030: Joel Runyon, conversation 2: Almost too easy, full transcript

February 26, 2018 by Joshua
in Podcast

Joel Runyon

Listen to the conversation.

Joel took on a double challenge of avoiding bottled beverages, also picking up trash, so it’s interesting that he did both. He and I talked a bunch about where litter comes from. When was the last time that you littered? Where does it come from? He and I speculated. Write me if you have ideas because I find it very confusing. It says that we don’t value stuff. We act like giving stuff away is luxury or nice or something like that, when we go to the supermarket and they give you a bag, that they’re doing something for you. But that’s why we give it away that we don’t value it. How many things do we have that for five seconds they’re shiny or make us laugh or smile and then for the next 1000 years they’re in a landfill? It seems to me that acquiring stuff, the bags, the disposable things and so on that that leads to garbage, which is waste which hurts other people who have to live with that. So let’s listen to what Joel comes up with but I hope people also realize that acquiring the stuff in the first place is where the stuff comes from and that that’s a place where we can act is to stop acquiring the stuff in the first place.


Joshua: Hey, how are you doing?

Joel: I’m good. How are you?

Joshua: I’m good. Are you still in New York City?

Joel: I am in San Diego right now.

Joshua: Okay, so it is probably warmer here than it is there which is highly unusual.

Joel: What’s the temperature like out there?

Joshua: It’s close to 90.

Joel: Oh, wow!

Joshua: Yeah. It was like a mild summer when you were here and now you know, when I was a kid and like in the winter if you had a warm day you’re like, “Oh, great. It’s a warm day, it’s more comfortable” and now you’re like, “Oh, this could be the end of the world.”

Joel: Well, usually it’s August, that’s like miserable. August this year was pretty, pretty mild. I was like, “Oh, this is bad.” That’s like 70-77 in San Diego right now I think it’s kind of always 77.

Joshua: Actually, I’m going to say this at the risk of getting the two of us started on what we talked about a lot last time, but today’s a cold shower day. So actually a cold shower, I mean hot days aren’t so bad, although I don’t know how regularly you do it but I… Oh, crap. You know I’m getting into… All right, I hope I can just keep it to one thing about it. Today was a busy morning and so I…Wait a minute, I take it back, today is not a cold shower day. Today is a weightlifting day. And what I was going to say, like I didn’t have time to lift this morning. And so I have to you know, there’s no question I’m going to do it, I just have to move things around to make it, you know, later in the day.

Joel: My biggest complaint with San Diego is cold showers are kind of weak. You can’t actually get a real cold shower, you get a lukewarm shower sometimes. But I think that’s almost harder sometimes than an actual cold shower because cold showers are refreshing and like here you’re like, it’s not really warm, like you kind of don’t know what your expectations are, it’s not warm, it’s not nice like, it’s kind of weird.

Joshua: You’re spoiled by Antarctica.

Joel: After that like it’s just hard to get colder.

Joshua: Yeah, actually, yeah. It’s like kind of neat to, I have a blog post that says, the title is: “Is it the hardest thing you’ve ever done?” and if something you’re doing is hard but it’s not the hardest thing you’ve ever done, you’ve done something harder. So you can do this.

Joel: It’s funny, I like that.

Joshua: So okay, so let’s get back to motivation because it’s so easy, people don’t get it I don’t get it but it’s so… Anyway, it’s a cool thing to do. So last I spoke to you, you took on a challenge of not, let me see if I remember right. It was, you were not going to have any bottled beverages?

Joel: Yes.

Joshua: And I think you were also going to pick up trash. I’m not sure if you committed to both or if it was like, maybe one of both?

Joel: Yeah, it was both. It was pick up couple of pieces of trash every day and then the bottled beverages. And you want to jump right into?

Joshua: Yeah. And I’m also curious, did you do it by yourself or did you get Jenny to do it again?

Joel: No, it was just me.

Joshua: Okay.

Joel: So bottled beverages was pretty easy actually. I thought that was pretty straightforward, I made a lot more tea. I got like a big container so I can make much of ice tea at once. And that’s basically like, it was funny how like just having some sort of constraint. I talked with my girlfriend every once in a while that like, in some ways we always have too much freedom like it’s almost too easy to do like something lazily and so like if you just have to like artificial constraint on that like, “Okay, I’m not going to get a bottled beverage today or this week.” You have to run around it and then it’s immediately, “Okay, I’ll just get a big container, I’ll make my own stuff and kind of like it better and it’s probably got less crap in it too” and it turned out pretty well. So I was pretty happy about that and that was kind of, I think of it in general, I think actually being in San Diego versus New York, I buy less bottled beverages because it’s just… There’s less bodegas just down the street where you can just like, “Oh, sure. I’ll grab something.” And San Diego, you’re going to have to make a trip to go get it so in some ways that’s better out here.

And then the trash, it was interesting because it’s actually a little bit, it’s a little bit tougher to do that not because I had some sort of resistance picking up trash but a lot of the places where I was just like out and about in San Diego is like relatively clear than some parts of New York. And so there are definitely areas like when I’m walking down main street or downtown that you know, I’d see stuff and I’d pick it up and it’s not a big deal. And it’s a little bit, I don’t know, I’m still confused that people still litter. Like, that’s still a thing?

Joshua: How does it happen? Like could you imagine? When was the last time you littered?

Joel: I don’t know. I think the closest I’ve gotten is like I throw something at a garbage can indoors and like it bounced off and then like I waited like 15 minutes whatever and then I went and put it in or something like that. Outside maybe like spat out gum or something like that, but I don’t know.

Joshua: I know I littered when I was a little kid but that was a long, long time ago, that was like the 70s.

Joel: Yeah. I just don’t like, I’ll keep it on me or like I’ll maybe put it in my car, I don’t know. I’ve thrown like apples and fruit out the car window where I’m like on a highway and it’s going to, you know it’s going to decompose but…

Joshua: Let me guess: you made sure mentally that it was going to land in the grass, right?

Joel: Yeah, like you’re throwing it in the field.

Joshua: You won’t throw it in a tunnel or something.

Joel: Yeah. You’re throwing it into a field somewhere like in a rural area. I don’t know, I think the closest thing I’ve got to do is like maybe I try to put in a garbage can and like [unintelligible] out or you know but it’s like at least in a general it’s, you know, when garbage cans are filled up that you like put it on top. I don’t know, it was the weird thing. I think I picked up more trash in parks than I did necessarily kind of on the main street because there are at least garbage cans downtown and on some of the main streets where people are walking. So I was pleasantly surprised that there wasn’t that much junk for me to pick up and I did pick up some stuff you know, on some of the main streets. But it was interesting that there wasn’t as much, it was a little bit, I had to work on finding the trash to pick up which is I guess a good thing but it’s still in some parks and it bothers me the way that people just you know, it’s like the nicest area of town and you just you know, checking something it’s like doesn’t make sense.

Joshua: Yeah, when I was at the farm where I get my vegetables from, there was litter and I got to believe that that’s blown there from somewhere else. But this is pretty far from the road. I can’t imagine a farmer littering in his or her own field.

Joel: I feel like a lot, and I don’t know maybe this is me being biased or something but it’s got to be, it’s got to be like a trash bin and like the wind came and blew away a bottle or something like that. I can’t, I don’t know.

Joshua: Yeah, I could see that in a remote area in New York. It’s definitely… Like that would be, there’s definitely that but there’s a lot of just trash on the ground and the way I’ve been putting it lately…

Joel: I haven’t drunk like a bottle of something or like eating something and then just like literally throwing it on the ground like, I don’t know what I would do if I saw someone doing that, I would be just like, “Really?! Really?!”

Joshua: Yeah.

Joel: That’d be amazing, almost.

Joshua: The way I’ve put it lately is that, when Trump got elected, I didn’t vote for him and I couldn’t imagine myself voting for him. But I was really curious if people did. Tens of millions of people did. So, I teach empathy and I try to put myself in a mindset where I could understand that we’re you know, that’s empathy. I don’t really like it but I can do it, I mean to put myself in the mindset where I’m like, “Go Trump.” But it’s really, it’s much harder for me to get to a mindset where I’m just like dropping litter on the ground. It’s easier for me to see why someone voted for Trump than someone would litter on the ground, I mean…

Joel: There’s just like, I was reading something about Walt Disney World recently about how he manufactured, like basically read a bunch of things about behavioral stuff and made it easy for people to basically do the behaviors that he wanted it and so that’s why they have like a trash can every 30 feet in Walt Disney World or something, where it’s actually harder to litter than it is to do the right thing. And so, actually you know, since we are talking about littering, it’s probably when I was traveling and that’s when I saw internationally like, there are countries people litter quite a bit. So that’s probably the last time I saw someone litter. Yeah, it’s kind of a weird thing and it was kind of nice to…San Diego has got a little bit of a homeless problem so in some homeless areas there tends to be just more trash but it’s kind of just an overall you know, some of it is trash, some of it could be people’s stuff. So it’s a mix of things and it’s hard to always tell what’s what.

Joshua: I love the simplicity of how you began it. Well, the task was not to get any bottled stuff so I made some tea. Problem solved. Actually I think there are a lot of problems that are that easily solved if people actually do it. I mean, I guess if you haven’t made tea in a long time it might be a little bit of a chore. Just like if you haven’t taken the bus in a long time and you’re used to taking a taxi or driving or whatever then it might be a bit of a chore.

Joel: I’ve got a bunch of tea that I had to finish up too, so it’s like a good excuse for me to do it, I wasn’t that mad about it. Yeah, the biggest thing is, it actually saves me time because I can make like a liter of tea, you know I can get a liter container you know, put a bunch of water in it and make the tea all at once and then you know, I’ve got that for you know, it’s multiple bottles of you know, whatever thing you want to drink, so you know, that’d be 7.50 or you know, ten dollars worth of beverages in New York and you know, just a bunch of tea leaves and you’re good to go.

Joshua: So do you plan on making this long term?

Joel: Well I’m drinking a lot less, I’m buying a lot less bottled stuff already and I think, to be honest part of it’s challenge, part of it’s just being out of New York because it’s a little easier, you have a little bit more space, you can throw something, you can throw ice tea in your fridge and you’ve got a space for it. But yeah, I’ve been drinking, I’ve been making, I’ve been on like a tea frenzy lately so maybe that’s just like my new substitution and it turns out a lot less junk and a lot less sugar and you know, everything else and the other beverages anyways.

So I like that and then being proactive about the picking up stuff especially in parks. Then I noticed, I think we talked about on the last podcast when you are doing ultra-trail stuff you know, there are days where some of the runners will just go out on the trails and pick up stuff and that’s one thing that, especially in parks. In the city areas you know, you can pick up stuff I think there tends to be less, there’s less littering in general and then when it does happen it gets picked up quicker, which is nice. But I just have a much bigger sympathy for the parks and the green spaces because I think after coming out of New York and New York is a place where you have to really try to find those green spaces and you know those kind of refugees from the city, the places that kind of have it easily, it’s like you want those to be nice and you want to be able to enjoy them and there are garbage cans like 20 feet away, so take care of it and you know usually it’s like a Gatorade bottle or something like that and it’s just surprising that it still happens. You know, I guess that was the thing I was like, “Okay, I guess I’ll pick up littering” and then I just kind of noticed it more and then I’m like, “Really, people? Really?”

Joshua: Well, okay. So I mean I feel like you’re talking, you’re touching on more than just the litter on the ground, that there is something like our values here, something about intent or something. Or are you thinking differently about people or are you connecting on something more meaningful than picking up trash?

Joel: I guess, I mean the question, I just don’t know what goes through someone’s head when they just like drop something like. I can understand if they drop something or blows away from them or you know something like that happens and like the wind blows it away fast and you can chase after it. Okay, that has happened to me maybe a couple of times, it’s annoying but it happens. I guess I just never… Like a couple of times I picked up stuff and it was probably, the end of the city block in San Diego is, blocks out here are way smaller than blocks in New York and you would have you know just a couple pieces of trash like in the middle of the block and there’s a trash can at the end of the block. And there’s a couple times I just remember all walking by and [unintelligible], “You couldn’t make the last 12 feet?”

So I don’t know. I mean there’s a couple of extenuating circumstances, like you said there’s a bunch of homelessness out her so maybe that’s one thing and maybe there’s specific situations for different people but it is one of those basic things that, coming back to the cold showers and the excuses and everything else like, you know there’s some baselines in life that are pretty easy, even the beverage challenge or whatever it is like, if you want to stop drinking, if you want to stop having bottled beverages or you just want to stop drinking sugary stuff even, it’s not that hard if you just do it, like if you just make the one tweak or you find the one thing and then you do it. A lot of these things that you want to make a substantial change in some way, shape or form, it’s really not that hard if you just think about it. Think about it, make one tweak to your daily habits and then you don’t really have to do anything else after that.

Joshua: Some people really… I agree with you and then it puts me out of touch with a lot of people who say that it’s really, really hard. It almost makes me want to smoke two packs of cigarettes for a day or for a year just so I can stop at the end and say, “Look, yeah, it’s hard.” I mean, you’ve got to deal with, I don’t know what the withdraw symptoms are but you have to deal with it but then you’re done.

Joel: There’s a there’s a guy who did, I think a challenge that was Fit to Fat to Fit.

Joshua: Yeah, yeah, I’ve read that. Yeah.

Joel: And he gained like 200 pounds or something like that and he lost them again and his whole goal was to just say like, “Hey I’ve been the whole spectrum and it’s doable” and yeah it’s, I don’t know, it’s the same thing that gets in people’s mind with anything. You know it’s really easy to convince yourself that it’s really difficult and you’re not capable to do it. I think the answer is you’re more than capable of it, you can do a lot more than you’re artificially holding yourself back from. But that’s the thing like, if you can’t take a cold shower, how are you going to do anything else difficult in life? If you can’t throw away, if you can’t throw away your own trash into a can that’s fifteen feet away, how are you going to run a 5k or run a 10k or do anything you know that actually takes some effort? And I think it’s one of those things, once you build the habit of discipline like,” Hey, I’m going to throw away all my stuff” or “Hey, I’m going to brew my own drinks” whatever that is, it builds a discipline, it builds a strength and then carries over it through a lot of other things and a lot of times you want to run before they walk and you kind of need to get started with the basics first.

Joshua: So maybe so for people for who this is a big deal, maybe this is your chance. Like, you heard us talking about cold showers and maybe you’re thinking, “That’s crazy” or “Too much”. Well, find something you’re doing… Yeah, I think that’s something I’ve actually been saying in a few of these interviews is that, for people who want to improve their lives lots of people have challenges of what area they want to improve and do something to help the environment, whatever your values are, you can probably find something in the environment that you can do something to pollute less or emit less or something. It’s a pretty safe place to start.

Joel: People are talking about cleaning up your life. You know, you want to clean up your life, pick up the pieces like, literally just clean up one thing like, pick up a piece of trash. That’s really, really basic way to do it. And it’s super practical. There’s no hidden meaning it’s just like, “Okay, you are actually cleaning it up” and you just have to start that snowball somewhere. It could be, I mean it literally sounds like the easiest thing in the world and it’s physical, it’s practical, you see the before, you see the after. There’s a bunch of different things in it that make it a really good starting activity and once you see the physical chains, you’re like, “Okay, it was dirty, now it’s clean” and then you can move on to the next thing


Joshua: Man I would love if somewhere down the road it was just a natural thing that lots of people picked up garbage and they’re like, “Yeah, yeah, it started from Joel and Josh were talking on the podcast and they said, “Yeah, it’s really easy to do” and that I did it, it was easy” and the whole world starts just picking up trash like, how hard is it? How proud are you that you can’t stoop down and pick up a piece of trash every now and then?

Joel: To make that a challenge, it is like trash picking up something like that.

Joshua: I mean the goal, hopefully by the time listeners are listening to this the page will be up but I do want to make a page where you can put your name, what challenge you’re taking on, how long you’re going to do it for and then your testimonial when you’re done. And in fact, did I tell you the thing about the donations?

Joel: No.

Joshua: Hopefully this will be up because you know, I’ll probably put up some Patreon or Kickstarter or some sort of way of crowdfunding because I’m paying for stuff here and I want to say, if you meet… Hold on, New York City… and I want it… it’s noise pollution but I’m not going to… I’ve talked to the firehouse.

Joel: That’s an uphill battle right there.

Joshua: And it’s not just, it’s not just noise pollution like people honking. It’s the fire department. They’re like completely untouchable. I called 311, I was like, “Is there anything we can do?” and they were like, “You can’t tell firemen not to put on the fire thing.” That’s it. They are like way above the law. Anyway, so I have a thing where people can donate money and I’m going to say you must first change something about yourself before you can donate money. If you don’t change yourself, here’s a list of places that will accept your money for you to tell other people what to do but not yourself. But here you have to change yourself first. So I want to do that. It’s a nice little challenge to people. And so on, I want to have that list. Actually, I realized lately that I want to put another column on the list which is, “What value do you have that this touches on?’ So not just doing something because someone told you to but it has to be something you care about. And I hope that’s what drives people. I think with you, you’re doing it as a challenge, as like, you like to do things that the average person, it’s like a little beyond the average person. And I think that you, correct me if I’m wrong, but you grow and develop in that way and you find out about yourself. And I think that’s what you, one of the things you found in here.

Joel: It’s just a different lens like these different things and so I wouldn’t say it was a particularly difficult challenge but it’s one of those things you’re like, once you’ve developed that muscle, okay, this isn’t like beyond me, this just requires a shift in focus or like a just a little bit of concentration applied to this specific area. Then it becomes pretty easy but I don’t think a lot of people, a lot of people haven’t ever flex any of those discipline muscles or any of those muscles to kind of implement their will on things. And so if it gets difficult and they’re like “Oh, I just can’t do it because it’s hard” versus saying, “It might be like a little bit hard but it’s still completely doable.”

Joshua: Yes. So for you discipline is like a big value that this connects with. And so I think you’re doing it like, were you doing this for yourself, for me, whom were you doing this for?

Joel: To be honest I did it a little bit for you but one of the nice things that came out of it was just constrainedly, so I tend to like, when I drink a lot of beverages, like bottled beverages, I would say 80% of them have more sugar than they need and most of it is added sugar and not like anything good. And so that like helped me cut out a bunch of stuff that I should be cutting out one way or another and literally a lot of times my girlfriend actually askes me, she’s like, “Why are you drinking…” You know, the running joke that I have is, I have like a couple of health and fitness blogs, doing a bunch of stuff with paleo and my number one addiction is probably Red Bull, which is terrible for me. And it has like way too much sugar, all of that stuff. My girlfriend once she asked me, she was like, “Are you drinking it because you need it or you just wanted something that was nice to taste while you’re working or something like that?” And I realized like half the time the caffeine is like a nice boost but a lot of times it’s just something I need, I need something to drink while I’m working and water is great sometimes but unless it’s like ice frozen cold it’s not always the best thing. And so tea’s basically become a replacement for that in a way that has been really good, it cuts out all the sugar that is pretty much you know, I don’t have a lot of sugar in my day-to-day life but like that would be like one highly concentrated area where it’s like, “Okay, that’s pretty much undoing all the good you’re doing by avoiding it and other errands.”

So, that was really good for me and then just the picking up trash like it was, I don’t know there’s something about picking up trash that you know, littering it doesn’t seem, if I was to go litter, I’d feel very conscious about it like, “I’m doing this and I’m being defiant or something like that” There’s a social pressure I guess that would just keep me from littering but there’s also social pressure I think that keeps you from stopping and picking up someone else’s trash and I don’t know what that is. But especially in parks this is kind of a good impetus for me to be like you know, I want to get annoyed at someone, I want to be like really like, confront someone but with this challenge you’re just going to have to do it. And so that was good for me just to be like, “Okay, I’m just going to pick it up and I’m not going make a big deal about it and I’m not going to find who did it but you know just I’m going to do it and I’m doing it because you know I enjoy the parks and I want them to be clean.”

There’s a lot of trail runs out there that will, if they’re not well run they will end up like littering all over the place but there’s been a real big push, especially in the last few years to have throw-areas and to have specific areas where trail runners, they’re stopping at their aid stations or wherever. That’s where all the trash goes and if you’re [unintelligible] or something like that outside that aid stations you kind of hold on to it until you get back to the next one. And so it’s kind of become an important thing for me to just be like, “All right”, I’m using these quite a bit, I like these resources, I don’t want them to be littered with crap as you’re running through it because half the reason you run through them is get out in nature and that was kind of like a nice actual practical way for me to kind of get back and be a little thankful for all the places that I’ve been fortunate enough to run in.

Joshua: So it sounds like it’s connecting with a fair number of things, with community and different practices of yours as well as your own personal growth and development.

Joel: And nature in general, yeah.

Joshua: Yeah, and going back to the Red Bull stuff, it sounds like when you were saying, “I’m drinking less” I’m like, “Okay, you’re just having less drinking but it’s connected to something bigger.” Like something, like some habit that you really were not that into, that your girlfriend was maybe teasing about or highlighting.

Joel: Yeah, yeah, she’s just like, “Hey, what’s the real motivation here?” And you’re like, “Yeah”, I actually haven’t thought about it, I just kind of got into robotic you know like motion on that and it’s kind of like a small thing out of a bunch of things but it was good to kind of refocus on.

Joshua: And I have to say being someone myself when you talked about you developing a tea habit and I’m thinking you sound a lot like me. I mean, you’ve been to my place and had my food. I got a bit of a food habit that I’m really into and people are like, they think it’s really extreme and I don’t think it’s extreme because every step I’ve taken has been a baby step from something before which in itself was a baby step. And so I never really felt like I went that far, ending up having all this, you know fresh cooked food and after this I go pick up my vegetables. And same with the garbage, it’s like, people are like, they don’t make a big deal out of it but they do say that throwing, not having too much garbage is like a big deal. But I’m like, I don’t feel like I’ve changed my life that much to get to throwing out the garbage once or twice a year. It’s just you take a step, it becomes automatic, you take another step, it becomes automatic each time. You just see the next thing, your horizon keeps changing and things that were distant are now in your horizon and easier to do. Do you feel like, do you have a tug of like next thing that’s going to come or am I extrapolating too far?

Joel: No, I mean, I’m pretty into ice tea now so…

Joshua: Are you making a lot of different kinds?

Joel: No I have a, do you know Jocko Willink?

Joshua: I don’t know him, I mean I’ve skimmed a bit of his book and I’ve read it. I’ve listened to him I don’t know him though.

Joel: Yeah, he’s got, he’s got a thing called, a book called Extreme Ownership which is basically about taking ownership of your life but he’s got a tea, like a pomegranate, like white tea. So it’s got like a decent amount of caffeine but it also you know, tastes pretty good and I had at one point a huge box that I ordered when I was traveling and it came in and I hadn’t gone through it and so I just have been kind of working on that lately and it’s been really good. So ice tea is kind of like a thing now and I’ve been enjoying that and probably going to try out some other stuff too.

Joshua: I’m going to give you a preview of what might be to come. When you were here did I have any sauerkraut?

Joel: You might have given some to Jenny.

Joshua: So I found out that in other cultures they do fermentation to keep things edibles and to keep things from rotting as opposed to refrigeration and it turns out that sauerkraut is real easy. So like I’ve been doing that and then I started realizing I’ve been really wanting to cook Thai food because my favorite cuisine is Thai cuisine. And if you don’t get canned stuff you can’t really, I was like where do you get coconut milk from? At least a year I’ve been wondering what’s coconut milk because when you get a coconut there’s water, the sweet water inside and there’s the flesh. Okay, where’s the milk? Have you ever wondered this yourself? Like what’s coconut milk? You’ve had coconuts, right?

Joel: It’s the mix of it all, right?

Joshua: Yeah. Turns out you blend it together and so now it turns out, I was at the bulk food store and they have shredded coconut you know, no sweetening, just shredded coconut, mix out with a little bit of water in the blender and you get coconut milk. And now I can make Thai food and…

Joel: Here you go.

Joshua: My point is like, you talked about how you’d make different teas and it just suddenly opens up so much and it’s all these little things that after a while all these little things I learned people look and they’re like, “Wow, you really know a lot of stuff”, I’m like, “Do I?” I didn’t realize that I made that transition because I definitely remember you know, my mom’s an amazing cook and when I’d see her cooking I was like, “Wow, all these things that you do, I don’t know what’s going on, it seems very complicated” but after a while you just learn this, you learn that, you learn this, you learn that, this tastes really good. You’re like, “Oh”, I guess it’s not a big deal for me to make coconut milk now but I would have thought it would be impossible. Anyway, I love it. It’s really, all the videos I saw online, they’re like, “Here’s how you do it” and then they taste like also good, so much better than canned. And now I do, “Oh, this is really better than canned.”

Joel: It’s funny.

Joshua: And now one day you’re going to taste, you’re going to get some Red Bull and you can be like, “Blah, why did I do that?”

Joel: Their marketing, their marketing. They’re the only product I think I’ve ever bought specifically, I was like, I watched one of their YouTube videos and I was like, “I want to do that” and so I might come up with a healthy alternative for Red Bull so just stay tuned for that.

Joshua: All right, you and Jocko, you’ll be competing with Jocko that will be tough.

Joel: Yeah, there we go. Sorry, Jocko, I’m coming for you.

Joshua: So, all right. I want to leave with one last question. Is there anything else that I didn’t think to bring up?

Joel: No, I think we covered it.

Joshua: So is there any last message you want to leave for someone listening to this and maybe they’re on the fence or they’re thinking about what to do. Any advice or thoughts or words to slip by anything like that related to this?

Joel: I think we kind of touched on it and I don’t know if you want to [unintelligible] but I think it’d be an interesting starting point but a lot of people talk about they want to change something in their lives, that they want to do something and they want to clean something up and it’s really easy, like the easiest way to get started with that is to literally just clean up the stuff around you. I noticed that with like my junk like, moving from New York to San Diego and I’ve seen all the things that I had and like my car and left over [unintelligible] and looking at all like, figuring out what I am going to give away and what I’m going to sell and get rid of or whatever. But also, just you know, the junk around you in your day-to-day life and cleaning up the environment around you, it’s really easy. There’s something satisfying about seeing something that’s dirty and then seen it get cleaned up and that combined with you being the one that’s cleaning it up and having an impact, direct impact on that is, I don’t know, I think there’s something there that if people don’t know where to start that’s a good spot.

Joshua: Well, let’s leave it at that. Joel, we’ve been in touch for a long time. I really appreciate you coming on here and I look forward to being in touch more and finding out how things of all. Let me know next time you’re in Ney York City.

Joel: Yeah. Thanks for having me, man, and let’s talk again soon.

Joshua: Okay, thanks a lot! Bye.

Joel: Bye. See you.


In Joel’s words almost too easy, yet he learned a lot more than he would have had he read books or statistics about litter or bottled beverages and the unhealthiness of all the stuff they put in it. And when he habitualizes stuff as he said, it makes it trivial, almost no mental effort and yet very enabling. It takes very little time and then he got less sugar, less unhealthy stuff but with a gain enjoy and refreshment, more contact with nature. I don’t know your values but if they include clean land, clean air, clean water, here are two places where you can start what Joel did. But be warned, you will care more, you will change, you will improve as a leader. I predict that you’ll be surprised, you’ll start noticing other’s behavior and your own behavior and you’ll probably get less tolerant for litter and waste. And isn’t that an area where we want to be less tolerant? Anyway, if you learn these skills that Joel identified as being able to do what you want to do, you might get promoted, you might get hired, you might get funded elsewhere in life. That’s what happens when you lead. So what better place to start your snowball than cleaning up the world around you and what you put in your body?

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