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Today’s guest is Jeremy Pryor.
I ask Jeremy to respond and expand on some of his hard-hitting Tweets. Topics include:
- Why good fathers are both high demand and high support (and how to find the balance if you lean too much to one side of the equation)
- The importance of telling your kids the back story so they don’t grow up entitled and take blessings for granted
- How to deal with sibling conflict and create a team-like environment in your family
- The difference between ancient and modern freedom
- Why the word parenting shouldn’t exist (hint: parenting is not gender neutral…dads matters, moms matter)
- A father’s role in teaching his children delayed gratification
Jeremy met his wife April in Jerusalem in 1997 when they were students. They’ve spent the last 20 years building Team Pryor together. They have five kids: Kelsey, Jackson, Sydney, Elisa and Kaira. They live in a multigenerational house with Jeremy’s parents in Fort Thomas, KY just a few miles from Cincinnati, Ohio. They’ve founded and led several businesses and non-profits including Epipheo (a video production agency) Just Sew (a quilt shop), FamilyTeams.com (training content for families) and 1000 Houses (a network of Cincinnati disciple-making households).
Find Jeremy online at:
Speaker 1 0:00
If 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 dead word 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 data work podcast. My name is Curt Storring, your host and the founder of dad work and today I am joined by Jeremy Pryor. This is an awesome conversation guys have been really enjoying what Jeremy has been putting out lately. And we go deep talking about a whole bunch of stuff including how a trip to Israel drastically changed Jeremy's view of fatherhood and family. Why the modern Western idea of family is backward how to create a family team rather than a household of loosely connected individuals. How to create a strong family culture. Why optimizing for spending way more time with your family is worth a small decrease in efficiency at the office, a father's true role and why it's so different from what society thinks today, the multi generational mindset required to truly succeed as a father and family leader. And finally, and most shockingly, for so many of you I'm sure what bluey gets wrong about fatherhood, coming in hot. Anyway, Jeremy met his wife April in Jerusalem in 1987. And their students, they spent the last 20 years building team prior together. They've got five kids and they live in a multi generational house with Jeremy's parents in Fort Thomas, Kentucky just a few miles from Cincinnati, Ohio. They founded and led several businesses and nonprofits including a pitch to a video production agency. Just so a quilt shop family teams.com just training content for families and 1000 houses a network of Cincinnati disciplemaking households, you can check out everything that I just mentioned, including other links to Jeremy stuff, his podcast, the social media links, everything else Dad.Work slash podcast, you can check out family teams.com For more about the family team have specific discussions that we have here. But like I said, data org slash podcast is going to be where you find everything that has to do with Jeremy and what he's been working on as well. This was massively valuable podcasts for me personally. And so I know you guys are gonna get a ton of value out of this. Thank you to Jeremy for sharing all this wisdom and for doing the work he's doing. It's actually it's just incredible to think of family in this way. And it takes you leaving the modern cultural narrative. And that's hard for a lot of guys, because we're so into it, we can't even see the forest for the trees sometimes. But I want you to open your mind when you're listening to this, because I think that Jeremy is onto something very important. And I would like to build my family in the way that Jeremy talks about here, which is multi generational family team. Okay, so let's get to this episode with Jeremy Pryor. And guys, if you haven't already signed up for the 10 day elite dad challenge at Dad.Work slash challenge, I encourage you to do that because that is where I go into 10 days of 10 actions that you can take to become an elite family leader. And that's going to make a massive difference in how you parent how you are in your marriage, and just the trust and the respect you get in your household. So get our work slash challenge is where you find that let's jump in today's episode of the downward podcast with Jeremy Pryor. Here we go. But yeah, dads, we're back for another episode of the downward podcast round two with Jeremy Pryor. First of all, you want to just give us a quick bio, who you are what you do family ministry, everything else they're working on. And we'll dive in. Yeah. Hey,
Jeremy Pryor 3:49
guys, Kurt, thanks for doing this. I'm excited to talk to you all. So yeah, I'm live in the Kentucky area grew up in Seattle, have five kids married to my wife, April, we met each other in Jerusalem. Back in 1997. We've been mostly I did, I did a lot of ministry kind of things for the first eight years. And then for the last, I guess, 23 years, we've just been starting businesses. So we've started a whole series of different companies that we have worked on as a family and with different partners. And so today, we work in a an organization called Family teams. That's probably our biggest effort right now. And we're working to try to restore the biblical blueprint of family to the church. And so we have lots of different events. We I do a lot of coaching of dads that are transitioning from and just families transitioning out of employment into entrepreneurship, mostly for the sake of integrating their faith and family into the rest of their lives. That's a huge passion of mine,
Curt Storring 4:47
man. Okay, well, you know what, that's why I'm so interested in what you do, because that was the thing that connected me to you. And that's actually why you and I are going to meet in like five days is the integrated mastermind, so I'm really looking forward to that. Excited to get that whole? I mean, it says it all right, the integration. That's what I'm looking for. How do I integrate my family into my business and my ministry into my fun? Like you said, I think last time on the podcast, like, I don't want to know when I'm having fun versus family time versus ministry time versus working time. It's all the same, which is like super aspirational for me. So anyway, we'll be in a few days. I'm excited about that. But so guys, what we're gonna do today, Jeremy throws things up on his Instagram, like little tweets. And they're just screenshots from what I can tell it, I went on Twitter, because I'm not really on there. And I'm like, Oh, he's got tons of tweets that are like, actually really brilliant ideas for dads that I think you guys want to hear. But what I wanted to do is just like, here's the 140 characters, maybe you can put more on there. I haven't been on Twitter for so long. Whatever. It's not even called Twitter anymore, I don't think but like, let's let's read through a tweet here, because it's an idea. And I want Jeremy to expound on that a little bit. And I'll jump in with a few questions along the way. But these are like, there's only like three people liking the tweets, because for some reason, don't have that many followers. So let's, number one, go follow him on Twitter. But number two guys, like these ideas need to be heard by the 1000s of people who listen to this podcast, because I think they'll help you do what Jeremy just said, which is become a better father and integrate everything into your life. So I'm gonna start reading. And then I want you to talk about what the idea was behind that. So the first one, the tweet says, low demand parenting means our kids will struggle meeting their full potential. Low support parenting means kids will feel empty, vulnerable and unloved. Optimal parenting is both high demand and high support. Men. Can you define some terms here? low demand, low support, high support? What are these things mean? Because I think there's a huge opportunity here, which is why it's number one.
Jeremy Pryor 6:36
Yeah, this is huge. So and this really came from Daniel coils book, the culture code. And so he describes what really good coaching is, it's probably my favorite fatherhood book of all time. And it's not about fatherhood, at all. It's basically about how you create a certain kind of culture within an organization. And because I believe families are startups, and that fathers are leaders and coaches, head coaches of their organization, call a family, then you really need to level up your coaching skills, and coil and there was a team, I don't know who who actually did the research, but they actually did a pretty exhaustive research on who was the greatest coach of all time. And I think it was Popovich, I think he coached the was at the Spurs. And what they did was they tried to control for, you know, all the variables that that you're going to get with a team, you know, money and all kinds of variables that would create outliers. And they said, Okay, if everything was equal, and you could just focus on the coaching itself, what is who was the greatest coach, who took, you know, the mediocre team, or sort of a, maybe an average team and brought them to absolute greatness through the act of coaching. And that that was the research, that's who they determined was the greatest coach of all time, just by the results he was able to create, given where he started. And, and there's a lot of crazy insights about coaching. But one of them was this idea that you need to raise the bar on your demand and support at the same time. And the problem is that most coaches, most fathers tend to be either high support, low demand or high demand, low support. And we tend to go waffle back and forth generationally. So you have, you know, the stereotypical son who was raised by a high demand low support dad. And so he just was miserable and could never please his dad brought the report card home and the dad was like, Well, why did you get this one B, never said a good job, son, I'm proud of you son, any of those things, it was all demand, demand, demand, low support, low support, and you get just one, you know, inkling of a of a of a positive encouragement from from his dad was just really difficult. And so of course, what he does in the next generation is he's like, I'm not going to be that coming, Dad, I don't care son, what your grades are, I don't care if you perform. I just love you, though, who you are. And so he goes, low demand, high support. And this, this, this goes back and forth, back and forth across generations, because we don't seem to understand. Because if you just go by your instinct, you tend to be one of the others. I tend to be a a low demand high support father, that's definitely my default setting. So everybody listen to this, please take a second and try to discover your default setting. Are you you know, are you just naturally high support low demand or you just naturally high demand low support. And what really creates an incredible experience, when you're being coached is to experience both at the same time, and because very, very few people actually naturally do both well, then you just have to choose to find a way to level up the one that's lower and and this creates an amazing experience for for children. They love it. One of the I would say one of the greatest myths today I would say about children and about family and fatherhood is that kids don't want high demand fathers. Again, because I think we've all heard the horror stories or in some of us have experienced them, have the high demand low support father? Well, we don't understand that, that no, no, like, people need the expectations to be raised. Like, if you just tell your kids look, you know, I just whoever you are, whatever you do, is always going to be good. It's always acceptable, there are no standards here. Your children will underperform their entire life likely. And you as a father need to help your children level up, they need to become the best of at whoever they are. Now, I think that one of the problems that I think oftentimes we struggle with is you do have to calibrate those high demands are those high expectations for the individual children. And this is why I think, you know, we have a small number of children, we're not given 100 kids to Father, we're given however many I have five, that's a lot, but I was still a small enough number that I should be able to dial in, hey, this is what I expect from you. And one of the greatest things that a coach does, is that they can figure out what you could do if you were really trying your best. And the great coaches have an instinct for that. And so when they watch a player, they stand back and watch a quarterback. And they're like, You know what, you're just not trying hard enough. Like, I know, you could do better than this, you know? And so, and that is incredibly motivating, right? Would you rather have a coach that let's say properly dials in what you're actually actually capable of? And calls you to that higher standard? Or would you rather have a coach that Pat's, you on the back and says, Yeah, you threw 18 interceptions, but you know, that's great. We love just any, just the fact that you got out there and tried, here's your participation trophy, like, you know, that is not going to help you, as an individual succeed in life. And, and so we have to learn how to raise both of these at the same time. And I think there was a generation that really did struggle with the low support side of things, you know, you do have those demanding, judgmental fathers who never really understood how to encourage his children. And, and so and we tend to because we were in an age of just hypersensitivity, those stories actually resonate much more deeply with us, we were far more appalled at the high demand low support father, than we are of the high support low demand father. And so I'm here to say, I just want to I just want to say like both are bad, like both both are going to lead to sub optimal outcomes for your children. And so and so you have to, because so many of us are already kind of dialed into the low demand, high support side of this, many of us just really want to constantly encourage our kids and Good job, buddy. And we're just running around like just endlessly praising children. And, and that that creates expectations for our kids. We think that there's nothing we think there's no cost to overpraising children today. And there is a cost to overpraising children, and it is a day, every time you praise your child, you are communicating to them where the standard is, if your goal is just to lower the bar so far, you know, and just push it all the way into the ground so that your kids can trip over it and, and be successful, it will really impact their ability to succeed in life. And fathers are built to stretch their children. And so yeah, that's the overarching principle I'm wrestling with there.
Curt Storring 13:45
Man, thank you for that. I love that. Because as I continue to learn more and grow more, as a father as a Christian, I'm like, oh, there is this? I would call the middle way that the path if you will, that is both and I keep seeing the fact that there is the right way to do things. And then there's a ditch on either side. That's right. And it seems like this is definitely the ditch and it's just like what I say about you know what I think mature masculinity is which is hard to kill easy to love. Both of those things must be in high enough, you know, levels to be that fully mature man and here, man I I'm maybe different because I'm like, I'm high demand, are you and I have really had to work on the high support as well. Focus so maybe just for like, I want to move on to some of the other ones. But quickly, what are some of the things that a high demand low support dad can do? And what are the some of the things that the opposite if you know, you're looking for more demand out of your children? I think even just knowing how important it is, should be a good motivator, but tactically are there things that come to mind? Yeah,
Jeremy Pryor 14:48
so I would say if you're if you if you tend to be like me, were you just you want to overpraise constantly you want to constantly signal support, and you want to lower the bar. I think that one One of the things that you need to really work on. So one of the greatest tips, I think, is to praise effort and don't Instead of praising things like intelligence or anything that's innate to your child, there's been a lot of research done on this. And so, if you because you can imagine, like, I think the research would basically say that, if you take a group of kids, and and they perform the task, and half of them, you say, you know, you're so smart, like, it's amazing how smart you are, and the other kids, you're like, Wow, you tried really hard, like, your effort was awesome. Like, then then then they go and do the next task, it's very predictable, that the ones praised for effort will do far better at the task. And the the, the ones prayed for praise for their intelligence will actually do worse than them previously. And so part of it is if you want to praise your children careful about the topic, praise your kids for things can they can level up in, like, like their effort. And then I think another thing is really helpful for low demand fathers, is to think about things from a scale of one to 10, instead of like, awesome, you know, perfect, great, and, you know, and then oftentimes a low low demand parent won't, won't say anything negative. But really stamp sand back, when you see your kids do something, give them a grade, like judge them, and say, Okay, that was about a six, kids love that. They're like, what a six? What's a seven? What's an eight, like a whole world opens up for them that they could do better? You know, and then so if you find something you're coaching your children in, whether it's like cleaning the kitchen, or you know, supporting your, you know, their mother, or, you know, doing something around the house, or do something in sports, or try try to judge them on a scale of one to 10 and then tell them how to get better. Okay, that was a six, like a seven, or an eight might look like this, why don't you try that again, like, that's what you need to do and your load your load demand, you have to start to look at scales instead of, you know, just a yes, no pass fail. And I think the Pass Fail thing is really, really is difficult for it'll, it'll cause a low demand Father, to not not know how to actually coach because, you know, they passed, what else can I say? I don't know, that was a six, that was a seven, that was a four, you know, you can do a lot better. Let's try that again. So that's what it looks like I would say on the other side, a, a high demand, low support. Father, I think needs to there's, there's a sense in the book, the culture code talks about this really well. You have to find a way to signal unconditional belonging to your children, like you are always my son, I you are, I love who you are, I love how God made you i There is a sense of like peace and acceptance, not an acceptance that I am for who you are becoming right you don't do it in a way that undermines everything that you're going to do on the demand side. But you definitely want to demonstrate that they are they are safe with you, that that that their love, your love for them is going to persist regardless of their performance. Again, you can still judge a child and let them know there's a long ways they can go and have high standards without necessarily tying acceptance to that. And I think that, hey, you're a part of this family. And you know, and so saying, I love you, son. I'm you know, the ultimate high support moment in all of human history was the moment when God said to his his son, you are My beloved Son in whom I'm well pleased. I think a lot of times high demand fathers have a hard time saying that they instinctually think by saying that they're they're signaling you have nothing left to do. And so but no, you're saying I delight in you as my son or daughter, I enjoy you, I and you are mine. And I love that about you and and so you want your child to feel that way. But I think having on the other side, having kind of more of a scale than that pass fail allows that father to say no, no, you're not signaling your attend in every area of life. And that's why I think going back and actually giving your children a scale on which they can they can improve will help you kind of release your heart to be affectionate and accepting and loving of your children without necessarily suggesting that that they they have arrived.
Curt Storring 19:33
Amazing. I love this format already. Thank you for all of that. And yeah, you're right. I think that is so key. For me to continue to look back on is what a God the Father did God the Jesus His Son? Yes. Which is he says I love you. So he loves his firms and in that gives him an identity. I think that's right, which is you are my son and that is so important. Work. I'm doing it myself right now. You know, with the Father Sal Thankfully, this time around, but let's move on to the second one which says is a quote of a tweet again from Jeremy fathers tell your kids the backstory to our children blessings just appear out of nowhere. So they naturally take all these gifts as entitlements. It's our job to reveal what really goes into what we take for granted. And the reason I picked this quote, that was the other quote, by the way, the reason I picked this one is because there's so much of my story. There's so many gifts and blessings that I feel in my life that only came from hardship. Yeah, that I don't want my kids to have to go through. But I want them to learn the lesson. Right? And so let's talk a little bit about this one, like, how can we give them that lesson by telling our struggle, I guess might be the point of this one?
Jeremy Pryor 20:40
Yeah. Yeah, I think I think that, that children in today that a lot of this does stem from the idea that we are telling individuals in the West that their own personal individual story is all that there ever was all that matters. And I think that the backstory of where we came from, as a family, you know, what we went through to get here, creates gratitude creates perspective creates identity. And there for the modern Western family, there tends to be no arena for those stories. And so what in I don't think we realized the cost, the cost of just, you know, having your kids born into a world in which let's say it took two or three generations to get to a place where we own a house, and we're pretty financially stable. And, you know, our borders are protected by people that that are that are constantly fighting for our freedom. And all of that has been secured. You when you when you inherit all of that, and our children in the West have inherited enormous amounts from those who have struggled before, then there, if there's nobody telling the story, then there's no perspective, there's no gratitude, and you are robbing your children and have all of the the motivation that they might otherwise, because they may have to fight again, for those things. They, we don't know what kind of world our children are going to grow up. And when we do, we are in this kind of weird place where a lot of a lot of families are going to struggle more than the next generation, especially financially, but maybe in other areas as well, then their parents or grandparents did. And so it's really important to tell the backstory and to say, Hey, this is because you know, you will take for granted those things and things you tend to take for granted, you tend to lose. And that whole, you know, sort of quote about those hard times and, you know, producing weak men and this cycle that is constantly happening, that I think that's created, because nobody's taking responsibility to actually tell those stories. And so that, that there needs to be an arena for that. And so, you know, for us on the Sabbath, when we enter into like a timeless moment as a family, where we tend to have about four generations at our typical Sabbath dinner. And this is every Friday night. And so we've had, you know, the older you are in the family, the more responsibility you have for telling the backstory, because you you remember, like when my, my grandmother was at our Sabbath table, she was spanning seven generations. And so if you think about like, she has a relationship with people who were, you know, who were who lived in the in the mid 1800s, you know, all the way to she's seeing people who are going to, you know, persist into the deep into the 21st century. You know, that's an incredible span of perspective. And, you know, our culture today has almost no value for our elders, because we don't care about the backstory, we don't understand how the stories themselves, create identities, and they create character. And so that's creating a place for that, and having a time in your week, where you are challenging people in your family to tell those stories. If you don't have somebody upstream in your family, grandparents who can be doing that, then start to do that yourself, like start to craft those stories. How has God been good to us. And you see, there's a there's a psalm, remember the which Psalm it is, but it really, it commands this, like tell the future generations, have them, tell their children and have their children tell their children, all of the things the Lord has done for you. And even when it talks about the Sabbath, in Deuteronomy five when we're given the commandment to keep the Sabbath, you know, God says, so that you remember that you were slaves in Egypt, like remember the backstory, I remember where you came from. And I always think that somebody who remembers that they came from slavery is going to have a totally different psychology about the challenges of life than somebody who says, I inherited all this because I deserve it, you know, and that that is the default, people don't realize that when your kids have no gratitude, that makes sense. Like they all these things, these entitlements, they just existed, you created that nice little nursery for them, and you put them down in it and you've provided all this food and all this education, and all this abundance and all this entertainment, and all of these things, and you don't realize that the medium is the message you've inadvertently communicated to your child that they deserve all of this because you're not asking them to earn anything to do all of this. So they're just getting dumped. on them blessing after blessing after blessing after blessing after blessing. And the least we can do is provide the backstory so that they could begin to have a perspective that could give them gratitude.
Curt Storring 25:11
Yes, I love that. And one thing that I just want to touch on because I know this is a dish for me, is when you're telling the story, I mean, tell it is the narrative don't tell it in in frustration or annoyance because I have been. I mean, I have been, you know, I don't know if I want to use the word trigger, because there's so many connotations, but I'm just gonna say, I was triggered to a point where I was like, Don't you know what it was like, for me growing up? You have it's so easy, right? There's that there's that whole story, which I know a lot of dads can get into. And it's like, that's probably not the right way to be telling your story. But if there's a narrative to it, and I think learning how to tell stories is probably a great thing for most men and fathers to do. But where did you come from? What were the struggles? How did you overcome? And then like, yeah, like you said, deliver the blessing of that, without the assumption for taking it for granted. Yeah, that's wonderful. And I love as well that you said to just start if you're the first person in your family can do this, because I hear from a lot of guys are like, Why don't have a dad or grandfather would like I'm a first generation chain breaker so to speak. And it starts with you.
Jeremy Pryor 26:14
That's it. Now that story, and that's a powerful story. I think that's the most powerful story that was Abraham story. Abraham, you know, he had to leave his his father who was an idol worshiper in order to start a whole new family line. And so yeah, to tell those stories, so that your children can see what and I think part of the I think there's a quote, something like, it's important that when you start on third base, you don't you don't imagine that you hit a triple. Right. And I think that's, that's really important. But I think part of the reason why you want to explain your children is not just because you're on third base. And so look at how amazing your life is, it's also, it also raises the bar for what you expect from them. And that is that I expect you to get all the way home, like I yeah, I did get you all the way to third base, you know, maybe me and your grandparents and your great grandparents, whoever it was, but it this is what was all inhabited in the single command to honor your father and mother. That's that command in Scripture is designed so that the next generation has a sense of gravity and gratitude for the past. And that there's something really destructive that happens to the character of somebody who does not have does not honor their father and mother does not have that. So you want to even even if you are that chain breaker, you want to really try to mind the past for anything positive. If there's anything that your parents or grandparents or great grandparents did, or if not, then you know the wider culture that you live in. What do you appreciate, let's take a minute and just appreciate whatever we have, I live in a really so I don't I live in a town that that I didn't grew up in, I grew up in a town south of Seattle, now we live in Northern Kentucky. But in this town, I am constantly trying to understand the history of this town. Because there's so many cool things happening in this town in terms of just there's it's very safe. There's a lot of community, there's something in the ethos, the spirit of this town, some things I don't like but many things that I find really amazing. And my children are growing up here. And so it's like, let's honor the people who created this, we didn't create this, we just came in and bought a house here. You know, we pay taxes. But I don't for a minute think that somehow I deserve this, or we our family deserves all of the what has been created in this place. And so we we want to like study the history ever, where you're going study the history, what was going on in this town, what happened in this country. This is why we study history to honor our father and mother. And that's a very broad command that creates this character of, of gratitude of perspective. But I think it also creates vision. It allows children to map where they're at. So they know how to take the family to the next step. And this is this is a huge problem. A lot of people believe that when you give children resources, then they invariably will have less, less resilience, and they will have less, they will become lazy and entitled. And it's not resources that create laziness and entitlement, its resources. Without vision. It's when you it's when you don't say look, this exists so that we you can take the family further. One of my favorite examples of that is the Kennedy family. So Joseph Kennedy, he was a patriarch of the family had nine children. He was a third richest man in America. And you can say a lot of things about his children in terms of like things they did or didn't do or should have done. But one thing they were not, and that is lazy. You would think the third richest man in America would give birth to a huge brood of lazy children. And that is not what happened. Why very simple. Joseph Kennedy came in front of his kit children and said, I'm going to give you guys resources for one very specific vision, political power. And he told them a story about how there was a constant struggle that their family was having with people in politics. And so we're going to take over politics, we're going to take the presidency. And so you have, you know, obviously John F. Kennedy, Bobby Kennedy who wanted to become a president, you had Teddy Kennedy who even he ran for the nomination, three of his sons all tried to get the presidency now, right. Currently, we have another Kennedy who is trying to win the presidency. That came because because there was a, there was a patriarchal vision given to that family that was so powerful. And if you if you are going to hand your kids a lot of resources, please give them a vision big enough, like to be worthy of those resources.
Curt Storring 30:40
I love that I yeah, I got nothing out of that. Let's move on to the next one. Thank you for that. This is one that I want to get your opinion on. This is a tweet that I think you retweeted and I saw it too. And I was like, oh, man, I should try that out. And it's from Nick Huber, who is the sweaty startup guy, really big on Twitter right now. But he says every time my boys fight with each other, I say, What team are you on? They both say Huber team? Dad says What does that mean? Kids say we help each other? When does this work? Is this a good idea? And how can we ensure that our kids are on the same page rather than bickering with each other? I know a lot of guys struggle with that. Kids just coming at each other. It's going to happen sometimes, obviously. But does this actually work?
Jeremy Pryor 31:22
Yes, it does. And I think I think you have to understand what is what this entails. So kids in our culture today believe that the family is a springboard for individual success. So the family has a finite amount of resources, mom has a finite amount of attention. Dad has a finite amount of attention. We have a finite amount of rooms in our house, a finite amount of food at the table, all these things. And so as an individual who gets a finite piece of the resources of the family, you know, can you drive me to this friend's house? Can you drive me over to I want to do this sport. When you think that way about family? What it turns every sibling into a rival by default. Why? Because you have a fixed pie, right? And if you know I'm if there's only two kids, then I get half and you could have all of a sudden a third kid comes what's what happens to the pie? You know, now I get a third Oh, now it comes a fourth kid. Now I get a quarter. Like it makes sense why if the family is a springboard for individual success, there's going to be a lot of rivalry between siblings because they are taking resources from each other, this finite pie. Now I don't believe at all that that's the family. But I think that the vast majority, almost almost 100% of Western families think about the family and those terms that the family is a springboard for individual success. They raised their family that way, there's a totally different way to think about family. And this is what Nick is kind of articulating. And this is definitely the way that that I tried to raise our family. And that is we're a team, okay, we together are trying to accomplish things. Now, if you are, if we're all in all individuals fighting over the same scarce resources, we're all rivals. But if we're on a team, and we're together trying to accomplish something, then every new person that comes on the team becomes not a liability, but an asset. It's like, oh my gosh, I just had just got a teammate. Like, how amazing is that? Like, why wouldn't be able to accomplish way more together? Because there are more kids in the family? And so why in the world would you constantly be fighting and competing against your sibling, if you're a team. And so in order to make this transition, you have to start with identity. And what what Nick is doing in his tweet is he's describing the process of giving your children an identity as teammates as opposed to as rivals, again, it's really important understand that their rivalry, that is that is totally normal. And that is default. So you have to do the work as a father, to begin to convince your children. No, we're on the same team. And I think sometimes, you actually need to create arenas where this actually happens, where you as a team are going out on the field together. And you can sense and feel the strength of the sibling relationships actually working as a team to accomplish something that we could not otherwise accomplish. apart from each other. So so I'm constantly trying to find arenas. We just got back from three weeks in Seattle, our family regularly goes out to a camp and leaves a boot camp for three weeks. It's an intense program, I directed me and my wife, and we bring all of our kids and it is like it is game time for our family because it's we're serving, you know, hundreds of different people this camp, and we're given 20 high school kids. And so I come back to this arena because I can sense that it causes my children to see each other as teammates. And so we've done this as our fourth year. We've we've done this, this event, we also take our kids overseas a lot in order to experience this. I mean, you, you go to a third world country with your kids and man, they will be teammates. Like, it's like us against the world, you need to put your family you need to you need to practice and then take your family into the game. And if you do that, then your kids will start to experience Wow, this siblings and as an ally in so you want to him sometimes people experienced this grown up in rough neighborhoods, you know, and he grew up in a rough neighborhood and you're you're protected by your siblings, all of a sudden, you're a team, but you grew up in a safe neighborhood. Again, the default is rivals. And so you have to find things that challenge your family, collectively, and take your family into those arenas, and your kids will start. So if you start with this language, we're Team prior, you know, we're Team Huber, if you start with this language, and you create this identity, and then take your family into that one of those arenas, to allow them to actually sense it. When you get back your your, they will see each other differently. And that's what that's what we're going for. And that takes work.
Curt Storring 36:09
And I think one of the other things that comes to mind here is maybe having that vision you were talking about in the last question. The father needs to have a vision so that there is somewhere for them to go together. So is that
Jeremy Pryor 36:19
part of it? Absolutely. Yeah. So you have to figure out what that is, what what was what's the big and your vision has to align with your resources, Jesus told the story of the talents, and and so what I always really so Kurtz joined our group integrated and one of the things I've constantly challenging people, is a fatherhood mastermind, everyone in the group is a high performing entrepreneur. And so one of my biggest concerns for these dads is that you are 10 talent men with one talent vision. And that is exactly what Jesus is confronting. If you if God has provided you with 10 talents, if he's given you a business, giving you skills, giving you lots of kids, giving you an amazing wife, whatever those talents are, that you have, as a family, it's okay to be one talent person with a one talent vision, that's fine. Jesus is like, he has tons of grace for that. But it's not cool to be a five talent or 10 talent, family with a one talent vision. And so in that is on the that is on the Father. And so if you find yourself with an abundance of resources, with an abundance of relational strength as a family, or spiritual strength as a family, then you need to have a vision that will challenge whatever those resources are, that will make it difficult that you find the biggest mountain you your family can climb that successfully in Go for it. And there should be a risk involved. This should be really, really difficult.
Curt Storring 37:47
That is such a convicting phrase, a 10 talent man with a one television who I'm feeling that one already. So thank you. Alright, the next one that I want to put on here is blasting modern culture, which is one of my favorite pastimes, modern culture has redefined freedom. Ancient Freedom is the ability to overcome one's base impulses in order to follow our good intentions. Modern freedom is following our base impulses without regard to the consequences, ancient freedom phrases for modern freedom. That's the end of the quote there. Man, the modern goal today seems to just be like, how comfortable can I be? And I think this is a beautiful way to tear that apart. So is there anything else to say on this one?
Jeremy Pryor 38:29
Well, I think it's I think it is important to say that you do need, you do need to realize that the definition of freedom has changed. Like they took me a long time to realize we're given this default definition of freedom, which is I need the ability to indulge my impulses. If you read philosophy or Theology at all, you will constantly hear people talking about the problem, that the thing that stops us from freedom are all of the things that are inside of us. Like the biggest battle, every man has to fight us within himself. And so we already have a we're enslaved by nature, right? Jesus said that, like everyone who sins is a slave to sin. And so we are struggling with slavery constantly. And so freedom looks like having the kind of character having the power of the Holy Spirit, having the ability to overcome all of these impulses that are naturally going to drive you into things that you don't want places. You do not want to go into Proverbs, I always love the idea that the Father is taking his son, you know, around the village and pointing out different things like you see that, that man who's like, you know, his field is just destroyed his kids don't respect them. He's drunk half the time. He didn't, he didn't set out to bleed that family in that direction. That is something that happens and this is we have to give our sons and daughters this understanding of how slavery happens. How okay, this slow, degrading process of giving in your impulses, not knowing how to overcome all of the things that are happening within you. You have to for First, you have to fight that battle first. And that battle never ends, like we always are struggling with the flesh. This is a constant refrain in the New Testament. And so there's so much about freedom and philosophy and theology and in the Bible, and it's always talking about the the constant struggle we have internally with our flesh. And so and so that's the historic idea. Now, you have just this constant refrain from the culture about you need more freedom, you need more rights, and they're actually talking about the opposite of what has always been the definition of that freedom. And that is that it's always an external force, and that these external forces are are trying to inhibit your freedom, take away choices from you. And if you could just get more freedom dust dumped on, you dumped on you more choices, then your life is gonna get better and better and better and better. And that is a total lie. Like the problem is you have to overcome these these enslaving problems and tensions, enslaving patterns, enslaving elements of your own flesh and nature. And it's an overcoming those things with that you really achieve freedom we have, we have so much our problems, and especially in the West, are 100 times more within than any kind of external problem that we're having with freedom. So I think I think that for me, I had to, like, I had to listen, every time somebody says something about freedom, particularly in the political world, and just say, what are they saying? Are they talking about the are they talking about me real freedom, like freedom from all of these impulses so that I can live the life that I I know that God has designed for us to live in? Or are they talking about more external freedom, so that I can give in to those impulses more frequently. That is, those are so totally different. One is just abject foolishness. And the other is has been is the time honored truth about the way that freedom and slavery really works,
Curt Storring 42:02
it reminds me of the idea of boundaries, and having to be a part of a thriving within some boundaries. And for most of us, myself included growing up in this culture that we're talking about right now. It's like, Man, if I can just have like, zero boundaries, and be totally free to do everything. Awesome. But guess you're right. That was cool. When I was 16. And now I look back on like, Why didn't anybody give me any rules or boundaries, like, I'm not going to make that mistake. But someone told me this way, and I'm not sure who it was. I can't give due credit, but it's like, imagine if you just had a hose running in a field. And you just run the hose, while there's like a massive flood in the field gets ruined. But if you put that hose within the confines of a pool, you have a wonderful thing that then is within the boundaries. So I think that's really important for guys to understand, it's really important for me to continue to reflect on actually because freedom sovereignty is a big one for me that I get caught up in, and I need to be sure that I'm looking for freedom from rather than freedom to so thank you for breaking that down. There's no one here that you know, it goes again back into culture, but it's about fathering and mothering and this is one of my favorite topics that you touch on particularly the bluey thing, which we won't get into here because we got into last time. But it says quote, our culture confuses good parenting with good mothering because it hates fathering children need mothers and fathers when fathers strive to become good mothers, they robbed their children of half of what they need to mature and quote, man, you're gonna get canceled for even like tweeting or even thinking this. And I had a my, my most popular real, like got like 90,000 views is saying that parenting is not gender neutral. Would you please go a little bit more into this? Because this is so shocking for even what I would consider probably like conservative Christian men. This is still a shocking idea.
Jeremy Pryor 43:51
That's right. Yeah, yeah, this is a huge one. So yeah, I 100% agree. I actually don't think there is such a thing as parenting. So in in the New Testament, there is no word for parenting. In the Greek or in the Hebrew Bible. The word parents doesn't even exist a single time. That does exist in modern Hebrew, but it doesn't exist in Biblical Hebrew. It didn't exist back then. Every time you'd expect to say parents, it always says father or mother. That's why it doesn't say, honor your parents, and you will live long on the earth. That's not the commandment. It says, Honor your father and mother. And so there are two verbs. We should I wish we if we could wave a magic wand and get rid of the word parenting, and only have fathering and mothering all of this who gets super clear, because I actually think gender is about fathering and mothering. I think that when we are trying this is where the confusion in our culture has really erupted is that we don't understand that when you're raising a young boy or a young girl, a son or daughter, when you begin to engender the things that you want them to do why you would train a son differently than a daughter Every one of those things is because you're preparing them to be a father or a mother. That is why gender exists. We know that from Genesis one, right? It male and female, He created them. And then he said, Be fruitful and multiply. So he created male and female in order to form this thing called the family. That's the reason why it exists. And when you confuse young children about their gender, the primary thing that's occurring is you are robbing from them, the future of being a father or a mother. And I think that even if you're staying single for your whole life, like Mother Teresa was single, but she was still a mother. Like, even if you decide I want to give my life for whatever cause, and want to choose not to not to raise a physical family, then you should still if you're a man, Father, Father, spiritual sons, like Paul, Paul was single, and he constantly call himself a father. And you know, he called Timothy his son, nobody is exempt from this. Everybody who is a, who's a male is a aspiring father, and everyone who's a female is a aspiring mother. That's what those gender categories are all about. And so when you get into the realm of parenting, it's really important to separate those and I think that because the culture is confused about the nature of parenting, they only see one thing one androgynous non gendered activity, they have chosen to make parenting mothering. So what I hear, you know, when I read parenting books, or when I hear people talk about parenting, I only hear it's like 98%, mothering, mothering, mothering, mothering. And, you know, our culture hates fathering, it doesn't understand fathering, this goes back to our first conversation about the nature of the high demand, high support father, there's something you know, mothers exist, and are wired to really dial in to the specific and especially immediate needs of her children. Right? Right. Good. A lot of this comes from the need to care for infants. And that's a beautiful thing. And man, it's so wonderful for children to have that present, constantly empathetic person in their life, who's who's mothering them, but there's also a need for them to be pushed into the future for somebody to see who they could be, and to begin to raise the bar and, and create challenge in their life. And so in mothers can do this, but But I think when mothers are, are really good at this, they're really fathering children. Right. And and in some ways, I think the best thing to do allow the, these genders to fully express all of their innate wiring in the in the context of the family, and if outside the context of the family, a woman wants to experience something that's different than that, that's fine. Or a man wants to experience something, but in the family, when both husband and wife, mother and father choose to mother, the children and nobody takes on the responsibility of the Father, then you're you're going to be holding your kids back and you're taking from them something that that's an innate part of who, what they need for their own character development and for their future. And so I think that this is a such a unpopular message. Because to suggest this is there's there's several major objections people have, but none of the objections I think, are, are in truth, they're really coming from a spirit of empathy. So one major objection is empathy for single single mothers. It seems like you know, there's a understandable concern people have, which is single motherhood is incredibly difficult. These women are heroes, they are working hard to do everything they can to keep their family together, many of them have been abandoned by the father of their children. And on top of all the struggles, they're going to inevitably experience, you're going to add to that the reality that you'll never be a good father and your children will always be disadvantaged, like what kind of monster are you to, to be saying this now, the monster you are somebody who needs to, he needs to tell the truth, and say, these women are amazing. They're heroes, the many of their many of the problems in their families are caused by the father, there are certainly exceptions to that there are women who, who have brought this on themselves, but but there are many amazing single mothers out there. And we're not trying to denigrate them. But but this is the impulse, that out of compassion, we're going to hide the nature of the truth is, is not a good impulse, like we need to be able to do both. We can't redefine truth and therefore reengineer all of society, and all of us just decline into into increasing struggle and instability, because we refuse to face and and we're, our empathy is causing us to say things that aren't true. So the other situation I think people are really conscious of is same sex families. And so if you have two men or two women in raising children, is there are the children going to inevitably Really, like miss something, right? And of course, the answer is yes, of course they are. First of all, they're not going to you are, just by designing that kind of family, you're, they're not going to have the advantage of their biological mother and father. And you've actually created that often, in many cases through things like surrogacy. But even if you if you adopt and rescue a child who otherwise would be, would be in a worse situation, it's important to acknowledge, again, the truth that in in that relationship, they are going to likely lack any, like one half of that equation, you know, it's having two fathers or two mothers is not is not the ideal design for a family, that ideal design is that there be a biological father and a biological mother raising children. And there are all kinds of exceptions to that that are necessary because of the foul and because of circumstances, but we shouldn't get confused about what's ideal. And we should, as a society understand that and, and we should promote that.
Curt Storring 51:03
Yeah, thank you for saying all that. And that's one of the things that I have started telling, single mothers who asked me on my instagram page are like, What should I do? And like, You got to get them around, somebody can fall to them. That's right, find a coach. Find some man in the church, find some like jujitsu or whatever, yes. And get him around your son, especially around other men. Let me just ask logistically, if you got a hard cut off in four minutes here,
Jeremy Pryor 51:28
we're good. Yeah, I'm good. I go a lot later.
Curt Storring 51:30
Okay, I won't take you too much longer. I just want to make sure we get to another one or two here. It's funny that you said that about the role of mother being much more like right now much more instantaneous, and the needs that are covered, because the next one that I've got here is I'm gonna read the tweet here, quote, a father is God's plan for teaching children delayed gratification. One of the gifts you can give your kids is to be a brick wall in a few carefully chosen areas of their life. Love includes helping our kids learn to deal with the storm of emotions, that comes when No means no. And quote, and I think that's exactly the opposite of what you just said about mothering. Do you want to touch on that just in terms of the actual fathering message there?
Jeremy Pryor 52:08
Yeah. Yeah, this is it, this is something that we need to agree is a positive in a child's life that, that sometimes they especially if they're raised in an affluent situation, they need to be challenged. And part of that challenge is that somebody has to be able to say no to them. And so there is a, I would say a trend in in the parenting world, again, that the parenting synonymous with mothering world. And that is that you don't want to ever say no to a child, just distract them redirect them endlessly, like try to make because because what's in them and all their impulses are always positive. Of course, we see that with young children, right? Like, and so and so that's, that's the intuition that's really behind this idea. Now, you don't want to be, you know, constantly terrorizing your children, right? There are certainly ways to way over do this. And some people have been raised by fathers or mothers who have done that. But it's, it's really important that there be somebody in a child's life, who has that brick wall, who says, Here are the standards, here are the consequences, and that they feel like themselves slamming up against that wall. And I've noticed something too. I think that when a child can't find the brick wall, they get anxious, and they get hyperactive, I think I think a lot of a lot of that anxiety and hyperactivity that you see in young children, is they're trying to find their bearings. And nobody is providing any kind of real boundaries to them that they can't find a way to overthrow. And so oftentimes, when you're fighting with your three or four or five year old, who's throwing fits and trying to figure out can I overthrow this family can overthrow this man, and the man's like, No, you can't, like this is my family, and you're going to, you're going to obey these rules. And this is, these are the consequences if you don't, and we're not going to capitulate to your emotional storms or whatever, we're going to be kind, we're going to be compassionate, we're gonna be understanding, but we're not going to give in that I think that actually creates a lot of peace for children. And, and so we're, I think that that's, that's how it might look in the young stages in the later stages. You know, what one of the things that I've in, I've talked about how I, you know, challenge being oftentimes a high support low demand, parent and so like, one of the things that I've had to tell my kids is, I need you guys when you pick something like, you know, a hobby, like a musical instrument, a something that you that's good, I know is going to be hard, you're going to hit that dip, you're gonna you're gonna have all the enjoyment. Yay, piano sounds awesome. And then, you know, three months later, you're like, I don't really feel like practicing anymore. Okay. I think I think part of good fathering and mothers certainly can do this as well. But I think that oftentimes, if if a mother is really dialing into the empathy, oftentimes the father needs to step into this role. I think it's really well designed for, for the male to to play this role, and that is to say, look, I will help you learn this thing. But you got to, you have to commit for like two years. And this is what this looks like. And you can explore maybe a few incidents before you commit. But at some point, when you choose to commit, I'm gonna put resources into this, I'm going to help you. And one of things I'm going to do is I'm going to make sure that you don't switch, I'm going, I want you to experience what it's like to become proficient in something. And so oftentimes, our kids don't know what it's like to be proficient. And so we want to give them that that advantage, and I think that the father who's able to hold their child to those commitments that they've made, and even sometimes as they're getting older, I love it, when when kids are getting into their middle school teenage years actually writing these these things out as contracts, you know, I'm gonna put $500 into this, I, you're committing to this, here are the bullet points. And then three months later, when they're hitting the dip, and they're out of energy, and they're like, I kind of done with this, I want to move on, I know that shiny object syndrome, you pull it out and say, Okay, come here, let's look at what we did. Remember what I put in? The answer is no, you can't move on, you are becoming proficient in this, you agree to this. And I want you to experience what it's like to be a disciplined person, and to to actually achieve mastery in something that always takes discipline, and to be the kind of father to give that incredible gift to your children of learning what it's like to get to the place in their own life where they, they they're struggling, and they want to quit, and then they have to find within themselves, whatever that place is to keep moving to keep going. That is that brick wall I'm talking about. And of course, I want to emphasize like there are unkind ways to do this. And there are encouraging ways to do this. But what I'm trying to signal in the tweet is fathers need to understand that there are areas and you can you can pick the areas like you don't there's not every area, pick the areas, you know in your life where you're going to be the brick wall. And that that is a blessing to your children.
Curt Storring 57:03
Yes, I 100% agree. And very anecdotally, this is the very first thing that we did to get our family back on track when I was just, I was off the handle. And that obviously led the kids to being certain ways, which is to say they didn't react well, because I wasn't reacting well. But the first thing I did that saw results was oh, hey, I'm not going to let you do that. And then to be like nonchalant and just set the boundary, and the anxiety and the anger and the Tantrums continued for a couple of weeks. And then they're like, Oh, you're serious? Wow. Imagine that. And they charge. Yeah, exactly. In the fear. Can you imagine being a tiny little kid with no resources in terms of like mental faculties, faculty compared to an adult? You're almost like, you can't do anything but you think you can't you think you're alone? And if you are in that leadership position, how terrifying would you be? How nearside would you be as a small child being in charge, and your dad's not even there for you? Right? And I know that and because guys, if you're listening to all these kinds of things that Jeremy saying, you were trying to apply them to your children, as a father, but how would you have felt if your dad did these things to you? I always think about that. I always go man, as a child, as a son myself, how would I have reacted to this? In the time I can see that wouldn't have been happy briefly. But man, I would love to have had a high demand father, I would love to have had these boundaries around which I could then figure out who I was in, in goodness and light in in a field that was prepared before me so that I didn't have to Trump through like bugs, to get to what I now have. So anyway, think about that, from your perspective as a as a son, and then a father how you can do this. So I know we're a pastime. Now, I really appreciate this. Jeremy, this has been one of the most fun that I've had, because I'm like you said the thing Tell me about it. And then I can, you know, have have some pre made questions as it were. But it's it's so good. Because, man, I look, sometimes I'm like, you must have like, hundreds of 1000s of followers, because every story that has like a tweet, and I'm like, How do I save this? I can't save a story on Instagram, what's going on? I need to be able to save this. Because it's such such wisdom. So I really appreciate you sharing that with me and with us. Because there's a dearth of this, as I'm sure you understand, with people being able to share that wisdom. So thank you. Where should people find you if they want more? Any links you want to drop in? We'll put those in the show notes as well.
Jeremy Pryor 59:13
Oh, cool. Yeah, you can you can follow me on Twitter, Instagram, those are places Yeah, like Kurt said that I like to hang out LinkedIn. I post some things over there too. And yeah, family teams.com. You can you can see kind of what we have going on in terms of the different programs, online courses, coaching, opportunities that we do. We try to do all these family teams weekend's at different parts of the country. So you're following family teams on Instagram, or on our email list you'll and I try to publish an email about once a week trying to get back into that and then I also take that email and do a podcast around it with some members of our community. So there's a family teams podcast as well. I have a sub stack that I personally just the the edge of my thinking and I like to, I like to read those essays on my personal podcast to interact with folks about sharpening, whatever kind of these thoughts are. So those are some of the places I hang out.
Curt Storring 1:00:12
Brilliant. All right, Dad. Thank you for listening. Jeremy, thank you for being here. And we'll catch you guys in the next one. Thank you for listening to the data worth 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 drop 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.
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