If I woke up one day, and there was litterly nothing to worry about—business is running perfectly, no problems to solve at all—I think that would be much more conerning than how life normally is. There's always a problem to solve, always some adversity to get passed.
If everything was good and there were none of those things to deal with, I would imagine I'm not pushing hard enough. I think it's an Ali quote that says "If you're always winning, then you're not fighting tough enough opponents." If shit isn't hard, maybe we need to step up our game.
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0:00 This idea has come up in my head quite a bit over the years, you know, you're dealing with some shit in your life, what, in any aspect of your life, and you have this thought, that's kind of like, man, everything's gonna be so much better once this is over this is done or once I finish this or overcome this, whatever that is, and then you get that relief. And then there's something else right after there's like always something to worry about, there's always something to be concerned about, or something like that. So lately, I had this, I experienced that. And it just sort of reminded me of it. So it sparked me in to kind of try to think about how to talk about it, and how to deal with this kind of thing. And so, one couple of examples that I'll give, and this is what sparked this, this whole idea was, for about six weeks, I was dealing with some permit issues at my business, and it was not anything that we did, the building manager, or previous tenant had changed the plans before the fuck before we got there. So when the fire inspector came, he sort of popped into our business one day, and he was like, Hey, your floor plan isn't the same, you guys aren't supposed to be operating.
1:13 And it's like, holy shit, we'd already been like, completely up and running, you know, like, all these printing machines and all this staff and fucking spray paint all this stuff. So it was like, really stressful to have that happen. And just like, I don't know, free for those that have businesses, you'll understand. I don't know, I guess anybody will understand this. But it's like, it often feels like running a business is like the most fucking fragile as the best word I can think of, like shit ever. Like they're like one thing can happen. That could sort of derail a whole bunch of things. Like I remember, in 2020 Everybody was buying up all the bottles for hand sanitizer and shit. So it was like a year and a half or something. We just couldn't get the bottles for drip machines. And we kept trying to get other things. So we had this popular product, and literally no way to sell it. And it was just like, Fuck, man, like something like that can happen. So anyway, so this kind of shit stresses me out just knowing that this stuff can happen. So when, when this happened, I was like, fuck, man, what's going to happen? So we're kind of like operating a little weird, like, the door was shut, but we were in there kind of situation. But at any minute, like the city could come and say, you know, you got to send all these people home all this shit. Anyway, that stuff all ended up getting resolved took about six weeks. And it was on my mind all the fucking time for that whole six weeks, like I wasn't sleeping well. And it was just stressing me out. I was just like, what's going to happen?
2:48 How is this going to affect our business? Like, are we going to they were even he was even like saying stuff about the spray paint like you can't have this in here. So I was like, Fuck man, we've been selling spray paint since 2015. Like we're not going to be able to do that anymore. Anyway, was just like this big thing. And so it was really stressing me out quite a bit. And some of the kind of lessons and action steps I'm going to talk about later. Like I completely forgot all about it had I thought about these things I probably would have had an easier time. So what got me thinking along the lines of You know, once you get over one thing, something else pops up. So I remember I was thinking I'm like man, it's just going to be such a relief when this is done. We're going to be just back open and backup you know, everything's going good everything's done you know, I had all these plans and now we're putting those into motion but literally the day that I had relief like I was so relieved and then this should happen at at the studio and it wasn't like a huge deal but it was like kind of going back to that thing I was talking about how how sort of business is this kind of like weird balance thing where sometimes just a little thing can just disrupt the whole ship. And so for the last several years I've been working towards scaling my business with systems and getting the right people in place in order so I don't have to actually be there to do this stuff.
4:13 So now I don't have to I don't have to print stickers I don't have to do any of the day to day well I have to do very very little of the day to day like outside of ordering product and helping lead the team and having meetings and stuff I don't have to actually go in and print stickers and Phil product all that stuff so this was like a long time coming to get to the point where i i could do this and now I can focus on actually like big vision shit like scaling the business and helping refine systems and marketing and doing all this kind of stuff to actually grow the business. It's hard to do all that stuff when you're printing stickers are doing this in the business type shit. So I'm feeling good that I'm I'm at that point. But that's where this sort of like, kind of delicate balance of shit happens. Like, if something is something happens, then it might end up sending me back into that in the business thing. So we had this, like, this controversial sticker come through. And we, for the most part, we try not to try not to censor anything or do anything and no censorship is like a different issue. Like we have the right to not print whatever we want.
5:25 But at the same time we try to, we try to print anything that comes by, but sometimes some questionable shit happen that happened, a questionable sticker came in, and half the team was really adamant about not printing it, like we shouldn't do this. And the other half of the team was like, we shouldn't censor this or whatever. It's kind of beside the point. But anyway, it got all heated and like, it didn't get too bad. But at the same time, it was like, it was like I said, like, you never know, when sort of something is going to disrupt everything. So my brain just starts going crazy, like, you know, is everybody starting to think different things about each other, like, if the group of people that are adamant about not doing it Are they are they all going to kind of team up and leave and all this kind of stuff? Anyway, I was just blown it out of proportion. But that's what got me thinking about this and got me thinking, like, reminded me of, you know, life is just a series of problems to solve. And that's not all of life, but it's a big, it's a big part of life, you know, you're always having situations and scenarios that you have to find solutions to.
6:37 And a lot of times, they're stressful and, and that stress, you know, in the it's a form of adversity, obviously, all these kinds of issues. And, you know, I understand people go through all kinds of crazy shit, you know, like, on top of that, like after the, everything's kind of resolved, and everybody kind of, we found like, a good way forward. And everybody seems pretty chill. But then my dog had an episode, he's a really old dog. He's like, 20, something years old. He'd never had this happen, but like, I guess he he fell over, Jesse was home, he tipped over and kind of lost consciousness for for a few seconds. And he's got a heart condition. And again, he's really old. So I took him to the vet. And they, they were like, they were like talking about putting them down, like right then and there. But I was like, Wait a second, like, I've been down that road, like, I'm not going to keep a dog around living
7:37 a terrible existence, just to make myself feel better. I don't do that, you know, if I feel like the dogs ready to go, and they're given me signs, you know, as hard is it as it is like, that's the path I want to go. But this vet was rushing it, they didn't really take any time to look at him. They didn't take any do any tests or anything, it was just pretty much strictly based on what we said. And so, you know, obviously, that that's, that's, that's not an easy thing to deal with. He's he's doing way better. He's still really old. So I don't know, we're gonna have to deal with this. Soon, you know, at some point, but anyway, so it was just like another thing. And what I was saying, as I keep getting sidetracked, I understand, like, different people's levels of adversity, obviously, these these are in comparison to a lot of different people. These are small, small issues, but that's just what, what I'm handling at the current time. So it got me thinking, and this, this whole thing is what got me thinking about this, this whole topic. And so I started thinking deeply about it, doing some research and kind of refreshing my memory about a lot of things. And it's like, obviously, your life is going to be full of stresses and all this kind of stuff, especially if you're trying to do all kinds of different things. And you know, you're going to be hit with all kinds of different adversities. In life.
9:03 I mean, that's just life in general. So I was thinking about it that, you know, I've heard people tell stories about people that, you know, they're really successful. And then they lost it all in this story is kind of like, oh, well, this thing happened. And then, you know, I really never really recovered from from this bad deal or something like that. And then you know, this happened. And then it's like a series of things happen. And every time that happens, it's sort of chips a little bit away from them, until eventually they kind of feel like they can't get back. They can't get back on track. I've heard this before. And so it got me thinking about the concept of of adversity. And the idea that it could go one or one way or the other, you know, you can allow adversity to tear you down. Or you can actually, you know, utilize it as a form of building yourself up you cuz if you think about it every single time you overcome something, I feel like you get a little bit, you make another deposit in that, like mental toughness bank account, you know what I mean?
10:12 So you're kind of like, every time you overcome something, even if it's small, I feel like you gain a little bit of something. And so it almost seems like that's just a perspective that you have to have in your mind, in order to not let it tear you down. I mean, I'm sure there's stuff that's outside of people's control that, that's going to lead to some kind of breakdown in your mind to where maybe you don't have a choice, I don't know, I think you do have a choice. But I'm just speculating, I think you have a choice to make the decision that these adversities that I'm going through are actually going to be something that, that gives me strength, even though it sucks. Once I get on the other side of it, I'm going to be stronger, I'm going to have more knowledge, I'm going to know that I overcame something, I'm going to feel like I won. All of those kinds of things, I feel like that's just a perspective shift that you can have in your mind, almost no matter what it is you go through, and I try to, I don't know, maybe I don't need to say this, but I understand there's some really terrible shit, you know, that I've never gone through.
11:17 So I'm not trying to say that, across the board. This is just how it is. I'm just this is my perception. So in my opinion, if you have that perspective shift, and you see all of these adversities as a way of building yourself up, and you're seeing that you're actually going to benefit from getting over the other side of them, I feel like that's helpful in itself, just just to help you get through it if you change that perspective in your mind, but you're also building up mental toughness. And so mental toughness, obviously is super important in life, because you need to be able to overcome shit, that's coming your way, especially if you if you believe in this idea that it's just, there's always going to be something over and over again. And so the idea is that cultivate mental toughness. And one of the ways to do that is to have this perspective shift that you're gonna benefit from this. So some of the ways that I found mental toughness to be defined, you know, I'll just go through these resilience, it's your capacity to overcome difficulties, your ability to bounce back from setbacks and things like that, there's a, there's a layer of confidence involved.
12:27 So if you have built up some good mental toughness, when you do go through something, you're going to have confidence that you're going to get out the other side of it, because you've overcome all these things, and you've gained that strength along the way, then there's determination, you know, you're determined to make it through the other side, you're not going to give up you're going to keep pushing through whatever it is, no matter how hard it is, you're going to just keep pushing, there's focus, the ability to, you know, to focus on the task at hand that are the series of tasks that are required to get you on to get you through whatever it is that you're going through, there's control the ability to maintain emotional control. And that's, in my opinion, at least for me, that's one of the hardest things to do. And that's kind of what I was dealing with, when all this shit was happening with the business. I was I was having a lot of trouble maintaining control over my stress levels, you know, some I was allowing my emotions and my What if kind of scenarios to take over. So I was losing, losing control over that stuff. And then another thing is optimism, like maintaining a positive attitude, that you're gonna get through it. And so I kind of had that. So I remember having a meeting with my team when this first happened.
13:42 And, and I was very confident in telling them, like, look, we're going to get through this, you know, regardless of what happens, like, no matter what happens, we're going to find a way, we're going to find a way to make this work. Like I had already started putting plans in place and all this sort of shit for all these different potential scenarios. And so I was often optimistic that that we were going to get through it. So that was, I feel like I feel like over over the years of operating a business and and that's just sort of like par for the course, like you're just always going to have to clean up messes and always going to have to deal with things. So since 2002, I've been running my own businesses, so I've been dealing with all this shit for quite a long time. So I feel like every single time I overcame something that was building all that shit up so that's all these kinds of like mental toughness definitions or or whatever you want to call those. Like dealing with all that stuff over and over again, I felt like it gave me enough to push through like I'm not gonna give up even though I'm fucking stressed the fuck out so. So in my research, I also came across something called cognitive reframing. I'm pretty sure I've talked about this or some aspects of these and it's just about changing your perspective on the situation. And one of the,
15:06 obviously, what I just talked about is like, it's definitely a perspective shift. So if you're getting hit one after the other of shit, you overcome something, and then something comes along and you feel like you can't catch a break, which I don't like that term. I mean, you feel like, let's, let's not use that can't catch a break, that's kind of like a victim sounding term, but you just feel like shit, man, I just want to, I just want a little bit of time between these things, like, let me get a little bit of rest between the shit and you're getting hit one after the other. The the idea of cognitive reframing, it fits into what I was talking about earlier. So instead of allowing that, those adversities to break you down, you can reframe it and think like, alright, that's, this is another another opportunity for me to overcome something, this is another opportunity for me to learn some new skills to develop my, my my resilience and be able to push through this and then I know I'm going to come out the other side stronger, like that's a, that's totally a perspective shift and reframing the situation, you know, that I that I find incredibly helpful, as soon as I can kind of get that perspective at least gives me a little bit of a break until my brain runs through so many what if scenarios that that I have a hard time, you know, I have to kind of push that reframing back in into the front.
16:26 And so another, another thing, and I had completely forgot all about this, I learned it from Marcus Aurelius, Andersen, and he was talking about being grateful for the hardships. And I remember, a lot of times when I was really stressed out, I have this, this thing I do in the morning, and I do this every day. So I get up in the morning, and I have a half gallon water bottle, I'll fill it up. And then I go outside and stay in the sun. And I'll drink a half of that. So like I just chug down a quarter gallon of water, I have a feeling. And I've read and heard somewhere that being in the morning sun, like different neural transmitters, fire, and it kind of makes you wake up and kind of alert your body that, you know, it's time to start the day. And I've noticed that when I was doing that, so. So when I was dealing with a lot of shit, part of that routine was I would go out there and I'd be drinking my water. And I would, I would think about all of the things that were hard, and all of the things that were stressful. And I would, I would be grateful for those things. And I would think in my mind, I'm like, I'm grateful for going through this because I know I'm gonna learn, you know, different things. And I know, I'm gonna, I know, I'm gonna push through this, and I'm gonna get stronger on the other side.
17:43 So being grateful for the adversity is a really great way of reframing the situation's you're going through. I know a lot of people talk about gratitude all the time. And it's kind of a, it's a little bit cliche sounding. And it's kind of like a buzzword these days. But I don't know that that's the kind of gratitude, they're talking about being grateful for the shit, for the stuff that sucks. I don't know, it's something interesting happens, like when I'm out there, and I'm doing that. And I really am not just going through the motions, like I can actually find a way to be grateful for it and actually feel that gratitude. It makes me feel way better, like way, way better about the scenario. So that's one of the best things that I've found to be able to deal with this kind of shit. So the other thing, and I haven't been doing this very much lately, and I need to, I need to get back into it. So all of this stuff, sort of sparking these kind of like old tools that I that I kind of forgot about. But you know, and some of these may sound kind of silly, because we're talking about building up mental toughness, which is like a big deal thing.
18:48 And it's something that's going to over help you overcome shit when I when I lift list off some shit, and may seem like small stuff, but the reason and I think everybody knows I'm not a fucking neuroscience, neuroscientist and all this shit, but what I've read about all this kind of stuff, and just what I feel like I've experienced myself like the brain is very adaptable. You know, there's like the neuroplasticity. So the more you expose yourself to certain things, certain knowledge, certain scenarios, your brain rewires ship in order to be able to either do those things better or overcome that shit and all that kind of stuff. So these little exercises in order to try to force yourself to build up mental toughness, I find incredibly helpful and I feel like I've kind of fallen off of doing those things. So I'm going to start doing that shit again, but a couple of like really simple things. One is take a really cold shower, and I've talked about it before but but it really is like such a good practice because unless you're like somebody that is not bothered by Super Cold water.
20:01 You know, if you set a timer on your phone, for example, like for five minutes and say, I'm going to take a five minute cold shower, and I can't get out of here until that timer goes off. For most of us, me included, especially like in the wintertime, in the wintertime when the water is cold as fuck. All I want to do is get out of there like it's, it's really, really uncomfortable. And so every minute that you stay in there, and then especially when you stay in there until the buzzer goes off, don't you think you're building up some kind of resilience, you're building up some kind of some kind of skills, you're getting reps in and not quitting? You know, it's a small thing, it's like five minutes of your life. If you do that regularly. Some people do cold plunges, like I might want to try that sometime. It's very popular these days, but cold showers. I feel like it's definitely worthwhile. So you're gonna build up some kind of mental toughness. And this isn't about like, you take one shower, and then all of a sudden, you can fucking overcome anything. It's just about getting the reps in and doing these kinds of things over and over again, other small things like choosing harder options, and all these different kinds of scenarios. So a couple of really easy examples, just stop taking elevators like take the stairs. I don't really take elevators that much anymore.
21:27 Well, I guess I do. But I know Jesse and I we like to take the stairs when it's when it's an option. I almost feel like that one's not even very good. But I guess just to different people. It probably is. I mean, it's just about, you know, like you could park far away or something like that. Or you could do you could do a work, you could do your workouts and like the most unfavorable conditions like so, you know, maybe it's hot outside, you know, be safe about it and everything, but I don't know, kind of struggling coming up with these. I had some some written down, I don't know, try to think of ways to take the hard way. You know what I mean? talk yourself into it. And I think for me, also, you know, talking myself out of eating certain things and talking myself into doing my workouts and do it, especially doing my workouts when I really don't want to, like this morning. This morning, I was going to do my my kettlebell thing. And, you know, it's like 45 minutes long, it's kind of intense. And I was putting it off until I was sort of at a time like I was either going to do it or I wasn't going to do it because I had to get to the I had to get to work so so I ended up doing it. And like the whole time I was like, I even had to talk myself out of stopping early. And so I feel like I probably all of those kinds of things are are contributing to it, to building up mental toughness. So a large part of life is just overcoming, you know, a series of different problems to solve. And every time you solve something, there's going to be something else. It's almost like a fucking video game. Like you get to one level, and then it gets harder and then the next level gets harder. I think life is like that. And building up mental toughness is definitely gonna be a good tool to have at your disposal
23:26 All right. appreciate each and every one of you guys who are supporting the cause and continue to spread the love and yeah, stay up