is this timeless wisdom that for something new to be born in our lives, something old must die. 


And when I when I think about our journey of hosting the Best Year Ever Blueprint Event, like you said, Hal, we’ve had a conversation every year for about three or four years thinking, should we do this again? Should we do this again? And it’s never been an easy decision because we’ve always had energetically been pulled into different opportunities. And we’ve chosen to continue to put the event on and I think what you and I both have really enjoyed over the last year of our lives is through the struggles that we each had amidst lots of successes, is just the reminders that we really have to be willing to let go of the very things in our lives that there may have been a point in time where we were saying to ourselves, “This is the last thing we should ever let go of.” And I think that’s one of the biggest lessons for me is the realization that the very commitments, the very decisions, the very same opportunities that we sometimes convince ourselves are non-negotiable, that all of us can benefit from time to time. 


If we can stop and question that logic and question the idea that we have to do something just because it creates a lot of benefits for other people, just because it’s a big economic opportunity. I mean, let’s be super transparent, Best Year Ever and QLM, you add up all the revenue, anybody can do that looking at how many people are there. Every year it’s a $600,000, $700,000 revenue, those two events combined. There’s cost involved but it’s certainly a decision that comes with financial consequences. And so, it’s not like this is just, “Hey, are we going to do it or are not going to do it?” There’s a lot behind it. And I think one of the things I respect about you, Hal, is and maybe it’s why for me it was an easier conversation than maybe you thought it would be because I too really think it’s important that we ask, what in our lives do we need to allow to die so that something new can be born? 


And there’s one other thing that you said, Hal, that I think is a great reminder for us and that is you’ve talked about listening to your heart. And I’ve been the last year, in fact, if you’re watching the live stream, I’m holding up the book here called the Heart Intelligence. And the subtitle is connecting with the intuitive guidance of the heart and this copy was signed by all of the founders of the HeartMath Institute. Actually, next week, I’m facilitating and leading the Global HeartMath Conference down in Mexico and it’s a great honor. But I’m new to understanding the depth of the science behind the statement that you made, Hal, and what I’ve learned in the last year or so is that there is an empirically proven relationship between the intelligence of the heart and our ability to actually tap into our intuition. And many of the practices that we talk about in this community, practices of gratitude and affirmations and journaling and exercise, I mean, the whole SAVERS model. Every one of these is actually a vehicle for connecting us more closely to the intelligence of the heart. 


And so, I just want to reiterate that the heart is always the smartest guy on what to do. The challenge is can we get to a place of quiet. Can we get to a place of stillness where we can actually hear the signals of the heart instead of the loud voices of the mind? And so, I want to honor you, Hal, for inviting me to also listen to, “Hey, what is our deeper what I would call our evolutionary purpose?” In other words, how is the world calling us to do something differently? In your case, it’s honoring your health. In my case, I’m certain this is going to create an energetic opening to serve our XCHANGE Community, the folks that we teach how to lead groups. So, those are a couple of the big lessons from this process of making a decision and, Hal, you and I didn’t talk about this before this so people get to hear us just think it out loud for the first time. 


But I wonder if there’s any lessons we could share too in how to approach these kinds of decisions in a partnership. You talked about this a minute ago. A lot of people who have business partners. Oftentimes what makes a decision difficult is not just how I’m going to make the decision but whether it’s a business partner, a spouse, or a colleague or a coworker, it’s how do we do this as a team? Because everybody has different levels of attachment to the outcomes and the decision. So, I don’t know if there’s anything we want to share about that. Maybe we’ve already shared enough.


Hal Elrod: Let’s circle back to that and I wrote that down as you said it but I wanted to answer this question. I had some thoughts come up while you were talking because I wasn’t listening. I was thinking of what I might say. But, no, I was looking at the question that we had kind of shared that we would answer today. The first one is how do we learn to listen, and more importantly, act on intuition and especially in the face of multiple decisions at once. And I think that is one of the hardest things for all of us to do is listen to intuition, right? We need proof. We need evidence that this is the right choice. This is the safe choice and there’s a lot of risk or at least perceived risk when it comes to listening to our intuition, listening to our heart, because how do we know it’s true? And how do we know, wait, is that just my brain? Is that my insecurities? Is that my past programming? Or is that my heart? Is that my intuition? How do I differentiate? And I want to share some practical ways to approach that. 


And here’s really, in order for your intuition to be a powerful guide, arguably, the guide that you make your decisions from, the place that they’re born from, I would say that you need to develop, we all have to develop confidence in our intuition, right? So, that’s relatively simple and straightforward. If you want to be able to trust your intuition, you have to develop confidence in your intuition. Just like if you want to trust a person and their advice, you have to have confidence in their advice, right? Well, if your intuition is giving advice, you’d have to have confidence in it and that is done – so, how do you develop confidence in your intuition? It’s done by taking risks and getting results. The same way you develop confidence in any area of your life, you take a risk. You do something you’ve never done before and you get a result and then you assess, evaluate, and evaluate that result. Is that a good result? Is that a bad result? Is that a result I can live with? Is it a result I want more of? Is it a result I can improve upon? And in that, you develop confidence in your ability. 


So, what I would recommend is, first, understanding that okay for me to really turn intuition into this radically powerful tool, Jon mentioned, get quiet first. You’ve got to get your brain into that alpha state through meditation or first thing in the morning, last thing at night. A lot of times I just now when I wake up in the morning, I lay in bed for 10 minutes and I talk to my intuition. You could call it talking to God, but to develop confidence what you have to do is, again, take risks and get results. So, what I would encourage you to do is start very small, start very small. And here’s what I would look at is look at your daily choices and look at that voice in your head. I believe that is your highest consciousness that says, “Don’t eat that. You know that’s bad for you,” and you go, “Shut up. I really want this. You see that melted cheese and that fried. That’s amazing. Shut up, intuition.” But your intuition is guiding you toward choices that will benefit your life, your spirit, your mind, your body, and your soul.  


And so, in order to tap intuition, start small. Start with your food choices. Start when the intuition says, “Hey, get out of bed,” and you go, “No, I just want to lay here unconscious and sleep longer,” even though you’ve gotten your six, seven, eight hours or whatever right? Listen to your intuition. And so, let’s start with the food choices. Let’s keep it focused. Listen to your intuition. Choose the thing that benefits your body the most and then afterwards, evaluate the result. How do I feel after I ate this living fruit or vegetable or another seed versus something that was dead or package or processed? So, the beauty of it is your intuition says it tells you to do the right thing that benefits your body, mind, and soul. You do that thing, you evaluate your result, and if it’s a good result, now you have confidence, “Oh, that little voice in my head, it actually knows what the hell it’s talking about. I’m going to start listening to it more often.” So, start with small things, start with food choices, and make baby steps up to bigger choices, because that’s something I have had to do and, Jon, you’ve had to do it too, I know, is you got to step off a cliff with the big choices, and you have to fail forward. You have to just go all right. I’m willing to take the risk, and I’m willing to see what happens. But it’s easier if you start small and work your way up to the bigger choices.


Jon Berghoff: Hal, as you talk about intuition, I’m going to read a quote from this book on the Heart Intelligence and one of the great honors for me in the last several months has been to become good friends with Rollin McCraty, who’s maybe one of the head scientists for the HeartMath Institute, and one of the things that he writes in chapter three, and the title of the chapter is called The Intuitive Heart and I’m just going to read this sentence. He says, “From my own experience and my observation of others, I realized that the lack of alignment between what our mind says and what our intuitive heart is quietly trying to tell us can be one of the biggest unrecognized sources of stress.” I’m going to read that again, that lack of alignment between what our mind says and what our intuitive heart is quietly trying to tell us can be one of the biggest unrecognized sources of stress. And that quote really hits home for me and that’s literally what you just said, Hal, is how do we balance this intuitive guidance with these voices that come from the head? 


And I think you just said it really beautifully. I think what you reminded us is that it’s a skill that can be developed and there’s different types of intuition. You know, some of us have experienced what some people call energetic intuition where when you walk into a room and you’re with another person or a group of people, you immediately feel their energy. Well, we can now measure. There’s actually an energetic pulse that we send outward but even if you don’t know about that science, even if you are not aware that we actually send out these frequencies, we all have had this intuitive guidance from time to time where we immediately sense something in another person, right? That’s one example of just another type of intuition. But I love what you said, buddy, and I hope that everyone who’s listening can really consider this question of how can I create the quietness and the discipline to listen to my intuition? Anything else we want to say about this decision and if anybody jumped into the live stream late, this is the last year that we’re running the Best Year Ever Blueprint and the Quantum Leap Mastermind event. 


By the way, we’re going out with a bang. We’ve got JP Sears doing a one-hour performance that will be like nothing that he’s delivered or you’ve ever seen. He’s doing something really special for us. We have Allana Pratt, a world-renowned intimacy expert. We’ve got Christopher Lochhead coming back bigger and better than ever. 


Hal Elrod: [Inaudible – 27:24]


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. He’s the number one marketing podcast. He’s the number one podcaster in the whole business category. He’s going to be wowing us once again. We’ve got Geoff Woods, who’s the head of the entire ONE Thing organization, who finally we brought in a professional to lead goal setting, but you and I fumble through it as we tell people.


Hal Elrod: We speak it every year. 


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. We’re like, “Hey, by the way, we’re not really qualified to help you set goals even though that’s why you’re here.” So, we made a big investment. We’ve got Geoff Woods coming in to lead a several-hour workshop on Sunday morning. 


Hal Elrod: And I will say I had Geoff on the podcast which Jon and I both worked with Geoff. But when I had Geoff on the podcast in December, I think talking about goals for 2019, I called Jon, I said, “We have to get Geoff Woods to Best Year Ever. I’ve never heard anyone talk about goals as effectively as Geoff did.” And Jon said, “Yep, I’ve heard him talk about it. Let’s do it.” So, excited for that. 


Jon Berghoff: By the way, I mentioned earlier that I’ve been doing a lot of work with the founders of the HeartMath Institute. We’re going to be leading every morning, even just for a few minutes, a heart-mind coherence meditation. And it’s a practice we started bringing into all the events we run. It’s simple, but it’s powerful. Of course, we have brotha James. Of course, we have Jon Vroman and I’m forgetting we have Ben Hardy coming in.


Hal Elrod: Oh, he just confirmed. I didn’t realize. 


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. I forgot like this is…


Hal Elrod: Ben Hardy’s the number one blogger on Medium.


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. This is why we’re barely qualified to run events because we have a world-class lineup lined up and we haven’t told anybody. 


Hal Elrod: Yeah. 


Jon Berghoff: Anyways, needless to say. 


Hal Elrod: We’re terrible at marketing events but great at running them, right?


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. So, we’re going big this year. We want to go out with a bang and, again, if you just tuned in, it’s our last year doing BYEB and we’ve spent the last 20 minutes talking about kind of what we’ve learned through as partners making the decision. And by the way, we’re not done as partners. We’ll probably talk to each other more often. We’ll probably enjoy each other more.


Hal Elrod: Yeah. It won’t be strict business talk. We can actually just talk about the families.


Jon Berghoff: Yeah. And I think we’re going to have a lot of other ways we collaborate but we’re sunsetting Best Year Ever and QLM to create space for other things in our lives. Hal, maybe we take the last few minutes here and shift gears and talk about maybe some of the biggest lessons that we’ve learned hosting this event. I’m happy to kick it off unless you want to start because I think whether or not someone’s going to join us for the last Best Year Ever Blueprint that’s ever going to be run and it will sell out. Like we said a few minutes ago, we think it may have sold out. We’re just not, we don’t know how to account for unregistered guests, which is a whole conundrum. But anyways, so there’ll be 450 of us at the Manchester Grand Hyatt in San Diego, December 13, 14, 15. But if you can’t make it, we still want to share some of the big lessons that have come from that event, what it’s all about. So, if you want to lead it off or I’m happy to go, whatever you want.


Hal Elrod: Well, I’ll lead it off in this way. I’ll lead it off in a very soft way. 


Jon Berghoff: I like that. 


Hal Elrod: You know, I’ve said this before but when somebody asked me what makes the Best Year Ever Blueprint so special? And I said, “Unconditional love.” And they go, “What does that mean?” I go, “Yeah, you know, it’s hard to put on a website. I think it’s hard to market that,” but that’s what I felt. They asked me at last year’s event at the end of it, “How do you feel?” and I said, “I’ve never been in a room of 450 people where there was this space created that was to me in my the language I would use it was rooted in unconditional love for each other.” And really just you think about the Miracle Morning community as this community of like-minded people that are loving and supporting each other to become our best and to have that in a room live, it was really special. And because of the unconditional love, with unconditional love, comes vulnerability. People feel safe to be vulnerable when they feel like they are loved unconditionally and through vulnerability come breakthroughs. That’s when we tap into our own self-love, our own inner wisdom as well as the wisdom of each other. And that’s what I see happen more and more every year at Best Year Ever. And last year was the pinnacle. 


So, I don’t know how this year will be better. If it’s even as good, right, I mean, but it really is something where you come as you are. You don’t have to come and put on an air of, “I’ve got it all figured out and I’m successful.” No. You come as you are as a human being, as a spiritual being, and then you tap into your greatest strengths and wisdom and you leave there as the next version of who you need to be to show up in your world, in your work, in your family, in your life, to amplify and improve and evolve and elevate every part of your life. And that to me, in a nutshell, is what the Best Year Ever Blueprint is all about.


Jon Berghoff: So, I obviously didn’t know this is where we would start, buddy, but I couldn’t be happier that this is what you shared. So, I want to build on this. So, those of you who are a part of our XCHANGE Community of coaches and facilitators, you’re well aware of one of our foundational principles when it comes to leading a group to tap into their collective genius, their collective hearts and minds. And you know what I’m about to say and this is maybe one of the most important learnings for me when it comes to leading a live event. But let me say something. It doesn’t matter if you lead a live event. It’s probably the most important learning for any of us who deal with human beings, and when you talk about how that feel of love, one of the things that in the XCHANGE world we talked about endlessly is that whenever a person walks into a room, there is one primary dominant, unconscious, sometimes it’s conscious, but it’s guaranteed to be unconscious or conscious. There’s a primary dominant question that we are all asking ourselves when we enter any room, right, whether it’s a dinner party or a 500-person, experiential event like Best Year Ever Blueprint and the one question that everybody’s asking is so simple. 


And the question is, “Can I be myself and still fit in with this group?” And somebody asked me yesterday, I was talking with Amy Port, her and her husband, Michael, lead the Heroic Public Speaking School. I don’t know if that’s the exact name but they’re an amazing couple, amazing teachers. And Amy was asking me about our work, and what I was most proud of. And what I’m most proud of about the Best Year Ever Blueprint, I was sharing this with her, is that we have created the conditions for that unconditional love to show up consistently, repeatedly, duplicative-ly. And there’s nothing I’m more proud of than the fact that we have figured out how to engineer that. And by the way, here’s a teaching on what we learned on how to do that. The way that we do that at the event, but every one of you could bring this principle into your next interaction 10 minutes after this live stream, the way that we’ve learned how to engineer the psychological safety, which is the ingredient that is necessary, right? So, the reason why people come into a learning environment so any of you who run workshops, retreats, seminars, conferences, mastermind groups or you lead a team or an organization, you have to understand that people come into what I call a learning environment, there’s two reasons they come into that learning environment. 


There’s two reasons you might think you’re going to come to Best Year Ever Blueprint. Number one is because you want to get information, right, what we’d call intellectual capital. Number two is you want to connect with other cool people, people like you, people you could relate with. We call that social capital. And so, how you’d probably agree that those are the two big reasons people come to these events. What we have learned is that we can’t deliver at the highest levels on those two forms of capital. And by the way, there’s a third, which is usually not why people show up, but it’s why they come back and I’ll tell you that one in a minute. But we’ve learned that before you can deliver on these primary reasons that people come into any learning environments, either intellectual capital, or social capital, you have to create the conditions for psychological safety. By the way, that phrase is not mine, Amy Edmondson at Harvard first wrote about it in 1999. Google really amplified the research when in 2012 they said what creates a high performing team or group? And they said, “More than anything else, it’s the existence of psychological safety.” 


And the way that we create psychological safety is we choreograph conversation so that there’s connection and inclusion. By the way, you can have one without the other. So, we know what we’re doing. It’s a long way of saying, we’ve learned how to repeatedly create the experience of unconditional love. It’s what I’m most proud of and it could make me happier, Hal, that when you reflect on your biggest takeaway, that’s the first thing that comes up. And I would hope that everybody listening to this, it doesn’t matter if you lead a live event. I hope you get that, that I hope what you get is that what our world is begging for is the experience of connection and inclusion. And you can measurably verifiably create this. For me, it’s my life’s work. It’s what we teach facilitators how to do in any environment, but anybody listening can go create this by asking yourselves how can I connect? And how can I maybe connect with those that my unconscious might stop me from connecting with, to be a little more inclusive in who I’m bringing into my conversations? That experience together we can all create more safety and now we can deliver on these forms of capital. And someone’s asking so I’ll tell you the third form of capital that we deliver at these live events. 


It’s rarely why people come initially but it’s often why they come back and it’s often why they are most glad that they came. And it’s what we call communal capital. And it’s the realization that I’m connected to something bigger than myself. It’s realizing that I’m in a room with hundreds of people who are connected to a shared transcendent purpose. Now, Tiffany doesn’t realize she just jumped on our live stream, and it doesn’t matter. You could stay here, Tiff. 


Tiffany: Hi. 


Hal Elrod: Buddy, my whole team is going to be joining.


Tiffany: In a few minutes. Hi, everybody. I’ll jump out. Hello.


Hal Elrod: Text, everybody, and let them know.


Tiffany: Yes. 


Hal Elrod: That’s funny. I need more than one Zoom meeting.


Jon Berghoff: That’s okay. So, that’s been a big learning from putting on these events. Hal is there another one you want to share? And I might have one more and then we’ll sign off here. Of course, if there’s any questions in the Facebook chat, we’re happy to answer them in real-time. Hal, anything else you want to share about what we’ve learned, putting on leading these events? Go ahead, buddy, please.


Hal Elrod: Well, I was going to share something on what you just said, which is just to talk about another way to create that unconditional love and your relationships to do it for the people closest to you by making them feel heard or allowing them to feel heard. I just came back from the Front Row Dad’s Retreat and one of the fellow dads, he said or he told the group, he said, “I figured it out. I figured it out. I figured out how to make my marriage work.” And we’re like, “What?” He’s like, “It’s one strategy.” He said, “Stop trying to fix your wife’s problems.” And he said, “Stop trying to fix their problems. If she asked you to fix the problem, that’s great.” He goes, “But that’s probably 5% to 10% of the time when she’s talking to you,” and I think this is true for a lot of us especially obviously the male-female dynamic, but for any of us, just allowing people to feel heard and understood. And I think that’s a part of that psychological safety. And if you’re doing an event, you can’t obviously let everyone’s share, but we do let people share and let them feel heard and create that environment within the room. 


So, I just want to say that if you are, again, if you’re not leading a group for the majority of you, bring this to your employees, have meetings where you allow them to share what’s on their mind without you jumping in and trying to correct things and fix things and be the solver, be the hero, just listen and empathize. Wow. How does that make? Ask questions. Don’t give answers. Don’t think of your answer. How does that make you feel? When that happens, what are you thinking? What are you feeling? What are you wanting to do? Is there anything I can do to help you? If you want to fix a problem, that’s the question that you ask. You don’t fix the problem. You don’t offer a solution. You say, “Is there anything that you’d like me to do to help?” And so, with your kids, with your spouse, with your employees, I’d encourage you really to bring that element of creating space for people to feel understood and to feel loved. And from that place, you’ll create more power and connection in your relationships than you’ve ever imagined possible. And so, Jon, what you said brought that up for me that that is part of a big part of what is done that leads to that environment at the Best Year Ever Event. What’s the next lesson you want to share, buddy? 


Jon Berghoff: Well, I’m glad you shared that because that’s the perfect segue to my last point, which is, so at the Best Year Ever so this is really interesting. It’s actually easy to overlook that we actually create an environment as you said at the end here where at the event, you actually are guided into a conversation with the person next to you 35 to 40 times over three days. Now, I’m an introvert. So, when I hear that, I freak out a little bit, but what’s interesting is when it’s guided, it actually doesn’t take all the energy that it would take if it’s unguided. So, we actually create an environment. It’s part of the last point I want to make about what we’ve learned about creating breakthroughs. And so, what’s great about this is this is what we do at Best Year Ever but you could take this idea literally right after this episode into wherever you go next. And the big lesson that we’ve learned and I think it’s one of the reasons why the Best Year Ever Event has gotten better and better is because we’ve gotten smarter about this as a community is that if we really want to create breakthroughs, it starts with, number one, we got to ask new questions. 


And the best way to think about the power of a question is to think about our questions are so powerful, that when we ask a new question even before the answer shows up, our future changes. And the easiest way to prove that is just through a simple metaphor, like I’m wearing contact lenses right now, if any of you are wearing glasses like you are, Hal, what’s really interesting is putting a lens in front of our eye is just like presenting ourselves with a new question or presenting somebody else with a question because as soon as I put that lens in front of my eye, I don’t really have a choice, but it’s going to change what I see, how I see it, how well I see it, what I don’t see, what I can’t see. By the way, another interesting point is that I can’t actually see the lens anymore. Oftentimes in life, our conversations and our thoughts are unconscious. We’re asking questions like, what’s wrong with me? What’s broken? What’s not working? How bad is this? How bad is this going to get? What are people going to think of me? These are all questions that are based in a place of deficit and fear and insecurity and there’s understandable reasons why we get caught into those cycles. 


But the Best Year Ever Event is all about coming to a place where with 450 peers who become coaches for each other, we present a series of questions and I’ll remind everybody what some of these foundational questions are. Of course, what we do every year as we find new ways of having people answer the questions with each other, which is where it’s fun to create variety and how we actually play with these questions, which is the second part of the equation. Hal, you said a minute ago we need to create space for people to be heard. What we do at BYEB is we present the questions, but then we choreograph conversations where everybody gets to move through powerful conversations around what we think are some of the best questions to ask if I want to have the best year of my life and become my best self. 


And so, just a quick reminder of a couple of these questions, we won’t go through all of them, but a good example of the kinds of questions that change our future, even before the answers show up are questions like, when have I’ve been at my best? What are my strengths? What are my superpowers? Because if I want to create a better future, it might be smart to figure out when have I been at my best, what is it that makes me truly different and unique, that I could leverage even more of. Because we’ve learned that if we leverage our strengths, we can actually create the future we want much faster and more efficiently and more reliably. Another example of a great question is actually what do I most want to have in my future? And there’s a lot of ways to ask that question. If I woke up years from now and looked around and every part of my life had become beyond what I ever could have imagined was possible, in my relationships, my faith, my family, my work, my physical well-being. What would I see? What would be happening? 


The kinds of questions that invite us to stand in the future and envision everything with no constraints, that’s an important discipline to build is not ask it one time, but to learn how to hold these questions open. And of course, the significant question is, why am I here? The age-old, what is my purpose? And we actually approach that question quite differently at BYEB than the way most people talk about purpose. I don’t think purpose is something you find under a rock or under your chair when you sit down at BYEB. I think our purpose is something that we design, we architect, we craft. We have unconditional freedom to choose how we answer that question. And so, at BYEB we give people a very unique way of connecting to how do I create meaning, fulfillment, purpose in my life, no matter what my conditions are, so that that purpose can drive me, can give me a sense of resilience, can connect me to something that even while things are changing and uncertain, I can be connected to this deeper sense of purpose. These are just a few of the types of questions that we bring to you at BYEB that we would encourage you all to consider asking at any point at any time. So, Hal, I’ll leave it at that. 


Hal Elrod: Awesome, brother. That was valuable. I couldn’t help but smile a few times just those questions, thinking about my future and what I want it to look like, that always that, A, it feels good in the moment but, B, it’s the first step in making that future a reality. I want to add one more question, but first, I realized that if anybody’s listening and they had to go, we didn’t talk about how you could get tickets for Best Year Ever. And by the way, I do want to say Jon doesn’t know. The ticket piece is my side of it. So, Jon, I know we have at least 20 seats left. So, you said earlier you don’t know if we’re oversold or undersold. That’s been through our conversations, but I know we have some space. You can go to BestYearEverLive.com to get all the details and grab your spot. And I wanted to kind of bring this with one more question to bring this episode to a close although you’ll probably want to speak on my question, so we’ll see. We’ll just keep it going. 


But here’s the question. You know, I thought about today’s episode and what this was really about was from a personal level, me and Jon, we realized something through listening to our intuition and it was that we needed to stop doing this event and to focus on some other areas for me, my health, for Jon, his XCHANGE Community, and we realized that really I’ve had that whisper in my head for a long, long, long, long time, along with a lot of others. My intuition has been telling me it’s been trying to guide me and I’ve been fighting against it and I haven’t listened. And so, what I would encourage you to ask yourself is what have you realized through your intention, or I’m sorry, your intuition, whatever you realize through your intuition, a change that you might need to make but you’ve not yet decided to make that a priority. 


And so, I would encourage you to take what you learn today, what came up for you, what emerged for you, and I would encourage you to really get into that space of silence. Be quiet and ask yourself, what needs to die in order for something new to emerge, what needs to change in order for me to experience more of who I am and give more of who I am to my family, to the world? And then I encourage you to start small, start listening to your intuition and making decisions that are in alignment with your values, your highest values, who you aspire to be, the life you aspire to live, and who you want to be in your world. I encourage you to ask that question. What have you realized, but not yet decided on? And start making some decisions and putting your intuition into practice.


Jon Berghoff: Sounds like the kind of question that we might have 450 people explore in San Diego in five weeks.


Hal Elrod: Yeah, brother. I’m looking forward to it. It’s going to be a beautiful, magical, unforgettable experience. I hope you can join us. We’ll see you there.


Jon Berghoff: Peace out. 



Best Year Ever [Coaching] Online Program

This program gives you 12 months of our best coaching condensed into 12 weeks. Topics include the "Best Year Ever Blueprint", "Emotional Intelligence", "Next Generation Goal Setting", "Winning the Game of Wealth", and many more. You can get all of the details and (for a limited time) get a $1 (14-day) trial.


Best Year Ever [Blueprint] LIVE Experience

Did you know that once a year, 400+ members of The Miracle Morning Community come together in San Diego at our annual live event? It's incredible! If you haven't yet, I invite you to check out this short (but inspiring) video at BestYearEverLive.com, and see if the dates work for you to join us for what is sure to be another unforgettable experience!