Why I left Tony Robbins (2023)

Last updated May 13, 2022 -My free marketing newsletter đź‘€

After paying $2,000 for a ticket afterUnleash the inner power…

After the 3 hour flight to California…

After a total commitment, with a fully open heart...

I left Tony Robbins' seminar.

In this post I will share why I went to Tony's event, how it was and why I went. I'll also show you what I did after I left and what I learned from the whole experience.

If you're skeptical of friends who say, "Youterto see Tony Robbins..."

When you're on the fenceUnleash the inner power(US$ 2.000) oudestiny date($ 5.000)...

This article is for you.

If you prefer, watch a video about it:

"But doesn't everyone LOVE the events of Tony Robbins? Are you just a hater?

I know die-hard fans - the self-proclaimed "Kool-Aid-drinking" Cult of Robbins - are already having second thoughts about this article.

"It wasn't this guyreally dedicated. He didn't do the work because he was scared. Now he just wants to pretend he's more enlightened than everyone else."

None of this is true.

BTW - If you hate reading, I'm happy to send you a personal daily productivity checklist:

Here's what you should know about me...

I have a lot of respect for Tony Robbins.I have read (or listened to) several of your books. I am impressed with what he is doing (I recently sharedhow to get 1 million visitors a month) and wanted to experience their training in person. A lot of my friends are big TR fans and they've all been very supportive of UPW.

I'm not "better than you" because I left.I'm not writing this because I'm a cultured aristocrat who turns up my nose at support groups. At many points in my life, I was a total mess. I havewriting about depression and addiction. I wrote about itthe most embarrassing and painful moment of my life(then Ipublished a bookabout this).

I put in the work.I've had a lot of failures and some big successes because I'm always trying new things. Ashow i built an 8 figure business. Or how I intentionally gained 40 pounds in 2015 and then got in the best shape of my life in 2016. It wasn't easy to eat so much or hit the gym every week, but I pushed myself to reach my goals. (You can read more about my goals at2020).

Why I left Tony Robbins (1)

I read hundreds of books andmeasures taken, because I'm 100% trying to get better. (Here are 18 booksthat changed my life). I have also publicly documented my journey to self-improvement over the past 15 YEARS. If that's not "doing your homework", I don't know what is.

I have attended many paid seminars and loved it.Some events that changed my life wereGayle Hendricks Big Leap-EventEDavid Deida's Office. Both lasted three days, 5-8 hours a day. I didn't even think about getting away from both of them. I even hosted my own seminars! Last September, my companyAppSumoHosted our second annual conference with over 200 attendees. I'm surprised that Tony organizes events for10,000 people at once.

Why I left Tony Robbins (2)SumCon 2016

This article is not "driven by fear".I committed to the event for seven hours. The only thing I feared was wasting more time. Also, I believe in helping people overcome their biggest fears - like talking to strangers, rightstart a business. Now I've had time to reflect on that experience.

After all, Tony Robbins is one of my clients.In addition to Appsumo, I run a sister company calledjuice. Tony's team uses our products. Do you really think I'm dumb enough to hit one of my most famous clients? No way. This article was written with love.

Why I left Tony Robbins (3)

In other words…

I don't hate Tony Robbins or people who love their events.

I'm just making a point that few people air publicly:the negative experience.

Most people are hesitant to talk about experiences that make us look stupid. We cut our losses, minimize the bad stuff - especially when it's against the crowd.

Think Vegas.

Hardly anyone says, "I lost $2,000. It was a waste of time and money.”

We always say, “It was fun! Almost balanced. Hashtag IS WORTH IT."

For me UPW was not worth it.

BONUS: Get the checklist for creating your own Personal Development Day

My experience in "Unleash the power within"

In the days leading up to the event, I was nervous. The discomfort was comforting.

I'm heading in the right direction.

The two areas of my life I most wanted to address during the event were:

  1. How to better position myself to have great relationships.
  2. How I create a work environment that continues to motivate and inspire me.

Before the seminar started, I had the opportunity to talk with my neighbors. One of them was a recovering Witness. The other changed jobs in Los Angeles. We had a good discussion about why we were there, what our struggles were, and what we expected from the seminar.

Then Tony took the stage.

Why I left Tony Robbins (4)

Tony's presentation skills were amazing. The guy has been doing this for 30 years so I expected him to be good. He wasExcellent.

Some of the things Tony did really well:

  • ANDencouragedmeet our neighbors and inspire each other.
  • ANDkept the participation super high. He continued by asking everyone to raise their hands and say "I" if they agreed. He also had the audience pronounce many of his phrases ("The truth will make you ____").
  • ANDchallengedus: “I will deliver, but you have to promise to commit. If you sit while dancing, you are under no obligation and you will not get what you came for.
  • He repeated thingsagain and againto accumulate points and increase customer loyalty. He also backed up his claims with statistics.
  • He saidgreat storiesand built with a lot of humor.

Of course, there were some things he DIDN'T do so well...

  • Sometimes he was everywhere. "Let's work on what you're afraid of... Now let's talk about how to get everything you want... Focus, be sincere, do it!"
  • There was a conflict of interest. One day we're talking about health and nutrition... and then he's selling supplements. Tony also mentions his other events and encourages him to sign up for more seminars during UPW.
  • He abandoned his name and constantly bragged. Credibility markers are essential for a presenter to be taken seriously, especially with an audience of 10,000 people. And we all know that Tony has done some amazing things. But the frequency with which he mentioned his relationships with presidents, celebrities and business people was exaggerated.We understand—  You have a private jet.
  • Finally, Tony has the weirdest palms I've ever seen.

Why I left Tony Robbins (5)

For the first few hours of the seminar, we danced (a lot), massaged our neighbors, fanned our neighbors, did aerobics, pumped our fists, watched Tony run around the audience like an idol, and other Ra-Ra tactics.

However, these were minor annoyances. They come to every event. None were a deal breaker.

But as the day wore on, I began to wonder if this seminar would be a good use of my time.

Tony called the people in the front row and gave their names. Which made it seem like he knew everyone in the audience, although I'm pretty sure they were his VIP customers ($75,000 a year).

He called John.

"What's your problem, John?"

John was not loved.

Here is Tony's response:

  1. Everyone in the crowd faces this problem.
  2. John should come up with a new name. "Edward."
  3. "Edward" walked towards her like a Tonydifficult.
  4. Tell Tony you're (basically) on the loose.
  5. Everyone in the audience says "I love you, John".

Problem solved.

Why I left Tony Robbins (6)

Of course, no one expected Tony to solve John's emotional problems with some light drama and applause. The entire sequence was perfunctory (and fun).

Still, John clearly has deeper issues with his family. He wasn't loved enough.


I wanted John and Tony to go deep.

EUwanted to go deep.

I wanted to do the hard work we had to do.

So we had to massage our neighbors. Again.

Okay, I get that we need to get over social discomfort and fuel up, but I don't like random guys touching me.

hour 7…

I looked at the schedule for the next three days.

nutrition. Interesting.

Then tack.

For two days.

I looked back at my notes.

Why I left Tony Robbins (7)

Of course, there were some great topics like...

Make time each week to work on yourself. Think about growing and progressing.

What are you afraid of now? How can you move towards that? Discomfort is your growth!

Success without achievement is the ultimate failure.

Look at things with appreciation and gratitude. Instead of complaining about traffic, appreciate the fact that we have cars that get us places faster.

Modeling is valuable. Study and replicate the people who have already figured out what you want to do.

What is the goal that excites you? Which goal would really excite you right away?

What distractions are keeping you from reaching your goals? remove them

These areyour quotesI became Instagram memes.

Why I left Tony Robbins (8)"No increase in comfort."

Why I left Tony Robbins (9)"Success is how much uncertainty you can handle."

Why I left Tony Robbins (10)"Your worst day can be your best day"

Why I left Tony Robbins (11)"Complexity is the enemy of execution."

Why I left Tony Robbins (12)"Be hungry, which is insatiable and ever-expanding."

It finally dawned on me.temer.

I was officially dreading the rest of the seminar.

Staying three full days felt more like a self-imposed prison than an opportunity to truly grow.

I thought about what I wanted to make the most of my time and whether this event would be the best use of it. I decided that it would be best for me to work on my specific issues one-on-one with a friend.

So I left.

Was I embarrassed? Yes.

I was disappointed Yes.

But what I really felt, more than anything...


Empowered to make decisions about what I want and to refuse things I don't want.

What did I do after I left

Instead of flying home, I planned one"Personal Development Day." Here's what I did the next day:

  • drank coffee
  • I took a 3 hour walk to talk to a friend about personal and professional growth
  • 90-minute personal development session (videotaped)
  • ate a healthy lunch
  • I checked out some of Tony's other stuff
  • Read a book
  • 60-minute discussion with my mastermind group, where I shared some of my biggest issues
  • got a massage
  • jantar de sushi

Get my Personal Development Day checklist

That was perhaps the best thing about Tony's personal development seminar - it forced me to create my own.

final thoughts

Tony has high intentions, a strong presence and it's clear that most attendees feel the event is worth the investment. I'm in the minority that asked for a refund.

A quick Google search shows his net worth in the hundreds of millions. Thankfully, my refund request didn't break the bank.

For many of its participants, there seem to be deep issues with a lack of love and the belief that they are not enough.

If you struggle with these questions, Tony's seminars could change your life.

For a few days you will feel loved.

For a few days, you'll feel like you've had enough.

It's exciting, and many attendees (understandably) come back to learn more.

For my friends, the seminar was extremely positive and deeply moving. To me, it felt shallow and corny.

I have no plans to attend another Tony Robbins event. But I would if his team made some big changes:

  1. More time to talk with the people around us.The most valuable moment for me was when we shared our lives together. We all participate for personal development and we all face similar challenges. It was great sharing common ground and I wish there was more time.
  2. Cut the seminar down to just ONE day.Less dancing, less fanfare, less fluff... Just cut to the chase. We wouldn't need to be “awakened” every 20 minutes if the event didn't last that long. (On the other hand, it may have been prolonged to give the impression that we got our money's worth.)
  3. Focus.The seminar felt very generic. I know it's impossible to prepare an event for 10,000 people, but more specific topics would have helped.

My good friend Tynan put it best:

"If you never give up, you're probably not trying enough new things."

I do not regret attending Tony's seminar.

I don't regret leaving either.

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