Why Crashing and Burning Might Be the Best Thing for You


There is a young man and an old man walking down the street.The young man looks over and sees a dog on a porch. The dog is howling and crying with tears were coming down his eyes.

The young man said to old man,

Young man: “Do you see that dog over there crying?”

Old man: “Yup, he cries all day like that”

Young man:  “Why does he cry like that?”

Old man: “Because he’s got a nail stuck in his foot”

Young man: “Why doesn’t he get up?”

Old man: “It’s not painful enough yet”

That story changed my life.


That was around the time that I was with a company called Cora.

The reason why I left to run my own practice was that it was too damn painful to stay with them. I didn’t like the fact that I had to see so many people and I had no options for those patients beyond formal insurance-based PT.

I didn’t like the fact that I was working on the tennis tour and players wanted me to go with them to other tournaments overseas, and my boss wouldn’t let me go.

It started to become too painful.

I don’t talk about it much, but I had a nervous breakdown, because of the stress of working for that company and the responsibilities I had with those pro tennis players.

I still remember that day like it was yesterday. That day, I lost it. That day I was there crying and lost my ‘ish. That day, the pain of staying the same was greater than the pain to change.

At that time, I had no money, and I had no major business sense.

But this is what I knew that day. I said to myself, “I am going to lose my marriage. I am going to lose my health.  I am going to lose my mental well-being. And if I don’t jump and do my own thing, it’s going to get really ugly.” I knew that was it.

I wasn’t ready to open up a practice; you are never going to be ready. Click To Tweet

You are never going to be ready to take the SSPT course. You’re never going to be ready to become a consultant. You’re never going to be ready to start a practice.

Is the pain that you are currently going through so bad that the pain to change is less?

People have to crash and burn. That’s the only way that it’s going to work.

The Culmination

Story number two was when I was in Fort Lauderdale getting ready to run my first comeback half marathon, which was the Disney half marathon in 2011.

Seven of us who were going to run the Disney marathon together that weekend. My family and parents were going to drive up to Orlando that weekend to meet my staff for all of us to run the race.  That night about 2 AM in the morning, I woke up sick and I hit my head, and was unconscious. All I know is that the paramedics were over me when I gained consciousness.

I didn’t know what happened. All I knew was that I saw my wife and my mom crying. They were trying to keep the kids in the room.

That day, the pain to stay the same was much more than the pain to change. That day I was willing to change many parts of my life.

Every single thing that you see in Smart Success PT… all of those innovative strategies that most physical therapists aren’t doing, was created from my pain.

That 2 AM moment on a Friday morning in 2011 was the culmination of all the things that I was doing and so many physical therapists throughout the United States are going through that right now.

That was my crash and burn situation that I wanted to tell you about. If those situations never happened, I wouldn’t have learned online fitness.  I wouldn’t have tried Beachbody and other stuff, and I wouldn’t have sat down and started video recording every single thing that we do in our office.

I don’t know what else to tell you, but that story of the dog was my story. And I know it’s many of your stories as well. Many of you are currently in a painful situation.

I would have rather worked 9 am to 5 pm, come home, have a cold one, play with my kids, pet a dog, watch a show with my wife, go to bed, repeat. I wasn’t 22 years old and like, “I am going to be this entrepreneur”

But it was PAINFUL to work for people. It was PAINFUL to do things in the way that I was like, “that’s not right for patients, ” and that’s not the right thing to do. It was PAINFUL. And for me, the only reason why I opened up my own business is that the pain to stay the same was just greater than the pain to change.

That’s why I am hoping that many of you crash and burn… and I say that out of love because I know you can do it.

If you want to do something, you just have had to do it.  Or you don’t have to, but one day your pain is going to hit hard.  But if you want to cry and howl like the dog, go ahead, because at some point you have to get off of those damn nails.