Terry Crews — How to Have, Do, and Be All You Want (#287)

“Vulnerability is not weakness.”

– Terry Crews

Terry Crews (@terrycrews) is an actor and former NFL player (Los Angeles Rams, San Diego Chargers, Washington Redskins, and Philadelphia Eagles). His wide-ranging credits include the original viral Old Spice commercials, television series such as The Newsroom, Arrested Development, and Everybody Hates Chris, and films including White Chicks, The Expendables franchise, Bridesmaids, and The Longest Yard.

He now stars on the Golden Globe award-winning Fox sitcom Brooklyn Nine-Nine. In 2014, Terry released his autobiography, Manhood: How to Be a Better Man — or Just Live with One.


You can find the transcript of this episode here. Transcripts of all episodes can be found here.

Terry Crews — How to Have, Do, and Be All You Want

Want to hear a conversation with a mentor from Tribe of Mentors? Listen to this episode with Tim Urban, in which we discuss the future, how to deal with procrastination, AI, and much much more. Listen to it here (stream below or right-click to download):

Managing Procrastination, Predicting the Future, and Finding Happiness - Tim Urban

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QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY: What was your favorite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.

Scroll below for links and show notes…

Selected Links from the Episode

  • Connect with Terry Crews:

Twitter | Instagram | Facebook

Show Notes

  • Terry is as big as he looks on television. [06:13]
  • Terry talks about his art background and growing up in Flint, Michigan. [07:32]
  • Why Terry didn’t stop making art just because he started playing football. [16:26]
  • How a vow helped Terry get through his teenage years. [20:15]
  • Negotiating with life’s everyday terrorists — from childhood to Hollywood. [22:20]
  • Terry is a motivational doer. [27:38]
  • Through the tough times, how has Terry maintained his optimism? [29:35]
  • On dealing with his own bouts of toxic masculinity (with a lot of help from his brutally honest wife). [31:02]
  • A favorite failure. [36:32]
  • How “The Master Key System” by Charles F. Haanel helped guide the course of Terry’s life. [44:09]
  • The consequences of competition on creativity and overall success. [50:26]
  • Terry’s advice to a new or expecting parent. [59:26]
  • Two ways of confronting an abusive father. [1:03:40]
  • Terry reflects on his favorite Emerson quote. [1:12:28]
  • Coping with “imposter syndrome” on his first movie set — with Arnold Schwarzenegger. [1:16:16]
  • What advice would Terry’s time-traveling 95-year-old self give him today? [1:20:06]
  • Lifestyle changes I’ve made since my 40th birthday; changes Terry has made going into his 50th. [1:23:23]
  • Terry’s intermittent fasting schedule. [1:26:35]
  • An interview request and my thoughts on cryptocurrency. [1:29:41]
  • How do we choose who to mentor (and who to let go)? [1:33:18]
  • How does Terry let someone go (and why doesn’t he believe in the traditional Hollywood entourage)? [1:37:04]
  • Advice for introverts who want to be entrepreneurial but dread socializing. [1:42:39]
  • Recommendations for coping with self-induced anxiety. [1:46:21]
  • Terry’s parting words and ask of the audience. [1:50:29]

People Mentioned

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 900 million downloads. It has been selected for "Best of Apple Podcasts" three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it's been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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50 Replies to “Terry Crews — How to Have, Do, and Be All You Want (#287)”

  1. Hi Tim, did you stop posting the podcasts on spotify ? It was my favourite way to listen to your content. But it looks nothing had been uploaded since 7th of December?

    Thanks for reply ! Have a nice holiday!

  2. Awesome interview Tim! We listened with our kids today. I would encourage young people to have a listen. Some real insight into life, and failures and lessons learned. What an interesting guy Terry is.

  3. WOW, this interview is EVERYTHING. My daughter and I watch Brooklyn 99 and love Terry’s character, but after this interview, I realized Terry the man is an amazing human being. Thanks so much @tferriss

  4. Fantastic interview Tim, well done! This one was a gold mine for awesome content, thoroughly enjoyed it! T-Money – what an incredible guy!

  5. I usually don’t like it when my favorite podcasts do live versions of the show, but this was amazing. I particularly liked the audience questions and that BOTH of you answered them. Very interactive and probably allowed you each to think out your answers while bouncing ideas back and forth. I just love the difference you are making in the world. It’s real and it’s big. I just bought 2 of your books and 2 that you recommended.

  6. Tim,

    I’ve been listening to you and have been a fan of yours for years. There have been so many amazing interviews with Arnold, Jamie Fox and Debbie Millman. However, more recent interviews with Ariana Huffington, Mike Maples, and now Terry Crews, have blown me away, so I felt like I needed to comment for the first time. Your interviews just keep getting better and better. It seems that your vulnerability i.e., sharing your fears and personal losses with the public have actually encouraged your guests to share at a deeper level as well. It’s so inspiring and is certainly helping me to stay focused on the positive things in life during a very difficult time. Thank you so much for sharing your gifts. You are doing tremendous good in this world. Namaste.

    1. Hey Michelle, I 100% agree with you, some exchanges were really touching and you could sense both Tim and Terry were sharing some deep fears and feelings with us. You see, your comment made me feel like I needed to comment for the first time so well done! Best wishes overcoming this difficult times in the best way possible.


  7. Tim, in your intro about Terry I can’t believe you didn’t mention his film credits also include being President Camacho in Idiocracy!

  8. Tim,

    I consider myself in the top 1% of your faithful listeners and I have high praise for this episode. I love Terry Crews and I’m happy you were able to connect with him. He had many valuable insights including domestic abuse, underprivileged communities, and he himself (who would’ve thought???) being a polymath. I’m highly impressed. This was one of your best guests. Congrats.

    I shuffle between your podcast, Jocko Willink’s, and Rob Bell. I recommend you reach out to Bell as a guest. He’s a talented, engaging speaker and he ties his real world self help message to scriptures at the end of his episodes which for me as a passively faithful person, make linkages to religion highly palatable. I suggest you give his recent episode on ambition a try. I would love to see you two talk with each other. Rob Bell is actually close friends with Aaron Rodgers as ESPN the magazine uncovered this summer. If you want another great guest, seek out Aaron Rodgers if possible. What a guest they both would be since you haven’t covered these topics too deeply. Suggestion rant over, I think you’re doing excellent and hope this podcasting journey of yours never stops.

    I’m a police officer and keep my mind fresh with your help, its much better than luke bryan on radio station repeats.


  9. Tim-I loved your Terry Crews podcast. He is fascinating and I loved how he “interviewed himself”. I love his and your mindsets of mentally becoming the person you want to be first and then you can actually become it. Your podcast and nuggets of wisdom from yourself and interviewees are always great and your efforts have been a gift for me and many others. Speaking of gifts-your newest book was purchased as gifts for my family. Happy holidays!

  10. 💥Awesome interview with Terry Crews. So many important points made. “See others 1st as people who need to be loved”. “God will not have his work made manifest by cowards- RWE. Terry- fear begets more fear, courage begets more courage. Thank you🙏

  11. “4 Hour Work Week” may have tested better, but “Drug Dealing for Fun and Profit” is literally the best title for a book that I’ve ever heard. I honestly think it would have done just as well in the long run. It’s genius.

  12. Such an amazing podcast the whole way through; I feel almost guilty focusing on just one moment, but here we go. Congratulations, Tim; you’ve had your Cal Fussman moment. When you led Terry to the place where he talked about his showdown with his father and then his reconciliation years later, you were perfect in just listening and let him rivet us. Moments like those are lightning in a bottle, and oh so precious and rare. I can imagine that every member of the audience was sitting on the edge of their chair, just like I was; particularly the men who still had unfinished business with their fathers. I cannot imagine two more perfect individuals than you and Terry being in that moment, at that time, at that place. I’m at a loss for words, so I’ll just say “Thank You”.

  13. Awesome podcast! I laughed a lot and was inspired! I will have to listen a second time to find the quote that most inspired me!

    I would love to know your speaking schedule for 2018 so I can make plans to see you live!


  14. Tim, I never knew Terry had gone to art school. I literally had tears in my eyes listening to him tell his story. I went to art school on the GI Bill studying photography. Similar to Terry using his football scholarship, I used the GI Bill to survive and had to hack my way to getting by classes. I wasn’t playing football on the side, but I had to take care of my wife and kid.

    Listening to Terry talk about having confidence is the tipping point for me. In 2018 I will get my photography back up and running.

    “Now that I’m rich, what would a rich man do?” Man that hit me hard. I’ve been on that concept myself and Terry sinched it tight.

    I honestly didn’t expect this podcast to be so damn motivating. Holy mole Tim, loved it.

  15. Tim, I’m a banker to Health & Wellness companies. Re. L-Theanine, make sure you taking Suntheanine, a branded, high-quality version w/ tons of clinical studies (17?). Supplement manufacturers usu. market Suntheanine on the bottle label so products should be easily searchable. Finally I get to give you a tip! Love the podcasts.

  16. I have listened to almost every episode and this is one of my absolute favorites!

    One minor nit Tim. Multiple episodes you have stated Warren Buffett said toastmasters was his best self investment ever. It was actually the Dale Carnegie program.

    Thanks for the great episode!

  17. Hi Tim,

    I have to agree with most comments that this podcast was really interesting in many ways. From start to finish, you both had a lot of energy and knew how to jump from topic to topic.

    The suggestion I’d give right now is just “keep doing what you’re doing”. Appreciate the work.


  18. Just beyond compare- so much admirtion for both of you. Check out the Talks at Google presentation by Matthew Walker for a life hack that will stagger you- happy 2018!!! Thanks for all you do-

  19. Terry really is a super kind and cool guy.

    However, the Master Key System (aka The Secret, Law of Attraction) is dangerous nonsense in my opinion. Good stuff happens to bad/negative people and bad stuff happens to good/positive people all day. If everyone is 100% responsible for everything in his/hers life, what about cancer, terrible accidents, chronic pain, and war? Do you really want to blame the victims, it‘s all their fault?

    As the buddhist monk Matthieu Ricard already put it: „The universe is not a mail order.“

  20. Starting “48 laws of power” and the biography of

    Leonardo Davinci, both recommended in your

    podcast. Gracias amigo 🇵🇷

  21. Really enjoyed this one Tim, well done! So much great advice – Terry is so open, honest and willing to share his perspective. I could relate to a lot of what he was saying. Really hope there is a part 2, he has too much good advice!

  22. I am very much NOT a sports fan, so I was ready to fast-forward through this episode. But upon immediately hearing that Terry is firstly a visual artist, he grabbed my attention. His natural charisma, there afterward, didn’t let go. Kudos for a fantastic and unexpected interview.

  23. After years listening to your pocast, this is by far my favourite episode. Practical advices, examples on how-to-do, the non-compete stuff… art, sports and film pro telling his truth. Authentic, different, vulnerable… thanks Terry.

  24. I was so impressed by Terry in this interview. I was very moved by the story he told about his father. Powerful stuff. Thank you Tim. And thanks Terry for sharing!

  25. Listened to this episode three times. Thank you so much.

    Is there a video of it somewhere, as it was recorded in front of an audience?

  26. WOW, one of my favorite Interviews ever. Terry Crews is funny, kind, profoundly wise, and straightforward. Thanks Terry and Tim for this moving and inspiring conversation and for your work.

  27. This was an excellent conversation and interview. I listened to just shy of 100 of your podcast episodes last year and this definitely ranks in my top 10. Also, for those that are interested the Malcolm Gladwell book that was mentioned as well as the The Master Key System are both just a couple bucks on Kindle right now! Keep up the great work and thanks!

  28. Tim, this again was another incredible episode. You are truly a master at interviews, you have an ability to bring such truth and value out of people.

    Irrespective of this, your books and your podcasts have changed my life MANY times over. From the first time I read the 4-hour work week (in one sitting staying up until 3am) 10 years ago as an 18 year old, and inspired me to move to South East Asia where I lived for 3 years, to now, moving into another stage of life. Thank you for your contribution to the World, I am deeply grateful for the work you put out and often think, ‘what would Tim do in this situtation’.

    An eternal and raving fan.

  29. Dude! You absolutely nailed this one… Completely pulled me out of my new year’s blues. Big thank you to Terry for sharing his personal story about his father, as well as the development of his relationship with his wife.

  30. hello, coming to your blog for the first time. I really appreciate your content. You are just motivating people and it’s just good to know this. Will look forward to more of your post. I also work in the same niche, but please don’t see me as your competition(‘haha!’), as I can’t maintain these high levels on which you are working. There is more for me, to learn from you and your blog. But yes we will together motivate this world as much as possible and raise them from their failures and make people see the other face of the coin. Thanks and all the best for future.

  31. Been a loooong time fan and reader, Tim, best interview you ever did, brought me to tears twice, so relatable and powerful. Respect.

  32. Hi Tim, I’ve listened to nearly all of your podcasts, I’m a big fan who enjoys your books. I’ve never felt the need to comment,, but your Terry Crews podcast was absolutely fantastic so I want to thank you. My curiosity with Terry’s philosophy is piqued, I would like to hear more from him. Please let me know how to do this.

    Cheers, Bill

  33. What an episode! Thank you so much Tim, and thank you Terry. You have suffered and you have overcome. So powerful a journey. Such emotional growth.

    I have decided that this episode will radically change my life.

    @47.23- “Wait a minute. I’m rich. I’m rich now…. When you do things and you say- Ok, now that I’m rich, what would a rich man do?….and I started doing things that rich people did. And once I did, I had it. HAVE. DO. BE.”

    THANK YOU!!!

  34. I saw this conversation live in LA. Wow. Terry Crews blew my mind. [Moderator: Additional text and link removed.]

  35. Loved this interview, Tim. Many thanks to Terry for sharing and being an inspiration. This is one I believe I will be coming back to a couple times this year.

  36. Listened to sooo many podcasts hosted by you Tim, but this, this was something else. I had no idea who Terry was but based on something you said in another Podcast, I scrawled down and found it. I really don’t know what to say about it, but something, something seems to be sticking. Thank you my man, free podcast, you asked for nothing in return and I hear this…seriously…

  37. Another great episode Tim! I had to keep stopping during my run to text myself tid-bits of inspiration and quotes while listening to this one. An artist! I had no idea. What an amazing guy with a great story to tell.