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April 15, 2020 33 mins

If living in resistance to growth is your version of a comfort zone, personal development coach Mike Bayer, author of Best Self, says that's really your

"anti-self" holding you back. In this episode, he leads us through his five tenets for change and how to become our own interventionists. Learn more @CoachMikeBayer.

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Episode Transcript

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Speaker 1 (00:03):
We're going to just figure out is there healing in
it or not, so that like today, you can feel
compassion for yourself, because what I feel on you is
you're you're you're really being hard on yourself, and you
know you're being hard on yourself, but you can't start
being hard on yourself. And so I would go, Okay,
well can we tweak this a little bit, just show that,
like you have a little more relief. Thanks for joining

(00:32):
us on the road to somewhere where we talk about exploration, adventure,
major life change and transformation. It's about not necessarily knowing
where we're going, but having faith at the journey will
be worthwhile. I am Lisa and I am Jill Herzig
and um we talk a lot about obstacles on the
road to change. One of the things that comes up

(00:52):
again and again is that the obstacle can be inside us,
not so much outside us. Often. In fact, maybe that's
the main obstacle all the time. It's that like own
worst enemy thing. Boy do I know that one. We're
both relating very powerfully right now. We are, and thankfully
we have a guest today who might be able to

(01:12):
help us and our listeners with their mom. Yeah, well,
here he is. You are joined today by the New
York Times bestselling author Mike Bear. He is first book
is Best Self Be You Only Better. Welcome so much
to the podcast. Mike, Thank you, Thank you, Jill, thanks
for being with us. We are really grateful to have you.

(01:34):
I personally, I'm not only speaking for myself, but I
really need you. So I'm thinking of this as like
a private session, just publicly, publicly, most comfortable. So we're set,
So why don't you start by just telling us where
your own journey began? And you know how you are
a bit of a poster poster child for change, sure,

(01:57):
which definitely was never my intention. And you know, when
we grow up, we always kind of have these dreams
or aspirations, or they teach us in school that we
should have dreams and aspirations. And I thought I was
going to own like a bar or nail salan. Why.
I just thought as a business model. At the time,

(02:19):
I was like, oh, wow, that that makes a lot
of sense. I don't know what you know, you just
your kid, You're I grew up in Orange County, California.
I came from a good family, youngest of three, UM
kind of was very athletic and went to play college
basketball in New York. Um was kind of a trouble kid.
UM wasn't sure why. I had messages to myself that, uh,

(02:45):
we're a lot less than loving their kind, um. And
it could just be like the generational legacy of families
and how things get passed down and as kids we
carry whatever our parents went through, right, And I eventually
went to New York to Fordham in the Bronx, and
I went to play basketball there. But by the time

(03:07):
I went to New York, I had already been using
drugs for about four or five years. I started using
a drug called crystal meth. I had thought it was cocaine. Um.
I was kind of like a garbage can. Though. I
was kind of like, whatever you have, let me try it.
And I ended up dropping out of school, going into

(03:28):
treatment for the third time at two years old. And
at that point my parents wisely followed the direction of
the place I went to, which was, um, you need
to cut him off financially and he needs to rebuild
his life. And so I lived in Minnesota for two
and a half years. So I went from you know,

(03:49):
California to New York to suddenly being in Minnesota, and
UH learned how to show up for a job and
how to go to school and how to be responsible.
And and about six months into sobriety, I became a
counselor or attack. Really I did overnight shifts at UM
kind of treatment facilities and went to school and became

(04:11):
an alcohol and drug abuse counselor. And and then I
did interventions for many years. And I was really into
seeing the media change. So in the interventions, you really
see this dramatic shift where you're taking someone out of
their home environment who is just unwilling to change. And
then I created treatment center which I've had for fourteen years,

(04:35):
which is located in Los Angeles. It's called CAST Centers.
And things evolved. I started getting brought in to work
with entertainers and crises, So I worked a lot with
UM singers and people in entertainment, and that evolved into
me working with just talent overall. UM. In terms of

(04:56):
kind of my art, I would say is helping free
people to be their best selves. So I create a
lot of activities and I can create, you know, exercises
just in the moment based upon what I sent. Someone
would want to feel or want to do and and yeah,
I ended up getting an approached by Dr Phil to

(05:19):
which he says, high Lisa, Dr Phone Robin Bus say hi.
Well you see him say hi to with with these
techniques that you developed, Um, if someone is listening and saying, jeezus,
I have issues that I'm struggling with. Maybe not a
hard addiction, but I'm sure they can be. Your techniques
can be applied to any kind of dedictive behavior, and

(05:41):
they can't get to your clinic. What what are the
kind of tools that an average listener could start using
today to turn their life around. Yeah, So any of
the tools I have, they work for someone, whether they're
really high functioning and more high functioning than me, or
they're really struggling. So I create something that works for
that whole range. So most of the work I do

(06:05):
today is not specifically addiction. It's more like UM working
with companies and creating exercises for them. So, well, it's
so interesting. In your book, a lot of the anecdotes
aren't about people who are struggling with addiction at all.
They're really about people who were stuck in their lives
just need some sort of a kind of a violent

(06:26):
shove to get to get out over their stuff, you know,
like we always any of us if I were to say, okay,
what what's a problem that you want to shift in
your life today? It's how do we turn problems into
opportunities for growth? So the first step is just if
we view things just as heavy problems. We struggle in

(06:47):
that because our brains can't figure out well, what am
I supposed to be doing? Or like there's no roadmap right,
And I mean it depends a lot on what someone
feel stuck with. I think some common challenges for people
is they will go to the wrong people in their

(07:09):
life for the answers that they may need. There's kind
of this assumption that if somebody's our family or they're
are close friends is and they know us so well
that they're going to give us really clear good advice,
when really it's figuring out who in your life is
going to give you advice that you'll follow that direction

(07:29):
and you really trust. But I find I mean, I'm
I'm married to DRS. You can't get better health advice
than that, and I still struggle with applying it. So
I think a lot of people to disconnect isn't necessarily
with the advice they're getting, but living up to that advice.

(07:50):
So for for you for just to play you know,
life coach for okay, So what advice do you find
that is um the hardest for you to follow? Sticking
to any freaking diet, any diet, sticking to any diet?
And why do you want to stick to a diet?

(08:13):
I can give you twenty really good possibly really good reasons. Yeah,
what is your brain? Like? What is your brain? Go? Okay,
I need to go on a diet because if you're
totally honest with yourself, what is your brain saying? Um?
Because I could be so much better as in every
level of my life if this were not if I

(08:36):
were not, this were not my thing. What would better
look like? More disciplined, more reliable to myself and a
better example to my family? Um, more confident, healthier. There's
there's not an area of my life that would not
be improved by losing twenty pounds. So so the goal

(08:57):
would be to lose twenty pounds. Well, what's it's the start?
I mean, I'm just I'm asking just to help verify, Like, okay,
what is that? So that the motivation is it would
really increase, um, maybe your confidence and how your self
esteem and taking care of your body and your health

(09:22):
and longevity like that. It kind of isn't that. Yeah,
that's that's like the surface level. I mean there's a
whole other level beneath that, which is about you know, challenge,
being able to be self reliant, being able to live
up to my higher self, which you talk about. Best
self is one where we when we set a goal,

(09:43):
we can actually move towards that goal. We're not self sabotaging,
you know, we're not. Um, there are layers and I'm
like Shrek where actually, as he says, donkeys the parfait, right, No,
I think he's the onion. Yeah, layers and layers of
stuff around this. So yeah, but okay, so my question
is what, you know, what do you do to people

(10:04):
who are self sabotaging. It's not the the lack of information,
it's the it's the not using that information. Well, I
think it's first figuring out who is your best self.
We can do a little exercise if you want, Yeah,
can we can? We hold on a second, do that
exercise as soon as we come back. Yeah, okay, cool?
And then but only if you're going to do one

(10:25):
on jail too. You both we're going to do it. Yeah,
oh yeah, all right, when we come back, we're going
to dive into the exercise with Coach Mike. Before the break,

(10:45):
we were chatting with coach you like to be called
coach Mike, right, Coach coach Mike Barre, okay, and we're
talking about obstacles to change. Mine happens to be an
interior obstacle um of in resistance to positive change rather
than a lack of information. And so both going to

(11:06):
do this. We are Mike is going to walk us
through an exercise. So let's play. Alright, We're gonna walk
through an exercise and there's gonna be two parts to
this and anyone listening can do this and it works
with kids too or any age any issues. So first,
what I want you to write down is you're going
to write at the top of the page your best

(11:27):
self and the characteristics of who you are when you
know you're being your best self. So for some people
it's a struggle because their minds may constantly be critical
of themselves or um not allow it. But really what
makes you uniquely you? Um? So people will often put down.

(11:53):
You know, maybe they're when they're being their best there
zen or stress free or um compassionate or loving. Whatever
it is for you that you feel like, I'm really
in alignment right now. So what are some adjectives you
both have? We have to say them out loud to

(12:16):
all the world. You want me to go first of
the world. How many do we need to put down
as many come to your soul? You know whatever? Okay,
I feel so braggardly, all right, go ahead, you don't worry.
You're gonna have the sake of this exercise, and some
people be completely braggadocious. Yeah, I think we're gonna go

(12:37):
down a darker road in about a second. Don't worry,
you're you're you'll be able to run yourself down real soon. Alright,
So under mine, I have curious, open, joyful, physical, energized, loving, emotional,
and I don't know what the right term is engaged?
How about engaged? Okay? And you know when you feel

(12:59):
like that? For sure? Thank you? Mine are more obnoxious
than you're do it. Okay, smart, generous, creative, sexy and
funny ish, all true, all true? Gang okay, great, So next,
what you're gonna do is you're gonna draw a picture
of this character that you described, anything that comes to mind.

(13:23):
It could be a cloud, it could be a stick figure,
anything that you're like, this just is coming out of
my hand to the paper, um with what the characteristics
have just described. And there's no wrong way to do this.

(13:43):
And the great thing is everyone who does this you
have your own authentic creation where no one else is
going to draw the same picture. Really stick figure here,
really stick figure, and you're going to give it a name. So,

(14:04):
Lisa looks like you finished drawing, right, Yeah, let's see
what you have. Can you see that you have to
describe it? It's a mouth smiling yes, yeah, and it's
labeled smile. Okay, and what what can we name her?
I thought that was her name. Her name smile smile? Okay. Great,
So at the top of my best self is smile. Okay, okay,

(14:29):
and you do so I've just got like a bright
eyed stick figure version of myself, eyes wide open, arms
spread really wide, like a big hug. And my name
I'm using is Beanie, which was my nickname growing up,
because I do feel like as a kid I was
this thing more regularly. I think maybe is that the

(14:52):
case maybe for a lot of people. When you go
back to more of your child self to find this,
I mean, yeah, it's whatever journey your your brain goes
to where you're like, oh, yeah this, I know, I
know when I'm being smile or I know I'm being beanie.
And this is a great exercise for parents to see
emotionally also what's going on with their children. So the

(15:15):
children draw a picture of themselves when they're there in
their best and their best they describe it. Okay, so
we're and we're doing a very quick you know take
on this. Normally I would spend several hours. So next
we're going to create your anti self. So for you, Lisa,
I know that you already described yours a little bit um.

(15:37):
And when I say describe it, some of what I
heard was um. You know, I just can't. You just
can't seem to get that discipline in your life. It's
the voice, it's the conversation that takes place, the committee
in the head. And so you want to write out
everything that you feel today is shaped by what I

(16:01):
call your anti self. Okay, and the more you can
dig into it, the better, because then what we'll do
is we'll take these two exercises and then we'll work
through what we were just talking about. Um, this is easier,
it is for a lot of people. Why is that

(16:23):
that's sad? Because well, because we don't learn this in school,
We don't learn this growing up, we don't learn this
from our parents, were told this is how you should
be or shouldn't be. And but do you feel like
maybe the anti self just runs the show a little
more often and that's why I can get in touch
with with her and I'm drawing her and I'm naming
her too. Yeah, it definitely does. When people are extremely stuck,

(16:44):
or if they have addictions or you know, are really
things take hold of their life. But we can shift
it really quickly. So what what descriptions do we have
for your anti self? Whoever? Is kind of finish their list?
All right, I'm ready, impatient, overwhelmed, distracted, blamy, resentful, reactive, harsh,

(17:06):
and piste off cool. So now you're gonna draw that
with her? Whatever it is, it kind of looks like,
you know, the emoji that has the gritted teeth, the
big square of gritted teeth. It looks like that, except
the arms are crossed in front of me instead of
like the big open whoops, I cluck, cluck your mic,
but instead of the big open huge arms. Cool. So

(17:28):
what name can you give it? Oh? God, no, don't
emit God, I'm just gonna call her anti chill, anti
Jill because I think this's anti self things. It's catchy, Mike,
And how about you, Lisa, um, My anti self is procrastinating,

(17:50):
self sabotaging, undisciplined, anxious, and judgmental. Cool. And can you
create an image and a name for it? Can I
just have like a giant X that okay for an image? Yeah? Whatever, okay?
And what can we name it it? Bitch? So this

(18:12):
is this is the bitch Welcome to road to somewhere
with anti Jill and bitch. That's our title. It's gonna
be great, great, it's gonna catch on. And so now
let's look at whatever either one of you and Jill
you include. What is something that you see in your
your life today that you feel like, um, you're not

(18:35):
pleased with or not happy with or you which would
shift a little bit in your life. I wish that
with family I had more of that kind of open
I could stay in that open hearted space energized, listening,
tuned into them instead of in conflict, which sometimes happens

(18:58):
with some members of my family. I wish I could
just like, I feel like anti jail comes in and
screw things up there, okay, And so what would Beanie do? Um? Well,
I mean here I encounter a little problem because Beanie
also probably would have tried to please and fix things

(19:20):
and make people happy. And I think one of the
problems is that that is what has produced anti jail
a little bit um to follow. Like, like, spending years
like that being the pleaser and my family and being
the glue and trying to fix and heal and help
people through a lot of crap that we went through,

(19:41):
um eventually made me angry, closed off, overwhelmed. So anti
jail I think was born out of Beanie. Oh my god,
I feel like this is I'm going to need serious
because we're going to tweak your best self because your
best self is your most highest spiritual part of you.

(20:03):
So I would question, is your best self of people pleaser? Um? No? Actually, yes,
maybe that's the anti self. There you go, that's why
you're the coach and I am the podcast question ask her.
So let's say Beanie is not people pleasing. How would

(20:24):
how would Beanie handle your family? Honestly, I Beanie would
just kind of stand a little off to the side,
let it all happen, but also escape into our imagination
a little bit, like give herself an out. And that
would work for you, Yes, it would. I think it

(20:46):
would for me to be like, you know what, I
just need I need time outs from this. I can't
I can't get as intense as this is. And you
feel like that would set up less conflict and you're
getting sucked in and you yeah, And I also feel
like there is a very like, a very powerfully affectionate

(21:06):
side of me, and if I could just offer affection
instead of trying to fix things. Maybe you know that
I always go to my words, but it's interesting that
I've put in emotional, loving, physical, like maybe I just
need to lean harder on that, you know, than than
the words that try to blanket over and fill in

(21:28):
the potholes and help help help mm hmm, you're often
not able to help help help I find Yeah, And
and often we think that we're being at our best
when we're doing things that actually cause or struggle for us.
More like, yes, interesting because somewhere along the way you

(21:50):
were taught that love means doing A, B, C and D.
And then now you're giving that in your love and
you're like, hold on a second, am I getting burned
and it feel doesn't feel good as you just have
to reshift. Maybe you're how you show up in your
love with your family. I'm writing this down, okay, and Lisa,

(22:15):
should we get yours after the break? Let's do that,
my you're a mind reader and a life coach. Wow.
All right, when we come back, we're gonna fix me.

(22:35):
All right, before the break, we were fixing ourselves, fixing.
We've got coach Mike in the room who is fixing us.
We're helping us to become our best selves, which I
think we all want um. And so we've worked on
the jail a little bit and now we're gonna tweak me.
All right. I'm gonna walk out of this room my

(22:57):
best self, which you have the bitch that's my auntie.
And then the best self is smile. Okay, So how
would smile currently be dealing with the challenges of how

(23:17):
you want to do your physical wellness avoiding it? Smile
would oh no, smile? Oh? Smile. Smile would be UM
very engaged in present and doing things. And what does
Smile say to yourself when you are in this process?

(23:40):
Smile doesn't actually get to say anything because she's muzzled
and locked in a closet, and bitch takes over and
brings in a blue fog so that all decisions are
made out of compulsion rather than than an active choice.
And you bring up a good point. I think of
it like where there's a dinner table and there's eight

(24:00):
different types of people at the table, and over time, Um,
Smile gets muzzled, right, she doesn't even get a seat
at the table because all the other voices start to
take over and it just feels overwhelming, and oh, this
isn't gonna work, and Smile get the heck out of here.
You're just we're we're gonna do this and we're just
gonna keep going. And so it's how do we start

(24:23):
to get a structure in place? What what does Smile
need to charge more in your life? Like what do
you need? Nothing? I mean really need nothing, nothing exterior
or external? Um, I think maybe uh internally clarity it

(24:46):
is because it is and I don't I mean, you
study addiction. I don't study addiction, but it's it really
is a zombie brain. It's like, what I need is
just to wake the heck up, because like it's like
the zombie going ing to the refrigerator and there's no
stopping it. And so it's not it's not that I

(25:06):
What I would need is just to like be zapped
out of that trans trans addiction state. So what what
makes you feel like that part of you when you're
being your best self comes to life in your life?
What what activity are you doing? Having sex? Sexy is
part of smiles? Yeah? Um, sometimes talking with people who

(25:36):
just like blow my mind, like really smart, insightful, deep people. Um,
it's probably my favorite thing to do. Maybe not maybe
not more than sex, but close. Um. What about when
you're alone, um, reading really smart provocative people. Yeah, okay,
And what is your structure in your life? What do

(25:57):
you do the first thing in the morning? What do
you do before you go to bed? Um? First thing
in the morning, I look at my phone at what
time it is, um, which is not good, And then
I do some spiritual reading. Um, so that's before I
come out of my room. Um. Then I brush my
teeth and then before right before bed, um, I'll usually

(26:20):
be reading something or talking to my husband or something else.
Mm hmm. And this feeling of what you labeled this
the bitch? How long have you felt this in your life?
Forty years maybe longer? And do you remember if your

(26:41):
brain goes back, if you just like let it first memory?
When do you first feel like this was occurring for you? Definitely,
like by middle school? And what what did middle school
look like to very so small? I mean like small
community small in very small town. Everyone was like practically

(27:05):
related to each other. Um, it felt like a large
dysfunctional family. Okay. And do you remember why before middle
school you didn't think like this or feel this, and
then something happened in middle school that kind of started
to trigger Like, I don't think that it started in
middle middle school. I think it probably started before. That's
when I became more aware of it. I think I

(27:28):
think I was controlling negative emotion with addictive eating probably
before that, like self soothing with food. And why do
you think that what was going on that that became
a way to soothe Alright? Well, okay, so I think
I've had this conversation before when I was four, um My,

(27:51):
mom moved away because her father died for three months.
So I was with my two little sisters for three
and eighteen months with seventeen year old babysitter that we
didn't really know very well for three months because my
dad was a resident and he was on on call
every other night. So I think that underlying anxiety has

(28:12):
something to do with that. Um, because everything else has
been perfect. My life has been utterly charmed. Um. That
would be the only trauma I could I could point to.
And you think around that time is when you started
suthing with food, I would assume, so is if a
four year old you don't really have access to too
much else, and give me that mess. I had no

(28:34):
one giving me crystal meth okay, and and so which,
By the way, this is so normal, and we all
do it from time to time as we just it
becomes later where we become we beat ourselves up or
become a little jaded about our problems. Right, But it
starts off somewhere, and usually it starts from a place
where we're not having compassion for that part of us.

(28:57):
So for the listeners out there who've all just been
in on my price at therapy, session in this exercise,
now that they've identified there and I have, we have
identified our best self and our anti self, and we're
walking through how the origin of the anti self? Right?
Is it just about healing the anti self? The origin

(29:18):
of the anti anti self? Is that what this exercise
and about. I think this is just where I went
with you. Like if we were sitting down getting coffee,
I would I would be suddenly creating a whole scene
right where we're like, it's gonna look like the room
you grew up in, and we're gonna just figure out
is they're healing in it or not, so that like
today you can feel compassion for yourself, because what I
feel on you is you're you're you're really being hard

(29:40):
on yourself, and you know you're being hard on yourself,
but you can't step being hard on yourself. And so
I would go, Okay, well can we tweak this a
little bit just so that like you have a little
more relief because you're a beautiful woman, you have a
like you're obviously really smart, you're really there's so many
characteristics to you, and then this one area it seems

(30:00):
like you really are hard on yourself about and you
look great. So it's like, can I second this? This
is not I know and it actually are. What we're
saying right now is actually making it worse for her.
I know her well enough to know that I wanted
to be useful to the I'm just seconding it really

(30:21):
useful because that's that's this is all like, Look, it
never feels good when we have to open up our vulnerabilities.
App it's really uncomtable, especially over a podcast. So the
thing about the best self and the anti self is
we want to figure out a way to enhance our
best self, that part of us that gives us light

(30:42):
and and so usually it's about us figuring out what
structure is needed to light up that part of us.
And I with the anti self when we really dig in.
The reason why I like the drawings because it adds
a bit of humor in life to it because normally
we're so hard on ourselves and we add a little
bit of humor it kind of alleviates some of those

(31:04):
issues for ourselves. And so with your best self, what
I would say is if your best self was navigating
the situation for both of you, the results would be different.
If we were like, Okay, let's really figure out how
do you operate as your best self? Like I have
a giant wizard tattoo on my shoulder name and his
name is Merlin, and I operate as Merlin as much

(31:26):
as Yeah, it's huge, it's like literally covers my arm.
It's my actual eye I got. It's taken like seven
sessions to get it done, but I believe this so much.
And this is what I've done with clients for years.
And at first it just feels very much like, Okay,
what am I doing? I'm drawing and naming things, and
like why am I doing? Like where are we going
with this? But the truth is sometimes we had to

(31:47):
play a part of characters in order to do some
healing for ourselves because it's too hard. I like that idea, Joe,
Maybe we should schedule tattoos for after this. I'll just
stick withdrawing alright. But I I thank you so much,
and and I really think we've done some really interesting work.
And I do think that everybody should go out and

(32:08):
get your books so that they can unpack it and
do all this work. I'm going to finish reading it
rather more more thoroughly this time, um, because I think
it's really useful. UM. Coach Mike, thank you so much
for being with us today. Thank you, ladies, appreciate it.
So the book everyone out there is his original book

(32:28):
is Best Self, Be You only Better. And then the
new one is a workbook called Be Your Best Self,
and it really is very interactive, takes you through all
of these exercises outlining your best self and your anti
self and figuring out how to empower your best self
and and if anyone's gonna be locked in the closet,
let's let's stick anti self there. Let's take the bitch

(32:50):
in there. UM. For more info, everyone visit Coach Mike
bear dot com. Follow him at coach Mike Bearka. The
Road to Somewhere is recorded in New York City. Make
sure you share, subscribe, rate, and review us and let
us hear from you. Where are you on your journey?

(33:10):
Connect with us on Instagram and Twitter at pod to Somewhere.
Email us at road to Somewhere at iHeartMedia dot com.
Special thanks to our producer Alicia Haywood. Thanks for joining
us on the Road to Somewhere. Available on the I
Heart Radio app, on Apple Podcasts, or wherever you get
your podcasts,

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Lisa Oz

Lisa Oz

Jill Herzig

Jill Herzig

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