#106. Choosing Cause Over Comfort to Become a Forged Father – Travis Stoetzel

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My guest today is Travis Stoetzel, founder of The Forged Father.

We talk about choosing cause over comfort and making sure you are FULLY IN on your MVP (listen to the episode to find out what that means).

This is a great conversation with a man who’s living what he preaches. Pumped to have Travis on today!

About Travis Stoetzel

Travis Stoetzel is a Husband, Father, and Coach who specializes in helping high-achieving Ex-Athlete DADS destroy the “dad bod” and get back their edge in life so they can be the best leader and role model possible for their family. 

Travis has now been a coach for over 13 years and has helped 1000’s of men transform their lives through his online, remote-based coaching program, The Forged FATHER.

Travis has shown that it is possible to stay in top shape while also balancing out the craziness of being a dad, husband, and entrepreneur. He was the 7th fittest man in the World in the 2018 Crossfit Games as a Master’s 35-39 year old athlete and still competes as an athlete in Crossfit today amongst doing other challenging events within the fitness world.

If you’re you a success driven dad who’s wanting to LIVE and LEAD a LEGACY in LIFE, you can connect with Travis at theforgedfather.com

Find Travis Stoetzel At:
IG: @theforgedfather

Resources mentioned:
Death To Dad Bod with Travis Stoetzel

Curt Storring 0:00

Welcome to the Dad Work Podcast. My name is Curt Storring, your host and the founder of data work. I'm joined today by Travis Stoetzel And today's episode is called The Forged Father Chooses Cars Over Comfort. That's heavy guys. That's a heavy hitting title. And I heard this from Travis on an Instagram post, I think it was choose cars over comfort, man that hits deep, right? And so we go into that, what does that mean? How do you do that? How do you set yourself up with habits and frameworks that set you up for success as a man, a husband and a father? I mean, guys, Travis is hardcore, he's jacked, he's present. He's showing up. He's a leader of men. I'm gonna read you his bio here. Travis Edsel is a husband, father and coach who specializes in helping high achieving ex athlete dads destroy the dad bod and get back their edge in life so they can be the best leader and role model possible for their family. Travis has now been a coach for over 13 years and has helped 1000s of men transform their lives through his online remote based coaching program, the Forge father, Travis has shown that it is possible to stay in top shape while also balancing out the craziness of being a dad, husband and entrepreneur. He was the seventh fittest man in the world in the 2018 crossfit games as a Master's 35 to 39 year old athlete and still competes as an athlete in CrossFit today, amongst doing other challenging events within the fitness world. If you are a success driven dad who's wanting to live and lead a legacy in life, you can connect with Travis at theforgedfather.com. And you can find him on Instagram, The Forged Father, this was excellent guys. I really appreciate having Travis on. We've got more coming at you shortly. And next week and the week thereafter. And as long as we can keep going. And guys, I'm hoping to have my wife on the podcast. I hope that's exciting to you because I got a lot of questions on Instagram when I said she was potentially open to the idea. And really looking forward to diving into that over the next couple of weeks here or maybe a little more than that, but we'll get her on soon. Anyway, if you guys have been enjoying this, please make sure to hop over to Apple or Spotify wherever you're listening this just happen your screen takes five seconds leave us a rating or review rating on Spotify rating and review on Apple helps tremendously get this in the ears of more dads, we've got literally 1000s of people listening per episode now, which is amazing. And man, this just keeps doing more and more good in the world, not because of me, but because of the men on the podcast and you guys taking action. Because it's one thing to listen to this over and over and over and over again like yeah, this fires me up. And then it just fall back into the ways you were doing before. It's another thing to listen to the podcast and take actionable steps. And so guys, if you want help taking actual steps, I highly recommend downloading my habit stack for elite dads, you can get that at Dad.Work/Habits. And that is just a list of the things I do collected over many years now trial and error that have kept me in peak shape. peak energy levels peak making sure I don't yellow people levels and just connectivity with my family making me feel great every day as a husband as a father as an entrepreneur as as man. So if you want that head over to the Dad.Work/Habits anyway, that's enough housekeeping. Let's dive into this episode with Travis Stoetzel. Here we go.

Okay, guys, we're here for another episode of the data. We're Podcast. I'm here with Travis Stoetzel. And man, you are one of the most fit 35 to 39 year old dads and men in the entire country if I'm getting that correct. Is that true?

Travis Stoetzel 3:15

That is true. Well, back in 2018, at least seven fittest 35 to 39 year old in the world, according to the CrossFit Games.

Curt Storring 3:27

Nice. Just finished a massive Spartan Race to

Travis Stoetzel 3:31

yes just got back from Vermont. Killington, Vermont, finished the ultra race out there. And yeah, just 14 hours and 13 minutes is all it took me to do. very narrowly made it by the cap. So we started at 6:30am. And they closed the course at night well, officially had had until 9pm To finish the full course. And I snuck in under that So sweet.

Curt Storring 4:05

That's amazing. And then if you guys if you don't follow Travis already, just check him out. The forefather on Instagram I think it is. And, man, you're like, This is not just me going, Hey, guys, let's get fired up about getting fit. Let's get fired up about being disciplined. Like I see that stuff. And I'm just like, Oh, dude, I gotta get to the gym like immediately because you're in shape, man. And you are at it constantly by the looks of it. And I think that's what I want to dive into a lot today is the discipline that that takes, and actually the benefits of what living that life are like, because I know that a lot of guys are walking around out there. And this is just simple observation of human beings in this day and age is they don't look like you. And I think that's a tragedy and more men should look like you to be quite honest. But it's a process and it takes a lot of hard work. But before we get into that, I would love to talk about just your journey as a father, how many kids do you have, how long you've been married and What does that look like these days? And maybe just compare that to how it looked at the very beginning?

Travis Stoetzel 5:04

Absolutely. So coming up on our 10 year anniversary. So my wife and I were actually on a walk this morning discussing what we wanted to do on our 10 year because funny story with that. Don't want to get too far off tangent. But so I flew out to Vermont over this past weekend, and I was in my southwest account, you know, checking in, and then I noticed, there was a trip booked for Cancun, Mexico, and I'm like, where the hell that come from? And then it kind of connected. I was like, Ah, okay, got it. So, we're going to back to Mexico, where we got married. Well, where we had our honeymoon. So we'll be heading back there in December. Nice. So Ben, coming up on the, on the 10 years there, and we have four daughters. So I am a girl dad to the fullest. And couldn't ask for anything else than that, man. It's been amazing. Right? So but yeah, what? What was the rest of your question? You wanted to find out?

Curt Storring 6:08

Just curious how your progression has been from a dad because guys, no, listen to this, like mine was terrible. I was just so bad. And that's why I'm doing this work first place. But like was easy for you. Were you always into fitness? Like what was the progression between being this like, fit Dad, if you will, versus now like, You're fit man. Now you're this fit down? Like what was that like? And how is it? How have you progressed, how have you leveled up as a dad over the last however many years

Travis Stoetzel 6:33

truth be told the forest father. So the coaching program that I run and operate now was created because I was struggling as a dad. I've never struggled with my fitness, my fitness and health has always just been a part of who I am. That was kind of instilled in me at a very early age with my dad. He had me doing push ups pull ups we had, we had a clothes hanger behind our house. And I used to just go out there for fun and just do pull ups. Because he got me into that I wrestled and you know, starting in fourth grade wrestle and play football, this stuff, but you know, getting me into wrestling. It was basically do you do you outwork the competition. If you do, you'll show up and you'll dominate. Right? So I took that to heart and I started doing push ups before bed and you know, pull ups during my downtime or whatever. Right? So I just had that athlete identity within me from an early age. And it's it's stuck with me. So I've, I've never struggled with my health and fitness because I just do it, I do it because it's a part of who I am. Right? Is so starting my own gym. You know, after college, I played baseball, and football, played a little bit of professional football, tried out for numerous NFL teams, you know, being a five 765 pound, you know, white dude, my chances are very slim to none, you know, making it to that next level I tried, put my heart and soul into it. And I think what I got out of that in return was just the knowledge and the wisdom that I was able to develop trying to get myself to the next level. So I just developed this, this, you know, just passion for learning more and more and more to improve performance. And so that naturally just got me into the strength and conditioning side of things. And I went on the other side of the coin with that became a coach started working with athletes started my my gym, which is the forged athlete. And actually just recently kind of gave that up. Because I'm full time online with with the forefather at this point. Right. So, but the the turning point with that was after we had our first daughter of Angeline. I remember, it was like eight months in. And here I am my focus at that point was like, Okay, I gotta grind, I gotta hustle. And I just got to build this, this wealth and this lifestyle that I feel my wife and my daughter want and need. And so I was at my gym, from 5:30am Pretty much every single day, I'd work on Saturdays, and I'd come home, you know, later at night. And I was not present. I was not present at all. And I would tell myself lies that, you know, the reason I'm doing this is for my wife and my daughter. I'm busting my ass for them. And so that almost gave me kind of an excuse to go to the gym workout extra, you know, always on my phone, you know, texting clients, you know, writing workouts and I was always on top of that for that because in my mind I'm like I'm hustling and grinding. It's okay. I'm doing what I need to do. I'm being a Uh, you know, a provider for my, for my family, right? So here we are eight months in, and I'm thinking I'm being the best dad, I'm being the best husband I can be. And I remember one night, we're lying in bed, and my wife starts like sobbing, like, I can tell, she's like, upset, she's crying. And I'm like, What the hell? So I roll over. And I'm thinking, like, what did I do, like,

long story short, we had a conversation that night, and, and for the first time, through our marriage up to that point, I was afraid that I was going to end up alone, and I was gonna lose this family that was working so hard to, you know, provide for. And the thing that really stung me in the heart, was when she said, I feel like we're second best, or second best to your business, or second best to your fitness. And she was absolutely correct at that point, right. And so, I was kind of blinding myself with just being caught up in the work. And being that provider, which a lot of the dads that I work with, when they come to me, that's the position that they're in, you know, they're providing for their family, they're dominating it from, you know, a business side of things, but, you know, their marriage, their, their presence as a father, and then their health even, are the things that are slipping off to the side, right. But either way, that night, the very, very next day, I was on a mission, I said, I need to get my shit together, how do I tie in the roles of being a dad, the roles of being a present husband, the roles of being a badass professional, that has his shit together that's productive and efficient with his time. But also, you know, a badass athlete, too, right? Because those are the four things that I wanted. And, you know, becoming a more present, more focused into and father and husband were the things and so I kind of went to the drawing board, I read books, I hired mentors to figure this shit out. And really what I developed from that was the core curriculum that we have inside of the Forge father, and one of the main things with that is what we call the Forge five, right. And it's kind of like our, our daily, non negotiables, if you will, things that get done no matter what. And what we've come to find over the years is, when you get those things done, you start to elevate, and you start to improve, in all four of those key roles, obviously, you're gonna get in better shape, you're gonna look better, you're gonna feel better. And what we like to say is, you're going to get that edge back in life, right? So you can show up as a more present, more energized father, you can show up better connected with your wife, because she, she wants that new man that you're becoming again, right. And then, you know, from a professional side of things, it's really understanding and learning how to disconnect when you need need to disconnect. Now, that was probably one of my biggest problems, was being able to disconnect from work time, family time, right? So but that's really how that kind of originated. And that's when I shifted over. Because a lot of my clients at that time were dads anyways. And it's just one of those situations where you, you get to that point, and you just you own up to it. You know, that's one of the first things that we do within the program is you own up to the ugly truth. And you gotta face that man in the mirror, you got to quit bullshitting yourself. You gotta quit fucking lying to yourself, and you know, sweeping things under the rug, oh, things will get better, things will get better. Well, they're only gonna get better after you, you know, own up to that shit, right. And so that's what it takes, man. And that's kind of where it originated from.

Curt Storring 14:01

Nice, man. That's awesome. That's, it's so good. There's like that ownership component to it. Because that, like, everyone's out there looking for someone to save them, I found at least and when you can finally take on everything. Like, it might not be your fault that you don't know how to do some of these things. But it's certainly certainly your responsibility. You know, and if the resources are out there, if the courses are out there, if everything's out there, coaches are out there. You don't just take action and do the thing to become a like a great man, for your wife, and for your kids. Like, what are you doing? And so I'm kind of curious about, like, what some of these things were that you went through in terms of like books and mentors and stuff? Because I had a similar sort of thing where it was like, you know, there were a few for me. It was like, Okay, this is not very good. It doesn't feel like you or even like, doesn't mean like you love us. It's like, Oh, damn, like that. That hurt. And then like, Yeah, I kind of got better, but it wasn't that good. And then it was like we were living overseas at the time. My wife is like, I'm taking the kid and go back home if you don't sort your shit out. It's like, okay, now this is no negotiable, I have to figure this out. But what were the things like what kind of books what kind of mentors what was it, they were able to tie that all together because that, for me is also been the biggest thing is like, the massive vision of my life is not just business success anymore, because it was for a long time. It's not just, you know, looking cool, or whatever people think it's like I am now the man, the only man in the world who can burden who can shoulder the burden of my wife, my kids, my family. And that's now number one, but it drives everything else, better a business because of it more fit, because of it, all these things. Were there anything like any specific points along that journey that you're like, Man, this was just a game changer.

Travis Stoetzel 15:37

For me, there's three books that really stand out that really helped me develop what we use instead of the forefather. And one of the first ones is just Extreme Ownership. I mean, a lot of people know about that book, they they know the main message of it, and it says it all right there in the in the title, it says like own your shit, right? Like Extreme Ownership, right. And so that was a, that was a, obviously a game changer for me. The next one atomic habits, you know, because that was one of the key things that I really need to needed to get in place for myself at that point was just having certain habits, but just really being more efficient with my time, you know, more disciplined with my time and setting in, you know, specific habits to help drive that forward. And then number three was Love Languages, The Five Love Languages do, those

Curt Storring 16:27

are awesome.

Travis Stoetzel 16:28

Little did I know, you know, leading up to that point. So And here's where a lot of dads go wrong. Especially the entrepreneur, business owner types. grind, grind, grind, hustle, hustle, hustle, provide, provide provide, it's kind of like a gift type mindset. It's like, okay, if your wife is a, you know, a high end type person and takes a lot to pleaser in that sense, yeah, you're probably going to be good at doing a good job. But my, my wife could give two shits about that stuff, which I'm thankful for. She doesn't want the, you know, the flashy rings, and, you know, the purses and handbags and car, whatever, she can get value with whatever, right? She just wants quality, time, quality, focused time. And words of affirmation, which I've never been good with, because I just wasn't raised in a household like that. We weren't raised in a household where it's like physical touch, like, Oh, I love you. You know, it wasn't like that. So I'm not used to that. And that's not one of my love languages. But it is for her. So I had to kind of learn how to really adapt that. And now it's just kind of second nature. Right? Yeah. And those are better communication, better communication, for

Curt Storring 17:45

sure. Yeah. And that's, that's like, for me, I'm trying, I'm trying to like, figure out my place and all this because I know what worked for me. And I know what's working for my clients. And I'm just like, Man, how do I how do I get this down into a message that can get across, and I was like, Oh, dude, I wrote this down like five years ago is like my mission, I want to be harder to kill and easier to love. And a lot of guys will go so hard on one or the other. And it takes I think both of those things, like a lot of guys, if they're harder to kill, or like making more money, same sort of vibe. You're like the warrior vibe, you're crushing it. And then you go home and your wife wonders if you've been a lover, and your kids are like, I think maybe my dad loves me. But dude, I work with so many clients now who they're like, Yeah, I'm pretty sure my dad loved me, but he never told me so. And that fucks people up like that is that is something that is hard to recover from as a grown man and the other side, you get a bunch of guys who are like, Oh, dude, let's just like don't worry about how you look, you just got to feel good about it. And like, Okay, you might have the emotional capacity. But if push comes to shove, you're not going to be the one defending your family. And you don't have those habits in that discipline that make you proud of yourself. That gets self respect. So I think I love here, man that you're like, exactly in the middle of that balance, which is taking Extreme Ownership and being able to love because those are like, yeah, not everyone has that bread. And I think that is absolutely vital for dads, especially, who want to actually have success in life. And I think this probably takes us into cars over comfort. And this is one of those things I saw on Instagram. I had to DM you. I was like, Dude, that is so good. Because Cause over comfort will win every single time and so many of us go like I don't feel like this today. Like fuck your feelings, bro. I don't know if that's another Jocko thing or what? But that's just like, too bad. You have too many responsibilities your family looks at looks up to you too much and relies on you for you not to feel like showing up as a good dad and a good husband today. So do you want to like you want to just riff on cause over comfort because man, I love the way you put that?

Travis Stoetzel 19:39

Absolutely. And I think the place that we need to start with that is obviously talking about motivation. Like it's just at this point. It's just yeah, it just irritates the fuck out of me. But it's just a lot of guys just don't know what they don't know. They think what's gotten them to a certain point has been motivation. Right? And you You know, as well as ideal motivation is going to come and go. Like, you can certainly ride the wave, January 1, fucking right? Everybody's motivated, right? Everybody's going to do do the things that they need to do until that motivation is gone. Right? And then that's really where the interested folk get separated. You know, the committed folk and the interested folk get separated, right. And so just having dealt with this so much in the past with, you know, men that need help men that are seeking help, and they're, they're looking for the wrong thing, they're looking for motivated, oh, if I just had the motivation, it's like, Well, dude, that moat, I'm not motivated every single day, right? Neither are you. Nobody is right. And so you can bring in the word discipline, right? Like, oh, discipline over motivation, it is true. Like, if there's certain set of outcomes and results that you want to achieve, you got to do the work. It's that simple. And it doesn't fucking matter how you feel, you can be motivated that day and do the work great. You can do the work, when you don't feel motivated, you still got to do it one way or another, right. And so when a man comes in, and we really start to deep dive into, you know, changing how he operates from, you know, a mental side of things, because that's really what's going to create the change in individual. It's not the tactics and strategies it is, but it isn't right. And so we need to change the operating system. And one of the things that we start with is what we call the MVP, right? Your mission, vision purpose, being able to tap into that and know what it is that you want, which is your vision, connecting that to a purpose. Why do you want this this vision that you talk so highly about? Like, why is it important to you, it should be something that really triggers something inside of you, like me, just thinking about my purpose right now, like, it raises the hairs on the back of my head, right, like on the back of my neck. But when you can truly tap into that now you can start to elevate your state, when you don't have that motivation. And you can actually create the motivation that you need. But even if not that, you tap into that vision. And that purpose, now the mission becomes a little bit easier to fulfill, because the mission is the fucking work. The mission is what you got to do on a day to day basis, you show up and you conquer the day, right. And so where this whole concept of cause over comfort comes into play. It's like being in uncertain situations, and I like to refer to these as moments of opportunity. And I'll just use a real easy and simple one here, right? Your alarm goes off at 5am your vision for yourself is to lose this 25 pounds that you've been carrying around, you got this DadBod your sex drive sucks, your energy sucks, and yada, yada, yada, right? That alarms going off. And so you have a decision to make, are you going to choose comfort, which for most individuals out there, most common men are going to roll with the comfort in that particular moment. And then then they're going to come up with some sort of excuse to justify that right? Like, oh, I worked out pretty hard yesterday. I'll put it off for today, and I'll get to it tomorrow. Okay, you just chose comfort, right? You can choose cause causes. The purpose, right? Why the fuck do you need to get up at 5am right now and do the work that you don't want to do? Well, it's for this higher cause, right? And so if you can start connecting that to different moments of opportunity, you know, waking up early in the morning and being disciplined and being a man of your word and following through and upholding that integrity. It makes a difference when you really tap into it or just tons of other situations. It's like, oh, you I had a conversation with a dad yesterday. And one of the things that's been holding him back is I just can't seem to stay out of the pantry. I can eat healthy all day and be be where I need to be with my macros and then I just fuck up at the end of the day and I find myself in the pantry. You know, eating the kids snacks, or you know, getting an ice bowl of ice cream and I know it's I know it's wrong. I know, I know I'm in the wrong cause every comfort thing is is his cause Is it big enough

to overrule comfort? You'd much rather have comfort in the moment and continue to continue to live this this same lifestyle. Right was so that's kind of where it starts. So you gotta you gotta be in line and connected with that vision for you. You got to understand why you want it. You got it. You got to be be perfectly clear with that. Because when it triggers something emotionally in you, and you remember why the hell you're doing these things, then it becomes a simple game. And you just ask yourself, okay, cause cause or comfort, cause or comfort, what's going to get you there quicker?

Curt Storring 25:16

So good, man. And what would you tell this guy? Like, I often go to consequences, because I think that, you know, the fear of future regret for a lot of guys. And it's not even like future regret, because a lot of the guys come to me, like, you know, they're at the brink. Right? The consequences are very real. If your cause isn't big enough, you're gonna get a divorce your kids, either. And I seen this flippin tragic man OD, or do some stupid like that, or they just move out and literally never call you again, in this business you're creating that you think is so cool to provide for your family? Doesn't matter. Because on your deathbed, nobody's gonna be there. Like, is that not a motivating factor in terms of building a cause? So I don't know, man, is there anything else that you tell guys when they're like, Oh, I've just can't seem to do it can't stay to the pantry. What do you tell these guys?

Travis Stoetzel 26:07

Well, it's really just going back to the start. Okay, let's wipe all this shit away. And let me ask you this question again. What is it that you want? You don't want to be fat anymore. You don't want to be rundown anymore. You don't want to look in the mirror and be fucking embarrassed anymore. That's what you're telling me right now? Is that what you really want? Is that a 10? out of 10? No fucking doubt about it? Or is it just the kind of sorta I wish, I hope someday type thing. And if it's anything less than a 10 out of 10, then that's on them to shift that. And a lot of times, the reason it wouldn't be a 10 out of 10 is because they have that self doubt, they have that fear that's living inside of them based off of past history repeating itself. And so when they get to certain points, it's like, Oh, I've tried that. I've tried this, I've tried, you know, all these things that haven't worked. And I've just continued to spin my wheels. And so what the hell. But the reason why that keeps happening is because they're looking at the wrong things. They're, they're seeking out the wrong shit. It's all external, when it needs to be internal first. And so this individual yesterday, I got him to shift his perspective a little bit, because I was like, You came onto this call right now, looking for the diet that we use looking for the workouts that we use, guess what? What works, fucking works, calories, macros, you know, it's science. There's 1000 different ways that you can tweak and change it to you to suit your lifestyle. So it's something sustainable, but at the end of the day, it's the same shit. In order to make it work, you need to work. And the reason that stuff hasn't worked in the past is because something's fucking broken. And not to say that an individual is broken, because they're not. They're just not, they're not focusing in on the right shit. They're overlooking those things, or they're seeking seeking out the wrong stuff, motivation. external, external sources, I need somebody to hold me accountable. We all do at certain points, right? Like it'll help elevate, elevate us to a whole new level, might help us elevate our standards a little bit, push a little bit harder, compete a little bit more, right. But at the end of the day, like nobody, nobody's coming to save you. Yeah, nobody can come save you. Like, ultimately, the man that you see, staring back at you in the mirror is the man that's going to have to do the fucking work one way or another. So find out what that cause is for you tap into that MVP. And let that help you make your decisions. And so it pushes you forward, man,

Curt Storring 29:01

that's awesome. What are what are some of these, like basic disciplines that I don't want to say all guys, but I'm gonna say all guys that all guys should start to tap into. And obviously, they gotta go through the process that you just lined up, like, what is your MVP, because you got to make sure that the cause is there. But once the cause is there, and you're like, Dude, I just don't know what to do. Are there some very basic, like fundamental foundational things that typically work to start guys on that path towards? Well, not dad bods, which I'd love to talk a little bit more about eventually, but like, what are some of these non negotiables that you use in your life, either fitness wise, but also family wise? Because I think that's, those are awesome to talk about. So what's what's non negotiable for you and your guys.

Travis Stoetzel 29:41

So I'll just I'll hit on the five non negotiables that we have in the program so starts with fitness. So move your body with intent every single day, whether that's a full fledged workout, we have a hierarchy system, right? So it's like okay, if you have a program that's been custom built for you, which that's what we do for all our guys like Come in, we'd go through an assessment, we go through an actual, like deep dive kind of onboarding session, and we build this stuff out for them, because we don't want any fucking excuses, right? If I give you this templated plan, and it's gonna require 60 minutes of your time and a full fledged gym, but you have nothing but your bodyweight, and 30 minutes a day to put towards that, then you can already use excuses to get out of that shit, right. So but either way, fitness, moving the body with intent, whether that's full fledged workout, modify the workout, we have something that's kind of like a bare bones, no excuses. type setup, which I call it the daily 250. It's like you can take 10 minutes of time, a day to get in the day. 250. That's like, you know, the last resort, right? That's going to help us move the needle forward. If that's what we got to do, but we get something in, right. So fitness fuel, which is your nutrition, and there's a hierarchy to that. The next one is focus, which is becoming a very highly skilled planner and prepare, right so planning and preparation is key, especially as a busy dad, right? Busy dad, busy husband, busy professional. I can't even tell you how many times we come across that it's like I just don't have the time. I'm just I'm busy. I got some extremely busy individuals that I work with currently right now. And they they get shit done. But it's because they plan properly and they're prepared. Right. Next one is frame, we take time for ourselves every single day to elevate our state. You know, so this is perfect for the guys out there that are you know, they don't do anything when they're unmotivated? Well, the first thing that we do is we focus in on our frame, and we have a routine in the morning. Like I feel morning routines are everything, especially to set you up in the right state of mind to attack the day. On a previous point it is and I'm sure you have them too. You wake up and you're just like blah,

Curt Storring 32:09

warning, bro this morning. Oh, like, oh, I had to put a pillow over the internal Sissy and just be like, goodnight, sweet prince, but like, Dude, I did not want to get there. Yeah, 100%

Travis Stoetzel 32:20

man. So we go through a little bit of a specific routine to elevate the state get in a positive state of mind. And, you know, start stacking wins for the day. And then the fifth element is family. And when it comes to family, it's about being fully present. And in the moment, not thinking about anything else. Not having your phone. And it requires discipline. And this this is the one of one of the things I had to work on the most is learning how to shut that shit off. You know, being your own boss, running your own business. Oftentimes time is seen as money, right? So it's like, oh, no, we're not really doing anything. It's family time. But maybe I'll you know, write an email or something like that, or do something, do something, you know, that's, that's money producing right? Now it's you got you, you have specific boundaries that you can't cross. Right? So you got to be disciplined with that stuff. And I like to say just you got to be a man of your word, you know, draw a line in the sand. Understand what your schedule is in. Don't Don't cross those boundaries, because you start to break your own word. Like I said, Five o'clock, no, no more phone, no more this, no more of that. And then you break that rule. And then you break it again, then you break it again, then sooner or later, it's not even a rule anymore. Right? And that could just be for family time, we start to look at the other areas that I talked about, like some days you're taking off, you're not going through the morning routine, you're not elevating your state. You know, you're not journaling, you're not doing gratitude, you're not doing these other things, and you skip that one day. And then it turns into another day and then another day, and then you kind of sort of do it here and there. It's like no, that's not gonna work. And it's not a game of perfection. I think that's another area that a lot of guys get fucked up with. They're like, you know, 75 hard, nothing against 80 presolar. Like, dudes freaking awesome. mazing. But to strive for perfection all the time. It's only a matter of time until you burn the fuck out. Right? And so going all in Yes, you need to be a 10 out of 10. But that's that, that that doesn't mean that you're shooting for perfection. Because you're gonna fuck up and so the true test is when you fuck up. What do you do next? Yes, You get back on track. And so our thought process with it is progress over perfection. Strive for progress. Okay, you had a bad weekend. So what? What are you going to do to get back on track? What are you going to do to create progress forward? Because a lot of a perfectionist out there, and there's a lot of guys, again, these conversations pop up before an individual, you know, takes the next step with us is like, what do you feel as you know, stopped you in the past, it's like, I'll be all in. I'll be on my diet. And I'm 27 days in and I've been perfect, and a birthday party comes up, and I fuck up over the weekend. And I feel bad about it. And so I just say, Screw it. And the next three weeks are completely off. So it's either on or off. We got to find a happy medium. Not so much in the middle. But I mean, you got to be more on the odd side, obviously. But again, it's not it's not a game of propriety of perfection. Yeah, so progress with those with those non negotiables. Right.

Curt Storring 36:06

That's awesome, man. I love those. And that's a cover so much, right? Like if you guys if you just dial those things in? And obviously it's a lot. I mean, I think it's a lot easier to have coach or program something like that to have because then it takes away the decision. I find like for me decision fatigue, I just remove all decisions. Like everything's laid out the night before. I've already got the plan. Everything's on the phone, everything's time block, like, there's no decisions going on. So if you join a program, like Travis's, or like any other ones out there, man, like highly, highly recommended, because that's where I've seen the most growth most growth personally. But I'm actually curious about that last piece, or no, that is the last bit the second last piece. Maybe his last piece anyway, but like checking out and going on the phone, you said that was a little bit of a struggle for you. What was it that got you there? Or what is getting you there right now? Because man, I ended think pretty much every other business owning father that I know, man, that's a struggle. So what have you done to see some success.

Travis Stoetzel 37:04

It's so for me, I just leave my phone in my office, I put it in my drawer. So this is a place of work. So when I'm in the office, my girls know when I'm in here, and they might barge in here in a bit because my wife's getting them from school. And they typically usually come into the office. But usually when I'm in here, office doors closed, they know daddy's working, right? And so out there, that's like, the play zone, right? Like, that's the family area TVs out there, you know, toys, all that stuff. So they know not to bring their stuff in here. I can't bring my stuff out there into their realm, right? So work has to stay in here. And that means phone stays in here. So I just usually put it in the drawer because here's the thing is like, it requires my effort to open the drawer and reach in and grab the phone and take it out. And so you start to connect it with the stuff that we've talked about, right? Cause over comfort, it's just a different moment of opportunity. Here I am, I'm feeling drawn to my phone. What the fuck am I going to do on my phone? What am I checking for? Like, it's not even work time right now. I'm gonna get that done tomorrow. Right? And so it's really just being disciplined and maintain that, that that were that, that you committed to yourself? Right? So there's days where it's tough. And my wife and I have spoken about this, you know, like, we hold each other accountable. Because in the past, you know, you'll get it out, you'll be on the phone, you're doing something real quick, is like, okay, sorry. And then it starts to get more frequent and more frequent. And then there's just no more boundaries anymore. It's like phones always out, right? So having an open communication with that and creating more accountability. And that's really one of the things that pushed me was I told my wife, I was like, Hey, I give you free rein, to, you know, call me out on my shit. Because I'm not going to have my phone out in this area. Like, if you see me in the kitchen on the phone when the kids are here, and it's supposed to be like, family time, like Coleman is out, please put me in my place. So

Curt Storring 39:19

that's awesome. Yeah, that's, that's a great accountability system too. And the same thing I've gone through and I've gone through that whole cycle, which you just explained, which is I keep my phone in the office. And then one day took it out. And it was like, okay, you know, it's the next day sort of thing and then goes on and on. And suddenly it's like back to normal. And guys, check your bloody screentime This is one of the things that I like working with my guys and like send me send me your hourly screentime per day at the end of the day. Let's just take a quick look. And nobody wants to do it because they know. But when you can get that down, like cut your screentime in half by just leaving it in your office. Everything changes. When I started doing that. I would be sitting on the couch after work. It'd be like what do I do now? Yeah, I guess I'll just play with the kids more, I guess I'll do the dishes, I guess I'll like, talk to my wife. And it's like, Dude, it literally clears up hours, massive percentage of your day, it's great to just log that. Lock that back in your office or wherever you're gonna put it. Yeah, what about your saying before? Like, most of most, if not all of us, thrive in community. And I imagine that's part of your program as community. Can you talk a little bit about the importance of that, and what you've seen in that, and just like the, the inspiration that other guys can give each other when they're crushing it?

Travis Stoetzel 40:31

Oh, yeah, absolutely. So for me growing up as an athlete, like, that's one of the things that really pushed me, right. I mean, you're, you're, you're your own individual, obviously, but surround yourself around other individuals that are, you know, operating in a several similar level as you or higher. And it's just gonna, it's, it's going to help push you forward. And so with our community, that's probably the biggest thing with with the forefathers, the Brotherhood. And, you know, a lot of these guys or ex athletes, they're competitive. They know what hard work will get them in return. And so just surrounding yourself with through that, I mean, you got friendly competition, you got camaraderie side of things, but then you also got the connection. And I think that's important, because opening up about certain things, right, like, just the other night, one of our guys has been kind of going through a little bit of a struggle, his wife is just really stressed out, they just had another kid. So they got three, and she's kind of with the kids at all times. And his job is very demanding. And so she's been starting to get on his case a little bit when he's kind of taking the time for himself. And so if you don't have a community to kind of air that stuff out, what does that turn into, right? That turns into you bringing that out on your kids, or you bringing that out on your wife, and arguing. Instead, he brought it to the Brotherhood. Other guys had things to say about it, different perspectives. And so instead of, you know, you trying to solve the problem yourself, now, you're creating a little bit of a mastermind, right, and so you're creating new ideas that wouldn't have been created before. Unless these other minds were coming into play, right. So that's something that really just makes me proud and really fulfills me is when I start to see that, because all of the frameworks and all of the systems and all of the, you know, the things that we do, when an individual comes in, it's like, he's version 1.0 of himself. And week after week, after week, after week, it's like, he's version 2.0 3.0 4.0. And one of the things that we do inside of the community create ultimate accountability, in regards to like owning up to your shit, we call it the weekly own up, every Sunday, you go live in our group, you're not going to type a check in, you're gonna go live. And I know for me, like years ago, like going live on Facebook, or something like that, or even even stilted today, like, you get those jitters, you're like, I don't want to fuck up, people are gonna judge me, whatever, you create these stories inside of your mind. And so I feel like it elevates it. And it makes it even more authentic. Right? Totally. And that's really the key is to showing up being comfortable getting uncomfortable in an environment of, you know, fellow dads like yourself, I think that's what really takes it to a whole new level. So when guys really buy into that, I mean, that that in itself, you know, helps them transform. And some cool with that is also, you know, got, they say, you know, public speaking is like one of the biggest fears people have click Next to death, like dying. They're like, yeah, that afraid of it. And so we'll have guys come in, and the first owner that they do, it's like stuttery, and they're all over the place, and they don't even make eye contact with the camera. And then you get, you know, four, six weeks in after they've started to change. They've lost some weight, they've gotten stronger. Right, they're eager to see it in their face, they're more confident, they're showing up more present in the moment. And they're, they're more sure of themselves. And they're just delivering a message and they improve their ability to communicate, and just show up as a higher level version of themselves. So it's pretty cool.

Curt Storring 44:38

That's an awesome stuff, man. I love that idea. Yeah, we, we do a lot of stuff with group as well. And it's one of those things that was super transformative for me, because I think, like a lot of our issues stem from just being bad in relationship. And dads especially. Yeah, dads and men not having a space for that. And when you build spaces like that, because we're talking to a guy in one of my groups this morning He's like, Oh, yeah, I tried to join this group before, and it was a parenting group and they were all mums. And I just needed some help being a dad. It's like, Yeah, we don't have anywhere to go. And so when you get that, and you get guys, after the first couple of meetings to be like, well, I can bring my stuff here safely. And everyone's gonna help me or call me up or call me out or call me or whatever. Like, man, that is game changing stuff, especially if you've been lone wolf again, and think that you can do it all. Because when it comes to doing all of this stuff, and being an elite human being elude being an elite man and husband and father, I don't know, man, there's some about a team, that when they got your back, you can just do more, because you also think about that. am I letting these guys down? Am I going to be the one showing up? Who doesn't post my macros today? Am I going to be the guy who doesn't post that? Yeah, I did one on one time with my kids this weekend. It's like, Man, I'm actually inspiring other people. And they're inspiring me. And this flywheel just starts and it's epic, man. So I'm glad you guys are doing that. And I think maybe one of the last things I want to talk about is just why DadBod is so bad in the first place. And I have very strong feelings about this. But it's become like this acceptable thing. I'm busy, modern world can't work out. You know, foods just so plentiful. Dude, I'm so like, packed my business. And it's okay. Like, I'm not that fat. I'm not that overweight. And it's like what most people are in the first place. But there's this idea that it's acceptable and that mediocrity is acceptable. And for me, it obviously is not, if you guys would listen to this podcast, like excellence is one of my core values, and to not have control and discipline and ownership over the body that you are creating, or that you are building. I don't know, man, it speaks so much deeper than simply like, Oh, who cares? How you look? It's a discipline thing. And so what kind of man are you? So what kind of thoughts? Do you have? Can we can we snap some guys out of this arts? Okay, mentality.

Travis Stoetzel 46:48

I think it's really just a way of sedating that and putting it off. It's like denouncing it. It's like, ah, and I'll get this on my ads all the time. I'll get guys that are like, whoa, Dad bods are in. Why would I want to get rid of my dad, but like, I've spent so much time, you know, working on this, you know, we can barbecues, blah, blah, blah, and like, motherfucker, like this, come out and be real about it. Right. And so I feel that's part of it is just people are trying to put up a wall and be like, God, my wife loves my dad, Vaughn is like, let's be serious. Like, if we shifted that around, and it and you were like saying, you know, oh, oh, I love my wife's, you know, fat ass or whatever, right? Like, and I'm not trying to like degrade people. But if we're talking about showing up as the best version of you, does that mean that you're 40 Fucking pounds overweight. And you're cool with that? Because that's basically what a lot of guys are saying. Right? And so that's kind of my take on it. But if if we really kind of look at and you mentioned core values, right, like excellence in your life. And so something that I've had within my gym just years and years and years ago is just kind of a tagline is refuse average. And to refuse average means that you're going to chase excellence, you're going to push for excellence, any sort of mediocrity in your life, you're gonna eliminate it, whether that's with your relationships, you know, with just how you operate on a day to day basis, your habits. And yes, your health and fitness, right. And so, it's just, it's just silly, right? DadBod is in and that's, it's just unfortunate that we've, we've gone that direction, because average is the norm. mediocrity is the norm. There's no hard work required for that. There's, you can just kind of settle and that's that's how it is, you know, participation trophies, so to speak. Like everybody wins, right? No, that's not really how the world works. Right? Yeah. So it's just yeah, one of those things, man.

Curt Storring 49:03

Yeah. And it's just like, when you are when you show up outstanding, your kids notice. Like, I know, I know, my kids notice. I'm like, I'm nowhere near as jacked and ripped as you and some of the coaches out there, you know, I'm getting there. That's absolutely gold. And I just, I think the last six weeks, I'm down like 1314 pounds of skinny fat trying to get a little bit rip before we build on some way. But like, my kids notice this. They say to me, like we don't, we don't talk about, you know, shaming people. Obviously, we don't we never have that kind of conversation or a house. But they'll make comments. Like, I'm glad you're so strong dad. And we'll do things together that I don't see other guys even being able to do. Like when we're out in the field, and we're doing whatever, whether it's burpees or pull ups or push ups or squats or lunges, whatever it is, and it's like the other dad sitting over there looking at his phone, and he couldn't eat if you tried. And that just limits how you can be with your kids. It limits how they see you versus other people. It's like Yeah, I don't know what like, why is he like this? And there's that back of the head thing that your wife and kids must have sometimes, if not all the time, which is like, I guess I'm not worth it. I guess my dad thinks other things are more important. To your point earlier, it's comfort, my dad would rather be comfort than serve me. Because maybe maybe I'm not worth it. And that's an unacceptable in my life. And I think that guys, if you're listening to this, it needs to be unacceptable in your life, too. And I think maybe the very last thing is this idea of action, being the antidote says reading one of your blog posts, and it was like, we both talked to guys in our coaching calls and stuff like that. And these guys are ready to go. They're like, Oh, man, I'm so ready to make a change. These are my pain points. Oh, it sucks so bad. You send them the signup form. And either crickets, or three follow ups later. It's like, oh, well, you know, maybe not the right time sort of thing. I don't even know what the question is here. Other than like, what's the difference between these guys? Who goes forward and crushes it versus the guys who sort of chicken out? And what can we tell these guys? Is it like, here's the results of what you actually get. Because your life flipping changes? Man, I'm sure you're seeing this all the time. But I want to just comment on that before we wrap it

Travis Stoetzel 51:09

up. Yeah, absolutely. So if we kind of go back to what we were just saying, like with the whole DadBod thing, right? Like, it's really, it starts off with what you are going to personally tolerate within within your own life, like, how do you want to show up? How do you want to be seen, and I'm not wanting to judge like, I have plenty of friends that are overweight, and have a dad bod or whatever, like, I still love you, man, I still see everybody as a person, I'm not going to be judging you. But here's the thing about it. And again, I talked about how people are so quick to denounce it, right? They denounce it because they have this fucking fear and doubt, and this disbelief in themselves that they can actually become this higher level version of them. That is lean, that is fit that is energized, that is athletic, that is showing up as the man that they truly want to be because let's be real with this. You know, I would say out of all of the men that I've ever had, have had conversations with, if they're, if they're to be completely honest about, you know, do you want to stay in your current shape that you are, whether that's 1020 3040, or more pounds overweight, with this dad bod? Do you want to stay there? Or would you rather shift over here where you're lean, strong, fit athletic, you look like a fucking savage? What's going to put you in a better position to be the leader for your family? 100% would say I'd go with this, they're not gonna say I'm cool with my dad bought, right? And so it really comes down to the individual making that decision, right. And so in these situations, and this is where the mindset is everything, it's, it's the identity of the individual, right? And so when they get to these situations, where it's like, Alright, man, you just told me, and I've had a lot of these situations, you, you literally just told me that you don't feel your wife is attracted to you anymore. Your kid pinched your belly and asked you why why your guts hanging out. And that was embarrassing. And you get out of breath. When you tie your shoes. You just told me all this stuff. And you've been struggling with this for the last 10 years, trying this trying that. And you see this new pathway, you see this new opportunity with what we do. It's not about you know, quick fix diets. And it's not about, you know, some special training plan that you've never seen before. It's about actual life style, transformation. It's about elevating the current version of you. And so, here's the problem. If you're not ready to take action in this moment, ask yourself why. Why are you not ready to take action? Financials, I get it if you're absolutely completely broke, and you have $0 to your name, which I've had guys sign up for the program that did not have enough money into their account, they opened up a credit card, they fucking found a way to get it done. Because they were ready to actually become that higher level version of themselves. They were ready to start thinking differently is the key. Because every time certain individuals run into a barrier resistance, having to step out of their comfort zone. And yes, when it comes to signing up for a program and investing a lot of money into yourself. That's that's an uncomfortable situation. And what typically happens The reason a guy won't move forward at that point. It's not oh, I need to go chat with my wife and make sure things are cool there. I need to shift money around or it's not that it's that you're fucking scared. You doubt yourself, and you don't actually believe that you're going to be able to become the man that you need to be to get these results. And so it really comes down to thinking at 1.0 version of you, which is going to go run and I'd put things off. And you're still going to deal with this same problem tomorrow, and the next day and the next day until you start to think differently. So it's like, think of the version that you want to become the guy that is lean, strong, fit, energized, confident, he's got the fucking edge. How does a guy in that situation or with those things, how does he operate? How does he make decisions? And then actually ask yourself what you need to do today, in order to become that individual. That's, that's, that's the shift that an individual needs to make. Right? Yeah.

Curt Storring 56:00

That's excellent. Man. Thank you so much for all of this. I want to make sure that we get a link where can people find you? You got a podcast? I think you got programs. You got a website, you got Instagram, let us know where to find you. Best place

Travis Stoetzel 56:10

to go Instagram, the forest father, and then yeah, theforestfather.com be a great place to start.

Curt Storring 56:17

Sweet man. Well, I appreciate this so much. I'm just I'm loving what you're laying down here. And I think it's, I was gonna say motivating or inspiring, but man, I think it just gives guys at the very least permission and get that mindset shift and move forward and actually do something about it. So I appreciate you, bro. And we'll put all these notes, all these links I should say in the show notes Dad.Work/Podcast and we'll see you guys here for the next episode.

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 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 dadwork.curt. That's DADWORK.CURT And please, if you have been getting something out of this podcast, if it has touched you if it has improved your marriage or 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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