This is a special episode of The Sisu Way. The format is different because on this episode, I was a guest on Marcus Aurelius Anderson’s podcast, Acta Non Verba. This episode includes many topics I have not yet discussed on The Sisu Way, so we agreed to release it on both platforms. There is something special about having a conversation with someone who can be in the moment without judgement, committed to seeking understanding, and that is something that happened on this episode.
We spoke about how serving as a law enforcement officer has provided an opportunity to learn empathy and to be aware of perceptions of those who need help. We explored how that responsibility impacts the job, as well as the physical, mental, and emotional impact of those who serve. We discuss coping strategies, stigma, and culture that surrounds reaching out for help and the kind of strength it takes to break that silence.
We also spoke about the origins of The Sisu Way, life, philosophy, culture, and more topics I hope you find worthwhile of your time and attention. If you find any of these topics interesting, want to hear more, have questions, or just want to chat, you can always reach me on Instagram: @scottmcgee.
This episode is dedicated to mastering peace and learning how to live a happy and fulfilling life. I believe a peaceful life is centered on 3 main themes: mastering your desires, performing your duties, and learning to think clearly about yourself and your relations within the larger community of humanity.
My guest Eva Charlotte helps us remember how to do those things. Eva studied and taught with healers, shamans, and masters from many different traditions. Among these masters was Don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements. The Toltec master selected Eva for an individual, intensive training that lasted for nine years, during which she gave talks, taught workshops, and coached individuals alongside don Miguel and his family. But like most of us, our experiences are some of our best teachers. Eva shares extraordinary events that profoundly impacted her perceptions, including near death experiences. Sometimes you need the dark to see the light.
Eva travels the world and shares her life empowering message Rise in Love & Be a Peacemaker, a message of authentic love of self and life, the happiness that comes from stripping away personal stories, beliefs and falsehoods that shield us from our true selves, releasing all need for mental control.
Like strength, to R.I.S.E. in Love is a conscious choice, a deliberate action, a powerful personal statement. Knowing who you are and what you want gives you the foundation to move forward on our path towards peace. It is our hope this episode helps guide you in the direction you may need.
Erik Swoope is an NFL Tight End with a humble spirit who was with the Indianapolis Colts the past 5 seasons. He is 6’5”, 250 lbs, athletic, fast, and moves with the mass of a truck and coordination of a gymnast. The impressive part is this: He’s never played football before playing in the NFL. The more impressive part is that for as big and strong as Erik is, his character is more powerful. If perseverance, depth, gratitude, humility, and grit were measurable statistical categories, Erik would not only be an All-Pro amongst the NFL, he would be in the Pro Bowl of humans.
This episode is dedicated to understanding where Erik’s grit and gratitude come from, his upbringing, and the importance and meaning of family. We look at his accomplishments in the classroom, community, and on the court/field. We learn what it’s like to go from playing ACC basketball at the University of Miami to playing football for the first time (ever) in the NFL.
Want to know what it feels like to score a touchdown in the NFL? This episode is for you. Want to know how to overcome setbacks with a growth mindset and perseverance? This episode is for you. How you handle yourself when everything is great is one thing, but the best of us excel in the face of adversity. That struggle is where true strength is forged.
Into: Keep Your Dream
Don’t let your own will be the reason you fail. Keep that will strong and unconquerable. There are too many dreams buried in the cemetery of collapsed wills. Not yours. Be unconquerable. -Scott McGee
8:30 Where does Erik’s grit come from? What does it mean to be a Swoope man?
18:30 Family and upbringing. “If you start something you have to finish it.”
25:50 Athletic background as a kid. First dunk at 12 years old.
Lake Elsinore to Harvard Westalke (Los Angeles)
36:20 What are some of highlights from high school? “My struggle.”
One of my fondest memories. I found out how to do something the right way. I knew how to put in the effort, but are you doing it in a way that benefits you.
39:30 More proud of academics or sports?
The school work was where I had to prove to myself that I’m willing to go through something with no one else’s help. I had to find a way.
41:05 When did Erik figure out he was really good at sports?
48:00 How went from high school in SoCal to Miami to play basketball. What was it like leaving family?
56:22 Train Keeps Moving: No matter what happens in your life the train keeps moving and it doesn’t stop for anyone. If you think that life is going to hold up because you hit something… that train is going to keep moving.
59:00 Post college – The interest from the NFL Scouts. They want to see if Erik had “football traits.”
Learning football and drills. Try outs. 4.57 40 on first try.
1:01:40 Jimmy Graham – Mentor – First advice from former basketball player turned football player. “Football is not fun”. Ha.
1:10:40 Workout with NFL scout to the Indianapolis Colts
1:17:45 Learning the basics of football.
1:24:34 First time getting hit really hard in practice and a game. First Catch.
1:30:30 What it was like playing with Andrew Luck.
1:34:40 What it feels like to score a touchdown in the NFL.
1:39:40 The hardest part of playing football in the NFL… Handling stress
1:41:11 Where does Erik find the fun?
1:49:00 Purchases with NFL money.
1:51:50 NFL journey through being undrafted, injuries, practice squad, active roster.
In game experiences…
Responding from injuries, surgery, and learning to recover stronger than before.
2:07:18 Where does he go from here? Restricted Free Agent
2:09:16 What do you do with your doubts? I try and take that energy and put it into my training. My journey is not like anyone else’s.
The mind is a battlefield, and we are all warriors. We are in a war for independence, for the right to use our own mind and break free. We are strong enough to break free from our own mental cage, like a rope tied to an elephant’s leg. The journey starts with our awareness. Awareness leads to choice. From choice comes the strength for action. We have the ability to discriminate and focus only on which we choose to perceive. This is called attention. We have been taught a certain way for a long time, but we can make agreements with ourselves to improve who we are, how we behave, and the results we want to achieve. We can discover our inner fire and learn to live with intention, arête, and impeccability: To break free from the rope. This episode on The Four Agreements will show you how to do that.
The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Don Miguel Ruiz shows us the self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. Based on ancient Toltec wisdom, The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love. I pair this book with The Art of Living: The Classical Manual on Virtue, Happiness, and Effectiveness by Epictetus. The messages in these books are thousands of years apart, yet they parallel and intertwine with grace in how they face challenges of everyday life.
You need a strong will to adopt the Four Agreements, but Strength is a Choice. If you can adopt these agreements, the growth will be self-empowering. You will be the master of your own peace. Your self-awareness will recalibrate your ability to self-regulate. You are the captain of your soul. It is my hope that this episode helps show you how powerful you are.
Dr. Lindsey K. Mathews bio says she is a doctor of chiropractic, birth doula, NLP practitioner, strength and conditioning coach, and creator of the rockstar movement, BIRTHFIT! Beyond her extraordinary titles, Lindsey views every obstacle as an opportunity. She is a resilient woman in pursuit of truth, reflection, growth, and connection. Simply put, Lindsey is a peaceful warrior on a trailblazing mission to spread love.
Through the lens of friendship, exploration, and mutual respect, we discuss the trials we endure that introduces us to our strengths. We acknowledge that even at rock bottom, nobody is coming to save you. You have the ability to see that the universe isn’t doing something to you. It’s doing something for you. You have the ability to live a happy life through gratitude and service, you just may need a little guidance. When asked what she wanted to be remembered by, Lindsey said: To educate and empower women, so they have the tools to transition though any obstacle in life. It’s my goal that this episodes helps.
How do you create an unbeatable mind that provides the fortitude, grit, sisu, invictus, and mental toughness to overcome adversity? How do you positively alter your mental state? This is the episode that answers those questions.
The goal of this episode is to bring awareness on how we make decisions and how we take action and responsibility for our lives in an intentional way.Self-awareness is something we can develop.This awareness is what creates choice.
My guest is Ryan Munsey, author of the book, F*ck Your Feelings.Ryan is an artful scientist who has the drive, curiosity, and compassion to explore thereason of why some people succeed and others do not.He is also a high performance consultant, speaker, and host of the podcast, The Better Human Project.We discuss how to master your mind, accomplish your goals, and become a better human while being rooted in gratitude and lifted by awareness.
Moments – You are writing you’re own eulogy. When you’re gone, People will think and speak of you in the way that you live your life. We have the ability to shape how that conversation goes by the way that we move through the world.Those moments are a choice.
7:16Line in the sand – What are you going to do?
15:20Who are you and what does it mean to be a good human?
18:34You can control your Attitude and Effort.
19:50Your life is perfectly designed for the results that you are getting.
23:15How do you measure success? Hint: It shouldn’t be extrinsic.
Chris Dancy – We don’t know how to measure what we value so we begin to value what we measure.
The Rocking Chair Test – Health, Happiness, Performance
28:00 Can you measure happiness?Heart Rate Variability
31:18The 85 year-old Challenge.Memento Mori
Appreciation not Expectation.
36:00How do we positively affect our mental states? How the brain makes a decision.
44:20 95% of our decisions are based on how we feel in any given moment.
Feelings – a mental experience of a physiological state.If we change our physiology we can change our feelings.
46:30Limbic System – emotional ego driven teenager – feelings – the now
Prefrontal Cortex – the sage. – awareness
58:50What is the vagus nerve and how does it affect you?
Emotional Resiliency – Bandwith
1:10:35How to stay relaxed in traffic.
1:12:00Wim Hof Method
Breathwork – how to stimulate your vagus nerve and why its important to exhale longer than inhale.
Cold Exposure – Stay parasympathetic in an environment that normally makes you sympathetic.
1:19:00 What you can do right now to improve mental resilience and toughness.
Developing grit though: Cold showers – look towards the sky and focus on the breath.
Be kind, be rooted in gratitude turn off defense mechanisms, etc.
Posture – Don’t sit or stand like a victim.
1:39:05 Playing – Don’t be the reason you stop playing.