0:00:11.5 Mike Vacanti: Hello Jordan.


0:00:12.9 Jordan Syatt: What’s going on, Michael?


0:00:14.3 Mike Vacanti: What exactly were you doing just before we got on this podcast?


0:00:19.4 Jordan Syatt: Pooping.


0:00:20.3 Mike Vacanti: And why didn’t you wipe?


0:00:23.7 Jordan Syatt: I did wipe, what are you talking about?




0:00:29.4 Mike Vacanti: We were on the phone, I thought we were about to start the podcast, so I switched it over to FaceTime… We’re virtual, by the way. We’re back to virtual podcast, and we were facetiming and Jordan was pooping, but then like two seconds later he wasn’t anymore, so I assumed you didn’t wipe.


0:00:45.2 Jordan Syatt: No, that’s ridiculous, because first and foremost, I called you and then you didn’t pick up or you ignored my call, and then I waited a few minutes and I was like, I gotta use the bathroom. So I went to go poop, and then when I called you again, then you picked up and you said, “You’re ready?” And I was like, “Yeah, I’m ready.” And then you switched to FaceTime, but you weren’t even looking at me for the first 30 seconds, you kept doing that thing where you kept waving your hand over the screen, and you did that once, and then I didn’t say anything and you did it again, I was like, “What’s up, Mike?” And you laughed, and then you picked it up and looked at me and I was already done wiping.


0:01:19.2 Mike Vacanti: Got it. So you were wiping while we were on FaceTime, I just wasn’t paying attention.


0:01:23.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Of course, and I thought you were just…


0:01:25.7 Mike Vacanti: That makes me feel better.


0:01:26.3 Jordan Syatt: My buddy David and I…


0:01:27.1 Mike Vacanti: Honestly, I thought I was gonna learn something because I didn’t know if your nutrition and your gut health was that dialed that you were on some kind of…


0:01:33.6 Jordan Syatt: I just didn’t need to wipe, yeah.


0:01:35.0 Mike Vacanti: I thought maybe you’re on a no-wiping regimen of some sort.


0:01:37.7 Jordan Syatt: Could you imagine I just had such clean feces that I just… I didn’t even need to wipe?


0:01:43.9 Mike Vacanti: If anyone did, I would expect it to be you with the miso soup and all of the pro and prebiotics that you work into your favorite foods.


0:01:53.3 Jordan Syatt: Kombucha. That’s what I’m drinking right now.


0:01:55.2 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, you’re just a gut health connoisseur. You could… You could brand that and market it and make millions and millions and millions, but you’re a good dude, so you stick to what works.


0:02:05.3 Jordan Syatt: My buddy David and I… Did I tell you this? When we were in high school, my buddy David and I, we always used to play jokes on each other out in public. That’s what I thought you were just doing. I thought I told you this before and I thought you’re just doing it. I remember we used to play jokes on each other, so when we would go out and we’d be at a grocery store or checking out from CVS or Walgreens or whatever, we would always try to embarrass each other in front of the person checking us out, and so I remember one time we were checking out and my buddy David was buying something and I was like, “Oh shoot, David, did you remember to wipe this time?” And I’ll never forget the look on his face, he was just like, “I can’t believe you just said that.” And then of course, the cashier was like, “What?” [chuckle] So we used to use that line, If we ever wanted to embarrass you, I was like, “Oh no, did you remember to wipe this time? And that’s what I thought you were doing just now.


0:02:55.2 Mike Vacanti: I did not know that specific story, no. I was genuinely part curious and part concerned.


0:03:01.3 Jordan Syatt: If anyone ever wants to play a joke on their friend when they’re checking out from a store, just ask them if they remembered to wipe and just watch their look of utter bewilderment. [chuckle]


0:03:11.3 Mike Vacanti: Friend, significant other whoever. Is that David, your Russian friend who does jiu-jitsu?


0:03:18.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah. Same David.


0:03:20.3 Mike Vacanti: Got it.


0:03:20.8 Jordan Syatt: Same David.


0:03:22.3 Mike Vacanti: Do you want to announce where you are sitting right now?


0:03:25.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, sure. I’m still working on the YouTube video, but God, it’s taking forever.


0:03:29.6 Mike Vacanti: Oh sorry, never mind.


0:03:31.1 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, we’ll wait until the YouTube comes out just so people… We’ll wait, we’ll wait, but man, this YouTube video is tough for me to make.


0:03:38.8 Mike Vacanti: Why is that?


0:03:39.0 Jordan Syatt: I just don’t think it’s gonna be a good video at all. It was really hard to film while packing, while the movers were there, while we’re on the way to the airport, when we get back. Moving is hard enough, never mind trying to film good content for a YouTube video and I’m watching the footage and I’m like, “This sucks.”




0:04:03.6 Mike Vacanti: Do you know what I think that actually highlights is the difference between the vloggers who, if we look at the last four to seven years, the vloggers who legitimately documented every day of their life, regardless of what was going on, and somehow made it into an amazing vlog, compared to vlog, where you just set the time… It’s so much harder what Casey did compared to if I, for example, was trying to vlog once a week and like… We’ve talked about vlogs give you something to do for the day, so I was like, “What should I do today? Oh, I’ll do this for the vlog.” But to actually make what you’re doing into a good video is super impressive.


0:04:46.9 Jordan Syatt: It’s what a lot of the biggest vloggers today say is like if you ever just run out of content ideas, just spend more money, and usually you’ll come up with a good story, but I think what Casey did, just genius and every… Being able to take the most mundane thing and turn it into an amazing story told via video, just… So that’s what I’m trying to do with this editing, and that’s really what I’m learning through this editing process is that editing is an art form. It really is an art to learn how to take what might just be… I’m watching this, I’m just like, “This is… ” I’m getting in a bad mood watching it because I wasn’t in a good mood making it, ’cause you’re moving… You’re moving. You’re packing, you’re making sure your stuff is being taken care of, you’re stressed out, you’re trying to make your flight. You’re not like, “Oh yeah, this is wonderful and stress free,” and I’m watching it, I’m like, I’m in a bad mood right now. This is why I’m trying to make it a good video, but we’ll see.


0:05:44.5 Mike Vacanti: You know, the good news, the silver lining is, as we both know, sometimes the stuff you think will absolutely pop off and be incredible is whatever, and random videos or articles go nuts, so…


0:06:00.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, it’s true.


0:06:01.8 Mike Vacanti: Who knows? Who knows?


0:06:02.3 Jordan Syatt: It’s true.


0:06:04.6 Mike Vacanti: What else is happening? I got a long list of questions that I’m just gonna randomly and haphazardly pick through that came from our audience.


0:06:12.2 Jordan Syatt: Okay. How’s your lifting going?


0:06:14.3 Mike Vacanti: It’s going well.


0:06:16.7 Jordan Syatt: Feel like it’s been on point lately, right?


0:06:17.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, I’ve been on point for a few months now with my lifting, which is the longest streak I think in some time. I told you earlier, I was in the middle of a workout and they made an announcement this morning that no more masks for people who are vaccinated in the gym and just masks were flying, people were hootin’ and hollerin’, high fivin’ and going crazy.


0:06:45.7 Jordan Syatt: Was It like an AMBER Alert? It just went to everybody’s phone?


0:06:48.6 Mike Vacanti: No, no, it was through the gym because…


0:06:52.9 Jordan Syatt: Oh, oh. Got it. Got it.


0:06:54.5 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, I think the way it works is that the state makes the call and then the individual businesses are allowed to continue to require it or not.


0:07:05.0 Jordan Syatt: That’s so exciting. Just to not have to do that anymore.


0:07:08.8 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. But it was a good work out.


0:07:12.7 Jordan Syatt: Upper, lower, core, neck, biceps, triceps.


0:07:14.7 Mike Vacanti: Upper. No neck today, full upper. It’s amazing how much harder it is to do a high volume and intense workout when you’re relatively depleted. If you’ve actually been in a deficit for a little bit and carbs are lower than normal, and then you try to do like… I think I have eight exercises, times three working sets, 24 hard sets in a workout. It’s just brutal.


0:07:46.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. You notice it immediately.


0:07:49.7 Mike Vacanti: Well, and especially later in the workout, you can maintain strength, but… Yeah. Everything’s good though. Everything’s good here. How about that crypto?


0:08:01.9 Jordan Syatt: Oh man.


0:08:04.8 Mike Vacanti: It’s been a few weeks since we podcasted, so I feel like we need to do a few recaps.


0:08:10.3 Jordan Syatt: Of course, right after I decide to go in on crypto, and I tell people publicly, “Yeah, I’m investing a little bit in crypto,” which is true it’s not much just small amounts, but just the craziest drop last night. I woke up to a text today from Mike saying, “Text me and you’re up, crypto is collapsing.” [chuckle] That’s how I woke up today.


0:08:35.6 Mike Vacanti: I woke up to a text from Gary that said, “Lost a lot of weight and a lot of money.” [chuckle] But even to backtrack further, you bought a little bit of… I don’t know if we wanna go into specifics, but a very small amount of Bitcoin…


0:08:55.4 Jordan Syatt: We can go into the specifics. Bitcoin and Ethereum.


0:08:58.3 Mike Vacanti: Bitcoin, but as… An unbelievably small percent of net worth into Bitcoin as a hedge against inflation/it’s an asymmetric bet against the dollar, ending up being very weak in the future, so you’re not putting a lot of money into it. It’s a very small amount that could go way up, but is most likely going to stay around where it is or even lose some. The investment in Ethereum was for Gary’s launch of VeeFriends. And we ended up just getting lucky that Ethereum returned 40% in the week leading up to Gary’s launch of his NFT. And if you have no idea what we’re talking about, this part of the conversation will be over momentarily and it’s probably not worth digging deeper on unless you’re very interested, but yeah, but then this morning, Ethereum and Bitcoin were down like 30% to 40% each, which is nuts.


0:10:00.6 Jordan Syatt: Just insane. It’s such a volatile market.


0:10:03.1 Mike Vacanti: Not normal swings.


0:10:03.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, just really not focusing on it, just gonna leave it in there. Not look at it for about 10 to 20 years, and we’ll see what happens. [chuckle]


0:10:15.1 Mike Vacanti: That’s like… I said before, the reason it’s hard with crypto is because the percentage swings are so massive. Usually, the average day-to-day swing in the stock markets or in other investments is so much smaller that… Most people, at least… There’s less temptation to be glued to the day-to-day swings, but when you can have a 40% drop and then rebound plus 25 within an eight-hour window. It’s just…


0:10:43.6 Jordan Syatt: Crazy.


0:10:44.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, it’s hard to not look at it, but I think that is the… That’s just good investing advice in general, is you have your convictions or strategy, whatever you wanna call it, and allocate your assets to the investments that you think make the most sense, and then leave them. You’re not day trading, you’re not buying and selling consistently, you’re not trying to flip for small profit, it’s like, we both have a business, which is how we make money and invest as a long-term strategy so that’s smart by you.


0:11:16.5 Jordan Syatt: Between crypto and then taxes, just…




0:11:23.2 Jordan Syatt: Just… Man, it’s so funny, I remember when I was younger and I didn’t understand… I’m still not an expert in taxes or any of this stuff, but when I really knew nothing, I would hear the phrase, “Yeah, just write it off as an expense,” and just assume that meant that that income was irrelevant or… I thought it was always profitable because, “Oh yeah, just write it off as an expense,” it’s just what people would say and man, people have no idea what they’re talking about when they say… When they say… Even when they say things like, people aren’t paying their taxes. This is something that you’ve taught me is like, they don’t know what they’re talking about.


0:12:05.3 Mike Vacanti: No, those are two different things, but the one that I think is more relevant or at least more bite-sized for this conversation is when people are like, “Oh, it’s a write-off, who cares.” It’s like, no, that doesn’t mean it’s free, that means that… If it’s a write-off, and let’s say you end up with an effective tax rate of 25%, for example, that means that whatever you’re spending money on, you’re going to get a 25% discount on it, right?


0:12:40.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah.


0:12:41.4 Mike Vacanti: So if my Uber to the airport to go fly to a conference to go learn about hip and shoulder health, like that’s a write-off, but that doesn’t mean my Uber to the airport was free, it means that that’s a deduction at year end and that I will effectively get 25% of the amount spent. So if I wanna go to Newark and it’s a 100 bucks, then it was actually a $75 Uber when I get squared away in April of next year. It’s not that it was a free Uber “Oh, it’s a write-off.” Give me all the booze if it’s a write-off for you. Yeah.


0:13:21.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah that’s a really good way to explain it and it’s like…


0:13:24.0 Mike Vacanti: And you know what, the tax… Our tax code is unbelievably confusing and there is so much nuance to it that I don’t even understand that it makes sense that it’s confusing to people.


0:13:38.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. I just remember when… It must have been what, like a year, two years ago, when people were saying things like, these big companies aren’t paying their taxes, and I was like, “Mike, can you explain this to me?”


0:13:50.2 Mike Vacanti: That was… Amazon had a carry-forward, basically. They had a…


0:13:58.0 Jordan Syatt: Can you explain this ’cause I still forget how you explained it but it made so much sense, and then I saw how mainstream media was saying they’re not paying their taxes, and I was like, “They’re straight up lying to our faces, just to get a narrative across.”


0:14:11.6 Mike Vacanti: I’ll explain this with a real caveat that I could be making mistakes here, but basically I believe Amazon lost money in some year, we’ll call it 2017, but their expenses exceeded their revenue so they didn’t have net income and you pay taxes on net income.


0:14:36.1 Jordan Syatt: Right. So just to interrupt real quick, they might have spent more than they made, but mainstream media might just say, “Well, look at how much they made. They made X amount of millions or billions of dollars, da da da da da,” so that’s all they’re reporting and people only hear that one thing, but they’re not saying, well, how much did they spend so they don’t know if they’re net profitable or not.


0:14:55.1 Mike Vacanti: Correct, that’s one way that it could be misrepresented, yeah, absolutely. In this specific case, then you can… And I’m almost certain of this, but corporations can carry losses forward, meaning let’s just make numbers simple, let’s say they lost $3 million and with a company that big, it was probably more than that, but let’s just say they lost $3 million, then the next year we’ll pretend their net income was… They made $3 million. Normally, you would have to pay taxes on that net income of $3 million, but when you have this carry-forward, you can offset the three million loss against the three million in income in your next year and therefore not have to pay taxes or if they would have made 10 million the next year then…


0:15:41.8 Jordan Syatt: Only seven million.


0:15:43.5 Mike Vacanti: They would have to pay taxes on seven million, and some people still don’t like that, they say, “Well, why should that happen?” Or “Why is that in the tax code?” And my interpretation is that it incentivizes growth for the company. The reason Amazon is such an absolute titan is because they’ve had so many losing years, because they’re spending money on people, they’re spending money on employees, they’re spending many, many…


0:16:10.4 Jordan Syatt: Hiring employees, yeah.


0:16:11.0 Mike Vacanti: Research and development, technology like robotics, all of the money that has gone into their supply chain to make it as good and efficient and effective as it is, that’s all money that they are, in a sense, they’re incentivized to spend that money for many reasons because it’s gonna lead to future greater profit, but in the current year giving them that carry forward means that if they are… If they lose money in the current year, it doesn’t hurt them as much because they get to carry that loss forward to offset against future year taxes, and I think you only get to carry it forward a specific number of years. I’m not exact… I wanna say three is the number that’s coming to mind from my accounting days, but I don’t… I would use the Google machine on that one.


0:17:00.3 Jordan Syatt: I’m just… In fitness, I’m always… I think anyone… Probably anyone listening to this is very well aware of how mainstream media and all this stuff is like they twist things, they don’t really report the facts, and it’s just like, they say things to get an emotional response rather than actually, factually reporting the data, and I remember when you explained this to me, I was like, “How did I not understand that they would do that for everything, not just fitness and health,” right? And I just see so much of what they’re reporting in regard to taxes or in regard to whatever it is, and I’m like, “Man, they’re really… They’re… ” And I tweeted about this yesterday, I said, “There is no question that when I watch the news, I’m in a terrible mood and when I don’t watch the news, I’m in a great mood.” And it’s crazy to me how much the mainstream media goes out of its way simply and purely and solely to get an emotional response out of people, rather than reporting the facts. It’s unbelievable, it’s crazy.


0:18:04.6 Mike Vacanti: Dude late 2014, I made a blog post called 40 rules for life, and one of them was never watch the news, even back then, it felt like that to me. And to play slight Devil’s advocate to you, or not even Devil’s advocate, but just in addition to that, it’s not only… It is mainstream media, absolutely, pick your channel across the board, they all have an agenda and at the bottom of it is profit, so it isn’t educate the nuances of the issue to society, it’s we wanna keep your eyeballs on this screen so that we can make money, but… So much of information over the last 10 plus years, but more and more recently, is decentralized to individuals via social media. So it’s not just mainstream media, but it’s also smaller media conglomerates or even individual media people who are… And you have some people who do a really good job, and I think there’s a market for wanting truth and nuance and less emotional discussion, but it’s mainstream media, and there are smaller media companies who also use those same strategies.


0:19:18.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:19:19.6 Mike Vacanti: We see it in fitness. It’s not just the magazine at the checkout counter who says that you can lose 30 lbs this month eating keto cake every single day; it’s also someone with 500,000 followers and a blue check mark who’s doing swipe-ups and 10% off this and that, and you know, we all know.


0:19:36.3 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, yeah, yeah the Boombods and the tummy toners and all that stuff.


0:19:41.2 Mike Vacanti: All that shit.


0:19:41.2 Jordan Syatt: Man, what a world we live in. The good news is we all have the power to contribute positively to it, which is why we’re listening to this right now.


0:19:51.4 Mike Vacanti: Oh, I like that.


0:19:52.2 Jordan Syatt: Right?


0:19:52.6 Mike Vacanti: I like that a lot, yeah. We have the power to contribute something via what we create as individuals, and we have the power to curate our intake.


0:20:03.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s true as well.


0:20:05.4 Mike Vacanti: And it’s almost arguable whether or not we have the power to curate our intake because…


0:20:10.9 Jordan Syatt: That is arguable, right? Advertisements and all that. [chuckle]


0:20:12.9 Mike Vacanti: Because it’s… Yeah, well, yeah, advertisements, exactly. But also just that it’s so gripping. Naval Ravikant had a segment from a video. If you type into YouTube “Naval cheap dopamine”, you’re gonna get an unbelievable eight-minute video, wait until after the podcast and do that. And it’s very hard to resist a lot of what is out there. And he talks about making food as delicious and salty sweet, sinking millions of dollars into testing for that form of cheap dopamine. He talks about pornography. He talks about just clickbait, all of these things that are not irresistible, but incredibly tempting.


0:21:04.0 Jordan Syatt: Highly palatable media, right?




0:21:07.5 Mike Vacanti: Yes, yes.


0:21:08.3 Jordan Syatt: Right?


0:21:09.0 Mike Vacanti: The Oreos of media.


0:21:10.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. It’s ever since you showed me that clip, the cheap dopamine clip, every time I go to my phone, I second-guess opening Instagram like, “Am I just looking for a cheap hit of dopamine? Am I just looking for that? Am I fiending for another hit?” And oftentimes, I give into it and I’m like, “Alright, yup, I’m gonna get this quick hit of dopamine,” but then that’s also why I’m super glad I got the basketball in my office and the golf in my office because it’s not nearly as… The highs aren’t as high, and the lows aren’t as low, but it’s a much more steady, emotional throughout the day. And by the end of the day, I sleep better and I feel better, and just playing more feels really good, as opposed to trying to get that cheap hit, which… And I think that was a really good reframe by Naval, a huge reframe to think about what you’re doing every time you open up the social media.


0:22:03.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. Good for you, man. My recent one that I have noticed is food.


0:22:11.0 Jordan Syatt: Really?


0:22:11.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, I’m able to differentiate between legitimate hunger and wanting to eat to feel a dopamine spike, but there was a day a few days ago where I ordered artichoke pizza for breakfast.




0:22:30.0 Jordan Syatt: Really? You didn’t tell me that.




0:22:31.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah. Well, you know, I was… Had half a… They’re enormous slices, so you order by the slice, and I ordered a couple slices and had a… I had half a slice with a protein shake, but it was… That wasn’t… There was nothing strategic about that. It was eating to feel a certain way. And even though that leads to you feeling that positive emotion in the short term, it has… Well, it has long, long, long-term effects. If you eat a 2,000-calorie slice of pizza every day for breakfast for your whole life, you’re lopping off years, you’re lopping off quality of life on the backend, we all know that. But there’s also shorter-term in the form of energy levels throughout the day, in the form of sleep quality, potentially, in the form of… If you have food allergies or intolerances, you might enjoy the taste of something, but then, productivity on the backend goes down, how you feel. You feel shittier, cloudy-headed, lethargic, maybe body pains, who knows? But yeah, it’s like a short-term versus long-term pleasure balance. Or that might not even be right. It might even be pleasure versus something that’s greater than pleasure. What’s the difference between going to Instagram to see likes or new followers compared to the joy you get from calling a friend or the joy you get from knocking a bunch of putts in?


0:23:57.6 Jordan Syatt: I think it’s… We could call it pleasure versus presence.


0:24:01.2 Mike Vacanti: Ah, okay.


0:24:02.3 Jordan Syatt: Where it’s like… I think when you’re getting this cheap dopamine hit, and this is getting a little bit philosophical and whatnot, but…


0:24:07.6 Mike Vacanti: No, I love it. And I think we name this episode Pleasure Versus Presence, keep going.


0:24:10.9 Jordan Syatt: I like that, yeah. Oh, wow! Look at that! Making a social media comeback over here. [chuckle] I think when you’re on social media, it’s impossible to be present. You cannot be present when you’re just consuming ad nauseam information and sound bites and video clips and whatever it is from everybody else. You’re essentially… You’re just eliminating the ability to be present in that moment because you’re always living through somebody else, seeing something else. You’re getting these emotional responses that have nothing to do with your life at all. Literally, it has nothing to do with you whatsoever, to the point where you can literally ignore… Where people walk down the street glued to their phone and they don’t know anything about who they’re passing and what they saw, where they can just follow their brains, their patterns, so they know exactly where to go on their way to work, to the grocery store or whatever, they know exactly how to get there. They can even just briefly see when the blinking thing says like, “Hey, stop, don’t walk,” or they do walk and they couldn’t see that back down, glued to their phone. They’re not present at all. Versus if you don’t do that, you’re forced to be with yourself, and to be present in that moment, and to have thoughts about maybe what’s going on in your life or where you are right now. And I think that can be difficult to battle. And if you’re not getting these cheap dopamine hits, it’s really, really difficult.


0:25:33.4 Mike Vacanti: And If you’re constantly getting those cheap dopamine hits and you don’t have time to be present, it’s almost like when you’re present, there are… You’re doing mental inventory. You’re thinking about what you have to do later, you’re thinking about the friend you haven’t talked to in a while, you’re thinking about what you’re gonna have for lunch the next day, and if you need to meal prep. You’re thinking about all of these things. This is similar to what, I think his name’s Michael Easter? His last name’s Easter, I don’t remember his first name, like the holiday, Easter, who wrote a book about comfort and the importance of discomfort. And what you just got to, intuitively, through your own experience, is something he talks about with regards to needing to turn off that circuit that is stimulated, and most of that’s coming from our phone, but turn that off so you can then let your brain relax and repair and yeah. And so many people are, I think the stat he used was in the US; we consume digital media, so that means phone, TV, computer, 11-and-a-half hours a day, on average.


0:26:42.9 Jordan Syatt: Wow!


0:26:43.9 Mike Vacanti: And that’s just not any time to… It’s the opposite of going for a walk in nature.


0:26:52.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yeah, and you even brought up in the last, I don’t know, few days to a week, the value of boredom. And I think that’s always the first go-to when as soon as you feel any level of boredom, “Alright, go, go.”


0:27:04.9 Mike Vacanti: The first tiny bit of boredom, it’s I’m reaching for it, yup.


0:27:08.4 Jordan Syatt: And it’s almost like a… I think if you sit with it and you don’t give into it for that first inch, you’ll start to realize you get a little bit anxious. I think that first inch is… Your initial gut response is go for the phone, go for the screen, “Let me get this dopamine hit.” But if you sit with it longer, I feel like you’ll start to feel like an addict who is resisting an urge, and you’ll really… You’ll keep looking at your phone, you’ll really wanna look at it, you’ll get this anxious feeling like, “Oh, just pick it up and look at it!” And it’s like, “Why? Why?” And man, it’s crazy how much it really is like an addiction.


0:27:46.1 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, it is, it is. I started looking at screen time again, recently. There’s something about when you do the first thing on the phone, let’s say there’s something I legitimately have to do. We have this podcast coming up in 15 minutes, I’m gonna jump on to text you like, “Hey, you ready?” or whatever, so I have a legitimate need to use this device. But my second move after taking that five-second action is going to be like who knows? Coinbase? Am I checking crypto? Am I going to Twitter? Am I seeing what’s going on there? Am I going to an app? Am I going to YouTube to watch the rest of a video I started? And I think that that second move is different on a phone, whether it’s based on personal habit or design, I’m not sure exactly which, but with a phone compared to a computer. So I’ve been doing a lot of texting from my computer just so that I don’t go to my phone because if it’s like, “Alright.” If I’m… After texting you, it’s like, “Oh, okay, well, I have to design two programs today and I’m here at my computer, I’m gonna do that.” More of what I have to do, more creativity, more work happens at my computer versus the pleasurable consumption of media.


0:29:06.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that makes total sense. I think it’s one of the reasons why I really… My favorite form of content has been podcasts because when I’m on a podcast, I’m not on my phone, and you are required to be present in the conversation. If you actually wanna be a great conversationalist, you have to be present; you can’t just be haphazardly listening. And I think it’s why it’s… You can’t pick up your phone, you can’t go check your messages, you can’t go look on Instagram, you can’t go do anything. Sort of the same thing that I’ve gotten with YouTube, where it’s like when I’m making a video, just being being able to… I’ll shoot the video, but while I’m shooting the video, it’s just it’s me and the camera, and I’m thinking… It’s like an art.


0:29:46.0 Mike Vacanti: Flow state.


0:29:46.8 Jordan Syatt: And yeah, and even editing it, as frustrating as it can be, it’s a work, it’s a process, I’m not checking other things, I’m in… I’m really focused on what I’m doing in that moment. It’s also the same thing with jiu-jitsu. I think the more things that I notice myself doing that have literally nothing to do with that cheap hit of immediate dopamine, things that allow you to spend… It’s shocker, the media outlets that get cheap dopamine hits over and over and over again versus doing something that takes a long… Like it’s rapid fat loss versus sustainable fat loss. It’s like the more content you can see… It’s why TikTok, it’s so addicting ’cause you just boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, reels, boom, boom, you get new, new, new, new, new, versus like, “You know what? I’m gonna focus on this one project for two to three hours, and that’s all I’m gonna look at.” Of course, you’re gonna get more bored, you’re not gonna get that cheap dopamine, but probably gonna be better off for it at the end of the day.


0:30:48.0 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.


0:30:48.6 Jordan Syatt: How many different conflicting messages can you take in and expect to be a sane human being? [chuckle]


0:30:54.1 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yup. To synthesize all that information to make sense of it.


0:30:58.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:31:00.9 Mike Vacanti: It’s too much. Everything you listed there, you were spot on with, what are we naming this? Pleasure Versus Presence because everything you listed there requires presence. Jiu-jitsu requires presence, I would imagine, based on my limited experience. [chuckle] Having a conversation with someone requires true presence to make it as good and meaningful as possible. Yeah, that’s spot on, that’s…


0:31:27.0 Jordan Syatt: Like writing an article, video editing, any of that stuff.


0:31:29.0 Mike Vacanti: Right, all of those things. I actually wrote a note in a journal the other day that was something to the effect of, “I definitely… ” Because I’ve had streaks of meditation in the past where I did well with it and noticed benefits. I realized that a significant portion of the benefit I got from meditation was simply that twice a day, for 20 minutes each session, I wasn’t looking at my phone.


0:31:57.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:31:57.5 Mike Vacanti: I mean I’m sure there were additional benefits on top of that, alone, but there was definitely a piece of it that was simply, “I’m not on my phone.” I get that with in-person training, too.


0:32:09.0 Jordan Syatt: Yes, 100%.


0:32:10.9 Mike Vacanti: When I don’t do any, I crave some because it’s there’s no phone, I’m focused, I’m focused on this other person, I’m helping them.


0:32:19.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:32:19.8 Mike Vacanti: Yeah.


0:32:20.6 Jordan Syatt: Looking at their repetitions, figuring out what you can correct. Even thinking on the spot, “Okay, that cue didn’t work for this person. What other cue can I give them?” It’s like the in-person interact… Yeah, there’s a lot to be said. And you can also see how, after 10 hours of doing that, how you’d be so drained. Being present for 10 hours, it’s like you don’t even have enough for yourself at the end of the day, so there has to be that balance, right?


0:32:44.7 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. The dude, the author of the book, said, it was either him or maybe a friend of his, said that one day, he was just laying in bed with the lights off, just decompressing from the day, and he was staring up at the ceiling, and just letting the thoughts run through his head. And his wife walked in the room and she freaked out. She was like, “Are you okay?” She thought he was having a stroke because why would he just be laying there without watching… The TV’s off, he doesn’t have his phone. What’s wrong? So like, “I was just, you know, laying here.”


0:33:20.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. And I was talking about this the other day, and I was like, “Remember when you were a kid and you just lay on a rug, and just like you’re on the carpet? And it’s like you just look at the strings on the carpet, or the threads of the carpet, and just could play with that for an hour,” when you’re a kid. You just let your imagination go and roll around and just do weird stuff when you’re a kid. But as you get older, and I think combined with the readiness and availability of distractions, it’s just easier and easier to lose that.


0:33:50.1 Jordan Syatt: It’s one of the things I noticed at jiu-jitsu; you would just get a bunch of… I’ll never forget, early on, I was in jiu-jitsu and I hadn’t really made friends yet, so I was just sitting by myself, just watching the other guys roll. And I’ll never forget being like, “These guys are… When was the last time I ever just hung out with a bunch of other guys?” And there are some women there as well, “But a bunch of other guys and just rolling around on the ground?” It’s like I was a kid and it’s just… I feel like it’s much more… When we talk about functional training, we could talk about functional living, which is just living… Making sure you’re doing things that we’re made to do a majority of the time, or trying to incorporate more of it, as opposed to sitting and looking at a screen, and just doing all the things that we’re definitely not made to do. [chuckle]


0:34:46.8 Mike Vacanti: Absolutely. And it’s hard to design your life in a way that facilitates that. And I think we should also make a… Differentiate in case it’s not already obvious, working with a device is different than consuming with a device, right?


0:35:05.3 Jordan Syatt: Correct.


0:35:06.1 Mike Vacanti: So when you’re sitting at your computer editing a video for two hours or writing a long-form article, whatever it is, that’s a fundamentally different… In every way than sitting there mindlessly consuming.


0:35:20.0 Jordan Syatt: You can’t create without being present. You can’t create something new, you can’t actively go out of your way to create something without being present. You can consume. And I would say that’s the difference. Creation is presence, consuming is pleasure.


0:35:37.6 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah.


0:35:38.5 Jordan Syatt: And there’s nothing wrong… It’s not inherently wrong to consume; I consume all the time. But when that takes up a massive part of your day, then you need to try and figure out that balance a little bit. And that’s what I’m struggling with right now, that’s what I’m working through, trying to, “Okay, alright, I feel… I literally feel my hand going to my phone. I know exactly where that Instagram app is. I feel it guiding there. I could open my phone and click it without opening my eyes.”


0:36:04.4 Mike Vacanti: Right now?


0:36:05.6 Jordan Syatt: No, no, not right now. And yeah, but I can feel it in general, so yeah.


0:36:12.2 Mike Vacanti: And how do you break that?


0:36:14.2 Jordan Syatt: Same way I’d probably…


0:36:16.0 Mike Vacanti: Add more of… Because your white-knuckling it seems… It seems like you have to intentionally add other things that you want to be doing, rather than simply work to resist this thing.


0:36:29.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I think it is the same way you would try to break any habit, and especially in regard to nutrition or fitness, whatever it is. It’s, without question, the basketball and the golf that I… The putting green that I’ve had have helped a lot. Any time I go there, I’m like, “No, I’m just gonna go… ” And I say, “I have to make 10 shots before I can go look at the Instagram.” Or, “I have to make… ” I’ll play horse with my fiancé with basketball or… We did it with golf last night. It was like, “I have to make X number of shots.” And golf was great last night ’cause it ended up being a 45-minute game of horse, which I did not expect, but it was great.


0:37:04.7 Mike Vacanti: Wow!


0:37:05.2 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, she’s really good, I was really surprised.


0:37:09.0 Mike Vacanti: Who won though?


0:37:10.4 Jordan Syatt: I won, I won, but she might win eventually based on how well she did. It was really incredible. But I think if you just try to remove a habit and don’t replace it with something else, you’re gonna have a hard time. So I think if you try to… If you want to remove a habit, you have to replace it with another habit that’s like you can do instead of it, because if there’s just empty space, of course you’re gonna go back to what you were doing before.


0:37:36.8 Mike Vacanti: I agree. That makes sense based on the couple of books I’ve read, and a lifetime of experience.


0:37:43.8 Jordan Syatt: And eventually you’ll associate that new habit with the a new emotion.


0:37:48.4 Mike Vacanti: We were talking about this a couple of weeks back, that you hypothesized, that the reason you can only change so many habits at the same time isn’t because you can’t comprehend all of the habit changes, but, that each habit change is associated with an emotion.


0:38:05.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, exactly, and if you try and change 12 different habits, you can logically understand all of them, but not have the legitimate emotional capacity, in order to do it, or even the energy… Mental energy, physical energy, emotional energy to do it. Whereas if it’s just one, and you focus on the emotion that you get as a result of changing that habit, well, now that might be powerful enough, and pure enough for you to really focus on it, and make that change. But if you have 12 different things to do, I don’t think any of them will be powerful enough, because, they’re competing with all the other ones at the same time.


0:38:42.4 Mike Vacanti: Yeah, yeah. Good stuff.


0:38:47.3 Jordan Syatt: Alright. Should we get into the questions, after 40 minutes?


0:38:50.9 Mike Vacanti: Let’s grab a question. [laughter] I mean, this is… Should we get into the questions? I’ll throw a question out, and we’ll just see what that sparks. Forward versus reverse lunges. [laughter] This can be rapid-fire too.


0:39:11.5 Jordan Syatt: Oh yeah, that’s a good idea. I would say reverse lunges, are the more beginner variation. They’re the one that you begin with, they’re the first progression that you try, before forward lunges. I would say, reverse lunges tend to be easier on your knees, there’s less anterior translation, and so, if someone has a knee injury, you would probably rather program reverse lunges, or even like a static lunge, or a Bulgarian split squat, where you’re not moving forward, as you go throughout it, because you don’t have to worry about that force transfer. So, yeah, I would say they’re both great. I think… I love forward lunges, for higher level athletes. I think it’s really, really important for athletes to learn how to decelerate, especially when they’re running, or sprinting, or juking, or they’re going side to side, which is why I think lateral lunges, forward lunges, walking lunges, are really, really important. But if I’m working with someone who’s overweight, they have a lot of extra, extra weight on them, they haven’t trained very much before the… I’m not gonna program forward lunges, or walking forward lunges, ’cause they are way too dangerous, if they’re not… If they haven’t built up the strength or the tolerance in their tendons and joints and ligaments.


0:40:25.5 Mike Vacanti: Just nailed it.


0:40:32.6 Jordan Syatt: I hear that siren. New York city.


0:40:34.2 Mike Vacanti: New York City sirens. Do you miss it?


0:40:36.9 Jordan Syatt: No, people keep asking, do I miss New York? I don’t.


0:40:40.0 Mike Vacanti: No, no, no, I meant… Do you miss the siren?


0:40:42.6 Jordan Syatt: Oh, definitely don’t miss the sirens. I think that’s one of the reasons why I’ve been sleeping better. It’s just because I don’t have that blaring through my window, and I don’t hear that… There’s no construction out of my window, there’s not… It’s like… Even just… You always talk about it, how it’s like there’s so many buildings, you just feel like they’re gonna fall down on top of you. Just…


0:41:02.1 Mike Vacanti: I stole that from Laird Hamilton, who’s a big wave surfer, and just… He’s like a king bro scientist. He’s not quoting evidence with any of these theories, but they’re just based on life, he’s real intuitive, and in touch with nature, he’s like, “Man isn’t supposed to live in those buildings, our body, our evolution, it knows that at any moment all these buildings could collapse. So our cortisol is constantly spiking.” And, there is truth in that, if you look at… I mean, you can look at research, where simply showing people images of nature, produces more… I don’t remember if it was more relaxed brain waves, I don’t… But there was some positive benefit to that. And living in a man-made City of Concrete, that has very, very minimal green in it, not the most optimal for that. Alright, I got a good one here. Why don’t we have a payment plan, or allow payment plans for the mentorship?


0:42:07.7 Jordan Syatt: You wanna take that, or me?


0:42:11.1 Mike Vacanti: I don’t know, if it’s something that you, and I have explicitly discussed. I know that I’m pretty firmly against payment plans, because, if you are in a place where you… And this is payment plans for essentially anything, other than food, or essential life things, but for a course, a group, to help you grow your business, or really for anything. If you’re in a place, where you don’t have any money, and you therefore need a payment plan, you need to take on debt, to buy something that isn’t a complete necessity, that’s a bad decision by you.


0:42:55.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah.


0:42:56.9 Mike Vacanti: And I’m sure, there are stories of someone, who is down to their last penny, and then they took out a loan, to get something they couldn’t afford, and that thing ended up really helping them, and they got like… Sure, one in a million exist. But as a general rule, do your very best to save money, and work hard to make money, to go from zero to 1000, to 2000, to 5000, and really build that initial savings, because that’s a cushion for life, that’s a cushion for emergencies, that’s a cushion for losing your job, that’s a cushion for… It’s essentially future freedom. If something goes awry, having some savings, and getting yourself off of, getting… I think of it like a boxing analogy, your back against the ropes, you are in the corner, and he’s just absolutely laying combos on you, like, get out of there, you get yourself in a safer position… Yeah, and so that’s why we don’t accept them in the mentorship is because, they’re fundamentally bad, for the individual who is taking on the payment plan, meaning they’re not bad for Jordan or I, we can bill it over the course of time, but it’s not a good idea for someone to take out debt when they are in that position.


0:44:14.9 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, and there’s a lot here as well I mean, there’s no question, that people who… And I’m not saying… Taking out a payment plan isn’t bad inherently, but if you look at the rate of people, who ask for a refund…


0:44:30.6 Mike Vacanti: I think it might be bad inherently, but keep going.


0:44:34.5 Jordan Syatt: If you look at people who tend to ask for a refund, you’ll get more people asking for a refund from the people who got a payment plan than the people who paid in full, and oftentimes, people who get a payment plan, will cancel. And this isn’t just like for this, this is for literally anything. They’ll cancel early on, because, they look at it as a way as like, “Well, I didn’t pay the full amount, so I only paid a small amount just to see if it was worth it.” And then they do it for a day or a week… It’s like, imagine if someone signed up for your fitness coaching, strength training, fat loss, whatever. You get ’em on a payment plan, ’cause, you wanna make it work for them, they do it for two weeks, they say, they didn’t lose as much weight, as they wanted to, so they quit, versus if they paid as much as they should have upfront, or did your normal plan, and you had the agreement like, “Hey listen, this is how it’s gonna work, da da da da… This is how long it’s gonna take to see progress,” that person is more likely to stick with it, because that’s what they signed up for, and what they agreed on. So, I think part of it, is a huge part of what Mike said, which is, it’s probably if you don’t have the money to pay in full right now, it’s not a good idea for you to sign up with us right now.


0:45:39.4 Mike Vacanti: Yes.


0:45:39.9 Jordan Syatt: That’s like, for sure. But also, for your own benefit, and your own coaching business, I’m not the biggest fan of payment plans in general, for also the purpose of, you want to get the clients, that are gonna be the most committed to you, and then the mentorship, the people that we have are so committed, it’s unbelievable. The amount of negative issues, that we’ve ever had in the mentorship is zero to none. It’s crazy.


0:46:06.0 Mike Vacanti: Crazy.


0:46:06.4 Jordan Syatt: And I think a large part of that is because, we’re not going out of our way to try to get as many people to sign up as possible. I think a lot of business owners will disguise payment plans as a way to make it seem like they’re doing something good for you, when in reality, in their mind, it’s like they’re just trying to get more money, period. And they say, “Listen, if we could get people, who shouldn’t be buying this,” but they can get them on a payment plan, great. No, no, no, we don’t want that. We only want the people who are ready, willing, and able to do it. And that means, that if you need a payment plan, you’re not ready, or able to do it. You might be willing, but you’re not ready, or able to yet, and you should take a month, three months, six months, whatever, or re-organize your finances currently, to figure out, “Okay, what can I spend less money on, in order to make this doable?”


0:46:51.7 Mike Vacanti: Great answer. And there’s something… We don’t need to go super deep on this, but I’ve noticed it in the mentorship, the depth of the relationships, and we’ll call it the quality, the bond in the community, which has been absolutely incredible. I’ve also noticed that shift in my coaching clients year over year over year over year, and this is what people who… If you’re just getting started, if you have one online coaching client, if you have zero online coaching clients, if you’re just getting started, years down the road, it becomes easier, because, as you have established yourself, and you don’t need to sell yourself as hard, you don’t need to rely on testimonials as much, you don’t need to do things to grab brand new audience, the audience that gravitates towards you, putting out content that you’re interested in, are going to be people that you want to coach more.


0:47:49.6 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yeah, that’s exactly right. It was a good question.


0:47:52.4 Mike Vacanti: It was a good question. Best childhood memory.


0:47:57.5 Jordan Syatt: Oof. What’s your’s? I have to think about it…


0:48:01.8 Mike Vacanti: I have no idea. We said we were gonna pee it up, and not have anything pre-planned, I don’t know how you do this for your entire life. I’ll share my first memory, was my fourth birthday. It was April 8th, 1991. It was like, a 90 degree day, in Minnesota, and we never had those at that time, and I just remember playing outside, and I had friends from pre-school there, I think, and… Yeah.


0:48:33.2 Jordan Syatt: That’s your best memory from childhood?


0:48:35.2 Mike Vacanti: Dude, It’s my first memory. All I remember, is there was a ball, that we were hitting around, and it was very sunny, and the grass was very green, and it was my birthday.


0:48:43.9 Jordan Syatt: That’s crazy.


0:48:46.4 Mike Vacanti: Give me your first memory.


0:48:47.1 Jordan Syatt: My first… And you’re not gonna believe this.


0:48:49.0 Mike Vacanti: No, I want it in detail, and I want…


0:48:50.7 Jordan Syatt: It’s not a detail, but I don’t think people are gonna believe this. My first memory… My mom doesn’t believe me, when I say this, but it is, I swear to God. My first memory is, you know when you’re born, and they put the baby in the scale, they take the baby… And it’s like… It’s like a bowl. They put a baby in a steel or aluminum bowl and they weigh you. I vividly remember being in the bowl, and I remember the tissue paper was pink, and that’s all I remember. All I remember is being put in the bowl, and that’s it. And I just remember the tissue paper was pink. That’s my first memory. It’s not my best memory, but it’s my first memory.




0:49:30.4 Mike Vacanti: You know how… Let’s say over the last 18 months, there have been times where you and I don’t agree on something that happened, and we’re like, “Wait, did this happen? Or did this happen?” And we’re not quite sure.


0:49:43.4 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. Yeah, yeah, yeah.


0:49:45.3 Mike Vacanti: And then, whose memory is usually…


0:49:48.3 Jordan Syatt: Yours. Yours is usually right.


0:49:51.0 Mike Vacanti: You remember…


0:49:52.3 Jordan Syatt: You weren’t there, when I was born.




0:49:54.2 Mike Vacanti: I don’t, but dude, I don’t think that’s physiologically possible.


0:49:58.6 Jordan Syatt: I’m telling you, I know for a fact. I vividly remember, being put in that bowl.


0:50:05.0 Mike Vacanti: You remember being born?


0:50:06.8 Jordan Syatt: No, no, no. I don’t remember, like…


0:50:07.9 Mike Vacanti: Essentially, essentially. That’s like how many minutes passed, between…


0:50:10.7 Jordan Syatt: I remember a flash of an instant, from the day I was born. For sure.


0:50:14.7 Mike Vacanti: You remember… You remember your birth.


0:50:17.3 Jordan Syatt: I remember a part of my birth. [laughter] Yeah, yeah, yeah, I remember being weighed. It isn’t funny, I mean, one of my most popular YouTube videos, is about weighing yourself. So, maybe it was just, part of that. I was born to help people develop a better relationship with the scale.


0:50:36.0 Mike Vacanti: This guy, this character.


0:50:37.3 Jordan Syatt: I get on the scale, and I’m like, “My weight doesn’t matter.”




0:50:44.4 Mike Vacanti: I would love an audience poll right now, an anonymous poll, on whether or not… I believe that you’re being honest. I do.


0:50:54.0 Jordan Syatt: Wow, that’s like when someone says like, “Listen, I’m sorry, you feel that way.”


0:50:58.7 Mike Vacanti: No, no, no, no, no, ’cause I don’t like that either. I didn’t mean it to come off that way.


0:51:05.2 Jordan Syatt: I’ve used that though. I’ve said that to people. I’ve said that, I’m sorry you feel that way.


0:51:06.2 Mike Vacanti: I’m surprised. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. Twist the knife a little bit. Yeah, of course.




0:51:12.4 Mike Vacanti: Alright, I… You know…


0:51:12.9 Jordan Syatt: I swear, I’m telling you man. I’ve got really good long-term memory. Short-term, no. Long-term, I do. I can remember stuff, weird stuff, weird things from a long time ago, but like that, for example.


0:51:27.6 Mike Vacanti: That is a weird thing, from a very long time ago. Cool.


0:51:30.8 Jordan Syatt: Yeah. So…


0:51:31.0 Mike Vacanti: Well, I’m gonna go get a haircut.


0:51:33.6 Jordan Syatt: That’s it, that’s the last question?


0:51:35.8 Mike Vacanti: That’s… Well, we have a whole list.


0:51:39.2 Jordan Syatt: Okay, alright.


0:51:40.7 Mike Vacanti: But that’s the last one, we’ll hit today. We’ll be back next week. That is very likely. We took a few weeks off, there was a lot going on, but…


0:51:48.0 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, I moved. There was a lot, and yeah, it’s been… And we’re gonna be doing a big thing, with the mentorship soon. We’re gonna do a big sale on that soon, so keep an eye and an ear out for that. And, yeah, we’ll be more consistent now just because I’m settled here.


0:52:04.1 Mike Vacanti: We want the presence of the hour conversation.


0:52:06.7 Jordan Syatt: Yeah, that’s right, that’s right. Thanks, Mike.


0:52:09.3 Mike Vacanti: I enjoyed this.


0:52:11.4 Jordan Syatt: I did too.


0:52:11.4 Mike Vacanti: Great chat.


0:52:12.8 Jordan Syatt: Love you, bro.

0:52:13.2 Mike Vacanti: Love you, bro. Everyone, we’ll see you next week.

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