What is Value?
I'm ready to have some fun. I hope you guys are. I know that Jordan had given you guys a lot of great stuff. AJ had given you guys som great tactics, and I want to add to that because all the tactics are great and they give us a blueprint, but what they don't do is they don't allow us to feel good in those interactions if we're not yet experienced in them. And the thing is, how many of you guys have been out to an event, you felt you did okay, you've met a few people, but when you went home you started thinking about it? Was I too needy, was I approval seeking, did they like me? All of us have had those episodes. and we spend all this unnecessary time worrying about these things when they can easily be fixed with a little bit of experience and some tips on that, so that's what I wanted to share today. So, what we're gonna talk about is value. And what I mean when I say value, is attention, approval, and acceptance. And the value that you have for yourself is basically the programming t...
hat you have. All of us have a programming and that programming comes from years and years of experience. So when I talk about attention, the three things about attention are, getting interest for yourself, getting eyes on you, this is very important. Approval, feeling good about taking interest in things and knowing people appreciate that. And lastly acceptance, feeling good about belonging to a group. Now the thing about value and why it's so important, is all of us have learned ways to get attention, approval and acceptance for ourselves. We learned at a early age. What did we do when we were children when we wanted something from our parents? And we begged for it. Even before that we would cry to get attention approval and acceptance. Unfortunately some people haven't learned any other steps except for those. Talking about our programming, what I'd like to do, since I already had talked about it, is I want to give you a bit of what my programming was and where I had gotten mine. AJ earlier had talked a little bit about peeling the onion back, and he gave you his narrative. Well I'm about to give you mine, so you have a little bit of understanding where I'm coming from with this. So I grew up in a town called Greensburg, Pennsylvania. It's about thirty minutes southeast of Pittsburgh, and it was settled as a mining town in the late 1800's. Now, what do you think that sort of lifestyle, working in those mines at that time would be like?
Yeah, what time do you think you would go to work?
Early. Probably before sun-up, right? What time would you come home?
Probably late, after sundown. What sort of things in that mine did they have at that time to protect you while working in those mines?
Not much, if anything.
Very little at all. And I had also read that some of those mines, this was before they had unions and workers' rights. So it wasn't about you clocking in and starting to get paid. It was about how much coal you would bring out of those mines. And I had even read stories about mineshafts, about four feet tall, and the miners having to walk three miles into those to even begin to work. Now, my great grandfather had worked in those mines, in fact he brought our family over from eastern Europe. So what sort of life do you think my great grandfather had in Eastern Europe, to where that was the American dream, that sounded like opportunity? What do you think Brian?
It must have been pretty bad.
Yeah, probably starvation, persecution, that sort of thing. So he brought my family, he had brought his family over, to work in those mines, and what do you think he had to say to my grandfather when my grandfather had asked, Why did we come here? Why did you take me from my friends? Why did you take me from the area that we lived in to come here, to America, and now I don't see you working in these mines all day?
Chasing the dream? Trying to make it?
Yeah, you know, you're too young to understand the new opportunities that you have now, because of what I have done for you, right. When you grow older you're gonna understand the opportunities that you had, and the sacrifice that I had to take to bring us over here. And so, my grandfather, he had went to the service, and when he got out of the service, he had went to a factory called Westing House, and Westing House made appliance parts. And my grandfather worked at a part of that factory which housed the superconductor. Now I wasn't really sure what that meant, all I knew was that he had died from his ailments of working in that part of the factory. And because of the sacrifices he made, he was able then to get our family some land, and put a house on that property. He had put a farm on that property, cows, chickens, the whole nine. And my dad, when he would go off to school in the morning, would have to go tend to the farm, tend to the animals, feed them, put them all out in the pasture, then go to school, only to come home to go back to work, shovel manure, feed all the animals, bring them all back in, and he would complain to his dad, and his complaint was, I have all these chores to do. All the other kids are playing. Why can't I be free like the other kids, why do I have to do all these chores, and his remark was, You're lucky to have animals to tend to. You're lucky to have crops to tend to. We grew up on the mining camp. We didn't have those opportunities. So fast forward to me being born in the 70's, my dad worked at a place called PPG, which was named Pittsburgh Plate Glass, and PPG made windshields for cars. And my dad worked in the furnace part of that factory where the presses would come down and bend the glass to the models of those cars, and he would put in factory days of 10 hours, and of course I would complain to him as a child, Dad, the video games that I have are just not cutting it. This was Atari 2600 days, This game sucks. And he's like, You're lucky to be playing video games, you know what I was doing when I was your age? I was shoveling shit in the morning. You wanna go shovel shit? Well no no, I guess these games are alright. So my point in this story is, I grew up in a very blue-collar, lunch pail town, and it was a very blue-collar, lunch pail mindset. And the narrative of that was all about hard work. It was all about being tough, it was all about, life's not fair, and it's cruel and it's tough, and you need to be tougher if you're going to survive. And you're gonna need to be tough if your family is going to make it. And through that mindset, that may have been what was instilled in my household, but the other neighbor kids, the same lectures I was getting, they were getting, because they had the same ancestral background, and so, they had the same narrative and outlook on life as I did. And even when I turned on the television, growing up in the 70's, our sports teams emulated the town that we were growing up in. The Pittsburgh Steelers in the 70's were blue-collar, hard-nosed, lunch pail football team. And if they were more tough or more physical than the other teams, they would be able to win a game. And if they weren't, they were losers, they were bums. And so even the media portrayed that same narrative. So everywhere I looked around, it was told to me that life's tough, life's not fair, it's going to be hard, and if I wasn't tough enough, then I wouldn't persevere. And so that mindset gave me the only tool that I can remember having to go out in life, which was a metaphorical hammer of tenacity and stubbornness. And if I wanted anything, I would have to use that hammer to get it, and if I wasn't able to get what I wanted using tenacity and stubbornness, then I wasn't tough enough. I was a bum. I was a loser. Even in my household when I was to express myself, complain to my dad, bitch about something, express myself in a weak manner, I would always hear the same comeback, which is, Listen, if you wanna talk like that, talk like that around your mother, I just spent 10 hours in a factory bending glass, I don't want to hear it. I was like, okay, so in order for me to get attention, approval, and acceptance, I found music. My dad had a band and they would play on the weekends. And so when I was old enough to take interest in it, picking up a guitar, playing drums, these are the things that got me attention, approval, and acceptance in such a positive way, that my own value intrinsically got wrapped up in those very things as a small child. So when I was 21 years old, I went off to Carolina to start my music career, and there was a town there called Chapel Hill that had a lot of great music going on, and I wanted to be a part of that. But at 21, and my hammer of tenacity and stubbornness, I went down there to start a band. And getting a band together was tough, but if I couldn't persevere, if I couldn't make that happen, well then I'm a bum, I'm a loser. So with tenacity and stubbornness I managed to scrape together a few guys, we went in a rehearsal room, we got some songs together, and then, what did we need at that point? Well we need to play gigs. Well how do you get a gig? Well I wasn't sure, but I had a hammer of tenacity and stubbornness that said, If I try hard enough I'll get that gig, and I got that gig by beating on doors, by calling booking agents nonstop until they finally just said, Hey, here's a Monday night. Please quit calling here. You can play. Great, I got the gig. I guess I'm not a bum, I guess I'm not a loser, and of course, band would play, and the thing is we would need to get people out if that show was gonna be successful. So how do I promote, how do I publicize the show? I'm not really sure, but I'm gonna use this hammer to make sure that I get people out. So through tenacity, through stubbornness, people come out to the show. Did well for the bar, we had gotten another show. That meant that I have to go back out with this hammer to get people out for the next show. And because of the work that I did, we had gotten a residency, residency, if you don't know, is a weekly or biweekly gig that you could build something off of. And so after getting that residency, I had realized that now I have to take this hammer, and go out and get people every other week to this show. You can imagine how sick people are of me talking about these shows that I have coming up every week. But, through tenacity, through stubbornness, we had got a little following, and I thought, well the next thing I need to do is to make a record. And how do I make a record? Well I'm not really sure, but I'm gonna use this hammer of tenacity and stubbornness to figure it out, and of course I did. We had a record. How do you promote said record? Well I don't know, I'm gonna have to figure this out. Hammer, tenacity, and stubbornness, let's go out, let's promote it. Let's go on tour. Well how do we get a tour booked? Well I don't know, I'm gonna have to figure it out with this hammer of tenacity and stubbornness. Now through that blue-collar, lunch pail work ethic, I was able to do a lot of great things. But the problem with it is, it gets tiring after a while when all you can think about is swinging this hammer. And I could be off, in some country, Sweden, going from Uppsula to Stockholm, to the next gig, and as great as it was to be traveling like that, with my band, in a van, in some foreign country, the only thing that I can think about is, when I get home, I have to take out this hammer and start swinging it at the next object, at the next goal. And it's starting to seem like it's never going to stop. And it would start to get frustrating for me. And the idea of going to sleep at night, I would be angry, frustrated, only thinking about the work that I'm gonna have to do tomorrow to make this next goal happen. But that sort of lifestyle doesn't last very long. And after a while of swinging this hammer, band members coming in and out, things got kinda weird, and I saw that the band at the time had a tour passed over, had a record deal passed over, because we couldn't keep the lineup straightened out, and things just weren't working out the way that I wanted it to. Which put me in a place of having to cut my losses and starting over. Now for someone who derives all their value from playing shows, making records, being on tour, to now having to go back to just bartending, working at a club, trying to put a band back together, you can imagine how I felt about myself at that point. Because to me, I just couldn't swing the hammer hard enough. I just couldn't keep it going, and now I'm the bum, I'm the loser, I was not tough enough to make this happen. And that's the way I thought about it. And it made me very angry, and it made me very depressed, to the point where I didn't want to get out of bed, I didn't feel very good about myself, I was apathetic to everything, numb to the world. And thinking about it only made me more upset about the whole thing, and so I had some friends who were very worried about me, they were very successful, they were doing the things that I wanted to do, and they were very positive and very happy. And it got to the point where I started asking, talking to them about their lives and how they got to where they were going, and upon that I started to learn, that the narrative that I had was one of many. And there was other ways of going about things that I just wasn't clued into. In fact, when I would hear things such as ... My narrative was that the world is tough, it's gonna punch me in the face, I needed to be more physical and more tough than the world, and all of the sudden I'm hearing things like, Oh, well the world can actually be a place that hands you the things that you want if you learn how to treat the world as a place that would do that for you. And of course my first thoughts coming from where I grew up and how I grew up was, What kind of hippie bullshit is this? You gotta be out of your mind. The world is dark. It's cold. It's mean, and you need to be tough. But at this point, I had given up with everything else, and I was open to the idea of giving something new a try. So I started to learn about value, and I started to learn about high value behavior and low value behavior, and started to see a lot of flaws in my thought processes, and how I viewed the world, and so I'd like to share those with you all, and hopefully through my story, you're able to relate some pieces about your programming.