Leukemia survivor & speaker coach, George P. Kansas, will share his experience to support himself and his clients to bring themselves closer to their true nature, heal their limiting wounds, and bring their fullest expression into the world without ego or apology.
- Think and Grow Rich
Quotable QuotesYou and I have never met, but I've stood before you and delivered this speech 10,000 times. Click To Tweet Emotion for instance is energy and it's really the energy of information. it may not always be accurate information, but it's information nonetheless. Emotion, unexpressed will express itself somehow. Click To Tweet Don't fake it till you make it, feel it to reveal it. Click To Tweet Bridge the gap between fear and hope and meditating; put conditions into place that support that highest vision. Click To Tweet Part of dealing with fear is recognizing that it's there. Another part of it is doing what you can, Fear is not who you are. It won't last forever and you're not alone. Click To Tweet The more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in battle. Click To Tweet Your life experience has medicine for the planet. Trust that somehow your experience is meant to help or serve someone else. Click To Tweet It's important to remember breadcrumb or no breadcrumb, that impulse to do that thing, to follow that, to say that word, to serve that purpose, to share that message is there for a reason, even when we don't know why. Click To Tweet The distinction that we teach is not just knowing your why, but knowing why you. Click To Tweet Love is always looking for itself. And so even in conflict, it's love trying to find its way back to itself through the other person. Click To Tweet My definition of wealth is the inverse of regret. Click To Tweet If your definition of success is the chase. As long as you're chasing everything is great, but the moment you stop chasing, life will be empty again. Click To Tweet
Full Episode Transcript
welcome to noble warrior. This is a place where entrepreneurs talks about what it takes to create a purpose driven life. We're going to talk about mindset, mental models, actionable tactics, such that you can go out and create your own purpose driven life.
My name is CK LN, former PhD researcher from UCLA. I've been a director of a university of California. I've been a startup executive. I've been a executive coach. I'm on a quest to create a life of purpose and meaning and joy and fulfillment. My next guest is a leukemia. Survivor is an author. He's a coach.
just been through the. the ups and downs of life. And I'm so pleased to have George kansas was this. Thank you so much for being here, George.
Thank you CK. It's great to be here. I'm really enjoying I'm enjoying this.
why don't we actually jump right into it?
You've been a Leukemia survivor.
You been speaking to groups of cancer survivors everywhere. Your role is to help them find new meanings and new purpose, new light. Having gone through or having faced rather. Death or the possibility of death. So I'm curious to know there's probably a parallel lessons that you can share with us. giving the COVID situation is going on.
People are looking at their businesses, need reinventing themselves, need to watch out for their physical safety need to look at, reload, safety, right? Given the social distancing and staying at home. So I'm curious to know if you can tell us what have you learned. Having gone through leukemia twice, what you can share with them.
Great question. Thank you, CK. what's important. I would say as a context was that some of the things that I learned as a result of the healing experiences. we're as much affirmations of ways I had approached life long before, any diagnosis of illness. and why that's important is because I had worked with athletes and C level executives before I ever was sick and essentially teaching them the same thing.
the same things and what was really potent for me is the healing experiences affirmed for me that these philosophies, these ways of being these Axiom that I was living by were on the right track. And, while I probably. I may have preferred not to have such dramatic affirmations. they were potent nonetheless, and how they're relevant to right now, for instance, one of the, one of the things I always lived by was the universe always puts me exactly where I need to be.
That's just something I always used to say, meaning that would force me no matter what it felt or look like that belief, that philosophy always forced me to look at whatever situation I was in as an opportunity to find more of me. So even if it felt like, this is horrible. But if I know that the universe puts me exactly where I need to be, then I know that my purpose is meant to be served here.
Somehow, just as an example, with the hospital example, I was diagnosed with leukemia. I was diagnosed at a stage of the disease where. In my, the entirety of my bone marrow had been consumed by cancer. So literally I had no bone marrow where bone marrow is supposed to be. And I remember my sister at the time, it was about five days into the hospital, five out of 28 day stay where my sister was like, why is this happening to you?
You just started a charity. You're doing all this good work you're working with really important people, blah, blah, blah, blah. And really. That's sad for me and not understanding why this was. And I reached into that belief that knowing of mine, that if the universe puts me exactly where I need to be, why am I here?
And I, without even hesitating, I said to her, Because I can give this experience a voice I've been speaking professionally. I've been traveling around the world, have been writing books. I can create something from this experience that absolutely, that actually helps people. and that sense of purpose just.
From that place. I brought a different version of myself, like a really purposeful version of myself to my healing. I brought my meditation into the hospital. I set up an altar. I did all of my practices right there. I brought every resource, my, of my conscious, my spiritual and my physical, every resources I could bring to bear on that purpose.
And knowing and having a knowing in me that I would tell this story someday made. Made a huge difference. I remember one time, three o'clock. I was all immunocompromised. I had no immune system. I had no white, healthy, white blood cells in my system, so I couldn't touch anybody. I couldn't come into contact with anybody what's going on now.
But one night. Three o'clock in the morning. I'm wheeling myself through the hospital, corridors, masks, gloves, whole PBE outfit, my chemotherapy pole in one hand in my blood transfusion pole and the other wheeling through the hospital. And I rounded a corner and I almost collided with one of the interns charged with my care.
And she's like mr. Kansas, what are you doing out of your room? I said, I'm I was going stir crazy in my room. I had to get out and get some exercise. see the parallels to what's going on now. And she says, I have to tell you are one of the healthiest people in this hospital. Now, mind you, I had no bone marrow.
I was really in trouble. My whole body's consumed with cancer, but she could tell underneath my mask that I was smiling. And she said, why are you always so happy? And I said,
not why but how
this is going to make a great speech someday. And she was just blown away. that was my perspective. And that was authentic. Like I really was. I CK. did you ever read the book by Viktor Frankl? Man's search for meaning yeah. Beautiful book. Yeah. And I remember hearing a mentor of mine and just a beautiful human being.
A Zig Ziglar told the story of how Victor Frankl, when he was giving a graduation speech. Said to the graduates I had. I have you and I have never met, but I've stood before you and delivered this speech 10,000 times and Victor Frankel reflected later on that vision, that image of him sharing this wisdom while he was in the concentration camps of Auschwitz, Nazi, Germany. She, he said that the vision of him teaching what he was learning from that experience kept him alive. That was his purpose. And I remember that so vividly. And I remember remembering that in the hospital and thinking, why else would this be happening to me of the people whose ear I have, that the leaders who I coach and the thought leaders and the conversation leaders that I influence.
That's why this is happening to me. And yeah. I just believe that.
Yeah. What a beautiful story.
it's easy to teach theories and wisdom while everything's going great. when you are in hawaii, everything's sunny and there's waiters giving you maitais, whatever drink that you love you with your significant other, on the Sandy beach, it's really easy to preach about resilience and adversity and grit.
But when you're in the middle of the hurricane, as you did, you literally were facing, compromised immune system. It's probably very painful. Every step of the way you had to will yourself, into taking the next step. That's the true Testament of your faith, right?
so you had an image in your mind that, Hey, everything I'm doing going through right now is for a reason, and I'm going to make a speech one day. So that's a concrete vision that you had on nonetheless. How did you deal with the doubt? The, what if I don't make it the, Oh my God, this is so painful.
Please just let it end, just. Whatever the neurotic thoughts that's going on your mind. And I asked this question not specifically to you, but for the people who are listening or watching this right now, who may be thinking like, Oh my God, it's so painful. my spouse now we're finding at home this week and see anyone else in my businesses.
whatever 40% of my revenue is gone because of COVID or, my physical safety I'm concerned from my parents are old and they, they're also getting stir crazy as well. During those moments of test, how were you able to qualm the internal chaos. And you continue to see that vision that you know, that you, and you want it to turn into a speech that inspires people, give them hope.
You know what I mean?
Yeah, I love the questions. the, this is so important, this question, because, a lot of there may have been a time when a younger version of me would have said something like, just hold on to that picture of, that good picture, that picture of the future that you're holding and just hold onto it no matter what thought comes up and just, that you may have heard the expression, fake it till you make it.
And there may have been a time when I would have said yes, fake it till you make it, just hold on and plow through. And what I've learned is what my wife and I, Tracy, we worked together and in our work, we say don't fake it till you make it, feel it to reveal it. And why we say that is because.
pretending that those feelings, that fear, that doubt, that disillusionment, that frustration, that anger, pretending that those emotions aren't there, in my belief is that actually doesn't help that it actually holds us back. there's great freedom in recognizing the doubt, not indulging it, not going down the rabbit hole, but just recognizing that doubt.
And if I just take a breath and really drop in. and immediately I can go to that place and feel in my body, the fear or the anxiety or the doubt and what if it doesn't turn out? what if COVID lasts another 18 months? And what if, and of course we could totally go down that rabbit hole gets so depressed and just hide under the bed.
We can do that. But what I think, just recognizing that. the fear or the doubt or whatever, is there without pretending that it's not allows us then to say, okay, I know that's there. what can I do? and when we focus, even if it's a tiny little bit on what we can do, even if it's just, Oh, okay.
And For the worst case scenario was I might die. And for a couple of weeks there, I pretty much went to bed every night. Certain I wasn't going to wake up the next morning. And so what I would do is, okay, I'm going to take an hour and just do everything I could do in that hour.
As long as I could stay awake or keep my focus or the energy on it and prepare for that eventuality, I had already created a will. I had already made the arrangements, had already been made for my children. I wasn't anxious about that, but that often, I've talked to tens of thousands of cancer patients.
That's often a big. Anxiety for them, but it's really an anxiety for everybody. What do we do in the worst case scenario? Do you have those things in place? And if you don't, that will draw emotional energy on you, even if you're not paying attention to it, it'll nudge in the background of your mind. so what I started to do in the hospital, what I could do was I could start writing that next book.
And I started writing a book about death and cancer and survivorship and hope. And I started writing about bridging the gap between fear and hope and meditating, putting conditions into place that support that highest vision and. So if I only had 15 minutes where I could stay awake with enough energy, I would focus that on writing.
I would take myself through the same process that I probably taken thousands of people through before I call it emotional archeology. It's basically a step-by-step process to get to really dial in on the most important stuff. And what I think is relevant to people now in the, in our situation is we might be limited to what we actually can do.
For instance, my wife and I ordinarily will host live events. we can't host live events in a hotel ballroom anymore. But we can do virtual gatherings on whatever platform lets us look at each other. And We made the shift and started gathering with people online and virtually. so that's one thing we can do.
We can keep doing the work to keep our, to keep on top of our game. as another thing we can do, we can continue to network in other ways, telephone, email, social media, et cetera. We can do the work. So that we don't let the negatives crawl in there and, have fear take over too much of our attention.
And so there's this idea of dealing with fear. Part of it is recognizing that it's there. Another part of it is doing what you can, Another part of it is like I have this, I work with clients. I say, It's not who you are, the fear, the emotion, the anger, whatever it is. It's not who you are. It won't last forever and you're not alone.
So those three steps always have helped me like, okay, even if I'm in terror, I know that the terror won't last forever. I'm in that moment, Oh my God, I could die. I could die. I could die. I could die and have that terror possess my body, but I know it won't last forever. Even if I stayed in it.
Eventually it would Peter out won't last forever. It won't last forever. And then, that I know that's not me. It's not who I am. It's an emotion running through my body. It's energy running through my nervous system. My nervous system is doing its job feeling. We can talk about that later.
and then I'm not alone. No. Ultimately I was alone in my hospital room, but I knew I had family members who loved me. I had my children who cared about me. I knew that I had a community that cared about me and we got letters and emails and newspaper articles written about it. I knew that there were a lot of people praying for me and holding the intention of my wellbeing, but ultimately if none of that was there.
I always knew the truth, as I have come to understand it, of my self, as a spiritual being was infinitely connected to every other being in the universe. And in that regard, I'm never alone. And so it won't last forever. It's not who I am and I'm not alone actually feels true for me.
Yeah. yeah. Does that answer your question?
I mean that two minutes could be a whole, webinars.
Okay. It hasn't been
right. so let me recreate what you just said. So yes, hold that vision, but don't grasp it and also, so feel whatever emotions that comes up, Let it flow through you. Cause they're real, but not true.
They're just temporary States. That's flowing through you right now. Yeah, said, and from that place, focus on your own sphere of influence, take micro steps towards it, whether it be, set up the environment properly, whether it be taking micro steps towards realizing that vision, which is what your day you started writing the book, Letting that experience the wisdom flow through you during that time. So then when you get out whatever manuscript that you produce could be useful for others.
I hear that. And also the third thing is also remember that you're not by yourself. This is temporary. You're not doing this by yourself and the grander scheme of things.
You're here for a reason. Did I capture the main points?
Yeah, absolutely beautifully said. Yup.
I really liked that taking micro step part, because, and then I'll share this with actually two parts I want to highlight. One is during my younger days. my name literally means strong will in Chinese.
So during my younger days, I will, my way through any internal resistance or external resistance. And because I thought that's how we're supposed to do masculine intentionality. thy will be true kind of approach to life.
And I will actually suppress any kind of negative thoughts or emotion that comes up.
And after a little while I came to realize a few different realizations, one suppressing emotions and thoughts eventually will come up. they may come up with disease. They may come up with neuroses. They may come up with, depression or whatever it may be. It's like trying to push down a beach ball into the ocean.
When I let go, it's going to pop back up somewhere somehow. One if I don't deal with it, the second thing is a more productive way to integrate it, to resolve. It actually is. As you said to feel it completely. Once it's acknowledged and it disappears just like the waves of the ocean washed over me.
So I'm all about efficacy. So I was like, Oh, okay. Suppression doesn't work, denial doesn't work integration works a whole lot better. let's use that approach. So that's my new approach to really feeling at integrating all of my thoughts, emotional and sensation that's coming up.
I love it.
I love that. And what, I love your focus on efficacy, because if emotion for instance is energy and it's really the energy of information, it's, it may not always be accurate information, but it's information. Nonetheless, it's our bodies or our nervous systems trying to tell our mind something. And so if it's suppressed, it's going to find a way to express itself. In my experience, if emotion, unexpressed will express itself somehow, and the smart folks figure out a way to express it constructively and intentionally rather than be subject to it. and there's a piece there about, Knowing that if I let that information and energy flow through me and it's here to teach me something, if I attend to it, there could be real gifts in that.
And it could be attending to, it could simply mean just acknowledging. Oh, Like I have an itch acknowledging it could just be scratch the itch. It could be, Oh, I didn't file my taxes and the attending to, it could just mean sending an email to the accountant and saying, Hey, are we on track to file the taxes?
The emotion, the energy is gone. Once it's out of our body, our nervous system has more resources to attend to what's actually present, which is actually. What we're here for, right? You and I can serve our greatest purpose by being present. If we're worried about tomorrow, we can't be present to serve our purpose.
If we're guilty about a resentful about yesterday, we can't be present to serve our purpose. And Tending to these emotions. Like I really believe that they're when they teach us and what we're willing to take note of what they're here to teach us to just attend to them, put them on a list, or actually get it done and out of the way, and then huge amounts of energy are freed up to be more present, to be more of service, to speak our truth, to serve our purpose, to speak our message, whatever. The case may be.
Yeah. So we can look at what we're talking about here, by the way, guys, if you're watching this, you can look at it from a psycho spiritual point of view, which is how we are talking about it right now. But you can also look at it from just pure, a functionality point of view.
If you think about. Your, your creativity, your physical energy, your emotionality as fuel tanks, right? my friend Nick Sullivan, one of the previous guests calls it the boosters of your rocket. If you think about how can you utilize the most fuel in your rocket? Then you say, all right, so the anxious, angry, resentment, all those are taking away from actually you having the full usage of the fuel in your booster.
So look at it from that point of view, that's still very useful. If you want to have the most utility of everything that you've got, the, your mind, the body, the heart and spirit, what we're talking about here, it's a couple of things. One is. To have a clean, shall we say container right of your emotionality, physicality mentality and spirituality such you can have for usage of it.
And how can you be present in this moment? So you can actually see. The reality, subjective and objective reality. So you can actually see all the chess pieces on the board. And so you can be the most utilitarian based or whatever it is that you want.
Absolutely. And just a real practical example of that.
Back in a day, we worked, with, the NFL and the NFL players association was working with this one professional football player who, To look at these athletes, these brilliant specimens of physicality and athletic performance, you would just assume the invulnerability that they present on the field.
And I had the great honor to really get inside with these guys and to see how the oddest little thing, would affect their physical performance. For instance, if a linebacker was concerned about, pain in his knee, and he indulged that concern even the tiniest bit, not ignore that it was there, but rather tend to it like, okay, get checked out.
If the doctor says it's okay, the x-rays all of this, then we have to address the thing. That has you anxious about that? Because if you don't, it will absolutely impact your performance on game day. And w so that's a sort of an obvious example. I tend to the physical need, do some extra PT, or make sure you do what you need to do to resolve that anxiety in your mind.
The other examples of, what about if I get hurt and I want my family taken care of. Totally different thing. The doctor's not going to take care of that for you. So it sit down and make sure that those things got addressed. Make sure the trust fund is set up and that money gets swept into that account on a regular basis so that when you step foot on the field, you're not thinking about your family.
You're thinking about your purpose of being on that field and the difference between, an athlete. who you'd look at and say that guy could run right through that brick wall and leave a football player shape and a hole in the law. And if he's anxious about his family, his performance is going to be diminished, even if it's a tiny bit and in a football game, an inch could mean losing the game or winning the game.
And really tending to those things. That's why I say this emotion is information. And if we take that information and act on it, then we often do take huge steps to reduce the impact of that emotion. And so acting on it could look like getting checked out, acting on. It could look like talking to your lawyer and putting things in motion, acting on.
It could be. Getting that project done, for instance, how many people do you know whose garage is a mess for instance, and they can't park their car in a garage . And in a way, every day they get in their car, subconsciously, they might be saying, boy, I wish I could park my car in the garage.
And as long as that mess exists in the garage, their subconscious mind is using energy to address that somehow. But if you clean out the garage, it's gone. Yeah. That makes sense. Yeah,
completely. one of my favorite books is Marie Kondo's the magic of tidying up. Yes. It's very deceptive in a way that it's talking about decluttering, but really is teaching beautiful wisdom principles. Yes. on the substance part. And I really love it because it actually gave me methodologies to, I thought I was a minimalist until I read that, Oh, she is a minimalist. That's
So at the same, but what you just described is actually perfect because we all have different clutters in the mind, the body, the heart and spirit.
And then if we can, the more we can clear up. The clutter, the more space, the more resource, the more room we'll get to create in the mind body, in the heart and spirit.
Doesn't that explain the wild popularity of those shows that show us how, hoarders. Yeah, it's, for one, people do derive some sense of satisfaction to know that well, their situation isn't as bad as it could be.
But there's also as compelling, draw toward the, that the hope that we could change it.
yeah. So I'm curious, as a facilitator, how are you able to, you get the athletes to share with you their own internal garage? Cause they may share, Hey, my knee hurts, but how did you get even deeper than that?
Are there other clutters around the pain in the knees so that you can really help them like, Oh, okay. Clean that up. Address, the will or the trust and the, at these types of things, normal people don't tell others about.
I love the question, because what I love about the question is whether it's a football player or a hockey player, or a rock musician or a C-level executive, or, a healer in transition from one business to another or whatever, the issues are very similar and that is around vulnerability because once a person is shown, and this is, I've committed three decades of my life to really, how it is to create a safe space for someone who is desiring change to actually, submit if you will, to the process of change.
And that first step is it for them. Anybody desiring change is to render themselves open to the process of changing. And most people right off the street would be uncomfortable and not really feel safe to do that. And so one of, one of
even before that is first recognizing, Hey, I have a problem.
I'm assuming so great. That's such a brilliant point. The problem, like in the, for the athlete, for instance, it's pretty clear. The problem is evident by a diminishment in performance. And if an athletes revenue is incumbent upon maximum performance. They're generally going to be pretty clear about, I need to change this.
I need to change this because I'm afraid I need to change this because if I get hurt, I'm toast, I need to change this because I'm a, I'm a starter and I want to stay a starter because it means a difference, like on a number of zeros on my paycheck, And so the. I assumed if they come into my field, there's an opening to change.
Now that's partly me just being the stand. I am in the world for people to be their fullest selves. And partly Hey, if you're in my field, Metaphysically or spiritually, if you're in my field, I know that somewhere inside you is a version of you committed to making these changes. And so I'm going to presume that and work with you.
And especially if they come to it at an event, or they've been referred as a client, for instance, then I presume that, but we'll flesh that out in an introductory conversation. With a very direct question. How committed are you to making these changes? and if they are then the key is.
Help them recognize that I'm on their team, I'm in their corner, and they're different conversations. We'll have to set that stage what Tracy and I call our container and we create a container of confidentiality. For instance, nobody, nobody in the planet, in the history of my life, booze who my other clients are, unless my clients have told them.
You know what I mean? They'll never hear it from me unless I have explicit permission to say, this person said that, and that comes from my experience 20 years as a corporate lawyer, I keep secrets for a living. I do that pretty well. so that right there feels is a big step towards creating that safety.
Like I know just a doctor or a therapist or, making a confession to a priest or something where you do that because you trust it will stay there. And so once, once a person wants to change, trust that their process is safe with me, meaning anything, they reveal anything they share, won't be used to embarrass them or anything.
And that the more I know, the more I actually can help them. And that often. we're usually able to establish that type of rapport and that level of rapport with someone very quickly, again, mostly because all of our clients have come to us from other clients or from interviews like this, where they get a sense, Hey, I'm here.
I actually care. I do this because it's my purpose. and so they come with a degree of openness and a willingness to see, Hey, Once they're open to the idea that I could help them or that we could help them. Then it's a question of is this is the chemistry, right? Is they, is our rapport the right fit for the kind of change they want to make.
Yeah. I like that.
Yeah, no, it's really beautiful for anyone. So I was Googling around as a way to do research for our conversation. And w in just a few minutes, just watch any of your content. you, I felt right away there for whoever that's standing in front of you, that you're here to inject the love that compassionate empathy as a way to support them, anyone to fulfill their goals.
So was that always there or is that cultivated over time as a, or were you like this way when you were a lawyer, we put it that way. That's a great
question. I would like, that's a good question. I would like to say that I was that way as a lawyer. I know that, for instance, when I was a young right out of law school, it started off in a boutique corporate firm doing big bank.
Like one bank would buy another bank. And I was part of the team of lawyers that would facilitate that transaction, which in and of itself is pretty cut and dry, pretty straightforward. But I would like to believe that from day one, I always brought heart to a transaction, I remember as a young lawyer, I would do a real estate closing after real estate closing, representing lenders.
And in those experiences, a new home buyer for instance, might be looking at a stack of papers that thick written by the bank and the bank's lawyers, me and my team of guys, a team of lawyers, men, and women who, whose only purpose is to protect the bank. So these documents are definitely the bank favor, right?
And I would be with these young, new homeowners who would be terrified of the process. So I like to think that I developed a rapport with them to help them understand that, like they have a lawyer there, their interests are covered and, to facilitate your transaction and brought that to everything I did.
I like to think I did anyway. And, I had a pretty successful practice, so
I was being facetious when asked, the question is. Is this compassion cultivated over time.
Yeah, no, I appreciate your question. I would say that. Yes, for sure. and I. So as a child, for instance, I remember being very sensitive to the feelings of other people I remember via.
And of course, learn, come to learn that people described that as empathy. And I always did. I always experienced that a little bit more than empathy. if a friend of mine was sad, I remember feeling their sadness often before they felt this sadness. And I remember being really concerned about that, my close friends and the people I cared about and.
I've come to learn. I don't know if you're familiar with the human design at all. it's a fascinating, way of assessing or understanding the way you tick and as a human design, I'm a reflector, which means that I am basically means that I'm sensitive to what other people, the other energies people are susceptible to often before they are.
And it's not a. I don't call it the psychic ability or anything like that. It's just a really profound sensitivity. And I've learned that working with people in leadership positions who might not be readily open to that vulnerability, I've learned to feel, to recognize that what I feel is often what they may be feeling, but not have words for it.
Not that they are hesitant to share it, they just might not be aware that's what they're experiencing. And so what I'll say is I'm feeling sadness in the space. Does that feel true for you? And they'll drop in and be like, yeah, I guess I wasn't really aware of that, but that's what I'm feeling. And Same as a kid. I was super, I probably would have, would be called hypersensitive or super sensitive, but I've really come to appreciate that. That was my superpower. And, because I can get people like when I was a kid, Teachers loved me. And I would get away with shit that I would get away with stuff that none of the other kids could get away with because of the teachers loved me to pieces.
It wasn't manipulation. It wasn't, trying to get away with stuff. It was just, I related to them and they related to me and other students, other kids would always come to me and they would trust me. And, So I've learned pretty quickly that sensitivity, although I did feel judged and get made fun of a little bit along the way, I learned pretty quickly too, to appreciate that about myself and which is a real, was a real gift.
And, so yes, in many ways I would say it's not so much the empathy that has developed over time. But understanding it and not judging it has developed over time. Like really celebrating it as a super power rather than a weakness that has developed over time. Does that make sense?
Yeah, for sure.
Thank you for sharing that. So one of the things that we say a lot is our biggest superpowers usually comes around because wounds say that your ability to sense both yourself and others as one of your superpowers.
Yes, I absolutely would. and I love even acknowledging as that, it's easy to perceive it as a weakness because it, especially in our social construct where we tend to value that confident leadership, that is so certain and driven.
And yet at the same time, we suffer from the consequences of that. Confidence when it's a false confidence, right? We see examples on every news feed of the results of somebody following that I'm certain of this, and then not being willing to see the 10,000 other perspectives that might have adjusted that leadership just a little bit.
and it can be a weakness if I allow it to overtake me, for instance, sometimes I'll feel somebody's sadness and it will just overwhelm me. And then my wife will just nudge me and say, that might not be yours. she's like in my corner, that might not be your sadness.
And then I'll check in. Oh yeah. Yeah, I love that.
Was that a turning point for you? Nice. Hey, this is not a weakness. This is actually an asset.
Was there a picture
for you to recognize
that? So I will say I love that question. I will say that it may not be a moment, but it's a period of my life where my spiritual exploration took on an entirely new level, for instance. I've always been aware of my spiritual journey since I was about 10 years old, but the real juice kicked in maybe 15 years ago when, I really started exploring not just. Comparative theology and stuff like that because I started that path in college.
But when I really started exploring like going deep with shaman and plant medicine exploration and things like that, where were real. Really, critical look and deep exploration of consciousness when I saw, Oh, you know what, this thing, this sensitivity that I have, it's kept in its place for building relationship or developing trust or whatever is actually a huge part of who I'm here to be, and which can only come from that sort of higher perspective.
That spiritual exploration can give you. and so I would say, yeah, that sort of that moment, if I, if you will, that I decided to step into the spiritual exploration and say, you know what, I'm not going to turn away a single voice. I'm going to explore every piece of wisdom I can. I'm going to work with every shaman who will sit down with me, I'll climb to every mountain top that I can have time and availability for, to find out and to explore more about that.
I'm actually very curious about the different encounters that you have, but
I'll pause for a
moment. So don't let me forget to ask you about those encounters, but I'll add what you just said earlier about, it's not a single little moment per se. I've always been curious, but when I was younger, my curiosity will be shunned.
By others because it was too intense for most of them. And also it comes, It tested ego quite a lot. Cause it'd be asking teachers questions after questions and they don't have answers for obvious. I've reached the extent of their knowledge. And they're too prideful to tell me like, Hey, I don't know.
So they would just say shut up, shut it down. And same thing with other parental figures in my life. And it wasn't until. I started to explore my own spiritual journey. As you said, my definition of spirituality is my relationship to the greater whole and not necessarily certain religiosity per se, but in my place in the world.
I agree with that a hundred percent.
Where do I stand? And then from that place, and also look at the different constructs that I have in my mind, and then start to examine one by one. Oh, that I believe this because I believe it. Or is it inherited? is it, I got it somewhere from the society or from the Chinese culture or for some books or some way, for every single one of them and to come to trust more and more, my subjective reality of.
This feels right for me, right? This is my truth. Versus I'm trying out something, some ideas some belief some constructs, and it's I'm going to believe it because I had believed it for the last three decades or I'm going to be, because it's part of my culture per se. So thank you for sharing that.
No, it was really beautiful.
And I thank you. I love it. Yeah, go ahead. I just love the way you described that. Very eloquently as well, that this idea of it's my truth. as I've come to understand it, as I've asked into it, and there's always going to be a certain degree of stuff we take on faith.
Until we do our own exploration, especially as young children and young adults, we take on, what our parents teach us and what our teachers teach us, et cetera. And I think at some point, the really fortunate among us have the space to ask our own questions. No.
Yes, for sure.
we don't have to worry about food shelter, social connection, self acting. we can ask more of these types of questions are based in universe. Self-transcendence actualization.
Yeah. The upper levels of Maslow's pyramid are definitely luxurious. Yes.
so you've explored this for 15 years.
You're talking to different shamans and, tell us, maybe one or two or three of your encounters that really have you reevaluate your own value system internally.
Yeah. That's such a. Big giant question. A beautiful question. And what's funny is, so there's, this part of me is like, Oh my God, I want to tell you about everything. And some of which, aren't legal and, so which are very controversial, et cetera, but that,
maybe let me
put a, we happy.
We don't. I just not going to give you names and dates. So name.
Share with us, your experience and the lesson you took from it.
Yeah. so one of the. There's so many to pick from a dish. There are two in particular that I will, that I'd love to share. One of which really relates to even the name of your podcast, Nobel warrior that I'd love to address.
the first one is a moment that I had during it with, with a shaman who I'd grown to trust had many deep experiences with using, psilocybin mushrooms, among many other things, but including, ayahuasca. which if you're not familiar as a tea mate, I'm sure you are, but, others may not be that.
it was a teammate from the vine of two vines that grow prodigiously in, in the rain forest. And that over time, the brewing of these two, vines. Emit, substance that a DMT and other things that have psychoactive effects. And during one of these experiences, I remember having. Being aware of my attachment to my life, my ego, my consciousness, and my fear of letting go of that.
And the shaman was encouraging me to let go. and I was. Quite afraid to let go. And why are you afraid? And I remember saying because I'm afraid I'll disappear. Literally my ego was holding on against the risk of obliteration, which in many ways on the spiritual path is yes, obliterate the ego and let that happen.
But in a moment, I was terrified because literally in my altered state, I also, I actually thought that I might disappear, like literally disappear and there was nothing that Sharman could do other than hold me and encourage me. And I remember having this moment where I was deep in this space and conscious of my body curled up in a ball.
and having a dialogue with creation itself saying if I let go, I might, my body might soil itself. I might throw up. I might poop myself and dah, but on a higher level, if I let go, I might disappear. and I just was rocking back and forth and rocking back and forth. And I'm having this dialogue and I'm sweating and I'm shivering.
And I want to, I have to evacuate my bowels at the same time. I have to purge my gut and I was just rocking back and forth. I'm rocking back and forth and I heard, and I hear this, the sweetest voice. I can't even, I can't even approximate it. It was so sweet and heavenly and sublime. I heard the words trust mother. And my whole body relaxed, I heard this voice and it was medicine to me that I can't even, it was other worldly. And that moment was not just trust mother in this moment. It was not just released to to whatever your body might do. It was such a overarching admonishment. To trust mother.
Now, what I interpreted that instantaneously as a knowing in my body was to trust creation, trust the universe, trust mother nature, trust mother, the energy that holds me to deliver me to my highest expression, not try so hard, not try to force things, which is often, the masculine I'm clear on my objective. I'm going to make this happen.
Strong-willed strong-willed right
here, which is beautiful. And is it serving us right back? So that, for me, I don't know if I've conveyed the profound nature of that experience, but really. Those words, come back to me often when I'm, when I become aware that I'm trying to push something, what I'm forcing an agenda or trying to make something happen.
Okay. Yeah. Yeah.
these type of spiritual awakening moments is. The alpha and the Omega in that moment. So where we describe it, words do not do it justice and the profound nature of this particular method, viewers get an idea of
what it can be. But
it did for George. And it continued to be an anchor of our mantra for you to navigate your internal States as you're facing new challenges in life.
Oh my gosh. Always. Absolutely. And, because again, when I'm trying to force something, when some things. There's definitely hard work involved in success. there's definitely times when things are going to be hard. And at the same time, there are occasions when. It just, doesn't always need to be that hard, and distinguishing between the two is important is a skill is a life skill at the same time, surrendering to it.
When it, when you noticed that it doesn't have to be that hard is important. And that those words, trust mother for me, remind me to do that. And what I've found is. If I default to trusting mother and surrendering to it. If it's a moment where I'm supposed to be working a little harder, that will always present itself.
So the default of trusting and surrendering actually is almost always the best way to go, because if it's, if it turns out not to be, there's almost always time to recover.
Does that make sense?
Yeah, it does.
How do you feel about that?
Yeah. Yeah, no, I'm trying to see what, there's a lot of places for me to go, but I'm curious to know about this whole journey of surrendering. A share my own spirits into the people who are watching this. My name literally means strong-willed so meaning masculine, carving out, No, just, yeah, go over a, go through Ray, go under a, go around. It doesn't matter. Just fulfill my, it has always been my strong suit. It's in my name. And as Georgia equally related, it's a sword. It cuts both ways. So I can use it to pulverize obstacles in front of me at the same time.
There's a cost of trying to just making things harder than you need to be sometimes like riding a wave I don't always have to ride every wave. Sometimes I can actually just look at all the waves that's in front of me and say, all right, I'm this wave is too hard. it takes too much effort to paddle over there.
Let me write this other way. And we experience something even more magical or surprising. That's part of my lesson that I learned. So I'm curious, in the journey of learning the, navigate of the different waves, right? Sometimes you use your will to paddle harder. Sometimes you surrender.
So can you share with us? And this is a very philosophical question, perhaps, how are you learning to surrender? I don't know if it, is that clear enough of a question? Should I contextualize
more? No, it's a great, it's clear. so I promise I will answer this question. Can I, let me ask you a question. First is, I'll tell you why I'm asking the question.
Cause I've worked with many, war veterans, active duty war veterans, both cancer survivors, as well as in the leadership, programs and just the word surrender to a combat veteran has a whole dictionary full of definition behind it. And so I'm curious to you what surrender means for you in this context?
Yeah, no one has ever asked me that question before. What does surrender surrender means for me giving up my sovereignty, giving up an agency to something. Yeah to something else, not
me. So that's awesome. Wow. What a potent definition? My literally my, the hair on my arms is standing up because that piece of surrendering giving up your sovereignty.
Now, first of all, as a human who recognizes your sovereignty and your agency in any moment might just be like the only thing you have. Like the only thing that is a certain, if you will, like in a world where impermanence is a natural state, the idea of.
Surrendering or giving up your sovereignty could be so challenging to your sense of existence to your head.
So my entire ego egoic being correct. Yeah.
because in a way, sovereignty is part of what defines our ego, our sense of self. And so what, so I want to get back to the original question now.
the experience of surrender, how I've embraced the experience of surrender is really related to that last piece of your definition to something else. And that as a man, as a leader, as a teacher, as a father, as a partner, as a friend, I'm not willing to surrender consciously my agency, to any other person. Now I know, I recognize that I do that unconsciously. I do that unconsciously. Every time I respond to a notification on my phone, I just did it. I just surrendered my agency now. And, but at the same time, I've consciously taken steps. Like I'd never have my notifications on my phone and not just the movie.
that movie, the reason movie, they come out that just dilemma the social dilemma. But I had done that before. Like I'm not willing, I'm not willing to surrender my agency to every other person's impulse on Twitter. For instance, however, I am willing in some certain circumstances and.
Pretty much every circumstance to surrender my agency to what I've come to understand to be creation. And you might, people might call that God, depending on your vocabulary, right? Christ, consciousness, Jesus, Buddha, Brahma, Allah, whatever word we use, infinite spirit, infinite, nature creation, whatever.
However, anyone would relate to that entity, that field of energy, that infinite field of possibility, whatever that is. I surrender to that. I submit to that because I truly believe that my most expressed life as a human being, is my humanness surrendering to my spiritual being expressing itself.
So in other words, If I could let my consciousness of my ego, this thing that I think defines me sometimes this George ness, if I surrender that to my spiritness, that often results in a better outcome for me. And it can be scary sometimes it was scary when I was rocking back and forth with that Charmin to trust and to let go.
it's scary sometimes taking the stage in front of 1500 people or whatever. And will I remember everything I wanna teach them. I remember everything I want to say. it's scary saying to somebody. My fee for working with me for the year is a hundred thousand dollars. And that is payable in full and dah.
It's scary to look somebody in the eye and say that, and yet surrendering and a surrender is also includes not attaching to the outcome. Surrendering includes a preparation that the universe is answer could be no right now. for me, the surrender is a two part thing. It's trusting that you'll be safe in the, just surrendering in and of itself will be safe and trusting that regardless of the outcome, that safety will continue, which actually bridges to the second experience that I wanted to share that relates to your noble warrior. If I may please, you shared with me when we were first getting to know each other, that Nobel warrior to you meant, someone who's purposeful. And I think that was, and also willing to lean into discomfort, correct.
Which I think is one of the most beautiful definitions of a warrior. when we think of, I'm half Greek and half Italian and my Greek heritage is Spartan. And so the fascination around the Spartan warrior ethic has always been in my it's just been in my consciousness since I was a teenager.
And then of course, when the 300 came out and that exploration was just renewed. And the idea of celebrating that, a warrior chooses a certain ethic. And leans into that ethic, no matter what it looks or feels like, even when it's horribly uncomfortable and even when death is certain, right?
Because that the word has adopted that's my code. and the reason why that warrior can rely on his brothers in arms in this case is because he knows that his brother has taken that same accepted that same code. Now, if we take. Actual mortal conflict out of the equation, then leaning into discomfort becomes possibly a real paradigm shifter for people.
And I remember working with a shaman with a medicine called kambo. It's a frog medicine. It's a medicine that's derived from the secretions of the skin of a, Amazonian tree frog of, South American tree frog. Now this tree what's significant about these secretions is the tree frog has no predators.
So literally in its DNA, there is no mechanism for fear. There's no mechanism for, Oh, this could kill me. Just doesn't exist because nothing in nature eats this frog. So its secretions being poisonous are somewhat paradoxical. The poison keeps it alive because nothing wants to eat this frog and yet nothing wants to eat this frog.
so the medicine is paradoxical. And in the human system, it's very disruptive. And by that, it causes tremendous nausea, not so much psychedelic effects, but definitely altering States. And I remember being in ceremony with this medicine, with a shaman being in and all sorts of diff discomfort.
And part of me, my ego was saying, this isn't as bad as chemotherapy. I can handle this. I can have with this. I can handle this
out of curiosity.
me, the nausea was very, really bad nausea is really bad nausea, and you just want it to end, And the, my physical body was in great deal of discomfort.
I w you know, really nauseous and very similar to the ayahuasca experience, wanted to come out of both ends. You know what I mean? And the shaman, she was a brilliant teacher and just held brilliant space. You just whispered in my ear, this is what getting feels And I remember those words and thinking to myself, okay.
Maybe I don't want it to end, not from a masochistic place of, yeah. I want to feel this pain, but rather, Oh, if this is what getting well feels like maybe I want to lean into this. And not escape from it. And why I think that's relevant to your warrior metaphor is because the idea of leaning into discomfort, depending on the context can be quite heroic.
even if it doesn't appear that way to anybody else, but you, because your willingness to lean into discomfort at any given moment. might be so inspirational to you. I know for me, I was like, I was really proud of myself because at any moment I could have asked my body to purge and ended the experience, but I leaned into it.
And what I really discovered, even if that was the only thing I was meant to learn about myself from that journey is that when the chips are down or when the moment comes, I might be willing to lean into it. that gives me a great sense of empowerment. I wasn't in mortal danger, I wasn't in harms way.
My body was physically safe. I was just really uncomfortable and I leaned into it. And so I feel like, there's something inspiring about that. it's like not at all to equate. this is not an equivalent, when we hold so much adverse admiration for that firefighter who runs into the building, wait a second, that's totally contrary to your wellbeing.
And you run into the building that willingness, that firefighter runs into the building because he or she has prepared for that. They've done the work they've strengthened that muscle. They know the ins and outs and the strategies to protect themselves. They, so they have the competence to lean into the discomfort.
that is a really important pathway to lay out that the pathway to courage and greatness is actually weak. We know the steps. We could build a muscle. We can practice, we can put into place this structures and, strategies to support our being our highest self. We can get the mentorship and the tutelage to learn those skills.
We can do all these things ahead of time so that when we're challenged, we can lean into the discomfort.
Yeah, for sure. Thank you so much, George, for sharing that. So on this podcast, we do talk a lot about different ceremonies combo, ayahuasca, Spartan race, boxing, ice, bath breath, word, all different kinds of ways to why may say extremely uncomfortable, extremely intense, but the way I articulate for myself, actually.
So people think that I like running. I like this type of. Intensities actually don't like it at all. I don't like it. I don't, I hate running. It's not fun for me. It's you know how people say, I have this runner's hide is a euphoria. I've never experienced that at all and never experienced that. But what I do like about it is I'm earning my resiliency.
I'm earning my grit. Because resilience and grit can be, it can be given. I got to earn it. I can't just go out. I buy a hundred units of resilience. That's just not how it works. So for me, every time I'm going through this, self-selected, intense experience and earning myself more resilience, capacity or capacity for resilience, shall we say yes.
So that to me is a. Spiritual payoff, right? that's what I received going through combo or ayahuasca or a Spartan race or boxing or any of these, uncomfortable things because I enjoy earning my own, wisdom and resiliency and grit from that. So
true. yeah, I love it. I, I went through a phase probably 20 years ago where I couldn't, there was an author named Richard Marchenko.
Richard was one of the founding members of seal team six great writer. He writes a lot of fiction based on his experience as a commando. And he's a great writer, very funny, very, totally alpha, And, I remember he wrote. That one of the wisdom, that one of the pieces of wisdom that they kept in the seal teams, was that the more you sweat in training, the less you bleed in battle.
And that stuck with me, just stuck in my consciousness and I've trained for marathons and, run and use that as a platform to raise a lot of money for great causes and things. And I remember remembering during training going out and in February and cold wet. Just crappy conditions to run.
This is back East I'm training for a marathon in the middle of February, because for the marathon in June or whatever, just being absolutely miserable and just reminding myself, you're going to be glad you did at mile 20. Two or mile 24 lad. Yeah. When you hit that wall, you're going to be glad you might not be conscious even in that moment, but your body is going to be glad that you ran this mile right now.
and it's so true. how many times I've hit mild, 24 and felt like my legs were going to fall off and just feel that okay, it's almost there. I'm almost there. And just get that little bit less left of fuel in the tank or whatever it takes to get you across that finish line. yeah.
Thank you for that. So let's go back to the journey of surrendering, because I think it's apt to relevant to what we're discussing in my mind journey of surrendering is it is a journey, right? In the beginning part, maybe it goes against ego. I'm going to power through it. it's I can handle the intensity, this, and I was sharing my personal experience with plant medicine as an example.
and for me, it wasn't until I've done it multiple times and I realized the insanity of my ego or my mind, just watch it over and over again. It's Oh, okay. So this, these thoughts, these feelings is bodily sensations they're real, but not true. and then develop my own.
I call it spiritual spine, right? So it can actually trust and develop my spiritual spine to trust this collective consciousness, whatever you call it, this, trust this in your knowingness. And right as within me trust more and more in really grow that's virtual spine. in spite of external lack of external evidence and continue to trust this inner knowing.
So I'm curious to know what are some of the tactical steps that one could take to develop their own spiritual spine using my metaphor.
in addition to kombo, those are my practices. Those are your practices. Can you just break it down for us? What are some other practices that they can take on to have that faith in their own internal knowingness?
So it's a super powerful question. I totally, I will get, I will answer that. I also want to say that even kombo and state altering experiences, things like that, they're not shortcuts. they might be short cuts in that. You definitely save yourself years of struggle by getting to insights quicker.
At the same time, it may take a lifetime to integrate some of those discoveries. So I do like to point out that the, that working with John and things like that, it isn't an easy pass to something, because some people have these experiences and the profound learning, they get. Rocks them. effectively that they have, they realize they have to reevaluate every way they live.
So it's not by any means a shortcut to do anything really. having said that, what I love about the question is number one, everybody finds their own way. and I'll share what I've seen. I was here, what I've seen to be effective that. That we have this nervous system, right?
This is incredibly intricate nervous system. That from the day we're born, Gathers information. if you look at like literally our nervous system, when we're born as a clean slate, it's like an empty, hard drive. and we go our entire lives. All of the world wants to do is install an app on our harddrive.
Everybody. We meet wants to install their app on our hard drive. And every teacher wants to teach, something to us. That's an app being installed into our hard drive and. one of the first things that I have found profound for me as a scientist, as a curious seeker, as, is to understand a little bit about the biology of how it works.
I think, as a life scientist, Bef, graduate with my degree in biology, ecology, and natural history. I'm curious about how things are put together in the natural world. That to me has been a huge gift. I think having a curiosity about how the natural world works is fundamental. Even a rudimentary understanding of biology, of what the circle of life, about trophic cascades, about how, the natural world works, why it is that.
A, pollution in one part of the world impacts the strength of a hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico. Why that is that connectivity, the interconnectivity of all living beings. Having a fundamental understanding of that is critical . And so the first thing is, get curious about everything, get curious about life, learn about your body and how it works, learn about, why it's important that we eliminate long chain polymers from the food chain, why it's important to eliminate, what's the, Roundup from our food processing and food creation.
methodology, why it's important that we be kind to one another and compassionate, all these things. So number one, get curious. Number two. Be willing to experiment so that you find what works for you. I could tell you that Wim Hof breathing, for instance, an ice bath is a great strategy and it is, I love my cold showers.
I love ice baths and I love the breathing and that works for me, but it may not work for you. And that's okay. So be curious and find out what works for you, which I think is really, Why else are we here? Why else are we here? If not to learn what works for us. and so that's number two, recognize
there's a reason why, so recently I just real quick interjection, and then we can go back to your number three meditation.
questions or insights that came to me is what's it all for, if not for joy.
What's it all for, if not for joy. So that's why we focus. I want about fulfillment joy on this podcast.
and addressing specifically to high achievers. Cause I've been down that path before high achievers. Hey, don't get me wrong.
Fantastic and great. And that's a proxy to aliveness, joy and fulfilling life, so
I love it because I don't think any, if you. Any high achiever on their deathbed ever said, I wish I'd suffered more wish I'd created more misery around me. and all of the people who I've talked to who have had what we might call a deathbed conversion.
All of the people I've ever talked to that have had one of those experiences where maybe a near death experience or something wherein they had a shift in their consciousness. all of them said, I want to be more available for the moment and I want to enjoy life more. Nobody ever said, I'm really gonna try to put more suffering in my life or make the people around me more miserable.
And yeah. w if not for joy, like one of my, one of my core purposes, Tracy, and I agree on this and we're so part of what brought us together as a team, To really there are children, there are animals. there are human beings suffering tremendously in our world. And I really do believe that their suffering impacts my wellbeing.
And if I can do something to ease their suffering, not just by offering them money or, a meal or something. Although I try to do that too, but by actually trying to impact the conditions that contribute to their suffering. if I can have an impact on that, then I know I'm impacting my wellbeing too. That's why I'm so passionate about learn and get, get curious about how the natural world works because you and I are definitely connected. Your wellbeing impacts my wellbeing and vice versa, And so this idea of joy isn't purely selfish. Like of course I want to enjoy my life.
I want to have lots of joy and pleasure in my own life. And I know. That if I can create joy in another's life, that supports my well-being
if we look at all of the examples of real, truly people that we admire, and I think it was Malcolm Gladwell, we could have been gay. And Katie Hendricks talked about the 10,000 hours putting in your 10,000 hours to be, to develop a competency in something.
And then the it's it's. It's often not enough to be, to desire a competency. If there's a level of willingness that has to accompany that. And sometimes. The for instance, I love communicating with people from stage. I love being on stage. I love teaching to audiences and it's meaningful to me to be able to convey what I've learned to people and to create that experience in such a way that it's an intimate conversation, not just.
Me lathering onstage out to, a dark room. it's meaningful to that. The audience has an experience that they not just leave. Oh, that was interesting. Now let's go have lunch, but they actually like, we've had a conversation that's meaningful to me. And so I've studied how to do that.
I've practiced, I've put myself at risk of being looking foolish, to try to develop that skill. Okay.
The willingness to be uncomfortable sometimes for long periods of time has to accompany that desire. And I don't know that we teach that, globally. I don't know that we teach that in the social conversation, especially in a world where literally. I can have a refrigerator full of food with one click of my thumb on the smartphone app to order groceries.
we can have our needs met relatively quickly, given the means, et cetera. And so this idea of, okay, you may have to endure some discomfort to know that experience that you desire is. I feel like we try to teach that in schools. But oftentimes we're left. We have to really discover that on our own.
And this is where that desire. You're going to have to hold that desire. You're going to want that thing. You're going to want it. You're going to have to want it hard enough to be willing, to endure the discomfort, to get to that place. And that's true of anything. That's true of a skill that's true of money.
That's true of an opportunity to true relationship. All of these things that we have to be willing to put the time in and learn, which means, and this is the clincher for so many clients. So many people that have helped get this in their cells that we have to be willing sometimes to be a beginner.
And to me, there is follow. there is very little, there are very few experiences as uncomfortable as being a beginner at something. because being a beginner at something means being not good at something, and that's really challenging to our ego. So it's not just about getting curious.
It's not just about finding what works for you. It's also be willing to be a beginner know there. My wife teaches this brilliant thing. She learned it from somewhere, this idea of their four stages of consciousness. Where there's unconscious incompetence, which we, you're moving around. You don't know what you don't know, but you think, everything and that's very dangerous.
Then there's conscious incompetence, which is really hard place to be because you're aware of what you don't know. if you're starting to, I'm a ski instructor. So we're skiing is a good example. When at first, you don't really know, you don't know the breadth of what you don't know about the sport.
Then you start skiing and you realize you take a lesson and you realize how much you don't know. And then as you gather some facility with it, you're really focusing on what to do, right? That's conscious competence. You're aware of what, you're aware of what you don't know, but you're developing some skill.
And then that last phase where skiing becomes like breathing, that's unconscious competence, that's that highest level and you gotta be willing to endure all of the uncomfortable stages of moving through that ladder of competency, truly to have anything, pick, anything that you want.
You're going to have to at some level in some way, go through those. And that requires the next thing, which is what I've done. A lot of work with people. This is probably what I'm best at is holding people in that they start judging themselves. You start judging yourself when you get good enough at something where you like to do it.
but, and also conscious enough about it to realize how much farther you have to go. That can be really tricky. People are often conditioned to judge themselves. I don't know if you can relate to this. I know I can
very much so
Oh, I can't believe I made that mistake, right?
Yeah. mastery, I want it now I'm watching Michael Jordan play.
and then I want to be Michael Jordan tomorrow, so that that's the egoic. mind wants. Yeah, especially for high achievers, because they have figured out things in the past and they have some other successes in some other areas and they think that everything should be as easy, but really we enter into the dojo.
Let me use that metaphor a bit. You're entering white belt. So you're going to suck for a long time, until you hit that 10,000 hours in deliberate practice at 10,000 hours, not just,
that's just 10,000 hours just sitting there.
Then you actually begin to really appreciate, that skill as a self-expression as a part of you.
So I'm curious to know, from your point of view, cause you got into multiple different things in a very high level. you are a professional ski instructor. You're a coach. You are a speaker coach. And I know that also you are you're, you do like men's work as well as a relationship type work.
So you have competency in a lot of different areas. I'm curious. Now, at what point did you choose coaching as part of your dharmic path ? All right. I know that I'm pretty good, but I'm going to devote my life to this. Let me contextualize that even more.
It's like any relationships, First you got curious and you're
the activity and then you get passionate about it. then you decided to get married, then it's the devotion. So there's that any kind of journey that you take on any kind of relationships, I'm curious from your perspective, at what point did you say I'm going to.
Double down on coaching and speaking and being an author as part of my path. I love
it. I love the question. I know that very early on, like literally in college, I knew that I was meant to speak and just, I felt it like, I listened to a, again, a man who would eventually become a dear person to me and a mentor, Zig Ziglar, who I heard a tape of his, somebody handed me a tape of Isabella, but the science of.
Or something about how to stay motivated. And I thought, Oh my gosh, I love the way this guy talks. And I love the image of me standing in front of a group of people and sharing it. Yeah. And I started speaking, like I took a public speaking course and I started taking every opportunity I could and every opportunity to hone that skill.
I was a DJ I hosted talk shows. I did, I, as soon as I could get my FCC, approval, I was doing radio shows. And then I, Ah, just every opportunity I could to take the stage. I did stand up for two years just to get myself, over the stage fright things. And, and meanwhile, following whatever professional, like I started in banking and then law school and dah, always seeking opportunities to speak and share.
Then from the perspective of this is what I've learned from other teachers. And somebody, some people call that the reporter style of teaching. I went out and did my research and then shared the results of my research. And then as I developed some experience doing that very early on, I started creating my own frameworks for motivation and how to stay motivated, things like that.
And what happened was, this was all before there was a coaching industry. No, this was back in the late 1980s and early 1990s. So I had just graduated from law school and started my law practice. And I had the great fortune of having as a client for a little real estate transaction representing this man to purchase his home.
He was a CEO of a company and we began to talk and he was a real fan of personal development. And so we started comparing notes about. About all the great teachers that we loved and personal development. And he was fascinated by my fascination. And he said, my sales team hears me talk about this all the time.
Would you come and talk to my sales team? And I was like, of course I would love to do it. And as a result of that, they asked me, how do we. How do we stay connected to this material? We would just love this conversation. It keeps us inspired and we do better when we're plugged into this conversation.
And the, my first coaching program was born. he hired me to work with them on an ongoing basis and their performance reflected that, and they made more money. The company did better, et cetera. And this was again before there. I don't remember ever hearing the expression executive coach, at the time.
And so I started doing that coaching people to higher levels of performance. And I picked up a client here who needed to hone his golfing, her golfing game, actually. And then I picked up another sales team and then I picked up another athlete and then a football player, and then, doctor's office at a hair salon and just.
Kind of turned into something. It wasn't intentional. I didn't say I'm going to build a coaching practice. just happened that my gifts were being called for, and then was had the good fortune to pair up with a colleague of mine, who we had met on the speaking path and, Zig Ziglar and Brian, Tracy and Dennis Waitley.
And we created this thing called the coaching staff. It was the first online coaching portal. it was a real opportunity for me to work with people who I admired, for a decade. and that's probably the first time I actually called myself a coach, I'd always looked at myself as a guide and I called myself an enthusiastic guide.
I get people excited about stuff. And then I really learned the ins and outs of, okay. somebody wants something, you establish where they are, where they want to be and the bridge to get there and then support them along the way to get there. And like my first official coaching program came into form.
and then at the same time, my life experiences. kept up with me, I went through a very painful divorce and ended up with sole custody of my kids. And that experience alone as a full-time single father, a lawyer with two law offices, a having a coaching practice, like managing all of that, gave me some real material to share on stage.
And so I started writing and speaking more. and again, this is really before the internet exploded and became such a real part of all of our lives. So it's been a very gradual there's no meteoric overnight success story. It's a very gradual process of, my competencies and the audience for my gifts grew along the way.
Yeah, no, I appreciate that. That depiction, because oftentimes when we talk about purpose driven companies or purpose driven life, people have this romantic idea of when I find my purpose, I'm going to fall in love first sight, or I'm going to feel this tug that's within me and the universe will open up as pathway.
I just haven't, I've talked to 90 people so far, I've just not met one person who had just said that, the universe show me the path and
strike by lining the life. Just what I've heard over and over again is I was curious about it. I'm open to new pathways and there's positive feedback loop.
And I continue to cultivate my skills and throughout I got better and better. And that's how I hone my dharmic path along the way. That's what I've heard so far. And from my personal experience, that's my experience as well. I've yet to get hit by lightning and just, everything goes smooth sailing and no problems and everything's effortless. Just that hasn't been my experience so far in life. Guys, me a lot of happy accidents, Hey, I was called to do this. Didn't really want to do it, but I did it anyway because I want to be of service. And develops some life long friends out of that. And then, our path continues has just been my experience.
Hence the question.
Yeah, for sure. And I think it depends on your perspective, but I think those are the lightning strikes. Like the lightning strikes are. Are the ayahuasca journey where you realize a piece of your Donova a piece of your path is illuminated. That's a lightning strike. it doesn't, it might not, you might not, you might stand up from that experience.
Oh my God, I see something so very clearly. And then that doesn't necessarily yield results instantaneously. and yet the shift in your consciousness is one of those results is a big deal. Like I think, the course in miracles talks about a miracle is a shift in consciousness. And so if you've had a shift in consciousness, it's quite miraculous, it could come from an ayahuasca journey.
It could come from a painful, an accident or, circumstance. But it's that shift in consciousness that is quite miraculous. And. Accumulating those shifts in consciousness and honoring them, and then surrendering them to them has an accumulative effect that may result in great wealth.
It may result in an opportunity where you make a lot of money in a short period of time. It may have those effects, but what's even more profound in my experience is the ability to look back after a fashion. And say, on the whole, the, these years were invested wisely. I served a purpose. I touched people's lives in a meaningful way.
I know that when I get an email or run into somebody who says, I heard you talk at this conference and you said this one thing. those three, the feeling is not, it won't last forever. It's not who I am. and I'm not alone. That changed my perspective like that.
That's the kind of stuff that sustains me,
I, a hundred percent of my friend. Thank you for saying that. doing this podcast we'll talk about all kinds of things, Really life in general, business specific, but the more specific thing is fulfillment and joy, and also resilience and overcome difficulties by how do you actually stay on purpose in spite of your circumstances?
And sometimes we talk about they're very specific things like suicidal thoughts, ideations, and one of the guests share his experience in staring down the barrel of a gun
Literally people almost pulling the trigger and chose go a different path and how his life has shifted after that single decision, to a more beautiful place where he's at now.
And one of the, members heard this story, said, Hey, I was actually in the very similar state. I was planning, doing all these things. And I thank you for sharing this story. I chose a different path. So hearing stories like that really makes it meaningful for me to continue this effort
by creating that platform.
I mean that, yeah. That's so that's, it's beautiful that's meaningful to you. if that's fueling you, that's part of your dharma, like you say, you're coming back, you've touched a life in a very meaningful way. It's beautiful.
Yeah, it's like breadcrumbs, right? We don't always hear, type of breadcrumbs.
they don't always come back to us, but I do trust that, whatever listeners are hearing this, hearing your story and your gems and your mental models, your actual more tactics, they're going to take this on. And the positive impact reverberates, Infinitely.
and, isn't it cool to think about?
I love that you're sharing that. And you shared that story about the suicide, because that particular, that one, for me, it is potent because I literally, I've never had a suicidal idea. I've probably had the idea of it, but I've never that planning stage that they talk about as being so profound.
And so for me, the idea of suicide for someone to be, to reach that place of, I don't know enough about the experience to call it hopelessness, but it appears to me to be a state of resourcelessness where someone might feel I'm at a place where I have no other. Option that this scene, no, as it's been described to me by people who have been in that experience, that this seems to be the best option.
It's actually as a positive that, as it was described to me, by someone that my leaving this planet would be a good thing for the planet. And to me, that state of being. and again, not with the ego or not with any kind of sense that I understand things better than anybody. But to me, I experienced that as a tragedy, that someone would feel that their absence from this life would be an improvement to light that lands in me as tragic and sad.
and so the idea of giving someone a pause in that moment, that your life, your existence and your following, your inspiration might give someone pause in that moment is a beautiful thing. And yeah. that just really touches me.
Yeah. Thank you. And one thing I also want to underline here is yes, we do talk about business, but ultimately these are all proxies to a joyous life, ultimately, right? These are just paths, whether in a relationship or not, whether you run a business or not, whether you have kids or not, these are just different States, whether you do Iowasca or not, right? These are just different States, different paths. You ultimately an experience of aliveness the experience of possibilities in life.
If we could just recontextualize ultimately, it's all about context, right? a way of being, if we can, recontextualize a way of being, then they can actually see new possibilities. Oh, I don't necessarily have to be married or I don't necessarily have to have a business or I can change it. if I don't like this particular setup because yeah.
and just along that line, that. callback from before there is a ripple effect that fellow who, or work out who you, by helping them share their story, touched the life of another, that life will go on to touch other lives. And that's I, what. When you mentioned breadcrumbs, it's it might not be our, it might not be a constant thing where we become aware of the breadcrumbs.
We don't wake up and say, Oh yes, I purpose. Very clear. and my reason for following it is very clear and the feedback is always there. It's not the case. Sometimes it's dark and lonely and it feels like, why the heck am I doing this after all? And, it's important to remember breadcrumb or no breadcrumb that impulse to do that thing, to follow that, to say that word, to serve that purpose, to share that message is there for a reason, even when we don't know the reason.
Yeah. logically it makes no sense for me to do a podcast. Like at all,
I'm a biomedical engineer. I'm going to start, you start having executive. Why the heck would I want to talk about entrepreneurship and spirituality at the intersection of the two? it makes zero sense, but here's the thing, subjectively it feels right. So Brett, as you said, Bread crumb, or no breadcrumb.
Those are nice. Don't get me wrong. But I feel true when I do this. When I have a deep conversation with a fellow noble warrior, it feels true to me. So I will continue to do this. Whatever you call it as a service, a self-indulgent effort, whatever it is. I don't know why. I like it. So I'm going to keep doing it.
You know what I mean?
Yeah, absolutely. Yes. And so just for the record, my friend, that, should you feel it still feels good, but the world might be indicating to you or you feel that the evidence is piling up against you? I promise you call me and I will remind you of why you need to keep doing it.
thank you. very much.
Now who you are is a space, a sacred space for people to step into their higher self. That's the way I read it and who you are and the words that you utter are nothing but support and encouragement as you so beautifully demonstrated just now.
So are there a specific kind of people because you serve a wide range of people, the athletes, the entrepreneurs, the, the S aspirational. speakers the, and the cancer survivor. So there's a whole spectrum of people who could use your wisdom and experience. How did you hone in on those are, or are there even narrower scope of people that could really best use your wisdom to really, we help them catalyze or elevate their life?
I appreciate the question. . Would be the hard to made. Like I couldn't say, Oh, that's when I decided to work with this population or that's when I decided it's there are some threads that weave through all of them and I'll say that what they have in common with all of these populations have in common that I've had the joy and honor to work with.
Is that. That somehow they see their lives, experiences as difficult as they may have been as purposeful and may not even understand the purpose, but they know they have a feeling, it could be a philosophy. They may not really even totally buy into it, but they have a sense inside them that these experiences happened for a reason that they're, there must be some good to come out of it.
And, worked with trauma victims and people who've been through horrible unspeakable things and yet have an outlook and a disposition for life to say, this is going to mean something. This is going to mean something. I haven't figured it out yet maybe, or what exactly how it's going to look, but I know it is going to mean something supposed to mean something to somebody.
And they might hear me say, Hey, your life experience has medicine for the planet and they might not even know what that means, but they feel the truth of it, And so that's one thing they have in common that they know that somehow their experience is meant to help or serve someone else.
I like that.
Yeah. and just the other things that they have in common sort of stemmed from that, for instance, they know that there's a message in that for them to share, which draws them to learning how to speak in public, or to put together a compelling talk or do a Ted talk And so they'll come to me for that. Or they will know that there's meant to be a business in there. that there's a commercial expression of that purpose that would be meaningful to pursue, and that could be rewarding to pursue. And so they'll come to me for that or that not only will be, there'll be a message or a business, but that expression has some, a spiritual potency, a spiritual purpose to it that is meant to express itself in all their relationships, whether it's leadership in their family or leadership in their business or leadership in their community or in the world, or it's supposed to come out as a book or a talk or whatever. And so where these come coalesce is that desire to here's this experience. And it's supposed to be in service of service somehow.
And for the expressions in between are as varied as the number of people, business of family, a lecture, a talk, a book, a coaching program, whatever it may be and having done many of those things, books, programs, coaching programs, radio shows, all that. I can help them find their way.
Do you mind going to that framework of how you help people?
Find the story that they want to tell because we're human beings, right? And chances are people that have come to you have lived multiple lives before they encounter you. They can talk about probably a lot of different things. How did you help them find the one thing that really gets to the core, the truth of who they are, and then help them express and illustrate, add color to it and to make the kind of impact that we want to make.
we try to avoid using the word, formula for instance. Sure. Because there is a science to communication. we know that while the words are super important, they're also only 8% or 6%, depending on who you ask of a communication experience in a transaction. 93%, as many as 94%, of a communication is the tone, the inflection, the body language, the positioning, the context that environment, et cetera.
And so there is a little bit of a science to it. And yet it's some the effectiveness of communication, your what might be super effective in yielding results for you. I could do it exactly the same way and completely fall flat. And so holding someone member that discomfort of the learning experience, holding someone in that, which is probably why me being a good encourager helps because a lot of the path kind of feels crappy, but holding someone in that year, you're doing it. You're doing great. All that judgment. That's coming up. It's not true. It's just a feeling. It's your inner child feeling judged. You got them, you can do this, all of that, the psychology of it and everything comes into play.
And so the, what's really fun for me is not so much, Oh, apply this formula first a then B, then C then D, but discovering on a case by case basis when I'm working intimately with somebody, what's your formula? It might be a D C B, now,
So I'm not so much that last word step-by-step per se.
Just want to understand how your mind works. If, when you meet someone new and say, Hey, tell me this and that. And then you can continue to go into deeper and deeper level of what they're trying to say.
Okay. That's a good question. let me give me a second to drop in here. It's a good question.
so while you think, let me just contextualize it as to whoever's watching this. So guys who I'm asking George here. I want, I'm curious to know about his metacognition, how he thinks about this, and this is not unlike to ask an artist and Hey, how do you paint a great piece of art?
So this certainly not asking him to mechanistically how he does it, but I'm curious to know how he approaches this. So shall we can learn from his thought process as well, As we're sharing our story, how do we actually get to the core of the truth of what we're trying to articulate?
so yeah, there's a piece about understanding what makes us tick like helping you understand what makes you tick includes. I'm going to use you as an example. Okay. And that if we were. If you wanted to give a talk for instance, or develop a program, a teaching program or a non-line program, or just to talk that, getting to know you in such a way that I understand why not, just not just your why? this is a distinction that we teach, not just your why, but why you. What is it about your experience? What is it about CK, his life arc that makes it important for you to share what you want to share? that piece, like you might say it's important to me because I care about human humanity and, sharing ideas, positively influences humankind, which is true and beautiful and inspiring.
And yet that next layer of why you, why is it important? What happened to you that made the sharing ideas meaningful to you? And it could be my guess is that you shared earlier that people told you I can't handle your questions. So stop being curious. Now human nature is such that. That would imprint upon you and importance, wait a second.
I know this doesn't feel right. So this little version of CK is like your stifling me doesn't feel right. And so I'm going to lock that away and say, I know this doesn't feel good, but the curiosity felt good. So I'm going to be purposeful in my curiosity. And look what happens lifetime, life experience after life experience says, hush, stop asking so many questions and yet this spark remains unextinguished, still burns.
And now you have the wherewithal as an adult, as a conscious sovereign being to do something about it. Nobody can stop you and say, don't be curious. You say. F you, I'm going to be curious and I'm going to go
me, your that's your why and why you all want, and yeah, you can't stop that life. Can't stop. that is your flame burning. And if you, as long as you're connected to that first. The how the points you want to teach the slide show or the video or the all that specific house are gravy.
If you're really tuned into your why and why you, the rest is details. We can be, we can. Build a slideshow. We can build a curriculum. We can build a framework around that and, have you remember what you want to talk? We can do the exercises that will drive that point home. We can find the right words.
All of that stuff is secondary to your knowing. Why you,
I love that. Thank you. So let me recap what you just said. Okay. So one,
my wife taught me that, by the way, I gotta give her credit. She taught me, I was always talking about the why what's your, why what's your, why? Which is important as we've demonstrated, but that why you such a sweet sublime, brilliant extra layer,
for sure. So the number one thing is identify my why as in. Why do I want to talk about it? Not from the intellectual point of view, but from the visceral point of view, I feel good when I get curious as using myself as an example, I don't know why it doesn't matter why I can go psychoanalyze myself to death.
I'm just curious person. So in the second layer that you're talking about is why me, what is the origin story of why I'm curious and I can share: my childhood days got shunned turned into a weakness rather than an asset, the pivotal story along the way. found a path podcast as a way to not channel my curiosity in a positive, productive, synergistic value-driven way.
here's my hero's journey. Did I hear that correctly?
You did. And perfectly, and why that's important is because. People can relate to you that way. When you say, when you said my teacher said, stop asking those questions, I felt your pain. I felt yeah. I had teachers telling me to shut up to that.
That feels crappy. We were brothers instantly because of that, someone hears that and they hear, Oh yeah, I've had that experience. It might not be the same exact thing. It might not be the teacher. It could have been the boss or their spouse or parent, but they can relate to that experience as least the people who will be drawn to you will relate to that experience.
Beautiful. Cool. Thank you so much. so these are the seedlings that you help your clients find, and then you help them. creating infrastructures, scaffolding to help them, the trees grow and there are fruits in the end. And then Tara here is the Ted talk that I always wanted to say, have to impact one a half.
Yes. That's beautiful. do you want to talk a little bit about community because I know that you're deeply into men's work relationship work as well. In addition to the individual work that you do with clients, you want to talk about.
Sure. I'd love to, and so I'll just share broadly and if there's something specific comes up, just fire away, the, we recognize that, Tracy and I teach this thing called the integrated leadership sweet spot.
And what it is, you've got the languaging, the outward expression that you, the way you lead in the world, who you show up as in the world. And then you've got the inner experience, which is largely, we talked earlier about the conditioning, how our nervous system records information and, and how, what meaning we make of it.
And then the third piece is this structures of support. how do we support and create the conditions around us that support our being our fullest expression in the world. and community is such an important part of that. Now there's all sorts of research that indicates that the 10 people you hang out with the most or invest the most time with, if you average their annual incomes, your approximate your income, for instance, and the social dialogue, for instance, the conversation, the things you talk about the most, if you polled the people you spend the most time with.
That will approximate what you talked about the most. So community, the people you invest time with actually play a huge role in influencing who you are in the world. and I think largely people are not conscious of that fact. They take a lot for granted. I know I do. I don't think about it all the time, but I know when I think about it.
Oh yeah. The people that's why as well, like you get to a certain point in your life where you actually choose who you hang out with. You actually choose not by saying, Oh, you're not good enough. I'm not going to be your friend anymore. It just happens that where you want to go will determine over time.
The people you hang out with the people you socialize with, the people you rely on for support and encouragement people you seek advice from will change. If you're on, if you're conscious of the path you're on.
so I'll share this with you, then you can reflect back, what criteria that you use.
So for me, I think about, yes, the average of the five people I spend the most time with. I also think about the network of conversations, right? What kind of conversations we tend to have, topically. So that's something that I'm very conscious about. And what I'm interested in and for example, what license, Do we all aspire to have? So if you want to make you work 20 hours a day, so you have a billion dollar business and exit, and then you can do it again. That's not the kind of conversation that I know enjoy. Having lived. That lifestyle is no longer something that interests me per se.
but more about. You know the song for a life of fulfillment and joy and success. All at the same time, that's something that I want to engage in. And so I'm curious to know what criteria do you use as a way to consciously and intentionally cultivate these network of conversation that you want.
Yeah. Thank you. I love that you use the word, the conversations because Tracy and I are passionate about, they, we really truly believe that the conversations of elevating the level of the conversations that we're having has a positive impact in the world. I think I shared with you when we first met that, our stated vision, our stated purpose is to lead enough conversation leaders.
Now there's a lot of talking to others about thought leadership. We want to create conversation leaders to elevate the vibrational frequency of conversations in the world to the so potently. So to such an extent that the artificial intelligence is actually affected by love. that's our mission.
and so this idea of criteria, I would say that we naturally gravitate. I naturally gravitate toward people who, for whom their spiritual path is important to them. It doesn't have to be like their most important thing. It's just, when I'm talking about my spiritual journey, almost invariably, I'm going to talk about my experiences relative to that.
And that's either interesting to someone or it's not, and if it's not interesting, are we really going to have that much in common? perhaps paradoxically, I'm also fascinated by how that expresses itself in the commercial world through businesses and through speaking and training and this and that.
So it's interesting to me to see how, wealth and prosperity and abundance it is. It interwoven in, into all of that, how it is that someone can be deeply spiritual and wildly financially abundant. That's fascinating to me. it doesn't appear to me to be hypocritical. that's true.
Although there are many examples where it is,
would be an example of that. I'm curious who is openly spiritual and also do very well in the material world.
not to put yourself on the spot, cause that's something that I think about, right? who can I point you and say. Hey, has certain celebrity, whatever.
look at them as an example. Yeah.
Yeah. I know all of the people I hang out with and Tracy and I hang out with didn't that category. And so I don't want to, I don't want to name names, but I do know. So let's say if I had to pick a celebrity, someone who I have for whom I have a great deal of respect, I've met him a few times and had conversations his book.
ageless body timeless mind for me, chain just integrated with my Phillip philosophy and no knowledge of biology. Deepak Chopra is a great example. Someone who by everything I've seen. And again, I don't hang out with them on a daily basis, but everything I've seen, he's a deeply spiritual person and he's very successful financially and I've never really talked to anybody who.
Who hasn't had that experience. I, there are colleagues, people I know who that's not true. there may be wildly successful and they might proclaim spirituality, but they don't totally live that vibe. That to me is troublesome. We don't hang out, so for me, walking the walk and talking the talk is really important, even when that's hard.
So curious to know, also in terms of cultivating a relationship that works, Tracy and you guys are deeply, immersed in their work individually, as well as relationship wise.
are there tools of relationships that you've come across that you say, Hey, this is really useful to cultivate a conscious relationship? for example, some people may say, Hey, David data's work is awesome or radical honesty is fantastic. Or, conscious leadership framework is phenomenal, right? All those are different tools that one could use as way to cultivate two egos coming together to foster this third entity called a marriage or relationship.
I love that you even brought attention to that third entity. I think that's super important recognizing that, that when a relationship is formed, the relationship itself has its own needs and requirements for making maintenance.
And, oftentimes, there's also a loss of individual sovereignty. That when someone merges with another, they feel like they no longer have the right to their own sovereignty, which I think is, is a loss, a great loss for both partners, the relationship as well as the world, because, in order to, in my experience, after a failed first marriage and so far a successful second marriage and really passionately working with couples who are particularly on purpose together, we call it partnership in purpose and what, this attention to respecting the needs to sovereign individual is critical. And so the, and then. Attention to the needs of the partnership require what we call occasional uncomfortable conversations, difficult conversations need to be navigated because agreements need to be expressed.
There's so many, we go into relationships with so many assumptions. And so there's a whole set of Aksia that we could quote. But then the one piece is that I would say is the willingness to have uncomfortable conversations so that the sovereignty of each individual is respected always.
And one of the, one of the things that often is so problematic for couples, especially, maybe not, especially, I was going to say, especially newly coupled people, but it's not true if people could be with each other 20 years and still have old patterns come up. And so we have this saying here in our household that it's not the partner, it's the pattern.
And so when I'm frustrated with Tracy or she's stressed, frustrated with me, chances are good. That it's not really the thing I did that annoys her so much. It's the thing I did triggered an old pattern. That feels true for her. For instance, I might do something and she might go into the pattern of you don't respect me because that's a wound or an old experience, or an old patterning that she might have, or I might, she might do something and I might go into reaction and think you're disrespecting me, or you're not you've you're criticizing me because that's an old pattern and a wound for me.
And when we recognize, if we get a tiny moment of clarity, Oh, it's not the partner. It's the pattern. I'm not actually annoyed at Tracy, my best friend and my beloved I'm annoyed that thing she did with no intention of disrespecting me, triggered my feeling of being disrespected. We should totally different experiences.
If I can get enough of a moment of freedom from the pattern from the reaction to recognize that's true, or one of us can, if one of us can get there and recognize it's not the partner, it's the pattern. Then we give each other a chance to navigate our way through it, without it blowing up or recovering from it, blowing up, which happened.
So tactically, I want to put, as boots on the ground, tactically, you, when you get into that state, Both sides are triggered or one side trigger it. And that triggers the other side, which happens a lot. if you're in any kind of relationship, that this happens, another part of the choice that you made.
Which is a beautiful part as well. So do you then say time out. I'm going to call, take some time, meditate by myself and then I'll come back when I'm neutralized and ready, or you're going to time out, let me go call my friend, my sponsor or whatever. And then just like vent, I purge everything or, Hey timeout, let's call a arbitrator, a therapist so they can hold that space of neutrality.
So tactically, what do you do in the, in those moments?
So great. we, this is, first of all, I want to say for two things, one, I want to really appreciate you constantly bringing us back to boots on the ground. It's I really admire that and it's valuable. the second thing is I want to say it's an ongoing process.
This relationship it requires is a commitment in my experience that. all of the examples of long term, healthy, nurturing relationships, everyone acknowledges that it's a work in progress very rarely. Haven't heard. Oh yeah. We've been together for 50 years and it's been effortless.
Okay. I at the, that
anyone that ever said those words to me, I like are automatically my mind. I'm like bullshit.
I'm aware enough
to know that's just not how life works. The beauty of a relationship of being in business of self work is in. The highest of highs and the lowest of lows there's there is no, we're just in constant ascent, ecstasy I just I've never met her authentic versa like that.
So I don't believe it when somebody tells me
that. if it's true, God bless you. if you found that. Wow, awesome. I'm not even going to bother asking what's the secret because I know I wouldn't be able to duplicate it. so it would be uninteresting. It wouldn't be, Oh, you found the perfect partner and everything's wonderful and peaceful all the time.
That's completely uninteresting. So it's worth. It's
a much more generous than I am. Yes.
I wouldn't want to talk ill of someone and people are listening.
Yeah. Yeah. That's a good point. Good point.
so first of all, it requires commitment and to go into any, to go into something as profound as a longterm relationship, as a marriage or a partnership with an expectation that it will be ease, completely effortless.
It just sets yourself up. You're setting yourself up for disappointment and conflict. so that's one and the second thing is yes, the I, the objective is always to get to peace. Tracy, and I feel like we, we have a philosophy that love is always looking for itself. And so even in conflict, it's love trying to find its way back to itself through the other person.
And so if that's the case, if I can remember that it's much easier. Oh, I know you didn't mean to trigger me and no, you're just wanting to connect with me, but I'm so triggered by that. ideally I would have the self-awareness to step through that. And I get there, but oftentimes that's the power of the trigger is that's the point I can't get there because my conscious self isn't is offline.
My reaction is online and the key for crazy eye is the first person to become aware of it. The first ego to leave the room. You know what I mean? Not physically, but energetic. Yeah. it we've heard it say who wants to be the hero we heard, Eben pagan and his wife. And he just shared that with us recently, the first person who wants to be the hero.
And what's really, beautiful about that is I might not consciously want to be the hero, but when I become aware that, Oh shit, I went into reaction. All right, this is my beloved. Just trying to connect with me. She may be having a reaction. She's not trying to trigger me purposely, whatever. if I have, if I get aware of that first, I will try to breathe and I'll just stop, like being aggressive with my energy.
And I'll just say, hold on, what do you need? What is it that you need? And. And the energy will either shift immediately or very shortly after that. Like there may still be some vehemence in the pipeline that has to come out and then it'll be like, Oh, you're trying like, Oh, you're trying. Okay, I'll stop.
And we take turns doing that, honestly. So it's not always me who gets there first. It's not always Tracy who gets there first and, that grace there's like a moment we call it peace in the interval. So it's the first person to become aware, Oh, there's an interval here. There's aggression in this space.
But if I can bring peace to this, I can stop. And the first person to bring peace in the interval will usually stop it.
So I have a question is there's multiple, obviously there's no one right way to do it, but just multiple schools of thought, right? So one school of thought is, Hey, the couples have process each other, trying to be that space holder for each other's humanity.
And, Whatever they need to say to event all day excess energy to get back to love. So that's one school of thought. Another school of thought is actually have some kind of buffer, some kind of a release valve. Let's say, men will have like his men's group or a woman would have their, a woman's group.
So then they get to vent, get back to neutrality before coming back to, sovereignty again.
I'm curious to know, what's your take on that? she should like, yeah. How do you guys operationalize? Do you have your own release valve before come back to neutral again? Or do you do your best to just do it yourself without, the help of a men's group?
yeah, that's a great question. because until you develop until the individual develops a sense of age, A facility with a particular strategy for getting back to neutral. it is so valuable to have that help of somebody not in the partnership because somebody not in the partnership.
Won't come to that question with all that charge. The men's group or a therapist or a coach, or a best friend who's on call or texts. Like I need to get this off my chest or whatever, is super helpful. Because we always say Tracy and I, you can't your husband or wife, can't be your therapist.
it's just too, it's fraught with. familiarity breeds, contempt. It's fraught with, taking the sizzle out of a relationship. if I, if, if we have to coach each other, if I, if we, if I've done, if I've just vented life's frustrations at my wife, am I going to want to make love with her afterwards?
Or is she going to want to make love with me? Is that, or what will we have to go through to purge that out of the space before we can create intimacy again. So it doesn't feel great to be that, but I'll say once you get good at moving that energy, we might say Tracy, and I will say, I'm going to take five minutes or 10 minutes or an hour.
I've got to go move this. I don't want to direct it towards you. And I don't necessarily need to call my buddy, but I might call my buddy. oftentimes I, if I go into meditation, I was so very quickly and I'm no Saint in sometimes takes me quite awhile. I can regain responsibility and be like, Oh my God, I totally see how I did that.
I took it off the rails. I own it. I go back to owning it and we reconnect. and I've been at it awhile. I've been doing the work a long time. So at first it may take a lot of support, which is again where mentorship, community structured for support. In that regard, for instance, we have what we call a council.
We have two other couples who, with whom we counsel every week, the six of us, and we have made agreements amongst the six of us to hold each other's relationship as a very high priority. So if Tracy and I are in conflict, for instance, we'll go to that council and say, help us sort this out and holding the relationship as the most important the other couples will ask and we'll support each other that way.
That has been brilliant. Yeah.
How did you pick those two other couples out of curiosity? And then I asked this question more metacognitively right. Is let's say someone listening to this and that sounds like a fantastic idea. Let me just go down the street and pick random two couples.
Yeah, But that's the natural, like people want the easiest way to get this done. I know that doesn't work. So what are some of the criteria to select the right space for your sacred marriage
too? Great. A great question. the shortest answer is two other couples who hold their marriage is sacred as we hold out.
That's the shortest answer now for us. We have, it's a little involved. we, these happened to be the two couples with whom we invest the most time. We're all in similar industries. We all serve similar clientele. So we have very similar paths. We're authors and speakers and coaches and business people.
we've also, really the process of the way we support each other. We have invested in articulating and codified and we've created a community around it has called Eden world. And it's a beautiful community of other couples. Like-minded couples who desire to be in conversation with like-minded couples to support one another.
and Eden world for instance, was born out of the relationship of the six of us supporting each other's. Couplehood
no kidding. That's awesome. Oh, that's great, man.
literally hundreds of people in a similar conversation meeting virtually now, virtually and pairing off into groups of six, three couples supporting one another as counselors.
Our accounts. So we meet every week. we enjoy that. That's actually what started, like we saw the profound nature of that conversation. We said, we need to share this technology with people and eden world was born.
I love that. What a difference you get to make for generations to come?
I, I feel the truth of that. and we just had a gathering this past weekend, a virtual gathering.
I saw that. Yeah, that's awesome. Thank you for hopping on this podcast. In spite of the long week in, they, you just
have how much
energy it takes to hold that event and hold that space for people. So
It's also, don't you feel that. I call it investing myself on purpose. Don't you feel that it may be physically tiring, like being supporting people and doing this hosting podcasts and all of this, but it's also recharging all the time. Yeah,
I am. I'm the biggest fan of my own podcasts.
I listened to my podcast multiple times.
That's awesome. I love that. You shared that with me that, because I think I totally get what you mean. It's not egoic. It's not. Oh, aren't I great. Listen to me.
I love that
I could be at the position of a listener rather than the host, Can actually listen to it differently. Every time a lesson is like, Oh, this guest actually said this thing, I misinterpreted it on the call, but now I can hear the depth of what they're trying to say, et cetera.
Beautiful. I love it. I love that you shared it and it would it would be weird if you didn't want to, not weird, whatever that's judgment too, but the fact that you want to listen to it, Is like it says, you're as much interested in. In it, as you are creating it, it's not a, exercise of your ego, so to speak.
So let me go a little bit deeper on the couples dynamics here. So again, let's use, sparring as an example as a, as an analog, right? So some people believe some couples believe that no holds bar, no roles. Let's just fight it out, right? No mask, no mystery. The truth, radical honesty is basically in that camp, right?
Just everything lay on the table. That's my interpretation. Radical honesty. And know some other schools of thought is no, you want to maintain that polarity. Keep your mask on. you don't want to show everything. So that way you can keep that polarity and maintain cultivate that the space of safety, right?
that's a line you don't cross, you don't take your mask off and make the partner, your woman feel unsafe. So curious to know your thoughts, using inspiring. Is it an example? Is it no holds barred? everything lay on the mat, right? Or some rules or more like boxing lines, rules, and nobody hits below the belt.
Like where are you in that spectrum?
for me, the idea of, so this is, this feels very personal for me, the idea of sparring with my beloved, it feels a little in congruent, for instance, energy, just for me, I, it may be valuable to, for two people who can embody that energetic safely.
That may be very healthy for instance, Even in, not just in conversing about, the relationship dynamic, but even if sexually, that dynamic might be fun and entertaining for someone who can hold that energetic safely. And that's really important because for me, if I come with warrior energy, if my beloved isn't in her warrior energy, for instance, if she's in reaction or which is likely if we're fighting, if we're arguing, which is in her wound, then she's expressing a very young version of herself.
Yeah, just as in my wound, it's my six year old throwing a tantrum, I'm not getting what I want or you're not listening to me or you're not valuing me, or I'm feeling less about myself or I'm feeling unworthy. if she's in her wound, for instance, in her five-year-old girl and I come to her as warrior, that could be a terrifying experience.
And I wouldn't want to create that experience for my beloved. And what makes sense, does that resonate? Yeah.
now that you're talking about it, perhaps that's not the best analogy.
it may be really healthy if we're both in our warrior and it's we have to vent this. Like I know a couple, for instance, he's just a loving kindness guy and very rarely will he lose his temper and his wife has fire in her. And when she brings her warrior, he doesn't know how to handle that sometimes. And what he'll do is what he's learned is meet the warrior with his warrior and they wrestle.
And they're both physical expressors.
So when they wrestle, it will often very quickly and up as real connection and intimacy. I feel they'll find each other, looking at each other's eyes and they'll break down into each other's arms and it'll be quite beautiful. But if she brings her warrior and he doesn't it's not pretty. And if he brings his warrior and she doesn't she gets hurt, And so if the warriors can meet as warriors, it sounds like, it might be healthy to move all that energy and just express it and have it out there other than lock it up in our tissues, that could, that wouldn't be healthy, but it would have to be a very intentional thing.
because yeah, it just there's a lot when people's hearts are involved there, you have to tread lightly tread carefully intentional. So are
there archetypes? okay, so let's say the warrior sparring is not the best metaphor per se. Are there archetypes that will help our listeners or will help me understand how to meet the different energy.
So for example, the King magician warrior se, or whatever Africa, the fourth archetype, right? that would be similar architects or you meet them where they're at, perhaps the archetype that you use
mentally. Yeah. There, this is actually, this is a great question because this, Depending on who you ask, there may be four archetypes.
There may be 10, there may be five, but I know that it really depends on each other's patterns. if my pattern is to get really defensive and aggressive, and my partner's pattern is to hide and escape, Who I bring to the conversation or who I give the microphone to. We like to say, who's got the mic.
Is it that little inner child who, who is going to express in different ways? Or is it my conscious self and very methodical and data driven? this doesn't make any sense. And this is, or is it my highest self? this divine spiritual aspect of me that. Realizes that we're both just love and trying to find our way back to each other.
the archetypes, yeah. archetypes in and of themselves. Aren't really my jam, it's but I can share that King for instance, when I'm in my King, I don't take things personally. I don't take Tracy's upset personally. I take it personally that I want to care for her. And I want to connect with her, but I don't take what she's saying as a criticism of me, because if I'm in my King, I'm confident certain of my truth and who I am.
and there are other archetypes that I'm a little, I'm not as familiar with. I don't play with magician as much. I don't play with jestors as much. and again, Warrior's something for me. I explore, in other contexts, like I explore with my men friends, we explore warrior a lot because it feels safer to do so with each other than it does with my partner.
does that make sense? Cause I, I don't want to, I don't want to experiment with my rage necessarily with Tracy. Yeah. Yeah, because I want her to feel safe, unless she's ready to hold that space, when she can hold it beautifully. if I prepare her for that, Yeah, that's beautiful.
Thank you for that, George, do you have a few minutes for some rapid fire and then we'll wrap. Is
that cool? Sure. Yeah. Awesome. I can't believe that like we're wrapping up already. Like I've been so enjoying this conversation with you brother.
Thank you. I appreciate that. Hi. Hi phrases from master coach George.
Okay. Rapid fire questions. movies have changed the way you look at reality.
I heart Huckabees. what the bleep do we know? Goodfellas? Rudy. Beautiful.
Yeah. Any given Sunday? So lots of sports, football stuff. I love that. What's your definition of purpose?
That thing you can't not do.
What's your definition of fulfillment,
grace for yourself, knowing that you've invested your time and energy and resources. Serving your purpose.
Thank you. What's your definition of wealth?
My definition of wealth, the inverse of regret.
I like that. No one has ever answered that question where they inverse before.
Yeah. it's a by contrast, I like that wealth is, yeah. I could talk about that for a long time. And it goes very question.
The last five years, when you believes behavior or habit has most improved your life.
four years ago. I was told that, leukemia that I thought was gone from my life forever, had returned to my body. and that the best course of action was to immediately returned to the hospital for a seven day 24 hour infusion of chemotherapy therapy, which knowing what I had gone through before was it's an unpleasant experience.
it's painful and scary and, yeah, hard knowing going into that, I was grateful that I had developed and maintained a meditation practice. So the discipline, the habit was reinforced that my habit of meditation had served me well, because I've went into the hospital immediately and began meditating who brought in the so Fazio tone music and played that in my room, 24 hours a day, I meditated on the chemotherapy, my wife and I would pray over the medicine when they brought it in, before they hooked it up to my machine every day, we'd prayed on the medicine.
And we said, this is light. Literally we know from the quantum physics of it, this medicine is light. And it enters my body with the sole purpose of healing. And we know that light can transform darkness into light. And so let this body come in, let this medicine come into my body, bring light to the dark places and heal and had I not had that practice of meditation and prayer.
I don't know that I would have met that moment with so much resourcefulness.
It's beautiful. I love that. You can do that with anything really right. Food drink we
do with everything. Yeah. That's
true. Thank you for that. That's really practical.
Thank you. Thank you.
Okay. other than your own books, what is the book or the books that you've given most as a gift and why?
Great question, love this question. The books I've given most as a gift, think and grow rich by Napoleon Hill and the science of getting rich by Wallace Wattles and I, and why is not because they have, they're talking about money, but because they're talking about being a particular way is so passionate about it, actually that since the book, the science of getting rich is in the public domain, this just this past six months during COVID, I undertook to rewrite the science of getting rich and publishing it soon under the new science of getting rich.
And that would be really sneer. I'm so passionate about the way of being that is advocated, that I've given. I can't even, I've given hundreds of copies of that book. Yeah.
What's now that you've opened up with that, what's one thing that's being taught in the book that really just this book gets it.
What's one thing that, you know,
yeah. I love the question. because there was a lot of conversation in the social consciousness about the law of attraction. This idea that what we think about is made manifest in the physical world, which is true. I'm certain of the truth of that. when the conversation around the law of attraction and manifesting and vision boards and all this stuff, what is missing that this book addressed, why I'm so passionate about it is the idea that our prayers are not answered while we're praying.
Our prayers are answered and using the word prayer very broadly in a non-religious sense when we're working with the feeling of fulfillment in our heart, neither the prayer is the thing that manifest it, nor is the work. The thing that manifests it, but rather the feeling of accomplishment that we hold in our heart while we're working.
That one piece that the feeling is the transmission. The feeling is the request of the universe, the feeling of complete fulfillment and why that's so important is because it touches on a truth that I believe with every cell in my body, a thing outside of us is the source of our fulfillment. No money, no person, no place, no condition that the fulfillment of our desires resides.
In the desire itself and the desire itself resides within us.
What a beautiful way to wrap it. you essentially summarized why my focus on the experience of joy and fulfillment in the work that we do versus chasing the achievement. Some people find their satisfaction, the chase, to me, that's vacuous, that's empty.
It doesn't lead to a place, but an experience of fulfillment and joy a while. During whatever task a hand is the source of wealth and riches
beautifully said, and I love how you said that chase is vacuous because the problem or the challenge with that is as long as you're chasing everything is great, but the moment you stop chasing it's empty again.
And the, and true fulfillment, I believe in just like true wealth, is this to be sustainable. Is really exists when you're stopping to because that, Oh yes, my gratitude, the gratitude I hold in my heart, I'm holding it there, whether I'm doing or sleeping or playing or whatever. And so I love that description that you just shared.
Georgia want to take a minute to just truly acknowledge you for sharing your heart, sharing your energetic transmission with all of us, it's palpable on this end, that you just nothing but love and support for anyone who was on their journey. And, thank you so much for sharing.
we tackle many different subjects where eight would tackle the tension between adversity versus grateful. then we tackle where we talked about rather the relationship dynamics, right? The community aspect of it. And it also talked about what it actually takes to fulfill our desire.
it's in the experience of gratitude and fulfillment that actually sends that transmission in manifesting our desire. So thank you so much for just willing to dance with me.
it's been an absolute pleasure, so enjoyed it. Hope we'll do it again.
Absolutely. Thank you so much