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Ask most people what their end goal is for life, and they’ll say either happiness or freedom. And here is where your problems begin:

Happiness and freedom are the fuel to drive your car to an actualized, blissful life. Not the end destination. When you start with happiness and freedom, your emotional baggage fades from the background of your life and becomes nonexistent. In fact, your haunted past will feel like it happened to another person — and you just have access to their memory banks.

This process opens up a world of possibilities, opportunities, and yes, miracles. But you have to know how to access it.

In this episode, my former student, Tucker, joins me again to reveal how to start with freedom and happiness. And how your life will get better every single day once you do.

Listen now.

Show Highlights Include

  • The “Happiness Starting Line” secret for feeling joy pulse through every cell of your body (2:08)
  • The profound way to erase your addictions simply by saying yes (5:23)
  • How to prevent yourself from blowing up in people’s faces (even on lousy, stress-filled days) (9:51)
  • The 5-second mindset shift which stops you from freaking out or reverting to old habits when you’re stressed (10:51)
  • Why “resisting” your addictions drains your energy and leads you back into them (and the easier way to ditch them for good) (15:09)
  • How religion-induced guilt and shame around sexual addictions actually create more suffering and addiction inside you (23:14)
  • Why research shows that beating yourself up about your problems perpetuates them instead of fixes them (27:09)
  • How to completely overwhelm yourself with happiness by doing simple little things like listening to music (36:40)

If you want to radically change how much control you have over your emotions in as little as 20 days, you can go to https://thefreedomspecialist.com/feelbetternow and sign up for the Choose Your Own Emotion course.

If you or somebody you know is looking to drop the ‘F’ Bomb of freedom in your life and break free from addiction, depression, anxiety or anything that’s making you feel flat-out stuck, head over to https://thefreedomspecialist.com/ and book a call where we can look at your unique situation and give you the roadmap you’ve been missing.

If you’d like to buy a copy of my book, Is That Even Possible?: The Nuts and Bolts of Energy Healing for the Curious, Wary, and Totally Bewildered, you can find it on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/That-Even-Possible-Healing-Bewildered/dp/1512336041

Read Full Transcript

It's time to rip the cover off what really works to ditch addiction, depression, anger, anxiety, and all other kinds of human suffering. No, not sobriety. We're talking the F word here. Freedom. We'll share straight from the trenches. What we've learned from leaving our own addictions behind and coaching hundreds of others to do the same. And since it's such a heavy topic, we might as well have a good time while we're at it.

(00:35): All right. We're back again with Tucker and, uh, we're here to talk about stages of freedom. Right? So last week we particularly talked about OCD, bipolar, all of a sort of gray line sort of midline areas that are, is it medical? Is it psychological? Um, and I do think an important point to note that we didn't bring up last week is that in all the really old traditional healing methodology, there really wasn't a thing such as psychology. Psychology is really a, mostly a Western phenomenon. People will talk about your thought processes and things like that in various traditions, but ultimately none of those are important. We're not gonna spend too much time talking about 'em. The only reason we're gonna talk is to get you to do something. And then they would put you through processes like many of the ones that, uh, I've adapted or used over the years and brought into the retreat space and everything else that those processes shift the internal chemistry shift the balance.

(01:28): And then we can talk if we need to talk and see something a little bit different. And so the reason that there's a gray line there is cuz mind and body re your body is your mind. There's no way around that you have neurons everywhere in the body. So your finger moving that is a neuron firing and a neuron firing is a thought in a sense. And so we're working with your thoughts. Every thought you have creates muscular movement. And so if we start working with the body itself, the mind then starts to, to settle down a little bit, the chattering monkey of the mind as the Zen people would call it. So we talked a little bit about that. We talked about like some of the changes that happened in the first couple of weeks. And what I want to kind of focus on this week is this notion like a lot of people have happiness or freedom as like the end goal of all of the things in their life. The goal is to be happy. And I wanna flip the tables a little bit and I wanna offer the suggestion right at the beginning that happiness is the starting line. The freedom is the starting line. All of the research points to the human body functions at its peak under conditions of happiness, which means that, you know, like let's talk about a seed for a second. If I take a seed and I plant it in the ground, the seed functions at its peak peak, under optimal conditions of water and sunlight and soil and good nutrients in the soil. If I take those away, I will never see the seed blossom or it'll blossom and then die, which means that I won't get to see the full range of what that seed is capable of. And I would suggest that that's the same thing happening in human life.

(02:59): Anybody that's saying, you know, at the end of life, we're trying this to do this, to be happy is missing the point. Your happiness is the fuel out of which you get to bloom. And so considering freedom and considering happiness instead of as an end goal, but rather as the starting point, which is why we start our program with two zero own emotion so that then you can go create and experience a huge life. That's really what I wanna turn the tables to. And that means you're gonna see stages of blossoming stages of freedom, more and more happening instead of, well, I made it to the end, then there's no more point in life cuz I did what I came to do kind of thing. And so I wanna talk about Tucker's stages and then, you know, we can extrapolate a little further in terms of stages and what we've seen with some other people as well, so that you guys can paint a picture for yourself of, oh no, it's not stages toward happiness and freedom. It's like stages of life that get to occur as I become as like I'm nourished by happiness. Right? So we started with, oh wow. Um, I kind of see what's at the bottom of things. I've got some clarity of thinking and my emotions aren't run and wild and my thoughts are actually stopping from time to time. That was first, right?

(04:12): Yeah. That was first. It was the found the found the foundation. Sorry. and so, so then what happened? So a couple weeks ago in that starts to happen, then what happened in the next month or two? Like what did you start seeing happen? So at first we talked about how the OCD subsided, how I was able to have better clarity in my thinking, uh, then the evolution of that started to kinda bleed into my marriage and into my relationships and going from someone that I felt like looking back was very impatient and intolerant of like anything, um, meaning kids making too much noise, um, wife and I not getting along or communicating in a way that felt like was effective spending time, doing things that I felt like were just a time waste being upset at work or with my, my professional responsibilities. Um, and even at the time, this was just around the time that I was finishing up my graduate program. Um, just being frustrated with some of the things that I had chosen to do to do on an academic level. And so I went from this space of really negative thinking and having a lot of disconnect and just lack of harmony in, in my relationships too.

(05:23): I actually wanna be a part of this family and I want to show up in a way that's not only beneficial for myself, but really beneficial for my kids and for my wife. And what that looked like for me was taking the time to go out and spend time with them. That was like the first thing when I was dealing with pornography, when I was dealing with all of the mental health garbage that I was going through. One of the things that I did most frequently was isolate myself. I'm not gonna spend time with my family. Um, my wife can attest to the fact that for probably the first five years of our marriage, the things she wanted to do, the things she wanted to go out and participate in the family, she wanted to go visit the friends she wanted to spend time with.

(05:59): I was not on board with, it was all about me, my time doing what I wanted to do, which all too often was nothing. And just sitting alone by myself. Um, so that, that started to change. I was just open to the possibility of saying yes. So I started saying, yes, let's go out and do this. And so I got to learn for the first time in my life that yeah, some of the things that my wife wanted to do, I in fact, actually didn't want to do, but there were things that I did. Uh, I started to have better relationships, not only with my family, but with friends, people that I had disconnected with because of the time that I spent in the negative head space, the time that I'd spent looking at pornography, uh, and really just kind of avoiding life is now an open possibility. And so instead of just looking at everything and saying, no, I don't want to be a part of that. It was, I get to test that out, see what's there. If I like it, great, I'll participate in it more. Maybe that'll change down the road. If I don't like it, I'm just gonna walk away from it. But it was the option to actually do that. It was now a choice. It was something that I got to choose to do rather than just, I'm completely opposed to this. Or I'm completely open to everything kind of in that middle of like, oh, this is actually something that I could decide to do.

(07:06): So if we look at that, like, okay, cool. When you're in, whatever struggle that you're in, you you're really dealing with all of the life energy you have is being drained by this one thing. So you don't really have the energy to do anything else to think about anything else to say yes to anything else to pack that the kids to get in the car to, to answer questions that you don't wanna have asked to you to like, whatever else. Right? So the energy is all off. So all of a sudden happy, like we're doing some simple things, happiness and clarity start to show up. And that means that there's not so much energy leak. Right. Which means that the desire to reengage with life naturally starts to show up. And that's what you started to see.

(07:46): Yeah. And I mean, it a really solid example of this for me personally, this past week kind of fast forwarding a couple years to, to kind of the, now had the opportunity to go out for the day and go paddle boarding and spend some time my sister's property, a beautiful pond kind of in the center of their community. And for about three hours out on the water, I was sitting there thinking about how I wanted this for myself. Why can't this be mine? Why can't I wake up to this every morning and come out and go swimming on the pond? Just kind of like angsty and just irritated, like, oh, you know, people get these nice things and I don't get that probably to your listeners and sound really petty. But for me it was like this big thing, like why isn't this mine? And it was this Dawn realization, probably three and a half hours in as I was on the paddle board thinking I spent this whole time doing the thing that I'm complaining about not having access to, but I've had access to.

(08:40): And instead of enjoying it as it's been happening, I've been thinking about when I won't have access to it anymore. And it completely just no longer made any sense in my mind. And I enjoyed the rest of the afternoon. Now that's not something I could say. I would've been able to process or handle even just a couple years ago, even after I had started working with Bob, there was still a lot of, oh, life's not fair. I wish I had it this way. I wish things would go more my way. This is how I wish life would look. And even out of that has evolved this space of situation by situation moment, by moment, what's happening right now. And again, getting to choose not only how I respond to things emotionally, but also not being reactive. I think for me, one of the biggest things that I learned early on, and this is something that I share with anyone that I have the opportunity to work with is this idea of removing the reactivity, creating space.

(09:29): So especially with pornography, oftentimes I looked at it as like, okay, something happens and boom, all of a sudden I've gone to pornography or something's happened. And all of a sudden I'm binge watching Netflix or spending too much time on social media or C cramming my face full of junk food. I mean, am I worst and kind go back to the mental health stuff. I was eating two, two king sized candy bars in a red bull every day. That was like my, my main meal. And so something would happen and then I'm in that space. And then I'm feeling really crappy about everything, um, externally and internally now, because of all the garbage I've put in in my body. And it always felt like something happens in boom I'm right there where I don't want to be after I started working with Bob. And, and this is kind of the evolution I want to explain a little bit more in depth is that space space between trigger and reaction between stimulus and response.

(10:18): That's what started to grow. Something happens that would normally put me in a negative emotional space. Something happens that would normally send me reeling and back to pornography or to other unhelpful habits and all of a sudden something's happening and I'm breathing. And that breathing gives me 30 seconds and the next date gives me 90 seconds. And then it gives me five minutes to start to decide, to choose, to do something different so that I'm not just feeling like I'm being led back to the same place, the same thing again and again and again, that for me is the embodiment of probably the best part of everything that I've experienced here is just increasing time. My kid does something to annoy me or they're freaking out and all of a sudden I'm freaking out and I'm yelling or I'm upset now it's my kids freaking out, oh, I'm taking a breath.

(11:05): Okay. This isn't as big of a deal. As I thought it was, I'm not exacerbating the issue. I'm not making it worse. I'm not now frustrating. My wife and now the whole household feels like it's gonna explode because I took just five seconds to stop, to breathe, to check my posture, to relax my shoulders, to lift my head. And so that piece for me is probably the biggest is just creating space and little by little, that space started to grow to where I was less reactive. And I could actually think about how I wanted to respond to life into the situations that I was encountering.

(11:38): So, um, you know, in neuroscience there's been a large debate in among neuroscientists about whether or not people actually have choice, you know, free will and, and philosophers from time immemorial, right? Are we just robots, you know, living out a story or not. And I don't think it'll ever, ever be settled. People have long standing views about things and beliefs about it. And, and then they tend to find evidence for what they believe in, but what they did find, I think back in the 1960s was there was an experiment where they were trying to figure out like, okay, cool. What is the sequence of events that, that leads to an action? And, and the assumption at the time was, well, they're gonna feel a desire. And then there will be a buildup of activity in the nerve, and then eventually the nerve will fire, right?

(12:21): And so they hooked some people up and they had them do a simple task if they were going to, um, press a button a or B, but in order to be able to measure when they felt the desire, they said, okay, cool. When you feel the urge to push the button, look at a certain point. I think it was the clock on the wall. And so that was the only other element that they added. So here we are, we have a group of people, their job is push a button and they, but right, when you feel the urge to push whichever button, it is right when you've made that decision, uh, look up at the clock, right? And what they found was that neurologically there was a buildup of activity in the nerve, and then they felt the urge and then they pushed the button, which means that as I've been telling people for way too long there, that your body is always in response to the environment, it is the moon changes.

(13:11): The tide goes up in the planet. What makes you think the blood and fluids inside your system aren't affected, right? Your body is in a constant dance with the entire cosmos. And so then what happens is this buildup of activity in the system, which is just a, a natural habitual response learned response. And you don't have to have a nervous system to have a learned response. See slugs can learn to avoid electric shock. We've discovered who came up with that, uh, stupid experiment. Let's go shock sea slugs, man humans. The Holocaust of our, our scientific journey is, oh, anyway. So you can learn your body has these habitual responses, but in the space between the buildup called an action potential and the release of the actual nervous system energy that will create the action is that's when the urge is felt and that's where a new decision can be made.

(14:03): And that seems to be rooted in the number of neurons you have in your neocortex. And since humans have billions more neurons in their neocortex than any other animal that we've studied so far on the order of like we have around 16 billion in the neocortex, uh, apes, orangutan, or, and whales have like eight or 9 billion. And so they have all these similar behaviors as humans, just not quite as developed in, in the way we do. If songbirds could have bodies as big as humans, they would have more neurons in their neocortex cuz of the way that their neurons are set up. So if there were Eagles as big as men, then they would be way smarter than we are. the point is to, to that extent, we have a choice and the choice isn't stop. It's not, oh, don't do this. It's there's energy here. What do I wanna do with this energy? So you're talking about you, you created a space. What you did was take the energy of that action potential and use it to do something breathing wise, which actually built your system. It gave you more energy and then you would relax. You would relax your pause. So you're using the energy of that action potential to actually enhance your system. And then that puts you in a, a clearer space to make a decision.

(15:09): Yeah. And I think it really changed from a point of resistance, like, okay, all of a sudden, there's this urge or desire where I feel like there's this urge or desire, and now I have to resist. This is wrong. This is bad. All of the background noise, all of the, the baggage that I'd carried with me, okay, why can't I do this? This isn't something I should be doing. If I do this, it means I'm a bad person. It means I'm a bad husband or a bad father. It means I'm weak. Right? All of those things that I think tie back into the conversation around the root issue, all of that being there, and I have to resist this and now all of a sudden I'm resisting this thing and I'm still focused on the thing itself. Even if it's now in the framework of resisting the thing, I'm still thinking about the thing and now I'm fixated on it and now I'm back to it again. And I'm gonna give in because if I don't give in, then I can't get on with my day either I have to start my morning by going to pornography or an energy drink just to get up and get going or going through Facebook at least five times through the same, you know, through the same feed over and over again. And then I can get out of bed, right. Just to get going, uh, that kind of mentality toward this thing, because if I resist, then it's just going to eat at it all day. And so many of the clients that I've worked with have kind of, well, it just started in the morning and then it continued until lunch. And then from lunch until work was over. And then from work to when I got home and I resisted and I resisted and I kept fighting those urges.

(16:30): And then when I got home, I finally just caved and gave in. Right. So that piece, the resistance piece, replacing it. However you wanna say that of, of changing and breathing and introducing something new into that environment and creating that space or having that space opened up and expanded. I didn't have to resist anymore. I just did something differently. And then the desire itself went away. It wasn't always that simple. Sometimes it took more breathing. Sometimes it took breathing and a combination of something else. But because I could go to the breathwork initially it gave me 10 seconds to think, oh, I'm gonna go out for a walk and I'm gonna do some more breathing or I'm going to go on, I'm gonna do some quiet meditation. I'm gonna go take a walk in the woods. I'm gonna get in the car. I mean, to do something different than what I would've done before breathing gave me just that time, enough time to actually make the decision to go and do something else. So sometimes it compounded sometimes it was just the breathing, but in either situation, it was enough to give me to the next place where I could make another decision.

(17:28): Yeah. And so instead of thinking resistance, think in terms of like user of energy, you're always using the energy, but most people are using the energy to create, oh, I shouldn't do this. And that creation of that is a negative experience in the human body and that builds up energy. And so then that energy comes and then you use that energy to create, oh, I, I shouldn't do this more. And so then that creates a more negative experience, which uses energy. And so you're exhausted by the end of it. One and two, you are always using your energy. What you call an urge is just the, I mean the word N energy, it's just literally an urge inside, right? It's the sense of a push towards something. That's all that it is. It's just a sensation in the body and you're always using that energy. And then the question is where do we use it? So what we work on is helping people get that space so that they can start to do that. So the first couple months that starts to happen. How long did it take before you felt like, oh, either like you, well, okay. So how long did it take before pornography? Wasn't an issue

(18:31): That, that from the outset, I mean, like pornography came up occasionally, um, but never in the way where it felt like it was outside of my control. I mean, there's a few times where man, this is really hard and I, maybe I'm not getting it the way that I should be getting it. That's usually when I would go into this really like negative overwhelming Headspace, but after probably three months, three to four months, it finally started feeling like this is something that I could go and do. I'm choosing not to go and do it. That level of freedom really started to settle in probably half a year to a year after I started your process. And it was in some conversations with my wife where I no longer felt like not just with pornography, but a lot of the other habits that I'd picked up along the way were no longer controlling me.

(19:17): It was like, oh, I could go stuff my face with junk food. I could go and look at pornography, but it was the awareness around why I was choosing not to that really created the longevity really made this stick. And what I mean by that is eventually got to the point where I cleared out a lot of the, the religious background behind this being morally wrong. I had to do that to walk away from a lot of the guilt and shame that really was just making things worse for me. And when I was able to kind of disconnect pornography from a moral or even spiritual deficiency inside of myself, that's when I really started to look at, if I'm not looking at it this way, then what really is the problem with pornography? And the light bulb moment here in this situation was how is it impacting my relationships in the present?

(20:05): How is it impacting my relationship with my wife? How is it showing up in my relationship with my kids? Am I being an asshole? Am I, am I doing things in a certain way? Because I've looked at pornography, that's making life not only miserable for myself, but miserable for the people around me and in effect, just making things really crappy and heavy. And so I started looking at the real time, present consequences of the decisions and choices that I was making. And I started kind of throwing that umbrella over a lot of the decisions and choices, not just with pornography, but when I do this, do I feel better? Do I feel happier? Do I feel more content? Do I feel envious? Do I feel jealous? Do I feel like I want to go do other worse things? Do I feel like I want to be with my family? Do I wanna take care of them? Do I wanna take care of my responsibilities? Do I wanna show up, uh, professionally? And those questions started coming up. And so it was the real life in your face situations and circumstances that it really became clear. Like if I go and look at pornography or I engage in these certain types of behaviors, even without that moral, spiritual, religious context, actually doesn't really make me feel a whole lot better. And in fact, it complicates a lot of what's going on in my life complications that I don't actually feel like I want. And so that gave me the longevity to really start to stick with this is not how I wanna live and some of the choose to do something else. And again, going back to that whole idea, I felt like I now had a choice

(21:25): If you or someone, you know, is looking to drop the FBO of freedom in their life, whether that's from past trauma, depression, anxiety, addiction, or any other host of emotional and personal struggles, but they just don't know how or want some help doing it. Head on over to the freedom specialist.com/feel better now and check out some of the things we've got in store for you, or book a call. So we can look at your unique situation and get you the help that you're looking for. So there's two things here to bring up one. The first is at this point, you're like, oh, okay, so he's almost free. No, no. Remember we started at the beginning with, as you are working on nourishing your own happiness, then the blossoming starts to happen. So the blossoming of greater levels of freedom was happening all along. It's not that he wasn't feeling happy. It's not that he didn't have like tremendous moments of freedom along the way. Uh, and more and more bigger spans of it. It's it's and on the way to some journey it's that like he was already experiencing and nourishing the freedom. And as a result of the more he nourished his happiness, the more these other changes started to happen there wasn't a conscious, okay. Now the next thing I need to do is focus on the real life. Present moment consequences, cuz everything he's describing.

(22:43): If you've noticed, they're like all of a sudden it real, I, it dawned on me this that wasn't a, we don't Dawn people. people. We, we don't do that, right? That we work on your biology. We work on your physiology. We work on the building blocks out of which the byproducts come, which are your thought processes. And we talked about that a little while ago on a podcast. So if you wanna go back and look at those ones on, on byproducts and building blocks or something like that, the second thing to bring up here is the notion of religious guilt to chain. Now this is a heavy topic for a lot of people because they, they come, especially when they're dealing with pornography and sexual, a addiction itself, addiction in general has CR has just maintained a lot of religious overtones. Most of the other things, people don't think that there's something morally wrong with them for having depression or anxiety or OCD or something like that.

(23:37): They might feel like they're broken. They might feel like there's something wrong with them as a being, but not, not morally. The religious guilt and shame piece is interesting. I want you to go back to the action potential in the nerve. There's a buildup of a desire. If out of that desire, you create a series of thought processes that you were trained to create around fear around self-flagellation around beating yourself up like, oh, I'm such a bad person. Or, oh, I shouldn't be having these thoughts and stuff. What you've done is take the energy of life and create negativity and pain inside yourself. And the word Satan means accuser. So you've taken the role of Satan and used the energy of life to be an accuser for yourself on the inside. The reason you've done that is not cuz you're a bad person, but because that's the only way you knew how to control your behavior in the first place, right?

(24:24): That's how you learned. People taught you how to do it. You know, if you make fun of 'em, you know, maybe they'll shoot the basket better. Uh, if, if you, if you call 'em names or tease them, you know, maybe they'll get the point and move on. You know, if you get in their face and scream and yell at 'em, then they'll be afraid of it. And then they won't do it again. There's all kinds of ways that as human beings, we've learned to use negative emotional experiences to motivate behavior. So there's nothing wrong with that. I, I talked about that on the episode of manipulative madness, right? And so we've done that. It doesn't mean you're a bad person. That means that's how you learn to, to control your behavior. So great accept that that very process of control is creating another buildup that then you will have to go do something with, and if you never learn something else to do with it, then you are stuck in that cycle.

(25:12): So being stuck is just, I, I don't like any of the options I have to get unstuck. You don't have to kill the whole beating yourself up thing. You don't have to fix it. Just give yourself another option. Your body will naturally take the better of the two. The one that feels the best, which is why people go to addictive behaviors, let's see beat myself up or take 30 minutes, snort a line of Coke and feel great. Hmm. Rough decision. Maybe I'll beat myself up later because I don't have the money for another snort or whatever. But like, that's it. That's not, that's not what we're talking about here. Right? If you are only giving yourself two options do or don't wow. Like nobody taught you about creativity. Uh, back in the, it was a while ago they took four and five year olds and they measured them for creativity.

(25:56): They took 1600 of 'em and they measured 'em for creativity and their scores were off the charts, genius, every single one of 'em like 98% genius level cur for creativity, five years later. Now they're now 10. They measure 'em again. And they're in the 30th percentile or something around that five years later, they're now 15 and they measure 'em again. And now they're at 12% on the creativity scale. Then they took a million adults, average age 31 and measured them for creativity. Their average score was 2%, which suggests that as you grow, it's not age that kills your creativity. It's education, it's training. It's the way you've trained yourself to think that that eliminates options. And so kids tend to have more synapses, more nervous system possibilities and more connection, neural connections than adults do. Uh, they, they weed them out over a period of time.

(26:45): Whereas the Zen people would say in a beginner's mind, there are many possibilities and then experts, there are few, right? The point is it's your education. That's done it. So all we have to do is give you another option and the option we're giving you is another thing to do with the energy. So can you see how this doesn't have anything to do with religious shame and guilt? This isn't about, is it morally wrong or isn't it, this is about whether or not it's morally wrong in some absolute sense. What are you gonna do with the urge? What are you gonna do with the sensation or desire because beating yourself up about it. There is ample evidence to suggest that that itself perpetuates the problem. And that's what they've seen. Like back in 2008 in psychology today, there was an article, you know, a science stopped believing in porn addiction.

(27:30): You should do right in that article, they reviewed some of the research that indicates that the more a person has a religious belief about how bad the behavior is, the more likely they are to, to engage in it. That has nothing to do so much with belief as it does to do with the consequences of belief, which is, it's more likely that the more a person beats themself up about doing something, the more likely they are to engage in it. Right. And that can be a consequence of religious belief. And I think that that's an important distinction to make. What are you gonna do with the urge? Is the question not, oh, is it good or bad that I have it? I mean, that's real. So you wanna say more about

(28:06): That? Yes. And I think for me just kind of to wrap up that part of my experience, especially with pornography, it was the translation of this thing that I had been taught was bad pornography into I'm bad because I'm looking at this bad thing. And so it went from guilt about a behavior to this deep, deeply entrenched shame about a behavior. And for me, that was something that I've explored over the last couple of years. And I've looked at how that shaped my experience with handling pornography, how that shame and that guilt really created the situations that led me to a lot of the mental health, uh, health help that I had sought out at that time in my life and how I'm doing it differently with my kids, the way that I talk about sex and sexuality, those types of conversations, all of these things compounded by the way I was taught or the way that it was approached as, as a young kid, as I was trying to figure out life, which I'm still doing.

(29:03): Right. And, but, but in a space where it felt like there was a lot of heaviness around this thing that I was struggling with and then being told that it was bad and it was wrong. And that really, for me, was internalized as I'm this bad wrong person. And there's something really wrong with me, something specifically about pornography that shows up around religion, that some of these other things like drugs don't necessarily in this way as this spiritual and aptitude, that there's this deficiency and that I'm never gonna hit the mark, like that really came up. And that really influenced so much of what happened. Um, both in my experience of trying to handle it before I started working with Bob. And then what kind of evolved out of my experience with Bob and these new things that I was learning, uh, not only about myself, but about what was possible to me, if I could just drop that piece.

(29:54): And again, you talk about moral absolutes and, and all of that, but for me, just that the significance of that awareness of just knowing, like, if I can just look at what's happening here and now has far more impact on the choices and decisions I'm making than some possibility of future consequence or damnation. And that is what finally switched how I was showing up for myself and in my relationships in such a way where I'm here, I'm present. And although I have to remind myself to, to do that and to be that way at times, it's a very different situation when it's not added or compounded by all of this emotional baggage and what ifs might happen if I continue down this path. Yeah. And if we take that back to your core issue, right? The same thing is here, right? I'm worthless and I'll never amount to anything. The core thought process. Again, something happens in life, energy builds. And if what you do with that energy is create a thought process of I'm worthless and I'll never amount to anything or any variant on the same. Then what you've created is a negative experience in the body, which will then build up and start to spiral in a different way.

(30:56): And in, in my own experience, just to finalize one thing that I think is really important because I've seen this show up in a lot of my conversations, um, with clients, with friends, with family, with the religious side, the spiritual side, there was kind of always this drive to commit to never doing this thing. Again, I promise I'm not going to do this again. I'm committed to not doing this again. And that in and of itself was me making an infinite and measurable decision in a, in a given moment. I'm trying to define this thing. That's indefinable. I don't know where I'm gonna be in five years or 10 years or 15 years. I don't know if I'm gonna walk out the door and get hit by a bus today, right? Let alone 50 years from now, I'm gonna be this person that is not still looking at porn. And this was this huge weighty decision that didn't ever have to be made. And that's something that I think has been important in my conversations, especially with clients is you don't have to make that decision today. You need, each situation is an opportunity to choose. Uh, maybe I'm not choosing not to look at porn, I'm choosing to go get an ice cream or I'm choosing to do any infinite amount of other possibilities right now than choosing to look at porn. But it's still a choice in a moment rather than this weighty and measurable. I'm choosing this thing for the rest of my life, cuz we don't know how that's gonna go. Once I took that weight off possibilities for life and opportunities seem to really open

(32:11): Up. Yeah. And so, and that choice, that ability to make a choice comes from training your system, to take the energy of an urge and to do something that builds your system in a really powerful way. Like we teach people from the very beginning. Right. And so if so up to this point, you know, this is like a year in or so, um, you know, and it's been four years now, right? So this is a year in, you know, he's seeing changes happen as a result of consistently just three minutes a day breathing, you know, uh, do going on some walks, like finding the things that really lift him up in certain ways and, and some, some fairly consistent, simple little things in his life that have trained a system that he's not a victim to anything and that he can actually choose to do something different.

(32:55): What were, as we wrap up, like it's been four years now, right? There's a ton of stuff that has changed in your life, uh, in some really profound ways. And what are some of the surprising ones? Like things you like, you set out to go get rid of porn and get rid of maybe the anger stuff, right. And the OCD stuff or get it under handle. But it was mostly porn, uh, a couple weeks ago. Oh. Or on one of the episodes, it might, it might air after this or before. I'm not quite sure when it'll air, because we recorded 'em in a batch. We're talking about how you can't just change. One thing, like the whole thing changes you, you make one change and all of the rest of your life starts to change in adaptation to it. What are all the surprising, beautiful things that shifted for you that you never expected? What shift when you just said about to be like, okay, I'll just get rid of the porn thing.

(33:42): The first thing that comes to mind is communication. Communication with my spouse. I mean, there's been some heavy conversations about our marriage or relationship about our future that I think would've sent me spiraling in the past of, you know, what is, what is our marriage? What does that look like? What is marriage itself? And what do we see for us and our family in the future. And these sometimes heavier questions around finances and being able to provide for a family that I think even just five or six years ago, put me in a really dark place. A really dark place is like crap. Like my future is so undefinable and so uncertain and I'm scared and I'm terrified. I don't know what to do. And so going through a period of my life where, I mean, even in my education choosing six or seven different majors, and then switching back to the first one after I was no longer happy with the seventh one and, and all of these things like never being able to commit and always being terrified of what would come next, all of the, the past, the fear of past, like, I wish I would've done this, I should have done this.

(34:43): Uh, I should have done this differently, fixating on those things, those things going away so that there's no longer this fear. And even when situations are difficult, even when there are difficult conversations in my marriage and in my relations, but even when there's uncertainty around our financial future or how we're going to save for the kids or, you know, continue to provide in a way for my family that I feel like is, is meaningful. It doesn't send me into an dark place anymore. It might create questions and it might create exploration. But if I could summarize the biggest takeaway is that life is now an exploration. Uh, it's not just a black and white this way or that way. It's, there's a lot of different possibilities. And I have the privilege of being able to look at each day, each moment, each situation as a new opportunity and as a new exploration of life and what it has to offer.

(35:36): And so I think, think that's kind of, it is it's simple. And out of the initial things that I learned and went through when I started this process with Bob came some things that are very different from where I began. And some of the things that I started with are now different that I've made my own. And that's something that I think is so important for people to recognize is even if we ask you or invite you to do things a certain way, especially in the beginning, you get to take that you get to grow out of that. And that's exactly what I've done. Some of the breathing that I do now is very different from what I did initially, the walking cold water therapy nature has been such a significant aspect of my journey, the journey that I'm on now, but going back to the beginning of episode, freedom, not as a destination, but just as, as an exploration for me, is this how, how I would define it an exploration of life and one that's continually happening and so much opportunity and possibility in, in each, each day and each opportunity that presents itself.

(36:31): Yeah, The, well, I mean, we really work with each client that, that comes on with coaching, uh, for us to like really help. 'em see that freedom is unique expression. Now for you, you may, you may not have an example of this. So I'm putting you on the spot here. What are the sort of like, because we talk a lot about things going away, heavy things disappearing, and often the focus loses its capacity to see all the beautiful miracles that show up that are just like unexpected surprises. Do you have any examples of those that have happened as a Result? I think back to an experience, I think that I've shared before, probably at one of our retreats. And it was, I think it was actually at our first retreat being in a car with my family and we just were playing music and not anything different. I mean, drive with the kids in the car all the time. Music is on almost every time we get in the car, but I started singing and I started dancing and within safe bounds, cause I'm driving the vehicle and uh, and the kids are all engaged and it was like, we weren't separate and I've never really looked at it that way until talking about it now. But it was like, we were just like in the embodiment of joy of just pure and utter bliss or everything, just kind of faded to the background and not trying to use words that aren't relatable or not understandable.

(37:46): It was just like the individual part of me, the heavy part of me, the, the baggage that I'd carried around, it just kind of melted into the background. And I felt like I was a part of my kids. I felt like the family as a whole was just collectively there and just this beautiful space and it was pure presence. It was just like, this moment is all that is, and I'd heard that and I heard people talk about it still and it never really does justice to try to define it in words, but being in that space was just an embodiment of what life is. And now looking at that, what life holds as just an, an open possibility that is in a one and done experience. And so I think since that time, I haven't had a situation exactly like that, but I've been more aware of the moments where presence has played that role of there's just so much here in this moment that I tend to focus less on what has been, what might be, and really just embrace what is here now.

(38:50): So what I'll suggest, uh, you know, I've been on this road for gosh, a decade and, uh, I'll suggest this, that further on for me, what happened as I doubled down on happiness, being the fuel for the dang car, instead of the destination to get on an empty car that we had to push the whole way is, is not just that all the pornography stuff went away, not just that the anger went away, not just that this, this self-loathing and the feeling of being broken, went away. Not just that the relationships that I had with Jasmine changed or our intimacy changed, or our ability to communicate it was that like joy started springing through me, UN unask for like, it would just bounce through my system and take over. And I would just be overwhelmed with happiness, doing simple little things. And then like at a certain point, it just became clear that life was this beautiful moment happening and all the stuff in the past felt like it belonged to another person. And I just happened to have access to their memory banks. And so people ask, you know, like, how do you know if you're free? And I I've mentioned this before, like, you know, you're free when it never even arises in your consciousness. You don't think about, oh yeah, this thing I overcame, like it literally is like, oh, what? Oh yeah, oh yeah. I have access to somebody else's memories. That was the thing. It feels like it happened to another person. And, um, there instead there, it feels like I'm living a life as an entirely different being that there's no past that I have to overcome. And there's just a bunch of moments that are beautiful to explore. Have you, have you seen some of those?

(40:22): Yeah, absolutely. I feel like, especially as recently, just the small kind of subtle day to day things of the other night, driving home from the pond that I referenced earlier and it was a super moon and I remember freaking out if you've ever seen the kid and he's freaking out about the moon. I was that kid in that moment, just freaking out about the moon and how ginormous it was. My kids are in the background, laughing. My wife is sitting there laughing, and it was just this beautiful moment. And those are starting to happen without me trying to influence them. It was just spontaneous. I think you used that word. It was just a spontaneous moment where I think it just kind of melted away and it was just me in the moon and me and my family. And in that moment, just this beautiful, goofy situation turned into just now a very fun memory, not something that I fixate on, but something that, you know, I know is possible. And in the past, those situations probably were there and accessible to me all the time. I just didn't pay attention. I was so distracted with all the background noise that I didn't pay attention. I didn't notice those things. And I think if that kinda answers that question, I think that was probably a big one.

(41:32): And I, I, I like that example, cause it was just really fun. yeah. I, if you, if Tucker now, before he was super serious and like always like controlled about things and concerned about stuff and he's just a big kid and, and maybe because he didn't get a chance to be a kid for so many years, cuz he was busy, focused on other things and I've seen a lot of people do this feel like they're, they're back at their youth again. And they get to experience life just in this undiluted unmediated way and that can happen. And so, but that happens by focusing on, instead of fighting something there's nothing wrong with anybody on this planet, there's just an experience happening. And the energy of that experience is present. The action potential is there, what are you gonna do with it? You can fight it.

(42:17): You can create anxiety and problems and whatnot. Or you can take that energy and go create something that is beneficial for yourself. And as you double down on that, then all of a sudden it grows in your life and your life becomes something unrecognizable. And so, um, obviously I've built programs. We've talked to you about these a lot, come to a retreat. Honestly it is the fastest way I know of to address all the parts of your system, the unconscious ones, the biological cellular ones, the nervous system ones, the thought processes and all the other stuff associated with it, all the stuff and support we give around those retreats so that you know that several months of support there so that you just get a chance to like make a change, change direction and the fastest way to get your body, to take the energy of all that old stuff. And instead of fighting it, turn all of that prodigious energy and you know, it's a lot of energy into creating something new. It's there, the possibilities there and you just gotta take the, take the step to do it. And that's it for today's alive and free podcast. If you enjoyed this show and want some more freedom bombs landing in your earbuds, subscribe right now at wherever you get your podcast from. And while you're at it, give us a rating and a review. It'll help us keep delivering great stuff to you. Plus it's just nice to be nice.

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