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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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.

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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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Emotional Stupidity & How To Avoid It – EU11

November 2, 2017

Have you ever found yourself weeping uncontrollably into a vat of Ben & Jerry’s for no apparent reason?  Have people told you your level of agreeableness is less than that of a rabid baboon? Do you struggle to connect with others to form healthy, win-win relationships?  If so, you may be suffering from a hard case of emotional stupidity, AKA a lack of emotional intelligence.

In this episode, we’re greeted by special guest and father Cody Blowers to discuss the critical topic of emotional intelligence.  As a current doctorate student with over 20 years of experience working and teaching in the medical field, Cody shares his insights on emotional intelligence and how we can develop it within ourselves to lead more successful and self-aware lives.  From empathy to emotional outlets to communication and motivation, no stones go left unturned in this special guest episode of the Elevated U podcast!

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Why So Serious? – EU10

October 24, 2017

In this double-digit installment of the Elevated U Podcast, Bryan and Michael steal a quote from their favorite Batman movie and riff on the topic of seriousness.  We ponder the causes and effects of seriousness, how it impacts those around us, and how fun can serve as an important counter-weight for a balanced life.

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Our Elevated U Journey & The Case For Stagnation – EU9

October 17, 2017

The best and most memorable adventures are the ones that happen.  In this week’s installment, we discuss our roots, how Elevated U came to be, and what we’ve learned in the process.  We show some love to all of our listeners, you guys rock!  Then Bryan and Michael argue the case for stagnation; why personal growth can actually be harmful.  We share personal stories, examine the symptoms of misdirected growth, and offer a few suggestions for how to make your life meaningful no matter how growth-oriented you are.  This episode is great for those that are interested in counter-arguments, abstract ideas, and grown men talking into a box.

Have an elevated week!

#ElevatedU

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10 Psychological Traps That Stifle Awesomeness – EU8

October 11, 2017

In this week's episode, Bryan and Michael riff and rant on 10 psychological traps that hinder people from achieving optimal states of awesomeness:

1) Discipline

2) Excuses

3) Not listening to others

4) Lack of exercise

5) Judging others

6) Perfectionism

7) Selfishness

8) PC culture

9) Entitlement

10) Lack of appreciation for the mundane

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The Pursuit Of Happiness – EU7

October 3, 2017

“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” – Mahatma Gandhi

This week’s episode features special guest and close friend Robert as we plunge face-first into the topic of happiness.  We share personal views on the pursuit of happiness, challenge the notion of happiness as an end goal, and explore ways to attain sustained fulfillment throughout life.  This episode was a blast to record and we hope you enjoy the variety of perspectives and honest dialogue shared 😊.

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Just Do It! Productivity Pointers To Power-Up Your Life – EU6

September 26, 2017

It’s the first week of fall, and in this episode Michael and Bryan drop some wisdom on how to stay productive even after that 7th slice of pumpkin pie.  We share personal productivity strategies, common productivity pitfalls and what to do when you fall off the horse.  We talk about momentum, motivation, time management, sacrifice, short-term vs. long-term strategies, and how to stay sane all the while getting things done.  So before you settle into that Autumn-based food coma, give us a listen, make your bed (you’ll see why), and set yourself up for amazing success down the road!

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How To Be An Effective Leader – EU5

September 19, 2017

What does it take to be an effective leader?  How do effective leaders champion their cause?  In this week’s installment of the Elevated U Podcast, Bryan and Michael take a stab at the topic of leadership.  We dissect what leadership means to us, examine various leadership styles and methodologies, share our top 3 attributes for effective/ineffective leaders, and discuss how to incorporate leadership into your life to elevate yourself and those around you to succeed!

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How To Cultivate Strength To Pierce Through Adversity – EU4

September 12, 2017

We admire those people who are able to push through seemingly insurmountable obstacles to achieve great heights.  The Ghandis, MLKs, Steve Jobs of the world.  In this week's episode, Bryan and Michael delve into the concept of strength, how to find and build your personal strengths, how weakness factors into strength, and how to develop an overarching framework of strength to survive and thrive during the toughest times of your life.  We share personal anecdotes, historic examples (Bryan has one towards the end you won't want to miss), practical tips and a healthy dose of bro-love.

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Is The Road To Bliss Paved With Regret? – EU3

September 5, 2017

In this week's episode, Bryan and Michael get deep on the topic of regret, what initiates it, how it's affected their lives, and how regret can be used as a powerful tool for altering behavior, inviting growth, and inspiring integrous and value-based living!

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An Optimist, A Pessimist & A Realist Walk Into A Bar… – EU2

August 29, 2017

In today's episode, we break away from optimism's stereotypical golden throne atop the cultural paradigm and dive into how pessimism and realism can also be useful perceptive tools for living a good life.  We chat about what it's like to be a realist, how to tell which of the three you are, and how fluctuating between all of them can be useful when navigating this beautiful, tragic and ordinary existence.

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Episode 1: Thinking For Yourself

August 22, 2017

In this episode, we talk about the concept of "thinking for yourself," the dangers of group think, how to take responsibility for your life, and how to get in touch with your core of awesomness to make decisions to be the best version of you!

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