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"I'm going to die on this treadmill..."
Last Updated October 23rd, 2014

This might be weird, but I have a new Social Triggers TV video for you. And it’s about the secret to success.

And it all stems down to this one Will Smith quote…

“If we get on a treadmill together, you’re going to get off first, Or I’m going to die.”

“I’m going to die on this treadmill…”

What separates those who succeed and those who fail? Not just in business, but in life?

Education? Intelligence? Money? The “IT” factor?

No. No. No, and no.

I’m Derek Halpern, the founder of Social Triggers. And I believe the difference between those who fail and those who succeed comes down to ONE little thing…

We’re all capable of it. We all have the ability to do it.

What is it? Keep watching…

When I look back on everything I’ve done, I’ve got a lot of success in my past. Not to toot my own horn or anything.

I wanted to become a professional gamer, and I became one. I literally got paid to play games. All I had to do was win tournaments, and I won them regularly.

I wanted to join a Fortune 100 company, and I was hired by one. Then, I received my first promotion in 6 months when it took most people 2 years.

I wanted to start a business, and I did that. I did it back in 2007 with an entertainment website. And I did it again in March 2011 when I started Social Triggers.

So, one day I was thinking:

Why is that I’ve been able to succeed at almost everything I’ve set my mind to?

The truth is that I’m not necessarily smarter, more talented, or even luckier than most people.

So, what is it?

I know exactly what it is.

And I believe Will Smith said it perfectly when asked in an interview by Tavis Smiley what separates him from others. He said:

“The only thing that I see that is distinctly different about me is I’m not afraid to die on a treadmill. I will not be out worked, period. You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, you might be sexier than me, you might be all of those things. You got it on me in nine categories. But if we get on the treadmill together, there’s two things: you’re getting off first or I’m going to die. It’s really that simple.”

And that’s exactly it.

When I decide I want something, the only thing that’s stopping me from getting it is death.

Nowadays, I notice that people who fail often do so because they simply give up.

The people who succeed are the ones who keep at it. And they keep keeping at it.

That’s why I love this little cartoon about success.

As you notice, it’s not going to be easy.

You’re going to run in circles.

You’re going take steps backwards.

The thing is, you need to just KEEP GOING.

And Conrad Hilton said this best:

“Success seems to be connected with action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they don’t quit.”

And that’s the truth.

It’s not about planning to launch. It’s about launching right now.

It’s not about making something perfect. It’s about making something, and adjusting course.

That’s how I did it.

Back in 2005, I decided I wanted to make money on the web. Before I launched my first mega successful entertainment blog, I launched 2 failure websites.

Before I launched my first mega successful entertainment blog, I launched 2 failure websites. The first was a local party listing for the college I went to. The second was a humor site where I shared funny videos. Both failed miserably.

That those websites failed isn’t the point, though. The point here is that:

When I had an idea for a website, I didn’t think about it for months. I registered my domain name and got it up and running within a few days.

When I decided it failed, I came up with a new idea and got that one up in running within a few days, too.

So, what’s the secret?

You have to be willing to die on the treadmill.

And more important, you have to take FAST action. Don’t think about it. Just go do it.

I talked about this with Adam Braun in a Social Triggers Insider Podcast. When Adam got the idea for Pencils of Promise, he got started by depositing $25 into a bank account.

He just got started.

Now, I want you to take action.

Do you want to start a blog?

Start one right now! I’ve got a link to a step by step tutorial below this video. You can use Bluehost and I’ll get a commission. Amazing.

Do you want to host your first webinar?

Get it on the calendar!

Do you wanted to launch a product?

Start small. Write an ebook and sell it for $30. Create the big in-depth course later. Just get something done this week.

So tell me:

What are you going to do RIGHT now? Leave a comment below this video.

Also, if you’re new here, and you want more tips about psychology, business, marketing, and success, make sure you subscribe to my channel and hop on the email list.

And I’m out.

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67 comments Leave a comment
Kristy Lopez

Great video! Very inspiring! I launched my blog in 2011, I have hundreds of posts, but, I never really thought about it as something that could make me money. I’ve changed my view recently and have updated/upgraded my site to something a little ‘more’. Same topics, but more social networking, more opportunities to subscribe, etc. I’ve also written a recipe book for busy parents. And I’m constantly learning.

Tim Soulo

Great vid, Derek! 🙂

The next one should be about “doubt”… I’m sure you’re just like everyone else and once you decided to commit to doing something, sooner or later some doubts will approach you.. would love your advice on this.. cause right now what I do is simply ignore them and keep moving forward.


What am I going to do right now? I will grab a coffee!

Michael Akinlabi

I believe why many people thinks blogging won’t work for them is due to the constant creativity that it demands. You see blogging isn’t only about working hard, it’s more about being smart. Most niches are already saturated. To succeed, you need to be not only unique, you also need to contribute something from a different perspective.

Today, I’ve seen guys who’ve been in the blogging game for a long time, maybe 3 to 5 years. Then suddenly, a newbie came in and stole the show within 3 months. I have many examples. It’s more about being smarter than competitors.


Every time I “don’t feel like it,” I watch this video and I get back on the horse. Thanks, Derek.

Stephen Brian

Awesome article and useful information and enjoyed your post. Really its very helpful Tips and thanks for share.

Tracy Farnsworth

Nothing like you and Will Smith to add a little professional motivation.

Being a self confessed procrastinator and self saboteur, I’ve made sure my road to success has been more like a wild roller coaster ride and Great Flags.

This year has been all about reorganization and re-prioritizing my efforts. I’m an awful employee so really no other options than to sit down, set the timer and get the money making duties done first and foremost for myself and my clients.

So thanks Derek (and Will) for the inspiration and motivation that sometimes evaporates during the details of drudgery during the day.

Candice DeVille

Derek, every time I see one of your videos I think, “Man this guy gets it!” We have a very similar way of thinking and it is wonderful to hear it expressed the way you do.
I’ve been working for myself since 2008 and am now considered one of Australia’s top bloggers and speakers. And you know what? It’s because I never give up, always adjust and reinvent, and see every failure as an opportunity to create something even more incredible!
After coming up with an idea for a new website in September, it’s all done, designed, half written and I’m now headed across to NYC for my first The Next Web conference. Before I even had the money for flights, I booked tickets to that sucker and can’t wait! 🙂

Fiona McAllister

What I am doing about it right now is learning how to promote the already great content I know I make with blog that converts. I think you have it right. There are two types of dreamers. The wishers who just wish and the doers who take their dreams to reality. Even if they do it stumbling and falling all the way through. Making my blog certainly has been like that.


WOW… This seems like a rant from someone that just finished ‘Atlas Shrugged’ and became transformed by its misconstrued message. But then again… blogging about ‘blogging’ has become so tedious that this should fit right in with people that only blog because blogging can be and easy way to make money.


Hey, Derek.

Good video. I love the Will Smith quote.

I’m curious about a key phrase in there, though: “When I decided they failed…”.

I like how you phrased that, but how do you know the difference between quitting because you decide that something has failed, and plain quitting?

I have a few projects that I suspect that I probably should quit (considering how much time, energy, money they cost, compared to what I get back), but are too stubborn to give up on. How do I tell whether I’m right or wrong to stick with it?



Terrific video Derek,

There is always something new to learn on social triggers 🙂


fail forward fast!


Hey Derek,
I’m a singer/songwriter who will be starting a blog. Although musicians may not be the first group of people a person would think of in terms of who your site is aimed at, I find your blog really inspirational and especially this particular video post. So thank you for this – it was exactly what I needed to hear. I’ve sent the link out to a music marketing forum I participate in because I think alot of people need to hear this.


Awesome reminder. Thanks for sharing this video 🙂

Hadarah Batyah

Love this message. Basically…Don’t Quit! Thanks for motivating us all to keep taking action. Probably would never have finished my blog without ya 😉


I’m going to earn my first million $ in next 12 months 🙂

    Jennie Reid

    Love it!

Brian Matthews

Hi Derek,
As always, inspring and informative. Cheers. I’m off to email a list of builders, interview them and find out what they need and how we can be part of it.


This video is really incredible.. you just breath confidence inside me. Yeah I have been thinking to stop but this the secret behind my failure. With little work and continuity my business and ideas will see the light. Thank you so much for this great video Mr. Derek 🙂



Imma just go through your “start your blog right”-course.
Right now.


That’s why you should never be afraid to give honest and helpful advice. I see so many people holding back because they are afraid if they share their secrets their own business will suffer. That just isn’t the case. You either have hustle or you don’t. You can get all the advice and have a list of exact tools others have used. That won’t do it. It has to come from inside. You have to have the drive.

I keep trying to explain this to others. They call me lucky, give the credit to the tools, etc. Nope sorry, that’s not why. 😉

The Get In Shape Girl

Ive always known that I would have a successful business because NOT having a successful business has truly never been an option for me.


Awesome motivation video Derek, great work,,,you just inspire your readers more and more.

Aurelie Chazal

Today we’re going to discuss our marketing strategy (mostly blogging) and that’s something we’ve been pushing for months. I know it needs to be done but we had external things slowing us down.

Now nothing can stop us anymore and it’s time to put thoughts into action. First by defining a unique voice / subject (and I have your advice in mind to make it a precise topic). Then we need to define a real strategy to get our content out there.

I have always been stubborn and I know that if I have an idea in mind I will try everything to see it come to life. Everytime I had to look for an internship, I chose a field I wanted to get to know and started sending emails to every company I could see myself work for. Everytime I ended up with few offers and was able to choose the one I liked the most.

Arman Assadi

Well done, Derek.

This was a great video to mix in. People come for the information, and they stay for the inspiration. 😉


LOVED THIS! like an adrenaline shot, the seminar idea we’ve been throwing around to inform independent musicians how to market themselves properly and prepare their catalog for consumption, I’m about to gather my notes and intel and make it into a document that I’m going to make into a mini ebook and sell it for cheap! Thank You!


I just sent these to a few people in hope that my advice well be validated. Ive have has a few successes and a few failures. My only wish was that I acted faster. Sometimes what you think you want isn’t what you actually want but you don’t know until you try, so acting faster is the key. Thank you for posting this.
P.S. I enjoyed your meet-up last friday and looking forward to more. Hopefully I can pull you away from certain people next time lol


Hi Derek and everyone,

Great stuff. Certainly gets the mind going. My question is for those who are getting started online, do you see yourself as building an online business or a blogger monetizing your blog? Not sure if that makes a diddly difference to anyone but I wonder if how you ‘label’ yourself makes any difference at all in the mindset. Looking forward to reading your feedback!


Jennie Reid

In Australia we have the Tall Poppy Syndrome. If you dare to stick your head up above the rest, you get it chopped off.

In the past three months I’ve self-published my novel (“Hot Summer’s Knight” – on Amazon) and launched two blogs. I’m finding there are some people I thought were friends who don’t cope with this and can be very negative and hurtful as a result.

I have decided this means I’m succeeding! Bring it on!!!

    Carmen Amato

    Go for it, Jennie! We authors have to stick together.

Carmen Amato

Great advice to fellow authors who are feeling disheartened by the tough marketing environment; I have forwarded it on. I know I can outwrite the treadmill.


Oh man, I remember watching that Will Smith motivational video a long time ago. It was awesome.

Here’s another Will Smith wisdom in it: “Being ‘realistic’ is the most commonly traveled road to mediocrity.” Love that.


The one thing I’m doing today is to ping my facebook followers to see if they’ll help evaluate the content I have for a free course I’m developing.

This weekend, I’ll finally go through e-book I got from your site months ago on getting your first 5000 subscribers!


I think this is my new favorite video 🙂

Pippa Crawley

Thanks SO much, Derek. It’s such a relief to know that there isn’t a special secret and success is available. I’m two months into my new business are you are instrumental in helping me. I woke this morning concerned about progress and decided to keep going and try harder; your video this morning is the most glorious validation and reassurance. Thank-you, thank-you. x


Thank you Derek for giving me a wake-up call! I can do anything I want, I just have to want it more!!! I come from a poor and dysfunctional family but when I got out. I succeeded in everything I wanted and still I doubt myself, always thinking I am not good enough, very annoying. I know the only thing that is holding me back in life is me! You have ignited my fire again! Thank you!

Alan Fayter

Dude! You’ve hit the nail on the head in your usual down-to-earth no bull style.
What will I do today? Finish that course promo pdf and chase the guy who’s designing my book cover.
Thanks Derek


Ha! Which game?


Derek, you are awesome. Gracias

Aljoscha Laschgari

Thank you for reminding me once again: being successful is simply persisting until you have success.


I’m going to do and finish my Preview content this weekend. Get it up and going and putting my product on my “solutions” page.

Shawn Manaher

I’m might be uglier, but I’m on the treadmill!

Awesome Derek! I’m in the process of interviewing 56 entrepreneurs in 56 days to launch a new podcast in January… Feeling the burn!

Thanks for this!

Rev. Kerti

This touches on something I’ve been talking about for a while to friends and family.

I have a chronic health condition that the doctors say is incurable. I won’t go into details, but let’s just say that I have two options. I can accept that and live my life with all these limitations, or I can optimize the crap out of my health as best I can every day to create the best conditions for the health condition to heal.

I don’t directly control whether it heals, but I DO control my mindset and approach to my health. So I’ll heal this or I’ll die trying. And so what if I don’t? What’s the worst that’s going to happen? I spend my life optimizing my health?! Oh no! Not that!

Side note: it’s amazing how many people find it their duty to try to talk me out of trying… because I might experience *gasp* disappointment!

I’m already a big action taker, so I won’t really be changing any of my action steps based on this video, but I will make it to the gym today, even if that means being on the treadmill for only 5 minutes (sometimes that’s all my body can do), because I refuse to NOT show up. And I’ll attend the conference on health and wellness this weekend. And I’ll show up for the 5k on Thanksgiving. Hopefully I’ll be well enough to run it, but if not, I’ll walk.

Cassandra Tondro

This week I am finishing up the PR for my upcoming live painting performance. Next week I am sending out the second e-mail to my mailing list about the event and opening sales of raffle tickets. The following week I will promote the event at several groups, and the week after that is prep for the event itself on November 16th.


The reality is that we’re all going to “die trying” anyway – might as well be for something that we actually want instead of whatever falls into or lap or whatever scratch & dent leftovers nobody else wants.

I’m working on launching a product on Amazon. Will narrow down the product and a supplier by the end of the week.

Queenie Tan

Thanks for the timely message, Derek!

Since I quit my job two years ago and started my own on-line biz, I’ve been constantly pushing myself out of my comfort zone. From being a pre-school teacher, I’ve become a published author, a podcaster (of two channels), an international and regional speaker, a coach and a course creator (of a few on-line courses)……aaannddd I did all this in two years.

I have been pushing forward, learning as much as I can (and as quickly as I could) and trying things which I never thought I’d do (especially in the areas of branding, marketing, copy…..and a gazillion other things)…..I’m still waiting for my big break and am trying to be as intentional and optimistic as I can but some days are harder than others especially when the candle of ‘hope’ gets a bit dim.

However, I have found that just when things get tough, I’ll often stumble on inspirational messages from people like you who’d give me the extra push that I need to get going again.

~THANK YOU~ for doing what you do!


Hi Derek,

My friend forward this to me. I am wondering how to make my blog really works. I have been trying to blog and see the analytics work. And currently, I want to launch a product, but I am stuck in writing it to a shop owner. Please kindly advise. Thank you.

Paul Tomes

Love hearing that phrase and timely for me:

British army officer, own business (failed), studied Clinical Phycology, joined a startup as employee #1, moved to the US (from the UK), senior leader in a publicly traded company, started a business, hospitalized, couldn’t carry on with that business, started another.

Launched this morning.

The only way I won’t succeed is if I don’t do it.

Thank you for the kick in the pants though: I could do more.

Cheers, Paul

Odette Hoffmann

OMG Derek! You have the most perfect timing EVER. It’s 5am-ish in New Zealand and I couldn’t sleep because I was stressing about the crowd-funding campaign I’m going to launch on 1st November about my first self-help book/novel called Star Born. I’d got up to work on it some more. Because the book is important to me and I believe it will change lots of people’s lives for the better, I really want the Kickstarter campaign to be successful. But I was getting bogged down with trying to get the description perfect blah blah blah…
And then you came along in my inbox! 🙂 thank you, thank you, thank you

Raquel English

I’m still not where I want to be, but I will also die trying. I’ve been blogging for 6 years and still barely any subscribers. I don’t care. I went back over your start your blog right again and I also sent out several emails today that I was fearful of sending. I also put my but on the line by signing up to take a life coaching certification course. I have no idea where the money’s coming from but I have to risk big. I think the biggest thing is to wake up every day with the attitude of being present and showing up, even if I’m only showing up for myself right now. That’s what matters… SHOWING UP EVERY STINKING DAY!


Thank you…I’m launching my first ebook by Dec. 10. Thanks for the boost, it means a lot. Aaron

Laura Childs

Excellent inspiration Derek! Kicking my butt to “just get it done”!
I have a new idea rambling around in my brain and scribbled on a few sheets of notebook paper – I need to finish up the ‘funnel plan’ and darn well do the work to move onto launch!

I’m no stranger to dedication and doing the work, but I’m no Will Smith either (with nothing to prove to anyone, the ‘better than you’ competition stuff seems trite). Perhaps I’m missing Will’s point?

As an example, my 20 year old daughter and I decided we needed to lose weight. We worked out similar diet plans and got to it. She lost most of her excess weight in 10 weeks. I took 10 months to hit my goal (more to lose, slower metabolism, worse habits, excuses, excuses, excuses). At the end of the year – we’ve both accomplished our goals. Both dedicated to do it or die trying. Now that we’ve seen what we’re made of, we’ve some new goals – career/work related. What a ride!

Brennen McElhaney

Derek — As always, thank you for the timely kick in the rear. My one thing is to set up an email opt-in incentive on my artist website.

Thomas Bell

Finishing my pitch to get my dream job – thanks for motivation Derek.


I decided at the age of nine that I was going to study at the University of Cambridge. Every day for the next nine years I worked towards it, working harder than my peers and filling my days with enriching activities to improve my chances. Nine years later and I made it.


I’ve found this to be exactly true. I lost 70lbs because I refused to accept not losing it. Most people quit after after a few weeks of trying and not losing weight. “It’s not working. Why bother?”

I spent about 6 months not losing. I refused to quit. I was going to lose that weight even if I had to do drastic things. (Thankfully I got schooled and didn’t have to.) So, I lost that weight. Eventually.

Here’s the thing I’ve noticed; most people don’t truly believe they can reach their goal. They start out saying something like, “I want to….” When what they should be saying is, “I am going to…..”

Without the internalized belief that attaining whatever it is you’re after is 100% possible FOR YOU, quitting too soon is very likely.

Also, I think patience might be in short supply with some of us, especially now a days where everything is instant. I struggle with this for sure. It’s only the things I decide to die for that I seem to not need patience for. Funny how that works. 😉

Dave Jarrold

It comes down to this. If you want what someone else has, you’ve got to be prepared to do what they do. You can’t sign up for training, do a bit and then complain when it doesn’t work. You have to see it through. Looking forward to starting off Blog That Converts on Monday!

Michael Chibuzor

I’m going to tweak my content and make the title catchy and a little bit controversial. I like yours – but please don’t die on that treadmill. Lol!


This was a helpful reminder, just when I needed it. Thank you, Derek!

Steve Daar

I’m going to do 90 minutes of editing for my upcoming book Profit Hacking.

After writing it, hiring an editor, getting the cover designed, & hiring an interior formatter/designer, and creating the website – I’ve had so much resistance to doing the couple hours of work I need to do to help my editor out.

Today – – I will do it.


This week huh? OK, I’m 200% committed to getting my ass in gear and getting the essential oils free e-course that’s been batting around in my head onto the screen.


I love your videos and guides for everything from email marketing to setting up your first blog. Your site was one if the go to references when I first started doing anything online and it still is. Thank you! I’m going to finish writing my mini guides on my site and get my affiliate links going today!

Ryan Stephens

For the people who take this approach, what they learn is that *most* people aren’t willing to keep going when things get hard, when things get uncomfortable, after they start a family and perhaps most of all… once they start getting that bi-weekly or monthly paycheck that they deem “enough.”

What these “top performers” also learn is that it’s perfectly okay that most people settle. Now there’s more room for you to shine. At each hurdle more and more people drop off until there’s only a few left at the top.

And just like homemade vanilla Blue Bell ice cream (you don’t have that in NYC), the people/businesses/products at the top get nearly all of the market share.

Beth Hayden

This video was incredibly helpful to me this morning. My ONE THING today is to edit the confirmation and reminder emails that will go out when people sign up for my automated webinars. I’ve been sitting on that task for a week because I’m actually terrified to do automated webinars — but I gotta get going. Thanks, Derek. 🙂

    Derek Halpern

    Do it 😉



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