Becoming a MasterMind: Chris Laping | OYNB 098

One Year No Beer Podcast Episode 098 – Becoming a MasterMind with Chris Laping

One Year No Beer can change your relationship with alcohol. But it can also open the door for you to change your life on even more fundamental levels, and that’s what you’ll hear discussed in today’s episode. 

In today’s show, Ruari speaks with Chris Laping, Jen, and Damien about the MasterMind program. Chris begins by sharing his One Year No Beer journey and how he got involved in the leadership of the MasterMind program. He explains how he was drawn to the MasterMind program in the first place and what it was like to jump into it. He describes what happens during the MasterMind program and what parts of the program he was most affected by. He also talks about the changes and reactions that he sees from others who are going through the MasterMind program. 

“Sometimes, the smallest tweaks in our life create a breakthrough.”

Jen joins the group to talk about her own experiences with OYNB and joining the MasterMind program. Jen is a 365, One Year No Beer Legend and she also participated during every single day of her time in the MasterMind program. She explains that she almost decided not to sign up for the program, but that doing so was the right decision because it helped her get past the hump in her alcohol-free journey. She explains what changed for her and what surprised her about her experience in the MasterMind program. 

Damien was part of the April MasterMind program. He explains where he was in his life when he found the One Year No Beer program – a driven corporate man, focused on success, who was looking for ways to improve himself, and specifically to get more time. Eventually, he came to the realization that what he needed to do was to stop drinking. He found the 28 Day Challenge on Amazon and later joined the online group. In March, he was still part of the group and working on staying alcohol-free, but he was at a low point in many ways. Around that time, he saw the ad for the MasterMind group and decided to go for it. 

During today’s conversation, Ruari and the others also read and respond to comments from group members. Listen in to today’s episode for insights about how OYNB and MasterMind can help you change your life and make it into the life that you’ve always wanted. 

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Episode Transcript

Ruari: We are live. Good afternoon, good evening, good morning. Is it still morning? Yeah, it is. Morning on the West Coast.

Chris: Yeah, it is morning here in Denver, Colorado.

Ruari: There you go, perfect. Here we are live streaming to you. I'm just going to bring this up now. I’m going to turn this down and see what’s coming on and I can make sure I can see all comments as they come on. Great. Roniece is here, Bonjour!

Just to let you all know, we're going to be here for a bit of time. Me and Chris, we're going to talk about Chris' absolutely fantastic, amazing—however you want to describe it—journey of joining One Year No Beer and all the life changes, and then just how integrated you've become. Assimilated Chris, like the Borg.

Chris: By the way, I cannot believe you're actually going to sit in one place at one time for one hour.

Ruari: I will get up. I'll get up. What I'll do is I will just do […] and then I'll come back like this. 

Chris: Literally, my heart stopped. Oh, no. Technical issues.

Ruari: No, no. I was just getting off my seat and hiding for a moment. 

I don't need to introduce myself. Everybody knows who I am. Chris, lots of people see you. Lots of people know who you are. For all those who don't, give us a bit of the story, background of Chris, how you came about One Year No Beer, and what changed for you.

Chris: First all of, hello to everybody. I know that most of you actually don't know who I am. I feel like I know most of you because I've been supporting the One Year No Beer team behind the scenes for the last couple of years. 

I think to tell the story right, I should just start with, first and foremost, I'm a One Year No Beer member and had a lot of success in the program. A few years ago, I wrote a book. I was hosted on this podcast. It was a leadership podcast. I was just talking about the book. When I got done with it, the host of that show connected to me on LinkedIn. Probably within a week or two of that connection, I got this little note that basically said that he liked this blog that was on LinkedIn. It was a blog posted by Ian.

The premise of the blog was that a lead athlete doesn't drink. If you wanted to be a lead in your professional career, why would you drink? That was how it all started. I read that blog. I think I was one of those people that believed I worked really hard so I should play really hard. I actually had no idea how much that playing hard was affecting my personal and professional life because I was holding on to a successful career as my comfort blanket that no matter what anybody said, I was doing it right. That my life was fine.

I got really curious based on that blog and ended up joining and doing the 28 Day Challenge. I started as a member and then the 28 Day Challenge came and went. I decided I was going to go back to my life of moderating. That didn't work. A few months after that, Kristine, my lovely wife, and I were having a conversation. She said when we did that 28 Day Challenge, it changed everything for us. Why would we live a life where we're trying to moderate alcohol when we had such a great run for just those 28 days? She took the lead and said I'm doing this for a year. She even promised that if she did it for a year, she was going to get a tattoo.

I was excited about that. That caused me to jump in. That was already a longer story than it needed to be but we started as members. We had a successful journey. Coincidentally, Ruari, I got a message from you when I was on that journey talking about looking for investors, growing this mission, and helping as many people as we could. Literally, sitting in the back on an Uber car in San Francisco I saw your message and I was like, I have got to meet this guy and I got to be involved.

Kristine and I ended up becoming investors. Soon, investors became not involved enough. Let's get involved in the board and let's help do everything we can to make sure this is successful. I just felt like that wasn't enough. Thanks to you, Ruari, I've been able to connect with and start to provide leadership around this MasterMind program which has been really awesome.

Ruari: Yeah. What an amazing journey. I remember, we did a trip. We invited people out to come and join us when we went to go to Iceland. That was the first time we've got the chance to meet. We went out to Spartan Iceland and we all just connected.

First of all, getting people together was really impactful. Getting One Year No Beer around a table together certainly ran some adventure. That was the beginning of things. You've been incredibly helpful on the board supporting us. Really, One Year No Beer's growth and success. We've got a great team, Chris as a partner. Then, as you said, you were like, I really think that I could help with this MasterMind thing. In a way, it was a really big mantle to hold because Andy kicked off this MasterMind. He's been really successful. Lots of people were raving about it. As in, he is the product. It was like Chris is going to come and take this on. It's grown wings.

Chris, you're going to be much modest about it than I am. It's seeing phenomenal success. The transformations that people get from MasterMind are just amazing. What you've done with it is just amazing. Let's talk about that a bit. What drew you into MasterMind? How was it in those first sessions? What is it?

Chris: First of all, Ruari, you are being modest. What I was really concerned about jumping into MasterMind is that both you and Andy have very big shoes. The reality of it is in the community, we all have our lives transform because of the two of you. My concern was, am I going to be as helpful? Will people jump into the MasterMind and be disappointed because it's really just me hosting this thing or will they accept me? 

If I take a step back, MasterMind was something that I had the opportunity to go through. Again, as a member, I was doing what I think many people in the challenger group do. I was having success with not drinking. I actually had no idea how much drinking consumed my life. As silly as that sounds, that hour or hour-and-a-half a day could really change everything for me depending on how I use it. That my friends may look at me differently, may treat me differently. That was going to change things for me. That my career might be affected.

I was asking, now what? I'm doing well on this. I think I'm going to continue being alcohol-free. What do I do next? How do I reframe what's possible and open that next chapter up in my life? How do I turn the page?

I took the MasterMind with Andy. I have to say that initially, I think a lot of people that have met Andy or met you in person, Ruari, went through this starstruck moment. Then, I was like, no. This guy is actually here to help. That's what he's focused on. He's not focused on being a star. Which was my experience with you, Ruari. 

I jumped in, really, not fully knowing how it was going to help shape my goal forward strategy. I was willing to try. Again, I was wanting to reset my compass and I was asking this question, now what? I knew there's more work to do.

I jumped in. There were habits and routines that we worked on in that group that I was already naturally doing well but there were some real gaps that I didn't know; some blindspots for me. I will tell you from that very first MasterMind all the way now to launching this new MasterMind at the end of the month, that is the big storyline here. 

The big storyline was, it's not that the clouds part, the angels sing, and you have this big breakthrough moment in your life. It's that sometimes, the smallest tweaks in our life creates a breakthrough. Andy's program, when I went through it, helped me frame that and see that. Having experienced it and being transformed by it, again, I just knew that I needed to get involved. 

Initially, the way you guys involved me was that we just had a lot of different time zones we're trying to take care of. I just went and shadowed Andy on a MasterMind and helped take care of people in this specific timezone of North America. Really, then starting to grow my understanding of this stuff. 

What I will tell you is beyond all of the work that we do behind the scenes at One Year No Beer to get this thing going. The real focus for me, especially the natural, I'm just curious, I had a curiosity for learning, and I'm naturally a storyteller which really happened the more I got involved in this MasterMind, I've seen people's personal journeys and stories. By the way, I found my own self. I can find my own story in their story. That has really changed my understanding of what is possible here and what it is that we're doing.

For people who don't know what MasterMind is, it's a six-week course. It's from a time investment perspective. If you get a five-minute daily challenge video from me and there's about a 10- or 15-minute exercise that you work on, it's about a 20 minutes a day commitment. We do that six days a week. We give everybody a rest or a catchup day. We do specific work over a six week period. It's all about resetting your compass and trying to find those small things, the small tweaks, that when they're made, could create personal and professional breakthroughs.

That's it in a nutshell. I feel like I'm just rambling on.

Ruari: No, no. That was all amazing. I'm going to pick that through some of the stuff. I think you linked it perfectly. It was your own discovery. It's the simplicity of these techniques and these things. I kind of do that but kind of doing it and putting it into the structure. It's a bit like saying I've got sand but I haven't actually put the ingredients in to make cement yet and build a house. That's totally different. One's a house, the other one's a pile of cement, and actually putting those ingredients together. 

I think what we knew, we knew that what we were building with One Year No Beer was unique. We knew that Andy's understanding of positive psychology, that both of us being absolute avid leaders of behavior change, positive psychology, and all that good stuff, brought that to the table to apply it to alcohol behavior change, meant that this was going to be something unique. Those exact same things were applied because we saw thousands of people. 

Over the last five years, you barely go past a day where you don't see a post about somebody saying I've gone through this alcohol piece, but now, I'm feeling a bit unsure. I don't know where I am. I'm not sure about my relationship. I'm not sure about my job. I'm not sure about what I'm doing. I'm not sure I got this right. Why am I feeling a bit more depressed? All of these things. 

We were like, this is really interesting. This is coming out from most people. What is this about? It turns out, of course, we now know and we talked about this so many times, of course, there's a reason why people are drinking. The reasons are complicated. BJ Fogg’s recent podcast, he was talking about how new habits are easy to cultivate whereas bad negative habits are more like weeds. The whole process of actually taking that weed out leaves the areas that it was touching into your life. We go to this period of thinking, hold on a minute, which way is up? What would I want to achieve with my life? What do I really want to do? What are the things that make me happy? What are my strengths? What are my values? What is the impact I want to give?

We saw these. That's where really the early stages of MasterMind came together and you put it perfectly, reset my compass. I talked about that. I mentioned that so many times. A boat without actual direction, it's just going to spin. You never really know whether to reassess or what to do. It's the action-taking that starts you in the direction of understanding you’re pointing in the wrong direction so you can go through the process of resetting your compass.

The big bit with the MasterMind was allowing people that space and that time, working together in that group of people who are going through the exact same thing that you are which is I've nailed the alcohol piece. Now, I'm thinking about what's next. What areas of my life do I want to focus on? What do I improve?

I don't know how many people we've had to go through the MasterMind. It is hundreds that go through our MasterMind. I think most people, if not everybody, raves about it. I think in the lifetime of MasterMind we've given one refund because of the timing. Generally, it's a very impactful program.

Chris: Yeah. One thing I love about the MasterMind, too, is it tackles a really interesting thing that we do as humans. As humans, when we want something big to happen in our lives, we set a big goal. We work toward that goal. As an example, running a marathon. We say I've never run a marathon before and six months from now I'm going to run in one.

Then, we go out and we start to build habits and routines that support us achieving that goal. What happens is you get to that goal achievement. You run the marathon six months from now. Literally, the day after the marathon is over, you just return back to the way it was before. You're not running every day. You're not training for a big race. 

This MasterMind explores that. What has to happen is you have to transform your identity first as I'm a runner. What do runners do? Runners run. When runners run, then the marathon is just an outcome of that. It's not like some special event. It communicates who you are outwardly. It doesn't happen the other way around. 

This thing around identity transformation is what really changes us. If I think about even the alcohol-free journey that we're all on, at the beginning of it, we say to people I'm trying to quit alcohol. If someone says you want to drink? You're like, no, I'm trying to quit drinking. That's different than saying I don't drink. I don't drink is your identity. It's who you are. I'm trying to quit drinking is just like an outcome or goal.

In terms of resetting this compass, it is amazing that we just have to have some time back to ourselves to focus on what am I about? What do I believe in? Who do I want to become? We're not human doings. We're human beings. In our best days, we are human becomings. Instead of just doing stuff every day, instead of just setting a goal, who are we? Who do we want to become? Becomes the focus. 

At MasterMind, we're really digging into that. I'm not going to give away any trade secrets during this call but I will tell you, day three in the MasterMind, consistently, that is when everyone for the first time gets this dramatic wake-up call. It was dramatic for me as someone who went through it. I'm telling you as someone who coaches it now, it is this eye-opening moment that tells you everything you need to know about your identity. Then, all of a sudden, the docks start going off. Your lightbulb starts going off. You start connecting the dots.

As you said, Ruari, when we're resetting our compass, this is where we wake up and we start asking really big questions. What am I doing? Why am I here? Is this job the right job? What can I do to be better in my relationship with my significant other? Am I a good parent? Do I want to be a parent? Watching people work through that, it's amazing. Really amazing.

We have two people that'll be joining today who have amazing stories that they could both easily be coaches in MasterMind because they're so strong and their stories, we can find all our stories in where they had these moments. Again, the clouds didn't part and the angels didn't sing. They had these real moments, like what do I do every day? What are my habits? How are they an extension of who I am? Are they getting me where I want to be? 

Here's the real crux of it all. The real crux of it all is when we don't have a plan for ourselves. Somebody else or our biology has a plan for us.

Ruari: Yeah. It's fate.

Chris: And that is no way to live where you feel like this small boat out of the ocean being knocked around. I get excited about this. I totally get excited about this stuff. You can tell. I'm sorry for rambling.

Ruari: The hardest thing is when you know that these things—not the hardest thing—but it's hard not to be so enthusiastic about these things when you see what the outcome is for people. They have no idea going into it. They're feeling this of not being quite there or whatever. It could be negative stuff but basically I'm not feeling comfortable with my life or whatever that is. Then, they go through this process and they come out supercharged. 

People are starting businesses, starting a podcast, whatever they're going off to do. They're coming out of this process supercharged with clarity, with a vision. Many with a renewed sense of purpose and meaning which is so critical. People are making inroads and decisions into their life which is helping in thinking about their next trajectory.

Chris: By the way, Ruari, that comes from the tribe, too. They jump into this MasterMind as a close-knit group of people, this small tribe. They don't know anything about each other when it starts. By the time it's over because they've gone through this with someone else, they become close for life. 

It reminds me of when I was a kid, I was in high school. I went to this summer camp. It was only for one week. Routinely, even at this age, even with all these gray hairs in my beard, I think back on that camp because there was something transformative that happened to me that week. It happened with this small close-knit group of people who are still, honestly, in my life today. They're still connected to me on Facebook. Yet, it was just one week. You can only imagine what happens in six weeks.

Ruari: Absolutely, absolutely. We're going to have a quick look at a couple of the comments here and then we've got Jen who we want to bring on and hear a bit of her story. 

Jose, thank you for your positive comments. “OYNB has changed my life. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.”

Chris: Look at how handsome and strong he is. 

Ruari: He is. Come and check out MasterMind, Jose, if you think that OYNB is life-changing. This is the thing with this. If I know that most of you, almost everybody came here just to change their relationship with alcohol. But if you only come here and change your relationship with alcohol, then we failed you. We opened the doors for you to completely change your life, that's the reality. MasterMind is completely integral to that.

I just wanted to add in here. Teri, “I'm 230 days and only want to drink when I go out which isn't often anymore as we do other leisurely things that don't involve alcohol. The most it could be around 6 times a year at most, which is how I used to be, 30 years ago. Would MasterMind still be applicable for me?” 100%. The thing here… unless you want to answer that, Chris?

Chris: Well, I'm processing it. It totally is for Teri but I wanted to just make sure that I said something that was relevant here. One thing that we talked about and worked on in MasterMind is just the Power Hour. When do the most important things in our lives get done? Oftentimes when we have our life framed around drinking, as an example, Power Hour is at night. We go to dinner with people or we meet out with them for happy hour. The reality of it is we can actually really connect with people during breakfast or during a coffee. Then, there's no weird explanation why we don't drink.

The reason why I think MasterMind is applicable here in Teri's storytelling beyond the Power Hour—this is something we work on a lot—is that for us to have really close connections in our lives, connections that really matter, we have to be able to look at ourselves in the mirror. We have to be able to love and accept ourselves. And we have to prioritize ourselves. When we become stronger in our constitution about who we are, what we believe, we become so much better to other people. Again, this is beyond alcohol. 

What I now know but I didn't know at the beginning of my journey is that the unlock was putting alcohol to the sidelines of my life, not ever thinking about it. Not even thinking about trying to get to the point. It took me a while to get to the point of not even thinking about moderation. Moderation Is a lot of work. Your brain's constantly trying to justify whether it's good or not.

Anyway, going back to Teri's question, I think being able to really love ourselves, accept ourselves, invest in ourselves, and then to be able to go and share that with people over breakfast, coffee, lunch, changes a lot about those relationships.

Ruari: Yeah. I would also just add from a very functional perspective, Teri, here, 230 days, tech in reality. We want to be seeing people who are 90 days or beyond. We've had people join MasterMind for less than 90 days. The question is, do you feel like you've got the alcohol-free bit in the bag so this is not going to be flaring up during MasterMind? If you do feel like you've got the alcohol-free bit in the bag, that challenge bit, MasterMind is absolutely for you. 

It doesn't matter whether you're choosing to moderate a little bit, which is how I will choose. Just so you know, I don't have that constant question in my mind. I have it in a special place. If you are choosing to go that way, that is not relevant to MasterMind. MasterMind is a reassessment of your life program. The key thing is you have the alcohol thing nailed in the bag. I think that was one thing to add in there.

Chris: Yeah. By the way, 230 days is awesome, Teri. I don't have any maracas with me, but I'd be shaking them because getting the north of 200 days is a big commitment you made.

Ruari: Let's hear from Jen. Jen, where are you? Let me just add. Let's try this here and then do this here.

Chris: There she is.

Ruari: I don't want to be the biggest. How do I rotate? 

Jen: Put me on speaker view? I don't know.

Ruari: How are you?

Jen: Good. Can you hear me?

Chris: Yes, we can.

Jen: Okay. I do that for work all the time just making sure. Hi, so happy to be here.

Ruari: Good to have you here. So, Jen, do you want to give us a bit of background into your OYNB experience and MasterMind?

Jen: Sure. I guess I'll start from the most recent to backing up. As of May 11, I believed, I am a 365, One Year No Beer Legend. Now, it’s rewind and go to that whole year prior. I was reflecting on this when I was thinking about coming on here. Really, I didn't have a rock-bottom moment of like, oh, man. I've got to change. It was getting tiring and exhausting waking up 3–4 times out of the workweek a little bit slow or hungover. It's just the culture of working happy hours, social events. It just really caught up to me. I remember specifically sitting at the dinner table talking with my husband, seeing the ads pop up. I was like, you know? I might just sign up for these 28 days because I had so many best intentions. I'm going to moderate my drinking. I get through the workweek and I'd be like, I deserve this wine. The cycle would continue.

I followed the ads pop-up and I thought why not? What if you signed up? What if you just made this one decision? I will say the first seven days were hard, for sure. Then, I just kept getting a little bit easier and a whole lot brighter. My life is just so much better for making that one decision. I'm also a rambler like Chris. I'll stop.

Chris: I want to add a point though here, Ruari, because this is such an important part of Jen's story. I don't think she'd ever say this but I'm going to say it for her. I haven't been keeping track with the scorecard, but I'm doing this out of memory, and I'm pretty sure that of all the MasterMinds I've been a part of, Jen is the only person ever who showed up every day. Every day in the Slack group she was doing her daily challenge. Every day she was encouraging other people along the way, but I think it's an important part of the story because I feel Jen is so strong, because she knows, hey, if I do the work, and I commit myself to this, anything is possible. Jen, I just needed to make sure everybody knew that.

Ruari: That's as with a lot of everything we've got here. At the end of the day, you're going to see some videos, you're going to read some text, you're going to hear some audio. The rest is up to you, and we see the people who just jump with everything. Of course, you see the obvious impact of that. Amazing. Jen, specifically to the MasterMind, what was your experience of MasterMind and what would you say to others who were thinking that?

Jen: I'm biased, but I really, really loved it. I started in January, so I was about six months into my alcohol-free adventure, and I guess I'm a little bit of a One Year No Beer fan girl because I signed up for 28 days. Then, I was like, well, this is really great, so I'm signing up for 90 days. Then, I saw the alcohol-free me. Well, that sounds good. I'll sign up for that. It just made the progression a little bit easier for me.

It was almost like I was right on the cusp of figuring everything out. I almost did not sign up for MasterMind and what a silly bird I would have been if I didn't sign up for that. MasterMind for me just really helped me get over that hump of what for me my alcohol-free journey was all about which was what is my true self? What is my most authentic self? What do I want to be spending my time with?

If you're in that zone you're almost there, but you're not really in quite there, MasterMind is the perfect venue for you to figure it out with the daily videos and reflections. I do agree with both Chris and Ruari. It's that example of you can sign up for the half marathon but no one's going to run that race for you like you do. You do have to do the work, but it is so worth it. With being alcohol-free you have to put in the work of making your intention known and setting out on your course, but MasterMind really, really helped cement my identity of who I was.

Ruari: Amazing. Well done to you, well done to Chris, and all the team because that is awesome. What are some of the things that changed for you or surprised you in doing the MasterMind? You were like, wow, that you didn't realize, I guess.

Jen: For me one of the things that changed were my limiting beliefs around what I could do. Specifically, back a few minutes ago when Chris was talking about runners and runners run, that's literally an affirmation of mine, but I for years had said, I'm not a runner. I don't like running. That's not for me, and yet I was out there doing it. I had this limiting belief of, well, you can't do that. You're not a runner.

It's just through the MasterMind coursework of getting to write your ‘be’ statements, like what do you want to do? What do you want to be? It's like, I am a runner, I am a yogi, so to really hone in on that identity, it just makes all your decisions a little bit easier when you can root down into who you truly are.

Ruari: Brilliant. I love it. Damian is going to join us and it looks like from this software, sorry that I can't get all four of us on. What I'm going to do is I'm going to drop off and let you three chat. I can still hear you and I'm still here, so don't worry. Chris, you can take the helm.

Chris: He's out. Damian is in.

Damian: Hello.

Chris: I got Damian and Jen. I have to say everyone I am so excited because I had been dreaming for this moment for these two to meet each other. Not for romantic purposes, but because they both are so strong in their journeys of what they've done with MasterMind. Jen did the January MasterMind, and Damian was a part of the April group. Damian, this is Jen, and Jen, this is Damian.

Damian: Nice to meet you, Jennifer.

Jen: Hi. Pleased to meet you.

Chris: You can tell from Damian's setup that he's a mad scientist of some sort back there. Damian, are you a mad scientist?

Jen: […] around. I have boxes upon boxes, I just moved into a new house. I found one little corner that's not a hot mess.

Damian: I'm not a mad scientist. I'm a recovering technologist. I think that's how I describe myself. There's a lot of noise going on behind me, and actually, I'm not going to give any trade secrets away, but there were couple of things in MasterMind that really helped me just to zone in on what I really wanted to do, and that was life-changing as well around how to get rid of a lot of noise and really find out what you want to do. No spoilers on that.

Chris: Damian, will you tell everyone a little bit about your story and background? I think part of what's great about you and Jen being on here is that people will find their stories in your story. I would love for you to just take a couple of steps back and talk about your One Year No Beer journey, and then why did you decide to jump into MasterMind?

Damian: I’ve been very much a corporate man in terms of working and working my way up the corporate ladder, and through doing that, being very focused on being successful. I would say I'm not highly-driven but I am highly-driven. As part of that course, you end up going on a ton of development courses, management courses. I always had this question in the back of my mind of how can I get more time? How can I always get more time?

I read a ton of self-help books, development books, and I came across one book, which was called Eat That Frog. The idea of that is you do the hardest thing you can in the morning. It's from Mark Twain say, whatever the hardest thing is, if it's got to eat a frog, you eat that frog first. In that book, it asked me one question: what is the one thing that you should stop doing?

As soon as I read that, I instantly knew to stop drinking, but then I wanted to find an excuse of why it wasn't that? It was something else. It wasn't drinking, it was probably going out and staying out too late, going to a party, or socializing too much. It was never to drink, and it got to a point where it's like, no, it is to drink. The next book I just scanned on Amazon, it was the 28 Day Challenge.

I read that, I fell in love with the book. It was every day you just turned up and you do the work and there's a theme there around the courses. I did 28 days. I was great for four months and felt wonderful, but then life started to happen, things started to go wrong. I didn't have the toolkit to deal with it, I went off the rails. I ended up revisiting One Year No Beer last September, and I thought the book was great, but if I read the book, I'll probably get the same results.

Go for the 365-day package, and of course you think that's quite a lot of money, and it's nothing compared to how much you're spending on booze. I signed up for that, and that was going really well and it's sticking. It was funny because I was thinking about this morning, and in March, I think it's March the 9th I posted in the One Year No Beer challenges, and I was at a very, very low point.

What's up to March, probably coming up to six months in. In that post, I was basically saying I had everything, yet I was lost. I had everything but I felt I had nothing. Nobody understood me. Nobody understood why I'd given up drinking. Nobody really could understand why I wasn't socializing. I had a different viewpoint of the world myself and everybody else.

At that point, I don't know what's happening here. Everything should be fine. I'm waiting for this to feel great, and then funny enough, just by chance, although I don't believe in chance anymore. The advert for MasterMind came up and in that advert is that picture of Andy and he's all looking, yo, he's in his black shirt. He looks really happy, he's all buffed up, and he's back to where he was.

He was playing football and everything, and the line that Denise said, I look happy here, but I'm not. That is just me right now, and that's when I thought, let's do this. Let's click it and let's see what happens. That's my journey, and that's how I've ended up here basically.

Chris: That's so awesome, Damian. Another little tidbit about Damian and Jen, and what they have in common, both of them should write a book. They both write so beautifully, and when they were sharing their journeys in the daily Slacks, I just thought, my goodness, I would be the first in line at the bookstore to get a book from Jen […] or from Damian.

Ruari, you figured out how to get back in with us in this group? Look at you.

Ruari: Yeah. Great to see everyone […] fiddling tech at the same time. Damian, because I was jumping in out this, apologies if you covered this already, but when did you finish MasterMind?

Damian: I was just on the April one. I think it was two or three weeks ago. It was a sad day.

Jen: It's true. It's like a hole in your heart is gone. I was like, what do I do? Where do I go from here? It's that good.

Ruari: We've got MasterMind groups that are a couple of years old and they are still, well, not since Coronavirus. I think they're meeting online but they were getting together and meeting almost every month and people flying in from Europe and all over the world to meet because they were that connected from the group. It's a very, very powerful thing.

When you go through that, really that is the depth of discovery that you have to do in MasterMind. You've got to pull apart the wires a little bit and some of that stuff's uncomfortable. One Year No Beer, in general, is a very vulnerable place. We open ourselves up, you can see that in the challenges group, people really open up, but then MasterMind takes it to a new level because you are really digging in there, that creates incredible bonds and friendships. Is that how you experienced it without putting words into your mouth?

Jen: For me for sure. I actually have a WhatsApp group that started in the middle of my MasterMind group, and it's a daily connection point, and for a big portion of it because I connected a lot with what Damian was saying about how not feeling understood by your current tribe, but my little tight MasterMind group, I can be my true self and they're like, yup, we get you, girl.

I'm coming into my own with that. I get my real-life people who I see on a daily basis, and granted it's what you make of it, but the connections that I formed were so deep. I'm actually set to run a half marathon with two of the women in my MasterMind group and I feel so connected with them, yet to meet them in person.

Damian: The group that I was in actually, we had our first post-course Zoom on Monday, and it was funny because there's no silver bullet to anything, and the MasterMind isn't going to fix everything. Chris, you were saying earlier, the heavens aren't going to open if you're going to be brilliant all the time it's going to go wrong. For a few of us, myself included, last week was not a great week, but we used the tools that we were given.

We probably responded and reacted differently to how we would have done with previous behaviors, and we regrouped and out of that regrouping, it was like, well, why don't we just get together and do a Zoom like we used to do every Monday at 7:00 and that's what we did. I'd say Chris was very kind and he turned up as well which is absolutely awesome as well.

We now got community and like Jennifer says, I've now got my new tribe, which is already with One Year No Beer challenges, which is brilliant. I've got this other tribe that knows me that a little bit more as well, which is a real good foundation to have.

Chris: Damian in the group they were so nice when I was in there. Jen on the other hand when I popped into a group, she's like, hey, who let this guy in? Why is it here? All of a sudden I felt I was a pastor or something and I just spoiled everybody's party showing up.

Jen: It was like the teacher coming to the kids' lunch.

Ruari: That is awesome. We've got a couple of questions up here and bits and pieces, and then we'll just wrap up unless you guys have anything else you want to add or anything, but feel free to interrupt me. I like this one, so I'm going to put it up. Seriously, the American accent in the beard already makes me think you'd be amazing as a therapist. Talk about preconceived ideas, it also sees some clever stuff that resonates but I think the beard and the accent adds wisdom.

Chris: Thank you.

Ruari: There's so much wisdom in that beard.

Chris: Thank you so much. I grew a beard back in 2002 because my grandmother passed and I went to her funeral, and when I was in Florida, I got this terrible sun rash on my neck, and I couldn't shave. Next thing I knew, everyone was commenting about the beard, so I have kept the beard all since that time. I shaved it once for one contest I was in, and my daughter literally cried.

Damian: Just to add on to the question. It might be inferred that this is a bit of a course where you're going to see a therapist. I probably just want to clear that up a little bit, and I don't want to give away the course content on this as well because you need to go through day by day. You really don't want any spoilers but when you go on to the website of MasterMind, just look at the guests that you've got on there.

You've got Dr. Alan Desmond, who's a nutritional expert. You've got Nick James who has got a fantastic career behind him, and he's a great career coach. You got Gail Davis who's focusing on meditation. You've got Ruari and you've got Andy as well. For me, this isn't just about talking about my problems course. This is how you knit that all together, and I've not seen that done before or been involved in.

Going back to my previous corporate life and stuff, you only get that much of what you really need to change. This knits it all together. It's not about talking about yourself, finding problems, and trying to fix it. That was the mind-blowing thing for me about how it's all connected, and one thing if you get that right, it helps everything out over here. It was amazing.

Ruari: Absolutely well said. Not that there's a lot of reflection, but the most important thing is all of that energy as a group working together in direction because there's so much action taking. You got people going, I'm trying to catch up. There are loads to do and it just goes with a lot of speed. I think that's what we want because that's what’s really everything we built at One Year No Beer is about.

Let's not dwell in all of that stuff. Let's really focus on building new healthy habits routines and getting direction. MasterMind is 100% the extension from that. Check out the website of Some people have just asked what MasterMind is. If you are just joining the live now, don't worry this is recorded. When you go into the group or on the page, once this live finishes, you can click back onto the page and you can watch the beginning of this to hear Chris's story and everybody else's stories. We'll go through it. A couple of other questions here and feel free to interrupt me, guys.

Chris: I wanted to build on a point Damian made, too. I think the wisdom in the group is amazing, and I think that's where a lot of the magic happens. Outside experts we have coming in. I just think that watching the group lean on each other. Someone saying, hey, here's what's going on in my life, and someone else jumping in and saying, oh, I totally live that.

Here's what you could think about is really important, and I think the other side of it is we need people to lift us up when we have these small victories. I think what naturally happens is we think that when we are failing, that what we need on the opposite end is we need people to give us this tough straight talk and really criticize us. The truth of the matter is we actually just need some support and encouragement. That's again, where the tribe really leans on each other.

There were a lot of times where people would put a question in the group where they would be suffering a setback in their life. As the guide or the coach, I'd naturally want to jump in, but before I would even get my hands on the keyboard, somebody else would jump in and offer way better advice than I could ever imagine giving.

Ruari: The magic of unlocking individual intuition and putting people into a group setting like that and allowing. We are incredibly powerful beings, and that's what's amazing about this is that alcohol, that whole process of alcohol, everything about that removes that intuition. That will center itself, it doubles down that voice, and then when you start to let it come forward in which MasterMind is amazing at cultivating that environment for that.

It's amazing what insights. You find yourself typing to reply to somebody and you're like, where did that come from? It just flows through you. It's magic. Terry, because we were talking about Terry before, amazing 230 days and don't even think about alcohol anymore. Terry, that's why MasterMind is absolutely perfect for you at the moment. You've nailed the alcohol thing, let's get you into MasterMind so do check out the site there. Jen, you have a fan? “Jennifer is Wonder Woman.”

Chris: She totally is.

Jen: Yeah.

Ruari: With stream yard if you haven't clicked the link above to permission then we don't know who you are inside the group, but you'll always see by looking in the group, Jennifer who put that post up.

Jen: I have a feeling I might know who that is because I've been called that before in the MasterMind.

Damian: That's Chris, isn't it? Chris, you've been doing that […]

Chris: Exactly.

Ruari: Chris is typing it. I've got another one here. “I do resonate with Jen. Something is holding me back.” Carla, I've got some news for you. It's not something, it's you. What's awesome about that is that we can help you stop holding yourself back and unlock that. Do you agree with that comment guys?

Chris: Yeah.

Jen: Yeah. I know for me. For one of the things, it was a financial thing, and I was like, I don't know if now's the right time. I just started a new job, and I was like, ah, that's a big commitment, and then I really said, hold up. How many times did you go out and spend over $100 in one night on a night out? Okay, add that up, and I was like, oh, yeah. I spent way more doing stuff that was unproductive yet you don't want to take a fraction of that and invest it in yourself?

Girl, that was it. I nerded out. I did the math, and I was like, oh, that's how much it would cost? The benefits that you get from it are priceless. That's just my experience of what was potentially holding me back, and once I did some reflection, I was like, oh, no, it's worth it.

Ruari: Awesome. Well said. Rachel, “I feel for you here because if you're a bit of a roller coaster—yup, that's me—sometimes great, sometimes really struggling not with alcohol but life generally, et cetera. Which thing alcohol-free for me, or MasterMind would you recommend?” Sorry, last question, “What are the qualifications of the people leading it?”

I don't want to answer all the questions, but I'm just going to jump into and lead into this one. I'm a person who's like that, and I go up and down, but the most amazing thing about doing all this work on myself and by the way I have done a lot of work on myself over the years is that those distances between the two, the highs and the lows become so much less. What happens is that we are given the tools and the experience to be able to look after ourselves, and that is all part of this amazing journey.

The thing is Rachel, so often we've used alcohol to numb out that stuff. When we remove the alcohol, we are so often given the things or shown things that we need to deal with the most. That's why you're being given this stuff more right now. The one thing here is the alcohol-free needs a totally different program for people who really want to accelerate their alcohol-free journey.

If you're still challenging or questioning your relationship with alcohol, if you're in that place either in your challenge, resetting whatever it is, if the moment your focus is alcohol, alcohol-free is without a doubt the best program to check out. If you've nailed that, and you're thinking about life, the bigger things, relationships, and work and all those other stuff, MasterMind is absolutely the piece. For the last bit, what are the qualifications of the people leading it? Chris?

Chris: I don’t like to spend a lot of time talking about my resume, but here's what I'd say. My career has been 29 years of change and transformation. It's been coaching people on the personal side, and it's also been helping organizations achieve this in the corporate world. I think that those experiences are helpful, but I would say that what's most helpful has been my own alcohol-free journey.

My own experience as a member with MasterMind, the fact that I'm a father of three children that I'm in a loving marriage. I believe those things actually positioned me to just provide from my toolbox what I know and have experienced in life. I'm not a psychologist. I was super paranoid about that, by the way, when I jumped into this. But I have a dear friend, Dr. Jeff Jennings, who is a psychologist, and we had these conversations about how sometimes the qualifications become so big, that there's the distance between somebody who's helping you and you, that it's actually hard for them to imagine what you've gone through.

In some cases, they are going to provide very clinical advice. That's hard to translate into just everyday living and everyday life. My goal is to just give you everything I've got from a toolbox perspective, and again, just as the guide to make sure that you know where the resources are with experts that help you in specific areas. As an example, we dive in and MasterMind with sleep. I am not a sleep expert. I've never conducted sleep studies. I've never researched sleep. Again, I'm not a doctor, but part of my role as your guiding coach is to help you connect with the experts who do know very much about sleep.

Ruari: Well said, and in terms of my qualifications, well, I did […] because I left school before I could get any qualifications and sell out my first business, but in terms of the qualification, I guess I've helped tens of thousands of people go on to change their life, through our programs. Studied all of the best in habit change and behavior change, to create those things. You could call that the qualifications of the university of life.

The biggest thing with it as we said is the power in the group of the people and the group is really what makes it. Bringing people's intuition forward and helping people to bring that intuition forward when you're talking about a subject is so powerful. 

Last couple of questions. “I thought MasterMind was currently full and there's a waiting list. I would love to join the next cohort.” Previous MasterMind was full and went through. We are now open ready for this MasterMind. It kicks off on the 29th.

Chris: In 29th, yes. We're going to do live Zoom. Live zoom on June 29th. It's our kickoff call. I think I mentioned earlier we do six daily videos a week, and then once a week we get together and do a live Zoom and just talk about how things are going.

Ruari: Awesome. I've lost it. Sorry, finding them a little bit. Here we go. Damian, you're coming for Chris' job.

Chris: That was me again. I was over here typing.

Damian: Jennifer will be there before me. No, no.

Jen: We'll tag team them.

Chris: That would be awesome. I would sign up for that.

Damian: Yeah. I've still got a lot of work to do. The MasterMind cohort, I've seriously thought about doing it again, but it's too fresh for me now, but I think there's a couple of things I'd like to just say around the course about how it all ties together. In terms of some of the paradigm shifts that I had on this course and that I hope that other people will get.

One is the group you see that everybody, there's a number of people that are in the same boat as you, and that just makes you feel much better about your situation that you're in. I've also found and realized through the course that I've got a lot to give, and there's still a lot of my life left to give as well. It’s a bit like drinking and my drinking days. A day would be about surviving and not thriving. It's about waking up, shaking the hangover off, getting to lunchtime, and then trying to just get through the day until the day finishes. I guess my life is a little bit like that before MasterMind. It was about how do I get through until I pull a pension? There are a couple of pivotal moments on the course where you're saying, oh, my God, really? I can't do that. I have got so much left to give.

Doing the course that Chris does is brilliant. I highly recommend it. Again, as I said before, there's no silver bullet, but where I am with it is that I'm much more comfortable in my skin and I was before the course. Basically, I've got this toolbox to dig into when stuff does get tough, and that gives you a level of confidence as well.

Jen: Yeah, I agree. Back to what Rachel was saying about the up and down with life. Sister, there with you, I may have a lovely smile on my face, but I go through ups and downs too. When I post in my other group, they're like, you're always so happy and positive. You don't see them buying them all the time. You don't see this, but I agree with what Damian said. You have those tools set, so when you go through those ups and downs, it flattens out and becomes a little bit easier.

Ruari: You're getting photobombed there. I have kids and […] so I didn't.

Damian: Yeah, I just to say one thing as well, and this is what I was saying to Chris as we were wrapping the course up. Chris knows I'm a bit of a video game fan that anybody's probably spotted all the mess behind me as well.

Ruari: Like the Call of Duty?

Damian: No, not like that. I'm too old and slow for that. The kids […] more strategies.

Ruari: What's your handle? Let's do this and have a go. No, I’m just kidding.

Damian: What we're saying is when we wrapped up and the alcohol-free bit just felt me doing level one, complete in level one and this door had opened to get onto the MasterMind course because if I wasn't on One Year No Beer, I wouldn't have gotten to MasterMind. I said to Chris, I said, you know what, there are so many people I work with, so many friends that I've got, who would just love this course and it would change their life, but they're not ready to give up the drink.

I'm so pleased and privileged that I've done that to then open up MasterMind and that really is the levels four, five, and six for me. There's still a lot of work to do, but for people that are watching this, you're in a gray. If you've got the alcohol piece in the bag, then you're in a good place to take it further.

Ruari: Well said, awesome. Any parting comments for anybody watching this sitting on the fence about MasterMind?

Jen: I think you should do it. Instead of asking and saying in your limiting beliefs of, oh, I don't know. I don't know if I want to do that. What if you took the opportunity to do a deep dive and really figure out who you are? What could happen? Just take the leap and see what happens. You might actually surprise yourself.

Damian: For me, if you're sitting on the fence, you just have to look at the guest and the bonus sessions. Ruari, you, you spent an hour with us and it's small. An hour with us, we can ask you questions directly. We have that with Andy. We had that with Alan Desmond, Gail, and Nick James. The hour that I had with Nick James, and the conferences that he runs are amazing, and I just asked him because my goal was about setting my business up and taking it to the next level.

I just asked him one question. Unlike that writing it all down, oh, god, right, okay, this is great. Just the access that you get, and when you combine that with your community. I learned so much from everybody. Everybody that was putting the work in and doing the Slack and stuff, everybody I learned something even though they're all doing different goals. It really is good. I've not been at such a fast pace of learning for a long time.

Ruari: Brilliant. Thanks very much, you guys for joining us. I really appreciate it. Thanks, Chris for joining us. If you've nailed your alcohol-free challenge, you're not really thinking too much about that, you're thinking about what's next, perfect time for you to come and join us on MasterMind. Check it out at and thank you, the watchers and listeners for joining us this evening. See you all later.

Jen: Bye.

Chris: Bye. Make it a great day.

Ruari: I love that.

Jen: I […] that.

Ruari: See you.

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