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Mentor Lesson #7: Trust Your GUT!

When I was in college, I was a government major. And then I changed to business.

And I was miserable.

It was then I got some of the best advice I’ve ever received.

My sister Patti, the oldest of my 5 sisters, told me something that changed the course of my life.

Patti said, “You need to listen to your gut. What does your intuition say? What do you most love studying? What do you most enjoy?”

I thought about that for a minute and knew that I loved this “Intro to Kinesiology” class I was taking.

But I was already a junior and I was thinking, “It’s probably too late for me to change majors this late in the game.”

And then I started building in more excuses, “If I changed my major to PE/Kinesiology, that’s really going to limit my career choices.” (You gotta remember, there weren’t quite the career options within Kinesiology/Exercise Science as there are today).

And then Patti said something else even more profound:
“Listen to your heart. It rarely leads you wrong. Trust your internal voice and follow your passion. Don’t worry about money and career choices. That will come as a result of you ultimately discovering your true passion and having the courage to blaze your own path… and that all starts with TRUSTING YOUR GUT.”

My sister Patti and I on a family ski trip in Park City, Utah.

That’s it. That’s all I needed to hear.

As a junior at William & Mary (1991), I changed my major to Kinesiology. And I fell in love with it. I found my passion. And my soul was singing.

I ended up getting my degree on time (1993). I took a 5th year and got my PE teacher’s certification as a back-up plan. I went to massage therapy school. I got my personal trainers certification and eventually became a strength & conditioning coach. Eventually, I even earned my Master’s degree in bio-mechanics & sports medicine.

And I just couldn’t get enough learning on this topic. I studied relentlessly. I read every book I could get my hands on. I watched video tapes & DVD’s. I attended live conferences and workshops. And I just kept learning and learning about all that was inside the field of health, fitness, sport, conditioning, nutrition, bodywork, healing, alternative health, and anything related to exercise science, sport psychology, and performance.

And in year 2000, I listened to my gut again. I opened my small 2,000 square foot training studio, Fitness Quest 10, in San Diego, CA. It was scary as hell. I had no clients, no money, and no business plan. I don’t recommend doing that now but I was able to jump-start the business with my passion and knowledge.

But most importantly, it was my gut that told me to do it and I listened.

And since then, a lot of good things have happened. And one of the reasons WHY is because of the lesson I learned from my sister Patti that I still apply today: You gotta trust your gut.

Nowadays, I listen to my gut on a lot of things:

  • Hiring
  • Firing
  • Leadership
  • Communication
  • Expanding the business
  • New opportunities that arise and if I should participate in them or not
  • Strategic growth
  • Financial decisions
  • And the list goes on and on…


1. What major decisions are you making right now?
2. And what does your gut say to do?
3. Now LISTEN & DO IT.

Remember, trust your gut as your intuition rarely leads you wrong.

Become a master at listening to your “gut instincts” and watch how that ultimately allows you to fulfill your purpose and passion in life. And that is IMPACT!

Much love… and much guts!


Would you like to attend my 3.5 Day Mentorship?
My most intensive LIVE strategic business and life program I offer is coming up Oct 2-5th in beautiful San Diego, CA. Meet me, my extraordinary team, and a host of other passionate, fired-up fitness professionals for the best fitness, business, and personal growth experience of your life. Train at the legendary Fitness Quest 10, be a fly on the wall at one of America’s Top 10 Gyms, hear from over 10 other extraordinary fitness leaders that I have personally mentored, and let me guide YOU and facilitate over 15 hours of coaching to help you craft your BEST LIFE.

If your gut is speaking to you on this Mentorship, I promise you, it will not let you down. For all the information on my 3.5 Day Mentorship Program, click here:


Todd Durkin, MA, CSCS, is an internationally-recognized performance trainer, bodyworker, speaker, author, and owner of award-winning gym Fitness Quest 10 in San Diego, CA (one of the Top 10 Gyms in the U.S.). His outstanding team of 38 professionals deliver extraordinary service in personal training, sports performance training, massage/bodywork, Pilates, yoga, physical therapy and chiropractic. Todd is the Lead Training Advisor for Under Armour, regular contributor to Men’s Health, and author of The IMPACT! Body Plan.

Todd is also the President/CEO of Todd Durkin Enterprises where he conducts motivational keynotes/presentations, educational & leadership workshops, he operates a Mastermind Group for dedicated fitness entrepreneurs, and he presents internationally on health, fitness, peak performance, and success in life.

You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @ToddDurkin, his FB Fan page at ToddDurkinFQ10, or sign up for his monthly motivational newsletter at You can get more information on his facility at or

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