In this episode, Circus Medicine Specialist, Emily Scherb, talks about all things circus.
Today, Emily talks about recreational circus, how physical therapy comes into play, common circus injuries, and the things physical therapists should be aware of. How is “circus” defined?
Hear about important lingo, one of Emily’s favourite circus stories, and get some valuable advice, all on today’s episode of The Healthy, Wealthy & Smart Podcast.
• “Circus is everything that can happen in a performance environment that would be defined as ‘circus.’”
• “Ask questions. It’s okay to not know. With these artists, they’re expecting you to not know.”
• “Figuring out the demands of the sport can be really challenging if you don’t speak the language.”
• “Every circus artist has a video of them training on their phone.”
• “Use the knowledge you have, and then seek more information.”
• “Circus really is for everyone.”
• “Be brave enough and take the time to listen more. It really does take bravery to admit you don’t know everything.”
Dr. Emily Scherb is a physical therapist specializing in circus and performing arts medicine. Through her 30 years of training and working in the circus arts she has gained deep insight on how circus bodies work in the air and on the ground. Emily now teaches workshops for circus artists, instructors, and healthcare providers with the mission of improving health and safety in circus training and performance. Her bestselling book Applied Anatomy of Aerial Arts was published in 2018.
Circus, Physiotherapy, Medicine, Artists, Safety, Injuries, Lingo, Performance, Healthy, Wealthy, Smart, Healthcare, Training, Fitness,
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Read the Full Transcript Here:
Hi, Emily. Welcome to the podcast. I'm happy to have you here.
Speaker 2 (00:06):
Hi, thank you so much for having me. It's really exciting to get, to spend some time talking about circus with you.
Speaker 1 (00:11):
Yes, and I'm excited because as we were talking before we went on the air it was, it sort of changed my outlook on what circus is and what circus quote unquote performers are. So we're going to get into all of that, which I think the audience will really love. But before we do that, can you talk a little bit about your journey into this niche, into working with circus performers or circus athletes?
Speaker 2 (00:40):
Absolutely. I started off as a kid who loved gymnastics love to flip and fly and just be in my body and move through space. And I stumbled on circus as a hobby at a summer camp when I was a kid. So I started doing circus and I was really young and realized that I loved to perform way more than I love to compete. So the competition aspect Gnostics was fun for me, but I really just liked being out there in front of the judges and smiling and doing my thing. And I realized I could do that with circus. And it was a really collaborative collaborative environment and very challenging and very similar ways. And so I started circus as a kid went through high school, continuing to expand my knowledge about spickets and my own body. When I could, there was not a lot of resources for learning circus at the time.
Speaker 2 (01:27):
And after high school, I moved out to the West coast and joined some aerial dance companies to continue to pursue professionally knowing I'd go back to school eventually. And I did. So I went, I went to undergrad every summer, either working at a summer camp teaching circus, cause that was a popular place for circus schools to be, or wherever I could get a job teaching circus doing circus during the summers after college, once again, much, much to my parents' chagrin. I took more time off to go back and do more circus. And I moved to New York to your neck of the woods, spent some time there working with a dance company called strep and with trapeze school, New York while I was there and teaching circus, doing circus and professionally using my body through space as a performing artist before going back to grad school. And then even in grad school, I may have taken residencies and done my clinical rotations where there were circus schools. So captain was part of my life for sure.
Speaker 1 (02:29):
That's amazing. And now before we go on, can you define what circus is? So you're teaching circus and people think, wait, circus is, I thought circus was a show or an event. So I'm a little confused. So can you define what that is?
Speaker 2 (02:47):
Really great question. When I say circus, it's also going to be slightly different than when someone else says circus circus is everything that can happen in a performance environment that would be defined as circus, which is debatable even in the circus community. So circus is acrobatics. It's aerial artists, it's juggling, it's clowning, it's acting, it's dancing, it's communicating through movement, it's performing arts and what qualifies a circus is kind of the definition of the individual company members that are involved in the, in the creation. When I say I'm teaching circus for me, I'm primarily teaching aerial arts, I'm teaching flying trapeze or I'm teaching aerial silks. It's like that fabric that hangs down or I'm teaching a static trapeze or rope or web there's lots of different apparatus and lots of different challenges for the body. I just prefer my challenges to be off the ground and in the air. So when I say teaching circus, I personally mean Ariel. Generally I have taught tumbling as well. But circus is a huge, huge arena for challenges to the body and performance challenges in space.
Speaker 1 (04:09):
Awesome. And now when, when we're talking circus and when people think of circus, they might think of Ringling brothers, Cirque de Solei, these, you know, grand extravagant performance artists. But I know what you want to talk about is the growth of what we would call recreational circus, recreational circus athletes, let's say. So I want you to talk a little bit more about that. I'm just going to throw the mic over to you to let the listeners know what the heck is that and where does a physical therapist come into play?
Speaker 2 (04:47):
Absolutely. so circus in the U S has grown exponentially in the last 15 or so years. We went from having maybe 10 schools for all levels. But like I said, I started a summer camp. That was an opportunity. A couple of the universities around the country have had circus schools. So like Florida state university has one. There's some youth circuses in, in like circus Ventas in Minneapolis, Minnesota when actually youth circus out here in Washington where I am, those have been around for a really long time, but then there's this phenomena of circus rapid rapid growth in this last 10 years. We've gone from those 10 or so schools to having over 800 schools in the U S that I know about, and that's counting circus schools. That's not including aerial yoga. And that's not including pole-dancing studios that might have an apparatus or gymnastics gym that might have an apparatus or two in their space.
Speaker 2 (05:46):
So circus has not only grown for recreational use of it's not only grown for recreational artists across the country to, to try to do after work or on the weekends. It's also growing in these other niches and, and kind of just keeps expanding. So there's things that we can all do after work or on the weekends to keep our bodies healthy. This can be our, you know, our soccer game instead of soccer game, I'm going to go take a class and I'm going to stay fit and stay strong and build my community through the circus world. The other thing that's really happening in, in an interesting way in circus is the development of what's called social circus, which is using social using, just using,
Speaker 3 (06:35):
There we go
Speaker 2 (06:38):
Social circus, which is using circus to do outreach and community building through specific groups often involving a social worker or using trainings that have a lot of which have been developed by search delay through a program, they call sick demo to do outreach in schools and in different settings that make people grow and increase physical literacy to also increase health literacy. There's a urban youth circus in St. Louis called circus harmony. That's been around for decades. I should know when, but it's been around for decades and they have youth classes and they also have these youth performers performing every weekend at a, at a museum. And they perform every weekend. They have the social responsibility of showing up, getting their work done. They, they really have that community building element. There's also been studies all over the world, but the one I'm thinking of in Canada in the fiscal education system that uses circus is as PE class to have an equal growth of both boys and girls.
Speaker 2 (07:47):
And they find that that does not have a gender differentiation. Everyone has an increase in physical literacy in those, in those groups. So it's a great way of reaching out that way. Here in Seattle, we have a women's group, a women's circus group. That's run by a social worker here which is a really great resource for, for these women. We also have a boys and girls club group that comes in and we have on the other side of things on the more medical side of things, we have circus it's been adopted for anyone to participate. There are juggling tools that don't actually involve throwing and catching. They involve rolling in gliding so that they can be a little more accessible. We can take our aerial apparatuses and lower them down to the ground. So we can use it like the aerial silks, more like a sling or a hammock where you can tie the bottom together.
Speaker 2 (08:36):
And you can use that for compression. You don't need to have quite as much balance or grip strength. So we've been able to do work with kids with cerebral palsy and had great work with them on the trampoline, kind of getting some, some input with them there and then taking them to the air and they get to do things that are cooler than their friends. They have to go back into and tell stories. And on the other side of that, we have adults with Parkinson's and we have a Parkinson circus group and using the novel learning novel movement, learning of circus with Parkinson's to make improvements and give them more comfort moving in their bodies as well. So circus has just really expanded into the recreational world and into every aspect of movement, which has been incredible boon to, to see, and, and to be on the sideline of, as a physical therapist, my personal interests tend to be more on the orthopedic side, but if there's someone out there who really loves working with pediatrics, and you want to get involved with circus, how cool, you know, someone, someone comes in your door and they have difficulty with dorsiflexion, but what if the goal is to hook their foot on something instead of just trying to make their ankle move, you know, and it gives different goals and different levels of excitement for all sorts of artists of all ages and abilities.
Speaker 1 (09:53):
I mean, this is so much more than I was thinking. I was literally thinking that what you do within circus medicine is just working with like Cirque de Solei or professional. Like I had no idea, the large umbrella that is sort of circus and that is circus performing and yeah, so much more fun,
Speaker 2 (10:19):
So fun and so cool. And it's incredible because all these schools have popped up that most of us can within a couple mile radius find a circus school to take a class in on the weekends if we want, or are likely to, as healthcare practitioners have a client will walk in the door, who's taken a class and wants to get back to doing it as their physical activity.
Speaker 1 (10:39):
Okay. Well, let, now let's talk about that. So, because let's say you're a physical therapist and maybe this is not your specialty, but like you said, if there's this huge rise in recreational circus, we may be seeing people who are coming in for an injury that maybe they got well doing circus. So let's talk about what are some, and if there are common injuries that one may see understanding to all the listeners understanding, like we said, this is a huge umbrella, so we're not going to go over every single injury, but let's talk about some common ones that maybe the everyday PT might see from one of their recreational circus athletes.
Speaker 2 (11:23):
Probably the most common one that I see in my practice is chronic overuse of the shoulder. And when I say overuse, I mean under preparedness for the activity that they're undertaking and that's because most of us live our day-to-day life, especially right now in front of our computers, typing away with their arms in front of us and reaching out to our laptops. And then when we go into the circus world and we're all of a sudden asked to bring our arms all the way up, overhead stabilize our entire body weight, without relationship to the ground, or only in relationship to the ground, if our legs are over our heads and we're in a handstand, our shoulders just aren't necessarily prepared for that level of load. And so there's definitely a pattern of different shoulder problems that crop up. So there's, there's a lot of chronic shoulder pain.
Speaker 2 (12:13):
And some of my job is also go into the circus schools and educate these artists that, that chronic shoulder pain is not normal and that they can get rid of it. So that's also a huge, huge thing is there's a, a saying in circus that is pretty pervasive, which is circus hurts and circus does hurt in that you're pushing your body in new ways. You may be having pressure against an apparatus. Maybe you get a bruise and that's okay, but circus shouldn't hurt like an injury hurt like deepen the joint hurts. So that's one of those things I try to get out there and, and explain to people there's of course, more acute injuries both of the shoulder and the rest of the body, but that, that's one of the biggest ones, especially in my aerialists and a little bit in my hand balancers.
Speaker 2 (13:01):
And even my recreational contortionists, that is a thing we have recreational contortionists now, which is incredible. The other really big injury is hamstring strains, proximal, hamstring strains are a huge one. I can. Same thing. Yeah. So we're getting to end range possibly with dynamic motion. So maybe if there are tumbling and working in the ground and they go to do a Cartwheel for the first time as an adult, or the first time in a very long time as an adult, and you're kicking your leg approaching end range rapidly without necessarily the preparation, strength and control at that end range. So that's, that's another one that's really common. And then, Oh, go ahead. Oh, say one of the, the third, probably most common injuries are ankle sprains, either from landings or falling off mats. So often protective equipment can also be in an interesting challenge as well.
Speaker 1 (13:55):
Oh yeah. That makes a lot of sense. I was a gymnast for many years when I was younger and I always had an ankle sprain. So I would feel like I remember being on crutches at least once a year, once every other year from an ankle sprain. So I can definitely see that now let's say you're a physical therapist like me or others who do not don't have like this vast knowledge on circus and what is involved. And someone's coming in to see me with chronic shoulder pain. I don't expect you to go through a whole eval here, but what are some things, maybe some questions we want to ask some things that we should be aware of and then maybe even some resources you can send us to, to look at, Hey, what are these people doing?
Speaker 2 (14:45):
Yeah. So great question, because I think it really will be a challenge that we will face soon. I hoping circus keeps growing beyond the pandemic. And as, as circus schools keep keep expanding. And I hope that you will get to see eventually a circus status walk into your clinic. So the first thing is, ask questions, ask questions, ask a lot of questions. It is okay to not know with these artists, they're expecting you to not know. They, they probably learned relatively recently, all the things that they're learning about circus. So ask questions, ask them what their discipline or their apparatus is. Ask them if they're an aerialist or a ground Acrobat. Are they doing handstands on the ground? Are they doing handstands on another person holding them up? Are they hanging from a bar or a horizontal apparatus grabbing kind of like with normal shoulder flection or are they holding a vertical apparatus?
Speaker 2 (15:43):
Like those aerial silks where they might be grabbing one hand up stacked on top of each other. Let's just give you, gives you an idea of what kind of shoulder range of motion they're going to need. And what they need to do with their body is also asking what level they are. Because as recreational circus grows, circus artists people are defining themselves as circus artists in different ways. So the recreational artists may still say, I'm a circus artist. And so might your professional. And so really diving down, what does their training look like and who are they? And then specifically to the shoulder, I just want to reassure everyone that circuit shoulders aren't that different. They are just functioning at, at end range. So you just need to make sure that all the things you normally look at are working and are working at and range. So if they need to get into field reflection, making sure those last 10 to 15 degrees, if their mechanics look perfect and I do a lot off the ground sorry, I do a lot on the ground without them being in the air. And you can learn a lot just by watching their movement through everyday activities. Even if they're not having pain with those, they may only have pain with their circus activity, but there's still things you can see with your professional life that really can be helpful.
Speaker 1 (16:57):
Awesome. And then obviously when you ask those questions, you look at that end range being so important, and then you get into the treatment. And again, this is where, you know, as a physical therapist, you're looking at, what are the demands of the sport? What does this person have to do? And how can you create a plan around that? Is that about right?
Speaker 2 (17:17):
Yeah. And so figuring out the demand to the sport can be really challenging if you don't speak the language or you don't know what the apparatus, the discipline is that they're doing. And here's the cool thing. Every single circus artist has a video of them training on their phone.
Speaker 1 (17:31):
Oh, that's so smart. Of course. Right?
Speaker 2 (17:33):
So everyone's like setting their phone up in the corner and watching themselves trained. If they have a move that's painful, they usually have a video of that too. If you didn't ask them in advance to take one, if you have that opportunity, that's fantastic. And if not, just ask them, Hey, you have a video of you doing that and you can get a general idea of what they're doing. If you, and, and that's interacting with your patient as well, in a way that's kind of building that trust trust with them, that that level of interest, if you have advanced knowledge and you kind of know what's going on, Google it, it's amazing. There's so many beautiful performers out there and you can Google almost any apparatus and see how they interact and what they need to do. Again, it's going to depend on their level, but it gives you an idea or even better. If you do have access to a circus school, taking a class, if you have the have the ability to do it, or just go out and observe and see kind of what's going on with their bodies it can be really fun and educational and the, both the students and the coaches usually love it. They love knowing that healthcare providers are interested and want to get involved with their bodies and help them perform better.
Speaker 1 (18:41):
Awesome. That's all great tips and great advice because I just don't want PTs to walk away from our conversation and be like, well, that was really cool, but what am I supposed to do? Well now, you know what to do.
Speaker 2 (18:53):
Absolutely. Yeah, yeah. There's plenty of resources out there. There's not plenty of resources out there. There are, there are resources out there to seek knowledge in how to work specifically with circus artists, but there's so much you can do with the knowledge that you already have. And that's the real key is use the knowledge you have and then seek more information. The artists are great resource themselves, and they really want to get the most out of the treatment and that interaction. I have learned so much from my artists. I give them an exercise, they come back making it three times more relevant, and I've taught me so much over the years, which is just absolutely incredible.
Speaker 1 (19:35):
Yeah. That's pretty amazing. And is there like lingo or jargon that if you're going to be working with this population that you should really know,
Speaker 2 (19:46):
There is some lingo, some jargon I can happily get you a link to a vocabulary list that I have. And I'll, I'll get that over to you. So that there's a little bit of a little bit of lingo that, that helps. There's some things that just having a few words mean so much to these artists to just feel welcome. So taking the time to look over and things like that is great. Some of the lingo you should know is Ariel is anything off the ground. A bass or a Porter is a person who throws someone else or move somebody off. And they place them in space, either from the ground or from hanging the flyer is the person who's being manipulated. Right. And then some other things that are really helpful, kind of coming from the domestics world, the idea of opening or closing a joint is kind of a similar to flection or extension opening in the shoulder cases.
Speaker 2 (20:47):
And closing would be extension hips. Closing the joint would be fluxion opening extension. So like when they're artists are saying things like that inversions are hand balancers are doing inversions when they are turning upside down. Our air lists are inverting when they turn upside down as well, but they're hanging from their hands. So that's another really common place that there's pain is as we're changing through all those planes of motion. That's another really helpful term to note as well. And then that, that vocab sheet just has some of the common ones on it. Of course the circus being so broad, it doesn't cover everything, but it gives it a good starting point, at least a starting point for us.
Speaker 1 (21:29):
Yeah, absolutely. And, and I'll have that in the show notes at on the website under this episode so that people can, can click and download that. And, you know, as you're saying all of this, gosh, it does sound a lot like the competitive cheerleaders, the flyers, the base. So, you know, learning about the rehab, learning about rehab within the circus space can really translate out to a lot of other areas of, of athletics, I suppose,
Speaker 2 (22:03):
And the other way around. So if you are working with St gymnast or park core artists or climbers or cheerleaders there's, there's so much inter relatedness of the movement, other, so there's so many connections in, in how there's so many connections and how these artists move to other things, because circus is so broad, it comes from a tumbling background, it comes from a climbing background. It comes from all these things that have been pulled into what is now currently circus either in a contemporary or a more traditional sense.
Speaker 1 (22:38):
Yes, yes. I think that's great. And, and for me, this cleared up a whole heck of a lot because I had no, I mean, I had an idea of maybe what a physical therapist can do, but boy, it's so much more, it's just so much more, so it was great. So much more than I thought. Like, I, would've never thought of working with children's cerebral palsy or adults with Parkinson's or the recreational, the growth of recreational circus didn't even come into my head and I'm in New York city. I see that trapeze on the Hudson, you know, like I know it exists and I know it's not professionals using it. Know, we all saw that sex in the city episode when Sarah Jessica Parker was flying on that trap piece. Right.
Speaker 2 (23:27):
Absolutely. I was happy to be involved with that school at the time. And it was a blast to be there.
Speaker 1 (23:33):
Yeah. Oh, I bet it was. Yeah, I bet. So I, so when people, when therapists say, Oh, I'll probably never see anyone that works in the circus, ah, you don't have to be a professional. So you might,
Speaker 2 (23:48):
I don't have to be a professional and those recreational artists need help. And if I have a moment to tell a story, I would love to, one of my favorite stories is I had the pleasure of talking to someone, not a patient actually. She's 72 year old woman. And she was telling me her story, which is she went golfing and she hurt her shoulder, playing golf for club into the ground, hurt her shoulder. And she was fine doing everything she does except for pole dancing because she was also a recreational pole dancer. And so she went to go see her doctor. And she said, doctor, my shoulder hurts my pole dance, but I'm fine. Otherwise I heard it playing golf. And he said, well, you shouldn't pull down. That's dangerous stick to golf. And it's like, it's just so interesting. Our preconceived notions of what our normal activities for our body. She's 72, she's spinning in space. She's holding her body weight up. She's doing proprioceptive training, strength, training full body movement, mobility work. How much better could it be than that? And, but golf is the normal activity. So the more we normalize recreational circus and make it more part of our practice, the more helpful we can be to keep our patients healthy and active in doing the things they love.
Speaker 1 (25:01):
Amazing. And now I have to tell you, after watching the super bowl halftime show, not this year, but last year with Jayla and Shakira, I was like, okay, I think I, I need to do some pole dancing here because, Oh my gosh, like J lo is out of this world, you know,
Speaker 2 (25:20):
It's an amazing fitness tool. It really is. Yeah. It's on so many aspects.
Speaker 1 (25:25):
Yeah. Oh, and I never thought of that as being in circus again, under that circus umbrella, but of course it is. It's just your apparatus is the pole versus the silks.
Speaker 2 (25:35):
Exactly. Exactly. And again, it'll depend on the person and how they want to define circus because it keeps changing. But there are many circuses now that do include pole and there's even something called swinging pole or hanging pole that moves in space instead of just staying.
Speaker 1 (25:50):
Oh my gosh. No, thank you. Oh my gosh. That's crazy. Well, is there anything, do we gloss over things? Is there anything that we didn't hit that you're like, Ooh, I really want the listeners to take home this.
Speaker 2 (26:06):
I just really want the listeners to understand that circus really is for everyone that you can go take a class right now and that you might have a client in your waiting room at any moment that has at least some experience with it. And being able to speak that language or having a little understanding of what they do can really go a long way.
Speaker 1 (26:23):
Excellent. I love it. Now, where can people find you? Where what's your website? Where are you on social media? If they have questions, they just want to say, wow, this was awesome. Where can they find you?
Speaker 2 (26:34):
They can find me on social media at the circus doc on Instagram, on Facebook, on Twitter. I'm on most of the things I was going to say, all the things that I'm on Tik TOK yet. But I am out there on at the circus doc and my website is the circus doc.com. And through there you can find the courses I teach and lots of information lists of physical therapists that like to work with circus artists and other resources to help improve your knowledge about circus bodies.
Speaker 1 (27:04):
Amazing. Well, thank you so much. And before we sign off, I have one last question and that's knowing where you are now in your life and your career. What advice would you give to your younger self let's say right out of, right out of PT school?
Speaker 2 (27:18):
I think the biggest thing is taking the time to you. The biggest thing is to be brave enough to take the time to listen more. I think it really does take bravery to admit you don't know everything and to do more listening and do more and better question asking both of my patients and of mentors and of just the resources around me. I think in the last couple of years, I've just done such a better job of connecting with humans like yourself and, and taking the time to ask questions because you just never know what you're going to learn and where you can help each other on this great journey that we're not in competition and having the bravery to collaborate.
Speaker 1 (27:58):
Amazing. What great advice, Emily, thank you so much for coming on. This was great. I'm like so excited because I feel I learned now and like, I was like, I want to go take a class. So next time I'm in New York, we'll go together. Perfect deal. I will hold you to that. Thank you so much for coming on.
Speaker 2 (28:15):
Thank you so much, guys. This was a bunch of fun,
Speaker 1 (28:17):
Everyone. Thanks so much for listening. Have a great week and stay healthy, wealthy and smart.
In this episode, author of The Full Spirit Workout, Kate Eckman, talks about achieving success and fulfillment.
Today, Kate talks about the 5 P’s of Confidence, the story behind the Full Spirit Workout, and how we can find personal fulfillment and success. How can we boost our mental metabolism? How can we achieve our goals?
Hear about coaching programs, how to handle perfectionism-itis, and get some valuable advice, all on today’s episode of The Healthy, Wealthy & Smart Podcast.
More about Kate Eckman
Kate Eckman empowers high-achieving individuals to actualize their full potential. She leverages her experience as a well-known communications, performance and mindfulness expert; accomplished entrepreneur; and former elite athlete to equip leaders with the tools, methodology, and energetic boost they need to compete and win at the game of life.
With a results-driven approach rooted in neuroscience, positive psychology, and whole-person coaching techniques, Kate helps her clients succeed in and out of the boardroom and on and off the field. She guides them to identify who they are beneath their titles and labels, clarity their priorities and values, and then co-create a game plan to get them from where they are now to where they most want to be … adding in some fun and humor along the way.
Kate incorporates a mind-body-spirit approach into her coaching engagements, recognizing that when we take care of our inner world, our outer world takes care of itself. Clients report that working with Kate leads to greater focus, energy and presence; increased performance and resilience; more meaningful relationships and newfound confidence; and greater overall well-being and fulfillment.
As someone who is known to thousands as a broadcast journalist and an international TV personality, Kate understands the pressures and demands to be always “on,” perform at a high level and be an exceptional team player. She brings that high-level presence, professionalism, and infectious enthusiasm to each coaching engagement.
Kate recently led and organized the team behind the launch of QVC’s first and only proprietary beauty brand, which made more than four million dollars in sales the first day alone. Known for her incomparable salesmanship, she helps global beauty brands shape their vision, strategy and innovation to inspire the achievement of breakthrough results.
Kate earned her B.A. in communications from Penn State University, where she was an Academic All-American swimmer. She received her master’s degree in broadcast journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. She graduated at the highest level from Columbia University’s executive and organizational coaching program. Kate is also a certified International Coaching Federation coach (ACC) and a licensed NBI consultant.
Kate is the author of, The Full Spirit Workout: A 10-Step System to Shed Your Self-Doubt, Strengthen Your Spiritual Core, and Create a Fun & Fulfilling Life, which helps readers excel at the game of life with research-backed strategies (New World Library, April 27th, 2021).
Passionate about mindfulness practices for both brain and body health, Kate is a meditation teacher and course creator for Insight Timer, the world’s number-one ranked free meditation app.
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Read the full transcript here:
Speaker 1 (00:01):
Hi, Kate, welcome to the podcast. I'm really excited to have you here. Thank
Speaker 2 (00:06):
You so much for having me. It's my joy to be here. And now,
Speaker 1 (00:08):
As I said, in your bio, you are the author of the full spirit workout. And we will talk about the book in a little bit, but what I'd love to talk about first? Well, a couple of things. So one I, one thing I'm actually quite curious about, I noticed on your website that one of the coaching programs you went through was the Columbia three CP program. And I know a lot of listeners are always wondering what, what is a coaching program? How can I get into that? So can you talk just briefly about that before we get going? Just so listeners have a better idea of where you're coming from? Sure.
Speaker 2 (00:48):
So it was a very, very rigorous intense program. It was about a year, a little over a year, and it was, it was deeper and harder than master's degrees. And I had colleagues who went to Columbia business school. They said it was harder than that. I mean, it was really intense and hardcore, but it was such thorough training. And we learned whole person coaching techniques and neuroscience and positive psychology. And it was just so much peer coaching and, and really going through a really detailed process and going through the guiding principles of coaching and going through just so many programs and processes that they had developed. And that main man named Terry [inaudible], who started the program, who is a genius. So I was just working alongside so many top notch people and minds, and the faculty was incredible and, you know, coaching right now is I feel like everyone in their mother is calling themselves a coach.
Speaker 2 (01:48):
And it, it, it kind of disheartens me a bit because it is a serious role where you're holding someone's well-being and in your hands. And it needs to be, I think, a bit more regulated and taken a bit more seriously. And that's why I chose this program. And I wanted to have this knowledge and, and taking the profession very seriously and not to sound like a total nerd, but I also loved that they required us to write a massive research paper that was almost like writing a thesis and, and really dive into the art and the practice of coaching. That's
Speaker 1 (02:19):
Amazing. I have to, I didn't think that it was going to be that rigorous year because oftentimes I hear, you know, kind of coaching programs might be a couple of months, three or four months. So that is much, much more than I thought. It sounds incredible.
Speaker 2 (02:33):
It was, was probably the best investment I've ever done. And I, I have gotten another graduate degree at Northwestern years ago and journalism, and I was about to say, I love that program. I liked it. It was it, that was another superintendent. Was it a year intensive program that I took an accelerated program and nearly killed me. It was, it was so much work. So between undergrad and grad and then this program, the Columbia was I think my favorite and just rewarding and just to be able to help people and an impactful way. And so much of it is, is, is underneath the surface level though, you know, it's listening to what people aren't saying and, and really reading and feeling body language and just opening up this space and container for people to come to their own conclusions. I think that's another misconception about coaching, coaching.
Speaker 2 (03:22):
Isn't consulting. It's not therapy, it's not problem solving. You know, when I first got into coaching, that's what I thought it was like, if you were my client and you came to me for example, and said, I want to make more money. I thought it was my job to come up with this business plan or to come up with the solutions. But really it's, we're focusing on the client's agenda and you have all the answers. It's my job to ask the questions that will make you reflect so deeply questions. You've never been asked before to take you into the depths of yourself where you actually have the answers. And of course, I can say some things I can ask for permission to add here and there, but really it's about bringing out your own wisdom. That is way more powerful than anything I could say to you or tell you to do. Does that mean makes sense?
Speaker 1 (04:08):
Yes, absolutely. And, and I thank you for that because I agree the word coaches all over the place these days. And I think that was a really succinct way of saying, Hey, this is what coaching is, and this is how I learned how to be a good coach. And I think that that makes a big difference.
Speaker 2 (04:29):
And it, it really is a partnership. I like to say, I'm your thought partner and, and we are co-creating together. And it does become about that, that container. So, you know, I, everyone who's in the field obviously wants to help someone. I just invite and encourage people, whatever your field is. And you know this from your profession too. I think this, I come from a family of doctors. So I come from a family where you go to school for years and years and years, and you have to have the medical school and the fellowship and the residency and all the things before you can, no one can just call themselves a doctor on Instagram, you know, or a physician. And so I see, I see I've seen what my brother has gone through, for example. So I think I wanted to, I want it to be there and, and, and have longevity and just the type of people that I wanted to coach who quite frankly, are not going to put up with any nonsense, know the high achievers are professional athletes.
Speaker 2 (05:23):
They expect you to come in and be on top of your game. And that takes training. And that takes research. And that takes working on, on yourself. And then as I like to say, you have to fine tune your instrument before you can play it for the world. And there's no escaping that. And you know, when you're in the midst of the hard work and you're paying a lot of money to work really hard, and you see people around you who have no credentials and are making 50 K whatever on Instagram to sell something, that's when you have to just remember to stay in your own lane, think about the impact that you want to make and the work that you're here to do, because it wouldn't be tempting. I can see why people like I would never go back to school or I would never pay money or do some intensive program. That's too much work, but I just, I just have to ask what kind of impact do you want to make? And I can even feel some eyes rolling or, you know, a lot of people, I think don't want to hear what I'm saying, but for me, this is, was the right decision.
Speaker 1 (06:21):
Yeah. Well, I think I can say with confidence that I feel like my audience does want to hear what you're saying, because you know, as physical therapists who go to school for seven years,
Speaker 2 (06:31):
You know, my mom's a PT, so I
Speaker 3 (06:33):
Love you already. Yes. Yeah.
Speaker 2 (06:36):
So I, I, I, okay, so your audience gets it because I, you do a lot of the Instagram crowd. They, and I'm not saying that that's your audience, but they kind of think I see it, that culture thinks the opposite. And it is kind of frustrating because same with writing a book, for example, I think so many people see the end result, whatever it is, and they just want that. But what they don't see is all the work that we have put into it. And this, this reminds me of even a story that just came to mind that comes to me often, which is interesting because it literally happened 20 years ago. But in 2001 country singer Shelby, Lynne won best new artist. And when she accepted her award, this is the only acceptance speech I have ever remembered at the Grammys ever 20 years ago. And she was gracious. And she said, thank you. But also kind of mocked the award and said, best new artist. It only took me 13 years and six albums to get here. I just thought, yeah, because people think you just show up and no, you have to put in the work. And I don't know why people aren't wanting to hear this or understand this. And so all everyone listening who has been through your seven year program, I honor you, and you will have a much greater impact and you will have the longevity. And, and if I was your patient, I would feel so held in your care. So thank you.
Speaker 1 (08:05):
Yeah. Yeah. That's great. And you know, I, as I mentioned, I said, I could say with good confidence that my audience would agree with you and that this is a nice segue to talk about. One of the things that that you coach and that's confidence. So what are the five PS, the letter P just for people know of confidence?
Speaker 2 (08:28):
Sure. So it's presence, patience, purpose, preparation, and practice, because I love you and your audience. I'll give you two bonus piece. And that is pause and person as in be a person, and I'm happy to quickly go through them. And it's something that we can all discuss later, even offline or online somewhere, but presence. So presence obviously is being fully present where you are with whomever you're with, even if it's just yourself. So the phones and the TV and all of it is off. And you are just there in the moment, focusing on your breath, focusing on the task at hand right now, I am locked into you. Nothing else. There's a million other things that could be going on, but being present. And then with that comes, bringing your presence. So showing up like, you mean it. So many people tell me, oh, I'm not getting a school.
Speaker 2 (09:25):
This isn't happening. And I'm like, I don't think that you care, you're showing up. Like you don't care. So I think bringing that energy, bringing that enthusiasm to everyone, you meet and to everything that you do, patients, oh man, I think of that 38 special song that says, hold on loosely. So I think sometimes we're all guilty of gripping. So tightly to our goals, we want this relationship. We want this job. We want this money. And when we grip so tight, we actually repel it. So putting in your work, taking those action steps and then taking your hands off the wheel and gently leaning into trust and detaching from those outcomes, releasing expectations and Shelby Lynn, the story I just told what a perfect example of patience, right? And trusting in the process and confidence stems from the words to trust, to do something with trust, which is great because you can build on that.
Speaker 2 (10:18):
And it's something that comes from within purpose is your why. So it's so important to have a strong why that will keep you going. Even when it's hard, when you want to throw in the towel, when it doesn't feel like anything is working out for you, that's what this book. I had a really strong why. My two friends who are no longer with us and they kept me going when it was really challenging. And I think a lot of people, this is where they get tripped up because I'll ask them, well, why do you want to do this? And they often don't have a good answer. Or the answer is impressing other people or just money is the only goal. Things like that. It's like the people who say, well, I want to be a parent because when I post pictures of my kids on Instagram, I'll get more likes.
Speaker 2 (11:01):
Ooh, probably going to hate parenthood. And your kid's probably not going to go over well. Yeah, yeah. Not a good reason to be a parent. Yeah. So I, I, yeah. And, and if you are a parent, you are my personal hero. I don't know how parents get anything done. I, I bow down to them every day. Preparation of course is about, you know, building habits that lead to better behaviors that lead to better results. So that boosts your confidence when you're prepared and practice, there's this misconception that we don't have to put in that much work. It's like what I was saying about school and the credentials. And I think of Tom Brady, because we're the same age. We're both big 10 athletes. He's still winning super bowls. And my knees hurt when I go to Pilates. So Tom Brady are an inspiration, but Tom Brady is the best because he practices harder than anyone.
Speaker 2 (11:52):
You know, people think, oh, well, if you need that much work, you must be the worst. No, you, you P he practices that much. Cause he's the best, not the worst and your talent merits investment. So practice pause is really what the, this inner fitness program is about. It's, it's taking that moment before you respond to the upsetting email, before you tell the jerk what a jerk they are. It's taking that moment of mindfulness and thinking, okay, I'm really upset, but I'm willing not to be. And who do I want to be instead? So it is about non-reactivity again, I got to practice this a lot. And, and the last one is, is, I mean, they're all my favorites, but this one makes me laugh, be a person. My speaking coach, Eduardo, plusser always says this to me because I'm someone who has struggled with perfectionism and performance and obsession with performance.
Speaker 2 (12:39):
And he always says, just be a freaking person. And this is really about our humanity and just leaning into not just the person we present to the world who has put together, but that really messy person behind the scenes, just trying to keep it all together. He or she is awesome to let let's embrace that and just be a person. Cause that's where that's, what's really beautiful about us, right? Our humanity, and just being willing to show up, even when it's hard. And, and that's, that's another, a key building block of confidence is, is our willingness to show up and not be great first or ever that's to be in dance class, never going to be a great dancer, but you show up, I build confidence because I dare to put myself out there and not be good and a room full of dancers and feel like a complete, but it's fun. And, and it's, it's that one activity I can do where I it's such a rebellion against my inner perfectionist. Cause there's, there's never going to be a perfect performance dance class. It's, I'm just there to show up and, and, and move around and, and release some energy.
Speaker 1 (13:40):
Absolutely. You're speaking my language. Totally. I, cause I took, when I was at Equinox, I always took this dance class. It was like six 30 in the evenings. And it was with this guy, Johnny, and some days it would be like jazz hands. Some days it was hip hop. So I'm not a dancer, but I would show up and I would have the best time. And I mean, there are women in there who were clearly dancers in their early years. I mean, they're like in their sixties and seventies and they're splitting and high kicking and doing all this stuff. And I'm like, I can't even touch my toes when I'm sitting. And these women have like, their, their stomachs are on the ground, you know, but it's true. You go out there, you put yourself out there. And the more I did it, the more confident I was as a dancer, not that I'm a good dancer, but I was confident in what I was doing because I practiced. And the more I did it, the more, and I also think the more I really enjoyed it.
Speaker 2 (14:34):
Yeah. And, and those moments, then we become a dancer and I had this woman in class who was a gorgeous dancer and I had to perform in front of these people. Let me restate that. I got to be a person in front of these people. And they, they wrote the one woman wrote me a note after class. And she said, you are a dancer. And I thought, yeah, I am. Cause I'm here dancing. It's not about being ushered J lo or you know, whomever it's I'm yeah. I'm here dancing and I'm a dancer.
Speaker 1 (15:04):
Yeah. That's great. And you know, and it brings me to that concept of perfectionism and performance, which a lot of high achievers have they have perfectionism itis or performance itis. I don't know that those are words, but you know what I'm talking about. So what do you say to those high achievers where it's all about high performance and perfection? Yeah. I first
Speaker 2 (15:32):
Would want to work with people like I had to do with myself and just ask, where does this come from? Where does this thought process come, where you even think you have to perform or achieve at this high level to even be worthy or valuable or loved. And it really is about feeling safe in the world and not feeling so alone. And that's the story I tell in the book about being the four year old at the swim club and being in swim lessons that I didn't really like and overhearing my instructor, tell my mom that I'm not a very good swimmer and how heartbreaking it is for me as an adult to think of my sweet little innocent. Four-Year-Old thinking like, oh gosh, I, I love my mom and dad. I want them to be proud of me. I don't want them to have a daughter who's a bad swimmer, especially since they're so athletic and then going on to break every record at that swim club, because my mentality was I have to perform at a really high level to be safe and not just when the love of mom and dad, but I guess I need to impress strangers.
Speaker 2 (16:34):
So they say nice things about me and I can feel worthy. And, and then people will love me because I'm good at something. And they can be wowed by my quote unquote performance and what a trap that is. So I think it is about taking ourselves back to where we even come up with this mentality. But I think when we are in that place of obsession, it's like I said, you have to go back to being a person, but you have to also go back to why do I even, why am I even doing this? And, and I think when you are more clear, even I have a client who's extremely wealthy, extremely high achieving, and he's coming to that point in his life. He's about to turn 50 where he thinks, what does all of this even mean? What is my cause? He had a health scare and what if I pass away, what is my legacy that I made a bunch of money?
Speaker 2 (17:22):
And, and so he's starting to think of what impact he wants to make, or, you know, like many of us, we experience external success, but then we feel unfulfilled on the inside or insecure full of self doubt, full of anxiety. And so I think it's just coming back to what, what really matters to us and who are we underneath all of the titles and the labels and the achievements and the accolades and awards, all of that stuff, and really clear on that. And then your desire to be perfectionistic or to always have to perform at a high level goes away because you know who you are without all this stuff. And then spoiler alerts, you actually end up achieving more and less time and attracting the people, experiences relationships, because you've become the person who just gets to have that or gets to be that rather than striving and forcing and controlling. Does that make sense?
Speaker 1 (18:19):
It does. Yeah, absolutely. And it has me going back in my head, like, is that why I did that? Is that why I did this? Was it for, you know, to have your parents feel proud of you or to have people tell you, wow, that was so good. Or for, yeah. I need to do a lot of inner work thinking about this right now,
Speaker 2 (18:43):
But what a great practice that I invite you and everyone listening to do is go back and think of that limiting thought or think of, wow, I am so anxious and it's because I feel like I have to impress people or earn someone's approval and try to go back. And it's always in childhood something. And it's something that we don't even think of. I hadn't thought of that swim club moment until I was doing heavy thought around this book when I was writing it and doing a lot of meditation and reflection, and that story came I'm like, where did this come from? This obsession and how crazy right. And that we hold onto, and then also inviting everyone to, instead of the criticisms or the society that tells us how we don't add up ever, especially as women. So really think of the compliments or think about your strengths and, and, and making that the root of your core belief system instead of all that other crap. Yeah.
Speaker 1 (19:36):
Oh, it's so good. And now let's talk a little bit more about the book. So the full spirit workout. So what is, what was your why for writing the book, talking about purpose, right? So let's tie it together. What is your why?
Speaker 2 (19:52):
Oh, you're so good. My, why is salmon Roth? There are two dear friends. They were both two of the loves of my life and they both decided to leave us. They both took their own lives almost a year to the day of one another. So I lost both of them in one year. And this project, I call it a divine assignment. It's the most challenging life assignment I've ever had, certainly the most rewarding, but I did it for them. And for everyone who has felt like them in a place of hopelessness or despair who didn't have the tools who didn't feel confident or secure or safe to reach out for help, who thought they had to do it all on their own or hold it all in. And the, the name of being a man or looking cool to the outside or not wanting to show their dark side for lack of better term, and also wanting it to be a celebration of life for everyone.
Speaker 2 (20:47):
And, you know, I talk about society and, and it's really sick right now. And it bombards us with all these messages about how we aren't enough and it doesn't give us the tools to, to be healthy and happy. It's just, it's the constant negative. And so, you know, I was a competitive swimmer for 17 years and knew how hard I had to train my physical muscles to compete at a high level. And after losing them and finding myself at the Dwayne Reed on eighth avenue and 34th street contemplating taking a bottle of pills, I knew that my life depended on answering this wake up call and shifting the way that I was choosing to live my life. Like everybody, I will say everybody is guilty of placing their worth outside of themselves. Some may not even realize it, but that's why they have the emptiness feeling on the inside at times.
Speaker 2 (21:38):
And I really just dove into so much studying and research and spiritual tools and practices and, and, and went back to school and just really wanted to put a program together for everybody. You know, someone said, who is this book for? And I said, everyone who can read, because we all need these practices, just like, we all need to exercise our physical bodies to stay healthy and fit and strong. And it's not about looking hot in a bikini. It's about being able to navigate the world and do everything that you, you want to do and can do whether it's travel or get out of bed. This isn't about a six pack abs, but this, my program will give you a six pack spirit, and that will lead to health on every level. So I just encourage everyone, even if it's five minutes a day to do some of these practices, I wrote this book and a fun is in the subtitle.
Speaker 2 (22:27):
So this is fun. It's, it's a workout you're going to actually want to do and return to. And, and I return to these practices daily because it's just like exercise or sleep or eating. It's, it's part of our health that we need to tune into every day and, and give ourselves this gift. And if I've learned anything this past year, my wellbeing comes first, no matter what, I'm not willing to go to a dark place. Again, I, I'm not, I'm not doing it. And I, I just, I see so much struggle around me. I it's been such a challenging year for everyone. That life was challenging way before COVID and then everything else we dealt with, especially in this country this past year, it has just been trauma and chaos after trauma and chaos. And so this is really within these pages, just such a place to be in self discovery and be in self-growth and really get acquainted with yourself again and feel really good. And it's all there for you. So let's go, I'll just do it.
Speaker 1 (23:28):
Yeah. And I loved it. The thing that I really picked up on, you said, you know, you want to be able to like you work and you exercise and you move to help kind of expand your world. Right. I mean, as physical therapist, I mean, I have patients who are in pain, osteoarthritis of their knees, so they can't walk. They can't, they can't do the things they want to do. And they, and, and she said to me, just today, she's like years ago, my world was, I could do anything. Now it's just narrowed so much because I don't have the physical capacity to do the things that I used to do. And, you know, you hear that. And it's, it's so upsetting to hear, you know, and she has some other systemic issues going on as well. But so when you just said, you know, you want to kind of work on your inner spirit and your inner self, just like you would your, your health on the outside. Because again, you don't want to narrow your, your mind and your spirit, like you would, if you didn't exercise and move on the outside. That just so
Speaker 2 (24:37):
Brilliant what you just said. Yeah.
Speaker 1 (24:40):
It just really, when you said that, I said, oh gosh. And we see it all the time. And people from a physical standpoint, and we don't often give ourselves the grace to, to expand our inner selves as well. So I,
Speaker 2 (24:54):
I love it. That's such a great analogy. And that's why I did, because there is such an obsession with the physical and this world, right? What we physically look like face hair, skin, body, all of that. And the obsession with, with working out where it goes too far, the other direction where it becomes unhealthy and that's the whole diet culture and all of it, but that's such a perfect example. And people see that like, oh, I break my leg. I can't do X, Y, and Z, but so many people are injured on the inside because, or they're there, you have the spiritual flag, the emotional flag from just not working out are inside. And it's the same. It has the same limiting effect. And so when, when you do get fit and strong and resilient and optimistic on the inside, really the world is yours.
Speaker 2 (25:37):
And you, you, like I said, you attract the opportunities, experiences. You become the person who can actually attract and achieve your cherish goals and live the life you say you want to live. And I think a lot of us have forgotten that we have access to this and that we are powerful. And so I'm just gently reminding everybody to tune back into that and to live from that place so that you don't feel limited. So you don't feel like you have a broken leg or like, oh my gosh, I can't physically even exercise. I feel miserable. We're doing that to ourselves, with our minds and with our hearts and our spirits. We just, we don't even realize it. Yeah.
Speaker 1 (26:15):
And you know, I was going to just ask you what is the book's core message, but I think you just said it, is there anything you'd like to add?
Speaker 2 (26:22):
I mean, I, it is, I, I get very, almost like dramatic and passionate about it. Just reminding people who they are and, and being comfortable with who you are right now in this moment exactly where you are and reminding yourself of, of your strength and your inherent worth, and that you can do whatever you decide is important. I think people think, oh, this is just as good as it gets, or I can't have that. Or even had some woman say to me, well, you're beautiful. You can get anything you want. And I think, wow, are we still doing that to each other where we're, we're judging or policing or thinking that it's about what we look like? Or you can do everything because you have a nice house and, and diminishing each other and, and everyone is struggling with something. And, and I wish people would, would talk about it more and tell the truth.
Speaker 2 (27:09):
And even if you don't tell someone else to tell yourself the truth and sit, I call it my sit and stare time where it's, non-negotiable at least five minutes a day. And I sit and stare out the window or stare ahead. And I talk to myself like I would a small child and say, how are you doing, what do you need? What's working. And it has saved me so many times. And, you know, I can hear some people saying, well, it must be nicer. I don't have time to do that. Just like people say about meditation. And I say, I don't have time to be angry. I don't have time to treat people badly because I'm exhausted and overwhelmed. And at the end of my rope, I don't have time to be miserable. I don't have time to be sick. I don't have time to be rushed to the hospital and pay some crazy bill or whatever, you know? So I think it's just asking yourself, what do you really want? And who are you? And, and be willing to show up and just keep going and take little baby steps here and know that you're going to get stronger and stronger. And then you will crave this. You'll crave the sit and stare. You'll crave these journaling exercises and this time to really get to the core of what's happening inside of you.
Speaker 1 (28:25):
Excellent. I love it. Thank you so much. So again, everyone, the book is the full spirit workout. And now Kate, where can people find, you find the book, et cetera, et cetera. So
Speaker 2 (28:38):
You can find the email@example.com. And that will also link to my website, which is Kate ekman.tv, E C K M a N and Quebec men, everywhere on social. I'd love to connect with you. I love meeting people who are ready to kind of take on this journey and have fun with it. And we can all support one another. I really believe in community and collaboration over competition. And we're all in this together. So let's go,
Speaker 3 (29:03):
As you said, let's do it. Let's just do it. Yeah. Excellent. I love
Speaker 1 (29:07):
It. Thank you so much. One last question that I ask everyone, and that's knowing where you are now in your life and in your career. What advice would you give to your younger self?
Speaker 2 (29:17):
Ooh, hold on baby. It's it's all coming. It's all happening. Keep going, keep trusting. You're doing a great job. I'm so proud of you. Just go relax and have some fun. You're doing great.
Speaker 1 (29:32):
I love it. I love how you said. I'm so proud of you. That's so nice. Such a good exercise to do. I love it. Kate, thank you so much for coming on for your book and sharing all this great advice. And I just thank you very much. Thank
Speaker 2 (29:47):
You. You're the best. I appreciate you having me
Speaker 1 (29:49):
Pleasure and everyone. Thanks so much for listening. Have a great couple of days and stay healthy, wealthy and smart.
In this episode, Optimal Self Coach, Jeremy Herider, talks about how he discovered, and strives toward, the Optimal Self.
Today, Jeremy talks about “the Art of Becoming the Best Version of You”, why it’s important to you but more important to those who look up to you, and why we should prioritise #GenerationalHabits over #GenerationalWealth.
Hear about the moment he started re-evaluating his identity, his three most important values, and his advice to his younger self, all on today’s episode of The Healthy, Wealthy & Smart Podcast.
More about Jeremy Herider
Meet Jeremy Herider, life coach, business consultant, professional athlete, podcaster… the list goes on. How can one person even have so many titles? That’s just what you get when you’re living as your Optimal Self. As a pioneer in two professional sports, Jeremy has spent a lifetime building the elite habits necessary to thrive not only in pro sports, but in every other venture that he’s been a part of.
Originally from Lancaster, California, Jeremy found his strength as an athlete from an early age. He was a three-sport letterman in high school and an MVP in baseball. He graduated from Gonzaga University where he was an All-Pac10 Infielder. His pro baseball career took off not long after.
But his drive didn’t stop there and neither did his list of accomplishments.
Jeremy was the first contracted player with the Diamondbacks to get a hit in the history of the organization. He was later drafted by the LA Reign, officially making him a two-sport professional athlete. More recently, Jeremy has been named a CrossFit Champion, taking home 1st Place for the Deadlift/Box Jump event. Of course, now Jeremy has shifted his focus once again as a productivity consultant for Fortune 500 companies, private business coach, and motivational speaker.
Jeremy’s Optimal Self Coaching program and podcast boil down this lifetime of achievement into tangible, attainable habits that anyone can adopt for success. No success story, including Jeremy’s, happens by accident. Begin yours with Optimal Self.
Motivation, Identity, Improvement, Habits, Wealth, Health, Smart, Success, Achievement, Integrity, Character, Generational Habits, Priorities, Clarity, Empathy, Empowerment, Choices,
To learn more, follow Jeremy at:
YouTube: Optimal Self
Optimal Self: Optimal Self linktree
Subscribe to Healthy, Wealthy & Smart:
Read the Full Transcript:
Speaker 1 (00:01):
Hey, Jeremy, welcome to the podcast. So happy to have you on today. Well,
Speaker 2 (00:05):
Thank you. It's so happy to be here. I know
Speaker 1 (00:08):
A fellow podcast host, we'll get into your podcast later on in the, in the episode, but I always love to have a fellow podcast host on for a number of reasons. Number one, being good sound.
Speaker 2 (00:21):
That's so important. That's so true.
Speaker 1 (00:24):
So important. All right. Now, before we get into the meat of the interview, what I'd love for you to share with the listeners is how your background of being a professional athlete baseball, CrossFit I can Zaga, right? Almost they almost did it. Oh my gosh. Are you just dying?
Speaker 2 (00:53):
Was except for that game, we didn't really almost get it. We really got crushed by Baylor. So hats off to Baylor. They, they, they did not miss a beat and they crushed us about halftime. I was, I was already turning the channel a little
Speaker 1 (01:06):
Defeated, but close. Yeah, absolutely. Absolutely. Okay. So enough NCAA talk. So let's talk about how your life as a professional athlete kind of shaped your views on your life now and kind of what you're doing now.
Speaker 2 (01:25):
But I love that question cause it can, it's, it's so many different things in, in regards to, you know, you see what most people see is the end result, right? Is, is you running on a field? In my case, it was baseball. They, they see the end result. They see you on a field with the stadiums packed and the lights are on, you know, and, and, and it's, it's incredible, right? Cause we all watch it. If those of you that are out there that are, that are sports fans, you know, it's just, but we get to see the end result. What we don't see is the work and we don't see the behind the scenes. We don't see it. So as far as is shaping me today is it's still the same way. What I mean by that is this, is that what I, what I loved about athletics was truly not the game.
Speaker 2 (02:14):
Although the game is the icing on the cake. I enjoyed practice. I, I love getting up and going to practice. My mom tells a story, you know, cause you know, with my girls, I have two girls in, you know, mine were like, they didn't want to go to practice. They were like dad, really again. And my mom tells the story that she's like, no, you'd get done with school and you'd walk in the door and already being your uniform ready to go. And you're like, no, I know you got like two hours and I'm like, no, no, no, let's, let's go now just drop me off. She said, you know, she'd be pulling up and I'd be, the door would be open before the car was even stopped and I'm running. So it's, that's kind of the thing that's been ingrained in me since a kid.
Speaker 2 (02:57):
And, and so I enjoy that work and, and moving into your adult life. And when that, you know, when that side of my life ended moving into other aspects, which now I'm in a real estate and in starting optimal self and doing what we do now, you know, I just love the work it's so it's, it shaped me the same way. Is that what I know to be true? Is that the true success that actually people see? Cause a lot of times, you know, people see that success and I, let me be clear. I didn't, I didn't reach my goal. My goal was to be a 20 year major leaguer and a hall of Famer. And you know what I mean? And, and be, you know, Canton, Ohio and be putting on that hall of fame jacket and giving a speech and B I was nowhere near that.
Speaker 2 (03:43):
I didn't get close to that. You know? So my w but when most people see the accolades and they go, oh, wow, you've done this. They, they think of success, right? So again, that is kind of the outsider looking in, but what they, what they never see is, is the work that's put in and that's what you have to love. And, and that happens today is whatever people think is fine. They what they see and what we see of others, that little tip of the iceberg, that's, it's poking out, right? You always see these memes and these things on the internet. It's, what's underneath that water. Well, what I learned is if I'm going to be successful or have success in any endeavor in my adult life, it's going to come from what happens when no one's watching it. What happens when they're not looking with those, those sessions in those days, in those moments. And so that's, that's probably what I learned the most. And it's, it's what I've brought into my adult life from, you know, into these other businesses, from being an athlete.
Speaker 1 (04:44):
Yeah. And that makes perfect sense. And, you know, I liked practicing too. I like the games. I like the practice. I like the teammates, the camaraderie, that feeling of being on a team is always so great. And that teaches you a lot as well. Just being part of a team and being responsible to someone else for someone else and, and being held accountable as well. Yeah, definitely.
Speaker 2 (05:07):
I, yeah, you're, you're spot on. Which is interesting because going from, you know, being a baseball player again with 25 guys on the team, nine guys on the field at a time, right. Is, is you are, you're, you're a hundred percent responsible for, for everybody around you. And, but here's what I'll say. And it kind of goes into optimal self as well. Cause it's the optimal self is the art of becoming the best version of you is that one of the things that I think I failed at in those days was not is, is focusing on, on wanting to be the best at my position or in that league or whatever. And what I should have been doing, what I've learned over time is just truly be the best version of me. Like that guy is still, could be the best, but, but if I'm just stopping and always, then I lose sight of just truly who I am and what I can do.
Speaker 2 (06:03):
And so, and what you're saying is, is very true because going from baseball to where I was accountable to all those guys and coaches and, and, and, and the team, and then when I got into CrossFit and you're all by yourself, you're all by your lonesome, in that a lot of lonely nights at the gym, lonely mornings at the gym training, because nobody has that same goal, right. To, to be a champion or to want those things that a lot of guys would come to the gym and train with me, but I would have to literally put a different guy in at each time, like, oh, we're running, I'll get the good guy, the guy that likes to run, oh, we're lifting the B find the guy that likes to lift. Oh, we're, you know, and so you put, you, you put in all the different people. Cause there was nobody that was just going to be like, yeah, Jeremy, I can't wait to get up at 6:00 AM with, you know, Jeremy, I can't wait to be there until nine o'clock at night with you. So again, I, I, I love what you're saying. Cause that's true. And the truth of life is you do have to have some accountability and the team would definitely show that. So yeah.
Speaker 1 (07:03):
You're spot on. Yeah. And now you mentioned sort of the art of becoming the best version of you. So mentioned it a little bit. Nice segue into why is that important to you?
Speaker 2 (07:16):
So it goes back to that same timeframe is when, when baseball ended and for most people in, in an athletic endeavor, it doesn't end on your terms. Very often, there are very few people that, that get that right. They get to
Speaker 1 (07:32):
Be Derek Jeter,
Speaker 2 (07:36):
Jeter, Tom Brady's like very viewed people are, are those, those people, right? That get to win the world championships, get to be the MVPs and then get to say CNR when they, when they choose. So, you know, most are on, on, on my side where they, they tell you to you're you come to the stadium and the uniform is not in the locker room anymore. We're not renewing your contract. And thanks for your service. It's no. So, but I mean, that app is everybody. It's, it's nothing, but what I learned and I went through a time and I'll be honest. I didn't know it was this right. Is that I was in a form of depression if you will. Is that because I didn't have an identity, my identity was attached to a hundred percent to baseball. Like I was a baseball player and I knew I was in trouble.
Speaker 2 (08:28):
It wasn't that the game was over. I was okay with that. Honestly, like I knew that there was more things I had, you know, two little, little girls in those days, they were tiny, right? Like dad got to be around and we got to go to the park and I got to, I get to do stuff that I, that I hadn't been able to do really. So that was wonderful. But what I was, what I failed to, to start to understand was how my identity, how I had attached myself to being a baseball player. And I was in the store one day and I ran into a gentleman that, that knew me. And he was like, yeah, Hey Jeremy. And all his Isley comes over and he's like, how are you? And I say, great, man, how are you? One of those guys that you see their face, you know, but you don't remember their name.
Speaker 2 (09:09):
Right. And he's like, can you stay here for a second? I want my son. So he calls over. Then here comes his little dude rolling up seven or eight years old. And he goes, Hey, you know, Mason, this is Jeremy, this is the baseball player I was telling you about. And I hadn't played baseball in a few years. Like I hadn't got a paycheck or been on a baseball field in a few years. And it crushed me inside. It was that moment that I realized like, oh shoot, something's wrong. And so I talked to him and we talked baseball and you know, gave him some pointers and you know, you can do this kind of thing. Right. I was the little guy and, you know, we, he was like, he's so small. And I was like, you know, so it was, I, I didn't grow till after.
Speaker 2 (09:53):
Yeah. And we talked a few stories, but when I left there that day, I knew, I was like, okay, I got it. I gotta get this together. Because that, that it shouldn't feel that way. Right. And I knew at that moment that, because he called me a baseball player and I knew I was not a baseball player anymore. Right. Or in the side of being a physical, getting on the field, practicing, playing, getting a paycheck from the Mino, a major league organization. So that's when I knew, I was like, okay, we got it. We got to work on some stuff. We gotta figure some stuff out. Cause th and again, now it becomes getting away from putting my identity to anything more than just being me. And who is that guy? How does he show up in the world? How does, what is the, what are those fulfilling things that happened that I can do on a daily basis that beat me up.
Speaker 2 (10:45):
They, they get me excited. So that, and again, when somebody says, Hey, you're not a baseball player. Cause I almost stopped them. Like I almost had to say, Hey, no, I'm not what to mean. It was just like, oh my goodness. And here's this little boy, you know, and you know, try to keep it together on the outside because on the inside I was just dying. But I hope people, what I hope people get out of that is understanding that don't get your identity caught up in things that are out of your control. It was out of my control of being a baseball player. Somebody had to give me a chance. Somebody had to say, yeah, this is this guy's good enough. Here's a contract. We'll take a chance on you. Somebody has to say, Hey, here's a scholarship. We'd love for you to come to play at our university. It's it's, it's not totally in your hands. The practice, the work, the time, the energy, the effort, the desire. Yeah. That's stuff that I can control. That's the stuff I got to work on, but not tying my identity to the actual act. Right. It's what I do. It's not who I am. And that was a big turning point for me.
Speaker 1 (11:48):
And what advice do you have for someone who maybe is at this crossroads of, you know, maybe they lost their job. Maybe they are came out of a relationship, a long-term relationship where that was part of their identity. So what advice do you have for someone or maybe an exercise or something that you did that helped you pivot that at that moment? Love
Speaker 2 (12:13):
It. That's such a great question. Perfect. So, you know, there's a lot of different ways to look at this and what I, what I go back to is, is the clarity piece in the sense that, who am I? And so then it becomes, start answering that question of what do I stand for? What's important to me. Right? And you know, there's so many different catch words and I'm just going to give you mine for people. So when I sat down and said, okay, what, what matters? Well, what matters the most to me is, is integrity. And so that is a pillar of my life. One is integrity. And what integrity means to me is simple. It's do what you say you're going to do. If you're going to meet me here at five 30 Pacific standard time, then I'm going to be there and I'm going to be ready and I'm going to be prepared.
Speaker 2 (13:01):
So, so integrity, just, just living that way. And then the second thing is, is character. And a lot of people associate those two things together, but here's the difference, integrity being, do what you say you're going to do. Well, character is be who you say you are. If you're a dad, then be the dad, right? If you're that, that worker. And I think that character shows up in many ways, especially for people. Like what you're saying right now is, you know, if you, if you had that breakup and it's going tough because, oh my gosh, now who am I without that partner? Or a job or whatever is understanding first, we got to dig inside ourselves. And so, okay. Who, who do you want to be? How do you want to show up in the world? Well, for me, character means be who you say, you're going to be, if you say, you're going to be that, then you be that every step of the way, and that type of clarity will, will, will actually help you make all the decisions in your life.
Speaker 2 (13:55):
And so, and the third one is empathy for me. So I'll just give you my three integrity, character and empathy. And so I've built it around their empathy. Again, to me was I grew up with women. My mom was a single mom, right? Since she only had sisters, right. Nana and Papa pop was there too. But, but my, my grandparents but, but it was a lot of Nana, right? I was, I was, I was the first born. My mom was 16 when I was born. And so that was not something, you know, no, I don't think there's any 16 year olds in the world that are truly ready to be a parent, right. Or a mother at that at that matter. And so would that being said, right? Like I've been around women that I hear, I get these. And I get blessed with two little girls.
Speaker 2 (14:36):
And my job for them was to empower them, to know that they can be and do anything they want in this world that, that the gender was not. And so I say this in this regard is that empathy means I need to put myself there. I need to listen to them. I don't have to agree. Right. Even if it was, you know, you can go down, whatever. I don't have to agree with you. We don't have to believe the same things, but it means a lot. If I can, if I can listen in and at least try to understand your point or your view on something, it doesn't mean I have to agree, but it does make it a lot easier. And if that, if that's reciprocal, man, how powerful that can be. So I've always wanted those girls to, to understand that. And to know that yes, you can be what you want to be, but at the same time, not at the expense of someone else, you don't have to put somebody else down for you to be for you to be great.
Speaker 2 (15:26):
You don't, you can just be great. It's okay. You can be unapologetically. Great. And, and the thing is, is, I mean, as we grow, so to go back to kind of summarize. So in what you asked was how could somebody would just start with yourself, start with who you are. What, what are those words that you have? And I mean, there's so many different things out there. I mean, I'd love to, free to use ours. We have, when you could sign in and get in, put your email address, we send it to you for free. It's an identity creator. It has steps in it and all that kind of stuff. But even so again, it's free, but if you don't want ours, you can, I can Google. There's so many great things out there that can help people. You know, I'm not, I'm not the one to say, this is the only way there's not, there's so many different ways, but I know this.
Speaker 2 (16:16):
If you're lacking motivation today, it's not, normally it's not lacking motivation, lacking clarity, because when you get clear on something, motivation, jumps off out of you, it will jump out of your skin. Right. And most people can identify with that when they go, oh yeah. When I knew right where I wanted to, where I was going, man, did I take them steps to get there? Right. So, so I think taking it back in that sense for me was all right, who am I? You're not a baseball player anymore. Who are you? What do you want to stand for? How do you want to show up in the world? And let's go be that guy. And again, it also allows you to make incredible choices because the moment you have that clarity, it's like, wait, does, is, is this who I am? Nope. Okay. That doesn't go in my mouth.
Speaker 2 (17:07):
Okay. That's not what I do. Okay. That's not what I, I choose to. You know what I mean? Like you can literally go from every single piece of how you move, what you eat, the people you hang around, you can start to see. And what's really crazy. Karen is this is that you start to implement those things in your life. You start to be it not no other way. Not words on a page, not just talking about it. Yeah. You actually start living it. You start to see the people around, you change all of a sudden other, your, your whole, your identity starts to attract that when you're being that. And it's an amazing with, without even, without even purposely doing it, because what you radiate, what people hear, what people see when, when they say, because again, I'll go back to my life. Like those guys that I was hanging out with, even at the end, right?
Speaker 2 (17:58):
Like it was nothing to go to Monday night football and have, you know, eight or 10 beers on a Monday night and drink a bunch and eat a bunch of wings. It sounds fun. And it's great. But I can tell you this, the moment that, that I, that switch started to happen for me. And I started to pay attention to it. Those weren't the choices that I made anymore because they weren't serving the life that I wanted to live and where I wanted to go. And, and it, and again, it makes things a lot easier for yourself. Cause it's, I call it a hundred or nothing. You either give that thing 100% of you, or don't because 99% won't work because there's always that 1% time that somebody something's going to crack when you leave a crack open, that crack will get used and it will get destroyed and it will be, and it will get bigger. So the more you can give to exactly what you say you are going to give, when you give that a hundred man hundreds easier than 98 or 99, because 98, 99, you haven't really made a full decision yet. And you know, this decision is the, is the key to all of it. Cause the moment you do make that decision, man, how the, how the universe will conspire with you to make it happen.
Speaker 1 (19:08):
Yeah, absolutely. So it sounds like I'm just going to recap quickly that when you're at that sort of crossroads of, of your identity, of, of who you are as a person, you really want to try and get clear on your values, write it down, write down the value, why it's important to you and really like dig deep, you know, it's might be uncomfortable. It might
Speaker 2 (19:34):
Be uncomfortable making that. You're, you're
Speaker 1 (19:37):
Really asking yourself the tough questions. And if you don't like doing this on your own, like you said, there are tools out there. You have a tool, there are tools out there, ask your friends, ask your family. If you have good relationships with said people if not, you can hire someone and they'll help you. But really getting deep and asking those questions. It's the same thing that you would do if you're an entrepreneur and you're trying to figure out your vision of your business, you know, you just want to figure out that vision of yourself as well, and it'll probably help your business. That's a whole, that's a whole other conversation. We'll be here for hours. Now I love when you were kind of talking about what people can do when they're at that crossroads, and you talked about your mom and your grandparents and your children and, and you know, we're talking about generations of a family, right? And so a question I have for you is why generational habits should be taught versus generational wealth. And if you can even explain what you mean by generational wealth, do you mean wealth of money, knowledge, X, et cetera, et cetera. So I'll hand it over to you.
Speaker 2 (20:56):
Yeah. So that's, again, what we see in, in, in at least in our country for sure is, you know, we, you know, that there are families that have, you know, through industrial age, in, in, in all the different times that have handed down, then let's talk w in this case, we're talking money, right. Wealth, right? Whether it be real estate, whether it be, you know, the buildings and things like that, whether it be business, the railroads or the steel or, or whatever that is. And what's, what's, what's incredible is that the majority over time gets, it ends up failing by the third, by the second generation or the third generation. And the reason we say that is the person who built it. They might be handing over the wealth side of things, but they haven't handed over the habits that it took for them to get there.
Speaker 2 (21:50):
And so when you start to get second and third generation away from the actual being that that created it, it starts to dissipate. And so they don't have those same habits, that work habit, that work ethic, that, that mindset that they, that this was built under. So when we talk at optimal self, when we talk about it, we talk about leaving that generation. We start talking about generational habits. And the reason we say that is this is that you're leaving something behind whether you like it or not. You're leaving a legacy, whatever the term is you want to use, you're leaving that now, right now, somewhere, somehow you, because you have interaction with people, whether you have children or not children, you have interaction with people. You're, you're either at a job. Your, you know, if you're in school, right, they're going to know you, somebody, some they're going to be able to describe you and what are they going to describe?
Speaker 2 (22:45):
What are you leaving behind? So what, what we talk about is, and this goes back to what we started this with, is that the only way I can help and I, and I use my family, I use because that's the direct connect, right? My girls, the only way I can help them is by me being a better me. Because again, how many of you out there right now are telling your kids to go make their bed? And they walk by your room and your bed's not made, what are we really telling them? Right? What are we really teaching them? And so when I talk about generational habits, I'm talking about, listen, be the person, right? You've, you've heard Gandhi. You've heard it for years of, of all kinds of Nelson, Amanda, about we have to be the change. Well, well, truly, all you have to do is you can be the best version of you and you will inspire others to do the same.
Speaker 2 (23:35):
What are the habits that you want those children or the people around you to have? What do you want them to learn from you? And if you, if we can at least frame it up that way, then the chances of us living to our own standard are much better. Because sometimes that's what it takes. You know? I mean, our world today is built around social media. Let's be clear, right? It is whatever your view is on it. I don't want to go into my own view because it's really doesn't matter. But there is a bit of it that is corrupting all of us in, in ways myself included. And that's what kind of spins us away from it. So let's get back to saying if, if, because you, we do, I like to tell people I don't care what you think, but I do. Of course I do.
Speaker 2 (24:20):
Like, and I don't mean that I'm going to do something different because of it. If you don't, if I, if I'm living to the best version and you don't like that, then let's have a conversation. Cause, cause I, I, for sure don't want it to hurt somebody, right? That that's, that's not the case, but with generational habits, if we can leave, if we can start to create and be the difference in our own households, that's how we start to create better environments at all times. So we put our kids in better environments. We choose better environments because those environments are, are more conducive to what our habits are. So yeah, we talk about generational wealth as well, because there's nothing greater than that. I mean, if, if my girls can have more than I had, how incredible would that be? That's that's and their kids' kids, right?
Speaker 2 (25:09):
Like, let's talk, let's, let's make it. But at the same time, what I have to be able to help them and what they need to be able to see from me. Not just words on the page or words out of my mouth, but what they need to be able to see from me is how I live. How do I personally get up every day? What is important? What, you know, my hydration, how we eat, the things that we do, the things that we consume, right? Consumption what, not just what we eat, but what we hear, what we watch, what we say, because those words are very powerful. Every word that we, we say, we say to ourselves, you're your cells are eavesdropping that they're paying attention. That subconscious is paying deep attention to that. So again, generational habits or what are you leaving behind? What habits in art.
Speaker 2 (26:01):
And again, because you asked that question and you're like, oh man, as I've done it for myself, I'm like, oh my God, I do do not want my kids. When the kids are a little, this is this is some of you out there that our parents can remember the time that you said something, maybe to you, your wife or your husband or whatever, and your kid repeats it. And you're like, oh, you don't even realize it. Right. We're like, oh my goodness. So again, thinking along those lines, just even if you don't have kids, is what are the words that I'm saying, how am I being and can I help? So can I show people better habits that can, that can inspire them to do the same?
Speaker 1 (26:43):
I love it. That makes so much sense. And, and we'll hopefully be able to instill confidence and allow those next generations to keep building on whatever it is. You're leaving from a wealth, even from a wealth standpoint, from a health standpoint. It's, it's just a great, great way to look at that. Handing down of one generation to the next. I love it. I love it. Okay. So before we start to wrap things up here, where can people find you? How can they get in touch with you? Great.
Speaker 2 (27:19):
So we are on all the social media platforms, Instagram, Facebook optimal self Facebook is optimal. Self one. Igg is optimal underscore self as well. But our, our webpage is optimal self.today, optimal self.today. And on there our, we do have some courses everything up there that we're even showing, right, right now is, is free. So we can, you can jump in we'll, we'll get you in. We have a private Facebook group that we, we put a ton of stuff in that you can actually, you know, it's getting, it's getting pretty good. There's a lot of really cool people in there doing some really cool things. Because again, it's not about us. It's not about me. It's about building a community of like-minded people that want to pull for each other root for each other. You know what I mean? Like environment matters. And so we're trying to build an environment that, that, that people are, are, are trusting of. But they're also contributing back to, because man, to see some of the things that these people are doing just using some of the principles of optimal self is pretty amazing. So we'd love to have everybody. So if you're interested, please optimal self that today. We'll get you there.
Speaker 1 (28:30):
Awesome. Thank you so much. And who can want a little more encouragement and support in their life. And now before we end last question that I ask everyone is knowing where you are now in your life and in your career. What advice would you give to your younger self?
Speaker 2 (28:48):
Man, so much. No, I think that I, I think for myself is the thing that when you, when you ask that the, the, the very first words that came to my head is stay the course and what that means, what I mean by that is a lot of times we, we believe something. We want something we're afraid to talk about it. And I will say this as an athlete. You know, when I was very little, yes, my, the, you asked me what I was doing. And I was like, I'm going to be a baseball player. Like, that's what I was doing, you know? And I wasn't the best. Let's just be very clear. I wasn't your all-star game guy. I wasn't the kid hitting home runs as a kid who was getting tired. I was opposite. I didn't make all star teams. I didn't have all that stuff.
Speaker 2 (29:40):
And so, you know, it was, it was a turning point. I'll share this really quick because I think it'll help people out. There is I was 13 years old and my best friend's dad was our coach. My best friend was the best player, if not in the league, definitely on our team. And we grew up together. He's still one of my best friends to this day. And he was, it was a bigger kid growing up. You probably, you guys probably remember this. I was not that kid. I was the little munchkin kid, you know, you just hit over at second base or, you know so, and at 13 we won the championship in our league and it was probably the best year I ever had as a, as, as a baseball player at that young age, I thought for sure, man, this is the year I'm going to make the all-star team, right.
Speaker 2 (30:23):
This is the year and I didn't make it. And our team had won. So we had this, you know, the, the, the, the pizza party after. And, and so I went up to coach who was also, you know, I'd been on vacation with him because I was, you know, got to, you know, he's, his son was my best friend. And I said, you know, he's like, what's the matter? What do you want? And I said how come I didn't make the all-star team? And he looked me dead in the face. Can I can tell you this? I, I can tell you to this day, which is not even know how many 40, 30 years later he, and I said, and he, I could tell you what he was wearing. I could tell you what he smelled. Like, I could tell you everything about it.
Speaker 2 (31:02):
Every I could tell you what I was wearing. And he said, because you weren't good enough now don't get me wrong. The crushes, any 13 year old boy or girl, probably. But that 13 year old boy in me was crushed. He was, he still is to this day, but I'll tell you this. And I went to the side, you know, and got away from where everybody was. I went up to the lady, the pizza counter, and I asked her if I could use the phone, if she'd call my mom, because her mom wasn't there, she could dial the number for me. I asked her to come get me. She's like, what are you doing? I said, mom, please come get me, please come get me, please, please, please, please swish. She's like, find them on my lap. I didn't even wait. I just went out and sat on the curb, waited for her.
Speaker 2 (31:39):
She pulled up and she's like, what is going on? And as soon as I got in the car, man, tears just pouring out and she's like, what is going on? I'm like, just go, please. She's like, I'm not leaving, moving this car until you tell me what's going on. So I told her, right. I said, I wasn't good enough. And she was like, ready? Any mom? Right? Like, and here's the thing. She, you know, I said, please, don't go in there. I mean, bears don't please, please, please. Well, what do you want? What do you want Jeremy? And I said, can we go to big five? I don't even know big five as a place anymore, but in California was at sporting goods store. And I said, please take me there. And she said, what do you want? And I walked in, I showed her.
Speaker 2 (32:18):
I said, can we please buy me a tea? I'll never forget. It was their big yellow sign, $19 and 99 cents. And that tea is still with me today. That was my 13 year old year. And that tea, I went in the backyard and I hit minimum a hundred balls off that tee every single day. No one's watching. I didn't have many balls to start and I'd tear them up. I started using tennis balls or racquetballs and anything I could find to hit off and a hundred swings. I would not. Everyday when I got home, I'd go out and do a hundred swings or now, or I wouldn't let myself do anything else. Right. All the way through, by the time I was 18 years old, I was, I was in all league player. I was the MVP of our team. I got a scholarship and the rest is kind of history.
Speaker 2 (33:02):
But that, that, that T stays with me as a symbol is because that it wasn't that he was saying, I want people because most people, even when they hear this, they go, what we should have knocked that guy. And what is it? You know, where's he at today? And I'm like, it was the greatest thing that ever happened. And here's why is because he was honest with me. He wasn't saying I wasn't good enough ever. I wasn't good enough in that moment. So again, there was 12, 15 teams in that league. There's, you know, whatever, 15, 16 kids on everything. There's 80 to a hundred kids in that league. It's not like I'm the only kid that didn't make it there. 15 kids and made that all star team. If I was the 16th best kid that year, then I wasn't good enough. Right. But it's not that I'm not good enough forever.
Speaker 2 (33:47):
It depends on how I, how, how you look at it. But I knew this, no one was ever going to say that to me because I, because of lack of effort, you, weren't going to tell me that because I didn't work hard because I'm not, I'm telling you, I'm still not best of that in my, you know, I wasn't the best player of all time now, but I maximized my ability. I will say that like that, that's something that I want people to understand, but I want what I wanted them to see is there's somebody out there right now that has probably been told they're not good enough. They're not, they're not pretty, they're not smart. You're the dumb sister. You're the dumb brother. You're this, whatever, right. It happens to all of us. There's so many people out there that did that lives with us forever.
Speaker 2 (34:26):
And I'm here to tell you it lives with me today, but it lives with me in a way that he told me that, because in that moment I wasn't good enough. And I needed to prepare. I needed to get better. That was in my control. That's the thing that was in my control because I didn't make it at 14. I didn't make it a 15. I didn't make it to say let's be clear. Right. And, and I, and you probably heard this, I think it was a bill gates and say, we underestimate, you know, we, we overestimate what we can do in a year. And we underestimate what we can do in five. And again, and when I look back at those years, I think, oh my gosh, because if I would have expected after that, you know, to go out side and hit a hundred balls and then leave and go make the next all-star team.
Speaker 2 (35:07):
Cause I did it once I would have been, it would be a full, everybody would be like, yeah, you're crazy. Right? It's the same person that goes, oh, I went to the gym once. Like, no, it's not, that's not going to work. Oh, I had us salad. No, that's not going to work. This is about consistency. This is about finding your thing and doing consistency over time will create those results. But, but that story in that, that T is a symbol for me to remember like, Hey, starting a podcast, starting this. You're not good enough. You're not, you have to get better. And that takes the work are you with? And if you're willing to do the work, man, you get to be on cool podcasts like this with Karen. And that's that's, that's what ultimately happens. Right? You get the, you get the plug along and, and cool things happen. So I would just tell myself to understand that, listen, it's going to take work. Don't be afraid of the work. Don't be afraid of putting in the extra hours. Don't be afraid of getting up early. Don't just, just keep going, man, stay the course. Don't be afraid of the work. Cause if you do that, anything's possible.
Speaker 1 (36:18):
Oh, you went on mute. You're on mute. I was saying excellent advice for anyone and certainly great advice for any youngster out there trying to get better at things I want to get better at. So thank you so much for that advice. Thank you. And thank you so much for coming on today and sharing all this good stuff. We will have all the links to all of your stuff at podcast dot healthy, wealthy, smart.com. One click will take you to social media. We'll take you to the website, everything, to all the free stuff you mentioned. So we will have all of that over at the podcast website. So Jeremy, thank you so much for coming on today and giving us up, giving up some of your time.
Speaker 2 (37:07):
Thank you. Thank you so much for having me. I really, really appreciate it. I really enjoyed it. So looking forward to the next time.
Speaker 1 (37:14):
Pleasure, pleasure, and everyone. Thanks so much for listening. Have a great couple of days and stay healthy, wealthy and smart.
In this episode, Financial Advisors at Certified Financial Services, LLC, Erin Hoffman and Jill Van Nostrand, talk about physical therapists’ financial wellness.
Today, Erin and Jill talk about prioritising financial wellness, the different types of disability policies and insurance, managing student loans, and saving for retirement. Is it recommended to get a business disability policy? How can you maximise your financial wellness?
Hear about a few forgiveness programs, asset location strategies, and the difference between an IRA and a Roth IRA, all on today’s episode of The Healthy, Wealthy & Smart Podcast.
More about Erin Hoffman
Erin Hoffman is a Financial Advisor at Certified Financial Services, LLC (CFS), a wealth management firm headquartered in Paramus, NJ, providing individuals, families, and businesses with financial protection and wealth accumulation strategies.
She specializes in working with women business owners, and Physical Therapists, as well as other Healthcare Professionals. She understands that as a Healthcare professional, you specialize in the movement of the body. Once she started working with her aunt and best friend, who were PTs, she started partnering with countless others who wanted to focus on the movement in their financial world. She has been successful in assisting with sticking points in their finances, leading them to a place of greater range of motion in their financial world. She also hosts monthly educational classes for Healthcare Professionals on various topics- from financial, to legal, to even marketing.
More about Jill Van Nostrand
Jill specializes in helping PTs, dentists, and others in the medical fields grow and protect their wealth by focusing on key areas of importance in their finances. Jill built an impressive career as a musician and college professor, but it wasn’t until her career as a real estate investor that she grew aware that a leading cause of a person’s stress derives from financial worries. As she was intrigued by that relationship, Jill decided to bring together her interest in financial wellness with her desire to help others.
Jill’s mission of educating clients and guiding them towards stress relief and financial balance is drawn from her own family experience. She wants to provide families, individuals, and practice owners with the knowledge to help them protect and grow their assets and, in turn, enjoy life more.
Jill enjoys spending time with her husband, Gary, and son, John, in the North Jersey lake region or hiking in Vermont. She serves on the Economic Development Commission in her town of West Milford, NJ.
Physiotherapy, PT, Healthcare, Finances, Wellness, Policies, Insurance, Loans, Disability Policies, CFS, Retirement, IRA, Savings, Strategies,
To learn more, follow Erin and Jill at:
Facebook: Erin Hoffman
LinkedIn: Erin Hoffman
Mama Bear PT: https://www.mamabearpt.com
Subscribe to Healthy, Wealthy & Smart:
Read the Full Transcript Here:
Speaker 1 (00:01):
Hi, Jill and Erin. Welcome to the podcast. I am happy to have you on
Speaker 2 (00:06):
Hi, Karen. It's so great to be here. Thank you for having us today.
Speaker 1 (00:10):
Sure. And now today we are going to talk about wellness, financial wellness for physical therapists. So like I said, in the intro, you guys love working with physical therapists. You specialize in this. My audience happens to be a lot of physical therapists, so this is just a perfect match. And today we're going to talk about kind of the top three things physical therapists need to think about and implement for financial wellness. So guys, I'm going to turn it over to you, um, to start it out. What is your first tip?
Speaker 2 (00:50):
Awesome. I'm so glad that we're here today. Karen, because as you're saying, right, our health and our physical wellness goes hand in hand with our financial wellness. And a lot of times there's a disconnect, but that's why Jill and I love working with PTs and it's really close to home for both of us. My aunt's a PT and we have a few friends who have come out as doctorates. Uh, and just a quick recap for Jill and I. We are financial advisors at certified financial services, and we love partnering with PTs who really want to focus on the movement in their financial world and achieve that financial wellness. Uh, so the first thing that we always kind of start right off the bat with them is protection, right? That's, that's the first thing. That's the most important thing also, because if we think about, you know, you've worked so hard to get your degree to get into the clinic that you're in or that you're starting, but we really want to make sure that we have a secured, satisfied lifestyle. If we think about what could happen, if, if we weren't able to go to work the next day, right? If we became too sick or injured, that would prevent us from a bring home a paycheck, uh, and without a paycheck, how long could we pay for our rent utilities, buy groceries, make those student loan payments that are so fun. Right? So disability insurance is first and foremost. One of the most important things that we'll talk about with our PTs,
Speaker 3 (02:25):
That's it that's really well said. Yeah. Thank you, Karen. I think it's really well said, Erin, when we start with protection first, we're protecting our most important asset, which is our ability to produce income, right. To produce cashflow. So that really should be number one in our priorities. And it's really important to think about what our priorities should be. Not everything can come in first for that number one position in terms of things that we need to accomplish for our financial wellness. And that is definitely a number one for us. And there are different kinds of insurance out there. There's individual. There's also disability insurance that covers the daily running expenses of a brick and mortar business, for example, or a practice for example. And there's also disability insurance that covers our contributions to our qualified retirement accounts. So there are a lot of different options out there. Some of which are very new and a lot of people are not aware of them. So we make our clients aware of them and, and get out as much education as we can.
Speaker 1 (03:29):
So now let's talk about, cause everyone, um, let's talk about a couple of those different types because a lot of times I see on social media, we talked about this before, um, especially newer grads or even those out for a while will say, well, I get disability to the company I work with. So do I really have to have my own as well?
Speaker 2 (03:53):
Go ahead. It's a good point. Karen and Jill and I get asked this question all the time, and I think one of the most important words that comes to mind when thinking about having your own individual policy is I it's yours, but it's also portable. You might not be at that clinic with that same employer for your whole entire life. So if you have your own individual policy, that's yours, it doesn't go away. Whether you, you know, have clinics, uh, what have you and Jill and I also spend a lot of time reading through the language of a disability policy with, with our PTs. And it's so important. They might, your employer might not have certain riders that an individual policy would have that could be in your benefit. Uh, and it might not be through a carrier that favors PTs or other healthcare professionals that Jill and I work closely with. So I think those are, those are some of the big, uh, advantages to having your individual policy. And also that you're ensuring your own insureability right. Your, your age, your health, uh, at today's point in time.
Speaker 3 (05:00):
Yeah, definitely. I, and that, that is so true, Aaron, that there's a huge difference between the language of a group policy versus an individual policy. And the individual policies tend to be much more favorable to the insured in terms of what qualifies as a disability, or even in some cases, a partial disability. So when we have an individual policy, we can design that to fit someone's exact needs and their exact situation. And in a group policy, you're just not going to get that kind of customization. Um, it's great to have, but we, we look at it as like an add-on benefit. It's much, much better to have an individual policy and there, and there's another point which comes down to taxation of the benefit if we are actually making a claim and we're getting that benefit, if it's an individual policy that we are paying for, we get that benefit, tax-free income tax free. And if it's a group policy that our paying any part of four, then that benefit's going to be completely income taxable. So there's a big difference in the actual benefits and the language between a group policy and an individual policy. Excellent point.
Speaker 1 (06:12):
Yeah. I had no idea what a great point. Um, and now let's talk about quickly the difference between an individual policy and a sort of business policy. So if you're a business owner, can you, or should you just continue, so continue with your individual policy or is it recommended that you get a business policy, which are usually more expensive?
Speaker 3 (06:40):
Yup. So for an, for an individual to protect their income, we definitely recommend that whether that is a business owner or someone who is a W2 employee of a business, whatever it might be, it's really, really important to have that we do recommend it. And then business overhead insurance is something that can be added on to a, sometimes to an individual policy can be a separate policy and that would cover the day-to-day runnings of the business of the practice. So they're usually two separate policies that people would have. So the one would protect the income and then the one would protect those day-to-day expenses of running the practice. So it's really important to have both, if you are a practice owner
Speaker 1 (07:24):
And would this be, so let's say you are a practice owner and you have what you think is a business, uh, disability plan. Should you specifically ask for business, overhead insurance is, or is, does, is that considered part of it?
Speaker 3 (07:42):
It is a separate policy business, overhead protection. That should be a separate policy. Um, aside from your business insurance, like your business liability insurance, whatever that might be, um, or any kind of property insurance that a property owner would have. So those are all different kinds of policies. They're all super important to have, of course. And when we're talking about disability, we're really talking about protecting the source of where all of that comes from, which is our income and our ability to produce income and revenue. So super important.
Speaker 1 (08:17):
Got it, got it. Well, that is a great tip for people and it's making me think too. I have that. I have to, every time I do a podcast with, with, uh, folks like you, it gets me like, wait, do I have that? Do I? Okay. Yeah. Mental note check to see if I have business overhead insurance, which I don't think I do. That's going to be something I'm going to call about. And now when you're working with your clients and they say, oh, but it's so much more expensive. Can't I just stick with my individual policy.
Speaker 4 (08:50):
Speaker 2 (08:50):
We always bring up the point of, well, think about the expense, if you did not have this coverage in place. Right. And specifically with the business overhead expense, as Jill had, had talked about, that covers the everyday. So the rent and utilities. How about if you have employees, their wages, how, how is that going to be covered? Right. You know, even loans, voluntold they're covered under having this business expense policy, you can get, you know, additional, you know, health coverage covered as well. So these different plans kind of cover different things and we kind of help PTs and business owners navigate. What's the best strategies for them.
Speaker 1 (09:34):
Awesome. Okay. Before we move on to tip two, is there anything we'd glossed over on disability, insurance and protection that you want to add onto before we move on? I would just say, oh, sorry, go ahead there. No, go ahead, Jill.
Speaker 3 (09:49):
I would just say that it really is one of the most important things that we can do for ourselves financially. Uh, in terms of growing our wealth, we also need to protect our wealth. We don't want to leave ourselves open to, uh, situations that would erode everything that we're working to build. So, you know, just something to leave people with on that. Yeah.
Speaker 1 (10:10):
Very, very good point. You work so hard. You don't want an injury to take it all away from you, right. Okay. That makes perfect sense. All right, let's go on to tip number two.
Speaker 3 (10:21):
Okay. Two is management of the student loans. If a PT has student loans, managing them is a major priority. We believe in terms of financial wellness. It's not something that we can, that we can ignore, uh, that needs to be addressed as soon as possible so that we can get, we can help our PTs get on a plan and get them into a situation where they're going to have a comfortable monthly payment. They're going to have, uh, the POS, first of all, the POS first things we do is look at, is it possible for them to get into a forgiveness program? There are a few different programs today. Uh, we work with an expert in the student loan field. She's helped many, many of our clients, and we work hand in hand with her to help our clients. And first of all, we see if we can get them into a forgiveness program.
Speaker 3 (11:12):
That's number one. And number two, if a forgiveness program isn't impossible, then we're looking into management. How can we get that payment to a reasonable amount that is not going to prevent everything else in life that all of us want to have from happening and to make sure that we can still fulfill our dreams and reach our goals. So if we are, uh, if we have a PT who, for example, is working really hard to get those loans down, we're also gonna talk about, let's start some savings, right? Because we can't get those years back. And it's all about management and for saving and servicing our loans at the same time, then that's going to give us the optimal results. Aaron,
Speaker 2 (12:00):
It brings up a really good point. And a lot of times, you know, student loans might be one of our biggest expenses in our world. So we have to kind of help find that balance between where are we saving, how much are we saving and still paying down, servicing that debt. So that's kind of where Jill and I come in and find that, that happy balance, because we have to be saving and have some kind of bucket, right? God forbid, while we're still servicing the debt and we'll get into the retirement more. But student loans are probably the biggest threat to, to our retirement. Um, you know, we'll get more into that, but it's important to be balanced in both.
Speaker 3 (12:40):
Yup, absolutely. And I think from the perspective of a student today, who's graduating, let's say they're coming out with a couple of hundred thousand of student loans that may seem almost insurmountable. And what we do with our clients is help them and help PTs to, uh, be able to fit that into the budget and still have everything else going on that they want to have in their lives. So it's, it's about building that career that you love, PTs love their careers. They want to be in that career. They, they want to work with their patients. It's a wonderful career and they should be able to love it and enjoy it and not have that be something that's going to be an anchor and weigh them down. And that's what we do with our PTs, helping them with that.
Speaker 1 (13:30):
And let me ask you a question. You had mentioned forgiveness programs. Could you give some examples of some forgiveness programs that, uh, physical therapists and maybe other healthcare professionals can take advantage of if they qualify? Sorry. Sure. We have a few that's okay. Is it okay now? Yeah. Yeah. My internet connection was a little unstable, but it's back.
Speaker 3 (14:04):
Okay. All right. Awesome. Should I just pick it up there? Okay. Is it, is it not good again? I can hear you, Aaron. Are you okay? Yes. Okay. All right. Okay. We're good. Yep.
Speaker 1 (14:20):
Okay. Yeah. So you can just pick it up from there. So, um, what forgiveness programs can physical therapists or their healthcare professionals take advantage of?
Speaker 3 (14:30):
Absolutely. So there are a few different programs today. The first one that I think most people are the most familiar with would be the public service loan forgiveness. So that's for people who work in the public sector or they work at a five oh one C3 non-profit, uh, company, which allows you after 10 years, assuming that the balances have not been paid off to receive forgiveness. There's another program, which also a lot of people are familiar with income based repayment, uh, that has some different things that we need to qualify for in order to be part of that program. But it's actually a lot more, a lot easier and a lot more possible than a lot of people think it's definitely worth looking into. And that program allows for forgiveness of the loans after 25 years of on-time payments. And then there's another program which is fairly new.
Speaker 3 (15:27):
That's called the pay as you earn program. It has very specific rules and dates about when the loans were dispersed and w we can definitely help go through those and work through them and see if our, see if PTs would qualify for any of those programs. We find that many people do qualify for forgiveness programs. They're not always aware that they can, or they think, you know, they have to work at a specific kind of a hospital or something like that, but, but there are a lot of options out there and it can, it can save hundreds of thousands of dollars. Literally. This is the amount of money that we're talking about here that people have saved by taking the time to talk to a professional who knows the ins and outs of this, this part of the field. So it's really, really important to take a look at this.
Speaker 1 (16:22):
Excellent. So we've talked about protection, having the right disability coverage, managing student loans, and you alluded to within the managing of student loans that we also need to save for our retirement. So let's talk about retirement because I think it can be confusing and overwhelming and daunting if you have, if, if you're just not sure what you can do. So what are our options for retirement? Yes. Great.
Speaker 2 (16:52):
And you bring up a good point when people hear retirement, Karen, right. They kind of want to run for the Hills. It can be very overwhelming, Joe. And I try to make it as, you know, as an in line to your goals and help walk you through it as much as we can. And that's, there's a lot of different options for, especially for business owners. There's something called a SEP IRA that a business owner can have. Uh, we walked through a lot of different options that a lot of people might not know about or even available to them. And Jill and I talk a lot about saving into different buckets of money. So not put putting all of our retirement savings into one specific bucket or vehicle, if you will, and really having a strong plan, that's diversified across a lot of different buckets. Jill, I'm sure you can, you can add more to the bucket. We can go on and on about those. Oh, thank
Speaker 3 (17:52):
You, Aaron. Aaron knows I can go on and on about this. So retirement is something that is never too soon to start it. It's just never too soon. If we start saving for retirement in our twenties, we can, we can literally save half or a third of what we would need to save. If we start in our thirties and then help us, if we start in our forties, it's something that we need to start as soon as possible. And what Erin, when you were saying is so true, it's not just about our asset allocation. It's about asset location. What are the different accounts that we're able to take advantage of to save money in? So that we're both saving now on say for example, on taxes, but also in the future. So we're, so we're not creating a lot of tax liability for ourselves in the future.
Speaker 3 (18:43):
We want to make sure that we have assets that we can turn into income in the future because while net worth is really good to talk about, it's important, really what we need to be able to do with our assets and with our net worth is in your retirement to turn that into reliable and guaranteed income sources, because that is really, what's going to set us up for wellness now in the midterm and in the future and retirement accounts, we have our qualified accounts like our 401ks and our IRAs and our Roth IRAs. And then we also have other options that have tax advantages that we also talk about. We also want to make sure that we have liquidity during our lives so that we're saving in ways that are going to, so we're going to be able to access some of our savings if we need it while we're in our working years. And then when we get into, uh, finishing up our accumulation period and getting into retirement, which is our distribution phase, that we have created ways for ourselves, uh, to both have that guaranteed and reliable income, and also been as tax efficient as possible all along. So we can continue that tax efficiency in the retirement years as well.
Speaker 1 (20:02):
And so you had mentioned 401ks, IRAs, Roth IRAs. Um, quick question. And I think I know the answer to this, but I don't know when you're, uh, w working for a company, you can have a 401k. I don't even know if companies are matching anymore. I don't know if that's a thing anymore, but if a company is going to match, do you, let's say a company matches at 7%, I'm just pulling a number out. Right. Do you suggest that as the employee, you put 7% in and have that match, or do you suggest as an employee, you put as much as you can and they'll kick in an extra 7%. Does that make sense? I think
Speaker 3 (20:47):
In general, I'm sorry. Go ahead. I said, does that make sense? Yeah, that, that does make sense. Yeah. I think it does depend on an individual's particular situation, but if we, it, and believe me, if an employer is so generous today that they do a 7% match, of course, we generally would recommend that people get the match if they can. Um, some employers don't match today. Most common we've seen is around 3% if they do match, but, uh, if they, if they do match and we can be putting enough in there to get the match, that's a great idea to get that because that's like additional income for us from the employers. So that's great to get. And then there, there are some other ways that we can also save in addition to the 401k, because we, one of the, one of the things about those qualified retirement accounts, as you know, Karen, is that they, we do have to wait until we're 59 and a half to access that money without penalties or paying income tax on that.
Speaker 3 (21:49):
Uh, we do have to, unless there are specific situations along the way, of course. Uh, so we do want to make sure that we have ways of savings that are going to give us liquidity during our working years, during our accumulation years. So there are other types of accounts that we can take advantage of as well and save in those as well. So, as you were saying, Erin, we have those different buckets of money that are in different types of accounts that have different rules as to how they work, how they are taxed. And th that's going to be the most beneficial for us in the long run. It's not just allocation, but asset location. Mm
Speaker 2 (22:28):
That's. You bring up a really good point, Joe, with location, right. Is almost even more important than the amount we have. Uh, and this is one of the biggest problems. I think that Jill and I see with clients is a lot of clients have, you know, a retirement plan they've been saving, but what's their distribution plan. They want over time and where is money coming from? And where's the best place to be starting to pull it from and in what order? So we're walking through all of those strategies, uh, with, with our clients and ultimately how to have the highest possible cashflow with lowest taxes and, and leave a legacy if we decide to. So those are all really important things that we'll, we'll kind of walk through.
Speaker 1 (23:13):
And can you give an example, maybe one example of where you can kind of what, where you can park your money bucket. That's not the 401k, the IRA, the Roth IRA, the step, you know, I think everyone kind of has, um, an idea of what those are, but what else is there?
Speaker 3 (23:41):
Absolutely. So I think it depends also Karen, the purpose for our savings for that particular savings and also our timeline. So when we're thinking about, okay, is, is this money that we're saving, that we want to be able to access, let's say in 10 years, and we want to invest it in the meantime, it's not something that we need right away, because if we're thinking about an emergency fund money like that, we usually recommend that people put that into a savings account, just a regular savings account that they can get to very easily. But if this is going to be invested money, then we can always do a brokerage account, which is going to enable us to access that at any time, we're not going to have any penalties or fees associated with it. If we have gains and we take some of those gains, then we're only going to ever have capital gains tax, as long as we've held those, those, uh, investments for a year in a day. So that's something that I think could be very beneficial to people as an accompaniment, to the qualified plans and, uh, you know, a great something great to have in the overall design of the financial plan.
Speaker 1 (24:50):
Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. Thank you for that. Um, and then I think one more thing on the IRA versus the Roth IRA, can you differentiate those two so that people know what's a Roth IRA what's qualifies for, how do you qualify for a Roth IRA, a regular IRA?
Speaker 3 (25:11):
Sure. So there, there are a couple of differences between a Roth and actually a 401k can have a Roth option as well. Not all employers offer that, but some do so between a Roth IRA and a traditional IRA, the main difference is how money is tax going into the account and then how money is taxed or not taxed, it's coming out of the account. And the difference is with a traditional IRA, we are putting in pre-tax dollars. We are not paying tax on the money that we put in right now. And we can also take that off of our income. So we get slightly reduced income tax, and then we have that money growing tax deferred. And then when we go to use it from 59 and a half on, uh, we are taking that money out and we're paying income tax on it. So with a Roth option, kind of doing the opposite kind of thing, and the rods does have income limits in terms of being able to contribute to a Roth account, uh, both for individuals.
Speaker 3 (26:12):
And, uh, so going forward, when we think about a Roth, we're going to be setting ourselves up with tax-free income in the future. As long as our money has been in the Roth account for at least five years, when we take it out after 59 and a half, we're going to get it. Tax-free, it's growing tax free all along and what, but when we put it in, we're putting in after tax dollars. So we paid income tax on our dollars that we put into a Roth, it grows tax-free and then we take in retirement income tax free, as long as we have that five-year period.
Speaker 1 (26:49):
Got it. Thank you. Great. Cause I know, uh, oftentimes people, um, can get confused on that. So I just wanted to kind of bring a little clarity around those different kinds of IRAs and things like that. And, and, you know, physical as a physical therapist, like this is not what we went to school for. So we depend on people like you, um, to walk us through and figure out where, where, where can I put money in now? So that at 59 and a half, I'm taking it out with the greatest benefit I can. And you're not like getting hit with like, oh my gosh. Or if you want to save for a house, maybe you don't want to have that in, uh, obviously in like a, your 401k, because if you pull that out early, you get a big penalty.
Speaker 2 (27:35):
Absolutely. And that's what we spend a lot of time, you know, collecting goals and walking through personal business goals, because that really determines where we're saving and how timeline wise. We want to access that money and we'll review it at least twice a year with, with clients. Um, and because that plan is always changing. Right?
Speaker 1 (27:57):
Yeah. And I think, you know, I think this gives this talk, gives, uh, the listeners number one, a lot to think about, to look into maybe what they already have in their retirement, what they already have in disability, how they're managing their student loans and perhaps they can take to their financial advisors, or maybe they want to come and talk to you guys to see how can we maximize our financial wellness. I mean, how can we make sure that we're not wasting money and that in the end we can get back the most money. Right. That's kind of the deal. Exactly. Yeah. So now, all right. Is there anything, um, so I just to, I'm going to recap the top three tips are protection and disability insurance, managing your student loans and understanding your retirement and where all of your, all the buckets that your money is going in. And to make sure that it's not all in one.
Speaker 2 (28:59):
Yes. Okay. You summed it up very well. Karen, I think ultimately to even break it down even more Jill and I are just here to kind of help people understand how to organize and what to prioritize. And we're here to help kind of navigate all of that because it can be very overwhelming and we are here to, to help navigate through that. All
Speaker 1 (29:20):
Right. Awesome. And now, where can people find you? Where can people find you, uh, websites, social media, all that fun stuff.
Speaker 2 (29:32):
Yep. So Jill and I are both on, on LinkedIn. Uh, you can find us on our website. We are on, uh, CFS, llc.com. We each have our own, uh, aims under there. And can you start us on LinkedIn?
Speaker 1 (29:48):
Perfect. And we'll also have just so people listening will have all the links at the show notes at podcasts at healthy, wealthy, smart.com. Um, so you can just go on there and one click will take you to Jill and to Aaron, to their LinkedIn and to their website. So excellent. Now we're going to finish up, I've got one last question for both of you. It's I ask everyone the same question and it's knowing where you are now in your life and your career. What advice would you give to your younger self
Speaker 2 (30:21):
Start saving sooner than you think? Even if it's, even if it, we always Jill and I always say we laugh at the start somewhere, right. Even if it's 10 bucks a week, you know, just start somewhere. And that will, that will grow over time. Absolutely spoken.
Speaker 1 (30:37):
Like it's spoken like a true financial advisor.
Speaker 2 (30:41):
Go ahead, Jess. How about you, Jill, I'll
Speaker 3 (30:44):
Give a nonfinancial nonfinancial related advice because I think that was perfect advice. Aaron, the sooner you start the better, um, I would also say to my younger self, um, just go for my dreams and my goals even more than I did. I think for young people today, just, just go for it, just achieve what you are, what you want to achieve with what's deep inside you. You want to bring good into the world. Just go ahead and do it.
Speaker 1 (31:12):
Excellent advice from both of you ladies. Thank you so much. And I also want to give a shout out to Helene, um, cause she sort of put us together and um, she, uh, is the creator of mama bear, uh, physical therapies.
Speaker 2 (31:29):
Yeah. So we'll
Speaker 1 (31:30):
Have a link to Helene's, uh, business in the show notes as well, because I love, um, I love to show sort of the web of how we're all connected, you know? So it's just shout out to her. Yeah. And to her business and we're all very excited. I think the three of us are collectively very excited for her.
Speaker 2 (31:50):
We're so proud of her. She's awesome. Agreed.
Speaker 1 (31:54):
All right. Well ladies, thank you so much for coming on and everyone thank you so much for tuning in and for listening. Have a great week and stay healthy, wealthy and smart.