How to be Unreasonable When Facing Pain Ep 143

Summary Notes


In a candid discussion, the speaker reflects on the concept of resilience, contrasting how champions respond to adversity with an "unreasonable" mindset versus the average person's "reasonable" reaction. Citing examples like Adrian Peterson and Lance Armstrong, who overcame significant setbacks to achieve greatness, the speaker emphasizes the importance of an unconventional approach to hardship. Personal anecdotes are shared, including a team member's decline in performance due to personal issues, highlighting the interconnectedness of life's challenges and the impact of one's narrative on overcoming them. The speaker urges listeners to adopt a mindset that not only copes with difficulties but uses them as fuel to become stronger, thus differentiating champions from the rest. The key takeaway is to choose the story you tell yourself, one that turns adversity into a stepping stone for success.

Summary Notes

Introduction to the Video's Concept

  • Speaker A introduces the video with a reflection on an idea that has been developing over time.
  • The concept explores how individuals respond to adversity, using the phrase "if shit happens, do you overcome shit, or do you become shit?"
  • The speaker mentions the saying "bad things happen in threes" and discusses its perceived truth, not due to a karmic force but because of how people react to negative events.

What's going on, everyone? Happy Wednesday. Hope you guys are rocking your week. So far today, I wanted to make a video that I have had on my mind that has been marinating. And I've. I had, like, this is kind of a culmination of, like, three or four things that I'm just kind of putting together, and I think it's gonna turn out well.

The quote sets the stage for the video, indicating that the speaker has been contemplating the topic for a while and it has been influenced by multiple factors.

And I'm still struggling with the name for this video, so maybe you'll see what. What it turns out to be, but it kind of stemmed from just. Just a few different, small, minor situations that kind of bubbled into this overarching concept, which is, like, if shit happens, do you overcome shit, or do you become shit?

The speaker is uncertain about the title of the video but explains that the content is derived from various minor situations that led to a broader theme about overcoming adversity.

And what I mean by that is that a lot of times there's a saying, bad things happen in threes. I don't know if you've ever heard that bad things happen in threes. And I actually think there's a lot of truth to the saying. And I don't think it's because of some karmic force or some universal force of threes that sends negative things your way, but because people become shit when shit happens to them.

Speaker A discusses the saying "bad things happen in threes," suggesting that its validity may be rooted in people's reactions to adversity rather than a mystical force.

Champions' Response to Adversity

  • The speaker admires the term "champion" and uses it to describe individuals who exhibit resilience.
  • Examples of champions include Adrian Peterson and Lance Armstrong, who overcame significant challenges to achieve success.
  • The mindset of a champion is contrasted with the average person's response to adversity, such as serious injuries or personal setbacks.

But champions are unreasonable in how they bounce back from failure and how they bounce back from shit happening. Right? Adrian Peterson tore his ACL, which is a career ending injury for just about everyone, and then comes back and almost sets the record for the NFL in rushing. Lance Armstrong gets testicular cancer, and then all of a sudden wins the Tour de France a bunch of times.

The speaker highlights the exceptional ability of champions to recover from setbacks that would typically end careers, using Adrian Peterson and Lance Armstrong as examples.

The Impact of Adversity on an Individual's Life

  • Speaker A recounts the story of a team member whose personal issues led to a decline in work performance and eventual dismissal.
  • The individual's reasonable but negative reaction to the events affected various aspects of life, including relationships.
  • The speaker suggests that the sequence of negative events is interconnected and can lead to a downward spiral.

And so recently, there was a team member of ours who just had a bunch of personal things happen to him in his normal life, right? And the problem was that after that happened, it affected his work, and then his performance started to slip, and so then we had to let him go.

The speaker describes a real-life example of how personal adversity can negatively impact professional life, leading to a team member's job loss.

And I'm thinking about his perception of life in the universe and the world. And because he acted in a completely reasonable way, he was completely distraught. He was extremely upset. It bubbled into his work. It bubbled into his life.

The quote explains how the individual's reasonable response to personal issues was nonetheless detrimental, causing distress that spilled over into work and other areas of life.

I'm sure if he had a girlfriend or maybe he doesn't have a girlfriend. I don't know. I'm sure it affected that relationship, too. And maybe she will then see him and say, like, man, you're not the way you used to be anymore. You're always negative, you're always down on yourself. And then she breaks up with him and it's like, oh, my God, within the span of a couple of weeks, I had this horrible thing happen. And then I got fired from my job and then my girlfriend broke up with me. But the reality is that they're all connected, right?

Speaker A speculates on the potential impact of the individual's situation on a romantic relationship, suggesting a domino effect where one negative event leads to another.

The Misconception of Adversity Strengthening Individuals

  • The common saying "what doesn't kill you makes you stronger" is challenged by the speaker.
  • Speaker A observes that for most people, adversity does not make them stronger, but rather it continues to weaken them.
  • The speaker contrasts the end of life with the beginning, noting that those who let adversity beat them down appear worn out, whereas champions allow adversity to strengthen them.

But the reality is that they're all connected, right? And so the saying, like, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger is not true because for most people, what doesn't kill them makes them weaker, right? It just injures them even more and more and more.

The speaker questions the validity of the saying, arguing that adversity often has a cumulative weakening effect on individuals rather than strengthening them.

And you look at the people who are at the end of their life versus the beginning of their life, and what ends up happening is they just look beat up and used, right? Because they let these situations that happen to them in their life beat the strength out of them rather than beat the strength into them, right?

Speaker A contrasts the appearance of individuals at the end of their life with those at the beginning, attributing a worn-out look to the negative impact of life's adversities rather than resilience.

And so I think that's the fundamental difference that happens between champions, right? It's like, do you let the world, do you let life beat the strength out of you or beat it into you?

The quote summarizes the speaker's view on the fundamental difference between champions and others: champions use adversity to become stronger, while others may be weakened by it.

Personal Narratives and Overcoming Adversity

  • The speaker reflects on the excitement they feel when facing adversity because of the potential story of overcoming it.
  • There is a distinction between common responses to trauma and those that lead to exceptional outcomes.
  • The speaker suggests that to achieve uncommon success, one must react to challenges in uncommon ways.
  • Emphasizing the concept of sublimation, the speaker describes how negative energy can be channeled into positive actions.
  • The idea is that coping mechanisms can be redirected from harmful behaviors to beneficial ones.

"I'm probably statistic in this way, but if something really bad happens, I get this weird amount of excitement because I am excited about the story that I'm going to be able to tell based on this low and how I overcame."

This quote highlights the speaker's unique perspective on adversity, viewing it as an opportunity to create a powerful personal narrative of overcoming challenges.

"And so if you want the things that everyone else doesn't have, you have to act in ways that everyone else doesn't act in, which means you have an unreasonable response to trauma, an unreasonable response to pain."

The speaker underscores the need for an extraordinary response to adversity in order to achieve extraordinary results, contrasting this approach with more common, reasonable reactions.

"So that's where, let's say, somebody who's an addict will quit their addiction, but then they will throw themselves into an addiction of fitness, right? Which if you're comparing cocaine or heroin addiction to working out a lot, it's a much better addiction, right? And so it's called supplementing."

The speaker explains sublimation by giving an example of how a negative coping mechanism, such as addiction, can be transformed into a positive one, like exercise, illustrating the concept of redirecting energy from harmful to beneficial outlets.

The Role of Coping Mechanisms in Success

  • Coping mechanisms are an inevitable response to trauma and stress.
  • The speaker challenges listeners to use their coping mechanisms as a driving force for success rather than an excuse for failure.
  • The narrative one chooses around their coping strategy can determine the trajectory of their success or failure.

"If you have a trauma, you will cope. It's just, how do you cope? How do you cope with shit? Do you let that become the impetus, the story of how you're not going to lose, how you're going to win no matter what the circumstances are, right?"

The speaker emphasizes that while coping is a universal response to trauma, the way one copes can shape the story of their life, either as a tale of victory or as an explanation for defeat.

"But at the end of the day, it doesn't matter, because what matters is who wins in the end."

This quote reinforces the idea that the ultimate measure of success is not the obstacles one faces but the final outcome of overcoming them.

Perception of Pain and Trauma

  • The speaker discusses how pain and trauma are subjectively experienced and perceived differently by individuals.
  • There is a commentary on the tendency to judge the severity of others' pain from an external viewpoint.
  • The speaker suggests that pain is relative and should not be measured absolutely across different individuals' experiences.

"Different video, but I think it wraps so well into this is that everyone perceives pain the same. And what I mean by that is what one rich girl who gets brought up in a spoiled household when her dad doesn't show up to her ballet performance, it could be a ten out of ten trauma for her, right?"

The speaker points out that the perception of pain is subjective, and what may seem like a minor event to one person could be deeply traumatic to another, challenging the notion of absolute judgments of pain.

Call to Action for Listeners

  • The speaker humorously encourages listeners to rate and review the show.
  • This demonstrates an engagement strategy to connect with the audience and promote the podcast.

"Hey, if you're a return listener and you have not rated or reviewed the show, I want you to know that you should feel absolutely terrible about yourself and everything else in the world."

This quote, delivered in a joking manner, is a call to action for listeners to engage with the podcast by rating and reviewing, which is important for the show's success and visibility.

Growth of the Podcast

  • The podcast's growth is reliant on word-of-mouth recommendations.
  • The speaker encourages listeners to share the podcast to support entrepreneurs.
  • The speaker emphasizes the collective effort required to spread the podcast.

"The only way that podcast grows through word of mouth, and this is you joining hands with me and helping as many entrepreneurs as we possibly can, because no one is coming to save us. It's just us."

The quote highlights the importance of listener support for the podcast's growth and the shared responsibility in aiding entrepreneurs.

Pain and Expectations

  • Pain is relative and not absolute; it varies according to individual expectations.
  • There is a higher suicide rate among high-earning white and Asian ethnicities, suggesting that success does not shield from pain.
  • The speaker argues that diminishing someone's pain based on their circumstances is inappropriate.

"Expectations are the things that yield pain when they're not met."

This quote explains that unmet expectations, rather than specific events, are the primary source of pain.

Reaction to Pain

  • An individual's response to their most intense pain defines their potential to overcome and succeed.
  • The speaker considers how one wants to be remembered or the story they want to tell as a powerful coping mechanism.

"How do you react to your ten out of ten pain? And how you react is going to predicate whether you become a champion or not."

The quote emphasizes the significance of one's reaction to severe pain in determining their success and resilience.

Coping Mechanisms and Personal Narrative

  • The speaker reflects on their own difficult experiences and the motivational power of envisioning a successful future narrative.
  • Personal hardships are framed as part of a story of eventual triumph.

"What story do I want to tell? What story do I want told about me in these situations?"

The quote reflects the speaker's strategy of using future storytelling as a means to cope with and frame current hardships.

Chain Reactions of Failure

  • People often allow a single failure to spiral into multiple negative outcomes.
  • The speaker suggests that strength is developed by using adversity as a catalyst for growth rather than succumbing to it.

"That's why things happen that are bad in strings of things, right? They get broken up with, then they lose their job, and then all of these other things happen, but because they let one thing affect everything rather than letting one thing make them stronger."

The quote describes the domino effect of failures and the importance of resilience to prevent a cascade of negative events.

Indifference of the Market and Relationships

  • The speaker posits that the market, coworkers, and even intimate partners, on some level, do not care about individual struggles.
  • The assertion is that people are inherently self-serving, and relationships are often based on how one makes the other feel.

"The market doesn't care, right? Your coworker doesn't care, your lover, your boyfriend, your wife on some level doesn't care."

The quote suggests a pragmatic view of interpersonal and professional relationships, highlighting a perceived lack of empathy.

Conditional Nature of Relationships

  • The speaker challenges the concept of unconditional love, arguing that all human relationships have conditions.
  • The threshold for these conditions may be extended for family, but it is not limitless.

"In my opinion, there's no such thing. In the human world of unconditional. There are conditions."

This quote expresses the speaker's belief that unconditional love does not exist and that all relationships are bound by certain conditions or limits.

Acceptance of Indifference

  • People are generally indifferent to others' excuses or reasons for failure.
  • Accepting this indifference can lead to peace of mind.
  • Understanding that personal stories of overcoming adversity are more compelling and inspiring.

No one gives a shit. No one cares. And so if you accept that and realize that your excuse of what happened is irrelevant to the outcome that you want, then you can kind of, in some way, get peace about the fact that, cool, what story are people going to tell about this situation?

The quote emphasizes the need to accept that others may not be concerned with one's personal struggles or excuses and that this realization can lead to a sense of peace.

The Power of Adversity in Storytelling

  • Adversity can enhance a success story, making it more compelling and inspiring.
  • Everyone faces challenges, but success often comes to those who persevere.
  • The narrative of overcoming obstacles is universal and relatable.

When you have that horrible thing happen to you, there are two stories that can be told, right? If there's the guy that nothing happens to and then he's successful, the story is not nearly as compelling, not nearly as inspiring as status producing as a story where someone lost it and then despite that, succeeded anyway through grit and tenacity...

This quote suggests that stories of overcoming significant challenges are more impactful and inspirational than those without such adversity.

Choosing Your Narrative

  • The story you tell yourself influences your ability to achieve goals.
  • Self-narrative shapes personal resilience and future success.
  • Using past challenges as a source of strength is crucial for facing future obstacles.

The goal that you have is going to be on the other side of the story that you are going to not only have told about you, but that you will be telling yourself.

The quote highlights the importance of the narrative one creates about their own experiences, as it directly affects one's goals and the drive to achieve them.

Resilience Through Comparative Hardships

  • Comparing current challenges to past hardships can provide perspective.
  • Reflecting on previous triumphs over adversity can fuel current and future success.
  • The choice of narrative can determine whether one becomes a champion or succumbs to failure.

Was this harder than my dad beating me every day?... So I can do this, too. And this is the story that I choose to tell, and I'm going to double down harder than I ever did and use this as fuel to win harder.

This quote conveys the idea of using past adversities as a benchmark to gauge current challenges and to strengthen the resolve to succeed despite them.

The Separation of Champions

  • Champions distinguish themselves by thriving under pressure.
  • Most people do not become champions because they cannot withstand adversity.
  • The reaction to difficulties can lead to either failure or inspiration and strength.

And that is what separates the champions from the not. And that's why most people aren't champions, because they crack under pressure...

The quote identifies the key difference between champions and others: the ability to endure and leverage adversity rather than being overwhelmed by it.

The Inspirational Message

  • Adversity is inevitable, and one's response to it is critical.
  • The choice is between using adversity to become stronger or allowing it to weaken you.
  • Sharing experiences of overcoming adversity can inspire and strengthen others.

So the inspirational tone for the message is just, that shit's going to happen. And it's just a question of what story you want to tell about it and whether you're going to use that to make you stronger or let it make you weaker.

The quote encapsulates the overall message: adversity is a given, and the way one deals with it will determine whether it serves as a source of strength or a cause for weakness.

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