A number of red flags have you rethinking the effectiveness of your shrink. Shouldn’t they make you feel more capable of facing the world and understanding your place in it instead of less capable and more confused? Is it time for you to shop for a newer, better therapist? We’ll try to help you answer this and more here on Feedback Friday!
And in case you didn’t already know it, Jordan Harbinger (@JordanHarbinger) and Gabriel Mizrahi (@GabeMizrahi) 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:
- A number of red flags have you rethinking the effectiveness of your shrink. Is it time for you to shop for a newer, better therapist? [Thanks once again to clinical psychologist Dr. Erin Margolis for helping us with this one!]
- You’re concerned about the well-being of an on-again, off-again ex. How can you check in on them without re-entering what always turns out to be a hurtful and toxic relationship?
- How might you pitch the higher-ups at your office about covering the costs of the doctorate you’re pursuing that would increase your market value within the company — sure to be a win/win for both parties?
- When the city government and law enforcement won’t do anything to stem the meth production and associated traffic blighting the neighborhood, can the landlords who allow this to continue be held legally accountable? [As always, thanks to attorney Corbin Payne for helping us answer this one!]
- Everyone you know reached out and offered support when you made your cancer diagnosis public — except for your best friend, who notably kept their distance. Should you even still consider this person your friend?
- 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 Gabriel on Twitter at @GabeMizrahi.
Like this show? Please leave us a review here — even one sentence helps! Consider leaving your Twitter handle so we can thank you personally!
Please Scroll Down for Featured Resources and Transcript!
Please note that some of the links on this page (books, movies, music, etc.) lead to affiliate programs for which The Jordan Harbinger Show receives compensation. It’s just one of the ways we keep the lights on around here. Thank you for your support!
This Episode Is Sponsored By:
- Peloton: Learn more at onepeloton.com/row
- BetterHelp: Get 10% off your first month at betterhelp.com/jordan
- Athletic Greens: Visit athleticgreens.com/jordan for a free one-year supply of vitamin D and five free travel packs with your first purchase
- Mea Culpa: Listen here or wherever you find fine podcasts!
Miss our conversation with Karim Hijazi, one of the most skilled cybersecurity professionals in the game who shares his concerns about national security and our vulnerability to cyber warfare? Listen to episode 647: Karim Hijazi | When Cyber War Goes Kinetic here!
Resources from This Episode:
- Chocolate | Skeptical Sunday | Jordan Harbinger
- Florence Williams | The Science of Heartbreak | Jordan Harbinger
- Mark Manson | Giving a F*ck About What Really Matters | Jordan Harbinger
- Dexter | Prime Video
- Eight Signs of a Bad Therapist: When You Should Move On | Verywell Mind
- Is She Moving Abroad for a Friend or a Fraud? | Feedback Friday | Jordan Harbinger
- Dr. Erin Margolis | Website
- How to Be Friends with Your Ex: Tips & Everything to Consider | Mindbodygreen
- His Love Is Bona Fide, Not a Mail-Order Bride | Feedback Friday | Jordan Harbinger
- How to Get Your Employer to Help You Pay for College | Experian
- What are the Consequences for Drug Activity in a Rental Property? | LegalMatch
- Corbin Payne | Twitter
- The Best (and Worst) Ways to Support a Friend with Cancer | Northwestern Medicine
792: Red Flags Making You Rethink Your Shrink | Feedback Friday
[00:00:00] Jordan Harbinger: Special thanks to Peloton for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[00:00:08] Welcome to Feedback Friday. I'm your host, Jordan Harbinger. As always, I'm here with Feedback Friday producer, the human space heater, warming up this little nook of life advice, Gabriel Mizrahi. On The Jordan Harbinger Show, we decode the stories, secrets, and skills of the world's most fascinating people and turn their wisdom into practical advice that you can use to impact your own life and those around you. We want to help you see the Matrix when it comes to how these amazing people think and behave. And our mission is to help you become a better informed, more critical thinker. So you can get a much deeper understanding of how the world works and make sense of what's really happening even inside your own mind.
[00:00:42] Now, if you're new to the show, on Fridays, we give advice to you. We answer listener questions. The rest of the week, we have long-form interviews and conversations with a variety of really incredible people, from spies to CEOs, athletes, authors, thinkers, and performers. This week we had Florence Williams on the science of heartbreak. This is kind of an interesting subject. I didn't realize there was science behind heartbreak. It turns out heartbreak messes with your immune system, your hormones, not just your emotions. We all said, my friend, my old friend, really old friend, Mark Manson, author of Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck among other books, really fun conversation, really loose conversation. I've known Mark for at least, I want to say 15 years. So this is well before he wrote anything. I think I was around even when he started the blog. So it's really interesting to see his evolution from normal schmucky schmuck like me to, well, frankly, one of the most famous authors on the planet, which is great. So make sure you've had a look and a listen to everything that we created for you here this week.
[00:01:39] Some fun news before we jump in, we've just launched a new AI chatbot for the show. We mentioned this a couple of weeks ago as well. Still ironing out the kinks. Really, really fun, amazing tool. You can basically ask at any question, any query. It'll comb all of our episode transcripts, pretty much everything we've ever recorded on a topic in like five seconds. So you can ask anything that we may have covered on Feedback Friday. You can ask anything that's been covered in an interview. How do I know if something is a scam or a cult? How do I draw a boundary with my mom? What's the promo code for Better Help? The AI chatbot will return every result in a really neat, fun interface. We're open to feedback on this as well because we're always trying to improve what is probably going to be another product for podcasters. So definitely go check it out. jordanharbinger.com/ai to get started.
[00:02:26] Gabriel, we're actually thinking about changing the top of the website to just have that as the search. I know you and I were talking about that, so this quickly becomes so useful. It's almost more useful than anything else we could have put on the website. You don't even really need the nav as much anymore. You can just kind of ask the chatbot and you get what you want or what you think. Again, jordanharbinger.com/ai to go play around with it. And email me if you find a weird bug or if it tells you that my mother's a racist, which was the first bug that I found.
[00:02:54] All right, Gabe, what's the first thing out of the mailbag?
[00:02:57] Gabriel Mizrahi: She definitely isn't for the record. Bev is an angel.
[00:03:00] Jordan Harbinger: Right. Definitely not a racist as far as I know.
[00:03:02] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:03:02] Jordan Harbinger: No, she's wonderful. All right, let's get into it.
[00:03:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hi, Jordan and Gabe. Sometime back, I was quite new to therapy and I ended up seeing a therapist who was extremely problematic. In general, she would diagnose me out of the blue with various disorders — ADHD, secretly depressed, told me I had to break up with my partner when I had barely mentioned him in therapy, and fixated on how much I wasn't enjoying grad school, even when I insisted on not talking about it. Tensions finally came to a head when my therapist insisted that I should, quote, "Love my PhD journey as much as she loved hers," unquote. And when I replied that our PhDs were completely different, including the fact that the first year and a half of mine was on Zoom, she told me that that was an extremely privileged thing to say and that, quote, "People in Africa would love to do an online degree," unquote. For context, she is not from Africa and got her in-person PhD in California. The worst part is that I started to convince myself that there was something very wrong with me since this professional therapist essentially told me I needed meds to get on top of my depression. I didn't even know I had. I always felt worse after therapy instead of better and was usually sobbing after every session. This went on for nine months. Then, right after the whole privileged incident, I happened to grab dinner with my lifelong friend and her partner. I shared my situation and mentioned my therapist's name, and both of their jaws dropped. They actually knew this therapist. She's an uncle's ex-girlfriend of 10 years and stressed that I needed to stop seeing her ASAP as she is extremely narcissistic and loves to make fun of her client's mental health issues to anyone who will listen. For example, she openly discussed and laughed about a client's miscarriage at a wedding, not to mention a whole laundry list of highly problematic techniques. Since then, I've met several other people at grad school who have also seen this therapist and have had very similar experiences. You guys always stress how important therapy is, and generally, I agree with that. Since all of this happened, I found a new therapist who is great and is helping a lot with the trauma I got from the past therapy, but can you talk about what good and bad therapist behaviors are and how to identify some early warning signs of a toxic therapist? Signed, Figuring Out How to Vouch For the Person Putting You On the Couch.
[00:05:26] Jordan Harbinger: Well, holy crap, Gabriel, this is a wild story.
[00:05:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oof. Yeah.
[00:05:31] Jordan Harbinger: Wow. I got to say, I might be naive or something, but it's kind of blowing my mind that there are therapists like this out there. I mean—
[00:05:37] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:05:38] Jordan Harbinger: —I get that there are better ones and worse ones, more sophisticated ones, less sophisticated ones. But the idea that there could be a therapist out there who's actually hurting people and maybe even doing it on purpose—
[00:05:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mmm.
[00:05:49] Jordan Harbinger: —not just this woman but multiple people. She has a reputation. It's just insane to me.
[00:05:54] Gabriel Mizrahi: Tell me about it. Because you would think that's somebody who has to go through school to do this job, like a lot of school—
[00:05:59] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:05:59] Gabriel Mizrahi: —to do this job and training and get your hours and talk to mentors. I mean, who's presumably studied things like narcissism—
[00:06:06] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:06:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: —and manipulation and ethics. That they would somehow go through all that training and be like, "Oh wow. I have some stuff I need to look at. Like there's something wrong with me."
[00:06:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. You think the system would catch people like this somehow because this woman isn't just some hapless shrink who accidentally confused a few patients.
[00:06:21] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:06:22] Jordan Harbinger: You have to try to be this bad. Like I said, a part of me even wonders if she's just a psychopath who enjoys toying with people who trust her to care for them. It's very disturbing.
[00:06:32] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. She's like the Dexter of shrinks.
[00:06:34] Jordan Harbinger: Seriously, except she doesn't have a code like Dexter. She's just messing—
[00:06:38] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:06:38] Jordan Harbinger: —with people's lives left and right.
[00:06:40] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah. There's no moral compass here.
[00:06:42] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. I'm really sorry this happened to you these nine months. Nine months, they sound incredibly upsetting, hurtful, unproductive. It's just unforgivable, really. But here's the great news. You got the perspective you needed. You got the hell out of there. You found this new therapist who's great. I think that's all really good news. That's awesome. And good on you for not giving up on therapy entirely after that. Because if I were in your shoes, I might have been so turned off by the whole experience, I might have never come back. And I've actually gotten, I want to say more than a handful of letters like that from people who've tried one or two therapists who just sucked and then they give up on it. And even though, in my opinion, they could really use a good therapist. And so I just think that's kind of tragic. It's kind of like going to the gym and you have a bad trainer—
[00:07:26] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:07:27] Jordan Harbinger: And you pull something and you go, "Oh, I'm just not going to work out anymore. That's kind of the same thing.
[00:07:31] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:07:31] Jordan Harbinger: Except for your mental health, which is even arguably more important.
[00:07:34] Gabriel Mizrahi: More important.
[00:07:35] Jordan Harbinger: This is a very salient question. As always, we reached out to consult with an actual expert here. So we reached out to Dr. Erin Margolis, clinical psychologist, friend of the show, and certified non-toxic, non-narcissistic, loving, and supportive champion of the mental health.
[00:07:51] Soundbite: I'm also known to the people who know me the best as the f*cking doctor. [Analyze This - Ben Sobel]
[00:07:57] Jordan Harbinger: And Dr. Margolis had the same reaction we did, that this experience you had in therapy is devastating both to you and to the mental health field in general. As she pointed out, there's an inherent power preferential between therapist and patient. Although a good therapist would never lord that over a patient, they'd keep a careful eye on that. But you know, most of us feel like the therapist is the expert. They've trained for this, and if the expert is telling us something, you're supposed to trust them. I mean, that's the point. Unfortunately, some therapists do exploit that dynamic. So in terms of red flags, Dr. Margolis said that there are a few obvious egregious, non-negotiable signals to pay attention to.
[00:08:35] And those are the ones you can probably imagine, like overly physical contact. Your therapist is touching you, they're being explicitly inappropriate. They make a pass at you. That's a "get up and walk out" moment, no questions asked. Another one, if they make derogatory comments about you or a particular group of people like the shrink is straight up racist or prejudiced or homophobic or cruel, just forget that noise. Just bounce. Or if a therapist asks you to do something that makes you wildly uncomfortable, I don't just mean, "Let's work on your OCD, having you take out the trash without washing your hands three times this week." I'm talking about, "Let's get over your fear of intimacy by doing a sexy dance right in front of me here in my office," or whatever. You know, that's also a red flag.
[00:09:19] Soundbite: It's going to be a no for me, dawg. [Randy Jackson]
[00:09:22] Jordan Harbinger: I'm done with the soundboard for a while, just in case you're wondering. So those are the big ones, the big obvious ones. And then there are warning signs that might not be as severe, but they're just as important. Namely, do you feel safe with this person? Do you feel like they really listen? Do they seem to genuinely care about you? Do you feel that they aren't judging you or holding something against you? Are they working in a way that helps you be your best self? If you feel that the answer to those questions overall is no, then those are also important warning signs to pay attention to. The therapist may not be a monster per se, but they probably aren't the person you want treating you.
[00:10:02] As Dr. Margolis put it, if something a therapist does or says makes you go, "Hmm, is this what therapists actually do? Is this normal?" That's worth reflecting on at a minimum. And then there are smaller signs that aren't as overtly damaging, but they're definitely kind of suss. Stuff like shady payment handling, wonky billing with your insurance, being super forgetful, flaking on appointments, not sending you things when they say they will, little stuff like that.
[00:10:29] Now, where this gets more complicated and a lot more interesting is that in therapy there will be moments that make you uncomfortable. There will be moments that bring up difficult feelings, but that doesn't necessarily mean that they are red flags because look, obviously, we all go to therapy to confront difficult stuff to be challenged, right? That's kind of the point. So if a therapist is digging into some difficult material with you, or if they're pushing you to grow, or if they're encouraging you to look at a situation in a whole new way, that might make you uncomfortable. It might make you a little angry or afraid or confused sometimes, but it doesn't mean that they're malicious. And as we've talked about before, sometimes in therapy things have to get worse before they get better. It's not as simple as, "Hey, anytime you feel a negative emotion, just bounce right out of there."
[00:11:16] As Dr. Margolis explained it to us, the distinction here is if you feel bad after an encounter with a therapist because you worked on something that's difficult, that brings up painful feelings, that's probably appropriate. But if you regularly feel bad after your session because your therapist is shaming you, or they're minimizing your feelings, or they're invalidating your experience, or you're questioning yourself constantly or your therapist is making you feel like you're just being sensitive or you're overreacting. That's the kind of, this person made me feel bad that turns out to be a red flag. You shouldn't be on the floor of your bathroom crying after each session because something came out of the blue.
[00:11:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right. Such a good distinction. But Dr. Margolis said that even these experiences don't automatically mean that you should drop a therapist immediately. Because look, first of all, there can definitely be misunderstandings in therapy. Therapists, they're still human. They sometimes make mistakes or they try something that doesn't quite work, and that doesn't mean they're evil or they're ineffective, or that the relationship is doomed or anything like that.
[00:12:17] So for example, if your therapist, I don't know, like calls your partner by the wrong name one time, or they forget an important detail you shared in a past session, something like that, that can be very upsetting to a patient, and that's fair to some degree, but it might just mean that your therapist is a little frazzled or a little distracted that day. Or here's another one. Let's say your therapist phrases something in a way that doesn't land very well, or they react to something you say in a way that you find kind of dismissive or judgey or something like that, that might not feel very good, but it doesn't mean that you should get up and walk out.
[00:12:51] So Dr. Margolis' general recommendation here is if you encounter one of these signals that just don't sit quite right with you, talk to your therapist about it, bring it up, make it part of the session, you know, you could tell them, "Hey, you know when I told you I wanted to throw my hat in the ring for that promotion at work, and you asked me if it was really a good idea, that kind of bothered me. I felt like you were saying I was making a mistake about getting excited, for example. Or, you know, when you made me pay for that session, I had to cancel last week. I don't know. I felt kind of heard. I felt like you were just treating me like another customer." Whatever's going on, you can bring that feeling or you could bring that point of conflict into the session and you and your therapist can dig into it together. You can figure out what was going on. You could get clear on whether your therapist made a mistake or whether you interpreted something a certain way or both, and you could use that moment to appreciate your experience more and hopefully, become even closer.
[00:13:44] So to quote Dr. Margolis here, "The barometer of whether your therapist is legit is how they respond to those conversations."
[00:13:51] Jordan Harbinger: Right. So if you bring something like this to them and they don't really hear you, or they lash out at you, or they turn around and blame you, then you might have an issue. In fact, having a coach or a therapist turn something around on you is almost always a red flag if they're really doing this habitually.
[00:14:07] Gabriel Mizrahi: I agree with that, although there's even a little distinction in that because a therapist could want to look at how you heard something—
[00:14:13] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:14:14] Gabriel Mizrahi: —to understand why it landed that way. And that also is not turning it around on you. Turning it around on you means, "Well, I don't really know what you're talking about. I think we should talk about why you are so sensitive." That's a different thing.
[00:14:23] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:14:23] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right?
[00:14:23] Jordan Harbinger: Right.
[00:14:24] Gabriel Mizrahi: But look, if your therapist goes, "Thank you for sharing that with me. I'm sorry that I made you feel like you couldn't get excited about that promotion. That wasn't my intention. Tell me what that was like for you."
[00:14:33] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's a good sign.
[00:14:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: Or if they're like, "I hear you. That making you pay for that session made you feel like, I maybe don't care, and I'm glad you told me that. I do make it clear in my policies about cancellations, but I can understand how that might have been a little off-putting to you. So let's talk about it." Then, that moment probably isn't a red flag.
[00:14:50] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, because your therapist is willing to talk about it in an open way.
[00:14:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right. They're inviting it in. They want to understand. And look, I know that that can sometimes feel a little intimidating because of that power differential Jordan just talked about, but Dr. Margolis said that if you can summon the courage to tell your therapist when something bothers you, and also the faith that they'll know what to do with that, that is super important and it can be so powerful in therapy.
[00:15:13] Jordan Harbinger: I think it's also worth acknowledging that warning signs can be somewhat subjective. Something that's a, quote-unquote, "red flag" to one person, it just might not be a red flag to someone else.
[00:15:21] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right.
[00:15:22] Jordan Harbinger: If a therapist puts their hand on a client's thigh and says, "I think we should see each other three times a week, but over at my place." I mean, okay, that's cut and dried.
[00:15:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Sure.
[00:15:30] Jordan Harbinger: But if a therapist says something pointed to a client in order to challenge them and the client gets upset, the client might consider that a red flag, but it really doesn't mean that the therapist did something wrong.
[00:15:42] Gabriel Mizrahi: It's a really good point. It might mean that the client just isn't able to hear that just yet, or to process that, or they're putting it through a certain filter or they can't talk about it with a therapist yet.
[00:15:50] Jordan Harbinger: Exactly. So I just want to call that out because once you're in this more nuanced zone of signals, your personality, your history, your interpretations, those are important variables too. But look, if you ask yourself these questions and you decide that you're working with somebody who's doing real harm, Dr. Margolis said that every client has the right to make a report to the ethics board that manages that professional. For psychologists, that's the Board of Psychology in your state. For social workers, it's the Board of Behavioral Scientists. They're there for a reason and they're an important part of keeping professionals accountable. As Dr. Margolis put it to us, she believes it's really important for clients to feel empowered, to know their rights and to use them when the situation calls for it. And I think the situation probably calls for it. I mean, the wacky diagnoses might be hard to nab her for, but talking about her clients to other people, breaking client confidentiality, especially if you have documentation that sounds like a clear violation of the ethics code. Also you might want to consider writing this therapist a review on Google and Yelp so that other people can see your warning just before going through the same thing themselves. If you're comfortable doing that, just be prepared for her to see that and possibly retaliate in some way. I don't know how she could, it's a risk. This woman sounds like a real loose cannon, so you just have to plan for that. So there you have it — by the way, if she retaliates by posting a response to the Yelp review and being like, "Well, I diagnosed you as bipolar and here's all this crazy crap you told me." Well, there's the ethics violation you were looking for.
[00:17:15] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:17:16] Jordan Harbinger: That just validates your complaint to the ethics board. So you might actually end up throwing yourself on that. And then she just looks crazy and ends up getting disciplined for it. So I wouldn't worry about the retaliation. The retaliation might actually prove what you were alleging if she really does go for it. So it just depends on how thick of a skin you have there.
[00:17:33] Anyway, there you have it. I would also go back and listen to an old Feedback Friday episode. That's episode 624. It was question five on that episode where we talked to Dr. Margolis about how to find a good therapist. Between that episode and this one, you should have a pretty solid rubric to find the right person for you, and we'll link to that in the show notes so you can check it out.
[00:17:51] By the way, that's another good example of something you could use the AI chatbot for. If you typed in, how do I find a good therapist? It should serve you the part of that old Feedback Friday. This question on this episode, once we get the transcript going, and any others where we touch on that topic, pretty sweet. Again, jordanharbinger.com/ai.
[00:18:10] I'm so sorry this happened to you, but I'm glad you got out. I'm glad you stuck with therapy and I want to thank you for writing in because you're doing a great service to everyone else listening right now. And keep up the great work. We're sending you and your friend's uncle who dated this dumpster fire of a woman, our best thoughts.
[00:18:25] Whew. I can imagine dating someone like that and she's going all therapist mode when you're arguing with them and you're like, "No, but you're the crazy one. You are the crazy one, you, psycho."
[00:18:34] Anyway, you know what else will make your friends' jaws drop at dinner, Gabriel? The products and services that support this show. We'll be right back.
[00:18:45] This episode is sponsored in part by Better Help. If you're going through a tough time, join the club, folks. You don't have to deal with it on your own though. Therapy is one of the best things that you can do for yourself, and Better Help is a great option to dip your toes in the water because it's super freaking convenient. Before Better Help existed, finding a therapist, getting an appointment, driving parking was a huge pain in the butt. Better Help's platform is exactly what is needed. You can choose from email, chat, phone, video sessions. For me, I want to sit on my couch or walk around outside and talk on the phone. I don't want to go across town and be in an artificial environment. I want to be comfortable. Also therapy, vulnerable work, by definition. Better Help lets you switch therapists if you need to whenever you want, you just let them know. You don't even need to fire your therapist. They'll do it for you. Check out Better Help's 94,000-plus reviews on the iPhone app if you're still skeptical. Try it out. Thank yourself and maybe even me later.
[00:19:36] Jen Harbinger: If you want to live a more empowered life, therapy can get you there. Visit betterhelp.com/jordan to get 10 percent off your first month. That's better-H-E-L-P.com/jordan.
[00:19:47] Jordan Harbinger: This episode is sponsored in part by Athletic Greens. Jen and I take AG1 by Athletic Greens. Every single morning we add a scoop of AG1 to a bottle of water, shake it up. We started taking it because we often are eating like leftover kid food and this and that and the other thing that my parents brought home from some restaurant that we kind of don't want because we got to clean it out of the fridge. We wanted a quick and easy way to make sure we're getting actual nutrients in a way that our body can absorb. AG1 is like all-in-one nutritional insurance. It's cheaper. It's easier than getting all the different supplements yourself if you're going to do that. Each scoop has 75 vitamins, minerals, whole-food sourced, superfoods, probiotics, adaptogens, all that stuff that you've heard of that you still probably don't know what it is. There's no need for a million different pills and supplements to look out for your healthy for one of those guys. No GMOs, no weird substances that shouldn't normally be in food. No artificial stuff tastes great and I'll say great with a little star because it's still a green juice, but it's just how — how about it's a green juice that's not disgusting? How's that?
[00:20:44] Jen Harbinger: And to make it easy Athletic Greens is going to give you a free one-year supply of immune-supporting vitamin D and five free travel packs with your first purchase. All you have to do is visit athleticgreens.com/jordan. Again, that's athleticgreens.com/jordan to take ownership over your health and pick up the ultimate daily nutritional insurance.
[00:21:02] Jordan Harbinger: Thank you for listening and supporting the show. It's your support that keeps us going. All the deals, all the discount codes, all those tricky little URLs. Those are all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. You can also search for the sponsors using the AI chatbot on the website as well. Please consider supporting those who support this show.
[00:21:20] Now, back to Feedback Friday.
[00:21:24] All right, what's next?
[00:21:25] Gabriel Mizrahi: Dear Jordan and Gabe, two years ago, I met a guy in a college math class. Let's call him Frank. Frank was funny, hard to read, kind of mysterious, smart, attractive, someone I was instantly drawn in by. We became friends and eventually started dating. He was amazing and it was a wonderful relationship. During that time, he changed his degree from engineering to general studies and quit the corps of cadets, a highly prestigious military organization, and his drive went down significantly. Unfortunately, things started going downhill after a few months and we broke up when things started getting complicated with our religious beliefs. I'm a Christian and he isn't. Two weeks later, we got back together because we missed the relationship so much. Fast forward a few months, we both went home for the summer. The relationship cooled off. After a few more months, Frank broke up with me out of the blue, and needless to say, I was very hurt. Fast forward another year, I had moved on as best I could, was going to therapy, and was dating someone else. Then, one day, Frank texted me and said he missed me and wondered if I would be open to being friends with benefits. I broke up with my boyfriend at the time, which had been coming anyway, and Frank and I started seeing each other again. We had fun and something felt right about being together. This lasted for two months until he again said it wasn't going to work. Reigniting the hurt and rejection. We don't have much contact now. We still have feelings for each other, but we know it won't work, as he has serious commitment issues, as well as severe childhood trauma that he refuses to go to therapy for. He's voiced regrets about not trying harder and not living up to his own expectations. And the last time we hung out, he was borderline suicidal.
[00:23:11] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[00:23:12] Gabriel Mizrahi: Recently he dropped out of college and now plays video games whenever he isn't working. He told me that he knew how much of a dipsh*t loser he was, but doesn't think he can change and that taking his own life is inevitable. I've done my best to hear him out, validate his feelings, and make sure he isn't a danger to himself but this is still very alarming. How am I supposed to help him? How am I supposed to make sure that he's safe and make him realize what a gift life is without getting back into this hurtful and toxic relationship? Signed, The Puzzled and Presently Platonic Partner.
[00:23:48] Jordan Harbinger: Yikes, man, this is a sad story.
[00:23:51] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:23:51] Jordan Harbinger: Frank sounds like a very bright, very talented guy who's in a super dark place right now, and it's a dark place that he helped create by dropping out of life and isolating himself. Not unusual for depressed folks to do, of course. And now he's hard to reach, which puts you in a very tough position as his friend/ex.
[00:24:10] So here's the thing about Frank. He has some very real stuff to work on. He has this childhood trauma you mentioned. He's wrestling with some pretty significant depression. He's numbing with video games. He can't sustain a real relationship, and now he's suicidal, which is very sad and scary. But the thing is, there is a real limit to what you can do for Frank, because first of all, he's making it a little difficult to help him, which I can empathize with. But which puts you in the tough position of having to work very hard in order to reach him. Second, the reality is you can't be with him 24 hours a day, seven days a week, even if you did your best, even if he were open to your help. You just can't protect him every second of every day. That's his job.
[00:24:54] Third, the nature of your relationship is complicated. He's not your boyfriend. He wasn't even a steady, inconsistent boyfriend way back when he was actually your boyfriend. He's just your friend now. And yes, you guys have a meaningful past, but even that friendship is a little precarious, ambiguous. It's not clear to me how much responsibility you actually have to save Frank when he isn't fully taking care of himself. And that's a hard thing to say out loud. It kind of makes me feel like a bit of an ass, but I think it's important. All you can do is be a good friend to this guy up to a point, and encourage him to find the help he needs for himself and really engage with it.
[00:25:31] So to answer your question, what that looks like is checking in with him when you can, once a day, every few days, once a week. That's for you to decide and making sure he's okay. Reminding him that he's loved, helping him see that what he's feeling is the despair and trauma talking and not actually him. And sure, talking to him if that feels doable to you. Continuing to validate his feelings, helping him keep some perspective and hope. But while you do that, also remembering, and this is so crucial, remembering that you are not entirely responsible for Frank's mental, emotional state. You can help him stay grounded, stay connected, stay in the game, but you can't upend your whole life to keep him afloat. Again, his job, that's one of the boundaries you're looking for. The best thing you can do really is encourage him to look for a therapist and start talking. This is non-negotiable, in my opinion. It's probably the only way he's going to truly get better.
[00:26:29] Gabriel Mizrahi: I agree, by the way, I hear the shrink from question one has an opening in her schedule. So just putting that out there.
[00:26:34] Jordan Harbinger: She would obviously be my first choice. Just get Frank there and let that dumpster fire of the shrink gaslight and manipulate him until he feels better. But seriously, when he resists therapy, you can say, "Okay, I hear that you don't want to talk to somebody. I accept that it's your call, but if you don't find some help, you are going to keep feeling this way. And I know you have a lot of stuff to get off your chest, and I've been to therapy myself and it was so helpful and I'm not going to stop bringing this up because I believe in it and I care about you." And hopefully, one day he says, "Oh fine, I'll try it." And then maybe you help him Google a few therapists in his area, hold him accountable for setting up an appointment. The other thing I would do is get in touch with his parents and any other close friends and just let them know what's going on with Frank if they don't already know. They should be aware of it. And in my view, they have more of a responsibility to keep tabs on him than you do.
[00:27:27] But while you do all that, keep checking in with yourself and making sure that this kind of involvement in Frank's life, that that's feeling manageable and fair to you. And hey, maybe it does. Maybe you find that healthy balance where you're sending Frank the love he needs to get through this period, but it's not consuming your whole life. Or maybe some days you realize that that's all you're freaking doing is just worrying about him and your grades are slipping and you're not seeing your other friends and you're not open to meeting new guys because you're just wrapped up in Frank and your mood is tanking and you're confused about how you feel. And that's when you need to pull back.
[00:28:02] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:28:02] Jordan Harbinger: And that's perfectly fine. This will be an ongoing boundary that you negotiate with yourself, but that's why you have to be vigilant so you don't lose yourself in propping up, Frank.
[00:28:13] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's exactly right. Just being aware of that tendency, that is probably 90 percent of avoiding the trap, of getting sucked back into this complicated relationship. And Jordan, I just have to say this is probably so much more complicated than even we understand, but they have been through this cycle several times already, right?
[00:28:29] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah.
[00:28:29] Gabriel Mizrahi: They've dated, he's broken up with her, they got back together. They couldn't live without each other. The relationship felt good, but it wasn't good, you know? Then, they run into problems and then he pulls away. And they've done this dance, it sounds like two or three times. That is a pattern, that is a cycle that they're caught in, and there's again, so much more that we could probably know about why that is, but I just have to flag that her wanting to take care of him when he is in the state, I'm sure that there is a part of that that is coming from a very good, very sweet, very caring place in her. And there might also be a piece of that that is her maybe wanting to get him back in some way or to just be important and necessary to him, because it might service this very confusing relationship, right? So that's just another thing that you might want to keep an eye on it and try to separate those two impulses and make sure they're not getting too muddled.
[00:29:18] And honestly, this is a very hard pill to swallow, but I'm not sure that you can make Frank realize what a gift life is. I love that you want to make him realize what a gift life is, but I'm not sure that you can do that. I mean, yes, you can remind him about the good in his life. You can show him that there are goals and experiences that make life worth living, but those will probably just sound like concepts to him right now because when you're depressed, they are just concepts. For that to be real for him, he needs to experience that gift for himself, and that will require him to open up to other people, namely a therapist. It wIll mean re-engaging with his goals, meeting his own standards again. It will mean working through the despair, the self-esteem stuff, the relationship stuff. It will mean taking care of himself better, right? Not disappearing into Call of Duty instead of going for a walk.
[00:30:08] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:30:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: Asking for help instead of self-isolating. Basically, finding out what life feels like when he starts engaging with it again, because in my experience, when you're depressed or you're dealing with somebody who's depressed, that is really the only way to realize that life is a gift, to treat it like one and let it prove you right.
[00:30:26] Jordan Harbinger: Wait, hold up. Say that again. The only way to realize that life is a gift—
[00:30:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Is to treat it like one and let it prove you right.
[00:30:33] Jordan Harbinger: Okay. All right. I like that. It's a nice way to put it.
[00:30:35] Gabriel Mizrahi: I don't know if I can take credit for that idea. I'm sure many other people have said something like that before, but that's been my experience, right? That you only get out what you put in.
[00:30:44] Jordan Harbinger: I know you didn't make that one up, but of course, and depression — that's original. And depression makes you not want to put in, right? That's the whole idea, makes you just not want to put any energy in, you don't have any energy to. so you get less and less out, which makes it harder to break out of the depression. And as somebody who's had down moments.
[00:31:02] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:31:03] Jordan Harbinger: Especially when I was overworked, you know, in doing nothing but work years ago, I totally understand this cycle.
[00:31:09] Gabriel Mizrahi: It is a cycle and it's so hard to break, but the point is that realization has to come from the person. You can't like download it or upload it into his brain.
[00:31:17] Jordan Harbinger: Mm-hmm.
[00:31:18] Gabriel Mizrahi: I wish it worked like that. It would be amazing, but you just can't intellectually convince somebody that life matters. You can only show them by embodying that idea yourself and encouraging them to take just a few small steps to re-engaging so that they can discover that for themselves.
[00:31:31] Jordan Harbinger: Agree. I mean, the only way I got out of it is I went to therapy and she was like, "You're not crazy. You live with a-h*les and here's all these other things you're kind of doing wrong that are contributing to this." And I was like, "Okay, I'll make these changes." And then, a few months later she's like, "I'm firing you as a client and I'm promoting you to my friend because you are totally different person, and your energy is completely different and all your circumstances are totally different." It was just a real night and day change.
[00:31:56] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hmm.
[00:31:56] Jordan Harbinger: And it was because of my therapist. So, look, on a very practical note, if you ever think Frank is in serious imminent danger, like you're on the phone with him and he's got a bottle of pills in his hand or something, then I would call the police and his parents. Again, it's not on you to save him, but if you're ever right there and he's seriously at risk, of course, you got to act. So I hope you can get through to Frank, but more importantly, I hope you find a way to be there for him without losing yourself. It's a tough skill. But it's an essential one, and you're learning it right now, which is great. You're a good friend, you're a solid person, and Frank is lucky to have you in his life. Good luck.
[00:32:34] You can reach us firstname.lastname@example.org. Please keep your emails concise. Use a descriptive subject line that makes our job a lot easier. If there's something you're going through, any big decision that you're wrestling with, or you want a new perspective on stuff, life, love, work. What to do if you're afraid about what people will think of your foreign partner? Whatever's got you staying up at night lately, hit us up email@example.com. We're here to help and we keep every email anonymous.
[00:33:00] Okay, what's next?
[00:33:01] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey, Jordan and Gabe. I've been in my current job for seven years and I'm happy there, but I've recently decided to pursue a doctorate now that I've achieved a reasonable level of mastery in my position to narrow down the concentrations that I'm considering. I reached out to four of the company's senior executives and asked about the extent to which my academic ambitions align with the company's goals. One of the executives responded right away and set a call for us during which I hope to, one, get more insight into the company's direction, and two, determine a specialization that has market value within the company, but also beyond it. It should also help that the executive I'll be meeting has followed a similar educational path. My company has spent tens of thousands of dollars on my professional development, sending me to a wide array of events, seminars, trainings, and workshops over the years. It also paid for my master's program. Generally, I've never been told no, but I've never asked for something so significant. How do I go about convincing the company to chip in for the cost of my program? What are some good questions to ask? When should I ask? How direct should I be? Is there anything I should avoid saying? Should this be broached during the call or in a follow up email? Signed, Learning the Game to Add Three More Letters to My Name.
[00:34:19] Jordan Harbinger: Well, first of all, it sounds like your company is super generous and supportive, and that says a lot about how much they value you, which is really a great sign, in my opinion. But you're right, asking them to foot the bill for a PhD, it's a much bigger request. So you're going to want to be very thoughtful about how you approach this. So here's what I would do. First of all, I would sit down and put together a little business case for your request, figure out how much your program will cost, then figure out how much more valuable you'll be to the company as a result. Ideally, in terms of how much more money you'd be able to bring into the company directly or indirectly, but also in terms of knowledge, reputation, expertise, all of that. Ideally, you'll be able to show that your added value will exceed the cost of the degree and how quickly they can recoup their investment, which by the way, that's also going to help you figure out how many years you should promise to stick around. This is basically a version of the briefcase technique. We've talked about this on the show before. Go to the AI chatbot on the website, type in briefcase technique, and check out the Deep Dive and Feedback Friday episodes that we've done about this. Those are going to be great resources for you.
[00:35:27] After that, you're going to want to prep for these meetings. I love your goals for this chat with the guy who did his PhD, learning about the company's direction, figuring out which specialization would be most valuable. That's exactly the information that you need. Fill them in on where you're heading, and ask them a few really good questions like, how'd you choose your program? Are you happy you did your degree? How are you using it now? What should I be thinking about at this stage? Listen, ask, follow up questions. Just be a sponge. Then I would take what you learn and work it into your pitch, and you might end up doing this in person, or you might do it by email. I'm leaning towards email because there's probably a number of people who are going to need to sign off on this and it just helps to have it in writing so you don't have to make your pitch 15 different times.
[00:36:12] But either way, I would start by telling everybody how much you love your job and how grateful you are for all their supports. Kicking off a conversation like this by saying, "Hey, I'm super excited about my future here. I'm so appreciative of all your support from my education, which has gotten me to this exciting point." That's a great way to set the tone. A lot of people skip that step in the rush to state their case, so don't make that mistake. Then, I would tell them where you're heading. You can say, "So I've listened to your advice. I've given this a lot of thoughts, and I've decided to pursue a doctorate with a concentration in X. And I'm super passionate about this field. I believe a doctorate would be very useful to me in my role, and I know it'd be valuable to the company as a whole. Then, I would explain how list a few of the major goals or initiatives you'd be able to accomplish with your degree. Tell them what the impact of those responsibilities would be. You know, like making the company more efficient, increasing margins, managing great talent, upping the company's profile in your industry, whatever it is.
[00:37:11] Honestly, these things usually come down to a handful of key benefits, so just point to the most important ones for the company. No need for a huge laundry list, and if you can attach a number to those, that's going to be a lot better. The bean counters need to sign off on this at some point and then shoot your shot. And yes, this is where you can be very direct. You can say something like, "All right, this program's going to take three years to complete. It'll cost approximately, whatever the number is, and I'd like to ask if the company would be willing to subsidize it. In exchange, I'd be happy to continue working here for a certain number of years that feels right to all of us, just like I did with my masters, so I can keep everything that I learn in the family," and I wouldn't pin the details down too much or commit to any big promises. If they say yes, then you guys will negotiate down the road about how the tuition's going to be reimbursed, how many years you're going to stick around, all of that. All you need to do here is tee up the basic idea so that you can get a yes or you can get a no.
[00:38:09] And then, I'd wrap up with something positive. You could say, "Thank you so much for considering my request and for all of your support over the years. I'm hoping we can find a way to make this happen so I can continue to grow and contribute here for a long time to come." Just keep it short and sweet in terms of what to avoid saying, the one big mistake that I'd avoid is making this request too much about you. Obviously, it is about you, but I wouldn't say, "Hey, I'd love to get my PhD so people can call me doctor, and I can jump ship to another company at a higher salary as soon as possible. Obviously, you're not going to do that, but in fact, I wouldn't even mention my future career goals at all. They don't need to know about that. Just keep coming back to how your interests align with their interests. Keep translating your upside into the company's upside.
[00:38:56] So I hope these conversations go well. I have a feeling they will, who doesn't want more educated people in their ranks, who are then, of course, contractually obligated to stick around. And I hope they agree to pay for your program. That would be amazing. And if they don't, hey, that's cool too. You're going to figure out another way to make it happen. So good luck and I hope the next time you write us, we see those three letters after your name. So basically, you can't write in for like six years. No, but really I hope we hear good news from you on this front soon.
[00:39:23] And Gabriel, you know what's a great use of a PhD level salary? The products and services that support this show. We'll be right back.
[00:39:32] This episode is sponsored in part by Peloton. In the past couple of years, I've been paying a lot closer attention to my health, and one way is just by being more active. I always try to get 8,000 to 10,000 steps a day. I know that numbers are arbitrary, whatever. I was getting a lot of sun doing that though, and I needed a better way to build muscle and improve my cardiovascular health. But it's tricky for my schedule. I'm often on back-to-back calls. I'm reading audiobooks or reading actual books. I'm researching, I'm prepping an interview. I don't want to spend time getting in a car looking for parking, going around to a gym that's full of sweaty, gross people. Plus I got kids and aging parents at home. I can't just wake up and get out of the house with nobody noticing. Yes, even getting up early, working out at home before they're awake or during their naps is actually been the key for me to stay active and healthy. Many people fall off the wagon when they have these responsibilities, and I 100 percent understand how that. But now, you don't have to with Peloton. And that's one of several reasons why I really like Peloton. First of all, one membership is good for the entire family. They're not going to pull that hole, like everybody needs their own login for $10 a month. They don't do that. You can have a friendly competition with each other. The convenience factor can't really be beat. Peloton makes top-notch machines. The classes are taught by world-class instructors who are pretty funny and engaging. Peloton is known for their amazing bikes, which we have, but they also make a rowing machine, which personally I kind of think is a little bit more my style slash fun. Rowing is great for a full-body workout. It's really good for improving your cardiovascular endurance, and I can get my heart pumping in the morning before the kids wake up or get in a quick class if somebody cancels a call. Also, with Peloton, you can lean on the power of community. A lot of people say, okay, I like going to workout at clubs. I know you don't like them. You say they're gross. There's a lot of other people there that keep them motivated. All right, my dad's there right now. He's probably been there for three hours. He's one of those guys who socializes there. With Peloton, you can see who's in class with you. You can do virtual high fives with each other. The instructors, as I said, are really engaging, might be really funny, might even call you out during a live class. You can also add friends on there, have the friendly or not-so-friendly competition. There are leaderboards. I think the gamification element is not only addicting, but motivating in a way that's not sort of toxic or negative. Also, it's a very supportive place on that note. So it does keep you motivated, especially when you feel like maybe you're burning out, your workouts are in vain, you're trying to get over the hump of the first few days or weeks or whatever of any new habit. I think the community element is a great motivational tool to keep people like you and I staying healthy, staying active without having somebody sweat all over me and or my machine. So right now is a good time to get rowing with Peloton Row. Really, it's a fun experience. There's a form thing in there that teaches you how to do it better and grades you. And Peloton offers a variety of classes for all levels and game-changing features that help you get rowing or advance what you can already do. So go explore Peloton Row and their financing options at onepeloton.com/row.
[00:42:31] If you like this episode of Feedback Friday and you found our advice valuable, I invite you to do what other smart and considerate listeners do, take a moment and support our amazing sponsors. All of the deals, all the discount codes are all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. You can also search for any sponsor using the AI chatbot on the website as well. Thanks so much for supporting those who support us. It does keep us going. It makes it possible for us to continue creating these episodes week after week.
[00:42:56] And now back to Feedback Friday.
[00:43:01] All right, what's next?
[00:43:02] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hey guys. A friend of mine lives across the street from a duplex where a tenant has started dealing methamphetamine.
[00:43:08] Jordan Harbinger: Hmm.
[00:43:09] Gabriel Mizrahi: A meth camp has popped up on the street in front of the dealer's home, and as you can imagine, the new neighbors have made the neighborhood chaotic, stressful, and dangerous.
[00:43:18] Jordan Harbinger: Man, that's methed up. Anyway—
[00:43:22] Gabriel Mizrahi: Not enough dad jokes in this episode, but I think we hit it.
[00:43:25] Jordan Harbinger: Go ahead. I'll be over here.
[00:43:27] Gabriel Mizrahi: No, you nailed it. Great.
[00:43:29] The police have said outright that the criminal activity at the duplex is very low priority for them. The city has told the neighborhood that they need more compassion and to be patient. A complaint with the local zoning inspectors has been filed. The meth dealer is living in an RV parked in the front yard of the duplex, which is 100 percent illegal. But the municipality and the police have shirked their duties. So the Bureau of Development Services — Jordan, I haven't even heard of some of these organizations. This is insane.
[00:43:58] Jordan Harbinger: No, I know. I'm like, if there's so many, look at this bureaucracy that's completely useless and not doing anything.
[00:44:03] Gabriel Mizrahi: It's just this network of nameless, faceless bureaucracies that are not stepping up. It's just bananas.
[00:44:08] Jordan Harbinger: Ugh.
[00:44:09] Gabriel Mizrahi: So the Bureau of Development Services has a several-month backlog of citizen complaints and every state and local agency responsible for cleaning up this mess is completely failing at their duties. So I'm now looking for a way to make the criminal activity at the duplex, the owner's problem. They're local attorneys and they're aware of the criminal activity at their rental, but they refuse to do anything about it. Knowing that no local agency will hold them accountable, I sent an email to the State Bar requesting guidance, but I haven't heard from them. My next move is to the National Bar Association to rat out our state bar association. I understand that this approach is a bit sideways, but I'm all about creativity when it comes to dealing with slow-moving bureaucracies. Am I barking up the wrong tree or should I lean on the slum lords with pressure from their governing body? Signed, Causing Ruckus to Deal With This Rubbish When the Government is Being Sluggish.
[00:45:05] Jordan Harbinger: Ooh, this is an interesting one. I love a little conundrum like this that might have some sideways, clever solution. On the other hand, this is also really depressing and super frustrating. This sounds like one of those problems that several agencies could solve if they even freaking want to do for one second, but it just slips through the cracks and festers because our cities are not equipped or incentivized to deal with it. Part of me also wonders if these landlords are well connected in the area, maybe they're insiders around there and the local government just doesn't want to go up against people with money and legal muscle. Who knows?
[00:45:38] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:45:38] Jordan Harbinger: You'd think that the police would prioritize drug activity because they prioritize drug activity, but apparently in this case they don't.
[00:45:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:45:45] Jordan Harbinger: Either way, it sucks and it's nice that you're going to bat for your friend. You're a true lawyer becoming a nuisance like this, but you're using your powers for good. I can appreciate that. We wanted to talk to an expert here. Of course. So we reached out to defense attorney and friend of the show, Corbin Payne. And Corbin's take right off the bat is that this probably won't qualify for quick action from the licensing board. Those state bars, they're more concerned with attorneys who commit malpractice, period. I mean, there's a lot of that already. Now, attorneys can't be committing crimes and retain their licensure, but the problem is, according to Corbin, State Bars, they just don't have the ability to conduct investigations into whether attorneys are committing crimes or engaging in wrongdoing outside of their practice.
[00:46:29] Now, if the police were to charge these attorneys with something and they got convicted, that's a different story. But investigating it themselves is quite another, it's just not going to happen. So in Corbin's view, you have two paths forward, and unfortunately, neither of them is particularly quick or easy, but here they are. Option one, your friend pursues a civil lawsuit. It sounds like their quiet enjoyment of their home is being infringed upon. Same with the neighbors, I'm guessing. That could mean that your friend has a cause of action against the tenant of the house, the drug dealer, and of course, the landlords. Now, this will obviously involve hiring an attorney and that costs money, especially if you're going up against two other attorneys. But Corbin said that this has potential. The owners, the tenant, the drug dealers, none of them probably want any publicity or official attention. A court case would 100 percent involve publicity and official attention because anything that happens in a lawsuit of this sort is public information, and that alone might get them to take action.
[00:47:28] You know, you really don't want to be renting apartments in a building, and the first thing that shows up on Google is people trying to get a meth dealer out from the building and out from in front of the dam building. Also, I wonder if you could somehow crowdfund this lawsuit from the entire neighborhood, which would ease costs and essentially turn this into a class-action lawsuit type of thing. Lawyer or not, you don't want to get sued by 27 different people at the same time because then you are spending all your time defending this and everybody else is pitching in, you know, a hundred bucks a week or whatever to get these people out of here.
[00:47:59] On that note, your second option is publicity. As Corbin put it to us, lawyers these days are seeing common citizens bringing about very real change with smartphone pictures and viral social media posts. Lawyers hate to admit that, but it's true. It can motivate bad actors to clean up their act and it can motivate government agencies to do their jobs. So that's your other option. Name and shame them online. Maybe contact a couple of local journalists on Twitter and see if they're interested in coming by, you know, Channel Four Action News shows up with cameras and is like, "Wow, this is a real meth camp. Look at this. And the dealer reportedly lives right here in this RV in front of 427 Rockefeller Lane." That's not going to be a good look for those landlords. And that might get the police to go, "Oh, uh, oops, my wife is watching this on the news and now I have to tell her that I'm not doing anything about it because I'm lazy."
[00:48:48] Gabriel Mizrahi: Super smart ideas. Yeah, just put them under the microscope. It could work, but whatever you do, the key will be documentation. We talk about this all the time — document, document, document, right? In Corbin's view, you or your friend probably won't win a civil case on mirror allegations alone, a judge will want to see photos, videos, other evidence to be convinced that this is what's happening. And the same goes if you want to go the publicity route. As you know, you could be sued for defamation if any of your allegations are false or unverifiable. So Corbin's recommendation, if you decide to take the publicity route, he strongly encourages you to avoid editorializing and to strictly report on the verifiable incontrovertible facts.
[00:49:29] In other words, if you never see meth or money change hands, you should probably be very cautious about confidently asserting that the dealer is selling meth. You can describe weird chemical smells coming out of the RV. You can describe a bunch of shady people coming around at odd hours. You can report on the stuff that you see and you hear in the camp, or that your friend sees, but you'll want to stay away from making accusations that aren't directly supported by the facts. That said, you can talk about how you ask the local authorities to take action and they apparently refuse to do so. That is factual.
[00:50:01] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah. Also, you know, if you can have yourself or a neighbor just put up one of Nest cams or something and aim it at the meth camp.
[00:50:08] Gabriel Mizrahi: Nice.
[00:50:08] Jordan Harbinger: And if anything crazy happens, you're just going to have a cloud recording of the fight that broke out at four o'clock in the morning, or the guy who got stabbed by the other guy at 13 different times on different occasions last month. You're going to have video evidence of all that, so you don't have to hear the ruckus, go out there with your phone, put yourself in danger, and running around filming. You can just have a feed from your camera and/or maybe even a few people's cameras from different angles of all the stuff that's going on. And you're going to have a trove of evidence after just a few weeks or a few months of running it.
[00:50:37] Also unethical in a way, and I'm definitely not telling you to do this particular thing, but a friend of a friend who definitely was not me, also had a meth dealer in their building in Hollywood, and a brothel was operating out of the same place. A landlord wouldn't do anything they knew about it. The police wouldn't do anything. They also knew about it and they would say like, "Don't call until there's violence. We don't have time for this." So the guy who again, was definitely not me, printed up some cards that said something like party pills and another word that starts with P that I probably shouldn't say on this particular podcast, apartment 406 something, whatever address, Hollywood Boulevard. And they put the cards on the playground of a nearby school. And then, my friend, who, again, I cannot stress this enough, was absolutely, positively not me, called 911. And he was like, "I was jogging by this elementary school and I found this advertisement. Somebody's got to do something about this." And you know, it wasn't me because I wouldn't be caught dead jogging. Long story short, the apartments were raided not just by the LAPD but the DEA rolled in with full-on raid gear.
[00:51:45] Gabriel Mizrahi: Are you serious?
[00:51:45] Jordan Harbinger: And I remember when it happened because all I heard was boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, "Search warrant, search warrant." And that was the end of that.
[00:51:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Oh my God. That's amazing. Wow. Your friend is brilliant. I can't believe your friend did that.
[00:52:00] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, he's a devious mofo.
[00:52:01] Gabriel Mizrahi: That's a great story.
[00:52:02] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, look, the authorities wouldn't do anything. They either couldn't or wouldn't do anything, didn't give a crap. And those people needed to be, they needed a root canal. That whole building, you know, that floor needed to be taken care of. It was gross. I mean, they were finding meth bags everywhere. It was just a whole thing. Again, don't do that. It's probably illegal, I don't know. But I thought that was a unique solution to a similar problem. And I hope that gives you a way forward here.
[00:52:28] To quote Corbin, your friend is a taxpaying member of their community and they don't deserve to be treated with such disdain. So good luck and I hope these attorneys wake up and take action soon.
[00:52:39] All right, what's next?
[00:52:40] Gabriel Mizrahi: Hi, Jordan and Gabe. I'm a 35-year-old guy with a family, and I was recently diagnosed with cancer. I didn't keep it a secret, and everyone I talked to was extremely supportive and tried to help in different ways, except one of my best friends who was behaving strangely and keeping his distance. Then, a month into treatment, my friend finally wrote me asking me how I was doing. Later, I learned from my other friend that he actually pushed this best friend of mine to reach out. I kind of confronted him about it and he said that he just doesn't know what to do. I don't want to sound bitchy, but since everyone else was so helpful and supportive, even people I never would've imagined, I kind of expected more. I now don't really consider this guy my friend anymore. Am I asking for too much? Am I being too harsh? Signed, A Patient Out of Patience for This Total Abdication.
[00:53:32] Jordan Harbinger: Oh, man, I'm really sorry to hear about your diagnosis. This must be a super intense time for you. 35, man, you got a family. It just sucks. There's no way around it. This is a huge thing to go through, and my heart really does go out to you in many ways. This is just a lot of people's worst nightmare. But I got to say, it's amazing to hear that so many people have rallied around you. That's beautiful, man.
[00:53:53] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:53:54] Jordan Harbinger: And oftentimes that's the weird upside to going through a major crisis. The flip side of that, of course, is that you find out who isn't really there for you, and it sounds like that's kind of what's happening with this friend of yours. So to answer your question, no, you're not asking for too much. You're going through freaking cancer, man. It's not unreasonable to expect your friends to be there for you, especially somebody you thought was your best friend. I'm sure it was very hurtful and disappointing to not get a call or even a text, asking how you're feeling. He could do anything really. I mean, something that's like table stakes in a friendship. It's not hard to do.
[00:54:30] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah.
[00:54:30] Jordan Harbinger: He should have reached out and a story. But here's the thing. The way your friend is acting or not acting, that says more about him and his ability to handle events like this than it does about you. Like he said, when you confronted him, and I'm glad you did, by the way, because these are healthy conflicts in a friendship. You expressed yourself and you gave him a shot to do better, which was the right move. Like he said, he just doesn't know what to, which I think is code for, "I'm useless in this situation because it's too intense and it's too different from anything I've had to deal with before. So I figured I'd just do nothing rather than do it wrong."
[00:55:04] Gabriel Mizrahi: Right. Which might also be code for, "I am terrified that my friend has cancer and I'm very uncomfortable in heavy situations, so I'm just going to stay away because it's way easier."
[00:55:14] Jordan Harbinger: Exactly. I'm 95 percent sure this guy is going through his own complicated experience over there, coming to terms with the fact that his close friend, who's probably about his age, is dealing with something as intense as cancer.
[00:55:26] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:55:27] Jordan Harbinger: And that speaks to his fear, his anxiety, his inability to have some intense conversations and be vulnerable. Not whether you deserve that support.
[00:55:36] Gabriel Mizrahi: That is exactly right. But that doesn't mean that you can't decide whether this guy holds an important place in your life. You know, crises like this, to Jordan's point, they really clarify who and what are truly important in your life. And when a bunch of your friends and your family and your coworkers show up in this incredible way and surround you with love in this moment, and then there's this guy who hits you up a month later, like, "Uh, yeah man, I didn't know how to ask you about it, so, uh, sorry." You know, that's a moment where you just know who your true ride-or-die's are, and that sucks, but it's also really important.
[00:56:14] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, it was really important but painful.
[00:56:16] Gabriel Mizrahi: Definitely painful. And I think what's hard about these moments is realizing like this is the person he was all along. I just didn't know it because our relationship hadn't been tested in such a profound way.
[00:56:26] Jordan Harbinger: Yeah, that's interesting. It's kind of jarring to find out that somebody isn't quite who you thought they were because you never needed them to be that person—
[00:56:34] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yes.
[00:56:34] Jordan Harbinger: But then the sh*t hits the fan and you realize the truth and you're almost mourning the version of that friend you thought you had that you actually never had. And you might even feel misled and weirded out on top of being hurt. It's probably how it feels to be cheated on or something in a more mild way.
[00:56:49] Gabriel Mizrahi: Yeah, it's such a good point. There's a lot going on in that experience for him. But the same idea holds true in the other direction. I mean, look at these amazing friends who have gathered around him. He didn't know how much they cared about him until things got real. So that's wonderful.
[00:57:02] Jordan Harbinger: It really is. He might be losing this friend, but he's gaining a bunch of others. And at a certain point, especially as you get older, you go through some stuff, you just want to focus on those people and let the other ones go. And that might seem harsh, but I think it's a healthy kind of harsh.
[00:57:17] Gabriel Mizrahi: Mm-hmm.
[00:57:18] Jordan Harbinger: You're raising your expectations of people, you're becoming more secure in your need for connection and support. And that's, in my opinion, that's a good thing. And look, there's so much to be grateful for here. You're young, you're surrounded by your family, your friends, your wife, all this love more support than even you knew you had. You're getting treatment. It sounds like you have a lot of positive things going on for you here. And once you're on the other side of this, and I'm confident you will be, you're going to find that you have a whole new lens on your life and on the people you keep in it. And as painful as that is sometimes, that is a huge gift.
[00:57:54] So hang in there, man. We're sending you and your wife a huge hug. We're wishing you the best with your treatment. Take care of yourself and please send us an update in a few months. You're talking to two guys who would love to hear from you, whether you sound bitchy or not.
[00:58:09] Hope you all enjoyed that. I want to thank everyone who wrote in this week and everybody who listened. Thank you so much. Go back and check out Florence Williams and Mark Manson if you haven't had a chance to do so yet.
[00:58:19] All of these people I book on the show using my network software, systems, tiny habits. It's a system and not a schmoozy gross, icky-feeling kind of set of habits. It's over there on the Thinkific platform. The course is free. jordanharbinger.com/course. Don't kick a can down the road. A lot of people do that. You need to make relationships before you need them. Dig that well before you get thirsty. Once you need the relationships, well, it's kind of too late to make them. The drills take a few minutes a day. I wish I knew this stuff when I was younger. Damn sure, it's help my business, help my personal life. Again, all for free, jordanharbinger.com/course.
[00:58:54] A link to the show notes for the episode can be found at jordanharbinger.com. Transcripts in the show notes. Advertisers, deals, and discounts, all at jordanharbinger.com/deals. And go try the AI chatbot, jordanharbinger.com/ai. I'm at @JordanHarbinger on Twitter and Instagram. You can also connect with me on LinkedIn. Gabe is on Instagram, @GabrielMizrahi, or on Twitter at @GabeMizrahi.
[00:59:16] This show is created in association with PodcastOne. My team is Jen Harbinger, Jase Sanderson, Robert Fogarty, Ian Baird, Millie Ocampo, Josh Ballard, and of course, Gabriel Mizrahi. Our advice and opinions are our own, and I'm a lawyer, but I'm not your lawyer, never was a good lawyer. Do your own research before implementing anything you hear on the show.
[00:59:34] Ditto Corbin Payne. Dr. Margolis' input is general psychological information based on research and clinical experience. It's intended to be general and informational in nature. It does not represent or indicate an established clinical or professional relationship with those inquiring for guidance.
[00:59:48] Remember, we rise by lifting others. Share the show with those you love. And if you found the episode useful, please share it with somebody else who can use the advice we gave here today. 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.
[01:00:03] You're about to hear a preview of The Jordan Harbinger Show with Kareem Hijazi. One of the most skilled cybersecurity professionals in the game.
[01:00:11] Karim Hijazi: Let's face the music now guys. We're really in a position that's really, really precarious because they don't need to deploy the proverbial cyber threat. It's been deployed.
[01:00:22] Critical infrastructure rely on cloud infrastructure at this point. This is an issue of medical records, water treatment facilities. If they all go down in unison and in symphony, we've got a massive problem on our hands, not just because databases aren't accessible. That's not a geeky problem. Who knows? We might be days away from something that feels more kinetic today.
[01:00:44] Like, no kidding, today we're talking, we're still seeing machines in there, running control panel systems that are running on like Windows XP, old Sunset software that frankly they can't swap away from because the control panel systems and the operational technology run on that operating system and they can't be upgraded.
[01:01:03] You just change the pH levels or the potability of some sort of gray water and you got mass dysentery and now you've got people flooding into the hospitals. Now, you turn off the power grids or you start attacking power grids and now, you've got mass chaos. We're literally waiting for that. We're waiting for them to flip a switch and say, "Okay, let's turn that access on that we have."
[01:01:21] We're at an inflection point with this situation with Ukraine that it'll escalate. Imagine if we're really up for the end of the movie Fight Club, if we've ever seen the end of that, where literally the entire system goes down. That's not too far off from a cyber perspective, sadly. There is a great end under the bed and there is a string going out the window and it's just a matter of pulling it.
[01:01:40] Jordan Harbinger: To learn more about how cyber attacks can lead to deadly kinetic warfare. Check out episode 647 of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:01:50] Special thanks to Peloton for sponsoring this episode of The Jordan Harbinger Show.
[01:01:56] This episode is sponsored in part by the Mea Culpa podcast. Mea Culpa is hosted by Michael Cohen, who is Donald Trump's fixer, lawyer, right hand for over a decade. He, of course, went to prison because he defied his former boss. The Mea Culpa podcast is his redemption tour of sorts. Mea Culpa with Michael Cohen delivers political news, raw and unfiltered. Plus Michael, well, let's just say he's an opinionated guy. Twice weekly Mea Culpa features the most important people in politics, offering listeners rare insight into what's happening that they can get no place else. His guests are a who's who of politics, media, and beyond, especially on the left, as you might guess — James Carville. Joe Trippy, John Dean, Laurence Tribe. Ari Melber, Joy Reid, Kathy Griffin — oh, she's a fan favorite, isn't she? Congressman Steve Cohen. Elie Honig, Neal Katyal, Norm Eisen, Molly Jong-Fast, Sam Donaldson, Ben Stiller. That's probably a fun one. You never know who's going to show up and what they will say. And if you're on the right, you're probably going to hate this podcast. Don't shoot the messenger here. But hey, if you lean left, do yourself a favor, check out Mea Culpa wherever you get your podcasts. Find it in your favorite podcast app.
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