Building the Pillars of an Intentional Life – Eric Freedom

Leave a review to help other dads find the show and become better men and fathers: Leave Review

Today’s guest is Eric Freedom.

We go deep today talking about:

  • The importance of identifying as a builder
  • The 5 pillars Eric uses to build a well-rounded life
  • What a good dad teaches his kids about emotion
  • Why focusing on fitness first actually helps you build the other pillars
  • The importance of knowing what layer of accountability you need in your life

Eric is a husband, father, founder of Reason Fitness, kingdom builder, and a student of life.

He is a coach and believes that everyone should have someone in their corner helping them chase their goals and realize their capabilities.

He has been a Fitness & Wellness coach for 15 years and helps people become the best versions of themselves. His advocacy is to optimize their fitness, mindset & nutrition in a way that is attainable and sustainable for real life.

Find Eric online at:
Instagram: @coachericfreedom

Twitter: @theericfreedom

Resources mentioned:
Book: Don’t Run From the Fight

Speaker 1 0:00

You are the foundation of your family, you are the firm footing. They build their lives on. You carry a glorious burden and you never dream of laying it down. You carry it with joy and gratitude. You show up, even when you don't feel like it. You lead, serve, love and protect. You are a father. This is the Dad.Work podcast where men are forged into elite husbands and fathers by learning what it takes to become harder to kill, easier to love and equipped to lead. Get ready to start building the only legacy that truly matters. Your family

Curt Storring 0:59

welcome to the dad work podcast. This is Curt Storring, your host and the founder of Dad.Work and today I am joined by Eric Freedom. Eric is a husband father, founder of reason fitness, Kingdom Builder and a student of life. He's a coach and he believes everyone should have someone in their corner helping them chase their goals and realize their capabilities. He's been a fitness and wellness coach for 15 years and he helps people become the best version of themselves. His advocacy is to optimize their fitness, mindset and nutrition in a way that's attainable and sustainable for real life. He's got a couple of podcasts, we the trust. The other ones called Finding reason he's got a book on Amazon don't run from the fight. And you can find everything else about him at Eric All that will be in the show notes at Dad dot work slash podcast we are going to talk today guys about the importance of identifying as a builder. The five pillars Eric uses to build a well rounded life. What a good dad teaches his kids about emotion. Why focusing on Fitness First actually helps you build the other pillars and the importance of knowing what layer of accountability you need in your life. Hope you guys are crushing it today. If you haven't seen your kids yet because you're at the gym, it's early morning, whatever. Pump yourselves up to go home and absolutely just deliver just show up so undistracted, so present so selflessly serving, that your kids are just blown away. And the same with your wife. Just go and do something wonderful for her only because that's what a good husband does not because you have an expectation of reciprocation, just because you are a good man. And that is what good men do. Do that for your family, when you get home. Or if you're listening to this later on, do it tomorrow. Leave a note do something guys go above and beyond to serve, and be the leaders of your family. That means doing amazing things and getting the most potential out of your wife and kids, and making them feel so safe and secure with you as the head of the family. Now we're gonna get into this podcast, guys, but I have to tell you something I'm offering we are offering a 10 day free elite dad challenge. And if you haven't joined that yet, I gotta ask what are you guys thinking? This is 10 days, a challenge every day, an email every day, that breaks down exactly how to act like and be an elite family leader. That's husband, that's father, that's man to raise great kids, save your marriage in some cases, and just live an exceptional life. I want you to go sign up at Dad.Work slash challenge that's free. It's 10 days right to your inbox. It is insanely powerful. I've got like just incredible feedback from you guys who are on it, saying that within like two days, it's changing lives. And I just am so grateful that it's doing that because this is tried and true, guys, this is everything I did to change my life. It's everything I do today, to be an elite family leader. It's everything I do with the men in our brotherhood elite group coaching program so that they can do the same. And I'm giving away for free. Okay, sign up for that. It's going to be amazing Dad.Work slash challenge. If you want more dad work in your life so that you can show up as an elite family leader now. Why don't we hop into the podcast to date with Eric freedom. We are going to have so many more amazing podcasts coming up in the next few months. I've got tons of interviews scheduled. I've got tons of your questions to answer for the solo episodes coming up guys. Stick around. I hope you love it. So for you to become elite family leaders, for your kids, for your wife for the future to become an elite ancestor. How sick is that a? Anyway, enjoy this conversation. Love you guys. Thanks for being here. Here we go.

All right, gentlemen, we're back for another episode of The dad work podcast with Eric freedom do we did we connect a little while ago and you're like, we're the same person. This is

really excited for this conversation because we're not actually the same person. You're doing a ton of crazy things and Dude, your dad, your husband, your business owner, there's so much going on. And yet like we were just talking about, you're like covering a lot of bases well, so Let me just start out by laying the laying the groundwork here. Tell us just like, you know, two second overview family business so that we can go in everything else. Yeah.

Eric Freedom 5:08

Well, thanks for having me.

I feel honored. I am doing my best to steward to the best of my ability. So I don't know if I'm doing them well, but I am doing my best man. And I think that's the most that we can ask ourselves most. Yeah, man, I'm a father or a husband. First, I tell my kids that that I love their mom most. And I loved her first. And that's why they're here now. So been in marriage for 10 years, decade. This year will be 11 in August, and been with the same person in the same relationship since I was 17 years old. So I've been I've been with the same lady now for 16 years, for 16 years. So half of my life man one more No more than 1618 years. 18 years. So I've been with on my for 18 years. It's pretty crazy. When I think about it. I'm gonna give her a kiss when I walk out on this podcast.

And three kids six, four and one. So we we still have like, how can you consider a one year old? Still a newborn?

Curt Storring 6:17

It's pretty close. Yeah, we get one of the toddlers.

Eric Freedom 6:20

Yeah, we have we have we have a little one. And she doesn't walk yet. She has just started like becoming a monster crawler. Just starting to have some solids. And yeah, man, I've had the privilege of this year will be year 10 of stewarding a business that I started 10 years ago. I am I've been a coach for 16 Little over 16 years, this will be my 17th year starting my 17th year right now been been largely in the fitness fitness industry for the better the former years. And now it's kind of morphed into. I just had a conversation with someone about it yesterday. Like I mean, he asked like he basically was picking my brain, like, How'd you get into life coaching and I was like, Oh, I'm a life coach. Okay, you know, don't like to label but I guess that probably the closest thing to describe what I do. I call it executive coaching. But I have the privilege of coaching a good amount of men and small, very small amount of women. And been doing that for half a decade or so. And this my most recent thing that I've been into lately is love woodworking. And I actually recently published the book that we talked about. And yeah, man, just mid 30s Trying to figure life renaissance man, you know, one season at a time and just trying to enjoy enjoy it while it lasts. I recently read a book called die with zero. Don't have your Have you read that if you read that book, but it's by Bill Perkins. And so this too, went out what is it? April, May, May, it's may already Yeah. And and, you know, we're entering the middle of q2, and I'm about a dozen or so books in. And it's probably the best book I've read to year to date so far. And it's really reframed a lot of how I want to finish my year, and how I want to finish the better half of this decade. And just what I want my 30s to look like as I head into my 40s What does it really mean to be a good steward of my time, money, energy resources, influence relationships, and, and so on. So that's me, man in a nutshell.

Curt Storring 8:34

Renaissance man stuff. There's a lot of things in there. Did you say woodworking by the way? Yeah. You know, so, so cool.

Eric Freedom 8:40

Yeah, that's I have a good friend that's into it. So he helped me I've done two projects. So far, nothing amazing. Like nothing I've done. Edge grain cutting board, made of walnut. I took eight feet of walnut was like 18 inches by eight feet of water turned into a board that's about to two feet by three feet long or so huge can work on my steaks on there. And then also made a mantel for my wife for a fireplace this Christmas. That was that was out of maple. And I was really fun. So

Curt Storring 9:13

yeah, that's awesome. I've actually just started doing stuff like that with my kids. Like we just finished building a little workbench in the garage, so that they can start doing this stuff too. And it's like, I don't know anything about that. I actually like Yeah, dude, I made like three or four years ago, I made us a like a farmhouse table and bench never made anything else before. And I just figured it out. And it was awesome. But now, it's like a thing that I can do with the kids. And I don't know if they're gonna like it, but I'm going to give them the opportunity. And that's one of the things that I love to do is just like, do more and do interesting things so that you can then maybe spread that to them because they might pick up on it, man. Like one kid loves Lego, so maybe he's gonna love building real things. Yeah, and I think

Eric Freedom 9:51

I think ultimately, I think something I want to teach my kids is that we're all builders and regardless of what you're building, know that you You were created, you were built, and you are meant to be a builder. And what that means is like, it doesn't mean that you need to, like do woodwork like I, I have no business turning this into a business like I have no, I have no business monetizing woodworking at all. Like, am I proud of my pieces? Yes, they're very good. In fact, they are world class to me. Like my cutting board, like if you offered me like an edge wooden cutting board about that size probably goes for 600 to $800 cost me about 150 to 200 bucks in materials, I would not sell it for $5,000. Like you cannot have it my mantel when I do move even those mounted into my fireplace, I'm going to take it off and take it with me, even if it doesn't fit. Even if I have no fireplace in my new house, I'm going to tell you with me because I made it. Unless like the sellers or like, the buyers of my house, have some type of sense of it. And like I want to bless them with it. And they need to, like verbally promised me that they're going to keep it and right. You know, like not remove it, you know otherwise or like, if you do decide to remodel like let me know, and I'll come take it off your hands, you know, so like, it's that sentimental thing because it's not about what it's worth, like the price of it. It's about what I built and the hours like the ridiculous amount of hours that it took 30 hours for me to build it. I don't like how long it took you make that table?

Curt Storring 11:20

Oh, dude, it is? I don't I'm not even gonna tell you. Right? Yeah, it's

Eric Freedom 11:23

embarrassing. Yeah, right. Yeah, just standing like

Curt Storring 11:28

everything, everything, every step along the way. I've taken pictures of it. I was like, Dude, I love having people over. Because it's like, it's not a perfect table. There are mistakes in it. And yeah, dude, I built that. And it was from nothing. And that's more about that, though, do because this is a huge conversation that I don't think a lot of people really get because we're all consumers today. There's not many creators, and I've always felt as well, like a builder, like a creator. And everyone it is like just consuming, consuming, consuming. But what is it about? Like, the feeling of guys don't get this, there is something about creating the different.

Eric Freedom 12:04

Yeah, so So going back to my original like illustration, like, again, it took 30 hours, it changed. It was a, it was a process of becoming for me. So the first project took me like 15 to 20 for the for the for the cutting board. And then I think that if the mountain Demento was my first project. So what I did was we did, I already forgot what it's called, we did it where it's like it locks into each other, and how to hammer it. And so, so we did that. And then I had like little like little modules that's like I put in like, I put in like five pegs, because there's five kids, five of us in my family, you know, stuff like that little little small details, others 10 pegs on each side on the edges, because my wife and I've been together for 10 years, and I gave it to her on our 10th year of marriage. You know, so like little things that only I'm going to know that are really special to us. You know, I think the thing about building is that you learn that it's not perfect along the way, and it won't be and and that's okay. But what we are building is important. And what you're building right now may not be what you're going to be building forever. It's temporary as well, the seasons, two things that we're building in life. And that's what I love about building is that we are all builders, whether whether we are in construction, one of my one of my good buddies, is a he he started a company called Cornerstone Cornerstone building development, right? Like he, he loves being a builder, not just but he's also a great builder of people. And he's just beginning to see that side of himself. Right? So we build things, ideas, and ultimately, we were all meant to build something or build something to become better, right. So you either are the originator of the of building something new, a new concept idea or a thing, or you take something and you build it and you make it better. Right. And I think there's so many avenues that us as men as dads, we can go down. But I think when we lose sight of that, that that's who we are. I did not see us going down this route, by the way. But I think when we lose sight of that is when we lose sight of who we are. Because we were like so one thing I give an example is I'm a I'm a big time person. So for example, I like to let people builders build what they build best, and I stay in my lane. So you're not going to catch me like doing a plumbing work like plumbing work under my house. And And guess what? It saved me $9,000 $10,000 To replumb my house? Yes, it would. And that's an insane amount amount of money for a lot of people, right? It's a ton of money. But for me is that best time spent? No, I'd rather get someone that is that is a pro that he was meant to do this work to do this work and get paid and rewarded handsomely for the work that he's doing for doing a good job than me trying to do it halfway. Right. But there have been times where I think for the exercise for the sake of building or the experience of when it'll teach you it's good for you. So for example, my kids have what do you call it when you have like two sinks in And in one vanity, a double vanity, a double A double oh my gosh, that's, that's important. It's a double vanity, right? So they have a double vanity in there in the restroom that they that they share. And so they each have their own sink. And, you know, the one of the things I tried to teach them was like, hey, like, this is your side, this is your side, keep a toothbrush year, you know, keep stuff lined up, hey, every time you finished using the sink, you want to wipe it stuff like that. And both of their sea sinks coincidentally are clogged. I'm like, What do you guys send down there? That it's clogged. And I had just learned how to dissect a sink because so I was gonna call plumber, fix it. And then my buddy who's like, pretty handy was like, Hey, let me send you this YouTube video. Like, if you have this kind of sink, it's actually quite easy. I looked, I watched the video I was like, it is pretty easy, but I gotta My hands are gonna get dirty. It's probably gonna take me and I was like, I think if this could take me one hour, it's worth the lesson. And I will do it the first time to decide if it's worth my time going forward. Right? So I did it, I took it up. It's I have this thing where like, you have to get under the seat and unscrew the thing that goes up and down your tongue. Okay, so so so I took it apart. I like got an old toothbrush. I like pulled out the stopper, but I like gag. And like trying to scrub it down. It's not like black mold or whatever, the black gunk in there and ton of hair. Right and, and I was like, wow, that was it. Because as I cleaned out the inside of the of the sink going down into the pipes. I was like, wow, it was it was all stuck there. And for me, I was like, You know what? Next up, I will handle going forward. Neck below. That's not me. Right? I'll let the plumber deal with the real plumbing the Oregon I'll deal neck, neck and above. And I think the lesson for me in that example is like is is yeah, like, like that's, that's a form of building or learning how to like do something, and I'm okay with it in that in that. But there are times where I'm not, you know,

Curt Storring 16:50

so. And the thing is like with I was thinking about your book, as you're talking about this, and you're sort of your your five, sort of fundamental components of life. And like we're building something in our day to day life, and especially as fathers, we're building family. But in that family structure, the way that I say it is, we are the foundation of our family. And we've got to be that solid, or concrete, whatever they make foundation out of in order for our kids and wife to build a wonderful life on top of us. And so there is building of the man who will be the father and the husband. And I wonder if you want to like talk a little bit about that how you've seen this come? Because I think I mean, your book is called don't run from the fight. Is that correct? It talks about your opponent being you. And it's like, that's exactly it. We're fighting against ourselves to build what we need out of our life. So have you like have you seen this sort of analogy play out in your life? And how are you building maybe this goes right into the the mind body spirit, emotion wallet, maybe not. But I just want to sort of riff on that and like building the man how we're doing that. Yeah, together as a father.

Eric Freedom 17:57

Oh, that is? That's big dude. But you can take it. Yeah, that's a that's a lot to unpack. Man. So, you know, as a father, I think this is just like a blanket statement. I think becoming a father was one of the greatest points where in life like you come into contention, right? I think it's one of the greatest fights of my life. When I look at if I look at myself as a boxer, a fighter, right, we have different matches, right? I think there are two things that that like the two the two biggest fights that I've had, you know, in the ring, my record, whatever my boxing record, right, or my fighting record, or my MMA record, in the last decade is number one started my own business. That's why when the biggest fights in my life, but it wasn't really about starting the business was a answer to me answering the call to my bigger picture purpose of who I am and what I wanted to do with my time who what was my being and, and what I did was an expression of my being by my actions and, and the things that I built, man, this thing has really become a builder thing. But like the things that thing that I built, and became the things that I started to do every day, start to find my being. So that was that was me like, I've always been a coach for many years. And I had this itch to coach at a deeper level. And I think the first expression that was burning a gym out of my mom's garage when I first moved back from college and and then getting into my first brick and mortar was like the real It's like It's like someone gave a 25 year old kid Elise like me think about it was a crazy thing to do. And the second thing was was not I would actually go back and say I'm actually not getting married. And I think not because there wasn't importance of being but I think I was actually very immature. When I got married I wanted to do right by my wife. My intentions were good, but I was not ready to to honestly even like man up and be a man. And it wasn't until I became a father. They understood two things. Number one generational like it intergenerational brokenness that I was I was passed on from my parents to me of like, wow, I'm not healthy in these ways because my parents didn't experience a healthy upbringing, or they're like, they've only given me the best of what they have. So if that's what I have, what am I going to give to my kids? So there's two things that I did right away. Number one, like it woke me up to this reality of like, Dude, I gotta wake up, and I gotta, I gotta grow up real quick. Number one, I gotta leave. So so like, I could break it down into like, five pillars, like, literally, like, I didn't realize back then. But these five pillars are being formed in me. The first thing was while like, my emotional health is messed up, holy crap. I am so quick to get it. And I write about this. And but I am so quick to get angry. Like, in my 20s, I was like, my wife always says I was literally like a monster human being like, I can't believe she was attracted to me because, like, I could be the most nicest, charming person as he says. But when I get mad, to the point of like, no return, I am a monster, like, I will, I will destroy things, right? I will punch steering wheels, I will go crazy over things. When I'm that bad. I haven't accessed that level of anger. And along, I felt that love anger. But I've now today I funneled it into, like, if it's injustice, that I feel good, well, how do I how do I create peace? How do I bring justice to the to the injustice, right? Injustice, so So really getting a hold of my emotional health. And back then, like, over over a decade, over a decade and a half ago, my wife had asked me to do therapy, and I wasn't very open to it. Number one, because of the cost. And number two, because I'm like, Dude, that's weird. I'm gonna sit and talk someone like, that's weird. Right? But but you know, so. So getting a hold of my emotional that was that was the first step I think. And then as that, as I grew in that I started to challenge a lot of my meant the things that I that were going in my head, the stories that I told myself, I started begin to challenge those stories. So I started believing challenge the things that I believed, were those actually real experiences, and they were, but were the takeaways. Like you like to people can look at the same situation and take away two different things. Right? So what are these things that I believe on my father, who I've been angry with for over decades, are these things true? Or have I chosen them be true? And it was probably somewhere in the middle? You know, like, my dad is by no, no means perfect. And I think just by me saying that out loud. And really, really accepting that helped me fully understand what grace really was for the first time, you know, and I took a step back and I said, Hey, man, like, dude, if my my dad is just human, am I treating him like he is just human? Or Did I did I put them on a pedestal because of what I think father should be? Right? So Undo to hit unfair and unfairly to him. So that began a process of healing meant like mental and emotional health, and relational health. Right? And then then, then then the first thing I felt was, you know, my wife and I've been at this church for like me, I didn't grow up in the church, but my wife did. She's like, she literally taught. It's called Sunday School, which is like, you basically it's like catechism classes, basically, right. But she, she grew up in that church, like starting from middle school, and starting high school, until we were 20, in our mid 20s, for for 12 years, over a decade. She taught nearly every Sunday, and didn't take time off. And I was like, that's not healthy. Like that's like When did when you get when does your soul get fed? When you get to learn and glean wisdom from others, other than sitting in like a main service, right? And I said, You know what, like, I don't I don't think I want my kids when we do have kids to grow up in this. So that was a step that I took for spiritual health, like changing directions pivoting. And, and that was that was hard, right? So it's like, but but that became this whole new adventure that started seven years ago. We're now spiritually I'm in a holy, like, totally different place like the things that I believed, were KPIs. Haiti, you bring KPIs to spiritual health. Say how you bring business in, metrics into into your spiritual health, but like everything has KPIs, everything has metrics, right? And I don't mean to be performative. But even like my spiritual heart, like it used to be like, I used to feel guilty when I didn't go to church on a Sunday. Is that spiritually healthy? I probably say no now, right? But but but two decades go. It was like, Oh, you didn't go to Sunday school, man, you don't have God. You know, it's like, that is like the furthest thing from the truth. And because now I've experienced like that, spiritually grown, where I know that I can spirit I can get healthy spiritually in different ways. Right? There's not just one funnel. So that's growth, right? financially. Oh, what do I begin there? I'm, I'm a newbie. I'm still beginning. I follow Dave Ramsey for years, you know, but it's like it's getting a grip of like, suits, your suits, your spiritual health, your emotional health, your mental health and your financial health right now get into your physical health later, but the financially it's like The first thing that I learned is like, it's my role at least agreed upon between me and my wife. And it's really, really hard today. So like, I hate to put stereotypes and certain narratives onto society, but like, I get it, like, it's very difficult to go single income. Right? And I know like, so whether like, and I don't know, where you fall on, like egalitarianism versus complementarianism, all this stuff and all that stuff. But like, I know, I've certain friends where they're like, No, that's the men. It's the it's the men's job to provide all the incomes, the wife's job to stay at home, and I'm like, Sure, or the other way around, or whatever. But I just know that in today's society, that may not be possible. Right. Like, that's hard. But what I what I do feel called in my marriage is that, and I've always felt that, like, the burning pressure, I felt from the day that I got engaged was I went to crisis mode. And I thought, Man, I'm gonna one of my biggest fears you guys have Applebee's up there in Canada? Dude, I don't know. But I know what it is. Okay, so so like, it's funny, because in college, we just go to happy hour, like, you know, on Friday nights, and I'd always get this like appetizer sampler special. And it was like $9. And it's like, way too much food for $9. Like, you get mozzarella sticks, and kiss Diaz, and like hot wings, and boneless wings. And it's just amazing nachos. It's totally unhealthy. Just junk, right? And in college, like, you can just eat that all day, right? Every Friday, we ate that. And I remember one of my greatest fears, when I got engaged was like, Man, am I gonna be able to take my family to Applebee's and have them not have to order off like the happy hour only menu. He's in college. It's like, it's kind of you do what you can afford, right? And afterwards, you're like, man, what am I going to do? Right? And it was I was like, Can I even afford to have a family can I can even afford to take my wife on good dates, and so on in the fear. And I think before I thought about like, how do I make money? How do I make money? And now where my financially like my, my theology or my, my, my view of stewardship is, Money Follows value. And I just think, how do I create enough value that there actually is value. And I just believe that the money will follow as a man that wants to provide, that's kind of like my framework of how I see your ability to earn, right? Like, and it's crazy, because like, it's just that simple. People pay for things that are valuable, they will not pay for things that are not. And I believe I've, I've been blessed to bring enough value to the world where I've been rewarded and compensated in a way that provides for my family

savings. On top of that, I was a big, big Dave Ramsey guy that served me really well in my 20s. It doesn't really serve me well. Today. I'm in my 30s. Now where I'm a lot more leveraged than I was. I used to think like I wanted to house paid off this and that and that meant financial security. Now, I think no, no, no, like, how are you leveraging OPM other people's money or even the bank's money at a rate that as long as I can get a better return? How do I can leverage that? So that's a whole nother I'm not I'm not here to get financial advice. But for me, personally, I'm learning about that right now getting into my first few syndication deals right now learning about whole life insurance, heck vs. If you know that is higher the cash value insurance. I'm learning how to like that five to nine B's might not be the only way for my kids to save for college, because well, what if they don't go to college. And that's a whole nother conversation by education. And then there's the fifth pillar, which is, in my opinion, the industry that I'm in the most, one of the most important pillars, not that neither one is more important than the other. But what I love about stewarding your physical body in a good way, in a healthy way, is that, you know, I shared this another podcast earlier this morning is that taking care of your health and your fitness, as one of my mentors, Eric likes to say, is the force multiplier in your life. When you take it, here's the reason why anybody can feel it right away. Finance, it's hard to feel like you're, you're you're kind of snowballing, like in a good direction, right? It's like it takes a while to feel the momentum and the work that you're putting in, right emotional health, you can use, that's one of those things where you're like, you go to therapy, you might feel better, but you don't feel the rolling effect of it until a year later, five years away, like holy crap, as a great relationship with my wife now, but it's because you've been Yeah, because you've been investing in it. And it didn't feel that way for one year for two years. And suddenly you feel you realize, Wow, I have a great like, I realized that I have an amazing marriage. My wife and I are like, we're not perfect by any means. We are you way more than we should. But we but the way that we're able to communicate and love each other now, do take me back 10 years ago, the first three years of my marriage, I could not envision this. Right? And that just takes time. Whereas like your physical fitness, literally. Do you want to feel better? Go do 100 Push ups or no? Oh, you don't feel that? Great. We'll do it. To push up to 100 squats, and then run a mile afterwards, just sit there as you recover, I guarantee you, you're going to feel your dopamine, your endorphins, they're gonna there's gonna be an opiate hit, and you're gonna feel better right away. And when you feel good, that's the force multiplier right there. And that goes, Okay, I feel good. What should I do now? I should I should eat good. I should eat better. Because you know why? I just, I feel so good right now. Why would I want to eat potato chips? After I just went and ran? ran a mile? Did 100 Push Ups? And did 100 squats? Right? Oh, you know what, dude, I feel a little better about money. Now. I'm Emma, I want to save money. I'm tired of wasting. So it's like, it's the first layer of like consciousness for a lot of, especially men. We're such, most of us are such physical beings that like you can feel it right away. And it breeds confidence right away. So I think stewarding your health into the best durability in whatever way you can, is. That's that's the fifth pillar and I do my best to take care of that in different ways in different seasons.

Curt Storring 31:04

So that is so right on the health thing, because it's like, oh, do but the things that matter like spiritual and the connections and it's like, Yes, and I think we get in our own way. We are like the biggest BS errs, we always are distracted. And if you cut all of that crap by just feeling better, like bro, everything falls into place. That's why like the guys that I work with to like, what is the first thing we got to become hard to kill. So you're gonna be doing some sort of exercise, you're gonna be eating reasonably well, like, you've got to do the thing to make your physiological body feel good. And I think so many people are lost today because they simply aren't treating their bodies like they're human. And so well of course, you're gonna feel like crap. Of course, you're gonna be depressed. Of course, you're not gonna have any productivity. Because you're treating yourself like a, like a garbage bin, bro. Of course. And so you're so right, man. Like, that is the way to go. There's so much and what you just said, I'm like taking notes over here. Like you said, like you forgave your father and like you became emotionally aware and like, you didn't yell anymore. Like, dude, same story. But how the flips do that? And it's like, dude, the spiritual stuff. And then like the marriage stuff, and like everything, bro. So maybe we should just like, dive a little deeper because this row to just carry on with this like building analogy. We've just got the plans. Okay, so like, you just saw the plans Eric laid out there. And now it's okay. Well, I don't know how to dig a foundation. It's like, what do we even do there? So I think maybe let's start in reverse order here. Like, dude, you're you've got the gyms, you've done this kind of stuff. Yep. Let's say a guy's like, bro. I just don't even know what to do. What is his first in terms of like, let's get that physical pillar down.

Eric Freedom 32:35

Yeah, that's a good one, man. So the way that I view like changing anything in your life, is there's really three ways to do it. Okay. The first thing is getting awareness and consciousness. So like, let's say that I'm going to assume that you're in a position of, hey, I want to do something about this. I have this problem. Well, here's what you do. There's so many resources out there. I mean, I think if you follow Alex for Mozi, but he talks about he says this one a lot. And my mentor, Chris Cooper says this as well. He says that we have more access to luxuries and tools and resources today, we live better today than the Queen of England did 100 years ago, do you when you think about that? That's mind blowing. Because the Queen of England is like literally rolled. She's like, creme de la creme of like, having access to the best things in the world, right? When you're the queen, you can be like, Hey, I would like this food from this country next week. Let's make that happen. What's up, right? Are you like you literally have that much power? Right? It's like, and it's amazing, because you're literally born into it. Right? And but even what we have today, in terms of basic needs, like we have more access than anybody does to anything, 100 years, or even the queen. So when you think about that, it's really empowering. Like what we have on these devices right here. Like on your phone, you have access to more information, they would like like, like when's the last time you even saw? When's the last time you saw an encyclopedia? Yeah, that's how we used to store information. Right? Do they're like encyclopedias or collectibles. Now, at this point, they're like an homage to history, at this period of time and these years, these, this is the information that we valued, but now information is at our fingertips. So so there's no excuse in terms of like knowledge, knowledge is not an issue. If you're unaware, you're just you're just not educating yourself, right? And generally, to become healthier, we all know, dude, don't eat processed food, eat real foods, don't eat too much of it. Eat e I mean, then you get more complex eat micronutrients macronutrients, right? Where do I start with that? That that gets complicated, but generally speaking, like, you know, when you look at head of broccoli and a steak, and then you look at a pizza, like which one is going to be more nutritionally dense, it's common sense. And you just look at which one are you doing more frequently? Right so I'm just solve the nutrition problem there for you there. But see, that's a that's a that's a DIY issue. then then then it's like, okay, well, then it was done with you. And there's done for you. Right? So I think for for us, it's really looking at what what layer of accountability do we need? What layer of coaching do we need? And I think starting your fitness journey starts with that. It's like, what is going to make me most successful? And then the most point is what I really want? What is the end result? Is it just the feel better? Well, there's not much you need to do to feel better. But there's a lot that you might need to do to have, like real, like measurable, change it like metrics that are like, wow, I am 20% body fat less, that's a huge metric. Well, I want 10% more muscle mass, or I want to never be at risk for high blood pressure, right? These are all metrics where you need a serious game plan to to execute. So for your health and fitness, I would start there. It's like, what layer? What level do you need? But but we all know, like, go for a walk, go for a run, do some push ups do some setups, like those are like, those are very beginning layer conversations of what it means to take care of yourself to a minimum go for a hike, like whatever, like you like we know, we just we make it more complicated than it really is. Right? Which is why which is why gyms exists. Right?

Curt Storring 36:11

Yeah. And dude, it's an implementation issue, not an information issue, right? Like, that's exactly what you're saying. And that's why, like, you got all these guys who notice like, you're right, it's it's basic sense. It's common sense. I love what you said about knowing what layer of accountability you need. Because the same thing, dude, I hear from guys all day in my DMs. They're doing the stuff, I'm giving them all the free resources. Yep. When Well, why aren't you better? It's like, because they need the accountability. And that's not bad. I think that I'm pretty good at doing stuff myself. And as soon as I hire a coach, I'm like, Dude, I was doing nothing. Like I was so lazy. And then a coach pushed me to do even better. And the thing is, as well, don't forget, guys, this isn't just like, well, you know, I want to be a good dad. It doesn't matter if I can like, you know, bench. Couple plates. It's like, well, here's the thing, this is a pillar, like what you're getting at here. And this is like a pillar of your life, you will not show up as an excellent dad and husband, if you are not physically fit for a whole myriad of reasons. So you know, if you're listening to this going, like, well, whatever, I don't need fitness like bro, you do? Get some accountability, hire a trainer for six weeks, just to get something going. And then build that habit and move on from there. Join a gym get like, Dude, there's online coaches these days. It's so easy, but take action. Anyway. Love that as

Eric Freedom 37:19

well. Just Just to add, just to add to that real quick before you move on is I've been a health coach for 16 plus years, I have a coach. So like, even for me myself. Like you might look at me and be like, Why would like? That's weird. Why would you have? Why would you have a coach? If you're a coach? You not know things? Is? It's not a it's not a knowledge issue? No, right? It's like I need guys in my corner. We talked about this in the books you like creating your corner? Where are these guys? I put them in this place to look at my blind spots. And maybe you didn't know you're getting hit from here. And maybe you need to protect yourself here. And maybe you need to strike here. Right? So that's the important thing. So for me, like even as a health coach myself, I have a coach. Yep,

Curt Storring 37:59

same thing. And the thing like I will talk to my guys, and doing like a coaching call with my clients. And then the next day, I will be on a call with my coach. And they'll say something and I'm like, I just told my guys that yesterday, why don't I see it. And it's like, because of the perspective of your life, you are too close to see where you're missing. And the more eyes on you I have found, the better results you're going to get. Because you are your biggest de Esser so it makes so much sense to have a coach no matter who you are highly recommended for everything. Okay, so we've got the body. You've talked, I think he talked a little bit about the sort of the wallet stuff. Dave Ramsey, whatever you guys want to do with that. I don't know if you have anything else on that. But I'm really interested in the other three personally. Are you good if we just sort of like hop over though? Yeah, one for now. Because here's the one that I want to dive into most right now at least is like this emotional piece. Because you have a very similar story to me. Insofar as like you became aware that there was generational I people call it trauma. People call it brokenness, I think you said there's something that our parents passed on from how they were raised all the way back. And it doesn't feel good. There's a missing component. And you and I became aware by God's grace, and then we were able to do something about it. So I've got my own story about screaming and yelling and being a scary sob to my family. But I kinda want to hear yours in terms of like, bro, how did you even start you became aware? Yeah, it's now you got a wife now, but you're still sort of like screaming you're angry? What was your journey? Because dude, if you cannot be an emotional master as a father, you're never going to connect with your kids. So what did that journey look like for you?

Eric Freedom 39:40

Okay, where ever again, like I'm gonna retell you the book right now. No, I'm just kidding. Because like the book really only touches on part of it. Okay, here's what I'm gonna do. I'm gonna attack this from an angle of this is what emotionally father emotionally healthy fathers teach the children of nine or so it's like Play on Rich Dad Poor Dad. Okay like the like Rich Dad's teach their kids to steward wealth in this way like XYZ we all know we, you know if you read Rich Dad, Robert, Robert oh my goodness, I'm Buttrick Izaki There we go, man, you said that really fun when I was about to? I've been learning Spanish and do my tongue has the RS and stuff. It's just the y's, the art everything messes you up so but but the same thing, right? So I've been developing like what I insider info to I've been I've been putting together a new Instagram account slowly. No, I just had the name but I haven't done anything the rich dad journal. And it's like just this idea of like, what a rich like and Rich has a not the definition that you think. Yeah. So it's redefining what it means to be rich. And, and so I've been kind of working through like what it means for rich like rich dads to teach their kids these things, and rich in every aspect. Right. So when it comes to emotional heart, I think there's a few lessons that I feel like rich dads would like if like emotionally Father, if I was emotional father, I would want to be taught this or I want to teach my, my my sons or my daughters this. I think that the first one, the first step is that I had a really hard time with as a very angry, young adolescent boy. And I don't say, teenager or man, because I was a boy. And there are a lot a lot a lot of adult boys out there is learning that there's more than one emotion. That's it. And guess what? It's not being angry. Okay. And it's so funny because like, if someone said this to me, 10 years ago, I'd be like, eat it, bro. But you know, I think for the longest time for me personally, I I didn't understand how to feel anything other than anger. So anger became this driving force actually in anger was like, have you heard in sports? Like play Angry? Oh, are you just not You're not playing mad enough? Go play Angry? Yeah. So I learned to harness anger to become like a superpower. But it's also my biggest kryptonite. So the first thing that I think that I would I would, when it comes to being emotionally healthy, what a rich that would teach their kids is to identify and express your emotions, to be able to understand that it's essential like, for you to be emotionally healthy. You have to be able to recognize to what are you feeling this happy right now? Hey, like, Did you did you think that like, because there's so many times that I was just sad that I would get mad? And it's like, when you zoom out and I look at myself, I'm like to what a sociopath to like, like, you don't even realize you're just sad. But you say no, in anger because of it. Right? And I think so it's express itself. So it's first of all, it's recognizing, and then maybe expressing, expressing and talking about it. Finding someone that you trust, whether it's a therapist, or a trusted friend that has in like, hopefully emotionally healthy, that currently an emotionally healthy space where they can process with you and help you understand what maybe what it is that you're feeling just bounce that back. I think that's the first layer and it's definitely not modeling it, you know. So here's the first thing. The second thing I think would be for for emotional health. I think it's developing a layer of resilience. So understanding that life. And the perfect example of this is, if you've ever worked in sales, this is this is a really good example. You have to be really resilient to be a salesperson, because you have to learn how to take no, you have to learn that right? And some people like Oh, no. And what did they feel right away the thing that we just talked about the ability upset, or they go the maybe the other side of the spectrum, they get really emotionally, they feel really sad. They start to get really down on themselves. And they eventually what's the feeling that comes back after that being really angry again? Right? So I think I would challenge our kids to develop resilience in the face of adversity. Learn that as part of life, just like in sales. It's cyclical, like indifference. I love this clip that just happened where someone was interviewing John as you know, Jonas's not as intricate. Man was a basketball player, right? good basketball player, right? He's He's the bucks right? On my feet. I've assigned ball right here. It's the only is the only NBA artifact that I've ever bought in my life. Because my favorite basketball player ever was Kobe Bryant. He's probably the closest thing ever and not because of that. He's like, X amount of champion or whatever. But it's his character. What I really love about his story like, came from Nigeria, what to Greece. His family was like, like refugee status, basically, like there. And then they used him getting an MBA to bring his family just like powerful story, talk about setbacks. And someone was interviewing him and they're like, and he basically they were number one seed in the playoffs recently, and they lost the number eight seed. How often does it happen? They go, he goes, so do you view this season as a failure? And he literally is like, what kind of question is that? And what he said and his answer was just so eloquent. And he responds by saying, Hey, let me ask you, you weren't you you're at work, right? You're you have your job. You get a promotion every quarter. So if you don't get a promotion and recorded, did you fail? No. Right? And it's a learned that there's there's a season for and I'm learning that myself right now. Like, I'm really frustrated about certain things like, I don't get to date my wife one on one as much as I like, because we have a new like newborn. And but but also know that, you know, we've decided this is our last one. I'll never have that again. So in the season that I'm in, just be resilient, like, not not that like, it doesn't mean that I have a bad marriage if I can't have that time right now. But like, I have that time in a different way. You know,

Curt Storring 45:39

did you learn that like through business? Do you think I absolutely

Eric Freedom 45:43

do business? Yeah. Because, you know, like, there's months where I come home, and like, I remember like, every, every summer or Christmas will hit like people travel and have to like, I would I would go I would just get in the dumps. So my wife, oh, you know how it is, every time it's summer a shoe and had the braces of that deal with me? That'd be so decadent. But but here's the reason why, like, like now when that happens, and it was still cyclical, it's the same seems like kind of it's we're not as loopy because we're, we're pretty healthy business. Now, we were good at what we do. So our attrition is just like, we fluctuate at most 3% on a month to month basis, maybe five on a month to month business basis. Right. But even if when it does happen, does it bother me? Yes, but it's not who I am. That is not a direct reflection of the person that I am. It's what's happening in this season. But in a season 10 years ago, or, or eight years ago, as we're still building and I'm a young, I'm a 26 year old, 27 year old. I take it personal, right? It's like, oh, like, Oh, this is a direct reflection of my inability to provide. Yep. You know, that's, I'm so learning that, you know, we have to be resilient in the face of adversity. We have to understand that setbacks. It's how we view them. Setbacks are given in life. Right. But but but what's in front of a setback, it's going forward. It helps us learn how to develop problem solving skills. And it cultivates us to have this growth mindset if we can if we can let ourselves do that. So

Curt Storring 47:11

yeah, that's, that's a really important point, actually. And I know we gotta wrap ups in here. But that's a really important point, I think about resilience, because so many guys still and like, do I include myself in this, even a few years ago, took everything personally, oh, personally, and it was, like you said, a direct reflection on my failure. Because my expectation of myself was all wrong. I didn't have a long term, understanding that there were seasons, like you said, and that's something we're talking about to its kids season right now, man, we're just not going to have the life that we want in terms of like, one on one dates all the time, because it's kids season, but not a long term view of understanding that it's gonna suck sometimes. And these things are happening for you, not to you. And then you got to drop your perfection expectation and understand that dude, you can fail. And that's okay. And everything doesn't need to be perfect for you to actually, like, be a good man. That's, like, that seems obvious in hindsight, but I did not learn that very gracefully. And so if you're listening to this man, like, I just, I asked you to reflect on the long term nature of your life, you're going to be here 10 years from now God willing, and therefore there will be things that you have to go through to get to the, you know, the promised land, so to speak. So anyway, man, like being a business building things so important to get those along the way. And, dude, let's just wrap up with that man. Like, you got to there's so much that I, this is not at all what I want to talk about. And here we are. But we like we're building this life and through building things in real life. So when I build with my boys, when I build my business, when I build my relationships, when I build my community, with my friends, these are small touch points along the way, for me, my soul, my identity, to go push out into the world and see how I deal with things. Because it's going to be hard things are not going to work out all the time. I'm gonna have like hiccups along the way. But by building things, rather than only consuming, I get those little points, I get those little, like, pings in my armor where I'm like, Oh, I gotta deal with that. But if you sit and do nothing, if you just consume all the time, you never get an opportunity to grow. So I think like, dude, that when I look at you and what you're talking about, you're building all the time. You just like, Dude, you are a builder. And I get it that way, too. Like, you've got all these little touch points that, you know, mid 30s. You've got this. What are we saying? The very beginning about like, you're in this sort of settled spot where you're looking at longer term, you're looking for legacy, because you've had all these touch points. Is that Is that fair?

Eric Freedom 49:37

Absolutely. Yeah, I mean, something that like my so my, my all my closest friends. Their average age is about a decade ahead like their mid 40s. And they always call me an old soul. But I think it's just because I've been through much, and there's a lot more that I'm going to experience but I think we have to lend ourselves to these experience. We have to build resilience through failure, through making mistakes through hurting people through hurting yourself. And, and getting back up every single time, you know. So that's how legacies are made.

Curt Storring 50:05

Yeah, exactly, man. I'm like, Okay, let's Let's book another hour right now because I've just got all these questions that I wrote didn't ask. But anyway. Exactly. Anyway, I appreciate this very much. I love digging into this. And like you said, this is just like the tip of the iceberg. But where do you want to send people in terms of finding out more? You got the book, you got the gym? Yeah.

Eric Freedom 50:24

Easiest way to get in touch with me is probably sliding my DMs at Eric freedom. Actually notes at Coach Eric freedom dad, even on my own Instagram. I actually actually don't spend a whole lot of time on it. So I jump on, like engaged on stuff and jump off. But I Coach Eric freedom. I also have Eric So if you have any like book stuff, I'm working on getting that updated right now, because it hasn't been updated since the pre pre launch of the book. So we got to get the book up there. Now we gotta get all the new projects that I'm working on up there. And yeah, man, that's where you can reach me.

Curt Storring 51:00

Sweet and don't run from the fight. I'm gonna put all these links inside the show notes at Dad.Work slash podcast anyway. So if you guys want to follow Eric, have a shout at him get the book. It's all going to be Dad.Work slash podcast. So, bro, thank you for spending the time with me. And we'll have to do VT where I can actually ask questions I was planning. But I appreciate you. Thank you. Thank you for listening to the Dad.Work podcast. That's it for this episode. But if you would like to stay in touch between weekly episodes, why don't you go over to Instagram and follow me there because I draw up a number of things throughout the week that are related to what we talked about on this podcast but usually go a little bit deeper. provide some tips you can find me on Instagram at dad work dot Kurt. That's da d w o RK dot c u r t. And please, if you have been getting something out of this podcast, if it has touched you if it has improved your marriage, your parenting or your life, would you please leave a quick review on Apple or Spotify. leave a rating. If you have a few extra seconds, leave a quick review. That's the best way that we can get this work in the hands of more fathers. And I truly believe that we change the world, one father at a time because each father that parents better that loves better raises children who do the same. And in just a couple of generations. I feel like we could be living in a world much better than the one we live in today. Your review will help along that path. And I thank you so much for being here to listen until next week. We'll see you then.

Transcribed by

Leave A Review – The Highest Impact, Lowest Cost Way of Supporting the Show

Are you enjoying this podcast? Do you want to say thanks, and help more fathers find this episode? Please leave a review for the Dad.Work podcast on Apple Podcasts.

Ping me at or on Instagram @dadwork.curt and send me a link to your review and I’ll give you a shout-out on the podcast!

Leave A Review

Free 10-Day Elite Dad Challenge

Lead Your Family, Save Your Marriage, and Raise Great Kids

10 Emails. 10 Challenges. 10 Days.
Life-changing Results. Join us 👇

Get our FREE 14-day Better Man, Better Dad Email Series to learn the best tips, tools, and practices I used to suffer less, love more, and parent confidently.

Get our Free 14-Day Better Man, Better Dad Email Series

Learn some of the fundamental tools, practices, and tips I've used to suffer less, love more, and parent confidently.

Become a better man, husband and father...and never miss an episode.

Join the Dad.Work Email Newsletter