The Latest Episodes of INSIGHT with Chris Van Vliet
Nov. 10, 2022

The 3 Words John Cena Told Me That Changed My Life

The 3 Words John Cena Told Me That Changed My Life

Chris Van Vliet answers the question "What is the best piece of advice you've received during an interview" and talks about the 3 words that John Cena (@johncena) told him that completely changed his life forever. It's powerful and poignant advice that could change anyone's life. What do you want to hear CVV talk about on the next solo episode? Send him a message on social media or email him at


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One question that I get asked a ton is "what is biggest thing you've learned during one of your interviews" or "what is the best piece of advice you received during an interview" and there's two that really stand out for me. At least for now, I'm sure there will continue to be more.

Learning from The Rock:

The first one is from The Rock. I'm sure you've heard me mention this before so I'll make it brief, but he told me a great story about how sometimes the best things in life are the things that don't happen. It was his goal in life to play in the NFL. He had an amazing college career, tried out for the CFL, and he got cut from the CFL and never made it to the NFL. But that everything lined up to get him to exactly where he is right now, which is one of, if not the biggest star on the planet. He also recently told me a quote that I love so much. "It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice." And Dwayne is a shining example of that. He is one of the kindest people, not just celebrities, but one of the kindest people I've ever met. He always make space for whoever he is talking to. I have learned so much from him to make the person you are interviewing just feel so special. It doesn't take much to make people smile, so always go that extra mile to make someone feel special.

Lessons from John Cena:

And the second was from John Cena. I've interviewed him a bunch of times but the interview we did in 2019 during WrestleMania 35 weekend in New York City was really special. This interview was was all about making time, making space and making someone feel special. If you remember the interview, he just seemed so grounded and so self-reflective of his career, present and future. He said 3 words during that conversation that immediately changed my life:

Control the Controllable.

Far too often we worry about things that we have ZERO control over and we focus our thoughts, our emotions and our time on them. We can't control what happens to us, but we can control how we react to the things that happen to us. there's no point in getting mad about something you have ZERO control over. But what can you do is think about how you can react in this moment. You can choose to get angry, or you can choose to go well that person's actions have nothing to do with my life. That is where you should focus your efforts.

Takeaways from Tony Robbins:

Tony Robbins says "What you focus on is how you feel." If you focus on being angry, how are you going to feel all day, all month or all year? What you can focus on is all the things that happen in your life. Not every day will be perfect, but you do have control over what you have in front of you right now.