You’ve never thought of yourself as a doormat, but you’ve just found it easier to meet people halfway and go with the flow rather than waste your energy on something stupid or trivial. So how do you pick your battles — especially while everyone who’s been following the advice of medical professionals to stay home during the pandemic is feeling a little cooped up and abrasive right now? 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 firstname.lastname@example.org. Now let’s dive in!
On This Week’s Feedback Friday, We Discuss:
- How do you choose your battles and resolve conflict without being a doormat — especially while everyone’s a bit on edge during this long, long pandemic?
- You feel you should have strong stances on certain issues, but you don’t want your bias to stop you from weighing the evidence that informs those stances. Is it wrong to not take a stand on issues because you honestly don’t have all the information?
- Your friend married an African man with old-world views of gender roles, so she works full time and maintains the house because he won’t help with “women’s” work. Quarantine has almost broken her. How can she get him to stop thinking in the 19th century and join her in the 21st?
- You’re an introvert about to move to an unfamiliar city to take up an exciting, challenging new job with a bigger paycheck. What are the most important things to keep in mind during this hard reset?
- You’re a jack of all trades with no clear idea of what to do with your life, and you tend to get bored after doing one thing for a while. What might you do to focus and choose a path that will keep you occupied over the long haul?
- Your job hunt lost momentum as the reaction to COVID-19 started gearing up. You know this pandemic will pass, but what should you do to find the gainful employment you want after this is over?
- Life Pro Tip: When you have to go out and press elevator buttons and other switches, use a lighter — then light the lighter to disinfect itself. No need to waste tissues or gloves!
- Recommendation of the Week: One Child Nation
- A quick shout out to Josh the Tradesman!
- Have any questions, comments, or stories you’d like to share with us? Drop us a line at email@example.com!
- Connect with Jordan on Twitter at @JordanHarbinger and Instagram at @jordanharbinger.
- Connect with Jason on Twitter at @jpdef and Instagram at @JPD, and check out his other show: Grumpy Old Geeks.
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In This Is A Collect Call from Sing Sing, John J. Lennon hopes to find the connecting tissue between people in mainstream culture and in the subculture of prison — humanizing who we are and why. It’s the closest most listeners will ever get to being inside an American prison. Listen on PodcastOne or your podcast player of choice!
Resources from This Episode:
- Brian Keating | Losing the Nobel Prize, TJHS 347
- Thomas Kostigen | Hacking Planet Earth, TJHS 348
- How to Stay Productive Under Quarantine by Jordan Harbinger
- The Benjamin Franklin Effect: The Surprising Psychology of How to Handle Haters by Maria Popova, Brain Pickings
- Spencer Greenberg | Cultivating Clearer Thinking for Cloudy Times, TJHS 136
- 87% of Egyptian Men Believe Women’s Basic Role Is to Be Housewives: Study, Egypt Independent
- How to Start Over in a New City by Jordan Harbinger
- People in China Use Toothpicks and Lighters to Avoid Pressing Lift Buttons amid Coronavirus Outbreak, South China Morning Post
- One Child Nation
- What Jobs Will Exist in the New Economy? | Feedback Friday, TJHS 340
Transcript for How to Pick Your Battles Without Being a Doormat - Feedback Friday (Episode 349)
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 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 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 Brian Keating. He's a Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of California. He leads a $100-million observatory, which is just way more responsibility than I would ever want for myself. He's a jet pilot, author of the hilariously titled losing the Nobel prize. Science and technology are the foundations of a first-world society, which we purport to have. Yet in today's age, scientific illiteracy is somehow celebrated rather than castigated. Never has science been so important and yet so poorly understood by the general public.
[00:01:05] We also had Thomas Kostigen. Climate change is a major threat to the planet. No surprise there. But while most solutions revolve around recycling or government action, Thomas Kostigen has some different ideas from lasers that blast clouds to create rainfall, to floating cloud machines over the ocean, to artificial trees. That actually sucks carbon out of the atmosphere at a million times the rate of natural trees. This episode almost sounds like science fiction. Only some of these ideas could actually make a huge difference in the planet we leave to our children or potentially have devastating consequences that leave us wishing we'd never messed with Mother Nature in the first place.
[00:01:45] I also write every so often on the blog, the latest posts are about being productive at home, being productive in quarantine. So make sure you've had a look and listen there to all that. If you don't know where the articles are, they are on the website at jordanharbinger.com/articles. And we have a brand new website. So if you have seen any bugs on there, let me know because there's a lot of stuff that works sometimes. It doesn't work on other devices or it doesn't work on a certain kind of Android web browser. Let us know. We're giving away Five-Minute Journals if you find a bug. Not like a typo, you know, if you find that, send that to me too. But if you find a bug, something that legit doesn't work, that hasn't been reported before, I will send you a Five-Minute Journal, which is a fun little journal where you write in it for, yes, five minutes every day in the morning and at night. And it's kind of a unique concept to run by my friend Alex Ikonn. So let me know on firstname.lastname@example.org. You can send any bugs you find there and let me know what you think of the new site. You can reach us at email@example.com if you want to write into Feedback Friday.
[00:02:39] And a lot of people have been asking me what I'm working on right now since we're all stuck at home. I've been working at home for 13 years as you heard on the episode we did about working from home. So mostly this is business as usual but I am working on my voice. I've been talking in the wrong place right on my throat, my whole life, and a little bit on the vocal fry, which I still do sometimes, and I'm fixing this. In fact, I'm giving away a package of voice lessons to someone who needs it. Maybe somebody who needs it for their job. Not like if you want to learn how to sing, but somebody who needs it for their job. Say you're giving presentations on Zoom all day and you realize your voice is getting sore or there's something wrong with your voice. Shoot me an email with your story. I'll have Jen pick a winner again, firstname.lastname@example.org. I'd love to give you a package of voice lessons from my voice coach.
[00:03:27] All right, Jason, what's the first thing out of the mailbag?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:03:29] Hey, J Squad, I'm a teacher, and recently I got chewed out by a parent who misinterpreted a reply I sent to her student as bullying her. For context, the student was reaching out about how I'd forgotten to publish the weekly lesson online. My reply was brief, a facepalm emoji and seriously. My reply is meant to convey that it was my fault for not hitting the publish button and that I can see how my concise reply could be misinterpreted. The fury I received from this woman was completely unexpected and over the top. I know it's stressful for everyone right now. So I wrote it off and simply explained and apologized for the confusion because I think it wasn't a battle worth fighting. A few days later, my principal checked in with me and said that she's that parent who hounds teachers over the smallest things, so I felt a lot better about just moving on. But as a result of this, I began to think about how I react to conflicts. How does one decide which battles to fight and which ones to just move on from? In this situation, I knew it would be just a lot easier to apologize and move on, but at the same time, I don't want to encourage behaviors like this, especially from adults. I've never thought of myself as a doormat, but I've just found it easier to meet people halfway and go with the flow rather than waste my energy on something stupid or trivial. The trouble is that often it's tough to know in the moment which route to take. And the last thing I want is for my emotions to get the better of me and I end up saying something stupid and adding fuel to the fire. So in a nutshell, how do you choose which battles to fight? What tips do you have for conflict resolution, whether online or in person, or are there books or podcasts you would recommend? How can I balance appeasing people so as not to waste my time without encouraging and reinforcing negative conflict behaviors? Sincerely, When Should the Gloves Come Off?
[00:05:18] Jordan Harbinger: [00:05:18] This one is great. Very teachable moments here. You're right and that most of these types of things aren't worth fighting for at all. For this parent, she needs to feel important from the sound of it, so she makes a big deal out of everything. Now, I could be wrong, of course, but usually, when people make a big deal out of little things, it's because they feel insignificant. So they try and get that significance somewhere else and often in the wrong way. And if you think of adults as children analyzing this becomes a little bit easier. For example, if a child said, you're bullying her friend when you clearly, or even not so clearly were not. And then after you said, "No, I'm not, here's my rationale." And then they just kept pressing the issue. You'd conclude that they just wanted attention and since they weren't getting it, they just kept the drama going. This is literally the same thing that's happening with this particular parent.
[00:06:05] So what I would do here is to apologize the first time, which is often a good idea when you don't know who you're dealing with and then ignore any future drama. This starves the attention seeker of oxygen, and since she has no real power here, she's likely to let it go and find someone else to bother. Now, she might have a temper tantrum first and go back to the principal like, "She's ignoring my email." But if they know that she's the problem parent, then they're just going to ignore it too, but likely she'll find somebody else to bother someone who's feeding back into her BS and her drama. The principal and other administration should shield you from this ideally. If they're doing their job, they should be protecting you from this kind of crap. There's nothing wrong with apologizing first and then letting it go. There's no doormat type behavior that I can see here.
[00:06:51] Option B, if someone like this is likely to be in your orbit for a while, you can't get away from them. You know, they work in your office, you've got their kid for the next five years because you have a small school, whatever. Give them attention, but reinforce positive behavior only. For example, using the Ben Franklin effect, not maybe in the response to her BS, but later on, you could ask for her advice on something. I wouldn't ask for her advice on classroom discipline or her own kid or anything. I would ask for her advice on something, maybe you know, she's into some particular activity. You can simply ignore any past beef. And ask her for her feedback on something because you value her opinion or whatever. Just be careful here as she's likely to give you feedback on things, but then she will probably become even more of an annoying friend, but she'll be more of an annoying friend than an enemy.
[00:07:42] I'd only do this if she keeps picking on you because it gives her attention, but only for positive behavior. And since she's addicted to significance and attention, she will likely not want to jeopardize the positive attention coming her way because she likely is not good at getting positive attention in the first place, which is why she relies on negative attention and drama as well. So to repeat here, you give this person attention, but then they cling to you, right? You've become magnetized but you're giving them positive attention and she's not giving you this negativity. She's going to start to really cling to you. This happens quite a bit, but it's better than somebody deciding that you're their enemy now and trying to take you down. So that's kind of the choice you have. Ideally, you're not dealing with them at all. But if you think you have a long-term relationship here against your will, then you can change the relationship in that way.
[00:08:33] But in the end, you're right, these people are not worth your time, so if you can apologize once and then ignore further drama, that is your best bet. If you cannot do that, then I recommend using the Ben Franklin effect described above to your advantage and getting her to actually like you. Just bear in mind that people addicted to validation and attention, they don't magically get better. And you could be getting feedback and positive attention from her for the rest of the school year for the rest of the decade if you have a small schoolhouse and you've got her kid from kindergarten to fifth grade. You could really be dealing with it, especially if the kid has siblings and then the little brothers coming into your classes. I mean, you could just really be in it now, but it sure beats getting yelled at, doesn't it?
[00:09:15] All right. What's next?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:09:16] Hello, Jordan, Jason, and Jen. I just listened to the episode cultivating clearer thinking for cloudy times with Spencer Greenberg, which was number 136. In the episode, you discussed fallacies and how to not submit to black and white thinking. I grew up in a conservative Christian home forming the same beliefs as my parents. In college, I was challenged to change critically and a lot of my beliefs have been undone. Now, I don't have many core beliefs because I always think I don't have all the information. My problem is I feel I should have strong stances on certain issues. On the other hand, I want to know the truth and I don't want my bias to stop me from hearing the truth. Is it wrong to not take a stand on issues because I honestly don't have all the information? Be well. Signed, Stuck in the Middle of the Road.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:10:02] By the way, that Spencer Greenberg episode is episode 136. We'll link to that in the show notes as well. Anyway, this is great. It sounds like not only did college challenge your beliefs but also replaced your beliefs with a starter set of critical thinking skills, pretty good ones. Instead of just replacing your strongly held religious beliefs with strongly held beliefs of some other kind. And we see that a lot actually in university. Often we lose one set of beliefs, especially strong beliefs or religious beliefs and/or religious beliefs and we simply replace them with other strongly held beliefs, or we just believe everything that we hear that comes our way. That's why you see often really conservative people go to university and then suddenly they're like the pothead, and then they're the whatever, and they get really into different things. That's normal for college, but often we then cling to different sorts of beliefs. That's why you see hardcore right-wingers become hardcore leftists or progressives become even more hardcore progressives because it's college. You really don't go the other way. But this is also one reason why people who leave strong religious cults or churches often believe in very strange things after leaving.
[00:11:11] So I don't know, Jason, if you've noticed this, but I know a lot of people who've left religion and then suddenly they believe in like UFOs and psychic powers and metaphysical bunk and other BS.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:11:21] Chemtrails .
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:22] Yeah. Have you seen this?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:11:23] Totally.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:11:23] It's like they leave this one set of beliefs and then they're like, "Oh my gosh, conspiracies and this and that and the other thing." My theory here, and I'm guessing this is something that other people see too, is that if you grow up with like this crazy foundation of metaphysical beliefs such as there's XYZ religious belief that you have to suspend your critical thinking to believe in a lot of ways, not all religion, but a lot of really conservative religions have like kind of crazy stuff going on in there. Of course, you leave and you go, "Oh, I don't believe in that anymore," but you still have the framework. Right? So that's why hardcore atheist countries like North Korea will still have some really, really similar religious beliefs about their leader. Like he's got magical powers and he can never die. Well, we're testing that one right now, and you know that he does this and this and this and this and that. He sees all, and it's like, it's very much a religion. It's just not called a religion because it's a religion of the state. And once we have a set of strongly held beliefs and they get challenged and fall away, there's a hole in our psyche and we strive to fill that gap often with the aforementioned other belief systems.
[00:12:31] And what I think you're feeling now is the need to believe something strongly so that you can take a stance on it because that is what you are used to doing. In other words, you feel that hole in your psyche, that hole in your beliefs. And the old you would have dug in your heels and taken a religious stance on an issue in accordance with your beliefs, with your version of the Bible. Now, you don't have that reaction, but you're feeling instinctively or habitually, I should say like you should. This is no different than any other emotional reaction. For example, if you're used to being around people who pick fights with you all the time. And then you leave those relationships behind, you'll tend to react that same way, that defensive way with your new partner or with your new circle of friends.
[00:13:15] Behaviors and habits change very slowly. This is no exception. And I think as time goes on and you're around people who don't resort to their religious beliefs, to back up every question in life, you won't also feel the need to take a hard stance on everything that comes your way. Eventually, the urge to fight things and dig in on an issue will subside. And actually, this is great that you're noticing this. I used to and still do form strong opinions quickly, and I used to dig in my heels. I now still form opinions quickly, but I don't necessarily dig in my heels. Thus, I have strong opinions that I hold loosely. Strong opinions loosely held is one of my personal mottos here. I think that's always a good trait and folks, especially the loosely held part.
[00:14:00] Moving forward, you'll probably notice that not forming strong opinions and blindly following them is actually one of the best qualities you can have as far as critical thinking is concerned. You're better able to take in information, learn, be wrong, and adjust your beliefs. Many people never actually get here. See, also your annoying sort of racist Uncle at every holiday who believes whatever his favorite political radio talk show host says without question, and seemingly without thinking. So don't be Uncle Frank. Just don't. So congratulations. Sounds like you've unchained your mind and belief system a bit here, which is admirable. Not an easy thing to do.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:14:40] This is Feedback Friday. We'll be right back after this.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:14:44] This episode is sponsored in part by Motley Fool. Motley Fool has a Stock Advisor in each month. Tom and David choose one new stock recommendation, which comes with a full analysis and a risk profile. And from their hundreds of official recommendations, Tom and David choose 10 best buys now every month, which they think are the most timely opportunities from their past recommendations. And they win tons of awards on this stuff. They do pretty well. They picked Netflix a million years ago, which is up like 19,000 percent would have been a pretty good perch back in the day. I think Tom's picks are up 136 percent. David's picks are up 461 percent. So you know, maybe just listen to David for now. I don't know.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:15:23] Maybe, maybe David is the guy we should listen to.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:15:25] David's crushing it. So it's a great way to learn about investing. I'm not trying to say like you can beat the market. You can learn about investing is really where it's at. And a lot of people are worried about this right now. A lot of people are taking the time stuck at home to look at investing and get some guidance when it comes to this, instead of just falling for crap that they see online from charlatan. So Jason, tell them where they can check out the Motley Fool Stock Advisor.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:15:50] To check out the Motley Fool Stock Advisor, go to fool.com/jordan. That's F-O-O-L.com/jordan and try it out for just $99. That's just $1.90 a week. For $99, you get one year of unlimited access, and if you're not satisfied, just cancel within 30 days. That's fool.com/jordan
Jordan Harbinger: [00:16:11] This episode is also sponsored by Grammarly. I did not really get this tool until I started using it. So you can really find differences in grammar as they say. Grammar is the difference between helping your Uncle Jack off a horse. And well, if there's another way you could read that, I'll let you figure that one out for yourself. Whether you're writing a professional report or a personal email, it can be hard to get the words right. You might not hyphenate something. You're checking for commas and spacing and periods and all this other stuff. Grammarly comes in to help you write confidently. And I'm a decent writer, but I find all kinds of little things where I'm like, "Oh, I didn't know that was hyphenated. Oh, I didn't realize that this is a better word choice here." Grammarly Premium gives you advanced feedback on the tone of what you're writing, the word choice, punctuation and more. And I really find it useful, it works in Google Docs. It works in emails. It works pretty much everywhere when you install the browser extension. It's really, really handy. Jason.
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[00:17:18] Thanks for listening and supporting the show. To learn more about our sponsors and get links to all the great discounts you just heard, visit jordanharbinger.com/deals. 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 jordanharbinger.com/subscribe. Now let's hear some more of your questions here on Feedback Friday.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:17:44] All right. Jason, what's next?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:17:46] Hi guys. I have a female friend who married an African man with very traditional old world views of gender roles. She even converted to Islam to become Muslim as part of their union. She's juggling a full-time job with two young kids and all the housework, shopping, cooking, cleaning, et cetera, because he refuses to help with "women's work". She makes more money than he does, but he still questions or purchases as if she needs his permission to do almost anything. This has been wearing her out over the years, especially as the flame dies. But now with everyone at home under COVID isolation, she's broken. Recently due to his financial criticisms, she decided to take the full financial burden of maintaining the household just to avoid the noise. She feels like she's up a creek without a paddle. She recently engaged with a counselor, but felt let down by the lack of tangible advice and progress. Do you have any advice for someone in this situation? How does someone change or adapt to these old world views into a Canadian 21st century? Best, With a Little Help From My Friends.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:18:49] Well, yikes. I got some bad news for you. This isn't something she can solve if she is not interested if the husband is not interested. This is not her problem. I mean, it's a problem for her. It's not her problem to solve. She's got a job. She converted to a very conservative version of religion for him. She does all the work and she takes all the blow back. In his world, he's right and she has to do what he says. And also he's got it pretty good I would imagine according to him. He doesn't have to worry about making money because his wife's got it covered. He doesn't have to do any housework. He doesn't have to raise the kids. He can go hang out with his buddies. Confronting him with the truth, namely that she's the one making the money and that he's stuck in the 19th or previous century, that is only going to emasculate him, big time.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:19:33] Can we just call this guy, honestly, like King Douchebag, because that's really what I'm feeling right now. He feels like he's the king of his castle. She's doing all the work and he's doing nothing, and this whole thing angers me like you would not believe.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:19:47] Yeah. It sounds like he's got a pretty good setup. He basically forced this modern day woman to impart shoulder all of the burden and responsibility while also suspending her belief in Western civilization. But, "Oh, Hey, you can also pay all the bills." You know, like this is a guy who wants all the benefits of Western society, but doesn't want any responsibility that comes with that and doesn't feel like assimilating to Western society. And that's kind of a dangerous situation. From the sound of it, he doesn't see anything wrong with chastising his wife about everything and probably already feels emasculated by his wife if I had to guess. I bet you all his friends are like, "Why do you let your wife work?" And he's probably not like, "Oh, she makes a ton of money for me, way more than I do." That's not something you brag about to your friends, mostly when you live in a culture like this.
[00:20:34] Normally I'd say that they both need to go see a counselor, but I'm almost chuckling to myself. Something tells me that he simply thinks this is also only her problem.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:20:44] Yup.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:20:44] And that going to a counselor is something that she needs to do if she feels unhappy. But you know, at the end of the day, she's basically chattel to him. I mean, it sounds like he's a very conservative guy from a very conservative place. And in a weird way, and I put this in underlined, bold air quotes here, don't get me wrong, I mean, he's sort of right as far as he's concerned, right? Don't get me wrong. He's not right at all about women's work. He's not right about being a jerk to his wife. I mean, he's got his head planted firmly, firmly in the 1950s I'll spare you. But this is actually her problem to solve. That's what he's right about. It is her problem to solve. In other words, she's the only one with the power to make a change here because he probably doesn't really want to. He's living pretty right now. If I were her, instead of trying to change the situation, try and change his beliefs, she should be asking herself if she wants to stay in a marriage with somebody who's living a few centuries behind the rest of the world here, or at least the rest of Canada.
[00:21:41] As of right now, she's doing everything on her own, so she's probably better off on her own. I'm curious what she thinks about that. Maybe she's a little insecure about being alone, and it's probably a scary thought. But this to me just sounds like a controlling and potentially abusive marriage. I don't want to say he's abusing her. I think there's a lot of people, especially a lot of women who would say, "Whoa, wait, somebody who tells you to do all this and controls your financial decisions. That's financial abuse." And I won't disagree here. I will not. Maybe he doesn't hit her but demanding she converts to his religion, demanding she does all the work and makes all the money, and then doing nothing to keep his end of things up. It sounds a little bit like slavery to me. I don't know. I'm trying to find a distinction here but --
Jason DeFillippo: [00:22:21] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:22:22] -- can't really find it.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:22:23] I'm also worried that about her physical safety if she does decide to leave --
Jordan Harbinger: [00:22:26] Me too.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:22:27] -- because that's, you know, yeah, right now everything's going this guy's way. So when things stop going his way, how's he going to react if he's coming from the mindset that he's in right now. That mindset isn't really known for being loving and caring and saying, "I hope you do well in your new life."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:22:44] Yes.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:22:44] Nope. That's not how it works. It's like, "Bitch, get back in the kitchen."
Jordan Harbinger: [00:22:48] Let's co-parent. I see that you have a different opinion of mine. I'm going to respect that, except I never did that during our marriage, unlikely.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:22:55] Yes, and no one liked this ever. So that's why I'd be worried about her physical safety. That's what really kind of bugs me a lot about this.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:23:01] I do worry about that as well. I mean, she needs to ask if she's better off in that situation. And here's the other unfortunate kicker. She needs to ask if her kids are going to grow up well adjusted when they see their mother being treated like crap.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:23:14] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:23:15] Is her daughter going to grow up and be in relationships with people who treat her like crap? How is her son going to adjust to a modern life in Canada where you can't just do whatever you want with women that you're with? These are the questions that she needs to be asking. I feel like kids were raised like this, often they have really dysfunctional relationships when they grow up in modern society. Some of them probably go, "Yeah, my dad's a little conservative. It's ridiculous," but I can't imagine you come out with a blueprint of a healthy marriage. I just can't.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:23:42] Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:23:42] Not without a ton of work.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:23:43] It's just going to raise messed up kids. It's better for the kids. If she gets out now and just gets away from this guy. This guy is toxic. He's trouble.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:23:51] It sounds very troubling. It sounds like this dude in any other scenario should be on his absolute best behavior unless he wants his wife, kids, and meal ticket to walk out the door. Let him go shopping, let him take care of his newly single ass for like a week while she goes and stays with her parents or something. See if he changes his tune. Again though. I mean, what's he going to do? "Oh, you don't leave me. I'm in control here because I'm the man, because that's why where I was raised," and a lot of times abusive or controlling people, whether it's cultural or not, don't like to be told no. They react poorly to that, in which case she's in an even worse situation than we thought. So this one freaks me out, man. I'm going to lie.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:24:31] Yeah, me either. When I was reading the question, I was just like, "Oh man, I feel so bad for her but, you know, like you said, there were signs at the beginning, so I don't know. I don't know. And who knows? I mean, this is her co-worker that's writing to us, so maybe she doesn't want to leave. You don't really know what the inside of a marriage looks like unless you're on the inside of a marriage. If it was me and it was my friend, I'd be like, "Get the hell out. Let's get you to a shelter. Let's get the kids safe, and then let's figure out how to get a restraining order and get this guy out of your life forever." That's what I would do if it was my friend.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:06] All right, Jason, what's next?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:25:08] Hi, Jordan and all. I have the opportunity to do a hard reset in a couple of months. I accepted a new job in a big city, in a state that I've never lived in, away from my family with only one or two acquaintances. The job is something I currently do, so I will be learning new skills as well, and we'll be paid much better. Socially, I consider myself introverted and like to have a few close friends and I'm interested in finding a new relationship. Can you give me some general guidelines and what to keep in mind as I go through this big transition? How do I decide which habits to start and stop? What do I need to remember and avoid? What are the opportunities here that I may not be thinking of? Thank you for your help and advice. Best, Hoping to Be Better at Moving Forward.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:25:54] This is pretty general, but I would say one, make sure you know you're entering other people's worlds. Their lives are continuing as normal. You're the new person in the city, in the group, or in the office. So don't expect other people to go out of their way to accommodate or include you. It doesn't mean they're not going to be welcoming necessarily, but I've seen this. I've done this myself where I'll move to a new country and I'm like, "Yeah," everyone's going to be like, "Oh, there's this guy here. We need to hang out." And then you move there and it's like, "Uh, Hey new guy, are you going to like try to do anything and make friends with us?" And I'd be like, "I'm being left out." And it's like, "Well, dude, you sit in your office all day. What are you doing?"
[00:26:29] The onus is on you to make a circle and get yourself known and make some friends. Two, start the move with a bang and sign up for some physical activity. Now, that might be trickier now in the era of lockdown. The gym is fine. Better if you play some sort of team sport or partner sports, something that gets you involved with folks. Again, you might have to wait to lockdown ends, moving during a lockdown, yikes, sorry about that. Three, any habit you want to quit now is the time you're entering a whole new environment, so the triggers for bad habits will not be there necessarily. You can also design your new environment around not doing that habit. For example, if you tend to watch too much TV too late at night. Don't set up your TV when you move, put your yoga mat there instead and replace Netflix with stretching or something like that. And four, there's always opportunities when you move, but I'd say for the first few months, you have the excuse that you're new to the area and you can use that to ask people to meet for a drink, have a dinner party, go to an event, or have an event, et cetera. Take the initiative and make it known that you are new to town and you don't have as many connections in the area and that you're open to tagging along with other folks to everything from sports events to the gun range or whatever you want to do. Now, best of luck with the move and go get some strange.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:27:55] We'll be right back with more Feedback Friday right after this.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:27:58] This episode is sponsored in part by ZENB. Now, ZENB Veggie Bites and Veggie Sticks are these plant-based, organic, good source of fiber, gluten-free, non-GMO. There's a lot of non's in there. They contain no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. These come in these little packs like some are like granola bar packs. Others are these little sachets, I guess, for lack of a better word. And you can snack before a workout, graze on something light. I tend to get to these in the evening because otherwise, it's like, Ooh, chocolate covered macadamia nuts. With these, I'm like, okay. So they use whole beets and stuff like that. It's really kind of tasty, surprisingly so. You got to try these little veggie fruit nut spice blends and they're not too sweet. If you're someone who thinks that every snack is too sweet like me, you'll probably dig these. Visit ZENB, Z-E-N-B.com/jordan. You get 30 percent off any product and you get a free trial of the -- I don't know how snacks have trials, but that's what they're doing here. It's zenb.com/jordan.
[00:28:55] This episode is also sponsored in part by Better Help. We're all self- quarantining, isolating, and social distancing. Probably not the best time to find a counselor, but you know, that's what you're telling yourself. You've been putting it off forever. Now is actually the best time to get over your fear and finally stop putting it off because Better Help online counseling is there for you. It's video chat, phone calls, chat, text. It doesn't matter. They got you covered on any device you have. Connect with your new professional counselor. Everything is confidential, everything is secure. There are no pranksters joining in to show off their junk, unlike some of your other video conferencing software. They, of course, provide confidentialities. If you don't like your counselor, you just get a new one anytime, no additional charge. Jason, tell him where they can try a Better Help.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:29:35] I shall. It's a truly affordable option for our listeners because you get 10 percent off your first month with a discount code JORDAN. So get started today and get over that fear. Go to betterhelp.com/jordan. Simply fill out a questionnaire to help them assess your needs and get matched with a counselor you'll love. Do it now. No excuses. Betterhelp.com/jordan.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:29:56] This episode is also sponsored in part by Progressive Insurance. Fun fact, Progressive customers qualify for an average of six discounts when they sign up for Progressive Auto Insurance. Discounts for things like enrolling in automatic payments, ensuring more than one car, going paperless, and of course, being a safe driver. Plus customers who bundle their auto with home or add renter's insurance save an average of 12 percent on their auto. There are so many ways to save when you switch, and once you're a customer with Progressive, you get unmatched claim service with 24/7 support online or by phone. It's no wonder why more than 20-million drivers trust Progressive and why they've recently climbed to the third-largest auto insurer in the country. Get a quote online at progressive.com in as little as five minutes and see how much you could be saving.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:30:39] Auto insurance from Progressive Casualty Insurance Company and affiliates, home and renters insurance, not available in all states, provided and serviced by affiliated and third-party insurers. Discounts vary and are not available in all states and situations.
[00:30:52] 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 jordanharbinger.com/deals. Now back to the show for the conclusion of Feedback Friday.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:31:05] All right. What's next?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:31:08] Hello, Jordan, and the whole Harbingerius family. I'm 35 years old from Italy and my life has been undefined so far. I dropped from university when I was 20 to spend a year in Australia. After that, I spent a few years chasing the same high by working my ass off back home and traveling some more. I lived in Canada for six months, a year in Trinidad and Tobago, various stops in China, Thailand, and multiple other locations. I've been spending the last year in random jobs to pay the bills, but I've been extremely unhappy with my situation. I started taking online courses to at least have some sort of papers to show what I could bring to a company because if you look at my resume, I have so many different jobs on it. It looks ridiculous. I've had experience in sales, marketing, manual labor, such as truck driving, fruit picking, and random jobs in factories. Also, translations, cooking and bartending and serving. And I've been a musician, photographer, videomaker, and the jobs I like the most have always been in contact with a customer in front of me, and I'm good at selling things. Having said that, I still don't know what to do with my life. I'm never satisfied and I get bored after a while. I see people handling international sales with English way worse than mine. But they have a degree and I don't have anything to show my proficiency, and I've always scoffed at the idea of spending money to get a certificate to prove I can speak the language. I recently realized I could be defined as a jack-of-all-trades and you know the rest. With this brief glimpse into my life, would you have any recommendations into what to do or study to advance and start my career path? Cheers, Another Jacamo of All Trades.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:32:42] Hey man, great English actually. I don't think you have to worry about that too much. The problem isn't that you're just jumping around a lot. It's that anyone can see that you get bored and restless, which is not something I look for in a hire. I'll go ahead and throw that out there. I don't really want somebody who's going to ghost me because they get sick of the tasks that I'm giving them. I think sales, especially outside sales, where you go to the customer is probably a good position for you. It keeps you out of the office, the cubicle. It keeps you on the road, which is obviously where you're more comfortable. And getting sales jobs, usually those are really easy to get because it's hard to train for sales and most people wash out because they're not cut out for it.
[00:33:24] What kind of English certificate do you actually need? I can't imagine it would be that hard to find a place to get a certificate on the cheap. And if you need a standardized test, I agree. They're kind of ridiculous, but just take the damn thing online or something and get it over with. It'll be a piece of cake for you and pay for itself in spades with your new job. And whenever people say they're good at selling things, I always have to suggest sales. The pay is good. You can work from anywhere. There are always opportunities. You can work from anywhere and you can work anywhere. I mean, any country, any place needs sales, there are always opportunities. And as much as it seems commonplace, it's actually a rare skill to be able to sell things. So use it, hone it, make it your specialty. And I think you'll be able to travel and work as much as you want. And if you get bored, you can go to any company anywhere and sell anything. There's just a lifetime of variety right there.
[00:34:16] And if you're listening to this and you can relate, but you're not as good at sales, get a sales job and build that skill. Salespeople who can sell well, they never get let go. They always have a way to make a living in any economy. It can be learned. I learned it because I had to. We had a sales guy quit at my old company and he gave us no warning. And we basically said, "Look, if you're going to leave us in the lurch like this, you have to teach Jordan how to sell." And he gave me some tips and then listened to a few of my calls and he's like, "Oh, you're kind of good at this. Just keep practicing." And I kept sending him my calls. He was a buddy of mine, even though he screwed us over. And I ended up being able to sell and I sold for the company for years. And it was awesome. It was a really good skill set. And now, I'm very confident with sales, which is ironic because I barely have to do it at all anymore. But I'll tell you, it's a really good thing to know that you can do, because it becomes enjoyable. And if you're already good at sales, you're just absolutely employable in any economy, in any country, anywhere.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:35:18] My dad was a salesperson growing up. He sold alarm systems for Westinghouse way back in the day. And so when I got into sales, I was selling cameras at Ritz camera -- if anybody remembers that one back in the malls -- and I was terrible. I was a terrible salesperson. And then I had him come in and watch me a couple of times and he gave me some tips. In three months, I went from the lowest on the totem pole to making the biggest bonus for selling the most cameras in a month. It can totally be learned, and I am a hardcore introvert. I do not like that. But you know, if you have the skill set. You can do it. You can honestly do it. And it sounds like you're already halfway there. So get on it, man. It's a great skill to have.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:36:01] So there you have it. Next step.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:36:03] Hello, Jordan and Jason. In the middle of this pandemic, I did manage to actually get a job a few months after getting my bachelor's degree this past December. However, it's the same factory job. I would work during summer breaks when I wasn't at school. I know the past few Feedback Fridays have covered trying to work whatever you can in this crazy time, and I do feel grateful to have this job. However, I can't stand this job and I want to work in sports, either in sales or marketing. I know this may seem like an overreaction, but I feel like I could be stuck at this job like many of my co-workers, and I really don't want that to happen. After all, I just spent half a day pressing a button and waiting. I was emailing an employer about a job last month, but that was a week before all the sports leagues shutdown. I know this pandemic will pass. But what should I do to get the job I want afterwards? Regard, Stuck in an Unhappy Place.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:36:53] Well, I get it. Boring. Lack of meaning. Feels like you're not developing any skills. I'm wondering if you can listen to stuff at work. I know a lot of people who write in and say like, "Hey, I got a machine job, or I'm on an assembly line. I listened to The Jordan Harbinger Show naturally," but maybe you can also get some Pimsleur. Is it Pimsleur?
Jason DeFillippo: [00:37:10] Pimsleur.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:11] Pimsleur language courses. You can tell I took the French ones or something like that.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:37:18] La-pims-leur.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:18] La-pims-leur. You can learn some Spanish. You can learn some French, although Spanish is going to be a lot more useful. Pimsleur method, it's a lot of the repeat after me where it says like one word and then they build sentences based on those words. So you can learn how to say like, "Che cosa volete compralo qui" which is the only thing I can say in Italian, and you do that over and over and over. There's even Chinese. It has it for every language. Also, if you're not deriving meaning or challenge from your day job, you can always derive meaning from what you do outside of your day job. And I've given this advice before, I think there was a federal agent who worked at the FBI and he's like, "Man, I'm just not feeling it, but I have like eight more years until retirement."
Jason DeFillippo: [00:37:55] I remember that guy. Yeah.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:37:56] Remember that guy. Get fit, workout a bunch, learn some skills online after work. Or once this mess is over, go to night school at a community college, get a master's degree or something. There are loads of things you can do to be moving ahead. Also, what about a sales job at the factory? Marketing? Maybe there's a way for you to work in the field that you want to work in, even if you're not in the industry that you want to be in. So then you'll go into the industry with some marketing experience because -- look, if they don't pay you for that, maybe you can even be an intern after your normal factory job in the marketing department or something like that at that same factory. The opportunities there do exist if you make them or you ask for them to be made. I'd say wait it out without this COVID mess, but start networking with hiring managers right now so that you've got contacts for when the smoke clears. And in the meantime, you'll be even more marketable once things are over if you've got a new skill and some work experience under your belt.
[00:38:58] Life Pro Tip of the Week. If you have to use elevators, you can use a cigarette lighter to push the button. Obviously, you don't touch the wheel part that you then touch with your finger. You use that metal front part and then you can disinfect it with fire. You can use it for any switch elevator buttons, public switch. Then you flick the wheel and you light the lighter to disinfect the metal end with fire. So no wasting tissues. You don't have to put a glove on just to use the elevator or whatever. So kind of a cool little trick. I saw that on Reddit.
[00:39:28] Recommendation of the Week. One Child Nation. Now, this is on Amazon Prime Video. This is depressing in a way, but I found it really interesting. It's the results of China's one child policy. So you see all of these families with mostly way too many guys because they value sons over women. And so there's this massive difference in men and women as far as marriage is concerned. But also like what happened to all those babies, and I won't spoil the answers for you. Some of them are pretty horrible, and other people had adoption businesses. Their kids were being sold, kidnapped, discarded. It's really crazy. Again, not a light watch, but interesting at least for me. I thought this was fascinating. One Child Nation, Amazon Prime Video. You can find it. We'll link to it in the show notes as well.
[00:40:13] Hope you all enjoyed that. I want to thank everyone that wrote in this week. A link to the show notes for the episode can be found at jordanharbinger.com. Quick shout out to Josh who says, "Thanks for mentioning skilled tradespeople. I spent 18 years in HVAC. I've been around construction my whole life. We always have jobs. There is a shortage of people and everyone is working full-time throughout COVID, So thanks, keep crushing it." Thank you, Josh, for listening to the show. And I'm telling you, if you can't find jobs, those trade jobs, they pay well. There's always work and there's a shortage of people, so you can write your own ticket a lot of time.
[00:40:44] Go back and check out the guests from this week if you haven't yet, and if you're wondering how I managed to book all these amazing guests, it's because I got an amazing network and I'm teaching you how to create that network. I've got a course about that. The course is free. It's at jordanharbinger.com/course. Dig the well before you get thirsty. Even if it feels like you're starting from scratch, now is the time to start this. And a lot of people have learned the hard way now that they've been laid off or furloughed with COVID here, that they need a network to reach out to. A lot of people who thought, "I don't need this. I work at such and such." Now, they're like, "What do I do?" And I'm like, "Oh, you start six months ago when I told you about this and you said he didn't need it." The second best time to start this, as right now, jordanharbinger.com/course. I'm on Instagram and Twitter at @JordanHarbinger. I've always answered my inbox. They're always answering my tweets. Videos of our interviews are at jordanharbinger.com/youtube. Do check out the new website. Let me know what you think. Find any bugs, I'll give you a book. Jason.
Jason DeFillippo: [00:41:38] Well, I don't have books to give out, but I've got a new website coming up at jpd.me where you can see all the stuff that I'm doing, and you can also check out my tech podcast, Grumpy Old Geeks.
Jordan Harbinger: [00:41:47] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. This episode produced by Jen Harbinger and Jase Sanderson, show notes by Robert Fogarty, music by Evan Viola, transcripts by Millie Ocampo. Keeps sending in those questions to email@example.com.
[00:42:01] Our advice and opinions, and those of our guests are their own, and I'm a lawyer, but I am not your lawyer. So do your own research, and I don't mean just googling something, you know, like there's a lot of crap there too. Do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show. Remember, we rise by lifting others. Share the show with those you love, and even those you don't. Lots more in the pipeline. I'm very excited for the future here with the show. And 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.
Narrator: [00:42:28] PodcastOne presents This is a Collect Call From Sing Sing.
John J. Lennon: [00:42:35] My name is John J. Lennon. I'm locked up for selling drugs and committing murder. I'm also a contributor for Esquire Magazine and The Marshall Project, so I'm a writer and I'm a prisoner. Imagine trying to stay focused and talked about issues of substance with gates slamming, prisoners screaming, and PAs blaring in the background.
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