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Ep. 114 Challenge, Adversity & Returning the Oculus

by | Smart AF Show


Challenge, Adversity & Returning the Oculus

These days you hear a lot of people complain about any adversity they face, People even shield their kids from it. But look at any successful person and they’ll tell you without adversity, without those challenges, they would’ve never found success.

In this episode, Torie Mathis & her cohost Sean talk about the importance of adversity and challenge; in life, business, and for your kids, and how self-made adversity can be a catalyst to great things and tremendous success. And an appreciation for the Oculus.

Listen or watch the full episode below:


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(transcription is auto-generated)

SAF 114

[00:00:00] Torie: And he knows that that’s the deal. And I already, one time had to say wrap that Oculus up. We’ll send it back. But now I like the Oculus.

[00:00:16] Sean: Right.

Hey, what’s up. It’s Torie Mathis, your host. And I am here with the one and only Sean Mathis, Founder of Miles Through Time Automotive Museum. 

What’s going on? 

[00:00:27] Torie: You know, I was talking to Riley the other day because he was having a hard time in his karate class because some of the things that he’s doing are very challenging.

And I told him as a kid that has it pretty easy growing up. Not a lot of challenges in his life. Like you have to actually put yourself in some challenging situations. You have to actually give yourself some adversity. If you don’t actually have any in your life. It’s good to challenge yourself. What do you think?

[00:00:59] Sean: Well, I think what happens is it’s real easy to, you know, wind up almost just kind of being lazy in a sense that because you’re not used to challenging yourself. You almost don’t want to, and it can go the opposite way. You know, some of those adrenaline junkies, right. What they’re doing is they’re constantly challenging themselves and getting the rush. And I think it’s just. 

[00:01:24] Torie: They probably can never sit at home and do normal stuff. 

[00:01:26] Sean: Right. But because of that, they get to accomplish all these amazing things. And I think it’s just a switch that everybody has. That they just need to need to switch on if it’s off. And that’s one of those things that as a kid, you know, it’s our job to make sure that that switch gets turned in the right direction.

Otherwise, you know, it seems like our, you know, our son Riley for example, is perfectly content just sitting there. Playing his video games all day and he may think he’s getting challenged. You know, I’m going to get better and better at this level. And what’s he always says, it’s so rare, like fucking everything on that game is super rare.

And yet somehow he gets it constantly. 

[00:02:04] Torie: And he’s like, there’s a lot of things that are super rare. I’m like, dude, that means it’s not rare. 

[00:02:10] Sean: No, but I mean, none, none of that is like really challenging him in any other way, other than, you know, Clicks buttons on a screen or something. And when he goes and does karate, like it’s taking him out of that comfort zone, you know, where he’s got a kick you know, so many times in certain height and, you know, do the pushups and planks and all these things.

[00:02:32] Torie: The big thing was like, I think he accepted the challenge of doing the regular karate, but barring class as an extra class. And so he was with a lot of, he was actually the only new, new guy in there. Everything else, everybody else was black belts. And it was really hard for him. But again, the kid has no adversity, like, and I was talking to him about just like growing up.

I didn’t have the greatest childhood. Like it wasn’t like we were homeless by any means, but like I moved a lot. My parents were divorced. There was like all kinds of there’s adversity there. I switched high schools too. I’m from a really small rural school to an inner city very, very different, very much bigger school.

Like there were some legit big challenges there. And so if you look back, I’m like, well, I’m happy that I went through that stuff because it made me able to deal with shit. It gave me skills that I can see that our kids being a little privileged, you know, they’re not getting those challenges. 

[00:03:36] Sean: I mean, even some of these kids, I remember going through basic training, even though it was super long ago. I only had so much adversity in my life. And yet there were still things that happened as, as any kid would go through. 

[00:03:50] Torie: But he played sports. 

[00:03:51] Sean: I played sports. I interacted with people, you know, there’s things that I found were difficult, but then still wound up doing, but it wasn’t until I actually went to basic training that I get really, you have no choice, but to get through it. Right. I mean, they throw all kinds of stuff at you that you wish you could just be like, I don’t want to do that. You know, and that’s not an option. And what you quickly realize is you can do it, you know, when there’s that two mile run or you’re, you’re doing a hike with all your gear on and you’re going 10 miles. Like it seems unimaginable to be able to accomplish something like that, especially if you’ve never done it before. And then you wind up doing it and you’re like, holy shit, I can do it. And that’s where that switch. If you can turn it on and just be like, I want to keep challenging myself and finding out what I can do.

We talked the other day every once in a while I get this urge. I just want to go run as far as you can. And, and just, just to see how far I can go. No, no particular reason. Just, I want to challenge myself. 

[00:04:51] Torie: Yeah. Well, I’ve talked to Riley several times. Like he had a couple of difficult kids last year that were just being shitheads and giving him a hard time and I’m like, I can kind of tell you what I would do. I can like, you know, give you some slight advice, but you have to go through this and you have to figure it out yourself because this is setting you up. And the social skills that you’re not born with, like experience is the only way that you’re going to gain this type of, you know, of skills. Like you have to go through shitty kids.

You have to go through a little bit of hard times because that’s the only kind of like, sorry, buddy. That’s what you gotta do. But I think if. If you pull your kids out or even pull yourself out of any of these challenging situations, you’re losing so much experience that you’re not going to be able to get anywhere.

I look at myself as like, I grew up in my house as an only child. And so I don’t have like those brother and sister every day, all day, somebody around like, and I think there was like a lack of social skills there too, that I think I really gained in the army. Cause that was the first time that I was forced to be around other people my age, that there was no escaping them, you know, just like people have with siblings.

Like I didn’t get that growing up. Right. Those are just skills that like I was not, and I like looking back now, I’m like, well talking about this whole thing, like if you’re not getting, you know, naturally having some type of challenges, like that’s definitely a challenge. I didn’t get it was good that I didn’t know I was, but I forced myself into that social situation that now I do have those skills. Whereas somebody else that was maybe an only child that grew up that maybe didn’t play sports that didn’t have it. Like they never, they might have never got those skills. 

[00:06:31] Sean: Right. Well, it’s like this podcast, right? Like we’d never know. This before we actually took the steps to do it. And initially, like it was nerve wracking and difficult to even sit here and stare at the screen, trying to think of something to say, and then eventually, you know, something, you just, you just keep doing it. And eventually, it’s, you know, we overcame that adversity and now he can sit here and turn everything on and get straight to whatever it is we need to talk about, but it didn’t just happen.

And it wouldn’t happen if we didn’t at least start initially and try to get. To get better at it, rather than running away from it. And then now we can’t do that. We don’t have time, you know, I don’t like talking that much, you know, all these different excuses that make it, so you ultimately just end up not doing any of this.

[00:07:19] Torie: Well, you always hear like, the most growth comes right outside your comfort zone. And so if you never get outside of that comfort zone, it definitely is you’re not going to have that growth that you definitely could be. I think that you have to make sure that you get your foundations and your fundamentals like you don’t want to push yourself out of your comfort zone by trying something new at your business, but then you don’t have your like regular business shit covered. And so your business suffers. So I think you really need to make sure that your, your fundamentals are taken care of and then like you, you need to, whatever it is at the gym at your job, because that’s how you don’t get bored either.

Like I used to go to the gym and I like did the little elliptical lifted a couple of weights and it was kind of boring and we didn’t go as often as we do now that it’s a lot more challenging. Like I’m constantly pushing myself up against new plateaus and being able to go over those that we’ve been going pretty reliably for two and a half years and I don’t get bored. I haven’t got one. 

No, for the most part, we go every single day. Yeah. And I can see people getting bored, but with their business as well. So I think adding something that is challenging, like we added the podcast adding that that’s something that’s going to supplement what you’re already doing and get you to kind of push yourself a bit. Like those are the things that you need to do, whether it’s for you or even for your kids in order for you too. 

[00:08:40] Sean: On some of it’s just like thinking about what else it is you can do with your business, whether it’s to get more customers or just make more money or find more time to be with your family and not necessarily working, but you have to think about that kind of stuff and figure it out what it is that you can do.

And chances are, it’s going to be something you haven’t done before. Otherwise, you might be doing it already. So it’s going to be something that, that may take you out of that comfort zone. But you gotta, you gotta, like, you gotta jump in and just do it and, and you’ll overcome whatever it is that was holding you back.

And you’ll find that it’ll, it was exactly what you needed. You know. 

[00:09:19] Torie: I remember who said it, but I read a long time ago, this person that was talking about for everybody, that’s a business owner. Put yourself on some type of constraint and his was half-day Friday. And so you would always try to work. You would force yourself to work a half day Friday, even though you have stuff to do, because by giving yourself that constraint, you work faster, you work a little harder because you don’t have all day, you know, you still have to get the same amount of stuff done, but if you’re able to give yourself a constraint and challenge yourself, you would be amazed by the things that you can have actually accomplish.

[00:09:50] Sean: So you do half-day Friday. Now try to do as many things as you can in a short amount of time. And when you really don’t have the time to, to spread it out, I mean, you, you find a way to just get it all done. 

[00:10:04] Torie: Well, I think forcing ourselves to go to the gym on weekdays, even though we have kid events. And even though we have client work and our own work and all of these other things that need to be taken care of, we generally never put it on the back burner.

Like, I can only think of a handful of times that we haven’t gone for it because we were busy for some reason. And even though that challenge sometimes makes the days just a little bit harder, it’s still like, it is that time constraint. Like we could take all day and be on them about everything you do, or you can push yourself a little bit harder and see how much you could actually get them.

[00:10:35] Sean: But it is, I mean, it’s pretty cool. At the end of the day, we were like, oh shit, we did this and this and this and this. And, you know, ah, it’s time to go. 

[00:10:42] Torie: You know, that’s always kind of like my goal of like, when I lay down at the end of the night, I want to be like, damn, I got a lot done. Like woo. Today was awesome I did.

[00:10:53] Sean: I hate the feeling where it’s like, what the hell did we do all day? Because you kind of feel, it makes, it makes me feel crappy. Like I didn’t, I don’t feel like I did anything. And then. Thinking, right. And this idea, you start thinking of things that you could do. And so then you don’t even sleep well, if you fall asleep at all anytime soon, and it’s a vicious cycle, whereas if you just try to like really get some shit done it comes to lay your head down for sleep. And I mean, you fall right asleep, sleep like a baby and wake up, ready to do it. 

[00:11:24] Torie: Let’s try. I think a lot of these like learning new skills as a business owner, I think is a really great way of pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone aside of the time crunch, which I do think is a good thing for some people, because some people will take all day to get the littlest things done.

And so at that time crunch would really help them. But learning new skills I think is a great way to. Challenge yourself and push yourself. And it’s, it’s a measurable way that you can see that you’re progressing. Right. So whether it’s like learning social media or learning email marketing, we talked about gamifying these types of things by saying to yourself, What, what do I need to do?

Okay. I need to build better relationships with my customers. Well, then set yourself a goal of like, you want to get a hundred new email subscribers in the next 90 days or whatever it is, or you want to send one email a month and say, I’m going to do it or one email a week and say, I’m going to do it for 30 weeks. So that way you have a checklist countdown, right? Of like I told you, I was due on email 10. Whenever it was, well, this was email one, next is email two, and then you don’t want to break that chain. And if you do break it, it’s okay. Then it’s, you know, email three and then you can see how far you’ve progressed, but forcing yourself to do that kind of thing that, that sets yourself up already for something that’s measurable, I think is a really good way that you can do that with Riley. He wanted, you want to send video game pass for his X-Box and he wanted to know if I would spend pay for half of it, because a lot of things that I do with him, I’m like, if you want to work for the money, if you want to earn the money and spend, you know, pay for half of it, I will pay for the other half.

But then that’s my wheel right. So my wheel and deal, the first time was for the summer, he would do the sparring class and he did, it was a little intense for him. And so he wanted whatever. The next thing I think the next thing was the Oculus he wanted. And I did tell him if he spent, you know, if he saved up enough money for the Oculus, I would pay for the other half.

However I wheeled and dealed that I said, you will still go to karate three times a week. Even if it’s not the sparring class, you do have to go to a regular class. Then they said until the end of the day, That’s months and he knows that that’s the deal. And I already, one time had to say wrap that Oculus up.

We’ll send it back. But no, I like the Oculus I will say the X-Box not a fan of the Oculus. That thing’s pretty cool. I almost wish that we would’ve got it for him earlier because he wanted it last year for his birthday. You don’t get everything you want. He was bummed when he didn’t get it because he thought he was getting it. He got other cool stuff, but not what he wanted.

[00:14:08] Sean: Technically, you returned all this stuff. He’s a real asshole about it, which happens. I mean, it’s just kids. Like they got, they got to figure out how to deal with this kind of stuff. 

[00:14:19] Torie: I was like, you don’t want this stuff. I’ll return it all heats, never done that again, but he thought he was getting it for Christmas. Didn’t dad said no fucking way? You’re getting that Oculus after what you no. So I said, you want it, you gotta pay for it. That’s expensive. And he paid for half. We paid for half and I got my deal of pushing the kid and challenging him that until the end of the year, you will do this many karate lines.

Because if we left it up to his own, he’d be like, well, I’ll go here and I’ll go there. And, and so this was like a set timeframe, just like the doing 30 emails that he knows that he’s committed and can’t get out of it. And sometimes it’s hard to to commit to yourself. It’s hard to do those challenging things because it’s easy to start things. And then the pressure starts to get on and you’re like, Ooh, maybe this was the wrong thing. So if you set yourself something like that and say, I’m going to do it 30 times, or like, I always say do things 75 hard way where you do think 75 days in a row, then when that pressure is on, there’s nothing you can do. Like you already promised yourself whatever that timeframe is. 

[00:15:29] Sean: I think creating some sort of. A checklist or something that you can visually see with her. Cause even like, like checking the SEO on your website, like I’ll go into the museums website, automotive museum guide website that we created. And I’ll look at the Google analytics on it daily, literally every single day, probably multiple times a day.

Just to see what pages are coming up as the top ones and, and see, and that, that chart that shows you the ups and downs of how much. Pay super attention to that and if it dips down, my goal is the next day it goes back up and it can’t constantly keep going up day after day. And I totally understand that, but if it’s down one day, my goal is the next day it’s gotta be up. So what do I need to do? Do I need to share something on social media? Do I need to create a new blog post? Do I just reshare something I’ve already done? And literally just doing one of those things. Makes the chart go back up and I’m good to go and not check it the next day and see how it goes.

[00:16:30] Torie: I think a good thing with that too, is that you didn’t know that going into it. Like there wasn’t like a little rule book that said, okay, when your SEO goes down to this, this, this, and this, but you had to figure that stuff out. Right. Cause that’s that experience I’m talking like, you ha you need to have that experience.

[00:16:47] Sean: So, yeah. And eminent, it comes, it goes down to it. Like anything, this stuff that you have me doing in Kartra now. It’s super confusing to just think about all the things that need to be done. But once you get in there and you start just start doing it, literally just start going through the, the here’s step 1, 2, 3, and it walks you through it.

Like, I can, I can do it. But like, can you just, just blah, blah, blah. These are all the things I, you lost me, man. I don’t know. It, it becomes overwhelming. To actually see it and then walk through the process of it. It’s it keeps getting easier and easier. 

[00:17:22] Torie: Well, even like the blog posts that we were just doing, so we have a website called Automotive Museum Guide where we have a list of every single let, at least we’re trying automotive museum in the entire country, including Puerto Rico and Canada. 

[00:17:37] Sean: Puerto Rico close. So Canada. 

[00:17:39] Torie: Puerto Rico we hope you open back up. They’ll really like the old cars, the fifties cars. They’re no longer there in Puerto Rico. 

[00:17:47] Sean: Thinking Cuba. 

[00:17:48] Torie: Oh, that is Cuba. 

[00:17:49] Sean: Puerto Rico had an actual it was a nice museum and 2020 killed them. 

[00:17:53] Torie: Okay. Yeah or so we have this website and so. It’s hard because we started with nothing. And so we had no idea what we were doing. And so just gathering all of the data for all the museums. It was like a fee among itself. And so it kind of had to. Like everything shitty. And so we’re constantly kind of like making it a little bit better, making a little bit better, and that making it a little bit better and Sean sharing it when the traffic goes down has really had the traffic go up quite a bit.

And so it’s kind of a time now where like, okay, how can we make it more usable? How can we make it so that people stay on the website longer so that they want to come back to it. So we’ve been making some changes to things and I can go in there and I can set things up for Sean. And if I just tell Sean, like, do this, do this then he’s like, I don’t know what the fuck you’re saying, but if I write it down or if I write, you know, and make him a little list, then it’s easier for you to just do step one and then do step two.

And then by the fifth one, you’re probably cool. Yeah. 

[00:18:54] Sean: Yeah. It doesn’t even take five. Usually, it’s just, I need, I need to be able to actually do it and Some people can, can, they don’t have to do that, but I am totally one of the, like, I actually have to physically do it to be competent enough to keep doing it. And without ever doing, you know, whatever it is, I’ll never fully understand it. 

[00:19:16] Torie: Well, I hear that I’m a hands on guy. Right, right. And I think a lot of people are, I’m a hands-on person. I learn by doing, I do like a checklist and I do like to be able to see stuff. But I learned by doing too. And I think once you do a couple times, yeah. If you’re trying to get yourself out of your comfort zone to learn some of these new technology things or, you know, social media, sending emails, there’s lists for all of these things. Like if you go into Facebook to make an ad and you say, make an ad, it actually walks you through every single step and you know what?

You might screw one of them up. But it’s just like, you know, you figuring out what’s gonna work and what’s not, you always can just tweak things a little bit and try again, sending all these emails and things. It’s all. Again, it walks you through every single step. That’s why I love technology these days it’s really come a long way and it makes it really, really easy for non-technical people to at least get started.

You just got to push yourself out there and just try it one. 

[00:20:16] Sean: I mean, once you do that, the tweaking or adjusting, whatever it is that needs to happen afterward is so much easier than the initial attempt. 

[00:20:27] Torie: And I think if you’re not a type of person and that’s good at that kind of step, then you can use somebody like me, what I do for Sean and I set that process up because all you really need is a process to follow. So whether you’re setting the process up for yourself or you’re setting the process up for somebody else in your office, or you get somebody else to set the process up for you, that definitely is going to make that a lot better because then you’re just checking things off and going down the details are worked out.

That’s why, like, you know, I talked about, I don’t get bored at the gym anymore. We’ve gone so much because the details are worked out for me. That’s my no thinking time. I don’t have to think of what I need to do at all. I do classes like weightlifting classes and I work out with a trainer once a week and they tell me what to do. And it’s so nice that I know I’m getting a kick ass workout. I am tracking different things of like how heavy I lift and stuff, but I don’t have to think about it. I don’t have to go research these things. And that’s what setting up processes in your businesses like you’re able to challenge yourself, you’re able to see your progress.

You’re able to do all these things. Without having to keep thinking about the details and thinking about like, what am I going to do next? What am I going to do next? A lot of things, you just gotta be in it for enough time to get through the weird. 

[00:21:43] Sean: It’s more efficient that way as well. You know, you’re able to go in there for that amount of time that you’re in there and knock, knock it out of the park. Where, if you were trying to think, like you’re not going to work out as much or as hard, and it’s not going to be as efficient. 

[00:21:58] Torie: Riley needs to push himself. He needs to be a little bit more physically active, active Riley, go outside and be physically active like that wouldn’t work. No, but because there’s a structure because I’m putting him through that he doesn’t have to work out the details, but he’s still being pushed because I think when you try to do too many of those things at one time, like it ends up being a little bit too. 

[00:22:18] Sean: Well, and that’s why, you know, some of these businesses, they wind up getting coaches and, you know, having various people in their lives, just helping them, telling them what to do. It’s not that they don’t necessarily know how to do. Even sometimes, right. It’s just that they need to be told. Yeah. 

[00:22:35] Torie: Yes. And it’s nice to have somebody else keep you accountable or to set up that process or set up that structure for you. And then just the fact that somebody’s checking on you is enough to, for me, like I’m not going to miss it, but. 

[00:22:47] Sean: And that’s like back again in our military days, battle buddy, right? Yeah. I mean, all the, that person’s job was just to keep you accountable and make sure you’re good. Make sure you’re doing the right thing. And together, I mean, you guys did the two, you know, battle buddies as they progress and they get better and better. 

[00:23:06] Torie: Working out cause I have a lady that I work out with who is amazing. She’s a little bit older than me, but we’re both like, we have that same mentality when we go into the gym. And so she definitely she’s my workout battle buddy. And so it’s nice when she’s there because she keeps me going as hard as I need to, and always challenges me. So finding somebody that does that for you definitely can help you.

Give yourself challenge structured challenge so that you’re going to be able to progress and get further. Yeah. Your business further in life, better and fitness, like, and it works in so many things. You know, we have a resource page on Toriemathis.com that has a whole bunch of resources that might help you find some of these things that will help challenge you by learning a couple of new skills.

Putting some things in place in your business, putting some processes in place because it’s really those processes that are going to help you grow and progress in your life. Without stressing you out. Like it makes it better. It’s like a little bit of a, a little bit of a setup time, which I know people don’t want to do, but it’s really, it’s not that big.

Then you just keep following the same process. So check out Toriemathis.com/resources and lots of cool stuff on there that I think might help. 

[00:24:15] Sean: For sure. 

[00:24:15] Torie: And we have new shows every Tuesday and Thursday, where we talk about things like this, where you can market your business smarter, where you can learn social media, you can be more productive and we would love it if you would come and join us on another episode. And so we’ll see you on the next one. Thanks. 

[00:24:32] Sean: Catch you next time.


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Torie Mathis HeadshotI help entrepreneurs (like you) use digital marketing to get more clients + to make more money. And I make it easy! 

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