Matthew Hussey ON: How to Get Over Your Ex & Find True Love in Your Relationships | Transcription
Transcription for the video titled "Matthew Hussey ON: How to Get Over Your Ex & Find True Love in Your Relationships".
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If your listening to this and you're in an unhappy situation, I get it, I get how hard it is. One of the things that can help is to say, this demon would come out with another person too. - Hey everyone, welcome back to On Purpose, the number one health podcast in the world. Thanks to each and every single one of you that come back every week to listen, learn and grow. Now you know that I love sitting down with experts, people that have dedicated their life, their time and their years to understanding more about human behavior, human dynamics and understanding how our mind works. And today I'm sitting down with someone that I wanted to meet for a long, long time. I've watched his YouTube videos for years. I've been a fan of his content for many, many years on Instagram and other platforms. We've been trying to get together and we've finally made it happen. I'm talking about none other than New York Times best selling author, international speaker and dating expert Matthew, Haci, Matthew, thank you for being here man. - Sup man, thanks for having me. I share the sentiment. I've wanted to do this for years and somehow the planets never aligned until now. - I know, I remember messaging with you on Instagram. I think I was actually in London at the time, a few years back and there was a video that we were gonna do together. It was one of these dating videos that you were doing and you're like, "Oh, do you wanna?" And I was in London but I don't know how we kept missing. - Yeah, we even had a brief phone call where we connected and got on really well and I know we're both mutual friends of Lewis House and it's fun though to finally be in the same room and do this, it's fun. - Yeah and I feel like it's in the mantis occasion because England's playing in the final on Sunday. We're like, "We've been brought together with two Brits." And have you decided where you're watching the final? - You don't know. - I have to be in true introverted fashion. I have to be at home. Like, I like being with my family 'cause I do like the energy of people who really care. What drives me mad is when you've got people who have no idea what they're talking about yelling at a screen during a match and I genuinely love hearing all of the commentary. So like, I'm one of those people, I'm a fight fan, like boxing is on. When there's a big boxing match, I'm like, all right, everyone can come over but just, I wanna hear the commentary. So like, I don't want, I hate that bar environment of everyone yelling at the screen. - Yeah, so yeah. - Yeah, yeah. - Oh, I get that. Yeah, no, I've actually, I lead a spiritual book club on Sunday and half of it is bang in the first half of the game. So I'm only gonna get towards the second half. - It's hard for me to imagine anything more different than the energy of English fans back home than a spiritual book club. - Literally, this is like a really, it's like an intimate, it's a group of friends that need a spiritual book club for, happens every Sunday and it's 11 to one. So 11 to 12, I'm gonna be doing, sorry, 11 to one. And so the game starts at 12 here. - Man, that's funny. - Yeah, I'll get this second half. But no, thank you for being here, man. And like I said, I've watched your videos for years, senior interviews, senior books, senior, you know, not senior on stage in person. I look forward to being able to do that. But I wanted to start with the question. I'm not sure if I've seen you been asked this before but I wanted to ask you like, what's your favorite love story ever? Or is there one that you have?
Exploring Perspectives On Love And Relationships
What’s your favorite story of love? (03:09)
Whether it's a real life, one a client, a personal experience, a book, is, you know, what's your favorite story of love? - That is a really tricky question. There's a movie I saw recently, it's a Japanese movie called "Wethering With You". - I've not seen that. - It's an animated movie. This guy, he created what was at one time the biggest, grossing anime of all time. But this movie "Wethering With You" is about a young guy and a girl who, you know, in this kind of, this young love, there's this kind of mythical story where it's constantly raining in Tokyo and she has the power to make the rain go away. They call her a sunshine girl. But, and everyone, she's so prized because she's the sunshine girl. And so she's constantly called upon by people who are running events or fireworks displays or whatever to come along and make it stop raining only. And I spoiler alert for anyone who's not seen "Wethering With You", by the way. Come back in three minutes. - But there's a, every time she does it, she, she start, a piece of herself starts to disappear. And it gets to the point where she completely floats up into the sky and no longer has a presence here on earth because she's given so much as the sunshine girl. And there's a moment where he goes to save her from up in the clouds because he realizes she can't, you know, even if she comes back down to earth and never does another thing as a sunshine girl and all it does is rain all day, he still chooses her. - Wow. - And the, for me at least, I'm not saying the director meant this but it's so beautiful because it felt to me like a story of a person who is accepting that even if being with you means that it's raining, I still choose you. I don't just choose you when the sun is shining. And there's something stunningly beautiful to me about that because that's a much more grown up kind of love than the one that we tend to look for in our 20s or as teenagers and some of us for the rest of our lives where, you know, we love someone as long as the sun is shining but when the chips are down and when things are tough, they start reassessing everything. - That was a beautiful answer. I love that, that was wonderful. I mean, like, I love movies too. So when you said a movie and I've not seen that movie, so that sounds amazing. I love that. What a great love story. And yeah, now, I don't know, should I still watch the movie? - I really enjoy it. - It's still beautiful. - And there's another movie he did prior to that called "Your Name". - Okay. - And there's something very beautiful about his movies. Yeah, I would check them out. - Yeah, okay, I'll take a look. Yeah, no, I love that. And it's so interesting with what you referred to there, this idea of the view we have of love and relationships in our teens and our 20s or like you said, for some people their whole life. How do you think your view of love has changed while helping people create, find, keep love?
The importance of reevaluating what is actually important in a partner (06:22)
I mean, you know, you've been on this amazing journey. You've been doing this for what? - Decade now, 15 years. - 15 years, right? Okay, so you've been doing this for 15 years. How has your view of love changed over the last 15 years of actually working with people and speaking on stages, being interviewed in all these places? - I suppose getting older myself, and I realize I'm still relatively speaking a young man, but getting older myself, it's become much more apparent to me, the importance of re-evaluating what is actually important in a partner. And we tend to, our younger selves, we do have this list of things that we think we want that seem important, might be charisma, it might be the fact that, you know, someone is super sexy 'cause they can speak three languages, or that, you know, they've achieved a certain status in their life, or an award, or whatever, they can play the guitar, and we rate these things as these things. And when we think of losing someone, we look at all of those things and go, I couldn't lose them, you know, they're funny, and they're charismatic, and they're super fun to be around, and they're sexy, and they can play the guitar, and they can, you know, speak three languages, and it still is a kind of Instagram profile version of a person. And someone recently said to me, like, I'm in a relationship with a guy, and, you know, he plays the guitar, and I find that really sexy, and he's really good looking, and I'm like, he doesn't need, in order to be in a relationship with you, he doesn't need to be great at music, he needs to be great at a relationship. - Yep. - And if you wanna hear someone play guitar really well, go to a John Mercon, so. - Yeah, yeah, but I'm cheering away. - Yeah, like, you don't need that every day in your relationship. - Yeah. - What's important in a relationship is someone who is really competent in a relationship, and has those skills, and those skills are hard won, is one of the reasons that relationships with big age gaps don't work. It's not because there is necessarily a chasm in the way these two people feel. It's that there is a huge chasm when it comes to their relationship competence, and their experience, and that really does matter. And if you're with someone who has a far, lower level of relationship experience, then they either have to learn through you, which is gonna be a painful process. They're gonna make a lot of mistakes, they're gonna hurt you a lot in the process, that you're gonna feel like, you're gonna have to be careful of avoiding the role of teacher, constantly in the relationship, and try and be equals in a situation that's inherently kind of unequal. And you're gonna have to hope that they do learn those skills. You're making quite a big bet on the idea that one day they will have that skill set. Some people take most of their lives to get it, and some people never learn it because they're not the kind of people that want to grow, and be self-aware, and do the work. And so I have come to really believe that, my view of love has changed to the extent that I think, firstly, the idea of, you know, is it about meeting the right person, or is it about being the right time? And I've started to wait, my opinion, far more towards time. - Wow. - That when you have decided it's the right time for you to really meet someone, you go into love with a completely different intentionality. Love isn't happening to you. It's not this wave that's washing over you, which is super easy. When a wave's washing over you, you just stand there and just bask in the goodness of how wonderful it feels to feel that sort of drug. But that's not the same thing as intentionally. There's a difference between winning the lottery and starting a business. You know, when you start a business, there's a method, there's a practical, there's a pragmatism to it. The things you need to do in order to build this thing. And I think that that to me, I don't think I've developed a less romantic view. I actually, if anything, have more and more and more come to see a person who's in a place where they're willing to actually do the work of a relationship as romantic. - Yeah. - And I think people consistently get burned when they're not factoring into the equation of how right someone is, whether this person is demonstrating, A, that they are also at a time in their life where they're looking for the same thing, and B, that they have genuine, great relationship skills. Like, you know, we're all gonna argue at some point, but how do we argue? - Yeah. - Right, that's just one area, but it's a huge thing. So that to me would probably be the biggest shift. I believe in timing more these days. And I believe that we undervalue to an incredible extent, genuine relationship skills, and we overvalue just kind of mindless attraction. - Yeah, yeah, I love that answer, man. That's so fascinating to compare person versus time. And yeah, I often say to my friends, like the most romantic thing in the world is someone who's trying to build relationship competence. Like that is the most romantic expression that someone can have. I love the way you talk about relationship skills, and we're talking about relationship competence. I find that actually, and I can say this for my relationships too, before I met my wife, or with now, relationship competence always felt like both people didn't have it. I don't think I was in many relationships where I had it and the person didn't. I do think for many years, it was just we both, like me and the other person, we both had zero relationship competence. How do you think people build relationship competence?
It’s uncomfortable but maybe it’s teaching you something (12:44)
Because it almost feels like, and you're right, and I know we both agree on this, that you just expect to know how to be in a relationship, and you're almost expected to know that, oh yeah, you started dating, and then you know what to do next, and none of us know what to do next, or now. Tell us about how you go about building relationship competence, and what are the skills that you kind of break it down into for people to think about that. - Well firstly, I had very much the same experience as you. - I always thought I was such a great guy in relationships. I really did like, I was so, you know, the line I was used to say about myself is, you know, yeah, maybe I wasn't ready, or maybe I wasn't in a place where I wanted the same thing, but I was a great partner while I was in it. It wasn't true. - No. - I was, what's the word? I was a gentleman, I was respectful. I, in many ways, I've always been kind, that's always been a through line of my life, but you can be kind and dumb. - Yeah. - And you can hurt a lot of people when you're kind and dumb, you know, and so I look back on myself, and sometimes it takes someone who's better than you at a certain part of a relationship. Maybe not the whole thing, but they come along and, and you notice that they, you know, going back to that example, argue differently than you do. You went into fight mode, and they, they went into compassion mode and said, look, babe, I know you on, I know you feel like this, but here's like the way you're reacting right now, here's how it's making me feel. And you go, oh, that was different, what was that? It's like you learn a new move. - Yeah, yeah. - What was that move? - I haven't seen that one before. I'm usually, I've been in relationships where I say this, and then you give me the silent treatment, and then I have just, I feel justified in then being mean, because you're going silent, and now we amp it up, and now all of a sudden you, you, you come across someone who takes you off-road, and that's a scary moment. And when someone takes you off-road, you have two choices. You can either, you can either be afraid of that. And it is something uncomfortable about it, 'cause you're not used to it. Even kindness can be uncomfortable if you're not used to it. - Absolutely. - Right, but when someone takes you off-road, that really is an opportunity to watch what someone else is doing. I think the same is true in business, right? It's you see someone else who just did a different thing, like in your industry, someone took a turn that everyone else didn't. And you can either be the person who says, what are they, what's that? Why are they doing that? That's the stupid, what they think that's gonna work. Like, or you can go, well, that's interesting. No one else is doing that. Why are they doing that? Like, let me check that out. Like, you could be curious about it, especially if you think, oh, there's something to that, what they're doing. - Yes, yes. - And so I think that the exploring areas where someone isn't doing the same thing as you, and it takes you into a different experience, that's not bad, it almost feels like, oh, this is uncomfortable, but maybe it's showing me something I'm not very good at. You know, maybe they just, maybe they went out with their friends, and I picked a fight because I'm jealous about something that I think is, I've got this portrayal of what's going on, whatever. I went out with my friends and they said, "Hey, have the best night, babe." - Yeah. - And I'm like, oh, that's weird. Everyone I've been with so far is, when I go out with my friends, they get super jealous. - Yeah. - And that always makes me feel like I've got something to resist. - Yes, yes. - But now I just went out and they said, "Have the best night, by the way, you look gorgeous." And I'm like, okay, what's that? Oh, that's a new move, which is what's that one. You know, and you learn something and that you pay attention 'cause you go, that was really interesting. That made me, my God, that made me, that made me, when I was out, think about them half the time. You know, and think what a sexy, confident person they are. - Yeah. - That's it, I wanna make her feel that when she next goes out. - Yeah, yeah. - And that, apparently, that's how you do that. Oh, that's interesting. You learn from it. So I think that there's a learning that we get from relationships, but in order to do that, you actually have to be in a space of being willing to put eyes on yourself. - Yeah. - And in a constant student mindset, which most of us are not. You know, we do go into relationships. A lot of us thinking, we know it all, we learn it all from our last relationship. But there's, there is, it's a cliche, but there's just, there's always another level. There are so many levels to life, and it fascinates me because I'm always thinking that, I'm just thinking, my God, there are so many people that are so good. - Yeah. - At so many different things. Like not, I'm not saying everyone's better than us. They might be good at this one piece of the puzzle, but you watch how they do it, and you go, that's really interesting. There's something to learn from that. But if we're constantly trying to defend our own position and trying to feel like what we do is the right way, we'll never, we'll never learn that. - Yeah. - And I do, I'm a believer in, I'm a believer in therapy, or anything that gets you to be, to look at yourself in a constructive way. And someone in front of you, who's not gonna give you the answers that you want. You know, I remember a long time ago, me saying to a friend, like, I was in this relationship and I was like, you know, this person wants to speak a lot. And I've got this and I've got this and I've got this. And I was expecting him to be like, well, she sounds like a lot of work. She sounds really difficult, man. That's, yeah, like, tell me about it. And instead he went, I'm kind of with her on this one. - Yeah. - Like, actually it's super important that you, he was like, he actually said to me, he's like, funny, he goes, you, he goes, I go to the gym one tenth of the time you do, but I have a body like a bag of milk. He said, so you get what you pay for. You know, and in your relationship, you get what you pay for. You know, if you want it to be great, invest in it. And that's that friend or that mentor or that therapist. - Don't ever see them again. - Fire them immediately. - They're way in gold because we surround ourselves with, you know, people, you know, men surround themselves with the boys club. Oh man, she sounds different. Oh, you know, so high maintenance, blah, blah, blah. And women surround themselves with their friends who sit around and say, I can't believe he did. I can't believe he said that. See, I can't, and half of them sometimes are sitting there going, you kind of seem like the unreasonable one here. But they don't tell her. - Yeah. - And then she gets further ingrained in this way of thinking. In fact, they even make amper up. - Yeah. - And send her back into a relationship charged now. And even more defiant. And now, you know, you get even more conflict. So that, those to me are some of the key ways to learn. And just to be open. Always, always, always, always be open. - Yeah, I love that. I love that. I think it's so true. And I love what you said about how like, it's not like you're gonna meet the mentor in your partner or the coach or the guru, but like they may be just better at one thing. Or they may be greater, just one area of a relationship. And that's what you're kind of mining and picking from my, when I look back at what you're saying in my relationship, I'm trying to reflect it. In my teens, I realized I had a serious issue with, I just loved being loved. And so I was kind, I don't know if I would say much of what you said. I was always kind. I was always a gentleman. I was always like generous. But I realized that in my teens, I would go above and beyond to want someone to fall in love with me. And that's all I wanted. All I actually wanted was for someone to fall in love with me. And it didn't actually matter who it was sometimes. Like it wasn't even that I really liked them or knew them. I understood them. I just wanted that feeling of this person loves me. And what would often happen is they would fall in love with me because I'd be the perfect guy by giving them gifts and remembering this and whatever it was. And then I would feel like they're not giving me anything back. Now I feel like the one I'm the one who's doing all the loving and there's no love back, which I've only created myself because of my crazy cycle. Totally relate to all of that.
When all the special moves don’t work and your genuine self comes out (21:21)
And I was that guy too. And those guys will often look at guys who are kind of the textbook jerk and be like, well, he's awful. Yes. Like, you know, he slept with her and he completely ghosted her and he never called her again or he disrespect, whatever. He's easy to point to that guy. And being like, what a piece of crap that guy is. But we're more dangerous. Yeah. I would then break up with them because I didn't feel loved. And then I'd feel like I was the victim and that I'd been the one not treated well. And then my wife broke me because I tried to, I did the same thing with her. I was always like, but she wasn't impressed by any of the ways I tried to love her, apart from being me. And that was when it all kind of like unraveled. And I was like, oh, I finally found someone who actually didn't want all the stuff I was trying to do to get her to love me. And so my wife was the kind of person who broke through that barrier because she just didn't care about the stuff or the memory or the gifting or the extravagant, like she hated all that stuff. And so all of a sudden my technique wasn't, not, it wasn't even a technique. It was genuine in my delusion, but it wasn't working anymore. And that's when I had to really look at it because I really loved my wife. And I was like, oh, I actually have to really look at this. And so she was the one who broke that and taught me that idea. That's beautiful. Yeah, so it took someone who valued something completely different than the thing that the weapon you were used to using, right? - Toes exactly the move. - The move that I was using. - She took away all of your special moves. - Yeah, all the power part. - You have to fight this fight now with none of these special moves. And then you're all of a sudden, like you say, it's like being stripped bare. Now I get a chance to truly be loved for who I am, not the performance that I'm doing in the beginning, which as you say, it's not that it's not genuine. - Yeah, it wasn't like I was manipulative. It wasn't manipulative. - But it's genuinely about getting something for ourselves. - Completely. - As opposed to genuinely about discovering somebody else or building something or whatever. And I did the same thing. And it's one of the great, you know, I deal with, my God, in my company, we're dealing with, I mean, millions of women a month worldwide, but tens of thousands in terms of real coaching. And one of the biggest problems is people falling for people really quickly.
The problem is people are falling in love too fast (23:56)
- Yes. - Falling in love too fast, where it's because they went on a couple of great dates with a guy. And they can look at the date and go, he was amazing. And you should have seen what he did and how he was on the date and all of that. And the thing I have to always break down is, that may not have been about you. It is about something he wanted you to feel by the end of the date. And not that, you know, I'm a, I kind of loathe this culture we have right now where everyone's a narcissist. - Yes, yes, yes. - We call it, we're so quick to like label. He's a narcissist. She's a narcissist. Like I'm like, not everyone, like, we all have a narcissistic streak. - Absolutely. - We all exhibit narcissistic behaviors at time. That doesn't mean we're a diagnosable narcissist. - Completely. - But a narcissistic streak we all have early in dating and to differing degrees is the desire to impress. - Yes. - Rather than connect. And so we go on a date with someone and, you know, at the height of it, if someone's really on the extreme end, they will give the greatest date of someone's life. - Yeah. - And that person goes away and they're like, this guy is amazing or this person. And they may have put on an amazing date, but you know nothing yet. And what's cool about your wife's, you know, going through that process with you is, you know, I can imagine for her, it's almost like, well, I wanna see how you are in week four. - Yeah. - Or I wanna see how you are in month three. - Yeah. - And until you've been there, you really don't know how great of a partner somebody is gonna be. - Yeah.
How can you be nervous when you’re valuing the right things? (25:47)
- And that's what I mean by, you know, when you ask me about what I've really learned about love and I talked about valuing the wrong things, that's one of the big ways that it shows up. If you are getting crazy nervous on a date, you're already, that's already a reflection of the fact that you've valued the wrong things because you're valuing this person's looks or their status or what you perceive them to be, but you can't, you're not valuing them in a relationship or in relation to you, which is defined by how much they give, how they connect with you, how they relate to you, how they see you, all of that stuff is completely, it is, you're a zero. - Yeah. - So how can you be nervous if you're valuing the right things? You can only be nervous if you're valuing the wrong things. If that to me is the key to eliminating early nerves in early dating, is that there is, I almost feel a little fatalistic about it, which is funny coming from someone who gives advice in this area for a living because, you know, I do believe that we can influence situations with what we do, but we do have to have a bit of a dose of fatalism, that the thing that didn't pan out wasn't the thing. The person who's still great in week eight is showing you the right things, but if they suddenly ghost you in week nine, then it doesn't mean they would have been great in week 16. - Yeah, yeah, yeah. - They're like, oh, but they were the one, and I just don't know what, I need closure. You have closure. That action was closure. What they showed you is they had eight good weeks in them. - Yeah. - That's interesting. Yeah, that's interesting. And it's the same as you'd say in sport. Like, if you, if you, I was just thinking about sport, while you were saying that, it's the idea of like, a player may have won good season in him or her. And then that player may have had 10 good seasons in him or her. And sometimes we have these players where we're like, "Oh, she's gonna be the next," or "He's gonna be the next," and then all of a sudden, they don't give you that season. And in sports, we get closure by just going, "Oh, they had potential, but they didn't make it." But you're right, in love and life, it's a lot hard to have that mentality of like, they gave me eight good weeks, but they didn't make it. - Well, and you sit there and you obsess over someone who just left you going.
You obsess over what they could have been (28:06)
You obsess over what they could have been. - Yeah. - That's what it is. - You know, this was so promising. They were everything that I was looking for. This could have been. And anytime you, someone breaks up with us. You know, the heartbreak is the loss of the life we thought we were gonna have with someone. This is, this is what it could have been. This is what it should have been. - Yeah. - My answer to that is, it would have been if it should have been and could have been. - Yeah. - Then it would have been. You're literally, you're grieving over something that was not, by definition, it wasn't meant to happen 'cause it didn't happen. - Yes, yeah, yeah. - It didn't happen. So this idea that it was supposed to, or it should have, is a fantasy, it's science fiction. - Yeah. But I feel like in relationships, we have this fantasy mind that's already written the script and the book and the trilogy before the second date is over. And so it's almost like relationship seems to be like the one area of our life where we write decades into the future and we can't help ourselves because we almost think that that, and it's almost like you're living, what you're saying is you're living off the fantasy, not even off the reality that's right in front of you. And so even when you're on a date with them, you're not even there because you're in your fantasy land of what you think it is. - And that's where in so many ways, everything that you are, you know, your expertise in mindfulness and everything you've learned there is so important in dating because in dating you have to be on the date you're on. Mindful dating is beyond the date you're on. Don't be on date two, but really you're not, you're on date 32. Your mind has to be on date two with your body. - Yes. - And when people don't do that, that's where they start constructing a fantasy of where this relationship is going. A fantasy of who this person is. They know 5% of someone and they've built the other 95% of extrapolation. - Yeah. - Oh, he was really sweet in that moment. You know, I be as good with kids. I be as this, I be as, you know, I be as an amazing family man. I be, you know, and we've all had the experience of meeting someone who is incredibly charming, fun to be around, you know, you went away from like as men, we sometimes go out and we meet another man and it's like, we've been a date on a date with that man. You come home and you go, he was so great. You know, I loved him to bits. He was like, and he really charmed you. And then six months later, that person has really lost their shine. 'Cause they're flaky. You realize they don't actually show up when you need them to. You realize that it's, they kind of, you know, it's that, in the talented Mr Ripley, there's that great line. - Oh, that's a great movie. - Great movie. There's a great line where Matt Damon is like, you know, he's become the new chosen best friend of Jude Lord. - Jude Lord, yeah. - And his name, Jude Lord's character's name's Dickie and Matt Damon is feeling suddenly shut out, like out of nowhere he feels shut out. When five minutes ago he was like, this guy's my best friend and he loves me. And he's so, and he says to Matt Damon's girlfriend at the time, he's expressing how he feels that, you know, or, no, he's not even expressing. She sees the look on his face that he's sad, that he no longer has this like friendship that feels real to him. And she says the thing about Dickie is when, when he puts his attention on you, it's like the sun is shining on you. And then the attention moves on and it's very cold. And, and that's the experience of a lot of those people. But when you're taking the 5% of the sun shining on you and you use it to build the 95% that you cannot possibly know. You can't know who this person is when your brother gets sick and you need to travel to the hospital to be with that person and you need support in that moment. You can't know how that person is when you're having an anxious moment and you need someone to show love and compassion towards you and this anxiety that you can't seem to control and what you really need is a loving teammate to be there with you and not to judge you. You can't know what this person is like in year three of a relationship when the, you know, you need to make a shift in your sex life because it feels like that part has become stayed but you need to work together to figure out. You don't know what that person is like in those stages. So, so thinking that you have all the answers because you've been on even 10 or 15 dates with this person and had a wonderful time is a, is a fallacy, a fantasy.
Don’t be upset when you lose a poet, the poetry is the relationship (32:59)
There's a great, the relationship itself is about every stage of it and the effort that's put in. And there's a, there's a story from Bukowski where he, he slept with a prostitute, every romantic story begins with, begins this way. He slept with a prostitute and she, he woke up to her having stolen his poetry and he was so upset, so mad. - That's terrible, yeah. - And he wrote about it and he wrote a piece that was all about how you could take anything, take my money, take the other stuff in the apartment, take it all, but please not my anything but my poetry and the whole piece finishes with the line and then God said crossing his legs, I see where I have created a great many poets but not so very much poetry. And the, the idea is that, you know, the person who has potential in a relationship is the poet. The poet, everyone's a poet. Not many people writing poetry. Writing is the more difficult part. A lot of people who are great on a date, very romantic, very charming, they're a poet on a date. The poetry is the relationship. And, and you shouldn't, you know, Bukowski was upset because his poetry was taken, the things he'd worked on. And that's how it should be in a relationship is, don't, don't get upset because you lost a poet. Poets are a dime a dozen. Poetry is rare. People who are willing to write the poetry of a relationship, people who are willing to stick it with you for a year, two years, five years, 10 years, that's really rare. And we need to start valuing the poetry far more than we value the poet. - Yeah, I love that. What a, what a beautiful analogy. Let's, let's talk a bit about that poetry because I feel like what's amazing is we convince us of more of the fiction when you are lost in after that person's looks, fame, prestige, whatever, whatever they have that you're attracted to. It's almost like then even if they do a million bad things, like you said about the guy playing the guitar or whatever it is, it's like, you look, oh, but he's so, or she's so whatever. But tell us a bit about what to look out for. So when people are out there and I know what I love about what you do is that, and I love this conversation by the way so far because it's, it's, it's philosophical and it's real, but you're great at getting practical too. And I see that in all the work you put out. What's some of the practical things that people can look out for? I know so many friends who are in early relationships or just started to date someone or finally met someone.
A moment where you genuinely are brave enough to let someone in and be seen (35:49)
What can they look for in those moments? Or is it looking for anything? I mean, maybe that's even the wrong place to start. - I think it's, so we have a duty early on to bring out best to the table in as much as we can. We're all gonna make mistakes. We're all gonna have anxious moments or jealous moments or moments where we let our insecurity get the better of us, moments where we let our anger get the better of us. Everyone's gonna have these moments, but we wanna try and put our best foot forward. But I always think that we learn a lot in the moments where you have your first fight or you reveal something about yourself and you see how they react to it. You know, do they react with compassion? Or is there immediate judgment? And I don't mean a moment where you kind of try and perform. I mean, a moment where you genuinely are brave enough to let someone in and be seen. Does this person, do they see you? Do they acknowledge you? And do they show compassion and curiosity about why you are that way? And what's happened in your life to get you there? Do they really, are they looking to figure you out and who you are as a wonderful, wonderful sign? 'Cause a lot of people are just in a relationship in their sleepwalking. Yeah, yeah. They're just, they're enjoying it. They're enjoying the fruits of the relationship, but you don't get the impression someone's really trying to get to know you. You don't feel seen by that person. The person who's actually asking questions of you, the person who's looking to understand the good and the bad in you, and who elevates the good and soothes the bad, that's something very beautiful to look out for. The person who can come back and say sorry, as of course, and I apply the same standard to both sides. Yeah, of course. But the person who can come back and say sorry, you know, again, we all, with one of my staff in my company, when I say, you know, when I give them a difficult piece of feedback, I don't expect them to smile in that moment. I don't expect them to like take, you know, and I would hope that they don't react in a really negative or toxic way, but I don't expect them to have an easy time with that. But if that person can go away over the next few hours or days and then come back and say, you know, I really thought about what you said and I'm gonna work on that, that's something to look for. 'Cause you can really like that person. If you're both that kind of person, you can work with that person. Yeah. There's someone you can genuinely have a relationship with because it's not a relationship that's based on perfection or never having an argument, but it is based on two people who are humble enough to genuinely own their mistakes or to own the areas where they wanna get better. I'm always looking at the ways people argue and whether they're trying to do damage in an argument or whether they're trying to rebuild in an argument.
When you come out of an argument bleeding every time (39:03)
And if you're with someone that, every time you come out of an argument, you feel like they lacerated you. And there's, you come out of an argument bleeding every time, you know, and you're like, why did they have to say that incredibly nasty thing? And it's one thing, if they come back 10, an hour later and say, or even a day later and say, I truly regret having said that to you and I will do better. But if they won't even acknowledge that that was a really toxic way to have an argument and that was a really nasty thing to say, then that's a problem. 'Cause this is a relationship that's not gonna soothe you. It's gonna create more and more wounds. So that I would say is an important thing. And two people genuinely at the core of it operating as a team. What do you need? And can I tell you, you know, you're working really hard right now. Can I understand what your goal is in doing this and seek to understand that and where that's coming from for you and why that's important? But can I also voice to you that I'm not feeling very loved right now and that I'm, you know, maybe it's just my insecurity or maybe that, you know, but I, or maybe I don't have some, enough, many things going on in my life right now as you do in yours, but I know one of the effects is it's creating some anxiety for me. And it's making me feel like you don't love me as much as I love you. You know, you want an environment where you can have that real conversation. And it, then to me, a relationship is no longer about right and wrong. It's about the conversation. Can the conversation be had? That to me is one of the greatest signs of a relationship you should hang on to. Is can the relationship be had? And can it be had in a beautiful and productive and loving way? Yeah. Because that's all, you know, David Brooks said marriage is a 50 year conversation. Mm hmm. Right? Is that conversation a, does it feel good? Yeah. Doesn't always feel comfortable, but does it feel like this is a conversation that is making me better? Yeah. Or is it a conversation that's always making me worse? Yeah, I love that. And I think it's, it's such a vicious cycle though sometimes because I find that you get into an argument, like you said, which I think the first argument is such a great, like it's such a great market put down as let's, let's reflect on this. I think that's such a great way of putting it that you said. And if you look at that, often what happens is the person reacts badly. It's natural, you react badly too. And then you're waiting for that person to make up and that person's waiting for you to make up. And then maybe you go ahead and put the first hand in, but then now they deal with the second bad and now you're waiting again. And I feel like we get lost in this like waiting game. And I kind of got to a point where I was just like, I want to make sure that I am leading this conversation. So a conversation with me and my wife always have is I'll always check in with her and be like, is this relationship going in the direction you want it to go in? Like, is this going in the direction? Is this relationship what you want it to be? And if it's not, what do you want it to be and what are you willing to do to get there? Because, and I'll always be like, well, this is not how I want the relationship to be. And this is what I want it to be. And I feel like that conversation for me is really healthy and I'm always happy, one thing that I've got to right now. And I think my wife has this in different parts of our relationship, I'm always happy to take the responsibility for the quality of the relationship. Because I'm in it in the same way as I'm with my company, the same way as I'm for this podcast, the same way as I'm for anything, it's like, it's easy to, it's easy to sit there and go, well, what are you bringing to the table? And I realized at one point where I was like, if I care about stuff, I've got to be okay with grabbing onto the reins. And the funny thing is I started to realize that, that actually there are plenty of times when my wife does that, she just does it in different areas that I don't notice. And so it can feel like I'm carrying the burden. But actually that's not true. I'm taking responsibility where I thrive. And actually she's taking responsibility where she thrives and I don't even notice that. And that's when I started to feel healthier rather than like, I was like, well, you show up, like what are you doing? And I remember when I was a monk, the teachers would always tell us that, you know, you may sit in a class with a non-charismatic teacher. So they were like, some of the monks are not gonna be the most charismatic, the most attentive, the most dynamic teachers of the texts and the spiritual scriptures. And they were like, but if you're a student, that's 10 out of 10, even if the speakers are one out of 10 in presentation, you're gonna get lots. But if you're a one out of 10 and the speakers 10 out of 10, then they're lifting you up. But by the way, if you're at a one out of 10 and they're at a one out of 10, that's all you're gonna get. And it's kind of like what your friends said about the bag of milk. You know, the idea of like taking your own responsibility for if you wanna be in a relationship. - I'd love to hear your thoughts on that. - Yeah, I'd love to hear. - That speaks again, you're so right, Jay, and it's truly beautiful that you have that in your relationship.
People aren’t comfortable in being an area they can be criticized (44:31)
And it's also brave 'cause talking, those conversations are not easy. And people can say things in those relationships, in those conversations that can scare us. They could say, well, I'm not happy 'cause I want it to go in this direction. - Yeah, I've heard that too, yeah. - Ooh, like, you know, or I didn't realize you were unhappy in that way or I didn't realize you felt like that. It takes a lot of bravery to have conversations like that. And I commend you for that. And I think that's one of the things a lot of people aren't willing to do is step bravely into an area where they could be criticized. But I think it is one of the most important aspects of a relationship is being able to do exactly that. So no, I think it's a stunning thing. - Well, it's uncomfortable, like you're saying. It's not, and I'm not sharing it. It's like, we've perfected it, and we've got it right. I'm just saying that that's what we've had to do in order to, like, you know, we're only at year five, year eight in our relationship, year five in marriage. But it's like, that's what we've just, I've had to find these, what you're saying, like the 50-year conversation and the idea you're saying of having these, like, I'm just, I've noticed that without these things, you could go years without changing anything. - But speaking of what you said with the idea of the monks, that, to me, goes back to the, you know, what I was saying about timing being important. I do believe when you go into a relationship with genuine purpose, and even when you go into dating with genuine purpose, you, you know, you go on a dating app 'cause a lot of people out there listening to this won't be in relationship. There'll be, right now, in the crapshoot of dating apps trying to figure out how to navigate, when we're intentional, we bring a different energy to the things we do. We bring a different energy to a person. And in a relation, in early dating, I think that when you're really intentional and when you really are like, I'm looking for a real connection here, you don't actually judge people as quickly. You don't dispose of people as quickly where you just go wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, you start actually looking for what could be right. You start, and I'm not saying ignoring abusive and toxic behavior, I'm just saying, those superficial things we just, you know, decide, no, they don't meet this checklist, they don't meet this one, whatever. We lose that because what we're looking for is deeper and we start genuinely seeking to like, we're on a date and we start going, let me really find out who this person is. Like, let me really see them and let me not be judgmental of them so quickly and look to understand them and the reward for that is that this person now actually feels seen by you. - Yeah, that's great advice. - And they now give you a different energy than they may have given on the last 10 dates. - Yeah. - You suddenly, they blossom on the date differently because of the energy in front of them. There's a Mitch Albin wrote a line about, you know, if the culture isn't serving you, then you have to be brave enough to create your own culture and then, in dating, for so many people, you know, I get all the complaints about dating these days.
The culture you create will have an impact in the people around you (47:32)
You know, it's superficial, it's no one, everyone's flaky, no one goes on real dates, no one's trying, no one's really committing, no one's a real relationship, it's like, okay, so what you're describing to me is what you perceive to be a culture that's not working for you. - Yeah. - But if that culture isn't serving you, then create your own culture that surrounds you. And your culture can be powerful, not for the world necessarily, 'cause for that, there needs to be a combined cultural shift. But in your micro life, in your micro problems and opportunities, the culture you create will have an impact on the people around you. - Yeah. - And the same way, you know, I said, if you go into a room at a party and you say, I hope this party's good, well now you're a victim to however this party is. You know, if everyone seems kind of closed off and mean and you know, this cliquey and it's like, oh God, then you go home and you say, oh my God, that party was so, you know, it was one of those horrible parties. But if you go in and you say, I'm gonna at the very least be responsible for a part of this party. - Yes, yeah. - I'm gonna go in and I'm gonna give the love and the energy and the compassion and the authenticity that I would love for people in this room to join me in giving. Some will, some won't, and by the way, that's also good 'cause it will help you find your crowd. - Yeah. - Right? - Yeah. - So you find your crowd by being the thing you wanna be, not by hoping that your crowd elicits it from you. - Completely. - You found your crowd online by going out and being an energy that you wanted to be first. And then that crowd noticed you, it's like a lighthouse. So all the ships start knowing where to come home because they see the lighthouse. That for me is, that's one of the most beautiful things about giving energy early on. I see dating, not just relationships, but I see people in dating these days. The game is who can try less, who can be cooler, who can be more indifferent. And that's honestly not the way to do it. That's certainly the way to attract someone of a lower frequency. - I love that, yeah. - Right, you can certainly attract someone who wants the game, who wants the, who's got the demons that make them chase someone who's not into them. - Yeah. - And there are plenty of people with those demons, but you don't wanna be in a relationship with a person like that. 'Cause for sure, a person like that, the moment you stop playing hard to get and you turn around to meet them, they're not gonna be interested in you anymore. 'Cause their demons will tell them, this person likes us now. They're not, this person is no longer called to us. They were only called to us as long as they didn't like us. So you can't ever-- - It's so messed up. - Yeah, but it's that, that Crouch O'Marks thing, I wouldn't wanna be a member of any club that would have me as a member. - Yeah, yeah. - That describes dating insecurity amongst people like that is I wanna, that person doesn't want me, they must be a catch. - Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, exactly. - And so what we have to do is give, when we give a little more energy in dating, and so you know what, this person who I've known for five minutes, maybe I'm not feeling much energy here, but I'm just gonna give some energy.
Discussing Emotional Investment And Heartbreak
Give an amount of energy you are willing to lose (50:53)
I'm gonna give an amount of energy I'm willing to lose. That's a key way of looking at it. What you don't do is you keep trying with someone who's not giving you equal energy back. - Yes, yes. - That then becomes masochistic. - Right. - But giving an amount of energy you're willing to lose. I always think about that in every interaction. - That's so true, yeah. - Given amount, you don't mind losing. - Yeah. - It's like going into the casino and playing like roulette. It's like, all right, I'm in Vegas. I'll give like a hundred bucks. - Yeah. - And then I'm not spending anything else here in these casinos. That's it. You know, for me it's normally like 10 bucks. - Yeah. - 'Cause I'm not a gambler, but you just decide, what am I happy to lose? And it's the same with energy. It's, you know, I'm dating right now. - I wanna find someone amazing, someone beautiful. I'm gonna give to everyone I interact with, an amount of energy I don't mind losing. And some people, I'm gonna bring out the people who now are willing to give it back. 'Cause all of a sudden they might be jolted out of their little coma that they've been in because they're disillusioned with dating and they feel like no one's trying. And so they went into their show, but now they see you with a different level of warmth and playfulness and just positivity. And they go, huh, who is this? This makes me feel good. And they come out a little bit and all of a sudden you see who they are. You wake them up a little bit. And then there's a bunch of people you won't. And that's okay 'cause you were willing to lose that much energy. But what people do instead, they do a far more dangerous thing of being afraid of the rejection from people that they approach or talk to in the first five minutes. God forbid I get rejected in the first five minutes. But then they'll meet someone where they have a bit of connection and chemistry, but who isn't trying, who isn't giving them equal energy. And they'll keep pouring energy into that person month after month after month when they're not getting the same in return. And they think that's safer than going out there and getting rejected by a new person. But actually this is the dangerous one. They're being rejected in five minutes by someone who doesn't even know you, who on an app, how much can someone really reject you anyway? And we all know our experience. We've all chosen people in life who on an app we might have swiped right past. - Absolutely. - So we know from our own personal experience that if we get rejected on an app, it doesn't even mean that person wouldn't like us in real life. - Totally. - Yeah. - But we're so afraid of that rejection. That's mortal fear is that rejection. And yet continuing to waste months or years on someone who's giving us unequal energy is something people happily do. They spend that time like it's nothing. Because that's the really dangerous one. - Because it feels safe. Because it feels like there's something at least. There's some connection, there's some comfort. Well, there's a couple of things. Firstly, it's comfortable. It's what I know. Doesn't mean I'm happiness and comfort of very different things. It's not happy. I'm not happy. I'm not getting my needs met, but it's comfortable. So I'll stay in it for that reason. It's the fear of I'll never find anyone again, which is a fallacy because you found this person. You did it already. - Yeah, yeah. - And by the way, this person's not so unique that they're the only person in the world that's gonna find you attractive. - Yeah, right. - Like they're attracted to you 'cause you're attractive. - Yeah. But that's the crazy thing, right? We have this massive paradox between, there's now unlimited choice more than ever. You feel like you have way more choice than you had before. But then we have limitless fear to go with that that we may not find anyone ever again. Like it's like weird thing, right? Like it's the idea of like, I don't, so I've never had to online day or app day. I became a monk when I was 21 and then my wife's with the early person I've been with since I left. So I, the last day-- - But you're really impressive age to become a monk, by the way. - Yeah, right. - I feel like that's uniquely impressive is becoming a monk at 21. - Well, I started at 14, so I had seven years of-- - Fair enough. - Of being a single man-- - Of runway together. - Yeah, I'm going to get there. - Becoming a monk at 80? - Yeah, yeah, yeah. - Well, I'll take that. - Yeah, no, I think I did it because of having, having to figure out some of this stuff. But, but the last time I went on a date was, apart from my wife was about what, like 12, 13 years ago. So I never had to date from an app. The closest thing we had was high-fived. Do you remember high-fived? - No. - High-fived was like an early Facebook where it showed you 200 to 300 friends in your network. - Got it. - And it was Facebook, but it was, most people, most guys in their teens used it for dating. But, the idea of, you feel there's so much choice now.
Experiencing the endless ocean of disappointment (55:34)
Like you just, like you said, you're just swiping away, you're looking at profiles, everything. But, at the same time, you feel like you'll never find someone again. Where's, what's happening there? What are you seeing there when you're speaking to people? - I think there's a combination of things. It's, people aren't experiencing, for a lot of people, they're not experiencing what they see as an endless ocean of choice. What they're experiencing is an endless ocean of disappointment. - Wow. - Of constantly talking to people with it not going anywhere. - Wow. - Being ghosted. Talking to someone and they, that person never actually takes them up on going on a date. So, it's like, we're living a computer game version of dating, but I'm not actually meeting up in real life. Or, you know, meeting someone, it seems to be going well for a few dates, and all of a sudden, they disappear, and, you know, they're, or they're not interested anymore, it fizzles out. And so, it's, it's a lot of disappointment, but the ironic thing about that is that, on the flip side, people experience that choice in a negative way. So, what they feel is, the person I could be going, I'm going on a date with having this choice. - Wow. - And that brings out all of my insecurity, because I feel like I'm never, how can I possibly compete with what Boburnum says is, everything all the time. - Yeah. - I can't compete with that. I can't compete with you having access to everyone in a 10 mile radius, or more if you choose to have more. That's something, how do I possibly live up to that? And that to me is at the root of so many people's lack of confidence, even their lack of authenticity when they go on a date, because they're trying to be, they stop trying to connect, and they start trying to be something they think, the other person wants them to be. And now it's a departure from themselves. Now, to me, the lesson here is the same as, you know, the one of the things I really enjoy about working with people in their love lives, is that it's so transferable and universal to other domains. So if you look at this problem of, we're afraid, you know, we can't live up to the choice that somebody else has, that's actually true in business too. It's true in content creation, right? Like I've had it in the last couple of years, I've had moments where I look at just how many creators they now are, and just how much video content is pumped, online every day, that I feel like I've overeat and I'm wanna be sick. And I'm like, it can get to a point where even though, because in one sense, being good at something creates confidence, right? If you feel like you're a good partner and you're attractive and you have good qualities and so on, then you feel like a version of competence. And the same is true in content creation. I've been doing what I do for 15 years. I feel very competent when it comes to speaking into a microphone, going on TV, going on stage, making videos. And yet there's still moments where I've had just this little feeling of like, do I need, like does the world need another voice? - Yeah. - Everyone is speaking all the time. And I mean, this is a side note rant, but like, you know, it's so funny. I was watching, there was like some thumbnails for a major podcast and this is no slant on it because I understand what happens with this, but it was so funny because I was like, there was one thumbnail that was like, you know, be kind to yourself. And then the next one was, achieve through suffering. There's like another one that's like, push past your limits and ignore the realistic. And there's another one that's like, motivation is BS. And it was all the same podcast. But it's like every next thumbnail is like a piece of wisdom that contradicts in some way the last piece. - Right. - But that I think is just, I think we're all force feeding ourselves content at the moment, or like this, just untenable. But when you're a creator in an environment like that, you can get to a point where you're like, does the world need me? - Yeah. - Yeah. - Like if I just stop talking, does it matter? Everyone else is saying it anyway, in a thousand different ways. And what I tell myself is, there is someone that uniquely vibes with my personality and the way I deliver the message.
There is someone that uniquely vibes with your personality (01:00:00)
It's not about me worrying, how do I grab that person's audience? Or how can I appeal to everybody? It's just about me saying, you know what, William Zinser, there's a wonderful book for life and writing. Someone once said to me, every book I'm writing is a book on life. But there's a, William Zinser wrote one of the seminal books on writing, which I forget, I think it's on how to, great writing or something. If you look up William Zinser, people will find it. But he says, you know, when you go to, he said, you may be a aspiring travel writer, who when you think about going to Tokyo to write about Tokyo, you think that thousands of travel writers have been to Tokyo and written about Tokyo. What do I possibly have to add? And he says, but the world hasn't heard what your lens on Tokyo is. The world hasn't heard your take on Tokyo. And that might contain some idea or way of looking at things that other people haven't actually done, or that you may say the same thing, but you may say it fresh. - Yeah. - And so I tell myself that when I'm creating content, that it's not about appealing to everyone. It really is about saying, I, my take on this is interesting for its own sake. To the people that vibe with me. The same is true in dating. - I see that. You, there is a specific audience for you, and it doesn't have to be 99.999% of people. - Yeah. - If you're looking for a serious relationship, it just has to be one. - Yeah. - Those are amazing odds. - That's a great analogy. I love that. That, it resonates your so right on both levels. And your spot on it's weird that in dating too, we wanna be attractive to everyone. We want everyone to feel just as a content creator. You want everyone to feel a sound way about you. And so I think that's such a great way of looking at it. And yeah, I love the idea, the writer you mentioned around the voice on Tokyo. Yeah, I always feel that I'm like, we need more faces and more voices. And because there was just so many people that you can connect to, that I can't connect to, and vice versa with everyone else. And I see that all the time that, and whatever field you're in too, right? Like I always say, like there's enough space for the best athletes, the best actors. Like there's so many actors, there's so many actresses, but there's always a new person that kind of makes it in and wins the upcoming actor award. - That's really true. - Actress award because you kind of wanna discover, and you also want the idea of discovery. And I think people almost make it, like I think we've always made it about like, oh, who's your top three, who's your top five? And the people that actually are watching, and listen, they don't see it in a hierarchy. They just are like, oh, I listen to this group of people. That's usually how people think about it, I feel. Like even if someone asked me, like, who are your favorite authors? I don't have a category like number one author. There's a group of authors that I love reading from. And I feel like that's how people, and in relationships obviously, like you're saying, it's a much smaller pool, but you having that intention is gonna be much more clear. But tell me about your take on changing people.
You can’t change a person when they don’t want to (01:03:35)
I wonder how much you get people saying, I'm with someone, I met someone, they have potential, I think I can change them. - There's a quote from, I think it's Jacob, M brought, where he says, consider how hard it is to change yourself, and you'll understand how foolish it is to think you can change somebody else. And that, people should really let that sink in. Because, in the beginning of January, 60, 70, 80% of the world decides they wanna get fit and healthy. How, what percentage of those people get fit and healthy? Those are people who want to change. They didn't make that resolution for nothing. They made it because they want that. It's not someone saying to them, you should really lose weight, and them going, I'm fine. That's someone saying to themselves, I should really lose weight. And they still can't do it. Now, consider being in a relationship with someone who's not even admitting that they need to change, and thinking that they're going to change. It's hard. It would be on your heart, of behalf, and I'm not saying it would be wrong to trust someone when they say this, but it's still speculative. If you are in a relationship, and you say, Matt, I'm gonna change. That's still speculative for me. You might, it might be too hard. But it might be worth me staying if we have a lot of love between us, and you're saying, I'm gonna change, because I say, you know what? That's, if you're really committed to this, then game on, let's do this. But in order for that to happen, you have to first acknowledge that there's something to be changed, and then show desire to change it, and frankly, to have any real credibility, show a plan for changing it. - Yeah. - When two people are in a relationship, or two people break up, and a woman comes to me and says, "Two weeks later, he came back, "and he said he'll never, "he wants me back and whatever, "and he's not gonna hurt me again." I always say, an important question to ask is, why would it be different this time? Not from an emotion, not from a charged platform. - Yeah, yeah. - A real curiosity. I get that you're telling me-- - Yeah, how's that person even thought about that part? - Right, like two weeks later, which is a suspect time anyway, right? Because this is like, you're very much in the panic stage of I'll say anything to get you back right now. That's not considered, but fine, this is where we're at, two weeks out from our breakup, you're telling me you want me back and you'll never hurt me again, I get you want me back. But what is it that's different this time? That's what I need to understand, to feel safe, to go down this road with you again. And so I think people can and do change, otherwise you and me would be out of a job. But change, if you are not the author of your own change, then the idea that your partner is somehow gonna will you to change. You know, it's like telling your partner, I want you to do therapy. - Yeah. - And then going, okay, I'll go. - And that's the reason most people do go. Right, I find at least from people that I speak to or work with, like you hear that so often that the number one reason people do go to therapy is because their partner kind of forced them into it and they kind of agreed to it. - And that's a problem because you're hoping that they will see the value in it once they get there and they buy it. - Yeah, someone needs to have some skin in the game. - Yeah. - And so I just think that, here's what I will say, because there are so many people in relationships or in situationships if you wanna call them that, that are convincing themselves, they're conning themselves that somebody else is one day gonna be different. And at that point you have to say to yourself, on what basis have you decided this? What is it that this idea that they are, that some grand change is imminent? What is that based on? Is it based on them having said to you, hey, I know that in these last few months or years or whatever, this has been a big problem in this relationship and I know that's because of me. And this is something I am committed to changing. - Yeah. - Have they said that? 'Cause if they haven't, I have to ask, where is the logic here, underpinning your argument that they're one day gonna change? Oh, this isn't about them that they're gonna change or that they've even expressed a desire or a willingness or a commitment to change. This is about your demons calling the shots. - Yeah. - This is about your fear of losing someone. 'Cause maybe they don't wanna change. But what's really happening is you don't wanna lose someone. You don't wanna be on your own again. You don't wanna take the risk that there's something else out there where you can get your needs met on a higher level. And then it becomes about exploring yourself and saying, well, this person's been this way for years and I've complained about it for years. So is this still about them? Can I really keep saying this is about them? - That's so powerful, man. That really hit a chord.
You’ve never been heartbroken, have you? (01:09:43)
And I hope that everyone is listening and watching, that drops and syncs in for them as well because what you just said there, I think, that's the dilemma that most people are in. Do I stay or do I go? And you've just answered like, that's how you know. It's clear. I sometimes look at videos of myself from years ago at like Criinge. 'Cause I'm like, you know, it's not, what I'm saying might be factually right. - Yeah, yeah, yeah. - But the way I'm saying it, I was once-- - It's not looking at old hairstyles, it's the same thing. It's like looking at old fashioned sense, old-fashioned-- - Oh, I thought that looked good. - Yeah, yeah. - I was in Beverly Hills when I first got to LA. I was about 25 and I was making a video in front of the Beverly Hills sign. I was like, I'm gonna get the Beverly Hills sign in the background and it was a video about getting over heartbreak. - Great. - And I think it was like the three tips for getting over heartbreak, right? Which by the way, as soon as you say, three tips for getting over heartbreak, you already don't understand. Because anyone who's deep in heartbreak is not coming to you going, what are your tips? They're going, save me from this existential-- - Crazy, yeah. - Doom. I am in where life doesn't feel worth living right now. You know? And I was making this video and at the end of the video, a guy came over, it was like a three, four minute video 'cause of course you can sum up how to get over deep, deep loss in three minutes. He came over and he said to me, you've never been heartbroken, have you? - Someone who's just watching, just to listen to the whole, I didn't know he was listening, but he was like in his shot the whole time and he was like, you've never been heartbroken, have you? Now, 25 year old know it or me. I was like, in my head, 'cause out loud, I went, - No, I have and yeah, I have. Yeah, and I like sort of shuffled on. In my head, I went, who do you think you are? Of course, I've like, what does this guy know? Like, oh, you know so much more than me or what it, he was right. I had never been truly, I'd had time, I'd had things that like hurt me. - Yeah, sure. - I'd never been like crushed. - Yeah. - And having had that experience in my life now, the video I make is very different. How I talk about that is extremely different. - Yeah. - And the reason I say that is because I am aware that these things we're talking about here, it's very easy from a distance to say to people, this person hasn't changed in a long time. What makes you think they're gonna change now and why you're still there? And the why you're still there is because this stuff is so hard, change is so hard. Leaving a situation. - So hard. It's changing anything is hard. Like this is one of the things that I sort of, one of my gripes I suppose sometimes with some of the self-development rhetoric is that it makes things sound so much easier than they are. And it sort of, it trivializes what are really difficult things. You know, most people, if they could just turn off their depression or their anxiety, if there was just a switch where they could go, they would do it. - Yeah. - And it's a terrible thing to feel. So the fact that they are feeling it must mean it's very difficult for them to not feel that. - Yeah. - And the same is true of a relationship.
Staying in unhappy for a long time makes it difficult to entertain the the idea of leaving (01:13:35)
If someone has stayed in an unhappy situation for a long time, that must mean it is incredibly difficult for them internally to make peace with the idea of leaving. And what's happening of course is in this moment where it's evident to all of their friends and family that they should leave and that they should never look back, their abandonment issue that's been around their whole life is screaming at them. - Yeah. - Screaming, using any tactic it can to get them to stay. And when they were in the relationship, the tactic it used maybe was to go into people, please, a mode and even though this person is not treating me right, I'm gonna do anything I can to make them happy. Make every compromise, make every sacrifice, bend over backwards, subjugate my own needs to try and serve you all in order so that I can keep you. - Yeah. - And then at a point where you get so unhappy and you say, oh my God, this person's terrible. I've had to lose myself in this relationship to make them happy. I'm gonna leave just at the point of leaving just as your friends are like, thank the Lord. They did it. - Yeah. - They left. You go home that night and that abandonment demon realizes a different tactic has to be played. So it says, maybe they weren't so bad. Maybe like we're asking for too much. Maybe like, you know, they did have really great qualities didn't they? I mean, they were loyal and they're a lovely person a lot of the time and they're this and they're that and that voice starts using a different tactic with you because the only thing that voice wants is, don't be abandoned. - Yeah. - And you'll do anything in its power to reach that goal. It will ruin your life to achieve that goal 'cause it only has one goal. And the goal is not make you happy. The goal is make sure you're not abandoned. - Yeah. - And so this stuff is so difficult and it's why people should, in those moments if anyone is listening to this and if you're listening to this and you're in an unhappy situation, I get it, I get how hard it is and taking the time to really say one of the things that can help is to say this demon would come out with another person too. So it's not really about this person. To that extent, at least, I can depersonalize this and go, it's not really about losing this person. It's just about losing a person. And I can carry this demon with me to the next one and the next one and the next one. So, but I think people should be compassionate to themselves but if they're struggling to end something difficult, but extend that compassion to your future self. - Yeah. - Because extending, truly extending your compassion to your future self is doing something that gives him or her a shot at a happy and a peaceful life. And if you know that all the evidence has told you, it does not reside here, then compassion towards your future self is leaving, even if your presence self, it's deeply painful. - That's so powerful, man. That's amazing. I'm so glad that you brought it to that and your reference to just how people could switch it off. That, I remember when I read that statistic the first time that we have 60 to 80,000 thoughts per day, but 80% of them are repeated. And that was the one that really hit me. And I was like, yeah, that's what's happening. Like if someone's saying that to themselves, what you just said about abandonment, the idea of if someone keeps repeating to themselves without even knowing subconsciously, don't be abandoned. Don't be abandoned. Don't be abandoned. Don't be abandoned. And that's just repeating over and over again. When you hear the advice of like, oh yeah, you should be able to leave or walk away. Of course, it's hard because that's one thought amongst 60,000 thoughts, whatever it is. And so it's a complete rewiring that needs to take place. And it's not just about cutting the wire, right? Like we're so, we're just like, oh yeah, I'm just gonna cut that thought out. And it doesn't work like that. It's completely shifting it around. And so I love what you just said that, you know, I'm so glad that you took this conversation there because without that, actually it's not even possible to rewire because you were just trying to cut a wire that can't be cut. It's not possible to cut it. - And even if you cut it in the form of ending this relationship, the issue's still there. And you're lapped onto the first person you find on the way out. - Exactly, exactly. Matthew, we've talked about so many things today. I wanna ask you, is there anything that I haven't asked you to share before we dive into the final five? Is there something that's in your heart, in your mind that's intuitively there for you that you feel like you need to share with everyone today before we dive into the final five?
The 30-Day Confidence Challenge
The 30-Day Confidence Challenge (01:18:40)
- I suppose, if I may, there's a... - Yeah, perfect. - I've been working on something recently that, I know these subjects can, as you said, seem very abstract. Even when you talk about, when we talk about confidence, it's a very hard thing to latch onto and figure out, "Okay, I wanna be more confident. I wanna be confident enough to leave." Or, "I'm single, but I wanna be confident enough to approach that person." What's it? - Yeah. - It's a very hard thing to grab onto. What does it mean to be more confident? How do I actually do it? I put together something that, I said, "If in 30 days I wanted to, if I had a gun to my head and it was, you have to improve someone's confidence in 30 days, what would you do?" I said, "Well, maybe I'd create five challenges that were specifically engineered around the psychology of confidence." And my theory with this is, if you can give yourself a genuine, not like, you know, completely transformed, everything about your confidence in 30 days, 'cause we all know that's just BS. No one's, the world is full of these kind of hyperbolic promises, but if people can, I believe that when you can create like a crack in the doorway, and that shows you what's possible, that momentum leads to something bigger and bigger and bigger. I don't think someone starts by saying, "I know I can be a millionaire." I think someone starts by saying, "I made two grand this month. I bet I could make two and a half next month." And then making two and a half and go, "I think I see a way to fall." You know, that to me is how belief is built. It's incremental. And so I said, "If I can get people a 30-day, significant incremental shift in their confidence, then whatever goals they have this year, that will give them the momentum to charge into those goals differently." So I put together a place where I've got, there's an initial kickoff call that I'm doing with everybody, where I'm going to take them through those five challenges. We're going to go through them together as a blueprint for 30 days, and then the timer of the 30 days is going to start. And everyone's goal as a community is to do those five challenges over those 30 days. - That's awesome. - Literally engineered them based on the psychology of what I've learned about confidence over 15 years. If I may, I would say-- - I'd love that. Where can people sign up here? - Yeah, if you go to mhchallenge.com, that's my initials, mhchallenge.com. There's a place where people can sign up and they can join that challenge. But we already ran it once, and the results have been really beautiful because everyone's writing in. - Yeah, yeah, yeah. - So I just kicked off this challenge. - Do it together, yeah. - I just did this, I just did this. So it's been a very unifying thing for people, and we're about to, we're running it again now, so people can come and join at mhchallenge.com. - I love it. Everyone who's listening and watching, make sure you do sign up at mhchallenge.com. I don't want you to miss out on that. That sounds awesome, and it's so much more fun doing it with other people and taking it through these five challenges. - And we know how life changes buy, buy those practical things. - Thousand percent. - Thousand percent. I've never changed without being, I've always said to have three things, coaching, consistency, and community. Those are the three things. If you wanna change any area of your life, if you don't have coaching, you don't have consistency, and you don't have community, you're not gonna change it. And so that's exactly what this is. The mhchallenge.com is the place to sign up, everyone. And Matthew, I've got the final five for you, so these have to be answered in one word, or one sentence maximum. A sentence, I don't know what the official definition is, but I make it seven to 10 words. - So one word or one sentence? - One word or one sentence for each of these. Okay, so Matthew, Ashley, these are your final five. The first question is, what is the worst relationship advice you've ever heard or received? Find someone who loves you more than you love them. - Oh yeah, okay, great, good answer. All right, question number two, what's the best relationship advice you've ever heard, received or given? - Make a list of the things that are truly important for you to find in a partner, and then be that list. - Love that, great advice. All right, question number three. One word to one sentence again, define love for you. - Generous interpretation of other people's behavior. That's a great definition, I was not expecting that, that's awesome, that is a great definition. All right, question number four, what is, how would you describe your current purpose in life? - To make people feel less alone in their suffering. - That's beautiful, I love them, and that's really special. All right, question number five, if you could create one law in the world that everyone had to follow, what would it be? - I don't think I can beat the golden rule. The confusion, due to other people or treat other people how you would wanna be treated. I don't think I can beat these issues on that. - I love it, I love it, Matthew, us here, everyone. Please, please, please, go follow Matthew on all social media platforms, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook. Go and check out the MHChallenge.com, don't forget that you're getting five challenges in confidence with Matthew for that as well. So make sure you go and check out MHChallenge.com. And please tag me on me and Matthew on Instagram, on Twitter, on any platform that you use, with your biggest takeaways from this episode. We wanna see them, you know that I love sharing those insights and leave a review as well with your big takeaway from Matthew's episode. Matthew, thank you so much for doing this. I hope this is the first many that we get to do this for. - I do too. - And can I say it's been an unbelievable pleasure to do this and you're incredible at what you do and the way you bring yourself, even to an interview like this is people don't realize the level of pro in the way you interview, the way you, listen the way you like I sat here learning about listening from watching you listen. And that is exactly what we talked about in a relationship, right? You see something in somebody else that's, that they're doing really well and you go, wow, I wanna be as good a listener as Jay is right now. And to watch you, you know, we have mutual friends, but to watch what you have done over the last few years is a truly extraordinary thing to behold. I know what kind of resourcefulness and initiative and pro-activeness it must have taken for you to build this thing that you've built, which is just extraordinary. And, you know, I don't, I'm sure you hear it many, many times a day, but it is, you know, from one creator to another, I look at it and it is something very special, what you've done. So congratulations. - Well, thank you, man. I appreciate it. It's very kind. It really means a lot to me and I've thought how genuine that was. And, well, the reason why I was listening so well is because you were speaking so well. This is easy to listen to. I was just sitting there going, this is great. Like, I'm like, this people gonna love this. This is gonna make sense. And so it was easy to listen to you. And I think that's part of a relationship. You wanna sit down with someone that makes it easy. - You enjoy the conversation with. - Yeah, you enjoy the conversation that you're weird. So no, and the feelings meet you, man. Like, I remember, you know, I've been watching you for years and years and years and to see what you've created and the evolution of your work. And just also just what I really appreciate is the dedication to what you do and who you help and how you help them. I think it's so, you know, I think we live in a world where it's so easy to like, you know, now I'm a crypto influencer. And now I'm a, you know, an NFT influence or whatever it is. And it's like to dedicate your life to something that is big enough to be dedicated to, but to just see you so focused. And even in today's conversation, I can see that, you know, it's like, you can tell when someone's really well read in an area and has really thought about it from like pop culture to history to, you know, that, I love that. I love meeting someone who's immersed in their space and you demonstrate that beautifully. - Thank you, I'll remember that. - So thank you for that. - Thank you. - Yeah, thank you for dedicating your life to, and especially, you know, helping people suffer less in their relationships, which can be such a great source of suffering. - So, thank you, man. - Appreciate you, man. - If you want even more videos just like this one, make sure you subscribe and click on the boxes over here. I'm also excited to let you know that you can now get my book, Think Like A Monk, from ThinkLikeAMonkBook.com. Check below in the description to make sure you order today.