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8 Podcasts to Listen to

I’ve come to that point in my life where I listen to more podcasts than music.

It really gets me to listen to other people’s ideas and opinions that matter to me.

It also gives me a perspective that may be different from mine.

It’s the new age version of watching the news or talk shows without all the bells, whistles, and bull crap.

I have a rotation of ones I love.

I thought I would share those with you today.

Becoming Bulletproof with Tracy O’Malley

This is my number one go to podcasts for many reasons.

First, what hooked me was how she talked about the evolution of Howard Stern in the first episode.

Second, how she shares the Enneagram.

If you don’t know what the enneagram is, it’s a nine personality type system of getting to know yourself that’s been around for centuries.

That may be an oversimplification, but the self-discovery is fascinating.

The interviews are spectacular.

Tracy interviews in a way that is more like a conversation.

The Mindset Mentor with Rob Dial

This is the OG podcast that got me started on podcasts.

I love this one because Rob likes to keep things as concise as possible while dropping mind blowing tips.

Usually he gives out the advice or wisdom in fifteen minutes or less.

It’s the perfect podcast for a commute to work or to school or wherever it is you need to get to in life.

ProjectME with Tiffany Carter

I actually found this podcast through her interview with Tracy O’Malley.

I love how unfiltered the truth and advice is given on this show.

Tiffany doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to her ideas and how those ideas help people.

She is also very open about her life experiences and how those experiences made her who she is today.

The Tim Ferris Show

I recently discovered this podcast from an email newsletter I get from Zach Spear, founder of MLM Rebels.

What hooked me was his interview with Sia.

I always thought she was weird. The good kind of weird.

This interview confirms that I love Sia and Tim’s style of interviewing people.

They can be long, but the conversations never miss a beat or get boring.

There are lots of nuggets of wisdom and it just feels more conversational than like an interview.

Tim also has a compelling email newsletter that breaks down what he was up to that week as far as his podcasts interviews, reflections on quotes, and books he happened to be reading.

On Purpose with Jay Shetty

This is another podcast where the interviews can get conversational with nuggets of wisdom all throughout.

It’s no surprise to me because Jay Shetty actually used to be a monk.

I think that’s part of what makes his perspective interesting to me.

He is out here asking the real questions and he helps you to dig a little deeper.

And when I say “asking the real questions” I mean it.

Jay doesn’t piddle around with surface level stuff it makes you dig deep and think hard.

The Ziglar Show with Kevin Miller

My love of Zig Ziglar and his wisdom is some of my favorite stuff.

They incorporate that wisdom throughout while addressing topics such as having dreams so big they scare you.

Unf*ck Your Brain with Kara Lowenthal

I basically love how she calls the listeners her chickens and she has a really soothing voice.

That’s not all I love though.

There is so much empowerment in this podcast.

She talks a lot about situations that kind of mess us up and how to overcome them.

Greatness Radio with Les Brown

If you don’t know Les Brown, you should because he is a legend.

Most of these podcasts I got into after I stepped in the field of an entrepreneur.

Les has guided many people to greatness including our main man who shaped our childhoods, Walt Disney.

Les just reminds you of how much greatness is already in each of us and how to cultivate it.

What are some of your favorite podcasts?

Until next time.



Are you asking yourself the real questions?

RuPaul is right.

The struggle is real, and it will continue to be real.

So, I’ve started asking myself the following questions;

“What pain are you willing to sustain? What do you want to struggle for?”

These are questions created and addressed by Mark Manson.

This man actually asks the real questions and some of these questions are really hard.

The basics behind this is we often share what it is that we want.

The things we share are often about having the perfect life, but it doesn’t address what we are willing to do to get it.

You can read more about this in the blog post here, or buy his book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck here.

Recently, I’ve come into a transitional phase in my life.

One where I have to address “Who am I and what do I value?”

So far I’ve been answering this question based on past experiences and expectations outside of myself.

The truth is that some of the things I want to do might seem strange.

I recently got a job as a remote customer service person.

Basically like a call center for your home.

I’m excited for this because I’ll still get to help people, even though a lot of them may be angry.

Teaching middle school, heck, even kindergarten has prepared me for this.

Now, before you get all judge-y about call center jobs let me tell you a story.

It’s about three masons, putting a building together.

All three of them are doing the same job.

The first one had the mindset of, “I’m just laying some bricks.”

The second one said, “I’m making a building.”

The third one said, “I’m building a house of God.”

The difference between the three is this; the first one saw what he was doing as a job, the second one a career, and the third one saw what he was doing as his passion.

I want to reiterate that they were all doing the same type of work.

It’s about the mindset behind the work.

Angela Duckworth covers this in the chapter on Passion from her book Grit.

When we talk about passion, we see it as something outside of what we are already doing and it comes from a place of lack.

The place we should start with is what we already do, what we like to do, and how we can use those things we like to do.

Then, we can channel them into what we already do or find other places that those things would be helpful.

So when it comes to doing this new job…

The thing that most excites me is the combination of these things while helping people understand the fine print.

If you know me, you know I read EVERYTHING.

I get particular joy reading through health plans.

If someone is struggling with anything that requires combing through the fine print, I’ll go through and help them figure out if they are justified and what they can do.

So the pain I’m willing to sustain is to help people resolve issues with medical insurance jargon.

Do I think I will be building houses of God doing this? That remains to be seen.

I’m so pumped about this, though.

That may sound strange to some people, but I’m no longer basing my life on the opinions of others.

That’s how I lost myself in the first place, and now have to struggle with questions like this in my 30’s.

Of course I’m learning that doesn’t even matter because no matter what our age we are transitioning in one way or another.

What is it that you are willing to struggle for?

Until next time.



(Note: If this spoke to you or you know someone else who needs to hear that they should just let themselves enjoy the things they actually want to struggle through, give it a share. I am also not getting anything out of sharing Mark’s stuff. I just think he is asking the real questions and putting the unfiltered truth into the universe. Seriously, read his stuff. The same goes for Angela Duckworth.)

What is the meaning of self-discipline?

Have you ever tried to start doing something new, but find yourself in a cycle of excitement and then disappointment?

If you ever feel you lack self-discipline, hold on for this series on self-discipline.

Today I’m going to cover the meaning of self-discipline.

Let me first define self-discipline by explaining what self-discipline is not.

  • It’s not punitive.

When we think of the word discipline, more often than not it has a negative connotation.

Sometimes we feel like in order to be disciplined we have to punish ourselves or make ourselves suffer in some way.

This brings me to my next point.

  • Self-discipline is not linked to your morality (or it shouldn’t be).

If you mess up and fall of the wagon you are not a bad person.

This type of thinking is actually self-sabotaging.

Whether or not you choose to eat celery doesn’t determine the type of person you are.

The amount of time you spend in the gym versus sitting on the couch is not directly linked to whether or not you are a good or bad person.

  • Self-discipline is not shaming.

This is related to the morality point because those negative thoughts you have come from a place of shame.

While negative reinforcement can work, it will only work for a short period of time.

  • It’s not just sheer will power alone.

If you hate what you are trying to be disciplined about, when the going gets tough that’s when it stops.

If you are trying to do something out of self-loathing or because you want to be like someone else, that won’t work long term either.

One of our main motivations in life is to avoid pain.

So cultivating self-discipline cannot come from a place of punishment, self-hate, shame, envy or will power.

So what IS self-discipline?

Well, I am going to start with definitions from a couple of dictionaries.

I like using official text in my analyses so bear with me here.

The Mariam-Webster dictionary defines self-discipline as correction or regulation of oneself for the sake of improvement.

The Oxford Dictionary states that self-discipline is the ability to control one’s feelings and overcome one’s weaknesses; the ability to pursue what one thinks is right despite temptations to abandon it.

In order to accomplish either definition of self-discipline effectively is to start from a place of self-acceptance.

Self-acceptance isn’t just accepting the sunny side of yourself, but the dark side of the moon as well.

Then a continuation from a place of self-awareness.

What do you really want?

If it’s not running, forcing yourself to be a runner isn’t going to work long term.

Especially if you don’t just dislike running, but you hate it.

It’s okay, I’ve been there. I wanted to run a marathon at one point, but I came to the realization that I can’t stand running.

I found that I don’t really care to understand pace and all of the things that go into running effectively and with intention.

When I let go of running and just started dancing (setting up the PS4 camera again), I had more fun.

The one thing I consistently did growing up was play Dance Dance Revolution with my friends or doing a belly dancing class.

Because I am aware of this, I found a sustainable way for me to do cardio and enjoy doing cardio.

For some people it’s the opposite.

The point is you have to know where you stand with what you are trying to accomplish.

I am aware that I am a dancer, not a runner and I accept that.

If the weakness you want to improve requires an action you love doing you’ll stick to it a lot better.

There is a lot more I want to cover on this topic, so catch my next point on why self-discipline is important.

Until next time.


Top 5 Tips for Writing Goals, and the Mindset Necessary to Achieve Them

First of all, I want to give some updates. [I started writing this blog post on Sunday, but I neglected to account for the madness of moving and getting internet set up.]

The movers are coming today. I will do a video showcasing my new office.

On Tuesday I start my LLC paperwork for my proofreading business and make plans to start up my violin studio again.

I’m leaning back on my network marketing business. I was pretty gung-ho on it reaching out to 50 people a day, which turned out to be about 1,500 people in a two month span. I’m still doing the business, but I really enjoy the products and having fun connecting with my team. As with anything my tribe will come.

That said, before I go into the 5 tips, I want to talk about mindset.

I firmly believe in personal development and thought work. However, in order to be successful self-acceptance has to come first.

This means you have to take time to learn to accept the negative parts of yourself.

The basic of this is that all of you is perfect the way you are, the good and the bad. Once you’re good with that, the goals are to simply amplify the parts you like or improve on some of your areas that you determine might be room for growth.

Here are your 5 tips for goal setting.

Tip #1- Define what you want There are at least seven different areas of your life, health, family, career, finance, spiritual, personal development and hobbies.

Think about where you would like to be in 10 years. If you want to go really deep, and far into the future think about what impact you would like to have had on the world after you have kicked the bucket.

However you decide to start, just write. Don’t worry about spelling, grammar, etc. at this point, just put what it is that you want or what you want to have accomplished on paper. In education we call this a “brain dump.”

Don’t over think it either, because I am going to let you in on a little secret that most self-help things don’t cover.

There is no shame in being ordinary. If everyone could be Oprah or Martha Stewart that would be cool, but being a regular person in the grand scheme of things is also cool.

If your life vision is to grow tomatoes in your backyard, do it.

If you love your call center job, and you want to be the best darn customer service agent there ever was, by golly do it.

If you love your job at Walmart, be the best Walmart associate you can be.

If you want to be a hot shot entrepreneur, and you’re ready to swim with the sharks, do that.

Even if you just want to be mediocre at them, that’s cool too. It’s okay to be average and do “ordinary” things. 

Goal setting is just the rudder on the boat, whether you want to be Oprah or you love your job as a custodian, goals give you direction.

This will determine your vision and values. This exercise I have taken from two separate books. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey and The Subtle Art of Not Giving a **** by Mark Manson.

Tip #2- Translate what you wrote into SMART Goals

The purpose of this tip is to give your brain dump more detail.
SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-based.

Now that you have decided to grow your tomato garden, how big do you wnat it? How many tomato plants do you want in it? What supplies do you need? Are the amounts indicated in the previous questions achievable? Do you actually like growing tomatoes? What is a reasonable amount of time to execute your plan?

If you want to grow tomatoes in your backyard, unless you’re really good at tetris having 1,000 tomato plants is not achievable.

The A in SMART I think is important because it helps you to be realistic. If you set unrealistic goals, (like putting 1,000 tomato plants in a suburban backyard), you’re only going to set yourself up for disappointment.

Speaking of setting yourself up for success, I’m going to lead into the next tip…

Tip #3- Reverse Engineer It

Look at all of your long term smart goals. Ask yourself, what do I need to do in 5 years to reach my goal? 4 years? 1 year? 6 months?

Continuing with the tomato garden example, now that you know where you’re going in that first month, you may want to read about how exactly one goes about growing tomatoes.

Once you figure that out, set a date on the calendar for the planting season to yield a great tomato crop. Then think about the supplies you’ll need and where you need to purchase them.

Tip #4- Take action on your plan.

Now that you have clear direction on where you want to go with your life goal, take action.

I’m going to continue with the tomato garden example, because we are in too deep now.

Prepare your yard. Before you get to growing season you have to mark out where you would like to grow them, weed the area, turn the soil, and get stakes and that chicken wire type stuff.

Close to planting season buy your tomato seeds.

Monitor your crop over time. If you did not yeild what you expected review what may have not gone well, and figure out what you will do different next tomato planting season.

By your 5th year, you should have a decent sized suburban tomato garden, and you may even be selling them to your neighbors.

This may not have been in your original plan, but your tomato garden turns into a lucritive business and so you have to start thinking about expanding your garden.

Tip #5- Stay consistent

This is the tough part. Once the excitement wears down from your initial plan, there are going to be days where you don’t want to follow the plan.

You might even think that you have to be motivated to continue on.

However, sometimes simply taking the action (even though you may not want to) will help get you motivated, so the motivation process may actually work in reverse.

The point is, if your tomato crop fails that first season, but you are determined by year 5 to have a thriving tomato garden, don’t give up.

Try again. Occasionally it is good to review the master plan and make adjustments on your time or what you want to do also, but if you stay engaged over time, you’ll get to your goal.

Failure is a stepping stone to success. You may trip and face plant on some of those stones, but whatever you do, get back up and keep going.

I can tell you I have reinvented my blog at least 5 times by now, and it may get reinvented again.

However, I am sticking to it, and that’s what matters.

I hope this helps you with whatever you decide to do.

Classically yours,