Charlie Hoehn | Keynote Speaker and Author of Play It Away: A Workaholicís Cure for Anxiety| Podcast Content

Charlie HoehnCharlie Hoehn is a keynote speaker and the author of Play It Away: A Workaholicís Cure for Anxiety and Recession Proof Graduates. Previously, he worked for Tim Farris as his director for special projects, helping him edit and launch the Four-Hour body, which sold over a million copies.

Charlie is also the CEO of BookPop! , a company that helps authors market their books.

HSLD: Besides the little background that weíve give about you, could you tell us a little more about yourself?

Charlie: I graduated in 2008 which was the recession and I spent months frustrated- sending my resumes to companies who didnít want me.

Finally, I just started working for free for people whom I thought were doing interesting work- guys like Ramit Sethi of I Will Teach You To Be Rich. Ramit was just getting traction then and I helped him launch his book, which did very well.

I went on to help other authors- from marketing their own books, including Tim Farris.

I got burnt out after that and took some time off and when I wanted to go back to work, I decided to co-found an app startup with my friend Chad Muretta who is the author if App Empire. We did a product launch which went well.

After a few months I decided that I was still burnt out and that I needed to take some more time off. Thatís how I ended up writing Play It Away.

I had written Recession Proof Graduate before that which was about how to get meaningful work and land jobs that you want but I had not managed to strike the work-life balance very well which was why I burnt out.

Now Iím speaking, work on individual projects on my own, consult and help other authors with their own work. For fun I do stand-up comedy and play basketball.

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HSLD: Can you share with us your connection to the military?

Charlie: Iím a speaker for American Dream U. They are an organization that helps veterans transition by teaching them skills so they can become self-starters.

HSLD: Do you have a success quote? What is it?

Charlie: Thereís one that I kept on my bathroom mirror for the last 10 years was from Napolen Hillís Think and Grow Rich. It goes:

I worked for a menialís hire,

Only to learn, dismayed,

That any wage I had asked of Life,

Life would have willingly paid.

HSLD: Can tell us what is one thing that really impacts veterans to take action, based on your talks with them?

Charlie: I just came from speaking from a Montessori school and there are similarities.

If I just stand there and tell people my story that doesnít really work. However, if I flip it and ask them about their story and situation then that gets more of a response.

HSLD: Can you tell us a story of failure? What did you learn from it?

Charlie: I have had so many failures in my life but the one that stands out was when I was working with Tim Farris. I considered it my dream job but I was also burning out.

I was so terrified of quitting. Also, no one around me was encouraging me to go after what I wanted. They all wanted me to stick with it.

There was also a period I went though panic attacks but told no one about it for a year. That was a failure because I didnít want to admit it because it was a shameful things to me. I needed to listen to my body.

I was always trying to keep on going when my body was obviously broken.

HSLD: Tell us how you got the job with Tim Farris

Charlie: I did some work with Ramit and Tucker Max which are friends with him. I was very intentional about wanting to work with Tim.

I knew he usually got hundreds of offers from people who wanted to work with him and for him. I also knew I was probably going to stand out.

So I needed to go through his network and find people that he trusted. I knew that these people had to recommend me to him so I would be considered.

Seth_Godin_in_2009HSLD: Who was that first big name that you got in contact with and how did you get into their good graces?

Charlie: The initial thing that I did was a virtual internship with Seth Godin. It started out with about 200 kids and went on for a summer.

By the end of the summer, everyone had basically dropped out except me and ten other guys.

I got some credibility from that as I could say I had worked with him. After that, I reached out to Ramit and told him about my virtual internship with Seth.

Thatís when I got to work with Ramit and it was a domino effect from there.

HSLD: What was the reason why you felt so burnt out working with Tim Farris? What were those days like and what did you usually have to do on a daily basis?

Charlie: I donít think it had anything to do with Tim. This was an inevitable thing that was going to happen to me because of my personality.

When I first started to work for him, I came from a very wholesome attitude. I wanted to do things that mattered to me but also meet people that would help me raise my game. I also wanted to have fun.

It started out that way and then we achieved major success. I achieved even more success after that.

All of a sudden I became, in my own mind, this badass who was so capable in his job. All of the success went into my head. My job suddenly became more and more, me working in a cafť all by myself, drinking coffee all day, sitting still, barely moving, checking my emails from the moment I woke up, barely sleeping and then binge drinking on the weekends.

I did this for months and months. And I thought this was normal as all of my friends also worked this way. None of us had any work-life balance.

After I while I became extremely anxious and wound up. A ton of it had to do with stimulants but also with the lack of genuine interaction, the lack of sleep and the lack of a healthy lifestyle.

I was working not because it was fun or meaningful. It became all about the money and the status. There was this disconnect and I could not have fun anymore.

HSLD: Weíve come to the end of this so why donít you take a moment and give us an idea as to what your book is all about.

Charlie: Play It Away is the book I wish had existed when I went through the darkest period in my life. I wrote it because it was what could have saved me from an entire 2 years of intense debilitating stress and burnout.

If you have the symptoms that I mentioned or the work life that I described then you may want to check out this book.

If you want a preview of the book, you can google ďCure AnxietyĒ and my name should be among the first ones that pop up.