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Patrick Sweeney is the son of a first generation Irish immigrant. He paid his way through college where he took up rowing. With just two years of experience, he decided to take on the world and try out for the USA Olympic team. Five years later, he finished second in the Olympic trials and won national and international championships in the process. But he could have been an Olympic Gold Medalist.
After the Olympics, Patrick attended a Top 5 business school where he would earn his MBA and go on to start one of the first cloud computing companies raising almost $30 million, winning great clients, and eventually selling the company. But the venture capitalist made most of the money.
He had the skill and more than enough will. He was held prisoner by fear.
Then he almost died, and everything changed.
He bootstrapped a new company he sold for millions. He earned eight patents, published three books, started setting world records, and in 2018 won “the world’s toughest bike race”, the 3,000 mile long Race Across America. He started living the life of his dreams. He invested in dozens of start-ups from Slack to Y-Combinator and has been recognized by Presidents and rock stars for his contributions to charity and business. Once he discovered his Fear Frontier™, Patrick unlocked a level of power, performance, and happiness he never thought possible. He searched out the science behind why and how, and today his mission is to share the neuroscience of success and the power of fear with as many people as possible. You can read his story below:
“There are times in your life when you have to make a change. Those times of change become milestone moments that alter everything. You get a glimpse of what life could be if you reached inside and tamed your fears to become the person you were meant to be.
For years, I worked hard building technology companies that would earn me millions. I was grinding out 75-hour weeks, pushing my body to the limits and feeling exhausted. Mostly, I just didn’t like who I was becoming, I was always second-guessing, always worried. I still had many deep-seated fears I was avoiding or numbing out. The day I stepped out of a hospital, having fought for my life against a rare case of Leukaemia and almost losing it, I had my milestone moment. I felt the wind for the first time and took the opportunity to stop and think, “What the hell am I doing with my life?” Things changed from that moment and courage became my super-power. Today, I chase adventure for a living and help others use fear to transform their lives. Yes, that’s right. I’m a full-time adventurer. The day I started taking steps to find my hidden fears, I unlocked a passion and energy for life that I never knew. I found courage.
I’ve seen too many people spend a lifetime working for the weekend and saying, "I wish I could do that, but I can’t.” Only you can change the story you tell yourself and find adventure in your life. In fact, you need to do it for yourself, for your kids and for the people in your life that matter the most. Every year, I speak to countless people longing to feel an energy and zeal for life. I don’t believe that we need to give up things like money, career or business to find the joy that evades us but so many of us spend a lifetime chasing goals that won’t make us happy and never facing the fears that hold us back. We can have it all but we need to face our demons, use our fear as fuel and become the truest representation of ourselves.
I’ve been an Olympic level athlete and best selling author. I’ve grown technology companies and sold them for millions, I’ve done TEDx talks to thousands. But right now; this very day, I’m living my life to its fullest, exploring the adventurer within, breaking world records and embracing every day as if it were my last. I want to help others do the same, and become better partners, parents, and people.
The way I see it – it takes courage and accountability. At times finding our fears within may feel weird and scary…but so does sex for the first time, and look how that turned out! I’m Patrick Sweeney…and I’m a full-time adventurer.”
Creating a Culture of Courage
What holds most people back from their true potential isn’t lack of skill or lack of will, it’s fear.
The human brain is designed primarily for survival. This architecture interferes with our happiness, success, and fulfillment in all walks of life. In fact, at a typical industry conference or sales kick-off, attendees learn so many new and exciting strategies, ones that could dramatically change their business, yet only a fraction of attendees go back and implement those new ideas. Many leaders fear failure or are afraid of changing the status quo and rocking the boat. Stagnant leaders live in a fearful culture where employees do things because “that’s the way it’s always been done.” In this engaging presentation, Patrick explains why we get stuck in a prison of less-than-peak performance. Then he demonstrates tangible neuroscience techniques that you can use immediately to increase your power, success, and change every aspect of your life.
Imagine finishing second in the US Olympic trials in rowing, when you could have been a gold medalist, or raising almost $30 million and creating the first cloud computing company only to have your venture capitalist make all the money when it was sold, and worst of all needing six cocktails just to get on a plane for a business trip, or not going at all. Fear locked Patrick Sweeney in a prison of constant suffering until he met with the ultimate terror – the diagnosis of a rare form of leukemia and a slim chance of survival. After beating the disease thanks to talented doctors, cutting edge mental techniques learned at the Olympic training center, and
the grace of God, his whole life changed. He took flying lessons, and started another company, then another, then set world records. Now a multimillionaire, commercially rated stunt pilot –Patrick’s superpower is courage and he’s used it to create the life of his dreams.
Today, his mission is to teach millions of people the superpower of courage. For his upcoming book Fear as Fuel he interviewed more than 30 neuroscientists and psychologists and learned the latest investigations on how the brain functions and the secrets of overcoming our fear-based survival instincts. Patrick translates a vast continuum of scientific research into practical tactics on how to live to your fullest potential, create super-successful businesses, fulfilling relationships and raise courageous, happy children. Using fear as the fuel you’ll begin to confidently make the best decisions of your life and unleash a new level of power. His talk
gives you a sneak peek of what is sure to be a best seller
The Surprising Power of Fear
This is Patrick’s award-winning keynote that Google’s European Headquarters called the best of 2017. Patrick covers the surprising ability to use the brain’s autonomic reactions as power and what the newest neuroscience on fear means for peak performance.
Building A Culture of Courage
Combine a three-time entrepreneur with a neuroscience expert whose superpower is courage and you get a unique insight into creating a culture of courage. It is exactly what companies need to drive innovation, creativity, and growth. Audiences will learn how to catalyze their organization into not only the dominant player in their field but also a fulfilling, rewarding and exciting place to work.
Start-up me - running your life and career like an entrepreneur
Patrick goes back to his roots as an entrepreneur and angel investor and reveals the top five principles anyone can adapt to create successful companies, personal lives, and careers.
Breaking the Rules in Life and Business
What if you knew which rules were holding you back and how to break them? Think of how your life would change if you had no ceiling on what you can accomplish. Patrick gives the principles that helped three of his companies dominate their field and crush the competition.