Being alone together! That's what pocket screens have done to our society. We can be together, have the world at our fingertips and also shut it out at the same time. For this Superhero Friday, this episode is best listened to blasting from a boombox held high above your head as you take a walk down a residential street. Bring the town together! Or, ya know, headphones and a dark room will do too.
From hurricanes to forest fires, the U S of A is being ravaged by Mother Nature. She can bring beautiful gifts, like introverts, in one moment, and then the next she's reminding you why They call her Mama. Returning in this Superhero Friday installment are The Nightfox and Shear Terror, where we talk about so so much. Not just natural disasters, but also introverts (it won't surprise you that I, your fearless blog post author, match about 95% of the facts about introverts), and the Pumpkin Spice Latte, and about aggressive drivers.
The northern border of the USA has been rather smokey for several months now, but in the last week more fires in the Pacific Northwest began popping up and contributing to the seemingly endless haze. Here in Minnesota we get a small taste of that fire, appearing like fog across open plains and highways, but I know that it's nothing in comparison to the real thing. Oregon looks pock-marked right now with the various fires wrapping the state, and over 1 million acres of Montana burned this fire season.
Interesting fact, Smokey the Bear and his infamous slogan first made an appearance in pop culture back in 1944. It was during this WWII era when paying attention to fire was most important because all of the able-bodied men who typically attended to such forces of nature were over seas serving in the armed forces. The black bear standing on his hind legs and wearing his signature jeans and a campaign hat became an American marketing staple.
All over Minnesota we have Smokey standing next to a Fire Danger sign (with Low, Medium or High warnings). In my life, I cannot recall there ever being a High warning, but I've seen a few Medium warnings. Barring instances, asThe Nightfox mentions, where lightning starts a fire, humans are the leading cause of forest fires (some national reports say about 84 percent are caused by humans, others say as low as 60).
It's just another reminder to be constantly vigilant! Pay attention to what you're doing and don't be negligent! The same goes for driving, eh?
Thank God it's Friday! The Nightfox is back from his trip to Las Vegas and while he waits to hear updates on his niece, he joined Brian behind the mic for this week's Superhero Friday installment. If you've been looking for a Monday episode recently, you're not alone. Due to busy summer schedules and real life stuff, Monday episodes have been on a little hiatus.
Hurricane Harvey left billions of dollars in damages in his enormous wake. There are relief efforts going on all across the nation and there are many, many ways for you to contribute. On Monday (August 28), JJ Watt (DE for the Houston Texans) started a relief fund to help the community he serves and plays for. In just four days, his foundation has raised nearly $10 million from nearly 90k donors. Watt and his teammates are back in Houston now delivering much needed supplies to the most devastated areas of their community and it's very clear that when you contribute to this fund, the money is going directly to relief efforts.
To learn more and contribute, or share if you are unable to contribute financially, please visit JJ Watt's YouCaring website.
What have you been watching lately? Even though the Nightfox doesn't have time for such frivolous things as binge-watching Netflix, Brian and I have been making our way through Defenders. As I've gotten more into reading comics over the last two years, I wholly believe that the more I know about the comics world, the less I enjoy any adaptation of those characters. I've been immersed in the Rebirth world for a year now, getting to know characters all across the spectrum, and their small screen (or big screen) counterparts are definitely lacking something.
All that to say, I also really enjoyed Defenders. There was a lot of build up, but the reluctant team who joins together over a common enemy is one of my favorite types of stories. Aside from Danny Rand perhaps (Iron Fist), the other three are very much the "I work alone" types. The dynamic between them all shifts constantly and the enemy's plans, though fairly grandiose and reminiscent of Arrow Season 3 in some ways posed a legit threat. Casting was well done, CGI was a little obvious, but on the whole there were great fight sequences with very little gratuitous violence.
While The Nightfox tends to a family emergency in the city that never sleeps, Captain Influence joins The Real Brian for this installment of The Real Brian Show! That means... Happy Superhero Friday! Lots happened in the world this week, including the eclipse which stretched across the United States and Netflix's release of Marvel's Defenders. Also on the agenda are some tidbits about healthy eating, the data backup software Crashplan, and talking about how annoying it is when gaming feels like work.
Since Brian's coffee roaster died, I received a nice big bag of coffee beans from a local Colorado roaster called Beagle, which I must say is quite fantastic. The building in which the company I work for rents space is also home to a coffee roaster, here in Minnesota, and that process is a quite deceiving. Based on the end result, you'd expect that the whole roasting process would release luscious, intoxicatingly seductive scents. But it doesn't. I've gotten used to it now, but it kind of smells like burning wet hay.
We're glad you're joining us on this glorious Superhero Friday! As the historical lunar eclipse approaches, we won't squander the opportunity to talk about it. Have you heard that it's supposed to be the most photographed, most Tweeted, most Facebooked event in history? I suppose it's not all that surprising, given Moore's Law, and yet there is no greater time for such an event to take place. As people flood to the 70 mile strip of land that stretches from Oregon to South Carolina to witness the Great American Eclipse, the first one to touch the U.S. since 1979, those of us who do not fall right within its path are eager and hungry for what will inevitably be a inducing sight.
If you fall within the ideal line of the solar eclipse, please send in your photos! I'd love to post and share your amazing photography with our listeners (and you will, of course, be credited). I'm incredibly disappointed I'm not going to be in the narrow zone next week, so I need to live vicariously through the rest of you!
For more information, check out some of these links!
After a short hiatus, the Real Brian Show crew is back to explain why beard nets are all the rage, among your other favorite conversations. Brian and his wife traveled through Seattle on their way to Alaska (scroll down for a photo gallery!). We'll review Dunkirk and Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Then, as such things are always on our minds... we'll talk about our favorite delectables.
In a world that increasingly blends reality and fantasy, why not tack on a Star Wars Themed Resort? We talk about the Star Wars resort that Disney just announced during this installment of The Real Brian Show. Imagine the possibilities! If you've been to the Harry Potter themed park, you'll understand how fantastic that immersion experience is. Check out the links below to learn more.
Note: There will be no episodes released the first week of August. We'll catch you back here on August 7!
You'll have to listen to the podcast in order to hear the full story! Here are the pictures from Brian's experience in the air.
In a recent episode we spent some time talking about whether or not we care what people think of us. On some level, we all let the words of others affect us and it's important to recognize it, accept it, and then process it. Closely related to this is the necessary task of living a life of balance. So many of us go through extremes: ups and downs, feast and famine, rest and overwork. In this episode we’ll spend some time exploring how balance is essential for our professional side as well as our let-loose side.
The image used for the banner in this episode is one of many, many pictures depicting a hobby known as Rock Balancing. Clever name, I know. This image shows pretty standard layering of rocks, but there are some artists who seriously excel in this craft. It becomes less of a hobby and more of a discipline, requiring patience and creativity. To see some incredible sculptures, search the Internet for Michael Grab.
Whether you’re into rock balancing or some other hobby, there is this unspoken realization that the more you practice that hobby, the better you get at it. It can be so fun or so interesting, however, that it begins to consume you. Brian uses the example of video gaming, but it’s not exclusive to that. My hobby is writing, and when I let myself get lost in a new story, it becomes all I want to do. I start ignoring my family, friends, and my daily responsibilities start backlogging.
Sometimes in order to complete a project well, you really do have to throw yourself into it entirely. And in the realm of creativity, that is OK! What we’re addressing in this episode isn’t a criticism of focusing your artistic mind, but drawing attention to the fact that when something, anything, becomes all consuming so that other essential and important aspects of life get ignored, it might require us to pull back, refocus, distribute our attention, and then dive back in.
It's that time of the week, again. Hump day is over and done. That awkward day between hump day and the weekend is also gone. Which can only mean that it's SUPERHERO FRIDAY and we have a podcast ready for you to enjoy. Thanks, once again, to the faithful Nightfox for his wonderful presence on The Real Brian Show. We hope you all have a fantastic weekend!
Represent yourself! In this episode, Antonio Centeno joins Brian to discuss personal branding. He has a fascinating backstory, from a U.S. Marine to Philosophy major at Cornell to an entrepreneur, Antonio now finds himself in the niche of a lifestyle and business coach, His approach to personal branding is not outlandish, it's not absurdly expensive, it's actually based on a very customizable approach to dressing: Find It, Own It. By establishing some basic parameters, like wearing clothes that fit, Antonio demonstrates that transitioning into a person brand isn't all that difficult.
Antonio Centeno is the founder of Real Men Real Style and a co-founder of Menfluential, a men's lifestyle and business conference. He has created thousands of articles & videos on men's style and is the creator of the internet's best style course for professionals - The Personal Image Blueprint.
Though Antonio's advice is geared mostly toward men, a lot of the principles he defines are excellent advice to both men and women. Perhaps most of his videos, like What Does Your Facial Hair Signal and 20 Things Men Should Never Wear, aren't exactly translatable between genders, but his tips extend beyond specifically dressing better. Antonio has a ton of resources around communication skills, traveling, and, most significantly mindset (like How To Reset A Bad Day). Go check out his website! NOW!
Happy Superhero Friday! The Nightfox joins the Real Brian to end your week in style and to provide a very important rule of thumb: don't kiss your chickens. It is hypothesized that the chicken was first domesticated to be used for cockfights, not for food. Since there are 25 billion of them in the world, making them the most populous bird of any species, we suppose there's enough to accomplish both now. We've got a great lineup for you today, some real stories about road rage and reviews of video games like Ghost Recon: Wildlands and Diablo 3, so sit back and enjoy the ride!
It's that time of year... time for the summer blockbusters! Wonder Woman and Transformers have nearly already left screens, but now we have Spider-Man and Valerian coming out! We'll be watching these in the next week, so if you plan to do the same, why not write in and give us your reaction?
What movie is on your hotlist this summer?
From heartache and confusion comes an incredible legacy of kindness and goodness. Suzanne Miller shares the powerful story of her daughter's impactful life and how the concept Do A Liz Thing came about. We're so excited to share this interview with you because of what a great reminder it is on how simple showing kindness can be. By taking the focus off of ourselves and projecting our attention outward, we can unwittingly (or wittingly) touch someone else's life.
Sharing our random acts of kindness can sometimes feel like we're patting ourselves on the back or getting a high off how great we are for being nice, but Suzanne Miller and her family turned it into a mode of encouragement. After her daughter's death, the Miller family received hundreds of letters from people they'd never met who described very detailed, particular stories about how Liz touched their life. Liz was an encouragement, a blessing, and a miracle to every life she touched.
Doing a Liz Thing doesn't mean bragging about the kind thing you did, but actually doing the kind thing. The Facebook page Suzanne and her family set up is an opportunity for people to humbly share how they helped someone in need in order to encourage others to do the same.
Nightfox and Shear Terror return to the Real Brian Show for a Superhero Friday installment that is as quaquaversal as 4th of July Fireworks. Also in this episode we introduce you to the girl next door, Red Banshee, who adds a great flavor to the mix! We cover a lot of ground in this episode, ramping up to a holiday here in the United States. As we'll be taking a break next week from your regularly scheduled program, soak it in and get your fix.
While you wait for the next episode, go try a new beverage at a local shoppe near you, then write or call us and tell us about that experience! You'll hear things like avocado latte and coconut beer in this episode, but we know there is more going on out there in the world. Right now, in Minnesota, Ginger Beer and Kombucha are all the rage. Everyone is brewing their own Kombucha, and generally I enjoy it! Ginger beer can be really potent and depending on the brand I often can't drink very much. But it's definitely worth a try if you've never had it.
We talked about rest back in episode 45. Do you make time for rest? Do you give yourself permission to rest? It's a concept that really should be revisited frequently because it is so easy to get and stay busy and far too many people are willing to help you stay busy. Not enough people help you find rest. Seeking out a balance between work and play will likely always be a constant struggle, but our intention isn't to reprimand or shake our fingers! As always we want to draw you back to basic principles that will hopefully provide you with encouragement to make small adjustments in order to reap big benefits.
Much of what Brian talks about in this episode has to do with creating boundaries and then sticking to them. Boundaries are super interesting to me, both in the physical sense and in whatever abstract way we want to think about them.
I want to paint a little picture analogy between physical boundaries and abstract boundaries. When I was growing up, my backyard was full of tall Maple and Elm trees. They were so thick we couldn't see our neighbors behind us. When I was in fifth or sixth grade, my city was hit by a severe straight-line winds storm which took down nearly all of them. We ended up cutting down 22 trees in total. For the first 13 years of my life, the boundary around my house had always been clearly defined by the thick grove of trees.
When that storm hit, the boundary became much less defined. Our house was much more visible and we started to get a lot of unwelcomed traffic through our yard. To alleviate this, my dad put up a fence. It wasn't much of a fence, but it kept people from cutting straight through our yard (and ruining gardens and such). The backyard just felt naked though, and the privacy we felt went way down. A couple years later, my dad trans-planted some pine trees. They were baby ones and were going to take time to grow up... and only now, 15 years later, do they really afford us more privacy.
It is really hard to replace boundaries, you always end up sacrificing something. Had my dad chosen to put up a tall wood fence, like our neighbor did, we would have lost a lot of sunlight to different parts of our yard. We might have experienced some vandalism as well due to where our yard is in the neighborhood. Had we transplanted 22 trees, to replace the ones that had once been there, we would be looking at a decade or two of waiting to regain privacy. And then we had to think about the message we were sending by the type of fence we put up, how tall it was, and all of that. Are they snobs? Are they shut-ins?
When one boundary gets knocked down in our lives, sometimes it can be hard to put it back up or replace it with something else. We try a variety of things that don't entirely feel the same and don't protect us in the same way, and over time we do other things to help support that boundary we've re-established. And sometimes we just choose to live with the way things are because it's more hassle trying to re-do it than to just go with it. But for all these boundaries, when they keep us from experiencing rest, they are not doing their job.
So discard perception. Discard what other people think. Don't be afraid to use boundaries as a means to give yourself rest so that you can give back to other people. Boundaries around a home can help preserve an area and cultivate it to be a thing of beauty and a thing of rest. Boundaries are NOT barricades! When we start thinking of them as such, we lose sight of the purpose boundaries are meant to bring us.
As the world continuously double dips into the status quo, Abel James and The Real Brian are here to tell you that you don't have to settle for that! Demand more and better by going against conformity and put your energy and money toward those things that make this world a better place.
Abel James is a New York Times bestselling author and modern-day Renaissance man. One of America's most trusted names in Health and Performance, he stars as a Celebrity Coach on ABC television and has been featured in People Magazine, WIRED, Entertainment Tonight, and NPR. Abel is host of the #1 podcast in 8+ countries, Fat-Burning Man, Abel has helped millions reclaim their health and perform at their best with cutting-edge science and technology, outdoor adventures, and outrageously good food.
Click here to learn more about Abel James!
Happy Superhero Friday! We hope you had a fantastic week and want to help you kick off the weekend in style. The Real Brian and Nightfox have another anything goes installment for you!
Happy Hump Day! We know how hard the middle of the week can be, but it doesn't have to be. Instead of pumping our bodies with quick fixes like a 5-Hour Energy drink or (if you're me) more and more coffee, let's explore the most natural remedy to sluggishness. Energy drinks or other similar power-ups are like band-aids for a deeper real problem. Our amazing bodies store energy and will inevitably use up what supply they have. If you're not storing energy, then what does your body have to use?
There are seven spectral classes, yellow being smack in the middle. On the low (cold) end is blue and on the high (hot) end is red. We live under a Class G2 star which provides Earth with exactly what it needs to sustain life. I personally do not find this to be a coincidence! The sun has fascinated humans for as long as humans have been humans. It has been worshipped, venerated, studied, contemplated, avoided, sought... but not yet explored. We have a much more complete understanding of the sun now than we ever did, and yet some basic truths don't seem to absorb quite as well as the sun's rays in mid-summer.
Superman's powers develop as a result of absorbing the yellow sun's UV rays. Comic book canon calls it the photonucleic effect. What I love about the story of Superman is that sort of tells an exaggerated story of humans through the lens of this alien with super-human powers. We all have this ability to be different, to set ourselves apart, and to use the natural elements of our world to accomplish great things, and when Superman absorbs the yellow sun he flies and fights to these great heights we can only imagine. But Superman would not be Superman without the yellow sun. In fact, comic book canon makes it very clear that when Superman lives under a red sun (a star so hot that its power is very, very weak) he loses his power.
The sun is a source of life. Without the sun, everything on planet earth would die. But we don't just live on the sun, we need many nutrients and many elements and neglecting any of them will cause deficiencies. If getting some natural sun has fallen out of your daily routine, add it back in and start to take inventory of your energy levels. Power up!
Welcome back to The Real Brian Show! In this installment, Brian chats with Jodi Flynn, founder of Women Taking the Lead. Brian and Jodi originally connected through Podcaster's Paradise, where he interviewed her in episode 62. In bonding over mindset, attitude, and the importance of communication permeating all aspects of relationships and business, the two have plenty of experiences to share and lessons learned that can help us analyze tough situations.
Jodi Flynn is the Founder of Women Taking the Lead, a podcast and community of ambitious entrepreneurial women who want to go BIG. She works with Type-A women who are already successful but have not yet achieved the level of success they want to achieve. Jodi helps her clients set priorities, get organized, in action and overcoming obstacles so they can achieve their biggest goals with ease. She became an Amazon bestselling author with the release of her book, Accomplished: How to Go from Dreaming to doing.
Live from Vegas.... it's Superhero Friday! While on location in the city that never sleeps... The Real Brian and Darrell Darnell make the most of it. Instead of sticking to the old adage, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, we're more of the share-everything-and-hope-for-the-best mindset. Help us welcome Darrell Darnell to The Real Brian Show co-host family and have fun with this Superhero Friday installment!
In the course of vocalizing frustrations, it's okay to vent... but complaining without any desire to find a solution can become tiring to everyone around us. In this mid-week espresso shot, let's talk about complaining.
Complaining about a problem without proposing a solution is called whining.
Many people attribute this quote to the late President Theodore Roosevelt. I've never been able to find much evidence of this, but it is very much in line with his p olitics and general philosophy. On April 23, 1910, President Roosevelt gave a speech in Paris, which has since been titled Citizenship in a Republic. It is one of my favorite speeches (alongside Lincoln's Gettysburg Address and Winston Churchill's Blood, Toil, Tears and Sweat), because within it we hear these powerful words:
It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.
The two quotes may seem unrelated, but I think there is an underlying component to them that is entirely intrinsic to the discussion about complaining and the call to find solutions. Complaining about a problem, even something we can genuinely characterize as altruistic (i.e. venting), is an expression that bears a negative connotation. It puts us in a state of being dissatisfied and discontent, a state of grievance, in which another entity has more control over the situation than we do and we are at its (or their) mercy.
If portion sizes are small at a restaurant, we complain... because we ordered a meal, built up expectations, and then were disappointed that those expectations (or needs of hunger) were not met. It is by choice that we put ourselves at other people's mercy, either to satisfy our own needs or to hand off jobs we are incapable of doing ourselves, while still maintaining an element of expectancy over the work needing to be done. We are both incapable and opinionated.
The great eye-opening essence of Roosevelt's speech is a reminder that as a free people, as each possessing individual citizenship within a democratic republic, it is our duty to not let our systems evolve from refinement into fastidiousness. Basically, I interpret this to mean that there is something to be said for developing refined systems, ones that run efficiently and in the best interest of all who work for that system's common good; but when the details become more important than the missional objective, we've lost sight of who is actually doing the work.
Complaining is an effect of something deeper than a momentary problem. It is a culmination of frustration that should have been tackled earlier. My personal objective in life is to vocalize disagreements when they arise in a way that encourages discussion about an approach to a problem instead of letting those disagreements build up and, over time, develop into complaints about the way things are being run. I don't want to be a whiner, and I don't want to constantly be the voice of dissent, but I am not doing myself any good, nor those around me, by letting my disagreements fester and, perhaps, spread to others.
In this installment of Anything Goes, the creative and lively Megan joins Brian and Nightfox! We quickly dub Morgan with a proper super hero name and learn that she is all about justice, but will also fight dirty. And thus, Shear Terror is born! So from prank calls to haircuts, we're just a couple of friends sitting around and having a conversation....asking you to come along for the ride! Along the way we definitely provide you with 13 reasons Morgan belongs on this podcast.
Emily Moberly is the founder and CEO of Traveling Stories, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to helping kids fall in love with reading by the 4th grade. Since 2010 Emily and her team have established eight international libraries and six StoryTent literacy programs in Southern California. More than 6,400 children improve their reading skills through Traveling Stories programs each year. For her work with Traveling Stories, Emily was named one of the “Top 10 Female Entrepreneurs to Watch in San Diego” by Forbes Magazine; Microsoft featured her in their Do More campaign; 10 News and LEAD San Diego awarded her a Leadership Award and in 2015, San Diego Magazine named her a finalist for the San Diego Woman of the Year award. In addition, the San Diego Business Journal named her a finalist for the Women Who Mean Business Awards in 2012 and 2015.
Happy Superhero Friday! What did you think of the first week in the new format? We'd love to hear from you. Leave a comment below or connect with us. We're excited to have Camron, the Nightfox, on board with us and proudly present another installment of Anything Goes where our conversation is chock full of all our favorite things. And we'll explain why we're being pollinated by gnats. Maybe.
In the first grade I went to the nurse and told her I had rat bites. My embarrassed mother had to clarify: no, no... she has gnat bites. Far less severe. As much as I love words now, I wasn't always proficient at wielding them. I couldn't rhyme, I mixed up words and I mixed up sounds within a word (i.e. kitchen = chicken, couch = chouc). My family loves to remind me of this, but it never stopped me from using words or becoming better at using them! Getting teased for something you may already be self-conscious of can be brutal, and it can make it difficult to try and overcome those embarrassments, but if you love it... press on and do what you do!
Time for your mid-week espresso shot! There are a couple interesting facts about espresso that speak profoundly into what we want to do with this weekly installment, but I just want to highlight the most important one.
Espresso is brewed by forcing nearly boiling water through coffee beans that are ground very fine. It results in a beverage that is thicker than coffee and, thus, has a higher ratio of caffeine per unit (though less than a regular cup of coffee).
We want to give you a small, but powerful, energizing burst in the middle of your week! There may be less content than a full episode, but sometimes circumstances call for a delicacy, like espresso.
“Our greatest fear should not be of failure, but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.”
-- Francis Chan
Bearing the pain of failure is enough to make anyone curl up into a ball and waste away evenings clutching a pale of ice cream and binge-watching LOST for the 16th time, but, frankly, failure is part of life. Failure, when left to sit and wallow in its own misery, is useless and meaningless as any other unfortunate circumstance. But failure, when reflected upon and repurposed into lessons that came from a circumstance that was not successful, can make it hurt less. And every time we repurpose failure it hurts less.
Oh, sometimes, no matter how prepared we are, it still hurts as much as it ever did. But like most of what we talk about on The Real Brian Show, approaching every situation with the right attitude and a trained mindset of positive thinking and serenity enables us to rise above our perceived failures. We can turn non-successes into opportunities for growth.
But what about the other side of this? What about the emptiness that comes from succeeding at things that don't matter while the true goals, the true ambitions, lie dormant? Fearing failure is easy because it is obvious and sometimes really serious, and it's become clearer to me in recent years how ready I am to allow the most obvious fears to take hold of me. Is failing worse than never trying? It's definitely something I struggle with, trying to evaluate whether taking a risk and failing is worth potentially giving up a hobby that brings me a lot of joy. When I break it down, it seems pretty irrational, but fear is irrational.
The day I knock it into my own head to quit pursuing those things that don't matter... I'll let you know.