#52 – Shawn Stevenson: Become the Strongest Version of Yourself, Part 2

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Episode Summary

Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life with Krisstina Wise. This episode is a continuation of last week’s show with Shawn Stevenson, who healed himself from an ‘incurable’ disease. Shawn does some myth busting on today’s show, as well as explains why the body needs melatonin to help it recover. Did you know nurses who worked the night shift ended up having a 30% increase in incidents of breast cancer? Yes! Shawn explains why you should not be sacrificing your sleep and fueling your body with junk food.

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You can also click on the time stamps below to jump to those specific points in the conversation.

What We Covered

  • 02:30 – Traditional medicine doesn’t get to the root of the problem.
  • 04:30 – What is serotonin?
  • 06:50 – What is melatonin?
  • 09:00 – The gut actually tells your brain what to do, not the other way around.
  • 10:30 – One of Krisstina’s friends has a daughter on ADHD medicine, at the age of 10.
  • 11:00 – Take the pill or change the diet?
  • 11:30 – Nutrition and sleep are fundamental parts of your health.
  • 12:50 – Sleep is for the strong.
  • 15:15 – In a university setting, poor sleepers were more likely to drop out of college.
  • 16:30 – What happens to a sleep-deprived physician?
  • 22:10 – What’s your spine really made out of?
  • 31:15 – Shawn is a living example of what he’s preaching.
  • 31:40 – How does Shawn keep up with his lifestyle/health while he’s off traveling the world?
  • 36:00 – Discipline is about becoming a disciple of yourself.
  • 41:55 – Shawn closed his clinical practice, something he had been running for over 10 years, to focus on his podcast, writing books, and speaking at conferences.
  • 44:55 – What myths would Shawn like to bust today?

Tweetables

Links Mentioned

Shawn’s Website

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You are at the intersection of wealth, health, and happiness. Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life.

Hello, and welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life, the show about becoming wealthy without sacrificing your healthy. Each week, I interview a counter-cultural thought leader to bring you a unique millionaire mindset. I’m Krisstina Wise, bestselling author, millionaire coach, and your personal guide to money, health, and happiness.

Today, I tackle health wealth with Shawn Stevenson. Shawn is the bestselling author of Sleep Smarter, a comprehensive guide of 21 strategies to help people sleep their way toward a healthier body. Shawn is the host of the smash hit podcast, The Model Health Show, which gets millions of downloads per year and was once featured as the number 1 health podcast on iTunes.

Shawn has an amazing story. He was diagnosed with a devastating illness at the age of 20 that caused a loss of function in one of his legs. He was eventually able to make a full recovery through diet, exercise, and mindset changes. Now, he’s one of the most prominent voices in the health community. He’s gone onto become the founder of Advanced Integrative Health Alliance, a company providing health and wellness services worldwide. He’s been featured in Entrepreneur Magazine, Men’s Health, ESPN, FOX News, and many other major media outlets. As you can tell, Shawn is quite the success story. I loved this interview. I was inspired hearing about his own healing journey and how he’s turned his struggle into educating others about health wealth across the globe. I hope you enjoyed this conversation as much as I did.

This is part two of a two-part interview. So, if you miss part one, be sure to check out last week’s episode in order to catch up.

Also, one other thing even with some imbalances it’s like they’re not permanent, maybe, chemical imbalances but you take it down to like where you’re an expert is balances, imbalances happen by our diets out of whack in or sleep’s off, and these different things that we’re going. We go to the doctor, they prescribe a pill to take care of a symptom based on some diagnosis or prognosis they offer, and then we just do that forever and we’re never getting to the root of the problem. How much of the root of all of these emotional and physical issues come to your three specialties which is basically diet, fitness — I mean food fitness and sleep?

Yeah. Oh my goodness. Another person that I had a conversation with recently is Dr. Daniel Amen. He’s like the leading person in the world, he’s done more brain imaging scans, SPECT scans, looking at the human brain than any other person walking around on the planet by far. They use his research also for the movie Concussion, for example, and there are absolutely moments. When we’re having this conversation, it’s not to be ignorant to the fact that, yes, there are absolutely some spaces where there is something off with our chemical imbalance or damage to our brains. But, you can actually get in and look at that before you throw in the towel and say, “This is what I’m destined to be is this person that’s filling the blank.”

What’s so beautiful is that there’s this thing called neuroplasticity. Your brain can heal, your brain can develop, and continue to grow. Wendy Suzuki, a neuroscientist I just talked with as well – so crazy I’ve been talking with all these people about the brain recently, and we’re talking about this – but I learned from the best. There are specific parts of your brain that continue to grow and develop even as you move into your senior years where we were once believed, for many, many years, that our brains are fixed. You know, you’ve got what you got and that’s the end of the story, and it’s just not. It’s not the end of the story.

So, when we talk about these chemical imbalances, let’s drill in and talk about, specifically, like what are some of the big things we’re looking at? Well, one of the big players here specifically doing clinical work and seeing so many SSRI. Serotonin reuptake inhibitors, these were very popular, still are, very popular anti-depressant medications. What these are, essentially, their role is to make sure that you’re not metabolizing serotonin too quickly so it can kind of float around in your system a little longer.

What is serotonin anyways? Serotonin is this really powerful neurotransmitter that is known as a “feel-good” neurotransmitter. It’s an antidepressant neurotransmitter. What’s even more fascinating about it is it’s not going on in your brain. Let me explain myself. What’s been recently discovered is that over 90% of your serotonin is actually located in your gut, not your brain. So, when we get fixated on this thing of like there’s a chemical imbalance in your brain, it’s not really how it works. Most of your serotonin is in your gut tissue.

What does this say? Guess what? What my field is really, and I’ve wrote a bestselling book on sleep, but I’m a nutritionist but I’ve been studying nutrigenomics for almost ten years, and that’s how nutrition literally impacts your genetic expression, but you don’t hear that kind of stuff. That’s what happened with me. I literally turned on a program to make me a very old person when I was very young; bones breaking down, tissues deteriorating, and I was able to turn on a different genetic program for health, vitality, regeneration of tissue, greater hormonal balance, all that good stuff by consciously utilizing my nutrition.

So, with that said, if all that serotonin is in your gut tissues, guess what’s going to impact your serotonin production? Food. What you put in your gut, whether it’s a doughnut, or a bagel – or I’m just like thinking about circles right now – or a burger, whatever it is, it’s going to impact your serotonin levels, period. So, we’re looking at things the wrong way, here’s a drug for that. Well, what’s creating the underlying problem here?

Another big thing is our sleep quality. I devoted an entire chapter to this. It was fascinating to me. This was called “Fix your gut to fix your sleep”, this particular chapter, chapter 7. Researchers found – and this was crazy like blew my mind – not only is serotonin like sleep — the big hormone that people talk about with sleep quality is melatonin, right? Melatonin is a driver of sleep programs, if I could put it simply.  Melatonin, here’s what people aren’t talking about is that it’s also quite possibly our number one endogenous anti-cancer hormone as well. This is why the World Health Organization come out and said that shift work is a class 2A carcinogen. So being up at night and not having a proper day and night cycle where you’re producing melatonin at night causes cancer to the degree in this nurse’s study that I cited in the book as well. 30 nurses who worked the night shift had 30% greater incidents of cancer, breast cancer, high rates of heart disease, diabetes, you name it.

We appear again, we’re treating this the wrong way instead of addressing the underlying cost. So, melatonin, they discovered — again, fascinating. When I was in school, I was thought melatonin is produced by a pineal gland, that’s the end of the story. Well, guess what? Over 90% of your melatonin is located in your gut as well into chromaffin cells, if I remember correctly, or maybe that’s for the serotonin. Anyways, these cells in your gut that are storing and also studying, this was in pineal research and I just want to throw this out there really quickly, found that melatonin is also a very powerful fat-burning hormone. So, I’m just going to throw that out there too. They found in this journal that published the study that found that melatonin increases your body’s production of brown adipose tissue which is fat that burns fat. It’s fat that burns fat that burns white adipose tissue which is like the subcutaneous fat, like the kind of gooey stuff that we want to get rid of. Just again, if you’re not sleeping well, you’re not healing, and also you’re not burning fat at the level you could be.

So, to kind of wrap all of this up with what’s going on with the gut, with our brain function, with our health, the vagus nerve. The vagus nerve connects your brain to your gut. What scientists found was that, most of the information is your gut is telling your brain what to do and not the opposite. So, they found that 90% of the data or the information that’s traveling along your vagus nerve is from the gut to the brain. There’s a lot 90s here. Over 90% serotonin, over 90% melatonin, and 90% of that communication is from the gut to the brain.

So, what’s going on in your gut is heavily influencing your mood, it’s influencing your hormone production, because the big take-away I want everybody to have today is that the way that you feel, the way that you physically have a feeling is determined by your hormones and neurotransmitters. That’s what feelings are, as far as this chemical structure. That’s what we need to be looking at. How can we eat a hormone-healthy diet? How can we have hormone healthy movement practices? How can we make sure that we’re fortifying? I promise you, your sleep has a bigger on your hormone function than your diet and exercise combined. We could talk all about that if you’d like as well.

Well, I think the biggest takeaway here is that what we’re not — again, we’re going back to this cultural thing, take a pill versus — in fact, I’ll back up a little bit. Last night, we had some company over, some people from out of town, and we were chatting a lot of health conversation and they were asking me some questions, and one of the men was talking about his stepdaughter was just 10 was prescribed with ADHD, and she’s on medication. I mean no judgment. I’m not a doctor, but my first question was, “How much sugar was she eating? What is her diet?” That was like the big, his eyes get this big, “Well, what do you mean?” and I’m like, “Well,” I just gave him a few sugar examples, and he said, “Well a lot.”

So, I didn’t say anything because he wasn’t asking me for my advice. I just triggered a question. That same thing, like take a pill or change the diet. It’s the cultural like, “Well, I’d rather change. I’m almost rather maybe my child take the pill to take care of these behavioral issues or whatever,” versus maybe changing the diet to be less sugar- prominent or whatever.

But that’s just it, it’s behavioral, but I love this, that the gut really is responsible for the mood: the hormones, the neuros, so it goes back like nutrition is like the fundamental most important piece, one of them that’s missed, that’s completely missed because we’re just shoving any food down our throat.

Then, the other side of that, what you’re saying is that sleep is the one thing and we can talk a little bit about that now. But, it’s the first thing we give away, even those of us that, maybe, are exercising regularly and eat a pretty decent healthy diet. What do we do? We’re not sleeping. Like we’ll sacrifice to sleep to get more exercise in, or to get that last hour of work in or whatever. I think now the science is showing us like, “Oh sleep is –” there’s so many things that are happening during sleep that we do not want to sacrifice our sleep for anything.

Yeah, that’s it. We’ve become a culture of, if you’re not doing something, you’re going backwards in a weird way. You know, like you need to crush it, you need to burn the midnight oil. If you’re going to be successful, that’s the name of the game. Now, I’ve talked to many of those people who promote those things with their lifestyle: Gary Vaynerchuk, Eric Thomas, who’s like the top motivational speaker in the world. These guys, I know them. I know the real story behind what’s going on with them as well, but we’ll save that for another time.

The hashtag now needs to change is “Sleep is for the strong. Sleep is for the rich.” Because, number one, and I just want, first of all, acknowledge you for having the wherewithal, because I know it’s concerning when you hear, “Boom! Their kid is on drugs,” and it’s like, “Wow, there’s obviously an issue here,” is not preach to somebody. It’s like if they’re not asking my advice, I’m not sharing. That’s what I do. Because, what  happens, it used to be, we go to functions or whatever, even it’s like a family reunion or picnic or something I’d go, all of a sudden the whole thing revolves around Shawn. I don’t want that to happen. If somebody asks me something, I will tell them but the information is there for you to see. I mean, the research is all there, but our job is to package it up in a way that is entertaining, that’s easy to understand. I love the quote from Einstein that says, essentially that, “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t know it well enough.” So, that’s what I really pride myself on doing.

Just to go back to that point of — and so the American Academy of Sleep Medicine published a study and they found that poor sleep quality was equal to binge drinking and marijuana use in determining academic performance. So, our kids are performing on their academics, and that’s our immediate problem, like we focused on that. “You’ve got to get your grades up. You’re struggling with your focus and all this stuff. We’re going to put you on this medication.” All the while, the kids are getting to stay up at 2 o’clock in the morning playing, what is the game people play? I don’t know. Call of Duty, got it. Call of Duty 14, whatever they’re at right now, and they’re not paying attention to basic human needs.

The thing is it’s so attractive. I mean, the video games, the TV. We live in the golden age of television straight up like everything is good. I get it. I totally get it. At the same time, you have to put it in its proper place. Do you want to continue to watch people living an exceptional, interesting life on television or do you want to live that life, right? What we’re doing is we’re vicariously through these characters, and at the end of the day, you turn the TV off then you get back to whatever life you have, which for a lot of us, it’s not the place we want to be, or that we know that we’re capable of.

Bottom line is the study report, it also said that these individuals, these poor sleepers in this university setting in this study had greater incidences of getting poor grades, number one, than great sleepers and also dropping out – dropping out, giving up. There’s different degrees of giving up and dropping out, by the way, because I was in that place. Like, literally, I was going to class, but I had given up, you know. Also, I’d dropped quite a few classes. I went from a 12 or 15 credit load and then a couple of semesters throughout that struggle with my spine, I’d end up with three credits one year, or six, and just scraping by. I became a super-duper senior, the years that I was in college before I graduated. I graduated and changed everything when I got my health back on track. Not back on track. It became far better than anything I know possible.

I also don’t want people to have that language of, “I just need to get back to where I was.” No. You want to be better than you were before and that’s what you have possible for you right now. All that other stuff was just training, that was the beginning of something great. You get to learn the lesson so now you get to absolutely crush it.

One other thing I want to share in regards to sleep and the brain, there was a study, it was published in the Lancet, and this was actually done on physicians. This should be super eye-opening for people. This is a physician study. They had the physician to come in and complete a task, then they sleep-deprived him for just 24 hours, which is not that uncommon. They had have him do the same exact task, and now, second time around, after being sleep-deprived, doing the same thing, they made 20% more mistakes doing the same exact thing, and it took them 14% longer to do the same exact thing.

The context, number one, of our physicians, this being on and the sleep-deprivation that’s a chronic acceptable thing, think of all the mistakes that happened. I don’t want that mistake to happen with somebody that I care about, which is pretty much everybody. But also, understanding that we’re all doing this to ourselves. We’re making more mistakes in our lives, in our work, in our family, in our relationships because we’re sleep-deprived and we don’t know it and we also are taking longer to do that work. If you are sacrificing sleep to work on your project, crush it, build that new website, or whatever, you’re going to cause more things you got to come back and clean up.

What we’ve gotten into is a situation where we’re mistaking doing work from actually being productive. And your sleep quality is a huge determinant of that. Of course, we could do a whole show just talking about the strategies, because what I’ve done with Sleep Smarter is, first and foremost, I have to tell everybody is that it’s not necessarily about sleeping more. I’m sorry; it just isn’t.

People who’ve endorsed my book like America’s Sleep Doctor. The America’s Sleep Doctor, Dr. Michael Breus, has been on Dr. Oz like 70 times or whatever. He endorses my book, and essentially, if you look at my book, it’s the bestselling, highest-reviewed, also it’s an international bestseller because of this one thing that’s different from all the other books on sleep is that it’s absolutely loaded with solutions that are tangible. 21 clinically proven strategies to improve your sleep quality and I said quality, not sleep more, because that’s what it’s really about is making sure that your brain is going through the proper sleep cycles. You know, the beta waves are transitioning to the alpha, theta, that kind of stuff, and it’s all done by making sure that your hormones is doing what they’re supposed to do, making sure you get some exercise in the first part of the day for example.

According to Appalachian State, morning exercisers spent more time in the deepest, most anabolic stages of sleep. They had more efficient sleep cycles and a 25% greater drop in blood pressure at night, which is correlated with the parasympathetic nervous system activation, and turning off the fight-or-flight system just by getting five or ten minutes of exercise in the morning. It doesn’t mean you can’t go to the gym later in the day if that’s when you got time, but simply by doing some exercise, you can sleep better.

It’s really powerful stuff and it’s all things like that. Also, I’m big on implementation too. Now that I know that thing, what do I do? That’s a big thing I think is left out a lot in conversations with so-called experts. Some people are great at what they do, but we got to stop making this stuff so complicated that people can’t do it. They’re able to really strive for something that’s tangible that is like a visceral connection to, which I think we’ve accomplished on this show on how important some of these things are, whether it’s with improving your sleep quality or changing something with your mindset, and your perception of reality, and your association with your medical practitioners. That’s what it’s really about for me.

That’s awesome. We’re coming, I mean, I can talk to you all day long so thank you for being so generous with your time, and we’re coming close to the end of our time together. A couple of things, just to circle back, almost to where we started, are you saying that you completely reversed being practically bed-ridden by changing your diet, your sleep, and maybe reincorporating, maybe, changing the way you thought about exercise and fitness? That’s what you did to reverse that serious of an illness?

I’m so glad you brought this up because there are going to be a tremendous amount of people. I just did a talk at this Cusp Conference in Chicago, I did a talk at Gogo while I was there. How many people lined up to ask me about their back problems, or their significant other’s back problems. So many people hearing this are going to be in that same like it’s become something that’s really pervasive in our culture, but at the same time, when this happened to me back in 2000, it wasn’t as common knowledge that there is something you could do about it. I mean, they told me this was incurable back then. Now, that word isn’t used. But, that doesn’t mean that it’s easy.

So, to kind of share some of this science really quickly, when I’m talking about changing with nutrition, luckily, I was analytical enough. My first shot was I was drinking like Slimfast shakes which is, “Ew, it’s so bad. It’s so gross.” I was like freezing up, trying to do whatever I could to try to get the weight off whatever, but very misguided in my approach because I was going with popular culture like this is what I’m supposed to do.

But, you’ve heard this saying, “When a student is ready, the teacher will appear,” and the right information, right books, right websites started to show up for me because I was asking different questions. One of the questions that I asked that is hugely important for anybody dealing with any type of degeneration is that ask what is that tissue actually made of? What is my spine actually made of? So when I asked that question, I came across and eventually found out, because when you hear about bone density or bone health, what’s the first thing that you think about as far as nutrition like what’s the main mineral that you think about?

Calcium.

Calcium. Those milk moustache commercials are phenomenal at getting in your brain, and it just doesn’t work like that. It’s great marketing. There were like over 200 different compounds, and many of them were far more important than calcium. Calcium was really an end product that your bone can eventually come across. It’s called biological transmutation, not to geek out too much. But anyways, what those building blocks for your bone and your tissue are things like silica, polysaccharides, sulfur-bearing amino acids.

All of these things I started to learn about it, it’s like I was eating pizza for breakfast and like Sunny Delight, and I wasn’t giving any of that stuff in my body. So, literally, your body cannot rebuild tissues if it doesn’t have the raw materials to do so. It will do the best job it can. I came across some fascinating research then, like one of the first books that I came across, and it just blew my mind, and it said specifically that this degeneration of your spine will happen because of a deficiency in some of the nutrients that I just talked about, including calcium as well, because your body works on the hierarchy of needs. It’s going to do the most important function first.

So, it could care less about the integrity of my spine if it needs calcium to clot my blood and keep me alive. My body was so deficient in these nutrients, it’s leeching them from my spine and from my bones, specifically from my hips, and in the book, it blew my mind because it said, “It will take it from your spine and hips first.” I broke my hips already, and my spine was deteriorating to the degree they said I was an 80-year-old person inside right? So, when I started to flood my tissues with those nutrients, that was a huge, huge leverage because now I’m giving my body the materials that it needs to do the job, which it didn’t have before. So, that’s number one.

Number two, when we talk about — because a lot of people are dealing with disc degeneration, so the disc between the vertebrae and the spine. Here’s something fascinating is that your disc, they’re non-vascular. They’re non-vascular, what does that mean? This basically means that blood flow and nutrients don’t go directly to the disc. So, even though I’m talking about flooding my tissues with these nutrients, your discs are the last place to get hydration when you drink water. It’s a process called remote diffusion, to again, get a little nerdy with it. But, bottom line is you have to have so — you have to be super hydrated, you have to have so much hydration in your tissues that it can finally get to your disc. Everybody, at the end of the day, when you wake up in the morning, you’re taller than when you go to bed at night. Gravity, just the wearing of the day starts to push down on your vertebrae on your disc, and you lose that hydration, and that kind of juiciness and suppleness in your disc. That’s what they said I was chronically deficient and I was missing.

Here’s the thing. I was drinking, no joke, like maybe, maybe a glass of water a day, maybe like 12 ounces or something. I don’t know how I survived. It speaks to the resilience of the human body, and I’m not kidding. I’m not kidding. I mean, I had to be like straight-up cotton mouth thirsty to go and drink some water. I would drink like soda, Kool-Aid. My drink of choice, my wine was a Hawaiian Punch. That was my beautiful treat, my tasty treat that I would drink on. Crazy thing is all of those things leech minerals from your body for it to process. All that sugar, it takes minerals from your tissues in order for your body to process and save your ass so that you can actually live through drinking that stuff.

That was another big thing. I started to super hydrate my tissues. When it comes to movement, I’m just going to share one important nugget here, and this was a study that was done on racehorses, which if a racehorse breaks a bone it’s like grounds for the horse to be put down and that’s a loss. Potentially, millions of dollars for their owner. So, they started to do studies to find out how they can increase their bone density so that we have less rates of theses bones breaking. They had the control group that didn’t do anything different and then they had the study group. One of the study groups, they gave the horses supplements with some of the nutrients I’m talking about, and they had increase in their bone density, yes, but they found out that when the horses were given supplements and walked, their bone density increased even more. That’s the key. Exercise is not about having a six-pack or a super fit body. Those are side effects. Exercise is really about assimilation of nutrients and detoxification of metabolic waste products.

My tissues were so full of waste because of my lack of movement and mobility, this docile nature because my physician told me, “Don’t do anything. Be careful.” Your body works on that like use it or lose it basis. Guess what? Not only my spine was deteriorating, my muscles atrophied. Everything about me started to break down because I wasn’t using my body anymore. So, as soon as I started to move, in combination with consuming those high quality nutrients that my body needed, both of those things, also during the day, created more love and affection for that experience when I laid my head down at night as well, really helped with my sleep quality.

That’s what was the catalyst for my body making the transformation that it made. So, I started where I could. I didn’t just go and started lifting 400 pounds deadlift, which I could do today, spoiler alert. I just started to ride on a stationary bike because that’s what I could do at the time. It’s hard, I can’t even believe I’m saying this because of all the things that I’m doing today, but I was very embarrassed. It was hard for me to walk. Then, I began, I got on the elliptical machine, and I started to walk a little bit, then I eventually picked up the weights again. Before you knew it like, oh my goodness, it’s just I could not believe that it happened so quickly.

Everybody is different. Let me make this disclaimer. But, if you do nothing, you get nothing. You have to do what you can. When you do have that initial injury and it’s an acute situation, of course, take a day or two off and let the inflammation go down, but then you must do what you can. If it’s a back injury, if you can just go and walk for a little bit, maybe walk around a block. Just do some rehab exercises. You have to do it yourself. No one else can do your push-ups for you, that’s what is missing in this paradigm is that your physician can’t actually do the work; your body does the work. Whether it’s responding to a drug or not, your body is still doing the job.

I wanted to share those things and also with this sleep less, kind of peace years, this is when your body produces the vast majority of anabolic hormones, which anabolic means growth and development. When you’re awake, you’re in a catabolic state, your body’s breaking down. It is what it is, no matter if you’re just sitting there watching Scandal or whatever you’re watching. Your body is breaking down, and so this anabolic state is where your body produces growth hormones, for example. I needed growth hormones; I needed it so badly to grow and develop those tissues. Stem cell production, also reparative enzymes. There’s a sharp increase in repair of enzyme activity when you’re sleeping, specifically even right before you go to sleep when you’re transitioning from beta to alpha waves, that kind of thing.

All that stuff, it didn’t happen on accident. So, what I’m saying, if you’re not sleeping, you’re not healing, this is not a joke. Literally, this is when all of the magic happens from all the good stuff you do during the day. If you get that formula dialed in — and again, we could do multiple shows on all these different topics, but we’re here as a resource to show that you’ve created as a platform. Also my resources, my platform, my show, my books are all there for you to give you every tool that you need but you need to be the one to take action.

That’s so good. Just a couple more questions. This is the Wealthy Wellthy podcast and it’s the intersection of money, health, and happiness. I do a lot of health conversations, because even if we’re really ambitious, and we’re building our money, our wealth, our business, we can’t sacrifice our health for wealth. It’s really learning, part of what I’m doing is the message that we need to learn how to take care of both, and we can’t be advocating our money to planners, and we can’t be advocating our health to the docs, and to really become empowered to learn and feel empowered to build our wealth and grow our health, optimize our health.

You’re a health guy. You’re extremely successful. You have turned this into your life’s work, your passion, you’ve impacted millions of lives. Man, your energy just comes through my screen. I can’t wait to meet you in person one day. Your smile, your energy, you’ve got that great podcast voice. No wonder your podcast is like number one on iTunes. You’ve got such a good voice. But you’re a living example of what you’re preaching, what you’re teaching. So, with all this success, how do you keep all this in balance? It was question one with this. Like, how are you — there’s Gary V. I don’t know how he’s doing it. I mean, I keep waiting for the breakdown to happen. Maybe he’s an anomaly, but you know.

Part A to this question is how do you do this? How are you taking care of your sleep, and travel, and all your crazy things you’re doing as a successful entrepreneur, and speaker, and leader, and writer, and so on and so forth? So, how are you taking care of your food and how are you squeezing in your exercise as this really successful dude that’s really sacrificing a lot to make the world a better place? That’s part A and then part two is what is your money philosophy following that?

Okay, we’ll come back to the money philosophy. Actually, cool experience, Gary came on the scene as the wine library guy, and actually he had a wine tasting. I’m not a big drinker, not a big fan of wine, but I drank that day. It was definitely awesome to sit with him and to have that experience. He shared with me, in this moment, and I think this was about two years ago, this is when he made a big shift in his own health because he realized that the way he was going was not going — he’s playing the long game like he’s playing the long game, he’s got a serious ambition to buy the New York Jets, for example, and I think he’s definitely in the hundreds of millions right now as far as his net worth with his company, things like that.

But anyways, he knew his defaults. He knew the holes in his game and he’s in a position, “We either have to do it ourselves or we hire somebody who is very adept in coaching us, not doing it for us.” Some things can be done for us right, but we actually eat the meal, like somebody can make your food. He brought on a full-time trainer that traveled with him. He was paying more attention to his sleep hours and just his philosophy kind of change, just paying attention to his health. Also the food, he had to take pictures of his food and all this stuff, and stuff that I wouldn’t probably have him do, but it worked for him. It worked for him.

I just want to say that, right off the bat, these stories, they’re not what you think a lot of times, but here’s my approach and what I’ve also seen is that I’m just breaking the news. There is no balance. There just isn’t, not in your own personal life. There is a balance in the universe. There’s this if you look at the different philosophies, whether it’s yin and yang, or acid and bases, acid and alkaline, there is this balance in nature that are all working together to keep everything rolling along at a level that you cannot even imagine.

It’s so powerful to understand that, but in our own lives, we’re going to constantly experience turbulence and things being a little bit off-balanced. I love the analogy of your life being like a teeter-totter. If everything is in balance on both sides, it sucks. You’re not having any fun, nobody’s moving up or down, it’s like it’s not any fun. That imbalance keeps things interesting and it always keeps you working on a one area or another a little bit more, depending on where you are in your life right now.

There was a time when I as ferociously reading, and studying, traveling to learn about nutrition like some kind of a madman, completely out of balance with other parts like my relationship, for example. I didn’t have my youngest son yet which kind of when he got here, things changed. Kids change the structure as well, but I was definitely not the person that I am today as far as my relationship context with my kids and with my amazing wife, and I love the evolution, because being out of balance in that, it brought me back to center for a moment to focus on that more and then I just dove full into that. I have another show; it’s called “The Good Dad Project”, for example. I got more into just that experience and really embracing and loving being a father.

So, there’s always going to be something that’s getting more attention than the other thing, and that’s okay. We just have to make the decision on what is the most important to us because that’s going to get the majority of our time at different times. How I’ve been able to do all of this is I’m a very big advocate of rules and discipline, as crazy as it sounds.

The word makes you feel uncomfortable like, “I don’t want rules. I don’t want.” But, when I say discipline, the root is disciple. So, I’m a disciple of greatness; I’m a disciple of being the best. It’s becoming a disciple of yourself. That’s what your discipline is all about. What are those disciplines that lead you to the life that you really want to have? I’ve got specific rituals and disciplines that I do on a daily basis for most of them, and some things are a little bit more occasional.

But, it’s like my meditation practice or exercise. Every morning, no matter what, no matter where I am in the world, I’m going to do 5 to 10 minutes of exercise when I get up in the morning. I’m going to drink about a liter of high-quality structured water every single morning. These are things I’ve been doing for over 10 years. They’re a part of who I am, so that gives me huge leverage. With the exercise components like being able to go to the gym, or train here in my office, or whatever the case maybe, I make it easy. I’ve got a rebounder in my office, I’ve got equipment in my house, like the kettle bells and all that stuff. But, people can definitely become hoarders of fitness equipment and not use it, but it’s part of it, but we also have to trigger that internal inspiration.

Motivation can help to get there, having that daily practice of having that something that’s motivational to you. Maybe it’s this show today, or having that audio book, or that inspirational video or whatever, something that gets you in the right mental state to take action on those things every day. I think it’s critical. So, oftentimes, I’ll actually — I don’t “need it”, I’m going to do what I got to do regardless. I don’t want to love it, but because it’s a practice. So, when I’m doing that 5 to 10 minutes of exercise, I’m listening to a podcast, or I’m listening to an audio book, or something to feed my spirit. Or if I don’t happen to do that, I’m reading something personal development or something like that. So, that has to be another thing to get you to take action.

That’s how I do it all is I have specific structure and rules for my life, the way that I live my life. I have standards and I will not sacrifice those for anything or anyone. Because it’s not about — even the word “sacrifice” means to make sacred. For me, it’s a very beautiful and spiritual process. I’m not compromising my values on who I am. I’m blending. Like with my wife, of course, we’re going to have differences in opinion, all kinds of stuff. She likes Scandal, for example, and I’m more like whatever the thing I’m into. I like SportsCenter, whatever. But, we blend, we blend. We don’t have to give up the things that we love in the way that we want to be in the world. We blend, and that takes work.

I love that.

We make it happen. That’s the first part. What was the second thing?

The second is what is your money belief?

This is such a great question. Money is such a — this is what I’ve seen. I’ve seen people sacrifice their values because of money. I’ve seen people settle because of money. I’ve seen people not do the things that they want to do in their life because of money. I’ll tell you this, number one, money should never be the reason that you are not doing the things that you want to do in your life. Money should never be the reason that you give that you’re not taking action on your goals. Money, it’s a resource. It’s not everything.

There are many different things to go about being resourceful. For example, somebody came to an event – this is a great example. I just spoke for the Institute of Transformational Nutrition at their annual event in Los Angeles. Some of the students there, because it was like, I don’t know, $2,000 something to come, but some of the students got free admission because they did something. Maybe they were helping to work for the event, maybe they were, whatever it is. They were giving another way to be able to wind up being there and being present.

It doesn’t always have to be through money. Money is just a tool. But, your relationship with that tool determines a lot in your life, and for me, I’ve seen a huge transformation in my money blueprint in the way that I experience, and the ability for me, I could do whatever I want, and I’m very, very happy to be able to say that. But, it wasn’t like this for a long time. I was giving a lot of value to the world and I didn’t know how to receive it because I grew up with that mentality of like you get money and you lose it. Like, you get it, and it’s going to find its way away from you.

So, I had to work on that inner dialogue and a big key, and I’m going to say this and then I’m just going to kind of leave this point alone, you have to truly understand your value, and so many of us don’t. We are so far off from that. Once you understand your value, you won’t settle any longer, and so many of us are in fear that if we actually charge or ask for what our value really is, we’re not going to have people wanting to hire us, and we continue to do these pitty-patty little jobs and just making ends meet. What’s so crazy is you’re filling all your time and energy with that stuff so you don’t even have the space to do those grander things that are actually valuable enough to do. It’s taking this light kind of risk.

For me, I’m going to share my — I personally, before Sleep Smarter came out, actually while I was writing it, I closed my practice. My clinical practice I’ve been running for over 10 years was still an easy six-figure business that was just running on automatic, and it was a safety net. I got a lot of fulfillment and enjoy out of helping other people and seeing all of these. People would come to me, as we talked about earlier on the show. The people who they’ve been told they got Stage IV cancer, there’s nothing they can do about it. They’ve got this terminal condition, or they’ve got this degenerative diseases, this irreversible condition, their blood sugar is over 400, they don’t know how they’re walking around, they’re on metformin or they’re on lisinopril, or whatever it is. That was my work, and that was very fulfilling but I had to be honest with myself about what I wanted for my life.

That’s why I started to create my show. It was to create master classes on that subject matter so I don’t have to say this to you personally anymore and I could teach more people at the same time. I made the decision to close my practice to focus on writing books, to focus on speaking, to focus on influencing influencers. Making sure that more health practitioners had this information in their hand and stop trying to do stuff by myself with my own little life and being completely foolish, because we all — I think a lot of people listening too, you go through that lone wolf mentality of, “I’m going to do this by myself, I’m going to change the world!” But, it doesn’t really work like that. If you’re going to do anything of great significance, it’s going be with and through other people, and I embrace that, and that changed everything.

So, I closed my practice and put my full intentions and efforts into making Sleep Smarter a success. I mean, I’m going to say I can’t believe it, but I can. This was the expectation what I worked for to make it not just a bestseller here in the U.S., but an international bestselling book. It’s getting translated now, I think, in 12 different languages and all the media. I’ve been to CNN and to whatever, just like all these amazing places that it’s taking me and seen my wealth grow, but not directly through the book itself. It’s all of the other things that I’ve made myself available for that I was blocking with my little one-on-one sessions that brought me — I needed that to get me to where I am, but I couldn’t stay there. I had to understand my value, and so I just wanted to share that. I hope that offers some value to everybody.

It’s awesome. You connecting to your purpose and to your value and then being bold, and you had something very safe and comfortable and like, “No, I’ve got something bigger here I’m called to do and I’m going to have faith and go all out.” You took the risk and obviously it’s clearly paying off, so thank you for sharing that story.

One final question. On every episode, I work to do a little bit myth busting, and you’ve done a lot of it throughout, but just maybe one myth on diet nutrition food, one myth on exercise, and one myth on sleep that you just hear over, and over, and over again, and you just want to shout out to the world like, “Those are wrong and here’s the truth!” So, give me, maybe, one myth and bust each one in each of your categories.

Oh my goodness, this is the whole show right here.

I know, I know.

One of these. This is tough because of it has to have the science behind it. But, hopefully, everybody will be compassionate and understanding. This is going to be a bullet point answer, but when it comes to nutrition, it’s becoming more common knowledge now that calories did not tell the whole story, and it’s sad when I still hear about this, people buying their 200 calorie pack of SnackWell cookies or whatever. But, this is the part that people don’t hear is that it’s the quality of those calories, but what does quality actually mean? It’s what it does to your hormone. Your hormones determine everything. We even talked about in context of how you feel. But, your hormones determine everything about your physical appearance. They’re chemical messengers that communicate between all the cells in your body, what your body should be doing. So, 200 calories of those SnackWell cookies are going to impact your hormones way different than 200 calories of spinach. It’s going to have a completely different hormonal cascade. It’s the quality of those calories that we want to focus on, not the calories themselves.

So that’s one. When it comes to exercise, the idea that more is better, I think, is really a huge problem. I’ve seen this across the board in my clinic and also working with a lot of physicians and chiropractors, they’re pumped that some of these gyms that advocate like kicking your face in every day are open because it keeps them in business. They’re like, “I love it!” that this gym just opened because people are buying into that. Also, there’s this love, there’s this sense of community and purpose when we start to do this stuff. But, to think that you need to beat yourself down in order to have the body that you want, the body composition that you want is just not true.

To tie in sleep here, University of Chicago published a study recently that took dieters and they put them on the same exact diet, counting calories the whole nine, and their exercise was the same as well. Here’s what’s so interesting. One phase of the study, they allow these individuals that are tracking everything to get eight and a half hours of sleep. Another phase of the study, they own the same exact diet, no more exercise, no more cutting calories anything, but they sleep deprived them. So, now they’re getting five and a half hours of sleep. At the end of the study, they found that the people who were getting adequate sleep lost 55% more body fat. 55% more body fat, mood changes in diet and exercise.

So, exercise isn’t the key here with body transformation. Again, I told you earlier, it’s about assimilation of nutrients, elimination of metabolic waste products. The sexiness is a side effect. How do you get the most bang for your back? You do hormonally powerful exercises and you let your body heal. Exercise is a hormetic stressor and it changes during sleep, if you let your body recover. Younger people, yes, absolutely, you can “get away” with this of getting less sleep and doing some other stuff and getting — you got the hormones of like a Greek God when you’re in your teens and early 20’s.

But, what happens is, and this what I cited in Sleep Smarter, our University of California researchers found that you are shortening your telomeres, which is basically the greatest biological marker on how long you’re going to live. You’re speeding up your aging process. This is why so many people in their 20s now are getting elderly people diseases. Seeing greater rates of obesity, cancer, heart disease. Having people in their early 20’s coming in that are on like Lipitor is like, “What? How? You’re accelerating your aging process. That’s what happened to me. I accelerated my aging process. Good news is, you can turn things back.

That’s with the exercise, hormonally powerful stuff. So, that would be make sure you get at least one session every week of HIIT training – I’m sorry, of high-intensity interval training. Also, making sure that we’re lifting some heavy stuff every now and then. Maybe it’s one time a week or two times a week, you’ve got to lift some heavy weights to get that great anabolic secretion of — we’ve been talking about throughout of anabolic versus catabolic.

With sleep, another thing, more is better. You need to get seven to eight hours of sleep. That’s just wrong, straight-up wrong. Everybody is different when it comes to your sleep requirement. You’re different when it comes to your sleep requirement from how you might be next week. If you decide to, “I’m going to sign up to get my doctorate degree and I’m going train for Ironman,” guess what? You’re going to need more sleep for your brain to recover and also your physical structure as well.

It’s really the quality of sleep. Here’s just one quick nugget on how this works. You can be physiologically passed out, physically unconscious for eight hours, and there’s a study that was done – again, I cited this in the book – on caffeine consumption, and they found that individuals who consume caffeine, and they had them take caffeine right before bed, three hours before bed, and even six hours before bed. They found that caffeine consumption even six hours before going to sleep, they lost objectively through sleep monitor. The person thought they slept eight hours, but they lost a full hour of sleep. Their brainwaves and all the hormones, all that stuff was off, they lost it, a full hour of sleep.

That’s the problem is that we’re getting pseudo-sleep. We’re not actually getting the high-quality sleep that we think we’re getting. Because, a person could have actually slept for just seven hours without the caffeine and had the same effect. It’s not that caffeine is the enemy. I’m a fan, full disclosure, chocolate is great. There’s great tea, there’s coffee, all this stuff, but we need to have it on the right spot in our lives.

So, make sure that we have that in the early part of the day because many of us, on average, we have a half-life for caffeine of about eight hours. So, it means after eight hours, half of the caffeine is still active in your system. So if it’s 300 mg you took, 150 is still active eight hours later. Just having a caffeine curfew, utilizing a real like high-quality sources of caffeine, because the source of caffeine matters as well because of the co-factors that come along with the source.

That’s another big myth that I’ve been working my behind off to make sure to teach the world that it’s not about the number of hours of sleep you get; it’s about the quality of that sleep. I hope that answers the question.

You’re awesome. Thank you so much, Shawn. It’s been a real honor and pleasure to spend this time with you. I feel like I’ve made a new friend, like you’re incredible. So thank you, thank you, thank you.

Thank you. It’s my honor. Thank you for having me.

This was one more millionaire strategy that will make you wealthy while keeping you healthy. Before you leave, remember that if you want to get it all together, then make sure to sign up for a free online training session at howto.money. You will learn my signature formula for transforming your life from debt to multi-millionaire. It’s already helped thousands of others and it can help you too, and it’s the only moneymaking system that makes your health your number one asset. So, if you’re curious how it all works, visit howto.money and sign up today. Remember, it’s free, so why not invest some time in learning “how to money”? Again, that’s howto.money. H-O-W-T-O dot M-O-N-E-Y. As always, be sure to subscribe to this podcast to make sure that you catch next week’s millionaire strategy. Signing off, this is Krisstina Wise, your personal guide to having it all. Here’s to living a Wealthy Wellthy Life. I’ll see you next time.

#51 – Shawn Stevenson: Become the Strongest Version of Yourself, Part 1

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Episode Summary

Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life with Krisstina Wise. It’s Shawn Stevenson’s mission to help others become the strongest, healthiest, and happiest version of themselves. Shawn grew up with aspirations to be an athlete, but little did he know he was incredibly sick. After breaking his hip at the age of 13, Shawn had a string of health issues that soon followed. Finally, becoming sick and tired of being sick and tired, Shawn took action to cure his ‘incurable’ disease.

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What We Covered

  • 02:50 – Who is Shawn?
  • 05:20 – How did Shawn break his hip at the age of 13, for apparently no reason? There was something wrong, but the doctors didn’t catch it.
  • 10:35 – Hope is very fleeting. Shawn decided he wasn’t going to hope to get better, he was going to take action to get better.
  • 16:30 – Physicians are so beaten down and overworked.
  • 19:40 – The research shows there’s a lot more lives being lost due to doctors not being able to give dedicated, and real, one-on-one care.
  • 22:10 – What was Shawn’s defining moment?
  • 26:40 – Don’t wait for something to happen. You have to be the one to take action!
  • 29:20 – Get comfortable with discomfort.
  • 36:10 – It’s so sad that we’re treating children with ADHD medicine because of ‘who they are’.
  • 40:30 – Sometimes it’s okay just to feel sad.
  • 43:45 – Join us next week for part 2!

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You are at the intersection of wealth, health, and happiness. Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life.

Hello, and welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life, the show about becoming wealthy without sacrificing your healthy. Each week, I interview a counter-cultural thought leader to bring you a unique millionaire mindset. I’m Krisstina Wise, bestselling author, millionaire coach, and your personal guide to money, health, and happiness.

Today, I tackle health wealth with Shawn Stevenson. Shawn is the bestselling author of Sleep Smarter, a comprehensive guide of 21 strategies to help people sleep their way towards a healthier body. Shawn is the host of the smash hit podcast, The Model Health Show, which gets millions of downloads per year and was once featured as the number 1 Health podcast on iTunes.

Shawn has an amazing story. He was diagnosed with a devastating illness at the age of 20 that caused a loss of function in one of his legs. He was eventually able to make a full recovery through diet, exercise, and mindset changes. Now, he’s one of the most prominent voices in the health community. He’s gone onto become the founder of Advanced Integrative Health Alliance, a company providing health and wellness services worldwide. He’s been featured in Entrepreneur Magazine, Men’s Health, ESPN, FOX News, and many other major media outlets. As you can tell, Shawn is quite the success story. I loved this interview. I was inspired hearing about his own healing journey and how he’s turned his struggle in educating others about health wealth across the globe. I hope you enjoyed this conversation as much as I did.

This is part one of a two-part interview. If you like this episode, be sure to come back next week for part two. Enjoy.

Alright Shawn. It’s so much fun to be here with you today. I recently stumbled across — I mean, a lot of my guests, I either know them or I’m introduced to them in one way or another. But, I just stumbled across your website. I don’t even remember how and I was so impressed with you, your story, your mission, and I thought, “Oh my gosh, I have to get this guy as a guest on my podcast,” so I’m really looking forward to getting to know you.

That kind of blew my mind. I had no idea. You know, most people find out about me through the interwebs, but through somebody or another show or something like that, I love that. Google works!

I know. That Google thing, exactly. Yeah, it was all Google. So you have a really, really great story. Would you share it with me and the listeners a little bit about you, your life journey, your story, kind of where you wound up like how it got you here?

Sure. Well, I was an aspiring athlete. You know, that was kind of my goal in life was to play collegiate sports, hopefully go pro. A lot of young guys have that same goal, but I’m also — thank goodness, for some reason, I also developed this very analytical nature or maybe it is just within my DNA to be very analytical. So, I would mathematically break down, “Is this even possible?” and I was being very honest with myself. I had a lot of things to affirm that this was very possible for me.

When I was 15 years old, I ran a 4.5 40 yard dash which is like NFL Combine speed for running backs and defensive backs and all that stuff, and I had letters coming in early on and everything was looking pretty good. Problem was when I was 15, 16 years old, I was at track practice now, because I also ran track, and I was doing a 200 meter time trial, which is half a lap, sprinting, you know you’re behind off, and as I was coming off the curve into the straightaway, my hip broke, and this wasn’t from any kind of trauma, I didn’t fall, but just running and my hip broke. I kind of limped my way to the finish line. I didn’t know what happened. I was almost, my coach kind of pulled me to the side like, “What’s going on?”

I came to practice being a hard headed young guy. I came to practice for the next couple of days before I was forced to go at getting looked at and I go a scanned done of my hips, and there it was, the iliac crest, So, this is like the tip of your hip bone. The top was broken off and just kind of out in space, you know, with the scan, and he’s like “Oh, There’s the problem.”

So, I was treated with conventional standard of treatments, standard of care, which was stay off the leg, take some NSAIDs, and basically, what’s so funny was I’m thinking about that moment in time because my son goes into this high school I went to right now. I got to use the prized elevator in the school for that amount of time because I had my crutches or whatever. It was really awesome. I got to get out of class early.

So, that was the cool part. The problem was nobody stopped to ask “How did this 15 -year-old kid break his hip from running?” It’s very, very abnormal. Having hip fractures is usually reserved for people much much older, you know 70s-plus and oftentimes. it’s skewed much towards women, this happening to. A lot of people think that people fall and break their when they’re elderly, but in fact, they break their hip then they fall because of their bone density. So, number 1, this was huge warning sign that  had some hormonal issues and also some huge deficiencies, but conventional medicine did not pay attention to that.

Fast forward the story, that was just kind of just the warning sign, and when I was 20 years old, and by the way that lead to string of injuries after that. I just kept snapping hamstrings, I kept having back problems. I fell apart, letters stop coming, end of the athletic endeavors. You know, as things we’re looking: 20 years old, I’m in college now at this point, academic scholarship, luckily, and I was diagnosed with something called degenerative bone disease and degenerative disc disease. The disc in between the vertebrae and my spine were breaking down rapidly to the degree that my physician, at the time, said I had the spine of an 80-year-old person. 20 with a spine of an 80-year-old human being according to this well-meaning gentleman.

To make a long story short, when I was sitting in his office, he put the scan up for me to see and I asked him this specific question, which to this day I have no idea, I promise you, I have no idea what possessed me to ask this question. But I asked him, “Does this have anything to do with what I’m eating?” and he cocked his head to the side and like shook his head a little and he looked at me like I was crazy, he said, “This has absolutely nothing to do with what you’re eating. This is just something that happens. I’m sorry about this. You’re going to have to learn to deal with it,” and he wrote me a prescription for some drugs. Eventually, I was fitted with a back brace but never sat right with me was the fact that he said that it has nothing to do what you’re putting in your mouth but he wrote me some drugs to put in my mouth, right?

This is a really important takeaway for anybody, any opportunity I get to talk about this. What happened in that moment is called a nocebo effect. A placebo effect, if you look at the research, which will blow your mind in how powerful the human mind is, placebos, across the board, on average, are about 33% effective. So, somebody’s thinking they’re getting a treatment for something like chemotherapy for cancer or antidepressant medication, and 33%, on average, their symptoms reverse, right? Upwards of like 80 plus percent for some placebo antidepressants, for example, or cholesterol medications, you name it. They’ve done these research projects and saw this across the board. That’s one thing. It’s kind of a positive injunction you get that something good is going to happen when you take this medication from a trusted authority. A nocebo effect is when you get a negative injunction from a person of authority that something bad is going to happen and you proceed to believe that and your cell starts to break down.

Over the course of the next two years, I went in from going to see the doctor for that particular scan that he saw on my spine for some kind of an irritating leg pain to within two weeks, chronic pain, to the degree of this horrible sciatic pain shooting down my leg. I began to become afraid of standing up because this pain and I just began to break down really quickly. I gained a bunch of weight, I gained about 50 pounds of, I’ll call it, fluffiness. I was a very fluffy version of Shawn Stevenson, and definitely teetering on depression, and I felt like I lost myself – a loss of purpose, no real hope. I was starting to really lose hope in my life because this was going to be the rest of my life.

Just to kind of wrap this whole story up, because this is the bad part. There’s a much better part coming up in this movie. But, two years go by, and I’m on a slew of medications and I also had two ruptured disc in my back L4, and L5, S1. I want people to really understand that whenever you get a diagnosis of something that is life-threatening or completely life-changing for you, make sure you get a second, third, fourth opinion, and I did do that, but it came back the same thing because I was dealing with conventional medicine. That was the point when I hit rock bottom, which everybody’s telling me, these experts that I can’t do anything about my condition. Then that’s when I decided to actually do something about it.

All this time, I’ve been putting my hopes off unto somebody else. I’ve been putting my health off unto somebody else to come and take care of me or to save me and the reality is they didn’t walk in my shoes, and they didn’t have the ability to tell me what was possible for me. Everything changed in that moment of decision, I really decided, and most people never do that. You know this is well. It’s more like “I’m going to give this to try. I’ll give this the old college try-out. I’ll give this a shot. I wish that something would happen. I hope this works.”

Hope floats. It’s not tangible right? I think hope is a great name like your kid’s name is Hope. “This is Hope Stevenson,” whatever. But, as a concept of how we live our lives, hope is very fleeting and it’s not strong. When you have this innate ability to decide and to act upon that decision. Decision is from a Latin day meaning from cardei, which means to cut, you cut away to possibility of failure so that everything going on in your life is focus on then.

For me, I decided to get well, and there are three specific things that I did which we can go back and talk about if you want to. Number 1, I changed my nutrition. I was eating typical university food at the time, what I call the tough diet, typical university food, pizza, and doughnuts, and all this stuff all the time. I changed the way that I was eating, I changed my movement practices very specifically, and also the big key is, you’re not healing if you’re not sleeping.

My greatest struggle through that two-year period was when I laid my head down on my pillow at night. My sleep was the biggest problem. Part of the issues I was dealing with medications and all those things just to try and get pseudo-sleep. But, over the course of the next six weeks, again being very analytical person, it wasn’t like the seeming — like the clouds parted and everything became better all of a sudden but, over the next six weeks, I lost 28 pounds.

The pain that I’ve been experiencing for two and a half years at this point, every day was gone, and eventually I got a scan done about nine months later, almost a year later, and I regenerated the tissue in my spine that they said was impossible. My two herniated ruptured disc retracted on their own, and this was really the birthing of my career at that time, because all of the people around me in my university saw what happened.

Fellow students, professors became my first clients. Eventually, I shifted all my coursework over to biology, kinesiology, and I graduated, opened my own practice, went on to write books, and have a number one podcast in the U.S. several times and open a successful practices I mentioned helping thousands and thousands of people and now, I’m here with you today.

That’s so awesome. Well, there’s so much in that story. First of all, thank you. This traditional medicine thing, and now a lot of people, my followers and listeners, I get a lot like you, a lot of emails and, you know, just communications these days that, “I’ve gone to every doctor and they told me it’s hopeless, basically.” I’ve never heard the word “nocebo”, so I love that and you’re right. We get planted these stories and we accept them to be true. You went through this, I’ve gone through this, a lot of people have, but it’s putting our power of health into the hands of the doctors and believing  what they say, and then all they say is they give you the prognosis and say, “Here’s some meds to take,” and, “Good luck. You’re on your own,” and it’ll get worse over time.

What is that? Is it cultural that we have been thought that we’re not empowered, we can’t sort of control our health or regain our health? Where did it start that we gave our power of our health and our life over to what the doctor’s opinions are?

Oh, my goodness. Well, I’m not a big conspiracy theorist guy. I’m not talking about the aliens and all that kind of stuff. I’m looking at the research and not to say there isn’t aliens, alright? I won’t disrespect anybody who was like, “I was abducted. I promise I was abducted.”

My job is to look at the data and if you go back and you look at history like, “How did this actually happen?” and you look at the early part of the 1900s specifically when allopathic medicine and the big funding in cancer industry really started to take hold, it was equal parts if you look at chiropractic. Homeopathy was big like all of this different methodologies of treatment were all equal parties, but then all of these money began to be invested in pharmaceutical industry. It’s a big cash cow. I mean, we’re talking about multi, multi, multi-billion dollar entity here.

By the way, just as I’m saying this, please understand that there’s a righteous thing behind it for all these people working. I can’t even tell you how many physicians that are in my life now and they all start off with the same purpose. They want to help people, they want to serve. But, the problem is the way that the system is built from the inside. There’s tens of thousands of people right now who are learning how to deliver chemotherapy for people, like that’s their tool, but they want to save lives. What’s happening, these are the smartest people in the world, and you take a very smart person and you teach them to do the wrong thing, they become world-class at doing the wrong thing. They are masterful with it.

That’s really what the issue that we’re seeing today and also we began to become very dogmatic especially if you invest a lot of time and energy into learning the wrong thing and you’re great at it. Then you hear something that’s counter to that, it pushes up against your ego in a big way.

This is why I’m so proud and excited and grateful for all of the wonderful functional medicine doctors, integrated physicians that are coming to the forefront now. Many of them are my friends. Dr. Sara Gottfried who wrote the fore for my book. She’s Harvard-trained, MIT-trained, wrote “The Hormone Diet”. Dr. Mark Hyman, all of these wonderful people, and these are people that you’re seeing on television now. You’re not seeing the conventional guy you’re seeing it at Dr. Oz and what have you, people like Dr. Joseph Mercola.

They’re changing the culture because we’re going back to this fundamental thing which is you are all together. There’s not something separate about you. When we talk about your eyesight, for example, and you go off to see a specific physician for that purpose. It’s great to have a specialty. To think that your vision isn’t impacted by the function of your liver is negligent. To think that the health of your oral care isn’t impacting your heart is straight-up stupid.

We know, if you just look at the research but the problem, again, like we’re going back to, the physicians, the way the system is structured, they are so beat down, they are so overworked. They don’t have time to looked at all the latest research and medical journals. They’re just trying to keep their head above water, right? It’s like this, it’s trading your time for money but at this kind of grander scale. It’s really the way the system has been constructed, and also pharmaceutical industry being so integrated in the culture where they’re getting a lot of money for that too. It’s a big part of their income, oftentimes, is through drugs. That’s sad that it’s like that.

If you look at Chinese medicine, for example, traditional Chinese medicine. In many constructs, they get paid when you’re well. You don’t pay the doctor when you’re sick. They’re paid to keep you well. Our system is the opposite, they get paid when you’re sick. So, there would be a problem if, all of a sudden, there were a bunch of healthy people. It’s a very vested interest in the farming of sick people and the culture. Even the FDA for example: Food and Drug Administration. They’re supposed to be governing all of this stuff, but food is making us sick and we take the drugs and they’re getting paid off the whole thing.

So again, not conspiracy. This is how things are structured, and it’s just looking at it like, “Okay, that’s the way it is, and so it is. What am I going to do about it,” right? Am I going to get to you to invest in this industry that is milking me for everything that I’ve got and hurting my family or am I going to do something different and choose to invest my dollars with people who actually know what they’re doing and also learn about myself? You should be an expert on your body. You live there. That’s where you live. It doesn’t mean that it has to be hard. It can actually be incredibly fun and enjoying to learn about how you function and fall in love with yourself. That promise, that’s really the bridge to changing our culture today.

I love that. Your message and so many messages right now, like the first message is it’s really creating an awareness of what is behind some of this traditional, conventional status quo medicine and methodologies and philosophies of the more the allopathic side. One is just the awareness of that and then two is letting people know really that we do have the power. We don’t have to give over our power to the doctors and accept what their opinions or beliefs are that it’s nice to listen and maybe take that into consideration of lots of different advices, but we don’t have to accept it like it’s a gospel.

Exactly. Then that’s tough for us though because it’s built into our cultures. The first thing that you said is like, “Is this cultural?” It’s built into our culture that they have the answers and they’re just a person who went to school a little bit longer or spent studied something specific for a little bit longer. They’re not the end all, be all, but we have this God complex about our physicians and, in some ways, it’s kind of rightfully so because they can save lives. But, the research shows that there are a lot more lives being lost. I remember a few years ago, I believe this was in 2008, this big study came out showing the statistics with iatrogenesis. I don’t know if you’ve heard this term before, but in people they’re going to want to go to Dr. Google and check this out because this is kind of blow your mind.

But, iatrogenesis was, at that time, the third leading cause of death in our country. “Iatro” meaning physician, “genesis” means created: physician-created death. This was through improperly prescribed medications, unwarranted surgeries, even properly prescribed medications, but overdoses, things like that by the patient. So, it’s all detailed. This kind of stuff is kind of hard for me but it’s all detailed there in the report, and it’s kind of shocking but then again, you don’t hear about it. This wasn’t on the front page of The New York Times. But, it’s a very real thing because we’re not actually treating humans and we’re getting away from the fact that. Even the word doctor means teacher and your doctor being a teacher for you and a coach but you, ultimately, having the power to govern your own well-being.

And we should. Like you said that this our vessel, this is me, my body, my experience, how I feel that not only are we empowered to heal ourselves or to become healthy. But, like you said too to want the desire of that, this love of self, the love of health to want these things thinking, “Oh man. You may not have to eat a healthy diet or are you kidding me? I have to go exercise or really like now the sleep thing, like I need to be.” This attitude, this cultural attitude is almost like, “Oh I just want the doctors to fix me if something’s wrong,” and two, “I don’t want to be responsible for my health.” It’s really this mindset and it sounds like you were in a little bit of that and you were accepting and you were in this nocebo effect and accepting for two and a half years like, “This is hopeless. My life is over. I’m 20-something and I’m an 80-year-old man. I thought I was going to be a professional athlete and here I’m stuck, basically, in my bed and I’m on a bunch of medication.”          

What was like this defining moment? you were in that story and that was what your life was about? Was there a catalyst or was there something where you’re just like, “F this. I’m not going to live this way. There’s got to be more of the story and I’m going to go figure out what that is.”

Yeah, yeah. Crazy thing is, and I’ve been talking about this a lot lately. I think there’s a lot to be said for struggle, like I think that there’s something super valuable about struggle and also hitting rock bottom. It’s really great for a lot of people, it’s a really sobering place to be, because so often we’re coasting through life and we’re not really giving what we can give, we’re not really living up to our own potential, we’re not really taking actions to make the changes that we can make until things get bad enough.

That’s why even with the current climate with, whatever, the economy, the political climate, whatever it is that is irritating people, what are you doing about it? I think things need to get bad enough for people to mobilize and to make a decision and to take action, and what that means for me is to give your gift, to really step into your greatness and to do what you’re here to do. From my experience, it’s, in some form of capacity, it’s to serve, it’s to give your gift.

When I was sitting there on the edge of my bed with my pill bottles in hand, just looking at these drugs before I take them so they can basically knock me out so I can sleep because my pain was so bad that the pain would wake me up if I changed positions. It was killing me. It was such an annoyance. I also had restless leg syndrome before it was a thing. So, this is back like in 2000 before it had its official drug. Restless Leg Syndrome, which I didn’t find this out until years later, It was a side effect from the Celebrex that I was taking for the degeneration in my bones, right?

Anyways, so I’m sitting there looking at these medications and it just kind of came rushing in. This was like a few days after I get this last bad news that there’s nothing I can do about it from the physician that people tell me, “He’s the best. He’s going to be able to,” same story. So, I’m sitting there and I’m really in a bad place, and I realize that there was really two options, I can give up or I can do something about it. It was just kind of right there in black and white. You know how stuff comes kind of rushing in all at the same time.

Within that was, and I think this was really important as well for us to have examples and models and an example of what’s possible. The feeling of significance is very important and my grandmother, I remember my grandmother, and she would still be calling me to this process, like always trying to check on me, it’s very annoying as a young kid. At your grandma like, “I’m fine. Leave me alone!”

But, I remember growing up on how she would always tell me how smart I was, and how special I was, and how I was going to do great things in my life, and that irritated me. That hit that button because I wasn’t doing that and I knew she was right. I knew it was within me, I felt it when she would say it like, “I am, yes.” But, look at my life. The life results weren’t equaling up to my blueprint of what I thought it should be. That’s when I really mobilized myself and I realized I’ve got all this potential in me but I’m sitting back here waiting for something to happen for me to do something and everything has already happened. All the bad stuff is going on right now and I’m either going to throw my life away or I’m going to do something about it, and I chose to do something about it.

I agree with that too and it’s the, I say, breakdown before breakthrough. So many of this, we really have hit rock bottom. That’s the inspiration behind like not accepting that and wanting to do something about it and then turning it into helping others, like what you’re doing. So yeah, there is so much in the struggle, and I think, you know, even culturally, again, we don’t want struggle, we don’t want pain, we don’t want any amount of discomfort, so we’re not willing to just go through the struggle and sometimes that’s necessary to get us to the place of, “I’m not going to accept being in this bed. I’m not going to accept that this is what the doctors say. I don’t know what else is out there but I’m going to at least do something about it.”

I love what you say too here is that, I’m not going to wait for something to happen. That’s such a powerful statement because that is part of this. It’s waiting for something to happen, waiting for the doctors to tell us the right thing, waiting for it to feel better, whatever the case is. But, waiting for something to happen is opposed to, “No, it’s up to me. I’m going to make something happen.”

Exactly. You know, like a lot of us — I’ve been talking about this a lot recently as well. I feel that there is a purpose deficiency in our culture today. So few people are feeling  cut adrift. They don’t feel like they know what their purpose is, and so they’re waiting for a sign. Like, “If I can just find out what my purpose is, then I’ll do it. Shawn, I promise you. I just need to. I don’t know what it is.”

The crazy thing is it’s literally like you choose, you get to choose what that is. It’s not something that’s going to happen outside of you. You get to choose it even when the things happen outside of you, you still have to recognized it. I’ve seen this in my experience. I’ve worked with thousands of people in a one-on-one context in my clinic. Literally, hundreds of thousands of millions of people have been impacted by my work in some form or fashion, but hundreds and thousands of people directly through live events, my show, all these different things. I’ve got a very big bank to see the results in.

This is what I’ve seen is that, even though it’s a natural human phenomenon just kind of the way that our brains are built. If you look at the prefrontal cortex, the limbic brain, your amygdala. We’re hardwired to avoid pain and look for pleasure. That’s all good. Now, the issue is we’re a much more evolved creature where we can utilize our frontal cortex and kind of quiet down the amygdala that’s constantly afraid of things. That struggle that we’re trying to avoid so mightily, what’s going to happen, because you are a perfect phenomenon with gifts, talents, capacities that have never existed before in human history and never will exist again – this is a critical time right now – in reality, because you are very specific and unique to this moment, if you’re not living up to your potential, life is going to put events around you to get you to wake up.

This is what I’ve seen in my experience. Again, I’m an analytical person but this is kind of hard for me to explain right here: metaphysics, kind of quantum physics, I don’t know. But here’s the thing. What I’ve also seen is we don’t have to have those really bad things, horrible things, those really drop you to your knees, pain points and moments in our lives, if you can get comfortable with the discomfort. If you start to ease into the pain yourself, if you proactively get out of that saneness and proactively work on bettering yourself and bettering your world, and also coupled with learning from the pain, learn from the challenges that come up because they’re all there to teach you something, it can be a small lesson if you get it and you adapt, but if you don’t, life is going to hand you something like a bigger, “Oh, you didn’t get that one? Well then, try this,” to develop. Maybe you’re lacking the compassion that you were brought here or – this is getting a little bit out of the scientific realm – but that you were here to express in the world that maybe you need to deliver to your community, or your workplace, or within your family, or within yourself, compassion for you. Maybe it’s there to develop your sense of purpose and your leadership. Maybe your ability to lead isn’t strong enough for the goal that you’ve set for yourself.

So, to bring this back to the science now because I got a little bit off there. So, there’s parts of your brain, the reticular cortex, reticular activating system, these parts of your brain are always scanning your environment to bring you closer to things that you hold top of consciousness. People see this weird phenomenon all the time in a small aspect in like if you get a new car and start to see that car all over the place, your reticular cortex — it’s not like it wasn’t happening before. It’s just your brain is attuned to it and it’s scanning your environment looking for that thing. Also, because we’re all — and if you look at quantum physics, we’re literally all connected.

There’s this field, string theory, whatever you want to look at, and research done by  the U.S. Military where they have one person in one part of the country and another person — if people want to learn more about this stuff, they can locate Greg Braden’s work on this. Anyway, they’ll have two people on different parts of the country hooked up and they’re literally stimulating an emotional response in one of the people, and the other person’s brain is responding because they’ve created a rapport between them. Crazy stuff. Also Princeton University found that just two people in conversation, if you’re just talking to a person for a few minutes and you have rapport, your brains sync up. Your brain waves literally like your brains become like one in the way that they’re functioning the same.

It’s straight-up crazy stuff right? But, this is how we’re hardwired, so we want to utilize that to our advantage in the conversations that we’re in, the people that we’re around and understand that we are affecting our environment. So, when we ask those questions and when we’re working to become more of ourself to really grow and expand, and all this stuff we’re talking about right now of not going through all the drama and the struggle, those parts of your brain are going to be scanning your environment to find the information, the tools that you need to become it. But, if you’re constantly focused on negativity and all the problems, you’re just going to see that. You’re going to find more affirmation to why things might suck for you right now.

It’s things like, “Why can’t I find the person, the right relationship?” and when you ask that question, your brain is going to scan your environment to give you feedback like, “Oh well, because you got really bad breath,” or whatever it might be. Or, you have a really strange character flaw where you’re constantly blaming other people or negative things in your life, whatever it might be instead of asking, “What is it that I need to do to have the qualities necessary to have the most beautiful relationship that I could ever imagine?” Asking more empowering questions is a very, very important part of this whole conversation because that’s what your brain is designed to do. It’s designed to seek and find everything that you ask it but we use it, we use our power for — we kind of give our power away by not really utilizing this amazing tool we have.

Yeah and we’re also busy and life is chaos, and we’re running from place to place to place. We have no space to really connect, reflect, listen, pay attention. I know my own example, like my body, there’s so many things. My body was screaming at me, but I wasn’t paying attention because I’m so intentional on hitting my goals and my intentions, what I wanted, and all these flags, and bells and whistles, but I was completely oblivious to them, and it’s as though the universe had to take a big 2×4, and just take me right out the knees and out, because I wasn’t listening. The signs, the signals were there, but I was completely oblivious and unaware and wouldn’t have believed it at the time even if I were somewhat paying attention.

So, that’s number one is that, yeah, if we’re paying attention, we give ourself the space, we connect to people, our environment, we do get too crazy messages not to get too metaphysical, but I believe that too and I’m very analytical and scientific also. It’s producing that space for ourselves but also how much, in your opinion, is that because we don’t want discomfort, we don’t want to feel, because feeling some sadness or feeling some anxiety sometimes. I don’t mean like real chronic or pathological. So we’re taking a pill.

How much of being numb to life does that — like taking a pill because we don’t want the discomfort? Because, our feelings are there for a reason too, as sort of these signals or messages, or like you said, activation and these different places. But, if we’re numbing how we feel, the highs and the lows, we’re stuck in the middle, how much of that is the fact that we’re just numbing ourselves by not wanting any discomfort so we take a pill not to feel?

I love that. I just had a conversation with Dr. Susan David, who she wrote the book “Emotional Agility”, and Harvard staff, the whole thing, super smart lady. We kind of veered into this area of something really interesting, which is the fact that our culture has medicalized sadness. It’s created the situation where our emotions are problems that need to be treated with medicine. If you look at the research again, a lot of the signs and symptoms that we are given medication for, like my son was just telling me about his friend, they’re both 16 years old, and he’s on ADHD medication and he’s a 16-year-old kid. It’s so sad for me to hear that because we’re treating our kids like their perception of reality and the way that they function as a human being is a problem.

Let me take a step back because I don’t want anybody to get the wrong message here. We have to take a broader look at this first, a global perspective. Number one, when you hear that somebody has — in the marketing like the commercials come on, “This could be due to a chemical imbalance in your brain.” Did they actually look at your brain? Did they actually test? Did you get some scans done to find out? Did they do any panels, or look at your neurotransmitters? No. This is based off of a conversation that you are now bipolar, or whatever.

This is a natural human function for us to have depression, for us to have sadness. Even the word depression, it’s a label for something, right? For us to feel melancholy or cut adrift, or indifference, or a lack of compassion, or compassion, or happiness, joy, whatever it is. We have this wide range of emotions that I talked about with her. It was wonderful, because it’s really about learning what our emotions are telling us? Like you just said, we take something to numb it. We’re not dealing with the actual causes, which, I promised you, it’s chances are very, very low percentage that there’s actually a chemical imbalance in your body.

Here’s what’s so funny, just the thought of something that make you happy or even smiling, physiologically smiling, changes your neurochemistry instantly. It’s very difficult to smile and to be sad. You see this across the board, it’s very, very difficult to do that. It’s not like I’m faking my happiness. This is basically you’re messing with your own wiring and learning how you function. Oftentimes, our sadness, our depression is feedback that there’s something that needs to change in our life. That’s really where the work is.

That’s where the masterful expression of your life takes place, because I met some phenomenal people who have dealt with like deep, dark depression, and it’s brought them to the most joy and happiness. We find out this really interesting thing and what I found is also a wonderful treatment for individuals struggling with depression is to give to somebody else. It’s amazing how that makes you feel better so quickly because there’s always somebody who’s doing worse than you are.

I’ve worked with people who have lost children, which is probably the greatest fear and pain somebody can experience. There’s many others. So, not to say that is the strongest, but that’s a very difficult place to be, and finding purpose within that. People who’ve lost body parts, people who’ve lost loved ones, people who their lover for their entire life is gone, failing in the biggest thing they’ve ever set out to do, losing a million-dollar company, all of these things that are extremely tragic, but they are absolutely fertile with gifts there for something.

Most of us, though, we don’t experience those like hugely breaking to your knees kind of things. It’s mostly irritations, chronic problems that we just aren’t dealing with. So, if we become more emotionally agile and attuned to what these emotions are feeding us — because like you said, we’re usually running around, we’re not paying attention to our own emotions in our own body.  If we just take a few minutes a day just to tune in and ask, “What is this irritation trying to teach me? What is this depression? What quality is wanting to emerge in me due to the sadness I’m experiencing? What is it that I’m here to learn from this? What is this trying to teach me?” I promise you that things are going to change very quickly. You’re going to get those answers. You cannot ask your mind a question that it’s not going to seek the answer to.

Sometimes, it’s okay just to feel sad.

Yes.

Sometimes life moments happen, and it’s okay to feel sad, and just sit with that and not try to numb it, not try to judge myself that I shouldn’t feel sad or whatever. Just sit with the sadness. It’ll pass, but the feelings are there too like sometimes it’s appropriate to be sad and if we don’t, that’s a different issue.

Yeah.

You know.

There’s movies about people like that, like American Psycho or something. I don’t know. I’ve never seen the movie. I loved that you said that, because I think more people need the permission today to be sad. I say this to my five-year-old son. I’m telling like, “You could be upset. Go ahead. If you’re sad, you could be sad. It’s fine.” Because he’ll try to suppress his emotions because of the way that it looks. Like, what other kids might do at school or whatever the kids may be. You can feel that feeling. At the end of the day, though, it’s like, “What are you going to do about it after you’ve let it run its course?”

For so many people, they just stay there, right? The good emotions and the not so good emotions, that too shall pass. They all pass. It’s like waves in the ocean. You’re kind of like a weird ocean walking around on two legs in a weird way, anyways. But, all of these things are very fleeting, and they move, and our desire, like I said, our brains were hardwired to move towards pleasure and move away from pain. If we get close to that pain, society says, “There’s something wrong with you and it’s not natural. You should be more happy and positive.”

No, you can actually feel those feelings. It’s awesome because it can teach you something. What happens is and here is the thing, this is like kind of Captain Obvious here is that we wouldn’t be able to experience true joy and fulfillment if we didn’t have contrast. We need to know what that other stuff feels like so we could actually feel our very best and achieve those highs in life. Those lows give you quite a perspective. So, this is why today in my life, I’m so grateful. I didn’t really even know what gratitude was. Like, “Thank you for my sandwich.” I didn’t really get it. Now, man, I’m grateful to be able to take a bite at food sometimes, like it just will hit you, and it’s so beautiful. What a different way to be where I was like on autopilot my entire life and missing all of the beauty, and the joy, and the potential. I’m so glad you said that because it’s not that sadness is a sickness.

That’s so well said, absolutely. It is the polarity. There is so many lessons that we know great joy when we know great pain. The polarity of the two and being able to relate the two and knowing that you’ve made it through things too. When we feel empowered, we take control and we know we can change things that then even creates the confidence that if I go through another hard time, I’ll make it through. There’s no need to necessarily stay stuck and then just give our power over or become sort of victim to this situation, or to use your words, “waiting for something to happen.”

As I said at the top of the episode, this has been part one of a two-part interview. Please come back next week for part two.

This was one more millionaire strategy that will make you wealthy while keeping you healthy. Before you leave, remember that if you want to get it all together, then make sure to sign up for a free online training session at howto.money. You will learn my signature formula for transforming your life from debt to multi-millionaire. It’s already helped thousands of others, and it can help you too, and it’s the only moneymaking system that makes your health your number one asset. So, if you’re curious how it all works, visit howto.money and sign up today. Remember, it’s free, so why not invest some time in learning “how to money”? Again, that’s howto.money. H-O-W-T-O dot M-O-N-E-Y. As always, be sure to subscribe to this podcast to make sure that you catch next week’s millionaire strategy. Signing off, this is Krisstina Wise, your personal guide to having it all. Here’s to living a Wealthy Wellthy Life. I’ll see you next time.

#50 – Sharon Lechter: “How to Money” (The Language You Can Master)

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Episode Summary

Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life with Krisstina Wise. Sharon Lechter is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, philanthropist, international speaker, and mentor. Sharon was the CEO of Rich Dad for over 10 years and co-authored the bestsellerRich Dad Poor Dad with Robert Kiyosaki. Under the Napoleon Hill Foundation, Sharon has also released three blockbuster books including Outwitting the Devil and Think andGrow Rich for Women.

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You can also click on the time stamps below to jump to those specific points in the conversation.

What We Covered

  • 03:10 – Who is Sharon?
  • 05:00 – At 25, Sharon left her steady job to join a startup, and it was the worst business decision ever. The good news is, she met her husband through that experience.
  • 07:35 – Sharon felt very sad that she left the Rich Dad company after working there for 11 years.
  • 09:00 – When Sharon left her steady job for a startup, why was that jump the worst business decision ever?
  • 13:15 – There’s nothing wrong with taking on a job before going into entrepreneurship. In fact, it might give you the springboard that you need.
  • 13:50 – They don’t tell you in the books how lonely entrepreneurship can be.
  • 15:25 – What was Sharon and Robert Kiyosaki’s inspiration to write Rich Dad Poor Dad?
  • 21:00 – Since Sharon works so closely with the Napoleon Hill Foundation, what common facts does she know about him that the public wouldn’t?
  • 28:55 – Out of Napoleon Hill’s two books, Think and Grow Rich and Outwitting the Devil, what are some of the main principles the audience must know about these books?
  • 31:50 – Fear only achieves one of two things: It motivates you or it paralyzes you.
  • 36:45 – A person who drifts through life opens themselves up to being abused by it.
  • 39:05 – What inspired Sharon to write Think and Grow Rich for Women?
  • 46:25 – Why is so important for women to get a grip on their finances and not always leave it up to the ‘man’?
  • 50:25 – If it’s not you taking care of your money, then who will?
  • 54:00 – What do kids and teens need to know about money?
  • 58:40 – Want to give your child a headstart in life? Teach them money!
  • 01:02:55 – Buy, build, or create assets.
  • 01:05:10 – Has Sharon ever experienced a crisis where she didn’t think she could come back from it?
  • 01:07:35 – What’s the biggest myth in Sharon’s industry that she’d like to bust?
  • 01:10:45 – What’s next for Sharon?

Tweetables

Links Mentioned

Sharon Lechter
Napoleon Hill Foundation
Rich Dad Coaching

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The WealthyWellthy LifeThe WealthyWellthy LifeThe WealthyWellthy LifeThe WealthyWellthy Life

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You are at the intersection of wealth, health, and happiness. Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life.

Hello, and welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life, the show about becoming wealthy without sacrificing your healthy. Each week, I interview a counter-cultural thought leader to bring you a unique millionaire mindset. I’m Krisstina Wise, bestselling author, millionaire coach, and your personal guide to money, health, and happiness.

Today, I tackle money wealth with Sharon Lechter. Sharon is an entrepreneur, bestselling author, international speaker, mentor, licensed CPA, a chartered global management accountant, and all-around rock star. While working with the Napoleon Hill Foundation, she released three blockbuster books: Think and Grow Rich, Three Feet from Gold, Outwitting the Devil, and Think and Grow Rich for Women. She’s also worked for CEO of Rich Dad for over a decade where she co-authored the international bestseller, Rich Dad Poor Dad, one of the top money books of all time. Additionally, she was instrumental in turning the electronic book industry into a multi-million dollar market that it is today. Finally, in all areas Sharon has driven by an incredible passion for education on financial literacy, a topic that is too often missing from the conversation.

She’s all about helping others increase their financial IQ. As you can tell, Sharon is a huge deal in the money world. This is a fantastic interview full of valuable millionaire takeaways. You absolutely don’t want to miss this one. Enjoy.

Sharon, you are such an inspiring woman. Among a long list of impressive professional accomplishments, you co-authored the international bestseller, Rich Dad Poor Dad, along with, I think, 14 or 15 other books in that Rich Dad series. you’ve been asked by Napoleon Hill Foundation to help re-energized the powerful teachings of Napoleon Hill, and you’ve released three bestselling books in cooperation with that foundation: Think and Grow Rich, Three Feet from Gold, Outwitting The Devil, and Think and Grow Rich for Women. Not to mention, you were appointed the first President of the United States Advisory Council on Financial Literacy serving both President Bush and President Obama, advising them on the need for Financial Literacy Education.

Wow, you’re amazing. Obviously, I’ve been following you for a long time and I’ve admired your work for a couple of decades now. I can’t believe it’s been that long. But, I’ve always been watching, reading your work and you’ve certainly had a big impact in my life, whether or not you know that.

The way I like start my interview is to learn a little bit of the backstory of my guest so that those don’t know you, who is Sharon Lechter? Tell me a little bit of your story.

Well thank you Krisstina. It’s wonderful to be with you again, and I appreciate it. It just tells you that I’m really old, all that stuff that you just talked about. I actually started my career as an accountant. Back then, one of the big gate accounting firms, I was only the fourth woman ever hired, like Coopers & Lybrand in the southeast United States.

So, I started my career in Atlanta, and about four years into it, I said I was working 80, 90, 100 hours a week. I said, “If I’m going to work this hard, I should be working for myself.” So, the entrepreneurial bug bit me at the ripe old age of 25 when, of course, we know everything, right? At 25, we’re experts. I had a client invite me to go with him and invest in a new company and I said — I still remember sitting at my bed in my apartment in Atlanta with the yellow legal pad where you have the pros and the cons listed out – didn’t help me a bit. I could’ve argued either side, but my hand kind of took off and wrote across on top of the page, “Why not?” That really has been my philosophy and my mantra my entire life is why not do something different? Why not take the road less traveled? We all hear about finding your why and that’s important, because that’s your passion. But, the why not is action-oriented. We ask why, we expect somebody to give us an answer. Why not is kind of like crumb within. Why not take the action that you know you have the opportunity to take?

So, I made that decision to go ahead leave public accounting and go with him. It was the worst business decision of my life, but that was the very early lesson in my life about what Napoleon Hill says, every adversity creates the seed of an equal or greater benefit. It was and it is still today the worst business decision of my life. I met my husband and we’ve been married 36 years. Actually, tomorrow, we will have known each other 37 years. So, again, worst business decision created the best life decision for me. I always tell people, failure is not how many times you fall down just as long as you get up and to keep going.

I went on and started a woman’s magazine and then I was concerned our children didn’t like to read, so I met the inventor of the first talking book, and those are children’s books that have the sound strips down the side where you touch it and it makes noise. We started that industry in 1987, and we grew that. First year was a million in sales and 9 and 23. In our fourth year, on track to hit 52 million in sales, we sold that company. That was in 1991 and that’s when we relocated – we were living in Wisconsin at the time – down here to Arizona, and we’ve been here ever since for 26 years.

A year later, our oldest son had graduated from high school, and went off to college and got into credit card debt his very first semester. So, I thought I was pretty mad at him but I realized I was more mad at myself, and that was the December of 1992. That’s when I dedicated the rest of my professional career to Financial Literacy, Financial Education. Started working with school systems.

Fast forward six years 1996, four years, I met Robert Kiyosaki through my husband. He has gone to him to get some legal work on patenting and the board game, Cashflow. I was the only one who got out of the rat race on the beta test of the game. I said, “This is information that people need to know,” so he asks me to be his partner. We wrote “Rich Dad Poor Dad” together first and that started a 10-year partnership where we wrote 15 books together. Of course, we were blessed with success because it was the right message, a needed message at that time. We ended up with 108 countries, 51 languages, and it was quite a ride of success. But, more importantly, people were telling other people about it because they found value, and that was such an incredible opportunity.

Left the Rich Dad Organization in 2007, because my partners wanted to go into franchise and I didn’t agree with the model. That’s when a few months later, I was having a little pity party for myself like, “Did I make the right decision?” and that’s when I got the call from the White House. A few months later I got the call from — I often tell people, “Sometimes you have to close one door for other doors to open,” because I would not have gotten the call from White House had I still been at Rich Dad. I would have not gotten the call from Napoleon Hill Foundation had I still been at Rich Dad. Sometimes, you have to take steps that are right for you, and really with a little bit of unknown of the future.

So, I was really blessed and honored to serve on the President’s Advisory Council. Certainly, I loved my relationship with the Napoleon Hill Foundation. And yes, In addition to the three books you mentioned, I’m in the midst of three more books: Think and Grow Rich: The Magic Key, Think and Grow Rich for The Next Generation, and Think and Grow Rich for Kids. There’s not much dust growing on maybe these days, but most importantly I love working with entrepreneurs. I have master-mentor program and I’ve had the opportunity to really work one-on-one with people taking their businesses to the next level, and it really has been more rewarding for me than for them, but it’s been a lot of fun, and we have such opportunity today that is really exciting to me to see companies really creating their own path, taking those paths less traveled, the why-nots of life. It kind of brings up from early to late, here I am.

Oh I love it. You reference that it was the worst business decision you made, that first jumping out of some more stable income, public accounting, corporate ladder career, to just going into this entrepreneurial business side of things. Why was it your worst business decision?

Well, great question because it was not the worst decision to go into entrepreneurship. I totally support entrepreneurship. But, the client had invested in the company that had been in bankruptcies, so we were pulling the company out of bankruptcy in order to preserve NOLs, and that gets a little on the technical side. Once I got up there – this company was in New Hampshire, had been in New York in Long Island, and it had move to Gonic, New Hampshire – and I found all kinds of corruption, and stress, and trauma. Of course, I’m there with my CPA certificate still pretty much fresh off the printing press and I’m an officer in the company realizing that, “Oh my gosh, what have I done?”

It was a good learning experience in the element and the need of due diligence. So, make a decision but do your homework and do due diligence. I don’t ever regret leaving and going into the entrepreneurial world because that’s really where my heart is. Thank you for asking that clarifying question.

Probably by doing that early, we have more time to sort of make up for some of those mistakes if we jump into the entrepreneurial game earlier and persist versus maybe later on where we might not take as many risks or whatever just because those lessons might have more of a life impact than when we’re younger.

Usually, it might be a little bit more dramatic when you’re a little older because we form habits. For me, I always thought that I had this warring side of me: the conservative accountant and the risk-taking entrepreneur, and indeed I do, and that’s part of being an entrepreneur, I think, understanding how to give credence to each side when appropriate. But, I think from a standpoint of — a lot of people are forced entrepreneurship because they get downsized, outsized, rightsized. It’s not quite as much of a why-not experience. It’s a, “I have to figure out how to eat and how to feed my family.”

For me, I was raised in a very entrepreneurial home. I was the first generation to go to college. My father has career in AB and then he was at Mt. Marietta but always on the side, we had real estate, rentals, he owned Orange Groves, he had a car lot, my mother had her own beauty shop. So, I was raised in that entrepreneurial setting and when I first left and got out of college, I had wanted nothing to do with it. I was like, “I want a safe, secure job. This is way too dramatic.

It didn’t take me but a few years to realize that that’s where my heart was. I kind of feed off from that stuff. I was able to get back on track at that much earlier age. I will tell you, the four years that I spent in Public Accounting were invaluable. I tell people, don’t go get a job, but get one that’s going to help you learn and educate you so that when you do choose a different path, you’ve gotten seasoned. Because, in those four years, I saw lots of companies do a lot of things right, and a lot of them do things not so right. It was an incredible education. I don’t regret one day of my entire life. I tell people, “Regret is just wasting precious time today.”

That’s so true. Well, you make a good point there. I think so much that it almost makes it sound like you have to choose or your one personality won over the other. The truth of the matter is you can be both, and it might be a good idea to start learning young, and then with some of that education you get by working in a sort established environment could really serve you when you go off on your own.

Well it also, it allows you to learn chores, it allows you to network, it allows you to get a little bit more experience on working in a group. Entrepreneurship can be very, very lonely. A lot of people don’t realize that until they get into that world and it’s like, “Oh my gosh.” If you don’t have that established peer network, it can get very, very lonesome. So, that’s something that I think was great value to me. I established lots of networks with them, my field, people that I could and bounce things off of, and I think that’s very important to have that kind of life experience.

I totally agree with you and you’re right. They don’t tell you that in the entrepreneur books, how lonely it can be. You make a good point. Sharon, you’ve a hand in two books that I can say honestly, radically saved my life. One was Rich Dad Poor Dad. It was the first money book I read after hitting my financial bottom, while I’m sitting in total financial despair, I don’t know how to get myself out of in $150,000 of credit card debt, just lost my income. I was a high-income earner then I lost that income, but I was in so much debt. Just went from thinking of I’d sort of hit the American lottery to the exact opposite of that.

I don’t remember how I stumbled across Rich Dad Poor Dad and this was in, probably right around year 2000 or so. When I read that book it just help shape some of my thinking, which is ironic because I, actually in college, studied accounting and finance and worked for Coopers for a little while myself. Didn’t go the CPA route; sort of went the entrepreneurial side before even though I was studying for that.

So here I was, I had this, sort of, let’s say, money background and I really learned money for the first time in Rich Dad Poor Dad in sort of that first set of books you guys wrote. The second book that I’d say has made such a huge impact in my life is the Think and Grow Rich, which I probably read soon after that. So, I’m just curious, what was your inspiration behind Rich Dad Poor Dad to writing that? Because, it was different. At least, what I was exposed to, the first money book that was talking money differently than how it’s normally thought.

Well, and that’s something even today. There’s still a lot of money books that are kind of in an old-world model. We actually, and most people don’t know this, “Rich Dad Poor Dad” was actually written as a brochure. When I first met Robert, he had this idea for the Cashflow board game and my background in the talking book industry had also done games. So, I helped him commercialized that and that’s when we became partners. Along the way, he wanted to charge $200 for this board game and I said, “No, we really need something a little cheaper that gets people interested in playing the game.”

So, we wrote Rich Dad Poor Dad not expecting it to be the first 15 books we’d do together. Just one book, and it was a brochure to give away to get people interested in the game. The world said, “No, no, your brand is not Cashflow, your brand is Rich Dad.” The whole concept of the book was again to open your mind to the simple financial facts.

The most wealthy people in the world all have one thing in common, they own assets. Yet, school teaches us how to work for a living. When you think about Cashflow Quadrant which was the second book we wrote, that making money as an employee or as a self-employed person, like a speaker, those incomes rely on you and the hours that you put into something. So, your income is limited to how much time you have and how much time you can work. But, on the right side of the Cashflow Quadrant is that of a business owner or an investor. On that side, your income is unlimited, but that’s income from assets. Whether paper assets, whether it’s a business you own, whether it’s real estate, whether it’s intellectual property that you’re getting income from, those assets create financial independence.

So, the whole concept of Rich Dad Poor Dad was to get people to understand the difference between active income, which is you working for a dollar, and passive income, which is your assets working for you. It sounds like a really simple concept. The problem is nobody taught it until we did Rich Dad Poor Dad. That’s the element, the basis of everything I do today whether it be through the Rich Dad series or now my work with Napoleon Hill Foundation is again I always say, “The sexiest word on earth is assets.” Assets is what will determine financial wealth and that’s what people need to concentrate on. Not how much money they’re making, but how many assets they’re building and how much income those assets are generating. That was the whole concept.

Some of the things that we did were a little in-your-face, your house is not an asset. We’re using the definition of asset as something that puts money in your pocket. Your house, from a bank’s perspective, they think of your house as an asset. From a standpoint of does that asset, does that house put money in your pocket, or take money out? So, from our perspective, don’t buy a bigger house. Keep your house modest. Put that extra income that you’re getting that raise into buying assets that generating revenue, and from that income, then you can buy a bigger house.

I remember that. I remember your house isn’t an asset, your car isn’t an asset, and it really shaped my thinking. It caused me to reflect on why and how I got in so much trouble and why I was in so much debt. I was really victim of Parkinson’s Law that the more income I made, the more money I spent. But then, I didn’t spend it with cash, I spent it with debt, basically. It’s just more debt payments every single month that really matched my income. When I read that, both Rich Dad and Cashflow Quadrant, it gave me the idea, move from income to more business. Seriously, those books really shaped me and sent me on a totally different trajectory than had I not started with your books.

I’m thrilled to hear that and absolutely honored that something that I wrote impacted you in such a positive way. I often ask, “How did you hear about Rich Dad Poor Dad?” and usually it’s because a friend gave it to them, an aunt, an uncle, a parent. Some say, “My kids gave it to me.” Rich Dad Poor Dad was a viral success before the internet.

Yes, it was, actually. That’s funny to think about. Yeah, I read it pre-internet. Now, that’s Rich Dad Poor Dad. There’s Think and Grow Rich, which, to me, is just a timeless masterpiece that I think everyone should read. I’ve required both of my children to read it. It’s something I read at least once a year just as a review because it never gets old. Those principles need to be — for me, I need to be reminded of them on a regular basis. Since you’re so close to Napoleon Hill Foundation, is there any back story that you can share about Napoleon Hill that most of us that read the book wouldn’t know?

Well, I think from a standpoint of those of us that have read Think and Grow Rich, a few years ago, I had the huge honor after I did my first book, Three Feet from Gold, the foundation called me and said, “We have this manuscript, we don’t know what to do with it.” It had been hidden away for 73 years. So, Napoleon Hill, when he released Think and Grow Rich in 1937, it was his life’s works. He spent 25 years on writing it. So, he released it in 1937, but he was frustrated. He says, “Even though people know what they’re supposed to do to become successful, they don’t do it,” and it’s so true. It almost feels like somebody’s talking to me when they say that. So many people we know, they know what they’re supposed to do but whether they’re a couch potato or whether it’s fear of failure or fear of success, they don’t do it. So, he was frustrated. He said even in his own life, he’d been on this roller coaster in his own life that he knew what he should do and sometimes he just didn’t do it.

So, in a few short months, he sat down and he wrote another book called Outwitting the Devil, and the title scared his wife to death. She forbid it from being published and it got shoved into a safe, and it didn’t see the light of day until after he died, she died. Her sister had it. When she died, her husband gave it to the foundation, and that was in 2009 when they called me and said, “They’d really like for you to look at this and tell us what you think we should do.” Literally, in a couple hours of reading it, it helped me changed my life.

It’s an incredible, heartfelt look at where we cause ourselves problems, and it’s really all about fear. Where does that fear come from? Many people say, “Oh, devil!” We’re a Christian group. I just said, “Just read it,” because he talks about there. You can think I’m talking to the real devil or an imaginary devil. The issue is will you derive any benefit from what I share.

It really is a transformational book, and the thing that I love about it, Krisstina, is that my goal of working with Napoleon Hill was to bring his teachings to current generations. Because when I first started working with them, young people, when I say that now, under the age of 50 is a lot younger, didn’t even know who he was. They didn’t understand. They’ve never heard of Think and Grow Rich.

So, we’ve been reinvigorating this messaging but Outwitting the Devil has taken lit of fire with the millennials. We have succeeded in our goal and, continuously, we have somebody now that’s making a movie out of the book, Outwitting The Devil, and it really is transformational work. It’s a little in-your-face and I think there was probably a higher power at work because if they had it come out 1938. it might have dampened the success of Think and Grow Rich. But, today people are actually reading Outwitting The Devil first then reading Think and Grow Rich and making incredible progress. It’s been really, really exciting.

That’s kind of the back story. A lot of people, a lot of rumors out there that Napoleon Hill died broke. He did not. He died with, I think, a million dollars in the bank. Things like that. So there’s lots of stories out there. But, he truly, if you think about one person, Napoleon Hill created our industry of personal development and personal wealth. He is the one who came up the idea of Mastermind. It was his concept. He originally wrote about the Law of Attraction in 1916. Of course, we look at the book, the secret in the movie and talk about the Law of Attraction, but it really originated with Napoleon Hill. He originated the term “pay yourself first”, which of course every financial planner or bank out there is using. Napoleon Hill created it. Even if somebody listening to this is not familiar with Napoleon Hill, you’re familiar with his work as a result to many of those things: Mastermind, pay yourself first, all of those things. He actually wrote the term for many of the fireside chats by President Roosevelt, one of which the most famous was, “There’s nothing to fear but fear itself”. That was written by Napoleon Hill. That’s a few little tidbits for you.

Yeah, I love that. How fascinating that the book was written — when was the Outwitting The Devil written and when was it released?

It was written 1938, and it was released in 2011.

2011 right. What I find fascinating again, that’s a must read. It’s another book that I’ve required both of my children to read and write a book report on. Actually, I had them write when it came out. So, however many years ago that’s been, so they were much younger. It was fascinating to see what their book reports were, what they took out of the book at a young age. For me, what I found amazing about that book is that for the year it’s written, it’s so apropos for today. I mean, every single one of those things. Did he have a crystal ball?

It’s pretty spooky actually. It’s spot on. For those people who are die hard Napoleon Hill fans, I had the honor of bringing it out and I annotated it. I say, the comments that I put in the book are in a different typeface so that people who are die hard Hill fans can ignore what I write and just read it over. But, understand that the whole concept was to bring this to a new generation. So, my comments were meant to compare when the book was written to today. So, to give that counterpoint so that we get a little more realism. Because, he would talk about the price of things and you think about a price of bread was eight cents. Back there, it’s not so much anymore.

It was interesting to your point. He was spot on in everything that he wrote, talking about education, talking about are your teachers teaching you out of fear or out of joy? Are you learning your religion through fear or through faith? All of those things. Are we eating things that are healthy for us? Totally with my mind what he was talking about the people that would start eating processed food back when there were no processed foods.

He foretold that we would be paying for our gas at gas tanks. That was in 1938 he wrote that. It was an interesting, interesting read and just for me, I was given the manuscript, I ran over to San Diego and rented a condo over the ocean, turned off all my phones and everything to read the manuscript. It was amazing to me because it was literally, first in ’38, it was typed on a manual typewriter and he had handwritten notes. It was such an awesome experience. I think I was only the fourth or fifth person to ever read it. It was an incredible experience and I’m so honored to have had a role in bringing that to the world.

If you look at Think and Grow Rich and Outwitting the Devil they’re both just filled with a-ha’s, lessons, takeaways, principles, however you want to call it. But if you had to take one out of each to share, what would be something you would share at one principle or take away out of each of those books?

Well, I think the synthesis of both book is in the personal success equation that we talk about in Three Feet from Gold. I really would like to highlight that because the personal success equation, start with your passion and your talent, and as we talked a little about Rich Dad, most of us stop there because we think it’s up to us. Love what you do, do what you love, and your talent, whatever you’re training yourself for. Of course, my passion didn’t come out of love, but out of anger for not teaching people about financial education. That was my passion and my talent was my experience as a CPA, my experience knowing finance and accounting and my experience in publishing. I was able to combine those two elements very quickly.

But, in order to truly be successful, your personal success equation just starts there. P plus T and then there’s times A, which is times association, and this is what they don’t teach us in books. It’s very important to surround yourself with people who want you to succeed. Have mentors who are there to help get you to the next level, have peers around you that can help give you some feedback. And that power of association, when I work with company CEOs and their company starts stagnating, I go, “When was the last time you went to a new networking group?” Expanding your horizon, expanding your association brings new vitality into your organization. So, that’s P plus T, passion plus talent times A, association, and then there’s another times A, which is action. It comes back to people know what they’re supposed to do, but they don’t do it.

Taking the right action, and action is all about the fortune’s in the follow up, right? The action. Taking the right actions each and every day towards your goals. We almost went to press with that as the formula. I say now, there’s still something that is making these individuals that we were interviewing different, and it was plus F, and that F is for faith. For most of us, that F is fear, and that’s what holds us back. But, these people had faith in not just themselves, but faith in what they were doing.

The most successful businesses do one of two things: solve a problem or serve a need. So, every business owner in the morning, every morning, remind yourself of what problem are you solving, or what need are you serving? That gives you that why-not, that gives you that energy and inspiration from within that what you’re doing is really needed and important, and that faith that what you’re doing is needed and necessary, faith in yourself that you are able to do it and make a difference in other people’s lives, and it’s that faith that will get you through the valleys, get you through the tough times.

Fear does one of two things: it paralyzes or motivates. And most of us, fear paralyzes. So, we want to, through education, through reading Think and Grow Rich, through reading Outwitting the Devil, through reading and educating yourself and surrounding yourself with people that want you to be successful, you’re going to see your fear turn into faith. I tell women in Think and Grow Rich for Women, one of the biggest issues – I’ve gone around the globe, so it doesn’t matter what your address is or what language you speak – women tend to have lower self-confidence. I say, “Let’s acknowledge that that’s an issue.”

So, while you’re building your self-confidence, surround yourself with girlfriends who think you’re fantastic, and help let them bolster your self-confidence as you’re becoming more confident. I’m a better salesperson for you than I am for myself. I recognize that, so I have to bring in marketing support and sales support, because it’s not something that I like to do. So, I’ve chosen that. I recognize my weaknesses, and I hire my weaknesses, and elevate my strengths, and that’s something that every business owner needs to be really a critical eye on to really understanding where your strengths are.

I love that. I love the P plus T times A times A times F. The A for association, it reminds me of what we were just talking about is sometimes the danger of going off to be an entrepreneur, solopreneur, spending too much time by yourself and not building that network, and spending too much time alone in front of the screen.

I see this so often, Krisstina. People that have been very successful within accounting or with law, they’ve been in a peer group where they’re one of many experts within a field, and then all of a sudden, they get the bug for entrepreneurship and they go off on their own, and they lose their own personal identity, because they’re not the manager of their law firm anymore. They’re out here trying to start their own business. When people retire, all of a sudden, their identity, they were an engineer. Now, they’re retired, so they feel like they’re lost.

So, for entrepreneurship, it’s really important because you are a lone ranger. As a solopreneur you need to make sure you surround yourself with people that are going to continue feeding you. Not just encouragement, but feeding you energy, and their energy, and their excitement for what you’re doing, and it helps keep you motivated and keep you on the right path.

So, that’s the synthesis out of Think and Grow Rich, something similar for Outwitting the Devil?

Yeah, absolutely. All about that fear to faith. Outwitting the Devil is about how to conquer fear that’s holding you back. Because, it talks about that definiteness of purpose, finding your why or your why not that keeps you going, that keeps you motivated, and then understanding that you can control your time, your environment, how important that is, how are you spending your time, who are you spending with, and that self-discipline, right? Kind of a negative connotation, but really what it talks about is how you could form a new habit. What happens is most of us form habits that are not productive. So, you need to break that cycle, and if you get yourself into a pattern that’s a productive pattern, it becomes a habit.

So, we hear the concept, “The rich get richer, the poor get poorer.” Well, that’s because the rich have figured out how, and so they keep doing what they’ve learned, and so yes, they keep getting richer. So, we want to make sure that education is available to anybody who wants to create success in their life so that they can start doing the right things often enough and for long enough that it creates a lifetime of success.

One thing, if I remember correctly, with Outwitting the Devil is the concept of drifting. Would you expound on that a little bit?

One of my favorite things. In the book, and of course, it’s a parable because the book is set up as an interrogation of the devil. So, I often compare it to that movie, “A Few Good Men,” when the guy is on the witness stand. So, that’s kind of the visual that I have in my mind. So, the devil has to share his expertise, and he talks about how he uses mind warfare, basically, and that 98% of people are drifters, and only 2% are going to be successful. It’s like I compare it to we talk about somebody that says, “Whatever.” They kind of like go with the flow. “Where do you want to go to eat?” “I don’t care.”

A drifter kinds of gets into that what they call harmonic rhythm, which is a negative connotation. They basically allow themselves to be abused by life. Things happen to them, they’re not taking control of who they are and what they want to do. So, they’re not controlling the most important asset we have, and that’s our mind. So, the 2% that control their mind, the devil basically says, in Outwitting the Devil, “I’ll leave you alone because you’re going to be successful, and I can’t burrow into that reign.” But, for everybody else, he understands what gets you, what rings your bell, what pulls those strings, what makes you nervous.

It’s not in the book, but something that I found since I released the book and when I talk to groups, particularly for women, the term “worry”. The definition of the word “worry” is to pray for what you do not want, and it really is. It was very impactful for me in my life because I am a champion worrier. I came by it very legitimately. My mom was quite the worry wart. So, now I catch myself when I get into what I call — when I’m in one of those states, I call it my own little personal Rototiller, because you just make yourself physically sick. I go, “You know, instead of concentrating on the negative outcome, praying for what you do not want,” I can catch myself now and say, “Stop, Sharon, wait, instead of concentrating on what you don’t want, let’s turn that brain a little bit. Let’s snap it and say, ‘Let’s focus on what I do want to have happen,'” and when I do that, the outcome is amazing. It’s like you completely change yourself from negative vibration, negative energy to one of hope and positive energy, and it impacts everybody around you. So, that’s a great lesson from Outwitting the Devil is to refocus your thoughts and not have fear, but have faith that you’re going to succeed.

I love that. Let’s talk about Think and Grow Rich for Women. A big portion of my audience are women listeners, and I have a money course, and a good majority of those that take my money course are women. So, I really love the topic of women and money. What do you notice? What inspired you to write the book, Think and Grow Rich for Women, and from that, what do you notice are differences? I’m guessing you wrote the book because women must, from your experience, look at money differently than women, or treat it differently or something. So, tell us a little bit about the thinking behind Think and Grow Rich for Women.

Sure. As we’ve already stated, the original Think and Grow Rich came out in 1937, and there were no women in business at that time. I mean, there were a few women nurses and teachers. But, there were no women leaders in business. So, there were no women referred to in the book, Think and Grow Rich. But, I believe the steps to success are the same for men and women.

So, why I did I do Think and Grow Rich for Women then? Well, I did it because over a period of years, after we released Outwitting the Devil, I started seeing just so much negativity out there. We were constantly complaining about not enough women CEOs, no wage equality, men are standing in our way, they’re holding us back, and I actually got angry about it, because I said, “You know, as women, yes, there are still things that need to change, but we’ve come so far.” I wanted to change the dialogue from negativity to one of celebration of women.

Yes, we may still only have 22 women CEOs and Fortune 500s. But, in 2000, there were only 2. So, we’ve come a long way. We’ve made progress. Yes, there are men that hold us back, but there are many more men that are our champions and support us. It’s not women versus men. Studies have shown when women and men are both at the table, miracles happen. It’s the combination of the brilliance of both, and we think differently.

I have a slide that shows a brain map of a man and a woman, and a man tends to be much more strategic-thinking, much more linear, and they tend to operate in one side, one half of their brain. Women, we women are great problem solvers, and we are constantly back and forth. We’re utilizing both sides of our brain. So, imagine the results you get when you have all of that expertise: great problem solvers and decision makers that help us get more things done more quickly.

The whole concept of Think and Grow Rich for Women is to honor the original book. Every chapter is outlined the same way as the original book. I start off with the synopsis of Hill’s message for that chapter, and then I look at it through the eyes of success for women who have used that in their own success. Then, I have a series of quotes from women of history, women of different walks of life, politicians, and CEOs, and entrepreneurs.

I really wanted to bring a wealth of knowledge of women supporting each other, so that as a woman who reads the book, or even a man who reads the book, you may read one story and say, “Easy for her to say. That’s not me.” But then, the next story within the book, you go, “Wow, if she can do it, so can I.” I have over 300 women highlighted in the book, and it was such an incredibly fun project for me because I discovered how little we have out there, how few quotes are out there. I have a bunch of quotes in the book on each one of the topics of Think and Grow Rich.

So, my goal was not to say, “Women are different than men,” but they are. My goal was to say, “Let’s celebrate each other. Let’s celebrate one another. Let’s stop attracting negativity. When we constantly criticize and complain, the Law of Attraction means what? We’re going to get negative results. So, let’s change our dialogue to one of celebrating what we’ve accomplished. Is there more work to do? You bet there is.

But, even when I wrote the book, I think we were at 15.9% on board seats or something, and today it’s 17%. So, there is still progress being made. Maybe not as fast as many of us would like, but it’s happening, so let’s celebrate the progress that women are making. And for all of the women that are learning from you, bravo! One of the biggest areas that women tend to put their head in the sand is in the field of money. So, you and I share that passion. I’ve created the Money School, I’ve created money programs, you have money programs. That’s what we need to keep doing. Allowing women to come in and understand how important it is for them to not just understand money, but to understand where they are financially and where they need to go.

Many women who are married don’t have credit in their own name. We just lost my brother-in-law a few weeks ago, and his wife has nothing in her name, and it’s like, “Ugh, I should have been teaching my own family,” right? But, it’s so important for women to establish that credit in their own name and understand where they are. Many women sign their tax return and they don’t really even look at it. They don’t know what’s in it. So, that’s my first admonishment to every woman listening to this is get your tax return and understand it. Go through it. It’s a great source of information that can help you know where you are financially.

I love that, and I do come across a lot of conversation, and so much story that predominantly comes from women is this story of, “I’m not good with money. That’s my husband’s thing,” or, “I’m afraid of it.” So, what do you notice, do you think, when it comes to women and money, places for women, like in general to grow?

Well, I think, and I’m sure — I have not taken your course, but I’m sure you get the exact same feedback. As you see people from the beginning of taking your course to the end, they start telling you how much more confident they are, how much stronger they are, how much more empowered they feel. Because, what happens is we’ve all heard that term “knowledge is power”. But, when it comes to money, it really is. Even when you find out something that’s not good news, at least you know so you can start charting a course.

Like, yourself, you knew you were $150,000 in debt, so you kind of knew you had dug a big hole, and then you can start charting that course. But, many women don’t even have a clue. So, the first step is to figure out where you are today, and then be able to make those small decisions. We talk about setting these big goals. Well, I say, “Let’s start with little wins.” Start with one or two things that you can do today to make your financial situation better. We talked about cutting up the credit cards. Well, it’s not the credit card; it’s the person holding the credit card. You can’t cut yourself up and you can’t put yourself in the freezer, but you can start doing different things and thinking differently.

What do you have to say to women at large? Can you share why you think it’s really important for women to get some knowledge about money, not to just abdicate to the husband or the planner? Why is it, in your opinion, so important for women to become confident with money?

Well, it’s absolutely vital, and I’m going to give you a few stats, and these stats change over time, but they’re pretty consistent. We have probably all heard 50% of marriages end in divorce. If that’s not proof positive that you need to know where you are, then you’re dreaming. Then, the good news is that women tend to outlive their husband by seven years. But, the bad news is they don’t have a clue about money, they’re easily taken advantage of, they tend to lose it. Women, when they retire, or they become widows tend to fall into the poverty rate at a much higher rate than men because they don’t understand money.

And the studies have proven that women who educate themselves are better investors than men, and women that take that time to learn and become more confident when it comes to money is my tagline, which is really a mantra. When it comes to money, you’re either a master of your money, or a slave to it. There’s really not much in between. And just a little education can help you step out of slavery and into money mastery, and that’s my goal in life, and I know that’s your goal in life in your programs, and we have to help each other to make sure that we get the education we need. Because, in the next 30 years, 40 trillion dollars will be inherited by women around the globe. With that comes awesome responsibility, and that awesome responsibility is not just how to receive it. We want to know how to employ it, how to make it grow, and how to make it last for generations to come.

So, it’s not just a good thing for women to do. It’s a requirement. It’s imperative for we, as women, to stand in our own power and educate ourselves so that we can create positive change in the economy, and we can’t do that by putting our heads in the sand and not understanding money, because then we give ourselves up to it, and we become slaves to it. Our goal, I know your goal, and my goal both, are to create masters out of the women we know.

Yeah, and I’m guessing the same for you is there’s so much when somebody — everyone, but a lot of women is that when they first enter the course, they’re scared to death, they almost feel feelings of shame, or guilt, or, “I’m not good enough,” all these sort of stories, because we just don’t get educated on money. Like, how would we be good at something we’ve never had any education on? But, the fun thing is to see the transformation and the comments are like, “Wow, this isn’t so hard. Wow, this is actually pretty easy. Oh my gosh, this feels really good.”

I think it’s just maybe there’s some backstory like it’s harder than we think it is, or, “Maybe I’m not smart enough to figure this out, so I’d rather just push it away.” But, the truth of the matter is once you learn a few principles and put some of these things into practice, money is not difficult.

No, and again, it comes back to fear. Fear is paralysis, and that’s that fear of money because they don’t understand it, they don’t have enough. We all want to be financially independent. I haven’t met one person who doesn’t want to be financially independent, and yet we don’t take action to create that independence. So, as women, we tend to put our head in the sand, and that’s something we have to stop. We have to realize that if not us, who? The knight in shining armor and the white horse is getting fewer and farther between, and we want to make sure we become our own white knight and be able to stand in our own power.

I love that. Now, how much do you notice, like people’s resistance to money has to do with their upbringing, and how do you advise that we sort of break outside of that old mindset, or narrative, or these feelings that we have about money maybe being a bad thing, because I see that as so much the resistance that holds a lot of people back, and especially women for some reasons.

One of my favorite topics, because when I’m speaking, I always ask at the very beginning, “What did your parents say to you about money?” I hear, “Money doesn’t grow on trees, pinch your pennies,” “Who do you think we are? The Rockefellers?” my generation, of course, “We can’t afford it,” and I said, “What do all of those comments have in common?” They are all negative. As children, we hear money, negative, money, negative, money, negative. So, in our subconscious, we have negativity when it comes to money. That negativity turns into fear of never having enough, and if we’re successful, it turns into fear of losing it.

We don’t even know where that’s coming from, and once we start acknowledging and recognizing that, yes, you’re right. My parents always said, “We can’t afford it.” Well, just that comment “we can’t afford it” closes your mind. A negative statement is a statement. You can feel yourself drawing within. But, if you could just change it to instead of saying, “I can’t afford it,” turn it into a question and say, “How can I afford it?” Well, that opens your mind. That absolutely keys into your entrepreneurial spirit because you want to find an answer. So, it gets you bigger than life, and it makes you excited about finding how you can afford it.

Many of us that are listening right now have probably said it to ourselves, “We can’t afford it,” or to our children. So, I go, “Stop it, just stop it,” and now change the way you talk to your kids about money. Say, “You want that toy? How are you going to afford it? What are you going to do to earn it?” and then as they’re doing it, start letting them understand time versus money of, “Is that toy going to be of long-term benefit to you or should maybe you do something different with that money?”

But, again, it’s all about how we communicate to ourselves as well as to our children. Because, that negativity about money is ingrained, and until we open our mind and release it and realize where it came from, it’s going to be something that kind of nags us forever.

Yeah, and sort of controls us. That’s a good segue. You’re doing a lot of work with kids and teenagers with money, right? So, on the same topic, we’re maybe giving these limiting mindsets about money to our children without even knowing it. So, what would be some advice, maybe, to parents in how to maybe talk to their kids about money to not create, sort of, these negative mindsets that you just talked about, combined with what would be some coaching for teenagers?

Absolutely. Well, a lot of times, parents don’t want to talk to their kids about money because they don’t want their kids to understand that they are in financial stress themselves. This is not a commercial message, but this is why I created my board game called Thrive Time for Teens. It’s got a lot of humor in it, and it’s a safe environment for parents to sit down and go through the elements and the conversations about money with their teens without it having to get too personal, and it introduces the concept of assets, and businesses, and doing well, good behavior. It’s a money and life game, and it really is engaging with teenagers at the level where they have fun, right?

It’s not just sitting down and, “Let’s teach you the law of averages,” right? It’s crazy, it’s boring, and they go, “Why do I need that?” But, what I want to do is make sure we engage them where they live and what’s important to them. So, the game talks about being with your friends, or getting a car, getting a job, getting a raise, starting your own business, employing your friends. Again, it’s something that’s relevant to them.

That’s one of the biggest issues with teenagers is we’re not being relevant to them. We’re either talking down to them or we’re dictating to them, and we need to allow them to have that discovery on their own. In the game Thrive Time, they don’t realize their game sheet is actually financial statements, but we don’t tell them ahead of time. They learn that afterwards. Again, they have the opportunity to make choices and realize that every choice they make has a consequence. Maybe some of them are positive, or not.

So, the whole goal to winning the game is making positive choices and realizing that life rewards us when we make good choices. Life holds us back when we make bad choices, and something as simple as that, these kids, many of them have never been exposed to it. I teach it in many high schools around the country, and the kids will say, “My mom and dad need to play this game.” But, it’s something that, again, they have the opportunity at a young age.

I have an adopted granddaughter. She’s a dear friend, and she’s two, and she can speak three languages because at the youngest age possible, to teach your kids about money allows them the greatest opportunity for success. Some of the things, you just let them fail. Let them experience recovery. Too many people in this world – and I’ll get in my soapbox, so you’re going to have to pull me back – we put our children in a bubble. Everybody gets a trophy. We don’t want them to experience failure. That’s just a huge disservice. Our children need to experience the fact that if they fall down that they can get up, and they can get up and be stronger for it.

I wish more people had failures when they were still easy to fix, when they were teenagers, as opposed to adults when they end up with – excuse me, using you as an example – $150,000 in credit card debt. So, allow your child when they’re teenagers. Maybe you get them a credit card that has a very small amount on it and they have to pay it back every month, that they understand the consequences if they don’t. Or, if they have an allowance, that when they run out of money before they run out of month, they don’t do anything, instead of mom handing them an extra $20 so that there’s no consequences for them running out of money.

So, part of it is, as adults, we need to make sure that we’re giving them the opportunity to create the greatest life that they deserve, and that’s by learning how to be positive, how to recover, how to fail and get back up.

I love that. So, it sounds like that it’s important for us to learn about money as adults since we didn’t learn it in school, unless we’re one of the few whose parents did teach us something. But, I found that to be a very small minority. But, one, to learn about money so we can build out own wealth, and lifestyle, and financial independence, and freedom. But then, also to be an example and to teach our children so that that can continue versus even if we didn’t do it for ourselves, we’re probably hurting our children by not learning about it and practicing it that they’re going to carry on and make the same mistakes, and so on, and so on.

Exactly. We talk about giving your children a head start in life. The best way to do that is to educate them about money. Because, as much as I’m still working hard, we’ve gotten laws passed here in Arizona, the children are still not being taught about money in school, and it’s criminal. It’s really a horrible situation because money is a life skill. We’re teaching them about condoms in school but we’re not teaching them about money, and whether you’re a janitor, a CEO, or an entrepreneur, we all have to deal with money.

It’s something that if it’s not going to be taught to your children’s school, it is absolutely imperative that we, as adults, make sure that the young people that we care about are given those tools, because that’s what levels the playing field. Children that I work with out of the inner cities, they are smarter about money than many of these rich kids because they’re taking the time to learn, and they have the greatest opportunity to succeed because financial education is what levels the playing field.

You’re doing such amazing work to try to get financial education into all schools, so I really applaud you, because you’re right. That’s where it starts. I mean, dang, don’t we all wish we would have had money school versus making at least all the mistakes I’ve made with money. I mean, I think of where I would be today had I had some money sense that my children have now that I had to make a decade or so of terrible mistakes that have set me back that much to — it’s a different place when you start from zero than when you start from negative 150 or so.

Well, I applaud you for teaching your kids about money, because you’re far ahead of the game. Most parents are not still. So, thank you.

That’s what I’d be curious about what you think too that money’s been an open topic at our table since the time they could walk, and so it’s never been a topic that’s been avoided. We talk about our investments in front of them, we talk about income in front of them. It’s just been a normal conversation, and I’ve gotten some criticism about that sometimes over the years. But, the kids actually know what different financial distinctions are, and I think they’re both young adults. They’re both college age, so we’ll see what they may or may not do with that. But, how do you feel about that where money is an open dialogue at the table?

Well, I think it’s inherently important for young people to understand, again, whether you’re a master of money or a slave to it. Communication is the key. So, communication of money, assets, types of income, the importance of giving back, charity, all of those are conversations that should be going on with young people. Obviously, what you say to a 9-year-old is different than what you say to a 19-year-old. A 19-year old who’s been raised in the lap of luxury, you start telling them about money, they may be asking for a lot more because they haven’t learned responsibility along the way.

A lot of it is that open dialogue of money comes hand-in-hand with teaching them responsibility at home as they grow up. We talk about allowance. There’s personal responsibility like brushing your teeth and showering. You shouldn’t get an allowance for that. Helping with the household chores, you shouldn’t get an allowance for that. When you go over and above and you do other things, yes there’s opportunities for an allowance. But, allowing a child to understand those different responsibilities and that they are part of the family and they have those responsibilities helps build that integrity, and it has nothing to do with money, but it will definitely impact how they deal with money in their future, because they will have that self-confidence of knowing that they are part of a unit, and they are contributing, and with that, comes responsibility. So, when they start looking at money, they’re going to realize that they are responsible for using that money wisely.

There are some universal money laws, principles that are foundational, fundamental, never-changing that, again, because we’re not educated about money, I think most people just are unaware of them. So, what are some money principles that you sort of abide by and teach?

Buy, build, or create assets. Buy, build, or create assets, understand the difference between good debt and bad debt. Good debt is debt that you acquire in creating, building, or buying assets. That’s good debt. Stay away from bad debt. Good credit, bad credit, the same thing. Understanding that your credit score is your report card in life, and if your credit score is low, then there are things that you’ve done to create that.

So, each and every one of us – and this is not a money principle, this is a life principle – is where we are today in our life based on the choices we made, not somebody else. We have far too many victims in our world. We are, each and every one of us, where we are today because of the choices we made before today. If we want something different in life, we want something more, then we need to make different choices starting today moving forward. Because, each and every one of us has the opportunity to achieve great success, and the only thing that limits us are the decisions and the choices that we make.

That’s perfect. Well, that sort of brings us into the home run here, and I have a couple more questions for you. I ask this one of most of my guests, and especially those that have had such enormous success like you have. I mean, your resume is long, your bio is just filled with these incredible accomplishments, and you’ve had quite a career as a businesswoman, an entrepreneur, a CEO, an author, I mean, we can go on and on.

It tends to be sort of like Facebook these days where we only see all the perfect things, the long list of all the greatness in life. But, most of the people I know, there’s been crisis, there’s been some dark moments in that journey, that long journey of acquiring that long list of accomplishments that usually isn’t exposed, which makes it seem, I think, for many that, “Oh, their life has been just one easy accomplishment after another.”

So, with that said, is there anything, like a big failure, or crisis, or something where you didn’t even know if you could make it through, but you did and it totally changed the trajectory of where you — sort of your trajectory and how it’s brought you to where you are today?

Well, yes. I don’t usually talk about this, Krisstina, but December 2012, I lost my youngest son. Prior to that, my breakup with my partners in Rich Dad had been pretty traumatic, and it was the right thing for me to do. I never looked back, and as I said, I wouldn’t have been able to have the experiences with the Napoleon Hill Foundation had I not made that decision to leave. But, that was kind of a traumatic time.

All things stop when you lose your child, and it’s very difficult to get out of bed in the morning, very difficult to keep going. Part of my coping mechanism was actually to throw myself into work, and I wrote a bunch of books that year hiding. That’s something that is not a sorority I want anybody to be in, because you’re not supposed to outlive your children. But, it is something that has really, really impacted me at a really deep level. It’s why I stopped doing as much large speaking and writing books and more of the mentoring, because I had a huge hole in my heart, of course. Now my husband and I, we mentor individual entrepreneurs and business owners that are already successful wanting to get to the next level, helping them understand, truly, how to get to the next level, making the introductions, opening those doors for them, and that is something that brings me peace, and love, and starts filling my heart again.

It’s what life is all about. Life is very, very, very short, and it’s something that, each and every day, we have to be thankful for the opportunities that we have. Things that used to bother me don’t bother me anymore. Things that I used to be really stressed out about, I don’t get stressed out about them anymore. Because, when you have an occasion like that, it brings everything else into perspective.

Absolutely, well I’m sorry, and thank you for sharing that. One final question, and I ask this one of all my guests, and you’ve done a lot of this, but I noticed there’s so many myths out there that people just believe to be true, and they’re sort of sabotaging lives, thwarting big ambitions, or goals, or dreams, so I like to always do a little bit of myth busting. Personally, professionally, what sort of myth do you bump up against all the time where you just want to scream, saying, “Oh my gosh, if I hear that one more time, I am going to scream.” But, is there a myth that you’d like to bust that you bump into over, and over, and over again?

So many. Where do I begin? I think the biggest one is that it takes money to make money. Certainly, the way that the world is changing today, 30 years ago, Fortune 500 companies were 20% intangible, 80% tangible assets like property, plant, and equipment. Today, it’s the inverse. Fortune 500 companies are 20% tangible property, 80% intangible, which means intellectual property. So, that is really the source of the greatest wealth today and in the future is what you can come up with up here. Every one of us has had great ideas. The question is whether or not we’ve made money from those ideas.

So, I really want people to understand that they have the opportunity, again, to solve a problem or serve a need. They have everything they need right now today to create success in their lives, and it’s all about realizing that it doesn’t take money to make money. It takes action, understanding, and creating and building assets that creates wealth.

That’s great. You know, you have a — I don’t know if it’s a book or what it is, but it’s the idea of, how you say, using other people’s money?

Yeah, other people’s money, yes, my husband’s book, OPM. OPM, Other People’s Money, and my husband wrote that, yes.

That’s great. Alright, well, you have been a wealth of information, just like every time I talk to you. I mean, I have a full notebook page of notes here. Anyway, thank you, and I write the notes from my own thinking. So, obviously, everybody will listen to it and get their own takeaways, but thank you. How do people find you? I mean, obviously, you have so many books that people need to read and I love that the Thrive for the kids is a game. I mean, that’s something all teenagers should probably do. But, what’s the best way to find Sharon and your work?

Well, my website is sharonlechter.com, L-E-C-H-T-E-R. The game, Thrive Time for Teens, you can get it from my website, or it’s on Amazon, and of course, all my books are on Amazon. I have a podcast called “Your Money, Your Business, Your Life”. It’s free, so you can access additional information through my website or through iTunes. I’m on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn all under Sharon Lechter, so I’m really easy to find, and I welcome all of you to connect with me. So, thank you so much, Krisstina, for all that you do to support not just women, but everyone really, and your own children to create more financial independence.

Well, thank you, and we’ll put a link to all of your good work in the show notes. Just final question, what’s next for you?

Well, I’m right now, actually behind on finishing three books. I mentioned them earlier, Think and Grow Rich: The Magic Key. We’ve done some interviews over the last year talking to successful people about their secret sauce. Then, the couple that are my passion projects, and that is Think and Grow Rich for millennials, for the Next Generation, and Think and Grow Rich for Kids. Think and Grow Rich for the Next Generation will be written addressing them, and then Think and Grow Rich for Kids will actually be addressed to both parents and children so that we bring those teachings to those markets so that young people can get started very early and very quickly.

That, and my biggest project is the mentoring that I do. We have a program for Master Mentors. For more information, just contact me [email protected] We don’t take that many. I have four spots open right now. Where we truly step into your business with you side-by-side, and it’s not a tailored program. It is a custom program based on where you are today and where you want to go, and we support you in finding the resources, finding those connections to take your business to the next level. It’s something that we really love to do, and we would welcome anybody that’s interested in talking to us further to contact us at [email protected]

Wow. Well, that’s almost an offer that one can’t refuse. Well, thank you so much for your time. I appreciate you very much.

Well, thank you, Krisstina, and I appreciate you too. What a great hour it’s been. Thank you.

You’re welcome.

And so ends another episode of the Wealthy Wellthy Life. This was one more millionaire strategy that will make you wealthy while keeping you healthy. Before you leave, remember that if you want to get it all together, then make sure to sign up for a free online training session at howto.money. You will learn my signature formula for transforming your life from debt to multi-millionaire. It’s already helped thousands of others, and it can help you too, and it’s the only moneymaking system that makes your health your number one asset. So, if you’re curious how it all works, visit howto.money and sign up today. Remember, it’s free, so why not invest some time in learning “how to money”? Again, that’s howto.money. H-O-W-T-O dot M-O-N-E-Y. As always, be sure to subscribe to this podcast to make sure that you catch next week’s millionaire strategy. Signing off, this is Krisstina Wise, your personal guide to having it all. Here’s to living a Wealthy Wellthy Life. I’ll see you next time.

#49 – Dana Claudat: Your Environment Affects Your Success

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Episode Summary

Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life with Krisstina Wise. Dana Claudat studied Art History at Stanford University and is now a Pyramid School Feng Shui consultant. She helps not only design homes, but design lifestyles that ‘flow’. Your home is a reflection of what’s happening inside you, so it’s time to declutter and create space!

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You can also click on the time stamps below to jump to those specific points in the conversation.

What We Covered

  • 02:50 – Who is Dana?
  • 11:30 – How important is aesthetics in all areas of our life?
  • 17:15 – Is it true that a cluttered home also affects our energy levels?
  • 18:55 – What kind of story does your house tell you about yourself?
  • 21:55 – Clutter and debt are somewhat the same, they make people feel heavy and trapped.
  • 26:15 – Why do we have such strong attachments to things?
  • 28:25 – Everyone wants to feel happy, but the more clutter there is in our lives, the more we let it pile up.
  • 31:05 – How does Dana handle the pack rats who can’t throw things away?
  • 35:45 – Why can some people let things go easily whereas others simply can not?
  • 40:45 – What is Feng Shui?
  • 45:55 – Space is so important in all areas of our life. For example, mindfulness is all about creating space in your mind.
  • 51:35 – Where does spirituality come into all of this?
  • 57:40 – What tips does Dana have for those who want to declutter/ add more Feng Shui into their lives?
  • 01:01:00 – What are Dana’s money beliefs?
  • 01:04:20 – Dana busts some myths!

Tweetables

Links Mentioned

The Tao of Dana
Power vs. Force, by David R. Hawkins

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Read Full Transcript

You are at the intersection of wealth, health, and happiness. Welcome to the Wealthy Wellthy Life.

Today, I tackle money and health wealth with Dana Claudat. Dana is the master of designing of one’s personal space and of Feng Shui. She’s an expert about how these things impact overall health, wealth, and happiness. In her words, Dana’s mission is to help people rewrite their mission to give more of themselves to life and get more of what they want out of life.

Moving furniture around and decluttering to change your life might sound like a crazy idea, but Dana has developed a deep knowledge of science behind why and how it actually works. In her work, she’s integrated everything from quantum physics, holistic healing, management theory, art history, philosophy, sociology, even aromatherapy to help people live better lives. This was such an interesting and awe-inspiring interview. I bet you’ll leave this one with some new and exciting takeaways about health, wealth, and happiness. Enjoy

Alright Dana. It is so great to be here with you today. Thank you very much for taking your time to have this conversation.

Thank you. I’m excited. This is really fun.

So you’re in LA, right?

Yes, I am.

And I love your backdrop there. Are you in your house, your office?

Yeah, the sun is finally shining today. We’ve had like Seattle weather.

Yeah, you guys aren’t used to that, are you? I mean, you live for the sunshine.

No, but all my plants are so happy. You could see them all. They’re all so psyched. They’ve all been like so humid and so fantastic. The only one not psyched is me. I haven’t been out of my house in so long.

You look great. Well, thank you for being here. We were introduced through our mutual friend, Kim Love, and I think we both adore her for the same reasons, so a big shout-out to Kim. But she said, “Krisstina, I think you need to meet my friend, Dana. I just think you guys will hit it off and X, Y, Z.” So I do my natural thing, I go to Google, look you up, and never know what I’m going to find. I’m like, “Oh my gosh, this woman seems amazing,” and I really love your work, and your message, and how you’re sharing your work with others that tends to be somewhat unique and not unique. Anyway, I would love to delve into that a little bit, if you’re open to it.

Thank you. I’m so psyched. I’m so honored and flattered.

Yay! Well, before we get started, I’m going to ask you a few questions or whatever. Tell us your story, sort of what brought you to be where you are right now with your current work.

I never would have expected that I would be doing what I’m doing right now. If you had told me 10 years ago that I should be doing this, I would like, “How, what? Are you crazy? There’s no way.” There wasn’t even a world of this that existed yet. I went to Stanford. I had a very non-traditional career path. I studied art history. I had an idea walking up and down Palm Drive at Stanford. I used to talk to a friend of mine and just say, “I just want to know every artist in the world.”

That was my career aspiration. I had no sense of what I was actually going to do and I actually needed to make money and needed these things. I wasn’t one of those kids at Stanford that who had the luxury of just figuring it out for a few years. So, I went to New York, got a lot of odd jobs, and made it my mission to get to know all of these artists and find all the best art people in the world. I got very lucky and found a whole lot of the people that I really admired and somehow got to learn from a lot of them. So, it was like this really unique thing. What I didn’t understand was how to turn it into something that benefited me, because every part of the art world is like dealing or curating where it’s very institutional and all of that stuff felt very confining to me.

Ultimately, through a lot of twists and turns, I wound up doing commercials and moving to Los Angeles and it was like some way I could pay the bills while I figure out what I’m going to do with my desire to write and share all of this stuff about art. The thing that always got me about art was it creates change in life. For people who say art is extra, and I know that we’ll probably get to that later, art is not extra. Art is something that’s extremely important even in real estate, your background, the aesthetics of a home, sell the home. It’s part of what makes it feel like a home. You can’t say that aesthetics don’t matter or we would all be living in the same house. It’s such a big thing. I’m looking at all the big paintings behind you and I’m like, “You’ve got it. You know that aesthetics do matter.”

So I just had this sense and because I grew up very alternative to a lot of my friends, I was very poor. My mom raised us as a single mom. I always had a sense of being self-determined and I realize that boundaries and borders that people impose upon themselves don’t have to be real. I wanted, somehow, to mix this message of art which is all about breaking these boundaries and communicating with people with this idea that you could actually create your own reality. I was doing it. I went from this little town in New Jersey to Stanford and graduated with honors. I did all this stuff. I wanted to do it for other people because I would just constantly be so frustrated that people work were stuck and they couldn’t figure it out. By no means did I have all the answers. It took me a very long time and a lot of hard circumstances to get to where I am. I still don’t have it figured out. I’m still working on it every day.

I started accumulating, as I went, all of these tools. What happened was, in my great hustle through Los Angeles, I wound up getting extremely sick. I pushed myself to every single limit doing all kinds of freelance work while I was exploring all of these detoxes and cleanses and all kinds of things. I just really burned myself out. Wound up in the hospital with an autoimmune crisis and had to stay in my house for months. When I was in my house – and I’m sorry I’m talking so much but this is kind of how it happened – I looked around and I was like, “Who lives here?” I didn’t even put things up on the walls. I didn’t really feel like I did any more than like unpacked my clothes. I had no sense of being at home anywhere. In L.A., that’s a very common thing since this is a very in transient city in many way because so many people in the arts come in and out, freelancing. There wasn’t a sense of home, and that sense of home is something I needed in order to get well.

So, I started Googling like you Google, and it was over 10 years ago now and I found the ideas of Feng Shui and this ancient science and it all sounded very flimsy to me. I wanted something that was more grounded and something that I could wrap my head around. I wasn’t really into the idea of strings creating my good luck. I was like, “I worked so hard. I can’t imagine that a string is going to give me money.”

So, I kept digging because I knew there was something to this idea of environment because it was so prevalent and I came across a modality of Feng Shui that was actually based more on science which was Pyramid School. I had nothing to do for three months but get well, so I decided to sign up and get a mentor and start learning. It was all for me and I figured that, at the very least, if I became a Feng Shui consultant and had that, it would help me with my art clients, it would help me if I went to work in a museum, it would give me kind of an extra credential. I had no concept that this would happen.

That’s how it happened. It became slowly then quickly an obsession. Over the last decade, it’s become something that I’ve really personalized and it still shocks me every day how many people are moved by it to make changes in their space and consequently change their lives.

I love that. That’s such a great story. It’s sort of a common denominator in a lot of those that I’m interviewing these days and it certainly was with me too. But, it’s just killing ourselves and then it’s in this place of crisis and breakdown that we actually discover who we are and what we’re meant to do. Anyway, it’s almost everyone, I think, that I’m in touch with these days that are doing great work. It’s interesting how it comes out of some transformational moment. Thank you for sharing that.

I don’t what it is. Maybe this is why I was even drawn to some of your work. I can’t draw a stick figure. I am left-brained, always have been, even though I’m trying to tap more into my right brain. But, I’ve always just have an inclination for, let’s say, the aesthetic world. I can’t draw, I can’t paint, I can’t sing, I can’t play a musical instrument. Maybe I create businesses. That’s sort of my creative outlet, if there is one.

But, it’s just this sort of sense or sensibility about the importance of this sort of esoteric type importance of aesthetic, but I’ve never looked at it scientifically, I’ve never really thought much about it. My background is real estate, so like you said, it was very obvious to me that I could sell houses for more money when the sellers would work with me and we’d invest in getting the house, staged, and put a little into it to make sure it looked good. Sure enough, I finally turned it into a requirement that I’d only work with sellers that would stage their houses, and if they weren’t willing to do that, I wasn’t going to work with them, because I just knew it would take away from my ability to do a great job for them.

Anyway, that’s always been in the background. Like you said, you can see the paintings. I have lots of original artwork all over my house. So, that, I think, is even more obvious when it comes to the art world, the aesthetic. I’d like to even go I think that’s what interested me with this Feng Shui thing is beyond that, beyond the obvious, beyond buying a painting, or buying some furniture, or putting these few pieces together.

How important do you believe, now that you’ve done all this research and you’re an expert and you do designed work and consulting and writing and all this incredible work you do today that’s very deep and broad, what importance do you play on aesthetic like across the boards? Like you said, a sense of home. There’s brand, packaging sort of in the business world, but in our home environment, our office, bedroom, kitchen, aesthetic can like permeate everywhere. So, is it really important from your point of view to consider the aesthetic in all areas of our life like all of our environments?

Everywhere. What’s interesting is, I think, if I were an interior designer people would hire me for my personal aesthetic. People, I guess, read my blog and like my personal aesthetics, most of the people who read it. But, a lot of my clients have their own aesthetic. I work with people to bring out their own personal style. I often hear I can’t draw a stick figure, I’m not artistic, I’m not creative, but you are. It’s funny because we’re all creative on the very basis of our cells, like every single cell in our body is creating all the time and you could say, “Well, that’s a far leap to make,” but it’s not, because you are creative. You’re creating businesses.

Now, there’s a really high importance — it’s interesting, there’s a very good book. I would suggest that everyone who’s very focused on the business world read about the importance of design and art and being competitive in the new world. It’s called “A Whole New Mind” by Daniel Pink. I think it’s “A Whole New Mind”, I’ll double check my bookshelf, but it is so unbelievable because, basically, he talks about how jobs now are becoming more and more automated, more and more outsourced. Despite the political climate, right now, what makes a competitive individual competitive is their sense of high touch experience, their sense of aesthetics, their sense of personal engagement. MFAs are being recruited now to Fortune 500 companies more than any other percent more than MBAs, which is completely a flipped paradigm. Many companies invest more in design than they do in marketing sometimes. This is a really big thing because, right now, we present ourselves to the world half of the time based on our websites, our fonts, our social media accounts, the pictures we put on Instagram, all of these thing that never existed before. That is like the overarching, I think, environment of all of that.

When you walk into your home, you have this sanctuary, you have this space that’s just yours. It doesn’t have to look the way a magazine looks. It has look like what really connects you to home. There have been a lot of really interesting studies done about the imprinting that we get as small children. There are certain architectural features, certain colors, certain scents that make us feel more safe, more grounded, and more at home.

When you think about it, if you’ve ever been somewhere where someone is cooking something that smells like what your grandma used to cook, or when you see a blanket that reminds you of something that your mom had on her bed, or whatever it is, a perfume you smell that reminds you of your aunt, all of those things bring you home. It’s really important to really get into your house, look around, and the very, very basic is to say, “Does this really feel like me, or did the designer tell me to do this, or did I get this because I felt like it kind of went there?” which is what I hear a lot of the time. Then, you’re living with all of this stuff that feels like someone else’s home. Making those small shifts in aesthetics, you start seeing you everywhere and that’s enormously empowering. More and more, people are starting to make that connection, like understanding how wonderful it is to feel comfortable at home.

And that feeling of walking into your house, into home, and just having a love affair with it like, “Oh my god, this just feels amazing,” versus, “It’s a roof over my head and it’s great, I paid the mortgage,” but there’s not this sense of, “Ah, this feels so good.”

It definitely doesn’t rely on economics. I worked with artists who don’t have tons of money sometimes, but they flood their homes with their personal visions. I have almost every single one of my clients, barring a few, where it would be more of a struggle than a fun project to make their own art, especially the ones who think that they’re not creative. So, if I was working with you, you’d be painting next week.

That’s awesome, that’s awesome. Let’s take this maybe even a little bit deeper that’s like sort of the ideal aesthetic that it feels good, it feels home, it calls us, it feels like our aesthetic and our home, not somebody else’s. But, we live in this.

I’m a money coach. What I notice is a lot of people overspend on stuff, really. Being in a real estate background, I walk into a lot of houses, as you can imagine, and houses are just packed with clutter, and stuff, and things on the floor, and on the bookshelves, and cabinets are overflowing, and papers everywhere, and toys. Not that that’s inherently a bad thing, but I knew, again, for me, if my space is cluttered, especially my workspace, or the kids have been home, and if things are all over the place, I feel out of control. I feel like I can’t get into any flow or sense of peace. Is this just me or is this something else that you notice that there’s sort of this woo-woo symbiotic relationship between environments that flows, feels like home, has our aesthetic and energy, and how we process energy, and how that affects us in many different levels?

It’s interesting. This is where I really understand where the more metaphysical ideas of energy and the more practical ideas of energy really merge. For thousands of years, Feng Shui has taught in all different schools, even the superstitious ones and the practical ones, that your home is a mirror of your life. So, what I consider to be science is my experience for 10 years. Because, if I could see it over and over again demonstrated, without fail, for thousands and thousands of people, then I know that there is some validity to it. Even if no one in lab coats went and did statistical analysis on it, there is something to be said about how much your home is a mirror of your life. That’s like one fundamental principle.

Would an example would be that if your house is cluttered, maybe your life is cluttered?

Yeah, so very simply, if someone listening to this goes, “My home is not a mirror of my life,” then I invite you to just walk through your house and look at the story that it’s telling you, and it does tell a story. Like, if you can look and just walk around very simply, you’ll see how much life there is, how comfortable you feel, how welcome you feel, how open it feels to you, how much you feel like relaxing. Do you see your desk prominent in your house, which is very common with people who work all the time, is the only space you really inhabit your kitchen? Where do you spend all of your time? And you see it does mirror your life in one way or another.

When you have things like clutter and massive amounts of disorder, that is something that stops the flow of energy. There is a lot of science now about clutter. It’s very interesting. There have been an enormous amount of studies done about clutter and cortisol. Cortisol, of course, is a stress hormone. When you live a chronically cluttered environment, studies have shown, especially for women, elevated levels of cortisol. I don’t like to do gender stereotypes but in general, I find women to be more sensitive to their environments just in general, possibly because a lot of the women I work with spend more time in their home than their counterpart. Whoever spends more time at home tends to be more sensitive to the environment.

Elevated levels of cortisol, increase in weight gain. I’ve had people in my clutter camps that I run every year, I call them catalyst camps because people emerge kind of catalyzed and renewed. One woman lost 130 pounds. People lose so much extra weight when they get rid of clutter. This, again, has been studied. There’s a lot of science to this. People in addiction recovery, often, now in very high recovery centers or very progressive ones, they send someone to the house to work on the environment because clutter has, in it, environmental triggers that can trigger all of those old habits and old patterns. So, when you remove those triggers, which are clutter, you create a sense of more hope and new patterns can emerge.

There’s a lot of interesting science that also supports this ancient idea that your home is a mirror of your life and that when you have things that are obstructions to that flow — you know, people say, “Oh, the chi isn’t flowing.” If your chi is obstructed, chances are you could now find some scientific studies that back up why that is happening. If you want to save yourself the research and the time, you could just clear the clutter and you’ll feel and see the difference, and that can be your own empirical experiment.

Yeah, I even look at in the money category where I teach money, debt is clutter. It’s just heaviness. When I say, “How would it feel if you were debt-free?” They’re like, “Oh, I’d feel light and free.” These metaphorical terms of heaviness when you have debt, and same I think with clutter, that even until we talk about it and realized how debt, for example, is making them feel so heavy. I’m wondering, again, this clutter thing, how it sort of have us feel trapped or it’s taking over, we feel heavy or tied down, or it’s coming in on us?

Okay, so now I’m going to be a tiny bit metaphysical, but not really. The entanglement theory in quantum physics states that we are actually entangled with every single object and every single thing in our lives. If you are entangled with everything around you, if things around you are broken, if things around you are falling apart, if things around you have really negative memories attached to them, if things around you are neglected, which is very common when it comes to debt. It’s almost like you want to hide, and so things pile up, especially I see files pile up, paperwork pile up. People who have a hard time getting rid of papers can’t confront all those stuff on those papers, so they just kind of build, build, build. All of that stuff is all entanglement. So, for every single piece of paper you pick up, you look at, you handle, you shred, all of a sudden, that’s one entanglement that you are free off on a quantum level. That might sound bizarre but quantum theory has been proven. It’s not just something that lots of people like to spew about.

I think the law of attraction is wonderful. It’s also done a great disservice, I think, in many ways to the cause of becoming more effective in life, because it’s very true that, if anyone hasn’t heard of the Law of Attraction, it’s this idea that your thoughts become things and your life a mirror of you, and if you want something, you need to vibrate at the quantum level of the thing that you want. All of that stuff is true, but it also negates the idea of having to do the work of going in and doing the clearing and taking the action, and a lot of people missed that step.

I’m very big on people engaging with their clutter and breaking those entanglements. Sometimes, because it is so heavy — like, you work with people and debt, so you know how emotional, and how heavy, and how many things are tied into that stuff. I tell people to go slowly and to really start on peeling away all the layers of the attachments that they have. When they’re done, by the end of whatever it takes to get their piles and get through their flies, they really feel free. It’s that freedom and it is really freedom on a cellular level. So, it’s pretty amazing.

There’s something I quote that’s called “creation over consumption” because we’re in such this consumption culture and there’s this inclination to buy. Like, marketing is coming at us all the time. We walk through the mall, and add to our closets, or add to our houses, or something’s on sale. We’re always buying stuff, and that stuff starts piling up because we’re buying stuff and not really necessarily getting rid of stuff, and usually buying that stuff does cause the debt. So, it’s this really downward spiral where it sort of feeds on itself that, ultimately, people sort of, I think, wind up in a place where things feel out of control. They don’t even know why but they’re in an environment that’s reflecting their life, for example, like you just said.

I don’t know. I forgot how many, almost a billions of dollars are spent each year on storage units. Our houses are full, and storage units are full. So, how do you confront this? I guess, even my first question is I’m sort of a minimalist these days. I’ve gotten rid of all the excess stuff and it’s very freeing. Everything, more or less, has a place, or we’ve gotten rid of it, and really working that even the themes in our house that they have meaning. There’s some meaning or attachment, or there’s an aesthetic value to that that does add to, let’s say, the environment like this is my home. What is it that causes this attachment to these things and we just keep piling it up and we can’t let go and then we have the storage shed, we have the full closet? Question 1 is, why are we inclined to do this? Then, two, how do you work with people to help them sort of break that?

That’s both awesome questions. This is the reason it was interesting when I thought of making immersion camps online to work with all these people that I have all at once. I had the thought was, “I’m going to do a creativity camp. It’s going to be so great. I’m going to send people creative material,” and I’m doing all this stuff and I’m so overwhelmed with this concept. Then, my sister came to me and said, “No, it needs to be a clutter camp,” and I was like, “Oh my god, you’re right.” It’s like the fundamental to everything: why people aren’t creative, why people are stuck, how it all happened.

The why is a multitude of whys. I don’t think there’s one why for everyone. I’ve noticed that the overall overarching theme that happens with the people who joined my camp there are now so many, so many hundreds of them that, in some way, things became overwhelming and it became easier to put things off for later. Self-love kind of dwindled, self-care dwindled over time as these piles and these things piled up. It’s almost like a graph where the higher your self-care and your self-worth, the lower your clutter and the inverse.

It’s not because people don’t want to love themselves, don’t want to do self-care, don’t want to invest in their well-being, don’t want to do things like meditate, don’t want to have all of these things. I think every single person, even if they’ve never or have no interest in the metaphysical world have an interest in wanting to feel good. Everyone wants to feel alive, and vital, and happy. I think it’s just a chronic — at some point, there was some crisis, or overwhelm, or something happened and the chart started to flip, and over time, it’s like a demoralizing cycle. The more the clutter piles up, the less, the less, the more guilty you feel. I have a lot of people who feel guilt for taking the time to like clear a drawer because they have so many other things that they have to deal with, because their life has become so chaotic, people who feel so guilty for taking a bath because they have so much work that they haven’t completed.

There’s a real component of – and again this sounds really airy-fairy, I know, to some people – a component of self-love and self-care that is absolutely critical and it really is a graph. I see it all the time. The more people start making some space in their home and I have everyone start working on whatever it is that’s going to feed them in their life, the graph starts to switch. It can take a while because you’re undoing habits that have been there for quite some time

But, if you’re consistent, even in little baby steps, you can flip that graph around. If it’s overwhelming for you to control or confront the clutter, the debt, the whatever it is you have. I tell everyone to start with at least a little bit more self-care every single day, whether it’s a 15 minute walk, or 10 minutes of meditation, or whatever it is that makes you personally feel really good and make that non-negotiable. From there, everything else can start flipping.

I love that. I actually teach money attached to self-love and self-worth because net worth itself —

Wow. That’s so cool.

Believe me, I’m a believer, sort of a pragmatist, practical, left-brained business person. I really think that there’s this match up and mesh up where we can be equally balanced with some of the more metaphysical, then it tends to be most powerful. So, totally agree with that, and the self-love piece, I think, is sort of underlying everything, and sort of everything bubbles up from there.

Maybe it’s this attachment theory that you mentioned or whatever, but sometimes it’s so hard, even for myself, who’s pretty much not attached to too many things, a minimalist by philosophy at this stage in my life, but there’s still just something that cleaning up the junk drawer and thinking, “Well, I may need that someday.” How many things do we hold on to that really aren’t necessary that might even be easier to just go rebuy in the slim chance that you ever do need it again? How do you work with that, for those that are like, “Yeah, I am really ready to declutter but I know I’m going to be looking at something and thinking, ‘Well, maybe, I should hold on to that'”?

Like the hole punchers that I have from like 1980 in my drawer that I swear I’m going to make confetti with one day, we all have things that we hold on to that we think, at one point, will be useful. To some degree, I say, if it’s small, if it’s a Microplane for lemon zest and it’s small, it’s not taking up much space, and it could be useful, keep it. It’s fine. I think that it becomes this grand negotiation where it’s like, “Oh, I might need this whole room full of crap one day.”

That, I’ve had with many, many clients, one-on-one clients, and one that stands out particular who was involved in a natural disaster and lost all of her stuff, and as a result of that, she started to hold on to everything because it was the shock, the trauma, everything about it made her want to hold on so tightly to everything she was accumulating after she lost everything. I’ve seen this in multiple people who’ve had these situations, but this one springs to mind because she said to me, “I really need to start believing again that the world is a good place and that I will be able to get this stuff in the future, for lack of a better word, that the universe has my back and that I’m not going to get into this place where another disaster is going to strike or another shoe is going to drop.”

I think it’s really whenever I encounter people who hold on too tightly to things because they’re afraid they might need it one day, I often ask them, “Do you think there’s something bleak that’s going to happen in the future where you won’t be able to get another white t-shirt or you won’t be able to get — you know what I mean? I’m not a big fan of just dumping things for the sake of dumping them. I’m very into donating, upcycling, recycling. That’s a real thing.

Whenever it’s a chronic thing, I always wonder, is there some source of scarcity mentality? Is there some sort of projection of doom? Or, “Got to save up in case the apocalypse comes,” and often there is. Often, there’s some sort of scarcity thing happening where people are so afraid if they get rid of that evening dress they hadn’t worn for seven years that they’re going to suddenly be invited to a black tie event, they’re going to have nothing to wear. It’s like, “But, wouldn’t it be fun to get a new one since you don’t like this one?”

Yeah, and how much of it is the idea of letting go? I mean, that’s such a metaphor too that how much in life do we just need to let go of? Like, we’re holding onto too much stress or too much control or too much need, and so much of the work that working some of my customers now is like this first piece is this letting go of this need to be perfect, letting go of certain controls, letting of things that we’re attached to that aren’t serving us.

So, I think about that, like the closet, or even the storage unit. I keep going back that when I see it in people’s books, they’re spending $200 a month on a storage unit and they’ve not stepped foot in it for three years. But, it’s just trying to figure out what is that so that maybe we can solve that issue or take care of that and get the $200 off the books like in a very practical sense, but in the more life happiness sense, get rid of that heaviness also.

There’s a really interesting book, and again, it’s going to straddle science and I always quote where these things come from because I think it’s really important if people are interested in the concept that they can look further, but it’s called “Power vs. Force”. It’s by David Hawkins. Have you read it?

Great book.

Isn’t it a great book?

So is Daniel Pink’s, by the way. I mean, all the books you’ve referenced are excellent books, so keep going.

Oh, thank you! I spend all my free time reading, and learning, and experimenting with things, and Power vs. Force was one of the most interesting books that helped me to explain, at least to myself, a lot of what I saw happening. You know, for some people, it’s very much of an effort to do a lot of things, and for some people, things seem to flow very easily. I always wondered is it just people are luckier than others? That doesn’t really make sense why is it that some people can easily let things go, can easily be free, and some people feel stuck. And in Power vs. Force, again, it’s like straddling the line of science, but kinesiology is used to test various emotional states.

It’s funny. One of my clients was one of the people who helped develop kinesiology and there was a lot of empirical study that went into developing it in the chiropractic world. So, in kinesiology, if someone who’s listening has never tried it before, there’s something called “muscle testing”, and the theory is that if something is near your body that’s not in harmony with your body’s energy, not in sync with it, it will make your body go weak, and if something is around your body that is in harmony with your body, it will make you feel strong.

The way that I say this is imagine how you feel when you’re in the best museum you’ve ever been in looking at a masterpiece or you’re in the greatest home, or you’re in the greatest mood, and everyone around you is happy, how strong and powerful do you feel? Then, think about what happens when you’re in a scary place, possibly an unknown neighborhood in a dark alley, how weak and vulnerable do you feel? It’s very clear, like you feel it in your body.

People actually have emotional states that they’re most used to. They have a general baseline of an emotional state that they’re used to hovering in. Does that mean they’re a bad person because they’ve been overwhelmed with anger, or anxiety, or fear? No. It’s sometimes just a lack of tools, a lack of awareness, a lack of knowing that there’s something they can even do about it.

There’s a scale that was created of human emotion, and the book talks about how people that live beneath a certain level of emotional awareness or emotional happiness basically live in more force. Everything becomes really hard and it becomes extremely hard to let things go. If you think about it, when you’re very, very angry, it’s so hard to get rid of that feeling and it’s so hard to get anything done. It’s so hard to function. But, if you even feel at least reasonable in your mind and you get it together and you calm down and you’re rational, suddenly you’re above that threshold of emotion where things are hard and you can start piecing together a solution.

So, when you find yourself immersed in a lot of clutter that becomes overwhelming, especially financial clutter – that is so debilitating for people and it’s mirrored in a home in actual clutter as well in so many different ways – I find that the level, just like I said, that self-love curve, I find that the emotional level that people are functioning on is closer to fear, anxiety, like everything is very much force. So, raising up your level of happiness, raising up your emotional quotient actually makes it easier to start letting things go. When people become even a little tiny bit happier, it becomes so much easier to stop those loops of worries, and anxieties, and thoughts. You become more present.

All of these things are talked about really specifically in the book and a lot of what David Hawkins talks about is the process of letting go. And as you continue to let go, and let go, and let go of ideas of patterns of loops of physical stuff, and all of it, you rise up the chart and life becomes easier. I could tell you from firsthand experience, it’s true. Life does become easier. I encourage, a lot of the programs I do are all based on rising people up higher and I do it with them, because things could always be easier.

Right, and there is some of the faith piece where you just have to believe some of this and let go and have faith that it’s going to work that, “I can let go, and slowly but surely, we feel lighter and better, and then that sort of cycle, maybe, can take over.”

Alright, let’s switch gears a little bit. Beyond being an artist, a designer, art history, working in New York, working with clients, helping them declutter, the things that we’ve just talked about, you really are a master in a school of Feng Shui, and Feng Shui would have been one of the things I would have kind of called BS on in my old. It’d be like, “Feng Shui, really? How silly or airy-fairy.”

But again, I think there is a lot more science to this now. And like you said, there’s different schools of Feng Shui. It sounds like those more traditional, and like you said, less scientific and more not spiritual necessarily, but superstitious, I think, is what you said. But, tell us, what is Feng Shui, like what is it, and why does this philosophy and methodology resonate with you in such a way you teach it, you use it, you inspire others with it. Obviously, you use this methodology and philosophy to work with your clients. So, tell us about that.

Really basic, Feng Shui is the art and science of changing environments to change your life. That’s like the easiest way that I could sum it up. The basis of Feng Shui, there’s many practical. It was based, basically, on survival. It was created to help people survive in times where things that we take for granted that we could survive weather conditions, we could survive various attacks from people. It was really founded on these very basic principles in nature: how do you survive, how do you build so that things are more protected? All of these fundamental principles came from observing the people who were surviving and developing an art to ensure that more and more people could survive, and thrive, and prosper, and be able to carry on a lineage. This is thousands and thousands of years of people working with these ideas.

Now, there’s a part of it that veers off into what I call “black magic”, and also into a lot of superstition, a lot of a form of Buddhism, which is really provisional and not valid today, which is called “Black Hat”, and there is a lot superstition involved. Again, people say, “Don’t bash what you don’t know.” I actually have seen people get very damaged by this, so I’m very, very up front in talking about how much I do not condone these things. People who are terrified by the idea of having bad luck because of certain objects in their house, or people calling me, flipping out that their bathroom is in their wealth area, and are they going to go broke and, “Am I going to get divorced because my bed doesn’t face northwest?” these are the ideas that have been propagated over time, these terrors. It’s really fear-based stuff.

I don’t work with any of that, but yet there is this lineage and tradition of how space affects life. So, how I work with Feng Shui is really looking at your space, the story that your space is telling, and on top of that, using these tools which have been passed down, which now are gaining more and more validity over time like how much clutter do you have, the colors that you’re using, and how colors actually psychologically impact us as well as the elemental nature of those colors, looking at how your home is set up and how you’re using it, and what areas correspond to what parts of your life, or looking at the messages that you’re sending in your art, that you’re sending in everything around you.

The reason I’m so intrigued by it is because it’s an overarching philosophy. It’s what I said at the very beginning. What I’ve always wanted to do is teach people that you can use all these aesthetics. You can actually be creative and you can construct your own reality, and the biggest thing that I help people with is rewriting that life story and understanding that for those of you who’ve done a vision board, or heard about that in personal development courses, with the kind of Feng Shui I do, your home becomes a vision board of your life.

That’s really the most powerful thing. You’re living inside a paradigm that you’re creating, a whole new paradigm for yourself and it really influences your lifestyle. I work a lot with lifestyle shifts. I’m friends with many, many experts in different modalities of wellness, including doctors, actual doctor doctors, and actual certified nutritionists who are very well-known, and you people who are doing a lot of amazing work in different modalities, and I really bring together as much as possible to support people in making those changes in their space and in their life so that it all fuses together.

We’ve talked about a few things. We’ve talked about environment, energy, aesthetic. What about the word “space”?

Space is everything, right? I mean, if we don’t have mental space — intrigued actually, now there’s been a lot, a lot of studies now that meditation is becoming so valid and such a huge study, the ideas of mindfulness, creating space in your mind is a real thing now that Marie Kondo released her book about the magical art of decluttering and creating space in your closets is becoming a real thing. Creating space in your actual schedule is a really big thing.

There is a philosophical idea, and again, this is something that I think there is some physics behind it, but it’s applied very philosophically, so please go with me on it. But, there’s an idea that nature outpours a vacuum, so that when you create space in your life, it’s almost like you suck in new things. “Out with the old, in with the new”, that whole philosophy, people notice, “Oh, I donated a whole bunch of stuff, and then all of a sudden, I made more money.”

It’s like all of these ideas of creating space and making room for the new are ideas that permeate history. Right now, I don’t when this is going to air, but right now, we’re on the Chinese New Year’s Eve and everyone is cleaning their houses, because in China, it’s a tradition before the New Year to clean your house so you have room for prosperity for the New Year. You have to make space for the new. All of the books, like The Secret, talk about making space in your bedroom so that you have room for a partner to appear. Space is extraordinarily important.

So, is downtime, which is also being scientifically proven, so is giving your brain a rest, so is taking vacations. Vacation days are so important. Now, all of this data is coming out that’s supporting all of these ideas that people in the wellness woo-woo world have been talking about, and it’s exciting because, really, the science helps everyone. It helps everyone to say, “Give yourself a break, give yourself some space. It’s actually going to make your whole life better. It’ll make your business better, your mind better, your body better.” Everything benefits from space.

Yeah, and there’s so many of these now Eastern that have sort of been poo-poo’ed or pushed aside. These Eastern philosophies, and practices, and beliefs are really starting to emerge in the Western world, and we’re seeing how healthy they are, like Ayurvedic medicine that’s been around for centuries, and Chinese traditions, like Feng Shui and others, and meditation, like a lot of the yoga.

I mean, these are Eastern philosophies and practices that have been around for thousands of years and have helped civilizations survive and thrive, and yet we’ve sort of put those out there like, “Oh my god, that’s woo-woo or whatever.” But, it’s very fascinating to see how we are seeing those principles really start to emerge and the importance of them, and there’s no reason why they’ve lasted thousands of years. I mean, there is a reason.

There is a reason and I’m always welcoming in new practices and new things. Ayurveda, I think, is so fascinating, and it’s such a big study, and I’m just starting to play around with the principles more in my own life. Usually, I’ll test something for like a year or two before I start really working with it and incorporating it in bigger ways. But, there’s an exciting world of disciplines that have been actually tested and proven.

So, for people who are listening who think that it’s just too weird or too foreign or too out of my comfort zone, it’s simple things like the idea that now you can get acupuncture through your insurance company in many cases. Like, it’s an actual science with doctors. It’s not something that someone’s doing that’s unqualified sticking needles into you. These are all things that are now emerging as more effective, in many ways, than the alternatives of medications and other things that can be addictive and don’t work.

I really encourage people to not necessarily wildly expose themselves to things, but to even just Google an alternative to something they need. I mean, something as simple as turmeric instead of Advil, try it. What’s the worst thing that could happen? You might still have a headache. That’s all that can happen. You know what I mean? Like something simple. And that’s how people get addicted to this stuff, in a good way. That’s how people’s journeys begin is just a simple thing.

My friend started mindbodygreen, the big website, because he had a back problem and he was going to need surgery and found yoga and tried it, and it worked, and it saved him from having to have back surgery, and suddenly, this whole lid came off of a wellness world that some have science, some doesn’t have science, but it’s all interesting and useful, and if it works, people say, “Well, isn’t Feng Shui a placebo effect?” and I say, “Well, if it is, and it works, who cares?” Would you rather be miserable or just be happy and thriving?

So, let’s go out since we’re sort of straddling the edge here of scientific-proven, and maybe a little bit more metaphysical what we’ve sort of thrown in the woo-woo airy-fairy categories. Let’s go even further out and talk a little bit. I’d like to know, where does spirituality fit in here? Because, you’ve had a health issue, I’ve had a health issue, and so much of going through that was sort of this healing journey, but the healing journey, for me, was a spiritual journey that really changed my perspective for me as to what spirituality is and how it’s important. But then, it sort of offered me an opportunity to be connected where maybe I was disconnected before. So, what’s the spiritual component that you see that factors in here of letting go, of being rid of the clutter? The spiritual, and then the physical, like the health, the wellness?

Wow, that’s an awesome question. I have my own spiritual practice that I actually re-emerged with, like you said. After my own health crisis, I really committed myself to my Buddhist practice and that’s been the fundamental underpinning of my own work. Now, of course, I’m not a Buddhist priest and I’m not going to go and tell everyone that they have to practice Buddhism. But, the spiritual principles behind Buddhism, I think, purveyed every single thought, religious, as spiritual practice ever, and at the very basic basic, it’s the idea of being connected to one another, that we’re all connected. I think that everyone, on some level, can agree with that.

The other principle is cause and effect. So, really taking responsibility for the causes that we’re each making in life and then the effects that we are receiving. A lot of what happens when you decide to take control, I think, of one area of your space: your home, or your debt, or your relationship or whatever it is, it’s 100% responsibility that we have to take for what we’ve created.

For a lot of people that have been living with the effective things, “Oh, it just keeps happening, I have bad luck, I have this, I have that,” a lot of what that spiritual aspect of what I really espouse is the idea, without blame, understanding in some way, or shape, or form, we’ve created this. Yeah, there are tragedies and there are things that happen, but an everyday level, if you have a spending problem, it didn’t just happen and you didn’t inherit it. You know what I mean? Like, on some level, you reached into your pocket and pulled out your card and swiped it. That’s a cause.

Same thing in your home, the clutter didn’t just appear. You made the cause of turning a blind eye. Does that mean you’re a bad person? But, it also empowers you. If you created it, you can uncreate it. If you caused it, you can change it. I think that’s the difference a lot when it comes to wellness.

In Western Philosophy, often people say, “Oh, it just happened,” or, “It’s genetics. Nothing you can do about it.” But, real science is proving genetics aren’t even really a determining factor in more than 1% of diseases. It’s your lifestyle. It’s the causes that you’re making every single day, what you’re creating, and then you experience the effects of them. Does that mean that you created your illness? No, it’s not like that deep. But, it is important to see how life, how it all has come together to contribute to this so that you can undo it.

If you live in a world where things just happen to you, then where do you go? Talk about terror, like wondering what’s going to happen next. That’s one of the things I’m very, very passionate about is the idea that we really can create a new reality, and that goes for wellness as well. So, really, on a basic level, that idea of connection, and that happens very much more easily when you feel connected to your space, and then the bigger part is how we’re creating all of this, and then we can uncreate it.

In a spiritual aspect, I think those are two concepts that are inclusive to all people. I don’t like anyone to feel like their beliefs are being invalidated. These concepts are so broad, but they’re really, I think, universally applied.

Yeah, and we have to have space to connect. If we’re too busy and just hurried all the time and it’s frenetic energy, we don’t have time to sit down, and talk, and connect. We don’t have time to listen, and be present, and laugh, and enjoy life. We’re just running, running, running all the time. You can’t connect and run at the same time. They’re sort of mutually exclusive.

It’s the worst feeling. I mean, isn’t that everyone’s kind of fighting against right now? We all want to be able to have room to breathe. It’s so important.

Yeah, and it’s how much have we complicated our lives with clutter, with stuff, with all these concepts we’ve been teaching versus maybe just being okay with things being simpler.

I’m a big fan. Whenever people say that one of the things they got from the programs they’ve done with me is that they’ve started buying less stuff, I feel really good about that. That’s like a big deal. It’s almost like saying, “Now, I’m more full, so I don’t need to buy things to fill me up unnecessarily.”

Yeah, that’s great. Then, we buy more things and then we have to go faster in order to keep up with the payments. Your world and my world really align very well. In fact, so much of what you’re saying, I’m like, “Oh my gosh, that’s a total mirror.”

That’s a big thing I’ve been seeing more and more. It’s like, “You want to make your life more complicated, go buy some stuff you can’t afford.”

Perfectly said. Alright, just a few more things. I know you’ve got to run off here in a minute, so thank you for the time you’ve given us so far. What sort of tips do you have? Are there any tips you can give just to sort of help people maybe take that first step or two to start unloading?

I think one thing that’s really fun, and I know it’s winter for many people, but it’s still really fun, and if you’re willing to go on the journey just to see the difference between stagnation and flow, open even one or two windows, turn on a fan if you have a fan available, and really sit in a room when everything is closed and all stuffed up, and then open things up and let things flow for just a few minutes. Then, you can close everything and put the heat back on, but feel the difference of stagnation and then flow, and in your life, strive to have more of that motion. That’s like a really simple thing. It’s the easiest space-clearing. People know about burning sage and all of those things, but for some people, it’s too complicated.

Another thing you can do if you want to just instantly change your space is clap in the corners. The sound and the action also helps to wake things up where they’ve been stagnant and stuck. And for those of you dealing with money issues, stagnation and stuckness has a lot to do with debt and that feeling of drowning in things, overly stressed.

So, it’s a really simple, practical thing that people can do. Cleaning house is a big one. I really like people to clean their own homes at least once in a while even if you have a cleaning person that helps you or a staff of people that helps you. It’s very important to make that connection to your space. You will learn so much about your space while you’re cleaning it, and the more fun you have with cleaning, the better. That’s a really big one.

I am very, very emphatic about going through at least one room, and you might want to start with your bedroom, because even though we’re sleeping, we spend almost the most time in the bedroom, of all places. And start ridding it of everything that you don’t absolutely love. That subtraction, alone, is so empowering. It might mean that you get new bedding, it might mean that you donate your comforter and get a quilt, it might mean that you changed the art on the walls or finally put art on the walls, get things out of your closets.

Remember that everything around you in that room really is the greatest sanctuary that you have. So, if you could just take the time to do that one area and stop working in your bedroom, or on your bed, or with your phone in your bed, 100%, if you could take that leap, it’s very life-changing for multiple reasons.

Those are all very small, I think, very doable things that can get you to start feeling the difference between disconnected and connected, stuck and flowing, and in general, start making that person/place connection.

I love that. Alright, two more questions. As you know, I’m a money author and coach, and we’ve talked about that a little bit here, and I really love how our two worlds really do match up. But, what are your money beliefs? I mean, you’ve alluded to some of the money clutter, debt, these different things. But, how does money factor in to what you teach, your own personal philosophy, and what you’ve noticed?

I run a cash camp every year, which is based on all of these principles in an energetic sense. So, with what you do, you’re dealing with – I’m not a financial expert by any means – I deal with the energy part of it. I deal with the home part of it, the story part of it in a tactile way. Definitely, I’m not a psychiatrist, nor am I a psychologist, nor am I anything but a space-maker.

My personal money beliefs, and I’m very big on this, is that we really do get what we give. I think giving is the most important principle of all of it. I give a lot away. I constantly give, give, give. I am really not concerned about people saying, “You give away so much stuff for free and so much material,” and I’m like, “But, that’s like saying I don’t have enough.” Of course, I want everyone to be able to do this. Giving is really, really, fundamental to everything that I do. It’s a big part of my camps.

Also, making space. I know that if something is blocked, it’s because, in some way, I’m blocking it. And finding that in my home as well as in myself, really examining my beliefs, if I can’t get something to move easily, why, and looking at what I’m doing and how I’m creating it. That’s another big principle that I apply a lot. Seeing, in my home, where I could put more energy, where I can put more intention, working with that kind of energy and intention rather than haphazardly just randomly doing things.

Really being mindful of a schedule, which is something that I’ve resisted as a creative person for a long time. I couldn’t keep a calendar until a few years ago, when it got too busy to not. I used to think I could just store everything in my mind and things would just work out. It doesn’t work that way. Organizing time and space is a big, big thing. I work with clients a lot on those things, and I find it dramatically influences money, production, all of it.

I think, probably the most fundamental thing that I work with, which I think is an intangible thing, is a feeling. Like, I want to leave every single client and every single person feeling happier and lighter. That’s something I can’t quantify. It’s something I just feel. I know when a report is done, I know when a home is done, I know when a client isn’t quite ready or there yet, and I know that now intuitively, and that’s kind of like the X factor.

Same thing with the blog posts I share, the things that I do. I’m really interested in that feeling, and once I have that feeling, I know I can share it. So, that’s the unquantifiable X factor, but I think it really does make a difference in terms of abundance and prosperity and all of those things.

I love that, so thank you for sharing. Okay, one final question that I ask all of my guests is that there’s so many myths out there that we believe in, we abide by, especially, probably, in your world that are just not true. So, they’re sort of negatively impacting our lives one way or another. Is there a myth that you just bump up against on a regular basis with your clients, or in your life, or wherever that you just want to bust saying, “That’s just not true. Here’s the truth of the matter”?

That’s awesome. That’s a great question. I think, for me, because of the basis of Feng Shui, in many ways, of how it’s been assimilated into culture, the thing I come up against constantly is the idea of luck. The idea of luck, and lucky, and lucky charms, and lucky things, and lucky stones, and lucky this, and lucky that, if I relied on those things as a kid, I would still be sitting where I grew up with the same problems that I had when I grew up. I wouldn’t have believed I could have more money, I wouldn’t have believed I could have an education, I wouldn’t have believed that I could change the things that I’d changed, I wouldn’t have believed I could get well when I was sick. I would be waiting for luck, and that just doesn’t work.

I can only know, inherently in myself and in the people around me that I’ve worked with, we’re all — I think there’s this mythological idea that some people are luckier than others, and I just don’t think that’s true. I really believe that, yes, some people have accumulated more momentum toward their cause at this point. They’ve worked longer and harder towards certain things, or they’ve put more energy and thought into certain things than, perhaps, you have at the moment. But, there’s no reason why you can’t make your own luck, there’s no reason why you can’t build that positive momentum, there’s no reason why you can’t change whatever it is wherever you want to go and have more of that synchronicity, have more of that ease, and more things come together for you.

It involves doing, not just thinking, not just wondering and meditating, and all of those things that are wonderful, and visualizing. “I love every single tool, I love crystals, I love all of it,” but ultimately, it comes down to, “Are you going to show up every day and do it?” and that’s it. So, you really make your own luck, and if there’s anything I can leave people with, it’s that it’s so important.

That’s perfectly said. That’s a great completion point. Thank you so much for your time today. This was a really fun conversation. I love to dance, sort of, on the edge of the physical, metaphysical, and thank you. You’re amazing. I really love how you teach from so many different sort of philosophical, and traditional, and more modern beliefs and practices, and merged all those, meshed all those together to really create a beautiful holistic approach.

Thank you so much. It’s been such a fun honor to be here. I love what you’re doing. It’s so, so incredible and so important for people.

Well, thank you so much. We’ll talk soon.

Bye.

And so ends another episode of the Wealthy Wellthy Life. This was one more millionaire mindset that will make you wealthy while keeping you healthy. Before you leave, if you want to learn how to become rich, healthy, and happy, then sign up for my free money training at mindfulmoneywebinar.com. You will learn my signature formula for transforming your life from debt into a healthy multimillionaire. It’s the only moneymaking system that makes your health your number one asset. It’s helped thousands of others and it can help you too. If you’re curious how it all works, visit mindfulmoneywebinar.com and sign up today. Again, that’s mindfulmoneywebinar.com. Remember, it’s free. And as always, be sure to subscribe to my podcast to make sure that you catch next week’s millionaire mindset. This is Krisstina Wise, your personal guide to having it all, signing off. Here’s to living a Wealthy Wellthy Life. I’ll see you next time.