Mind's Best Friend with Jeff Fink | Episode 136

Jeff Fink has struggled with depression since he was a teenager. His battle for emotional health and functionality took him through endless medications, therapy, and finally hospitalization. However, it wasn’t until he met Earl that his life finally began to turn around. Earl has been a life long friend and an incredible support as Jeff has pushed forward. He’s also a dog. Today Ben and Jeff sit down to discuss mental health, and the incredible impact that animals can have on our well being.

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Too Far Gone with Billy Vaughn | Episode 135

Whether its addiction, or overcoming our psychological trauma, recovery is a long and lonely road to walk. Former marine Billy Vaughn has done his best to ensure that the people who come to his organization have as much support as he can give. When he sits down to chat with Ben, the two talk about redemption and healing and how to come to terms with the individuals that some might think are too far gone.

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Embracing the Awkward with Michael Verde | Episode 134

To be or not to be ... awkward. If that is not the question, it is certainly the risk we run when we scrap tired scripts, initiate novel directions, and otherwise forsake the familiar for the imaginable. We might say that awkward is the price we pay for insisting that there must be more. Michael Verde insists that when it comes to communicating with people with dementia that there is more—much more than we currently accept is possible—and that if we were less afraid of awkward millions of people would not die of excruciating loneliness. The organization he founded, Memory Bridge, leads people from around the world across what he calls the Valley of Awkward to new forms of intimacy with people we seem determined to cure but less so to touch, or to be touched by: people with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Meeting people who disturb us, he says, with or without dementia, is to come face to face with what disturbs us about the human condition itself, including our own humanity. Benjamin joins Michael in a conversation about the awkward in the Valley and the more on the other side.

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The Cycle of Gratitude | Episode 133

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, the time to reflect on gratitude is here. But that's where a lot of people stop. Today Ben discusses the cycle of gratitude and how if your gratitude does not turn into giving, you're stuck in the condition of receiving from others, while not giving back to those around you.

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Listening to the Giants with Adelyn Price | Episode 132

With age comes wisdom, and if you’re lucky, grace. Though if you’re too caught up in the pace of the everyday, it’s easy to forget that we’re only where we are today because we’ve stood on the shoulders of past giants to achieve new heights in the present. Adelyn Price has been able to see the progression of the last century. Join Benjamin and Adelyn as they discuss progress, the past, and where things are taking us tomorrow.

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The Core of Life with Brad Davidson | Episode 131

It’s no revelation that people are very concerned with appearances. There’s no industry that capitalizes on this concern more than the fitness industry. Brad Davidson is a fitness instructor who knows what it’s like to chase the preconceived notions of physical perfection, but he also knows what blindly chasing those ideals can cost. He’s lost parts of his hair due to stress, battled a failing thyroid, and at one point had the testosterone of an ill 85-year-old man. After a near death experience, Brad learned to stop living for the “ideal” and to start living for himself. Join Benjamin and Brad as they discuss, physical appearance, the determination of training, and what it’s like to lie your way onto an Olympic Bobsled team.

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Clearing the Air with Adam Asher | Episode 130

First impressions are everything. But when Adam Asher hands someone a business card he’s either met with immediate kinship or eye-rolling disdain. Adam is a conservative talk radio producer, but as much as we would like to assume things about someone based on their occupation, how we make our livelihood is only a part of who we are. Adam is driven to challenge the status quo, and the idea of what can be learned when we dig a little deeper into the people around us. Join Benjamin as he talks with Adam about conservatism, liberalism, and the unspoken ideas that connect the two philosophies together.

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This is Your Brain on Purpose with Dr. Earl Henslin | Episode 129

Dr. Earl Henslin has written 10 books and put thousands of hours into his practice of improving the mental and emotional well-being of his patients, but he’s perfectly happy to attest that most of the ideas he implements in therapy aren’t what he learned in Med-School decades ago, they’re from our constantly evolving understanding of the brain. Today Benjamin sits down with Dr. Henslin to discuss the brain, and how it’s much more than just where our passing thoughts come from. Our dreams are tied to our brain, and accomplishing them can be dependent on how we take care of it.

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Flexing your Empathy with Edwin Rutsch | Episode 128

What is it that separates empathy and action? For some, it’s easier to remain focused on ourselves than it is to clue in to what’s going on with the folks around us. For others, we’re worried that by empathizing with others, we might somehow weaken our own ideals and perspectives. Edwin Rutsch has made it his mission in life to help teach what empathy is, and more importantly how to embrace it. Because it’s when we realize that we don’t have to abandon who we are to be with someone else, that something truly powerful can happen.

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A Life UnWritten with Harrison Scott Key | Episode 127

If scars are stories, Harrison Scott Key has more than enough to fill the books that he writes. Growing up in the south, he’s taken his share of licks and has come through each harrowing event with another funny story to tell. He contemplates life while washing kitchenware and feels that our uncertainty is what unities us. When Benjamin sits down to chat with Harrison, the two dive into humor, family, and many, many anecdotes. This is Harrison Scott Key.

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Thoughts on Vegas with Benjamin Mathes | Episode 126

For a city that was built on a foundation of distraction, in the aftermath of evil, Las Vegas is awake. The locals waited in line for eight hours to give blood. The city has started funds and efforts to house the families of the fallen who seek to come into the city to see the ones they lost. When Benjamin went free listening in the streets of Vegas, he talked with many people struggling to make sense of how they feel. Today we all pause to reflect on what it means to listen in times of anguish.

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Leadership In the Eye of the Hurricane with Kendra Kinnison | Episode 125

We only know how strong we are when being strong is our only choice. Kendra Kinnison has survived Hurricanes. Her most recent brush with tumultuous storms happened when Hurricane Harvey ripped through southern Texas. However, she finds her calling in helping leaders navigate personal hurricanes that can arise when we choose to make ourselves vulnerable to the responsibility of leading. When she sits down with Benjamin, the two dive into the process of how we can take the mantle of leadership regardless of position or occupation.

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The Reality of Reality TV with Matt Sprouse | Episode 124

They say to stick to what you know, and it seems like we do the same thing when it comes to what entertains us. We want the next big idea, while at the same time, we have a soft spot for the stories and formulas we’ve come to know and love. It’s hypocritical, but a reality of life. No one knows more about reality and television than Matt Sprouse. He’s a reality TV producer behind shows like Welcome to Myrtle Manor and Sons of Guns. In this episode he sits down with Benjamin to talk about what it’s like trying to capture life in front of the camera, while still shaping what’s unscripted into a story.

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Harnessing the Creative Economy with Benjamin Mathes | Episode 123

How do we release our need for control? It’s all too often that the hectic whims of the world seem to subject us to circumstances that we’d rather not be in. But usually, the most painful parts of those situations come from worrying about things we have no say over whatsover. In his time working with CEO’s and entrepreneurs, Benjamin has focused on two key concepts: The Career Matrix and the Creative Economy. In this episode, Benjamin unpacks these two ideas, and explores several elements that we can all use to improve our careers and our everyday lives.

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Healing Through Art with Damilola Apotieri | Episode 122

It’s possible to feel alone even when we’re surrounded by people, but one of the best ways to reach out and make a connection is by using art. When it seems society is spinning out of control, art can be used as a platform to pull us back together. Today Benjamin sits down with artist and activist Damilola Apotieri to discuss his belief that no matter the circumstance, where there is life, there is hope, and it’s art that can help us find it.

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Feeding on Feedback with Thomas Knox | Episode 121

Whenever we reach out, we open ourselves up to feedback. It can be positive or negative, but the concept of feedback alone can be daunting enough to some that it shuts down our willingness to communicate. Thomas Knox is the creator of Date While You Wait, and in the intimate settings he creates with strangers he’s constantly making himself vulnerable to feedback. When Ben sits down to chat with Thomas, they discuss everything from fashion, to family, to using the feedback we get from those around us to create even better things in the world.

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Turning Tragedy into Triumph, discussing Charlottesville with Pearce Godwin | Episode 120

In the wake of tragic events its easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of anger and confusion that almost assuredly follows. After the events of Charlottesville, it feels like tension has reached an all time high. In this episode, Ben sits down with Pearce Godwin of the Listen First Project to discuss what it's like to listen to those who only seem to spew hate to cover up their hurt.

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Standing by Our Principals by Challenging Our Perspective with Let. Gen. Jerry Boykin | Episode 119

Whether we agree with them or not, there are certain people who have done so much, and seen so much, that their perspective gives a palpable credence to their stories and beliefs. Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jerry Boykin is one of those people. He has served his country with valor and dignity, but as a man of faith, he’s also had to weigh his religious beliefs against his choices on the battlefield. When he sits down with Ben, the two discuss religion, violence and reconciliation. The conversations might be polarizing, but as always, it’s worth listening to.

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Bleeding for the Right Reasons with Linda Mathes | Episode 118

True courage is found when we prioritize the needs of others over the needs of ourselves. When that happens, it can inspire us to do the profound and daring. For Linda Mathes, it’s pushed her into the spotlight of leadership. She serves as the CEO to one of the most highly regarded non-profits in the world, The Red Cross. When she sits down with Benjamin to chat, she sheds light on what it means to lead, and what it means lead when millions of lives are affected by your decisions.

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Learning About Life from Death with Helena Walsh | Episode 117

It’s tough to speak of suffering. Helena Walsh is a renowned voice coach that’s worked with actors, entrepreneurs, and anyone seeking a greater understanding of person to person communication. But one subject that often gives all of us pause is pain. Join Ben and Helena as they discuss everything from accents, to language, before digging into the need to accept pain, while being available for those going through it.

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