Episode 35: Bonus Success Episode with Denise Duffield-Thomas

by | Jul 23, 2022


Samantha Leith: Success is a word that so many of us aspire to, yet many of us never actually take the time to work out what it is, let alone do the work to get there. So let’s fix that now.

Hi, I’m Samantha Leith, and welcome to The Samantha Leith Show. This month is all about creating that roadmap that you need and getting the tools required for success. Will it be easy? No. Will it be worth it? Hell to the yes.

Hello, Denise. Welcome to The Samantha Leith Show.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Oh my God, I just found myself here.

Samantha Leith: Fancy that. You just stumbled on out of bed, tumbled into the kitchen, and 9:00 to 5:00 you’re working with me?

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yes. Yeah.

Samantha Leith: Why not?

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Thanks for having me here. I love getting dressed up with you. It’s super fun.

Samantha Leith: Well, I like any excuse to dress up.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: I know you do.

Samantha Leith: Any excuse at all.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: I have to admit, confession, I didn’t get my nails done. I feel really bad about it because you are a celebrity and you always have perfect nails and I felt really bad about it, but …

Samantha Leith: Do you want to know a-

Denise Duffield-Thomas: it is what it is.

Samantha Leith: They’re not quite perfect, but they’re pretty good.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: They look good to me.

Samantha Leith: But I like them. If I go too long, do you know what the tragedy thing with long nails is, is I put holes in my stockings.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: True.

Samantha Leith: They’re like permanent fishnets, holes all up and down the sides.
Now, I want to ask you, because June is all about success for me, and I want to ask you, as you’ve gone on your journey through Money Bootcamp, has your vision or your definition of success changed, or is it still what it was way back yonder when you did the Raw Food Bride Diet?

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Wow. So we-

Samantha Leith: I got the name wrong.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yeah, yeah. So we’ve known each other for probably about 10 years, and that’s when I started my course called Money Bootcamp. I had no idea at the time that it was going to be a 10-year program. It’s literally a 10-year anniversary at the moment.

I have always been driven, first of all, by a desire for freedom for myself. I think it’s okay to have selfish dreams for your business because it has to suit you first before it suits everyone else, because otherwise you’ll quit. Exactly. You’ll lose interest. We’ve seen this in lots of people who have started around the same time as us and they get bored with things. So for me, it was always, I want to be able to have freedom and flexibility. I want to be able to have abundance, to create a good life for me and my family, and I want that flexibility.

Because I did have a bit of a corporate career, but I couldn’t handle the rules. I couldn’t handle the lack of freedom. So success for me is still about freedom, but it’s helping other people create freedom-


Denise Duffield-Thomas: … and empowerment for themselves. So it’s still the same, But I think sometimes … I love money obviously, clearly, but it’s always about freedom for me. The money is great, but freedom, freedom, being able to do what you want to do when you want to do it is the most important thing.

Samantha Leith: The money helps you do that.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: The money does. Sometimes people think I don’t want a big business because I’ll have less freedom, but the money creates structures for even more freedom.

Samantha Leith: Unless you’ve created a business that’s like a job, which let’s face it, so many people do. I myself have done that over the time.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Me, too.

Samantha Leith: I wake up and I’m like, “I’ve got to do this because I’ve got to pay my mortgage.” Or, “I’ve got this dream I want to achieve, but I really don’t want to do what I’m doing.” So then the vision of success goes out the window and, as you said, I get bored and I’m like off in another direction following a mirror ball.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yeah, but you know what? I think sometimes we think, especially as women, if I’m not into this 100% every single day, then I don’t deserve to make money from it. The truth is, every business, every job, is going to have some boring bits, some parts where you feel resistance, but there’s almost this guilt that, well, I can’t make money out of it if sometimes I don’t like it or if sometimes I find it a little bit boring. But it’s that longevity that we’re looking for and always looking to where we can make it more enjoyable for ourselves.

Samantha Leith: Like playing dress up.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yes, babe. Honestly. I think sometimes we lose our creative mojo.

Samantha Leith: Totally, totally.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: I think you and I were both in that place where we met each other and said, “Let’s do something fun together,” because we were stuck in our homes. You were-

Samantha Leith: It’s month three of the 4,000th lockdown.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: It was tax time.

Samantha Leith: Oh, my God!

Denise Duffield-Thomas: I was procrastinating writing a book. I messaged you and said, “Let’s do a money show,” and we’re like, “Oh,


Samantha Leith: And next thing you know, we’re online shopping like mads.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: We had our whole costume … the whole show’s costume in two weeks.

Samantha Leith: Before we’d created the show. But we will.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: We will.

Samantha Leith: We promise.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Well, this is it!

Samantha Leith: We’ve started.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: We started.

Samantha Leith: It’s like losing our virginity.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Exactly.

Samantha Leith: Again.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Exactly.

Samantha Leith: With a friend.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yes, exactly, exactly. But I think that thing of success though is, it does grow and change over time and you have to be okay with that. Your business has to grow with you. It’s okay to renegotiate things. It’s okay to change things up. You’re always looking for less friction, more joy and pleasure.

Samantha Leith: I think one of the things for me was honesty about success rather than thinking, “Oh, that’s what someone else said would be amazing and success, so I must want that because they look really happy.”

I did honestly one day have a vision board, oh this is tragic, with a photo that I’d really badly done before Canva. I’d cut out a picture of my face and done insert picture on a Microsoft Word document with someone else getting out of a private jet with me coming. I didn’t even look like the person, but it had my face. I don’t want a private jet. But I thought, “Oh my God, they look happy. That’s what I should want.” Ding.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Well, I remember about 10 years ago Googling wealthy woman and it was all private jets and it was all models, all wearing bodycon dresses and very high heels on private jets. There was no nuance to what that would look like. But then if you Google wealthy men or rich men, they look all different.

Samantha Leith: You’re right.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yeah.

Samantha Leith: Yeah. Rich women have to be perfect.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Well, yes.

Samantha Leith: Isn’t that shite?

Denise Duffield-Thomas: That’s crap.

Samantha Leith: I’m not perfect. You’re not perfect. Sorry.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: No.

Samantha Leith: Sorry, you’re not perfect.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Oh well, I’m a Virgo. I am kind of perfect. We’re seeing Mary Poppins tonight, practically perfect.

Samantha Leith: Practically perfect in every way.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Exactly. I think so many people think success has to look one way for us to be deserving of putting ourselves out there, deserving of the money. Men just don’t think that same way. Men can be old and young and wealthy. They can wear fancy suits or hoodies and be wealthy. They can be short, tall, thin, fat. They’re allowed to be a lot of different things. They usually have to be white.

Samantha Leith: Yeah, exactly.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: But I think we just think, “Oh, it has to look a certain way.” For me, it wasn’t even a young model. I actually thought of it as being an older woman wearing all white at the country club.

Samantha Leith: Wow! I cannot picture you wearing all white at a country club. Sorry.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Maybe when I’m older.

Samantha Leith: Polo? Polo! You’re on a horse doing polo. Pretty woman moment.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yes. Well, this is cool too, because I’ve actually been called new money before, new money. They meant it as an insult, new money. I just thought, “But I am new money, and I’m okay with that because new money now can look like anybody.”

Samantha Leith: Anything. I hear you saying that, and I’m like, what a compliment because you’ve created something, I’m like, yeah, that would be cool to be called new money.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Fresh.

Samantha Leith: New start. Okay, one more question, success question. I haven’t asked you this, but I’m going to ask you, so I’m going to put you on the spot. I think to be successful, people need a theme song that they can put on, motivate them, get their mojo going. In any of those moments where you’re finding a bit like, “Oh, do I really need to do this today?” is there a song that makes you go, “Yep, I got it”?

Denise Duffield-Thomas: (Singing)

Samantha Leith: Yay, I love it!

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Yeah, totally. That’s been my theme song for a long time. Actually, when I was growing up and I was a dancer, my dance school did a dance to it, and we did it as a cabaret one. My dance teacher was really ahead of her time. I grew up on the central coast, not a particularly wealthy area, not a particularly fabulous area in a lot of ways. So she put us in these sequin outfits and these big feather headdresses. We were at the local Asedford in Wyong, Wyong Asedford, and literally the audience was like, “Oh!” because it was so fabulous.

Samantha Leith: So new.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: It was to Don’t Stop Me Now. Then when I met my husband, the nonprofit that we’re involved in, their theme song was Don’t Stop Me Now.

Samantha Leith: Ah, perfect.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: That has driven me because there’s been times I’ve thought, “Oh, I’m too young,” or, “I’m too old,” or, “I’m too tired,” or whatever. I just think, “Yeah, you can’t stop me.” You literally can’t stop anybody. We live in a time where we have the tools, the technology to support our creative dreams. How freaking cool!

Samantha Leith: To do anything, anything!

Denise Duffield-Thomas: With a phone.

Samantha Leith: Oh my God, I need the new one. I need a new phone.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: But it’s amazing. So I just think nobody can stop us.

Samantha Leith: No.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: So that song drives me a lot.

Samantha Leith: Love it. I change my song every year.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Oh, what is it?

Samantha Leith: [crosstalk] stick to one.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: What is it at the moment?

Samantha Leith: The moment, it’s The Champion. Yep, I really, really, really like it.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Love it.

Samantha Leith: I have it as my ringtone on my phone. Then if people hang out with me a lot, they’re like, “Okay, we’re over the song, Sam.” Or, “You need to put it on do not disturb so people don’t call you because we hear the song all the time.” But I hope it seeps into their brain and then they take the mojo, too.

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Love it.

Samantha Leith: Yep. Thank you!

Denise Duffield-Thomas: Thank you!

Samantha Leith: Thank you so much for watching this week’s episode of The Samantha Leith Show. Don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss any episodes. Grab the worksheets and let a friend, who you know is wanting something more, know about this video. It may be the thing they need right now to help them be extraordinary.


Produced by Rebecca Saunders and Pyrmont Studios

The Champion
Songwriters: Brett James / Christopher Brian Bridges / Carrie Underwood / Christopher Michael Destefano
© Emi April Music Inc., Songs Of Brett, Carrie Okie Music, Cds Words And Music, Music By Daddy Warbucks, Llc,
Music By Daddy Warbucks Llc

Produced by Samantha Leith / Michael Tan
Vocals by Samantha Leith


blond woman in a black sequined jumpsuit singing and dancing on a cabaret stage
If you enjoyed this episode please rate, review, & follow on Apple Podcasts. This helps others to find the podcast and if you’re not following you may miss out on something extraordinary.

You can even do it right now.  Click here and simply scroll down to the bottom, tap ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ and then select ‘Write a Review’.

I’d love to hear what you enjoyed about the episode, so take a screenshot and share it on Instagram. Be sure to tag me on @samanthaleith to let me know!

Join The Club!


Learn more about my Speaking on stage or virtually for you
Find out more about Coaching with me
Book your Complimentary Coffee or Champagne Chat
Grab some Freebies