In Art Of Coaching Podcast, Podcasts

These days there’s no shortage of well-meaning leadership, relationship, and financial advice. It seems at every turn we’re reminded, “Winners never quit”, “Do what you love and you’ll never work a day in your life”, and “You have two ears and one mouth for a reason”. 

…And while some sound pleasantly helpful, there are times this guidance is total B.S. 

On today’s show we take a stab at debunking and/or playing devil’s advocate with some of the cliché advice we blindly accept so we can better decide what’s worth following, what’s worth ignoring and what just needs an update.

Get ready, hot takes aplenty in this one!

Reminder: Don’t miss your chance to:

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Finally, thank you to our good friends at Momentous for always supporting us and helping us keep this podcast free from the beginning. Whether you’re an active person just looking to get your protein intake up, or you’re an elite athlete- they have the best tasting and cleanest supplements in the game. Go to and use code: BRETT15 for 15% off.


Ali Kershner  0:14  

Hey guys, it’s Ali before we roll into today’s episode, I want to issue a challenge, quit settling for mediocre feedback and the same professional development stuff you do every year. It’s not true development that covers the same topics again and again. And I only know this because this used to be me to write, I used to go to seminars and workshops and read only about the X’s and O’s of the profession. But the technical aspects of your job will only get you so far. So challenge yourself to get out of your comfort zone, get around other leaders who are willing to push themselves and practice the hard stuff. The stuff that deep down, you know, if you don’t work on code, without a doubt, cost of your job, your credibility and your relationships. 


So if you don’t know by now, I’m not really sure what rock you’ve been living under. But we actually have a workshop just like this that teaches you communication, interpersonal skills, power dynamics, office politics, influence tactics, all that good stuff, that’s really going to make a difference. And I’m not just saying that, you know, I first attended, as you know, somebody who was an attendee, and now I help run them. And I honestly can tell you that I’ve never heard of or seen anything like this, where you definitely spend the first front half, talking about the research and the science and the strategies of how to have better conversations and better communication. But then you get thrown into the fire. And you have to work your way through these scenarios with people in real time. And all the while you’re getting videotaped and evaluated, so that when you leave, you take something with you that you can have tangibly, and know that you have tools and strategies to you know, approach these situations when they will inevitably come up in your life in the future. 


So, you know, we have a whole slate of events already, you know, coming up for 2022. But I want to talk to you about our Austin Texas event, which will be March 12, through 13th. I’m talking to you about this one, because our super early bird pricing for Austin ends Sunday, December 12. That’s coming up really soon. And that’s your chance to get $200 off. So if you’ve been thinking about it, and you’re in the Midwest, in general, right, Austin is a great place to come and our friends at power athlete are actually going to be hosting us. So get your butt there, we have limited spots, and limited days left to get $200 off. So if you’re interested Make sure you do that before December 12. 


Okay, so that will be in March, the following weekend after that awesome event, we’re actually hosting a brand new type of workshop. And this is called the Brand Builder not to be confused with what I just said, Brand Builder. And this is basically a workshop for any type of leader that just wants to have more of an impact, right? They love their job. They love what they do. Or maybe they’re ready for something new either way, doesn’t matter what part of your career you’re at. This is like a think take me to Shark Tank. Me. It’s just like a collaboration of leaders and coaches. All together in a really cool facility. We got this immaculate, sort of we work type space with exposed brick, run it out. And this will be a place to really hone in on what makes you special. Clarify your message, how to get that across the people how to build what you want to build without a workshop or a website or maybe just a speaking career. I don’t know. It’s can be whatever you want it to be. But this is truly something unique and we’ve never done it before. If I was still coaching, this would be on my bucket list an absolute not missable event. So this will be again in March. But just like our awesome event there super early bird pricing, which is going to end December 18th. So if you want $300 off this one, go to And you’ll find out everything you need to know about the event because obviously I’m trying to talk quickly so I can get you guys into the episode. But don’t miss your chance to get $300 off this one which will be ending December 18. 


Okay, now, just to thank a few people who helped keep us and our content free. Okay, so LMNT is one of our new partners and we’re super excited about them. If you guys don’t know by now, I again, this is something I’m like what the heck, they’re giving you a free travel pack of their packets. If you just go to literally all you have to do is pay like $5 shipping and you’ll get an entire travel pack sent right to you. Now, I’m slightly embarrassed to say this but feel like it’s necessary. So I actually don’t love the taste of water, but I know I need to drink it obviously. I used to just use one of those like off brand meos you know like the sprays. Did you put in your water but I’m pretty sure that was mostly chemicals, maybe a little bit of sugar. Now that we partner with LMNT , I can add element which, you know, I feel so much better about and it tastes amazing. It’s all natural, no sugar, and they have a mango chili flavor, which if you know me as basically Alimas a flavor. So, again, check out Get a free travel pack. Don’t know what you’re missing if you don’t go there. 


Okay. Last but not least, are partners that Momentous so I actually feel kind of ironic saying this, but Momentous has been here longer than I have. So they’re like, OGs on the block, one of our greatest and longest partners, and they have truly the best protein tasting and just like cleanliness, and they make you feel great on the market, like so whether you just somebody that needs to make sure you get your protein intake or you’re an elite athlete like these guys, get it there. They were athletes, they are athletes and they just don’t want to take care of you. So check out moment and use code Brett br e t t 25 to get 25% off your order. Okay, I’m sure you’re tired of hearing my voice. So let’s get into today’s episode.


Brett Bartholomew  6:31  

Welcome to the Art of coaching podcast, a show aimed at getting to the core of what it takes to change attitudes, behaviors and outcomes in the weight room, boardroom classroom and everywhere in between. I’m your host, Brett Bartholomew. I’m a performance coach, keynote speaker and the author of the book conscious coaching. But most importantly, I’m a lifelong student interested in all aspects of human behavior and communication. I want to thank you for joining me and now let’s dive into today’s episode. 


All right, welcome back, everybody. I am here with my co host, Ali Kirshner. Ali, welcome back. 


Ali Kershner  7:06  

What’s up guys, it’s been a while 


Brett Bartholomew  7:07  

it has been a while. And if you guys haven’t heard Ali before, and her dulcet tones, Ali joined the company about a year ago. And Ally is the person that keeps me in check most of the time, she is our Director of creative strategy and so much more. And we like getting on here and kind of shaking it up every now and then think of it as a more engaging less pop trash morning show where we can talk about some deep topics, some things that are controversial, some things that are just informational, and kind of riff and go back and forth Ali, did I miss anything describing how we work when we’re on together?


Ali Kershner  7:41  

Oh, it’s pretty spot on and \it’s not just on the podcast. That’s basically how we interact at all times. It’s like half weird, half really intellectual, and half. Just shoot and shit.


Brett Bartholomew  7:52  

Absolutely. And I know you guys, you know, you heard the pre roll. And of course, you hear the sponsors that allow us to make this podcast and all the free content we give you able to happen. But we also like to do some shout outs of just loyal members of the AOC army and other things that we’re enjoying from time to time because people not only ask us what books to read, but they ask us what products you like what you use for productivity, things like that. But first off, I want to give a shout out to somebody that has been a very, very, very loyal supporter of ours and Kenny Duso. Kenny if you’re listening, and hopefully you are you’ve listened to so many you have invested in so many of our courses. And you have been a lifelong, really member of the art of coaching and apply this in so many ways. So shout out to you. 


Also, shout out to our friend Hayden. Hayden has invested in himself and like many of us, right like finances, and time and all these things aren’t always easy to come by. And Hayden from going to our apprenticeship to being a part of our Brand Builder. We just couldn’t be more appreciative. So we’d like to give shout outs if you guys want to shout out on the show. Well, it’s pretty simple support us Damn it, and then we’ll mention your name. And you’ll become cool by default ally, any other shout outs you think are notable before we get going?


Ali Kershner  9:05  

Oh, man, you know, I think there’s actually somebody that comes to mind a lot for me are the young coaches in particular that invest in us, I think Hayden technically falls into that category as well. But I’m just thinking of somebody like, TJ in our coalition group, who hasn’t even really had a full time job before now has been a student and still finds a way to make the finances happen. And that, to me is really inspiring because I don’t know if when I was in his position, you know, on a GA stipend, or even less, maybe just an intern. I was probably making excuses for why I didn’t have the money to invest in myself and something like this. So I think it’s really really cool to see the young coaches, not invest in just X’s and O’s, but also interpersonal stuff, coaching communication, power dynamics, the stuff that we’re talking about.


Brett Bartholomew  9:54  

for sure So Hayden Mitchell, Kenny Duso TJ and so many others. Thank you for being Part of this the random product shout out no these are not sponsors. No we don’t get paid. These are just quirky things whether you want to use them as stocking stuffers or you’re just a nerd like us, 


you know a while back Ali I gave a shout out to packers the twin line, right. But they’ve been superseded by GUM hell of a name for a brand here. GUM soft picks advanced if you want something that’s travel friendly and has a serrated rubber nub that you can use to keep your teeth clean at all times. And yes, I know how that sounds. Go with GUM Soft picks, hopefully one day they sponsor the show. But right now that’s, something that’s in my travel bag all the time you have an odd sponsor.


Ali Kershner  10:38  

Well, first of all, serrated nub sounds like an oxymoron. 


Brett Bartholomew  10:42  

My rap name, it’s my route name from high school serrated nubs.


Ali Kershner  10:46  

My it’s not so much of a random sponsor, but they are keeping me warm today. And somebody that we haven’t talked about at all, really, they’ve just kind of been a part of our family on the down low is defend, and they where’s it. They gave us these jackets and couple other things which are branded. And they are just an awesome company. I actually worked with them back when I was at Stanford. And they provided to all of our compression gear to our team, who absolutely love their stuff. And then I kind of stayed in touch with them. And they’ve just out of the kindness of their own hearts. They’ve become a low key supporter of our brand. And I appreciate them.


Brett Bartholomew  11:26  

Yeah, I should have said supporter because like I said people don’t. And here’s a little key to Yeti right. I guess it’s not weird that I have a yeti chest. I think it’s called the roadie next to us but the folks that Yeti, thank you for believing us. 


Alright, so getting into it. Today, Ali, and I wanted to do something about advice that, you know, is very commonly given in a lot of different areas of life, whether it’s professional advice, relationship advice, financial advice, or training advice. For those of you that are strength coaches, I know a lot of people ask me to continually give my thoughts on hot topics. It’s stuff that I’ve stayed away from one because I’m not just a strength conditioning coach anymore. But to there were years and years and years where I gave all my thoughts on everything training related. And it just seemed like it just the same arguments came up time and time again. So it just seemed like why are we doing this? It doesn’t matter. To some degree, people just like to argue and they want to say, hey, he said, she said, So Ali and I, are gonna be playing devil’s advocate. Now there’s something you guys need to know, some of this advice, or some of the things that we say might be great advice, right? Like, I’ll give you an example. You know, that whole idea of you have two ears and one mouth so that listening is important. Well, of course, listening is important. We have an entire podcast on that. But sometimes that advice doesn’t play. And we’ll get into that as an example on the show. So when we counter something, we’re not saying that we disagree with it at all times, we’re just trying to give a counter view because there’s so many books that talk about this stuff, these things are already very popular things like Hey, be humble or take care of yourself or leaders eat last, we’re just gonna have some fun and say, when might it not be true? Because in life, we always need to be able to stay open minded, have strong thoughts that are loosely held. And you know, it’s just something that if you’re not playing devil’s advocate, you can kind of be blindly loyal to a maxim that at some point in time, doesn’t serve you, Ali anything you want to add on that before we kick it off?


Ali Kershner  13:18  

No, I’m actually really excited for this one. Because as you know, we like thinking in the gray, and we like just looking at something from multiple different angles. And I think you in order to have a true opinion, that it takes work, right. And I think, unless you’re willing to poke holes in all sides of an argument, you can’t really have that opinion. So that’s what we’re trying to do here is like, let’s reexamine some things that we’ve just taken for granted. And see if maybe  we are missing something. And if we can reevaluate some things that have been taken for granted for so long


Brett Bartholomew  13:47  

spot on, and so it’s easy for you guys to follow. We’ve kind of talked about these categorically now. I’m a little nervous because I’m gonna be improvising Ali’s very organized, she’s got these locked in Ali, what category are we going to start with first?


Ali Kershner  14:02  

I think we should start with something that is known for it’s cliche advice, which is the leadership and work category.


Brett Bartholomew  14:11  

Wonderful. I have some that I want to talk about, but I’m gonna let you kick it off. Which one do you think is one of the biggest ones that could be? Yeah, typical advice, but needs to be rethought or countered? A little bit?


Ali Kershner  14:23  

Yeah. You know, I think this one’s kind of a softball. But something I just was was thinking about this morning, as I was taking some notes is the idea of like, don’t ever quit, don’t ever give up on something. And I think that the older I get, the more I realized that that to me seems bogus, because I think actually the smartest people know exactly when to quit. And I think like if you take on something new, it might stop working. If you are willing to put yourself in sort of a chaotic situation. You might find that it doesn’t work out and knowing When to stop following that path and kind of cut your losses or kill your darlings, as you’ve told me many times is great advice when writing a book, sometimes the best leaders and the best people who really push innovation know how to quit something.


Brett Bartholomew  15:17  

Yeah, no, I think this is something too, that we talked about in our valued courses. There’s this concept that most people are familiar with the sunk cost fallacy. And this whole idea of saying leaders never quit. Well, I mean, sunk cost fallacy. Think of somebody that you know, that maybe they opened a restaurant, right, and they’re so far in the red, and it’s just not working. And you know, their past three to five years in there, and the concept just not making sense. It’s akin to the gambler that’s like, Oh, I lost some money, and I’m gonna win it back. You know, you need to know when to cut your losses. And that goes in investing that goes in relationships that goes in anything.


And so yeah, leaders never quit. I mean, that’s an awful way to look at that sometimes leaders need to pause. Sometimes leaders need to retreat and learn to fight, because that’s what’s funny, right? This whole sometimes it pays to retreat and live to fight another day. Well, then what is quitting? Right? And if you never quit, and you just dig a hole and dig a hole and dig a hole, you have to ask yourself to what’s making a dig? Is it pride? Is it this sense of like lack of belief in yourself, you need to know when to cut your losses, plain and simple. So couldn’t agree more. If you don’t know when to quit? You will fall victim to the sunk cost fallacy and you will spend your time trying to dig yourself out of a very, very, very, very difficult whole.


Ali Kershner  16:32  

Yeah, I agree. I think I think we can leave it there short and tight.


Brett Bartholomew  16:35  

Cool. I’m gonna give one that somebody submitted via Twitter, because I did add some folks on Twitter now some of them did not provide explanation. So we’re gonna have to, you know, we might have to assume on some end of these, and we’re improvising here. I did like this one. He’s, funny. And he’s thoughtful with these things. Now, somebody had put Oh, no, is our friend Carmen bought. She put trust in the process? And then Tim Kettering says, Yeah, I mean, what even is the process? And how do we know that it’s trustworthy? Now, but let’s go with trust the process first, and I’m throwing this at you ad hoc. So do you think that’s cliche? And if so, why? And even if you don’t think it’s cliche, give me a devil’s advocate view of that.


Ali Kershner  17:16  

I think the way it stated is cliche. I think the process is trustworthy, when you have a deliberate process that you’ve thought through and you have iterated on, and you’ve innovated, and you’ve tried many different versions of but I think the process itself it’s not like so like in investing, which we’ll talk about later, I’m sure invest in you can put money in an index fund. And it’s going to grow like this has been shown in so many in so much research, and just over hundreds of years, maybe not hundreds of years, maybe 100 years, let’s say that. But with this, like, it’s not like you can just like set and just leave it like you would a crock pot. Like if you’re not like actively updating your process. I don’t think you can consistently trust it, I think that it works, and you then need to let things play out. But you can’t It’s not some passive thing that you can just like, let yourself succumb to this process.


Brett Bartholomew  18:21  

Yeah, I like that take I think another thing that I’d add to that is, you know, processes are created by people. And so you can trust the process. That’s fine. Because when I hear that I think of systems based thinking. And the issue is, is that systems fail when apathy prevails, right? If the people that create these systems, like you said, Aren’t updating it, or it wasn’t well thought out, or somebody’s not leading or guiding somebody through the process, right, we all know the importance of a mentor. So you know, you could say, well, what’s that process referring to? Well, the process of learning? Well, that all depends on the people guiding you through the process, you can have an excellent process, an excellent system. But if you don’t have people to keep others engaged in it, to explain it, or even like a clear, right, 


let’s say we hire somebody tomorrow, and we have this process of onboarding, well, that information goes nowhere, if that person isn’t guiding them through that, and also to think that somebody’s just going to be able to go through a process and come out on the other end, and they’re gonna think of prison reform, or we send people to prison. And you know, there’s aspects of that, like, do they always come out better? Well, what’s the process? Are they supposed to be reformed through that? You know, there’s so many examples of it that you can think of where systematization doesn’t really work. So I think that you got to have great people who have guided others through the process. They also need to make it clear what the process is for that whole start with why you can’t just dump somebody in and say, Well trust the process, because that’s kind of just blind. Alright, you’re up.


Ali Kershner  19:49  

I think the idea of work life balance is a total myth. I think anybody who’s actually had both work and life knows that and They do not play well in the sandbox and trying to balance them is actually more stressful than admitting that there is no balance. And rather, you know, I like to think of it as seasons, right, and to just kind of explain what that means, like there are seasons in the year or over the course of several years where work might take up more of your time. And you might need to really dive in. Say, you’re finishing a dissertation, that’s just going to be a work heavy part of your season of your life. But there are other seasons that you need to balance out. It’s like a weighted average over time, it should, you know, they maybe should come into some sort of balance, depending on what your values are. But there might be another season where you’re having a baby and your family needs to take precedent. So I think that trying to bring these things into balance on a daily basis is a totally bogus. I don’t think it can happen. I’ve tried to make it happen. It’s not super successful. So I’m, what do you think, Brett?


Brett Bartholomew  20:57  

Yeah, I’m not I don’t have a ton to add to that unless it was just to be performative. I’m the  same, right? It’s seasons of life. Another thing that we talked about in, valued, and you know, there’s an example that I’ll give a different application of it, I think, you know, there are some times where I’m really good. Generally, I tried to be really good at keeping in touch with friends and just reaching out. But these past two years have been a little bit, I probably haven’t been as sharp. And that’s mainly because I’m in the throes of my next book and trying to get this doctorate done. And being a dad and COVID, and obviously, trying to grow art of coaching. And so, you know, I always try to help them. Like I put out a tweet the other day that said, hey, sometimes when it seems like a friend falls off the face of the earth, give them a little bit of grace, they might be in just a season of their life where they haven’t forgotten about you, they just need to have their head down. And I think you know, me going through this period has reminded me of that when there were some times that I thought, Man, I haven’t heard of this person heard from this person forever. And now I just hope that some of my friends Forgive me, if there’s times where I’m a little slow to respond. I’m very easily distracted. I am in probably a season of my life that is akin to the Peloponnesian War, in terms of trying to just allocate resources are scarceability compared to all other things coming at me, there’s hordes and hordes of obstacles, and I’m just trying to channel them all through the hot gates, and that, I’m susceptible to being distracted by anybody. 


So yes, without a doubt, there’s no such thing as true balance. I get what people mean by that they’re looking for harmony. I think that there’s just times where you got to be forthright and say, Hey, this is a hectic season for me, I may not be as responsive as I usually am, or I may not be as blank as I usually am. But you’re in my thoughts. And I’m trying to do the best I can and just meta communicate about it. If you just meta communicate and let people know what you’re going through, most people are going to be forgiving. 


Let’s pull another one up from the Twitter, the Twitter. And it’s tough because I’ve got to discern which one. This is one that I don’t even know what I’m going to say as I’m reading it. Panther flow, without any kind of user name or any kind of context said, he believes what could be he she however they identify repetition is the mother of skill. They believe that that? That that is something that they disagree with, or it’s overrated repetition is the mother of skill. What do you think? Or do you want me to go first on this one?


Ali Kershner  23:20  

No, I mean, I don’t really know how to interpret this, because I don’t really have much context. But I think that’s the fun of it. You know, in my last year of collegiate strength and conditioning, I was really diving into a lot of different learning styles, autonomy, they things like that. And, you know, something that is said a lot is repetition without repetition, is you know, the best way to build skill. And if you truly want somebody to learn something, the it’s sure a skill is built through repetition over time. But if those repetitions are all the same, true learning does not exist, or is not happening. And so I think, yes, depending on how you’re defining your repetitions, and what that looks like. It’s just like, yes, you need a foundational, like, if you’re doing an agility drill, right? Like, initially, you need that structure, maybe you’re running out to a cone cutting, right? It’s very structured. But if you just do that same drill, repetition, repetition, repetition, you’re building the skill of running out to the cone and turning right, you’re not building the skill of agility, which will come from doing that with multiple cone patterns, and then taking away the cones and having them react to a clap and then having them react to a defender, right. So ultimately, the repetitions have to look all different, because that’s the only way to get closer to true performance.


Brett Bartholomew  24:42  

Yeah, there’s something really very relevant. We were just out in Park City visiting my friend Carl coward, and he’s coming back from a knee injury and you brought a very specific it’s almost eerie point because I didn’t tell you about this. Carl was doing just a box agility drill. And for anybody that’s not a performance nerd. Don’t worry. The idea is For cones right in this case, he was sprinting, from one to two shuffling from two to three, backpedaling from three to four, and then doing a carioca and just a variety of movements, right? Because it’s not worth getting into. And Carl was kind of going through this in a sloppy way. And he felt like, you know, I’m not really stable on my previously injured leg. As I go through this. Now, I wasn’t his coach through this, I’m visiting him, we’re at another gym, great group of guys, you know, so this has nothing on any coaches, these guys are awesome. But Carl, just Carl’s a try hard. guy, he’s just going to go faster and faster and faster. And I kind of caught him and to your point, he’s just trying to rehearse this change of direction drill, there’s no agility there. And so we went through some things. And then I said, let’s see how you do if I just have your shuffle. And every time I clap, you change direction. So he’d start shuffling to the right, I clap, he goes to the left club again, go to the right, you get the idea, just as you mentioned, well, as we introduce that cognitive load, it made Karl slow down, he slowed down, he did better at dropping his center of gravity, his base, and I said, Well, how that feel. And he’s like, Well, yeah, better. And I was able to videotape it. And I go, I know this with Karl. Karl just wants to attack everything. And so introducing cognitive load slows it down. So if Carl just would have gone through those drills, the the change of direction drills, as you alluded to, in perpetuity, you just kind of keep feeding into dysfunction, but then making them solve a movement problem, he had to become a little bit more thoughtful, a little bit more discerning, and slow down. So yeah, all repetitions aren’t created equal. 


I think of another application is the sign behind me on the resilience wall. For anybody that hasn’t seen the podcast on YouTube. You know, we have a wall in our house. That is, there’s jerseys of different athletes that I’ve coached over the years that have had to overcome different things. One at alcoholism, one, bipolar disorder, everybody’s got their own thing. And the goal is to show my son, hey, you know, talent, or any sort of privilege is not enough in life, you’re gonna have to overcome some demons, and those demons make you better. So above that, to kind of paint the theme of the wall, if you will, it says smooth seas don’t make skilful sailors. And I believe in that I think that trauma and having to confront your dark side is great. Now even where I’d reverse that one, to kind of move to the next cliche advice, is to agree if somebody is learning to sail, you do need to get them out on a smooth See, they need to understand how the boat operates, how they ship the basic controls, right, you can’t just throw somebody in there and say, trust the process as the tidal wave crushes over, you know, the top of it. So just again, alternative viewpoints with even things that we do enjoy and agree with, so that you guys can have better discussions around these things. Anything else you want to touch on the leadership standpoint?


Ali Kershner  27:42  

No, I kind of want to move into the next one. 


Brett Bartholomew  27:43  

There is one I do I kind of sorry, I sabotage on that one. And I’m actually gonna, you know, look at Jeffrey Pfeffer. He’s from the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He’s got a book called Leadership vBSs. No free shout outs, I don’t know Jeffrey Pfeffer, you know, we’re gonna try to get him on the show. And if he doesn’t get on the show, then we’re going to cancel this out. We’re not going to promote his book. But I did. I did appreciate this book, because he talks about some things. Let’s see which one, he talks about the whole, let’s the leaders eat last kind of one. And in his book, and of course, I’m paraphrasing. He says, Well, no, this just, this isn’t true. And he alludes to the fact that you look at most CEOs, and most organizations are most people in the C suite. Not only do they not quote unquote, eat last, let’s say the company goes under, they’re getting golden parachutes, they’re getting by out, they usually have perks that nobody else, even at the middle management level or higher management level gets, they don’t eat last, right? They can have stock options, they have better benefits, you know, and so that doesn’t always happen. You know, you think of let’s think of the University of Alabama does Nick Saban eat last? You know, just do you think that he’s the last one he might get that catered to his office? We don’t know. 


And so this idea, and the only reason I bring this up because I remember I was at a conference once and it was family style buffet and the host of the conference. Good guy, right? But I was trying to let him go in front of me at line and he’s like, no, no leaders eat last. And I kind of like looked at him to be like you for real. Just jump in front of me. You know what I mean? And he’s like, No, I’m dead serious. That’s something I take very seriously. I’m like, I don’t think that that phrase literally meant that you have to eat last. I think that phrase really means just think of other people before you think of yourself in most circumstances. But there are some people that really take that at face value. And another reason it’s fake, or just faux is, here’s the thing, an empty sack doesn’t really stand up well on its own. And we’ve talked about the whole idea that if you’re in an airplane and the cabin pressure changes, you got to put your own mask on first, before helping other people. 


And it’s been something Ali that I think is really turned me off to a lot of leadership books probably over the past half decade. It’s very martyrdom based. It’s very, I almost want to say and I’m sorry if this You know, rubs people the wrong way. But if you’re really out of your feelings, you know what I mean? It has this overly kind of religious feel to it. You know, now I believe in God, and I believe in a higher power. And I pray at night and whatever your beliefs or your beliefs are, it’s that’s for you, right? But this whole idea of trying to like just have this martyrdom base persona, that you’re somehow an elevated person. If you’re like, you know, no, no, no, you go ahead, I’m not going to do this, I’m never going to serve myself, I need to be selfless. I just think that stuff has been very overplayed. I don’t know who you can serve, if you don’t take care of your own selfish needs. And you know what, to be selfish actually means that you have self and you recognize those needs. So those aren’t all the thoughts of Jeffrey Pfeffer. He just kind of goes into the idea of why that’s not real in massive organizations. But yeah, I just don’t care for the martyrdom that’s been over the top and leadership culture in the past half decade or so.


Ali Kershner  30:55  

Well, that to me, that always felt from the wrong person that feels very performative. And you know, you can it’s totally depend on the context, right. And you could see why a leader would want to eat last and it shows people where their priorities are at, but sometimes it is performative. And that’s where it really bugs me. I mean, like, this is an aside, but maybe it’s kind of funny. You know, like how you’re at your family’s house, or you had a guest house, and you’re like you said, line up to get in line for the buffet and somebody says, you go first. And people were like, oh, no, it’s a song and dance like, no, no, like, I can’t go first. You go first. Right? And it’s, it’s very polite, like, literally, like, some alien would come down and be like, What are these humans doing? And I’m always the one that’s like, Yeah, I’ll go Yeah, sure. Because I almost feel like it’s rude or to say no, like, they’re inviting you. There you are the guests in their house. They’re inviting you to go first. Just so yes. Yeah. Make it?


Brett Bartholomew  31:54  

And the context matters, I think of when we do the Brand Builder event is that in March, 


Ali Kershner  32:00  



Brett Bartholomew  32:00  

Okay. So for that anybody that purchases the executive ticket, we’re hosting a dinner at my house, right? Because that’s just kind of like how we like to do things, small business. And we’re going to cook for everybody. And that circumstance, of course, I’m going to eat last. But it’s not because, you know, I view myself as some leader that needs the last. It’s because I’m welcoming these people into my home, you know, and so I’m going to serve them food, I want to make sure they’re comfortable. That’s just me as an entertainer. And as a host wanting to be polite. It’s not so I can go to bed that night with some self righteous kind of pat on the back and be like, I eat last because these are my people. And I’m serving them. No, they’re in your home. They’re in your home. So yeah, I think we hit that when that was just something that I’ve always kind of had a bad taste in my mouth. It’s saccharin. It’s very saccharine when people do that the wrong way. All right, let’s go to the next category.


Ali Kershner  32:46  

Yeah, so the next category we talked about covering was relationships. And you know, this could be with your family, with your significant other with your friends, it could be anybody. But I personally took this as like non work relationships. And, you know, one, that sticks out to me that I’ve really had to rethink because I used to really believe this one is never go to bed angry. And I think the fixer in me wants to have that be true, right, because I really do hate when a problem goes unsolved. But I’ve also seen it go really poorly, in which I almost force a resolution, and then it’s a fake resolution. And, you know, sometimes, and I’ve been the same way, sometimes you just need space, and you just need time to let things sift to the bottom, you know, let things kind of calm down. And unfortunately, sometimes that needs to happen overnight. But that’s not a bad thing, necessarily. And I think it’s actually a really mature healthy sign and a relationship when you can accept that the conflict still needs to occur. And it’s not over. There’s still some things to be worked out. But you need rest.


Brett Bartholomew  33:59  

Yeah, I mean, I think and I have to ask, like, honest question, right? Don’t answer this. Just and I know you wouldn’t put on the show for the people listening. Did we talk about this when we thought of the concept of doing this episode, did I? Because it was almost eerie. This was something I wanted to talk about that I mentioned this to you. Yeah. So in the shower the other night because Liz and I did go to bed angry one night, and I’m like, it’s much more important that you don’t wake up angry. Right. So to your point, I completely agree. You might go to bed angry, like Why force a resolution, sometimes you need rest. And most of the time we are angry because we do need rest. The key is not to let it like it’s another thing when you wake up that next day, and anybody that’s been through a really bad breakup knows that feeling where like, you wake up, and then all of a sudden, you remember that you just broke up with that person. Or you wake up and you remember that. You know, I remember last Father’s Day. This is kind of sad. You know, we lost one of our dogs, our rescue dog, and you know, you wake up and you wonder if that was real, then you’re like, oh, and that there’s nothing worse than that feeling of waking up and then getting hit With that, like reality of like, oh, yeah, so I think it’s actually okay to go to bed angry sometimes just try not to wake it’s far worse to wake up angry. 


Yeah, I mean, because yeah, I couldn’t agree more. I think that’s one of the top relationship ones I’ve always had a problem with. And it’s actually a gift to Liz has. Even if we go to bed angry Liz will wake up and sometimes it’s like Drew Barrymore 51st dates. She’s like, good mood. Just like, no, no, don’t you remember? No. But then she’s like, she’s so damn happy. I can’t be mad anymore. So yeah, I think that’s a huge one. I’m glad you brought that up.


Ali Kershner  35:35  

Yeah, I think it also plays into another one that I was thinking about, which is, conflict isn’t bad. And I think I’m not sure that I ever believed the conflict that you should never have conflict in a relationship. But I steered heavily away from it, I was like, Okay, I get that you might have conflict with a friend, I get that you might have conflict with a parent. But I felt like conflict. You know, like, I never want to have conflict with my significant other. And like, I always thought that that was a bad sign, like that was a red flag, not meant to be together, like whoa, like, things are going poorly. But I think that’s the only way you grow is conflict in anything. And having the skills to work through a conflict is, it’s actually one of the coolest things is when you start in a really big disagreement or miscommunication and you work your way through it. And at the end of it, like I think we’ve talked about this, it’s like at the end of it, you’ve let everything out, and you’ve kind of like laid your soul bare on the floor. And then you’re like, that was we needed that that was good.


Brett Bartholomew  36:42  

Ya know that that’s an I don’t want to be redundant. So you know, you gotta cross more wires. Sometimes it creates sparks. I think conflict is one of the healthiest things you can do. Of course, I’m biased, right? We do a lot of role playing in our live workshops. But I mean, I think of even the athletes that I coach or executives that I’ve worked with, or anything like that. And same with you I know we’ve talked about this is sometimes you got to have that moment. I mean, even just on our recent coalition call, right, we have somebody who is a great member of the group and deals with some imposter phenomenon. And he was saying that he kind of feels alone sometimes. And then somebody in the group was trying to relate to him be like, Yo, like, I’ve had moments like that. And he like, didn’t want to hear it. So I had to come down hard on him and just be like, hey, timeout, you said you feel alone, sometimes in the way you feel about x. Now somebody in the group is not only sympathizing and not doing so performatively. They’re trying to help you understand that man, you’re just in your own head a little bit, and you’re succumbing to the noise. Don’t not listen to that. And like I kind of had to take a harsh tone. 


Now thankfully, people know our brand. They know that we’re always just, we’re the type of coaches that are respectful kick in the butt. And we don’t do it to put on a show. It’s just, we’re going to be real with you. We’re going to be raw with you because nobody’s got time to waste on that stuff. And that ended up being a great call. You know, he texted me afterwards and said, Yo, I’ve been told that before, it was nice to kind of hear it out of your mouth. Oh, like, Thanks for keeping me honest with that. And conflict is a very, very, very healthy thing. Can I throw one out there? 


Ali Kershner  38:07  

Yeah, please. 


Brett Bartholomew  38:07  

Okay. And this is a tough one to choose. I’m tempted to go with time heals all wounds. And I almost wanted to go with that. Because again, we agree with this for the most part, but there’s a lot of grumpy old people. So Time doesn’t heal all wounds, I will say this one soulmates exist. I’m gonna take some heat from this, right, but there’s 8 billion or just about a billion people in the world. And this idea that everybody only has one person, there’s only one person in the world that you could possibly be compatible with. I mean, in people’s hearts, you know, that’s just not the case. Now, of course, you might find your person. And you know, like, we both have our people, and we love them dearly. And we’re committed to them, right? But you know, heaven forbid, if something happened to me, I would still want Liz to be happy. Now. It doesn’t mean I would try to not, you know, I’d throw some wrenches into that plan and put like trial by fire, if I’m watching above, if I’m doing a harp lesson, you know, on the cloud, I don’t like this guy, I’m gonna be like, Man, I’m gonna do this, you see, can you do that, but I still want my wife to be happy. I don’t want her let alone my son, to feel like they’ve got to go through life entirely on their own, especially if again, I’m knocking on wood, something were to happen to me early. 


And I would hope the same. So I’m not saying it’s not painful. And I’m not saying there’s not people that, you know, don’t have a special part of you. And of course, if you lost a loved one, they’re never going to leave you. I’m not saying that. But I’m just saying at face value, we know that there’s more than one person you’re going to be compatible with. And that is a targeted message. That’s a targeted message to some folks that you know are going through that I even remember as a grad assistant, I lost somebody that meant a tremendous amount to me in a relationship, you know, not they didn’t pass on right but and I think about that, and for the longest time I’m like, Oh my God, I don’t know if somebody’s gonna do this and then you find somebody that’s a better fit. There are many You need different types of fit in your life. And while you may never get that one sit back, you will find somebody else that brings other joy to your life. So the whole one person the rest of your life soulmates. That’s all. And if you don’t find that you’re not going to be happy, I think is awful advice.


Ali Kershner  40:15  

Yeah, and I totally agree with you, I think that we’re actually so much more similar as humans than we think. And so finding your quote unquote soulmate, could happen multiple times over because there are going to be a lot of people that probably are very compatible with you whether or not you actually find this person. If you think about it, right, like, okay, inherently As humans, we all share a lot of the same DNA, then you boil it down to something about your identity that’s really important to you. Maybe it’s that you love to surf. So then you’re in the surfing community, and then you’re like, Oh, my God, this person is a human, and they like to surf. And they like breakfast burritos. They’re my soulmate, right? Like we I think we can like, kind of play ourselves into finding soulmates just by finding people that are really compatible to us. And then we realize, oh, humans are like good humans, are more similar and common than I think we we think that they are. But I don’t believe in one person. Certainly, I think there are many, many, many people and every person that you’re with teaches you something about yourself. And so I yeah, I personally think it’s important to have many different types of relationships growing up. And to experience good ones and bad ones and, what you like and what you don’t like, because that’s the only way that you kind of narrow down on that. Same with jobs. Like if you only ever have one job. You’re really bad for those people. Yeah, because you have no idea what’s out there.


Brett Bartholomew  41:46  

No question. I think behind the scenes day in the life, I told you this when I think I told the coalition group, I was so interested in this experience, I started a DoorDash account the other day, like a Dasher account, and I went out and I did DoorDash for like two hours. I wanted to experience what that was like My neighbor did it. And he was telling me about like, what is that like? Because I’m again, I’m so fascinated by social dynamics. And I know that people can be quirky and weird and all this. And so I was just I told my wife, I’m like, I want to go make 50 bucks real quick. And she’s like, doing what I go DoorDash and she’s like, are you insane? I go, gotta go. And so it took me to crazy places in the city. And I’m trying to like, over communicate on the app, that will be the change, you want to see I have some if we do DoorDash right. There’s some people that are like play, and they just throw it all over the the porch, or, you know, I’ve had spilled Chinese food and all that. So I had to go to Dairy Queen to pick up for some family of like, 80 right, there’s like 20 cheeseburgers. There were Frosties. what I found out is there’s a whole subculture of DoorDash people that have like carts and carrying trays and their whole car setup. I’m not ready for that a lick. So I’m like, Hey, I’m at Dairy Queen. I’m going to be at your house shortly. What can I do to make this great? And they’re like, do just get it here. So I go to Dairy Queen and like Steven, who just you know, hit puberty, he’s behind the desk. He’s like, hey, sorry, our other guy didn’t come in for work today. We’re a little behind. This is my first order. So I’m texting later. My guess what? They’re a little short staffed. Don’t worry. I’m gonna make sure they get you something free. She’s like, cool. So I’m like I need a free frosty and he’s like, I don’t know if I could do that. I go Yeah, he can’t I’m on DoorDash so make me report you that hooked up with a free frosty. So I’m on my way I got my heated seats on to keep the hamburgers warm. Got this carrying tray with the 


Ali Kershner  43:39  

mounting the Frosties


Brett Bartholomew  43:40  

No, no because that’s in the side Ali, come on with it. And then so I get there and they’re like live out in the cut. And so I’m like, Hey, I got extra napkins some of the Frosties we’re melting a little bit because there’s a long drive I gave you I got you utensils and by the way there’s a gift certificate for a free frosty in there. Hope you had a great day. And then I still got like a $2 tip and I’m like oh my god. And that’s the other thing that I think is kind of BS advice. If you work hard What is it if you work hard enough you can always achieve your goals you know? No, because it always depends on other people this lady got a free frosty all this warm hamburgers and I over communicated I got a $2 Tip


Ali Kershner  44:20  

two things First of all next week when I’m out there visiting you guys can we go on a ride along 


Brett Bartholomew  44:25  



Ali Kershner  44:26  

Okay, cool. And then the second thing I was gonna say is I was doing research for this episode because I can’t not research right even if it’s something like this which is just like hot takes and things that are bogus advice. Those reading this forum that was the best advice that actually sucks and I don’t remember which website this was but this one girl had written up like her 25 Top things and one of them was what you just said it was if you work hard enough, the money will come and she it literally under each one I had like a full blurb of like why this was false. Under this one, she said No, it’s not just asked my dad. I Just like lost it. I was like, apparently Your dad has worked really hard and the money. God 


Brett Bartholomew  45:09  

It has not come? Yeah, that’s a tough one. All right, let’s go. Let’s go to the next one.


Ali Kershner  45:14  

All right. So finance, I have one. But sometimes I believe sometimes I don’t believe I can’t say I’ve been on both sides of this truly yet. So I would love your opinion. But I think it’s very common advice. Maybe not so much these days that you shouldn’t lease or rent, if at all possible, you should buy a car or should buy a house. And I think that maybe once was true. I’m not so sure that it’s the best advice now, given the way that things operate, how fast the world moves, and the importance of things like being liquid. And I don’t know, you can speak probably to this more as like both a car and a house owner, I am a car. I’m a car owner, a house leaser. But like, I know that when you buy a house, it is not cheaper. Always. I mean, just like in the sense of obviously, the the mortgage seems to be more expensive, but like, it’s like you’re fixing stuff constantly. Like I don’t know, what’s your take on this?


Brett Bartholomew  46:20  

Yeah, this is where you and I need to find somewhere in the annals of my Google Drive. We did a whole I did a conversation with my father who had been a licensed while he still is licensed financial adviser for over 40 years. And that was why we put him in the valued course. And he talked about all kinds of things like this. And this was before I started a podcast. And so I think it was just audio recorded with like a lav mic. It was like conversations with dad. And I was gonna release it one day. And I yeah, I need to look for it. But it admittedly, so I’m not an expert on this. This isn’t financial advice for anybody. But, you know, I know a couple things, right? There are home tax deductions and those things, obviously, a deduction reduces how much you owe, but only if you itemize those things. And it depends on how you file and all these things. Right. So there are tax breaks for buying a house. Of course, like mortgage interest, you can deduct, you know, the interest you pay on, I think it’s up to like $750,000 of mortgage debt. So it’s like, when I looked this up one time, it was like 350, or 370 5000, if married, filing separately, right. And so, anyway, the point is, is you can look at deducting mortgage interest, there’s, you can deduct state and local property taxes, real estate taxes, all these things. So there are tax benefits to owning a home for sure. 


Now, it depends on the time of your life. So we had to had a starter home when we were in Phoenix, I lived in apartments for a very, very long time. I lived in closet like apartments, you know, the house that I live in now is our first true real home financial investment. And obviously, the markets really good right now. But I just think that you have to look at the home expenses that you can claim, I think it’s also different now of you, we have a home office, like we run out of coaching out of our house. So we do have a home office deduction. I’ve trained athletes out of my house,  I can deduct to that square footage, you know, but you could also do that, like if you have an apartment, you run a business out of your apartment and so I think at the end of the day, you just have to look at what are your financial responsibilities? How well are you using deductions? I think that where some of this goes into, and I’m not changing the topic, but I think everybody just needs to learn more about that in general, even when we talk to our audience, which most of most folks in coaching are cash strapped. That’s just how it is. It’s like education and anything else. But when I hear coaches just be like, Oh, I can’t really invest in Con Ed this year, hey,  my university or my employer won’t reimburse it. I always just kind of cringe at that, because I don’t think they understand that they can actually deduct that stuff, especially if they have an LLC, which anybody could start. And there’s people that willingly will not whether it’s a house or whether it’s a course or anything else, something that they need to do their job, because they don’t know enough about deductions, they end up just paying that to the government. So not only are they not doing something that could improve their financial or intellectual well being or professional well being, they’re just giving that money away at the end of the year anyway. So think about that being penny wise dollar foolish. You have to look out like where do I think I’m saving money when in reality the government’s taking it at the end of the year. 


So my short answer is if you want to Yes, it is bad advice. If you’re not willing to be somebody that wants to look at these deductions, you’re taking account of moving expenses, tax credits, the area that you’re moving into, you need to know what comps are in the market. Otherwise you could buy a bad home and buy a bad time. I got we went to Phoenix the other day to look at property. We looked at property a number of other places the housing market is 40% higher in Boise where one of my friends moved at 60% higher, but then we got into another discussion of that idea of like well, the best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is today. So I do think that there’s benefit to owning a home. But I think that you have to really look and say, Am I just doing it to do it if you’re like, if you’re just gonna buy a home because you think it gives you tax benefits, awful idea, right? Like, you should keep your living expenses lean and all those things until you know, there’s an actual need for you to quote unquote, upgrade or take on that additional financial cost isn’t otherwise it’s not an asset. 


Now, within that, sorry, this is long winded. I don’t agree with that traditional like Dave Ramsey advice and Dave Ramsey. He’s got a very specific audience he’s talking to so I know this could spurn an entirely different debate, I am not talking to people. I am not talking about what I’m about to say next, for people that have like, bad credit or in massive amounts of debt. I’m not talking about that. But this whole idea that you shouldn’t buy anything that doesn’t can’t be paid with cash. I do think that for most people that are not in those kinds of situations that I just mentioned, that’s bad advice, because there is good debt, there is good debt that you can be in. But that’s not the question you asked. So I’m not going to get into that.


Ali Kershner  51:04  

No. And I’m glad that you went there. Because I think it’s all relative, right? I’m just saying like, for the people that say, you should always buy you should always buy I disagree? I think it depends on the person. It depends on where you live, it depends on how long you’re gonna stay there depends on, like you said, are you gonna do the work to really figure out how to make this, you know, the tax deductions work in your favor? What do you want to manage? I mean, like, I have a friend who leases his car, and he doesn’t do it. Because, I mean, he knows that he’s losing money on the car, certainly, but he doesn’t want to deal with, you know, repairs, right? He’d rather every two years get to trade that in and get a new car because guess what, he has a lot on his plate, and he doesn’t have the time to go take the car to a dealership or to go get fixed. Right. So that makes sense for him to lease. And I totally understand that. That sentiment as well. Because time is money.


Brett Bartholomew  51:58  

Yeah, spot on. That was a good one. Thanks for bringing that up. 


Ali Kershner  52:02  

Yeah, what you got? 


Brett Bartholomew  52:04  

Let’s see, we’re on financial, I think I would have hit it with the whole kind of, you know, there’s no good debt only pay in cash. And again, I’m not getting into with the Dave Ramsey folks that believe that that’s a very specific population. But there is there is good debt, there is good debt and people that don’t build credit. Like if you never have a credit card, you never put things on credit or like you’re never gonna have like, you’re ruining your borrowing power. Now, some people would say, well, you should never have to do that you should never spend, you know, outside of your means or whatever I think that the coaching profession is not the best people to go to for advice on economics. Generally, most people in coaching don’t always have super healthy attitudes towards money. Because there’s just cognitive dissonance there where, you know, since we don’t make a lot of it, sales and business and a lot of those things are vilified, when in reality, all those things are requisite for not only problem solving, but a healthy financial system and just basic economics. 


So I think that’s the one that gets me the most, I think the other thing that I had an argument with a buddy of mine, one of my best friends who argument has said tongue in cheek, he’s a big believer in, you know, you should never have a credit card, we make money off our credit cards, because we use the benefits. There was one it’s not around anymore, but it was called City prestige. And it was a crazy annual fee. It was like $450 annual fee, right? Which is stupid for most purposes. But here’s where we made money off of it. They had a perk that if you spent three nights at a hotel, they’d pay the fourth night plus taxes for you. And so I use this for business. There were times where I was running workshops doing this and I’d pay that one year we made $2,500 off of that card, because we didn’t have to pay for that I was gone two weeks one time. And so then I was gone in another country for another week and a half and another one and so I went down a very deep rabbit hole of I had five credit cards, right? I think three of them had no annual fee to did. And I had a rotate I had a list of like how I could manage those perks. We made boatloads of cash relative right boatloads of cash, more than not like if the annual fees totaled $1,200. I was at least making 5000 off of because you use the perks, use the perks all the time. And we do the same thing even with what it’s around Christmas time. When we’re recording this when I buy gifts for my family, I go through Delta SkyMiles let’s say I’m buying you something from Nike, right? If you go to Delta SkyMiles shopping, it might be four points for every dollar you spend on Nike, right? And so all of a sudden you’re gonna spend that money 


anyway. So I think people just have to look at things efficiently. The other thing and this is very much my own opinion this might not age well. Right? This might not age well. I understand my risk people that are completely not wanting to look at cryptocurrency I do think that for sure like the shibui new coins all that stuff is dumb if you’re just getting into like a coin to like diamond hands to the moon hold on for dear life. Let’s pump up the price. but like I do invest probably 3% of my portfolio on blockchain type things like Aetherium, or like Cardano. Now I understand that’s massive risk. So I am not again, not telling anybody else to do that. But if the world doesn’t think that some form of decentralized currency, and that’s my thesis of this piece of advice, if you don’t think something, decentralized is going to be more and more important, and more and more prevalent, you’re wrong. I mean, there’s billions of dollars in market cap in this. And we’re seeing inflation go crazy in this country right now. And that doesn’t hit the crypto space as hard. Now, Kryptos got much more wild fluctuations. And these are five to 10 years until we know what’s going to settle. But I think at the very least, if you have like 200 bucks, just put a little bit in something that you’ve researched a good bit. So you can get experiential knowledge of knowing what this is. You just need to people that are staying away from it. Because they think my mom, great example, Mom, I hope you’re listening. And my mom’s like, isn’t that stuff used in scams and by criminals? I’m like, well, guess what so is regular cash. But if you look at this stuff that’s based on blockchain. And that’s why I like Cardano is they can track where these things go, just learn about it, just learn a little bit, it’s not going to hurt you. So there’s a really, really hot take.


Ali Kershner  56:17  

First of all, I don’t think your mom sounds like that so much. She’s listening. I got your back. Yes. I’m really quick on that. On that note, I think something that I’ve heard a lot of personal finance people say is that pay off all your debt, that’s the first thing that we’re all your money should go is to paying off all your debt. I actually disagree with that, I think you should definitely make payments towards your debt. But I think that you absolutely need to be investing simultaneously, even if it’s just like you said, $20 $100 a month. Experiment a little bit. But I mean, put, I mean, let’s just say this, if you’re only investing a little bit, don’t experiment, but if you have any sort of extra cash coming in, and you can afford to put some money in an index fund, yeah, just like land, let that grow. I mean, it is crazy, I didn’t really know much about investing at all. And during COVID, I really got into it a lot more. And it’s so true. I mean, simple, works simple. 


The KISS principle, keep it simple, stupid. It works. And you don’t need to pay off all of your debt before you start investing, you can do both. And it because you’re compounding that investment, you’re going to see him put so many more returns on that. And then if you were to wait 10 years, until you’re done paying off all your debt, and then start,


Brett Bartholomew  57:43  

that’s a critical one. I really hope people listen to you on that one. Because that was something that I used to believe in until my dad really kind of schooled me on it. And he’s like, no, because we were like, looking at paying off our mortgage and these things, you know, when my book had hit, and I was my dad was like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, do you know and that again, goes do things that are deductions and peace like that let your money compound, otherwise, you’ll never catch up, you’ll just never catch up.


Ali Kershner  58:09  

Cool. All right, the last one, and this is one that I actually learned from you. So credit to you. I and many coaches, I think feel this way, I used to think that a salary was the gold standard for how you should look at your compensation in terms of like, what are they paying, look at number one, the bottom line salary that you can make? And then you know, obviously benefits on top of that. But you know, after our discussions in our negotiations, especially early on, you know, you pushed things like getting commission on sales and things like that, and equity in the company as components of compensation. And I think I bought initially because I saw a lower salary number and it scared me. And I was it’s very small minded to think that way and I now can see that because I mean commission and equity are worth so much more in the long term. It’s all about playing the long game truly.


Brett Bartholomew  59:12  

Yeah, yeah. Well, and I want to give the audience context on this again, Ali and I both started out in strength and conditioning. And for those unfamiliar with it because it can be a niche field is you know, you’re required to do unpaid internships. I did two unpaid internships both six months a pop. I did a graduate assistantship where yes, my master’s got paid for as part of me working as a full time strength coach, but you only get a stipend of about $10,000. So I didn’t ever get my first paycheck until I was about 25 26. And my first paycheck was about 30. I think I made about 35,000 a year. And then it was 42,000 a year until I don’t remember what age and I’d rather not, you know, somebody tried to play the gotcha game and be like, well, I dug into the dark web and found your financial statements. So I made 42,000 for quite a while and then I think the most I ever made in salary as The strain coach was like 60, some odd 1000. And that was when I lived in LA. And so California money as you know, that’s really about like 30 grand. 


So I never really, you know, there was a time where I had an opportunity to go to the NFL that would have paid about $275,000 a year for that role. There, I had already said yes to another opportunity at the time. So I didn’t end up taking that. The point is, it’s not a perfect, it’s kind of a feast or famine profession, you have people that generally are gonna make anywhere from 35 to 80. And then all of a sudden, there’s massive leaps to where people can make 200 to 800. But it’s very, very niche. It’s very, very small. There’s not that many folks. And so, it is a field that is very much based around salary. And people have very conflicting attitudes towards money, compared to my uncle, you know, Craig, who was a commodities broker for a long time, I remember when I told him I was going for my first interview, you know, he said, Oh, make sure you get a company card and, and floor seats in whatever city I’m like, yo, yo, yo, this is not that profession. I go think education, meets, coal mining, that’s kind of the culture. 


And so, bottom line is, we hear this, it’s not about the money, it’s not about the money. But then out of the other side of coaches mouths, they say, you know, I just feel stuck, and I’m not valued and all these things. And it’s because a lot of them don’t really kind of know how to play the game. And I remember that I awoke to this, let’s say it was probably like 29, or 30, when I was offered an opportunity, it was like, hey, I can pay you X amount a year. And it was higher six figures and almost no commission, or I can pay you 60k A year and bigger commission. And I was like, Well, my job is just to coach the hell out of athletes and get them results. And if I do that, like I’ve been doing, they’re gonna refer other friends. Like I had proof of concept I had helped to regrow. You know, like, when I was at a company, there was a depleted pro athlete program that I helped grow. So I knew I could do that. So I took a chance and did that. And I made more than I ever would have made takingthat other situation. 


And then I remember, I think it was Nicolas Nassim to lab, who had said, there’s three things that he was like, what was it? The three most addicting things in life are carbohydrates, heroin, and a salary. And that’s true. I mean, it’s true. I know that sounds extreme. And that might be off putting to some, but it’s true. And so even when you and I negotiated, you take in this role, right? I couldn’t compete with the University of Stanford, we’re a family owned business, you live in Palo Alto, there’s just not deep pockets, right. And I’m not the only person most entrepreneurial stories, and people know about that people leave high paying jobs, to come be a part of these things all the time. But what we could offer is very competitive commission structures, we could offer equity and things that you helped build, and you can get really creative. And that’s the fun of being an entrepreneur. If you come tomorrow, and you’re like, hey, I want to start a space shuttle program and AOC. Here’s proof of concept and you build it, why would I not pay you for that? Right? Why would we and this goes into game theory, this whole idea of the shrinking pie game, I had a friend one time he’s like, dude, I’d love to work for you. But I don’t want to take a piece of your pie. And I go, Hey, buddy, and I talked to him like locker room humor, so I go, Hey, idiot, and he was okay. In that context, I go, I’d rather have a smaller piece of a much bigger pie than a big piece of a smaller pie. I want you to make money, I want you to do that. And it’s that whole idea of, you know, faster, alone further together, we can all do really well for each other. And so I think when coaches reach out to us, and I’m sorry, I know this sounds cold hearted, and they’re in really tough financial situations, and they want some advice. I’m like, you know, listen, you need to find a way to get more savvy in business, find ways that you can make some money off of commission based opportunities, negotiate for equity. I think somebody in our channels group we had talked about that he wanted to ask for a raise, I go instead of just continually asking for raises, why don’t you find a way to put skin in the game. And win win, and we saw that Ali, I’ve been in positions where I’ve hired two groups of people, one that salary only, and another one that salary and commission, the salary and commission folks always work harder, because they bet on themselves. And they have skin in the game. 


And that’s nice. You wake up every day, think about how many people complain that like, it doesn’t matter how hard they work. And I know what this was like, I’ve worked in situations where like, I wrote, you know, very detailed programs, I coached my butt off. And there were other coaches that just did copy and paste, and we made the same amount of money. And you know, what, I only have myself to blame, because I wasn’t creative enough at the time to find other ways that I could do that. So without a doubt, yeah, salary and commission, and all those things are, huge. I would say another piece there, you know, of just thinking what goes into everything we’ve talked about when you consider what your personal net worth is, that’s total assets minus total debt. So your net worth is increased when you have more streams of income. And that could be real estate, like Do you own a home that could be other forms of income that could be like we have gig economy now. People have to understand their current financial position and what they need to work on it. And if they don’t, and they don’t get creative, they only have their self to blame. So I think that’s all I have to say on that.


Ali Kershner  1:04:59  

And I was Just going to clarify, I know that there are a lot of strength coaches listening to this that don’t have the option in there, you know, and they only are offered salary, right? Because they work for a university, they work for a school where that’s really the only option. I guess I would urge those coaches to rethink and question and explore other opportunities within that and just develop a mindset where you think about ways that you could diversify the way that you’re compensated, like, see if there’s a way to build in a bonus structure or see if there’s a way if you bring in, you know, you start a new program at your university, if you are an adjunct professor, like like, there’s, like, break out of the box of traditional thinking in terms of just salaries. The only way I can do this,


Brett Bartholomew  1:05:45  

yeah, cuz it’s not an excuse. I’ve been a part of an organization. And when I was very grateful with I know, there’s always people that think that I’m throwing heat at it when I say these things. But the rule at that time was that you couldn’t have your own brand. I couldn’t write a book there. I couldn’t. That was just the rules, right? And that’s no fault to them. That’s just what they believed in. So to your point, yes. If somebody’s the head strength coach at Winchester, tin field Ville University, and they can’t do social media or have a website. I’m sorry, you can go do what I just said. I did DoorDash you can do shipped. You can do. What’s the word? I’m looking for an Etsy thing in Korea. Like everybody’s got a side business. I remember my friend Brian, man, Brian, man, like for recreation. I think he either built or finished tables. Now. I don’t know if Brian sold them. But Brian could, I don’t care if somebody is at a place where they say I can’t build a brand. I can’t do this. There’s absolutely a way you can make money outside of even if you can’t do what like your job entails because you have and like you said, be more  disconcerting about contracts you sign with places that channel that right, because I get it like Ali, I wouldn’t want you just going off and doing a side gig when I’m paying you a salary and all that. But that’s why I give you permission, you don’t need to do a side gig because I want you to grow the ALI Kershner brand under the art of coaching umbrella. But even if somebody is in the most strict situation available, find something lateral that doesn’t have to do with your profession that can bring in 100 extra bucks a week. There’s really no excuse. Today, there’s a million ways that you can make money.


Ali Kershner  1:07:15  

Yep. All right, I think that’s you hit it.


Brett Bartholomew  1:07:17  

Let’s do a run through of three base. Three training based topics. We’ll wrap this in 10 minutes or less. And this is for all of you strength coaches that want to know the hot highly debated you know what, I’ll even repeat myself of something that I’ve you know, somebody’s drawn me into an argument in the past and Ali is extremely decorated in this field as well. And so the moment you guys have been waiting for if you’re the strength coach mafia ready to start drama on Twitter, he said she said is calm Ali, what do you want to start with?


Ali Kershner  1:07:46  

Oh, I would love to start with I think there is a purpose for an agility ladder.


Brett Bartholomew  1:07:55  

You want me to come on? Are you okay, go?


Ali Kershner  1:07:57  

No, I was gonna go I was just dramatic pregnant pause


Brett Bartholomew  1:07:59  

Dramatic pause


Ali Kershner  1:08:02  

You know, I used to be come at them with a pitchfork. They got the agility ladder out, what kind of fool is that who’s you know, got their agility ladder out on the field. But you know what he really think about it. It depends on what you’re using it for. If you’re using it for some low amplitude pliers to just stimulate the CNS warm up, you could even argue that there’s some coordination involved. It all depends on how you use the tool. And this is something that I like, truly, I don’t think there’s a bad tool. I mean, I there’s, like Cory from the Phoenix Suns, like he’ll, he’ll, he’ll talk to you about using machines. And the benefits of that. I mean, I nothing’s off limits, just depends on how you think about it.


Brett Bartholomew  1:08:46  

Yeah, I mean, and for those of you that don’t have context, because again, I want to be inclusive of anybody that’s not in the field. What we’re talking about with these quote, unquote, agility ladders is the ladders you see people throw out in the field, and they do kind of quote on, like, these Footwork Drills, right? They’re going through fast feet, right, this whole idea and, and there are certain things I’m like, Ali, there are certain things that if you’re saying that you’re doing it to improve agility, despite the name, or that it’s going to make you faster. No, it’s not, it’s not going to do those things. But if it is something to kind of start a part of a dynamic warmup, and just get people’s kind of nervous system revved up, or it’s a party kind of get increased core body temperature, it is stuff that athletes like and so it’s that old premise of give them 90% What they need 10% What they like if somebody does their deadlift and their squats, cool, go ahead and do your bicep curls. 


And so you have to figure out what aren’t like what is worth? Like? What is the battle worth to you, for coaches that are ardent? No, it has no place whatsoever. I would say that you’re a little self centric. There are athletes that find that stuff engaging, and you need engaged athletes, if you want athletes that are going to give you effort. It’s not going to hurt like have more confidence in yourself and your coaching than to think five to 10 minutes of doing some ladder drills is going to ruin the whole thing. So yeah, I just think that’s The super dumb argument that people get into and it just shows you is that the sword you want to fall on is that it’s the


Ali Kershner  1:10:07  

same as like doing some extra abs, right? Like, everybody likes to do the abs. And, you know, like, take that. And if a true, coach would figure out a way to make ABS still work, right? Like just make it a plank or make it a some sort of, you know, lateral stability thing with some functional like multiplanar movement that still involves the abs, right? And if you can explain that and make them buy into it, then that’s a true coach to me.


Brett Bartholomew  1:10:36  

Yep, I’m gonna put one out there. And this is more for my neighbor, because my neighbor comes over and he’s like, Hey, and he’s got like a stogie in his mouth. And he’s like, my kids doing squats at school. What do you think about squatting below parallel? And, you know, he’s like, then I heard this. And I heard that this one’s gonna be very quick. All right? Nobody is not everybody’s built the same way. I imagine that right? I’m five, eight, I’m 195 pounds. And actually, I’m not a natural squatter. I don’t have a lot of mobility in my ankles. And then there’s people that are like, Well, if you do soft tissue, and you mobilize and you do this, and you just walk around barefoot, now, right, some people anatomically don’t have the joint articulations. And like, you can mobilize and stretch and do all these things. And yes, those things are good. But that’s not all going to fix it right. Anatomically, we’re all different, I’m not going to squat the same as a six foot five person, and I’m not going to squat the same as another five foot eight person, our pelvis is going to be different, the head and neck of our femur are going to be different. Everybody’s body, the bony structures, the bony articulations are different. 


And so of course, like, right now I’m sitting in a chair and I’m parallel, right? If I stand up, technically, I have done a squat. So you would think that you could squat to parallel. But that’s not the same as having load on me. So I do believe that every most people, of course, if they’re healthy enough to do so, then all of these things that Ali and I are saying, come with a disclaimer of, if it’s approved by a physician, and your medical history and all that, of course, everybody should squat in some format. I do not think that it is necessary for everybody to squat Absolutely, to parallel where the crease of their hip right is to the, to where their knee is and 90 degrees. And then people say, Well, should you go ATG astagraf? No, not everybody should do any of this stuff. Right? You need to demonstrate good form under control. And people that say, Well, you’re not going to develop your quads, or your glutes or your hamstrings. If you don’t do this, Hey, idiots. That’s why you do other exercises in a program. So if I have an athlete that can’t squat to parallel, I am going to put him in a position where he can squat as well as he or she can. And then if there’s an issue, let’s say they they’re not able to get deep enough or the hamstrings are engaged. Well, great. We have glute hams, we have other forms of leg curls, Valve side leg or other things that we can do. That’s it’s almost like Ali, like saying everybody should cook one way. And there’s no way to deviate from a recipe. And heaven forbid you don’t have cumin, there’s no way you’re gonna get this flavor. There’s another flavor you can get. So never sacrifice form for depth. You know, some people are not meant to squat deep based on anatomy or previous injuries. And even if you look at like I dissected cadavers, right? Nobody all these bros that read blogs and all that, that swear and edit here to some dog, man, you know who it is. It’s usually people that have no trouble doing a certain thing that are the most ardent kind of I’m going to die hard on this supporters about that thing they haven’t. When somebody wanted to argue about this, it was really hard to win that argument with me when I’ve worked with military that had shrapnel embedded in their spine or their pelvis. Or I’ve worked with people that were post ACL and this or I had worked with somebody that was missing a part of their leg because of what happened overseas. And so I just I don’t I don’t know, I never got into these. When people are you about this, it’s evident that they either haven’t coached that many people, or they’ve only coached in one sport or one demographic, and they haven’t been in enough situations where they’ve had to modify. Is that complete? Did I miss something there?


Ali Kershner  1:14:18  

Yeah, I’m with you. I think you’re spot on there. I think it’s just a lazy answer. It’s just lazy to think that one thing would be right for everybody in every context. I mean, that is, I think that’s the one theme that’s central to all the things that we’re talking about today is the what makes these things bogus, is trying to apply them in every situation. And it’s lazy, to be honest with you. So if you want a good piece of advice, adapt everything you do, depending on the context and situation. I think you’ll find that we say that no matter what we’re talking


Brett Bartholomew  1:14:56  

about, and there’s a reason for it. Give me another training one


Ali Kershner  1:14:59  

I know that you had talked to me about your passion and fire around the full step.


Brett Bartholomew  1:15:06  

Oh, yeah, yeah. So and this is another one that I think sporting parents will appreciate as well as trained coaches. So, you know, there’s this idea. And this is always weird to like, discuss if people can’t see me, right, it’s easier to demonstrate. But imagine you guys are in like an athletic stance or a base stance. And if that terminology doesn’t make sense, imagine just kind of like a running back in the backfield Prior to the snap, right, or a shortstop right before the pitches thrown. Your feet are just, you know, they’re parallel to each other. And then imagine Ali or I blow a whistle or clap, and we tell you to sprint, you’re gonna see what some people used to term a false step, it looks like they’re stepping back, in order to take off, I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve had to argue with somebody who’s like, Well, you shouldn’t do that you’re stepping backwards, it slows you down. And I could get how to the lay person that looks that way, just like you and I, you know, I’m sure somebody in finance could say to the lay person, they would understand why some people think that debt is not good no matter what form it’s in. But what’s actually happening here, guys, it’s not a false step. You’re pre loading the tissue. It’s a stretch reflex. And your instinctive your body does this instinctively. I mean, if you’re standing up and you hear an explosion in the distance, you drop immediately, you kind of preload, it’s kind of like the same way of like, if I’m going to jump as high as I can, I have to load down, I’m loading that tissue, I’m loading the tendons, right all the complex musculature and of the body in order to do that. 


So I remember talking to this coach, and I said, you saying that a person doing like this step is making them slower is like saying somebody shouldn’t load downwards. Before they jump up, I go, That’s not what’s occurring. And I’d kind of explain it and they didn’t believe me. So then what I did is I lined 10 athletes up, and I had them get their feet feet parallel. And I said, Alright, guys, when I clap, I want you to sprint forward as fast as you can, and be conscious not to perform this false step, what is really a plyo step. And so I demonstrated it, I showed him what I meant, in various ways. So there’s no misinterpretation. And to make sure that they weren’t anticipating the clap, I went behind them. And I shouted out some false things. So I went like go, and I did this to kind of get them to jump. And then eventually, I clapped. And there was a massive latency phase a delay, right before they sprinted forward, because it’s not instinctive. So then I had them walked back, and I said, now do what you do naturally. Same thing, I threw some things in there. And then, you know, I didn’t even clap this time. I said, this time go on the go. So I clapped a couple of times tried to throw them off. And then when I said go, instinctively, they all perform the plyo step. 


So if you’re if you’re so confused, look it up. But the gist is, is what it looks like somebody stepping back a little Sally, Susie, Tommy, Jimmy or whatever, what they’re really using is applying a stretch reflex that is actually beneficial preloads, muscle tissue and the tendons, everything that allows us to be explosive, and allows you to release that kinetic energy more efficiently. So do not try to train that out of them. That is not what you want to do. There’s a reason our body does that. And yes, there are some things we have to train our body out of, because it’s not always the most effective or efficient. But that is not one of them. That is not one of them. Is there any thing that I explained there Ali that maybe the verbiage was confusing, or I could have been more clear on?


Ali Kershner  1:18:25  

No, I think it was, I mean, for people who have seen a false step we haven’t, like you said, go look it up. And I think it makes a ton of sense. It is something that you’ll hear both sides of this, debated back and forth, when there really there shouldn’t be a debate. It’s just like you see a pitcher with a funny delivery, is it worth taking that fine delivery out of his pitching motion and having him lose 10 degrees off or 10 mph off his pitch? Probably not. Right? Like this is helpful. And this is, you know, this is part of the why they’re so good, right. And so I think this is actually different than that. But I think it speaks to the same idea is like, making something look better, isn’t always making it more efficient or effective.


Brett Bartholomew  1:19:06  

Yeah, and the last one, I’m gonna say, and I’m gonna turn this to you, too. But I have to say this before we go, because a good friend of mine in the field has gotten a tad for criticizing this recently. And I think it’s silly, and I’m not going to use any names because again, I’m not going to promote anybody. That’s not the point of this. But you know, just to give you an idea, there’s so many other things that are contentious, like we could look at, like when people lunge should, where should your knees be? Where should this be? And and now there’s a lot of talk about exercise you should do to quote unquote, bulletproof your knees. And there’s somebody on Instagram that goes through all these exercises, all these things, and it claims to Get Rid of Knee pain, and I think it did for him. And then there’s another you know, we have a friend that says, hey, this actually isn’t a smart thing. You need to you need to discern context. Not everybody should do this. And then people attack both sides. They attack one guy that’s kind of popularizing it saying that he’s putting dangerous information out on the web, and there’s a lot of people that love him and support him up. He’s had to have made a million dollars this year. And then on the other end, people have attacked that criticizers saying, Well, you know, in real life, your knees are gonna go over your toes, and they’re gonna do this. And I just look at this debate. And it’s the same thing to me that we’ve been talking about. It’s, people, like there’s nothing, there’s nothing training wise, that is just universally good for everybody, no matter what, there just isn’t, you know, there’s so many N equals one cases. And so you know, it’s not neither side is right, neither side is wrong. It’s just like, but what they’re doing and what most of the audience doesn’t realize is they’re being played, right? The reason these debates happen, somebody’s always making money. Somebody’s always making money. So the more people that are ardent about one side, you’re helping that person make money. And then when somebody says, Oh, these people think you’re an idiot, and you’re doing this, this person is making money. And it’s like a puppet master. Right? And so when people are like, What are your thoughts on that I go, my thoughts are simple, I’m not really big on one size fits all methods, at all, you know, the only one size fits all thing, I am very much for you. I know what it is. Yeah. 


But the thing that I will stand by is, and this is going to be so predictable. I will stand by the only thing guaranteed to make any situation in life worse is being a poor communicator. Right? I will stand by that the quality of your life is by and large going to be influenced to some degree by the quality of your communication. And that’s why I choose to argue about or talk about this stuff. Now, how we handle the interpersonal how we handle the contextual because to argue about training stuff with people online, at 90 years old, I’m not going to sit there on my deathbed to be like, that was a damn good waste of my time. You’re not going to convince anybody and you but you and the nice thing is on the communication side, you don’t have to if you don’t believe Ali and I that communication is important, then go out and be an asset to everybody. be rude, be short, don’t be dependable, and watch what happens. But do you really want to argue about squatting depth and all this stuff in perpetuity? Like, do you want to argue about all like, think about what you spend the currency of your life on? What is so important you that you will spend the currency of your life debating about an exercise or a method. There are 8 billion people in the world. Focus your time on energy on the things that have the greatest benefit and utility to the people around you. And you’ll have a lot more satisfaction and you have a lot less drama. That’s all I have to say on that.


Ali Kershner  1:22:33  

I’m gonna let you finish on that Mic drop.


Brett Bartholomew  1:22:37  

All right. Well, I appreciate this hot take episode. You’re always awesome to do this with it’s a lot of fun. You bring educated topics, you’re quirky, you’re just a lot of fun to work with. And I hope people are liking these episodes. That’s the job. Good job. All right, guys. A if this helped you in any way, please send it to a friend or 20 Remember grassroots company I’m gonna hit you over the head with it because it’s true. And we’re just trying to make a change don’t let us get swallowed by the algorithm. We’re always competing with the NPRs and you know, all the other people that have these massive productions. It’s just me Ali, Lance, our team, my wife, we’re doing the best we can. So if it helped send it to somebody if you enjoyed this format, let us know That’s it. See you guys next time.

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