PR David | Play For Real


The game of life is continuously changing. It can sometimes be a struggle to deal with it and “play it for real”, as David Wood calls it. David is an international life coach, former Consulting Actuary to Fortune 100 companies and CEO of Play For Real. In this episode he defines playing life for real by being transparent and embracing all of what makes up our lives, including our struggles, our frustrations and even our losses. In this day and age, especially with social media, it’s so easy to fall into identity management. This is when people desire to present to the world only positive, shiny and successful things and when they pretend that bad stuff doesn’t happen. As David dives deeper into identity management, learn the path to acceptance so you can enjoy the ride and play life for real.

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Playing The Game Of Life For Real with David Wood

I feel incredibly lucky and blessed to be sitting here at this moment, sitting in my office, sitting in my seat and sitting here knowing that I’ll have a great conversation with a perfectly new friend. I’ll share more and introduce him. The first thing that came out of my mouth was to say it’s a good day to be alive, breathe. What a great reminder because much of what I lose track of, and I’ve got to assume this is true for everybody, is losing track in the moments of the day. How joyful I am to be alive, grateful, lucky and privileged in every other thing to be. I feel like we take those things for granted. I know I do. I take those things for granted. Like in a business sense, often I find with people that we work with that a lot of people take for granted how good they are at things. How much expertise they have, how much they have that’s worth sharing with other people. Meaning how many things they have to say that would be valuable for others. They do that and I’ll use myself as an example, because we will take it for granted that this is who we are and this is what we do.

Why is that at a certain point if you walk past a wall that has some art on it, maybe the first time you walk past that wall, you may think, “That’s beautiful. That’s incredible art.” If you pass that wall and you pass that art every single day for twenty years, I don’t know that in year eighteen that you walk past that wall with the energy of wonder, like the eyes of a child, this enthusiastic viewpoint that you look at that wall and go, “Those colors are interesting. It’s magnificent.” You get at a certain point where you go, “That’s just a wall. It’s just that outside art on the wall.”

We look at ourselves in the same way. I’m not as wonderful, as unique or as somehow uniquely qualified to share something with others as I might otherwise believe where the first time that I was experiencing myself. Maybe in this moment as we start, we can all feel into that energy of what it would be like and how is it that we consciously create an experience of being that is us experiencing ourselves being, maybe for the first time or with a new set of eyes and truly appreciating how magnificent and how unique we are. It was in Og Mandino’s amazing book, The Greatest Salesman in The World, one of the scrolls is, “I’m this unique creation of nature. I’m the world’s most unique being,” and things like that. It’s bears repeating. I have the blessing of being in conversation with a gentleman that is quite unique and his experience is certainly unique.

The work he’s been doing in the world for more than twenty years is breathtaking. We have a lot of common friends. We have a funny story about how this podcast came about through one of those interesting synchronicities, but I’ll save that for later. His name is David Wood. He has a very unique perspective. In fact his quote is, “When you are 10,000 feet above the Himalayas hanging from a piece of cloth, you see life differently.” I want you to imagine that for a second. This is where imagining what it would be like to see ourselves through the eyes of a child. Imagine yourself 10,000 feet above the Himalayas hanging from a piece of cloth. What would you experience? What would you be feeling? What would you be sensing at that moment? He holds the viewpoint that life is the best game there is and asks, “Are you playing for real?” We’re going to get into that, “What does it mean to play for real?”

He coaches high-performing entrepreneurs, executives and leaders to play the best game they possibly can, living a regret-free life. How? By setting life-changing goals, laser-focused and increasing their levels of truth, daring, caring in both life and work. He loves sharing his message of playing for real on live stages, podcast interviews and radio shows and has been best described as playful and deep. It’s a great way to be described. A former consulting actuary to Fortune 100 companies including Sony Music, Procter & Gamble and Exxon. He left his cushy Park Avenue job many years ago to explore both the outer worlds and his own inner world. Along the way, he’s coached thousands of hours in dozens of countries around the globe and is the author of Get Paid for Who You Are with a foreword by our mutual friend, Jack Canfield. David, it’s a great pleasure to have you on the show. Thanks for being with us.

Thank you, Adam. I’m enjoying myself already.

That’s an incredible bio. I’d love to know what’s not written in that bio that you would love for people to know about you?

You mentioned truth, daring and caring. Something I’m trying to do more and more of in my life is reveal and transparency. It’s easy, particularly in a bio and on Facebook to do identity management. We want to present to the world how everything’s positive, shiny and all that successful stuff and pretend the other stuff doesn’t happen. I’d like people also to know that I’ve experienced loss and deep pain. I lost my sister when I was seven years old, so that has had a big impact on my life. I’ve had a lot of experience with anxiety and depression, so it’s not like I wake up every day totally pumped and succeeded by clicking my fingers. Sometimes it’s an effort to send an email, but we all get to work with what we have. I’d like people to know that I have bad days too. I have terrible days and I have good days. I’m a mixture, as most of us are.

Thanks for going there with that. I feel like I want to reveal something too. I don’t want to plus what you’ve set out. I’ve had my own share of anxiety. Even though that feeling doesn’t come to me too often these days, I still get my own way in other ways. I sometimes battle procrastination. I’m maybe a recovering perfectionist but I can sit with an email, making more out of it than whatever or putting it off so long for things. I wake up in the morning and that’s the crucial point of my day is to start off on the right foot as my grandmother used to say. Some days I wake up and it feels gray. I’m down, lack of energy, pissed off or whatever it is. Identity management is a big activity for a lot of folks. In many ways, it may even be pushing people further apart on some level. If you’re known as something, where you’ve curated a personal brand that says you are something in the world, whether that’s in the business space or it’s otherwise, to do something that conflicts with the brand or damage the brand, it’s a concern people have.

We all have to work with what we have. Click To Tweet

One thing that I want for everybody, I want it for me and I want it for everyone, is to like themselves more. This identity management goes against that. The more we present this positive stuff to the world, the more we’re saying, “The rest of me is not okay.” I’m a big fan of the book, Ender’s Game. In the series, someone becomes a speaker for the dead. When he speaks, he doesn’t give the normal eulogy about all the positive stuff. He speaks about the whole person, the dreams they didn’t fulfill, their frustrations, their losses, their sorrows as well as all the rest. I’m inspired by that. Let’s embrace all of us. That’s the journey that we’re on. That’s the journey I’m encouraging with everyone.

Embracing things is important. What does that word embrace mean? It’s pretty obvious on some level but David, what does it mean to you to embrace something?

The first step might be to tolerate it. Let’s say with my energy levels, when I wake up and I feel like crap and I don’t want to do anything, the first step would be to say, “Can I at least put up with this instead of fighting it so much? Can I share it with some people so I’m not hiding it anymore?” I think that’s the path to acceptance. Once I was having a rough day, a friend of mine said, “I hear that you’re sad and you’re crying.” He said, “Enjoy the ride.” That was the best thing I could have heard. It’s like, “If I’m going to feel like this, I might as well enjoy the ride. Maybe I’ll get some ice cream. Maybe I’m going to watch a sad movie. I’m going to snuggle up in bed. I’m going to enjoy feeling like this. I may as well, it’s already happening.” I embrace everything.

Think about it, if we resist it, there’s another energy that gets involved in it. It may even exacerbate it on some level. Meditation has become something that I’ve been more interested in of late. I love to pray. I love to get into still stillness and be with God, but I didn’t meditate per se. Meditation is new to me. In fact, in a TEDx Talk, I outed myself to say that my dirty little secret is I’m a crummy meditator. I got a new little bit new leverage on meditation in the idea that first of all, there’s no right or wrong way to do it. The key is that I have to keep my mind still anyway. It’s allowing the thoughts to be present almost as though you look up in the sky. I’m a big visual learner. As I look at something, I take it in. Imagine looking up at the sky and seeing clouds. This is a very common experience for us. Look up and see the clouds. If you look up ten minutes later, the clouds are different. It could be that the sun’s out. Ten minutes later, the sun’s not out. It’s cloudy. It completely feels different.

Thoughts are the same way. They come and go like clouds and it will be almost trying to reach up when you think about the way we dwell on it and go, “I feel like crap or this person is ignoring me, or I didn’t get that job. The money’s tight this month,” or whatever it is. We always obsess about stuff. You look up at that cloud of that thing and try to wrap your hands around it, hold it and keep it. That’s not the nature of it. It will change and pass on its own, except we’re trying to make so much out of it. The thoughts themselves are not truth. They’re literally a thing that does not necessarily represent truth. Do you buy into that?

I agree with you. The mind is trying to help. That’s why it’s happening. If it didn’t do that, we might die, get killed by a bear, hit by a car or something. The mind is latching onto something and thinks it’s a problem and wants to work on it. It’s that we’re not being chased by tigers every day anymore. It’s not necessary. I had a date with someone I like. I want to see her again but nothing exclusive. She had a date with someone else and it keeps coming into my mind. I’m playing Poker with the boys. I’m having a good time. They come into my mind and I can see how I could latch onto it, worry about it, try and work it out and protect myself. I didn’t do that. Fortunately, in this case, I noticed it. I’m like, “I’m good. I hope she has a good time and I go back to what I was doing.” That’s part of the game. Can we not get latched onto those thoughts or those things that are problems? If you’re going to work on it, work on it. Work on the problem, fix it, do something. If you’re worried about something that is no practical action to take, that seems superfluous worry.

I used to say this to myself when I was a lawyer years ago. I would say you can’t win without worry. It’s interesting because on some level, I was convinced that my winning in life, in business and in the law even with the actual cases I took, it was because I worried better than my competitor. I worried better than my adversary. If I worried more, I would win more. That was the concept. I feel like it’s interesting that I tied this fear to accomplishment. It was a link between those two things that they were together. I certainly feel that when there’s a problem to deal with, you’ve got to deal with it, but there’s also an opportunity to create space, not just for the problem to resolve itself but for the way I approached the problem to be guided from a different place. As opposed to me being guided from fear, the fear of loss, the fear that something’s going to be taken from me, that I have to protect and guard myself, that whole guarding way of being had me competing with the world. I’m endlessly anxious, in angst, angry a lot of times and unhappy. That’s an epidemic in our world that we are so on-guard. We can live on grace instead of being on guard. We can live in a guided way versus in a guarded way.

It is an epidemic. I grew up thinking that my circumstance is what would give me happiness or pain. It was how I grew up. It wasn’t even told to me because everybody lives like that. If you improve your house, your money, your relationship and everything, you’ll be happy. I’ve since come to believe after a lot of work with Byron Katie, she says the worst thing that can happen to you is a thought. I’ve since come around to that way of thinking. It took some time but I realized when my thoughts are painful, I’m in pain. When my thoughts are good, regardless of what’s happening around me, I’m good.

I acknowledged that most of the world doesn’t live that way and that’s fine. When you start to take on that point of view, is it possible that my thinking could be causing a lot of my pain and stress and worry and that it’s not required? Then the question becomes, how do you shift it? I had this conversation with a client and he was stressed. We identified what’s behind everything. At the bottom we finally got to the thoughts, because most of us don’t even know what the thoughts are. They’re just there. “They’re not thoughts. It’s reality.” No, it’s thought. “Am I enough? Are people going to think that I’m enough?” That was his thing. He’s found two very different ways to combat it. One is he’s using ritual, which was interesting because I know that’s a big topic for you. He’s got daily disciplines that he’s doing and he’s feeling great about himself. We identified that is shifted. He’s in confidence doing what’s right for him. I call it integrity. The second thing which he brought up is the core beliefs. I use the Byron Katie Work with my clients for that. I find it’s like a mental Ninjutsu. Once you identify the thought, you get in there with a little surgery and it can self-destruct. It’s the fastest thing I’ve found to dismantling.

PR David | Play For Real

Ender’s Game (The Ender Quartet series Book 1)

I was in my head debating whether I wanted to share this or not, but I’m going to go for it. I’m very influenced by Emmet Fox. He’s been a tremendous mentor to me. It’s one of the cool things about mentorship is the mentor doesn’t have to even be alive. Emmet Fox passed away in 1951. He’s a scientist, philosopher and a metaphysician spiritual teacher. He had a lot of great work. Power Through Constructive Thinking is one of his books. I have this around the year. At the beginning of the year, he’s talking about our mental diet. He was also sharing some things about the aspects of God. God means different things to people including people who don’t believe in God. It means something different entirely. I don’t mean anything religious by it and certainly I’m not ascribing it to a particular religion, but the sense for me is that there’s a Creator, I’m a part of infinite creation of the universe that is so much bigger than me and yet I am a piece of it.

It’s like being a spark of a big fire. You’re not the entire fire but you’re a spark of that fire. I feel certainly that’s the case. That feels accurate for me. In describing these aspects of God, Emmet was saying that God is life itself, not an aspect of life. I thought, “That makes sense. There’s a little bit of reading about that.” God is truth. In that reading, I started to think to myself, what else is truth? Where does Truth exist and what isn’t truth? That’s where this collision of my work on the meditation side. That came together and said, “Are my thoughts true?” It gave me this great release from the pressure that somehow the things that are going on inside my head, whatever that energy is that my mind is creating, it’s somehow maybe a fiction. It’s something made up. It’s doesn’t exist. There’s no truth in it. It’s freeing.

I’m reminded of your cloud analogy. Think about how you could look at a cloud and say that’s a dog because it’s in the shape of a dog but it’s a moving, amorphous mass that’s changing from moment to moment. There’s nothing true about it.

It leaves you in a funny place because if my thoughts are not Truth, then what do we do with them? What do I do with them? You can notice them. You can be aware of them.

You can examine them. That’s the Byron Katie Work. Put a flashlight on it and investigate, is this true? I don’t know if I’ve found one yet that I’m absolutely sure it is true.

This idea of embracing is also pretty cool because there are ways to approach it. You can resist it, you can accept it or you can ignore it, which we do a lot of times. There are things in our lives we don’t want to deal with and we ignore. We also can embrace them. There’s something special about embracing. Ram Dass said, “We have to make friends with change.” That’s embracing. That’s loving energy around it. When I look back, one of the things that I have had difficulty embracing as a thought and as a pattern of thinking has been the fear of the unknown. Anytime I find myself stressed, in old patterns of being driven by fear and angry as a result, it’s usually because there’s something unknown that I can’t control. This craving for control and to know what is unknowable, like what’s going to happen in the next moment as an example, it’s interesting. To embrace things, including the things that scare us, is an interesting concept. Do you do that? Is that a part of what your own path has been?

That’s the game. When you’re playing the game of life and you are playing for real, the game is constantly like, “Can I embrace what’s happening?” It doesn’t mean you can’t try and shift it or change it in the next second, but can I embrace what’s happening? I don’t always. There are some things that I still resist but I’m getting better and quicker. My psychiatrist called me counterphobic, which I’d never heard that word until 2018. I lean into anything I’m scared of. We’ve mentioned truth, daring and caring. The daring part of it is I don’t want to leave anything on the table. When I die, I want to know that I gave it everything. I was afraid of abandonment. I leaned into open relationships to see if I could breathe through that. I’m afraid of heights, so I fly above the Himalayas in a paraglider. Whatever I’m scared of, I try and lean into it because I don’t want it to have power over me.

David, I know that you’ve had some significant changes in your own life. The word we use in the show is the pivot. It’s a fun word for these changes. Take us into that. What was it like to make some of those more significant shifts? Were you embracing it at the time? Were you able to breathe while it was going on or were you holding your breath and white knuckling it like many of us do?

I have this idea based on my experience that taking on something new when the stakes are high is naturally scary. That’s part of this human existence. The pivot that I made, it wasn’t like I woke up and consciously said, “I want to pivot today. This is my new direction and I know exactly how it’s going to pan out.” That’s not how it went. I was in Bali and I was almost retired. I had a nice life. I had staff that would wash my scooter and brings me food and it was an amazing life. I had Visa problems and I had to leave Bali with hours’ notice. It was the same day. I had a life there. I had everything set up. I had a villa. I realized too that I can’t always live on savings. I can’t do it for the rest of my life. It’s going to run out. I thought, “What am I going to do to make money?”

When your thoughts are painful, you're in pain, but when your views are good, regardless of what's happening around, you're good. Click To Tweet

The natural response for me is some service. I have to do some service in the world. A friend of mine said, “You’ve been a coach for twenty years, why don’t you go back to coaching because you’re good at it?” I was burned out on coaching because I was done with that niche. I’ve been working with coaches for twenty years and helping them build their business. I said everything there was to say for me. I started thinking, “Who would I love to work with?” That was the pivot for me. It didn’t come up in a day. It’s taken over a year to work out who I want to work with, to create the play for the real brand and to get new clients in this niche, to prove to myself and others that I’m good at that. I’m producing results. It’s been scary and sometimes it’s still scary because I don’t know the future and there’s always a chance that your pivot is going to bomb. There’s usually that chance. If there was no chance it was going to bomb, you might not be picking a big enough path. You’d be bored. One of my teachers who’s now dead said, “Without doubt, what you produce would have no value.”

It’s being on your growth edge.

If you know 100% that you can do something, you’re going to get bored to tears. It will have no value.

Do you mind sharing the name of your mentor that’s passed?

His name is Vic Baranco and he created an organization called the Morehouse, which was a onetime university. The guy knew a lot about how to have a good time in life. That was what he studied. People came to him and said, “What’s going on with you? Can you show us what you’ve learned?” One of the things that he taught, you embodied and modeled at the beginning of this show, which was appreciation. He said, “Where there’s appreciation, there is growth.” I noticed you enjoy breathing. You enjoy being alive. You talked about enjoying art. I’m glad to get to know you in that way because I want to hang out with people like you who are grateful for life. You can still add more on, there’s always room for that. Those are a couple of things that he taught. I’ve had plenty of doubt in this pivot and sometimes I’m like, “Is this going to work? I have other times when I have faith I’m like, “This is awesome. If it doesn’t work, I’ll pick something else.” I definitely got that right.

I find myself falling off the faith wagon a lot. We all do. It doesn’t feel good. Every time I get back up and dust myself off, I apologize. I make an apology for needing proof again. I’m such a needy child. I wish I wasn’t. I don’t to be.

I’m glad to hear you say that. A friend of mine said a long time ago, “I’m needy and that’s okay.” I never heard anyone say that. He’s like, “I’ve got plenty of needs and I’ve been trying to hide them because that’s not attractive and no one would want to know me.” That’s not how it works. You tell people, “These are my needs. Can you help me meet them? No? That’s fine. I’ll just be honest about it.” It’s a whole different ballgame.

It’s a totally different thing. My wife, Randi and I, we’ve joked about this and even shared it in the form of retreats and things around the world. Relationships in many ways are challenged because people have expectations. I remember coming home one day and it was one of those moments where I walked in the house, I sit there and say, “I got it.” She probably ignored me for the first five minutes, but then I kept pestering her and I said, “There’s something I want to share with you.” She stopped doing what she was doing and said, “What is it?” I said, “For the relationship program we’re developing, I believe that the root of the problem for people is that they have expectations of each other. That’s the problem. They have expectations.” In classic Randi form, she looked at me and said something like, “You’re an idiot. What do you mean? You can’t have expectations. What are you talking about?” I go, “Thank you. I appreciate that.” I went on with my tail between my legs and I went off back to wherever my thinking seat was.

A couple of days later, it hit me and I went back to her and I said, “Now it’s finally distilled.” I got too enthusiastic. I was overzealous. It wasn’t quite cooked yet but here’s the deal. She said, “I’m waiting now. This better be good.” I said, “It’s not expectations that’s the issue. It’s unstated expectations that are the issue.” She did what you did and nodded. I said, “That’s where we meet people too in this area. When you don’t share what it is that you want or your needs as we were discussing them. You keep those things to yourself. They’re your dirty little secrets. When you need something, whatever that something is, whether it’s in bed or it’s by way of any other thing, then you’re setting yourself up and that partner for failure.” That’s one of those frustrating things in life that people aren’t getting what they want or aren’t getting their needs met because they’re not stating out outwardly.

PR David | Play For Real

Play For Real: When you’re playing the game of life, play it for real and embrace what’s happening.


I agree, which to me is part of the truth. It’s realizing your own truth sharing it. I caught myself, I only realized it. I had a call with a colleague and found out a bunch about what was going on in her world. She said, “What’s happening for you?” I said a couple of lines we went straight back to talking about her. I realized I didn’t speak. What was happening for me is that I would have liked her to ask me some more questions about it and have some curiosity. Whether she did or not, I could at least share, “I’m noticing I have a desire for this.” I didn’t do that. I’m setting her up. I’m complicit in her failing to meet my needs.

You’re perpetrating.

I’m guessing that you espouse and teach this personal responsibility. For me, it’s not because it’s right on moral, it’s because it seems to work better. If I can take responsibility for the fact that she didn’t do what I want, I’ve got more access to it and I’m not pissed anymore. It’s like I could’ve done a little education there and it might have been an amazing moment. There’s a good chance when I see her that I will bring this up to see what’s possible. I want to touch too on what you said. I love what you said about, “I fell off the faith wagon.” What I want for our audience is not that you stay on the faith wagon all the time because that’s not going to happen. You will doubt your own production and that’s fine.

What I want is perhaps we can bring those two concepts we mentioned together, the doubt and appreciation. Can we appreciate falling off the wagon and acknowledge that’s part of the game? That’s part of how it works. I’m going to doubt myself. I’m going to talk to some friends. I want to talk to my coach. I’m dusting myself off. I’m going to get back in the game so I can have the big wins or I can have something else that’s coming, but can we appreciate that and not kick ourselves for like, “I fell off the faith wagon. You’ve got to have faith.” You’ve got to know a little bit of gentleness.

Be gentle with yourself. That’s a wonderful take away from that for me. I want to close a couple of loops. You mentioned a book called the Ender’s Game and I’m not familiar with that. Who is the author of that book?

It’s Orson Scott Card. Ender’s Game was a big movie with Harrison Ford in it. I’m a Sci-Fi fan and the book blew me away. The speaker for the dead when that came through, it was like, “Wow.”

Byron Katie, I believe she’s a member of this TLC group, the Transformational Leadership Council.

I would be surprised and excited if that’s true.

I’ll check on that too. You and I are both members of this wonderful organization.

Realize your own truth and start sharing it. Click To Tweet

She’s not listed.

I thought Byron Katie was a member. Maybe she’s there or something and that’s where I saw her name.

That would be awesome. I think I tried to make that happen. I see her like Eckhart Tolle. I see her so far up there. I can’t see why she’d want to come and be relational with people. I spent a bit of time with her. I don’t know if that’s her thing, but it would make my life if she came to hang out.

The thing is there are some people that come and go in that organization. From time to time you see them there like Lynne Twist, for example.

Marianne Williamson and John Demartini, I’ve seen some people come and go.

A little trivia here, but the Transformational Leadership Council is where they filmed The Secret. Rhonda Byrne’s ridiculously successful book and the video was filmed at TLC Retreat. It’s one of those little things for all those folks at the time. What’s a great Byron Katie book that you could recommend to our folks?

I think a first one is Loving What Is. That’s a nice introduction. That didn’t do it for me. I read it but it didn’t change my life. I didn’t get a ritual out of it. It wasn’t until I hired a coach and the coach would go through the work with me. That started the shift I went to the nine-day school for the work. It was like I was high. It was such a state of consciousness shift being in that environment. I did change my life doing that. I went and did a month with her. I had Turnaround House and now it is a habit. If I’m in pain and I identify the thought, I’ll run it through in my head. That’s a ritual that I use. Loving What Is is a good intro. There were plenty of videos online where you can watch her do the work with somebody.

There are different mentors for us at different seasons. I’ve gotten into this in the last few years that I quietly started taking on some private mentorship clients as we were shifting and pivoting in our business. I do quite a bit more public speaking and we lead public speaking workshops out of our home, which is a joy for us. I also started to do some more one-on-one work with folks, which has been so much fun. At different seasons in our lives, when somebody can help to move us or help us to find our own movement, we develop new rituals, things change and shift. You led me into the place I wanted us to land, which is on that topic of rituals anyway. You shared already a couple of what you do to deconstruct a thought. Are there other rituals that you have each day that set you up for success?

I have one that you might call a ritual. There’s a Byron Katie process that I found is wonderful for peace. I’m exercising almost every day and that’s a self-care. I would call that a ritual. I do it ritualistically. I get out there and I do it even when I don’t feel like doing it. It’s a self-care thing. It’s something I’ve been doing. I love it, particularly for someone who works alone and works from home. I pulled together a part of people and we check in at the top of every hour for three or four minutes. It’s amazing. We’ll get in and I’ll say, “Last hour, next hour,” and people give a couple of sentences about what they did and what they’re going to do. We go through that, then we get back to work. I set a timer for 25 minutes. I’ll take a few minutes break after that. I do another 25 minutes and I am so focused on what I’m doing. I know I told people what I’m going to do and I want to be able to report that I did it. If I don’t do it, at least my awareness has increased tenfold. I’m seeing where I’m getting distracted and that I’m not doing something. There’s a tension on it. I’m a massive fan of regular check-ins like that.

PR David | Play For Real

Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life

Productive is a word that’s got a lot of charge from me at the moment because I see productivity is a word that means in the corporate space driving people harder, getting more done with less and getting more out of folks. Yet the word itself is not a bad word and I’m not assigning any bad meaning to it. As a society, as a global community, we are more exhausted. We have to create more rituals around recovery and what it takes to be more resilient, but the recovery piece is a big deal. A large part of that is self-care, how it is that we recover. To have a ritual where 50 minutes is devoted to this more focused activity and ten minutes is centered around either feedback or some other renewal is fantastic. We have a 40/20 Rule on our side, but that’s a cool thing that you’ve got this little pod. You check in with each other at the top of the hour and check things out. How many people are in that group?

I have a thread on Facebook with maybe six or seven. In any given day it’s usually two or three, maybe four who show up for the check-ins. We commit to what hours we’re going to do. “I’m going to do 10:00 until 4:00.” If no one shows up, I still get value because I show up, I get in the Zoom room and I speak out loud. I say, “This is what I did in the last hour. This is what I’m doing in the next hour.” You could even do it alone, but it’s nice to have other people to do it. I got the idea from Stever Robbins who is called the Get-It-Done Guy. He has a program that you can sign up for and do it and you go over two months or three months and you’ll do these regular days. Plus, he’s got some other tools. I’ve taken on this key part of it for me.

Have you seen that your focus is increased and the accountability that you have also ramped up?

I think everybody should go through this process because I had no idea how scattered I was. When I say I’m going to do this, the whole hour goes by and I did five other things. I didn’t know that my mind was like a monkey on crack. This has been valuable for me to see if what I say matches what I do and then bring them into alignment. There’s a huge value in that.

It’s a great tool. David, thank you so much for your time and for the insights that you’ve shared with this community. I appreciate you.

You’re welcome. How may I make an offer to the community?

The one thing I will share as we depart is again, when it comes to these rituals for creating self-care, for being more resilient, being able to utilize all these things, it’s fundamental that we are committed to something like what you described, some new practice, especially when we know that we’re in our own way. Our community is called Start My PIVOT on Facebook. Most of the folks who are reading know that already. Feel free to go to What’s there for you is our Resilience Regeneration Toolkit. It’s something we’ve been working on for many months. It started out as a little project where it was going to be a kickstart guide or something. It morphed into what is almost like a treatise on how it is that we can recover mentally, emotionally, physically and even spiritually during the day to get recharged, recover and become more resilient. A big component of that is what you said, David. It’s centered around rituals for self-care. I thank you so much for teeing that up.

To the folks reading this, however you felt about it, we love your feedback. We love it if you loved it, but your truthful feedback is what’s valuable to us. You can leave a comment and we’ll reply. More likely than not, it’s me replying to that. I love doing that and I appreciate the honesty. Please leave your feedback there. Lastly, as we started with our own appreciation for this present moment, I’m reminded of what a blessing it was that I got to wake up and it’s a blessing that David got to wake up as well. For everybody, wherever you are, I don’t need to know you by name at this moment to know that it’s a blessing that you woke up. I hope that you feel that way as well and that you’re willing to set the intention as you’re reading to this, that you wake up again tomorrow.

I know I’m going to put my hand on my heart and set that intention. There’s no guarantee that any of us do get to wake up again. In fact, as you’re taking that first waking breath as I know you will, I’m confident you will. I have faith that at that moment that you’re taking that breath, you can be aware that people are taking their final breaths. Babies are also being born and they’re taking their first breath of life. There’s something sacred and even holy about that moment. You can take ten seconds. This is the ritual, if you will that I’ll encourage you to take on, which is to take ten seconds, put your feet on the floor tomorrow, feel gratitude and appreciation as you take that breath, appreciation for yourself and for every other divine being in our glorious universe. If you’re inclined to even declare these words out loud, they’ve changed my life. I’ve gotten to share them all over the world. Maybe they’ll offer you something as well, “I love my life, I love my life,” those are the four simple words. David, do you love your life?

At this moment, I do.

We’ll see you soon. Ciao for now.


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About David Wood

PR David | Play For RealDavid coaches high performing entrepreneurs, executives, and leaders to play the best game they possibly can, living a regret-free life. How? By setting life-changing goals, laser-focused action, and increasing their levels of Truth, Daring, and Caring – in both life and work.

He loves sharing his message of Playing for Real on live stages, podcast interviews, and radio shows, and has been best described as “playful, and deep”.

A former Consulting Actuary to Fortune 100 companies – including Sony Music, Proctor & Gamble, and Exxon – David left his cushy Park Avenue job 20 years ago to explore both the outer world and his own inner world. Along the way, he’s coached thousands of hours in a dozen countries around the globe and is the author of Get Paid For Who You Are, with a foreword by Jack Canfield.

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