MGU 34 | Using Supplements

 

One way of making sure you’re always at the very top of your game without too much risk for yourself is using supplements. These health items ensure that you can make the most of what you can do with yourself and your body. Jason Wrobel and Whitney Lauritsen lay out all the pros and cons of using supplements in your daily life. Will these items work towards making you a better version of yourself? Let Jason and Whitney help you figure out if it’s for you.

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The Ups And Downs Of Using Supplements

Do you remember the band, O-Town? There’s one guy in O-Town named Ashley Parker Angel, who emailed me.

Why? For what purpose?

It was like mass mailing at first. He has a supplement company. His company sent me supplements because they have done it rad and I took them. There are these focus supplements. I love experimenting with anything that can help me focus because that’s something that I struggle with a lot. I don’t have ADHD-type of symptoms, but it’s easy for me to get off track. I’ve been experimenting with focus supplements to see if they would help. I happen to have two brands sending me to focus on supplements. Melissa was over here and she was emailing. I looked at the email because the signature was Ash. I was like, “Melissa, you’re directly emailing with Ashley Parker Angel.” The funny thing was that Melissa encouraged me to try these supplements because they were made by Ashley Parker Angel. We were both geeking out because they were from making the band.

Is he taking his fifteen minutes of fame from the early 2000s and using that as a marketing context? It’s like, “Take these brain supplements from one of the guys from O-Town. Remember him?” What is the marketing pitch for this? That would be like Clay Aiken coming out with a line of food products and going, “Season two winner, Clay Aiken,” or was he the runner up?

I met Clay Aiken once at the Apple store. He came in. I can’t remember if I recognized him or not, but I had his ID. Back in the day, you had to show your ID when you made big purchases at the Apple store. I remember looking at his ID and being like, “That’s Clay Aiken.”

What you’re telling me is you had to card Clay Aiken for Apple products?

No, he had to give me his ID.

You had to card him. Do you still remember his song? It sounded very much like a Josh Groban song because it was like, “Lift me up. Fill me down.”

I get the two confused. That’s funny you say that because I have thought about that sometimes. I’m like, “Who’s who? Clay Aiken or Josh Groban?” I would say Josh Groban has had a longer-lasting career.

Because he captured part of the market that also likes Michael Bublé. I always think about the same fans that love Groban and love Bublé. I feel you can lump those people demographically in the same category. Anybody out there, if you’re a Josh Groban fan, you’re also probably a Bublé fan. We got on a crazy musical tangent, but you’re also looping in supplements to this.

I wanted to show you the website for these supplements. It’s called High Level. It’s funny because it says, “Another dimension where life is elevated.” It ties into our idea of elevation. I started taking the supplements so I don’t know much, but maybe they’ll become a sponsor. Who knows? Our co-founder starring in the blockbuster musical, Wicked, on Broadway which I did not know. Ashley Parker Angel became a breakout star in the hit ABC series, Making the Band. He became a teen heartthrob. Did you know that O-Town was signed by legendary music mogul, Clive Davis?

I didn’t. That’s impressive.

O-Town was a big deal at the time.

Marketing works on us as adults. Click To Tweet

Clive Davis, who also is legendary. We’re talking some of the biggest acts in history. He signed Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey to a deal.

What I’m saying is that Making the Band was legit. I’m guessing that whoever “Ash” signing those emails that went to our lovely assistant, Melissa, that’s Asher Parker Angel. If he’s on Broadway, how does he have time to respond to emails about a supplement company?

One of my best friends in the world was on Broadway for twelve years. The physical demand that it places on you is real because as a singer, you’re not doing one show a week. You’re doing multiple shows sometimes a day. Some of these Broadway shows will do two shows a day. That’s a lot of strain and stress to place on the body and the vocal cords. It’s interesting that he’s doing a supplement line.

Maybe it ties into all of that. Probably he was taking his own supplements because he’s got a whole list. There are a lot of them.

Is there anything for endurance energy or vocal?

They sent me a focus one and they sent me a magnesium supplement because you know that most people are deficient in magnesium. Dr. Mercola said, “80% of people are deficient in magnesium.”

Americans or humans?

It’s probably Americans. First of all, Melissa and I were geeking out. Our younger selves were like, “Ashley Parker Angel is emailing us.” That marketing worked on us as adults. We were like, “That’d be like Jonathan Taylor Thomas.” My inner child would be totally geeked out if I got to email Jonathan Taylor Thomas. Ashley Parker Angels’ company is called High Level and all of their products are in biodegradable bottles and they’re manufactured in a certified USDA organic inspected facility. They’re not just regular random supplements. They seem pretty legit and that’s why we wanted to try them.

The quality standards are up to snuff is what you’re saying.

I’ll have to test and see. They all have cool names too. There’s one called Respawn. It soothes your joints, reduces inflammation and eliminates swelling. They could very easily be a sponsor of this show, which they’re not. We may use it as an affiliate program for them.

I like the fact that he has different formulas for specific functional benefits in the body. It’s awesome in general because you and I frequent so many of the trade shows. We’ve been in this business for over a decade. Whitney and I both love to geek out on new products. It’s one of our favorite things to do. What I love is seeing not only high-quality standards in terms of sourcing and formulation. I like specific functional foods and functional supplements that it gives people an opportunity to address key areas of their life where they might be struggling because all of us are struggling with similar things. Getting to the heart of what your current challenge or struggle is in life and having products and things to support that.

This is a good topic because we’re talking about something from a lifestyle health perspective, but we’ll also be talking a lot about business. I’m a big fan of if you’re promoting something and they have an affiliate program where you can make commissions, you’re promoting it authentically, which we always do. We also may want to get a little kickback so we can fund things. We’re going to need more equipment so you can support this show. If we’re using an affiliate link and you decide to buy something, know that that’s an easy freeway for you to support us.

Whenever we recommend products, it’s also this idea of experimenting with ourselves first. I’m a huge fan of doing that. Not only the authenticity of I use this, but I can have a direct experience that we can share with you of how did it make us feel, what did we experience, what was our actual direct interaction with the product as opposed to a theoretical thing. It’s important. In all of the noise and all of the people in the wellness industry out there to make sure that people are aligned with and promoting things that they truly believe and that have worked for them. I always love treating new supplements and new foods as an experiment. It’s one of the most exciting parts about being in this industry. It’s like, “Let me try this out for a week or a month and see how I feel.”

MGU 34 | Using Supplements

Using Supplements: It’s important as a consumer to see not only high-quality standards in terms of sourcing and formulation, but also specific functional foods, minerals, and supplements at work.

 

Supplements are something that is very polarizing. Some people are anti-supplements. Whenever I read somebody’s reasons for being anti supplements, it’s mainly because they believe in getting all of those nutrients from food, which is fair. As Jason could talk about for a very long time, there are some things that are better assimilated in the body when they’re taking the supplemental form. Is that correct?

It is correct. It is a noble desire and noble aim to want to get all of our nutrition from food. Unless you are growing something in extremely nutrient-dense soil, you understand what’s gone into the soil. You understand the growing methods in. A lot of local farmers will tell you how they’re growing their food. Maybe for some readers out there who have their own garden, that’s a separate thing. If you’re going to the market and buying even organic produce, the fact is through topsoil erosion and pesticide usage, there are fewer nutrients in our soil. The soil is less healthy than it was, not only in our parents’ generation. If we go back to grandparents and great grandparents, produce and food, in general, are less nutrient-dense and less healthy than it was when our grandparents and our great grandparents were our age.

Knowing that you have to eat a much higher volume of food, higher quantity to get the same nutrient density levels. For me, people are always like, “Why do you promote all these superfoods and supplements that are so expensive?” I’m like, “The reality is if commercially grown food is less nutrient-dense, which it is, we need to replace that nutrition in some way. That’s why I love nutrient-dense foods and conscientiously made supplements, clean supplements. Supplements where you can trust the sourcing that is the third party verified. Yes, I want to promote that because we have to get proper nutrition in our bodies.” It’s not about vegan or vegetarian. No matter how you eat, it’s about the fact that our food supplies is less nutritious than it used to be. That’s why I think supplements and superfoods are so important to integrate.

Supplements get a bad rep in people’s minds because there are a lot of bad supplements out there. There are tons of junk-based supplements. Whenever I see things like, “This is organically certified, that’s very important to me,” If they’re using biodegradable packaging, they probably care a lot. That was the thing that stood out about this. If they’re very functional and they’re unique formulations. You can look for things like that, which are usually a good sign. Looking at other fillers and on and on, it’s also very confusing. I’m personally not that into multivitamins because generally, if there are too many nutrients, vitamins and minerals in one thing, it might not be right for your body. Part of me feels a lot of times it’s experimenting and tuning into your body.

When I take these focus supplements that I’ve experimented with a few times, it’s a very subtle difference in me. I have to track it over the long-term. I found the same thing with probiotics, which I’m passionate about. I’ve tried a lot of probiotics. I tune in, how do I feel and give myself at least a few days, a few weeks and a month is usually the best way to tell. A lot of people are not aware of how they feel, so it’s hard for them to tell if a supplement is making a difference or not.

It’s almost like there is such a high level of toxicity in people’s bodies that they don’t have the sensitivity to perceive how something is making them feel. It’s almost like people get a higher benefit from the foods they eat and the supplements they take if they cleanse their bodies. After a proper juice cleanses or a coffee enema or a series of colonics.

Eating a basic whole foods diet for an extended period of time. I feel having more fiber in your diet makes a massive difference. It’s very rewarding when you feel more sensitive or tracking things too. That’s something that I’m starting to get into is tracking my health. I’ve got an Apple Watch and I’ve been sleeping with it on so that I can track my sleep in a lot of different ways. What time do I go to bed and how do I feel the next day? Using apps to track my mood in the morning and see how that correlates with how much sleep I get, how often I was in REM, etc.

I have a smart scale so I can weigh myself, and that also gives body mass index and a few other readings and all that. That tracks through the data on my phone. To compile all of this and look at it on a daily basis, what was I eating, how much was I sleeping, how much was I working out, what are my body measurements according to the scale? Assessing all of that and becoming more sensitive to it. Taking the time to notice how you feel after anything you consume, whether it’s a supplement, a drink or a meal.

For example, I drank matcha tea in the morning and then I had coffee. Almost immediately after I had the coffee, I felt horrible. I knew it was the coffee because I didn’t feel horrible before when I had the matcha or it could have been the combination of the two. I had to start to figure out what does my body need? That’s where all the experimenting comes in. One of the things I do is rest or I drink a ton of water or I had some food because I realized I hadn’t eaten. Maybe the caffeine didn’t make me feel good because it was on an empty stomach.

My point is tuning in and noticing, “This is probably why I don’t feel good. What can I try to make myself feel better?” It’s not always obvious and it could be a cumulative effect. There are so many factors and it’s complicated. The more you are aware of yourself, the easier it is for you to start to see the patterns and what may or may not be making you feel good. That’s very true with supplements because if everything stays the same, you’re eating a regular whole foods diet, you’re sleeping well and you’re drinking enough water. If you cover all those bases, you’re moving your body, you can introduce supplements and see if you feel better. For the average person who might not be getting enough sleep, dehydrated, doesn’t move their body enough and eating a diet that’s very processed without a lot of fiber, they’re probably not going to feel great. Their body may not even know the difference between taking supplements or not.

As we change our choices, patterns and habits, we hear a lot about this in terms of the neuroplasticity of the brain. Also, in terms of the body, there are changes that people experience where it’s not only about the sensitivity and this growing awareness of how things are making you feel. The palette changes too big time and how your body responds or reacts to things you used to eat. I talked to people in my family, clients or even a dialogue with myself. Sometimes I’ll go back and I’ll eat something that I haven’t had in a long time. We were talking about donuts. Sometimes I’ll have a fried, gluttony donut.

I noticed that I had this fried, sugary thing. You could go back and you have this thing and the initial hit is the sensory pleasure of the sugar, the carbs and this feeling of, “Yes.” It’s like a drug high. Once the drug high ends, you’re like, “I feel like crap.” It’s interesting to observe that our bodies are changing. For instance, a few years ago, I could have eaten that and not even paid attention to the fact. After I came down off the sugar and carb high, I would feel like crap because it was almost like that was the standard of like, “I’m eating all this junk food even though it’s vegan or plant-based.”

The sensitivity and the self-awareness we cultivate to pay attention to what our body’s telling us is something that develops over time. As we eat cleaner, perhaps we have a mindfulness practice, we start taking better care of ourselves. This runs to counter what most of us have been raised in our culture, which is what do you do if you don’t feel good? You take a pill. The idea of self-care can be looked at. I get messages like this sometimes of like, “How narcissistic. What is this self-love, self-care thing? It’s so selfish.” I want to reclaim the word selfish because it’s been always viewed as this negative thing if you’re being selfish. If you start with yourself, you start to heal yourself. As we start to take better care of ourselves, that ripple effect not only touches us on a biological and psycho-spiritual level but has a ripple effect on our friends, our family, our livelihood.

Food supplies in the present are much less nutritious than they used to be. Click To Tweet

You and I were talking about these feelings of anger and how that affects people around you. That cliché idea of putting on the oxygen mask first because I remember thinking about that when I was younger. They show a picture of an adult next to a kid and you’re like, “What an asshole.” Adults putting on the oxygen mask before the kid. You realize if they put it on the kid and they passed out, the kid would have oxygen but they’d be helpless otherwise. It’s like you’re saying that if you take care of yourself, you can be a happier and healthier person and all these other ways that you can help others.

When we learn how to take care of ourselves beyond our health too like our physical state, that ties into health as well. When we learn about our mental health, which is such a big thing, it gained so much attention. I feel like the media is drawing more and more attention to mental health, which is helpful, important because mental health plays a big role in everything in our lives. If we can learn to examine, understand, heal and address our own mental health, whether you call it selfish or not. To your point, it’s not selfish because if we don’t take care of our mental health, it can have a disastrous ripple effect. Whether we’re causing harm to other people physically, emotionally, or we’re disengaged. Most of our challenges come down to things like mental health.

It’s a complicated issue because first of all, we have such a limited understanding of the brain and how it works. In terms of more quantum type of science, we don’t know where thoughts come from. This idea of emotional health and mental health being not only about the physiological aspects of the brain but emotions and how we believe our thoughts. The more spiritual aspects of it, the chemicals in our body, the genetics and how we eat. There are many fascinating layers to the topic of mental health. Obviously, we’re best friends. I’ve been researching and diving into because of my own battle with feeling suicidal and clinically depressed a few years ago. I want to know about this because having suffered with it and still struggling with it, it’s nowhere near the severity it used to be. At least once a year, the multi-headed Hydra will come back and go like, “You thought you’re enough of me.” It’s not about “curing depression,” but cultivating tools, perspectives and practices that help us deal with those feelings and deal with our physiology, thoughts, emotions in a more healthy, balanced way.

To bring it full circle, supplements were a big part of you healing that. A lot of people tend to say, “Supplements don’t work for me,” or, “I don’t need supplements,” so nobody needs them. That’s where it becomes dangerous because talk about selfishness. Just because you don’t need supplements, it doesn’t mean somebody else doesn’t. For you, Jason, that was a huge thing to realize that you were chemically imbalanced.

There were layers to that. My ego was so resistant to admit that it was even a possibility because the idea of admitting that I was chemically imbalanced, which I was, the neurotransmitters were not balanced and not working optimally. To say that, I felt such a sense of shame around it. Here I am, this chef, health practitioner and wellness advocate. If I’m imbalanced, I’m a chemically imbalanced, clinically depressed person. It was this fear of that invalidating everything. Could people take me seriously as a wellness advocate? When the healer admits that they are not well, what does that mean? My ego was resistant for so long to getting those tests and seeing the truth, but the only way for us to create a plan of healing and recovery is to see the stark bare truth.

That’s like the cliché of a therapist needs help as much as their patients do. I feel like a lot of people are drawn to psychology is because they want to work on themselves. They want to help other people. I find this all the time with a lot of the things that I end up creating, whether it’s videos, eBooks or programs, whatever it is that I’m doing. This is true with both of us when we work together. We’re drawn to helping people work through the things that we’ve either already worked through or we’re currently working through. We want to share our pain points. We can feel very sensitive to other people experiencing the same type of pain. As you’ve witnessed, when you acknowledge your depression and how you healed it, you found a lot of people being very grateful for you sharing that.

Coming back to this selfish versus selflessness. Had you not overcome your ego, in that case, to figure out what the root was and acknowledge some things that were hard for you to acknowledge, you would not have been able to help as many people. It’s coming back to that, putting on the oxygen mask first. You had to admit, despite what your ego wanted you to do, that you were struggling with something nutritionally. Once you did, you were able to help a lot more people. Maybe this conversation is opening people’s minds to being mindful of whether or not they need supplements. You only know if you test yourself. This is part of the reason I’m not a big fan of multivitamins in general, not all my multivitamins, which is the average one.

A lot of them are like a mishmash of stuff and different formulations that might not necessarily work for your specific needs. It’s important to get things like blood tests to find out what you are deficient in and what do you need more of. Can you get that from food or would it be helpful for you to get it from supplements? Supplements are not necessarily the only way to get those nutrients, but to your point, they’re faster, easier, more consistent thing because you’re getting a measured dosage of that nutrient versus food. It depends on where it grows and how long it’s been sitting in. When it comes to our food, especially produce, the nutrient level in produce is dependent on the soil. It’s dependent on what was sprayed on it or what fertilizer or how long it’s been transported, how long it’s been in the store, how long it’s been in your home, all of these factors.

It’s dependent brilliantly on the individual.

There is one thing I wanted to do was for you to try that tea. Speaking of quality, I have a big passion for beverages more than food. The beverage is a big thing for me. I had different beverages a day. I have the matcha tea with MCT oil. I had coffee with MCT oil. I had sparkling water with the longevity soda. The fourth thing of the day is this tea. One of my greatest pleasures is when somebody tries something that I’ve made. I brewed this up over ice. Jason and I both have a glass of this. Jason is about to try it for the first time.

It tastes very close to Thai iced tea. It has a floral light, but also creamy thing going on. Is it like jasmine or honeysuckle?

I don’t have the container in front of me.

It’s not rose.

MGU 34 | Using Supplements

Using Supplements: The sensitivity and self-awareness we cultivate to pay attention to what our body’s telling us is something that develops over time.

 

It is from rose. It’s mixed with something that rhymes with Thai. It’s chai. It’s a rose petal chai iced tea. It was a loose-leaf tea that I got in the Goddess Provisions Box, which is my favorite subscription box. I’m also an affiliate of theirs. I brewed that up. I blended the tea with the Cave Shake fat pack, which is powdered coconut milk. It’s fantastic. It got creamy from that. I added in the You Are Loved Monk Fruit Powder, which is my favorite sweetener. I knew I had to stop you because if I didn’t, it would’ve gotten too diluted and you would’ve missed out on that amazing flavor experience.

I like that you built the layers of flavor in this, which is cool because my experience of rose in a product is like, “There’s rose here.” It’s an unmistakable thing. The cool thing about this is it’s complex enough where your brain is trying to dissect all of the flavors without necessarily being one thing that dominates. This isn’t something you want to chug. It’s something you want to savor. To wind it back, it’s important going back to a lot of the mental health issues in our culture. People are so “busy.” I don’t feel people are sitting down to savor things as much anymore. They’re flying through meals. They’ve got their phone out. They’re scrolling through and looking at their feed or their email while they’re eating. To sit down and have something to savor it in terms of a meal or a beverage or anything. Sex, massage, whatever you want to do, but take more time to savor things in life. I feel like everyone is rushing around trying to get somewhere, be something, hustle and grind. Even in real-time to have a moment of genuinely savoring something that was made with love and intention. Let’s all do more of that.

This also comes back to what we were saying at the beginning. We were talking about physical sensitivity based on your diet and your lifestyle, all those important physical health factors. We were talking about mental. It’s interesting because I feel like emotional and mental, they’re the same thing but also a little bit different. When I think of the brain, I think of how the things I’m doing in my life are making me feel and how my brain is responding to it. When I’m talking about how I feel physically versus how I’m feeling emotionally, when I think of mental, it’s like the bridge between the two. My definition might not be the textbook’s definition of mental versus emotional. What I was going to say was that in terms of emotional sensitivity, which is a very important topic, is that you start to appreciate moments like you pointed out.

You appreciate things like how taking that little break to enjoy the tea feels for you and how important that is. Emotional sensitivity also helps me make decisions on things like supplements. I had an emotional reaction to High Level nutrition, Ashley Parker Angel’s company. There was a nostalgia that it had for me. That’s one factor, but also there’s something about the website and the branding. There’s something important to me about what packaging they use and all of those things factored into my desire to try these products. The same thing goes with this tea that we’re having. You are pointing out how it’s made with love. Not only did I compile it together, brew it, blend it, but the brands that I used to make this tea, I also feel an emotional reaction to them.

The packaging of this tea that I use, the chai rose tea, I thought, “This is so beautiful.” I looked at the ingredients and I thought, “This is going to be such a nice combination.” I tasted it and my taste buds are very happy. The same thing with Cave Shake. Jason and I had been a fan of it for a long time. They have this fat pack powder, which is powdered coconut milk. I have an emotional reaction to them. I like and trust that company. I wanted to put them in this drink. The same thing with You Are Loved Monk Fruit. I love the way it tastes. I loved my experience with the owner. I love the name of it. When you combine all of that together, it creates another emotional level and experience for your food. That’s something that’s very important to me. I know it’s important to Jason as well. When we choose what restaurants to go to, what products to buy, what people to spend time with and who to support, it’s very important to each of us to align ourselves, associate ourselves, support whatever makes us feel energetically good.

It’s all down to vibration and frequency. We know that different emotions vibrate at different frequencies as do colors, as do the energy in which people use to create things. I think about growing up in my family with food. Going back to food about emotions and emotional health. We’re talking about Rose, who was my original culinary inspiration along with my mom. She would infuse so much love and intention with the desire to nourish her food. She wasn’t using the healthiest ingredients. If we’re talking about the qualitative benefit of the foods, she wasn’t buying organic. She wasn’t looking at the quality or the sourcing, but when she took those foods and she put her hands in the dough and made fresh noodles, fresh soup, perogies or cakes or anything. For my birthday, my Grandma Rose would always make me a banana bread cake with vanilla frosting. That was every year. It’s the best banana bread ever.

Is that what your mom makes?

My mom makes a version of that. She could probably make that for the holidays.

Is that your mom’s recipe?

That pumpkin bread is mom’s recipe. My mom is Susan Wrobel. She is also part of my culinary history and culinary inspiration. Her specialty is baking. She makes these baked goods that are innovative, creative, gluten-free and vegan. Her brain and her creativity in that process as opposed to me where I don’t enjoy baking. It’s not my thing, but take it back to how she was raised and my grandma’s MO was you put the love into it. You could feel it even though the quality of the ingredients or she wasn’t paying attention to the sourcing. That wasn’t even a thing she was thinking about in the ‘80s when I was a little boy. When you take something that is grown and formulated with intention and purpose and you have a level of presence, you put love and you create food or a drink as you did, you create anything. I don’t care if it’s music, art, film, this show, any creative endeavor. If you infuse it with the intention to support, nourish and love whoever is receiving it, that’s a very high vibration and energetic imprint. The people who are open to receiving that are going to feel it.

If they’re sensitive, people feel it no matter what. Some people feel it stronger than others. People like to make fun of people that are into crystals or goddess type stuff, high vibration and meditation. That’s fine. Everybody can have their prerogative in terms of their opinions on these things. I personally resonate with anything that’s energetically aligned. I love aromatherapy. I love crystals. I love the color. I’m very drawn to vibrancy. I feel good around it. To transition into the term feeling good, I had an interesting conversation with a mutual friend of Jason and mine. She was talking about how she’s working hard to change her relationship with sugar. She kept using this term, “Flip the switch.”

She’s using some therapy that is helping her flip the switch from going to sugar and sweet things for emotional pleasure. It was such a fascinating conversation because I started to reflect back on my own relationship with any type of stimulant. These type of either “actual addictions.” Some of us think we’re addicted to things, but we’re not. Some people do get addicted to any type of substance, sugar, coffee, chocolate, drugs, alcohol, social media, whatever it is. There are things we consume physically and there are all the things that we consume emotionally. That’s an ongoing thing. It’s a human thing. We are looking for pleasure. As humans, we are wired to seek out pleasure wherever we can find it. We become addicted to getting pleasure, whether literally or theoretically addicted to it.

I was fascinated by that because I have a big desire to optimize. Jason and I have this in common. This will be a common theme of the show. Our journeys and experiments with optimizing ourselves and supplements, which has been a theme of this. How you’re making food and the things that you’re choosing, that’s about optimizing. You’re optimizing based on what makes you feel good and becoming more sensitive to it. It’s interesting if you step back and think about your relationship with anything that you frequently go to give yourself pleasure.\

MGU 34 | Using Supplements

Using Supplements: You have to step back and think about your relationship with food, and experiment with different kinds of diets and how these diets affect your relationship with sugar.

 

One of the best parts of being alive is experiencing mental or physical pleasure. It’s all about how often. That was my friend’s point. She said there’s nothing wrong with sweets or sweeteners, but it was the fact that she was dependent on it to make herself feel good or that was her go-to. If she was having a bad day, if she was stressed, if she was feeling upset about something, whether it was with her relationship, she would find herself going to the same type of foods over and over again to feel better. That’s very common. A lot of people do that. I had to step back and think about my relationship with food. I’ve been experimenting with this a lot as I’ve tried out the plant-based version of the keto diet, low carb and how that shifted my relationship with sugar because I’m having so much less.

I’m not consuming much sugar at all. Sometimes in the form of carbohydrates depending on how you define sugar in your mind. Reducing the number of carbohydrates I’m having has drastically changed my relationship with food because I’ve been stricter about it. I don’t go to something simply because I’m craving it. My cravings have been reduced for the most part, but there are still things that I think about. Coming back to mental versus physical, a mental craving for something versus a physical craving for it. Sometimes your whole body is salivating thinking about something. You feel yourself getting physically stimulated by the thought of having a certain food versus what I find harder and more persistent for myself is a mental desire to have something.

This whole conversation with my friend came up because we had dinner together and afterward, I said to her, “Do you want to go get dessert?” We went to go somewhere else because I’m not having sugar. My options are very limited. She said, “I’m going to say no right now because of this therapy I’m going through to help me flip the switch,” was her phrase so that she would stop seeking out sweets for a knee-jerk reaction pleasure. I stepped back and thought about, “Why did I suggest that we get dessert?” It was because I was looking for more pleasure. I was enjoying her company and I thought, “What would make me feel even better is if we went and got dessert afterward.”

I didn’t feel that physically attached to whether or not I had dessert, but emotionally, I was looking for more pleasure because I was thinking about how nice it would feel to go with my friend to get dessert and to have dessert together. It’s a little bonding thing like, “I get to go have whatever from this place that I don’t normally go to.” It’s fascinating to me. It’s quite complex. Coming back to sensitivity and awareness, you have to work on your consciousness and your awareness about yourself to notice your habits and your patterns.

Take inventory of things. Patterns exist for all of us, but if we’re not aware of the pattern and on a deeper level, what is initiating the behavior that leads to a pattern. You talk about sugar. That’s been one of my biggest things. I started noticing when I would take inventory of my emotional state or what was the impetus before I started reaching for the sugar.

Sugar is hard to define. What’s your definition?

I’m talking about cookies, chocolate, sweets and ice cream.

Are they made with monk fruit or stevia or are they made with other types of sugars?

Agave, coconut sugar, cane sugar, those kinds of things. I started noticing for me, and this is the practice of presence, we’re talking about sensitivity, but I also want to insert what we talked about was this idea of presence. Being present and focused on what is happening at the moment, I started to realize that it was not about the sugar at all. The sugar was an emotional crutch for when I was feeling lonely, heartbroken, despondent, and I was not getting a level of physical attention or romantic attention that I wanted. It was a chemical substitute for the good feelings or if we want to go a level deeper, the oxytocin that I wasn’t getting in my life. We always joke about when you go through a breakup, what’s the first thing that most people reach for in a breakup? Chocolate and ice cream, but specifically chocolate has phenylethylamine. It has theobromine, which mimics in the brain and light up the same reward centers as when we’re in love.

The brain has been chemically addicted to being “in love.” We know that there’s a different set of chemicals that are flowing through the body and the brain when we are in love with someone. When we perceive that love has ended or that love has left, the brain wants its fix. To us, it’s this emotional crutch. Also, going back to the chemical part of it, it’s a very chemical thing of reaching for these sugary things, reaching for the chocolate specifically because those compounds in the chocolate are lighting up the same centers of our brain as if we’re in love. Understanding that for me, when I was feeling loveless, heartbroken, lonely, I would reach for those things because I wanted to feel something.

Anything is better than feeling this loneliness, despondent and heartbroken, but what you realize consistently is it doesn’t take away those feelings. It might mask them for a little while because you’re chemically high for a little while on the sugar or the compounds in the food. We’re not getting to the root cause, which is why do I feel so lonely? What thought forms or patterns have I attached to this person or this situation thinking that I don’t deserve love? Thinking that this illusion of loneliness that I could call up a friend who deeply loves me and be radically honest and say, “Could you come over here right now and give me a hug? Can you embrace me? Can I spend time with you?”

It’s never about the food. It’s never about the chemicals. In most cases, it’s about us thinking that those things are going to address a deeper need within us instead of pausing. When we’re reaching for that ice cream or reaching for the chocolate bar, what I started doing to help me with the sugar addiction was to say, “What do I need right now?” It’s a pattern interrupt, to physically stop myself. It wasn’t the sugar. It was, “I feel lonely.” Why don’t I have the courage to reach out to someone I love and say, “I’m in a bad place right now. I feel lonely. Can we talk? Could you come over?” That’s addressing a deeper emotional, psycho-spiritual need than constantly getting into that cycle as we’re saying of masking it with sugar. For me, I’m sharing that story because it was about a deeper emotional or spiritual need than filling my body with those food products.

That’s true of any pleasure. For example, if you’re addicted to sex, it’s a pleasure thing. You want that pleasure so badly. I have a massive pleasure reaction to watching TV, YouTube or movies. That gives me deep pleasure. It’s an escape. A lot of people experience escape. When I started intermittent fasting, I realized the addiction I had to pleasure in that sense. I often will watch something at night to wind-down. That in itself is some pattern for pleasure. I’ve been doing that since I grew up. My family does that. Another thing is in this conversation with my friend, we were talking about a lot of the times the types of pleasure we seek out are from things that made us feel good when we are growing up or patterns from our family.

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I see my parents always watch a movie or a TV show together at night. That’s their bonding thing. It’s very sweet. Back to growing up, we never watched an excessive amount of TV. Maybe it was an hour or two a night, but we would do it as a family. There was quality time. As an adult, even when I’m alone, I find such pleasure in watching things. It’s escapism. It’s turning off your brain. It’s all these things a lot of us to seek. When I started intermittent fasting a few months ago, my version of intermittent fasting is 16-8. You fast for sixteen hours and you eat within an eight-hour window of the day. For me, it’s four hours before I go to sleep and four hours after I wake up, give or take.

When I stopped eating four hours before bed, typically those four hours I would spend watching but maybe an hour or two of that time. That’s when I would lay in bed and watch YouTube or Netflix or whatever it was. It was so tough for me at first to not eat while watching something. I started to recognize how much of a pattern I developed of pleasure eating and watching something because both were so pleasurable. I love to snack. I felt physically and probably emotionally uncomfortable at first for probably the first week or two like, “I’m not going to eat something while I’m watching this.”

After a time, I got used to it. It wasn’t that big of a deal. At first, it was tough. That was a big eye-opener for me because I didn’t realize that was why I was snacking late at night because I was associating snacking with watching something and that dual pleasure, how that was probably contributing to weight gain and maybe disrupting my sleep. Who knows what that was doing for me? The pleasure was strong that I was willing to overlook all the ways that might’ve been disrupting my life or my health because it was pleasurable.

That’s a big thing for people. This is going to come up a lot and I feel we could do a whole episode about social media. Use addictions as a very loose term, but it’s almost like an addiction whether it’s real or not, of being so drawn to social media and looking for pleasure on social media. For me at least, social media is unknown territory in terms of I’m either going to go on social media and find a lot of pleasure or I’m going to go on social media and feel down about myself. Get into the comparison trap.

It’s an extremely polarizing thing. To flip back to this idea though of pleasure-seeking, a book that you recommended years ago that I love is The Pleasure Trap by Dr. Douglas Lisle. It breaks down our historical genetic, biological imperative for this behavior. As hunter-gatherers, we were wired and developed this neurological program of seeking out the highest caloric yield for the least amount of work. If I can go out and I can have my physical and biological needs met and exert the least amount of energy, I can hopefully save those energy reserves for running away from the saber tooth tiger or hunting the next day. It is a biological genetic code in our matrix as humans to get the highest yield of something for the least amount of effort.

That’s part of the reason why people take supplements. It’s much easier to get all of your nutrients in a pill versus eating a full meal.

I also think it’s why people have junk food, take pharmaceutical drugs, addicted to social media, porn, and everything because it’s instant gratification and pleasure hit. I’m getting my fix, whether it’s caloric, energetic, psychological hit. To go off on a tangent, but it’s relatable is the state of dating. I’ve talked to many people. More and more of that are disillusioned with online dating because they feel it’s shopping for a human being. It’s like Amazon for humans, but also what has that done? It’s taken away so much of the effort of going out and meeting people in public the way we used to and courting someone. The process of how we engage romantically with each other is vastly different in terms of our level of effort when we can throw up our smartphone and burn through our right fingers swiping. It’s not about even going out and “hunting for someone” anymore.

That’s another example of this pleasure trap and the biological imperative. I’m going to stay up at night swiping because it’s less energy to try and get what I want. Yes, technology is wonderful in terms of alleviating a lot of the banality of life. A lot of the things that we don’t need to be focusing on anymore. In terms of human interaction and human relationship, it’s making some things funky, our relationship to ourselves, but how we’re relating to other people. Technology is a very slippery slope. I know you’re into it. We’re both fascinated by it in terms of where is this taking us in terms of our collective evolution, not only biologically but psychologically as well as humans.

We are talking about how important it is to get your mental health under control and to be more aware. That’s the theme of this is being sensitive and conscious of how you’re feeling, aware of yourself. Self-awareness is important as we get deeper and deeper into technology, whether it’s genetics, family life, all of these factors. I grew up pretty emotionally stable. I could tell that based on the relationship to other people. I’m not somebody that would usually use the term addicted very much. Even though I’ve said it several times, I’ve never felt like addicted to coffee or sugar. I never got into alcohol or drugs or not prone to being addicted to sex or other major forms of pleasure.

All of these things a lot of people struggle with. My struggles with any of that have been pretty minimal. That’s because I grew up in a very emotionally safe, stable household and town where I grew up, all of those factors that contribute to this. My point being is that because of that emotional stability and awareness that I cultivated younger, I feel like as an individual, my relationship with technology is very stable. I can use technology and put it down. I don’t feel I have to be on social media every day. I have to be on Instagram. I have to do this or that. However, I do also notice when I am. If I find myself mindlessly scrolling through Instagram, watching a ton of YouTube videos or watching a lot of television, whatever my relationship with technology, because of my self-awareness, I am able to be mindful of my relationship with that.

I can only speak to my personal experience. What I’ve noticed in some other people is that if they don’t have that awareness or if they grew up being prone to addictions, if they grew up with not a lot of emotional stability or tools or whatever it is, they’re a little bit more prone to misusing things or becoming addicted, seeking out pleasure in places like technology because that’s their outlet. That’s why it’s important for people to work on their mental health and become more self-aware. It’s like putting on that oxygen mask first because it does have a ripple effect. Somebody who is using a dating app simply for pleasure or to run away from something, they could have a whole domino effect.

Let say it’s a woman who’s like, “I have to get the approval of men or I need the pleasure of sex.” She’s on these dating apps finding men, going out with them. Those men, what if they fall for her and she rejects them. There’s this domino effect of all these men that she has had some relationship, some dynamic with. Maybe those men have a completely different relationship to technology, dating apps as she does. That’s where I’m saying that it isn’t selfish to work on your mental health and your personal awareness because to your very point about sugar, you’re recognizing that you are seeking out sugar, an emotional Band-Aid. That is only affecting you and your health.

Let’s say that you’re a version of an emotional band-aid was to go and toy around with a lot of women and whatever that means for you. You could be breaking a lot of hearts. Because of you and what your needs were, you’re affecting other people. What’s happening is becoming socially acceptable to do that. We have to step back and examine our relationship. We should do this in another episode. As a little teaser, talking about how we use social media and why is huge and a very important topic because it is in some ways getting a bit out of hand. It’s also inevitable because there are many pros and cons to social media. It gives us a connection to people all around the world, but it also can do a lot of harm. I’m passionate about self-awareness because if we had more self-awareness and more people were self-aware. If more people could see the connection between what they were doing and why they were doing it, that would help alleviate a lot of pain amongst individual and their relationships with each other.

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I want to comment on that from my own experience in terms of online dating, specifically as a microcosm of this conversation. Also, how my experience with that related to honoring my feelings and my perspectives as an individual rather than buying into the, “You ought to feel this way because other people are feeling this way.” The thing is what I’m observing, the age ranges don’t matter but online dating seems to be ubiquitous in the Millennial and Gen X cultures. Most of the people I know are doing some form of it. I’ve had probably three or four rounds of dipping back in. I remember that I started to get this feeling that I was being so extremely judgmental of the women that I was swiping through.

Extremely judgmental of myself and negatively self-conscious about the photos, the description, the bio and constantly editing it and wondering, “Should I pay to put a picture of me and my dog, me and my cat? Women would want to see a picture of a warm, sensitive guy with animals.” Being manipulative and trying to do something specifically to get the desired effect. I feel like people are doing this to capture attention, to get the person they think they want. What are we doing? We’re seeing words on a page and photos on a page. What we’re not getting is the energy and the interplay of the energy of being physically present with a person.

For me, what I started to realize was I started to feel icky about it. I was shopping for a woman the same way I would shop for a Wi-Fi router on Amazon or the same way I would shop for a new car. It’s like, “That’s a little too big. That’s a little too small. There’s a black one, there’s a red one.” For me, it became a feeling that we are commodifying these women, treating them as products. That started to feel gross to me. I started to feel emotionally negative about the experience of online dating. I removed myself from it because I didn’t want to feel like I was commodifying human beings. My psychological interplay with that action was starting to view these women, not as human beings but shopping for a car or a new watch. I didn’t like that. The whole thing was like, “If you want to meet someone great, online date.” Even my psychotherapist was like, “You should go on an online date.” That’s when I went back and did it because I love him. He’s a great psychotherapist, but it doesn’t feel like it resonates with me and my heart.

It’s tricky because then you had this FOMO thing whereas, “If I don’t online date, maybe I’m going to miss the woman of my dreams who’s online.”

If I trust myself and what my heart is telling me to do, which is not to do it because of the reasons I detailed. Wouldn’t the person I want to be with have a very similar perspective? I trust the FOMO you’re taught because I’ve had that feeling. I truly think that for me, whatever the partner I would ultimately manifest would have a similar type of relationship like, “Yes, I felt like it was icky too,” for whatever her reasons were. It comes back to honoring ourselves as an individual. There’s a term called the tyranny of the majority, where we see what everyone else is doing and feel that in order to fit into the collective, we need to adhere to a certain set of beliefs or behaviors so that we aren’t ostracized from the group.

The individual journey being radically loving and honoring to the messages our minds and our hearts are giving us when they feel resonant and following that into the wilderness. Joseph Campbell, he’s one of my favorite authors, the famous mythologist said, “The point of the adventure is the darkest part of the forest.” It’s the part where there’s no path. If you’re on a path, it’s a path that someone’s already laid out. You’re already walking someone else’s path. I’m using this example as this idea that we need to trust ourselves and the messages we’re getting, even if they run completely counter to what everyone else is doing and the way everyone else says we ought to be.

That’s tricky. Social media has made that trickier too because we as humans tend to want to do what other people are doing. When you go on social media and you’re looking at hundreds or thousands of people doing things, it can be tough. Jason and I are big believers in meditation. Jason has a very strong meditation practice. Mine is admittedly not as consistent, but I understand that meditation is one of the most important things for us to do, especially in this day and age of social media, the comparison trap. We have to come down to center ourselves. The big theme of this show has been self-awareness because when you become self-aware, then you can tap into your intuition and learn how to trust it and learn when things feel good or when they don’t.

Do they feel good for the right reasons? The gut feeling versus do they feel good because they are pleasurable? The more that we can tune in, the easier it is for us to figure out what our path is, which is another thing that Jason and I are very passionate about. One of the big reasons that I feel like we started collaborating on this project was to help people on their path because it’s easy to feel lost. Social media, in a way, bonds us and brings us together, but it can also draw us apart because people feel like, “If I’m not like the majority, maybe there’s something wrong with me.” That’s what a lot of people feel is that comparison, “I don’t look like this person. I don’t act like this person. I don’t have the same things as this person does,” on and on.

It’s like, “Do I need to change in order to be that?” In your case, “I don’t want to online date. It doesn’t make me feel good, but everyone’s saying I should.” You start to question yourself, but you do it and you think, “This doesn’t feel good. I was right. This is not for me.” I know firsthand that I don’t think I’ve had a single long-term relationship off of online dating. I’ve had short-term relationships off of online dating. I know people that I’ve met through online dating, some couples, but I also know a ton of people who have met offline.

It’s grown to become more and more common. To your point, whatever it does, it’s concentrated. I can swipe and browse and it’s easier to do this. I don’t have to get up and go to the bar. I don’t have to go to the party. I don’t have to do the socializing. I can go on this app, find somebody and chat with them and decide if I like the way they look. It’s concentrated and less risky. Online dating is a greater chance of meeting somebody who’s taking a shortcut in a way. I don’t mean for that to be judgmental because we’re not saying there’s anything wrong with online dating, but it is a shortcut.

It goes back to that point that I made, that we are biologically wired as humans to get the highest reward for the least amount of effort. It’s an example of this. It’s not judging, it’s talking about how are our basic, most reptilian biology is still there in our brain chemistry.

That’s true with most technology. If you look at the development of technology, it’s usually giving us tools to save us time. As human beings, we want to save time. It’s all about efficiency, which is a big theme in that book, The Pleasure Trap. Humans are like, “How can I save time? How can I save resources?” It comes down to like a very basic human drive. I’m drawn to that too. I love technological shortcuts. I love technological advances. I find great pleasure in that. How can I maximize my day to put the least amount of effort and energy into things and get the most amount of reward? That’s why people are so drawn to social media and online dating. You can lie in bed and find your next partner long-term or short-term or one night, whatever it is. As opposed to getting up and putting on makeup or putting on the right outfit and going out and standing around in a room. Do you find anyone attractive there? Are you going to end up talking to them? It’s hard to meet somebody in person compared to online dating.

What we’re talking about too and you touched on it very briefly is shortcuts and risk aversion. The thing that I wonder though is if we are trading our sense of boldness, courageousness and a solid work ethic in exchange for these “shortcuts.” It’s my concern that a lot of our fortitude and our will is being exchanged for these shortcuts. I wanted to give a quick example. It’s funny how our desires and our fears play into all this. Whitney and I in Philadelphia on a business trip. We go to the Natural Products Expo East and we’re in Philadelphia visiting friends. We went up to this beer tasting place. There was this cute girl in a car outside of the beer place. She’s there with her kid in the car. They’re like, “This girl is checking you out. You should say hi. She’s cute.” I was feeling all shy.

Why was I feeling shy? Because I am not in the practice of going up to random women I have never met, even if they’re shooting energy at me and introducing myself like, “What am I going to say? I saw you looking at me. You’re cute.” I didn’t know what to say. All these things are playing through my head. “Is she going to think I’m a creep? Is she going to reject me? What do I say?” I ultimately was like, “There’s an opportunity here to connect with a person.” What if instead of trying to be strategic about it or protect my ego or protect myself from rejection, go up and say whatever comes to my mind. Sometimes no plan is the best plan. I went up and I was like, “I’m Jason. I was there with my friends. They were elbowing me because they thought you were cute. I think you’re cute too. I want to come up and say hello and introduce myself.”

It’s amazing to witness as a woman. I was sitting there going, “I hope this woman appreciated that,” because you were so vulnerable. Part of your point is that vulnerability is a practice. If you haven’t read any of Brené Brown’s about vulnerability and shame and all of that, a lot of us go to online dating because it’s less vulnerable. We can hide behind our screens and we can put up the most perfect photos of us. As a woman, I don’t spend a ton of time getting ready. The effort it takes to put on makeup, brush my hair, pick out an outfit, all of that. It’s exhausting. How much better than you take a photo of you looking your best and slap it up on some online dating site and then there you go.

We have that issue, which I’m sure men experience a lot more. It’s like you meet a woman in person and she might not look like those photos anymore or at that very moment. It’s misleading. Coming back to your experience in Philadelphia. How amazing that you could go up and be vulnerable, be yourself. You weren’t prepared. You weren’t out there that day looking to date. You were hanging out with your friends. You are the real you. That’s incredibly refreshing. That’s something most of us want. To your point, you almost didn’t do it because you were out of practice. Think of how many missed opportunities there are. The misconnection is you see somebody and you’re interested in them, but your fear or your lack of practice gets in your way. Think of how many people misconnecting with another because of that. It’s sad.

What do people say? “I’m not ready.” Readiness, yes. I do believe that preparation can make it easier for us to seize opportunities when they come. I also believe that there is a part of our cosmology, as beings that need to get better at improvising at the moment when we don’t feel prepared or ready. Many friends of ours have become parents and every single one has said like, “Ready? It’s our first kid. You can read all the books and you can do all of the things.” I remember the first car I ever worked on when I was sixteen with my cousin. He’s like, “This is how you take out transmission and this is how you know you work on it.”

Yes, theoretically but was I ready to rip a transmission out of ‘78 Pontiac Grand LeMans. No, I didn’t know what I was doing, but yet life begs us to be courageous. Life begs us to jump into the void and trust that we will be okay. This is coming up in some form all the time for all of us. The overall message here is for us to build the muscle of jumping into the void, being courageous and practicing this in different ways in our life. Instead for some of us hiding behind what’s convenient, hiding behind what’s “easy” because that’s a conditioning that our society is inculcating us in us. That’s slowly eroding our will, slowly eroding our courage and slowly eroding our vulnerability.

I have this joke in my stand-up set about when you start dating someone, usually the first date is instead of you, it’s your PR representative. It’s like “I’m Jason. I was the first plant-based chef with a show on the Cooking Channel. I am the owner of five animals. All rescued and yes, I am up for the Nobel Peace Prize, which is the great cause, then it could be the Wrobel Peace Prize. How about you?” She goes on to tell me about saving children in Rwanda and that she graduated from Yale with Magna cum Laude. You know well six months from there, eight months from there when you guys are dating, what happens? She’s going to show up in sweatpants, period panties and stains on her shirt and her hair undone. You’re going to realize she has daddy issues.

I’m going to show up with my abandonment issues with kale chips stuck in my teeth, smoking a joint or whatever. Let’s be more transparent when we meet people. How about a question like this, “What keeps you up at night? What’s the most challenging thing in your life right now? What are you in pain about?” We don’t ask these questions on the first dates. It’s like, “Here I am in my perfect world.” Eight months later, you’re like, “I didn’t know you were screwed up.” We’re all screwed up. This is a huge thing for Whitney and me. Bringing reality, vulnerability and realness of we’re all in pain and we’re all suffering. We all have things we’re working on.

Let’s not hide those things and act like we’re all perfect. I don’t mean dating. I mean in the world in general. Come as you are, trust that you are enough, even when you’re imperfect, even as you are flawed. Even as you’re trying to grow, you’re struggling to grow, you’re struggling to change. We are all in the same boat, all of us to different degrees, but truly I believe that is what unites us in the human condition is striving to be greater. Also not that, but the acknowledgment of our flaws, our pain and our suffering.

A big theme of this episode has been a lot about self-awareness. In order to become more courageous, you need to have self-awareness. You need to recognize when you’re using the shortcuts. You’re trading your vulnerability for something because it feels easy or convenient. That visual of you meeting that woman in Philadelphia is such a great example of that. She probably wasn’t expecting to meet you either. She was there in her car with her kid or somebody’s kid. Maybe she would’ve dressed differently or looked differently. There are many things that she might’ve over-thought if she was planning on meeting you.

I went online dating once and it wasn’t until halfway through the date that the guy told me that he had a kid. I was like, “Why did he leave out such an important thing? Was he afraid that I wouldn’t want to go on a date with him because he had a kid?” Who knows what it was? My point being, if that was in fact her child, maybe she wouldn’t have told you that right away. She would have led with that and maybe you would have not wanted to date her because she had a child. It was authentic that she was with that child in the car hanging out doing whatever they were doing. She also had the opportunity to make eye contact with you. She had the opportunity to give you signals that she was interested, which I’m sure as a man, it made it easier for you to find the courage.

We don’t get that on online dating. You know how it is, most online dating is like, “How are you?” You don’t hear someone’s voice. You don’t hear their tone of voice. There are many factors. Some of them might give up or think, “This person must not like me.” All of these things we misinterpret through technology. We could continue going on about online dating. It’s that ongoing self-awareness, learning how to be braver and learning how to be more sensitive and figuring out what you need as an individual that makes such a huge difference in life.

Let’s all get to the nitty-gritty of who we are at the core. That’s an ever-evolving thing. That’s an infinite game that it never ends knowing ourselves, know thyself. That’s a lifelong journey. There is no destination to knowing oneself. It’s always a journey. We’re encouraging you to be on that journey, to trust that journey through the bumps, the storms and the monsters that may come because it’s all part of it. Whether we are aware of it or not, we’re in the same giant boat traversing these waters together.

You can send us a message on social media or email or maybe we’ll have another form of communication set up on our website. If you go to our website, you can find the best ways to communicate with us and give us some feedback or share your thoughts. One thing that I’m very passionate about and I think Jason is too, is supporting people and building a community. A lot of people get to feel they don’t matter, their thoughts no matter and their words don’t matter. We want you to know that you matter and we genuinely would love to hear from you. We will do our best to respond, but know that if you communicate with us, we will be at least listening and taking into our minds and our hearts what you’re saying. Please don’t hesitate in whatever form of communication works best for you. I know sometimes most people are reading blogs while they’re traveling or doing other things, multitasking in some way or another. When you find it convenient for you, please send us a message. We look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you for being with us. We will see you again for another episode.

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