How to Love and Disagree


Not too long ago I was talking to someone in my family – I love her and I know she loves me. We had a great conversation, we laughed and shared stories as we caught up on one another’s lives.

At the end of the conversations, she says…

“Chad, I’m glad you’re happy even though I don’t approve of your lifestyle. Be sure to tell Pasha (my husband) that I said hello.”

The wires in my head short-circuited.

Even if she thought it, why would she choose to say that out loud to me after we just had an otherwise wonderful conversation?

I’ve been out to my family for more 20 years, I thought we were past all of this.

This got me thinking about love, beliefs, and disagreement.

Disagreements are not anomalous to relationships, they are an inevitability. So too are the beliefs that drive us individually and the potential for love between us all.

But how do you love someone who doesn’t agree with something that means so much to you? Or worse – what they disagree with is a part of who you are?

As an adult, all relationships are a choice. A choice to create space for another person in your life. Relationships are an agreement between two people to allow one another in their lives.

With all agreements, there are terms.

Those terms are different in every relationship. A generous person, who is most open to connection, makes those terms clear.

When those terms are violated, there are consequences.

Sometimes those consequences are an immediate reaction – a fight. Sometimes the consequences are more passive like the silence, space, and distance that can come between people.

What often creates these disagreements is a clashing of our beliefs. Whether that’s a clash of religious, political, social, or a simple belief in how people should treat one another.

The key to love through disagreement is to understand that your beliefs – all beliefs of any kind – are based on your life experience, the culture you live in, your fears, your defensive mechanisms, your superstition. Those factors are different for everyone – and therefore everyone carries around different beliefs.

Beliefs are attached to your ego.

Love is something completely different.

Love in relationship doesn’t allow one person to diminish the experience of another simply because their beliefs don’t align.

Love is the fullest expression of your self – and your willingness to allow others to do the same.

Love is an expression of your grace.

Love is the antidote to loneliness – because love is what allows real connection between you and another human being.

Love supersedes the ego.

Ultimately, how you love and disagree is a choice.

Will you disagree with dignity and decency?

Will you disagree with love and compassion?

Which is more important? Your beliefs or your love for this person?

Are your individual beliefs worthy of the collective consequences?

Chad Interviewed on the SpeakLOUD Podcast


Show Notes

Chad Peevy joins me today. He’s an Arkansas native who grew up in an abusive household in a small, rural town. In addition, Chad had to hide his sexuality and learn how to lean into his own truth as an adult.

Growing Up in Arkansas

Some kids grow up with book smarts, some kids grow up with street smarts. Chad had to stay off his dad’s radar at home and tried to manipulate his environment to create safety at school. “For me that meant staying small, quiet, and avoiding confrontation.” At school, he also had a girlfriend to avoid gay slurs and sat on the school council so teachers would like him and offer him a shield of protection. He was constantly shifting and changing to stay safe and wasn’t able to be himself because of his environment.

Changing Survival Skills in Adulthood

As a kid, those survival skills Chad created worked well, but as an adult, he needed to change his tactics with a different set of adult challenges. “I created a mask that I wore with beliefs and mindsets that developed out of necessity.” Although he was successful in business, he was miserable inside as he brought his childhood skills into adulthood. “I had to figure out what was going to make my life better as an adult.

Coming Out Gay

Chad realized at the age of five that he was different from other boys. Later on, as a teen, he realized he had stronger feelings towards boys than girls. Growing up in a fundamentalist baptist church, being gay was strongly looked down upon. “There was no healthy role model for me to grow into.” Today, Chad wants to give words and feelings to others in a similar situation as he was with his new book.

Listen in to find out how Chad came out in college, how he learned to be comfortable with himself, and how he is making an impact in the world today.

Resources Mentioned

• Get Chad’s book and grab a copy today!
• Join Me on Speak Loud Platform – Speak Loud Podcast on the web

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Want to see my brainwaves?

If you’re someone who meditates – or has ever tried – I bet you’ve asked yourself the question…. “Am I doing this right?” Even though I’ve been meditating for a lot of years, and I definitely feel that it does me good, I still wonder if I’m doing it right.

To answer that question, I bought a Muse to measure my brain waves. If you’re ready to take your meditation to the next level – you gotta check these things out. A Muse is an EEG machine that scans your brain while you meditate. Today I would like to share some of the things I’ve learned since I’ve been using it – and I’ll show you my brain scans.

You strap the device around your head and put on your headphones – here’s a picture of me this morning with the device and my noise-canceling headphone on.

When I’m ready to meditate, I open the Muse app on my phone and begin my session. I can choose a guided meditation or I can simply set the timer and go. When I first started I did opt for the guided sessions, now I just use the timer. I meditate for 20 minutes per session, and I do a morning and an afternoon session.

The Muse is connected to my iPhone – which is where I will see my scans at the end of my session. Those scans will reflect the amount of time I spent in an active, neutral, or calm state. The more active the brainwaves, the more intense the sound of rain I hear in my headphones – the calmer my brainwaves, the softer the rain. This biofeedback serves as an immediate indicator that allows me to bring my focus back to my practice if I’ve wandered off.

If I am able to maintain a calm state for an extended period of time, I hear birds chirping. More on the birds later.

A session readout looks something like this…on the left is my best session (calm 92% of the time), on the right is the one I just finished (too much thinking about what to write in this email and only 30% calm). I would say I average around 80% calm for most sessions.

Notice the vertical 3 bars – the lower waves are the calm states and the highest waves are the most active:


1) Our language is completely inadequate to describe the human experience. There’s just so much in the experience of being a human that can’t be put into words. I guess that’s why we admire the effort of poets. None of the reading I’ve done on meditation adequately reflects what I see in the brainwaves. For example…

2) Everyone says “focus on the breath.” I can tell you in my experience that focusing on anything causes an increase in brainwave activity. I am most calm when I think of nothing – or as I’ve seen described in Eastern philosophy, no-thing. Focussing on the breath, like counting exhales, or chanting “OMM” is a gimmick that helps re-center and recover a wandering mind – but it doesn’t sustain a state of calm. Eventually I find myself working to focus on the gimmick, and not sitting with an empty mind.

3) Morning meditation is more calm than afternoon meditation, but I find afternoon meditation more beneficial. An afternoon meditation when at least 25% calm will leave me more energetic. The more calm I can get, the more energetic I feel after. This has lead to fewer naps and less caffeine in the afternoon.

4) There is a direct connection between the tension in my body and the tension in my head. By allowing the body to fall into a deeper state of relaxation, the mind follows. In my experience, calm begins in the body and moves to the mind. I didn’t expect this to be my experience. It’s amazing how much unrealized tension we are carrying in our body.

5) I am able to achieve a longer duration of calm when my feet are touching the ground. It’s even better when I’m outside. I haven’t found any difference in sitting on a meditation pad (this is mine), sitting on the couch, sitting in my office chair, sitting in the bed. I can tell you that there is a difference though when my feet are grounded.

6) The Muse birds are bastards. The first bird always distracts me and lures me into trying to make more birds chirp. The more I try to make the birds chirp, the less they comply. This has made obvious the degree to which I try to control everything in my life. In life and in meditation, the more I let go and let things just happen, the more they just happen and turn out the way they are supposed to. Lesson for me right now is to allow the unconscious mind the opportunity to work for me. I want the conscious mind set the goal, and then get out of the way.

7) Yes, I’m doing it right and I didn’t need a machine to tell me that. Ultimately, meditation is about training the mind to be still – to make that little voice in there shut the hell up for a minute. I don’t need a Muse device to spit out pictures of my brainwaves – but it has certainly helped bring additional focus to my practice.

Until I can see you in person, stay healthy,

A Prayer for a Nation

Listen to the Podcast

Podcast Transcript

May God bless every family who has suffered the loss or illness of a loved one from COVID-19. May we all find within us the diligence to protect ourselves and the compassion to protect one another through this pandemic.

Bless every parent who has had to carry the extraordinary burden of turning their home into a classroom. May you be granted a gift of abundant love and patience.

Bless those who have lost their jobs and may this season of difficulty pass quickly for you. May those who prosper during these times be mindful, that as we get ahead, we are not doing so at the expense of those who are being left behind.

Bless every person of color. May hate, bigotry, and racism recede from these shores. May we all see and recognize our humanity in one another, and recommit ourselves as a nation proud of our diversity.

Bless our elders. May we never take your wisdom for granted, and always remember that it is on your shoulders that we build our future.

Bless every immigrant, we are all better for your decision to call this nation home and to make your life’s contribution an American one. May we never forget that it was once our ancestors, tired and poor, yearning to be free, who made this same journey to the promise of a better life. May we live in gratitude for their sacrifices, and their dreams for us, by ensuring that others have the opportunity to share in this American experiment.

Bless the public servant, from law enforcement to healthcare workers, and everyone in between whose dedication to country and to his fellow citizens guide his life’s work. Work that, when faithfully carried out, creates and maintains a fair and safe nation, one in which the rest of us can realize our potential and chase opportunity.

Bless every ally nation who has stood by us even when you had every reason to turn your back. Grant our adversaries the wisdom to know that their efforts to divide us will not prevail.

Bless everyone whose life experience has been overcome with fear and uncertainty while the stakes for living your truth were unclear. May we never forget that as countrymen we are bound by these shared ideals; that all people are created equal and we are all equal under the law, regardless of how we worship, how much money we have, or who we love.

Bless those families who have been divided by political disagreements. Grant us the patience and open minds to listen to one another. The grace to admit our mistakes. The humility to change our minds. And the love to forgive one another. Let us never forget that it’s the love we have for each other, in spite of our differences, that determine our strength as a person and as a people. Grant us each the resilience necessary to heal – and the wisdom to know that healing must happen first as a family and then as a nation.

Bless every person who fought, bled and died for this country. Bless the families who love and support them. May we, the beneficiaries of your noble sacrifice, be sufficient in our gratitude.

Bless our leaders. Give them the courage to serve all their constituents, to educate rather than placate, to communicate and not agitate. May they seek compromise over partisanship and may their words, deeds, and actions bring us together as one indivisible nation. May they help us more clearly see that which unifies us rather than that which divides us.

Bless and forgive those who forgot that decency, character, morality, and those values that define what it means to be an American, are more valuable than any amount of money or material gain. May we remember this day and always that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness is not up for debate, not a concession or a reward, is not reserved for a select few, but rather the promise made to all of us who pledge our allegiance.

Bless our country and all those who call it home. May we never forget that this country and the freedoms that it affords us isn’t just our greatest inheritance but also our greatest legacy, and may we as temporary stewards, leave it more just, more fair, and more free.


Finding The Present


As I cross over into my 40th year, I find myself celebrating life and reflecting. My reflections centered around the presence of my three ‘selves’; past, present, and future.


Through meditation and reflection I spend a lot of time trying to get into touch with that present-self. I find it extraordinarily difficult. Especially in times like these, the here and now can really suck. Here and now can feel like too much to handle.

So instead of staying in the present, I’ll engage in productive escapism to avoid it, like reading, walking the dog, cooking (I never cooked pre-COVID), or organizing. But I also avoid the present with destructive escapism, like napping too much, watching too much cable news, doom-scrolling on Twitter, or eating anything that isn’t moving. I avoid the present and my responsibility for my own life, my own happiness, and my own potential during these times, opting instead to blame, shame, and avoid.

It’s not like I don’t know what’s going on, it’s just that it’s really hard for those thoughts to convert into a course of better action. My growth is my responsibility, it’s not someone else’s job to make my life easier, or happier, or more meaningful – that’s my job.

Maturity and growth result from the transcendence of environmental support to self-support. As long as we look to our environment or other people to provide our happiness, our well-being, or to fulfill our potential for us – we remain powerless – at the mercy of our environment. I hate knowing this because that means that I have to grow up. And let’s tell the truth; none of us actually wants to grow up. It’s easier to see ourselves as a kid, in need of someone else to take care of us.

Honestly, I don’t even like to call myself a “man” – I prefer the word “guy.” Men have responsibilities and take ownership of their lives. Men help themselves and sometimes even help other people. Nah, it’s much easier to be one of the “guys.” Instead of taking action toward what I want it’s easier to just wait for someone to come along and do it for me. Then I’ll blame them when they inevitably don’t – or don’t do it the right way. It’s just so much easier to blame someone else for my problems rather than accept total responsibility for my own life.

The present – this is where grown-ups live. This is where mature people live. I spend most of my time avoiding it. I avoid it because again, I know things, I know that this present, this here and now is a result of my own creation. It is always my responsibility to create it. More responsibility? No thanks, I would rather escape to either the past or future.


In my past lives my troubled childhood – a part of my life defined by trauma. In my past lives a younger version that valued survival and self-protection more than anything else. For most of my life I’ve carried this idea with me that the reason for my troubles is because of my childhood trauma. In a linear time, cause and effect-based world, this makes a lot of sense. What happened then has to impact what is happening now. So I’ll tell myself things like:

It’s because of the trauma that I’m not able to connect with other people.

Loneliness and isolation are defense mechanisms, means by-which I protect myself from the evil I perceive lurking in the shadows of this world.

Keep yourself small to stay safe – go unheard and unseen.

I’ve told myself over the years that it’s my present and future self that has to appear and protect that younger, scared and vulnerable version of me. What I am waking up to though is just the opposite has happened; it is not the 40-year old that is protecting the younger version of me, it is the younger version of me protecting this 40-year old.

Yes, that little kid that still lives in me is playing a much different role than I’ve been aware of. It’s not the adult, present me that’s been calling a lot of the shots for much of my life, it’s been that little kid.

And why wouldn’t I let him? He’s a smart little kid. He knows how to sense danger, how to protect himself from it, how to hide, how to manipulate others to get what he needs, he figured out how to perform in order to survive. That little kid knew that if he put on a certain act, that he could avoid being picked on.

I’m finally awakening to the fact that so much of my life has been that act, a performance, scripted by a little kid.

My self-isolation – a performance.

Avoiding my email – a performance.

Napping more than is necessary – a performance.

Working too much – a performance.

What I do for a living – a performance.

That little kid even wrote some compelling lines like:

“I don’t feel like it,”
“I’ll get to it tomorrow.”
“They don’t understand me”
“I’m different and special”

These were lines written by a little kid figuring out how to survive. All of which are lies that allow me to escape reality and responsibility of the here and now. It’s not real. It’s all an act, a scripted response to an imaginary threat. It’s not spontaneous, it’s not vibrant, it’s not being alive.

I’ve learned over these years that I’ve carried my mom and dad with me throughout my life, even when they aren’t there. I haven’t spoken to my dad in more than a decade, but I have found substitutes for him through other people; bosses, clients, colleagues. It’s not uncommon to carry with us an image of our mother or father. We do that because when we can project a mother or father into our environment, it’s easier to see ourselves as the child. It’s easier to live our lives imagining that someone or something will come along and support us – save us – take care of us. As long as we sit in this fancy delusion we will continue to deny ourselves the opportunity for growth, maturity, connection, and ultimately aliveness.

Until we release our parents (either real or projected) we will continue to see ourselves as a child. This means to release them from blame and from responsibility. This means standing on our own two feet, fully supported by the strength of our present and fully capable adult self.


It’s not just our past self that shapes our environment, it’s our future selves too. We know this idea better as anxiety.

Anxiety is leaving the present moment, and standing in the gap between here and there, standing between the way things are and the way we want them to be, essentially stuck between reality and desire. Anxiety lets us torture ourselves as a protective mechanism; “If I hurt myself then you can’t hurt me.” Being in the future, plagued by anxiety, our bodies vibrate, or itch, our skin crawls, we get a headache, or shortness of breath. Our breath exists in this moment, it’s harder to catch it in the here and now when our mind is in the future.

And just like our past, our future self is really good at writing scripts for our lives. They too are performances designed to keep us small, cause us to avoid the present, and even create chaos for our lives. Sometimes we’ll do anything to avoid the here and now, even have a panic attack.

We’re so afraid of the present that we’ll create an artificial future to worry about just to avoid the here and now. Eventually we do some much protecting and avoiding that there’s no life left. We avoid living by hiding in front of the TV or in the bed, eating ourselves to death, or getting so high we are no longer tethered to the earth. We’ve protected ourselves by building our own cage, where we starve ourselves of what we really need.

Stuck because we might be judged.
Lonely because we might get hurt.
Small because we might fall.

All the while we grow older. Waiting for someone to come along and make us feel alive. Waiting for someone to give us permission to live. Abdicating the responsibility for our lives to someone who will never come.

Small. Quiet. Unseen and unheard. We are the walking dead.


So the question begs, what do I do now? How do I come alive? How do I connect to the present?

I think the answer is to practice. Practice bringing an awareness to that which exists only in this moment; your breath, how your body feels, what you hear, what you see, what you smell, what you feel. The key is to leave the interference and frustrations of the younger and future self out of your practice. Don’t bring them with you, only bring you in the here and now.

To my younger self, thank you for protecting me. You did an amazing job. Your job is done now and you can go.

To my future self – you aren’t real. My future isn’t yet written and so who I imagine is only fantasy.

I choose to see myself and the world for what it is.

I no longer need a performance to protect me. It’s more important for me to feel alive.

Without expectation of myself or of others, I am fully responsible for this existence as it is right here, right now.

I am that I am.

This is the present.

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

Fear of Success


Have you ever found yourself procrastinating and not really sure why you’re putting that thing off or maybe avoiding something and not really sure why you keep avoiding that thing? Well, today we’re going to talk about the fear of success.

No, I know it sounds crazy. The fear of success. How could you possibly be afraid of success? It makes absolutely no sense. I get it, and I was a skeptic too, but you know, fears had been around in my life for a very long time, longer than I care to admit. It more plays a more of a role in my life than I care to admit. And so I’ve always studied fear and I’ve always read about fear and try to understand it, and the more I grow and figure out about myself, the more I’ve tried to understand, okay, what exactly is this fear and fear of what exactly. Now the brother of fears of success is the fear of failure, right? If the fear of failure exist, and I think we can all agree that that’s a thing, we all get that right then it must hold true that the fear of success, the opposite must also be true and exist.

So what is it though? I never really understood. So when I would research this topic and try to understand it, what I would come across in this, first of all, this is very, very common. A lot of people have a fear of success. This is more common than you can believe. But what I were to read about other people’s stories, they would say things like, you know, if if I made more money, for example, they’d more money would mean that I would have more responsibility to be a good steward of that money. Or other people would expect things from me and they would expect me to take care of them because I would now have the resources to help it. And that, you know, the other example I would read is like a fear of promotion, uh, or, or a fear of success in a promotional setting.

So I’m not going to get that promotion because if I take that promotion, then that means it’s going to be more responsibility to the people that I work with. And that additional responsibility means that I might not have as much time to do the things that I want to be doing with my time, or I might not have, it might take away time from my family. And so subconsciously we would avoid the promotion or we to avoid the mate making more money because it would be a fear of, of that additional responsibility. Now I’d get right, I understand what that means, but it never really resonated for me. And I think that’s because when for better or worse, when someone demonstrates a need to me, I don’t really shy away from that. Like, if you can clearly articulate that you need something, I want to try to help people.I’m not afraid of that responsibility. So while I got what these other people were experiencing, how they were experiencing it, it just didn’t resonate with me. So I’m sitting in therapy and you know that I love therapy. I’m sitting in therapy and um, I start explaining to my therapist this thing that’s been going on with me and, and it’s like, you know, things are starting to fire more quickly for me. I’m starting to recognize the triggers, recognize why that person might, might make me feel that way and where that comes from and put it in place and know how to deal with it and know how to move forward. Right. I knowing why that situation causes me anxiety and I’m able to deal with it, recognize it and move forward. So things are really clicking. And so I asked my therapist, I’m like, Hey, what is this?

Is there a name for what I’m experiencing right now where things are just clicking things are, is firing on all cylinders for me? And he goes, well, he goes, you know, I don’t know if there’s really a name for it, but I understand what you’re saying. He says, that may mean, like he said that maybe a, what would be calling my world emotional maturation. And I got really excited about that because it was like, Oh my gosh, I’m maturing. I’m growing right there. This is all pay it off. And I got super excited about it, but I also, as soon as he said it, I said, okay, well when does therapy end? Whatever we done. And I think that that probably came off. It certainly sounded like a to my ear as in, um, well if we’ve done our job, this thing is over, let’s move on.

Right? But I love therapy and I, I’ve had people ask me, well, what are you going to stop therapy? Never. Right? I had no intentions of ever stopping. I really get a lot out of it. I like my therapist a lot. I get a lot out of the process, so I don’t want to stop. So why would I ask in that moment, Hey, when does all of this end? And what I’ve come to realize is when he said emotional maturation, to me, that was like, that represented a goal that represented a finish line that represented success. And so when he mentioned that it was success, I immediately got scared. Fear of this success. Because if I reached that success on the other end of that, I’m not sure what is going to happen. It creates a lot of uncertainty, uncertainty for me, if I were to achieve that goal and I didn’t like that, right?

Well, if I don’t have therapy, then what do I have? What do I do on Monday mornings if I don’t have therapy? Like who do I call when I have an issue? Right? If I don’t have therapy, how am I going to process and get feedback? All of these things start going through my mind, afraid of if I hit that goal, which he didn’t even say it was a goal. He was just like, it sounds like emotional moderation. I thought it was a goal. And so I immediately start into, well, what’s on the other side of that goal? And I got scared. So this immediately hit me. It’s like this is fear of success. So for me, and I’m speaking just for me, right? But the fear of success wasn’t about responsibility and additional responsibility that I read so much about and you can find so much about online.

But for me, achieving a goal and knowing what’s on the other side of it, the uncertainty of what’s on the other side of that goal is terrifying. Even though I want that goal, even though I want to achieve that thing, whether it be, you know, whatever it is in any area of my life, whatever that is, it creates anxiety about what’s next, right. What’s on the other side of that and that fear of uncertainty and what comes next overrides my, uh, you know, it’s, it’s almost like I sabotage the goal because that uncertainty is so dominating. Uh, it’s so dominant in my mind. So thinking of that, I, I always have to have a plan and I want to give you a plan. If you’re experiencing something like this or if this resonates with you, what do you do about that? And so I have a couple of ways that I think we can deal with it.

And the first one is, first of all, we have to recognize where it’s showing up for us. Okay. So there are three ways that I think that this shows up for us. One, are we procrastinating? Is there an area in our life where we’re like, keep putting that thing off. Keep putting that thing off. I’ll do it next year. I’ll do it next month. I’ll start that thing tomorrow. Are there things in our life that we keep procrastinating that we keep putting off? If so, I wonder if that’s a flag for if I do that, if I achieve it, if I get it done, what’s on the other side of it? So the first one is look for procrastination. The second things, something weird is happening outside. The second thing is avoidance or denial. So are we just pretending that that problem does not exist at all?

Is that how we’re coping with any issue that’s creeping up? Um, we’re just going to let it be, I think about earlier in my life. Debt, right? Accumulating credit card debt and thinking about, I’m just going to pretend that it doesn’t exist. If it doesn’t exist, I don’t have to deal with it. And that’s a weird way to think about what’s on the other side of it. But sometimes our identities become intertwined with our current state. And if we change that identity, we don’t know who to be on the other side of it. And they can show up in really, really weird places, right? That’s an odd place for that to show up. But sometimes our identity can gets so tied in to the way things that are that we avoid moving those things and changing those situations. How to fear of who would we be without that attached to our identity.

So are we avoiding, are we just pretending that that does not exist? And the third thing is overanalyzing. So is there something in your life that you’re not acting on or you think that you’re acting on? You’re telling yourself that you’re acting on it, but really all you’re doing is over analyzing you. Just trying to figure it out, trying to figure it out all in your head. So not doing much about it, right? But writing plan after plan, strategy after strategy, analyzing, analyzing over and over and over. So when those three things start to show up, I am putting it off. I’m pretending it doesn’t exist or I’m just analyzing the heck out of it. I wonder if those are red flags for if I achieve it. I’m afraid of what might come, whether that’s responsibility or if that’s a, in my case, a fear of uncertainty on what’s on the other side of that thing.

So those are the three areas where I say, all right, pay attention to what’s going on. If you’re seeing one of those three things, really pay attention to what’s happening there. Now, what happens once you realize, all right, there’s this thing, this is what I’m doing. How do I move past this? All right, I’ve got three different ideas for you for how to cope with that. So the first one is going to be to condition to your mind, condition, your mind, what to expect on the other side. So in my case where it’s uncertainty that I’m trying to avoid, create certainty for what’s on the other side. Now I’m silly things to make this happen. All right? So one of the things that I do is I’ve literally got on the internet and taken screenshots of what I want my life to look like once I’ve got a goal.

And so I’ll condition my mind to see, right? Actually see, this is what my surroundings will look like. This is what my life will look like. These are the things that I’m going to experience on the other side of achieving this goal. And so I get up in the morning and I meditate. This is why meditation and being intentional about our efforts are so important. Sorry. That’s why that’s so important is we have to condition our mind to see that and become certain in that thing. So I literally, when I, before I meditate, I’ll watch my little video. It’s like 48 seconds long. So I’ll watch my video where I see images of the life I’m going to be living, right? I’m creating certainty. I know what’s on the other side of this goal. It’s not scary enough. Familiar. I have pictures of it. Okay.

And they, and so that’s, that’s a little silly thing I do and then be intentional. I set intentions about what it’s going to be, so I create a gap, right? That’s also creating the gap, so I’m saying this is what my life is, this is where I want to go. I can see that when I achieved my goal, I am certain about what that’s going to become. Second, you have to create discipline around the focus that you have on your outcomes. Think about a flight of stairs. When we go down a flight of stairs with, without thinking about it, we just put one foot in front of the other and go down the stairs and we get to the bottom unharmed and uninjured, right? There are a million things that could go wrong walking down a flight of stairs, but we don’t focus on those, right?

We don’t focus on the potential of tripping on the first step. We don’t think about, well, we get to the fourth step. I’m going to fall in, break my nose. We don’t think about that. We just subconsciously see ourselves at the end of that 30 seconds of going down that flight of stairs being at the bottom of that flight of stairs. When we think about the goals and our lives and things that we want out of our lives, there are a million different things that can go wrong obviously, right? You could fail, fall on your face. Lots of things could go really, really wrong. And what I want to encourage you to do it start focusing on the thing that you actually want to happen, not on all the things that could happen. Be really disciplined and focused about what it is the outcome is that you want in your life.

The third thing, and I think that this is the most important, enlist other people in your journey. So I use Pasha for this all the time. When Pasha was growing up as a kid, he didn’t have this fear of change. He moved around a lot as a kid and so moving change met new friends, right? And so he doesn’t have this fear of success like I have. For me, change was scary. And so I lean on Pasha now and I, I am and list him in my journey. We set that journey together and we should do it more, but it certainly helps when I do reach out for him and ask for help and borrow his enthusiasm and borrow his vigor and borrow his, uh, the way that he embraces changed. So unless people in your journey who bring a different perspective to success and failure, this has been the fear of success. I hope that this served you. I hope that helped you. If it did, please share it with a friend, uh, and have a wonderful holiday. Take care of yourself.

What do you think? Leave a comment below!


My Podcasting Equipment

Listen to the podcast!

I get so excited when folks ask me about what podcast equipment I use – the thought of more good people sharing their stories and their message makes me super happy! I’m delighted to share my list of equipment. When you figure out how to be more consistent with podcasting – I hope you’ll share that secret with me! 😉

These are Amazon affiliate links, thanks for using them to order!

Microphones: Shure SM7B – I have multiple of these so that I can have multiple guests.
Mic Cords: Unbalanced cable – order 1 for each mic
Mic Stands: Hamilton Nu-Era Tabletop Mic Stand
Recorder: Zoom H6
Headphones (for me): I use the Boss noise cancelling headphones for me – I use these for personal use and for podcasts
Headphones (for guests): Behringer Wired – I use less expensive guests headphones.
Headphone Splitter: Belkin 5 Star Splitter – you’ll need this for all the headphones to plug into
SD Card: I use the SanDisk Extreme Pro
Editing: Adobe Audition
Travel Case: Pelican Foam Case
Batteries: I carry lots of AA batteries!
Podcast Hosting: Anchor.FM

Questions? Message me on Facebook or email

Good luck!

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

Off Script: Getting Better at Doing Therapy

Podcast Transcript


Hi, this is Chad Peevy. Thank you for listening and subscribing to my podcast. You’re listening today to an off-script episode and unlike some of the more audio documentary style episodes or interviews that you may be used to from me, off-script episodes are adjust me unfiltered and unedited, which may be a little scary. The topics for these episodes come from your questions, your comments, your worries and concerns. So if you would like to send in a question or topic for me to discuss on the podcast, you can send an email directly to me. My email address is

Thanks again for listening and I hope you enjoy the episode today.

We’re going to talk about a topic that I think a lot of folks are very uncomfortable talking about. And that is we’re going to talk about therapy. I have been seeing someone since I was in fourth grade, so it was way back in fourth grade that I started seeing like the school counselor.

And then periodically throughout childhood if I saw someone I would go that route. And then when I got to graduate school, I started seeing someone on a regular basis and I’ve been seeing that same person now for about 13 years. And today we’re going to talk about, if you’re in therapy or if you’re just curious about therapy. I’m hoping to give you a little bit of insight today, about that process and what it means to me and what it has done for me, not as a therapist, but as someone who’s been in therapy for a very, very long time. You know, one of the things that I was concerned about when I started very regularly in therapy and taking it seriously was why does it take me so long to get to the point? So I would go in for a therapy session and be sitting there for my 50 minute session and it would take me about 45 minutes to actually start talking about what it is that I felt like I needed to be talking about that day.

And then that quick five minutes would pass and my therapist would be like, okay, well we’ll pick up next week. And it was over. And I would get really, really frustrated that it took me so long to get to the point. I would spend the first five minutes just sort of him-hawing around the point and never really getting to it. I would talk about random shit that came in my head about what had happened during the week or who would upset me or what little events had taken place. But at that, about that 45 minute mark, I would really start digging in and things would come to my mind and start coming out of my mouth that I thought were gonna, that meant more. That was more substantive to what I was talking about. And so I want to share with you just a little bit about how I addressed that issue for myself and may give you some ideas for how you can start to look at it.

So therapy is not cheap. it’s a commitment. You go, I at least I go once a week. It is not cheap and I want to make sure that every time I go I get my money’s worth and that’s just my personality type, right. No matter what I’m doing, if I’m spending money on something, whether it’s a meal or a movie or therapy, I want to get my money’s worth like I want the maximum amount that I can get out of what I have paid for it. That’s really important to me and so I didn’t look at therapy any differently and I think that that was part of the frustration with me. I was like, okay, Chad, you’re spending this time, you’re spending this money and you’re not getting out of it what you’re putting in, so you need to work harder at this. I was beating myself up, which is probably another therapy session, but what I wound up doing was I started basically gamifying it and I don’t think I realized that I was doing it at the time, but I would start thinking, okay, it’s taking me 45 minutes to get to the point this week.

I’m going to go in and I want to try to be getting to the point within 40 minutes and then the next week or in the next month. All right, I’m getting to the point about 40 minutes and let’s see if I can back that up to 30 minutes in, I’m getting to the point and it’s gotten to the point now where I go in and as soon as I walk in, open the door, closed the door behind me, sit down, I’m going like I show up, they’re ready to work and I get going from minute one now. But it has taken me years to develop that skill to get to that place where I can just walk in and sit down and go. And there are a couple of things, more that I do to help with that. And listen, your therapy journey, like what you do at that time, that is completely your business and however you want to do it is completely up to you.

But I’m just sharing with you what my frustrations with were and what my experience has been. So take it or leave it. The other thing that I would notice this is when I would get in there, I wanted to get to the point quickly and now I’m doing that. And to do that I had to start thinking about all right, as I was going throughout my week or driving to my therapy session, I’m thinking the back of my head. Like, what are the real issues that I confronted over the course of this week that I need to talk about, that I need to get some perspective on. And so I don’t know if this is good therapeutic advice or not, but it has been my experience that I would go in and I would have like two or three things on my mind that I wanted to start with.

Like, so that I was getting to the point of something more quickly. That’s another one of the ways that I did that. So I would think consciously about getting in there, getting to work, getting my money’s worth, and having those two or three ideas in my head that I wanted to talk about. And sometimes, you know what, I would start with the first one, get going on that, and then my mind would, or my therapist would take me completely to another direction, which is fine because I’m into the zone quicker. I feel like I’m getting more benefit out of that time when that happens. So, I hope that helps. That’s the first thing. Why does it take so long to get to the point in therapy? What can I do about it? And also want to point out before we move on to the next idea here is that I’ve been seeing my person for a very long time.

So I stuck with somebody who I developed a relationship with, who I’ve developed trust with and that has allowed me to become more vulnerable. I think what I hear my friends talk about their therapy, sometimes I hear them talk about, well, this person may not work out. I’m gonna try to find somebody new. I actually think that’s a bad idea. Unless that therapist is giving you, really bad advice. I would be very hesitant to be therapist jumping because you need to develop that relationship and there’s probably something that you can learn from that person even if you’re not totally enjoying the hair action, there’s something to be learned about why you’re not enjoying that interaction. Why is it that what they’re saying to you is bothering you so badly? And you’re not gonna know that unless you stick it out.
So I think it’s really important that you stick with it, that you don’t therapist jump as soon as they tell you something that you don’t want to hear or ask you a question that you’re uncomfortable with answering. you owe it to yourself to explore all of those feelings about why that was uncomfortable, why you didn’t like that and really stick with it. You’re not doing yourself any favors in my opinion, by jumping around therapists. All right?

Point number two. When do I get to stop going to therapy. I have never seen on anybody’s wall a certificate of completion for therapy. And for me, I will be in therapy for the rest of my life. That is not because by the way, that I am mentally ill, that is not the case. I don’t consider myself someone who suffers from mental illness. Do I deal with depression and anxiety? Yes, I do. But am I suffering from chronic mental illness? No. What I am suffering from is the human condition. And by when I say suffering, I mean that like Victor Frankl talks about in his book, Man’s Search for Meaning. That’s the suffering that I’m talking about. And so as long as I’m alive, as long as I’m growing, as long as I am trying to become a better person, I need some help doing that. And you know, I have a personal trainer for my body. I have a business coach that helps me with business strategy and implementation. And I have a therapist that helps with my personal development. I have mentors for my personal development. I think that is just as important. But I think that oftentimes we think of going to a therapist that means that we’re somehow broken or that somehow that means that we need to be fixed.

I don’t think that way. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with me or anything that needs to be fixed. When I’m going to therapy, I’m getting another perspective. I’m asking someone else to give me another perspective on how I’m looking at my life or my situation. And that is extremely valuable to me. You know, we would never hesitate calling an electrician to fix an electrical problem in our house. We would never hesitate to call a plumber to fix the plumbing in our house. Why do we hesitate so much? Or why do we feel this shame or embarrassment for asking for help around something that is us? You know what I mean? Like this is us and for some reason we feel so much shame and embarrassment for addressing issues that we’re dealing with when that’s so important and so critical to, to your happiness and well-being and living a life of joy and being at peace and having relationships.

And why would you not get that help and why would you ever stop asking for that help? I have friends that will go to therapy periodically, right? I wonder how beneficial that is. It’s almost like, I don’t know what it’s like, but I’m not really sure that’s helping. And I think that’s part of the reason that people do that, and you’re welcome to email me and telling me how wrong I am, but I think part of the reason that people go periodically is because they don’t enjoy the process. I guess as if you don’t enjoy that process, you’re probably not enjoying the process of other parts of your life. We are a culture in a society that is addicted to destination. We want to hack our way there. We want to shortcut our way to the final place.

We want to go from A to Z and screw B and C and D and every other letter in-between. And I’m listening, this is this, I’m the master of wanting to hack my way to point Z or a move to point Z. But the point I want to make to you is that, therapy, your personal development, it is a process and by going periodically and periodically checking in, I don’t know that you’re reaping all the benefits that you could be reaping if you just stuck with the process and kept going and kept talking. Because you never really know when those, that out of alignment feeling is gonna hit you or are there things going on in your life that you need specific help with? Maybe if we stuck to the process, we wouldn’t have such extreme highs or extreme lows. And so I’m suggesting to you that I don’t think you’re ever going to stop therapy if you’re in it, at least I don’t think it’s a good idea.

For me, I should say I should qualify that. For me, I don’t think it’s a good idea to stop. I don’t think it’s a good idea that I stopped working out. I don’t think it’s a good idea that I stopped going to the gym or riding my bike or seeing my personal trainer. I don’t think it’s a good idea that I stopped eating right. I don’t think it’s a good idea that I stopped taking my vitamin D every Wednesday. Like there are things that we do that benefit us based on the process and the ritual and the habits that we form around doing that thing. I don’t think therapy’s any different. There you go. There you have it.

Point number three, this was kind of a game changer for me and I think it helps with 0.1 and 0.2. So when it comes to you going to therapy and when I say therapy, you know, you could also get this personal development type of help from a life coach. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. But what I like is a regular practice where you’re buying or committing and investing in your own personal development. If that comes in the form of a life coach, because that’s what you need. Fantastic. If that comes in the form of a therapist, perfect, whatever, go do that. But something that’s helping you develop personally and giving you that one on one attention and that extra perspective. Now, back to my point, are you a therapy or life coach client or are you a patient? And this was a really big revelation for me and a really big development in my own personal development. I think for a long time I was showing up to therapy with the idea that I was a patient and being a patient changes the power dynamics of a therapeutic relationship.

What do I mean by that? So one of the things that I learned about myself and therapy and one of the things that I work on a lot in therapy is my interpersonal relationship skills. And one of the things that I learned is that power dynamics play a big role in how I relate to other people. I’m very service based. I mean, I may not come off that way to those of you that know me, but I have a servant’s heart. And so I want to help. And so it’s easy for me to put people in control. Defer my power to them so that I can serve or if that’s not possible, that’s why you might see me do things like, and I was drum major of the razorback band. I was a drum major and school growing up, I will lead the group, right?

I emerge as the pack leader and I do that because it establishes a firm power dynamic. Uh, I understand what the power dynamics are when I’m in charge. I understand what the power dynamics are when you’re in charge, I understand how to behave in that situation. All right. Take that into a therapeutic relationship. In therapy I am in charge because I’m paying him to be there. I’m paying him. He’s the health for a lack of better expression. But Bri, he’s a close staffer at quasi employ, right. I’m paying for that service or is he in charge because he sits in the fancy chair. It’s his office. It’s his business. He’s the expert in the situation. For way too long. I did not understand how messy the power dynamics were. Confusing my relationship and how I related to my therapist and how I related to other people.

I think for a long time I really came in and thought of myself as a patient. Now if you’re a patient, I don’t know if you do this, I wouldn’t do this, but I wouldn’t go in and yell at my doctor. I wouldn’t say, Oh my God, you’re such an idiot. Why would you say that to me? Why did you do that? That’s probably not how we would behave as a patient. I mean, maybe we would, but typically probably not. Well, in a therapy, such situation where you’re supposed to expand and explore the range of your emotions, if you’re cutting yourself off from exploring that full range because you’ve created this power dynamic where you’re a patient, that you’re somehow sick or lesser than, then you’re not going to explore that full range. And so what clicked for me was I’m not his patient.

I am his client. And in a client situation, I think the power dynamics are much more even because yes, I am paying him to be there, but he’s also choosing to accept the money and to be in that situation. So I think that changed the dynamics for me and it allowed me to explore different parts of my relationship with my therapist because I didn’t view myself as someone who is sick or who was a patient. And I looked at it as I’m the client, right? He’s providing a professional service to me, no different than what my business coach provides. No different than what any professional service provider offers me. It also helped me understand that my therapist isn’t perfect, right? My therapist makes mistakes. They’re not perfect, but they can offer you perspective. And I think that when we consider ourselves their client and not their patient, it helps them understand, it more closely resembles the connections that we make outside of the therapy room when we’re able to do that. So changing the perspective from a client or am I a patient really opened my mind and allowed me to explore different emotions, different feelings around how I experienced my therapy sessions. All right, guys, this is my first off the script podcast where I didn’t have a script in front of me. I hope that you got something out of this. If you have a topic that you’d like for me to talk about, please send me an email I really hope this helps and I’m wishing you all the best.

I hope this episode was helpful to you. To learn more about me and my work, please visit me online. My website is and until next time, be well.

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

Hey, Gays, It’s Time to Grow Up


I once attended Austin Pride escorted by an armed bodyguard after receiving two death threats in the weeks leading up to the celebration. Am I some sort of gay hating bigot? No, I was president of the Austin Pride Foundation, and the threats were linked back to my own community.

Nearly 10 years ago, as founding president of the APF, I told the LGBT community that it was time to be more inclusive. Our community had been growing and thriving. One-by-one, states were passing legislation to legalize gay marriage. I and others felt that the shift in our culture was a call for a different kind of Pride celebration, a more inclusive one. More inclusive of people of faith, more inclusive of gay parents, more inclusive of allies, and more inclusive of those who don’t feel compelled to attach the whole of their identity to their sexuality. So Austin Pride 2010 reflected that viewpoint and those values.

For this, I was dragged through the digital streets.

Did I make mistakes back then? Sure I did. But when it comes to the core of my message, I was right, and I’m still right. We do need to be more inclusive. More inclusive of the diversity that spans our community and all the characteristics that make us who we are. That includes people who are young and old, white and brown, ‘more gay’ and ‘less gay’ than we are.

But here’s something else I’ve come to realize: as a community, we also need to grow up.

We are a diverse, multifaceted, wildly intelligent, and influential community. Our contributions are countless and our impact is immeasurable.

But we can also be petty, divisive, and sometimes downright cruel to one another. A cruelty that can exist all the way from communities of faith, to dating, to tribal stigmatization. We have plenty of folks who want to tear us down, deny us our rights, or dispose of us completely. We don’t need to do that to one another. We need to grow up.

I’m nothing like my brother, but I still love and respect him. You may not be anything like me or I like you, same idea.

We have made real progress toward achieving the rights and protections that we—and those whose shoulders on which we stand—have protested, lobbied, fought, and bled for. Yet our greater inclusion in the mainstream of culture brings with it a greater responsibility to ourselves, to our movement, and to those who will eventually follow in our footsteps.

The spotlight that is always on our community will burn especially bright this month. The things we do and say, and the way we represent ourselves on the celebration stage, won’t just earn us more likes or followers. Our words and actions will create impressions in the minds of the media, our young people, and our potential allies.

We have so much to celebrate this June. Legal protections have moved our way in several states. Colorado elected the first openly gay man to their governor’s office. Pete Buttigieg is the first openly gay Democratic presidential candidate—and he actually has a snowball’s chance!

As you celebrate this month, I hope you’ll celebrate what I called for nearly a decade ago—a celebration of the very best among us and within us. Bear in mind that doing so will require a level of maturity that recognizes that it is more important for the movement to be celebrated, than for an individual to be sensationalized.

Pride always makes me remember my own coming out. Growing up gay in rural Arkansas wasn’t easy. Coming out there even less so. I remember my fear, but I also remember the fear my parents had for me. The only impression they had of gay people was what they saw on television—not a flattering picture back then. I hope that, as we show our pride this month, we can offer today’s young person and his or her parents a better vision for what it means to be a member of our community.

What do you think? Leave a comment below!

Psychology: Internal Dialogue, Judgment, and Beliefs

Podcast Transcript

I need to go to Whole Foods.

I love apples. Do we have peanut butter.

I hope that client comes through this week.

Where is Pasha?

Bailey is acting older, I need a puppy.

I wish my knee would stop hurting.

Ugh, I feel fat. Put that peanut butter back and go for a run.

Internal dialogue – the ceaseless, ongoing conversation in our heads.

You see internal dialogue illustrated in cartoons, the character will have an angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other.

Oh, if only it were that simple.

The internal dialogue I have experienced is different than what is shown on screen, there’s no rational discussion between me, good, and evil. Are you kidding me? It’s more like me and the cast from “101 Dalmations.” Yappy, needy little voices, all in my head all competing for my attention, pulling me from one direction to the next.

Thought after thought popping into my head, some good, many unwelcome. They come and they go, here one second and gone the next.

This is Chad Peevy, thank you for listening to my podcast.

In the last podcast I talked about my practice in mindfulness, I shared with you the 4 practices that help me still my mind, one of them being meditation.

So, as I was thinking about this week’s podcast I wanted to try a little experiment.

I wanted to know how well I was meditating. I’m sure those of you who are mindfulness experts are going to have plenty of reasons to criticise me on this one and so to you I say, namaste.

My work flirts with the intersection of life and business. So while I’m always looking for personal development, I’m also looking for a return on my investment.

So I’m asking myself…

I’m meditating all day, putting in the time, I have to wonder…Am I getting better at this? How many times is my mind drifting off in thought as I try to calm my mind and stay in the present?

So I did what any rational person would do, I took to the internet.

I bought a hand-counter from Amazon, that kind you always see the bouncer holding at the door. 2 days later it shows up and I’m off to meditate.

I get into position, start the timer on my phone, and place the clicker in the palm of my hand.

“In and out, in and out, focus on the breath” I told myself.

Each time I had a thought that distracted me from focusing on the “in and out” of my breath, my thumb triggered the tally on the counter.

In my 12 minutes of meditation that day, I clicked the counter 48 times. Keep in mind this is the time I and trying to limit my random thoughts. The result? A new thought popped in my head, I acknowledged and recording it, every 15 seconds.

This was no scientific study by any means, I simply wanted to do a little self-monitoring, like stepping on a scale. And to be fair, at least of few of those thoughts were about the clicker itself.

So what does that tell me, what did I learn?

Well, my first take-away was, “dude, what a nerd”

My second thought was, “Chad, I think you’re really missing the point of meditation.”

But my third thought was, “wow! If I’m distracted by thought every 15 seconds while I’m in the act of calming my mind, what must that rate be during the regular course of my day?”

I don’t know, tracking and recording that would be a major task. And I couldn’t find any reputable scientific source to answer the question, so the mystery remains for me. But I can imagine that total daily number would dwarf the one from my little experiment.

That’s a lot of thinking. And all that thought is exhausting. By the way, did you know your brain only makes up about 2% of your total body weight, but consumes 20% of your energy? That’s why you can’t think straight when you’re hungry, your brain literally needs to be fed.

Can you imagine the impact on productivity that barrage of thoughts must have?

In the coaching program I authored, I define ‘psychology’ as the health of our internal dialogue. We will borrow that definition for the sake of today’s podcast. The health of our internal dialogue.

There is always a conversation going on inside of our heads, at least for us mere mortals.

Eckhart Tolle in his book “The Power of Now,” talks about a state of being wherein we are not the participants in that conversation, but rather observers of it. He goes on to suggest that we reach a level of being that allows us to essentially turn that conversation off when it is not in serving a purpose.

Tolle advocates the discovery of this state by intensely focusing one’s attention in the present. He speaks of focusing one’s attention on the mundane parts of our daily routine so that it essentially de-identifies you from your mind – and grounds you in the present.

I am drawn to the idea, it’s a seductive thought, to have a mind that activates on demand and stays focused on the here and now.

Easier said than done though, my friend.

While Tolle’s approach to one’s state of present mind is something I strive for, it’s not where I am nor is it where I started my journey to improving what we defined earlier as a healthy psychology.

In today’s podcast I want to share with you how I began my journey of taming un-useful thought patterns and I’ll share with you some tools to begin your own journey.

When we’re growing up, we are told – and we make up – stories that define who we are and how we view the world. These stories essentially become our worldview.

Many times, much of these worldview ideas are not based in reality. They are based on what someone told us or what we told ourselves – we believed it and never challenged the idea, and so it stuck.

Our worldview will manifest itself in our lives.

Simply put, what we think, we become.

When I realized that, it changed my life.

If you subscribe to that idea, the idea that what you think, you become, it gives you an enormous amount of personal power. It also requires a major dose of personal responsibility.

If my thoughts produced my current circumstances, then I have to take responsibility for my current circumstance.

And if my thoughts produced this, they can produce something else.

Too many people go through life though, and never take the time to reflect on their thoughts, actions or beliefs.

They go through life stuck in a pattern that is familiar, even if unsatisfying.

Many people never take the time to reflect on their belief system and ask simple questions like: Where does this thought come from? Why do I think that? Is this something that I truly believe, or was this thought passed to me by someone else?

These are simple but essential questions that a person who wants to thrive, must ask themselves and ask often. There is no greater influence on your happiness or success than your very own thoughts and beliefs.

I grew up in a fundamentalist christian church. I was taught to believe many things that weren’t congruent with my own experience. (I know that this example is extreme, but I believe it powerfully illustrates my point.)

I was a young man coming of age, taken to church every Sunday morning, Sunday night and Wednesday night.

I was taught a terrible belief system of hate and judgement that I believe did an enormous amount of damage to me and contributed greatly to my unhappiness as a young man.

I was so unhappy because of the incongruence that existed in my beliefs. I was taught that being gay was a sin – to hear them tell it – one of the greatest sins of all. I was taught that the “homosexual agenda” was one that was a great threat to our way of life. I was taught that gay people were disgusting, vile people who deserved nothing but an eternity of hell fire and brimstone. I was taught that gay people should all be sent away to a remote island so they couldn’t infect the rest of us.

I heard terrible things said about gay people. But what is most troubling to me and what has had the most profound impact was that, I wasn’t just hearing these things, I was also the one saying these things – from the pulpit of the church.

At some point I got it in my head that I was so damaged, the only way to repair and compensate was to go deeper into the beliefs I was being taught. I wouldn’t just internalize and adopt the belief but I would evangelize the message. If I could spew enough hatred then I would deflect attention and suspicion of myself.

I would study the book of Leviticus and then go to deliver a message to the church on the dreadful condition of the homosexual. If I could just hate myself enough, the gay had to go away.

I never made it through one of those talks without sobbing. I would stand there in front of the church, saying horrible things about gay people, crying my eyes out because I knew that I was one of them.

I was gay, I was this evil thing that I kept hearing about.

But here’s the thing: I had no role models. At that point in my life I had never met an openly gay person and as far as I could remember, never even seen one on TV.

I didn’t know that gay people were actually healthy, contributing members of society, even though many at the time were hiding their true identities.

I didn’t know that, all I knew was what I was hearing about them and then repeating in church.

It took me many years of challenging that belief system to get to a place where I wasn’t beating myself up for being gay. But if I’m honest, traces of that internalized homophobia still exists, I still get uncomfortable when I see two men or two women holding hands in public. It’s the strangest thing, I’m cheering for them in one part of my mind, and I’m scared for them in another.

So I continue to do the work and walk my own journey of acceptance for myself and others, and one day love.

I know this is an extreme example, but I want you to consider that when your internal dialogue, our worldview, the stories and conversations we tell ourselves are negative and judgemental, we are holding ourselves back from living fully.

Maybe it’s a belief that you’re not good enough.

Belief that you’re not ready.

Belief that if you leave an abusive marriage that you’ll never make it on your own.

Belief that you’ll never find the right person, that you’re meant to be alone.

Belief that you don’t have the time to work out or eat right.

Belief that you’re just meant to be a poor starving artist.

And my all time favorite, a belief that this is the way things are supposed to be, because this is just the way we’ve always done it.

How is your state of judgement, your beliefs, your internal dialogue contributing to the best version of you?

Challenging my beliefs was only one part of a healthier psychology. I also had to seek out role models, read books, and talk to people who were like me. Do you have a healthy psychology?

These are just a few examples of how our beliefs are manifest in our lives, but there are others that can also have an impact on our well-being and success.

Phrases that we grow up hearing that we perpetuate through our lives. Things like, “you can’t have it all,” “money doesn’t grow on trees,” “who do you think you are?”

One of the more overlooked lessons from Tolle is that we can be in observation, without being in judgement.

I grew up in small town Arkansas, I know all about judgement. It’s hard to see a person, a family, a situation and not be in judgement of it. But that was before you knew that you could simply observe without being in judgement.

It’s the judgement part that opens our minds up to an unhealthy internal dialogue – because who is impacted by your judgement – an inherently negative thought pattern? Is it the person or object of your judgement? Usually not. The damage of judgement falls on us.

I want to challenge you to try something this week….

I want you to make a decision to not be in judgement this week. This means refraining from judgement of what you see, hear or experience, and simply be in observation of it.

This also means not being in a state of judgement. A state wherein the thoughts and beliefs that you hold are cemented and unquestioned.

I want you to open yourself up this week to new possibilities, new friendships, new connections, new ideas, and new opportunities.

Simply be in observation. And then ask yourself questions.

Where does this thought come from? Why do I think that? Is this something that I truly believe, or was this thought passed to me by someone else? Does this thought serve me or sabotage me? Are these thoughts creating the future I want for myself? Do these thoughts reflect the person I want to be?

If you find in your life that you’re coming up short, if you know that you have more potential, you have more to give, you want to make a bigger impact and perhaps a bigger income, then examine your thinking. You may be stuck in a state of judgement. You may have an internal dialogue holding you back.

When you look at your life, you are looking at the result of your thoughts.

Consider how your thoughts and beliefs are impacting your relationships, career, health, money, your future, your very identity.

What have your thoughts gotten you so far?

If you’re not happy with what’s showing up in your life, it’s time to make some changes to your thoughts.

Maybe it’s time for some kindness, some forgiveness, some love – for yourself and others.

Maybe it’s time for some healing.

Maybe it’s time to confront and challenge your thoughts and beliefs.

Maybe it’s time to recognize that your mind is ruminating in negativing and judgement, only leading to your own misery.

Maybe it’s time to stop judgement and simply observe.

Maybe it’s time to replace the negative thoughts with thoughts that support and affirm you.

You don’t have to become Deepak Chopra or Eckhert Tolle to feel a little better. If you’re path is like mine where you deal with issues of depression or anxiety, making the leap from here to enlightenment is a long one.

There are things you can start to do today to ease your mind. A practice in mindfulness and an evaluation of your internal dialogue are great places to start.

I want to remind you today that these podcasts are not a substitute for the help of a mental health professional. There is no shame in asking for help if you need it.

I appreciate your listening. If you haven’t followed me on Facebook or Instagram, please do.

And if you could take a minute to give the podcast a positive rating, that would be really helpful for me.

Until next time, I’m Chad Peevy

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