Catch Curt Mercadante on the #PirateBroadcast
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Russ Johns 0:24
And it's another beautiful day of the pirate broadcast and we are excited to bring interesting people doing interesting things. Every single episode, something interesting will become of this episode, I promise. And if you're not familiar with the Pirate broadcasts, we stream on facebook youtube. Also on this periscope thing so you know Twitter if you're on Twitter, you can you can connect with us and here on LinkedIn live as well. So today we have have a special guest you probably know my bearded brother, Curt. Good morning. How are you?
Curt Mercadante 1:07
Good morning, Russ. Thanks so much for having me on we share barbers and stylists here. You know, it's but your your beard has put mine to shame here. Yours is a lot longer.
Russ Johns 1:19
You know, and it's one of those things he just kind of grows it's gravity thing you know, it's like the gravity took place and everything on top of the bottom.
Curt Mercadante 1:30
Exactly, exactly. Well, thanks for having me on. I really appreciate it.
Russ Johns 1:34
Yeah, you know, it's a fascinating thing. We've been connected for a while and really, you know, LinkedIn is so unusual in respect with people going in and out of your feeds and I, oh, probably what, six months ago or so, really active and you know, all of a sudden your audience changes and you see different people come in and go in And depending on your activity, you just have to continue to go out there and do an outreach program to get new people or see the same people all the time. And the pirate broadcast has been great to get an audience together on a regular basis. However, it's nice to be able to bring people in that I've been connected with for a while like yourself and so catch us up on what are you doing right now? What do you, what are your goals? You know, you do a mastermind a couple of different activities around the interwebs and so catch us up on what's new for Kurt?
Curt Mercadante 2:37
Yeah, so you know, Speaker trainer, author Just got off a call booking a speaking engagement across the pond in Europe. Now of course, everything that's going on, can't worry about whether or not it's going to happen. You just got to move forward and focus on your outputs and what you can control. You know, I'm still in the process, promoting my book, Five Pillars of the freedom lifestyle.
Russ Johns 3:02
Congratulations on the launch and everthing.
Curt Mercadante 3:04
Thank you, thank you very much. And really a passion project that is going to turn into a prosperity project. Not just for me, but for anyone is really it's called the freedom media network. We're going to be launching our new site here. This week or next week, we launched our YouTube page, or YouTube channel last month, and really about it's long form interviews where I actually sit down with people, interesting people designed to spur critical thinking. that empowers you to be more free, more abundant, more prosperous. So I've had you know, prosperity guru, Randy Gage, written 14 books two times New York Times bestseller, all the way from that to Brigadier General retired Brigadier General Robert Spaulding who just wrote a book called stealth war all about China and some scary stuff that's going on regarding the weaponization of 5g. Whether or not coronavirus may have been created in a lab there, you know, just interesting discussions that you may agree with it. You may disagree with it. But it's designed to spur critical thinking and discussion, because I think that critical thinking is something that is not only really important as we embark on a really fast changing world that's going, that's changing exponentially every day. Yeah. But some of it, I think, as we're seeing over the last week or two is lacking in our society, with a herd mentality, and I call it peak lobotomy stage. So
Russ Johns 4:37
I can't disagree with you. I cannot disagree with you. And also, I think it's really important that we start having different conversations, more intimate conversations, because, you know, as we grow so much in technology and expand our horizons on what is possible, I think we still need to keep the humanity involved in it. And you know, and it's one of the things that I spread, you know, is the kindness factor and you know, the community and involved in it, it doesn't require you to be in the same room all together all at once to take place. And it is something that I think a lot of people are starving for is the community of of ideas, and expanding, you know, on on some of these topics that you're talking about, so, on the book, you know, let's talk a little bit about the book. Let's dive into the book. And in the five pillars and talk about what those pillars represent to you personally And what what kind of a journey Did you take to get to that, that pull the publish button?
Curt Mercadante 5:50
Yeah, the you know, the book, it's, it's not just about my journey, but there's a lot of people that folks here on LinkedIn will recognize that are in the book, Tim Allison of the screw the naysayers podcast is in there. Marcus are really Sanderson, Natalia doctrine Italia kowski, Dr. Bobby Canary, Tov Evans, Fraser Cameron, folks who reached a crossroads in their lives and decided to find freedom and fulfillment, or help and/or help others get there as well. Tim Allison, when I quote him in the book, you know, we had a discussion about the fact that and he had a guest, I can't remember who the guest was, it said, you know, unfortunately, all too often it takes what they call infrastructure rattling events to get us to make those changes in our lives. Hmm. Because often the pain of the status quo has not often I would say every time the pain of the status quo has to become greater than the perceived pain of making a change. So often, it takes an infrastructure rattling event for me, it was the death of my father. to snap me out of it. I had seven figures Nice house nice cars. I had scaled a PR and ad agency. You know, I've built three profitable businesses. But when my father died, he was someone who worked on the space program holds a patent for the switches on the Boeing 777 designed fighter jet technology, all this cool stuff, and at his wake grown men are crying not a single person mentioned his career. It was what he did in the community at church reading audiobooks for the blind, being at all my recitals My, my, you know, my track meets all those types of things. And so I decided then in there to make a change course, I was still scared and it took several years, but I shut down my agency at peak revenue overnight. And I have people say, Well, why didn't you sell it off? I said, Well, yeah, if I had allowed myself and given my permission to really be aware of my feelings, like five years earlier, I would do that but I felt guilt I felt shame because I'm a man right and I'm supposed to tough it out and supposed to make the money and do those things.
Russ Johns 7:58
Curt Mercadante 7:59
And I think that that's a common occurrence. You know, a lot of people are shocked when I tell them that statistically, when you look at suicides in America, seven and 10 are by men aged 45 to 54. By the way, white men aged 45 to 54. And I don't say that to make anyone feel sorry for middle aged white men.
Russ Johns 8:23
Curt Mercadante 8:24
What I'm saying is, it's interesting because women's rates of depression are much higher. And from what I've read, women seek help. Men do not because it goes back to that guilt, that shame that I got to tough it out. I'm gonna compare it to being in a gym. You know, there's normal workout pain where you push through the pain, and that's good. Then there's the pain. If you're doing something and you feel something like I just tore a muscle, but you're like, I'm gonna push out another three reps. There's a difference between pain and stupidity and toughness and stupidity. And we have to realize that and make a change. And I did and, you know, dedicated my life to helping others find freedom and fulfillment and the book, the pillars are what I used to get there. And I use that to help others get there as well.
Russ Johns 8:43
Well, and I think you bring up several good points and I want to kind of dive into this because it's important for us to understand as a society that the pain and the challenges we run into are not unique to an individual.
Curt Mercadante 9:30
Russ Johns 9:31
They're universal. And when we think and feel that we need to do this alone, and it's an isolation and when we isolate, that's the seed for, you know, depression. That's the seed for mental illness. That's the seed for some of the things that really impact our life in a negative way. And, you know, I've had you know, With my son, my son suicide, you know, it's it's a mental, it's a challenge that, you know, it's whatever he felt he was going through and whatever he believed that was the only way that he had to choose to exit. And so it's really a mind bending event when you think about how can you get to that point and you know, trust me, you know, I've had you know, times in my life where it's felt that way. Yeah and asking for help is is one of the best ways to start the journey back from that depression that you know that feeling of I have to do this myself you know, tighten up the bootstraps, just get it done. You know, I don't need directions I know where I'm going.
Yeah, and you know, it's interesting if there's a two way street, right, because People often who you think are doing great.
Curt Mercadante 11:05
Aren't because we're taught to listen, I think there's something to be said about positive mental attitude. And having an abundant mindset. I think that's extremely important. And so, but that goes deeper than just putting on a face and putting on a fake, you know, fake facade.
Russ Johns 11:23
Curt Mercadante 11:23
And so, you know, certainly there has been a situation where, you know, in my family, there's been a lot of addiction, a bipolar disorder, and a host of other really horrible problems. And I think it's always assumed that, well, Curt was fine. Curt escaped that Curt went to the private school, he's fine. And so no one ever asked how you're doing. You know, you can't always assume and I'm not saying this to make me feel sorry for myself because I had to gird my loins and say, screw it. Don't care and cut the scarce I call them scarcity pimps, those people who make you feel bad for doing good. You know, it's funny that the I had a blog post recently that you know, okay, fat shaming is bad and I agree with that, but somehow healthy shaming is okay. Like, Oh, I heard that, you know, I've been I've been what's called paleo for 12 years after a lot of pain and a lot of problems and I have the most unhealthy people in the world Tell me, you know, well, I heard that's unhealthy. I heard it's gonna do this to your cholesterol is this and I'm like, I'm sorry. I couldn't hear you over the sound of you shoving cookies in your mouth. You know, it's funny or even now with Corona virus. My wife and I were talking there's 600,000 deaths from heart disease a year.
Russ Johns 12:43
Curt Mercadante 12:44
And it's like, these people are worried about the corona virus and so now they have to stay home and what their heart disease is gonna get worse. You know.
Russ Johns 12:51
Curt Mercadante 12:51
It's like, control do with Do what you can do with what you have. I think it was Teddy Roosevelt who said that focus on what you can control You are your brother's keeper in terms of not worrying about them in so far as getting in their business and judging, but simply asking, if you really care, not a fake thing, how you doing? You're doing okay. And and actually listening to that, rather than asking that question, just as an opening to tell them what's going on in your life. Does that make sense?
Russ Johns 13:25
Absolutely makes sense. Yeah. And I think and I think we need to be more aware of it. You know, kindness is cool. Ask, reach out, just send a text message to a friend, you know, just, you know, sometime today just check in for no reason other than checking in.
Curt Mercadante 13:45
Russ Johns 13:45
You know, I, you know, it's it's the same thing, you know, I changed my lifestyle. I've changed my lifestyle several times, to, you know, chase the arrive at the point in time where I could, you know, be here in Arizona helping care for my parents and, you know, be around family and people I care about. And, you know, it's like, it's a, it's a choice. And you have to, you know, everything is a compromise in our life. Everything is a decision that we have to work through. And some decisions don't work out exactly the way you imagined. You know, and sometimes the sacrifice of chasing the six, the so called success is not necessarily successful. Right?
Curt Mercadante 14:34
Yeah. And I recently on my show, Randy gage and I talked about, you know, there's there's fine lines and all these things, right, which is why the context and why I think long form discussions like these are important. Because snippets taken out of snippets, people assume certain things without actually having a discussion. For instance, I talked about customer personas all the time marketing one on one, know your customers and speak to them. I've had people, you know, I'll do videos and I'll drop f bombs and I say things. That's how I am naturally. Right? Yeah. I'm not saying that's good or bad. You may love it, you may hate it. And people will come in and say I would never buy from you because it and I'll come in I'll say, Hey, I totally have empathy for your opinion. You're probably not in my customer persona. People see that and take it as a, they compare what I talked about in terms of marketing one on one customer persona to like, you know, xenophobic, phobic profiling. It's like, no, there's a difference here. You know, it's and or racial profiling or something. This the same way. There's a fine line between making a conscious decision to give your time to people in your life, right? Mm hmm. Are you doing it solely A sense of guilt or, are you doing it because there really is a true connection there. And the reason I bring this up there are many people that I run into who the scarcity pimps in their lives, some of them are in their family have taken control of their lives and basically ruin their lives. You know, because we're programmed from age one through seven we're so susceptible to programming and so if you have people in your lives that can be parents they can be teachers they can be other people program you for scarcity program you for just over negativity program you for, you know, hey, you are a sorry, sinner, you're unworthy and you're born loser. And life is the struggle, if that's
Russ Johns 16:51
the way it is.
Curt Mercadante 16:52
That's just the way it is. And then you really have to look it's a fine line between there even if they are People in your life, who are family who are quote, unquote, friends, it's a fine line you have to look between cutting them out of your life. Yeah, and investing more time in them or being down to Pawnee as a former Hindu monk, who now goes around and speaks, calls, you know, being affectionately detached, being nice and being kind, but not letting one of those scarcity pimps ruin two lives in the process. You know, you stop the flow there, but it's a fine line, right? Because we want to be kind to people, but by the same token, we have to look if they're energy vampires, you got to protect yourself as well.
Russ Johns 17:41
Well, and I think I think it was Jim Rohn that said, you know, you are the accumulation of the five people you hang out with Yeah. So you know, if you encourage in invite people that have an abundance mindset, have a positive outlook and you know, have a having a project approach to life that is, hey, every day is a gift. Every day is a moment that we should cherish and, and be grateful for. That's a lot different than saying wake up, but it's all that sucks. I got to go to work, you know, what the hell am I gonna do this for? And it's like, there's a difference. And it's sometimes it's a choice, because everybody feels down now. And then. However, if you're thinking about the gratitude, I think gratitude has is a powerful tool to get us to think about other people, other things outside of ourselves. And I think it's important for us as a society to start to understand that life, life is not, you know, this is a lottery one, you know, just being born is a gift, you know, the fact that we have air and oxygen and, and things around us that bring us together and the fact that we're unique individuals, every single one of us, and it's just a perspective that some people just gloss over and don't even really appreciate. So I want I want to take a minute, Kurt to thank everybody Latasha from Houston. Gabriel. Jennifer. Good morning, Angie, love that you're here. Jeff young could have a wonderful day to day always found the best way to relieve depression is to stop focusing on myself. Right on right on brother. Uh, you know, these things that we're talking about Kurt are really important subjects and I know that you have a platform. So let's talk about the platform and how this is long form conversations are gonna, gonna take off for you and in the, in your media. Adventure. Talk a little bit about that.
Curt Mercadante 19:42
Yeah, I think I think it goes back to critical thinking, you know, we do a lot of things due to programming, as we've talked about. If if you were raised to have a, you know, it's interesting when I talk about programming, it's not just your parents, it's not just your teachers. It might be church pulpits, you know, I grew up Catholic learning that prosperity and wealth is bad. Mm hmm. But then you look at the interpretations of the Bible and you go back to Constantine and what was removed from the Bible and you look at the original translations and everyone says money is the root of all evil. That's actually not the saying it's the love of money is the root of all evil. And so, but you would never know that based on 32nd sound clips or a five minute sermon, right? Because you look to others and and and we join clubs gangs you know these things out of a sense of unity
Russ Johns 20:41
community, cuz we we feel owned or we feel like we belong.
Curt Mercadante 20:46
Exactly. And you're seeing this growth and explosion in what I would call dangerous tribalism now, in politics and and other things where you can't even have a discussion Certain things.
I worked in politics for many years. I don't do the political thing anymore I consider myself to be there's a new term called trans partisan, where it's let's solve problems. That alone I've had people shout at me that that is a danger because you got to pick a side and you got to do these things where people won't even you can't even have a discussion about the fact that you don't want to talk about politics anymore, right because
Russ Johns 21:26
I don't want to talk about politics.
Curt Mercadante 21:28
Yeah, right. And, and you lack me you see this with coronavirus now.
Russ Johns 21:33
Yeah, it's a political issue.
Curt Mercadante 21:36
It's, it's become a virtue signaling. My wife said this last night. It's like, you know, when people vote and I'm gonna offend some people here, but now it's people never give a thought to anything regarding policy. I think there's a difference between policy and politics. Never give a thought to anything. Don't get out in the community and do anything. They substitute a click a Like a share, for going out knocking on doors like if you really care about an issue. Go do something, get off the couch. But what they substitute now is, its virtue signaling. It's the I'm a better person than you because I posted a picture on Facebook with my I voted sticker. I say this is someone who used to do that. I say this is someone who used to sit there for hours and hours watching cable news and getting mad and getting angry and getting stretched awaited.
Russ Johns 22:22
Did you graduate?
Curt Mercadante 22:24
We don't allow news in the house. Right? And I have people that
Russ Johns 22:28
I don't like TV period. Yeah.
Curt Mercadante 22:31
Well, the corona virus is the same thing now. It's become a virtue signaling thing. If you I've signaled I've seen this. I've seen debates now in arguments. I'm a better person than you. Because I think we should cancel that networking event. Because it's, we're saving lives and we're saving seniors. And if you try to actually have a long form discussion about well, let's let's actually look at that looks like let's compare the trade offs right? If you shut down that 30 person networking event, But you don't shut down the local Boeing factory with 7000 people to shutting down the networking event really matter. You know, if you don't shut down everything, then you might as well shut down nothing. But you. So so when I talk about critical thinking and long form discussions, I think that's where it comes in. And having it on on a variety of issues to really go beyond, you know, 45 minute discussions, not 32nd discussions, not 140 character tweets. Yeah, I think this is the future because, you know, the sound bites play into our desire for security.
Russ Johns 23:42
Curt Mercadante 23:43
And if we were really, if humanity was so obsessed with security, that we never ventured out to the caves. And what was outside the caves, a lot of dangerous stuff from the environment, from wild beasts from all these huge things. Well, we use our minds and critical thinking to survive and thrive now, oh my gosh, the answer is quarantine. Someone's got to save us for it. We, you know, we can't control ourselves. We need someone to ban supersize drinks because I can't control my, you know, it's like, just stop. Nerd your loins think use the brain that's our most powerful, our bodies are really weak when you think about it.
Russ Johns 24:24
All right, our ability to adapt is the most powerful thing we can do, use critical thought, add a little logic, and then, you know, move forward. Like, you know, adapt to your environment, adapt to what is going on around you. You know, and I think that goes back to our original point, you know, depression and things are also, you know, kind of started as a result of inability to adapt, you know, it's like, okay, you're in a situation that you don't feel like there's any way out in in, you know, you have to, you have to change in order to change. Right? apps and all of these things go back to critical thought. Thinking about, you know, Einstein said, Hey, if I had to solve a problem I think about it for, you know, if I had an hour to solve a problem, think about it for about 55 minutes. Right? Right. And it's really we have so many opportunities in this world, to be able to generate new ideas, new ways of thinking, new ways of adjusting and, and I would love this to be a long form conversation because this is really important conversation to take place in life in the way we're pursuing our, our, our future, you know, how are we going to manage through some of these things, you know, you talk about health care, you talk about politics, you talk about life in general and The isolation of ideas and being the, you know, going up on the hill and planting your flag and saying this is the way it should be, you know, screw all you other people. And that's not necessarily true. You know, we all have ideas. We all have individual, you know, thoughts and processes that we're going through, we have these things that we have to hold on to. And I think it's important for us to understand that, you know, you have an opinion, Curt, just like, I have an opinion. Yeah. And it doesn't, it's not good, bad or indifferent. It's not right or wrong. It's, it's just from where I come from. It's my perspective. It's my history. It's my information that I've I've accumulated right or wrong, you know, from religion, kids, parents, family environment, you know, if you're brought up in in one environment compared to another environment, you're gonna have a different perspective online. It's just the way it is.
Curt Mercadante 26:51
Yeah, I don't know. Have you seen the Joker with Joaquin Phoenix?
Russ Johns 26:56
No, I haven't seen that yet.
Curt Mercadante 26:57
You know, it's it's so interesting because I mean, it's very dark. It's It's disturbing. But at the very end, you know, he gives a speech, I won't give it away. But it's funny that the right looks at it and says, aha, and the left looks at it and says, aha, but in the end his speeches about the fact that we're all talking past each other. And there's there's no sense of empathy. And people can confuse empathy with sympathy, which they're not the same thing. And they confuse empathy with if you have a different view. And I have a different view. Empathy is me realizing he has a different view, but I'm going to listen, maybe there's something I can learn. It's not giving in and being converted by you. That's not empathy. I can maintain my values but still respect that you have a different opinion. And I think we've lost that. And in many cases, when you look at tribalism, tribalism and social media, tribalism and religion, tribalism and politics, tribalism across it, usually gangs, it comes in many cases from people who don't have meaning in their lives, who don't have that sense of meaning. And when you don't have that you latch on to things, you can latch on to the dopamine rush that we know that has been proven study after study of Facebook of Netflix, and you substitute that where there is a hole, you substitute that in. And what it does is it sucks you in and we know based on studies they did on Facebook in 2012, that your timeline your newsfeed affects your mood and your behavior. And that's a really scary thing. And so I think the ultimate freedom I asked, you know, what does freedom mean to you from from my guests. I think the ultimate freedom comes between your two ears, because if you can be aware of what's going on around you have that situational awareness, then you're less likely to be affected by it in terms of mind control, and that may sound that may sound hyped But really, when you think about it, right? If you give other people the ability to affect your dopa mean and substitute that for real meaning and fulfillment, you've allowed someone else to control your mind.
Russ Johns 29:11
Yeah, yeah. I, and you see it so often as well. It's like, Oh, I just need more likes. And hey, I, I'm not immune to it. I'm not Yeah, yeah. I mean, it's programmed. It's, it's proven. It's like, Okay, my numbers going down, and I feel sad. It's like,
Curt Mercadante 29:32
Russ Johns 29:33
Independent thought is so, so important right now more than any other time, I think because there's so many things that could impact our lives. And I just, that's why I am passionate about what I'm doing. You know, and I, and I'm always fascinated by people and their opinions and their thoughts, and how they arrived at where they are. And I just want to thank you, Kurt for being here. It's I'm I'm humbled by the opportunity to have a conversation. And I look forward to longer conversations in the future and, and supporting you and your adventures. So thank you so much for being here,
Curt Mercadante 30:07
Russ likewise, and I really appreciate you for having me on. And I will say you're very meticulous and how you more than any other show I've ever been on reminders and getting me the information. It's awesome. So you do you have a great operation running here?
Russ Johns 30:21
Well, and I'm expanding that operation to the pirate syndicate to help others that don't want to deal with the overwhelm the technology and everything that goes along with it, because I believe that we all have a gift. We all have a voice. You know, sometimes you have to decide to step out and share that voice and that gift. And, and so if I can assist people in their journey, and help them with the overwhelm, and the impact that they can make in the in the world, I'd love to do so. So, you know, that's one of the things that I'm passionate about and the whole process that you went through and experienced in the brand new In everything that goes along with it five years ago, you know, this was very, it was challenging. You know, it was very challenging to get online and stream live and do some things like we're doing now. And it's, it's changing lives is changing lives. And I believe that, you know, we need to share these ideas, we need to share those thoughts and, and, and make sure that society has an opportunity to voice their opinion in certain ways and also be open to other people's thoughts and opinions. Oh,
Curt Mercadante 31:33
yeah, absolutely. And with everything that's changing, heck, look now, social distancing, and everyone's got to stay home. There's great opportunity to allow people, all right, while you're staying home, wondering if your job is going to be eliminated. Start putting your thoughts out there. I think it's Matt Ridley, who is the rational optimist, talked about the way protein the re progress actually happens is when ideas commingle and have Sex that was his term. And but to have sex, you got to have that empathy and you got to bring them together. So you are enabling sex with your show. So I salute you.
Russ Johns 32:14
Well, what a wonderful Wednesday and with that idea peace, love and harmony, right? You know, it's like, let's have this throw the second. This has been fabulous. And I look forward to the next adventure and staying in contact with you and whatever's happening in the media world for you today. So
Curt Mercadante 32:36
likewise, Russ, and thanks so much for having me on. Thanks for doing this.
Russ Johns 32:40
And all also, as you know, kindness is cool and smiles are free and you enjoy the day
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