#191 – Conscious Communication With Jem Fuller

Thomas Green here with Ethical Marketing Service on the episode today we have Jim Fuller, Jim welcome. Thank you very much for having me along thomas. It is my pleasure. Would you like to take a moment and tell the audience a bit about yourself and what you do? Yeah, absolutely. 50 years old partner between the two of us, we’ve got four teenagers. I live in a small town on the surf coast down in victoria Australia, lots of good waves to catch. I work as a coach, essentially leadership coach.

My clients are executive and senior level leaders across government, Private and not for profit sectors. That’s the bread and butter stuff. I’ve been running leadership retreats in the remote mountains of the Himalayas in North India since 2014 and also in the jungles of Northern bali as well. Since that same time period, recently published a book, The art of conscious communication for thoughtful men and ted X talk one. Open mindedness Matters two. Consideration matters three, teaching the next generation matters. Um so yeah, happily, happily busy, not, not busy as a badge of honor, busy as I love what I do and I’ve got lots of it going on. So yeah, that’s me, well done for all that of all the things that you’ve mentioned in your introduction, at least work wise anyway, what do you tend to lead with when you’re speaking to people about what you do depends who I’m talking to, You know, and it depends whether they actually care or not, if it’s just a throwaway question like, oh hey man, what do you do?

But they don’t actually care about the answer, I’ll just say leadership coach, but if it’s someone who I think is actually genuinely interested we might dive a little more into the functionality of humans, especially leaders because they have a ripple effect. We might talk about how important healthy workplace cultures is because we spend a lot of time at work and as humans we need each other right? We’ve only been able to evolve successfully through socialization and working in community. So there’s an opportunity for us to get better at working together. If people are really interested, I talk about things that I care about, like harnessing the power of diversity and the difference when we disagree on something that’s where I’m interested, that’s what I want to lean into because you know, all the stuff we agree on. That’s fine, that’s easy. But when you and I have a differing opinion to me, there’s potential there for solving bigger problems, okay and the locations that you do, your leadership coaching or your retreats, you said, what’s the, what’s the story behind that?

Yeah, the main story is behind this little village in Himachal Pradesh which is a state in northern India, directly north of Delhi and I stumbled across this village back in the 90s when I was backpacking and particularly this family that I fell in love with and ended up living with for three months initially. And then over the years I’ve spent a lot of time, they’re they’ve become my second family. But the first time I was living there, I was in my late twenties and I just had this strong feeling, I was going to take people there, I didn’t know under what context my premise back then was nature therapy. I just had this feeling to get people from my my home which is in Australia, but any Western city away from their computers and TVs and suits and ties and you know, the normal paradigm and just get them back into stunning, stunning nature. You know, that was the original premise and my mate over there who is um you know, I think of him now as a brother, he’s a conservationist by heart and he said, well if you’re going to bring people over here, let’s go tracking and let’s pick up rubbish In the mountains.

So this was over 20 years ago, we had these ideas and then sometime later I was a coach, a leadership coach. And the idea dawned on me to run leadership retreats there. So I started doing that. And sure enough, we trek very remotely, we take pack horses and tents and we get completely off the grid, but there’s no people where we go and we pick up rubbish, we take a couple of extra horses with empty bags and we pick up rubbish. And since then we’ve funded a rubbish collection and education program for the locals and the shepherds up there, we’ve funded the building of a small school in the village as well. So yeah, I’ve become a part of that community and until Covid we were there every year and just with the restrictions, we haven’t been able to last couple of years, but we’re looking forward to going back. That is amazing in terms of the reception you get from that. I mean, just thinking it purely from my perspective, the thoughts of maybe going into that type of environment. I mean, I can only tell you what my initial preconceptions are because I’ve never been, but it would be kind of like, it sounds absolutely amazing.

But when you’re actually considering going there might be some, should we say, some conflict in terms of like the unknown, I don’t really know what to expect versus, oh my God, I think it would be so good to get away from, I don’t know, the dizziness and the, as you say, the tech side of things. What sort of reception or what sort of questions do you get around around going? Yeah. You know, how safe is it? How much do I need to worry about? Do I need to organize, what do I need to organize? Um, you know, two weeks, it’s a two week from the time you leave home to the time you get home, it’s two weeks, you know, so only a certain, it’s usually business owners that come, but it has to be business owners that have got their business to a level of functionality such that they can leave it for two weeks. A lot of business owners, whether it’s, whether it’s just conceptual or actual, A lot of business owners can’t leave their business for two weeks. Um, so yeah, there’s a lot of trepidation, especially for people who haven’t been there before. Having said that for the clients, their hand is held the whole time.

You know, from the moment you arrive in Delhi, you don’t have to do anything. I’ve got everything organized and covered, but you are being injected into a culture that’s very different from your own and where we trek. You know, you’ve got to train for it. We’re not just, it’s not a walk in the park. We track up to 5000 m, you’re camping sometimes above the snow line, you’re going to the toilet in the bushes. You know, there’s no hot showers. So it’s it’s rough and ready, but at the same time it’s only for a certain type of person. But everyone that’s come on, it has had a life defining experience. So I think it’s worth it. Who is that person? Yeah. Who is that person? It’s obviously someone with an adventurous spirit, someone who is dedicated enough to their own personal growth or there or they have a value system around expanding into their potential as a person or a leader or a business owner. They think that they can continue to improve and they’re ready to, you know, invest time energy and money and risk into that, you know, so it’s not it’s not it’s certainly not everybody.

In fact, it’s pretty hard program for me to fill. Um you know, maybe I should change my mindset around that. But that’s just my experience. It’s not easy to get people on this program. And you mentioned people that go on it have breakthroughs. Can you share some of what that might be? Some examples of that. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. A lot of the breakthroughs come on day five of the track, which is day eight of the program. And so by this stage the group has settled in with each other. I tend not to take more than a dozen people because then the group can become too big and you get groups within the group if we keep it around 10 to 12 people, the group stays as one group And then on the start of day five around the fire in the morning when we’re eating our porridge and having our cup of tea I say to everybody. So today we spend the day in silence. We spend the whole day not a word spoken, people are like well okay that’s something. And then I let them know that we’re going to be walking slowly today and we walk really slightly so slowly that in the first half an hour I can almost see peoples brains exploding going, I car certainly cannot walk this slowly all day up here, we’ll never get anywhere kind of thing.

And then one by one they drop into this beautiful meditative state. It’s really quite profound. And then at the end of the day when we bring language back into it and we’re building the fire around the camp, everybody in their own way comes up to me and says jim this was just the most profound day of my life. So that doesn’t quite answer your question. Your question was, in what ways is it life defining for people, certainly a perspective on life in general that they’ve never had before. So really, really taking a big quantum step towards not sweating the small stuff, putting putting stuff in perspective and seeing my family and how simply they live with such little cash and how happy they are living So simply is I think that’s quite profound slowing down. You know, everything in India is a bit slower and especially when we’re tracking in the mountains and the western mindset or psychology is when do we get to the top, you know, and the program is we’re not getting anywhere, there’s no objective, we’re not trying to get to the top of the mountain, we’re just walking.

So that in itself is a nice mind shift. And because they’re experiencing this, it’s not just like taking a bunch of executives to a conference room in a hotel and sharing these philosophical concepts with them. They’re walking and breathing and living it. So the experiential takeaway lands more I think. And so when they come home, there’s a lot of support for them. When they come home, I certainly don’t want them making any kind of rash decisions like I’m going to leave my husband or wife or I’m going to sell my business or anything in the post trip euphoria. It’s just don’t make any rash decisions right now. Just let it all settle and they settle and we stay in touch quite frequently for 6 to 12 months after the program. But people change the way they lead. You know, the content that I teach over there is around human behavior around conscious leadership, how to be more mindful, how to emotional regulation for you as a leader, how to be the calm in the storm, how to read people more effectively, how to design a healthy culture, you know, how to get people engaged with your mission and vision and values all this kind of stuff.

So we’re doing all this content stuff before we track. So there’s a bunch of really cool content. I just think that because we teach it in such a foreign and remote location, it kind of opens up the bandwidth of their of their creativity, their thinking spectrum kind of is wider. Um so yeah, it kind of lands differently too if we just did it at home and the not making a decision when you when you get back. Mm Is that from experience? Um meaning that you you you’re aware already as from examples that have happened or is that just from, you know, a theory. Did you did you learn that? I don’t know man, I don’t know. I do remember I do remember a psychologist saying to me when I had the idea for this program and I was putting it together and I hadn’t run it yet and I was having a chat with someone who had met who was a psychologist who also ran leadership programs in the wild here in Australia.

And they gave me those words of advice. They said don’t just take them on this amazing experience and then send them home on a plane and leave them be that’s irresponsible. You need to stay in touch with them because for some of them it might be quite profound and I would encourage you to encourage them not to make big decisions, you know, in the in the euphoric state post trip because it’s better to come back to a place of being a bit more calm and rational I think. And what do you hope that they get from it perspective? Yeah, that’s the main thing to broaden our perspective. You know, we as humans, we just, the way we’re wired, we get very blanket, we have our ideas on how things are idea on reality confirmation bias. For example, we seek out information that backs up the way we think things are we push aside or ignore or delete information that’s contrary to our beliefs. We think there’s only one way when our when our ideology or politics or philosophical understanding which we identify with when it’s challenged, we get super defensive, we shut people down, we don’t want to listen.

And so we were a species were pretty close minded generally speaking and I think there’s a lot to be said for us teaching ourselves to loosen our Greg, you know, in the way we think things should be and that as a leader, really, it’s not about having all the answers, it’s about creating an environment where the people that you work with or who work for, you can offer opinions or ideas or suggestions or crazy ideas that you wouldn’t have come up with, you know, I think if the broader the pool of input to a problem solving situation the better the outcome is going to be or the solution because I mean how many times have you been on the trip approximately? Eight times now. Okay. And would you say it gets it gets more positive for you each time you do it? I certainly, I certainly have relaxed into the program funnily enough it hasn’t changed much from the download moment that I had when I had the idea it was one of those light bulb moments and it felt like I downloaded the whole thing in five minutes.

I was having a moment just going oh my God, this is what it is and this is what the company is called and this is how it looks and this is what we do and really kind of all of the the macro framework of the program. I got it in five minutes. The micro content and the details I filled out and I went and did a Recchi and a risk assessment on the whole program so that we could set up a company and do it due diligence, etcetera, insurance, blah blah blah. But the actual bigger picture stuff I got it in five minutes and it hasn’t really changed much since then. I’ve just relaxed into the program. I have also brought my partner on. So since starting the program I fell in love with my beautiful current partner and she works with me and and went from a support role to slightly co facilitating role as well. She she brings a really beautiful energy to the whole program. And she holds this this beautiful mother nurturer space of the program. People feel really safe around her and they feel that they’ve got someone else that they can share their experiences with when we’re tracking rather than just me as the facilitator.

So yeah, we run it together. And my brother pappu over there, my indian mountain brother, he’s very much a leader on the program. So we’re in his hands and he’s tracking guides when we’re tracking and they get us safely through the mountains. They’re all qualified guides and they know the mountains like the back of their hands. So we’re very much in his hands when we’re tracking. Well, congratulations on the finding your partner, You seem like a fairly chilled dude. Is that fair to say? That is pretty fair to say. And then what is that the case? Was that the case for you before you went on these trips? Or is it a result of all this perspective you’ve gotten, Yeah, look at the result of lots of things. Um I’ve been meditating, You know, I’ve had a proper dedicated practice to meditation now since 2014 I had kind of dallied with meditation over the years of traveling around the world but never seriously never committed to it or created a habitual practice of it.

And so since 2014 that’s become habitual and it’s mindfulness meditation that I practice. I attribute a lot of my childress, so to speak to that, but also other perspectives that you know that I’ve learned and been taught and just made up. But understanding really that you know, if I’m if I’m frustrated with someone, that’s my frustration, you know, that’s not their business really. In fact the way that you behave, the way that you think talk moved, everything you do is actually not my business. You know, if you ask me for two to contribute ideas or whatever, I’m sure I’ll share with you ideas, but what you do with that is your business, not mine, you know? And so yeah, I’ve been really working at being the driver of my own physiological bus. I want to be, I want to be the one who has more to say about my emotional psychological state rather than it being in the hands of others, you know?

So yeah, and then the to say the promise of the it’s probably not the right word promise, but the that the leadership side of the of what you provide is kind of like a has a business context. But would you say that the the personal improvement is maybe more important to you or is it kind of like a win win where as you improve as a person, it also improves the business. Yeah. Um Yes. To what you just said on my, the part of my website that hosts my online courses, the tagline is personal development for professionals. So I mean I’ve got leaders in different sectors and in different industries doing different things and I can’t teach them how to run their business because I don’t know their business. What I’m helping them with is their own functionality as a leader as a person. And so yeah, we talk about some human behavioral understandings and you know how to read people and their and their behavioral styles better and their fears and their certainties and how to understand human behavior better.

So you can be a better leader. But essentially it’s got to start with you right. I mean, no matter how good you are on the tools that your your capability is capped by your personal functionality. Yeah. And you’re the common denominator in all the different roles you play in your life, whether it’s you with your partner or kids or whether you’re at work with your business and your team or your clients. You’re the common denominator. And so it’s you it’s the common denominator that I’m working with to help you improve your functionality. I did think at one stage. So I’ve kind of gone back and forward on this particular point, initially I was like, you know, you’re the driver of your business and that’s it and then I sort of went to the point where we’ll actually, you know, if you if you’re running a fairly large business then really it’s about the process is because all the all the people in your business are doing the work is not necessarily you. Um And then I heard that um the culture which is something that you touched upon, it goes from the top down and that kind of creates the company.

If if it influences the culture then it creates the behavior which then creates the company you touched on company culture. Is there something that you’d like to share on that particular topic which is meaningful to you? Yeah. Yeah, for sure. I think that um culture and then systems processes. These are the spaces that we should make our decisions in. We should be running our decisions as leaders through the litmus test of what is best going to serve our higher purpose as an organization. Why are we here? Why do we exist as an organization? What what are are agreed values? How do we all agree is the best way for us to show up here. How are we going to get the best results Behavourally and we’ve agreed upon that and everyone’s bought into that and our vision. So 5, 10 years from now, what do we want to look like? So this is the litmus test of the culture and then the process is what are the things that we comply to? What are the ways we do things that we’ve set up first you do this, then you do this when this happens you do this blah blah blah, right?

So when a decision needs to be made, it’s made through these levels. And then when we execute the decision, so when we actually show up and do the do that’s down on the levels of implementation which is the doing the discipline of the systems and then the p is the personal level which is at the functional end of the spectrum of the personal level is emotional intelligence, consideration, care, compassion, all of these things at the dysfunctional end of the personal spectrum is Externalizing and blame and defensiveness and you know, the not so functional human behaviors, right? So all of these four levels of a business are as important as each other for different reasons. But certainly if we’re making a decision, should we expand into this town and build another factory? Or should we hire this person or should we cut back the work for any of the big harder decisions? The best decision will come from the culture and the processes. It doesn’t it shouldn’t be personal because we’re serving the business. And this is just if you don’t mind me elaborating just a little bit on this thomas for business owners who birthed the business, it was their idea, conception, you know, and then through the gestation of it and then the birthing of the business into the world and they started and then there they’re raising this business from being an infant to being a teenager and then hopefully becoming an independent business that doesn’t need them anymore, which is the idea of it.

But understandably, they’ve very much identified with the business as being a part of who they are. So there’s a tendency for business owners to take things really personally. You know, if a team member turns up and is not showing up values aligned or doesn’t care about the business as much as the business owner does or behaves in a way that’s just unacceptable. The business owner takes it personally. How dare you do that in my business. And there’s real opportunity for business owners to now separate and individual weight allow the business to be its own entity. You’ve created this thing, allow it to be independent, right? You don’t need to take it personally when someone doesn’t show up the way you want them to Sure you need to hold them accountable, sure you need to create an environment and systems that incentivize the right behaviors and when people don’t show up in the right way, sure you’ve got to have conversations around accountability and support so that they do. But when they don’t you don’t need to take it personally, it’s not about you. You know, we tend to take everything so personally one of the things that I learned.

I mean, it’s it’s not exactly kind of in line with what you were saying, but I mean, it’s just so profound for me. I thought it might be helpful is that because people think like leadership is all in kind of business context a lot of times. But for me, one of the biggest mindsets which is I had on it was around and looking, looking at it the same way as you would parenting. So if I’m not mistaken, you in the beginning, you said about the fact that you’re also parents, all right. And if you use some of those same principles that you would in your business, then you would in your personal life. I mean you would because there’s no way you’d give up on like a child just because they weren’t exhibiting the right behaviors. And I’ve just taken those principles over from being a parent into your business. I just think it’s so it’s like a complete mindset switch for me. Do you think about that? Yeah, I agree. It’s it’s funny you know, when when I bring up that analogy with leaders, they all kind of chuckle and you want to be careful because you don’t want to, you don’t want your employees, the people that work in your business, you don’t want them to think that you’re calling them Children because they might get offended.

It’s not about that. But the parallels are there. They’re really their kids will push the boundaries. Staff will push the boundaries, kids are reliant on you to begin with until they grow up, you know and staff when people first come into your organization, they’re necessarily reliant they don’t know what they’re doing but your job as a parent and your job as a leader is to help them become have some autonomy to help them become responsible, to help them feel safe to make decisions and look after themselves and then become leaders within their own role. And it’s so yeah, there’s a lot of parallels between the two for sure. Mhm. And I didn’t feel like the, it might be a bit of a cliche but you know that sort of hard nosed business person who’s just willing to fire people without much consideration. It really didn’t fit me very well. Whereas the the parenting type approach, it kind of fits me perfectly. So I kind of like that. Thank you for sharing all of your, not all but a lot of what goes on with the with the leadership, what do you call retreats, is that what you call them?

Yes. So there’s the retreats in the Himalayas and in bali and then there’s the The bread and butter stuff here where I work as a 1-1 coach with leaders and then facilitate workshops for teams any um Examples you want to share of either from your 1-1 stuff or your retreats around how it’s changed people for you know that you’re particularly proud of. Yeah man, I’m look I I’m proud of um helping laters figure out how to become more human centric. I think it’s really important. I also think it’s really important these days that the changes that need to happen and are happening. It’s more than just equality in terms of gender equality. I mean, yes, gender equality is important. That’s obvious to me. It’s obvious anyway. It’s more than that. It’s about feminine and masculine energy style equality, right? Because there’s no point in us putting females into decision making roles, which should happen, but there’s no point in putting them into those roles, but not changing the structure and saying the only way you can be successful is as a man would in a masculine way, right, That defeats the purpose.

I believe we need to be bringing more feminine wisdom, feminine intuition, feminine human centric care into our leadership decisions. You know, if there were more women running the world, there wouldn’t be so many wars, they just wouldn’t, right? But it’s not, it’s not that the women don’t want the world that’s a feminine thing. It’s more about nurturing and looking after the system, the community. And I think we need more of that. You know, it’s necessarily from the past, it’s been very masculine, get the result at all costs, hire and fire, no, no care, no concern, no parenting sensibility. Just get the result. That’s a very masculine thing to do. And I also believe that men have access to feminine energy as well and when I’m working with males, I’m coaching them to access that as well within themselves, you know, I’m coaching them around becoming more conscious, you know, becoming more mindful, becoming more human centric, so and I’m doing it reasonably well apparently because my clients say that’s the changes that they experience and so I feel like I’m on mission man, you know, I’m a I’m a big old hippie at heart, you know, I spent many years with dreadlocks smoking weed in India and kumbaya kind of stuff, you know, and then found myself working through the corporate world and understanding that language as well and I feel like I’m a bridge between cultures and um you know and yeah, so my work is meaningful to me and that’s what people say that I do.

So it’s interesting to say that you know, you were you were a hippie and then you found yourself in the corporate world because yeah, how does that happen? Yeah, Yeah, I was many, many things, you know, I look back when people ask for my bio, I look back at it and how how did I fit that all into 50 years? I don’t know, but everything from tribal tattooist to fire dancer to motorcycle courier to kindergarten teacher in Taiwan volunteer in third world, Barefoot backpacking dreadlocked and squatting as a punk in London in abandoned buildings in London and all sorts of stuff I’ve done and then in my early and I spent most of my twenties and early 30s just traveling and then I became a father, fell in love and became a father and this was the turning point you were asking about. So when we had our first kid I was like, wow, crap. I’ve got to find a way to support these little people. You know, I need some sort of job career, you know, better make a go of this. I’ve been this anti establishment kind of bohemian bum cruising around the world all this time.

I better kind of get real and play the game. So I didn’t know what to do. I got a job with a travel company because an international travel company because I’ve been traveling for so many years and I did well I put on a suit and tie, which was very foreign. All my friends looked at me and said, what are you doing? And I said, I’m, I’m getting a job man, I’m gonna go to support these kids and try and buy a house, you know? And so I spent eight years with that company and climbed the corporate ladder. And the last Three years of that I was in a senior leadership role. I had 150 staff, my business that I bought into Was turning over $100 million Zeros at the end of the numbers. There was one thing that I loved about it, which was that the coaching, the leadership, the human behavior, all that stuff I loved and the facilitation, running workshops and everything else just was so far against my my values, but I convinced myself that it was fine, but it was all of the drive, the incessant nonstop pressure to grow net profit quarter on, quarter on a quarter.

Like if you’re not growing profit, you’re out thing, you know, hidden behind this facade of, oh, we’re a beautiful company, doing beautiful stuff and it’s like bullshit, you’re just trying to make more and more money, more and more money, more and more money, you know, which is not just this company I worked for, this is the system, right? But I was in there and I became very unhappy and I was working ridiculously hard, but because I was out of alignment with my values, I was very, very unhappy and I was drinking way too much booze and I had two little kids and and and a wife and I wasn’t really ever really there, present with them. I mean when I got home I’d change nappies and sing him to sleep, but I was so my head was so far not there because I was consumed with everything else that I was doing and consumed with my unhappiness and then I had my midlife Crisis slash awakening slash opportunity in my early 40s, I lost my job, lost my marriage, I lost my house, lost everything except the kids, kept the kids thankfully. Um and then had the opportunity, this was nine years ago, I had the opportunity to re identify and have a second crack at it.

Well, thank you for the story. Um when you were in the corporate world, um and you’re getting all those pressures, were you feeling the emotional conflict if you were I was doing a pretty good job of hiding it from myself, But I was also, you know, there was a lot of inauthenticity there, but I thought I could just, I thought I could just wing it and pretend that everything was great and that I was that I was all over it, but I wasn’t. Yeah, so yeah, I was feeling it, I was deeply unhappy, but underneath a thick facade and a blanket of shame as well, you know, just feeling, feeling a bit like a, like a fraud. Yeah, like that, so, man, yeah, I wasn’t happy, you know, I wasn’t happy, but I was pretending even to myself that I was, and since since my story and sharing my story, you know, it’s amazing how many people come up to me and go, oh my God, man, I feel the same way, you know, I’m out of alignment with my values.

I used to walk down the street when I was in this corporate role, I used to walk down the street in my local city, Kind of head down, hoping I wouldn’t bump into someone who one of my, one of my shops, I had 15 shops in my business hoping that I wouldn’t bump into someone who felt like they had been ripped off by us because we were trying to make too much money out of it. You know, my phone would ring and I’d be, and that was to me that that would trigger me to go ship, who’s trying to call me now, what do they want? You know, am I going to have to deal with another problem? You know, that was that was my life and the last nine years I flipped it, you know, because I’m living completely values aligned and I’ve got nothing to hide. I walked down the street with my head held high, you know, I don’t mind who I bump into because I know I haven’t done anything wrong to anyone or even even perceptually, you know, when my phone rings, I’m like, hey, how are you going? Right? It’s it’s a it’s a completely different way to live when you when you find a way to live values aligned and you feel that there’s a sense of meaning to what you do and you’ve got nothing to hide.

That’s liberation, right for me. Anyway, that’s liberation. What would you say to someone who let’s say maybe a close friend of of yours or someone you care about and they they were hippie, you know, um and they just found out that there going to be a dad or maybe um um um And they decided to go into the corporate world And they’re sort of like day one of that beginning, what would you say to that person? Mm hmm. What would I say to them? I would say look before you, before you just jump into this job. Any job if you’re up for it, if they were up for it, if they’d come to me and said, hey, jim, you know, I’d love some advice. That’s the first premise. I’m certainly not going to waste my time or yours giving advice to someone who hasn’t asked for an unsolicited advice doesn’t work. But if they come to me and said, hey, I’m looking for some advice. I’d say before you jump into a job just because it pays pretty well and you haven’t thought about it, have a think about what do you care about? What are some things you’re passionate about in general? In life in general.

Is there anything anything that you actually find yourself leaning into the conversation about? If you’re sitting at the dinner table and there’s a topic of conversation that comes up and you find yourself having something to say about that, what are those things? So we’re going to start looking at what you actually give a sh it about And then what are you naturally good at? What’s your natural talents and what you learned skill set through the years of your life, What have you learned and you know what do you enjoy doing, What are your things you’re naturally pretty good at Now? Let’s combine the two and now go start looking for work somewhere in that space. You know, if you can find, if you can find work where you actually care about what’s going on and you get to play to your strengths reasonably regularly, happy days. Yeah, so it would be maybe a little bit more careful thought on how they’re going to spend their time rather than just alright, I need to make some money immediately. Yeah. Yes, completely man, you know my my oldest boy is turning 18 next week, he’s in his final year of high school and he’s been saying to me over the last year or so dad, what should I do?

You know, should I just get the highest marks possible and get into the highest degree at university possible and just try and earn the most money as possible? And I said no you should not do that. No, you should definitely not do that. What do you care about? What are you passionate about now? I might be this might not be the right advice to give. I don’t know, it’s only the advice I know, so I don’t know if it’s the best advice or not, but I know people and clients of mine who are making a ton of money and they are miserable, miserable, like really some of them suicidal because they got sold on this dream that if you earn the most money as possible and you climb the ladder as much as possible and you have as many houses and as many cars and blah blah blah that you’ll be happy. And it’s just not true necessarily. The weird thing about that is I don’t remember anyone saying it, but it’s like a society, it’s like hypnosis societally, it’s like we all do it or at least most of us do it anyway.

No one explicitly says it. It’s a weird kind of it’s a weird thing that we do, don’t you think? Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. It’s just like this, this cultural unspoken paradigm that we’re all born into and indoctrinated with. And not many people question, You know, I also remember you mentioned your son, I also remember being in that position of having absolutely no idea sort of what to do in your sort of teens, your teenage and because everything’s open to you as a possibility at that point, I just have them say everything, but you could do, you could pick any profession, right. Um, and so trying to figure that out, it’s a tough thing at that age. Yeah. And he still doesn’t know exactly what role he wants to play in the movie industry, but he is a movie buff man, he’s a walking encyclopedia he’ll tell you every movie that’s coming out in the next few years and who directed them and who wrote them and who’s in them and the budget and how they did on opening.

And, and he doesn’t want to be in front of the camera at all. He’s beautifully and very happily introvert um, and, and quite cerebral, but he loves design and I said, mate, you know, just, it’ll just follow your passion. You know, if you, if you’re passionate about movies, go and go to go and do some sort of uni degree that’s got anything to do with media or movies or cinematography or anything, you know, and it doesn’t actually matter as long as you’re engaged, right, if you’re doing something and there’s a level of engagement, that’s the most important thing I believe anyway. And you’ll end up getting where you get, you know, I’ve, professionally now I’ve hit my sweet spot man. I’m feeding my kids and some doing what I love traveling the world when there’s no travel restrictions and living in a dream location. So I’m living my dream life, I didn’t find this until I was 42, You know, so maybe maybe people find this a lot sooner than me. I hope not everyone has to wait till they’re 42, but but it doesn’t actually matter what matters is what’s the quality of your life like today because we’re all going to die and we don’t know when, right, So that’s fair, right?

There’s no arguing that we’re all going to die and we don’t know when So do you want your life to be um really, really unpleasant right now because you’re, you’re hoping that one day you will create something that you’ve been told is going to bring you happiness. And what happens if you get hit by a bus? My brother died when he was 30 on his motorbike, gone now, luckily for him, he lived the way I’m talking about carpe diem as he lived like this. Lucky for him, A lot of people don’t, a lot of people live a miserable life thinking that they’re going to buy themselves some happiness down the track and then it’s gone. And so what was the point of that? I really believe that it should be more about the quality of your life today. Now, I’m not talking about that. You don’t have some short term investment for longer term gains, right? That’s intelligent. You know, I’m going to do this now for that, then I’m going to plant this seed now. So hopefully some fruit bears down the track. Yeah, for sure, let’s do that. And at the same time, how do I go to bed at the end of each day going? That was a pretty good day. You know, I think we can do both, interested to know what you’re, what your answer will be to this one and that is what your goals.

I don’t know what the goals are written down, Yeah, written down and vision board, daily, daily affirmations daily, you know, I do all the, all the stuff to give me the best chance of manifesting stuff which includes taking functional action, a lot of action. So my goals this year, 2022, I’ve set a big goal for myself, but I reckon I can do it, I want to sell 100,000 copies of the book that I’ve just had published. That’s the main goal this year. Can you tell me about the book? So the book is called The Art of conscious communication for thoughtful men. It was only released in november and already I’m getting some really lovely feedback from it, not just men, lots of women are reading it and saying great book, thank you. I’m glad I read it now. I’m going to give it to my husband or son or brother. Um yeah, look, the premise of the book, I initially I just started writing a book about communication and conscious communication broadly. And then I engaged a book writing mentor and she suggested to me you need to pick an audience if it’s too broad, no one will pick it up.

It needs to be for someone. She said, I think she read the start of the manuscript and she said, look, I think men could really do with this book right now. So then I started writing it for men, but conscious communication, communication, I’m super passionate about, I think we take for granted how vital how integral communication is to everything that we do, you know, not only, I mean no idea can be manifest into reality without communication, you know Einstein, Einstein could have had all of these amazing understandings that he had, but without the ability to communicate them, they wouldn’t have meant anything to anybody else, you know? So it’s this, it’s communication is the bridge between isolation and connection and that’s a really important bridge and a lot of people in Lockdown have been experiencing firsthand the effects of isolation, you know, we’re a communal species, even for introverts who love their time alone, we still need each other alright, we need each other and without communication we don’t have that and solving the biggest world problems, you know, pandemics, you know, global warming inequality, these big world problems without the ability to communicate and harness the power of diversity.

You’ve seen the ted talk, this is what I talk about in there, we’re not going to solve those problems, you know? So communication is massively important and at the moment we’re watching it deteriorate, not improved, get worse. You know, these people who are identifying with a politic or an ideology and are just shouting at each other and that is, you know, you say I’m a chill dude that frustrates me man, I’m looking at humans going, oh my God, humans come on, what are you doing seriously? On the one hand we are such an incredible species and on the other we are so stupid Anyway, breathe compassion love. Um but I’m watching people shouting at each other and trying to cancel each other, you know, which is just not evolving the situation at all. So it’s only through improving our communication, our discourse that we can solve these bigger problems. That’s why I think it’s so important thomas that that you’re doing what you do, that other podcasters are doing what they do, which is literally just having conversations about stuff that matters.

I think it’s really, really important the work that you do. Um yes, so I’m passionate about communication and passionate about is becoming more conscious, you know, so being more conscious is just quite simply being more aware and being more aware in any form of communication is rather than being trapped in your ego, your sense of identity and defending your point of view. That you can create the ability and then practice the ability, teach yourself how to elevate beyond your sense of identity and have a be more conscious of the bigger picture of the communication, you know, leaning in, seeking to understand when you’re listening rather than queuing up to get your point of view in or to rebut or to agree or to like rather than curing up to just whoa, hang on a sec, nothing to defend. Let me really try and seek to understand where this person is coming from and what are they wanting to communicate? Maybe it is something as literal as directions. Maybe thomas is saying to me, jim, when you get down here to my town in south of England, take the first left and then the second right, maybe it’s just literal directions.

You’re trying to communicate with me or when my partner is sitting with her head on my shoulder crying, what’s the communication there? It’s not literal, that’s more energetic. So seeking to understand right and serving serving the purpose of the communication rather than the individuals involved. Anyway, I’m going on a little bit, but you got me onto a topic I’m passionate about, that’s great and I do think for anyone watching they should check out the ted talk because I think it’s great and just were you happy with it when you watch your back? Yeah, Yeah man. Yeah, I guess so. Like, you know, you you were were very self critical and and um you know, you question yourself, that’s what us humans do and you go, is that worth watching? And I mean I believe in the message in there, but you know, we compare ourselves to others. So you notice yourself going well that ted talk over there was way more inspirational that Ted talk there had way more had data or you know, you notice yourself doing that and then you go, hey jim, you shouldn’t be more like anybody else man, you should just be you and you know, I shot that in the middle of lockdown so we couldn’t have an audience.

You probably noticed the studio that I was working with was Derry Londonderry in Northern Ireland and I shot it here in Australia because I couldn’t fly over there. So I hired a theater and a film crew and I made the ted sign up myself man, I went and paid a sign writer to make the proper ted sign and everything. I thought I might only get one shot at a ted talk. So I wanted to do the brand proud and do it properly. So I’m really happy with the production of it. Um you know, I think I delivered it pretty well. I don’t know, I don’t know, 56,000 people have watched it, that’s better than 10. Yeah, well I do think um if you’re trying to do something and you’re trying to make yourself proud at the same time, I think that’s the best way to go about it because it is very, it’s not a good feeling when you look back at something and you think I regret not working like a little bit harder on that if you’ve done everything you can, I think that’s I think that’s a good feeling well done.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Yeah, you’re right. I did everything I could, I did everything I could have watched some other ted X talks come out through Covid and their people, you know in their in their study at home with their iphone set up and perhaps maybe a green screen behind them and fair play to them. Good on you for for getting your message out there. But I looked at that and when if I did that I wouldn’t be happy with it, I’d be like I should have put more effort into it. So I’m happy with what I did. Yeah. Thank you. Good. If people want to connect with you by the book or maybe maybe even traveled to Delhi, who knows? Where should they go? Jim fuller dot com. Um That’s you can you can find everything there, the book, my courses, you can reach out and contact me. I’m pretty accessible. Um If you don’t want to go to the website insta facebook, I don’t spend much time on facebook but my team do marketing on there for me linkedin. I’m probably a little bit more present on linkedin and it’s all just gem fuller.

You find me pretty easily for people watching. Please review the links and Jim Fuller. Thank you for your contribution in general and thanks for being a great guest. Thank you so much for having me on Thomas. I really appreciate it.