Success Podcast Post

How to Be Present with Bodhi Aldridge

George Grombacher September 7, 2023

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How to Be Present with Bodhi Aldridge

LifeBlood: We talked about how to be present, the value in getting back to who you truly are, why so many of us feel like there’s more for us, and how to start tapping into it and living on your terms, with Bodhi Aldridge, transformational coach, facilitator, and speaker.      

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Our Guests

George Grombacher

Nick Aldridge

Bodhi Aldridge

Episode Transcript

george grombacher 0:02
Buddy Aldrich is a transformational coach facilitator speaker. He is working to support men in their experience to find true freedom and ignite their inherent magnificence. He is the co author of visionary male leaders. Welcome Bodie.

Bodhi Aldridge 0:18
Thanks. Thank you so much, George. Thank you for having me.

george grombacher 0:21
Yeah. So excited to have you on, tell us a little bit your personal lives more about your work and why you do what you do?

Bodhi Aldridge 0:29
Yeah, well, I mean, as you mentioned, I work with male leaders, I work with men, you know, really around presence, purpose and passion. And that’s been my journey. My journey, you know, when I, when I finished school, I went to went to law school, and became an attorney. And, you know, that was really because my parents suggested it, my mom said, you know, that’d be a good thing to do. And, you know, in my 20s, found myself, you know, working as an attorney, married children, mortgage. And it was, it was a time of my life where, you know, you can kind of lose yourself. And I kind of had lost touch with my true self. And the big shift for me was, I actually went on a nature retreat, I just took myself away for a couple of weeks. And you know, the stillness allowed me to reconnect with myself, I then found a mentor, who was amazing. And what happened was, I was able to embrace and bring more passion into my life into my marriage, into my parenting. And then 20 years after being an attorney, I’ve got the opportunity to transition into being a coach and a facilitator. And I’ve been doing that for the last 20 years around the globe, working with lots and lots of organizations and leaders on this topic,

george grombacher 1:55
I appreciate that. And I think I have a sneaky suspicion that there’s a lot of folks out there who are following a similar path of what the school saw attorney or accountant or whatever, this is a prestigious career, you can make money, it’s a great, you know, you got kids, then you got a mortgage, it’s just we’re kind of getting pulled along by the stream.

Bodhi Aldridge 2:24
Yeah, that’s it. And it’s not necessarily about leaving that Korea, it can be for some of us. Yeah, it’s also, you know, I talk a lot about the Inside Out experience of leadership. And often what happens is, again, we just get lost in, you know, we lose touch with their inner self. And that’s a big part of the work because once you reconnect with your inner self, then that starts to become your navigating tool around what is what is purpose, what is important to you. And the fundamental tool that are used for that is teaching men how to get present. You know, presence is the key, the ability to get present with yourself.

george grombacher 3:07
What, what does one stand to gain by reconnecting to our authentic actual self.

Bodhi Aldridge 3:16
At a top level, that journey for a lot of us is from distraction to presence. So if we look at what we lose, and then look at what we gain, a lot of a sudden losing so much mental energy, so much emotional energy in this world of distraction, you know, the emails, the phone, the, you know, around trawling through things and etc. And so, what happens is a lot of people are exhausted. A lot of people are depleting their energy all day long, because of this distraction, you know, the studies in neuroscience incredible around, you know, one text message, storage in the middle of, you know, working on a document can take up to 23 minutes for the brain to refocus. And so, you know, we know what we’re losing, we’re losing energy, you know, we’re losing peace. And we’re losing a lot of the ability to really be effective as leaders. And so if you flip that, you know, the benefits of being present not just at work, but across your family. You know, I ran up a leadership program for men and a lot of the men said, one of the biggest outcomes was being more present with my children. Just the ability to be present with them to notice them to connect with them. And in the context of gain, we know that in relationship whether you’re a leader whether you’re a husband, whether you’re a father, you know, connection and curiosity. Yeah, such a valuable experiences to have.

george grombacher 4:57
Is it A, is it a function of Do I need to know what’s important to me? Therefore, that allows me to be able to prioritize and to say no to things?

Bodhi Aldridge 5:10
Yeah, great question. Yeah. Again, if you think about the decision making process, when we’re busy in our heads, our thinking mind. So 80,000 thoughts a day, most of them are negative. And so to your point, if we’re really looking at what’s important to me, what are my values, and ultimately, the conversation around purpose, we’ve got to find that stillness, we’ve got to find that presence, we’ve got to get in touch with the deeper part of ourselves, that quiet part of ourselves, I have a lot of mentors who say, there’s this whisper inside of me, that there’s something more, that there’s something else that I fully want to fully express myself. And so absolutely, you know, when we get to purpose, if we’re not present, if we haven’t quiet and that busy mind quiet, and all of those distractions and disturbances, it’s very hard to find our true values, our true purpose and things that as you say, what’s important to me?

george grombacher 6:12
Do you get from guys because you’re working with with, with, with with a lot of men, it’s that that feel like a big part of their existence, and their worth is granting and bearing it. And Bert and being a beast of burden for lack of a better term and that this sounds nice, but you know, I’m just making a living and I’m supporting my family.

Bodhi Aldridge 6:39
Yeah, yeah, exactly. You know, you mentioned in the introduction. So, you know, one of the fundamental outcomes of the work I do is for men to experience true freedom. Yeah, and that’s freedom from the inside out. So if you think about the hero’s journey, which we are all on as men and the heroines journey is slightly different. The trajectory for most of us is that we’re looking for this sense of freedom outside of ourselves, in our 20s, you know, we go and travel and sit on a mountain and go surfing, and we’re looking for it there. And then, you know, life takes over, and suddenly, you know, married mortgage, Korea, children. And because of the distortion of that men can feel this incredible pressure responsibility. You know, I talk a lot about what true commitment is they can, they can feel that weight, because they’re looking for freedom in the wrong place. Yeah, freedom comes from within freedom is our innate nature. And so once men start to realize that there is a different way to experience, their relationships, their career, then that pressure, as you say, that the storage starts to ease. And it’s a great observation, George, because it’s such a common challenge for Western men.

george grombacher 8:07
So true commitment. Tell me more about that.

Bodhi Aldridge 8:10
Yeah. Yeah, there’s a there’s a thing called the commitment paradox. And so commitment, the definition of commitment is I choose to have no more choice. In anything, whether I decide to run a marathon, whether I commit to my marriage, whether I commit to my health, the paradox, George’s we always have choice. That’s just the nature of life, particularly in the Western world. So what happens is that when you fully commit to something, it’s very different than sitting on the fence. Do you know the difference? George, do you know when you kind of that’d be a good idea. I’d like to get fit. I’d like to go to the gym. Yeah. Yeah. And then at some point in your life, you go, I’m committed. I’m absolutely committed to that I choose to have no more choice. That’s when you actually start to create freedom of choice. Because you’re absolutely committed. And so what happens the classic example on the hero’s journey is for a lot of men make commit to their relationships. Yep. And when I work with men, usually most men George, even though they’re married, yet, a part of them has their bags packed, and they’re at the back door. And if it gets too, too pressured, then here, I’m out. Because they haven’t fully committed. And so what happens is that when you fully commit to your relationship, what you’re actually saying is, I’m 100% committed. I’m 100% here, and I choose to be here. In this moment I choose to be in this moment I choose to be and all of your energy shifts. Again, think about sitting on the fence. Think about commitment you know yourself when you commit You’re fully present. And all of your energy, energy changes. And the experience for the feminine because the feminine, is looking for presence is looking for that connection. And so it’s a very different experience in our primary relationships as an example, when we fully commit, and experience the freedom of that.

george grombacher 10:23
And an essential part of that to sort of circle back to so if I’m understanding correctly, in order to do that, I need to examine myself, I need to understand myself, I need to eliminate distraction and be present so that I am showing up as fully me as I can be for everything in my life, my family, my loved ones, my work everything.

Bodhi Aldridge 10:51
Yeah, yeah. And the distinction is really, really huge, true self. So so many of us are caught up in this limited identity of who we are. You know, in a lot of spiritual traditions, one of the fundamental questions you can sit with a lot is Who Am I. Because, again, so much of our identity, so much of our worth in the world, and our conditioning is based on I’m a father, I’m a lawyer, I’m fun. So this identity can trap us into thinking that who we are. And so the power of presence, the power of nature, the power of getting still allows us to connect with that deeper part of ourselves. We know inherently there’s something more than just my egoic thinking mind. And when we start to connect with that, then absolutely, we start to realize that I can be more present in this moment. Because our egoic mind, our limited mind, our limited D comes from deficiency that comes from there’s not enough. I’m not enough, there’s not enough. We’re constantly seeking something outside of ourselves to fulfill ourselves. You know, and that’s the trap. That’s a trap of consumerism, that’s the trap of the Western world, something out there will make me happy, peaceful, free, whatever it might be. And when you get still, when you get present, when you can make with the essence of yourself, you realize I am whole and complete. And now how do I want to express myself? How do I want to express my purpose? Yeah, how do I want to express my passion? So it’s a different experience from the inside out?

george grombacher 12:34
So what does this work actually look like? Is it it’s I assume it’s it’s it’s a life’s work? But and?

Bodhi Aldridge 12:44
Yeah, that’s right, exactly. Well, one of the interesting things, George, when you say that, as far as for clients working with me, what’s it look like? Yeah, one of the things in all traditional cultures, you know, having studied, you know, I’ve studied contemporary leadership with some of the best leaders, systemic leadership, vertical development, leadership. And I’ve also studied a lot of traditional wisdom. And what I know is that in traditional wisdom, traditional cultures, and the hero’s journey is that men inherently learned by being with other men. And traditionally, men would sit by the campfire. And we’d have a mentor would have a guide that would hear from the elders would support each other. And so what I’ve done the last couple of years is men usually start working with me one on one. And I start to give them the practices about how to get present, and how to start to align with your purpose. And then what I do is, I run nine month on virtual programs, on Zoom for groups of my leaders around the world where we meet twice a month, for an hour and a half on Zoom, and we go deeper with the teachings. And we go deeper together as men on our hero’s journey. And, again, whilst sometimes there’s some resistance from men about being in the group, the groups that I’ve been running, most of the men sign up against the next year, because that being witnessed and being held by other men are such an important part of this journey.

george grombacher 14:23
Why did that stop? Why did that mentor ship dynamics? Or maybe I’m wrong? I sort of feel like it’s staffed.

Bodhi Aldridge 14:32
Yeah, yeah, exactly. Well, it’s interesting. If you think about, again, you know, in Australia, similar to the US, you know, when when, if you think of the 50s and the way that urban development occurred, and the way the nuclear family evolved, and, you know, suburbs, you know, we’ve got the sprawl here, the famers in the US. So what happened is, through I think a commercial lens, we certainly do disconnected communities and villages. Yeah, so you had your beautiful block of land in your house, but it was, you know, a two hour commute to work. And so again, if you go back traditional cultures, even some of the European clubs is still, you know, the grandparents still live with the children. You know, granddad was still there as a mentor for the grandson. And so I think, you know, there are many layers to it. But I think one of the layers was just the way we evolved in the Western world, into this very nuclear isolated, you know, people travel across the country for work, and they disconnect from their community. And I think, you know, post COVID joins that such a craving that I see working globally, you know, I’ve been able to Europe recently is there’s a real craving for connection. There’s a real craving for community. And I think it was highlighted through COVID is that we’re really yearning, what is in our DNA. Again, it’s such a part of the hero’s journey.

george grombacher 15:59
That makes a ton of sense. Modern Living, once again, is literally killing us. Bodie.

Bodhi Aldridge 16:09
And then, of course, you know, and I know, in the US, there’s a lot of conversation around men. Yep. And how do we support young boys? And, you know, again, if you look at the messages, the distortion of the messages that have filtered through our college system, our school system, our work environment, you know, a lot of that then created this isolation, you know, be a man, you know, all the all the things we know, little boys don’t cry, do it yourself. It’s fascinating with problem solving. I’ll come back to that yet. One of the recent studies, George is that the most lonely people on the planet are middle aged white men. They’ve lost connection, the trajectory, as a generalization is they finish college, I’m talking that demographic. They lean into their career, their marriage, their children may lose their college friends. Work is taking a lot of their time. They may have their golf buddies and things like that. But suddenly, they look around and go, I’ve just lost that connection and intimacy with with my male friends. And it’s the sort of thing you you don’t see from the outside that in turn or desire for connection, deep loneliness that so many people are feeling.

george grombacher 17:30
It’s listening to that whisper.

Bodhi Aldridge 17:33
It is it is. And it’s there. Have you have you heard it yourself? At times? There was no sir, sir. You bet. Yeah. And again, it’s getting present with that. Listening to that. Yeah, honoring that. And then what is that telling me? Yeah, and one of the interesting things is when we really start to dismantle our limited ego, we sort of start to realize that we can create the life that we’re looking for, you know, we really can, you know, we don’t have to be out of fact, we don’t have to be the victim of the external circumstances that we get, we get to create what we’re looking for as men as husbands as fathers. And it’s exciting. You know, the thing about passion is, if think about a life force, that energy in us and you were mentioning, you’ve been exploring itself, in my experience, personally, and also working with so many men is we spent so much time repressing our lifeforce, repressing our emotions, you have distracting ourselves. And when you start to settle and get more present, you have more energy. You have more of this lifeforce, this energy that’s in us. And I often say you know, people say do what brings you passion. What I say is bring passion to what you do. Do what brings you joy. It’s like bring joy to what you do. When you tap into that lifeforce, because you’re not repressing and suppressing every day, you suddenly realize, wow, I’ve got all this joy and passion for my for my love that for my children, yeah.

george grombacher 19:12
It’s another one of those paradoxes. Feel like you don’t have any time and no energy, no bandwidth to be doing this kind of thing. When in fact, once you do this kind of thing, you get more time and energy and bandwidth.

Bodhi Aldridge 19:29
And see, exactly and your relationship with time changes. Again, when you present your relationship with time changes, so absolutely, absolutely.

george grombacher 19:36
Love it. Well, Bonnie, thank you so much for coming on. Where can people learn more about you and how can people get involved and engage with you?

Bodhi Aldridge 19:48
Yeah, so my website is simply www. Dot vody pod Hai, ALD rip GE and as part of coming on your Show. We’re offering a free giveaway for any of your listeners. It’s one of my fundamental meditations around presence. So people go to the website, and you can you can click on that. And yeah, there’s lots of lots of blogs, lots of newsletters, and it’s really that. As you mentioned, George, I think so many men. They hear that whisper. Yeah, they just don’t listen to him. And so if you got that whisper, yeah, that’s getting louder, then yeah, reach out, reach out, we can see if we can support you.

george grombacher 20:41
If you enjoyed this as much as I did, showboater, your appreciation and share today’s show with a friend who also appreciates good ideas. I know, the value of even if you feel like, you don’t need to feel like you are drowning in it. Just if you’re curious about it, if you think that there could be a little bit more just get started with the work. Go check out. Bodie, read the blogs, check out that meditation that Bodhi is giving away and just kind of get started scratch it a little bit scratched the surface. And, you know, I just can’t speak enough to the value of the work that Bodie is doing and to the impact that it can have on your life because to his point, there is so much more that is available to you. So thanks, everybody.

Bodhi Aldridge 21:31
Thank you so much shorts, it’s been a delight. And until next

george grombacher 21:33
time, remember, do your part by doing your best

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