I woke Day Four in Vegas knowing that it was going to be a long haul ahead. This day of the 10XGrowthCon was packed, and I was flying all night long back to VA. But I was no less excited as there were a few of my favorite speakers on the docket.
I began my day with 25 minutes of stretching in the hotel room because I knew I was going to be sitting a ton in the next 36 hours. Feeling great, I packed up my hotel room and checked out. Thankfully, one of my three buddies from the day prior invited me to meet for omelets again. A genuine friendship was established. We talked about ministry, business, and family struggles and have kept up since the event. That alone was one of the best takeaways from the trip.
With all that done, I headed into the event. Coach Burt began the day. Don’t know Coach Burt? He is a former high school teacher and present social entrepreneur/coach. I loved him. He was less, “Let me sell you my product,” and more, “I want to see you grow in each and every area of your life.” His genuineness from a stage to 9,000 people made me examine the way I speak, causing me to wonder if I connect with my 100 folks like he did to thousands.
Tim Storey spoke soon after. Tim Storey is often called Hollywood’s pastor, preaching each week in the hills and even spending time as Oprah’s life coach. His message was upbeat, genuinely faith-filled, and inspirational. I am not much for clichés, but sometimes a crowd just connects with them. He talked about how, once you achieve goals and move into a new area of growth and faith, you don’t want to go backward. He said, “Once you’ve touched the flames, you can’t live in the smoke.” Not how I would say it but, wow, 9,000 people ate it up. I was fortunate enough to meet Tim later in the day. He made a point to tell me that he was emphasizing faith in this conference, and he hoped it made an impact. I believe it did.
Following Tim Storey was Lewis Howes. Lewis is the host of the “School of Greatness” podcast. I love this podcast and have listened to nearly episode. Lewis’ quiet humility and confidence are infectious. His story of missing out on the NFL because of an Arena Football injury and living on his sister’s couch is inspiring. His talk was a bit similar to others I have heard, but it was fun and full of energy. Just by chance, as I was walking around the arena to stretch my legs, I bumped into Lewis. He and I had a real conversation. Lewis’ father is dying, so I asked how he was doing. I shared the story of losing my father. It was a nice moment and probably my favorite of the whole trip.
There were other speakers, but I will admit after 24 plus hours of talks, I was beginning to lose focus. When the time came, I headed to the airport. If you paid, there was another day of speakers, but I chose not to pay and stay. I headed to the airport for the long trip home. I got through security easily which never happens to me, and I walked around talking to Amy and the girls. Processing had already started because I didn’t want this to just be another conference without any real change happening.
I settled in for the long wait for my flight. I was sleepy which made me hopeful for dozing off on the plane. That wasn’t going to happen.
On my flight, I was stuck way at the back. After an hour or so in the air, I dozed off. About 15 minutes later, I woke up with a start. The stewardesses were literally handing a fellow passenger up over everybody, crowd-surfing style, to the front. He was unconscious. Anyone who was still awake (or awoken) was shaken. I eventually found out that the young man fell into unconsciousness, and they were trying to revive him. He was reportedly alright.
After what felt like the longest night in the world, we landed. From landing to home took 2 hours. With just a tiny bit of sleep, I needed to stay awake for the drive home. Thankfully, my Uber driver was talkative. A young Nigerian man, he spoke of faith and opened up about the questions of Catholicism versus Protestantism. Thankful for the conversation, I still struggled to stay awake. When he dropped me off at my car (with another 40 minutes of drive time ahead), he kindly asked if I was going to be okay. I was, but barely. I got home and slept for 3 hours.
All in all, I’m glad I went to the 10XGrowthCon, and I would like to go next year. I doubt I will ever find a ticket that cheap again, though rumor has it that the conference will be in Miami which would be nice. I think the talks and notes will continue to affect me, and I imagine processing them here and on my upcoming podcast, “This is Gonna Hurt”. Look for it on iTunes.
We’ll see what the long-range benefit of the conference was, but I know I’m changed in many ways from the talks, the sharing of the gospel, the lessons in public speaking, and lots more.
Thanks for reading all of these updates. Feel free to interact with any thought you might have.
You can find all of Gordon’s adventures at www.jgordonduncan.com
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