Imagine you had an extra hour in the day, how would you spend that time? With the COVID-19 crisis, the world is in a completely different spot than it ever has. For people staying at home and working from home, they are finding enough time on their hands than they know what to do with. We would be having an entirely different experience without the pandemic threat looming, but as it is, it’s proving to be a stressful time for everybody. On today’s show, Jason Wrobel and Whitney Lauritsen discuss some things you could do to combat the anxiety and intense emotions around COVID-19. This episode is a special treat because Jason is also celebrating his birthday. They recall the road trip they took in 2019, and highlight the topics found in their eBook, From Chaos to Calm. For a free copy, just click right here: https://www.wellevatr.com/anxiety-ebook
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From Chaos To Calm
Working Through Anxiety During COVID-19
“Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday, Happy Birthday, dear, Jason. Happy Birthday to you.”
Thank you, Whit. I appreciate that. It’s sweet. You as the keeper of the schedule for the timing of these episodes. I’ve been focused on other stuff. I didn’t expect that sweet birthday greeting. Thank you. That was an even better way to start the episode than I thought.
I debated whether to sing that or the Stevie Wonder version, “Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday.”
You just did.
Jason, it’s your birthday. How did it go that one from your childhood?
“I’m Captain Zoom and I live on the moon and I’m here to something blump with the birthday tune.” It’s also a classic.
You have to tell the story of that song.
To show you what era we’re talking about here from whence I came. My mom got a custom vinyl record that you could send for, and they would mail you this voiceover artist. They had a song and a whole character named Captain Zoom, and he would sing this birthday song, but insert your name. He’d go, “Jason, it’s your birthday today.” Whatever your name was, they’d received the order. They put the name of your child into the song and do the recording and then ship you the record for $5. I don’t know what age I was. My mom would know this, but it was young. It was maybe 4 or 5 years old. It became a tradition in my youth to play this Captain Zoom record. Fast forward to my 40th birthday, I had a blowout celebration that Whitney brilliantly masterminded. The first thing that happened on the day of my birthday is Whitney and our dear friend, Nicole, who was also a guest here on the show, they busted into my apartment, my loft in Koreatown here in LA blasting that song. I was delirious. They woke me up and I hadn’t heard that song in decades. It was this weird dream state that state between sleep and dream. I don’t even know what you call that weird limbo state. I was like, “What is going on?” I realized it was that song. I got confused and then you and Nicole came up and you surprised me and you took me out for donuts. You had this amazing surprise party where it was probably what, 20, and 25 of my closest friends.
Sixty people RSVP to maybe 30 to 40 showed up.
You’ve masterminded two spectacular surprise parties in the time that we’ve known each other, Whitney. To give you massive props of how much coordination, organization, forethought, and creativity you have put into many of my birthday celebrations. For the big ones, you’ve outdone yourself. For whatever 55 is going to have for us, like, “Holy shit.” We have a pact between you, Ellie and I, you can check out the significance of number 55 in the numerology episode we did, but we have a pack that on Ellie’s 55th, my 55th and your 55th, we are going to go bananas on those birthdays.
You have to tell the story of the first big birthday surprise I threw you.
That was 2013 and Whitney kidnapped me that day, blindfolded me, and drove me around town. I had no idea where we were going. She took me to some of my favorite spots and also secret spots that I had never been to before. She drove me all around LA, took me out for a massage, took me to some of my favorite restaurants, and little places to get snacks and things like that throughout the day. She upped the ante by the big one, which was, “I’m going to blindfold you.” At the end of the day, I had no idea where we’re going and we’re in the car for what seemed like an eternity. It felt like the longest drive in history. When we arrive wherever we were, she kept the blindfold on and would not let me take the blindfold off for any of these adventures. She’s like, “You take the blindfold off.” I take the blindfold off and I’m in the middle of plant food and wine or Matthew Kenney’s place when it used to be in the Santa Monica mall.
You forgot the first time I took off your blindfold when I took you to the go-karts.
How could I forget about go-karts? Earlier in the day, we did a go-kart track day with some of our closest friends and that was fun. That was insane. I thought that was the coup de grâce. That was like, “Cool.” At the end of the day, what I was telling you is she even went the extra mile and did dinner with a lot of the same group of friends, but some other friends that weren’t there. The friends who couldn’t make it, you got them to record video birthday, greetings that we got to watch on your phone or your iPad at the time. It was magical and it was such an amazing dinner, the desserts, and the food. I think back on some of those memories, Whitney, and especially during quarantine and COVID and all of the things we’ve been talking about. Those intimate, personal in-person celebrations, I feel hold even more significance. They do such sweet memories.
We had to acknowledge you on your birthday. I’m curious how you’re going to spend your birthday this year in 2020 when the world is in a completely different spot than it ever has on previous birthdays.
I, first of all, want to acknowledge that there’s a first here on the show. For any long time readers and subscribers, thank you for your wonderful support. Thank you for the birthday wishes that are inevitably going to roll in. You all are ride or die. You go hard for us on social media and here on the show. I’m doing something here on my birthday, Whitney for the first time, which is I am doing this show in my underwear. I have to imagine that some readers probably trying to envision as the human imagination is vast and creative. Like, “I wonder what they were when they do these episodes.” For me, it’s usually shorts and a t-shirt, but I’m doing what I want because it’s my birthday. I am hanging out in my favorite boxer briefs. FYI, maybe TMI, but now you know what is the score. You asked, Whitney, what am I doing for number 43? On Sunday, which is generally a better day, we had a little socially distanced picnic over in the Elysian Park, which was sweet, blankets, and keeping people separated. That seemed to be the safest unifying thing to do. On my actual birthday, I’m going to take myself to my favorite spot for lunch in LA. I’m going to go to Kitchen Mouse. They have the Moros Cakes, Chilaquiles and Snickerdoodle Pancakes. I’m going to take myself to my favorite bookstore, which is a bookstore that’s open, not all the bookstores in LA are open. I am a huge fan, if anybody didn’t know this or you didn’t read our second episode, which was my life story and all about me. I’ve been obsessed with books ever since I was a little kid. I started reading at an abnormally young age and I used to take books to bed with me as if they were stuffed animals. I have a queue of at least fifteen books that I am making my way through slowly but surely with all this love, which is a book by JG Bennett, I’m reading a lot of books related to the Gurdjieff Fourth Way: Teachings, which is through my mentor, Michael that we mentioned on our episodes. He’s into a lot of transformational work that originated with George Gurdjieff in the 1920s, ’30s, ’40s, and ’50s. I’m reading a lot of stuff about personal and spiritual transformation. After I get through those, I’m going to crack into a book by Carolyn Elliott called Existential Kink, which is not a book about sex. Everyone thinks when I talk about that book, it’s like, “It’s a sex book?” It’s a book about looking at our shadow work and the things that we resist and we push away the things that make us uncomfortable, the things that we disapprove of about ourselves. By owning and celebrating those aspects of our personality, they help us get more of what we want in life instead of denying those aspects of our personality. I’m going to spend some time in nature. I’m going to spend time with dams. I’m going to spend time playing my new guitar. That’s another side story. I treated myself to a new guitar for my birthday. Also, my new lady, Laura that I’ve mentioned here on the show, especially in the relationship episodes there’s been one place in California with the whole time that I’ve lived here, which has been years. I’ve never been to Big Sur ever. I’ve been to NorCal. You and I have taken many great trips up to Northern California. We took a legendary trip up to the Ravens. What was the name of that resort we went to years ago up in NorCal?
You and I have taken some legendary trips to Northern California, but I have never, ever been to Big Sur and that part of the California Coast, Carmel, Salinas, Santa Cruz, I used to live in Santa Cruz. I thought, “This seems to be the year of the road trip.” I want to talk to you about some interesting ideas for road trips. I’m feeling the itch to do a road trip. Laura and I, we got together and said, “I’ve never been to Big Sur.” She’s never been to Big Sur and she’s a California native. We’re going to go up and we’re going to spend three days in Big Sur, in Carmel and Salinas.
A piece of good news for you, Jason, and maybe for the readers as well, is that I have been editing the video that we recorded on a road trip in 2019. No spoiler alerts. There are no major spoilers that happen. If you’re somebody that likes to watch videos like that, it’s going to be on the lengthy side. It’s like a vlog based on this road trip, Jason and I went on to Colorado. We went through Utah, Arizona, and Nevada. It was a joyful time. It’s been interesting editing that video because that was before COVID. There are all these little moments in the footage of things that we don’t have right now. It reminds me of the freedom that we experienced before a lot of this happened. That leads me to the main subject matter for this. For those of you reading, thank you for reading to intros that each of our episodes morphed into different subject matters at seems. A lot of the times we start off conversational all over the place, talking about random things that are going on in our lives or in our minds at the time. We have a very focused subject matter. This is based on an eBook that Jason and I have been working on for quite some time called From Chaos to Calm. Finding meaning and purpose in our life often consists of focusing on helping other people. Click To Tweet It was written to support anybody who’s been struggling with feelings of anxiety, stress, maybe depression, anything as a result of COVID-19. I imagine that when COVID-19 eventually passes, assuming that it does, hopefully, this isn’t a permanent way of living, but it certainly seems like it’s a lengthier process. I thought it was going to be when it hit the United States at the end of February, early, March 2020. There are two things at play. One is, how we’ve been feeling over the last few months? Initially, our idea with this book, which you can download for free on our website. I was sharing that when we initially came up with a concept for that book, that was probably in March or April, I imagine. Our aim was to get the book out fast, to support people that were feeling intense emotions around COVID. The book isn’t being released because we were dealing with our own versions of stress and anxiety. It’s challenging to help other people through things that you’re struggling with. We generally find ways to do that here on the show. We talk a lot about our struggles and through our other outlets, we certainly do, but I’m glad in a way that we waited for two reasons. One is that I’ve learned so much and I bet Jason has as well. There’s a lot more that we can share from an advice perspective. Two, I feel like there was so much information coming out, like, “How to handle your anxiety during COVID-19?” It was almost like there was a bombardment with that. I didn’t want to add to the noise.
I agree with that, Whit. We had this initial spark of inspiration and creative juice to put this new eBook, this guide out. To your point, Whitney, it was dealing with, for me, at least the difficulties with unemployment, some health stuff, and my health issues that flared up. It’s an interesting thing because two phrases come to mind and you and I have discussed this personally, maybe not on the show. The two phrases that come to mind are, “Doctor heals thyself,” and “We often teach what we need to learn most.” That resonates in a lot of ways. If I look at what you and I are doing here with Wellevatr and This Might Get Uncomfortable in terms of touching on mental health, emotional wellness, relationships, food, figuring out our prejudices and our own blind spots. Trying to become more self-aware, conscious, effective, loving human beings on the planet. It’s our aim here and in doing so, Whitney and I are certainly committed to that endeavor in our personal lives. To back up what you said, Whit, it did feel like there was a lot to unpack for us in terms of how we were handling the COVID situation with our personal health and social distancing. Our issues with anxiety, stress, loss of income, to be real our personal shit that was going down. It’s difficult sometimes to have I feel. We talked about this in the Introversion episode with Monica Schrock a little bit about the depletion that happens. For me, Whit, when I’m already struggling with my mental health, which has been well-documented here, or some physical issues that have come up. It’s tough for me to find the energy and the bandwidth to support others. It’s having the patients to complete something in its own time, which as we’re releasing From Chaos to Calm, it took a few more months than we thought. I feel certainly emotionally much better about this creation that we’re releasing now than had you and I rushed it.
That’s a big part of something that we discuss a lot is that hustle culture and how there’s so much pressure to do things right, to do things quickly. That in itself gives me anxiety. It causes resistance within me and Jason, I imagine that you have that as well as you don’t like to be forced into doing something.
The rebel in me the archetype of the rebellious spirit that hits the switch really quick.
For me, I’m a questioner. We’ve talked about the four tendencies on the show a bunch. Part of what it means to be a questioner is that you will always question the reason why doing something before you do it. If I don’t understand why there’s a rush, if I don’t feel like there’s a good explanation for why I should rush, then I probably won’t and I will resist doing it for the sake of doing it. What we’re going to do in this episode is share some of the techniques that we address. The book goes through twelve different techniques that you can use to release anxiety, stress, and any of those accompanying tough emotions that you’ve been experiencing. These are techniques that will help you with your physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. This episode was inspired by another episode we did, it was a two-part episode. That was about Jason’s book. What was it called? Blissful, Balanced, & Badass. That’s another free eBook that you can get. We have a lot of free eBooks. If you go to our website Wellevatr.com, there’s a whole free resources section. On there we have three eBooks. Plus, once you sign up for those, we send other freebies that you won’t find elsewhere. We’re trying to find lots of ways to support you for free. We also have paid resources, but sometimes it’s nice to start with something free before you invest in something financially. We should dive right in. The opening page of the book starts with one of your favorite quotes from one of your favorite people.
Our eBook begins with one of my absolute favorite quotes from one of my top five favorite authors of all time, Joseph Campbell. I’ve talked about him at length in terms of his philosophies around mythology, human existence and how myth and story is something that’s a little bit missing in our culture here, and why it’s so important in terms of archetypes. The eBook begins the preface here with the quote that says, “Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging.” Joseph Campbell’s sagacious timeless words have the power to inspire hope in the heart during this extremely chaotic and confusing time. We’re all certainly feeling stressed, anxious, and uncertain. We all have fears about how life is going to be once this crisis passes. There’s been a barrage of scary news, and it’s a lot for us to take mentally and emotionally. One thing’s for sure, life is not going back to normal. We will be forever changed by this transformative situation and to prepare for brighter days it’s important to take care of ourselves at the moment to nourish and heal ourselves with presence, compassion, and intention. The following twelve techniques can help us get through this feeling of free fall and allow us to more gracefully ride this spiritual roller coaster we’re all on.
Our aim with this guide is to help you work through any of this worry and stress before it’s affecting your state of being. We wrote that in the book, but Jason, now that I’m rereading that I’m like, “I don’t think we’re necessarily helping people before it has a chance to affect them.” For a lot of us, it already has affected us. This is part of the reason I wanted to go through this book as we’re putting the final touches on it because I want to make sure that this all makes sense. Sometimes when you read it out loud, you’re like, “This doesn’t quite make sense.” Would you agree?
Yes. It’s when you read a book that you’ve written as Whitney and I both have published books that are out there. I remember reading the proof of the first draft of my book and thinking, “This is a little stilted. It needs to be more conversational and relevant.” Reading things out loud has a tremendous benefit.
I also feel like that shows the process and our aim is to not share every word of this book with you as a reader because we hope that you’ll go read it. We also want to make it a little bit of an audio companion guide to it because some people prefer to listen to things. If you’ve been reading to our blogs and even if this is the only episode that you’ve ever read, you’re likely here because you enjoy taking things in that auditory experience. We’ll take you through the book. We’re not going to share every single detail. I’m somebody that likes coupling audio, visual, and the written word. We don’t have a video component to this, but maybe we will in the future if it’s asked of us, but we wanted to give you both of those experiences. That’s a different way to take in this information. Hopefully, through this episode, you will get some more techniques that can help nourish you and help you care for yourself, enhance your self-care practices and learn more about the things that have been working for us during this time. Speaking of which, we should start with our personal experiences with chaos. I think that we may clear in every episode of our show but also as a reminder, the two of us don’t have everything all figured out. We struggle with anxiety. Jason talks a lot about his struggles with depression. We have mental health challenges. We struggle emotionally. One of the things I spend a lot of time on is different coping techniques, I suppose, or healing techniques, modalities. Part of that is because when I feel stressed, one of the things I start with is gathering resources. I’m a big problem solver. I get frustrated when I feel like something is in my way and I can’t control it. Throughout my life, people have criticized me off and on for being a controlling person. When I reflect on that, I believe that’s part of the way that I cope. I like to feel I’m in control. It’s my coping mechanism. If I feel like if I can predict things and control them, I can put out the fires and I can find that balance. It’s comforting for me.
Does it make you feel safe, Whit?
Sure, absolutely. It is a big feeling of security for me. I bet you, a lot of people can relate to this because a big keyword during COVID-19 has been uncertainty. What’s interesting we talk about this in the book we’ll get more into it but it’s like, “If I can plan something on a personal level, then maybe that helps me feel more certain.” If things around me externally don’t feel certain than maybe internally I can create some certainty there. It’s like a form of confidence that I’m looking for. It’s a fascinating thing when you reflect on your reactions. I’ve struggled a lot with low self-esteem and not feeling good enough. That will often turn into me being, or acting a bit of a perfectionist, even though I don’t identify with that word. I used to use that word in a positive way. I would say like, “I’m a perfectionist. I want to get things right all the time.” I read a book about perfectionist and that made me feel like, “I don’t want to identify with that at all, because I don’t think that’s serving me.” For me, I do a lot of internal reflection. Even though that might seem like I’m controlling, like, “If I can reflect on this and understand it, then I can fix it.” That’s still at play. I don’t know if I’ll ever get over that side of myself. One thing that has helped me through the process of maternal reflection is trying to be accepting. This is something that comes up in the book but to share my personal experience, I feel like my big work at this stage of my life. It may be an ongoing piece of work is not to judge myself and to simply accept the way that I look, I feel, and not judge myself about that too much watch it pass by. The things that support me through that are practices journaling, verbal affirmations, yoga, and/or taking long walks where I can reflect and be on my own deep breathing, having a nourishing diet. That helps me be gentle with myself and all of those things combined help me during times where I feel low in energy, where I’m not focusing, or maybe I’m in a bad mood. Like we were saying before, try not to force myself out of it quickly instead of observing it and letting it pass whenever it seems to pass. Those are the things that have helped me out a lot. We’re going to talk about a lot of different techniques. That’s a bit of a summary of where I’ve been at my experience with this chaotic time.
The thing that comes up for me, Whitney, before I share my thoughts and some of the things I’ve been working on, struggling with, and moving through. When we talk about self-care and a lot of the journaling, yoga, deep breathing, and self-reflection techniques that you use. Part of the resistance possibly for some people, I’m curious if this has come up for you when you referenced the hustle culture, working hard and perfectionism. A lot of these old paradigm things that are rooted, in my opinion, in an individualistic, toxic capitalistic culture that forces us and encourages us to burn ourselves out and strive to succeed at all costs. With the economic downturn and maybe projects being put on pause or canceled. I don’t know how much you want to share about, not only our but your personal business dealings. Has it been difficult for you to not just put aside the time, but prioritize this grounding self-care, anti-anxiety practices when maybe there’s a part of you that’s like, “No, you need to hustle because the money and the things, and we got to make sure that when things opened back up, we’ve got momentum?” I’m curious how that dance has been for you mentally?
Jason, our next episode, you don’t know this yet, but I have planned out for our topic is about the hustle culture. I finished reading a phenomenal article about this and specifically how it’s affecting Millennials. Even though Jason’s not technically a Millennial, I’m a Millennial. You identify a lot as a Millennial, even though your age-wise are not one, Jason.
I’m Gen X technically.
For you, Jason and for the readers stay tuned because I was blown away by what I was reading and researching about the hustle culture. I’m going to save part of my answer for that episode. I encourage you the reader to subscribe so you don’t miss out on that episode and future episodes. If you like what you’re reading, then we have a lot coming for you. A lot that we’ve already done, this is our 91st episode. There’s a lot of content for you and you can search on our website easily by keywords. If you go to Podcast.Wellevatr.com, you’ll find a lot there. A quick summary to answer your question, Jason, before you get into your experience with chaos is that I’ll say, I have found a great balance. Part of that is because I was asked to do to speak on creating a good routine for wellbeing. I’ve spent the last few weeks to a month diving into what is best for our mental and emotional health when it comes to a regular routine. Through that research, I was able to shape a routine for myself. The project I’m referencing, I believe will be the public most positive and permanent. Going back to the part of my coping is by doing research and reflection. That’s usually where I find what works best for me. Even though I can get into a little bit too much of that planning, controlling mode, and trying to like make everything perfect, I have found that it does serve me in some ways. It does have some benefits, as long as I don’t view it too rigidly. That’s part of the hustle culture is that perpetuates this idea of trying to get it perfect and trying to get it right. If I allow myself to think about it that way at first, but then shift into a more relaxed and balanced perspective of things, then I can do my own version of hustling and perfectionism. It’s a softer version of perfectionism. To specifically answer your question, Jason, I have made a more rigid schedule for myself, but I build in the wellbeing into that day. I’m speaking specifically about this stage of my life in Summer 2020, because this is what’s working for me. That doesn’t mean it will always work for me. I have found major benefits to planning out my day before I go to bed. I plan out everything that’s important to me. I set my priorities when it comes to working and the business. Those go on my calendar and my to-do list. I also add in when I’m going to eat lunch and when I’m going to have dinner. I have experimented a lot and found that I want at least an hour for each of those meals because that includes the time it takes to either make, cook, and prepare a meal, or go out to get something. If I’m going to pick something up from a restaurant, for example, and get takeout. The time it takes to consume that food plus to relax from it. I dedicate at least two and a half hours of my day to my meals. That’s important to me. I’d build in the mornings, afternoons, and evenings, my work time. Within that, I also build in 30 minutes to one hour of movement, whether that’s yoga or taking a long walk or doing some fitness routine, like a class. I build in time to read. I give myself at least 30 minutes to read a book and 30 minutes to an hour to read online articles. Those are separate and those both go on my schedule every single day. I build in little breaks in between things. Throughout my day, I have an hour for this one where work projects and an hour for another work project. I put gaps in between each of them so I can get up, stretch and I can lay down in the bed for a second, sit on the couch, use the bathroom, go make some coffee or tea, or zone out, maybe watch TikTok for a little bit. Even though it feels rigid and scheduled, it helps me a lot because I can follow the rhythm of my day. I’ve built in that self-care time.
It’s impressive, Whitney. I’ve never heard you break it down to such a degree. It’s interesting because I feel like I’ve somewhat no shock. If we talk about the tendencies my rebellious nature has been with many structures or familiar routines being thrown to the wayside. I feel like I’ve both resisted the chaos and then I’ve also surrendered to it. It’s been an interesting dance of resistance and surrender. In some ways, for me, the idea of routine and structure is good because without it, I tend to scatter my focus creatively and nothing seems to get done. Something I’ve noticed over the course of my life is that if I don’t implement some fundamental structure, it doesn’t have to be extremely rigid because I will rebel against too much rigidity. Enough to get me to stay consistent with the things that I know I want to do. Finish a song, a book, writes our newsletter. There is some structure that is necessary if one wants to complete creative tasks or even menial tasks. By virtue of having animals to take care of, a dog to walk, having a meditation practice, and having rituals in all of this chaos of losing for me, there were a lot of projects at the beginning of COVID that either got paused indefinitely or completely canceled. Learning how to love 100% of ourselves is really tough work. Click To Tweet I’m on unemployment for the first time in my life, which has been an interesting dance with my ego. The idea of filing for unemployment, which I did early on, I did it in the middle of March when California was first put on quarantine lockdown. There was this battle internally of me of, “You fucked up, you failed. You should have saved more money. You should have ‘planned for this’ you knew there was going to be a disaster at some point.” There was a lot of self-immolation and a lot of negative self-talk that I was indulging in. I wasn’t being kind to myself. I said, “You have worked hard and you have hustled your ass off as an artist, entrepreneur, and being in business for yourself for so long.” Take a little time to allow the programs that are in place to help you. Long story short, I ended up applying three different times for unemployment and after three and a half months of waiting, I finally got approved. That’s been a blessing and a godsend in many ways. Having some help from family financially, having support from friends getting through this. I’ve been leaning on people a lot more than I usually do. That’s also been an ego battle. That individualistic hustle mentality, “You got to be self-made you got to do it on your own.” It is total bullshit. No one is self-made everyone has support, love, and a leg up from someone somewhere. The whole idea of being self-made is an illusion. It’s more programming to drive us into wrecking ourselves, “They’re self-made, you need to be too.” I noticed that I was buying into some of that bullshit. I had to deal with looking at that over the course of this thing. For me, Whit, having a flexible routine in terms of, “I’m going to work out, but maybe I’m not going to work out as much. Maybe I’ll start doing yoga again. I went to my first yoga class in three months and I’m walking every day.” In a way, I’m not pushing myself as hard as I used to. That feels unusual because in some ways, Whit, I have been operating in a mode of push, drive, outwork, everyone, and outhustle everyone. This old school, Detroit blue-collar mentality I grew up with, which in some ways has served my success in my career, but it’s caused a lot of mental and physical health issues in my life. I’ve got to be honest with myself. I don’t want to return to that old way of forcing myself, pushing myself, being in some ways, cruel to myself of what I perceive I don’t work hard, hustle, and apply myself enough. In some ways, I’ve had that structure, but I’ve also taken my foot off the gas a little bit during this time, Whitney. I’ve had to face that inner voice and critic that tells me I’m not doing enough and telling him to, “Thank you for the input but you’re going to ride in the third row in the back seat on this road trip. I’m not going to let you drive and I’m not going to let you control the radio anymore. Thanks for your input, but shut up.”
Thank you for being transparent about that. That’s important to share because one of the things that a lot of people struggle with is feeling alone and that leads to more feelings of isolation. We have a lot of versions of isolation socially because of physical distancing. That takes a big toll on us. This is something that we talk about in some of our techniques. There’s a section specifically about socializing during this time and how it’s important for our mental health to socialize. It’s also important for us on a social level. Socializing often is associated with having fun. It’s getting together with people and having a good time, but of course, a big part of how we socialize, especially with our friendships are more intimate relationships, friendships, family, romantic partners, etc. We also spend a lot of that time supporting each other emotionally, listening to each other’s struggles, and understanding that we’re not alone. One thing that I find fascinating is that I often am in a pattern of assuming that I’m dealing with something that other people aren’t dealing with. Do you feel that way too, Jason?
I do. It’s an interesting egoic trap. Because it’s almost this idea that we’re the only ones who have ever experienced heartbreak, financial loss, insecurity, and death of a loved one. There are a million challenges and aspects of suffering of the human condition and human experience, but it is weird when we’re in it and we’re deep in it. The ego plays a trick on us like, “This is your suffering and it’s yours to bear and no one will understand.” It’s total bullshit because no matter our religion, skin color, race, eating style, lifestyle, and belief systems, there is far more, I believe that unites us in the human experience than divides us.
That is important to be reminded of. I hope that reading, share about our experiences helps you the reader. We also invite you to share your experiences, whether you want to do that privately with us or publicly. Privately, you can reach us in a few different ways. One is through email, our emails, [email protected]. We are always there to read your messages and to write back as soon as possible with whatever you need. You can also contact us through direct messages. It seems to be the method of preference for a lot of people. If you go to @Wellevatr we often receive direct messages on Instagram, sometimes on Facebook. We are also on Twitter, which has direct messaging and Pinterest, which I don’t think does, but a lot of the platforms is my point that you can even TikTok you can direct message us there. Those are ways that you can let us know what you’re going through privately. By sharing what you’re going through, not only gives us insight into who you are and where you’re at in life, but it helps other people. We hope that through this eBook, From Chaos to Calm, each of you is reflecting on and learning on things. If there’s something that we left out of the book that you want to add to it, we love to hear that from you. You never know who you’re going to affect with your words and your experience.
It’s an interesting time overall, Whitney, for individuals that are willing to look at themselves. When I say look at themselves and I talk about doing the work, whatever we referenced that in terms of our mindfulness practices, spiritual practices, or some of the things I’ve referenced with my work with my mentor, Michael. This period of time, including this moment, not the first say three months of the pandemic or quarantine, whatever you want to call it. There are always moments of self-reflection and always opportunities to look at ourselves. There’s been something magical and unique about the economy slowing way down. About the environment, regenerating itself about people losing their jobs, going on unemployment. I’m not saying that my or our struggles have been unique or different than anyone else’s, but it’s been an interesting time to go deep and reflect on some of the deeper things that are running us.
That’s one of the things that we touch upon in the book. Going back to some of our techniques, the first one that we share is encouraging you not to run from the pain. There is this natural or common tendency for us to try to escape things that feel painful. Especially at this time, we don’t know how long it’s going to last. What are interesting about COVID-19 is all the different evolutions of it. I remember I first started hearing about it. I was aware of it and I felt like I was aware and bringing it up more with people. It wasn’t on the news very much. You were hearing what was going on in China, but it felt like it was this distant thing. People didn’t seem that concerned about it. I might’ve started to hear about it earlier than that on TikTok, which is one of my favorite sources of information for better or worse. A little side note, I spent a lot of time on TikTok early on in COVID. I found myself in the first few months of it, especially once things started to shut down in terms of the quarantine when that began, which was in mid-March to 2020 for us in Los Angeles at least. I remember spending so much time on TikTok because A, I was using that as a form of escape and B, I was also using it as a source of news in a way that can feel more connected to other people. I was doing a lot of different things for escapism. I was playing the video game I’ve talked about it a few episodes called Animal Crossing that came out at the end of March 2020 for a Nintendo Switch. A lot of people were talking about it because it was a wonderful, peaceful game that you could use to escape. Going back to my point about how long this is going to last, back then thinking, “This is temporary. I’m going to allow myself to escape this temporary pain.” Weeks and months went by and suddenly it no longer felt temporary. I feel even more at a loss. In a nice way, I feel like I’ve had to surrender a lot to that unknown. COVID is teaching a lot of us to be present and not try to predict or control because we don’t know what’s going to happen next. That can feel scary and painful. That uncertainty, as we talked about can make us feel like we can’t plan for anything. A lot of our joy comes from planning. Some research that I’ve come across in terms of tips has encouraged us to continue to plan because we can always adjust. We can always course correct, but the act of planning things brings us a lot of joy. Even though it might not happen, we should still plan as if it’s going to happen, but be prepared to have to shift things a little bit. That’s good advice for life in general because the other thing that we point out in this eBook is that life is always uncertain. It’s just that we’re a lot more aware of it. The big benefit in that is that we can practice sitting in that uncertainty. This first part of the book is about sitting in it instead of running away from it and trying to control it.
The microcosm in the macrocosm is something that is such a foundational, spiritual, a mindfulness teaching. In the Bible, it says, “As above so below.” The micro is the macro and vice versa. You talk about sitting with the pain, Whitney, and not running from it and being with it. I’ve been dealing with an extremely painful flare-up of gout. It’s funny as I’ve told people that like, “How do you have gout? You’re in your 40s and you’re vegan?” I don’t necessarily want to get into the ins and outs of that because it’s a tangent that takes us fully away from this part of the pain we’re focusing on. Over the years, I’ve had two flare-ups of gout. It’s not a chronic thing, but it’s one of the most painful things I’ve experienced. I have a decently high pain tolerance and one of the flare-ups was when Whitney and I were on our annual East Coast trip to Natural Products Expo East, which we referenced in a previous episode, got canceled. It was painful while we were on this trip that Whitney had to push me around in a wheelchair at the trade show. That was so humbling for me. I had to be pushed around in New York. We went to a museum in New York City when we were visiting Whitney’s sister. It’s the first time in my life that in public not in a hospital for any reason had to be pushed around in a wheelchair. It was humbling, but it was also an opportunity for me to have compassion for people that is their daily reality of walking with crutches, a walker, wheelchair, or they don’t have use of their limbs. It’s an extremely enlightening and eye-opening experience to go through that. Another flare-up happened and it’s been sometimes to the point where it’s painful, I can’t sleep. It’s been a lesson because I’ve been wanting it to end. I’ve liked, “God, when is this flare of going to be done? When is my foot going to get back to normal? When am I going to not feel so much fucking pain?” The micro in the macro, I’ve had the same thoughts about COVID, “When am I going to start making money? When can I get off unemployment? When are the projects going to come? When are we going to get to go on a speaking tour? When do we get to go to concerts? When do we get to see our friends? When did we get to visit our families?” It’s the same thing.
Once I realized that correlation, that me wanting to avoid an end of the physical pain I’m in, it doesn’t mean I haven’t been taking precautions, medication and herbal remedies I have been, but not fully embracing the lesson in it, which is you’re in pain. That is what’s happening in this moment. You don’t know how long you’re going to be in pain. You don’t know when your foot is going to go back to normal, which is the same thing as in, you don’t know when you’re going to get another gig, when society is going to reopen, and when you’re going to get to see your family again. It’s interesting how the lessons, Whitney, no matter how the lesson is materializing, they seem to mirror themselves. That’s my experience. There are mirrors for each other.
One of the joys that I find in life is learning lessons. That’s part of how I process and cope as looking for the glass half full mentality. Another technique that we talk about in the book is that if we can shift away from a negative outlook to a positive outlook, it can be helpful in us coping with it. This isn’t meant to come across as reckless optimism or bright siding. I read about bright siding in an article, and I thought it was interesting because there is this tendency that we have, or I should say maybe the wellness community has or maybe even our culture has, which is, “Don’t worry about it. Become a glass half full person, look on the bright side.” That’s not always helpful during tough times because it isn’t necessarily easy to switch. Our brains are working basically through a lot of different processing and mental habits. One thing that I’ve learned and this comes back to what I was saying about not rushing through things or not judging myself for where I’m at. It’s not trying to rush myself into positivity. I want to take ownership of the fact that I’ve been a bright sider in terms of my recommendations for friends. When I see somebody struggle, I have a tendency, a desire to encourage them to look on the bright side. I have to have more compassion for the fact that it isn’t that easy. The reason that we put a section about this in the book is that we want you to consider this. We would love you to aim for it, to work towards it. We also don’t want to discredit the fact that you’re going through a tough time. If you can start to shift into it and take small steps towards it and take that time to reflect on your pain, as we’re talking about and see if there’s anything to learn from it. If you don’t feel the desire to learn something from it, if you feel more comforted sitting in the negative, then maybe that’s what’s best for you at that time. Sometimes it does feel good to dwell in negativity. If you’re after what makes you feel good, then maybe dwelling in your negativity is the best thing for you at that moment. Long-term though, because we’re passionate about setting up these long-term habits, the long-term will benefit from you switching and shifting into that positivity.
It’s honoring where you’re at the moment and being authentic about where you’re at. We’re being real. Having danced with clinical depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation, all the permutations of mental illness that I’ve been experiencing. There’s a fine line between trying to force it and doing the work to shift yourself out of it. There is a nuance thing I found for me. When I’m in a negative headspace and, Whitney, you’ve seen me spiral into some dark places. There are things I do as simple as the first words out of my mouth when I wake up in the morning is, giving thanks for the day, “Thank you for another day, thank you for another day of life, all the blessings, joys, and gifts that you give to me.” Thanking God, universe, life, whatever you believe in. Simple gratitude prayer in the morning. Even if I’m not feeling it, there’s something about the routine of reinforcing the gratitude or reinforcing the gifts. Even if the gifts come in forms that are painful, or allow me to look at my suffering, my blind spots or my prejudices or whatever it is. The deeply uncomfortable, painful things that for our growth and evolution as beings we need to look at. It doesn’t mean those things are “bad.” It doesn’t mean that if we’re suffering that’s a bad thing or that we’re in pain, it’s a bad thing, or that we are experiencing confusion, trauma, that those are “bad things.” Here’s what I mean by that. I don’t mean to be dismissive of anyone’s life experience. That is not my intention when I say that. I do think that in the midst of those seemingly “bad or awful things,” there are gifts, treasures, and there is an awareness that we can all glean from that. If we don’t, that’s when sometimes pain, trauma, sorrow, and suffering can persist if we don’t see the lessons, the awareness, and the gifts that are deeply embedded. It’s digging, and then finding that one little diamond, that little piece of gold or that little treasure in the midst of so much pain, suffering and sweat. That’s how I’m looking at the negativity, pain, or suffering I experienced, Whit, is I know that sometimes below the surface, actually all the time, sometimes it’s buried a lot deeper than other times. There’s something for my growth, to open my heart and something to teach me about life in the midst of it.
We’ve referenced this in another episode. We enjoy the lessons that Dr. Viktor Frankl shared, who is a Holocaust survivor and known for this wonderful book called Man’s Search for Meaning. He found that the prisoners in these camps that he was in the people that tended to deal with it the best were the people that were able to find meaning in their lives and those that we’re taking care of one another. He developed a whole form of psychotherapy to help people overcome depression not simply but centered around finding meaning and purpose in life. That often consisted of focusing on helping other people. We do have a section in the book about finding that deeper meaning. Part of that is releasing that illusion of control as we’ve been talking about and reflecting on what this means for you? What is it that you’re learning from this situation? Can you do something good for somebody else? That is a huge thing. Going back to socializing. Sometimes with socializing, we’re focused on what we can get out of it, but if we shift to that focus on how we can help somebody else, that can change our relationships with people. Oftentimes I reflect on my desire to be by myself and be introverted, but I also try to take note of what my friends need. Maybe it’s more important for me to get together with them for their sake than it is for mine, or maybe they need me to listen. That’s why they want to talk on the phone. Maybe they need to feel loved talking to my family members, checking in with them. Sometimes it’s much more about them than it is for me.
It’s an interesting process, isn’t it? The human experience is such a fascinating, diverse, challenging, beautiful experience. To go back to what you said, Whitney, about bright siding. I’ve heard it put another way, which is toxic positivity and the dark side of the high vibe culture, the high vibes only crowd. We’re seeing that to resist or run away from a challenge, discomfort, things that are uncomfortable, uncomfortable conversations, or facing and embracing some of the “darkness or the shadow work.” There’s a great book since we love recommending books called, The Shadow Effect and it was a compilation. It was Deepak Chopra, Marianne Williamson, and four other writers. It was this idea that looking at our shadows or looking at the unresolved unloved, unaccepted, the parts of ourselves, that we find unacceptable. Diving into that and finding the beauty and the gifts in those parts of ourselves, instead of smothering it with so much saccharine positivity that we don’t acknowledge our darkness and our judgments. We don’t acknowledge how much maybe we hate ourselves or whatever that permutation is. Some of the most valuable work to me is learning how to love 100% of ourselves that is tough work.
One of the other techniques that we have in the book From Chaos to Calm is about challenging your rational beliefs. Part of this is how we can fall into self-sabotaging statements where we’re speaking to ourselves in ways that are negative for our self-esteem and that keeps us in that mode of negativity. If you’re struggling with that or saying things to yourself like, “What’s the point? Why should I even do this? Nobody even cares. It doesn’t even matter.” That can be tough on your psyche. There was a quote that I included on this page from this wonderful author and creator named Mari Andrew, who said, “This has been a time when we are all permitted to be a bit rawer and a lot more human.” That is part of the glass half full viewpoint for me, which is that, “That’s a huge benefit.” How wonderful that we’re given permission to make mistakes, to do things “wrong,” to not always be perfect all the time, to not always look our best or feel our best. It is as if this time in humanity is bringing about much more compassion and understanding within one another because many of us are struggling. It feels like a shared experience. If we can do more reflection on what thoughts and beliefs we’ve been having about ourselves and the world, we may find that those don’t serve us. We may find that we’ve been judgmental towards ourselves and other people. If we can release that, it takes away some of the pressure and it can reduce the stress and anxiety that we’re feeling too.
We’ve referenced our friend, Kyle Cease a few times here on the show and hope to have him as a guest in the near future. One of the things that I love about Kyle’s work is he has this technique where you say something that you find you’re in resistance to, you’re avoiding, or maybe an aspect of yourself that you haven’t fully loved yet. I find myself avoiding or distracting myself from the things that matter most in my life and I love that. The “And I love that,” is something that, going back to the shadow work and full acceptance of self that he teaches in his meditation and mindfulness work of saying a thing that you might feel icky when it comes out of your mouth, like, “I do avoid a lot of the things that matter most.” Songwriting or making my music and I love that. Not only just saying it, but sitting with it and going, “Maybe I do love that. Maybe there is a part of me that enjoys and does get off on the fact that I’m avoiding that thing and why is that?” It’s not for me, at least interpreting his work, creating a mechanism for practicing the acceptance of ourselves, but adore to some deeper inquiry of like, “If I do love that because I’m doing it over and over again, why I love it?” It’s a fascinating technique. I wanted to give a shoutout to Kyle for that one.
It also comes back to doing what you can. That’s a big thing. We touched upon this when we said taking away that pressure to do everything all at once and to meet the deadlines. One thing that a lot of people have been verbalizing about is feeling like their motivation has been greatly affected and reduced in their energy is different. With things shifting so much, some people may have felt that this entire time. Some people like myself felt that at one point and now don’t, but it might come back. Looking at the lessons that I’m learning and the opportunities that I’ve had to reflect on myself and other people during this time, I almost feel like I’m building up some more internal resilience, awareness. Recognizing that the things that I’m working on they may be temporary, but they also could come back. They’re temporary but because something ends don’t mean that it won’t come back again for better or for worse. One of those techniques that work well is trying not to be hard on myself if I don’t get everything done quickly. Some days I feel accomplished and I’m going through that routine, I talked about and that whole checklist and some days I don’t want to do any of it or some days I only do half of it. Now, is one of those days? On the day I planned out a lot of work for myself all weekend. It's important to find the joy and look at the bright side of things when you can. Click To Tweet I wouldn’t say it’s part of the job of an entrepreneur to work every day of the week, but it’s a typical experience. Unlike when you are employed by somebody else and you have set hours the typical 9:00 to 5:00, when you run your own business, when you’re a solopreneur, especially you tend to work frequently. What I want to practice and this came up in some articles I was reading is it’s important for us to have weekend routines that are separate from our weekday routines. I struggle with that a lot because I get into that hustle culture. We’re going to do a whole episode on that and we’ve talked about that a number of times. We have some more things to dive into on that subject matter in an upcoming episode. It’s more that I’m learning to give myself permission to go at whatever pace I need to go on in the given moment. Because of the hustle culture, a lot of us are afraid to do that. We feel like we have to constantly perform at our best every single day all the time and if we don’t that something’s wrong with us, we’re not doing it right, we’re slacking or we’re lazy. We need to tune into ourselves and be accepting of whatever we’re able to do at that moment and what we want to do. What can bring us this joy as we’ve talked about it’s important to find the joy. It’s important to look at the bright side of things when you can, but if you can’t look at the bright side in that moment, for whatever reason, that’s okay. You’re doing the best that you can and you’re doing what you can with the place that you’re in, the knowledge that you have, and the resources that you have access to as well. One important thing that I want to focus on more in my work with wellbeing is recognizing that not everybody has access to the same things. That could be education. Not everybody has access to the type of education that I had or other people around me have. Not everybody has a great family life and has close friends. A lot of people feel lonely and isolated, even when it’s not during a pandemic. Not everybody has access to great food. We have a whole section. There’s an in-depth section of the eBook that we’ve been talking about on food. We talk about how helpful it is to eat processed, functional, and nutritious food. Jason and I do our best to talk about things that are accessible to as many people as possible, no matter where you live and how much money you have. The wellness industry in general tends to have this more elitist viewpoint, like, “Eat these foods. These are superfoods.” Jason came up against this criticism when he wrote his book Eaternity because he talked a lot about superfoods that can be expensive or inaccessible. Some people feel left out by that and it brought that awareness. We need to acknowledge people for where they’re at and meet them where they’re at and give them permission to do the best that they can give where they’re at.
For me, it’s been an ongoing challenge. We talked about making this accessible and it’s a tough thing sometimes because I feel like a challenge that I have sometimes is going so deep into the rabbit hole of all the things we’re talking about, self-awareness, mindfulness, presence, health, wellbeing. All the permutations of, “What it is that we like to do not just personally but professionally?” Sometimes I forget and it’s difficult for me to get back into the beginner’s mindset or rather put myself in a state of mindfulness around someone who might be at the beginning of their journey of eating healthier or starting to meditate five minutes a day. It’s challenging but it’s also important because not everyone is at the same level of accessibility or privilege, but also how long they’ve been practicing or experimenting with different aspects of their wellbeing. This is something that I have perhaps been unaware of in the past. You mentioned Eaternity in my use of superfoods and promoting superfoods for many years and I did it because I was passionate about it. I also think about where I grew up in Detroit and a lot of the people in my neighborhood growing up, family or friends that are there that either don’t have the desire to leverage their financial resources toward super expensive, high-quality mushrooms, which are effective, but they are pricing in many instances. I’m not picking on Pilates, but you can see Pilates for $30, $35 a class. There’s a deeper desire I have in the work that we’re doing with Wellevatr and beyond to get back to that simple minimalist beginner’s place and try and put my mind into my heart there. I do want this work to be more accessible to people. I’m glad you talked about that. I feel like I’m shifting away from the Uber expensive elitist mentality of the wellness field. I get triggered by it. When I see the posts and I see like, “This new mud mask is $200 a jar.” I’m like, “There’s a different way.” I’m not judging it but if our desire is to make wholeness and health and wellbeing accessible to as many people as possible, we have to meet people where they’re at. I’m echoing back your sentiment.
This is why we write an eBook together as there’s so much to add. We’re grateful for the opportunity to talk about it on the show. Saying things out loud, having discussions, and reflecting on things helps. That’s something we didn’t put in the book per se, but maybe we’ll add-in. This falls into the socializing category. Part of the way that Jason and I work is based on our friendship and we can support each other. We can learn from one another. We can talk things out and figure things out together. That’s a huge benefit. For you, the reader that to me is one of the key points in that book is to socialize in whatever way is accessible to you and feels good to you. If you don’t find it’s an accessible thing, please reach out to us. Please let us know because we’d love to support you if you don’t have anyone else in your life to support you. There’s so much in this book that we haven’t gotten into. We’ll encourage you to go to the book and read it for yourself. Maybe we’ll do another episode about it because there were some other points like movement. We talked a little bit about movement. There’s a section about breathing. The importance of taking deep breaths. You can practice something called breathwork if you’d like. The simple act of breathing is one of the most powerful techniques that you have at your fingertips, every single moment. Reminding yourself of that during tough times is helpful. The book also goes into sleep and the importance of rest. We want to remind you to make sure that you do that too. You can download this book for free it’s in the resource section at Wellevatr.com. You’ll see the cover From Chaos to Calm there. If you ever had feedback on our website and the flow of it, please let us know. We’ve been working on optimizing that more. Speaking of which one thing I would love from you is for you to fill out a survey that we put out for our readers. We created a survey so that we can learn more about you. We want to know who you are, and it takes a few minutes to complete. It’s a few basic questions about who you are? How you found the show? What platforms do you listen to? That gives us more insight. We can optimize this experience for you. The more that we know about you, the more that we can make this appealing for you and help you out as much as we can because that’s our aim. We’d love for you to fill that out. The direct link to the survey is Podcast.Wellevatr.com/survey. As we wrap up, we’re going to do something that we’ve been doing for the past few episodes, which is reading some frequently asked queries. Jason loves these. There’s always something interesting. I’ve been cataloging them. This is one of my ways of optimizing our website and the reader experience is diving into Google Analytics and seeing what brings people to our websites and our show. I often come across some interesting things. There is more to share than I have time to do in this episode. We’ll read a few of them, but this is something that you can look forward to in our upcoming episodes, and in some of the previous episodes, we started doing this a few episodes ago. At the end of everyone, we reward you with something fun this frequently asked queries section. I’m going to open up my list here and see what comes to mind if there’s anything relevant to this conversation.
If there’s anything about how old is Jason Wrobel or any birthday related stuff I’m going to freak out. That’s going to be metta.
This one’s interesting. I’m going to use this as a rapid-fire answer from you, Jason, and I’ll answer it myself. One of the queries was, “Imagine you had an extra hour in the day. How would you spend that time?”
I would spend it doing pampering. Pampering is the first thing that came up to me. I’m still not great admittedly at self-care. There was an interesting blog post tangentially from a Leo Babauta who does Zen Habits.
I want him on our show badly.
I was reading through it and I’m like, “I don’t do this.” When I rest and I’m not talking about sleep per se, like, “I don’t rest.” The first thing that came to my mind, I would indulge in deeper rest and pampering of myself because I don’t do that.
I’ve been wanting an extra hour, especially because I’ve been planning my days out specifically. Every day I have that feeling of not having enough time, but as soon as I have that thought, “I don’t have enough time.” I try to shift out of it as quickly as possible because I don’t feel like it serves me. It’s not a helpful belief system. If I had an extra hour, what would I do? I might read and I might sleep. I feel like I’ve been pretty good with both of those getting consistently eight hours of sleep each night. Maybe I would have that as an open hour to do whatever I wanted. Take it day by day every once in a while I was thrown extra hours. You know what it is, Jason? I love that when you have a meeting or something and it gets canceled the last minute, that’s an instant hour that you get back. I always feel a lot of joy when things get canceled, simply because I feel like I’m getting extra time that I wasn’t expecting.
Is it the same feeling, Whitney, as you and I both grew up on the East Coast and the Midwest when we’d get a snow day at school, but you didn’t realize it until right before you were going to leave for school and you’re like, “Snow day?”
That’s a good example of how that feels for sure. Let me see another one. This one I thought was interesting. I’m curious what you think that this person was trying to find by searching for this, Jason, they typed, “Soylent Green, Impossible Burger.”
I would have to guess because we referenced impossible in our episode about the Beyond Meat IPO and the growth of explosive financial wealth in the plant-based space.
Let me clarify. I’m not asking why they found our website. I’m asking like, why do you think somebody searching for Soylent Green and Impossible Burger? If I may the correlator between those two brands and why someone would want to search for them?
No, but I don’t think we’re not talking about Soylent the brand. We’re talking about the movie Soylent Green.
Spoiler alerts, at the end of the movie, Charlton Heston is like, “Soylent Green is people. It’s people.” He finds out that this food source for the future of humanity is made up of ground-up human bodies. Someone is thinking that maybe there’s an element of the composition of the Impossible Burger that is made from human body parts.
Wouldn’t that be so disturbing? What a horrible prank to play on vegans. That’s why it’s so good. You said that being vegan meant that you didn’t need animals, but you didn’t say that you didn’t eat people. We thought it was okay. It’s technically vegan. Socialize in whatever way is accessible to you and feels good to you. Click To Tweet The people that we ground up for the patties, they deserved it. I’m going to give you a prompt too, Jason. We’re going to pretend that we’re part of an improv troupe. Try not to think too much about it. Pretend you’re on stage and you’re on the spot. This query is songs about adulthood. Will you make up a song about adulthood?
The one that immediately came to mind was, “They gave up their wine and they started packing left before the sun came up that day. The end into eternal summer slacking. Where were they going without ever knowing the way?”
What made you think of that?
That song came out of the late ’90s, early 2000s
Who sang that?
I don’t remember the band, but it’s called The Way. It was about two people I assume a couple who has kids. I thought of adulthood the first time like you referenced that. That’s the first song The Way. It’s a song about two adults escaping their mundane home life.
My challenge for you is not to sing a song that already exists. It was to make up a song about adulthood on the spot.
“Sometimes the pressure is there to make up dinner or with flair. You’ve got four hungry mouths, don’t let it go South. You got to do something don’t dare. Go into the kitchen and make some food because it’s your time to make something that’s cool or maybe you’ll do a casserole. You’ll put it in their hole and when I say a-hole, I mean mouth hole. Don’t think of dirty things. That’s what we will bring. It’s your night to make dinner, even though you don’t want to and maybe you convince somebody else to do the dishes.” I pulled it straight out of my ass.
You did a much better job than I probably would have. I feel like for the reader if you have a weird sense of humor as we do, and you’re a big fan of Jason, people become big fans of yours. It’s always interesting to me. People get obsessed with you. They love you. I feel like some people read this blog for you and they’re annoyed that you’re doing it with me because they wish that it was you. Maybe that’s insecurity. If you want to see a random moment of Jason’s, one of my favorite things is I believe still on your Instagram as a highlight, it’s a story that you did. It’s you singing about the chakra.
That’s the first highlight. It’s even before Bella, which Bella, by the way, her highlight reel on Instagram stories still the most popular.
You should look into your Instagram insights to see how many people watch that chakra story highlight because that was recorded years ago. It’s at our friend Nathaniel’s birthday party. I was amused by that. I’m bringing that up because that was you making up some random song. Was it one of those things where somebody said a word and then you had to make up a song about it or how did that even happen?
No, it was total freestyle. Nathaniel had a drum machine and a keyboard. It was looping and making beats and we were passing the microphone back and forth. There was no instigation. I was pulling out songs about chakras, drinking tea, what spiritual women want and dating spirits, random ass stuff. Sometimes I come up with stuff that’s good. That night I was pretty much on fire. The one I made up about adulthood and doing dishes and making dinner wasn’t so great. It was fine. That’s the thing about taking a swing with your creativity. Sometimes it’s going to suck ass and sometimes you’re going to come up with stuff that’s amazing and that’s life. You’re not going to come up with something amazing every single time. It’s the willingness to keep creating and keep doing things. Eventually, you’re going to strike gold.
One thing I like about you, Jason, is that you’re willing to do those things. Whereas someone like me, who’s introverted and a little bit shy in those situations. It was hard for me to even sing Happy Birthday. I had to take a deep breath and pumped myself up to sing on here and then. Try not to get too critical. Like, “Am I going to sound bad?” I will never read back this episode because I’m afraid I sounded bad at singing, then I would be critical.
You sound great. You were in key the whole time.
It’s hard to sing Happy Birthday. It’s funny because it’s such a common song that we sing, but it’s a challenging song to sing.
Your pitch was great. You stayed in key. I thought you did a good job.
Thank you. The benefits of friendship is to have somebody point out your good qualities when you did a good job. Give you some praise. I appreciate that. I’d be curious, you could DM Jason and tell him like, “I listened to the chakra song because I heard it mentioned on the show.” I’m curious how many people are going to go do that. How many more queries should we do before we wrap 1, 2?
Let’s do one more because I have something I want to say that came to me at the end of the episode.
The last one I was amused by this, the query was, a better way to sexually warm-up? Do they mean foreplay or did they mean before foreplay? Do the pre foreplay? Was it breathing? Lubricant? Warm-up could mean a lot of different things. Be willing to keep creating and doing things, and eventually, you're going to strike gold. Click To Tweet
Is it fitness where you stretch before you work out?
Pelvic thrusts? Hip openers? Sexual warm-ups.
These are the things I hope somebody comes back or finds this show because they’re determined to find answers to that query. They keep searching for it and it’d be nice if they could let us know what did they mean by that? Maybe somebody else reading will have a different theory on why they’re searching for that but sexually warm up.
Is it eating a meal with your lover that is laced with aphrodisiac foods ahead of time? We could go in a lot of directions with a sexual warm-up.
That reminds me, it would be nice to have your friends whose names are escaping me that specialize in sexuality, Jason. There is a couple we saw them at Brendon Burchard’s event.
Jaiya and Ian.
Wouldn’t they’ll be interesting show guests?
Yes, they would. We haven’t talked to them in several years but loved their work. Yes. They would be phenomenal guests, Whit. It’s a great suggestion.
Maybe they’ll have an answer to this query.
Someone has got to have an answer to what a sexual warm-up is. On a completely different note as we wrap up dear reader being that it is my birthday and I do get a lot of queries on social media. Perhaps you may be wondering what you can do to celebrate me if you feel inclined if that thought has crossed your mind. I am requesting that anybody who feels moved to do that make a donation to our favorite animal rescue in California, which is called Little Love Rescue. Our dear friend, Brittany Littleton has been running it for many years. It’s where I adopted Bella and my kitten Julius from. Whitney and I are both huge fans of their work. I often do animal rescue. I’ve done a lot of transport to them and rescued a beautiful cat named Gil who was on his death bed and got him back to health, got him fixed up and got him to a foster mom who adopted him. We love Brittany’s work and all the volunteers there at Little Love Rescue. They are facing a sticky, legal crisis. I don’t want to get into that. You can follow them on Instagram for more of that. If you want to find out more about their life-saving work of many different animal species, not just dogs and cats, they’ve taken in lizards, pigs, bunnies, rabbits, possums, birds, and all kinds of wonderful creatures that need protection and rehabilitation. Request that you donate to them. They are a small family-run nonprofit organization. We love them. Without them, I wouldn’t have two of my favorite companions in my life, Bella and Julius. Please support them if you feel moved to do so. I would appreciate that too, as a gesture for my birthday.
Any time of the year making a donation is a wonderful gift. I’m glad that you brought it up. I highly recommend following them on Instagram. Although I will preface by saying it’s a little dangerous because every single animal they post about on there, I want to adopt. I can’t tell you how many times I will pause and seriously consider it. There was a rabbit on there that I wanted to adopt. Sometimes I’ll think, “Maybe I can foster, but I know that I would be a foster fail.” It’s tough. If I could rescue all the animals I would. Don’t let that discourage you. I’m saying, you have to be prepared for having a strong desire and to rescue them. If you don’t live in Los Angeles, that’s okay. What you can do, A, as Jason said, donate and B, you can spread the word. Anybody else you know on social media, for example, if you know somebody in California or where even nearby. Some people will travel hours to rescue an animal. They don’t necessarily have to be close to Los Angeles, but your support by liking, commenting, and sharing helps build their social media platform. That in itself is a huge gift. There’s a lot that you can do. Jason, wishing you a very happy birthday. Thank you to the reader for reading. We’d love to hear from you. Please be in touch with us. We’d love for you to fill out that survey that I mentioned, which again is at Podcast.Wellevatr.com/survey.
I want to thank you for the sweet birthday blessing and song at the beginning of this and taking so much time to not only acknowledge me but acknowledge all the beautiful memories. Doing this work with you is a real gift. As my best friend and business partner, someone I’ve known for years, it’s been wonderful in this time of massive change, evolution, growth and all the things we’re experiencing to also be in this new stage of our growth together. I want to acknowledge you and tell you how much I love and appreciate you. Thank you.
Thanks because I love to be acknowledged.
Whitney has this thing where she points at herself and cocks her head up like a proud French bulldog and goes like, “I want to be acknowledged.”
It’s the little kid in me. We did a whole episode about receiving compliments and it feels good sometimes to say, “I received that, thank you so much for that. That feels good.” There’s no shame in enjoying acknowledgment. My love language is words of affirmation or one of my top love languages. If yours are also words of affirmation as a reader, take it in and ask people too. I tell Jason when I want to be acknowledged for something. Even though I’m asking him to acknowledge me, it still feels good when he does it versus if he did it out of nowhere as he did. Thank you for acknowledging me, Jason. I appreciate you. I love you. I hope you have a phenomenal birthday, despite the interesting circumstances we’re in. For the reader, if your birthday fell during COVID minded in March, my birthday fell 1 or 2-week into quarantine. That was certainly interesting, but it was fine. It wasn’t exciting, but birthdays don’t always need to be, or special occasions. That’s all about making the most of it. We hope that you enjoy all the different tips and perspectives we offer in our free eBook. Until next time. We appreciate you, we acknowledge you. We hope that you’ll stick around, especially for our upcoming episode about the hustle culture!
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- The Vegan Keto Journey with Chef Nicole Derseweh – Previous episode
- The Magic and History of 55: How Numbers Help Us Understand Ourselves – Previous episode
- Jason’s Journey: Pursuing Music, Acting and Culinary – Previous episode
- Existential Kink
- From Chaos to Calm
- Whitney’s Journey: Social Acceptance, Introversion and Being a Wonder Junkie – Previous episode
- Blissful, Balanced, & Badass
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- The Best Birthday Party Ever – Jason’s 40th Birthday Party on YouTube
- I Am Too Spiritual For My Chakras – Instagram Stories
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