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Life’s Tough, YOU Can Be TOUGHER!
26 minutes | Mar 16, 2022
Chinwe Esimai: Immigrant Women Inspire Brilliance Beyond Borders
In this episode host Dustin Plantholt speaks to Chinwe Esimai about her new book, Brilliance Beyond Borders: Remarkable Women Leaders Share the Power of Immigrace (a word she coined to represent an immigrant’s expression of her highest purpose and potential). Much like the women she profiles, Chinwe too is a trailblazer in her field who immigrated to the U.S. from Nigeria as a teenager. Growing up outside of the culture allows immigrants to bring a fresh perspective to whatever they do. Talk around the dinner table in Nigeria was centered on world events and she began to ponder and discuss how to make the world a better place. Her journey to become the managing director and chief anti-bribery officer at Citigroup, Inc., the first person to hold this title in the bank’s history, is an inspiring one to say the least. One strategy Chinwe uses to excel in her own life is to not focus on the borders, any potential barrier to moving forward. Although immigrants' cross physical borders, there are other borders that can be impediments to success, including the ones we impose on ourselves. By shining a light on immigrant women who have honed the traits that shaped their success, she hopes to spread the message that we all possess a unique genius and can create incredible legacies. Prior to joining Citigroup Chinwe spent five years at Goldman Sachs in various regulatory risk-management roles and served as a law professor at the University of St. Thomas School of Law. She was fortunate to have mentors who helped to build her confidence so that when the time came, she could step into a new role that, in many ways, was meant for her, even though she was taking a risk. “Readiness doesn’t mean you have all the answers. There will still be challenges when you step into it.” What does it take, specifically for immigrant women, to go from surviving to thriving? Oddly, failure is an essential ingredient to their success. Many immigrant women have faced trauma, but the ones who move forward seem to use any rejection they face as a call to action. Other ingredients include… (1) The ability to go within and be thoughtful about what you are uniquely suited to do. What frustrates you? Where are you passionately curious? Begin with reflection and determine to honor your unique talents and gifts. (2) Commitment to innovate over time. Learn to pivot and seize opportunities that come your way. (3) Take ownership of your decisions. Some people want mentors to feed them answers. Keep in mind a mentor doesn’t have to be someone like you—have the same gender or lifestyle. “The journey of life is about growth. It’s about ongoing examination, reexamination…honoring and finding the time and space to listen to that inner voice,” adds Chinwe. Her mission in writing the book is to democratize genius because we are all geniuses. Each section of the book concludes with a step-by-step guide to help readers achieve to their own extraordinary results, as well as an Immigrace Journal, a guide on how to serve the world and build a remarkable legacy. Brilliance Beyond Borders by Chinwe Esimia is now available wherever books are sold. Connect with Chinwe on social media on LinkedIn | Instagram | Facebook | Twitter To discover more from Life’s Tough Media’s expansive collection of inspiring podcasts and services, follow our social media @LifesToughMedia and visit www.lifestough.com.
18 minutes | Mar 9, 2022
Life’s Tough—Denise Ilitch is TOUGHER, Carrying on a Family Legacy of Hard Work and Listening
In this episode of “Life’s Tough—YOU Can Be TOUGHER!” host Dustin Plantholt talks to Denise Ilitch, an owner of Ilitch Family Companies and President of Ilitch Enterprises, an empire begun by her parents when they opened their first restaurant in 1959— Little Ceasar’s Pizza Treat in Garden City, Detroit. The oldest of seven children, Denise learned early to serve and to speak up. With humble beginnings she saw her parents build success from the ground up. Neither of her parents went to college or had formal business training. She says they were “incredibly bright and gifted all on their own.” In addition to be being signed by the Detroit Tigers, her father sold pots and pans door-to-door to make ends meet in the early days. He claimed this was how he learned about marketing, by listening to people decide how to spend their money. His love of Italian food led him to try different restaurants when he was traveling with the farm team, all of which led him to start his own. Much of what Denise learned about success she attributes to spending time with her father and she eagerly sought out opportunities to be by his side. Through his mentorship she was able to apply what she learned to her own life. Her first principle of leadership? Do the work. Recovery and moving forward post-pandemic will require adaptability, but work ethic is important. Now she wants to help others to use the same lessons. She says she still aims to make her dad proud, carrying on his legacy of treating everyone equally, learning from others and doing good. She stared her own podcast, The Denise Ilitch Show, to pay it forward. She’s observed that all successful people have courage, confidence and a ‘can do’ attitude and her guests reflect those qualities. “The more you invest in others the more you’ll get back.” Listen to the Denise Ilitch Show wherever you get podcasts. If you have a great story to share on the podcast, she’d love to hear from you @thedeniseilitchshow. To discover more from Life’s Tough Media’s expansive collection of inspiring podcasts and services, follow our social media @LifesToughMedia and visit www.lifestough.com.
18 minutes | Mar 2, 2022
Life’s Tough— Erik Weir is TOUGHER, discussing financial strategies that can transform your life
In this episode of “Life’s Tough—YOU Can Be TOUGHER!” host Dustin Plantholt talks to Erik Weir, one of the most sought-after wealth advisors in the Unites States, whose clients range from celebrity recording artists and professional sports icons to those on the Forbes World’s Billionaires list. Erik shares with listeners his story, his philosophy and wisdom for achieving goals despite obstacles, something he knows all about. When he was just five years old, Erik was in a traumatic automobile accident. Police rushed to the scene and told him to stay in the car, although he was terribly frightened that he wasn’t safe there. That same evening, he started to stutter, something he’d never done before. It was debilitating and he suffered a lot of bullying at school because of it. A therapist gave him a choice: become a recluse and a failure or push through the difficulty to succeed and learn a skill you can use forever. He chose the latter, leaning into his disability and using it as an opportunity, a process he’s repeated in many areas of his life since. His idea for the title of his new book, “Who’s Eating Your Pie?” came from a lesson he was trying to teach his son. Not quite grasping what his dad was saying about taxation, Erik reached over and took a big bite out of his son’s dessert, warm apple pie with ice cream. He explained to his son, that’s what it means when others take a piece of your “pie,” a metaphor for all our finite resources. Needless to say, his son got it! Erik shares with listeners his Five F’s that shape his daily priorities: Faith, Family, Fitness, Finances and Friends. Balance is key, recognizing that at different times in our lives we may put more emphasis on building one area over another. And he shares details on the four things he thinks about every day: Vision, Mission, Legacy, Impact. “No one will ever hold you back more or keep you down more than your limiting thoughts or your judgement on yourself.” Forgiving yourself and others, is also a key. Harboring anger or resentment only bring us pain and keeps us from moving forward. Erik encourages everyone to give grace to others. Turns out having a rich and rewarding life has little to do with money. To learn more about Erik and to preorder his book, “Who’s Eating Your Pie? Essential Financial Advice That Will Transform Your Life” visit www.erikweir.com. The book will be available wherever books are sold starting March 22. To discover more from Life’s Tough Media’s expansive collection of inspiring podcasts and services, follow our social media @LifesToughMedia and visit www.lifestough.com.
19 minutes | Sep 22, 2021
Cheryl Miller, Co-Author of “Business Doing Good”
Dustin Plantholt’s Life’s Tough: YOU can be TOUGHER! podcast this week features Cheryl Miller, Owner of Quantum Consulting and Training. During her interview with Dustin, Cheryl Miller tells of her past personal challenges as a homeless single mom with two kids born into the welfare system. With the help of others along the way, Miller managed to overcome many uphill battles and obstacles—eventually graduating with a Bachelor's and a graduate degree. Miller had become a teacher and then worked for over 18 years in the nonprofit sector before opening up her own business, Quantum Consulting and Training. Through her company she helped other women who were former addicts or victims of domestic violence, experienced poverty or homelessness, or were incarcerated or had exited from the sex industry, to find meaningful careers to transition back into the normal paths of society. Miller also co-authored with Shannon Deer the recently published book, Business Doing Good: Engaging Women and Elevating Communities. Through her book, Miller hopes other businesses will follow suit and step up to their plate and hire these special groups of women, who make up a large percentage of the nontraditional workforce. "When you give people an opportunity, especially those who are ready to change, ready to do something different, you are not only impacting that person's life but also impacting generations to come.” Says Miller. Join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: YOU Can Be TOUGHER! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
15 minutes | Sep 15, 2021
Coach Rob Mendez Writes a Book, "Who Says I Can't?"
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough, YOU Can Be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Coach Rob Mendez, head coach of the Prospect High School (CA) junior varsity football team. During his recent interview with Dustin, Coach Mendez tells of his lifelong passion of football and coaching the sport—even though he has no limbs at all. Born without arms or legs due to tetra-amelia syndrome—a rare congenital disorder that prevents the formation of limbs during embryonic development—Rob Mendez was never able to play football, but that didn't stop him from pursuing his passion for the game as a coach. Yet he was always inspired and encouraged by his father Robert Mendez Sr. to not see himself as "special" but as "unique," and "never to focus on what I couldn’t do but rather on what I could do." "I am grateful for the work I get to do every day. Coaching my team fills me up in a way unlike anything else. The purpose and fulfillment we get from our jobs positively impacts our lives and our communities." Says Coach Mandez. Coach Mendez is also the author of his recently published book, Who Says I Can't? The Astonishing Story of A Fearless Life. Besides coaching football, Mendez is also a busy and accomplished motivational speaker, and has been the subject of dozens of profiles in national media, as well as the ESPN documentary short feature, "Who Says I Can’t? " He will also be partnering with Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin & Metro Chicago in support of their mission to help individuals with disadvantages and different abilities overcome obstacles, find jobs, and achieve their goals To learn more about Coach Rob Mandez, follow him on social media @coachrobmandez and listen to the full episode on the “Life’s Tough” podcast network. Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
30 minutes | Sep 8, 2021
Special Interview with Queen Diambi of the Democratic Republic of Congo
In this episode of Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!”, host Dustin Plantholt interviews Her Royal Highness Queen Diambi Kabatusuila Tshiyoyo Muata of the Democratic Republic of Congo. In this episode, Queen Diambi, whose name means “the bearer of good news,” shines her best light and shares important truths about the African continent. This engaging interview begins with the story behind Her Royal Highness Queen Diambi’s full name. Then, we learn more about the beauty and diverse history that Africa embodies—along with a section debunking misconceptions about Africa. In so doing, Queen Diambi delves into the “Two Africas.” There is the 1885 Berlin Conference vision of Africa in which Europeans sought to cut Africa into pieces for exploitative means. The Africa that Queen Diambi emphasizes is the Africa of the People—the Africa that is over 200,000 years old. From this perspective, Queen Diambi talks about how Africa is where the true history and true accomplishments of civilization took place and continues to take place. In other words, Africa is the birthplace and foundation of civilization—and far more than the mere categorization of “cradle.” As Queen Diambi says, “We only left Africa 70,000 years ago. If humanity is 100, you leave Africa when you are 60…You didn’t leave a cradle.” Queen Diambi also reframes the way Africa is portrayed by using an extended metaphor of Africa as our wise mother who we ought to realize our interconnected relationship with and show her the utmost respect for raising and supporting us. Additionally, when you think about major concepts in mathematics, sciences, coding systems, philosophy, and architectural feats—all of this originated in Africa, too. So why is this history not taught in western schooling? As Queen Diambi reflects, it is about the so-called winners of history who “creat[e] an artificial narrative to justify why they treat Africa the way they do.” Throughout the episode, we learn about the ways “Africa is our home, and that history belongs to our community” because African history is human history. And in the wise words of Queen Diambi, “We are all human. Our wealth reside[s] in our diversity because the more diverse we are, the more creative we can be when we have to find solutions. However, our strength lies in our unity. And unity doesn’t mean unicity--unity means you are different, and I love it, because your difference will complete me. Your difference will supplement me—complement me. So, when we change that and we give everyone the opportunity to shine their best light, then how lit will we be together.” If you are someone who enjoys learning accurate history of the world, understanding the reality behind common misconceptions, as well as discussions about how to create healing between countries and bridge the gap between communities—tune into the “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast featuring highly esteemed guest, Her Royal Highness Queen Diambi Kabatusuila Tshiyoyo Muata of the Democratic Republic of Congo. For more information, visit www.lifestough.com and follow our social media @LifesToughMedia.
22 minutes | Jul 21, 2021
Life’s Tough – but David Vaskevitch is TOUGHER: Self-Taught Computer Programmer Building Microsoft from the Ground Up with Bill Gates
The latest podcast episode of “Life’s Tough—YOU Can Be TOUGHER!” is about David Vaskevitch, former CTO (Chief Technical Officer) for Microsoft and founder of Mylio, a product that digitizes and organizes a lifetime of memories. From a childhood with his head in the books to a young adulthood in the 1960s surrounded by the latest computer technology, David taught himself how to program and was hired as “Employee 901” at Microsoft under Bill Gates’ advisement. In this episode, David shares his life experience and details how his innovative spirit propelled him further in his career. If you’re wondering how to start a company, how to create to a product you are proud of, and/or how to brainstorm new ideas, tune into this episode of “Life’s Tough: YOU can be TOUGHER!” featuring business visionary, entrepreneur, and innovator David Vaskevitch. To learn more about David Vaskevitch and his company Mylio, check out www.mylio.com. To discover more from Life’s Tough Media’s expansive collection of podcasts and services, follow our social media @LifesToughMedia and visit www.lifestough.com
24 minutes | Jul 14, 2021
Life's Tough, but Sean Callagy is Tougher, successful attorney, entrepreneur, speaker, business coach and the owner and President of Callagy Law.
The latest episode on the “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast, hosted by Dustin Plantholt, features guest Sean Callagy with a priceless perspective to all listeners. Sean is the business owner and operator of Callagy Law, founder of the UNBLINDED movement and UNBLINDED Results Formula, ambassador for the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB), as well as an internationally recognized public speaker and business coach. Growing up with grandparents, aunts, and high school coaches who are rich in love, values, and mentorship, Sean delves into how he was blessed by the successful people around him. Modeling their behaviors from a young age, he developed the life skills necessary to succeed the most challenging of circumstances. During his undergraduate college career at Columbia University, Sean began to feel the impact of his degenerative genetic eye disease. Pivoting from his dream to go pro in baseball, he decided to apply to law school for financial stability and self-sufficiency as he would soon become fully blind. However, after working at a top firm post-law school, he realized that pursuing law was no longer his dream. Dissatisfied with his position, he looked around at the office and realized that most people complained about the work while only a small few were happy and empowered leaders. Wanting to feel a similar sense of agency and growth, Sean educated himself about business and gained mentor figures in his life—including Tony Robbins and Jay Abraham. What got Sean out of this undesirable cycle? Actively releasing his fears of rejection and failure. Prioritizing what matters. Integrity. Grit. Devotion to life-long learning. Sean attributes a major part of the growth in his businesses to reading books such as How to Make a Fortune from Public Speaking by Dr. Robert Anthony and Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins. From thereon out, Sean forged a new path for himself as the founder of Callagy Law, a highly successful law firm, and UNBLINDED, a personal and professional development company. Once he embraced the boundless possibility his future held, Sean “started generating clients and went from $100,000 in debt to a 40-person law firm in 2 years.” He also started asking challenging questions about how to grow and build structures using his gifts and talents to become a business owner who focuses on what fuels him. From sales meetings and what Sean coined as “ecosystem merging” through communication with niche client ecosystems, he prioritizes his life with integrity and passion. “I love growth. I love challenge.” Sean Callagy affirms, and through creating new opportunities and sharing his story, he encourages all of you to do the same. Because while Life’s Tough, YOU can be TOUGHER! Do you want to access Sean’s formula to becoming more free, happy, empowered, and in leadership? Do you want to learn how your weaknesses can be your greatest strengths and ignite a “why” that propels you? Have you been letting fear of rejection and failure prevent you from taking risks and truly living your life? By listening to Sean Callagy’s journey and the steps he took to get to where he is today, you will not only witness a powerful and moving episode, but a motivational talk that transforms the status quo. To delve more into Sean Callagy and his blockbuster-worthy story, check out www.unblindedmastery.com and his social media @SeanRCallagy. For more information about Life’s Tough media and our host, Dustin Plantholt, visit our page at www.lifestough.com and platforms via @LifesToughMedia on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.
21 minutes | Jun 23, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Pastor Neil Tomba is TOUGHER: Finding Jesus on The Listening Road
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Pastor Neil Tomba, Senior Pastor of Northwest Bible Church of Dallas, Texas, who cycled nearly 3,000 miles across the country from California to Maryland on his quest to reach out and listen to people and sharing the Jesus he loved through conversations with others. During his recent interview with Dustin, Pastor Tomba shared how he had "met 150-250 people" in total—and had "116 recorded conversations" about faith and Jesus in 30 days—with people from all walks of life. Some of these total strangers were very open—and others very skeptic about this cycling preacher—shared with Tomba "their life experiences, griefs and struggles, while others wanted to give back" to their communities. Some even openly discussed with him about faith, their experiences with the church, and matters of the soul. Tomba also learned how "true connection is possible when we truly listen to others, instead of rushing to judgment or trying to provide answers to their questions. This provided him a chance to learn of these people' search for and substance by listening to their stories without judgment, and to lead conversation out of curiosity and love,” adds Tomba. Pastor Tomba's incredible and physically stressful month-long journey was captured by a professional film team led by Jonathon Link and became a documentary series in 2020. This remarkable story and what he learned about the power of listening was also documented in his newly published book earlier this month: The Listening Road: One Man's Ride Across America to Start Conversations About God. To learn more about Pastor Neil Tomba, visit www.neiltomba.com, and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be TOUGHER! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
29 minutes | Jun 16, 2021
Life's Tough, Dr. Lawrence Krauss is TOUGHER, an American-Canadian theoretical physicist and current President of The Origins Project Foundation.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Dr. Lawrence Krauss, an American-Canadian theoretical physicist and cosmologist who was a former professor at Arizona State University (ASU). Dr. Krauss also founded ASU's Origins Project, now called ASU Interplanetary Initiative, to investigate fundamental questions about the universe and served as the project's director. During his recent interview with Dustin, Dr. Krauss explored the fundamental questions about the universe and its origins—contrary to the opinions from those with faith—about life and its purposes. Dr. Krauss's childhood fascination about science motivated his lifelong passion to search for the ultimate answers once he reached adulthood. "Do what you enjoy...If you don't enjoy it, you won't do a good job; if you don't do a good job, you won't find the answers." He also discussed why it's important to find out about things: ask questions and you will learn. "Energy is the capability of doing work...when one has fear, fear will prevent one from learning and finding out about the truth". Dr. Krauss is an advocate for public understanding of science, public policy based on sound empirical data, scientific skepticism, and science education. He currently serves as President of The Origins Project Foundation and as host of The Origins Podcast with Lawrence Krauss. To learn more about Dr. Lawrence Krauss, visit www.originsprojectfoundation.org and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be TOUGHER! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
11 minutes | May 19, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Steven Strombeck is TOUGHER, Changing the World: "One Knob at a Time"
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Steven Strombeck, Founder and CEO of SafeHandles, who developed a uniquely superior product that not only keeps commonly touched surfaces clean but germs-free 24/7 for at least six months. During his recent interview with Dustin, Steven Strombeck tells of how his personal encounter with a random individual's hygienic behavior spearheaded his determination to partner with his creative team to create a product that "has been tested to not only eliminate germs but also solve problems for a long time." His mission? To keep our families safe. Three things in life matter more than ever before—health, purpose and the people we love. And SafeHandles' unique products can continuously reduce the growth of certain microbes to ensure the product is clean and durable, thus killing germs on the common surfaces people touch 24/7 so they don't get sick from that. A problem-solver with a strong passion for helping people, Steve is also the current Chairman of the Board for Redwood Teen Challenge and is a founding director of Redwood Capital Bank. In addition to his business and charitable pursuits, Steven partners with multiple non-profits around the world and spearheaded two thriving companies, Strombeck Properties and Strombeck Construction. To learn more about Steven Strombeck, visit www.safehandles.com, and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be TOUGHER! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
16 minutes | May 12, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Dr. Don Wood is TOUGHER, telling you: "Nothing is wrong with you or your mind"
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Don Wood, Founder of Inspired Performance Institute and CEO of Team Energy Inc., developed the TIPP method after spending years researching how atmospheric conditions affect minds and impact lives. Dr. Wood designed this cutting-edge neuroscience approach to "remove the stigma of trauma." When it eliminates the effects of disturbing or traumatic events in a person’s life, their performance improves both personally and professionally. During his recent interview with Dustin, Dr. Wood shares how things at home hit him on a personal note. “Both my wife and daughter experienced childhood trauma and I saw how it affected their life, including their health. They both had developed autoimmune disorders.” In his search for answers for them, Dr. Wood made the connection between trauma and their health issues. In addition, he recognized the daily stress they lived with and the only solutions provided came from medications. His experience with his family provided the determination required to develop a cutting-edge neuroscience approach. Dr. Woods is an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, and an avid author on neuroscience and a frequent podcast guest favorite. He has appeared on over 100 podcasts and many times has been the top 20% listened to show. To learn more about Don Wood visit drwoodphd.com, and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be TOUGHER! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
24 minutes | May 5, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Dr. Christina Rahm is TOUGHER, surviving cancer and empowering others to take control of their own health and wellness.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Dr. Christina Rahm, artistic scientist, researcher & worldwide consultant in various areas of holistic health and wellness. During her recent interview with Dustin, Dr. Christina Rahm shares how she first got into healthcare and wellness. After battling Lyme disease in her twenties, and surviving multiple cancers in her thirties, Dr. Rahm made a vow to help people find their own paths of empowerment, by ridding them of the negative environmental and personal forces that prevent them from living a healthy and meaningful life. She is currently writing a book - Cure The Causes, that combines her own personal experiences and health challenges with extensive scientific education, bringing us a book to enable happier, healthier lives! Cure The Causes weaves us through why illness can happen to all of us, and how healing can happen by focusing on the cause instead of the symptoms. Dr. Rahm offers a thorough insight into how everything is connected, affecting our health and well-being. “Don’t let a doctor or anyone else tell you what to do with your body! You’re in charge of your body, so own it!” says Dr. Rahm. Dr. Rahm has an M.S. in Rehab Counseling, PhDs in Education Counseling Psychology with emphasis in NeuroPsych and Strategic Science. She has done postdoc work at Harvard and has taught CME courses for numerous Universities including Johns Hopkins University. She has also spoken and lectured at environmental, health and medical conferences in 78 countries and all fifty U.S. states. To learn more about Dr. Christina Rahm and her upcoming book, Cure the Causes, visit https://drchristinarahm.com/, and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be TOUGHER! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
27 minutes | Apr 28, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Greg Laurie is TOUGHER, pastoring one of the largest Churches in America and offering spiritual answers to life’s toughest questions.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Greg Laurie, American author, Evangelist and Senior Pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship, staying active in remote campuses across California and Hawaii. In a recent conversation with Dustin, Pastor Greg Laurie says that taking time to connect with others has always been a driving force in his life. He has been an evangelist and pastor for 40 years, authored 70 books, including The Upside Down Church, raised 2 children and now he and Cathe, his wife, enjoy life with their 5 grandchildren. He encourages listeners not to put him or any other pastor or leader up on a pedestal, but to remember that we’re all just human. He says, “At the end of the day, we all put our pants on one leg at a time and we all need Jesus just like everyone else.” Growing up, it was Greg’s dream to become a professional cartoonist, but God had a different plan for his life, and Greg says he’s glad! At a very early age, Greg found himself asking the big questions: What is the meaning of life? Why am I here? What will happen after I die? And at the age of 19, under the supervision of his Pastor, he was given the opportunity to lead a Bible Study and the church that formed from this Bible Study group has grown to become one of the largest churches in the United States - Harvest Christian Fellowship. To learn more about Pastor Greg Laurie visit https://harvest.org/and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be Tougher! right here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
27 minutes | Apr 21, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Josh Nielsen is TOUGHER, founding a high-quality, web-based solution for podcasters all around the world.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Josh Nielsen, founder of Zencaster — a web-based tool that helps podcasters easily record their guests, getting the same high-quality audio as in studio. In a recent interview with Dustin, Josh Nielson explains how it all started for him, chasing his story back to his very first job and detailing the beginnings of his groundbreaking podcasting platform. Recognizing that podcasters faced significant challenges recording their shows and collecting the audio from remote guests, Josh decided to employ some of the skills he’d been learning on previous projects to build something that would solve this problem. No longer do podcast hosts have to cross their fingers, hoping the internet connection doesn't fail them! Josh designed Zencastr with first class options and an arsenal of professional tools, allowing podcast producers to quickly and painlessly record their guests. Why Podcasting? Josh says that podcasting is a great way to connect with people who might otherwise be difficult to get 10 minutes with. By providing value to an entire audience though a podcast interview, everyone wins. “It’s a lot easier to say - ‘come be on my podcast my audience will really benefit from you’ than saying - ‘can I please have some of your time’. And the audience just love to be a fly on the wall for those conversations as well.” Josh says. Josh dropped out of college with one semester left, took a job at a startup and learned more working there for 3 months than he did in his entire University program. He quickly caught the entrepreneur bug and moved to Boulder, CO spending a summer working as a developer for Techstars. To learn more about Josh Nielsen and Zencastr visit www.zencastr.com and join us for new episodes of Life’s Tough: You Can Be Tougher! here on the “Life’s Tough” channel! Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
25 minutes | Apr 14, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Dr. Gary Onik is TOUGHER, pioneering revolutionary cancer treatments and never giving up on any patient.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Dr. Gary Onik, a visionary medical Doctor and adjunct Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, working closely with his colleagues to develop the next generation of cancer fighting technologies. In a recent interview, Dustin asks Dr. Gary Onik to share about what has inspired him to explore these groundbreaking medical treatments and the lessons he’s learned from the ups and downs of his career. Dr. Onik admits that he doesn’t need the recognition from his peers or the public, saying, “That has helped me push the envelope and go against the standards.” Dr. Onik’s is turning the world of what is considered untreatable cancers upside down with his medical cancer treatments. Driven by compassion towards his patients, Dr. Onik says, “My criteria for accepting a patient is whether I believe they can walk out of the hospital cancer-free.” Dr. Onik was born in Brooklyn, New York, the son of an accountant and homemaker. By age five his family had moved to Coney Island, and he already knew he wanted to be a doctor. One of the first science books Gary ever read was a picture book about Louis Pasteur. He was intrigued. But his dreams of becoming a doctor disappeared when, at eight years old, his father died unexpectedly, and he saw his mother struggle to make ends meet. It took a high school mentor and Harvard professors to inspire Gary to go on to Medical school. Gary graduated New York Medical College in Manhattan at the top of his class and has gone on to pioneer some of the most astounding medical breakthroughs in history. To learn more about Dr. Onik and his work visit www.garyonik.com. Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story, saying, Dustin says “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!” Disclaimer: Dr. Onik is an adjunct Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University and the chief medical officer of a biotechnology company that is conducting clinical trials and developing new cancer technologies. He also has a private medical practice treating cancer patients. He may have a financial interest in some of the topics he will be discussing
24 minutes | Apr 7, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Rebeccah Silence is TOUGHER, certified world-class Emotional Healing Coach helping and healing hundreds of families and individuals through life-changing breakthroughs!
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Rebeccah Silence, known for bringing her clients "back to life”, owner of Inspired Results, radio personality, highly sought-after keynote speaker and corporate trainer, specializing in "Emotional Release" coaching for individuals, families, life purpose, and healing. In her conversation with Dustin, Rebeccah walks us through her 5 steps for healing. She has an online program called, Healing Is Possible, and during the 5-week course, Rebeccah has helped countless people overcome a painful past and break through the patterns than keep you stuck. “It’s simple, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy,” says Rebeccah. After years studying, processing & integrating, Rebeccah has built a roadmap to freeing yourself from emotional pain. Courage, Wellness, Inspiration, Faith and Power are the 5 steps she believes are critical for healing. “If you feel stuck or held hostage by your emotional pain,” Rebeccah coaches, “if it’s keeping you from truly shining your light and becoming the person you're destined to be, this course might be right for you!” Rebeccah put the pieces of her life back together after leaving an abusive marriage and again when she survived cancer, getting her initial diagnosis while she was pregnant with her youngest daughter. She is committed to helping others heal their childhood traumas and her work includes support for sexual, physical and self-harm disorders. Rebeccah has spent the past 13 years helping her clients heal through their emotional pain stemming from dark & unimaginable trauma. She believes that we are all born exactly who we are supposed to be and as life happens to us, we drift, hide, numb and lose ourselves in our journey to adulthood. Through her work, she empowers others to choose their best self and claim the power to be who they were created to be. Dustin Plantholt is founder and CEO of Life’s Tough. Surviving a traumatic childhood and now raising a family of his own, he is dedicated to helping others find their voice through sharing their story. Dustin says, “Together, we are sparking a movement and changing the world, one heart at a time. It’s life … life is tough … but YOU can be TOUGHER!”
24 minutes | Mar 17, 2021
Life’s Tough — but Michael Dowling is TOUGHER, from Irish immigrant to President & CEO of Northwell Health—the largest Healthcare Provider in New York State—and true visionary leader of our time.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Michael Dowling, President & CEO of Northwell Health (the largest healthcare provider and private employer in New York State), chair of the Healthcare Institute, and current member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Sciences. Born and raised in Knockaderry, County Limerick, in Ireland’s southwestern region, Michael’s family lived on a small piece of property in an impoverished area. His home had mud walls, a thatch roof, three small rooms, and a mud floor. There was no electricity, no running water, no bathrooms, and no heat, only a big open fireplace where his mother did all the cooking. Michael was the oldest of five children and had to help support his family from an early age, but this only inspired him to push further in pursuit of his dreams. “No” was never an option for Michael as he realized early on, that with dogged resolve, one stands a good chance of achieving their goals and dreams. Ireland in the 50’s and 60’s was a two-class system, and nobody ever thought that people without money would ever go to college. Even though Michael’s mother was deaf, she was an avid reader and passed that “love of reading” onto Michael. As a child, Michael remembers reading everything he could get his hands. In the end Michael did well enough in high school to make the cut and get accepted into college. “Never let your circumstances interfere with your potential,” his mother would say, always encouraging her children. Michael became the first person in his family to attend college, graduating UCC (University College, Cork) while working odd jobs to pay his tuition. He went on to receive his masters from Fordham University, while also holding honorary doctorates from Queen's University Belfast, University College Dublin, Hofstra University, Dowling College and Fordham University. He began his career at Fordham University as a professor and the assistant dean at the Graduate School of Social Services. He went on to serve under Governor Mario Cuomo for seven years, as state director of Health, Education and Human Services, as well as Deputy Secretary. He also served as commissioner of the New York State Department of Social Services. Before joining Northwell Health in 1995, Michael was a senior vice president at Empire Blue Cross/Blue Shield. At Northwell Health he was the health system’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, before becoming president and CEO in 2002. Northwell Health is the largest healthcare provider in New York State, caring for more than two million people annually through a vast network of more than 830 outpatient facilities, including 220 primary care practices, 52 urgent care centers, home care, rehabilitation and end-of-life programs, and 23 hospitals. As president and CEO of Northwell Health, Michael leads a clinical, academic and research enterprise with a workforce of more than 75,000 and annual revenue of $14 billion. “Innovation needs to be a core competency for any organization and part of its ongoing DNA.” says Michael. “It’s about people not being slaves to tradition, challenging the status quo and pursuing new, creative ways of doing our jobs and delivering care.” As one of health care’s most influential voices, Michael tackles societal issues such as gun violence and immigration that many health system CEOs shy away from. He has also authored several books; his latest—Leading Through a Pandemic: The Inside Story of Humanity, Innovation, and Lessons Learned During the COVID-19 Crisis—highlights the passion and energy that drives Northwell to be on the leading edge of medical policy and innovation, documenting dramatic stories of what it was like on the front lines, battling the COVID 19 pandemic of early 2020. Today, Michael and his wife Kathy live on Long Island with their two children, Brian and Elizabeth. Join Dustin and Michael for a stimulating conversation and hear how Michael overcame adversity and achieved his dreams. As Michael says, “If you tell me I can’t do something, that’s when I become determined to get it done.”
33 minutes | Mar 11, 2021
Life’s Tough, but Rick Tirelli is TOUGHER, solving nearly 600 homicide cases as one of NYPD’s greatest detectives.
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast is honored to feature Rick Tirelli, retired NYPD homicide detective, Film Producer at Kauffman Films, and entertainment industry’s technical advisor for crime documentaries, films and TV shows—most notably for the legendary “NYPD Blue” television series. Rick Tirelli is best known for being the heart and soul behind the legendary series “NYPD Blue”—one of the most successful law enforcement TV series! Rick joined the NYPD on January 4, 1984 and worked in the 114 precinct’s (in Queens) anti-crime. In 1988 he was assigned to the Detective Bureau with the 105 Detective Squad. Rick is considered one of the greatest interrogators in the history of the NYPD and was nicknamed “Master of the Box”. He worked his way up to the Manhattan South Homicide Squad and the 26 years he served as a homicide detective, saw over 700 cases cross his desk and is proud to say “...solved 575 of them.” In 1996 Rick was elected the Queens Trustee for the union representing the Greatest Detectives in the world—The DEA (Detectives Endowment Association). Shortly thereafter he was elevated to DEA Secretary, where he served for 6 years, negotiating contracts, grievances, hearings, health benefits, annuities and all other union related matters. Remarkably, while investigating homicides, Rick also closely worked with the producers of the legendary series “NYPD Blue”, advising intimately with the casting, writing, development, post-production and locations—with his access to police departments throughout the country proving to be his strongest asset. He has also worked behind the scenes on “Big Apple” and the feature films “Pride & Glory” (advising Jon Voight, Ed Norton, and Colin Farrell) and “Exposed” (coaching Keanu Reeves in specific police lingo). Rick was Executive Producer of “Watching the Detectives” on A&E, and “The Perfect Murder” on ID. Rick first forged his friendship with Titus Welliver on “NYPD Blue” and later, on “Big Apple.” Rick wore many hats during “The Perfect Murder,” “Watching the Detectives,” “I Married a Mobster,” and while producing “Godfather and Sons” working with several actors to teach accurate terminology and sometimes even giving them a tour of the precinct. He also played the instrumental role of conducting interviews for the shows. “One of the things we always try to do is show that the cops are out there to do the right thing,” Tirelli says of projects like Ace, “...and that means, stories showing how the police and public work in tandem to solve crimes.” Rick retired from the NYPD on March 1, 2015 as a 1st Grade Detective to further his television producing partnership with Kevin Kaufman from Kaufman Films. “Kevin and I do everything together, pretty much from the beginning to the end,” Rick says. “We basically put our minds together … not only for the police stuff but for all of it.” Join Dustin and Rick for a deep dive into his 31-year career with the NYPD and learn some of the “behind the scenes” work that goes into making the greatest cop shows and films ever produced!
25 minutes | Mar 4, 2021
Life’s Tough – but Mallory Weggemann is TOUGHER, smashing limitations in and out of the pool!
Dustin Plantholt’s “Life’s Tough—YOU can be TOUGHER!” podcast this week features Mallory Weggemann, two-time American Paralympian swimmer who holds 15 world records and 34 American records, highly sought-after motivational speaker, and author of her memoir Limitless: The Power of Hope and Resilience to Overcome Circumstance. A competitive swimmer since she was seven, Weggemann was 18 and a former co-captain of her high-school swim team in Minneapolis when she received a third and final epidural injection to alleviate back pain in January 2008. The procedure went awry and left her paralyzed from the waist down. Several months later, after one of her sisters showed her a story in the local newspaper about the 2008 Paralympic swimming trials taking place at the University of Minnesota, Weggemann went to the meet to speak with the coaches. One of them offered to train her. In a Sports Illustrated article in 2016, Weggemann said: “When I got back into the pool, I started by racing nine-year-olds who were beating me. But I knew I was back to racing. With each passing practice, I got faster and each was a new step forward. Swimming signified fighting back.” Weggemann attained her first set of world records at the 2009 Speedo CAN-AM Para Swimming Championships, held in Edmonton, Alberta in Canada. And, in 2012, she was swimming for Team USA at the Paralympic Games in London, where she won two medal—a gold and a bronze. Following her Olympic experience, Weggemann became a motivational speaker at corporate gatherings and she also began training for the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Then, in 2014, she suffered an injury that resulted in lasting nerve damage to her left arm. She again fought back and ultimately earned a place on the U.S. team that went to Rio. Weggemann has kept her competitive swimming career going. She won two gold medals and one silver at the 2019 World Para Swimming Championships in London. Additionally, Weggemann continues to be a prominent public advocate for Americans with disabilities. Her book, Limitless: The Power of Hope and Resilience to Overcome Circumstance will be released early in March. Join Dustin and Mallory for a rousing conversation on how Mallory turned tragedy to triumph through resiliency and hope, and how she motivates others to do the same.
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