March 7, 2023

The Power of Vulnerability: Why It's Time for Men to Drop the Masculine Mask

The Power of Vulnerability: Why It's Time for Men to Drop the Masculine Mask

We often associate vulnerability with weakness, especially in men, who are socialized to be stoic and unemotional. But the truth is, vulnerability is not only courageous, but it's also necessary for our mental health and overall well-being. In this...

We often associate vulnerability with weakness, especially in men, who are socialized to be stoic and unemotional. But the truth is, vulnerability is not only courageous, but it's also necessary for our mental health and overall well-being.

In this episode, we share our recent appearance on Self Love and Sweat with Lunden Souza, where explore the reasons why men find it hard to be vulnerable, and how society's expectations play a role in this. They discuss the detrimental effects of bottling up emotions and how opening up can lead to deeper connections with others.

We also share practical tips and strategies for embracing vulnerability, such as starting small and seeking out supportive communities. They emphasize the importance of self-compassion and learning to be comfortable with discomfort.

You can expect to come away from this episode with a better understanding of why vulnerability is crucial for men's well-being and practical tools for cultivating it in their own lives.

In this episode we discuss:

  • Having vulnerable conversations
  • How our stories are not our own
  • Breaking the chains of neglect
  • Imagining the person you want to become

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If you enjoyed this episode, check out:

How To Get Your Mind Right And Your Body Tight With Lunden Souza




Why is it so damn hard for guys to let our guard down and be vulnerable?

Why is society conditioned us to think vulnerability is a sign of weakness.

These are some of the questions we were asked on self-love and sweat the podcast. It's a show hosted by a previous guest of ours, London Souza.

We're sharing that episode with you today because being vulnerable is crucial for our wellbeing. It's not just about being able to express our emotions and connect with others. It's also about taking care of our mental health and avoiding the shitty consequences of bottling everything up.

So today we'll explore practical tips for opening up. Share stories of our own struggles and show you why vulnerability is the ultimate sign of strength. [00:01:00]

Lunden: why do you think. And do you think it's getting better, but why do you think it's so sticky off limits for men to have these deep, vulnerable relationships and you know, have you seen, I don't know, an improvement in that?

Do you feel like as a man and as men who are in, uh, relationship as friends and close, you know, people in your lives, you feel like you're seeing more of that now? Or where do you think we have a long way?

Jeremy: Well, to answer the first part of the question first, uh, I think it starts with what we're told as young men, especially, you know? Mm-hmm. , 3, 4, 5 years old, toughen up. What's your problem? Why are you stop crying? You know, don't, don't make me turn this car around, you know, whatever, whatever the thing is, like any outward expression of emotion as a young boy, and probably for girls too, I'm, I'm not trying to, That experience completely.

But my experience as a young man was if you show emotion, you're causing a problem. Knock it. . So I think many, many [00:02:00] boys are raised that way. Don't show it. Toughen up. Get on the field. Get on the field. I don't care if it hurts, rub some dirt on it. Get out there and make the play. That's sort of the experience, I think.

And I do see an evolution. I mean, just maybe because we're so deep in it, but I mean, we're having conversations. Constantly with other men on their podcast. Mm-hmm. that are, that have the same vision of it's okay to cry, it's okay to have, you know, some more feminine light qualities. They don't have to replace your masculine qualities.

They are, in addition to, they make you a more complete and, and full human being. So. You know, perhaps I'm too immersed in, in the genre because of what we do every day. Uh, but I do think the fact that we are having those conversations when, you know, three years ago when we started this, we went, Hey, we're kind of an anomaly.

We should try this. I think that, I think that's a glimmer of hope that, that things are changing.

Lunden: Cool. Cool. Yeah. I remember when I posted on my stories a few weeks back when I was getting ready for episode a hundred. I was like, what have you learned since pod podcasting? And I, I don't [00:03:00] know which one of you actually typed the response, but it was from your Fit Mess account.

And it was like, I, we've learned that our stories are not our own. They're ones that we maybe didn't even, this is me paraphrasing, but it was like they're not our own and sometimes we don't even. Time, this is a lot of words to say what you said, but don't take the time to recognize like, Hey, they're not our own and we can rewrite them.

It was like something like that that you put as you're learning and I was like, yes, cuz that pertains so much to podcasting, right? And our limiting beliefs and not good enough and can we do it? But then also, um, You know the other stories like we might think men are not supposed to show emotion or have the tough conversations or cry or be overwhelmed or have some of these softer, more, um, yeah, feminine components.

And so I loved when you shared that as one of your learnings because I think that's something. I don't know what you guys feel, but I think with podcasting and coaching, I think that that's the critical component for us to keep coming in contact with these stories. We're like, Hey, I don't know if I [00:04:00] believe that I wanna change it, and I wanna share about how I change it and talk to about other people about how they changed it.

You know, I just, I love that change process. I love the idea of that evolution and continuing to evolve and be different. And sometimes I think too, just change in general. People can be very like, You know, change what you know. So it's like one thing to accept that, hey, our stories are not our own. And then also have the courage to, to change that narrative through doing a podcast, through having tough conversations and all of those things.

So I just wanted to say I really appreciated. That learning that you shared on the stories? I can, I really feel

Jeremy: that. Yeah. And, and that was, that was something that was a really tangible moment for me. Just a few weeks ago. I was at a family meal and it really highlighted this for me in a way that I'd never really had clarity on, no matter how much I'd been sharing that, you know, the stories are not your own and all that.

This really tangible moment happened. I was at a family dinner. My fam, you know, family from all over the country was there. My mom made [00:05:00] dinner for every. Made lasagna for, uh, for vegans, for lactose intolerance. There were literally four different lasagnas, and I dunno if you've ever made a lasagna, but it's, it's no easy task.

She made four to satisfy everyone's dietary needs, and as everyone's dishing up, she's setting out all the disclaimers. Oh, I had to use this. I hope this is okay, because I don't know if you're gonna like this because, just because, and I just, I kind of heard it and let it. But then she kept doing it as people going, kept going back for thirds and fourths of it.

And she kept like setting up all the reasons why it was going to not meet your expectations, whatever it was. And I just went, oh my God. That's the voice in my head. That's, that's where I got that is I heard my mom doing that. And so there's all these times when I go into meetings expectations with this story of, oh, here, here's why I'm late.

Oh, sorry, my internet connections. Like I'm preparing for whatever I can do to lower the bar. So that just by showing up, I win. Right. And it's crazy. And, and I sort of laughed at my mom and I [00:06:00] was like, mom, it's o you can, everyone loves it. Why are, why do you keep dismissing it? It's incredible. Like you, it's almost gone.

You don't have to keep setting the expectation low. But that was such a moment of clarity where I was like, I can't believe how many stories, not even. Of, you know, Hey, you don't feel that way. Hey, you don't feel emotion. But it was people, my mom and my dad and others around me that would say things about themselves out loud.

And because I value them and their role in my life so much, that meant that that must be true for me too. And only now at 40 5:00 AM I realizing, oh my God, that's not even my voice in my head. That's insane.

Lunden: Oh my gosh. I love that story. So real, so true. And I think everybody listening can identify with a moment where whether, yeah, it was a parent, a caregiver, a relative, whatever, where you're like, oh my gosh, that's the source, or at least part of the source that I can see now.

And sometimes you trace things back. Yeah. Right. And you're like, oh, and I, I. I heard [00:07:00] this kind of, um, term, I forget who. Okay, so when I follow on social media, Instagram, master Kip Maston Kip, he posted something about being like a transitional character in your family. Like being the one that has that moment where you're like, I figured out where it came from and it stops with me.

Did you have that feeling? Do you have that feeling for your children where you're like, okay, I'm gonna go outta my way to make sure that. I'm checking myself too as they're checking me, like, how do you do that? I'm not a parent. So like how do you do that?

Jeremy: Yeah. Yeah, I, I mean, I think I was trying to do that anyways with a lot of changes that I've made.

I mean, there's, there was alcoholism in my family, there was just, uh, you know, a lot of dad issues going way, way back. And so I went into parenthood going, I'm gonna break that chain. And, you know, and a big part of my journey to better health and, and taking care of myself was sobriety. I mean, and, and I wasn't like an alcoholic, but when I did stop drinking, I realized how much I used it to manage my emotions and, and to cope.

Uh, so [00:08:00] I've, I've automatically broken that chain that goes back generations. And so my kids don't see me drinking alcohol. They don't have to worry about dad coming home drunk. They don't have to worry about, are mom and dad gonna fight tonight because dad's at the bar too late? Like, that's erased from, from our line.

So there's little things like that. But yeah, this moment that I just described is one that has me measuring my words a little more and has me measur. How do, how do I show up? Am I complaining about myself in any way? Um, you know, when people come over and they start talking about, oh yeah, I need to lose weight.

I'm fat. Like, whatever. I try to like, either politely divert the conversation to something else, but because I just, I just don't want them hearing those same messages. and, you know, having those plant seeds in their head, that, that's, that, that applies to them too.

Zach: Yeah. And there was a , similar situation in my life where, I had to break the chain with my daughter because I mean, I didn't have to go very far.

You know, the bar was really low with my parents. , just tons and tons of neglect and [00:09:00] like, uh, CPSs involvement when I was five, being taken away from my mom, , because she was out partying for days on end. , So with my daughter, , it really didn't take much, but I had a similar moment, like in my kitchen, , a couple of months ago, but my entire life, like I was called fat, stupid, ugly, , by my parents, by my family, by everyone who are, you know, supposed to love me. So I took those in as truth.

and believed them my whole life, and somehow I managed to get to a point in my life where I'm doing really well, I'm very healthy, I'm happy, all of these things. I was sitting in my kitchen and I got this message from my boss who basically said, you know, great job. You did awesome. And I caught a picture, like a, a reflection of myself in the stove and like saw my body, which, you know, like I, it's fairly trim.

Saw my body and my boss was like, Hey, great job. And I just had this moment where all of those truths [00:10:00] that I believed my entire life like crashed. And I started crying in my kitchen going, oh my God, I'm not fat, I'm not stupid. I am like, I, I do look good like this moment. It was so beautiful, having that , three seconds of just pure joy that all that stuff was not true and it was garbage.

Lunden: Yes. Uh, I love, thank you for sharing. So powerful. So powerful to have those moments where you're just like, wait, all this, that I've been thinking, I'm aware. And I'm calling bullshit on it, and it's not true. It's not even my voice. And then to have that like overwhelm of just like compassion for ourselves and love and that shedding of, you know, like you said, you just crying in that moment of like, wait, you know, it's almost like I feel like a death.

Of former self, of what you used to believe and those old thoughts and patterns and like a rebirth of who you're choosing to be and like what you're choosing to make this [00:11:00] situation mean. And um, yeah, I do a lot of story rewrites with my clients and it seems like you've done that in a nutshell, or somehow, Zach, to turn.

Your story to actually make it really matter and mean something based on like why you're here on this earth. Do you feel that way? Do you feel like I, okay. I guess the way I would ask it is, is sometimes we write these stories and it's like, but wait, I, I, I couldn't have had it any other way because that's how I am me now, and I love that.

Do you, have you gotten there yet? Do you feel like that's what you're continuing to work on and.

Zach: Yeah, absolutely. So the way I was raised, the way I grew up, as soon as I turned 18, I ended up in jail like, My whole family figured that I was gonna be dead, , or in jail for the rest of my life.

Like that's just where I was. I was 300 pounds, smoked cigarettes, like did all this stuff. And you know, something happened where I [00:12:00] just turned the corner and I started to, I realized that like who I was yesterday is not who I have to be tomorrow. And things just started to change and change and change And, you know, in telling my story here and there of like how I was raised and how I grew up and how I changed it, it made me realize how not normal it was and how far I've actually come because I'm a relatively normal person. I have my quirks, but , where I was 20 years ago. Is like 180 degree turn , but I would never be where I am today without those first 20 years.

Like it taught me a level of resiliency that I don't know I would've gotten any other way. It taught me what it's like to be on the other side. So like giving my daughter a good life. Right. I have a perfect example of what a bad life is, so I strive to make sure she doesn't have to go through that or I don't have to go through that.

Um, you know, watching my parents get old and get sick, um, and pass away [00:13:00] with regrets all over the place. Like, I don't want that. So, yeah, the first 20 years of my life sucked. But it's made the next 20 years of my life so much better.

Lunden: Mm. And that's a choice. And I love that word, resilience. I talk about that.

A lot for me for a while. Resilience was like, uh, the bounce back into a workout, like, especially like after injury or like, kind of like muscular resilience and things like that. But the more I, yeah. Meditate on that word. Think about that word and kind of what that means, you know, there's a lot of. Fire that we get to move through in our lives, or some might say have to, but I like try to say like that we get to move through in our lives and I just think, yeah, we can, we can move through that.

And it's hard and it's scary and it burns and [00:14:00] all of that. But I think that's the way that we build resilience. And I think sometimes we can hide from our situations. Even like on social media, it's like we could block people, we can, you know, if we don't wanna deal with that, we don't need to hear their viewpoint, we don't need to talk to that person.

We could just block in to be like, and so I find that like somehow, I'm noticing a little bit of like a lack of resilience, like a lack of that get up and going back into the arena despite the challenge because there's a bigger mission that is your life, that is your impact and all of those things. And so yeah.

What does resilience mean to you guys? Or do you guys think about that word a lot? I just kind of do that. Resilience and conscientious. Those are two words. I just kind of, I don't know. They've been coming to me a lot. And then you said resilience and I was like, oh yeah, of course. We're thinking about the same thing here.

Jeremy: It's funny you mentioned that cuz that word I, you know, I was escaping into my phone like anyone the other day and, uh, some TikTok video came up and it's a guy, you know, on the top of the mountain doing pushups and, you know, it was kind of your standard, you know, uh, self-help video [00:15:00] or whatever. But it was this guy basically in text sharing resilience.

You know, like I get up at four in the morning and I, I do the work, I've done everything I need to do by 9:00 AM and you're just getting outta bed and getting started. . And there was something about it that, that struck me. , and it made me realize how much I need to lean into that word and everything that goes with it.

And it reminds me, we did an episode with a guy named Chris Duffin, I don't even remember a year ago, uh, champion weightlifter, like just incredible human being. And he told the, he made this great analogy about trees, right? The, the strongest trees with the deepest roots are the ones that have withstood the w the.

And the ones that don't have the deep roots and haven't done the training against those, those winds are the ones that get knocked over. And I just, I just love that, especially like I look out my window, I'm surrounded by trees and mountains and there's a windstorm going. I just, that's where I'm at in my life right now and that's what's going on literally outside my window.

And I just keep trying to remind myself, just be like those trees that have been there for a thousand years, just do the work. Like [00:16:00] plant the deep roots and, and withstand the struggle, withstand those heavy winds because on the other side is so much strength. And even being here a year and a half ago, like I said, I I, I envisioned living in this place.

I, I moved my family from another country to literally, to this spot. I built the life that I envisioned one morning. , and it was hard and it was struggle and it was pain, but it all led to this moment similar to what Zach had. Just the other day I was with my kids at an afterschool event and like I just started at this new job and like, like every piece of this massive puzzle that I spent the last year and a half put putting together, I put the last piece into place and it just hit me like a ton of bricks.

And I'm like at this event with kids and their parents and I'm trying to not just ball cause I'm realizing I rebuilt my life from the ground up in like 15. Yes, and I have literally everything I wanted. Everything. Like there's not a box left to check. And so, so now I'm going like, okay, what [00:17:00] next? You did it.

You, you built it, you, you made it. So now what? Right? Like, cuz you can't get complacent cuz something's gonna change. The winds are gonna come back. So what do I do to stay strong and not get weak and get, you know, blown over when the winds change?

Lunden: . Yeah. Not only take action when it's windy. It's like in those moments of like, Things are great, boxes are being checked, and I'm still gonna choose to build those roots and root down. Um, because it's not a matter of if, it's just kind of when, and it's not as scary. It's just like part of life, those storms and how the Yeah, just like the weather and we have different seasons outside.

We have them, you know, different seasons internally and so sometimes I find myself yeah, rooting down in different ways to prepare for different seasons and challenges in my life. And, um, yeah. Mm-hmm. , one of them I shared right beforehand, we were talking. I was just like, yeah. I think sometimes it's important to, yeah, know when it's time to step back a little bit, know when it's time to push a little bit.

How have you guys, um, [00:18:00] yeah. In this journey of rebuilding who you are and all the stuff that you're, you know, doing, how do, do you ever feel like, um, That gas break. Gas break where you're like going hard and then you have to pull your, kind of reign yourself back in. Cuz I know there is the, yeah, the workouts and the physical stuff and the, you know, the doing.

But there's also the work ins as I call them. So do you ever find yourself, I kind kind of hear a voice. For me, it's like, Hey, Len, like it's time to, you know, work in a little bit and not so much doing. Um, do you guys call each other out on that? Do you guys help each other find that balance of like doing and go time and rest and recovery?

Like what does that look like for you?

Zach: Yeah. , I think we, we do call each other out a little bit, , more so in, in, when one of us is complaining about something, the other one will, will hear it and, and call bs, , , on the other one. But I don't think we, we actively like, encourage resting or like that in her work or anything like that.

But you know, for me personally, like [00:19:00] working out, like the physical activity, yes. Like I, I, I tend to go 120% in whatever I do. Um, Jeremy has pointed this out many times to me that, you know, it's go, go, go, go. Um, so building in like rest days for my physical exercise is, um, something I have to think about because I will work out seven days a.

And not think about it. And it's not good to do that. Like you do need, you gotta give your body a chance to recover. Um, but you're right, like in the internal work, Is also really important. And I know for me, when I set a goal and I want to hit it, like, uh, I wanna meditate five days a week, or, you know, something along those lines before I get into that, before I stumble in whatever it is that I'm trying to do to be better mentally and you know, emotionally.

I need to be okay with where I am right now, and I need to accept that I'm okay regardless of what's going on. Like I'm okay. Where I'm at is okay, I can have goals and I can have progress from the [00:20:00] past, but right now I'm okay. And just having that self-compassion to know that. I'm gonna make mistakes. I'm gonna stumble on the skull.

It's gonna be difficult. And I need to be friendly with myself, and I need to be compassionate with myself. And I, you know, this, this thing goes through my head probably five, six dozen times a day. Um, Something that I would say to myself like, Ugh, you're such a loser. Or, Ugh, I can't believe you can't do this.

I, I rephrase it to, would you say this to your daughter? Would you say, like those words that you're saying to yourself, would you say it to your daughter or would you say it's somebody that you love? And 99% of the time it's no. And I, it just like hits me like, oh, okay, I need to be compassionate. I need to be good to myself.

Like, I'm not gonna get through this by beating myself up and being painful. Like, so for me, that's kind of the recovery of the mental side is like, mm-hmm. , when I do fail, [00:21:00] be nice to myself. Like, don't be a jerk. Be really nice. And then you can pick yourself up and keep going. So, uh, uh, when I heard you ask the question, that's kind of what went through my head was self compass.

Jeremy: To touch on the mm-hmm. , the dynamic between us. It is funny because. There's, there's a push and pull, but it's always in the same direction as, like I said, Zach's going 120 miles an hour. And I'll go, dude, maybe bring it down like 107. Like, just, just take it easy.

But we're on the other hand, he's like, dummy, go to the gym. What's your problem? Go get, you know, you got all the excuses in the world. Cool story, bro. Go do it. So that's, that's sort of the dynamic I think, between us, that that works the most. Um, but to, uh, elaborate on, on Zach's point, I had a moment today where I, I've, you know, I feed my animals twice a day.

It's, I don't like doing it. It's pain in pain in the butt. I've got two dogs and a cat. And I feed them raw food. So there's this whole process where I have to think like 24 hours ahead, take that out of the [00:22:00] freezer, let it defrost in the fridge, whatever. And for like five days in a row, I keep forgetting to, to take the cat food out.

and so then I've gotta put it in hot water. We've gotta wait for it to thaw out, and it's this big annoyance. And so my wife's like, she's cleaning up stuff and I'm getting the cat food out. I'm like, oh God, I'm just like venting, right? She's like, Ugh. And she's like, what's wrong? Nothing. No, no. What is it? I just, I'm an idiot about the cat food.

I'm just an idiot about this stupid cat food. Right? Like the, that's what I said out loud. And I even like min minutes later, I was like, okay, you're not an idiot. It's, it's, it's a new habit. You, it hasn't sunk in yet. No big deal. Let it go. And I let it go. But I realized that for me, so much of it is just impatience.

Like if I had just taken a minute to actually answer the question, I was being asked by my lovely wife about the struggle I was having in the moment. If I had just acknowledged, I have plenty of time to say out loud all of the things that I need to say out loud, which is I'm really frustrated because I keep making the same mistake every day and I would really like to stop making this mistake because it's really annoying and it takes a lot of time and.[00:23:00]

Instead, I just blew up with this like, oh, I'm an idiot, because that was, I just wanted to feel that rage and get that out and get on with my day. . And so it's just, it was another reminder to me that like so many of the problems that I have in my life are just that I need to acknowledge that there's no, there's no race here.

Nobody's running a clock. Like it's, there's plenty of time to feel all the feelings and do all the things. It's okay. Uh, but, but I get in my own way a lot because I just, I want to just get onto the next thing cuz I'm in such a hurry to get to some. Imaginary destination on time. You

Lunden: just gotta be there.

You're already late. Sometimes people feel that way too. Yeah. It's like, I'm, I'm leaving at eight o'clock to get there at eight o'clock, you know? And it's like, yeah, I love how you, what you said, or you were like, yeah, I'm, I'm stupid. I'm an idiot. But then really when you broke it all down, it was just like, You were able to communicate how you were feeling and what was causing those feelings or different things like that.

Like just stating what is versus labeling you because of X, Y, or Z. And I think we can really, you know, I hear that all the time. I'm lazy. [00:24:00] I'm, I'm not consistent. I'm a procrastinator. Um, yeah, I'm a loser. I'm an idiot. Sometimes, you know, even in my own personal healing journey, I've done journal activities where I'm like, okay, London, let's be real.

What are you really saying to you? And I'll write that down and. Ooh man. really self. Yeah, that's you. Okay. You know, you're like kind of this duality going back and forth, and I know that these, you know, these stories of unworthiness or whatever we might be telling ourselves. So how do we overthrow these unworthiness stories and these like not good enough?

Uh, you know, I'm. You know, I'm an idiot. I'm stupid, not good enough. All these stories, how can we rewrite that script so then we stop playing small and actually like step into how we're really feeling and how we can really communicate and how we can really level up.

Jeremy: I think it's, it's looking at the evidence. I mean, like you said, even just writing it down, whatever it is, whatever story you're telling yourself in the moment, whatever that rage, whatever that impatience is saying, you've gotta compare it to the evidence. You gotta take it to the courtroom and, and ask the jury, is this true?

Are you really? Are you an idiot? Are [00:25:00] you, are you really a stupid, lazy idiot? Is that really what's going on? And when you start to look at the evidence, you find the real answer. You find out what the real verdict is in that case, because most of the time you were in a hurry. You made some mistakes, some you were, you did some act that any other human being would probably do and it just hit you at the wrong time or whatever it is.

There's, there's so many stories we tell ourselves and, and it comes out in that way, and we just, We have to look for whether or not it's true. Just get really curious about that feeling. Lean into it and go, where is that coming from? Why do I think that? Why am I saying that out loud or in my own head or in my journal, or whatever?

And when you compare it to everything you've done and everything that makes up who you are, you usually find that those negative angry voices are coming from somewhere else. There's something that you haven't dealt with, some unresolved. That, you know, your brain just starts connecting all those dots to when you were a kid, told that you were a fat, lazy loser that was gonna end up in jail or dead.

Like it's your brain wants to [00:26:00] make all those connections and so you have to tell it. No, there's other ones, there's plenty of other evidence that tells a completely different story, and in the end, I'm gonna win this case.

Lunden: Mm-hmm. , what about you, Zach? The story of not enough, not worthy. How do we rewrite that and actually believe.

Zach: Yeah. Um, so, I mean, I gotta, I, Jeremy kind of stole my line there. Um, I usually go with the evidence, you know, like whatever it is I'm telling myself, whatever it is. I think, I believe, um, you know, one of my therapists, you know, gave me this trick. She was like, what? Where's the evidence of that? And in looking back, you know, of, you know, in my life, like I could never find like that tangible evidence.

, but to go a little bit further, like even just asking that question, it's a good question, but being curious about yourself and being okay with being wrong about what you believe, right? Some of the things that we have hardwired, um, those internal messages that we've, you know, been [00:27:00] handed down from our parents and loved ones who, you know, most of the time didn't realize they were even doing anything wrong.

Sometimes those messages are wrong. Some of the things that we believe deep down in our core are actually wrong. So I actually, I lean into it now of, Hey, this thing I'm telling myself, why would I believe this? You know, not even like going, like going back and looking for the evidence as to why it's not true, but like, why would I believe this?

Why? Why is this something that I would hold onto? Why is this a truth that I think is real? And just being okay with being wrong and changing that. So I think that was probably one of the things that changed my life was really letting my ego go. I don't have to be right all the time unless I was arguing with my wife, then I always had to be right.

But you know, I'm just kidding there. , um, just being okay with being wrong. It really is like ama this amazing [00:28:00] release of This thing I believe might not be true. And when you just say it that way, then you start looking at what else could be true. And a lot of times that completely changes the story and rewrites it in a way that you really had no idea.

It was gonna come about. And I think, you know, my life, it's been a series of those rewrites that has led me to, you know, being 40, 43, the happiest, healthiest I've ever been in my entire life. And it's because of all these rewrites, because I was looking for evidence in the past. And examining my beliefs and being okay with wrong, being wrong and changing my opinion.

Right. You can change your mind. You don't have to be tomorrow. What you were yesterday.

Lunden: Yes. Yes. Snaps. I love, um, just, yeah, hearing a lot of this, I think it's so, it's so important because. [00:29:00] Until I had that awareness, you don't have the awareness. So my hope for this episode is that people will just be able to like stop and freeze frame and be like, okay, what did I just say?

Where's the evidence? Like you mentioned, is it true? Could something else be possible if that's not true? And I think, um, this reminds me of. You know, in when I, where I started in fitness and even in life coaching in N L P too, oftentimes people have a long list of how they don't wanna feel. Like I call myself a loser, but I don't wanna be that, and I don't wanna be that.

And I often will ask like, okay, well then how do you wanna feel if you know, you don't wanna be that? How do you wanna feel? And so I work a lot with like core values or a personal honor code with myself and with clients because it's like, If you know the whole whopping list of all that you don't want, let's get clear about what you do want.

Let's create your rules to your game to live by so that you can wake up being like, yeah, that's who I wanna be, and I'm living in alignment with who I say I wanna be. And um, so core values. [00:30:00] Have been really powerful tool in my life. I take 'em with me everywhere I go. I like look at them regularly. I consult them if like something is that right for me?

I'm not sure, well, is it an alignment with my core values and who I wanna be and who I'm, you know, um, working to become? Do you guys do something like that? Do you have specific core values that you live by that are like your code of honor or something like that? Cause I find that so important and also, I hold myself very accountable to that, despite being the one that created it.

Right? Sometimes we think like, oh, we need a coach or something outside of us to hold us accountable, but I feel very accountable to how I do wanna feel every day. Do you guys have that?

Zach: I do. Yeah. Um, I, all I keep thinking about is like manifesting what I want. , This started probably about a year and a half ago, two years ago, where, , I, I was reading some Joe Dispenza work and like he just talked about like, you know, if you want a change in your life, like it's okay to list it out, but like [00:31:00] really putting out there like how you're gonna feel with the change.

Right. Like you were talking about, like, I, I don't want to be a loser. I don't want this, I don't want this. Focusing on how you're gonna. With a change that you want, like, that was, that was a game changer for me because whether it's the universe or my subconscious, those things started happening for me and in my life. Like I, um, and being vulnerable about who I am and like the struggles that I'm going through, coaches just naturally appeared. I would say I'm struggling with X and a coach who could help me with X just showed up.

So for me, like I just get really, really clear. I go, I go deep inside finding out what it is. I. and how I want to feel when I get it, and how I think I'm gonna feel. And it just starts showing up. Like again, it, it, it's an amazing thing for me and I know that there's a contribution that I have to make to it, but, uh, you know, I believe it's kind of, you know, putting it out there to the universe and [00:32:00] all the stars align and it just comes to me.

Mm-hmm. .

Lunden: Mm-hmm. and not waiting for the feeling. Or like for the experience to happen, to have the feeling. And I love the work of Dr. Joe Dispenza, so it's like, okay, how do you wanna feel? How are you going to feel when X, Y, or Z happens? Okay, let's practice feeling that now ahead of the experience. And I think that's probably one of the most miraculous things that we can do.

Or else we're always giving our power away, always waiting for, you know, this to be paid off or this to happen, or this person to do this type. Like it's like how. Feel and practice feeling that way now. And that's been the most powerful magnet in my life too. It's just, I remember moving back from Austria a couple years ago, um, yeah, starting everything from scratch, leaving all the partnerships, all the relationships.

The company I worked for for eight years. All the things, you know, sitting at, at my parents' house, in my niece's bed at my parents' house, which had like Cinderella and all the princesses on it. Sitting in there [00:33:00] being like, ER 33, this is cute. You know, like, Going on. And I remember telling myself, okay, if you don't want this, what do you want?

And how are you gonna feel it ahead of the experience? And so every day I woke up as if, even on the days I didn't want to. Right. And I like literally like, okay. And if you were this person and you were having a bad day, what would you do? Like, what is that next best step? And , A friend of mine is just cuz you mentioned Dr.

Joe, but a friend of mine lives in Nashville, Tennessee, and this week they're having an advanced follow-up retreat, um, for Dr. Joe Dispenza's retreats, which I love to do. But anyways, you, you'll do these walking meditations where you listen and you walk as if you are the being that has the thing that you're, the experience, whatever that you're going after.

And so I told him, I'm like, Hey, you might. Thousands of people bli out in your town doing walking meditations cuz I was in Cancun when we did this. I'm like, so get ready, be on the lookout for people just like walking as if they are becoming who they want to be in the moment. It's such a cool experience.

In fact, um, Dr. Joe would, Jo would joke and say that in some towns they think it's [00:34:00] like the zombie apocalypse cuz they see all these people like walking very powerfully through, you know, on the beach or on a bike path or something. What's going on. But I think that that work is so important and that also combines what I love a lot, the physical and the working out and the movement and the kinesthetic with the feeling where it's like sometimes I don't even need to walk.

Right? I could be like in the gym, right, Zach, like seven days in a row. Just like being as if, working as if, and you get that feeling that matches with that, uh, physical movement. And I feel like that is like, yeah. So empowering. Feel like it, it helps me feel the most alive, right? Like when we can have that physical experience, that feeling, and then when it comes, it's like, oh, that feels familiar cuz I've already been feeling it.

I shared with my boyfriend the other day, I'm like, you know, I really feel when I'm in my meditations, there's not a drastic difference of this like heightened state of. You know, just love and appreciation for the moment. I don't find it as drastic, like I feel like I'm holding the line or [00:35:00] maintaining it in and out of meditation, and I really like, I'm proud of myself.

Like that feels good because where I was two years ago was not like that at all. And so just, yeah, walking as if being as if, and that feeling before the outcome. Is so powerful cuz it's like, if not you can just get really stuck in where you might be in the moment and I'm a loser, I'm this, it's like, no, I can flip that script and rewrite it a little bit.

And so acting as if and being it, um, ahead of, you know, the actual or feeling it ahead of the actual experience, um, totally lights me up. Totally lights me up. Yep.

Jeremy: There's a couple things I wanna say about that. One is, it was actually our conversation with you on our hundred and ninth episode where you said you, again, it's, it's one of those things you kind of hear and it sort of makes sense, but then somebody says that at the right time, in the right way, and all of a sudden it becomes a part of who you are as a, as a, as a being.

And you were describing just that when you imagine the person you [00:36:00] want to become and what are the things that they do in their life to be that person every day? Do they walk? You literally said, Do they walk by the pile of laundry and let it be there? Or do they throw in a load because they're, they're the kind of person who gets things done.

Something about the way that you made that analogy totally changed my perspective, and I was just like that. I get that now. Like, okay, imagine. And then what would that person do? I don't know. I'm not that person. But I know that person wouldn't walk by a pile of laundry and leave it there. That person wouldn't just throw their dishes in the sink.

That person wouldn't let you know the, the cat hair ball up on the floor. They would do something about it. They would not wait for mommy to show up and vacuum the house for them. They would take control of their lives and they would live it. And so literally our conversation with you helped open that door for me in, in ways that I had not expected prior, prior to our interview.

Um, but I also wanna say on, on the idea of manifestation. I, this last year has been very much that manifesting this life that I'm now living. Literally up until the last few weeks, I was putting those [00:37:00] same practices, uh, into place. And it was funny because, you know, again, Zach was sort of opening the door to some Dr.

Joe's stuff for me. And this whole idea of leading with the feeling and all that. And, and I was in a situation where I, you know, I needed to do something about income, like more needed to be coming in that was going out. It was, it was getting a little, uh, dicey for a while. And so I wrote out the map, meditated on the, here's how I'm gonna feel, and this is gonna be amazing.

And this job landed in my inbox, Hey, we're looking for somebody. This, it could not have described me better. I applied for the job and I didn't get it. And I thought, well, that's a bunch of nonsense. I'm never doing that again. What a bunch of hooey. And then I panicked and jumped onto LinkedIn and reached out to every network person I could find, and ended up finding another job that I got like literally like three days later.

And it wasn't a lot, but it was enough to at least, you know, keep the lights on for a while. Right? And then now a few months goes by and that job that I had [00:38:00] initially wanted and didn't get, I'm now doing and. I just wanna sort of stress that anybody who's like sort of experimenting with this manifestation stuff go back to the part where I said like, there's no timeline here.

Like, don't expect it to happen next week. Don't expect it to happen next month. Like, it will come, it will come when you need it, right? Like there's, there's a, there's a line from the U2 song, beautiful Day, what you don't have, you don't need it now. Like, that has gotten me through the last few months.

Like nothing has in so long. Just this idea that because I don't have it, means I don't need it. And that's okay. I can let go and just sort of, you know, let go, let go of the white knuckle on the steering wheel and just open my hands and receive and, and, and it'll come when it's ready. .

Lunden: Mm-hmm. . So good. And Zach, for you, what is it look like to have that feeling ahead of the experience when you're.

Like you said, also dealing with other people's [00:39:00] labels on you too. Like what is it gonna feel like when people don't see you as this guy who's just going in and outta jail, like to help people see you as the way you also wanna be seen now, right? Not everybody's gonna match you when they're used. To you or you've proven time and time again that this is who you're showing up to be, as if, how can you feel and someone you know might be in this situation where it's like, I believe it, I can feel it, but everyone around me is not seeing it now and kind of rightfully so, cuz I've given them more repetitions in this way than I have this way.

How do you keep going to chase that feeling? Um, yeah. If you know when you first started, let's say, or you first realized like, Hey, I wanna switch this.

Zach: Honestly, it was so long ago. I don't know if I can really speak directly to that other than, you know, my family telling me, , today, like, you know, these stories of, you know, we, we saw you starting to change, but we didn't believe it.

We didn't, it wasn't real. , but [00:40:00] I'm actually, , working with a guy right now who's going through a change. So he's actually in. Like the spot that you just described where he has been a certain way for so long, there's like a path of destruction behind him and he's actively, openly, , working on changing all of these things about himself.

But everyone keeps remembering, you know, the last year of, of what's going on and what's happening. So every time there's a little slip up, even though like, you know, he's making 10 steps ahead, there's one step behind and everyone just goes see, told you. So And I keep telling, you know, I keep telling him like, look, there is, there's all this stuff behind you, right?

There is a, there's a reputation whether you like it or not. There is a reputation that you have. There's a, you know, a feeling that you have given to other people. And whenever they see anything that matches what you used to do, that feeling's gonna come [00:41:00] up and you need to. You need to keep pushing forward because you will get past this and eventually that will change and that rut will change and they're gonna think differently of you.

But it's, it's just being, you know, and it's uncomfortable to think about that too, right? That. For every misstep that you have, everyone is gonna think you're the worst case scenario that you've always been. And that's just not true. It's just their perception. And you know, I know this is easier said than done, but you need to really.

Not care what other people are thinking when you're trying to make these changes, because you are the only one who is really gonna judge you at the end of the day.

Lunden: Yes, yes. I have a, a client, I was, I, um, was working with one-on-one before and um, yeah, there was a moment where she really identified, you know, oh.

I [00:42:00] really care what other people think. And a lot of people know that I'm just always the person that's gonna say yes and do the thing and all of that. And she had this moment where she said no, and it was very um, Yeah, a very big impact in her life because for so long people were just used to the yes, the yes, the yes, the yes story.

And she was like, honestly, I don't, this is for me. Like, I don't, I wanna, you know, say no, cuz I realize I can't, I can't not, uh, stand up for who I wanna be anymore, regardless of if people are used to me being, you know, this particular way. And it was just, yeah, such a beautiful moment where she realized like, hey, It more, it kind of matters more what I think of me by setting this boundary more than it does of, you know, what others might think or say.

And it'll be okay because you know I'm okay because I know that's who I wanna be. And so it was such a cool situation [00:43:00] and a cool moment because. Yeah, there's times where we have that recognition and it's like, oh yeah, well I've given them a lot of yeses, so of course there's gonna be evidence for more and more yeses.

But if I'm really getting to, um, yeah, be true to me, no is really what I want here. And so she had that moment where she's like, yeah, I still care what other people think, but I still can say no despite that. And so when you said that, I care what other people think, or I'm worried about what they might think.

What I worked with her to craft was like, okay, you might not be able to say right now. Oh, I don't care at all what other people think. Right? Like, you might not be there yet. So what we were working on was just saying, you know what, like thinking about, okay, what am I saying?

I'm saying I care so much what people think. Okay. What's like the next believable statement? And so for her it was like, I'm working on being a. Okay with what others might think about me. And so that was like her next believable, like bite size rewrite for that particular limiting [00:44:00] belief or like particular area she felt stuck in.

And I was like, cool, can you believe? Do you believe that? Can you get on board with it? And she's like, yeah. And I'm like, can you get on board with, I don't care what anybody thinks at all. She's like, Nah. I'm like, yeah, okay, cool. Let's take that breadcrumb and let's make it like the next most believable thing.

And so I find that's been, um, really helpful too in the rewrite. It's like we might not be going from, Hey, I'm not enough to, I am enough. I am everything. I am all I need. Right? We might not believe that quite yet, even though I think saying that to yourself before you believe it in the mirror is super helpful.

But crafting those. Believable stories to help our brain, um, get on board with the fact that like, hey, we can change. It's just gonna take some repetition, some progressions, kind of like a workout, and then we can get to a space of believing in who we now are. So I think that is really what we talked about today here on this episode.

And I just, I really, um, yeah, I appreciate the conversation, you guys. I feel like I could just sit and hang and talk for a long time. .

Jeremy: Definitely. Yeah. Thank you. This is, this [00:45:00] so much fun and uh, so glad we got to do this. Thank you so much for the opportunity.

Lunden: Yeah, and let us know where we can connect with you guys.

I'll put it all in the show notes and everything, but for those listening, how can we get more from the Fit Mess guys?

Jeremy: Uh, you can find everything you We are, uh, at Fit Mess Guys on uh, every social platform that you know we care to participate on. Uh, but if you want to hear the interview that we did with you where we were on the other side of the microphone, that was episode 109 of the fit, so you can find that really easily.

By going to the fit 1 0 9 and that'll take you right there and uh, we can keep the conversation going back in time. .

Lunden: Right, and a little reverse conversation. I should go back and listen. I just remember feeling. Yeah, just like how I feel now. Very. It's cool to be able to have conversations and sometimes.

Just sharing experiences and not always needing there to be like a right answer or this, it's just like, Hey, here's where we're at. Here's what we're going through and here's what it means for us. And so, uh, I appreciate what you guys are doing. I think it's so powerful. Thank you [00:46:00] guys for listening. Thank you for being here.

Go listen to the Fit Mess Guys show. I'll put all the links as well that, uh, Jeremy mentioned in the show notes. And thank you guys so much for being here. Thanks for having us. Thank you.

There, you have it. Our appearance on self love and sweat, the podcast hosted by London Sousa. You can learn more about her, her show and her work in the show notes for this That is also where you can sign up for our newsletter and get exclusive bonus content that we do not post in every episode of our show.

As well as additional insights on all the topics covered in the show. Thank you so much for listening. We'll be back next week with a brand new See you then. [00:47:00]

Lunden SouzaProfile Photo

Lunden Souza

Life Coach

Lunden Souza is a Fitness & Lifestyle Transformation Coach obsessed with helping high performing women get their mind right, body tight and love their life!