Episode 189: Following His Calling - Kute Blackson's Journey to Self-DiscoveryMar 29, 2023
Kute Blackson is a beloved inspirational speaker and transformational teacher. He speaks at countless events he organizes around the world as well as at outside events including A-Fest, YPO (Young Presidents’ Organization), and EO (Entrepreneurs’ Organization). He is a member of the Transformational Leadership Council, a select group of one hundred of the world’s foremost authorities in the personal development industry. Winner of the 2019 Unity New Thought Walden Award, Blackson is widely considered a next generation leader in the field of personal development. His mission is simple: To awaken and inspire people across the planet to access inner freedom, live authentically and fulfill their true life’s purpose.
You will learn:
- Embracing Fear to Follow Your Calling: How Kute Blackson overcame fear to follow his soul's journey to the US.
- Unconditional Love: How Kute Blackson's mother supported him in his journey and the power of letting go.
- The Power of Forgiveness: How Kute Blackson found peace and closure with his father, even after years of silence.
You can find Kute on his Website and check out his Book.
“If you're not scared in some way, if you're living life and you don't feel some fear, probably your goals aren't big enough, your vision isn't big enough, what you're doing isn't big enough. You're actually playing too comfortable and too small.”
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Welcome back to your next stop. This is Juliet Hahn. In this episode, I speak with Kute Blackson. He is an inspirational teacher, author and entrepreneur. You know, I say this every time stories connect us. This is a story of passion, pivots and inspiration. You guys are going to love this. Koot's dad grew up in Africa, actually built churches in Africa, really did some life changing stuff where he was born and raised. His mother is Japanese. They raised Koot in London. So he's really been all over the world. Now he lives in the United States. And Koot was supposed to take over the family business, and he just felt like it was not in his calling. So he pivoted. And this episode, we really talk about the pivots, but also what it did to the family. When he decided to pivot, how things just kept opening doors and he knew that he was on the right path. The relationship he had with his parents, really beautiful story. You can find Koot on his website, kootblackston.com. You can also find his books, you are the One and The Magic of Surrender. You can find those on Amazon and on his website. He's also doing his last Bali retreat. He's done over 20 for 20 years. And you can find that at his Koot boxing. Or you can go to Boundlessblissbaly.com. You can find koot all over the social medias. Instagram, Facebook, LinkedIn. You do not want to miss this episode of your next stop with Juliet Hahn. I am a storytelling consultant. I've had a lot of people recently ask me what that is. I help people formulate their story. I help people connect the dots and pull out the powerful parts of their story and be able to connect them so they can articulate it on different formats. So if they're going on the podcast circuit, if they're on a podcast for 20 minutes versus 30 minutes versus an hour, I help be able to take those parts of their story that are going to connect with the audiences. If they're TEDx speakers, if they're going and they're writing a book, I help them be able to really take those pieces of their story and make them more powerful so they can connect deeper with the audience. I also help people come up with that one sentence. So if you're out in the business world and you're networking, I help you really get that one sentence that's going to let people insight, a little insight into who you are with just saying one sentence. I give a 30 minutes consultation and you can email me at [email protected] Hello, everyone. Welcome back to your next stop. This is Juliet Hahn. I say it every single time, but I am so excited for you to meet my next guest. This is cute. Blackson, how are you?
Speaker B 00:02:35
Great. Thanks for having me.
Speaker A 00:02:37
Yeah. And I'm saying that correctly, right? Koot.
Speaker B 00:02:40
Speaker A 00:02:41
Okay, great. Koot is an inspirational teacher, and author. He also is when we get into this episode, you're going to be so excited, but I want you to go and follow Koot. He is on Instagram. His name is spelled Kute and his last name is Blackson. And then you can also go to Facebook and then his website, which is his name, but that's where he hangs out. He's got some really fun things that are coming up, and we're going to get all into this. But Kud, I just would love for you to let the listeners know a little bit about yourself. So where you grew up, if you went to university, and then we will get into the rest of the episode.
Speaker B 00:03:19
Wow. I was born in Ghana, West Africa. My father's from Ghana. My mother's Japanese. I grew up in London, currently live in the US. And so I feel like I'm a citizen of the world from everywhere and nowhere. People ask where you're from and I don't know, it depends on the given moment. So I feel very blessed in that way. Yeah. From a very young age, I was a very empathetic kid, so I always felt people suffering very deeply. And there was always a part of me that wanted to alleviate people suffering. And so, as a young boy, some would say I had a bit of an unusual upbringing, a bit of an unusual childhood. For me, it felt very normal. I thought everyone grew up the way I did until I began to realize this wasn't the case. For instance, my first memories as a young boy, around six, seven, a chubby kid lost in the crowd, walking through a crowd of like, 1000 people. I remember seeing a crippled woman pick up the sand that this man walks on, wipes it on her face and stands up. And so a miracle, right? So, week after week, I grew up seeing blind people see and deaf people hear, and people stand up out of wheelchairs. And basically, this man who Sanchez picked up was my father. My father would look at a person in the wheelchair who hadn't walked in ten years and say, why are you sitting in the wheelchair? Stand up. You would think this was BS. You would think if you saw this on TV, you'd wonder if it was real. But I happened to grow up seeing this stuff literally every day, every weekend. And so I grew up with a sense that the miraculous and all possibilities were available to us as human beings. So I felt very blessed in that sense. My father, he was a very spiritual man. He built 300 churches in Ghana, West Africa, hundreds of thousands of followers. He built a huge church in London, 5000 people every Sunday. He was very spiritual in that he went to India in the 60s, had a kind of enlightenment experience, but had all these churches at the same time. And my mother was Buddhist, so it was this strange paradox and environment. Grew up meditating with my mother, going to church every Sunday. When I was age eight, my speaking career began and I started speaking in my father's churches. And at 14 I was ordained as a minister and I was given a mandate to take over my father's organization. My entire life was basically scripted and set out for me by my father and everyone. But at that age, I knew that this was not my path. I knew that this was not my destiny. But honestly, I think I was just too afraid to speak my truth. My fear was if I spoke my truth. I think like many of us, we allow fear to hijack our voice. We allow fear to hijack our truth. We allow fear to stop us from being who we really are. The fear is, if I dare to be who I really am, you won't love me. And so we hide ourselves and we hold back and we play small in so many ways. And so my fear was if I spoke my truth and followed my heart, that I would lose my father, that I would be alone, that I would be outcast. And so for four years I said, nothing went along with this. I mean, I tried to rationalize and justify and make sense, yet something didn't fit. And so when I was 18, I chose not to go to university. I got a scholarship to a very prestigious school called Dulley College, where a lot of president's kids, prime minister's kids went. And I was one of two in a class of about four or 500 that chose not to go to university, which is a big deal in the UK. Everybody thought I was completely mad. I just figured life had more to teach me. And at a young age, around 17, I felt this strong calling in my soul to come to the US. To go to America, the land of opportunity. But specifically because I wanted to go into the field of self help and spirituality and personal development. Why? Because as a young kid I was speaking to my father's office and on his bookshelf were literally 1000 books on personal growth and personal development. Everyone from the Eastern mystics, people like Krishna Murty, western philosophers, to folks like Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Marion Williamson, Juliet Hahn, Dan Melman I mean, Brian Tracy. Zig. Ziggler. And so I realized, damn, there's a whole nother way to inspire people that doesn't have to be through organized religion or the church. And this lit my soul up. And so as a young kid, my soul guides me like, go to America. The only thing is, sometimes what your soul guides you to do isn't always convenient or doesn't always make sense. But I really believe that. And I found through my life that when you follow your soul, you will always be guided in the right place at the right time. With the right people, even though the route that you take may not be the one that you most expect. And so I decided to say yes and follow my calling. And that's when I knew what I had to do, which was have that conversation with my father. At 1817 and a half, I think I was, I sat down with my basic. I looked into my future, and I saw if I could follow the expected path, the expected career, and be successful. And I projected age 30, age 40, age 50, age 60, age 70, and on and on. But if I didn't have myself, if I didn't have my own integrity, like, what kind of success is that? And I felt such a pain of betraying myself. And I saw that if I begin to lie to myself now to get love, validation and approval, I'm going to have to basically live this lie for the rest of my life. And that felt incredibly painful. And so at 18, I mustered up the courage. I was terrified, but mustered up the courage to have the conversation with my father and told him, I'm not taking over, which didn't go over too well. We didn't speak for two years, and I renounced everything. And long story short, I won a green card, literally in the lottery, green card lottery that enabled me to come to the US. And two suitcases, $800, landed in the US as an 18 and a half year old kid with a vision and a dream to inspire people in some way, and went and found teachers and mentors and authors, many of the best selling self help authors, studied with some of them. A few years later, started traveling the world in search of answers, went to Israel, studied with some rabbis, went to Thailand, studied with some monks, ended up in India. And that's what kind of cracked me open to a deeper sense of purpose and who I am. And then I came back to America about 20 years ago and began working with people. Before coaching the coaching industry, before it was a popular thing, I began working with people one on one. No idea what I was doing, but just following my heart and a pure desire to be of service. And that opened some things. And one client came, and another client came, and very organic, another client came, and they transformed. And I started to evolve and develop my own way of working with people. I called it uncoaching. And people's life transformed, and people started flying from around the world to work with me one on one. And then it just honestly evolved from one on one to small groups to large groups, to retreats to bigger groups to bigger seminars and to best selling books. So that's my story.
Speaker A 00:10:26
Yeah. No, I have so many questions. I mean, the thing that I love and this is what I love about doing podcasting and talking to people and meeting people is, you just painted your life. We can all picture it, right? We can picture where you grew up. We can picture the churches. We can picture the path. And many people that have supportive parents, that have parents that say, this is the path that we expect for you. I have kids. I know in my mind, I think this is what they're going to do. But I know now in my age, not to project that on them. They're going to choose what they do. And I really, truly believe it's God's path, whether you believe in the universe, whether you believe in God, but that we all have a path. We don't always find it because we're not always aware and we listen to the outside world. And so I think it's so amazing that you, at such a young age, felt that and knew that and were like, I have a strong feeling you did struggle with it. You were like, okay, I'm going to try to please my parents. That's what we do as kids. Especially when you have loving parents, you want to please them. But the fact that you were able to say, okay, no, this is not what I want, because I know I feel my future. I see what it is. How did your mother feel in all of this?
Speaker B 00:11:42
Maybe this is generalization, but I think mothers are the source of life and the world and are probably the most important people on the planet. To be honest, my mother supported me unconditionally. I mean, I was terrified when I felt my soul calling me in a different direction. I was terrified to acknowledge what I felt because I knew the consequences of what that would mean. And so I told my mother, and I knew she was the one person that would support me. And as true as true can be, she just looked me in the eyes and said, if this is what you feel and this is what's in your soul, you have my blessing. You have my support. Like, I'm there. And she was the one that gave me the $800 to go to the US. And supported me. And it was interesting because my father and I weren't talking when I left the US, left the UK. And when I got to the US, I landed in Lax and went to Venice Beach at the time, which was not the best place, but it's the only place that the taxi guy took me to drop me off and kicked me out. And I ended up crying on the beach on Venice for, like, two weeks because it's such a culture shock between London and California and Venice Beach. And it was like, this is I've landed in a circus. And I was full of doubt and regret and wondering, shit, did I make the wrong decision? And I remember calling my mother, fully expecting her to say, come home. Come back because her and I was her only child, she was the closest person to me. And this was before cell phones. Right before cell phones, I call her on the pay phone and I said to her, like, I was crying and I made the wrong decision. And all she said was, don't come back, keep going. And I'll never forget that moment and I'm eternally grateful for that moment because she believed in me. And I think we all need someone who believes in us sometimes when we don't believe in ourselves and when we want to quit. And she did that and I think it was very unselfish of her. I think one of the greatest things a parent can do is let their kids go. Like to give their kids the gift of I set you free to live your path and I let you go. And I was so shocked that being her only son and probably the reason she lived, when it came time to let me go, she said, I can't come to the airport to wish you office. I can't do it, but I set you free. And she waved and blessed me and let me go and didn't cry. And I think she was so unselfish and unconditional in her encouragement to tell me to not come back, because I think probably everything inside of us wanted to say, come back, come home. And so I'm eternally grateful for that.
Speaker A 00:14:41
Well, I mean, that is the thing. As a parent, as a mother, you raise your kids and you know that that time is going to come. But I mean, my kids all laugh at me because they're like whatever we choose to do, whether if we go to university or not, when we spread our wings, I will definitely cry because I love them. I love them. I love who they are. I love the people that they're becoming and I love being around them. And so the thought of not having them there all the time is hard. But then you also think about it's because you've raised them to be good people and I know that they're going to do amazing things. I know it. And so I love that your mom, as much as she probably hung up the phone and was like, I wanted to so badly say, just come home, I'll take care of you. But she knew that wasn't the right thing. She created you. She helped you. That is love.
Speaker B 00:15:30
That's real love. I think many times we confuse love for over responsibility and we help people and we end up in helping them, we enable them, we don't truly empower them. And I think love is love is really when you serve, when your action, your intention and your action actually serves someone's highest soul evolution. And sometimes that's saying no, sometimes that is the more difficult path. And that's love. That's real love. When we truly serve someone's soul's evolution and that's what she did for me.
Speaker A 00:16:08
She did. Now, do you think that your father, in his own way, not speaking to you was his way of saying, okay, I love you because I'm hurt? Or do you think it was more of just his upbringing and it was like, no, you disappointed me.
Speaker B 00:16:22
Yeah, let's be honest. I love my father. And I came to a real place of forgiveness and peace with my father over the last 20 years and nothing but big love for his soul. But I know that in that moment my father was old school, born in Africa in the late 30s with nothing on a concrete floor in the middle of a town, with no electricity. Different generation, different culture, different continent, different everything. It's a different paradigm. And my father is also old school African and old school masculine, patriarchal, male. And so with my father, I knew it's like it's my way or it's my way. Which one would you like to choose? And I know that's my father and so I was aware of the consequences, which is why I was so terrified because I knew what it would mean. And he was disappointed. He was heartbroken when I had the conversation. Sometimes people think you have to like this a lot of talk himself, like be fearless. Sometimes when you find your purpose and you find your truth, you will be terrified at what that is calling you to do. Because when you truly find your calling and to be honest, if you're not scared in some way, if you're living life and you don't feel some fear, probably your goals aren't big enough, your vision isn't big enough, what you're doing isn't big enough. You're actually playing too comfortable and too small. And so I think fear is a natural part. And so I was terrified before the conversation, during the conversation, even after the conversation, wondering if I'd made the wrong decision. And yet deep down I felt the truth of it. And so I think he was disappointed. I think he was attached to his way. But I really, through time, believe that the truth serves everyone. When we speak the truth, it serves everyone, even though it may not seem that way at first. And what I believe is when we speak the truth from our hearts with compassion, with love, with empathy, of course, with respect, it also forces another person, in this case my father, it forces another person to evolve. It forces another person to expand. It forces another person to surrender. And I think it takes the other person or group of people that we speak the truth to, it forces them to evolve, to expand, to go on their necessary souls journey at the same time. And so I think it forced my father to reflect on some things for himself in his life. And years later, when I was maybe in my early twenty s, I came to a place of real forgiveness for my father. And I went to this men's retreat where men get together and we beat our chest in the forest together and do man stuff. But in this retreat, guys were crying and we were like dealing with our shit. And I remember really, forgiving my father, truly coming to a place of forgiveness, because I realized he was doing the best he could do and he didn't really have a father, and he didn't have the emotional capacity for more than that. It's amazing. When I really came to this place of forgiveness for my father, we hadn't spoken for years, and I just forgave him and I think part of closure, part of true forgiveness is not really about the other person. It's about your relationship with the other person within yourself. And I think many times we wait for the other person to make amends because we're right. And I was right about something. We wait for the other person to apologize. We wait for the other person to take responsibility. And in doing so, we inhibit, we limit, we block our freedom in waiting for the other person. And so what I realized is really making peace with my father is not about my father. It's about my relationship with my father within myself that has nothing to do with him. And so when I really forgave him and came to a place of peace inside of myself, with regards him, literally within a week, he called me out of the blue after years and said, you know, son, I don't know why, but I think we need to talk. And that was the beginning of healing a long journey of really healing the rift and healing our connection. And then we just slowly began to men. And I'm so glad that I chose to follow my truth, because our relationship then was not based on a lie, me trying to be someone I thought he needed me to be. And many times when we live the lie, often out of conditioning, when we be who we think we need to be in order to get love, validation, approval. When people actually love us, when our parents people love us, deep down, it doesn't feel fulfilling because deep down we know that the version of us that they're loving is not who we really are. So we're not even able to receive the love that they're giving us. My father, I believe that we all have the perfect parents, the perfect parents for our soul's journey and evolution and purpose. And even though they may not have been perfect on a human level, they were perfect on that spiritual level. Because even from that pain and that hurt and that trauma and everything went through, it shaped us to become who we are. And there are gifts in that relationship that we get to evolve from as well.
Speaker A 00:22:22
No, it's so true. And I love that you said your dad did the best he can. He came from a background. He built something that he was proud of, and I'm sure just wanted you to be a part of it. And he thought, oh, of course he's going to be a part of this. I built this. I built this for him. I built this for my family. I built this for myself. And then the fact that you kind of forgave him, and then he came, I think that's really beautiful. And I love, as you said, when you came to the United States, the fact that you won the green card, I mean, it just was another kind of thing that was like, yes, this is what I'm supposed to do. And that's what so many confirmation, so many people miss those little cues of those doors opening. And that's what I always say. I really teach about daydreaming. I call it daydreaming instead of meditating, because I have to walk. Like, I walk, I move, and that's when I get my best thoughts when I'm walking. And to think about what you want your life to be, what you want, and then really be aware of what's happening around you and look for those cues. Okay, you know what? I was thinking about this, and I just heard someone talk about it here. It keeps coming up here. It keeps coming up here. Well, how about you then look and see. Kind of explore that. Explore like, are you supposed to be writing a book? Are you supposed to be changing your career? Are you supposed to be doing that? And so many people just go through life with blinders on, and they don't listen, and they don't look around. And so I love what you're doing. I love what you're teaching. So explain a little bit in your journey when you decided you want to write the books. You said you had one on one. Then it was small groups and bigger groups and then bigger groups.
Speaker B 00:23:51
Yeah, it's interesting. I think in 2010, I had reached, I would say, a successful level with my coaching career, and I'd been working with people from all walks of life. I had a waiting list working one on one. I was beginning to speak and do events. And I remember in 2010, I always wanted to write a book, to be honest. I began writing my first draft of a terrible book, I think, looking back in 2004, and each year was rewriting this draft of a book. And the thing is, I think that when a fruit is ripe, it drops from the tree, and sometimes you can eat a fruit that's not ripe, but it won't taste as good. And so to be honest, I think it just took a necessary process of true ripening. In 2010, I won't mention, but I met with a self help publisher, the CEO of a self help publishing company, large one, and he was very impressed. He's like, wow, I'm really impressed with the things you're doing in coaching and your methods and the results I've heard you've produced for people. And he said, I want you to write this kind of book. And he mentioned a kind of book which was basically a coaching step by step methodology, like playbook of transformation in a book. And I was like, that is a terrible idea because for me, transformation is not just information. If it was like everything that has needed to be written has probably been written. I mean, Jesus came, buddha came, freud came, carl Jung came. I mean, it's all out there, to be honest. And I said, that's so uninspiring. That's so like not doing anything that feels unique and self expressed, but it will sell. And I said, yeah, it might sell, but no one's going to be moved and remember this kind of book 15 years from now because I don't remember any step by step to a methodology coaching book or transformational book. Of all the books, I remember none of, and I've read 900 of them, not one of those books that changed my life because transformation is not just information. And so I said no. And again, everyone interestingly said, oh, you're crazy. You have to say yes and do this book as a stepping stone to the book you really want to write. And I said, no. And this is why I believe that your soul will always guide you. Do not compromise your soul. I said no. That was 2010. From 2010 to 2015, I went and built my business to the next level. Started doing more events, building my team, built an online presence, even more platform social media, and just started expanding and said, screw it, I'm just going to put my work out there in the world. And in that five year process, I would say I deepened, I ripened, I matured, I seasoned, I connected to a whole nother level of my own spiritual evolution and alignment. And I would say out of the natural authentic readiness of my own being, the book unfolded. And I think when you're ready, life brings you what is right in the rightness of as a mirror manifestation of the ripeness of your being. And so many of us, we chase things out there, but we're not it in here. We're not ready. And some of us, we do create results. But that's why I think a lot of people have this thing called impostor syndrome because deep down we have a sense that we're not quite there. But you hear this thing in self help. Fake it till you make it. And I get what is trying to be said, but I say no. Don't fake it till you make it. Be it. Be it every step of the way. Be and live in alignment and integrity every step of the way. So that you can be it and become it and live it and be an. Embodiment of it so that your mind, your heart, your soul, your spirit is in coherence and integrity. And so I don't think the world needs any more fake teachers, gurus, coaches, or leaders. I think what we need are people that are truly living it not perfectly, but living it. And so I think during that five year period, I went through so much internally that out of the natural evolution of my being, life just started bringing to me what was next. And I don't even know how it happened. A book idea came, and then someone said, I signed with an agency called William Morris for some media stuff. And then the next thing was with a book agent at William Morris, and then some of the publisher let's have publishing. And before you know it, it was just happening right before you literally before you know it, we had a two day scheduled in New York with publishers. And my agent was like, don't expect much because publishers aren't doing much these days. And two days later we had this crazy bidding war where it was like six multi, six figure book deal was happening. And it was just happening. And that was what was amazing. It was just happening without force or effort. But yes, as a natural evolution. And so I sold this book based on the book proposal of the book I thought I wanted to write. And my first book, which now is called You Are The One, came out 2016. It was not the book I thought I wanted to write. It was not the title. It was like, literally, it was not the book I sold to the publisher. And that was humbling and amazing journey because I saw that the book I thought I was selling and writing was nothing to do with the reality and that the book had a life of its own. I began doing one of the evolutions of my work was after I was coaching about 2006, 2007. I'd been coaching for quite a few years. I wanted to create something that had never been created in the coaching industry. So, long story short, I created a twelve day. This was one on one. I don't do these anymore. But it was a one on one journey. I created a twelve day transformational experiential one on one journey where I take a leader or visionary person to India. I take away your passport, take away your money, you have a backpack, a pair of clothes. You stuck with me for twelve days. I make you sign your will in case you don't come back. I make you write letters to everyone in your life in case you don't come back, and take you through a 24/7 radical, crazy transformational healing journey to India, turn you inside out and make you face your fears. It's like the ultimate hero's journey. And it was crazy. I did 21 of these journeys in about seven years. Seven and a half years. I mean, people wanted to make reality TV shows. People literally started coming from around the world. And so after turning in several manuscripts to my publisher, after I sold the book, after they'd given me my advance, they kept saying, no, this doesn't work. This doesn't work. Eventually they said, we want you to write about your India Journeys and somehow frame that into a book. And I had always promised I will never write about those journeys because they're so unique, so spiritual, so multidimensional, you can never capture it in a one dimensional piece of paper. And I said, never. And I meditated on it, I prayed on it and I sat with the conversation with my publisher and I saw that my ego was really limiting the book. And I said, you know what? They're right. There's something to what they're saying that I need to listen to. And so the book became a book that was inspired by the India Journeys where I would take you as the reader through the India Journey, not step by step, but more symbolically and metaphorically through the India Journey in a transformational story process that was not just typical 134567 step self help, but an adventure journey. And that became the you are the One book. And it was an amazing process, an amazing experience. Nothing was what I thought it would be, but it was exactly what I knew it needed to be, right?
Speaker A 00:32:52
And that's the thing. And again, so many people what you touched on and I love when this happens because I've had it happen in some level and you're just like, okay, I'm on the right path. This is amazing. After my kids started getting older and I was like, okay, I stayed home with them, my choice and my husband's choice. And it was what I wanted to do. But as they started getting older, I wanted more. I wanted to be able to give back to the family and I wanted to also fulfill of some of my dreams. And so I started kind of doing this daydreaming and thinking about what I wanted to do. And when I decided to start the podcast and start my brand, it was like just one door after another just kept opening. And I just remember that feeling. And so when you express that, it is a feeling of like no other. I mean, being an entrepreneur, as you know, you have those ups and downs but when you have that flow and you have that flow for a long period of time, it is like no other feeling. And so I love that you just explained that because I've talked about that on the podcast, especially in the beginning when I really started out. And it's just cool to talk to other people that it's happened to as well, because it really is again, I'm going to say it. It's like no other feeling where it's just like I am on the right path and I'm doing this and every door just keeps opening and I'm meeting all the right people and it's like, boom. And then you do have the times where it's like, okay, that door shut. I need to turn left or right, not give up. And that's where so many people give up too early, because it's like, oh, things got hard now, I was in flow for a long time. Now things are hard. But when the things get hard is when you really start learning and when you start growing personally. So I think that's amazing. How old were you around that time when the book was coming out?
Speaker B 00:34:30
You are the 137 in that zone.
Speaker A 00:34:35
Speaker B 00:34:36
Yeah, because here's the thing. For the longest time, I thought, oh, I'm going to write a book at 21. I'm going to write a book at 25. I think many of us, we shortcut and short circus the process. We look around, especially now in an age of social media, where everybody wants a quick fix, everyone wants a quick think, and we look around and see what other people are doing, and we kind of like, compare our path and our evolution and our success and our process by someone else. I think when we truly follow our path, whatever our unique path is, we will always be on the right track. We will always be on the right track. And looking back, I realized I wasn't ready at 30 or 22 or 25 or 28 to write the kind of book I wanted to write. Because the truth is, you go to the bookstore, there are literally thousands of self help books out there, and a lot of them are regurgitations, completely unoriginal regurgitations of the next book, watered down versions of other books. There's very little either originality or original expression or presentation, because on some level, much of it's been said, but at least the authentic expression rather than being a copycat of another copycat. And so I would just encourage everyone to listen to your soul and follow your path and be obedient to that. Because when you do, you will find your unique voice and your unique expression, your unique message, or the unique delivery of your message. And I think that's the freedom. That's the freedom I found for myself, even with my second book, too. The magic of surrender.
Speaker A 00:36:33
Right, but that's the thing that's the reason why I asked you about your age is because, as you said, you thought you wanted to write a book earlier. And all of the books, I mean, if you're in the coaching business, consulting business, you've read the self help books, and again, it's so much, as you said, semantics. People are just changing words, and it's the way they're phrasing it, but they're literally saying the same thing. And it's what you connect with and how you interpret it, and then how you take it and take action but what I love about the book that your first book, it was based on experiences that you had, and that's what based on experience. And that's what took you apart from all the other ones there, because it was things that you did. So really, your publishers were onto something and were completely correct.
Speaker B 00:37:16
It was based on my real lived experience. And that's the difference. I think when you speak from your real lived experience, then your words, then you're speaking has a different transmission, because there's a lot of people that are speaking, speaking to speak, to speak, to speak, but they haven't lived it. They're speaking because it's theory. They're speaking because they read. But those that have lived it carry a different vibrational, force, soul, force, energy. And I think words are an excuse for the silence of your being, and words carry the vibration and the energy of your soul. And I think words are the excuse to carry and transmit your heart through often hard earned lived experience, to be honest.
Speaker A 00:38:12
Right. But that's what made your book connect with so many people, because it is an experience. Again, coming back as a parent, I talk to my kids all the time about things like that. You can teach someone because of this experience that you had. It's not just like you heard this. You heard a parent say this. It was something that you experienced and overcame, and when that happens, it's a very different thing. So I love that you said that. Can you take us through your second book and a little bit about that so readers can understand? I mean, the listeners can understand a little bit.
Speaker B 00:38:42
Wow. Yeah, the second book just came out quite recently, like a year and a half ago. So that's the sort of book I'm excited about. And in terms of the message I'm excited about, again, interestingly enough, this was not the book I thought I was going to write. This was not the book I wanted to write. This was not the book I intended to write. I knew that there was something brewing, and I sat down with a whiteboard, and I wanted to be very strategically intelligent this time. I said, oh, I'm going to write a book now. I have some experience. Now I know how the publishing field works. And I've danced with the big publishers, and I'm a big boy now. So I thought, now I'm going to write one of these mega bestsellers, four Agreements, self Gazillions of Copies, the Subtle Art of Not Given an F, that kind of book. And I studied the magical art. I'm studying all of these mega hits, the Magical Art of Tidying Up the Salt A Lot, the F, and wow, they all have these titles with swear words in them. I'm dissecting the book, shall we say industry, and going, okay, I'm going to come up with a plan that is going to be a bullseye of a multimega book. And I had hundreds of ideas on a whiteboard and brainstorming ideas, brainstorming themes, brainstorming titles, brainstorming topics before I even wrote the book. And they were really great ideas. But if I was really honest and truthful, none of those clever ideas felt authentic. None of them felt alive. They were great, amazing, but none of them felt that they truly like, I could not look you in the eye and say, this is it. I would just be making up a marketing gimmick more than anything. And the only word if I was honest, when I looked at the entire board full of hundreds of ideas, the only word that stood out and I felt like a real energy was the word surrender. And I thought to myself, oh, shit, I really don't want to write about this topic because it's something we know we should do. We all know we should kind of surrender ourselves, right? But all the great ones have talked about it. Jesus talked about it. Buddha talked about it. Dalai Lama talked about it. Ekatol talks about it. Mother Teresa talks. I mean, they all talk about it. But we all run away from this thing called surrender because we have misconceptions about it. And so I thought, it's like going to the dentist. We know we should, but we don't. And I want to write about something easy. I want to give people, what book does my publisher want? What book does my audience want? What book is going to be a bestseller? And the only word that resonated was the word surrender. And so I had to go through a process of surrendering to the book about surrender. And when I did, I felt the soul of the book. I felt that this book was the book that was seeking to be written, and I was just the vehicle and the delivery sort of messenger for the message of this book, the spokesperson for this book. And as I looked through my entire life, all the way back to my childhood and my parents and my upbringing, I saw and I felt that all of my life had been preparing me to speak about this topic and write about this book. And so I said yes. And then I look back, because I saw that the seeds of the book itself were planted a few years before in there in 2016. Right at the end. I was promoting my you are the One book And I just literally came off of doing Larry, a Larry King Show, which was my icon hero as a kid. So I'm on top of the world, and somehow life has a way of humbling you in strange ways. And I get a phone call that day telling me my mother has stomach cancer, and my mother was everything, and it was literally just like a knife in my heart. And I began flying back and forth from Los Angeles to London, literally every month for a week, one week out of every month in London, taking care of my mother in chemo sessions. What started off as the worst year of my life turned out to be the best year. As I start, I just got to be with her and sit with her and spend time with her and do things I'd never done. And so I began to realize that I don't think my mother's going to make it. And so about six months into the process, I got to be with her this entire year. About six months into the process, we went to the doctors, and the doctor said, there's nothing else we can do for you. So basically, get your affairs in order. You're going to die in a nice way they tell you. And so I remember looking my mother in the eyes in the hospital, and I asked her two questions. First one was, Are you afraid? Because it's going to happen? And this Japanese, little Japanese woman looked me in the eyes and she said, I'm not afraid because I know I'm not this body, that this body is just a temporary vehicle for my soul, and that even when this body is gone, I will be here, I will be with you. My soul is eternal, so I'm not afraid. And I really felt the depth of her knowing. And then I looked my mother in the eyes, and this is where I think the seed of the book was planted, too. I looked my mother in the eyes and I said, what can I do for you? I want to be a good son. Like, where do you want to go? What can I buy for you? What can I do? Like, tell me. We'll go there, we'll experience it. And my mother says, there's nothing I want, and there's nothing I need. The only thing I want is what God wants for my life. And in that moment, I was like, wow, what a statement. When we get what we want. Yeah, but in the face of your death and mortality, I saw that my mother, in her humble way, wasn't attached to living, wasn't attached to dying. She was surrendered to the highest unfolding of her life journey. And in that surrender, she was free. And so when I was looking at this whiteboard pondering what my next book was going to be, it became clear that surrender chose me. Like, this was the title. And I saw that for my mother, surrender was the password to freedom. When I began to then reflect on all the truly great ones jesus, Buddha, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Mohammed Ali, Bruce Lee, Mandela, Martin Luther King at some point, they all surrendered themselves to God, to life, the divine, the universe, to their souls, to their higher purpose. In that surrender, they transcended their own human limitations and tapped into another dimension of potential and possibility. And I think that's when life, God the divine, the universe, whatever people believe, listening, it's up to you. But that's when life began to express through them. That's when god began to express through them. And I think that's when we are used and life starts manifesting through us in ways that we cannot even imagine. And so, to me, I really believe that, and through my experience that surrender, I think, is the most powerful thing that we can do, that surrender is the real secret to manifestation, because in surrender, we get ourselves out the way. In our culture today, I think we have this idea or this misconception that surrender is weak, that surrender is passive, that it's like giving up, waving the white flag. It's being a victim, being a doormat. It's being left behind. If you surrender, you're not going to manifest your goals, your dreams, your desires. You're going to get less. And I'm actually saying I want to reframe people's perception of true surrender so that people can get like, wow, if you really understand surrender, and if you really surrender in the way that these folks did, you won't get less. But what if you actually got more than you could maybe not what you expected, right, but more than what you could have planned and visualized and intended and imagined with your own limited human personality, ego's, will. What if you got more? To me, that's the magic. The magic is the more like, man, I look at someone like Mandela, should he have not spent 27 years in prison? I look at someone like Mandela, is that a life you could have planned and strategize and brainstormed, like the life he lived was bigger than the mind, bigger than what you could have written on a vision board. It was, like, unlimited. And so I think surrender is when we take the limitations off of life. Surrender is when we let go of control, or I should say, the illusion of control. Surrender is when you stop trying to force life to fit your limited idea of how you think it should be and how you think it should look. And you're just open. You allow yourself to be open. You allow yourself to allow life to lead you, to show you. You allow yourself to be open and available to the highest unfolding of what life is seeking to express in a moment. And I think I'm really excited about this book. When I look at the last few years of humanity and where we have been going as a humanity, I feel as though the last few years life has been initiating us as a species, as a humanity, into a new way of living, which is more about living in alignment with our souls, living in alignment with truth. Living surrender less from the ego and more from the soul. And I feel even the last few years with the pandemic and this and everything that's been happening is part of the we've all been thrown into a surrender seminar as a human species. And I think Surrender to me is the password.
Speaker A 00:49:23
Beautiful. And you could see how excited you are. So, I mean, I absolutely love that. I mean, you could see that that is a passion of yours. You could see how excited you are. And I think it's such a beautiful story. So thank you for sharing that. And again, everyone can find your books and everything that you're doing. Amazon on Amazon, but also on your website, I'm sure, right? Yes. So I would love because I know we're coming towards the end, I would love for you to talk to us about what's happening in July.
Speaker B 00:49:49
Oh, yes. Look, for the last ten years, I have done a very special transformational, life changing event in Bali. It's for those that are visionaries and leaders, those that have a calling, those that feel a sense of mission. Those that know they have a purpose bigger than themselves, those that are tired of just like reading the books. But they're ready to truly heal and let go of the past, connect to their true, authentic selves, and catapult themselves forward into living that purpose and destiny. And so, since 2010, so about 1012 years minus two years of COVID we've done a very special event in Bali. It's called Boundless Bliss twelve Days, an immersion experiential seminar, training Without Walls, where I use Bali as the transformational room classroom. And I create processes and experiences that are designed to help people, shall we say, break free and uncondition themselves. And the next event is July the 28th to August the 8th. I've done 20 of these events in Bali, and this will be 21. And this year is going to be the final year I do these events. So if anyone feels inspired by the conversation, jump in. You can go to www.boundlessblissvaly.com. That's Boundlessblissbaly.com. All the info is there. You can apply there.
Speaker A 00:51:16
Oh, that's wonderful. Oh, my gosh. Well, I just have to say thank you so much for joining your next stop. This has been wonderful. I love starting my day, beginning my day with episodes like this, with connections like this. So I really appreciate you joining. I do have one last question, because you've been to so many places around the world, and I don't want to say what is your favorite? Because I hate when people say favorite. It's impossible. What is a place that you have like a really fond memory of all the places that you've been like that? You know, that one comes to your mind right now.
Speaker B 00:51:49
You know, look, Bali is is an obvious one because it is so healing and in a feminine way, profoundly transformational. I think in our culture today, in so many ways, the feminine is underappreciated and underestimated. And Bali somehow, in this feminine grace of gentleness and fluidity, melts you and doesn't give your ego any resistance because Bali is so beautiful, and lush and green. In a sense. It's easy to be there, and yet it transforms you. And you don't even realize how the hell you transformed. And that's what's really profound about Bali, but equally so I'm going to give you two. It says Bali for sure, but equally on a soul level. India has and I've been to Bali, like, 24 times now. India has, in a transformational sense, probably been my mother, another mother, which has given birth to me and my soul. Because being in India is tough. It's hard. The first time I went to India, I wanted to leave in two days. Like, I'm out of here. There's nothing like spiritual about this place. It's dirty, it's filthy, it's chaos. It's everything. I'm out. And yet somehow, India will find all of those places where you're not surrendered, all of those places where your ego is holding onto control for safety and survival. And it will take those and crack your head, crack your ego like a coconut on the cement and break you open not as gently as Bali, but profoundly. And so I think I have a special connection with India in that way. And India has shown me many, many things. And so there's never a moment when you're in India, just when you think you've seen everything, it's like this incredible woman, the feminine. You're a woman, you know, the feminine is just infinitely multidimensional in her capacity. India just shows you just another shade. Another shade. And just when you think, it just shows you something else. And so India is profound.
Speaker A 00:54:22
Nice. Okay, so I guess I have one more question since you answered two on that one.
Speaker B 00:54:25
Speaker A 00:54:27
In the United States. Did you stay in California? Are you just West Coast guy or have you lived in other places?
Speaker B 00:54:35
Interesting you asked. I lived in Los Angeles through and through until 2020. I was La. Like I'm la. Through and through. I couldn't imagine living anywhere else. I love La. The weather, everything, the mentality. And when COVID hit, California went a bit it went bonkers, let's just put it that way. And I had a house in Phoenix. I had a small house in Phoenix, which is a whole nother story, but I had a small house in Phoenix. I bought it in 2019. Somehow the universe just guided me there. And looking back, I understood why. So for the first time, I was guided to leave La. Right in COVID in March of 2020. And I was living in an apartment downtown. Something said leave now. Within weeks, I was gone. Before you know it, now I was camping out in Phoenix for a year, just living in Phoenix. Never thought I would live there because I'd go back and forth every few weeks just to write and create and come back to La. And I remember being on watch, watching on. Didn't have a TV, but I was watching on the Internet literally seeing riots because there were riots in La. Literally seeing rioting on my street and my building downtown being destroyed and borders put up, and it was like my block in my area was crazy. So now I'm like, I see why the universe had me leave, but when I left, it felt like a death. When I left, it felt like a part of me, like I cried when I moved from La. Because I never thought it would happen. And so I end up in Phoenix, which was Phoenix is a great place to die, in a sense. Phoenix raising from me. I mean, it has that energy of the desert. And so it was a profound year there. Then I was guided to sell my home in Phoenix at the end of 2021. I think it was beginning of 2021, and I ended up in Miami. Ended up in Miami. I'm like, yes, I'm moving to Miami. New vibe, new vision. It's the new city. I'm miami, here I come. I end up in Miami thinking I'm going to be in Miami for a while, for another 20 years, perhaps. And at the end of my first year lease in Miami, I was guided not to renew it. And I said, okay, universe, show me where I'm supposed to be. And I'm back in La.
Speaker A 00:57:08
You are? Okay. Interesting. Good for you. No, I love that. I love that you did travel around a little bit. I think that's wonderful. Well, again, it's been an honor to have you on your Next Stop. I so appreciate your time. And you guys, you know what to do, like rate review. You might listen to this episode and be like, oh, that's so interesting. But you don't know who in your life needs to hear this episode. So please share it with as many people as you can and just get it out. This is a word that people need to hear. People are stuck in their lives. Some people are going through things and they need to be connected to this episode. They need this episode in their ears so they can learn. So we will see you on another episode of your Next Stop. Thank you so much. I hope you liked this episode of your next stop. Please subscribe to my channel, share with your friends and join in each week. Bye.
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