The problem with society in the past is it normalized and glorified silent struggles. The better we are at concealing our problems and keeping a happy facade, the stronger we are.
We were unaware of the mental and physical consequences of harbouring negative energies. We were unaware of how it affected not only our relationship with ourselves but also with others.
That has changed over the last few years, and we see more and more people open up. We see people baring themselves and making themselves vulnerable, especially on social media. Whatever their reason may be, to other people, it can mean many good things. They do not feel alone. They feel relieved that they would come out of everything in one piece as the other person has.
Yet we still see people shamed, blamed, and called names for being vulnerable. We need to move past that. We need to end the passive-aggressive behaviours that resulted from keeping things to ourselves.
Why? Vikram Deol answers that question in this episode of GetCoached360. He is a Conscious Business Coach and an established realtor and investor.
Vikram will be talking about vulnerability and what we can get out of sharing our story.
He has gone through a rollercoaster life himself. From boarding school in India, divorce to imprisonment, the Universe made itself clear about karmic justice.
After years of misfortune, he came to a point where he knew he needed to do something. He became a Platinum Partner with Tony Robbins, learned from him, and started his spiritual journey. Like everyone, Vikram did not always have everything figured out. There were several low points in his life until he finally sought wisdom from a spiritual teacher.
Now, it is time for Vikram to give back. As entrepreneurs, we can learn a lot from people who have already been through the journey. Hopefully, through their stories, we can find the right direction to start our own journey.
Covered in This Episode
Early Life and Background
[1:39] Accepting that you are not a normal kid
[4:45] Shipped to a boarding school in India
[6:24] Returning to the U.S.: trouble v. responsibilities
[7:32] The Importance of Keeping Your Word
Dealing With Karmic Justice
[9:36] An abusive relationship and a rough divorce
[14:00] Karma is a dish best served cold
[15:56] 19 nights in jail for property damage
[17:49] A Lesson on Spirituality with Tony Robbins
[19:16] The Crash
[21:20] Repurposing: Sharing and Allowing Vulnerability
[22:50] Holistic Teaching Practices
[26:04] Bringing Consciousness to Everything
The Power of Vulnerability
[30:56] NEVER dismiss a person’s feelings
[33:45] Giving people permission to open up and talk
[35:10] Learning to handle negative emotions
[36:09] The Vikram disease
[38:28] Accepting vulnerability
[40:55] Real-life examples have the most impact
[43:55] The Power of Giving
[51:13] Start by forgiving yourself
[53:01] Perspective: Bad luck v. Lessons Learned
[54:26] Recap: Be Open and Raw
[58:28] How to Contact Vikram Deol
Chris Ippolito 1:09
Vikram Deol 1:11
What’s up, Chris?
Chris Ippolito 1:13
How are you?
Vikram Deol 1:14
Man, I’m doing great, doing great.
Chris Ippolito 1:16
Vikram Deol 1:17
How about yourself?
Chris Ippolito 1:17
Glad to have you on the “Get Coached Podcast.” We connected quite a while ago, reconnected, we’re making this happen, and I’m glad. Because you’ve got a fantastic story, which is how I love to start every episode. Do you mind sharing what your personal journey has been to get to where you’re at now?
Vikram Deol 1:39
Yeah. Well, it all started with a drunk night that my parents decided to do some things and create me. I don’t know that I know much about that part, I don’t know that I need to know any more than what happened. We’re done, now we’re here.
I mean you can guide it through. That way if you need to tell me to get back on track, please do.
I grew up in a small city in California, very whitewashed old farmer oil city. My dad is a doctor, I grew up in a nice, very upper middle-class family. For the most part everything appeared to be on the up and up, everything appeared to be normal. Deep down inside though, ever since I was even a kid, I always felt like I didn’t belong and I always gravitated towards older people because I felt they were more accepting. I always hung out with my friends, but I wasn’t always with them, I was just sometimes tagging along, I was always with my brother’s friends.
As I look back on life, I didn’t make friends very well. I think that served me in a point, but it also disempowered me because I didn’t know how to deal with a lot of the emotional aspects of growing up, having a brotherhood, a sphere of influence, and people that I could look up to. Although my dad and I have had our battles through life, we’re currently in a battle, which sucks, it shaped who I was and how I looked at people. I can remember as a young age just always being there for others because people just felt at ease to talk to me.
As a kid growing up I wasn’t the sports athlete, I always liked to talk about money. Anybody who was successful I wanted to be around. I always picked my uncles’ brains, I always picked my parents’ brains, their friends. The first question if somebody comes over and I knew they were in sales or business, I’d be, “How’s business? Did you sell any cars today? How much money did you make? Did you guys hit your quota last week?” I didn’t say “quota,” but, “Did you guys hit the numbers you wanted,” as a little kid.
Then as I got older, like fourth, fifth, sixth grade, started to make goals. One of my goals was jog-a-thon, I wanted to win a Sega Genesis. I remember my parents said, “We won’t buy you one. But if you earn the money, you can buy whatever you want with it, or whatever.” There was a jog-a-thon and the award was a Sega Genesis. That was my first goal that I had set for myself outside academics.
I learned that I had a power of influence. I don’t think it was influence at the age, I just knew that I could get people to listen to me. If I set my mind to something, I always typically got it.
Fast-forward a couple years later, my parents sent us to boarding school in India, which really shaped a lot of my youth and it really shaped a my strength that I had in myself. When your parents send you to a foreign country at a young age, and it wasn’t really the norm anymore. When my mom and dad were young, that was the norm. When you’re born in the ’80s and you’re growing up in a predominantly white culture, they don’t do that, they don’t send their kids to boarding school.
We go shipped off. I say “shipped off” because that’s what it felt like to me because it wasn’t really something I wanted. Even if I wanted it, it just wasn’t the right thing, in my opinion. But at a young age I realized, “Hey, I’m a lot stronger.” We would bribe the neighborhood kids to go and get us these little dumplings, they called it a momo back in the day. But we’d bribe the neighborhood kids, we’d give them money, they’d run and get us food, then they’d come back and we would dish them the change. Because we didn’t care about 4 or 5 rupees, but that was a lot of money for them, or 20 rupees, or whatever it was. I’m like, “That’s like 50 cents, who cares?” But to them it was a lot of money, they became our little delivery drivers. We’d throw them money over the fence.
Learned a lot of things about life, about how the system works, and we saw a lot of corruption growing up, I saw a lot of corruption growing up. It made me, at a young age, rebel against the system, rebel against corporations and people of power. Because I always saw people in power as greedy or power-hungry and not necessarily serving the best for the community, but serving the best for themselves.
As I got older, I came back from India after two years we were there, we went to high school, no friends at all, and just a rough couple of years of transitioning into having a group of guys or gals that I could hang out with. I ended up hanging out with great guys, still friends with them today, but we got in trouble, we were the troublemakers. We were drinking, we were smoking, and doing drugs. We were always intoxicated, but I always had that head on my shoulders where I was like, “Okay, there are still responsibilities.”
I used to help my parents with their restaurant. Again, just learning all these skills, learning all these little skills throughout my life. Go through school, failed a couple of colleges, whatever, no big deal. Got a degree, got a job, failed the job, because in my heart I didn’t believe in the product, the service that I was selling. That’s when I realized, “Okay, if I don’t like the service or if I don’t like the product, I can’t do it, I can’t put my heart into it.” That’s really hard for me because I love pouring my heart into people, into my passions, into just anything.
Like this whole day all I’ve been thinking about is our time together. My prep is very low because it’s about me. I don’t have to prep, I’ve been doing that my whole life. But I’ve been thinking about this the whole day. I’m like, “Okay, 5:00 I’m going to go outside, I’m going to get sun, I’m going to work out, I’m going to come back, I’m going to take my cold shower, I’m going to get my water ready. I’m going to be set up, rocking and rolling at 6:50,” or, I’m sorry, whatever time it is. “If we need five minutes before, I’m ready.” My whole day is geared just to this one hour that I’m with you. Because that’s just how I operate, I can’t think about anything else because this is the most exciting thing that I’m doing today.
Chris Ippolito 8:19
Yeah. I appreciate that, that’s awesome.
Vikram Deol 8:22
Yeah. Well, I mean I think I feel the same coming from you. I mean just for anybody who has the opportunity that’s lucky and blessed enough to be on your show, they’ll see the amount of prep that you have to do to be on your show. That means you’re doing your own prep work behind the scenes. I want to respect that. Because it’s not that my time is more valuable than your time or yours is more, it’s that we made an agreement to spend time together.
I learned at all these different moments in time the importance of keeping your word, the importance of just having interpersonal skills. If you’re on time, you’re late. Early is on time. Don’t even try showing up late because your last check has already been mailed to your house, you’re fired, don’t do it. That’s how I grew up, right? Old-school grandpa. When the levy broke in his farm, he didn’t wait for the workers to show up, he was out there. By the time the workers rolled out of bed half hung over, drunk, and irritated we had already put the levy back together and they just had to seal it up. But we had already plugged the hole. That’s just how I grew up watching him.
Those were some of the things, but as I got older the things that I was able to escape as a kid started to pay its karmic justice. People say, “Karma is a bitch,” and I say, “Oh, no, no, no. Oh, no, no. Karma is exactly what you put out earlier coming back to you.” It’s not a bitch. If it’s a bitch, that means you’re a bitch, or you were one, and now you’re just being paid back. Whatever you call karma is just repayment of how you were yesterday or the day before.
I did a lot of good in the world maybe this life or a previous life, I don’t know, but I didn’t do enough because it started to rear its head up. When I got married, I got married around 27, 28, 29, somewhere in that range. Those numbers I’m not good at, but math and things like that I’m really good at. If it’s commissions, I’m very good at it. If it’s how much money should be in my bank account, I’m excellent at it. If it’s how much money I owe you, I probably know, but hopefully you forgot.
I got married and we had a really rough divorce. We had a very rough relationship and we had a very rough divorce, a lot of abuse, a lot of name-calling, a lot of things that I’m sure she’s not proud of. I talked to her actually a few months ago. I wrote her something a few years ago and she wrote back a couple months ago. She said she had just blocked out that whole period of time. I was like, “Well, you’re lucky, I still remember it.” I remember it, it was brutal and it was painful. For a while I may have been the good guy, but after a certain period of time I became just as bad as anybody else. Or maybe I never was the good guy, our memory only serves us 50% of the time. 50% is proper, 50% of our memory is hogwash.
That was really hard, but I just dove back into what I know, and that was work. There was no meditation, there was no prayer, there was no spiritual journeys, there was no any of that stuff. It was just straight up back to work. “Make money. If you make money, everything starts to disappear. When you make enough money, enough things will start to disappear.”
That worked for a while, I got the nice car, upgraded a couple of time, ended up with the dream Range Rover. The Range Rover that the guy that lives next to Bill Gates says, “Oh, you just got the Sport Range Rover? God, you really need to step your game up, Vik. This is what my daughters drive.” I’m like, “Yeah, but you live like three houses away from Bill Gates, I don’t. I would hope your daughters drive something super awesome.” He’s like, “Yeah, dude, I mean it’s a nice car. But if you want to be a man, step up.”
I was still looking for external validation. I ended up buying that car, which I’ve always wanted. But when I bought it, I was like, “I’m there.” That really wasn’t the case. But I felt good for a while. Then the cars, the clothing, and living in the nice place, some of those were great and others were just a badge of honor to show off to other people.
Chris Ippolito 13:01
Right. What kind of work were you doing?
Vikram Deol 13:04
Oh, I started in real estate. During the marriage we started flipping real estate and we were successful in a lot of deals. We actually made money on all the deals. It was a time when the market was just bottoming, we were able to make some money on all the deals. Then I got into real estate sales, then I built a sales team.
We were very successful at real estate. The team was on fire, I mean it was on fire. But, again, karmic justice always has to get paid. It’s either going to get paid in this lifetime, which is better for you guys and gals. If not, then it will get paid in another lifetime. You don’t want to continue to pay this lifetime’s justice in another lifetime, you’d rather start that next life in a Lamborghini or a private jet, something like that, because you paid your debt to society in this lifetime.
I started going to Tony Robbins’ events because after my divorce I got the girl of my dreams, I mean beautiful, smart, hard working. I mean we would role play. Not sexually role play, but role play sales. One day she came home with this card of objections. We would sit there, we’d role play it, it was awesome, and I loved it. We would open a bottle of wine and we wouldn’t even drink it because we were like, “Oh my god, why did we open that wine yesterday?” She’s like, “I don’t know.” I’m like, “We don’t even drink when we’re with each other.” We were just really good. I wasn’t good though.
I would cheat on her and I was just a fucking dick, man. When you say it out loud, I’ve only started talking about some of these things recently. I would lie to people. People were like, “Oh, did you ever cheat on a girl?” I’m like, “No, I’m a good guy.” I’m like, “Fuck, dude, you can’t keep lying like that.” Karmic justice keeps coming up.
I ended up one night going out with some friends and she got drunk, I got drunk, we were at separate parties. She ended up hooking up with a guy that had a big crush on her and I found out about it. That night I was inebriated beyond belief. About 4:00 in the morning, when I had to leave wherever I was at, it was just like an out-of-body experience. I’m watching myself get into this Uber, it’s pouring rain, I get the keys to her place, I go there, and in anger I just start trashing her place. That’s bad, real bad, damaging somebody’s place, damaging their sense of security. I didn’t break into her place, but you still take away that sense of security that somebody has in their home.
What makes it worse from a loss standpoint is that when you’re in a relationship, everything you do is under the title of domestic violence. They don’t teach you that when you watch the wild, Wild West movies and all this stuff, that this is a form of domestic violence. Nobody tells kids that yelling, screaming, fighting, not talking to somebody, ignoring people for long periods of time, that’s a form of abuse. Well, I grew up in a situation like that, that’s how we grew up. We would yell, we would scream, we’d punch, we would ignore. That was just how we grew up.
That’s what I knew, that was just my pattern. When something didn’t go my way, you’d break something and people start to listen. I didn’t know it was that bad. I mean I knew it was bad, but I didn’t know how bad it was. I didn’t know how the karmic justice got repaid.
Anyways, the low point of my life was getting arrested and going to jail when the judge said, “You need to spend some time in the slammer.” I got put on work release. For those of you who know what that is, sorry, or not sorry. I don’t know, depending on how you look at it. For those of you who don’t know what it is, good for you, don’t find out for yourself. But I had to spend every night in jail and I just got blessed that I had an officer who let me out so I never spent more than like 18 hours in jail. It was a really soft jail, it wasn’t prison. It was for the not-so-bad offenders, but there were some crazies in there. But I spent 19 nights in jail and I remember on the 19th night going in thinking, “Man, this is crazy. Holy shit, this is crazy. You grew up in the back of a Mercedes and now you’re in jail.” I was like, “This can’t continue.”
I never talked to my ex after the day that I broke all of her shit, we’ve never had a conversation, we’ve never had any true closure to it. Which I’ve had to just accept, unfortunately, but never been able to chat with her afterwards. Was a prisoner in my own house for a few years, that gave me a lot of time to really think about how shitty of a person I was my previous life and how moving into the second chapter of my life I didn’t want to be like that. Did some personal growth, signed up for Tony Robbins, became a Platinum Partner.
Then I realized that successful people are also very spiritual. I thought you just had to be a part of a religion. I thought it was either you’re religious and spiritual or you’re not. I’m not, but I still believe. I took off my bracelet so it doesn’t clink and interrupt our sound, but this is like a cross for a lot of people. But in our culture it’s what we wear to signify. I believe that there’s higher powers, I just didn’t like the organized part of it.
Going to these Tony Robbins events, learning about meditation, reiki, and all these different things, I was like, “Oh my god, you can be spiritual, own a business, be successful, and be rich?” Not rich, but wealthy. And that’s what I did. I started meditating more, I started doing affirmations, gratitude journals, just started to clean up my inner being.
My karmic justice hadn’t been fully repaid yet because I hired what I thought was going to be the person. Gary Keller from Keller Williams says that you’re five or seven hires away from your retirement. I thought I had one of those five or seven people. I can’t remember, I have to look it up. But nonetheless I thought I had one of those key components that I was hiring that was going to really take us to the next level. She ended up siphoning money from me, she was stealing money, she had a pill addiction, she had an alcohol problem, and she thought she was going to be Mrs. Deol. She just thought that it didn’t really matter because in her head she wasn’t there. I can’t fault her for not being there, it’s my fault for not seeing that. I was blinded by the money.
I let go of somebody who really cared about me, my family, and really took care of me when I was going through my shit. I had to let her go and I ruined that relationship. Then this new chick is fucking stealing from me and I let her go. That’s when my whole world just crumbled. I just physically, mentally, emotionally couldn’t pick up the pieces anymore. I was broken, dude. The glass had shattered too many times, the duct tape was all ruined, and just pulling it apart was just painstaking. I just had to pull myself apart.
People, don’t think by any stretch of the imagination that I’m perfect, sometimes people see the stuff I post. I try to be as clean as I can, but I still do crazy things, man. I still like to live a wild life, that’s just part of my DNA. But now, you can’t try, I’m being more honest to people, I’m not hurting them, I’m not being selfish. I’m still working on that because it’s a pattern that you’ve got to break.
When I left the real estate business I asked myself, “What do I want to do, where do I get the most passion and pleasure?” It’s from working with people like you, it’s with helping people with their businesses. My friends text me, “Hey, what should I do with this?” I’m like, “Well, that’s easy,” boom, boom, boom. “Oh my god, why didn’t I think of that?” “Because you’re in the trenches, I’m not. I can see it from the height.” “Well, how do I do that?” “I don’t know, let’s reverse engineer it.” An hour later they’ve got a plan that they execute on and their business grows 10 fold, 10% over the next 30 days, because that one thing that we implemented.
I realized that was one of my super powers, I also realized one of my super powers was the ability for me to share my crazy stuff that’s happened, family, jail, divorce, ups and downs, one minute you’re making half a million dollars, the next minute you’re two years into it and you haven’t made $50 grand. It’s like, “What the fuck, what’s going on?” Then you start some things up and you’re like, “Wait a minute, my sole purpose, the gap is just so big.” That’s led me to where I’m at today where I realize that getting people to open up and be honest about themselves allows me to go in there just so much easier and work with them to remove blocks.
When I got into coaching a couple years ago, I never could fully jump in because I don’t believe that coaching is just about business. Mentorship isn’t about business. I might not be your model for relationships because I’m not in the relationship you want. You might use me as what not to do in a relationship because I can teach you a lot of that. But I can also say that, because of the failed relationships, I’ve put in a lot more work than people who have good relationships.
You might have a good or great relationship, but it’s not outstanding. Because what’s the enemy of great? Good, because you’re in a good relationship. You’re like, “Well, I don’t really need to work on it.” But you have a little bit of something missing. Or maybe in the health aspect there’s something missing, or maybe in the finance aspect there’s something missing, or maybe there’s something missing in the business. Or maybe you’re doing great in the four Fs, fitness, faith, finance, and…
Chris Ippolito 23:52
Vikram Deol 23:53
Family. But you’re not having any fun. Maybe you’re always saying “yes” to other people, but you never say “yes” to yourself. Your family loves you, you’re going to the gym every day with your wife, she’s super excited, but you just feel like you don’t have any time for yourself, you don’t have any fun time for yourself, or the work you’re doing, you’ve lost the joy in it, or something of that nature. I realize that bringing in this manifestation portion, bringing in this holistic portion of life into all aspects of what we do feels so much better.
I don’t know that this is actually a space that’s been created. I know that there’s holistic people out there, I know there’s coaches out there. I know Tony Robbins is very spiritual, he doesn’t really talk much about it. Then you hear people that talk about karmic justice, you hear people that are talking about spirituality, meditation, manifestation, and I’m like, “That’s the shit that I love doing.” Why can’t we teach that? Why can’t we teach that to people, still be entrepreneurs, and we’re not woo-woos smoking weed, long hair, dreadlocks, tie-dyed shirts, incense everywhere? Why can’t we have both of those, why can’t you?
Chris Ippolito 25:13
Yeah, I think that there is a market for it and I think it’s becoming a lot more commonplace. Because that’s an area that I enjoy, as well. I’ve felt this way for many, many years, as far as being spiritual but not religious, like you said. I feel like I meet a lot of people that are in that category of being spiritual, but not religious. Because wouldn’t you find a lot of that where you live? I would guess that would be very prominent there.
Vikram Deol 25:55
Where I live is not L.A.
Chris Ippolito 25:57
Okay. But close enough as far as the proximity. Like California, I feel like, the state.
Vikram Deol 26:02
Chris Ippolito 26:03
Vikram Deol 26:04
No. When I go to L.A., I’m in a whole other world of plant medicine and people. You go to a restaurant and you order your crazy-ass meal, it’s totally normal. Or sometimes, I don’t always do it, but on these water bottles which you can’t see I write on there, it’s like “fun,” “joy,” “love,” “happiness,” “health,” “wealth,” my name. Sometimes I write on the bottom. Because if you give these messages to the water and the food that you eat, you bless it and you change its structure. You can structure water just by talking to it.
I always try to keep it in this little canister. I’m always trying to think, “Okay, what would Mother Earth feel if I was throwing this shitty plastic on her every day?” Well, she’s not going to like it. There are some days where you have to use plastic bottles, but for the most part I have a filter, I fill it up, it’s 32 ounces. I know that if I drink four of these a day, I’m at my gallon, pretty damn close to my gallon. These are easy for me to slam down, I don’t have to think about it.
It’s bringing consciousness to everything you do so that you’re the person that’s actually making the decision instead of the decisions being made for you by some other person. I feel like I grew up somewhat naive but very conscious unconsciously. I didn’t know that there was a term for it, I didn’t know what we were doing.
The city I live in probably has a bigger conscious community, I’m somewhat tapped into it. It’s just it’s not like the communities that I had in Seattle, the communities that I have in L.A., New York, or some of these bigger cities. This is still a very isolated place and it’s very much so a bubble that’s starting to be burst because it’s become affordable, there’s new blood coming here. But it’s still very heavy agriculture, oil, and those are very old-school professions. Although some of the people in there are very holistic in their thought processes, it’s just you don’t share that a lot. Sometimes the mentality of the people there are very white-collar workers. No, white collar, blue collar?
Chris Ippolito 28:38
Blue collar would be working with the hands, white collar is desk jockeys, like I used to be.
Vikram Deol 28:44
Chris Ippolito 28:45
Vikram Deol 28:46
Blue-collar workers. Yeah, I don’t know the color schemes of all these things, but they’re out there in the fields, they’re out there in the oil fields. A lot of them don’t get college educations, this city is one of the worst for college educations. We’re also the city that came out with the two doctors who I think are fucking morons. Am I allowed to swear on your podcast?
Chris Ippolito 29:04
Oh yeah, that’s fine. I just mark it as explicit.
Vikram Deol 29:07
Okay. Those two doctors that came out, they actually, I believe, are the owners of an urgent care center. They come out saying that what’s happening is just ridiculous. We all suffer, we all need to make money. When the time was good, you were making a buttload of it. I don’t know what you did with your money, but you’re still open for business. Just because people aren’t coming in for an elective surgery doesn’t mean that they’re not coming to see you guys, they’re just going to their primary doctors instead of the urgent care centers. They’re just going somewhere where they feel safer. Don’t try to open up the whole world because of your greed.
I don’t agree with them, I think what they did was somewhat irresponsible. I could be wrong, in 10 years it could come out that they were 100% right. It still just came across to me and to a lot of people I know, we’re not talking Republican or Democrat, it’s just a Podunk place.
Chris Ippolito 30:06
Right. I’m assuming this is in reference to COVID-19, right?
Vikram Deol 30:11
Yeah, yeah, yeah. This will be a dated reference, in like three years it will be dated. But in a year and a half people will still remember March and April of 2020 as the COVID time.
Chris Ippolito 30:23
Yeah, the lockdown.
Vikram Deol 30:25
Chris Ippolito 30:28
I mean you’ve gone through, obviously, quite a journey, but you’ve shared that you’re just starting to share more of it. Why are you doing it and what’s the lessons learned from opening up about sharing your personal journey like you have?
Vikram Deol 30:56
Good question. The answer keeps evolving from the last time I talk about it. Because as you do it more, it’s still not easy. I can’t even look at you in the eyes on a Zoom call when I talk about it because it still feels like death. One, I’m not the only person who’s gone through it. There’s something in my story that I feel touches almost everybody. You might not have been divorced ever in your life, Chris, but do you know somebody who’s been divorced?
Chris Ippolito 31:30
Vikram Deol 31:31
Do you maybe have a family member who’s gone through a divorce? Cousin?
Chris Ippolito 31:34
Yes, cousin. A very good friend. Yeah.
Vikram Deol 31:40
You saw how it affected them.
Chris Ippolito 31:42
Vikram Deol 31:44
They might have had good relationships, I had a really tough one. You might know somebody, maybe your childhood was perfect, but my childhood I remember playing in a closet with my older brother and another boy, they were older than me. The older boy was the ringleader and he was like, “Hey, pull down your pants and let’s do some exploring.” I don’t know the length of time that that happened, but I know that there was times that my brother wasn’t around, that still went down, and it was a weird thing.
I had a therapist tell me that that’s just what kids do and I’m like, “Fuck you. Fuck you, dude. I don’t know, for me it feels like something a little bit more than just something kids do. If you’re trying to help me get over it, help me get through it, not just fucking deny that it happened. Fuck you, man.” He didn’t last very long after that.
Chris Ippolito 32:33
That feels like really bad advice from them, as far as like, “Oh, that’s just what kids do.” But if you’re sharing it in a way that it was an experience that stuck with you, there’s probably more to it. To just be like, “Nah,” just brushing it off like that, that’s crazy.
Vikram Deol 32:54
It felt a little crazy. Maybe I downplayed it, like, “Oh, it just happened once or twice.” I feel like it happened more times, but I don’t recall it, you block those out. I know people like, “Oh, I had it done for years,” and I’m like, “Well, your pain isn’t any better than mine.” Mine could have happened 5 times, it could have happened 100 times. It’s still painful as a kid to feel like that’s not what I wanted to be doing, that’s not what I thought was cool, I didn’t want to play that game, but that’s just what happened. Then you stop going to their house because you just feel weird. My brother almost ended up burning their house, I have a feeling there was something that had to do with that, those experiments and that. Because he didn’t purposely try to burn it down, but I feel like subconsciously he tried to burn it down.
Going through stuff of that nature, just when you openly connect with people and you share the deepest, darkest things that nobody wants to talk about, it gives them permission to open up and talk about their deepest and darkest secrets. I think the stats for child molestation are mind-boggling. Because people don’t talk about these things. You have to have a lot of courage to say, “The neighbor did this,” “The priest’s son did this,” “The pastor did this,” or, “My friend’s dad.” Or, fuck, dude, it could have been your mom’s boyfriend or your dad’s girlfriend that did these things to you. You’re told that if you talk about it, you’re going to get in trouble. Then there’s just the shame that goes around it. You’re a kid, you don’t need to be shameful. It gives me goosebumps. You don’t have to be shameful around these things, you have to open up and talk about it. We can’t get through life until we get through why we’re having blocks.
The line that my parents used to say was, “Just get over it.” I’m like, “I can’t fucking get over it, I’m fucking angry. Let me be angry. I need to be angry, I need to let this out. Give me a path to let this out, teach me how to get over it. Don’t just tell me, teach me.” That wasn’t there. Then that manifested different things.
I had to learn how to deal with these things. It cost me hundreds of thousands of dollars to invest in myself. Because it’s not a cost, it was an investment. I have an MBA from school, I didn’t learn fucking shit there. I didn’t learn anything that I feel like would benefit me. The one thing I remember is that I learned that Apple is not a technology company, it’s a marketing company. That’s what I remember from my MBA. It served me well because it made me realize that in order to make money, you need to not be in love with your service and product, you need to know how to market. It just served me well in life. But on the flip side, I mean it’s why I reach out to you guys to do these podcasts, this is marketing for us. This content is great, but, I’m very transparent, this is also how you get your name out there. You’ve got to get your face, voice, and story out, otherwise you’re just the guy that had a great story, then you died and you never shared it with anybody. People didn’t get to get the real benefit that they could have got had you shared it.
For me, the reason I share it is I want to make a new disease. COVID-19 came around, they got to make up a new disease. Fuck it, I’m going to make up a new disease, it’s called the Vikram disease. The Vikram disease is that you’re 100% vulnerable. I hope it spreads like wildfire. I mean people are scared of COVID, I hope that everybody gets infected with the Vikram disease. That’s the vulnerability bug. The more vulnerable I am with you, the more you trust me. The more you trust me and you open up to me knowing, “Fuck, dude, this guy has had a divorce, he’s been through jail, he grew up with a doctor’s family, he grew up in an Indian household.”
We don’t talk about this shit in my house. You come to my house, the lawn is perfectly manicured, the lines are in the carpet, the lines are in the lawn. It’s beautiful. My mom works her ass off to maintain my parents’ house. It’s a full-time job that never ends. But in that perfection there has to be imperfection. Even though the line looks perfect, if you look at the line it’s a little jagged, it’s not perfect.
There’s no such thing as perfection and I felt like I had to grow up in a life where everything was perfect. “If you’re not perfect, you get in trouble.” You get compared to the next kid. They didn’t do it to hurt me, that’s just what they knew. But it really fucked with me as I got older because I never felt good enough, I never felt worthy enough, I never felt like I was lovable. I always felt like in order to get love, I had to do more and be better. Which is what I always try to do, more and be better. That’s built into my DNA as a Capricorn, but it’s also something that I learned from my environment, “You never settle for second, you always strive for the best. You don’t get appreciation awards, you just go, go, go.”
Like, dude, you’re at home, you’ve got a newborn. We know it, it’s no big deal. I know you want perfect audio, I can see you muting this stuff. For all you out there that can’t see this, Chris is muting this channel left and right. He’s doing his best to keep the audio perfect for you because you just came off of NPR, they record it in a $50 million-dollar studio, and he’s doing it in his office that’s got a kid like three feet away from him.
Chris Ippolito 38:27
Right over there, yeah.
Vikram Deol 38:28
Yeah. And a wife seven feet away that’s like, “Honey, the kid needs your attention right now, wrap this shit up.” This is real life. We can talk about it, we can open up the blocks, and we can see what we need to work on. I’m not going to do the work, I’m going to be your guide for you to do the work. That’s all I am, I’m just a guide here on this planet. I was put through this stuff and I was given the voice that I was given to share it with people. I got in a big-ass fight with my little brother yesterday and he goes, “See, you didn’t learn shit.” I’m like, “All right, that’s cool. Maybe I did, maybe I didn’t. But I can tell you one thing, it took me a lot more from you to get upset than in the past.” I’ve improved. I might not be perfect, but I’ve come a long way.
Chris Ippolito 39:22
It’s the whole point of the journey, is to just be constantly growing. That was the big shift for me. How long has it been now? Three and a half years ago. Was just start the journey every day better tomorrow than you were the previously. It doesn’t matter the amount, just keep striving forward. That is really a big part of the podcast, as well, is to help people get to that next level incrementally. Because it’s not going to happen overnight. Like your personal journey has taken you how long?
Vikram Deol 40:04
Chris Ippolito 40:05
Right, exactly. For the people that they start off in this low point, they start making some changes and unfortunately they start comparing themselves to people on Instagram and all these social platforms that are really designed to show your highlights. They think that’s reality, then they give up and they just go, “I’m just going to go back to the way it was because it was easier.” It’s too bad, but I like the idea of trying to help people become more vulnerable. That’s exactly what I think a lot of people need to move on in their journey of life.
Vikram Deol 40:55
Yeah. Tony doesn’t do as many in his big stages anymore, and I don’t know what it’s going to look like moving in after this. Tony stopped doing his big interventions, unfortunately, a few years back. He still does them, but not as many as he did the first time I went there. It was like boom, boom, boom. Because real-life examples have the most impact.
Unfortunately now, with the Internet and the way that people are, they used his snippets to basically attack him. People would be recording it, then they’ll take a 5-minute, 10-minute answer, they’d condense it to a minute, and make him look like a whatever he is or he isn’t. I mean I don’t know if he’s a good man in his past life or a bad man, all I can see is what I see in front of me is a man that seems to care very much about growth and results. Because he’ll spend 18 hours in a fucking ice-cold room with you, literally pee two times, eat like three walnuts, four supplements, and that will be his full day of nutrition.
Chris Ippolito 41:59
Yeah, it’s crazy. I watched his documentary “I Am Not Your Guru.” It was really good. I’ve never gone to a Tony Robbins event, I’ve just only heard of the stories. I was like, “I don’t know if that would be my scene,” or whatever. But watching the documentary I was like, “Okay, I can see why people go to this and pay an enormous amount of money to be a part of his events and his world.” It looks infectious, it looks like you get in there and you just can’t help but get this energy from him and the audience.
Vikram Deol 42:42
One of the things that I remember from one of his events, and this is what powers me. Somebody said something, “Well, you live in this world, Tony, you’re around these people all the time.” He says, “Yeah, dumb ass, I fucking created my world. I created the reality I wanted. I didn’t want to hang out with negative people, I didn’t want to hang out with people who weren’t associated with growth, I didn’t want to hang out with people who all they do is complain. You’re going to complain at times, we’re all going to complain at times. It’s just, boom, how do we snap out of it.”
He said, “Eventually the people that I was around started to change. The people that were complaining and they were always the victim started going away. The people who had complaints but they were trying to figure out how to become the victor, they rose to the top. I just created layers, layers, and layers of people that I wanted to hang out with. Then that became my Platinum Partners. Then that grew so much because there were so many people who wanted to hang out in this world, in this environment, and in this culture, then there’s another step. It used to be Plats, then it’s the Lions, and there will be something else that evolves from that.”
Because people that go through level one, then they go through level two, then they go through level three, and every time they level up their personal selves they freaking make more money because they end up realizing, “Okay, well, what do I want money for? I make a half-million dollars a year, I need $150,000 to live on, I’m saving $250,000 a year, I give $100 grand to the government. I got $800,000 in the bank and whatever investment accounts, it’s growing 5%, 8% a year. I spin the interest back into the account, I’m not even taking money out of there. What am I doing with all this money?” You start to become disinterested because you have all this money that’s just sitting there doing nothing good. It’s protecting your family, but you’re not giving it.
Chris Ippolito 44:41
Yeah, it’s not adding more value. I’ve been fortunate enough to meet with a lot of people that have had financial abundance, because I want to specify that it was financial. A lot of them, they say you get to a point where you’re like, “Yeah, it’s nice to earn more money and increase your net worth, but it doesn’t make your life much happier.” It’s almost a diminishing return until you finally get to a point where it can suck joy out of life. Then what they start doing is exactly what you’re saying, they start giving and they give back however they can. Then that’s where they get that next level of fulfillment out of life. I think that should be what everybody strives for. Not to have the Lambos and all that stuff, what’s promoted online quite a bit. But if you can get to a point where you’ve got financial abundance, you’re going to find a lot more joy because eventually you’re going to want to start giving back and helping others.
Vikram Deol 45:53
Dude, I’m going to have maybe not a Lambo, I’m not really a big Lambo dude, I think they look great. Maybe it will be a Ferrari, maybe it will be a McLaren, maybe it will be some Porsches. I don’t know, I’m going to have a stable of cars, just like some people that have money have a stable of horses. In one regard horses are considered good, I just want my ponies to come in a V12. I don’t have to pick up their shit, it’s a lot of poop. I’m not against financial abundance and material items, there’s nothing wrong with having a $20,000-dollar watch or a $400,000-dollar car. But don’t just do it for those, do it because you’re doing other stuff.
Like I know the best $10,000 I’ve spent, over the course of a couple of years I donated $15,000, or $18,000, $20,000 to Make-A-Wish, but $10,000 of it was I pledged one wish. In my real estate days I pledged to pay one wish for the Make-A-Wish Foundation in Seattle, it just came in a couple months ago that I paid off the $10 grand, on top of all the other donations I gave. But I was like, “I’m giving a wish.”
Even when I didn’t work all throughout 2018, I didn’t have a job in 2018, I made some money in real estate referrals, I kept the thing going. Every month I saw it I’m like, “I have so much that I can give hundreds of dollars to these charities every month.” I’m so blessed. I don’t need to go out and buy a new shirt, but every month, no matter what, I never turned off the funnel to them. There was a month where it was like, “Where is the money going to come from?” I just said, “You know what? Forget it. Who cares? It’s just going to show up, it always does.” Every month I never had a problem. When you have that mindset of giving, giving, giving, the world changes for you. The world doesn’t change, you change and you start seeing differently.
There’s nothing wrong with the house, there’s nothing wrong with the cars. If that’s all you have though, then that’s shallow. If you have $100,000 a year going out to charity and you make $10 million a year, you’re giving $100,000, $200,000, or $500,000, whatever the money is, you’re giving a large percentage of every check, boom, like 5% or 10% every time to a charity of your choice, you’re going to do fine in life, you’re going to continuously be blessed.
Then you go out with your extra money and you buy your nice house, you buy the car you want, you buy the shoes you want, your wife wants to buy a Chanel purse, fine, no problem. But she also says, “Honey, if somebody says, ‘I want your purse,’ I might just give this purse to somebody one day. If I’m sitting at a ball game and somebody goes, ‘I like your purse,’ I might just be like, ‘Do you want it?’ I’ll take their purse and I’ll give them my purse. Just be aware, don’t be attached to this even if you bought it for me as a gift because I might regift it to somebody else, because we’re just so blessed. I don’t care about this. This is the same leather as this purse, but they massaged it a little bit more. If somebody else gets more pleasure out of it, they can have it. Just, honey, I just want you to know that if you buy me this, I might give it to somebody else and I want you to be okay with that.”
I’d be like, “Babe, it’s yours to do with whatever you want. I’d be shocked that you give away a $10,000-dollar purse, but on the flip side I’d be like, ‘Damn, dude, my wife is bad ass. Dude, fuck everything else, my wife is a fucking baller, yo.”
Those are some of the role models that I’ve seen. My aunt does that. She was at a ball game and she gave away her purse to somebody sitting next to her. It wasn’t a $10,000-dollar purse. But when they bought it, it was like a billion dollars for them. Now they’re super uberly successful and she will literally give the clothes off of her back to somebody, and so will he. He’s like, “Okay, you need a donation? Yeah, here, call my wife.” They’re like, “Well, can’t you do it?” He’s like, “Yeah, but you’ll get more from my wife, you probably want to talk to her.” He tells them what to do, like, “You got a hold of me, but I’ll give you like $500. She’ll probably give you $10,000, she might even join your board. Who knows? She might do a fundraiser for you at our house and we raise $500,000. I don’t know, but talk to her, not me.” They’re like, “Okay, bye.”
That’s why I share it, because I want you to share it and I want to work with you to get through your blockage. Maybe you don’t have a lot of blocks, then we can just dive right in and figure out what you’re doing and how to improve your productivity.
Chris Ippolito 50:39
Yeah, we’ve definitely covered a lot and I really appreciate how open you’ve been. I knew this was going to be that kind of episode, I mentioned it on one of our calls, that I just had this feeling it was going to be quite raw. We’ve covered a lot and I wanted to see and ask you a final question. With everything that we’ve covered, what would be that one piece of advice you would share with the audience to help them level up wherever they need it most?
Vikram Deol 51:13
The biggest way for me to level myself up, and I’ll speak to myself because I don’t know your audience very well, the biggest thing for me to level up is forgiving myself for all the things that I’ve done because they were all there for a purpose. Everybody who’s touched my life needed what I gave them so that they could have the life that they were supposed to have. There’s no coincidences when it comes to the pain that we go through, there’s no coincidences when it comes to the learnings that we go through, there’s no coincidences when it comes to the people that cross our paths. It’s just a matter of are we open to letting that in or not.
My advice is all those things that just killed you and that you want to bury, being touched by somebody, being raped by somebody, all those blocks that you have that are emotional that manifest their way into stress or into feelings of “I’m not worthy of this job.” I mean there was literally times where I’d bring in commission checks that were five figures and I would just think, “Why me? What did I do?”
I grew up in a fucking fat-ass house. My parents live in an 8,000-square-foot house. Yeah, it’s not in Beverly Hills, but it’s still an 8,000-square-foot house. Anywhere you put it, it’s a bad-ass house. That’s what I came back from India to, was a Toyota Land Cruiser, which was super expensive, a Mercedes or a BMW, I don’t know, whatever was in the garage, and an 8,000-square-foot house. It was insane. We went from a normal house to this. Coming back from a Third World country, I was like, “Pfft.” People feel like just because you grew up like that, you aren’t allowed to have problems, you’re not allowed to have insecurities, bad shit is not supposed to have happened to you because you’re privileged. Well, guess what, bad shit happens to everybody, but it’s not bad unless you see it as bad. If you see it as good, it’s a learning lesson. If you see it as bad, it’s bad, of course. Your reality is your truth.
Don’t look at the things that you’ve been through as a victim, look at them as a victor. Look at everything you’ve been through with pride, joy, and say, “You know what?” Ooh, it gives me goosebumps. The person you are today is due to the things that you went through yesterday. Bless the people that you hurt along the way. I hope that the people that came into my path when I was a Tyrannosaurus rex and a Tasmanian devil at the same time, I pray that those people became better because of what they had to go through because they learned that, okay, people like Vikram at that time are people you should avoid at all costs. Inside he was that person, but on the outside he was not, he was out of alignment. He thought he was going left, but he was really going right in circles.
Don’t be Vikram, be like Sam, be like Chris, be like John, be like somebody else who’s still going straight. They might veer to the right a little, but they catch themselves and they automatically adjust, like when you’re driving. Don’t beat yourself up, be vulnerable. Look, if you’re watching this podcast, you’re probably trying to be a coach, right?
Chris Ippolito 54:18
Possibly. I know some are. Really it’s just anybody who’s looking to build a life for themself.
Vikram Deol 54:26
The easiest way to connect with people is being open and raw. Nobody will ever fault you because you got molested as a kid. People will fault you because you try to hide it and you turn into a fucking fuck face because of it. But nobody is going to say, “Oh my god, you were molested as a child, you’re an asshole.” They’re going to say, “You got molested as a child, let’s work through this so that you stop treating everybody in your life like shit. You couldn’t control what happened to you, but you can control what happens next to the people around you because of what happened.”
Let it go. You’re five years old, you’re a baby, you’re a puppy, you’re so cute and innocent. I’m not sorry that it happened to you, I’m sorry that you continue letting that play out in your life. I’m excited that these things happened to you because that just means that you are a normal fucking person. Don’t let that continue to run your life. Open up, share freely. Yeah, you might lose some friends. Yeah, you might get some people to talk shit. Those aren’t your friends and those aren’t the people you want. The people that are going to be the hardest hit are the family members because those are the ones that are the hardest hit, but those are the ones that come around the strongest in the long term.
They’re the ones for a lot of people. For me, my biggest challenge is talking about things that have to do with family because it affects other people. But then at the same time the only reason why it affects them is because they’re still hurting and they need to go through their personal journey. Just be open, be honest, be real, be raw, and let this podcast be your guiding light to just open up at all times. You don’t need Chris’ permission or my permission, but use us as a sounding board. Every time you want to bite your tongue, just be like, “Maybe this will help somebody.” Even if it helps one person. This podcast literally, I’m almost positive, can save a life.
Chris Ippolito 56:22
Yeah. I’d be happy with that, of course, to have that kind of impact, yeah.
Vikram Deol 56:35
A lot of times you don’t know who’s down, suicide-wise. If you share this podcast with somebody, and I hope you guys are sharing this, that’s why we’re doing it, we want this to touch lives. I guarantee if you talk to somebody that’s going through financial struggles, they grew up in a big house, or they grew up in a certain way and they think they have to be a certain way, I guarantee you when they hear this and they’re like, “Fuck, dude.” We can just be real and raw. Guess what, your parents are going to come around. If they don’t, you’re not here to make them happy, you’re here to make your soul happy. Bless them, love them, praise them, send light to them, but go do you, boo. You deserve it, you’ve earned it.
That’s all I can say, is just fucking crush it, man, and don’t be scared to share because that’s how we get connected to people. All the influencers in the world we see is because they shared something with us that was so vulnerable that we felt that connection. That’s the only difference between you and an influencer, is that they’ve connected with more people. The reason why is because they shared something that was probably vulnerable at some point. Maybe they did something that was really exciting business-wise, but eventually they share that vulnerableness about what pushed them and drove them. It was typically because of a lot of pain growing up. Let your pain be your power.
Chris Ippolito 57:56
Yeah, that’s very, very good advice. I agree, I think there’s going to be a lot of impact with something like this. It’s hard for vulnerability like that to not influence or impact people. Like you said, if somebody wanted to reach out and connect with you because they sense that this is something, it’s a safe place for them, where is that best place for them to find you?
Vikram Deol 58:28
The easiest place is just DM me on Instagram. I’m on all the platforms. But if you DM me on Instagram, that’s probably the easiest. I’m spending the most time there right now to build that platform. It’s where all the young people are at and that’s who I really want to work with, is people that are 40 and under. I mean I’ll work with anybody, but I’d love to work with the 40 and under generation because I just see a dire need for those kids that grew up with such easy lives and now their lives are being rocked and they’re struggling. Or they grew up with families that are still so traditional and they’re not.
Go to Instagram, it’s vikram_deol_. That’s where you find me, man.
Chris Ippolito 59:08
Awesome. Thanks, Vikram. As I mentioned before, that was quite raw. It was a pleasure to have you on and definitely looking to have some future conversations with you.
Vikram Deol 59:20
Thanks, man, I appreciate it and I look forward to reconnecting not every three years.
Chris Ippolito 59:27
Awesome. Thanks a lot, take care.