Understood

Ep.1 | Strong personalities, signs from the universe, dealing with anger

July 06, 2020 Mitch Wallis
Understood
Ep.1 | Strong personalities, signs from the universe, dealing with anger
Chapters
Understood
Ep.1 | Strong personalities, signs from the universe, dealing with anger
Jul 06, 2020
Mitch Wallis

In this episode we cover:
- Why Mitch is starting a Podcast
- The relationship between Mitch & Heart On My Sleeve
- How to interact with Mitch on the podcast
- A discussion around: can two alpha personalities connect? The search for equality in relationships
- Mitch shares his struggles with needing control in all domains of life
- How to recognise a signpost in your life that is trying to tell you something
- How to balance a mindset of “f*ck the universe everything is out to get me” to “the universe has my back”
- The #1 way to recognise depression in someone and how it can mask as a different emotion
- Mitch encourages people to not use mental ill health as an excuse to not take action

The phone number for the hotline is +61419689311

Show Notes Transcript

In this episode we cover:
- Why Mitch is starting a Podcast
- The relationship between Mitch & Heart On My Sleeve
- How to interact with Mitch on the podcast
- A discussion around: can two alpha personalities connect? The search for equality in relationships
- Mitch shares his struggles with needing control in all domains of life
- How to recognise a signpost in your life that is trying to tell you something
- How to balance a mindset of “f*ck the universe everything is out to get me” to “the universe has my back”
- The #1 way to recognise depression in someone and how it can mask as a different emotion
- Mitch encourages people to not use mental ill health as an excuse to not take action

The phone number for the hotline is +61419689311

Damn, man, I'm just so excited to be doing this. Alright, welcome to the first episode of my podcast. It's been a, I've been thinking about doing this for a long time. I was trying to for the last two years since my life changed quite literally overnight. Think about when, by the way that life changes because I released a video on Facebook that ended up going viral of my story and my experience with my mental health. And at the end of that video, I drew a heart on my arm, which is now a tattoo. And I said, if this helps one person feel understood, then all my pain has been worth it. And to my absolute delight, that started a global movement where people all around the world started drawing and tattooing hearts in their arms and coming forward and telling their story. And as a guy who thought his life was technology, you know, I'm a corporate dude, Microsoft seven years, etc. I never thought that I'd actually truly get to live my dream, which is psychology. But my real dream was to live a life of at very minimum peace, mindset where I could actually enjoy things that would happen in my life and have some type of sustainability and a level of enjoyment and meaning and purpose. That was my real dream, I mean, heart on my sleeve has been the biggest cherry on top ever. But to get to a headspace where my mental health is steady, is just under, it's kind of hard to put into words how amazing that is. But over the last two years, it's been a journey of really growing that and seeing how I can develop that into being a meaningful organisation that does good stuff, and actually contributes to the world to make it a better place. And in that same time, I was, I've always been looking at what's my relationship to heart on my sleeve. And at the start, there were one thing you know, it was literally my demons, incarnate, like it was the embodiment of all of my pain. And so I find it I found it really hard to separate myself from heart on my sleeve, and it took and it's still developing, where I'm like, Well, what is it? And what's his mission? What's the purpose, what's my relationship to it. And now, we're pretty clear about that, you know, it's, first and foremost, a movement where people can share stories and receive stories so that they can be inspired to seek help and change their own narrative. And as you know, out of that, now comes these incredibly comprehensive programmes that I'm super proud that we've developed, including online training courses around how to share your story, how to seek help, we run corporate workshops, to help leaders change their internal culture at some very large organisations, we run staff training, and probably the one I'm most proud of is a programme called real mates, which is a peer support training, that I'm trying to scale to be the largest piece of support outside of a system in the world for sharing emotions and supporting each other through pain. But what's cool is that I now have a better idea and where I sit in that, and I see myself as the person who shared the first story on heart on my sleeve. And now it's everyone else's movement. I am purely, you know, I run it, I'm the CEO of it, and there's a big team around me. But it is everyone else's. And I want it to be a platform to bring from beneath the surface, all these amazing experiences that people go through. And I'm purely a curator, or a custodian or an observer of that. And it's a really long winded way of saying, This podcast is about starting to enable me to have other areas to express myself where it's just me Mitch, as a person who I can build my own identity and not lose myself in heart on my sleeve, which is supposed to be in bad everyone else. This is about my self expression. And a place where I can get off my chest, all of the billions of thoughts that go through my head on a weekly basis around me and who I am and my own healing and concepts that I think a lot about and have the privilege to be able to talk to a lot of experts around the world on to try and consolidate some of that and then feed it back. Through through this and other mediums. It's also for me a way this podcast to answer and discuss at scale. A lot of the things that come toward me, you know, again, I have the immense privilege of being dm on Instagram or Facebook or email, or people who come up to me after I speak and say, you know, hey, what's your thoughts on or I need help with? Or? Here's a comment or my opinion on this. And I and I have these really amazing one on one interactions with people in house like far out, how do I, how do I take these discussions or conversations and put them at scale, which is really the purpose of what this is supposed to be, is supposed to be, you know, a lot of podcasts and things like that, or conversations between two people that the listener listens into. Whereas I want to reverse that. And I want to have a conversation with you, the listeners. And the way that you can do that is by texting me on this number that I've got, oh, 419689311. Or better yet, call and leave a voicemail. Ideally, start with your name and where you're from, and then tell me what question you have. Or it doesn't need to be a question, it could be a comment that you want me to explore and discuss. And I'm really excited about this. I've seen this format being done in a couple of other industries, like comedy, and I just think it's such a more engaging way than necessarily just to listen to two people speak. Why not be part of that, too? And, yeah, I mean, this is it, this is the first chance the first try, and I really hope it, it provides value. But the good thing is that regardless of anyone who even listens to it, or actually gets help from it, I will, it'll be therapy for me. It will be amazing to be able to just get this shit out in the world, all the things that I think of, and have a place to put it. So if your eardrum right now is one of those places. Thank you. It feels awesome. So, yeah, on a on a weekly basis, I plan to do them weekly, I'll be unpacking a whole range of different concepts and theories and questions, whatever. And as I said, that number once more is Oh 419689311. For any international friends just put a plus six one before it's a plus 61419689311. And just FYI, with that number, I'm not gonna be texting back and forth, I'm not going to be answering the call, it goes straight to a voicemail. So it's more of a repository than anything because I have to protect my own mental health. I would love to get into numerous one on one discussions with with everyone, but I just can't. So hopefully this is a way of being able to connect whilst doing it in the context of boundaries. So your most most episodes will follow a format basically, where I just talk about my thoughts in the wake of things that have happened to me and things that have been on my mind. And then we'll spend the rest of it unpacking questions from other people and comments from other people. And I'll actually play them or read them out on those episodes. Now, there's three things I want to discuss today to kick it off. And the first is one that I actually haven't fully thought through yet, I don't have a strong opinion on. And it's this concept of when two alphas come together to strong personalities. And it's got me to thinking this because I recently dated someone, a girl who had a really strong personality, and I think I do too. I don't class myself as an alpha, nor do I define it of anyone, as someone who like, beats the chest and has disregard for people. And you know, it's lots of steak and all that shit. I look at an alpha as someone who is more and more feels more comfortable in controlling, like when they have control over their environment, not controlling other people, but that can be a byproduct, unfortunately, they like to be in a dominating position. You know, if someone falls over on the side of the road, you go toward that as opposed to away from it. Now, that's not necessarily a positive thing, although there are a lot of psychologists who I very much respect to say that developing alpha qualities is actually really healthy for our mental health and is a good thing. For the way we operate in society and things like that, obviously, like anything, a gift can be a curse if it's left unchecked, because it can lead to narcissism and a whole bunch of other stuff. But I quite like my, the dominant side of my personality, a lot of what I do is very feminine energy based, you know, it's a lot of feeling and emotions and things like that. And I actually have a tattooed on my left arm, which is an elephant, which means a few things, but not least of which respects my feminine side. And that softness in that compassion. And then I have a lion on the other side, which represents more of that alpha, go getter, dominant. And so I have them side by side to represent a balance of the two, to try and know when to flex different muscles. But getting back to my point around alphas, you know, I'm really interested in how to two alphas Connect, or how, even if we remove that word had two strong personalities Connect, when they're both fighting for dominance. And mean, this girl, girl and I, she's such an amazing person. And we would just not be able to get our power dance, right. And I was in Bali the other week, and just like the universe does, delivers you answers, or at least little tidbits along the way to help you with things that are going on in your life. And this girl was saying, girl I met in Bali, she's saying, you know, my husband and I are always in his power dance. And I'm like, Oh, my ears pricked up. I'm like, I'm trying to explore this at the moment. And she said, in order to make it work, we have to get really good at the give and take of submission. And that's not necessarily a sexual thing. It could be but it's more, I think, for alphas to click and connect sustainably, they have to be willing to forego that dominant position without thinking they've lost with just knowing that this is a dance that everyone plays, and it's heightened, when you have two strong personalities dancing together. And I think you know, looking back on it, what happened between me and the partner that I was dating for a while was that we weren't very good at letting the other at submitting at letting that other person have the win, then you have to win, even though it's actually no one wins. You let that person have take the lead. Take the lead of the salsa, I guess. And that's a beautiful metaphor, because no one in that position is winning. You know, no one in that saucer is winning and losing, you're just someone leading and someone's following. And yeah, I think that we would both want to lead so much, we ended up just like permanently treading on each other's toes that we would come close together, we would hold each other's hand. This is continuing the metaphor, by the way, I speak a lot in this shoot. So you probably lose you at some point. And then we would start this and the music was dark, we would go go go. And we'd have these moments of ecstasy and just complete Nutter alignment connection. And then I think both of us just were like, Wait a second, I want to lead and then we would just turn on each other's toes, and we would disconnect. And that made me upset. And I was like God, I don't know what to do here. And as I thought about it more, I do struggle to connect with other strong personalities. Because I want to I want to control Not that I think I'm better than them by any means. But it's more my lust for control. And it's interesting because like, I think that I'm a pretty understanding and empathetic person as in a lot of the work that I do is is actually holding in an incredibly soft space. And I think for a guy I'm pretty good at holding soft, gentle, welcoming, warm places for people who need that. But if I reflect on it with honesty, I'm it's easier to do that for me when I don't feel like the person I'm holding it for is trying to take power away. And so, I don't know the last few days I was like, this is a really good way to start. The podcast is just talking about things without necessarily saying I have all the answers because that's definitely not the point of this. I'll be learning from you way more than the other way around. But just to like, talk about it, because I'm sure there's other people going through this. And yeah, if I look back in my life I do have I do struggle with connecting well while connecting sustainably with other strong personalities because I end up in a tug of war with them. And I get to ffensive, when they pull really hard, I go, Well, I'm going to tug and push against you just as much in order to meet you there. Because I want to be equals. And when I feel that person pushing or pulling, I'm like, Hey, I don't need to be better than you by any means I just need to be equal to you. So I think maybe that's, that's my trouble is that I don't want someone to dominate me. Or think they're better than me. I just want us to be equal. And when a strong personality comes in, I feel that power switch. I push back just as hard, if not harder to get that sense of equality back. Maybe, I don't know. But what I do know is that when reflecting back on what this girl said to me, in Bali, I was like, Yeah, I think the only way to make an alpha to alpha or strong personality to strong personality, relationship work, is if both are willing to submit, or at least follow, not always lead in this in this power dance. And I'm a big believer in not trying to change other people, or you can only control yourself. And so I've kind of made a commitment to work on even if that other person doesn't submit or doesn't. Let me lead, I will let them lead. So at bare minimum, that takes tension and give space back to the relationship in moments of friction. And I think that's gonna be a big step forward, it might not be the whole answer, because I think for a dance to truly work, you need to be able to give and take that. So that so it can't just be one person submitting all the time or giving or giving it back. It needs to be both. But I can almost guarantee that, even if both of us don't learn how to do that dance, if one of us, which I can take accountability for learned how to take a step back, hand over the reins in moments and be and follow their lead. Things will get along better than both of us just fighting for that power. So yeah, that's gonna be a hard pill to swallow as someone who who does want to control everything. And my instinct is to just be like, type not know, like, I want to invite you for that. But I think it's gonna be a really healthy thing for me, in romantic relationships in non romantic relationships and more to practice, swallowing my want to voice my opinion on everything, or whatever. And just to let it go, and to let it flow. And to let those moments I think there's a little bit of OCD me there, which is like, with every fracture, I want to repair it. And I would say that, yeah, there's good intent behind all this for sure. But the you know, there's a fracture, there's a repair. So like, if there is a fracture, or they say something that I don't agree with, or there's something that doesn't sit right with me, I want to bring it up and discuss it in a nice manner, of course. But I think sometimes I need to let more shit go and just let the river keep flowing. Even though I'm just like, ah, I fundamentally disagree with that this can do my fucking head in. Or I'm like, you're being hypocritical or whatever, I'm just what works better is just going like, doesn't matter. Let it go. And if it builds into a theme, we can address the theme when it comes up. But otherwise, let it go. And that's a healthy practice in general. But I think when two strong personalities come together, that given take of power and control is hyper important. Maybe I'm being hard on myself, because there's a lot of strong personalities in my life that I get along with really well under my closest circle. And they might think that I'm actually okay with this. But I do want to always improve. And so that is something that has been top of mind for me recently, and I hope I get better at it. And I hope that I learn how to do it without thinking that I'm missing something or I'm giving part of me up I'm actually taking a part of me back by not thinking it's win and lose. Also my neighbour is making some type of food next door and she's looking through the blinds and seeing me with all these fucking podcast equipment in my apartment and staring down the barrel of a camera and talking No one. So hopefully, she knows that I run a mental health thing and that I'm embracing my crazy because I am bad shit. So even more so right now. All right. Another thing I wanted to talk about today was the concept of things that happen during the day that helped us understand where we're at if we pay attention to them. So basically signposts now, I'm a big believer in this like signposts and the universe trying to send us messages. Now, if you if you hook on to that too much, you can like literally drive you crazy, because you can be caught up in, you know, you might walk past in a number plate, and it might say, like, Amy on the number plate, and you're like, holy shit, that's a sign from the universe that I need to call Amy. And I was right that, you know, Amy is loving my life. And that can get almost borderline delusional, if you think that every single thing that happens in your day is a signpost to something great. But on the other hand, I also think that the complete exclusion of that, or the the ignoring that nothing is trying to talk to us. That mentality is also completely underutilizing. Life and not paying attention to things that are actually trying to help us. And so I think having an awareness of and a moderate attention to things that happen in the day that might be leading us and giving us information about where we need to be, I guess, if you boil it down, it's the same concept is everything happens for a reason. But moving beyond just the big moments into the more little moments. And for example, three days ago, I was coming home, and I was thinking about something that I really wanted, like this goal that I have, and I'm like, why haven't I got it yet. And I was just like, so frustrated at the fact that I hadn't got the outcome that I needed. And just before I got into my apartment, there was this flower bed, and the flowers are pretty high, it's probably like a chest height. And as I walk past, the flower just looks so beautiful, in its soft, pure form. And I went to touch it because I wanted to, like, connect with that beauty or that essence. And as I touched it, I realised how fragile it was. And that my wound was just to like, you know, pick it off, or at least grab it because I just wanted to, I wanted it so much. And then I was like, wow, just, you know, any type of clinging toward this, and I'm gonna break it, I'm gonna break this entire beauty. I'm gonna snap it off at Stan and it's gonna die. And for me, thankfully, I had enough awareness in that moment to be like, Whoa, I was literally just thinking about how much I wanted that goal. And that flower just taught me that the more I try and hold on to it, I destroy its beauty, I destroy its essence actually get further away from it. And I cut off any chance of that actually fertilising and thriving, coming true. And I just thought that was a really nice moment of like, the universe when we listen to it is permanently trying to speak to us. And if we can just stop for a second to pay attention. There's so many things trying to help us, you know, and it's a great way to like not feel alone. And I think when we're depressed, we feel like there's a lack of options. But when we look at the universe is almost like someone in our support network who's on our side, not just the friends, family, Doctor, psychologist, blah, blah, blah. But as a bit as a bit as a almost like a person who is trying to always guide us in the right direction. It's a really great thing now, have there been moments where I'm like, Fuck the universe, they, no one has my back. There's no such thing as God. This is all made up bullshit. It's in my head. And if anything, if there was a god, he's actually trying to like hurt me because no motherfucker would let this shit happen to anyone that I'm feeling right now. So I mean, if you felt that I'm right there with you, it's very natural to feel that as well. For me, it's in those moments that I just now remind myself, I haven't given enough time my data set that I'm looking at too small. And so it looks like this up, down, up, down, you know, things are going bad, bad, bad. But on a longer data set as I elongate the period of which I'm looking back on. Generally, I see a curve that is something's in my favour that the curve is, is going up in a trajectory of Wow, yeah, I had some setbacks. But ultimately, I think there is someone looking at me in the long term and in the macro. So yeah, I think there is something that God looking after all of us. I like to believe that for sure, because the opposite is depressing as fuck. And there are tiny little moments in our life. If we just pause. It's like, well, what am I trying What is someone trying to tell me right now? What can I learn from this moment. And it's not just the big moments, some little moments like that, where if you just pay attention to what you're thinking and what's actually happening in the experience, some kind of beautiful also, that could be a complete load of shit. And none of that meant anything other than I was going to destroy a flower. So take from that what you will. Next up on the agenda is I wanted to talk about depression. You'll notice someone with depression, be irritable, and angry, faster, harder, louder sooner than you'll notice them be sad when it comes to depression. Now, the ironic part of that is, is that we think that when people are depressed, it's just this permanent melancholy. And, you know, like, it's insula, that it's just about you. But often the depression is projected out with so much in anger. And now, how hard is it to help someone who's being a dick. But yet that person who's being a dick sometimes needs our help the most. So this, to me is a concept that I've I talk a lot about in our trainings around. If we all if we become aware of the fact that often, when we're feeling pain, we can't hold all of it internally, we spray it out and spew it out on other people, and making everyone else's problem. Even if we know that as a supporter, when that comes at us, we can take a step back and be like, this probably has nothing to do with me. Because often anger is just sadness, expressed irresponsibly. And it doesn't mean that we become someone's punching bag. It's like, they're upset. And so I'm just gonna, like, take all this shit and just get hit with all these terrible things. It's like it's an excuse for someone being horrible. No, not at all. But what it does mean is that the moment someone, someone comes at you with something that doesn't feel nice, or that you get hit with something that we don't straightaway, just go, you know, that about me, I'm taking that personally, and like I'm opting out of this relationship, but I don't want to help you. versus having the maturity and self awareness and understanding to say, you know, what, that probably has nothing to do with me. And I understand right now you're in a lot of pain. It just helps. I reckon, it just helps to know that a lot of the times when people are nasty to us, it has nothing to do with us. It is just their pain being expressed that way. And it's not an excuse for their pain whatsoever. It's just context that might be able to allow us to hang in there a little bit longer with someone knowing that they're not trying to offend us. All their support structures are decaying and falling away, because no one has the patience to see through that pain. And it just kept, it's being taken as bullets, but really, it's not like that at all. They they hope and they wish that someone can hold space for that anger. And when you just let it soften, and when you let that ice that hard ice actually start to melt away a little bit. Under that is an incredibly child black goo and water that just want so badly to be hugged. And to be told it's gonna be okay. And they're not alone. Yeah, anger is is just a sign of our insecurities that we don't know how to deal with until we make it everyone else's problem. But underneath all that anger is just and it's sadness. And so I say all this not because I think anyone should give someone scot free break if get off scot free scot free break who the fox got, I don't know. You shouldn't just let someone be terrible toward you without protecting yourself or putting up boundaries, that's for sure. But knowing that there are more layers to what's going on and what they're doing, other than trying to hurt you. And that could be sadness might allow you to just hang in there a little bit longer, to actually give them an ear or a shoulder to get what's really happening out on the table. And that's when the true work begins. That's when the connection happens. So, yeah, there's probably people right now listening to this and being like, Fuck, you know, I hate the fact that I'm irritable and I treat other people like this. And if only they knew it wasn't, then it was me but often We don't have the I mean, it's so hard to say that someone you know, it's not me. It's not you, it's me and like, we're already in so much pain, that our ego won't let us admit that we are being a bad person. So we deny that as well, from ourselves and from others. So it is like vicious cycle and cycle and cycle that the people you love, you're already hurting. Because your path, your sadness is coming out as anger. And then you want to like repair that and make that ride and let them know that that's not the case. It's just the way you're feeling. And for them to not take it personally. But then your ego won't let you do that. Because then that's like admitting defeat. And so then it hurts even more, it helps you even more, it hurts them even more unbelievable. I mean, the antidote to that, in my opinion, is just to accept where you are without judgement, knowing that other people are going through it, to let it go, and to invest in what's right versus what feels good. You know, what's right is to go and apologise to someone when you're being nice. Even if your ego says don't, it's right to go to therapy. When you're like, Nah, I don't need that. And the crazy people have that or you know, it's too expensive, or the myriad of excuses that come up, as opposed to just, yeah, maybe I'll give this a try. If not, for myself, for someone else, like doing work on ourselves. And like working through our own stuff, is actually the biggest gift you can give to anyone else. If you're just being like, a shithead, to everyone, even if you don't care about yourself enough to go and get help do it for them. Because you're not actually a shithead you're not actually horrible and angry. You just have forgotten how to act in any other way. Because you've been in pain for so long. That's not an excuse. It's not good enough, though. Like, I get it, we get it. I've been there. You don't need to feel bad about it. But just don't use it as an excuse to not do more. to not get better, you know, go put that shoulder back in its place. Go put that mind back in its place. Go Go find what sits on the other side of this familiar pain that you're using to give yourself identity now and safety. Ironically, this pain that is giving you a sense of meaning and purpose, it doesn't need to. There's an identity beyond that, that you can reclaim if you're ready to go through the work, and heal so that you don't hurt anyone else. Anyway, that's my ramblings for the first episode. Those three What do we cover? We covered the Battle of power between alphas. We covered the universe trying to tell us stuff with signs and we covered how anger is usually more common in depression and sadness. And I didn't overview of what I want this podcast to be. I mean, that's pretty good first episode. I feel like I and my neighbour had had a gaze over here freaked her out so ticking all the boxes in my mind. I'm really pumped for this. If If anyone has actually listened to this, thank you. I want to go on a journey with you. And yeah, as my favourite comedian Chris Talia says life riffs baby. Let It Rip. And I'll see you soon.