150: Mike Finkel – Lessons from 27 years Alone in the Woods and other Incredible True Tales

Mike Finkel’s bio reads more like Indiana Jones than a Journalist. He has traveled the world in his work for various magazines including climbing volcanos, delving into caves, meeting with native tribes in Tanzania, ascending the mountains of Afghanistan, hunting for extremely rare mushrooms in Tibet, and even investigating the black market human organ trade. He has written various, nonfiction books across a wide range of topics and has another on the way.

Mike joins me this week to discuss his latest book, A Stranger In the Woods, which revolves around a man who spent 27 years in the woods of Maine without ever coming in contact with a single person or even lighting a fire. We talk about Mike’s unique creative process and how he chooses the topics for his books. We also talk about how unique and valuable ever person’s story is.

“I believe that everybody has a fascinating story to tell, and nobody, if you ask the right questions, is really boring”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • The life of a writer
  • Studying the world’s last hermit
  • How to develop crucial interviewing skills
  • No story is boring
  • Pursuing what interests you

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

149. Tony Bartelme – A Surgeon in the Village: The Impact One Person Can Have

Tony Bartelme is a Three-Time Pulitzer Prize nominee, narrative storyteller, and investigative journalist. He has recently spent five months in Tanzania in order to capture and tell the story of brilliant brain surgeon Dilan Ellegala, which began with a post-residency vacation and ended with a revolution of Tanzania’s medical training programs. Tony documented Dilan’s story in a book which he titled A Surgeon in the Village: An American Doctor Teaches Brain Surgery in Africa.

Tony joins me today to discuss the impact that a single individual can have, especially the amazing change wrought out by surgeon Dilan Ellagala in Tanzania. We talk about the global shortage of doctors and the immense number of lives that could be saved each year if they only had access to proper surgical care. We also touch on the importance of teaching, and the passing on of our knowledge for the betterment of others. Lastly, we discuss Tony’s unique writing and reporting process.

“Failure is a gift, as long as you learn from it”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • The story of a Surgeon in the Village
  • The power of teaching
  • The gift of failure
  • Standstill – the craziest surgery imaginable
  • Clear intentions and their value
  • The writing process

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

148. Oren Jay Sofer – Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach To Nonviolent Communication

Oren Jay Sofer is a long-time mindfulness teacher, coach, and author of Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach To Nonviolent Communication. Oren has spent many years studying and practicing Buddhism, Yoga, and Mindfulness. He has since used those skills to lead trainings in various companies on a wide range of mindfulness topics.

Oren joins me today to discuss communication and the significant power that our words can have. We talk about the techniques we can use to keep our communication nonviolent and effective. We also touch on the obstacles and challenges that can make communication more difficult, and how to overcome them.

“Presence is our natural state.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • Presence
  • The power of breath
  • Buddhist tradition
  • The impact of proper communication
  • Writing skills
  • The power of habit

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

147. Don Miguel Ruiz Jr – The Seven Secrets To Healthy Happy Relationships

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr is the author of five books, including his latest publication The Seven Secrets To Healthy Happy Relationships. Don belongs to a family with a rich heritage in the Mexican Toltec tradition. Having learned the tradition from the teachings and preachings of his grandmother, Don now dedicates his life to helping others heal from the wounds that conditional love inflicted upon them.

Don joins me today to discuss the importance and power of unconditional love, a mission that he and his family have been dedicated to for generations. We talk about domestication, and how we can influence the person we become. We discuss the idea of commitment and love, and how you can better love others unconditionally. We talk about the difference between guilt and remorse and how it relates to forgiveness. We also touch on the definition of love, and it’s wide array of applications. Lastly, he shares with me his insights on the creative process and what it takes to get a book written.

“Whenever I judge someone, I’m punishing them for an agreement they never made.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • Toltec traditions
  • Domestication
  • Living into your potential
  • What love is
  • Condition vs unconditional love
  • Difference between guilt and remorse
  • Commitment

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

146. Michael Moss – Hooked: How the Food Giants Exploit Our Addictions

Michael Moss is a Pulitzer prize winning reporter and author of Hooked: Food, Free Will, and How the Food Giants Exploit Our Addictions. Michael is known for his work as an investigative reporter and his time spent digging into the food industry and their questionable tactics. He has been a reporter for the Wall Street Journal before joining the New York Times in 2000. He has been a guest on various talk shows, including The Daily Show and CBS This Morning.

Michael joins me today to discuss the life of an investigative reporter. We talk about some of his greatest discoveries and how he dug them up. We also talk at length about the food industry and how they have adapted their products to play to our natural inclination towards sugar. He details to me a dilemma between the “go” brain and the “stop” brain; and how sugar can confuse the two. We finish by talking about the creative process and how it differs for investigative reporters.

“You can’t jog off junk food.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • Addiction, what is it?
  • Memory’s influence on addiction
  • The faster the substance is processed, the greater the impact
  • How fat impacts our ability to process information
  • How to tell good stories

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

145 Boyd Varty – The Lion Tracker’s Guide To Life

Boyd Varty is an experienced tracker, a skill he gained from a growing up on the Londolozi Wild Game Reserve in South Africa. He spent his early years exploring the terrain and learning the trade of a tracker, before taking over the reserve that his grandfather started. It was there that he met a particular woman who opened his eyes to the more important things in life. He has since ventured to do the same for others, striving to help them “track” their lives and discover their true purposes. He has written two books in this effort, The Lion Tracker’s Guide To Life, and Cathedral of the Wild: An African Journey Home.

Boyd joins me today to talk about his unique journey through life, including what it was like to grow up on an African game reserve, and a higher calling he found that urged him to leave. We talk about the skills that an experienced tracker must gain, and how they apply to coaching. He also sheds a very unique and naturalistic perspective on what it means to live a good life.

“Let go of the outcome and just do the next thing that feels good.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • Finding your inner harmony
  • Life on the Londolozi Game Reserve
  • A change in life paths
  • Skills of a tracker
  • Finding your path
  • Clean fear versus dirty fear
  • How to become a good storyteller

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

144. Edward Creagan – Farewell: End-of-Life Lessons From 40,000 Patients

Edward Creagan is a two-time author, and the Mayo Clinic’s first provider to be board certified in hospice and palliative medicine. He has written over 500 scientific papers and has spoken at more than 1000 presentations around the world. Doctor Ed began his interest and journey toward hospice care at the early age of eight years old. He has since grown in his passion for end-of-life care and is determined to help caregivers do their job without burning out.

Doctor Ed joins me today to discuss the importance of making other’s days better, how to properly care for others, and how to do so healthily. We also talk about the dying process, and the best way to help others through it. We talk about the role of the caregiver, and the immense toll it can have on a person who does it full time. Lastly, we discuss the importance of thorough end-of-life financial planning.

“If you don’t take care of yourself, there’s no backup. There’s nobody left to take care of your spouse, your neighbor, your friend or your partner.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • The importance of helping others
  • The importance of proper financial planning
  • Exploration of the dying process
  • Honoring the dying person’s preferences
  • Why dying individuals have a tendency to hang on
  • The strain of being a full-time caregiver
  • How to prolong your life

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

143. Pam Mandel – The Same River Twice

Pam as worn many hats in her time, but above all she is a traveler and a writer. Pam has lived a very eventful life, starting with her senior year trip to Israel just as they entered a war. She has hiked across the Middle East, relying heavily on the help and kindness of strangers. She has survived abusive relationships and talks heavily to the value of being listened to. She shares all these lessons and more in her new book The Same River Twice.

Pam joins me today to discuss the various powerful experiences she has been through in her life, and the wide range of life lessons she gained along the way. We discuss the many amazing strangers she met along her journeys, and why she trusted them so much. She tells me about her history in writing, how she got started and why she still writes today, as well as how her writing has evolved over time. We also talk about what inspired her to write it these lessons and experiences down in her new book The Same River Twice.

“I know why you are silent. I know why you stayed. It is never too late to tell your story. You deserve so much better. I believe you.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • The power of breakfast
  • What it is like being a teenager in the middle of a war
  • Understanding and getting away from bad relationships
  • The influence of kind strangers
  • Friends have powerful influence
  • The evolution of a writer

Resources Mentioned:

The Same River Twice: A Memoir of Dirtbag Backpackers, Bomb Shelters, and Bad Travel

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142. Jim Davidson – The Next Everest

Jim Davidson is a lifetime climber and expedition leader, spending over thirty years of his life pursuing the tallest peaks this Earth has to offer. Jim has summited Mount Everest, where he survived earthquakes, avalanches, and he’s even escaped alone from an 80 foot deep glacial crevasse. He was hiking Everest in 2015, when a record-setting earthquake shook the mountain, trapping dozens of hikers in the snow. After miraculously surviving that day, he returned in 2017 and summitted the mountain. This experience, and what he learned from it, has been the main inspiration for Jim’s recent book The Next Everest.

Jim joins me this week to talk about his life-long interest in hiking, and his endless search for “awe”. We also discuss Jim’s fascinating view on time and how he uses it help maintain a healthy lifestyle. We talk about the physical and mental strain that affected his body as he hiked Everest, and the methods he used to combat both. Jim is especially good at goal setting, which we dig into a little bit as well. I hope you enjoy my interview with my new friend, Jim Davidson, and appreciate his unique views on what it means to live a good life!

“Pick something that speaks to you and strive for it.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • Doing the best with what is handed to you
  • Surviving the deadliest day on Everest
  • Rebuilding Nepal
  • Making sacrifices to experience life while you’re young
  • The power of leading by example

Resources Mentioned:

The Next Everest: Surviving the Mountain’s Deadliest Day and Finding the Resilience to Climb Again

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Connect with Jim:

Professional Page

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!

141. Avi Loeb – Extraterrestrial: The First Sign of Intelligent Life Beyond Earth

As the TIME’s magazine “most influential person in space”, Avi Loeb is at the forefront of all things interstellar. Avi is the longest standing chairman over the Harvard Black Hole Initiative, and has served as the lead advisor for space at the White House. Avi has spent the vast majority of his life studying the stars and pioneered research into the first stars that came into existence in our universe. Avi’s latest efforts have been focused on the young people, trying to motivate them to pursue their interests in the field of science and continue the ongoing research into the mystery of space.

Avi joins me this week to discuss his latest book, Extraterrestrial, and the amazing interstellar discovery that formed the foundation for it’s climb to number one on the New York Times Bestseller list. We discuss the possibility of alien life, and the possible source of the remarkable space anomaly Avi and his team discovered in 2017. Avi shares with me his passion for the sciences and his disagreement with the current trend of the community. He hopes to reshape the future of science, and has been focusing his recent efforts on motivating youth to pursue an interest in the universe around us.

“The study of science is meant to be a discussion with nature, not a monologue.”

This week on the School For Good Living Podcast:

  • We should all be focusing on furthering the human race as a whole
  • How they first identified the asteroid Oumuamua
  • The vast array of implications of such a discovery
  • The future of the science community
  • Inspiring a love of science in children
  • The enlightening lighting round from an interstellar perspective

Resources Mentioned:

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Thank you for listening to this week’s episode of the School For Good Living Podcast, I hope you found it as insightful as I did! If you enjoyed this episode, then be sure to head over to goodliving.com and sign up for our email list to receive special reminders and exclusive content sent right to your inbox. Explore our website to learn more about the many services I offer, like my Transformation Coaching Program, Coach Training Program, and my catalog of quotations to help you live a good life!