& SELF-SABOTAGE EXPERT
...has inspired millions of people around the world as the found of Waking Times.
Sharing a powerful message of transformation, his incredible journey from addiction and self sabotage to shamanism and self mastery is an example of courage and personal responsibility.
As a certified FFSS self sabotage coach he has developed a reputation for his grounded, intuitive, and practical approach to mastering your emotional life and raising your consciousness.
For the first half of my life it felt like I was unconscious. I had no idea who I was, what I wanted, or what I needed to be happy. I did what everyone else was doing, and it nearly destroyed me.
And like many people, I had a traumatic childhood. Lots of anger, yelling, some physical abuse, and a never-ending feeling that everything would come crashing down around me at any moment.
It wasn't until I was in my 40's that I realized why I started drinking heavily at 15. It wasn't until I understood that the trauma left an imprint in my physical body, and every time something stressful happened, it triggered a deep sense of insecurity.
And not knowing what was happening to me, or what to do about it, I self-medicated to escape the emotional discomfort.
That worked well enough for about 10 years.
My dark night of the soul was ugly.
I remember coming to my senses one morning just before the sun came up. Sitting on the ground against the house on the back porch, all alone with a half empty bottle of gin by my side, I told myself I'd had enough.
I finally decided to get help.
So I did what most people do. I turned to the professionals.
Finally mustering the courage to tell someone about the suffering I'd been going through for years, I went to my family doctor. It took everything I had to speak. I was so embarrassed. After a minute he looked at his watch, told me I had depression, anxiety, and possibly even a personality disorder, grabbed his script pad, wrote me prescriptions for xanax and an antidepressant, then told me he'd get me an appointment with a leading local psychiatrist the following week.
The pharmacy couldn't fill the scripts fast enough, and when the xanax kicked in I popped an antidepressant and went back to work. Two hours later I was in a fog. I couldn't think clearly, I couldn't focus my eyes, I was spaced out, and it seemed like I was watching myself from the outside. I had to go home, and when I got there I called my doctor to tell of the horrible side-effects I was having.
"Don't worry, you'll get used to the side effects," he told me.
Red Flag number one.
Is it really a good idea to get used to feeling this way?!?
A few days later I arrived on time for a session with the head honcho of the local psychiatry board, but they didn't called me in to may appointment. Instead I sat there and waited another 45 minutes while several well-dressed pharmaceutical sales reps came and went, all seeming to have a backstage VIP pass to the shrink's inner sanctum. They were a higher priority than me..
Red Flag number two.
What kind of business is this?
Finally I was called in to sit with the big man, and big he was. Almost larger than life. His office was grand, plush, and well-decorated. He had an entire wall devoted to Vietnam war memorabilia next to a massive, gorgeous oak desk.
I'm naturally intuitive. I read people. I understand people, and I love MOST people, but this gentleman instantly rubbed me the wrong way which set us off on a very confrontational tone for the one hour visit that changed my life forever.
He wanted me to open up, to just jump right in and tell him everything.
But how on earth could I possibly just tell this guy everything right off the bat?
How could I tell him about my 5 year nightmare addiction to crystal meth?
How could I admit to him that even though I was happily married I had a serious addiction to porn?
How could I possibly tell him about the pills, the powders, the isolation, the booze, the pain, the guilt and the shame?
So we spent most of an hour testing each other.
Was he someone I could trust? Was I someone who would accept his remedy?
One of my super powers is saying the thing that everyone else is afraid to say. Sometimes this comes back to haunt me, but on this day I do believe it saved my life.
With sincere curiosity I said, "Doctor, how much money do you make?"
Dead-panned and with a thick tone of pride he huffed his chest, lifted his chin and said, "I make $450k a year. I have houses in Westlake Hills, Durango Colorado, and Chiapas Mexico. I have a Cessna 172 airplane, and drive a Mercedes S-Class."
"Impressive," I replied. "Tell me something else. I see you were involved in the Vietnam war. What was your role there?"
"I was a fighter bomber pilot," he said directly.
Without a moment's pause I looked him square in the eye and asked the big question, "how many people have you killed?"
If you've seen the classic film Apocalypse Now, you'll recall Colonel Kurtz. This good doctor was his spitting image, and with eyes as cold, black and dead as a shark's, the good doctor replied, "Thousands... Thousands."
Red Flag number three.
Am I really seeking guidance from a literal mass murderer?!?
Sitting face-to-face with a psychopath is a weird feeling. Especially when your life is on the edge and you've been told he's the one that can save. It doesn't add up.
We got back to the business of my visit, and although I had clammed up and told him next to nothing of my peril, he was confident enough with his minute diagnoses that he prescribed me seven different psychiatric medications to take everyday... for the rest of my life, he said.
Handing me a bag of free samples on my way out, we said our good byes. I walked out of the office and into the bright hot Texas sun and looked up into the sky, and an inner voice spoke to me with absolute clarity.
It told me to that there is no one on this planet who do the work I needed to do. That my well-being and happiness was one hundred percent my own personal responsibility. That if I wanted to live I had to choose to live.
So I immediately dumped all of his pills and scripts in the trash can in front of his office and walked solemnly to my car.
Two weeks later I walked into a Kung Fu dojo and began the physical, mental and spiritual training that would save my life and give me the chance to become the man I am today. The man I love. The man I'm proud of. The man who serves, shows up, and takes care of himself and others.
Coaching is a labor of love for me, but I didn't always understand how powerful my gift for it was.
I've always been fascinated by people, their stories, and things they've had to go through in to uncover the meaning of their lives, but I had to heal myself before I knew what I had to offer the world.
The work I do with clients is heavily informed by over a decade of experience working with the shamanic plant medicines iboga and ayahuasca.
In these settings I learned that life is not a healing journey.
We're not meant to spend our days in search of the magic cure or the secret code to life...
We're meant to heal ourselves and live!
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