New Horizons, Toxic Social Media, Goal Attainment, & The Virtue Of Trying – EU 31

May 3, 2018

Do not be afraid of what you can or can't control. Do not let the uncertainty of an outcome stop you from trying. Go out into the world, put forth the best of your effort, live fully, and what is meant to happen will manifest in the most splendid and unexpected ways...

In this week's episode, Robert McQuarrie – friend of 20+ years, businessman, college graduate, investor, and certified hustler – joins us to discuss a wealth of practical and life-enhancing topics.

We discuss my upcoming (now complete) move away from my hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico and how to enter the realm of chaos and newness with strength, openness, and determination. The pros and cons of entering a brand new environment and lifestyle with a set plan. The toxicity of social media when used for purposes of overconsumption, passive comparison, sensationalized news, fear of missing out (FOMO), and escapism from day-to-day life and responsibility. Benefits of social media when used in a contributive and value-adding manner. We share our perspectives on victimhood, taking responsibility, and the hesitation to push through barriers of comfort even if the outcome is desirable in the medium-to-long run. Personal development as a pseudo-tool to outrun the potential of evil within oneself and the world rather than incorporating those elements of reality into one's perspective and actions.

Robert shines in his description and embodiment of drive, strategic execution, goal attainment, perseverance, and grit. Achieving outcomes through SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely) goal-setting. Scheduling and rewarding oneself for sticking to a plan. The importance of sticking to a plan even when the going gets tough and things seem uncertain. How to enjoy the process of consistently trying different things, seeing how you respond, and tweaking your approach to be more and more efficient. Having faith that you can achieve your goals and enjoy the process. You'll never know what you're capable of without trying. Every person is destined for good, you just have to work and pursue it.

Huge shout out to Robert for taking the time to sit down and have an honest, fun, and light-hearted conversation about interesting topics. I'm excited about the journey ahead for both you and myself; I have confidence we will both accomplish great things and be the good men and people we strive to be. Thank you for being an exceptional friend through thick and thin.

Elevated Idea Of The Day: 

Do not be afraid of what you can or can't control. Every person is capable of good, you just have to work towards the things you want. Regardless of if you fail or succeed, you'll be happy you tried :) .

New website launching May 15, 2018. Get ready!!

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A Candid Conversation On Personal Growth – EU 30

April 25, 2018

In this episode, Bryan and Michael sit down to discuss personal growth, next steps in life, and ways to work towards the peak of self-elevation. We talk about entitlement and how the world and others don't owe us anything. Identity, ego, and how shifting from craving external validation to cultivating internal confidence builds a grounded sense of value-based living. Personal authenticity and transparency. Life changes, transitions and why/how we make those decisions. Stepping outside of our comfort zones. Staying stagnant even when growth is our primary goal. Why faith matters. Cutbacks on the road to self-actualization. The necessity of including others in our journeys of personal growth. Elevating others through our words and actions. The idea that our life is not our own; our actions matter exponentially more than we often think because of the direct and indirect impact they have on others. Taking care of ourselves. Treating others the way we wish to be treated. Cultural isolation and an unwillingness to make oneself vulnerable. The necessity of vulnerability for creating deeper relationships and enhancing perspective. Listening to others rather than always trying to be heard or right. Courage to express personal truths and entertain/consider differing perspectives. Doing something unusual tomorrow and personalized advice.

I'd like to give a big thanks to Bryan for such an open and engaging conversation. You can follow Bryan on Snapchat (bsich) and Instagram (@bsich1103) for motivational stories and posts. Follow me (Michael) on Twitter (@michaelmblowers), Snapchat (m.be3zy), and Instagram (@mmblowers) for thoughtful posts.

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How To Find And Live Your Truth – EU 29

April 10, 2018

In this week's delayed episode (sorry about that), we talk the necessity of truth and how to find it. I share a history lesson about a man who risked his life for truth, Martin Luther with his 95 Thesis, how expressing truth can heal psychological and spiritual wounds, ways in which truth gives us certainty of action and progresses humanity, the hierarchical order of truth, permanent vs. subjective truths, the fallibility of truth, how to find and live your truth, and ways to fight un-truth. More positivity and new content coming soon!

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Is Culture The Path To Understanding? – EU 28

March 13, 2018

Travel fanatic and student Ciera Rocco joins us this episode to discuss the five elements of culture, cultural blind spots, whether or not we can escape culture, if some cultures are better than others, integrating into new societies, hierarchies, chaos, and lessons learned traveling the world!

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The Nature Of Evil – EU 27

March 3, 2018

“If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?” ― Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

The nature of evil is intrinsically linked to the nature of humanity. Indeed, we have proven ourselves capable of great goods, fantastic feats, and momentous achievements. But good cannot exist without its opposite, and to make the claim that humans are good must include the claim that humans possess evil, malice, vice.

If we assume that evil exists within each and every person, it seems worthwhile to make a legitimate attempt to understand it. Otherwise, we risk putting the atrocities of history carried out by man into a fictional box that certainly could not or would not happen again or to us.

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Career Development & Alignment: First Job To Dream Job – EU 26

February 22, 2018

If you, like most people, did not have the good fortune of having a fat sack of money fall from the sky and into your lap, you’ve probably had to work for the things you want.

Work is an integral part of life. Not only does it allow us to prosper economically, but it cultivates important skills, habits, and tangible benefits to others.

Learning to maximize career development and alignment increases the chances of higher earnings, talent maturation, and work-related fulfillment.

Joel Ruiz, a ServiceNow System Administrator, joins us on today’s episode to discuss the non-linear progression of work, transitioning from entry-level jobs to a career, and tips to consider when thinking about one’s own career development arc.

Enjoy!

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The Devil’s Advocate Pt. 2: Apathy – EU 25

February 14, 2018

"I have a very strong feeling that the opposite of love is not hate – it’s apathy. It’s not giving a damn." - Leo Buscaglia

There are many obstacles on the way to being your best self. Many of these obstacles are fairly apparent. Getting fired from your job. Having a relationship dissolve. Coming down with an illness. Making a poor business decision.

But what about obstacles that are more devious and subtle? What about a slow creep of decay that permeates every area of life until progress devolves into a stagnant puddle of...nothing? And worse, what if you can't muster the energy or fortitude to care at all?

This week's special guest episode focuses on apathy, the antithesis of empathy.

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The Art Of Being Yourself: Individualism & Self-Actualization – EU 24

February 9, 2018

To "be yourself" in this world is no easy feat. We face constant social, cultural and economic pressures to conform to the status quo. In the west, we have freedom of speech, thought and expression, but who's in the driver's seat for capitalizing on those privileges? And why does this even matter?

In this episode, we explore what it means to "be ourselves." We look at individualism as a prevalent societal philosophy and postulate on the reasons for its contemporary popularity. Self-actualization is arguably the goal of individualism and personal development and we spend some time addressing the benefits of striving towards this ethereal yet principal goal. Lastly, we discuss the art of being yourself and practical ways to maximize your potential, fulfillment, and contribution to fellow kin.

Have an elevated week!

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How To Be A Good Friend (And Not Destroy Friendships!) – EU 23

February 1, 2018

There is no magic formula for how to be a good friend. No instruction manual with 10 simple steps. Just lots of time, effort, loyalty, trust, vulnerability, and attempts at mutual understanding.

In today’s episode featuring special guests Bryan and Rocco, we unpack what it means to be a good friend, how to build successful friendships, coping with loss, actions that damage friendships, and one foolproof method for supporting friends through their toughest moments.

"One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood." – Seneca

Visit elevated-u.com for the full episode transcript!

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The Devil’s Advocate: Vice – EU 22

January 25, 2018

“As far as I’m concerned, I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue” – Albert Einstein

In each of us exists light and dark, good and bad, angel and devil, virtue and vice. The play of duality that constitutes morality and ethics is an interesting one. It begs the question: on which side of the coin do we fall?

This episode is all about vice. We delve into the metaphysical and practical elements of vice, why it exists, the principals that enable it, and how to combat it in order to live better lives.

Visit elevated-u.com for the full episode write-up!

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Stumbling Into The New Year – EU 21 Minisode

January 4, 2018

The champagne’s gone, confetti is in the garbage, and 2018 is officially in full swing.

This minisode features a short conversation with Michael as he discusses sobriety, questions of vocation, and an evolving direction with the podcast. If you have any topics you’d like discussed on the podcast, send an email to michael@elevated-u.com and we’ll address them in a full episode!

We wish you an amazing 2018 and the best of luck and success as you continue on your journey of life. Practice gratitude, remind yourself of the positives in your life, listen to your gut, be courageous, and make this year one for the record books.

Have a great year folks 😊.

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Visit our website at elevated-u.com for the full episode library!

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3 Keys To An Elevated Existence: Flexibility, Mistakes & Pivots – EU 19

December 27, 2017

This episode is packed full of so many concepts, we were nervous to do the write-up.  Join us for a candid conversation between Michael, Bryan, and our exceptional guest Chris Dinelli as we unpack flexibility as a concept, mistakes, learning through pain, aggressive course-correction, pivots vs. 180s, discipline, spending time alone, and more!

Key Points:

Chris is a Mechanical Engineering student and great friend of ours that spent years working jobs he was dispassionate about and not living up to his potential. He made the CHOICE to take control of his life and carve out a lane of success, discipline, and smart choices. This was not easy, but the things worth going after never are.

Flexibility is defined as being able to see something that is difficult in your life and possessing the ability to work around it, to not get dragged down in negativity or victimhood.  It keeps the end goal in sight and is fluid; it takes advantage of opportunities as they present themselves.

Life, success, and achievement cannot always be forced. Flexibility and patience allow opportunities to come to YOU as long as you put yourself in positions to capitalize on them.

Success, according to Chris, is a daily grind of putting yourself in positions to win.

Flexibility is not always beneficial. When you are too flexible in certain areas of life – relationships, career, health, etc. – you may inadvertently compromise on other priorities.

Situations that appear “good” or “bad” in the moment may turn out to be otherwise in the long-run. Keep the big picture in mind.

Lack of humility prevents objective self-assessment. It is important to be critical of oneself, to honestly assess your life and make adjustments based on your goals. Think of your childhood self and whether or not he/she would be proud of the person you’ve become.

We tend to “know” when we are making mistakes, when we’re making the wrong decisions. The challenge is accepting reality and making the choice to change. Many people never change. We cannot control anyone other than ourselves.

Mistakes are inevitable. It signifies our humanity. So long as we can learn from mistakes, take time to ourselves to heal when necessary, and reemerge into the world stronger and more grounded, we can take trauma and turn it into invaluable lessons.

Internalize hurt. Resist self-medication unless absolutely necessary. Spending time alone, becoming your own friend, and reflecting on where you messed up can expedite the healing process. Some practical tips are to remove social media and surround yourself with friends and family that can support you when you’re low.

How to start from the bottom:

  • Change perspective
  • Accept reality
  • Don’t hold yourself to the standards of others

It is never too late to make positive changes. Like the adage “age is just a number,” your perception imposes limits on your ability to work towards goals that matter.

Pivoting vs. 180:

  • Take the path of least resistance
  • Pivoting is defined as “to turn from.” Repentance follows this definition.
  • We are ALWAYS pivoting as we move through life. Pivots are ideal when the path is defined and favorable. 180s are ideal when the path is wrong or fails to serve you anymore. Complacency is a death-sentence.

Spend time alone. We are robbed of this at this point in history with the prevalence of technology, smart phones, and social media. It teaches you what you want and don’t want and allows you to become your own friend.

Abstain from things you love. Discipline is CRITICAL on the road to success, whatever that looks like for you (if you don’t know what that looks like, consider spending time alone 😊 ).

Practice selflessness and humility. Understand the universe is not out to get you, and your vibe influences your thoughts, words and actions.

Michael-Bryan-Chris elevated u 19

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Huge shoutout to our special guest Chris Dinelli for dropping knowledge, being vulnerable, and being a great friend.

Intro/Outro beat by @shadelockwood on Instagram and Soundcloud

Support the podcast by leaving us a review on iTunes!

Like our Facebook page for updates on the latest episodes and news!

Visit our website at elevated-u.com for the full episode library!

Email michael@elevated-u.com with questions, feedback, or business inquiries.

#stayelevated

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Happy Holidays & A Fireside Chat – EU 18

December 21, 2017

Happy Holidays! With Hanukkah wrapping up and Christmas right around the corner, we take a moment to wish you a very happy holiday season.  Stay safe, spend time with friends and family, turn off technology, and enjoy the final weeks of 2017 as we tie this year off with a big red bow and move into 2018.

Huge shout-out to all of our Elevated listeners inside the U.S. (especially our friends in New Mexico) as well as all of our international listeners in the Philippines, Guam, the UK, New Zealand and more!

This episode features a fireside chat with host Michael. He gets personal and shares details about his life, upbringing, schooling, skirmishes with depression, fascination with personal growth, partying, friendships, existential crises, and so on. 

No matter where we come from, what our beliefs are, what our life stories are, we are all sharing this experience of life right here, right now.  We’re in this together.  Take a moment to recognize the diversity of people.  Seek to understand rather than condemn.  Strive for community, for common goals, for unity that elevates humankind and the world we share.

We hope you enjoy 😊.

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Intro/Outro beat by @shadelockwood on Instagram and Soundcloud

Support the podcast by leaving us a review on iTunes!

Like our Facebook page for updates on the latest episodes and news!

Visit our website at elevated-u.com for the full episode library!

Email michael@elevated-u.com with questions, feedback, or business inquiries.

#everelevated

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How To Start – EU 17

December 12, 2017

Envision yourself with everything you presently want. The shredded physique. The perfect significant other. The window seat on an airline transporting you to a distant land of your choosing. The corner office overlooking the city skyline. The time to do the things you love.

Now work backwards. What would it take to achieve these things? The shredded physique would probably take a few years of strict dieting and strenuous training. The perfect significant other would require meeting and dating enough less-than-perfect others. The window seat would take money, planning, and free time. The corner office would demand countless work hours and political maneuverings. The time to do the things you love would insist all your other responsibilities are handled.

This can be painfully daunting.

Motivation vanishes upon seeing the amount of time, effort, and knowledge required to achieve our dreams. But if those dreams are worth pursuing, we’ll need to start somewhere which, ironically, can truly be the toughest part. This week’s solo episode focuses on the beginning of any journey to greatness: the starting point.

Key Points:

Many of us aspire to live our dreams, to do things that matter, to “check off” items on the bucket list. When confronted with the reality of what it takes to live those dreams, however, we may not choose to try at all.

If you are set on living a dream or doing something important, you’ll need to start somewhere. Be SPECIFIC with what exactly you’re trying to do. Learning a new language? Which one? Beginning a new fitness regimen? For what goal? Specificity helps solidify the starting point and direct action to make real progress.

Find your WHY. Why do you want to start this new endeavor? What intention is driving you? What values are you satisfying by beginning the journey? Without a solid WHY, you may find yourself acting out of peer pressure, perceived incompleteness or neediness rather than intentional and purposeful motivation.

Create a PLAN. What do you need to get started? Perform research. Read books. Watch videos. Talk to people. Then acquire the things you need to begin taking action.

Do the thing! Take action. You’ve been preparing for this moment, it’s time to look fear in the face and say “fuck you.”

Set SMART goals. Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely.

Give yourself a huge pat on the back after you take action. So many people TALK a big game about what they’re going to do. You’ve actually DONE it.

If it’s a one-time thing, move on to the next. If you plan on getting better, you’ll need objective feedback from yourself and others, consistency, and dedication.

Don’t be afraid to look like a fool or to look surprisingly awesome. Leave ego at the door. Learn tons about yourself in the process. You’ll learn what you like, dislike, and what may or may not be worth incorporating as a lasting component in your life. You might even beat FOMO.

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Intro/Outro beat by @shadelockwood on Instagram and Soundcloud

Support the podcast by leaving us a review on iTunes!

Like our Facebook page for updates on the latest episodes and news.

Email us at michael@elevated-u.com with questions, feedback, or business inquiries.

Have an #elevated week!

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Reframe Your Mind, Conquer Adversity – EU 16

December 7, 2017

“We forget: In life, it doesn’t matter what happens to you or where you came from. It matters what you do with what happens and what you’ve been given.” ― Ryan Holiday

Jarrod Greth was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer, at age three.  Now cancer-free and working towards a law degree, Jarrod weighs in on life as a cancer survivor, amputee, and how he’s been able to reframe adversity to strive for the best version of himself.

Key Points:

Adversity is a mindset.  This does not mean life doesn’t deal you bad hands.  It does.  But you choose how to play the hands you’re dealt.  Adversity is not an excuse to not achieve or not to try.

Adversity forms who we are.  Instead of lamenting all the things we aren’t or what we can’t do, we should instead ask ourselves “What can I do? What am I capable of?”

Adversity in and of itself does not hold us back.  Our expectations, effort, and egos do.

There are many avenues to succeed.  Learn who you are, what you’re capable of, and what you value to capitalize on unique strengths.

There are two primary ways of dealing with adversity: overcome it or find a new path.

People choose to let adversity stop them from self-actualizing for many reasons including the western obsession with success, viewing life linearly, our culture of victim-hood and the race to see who is the most disparaged/underprivileged, and pursuing happiness as an end-goal.

Values conquer adversity.  Hard work, duty, responsibility, honesty, gratitude, integrity, etc.

Failure is “missing the mark.”  Many people fail because they’ve set unrealistic or unattainable goals.  Others fail because their goals are too easy.  Choose smart goals and know when to quit.

Become a realist.  Learn who you are, what success looks like to you, and how your expectations of yourself and others impacts your reality.  What makes you happy?  Discover the values that guide your thoughts and behavior.

Don’t be afraid to think for yourself and forge your own path, but listen to the feedback of others to fill any blind spots you may have.

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Special thanks to Jarrod Greth for being this week’s guest!

Intro/Outro beat produced by Shade Lockwood @shadelockwood on Instagram and Soundcloud.

Love the podcast? Leave us a review on iTunes! Follow us on Facebook for new episodes and #elevated updates.  Visit our site elevated-u.com for the full episode library.  Have an elevated week!

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Feeling Insecure? A Cure For The Plague Of Insecurity – EU15

November 29, 2017

“It is always the secure who are humble.” – Gilbert Keith Chesterton

You wake up, brush your teeth, and gaze into the mirror hoping to see the reflecting visage of a Brad Pitt or Emma Watson. Nope, just you again, frazzled hair and all. In that moment, it’s easy to fall into despair. 

“Why am I not a beautiful celebrity worth millions?” you might think.  Why aren’t my finances respectable? Why am I so socially awkward? Why did THAT incident have to happen to me? Regardless of the question, there’s a good chance you, like most others, suffer the lifelong condition of feeling insecure. Left untreated, it can morph into a debilitating plague, infecting all areas of life.

This week’s episode inspects insecurity with the hope of suppressing it to a reasonable degree.  Bryan and Michael discuss common symptoms of insecurity, where it stems from, human narcissism and philosophy, personal anecdotes, the necessity of intrinsic value and external results, solutions such as the “fuck other people” mindset, service to others, therapy, self-awesomeness and more. 

There’s a saying that goes “the more personal the problem, the more universal it is.” You’re not alone if you battle with insecurity. If anything, it means you’re a fully functional human 😊.

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Turkey Day & Travel Escapades – EU14

November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving! This week, we’re joined by the lovely and talented Ms. Alex to talk turkey day and travel escapades.  We practice gratitude by reflecting on the things we’re thankful for and share stories acquired from traveling the world. 

This episode follows the arc of adventure.  We discuss first impressions stepping off the plane, the “honeymoon phase” of being in a new place, total immersion, the return home, lessons and benefits of travel, and practical ways to make travel a part of your life.  We cover how to stay safe in a new environment, the two-way process of culture exchange, history, resourcefulness, and making it happen. 

Travel is personally empowering and perspective enhancing.  It doesn’t matter if it’s the town 10 miles away or a continent only accessible by 13-hour flight.  Exploring new lands and new people teaches you about the world, destroys bias and preconception, and develops one’s understanding of their home, culture, and place in the world.  We hope you enjoy!!

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Unraveling The Elements Of Exceptional Relationships – EU13

November 15, 2017

Relationships are awesome, they allow you to share the essence of your soul with another individual willing and capable of receiving it.  Once this bond is solidified by an unbreakable love, you are both carried away to nirvana to spend the rest of your days totally getting each other and living happily ever after.  Except not, relationships are tough!

In this content-rich episode, Bryan and Michael examine the components that constitute successful relationships.  We talk interdependence, polarity, trust building, boundaries, self-worth, red flags, The 5 Love Languages, sacrifice and more as we attempt to pick apart what separates healthy, long-term relationships from toxic, self-destructive ones.  This episode provides ample perspective to help you assess and maximize the relationships in your life, whether you’re dating, in a committed relationship, or happily single.

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A Millennial’s Guide To Surviving The Quarter-Life Crisis – EU12

November 8, 2017

“Just because we’re on different paths doesn’t mean I’m lost.”

As the fall season continues to descend upon us, Bryan and Michael share their plans to partake in “Sober November” and get personal on the topic of quarter-life crisis.  The quarter-life crisis is typically characterized by the solidification of identity and one’s standing in the world as they transition from young-adulthood to the next phase of life.  We share personal struggles with this phenomenon, examine some of the reasons why this happens particularly for the Millennial generation, and discuss a plethora of ways to cope with this period of existential uneasiness and confusion.  Whether you’re in the midst of your quarter-life crisis or have already passed this uncomfortable phase, this episode should provide plenty of vulnerability and insight with which to sink your auditory teeth.

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