Tony Loyd is a Leadership Development expert. He helps purpose-driven business leaders to thrive so that they can connect and contribute at deeper levels. Tony Loyd is a best-selling author, keynote speaker, and coach. He is the host of the podcast Social Entrepreneur where he shares positive stories from underrepresented voices, focused on solutions. Social Entrepreneur is downloaded more than half a million times in over 180 countries. He is a TEDx speaker and the best-selling author of Crazy Good Advice: 10 Lessons Learned from 150 Leading Social Entrepreneurs. He is a former Fortune 500 executive with companies such as John Deere, Medtronic, and Buffalo Wild Wings. He has extensive experience in strategic planning, talent management, and leadership development.
“I cannot succeed at connecting and succeed at contributing if i am not taking care of thriving” Tony Loyd is a best-selling author, keynote speaker, and coach. He helps purpose-driven business leaders to thrive so that they can connect and contribute at deeper levels. In 2018 Tony’s friend asked him  'How are you?’ ~ For the first time Tony chose to admit to his current state of depression. This realisation led him to many moments of despair and overwhelm, but after being introduced to Johann Hari’s - The Lost Connections , Tony realised that the hope for a better future was actually within his control, off the back of this he committed himself to living a year of personal bests. We discuss topics such as: The impact of family dynamics on later life Coping with violence in the home Resilience - Are we born with it or do we develop it? Developing a growth mindset Holding a mirror up to ourselves Admitting to depression Taking action over the cause of depression Showing up & being fully you Creating boundaries to protect our wellbeing Thrive, Connect, Contribute Practicing self reflection Remembering to focus and invest in ourselves - Thrive First! You can grab yourself a FREE copy of Tony’s Best Selling  book-  Crazy Good Advice by emailing Tony via his website and mentioning ‘ADVERSITY TO ADVANTAGE’ Connect with Tony further on the following social platforms Facebook: Instagram: LinkedIn: Twitter: YouTube:
Today I had the pleasure of speaking with Tony Loyd about his amazing journey in 2019 that he calls “The year of personal best”. It all started with a question from a close friend - it is a question that we ask each other daily but on most occasion it doesn’t resonate within us where we can answer it honestly… and if we were challenged to answer honestly would we be able to heed the call that forces us to change our lives. Tony calls this change Agency - it places the responsibility for our lives and actions back on us. It means we need to take the steering wheel and drive because waiting around for someone else to do it means that we probably won’t end up with the life that we want in the end. Listen to Tony’s Year of Personal Best and how he created 3 distinct area’s to improve his life with 10 subcategories to measure the results of each specific area. Tony has so much to teach us in today’s podcast. Make sure to check out his book and website to learn more about how you can incorporate his ideas and framework for living your own life of personal best. Website: Business coaching: A book that Tony says helped him reexaime his own life is: Lost Connections: Why You’re Depressed and How to Find Hope by Johann Hari:
Jay: Hello. My name is Jay Walter, and this is rebuilding. Oliver Wendell Holmes said, a mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions. So let's stretch our minds, find answers to problems, overcome fears, and rebuild our first kingdom. Welcome to another episode of rebuilding. I'm your host Jay Walter. Today we have a very special guest. His name is Tony Lloyd. Tony Lloyd is a TEDx speaker, podcast host and bestselling author of crazy good advice. 10 lessons learned from 150 leading social entrepreneurs. He is a former fortune 500 executive with extensive experience in strategic planning, talent management and leadership development. Tony is the host of the podcast social entrepreneur where he shares positive stories from under represented voices focused on solutions. Welcome, Tony. I appreciate you spending some time with me today. Tony: Well, thanks for having me on, Jay. I really appreciate you having me. Jay: Oh, it's always nice to have a, another voice and another point of view on things about, uh, rebuilding or, or, uh, taking charge of your life. Yeah, so, exactly. So tell me a little bit about what makes Tony, Tony? Tony: Uh, well, besides the insanity, I guess. Uh, so I, you know, I think in the, in the spirit of rebuilding, um, I, I had a corporate career and I, um, was, uh, you know, vice president in charge of learning and development talent, uh, talent development, uh, all those kinds of things. And I, I kinda came to this point where I thought, you know, it seems that corporations are focusing primarily on shareholder value, uh, in sometimes we as corporate executives, we do that to the exclusion of other important stakeholders like our employees or like the planet we live on. Right? And so, so I, uh, I, I kinda had a little existential crisis. Uh, this was several years ago. And so I made the decision to leave my corporate life and to go out and to do something else. Um, so I, I've had some, some fits and starts in different things that I've tried. Tony: I tried a little consulting work, but honestly, nobody cared because I really wasn't, I wasn't that differentiated from any other consultant that they could've hired. Uh, and I did a few other things, but one of the things I started doing was I started writing a book and while I was writing the book, I started interviewing people. And as I was interviewing people, uh, I came to believe that the, the, the audio files of the interviews would be highly valuable to people. So that's when I started looking into podcasting and I started the podcast and it's really, the podcast is called social entrepreneur, but it's really about, um, you know, how businesses use the power of business to do social good. So that, that was my, uh, you know, my launch of that. And, you know, today we're heard in over 180 countries. We just passed half a million downloads. Tony: Uh, and so, you know, at some level, uh, we've had great success. Right? Yeah. But, but about a year ago, I was really struggling with like the big questions. Right. You know, well, the simple questions, things like, you know, what's the meaning of life, you know, if you've got the answer to that one is a pretty good answer. Right. So, so, um, you know, I, I really had kind of a crisis of the soul in a way where I was just, I was really struggling with what's kind of the point, right? So I, I, I go to sleep, I wake up in the morning, I eat some food to provide calories so I can go out and go for a run and maybe do some work during the day. And whether I do that work or I don't do that work, you know, not a lot of people notice if I, if I produce an episode today or I don't produce an episode today, you know, people, people aren't gonna lose sleep over that. Tony: So, uh, it's surprising to me to know that I am not the center of their universe. So, uh, so, you know, at some point, um, you start kind of thinking, what is the point of all this? You know, that, that I, you know, I take in calories to burn calories to do stuff, to get to bed so I can go to sleep. So I can wake up tomorrow so I can go do that thing again. Right. And, and so that was a, about a year ago, well, it was actually December, 2018 when I really kinda had, um, a pretty strong awakening to that question. Like, what am I here for? What's, what's the purpose of life? Um, you know, why are we here on earth? And so that was a, that was a beginning of this journey that we're going to talk about a little bit, but I'll, I'll just kind of pause there and figure out if you have any questions about that or comments. Jay: Well, my, my question, that thing we talk about most of the time is, uh, when you make big changes like this, there's gotta be some fear of the unknown. And how did you kind of face that or overcome that fear and, and, and start overcoming these obstacles and, and questions in your mind? Tony: Yeah. Um, you know, I, uh, I had, uh, had a breakfast meeting with a friend of mine. His name's Michael. Very, very good guy. I'm going to owe him for the rest of my life. Um, but, um, you know, he asked me how things were going and I just sort of told him I'm kind of struggling with these existential questions. And, and, and what he recognized in me was he recognized anxiety and he recognized depression. And, and, and so he made a recommendation about a book, uh, and the book is called lost connections. It's by a guy named Johann Hari. And I highly recommend this book. Uh, I'll send you some links to that if you want. But, um, Johann Hari, he did a, uh, uh, multi-year investigation into the causes of, uh, depression and anxiety. And when, when my friend Michael said to me, he said, you know, it seems to me that you're depressed. Tony: And I said, you know, I think I am because I'm, you know, any, so why, why do you think that you are depressed? I said, you know, actually it, you know, I have a pretty good life, you know, I mean, really, I live this life of privilege. Uh, so I really don't, I felt guilty for feeling depressed, right? I, I felt like, uh, I almost don't have the right to be depressed. Uh, you know, I have a good family. I have a good, uh, you know, income I have, you know, lots of everything is working in my life. So I kinda felt guilty for feeling depressed. Right. Um, but, um, this Johann Hari he found, Oh, in what I said to Michael, I said to him what I had been said to me many times, which is, well, my brain is low on serotonin and it's a natural cycle thing for me and I probably need just some more sunshine. Tony: And maybe, um, you know, I'm not going to take Prozac right now, but I might take us some st John's worked and you know, maybe get my brain back in balance. And so he said, well, let me, let me just send you this, uh, interview with this guy, Johann Hari. And it was on a podcast by a guy named ritual. Uh, and Johann talked about his book lost connection and he had found nine different causes of anxiety and depression and only two of them had anything to do with your genes or your brain chemistry. So he had found that things like, uh, being disconnected for meaningful work or being disconnected from other people or being disconnected from, um, you know, from status and respect or the natural world. And he found all these different causes for anxiety and depression. Wow. And, and so it was really interesting because the story I thought I understood about anxiety and depression wasn't true. Tony: Um, and that there were these, these other things that contributed to, um, to these feelings. So what I did was I said, okay, look, a lot of these things are within my control that I have agency. I don't have to sit here and continue to live where I'm at. So I made this decision that I was going to live my best year ever in 2019. I just said, that's it. I, I'm just gonna, uh, live a year of personal best. And, um, so, so I, I, that's what I made up my mind to do. That's what I did in the last year in, I'll just pause here and let you ask any questions or, or have any reflections. So w how, how do you deem what your best year is? What, what makes you think that this is your best year? Did you read my notes? Cause I, I, you know, it's like you cued me up exactly for what I wanted to talk about. Tony: Um, so the, you know, I think that was a big, uh, question for me. So if I live my best year ever, what would that look like? And if I did, how would I know? Right, right. How do you measure your best year? Um, and so, um, I, I have every year what I do is I do this, um, self-assessment and it, it's made up of these, um, and it's based on a book by Michael, uh, Michael Hyatt and Daniel Harkavy. And the name of the book is living forward. And, um, and so, uh, Michael Hyatt has this sort of self assessment that goes with that. And I've been doing it every year, uh, 2017 in January, 2018, 2019. Uh, and I did it again at the end of 2019 to say, you know, how am I doing? And so, um, what they have is they have what they call their three circles of life. Tony: So the circle of beam and within the circle of being, it's like, you know, your internal self. And so, um, it, it's your physicality, it's your emotionality, it's your intellectual. Um, it's your spiritual. So you know, physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, those are all about who you are, how you are in the world. Then there's a life circle of relating. That's the second circle relating. And so relating is about marriage, fuel, parental and societal. Okay. And then there is the circle of doing, so that's vocational, avocational and financial. And so they have these three circles. And altogether within those three circles, they have these 10 domains. And so it's like on a scale of, and this is an odd number on a scale of one to 12, where are you? And the reason they go one to 12 is they have four core tiles, right? You know, a 25%, 50%, 75% and 100%. Tony: And within each of those they have kind of a high, medium and low. And so you can, you can grade yourself. Um, and it's a self assessment, but you can assess yourself against these, um, these 12 areas. Uh, I'm sorry, these 10 domains within three circles on a scale of one to 12. And so that's what I did. I have done that at the beginning of every year. And it just so happened right after I met with Michael, my friend who talked to me about, you know, depression and anxiety and all that. Um, he, he said, look, you know, um, here's this book by Johann Hari. It's about these different causes of depression. I made the decision that I had some advocacy that some agency that I could do some things about it. And so my measurement to begin all that at the beginning of the year was this, this lifestyle, if you will. Jay: Yeah. Okay. So that, that sounds very similar to our five kingdoms that, uh, I kind of told you about the, the inner-self that, the spiritual connection with deity and then your family and friends and associates, and then the world, how you affect all of those. And so, yeah, that sounds like a, um, an excellent way to, to really judge where you are when you start and where you are when you finish. So at the end of 2019, when you did that assessment, how did it turn out? Tony: Well, it was, it was a, it was really good. Um, so in those 10 areas, I had grown in my self assessment about 10% across all of them. And, um, and so let me just take one of those as an example. So in, uh, 2019 in physical, one of the things that I did was I said, okay, I need to get some sleep. And, um, you know, one of the things about if you, if you say, you know, what am I really trying to do here? I'm really trying to thrive, right? Um, I'm trying to thrive. And so, uh, I love Aryana Huffington's work on thrive and one of her main things like her only thing almost is just, you know, get some sleep, get a good night's sleep. And honestly, I think that I had forgotten, you know, I had, I had this global role in fortune 500 companies and I had flown all over the world and I do these phone calls in the middle of the night, in the middle of the morning and all this. Tony: And it had actually been years since I've really had a string of decent sleep. And just that one thing alone, just making a decision that I'm going to measure how much I sleep each night and I get, I, I got a Garmin watch and I wear to bed and you know, it tells me how much deep sleep I got, REM sleep. I go, Oh, you've got the fit, fit, fit, fit. Yeah. And so, you know, just if you take nothing else and you, you know, for me, if I took nothing else, if I did nothing else physically, that was a huge change maker. Okay. Um, I also, I, I really got serious about running, uh, in 2019, I ran 1,790 miles, which is the equivalent of running from Minneapolis to Miami. Now, um, uh, some people have told me that, you know, they could run that far if a bear was chasing them. Tony: Right. But, uh, but for me, I enjoy running and, and part of the running, you know, if you think about these different things of being connected, being connected to nature is a big part of that. Uh, I run with a group, so I get social connections with that. And, and so there are all these different things. Running is almost like, it's almost like an analogy. It's almost like a metaphor for all these other things that I do in life and it's connected to every other area of my life. Um, and I was, uh, I was using, there's a, uh, an app called Strava, S T R, a, V, a Strava, and it's for people who bike and run and walk and hike and all that. And you can upload your workouts to Strava and it will keep track of it, but it also calculates, for example, your fitness level based on heart rate effort, you know, respiration during exercise, et cetera. Tony: And according to Strava, Strava said that across 2019, my fitness level went up 218%. Wow. Yeah. Um, the other thing, you know, and we're just focused right now on physical, the other thing that I did last year was I started a plant based diet. So I made the decision that I wanted to, uh, eat whole foods and to eat Plains. Um, there's a guy, um, I can't think of his name, right. Nobody wrote a book called in defense of food. And, uh, he said at the beginning of his book, he said, you know, I could have written this entire book on a three by five index card because my advice about food is eat food, not too much. Mostly plants. That's his advice. Yeah. And, and, and he said, but we've forgotten what food is, you know, we, uh, doesn't come in a box. Yeah. Excuse me. Tony: Yes, exactly. Exactly. Pardon me. While I cough here, I'm talking about how well I did physically and on the coffee. Um, but uh, based on, you know, my diet, my exercise and everything, my LDL levels are down 29% for the year. Triglycerides are down 38%, cholesterol is down 40%. And my white was down 16.4 pounds. So, you know, in each of these areas of my life, I spent time saying, how do I really, um, you know, uh, live my best year. And so that's, that's an example on a physical. And so I could take any one of these and sort of talk about what did I do and how did I do it? But really it's about understanding that you have agency that you have choices to make, um, and that you get to make them Jay: well, that's, that's uh, what I like to talk about all the time is that you have choices. You're the one that makes those choices. You're, nobody makes you offended. You choose to be offended. Nobody makes you mad. You choose to be mad. No one makes you fat. You choose to put food in your mouth like I do every day. And you know, that's one of my struggles and one of the things I have issues with, but, but yeah, we all have this agency, this, this ability to choose. That's what makes us, I guess, different from many of the creatures on this, this planet. We choose what we do to the planet and to ourselves and to things around us, our environment. Tony: Yeah. You know, it's, it's interesting Jay. Um, I think that, uh, especially, uh, uh, in our, my dog is trying to get in my lap here. He's be crazy. Give me a bud. Um, alright. So, um, one of the things that I was thinking about when I was thinking about, you know, how do I get started on this, uh, is really kind of this, um, cycle of despair or cycle of positive habits. And so, um, the cycle of despair, the way I think about it is, uh, you know, thoughts lead to choices, lead to behaviors, lead to feelings and those thoughts, they, they impact the choices we make, the choices we make, they impact the behaviors we do. And then when we do certain behaviors, they create feelings. And those feelings reinforce the same thoughts and behaviors, thoughts, choices, and behaviors, right? So we get stuck in these cycles where again, and again, we're just doing the same things over and over again. Tony: Um, and I heard recently, um, uh, there was a guy named Joe, I think his name's Joe Dispenza. He has a, uh, video series called rewired. Um, and, and I don't know that I do or do not recommend that video series, but it was interesting, right? You know, uh, but one of the things he said I thought was really interesting is, uh, the average human thinks between 60 and 70,000 thoughts per day. And about 95% of those thoughts are the exact same thoughts that she or he thought yesterday. So we think about it like, you know, where are my car keys? I'm hungry, you know, uh, where's the dog? What's he doing right now? You know, is it time to go for a walk? Uh, you know, so, so we become habitualized as human beings. And, and part of breaking through part of, uh, of contributing in a bigger way is we, uh, we have to break that thought pattern first, right? Tony: And then that leads to new choices, new behaviors and new feelings. Um, you know, as I, as I circle back kinda to that, you know, the big questions about why are we here on earth? To me it's, we're here to connect and we are here to contribute, right? That Walt Whitman about, you know, you, you have a chance to, to, um, provide a verse, right? Right. You, you, you get to, you get to contribute a verse. That's it. Um, excuse me. And so, um, we're here to connect with one another and we're here to contribute. But to do that, you can't pour from an empty vessel. So self care becomes really vital. And, and the vitality and the, and the wellness and the, um, thriving. That's the thing that allows us to connect in healthy ways. And that's the thing that allows us to contribute in healthy ways, but it kinda begins within. Yeah, yeah, Jay: absolutely. I believe that absolutely. That you cannot give what you don't have. You can't pour from an empty cup and, but every time you refill that cup, it actually grows. So you have mornings give, which is, which is the miracle of what all this is talking about. So very good. Well, let's, let's take a quick break here and uh, have some messages and then we'll be right back. Let's talk about your, your book from there. Speaker 4:   Jay: Welcome back to rebuilding. We've had a wonderful discussion so far, so far with Tony Lloyd and, and now I'd like to continue Tony with a little more information or a little what? Tell us about your book, the, uh, um, crazy, good advice. I always love crazy good advice. So, Tony: right, right. Well, uh, there's not a lot of crazy good advice in the book, but, uh, but here's, here's kind of where it started. I, um, you know, I mentioned I have a podcast and the podcast is called social entrepreneur. And I had been interviewing people and at the end of each interview I said, you know, um, w what's one key piece of advice, something that you've learned on your journey that you would pass along to others? Right. And I, um, I, I began to notice that there was a pattern. It's like I kept hearing some of the same pieces of advice again and again, I began to stitch them together mind a little bit. So I took my, um, I'm kind of a spreadsheet kind of guy. So I took my a Google spreadsheet. They had all my guests listed on it and I wrote out the advice in one column beside their name. Tony: And so I went through and I wrote it all out. And then I began, I went back and I started categorizing them and then I sorted the spreadsheet and it turned out that there were like 10 things that kept being repeated again and again. So I thought, Oh, well there's these 10 key pieces of advice that, you know, the first 150 guests that I'd had on my show had given. And so isn't that interesting? So I started trying to write a blog post and this thing was just getting out of hand. Um, and then my wife and I were at an event and I'll try to fast forward through this pretty quickly, but my wife were, uh, and I were at an event and, um, it was a play. And the two ladies sitting behind us were having a conversation. My wife is a very friendly, so she turned around the interview, deuced herself to them. Tony: And at the end of the day, um, you know, we were just sort of chit chatting and they said, one of the ladies said, Oh, I, um, you know, work at a radio station. I said, well, I have a podcast. Isn't that interesting? Maybe we should have coffee sometime. So we exchange business cards. I didn't think anymore about it. Well she took the, the business card and she listened to my podcast and then she went to the president of the radio station and she said, Hey, you should listen to this. So the guy called me up and he said, look, we've got a drive time slot coming open 10 or I'm a seven to 8:00 AM in the morning. And he said, I would love to put you in that slot. Um, could you do that? And I thought, well, okay, I'm going to need a little help if I'm going to do that. Tony: Uh, because uh, you know, the thing about radio, and you probably know this better than I do to think about, you know, broadcast radio is you have to hit your Mark, right? You know, you have to, you have to come in just at the right time and you have to take that commercial break at exactly the right time. And you have to, you know, and mine was an hour long show, so there were two segments. So it was a first hour with a break and there was a second hour of the break. And so it was kind of complicated and I was trying to schedule all these guests and everything. So what I did was I decided to do a crowdfunding campaign and um, and a friend of mine named Tom who, uh, is Australia, he has a crowd funding, you know, like Kickstarter's a crowd funding platform. Tony: Well he has one called start some good and it's really specifically made for people who had social good businesses. And so I thought, well I'll, I'll reach out to Tom and you know, see what he thinks about this. And so Tom told me, he goes, look, your, your friends and family are going to contribute. Just get over it. They're going to contribute, but it's their friends and family that you want to bring in. And the thing they'll come in for is some kind of spiff and that spiff should be something that only you can provide. And I was like, man, what would that be? And I go, well, you know, I've got this blog post that is just like, it's really out of hand. And I was thinking, wouldn't that be an interesting book? And here's what it's about. And Tom, his name's Tom Dawkins, he's from Australia. Tony: He's like, yes, yes, I would buy that book right now. And he was like practically jumped through the phone at me. And so I was like, okay, well I guess we're going to do that. So it, so in order to put on our radio program, which I had never done, I needed to do a crowdfunding program, which I had never done. And in order to do that I needed to, you know, write a book is, so that's what we did. We, uh, my wife illustrated the book. It's really a cool book. It's got all these great illustrations in it and um, and it's really these 10 pieces of advice that we put together from all these guests. But the, but the title, crazy good advice. It comes from this one guy and his name is Looney liberos. So if you're going to get some advice from somebody, you're going to get advice from somebody may loony, right? Tony: Absolutely. So, uh, Looney said is his one key piece of advice was this, and it was a little different than everybody else's. He said, look, when you're going to start something big like a business, he said, your friends and your family and your mom and extended relatives are all going to tell you that you are crazy. And he said, and I'm here to tell you they are right, that if you're going to do something world changing, you have to be a little bit crazy to do this thing. And it is going to be, it is going to be a journey of perils, right? It's going to be the hardest thing you have ever done in your entire life. And so if you're going to be crazy enough to do something like that, you might as well make the biggest impact you can possibly make. And so that's where the title of a book, it's this crazy good advice. You know, like you'd have to be crazy to do this stuff. So we've got these 10 different pieces of advice and we've got stories and it's illustrated. My wife did the illustrations and it is just, you know, it's really funny because when people read the book, I go, what did you think of the book? They go, those illustrations were amazing. Like, did you see any words in the book? Did you happen to notice that? So Jay: it, any of that make any difference to the word thing? Tony: Uh, so the, so the beauty of, uh, of that is, um, you know, the illustrations, the way the book is laid out, and it is the thing that makes the book remark a bowl, right? So it's the thing that people remark on. And, and so that's a, you know, that, that's kind of the story of the book. Oh, and one last thing, we gave the book away for free as a spiff for the crowdfunding. And when the crowdfunding was over, we go, well, we've got a book. What are we going to do with it? Well, I tell you what, let's just put it on Amazon and we put it on Amazon and it turned into a bestseller. It's like, Oh darn, this is crazy. It's like, you know, I'm doing the little, like the little emoji with the exploding brain here. I'm just, yeah, it is. It is just the craziest thing. And so we, you know, we did the crowdfunding, we sold the book and um, and here we are today. So that's kind of the story of the book. Jay: No, that's, that sounds fantastic. That I can imagine people, uh, being drawn to that just for, you know, we're all looking for that advice of, of how to do the things we want to do and if we find some kernel somewhere, um, it's worth the, the effort to find that kernel. So. Absolutely. Um, so your podcast, social entrepreneurs, how, what kind of things do you talk about there? What, what's your, it's a good [inaudible] Tony: it's a good question. You know, you were, uh, you were, uh, in the, uh, intro here, you, you mentioned this, that we, we tell positive stories from underrepresented voices focused on solutions. And so when, one thing we try to do is you could find negative stories almost anywhere. You know, I almost, I cannot turn on the news on my radio in my car anymore. I just can't do it. Yeah. Yeah. I cannot drive and pound on the steering wheel at the same time, you know, so, so we're, we're really trying to find stories of, uh, where something positive happened at. But, you know, when I say positive stories, I don't mean, um, you know, this lady makes a pajamas for goats. And isn't that cute? Right? I, I'm talking about people who really make an impact. And so, uh, from underrepresented voices, we're really trying to find those voices that you aren't hearing everywhere else in the world. Tony: So I have interviewed people that are well known. You know, there's bill Drayton, the head of the Shoko, or, uh, Cheryl Dorsey, who's the head of echoing green. And so these are organizations that are big and global. And you know, lots of people within my circle of influence. Lots of people have heard of them, but I also interview people who, um, you know, the, uh, uh, uh, Maria Costa Cheka, she's, um, she, uh, has a, an organization called, uh, uh, Laboratoria and it's in Peru. And what they do is they train poor women to code so that they can become employed and, you know, have a skillset that will raise them and their family out of poverty. And so that's a, you know, a good example of that. Uh, and so, um, we tell positive stories from underrepresented voices. So often women entrepreneurs, often people of color, often, you know, just other people that you may not just run into every day at the mall. Tony: Right. And, and so, um, and who, um, focused on solutions. So we, we, um, we focus on a thing called solutions journalism and solutions. Journalism is this, it's tell the whole story, right? So solutions journalism is, you start with, um, you know, the story of here's the problem. So let's take, you know, climate change, or let's take, uh, you know, uh, extreme poverty or hunger or, you know, lack of access to clean water or any of these things, right? You start with that problem, but then you present and here's somebody who's working on that and they're making a dent in the universe. So the problem with most of the stories, like, let's take global warming, for example. You know, if you're driving down the road and you listen to a story and somebody is talking about climate change, they're going to talk about rising sea levels and they're going to talk about, you know, um, the coral reef is dying in a good talk about, you know, um, all kinds of crazy things, right? Tony: And, and that's all you're going to hear. You're going to say the world is, any of the world is ending, but what we want to say is, yes. You know, the climate is obviously changing the, you know, we can't deny that, but here are some people who are doing some things that are solutions, you know, um, uh, there's a guy who, uh, who has, uh, uh, a, um, solar panel project on the local, uh, reservation up here and they call it solar bear. And he is employing, um, you know, indigenous people, native Americans to build solar panels. And, you know, not only is he providing employment, but he is providing electricity and, you know, clean energy and all these things, you know, and, and what's interesting to me is I have been, um, speaking about, uh, climate change and about clean energy and these things. And the places I'm getting invited to are, um, and I don't mean for this to be a political statement, but they are surprisingly politically conservative. Tony: Um, that, that I thought that these would be people who would not want to have this conversation, but these are people who want to have a conversation because they know that there are solutions at hand. And, and so, um, you know, I was just in a Chicago County, um, uh, Wisconsin. Uh, they, they, uh, or Chisago County, Minnesota, right on the, uh, uh, Wisconsin border. Uh, they, um, they voted, uh, 65% of them voted for Donald Trump in the last election. Uh, and they were all ears and sitting at the edge of their seat to talk about clean energy solutions and how they could participate in them. And so, you know, it, it's something that goes across political divides. It goes across all these things. So it's really about focusing on solutions. It's not talking about, you know, what are our political arguments? Or how are we going to disagree? You know, that's really the thing that we're trying to do with this social entrepreneur podcast is to, uh, is to bring forth, uh, people with real solutions to real world problems who are really making them Jay: well, that's being an engineer by training. Um, that's this, the fearmongering is what I call it. Every, the world's going to end. Yeah. That doesn't right. Affect me. That it's like, well, yeah, I've, I heard in the 70s we're going to have another ice age. And, and it's like, give me solutions. If you, if you say this is happening, what solution do you want me to work on? I'm an engineer. I can fix things if you tell me what to do or tell me what you would like to see. Yeah. Um, so yeah, that, that's much more effective to me and I am of more of the conservative end of the spectrum and, you know, doesn't matter here, but, but yeah, give me a solution that you want me to or, or if I have a solution, listen to the solution, not just say, well, I don't care what your solution is. I, the world's going Tony: to end. Right. But yeah, I like that. You know, it's been, it's been interesting because people have been coming up with solutions about, um, uh, reducing energy cost in buildings, right? So it's not just about clean energy. Only only 25% of the CO2 that we're producing is produced through energy production. But if you think about, uh, other things, so, uh, you know, buildings is a big, uh, user of energy. And so if you can find ways to be more efficient, and here's what I really like about all that, and we're, you know, we've kinda gone down the climate change, so we might want to climb back out. But, um, one thing I like about it is a lot of, um, energy solutions are also the frugal solutions. And so my wife, we love to save money, right? So, you know, you tell me I can, uh, save money with some led light. I'm gonna listen to you because it doesn't matter what my political affiliation is. I want to know what solutions are good. It doesn't come out of my pocket. So much so. Okay. So, exactly. In your, um, in your greatest year, last year, what were some of the strengths that you discovered in yourself that you maybe didn't know about before? Tony: Wow, that is such a good question. Um, you know, part, part of what I think is I had an opportunity to apply the strengths that I had. Right. You know, it's, I, I have, um, because I was in this sort of, um, talent management, talent development. I had a ton of these sort of self-assessments, you know, disc surveys or, uh, you know, all these strengths finders, all these things. So I think I was, you know, somewhat aware of my strengths. Um, but I, I think I, it gave me an opportunity to apply some of those strengths. Um, but let me, let me think for a second about your question. You know, I, I think really, um, understanding that thing we talked about while ago about how our thoughts lead to our choices lead to our behaviors that create feelings that reinforce thoughts, choices, and behaviors. I think it's kind of like it was there, but I didn't see it, you know, like that thing existed, but I wasn't aware. Tony: It's, it's okay. I'm going to tell you really, I'm gonna tell you two really quick stories. Okay. So, um, a story number one, I, it's, uh, like July or August of 1991. And I am in Maine and I am, uh, driving on a little country road in Washington County, Maine. And so, you know, if you, Washington County is kinda in that South Eastern corner of Maine. And so, you know, you're near new Brunswick, you're near Nova Scotia. And so, you know, you're, you're way up there in the Northeast corner. And, um, and so I'm driving, uh, in this area and I've, you know, I'm scouting out this place. I wanted to go hiking on this trail and it was a trail had around there somewhere, but this, I ended up in this place and they call it the Berets in Maine. And the reason they call it the Barron's is it's kind of the place where the glaciers sort of skidded off the edge of the continental shelf there and went out into the ocean and it left behind sort of this scraped off rubble. Tony: You know, like right now there's snow on the ground up here in the Northern hemisphere and it's going to start melting off. And when it does, it's going to be like this gritty, ugly black who left behind. Right? Well, that's kind of what the ground was like around this area called the barons. And, um, and so nothing really was growing in that area. I mean there was some stands of trees around, but there were a lot of big patches with nothing higher than, let's call it 18 to 24 inches is just these little plants. Right? And so I'm, I'm driving. And what caught my attention while I was driving was I saw this flock of turkeys and they were over here in these little shrubs and these little 18 inch shrubs and they were pecking at them and they look like little Jack hammers over there. Tony: They're just bam, bam. I'm like, what are they pecking at? What is that? And it's a weekend. I don't have anything else to do. So I just stopped my car and I get out, you know, the turkeys go running off and I walk around and I get out there and I'm looking at these little plants and what I didn't know at the time, and I do know now is those are wild blueberry Plains. And so I was standing there and it's like a perfect, almost cold, almost warm day. Like the air is cool, but the sun is warm and I'm standing there and I'm looking at these little plants and I reached down and I pluck this one little wild blueberry off of 'em, you know the branch and I pop into my mouth and it is just like, you know, like sometimes you forget what things are supposed to taste like. Tony: Like you get one of those tomatoes from the grocery store and it's not really a tomato is like, you know, I don't know what those things are, but then you really get a tomato out of your garden. You go, yeah, that's right. Tomatoes, you know? So that's what it was like. It was like that, you know, the sort of sense of wellbeing and nutrition and deliciousness and all that. And so, you know, I, I really, I loved that moment. It was a cool moment. It sort of stuck in my head. This, this stopping the car in the cool air, warm sunshine, eating this wild blueberry. So a few weeks ago I was at an I hop now, I don't often go to IHOPs, but somebody had asked me to meet them there and so I met them there and so I said I owed her some pancakes. And I said, Oh, do you have blueberries? Tony: And the woman said, Oh yes we do. I said, well that's fantastic. I would love to have blueberries in my banking. So you know, she goes back and then you know, we're sitting here talking and pretty soon she brings the order out and here's a stack of pancakes. And on top of it is this purple gelatinous goo of stuffs. We're running down the side of it and there's this sort of like fake whipped cream sort of floating on top of head and it's just sort of dripping off the side. It is the nastiest thing I have ever seen in my life. And it is just, yeah, just yuck. And it really, like I had this picture in my head about blueberry, but this compote stuff that they brought out here, it really wasn't what I was thinking of when I thought blueberry. And I think sometimes it's kind of like that we go through life and we're served a lot of blueberry compote and we think that's what blueberries are until we really, really, really have a blueberry. Tony: Right. And so for me that's the, it was like this invisible thing that, that people all day every day going to IOP and they order pancakes and they asked for blueberries and they get this purple Google thing is on top of their pancakes and they think that's bluegrass. But that's not really blueberries. And so I think there is so much that is like, it's not what we think it is. There's so much unreal that we think is real out in the world. And that's the thing. It was, you know, with this sort of thoughts leading to choices to behaviors that produce feelings that reinforce thoughts, choices, and behaviors. For me it was like I saw the blue bottle, you know? Yeah. That's what it was like for me. That was my lesson learned. It was like, you know, all of a sudden I could see a thing that I hadn't seen before that was there all the time. I just didn't know. Jay: And you knew what it was supposed to taste like. You knew what it was like to what's supposed to be turning that, that knowledge that that's in there into intention, into action, into the feelings, into, into the result that again. Yeah. Wow. Um, yes. Well that was a long story. Just say that's what it was. It was good though. Yeah. So someone came to you and wanted to have the best year of their life, what, what advice would you give them? Yeah. Tony: Well first of all, know what that looks like. Doing the measurement before and the measurement after. Yeah. Yeah. So, so it's really, you know, um, the best year is really are you connecting, are you contributing and are you self care? Are you, uh, participating in self care that, um, and, and so, you know, then how would you measure how am I connecting? How am I contributing and how is my self care? And then, and then make a plan, right? So make a plan for, you know, here, here's on a scale of one to 10, here's how I think I'm doing on self care. In different areas on connecting, on contributing, or if you wanted to go take Michael Hyatts, um, you know, life score or whatever instrument you might use to say, here's where I am right now and then here's why I want to be, and then what steps do I need to take in order to get there? And by the way, in order to take those steps, you may have to think different thoughts in order to make different choices in order to have new behaviors. Right? So, so what do I, what do I have to think differently than I'm thinking right now? Okay. And then how to, so, Jay: well, we're kind of coming up on the end of our time. So, um, first and how do we connect with, how do my listeners connect with you? Um, we talked about a maybe a special offer you might have. Um, yeah, Tony: yeah, yeah, absolutely. So the first thing to know is, my name is Tony Loyd, but my last name is noticed that with one L. O. Y. D. yeah. And so, um, you know, people can find Uh, if they want to email me, they can email, again, spelled with one L. um, and, and one of the things I want to do to today, Jay, is, and I've never done this before, is I have this book, crazy good advice. Excuse me. And it's a really cool book. Now you can go to Amazon right now and you can buy it for like $14.95, uh, or you can get the Kindle version for nine $9.50. Um, or something like that. I don't know, they'd have to check the price on the website to know exactly what it is. Uh, but if somebody will send me an email and say, I'd like to get a copy of crazy good advice, um, I will for whatever it cost me to ship and handle it. Right. Uh, I will send it to them and um, and just send me an email, we'll work out the details and I'll send you a book as long as you've covered the shipping. Jay: That's a fantastic deal. That's $15 that you're saving right there just, just for the book. So, um, that's, that's a pretty good deal. Again, that my frugal wallets is, that's, that's not a bad thing. Oh, yeah. All right. Well, yeah, make sure you give Tony an email and a workout how you would like to get your, your free book. So, um, any parting thoughts? Anything you'd like to just kinda say in closing? Tony: You know, uh, Jay I, I just wanted to, um, part with this. I mean, it's really about rebuilding, right? So your, your whole mission here is to rebuild and, um, and I think it's something we have to do every day, right? We have to, we have to, it's like bread. It's never quite done. You can't make it and just leave it there and go, there it is. We're done. Right. We have to make it new every day. And so, um, you know, one of the things, and I'll, and I'll kind of close with this as my parting thought. Um, one of the things in, uh, like the 10th chapter of the book, uh, of the crazy good advice book, uh, I talk about that story about how we ended up with, uh, you know, somebody approached me and they liked me and they offered me a radio program and, you know, and, and et cetera, et cetera. Tony: And, and I am like, I'm kinda like Forrest Gump of business, right? Like, you know, I just sort of wander into these really fun things that happen, you know, so I've been very lucky. I'm really blessed to have all these things that have happened in my life. Um, but one of the things that I think from all the advice I have, these 10 different pieces of advice that different people are giving me, if I took it all on, I boil it down to one thing. I would, I would say this, that miracles find you while you're in motion, that it's, it's kind of like we are surrounded by this cloud of miracles, like all these cool little things that are going to happen out there. But if you're sitting on the sofa and you're sitting on your hands and you're sitting still, they can't find you. Tony: And so when you stand up and you get into motion, that's when the miracles occur. That's when the really cool, juicy moments of serendipity, you know, moments of synchronicity, whatever you want to call it, you know, the Wu juice, that's where it really starts happening out there. And, um, and so whatever it is that you've been thinking about, you know, that, that, you know, starting a business or starting a podcast or you know, becoming a speaker or writing a book or, you know, uh, becoming a teacher or becoming a nurse or whatever that thing is, um, you know, start, just start and everything else. Jay: Yeah. That's fantastic I, I had never thought about it that way, but that is absolutely true. Absolutely true. Well, thank you Tony so much for being with me today and, uh, I really appreciate your, your knowledge, your thoughts, your stories. That was, it was a fun time for, uh, for, uh, this hour for rebuilding, so appreciate you being here. Jay: as always. Thank you for listening to rebuilding a hope that you have heard something today that will help you on your path to rebuilding your life. Something resonated. If you felt a call to action, please take that action and rebuild. Let me know what you think of today's show or any of my shows. You can leave or I would love to hear from you. Comments, suggestions, and topics that you would like me to cover are always welcome. Remember, a dream written down with a deadline is a goal and a goal achieved. Is a dream come true? Until next time, I am Jay Walter and I am always rebuilding.  
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St Paul, MN, USA
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4 days, 17 hours