As a remorseful sex offender who’s done your time and been officially cleared as posing no threat to society, you’re committed to turning your life around for you, your wife, and your five-year-old. But how can you get a job when you’re a convicted felon with the extra stigma of being on the registry for the next 20 years? We’ll tackle this and more here on Feedback Friday!

And in case you didn’t already know it, Jordan Harbinger (@JordanHarbinger) and Jason DeFillippo (@jpdef) banter and take your comments and questions for Feedback Friday right here every week! If you want us to answer your question, register your feedback, or tell your story on one of our upcoming weekly Feedback Friday episodes, drop us a line at Now let’s dive in!

On This Week’s Feedback Friday, We Discuss:

  • How do you get a job if you’re a registered sex offender who’s done your time and been officially cleared as posing no threat to society?
  • While your significant other wants kids someday, you’re undecided. You’re young, but you don’t want to waste their time. How long do you reasonably have to make the decision?
  • How do you handle a two-faced ladder-climber in your company whose Machiavellian manipulations aren’t as invisible as they seem to think they are?
  • What can a high schooler do to network in the field they wish to pursue when it’s a bit esoteric — like biochemistry?
  • A job promotion for more pay and research experience sounds great, but you’re worried about losing the downtime that allows you to get homework done for your current course load. Should you choose freedom or finances?
  • After past disappointments, your wife is unexpectedly pregnant. It’s great news, but you’ve been training for a dream job that would take you away for the months around your baby’s birth and the opportunity window is about to close since you’re near the age cap. What’s your best next move — for yourself and your family?
  • Life Pro Tip: Real wealth is about freedom. Money can help achieve these things, but there are plenty of people who make lots of money yet aren’t free. Make choices that get you this kind of wealth, not just the money.
  • A quick shout out to John M. Carr!
  • Have any questions, comments, or stories you’d like to share with us? Drop us a line at!
  • Connect with Jordan on Twitter at @JordanHarbinger and Instagram at @jordanharbinger.
  • Connect with Jason on Twitter at @jpdef and Instagram at @JPD, join his podcasting club, and check out his other show: Grumpy Old Geeks.

Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider leaving your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!

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How to Get a Job If You’re a Sex Offender | Feedback Friday (Episode 316)

Jordan Harbinger: [00:00:03] Welcome to Feedback Friday. I’m your host Jordan Harbinger and I’m here with producer Jason DeFillippo. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world’s most brilliant and interesting people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you. If you’re new to the show on Fridays, we give advice to you directly and answer listener questions. The rest of the week, we have long-form interviews and conversations with a variety of amazing folks — from spies to CEOs, athletes to authors, to thinkers and performers.

[00:00:32] This week we had journalist Michael Yon. He was covering the Hong Kong protest and what those might mean for China and the rest of the world. Actually, funnily enough, well, maybe not funny to him, he was not allowed entry back to Hong Kong. He left for a little while and they barred him from being allowed to enter the country again, made Time Magazine. So it’s obviously saying something the Chinese government does not like. And so that episode was full of, well, those things probably. We also had Admiral McRaven from the vault coming back on, discussing what special operations teams can teach us that we might bring into our lives and our businesses.

[00:01:06] Of course, our primary mission here on The Jordan Harbinger Show is to pass along experiences and insights to you and that’s what we’re doing directly here on Friday and every Friday on Feedback Friday. We want to place just one brick in the structure that makes up your life. That’s really what this podcast is about. And you can reach us at And toss your question in there and I got to say, Jason, I have been better. I am wildly, wildly hungover, which is not normal. I don’t normally drink. But I was hanging out with T.I., the Tip Harris.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:01:39] Name drop.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:01:41] Well, I’ll tell you the joke wouldn’t be as funny without it. But yes, you have to be an A-list celebrity in order to get me to drink. How’s that? But it was like you can have whatever you like, and apparently what I like is a liter of tequila or whatever.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:01:54] Oh man. It’s a bad idea.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:01:56] Lots of tequila.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:01:57] That’s a bad idea.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:01:58] It was a bad idea. And apparently, it was really fun. And the last thing I remember from the evening was him saying, “This guy thinks he’s Eminem and we should do this every month,” and the rest of the evening just kind of melts away after that.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:02:13] You poured yourself into my studio this morning out of your Uber.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:02:16] I slithered under the door of your studio, basically. Yeah. It was not good. By the way, the prison trip is packed. There’s just no more room at all for anyone. I’m sorry about that. Who knew we would fill a prison trip with 100 people? It’s kind of crazy. You guys are crazy good show fans, crazy good people. I’m looking forward to meeting a bunch of you behind bars later this month. Jason, what’s the first thing out of the mailbag?

Jason DeFillippo: [00:02:37] Hello, Jordan and Jason. I’m a convicted felon with the worst of the worst crimes of a sex offense. Without going into too much detail, I was in a dark, dark place, depressed and finished with my life. I let my stress and negative feelings out in harmful ways in which I wholeheartedly regret. I’m now a sex offender and have to live as one for 20 years and with the felony on my record. I’m currently 35 and have a five-year-old daughter and a supporting wife. I regret what I’ve done more than anything. I decided that I’m living the rest of my life doing the right thing and being a very productive and positive member of society. I vowed to help others and do what is right from now on.

Before I was convicted, I worked in healthcare with a good-paying career and it was very stable. I doubt that I can ever go back. I found it hard to find a job because of my record, which is okay because I’ve always had entrepreneurial tendencies and this has pushed me to pursue that faster. The problem is that I have a hard time getting over my label of a sex offender, which causes different issues. I keep myself from certain opportunities because I think of what would happen if they find out or when I have to tell them. Simply being associated with a business or person can be detrimental to that business or person.

People are eager to speak with me and talk business, but finding out my status would probably cause them to second guess and move on. How should I approach this with people who I want to form a partnership or affiliation with? How do I help people see who I really am and that I’m a good person with the exception of a huge mistake that I wish I’d never done? There is a huge stereotype with sex offenders. Many of them may be true, but I fit none of them. I’ve been cleared of being a predator and even completed a three-year-long class.

I do anything I can daily to better myself and improve my life and my family’s life. I want to show my daughter that regardless of your status or position, you can do anything you put your mind to. I also want to show her that I made a horrible mistake and that I’m committed to being a great person from here on out. Thanks, Living Right.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:04:29] Well, I have to say this is a tough one because my feelings are almost always — well, not almost — they are always with the victims of crimes like this. So it’s a little sticky wicket to kind of cover this. But I have to admire you coming forward and trying to make your life better for the sake of your daughter and your family. And I work with people who have rough pasts with some of the prison work that we do, and I understand the stigma that follows offenses and offenders often for the rest of their lives, regardless of what the statute might say. I think it’s great that you want to create a career and show a good example to your daughter as well.

[00:05:03] In your case, jobs and corporate experience might really be tough, especially in the beginning. I think starting your own business and learning to write your own ticket, so to speak, that might be the way to go. If that’s the way you’re leaning already in terms of entrepreneurship, that’s probably a safer path. It’s certainly going to be the less judgment there. I think there’s probably a lot more places you can gain experience and work and get a stable income while working on a business or a side hustle. I don’t think you have to go all in. In fact, I never recommend that. You might just have to take a job that’s less desirable or a little bit lower pay while you build your business.

And for business in any other kind of partnership or relationship, you’re going to have to spend a lot of time more than anyone else building trust, building rapport with people first because when you drop this bomb on them, you need a track record and previous experiences with those people. That will be the dominant driver of how these people experience you instead of finding out right away, judging you by the worst decision you’ve ever made in your entire life, and only having that to go on. So you need to develop a stronger record first. That’s a balance that you’re really gonna have to feel out over time because you don’t want to wait too long, or people will be like, “Wow, you’ve been hiding that,” but if you wear it on your sleeve and you’d talk about it right away, except in times when you legally have to disclose right away, you’re going to run into this issue over and over and over. You’ve got to work on when it’s appropriate to disclose.

[00:06:20] That said, you’re probably constrained by certain guidelines on how and when this has to be done. If you need to, I can get permission to share some of the curriculum we have here at the prison with Hustle 2.0. They used to train the Mavericks, which is what we call the inmates. We have information on how we train them to disclose their past as well because this is something that everybody who’s been to prison always, always, always has to deal with. In short, the key is to own it, explain it, not make excuses for it, and explain in detail how you have changed, and why the deeds of your past are forever and only in your past.

[00:06:53] I’ll have Jen share some of that info with you as well. I admire you moving forward and having the courage to take this issue head-on. It is just ugly though. I think we all feel for the victim, especially when it comes to sexual assault. I will admit that I never really thought before my work with the prisons how crime affects offenders as well. But if we’re going to heal our society and make people productive members of society, we have to work on both sides of the equation.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:07:18] I have to say, Jordan, I had a hard time with this one. When we first got the question in, I read it and it kept me up at night. I’m like, “Is this something that we should really be dipping our toes into?” Especially there was a line in here where he kind of sweeps the sex-offender stereotype under the rug, where he says that there is a stereotype of sex offenders, and many of them may be true — that many of them may be true — seems like he’s deflecting the fact that it might not be true for him. And he says it’s not true for him, which makes me think that, “Oh, is he really repentant on what he has done in the past?” And that really kept me up at night.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:07:52] Yeah, I mean, it sounds like he is, but I also understand not wanting to fully kind of dive into your crime and be like, “Well, other people who’ve done the similar crime, they’re much worse than me,” or, “They’re still dangerous, but I’m not.” And I get the temptation to do that because —

Jason DeFillippo: [00:08:08] I know he’s just saying, “I’m a sex offender light,” you know?

Jordan Harbinger: [00:08:11] Yeah. I didn’t pick it up that way, but I can definitely see how that’s done. And I think a lot of people are probably going to be really annoyed. There’s definitely going to be some people who are like, “I can’t believe that you helped this person.” But I think it’s important to realize that — and I don’t feel this way at all. I think I admire the guy coming forward like I said — but let’s assume that we want all sex offenders to immediately spontaneously combust. That’s not the most productive thing for society. We still need people who are able to work, to work, especially if they’re married and have a kid. Or at least have a kid. I guess being married doesn’t matter, but if he’s got a five-year-old daughter, we can’t just be like, “Hey, guess what? You have to be poor and miserable forever,” because that affects the family and the child. So even in the absence of any judgment on the crime, it’s still better for everyone If this person can be a productive member of society.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:09:00] Oh, absolutely.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:01] That’s kind of the way I’m looking at it.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:09:02] I don’t disagree with you on that. It’s just I had to get to that point.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:05] Yeah. Yeah. I agree.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:09:06] You know, it took me a while to get to that point.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:09:07] I agree. Jen was like, “Do you want to answer this?” And I was like, “You know, yeah, I mean, this person is probably in a tough spot, obviously in a tough spot.” That’s what the show is for. All right, next up.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:09:16] Hello, Triple J. I’ve been dating a woman for a few months and everything is going quite well. We’re both responsible and career-driven and find satisfaction in the same things. Things are going well enough that I can see us getting married someday. The place we differ in major life decisions is children. She definitely wants kids, and I’m undecided. We’ve discussed it and she’s okay with me being undecided at the moment. I haven’t really been in a position to seriously think about having children since I still live with roommates in a high cost of living area and sometimes feel like I have no idea what I’m doing and barely feel like an adult myself.

I get a bit of a sense of longing when I hear people talk about raising kids, but at the same time, dislike actually being around children. I can conceptually understand why having children would be rewarding, but I just don’t know if it’s something I want to do myself yet. We’re very early in our relationship and she wants to be more financially stable and travel before having kids. So there are a few years, at least before she wants to actually have children. We’re both 26, so still young, but at the point in our lives that we don’t want to invest a lot of time into someone that isn’t the right person.

How long do I reasonably have to make the decision on whether or not I want kids? I want to be respectful of her time. If I wait too long and end up not wanting kids, I feel I would be wasting it. I also don’t want to rush since it’s a major life decision and setting some sort of deadline doesn’t feel right. Jordan, I know you and Jen waited until you were a bit older to have a kid. Is that something you made a decision on much earlier and when did you know you wanted kids? Thanks in advance for the advice. Cheers. Pensive About Parenting.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:45] I was talking about this with Jen. She actually had some great input here. So this is essentially her answer, and I’ll tell you where mine differs if it does. She said, “Everyone’s different, but for me, I always knew I wanted kids. I just always thought the coolest thing to do is to create life. And how fun it would be to teach it things.” I love how she calls our child it. “But I never felt ready and I still miss my old life, but I’m glad we did it because if we missed the window of opportunity, we would have serious regrets.”

[00:11:10] Now that I also agree with, I always kind of thought I wanted kids, but I never thought I was ready. I didn’t know about the timing and that sort of thing. And I think a lot of people are in that boat. She also says, “I should point out I never had any interest in babies. I never even held a baby before Jayden.” So I had more baby experience than my wife did, which is kind of crazy. She also had no interest in children directly. “I wasn’t around kids much, so I never knew how to interact with them and admit I was the one to get judgy at the bratty, noisy ones at restaurants and on flights.” Again, that’s Jen. But I think for me, I probably was a little bit more patient with kids just because I know that they’re probably impossible to control, and I had dogs growing up and they’re kind of similar in that way where they won’t listen and you can’t logically reason with them.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:11:54] And they all poop on the floor.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:55] And they poop on the floor. Exactly. “On top of that, I always really enjoyed our lifestyle and just being unencumbered. Even at 32 when I found out we were pregnant, I saw my freedom in life as I knew it slipping away and I was terrified.” Again, this is Jen. I was purely excited, but I was older. “But I knew I couldn’t delay too long because fertility tanks and risks go way up once you reach a certain age,” which I think your fertility drops by like 90 percent when you hit 40 or 39.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:12:20] Wow.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:20] It’s crazy. I mean, obviously the age —

Jason DeFillippo: [00:12:22] I am never going to get pregnant then.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:12:23] You are not going to get pregnant. No, you are out of luck. “Once we had Jayden, I will say it’s not easy, but it is super important to have a strong support system.” Jen’s parents are 15 minutes away. They come to bring food. They watch him. Her aunt watches Jayden half a day, five days a week. We have tons of friends nearby. Of course, being in a secure financial position helps as well. This would have been a much greater stress on us financially at age 27 which, by the way, that’s I think how old Jen was when we met. I was 33 and she was 27. So you have time. Jen and I talked about having kids on like the first or second date, because it was an important thing —

Jason DeFillippo: [00:12:57] I do believe it was the second date. The fact that I know that is scary.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:13:00] That is weird.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:13:01] But, yes, I do know that.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:13:01] But, yeah, that is weird that you know that and I didn’t. “All of the sacrifices are worth it for the fun new experiences and challenges that come with raising a tiny human. And I’m glad we didn’t wait any longer, but I also don’t wish we did this earlier.” That’s Jen’s opinion. I wish that I’d done it earlier, but remember Jen’s talking from the perspective of a 33-year-old, and I’m talking from the perspective of a 39-year-old, so I probably was ready around 35, 20/20 hindsight. But I bet you that I wouldn’t have felt any more ready by that point anyway, just because I didn’t feel ready even now. So there’s that.

[00:13:34] Basically, once you have a kid, you’re going to be like, “How was this allowed? How is it allowed for us to just have a kid?” I mean, you need a license for a damn dog, but you can pop out as many dang kids as you want.

[00:13:45] So thanks to my wife Jen for that input here. I have to say I agree with most all of that. You have a ton of time for this and to make this decision, as long as you’re constantly checking in and communicating how you feel here, and you’re not just telling the other person what they want to hear so that you don’t make waves and then you’re both making your own decisions and making the decision together using full and honest information. What you don’t want to do is say, “Yeah, sure, let’s have a kid.” And then you’re really hoping that she can’t get pregnant right away and that you need another couple of years, dah, dah, dah. You have to be really honest about it because once you have the kid, it’s, it’s a bit late to decide you didn’t want to have a kid.

So that’s what really counts here. And that’s how you’re going to avoid digging yourself into trouble, wasting someone else’s time because you’ve finally decided that you don’t want to have kids, but you don’t want to break up, so you didn’t say anything for three years. That’s when you really start going down a dangerous road or you can get pressured into doing something you never really wanted in the first place. And it happens through inaction, through lack of communication. So just make sure that you’re both being really honest and you’re checking in regularly because you are allowed to change your mind. And that is important to know as well.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:14:55] This is Feedback Friday. We’ll be right back after this.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:58] This episode is sponsored in part by SimpliSafe. Your local PD — police department — they probably receive a hundred calls a night from burglar alarms. The vast, vast majority of the time, they have no idea whether the alarm is real, if there’s a real crime going on or not. All the alarm company could tell them is the motion sensor went off. Not very helpful. SimpliSafe home security is different. If there’s a break in SimpliSafe uses real video evidence to give police an eyewitness account of the crime. They can tell them where the intruder is in the home, whether they’re armed, what they’re doing, and that means please dispatch up to 350 percent faster than for a regular normal burglar alarm, which they generally assume as a false one.

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Jason DeFillippo: [00:16:01] Visit You’ll get free shipping and a 60-day risk-free trial. You’ve got nothing to lose. Go now and be sure to go to That’s so they know that we sent you. That

Jordan Harbinger: [00:16:19] This episode is also sponsored by Better Help. You know what doesn’t help anxiety? Trying to find a therapist. The last thing you need worrying about your issues is having to go through a list of insane Yelp reviews to find someone who will listen to you. “Lucy gave this therapist five stars, but Pam gave her one, which is it? I just want to talk about my breakup. Damn you, Pam.” Then if you finally do find one, you have to drive an hour in traffic to a sterile office building and pray that you don’t have to make forced eye contact with a stranger who has more diplomas on their wall. Then any idea on how to fix your problems looks like Pam might’ve been right, but there is an easier way. Better Help online counseling. They’re there for you.

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Jason DeFillippo: [00:17:19] it is a truly affordable option and our listeners get 10 percent off your first a month with a discount code JORDAN. So get started today. Go to Simply fill out a questionnaire to help them assess your needs and get matched with a counselor you’ll love. That’s

[00:17:36] Thanks for listening and supporting the show and to learn more about our sponsors and get links to all the great discounts you just heard visit And if you’d be so kind, please drop us a nice rating and review in iTunes or your podcast player of choice. It really helps us out and helps build the show family. If you want some tips on how to do that, head on over to Now let’s hear some more of your questions here on Feedback Friday.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:18:02] All right, what’s next?

Jason DeFillippo: [00:18:03] Hello Jordan and group. I found myself in a bit of an uncomfortable situation at work. I recently started a new job in healthcare. We’re a group of diverse, strong women, and I was initially very excited to be joining on. However, another woman and I onboarded around the same time and she’s been a bit of a problem for the group. She’s quite aggressive and negative, constantly campaigning for office policies to be changed to her liking, complaining, and generally being overbearing. She changes her personality like a chameleon, showing up as the person she feels will best get her where she wants to go.

She’s been aggressively friendly with me, for example, overwhelmingly complimentary, insistent with my time and attention, even house hunting for me to move into her neighborhood. But it began to become clear that I was being used as a power play for her to try and team up against the rest of the more senior partners. I’ve taken to hiding from her in the office in an attempt to distance myself because she’s using my name in the private meetings that she constantly calls with the administration as a way to add weight to her complaints. And now I have admin coming to me asking me why I’m unhappy. I feel very uncomfortable in her presence like my skin crawls because she’s manipulative and singularly focused on her goal of climbing the power ladder.

When I speak up against her strong opinions, she drops the overly friendly demeanor, like a snake shedding its skin. I fear that she’ll cut me down to get where she wants to go in the company. Any advice on how to handle an aggressive ladder climber like this without getting taken out in the process? Thanks for your help. Signed, The Unwilling Accomplice.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:31] Whew. This is pretty bad and we’ve seen a lot of red flags here just in this short letter, all of which indicates to me that you’re dealing with somebody who is extremely manipulative and possibly has some sort of personality disorder, although that type of thing is, of course, impossible to diagnose both because I haven’t seen nor met this woman. And because I’m an Internet hack who is by no means any sort of doctor or psychologist anyway, but one of the main issues here is that people who are hyper-competitive try to beat out everyone and someone who is actively undermining others generally wants to see other people fail. They might not even care about the outcome of the work or the project or anything like that. They care more about how they will look in the end regardless of what actually happens.

Also, this whole lobbying for policies to be changed to their liking even though she just started, that’s another red flag. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but she’s either hyper self-centered or is testing to see who they can push around in management and in the office before going for something bigger. So who’s going to be a pushover? Who’s going to fight me on stuff? Who has the real power to make change? Who are the influential people in the office? Like I think she may be testing for that. I seldom advise anyone to avoid someone at work or at home. But I think, in this case, you may be best served distancing yourself from her in any way that you can, and making stronger allegiances with the other people in the office.

[00:20:50] Take the temperature of your other coworkers to see if they’re experiencing similar things and will actually talk to you about this. They might think since you guys started at the same time and that she’s running around trying to help you move into her neighborhood, they might think you and this other new colleague are BFF. You know, you guys are best friends. That might even be how she’s framing things. Well, it sounds like it, right? “Angela and I, we both hate this. Angela and I, we hate that.”

Jason DeFillippo: [00:21:14] That’s why the admin is coming to her and said, “Hey, why do you hate everything?” She’s like, “I don’t. I don’t. Not me.”

Jordan Harbinger: [00:21:19] She’s probably saying, “I know that so-and-so isn’t going to tell you this. So I’ll tell you on behalf of her that this is bad,” because she doesn’t want to say, “I want this change.” Because she seems bossy and nosy. She’s using your name to do that. You’re going to end up paying some of the price so you have to get ahead of this, unfortunately. You’ve got to make sure you don’t get lumped in with her. I also think you should document everything that’s happening here. Keep a log of the issue. Write down important conversations and events that illustrate your argument. Don’t do it on a work computer or work machine. You really need to have that private and you need to have access to it if anything happens with your work machine. You don’t want to have it like in your work docs or something like that.

Keep a log. Write down important conversations. Any events that illustrate your argument include the time, date, and names of anybody else who was present. And once you’ve been in the office for a bit, you can approach the bosses about this directly. In fact, you might even want to do that earlier. Keep everything in writing in email, just so everything is clear to you and you can find conversations if you need them later. The last thing you want to do is go in, speak with your boss, and then there’s no record of it. You can go in and speak with your boss, but then send a follow-up email saying, “Just wanted to follow up on our meeting. Here’s what we discussed,” because you don’t want somebody to misremember later or say, “Yeah, we never talked about this.” You want to be able to go, “Yes, we did. February 12th, 2020. I sent you a follow-up email three hours after our in-person meeting took place.” You’ve got to have that. You can find those conversations later in your email and you can even BCC an out-of-work email address, although you should probably be careful because you might have policies against that, especially if you work in healthcare. There could be some sort of like HIPAA thing where you can’t send stuff off the system.

[00:23:00] I would also try in any way that you can to create strong relationships with your bosses probably goes without saying, but you can schedule regular meetings with him or her to discuss your performance. This will enable you to get closer to your boss. They’ll see that you care about your job, you care about the career, you want what’s best for the company. It really depends on your boss’ schedule, how often you meet, but once, twice a month at the least, I would say keep things professional. Make sure you have your allies in the office. If it does come time to confront the boss, like if nobody’s doing anything about this person in the workplace, you’re going to want to have to, you might have to call in reinforcements so that you don’t look like you just have a personal beef with her. All this though is added stress in a new job that you really don’t need. I’m sorry you’re dealing with this and hopefully together with the other folks, your other colleagues, you can get rid of this toxic co-worker and get on with your career. I don’t think you can work in a place like this for long. This person’s just going to try to undercut everyone.

[00:23:52] Where were we talking, Jason, where they did an experiment? Was it even an experiment? There was an anecdote. Maybe it was in an interview. There was a really old sales guy and he started working from home and everyone in the office started chatting and hanging out and going to drinks. Maybe it was another Feedback Friday question.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:08] Maybe it’s a Feedback Friday. Yeah, this is ringing a bell.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:10] And then the guy came back to work and then it was like everybody started closing their office doors. Nobody started hanging out because of his negative attitude. This is somebody who was accidentally negative, I think just by habit. This person in this particular letter that we’re currently reading, she’s deliberately undercutting people.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:26] Which is far worse. She’s a snake.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:28] She’s a snake.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:29] Yeah. Watch your back on with somebody like this.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:31] Definitely.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:34:32] Don’t leave your drinks on attended. Don’t let her know where your children are going to be and lock the doors.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:38] Yeah. Hide your kids. Hide your wife. Because this is a bad person

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:41] It’s some Fatal Instinct.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:42] Yeah, yeah, it does —

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:44] Hopefully, the rabbits are okay.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:45] Yeah. Fatal Attraction. She sounds like a bunny boiler.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:48] Yes. She’s a bunny boiler.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:24:49] Yes. All right. What’s next?

Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:52] Hey there, Jordan. I’m a 17-year-old student from Denmark and I recently took your Six-Minute Networking course. I thoroughly enjoyed it, and especially the Airtable.

[00:25:00] Do you want to explain what the Airtable is, Jordan?

Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:02] Airtable is a tool that you can use for a lot of different things, but we had someone teach us how to use it as a CRM, so we use Contactually, but it’s a little pricier for some people. And so some people have been using Airtable to keep track of when they spoke with someone last. When it’s time to hit that person up again, and I think we have instructions on how to use this in the Six-Minute Networking course, we linked to a video of somebody using Airtable as a CRM for this reason.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:25:28] All right. Moving on.

[00:25:29] It’s been proving itself beneficial. Not only has it made me a lot better at keeping up with my siblings who live in other countries but also takes the stress out of the stress-inducing “Who have I forgotten to text recently?” question. Due to my current state of being a high school student, there were, however, a few tasks that were a bit more difficult to follow, like pruning my network. My question is a bit more focused on how I might get some contacts in the industry I hope to work in later. I have a passion for chemistry, specifically biochem. And I’m a bit unsure about how to approach anyone in this field as it ostensibly seems to be rather esoteric.

[00:26:02] Big words for a high schooler.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:26:04] Yeah, a foreign high schooler too.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:26:06] Must be in Denmark.

[00:26:08] I have two ideas, but I would love to hear what you think of them and maybe you even have a better one. The first idea would be to pick out a few articles and projects from local universities and professors that I like and simply email them about questions regarding said projects and hope that by some stroke of serendipity, a fruitful contact emerges. For my second — perhaps more feasible idea — I’ve signed up for a so-called chemistry camp at a local university where I’ll meet professors and or students with whom I could potentially bond and establish relations with. It would be great to get your feedback on this and potentially hear what other things I could do during high school to dig my well as it were before I’ll need it later in life. Best regards, A Young Fan.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:26:47] First of all, it makes me feel a little bad that this person is a better writer than I am in English, and it’s their second language and they’re in high school, so — “Screw you, young, man. Get off my lawn.”

Jason DeFillippo: [00:26:59] “Damn you, Denmark and your education.”

Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:01] Yeah, no kidding. Geez. Well, well done. So I’m glad to see that you’re getting into the show at such a young age. Of course, you’re smart you listened to my show. You’re way ahead of the game, especially with the Six-Minute Networking course and everything, and cold callings like reaching out to those professors and just sort of hoping through a stroke of serendipity that a fruitful contact emerges. That’s going to be pretty tough. It doesn’t work nearly as well as the second more feasible idea that you had, namely putting yourself in a position to meet and network with the professors. Now you can do both things. Just bear in mind that your response rate might be zero with the first one, which is fine. Just don’t only do the first one because your response rate might be zero. Once you’re in touch with these professors from your chemistry camps, stay in touch by keeping an email contact with them over time and pinging them once every 90 days or so. I think that’s probably going to be enough for these sorts of loose professional connections. Put them in your Airtable, whatever it is you need to do to remember to do that.

[00:28:00] And by the way, for those of you listening right now, you’re not sure what we’re talking about in terms of the Airtable. Again, that’s in Six-Minute Networking, which you can find at It’s a free course. Go ahead and jump in there.

[00:28:13] Also, ask the professors for introductions to people working in the industry, especially people that have jobs that sound interesting to you. It doesn’t mean you have to get a job in that company. It doesn’t mean you have to get a job in that field or with that person. Just get around people working in the industry or adjacent to the industry that are interesting to you. That’s the key and the way that you can get those intros is probably through those professors because they’re going to have former students that have since graduated and gotten jobs, and they can probably reach out on your behalf if they’re in touch with any of those folks.

So keep in touch with those people as well and see if after you build a little bit of rapport, maybe you can shadow them at work for a day. That’s a big ask. So you might want to meet at their office first to get a feel for the work in the industry, and then make the ask if they’re comfortable with it and you’re comfortable with them. See if you can shadow them at work for a day. Ask what they wish they’d done at your age or slightly older to get and stay prepared for their career. So since you’re in high school, they might say, “Oh, you’re on the right track.” That’s not really a helpful answer. I mean, it’s nice, but it’s not very helpful. So then if they say you’re on the right track now, say, “Okay, then what should I be doing in university that’s going to help me get on the right track?” And they might say, “Oh, you’re really going to need this. I wish I’d taken more classes about this, that I wish I’d gotten an internship.” This is how you start to get things like internships. Get your toes in the water and build contacts and connections in the industry.

Or you might just find out you don’t like chemistry or whatever it is you were studying at all, and then you find out before you end up with your first job and a four-year degree in that particular industry. Then take those people’s advice. Then when you do take advice, by the way, report back to the person who gave you the advice about how you applied their advice, which will then encourage them to keep in touch and continue to give advice and share wisdom.

[00:30:00] I wrote an article about this. You can find it at It’s called How to Ask for Advice the Right Way. [Ed. Note: It’s actually How to Ask for Advice (and Make the Most of It)!] And part of that at the end of the article there is about putting advice into action, then letting the person know you actually put it into action. Giving people advice is great, but I think a lot of us who give advice, we realize that most people are never going to use it, and that can be a little disheartening. So when you give advice, someone follows it and then shows you, it really is rewarding and it encourages me or whoever to stay in touch with that person. You feel an affinity for them and you might even give them more help and more advice. So you’re doing it right so far. That’s at and definitely keep diving into Six-Minute Networking and doing that and keep in touch. It sounds like you have a good strategy here. Again, you’re way ahead of the game. Good for you. Now keep your lead.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:30:52] We’ll be right back with more Feedback Friday right after this.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:30:56] This episode is sponsored in part by HostGator. Do you have a dream you haven’t started? Are you sitting in a job that you said was going to be your safety net and now has turned into a purgatory of nightmares? Is the only thing that brings you joy closing your eyes and pretending you’re Jack Ryan until Judy from human resources wakes you up and reminds you that napping is offensive to people who have sleeping disorders? There is only one way to go after your dreams. Get started. And the first step, at least in this hypothetical, is making a website, whether for your online business, your writing, or to sell your art, everyone needs a website. HostGator has helped thousands of show fans get their business off the ground, display their work, and ensure their place on the Internet isn’t dictated solely by search engine results or social media. We call HostGator mandatory Internet insurance that everyone should have. Jason.

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Jordan Harbinger: [00:32:00] This episode is also sponsored by Undercover Tourist. Planning a vacation can be hard. It can be overwhelming. I’ve just don’t even do it. I let my wife do it, and that’s a highly recommended strategy, but if you’re the one that has to do the planning, well, the buck stops with you, and you’ll want to know how to save money and save time. If you’re starting to think about spring break, you can go to a theme park, and I love Undercover Tourist. These guys, they have great ticket prices for theme parks. You save a ton. It’s the real ticket. It’s not like a fake one that has a bunch of blackout dates or something weird like that. They’re the exact same tickets to theme parks, you know, and love for less. There’s no catch on that. Save up to 145 bucks on each theme park ticket, which is pretty significant, especially when you think of the savings for a family of four or six people.

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Jordan Harbinger: [00:33:29] This episode is sponsored in part by ZipRecruiter. Kodable founder Grechen Huebner experienced how challenging hiring can be after unsuccessfully searching for a new game artist to grow with her education tech company. Hiring people is a humongous pain — I know that firsthand. I think we’ve gotten pretty lucky with the exception of a couple of production people.

Jason DeFillippo: Yeah, I would say.

Jordan Harbinger: But then Grechen switched to ZipRecruiter and saw an immediate difference. And you can see that difference too, by signing up for free at ZipRecruiter doesn’t depend on candidates finding you. It finds them for you, and they have this powerful matching technology — which I don’t think they probably needed to trademark, but you know what? Why not? You’ve got lawyers, use them — Grechen found it easier to focus on the best hires because of their screening process and then found the right one. In fact, after posting her job on ZipRecruiter, Grechen said she was honestly surprised she found qualified applicants so quickly and hired a new game artist in less than two weeks. Game artist seems like a random job. I don’t know how you would even start finding someone like that. Maybe on ZipRecruiter actually. Jason.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:34:30] with results like that, it’s no wonder that four out of five employers who post on ZipRecruiter get a quality candidate within the first day. ZipRecruiter, the smartest way to hire. See why ZipRecruiter is effective for businesses of all sizes. Try ZipRecruiter for free at our web address That’s

[00:34:50] Thank you for supporting the show. Your support of our advertisers keeps us on the air. To learn more and get links to all the great discounts you just heard, visit Now back to the show for the conclusion of Feedback Friday.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:35:06] All right. What’s next?

Jason DeFillippo: [00:35:07] Hi to all the Js. I’m currently a full-time administrative assistant at a university hospital, and I’m also working on getting a master’s degree part-time in mental health counseling. I started in this position about eight months ago, and it’s perfect for my needs as a student. There’s a good amount of downtime that allows me to catch up on reading and do homework assignments while on the job. To be clear, I’m not slacking off. I’ve gotten many compliments on my job performance and often exceed expectations regarding the quality of work and timelines.

Since I often complete most of my schoolwork on the job, I have more free time to spend on volunteering and my other part-time job working with folks with disabilities. I also have time to spend with my partner and doing things I enjoy like concerts and weekend trips. A couple of weeks ago, my boss discussed moving me into a data analyst role in the next few months pending funding and things like that. I told him that I was interested, depending on how it all shakes out. The job would likely come with a significant pay raise and will give me more research experience for when and if I eventually want to go on to get a PhD.

My current position pays enough to live on plus some, but not enough to make meaningful contributions to retirement and other savings. However, I’m worried that if I take the job, I’ll be giving up an ideal situation with all my downtime for schoolwork, should I give up my cushy job for more experience in higher pay or should I stick around in my current position that allows me plenty of time outside of work in school. I should add that regardless of which choice I make, I’ll be leaving the job after completing the master’s program in about two years. Thank you for all that you do. Signed, Freedom or Finances.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:36:38] So this of course depends. The answer to this depends on what you want. Now, right now, you have a ton of free time, but you have less money, but it doesn’t sound like not having as much money is affecting your quality of life. So you really don’t need that money. Now, you could invest it, you could save it. Of course, there’s always a benefit to that, but it sounds like since this is a temporary job for two years, that it’s not going to be a tremendous difference no matter what you decide to do. However, you can make more money later. You can’t really get more time once you start to build responsibilities and get into a different type of career. So I’m, I’m leaning towards that. Now, that’s a big question because if you are planning, maybe you do need that experience, that research experience to help you in your PhD program, but make sure you’re going to need it before sacrificing the quality of life just for something that you might not actually need.

[00:37:26] So if you think there’s a one percent chance you’ll go for a PhD, definitely don’t jump to get a bunch of experience that you have a 99 percent chance of not using. If you’re 50/50 and you’re on the fence. Then you’ve got to weigh, do I really need this research experience or is it just something that it sounds like I need? And there’s a lot of things like that, especially in academia. The currency of the new rich is free time to do what you actually enjoy. And right now, like I said before, you’re living a pretty rich life — getting your study and work done, having extra time to do what you love. You can step things up and gain experience and more money, but only do so if you think you will actually need it. Again, it’s like those people who get extra college degrees like, “Oh, I need a minor.” “Why? Because you can get one.” I mean, you don’t know. No employer is going to care. Unless you’re majoring in Russian studies and you’re minoring in, I don’t know, Asian studies and you’re working at a think tank.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:38:17] Yeah. I’m also thinking that this research is falling into his lap right now. Is this the right timing for his PhD? Can you just get it later and spend this time on school — just because it’s given to him right now and he can get some experience from it, Is this the right timing? Because it doesn’t seem like he would normally be going after this. Because if he did need it, he would be going after it. This just fell in his lap, but I think he’s like trying to shoehorn this into his research for PhD.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:38:40] That’s an interesting point. Yeah. Because he didn’t say, “I’m gunning for the job and I finally get a chance to do it but — ” It just sounds like, “Oh, I got offered an upgrade and a raise. Maybe if I decide to get a PhD, this will come in handy.” It’s like, “Whoa, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa, Whoa.”

Jason DeFillippo: [00:38:54] Slow your roll there.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:38:55] Yeah. It’s like saying, yeah, slow your roll there. Exactly. Good call. What I would do if I were you, is game out each path and decide what you want to do and what you need to do based on your career path. Definitely don’t give up your free time and quality of life just to get an advantage that might end up actually being imaginary because you don’t plan to use it. I busted my butt and always went the extra mile in school just for the sake of working hard, just to work hard. I’m all for a great work ethic. It’s never really done me wrong, but I think that you need to have a strategy in mind. Otherwise, you’re just killing yourself for no reason other than force of habit and because that’s what your parents would expect of you or, you know, your colleagues would expect of you or whatever.

[00:39:36] There are a lot of people that in law school, they would write a summary of each case. We learned how to do in the first year of law school and it’s so that you can get the good bits out of each case. There were people doing that for years and I would go, “Why are you doing that?” And they would go, “Well, I just feel like I have to,” and I go, “Do you feel like it helps you?” And they’d be like, “Not really, but I feel like I have to do it.” Ridiculous. They’re just doing work for the sake of doing work and it doesn’t actually give them any advantage, but they were spending hours doing this every single day.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:40:04] It is a fine skill. If you want to be a podcast show notes person though, they could —

Jordan Harbinger: [00:40:08] That’s true.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:40:08] They truly leverage that nowadays.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:40:09] Yeah, that’s true. That’s true. We are hiring for law students that want to do show notes. That’s not really true. Don’t email me about that, but there’s nothing wrong with a raise and better experience. It’s just that you need to want to do this for your career. Not just do it because that’s supposedly the sensible thing to do. All right. Last but not least.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:40:29] Hello, Triple J. I’m 28 years old and have been happily married for almost nine years and in the military for over 10 years. The past few years I’ve been growing more and more unfulfilled with my current job, I’ve always struggled with deciding what path I really wanted to take with my career. I tossed several ideas around, but nothing ever really stuck. That was until about five months ago, my wife and I had been trying for a child for three years with no success. Around August of last year, she finally became pregnant and we were ecstatic, but the excitement was short-lived. Going into the eighth week, we lost the baby. After that, we had both accepted that we just weren’t going to be parents and we would take some time to focus on our careers. It was around this time that I decided to pursue an idea of becoming a diver. The age cutoff is 30 years, so it was a now or never kind of thing.

I began training every day and absorbed myself into preparing for the physical and mental challenges ahead. Well, my wife looked into pursuing her career aspirations. About a month later to both of our surprises, my wife had become pregnant again. We were honestly just dumbstruck at first. After the initial shock settled, we were both unbelievably grateful and happy to have another chance. My wife chose to hold off on pursuing her career goals while she was pregnant, and I chose to continue with my workout routine. Fast forward to now, and I have kept up with the daily workouts and can see significant changes in my physique and performance. The more I learned about the job, the more solidified I am in thinking that it’s the career path that would satisfy me most and would provide a lot of opportunity for when I leave the military. The trouble is that the training is about six months in total. So by the time I would be able to go, I would either have to leave my wife alone in the latter months of her pregnancy and likely miss the birth of my child or miss a six-month chunk of the first year.

She definitely has her understandable concerns and worries. But she also knows that it’s something that I really want and she’s supportive. At the same time, I feel like us having a kid together was a prior obligation that I would be failing to fully live up to if I left. Well, I know that the birth is only one small moment in the grand scheme of raising a child, it seems like a big one to miss, but would missing a full six months of their early life be any better? I’m afraid that I may on some level resent our child if I don’t pursue the opportunity while I can or best case scenario. I just always wonder what could have been. Am I making a mistake by choosing my career over my wife and future child, if only for a short period? Signed, Daddy Diver. PS, It’s a boy.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:42:53] Wow. Well, this is a really tough one. First of all, huge congratulations. I mean, that’s a big deal. Both the career change and having a child — it’s going to be a big year for you, man. It’s super important here to make these decisions together with your wife. See what she thinks of the whole thing. Obviously, the key to relationship happiness goes back to communication here. Missing the birth of your child is a big deal, but so is not being able to get the career you want because you weren’t able to train for it. I think training to be a diver as a civilian is probably impossible or damn close and if you’re in the military right now, the last thing you want to do is re-up for another four years or whatever it is to get to the diver training. I mean, it doesn’t make sense. So you want to make sure you get the training that you need. Only one of these things. Missing the birth of your child and training for a career, one of those things is likely to impact your quality of life for the next few years as well. Yeah, it’s going to be a bummer to miss that, but you know, well, you’ll survive. You won’t wake up every day wondering why you had to take a job that you don’t want. Sometimes we need to sacrifice in order to make things better for our family in the future. And I think people will understand or they should.

[00:43:59] But again, only if you really communicate and it doesn’t come across like you just choose and you don’t care and you’re not worried about it. And I don’t think your wife would think that anyway. I think you’re right. You might end up resenting it if you didn’t get the training you needed to move forward. And candidly, you could have a midwife or a doula or someone close to your wife actually FaceTime and or film the birth — it might be a little weird, but you know. If you really want to see it, you can. I know that’s weird actually, but you’ll feel at least a little bit like you were there, which will help especially maybe you can FaceTime and talk with your wife before, during, and after. Birth isn’t this big dramatic thing. You might not know that because I certainly thought it was like you see on TV and it’s not. Usually, your wife just has some cramps, goes and takes a nap, gets up, the cramps get worse, and then she realizes she’s in labor and then she’s having a tough time, but it’s not like this screaming, rush them down in the stretcher through the hospital, clear the way. It really isn’t anything like that, generally. So you can FaceTime and chat, and then every few minutes when she gets a contraction, you’re going to see, you’ll know.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:45:03] He needs to get one of those Edward Snowden robots that can follow her around the house. You know, like with an iPad and a camera on top.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:45:09] She’ll love that. She’ll love that. Again, it’s not the same, but the timing isn’t ideal. And that’s really the whole issue here. So I’d also see if there’s anyone who can help your wife while the baby is small. What about your family? Her family? The birth of a child brings family closer together, and if you can’t be there, at least she’ll be taken care of. I don’t have more details here, but of course, that would be helpful if you can get someone to help out your wife in those early months. And yeah, you’ll miss a lot. You really will. You’re going to want to do FaceTime and calls with the family, with the kid, with your wife and the baby. Hopefully, you can do those regularly because then at least the kid will kind of like know who you are.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:45:46] Yeah, and I mean, it’s a six-month training. Does he not get weekends? Can you not like, fly home for a little bit here and there? It’s like —

Jordan Harbinger: [00:45:52] Good point.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:45:53] Where is he going? Like Kamchatka to go train to be a diver?

Jordan Harbinger: [00:45:57] I mean, maybe they fly you to a faraway naval base and you don’t get to just take off. I really don’t know. Hard to say, but yeah, you’ll miss a lot. FaceTime is going to be key here. Hopefully, you can do that. You’ll almost certainly be sleeping better since you’re not at home with a newborn, so there’s a positive on that. Not that I recommend missing out if you can avoid it, but hey, on the bright side, you’re not going to be waking up every hour because somebody is screaming in your ear. Congrats on the opportunity. Huge, huge congrats on the incoming addition to the family. It sounds like you’ve tried really hard for a long time, so what a blessing. Congratulations.

[00:46:28] Life Pro Tip here. This is a little bit less of a solid life hack, but it’s some good wisdom that I’ve been following for a while. Real wealth is not having to go to meetings, not having to spend time with jerks, not being locked into status games, not feeling like you have to say yes to things you don’t want to do, not worrying about others claiming your time and energy. So real wealth is about freedom. Money can help achieve these things, but there are plenty of people I know who make loads of money, but they are nowhere near as free. They have to go to tons of meetings that they don’t want to do. They deal with people that they don’t get along with. They’re always jockeying for status. There are things that they can’t do because their boss or their business partners might call them in to do something at any moment. That’s not really as valuable as having freedom. So make choices that get you that kind of freedom, that kind of wealth, not just choices that will help you make money.

[00:47:19] No recommendation this week because we’ve been productive doing other stuff. Too busy. Sorry folks. Hope you all enjoyed the show today. I want to thank everyone that wrote in this week. A link to the show notes for this episode can be found at And a shout out to John M. Carr. “Thanks for ruining other podcasts for me,” he says, “I’ve tried to listen to some other shows that are specific to my industry and it’s so obvious they have not done the research or put in the time to do a good job.” Well, thanks. That’s the idea. We want to make you hate everybody else’s show. That is what we are gunning for here, for sure.

[00:47:52] Go back and check out Michael Yon and Admiral McRaven if you haven’t heard those episodes yet, and if you want to know how we managed to get all these great folks in our network, well, it’s about systems and tiny habits. Check out our Six-Minute Networking course, which is free over at Don’t kick the can down the road. Do not postpone this. You got to dig the well before you get thirsty. You’ve heard me say that a lot. There’s a book by that title. It’s really catchy, so you know it’s true. These drills are designed to take a few minutes a day. Ignore them at your own peril. Again, it’s all free at I’m on Instagram and Twitter at @JordanHarbinger. It’s a great way to engage with the show and videos of our interviews are at

Jason DeFillippo: [00:48:34] And you can check out my other tech podcast, Grumpy Old Geeks. We discussed what went wrong on the Internet and who’s to blame along with cybersecurity apps, gadgets, books in more. That is Grumpy Old Geeks.

Jordan Harbinger: [00:48:44] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. This episode was produced by Jen Harbinger, edited by Jase Sanderson, show notes for the episode by Robert Fogarty, and music by Evan Viola. Keep sending in those questions to Our advice and opinions, and those of our guests are their own. And yes, I’m a lawyer, but I am not your lawyer. So do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. And remember, we rise by lifting others, so share the show with those you love, and even those you don’t. If you found this episode useful, please share it with somebody who can use the advice that we gave here today. We’ve got lots more in store for 2020. I’m very excited to bring it to you. In the meantime, do your best to apply what you hear on the show, so you can live what you listen, and we’ll see you next time.

Jason DeFillippo: [00:49:27] The Adam Carolla Show is the number one daily downloaded podcast in the world, and you have got to check it out. Catch up with some of Adam’s latest interviews featuring James Carville, Pauly Shore, and Rob Huebel. Adam’s bringing you his daily rants, antiques, and musings with a side of comedy. Be sure to subscribe on Spotify, PodcastOne, Apple Podcasts, and many other podcast apps so you can get new episodes every week.

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