We had the good fortune of connecting with Talmadge Spicer and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Talmadge, how do you think about risk?
The ability to take a risk is the most important to me as an entrepreneur. When I started my first business, I had a mentor who would drill into my head “Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. From that, I learned that as long as I leaned into what felt uncomfortable, I would be perpetually progressing.
Risk plays such a major role in my life and career that I wrote a book about it. “Have The Guts To Follow Your Guts: Why Playing It Safe Is The Biggest Risk Of All” Is a 9 chapter compilation of some of the biggest lessons I’ve learned from jumping out of my comfort zone and taking on risk.
As I see it, being adverse to risk is the same thing as being adverse to learning and that is being adverse to growing. If you’re not growing you’re dying.
I embrace risk, but it’s a process, a practice. Building your risk tolerance takes tremendous inner work and patience but will be one of the most important muscles that anyone can develop.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I’m a mindset coach on a mission to inspire 1 million people to live a life by design instead of by default.
Most of what I post on Social Media pertains to the mindset shifts we need to make to level up energetically and financially.
But I’m really excited about my 1-1 coaching program designed specifically to empower black women to ditch self-doubt and live fully expressed in their divine feminine.
I never wanted to save the world I just wanted to do something that ensured I would never hear my grandmother cry again
I remember the conversation like it was yesterday. “I just don’t know what I am going to do, Tal!” Grannyma said to me, weeping. I couldn’t help but feel responsible.
You see, she had stuck out her neck for me to send me to college by co-signing on 6 figures of loans.
After leaving school, degreeless, we needed to figure out how to pay Sallie Mae and resolve the loans I took.
I had never felt more guilty and obligated to make something right in my entire life!
Sure, at 18 years old when we took the first loan I didn’t know the first thing about finance debt, interest, or anything beyond dealing in cash but this experience made it my life’s mission to become financially literate and later help others do the same.
When I left Fairleigh Dickinson University in 2014, I was tasked with the job of overcoming $150k in student loans to make my grandmother whole again. Without producing a degree, it was the LEAST I could do.
My options for doing this were limited when I learned I was too broke for Sallie Mae’s ‘Hardship Program’ which would grant me leniency and allow me to pay a small portion of my loan payments… $4,000 a month.
Living at my parents, working at the t-mobile kiosk in the mall wasn’t going to cut it.
Looking for answers, I turned to books.
The first one: Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Poor Dad
My mind was blown.
Up until that point, I had no clue how powerful seeing things from a new perspective and gaining a deeper understanding of something could be!
I was hooked.
For the first time in my life I had a seemingly unquenchable thirst for knowledge.
I went on to read all of the classic personal development books like Think and Grow Rich, How to Win Friends and Influence People, and The Alchemist just to name a few.
I had never learned or grown more in this short of a time period ever before. My life’s experiences quickly started to change as well as I learned more about what to look for to reach my $150k goal.
This heightened awareness led me to a mentorship with Shevroy Green, Mr. “Get Excited.” Shev Trained me to begin to leave my employee mindset behind. To take radical responsibility for every facet of my life and to “Get Excited” when circumstances weren’t ideal. With those two words, I learned to lean into what was uncomfortable instead of run away. By practicing, all of my challenges became opportunities and that’s something I will always be grateful for.
We used our sales organization as the training ground for the mental disciplines I didn’t know I needed to develop.
Eventually, I was put in a position to run my own market and manage up to 20 representatives in 3 locations out in Boise, Idaho.
Here, I took some of the most talented people I know who were struggling with self-doubt and were able to pull out the best parts of them, their strengths, and showed them to them so that they could perform at a higher level.
Nothing touched my heart more than seeing someone go from “Idk, you sure I can do that?” to “I did that 7 times this week!”
There was no better payment than that feeling of accomplishment.
I had uncovered a passion and a talent for leadership and was producing tremendous results!
It was a passion that never left me even though my excitement around selling DirecTV did fade.
After leaving Idaho to return home to NJ, I spent the next years putting excitement and fulfillment on the back burner so that I could just make some money.
I started with a Corporate job that was neither exciting, fulfilling, or freeing. Then I moved to Gig work which was exciting and offered more freedom but still not fulfilling. Lastly, I was a vendor for Obama phones. This was exciting and very freeing, a little more meaningful (helping out those in need) but I was still meant for more…
In 2019 I heard a voice say “Now,” “Now’s the time to make a decision.”
I declared that day that “I would no longer be doing things for money that was not aligned with my passion or purpose.”
I NEVER looked back.
Now, back in 2015, I knew that 1 thing everyone could use was a heightened sense of and a deep love and appreciation for self but I had no idea I would be a facilitator or supporter of their personal journeys!
I was called to move into full-time coaching but had no clue where to start.
So, I hired a coach.
It was a $10k investment when I barely had $1,000 to play with. But I put down what I had and committed to finding a way to pay my coaches but also my rent 😬
One of the absolute BEST moves I had ever made in my LIFE.
Hiring a coach is like buying a personal development book except it listens to you and gives you feedback. It calls you out and holds you accountable for showing up and playing BIG and full out!
Through this investment, I was emboldened and challenged to Launch my first programs under the umbrella “GYST” (Get Your Shine Together)
Now, I’m not squeamish talking about 5 figure ‘cloth talk’ and have earned upwards of $10,000 in a month because I am dedicated to producing results for my clients.
My results are lifetime transformation.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If my best friend was coming to LA we’d eat good drink good, and most importantly think good.
First, we’ve got to get active so we’d go on a hike up Runyon Canyon and check out the Hollywood sign.
Then we’d go to Eat This Cafe for lunch hit santa monica or venice for the beach experience
and end off with a trip to Perch DTLA for the rooftop vibe, good food and phenomenal drinks.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I want to shout out
Billionaire PA – for showing me firsthand what it looks like to connect with a mass of people to inspire them.
Preston Smiles – For being the example of the transformation that gets to take place within me and the ones that I can support others in realizing
My mother – for gifting me my adventurous and curious nature
My late father – for instilling in me a foundation of self-responsibility and integrity that helps me base my actions on what’s best for everyone.