Tanner Clark is an international motivational speaker who has spoken to thousands of high school, middle school, and elementary school students to help them find their One Second of Strength to ditch their digital devices, re-connect in real life, and embrace their self-worth to reclaim their happiness. He has a passion for helping teens and others live their best life by empowering them to live up to their potential. When he's not speaking at schools, Tanner is usually coaching his son's baseball teams and he enjoys fly fishing, golfing, playing the guitar and writing music. Tanner and his wife Dani have been married for 19 years and live in a small mountain town in Utah with their 4 kids and their puppy "Putter".
What inspired you to start helping teens and teaching them about self-worth and self-confidence?
That is a big question. There have been a handful of BIG moments in my life where I felt called and compelled to help teenagers. The teenage years are so critical for long term growth and happiness and I felt that I could help at least one teen find their light in a world that is increasingly dark. Aaaand then I had a teenager and saw first hand the pains, struggles, and impact on life and the need to do my part to help my kids and others navigate through.
How would you explain Aro to someone who doesn’t know it?
Aro fights dopamine with dopamine. Social media and devices are dopamine pumps that keep us tied to the endless scroll. Aro breaks that cycle and rewards you for spending time away from your phone. The first time I left my phone in Aro and walked away I felt free! It's a feeling that I didn't know I was fully craving at the time but now it's a feeling I crave all the time.
I’m happiest when…
I'm creating, progressing, growing, and helping other people (including my family) do the same.
What is the greatest piece of advice you have ever received?
Be careful what you tie your happiness to. During a difficult time in life I was struggling with joy. The reality was that I was tying my happiness to an expectation and projection of my life that was completely out of my control. When it didn't happen I was left with a complete sadness. The advice came and just the right time to help me regain control and tie my happiness to actions and things I could control.
Do you have a moment when you realized your phone was getting in the way of what’s important to you?
I have those moments ALL THE TIME! In fact, the clearer I get about my purpose and pursuit of dreams and goals, the more I feel the weight of time management. That said, there was a specific moment with my daughter that made me realize the importance of putting the phone down and giving my family individual, intentional time every day. One night she got out of bed because her "toe hurt". In that moment (as I was scrolling Instagram), I realized that her toe didn't hurt but that she needed more love. I usually would have given her a quick hug and sent her to bed. That night I threw my phone across the bed and decided to hug her until she let go. She hugged me for 5 minutes! It was the most important 5 minutes of my life.