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Home Human Potential Newsfeed How Ben Nearly Got Divorced & The 3 Critical Components of Parenting…
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How Ben Nearly Got Divorced & The 3 Critical Components of Parenting…


From podcast: https://bengreenfieldlife.com/podcast/isaac-erica-jones-parenting-podcast/

[00:00:00] Introduction

[00:01:23] Podcast Sponsors

[00:06:58] Who are Isaac and Erica Jones?

[00:10:06] What does their morning health optimization routine looks like this?

[00:17:46] How did Isaac and Erica meet and marry?

[00:20:38] How Isaac and Erica built their business with their unique gifts?

[00:33:15] Podcast Sponsors

[00:38:01] Ben and his son’s first company together

[00:41:04] Three main elements in Isaac and Erica’s parenting approach

[01:00:12] Isaac’s and Ben’s breakfast

[01:01:52] The love language and marriage problems

[01:25:08] How to manage your presence as father and husband with travel?

[01:40:27] Disrupt event in Atlanta

[01:45:28] Closing the Podcast

[01:47:16] End of Podcast

Ben:  My name is Ben Greenfield. And, on this episode of the Ben Greenfield Life podcast.

Erica:  One of the things I love so much about homeschooling is that I can weave and we can weave the truth of who God is into every aspect of education whether we’re talking about science and how animals are created or we’re talking about nature and what’s outside; even concepts around math and numbers, all of that was created by Him. So, in our homeschooling routine, I’m reading through the Bible with my kids. I’m asking them, “What did you get out of that? Did you hear anything that spoke to you?” And, when we first started doing that, it was actually recommended to me by a curriculum that I use. And, I was kind of like, “Are they really going to get anything?” Like, “Are they going to get anything if I’m reading out of the Old Testament? Is anything going to really resonate with them because when we started this they were 7 and 5?” But, the things that they would get, the things that they would pull out–

Isaac:  Were shocking.

Erica:  It would surprise me.

Ben:  Faith, family, fitness, health, performance, nutrition, longevity, ancestral living, biohacking and a whole lot more. Welcome to the show.

So, a while ago, I did a podcast with these folks that make oil. Now, you’ve no doubt heard me talk about how seed oils are a huge problem. Vegetable oils are linked to widespread health and environmental issues; yet, they’re in everything that we eat. They’re cheap, they’re found in most restaurants and packaged foods, even fancy restaurants use them in their dressings and their sauces and their marinades and their cooking oils. But, the problem is these seed oils are high in linoleic acid and omega-6 fatty acids. Two things your body needs but not in the amounts you’re getting them from seed oil. They’re very high in inflammatory-promoting compounds if you’re eating them in the amount that the average person. Sometimes, even the average healthy person is eating them.

Now, when I interviewed these folks from a farm called Zero Acre, they described this super cool process where they are creating in a planet-friendly way an oil that’s like a vegetable oil but has more monounsaturated fat than even olive oil and avocado oil, 10 times less omega-6 fatty acids than these seed oils, incredibly high smoke point for cooking, 485 degrees Fahrenheit, clean neutral taste, so it’s perfect for cooking and baking and salad dressings and you just use it as a one-to-one replacement for any liquid oil. It’s called Zero Acre. And, at Zero Acre Farms, they make this cultured oil. It has 10 times smaller environmental footprint as well. They use recyclable aluminum packaging when they send the bottle of this stuff to your house that totally blocks the UV light, which prevents oxidation of the oil. It’s gluten-free, vegan and glyphosate residue free, certified allergen friendly, Whole30 approved. And, when you get a bottle of this oil, they are going to throw in an exclusive offer. What you do is you go to zeroacre.com/Greenfield. That’s Z-E-R-O-A-C-R-E.com/Greenfield. Exclusive offer and discount. You got to try this oil. It’s amazing to have on hand. And, I still use some extra virgin olive oil and some avocado oil, a little butter, a little ghee, but this stuff is a staple for anything you want it for. And again, it’s neutrally flavored so it works for any recipe without kind of altering the flavor of the recipe. So, check them out, Zero Acre Farms at zeroacre.com/Greenfield and you can use discount code GREENFIELD.

Hey. So, I recently posted actually to Instagram the idea of getting up in the morning, having a big glass of water, charging yourself up with all these things that allow the cells to take up more light like methylene blue or chlorella or shilajit, and then getting into red light or sunlight for 20 minutes. The reason for that is because all of those compounds I mentioned enhance the body’s ability to uptake photons of light and produce ATP and I do this every day. When it comes to age reversal, feeling like a teenager, producing massive amounts of energy in the absence of calories, this strategy just works. And, the way I do it is I get up, I have the morning glass of water, I go down to my office and I flip on these panels. I’m sandwiched in between two big red light panels. And, the panels that I use treat my entire body in a very short period of time, the reason for that is I use these red lights from a company called Joovv.

So, Joovv source is only the highest quality materials, medical grade components. They’ve undergone third-party testing. They’ve got safety marks from nationally recognized testing laboratories. It’s a very safe, very reliable way to get full body red light in a very convenient manner, in a very short period of time based on the power and the dosage of these things. Incredibly safe, incredibly efficacious. They do have one called the Joovv Go that I travel with and that I’ll use for bedtime reading at night, for treating sore joints, for putting between my legs to get a little bit of an extra testosterone boost when I’m laying in bed. You can get access to all the Joovv stuff and get an exclusive discount on your first order from Joovv. Here’s how. Go to J-O-O-V-V.com/Ben and apply code BEN to get that instant exclusive discount on any order. So, it’s J-O-O-V-V.com/Ben and use code BEN.

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Well, folks, I’m excited about today’s show because my guest, he’s actually been on the show before. He is a dear friend of mine. Gosh, Isaac, how long have I known you? For like a decade? Maybe more.

Isaac:  Yeah, I think a little bit more than that. Yeah. 

Ben:  Yeah. Well, all I remember is you came to my house and nearly kicked my own butt on my own obstacle course during a business mastermind that we had at my house and I was like, “Oh, this dude not only talks the talk but he walks the walk.” And, I know you have a real background in athleticism and sports as well, but you came on my podcast to talk about chronic fatigue and hidden causes of fatigue that most doctors don’t know about and won’t test for. And, that was a great episode. I’ll link to that in the shownotes. By the way, anybody who wants to access the shownotes, they’re going to be a BenGreenfieldLife.com/JonesFamily. That’s BenGreenfieldLife.com/JonesFamily. 

So, I’ll link to that first podcast that Isaac and I did, but Isaac has been coined by Jeff Arnold who’s the founder of WebMD.com as the doctor of the future. And, that’s because he’s kind of pioneering the future of health care. He’s the founder and CEO of Health Experts Alliance, which is a company that educates forward-thinking doctors and health entrepreneurs to build a predictably profitable freedom-creating businesses. So, he basically coaches people in health how to do well, how to make money basically with what they’re doing in a very creative way. And, he has these events all over the world and he’s a very passionate guy as you’re about to find out. Not only about health but about family and community and God and all these other things that are of course way more important than just the money-making side of medicine.

Now, here’s what’s interesting. I grew to know Isaac and then also discovered that he is a dedicated father and husband. He’s the father to three sons and one daughter and he and his wife, Erica, live in Atlanta. And, after having a few conversations with Isaac about parenting and about family, I decided that I wanted to feature Isaac and Erica in my book “Boundless Parenting.” They graciously agreed and so they have a fantastic chapter in “Boundless Parenting.” So good. In fact, they want to get them on the show today to discuss a lot of their concepts around family and health. Isaac and I will probably have a little bit of time at the end also to talk to you about some of the other things that he’s up to in the realm of health. So, I suppose if you don’t care about families or kids or parenting or any other important things at all and just fast forward to the end or sit here bored the rest of the time, I’m also excited because Erica, Isaac’s wife decided to join us. So Erica, what’s up?

Erica:  What’s up, Ben? It’s good to see you.

Ben:  Yeah, it’s good to see you too. And, you and I obviously haven’t a chance to talk as much as Isaac and I have, but–okay.

So, I got to ask you guys this because I know that parenting is important to you kids and family are important to you, but you also care about your health. So, I’m just wondering for you guys, what your own health optimization routine looked like this morning, literally this morning leading up to this podcast because you look great. For anybody watching the video, your hair is done, you look fantastic, you look healthy, your skin is glowing, so tell me what you did. Was it the raw liver smoothie, the coffee enema, the red lights, and various orifices or?

Erica:  I mean, I don’t know if you want to start?

Isaac:  Well, I’ll be transparent. I’ve been expressing a little bit of health because I’ve been traveling. I just got back from Tokyo, Japan, and my body just took a little bit of hit from some of the ways I’ve been pushing it lately. So, if I could share maybe what I do traditionally, today I just let my body sleep in and then I–

Ben:  That’s okay. You can pick the perfect day, Isaac. That’s all right.

Isaac:  Just got to be real. But yeah, Erica and I have great routine. And, typically when I wake up in the morning, I get up and go to the washroom and then I put on the DAB, which is Daily Audio Bible and I listen to Scripture while I’m brushing my teeth. I wash my face while I’m naked in front of a red light, Joovv light and then I go into my closet. I’ve got a vision board there. I will either kind of intend the day or premeditate what I’m going to create in the day. I’ve been off and on doing the five-minute journal. I may do the five-minute journal. And, I’ll typically do some sort of short meditation or depending on how much time I have, longer meditation and then I’ll kind of pre-create what the day will look like in my mind’s eye. And then, I’ll go downstairs and start making breakfast for the kids. Like this morning, I made some really great bacon, eggs, some hot sauce. Yeah. So, that’s what I do this morning–

Ben:  You’d be popular in the Greenfield house. My sons eat bacon and eggs. I think this morning was a Dutch baby.

Erica:  Oh, nice.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Ben:  Which is not a literal human Dutch baby, but it’s some kind of an egg contraption in a pan that they make.

Erica:  Oh, dude.

Ben:  So, you’re doing all of this on a typical morning. So Isaac, are you carving out time when you first get up then to kind of connect to God, listen to the Bible, care for self before the rest of the family is up, or is the family all tooling around doing their own things while you’re prepping for the day?

Isaac:  No, no. I like to prep myself and get myself dialed before normally the kids and everyone is up. But, the kids are getting up earlier and earlier now, so I find them downstairs. This morning, it was raining outside. I come downstairs and I’m like, “Oh, everyone’s still in bed.” I look outside and they’re outside running around in the rain. So, they’re playing out in the rain all soaked, which is funny. But, that’s not typical but they’ll be up and drawing and reading and doing other things even before we’re up, sometimes. But, what about you, babe?

Erica:  I mean, I don’t I don’t have the luxury of a long meditation and all this in the morning, so I just try to stack my night routine so that I get my best sleep because when I get up, I got to hit the ground running with the kids. So, I put a lot of emphasis on the night before. So, last night we did the sauna, we did a shower after that. Most nights, I’m doing something relaxing. I’m in a bubble bath. I’m stretching. I’m doing everything I can. I do it every night.

Ben:  I assume that that’s after the kids go to bed you light up the bath.

Isaac:  Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah.

Erica:  Yeah. We do that after the kids go to bed. I’ll read my Bible before bed. So, my night routine is really dialed and that gets me the deep sleep I need so that when I get up in the morning I’m ready to go with the children.

Isaac:  You stretch regularly.

Erica:  Yeah.

Isaac:  You do essential oil breathing. And then, another thing we do before bed is the myofascial work.

Erica:  Yeah, chiropractic.

Ben:  What’s the myofascial work? Well, I should have mentioned, by the way, to folks, you’re a pretty talented chiropractic doc and know your way around the body pretty well. So, you’re doing the myofascial work every night with Erica?

Erica:  Every night we do it.

Ben:  What’s that look like?

Erica:  He rolls out. I wish I had one in here. It’s like this, but the big rollers, you roll your muscles.

Ben:  Okay.

Erica:  You roll them on that.

Ben:  Oh, yeah. Yeah, you just held up like a small foam rolling type of device that you’re applying to her body.

Isaac:  Yeah. 

Erica:  Well, he mostly rolls.

Isaac:  We roll on these different lacrosse ball or a myofascial kind of roller. If I need to get a trigger point, then I’ll use the back number two. It breaks down. You can put in your suitcase for when you’re traveling, but it’s just a little thing that you can get certain trigger points in your back or your legs or something like that.

Erica:  Rapid release we use as well.

Isaac:  Yeah, Erica and I compete against each other on our Oura Ring at night, so I find that if I myofascial release and do some deep breathing and I follow that nighttime routine that she’s dialed in really well that I usually get a lot more deep sleep and a lot more quality sleep. And, I’m always getting those crowns.

Ben:  This is interesting. So, after the kids have gone to bed, you guys are literally in the bedroom making love to foam rollers and lacrosse balls and all manner of medieval torture myofascial devices.

Isaac:  Dude, it actually feels amazing.

Erica:  Yeah.

Isaac:  And, I’ll be real, this girl is a systems-oriented person. When she’s gone traveling, things don’t go as well for my nighttime routine. I need her.

Ben:  Oh, I totally agree. My wife was just playing a tennis tournament over the weekend. I sleep horribly when my wife is gone. I’ll prop up a bunch of pillows to simulate the snuggling that I usually do with her just so I almost feel like I’ve got a human body to hold. I lay there staring at the ceiling because I don’t have anybody to talk to or pray with or any of the other normal things we do before we go to bed at night. So yeah, I get it. I depend on my wife heavily for my nighttime routine. And, similar to you guys, I’ve got this elaborate morning routine but for my wife, for her, because a lot of times she is sleeping in, prepping for the day with the sons in the morning, she does a lot more of her self-care in the evening like hot yoga and stretching and walking, things like that. So, it’s interesting how the schedule is parallel.

How did you guys actually meet and marry?

Isaac:  It’s a good question. I had a patient who lost 70 pounds and she just was peppering me to come to her church and she was like, “You don’t understand, it’s so amazing.” And, I looked at it on Waze and I was like so far away or I don’t know if the Waze existed at the time. So, it might have been Google Maps or something. But, I looked at it, it was an hour away from where we were. And so, she was persistent for three months. She loved me. I got great results with her as a patient, but in my functional medicine program but she just was begging me to come out to this church. So, I appeased her one Sunday and I was like, “Alright, I’m going to go to this church.” I go to the church. I sit at the back. I wave hello to Ellen. I’m like, “Hey, I made it.” And, I was going to slip out and then who do I sit next to but this guy named John who did the exact same thing that she did to me where he got my number and he just starts calling me up every single day and was like, “You need to come to this young professional’s ministry.” And so, I’m like, “What is it with these people from this church? It is crazy.” And eventually, I went to–

Ben:  What is this cult?

Isaac:  Exactly. It was a fun church. Really, really good multicultural church downtown Orlando where I was doing my residency. And, I went to this small group. And, I arrive at a small group and it was two dudes and 20 hot girls. And, Erica was leading the group and I was like, “This is amazing.” I’ll definitely drive two hours or however long I need to get here. But literally, when I walked through the door, I thought to myself, “I want to marry this girl.” And, as I heard her depth of wisdom and knowledge just around life around spirituality just how intelligent she was, I was like, “Alright, this girl,” I mean, “this is amazing.” And so, we became best friends after that. And, she was intimidating to me though because she worked for GlaxoSmithKline, which was one of the largest Pharma companies. And, I would do presentations about just how evil pharma companies are and how natural health is the way to go. And so, I actually tried to hire her at first and they were paying her too well that we couldn’t hire her, we couldn’t afford to hire her. We could but the doctors and I were like it’s a stretch. And so, anyways, I ended up marrying her instead and she ended up being the CEO of my company.

Ben:  So, you’re, you said, the CEO or the COO of Isaac’s company, Erica?

Erica:  I’m the integrator which would parallel it more to a COO, yeah.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Ben:  So, you guys run things, I assume, by saying integrator on the entrepreneurial optimization system? Gino Wickman’s book “Traction?”

Erica:  Yeah.

Isaac:  Exactly.

Ben:  That’s fantastic. Can you describe those people real quick, by the way, because the reason I ask that is because I’ve always thought that with a married couple that entrepreneurial optimization system could work really well if one person is the visionary and the other person has the desire to be in operations or the integrator. We don’t do that in terms of the Greenfield family and the way we operate because my wife absolutely hates business and numbers and operations and management. And, I’m a big visionary and so, if I hand things up to her, she’s the type of person when you turn on her phone, she’s got the 26 unlistened to voicemails and 100 text messages and everything’s got notifications that haven’t been looked at because she just doesn’t care about any of that stuff. So, for us, it wouldn’t work well. But for you, guys, describe how you integrate this entrepreneurial optimization? What’s it called? The EOS, Entrepreneurial Operation System. Is that what it’s called?

Isaac:  Yeah, Entrepreneurial Organizational System.

Ben:  Yeah, Organizational System. That’s right.

Erica:  I would say at the beginning of our relationship, I immediately saw he was very gifted with vision similar to you Ben, extremely influential, just has that woo factor, can build relationships quickly. And, I was, “Okay, I can take that vision and help him execute all the behind-the-scenes things that he’s naturally not inclined to do” like numbers and spreadsheets and systems and process. And, these are all things that I’m naturally very inclined to do. so, we saw that immediately when we got together, but I think at the beginning of our relationship in those first few years, we didn’t have enough appreciation for each other’s unique giftings so we would butt heads a lot over different things.

Isaac:  We didn’t have the rocket fuel understanding of what an integrator visionary was. So, my visionary mind would literally hit her integrator kind of let’s slow down and create a system mind and it was challenging, honestly. But, it was good because she built the foundation for what later became a multi-million dollar enterprise. But now, we’re kind of coming back into this fold where she has a full understanding of what a visionary does. She’s actually a really gifted integrator like her inner spirit child is like a spreadsheet. She loves numbers. She loves all of the details of all these different things, so it’s exciting to be able to come kind of full circle to a place where she’s like, “Wow, I can really add a lot of value to you and we can work together as an integrator visionary system.” And, that’s what Gino Wickman calls the rocket fuel that allows for companies to really grow rapidly. And so, do you want to just share what an integrator is compared to a visionary?

Erica:  So, I mean, integrator is someone that’s looking at operations, making sure the company is profitable, as a leadership team executing on what the vision is. Are people held accountable? Are the systems and processes in place for the team to succeed and excel? And, are we sticking to the business plan that we’ve laid out so that we can grow that the visionaries laid out so that we can grow? So, I think all of that combined with us growing and maturing in our marriage, we’re going on 13 years this year, we now have a different level of respect for each other around our unique giftings that allows us to come to the business relationship differently than we did before because we would just get mad at each other before.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Ben:  Yeah, I actually wanted to ask you that because this is something my wife and I for a little while we were in the BenGreenfieldFitness Inner Circle, which was a membership website where people could access my wife’s cooking tips and meal plans and home advice and gardening tips, et cetera. And, I’d dish out the fitness and the nutrition advice and we had a monthly PDF and Inner Circle videos and everything. And, there’d be at least three or four nights of the week or various points throughout the day where we would fight. It was mostly like, “Babe, did you get this email or this task done?” And, she’d be like, “Wait, what email? What task?” “Oh, you mean that thing you told me five weeks ago?” “No, I was going to get to that at some point. Thank you for reminding me.” And, we just fight and fight about this stuff. And eventually, I realized the heartache involved at least for us being married and in business together wasn’t worth it. But, for you guys, do you actually have conflicts? And, if so, how do you resolve those?

Isaac:  Oh, yeah. I mean, we don’t as much anymore but I mean some of the conflicts that we’ve had have been a lack of understanding of each other’s gifts. And, I think the more that we’ve dug deep into personality assessments and the Kolbe analysis, K-O-L-B-E, to understand that I’m a quick start. I like to start things fast. I’m a visionary. I like to think big. I’m creative. I like to live in the clouds. And, her fact-finder score is high, her follow-through score is really high. And, those are things that she really values, and like she loves research and things of that nature. And, I like to just make things happen, move things along, but if we don’t understand how each other works, there’s actually a book on this called, “The Synergist” where it helps you understand that in order to be a synergist and you have to understand how other people operate. And, how other people operate is understanding their assessments of who they are as an operator processor or visionary. And so, she being more of an operator and processor and me being more of a visionary, we would just never really understand each other but then the more I understood Erica, the more I was like, “Wow, she’s genius and she has so much to offer” and vice versa, hopefully.

Erica:  And, also that I could save his butt on stuff.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Ben:  Yeah.

Erica:  So, we have different gifts and so we’ve learned to defer to the one that’s stronger like God’s brilliant and how he brings people together that complement each other really well. So, I’ve learned to defer to him when it comes to vision direction, what’s the next revenue idea because he’s amazing at that. And, he knows to defer to me when it comes to financial discernment, how are we doing financially, what choices do we need to make around that. So, we didn’t have that understanding or respect for each other before, so we were kind of stepping on each other’s toes. But, with growth and maturity, I think we’ve recognized that now. So, I kind of stay in my lane and let him fly and he does the same and it’s working much better.

Ben:  I’m going to have to note this book called “The Synergist” by the way. I hadn’t heard of it before. Obviously, all of Gino Wickman’s books that you referred to like “Rocket Fuel” and “Traction” in this entire entrepreneurial operation system or organizational system is something that I’ve been familiar with for a long time. And, I’ll include resources for that in the shownotes. By the way, for anybody listening in, if you go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/JonesFamily, I’ll put them in there. But, I run my entire enterprise, Ben Greenfield Life off the EOS system. We run Kion off the EOS system where we have identified who are the visionaries, who’s going to be the person who has that big vision picture for the company, and then who in operations can manage that typically with a CEO/visionary role dropping down to a COO role. And then, that kind of bleeds into each of the business divisions underneath each of those roles. And, it’s just a fantastic way to run the company, but you guys are right in the same way that I think a family needs to know each other family members’ love language and even personality profiles, similar to you guys, our entire family has done Enneagram. We all know how each other operate what communication style works best, what love language works best. We do that with the entire company as well because I think Gino Wickman gets into this in EOS. You got to have the right butts in the right seats on the bus; Otherwise, people are plugged into roles that despite them perhaps being fantastic individuals, they’re not going to thrive in because they’re essentially doing things they’re really not wired up to do.

Erica:  Right.

Isaac:  Yeah, absolutely. No, it’s brilliant. Yeah, and Erica is an achiever. I’m an achiever in the Enneagram, but I think the last time I took it I was more of enthusiast. So, I mean, there’s synergy but there’s also a lot of differences. And, what I’ll say is that if I got into litigation that it was an $18-million litigation, I was thinking back, I’m like, “Dang, if I just had Erica review a few things, I literally would have saved the entire–” it would have saved the entire process last year. And, I mean that’s just the beauty of leaning on people that are more genius than you are in certain areas. Just understanding each other’s strengths as parents, understanding each other’s strengths as entrepreneurs, as spouses. It’s a game changer when you start leaning on each other in the right way.

Ben:  Do you guys make your kids a part of the business in any way just to foster entrepreneurship or anything else or to get cheap labor?

Isaac:  We bring them into conversations like I share with them a lot of the opportunities, the goals. We have them come up on stage and speak at events so that they can kind of see all the doctors that were helping transform their businesses and practices.

Erica:  They definitely have the entrepreneur bug. Our kids are still pretty young. They’re 9, 7. One’s turning 5 Sunday and then the youngest is 2, but they have the entrepreneurial spirit in a way that–I mean, I was not even exposed to entrepreneurship at their age, so they’re constantly looking for ways to get paid. They’re constantly closing us.

Isaac:  They’re closing, they’re closers, man. They’re strong closers and they crush us. They’re little salesmen. I’m like, “Oh, why don’t I give them”–

Erica:  They are. It’s to the point where sometimes I’m like, look–

Ben:  Well, what’s that look like? Tell me about it. Give me an example.

Erica:  So, for anything, “Hey, Mommy, if I go outside and bring the garbage cans up from the street, will you give me a dollar?” or “Hey, Mommy, I made this cool drawing book of golf course maps that’s an aerial view and it took me two weeks to put this together, I’ll sell it to you for 20 bucks.” So, they’re like–

Isaac:  It took me three months.

Ben:  Correct the answer, “How about this, I’ll feed you dinner?”

Erica:  Exactly. So, we have that conversation where it’s like, “Hey, we’re a family so you don’t get paid for emptying the dishwasher. That’s just part of your job as a kid.” But, I do love that they’re so entrepreneurial. They’ll go door-to-door knocking to sell drawings they’ve made. I mean, they made 80 bucks–

Isaac:  Yeah, $120.

Erica:  Was it that much?

Isaac:  Yeah.

Erica:  In the neighborhood just selling drawings.

Isaac:  Yeah, they went and cold-called. And, I just sat back and watched them and they were like–and, this guy, everyone was giving them 20 bucks a pop. And, I was like, “$20 for the?” I was almost like, “Don’t give them that much money.” But, they were giving them 20 bucks for each drawing. And then, Justice goes to one person, the person goes to the door with a $5 and he’s just like, “No,” he pulls the drawing back, he’s like, “We’ve been getting $20 per house, each house.” He’s like, “You’re disrespecting my drawings.” This guy, he was dead serious. And, I was like, “Man, you can’t be saying that.” It was funny.

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I don’t know if I even shared this with you yet, but my sons and I just started our first company together. It’s called Fried Pickles Games. Actually, we got stuck in a staycation a few months ago. We were supposed to be on vacation and didn’t quite work out. We were supposed to fly to Costa Rica and my passport failed at Costa Rica Customs, so they literally sent us packing straight back to the U.S. We had a 27-hour track through New Jersey and my kids of course were heartbroken that they didn’t get to go spend the week on the beaches in Costa Rica like we had planned. But, we got home and so now we’ve got this whole week cleared with nothing to do, and so we were doing father-son date nights and staycation-oriented activities like dinner games and garage games and spring cleaning and all sorts of things. But, what happened was that they were also going through this book by Sun Tzu for their homeschooling called “The Art of War.” And, one of my sons when I took them out to dinner during this staycation, he said, “Dad, you know what’s really funny?” I’m like, “Well.” He’s like, “We should do a game that’s called “The Fart of War” and it’s like farts that battle against each other. And, we were just all laughing about it at first, but then we actually started to draw different fart characters on index cards like white index cards like the princess fart and the old man fart, and the celiac disease fart, which later got canned because we figured that wouldn’t be politically correct or could offend people who actually do have celiac disease. And then, you could make your part stronger or weaker. You could equip the week say typical two with a whey protein shake and some Indian food or you could make your opponent’s fart weaker with potpourri or peppermint oil. And then, there’s special cards you can mask how powerful your fart is with a blame-it-on-the-dog card or you could make yourself impervious to attack from other people’s fart with a gas mask.

So, long story short is we actually started a father-son gaming company called Fried Pickles Games. And, we’ve been working 20 hours a week moonlighting. And, our first game called The Fart of War is going to manufacturing next week. So, we’re actually launching on Kickstarter and everything. So, as they get older, especially if you’re an entrepreneur, they start to come up with these business ideas. And, I mean, I think this was inspired by James Altucher actually, you guys. He has this idea where every week, you sit down, you map out 10 new ideas. And, they’ve been doing that on their blog for years now. It’s a great way to just allow your kids to have this almost like a skunks works type of approach for their entrepreneurship and creativity and just generate idea after idea after idea and then step back and watch them thrive with which ideas feed their passions and their interests. So, for them, initially it was cooking. Their Go Greenfield’s Cooking Channel and now it’s Fried Pickles Gaming company. So, there you go. They want to send one to you guys to be a test family for play.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Erica:  Send us a test game, the boys will love it.

Isaac:  May kids will love it, yeah. Thank you.

Ben:  Okay. So, I want to delve a little bit into your chapter in “Boundless Parenting” where one thing that really left up to me was you guys have three main elements in your parenting approach that I thought it would be really cool to share on this podcast. So, tell me about the three main elements in your parenting approach.

Isaac:  Yeah, you can start.

Erica:  Yeah. So, I think the first, which is so foundational, is the spiritual component. We love Jesus. That is the whole reason why we’re here on the earth. And so, we bring that sense of purpose into everything we do with our kids and our families. So, our goal as their parents is to teach them how to have a personal relationship with God and to know the Lord for themselves. So, that permeates everything that we do. And, when that Foundation is set, that’s the springboard for everything else that is to come. So, that’s the first thing.

Ben:  I was going to ask you what that looks like as far as how you’re training your kids spiritually if it’s books or family devotions or things. From a practical standpoint, how do you teach the spiritual part?

Erica:  I mean, for us, it’s all throughout the day but a lot of the focus time is in the homeschool room. One of the things I love so much about homeschooling is that I can weave and we can weave the truth of who God is into every aspect of education whether we’re talking about science and how animals are created or we’re talking about nature and what’s outside. Even concepts around math and numbers, all of that was created by Him. So, in our homeschooling routine, I’m reading through the Bible with my kids. I’m asking them what did you get out of that. Did you hear anything that spoke to you? And, when we first started doing that, it was actually recommended to me by a curriculum that I use. And, I was kind of like, “Are they really going to get anything?” Like, “Are they going to get anything if I’m reading out of the Old Testament?” “Is anything going to really resonate with them because when we started this, they were 7 and 5?” But, the things that they would get, the things that they would pull out–

Isaac:  Were shocking.

Erica:  It would surprise me. It would surprise me. We were reading through Moses, the story of Moses this semester and we were reading through the different plagues and they were just kind of like, “This is crazy. Wouldn’t the pharaoh let the people go?” They were understanding, “Wow, God is really showing himself through all these supernatural things.” It’s foolish of him not to let the people go at this point. So, it was like they were picking it up. They were getting it. So, we read through the Bible. We talk about character from a Biblical perspective. That’s one of the things that Isaac and I, we really want to thrive home with the kids. We have a word of the week every week during the homeschool season. So, we’re talking about how to be attentive, what does it look like to really love, what does it look to show deference and to put someone else ahead of yourself. How can you be content with the moment?

Yeah, you didn’t get the toy because someone else is playing with it. Okay, this is an opportunity for you to show contentment. So, we weave all of that into the scripture. So, that’s just a couple of ways, but I’ll let you share it too whatever you think around the spiritual.

Isaac:  Yeah, I think another great element of spirituality is just watching their mom and dad and how we live our lives. She was a gospel singer in church growing up and she just got a beautiful voice. And so, the music that constantly permeates the house is such that they just are constantly listening to worship music or they’re listening to classical music or they’re listening to jazz, but there’s really good healthy quality music and spiritual messages that are regularly just permeating the house throughout the day.

Ben:  I’m so glad you brought that up. By the way, music is such a great delivery mechanism. Not only for things like our family does a lot of memorization of scripture, for example, and we’ll do a lot of that via praise and worship music or we have something called the psalter where you can sing your way through the Psalms. But, I’m very intentional with the music component for our family, which it sounds like you guys are also. When I wake up in the morning, one of the first things I do is start up the essential oil diffuser, burn some incense, and then I’ll put on a soaking worship music channel, which is real peaceful worship music. So, when the boys wake, the house already has kind of this holy reverent peaceful feel to it. And then, as the day progresses, that music can become more uplifting stuff on a Hillsong or Elevation Worship or more popular Christian Gospel or something like that to kind of keep the mood elevated. And, sometimes in the evening it goes all the way back to classic country and things like that. And then, we kind of wind up the day with more spiritual songs I play them on the guitar. But, if you’re a parent listening in, you can really use music in a powerful way to enhance your children’s life and introduce whatever emotion that you want to introduce into the home you can do so via the carrier of music. So, I’m glad you guys brought that up.

Erica:  Yeah. And, I am too, I’m glad you mentioned just how you bring music into the entire day because we really love to do that and I’ve often found especially when Isaac’s traveling and especially when the kids can kind of be at each other. And, there can be a level of stress in the home putting on music that, especially the worship music, honestly it brings in the presence of God into the house. And, I start singing it, the kids will start singing it. Sometimes I’ll put on Kirk Franklin and we’ll be dancing and jamming in the kitchen to know gospel music back from my childhood. And, it changes the dynamic of the home. So, I’m a music person period, but I totally agree with you on the ability of it to change the atmosphere.

Ben:  Oh, yeah, absolutely. As a matter of fact, we do family devotions which it sounds like you guys have some element of that as well.

Erica:  Yeah.

Ben:  But, at least once a week instead of devotions, I put on some amazing beautiful worship song usually a six to eight-minute song, and we just basically dance and sway and hug and snuggle and just listen to a song together. It’s a fantastic way to start the day. Sometimes a little more uplifting will literally have a dance party around the kitchen table. But more often than not, it’s just sway your hands, close your eyes, soak up the music, and start the day that way.

Erica:  Yeah.

Isaac:  It’s the best way to possibly start a day. It really is.

Ben:  Oh, I was going to say it’s that one main element is spirituality. And, by the way, I’ll address the elephant in the room. I know that Erica has to go. What would you say around 10 minutes or so from now?

Erica:  I got about 10 minutes with you.

Ben:  Okay, alright. So, I want to make sure. Let’s tackle these other two elements. If you’re listening, we’re not going to end this podcast in 10 minutes. Isaac and I got a lot to talk about. But, while you guys are both here, let’s get into these other two main elements of your parenting approach in addition to spirituality.

Erica:  Yeah. So, this the second one would be the physical. And, that’s really around everything that we believe around health, wellness, holistic living. We are teaching our children to live on purpose when it comes to their health. And so, they almost to a fault sometimes are so heavily focused on what’s natural, what’s good for the body. It was funny because our last nanny, they were criticizing her lunch. She would come in. She would bring her lunch and they were like, “Oh, that’s toxic. Why are you eating that?” So, we had to be like–

Ben:  Canola oil.

Erica:  Yes. We’re like, “Not everybody eats like us.” I mean, Isaac really has pioneered that and brought me into that at the beginning of the relationship, but I’ll let you share a little bit more around the physical, the health.

Isaac:  Yeah. Well, Erica has done a great job with systematizing meals like they always asked what we’re going to have for breakfast or whatever it might be. And so, we just have a schedule for breakfast now. It’s bacon and eggs. It’s avocado bowl. It’s a smoothie. We have a whole system down that rotates different types of meals throughout the day–

Ben:  That’s interesting, actually. So, you guys don’t spitball in the morning. Is it posted somewhere with the meal schedule for the week is going to be?

Erica:  It is literally posted.

Isaac:  It’s posted.

Erica:  Because they were fighting. Because we have four, right? So, they were fighting every morning about what breakfast was. They’re all foodies. They all like to eat. It was a brawl.

Isaac:  Yeah. So, we’re just going to end this once and for all and we’re going to have what we’re doing Monday through Sunday and there’s no questions. And, it just literally–

Ben:  You do this for lunches and dinners also?

Erica:  I changed that up each week, but I meal plan every week like clockwork. But, we rotate through similar things, yeah.

Isaac:  Yeah, yeah. They still ask what they’re eating for lunch and dinner–

Erica:  Yeah, [00:50:35] ____.

Ben:  The kids are part of the meal preparation process in terms of teaching them how to cook or things like that?

Erica:  Yes.

Isaac:  Yeah, they do.

Erica:  They love it. They all love to help in the kitchen. Even the two-year-old, I mean she’ll mix things in the bowl. She has a ladder that she likes to stand on and help me prep things. That’s some of the most special time with my kids is when we’re all standing around the mixing bowl in the kitchen and getting a meal ready.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Erica:  It’s a lot of fun.

Isaac:  And, they made us breakfast the other day too.

Erica:  Yeah.

Isaac:  They’ll go and mix stuff in the Vitamix and whatnot.

Erica:  I would say two for–

Ben:  I tell you what, that’s so perfect by the way that you’re incorporating them at this age because we did the same. They just get to put the pinch of salt in here or follow along with the cookbook and put this measurement into the measuring cup.

Erica:  Yeah.

Ben:  And then, I remember the very first meals. I took out Tim Ferris’s “The 4-Hour Chef,” which is a great book in general just for the process of learning and I showed them the scrambled eggs algorithm in that book. Here’s how to make scrambled eggs that are Indian or Moroccan or Japanese or whatever. And so, our sons literally learned to cook doing 20 different variations of scrambled eggs every morning.

Erica:  Wow.

Isaac:  That is amazing.

Erica:  That’s awesome. Yeah.

The last thing I would say too around the physical is we’re a really active family. So, now that it’s spring, it’s warming up, we’re going to be outside bike riding together. My boys are outside all the time. They like to play in the dirt. They like to golf. They were doing flag football. They like to be in the woods, on trails. I mean, we’re going to Vail in a few weeks just to be in the outdoors and experience that. So, that’s one thing that I love about our family dynamic is we have a sense of adventure and we love being outside. Yeah, it’s fun.

Isaac:  Yeah, yeah. And, one thing that we have a culture of in the house is just, I don’t know what it is, it’s like running, wrestling.

Erica:  Oh, yeah.

Isaac:  Like roughing each other up a little bit but in a way that we try not to draw blood. But, it usually doesn’t work all the time but it’s fun and we just love it yeah.

Ben:  Yeah, I hear you. That’s why I send my son to jiu-jitsu three times a week so they can get that tussling out of their system and learn responsible rough play. I assign my son’s workouts. I email them on Sunday night a list of workout menus that they could choose from throughout the week and they got to put a little X on the refrigerator where the workouts are hanging that they completed it for that day or for that week. Do you guys ever formally structure workouts or anything like that or is all just kind of fun and creative play at this point?

Isaac:  At this point, I’d say–

Erica:  It’s mostly creative play.

Isaac:  What I will say though is interesting is they’ll come and work out with me. So, in my structured workouts, I’ll just get them different types of exercise tools that aren’t as heavy as what I’m using. But yeah, they’ve been really enjoying working out with me like you saw Justice the other day.

Erica:  He was doing push-ups in the kitchen.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Erica:  I was like, “Alright.”

Isaac:  Yeah. But, we haven’t gotten to the point where we structured actual workouts just yet. I dream actually of doing that. I use the Neubie from NeuFit and I’m just like, “Dang, whatever they want to get into, I’m going to be able to really”– 

Ben:  And, just strapping electrodes to your kids here in a year or so and shocking them and seeing what the neighbors think. So, you know what, before Erica has to take off, tell me about the third element.

Erica:  It’s the emotional. So, it’s really important. I just do this by asking them how they’re doing. Sometimes kids are just like adults, they have good days and they have difficult days. So, for me, when I come into the homeschool room with them because we are usually schooling four out of five weekdays, I’ll just ask them how they’re doing, “How are you guys? How’s your heart? Are you okay? Are you having a good day today? And, most of the time, they’re fine, but sometimes they’re like, “No, I’m upset because Isaac did this or whatever.” And, we’ll talk through it, we’ll bring the other person in if they need to, but I’m just having the awareness as a parent of how they’re doing emotionally is really important to us. We treat our kids like they’re human beings. Some people treat kids like they’re less than human beings but we don’t have that in our house. And so, we really prioritize their emotional health as well.

Isaac:  One element of that is that we’ve seen parenting where it’s very dictatorial and we try to create an environment where they’re able to communicate to us freely around their emotions.

Erica:  With respect.

Isaac:  With respect, exactly. And so, it’s really created an opening for just amazing conversation. And, when you buy the “Boundless Parenting” book, one of the things that you sent with us is conversation cards and we ask really great questions. But, those conversation card questions and a lot of the questions that are inside the “Boundless Parenting” book are, if anybody hasn’t bought that book, anybody who’s a parent needs to read through it.

Ben:  Thank you for doing my shameless plug for me.

Isaac:  Yeah. I mean, it’s so good. It’s just so good. And, there’s just so many great questions to ask, but it just allows for us to just really be in a beautiful communication with our family and just allows for us to have a good ebb and flow emotionally with them as well.

Ben:  With four kids in a busy household, and I asked this because I found kids interact with you far differently one-on-one than when it’s two parents on one child or one parent with multiple children or any mix thereof. Those one-on-one times and the digging into where a child’s at emotionally, a lot of times I’ll do through a calendar one-on-one date with each of my children once per month. But, in terms of the comings and goings in your house, how do you actually treat that idea of getting a child alone to actually address their specific emotions? Do you systematically do that or is it just organically happen throughout the day?

Erica:  We have to grab those moments when we can. Sometimes, we’ll do formal dates. Isaac is amazing at that. Taking them out for a smoothie or something on a one-on-one date. For me, I’m more kind of stealing away 15 minutes while maybe everybody’s outside and one of them is inside. Or, I school my kids. We have group time, but I school them one-on-one as well. So, I’ll use that time as well to really check in and connect with them. And, sometimes I’ll take them out on dates. I don’t have as much freedom around that, but when I can, I’ll do that. And so, I just kind of build it in when I can, but we agree with you that the one-on-one is really important, especially for us having so many children, four children, where they’re all kind of vying for the attention of mom and dad at any given time and usually the younger two are winning out. It’s important to make sure to carve that space. And, I will say to that informs the priority as well. So, for me, I can see this one hasn’t had as much time and space with mom and dad. So, you kind of look at that too in terms of how to prioritize that one-on-one connection.

Isaac:  Yeah. And, I feel like we actually see if there’s one child that has gotten less one-on-one connection, they start acting up unconsciously. So, if we proactively are investing time with them, t just makes a big difference. And, my son when I came back from my last trip, I was speaking at a big doctors event with 1,200 doctors present. I come back and they always ask what I’m bringing back for them. So, I brought these organic chocolates back and I didn’t realize that my son ate–I told him he could have a piece but he ate the entire bar. And, he was feeling really sick afterwards after he had gone to sleep and he woke me up while we were in bed at 2 o’clock in the morning, he’s like, “My tummy hurts.” I’m like, “How much chocolate did you eat?” He’s like, “I ate the whole thing.” I’m like, “Oh, my gosh.” So, I spent a good 30 minutes with him supporting him and then he didn’t throw up or anything like that, but he was just not feeling the best. And so, I just scratched his back in bed and then I ended up falling to sleep next to him in bed.

When he woke up in the morning and saw me in the morning, he just melted. He’s like, “Dad, you really helped me last night. Thank you so much.” And, I was like, man, this is probably more powerful than one-on-one time was just how I showed up for him last night and just supporting him. So, little moments, capturing little moments like that, I think, are really important, and Erica does a really good job with that.

Ben:  Alright, folks. So, opening the kimono. Erica had to boogie and Isaac and I both took our pee. So now, we’re here and not clinching. So, not clinching.

What’d you have for breakfast, by the way, Isaac? Are you one of those–

Isaac:  Well, this morning we had just straight bacon and eggs. And, it was keto, so I did healthy fats. I put grass-fed butter on it. I throw on a little bit of olive oil and then I had some just really good bacon and egg. And, I had just chopped it all up, put some nice herbs on it and sea salt and it was delicious and hot sauce.

Ben:  I had a Spacemilk smoothie.

Isaac:  Oh, nice. What is that?

Ben:  So, two weeks ago, one of my buddies texted me, he’s like, have you seen this stuff? And, he sent me this link to was like spacemilk.com and I’m like, “Oh, here we go another unhealthy Soylent green chock full of franken fuels and chemicals.” And, it’s fermented plants that they’ve managed to design in a way that creates all the essential amino acids. And, I got this big silver canister of it two days ago. So, this morning, I’m like, “Alright, here we go. I could get an explosive diarrhea during the podcast, but I’m going to give this a go anyways.” So, I made myself a smoothie with a giant heaping scoop of this Spacemilk stuff. And, I still put ice and stevia, a little bit bone broth, and blended it up. It was actually surprisingly good.

So, Spacemilk is not a sponsor of this episode. Maybe they should be now, but yeah, so they have a Spacemilk. It’s the new frontier of sustainable protein that’s neither vegan nor animal but it’s just fermented plants.

Isaac:  Wow, the future of protein. I’m seeing it right here. That’s very–

Ben:  In 45 minutes, I’m not dead yet.

Okay. So, where we’re at right now is your guy’s three main elements. You got the spiritual. So, your prioritizing ensuring that your children have a connection with God at the beginning of the day and throughout the day. You have the physical, meaning that you’re ensuring that your kids move, they get out in nature, they see you working out because more is caught than taught, which a lot of parents in the books tend to repeat over and over again. And, they’re welcome to join you in almost many versions of your workouts. And then, finally, you have the emotional component, meaning that you understand your child’s love language, your child’s–it sounds even like their personality score and your dialogue with your child and pay attention to their emotions in the moment. And, that’s just something that you have on your radar throughout the day. Does that kind of sum up these three main elements?

Isaac:  Yeah, yeah, absolutely. One thing I feel a lot of parents need to know that is a game changer is eye contact. When you’re talking to a child by giving them eye contact versus doing whatever you’re doing and not really giving them eye contact while you’re working, I mean, it’s just a game changer. They listen more. They feel more connected to you. I know that the psychological elements of eye contact are very powerful. So, that’s just one little element that I’d add in there.

Ben:  I’m glad you brought that up. I realized that I was doing a poor job of that when my kids were 7 or 8 and family tennis is a big thing that we do where mom and I will play the boys or we’ll partner up for something like mixed doubles. And, I notice when we do our handshaking, at the end, my sons weren’t doing a very good job looking at me in the eyes. So, I started paying attention to it and then I noticed when I take them out to group events where I taught them how to give people they met a firm handshake that they kind of averted eye contact. And, I thought, “Gosh, this is already happening. My kids, like many humans, are not using these windows to the soul in the way that they should as far as deeply connecting with another human.” 

So, what I began to do was about anywhere from one to four times a month for a bedtime routine, I’ll put on a song about a four to six-minute long, lyric-free song, an instrumental, and Mom will be with one of the boys, I’m with the other. If you have more children than two, you’ll just need to kind of rotate accordingly. And, all we do is stare into each other’s eyes for four to six minutes. We stroke each other’s hair or faces or say lovey words like “I love you,” “I’m so proud of you,” “what was the best part of your day.” But, it’s all with really deep intense almost creepy eye contact. And, I found that has made them, just doing it with their parents has made them far more comfortable looking into another human being’s eyes in a very deep way and not making that seem awkward.

Isaac:  That is awesome. Yeah, I do it through staring contests. I’m like, hey, look, I’ve been giving them eye contact for a little while and then it’s just a fun game where we’re just, “Alright, staring contest” and then we’ll do that. But, I love that element of doing that with music and affirming them at the same time. That just takes it to a new level. That’s awesome.

Ben:  I mentioned it but I don’t want to won’t put words in your mouth, are you guys actually using the love languages in terms of knowing your child love language and addressing them accordingly? Can you tell people about that?

Isaac:  Totally, yeah. So, we know that there’s children in our household that have words of affirmation as their primary physical touches, their primary time spent, is their primary gifting, is maybe secondary for some. But, it’s very important to understand what your child’s love language is if it’s acts of service, time spent, physical touch, words of affirmation, and the last one I mentioned earlier. But, what’s powerful is that when you understand their personalities, my son, Isaac is similar to Erica where he’s a processor, he’s more melancholy. And so, I’ll tell him to toughen up or something like that. And, at first, he’ll go internal like Erica does emotionally. And, I’m like, “What’s happening?” And, you give Erica five minutes just to process whatever is going on, and emotionally she’s fine and then she’s good. My son, Justice, is or excuse me, Isaac is very similar to Erica, and that she needs that space. And then, when he comes back and he kind of processes things, he’s good. And, I’ve given him that space. I know that he needs a little bit of physical touch and time spent.

So, those are key elements of really understanding your child’s needs for fulfillment. And, I can tell you that they act out less when you understand what their love language is and you fulfill on them. They melt in many different ways. And, a lot of people come over to our house and they’re like, “You guys have the most perfect children.” “You guys, they just listen to you and they’re so well-behaved.” And, I’m just like, “We just care about understanding what our child needs. We’re not parents that just let ourselves get ran over by our children. We’ve got certain rules in the house that we abide by and we stick to them.” And then, we pour into their love languages and it makes a massive difference emotionally. Typically, some people, they’ll come over and they’ll tell their kid to do something, kid won’t do it, and then we’ll tell our kid to do something and they’ll do it right away, they’re like, “How do you get your kids to do that?” It’s a holistic answer to that. There’s not just one answer. I think, it’s almost everything we do. You know what I’m saying?

Ben:  And, there are online questionnaires that your entire family could fill in. I forget the URL. I’ll hunt down a couple URLs and put them in the shownotes, but there are there are specific surveys that allow you to pretty easily that are even kid-friendly identify the love languages for each member of the family. And, we found that to be really, really good for our family. I know if my son River is down, it’s not about me having a long chat with him, it’s not about me giving him a gift to make him feel better, he’s totally physical touch. That’s his love language. So, he just needs snuggling time. He needs to be held, caressed, touched, hugged. My wife is quality time. If she’s down, she needs me to, much to my chagrin, sit out on the patio for 45 minutes drinking a glass of wine and talking when every bone in my body just hates to sit out in the patio and drink a glass of wine doing nothing but talking. But, I know that’s her love language. And so, if I give her a big hug or I give her a gift, that doesn’t do it for her. She needs time. That’s why we do the regularly scheduled date nights.

And then, what’s your love language, Isaac?

Isaac:  My number one is words of affirmation. Number two is physical touch.

Ben:  Okay.

Isaac:  So, this is the mistake I think a lot of people make is they give what their love language is, and so that’s what I would give to Erica was words of affirmation, physical touch. When Jess and Erica are the same and where it’s like Erica’s is time spent and acts of service, she wants me to do the dishes and vacuum and unclog the poopy toilet or whatever, you know what I’m saying?

Ben:  Or, at least find somebody to do it. Yeah, it’s interesting. I think you and I are wired up similarly. Not only is visionaries, crappy operators but good visionaries for a company. My love language is also words of affirmation.

Isaac:  Yeah.

Ben:  The perfect example is I had a really hard day work yesterday. It was just long and hard. You know how it goes, just stuff pops up and putting out more fires and usually do, I get to the end of the day and I tell my wife it was really, really hard day. And, we’ve been married for 22 years, dude. And, it’s taken probably up until two years ago to where she knows exactly what to do. We probably did the love language study and survey maybe six years ago, but she gives me a big hug and she says, “I see how hard you’re working. Thank you so much for taking care of our family for providing for us.” And, that’s it. That’s literally a 20-second exchange and I say, “Thank you, babe. That meant so much to me.” And, that’s all I need is just someone to tell me that they see me, that they appreciate what I’m doing, and then I’m good. I don’t need a gift. I don’t need time. I don’t need a hug. I don’t need a back massage. None of that.

Isaac:  Totally.

Ben:  So, it’s really important because sometimes I think we as men and women and parents and wives and husbands, we get frustrated because we feel our partner doesn’t get us or see us or treat us the right way when we’re stressed. But sometimes, they just don’t know and you also don’t know. You’re like, “Gosh, I think my wife and I should just go on a date and hash this out when in fact it could literally be a 30-second conversation of her being reminded to tell you that you need to hear how hard you’re working and somebody’s seeing it.”

Isaac:  Totally. Yeah, that’s so powerful. And, I think even when you go into seasons where your wife just gives birth and she’s feeling that just, man, I’m giving so much to this baby, there’s just an awareness of, hey, look, for a season, maybe all your needs aren’t being met, a physical touch of making love of all these different things that you feel you need and just having that awareness of okay, well, what else can I do while she’s breastfeeding and kind of recovering from labor to get out there and get out to jujitsu, wrestling with my guy friends or go out and play around golf or basketball? Just getting creative with it because if we’re not aware, then it just starts to feel we’re just being deprived and a bunch of things that, at least for me in the past, early on before I really had an awareness of it, I was just like, “She’s so selfish.” I’m like, “No, she’s breastfeeding, she just had a baby.” There’s other ways that you can kind of figure things out.

And obviously, as she’s learned, she’s also poured into me in ways that that I need and want and desire. And, I think the ultimate trump card, and this is where I saw with Erica is as she grew her personal relationship with God, she just went into this deep growth phase on her own of reading books and praying and just being alone with God and going out in nature. And, it was like I was inspired and it elevated her to have this elevated level of peace, joy, happiness. She was singing more. She’s just in this flow state on a regular basis. I’m like, “What is happening to my wife?” And, it truly does trump the love languages in a way because you’re just constantly an overflow in abundance and it inspired me to do that. And naturally, you just get all your love languages met because God’s giving it to you but your wife and your spouse, I’m giving it to her, and it’s just this beautiful synergy.

Ben:  I’ve taken a lot of inspiration from my wife in the same way Isaac. She has this morning practice I’m nearly envious of because I don’t have as much time as she does sometimes in the morning to do this. But, for one to two hours, she is sitting in the bedroom with earplugs on. Once the kids have had their breakfast and they’re off doing their things and she’s reading the Bible, she’s praying, she’s typically reading through some kind of a devotional and she’ll literally be locked in the room. I’ll walk up to the bedroom because I have a home office. I’m like, “Geez, you’re still in here” and go out and get some things done and come back up and maybe grab something. Left up next to the bed, she’s just sitting there looking out the window praying. You can see her lips moving. And, sometimes she can’t hear me because the earplugs are in. 

But, what’s interesting, this is kind of, I suppose kind of a raw and transparent thing to talk about but she started doing that during the time when I wasn’t really there for her fully present as a father and as a husband. You and I travel a ton for business. I know that you’re a road warrior and kind of a dragon slayer also, but there was a period of years, probably eight years, where my travel was not just travel, it was escapism from being a good father and husband. My wife would go to church on her own with the boys and I just wouldn’t be there or else I’d be home but I wouldn’t go to church because I was just recovering from travel. I was not devoted to God at all. This was all the way up until probably nine years ago. Even though I said I was a Christian, I wasn’t praying, I wasn’t reading the Bible, I wasn’t steeped in scripture or memorization or meditation or anything like that. I was not a faithful husband, so I was with other women. And so, it got to the point where my wife was just on her knees every day praying for me and praying for God who was kind of being the father that I should have been. I’ll never replace God, but she had to turn to God in a really big way. And, through thick and thin, she stuck through. I mean, we almost got divorced and split up the family and it was horrific.

And, a big, big part of getting us through that was her devotion to God. Me seeing her turn to prayer and time with God to get through that and then me saying that’s what I needed to do to be the man that God had called me to be and to repent of my sins and to step up to the plate as a father and as a husband. And so, now on the notes app on my phone, I have a daily prayer. Meaning, I literally have a written prayer that I say the same thing every single day. It’s a 10-minute-long prayer and then I have my scripture time and my prayer time. And then, about an hour and a half later, I go upstairs when the family’s all up and we gather in the living room for family meditation prayer because I don’t want the same thing to happen to my sons, right? I don’t want them to just have dad invisible down in the basement, I want them to be praying with me, reading with me and so that we have our big devotional time together. And then, after that, my wife goes up and does her own thing. 

But, if you were to come to our house in the morning, people would be like, “Dude, what kind of” back to the cult thing, “what kind of cult is this? These people are just obsessed with God all morning.” But dude, it’s a game-changer. It’s, in my opinion, the only way to really truly be fulfilled and get through life and make it through trials and tribulations without imploding like most families do when things like this happen. And, it was God that got us through it all back to your wife’s practice. It was namely my wife, her commitment to God, her inspiring me to do that, and then me eventually by the grace of God repenting in my stupid ways and coming back around.

Isaac:  Dude, wow. Thank you for sharing that. What transparency and it’s interesting how we high-achieving men I think have similar temptations and it’s truly by the grace of God. I’ve had multiple times where I’m like, “How is this relationship even going to work?” Divorce was at the front of my mind many times in the relationship.

Ben:  It’s the easy way out.

Isaac:  Yeah, it’s the easy way out, and all the things that we’ve discussed on this podcast, that’s where you double down. And, honestly, when I look back on our most challenging times where we’ve had to go to counseling or we’ve had to really take some time to think about what I said or did or what she said or did or whatever it might be, it’s mostly me actually when I think about it. And, it’s me being selfish. I don’t think about it at the time, but it’s really just selfishness. What it’s come down to is massive growth for both of us. When you’re committed to growth as a couple and you’re committed to just seeing the best in each other, which is one of the marital books that we had read together, it was just seeing the argue, holding up the other person your mind’s eye to give them the benefit of the doubt that they’re good person inside. And oftentimes, I would think, “No, she’s not giving me enough physical touch,” or “She’s not giving me enough words of affirmation,” or “She knows my love languages, she should give these to me regularly,” and she should set a timer or whatever.

Literally, these are some thoughts that I’ve had in the past and it’s literally those challenges or blow-ups that we’ve had in the past have literally been some of the greatest opportunities for growth. And, where we are right now is because we committed to each other through those times. Even though they are rough and it maybe took a few months or several months to get through some of the challenges like our marriage is, we’re going on 13 years this year not 22 like you, dude. You look like you’re 22 right now. You look like you’re a high school punk, man.

Ben:  That’s a biohacking, dude. There’s something to be said for the biohacking. I really don’t care as much about the way I look, but dude, I feel like I’m 18. Life’s pretty amazing from a physical standpoint. Right now, I’m with peptides or the stem cells, the red lights or the cold plunges, or all the above. But yeah, it feels amazing.

But, back to what you’re describing. I think it comes down to blame in many cases. If you read David Hawkins’ book on healing and frequency in the different vibratory levels of the different emotions that we can display, blame is a very, very low-frequency emotion. And, I think that creeps into families because you’re a bunch of humans in close proximity. “Gosh, she didn’t do the dishwasher. She drank all the coffee. Why didn’t my son clean up? What’s wrong with my son? It’s not me as a father, something’s wrong with this kid. He’s got ADD or he’s just a born liar. And, why won’t my wife do this or that?” And, it’s very easy to just spread the blame around. And, there’s a great book by this, I think everybody should read it, every couple should read at least by Jim Wilson called “How to Be Free of Bitterness.” And, I think that blame, blame, blame, blame, little bits of blame throughout the day lead to deep-rooted bitterness.

And, as you know Isaac, because you’re trained in medicine, in Chinese traditional medicine, bitterness is associated with cancer and with osteoporosis. In the Bible, anger unrepented of or deep-seated long chronic anger and the bitterness that is essentially synonymous with that is literally throughout the Book of Proverbs and elsewhere described as something that destroys the bowels and destroys the bones and destroys the heart and the gut. And, there’s a direct physical correlation between this as well, but I think, for me, one really, really important thing has just been to be aware of that. And, anytime I feel my emotions bubbling up, think, “Okay, am I” as Jocko Willink might say, “taking extreme ownership over this as the father and as the leader of the home or am I just spreading this blame around, which is eventually just going to bubble up inside me and get stored and lead to what happens to many, many families.” Divorce, have splits, anger issues, and the like. So, I think a big, big emotion that a lot of families need to address is blame.

Isaac:  Oh, definitely. That’s powerful. I love Junko, by the way. I have my–

Ben:  You just called him Junko.

Isaac:  Is it Junko, is it?

Ben:   It’s Jocko.

Isaac:  How do you say his name again?

Ben:  Junko is your garbage man, Jocko, J-O-C-K-O.

Isaac:  Jocko, that’s right. Jocko, well, yeah, that’s right. He’s the jiu-jitsu author, right?

Ben:  Yeah. You were combining his first and last names, Jocko Willink because I could see where Junko came from. Yeah.

Isaac:  Yeah, that’s right. Yeah.

Ben:  He’s wonderful. I’m not a big don’t sleep Navy Seal mentality kind of guy, but I do a lot of his messages around ownership and responsibility.

Isaac:  Dude, yeah. My kids, I gave them some money to read through his books. And, that’s something that it was a big book. It was a very big book. The kids read through the Bible and the next book was they read through his probably teen book that was 200 plus pages, but they got a lot out of that.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah, yeah. I was watching Facebook Memories the other day because I recently realized, “Oh, all my home videos are pretty much on Facebook,” so I’m in the process of getting them all off of Facebook. But, I came across this one speaking of paying your kids and my kids are both sifting through three $20 bills, each of them, and they’re knee-high to a grasshopper literally. I think 6 years old, long, flowing blonde hair, people used to ask them, what does she want at the grocery store because I thought my little blonde boys were just fair-skinned little girls. But, in the video, you can hear me near them like, “Where did you get that money?” And, they’re like, “We did 50 burpees and we did 10 pull-ups and we climbed the rope three times. And then, we went in the cold pool for five minutes and did breathwork.” I’m like, “Oh.” And then, they’re like, “10 times.” And, I thought, “Oh, my gosh, I did that to my sons when they were 6?” They had a two-hour cold plunge rope climbing burpee workout. I don’t throw that kind of stuff at them. I think that was when I was doing professional obstacle course racing, so I kind of wanted my kids to keep up with that, but yeah, I did use to pay my kids to do odd and sometimes over the top.

Isaac:  Crazy stuff, right?

Ben:  Yeah. Yeah.

So, we were talking about travel, how do you manage it, dude? I mean, like I said, you’re a road warrior, you’re out slaying dragons, you just got back from Tokyo and we can talk about this a little bit. You and I are speaking at this big Disrupt event down in Atlanta in a few months and kind of like me, you’re a lot of times in airplanes airports hotel rooms, temptations, et cetera. How do you manage, not just your health, but your presence as a father and husband with the travel?

Isaac:  Yeah, it’s a great question. I mean, I have to monitor the amount of travel that I do. And, I used to just book travel and I’m like, “Hey, babe, I’m doing this, I’m doing that.” And, it put a lot of pressure on her especially when she was raising infants and having other kids run around. We would have a hard time maybe with finding a nanny that’s reliable. And it would put a lot more stress on her if the Nanny calls in sick or it wasn’t as reliable as who we have now and who we’ve had in the last few years. But, I’ve had to really take a step back as she’s shared with me like, “Look, I just can’t have you do this anymore. You’re part of five masterminds. You run a mastermind like a high-level mastermind of dozens and dozens of doctors and health entrepreneurs, you should probably take a second to just look at your schedule.”

So, we joined Strategic Coach together. And, one of the things that Dan Sullivan says is–

Ben:  Oh, Dan Sullivan? Yeah.

Isaac:  Yeah, exactly. Is he said you should create your personal calendar before you create your business calendar. And, I used to do the opposite. I created my business calendar before I would create my personal calendar. And then, I would weasel in some things with my personal life. And oftentimes, it took a back burner. So, what I’ve been doing now is I’ll be like, “Hey, babe, I’m going to be planning the next six months in the business next week, let’s just plan the next year out for you and I and the kids so that I can work around that.” And so, we’ll create our quarterly vacations, our monthly three-day getaways, as many dates as we can get. This year, we’re going to be going to Italy for our anniversary, our 13th year anniversary.

Ben:  Oh, when’s that?

Isaac:  What’s that?

Ben:  When’s that? Italy.

Isaac:  In July. We’re going to go in, I think, the third week of July.

Ben:  Okay. We’ll just be getting back from our family bike ride trip in Italy. Otherwise, I’d take you out to pasta.

Isaac:  Oh, really? That would have been awesome to see you there.

Ben:  GMO and glyphosate free pasta. So, you’re intentionally calendaring creating present moments when you are home.

Isaac:  Yeah, yeah. And then, what I have a habit of now is just monitoring how I’ll pass through, I’ll say, “Hey, this is my plan. Does this work?” And, I’ll just be transparent. Normally it works, but it lasts two months. I did a private mastermind on a private island in the Pacific Ocean on this beautiful place off the coast of Panama and Costa Rica and it was amazing. But then, I went right to Mexico, I was keynote speaking at a big event out there. Then, I had a tour of Japan. So, I went out to Japan, I went to Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, et cetera. And then, I went back and I was speaking at this big doctor’s event again. So, it was too much. Erica told me it was too much, but I’d already put it in the calendar.

So, there’s a couple of events there that slip through the cracks, but it’s important to really monitor that with your spouse and just make sure it’s just giving a perfect example. We’re trying to find a nanny. We got four kids and I have this opportunity to go to one of my top affiliates’ ranches that he’s doing snowmobiling on kind of up in the mountains. And, it was going to be three or four days of snowmobiling. He was flying down. He was picking me up in his private jet and we’re just going to have a good time for four or five days. And, it’s a cool opportunity. You’re hanging out with successful people in the natural health space, picking you up on his private jet. I’m so jazzed to do this trip. All grass-fed bison and all these great meats that he’s got ready for us. And, the two days before, Erica looked at me and she’s like, “I don’t want you to go. I just can’t. We haven’t found a nanny yet” and yada, yada. And, I was just like, “Alright, done.” I know like old Isaac would have been like, “Babe, no, I’m getting picked up on this private jet. I am going snowmobiling.”

Ben:  You don’t understand, babe. You don’t understand. Yeah.

Isaac:  Exactly.

Ben:  Use your logical mind here. Dad’s making a paycheck. I’m providing for the family. I’m out there just nights of old on a snowmobile helping you guys out. It’s easy to justify to yourself, huh.

Isaac:  Exactly. Totally. So, I was immediately, “Alright, it’s clear. I’m not going. I’m cool with that.” And, I had to reorient myself. I called the guy up and he was totally cool with it, too. He’s like, “Hey, no worries, we’ll just do it some other time this year.” And so, just relationships as a parent, you’re going to have to sacrifice, especially high achieving type A drivers like you and I Ben. If we don’t continually be in a state of awareness around how our actions are affecting the world around us, we could just go into business growth mode all the time and change the world all the time. And, we don’t realize sometimes that the best way to change the world is through being fully present for our kids and our wife. You know what I’m saying?

Ben:  If you allow it to, your business will eat you alive. Chad Johnson, another parent who’s featured in the book, he’s got 11 kids, he’s an Iron Man triathlete, big mountain skier, and a real successful entrepreneur. And, he told me at dinner, and this actually is one of the reasons asked me in the book, he said, “Ben, your business with you alive, here’s the order of priority. Number one, God. Number two, your spouse because if you and your spouse aren’t together and on the same page, your relationship with your kids are going to go to pot. Number three, the kids. Number four, your personal health. Number five, business.” And, that was a light bulb moment for me. So now, when I get up in the morning, I don’t get myself over the emails and the Voxers and the organizations, to-do’s, it’s God, then Jessa, then although sometimes depending on whether or not morning delight happens, sometimes it’s just the first thing God. But, it’s God and my spouse and then the kids.

Isaac:  And, to that point–

Ben:  Yeah.

Isaac:  To that point, I think being with your spouse actually is one of the most amazing spiritual gifts that God’s given us. I think for me, that’s an amazing element. I don’t look at it as, “Hey, I’m with Erica,” I’m like, “Hey I’m with God, too” you know what I’m saying? This is me in worship. You know what I’m saying?

Ben:  Right. It’s like David Deida’s book, “Finding God in Sex.” And, although I think that sometimes sex can become an idol, especially once it becomes full-on tantric, let’s do LSD, smoke some weed, and have a six hour–

Isaac:  Oh, dude, I’m not talking about that. Yeah.

Ben:  One-on-one orgy together, but yeah, that deep sacred spiritual sex where you’re breathing together and you can feel the deep spiritual significance of your relationship melded with that physical relationship and the beauty of your lover, there is something deeply spiritual about it, I agree. It’s never going to replace God, of course, but it can definitely be just us praying together each night, having those regularly often scheduled and calendared sex nights or sex trips or sex dates. It’s definitely something that holds us together.

And, as you were talking, Isaac, about your routine and your travel as a family and then I know we’re starting to run short on time, so I do want to talk about this Disrupt event as well, but I wanted to share with you couple of things. In a lot of my speaking contracts now, I will delineate if I know it’s in a big bout of travel that I’m constantly going to be away from my family because of: I will stipulate that as a part of that speaking contract or that travel, my family, my wife and sometimes my sons need to be able to come with me to whatever event it is. And, that’s just built into the contract. So, I’ll do that sometimes so the family just comes with. 

Another thing is I always have a buffer day. Meaning either when I get home, I make sure there’s no work scheduled or I arrange for my flight home from the event to occur later in the day so I’ve got the whole morning in my hotel room to catch up on all the emails, the phone calls, the stuff that inevitably piles up so that when I do get home, I’m not rushing down to the office and having a brief and curt hello to the family before I jump back into work. So, I make sure slate’s cleared when I get home for the next day or I’ve got that buffer time worked in for a later flight home. So, it’s not like I got to rush home to see the family because I know how I operate. If I rush home to see the family and I’ve got a plate full of work, all the family is going to see is Dad’s home and he’s busy.

So, I do that and then I think one other thing is, and this is important especially because of the spiritual component, yeah, I have this robust morning spiritual practice at home, but I don’t guilt trip myself into being sleep deprived and getting up at 4:00 a.m. to do tons of Bible reading and scripture memorization and prayer when I’m out of conference. For example, I use John Eldridge’s Pause app. It’s a quick five to 10-minute pause where I can before I just rush off to be speaking at a conference at 8:00 a.m. or whatever, it’s just five to 10 minutes where there’s an app walking me through a prayer or it’s simply saying that one daily prayer that I have, and I know exactly how long it takes, and I can just drop to my knees and say that. But, in the same way that my workouts are quick minimum effective dose but highly effective workouts when I travel. My spiritual walk is the same way. And, I just want people to know, especially parents who travel a lot, like don’t guilt trip or shame yourself if your travel routine, especially from a spiritual standpoint and a physical standpoint isn’t the same as your home routine. It can vary. It needs to be present, but it can be a miniature version of it.

Isaac:  Absolutely, yeah. That’s amazing. And, that’s one thing I’m excited about as the kids get older is to bring them more with me while I travel because I want to integrate them more into what I’m doing like you and I always have. If I go for a week, then I take a day off on Monday to be with the kids. And, if I go for any more than a week then I take two days off, and so that’s been a rule that we followed and it’s just been a great way to reconnect with the family when I come back. But, I love everything you just said there. That’s awesome

Ben:  Yeah. And, the only time I think recently I can remember that my wife told me don’t go, and in retrospect you knowing medicine understand the significance of this was I was super excited about a trip to the, what’s it called, where Richard Branson has his get up out there in the islands. I’ll forget the name of it now. It’s Richard Branson’s–

Isaac:  Necker.

Ben:  Yeah, Necker. So, I was supposed to go out to Necker and speak and hang with Richard. And so, Necker required vaccinations. This was three years ago and I’m like, “Oh, I’m just going to get vaccinated and go.” And, my wife’s like, “Okay.” And, it was a day before, I had everything arranged and my wife just looks at me in the eye, she’s like, “Don’t go, don’t get vaccinated. I just have a bad feeling about this.” And, I was like, “No, no, no. You need to understand I’ve done the research on this and that and I’ve got this peptide protocol I’m going to do to take care of the damage and these different IVs. It’s going to be fine. I got some doctors helping me out to make sure I don’t get vaccine damage or whatever.” And, she’s like, “No, don’t do it.” And so, I was like, “Aargh!” And, an hour later after steaming, I came up to her, I’m like, “Okay, I’m not going to go. It’s not worth throwing a wrench in our relationship for me to do this. And, by the way, I think the vaccines are just fine, babe, but I’m just going to do this for you.”

And then, lo and behold, here we are three years later and a lot of my physician friends, they’re seeing triple the time of vaccine-related injuries than they are actual cases of COVID or long-haul COVID. Right now, it’s all vaccine injuries and I’m like, “Dodged the bullet on that. I need to remember to listen to my wife.” And now, we just got this entire podcast shadow banned.

Isaac:  That is so true. And, that’s another thing that we do with our kids is we don’t vaccinate. And, that’s just one element where people are like, “Man, your kid’s immune system is so resilient. They’re so healthy.” I’m like, we let them get the flu and the cold and get all snotty when they’re young because that’s how they build their immune system when they’re going to Montessori or to Goddard School or whatever we’re doing early on, it was great to get those exposures. But now, that is a true vaccine. That’s how you build up your T1 immune system. And so, I love that there’s more awareness. I mean, there’s a lot of really smart intelligent individuals that are calling out the truth around how you can truly boost your immune system and protect yourself versus doing what the majority of mainstream kind of dogma tells you to do.

Ben:  Yeah, yeah. My sons were born 15 years ago, I didn’t know a lot about vaccines but I did an extended vaccination schedule, minimalist doses. And then, because we were traveling a lot internationally, I did do MMR and polio and some of the ones I was concerned about. But, if I go back and do it over again, I do a more homeopathic and natural approach. And also, just bite the bullet again and just not travel with the kids until I was sure that they’d be able to handle something like a third-world country being unvaccinated. So anyways, though, do people need to be vaccinated by the way to go to this event that you and I are going to do in Atlanta?

Isaac:  I don’t know. I’m sure there’ll be some people that are vaccinated though. But no, I mean, you do not need to be.

Ben:  Tell me about the event.

Isaac:  So, Disrupt is a curated application-only event where you’re going to have to connect with me and/or my team to really qualify to come. But, it’s the top health entrepreneurs and doctors, and professionals in the space that are coming together to support each other to innovate, to create, to build affiliate relationships, and to come up with new innovative ideas and strategies to brainstorm, to mastermind, and to share. We’ve got some of the fastest-growing natural health companies in America that are going to be speaking from stage. One was doing just a couple a $100,000 a few years ago to a few million dollars a couple years ago to 20 million last year to 70 million this year. So, how the heck did they do that? What was their growth trajectory? They’re going to be sharing some of the secrets around how they did that one company that I’ve coached and trained sold for $250 million as a supplement company last summer. We’re going to have the founder come out and share some strategies and secrets around entrepreneurship and business building. We’ve got financiers and funding coming in. There’s people because we’ve sold the private equity so many times with the companies and my mastermind. They’re like, “How the heck are you doing this? Are there other companies that we can support and help?”

So, we’re wanting to have conversations around, “Hey, how can the natural health space and the more innovative longevity space progress and grow and disrupt the health industry?” And, it’s going to happen, it’s just that we want to have a conversation around how we can bring like-minded individuals, people that are just wanting to live in the world of possibility around, hey, what can we do to change the disease care system into a true health care system that is addressing underlying causes versus just treating the symptoms? And, how can we capitalize on what we’re seeing as one of the largest gold rushes in history away from disease care and into true health care? And, how can we financially capitalize and optimize our ability to grow businesses? But, how can we serve people at the highest level to get the best results and get truly transformative healthcare out to the masses? So, a lot of different businesses, we’ve got some businesses that sell lower price point products but have already done $125 million worth of sales that are going to be there. So, there’s just some really great people.

Ben, you’re coming. Ben Greenfield will be one of the keynotes that will be speaking at Disrupt, which I’m excited about. So, we’ve got the top biohacker in the world. One of the top fitness experts in the entire world there in Ben Greenfield. And, the other thing that I’m excited about for you, Ben, is you typically come and speak about health optimization, but you don’t talk necessarily as much about business and how you’ve built your successful empire. I mean, you’ve got just an amazing business and you’ve tried a lot of things, tested a lot of things, failed a lot of times, and then succeeded enormously over the years. And so, I’m excited for you to share a little bit about that.

Ben:  Yeah.

Isaac:  We’ve got Dr. Dan Pompa who’s talking about his explosive growth in his business, Amanda Tress who’s built a nine-figure business in the fasting and fitness space and nutrition space. And then, we’ve got a bunch of other really innovative doctors, medical doctors, and other health practitioners that are just really on the cutting edge of business entrepreneurship as well as transforming people’s lives.

Ben:  Awesome. What are the dates?

Isaac:  It’s September 28th, 29th, and October 1st.

Ben:  Okay, cool. By the way, we’re not biohacker, that’s kind of being the world’s top fax machine repair person or I don’t know, food dehydrator expert. It’s kind of pretty niche to be called the top biohacker. But regardless, yes, I’ll be opening the kimono on how I built Ben Greenfield Life and Kion and how we run the companies, the structure, all of my best business building and business management tips for what they’re worth from a glorified personal trainer like me. I’ll be down there giving a talk. 

What I’ll do is I’ll put a link to the event and all the details for it if you go to BenGreenfieldLife.com/JonesFamily. So, if you want to go into September, come join me and Isaac, probably be some good after-parties, fun dinners, cool people. So, that’s going to be in Atlanta.

And then, Isaac, you’re going to have to you have to tell Erica everything that she missed out on the second half of this podcast. I think it was way better once the wife left the room. You just tell her I said that. We crushed it once we got rid of the performance anxiety of having Erica around.

Isaac:  She speaks so well and sometimes it actually happens for me where I’m like, “Man, she’s so well-spoken. I don’t even know if I want to go after her.”

Ben:  Yeah.

Isaac:  So, yeah.

Ben:  I hear you.

Isaac:  Definitely enjoyable process. And dude, you’re amazing. Love you, brother, and I really appreciate what you’re doing with your mission to transform people’s lives and body, mind, and spirit. You’re an inspiration to all of us.

Ben:  Cool. Well, I love you too, bro. You’re an inspiration. And folks, if you want to listen to my first podcast with Isaac which was a lot more health and biohacking centered, I’ll put that in the shownotes at BenGreenfieldLife.com/JonesFamily. You can also watch the video version of this podcast if you want to see Isaac sitting around being lazy and me walking on the treadmill. And anyways, all the resources will be over there and read Isaac and Erica’s chapter in “Boundless Parenting.” BoundlessParentingBook.com is where you can grab it. Their chapter gets into a ton of details and other things we didn’t even talk about out on this show. So, whether you’re a parent or grandparent or a teacher or an educator or you have a child or you want to have a child or you plan on having a child, definitely read the book, grab it, it’s kind of the ultimate tome gathered wisdom from a lot of amazing parents including Isaac and Erica.

Isaac, dude, thank you so much for coming on, man.

Isaac:  Cool, brother. Appreciate you, man.

More than ever these days, people like you and me need a fresh entertaining, well-informed, and often outside-the-box approach to discovering the health, and happiness, and hope that we all crave. So, I hope I’ve been able to do that for you on this episode today. And, if you liked it or if you love what I’m up to, then please leave me a review on your preferred podcast listening channel wherever that might be, and just find the Ben Greenfield Life episode. Say something nice. Thanks so much. It means a lot.

 

 

Fasten your seatbelts my friend, this episode goes deep. Today I rekindle the conversation with the esteemed Dr. Isaac Jones and his inspiring wife Erica.

You may remember me and Isaac’s past discussion in the episode titled “5 Hidden Causes of Fatigue That Most Doctors Don’t Know About And Won’t Test For.” This time we dive deep into Isaac’s businesses, and the much deeper topic of family. 

Credited as “The Doctor of the Future” by Jeff Arnold, the founder of WebMD.com, Dr. Jones is a relentless trailblazer in the realm of innovative healthcare solutions. His brainchild, the Health Experts Alliance (HEA), serves as a beacon for progressive doctors and health entrepreneurs, guiding them to create predictably profitable businesses that prioritize freedom.

Isaac isn’t just revamping the health system; he’s revolutionizing the way we perceive it, transitioning from mere “disease care” to genuine healthcare. His specialty lies in amplifying authentic health narratives, empowering the rise of truth-telling voices and businesses. Isaac’s mentorship has paved the way for companies like Ancient Nutrition and Cellcore Biosciences, with collective sales exceeding $800M.

But it’s not all business with Isaac. He’s also a devoted husband to his lovely wife, Erica, and a proud father to their three sons and a daughter.

Their innovative and heartfelt approach to parenting landed them a feature in my book, Boundless Parenting, which is also available now in audiobook form where you can listen to Dr. Isaac & Erica narrate their section of the book.

And this is the greater topic of today’s podcast: Family, and everything that comes with it.

We discuss topics ranging from parenting styles to love languages and even go into how I almost got a divorce, and what Jessa and I did to weather our marriage problems (as well as Isaac and Erica’s tactics for mitigating marital turmoil).

Dr. Isaac and Erica have built their family over years of working together in business, curating their parenting practices, and navigating some of the most difficult and rewarding adventures possible for any parent. This wisdom has been hard-earned and deeply tested. Let their results be your map. 

During our discussion, you’ll discover:

-Who are Isaac and Erica Jones?…06:58

  • In our 2015 episode, Isaac talked about chronic fatigue
  • “Doctor of the Future”
  • Founder and CEO of Health Experts Alliance
  • Very passionate about health, but also about family, community, and God
  • A dedicated husband and father of 3 sons and 1 daughter
  • Ben decided to feature Isaac and Erica in his book Boundless Parenting

-What their morning health optimization routine looks like…10:07

  • Isaac’s morning routine:
    • Wakes up before the family
    • Goes to the washroom
    • Puts on the DAB (Daily Audible Bible) 
    • Stand naked in front of red lights while listening to Scripture and brushing teeth and washing face
    • Goes to the closet where he has a vision board
    • Plans his day
      • 5-minute journal
      • Short meditation
      • Pre-create what the day will look like
    • Prepares breakfast for the kids
      • Bacon, eggs, and hot sauce
  • Erica doesn’t have time for a long morning routine
  • Focuses on night routine and good sleep
  • Competing with each other’s Oura ring data
  • Depends on his wife for his routine

-How did Isaac and Erica meet and marry?…17:46

  • Isaac had a patient who lost 70 pounds
  • Begged him to come to her church
  • She was persistent so he went to her church
  • Met a guy who started calling him to church events
  • Came to a church group meeting and Erica was leading it
  • Became best friends
  • She worked for Big Pharma
  • Wanted to hire her, but married her instead
  • Erica became the CEO of his company

-How Isaac and Erica built their business with their unique gifts…20:38

  • Entrepreneur Organizational System (EOS) of their company
  • Erica saw how Isaac was gifted with vision, influence, good relationship
    • Realized she can take that vision and help him execute it
  • At the beginning, they didn’t have enough appreciation for each other’s unique gifts
  • She built the foundation for what later became a multimillion-dollar enterprise
  • Erica is a gifted integrator, loves numbers and organization
  • Integrator vs. visionary
  • Rocket Fuel by Gino Wickman
  • Integrator is someone that’s looking at operations, making sure the company is profitable
    • Are the systems and processes in place for the team to succeed?
    • Are we sticking to the business plan?
  • Now they have a different level of respect for each other around their unique gifting
  • Ben’s experience with working with his wife
  • Conflicts in business and how to resolve them
  • Isaac and Erica don’t fight as much as before
  • Used KOLBE analysis to understand each other
    • Isaac – quick starter, visionary, likes to think big, creative
    • Erica –  fact-finder, following through, research
  • The Synergist by Les McKeown
  • You have to understand how other people operate
  • Understanding their assessments of who they are –  operator, processor, visionary
    • At first, stepping on each other’s toes
    • Later understood each other and their gifts better
  • Ben runs his companies with the EOS system
  • Enneagram Test
  • Leaning on people that are more genius than you are in certain areas
  • Understanding each other’s strengths as parents and as entrepreneurs
  • Involving children with their business but are still young
    • Kids have the entrepreneurial spirit

-Ben and his sons’ first company together…38:00

  • Fried Pickles company
  • Went to Costa Rica
  • Had to come back because of Ben’s passport problems
  • Had a whole week with nothing planned to do
  • Did father-son fun night
  • The Art of War by Sun Tzu
  • Ben’s sons were reading it for homeschooling
  • Got an idea about creating a game called The Fart of War
  • Developed the idea by drawing different fart characters on index cards
  • Podcast with James Altucher:
  • Started a company Fried Pickled Games
  • Go Greenfields
  • Launching a game on Kickstarter

-Three main elements in Isaac’s and Erica’s parenting approach…41:05

  • The first component – Spiritual
    • Their goal as parents is to teach kids how to have a personal relationship with God and to know the Lord for themselves
  • What does that look like from a practical stance?
  • It’s all throughout the day
  • A lot of the focus time is in the homeschool room
    • God can be weaved into every aspect of education
    • The story of Moses and how the kids reacted to it
  • Teaching kids
    • How to be attentive
    • What does it look like to really love 
    • What does it look like to show deference and to put someone else ahead of yourself?
    • How to be content with the moment
  • Watching how their mom and dad live their lives
  • Erica was a gospel singer – good quality music is always permeating the house
    • Music is very important and powerful
    • Ben’s use of music during the day
    • Music brings the presence of God into the house
  • Using music to enhance kids’ lives
  • The second element  – Physical
    • Health, wellness, holistic living
    • Teaching children to live on purpose when it comes to their health
  • Erica has done a great job with systematizing meals
    • A whole system that rotates different types of meals throughout the day
    • Kids were fighting every morning about what breakfast was
    • Kids love to help in the kitchen
  • The 4-Hour Chef by Tim Ferris
  • Ben’s sons also learned to cook
  • Isaac and Erica’s family love being outside and are very active
    • Kids play in the dirt, love football, golf, wrestling, running
    • Sense of adventure
    • Creative play
  • Ben’s formal structuring of workouts
  • Isaac’s use of the Neubie
  • The third element – Emotional
    • Asking kids how they’re doing
    • Prioritizing their emotional health
    • Trying to create an environment where they’re able to communicate freely around their emotions
    • Spending some alone time with a child to address their specific emotions
      • Sometimes a formal one-on-one date
      • Sometimes stealing a couple of minutes to talk
  • It’s important to make sure to carve that space
  • If one child is getting less one-on-one connection, they start acting up, unconsciously
  • Capturing small moments with a kid is very important

-Isaac’s and Ben’s breakfasts…1:00:14

  • Isaac’s breakfast that morning
  • Ben’s breakfast
    • Space milk smoothie
    • Fermented plants designed in a way that creates all the essential amino acids

-The love language and marriage problems…1:01:53

  • The importance of eye contact
    • Ben’s eye contact exercise with his kids
  • Using the love languages in terms of knowing your child’s language and adjusting accordingly
    • Important to know what your child’s love language is
  • Understanding your kids’ personalities and their needs
  • They act out less when you understand what their love language is
  • Surveys to identify the love language of each member of the family
  • Isaac’s love language is words of affirmation and physical touch
  • Ben’s experience with his wife
  • Isaac’s experience with his wife
  • Ben’s wife’s morning practice
    • Reading the Bible or a devotional and praying for 2 hours
    • Started when Ben wasn’t fully present as a husband and father
  • Ben wasn’t devoted to God; He wasn’t a faithful husband
  • His wife prayed for him; Ben realized what he needed to be
  • Now he has Scripture and prayer time; God got them through all trials and tribulations
  • Divorce is an easy way out
  • Isaac talks about the most challenging times in his marriage
    • You have to be committed to growth as a couple
    • Challenges are the greatest opportunities for growth
  • Healing and Recovery by David R. Hawkins
  • Blame is a low-frequency emotion
  • How to Be Free from Bitterness by Jim Wilson
  • Little bits of blame throughout the day lead to deep-rooted bitterness
  • Bitterness is associated with disease
  • Jocko Willink -Discipline equals freedom

-How to manage your presence as a father and husband with travel?…1:25:05

  • A lot of pressure on his wife
  • Create your personal calendar before you create your business calendar
    • Now first planning the year with his wife and kids
  • As a husband and father, you have to sacrifice
  • Type A personality can easily go into business growth mode all the time
  • Chad Johnson, another parent who is featured in Ben’s books
    • 11 kids
    • Successful triathlete
    • Successful entrepreneur
  • He said your business would eat you alive unless you had priorities:
    1. God
    2. Spouse
    3. Kids
    4. Personal health
    5. Business
  • Being with your spouse sexually is one of the most amazing spiritual gifts that God’s given us
  • Finding God Through Sex by David Deida
  • Ben sometimes takes his family on his business trips
  • When he comes back, he doesn’t plan anything for the next day
  • John Eldridge’s One Minute Pause app
  • Richard Branson’s Necker Island
    • Ben was called to be a speaker
    • He was required to get a vaccination
    • His wife was against it
    • He listened to his wife and she proved to be right
  • Vaccination and building the immune system
    • Ben’s stance on vaccine

-Disrupt event in Atlanta…1:40:28

  • Disrupt is a curated application on the event where you have to connect with Isaac or his team to qualify to come
  • Top health entrepreneurs, doctors, and professionals are coming to support each other, innovate, create, build affiliate relationships, and come up with new innovative ideas and strategies to brainstorm to mastermind
  • Some of the fastest-growing natural health companies in America are going to be speaking
    • Sharing secrets of how they did it
  • Got financiers and funding coming in
  • How can the natural health space and longevity space progress and grow and disrupt the health industry?
  • A conversation between like-minded individuals
  • How can we serve people at the highest level to get the best results and get truly transformative, healthcare out to the masses?
  • Ben will be one of the key speakers
  • Disrupt Atlanta, September 28th, 29th, and October 1st

 -And much more…

Upcoming Events:

  • Disrupt Healthcare: September 29 – October 1, 2023

Join me for the Disrupt 2023 Event in Atlanta, Georgia between September 29th – October 1st. This highly practical and immersive workshop will feature live Q&As, my top secrets for career success, and much more! Head to bengreenfieldlife.com/disrupt2023 to claim your spot today.

  • Couples Collective: October 25 – 29, 2023

Join Jessa and me for an exclusive and immersive way to explore health, wellness, and mindset with your significant other in Napa, California October 25th – 29th. Head over to ownitcoaching.com/couples-collective to apply.

32 Questions For Boundless Parenting

The following questions were posed to Isaac and Erica Jones, and the rest of the wise parents interviewed for my upcoming book, Boundless Parenting.

  1. How many children do you have, how old are they, what is their profession or passion, and why, in particular, are you proud of them?
  2. Are there any elements of your parenting approach that you would consider to be particularly unique?
  3. What books, systems, models, or resources do you rely heavily upon or consider to be indispensable in your parenting?
  4. What traditions, habits, routines, or rituals are most important, memorable, or formative for your family?
  5. What rites of passage or significant moments of maturation to adolescence or adulthood have your children experienced, if any?
  6. Who do you look up to as parenting mentors?
  7. What have you taught your children about raising their own children?
  8. Do you have any philosophies or strategies for educating your children outside of traditional school, such as homeschooling, unschooling, self-directed education, or other alternative, creative, or “outside-the-box” forms of education?
  9. What has been your proudest moment as a parent, and why?
  10. What do you wish you had known before first becoming a parent?
  11. Have you ever experienced imposter syndrome as a parent? If so, how have you coped with that?
  12. How have you achieved a balance between mentoring and passing on wisdom without “living vicariously” through your children?
  13. Have you ever faced any big parenting decisions that kept you awake at night worrying or that you feared you would mess up?
  14. What do you regret, if anything, from your experience as a parent?
  15. What is the biggest mistake you have made as a parent?
  16. What, if anything, from your parenting experience would you go back and change or improve?
  17. If you had multiple children, what did you think was right at the time with one child that you then went back and changed with the next child or future children?
  18. Have you ever sensed or feared that your children would grow up too different or weird as a result of any “outside-the-box” parenting approaches you used? If so, how did you deal with that?
  19. Have you ever differed from your spouse on parenting principles, techniques, or approaches? If so, how did you manage that?
  20. Warning: This question is long but important: As a parent, have you ever felt conflicted about wanting to share a book, teaching, resource, or method with your children as a means of impacting their future success, but feared that it might “overload” them, especially at their age? If so, how did you balance bestowing this valuable knowledge to your child without causing them to worry too much about adult concerns? How did you decide when to just “let a kid be a kid” versus nudging them towards responsible adulthood and the attainment of valuable wisdom?
  21. How have you balanced being a present, engaged parent while preserving your own identity, taking time for your own self-care, tending to your career, or pursuing other interests that did not include your children?
  22. How have you engaged in one-on-one time or created space for dedicated time with your child, especially if you have more than one child?
  23. If your children have grown up and moved out of your house, what strategies have you found most helpful for maintaining and building your relationship with them?
  24. If your children have grown up and moved out of your house, do you often miss them, fear for them, or think of them? If so, how have you coped with any loneliness or desire for their presence?
  25. Do you have non-negotiable rules for your children?
  26. How have you disciplined your children, if at all?
  27. How have you helped your child to establish responsible, moderated, or conscientious consumption or use of books, media, entertainment, screen time, and social media? This is not my favorite question because the focus on “limiting screen time” seems a bit blown out of proportion these days and I think causes kids to get obsessed with the “forbidden fruit” of screen time, but it seems to be on the minds of many parents today, so I’d be remiss not to include it.
  28. Have you emphasized or encouraged any health, fitness, or healthy eating principles with your children? If so, what has seemed to work well?
  29. If your child or children could inscribe anything on your gravestone, what would you hope that they would write? What would you most want them to remember about you?
  30. What do you most want to be remembered for as a parent?
  31. What do you think your child or children would say is their fondest memory of being raised by you?
  32. What message for parents would you put on a billboard?

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Dr. Isaac Jones and Erica Jones:

– Podcasts:

– Books:

– Other Resources:

Episode sponsors:

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Joovv: Get an exclusive discount on your first order of my favorite in-home light therapy devices. Just go to Joovv.com/ben and apply code BEN.

Organifi Sunrise: Organifi’s Sunrise Kit includes their signature Green, Red, and Gold Juice blends. Get free shipping and 20% off your order of the Sunrise to Sunset Kit by going to organifi.com/ben.

Vuori: Get yourself some of the most comfortable and versatile clothing on the planet at vuori.com/BEN. Not only will you receive 20% off your first purchase, but you’ll enjoy free shipping on any U.S. orders over $75 and free returns. 

Boundless Parenting Audiobook: Everything you need to know about family, parenting, and raising healthy, resilient, free-thinking, and impactful children is now available as an audiobook. Go to boundlessparentingbook.com to learn more or order a hard copy. 

Do you have questions, thoughts, or feedback for Isaac, Erica, or me? Leave your comments below and one of us will reply!

 

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