April 8, 2021

a mystery guest + Mike Miner on playing w/ Kevin Huerter, polite persistence & wacky business ideas.

On today's episode, the woman behind the brilliant "Cereal with a Stoic" Instagram account (@cerealwithastoic) joins us to talk about why she posts videos talking about Stoicism while eating cereal, and how this ancient philosophy helps her navigate work and relationships. Then, old friend Mikey Miner joins to discuss his college soccer career, recovering from an ACL tear, the "Manhattan of upstate New York" and much more (17:45).

To watch our full conversation with the mystery guest, check out our new video.

Today's quote: "Never let the fear of striking out stop you from playing the game." - Babe Ruth

Today's cause(s): Sports Are For Everyone, a Clifton Park, NY-based group that provides opportunities for disabled children to engage and compete in recreational sports such as golf, fishing, soccer, basketball, and baseball.

SAFE is often in need of office supplies like copy paper and storage space. If you are able to help, visit sportsareforeveryone.org or send your inquiries to safe@sportsareforeveryone.org.

Unified Sports is an inclusive sports program that unites Special Olympics athletes (individuals with intellectual disabilities) and partners (individuals without intellectual disabilities) as teammates for training and competition. You can donate here as part of the show's all-natural initiative.

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peace and love.


Okay. So the internet is an interesting place. There's a lot of bad people out there, but mostly good people. There's a lot of creative people, a lot of entertaining, inspiring people. And one of those people is the person behind this account that had followed me on Instagram, called cereal with a stoic.

Now, if you've been listening to my show past couple of months, I've talked about stoicism to a couple of people that I've had. On the show. And it's basically for those of you that don't know, it's just, it's this ancient philosophy that is designed to help you live a better life. It kind of gives you a toolkit to try to.

Put you on the path toward tranquility and finding meaning in life. And so this account's cereal with the stoic was sharing all of these great quotes from great stoic thinkers, Marcus Aurelius, Seneca, hepatitis, et cetera, et cetera. And this girl was doing these, these videos about stoicism as well, where she.

Sits with a bowl of cereal and just eats her cereal talking about stoicism. So now this, this guest is joining me, the person behind the cereal with the stoic account. I have no idea what your name is. I'd never met you before, but I love finding other young people to talk about stoicism with. So thank you for joining me.

How did you come up with the idea for this account? Hey Troy. So yeah, my name is Gabrielle. Um, I launched the account. This year in December or so, I guess last year, uh, 20, 20 December. Um, I wanted to start a stoicism account, but I pretty much figured out that like most people that are listening to podcasts or audio books or habit stacking, they're doing it in the morning when they're driving to work or they're doing their makeup or.

Um, whatever. So I was going to maybe have it like stoicism with eggs or, you know, some kind of breakfast. Um, I didn't want to roll out the beacons, you know, you need to be always, um, as an audience. So I was like, okay, well maybe cereal, you know, it's something that everyone can kind of, I think, recognize with it brings up your childhood a little bit, and I just really liked that morning thoughts kind of vibe, um, where like it's setting up your day.

I like to start my day with stoicism, it kind of just sets my mood. Right. So, um, yeah, that's kind of where it originated. How did you first come across stoicism? Um, so it was actually an ex-boyfriend who introduced it to me. Um, but I didn't get super into it until after that relationship ended. Um, yeah, he kinda just showed me and I think he bought one of those medallions, the coins, uh, and talked about carrying it around in his pocket.

And then it's this constant reminder. You feel the weight of it? So I was like, okay, that's cool. Um, and then I think like, When every person goes through a breakup, I think they're very raw and very vulnerable. And at the time I kind of needed a reset. I needed something to kind of turn to for strength every day.

Um, instead of kind of like whining to my friends or, you know, just being self-destructive drinking or going out partying, like whatever, have you, when you're going through something hard. So, um, I think, uh, for me, I, you know, I bought all the ride holiday books right in a row, read them back to back. And then that's kinda how it started.

I just have become really obsessed with it ever since and continued us studying it since then. So it's about a couple of years ago now. Wow. Okay. So Ryan holiday is kind of one of the modern stoic thinkers. He's the one who's modernized a lot of the ancient texts. He's written a lot of books out there. I just got done reading stillness is the key.

I still have a couple more to read on, uh, from Ryan holiday. Now, how do you try to apply stoicism in your everyday life? Because that is ultimately kind of what the philosophy is about. You know, everyone, the Stoics Ryan holiday talks about kind of dependent ink philosophers about how you kind of just study and read philosophy.

There's a lot of other ancient schools that, that just kind of left it to reading, but stoicism is kind of, you read about it, you learn about it, but then you actually apply it to your everyday life and you try to embody the stoic principles. So I'm curious, how do you try to embody it? Yeah, I think, uh, there's so many ways you can kind of apply it to your life.

Um, I think self-awareness and self check-ins are a huge way that you can, um, every single day kind of always maintain that level of okay. What is toxic about me. Like that's kind of what my account is about is transforming your toxic traits into triumphs, into, um, a better self. So, um, I'll journal in the morning.

A lot of people do it at night. I always forget at night, so I do it in the morning. Um, the daily stoic journal is great. Ryan holiday, you know, sold that as long as I have that and they, they give you prompts. I kind of find it hard to journal without a prompt. So I love the prompt ones. And, um, I think too with like friendships, I try not to be judgmental.

I try to actually listen when my friends are talking and not. Make it about me or, um, you know, think about my flaws and always kind of be very self-deprecating, but without having low self esteem be self-deprecating and just understanding we're all human, we're all going through so many of the same struggles and that compassion and that constant practice, I think really helps me at least, um, apply stoicism to my relationships and even at work too, staying out of toxic shit at work.

Staying out of, um, comments and. I guess just kind of trying to undermine different people or your boss, whatever. I just, I keep my mouth shut. I stay out of all of that and it's bettered my life. So yeah. Yeah. I love everything you just said. It's really helped me. I discovered stoicism during the pandemic, kind of like you, when, when you had a breakup, you just kind of need, need a reset.

Obviously a lot of stuff was going on mentally during this whole time. So I just kind of needed something to put my energy in something to believe in something, to get myself back on track. So I. Thought I had, you know, kind of veered off, off track and didn't quite likewise becoming. So stoicism kind of helped me lead, define what it meant for me to, to be a good person.

And so, um, the thing about it though, is that. You know, you never fully get there, right? Like with stoicism, it's a lifelong process. You may never live up to the, you know, Marcus Aurelius is the ideal stoic keto is an ideal stoic, these perfect people that just. All of their quotes that are like, how can you, how can you act that way in that situation, someone wrongs you, you naturally want to get back at them.

You want to, you know, get some sort of revenge on them. And they were absolutely perfect at it, but, you know, I just find it so difficult because so many of the stoic reactions are counterintuitive to what we actually want to do. So it is a lifelong learning and trial and error process of trying to become the best stoic that you can.

Yeah, absolutely. I think, I think so much of it is overcoming the emotional side of how you're feeling and just checking in with a logic. Um, and so like, that was what it was like for me, I feel like I was just getting, um, you know, your ego is a big part of it too. If you feel hurt or rejected or you feel like people are criticizing you or looking at you, um, that's all your ego.

So I feel so much of our problems as a society and as individuals just stems from. Our ability to our inability, to detach from the ego. It's Buddhism talks about it a lot too as well, where it's like, Because we can't attach. We're so emotional about things that really shouldn't be emotional. We get, um, I guess, offended by them or defensive and it causes fights and issues.

And, uh, you know, especially at work, especially in family, um, you know, big blow outs and things like that. Um, so I think that's what I love about it the most is that like it. It learned, it taught me, I guess, how to control which side of my reaction that I wanted to pull the lever on which side should stay silent, which side I should take action on.

Um, so that's definitely my favorite part of it. Yeah, maybe the biggest overall principle in stoicism is just focusing on what you can control and just letting go of everything else. You cannot control how other people treat you. You cannot control the things that happen in government and in politics and everything else that is happening in the world.

It is literally just taking the time to evaluate yourself every day. What am I doing? How am I making the world a better place? How am I trying to, to become the best person that I can be? That's what I love about stoicism now on your page, on your IgE page, against Syria, with a stoic, you share all these quotes.

And so, um, I just want to talk about one quote from here that, that kind of stuck out to me. And so I want to get your reaction to it. And so the quote is from Robert Green and Robert Green, I believe, uh, you know, has collaborated closely with, with Ryan holiday. I believe he's a writer. Um, the quote is the ultimate power in life.

Just to be completely self-reliant completely yourself. What's w what does that mean to you? Do you think? Yeah, so, like you just said, I think it's disconnecting from the opinions of others and what you can't control. Um, and I think so much of that is really empowering. Like I used to be a victim mentality kind of shit, where I would, I would kind of get off on.

Something bad happening to me and the attention I would get from it, which I feel like is very common. I think we don't like to admit it, but I think we do it a lot, especially when we're younger, we kind of grow out of it. But, um, you know, that's really fucked up when I got older. I'm like, why do I do that?

And why. Not only that, but why do I feel like I don't have a place in, in the choices of my life and the actions in my life? Like if I feel like someone mistreated me, okay, that's my fault. Why did I let them mistreat me? Why did I not set those boundaries? Instead of just being like reactive, you can flip it and turn more proactive lights.

Instead of bringing a crap person in my life, friend, whatever, and letting them let me down and then crying about it. I could just empower myself and choose great people, better people. And then I don't even have that happen to me later that, Oh, you know, a snowball effect is that you get the self respect, you get the self-love.

And so much of stoicism is self-love it's dignity, just, you know, having standards. And I think that that. Like it's a trickle effect because everything else in your life kind of rises up and levels up because you're now not allowing the same things you used to allow. Yeah. And you just spoke to it. It's also a lot of accountability.

It's, you know, if, if someone mistreats you, maybe it's not because they're a bad person, maybe it is something that you did to prompt it, or, you know, Ryan and other, so thinkers kind of talk about, you know, the events that happen in our lives. We may prescribe them as bad events or a unfortunate events, but that's really what, the value that we are giving them.

They are not actually that in nature, basically what they mean is everything is up to us. We define everything and things don't have to be bad if we don't allow them to be. Yeah. I mean, it's, it's just your perception really is this. Um, and I think it causes a lot of unnecessary suffering with, with me in certain things I've struggled to get over in my past.

Um, I've let it take up so much rent in my head if you will, where I could just shift my perception of it and, and be very grateful that that pain led me to other things. Um, and, and on the flip side I heard people too, right? Like you, can't just a lot of them. Then that's been hurt. And so the way that you feel someone else's walking around feeling exactly that way about you.

Um, and so we're all just hurt all the time and we're all just hurting other people. And I think the best we can do is, is be kind, remember that it's not just you going through whatever emotion it is. Um, and, and even just understand that the events are only, they only hold whatever power we give them.

Exactly. Um, so I'll, I'll get you out of here on this. The podcast that we do here is for young people, for people just kind of navigating early adulthood, trying to figure out all of these things that that mean you freak out about in our lives. And so, um, Now not many young people are studying stoicism and philosophy.

People would probably see it as nerdy, but I think stoicism is a very practical philosophy. I wouldn't necessarily describe it as nerdy, but why do you think that's more young people should kind of be flocking to, to the principles of stoicism? Yeah, that's a great question. Um, and I'm probably like your oldest person on here maybe in thirties, like cutting it.

But, um, I definitely wish I had like, known about it earlier. Um, just in the, in the sense that I think it toughens you mentally a lot. Um, and it, it kind of outlines in your mind. Reason versus emotion. That really there's so much emotion that we feel that does nothing for us. It doesn't serve us at all.

And I think stoicism does a great job of weeding that out and allowing you to be human and feel those things. Um, but not necessarily give them the driving wheel and have them control your future. Um, so as a younger person, I wish I got into it because. I'm in business, you know, I feel like control your emotions as a huge deal.

I think you can definitely advance your career and make better choices and come off more intelligent and more controlled in the work environment. If you are of a stoic, um, mindset, uh, and then relationships too, you know, a lot of relationships are toxic. We've all had one or several and, um, you know, stopping and pausing and thinking, okay, am I really mad at this?

Is it my ego that's mad if it is my ego. Okay. What part of me cares that this, you know, is happening and it's it's so self-reflected, so instead of attacking your partner or the other person, it forces you to look at yourself. Um, and I did. Yeah. So relationships work, and I think in all aspects of, of growing up.

And, you know, maturing, it's, it's super beneficial because it's just, um, yeah. Very giving you the power to choose, um, what you get power, I guess. Well, uh, Gabrielle, you are a wise woman beyond her years. Uh, I love the work that you're doing over on, uh, the Sierra with stoic IgE account. I also think you're, you're on Tik TOK as well.

Oh, yes, but please Mike, Dick Doug is very much like really outrageous me trying to be funny, completely not stoic. Um, that is the other side of me, but, um, yeah, I don't think anything's happening with that. I mean, it's okay. But I haven't made anything on it in forever. Okay. Well it's all right. You know, Seneca also, in addition to being a great stoic was also a, a flawed individual in many ways.

So we're all flawed individuals. Yes. Uh, thank you for joining me and I, uh, I wish you luck on your stomach journey. Thank you. Thank you for having me. And the conversation was great.