Traci Schubert Barrett Flow Over Fear

How HGTV Founder Traci Schubert Barrett Found Significance Beyond Corporate Life

Feeling stuck in your career? In this episode, Adam interviews Traci Schubert Barrett, who – after being a founder of HGTV and turning it into a billion-dollar media empire – began to wonder if there was more to life than just success. Traci shares her story of leaving her executive job at HGTV to pursue a soul-searching journey, discovering her true purpose. She talks about the fear and uncertainty of making such a huge change, and how she now helps others break free from feeling stuck and find clarity and direction for their lives.

Here are some power takeaways from today’s conversation:

  • Staying true to your mission and vision as an entrepreneur
  • The evolution of cable television
  • Traci’s journey to becoming an executive
  • The psychology part of leadership
  • A leap into entrepreneurship
  • The pursuit of significance vs. the pursuit of success
  • Dealing with the anxiety of making changes
  • The Strategic Life Map Academy

Episode Highlights:

[03:05] Staying True to Your Mission and Vision

Staying true to your mission and values is incredibly important for any business or organization. In the interview, Traci discusses how HGTV was able to survive and thrive when many other networks failed because they stayed dedicated to their vision of being a home and garden-focused channel. Even when it was tempting to chase ratings by airing more popular reruns, HGTV resisted and remained committed to its niche. This helped them build trust with viewers who knew what kind of programming to expect. Staying true to your mission also helps provide clarity internally and guides important decisions. It acts as a filter to determine if new opportunities align with your goals. Having a clear mission is especially vital during challenging times – it can unite teams and remind everyone of their shared purpose. 

[19:58] The Psychology Part of Leadership

Psychology provided Traci with important interpersonal skills that enhanced her ability to lead people effectively during a demanding career. The combination of business acumen and psychological training served her well. Getting her Master’s degree in psychology helped her become a better leader at HGTV. It taught her important listening and communication skills. As an executive, people would come to her to vent or seek advice, and psychology helped her understand different emotions and how to guide people. Understanding psychology gave her insights into where emotions were coming from for her employees and how to help them get to a better place. It helped her read rooms better and understand different behaviors and motivations. This was invaluable in managing a high-stress media environment.

The psychology background complemented her business experience. She was able to apply psychological tools and concepts to her leadership approach and management style. It made her a more empathetic leader who could hear people out without always needing to solve problems. She learned the value of listening without judgment.

[30:26] Pursuing Significance vs. Pursuing Success

  • In American culture, success is often defined by metrics like wealth, fame, title, and prestige. However, when people solely focus on these, it can control their lives. Pursuing significance, on the other hand, involves focusing on positive impact, purpose, and unique talents, and using them to serve others. While wealth or titles are not inherently bad, they shouldn’t be the sole basis of one’s identity or self-worth. When Traci left HGTV, she sought to discover her true significance beyond her role and title. Now, she helps others redefine success based on what truly matters – their character, values, and how they can use their gifts to benefit the world. Pursuing significance leads to fulfillment, while success alone often leaves people feeling unfulfilled in the end.

Resources Mentioned:
Instagram: @tracisbarrett (DM Adam Hill and get a discount code for the Strategic Life Map Academy.)
Traci’s Book: What if There’s More?

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