MGU 63 | Conversation About Money

 

When we think about becoming a millionaire, we tend to start listing down the things we want to have and the things we want to do. It is as if being a millionaire is a ticket to being free, seeing no limitations to getting everything we ever wanted. May 20th is the National Be a Millionaire Day. In this episode, fittingly, Jason Wrobel and Whitney Lauritsen take us into a raw conversation about money and the hard lessons they have learned. When does money become good or bad? Why are many wealthy people still not happy? How is capitalism shaping our desires and our society? Is hard work really the only way to become rich? Are we a failure if we are not wealthy? Jason and Whitney reflect and answer all these questions and more, reminding us that there is more to wanting to be rich than meets the eye.

Listen to the podcast here:

A Raw Conversation About Money: Seeing Wealth Beyond What Meets The Eye

Jason, I have a question for you. When you think of being a millionaire, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?

All the cars I would buy. Cars as in like two cars. The other thing that came into my mind was the ways I would want to use that money to support others like the animal rescues I’m involved in and feeding the homeless, the two things that I’m super passionate about. I’ve thought about this a lot and interestingly enough, through the whole shelter in place and COVID-19 thing that we’ve all been through, I realized that on a material level, there’s not much more that I already have in my life that I want. There are a few things, but I am in this space of you know how much I’ve wanted to buy a house for a long time. There’s also very specific car that I would put money on, but after that, I would want to support like Little Love Rescue, Pets of the Homeless and our friend, Nicole, who’s doing The Martha Project feeding the homeless people around LA. The first thing is I want to buy a house and buy a car that I’ve wanted, but I think about all the time, if I had the financial means how many animals and people I would want to support with that money.

A lot of us immediately go to the things that we’ve never had that we want to buy. Money is so wrapped up into freedom and this desire to be able to do whatever we want to do, not have any limitations and get everything that we’ve ever wanted. There’s that ongoing topic of discussion we have in many episodes about how even when you get everything you want, you may not feel any better about your life. You might not feel happier. In fact, you may feel empty. This is one of the most reoccurring points that we seem to make in our episodes. It comes up over and over again.

There are so many examples that we haven’t quite experienced to this extent, but when you think of wealthy people or successful people getting everything they wanted and yet they’re still not happy. I feel like I’ve experienced that off and on. I go back to this experience I had several years ago. I went to a bodywork session for cranial sacral. I don’t know if he’s still practicing, but he was a powerful bodyworker and healer in a lot of ways. Some people in my life had raved about him. I started to see him. He did permanently adjust some pain I had in my shoulder for years and years.

I have not had that pain since going to see him. I felt very compelled and I have a video I recorded long ago on the Eco-Vegan Gal YouTube channel interviewing him and talking about his work. I recorded one of my friends getting a session with him or maybe it was me. I don’t remember. It was probably embarrassing because it’s in the early days of my YouTube career. It wasn’t the physical work that he did on me that had a lasting impression, but it was something that he pointed out about me because his work, similar to a lot of body work is also the psychological and emotional side effects.

He asked me what was going on in my life as he usually did. It was his way of tuning into my body and seeing how he could support me. In this session, I told him that I was feeling some concern with money. He asked me, “Have you ever been in a period or in a place before where you weren’t able to pay your bills, where you weren’t able to make things work?” I reflected and thought, “I haven’t.” His point was that a lot of our concerns about money are based in the future. This isn’t going to be true with everybody, but I have been blessed where I always figure it out, whether the money shows up and it’s like the universe supporting me or I get an extension on a bill payment or some forgiveness.

We’re experiencing this so much with COVID-19 and people are being more lenient with paying bills on time or not putting up late fees or whatever. I think about that often because I have realized that it’s not about the money. Jason, I say this once before, I feel like maybe I shared this little point that I’m making right now of that it has not been about the financial amount. It’s not about how much it’s been in my bank account. I felt ongoing stress about money no matter how much money I’ve had.

Yes.

Are you saying yes that I have said this or yes, as in you agree?

It’s both.

What was the context in which I brought this up before do you remember?

I don’t, but you and I have discussed how in different ways there is this layered discussion about enoughness and the amount of money in your bank account that it would take to “feel safe or feel secure or feel good.” I know we’ve discussed this off the podcast in different ways before.

I had brought it up before. I found that it was helpful and it’s funny how one little sentence that somebody says to you can have a ripple effect over many years in your life. I’m so grateful for that point because it helps me ground myself when I’m feeling stressed about money and it gives me the perspective that what I don’t need is more money. More money does give me a sense of freedom and security. It makes it easier to pay bills and easier to buy things that I want. This is going to sound obvious but also important to remind ourselves the number of times that I’ve looked forward to buying something and it’s the anticipation of getting it.

It’s your career. It’s the anticipation of getting to a certain point in your career or the anticipation of a relationship. I can’t wait until I meet my person. You’re with the person and sometimes you start to take them for granted and you forget what it was like to anticipate that relationship. You forget what it’s like to anticipate success in your career. You reach a certain milestone and you’re suddenly looking for the next milestone. This is part of the reason that it’s so hard to feel enough because we focus so much on something. We get it and then we immediately focus on something else.

We base a lot of our own self-worth on external validation that we are ultimately not pleasing ourselves. Click To Tweet

This is why it’s so important to be present and grateful but also not to get attached to things. This is so true of money. I know you know this. It’s so interesting though is your common response to what you would do with money is to get cars. I have a feeling that you would get a car and then you would immediately want the next car. Maybe that would be fun for you. Maybe that would be joyful for you or maybe it would lead you to feel a little depressed, “Getting that car is nowhere near as exciting as the idea of getting that car is.”

I definitely have pointed out this before. I will say that getting my Tesla that I had wanted for so long remains almost two years later to be a very exciting thing. I never take that car for granted. Maybe you would get a McLaren one day and every day you would be grateful for it because I feel that way. There are certain things in our life that we do have continuous gratitude for. I’m not saying it’s an overarching thing. It depends on you and the place that you are. My point is that it’s interesting how we often go to that place of thinking that our lives are going to change significantly. If I look back on my life, I have not changed that much as a person based on the dollar amount of my bank account, based on how regularly income is coming in.

I feel different amounts of tension when I don’t have as much money. I do feel a little bit higher stress, but I also cannot say that stress is completely gone when I’ve felt financially stable or even like the small things of getting something in the mail. I’ve noticed this a lot. I’m not someone that orders too much online, but the last couple of times I have received a package, even something that was gifted to me, somebody has sent me products and I look forward to it so much. I get the product and then an hour later, that feeling is gone. That’s often what happens with material purchases is this anticipation is usually so much more exciting than the actual thing. That can feel depressing a lot of the times. That knowledge and that experience grounds me in not getting attached to wanting more money.

It’s interesting that you explored this and you extrapolated it to a new relationship or a new love or a new person in our lives or career success. By and large, if I look at myself and I look at the behaviors of a lot of people in society and also what corporations, media, marketing and advertising people do is they sell us on the addiction of more, better, new, different. We’re constantly looking for more, better, new and different things, cars, people, relationships, haircuts, clothes. You might say that the brand of capitalism, the style of capitalism that we have been existing on for so long in our society, that’s the engine it runs on. It is selling people that they need new, better, more and indifferent.

If they don’t have that, then there’s clearly something wrong with us. You see it in different ways of people being shamed for the way that they dress or the car that they drive or the zip code they live in or whatever material tyranny is imposed upon people. It’s a very real thing. It’s something I’m still unraveling of this idea of if I have these things, they’re going to demonstrate to me based on whatever materialistic value system I have and to other people that I’ve “made it” or whatever that means. You bought a house in this city or you bought this car. It must mean I’m an “important person.” I battle with that.

On some level, whether I live in a studio apartment or a house in the Hollywood Hills, does that change my worth and intrinsic value as a person? It doesn’t, but there’s still this notion that, “I must have done something successful or I’m of higher value to people because I bought this house, this car, have this successful company, have a certain number in my bank account.” It is such deep conditioning that I’m certainly still working through every single day, especially in the midst of this COVID-19 crisis. The idea of success, productivity, money, and what does it all mean?

It’s also examining our desires for it and how it continues to shift. It reminds me of the beginning of the interview with Elon Musk that Joe Rogan did. I’ve only listened to maybe twenty minutes of it. The part that stuck out to me is when Joe asked Elon about on Twitter he was talking about getting rid of all of his material possessions. Did you listen to it?

I did. I listened to the whole thing. His position that there’s a lot of twofold. There’s a lot of shaming of billionaires right now. It’s like, “How did he say it’s an attack vector?” That’s how he phrased it.

Joe Rogan called it an attack vector. Elon said, “It’s become pejorative,” like it’s a bad thing being a billionaire.

He went into this interesting perspective. He brought up a Warren Buffett and certain people in the law fields and financial fields that we don’t need as many lawyers, financial analysts and people in those positions. He feels that their talent, their wisdom and their genius could be better served making things. He was trying to create this idea that people who are adding value to the world or making things that are improving the human condition. There’s nothing wrong with making money at those things. Whereas some people in other positions may not be as relevant or valuable even though they’re making a lot of money. To put people under the umbrella of you’re rich or you’re a billionaire, therefore you are bad is a misnomer. I would have to agree. Lumping people in this category of wealth and having a certain amount of money must mean they’re a bad person, is a horrible inconclusive statement.

It’s also very confusing because there’s so much societal pressure to become wealthy at least in the United States. Most of us, at least in our age range, have grown up aspiring to be a millionaire. That’s a huge part of our American culture. There was even that show, Who Wants to be A Millionaire? which came back on the air. They refreshed it. It’s fascinating. We also have this idea that if you follow certain rules, anybody can become a millionaire. It’s this American dream that you can bootstrap your way to riches and give enough time, hard work and smart financial decisions. It’s within reach. There’s like this weird pressure to become incredibly financially successful and simultaneously a lot of shame built into it once you do become successful. It’s like damned if you do, damned if you don’t. Not to mention as you were saying, people will judge you based on, “Are you successful or are you not?”

There’s this shame and not making it happen like, “If I haven’t made enough money, then people aren’t going to take me as seriously. I need to show that I have enough money to afford a house or a car or whatever other lifestyle or materialistic things.” This is a big thing with people in our age range too, especially because we have friends that do this. I’ve probably positioned myself this way in the past as part of a marketing strategy is like, “Look at me. I’ve made it this far. Follow my strategies and you’ll be able to replicate my success.” That’s a huge thing or at least has been in the past 5 to 10 years. It’s like people showing off how great their lives are and, “Follow my formula and you can get there too.”

There’s a lot to unpack with us. The first thing that comes up for me, we’ve spoken about this dualistic, almost schizophrenic nature of, I call it crabs in a barrel, where there’s an encouragement. There is a fetishization of becoming rich and famous in our modern society, not American society. I’d say most societies. It’s celebrated and encouraged to be as famous, influential and rich as possible but not too famous and not too influential or we’re going to try and pull you back down into the barrel.

We’re going to cancel you. We’ve talked about the cancel culture.

MGU 63 | Conversation About Money

Conversation About Money: Money is so wrapped up into freedom; this desire to be able to do whatever we want to do and not have any limitations to get everything that we’ve ever wanted.

 

If you get too famous and you get too rich, then we are going to turn the screws on you. We are going to turn the dial of scrutiny up so high because you made it out of the barrel. We’re going to do everything we can to pull you back down into the barrel with all of us. It’s a weird thing of you get too famous, you get too influential, you get too rich and then a lot of people, not everyone. You’ve mentioned the cancel culture is societally acceptable to put people under a microscope once they become rich and famous enough that they’re not allowed to “screw up.” They’re not allowed to make mistakes. They’re not allowed to have a human moment of an error decision.

As Elon said, to go back to that, “Put them in the Twitter war.” We put them in the crossfire and do everything we can to bring them to the guillotine. On the one hand it’s like, “Be rich and famous and make a lot of money.” When you get there, you are going to be under so much scrutiny that if you fuck up, we’re going to put you to the screws. We’re going to bring the guillotine out. It’s insane. It’s totally insane how we encourage it and then shame people forward at the same time. It’s nuts.

That’s true of a lot of things as we have a lot of conflicting things in our culture. We talk about this when it comes to well-being. There’s so much conflicting advice out there. Health and wellness start to feel so overwhelming because people don’t know what to do. They don’t know how to make themselves feel better or look better. Even appearance, there are a lot of conflicting perspectives out there. It’s like, “We want you to get thin, but don’t get too thin.” That’s happening with Adele right now. I don’t know if you’ve been paying much attention to her weight loss, but she’s posted a few pictures and a few others over the course of the past few months to a year and it’s a noticeable weight loss. Some people are like, “She looks amazing and I want to look that way too.”

There are people that are shaming her, “You’ve become too thin.” She was also shamed before for being on the fuller side with her body. How confusing is that for her? People don’t accept her no matter what she looks like. She can never be good enough. That’s why the not good enoughness is so rampant is that no matter what you do, you’re never going to please everybody but we’re constantly encouraged to please everybody. It becomes incredibly confusing because we base a lot of our own self-worth on external validation so ultimately, we’re not even pleasing ourselves.

I say funny not as in laughable as in strange when I use the word funny. It’s strange that people love Adele because of her voice, her musicianship, her incredible emotional content she puts in the songs that she writes and performs. Yet, here we are scrutinizing her body. Adele has an amazing voice and an incredible artist, no matter what shape she is. To me, it’s bizarre that someone who isn’t even presenting her art through her body. Her vocal cords, diaphragm and all those things produce the sound that comes out of her body. I find it strange that it’s like, “Why do we care?”

The thing that we love about Adele is her emotion, her depth, her voice and her music and not how she looks. To me, it’s absolutely bizarre. It goes back to whose business are we in? Are we in our business, somebody else’s business or God’s business? What business are we focused on? We need to live and let live and let people do what they’re going to do instead of, “I don’t know.” Again, putting them under the microscope, like Adele’s rich and famous. If Adele was some nightclub singer in Poughkeepsie or Milwaukee or Detroit, would people give a shit?

No, but she’s Adele and she sold tens of millions of records. She’s toured the world. She’s one of the most famous musicians of our era. We put her under a higher level of scrutiny. It’s no wonder so many celebrities are talking more about their mental health struggles because it’s like, “Can you imagine the pressure and the mania of facing this every single day?” People think being rich and famous must be a cake walker. It must be so great. Can you imagine the level of scrutiny that people go through on that level? It gives me chills thinking about it.

It’s a good talking point in terms of fame in general is that at least in America we have a huge obsession with getting famous. I think of social media fame as Jason and I work in this world of content creation and the influencer world and all of that. There’s all of this focus on your numbers, whether it’s your financial numbers, your followers, your appearance, all of this. Constantly measuring ourselves and comparing ourselves to one another, there’s this resentment sometimes that I know I can’t help but feel. I always try to examine when it comes up for me is seeing other people that are successful, but I have to step back and think there’s so much pressure when you’re successful.

There’s this big content creator. Jason, I don’t know if you remember, but we saw him speak at an event that we went to. His name’s David Dobrik. He’s this huge YouTube star that came from Vine. He’s blown up. He’s very young. I don’t remember exactly how old he is, but I would say early to mid-twenties perhaps. He’s had so much success for years. He can buy this incredible house. He’s donating money. He makes videos about giving people cars and giving all this stuff, which is cool. A lot of people admire him but to me that seems like so much pressure because along with all of that fame comes so many decisions you have to make. I feel overloaded with decision-making as it is in my life. I cannot imagine being in my early twenties again, having to deal with so much fame and popularity, but then making all of these decisions about my career moves all the time and what to do with my money.

Are people liking me because I’m famous to people like me because I have money and they want me to give them a car on and on? I think about especially the younger generations and how to deal with that you finally get something that’s this huge coveted position of fame on social media. Yet along with that comes so many burdens and how I’m so grateful that I didn’t have that. I don’t have that because it’s also that fear that we talked about in our episode with Ruby Roth of peaking at a certain age and Ruby talked about how she had this fear that she peaked in her twenties. A lot of people have spoken about this. It’s like, “I’m getting more external validation, money and all of these other measures of success than I may ever experience again in my life. What is left after this?”

I’ve had the exact same thoughts of have I peaked, is this it? I’ve reflected on my career track as a chef when I had the TV show on the air. I was getting flown to Pebble Beach Food & Wine and all over the country doing these appearances and signed a book deal. It’s so funny because whatever tastes we’ve had, and I’m speaking for myself, whatever tastes of the bright lights or fame or whatever that is. I’ve talked about this interaction, but I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned it on the show. Years ago, this was maybe 2011, I was hanging out at a clothing store and I met Joe Manganiello, the actor. He first I guess got famous because he was on True Blood. He was a werewolf on True Blood and he’s married now to Sofia Vergara. I was sitting next to him. I didn’t know who he was. I didn’t watch True Blood. I’m at a clothing store doing a fitting. I’m like, “What’s up?” He’s like, “I’m Joe.” “I’m Jason.” He’s from Pittsburgh. I’m from Detroit. We talked about being athletes and how he wanted to be a professional football player.

He never made it to the NFL because he was injured. I talked about being a basketball player when I was in high school. We got to talk about cars. He’s like, “You’re from Detroit. You’re into cars, cool.” I said, “Yeah. What are you driving around?” He said, “I got a Ford Explorer.” I said, “That’s cool.” My family works for Ford.” He keeps telling me that Ford gave him the Explorer. I had no idea who he was. I’m like, “What do you mean gave you?” He’s like, “I came into some success. I’ve been doing some stuff on HBO.” He was humble and cool. He’s like, “When I moved out to LA from Pittsburgh years ago and I was struggling, nobody want to give me an Explorer back then. Nobody want to count my meals or give me free clothes or any of that stuff.”

You get a series, you taste a little bit of fame and people start throwing things at you. He’s like, “I don’t need that now. I can buy my own car. I can buy my own clothes. I can go out and drop $100, $200 on a dinner. When I needed it, no one gave a shit. Now that I have a little bit of fame, everyone wants to give me the world.” It’s so weird how our world works like that. We see it, especially living in LA and me having lived in New York and you in other cities, people smell success. They smell fame. They smell importance and they want to lavish you with stuff that you don’t even need anymore. When you needed it, it wasn’t there. It’s fascinating how our society operates that way.

I feel like there’s so much imbalance. I saw in TikTok when I was browsing through the app and this girl was saying, “It’s so strange to me how celebrities encourage us to donate to other people that are less fortunate.” Her point was a little bit of a joke like, “Why are they encouraging us? We don’t have as much money as them.” It’s interesting for two different reasons. One, it is a good point. It’s hard to hear somebody give advice. Another example is I saw this little highlight reel or promo that the stars of Shark Tank did. I love that show. I watch it every week. They did one for COVID. It was each of the sharks giving advice to small business owners, but several of them were recording this in their lavish homes. They’re sitting down on their couch. The background looks perfect and they have their nice clothes and all this stuff.

We have no idea what's next for us for better or for worse. Click To Tweet

I felt like there was a disconnect because we know that all those sharks are successful. That’s why they’re on the show. They’re investing in businesses. That’s wonderful. To be sitting there with all your money and financial security, giving advice to people that might be going through one of the worst times of their lives financially felt a little strange. The advice was obvious and said very frequently, but it was like, “I don’t know if I want to be hearing that from somebody when what I think this TikTok was saying is something that’s on a lot of our minds.” There’s so much financial inequality and imbalance. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could spread that money around instead of trying to advise people?

That’s part of the challenge when you see somebody who’s successful giving their advice, it’s like, “It’s not that easy though.” And as we said earlier, there’s the shame that comes with it. Jason, you and I have felt this so much and we can talk about this more openly. It’s like, “I have spent so many years studying money and I know for sure going back to, I think it was like, 2008-ish when I read T. Harv Eker’s book, Secrets of the Millionaire Mind. I read the book. I followed his advice. I went to his events. I didn’t do everything perfectly, so maybe I just messed up and didn’t do it right.

Jason and I have talked a lot about being huge advocates of Brendon Burchard, who’s a similar personality. If you don’t know him, he’s an equivalent to someone like Tony Robbins, a motivational speaker. Brendon talks mostly about business and now he does a lot in wellness. We love Brendon. I’ve been to so many Brendon’s events. I’ve read most of his books. I followed his advice. I don’t have that much to speak of. Jason and I went through a year-long business program for our brand Wellevatr.

We invested our money in it. We followed their advice and sure we didn’t do everything perfectly, but we didn’t have that much to speak of. I’d love to explore that shame that comes with something where you buy something, you invest your time in something and someone’s like promising you all these results and talking about how successful they’ve been. If you follow those steps and you don’t get the results that they have, I personally feel a lot of shame around that of like, “I’m not good enough. I didn’t do things right. What am I doing wrong?”

It’s like this awful feeling of failure when you’ve tried so hard to do something and yet you’re not getting the results that sometimes you were promised or you were convinced that were going to happen. It’s tough. That came up in an article that you had sent me Jason. I forgot the title of the article. I read that wonderful article, it was in The Guardian. Part of the messaging behind it was the shame that we feel when we don’t feel like we’re measuring up or getting the results that other people are.

This is one of those articles. There have been a few articles that you and I have passed back and forth over the course of this pandemic that have been really resonant, really deep. This one in particular cut to the bone for me and I know you as well because you texted me your reaction. There were certain passages in this article that hit me in a way because I’ve been struggling with the idea that I have really fucked up. I didn’t save enough money. I’ve drained all my investments. I wasn’t successful enough last year. I’m running out of money right now. More will come. It always does. There’s that trust. But there’s this feeling of I’m running out of money and running out fast.

When I saw this article that our dear friend, Adam Yasmin who also has been a wonderful guest, this Guardian article that came out yesterday that says, Grand Delusion: How the Pandemic Exposed We’re All Just Pretending. I want to read a few chunks of it. I’m not going to read the whole thing. Perhaps this crisis will make space for all of us to acknowledge that our losses and our failures aren’t our individual faults. I want to pluck a few things out that really hit me. The author is Lynn Steger Strong.

In one of the passages she says, “I was meant to write about perception versus reality in what I do professionally.” The owner of the New York restaurant, Prune, Gabrielle Hamilton, wrote an essay about this, which is in a phenomenal article in the New York Times, describing for so long how many of us have been pretending that we were or we’re about to “make it.” We had checked all or most of the boxes we were told to check in our professions even as our lives remained in constant states of anxiety and fear. Work, the ability to not only get it and do it, but to not ever stop it is the attribute that is perhaps flaunted and celebrated most of all.

One of the many reasons most of us don’t share the ways that we don’t have enough money is I would argue because we’re ashamed to admit that we’re struggling. We’ve internalized that our suffering is our fault and our fault alone. That’s because we must not be working hard enough. I wanted to write about the pervasiveness of this feeling. There are no longer avenues to stability because I wanted to be less shame around it. I wanted to explore the ways that entrenched and fundamental ways, our personal struggles are way more systemic than us. It goes on to talk about that there are a lot of people who thought of this idea of success that performing over and over again. Hearing other people in the food industry, she goes on like successful people, top of their game celebrity chefs have been admitting that they were one bad week or month away from going completely under and how much that shocked her.

She discovered in fact that a lot of this posturing and a lot of this fake it until you make it or acting like we’re successful has been a ruse for so many people for a while. It’s not the shame that keeps us quiet either. We keep our failures close to us because we know, especially in markets like art, books, restaurants and social media, it’s so much about our appearance. Is that book, chef, or artist important? Why would anyone pay for their rent or their studio or their speaking tour? Our pretending that we’re not drowning is proof that what we might be worth saving.

Our performing stability and acting like we’re stable is one of the few ways that we hope we might navigate the narrow avenues that still might get us out. It’s the last part I’m going to read from this article, a thing though about perpetuating misconceptions with people about pretending because you’re busy surviving. You can’t stop playing the rigged game on the off chance somehow that you might outsmart it because you can’t help but feel like your circumstances must somehow be your fault is that it makes it so much harder for any individual within the group to tell the truth.

That’s the part that lucked dug into my heart is that how many of us in food, social media, the entertainment, authors and all the people you and I hold in high regard, our colleagues, our friends have been bullshitting for so long. Not only that, how long have I been bullshitting? How long have I been on social media and my TV series and I’m this successful chef, I’m this celebrity chef, I’m this bestselling author. In reality, I’ve been living month to month for so fucking long, I can’t even remember the last time that I didn’t live month to month. The illusion on social media, TV, book tour and speaking to her and all this shit we do has been like, “Look at me, I’m successful. Look at what I’ve done.” The reality is, and you know this as my best friend and the people close to me know, it has been a fucking struggle for a long, long time.

It’s so important to talk about that because the more that we open up about our struggles, it gives permission for other people to open up about theirs and not feel like they’re alone in it. It’s especially important with money because there’s so much going on around in our heads and with other people. We see it in so many different extremes. We see billionaires and millionaires and we see people in poverty. We see our friends having success and buying homes. Some people losing their jobs. Some people going homeless, some people going into massive debt or filing for bankruptcy.

There are so many different extremes. That’s why it’s so scary and can feel so alone, that fear of admitting when you’re having a hard time. It also reminds me of all the different judgments we have around people and the misconceptions or confusion. For example, seeing people out in the street asking for money, holding up signs, and we have these judgements, “That person must want money for drugs or for me, I don’t know if that person wants money for drugs. I don’t know if I feel comfortable giving them money because I don’t know where the money’s going. What if they need it? Am I being selfish not giving it to them?” and that massive conflict we have.

MGU 63 | Conversation About Money

Conversation About Money: It’s hard to feel enough because we focus so much on something that once we get it, we immediately focus on something else.

 

In TikTok again, I saw this girl talking about how when you donate money at grocery stores, they might be using it for a tax write-off and your money’s not going where you think it is. That conflict I feel when I’m at whatever store and they asked me to donate money for a cause. I stopped to wonder like, “Where is my money going?” That fear that comes up around any donations or the pressure that we feel when we walk out of a grocery store and there’s somebody there for Salvation Army or something asking for money.

Many of us want to give more and so many of us want to talk about these things, but it’s hard to even know what’s safe. Money is so tied to safety, to security. It’s like, “Do I trust this person enough to give them money? Do I trust this person to talk about money? Do I trust this person to ask for money?” All of those challenges that we started to put up so many walls because of that lack of trust that we have with one another.

The thing that I want to talk about and touch on here that this article also brought up in The Guardian because I want to go back to it. At the very end of it, the author says, “Individual shame and a rampant individual desire to succeed in ruthless systems have kept many of us so quiet about this country’s failures.” Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, they’re so blatantly apparent. One of the things I hope this crisis makes space for is for more of us to acknowledge and say out loud that our losses and our failures are not solely our individual faults.

I hope we might begin to say out loud all the ways that our system has failed us to admit as a group that we are being slaughtered and exploited, that our bodies are overworked and undervalued, and that it takes the onus off of any one of us. It can and should make us feel less shame and less fear. What that brings up for me is I’ve talked in certain posts about toxic capitalism. In our country, in America, we’ve heard about the 1% and what that means. What that means, that gap means that they average 39 times more income than the bottom 90%.

If you have where a very small group of people and incredibly small group of people averaging 39 times the amount of income, we have to acknowledge that is a toxic form of capitalism. That level of inequality leads to an incredibly imbalanced system where you have people and we’re experiencing this right now. If they don’t have income, they don’t even have the ability to make it to the next month. How is it that we have a system as this author so brilliantly referenced in this article in The Guardian that encourages us to overwork ourselves and undervalue ourselves to scrape by month to month to month? We’re told that we didn’t work hard enough. You didn’t hustle hard enough. Maybe you didn’t read the right book or take the right class or work hard.

You should’ve worked harder because your grandparents and your parents worked harder than you did. You lazy Millennial. You lazy Gen X-er. There’s so much toxic rhetoric around “hard work.” What do you do when you have been busting your ass to the bone to try and make ends meet? You have a whole society saying, “You should’ve pulled yourself up by your bootstraps more. You should have worked harder.” It’s like, “Can I work any harder? Are you fucking kidding me?”

There’s the opposite perspective of the spiritual community, which is like, “You need to trust and you need to visualize it and manifest it.” I love doing those things. Those things feel good sometimes, but they don’t always work. There are so many times where I’m like, “Maybe I’m not trying hard enough. Maybe I’m not meditating enough. Maybe I’m not believing enough. Maybe I’m not visualizing enough or manifesting the right way or on and on. The amount of shame I felt over the years of not doing things right on a spiritual level and all of these promises that were told from spiritual gurus out there.

They’re very well meaning. I certainly want to believe in them, but it’s hard to put your trust in the Universe when you’re trying to pay your bills and you have no idea where that money’s going to come from. You read these books and they’re like, “We know times are tough but keep believing.” Sometimes that has worked for me. Sometimes the money does come. I celebrate it every time it does. It’s not meant to be cynical, but one thing that’s been pointed out to me by other people is like, “What about all the people in poverty?”

Don’t you think they’d be a little offended if you went up to them and like, “Maybe you’re not visualizing. Maybe you need to manifest it.” There are people in this world that are starving. To tell them that they need to follow your steps or to manifest that money or whatever, I don’t know if that is a blanket statement that we could apply to everybody’s lives. I can tell you firsthand that I’ve tried so many different tactics when it comes to finances. I have not found one that works every single time regardless of my circumstances. Sometimes my finances are in a bad place and it doesn’t feel like I can do anything. The last thing I want when I’m feeling financial tension is to also feel shame and to feel like it was my fault and I didn’t do enough.

That is such a horrible feeling to sit there and think, “I guess it’s all my fault because I didn’t do enough.” I can’t tell you how often I struggle with that emotion. I would probably say I feel that every single day when I wake up, sit there and feel incredibly worthless because I didn’t feel like I did enough that day. It’s my fault that I’m in my financial position. It’s tough because I’m a big proponent for taking personal responsibility. That’s part of it is we do have this culture. “You’re on your own. You’ve got to figure this out on your own. You’ve got to take responsibility.”

What’s key about this article is that sometimes it might not be our faults. Sometimes it’s not fully within our control. Sometimes we can work incredibly hard and not get results. You’ve certainly expressed this to me over the years. I’ve experienced this too. I’ve worked my ass off on things that I thought were going to be incredibly financially lucrative and they weren’t. I remember for you, with one of your programs, you fell into some deep despair over that.

It’s not the amount of time and money investment. As entrepreneurs, you and I having worked for ourselves for so long at this point. There is this idea that if I check all the boxes, if I do my due diligence, if I get the right team around me, survey our audience and find out what they want, invest in the right infrastructure, do the launch program, write the emails and hire a copywriter or hire this person. You and I have done so many iterations of “doing the right things” when launching new programs and new products.

I suppose I was convinced because I consulted and hired the right people. I did all the right things that I thought when I didn’t necessarily turn a profit on those things. It can be devastating to recover from those things for me because you invest, depending on the project, months or even years into something and then you launch it. It doesn’t go like you thought it would go. You’ve spent all this time and money in preparation launching this thing. It doesn’t give you the ROI or the profit you thought it would.

You’re like, “What do I do now?” Do I need to get a thicker skin? Do I need to be able to rebound quicker from these things? I don’t know. I’ve certainly been in a dark space around spending so much time, effort and money around launching certain things and then not getting the return energetically or financially that I thought. I’m in a space right now where I’m not sure what to do to be honest with you. Whereas, to reflect back on this that we’ve been reading from this Guardian article.

A lot of our fears are rooted in our fears of surviving. Click To Tweet

Certainly, what even cut deeper to me was this New York Times article from this restauranteur, this chef Gabrielle Hamilton, how she talked about being in the restaurant business for twenty years. All of a sudden, there’s no income. There’s no restaurant. There no business. Everything that she has known for the last two decades of her life is she might not be able to come back from this. It may not be that she can rebound from this. For me, having been focusing as a chef for the last several years, there’s no business, there’s no income right now. There’s none coming in.

I’m sure a lot of people feel this way in their careers. “What do I do now?” The answer is I don’t know. The answer of, I don’t know, is scary as shit because bills are due. Credit cards are due. Utilities are due. Rent is due. We live in one of the most expensive places in the country. To say I’m not terrified would be lying. It’s not to compare again that there are people in way “worse situations,” more dire situations. Going around and feeding the homeless as I’ve done several times over the course of this pandemic. You see people and meet people who are living in tents downtown and living in tents on Echo Park Lake and living under underpasses.

The whole comparison thing is a slippery slope and it doesn’t necessarily do us much good to be like, “They’ve got it worse.” We’re all in different degrees of panic, anxiety, fear and confusion right now and comparing situations, I don’t know it’s that useful, to be honest. How are we going to pay bills next month or the month after that? I have no idea. Whether it’s wondering where our next meal is going to come from or our next hot shower or how we’re going to keep a roof over our heads or pay the rent.

Most everyone I know and the conversations you and I have in a lot of our close friends and colleagues and peers are vacillating between like, “All good. We’re going to make it through,” and being an absolute fucking terror about all of this. I’m not even going to say like I don’t know anyone who I haven’t received a phone call from in our close circle with, who hasn’t been like, “I was up all night with nightmares. I am terrified about how my business is going to continue. I don’t know how I’m going to pay the mortgage or pay the rent.”

I feel like if people are fronting about like, “All good. Keep trusting.” It’s falling back into this trap of this article we referenced where it’s like, “Do you feel like you’re in full trust and full faith? Are you faking it right now? How do you feel? How do you feel about this?” I feel being honest about it, whatever level we’re at, invites more people to be radically honest, that they might be terrified and scared as hell about losing their business and losing what they’ve done for the last 10, 15, 20 years and not knowing where to go from here. I’m certainly in that space right now. I’m fucking terrified. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t know where we’re going to go from here.

Especially in our community of the wellness world, it is not only being content creators, which in itself comes with a lot of pressure to front. We’ve been trained to do this. It shifts off and on but for the most part content creators, there’s like an energetic pressure to always do things perfectly, to follow the patterns, the styles and to do what’s working for the algorithm. It’s a lot of fake it until you make it. Sometimes cheating the system and pretending that things are going better than they’re not. It’s so easy to fall into this trap of presenting yourself in a way that’s not fully true because you feel like if you don’t present yourself that way, then you’re never going to get what you want.

It’s so appealing. For me and a lot of our close friends and the people in the wellness community, it’s like, “It’s hard to admit when you’re scared. It’s hard to admit that you don’t trust because there is so much of this pressure to believe and surrender.” Whether you’re religious or whether you believe in the universe, a higher power, a spirit, it’s like, “Don’t worry about it. Somebody has your back, God has your back, the universe has your back, whoever.” You’ve got to trust in it. You’ve got to surrender to it.

As part of my core that believes in that sometimes simply because I don’t have a choice. If I’m not going to end my life, which I don’t have any intention on doing, I don’t have much of a choice but to keep going every day. I should say I am choosing to keep going every day no matter what, but sometimes to keep going, that is going in fear. There’s a shame that comes a lot from religion too, but also the spiritual community. There’s so much crossover between the two. Essentially, they are similar if not the same is like, “If you don’t trust in God, you don’t believe in God or you’re not doing things right and you need to keep trusting and trusting. You need to pray more. You need to meditate more. You do all of these things and trust.” It’s important to admit sometimes like, “I have fear and I don’t have any trust right now. I am so terrified of the uncertainty. I am thinking about ending my life sometimes because this is so painful.” Wasn’t there something else I had sent you about the rise of suicides?

Yeah. There have been a few articles about how all of this is contributing to a massive spike in mental illness and people being suicidal. It makes sense because in some ways, depending on what statistics you believe, the unemployment rate being the highest it’s been, it may have even overtaken it. I’m not quite sure now of the unemployment rates in the US being on par or maybe even exceeding the great depression of 100 years ago. The economic devastation of people wondering how they’re going to provide for their families, feed their families, pay the rent, pay the mortgage and keep the lights on.

Combine that with an example of someone who’s had a thriving career for decades and suddenly, they’re out of work. Suddenly, they’re unemployed. The pain of identifying with being a successful person or having that part of your identity. If I have this job, I have this career, I have this thing and that’s what I’ve known for decades of my life and suddenly it’s not there anymore. As someone who has struggled a lot with mental health, which is one of the reasons we created this show, not my specific struggle, but extrapolating that into wanting to provide more conversations, resources, articles, supplements, science and human point of view around mental and emotional health. I’m struggling like hell right now.

I’m struggling because it’s lack of financial resources or it’s this idea that my level of productivity or my level of how much content I create or how prolific that content is tied to my self-image. If I’m not this successful chef, author, TV host or whatever, where’s my value in the world? If I’m not constantly creating, constantly pumping out content, uplifting others? Maybe I don’t have the bandwidth to uplift others right now. I’ve been feeling that way is I feel lost. I feel like for the first time in probably two decades, I don’t have a plan. I don’t know what to do next.

I’ve been applying for different jobs and different gigs. I’ve been putting out proposals to different partners and different people that I could collab with. Over the last few months, nothing work-wise has come through. I know a lot of people in that position who right now are vacillating between, as you so brilliantly detailed, trusting in God, universe, spirit and all that is like, “I’ve been through rough patches before. I’ve been in the unknown before, but for some reason the severity of this and how sweeping this economic devastation is, feels different certainly than other points of uncertainty I’ve experienced in my career. This feels different to me.”

I certainly like you vacillate between feeling like, “It’s going to be okay, everything’s going to be all right,” and moments of, “I don’t know how we’re going to survive this.” The reality is I’m not going to be homeless. The terror that comes up is like “You’re going to be homeless like your father was.” That specter, that illusion hangs over my head sometimes. I know if the shit hits the fan, what’s the worst-case scenario? I put all my stuff in storage, I pack the animals in the car and I drive back to Detroit.

Is that worst-case scenario? Yeah. What I feel a tremendous amount of shame around that probably would my ego feel torched. Absolutely, you failed. You had to pack up all your shit and move back home. You didn’t make it. You failed. You fucked up. You couldn’t make it. I’ve gone there. I’ve sunk into that so I know it’s like, will I run out of food? Probably not. Will I be homeless? Probably not. Will I not have people who would support me or take me in? Yeah and in that way I feel a sense of privilege and I don’t mean that in a negative way because I feel privilege gets tossed around in a very negative like, “That’s because you have privilege.” It’s a very negative thing in our society, but the reality is I do feel a level of privilege in that I’ll have a roof over my head. I’ll have food on the table and I’ll be taken care of.

MGU 63 | Conversation About Money

Conversation About Money: The style of capitalism that has been existing for so long in our society is the engine that runs on selling people the need to buy something new, better, more, and different.

 

There’s also the societal narrative of you’re a 42-year-old man. You’re going to move back in with your mom because you didn’t make it. You failed. Is that real? Did I fail? If worst-case scenario I had to up all my shit in a storage unit, leave LA, take the animals and go live with my family at 40, the societal narrative would be you failed and you’re fucked up. Is that real? That’s what I wrestle with. I don’t wrestle with I’m going to starve and be homeless because I have privilege. I wrestle with you fucked up and you failed because you didn’t “make it,” and you would have to move back in with your family because you’d be destitute. That’s my biggest fear.

It’s important to hear because we hear a lot of stories on the other side of this and it’s tempting to say, “Look at this person. They had to couch surf and that’s when they came up with their brilliant idea.” There are a lot of beautiful stories of people who came from nothing or had the highs and lows in their lives and came out of it. The truth is we have no idea what’s next for us, for better or for worse. For worse, we think I might lose my house and I might have to move in with my parents. For better, you could have something unexpected happening that brings you a lot more income. That’s where I try to go. First of all, I sit with my dark emotions and try not to judge them.

That’s incredibly important. That’s part of the reason we’re sharing this is we’re committed to being honest with you, the audience, because we want to have these raw, comfortable conversations and not always paint life as some formulaic thing because it’s not formulaic. There are way too many factors for us to promise that our lives can be replicated and that somebody else can have that. There’s a little cynical side of me that feels a little bit resentful of all the different people that I’ve “followed” and tried to replicate their success.

I feel a little resentful for them promising me things. I certainly did in one of the programs that Jason and I took. I remember finishing that program and thinking, “I feel disappointed because I trusted this person and I learned a lot from them, but they told me I was going to get results and I didn’t get them.” I had to battle with my feelings of, “Maybe I did it wrong and I don’t know what the truth is. I don’t know. Did I not do things right? If I had followed them exactly how they’ve encouraged me, would I have received those results? It’s also okay to be disappointed and it’s okay to feel a little bitter.

It’s normal if you’re jealous or resentful or any of these dark emotions of other people that you see succeed. The important thing is that we don’t want to pass on the shame. If you feel those emotions, those are common emotions to feel frustrated with somebody and want to lash out because you’re in so much pain and they seem like they’ve got everything figured out. As one of our big points in this episode is maybe their lives aren’t as great as you think they are and maybe their lives aren’t as wonderful as their highlight reels are.

If you’re feeling all of those emotions towards them, let them pass through you. Let any of these negative emotions pass through. One of the big keys here is that if all you did was survive, you did a great job. I would say this to Jason, hearing you express your worst-case scenario doesn’t sound so bad because you have a wonderful supportive mother and you do have a home to go to. It’s almost impossible for you to be homeless because of the support system that you have. I certainly have no judgment on you if you wanted to live with your mom.

That sounds wonderful. I did that in 2012. I went and lived with my parents for a few months. There were a couple of people that judged me for that. That was a wonderful time despite the tensions of living with your family members. It was wonderful and I could do that at any point. To your example, both of us have the blessing of having family members that would welcome us home if we needed to go there, if we needed to pack up our cars and drive to live with our families, reminding ourselves of those things. If you, the audience, have that privilege as well of somebody else who would take you in with open arms. That is a privilege. That is an important thing to remember.

A lot of our fears are rooted in our fears of surviving. If you can’t pay your bills, maybe you won’t be evicted right away. Maybe it’s okay not to pay your bills or maybe your power won’t be cut off. Even if all of those awful things happen, which they can, there are other things that you can do instead. If you’re still alive, that is the most important thing. It’s great too that you’ve shared this worst-case scenario because it doesn’t sound so bad to me on the outside. If you’re worried about what people think of you, I bet you more people could relate to it than you may even realize.

The people that love you the most, Jason and I say this to the audience as well, the people that truly love you don’t care about that stuff. They want you to be alive. It makes me emotional to even say that because there’s so much power around that. It’s so important to remind ourselves of that. Even saying that, it brings me up emotions too. You’ve struggled a lot with feelings of suicide. You’ve been tempted to end your life many times during our friendship and at the core, as your friend, all I want is for you to be alive. That’s all that matters to me.

That’s all that matters for most of us. It’s not quite that simple, but that’s what each of us want deep down is we want to be okay and we want to be alive. We want to survive. That’s our basic human emotion. We’ve created these lives where so many other things matter. Going back to Elon Musk, as the example, he’s a famous billionaire who’s had a lot of success. He’s got so much. He’s got a partner that I imagine loves him. He’s got children that I assume love him. He is recognized or will be all over the world. He’s done incredible things for this for many people. He’s also made mistakes. He’s pissed people off. He’s set off color things.

Whatever you think of Elon Musk though, it’s amazing that he’s at this point where it’s like, “I don’t need all these material possessions.” His focus right now is getting humanity to Mars. That’s what matters to him. We have built so much. We started off this episode talking about the desire to accumulate wealth in order to buy things and have freedom and all this stuff, but ultimately what matters is staying alive and then all of the basic needs and important things to us. Maybe that’s one of the beautiful things that we are uncovering right now is that if we can’t pay our bills, maybe it’s not so bad.

That brings up a lot for me what you said. A big part of this for me is again the fear that I won’t be housed or not the fear that I won’t have food in my belly or have a hot shower to bathe in and the basics. To be accurate about my suffering and my mental health crises, it’s not necessarily a survival suffering or a fear of not being able to survive as you detailed. It’s fear of feeling shame for myself. It’s fear of not being loved. It’s fear of self-judgment and the judgment of others of like “This fucking 42-year-old guy had to move back in with his mom because he was broke. He failed as an entrepreneur. He failed as a chef. He failed as an artist. I know my mental battle would be severe with that. I know it would because my ego and my self-identity would be so challenged of like, “You’re approaching your mid-40s and you had to move back in with your mom. You fucked up.”

The fear of how badly I would judge myself and the fear of not being lovable. Who would want to date me? Who would want to love some 42-year-old guy that failed so badly? He had to move all the way back across the country and live with his mother who would love me? That’s the deepest part of it. It’s not survival. It’s not whether I would have food on the table or you as a friend. I know the core people who know me would still be with me. The deepest fear is the shame and the unlovability that I would feel around myself and project that onto a romantic partner. As a man in American society, he failed in business. He failed with his art. He failed with his craft, his career and where would I even go from there mentally? I don’t know. That’s the deepest core of my fear is the shame that I would feel for myself in that situation.

This is why it’s so important to talk about these things. This is why having loved ones, friends that you can open up with is such a blessing. I feel so grateful for you. I feel grateful for this platform of the podcast to talk about this. I hope that it opens up the hearts and minds of other people who they want to talk about these things but feel that shame and who haven’t fully looked within themselves. From a spiritual level, if we look for the lessons within everything in the hard parts of our lives, maybe it isn’t about that trust we talked about like maybe trust isn’t the answer. Maybe it’s self-examination and learning lessons, whatever that means. Just because you learn a lesson, it doesn’t mean that you figured things out, it means that you learn something and applying it does not always mean that you get the outcome that you want. That’s something I continuously learn. We talk a lot about letting go of expectation and letting go of what we think other people expect of us.

Reflect on what you need versus what you want. Reflect on what you have and what you can give in big and small ways. Click To Tweet

That’s deeply rooted in our money issues, our money concerns, our money fears is that they’re so tied into our status. They’re so tied into external validation. We’ve been taught so many different things from other people, whether they’ve directly taught us or we’ve learned by their example or we’ve compared our lives to them. There are so many emotions tied into money. It brings up a lot. My hope is that the audience has a chance to step back and examine this too, whenever that might happen. Sometimes you have these a-ha moments. For me, mine is that the key is to survive. That’s what we wish for each and every one of you tuning in to the show is we want you to survive. That’s at the core of mental health.

It’s nice when you can thrive and we’ll certainly hope that you thrive and not just survive. That’s probably in some of our copywriting on our website or our show description or something. Thriving is wonderful, but we’re not always thriving but we are surviving as long as we’re here on the planet and that is ultimately the most important thing. We each need to acknowledge ourselves for that and then start to think about what we have access to. That’s one of the greatest gifts of financial challenges is you start to get creative and aware of your actual circumstances and actual needs. What do you need to spend money on right now? Do you need to buy all these things on Amazon or wherever else or do you simply need to buy food so that you can survive and get access to water?

Maybe there’s so much in your life. I’m fairly certain that there’s so much in each of our lives that we don’t need and we’re spending money on. If it comes down to paying the water bill, keeping the electricity on and paying for rent, or get into a point where you have enough money to put gas in your car so you can drive home to live with your parents. Maybe you call up your friends and ask if you can crash on their couch, whatever it is. The other beautiful thing about these times is we’re forced to be very humble. That’s another thing I’m learning from what you’ve said. You’ve been incredibly humble. You’ve been raw. You’ve been open and that’s beautiful.

Lastly, the other big thing is the reminder to be generous whenever you can. Whether it’s generous with money, generous with time, generous with love, generous with resources. Not everybody has the money to donate. Maybe you’re getting by day by day and you don’t feel comfortable giving a dollar away. That’s okay. Each of us have been in that position. Sometimes even a penny can help because a penny does have a compounding effect if enough people donate a penny. Give what you can but your resources, whether it’s time, love or making something, those are needed too. The moments when somebody is generous to me when I’m struggling, those are some of the most beautiful parts of life.

Hearing what you’ve said has reminded me of how many generous people are in my life and all the different ways that they’ve been generous to me and my parents, for example. It’s like the generosity. They gave your life and they raised you. Knowing that I could go home and be with them, that’s a generous thing or the friends if I needed to, I could call them up and stay with them. There’s a lot of generosity in this world. We needed to acknowledge ourselves for all those ways that we can be generous. We need to acknowledge the people around us for being generous. That brings us closer as a community. My encouragement is to reflect on all of these things. Reflect on what you need versus what you want. Reflect on what you have and what you can give in big and small ways.

I feel that perhaps one of the biggest lessons that I’m present to right now, and it’s a lesson over and over again, every day is presence. We’ve heard so many things about presence from so many spiritual teachers. Eckhart Tolle is probably one of the first that come to top of mind with his teachings and his books. If I look at my pain, I look at my fear and I look at my suffering, most of it is rooted in perceived regrets or shame about the past. I didn’t save enough money. I didn’t invest well enough. I didn’t plan for the future. I didn’t plan for a pandemic like this, which is why I’m running out of money or perceive that I’m running out of money or the pain that comes from future projection.

My greatest fear is tail between my legs, loading up the animals in my car and driving cross-country back to Detroit, have to live with my mom and file for bankruptcy or whatever it is. That’s a future projection. None of those things exist. The past is gone and whatever perceived regrets that I use to self-deprecate myself or use as fuel to wound myself or whatever projected future fears don’t even exist. The reality is if I’m going to practice presence, I am in a house in Los Angeles. I’m safe. I’m warm. I have food in my refrigerator. I’m surrounded by three cats on the table that love me. They’re butting up against me and giving me love right now.

I’m talking to my best friend examining this topic of fear, projection and presence with you and all as well. I’ve closed on my back. I have a hot shower to go to after this. In this moment all is well, that I know for sure. If I have any practice that pulls me out of future fear projection or past pain or past regrets, it is to take inventory of what is right in front of me in this moment. Whether or not the audience, whoever is tuning into this podcast has a meditation, mindfulness or presence practice. For me, that is one thing that I’ve been using over and over again to pull me out of pain, pull me out of suffering and pull me out of fear is what is happening right now. Can I be fully present to it?

Thank you for sharing that and thank you for sharing your heart so openly. Not a direction I was expecting to go in, but very few of our episodes go anywhere than we’ve planned.

Maybe this show is an analogy for life. We don’t know where it’s going.

We’re very grateful for you, the audience. We love hearing from you. We truly want you to be part of the conversation so we hope that you reach out to us whether publicly or privately. Publicly you can do that through social media. We are @Wellevatr. That’s also our website as we’ve mentioned, Wellevatr.com. When you go to the show notes on our website, there’s a comment section so you can join the conversation there. We love hearing from you. We hope that you’ll write in and share your reflections on this episode or any episode that you’ve read. We encourage you to subscribe and to share the episodes, leave a review if it appeals to you because that helps it reach other people.

We’d be honored if you shared this episode with somebody else that you think needs it and that could help open you up to a conversation with them or have a little discussion afterward. We would love to hear where that leads, whether it’s a romantic partner, a family member, a friend, somebody who’s struggling with money, we ultimately want you to know that you’re not alone and that we’re here for you. If you want to reach out to us privately through a social media direct message or through email, which is [email protected]. We would love to support you in whatever way we possibly can. We have a supportive community of people on Patreon, so if you joined there, you not only support us, but you get to connect with other people and have deeper discussions together about the episodes.

That’s there for you at Patreon.com/wellevatr. We always welcome your feedback about other resources and episodes we can create. We have tons of freebies. I don’t know if we have any directly about money on there, but we have free eBooks about learning how to feel good enough. We have an eBook about how to take charge of your life and feel more empowered. That does include some tips on business from other wellness entrepreneurs out there. We always try to take our balanced perspective and show you what other people are doing and try not to present a formula for you.

We also have our Wellness Warrior Training and The Consistency Code, which has been designed to guide you through all different elements of wellness and being consistent with it and holding yourself accountable. We are dedicated with this podcast and all the things I mentioned to helping your well-being because we do want to see you survive and hopefully thrive as well. We can’t wait to connect with you further. Is there anything you’d like to add, Jason?

MGU 63 | Conversation About Money

Conversation About Money: Most of us don’t share the ways that we don’t have enough money because we’re ashamed to admit that we’re struggling. We’ve internalized that our suffering is our fault and our fault alone because we must not be working hard enough.

 

I want to thank you for being an invitation to have such a raw, open and visceral discussion because I feel like a lot of the things that I talked about with you, I haven’t shared publicly, certainly because it’s this idea that we referenced in the article about keeping up some front, but I feel a deep sense of relief and openness having talked about this with you in this public forum. I appreciate you opening the space for this conversation and level of depth for us to share and examine this together. I feel better.

I hope that whoever’s tuning in has gained some perspective and relief knowing that maybe you’re not alone in your fears and your struggles. Feel like for whatever it’s worth, we are all in this together and be more honest and open about what we’re going through is I think part of the medicine that we all need as a society right now. Thank you for doing this and thank you to the audience for getting uncomfortable with us. This one for me at least felt like one of the most uncomfortable episodes yet. Through that discomfort, I feel a sense of deep relief and peace.

I think it always helps to cry. I don’t feel like I cry that much. I don’t like to force myself to cry, but I feel grateful when I do cry and allow that emotion to come out because there is a sense of relief on the other side like talking. Talk is therapy. It’s therapeutic for us to create these episodes. We hope that it’s therapeutic for you, the reader, and if it doesn’t feel therapeutic enough, that’s why we encourage you to talk to others, whoever that may be. If you don’t feel like you have that person in your life to turn to, which not everybody is fortunate to have, you can open up to us anytime. We are here to listen and we want to be as part of your life as you would like us to be. Please never hesitate to reach out and open up, share, write us an email if you’d like or comment on social media. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible and look for as many ways that we can to help give you the relief that you’re craving to because everyone deserves that. Everyone deserves to feel better.

Thank you. I love you. I appreciate you.

Until next time, thank you for tuning in.

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