#190 – The Man, The Moose, The Legend Dai Manuel

All I can say is just, just start with one thing And if walking, if you’re open to it, just walk 30 minutes a day, get outside have some fun, get some fresh air, listen to some good tunes or a positive message. Maybe a ted talk or an audio book, but just that will have an impact if you’re consistent with it. Just try it for one week, just one week and see how much can improve in just one week by doing that one activity. And then from there, you know, you can start to layer other things in. Um But but just start with the bare minimum and be consistent with it. Once you’ve done your your one week of walking, then you can progress to stand up comedy, Right? Yeah, that’s right, yeah, maybe. What happened there? Why, why did you decide to do that? Thomas Green here with Ethical Marketing Service on the episode. Today. We have the man, the moose the legend.

Please welcome Dai Manuel. Well Thomas. Oh my gosh, I can’t believe it’s almost been a year since we last had a conversation in this format and it’s amazing to think how much can happen in a year. Right? But you’re looking great and thanks for having me back. So what’s happened in the last year? Well, you know, I I uh well, I think last time we chatted, I had just done my ted talk, my first ted X talk, sitting across that kitchen table, Christie looked me in the eyes and she broke the silence by asking me the most life sobering of questions being the type of man you’d want your daughters to marry and um, you know, that opened up a lot of doors, uh, some opportunities for me over this last year to connect with some men in a very authentic and transparent way. You know, whether that was bringing more more awareness to the mentorship, monday’s community that I’ve, I feel very grateful to have been a part of these last three years. You know, it’s just a group of men coming together once a week to, to just connect and support each other, you know, you know, with no hidden agenda.

And, and it’s interesting, right? Because I know we’ve, we’ve talked a bit about vulnerability and vulnerability as men before and you know, it’s still one of those things that it feels like it’s like this holy grail we’re searching for, but it’s accessible, it’s accessible for all of us. But I think for many of us we just don’t know how to get started. How do we start to, to experiment developing that skill of vulnerability, especially in in a more powerful or self empowered and positive way because I think some of our relationships with that term is negative and, and hey, fair enough, I mean, I, I come from that same boat, you know, I, uh, when I think about my upbringing. So, so you know, there’s that over the last year and so seeing new men come to the community and having opportunities to connect with other men on other platforms, been wonderful. And uh and then also, you know, I went through my own mental health struggles uh starting it would have been 2021 but the summer of 2021 right around june july, I just, I I, you know, I I really struggled getting into a sort of a flow again. And as a result, I found myself not doing the things that have always done me well from my lifestyle, my health, especially with mental health, and that’s a slippery slope.

You know, we we all know this, like you stopped doing some of the things that, you know, make you feel better, right? And and we stopped doing those and then we start to wonder, why am I not feeling as good as I used to while I’m not doing those things, but now I’m not as motivated and I don’t find myself doing those things, you know, so you can find yourself in this sort of catch 22 situation where it’s like, I know I should be and if I do, I will feel better, but I’m feeling so I don’t really want to do it. And uh, so I went through that sort of a struggle for a few months and uh I got to a place where I just drew a line in the sand and said, you know what, that’s enough. I got to take some steps back from what I was doing on the online side of things, You know, I really took a step back from being online from social, from just call it a somewhat of a digital detox, and I put all that that newly regained time and energy and focus into my own mental health and my own physical well being, and that took me down a whole new path. And I’m happy to say, you know, I had this question, what would be like to be my, my fittest, healthiest, mentally and physically version of me starting, You know, 20, You know, because it’s also my 45th birthday was in November, and so it’s sort of around this new year, new me, new new period of my own life and what I don’t want to have it so regimented that I found myself in a box, you know, I was like, what, what would it take to to go outside that box, and, and, and, you know, redefine what it means to be the healthiest version of me.

And uh, and so I embarked on that, and I’m happy to say I got there, I discovered that, and, and, and so that brings us to right now, and, you know, it’s so good to see you, but there’s there’s here standing as my healthiest and fittest as well as I’ve been in the best place I’ve ever been in my life. So amazing how much can happen in a year. I mean, it’s congratulations on on getting through that, and I’m sorry to hear you had a bit of a tough time. You mentioned the things that you weren’t doing, what was it that you stopped doing physical fitness stuff, because also, if you could elaborate on one thing which is when I perceive you to be this enthusiastic, you know, you’ve got bright eyes, you’re full of energy and you’ve got the physical fitness stuff down. It’s difficult for me to think of you in that way. So, what, what are your thoughts around that? And I can appreciate that? I I mean, I’ve been saying the same thing for over 12 years, you know, I’ve been saying the same thing showing up the same way and and just really trying to make an impact in other people’s lives, but at the same time my own and my family and you know, all those things that our priority of course, but, you know, like anybody, I’m just a person and I’m a person that has dealt with a lot of different challenges in his life, you know, just like any one of us, you know, I’m not unique in that respect and I recognize that, but the way we each navigate the challenges that we encounter or find ourselves living through, that’s very different, you know, because yeah, sure.

You start to look at what’s outside of us and I and I know some people are like, well, you gotta look internal and I’m like, well, yes and no, I mean, environment does play into our association, does play into it. Even our families play into it, but we still, at the end of the day, I have to take full ownership for our life, you know, and but at times it was easy to, to point fingers and say, well this isn’t working out for me, so it’s okay to take my foot off the gas, so to speak or or to let that slide or I, you know, I’ve been really consistent up to now, it’s okay if I take a few days off and then a few days turns into a week turns into two weeks and next thing, you know, it’s like, I don’t remember the last time I did it and that could include my physical fitness, including my meditation, my journaling, um just even having deep conversations with you and and you know, when I knew it got to its worst thomas was when all of a sudden, you know, the mentorship monday, the weekly monday gatherings, you know, it’s every monday night we get together either on zoom or in person, we just connect as men and we create the space that’s really safe, but also a great place to just ah have you know, be heard, be seen and be acknowledged and I started finding myself not wanting to go to that, you know, thinking I don’t feel great about myself, I don’t feel like I’m in a good place right now, I don’t want to show up where, you know, the group especially is critical and key for us that are feeling that way, and all the more reason to show up, because I would find myself saying that two other guys, you know, when you’re feeling that way, like you don’t want to show up, you definitely want to show up, and I found myself having that my own internal debate and that’s when I knew that things were not in a great place, you know, like, and that’s what I meant when I said some of the things that I knew that by doing it, it made me feel better and yet I was just not doing them, and it was the weirdest thing right to be able to watch this sort of unfolding in my own life and I almost felt like I was a third party observer, and then, you know, I have to give my head a shake and I’m like, no, no, no, your this is your life, dude, I’m the one that’s gonna take some action here and start doing some stuff.

And uh so for me, it was just all I started doing thomas was every day I get out for a walk, that’s how I started it, get out for a walk, start to change how I’m eating a little bit, really get back to basics, started listening to some, some uplifting audiobooks as well while I was walking, so sort of cascading those two habits together and you know, because to make the most of my time as well, and, and you know, sure enough, within about two weeks things started to improve, I started to feel a bit better, I started to think a little bit more clearly and more importantly start to think a little bit more positively about myself again. You know, it’s, it’s, you know, that whole idea of self love, I know it’s quite cliche today, it’s a buzz phrase, but it’s true, you know, if you, if you can’t care for yourself enough to do the things that, you know, it’s going to make life better and make you feel better, make you show up as a better version of yourself, why not? You know, like if there’s anybody that we want to be able to be that generous with, it should be ourselves, you know, and but yet I found myself not doing that and, and so, you know, it was interesting because it also brought me to a different place of being able to emphasize with my clients in my communities, you know, because here I was going through the exact same thing I support a lot of people through and it was, it was a hard reset for me, you know, and I think there was some other psychological things that were playing into that my, my eldest daughter was just moving out, getting ready for university, so that, you know, an adjustment there, um, on top of that, you know, professionally there was some shifts being happening in my business, and uh and then also on top of that, you know, I was thinking about my dad and we were coming up on the five year anniversary of his passing from pancreatic cancer, and there was just a lot of stuff.

Again, I’m not using that as excuses or as a justification, but it’s just what it was, you know, and so I can sort of try to fill into all that, but at the end of the day, it’s like, okay, that’s my life, it’s all good, what am I doing today? What can I do today? And it was that, you know, that was the exact thing, and but and this is the cool part thomas, it doesn’t take much for those who are listening and watching this, you know, as soon as you make up your mind to start doing something a little bit differently, and then you do it and then you do it again, and then again and again, the next thing, you know, you start to build this this momentum, right? And that momentum is wonderful because it does in essence creating inertia for you and those objects in motion, like to stay in motion. That’s physics will tell us. And and it’s very much the same way for us as human beings, you know, when we get going. And I think if anybody thinks about some of those things that you’re really passionate about those projects you’ve done in your life, so you just like, you got excited and was like, boundless energy right to just charge forward doing whatever that thing is. And uh, I like to think that I’ve rediscovered that my life, you know, and, and but I needed to go through a lot of challenging moments, you know, to truly appreciate the, the contrast, I think again, so, you know, it’s all good, I worked through it and you know, how’s life been for you thomas this last year?

I’ve been good, like I said, staying productive, um lots of lots of parenting time, so that stuff’s all good. And I think you you’re, you’re also quite, you’ve got experience there as well, but it’s fun time regarding the how you got yourself through it. So you said it was walks, regular walks, I’m assuming you’re still jamming at the moment, is that right? I got back to jimmy, but I didn’t start with that the first, almost two months, there wasn’t really any structured workouts has been going out for a walk and then after a couple of weeks of walking, I started cycling again, just, just, and I’m not talking about like hard rides, okay, I’m talking about more commuting type rides, But I would get out for 30 to 60 minutes a day, you know, a few times a week and that was just wonderful now also, you know, summer times where there was a lot more forgiving here in Vancouver and so there was in the days were longer, you know, lights were getting, nights are getting shorter, so there’s a few things that were playing to that and really complementary to me making these, these shifts because it’s a lot easier, you know, when it’s sunny and it’s warm out to go outside and have a cycle, go for a walk, right?

It’s, it’s, it’s definitely a lot more welcoming. Um, so, so I, I played to that, you know, I, I enjoyed that aspect, it made it easier to just commit and follow through, but, but those are the pieces and then my nutrition, you know, just, just looking at things like sugar intake, how much caffeine am I getting in a day, you know, just, just subtle little things, just, just not looking to reinvent my, my, my day to day and how I nourish a fuel myself, but really just trying to make better decisions in the moment, that was it. And, and you know, after a couple of months then I started to reintroduce the gym again, getting some more structured workouts and at the same time, I also dove in and discovered another passion project, you know, something that more of a call it a hobby, I decided to do a stand up comedy course and then, yeah, so I did that and it was the scariest thing I’ve ever done and uh, but I knew it would challenge me and, and that happened that fall. So I had already started on this sort of path, but I knew I wanted a personal challenge, you know, I wanted something that was gonna put me way outside of that comfort zone as they say, and that was what identified would do that and uh, leaned in, did it, you know, we had a showcase show in front of 100 50 people and did a five minute set, I didn’t die, I’m still here.

So, you know, my, my worst fears weren’t realized and uh, you know, um, I signed up and I’m doing it again right now. So yeah, well we’ll see if I can do a to pete, well, I do what I do want to ask you about it, but just to just to summarize what you said about the, getting out of getting out of a rut. So it’s starting with walking introducing dooming a bit later and cycling positive messages in your ear when you’re, when you’re walking and focusing on your nutrition and your meditation. Anything else. In addition to that, I would add in little bits here and there, but they weren’t as as consistent and what I mean by that is I knew that those are the things that we just identified and you repeated, those are the ones that if I do it every day, good things happen, you know what I mean? Like just good things happen like I feel better and when I’m feeling better it’s interesting. But you know we we do have this particular activation system as the psychologist will maintain, right or the neuroscientists and this is part of our subconscious that basically helps us recognize the things that we want at times, you know?

And there’s they often use the old story of like yeah just imagine you want to buy a pink cadillac right? So all of a sudden you tell yourself I want a pink cadillac and it’s like you never remember seeing pink Cadillacs in the street or in parking lots or anything next thing you know, wow there’s a pink cadillac, oh my gosh I just saw another one and you know like and your subconscious becomes programs or at least sensitive uh to this want that we’ve we’ve established consciously. And so this particular activation system can work to our advantage and I know some people will call it the law of attraction and I’m sure that plays into it as well. But this idea of putting out there and getting our subconscious to help us realize some of these things can be used to our advantage, you know? And uh and for me I knew that there was some, I had done a lot of vision, you know that’s the advantage of journaling, journaling, we can write what’s real and what’s alive for us right now, but also we can start to set or cast some visions, you know, of what we want and what we’re working towards and in going through that process.

You know, we, we are letting the subconscious in on something saying, hey, you know, these are some things I really want and yet it gets to work. You know, when we’re sleeping, that subconscious is still running, you know, and when we wake up, it’s still here in the background. That program is always going And all of a sudden I started to find myself more aware of opportunities to lean in and, and do things that would make me feel good and, and things that would make me feel good in a healthy way. I should qualify that. Okay. And uh, and, and so that started to happen. You know, I get invited, hey, you want to go for a hike. Yeah. You know what I do? I know there’s a great invitation that’s aligned with the things that I’m wanting right now. Plus I want deeper connection with other people. Yes, I’m going to say yes to that. And so all of a sudden I found myself attracting these types of opportunities and, and I was very quick to say yes when when presented with those as long as it was in alignment with not only my values but my wants and my needs at that time, you know, and I do, I will tell this to everybody, you know, you have to get selfish about your own mental health, you know, you do like it as much as we’re going to look to others to support us with that, they can’t do it for us, you know, it’s still on us to do certain things, certain habits, making rituals to really take full ownership of the changes that we’re wanting.

If we’re not the ones that are instigating and pushing those forward, it might be a long wait waiting for somebody else to do that for us, if ever, you know, and believe me, I’ve been there and I realized this and all I can say is just, just start with one thing, And if walking, if you’re open to it, just walk 30 minutes a day, get outside have some fun, get some fresh air, listen to some good tunes or a positive message, maybe a Ted talk or an audio book, but just that will have an impact if you’re consistent with it. Just try it for one week, just one week and see how much can improve in just one week by doing that one activity, and then from there you can start to layer other things in. Um but but just start with the bare minimum and be consistent with it, and you’ve done your, your one week of walking, then you can progress to stand up comedy, right? Yeah, that’s right, yeah, maybe. What happened there, Why did you decide to do that?

Well, I had done the Ted x talk And I’ve been speaking professionally for, for almost 10 years now. So I’ve gotten to a place where, you know, I’m still afraid, I’ll be honest with you. Like I’m afraid I could get very intimidated before I go on a stage or before I speak in front of a group. There’s anxiety there for sure, you know, and but that’s anxiety I used to have as a kid too, you know, and to the point where I wouldn’t get in front of a group, a teacher would ask him, Remember in Grade eight, bursting out of that classroom, you know, in tears and running down the hall to the bathroom and locking myself in the stall like that. That is my memory of public speaking just to sort of give this some context. And uh, you know, fast forward a lot of years later as I identified other things I wanted in my life and wanted for myself, I realized that to make the impact that I wanted to make in the world, I was going to have to overcome that this fear of, of speaking of, of being seen in front of large groups.

Ah and you know, I I got to work doing that and fortunately for me, I I discovered a group called Toastmasters, a mentor recommended that to me, I won’t go into too much detail about what Toastmasters about, but it’s everybody has access to Toastmasters, everybody and it’s a nonprofit, it’s global, but it will help you become a more effective communicator as well as a better leader. You know, that’s, it’s, it’s a wonderful program in curriculum and it’s like, I mean, I think I spent about 100 $50 a year to have access to that curriculum and community Great deal again nonprofit. I tell some people like, just pretend it’s $10,000 because you should treat it as such, If you treat it like a $10,000 investment only though it costs 100 bucks. Trust me, you’ll get so much out of that, your life will change. And that’s what happened with me, my life changed because of that. Now. Fast forward, you know, a decade later, I’m like itching for a new challenge. And I’m also sort of embarking on this renewed health and wellness path for myself and and identified that, you know, stand up comedy.

Was that one of those things that I used to always say there’s no way in hell I will ever do that. And you know, I think we all say that about certain things right? Like we’re very, very steadfast in our decision, like no way I am never going to do that. And that was me about stand up comedy. And I started thinking, well why am I so negative against that? Why am I so anti that like what is really going on here and uh and I got to a point where I’m just like, you know what, forget I’m just gonna do this, we’re gonna do this course and uh I had a friend of mine, I had shared with him, you know this sort of intimidation I had with the the whole prospect of doing stand up comedy and uh he let me in on that, you know, he too was this is something that he loved to challenge and so this made it a lot easier to say, heck yeah let’s do this because I had one of my best friends doing it with me as well, so that made it a little bit well it made it more fun, okay, It did because we’d go to class together. We also we’re preparing our sets together, you know, like it was it was it was fun, it felt more collaborative, but also it’s nice to know that you got somebody there that’s feeling the same thing you are, you know?

And uh and so that’s what happened and it was a six week course and then at the end of the six weeks is a whole showcase where they do an actual show and and yeah, they just throw you right in and it was great, man, like I mean now I can see that and I’ll be honest for those that are watching this like if you go to um instagram or my facebook, like I’ve shared the videos there of, of the set and I didn’t share it out until after three months, you know, three months after I had, doesn’t show, I didn’t even watch it until three months later. That’s how intimidated and just the whole, I was like, okay, I’ve done it. I just, I got to push it away from now. You know, like I didn’t even look at it. I didn’t watch it. I didn’t share it. It was like one of those things, I was just like, uh and uh, and then I shared it back in january and uh, and I got some great feedback and some, some very complimentary words of affirmation, which just, you know, made me feel a bit more well, it made me feel better about the whole thing and it made me realize that I am my own worst critic like most of us are.

And uh, and at that point I decided I’m going to sign up and do it again. I like the pulling the walk out of the plughole bit or the £6.5 baby ewok. I have to snake free from the drain in the bathtub every other Tuesday. Yeah. Thanks man. That’s legit, it’s legit 33 women in my life and all have long hair. So you can imagine what those drains look like And I’m not much better. So I shaved my whole body. Oh sorry, what was that, the arm wrestle bit as well, laughed out loud with both of those. I’ve always told my daughters chardonnay and brie any boys that want to get close to you have to beat me in an arm wrestle. Mm hmm. Remember breeze friend tim going over the top. Boom. I’ve never seen a great three boy cry so much. Well, thank you. I appreciate that. This makes me, uh, makes you feel better and like I lost track as you see at the end of it. You know, I’m just like, I don’t know where I’m going.

Thanks bye. You know, I was just like, is it done yet? You know, it’s uh, but, but it was fun. You know, I have so much admiration for comics. Like so much like after doing this, I’m like, it’s one of the hardest and most challenging crafts in my opinion period. Like it is intimidating because everything rests on getting a laugh. They don’t rest on that. And when you’re up there and it’s quiet and no one’s laughing, it is a very um, revealing moment. Okay, So, uh, I’m probably not doing a very good job selling this for people that have been contemplating or maybe thinking about a new challenge, but, but believe me, you know, um, the fears are never realized. It’s never as bad as dying. Okay. So if you look at all the stats, they always say that, you know, the only fear that outpaces dying is public speaking. Well, believe me. Um, it’s not true, okay, it’s all true. It’s an irrational fear.

It’s all good. You’ll be all right. And just just do what I did and have about 40 of your friends show up in the audience, so you know, they’re gonna laugh no matter what. Well, I do think it was obvious when you got onto stage as well, that you’ve got some, you’ve got access to some things that other people don’t have. And that’s your enthusiasm and the way you move your body and everything like that. And I feel like they stuck you on this like little stage with a microphone that you had to be like in one place for. And yeah, I do think I could, you could do great things I think if you wanted to, but what we, what you’re trying to achieve with it would you say, well for me, like as I mentioned, I really do enjoy public speaking. I enjoy like doing keynotes or, or connecting with an audience and I realized that I’ve always wanted to bring more humor into it. And, and I know naturally, yes, you’re right, I’m quite animated when I’m on a stage. And that’s partially I’ve learned that because I’ve also realized by being that way it makes me less intimidating for people. And, and so it’s like a learned reaction, really intimidating because you’re a big buff guy is that I’m a big dude, you know, I’m 61, I’m like £210 and yeah, like I know I intimidate people.

I know that especially like I had 17 years working in sales, right? And retail sales where I was dealing with customers all day long and you know, I knew that that was always one of the biggest challenges I had, especially when trying to build rapport with people is, you know, especially I’m here selling fitness, I’m selling health, right? And you can imagine I’m just putting this into context for, you know, a married couple would come in and they might be 10, 20 years my senior. But you know, here’s the guy that’s bringing in his wife and they’re looking for some fitness equipment and you know, he’s maybe 40 £50 overweight and just because of life, you know, he’s he’s sort of falling out of health. I get it, we’ve all been there and I’m coming from a place of empathy, but he’s just looking at me, he’s looking at his wife and he’s looking at me and he’s like, you know, I can tell I make him very uncomfortable, I get it. But I found by being animated talking about my kids talking about my wife, like right away, you know, looking for that thing to diffuse the machismo, right? And we all got this, I mean as guys, and I know there’s guys that are like, no, I don’t, I don’t ever act like that.

I’m like, bull, okay, we all act like this. I know this is like the biggest thing that held me back from connecting with men was the machismo was this concern that if I was open and honest with other men that they would turn around and use what I would share against me when given the chance, you know, like this is my belief now, not to say that it was ever true, but that’s what I believed and as such, you know, when it came to interacting with other men, it was always like trying to size each other up like, and that was what I grew up with, okay, that was what was role model to me. So I didn’t have any other idea of what it meant to be a man and how to act and other than how I was and so as I started to, to work with mentors and I sort of dove into the space of wanting to connect wanting to deepen relationships, I realized I’m my own worst enemy because people are so quick to judge based on our appearances and it’s crazy because it drives me nuts because as you know, thomas I’ve shared with you before and those that maybe aren’t familiar with my story, I was morbidly obese as a team.

So you talk about judging covers, you know, um I believe that, you know, a lot of people judge me all the time based on my state of health. So you know, when we talk about things that we learned as kids, right and what we bring forward with us, definitely. There’s a lot of beliefs that I brought forward with me and as such, I wanted to change some of those and um, so you know, this animated body that trying to be very bright eyed and big on my expressions, it’s really a learned response to try to, to make other people feel more comfortable with me really. And that’s it. And I want to take it to another level. I want to make a greater impact and I look at stand up comedy as being that vehicle that could potentially help me with that and, but it’s intimidating, it’s scary and, and it’s hard, okay, Like there’s nothing easy about it. I mean I, I used to think it’s like these guys make it look so easy and then when you actually get to it it’s like, oh, that is way harder than they make it look and uh, but yet, you know, I like a challenge.

I do, I do. And so yeah, anyways, I hope that answers your question. Um, yeah, I just, um, in terms of where you wanted to go with it, so it was it strictly a personal development exercise for you or do you see yourself professional as well? Yeah, this, this is going to help me professionally already. I’ve, you know, some of the pieces that I’ve didn’t necessarily use in the five minute set. I have some other pieces that, that didn’t make it okay, but not that they weren’t good ideas, they just they weren’t well formed yet. Not not complete yet, but those are things that I can see complements a lot of my messaging as well as complements a lot of the ways that I want to help people and, and so intermingling some of the, this, this humor and getting much better at how to be humorous from the stage uh, is gonna only help me professionally when it comes to doing keynotes and anything else. Like it’s just we we both what, what, what’s the quote, Maya Angelou, you know, people may not remember what the things that you do, but they’ll always remember the way that you make them feel.

Now again, I might have butchered that, but you know what I mean? It’s that that whole idea that people remember how you make them feel above all else. I think we all remember when someone makes a slash, we all do. It’s a great feeling that dopamine and serotonin tickles our brain, right? And and we feel good and and there’s a connection there, there’s a certain level of respect that that has also achieved when we elicit that kind of response to somebody else and uh, and that was something that I wanted to be able to do more effectively and hence that’s why I’m doing this, you know, but it’s also for my personal challenge, Like, I mean, believe me, it’s I’m always looking for things that are gonna push me outside my comfort zone. And to date this has been the one that’s pushed me the hardest. I don’t doubt it for a second. I’m gonna I’m gonna throw you a curve ball. Are you ready? Let’s do it, throw it, throw it. What’s the meaning of life? Whoa, yikes! Okay, well that that that I always love this question because technically it’s a very subjective question. Yet we try to objectify it right?

Or or give something that’s very concrete and you know what I’ve got in brackets next to the question why if subjective what’s your meaning of life? Okay, I love it. Look at you thomas, I love how prepared you always are, man. Like this is so awesome, okay, because I love how you put that, because you know, any meaning that I give to life is my meaning of life and that, and I think that’s very true about this. I mean, yet we’re looking for the commonalities that we all have and can we align that and can we support each other, but we have to have a clear idea of what that is for us to before we can start that. And I remember when I first read man’s search for meaning Viktor frankel. I don’t know if you’re familiar with that book, but dr victor franko, beautiful book written back post Second World War and uh you know, he talks a lot and he’s the the grandfather of local therapy. And this is this whole idea of therapy through identifying our purpose or why our meaning in life. And because if we can get really clear on that a lot of barriers break down, but it also gives us a lot of clarity and confidence that the direction we’re heading in the right direction for us.

So you can see how that’s very empowering to just lean in and go for things, you know, and and and be happy and excited for that that journey. And for me after reading that book, I realized that maybe my definition, my subjective definition for the meaning of life wasn’t well thought out meaning that I hadn’t really spent much time asking myself that. So it’s really cool that you’re asking me this now because I haven’t really shared this with anybody, but for me, the meaning of life is really all about just the connections, the relationships that I’m able to to, to foster and the experiences I’m able to have with others, you know, and and the whole idea about elevating, evolving myself to the best version of me possible in whatever length of time I got here and then at the end of the day, whenever I go on to whatever that next part of the journey is, I hope I left this place better than it was when I got here, you know, was able to make an impact that matters. And for me that’s what life’s all about. You know, and uh obviously there’s values that I’ve identified that are very important to me family being one of them.

And, and so my filters when making decisions because a lot of people say, well, okay, well that’s that’s great. That’s your meaning of life. How do you do that? And I’m like, well, you need to have filters, you need to have direction. You need to be able to make decisions more quickly. And that’s where filters or conditional can help, right? If this then that well for me it’s it’s value based, you know, it, I can make decisions very quickly. If they align with my values. The lines on my values, I can say, yeah, this is great. This is a great fit. I can see how this benefits everybody or on the flip side is like, no, this doesn’t match my values. In fact, it’s going to take me away from my family. Take me away from my kids, great opportunity aligns with some of my other values. Like maybe there’s some financial gain that I’m looking for. There’s some professional sort of itch. I’m looking to itch yet if it’s gonna, you know, submarine or detract me from my ability to put the time in and energy into some other areas of my life. I have to make a decision had to be able to say yes or no.

And and for me it’s been really empowering, being able to say no a lot quicker as a result of going through this exercise and getting clear and what’s my meeting for life, you know, what are the things that are most important to me in my life? Non negotiables? And the interesting thing is a lot of us and I’m sure people are thinking hearing this all this all sounds fine and dandy, but how do you do this? Well you just need to lock yourself in a room and uh no, okay, maybe not lock yourself in a room but just just grab a piece of paper and start asking yourself what are some of the values that are most important to me, there’s free resources online. Burnett Brown has got some great free resources all about values and how to establish your value ladder and figure out what’s your top core values And just go through an exercise takes about 2030 minutes. But once you’ve done it and you get to that top five, well now you’ve got these top five values and you can start to use those to help you give direction but also confidence that you’re going the right direction when it comes to your life. And does it align with what your meaning for life is because once that happens, whoa watch out, like it’s just it just feels life feels a little bit lighter.

Okay, it just does and yeah. Anyways that’s sort of my thoughts on that, which you wouldn’t know about that. So go ahead. Yeah. Yeah. What I love about that answer is not only did you give me the answer, but you also told other people how they can find their answer. Because I know they’re thinking it was very cool. Well, you know, they’re thinking right? I know everybody’s thinking it like and that’s the thing, I was trying to at least share what’s been working for me, you know, as far as figuring this out, because listen, I’m as I always tell my clients, I’m like, you know what, I’m only a couple of paces ahead of you. All right. I don’t have all the answers far from it, but I’m a couple of paces ahead on the journey and I know we’re on similar journeys. So at the very least I can point out where the potholes are. So you don’t trip. And at the very least, you know, these are some of the exercises that have helped me get to where I am. So maybe they can support you as well. And and and that’s all I can do is invite people to just do a little bit of work because that’s what it comes down to right at the end of the day.

Just got to have some focused time and attention to these subjects that we’re talking about today. The thing is I know some of us get really intimidated about it. I know I used to because I I just was like, well it’s just too big of a concept And I felt it almost to two limiting if I was going to start to define things. But then, you know, that was foolish because if you don’t define anything, then it’s there’s no boundaries, there’s no guidelines. It’s like any direction will do. And then I would find myself feeling lost, confused, very unmotivated to the point where procrastination was my best friend, right? Like, you know, like, you know, I know I could probably go and do some of this, but I’m not really sure if that’s what I want to be doing. Yeah, I’m gonna go watch another netflix series, you know, like and that’s also why what we’re talking about here thomas, like if people take anything away from our conversation so they just figure out what your core values are. Figure out what’s the non negotiables in your life. And and if you then embark in the time after that and use those values like a flashlight on down a dark hallway, you can now illuminate that darkness and you can have clarity and assuredness of every step along the way.

Now there’s gonna be doorways, you’re gonna pass in that dark hole, right? And you’ll have the option, you’ll see the doorways, you can say I don’t want to go in this one do not want to go on this one. Well this is where the values come in. You know, there might be a sign on those doors and it might be family, you know, there might be career, there might be something else. And now you have to ask. Okay, well, am I aligned with these? Is this the door I want to go through, but if it wasn’t illuminated, you didn’t have clarity of values, couldn’t see the footing in front of you. Any door is going to do, but you’re gonna spend a lot of time, a lot of energy and probably feel very frustrated that you’re not progressing the way that you always envision yourself progressive. And and so this is where this I mean, I love that you asked this today thomas. I mean, I really do. I really thank you for asking this and I hope people take this away today and then go and figure out what their core values are because I know it will just make such a difference. It will make all the difference. But it’s a start. Well, I also did I ordered the book. It took me a while to order the book, but it is on the way. I’m not sure whether you’re aware of that. But I do know that I’m limited on, I have to do a reorder on books.

So it’s thank you for that. I appreciate it. But you probably have to source it from Timbuktu and it’s taken a little while to get to you. I’m sorry about that. That’s no worries. So I’m going to introduce a few of those, those values into my life. Are you successful? Yes. Yes. And um, I should qualify what I mean by success. I know that that’s probably the follow up question of anything, but uh, My idea of success changed a lot over the last 12 going on 13 years now. You know, I was very much my success was tied to Ego. Alright. Like really big tie in meaning that a lot of the things that I geared as being successful is really just things that would prop up my Ego. And the more I tried to prop up me going, this is talking about money is talking about stuff toys, cars, you know, things that other people can perceive and recognize as being, whoa, look at that must be successful because that was my belief and what success was, it was often tied to monetary gain and how much you had of stuff and that’s what I thought, you know, like, and not, I’m not saying it’s wrong.

Okay, it never felt right for me, felt a little bit empty was also a big part of why I would spend so much time drinking, you know, or doing other things other than actually trying to live my best life because I was feeling very unfulfilled when I went through some challenging times. I’m not going to go into the whole thing if people want to know what happened, they can listen to one of our first conversations or the Ted X talk? You know, I talked about it a lot more in those, those, those conversations, but you know, for me it was a reevaluation of what success meant and and I have to hand it to my wife, you know, Christy was just so empowering, but also that voice of reason, because for her, she’s never been motivated by money. Ever capital game doesn’t matter now, of course she wants, she likes money, she’s not against money, but she loves money and the impact it can make in other people’s lives and and we’ve been very fortunate that we have some very good friends of ours that are very generous to a fault at times, you know, I know that they’ve been taking advantage of, but they don’t care, they do have a very abundant life abundant financially and to see the impact that they’re making in communities locally and globally, that’s so inspiring to us.

So we love that aspect and so, you know, we’ve sort of reframed our relationship with money as a result, but we shifted And our idea of success for over the last 10 years has been this idea of of being rich in life and rich in life experiences, so we’ve become collector of experiences, collectors of connection, you know, um that is what we really gauge our success on, It’s like how many lives have we made an impact in this year? You know, have we been able to support our kids to be the best humans that they possibly can be? You know, are we helping our local communities as well as our global communities? You know, are we doing well to support them as well? And so these are all sort of play into success for us and to have a lifestyle that allows us to do what we want when we want with the people that we we choose to to be with. It has been very important to us and uh and so that’s sort of been the trajectory that that we’ve been on and you know, our values help us keep the straight and narrow, so to speak and that’s sort of what to us is success today.

You know, it’s really about the relationships and the connections that were able to, to foster and nurture and and the changes and impacts that we can make as a result. Thank you for the qualifier. I love the immediate yes by the way they’re your your answer reminded me a little bit about because I look at these for these questions in advance for prep for the episode. And one of the questions is can money buy happiness? And I absolutely love the the answer of yes, but only if you give it away and it makes me think of what your, what your answer was there contribution is huge huge. Another completely random one for you, this is a Aladdin style, you get three wishes, what would you wish for in the entire world? Oh my gosh thomas, that’s such a good question. Holy, I wow, what would I wish for? Well, you know, I I probably the standard ones, you know, I would wish for, I look at the conflict that’s happening right now in Ukraine and I just think it’s so just uncalled for, you know, and and again, I’m not a expert in politics or government policy, but it doesn’t seem like there’s a lot of meaning to this one and for me, I I just, I’m not a big fan of fighting, you know, at least this kind of fighting.

So one wish would be, I don’t think I would be so naive to say peace on earth, you know, like I think that’s a very cliche and standard answer, but I would like I would wish for more human ways of resolving conflict, you know, more humane way of dealing with conflict rather than guns and weapons of mass destruction. I mean we’re all capable people and to get in a room and actually have a conversation to work things out. I think it’s definitely doable and I think we’re mature enough and evolved enough to be able to do that. So, so that would be one wish, alright, I am second to, that would be, you know, I would love to, I mean selfish here, I would love to be able to live forever. I know that’s like, you know, people have said that and they’re like, no you don’t you don’t want to live forever, Everybody dies. Well, I’m like, well, okay, but if I could live forever when other people will live there forever, you know, like, and and maybe I have to define, how would I want to live forever, right? Maybe that’s more do I want to be uploaded to a cloud before I die? I mean, I don’t know right, but I am a big sci fi fan and I love that that idea, but for me, it’s purely to be able to see what’s coming, you know, like, I would love to see what’s going to happen in the future, you know?

And for me it’s not like I wish I could see the future, I don’t wish I could see the future, I wish I could live in the future, right? Like I could live and and see the changes as they’re happening and that gets me really excited, you know, what about my great grandkids? My great, great, great, great, great great grandkids were really on Earth snow, like, These are questions I think about, right? And so that would be the 2nd 1 before you go onto your third wish. One of the questions on my list is if you could live forever, would you choose to go With what’s number three, Well number three, that would be tough. You know, I’d have to really think on it, but I guess, you know, being put on the spot right now, like, well I’d like to see world hunger not be a challenge anymore. I I really wish that away, you know, like I just think it’s, it’s silly because I look at certain countries that have excess in a lot of waste and I see other countries that right, they love to have some waste, you know, and and it just makes me realize it’s such a disparity all across the world from country to country.

And, and I don’t know, I’m not listen, I don’t believe in communism, communism. Okay, So like, you know, it’s kind of slippery slope if I want to say I want everybody to be equal. Um, but what I would like to see is like, you know, I don’t, I think we have enough big brains and a lot enough capital and money and resources on this planet to see what they’ve done with the pandemic last two years, the entire world was mobilized on this one, the entire world, everybody, so that tells me that if we actually put our heads together and dealt with the, the whole um, food issues globally, I think we can fix it. You know, I don’t think there’s anybody that needs to be starving, anybody, you know? And, and so that’s one big wish I would like to, to, to see happen and then, but and I’d like to see it happen in my lifetime, you know, I don’t need a genie wish to make it happen. I think if we all put our heads together, I think it can be done. I don’t think it’s anything that’s not unreasonable, you know? So anyways, that’s sort of the other ones. Yeah, thank you for answering. I think the last one I think is going in the right direction anyway, so I think a positive note there, I hope so, you know, I really do.

If everyone spoke their mind, would the world be a better place? Well, I guess if they’re talking more like a bunch of stoics, you know, sort of from that logical place, putting emotions at the side then yes, but the problem is is we’re humans, you know, and and and we’re not humans being emotional, we just we are emotional humans, you know, we’re emotional human beings and being the sentient beings, you know, that have a lot of feelings. Uh I I wish people could speak their minds and everybody would, but to separate the emotion from that, especially when you’re in a heated place, Like I look at Putin, right, I’m like, I don’t know how much logic is being used, but there is a whole lot of emotion, you know, and and ego driving that train and uh as a result, you know, like that’s my only qualm with that, right? My my concern is that yeah, I I’d like to think that it would be a better place. But if we don’t separate the emotion, I don’t think it would be. I look at the bigotry, I look at the chauvinism, like my gosh, you just go on the internet and watch the news today and we already know, it’s like, I don’t know, speaking your mind is doing us any favors, you know?

So yeah, Didn’t go in the right direction with that one, did we? Well, I want to, I like to say yes, like I honestly feel we can, but I think there’s a lot of people are going to need some some serious training on effective communication, like I think that’s what it’s going to boil down to, but if we had that kind of support and we were able to create that kind of a safe environment to be able to speak your mind without any fear of repercussions, you know, to actually able to talk through it, to come to some sort of resolve. Yeah, I think the world would be great for that, but I just don’t know if we’re capable of it yet, you know, what type of legacy do you want to leave behind? Well, it’s similar to what I said before or, you know, I don’t know if I shared this before, but I’d like to inspire a million role models, that’s what I’m sort of working towards role models. So a million people to to be just aspiring to be their best versions. And so as such there there in this forever, never ending learning, you know, and growing and until the day they leave and but I know as role models, we have the opportunity to inspire other role models, other leaders and and to to really influence change just by showing up and trying to be our best versions.

So that’s one legacy I’d like to leave a million romans because I know that has the possibility of impacting tens if not hundreds of millions, you know? And uh outside of that, it’s also, you know, my leaving this planet better than it was when I got here. And and hopefully my kids can pick up the torch and continue down that path and uh you know, not to be. Uh well I’m just gonna say it, you know, my kids are freaking awesome kids and I I feel I I trust them and I would give them the keys to this planet today if if given the opportunity because I think they could do a better job than many of us have. You know? So uh what is friendship? Uh friendship to me is, you know, deep connection, understanding, but without any expectations right? Or expectations of any sort of reciprocation. Um you know, like for me that’s what friendship is, it’s an unconditional connection and you know, I’d go as far as they love and respect.

So that’s that’s sort of what friendship is to me. But it always comes from a place of truth. You know, like I’m once a friend lies to me. It’s, it’s really hard to rebuild that. You know, when trust goes, it’s gone and it may never come back. Are you a good friend? I like to think I am. Yes. Yeah. Can I improve? Have I made mistakes? Yeah, for sure. I like to think I’m still evolving. But you mentioned telling the truth is it’s always wrong to lie. And when, if ever is it okay, this is a slippery slope, right? Like it’s a tough one. And um, have I lied? Oh gosh, have I lied maliciously? Yes, I have. You know, like, yeah, I’ve done some things I’m not, I’m not proud of. I’m not going to hide from them. Like I’ve done them. Uh you know, especially when I was at my worst when I was drinking a fair bit. Like I made some really poor decisions and I wasn’t very respectful for some people that I would have called friends, you know, they would have called me a friend and I wasn’t acting very friendly.

Uh, so as a result of knowing that and and also being on a path where I’m like, I’m not doing that again, It’s made my relationships a lot more, I guess significant. You know, like deeper, more connected and I have fewer friends today than I did 10 years ago, to be honest, I have a lot more acquaintances today, but really truthfully down to real friends, I have a lot fewer. Um but I’m looking for quality, not quantity and uh and for me to truly open up and you know be completely transparent and that with people it takes time right, Like any of us, like the trust is usually earned and for me, I know it takes a little while for me too to earn somebody’s stress and I expect the same in return. You know what is the biggest waste of human potential? Well I I love technology. Okay, I really do. I think technology is cool, I think it’s definitely making in some instances and and situations it’s making a little better.

But I also know it’s it’s created a lot of complacency and laziness alright. And especially when it comes to just empowering us to to learn and grow. I I mean just google it is like the ongoing thing, oh I don’t need to know that I’ll just google it and I’m like, well there comes a point where knowledge is a pretty good thing, you know, like just building our own wisdom or are practical knowledge as well is really important. And and so when I meet people that are not motivated to grow, you know personally or professionally or to learn new things to evolve to to see themselves evolve as a human being. I just think what a waste of so much potential, you know, and I’m not here to judge them and I won’t judge, I’m not here to pass judgment man, I’ve had enough people pass judgment on me, I know what it feels like and it’s it’s not positive and even as being someone that passes judgment in those situations, I never felt good for doing it, you know?

And as such, I just I really feel because I just think there’s so much potential for them, you know? And and with that potentiality comes a lot of happiness and fulfillment and joy and I just see them limiting that in their lives, you know that’s the result and uh and I know that that’s the thing that most of us identify we want more of and so I’m just like what the heck? You know on one side you say you want more of that, but on the other side you’re not willing to do anything to actually go after it or to learn how to obtain it. And that’s where that big gap, that’s the waste of potential, you know? So yeah that’s that’s what you’re gonna is that what you’re gonna say to me if I ask you another one of these existential questions. Yeah. Yeah. No no no I actually appreciate these questions man, you’re making me have to think so early in the morning, well I appreciate your answers, I think you’re a fantastic guest and I do you know I had a look at all the social stuff and you put out a lot of great content over the years going back quite a way now.

So thank you for all that. Do you have any closing thoughts for us today? Well, thomas I I just got to say to you thank you. You know, like this is a very different conversation. I know when we were exchanging some emails, you had alluded that it would be a bit different than our first conversation and it really was and uh I enjoyed this. I really did. And you made me think, you know, and and when I mean, it made me think I really just think about things that yeah, required not only imagination, but it’s also an evaluation of what I’ve been doing, you know, like up to now, but also it’s kind of forward setting because some of those questions were very forward paste right? Like, and it made me think things that I’m doing now, Are they actually bringing me closer to that, whether it’s a potential reality or not, am I doing things right now to make that a likely outcome. And I’m like, hmm, I don’t know if I’m really doing all that I could be or or to the best way. So anyways, I really thank you for those questions and uh as far as closing closing remarks, I mean I’m just like, thank you for the opportunity.

I love that you’re you’re putting out this type of question to everybody that’s listening and watching this, you know, like I think these are great questions for all of us to open up a blank page in our journal, put these questions at the top and just play Explorer. Right? And so that’s my invitation to those that are privy to this conversation today. You know, take something that you’ve heard and apply it because it’s that applying of this knowledge, that your own internal wisdom will be created and, and achieved. And, and that’s what’s gonna make the world better, right? Is each of us taking that full ownership and doing that. So that’s, that’s my call to action or, or more appropriately my invitation to those listening and watching to give that a go and and reach out to me on social, let me know how it went. I was going to The next question was if people want to connect with you, where do they go? If you can spell my name, you’ll find me easy. Now I know my spelling, my name is a little bit interesting. Die Welsh name for David, D. A. I. Manuel Portuguese last name and as I say, I’m Canadian through and through.

So it’s all good but dime and well is my handle on every social platform. I’m most active on facebook instagram and linkedin. So if you want to have a conversation and you want me to get back to you fairly promptly talk on those three channels. If you send me a Tiktok, I may or may not ever get back to you. Okay? Like I’m still not fully into the Tiktok thing, my kids all over it. Um, me not so much so facebook instagram and linkedin as my kids say, oh, that’s the old school stuff, but that’s where I play. So there you go. Alright, well for everyone listening, please review the links in the description, die. Thank you for your contribution and you’re being a great guest today Thomas, thank you so so much. I can’t wait until our next conversation.