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John Kim on changing your story

By January 2, 2020 January 12th, 2020 One Comment

“If you can create a new love relationship for you, and trust your choices, that container can actually change and grow you.” – John Kim

Mark has a new book coming out in 2020 about the seven commitments of leadership. It is called “Staring Down the Wolf: 7 Leadership Commitments That Forge Elite Teams,” and is available now for pre-order. Commander Divine writes about many of the great leaders he met in SpecOps to give examples of the commitments that one has to make to the 7 key principles of  Courage, Trust, Respect, Growth, Excellence, Resiliency and Alignment.

John Kim (#theangrytherapist) is known as “The Angry Therapist.” He is an author, therapist, entrepreneur and podcaster.  His book is “I Used to Be a Miserable F*ck: An Everyman’s Guide to a Meaningful Life,” and today he talks with Mark about therapy, coaching and parenting.

Hear about:

  • How John is dedicated to being authentic rather than simply being teaching things “at” his clients.
  • Life coaching is often a misnomer, and the term isn’t very specific.
  • Parenting is understanding that kids aren’t going to be “clones,” doing the exact right things that you think they should be doing all the time.

Listen to this episode to get a new perspective on coaching and therapy.

As you guys know, Mark has been using Halo Sport for the last year and half and he has loved it. Halo Neuroscience revolutionized human performance when it debuted Halo Sport in 2016, the first brain stimulator that accelerates muscle memory development. Halo Sport is now trusted by teams and athletes from the U.S. military, Olympics, MLB, NBA, NFL, NCAA, and more.

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You’ve probably already heard Mark extolling the virtues of the PowerDot to help with recovery. The PowerDot is an electrical stimulation device that allows you to increase performance, speed up recovery and overall achieve a deeper mind/body connection. Many stim devices can be clumsy and hard to use. PowerDot achieves simplicity and is well-designed. They put professional level physical therapy in your hands easily and inexpensively. They now have a version 2.0.

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Hey folks. This is Mark Divine. Welcome back to the Unbeatable Mind podcast. Thanks so much for joining us today.

We’re here in studio at Carlsbad, California at SEALFIT and Unbeatable headquarters… And my guest today is John Kim.

Super-excited to talk to John: The angry therapist and author of “I Used to be a Miserable Fuck.” Can’t wait to talk to you about that, John:

Anyways, before we go into a little bit more detail with John and we kind of get into the thick of things, my book, “Staring Down the Wolf,” is due out in March. So I assume that’s going to be a little bit in the future from when this podcast gets launched.

And we’d love to have you support it by going to the pre-launch page at and check out some of the really cool offers… Basically, getting the book… Either individual signed copy or all the way up to like a hundred copies signed. And get some cool pre-offers that won’t be available after this essentially.

And you know it helps us authors to really support a book at launch… Because, you want to get as many people buying the book and talking about the book… And you might even get on a bestseller list, which is actually the real game.

John: Yeah.

Mark: So anyways, And I’m pretty transparent as to why I want you to go there, I guess. But I appreciate your support. Hooyah.

John, man it’s super cool to meet you. Thanks for taking the train down from LA today.

John: Yes. I’ve never taken a train before and what a way to go.

Mark: It’s cool, isn’t it?

John: The traffic’s gotten so bad in the city.

Mark: I can’t stand getting on the I-5. I mean, I have everything set up so I can just go on the 101 here and there. And anytime I have to get on I-5, I literally have to like do my mental prep, you know what I mean?

John: Yeah, it’s gotten so bad. Where if you don’t live in your own kind of bubble and have your own tribe la is just… The traffic and the increase in price… People are making an exodus, I think, from New York. And all coming here. Because they want kale in the backyard.

Mark: Why would they want to come here?

John: I think they went there in their 20s, and it was fun and exciting when you’re 20 to live like sardines and excitement in the city. And now that they’re in their 30s, they’re like “fuck this. I’m coming to LA.”

And so we’re having all these people come to la.

Mark: I guess if you come from New York, la probably seems awesome, right?

John: Yes. You’re thinking about the beach and the sun… And then they come here and they realize that now almost as expensive as New York.

Mark: Yeah, New York and California I think are the most expensive states, aren’t they?

John: Yeah, it’s getting really bad. Anyway…

Mark: Yeah. Well, cool. I appreciate you being here. Now you go by the term “The Angry Therapist?”

John: Yes.

Mark: What’s up with that? And the title of your book is “I used to be a miserable fuck.” so there’s two things right there that kind of anchor you in an interesting way. So what’s all that about?

John: Yeah, the angry therapist started about ten years ago after I went through a divorce.

Mark: That can make anybody pretty angry, I guess.

John: Yeah, I was angry. I was miserable. I was unhappy. And I kind of had to start my life all over. And so I created a blog on Tumblr. Tumblr was kind of big at the time.

And it was just for me. I didn’t think anyone would read it. And I thought it was funny that a therapist is angry. And what I didn’t know that I was doing, was I was humanizing myself. Because I pulled the curtain back, I started to talk about my feelings what I was going through.

I discovered CrossFit. I discovered motorcycles. I got some tattoos, and I went on this like hero’s journey…

Mark: (laughing) Sounds like a little bit of a midlife crisis…

John: Yeah, yeah absolutely. But a midlife crisis I think has stigma around it and people right that it’s like buying a corvette…

Mark: Hero’s journey is a much better way to look at that. But a lot of people, when they have a breakdown and then they retreat, they kind of shy away from the hero’s journey part of it. Where you have to go face the dragon, learn some skills and then slay the dragon.

John: Yes, absolutely. Yes, I think the difference between a midlife crisis and a hero’s journey, is with the midlife crisis you’re running away from yourself. A hero’s journey is where you’re slaying dragons and return to the village changed – you actually have to run toward yourself.

And so things like CrossFit. And things like getting on a motorcycle and learning to ride. And all of this was me running toward myself, not running away…

Mark: And how old were you when this all started?

John: Man, I was about 35? Mid-thirties. Becoming a therapist, created this blog… And I think people thought it was kind of interesting that there was a therapist who was also saying that he was broken. Because in our world, as a therapist you present yourself in a way where people don’t know who you are. You’re a cardboard cutout.

Mark: I have a lot of experience with therapy – and listeners know this – because I married one.

John: Oh you did?

Mark: When I was 26… No, when I was 31 in 1996… And she had far from an idyllic childhood and she’d be the first to admit it. And I’ve since come to recognize that actually a lot of people drawn to therapy are people who didn’t. And that’s what makes them really good at what they do. Because they understand it firsthand.

John: I think people who have the most trauma and have gone through the most stuff in their stories, end up being the most powerful catalysts.

Mark: I agree with that. That’s fascinating.

So before we dig into the kind of that – what was your childhood like? What was the trauma and the story that built your initial version of yourself?

John: I came to America when I was three. From Korea.

And parents worked all the time, so I tell people I was kind of raised by pop culture. And I was really bad at school, so in order to fit in I had to have some kind of ability. So for me – it was the ’80s and breakdancing.

And once I learned to spin on my head I was like “oh, and now girls like me. Now I could hang with the older guys.”

Mark: (laughing) Koreans love breakdancing for some reason.

John: (laughing) Yeah. I was doing when it was the first time. Yeah, now it’s like crazy.

But I genuinely loved it, and that’s when I first discovered flow states. That’s when I realized that you could put yourself in a state where you can lose track of time.

Then I started playing with BMX bikes and skateboarding and stuff like that. I was never an athlete, but I was athletic. And I got obsessed with doing things that made me feel alive. But parents were never home…

Mark: What did they do?

John: They came here with zero money and so my mom worked at like a 7-eleven – but it was called a stop and go at the time. And this was in Georgia. And she got robbed many times. And she was working the 17 hour days, not speaking English and all that…

And then my dad worked at a telephone company – GTE – and just manual labor running phone cables, and he built that into his own little business.

And so they were always gone working. And so my brother and I had no supervision. So we just went out and played.

And I think my parents just bought us things, because they thought that’s what it looked like to be American. And so we were the house where you would go into the cupboards and it would be like a liquor store – Twinkies and all the bad foods. And so all the kids came over for that.

And we had cable boxes, and things like the playboy channel and stuff that… You know it was like a Disneyland for 12 year-olds.

But the thing about parents not being home – and this I learned later when I was working in non-profit – is I didn’t get a lot of emotional milk. I didn’t get a lot of dad taking me to football games and building certainty in me.

Mark: You were raised by the pack, because your parents were absentee…

John: I was raised by the pack. And so I feel like that wired me to chase shiny things.

So by the time I was married, I was in Hollywood pursuing a screenwriting career. And I was obsessed with this shiny thing – which was the house in the hills…

Mark: You obviously went to college… High school and college. You were smart enough to navigate all that.

John: Yeah, absolutely. But I didn’t go to like an Ivy League school. People think, because you’re an author or therapist that you have done really well in school. You’re very academic.

And that was not the case for me. Yeah.

Mark: Did you have a lot of variety of friends? Like cultural variety? Or were you kind of with the Korean group?

John: You know, if I grew up today, I would. I grew up in the ’80s where Asian people were made fun of. And it wasn’t cool.

I mean it was just a little bit after like Jerry Lewis was taping his eyes back. And you know in the eighties or characters like Long Duk Dong in John Hughes movies and stuff.

And so I just got really lucky – it seemed like with the cool kids, and the jocks and stuff, they only kind of let in one token Asian, and I kind of slipped in. So I didn’t get bullied or picked on.

But now Asian people are cool. And they’re a lot more accepted, they’re in media more and I think it’s a really exciting time. Not only for Asians, but just all minorities and cultures.

Mark: Yeah. Interesting.

So whatever happened to that first career? The screenwriter, or the producer?

John: I had a knack for it, because I was able to get representation as a writer. I sold a screenplay. But it was too feast or famine.

And I started to write for the wrong reasons. So instead of writing because I was passionate and I was interested in the craft – I wanted to write, because I thought it was my ticket out of mediocrity, and into being quote-unquote “successful.” so buying the things, having the house and the fancy cars and all that.

And because that didn’t come, I didn’t allow myself to be happy. So I would just go into a Starbucks every day for 12 hours and like “Death of a Salesman.” Just write and be miserable. And I wouldn’t have any friends. I had no form of fitness or training. I had no sense of self. I was a complete boy – a man-child.

And I think that contributed to the expiration of my marriage.

Mark: (laughing) Your marriage had an expiration date?

John: Oh absolutely, absolutely.

Mark: Because you were just not there for her? Or was it mutual?

John: I think part of it was just not being aware, part of it was being a child, part of it was because I didn’t have a strong father figure who taught me how to be a man, and what a man looks like.

Because I grew up skateboarding and trying to be cool, I didn’t have a lot of tools in relationships. I had a lot of ego. I talked about in this book to respond instead of react, so I was very reactive. And I think that’s one of the greatest separations between a boy and a man – boys react, and I think men respond.

So up until 35, I was a walking reaction. And then after the divorce and then going through my journey – I realized that the power is in the response, and not the reaction, you know?

Mark: So the divorce obviously was traumatic enough to cause you to literally do an all stop and go on this hero’s journey to find the real John Kim

John: Yeah, it was a real call to action. Shattered my heart. But it was also the best thing that’s ever happened to me, in the sense that if it wasn’t for that inciting incident, I don’t know what I’d be doing. I mean, I wouldn’t be helping people, I wouldn’t be a therapist… I’d probably be an addict… I don’t know what I would be doing.

So it kind of saved me.

Mark: That was your savior, yeah… I’m not sure what word you would use for an inciting incident… Catalyst, I guess… Catalyst for transformation.

So is that when you started getting into therapy yourself?

John: Yes, I got into therapy myself. I got obsessed with this idea of looking inward. The universe threw me into a nonprofit, where I started working with addicted teens. And I realized we lived in a fatherless nation – meaning dad is either not home physically, or he’s not home emotionally. And so because of that I saw the byproduct of these teens – and girls standing too close, no boundaries – and boys either wanting to be me or fight me. And they’re all addicted to something. And a huge contributor to that, was that there was this absent positive male role model.

And so they found it in gangs, or other things. And that led them down to destruction and using.

So as I was doing that I was also in treatment. Meaning we were working in residential, so I was also discovering connecting to my body through functional fitness. I used to be the guy that would just go to the gym and do some curls. And I would look like a pigeon, because I never squatted.

It was just for show, and then when I found like CrossFit and functional fitness, I was like “oh, this is what it’s like.” and I got addicted to getting to that white zone where you feel like you’re dying, and see if you could stretch that.

So there was a lot of growth there physically.

And then emotionally just working on yourself. Looking inward for the first time.

Mark: And so at what point did you consider shifting focus and becoming a therapist yourself?

John: As the divorce was happening, as my marriage was falling apart, I realized that I wasn’t happy and that screenwriting wasn’t going to be it. And I was talking to my own therapist and he said “what do you want to do, if you can’t make movies? Or pursue that?”

And I said, “If I can’t move people by the masses, I wanna do it one at a time. I wanna do what you’re doing. I’ve always loved psychology.”

And he says “well, go do it.” and I thought you needed to be a PhD, I thought you needed really good grades.

He’s like “you just need a master’s, which takes two years.” and then at 35, back to school. What he didn’t tell me is that you also need three thousand hours.

Mark: (laughing) You got three thousand long hours.

John: That took me like six years. I mean that was brutal. And it’s lonely. So after I came out of that, I had a really like…

Mark: Where’d you go to school, by the way?

John: I went to school – got my bachelor’s at Cal State Northridge, but the masters in Encino, in a private school, psychology.

And when I was done with that, and I was doing the hours – cause it’s so bad as far as the pay…

Mark: It’s a tough row to hoe…

John: Yeah. And by the time you’re getting your hours and swimming toward 3,000, you start to lose the passion of why you started this in the first place, right? And a lot of people who are doing this, they’re mothers, they’re you know people that are…

Mark: And you can’t practice and take money until you get that 3000 hours?

John: Yeah. And you don’t get paid for it. I don’t know how people are doing it. So I was kind of thinking, “There’s gotta be a better way to help.”

Mark: It’s an unbelievably high standard, actually. It’s too high.

And in the life coaching world, you could just get certified literally for a few weeks. And then go out. And basically a lot of life coaches are kind of like presenting the similar tools.

John: So that’s what’s happening right now. So what I did was I created this online at school called journey coaching – its JRNI – and I decided to create a new way to help people help people.

And I know life coaching has a lot of stigma. You could become a life coach over the weekend.

Mark: It’s just over five hundred of them out there. We recently researched that. Five hundred life coaching certifications.

John: Oh, is it really? Holy shit. Yeah and there’s a board with that. So you got to be careful.

But our training thing is legit, and it’s twenty weeks and it’s intensive. And so I started that and so that gave me a sense of purpose.

And at the same time I started to write my ass off. I started blogging like I’ve never done it before.

Mark: Oh that’s awesome. Now you had something to write for.

John: Yes. When I was writing a screenplay, I was doing it for myself in kind of an egotistic way – for money. And then when I started blogging, I was doing it for other people. Meaning taking their questions and doing what I can to help them

Mark: Right. Is your blog The Angry Therapist?

John: Yep.

Mark: And so what point did you come up with that? Was it just because you were pissed off…?

John: Yeah, I thought it was funny that the therapist was angry. But I think it was also, kind of subconsciously, me humanizing myself. That it’s okay to be angry. It’s okay to have feelings and be a therapist you don’t have to just be neutral. It’s okay to show yourself,

Mark: To be honest, there is a lot of people like who go to therapists and the therapists say “you know what? That anger is just a fleeting thing.” or you know “sit with the anger.” right “really feel it.”

And you’re like “that’s not helping me. I’m fucking pissed off.”

John: Yeah absolutely.

Mark: And also pretending that they don’t have some of these same issues.

John: Well, cause they don’t really connect.

Mark: Right. You can’t connect. It’s okay to be angry. It’s a powerful emotion, isn’t it actually?

John: It can be great. As long as…

Mark: You use it for good purposes.

John: Exactly. I mean, you could also use anger – and people do – in fitness, in competition in sports…

Mark: Absolutely. I think a lot of angry Navy SEALs. You stoke that anger going into combat. You just have to control it, right?

John: You just have to control it. I mean, once it turns into rage it becomes a weapon and out of control, that’s different.

Mark: That’s reactive.

John: That’s reactive, right. But using anger that’s controlled can be a response.

Mark: Right, so would you say “the angry therapist” has like a core philosophy?

John: Many, but I think one of them is that your story is gold. That there’s power in your story.

So one of the things that I’ve learned in treating thousands over the last decade, is most people want to rip out chapters – and we were talking about trauma earlier – because of what happened, and because no child enters adulthood unscarred – whether it’s sexual assault, or broken hearts, or divorce, or people who have left or whatever…

Mark: Or even just childhood trauma…

John: Oh, tons…

Mark: I recently did something called the Hoffman process. You heard about that?

John: No.

Mark: It’s all about early childhood trauma. Which basically their premise is that you can’t avoid it. Even in idyllic families, because that undifferentiated child in the first 36 months, there is no separation between me and my mom, or me and my parents. And so if our parents are in the other room arguing, I’m wrong. I’m experiencing trauma. Or any million things like that…

John: Yeah, and a lot of people think trauma means you know something you experience in Iraq, or sexual trauma, but that’s not true. I mean, someone could steal your skateboard and can be traumatic. So it depends on the individual and the circumstance.

Mark: And one more point on that – because I do a lot of work with vets through our courage foundation.

A lot of the vets with post-traumatic stress are finding that through therapy that the real issues actually preceded their military… And the combat like layered on and exposed it.

John: It’s almost like your story pre-… That the military kind of positions you. And then that basically and becomes a trigger.

And I think that’s why a lot of times a different person that’s been through the same thing, doesn’t have the effects, right?

Mark: Right, yeah.

John: But going back to this idea of embracing your story, I think that our stories are powerful and that we need to actually accept, own, embrace and share.

Mark: And in order to do that, you got to analyze them. You gotta become self-aware.

John: You got to go on your journey.

talking and walking


Mark: My first journey into story came through meditation. And I got into Zen training through a martial art, and I didn’t have a therapist – never was even a discussion in my family. Upstate New York family.

Still to this day I’m the only one of my family has ever been to therapy, or even considered it. God bless them all. (laughing) Makes for interesting holidays.

At any rate, but meditation is when you can still your mind long enough to have the experience of mindfulness right, then you become self-reflective.

John: Yes, it creates the soil for that.

So how do you meditate? What’s your process?

Mark: Today my process is – I’ve been training since 21 years old, and so the process I teach is slightly different from the process that I do. But there’s still an element of that that happens when I meditate.

So first I begin by this practice we called box breathing, and that’s to calm my body down. This is the arousal part. Because if your body is agitated and out of control, then your brain is as well.

And so then I turn that into concentration to radically reduce the quantity of my thinking and to get it laser-focused on one thing. And then – so this is a continuum, the Unbeatable Mind continuum.

And then I go into the mindfulness aspect, which is where I’ll connect with my witness – which is kind of my higher mind – and begin to watch the quality of my thoughts, without judging, without anything… And that’s where the pattern recognition comes in. It’s like almost like your own therapist.

John: Right. How long do you do that for?

Mark: My practice is a 20-minute practice every morning.

John: Okay, so that whole thing is 20 minutes? And you do that every day?

Mark: And at the end of it, I do my visualization practice which takes me… You know, when you get really good at visualization it’s almost instantaneous. You have to conjure up the image, re-energize it and then you can move on.

John: Yeah. I love that. I love that visualization, because I think a lot of people mistake that with just like seeing something, and it’s gonna fall in your lap. Or like this law of attraction thing.

But I love the idea that you have to drop into your body. I love the idea that you have to feel it…

Mark: Yeah, you have to embody the whole process. You can’t just be in the left hemisphere brain. And I think that’s why a lot of people fail with meditation is they sit down and they’re “thinkitating.”

John: Yes, yes. And then they judge that… “I can’t do this. And it doesn’t work. It’s stupid.” Mark: Right. It probably has some medical and health benefit, because they’re just slowing down enough to just sit. And so I think even if you just sit and think, it probably has some physical benefits.

John: Do you think that you can meditate, without the kind of traditional – you know, closing your eyes. And sitting cross-legged on the floor – can you meditate while being active?

Mark: The answer is we have to be clear about what we’re talking about. And the term “meditation” has been conflated to any type of mental practice. And so I usually don’t like the term “meditation” unless I use it for like the classic definition of meditation. For insight. When you get to the point where you drop all structure, and process, and you’re just able to rest in pure, aware presence from the witnessing perspective.

Then you get to tap into the great insight. That’s when you get these major paradigm shifts and the experience of you know total alive “nowness.”

John: Can you do that on a long motorcycle ride? Cause that’s where I get it.

Mark: I think you can. Because it has similar qualities – long motorcycle ride, long swim, long runners… When the repetitive motion doesn’t need to be thought about anymore. And when you’re not thinking about anything else, and you’re just present, and you’re just experiencing maybe the beauty of what’s racing by you on the motorcycle.

You have the same qualities of that insight. And you can have great epiphanies on a motorcycle ride.

John: Oh absolutely.

Mark: I got to tell you one of my favorite books – I think I read it like seven times – Robert Pirsig.

Terrific. And it’s all about this guy going on this long motorcycle ride with his son. And the guy has some sort of like madness and his son is supposed to is showing qualities of it. And how they kind of heal together on this motorcycle… And he uses the motorcycle as a metaphor for Zen and like just experiencing that bleeding edge of what he calls “quality.” which is like the air hitting the front of the motorcycle, then ripping across. And this idea that that always changing moment when the air is peeling across the front of the motorcycle. And him as a writer.

That’s where life is. Isn’t that cool? It’s that present moment that’s always changing. But it’s always got a sameness to it as well.

John: It’s very hard to live there. Especially in our world and also because of our wiring and most of us being in fight or flight, and thinking the sky is falling, and panic. And negativity.

Mark: I mean, we’re living in such a negative culture.

John: Toxic relationships – there’s so many layers to actually execute what we’re talking about and what’s in that book. I mean, we get it in moments. And so yeah.

Mark: So you call that a peak state – but to be fair I think that’s the normal state.

John: I mean, I agree.

Mark: We are just not… We’ve been trained out of being normal.

John: Right and we’re living with plaque. The norm actually – yeah you’re right – I mean when life was simple, besides where you’re gonna get your meal, I think most of the day we didn’t have… Whether it’s cellphones, or taxes, or the pressure…

Mark: And you were very close to earth. You lived in harmony with nature and animals. And everyone had that this like probably rarefied sense of aliveness and also connection. And that’s completely been stripped away from human beings in modern society.

John: Is that part of what you do with your program? Kind of get him back to that?

Mark: We strive to get people back to that embodied, integrated feeling of aliveness and wholeness. And the ability to feel connected to other human beings.

And we call that integration.

And at the integrated level, you really don’t fear other human beings. And you see their differences as really positive qualities, as opposed to something that separates us.

John: There’s a camaraderie.

Mark: Yeah. Like, “we’re in this together.” There’s more that is the same about you and I than a difference. I mean, you were born in South Korea, I was born in upstate New York. You’re Asian, I’m white – who cares?

There’s this sameness in spite of our differences. And that goes for the entire human race. And that’s like if everybody could start to experience that sameness, instead of the separation, then you could heal a lot. You’d heal the planet, you’d end a lot of strife.


John: You know, I think one of the greatest misconceptions about self-help is that you’re supposed to do it alone. And I think that we’re tribal creatures, and I think what you’re talking about and the way that I see it is like looking at one spirit. Looking at the essence of who you are…

Mark: That’s what I meant by sameness…

John: Yeah, so when I look at you know Mark, instead of thinking about what you’ve accomplished or who you are or the titles after your name or whatever… Getting to the spirit of who you are.

And in order to get there you have to be non-judgmental. You have to be open. You have to be present. And a shared experience definitely amplifies that.

I went on a dirt bike dirt bike trip with 12 dudes, from Yosemite to Sequoia, and we rode 80 miles a day. Didn’t talk much, just rode.

But that experience was so powerful and it connected us around the campfire and it proved to me that it wasn’t about the content. It was about what was happening underneath. The shared experience.

We’re all together. We’re just dudes all seeking adventure. And that’s really powerful.

Mark: Yeah and a shared positive experience. Like this is another way – back to like therapy and coaching – if you can bring people together in a shared positive experience – like what we do with through our SEALFIT events, or our Unbeatable Mind events – and they may not remember the content – like you said – but there’s enough insight that comes through their contemplation and their embodiment of all the training and the experience and the positive energy, that there can be transformation.

John: Well, cause you’re giving them an experience, instead of information. And that’s the thing in coaching, it’s not just classes you’re giving them an experience that they’re able to do together – and that’s what they’re gonna take away.

I mean, when we look back at high school and stuff, we don’t think about what we learned in geometry class, we think about who we took to the prom or that one guy…

Mark: Or on the training field, or in the pool for me…

John: Right. Well, I never played. But yeah – the touchdown you scored… I think part of that is because… We forget that we’re emotional based creatures, not logical. And we lead our lives with logic. And so dropping into your body – and I love what you’re doing because all of this stuff – the breathing, the visualization, the meditation, the environments you create – all of those challenges – it kind of strips away logic and it brings you back down to you dropping into yourself.

Mark: Yeah, we have a term – we call our 50-hour event Kokoro camp – and Kokoro is a Japanese term that I learned through my martial training – which means merging your heart, and your mind into your actions.

That’s one way. And also you could interpret as whole mind. And what I believe – I have no evidence – but I believe that power of the heart and your emotional intelligence dwarfs – if that’s right weird – the cognitive, rational…

John: Oh absolutely. I don’t think we’ve even tapped to the power of it.

Mark: Totally agree. Like, I even… Some early research is showing that literally the electrical energy yeah of the heart extends like 20-30 feet out.

Whereas the electromagnetic energy of the mind barely goes beyond the skull.

John: And what’s sad is we protect our hearts…

Mark: Right. We close it down…

John: Because we don’t wanna get hurt… And so by doing so, I think we lower our potential as humans, as just loving creatures, all of that. And so when we’re running through the world with just our mind and logic, and our hearts closed, we’re not able to tap into any of these amazing experiences.

Mark: Right. And so I have a premise that the heart can be trained, right? Therapy helps it in a one-on-one thing. What are some of the ways that you help your clients and the people you work with open up the heart and integrate…?

John: So as a therapist, I went rogue – meaning I never had an office. And part of it was because I was broke and I couldn’t afford one. But I said “you know what? If we’re gonna talk about life, let’s do life while we’re walking.”

So I started to bring people into the CrossFit box with me. Clients. And my colleagues were like “what are you doing?”

And I would take people on walks – we would go on hikes. So I combined talk therapy Mark: Talking and walking is powerful.

John: Yeah. I podcast that way. I just talk into my phone, and it’s just better, you know? It’s therapeutic.

And so I started to give clients not only a conversation and process, but also an experience. And then also – by doing so, I showed myself. So I showed up in jeans and t-shirts on my motorcycle.

And what I learned was the new generation coming up, they love this, because it kind of also takes away the stigma of like going into a room – and there’s nothing wrong with traditional therapy, I think it’s great. I think it’s very powerful. I believe in it.

But it wasn’t honest to me, you know? And so when you take them out of the room and you drop them into their body, and you come in casual over clinical, it creates a different experience and it kind of produces glue it produces trust and now instead of coming at them, you’re coming with them.

And for me that’s the only way I practice. And so that was very controversial. And I think that kind of paved my way to books and…

Mark: Yeah, it’s almost like I mean this idea of somatic therapy, right? It’s a little bit different, but somatic therapy creates an experience either through movement or…

Like I did – just out of total curiosity – cause I’m fascinated with equine therapy. So I’ve been working with horses.

John: Oh yeah, yeah. I’ve heard about that.

Mark: Yeah. And we spent half a day recently – my wife and I – with a somatic equine therapist, with her two horses.

And it was fascinating. You know, getting the horses to connect or to connect with the horses… And horses are very sensitive to your emotional states, and your mind. And then to work with them. So trying to get them to move with you, and do some things. And it was really, really cool.

John: At any point were you afraid? Like, were they kicking and…?

Mark: Oh yeah. I mean I’m 6′ 1″ and a Navy SEAL, and those horses are way more powerful than me. It’s unbelievable how strong those animals are.

But also just how…

John: Wait, so why horses? What do horses have that they can be therapeutic? And why not elephants or dogs?

Mark: It’s a really good question. And maybe an equine therapist could answer this, but there’s something about the horse that is super-sensitive to human emotions. That other animals – I mean maybe a dog has that as well – but the horse is going to communicate in a much different way than a dog.

They feel everything and so if you come up and you’re the angry therapist in your old days, the horse is gonna steer clear of you.

You gotta be really calm and clear your mind, and then the horse will just come up to you. You can’t go up to a horse. In fact, unless you’re in a state they can read pretty quickly they won’t even let you go close to the horse. Because it is dangerous, you know?

John: You know, I wish humans were more like that. Like can you imagine how different the world would be if I came up to you and I felt your anger or whatever and protected myself? Or if you were loving and welcoming, then there was an instant dance, you know what I’m saying?

Mark: Yeah. Yeah, that’s a skill it’s a skill. Unfortunately it’s also something we don’t learn in high school or college. We have to go through our hero’s journey, or expired relationships to look inward.

But I think the good news is, we can adapt this skill. We can choose if we want to, to kind of live this way.

But I do think it’s a practice. And I think that we could snap back like rubber bands very fast if we don’t practice. So whatever that looks like for you.

Mark: Yeah and I agree with that. Because I’m very inspired by my martial arts, Navy SEAL and even my yoga training – and I teach all these things – I firmly believe that every individual can train to master and integrate these skills. The physical, the mental and the emotional.

And that ultimately the training to be a full, whole human being is an individual journey, but it does require us to do that hero’s part where we face our fears…

John: Discomfort…

Mark: Yeah, we face our discomfort – the obstacle is the way – like my friend Ryan Holiday would say – go through that to find the other side.

But we need help a lot of times. It’s very hard – even the masters had a teacher. You know, I used to say every Navy SEAL starts with a single push-up or a single set of push-ups. Everyone looks at Navy SEAL said “oh my god, you’re the superstar and you were born that way.”

Wrong. You know, I’ve seen taken some of the most average people and turned them into Navy SEALs. Through training.

John: Do you think that’s the power of community?

Mark: Well it requires it requires community. It requires mentorship, coaching it requires individual discipline and commitment to a path – to a development path – it’s like the masters say there’s many paths to the mountaintop, but when you get there, you’re all on the same mountaintop.

And so a developmental path to become a Navy SEAL is one path. A developmental path to become an aikido master is another path. The developmental path to become an angry therapist is another path… (laughing).

John: Man, I wish I could take all the experiences and what you been through from the martial arts to the Navy SEAL training all that and just like insert it into my brain. I just can’t imagine…

Mark: (laughing) I’ve got a program for you. It’s called Unbeatable Mind.

John: Cause it requires a lifetime.

Mark: It does require a lot of work.

John: I played around with jujutsu, and I loved it, but when I get into something, I want to be really good and that takes like a 10-years, you know?

Mark: What’s ironic about that, John – and you know this – I’ve been training for so long that I’ve forgotten way more than I know.

John: Right. So you become a student again.

Mark: Yeah. Now I’m a student again. And I feel sometimes… Like I’m studying aikido right now and my mind is like scrambled. Because it’s so different, and it’s such a beautiful art. So I have to just completely empty my cup every day.

And I’m not a white belt anymore – I’ve already taken green belt tests – but I’ve already got I’ve got three black belts in other arts, but I am a complete beginner. And it’s been such a great experience for me.

But that’s a metaphor for everything. Like, the more you know the less you really know John: I actually – because I talk about relationships and love so much – I think that’s how we should approach relationships.

Mark: Completely agree.

John: Because what we do is we have a lot of old blueprints that we have traced from high-school, college… You know everything from like the type of person we want to be and what that looks like, and of course commercials and Disney movies…

Mark: And we hold on to all that structure.

John: And so when we find someone new, instead of creating a brand new… Instead of being a white belt, instead of being a student… We’re now comparing, enforcing and controlling and we end up creating the same experiences for ourselves.

And then we wonder why we’re alone.

Mark: Yeah, it’s like you have this puzzle that you’ve created for your life and you want every relationship to match your puzzle picture.

And the problem with that is you’re always in the same picture. The picture can’t change. You gotta take all these pieces of your puzzle, throw them out, shake it up and have it be…

John: Yes. So here’s my new philosophy. We’re talking about life, but if you can create or set up a new love experience for you. That is different than any other. And trust your choices, but then swim past the breakers and stay in that.

That relationship, that container can actually change and grow you. Most people don’t because of fears, because of all these other things… Because it doesn’t smell familiar, because someone’s not attractive enough physically or whatever it is. And so they end up just going through the same shit and then seeing a therapist and then… You know, the swipe culture today is just nutty.

And you end up doing a lot of life by yourself, feeling lonely… And then what you do is you internalize, and then now you’re finding ways to cope with this loneliness and enter drugs or you know shopping, gambling or plastic surgery… Whatever it is that you get obsessed with. And then you start to not believe in love anymore. And I think that’s very sad.

Mark: That is sad. Yeah, our relationships are our best opportunity to grow.

John: Yes, and that’s kind of the whole point. So whether we’re talking about Navy SEALs or the relationship you have with your boyfriend or girlfriend, they’re both equally important. So whether it’s your tribe or your partner…

And my whole thing… The flag that I’m waving or running with, is we need to treat relationships like it’s training.

Mark: Yeah, absolutely.

John: Instead of just “oh, because I don’t feel it, I’m out” or because it’s hard…

Mark: It’s uncomfortable.

John: Yeah, because what’s happening right now is – especially I think with the millennials – because they’re growing up with swipe culture, and everyone’s disposable. And you can find someone while your date is in the restroom on your phone. Like that kind of stuff, right?

Mark: (laughing) “This is not working out, I’ll just swipe right.”

John: There’s just very low… I think there’s a lot of laziness to put in the work.

Mark: The friction has been taken out.

John: It’s just a lot of filters now.

Mark: Yeah, we have this saying, “get comfortable being uncomfortable.” That’s where the lesson is. That’s where the learning and the growth is.

And so today culture anytime something gets uncomfortable – like you said – either swipe right, or click to the next distraction, or whatever…

John: People want things fast and they believe they have a lot of choices.

Mark: That’s right. There’s some good in that, but it could be really debilitating.

John: Well, when it comes to things like love, where relationships are built, you’re building on sand if that’s your mindset.

Mark: Yeah.



Mark: Before we started this conversation, you and I had a brief moment where we talked about the power of learning coaching skills, even if you’re not gonna be a like a life-coach or some sort of like named business coach. And I think that’s something I’d like to talk about, because there’s a lot of executives who are struggling with how do I build culture? How do I connect more authentically with my team?

You know, they say culture eats strategy, and culture is all about what we’re talking about here. Authentically connecting, building trust and respect and to be courageous in your authenticity or you know like what Brené Brown would say – vulnerability with your team.

How can coaching help with that? Coaching skills?

John: Well first of all I don’t I don’t like the word “life-coaching,” because when you hear life coaching you’re automatically thinking “okay, you’ve mastered life and you’re gonna tell me how…” if you’re gonna be a coach, you have to be very specific on what kind of coach you are. So a mindfulness coach, a meditation coach, a relationship coach, divorce recovery coach… All that…

Mark: We now have the Unbeatable Mind coach certification.

John: Yes, right, exactly. And that’s very specific. And we know exactly what kind of coach.

But when you say you’re a life coach, you’re not Yoda – and that’s why people push back against that.

I think step one in any coaching and also even as a therapist – step one is actually you go first. Meaning, if you’re not on a journey – and of course it’s never-ending, this kind of being a seeker and looking inward in your own life – then you’re basically just a broken record. You’re basically telling people what to do, not practicing it yourself. And I think most people learn from see watching someone, not being told what to do.

And so a lot of coaches today I think the mistake they’re making, they think coaching is about telling someone how to live their life, or a lot of advice.

It’s not. I think it’s about go live the way that you want to help people. The best that you can

That being said, your life is not gonna be perfect – because no one’s life is perfect – and then start to share your story and guide and be a catalyst, not pointing fingers or standing behind a podium…

Mark: Yeah, I agree with that. Back to our idea – it’s not really about the content. It’s nice to have a model, we have a model. We have tools and all that. But it really is about the relationship and the co-creation of transformation.

John: And then I love this leading by example. I love this idea that you go first and then I don’t know if the word is “follow,” but you can then be a guide. You can be catalyst. You could impact someone’s life.

Mark: Aside from that idea – that’s the big idea – what are some of the core competencies that you would teach someone to be an effective coach? Let’s say in a corporate team environment?

John: I love this idea of connecting to self.

Mark: Like self-awareness?

John: No, I think that as we grow up and life happens and trauma or divorce or whatever… We slowly start to disconnect with ourselves, right? And so I think a lot of self-betterment, a lot of leadership, is about first connecting to the spirit of who you are before whatever happened.

So whether it’s trauma, whether it’s expired relationships or maybe a lot of people they grew up and had to take care of their siblings – they had to grow up fast – and we put parts of ourselves into a hope chest. I think until we open that hope chest up and connect to that part of yourself, you become less whole.

So for me, it wasn’t so much the butterfly pull-up, or the handstand push-ups, or abs for CrossFit – I tapped into the 12 year-old spinning on my head as some of the happiest times of my life. And that’s like “oh, that’s John Kim.”

And so when I felt that in my body, I walked into rooms different, you know what I’m saying?

When I bought a motorcycle, it wasn’t about trying to be cool on a Harley. I tapped into that 13 year-old riding a little Honda scooter for hours around the block, and that’s the first time I’ve ever felt the most free and unafraid.

So connecting those parts of yourself, and as a practice… So not just a one-time thing, over a weekend, but that’s how you live your life and I think through that connection you have this reunion with your truth – or what I call your solid self – instead of pseudo-, and that’s where you become potent, and that’s where you actually can start to lead and go on your journey, and people I think notice that.

I think people can sense when you are consistent and pure like butter and this is who Mark is, or “oh, he’s tap dancing,” or “he’s being very pseudo-”

Mark: So instead of trying to do coaching…

John: (laughing) Yes, that’s the worst…

Mark: Be authentic. Then you’re there to help someone and in that process there’s co-creation…

John: Right, I think the process of being authentic is going to send the ripple and you’re gonna help people no matter what.

Mark: Yeah, and it’s not a solitary thing, like we talked about earlier. Authenticity is only experienced in the “we” space, right?

John: Yes.

Mark: Cause that’s where you get the feedback and the connection…

John: Yeah, you’re saying you can’t be authentic in a bathroom by yourself.

Mark: Right. (laughing) That’s what I’m saying.

John: You can…

Mark: It doesn’t mean anything though.

John: Also, it doesn’t take courage.

So I think with authenticity or vulnerability – like you said – it requires courage. And if you’re gonna do it alone, that’s not courageous. So to show yourself and be your true self with the guys in the locker room, or on the field, or in battle, or whatever it is… Or in your relationship… That takes courage, but that is where the repair is, that is where like you said that the tribe, you know, doing life with someone. And I think that kind of comes just down to kind of fundamental, human… That’s how we’re built…

Mark: Right, that’s awesome. What is your – besides CrossFit – what is your practice? What are your daily practices?

John: So I write every day. And you write so you know writing is a love-hate…

Mark: (laughing) Yeah, sure is.

John: So you have to put the hours into write. A lot of people want to write and they have a lot of ideas, but they actually don’t write.

Mark: It’s hard work, right? You gotta have a lot of discipline.

John: You’ve gotta put in the hours.

So I do that every day. I make sure that – so there’s three things that I didn’t have in my life that I do today – its meaning, joy and engagement.

So I had no meaning before. Other than just trying to make money. I didn’t have any joy. Didn’t allow myself to produce joy. Even in something as simple as like a hot cup of coffee, or a doughnut.

It doesn’t matter. I just didn’t produce joy.

And I don’t think joy falls on your lap. I think you have to go seek it, and search… And then engagement, I didn’t engage in life. I was invisible so if we were standing here today, and it was 10 years ago – I would be talking, but I wouldn’t really be listening to you. I wouldn’t be present, I wouldn’t feel your energy and so if you’re not engaging you’re like you know Michael J Fox disappearing cause he couldn’t get his parents together in “Back to the Future.”

Just like in limbo kind of you know. And that’s how I spent most of my twenties and thirties. So today I make sure that that’s threaded into my life. Writing gives me a sense of meaning and purpose. I’m now texting people.

So I text people every morning.

Mark: No kidding.

John: Like, clients. I have a texting service. To the masses.

That gives me sense of purpose and meaning.

Mark: Do you blog daily?

John: I blog daily – when I can – on medium. And then I produce joy. So that means whether it’s a CrossFit workout, or a motorcycle ride, or a doughnut, or amazing sex… Or whatever it is, right? Producing joy in your life to live at a higher frequency, so you’re not dipping into dread, worry, pessimism and what’s this about and all that kind of stuff.

And then also engaging. So engagement requires mindfulness. So whether you’re talking to a friend or a stranger – just on the way here I connected with someone on the train, just a stranger and because he said something to me – the world teaches us to kind of you know “oh, I don’t know him. Get away.”

But I engaged back and we had this amazing connection and conversation. And I think engagement opens that. And now you feel like you’re living in the world instead of just being a part of the world.

So I think all those three things are kind of like soil. I think it’s like if you look at the Maslow’s hierarchy, it’s the bottom. To get to a place of self-actualization or to get to a place where you’re authentic and solid and all that, these are some of the things that I think you need before.

Mark: Foundational stuff. That’s interesting. I love that.

Do you have a…? You write every day, you CrossFit, but what about like the morning? And the bookends to your day? What’s your morning ritual like?

John: I’ve been working on trying to – I know it’s a big buzzword right now – gratitude. I used to be the guy that used to just check off a list.

Mark: (laughing) Yeah, “Grateful for this. Grateful for that.”

John: Yeah, which does nothing.

Mark: Yeah, to really contemplate.

John: Yeah, so I tried to be still. And I try to feel it in my body. Like what am I grateful for today?

We also live in cognitive distortions a lot. So being aware of my distorted thinking and trying to see my thoughts through a snow globe. So noticing, but not allowing my thoughts to take me hostage.

Which I used to do and which ruined my life. And that keeps you in a very low frequency, because our thoughts are all… They’re all coming from dread, worry… It’s either like worried about the future, or dwelling on the past – so we’re living in time machines – which I used to do. And so you can’t be present. You can’t engage. You’re in your head the whole time. And to me that’s sad. I don’t want to live like that anymore, because I have…

Mark: I love the snowglobe metaphor. That’s a great one – especially as a visualization – to use that as like a witnessing practice.

John: I’m a visual person.

Mark: Yeah, me too. And it’s very powerful imagery is… When you combine imagery and emotion, that’s like the Holy Grail.

John: We’re usually in the snowglobe and shit’s falling on us.

And someone – god or the universe is turning the snowglobe upside down. We don’t realize we’re actually on the outside and we can watch the storm.

Mark: Well, you can be on either side. Just where you choose…

John: Where you choose to be.

Mark: Where you choose to live and experience your mind.

John: And also – you know, I’m going to be a father in about 10 weeks. So a lot that’s happening as a 46 year-old, where do my priorities lay? Because I think sometimes we hold on to what we think is important. And they’re old…

Mark: When you’re a father, your morning ritual is gonna change. Face it.

John: Oh yeah, I won’t have a morning ritual. There’s gonna be shit on my face… And again, that’s part of it.

Mark: Embrace the discomfort and learn.

John: Running either away from yourself or toward.

Mark: I have a son. He’s 20 now. But I remember when he was a baby – like it was a great opportunity to practice presence – just breathe with that little guy. And you’re holding him, or feeding him and you could feel this like agitation – like, I want to get up and do something, or I’ve got this project to finish, or I want…

No, because he’ll feel that agitation. So just…

John: So as an infant, what was the most difficult part about being a father?

Mark: You know, the early years were really good for us. And my son’s name is Devon – he’s awesome – but learning, surrendering to the fact that he’s just such a unique human being. And not gonna be like me.

So let go of any need that he has to be like me… Or do things based upon what society thinks is right, or a school or anything like that.

You know, I got him into boy scouts. I took him to a boy scout… Like a camping weekend… He begged me to take him home and not to leave him there.

And of course the scout leader’s like, ”Just leave him here, Mark: He’ll cry and everything and then tomorrow will be fine.”

To this day he’s like “Dad, you know what? Thank you so much for not ditching me there – at the boy scout camping weekend.” he goes “that builds so much trust.”

And that was like countercultural, right? Because all the other dads would have just ditched their kids but it just didn’t feel right to me…

John: To harden up, or man up.

Mark: Because he was like begging me to take him home.

You know, I did karate with him – Kempo karate – all the way up until we were testing for our brown belt. But the instructor didn’t require Devon to spar, to clash we could do all the kata’s and do all the self-defense techniques.

And I couldn’t get him to spar either.

So when we went for the test… On test day, I couldn’t get him out of the car. And I’m thinking back to like – what would my mom or dad have done? He probably would have dragged me out of the car by my ear. Or my hair and said “get in there.” you know what I mean?

And he’s like “dad, I just don’t want to fight another human being.”

I was like “okay, let’s go home.” and we never finished karate. (laughing) And I’m a Navy SEAL, right? I got three black belts, and I’m thinking “holy cow! This is a different kind of voice.”

John: I love that story, and you know what’s telling is if he said that – it means he felt safe to say that. So if you were the kind of dad that didn’t allow him to say things like that or if he got punched in the face, he wouldn’t have said that.

So that tells me that because you stayed at the boy scout camp or you did these things, or you allowed him to be him, and not put your own definitions on him – he felt safe enough to say “hey dad, I don’t wanna fight anymore. And that’s I think where the nectar of the father-son relationship is.

Mark: Totally. And it’s a day-by-day thing and we have such a great relationship now. And he still frustrates me, because I wish he was in CrossFit, and I wish he was doing this and that, for his own health…

But he’s 20 and he’s finding his own way.

John: Wow, what a great example, because I would have judged you and thought that okay, you have this whole Navy SEAL, leadership stuff. And that you would probably clone your son to be the same way.

Mark: (laughing) A lot of my peers – we’ll put that out there as the ideal, you know? And their kids are perfect little clones of them. And they will see some sort of breakdown…

I hope not, but you what I mean?

John: As a man, I hear that story and I actually have more respect for you. Because that’s harder for you to do probably.

Mark: It’s hard, yeah. Yeah. That’s interesting. I feel like you’re giving me therapy right now. John: For me, it’s being a new dad. I’m gonna put that in my back pocket and when I want to control or put my “shoulds” on my child, I’m gonna be like “hey, remember when you were talking to Mark?”

Mark: (laughing) Right. Take a breath. And allow the kids to be their own person. And to fall down. And you’re there to provide the boundary so they don’t veer off too far.

John: Yeah, but also I think that’s a model and metaphor for not just with father-son, but with anyone to be their own person.

Mark: Yeah, too often we’re projecting or transferring, and then we’re like “why is this person…?” and you’re like “turn around and look in the mirror.” you know what I mean?

They’re that way, because you’re basically presenting them that way to your own mind.

John: I talk about this idea of grabbing instead of holding. In relationships many people grab. So that’s what grabbing looks like.

And when you feed a pigeon, you have to put your palm up and allow the pigeon to come to you. If you chase a pigeon to eat, it’s never gonna…

And I think people do that in relationships. They’re chasing saying “this is good for you. This is what you need to do, and you need to lose weight or do whatever…”

Mark: As opposed to it just being a mutual attraction. Just open the hand and (laughing) if she comes and feeds…

John: Right, no absolutely. But there’s more trust that way and then you also have two people doing life, sharing their life, but being their own person. Instead of codependency and all this other stuff that creates that feels good, but creates unhealthy relationships.

Mark: Yeah. The short term feel good. But yeah…

John: And that dopamine we get from young love and we keep chasing it as an adult… I’ve done that and I still struggle with it – but again getting to a place where you’re setting up yourself for a new experience, where you can be yourself and allow the other person to be his or her self is what’s gonna create new tracks.

Mark: That’s awesome.

This book “I Used to be a Miserable Fuck: Every Man’s Guide to a Meaningful Life.” Do you have like a one or two kind of real cool insights to share around the book?

John: Yeah, it’s basically 66 tips pulled from my own story as I made my long journey from boy to man. It’s not me telling someone how to be a man or putting definitions – I don’t think that’s the right way to do it. It’s just me encouraging men to come up with their own definitions.

Mark: Awesome. And you mentioned that this is now available in airport bookstores. That’s pretty cool. That’s a big milestone. I’ve always wondered…

John: So I never really considered myself an author, and even to this day, I don’t feel like a writer. I feel like I got lucky.

And then it wasn’t until… It wasn’t when I got my book agent, it wasn’t when I got published, it was seeing it at the airport. Like I needed to have that experience where I was at an airport – there’s my book and I touched it – where it’s like “oh, okay, I feel like a writer now.”

That’s when something clicked, so now I can say that I’m an author without stuttering or feeling insecure.

Mark: Yeah, that’s cool. Well, John, I appreciate you. A really nice conversation and good luck with the book, and good luck with everything you’re doing.

John: Thank you so much.

Mark: So people can find you at

John: Yep, you can find me there. And if you want my daily text just go to my website and I’ll be in your phone.

Mark: That’s cool. So you send out like motivational stuff?

John: It’s all program, so Monday’s a challenge, Tuesday’s some kind of motivation, Wednesday’s a mindset or something – but at the end of the week, I send a link to a google doc that’s private. So it goes deeper – goes like five pages deeper into that topic. So it’s like mental programming, but emotional…

Just being creative with technology.

Mark: Yeah. And do you have a Facebook or Instagram handle?

John: Yeah, Instagram. Everything is just theangrytherapist.

Mark: Okay, awesome. Thanks for your time, buddy.

John: Thank you for having me on the show.

Mark: Yeah. All right folks, John Kim. Check him out at or on social media. And we’ll read his book. I can’t wait to read this, he just gave me a copy. “I Used to be a Miserable Fuck.”

I just love that. Anyways… Super-appreciate it, John. Let us know if we can help you out in any way. If you wanna come to Kokoro camp…

John: I think I might. I don’t know about the 50, but maybe the 12…

Mark: Start with the 12. Let us know. I mean, you got my email. Come on down as my guest, if you want.

John: I’m already kind of afraid thinking about it.

Mark: Yeah, you should be afraid. It’s challenging, but it’s definitely doable…

John: How many people do it at once?

Mark: We usually have anywhere from 25 to 50. We do things that you would expect like from CrossFit world, so you’re gonna do… Well, you’re gonna do the Navy SEALs screening test. And you’re gonna do Murph, but you know we want you to do Murph weighted so like you’re if your goal is to do the 50 then maybe do it weighted.

But in the 20X, we don’t require it to be weighted.

And you’re gonna do a lot of rucking and a lot of team drills. It’s very dynamic. And to do it with a team is awesome.

John: So I shouldn’t bring my hair dryer or a hair product or anything.

Mark: (laughing) Well, you could bring it. Can’t say what state it’s going to be the end.

All right, buddy. Thanks again.

All right everybody. That’s it. So thanks again for your support of Unbeatable Mind and the Unbeatable Mind podcast. Really appreciate you. Stay focused. Do the emotional work. Don’t be afraid of therapy. Just look at it as another form of coaching. And I’ll see you next time on the Unbeatable Mind podcast.


Divine out.

Join the discussion One Comment

  • The Podcast and training from Mark Divine and the Unbeatable mind are Great. Helping me to get past the past as well as PTS. I really appreciate you removing the “D” in PTS Mark, I was not broken, just needed to get back to being me. Your Podcast also gives me options that work for me. I use Equine therapy by working with and training horses (actually re-training myself) to be at peace and IN The Present moment with the horse. They are very honest and ensure that I listen.

    Thank you for your help!!!

    Thank you for being Amazingly Awesome and helping others get back to being.

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