The WarriorU Podcast
Episode 81 - Craig Ball - From Special Forces to professional public speaker

Episode 81 - Craig Ball - From Special Forces to professional public speaker

January 5, 2020

This week on the WarriorU Podcast Bram talks to professional public speaker and change management professional Craig Ball. Craig discovered his passion for change management while working in Afghanistan with the Australian Army as part of a communications capability uplift for Afghan forces, involving cultural, linguistic and security challenges. Bram and Craig discuss reserve special forces training, public speaking skills, comedians and how they work a room. This one is great for anyone who has to stand in front of a group and talk to a team or present to a crowd.

Episode 80 - Laziness becomes a habit - Bram Connolly

Episode 80 - Laziness becomes a habit - Bram Connolly

December 29, 2019

In this episode of the WarriorU Podcast, in the strange no mans land between Christmas and New Years eve, Bram Connolly reads a chapter of his upcoming leadership book, "Mission Focus" to be released by Allen & Unwin in the second half of 2020.

Laziness becomes a habit is a chapter that seeks to demonstrate that laziness can be a vicious circle and usually results in taking the easy wrong over the hard right. 

What better place to learn the negative impacts of laziness than the jungle or arctic training environment?

Taking the easy option time after time will eventually come around and bite you on the arse. Human nature tries to influence us to save time and effort in the first instance and ignore the possible benefits or potential negative impacts of not doing a job well, or taking the lazy option. Getting away with a lazy option more than once makes you think you can do it again and again. Over time this will become a habit; but you can't let that happen!

WarriorU is here to remind you that "YOU are your most important mission". 



Episode 79 - Ryan Hawk - The Learning Leader

Episode 79 - Ryan Hawk - The Learning Leader

December 23, 2019

This week on The WarriorU Podcast, Bram talks to Ryan Hawk the host of the hugely successful American podcast The Learning Leader Show. Ryan was a professional quarterback in American Football and a VP of sales for a multibillion-dollar company. He’s now a keynote speaker, an author and the  head of Brixey and Meyer’s leadership advisory practice.

This episode is “so good”. It’s really important to understand the genesis of Ryan’s show. He was poised to do a PhD in leadership, but instead he decided to research people that he wanted to learn from. He started to record these in a podcast format.

During this “research” he has discovered a theme of the consistent high performer:

1 – They are very intentional with the people they surround themselves with.

2 – High performers are very thoughtful about their futures and how to get there.

3 – They are really clear about how their actions will take them to there.

Ryan’s podcast has created a network of positivity. His mission is bold “to rid the world of bad leaders” and he has a beautiful definition of leadership too:

Leadership is seeing more in someone else than they see in themselves and then helping them to reach their full potential. Leaders create influence through this process 

Bram and Ryan talk about leadership, resilience, mental toughness, American Football, commitment versus compliance and Ryan’s journey of leadership discovery.

Episode 78 - Ian Prior - The Western Force

Episode 78 - Ian Prior - The Western Force

December 16, 2019

This week on the WarriorU Podcast Bram talks to professional rugby player Ian Prior.

Ian made his Super Rugby debut for the Queensland Reds in Johannesburg in 2011 against the Lions. He moved to Canberra just before the 2012 season where he signed a deal to play with the Brumbies for 2 years.  In 2014, Ian joined the Western Force and after their removal from the Super Rugby competition in the second half of 2017 he played on a short-term contract with English team, the Harlequins, based in the UK.

Ian is now back with the Western Force and acting as their captain in the new and exciting competition that is Global Rapid Rugby

Ian is not only a gifted rugby player, he also holds a Bachelor of exercise and sport science from the University of Queensland (where he was also recognised for his achievements with a Sporting Blue award); and he is currently completing a Masters of Clinical Physiology with Charles Sturt University. Ian and Bram talk about high performance, leadership, rugby, base fitness and exercise physiology.


If you would like to find out about our parent company and the leadership and resilience training and workshops that they offer, please head to the Hindsight Leadership website - 

If you’d like to donate to the podcast, and remember every dollar helps, you can do that through the podcast website

There’s a donation tab at the bottom of the main page and all donations are really appreciated to help keep the show on the road.

If you’re interested in the WarriorU Military Preparation course – this can also be found through the podcast website and just click on the training tab.


Episode 77 - Special Operations - Anthony Plater.

Episode 77 - Special Operations - Anthony Plater.

December 8, 2019

Episode 77 - Special Operations - Anthony Plater.

This week Bram Connolly talks to retired Special Forces Warrant Officer, Anthony Plater. Bram and Anthony served together in the 1st Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment, the 4th Battalion (Commando), the 2nd Commando Regiment and the Special Operations Head Quarters. During the years they served on operations together including Somalia and Timor and they also recount stories from more recent operations in Afghanistan. Anthony is now a Crossfit Coach located in Canberra and an advocate for Veteran health and well being. This conversation, just like their careers, is littered with the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. They recount the characters throughout their careers that had the biggest impacts and influence on them personally and they talk about how Anthony dealt with the effects of PTSD; as a warrior walks one more time into the breach. 

A note from Bram Connolly: This episode is a timely reminder that a career in the Australian Defence Force is temporary and that the most important factor for mental fitness is the strong relationships that we build and maintain. Remember, not everyone is affected the same way in the same circumstance. During this episode we used a sound effect to protect the names of those still serving, or those that may wish to remain below the detection threshold. We have omitted anything that is not available through public discourse or on the internet. Listen to the end for a shout out to the fine soldiers of the 1st Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment - The Big Blue One - our first operational deployment in 1993 will always remain the most special of memories. 

Episode 76 - Jake Matthews - UFC

Episode 76 - Jake Matthews - UFC

November 24, 2019

This week Bram Connolly talks to Jake Matthews, a mixed martial artist who is currently competing in the Welterweight division of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. They discuss the different disciplines that make up MMA, as well as the skills that Jake has incorporated into his own fighting style. 

Jake also shares his thoughts on learning from different fighters from different disciplines and the value of their insights regardless of rank.
He also touches on defeat and how he bounces back after feeling crushed by it.



05:45 Growing up & dissecting disciplines 

24:20 Mental resilience

30:43 Weight divisions & training
39:35 Bouncing back after defeat
44:11 Social media, nutrition & diet

Just a reminder that the Echelon Front Muster is being held in Sydney on the 4th and 5th of December. You can get around $1000 off if you enter the discount code WARRIORU at checkout for

You can register for World of Tanks by following the link in the description or visiting '', and entering in 'WARRIORUWOT' into the redeem code section, to receive three days of premium time, a tank, and much more! 


Episode 75 - Mental Toughness - Gaj Ravichandra

Episode 75 - Mental Toughness - Gaj Ravichandra

November 11, 2019

This week on the WarriorU Podcast Bram Connolly talks to Gaj Ravichandra, an Organisational Psychologist and co-founder of Kompass Consultancy. Gaj works with organisations to enhance talent management initiatives and leadership capability. They discuss mental toughness and resilience and how these influence one's reactions, views, and especially leadership strategies.

Gaj poses lots of interesting questions that are aligned with human optimization, like having a critical mindset, managing strengths and weaknesses, and improving leadership. There is also an entire discussion on regaining control from situations where it seems like there is no control.


(07:13) Resilience & mental toughness

(17:26) Strengths & weaknesses

(24:56) Leadership traits

(34:20) Support and regaining control

(46:32) Personality

(52:32) "Problemtunity"



Episode 74 - Wellness for humans - Coach Joe DiStefano

Episode 74 - Wellness for humans - Coach Joe DiStefano

November 3, 2019

This week Bram's conversation is with Coach Joe DiStefano. For eight years Joe was the Head of Sport and Training at Spartan Race. Joe is now the Founder of RUNGA, which is an experiential lifestyle brand. Joe helps to empower individuals through effective and sustainable practices that fuel health, wellness and performance. His teachings focus on reinforcing mindset shifts that give people the courage and the tools to align their actions with their objectives.

 This conversation is HUMAN OPTIMISATION 101.

 They discuss

  • Training as a circuit breaker for PTSD.
  • Understanding the primary drivers for why we are exercising.
  • Searching and aligning with our life’s purpose.
  • Snowball effects of learning better habits:
    • like drinking more water;
    • consuming no sugar; and
    • not eating fried foods.
  • They discuss the power of learning meditation and self-care.
  • AND…they also talk about making workouts fun, cold water therapy and Joe’s mate, Ben Greenfield – Ben is a personal hero of Bram's and the actual reason he started this podcast

    The WarriorU Podcast is brought to you by World of Tanks.
    You can register for World of Tanks by following the link and entering in WARRIORUWOT into the redeem code section, to receive three days of premium time, a tank, and much more!

    Major Sponsors: Ironside Coffee, Aussie Strength and SORD Australia.

  • Ironside Coffee
  • Aussie Strength
  • SORD Australia
Episode 73 - Warrior Philosophy - E.M. Burlingame

Episode 73 - Warrior Philosophy - E.M. Burlingame

October 28, 2019

This week on the WarriorU Podcast I talk to EM Burlingame.

EM is a fascinating guy; he has trained as a Zen Buddhist, he’s an electrical engineer, has a degree in Strategic Studies and is currently completing a PhD in Computational Science and engineering.

Now consider this....after 911, he rejoined the US Military at 42 years old and did all the courses to qualify as a USSF Green Beret. At forty two!!!! He is now the founder and the CEO of BioCourt which is a traumatic brain care whole of health initiative, and he was a Co-founder previously of a startup called Sanopic - which we will talk a little about in the episode. 

This is primarily a Warrior Philosopher conversation. 

We discuss international relations, the possibility that we are in World War 3, Clausewitz and also the ancient Greek philosophers.

Some of the main topics:

The human condition and war.

Political correctness leading to war as a hard reset back to civility. 

Brain injuries and how that effects strategic decision making. 

PTSD and the difference between that and natural combat wear and tear.

Oestrogen versus testosterone, or -  is it in fact really Alpha versus Beta.

Episode 72 - Ironman - Pete Jacobs

Episode 72 - Ironman - Pete Jacobs

October 21, 2019

This week on the WarriorU Podcast Bram talks to professional triathlete, Pete Jacobs.

Pete is a previous winner of the Iron Man World Championship race in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii winning the event in 2012. This is made all the more remarkable when you hear that he is not only self-coached, but that Pete also lives with a type of chronic fatigue.

Bram and Pete discuss low carbohydrate diets, shifting from low carb to the keto diet and then onto the even more extreme carnivore diet. They also discuss learned patterns and how these effect an athlete’s choices; and in addition to all of this, Pete shares his understanding on what it takes to build mental toughness.

Pete isn’t out there in the wilderness with his views on low carb racing either. As a professional triathlete and 2012 World Champion he has access to many and varied brilliant people within the sport and nutrition communities, Dr Tim Noakes and Dr Phil Maffetone; as examples.

Hey gang, this is a great episode if you're interested in why some foods make you feel the way they do and if you would like to start a journey of dietary self discovery. Warning though - I'm still confused as to my own personal relationship with food. Bram Connolly.