Today in the second episode, I have PJ Brady with me as my guests. We talk about being human, messing up leadership, how to create your own luck and what you want your children to picture when they hear the word integrity, be also discuss the secrets to making women’s ovaries rattle. You hear it. You absolutely can’t miss out on this one. Hello everyone. And welcome to The Curious today. I am having an interview with PK Brady. One of the most inspirational people I know in my life, he really thought me what values are, how to work with them. He’s doing this amazing project called brave, smart and kind, which he’s rolling out throughout the world, Belgium in the States for now, but everyone’s going to know about it. I’m sure. Thank you so much for being here, PJ.
PJ Brady (00:01:02):
Absolutely incredible. I’m super excited.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:01:06):
Nice! Could you tell us a bit about yourself?
PJ Brady (00:01:09):
Sure. So I demographically speaking, I am American. I am a white male, approximately 187 centimeters tall. I’ll leave my weight to myself cause it’s gone up over Covid-19 times, but no, I am American by birth Belgian by marriage. Uh, global by choice. I was raised in the US in Western New York. Mostly didn’t leave the US in Canada area until I was 21 years old. And then once I left, I’ve barely been back. So decided to, um, to go abroad, to study, to travel, to raise my family abroad and to really live a much more multicultural and global life. I started working for nonprofits, a couple of incredible nonprofits, uh, very much leadership based. The first was ‘Up with people’, which is a musical nonprofit, where you tour around the world and performing musicals. So I got to sing and dance for two and a half years doing that.
PJ Brady (00:02:11):
Uh, went back to university. We’ll get more into that later. I’m sure. But then, um, I studied international affairs and politics decided to go back to the US and work for a nonprofit there called the ”Entrepreneurs Organization”. That is a leadership organization for very successful entrepreneurs with chapters all around the world. And then I ended up living in Europe, moving back to Belgium, uh, married to my Belgian, uh, now wife and started working for the ‘Entrepreneurs Organization’ in Europe, Middle East, Pakistan, and Africa. So we’ve got to tour around all of those places, working a lot with leadership and learning so much about values-based leadership from that organization. That in turn, that’s what I do now.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:02:57):
Awesome. Yeah, that’s great. That’s a good intro. Um, why did you choose to come on the show?
PJ Brady (00:03:06):
I mean, imagine like a legend, like Bon Jovi says, Hey, come up on stage and sing with me. Would you say no? Of course, you wouldn’t say no. So when you call me up and said, Hey, I’m doing do this podcast. My answer was always going to be yes. Always going to be, yes. You bet.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:03:24):
Um, how would your parents describe what you do today?
PJ Brady (00:03:28):
You know what, that’s, that’s a really good question because for a long time, my parents were convinced that I was working for the CIA while I was traveling all of these places. I didn’t tell them very much what I did. And like, they just saw me in with pictures of very famous people.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:03:43):
You’re such a kind person. You would be like the perfect undercover spy.
PJ Brady (00:03:50):
I think I missed my calling. Um, essentially, they know pretty well what I do because we talk about it. So leadership training, um, and I do that from within companies, CEOs, and executives. I do that in schools with teachers and with students and with parents, because essentially from my view of leadership, it’s leadership, isn’t management, those are two different things. Leadership is the ability to inspire, to inform or influence other people. And we all do that on a regular basis, just depending on who our audience is. So they know pretty much what I do cause they’re actually my, my biggest fans. They’re out there talking about it and sharing posts and articles and references. And they’re really supportive.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:04:38):
Do you have any secrets for us that we could implement right away when it comes to leadership?
PJ Brady (00:04:47):
Yeah. And these aren’t necessarily mine, but I was always taught. I don’t even know, remember who taught me this, but they said instead of using, but using and so simple instead of saying, ‘but’ which negates everything you said before, it used the word and, and it changes the context of every relationship have every conversation that you have. Right. If I went up to my wife and I was like, ah, you know, I really liked that dress, but you know, maybe those shoes don’t go with it. She’d be like, Hey, what? You don’t think I look good? I’m like, wait, no, no, no dress. And I think maybe you should change those shoes. Yeah. I’m using a very superficial example, but
Isabelle Dumortier (00:05:27):
Yeah, but no, but it makes it like comprehensible right.
PJ Brady (00:05:29):
Yeah. I will. There’s more values-based stuff. Do that goes into it. Like if you look at a lot of people, they don’t know their values, right. They just don’t know. They’ve just never gone through the exercise or considered what their values are. And one of the secrets that I go in with is I can tell anybody’s values based on what their failures have been in life. Like I asked him if I were going to go in and talk about your values, we did this together. Like if you talk about your values, I ask a bunch of questions. Um, I ask about your parents, I ask about your successes. I ask about, um, things that you take pride in, what makes you angry, leaders that you, you admire? Um, and it’s not that that’s all a front that all tells a very good story, but the biggest one is I ask, what are your biggest failures? And once we understand what your failures are, it draws a direct line to what your values are. So that’s one of the secrets.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:06:22):
Yeah. That’s interesting. What I really loved about the exercise we did together was as well, when you asked me, what do you really like? What gives you a lot of energy when you work together with people and what completely drains your energy and is a super energy vampire, when you work with people and most of the time, it’s like the exact opposite of those energy vampires that turn out to be a big part of your values too. And it was so easy.
PJ Brady (00:06:51):
And you’re like, Oh, Oh, those moments, I love that. I love working with individuals because you always get those aha moments.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:07:01):
Yeah. Yeah. It’s really interesting. Um, is there anything that happened with your clients and with the programs you do that has done something for, uh, for them that you didn’t expect?
PJ Brady (00:07:14):
Well, to tell you the truth, a lot of what I’ve done just happened on accident, which is, we’ll talk more about the purpose stuff later is more of like the unintended consequences. But, um, when I was getting my values for my family together, right, when I was thinking about this, and you had mentioned before being brave, smart, and kind, this was something that started with, it was just my daughters. I’ve got three little girls now ages 10, eight, and almost four. And I just wanted them to grow up to be confident women. I wasn’t even thinking about stuff that I was doing in leadership. I just wanted to raise confident, young ladies. And so something that I’ve heard from the women in my life and women in society is that they just don’t feel beautiful. Right? There’s always this image surrounding what beautiful means.
PJ Brady (00:08:04):
And, and everyone’s always striving to get it and never feels it. And so I said, I want my girls to feel beautiful. So what I did because they speak Flemish in school and French with my wife is I, terrifyingly, get to teach them the English language, right. So I get to make up whatever I want to, what I told them from a very young age was that beautiful means to be brave smart and kind just those three things pretty is something else pretty fades pretty as temporary prettiest for things beautiful is who you are, right. And what you get to control. And so when I started that, I would go in and I was doing my leadership, my values-based leadership sessions. And I would go in and I’d maybe have an hour and a half, two hours of a workshop. And I’d go maybe with a five-minute introduction of, this is what I teach my girls about being beautiful; Brave, Smart, Kind.
PJ Brady (00:08:58):
This is how values work. This is how decision making works from those values. And now I want you to find your own values, and I want you to figure out your corporate values, whatever the training was on. And then what would happen was that even months or years after someone would do this training, I would see them on the street or somewhere else around town. And they would say, ah, PJ, I loved that session on Brave, Smart & Kind. I’ve instituted it in my home. And I said, but that training wasn’t on brave smart and kind, that was just an introduction to values and how you’re supposed to live from them. And the more and more that I spoke about it, the more people listen to it. So I was only doing my values-based leadership stuff. I had no intention of doing anything brave, smart, and kind to training.
PJ Brady (00:09:41):
And so since it was gaining some popularity, I had to decide to do a Facebook live session about it lasted maybe I don’t know, 10 minutes. And then it’s out on Facebook for anybody. And then about, uh, three or four months later, I got a message from a very old friend from high school who I hadn’t seen in 20 plus years. I said, Hey, PJ, it’s been a long time, but I’m instituting Brave, Smart & Kind in my classroom. It’s the coolest thing. Um, we’re loving it. The kids are loving it. It’s changed how we communicated. And I, I thought, Oh wow, what a coincidence. We’re both doing Brave, Smart & Kind. That’s incredible. How long have you been doing it? And she’s like, just since I saw your video, I was like, Oh, Oh shit, okay. Now, now we’ve got something. And so, um, she took it and ran with it in her school and I’m sorry in her classroom.
PJ Brady (00:10:38):
But then other teachers started picking it up and putting it in their classrooms. And then the principal said, Hey, we’d love to have this as a whole theme for our school. And we’d love to have you involved. Can you guide us? Can you mentor us? Can you do videos for the kids? And so something, I just didn’t, I didn’t expect any of this to happen. Let alone, like one thing that happened for a client, but she was probably the first person. Her name is Michelle Sabol, Ms. Sabol. And, um, she’s a teacher at Sol Feinstone Elementary and she just took it and started running with it. And like, she’s motivated me to continue with it. I mean, there’s a ton of projects that I have picked up and dropped along the way, just seeing what sticks, but this one’s become much more meaningful in the world and it just popped up.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:11:27):
Yeah. It is amazing. Um, yeah, two things I want to pick up on is the, uh, the beautiful part, um, for women, what I just want to share for women listening, what made a huge difference for me is looking in the mirror every day and telling myself I’m beautiful. And it’s crazy because I mean, in my life, um, I used to have a relationship which was quite toxic. He called me ugly every day. So even though I realize I’m not ugly now, I really believed that it was true. I felt it. And I read a lot about it and having a negative, like a negative affirmation. You need like 60 times on top a positive one before you switch back. So I told myself every day in the mirror, you’re beautiful. You’re a strong, independent woman. And, uh, in the beginning, I was looking in the mirror as like, yeah, right.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:12:25):
Like, sure. Uh, but then after 30 days of consistently doing that, um, at one point I walked, I walked, uh, by, um, a window of a shop and I saw my reflection and where I used to think, ah, Isabelle, those pants are too tight or what are you wearing again? Like, you know, I just give it or how do you look, how’s your hair giving myself, um, negative feedback. It was the first I ever in my life. And I still remember the moment that I walked past that window noise. See my reflection. I’m like, dang girl, you’re looking good.
PJ Brady (00:12:59):
Isabelle Dumortier (00:13:02):
That changed so much, if you have that feeling,
PJ Brady (00:13:05):
Feeling good, looking good,
Isabelle Dumortier (00:13:07):
Telling yourself that you’re beautiful is like reprogramming your brain. And it really, for me, it really helps. Um, I just want to share that if you’re not feeling super beautiful, then that’s definitely a go-to exercise. Um, and the Brave, Smart & Kind, which is crazy. You told me, I, you told me about it. Um, a few years ago, I think, uh, I started doing it with Maxi as well, with my own son. And he came back a few days ago from school and he hit a kid and I was like, was that the Brave, Smart & Kind thing to do? And he looked at me, he’s like, no, um, probably not.
PJ Brady (00:13:46):
Isabelle Dumortier (00:13:47):
So, what are you going to do next time? And then, so it’s such a, it’s such an easy way of explaining kids, what Brave, Smart and Kind is. Um, and what values are and how you can work with them. I really believe that it could change our school system.
PJ Brady (00:14:03):
Well, I hope so. And here’s the thing is we have a school system, the kids grew up in an ecosystem, right. And that’s the thing about values is that when I talk about being Brave, Smart & Kind, my, a lot of people have come up and they’re like, well, don’t you want your daughters to be unique? And I’m like, of course I, of course I do. And they’re like, but if you give them the same values, are they going to be unique? And I was like, well, slow down for a second. Anyone who thinks that you get all of your values from your parents, you’re totally kidding yourself, like sometimes you have parents who teach you the negative value, the anti-value of what you want to become. Do you know what I mean? So that shapes it, you get it from your friend’s parents, you get it from your teachers, you get it at a very young age from all of the things that are going on around you.
PJ Brady (00:14:50):
Current events. I mean, how many people are, are going to be shaped from #blacklivesmatter or from anything that’s going on right now in society. Right. And so when, when we talk about the school systems, yes. And even more importantly, what it gives us, gives the schools the same language as the parents, if everybody’s using it. So the kid is getting this reinforcement all the time on these very specific values. And the other thing about being Brave, Smart & Kind is they’re general for a reason. And what I, the remarkableness of this project is that when I started doing with my girls, I was also doing the values-based leadership stuff. And people come up with all sorts of values on their own. Right? What are your values?
Isabelle Dumortier (00:15:35):
Integrity, adventure, wise, um, kind, and safe.
PJ Brady (00:15:45):
Yeah. Yeah. So Kind is in there, but the other ones aren’t necessarily. And when people go do their values, people have things like grit, people do have things like caring for others, being intentional, being daring, being whatever it is, faith, a lot of people have different values and they feel like those values are unique and they are, everyone’s a beautiful little butterfly. Right. And they are unique. And what I started to notice when I was going into the Brave, Smart & Kind stuff and doing the leadership training at the same time was that I, I was looking at the values and I’ve got it. I’ve got a sheet of like 600 different words of values that people have chosen. Right. And I started going through that one day after doing a brave, smart kind video. And I was like, well, this value is, you know, wise, well, that’s being smart, but just how you define it.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:16:37):
Yeah. And adventurous for me is being brave.
PJ Brady (00:16:39):
Right. I was able to put a B or an S or a K next to every single one of those values. And I feel like what I’ve stumbled across is Brave, Smart & Kind are just the most fundamental values that you teach kids to understand values. And then as they get older, those values shift, like ‘kind’ for one of my daughters, Alexandra, who’s 10, right now she is one of the most empathetic girls that you’ll ever meet. She understands what other people are feeling. Now, what she chooses to do with that is very different, but she gets it. She can put herself into someone else’s shoes like that. And I’m amazed by it. I’m pretty sure one of her values as she gets older is, is going to be empathy now. Uh, Emiline who’s eight years old. Can she put herself in other people’s shoes? Sure. She does.
PJ Brady (00:17:28):
Like, she doesn’t do that all the time, but in her kindness, in her kindness, what she does is she sticks up for people. She shows up, she is there, to listen, to give like, she’s, that’s hers. That’s what she, that’s how she shows kindness. So those are going to evolve just like yours and mine have evolved. I don’t have brave, smarter kind does any of my values.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:17:50):
What are yours?
PJ Brady (00:17:51):
So the first one is the care for others. Right. That’s my kind value. Um, the second one is to be intentional. I have to do everything with a purpose. And that’s my smart, like when you get into how I critically think, I try to think of the end game so that I can make the right choices. And so I guess that’s my kind and that’s my smart one. Am I brave is a little unorthodox, but my brave one is luck.
PJ Brady (00:18:17):
So how do I define brave is how do you overcome challenges? How do you overcome things? And a lot of times I am a pretty go with the flow type of guy. All right, let’s see how this one’s going to turn out. But at a young age, my grandmother told me, she said, luck is when preparation meets opportunity. That’s what luck is. Right. So what I do is I show up, I just show up all the time or as often as I can. Right. And just by showing up by being present by being in that moment, can good things happen to you. So I overcome and to tell you the truth, that some of my failures, we can get into negative values too. But like the thing is, if you, if you plan, if you, if you’re intentional, what you want to do and you prepare for things, that’s where my other values and you show up, then you get lucky more often someone who’s just sitting at home and doesn’t show up, you have to show up for those circumstances or else you can’t have anything happen to you.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:19:15):
No, exactly. Right. Yeah. It’s um, it’s interesting for me, since I’ve met you, my life has literally changed. I think we met five years ago, approximately four or five years ago. And it was only a few weeks ago that I really realized, Oh my God, I am not the person I used to be anymore. I just changed completely. And at the basis of that was having a value, um, a value workshop with you and really going to the core of who are you, what do you want to base your decisions on? The thing is with having a value-driven life, it sounds like, um, flowers and birds, but it’s not always easy to go there. If I look in the past five years right now, I feel comfortable enough to really always make decisions based on my values, because I know that the end game in the long term, it’s going to make me the happiest and the people surrounding me as well. Um, and, and it’s the thing of putting on your own oxygen mask before you put on anyone else’s that’s for me is what value-driven life is because you, it really, um, yeah. It makes you happy with who you are and, and gives you a lot of self-love, but getting there is not always
PJ Brady (00:20:43):
No living on accident, easy. Yeah. Waking up without a plan, easy-going through your life without having this knowledge much easier. Living on purpose is much harder. I was, I was thinking of this the other day. I don’t remember why, but I was thinking about this the other day. And someone asked me to kind of describe it. And I said, Oh, they’re, they’re talking to me as like, Oh, well, PJ, if you live by these values, you know, then your life must just be really great. Everything must be going great. Like, everything’s fine. Right. And I was like, alright, slow down for a second. Like, knowing your values is one thing, but I equal to an Olympic hurdler right now, right now, if I went to go jump hurdles, right. And if I’m running and I’m jumping over those hurdles on a track meet, if I run into one of those hurdles, I might tumble a little bit, maybe skin my knee. I’m not running very fast. I’m not that fast of a runner. Not that great of a jumper. I’m going to go pretty slow over those hurdles.
Speaker 4 (00:21:46):
Go around it, go the ladder, the ladder. Yeah, that would be a good idea for me.
PJ Brady (00:21:51):
But here’s the thing. If you see an Olympic hurdler and they are busting their ass to get over that hurdle and they hit a hurdle with their toe, that’s like one of the biggest catastrophes that you’ll see. It’s like limbs going out over feet. Right. They’re running into all the hurdles that are after it, like broken bones. When you’re doing something to this extreme and you’re going so hard at it. When you mess up, when you feel like you mess up, when you’re feeling like you’re failing, when you’re doing that hurts, it sucks. And do you want to be the person who’s, who’s like really trying hard and being successful in life? Oh yeah. Then go faster, try harder. And if you live with that intentionality, when you fall, it will hurt when you don’t, you feel incredible, but you know what? I’m not going to feel incredible. If I’m walking in, I’m stepping over that hurdle. I want to try harder. I want to do that more. So it’s not easy. It’s hard. You fall along the way. I fall many times along the way. And even with my daughters, like one of the biggest topics that we’ve had to cover is failure. How do you fail? How do you get back up? What do you realize about failure? What are you doing this? Because I’ve outlined brave, smart and kind, and how important that is to me, they’ve taken that on as how important it is to them. So as soon as they feel like they haven’t done something kind, as soon as they feel like they haven’t made a smart choice, as soon as they feel like they’ve given into fear, they feel terrible about it. And so what I need to go up and say, all right, you feel bad.
PJ Brady (00:23:31):
Let’s talk this one out. Why do you feel bad? And because we’ve put the language about around being Brave, Smart & Kind, I have context with my kids. They get to share emotions with me that otherwise, I don’t remember very specifically talking to my parents about this. My mother has been a huge female influence in my life. We talked about in different ways, but like, it’s so easy for me and my girls to have more mature growing conversations than it would be if I didn’t have this, you know what I mean? So for them to have the ability to talk through failure at a young age, shit, we, adults are terrible at this. We are terrible at it, realizing how we failed, what we needed. Like we find ourselves in these cycles in life that are just, um, destructive. And because we’re not able to get to the soul of a problem, I’m starting to teach them how to do that. So that hopefully they’re able to make more brave, smart kind decisions in their life. And we’ll see, it’s an experiment. Like my daughters maybe like 30 years from now. They’re like, thanks a lot, dad.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:24:41):
Well, for me, you are an example. You were, uh, you were talking about your mother. What has she had as an impact in shaping who you are today?
PJ Brady (00:24:50):
Uh, so my mom’s a wonderful, amazing woman. So she’s like five foot, two I’m, six-foot, sorry. In centimeters. I don’t even know what that is in centimeters. She’s a short little woman and short of stature, but huge in personality. Um, like my mom, uh, my parents got divorced when I was seven years old. And so my father lives in California. I lived with my mom in Florida and New York. We moved around. But, um, she was always that person who was just there and ready to have those conversations, ready to face things, ready to cry, right. Ready to laugh, whatever it was. She just had this open heart and an abundance of love. And by no means was perfect. Right. But that didn’t stop her from always doing the right thing. Um, she worked with nonprofits, she worked on stage. She did this thing called course of hands where, um, she would go into malls and shows or schools and do these shows for deaf kids.
PJ Brady (00:25:52):
And it was all singing songs through sign language, through like interpretive dance, if you will. And I would go because she was a single mom, I’d have to go to the rehearsals. So I went there, I met her friends. I met all these other incredible women who were just stepping up in the world. She volunteered to be the girl scout leader. She, she was always busting her butt to make the best happiest life for me and my sister. And so I remember at a young age, I don’t remember what the argument was about, but I yelled at her. I was mad. I was probably 13, 14 years old, yelled at her. And she just sat there on the stairs, like crumped in a ball and just cry. And he was like, I don’t understand why you’re yelling at me though. And I was like, like, that was one of those moments.
PJ Brady (00:26:42):
I was like, ah, Oh my God. Like looking at myself in the mirror, it’s like, what kind of person do you want to be like, come on. You don’t make people feel bad. I know it’s a silly thing, but for a 13 or 14 year old. And from that moment on my mom and I never got in a fight, debates, um, we would have things that we disagreed on. There was things that would hurt. Right. But we’d always be able to talk it out. Always be able to talk it out from that second. So I don’t know that I’ve ever just sat there and written it down to her. And I have talked about like, she knows, but like that, like she’s been that guiding light. And she gave me a book. When I first became a father, she gave me a small little book that had quotes, sayings things. And it said, when your children picture the word, integrity, do everything you can to make sure they’re picturing you. Right. And so I read that and I like, my wife was pregnant at the time and I obviously was thinking about fatherhood, but that one was like, Oh my, I need it. I need to step up my game a little bit here.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:27:43):
Yeah. When I hear that, I’m like, wow. Yeah. Imagine oned your kid. Yeah,
PJ Brady (00:27:47):
No, when I fail, I need to go and face my kids and say, Hey, I failed. Hey, I messed that one up. I’m sorry. I talked to you like that. I’m sorry. I made that choice. I’m sorry, whatever that action was, if I was the one at fault and there’s go, so I apologize. I’m a pretty quick apologizer. Or like, I am able to, I don’t hold that inside of me for very long. And so what they see is like, Oh, it’s okay to apologize. It’s okay to be wrong. It’s not a big deal. And now they’ve, they’re the same way. Like, they’ll apologize for something pretty fast when they realize that they’ve messed it up. So, I mean, I’ll fail time and time again at the integrity part. But if you keep trying, doesn’t that count?
Isabelle Dumortier (00:28:25):
Definitely. Definitely. I mean, we’re all human. We have our light and our dark side. Right. So, I still think that that’s going to be, not that dark. Um, what is it, what is it like to be you?
PJ Brady (00:28:45):
I think that would even be a better question for like, my wife’s, was like, what’s it like to be married to him? You know? Cause there’s the kids in the beds. But um, I like what it feels like to me, me is fortunate and you know what that’s, I don’t think that that’s a cop out answer. I it’s not just that I’m grateful for things. I am grateful for things, but I was born into a fortunate life. Right. I’ve toured around in Nigeria and then toured around in Pakistan. And you look at people on the streets who have next to nothing. Possession wise, born a white man. How much easier is it?
Isabelle Dumortier (00:29:27):
Definitely. Yeah. These days, it gets in your face.
PJ Brady (00:29:31):
And I’m not too worried about it, but like just fortunate. I was born into loving parents. Right. Even though they separated, they’re both full of love. They’ve got jobs. I’ve got kids who are wonderful, like loving wife. Like I’ve, I’m just fortunate. And so anytime when I look at it and I start to complain about something, rain in Belgium, I mean, it’s been a fantastic spring, but like, something like that, like when I started to get down and it’s like, hold on, change your perception. So to be me, I just feel lucky. A lot.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:30:09):
PJ Brady (00:30:11):
You know? It is. And it’s also like being lucky. Here’s the thing that people don’t put luck with is it also comes with a responsibility that comes with a, uh, an ability to serve others. It comes with a sharing of that luck to people that are around you. So I think when I got into teaching that was threw up with people, like they really helped shape who I was when I would go into schools and kind of show that you’ve got a lesson for other people to learn from that part of it. It just stuck in my brain. It’s like, no, if you’ve got something to share, share it. And that goes, I will admit to this, I am a terrible business person, like really bad. You’re like, let’s cut this part. I don’t charge people money. I’m just joking. It’s I just, if someone needs to learn something, it’s like, well, let’s just make sure you’re able to learn, like, what’s how are we going to be able to do this?
PJ Brady (00:31:08):
What is the information I can get? What are the conversations that we’re going to have? What is whatever I’m able to do from a giving perspective? Because I feel so fortunate that everything I’ve got and like, I used to get raises at my old job and I would feel guilty over them. Yeah. Like I don’t have a good relationship with money. I don’t feel, but like, I, uh, I would feel guilty because it’s not that I didn’t deserve it for my work, but a lot of other people deserve it too. Right. Are they getting that recognition? So I dunno. There’s goods and bads that come with luck , being fortunate, but I couldn’t come up with a better
Isabelle Dumortier (00:31:44):
Sounds pretty good to me. What does, what does being human mean to you?
PJ Brady (00:31:50):
Um, flawed, not like mildly flawed, like extremely flawed, like so much. So, uh, human, as opposed to any other animal, we really mess some things up once in a while. Right. And so, but also the ability just a little bit, it’s just things like a planet. Don’t worry about that. Big of a deal. (sarcastic)
Isabelle Dumortier (00:32:13):
PJ Brady (00:32:15):
But then also with the ability to have hope, the ability to create change, you know, so being human for me, I mean, I try to get this into the minds of the girls, just to say, you have the ability to do anything you want to do. Right. So the Henry Ford quote, whether you say you can do something or can’t do something you’re right. Yeah. That’s us. Right. Do you want to choose to do something good? Choose it. You want to say you can’t do something you’re right. You won’t be able to do it. It’s a mindset that we’ve got that other beings animals don’t necessarily have.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:32:53):
And how does that work? How does religion work for you or spirituality?
PJ Brady (00:32:59):
I have a weird relationship with religion, like organized religion. I am not a fan of, just in terms of, if you just go into the history of religion, you see how jacked up it’s been historically so that some people focus their lives from a standpoint of here’s what organized religion has told me. Therefore, I will do it.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:33:22):
Which are stories that somebody else wrote,
PJ Brady (00:33:26):
The stories that they wrote. And they sat in the church for how many hundreds of years there were the church. Like no one else saw them and only then were they available and translated. And even like, I mean, I live in a multicultural home. We lose translation every five minutes in a word that’s supposed to mean something else we’re talking about; The Bible know a pretty big book that could have been changed in translation, but that’s not even the point, the organized religion stuff. I grew up in a Methodist home. It was Methodist. I it’s a form of Protestant it’s but it’s very, it’s a much more open type of church. And so actually I went to go do my confirmation. I was 16 at old at the time. And, uh, would go to the classes, do it with the pastor. And I will always admire him for this.
PJ Brady (00:34:18):
He said, you don’t necessarily know who you are without knowing who you aren’t. So what he did was he took us around to a Greek Orthodox church. He took us to a Jewish temple. He took us to a Catholic church. We didn’t have any mosques in our city, but like we went and saw all the other different religions. And that was the first time I was like, but how do we know that we’re right. That was the first time I really questioned, like how do we know that their truth isn’t real? And the answer was, we don’t, that’s what faith is. And I was like, Oh no, that’s not a good enough answer for me. There’s so many things. So then I started looking at the history of it. And then I started looking at religion. But on the other hand, spirituality and having an idea that you are not the center of the universe, there is something bigger than you.
PJ Brady (00:35:05):
There’s something bigger than life. There’s something bigger than this. That I’m a big fan of like, I feel like people who have that spirituality and some find it through the church and some don’t, I don’t care where you find it. You know? Um, if you’re able to look at something bigger than you and then educate yourself on it and live from it. Great. If the world was more spiritual in terms of the core message at every religion is to be kind to others. I don’t care what you say. I don’t care what anybody thinks. The core message
Isabelle Dumortier (00:35:39):
Everyone on this planet is equal.
PJ Brady (00:35:40):
Is be kind to people, right? And every, all the religious figures in history, Mohammed, Jesus, whatever you want to look at, Buddha kind kind characters that helped other people. If you live from that.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:35:54):
But that’s for me, when you say Buddhism, that’s where it splits for me. Religion tells you, um, religion tells you to look at one person whilst Buddhism is not a religion it’s teachings. Right. So it’s that, that’s only that already for me makes a huge, yeah. Huge, huge difference.
PJ Brady (00:36:16):
Yeah. Yeah. And agreed. And yeah, like I have not studied Buddhism, but if you, if you look at it, I’ve got one friend who has, and she’s told me a lot about it. And it’s still about your surroundings about other things that are bigger than you about being kind about
Isabelle Dumortier (00:36:32):
Living a value driven life. I think what you do and what you help people with is also a path to becoming more spiritual.
PJ Brady (00:36:40):
Are you telling me I am a Buddhist?
Isabelle Dumortier (00:36:42):
Chances are… You have the right hair for it. :).
Isabelle Dumortier (00:36:42):
So you, you go to schools a lot. How do you feel about the current school system?
PJ Brady (00:36:56):
Which system are we talking about? America. Belgium. All the above. Yeah. For real well, here’s the thing is some of the most wonderful people that I know are teachers and I’ve just been lucky to grow up in those places, up with people produced a lot of teachers. Right. Um,
Isabelle Dumortier (00:37:16):
So by default, I think it’s one of the most beautiful professions as well. We wouldn’t be sitting here if we didn’t have any teachers.
PJ Brady (00:37:26):
And everyone points back to those really influential ones in their world. So the system though, and that’s what the teachers right now, I know it’s in the US I know it’s in Europe too, is to say, Hey, we need, if you want us to do a job, well, we need more. And it’s not, you’re not asking for more money. They’re asking for smaller classrooms, they’re asking for more science behind their teaching. They’re asking for more investment in their craft, as opposed to what we see. It is like, Oh, we’ll just take care of our kids. Just go and do that. So the systems are just antiquated. You know what I mean? Like teaching from the same books, teaching the same lessons, teaching the same ways when we’ve progressed so much, but here’s the thing is, we’ve evolved as humans and in society. Right. Very fair statement.
PJ Brady (00:38:18):
And you find those unique times in history where there’s just a jump in anything technology, industrial revolution right now, information. And so if you look back into the industrial revolution that happened over a couple hundred years, like when you really look at where it started to where it ended a couple of hundred years and somewhere, even in the middle, closer to the end of the industrial revolution, we still had kids working in factories, getting their fingers ripped off by machinery. And we were cool with it. That was just the way it was. There was rats being grinded up in meat right there.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:38:52):
I know. Thank you for adding that. It used to be, I’m sure it’s not, I’m sure
PJ Brady (00:38:57):
It’s not like that anymore, but you know what I mean? Like there was still so many terrible things going on from the industrial revolution and what was the incredible stuff that it created? What was the advancements in technology that created to give us the lives now that we lead. Right now, what we have been going through in our lifetime, it has been the information shift. It’s been everything that is in the internet, all the technology, all the access to information, data, how we, but the problem is we are so early on into this process, we still have the metaphorical problems of kids who are getting their hands ripped off in machines, because we haven’t figured out how to maximize this to be smart, to be values driven, to be right, to be morally correct and things. So a lot of the issues that we’re facing right now is cause our minds haven’t been able to evolve as fast as the processes that society needs to function. And so I have the faith that it’s going to get much bigger, but it needs, we just need to catch up to that. So I was in a school in South Africa and I wish I remember the name of the school right now, but it was an incredible school. And they did science based research in how their kids learned. So from a certain age, they separated girls and boys in classrooms at a very young age. They separated boys and girls just because the human brain of a girl human brain of a boy…
Isabelle Dumortier (00:40:32):
PJ Brady (00:40:32):
But at a young age, it just, it develops differently at different speeds, maturity, um, critical thinking skills. And it’s not, one’s better than the other. They’re just different. So what they do is they separate girls and boys at a certain age because their brains develop differently. And then they bring them back together. I think it’s around the age of 12 or 13 and then have the joint classrooms. And then because at that point, they’re on the much more even level, then their relationships develop more evenly. So one of the things they do at the school is, um, being in South Africa, they can do this is they don’t wear shoes in school because of all the sensory receptors that they have on their feet and how, when you’re grounded to the planet, you can learn better. Your mind is open more. They don’t wear shoes in their school.
PJ Brady (00:41:26):
They do a lot of learning through singing because that’s how the mind can capture information. Like they just looked at it from a different perspective. They got the data to back it up and then they changed their educational program around it because they’re open to do so. Td that is amazing. So, I mean, I think what we need to do is obviously there’s the evolution we’ll catch up. We’ll get there. You know, there’s different people who are looking at things, whether it’s Montessori schools or charter schools, like whatever it is, they’re trying different things. But give it a couple more, a couple hundred years. Maybe. I know it doesn’t get a lot of faith that we’ll, we’ll catch up and then we’ll invent something new. Jack it all up again. But yeah. So I think, look, there’s a lot of room for growth in the school systems and there’s a lot of caring people who are trying to get it right.
PJ Brady (00:42:18):
But until we have a critical mass of that, then it’s going to stay exactly the way that it is. But that’s, and that’s where we start to do things like Brave, smart & kind. I was speaking to some, to a principal in the US at one of the schools. And they said with all the different methods that they have of teaching kids right now, um, they have like the positive reinforcement method. And they’ve got this other one where it’s not necessarily positive reinforcement, but they’re teaching kids how to communicate whatever it is. They said it all before, you’re able to get anything into a school. It has to be scientifically based. You have to have the data to back it up. I don’t disagree with that. Fantastic. Go get the data and try to, to come up with better ways to teach. And I said, here’s the beauty of Brave, Smart & Kind.
PJ Brady (00:43:02):
It’s just values. Like you can Institute Brave, Smart & Kind of into a positive reinforcement system. You can do Brave, Smart & Kind in any sort of system that you’ve got within your school. This is just a way for everyone to get on the same page and speak to kids in the same way to back up what they’re doing, right. To reinforce whatever they’re doing. And so from that perspective, it doesn’t, this, we don’t necessarily need the data to say, be good to people. And that’s the thing is what matters is. All right. Well, how do you define kindness? How do you define being smart? How do you define bravery? And then once you can make up your own definitions, what kind mean to me in my family? It doesn’t have to be what kind means to you and your family. That’s perfectly fine. That’s okay. Even within schools, it doesn’t have to be the same.
PJ Brady (00:43:58):
What needs to be the same is how you have these conversations within the ecosystem. So in, if the parents understand that, Hey, this is what being kind in our school means. It means respecting yourself. And it means respecting others. Here’s how we do that. Here’s what being smart as it is about the books and how we’re learning. But it’s also how we critically think it’s. So what we’re going to do is we’re going to give a, we’re going to look at our education right now, like a puzzle pieces that we want people to figure out how these things work. So let’s talk about that. What it means to be brave in our school is to, uh, whatever it is, no bullying, right? Don’t be afraid of what you don’t know yet. Just go out and learn it. Whatever that bravery is defined as if you come together as a group and say, this is what we’re going to do, then those kids are going to have the same message reinforced to them all the way through and the how’s, It changes. Great. It should change. We’re not trying to create robots here. We’re just trying to teach kids. This is how you make decisions. This is how you succeed. This is how you fail. Let’s figure it out.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:45:00):
Yeah. How would you, uh, apart from schools, what will your best advice be for someone that starts like, with that says, I want to live a value driven life. Like what’s your best advice to start?
PJ Brady (00:45:13):
The first is to get a shift in the mindset because I appreciate when people say, I want to live a value driven life, sincerely I do. But here’s the thing. Everybody has values. Everybody has values. Just like you have DNA, just like you breathe oxygen. Everybody has values inside of them. They just don’t necessarily know what they are. I will dare to say this. Everybody lives a value driven life. It’s just as that driving you to success, or is it driving you off a cliff? Right? So here’s the thing is when I talk about values and I, I, when I do exercises, I try to get someone to come up with their three top values they can have for whatever they can, but whatever it is, I try to get them to have three, because three’s easy to remember. And when you’re at a fork in the road and you need to make a decision on something, remembering three values is easier than remembering five, six, 10 values companies that have 10 values. Nobody knows him. No, I promise you. Nobody knows those values. And nobody’s living by those values. You just using it as a marketing tool. By when you as an individual,
PJ Brady (00:46:22):
We have a hundred values inside of you. Great. Let’s figure out what your top three are and try to live towards those. The thing is with living a values driven life, your values are also where you fail. And so a very popular value that people have in their life is honesty, right? A lot of people have honesty. I’ll be at a conference and I’ll, we’ll come up with the values and I’ll say, all right, raise your hand. If you have honesty and a bunch of people raised their hand, and I say, okay, now keep your hands up. Tell me, have you ever been accused of being too direct or brewed and all the hands stay up. Alright, put them down. Uh, who’s determined, right? Who’s determined. Raise up their hands. Who’s ever been accused of being stubborn. All the hands stay up there. Living values based lives. I don’t care if you’re like the most evil person on the planet. You’re doing that from a place of values, your values of just taking you to destructive decisions. Right?
Isabelle Dumortier (00:47:23):
So if we look at a guy like Trump, what would his values be?
PJ Brady (00:47:32):
Yeah, that’s fine. It was someone like Trump, like ambition, ambition. People have ambition as a value and they see it as very positive value. Right? Ambition. I am driven to go here. I am trying to be bigger, whatever it is, Trump is ambitious. Can anybody say that he’s not? Nope. What is he willing to do to get that ambition? What is he willing to do to do that? And that’s not just Trump, but so like in the extremism land of things, if you take that value to an extreme, and that’s what, that’s how we measure something. And I told you before we look at your greatest failures and how that, well, I promise you your failures, your biggest failures came because you took a value and you went too far. So when I talked to this with the girls, talk about what happens. If you’re too brave, you become reckless. Someone who’s too brave, becomes reckless with their life. They become reckless with their choices. They become reckless with money. They become reckless with other people’s hearts. That’s a big thing. What happens if you’re too smart, right? If you’re too smart, if you’re too booksmart, you can become very egotistical. I know it, all those types of people and agreements with ‘let’s agree to disagree’ often I’ve done it before.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:48:51):
That’s so accurate though.
PJ Brady (00:48:53):
And if, if intention, if that’s for me, that’s my smart goal is to be intentional with something. If you’re too intentional with something, people can very easily say that you’re manipulating them. Yeah. Because you’ve got your goal in mind and you’re willing to do whatever you’re going to do to get them to that place. Now you’re manipulating things. And then with the last one, can you be too kind? Yeah. People were to kind of get walked over,
Isabelle Dumortier (00:49:19):
Disease to Please. No boundaries.
PJ Brady (00:49:21):
Yes. That’s exactly it. So if you take any value and you take it to an extreme, it becomes a negative value. So in my world, everybody’s living a value driven life. Where do you want it to drive you? Yeah, that’s it. So with my stuff, what I’m doing with the girls is to understand it values. It’s not whether you have values or don’t have values, or if you choose your value to live by your values or don’t choose to live by your values. You’re living by them. Yeah. What I want to come up with, or what I am coming up with is a framework to understand values, to understand why we make the choices that we make to understand our successes, understand our failures. And once you get it, well, then you get to make the choices that you want to make in life. If you don’t get it, if you’re living on accident, doesn’t matter. Do what you want to. Right. Walk over the hurdles.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:50:20):
Yeah. Good, good metaphor. What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in your life?
PJ Brady (00:50:39):
So this is hard, cause there’s so many good lessons. That’s why I’m stalling and choosing from there. Like there’s some easy ones like that. I talk about my mother is just be kind right. But there’s another one that my mom taught, told me. And I’ll struggle with this a lot too, but it just keeps coming back. And there was, um, I was 18 years old, 19 years old and had a friend who had gotten into a relationship with a married person. Right. So they’re having an affair with a married person and they told me about it and it’s not like I reacted badly. I just barely reacted. And I kind of took a step back and didn’t really want to talk about it. And then I went to my mom because this was a close friend. And I said, mom, this is what’s happening.
PJ Brady (00:51:25):
And it sucks. It’s like, they’re going against what we believe in. Like, I, I don’t know how I can be friends with this person and talk to them anymore. Like I they’re just making choices. I don’t agree with. And my mom said, said, look, I have had a lot of friends in my life who have made bad choices. I’ve been a person who has made bad choices. And in those times in life, what you need most is your friends to be around you, not your friends to be away from you. You don’t have to agree with the choice, but being there, being able to listen, not judging them for their actions. Cause you don’t, you’re not living their lives. You don’t know what’s going on in their world. Being there as a friend. That’s if you’re truly a friend with them, that’s what you’re going to do.
PJ Brady (00:52:09):
And so she never said the word judgment, but that’s what the lesson’s about. Right? Not being judgemental to say, Hey, I can’t put myself in your shoes right now. And that’s okay. I’m still here to be your friend. I’m here to listen to you. I’m here to care about you. And after all that episode is over all that, whatever that circumstances are over, you’re even closer. As a friend, you’ve made a deeper connection, a deeper bond with someone that lasts far beyond. So if we ignored everybody in our life who we feel is making a bad choice, well, take a second. See where that bad choice might be coming from. And just, if you can’t empathize with, it’s still stick around and be there for that. This is not me saying, stay in an abusive relationship. This isn’t saying like, there’s, there’s obvious limits to this. Right. And that’s the part about kindness? It’s not just being kind to others. It’s also being kind to yourself, but I was under no threatened that sir, in that circumstance. So being there for someone, so that nonjudgmental lesson that I got, that’s one that I’ve has really touched me. And I hold that one. I try to hold myself to that standard all the time. I fail too. But it doesn’t always work.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:53:22):
Is there something that people seem to misunderstand you?
PJ Brady (00:53:28):
Yes. So because of the BSK stuff, people always think that I’m brave smart and kind.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:53:37):
PJ Brady (00:53:39):
Oh, well you came over Brave, Smart & Kind. So obviously you were raised Brave, smart & kind and I’m like, no, no. And that’s the same thing with the girls. I do not expect them to be Brave, Smart & Kind. Right. I expect them to understand what it is. And hopefully as they’re guided through their life, that is a beacon that they get to work towards. I would say BSK and where it came from is much more with me and my experiences that I’ve had. And when I fear, when I feel fearful and I don’t make a choice because I’m scared and I still do that regularly. Right. Right. If I’m feeling, if I just feel bad about my or not good about myself in terms of where I’m in at, in life. Well maybe I just need to go learn something new. Maybe it’s not knowledge, maybe it’s perspective.
PJ Brady (00:54:29):
Maybe it’s something that I need to get outside of my bubble and go figure something out because that’s going to lend something else to me. And when I, I am unkind, I am unkind. There’s things that I do that hurt people. I know, I know you can’t believe it. Right. Um, but there’s things that I, that I do. I don’t always say kind things or do kind of things, but that’s where I want to be. That’s where I’m guiding it. Don’t get me wrong. I, I feel I am a kind person, but I also do things that are unkind. Right. So that’s the thing. And that’s the thing of the difference between being something and doing something. And Bernay Brown makes an incredible point in daring, greatly that book. And she says, you know, it’s not like if you start to tell anybody, you are like this, this is who you are. And then if they do something that’s against what they are, then they feel terrible about it. I am a kind person who sometimes does unkind things. I’m a brave person who sometimes lets fear control their life. I’m a smart person who does stupid shit.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:55:32):
Yeah. They’re humans.
PJ Brady (00:55:34):
Exactly, exactly. And so that’s the biggest thing that I’ve done with my daughters is like, they’ll come home and they’ll say, daddy, I’m not smart. I’m like, blah, blah, blah. And they’re like, okay, sorry, I didn’t do something smart. But at a young age, getting them to change that language in that thinking around what you are versus what you do. I mean, for me, because I teach these values and the public persona, I guess is they see the Brave, Smart & Ki,d stuff all the time. And they’re not in my life. Seeing the, not brave, not smart, not kind stuff. They have that assumption that that’s who I am. And that’s it a, an impossible standard to live up to. I’ve repeat myself that I am not just so that people don’t. They see the, yeah. Alright. You made a mistake in this area. This is how we’re going to talk about it. This is how we’re going to approach it. Let’s figure that stuff.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:56:24):
Thank you for sharing that. What’s the talking about kind, what’s the best compliment you ever received?
PJ Brady (00:56:31):
So this one, I don’t do well with compliments. Anytime someone gives me a compliment. I’m like, no, I like, and not in a, in a, I think it, but I don’t want to show it kind of way. It’s like, I, I struggle with compliments. This one though happened just a couple of weeks ago. The best compliment of my life happened a couple of weeks ago.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:56:53):
I’m happy to ask the question.
PJ Brady (00:56:55):
So, um, I’ve got a, you know, brave, smart kind page on Facebook and brave, smart, kind.com where people can, can look through the stuff. And I, uh, my middle child had to have some dental work, right. She had to have some brackets put into her mouth to help shape her teeth. And she was really scared. So she went to the dentist and um, she refused to open her mouth. Like she’s like, Nope, not doing it. So clamped her mouth shut dentists couldn’t do anything. So…
Isabelle Dumortier (00:57:26):
You never think that dentists would have like those kinds of situations
PJ Brady (00:57:30):
Yeah. Show me your teeth.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:57:34):
PJ Brady (00:57:36):
She came home and was obviously disappointed. We had to make another appointment for like two days later. But, uh, I was at, I had an event, so I couldn’t do it at the side. I couldn’t go with her. And so I made her a video and so I play the guitar and sing not, I’m not a good guitar player. I would never post myself playing songs. Like that’s not a sense of pride, but it is fun. And so I was like, you know what, I’m going to do, Emily and, and I like to sing together. So I’m going to play the guitar and send my wife the video. So she’s got on her phone. So Emily and whilst she can do this, she can be brave and watch the video. And so I was singing your songs. So I set up the video camera, started playing the song.
PJ Brady (00:58:19):
And at the moment when I started playing the three year old, walked into the room and starts playing with the guitar, she starts messing with the mic. She starts jumping up and down in front of the camera. Like it was hilarious just being a total clown the entire time. And so I was like, all right, well, I don’t post things about me singing, but I do post hilarious things that are going on in the world. So I posted this to Facebook and um, one of my wife’s friends saw it and a younger woman who in her mind, she’s like, I don’t want to have kids. I’m cool with that. And more power to her. And she watched the video and she, her heart just melted. And she’s like, V, my wife. She’s like, V, I watched the video and you know, I don’t want to have kids, but that made my ovaries rattle. I think that’s the best compliment anyone has ever given me. She’s like he made my ovaries rattle,
Isabelle Dumortier (00:59:26):
That’s like full on 100% of biological men. That’s like manifesting there and going like, Ooh, wow. I did a great job there. I like it.
PJ Brady (00:59:43):
So I turned into probably the same shade of red that I’m turning right now, but that was hilarious and wonderful.
Isabelle Dumortier (00:59:51):
That’s nice. To counter the happiness. What’s the, one of the things in your journey today that you’re tired of?
PJ Brady (01:00:00):
Uh, the, in this even obviously, like I said, me not living the Brave, Smart & Kind life. This has gotten into my self. Sometimes it’s just the negativity. Right. And then I’ll have those days, weeks, months where I’m just not feeling up to it. Right. Like things just aren’t going. Right. And I start to get into that darker space of just being negative. And then I’ll pull myself out as I’m there. Like I can’t handle other people’s negativity either. And so my daughter climbed into bed the other day in the morning and it was right before school. And so I always play the music for them to wake up. And she came into my bedroom and she got under the covers and I was like, Hey Allie, can you, um, I need you to take a shower this morning. And she just started yelling at me.
PJ Brady (01:00:48):
Like, there wasn’t even like a no, come on, dad, do I have to, no, it was straight in yell that she was not going to do this. And I was like, Oh, you want to do the barking game? I can bark to it. I just like, get in the shower. Like these moments as parents. We just have those situations. And as soon as I did it, I was just like, Oh, what are you doing? Brady, come on man. Like, dude, you know, do this better. But there’s other negative things that have happened to me that night before, like just some stuff with work and some stuff at home and whatever. And so I was just, wasn’t in a place to be positive at that moment. And so she came in with her negativity. I countered with negativity. And like I said before, I’m a quick apologizer.
PJ Brady (01:01:28):
So it didn’t take long to say, I’m sorry, she’s also a quick apologizer that we hugged it out. It was fine. But God, I just have so little tolerance for negativity right now, which is too bad because we need to have tolerance and patience for those things as if there’s anything we established it’s we’re not going to be perfect. But, um, yeah, that, that part it’s like, no, let’s keep that, keep that out of my life. And if it’s there it’s, it needs to be short lived and to make the choice to get past it.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:01:59):
And again, very much about being human.
PJ Brady (01:02:03):
Yeah. What is this with these humanity stuff?
Isabelle Dumortier (01:02:06):
To counter again, that last question. Um, what’s a part of, or what in your journey today is giving you a lot of energy. What are you into that you’re in the midst of discovering or rediscovering what’s happening in your journey right now? Right.
PJ Brady (01:02:27):
So I’ve been writing a book about raising kids to be Brave, Smart and kind. Do out, who knows?
Isabelle Dumortier (01:02:37):
How I write my book as well.
PJ Brady (01:02:40):
Here’s the thing. I’ve got so much content in my brain and I feel like I’ve written all of that down. And I feel like when I read through what I’ve written, that it’s just not enough. And so I am back into research mode. So I’m going back into other writers who I just love and books that I love that I’ve grown up on and going back and rediscovering. And that’s the cool thing is that once you read these books, your perspective changes all the time. And sometimes you just need the right lesson at the right time in life to match up for, for something to shift in your world. Right? And so I’m rereading a lot of just the classic books that I have loved to read. And that has been just eyeopening because now what I’m looking through is through a BSK perspective. Like I have my BSK lens on.
PJ Brady (01:03:26):
And I’m like, I’m just, I don’t like Kindle. I’m not an electronic book type of person. I’m a paper book and I fold pages and written notes in the margins. And then I go back and make notes of my notes. And so that’s where I’m at. And I looked through these books that I’ve read before and I’ve liked tripled the pages that I’ve folded to. Like, here’s something that’s much more relevant in my world right now. And so from that perspective, I’m just relearning it and I should do that anyway, but very specifically to add to the book to say, okay, well here’s how other people have lived in their lives. Here’s some historical references. Here’s how you look at some incredible leaders through their lives and what they had to go through. And if they were looking through this in a BSK lens, how can you teach it to your kids through a BSK lens? How can you implement it in school through a BSK lens? How can I do it as a parent so that my girls can see it through that starts to see it through that lens and change their perspective. And that’s been eyeopening and jaw dropping for me right now.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:04:23):
So, and the theme of this podcast and video is curiosity. What are you most curious about now?
PJ Brady (01:04:31):
This is going to be completely counterproductive. Um, uh, you know how I said, I’m lucky and you look for preparation meeting opportunity. Well, right now I’m into stocks.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:04:48):
Oh, I was doubting if it was that or the lottery with that intro,
PJ Brady (01:04:53):
I just play the lottery all the time. I put all my money into it. It’s this super smart thing to do. Right. (sarcastic). Um, preparation meets opportunity. Uh, I know nothing about the stock market. Like I said before, I’m not a good money business person. And so I’m reading more about that now and because the stock market is so low right now, I wanted to sit to jump on that. I’ve got a friend who’s, uh, who’s an investor. And he said, now’s a great time to invest. So I was like, all right, well, let me look around things about how there’s really low stocks right now that I can invest in. So that maybe I’m lucky later when those stocks go up. So it’s when the opportunity meets the preparation. So I need to prepare myself for these certain opportunities as nothing to do with being Brave, Smart & Kind. As a theory, it’s pretty brave. At least my, my wife does not like to spend money. So she gave me, she gave me a bucket of money. She’s like, here’s, here’s what you’re allowed to invest.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:05:46):
I like that way. That’s nice. So if I’m, if I could remove all barriers and restraints, um, and you could do whatever project you’d like to do and get on that full time and you want to be known for, yeah.
PJ Brady (01:06:02):
I mean, the BSK project is what I’m calling this. So this is, this is the project. And this for me is my forever job. This is my forever goal. This is my forever life is going out and training and speaking and raising others up and educating them so that they can do it and teaching them so that they can go out and be kind of ambassadors. And what I want now is like this BSK army of just people who are going out and talking about this in the world. And I started with kind of, I call it a business plan, but it’s just more of a strategic plan of attack to get into this, but how to get into more schools and get teachers on board because these Michelle Sabol one of them, but there’s been others too who have just picked up this and started waving the banner, you know, running with it.
PJ Brady (01:06:47):
And so it’s that it’s getting in front of parents, it’s getting in front of business people who can put this in their lives. One of the teachers who implements it, her father runs a ‘habitat for humanity’, um, chapter, I guess it is. And as soon as he learned about it, he put it up on his board to, to talk about being Brave, Smart and Kind and everything that they do. And because people follow a bigger purpose and this can be a bigger purpose. This speaks to everyone in a different way. And so if there’s any barriers right now, it’s, I, I’m still trying to figure out how to find that army of people who want to be part of this.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:07:25):
If you’re listening and you want to be part of the army, let us know.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:07:33):
All science would fail us. Um, books are the only thing left 150 years from now. We find a book from you. What does it say on the blurb?
PJ Brady (01:07:46):
Um, it says, PJ Brady, luckiest, man alive. I love it. Yeah. Uh, and I mean, it goes, it’s so easy to be able to talk about being Brave, Smart & Kind and so hard to do, but the initial part of just getting someone to nod their head and being like, yeah, that makes sense to me. That’s going to shape the way that I think about something. That’s the shape, how I act from now on, if I’m able to do that. And that that book is about, Hey, here’s someone who just kept showing up and kept trying and stumbled along this that might change your mind on something.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:08:29):
So how would that look on a billboard today?
PJ Brady (01:08:34):
See, it’s not even just as easy as saying Brave, Smart & Kind of like you have to like really get to someone’s soul. So, um, I thought about a couple of different billboards. One just says, “don’t be an asshole.”
Isabelle Dumortier (01:08:46):
That would be great at big traffic junctions. Like, don’t be an asshole.
PJ Brady (01:08:53):
If there’s something. So I’ve done an exercise. I don’t remember where I first did it, but I did it with just an Excel the other day. And I took, um, an Excel and I took the average number of weeks in someone’s life. And I made each week a check box. And then I filled in how many weeks I’ve lived. And based on the average, how many weeks I still have to live. And I looked at it and I was like, Oh, this is terrible. Tear this up. This is terrible perspective. And then I showed it to my wife and she’s like, why would you show this to me? Like to have that perspective of it. And it’s not even necessarily about being Brave, Smart & Kind, from a billboard of what I want people to see is here’s what you you’ve been given. Be thankful for that.
PJ Brady (01:09:42):
Here’s where you are. So like maybe if you’re 20 years old, you have this number of check marks. It could just like, maybe can, can I have an electronic billboard? Great, awesome. So if you’re 20 years old, this is how many boxes you’ve lived. This is how many you have left. If you’re 30 years old, here’s what if you’re 45 years old? If you’re 60 years old, here’s what you’ve got left. What do you want to do with your life? The rest? Like you can’t change anything that’s happened in the past, but you can live the rest of it purposely. You can live the rest of your life, whatever you want to do. It’s yours.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:10:14):
That brings me to one of our final questions. What challenge do you have for me and anyone listening? Yeah.
PJ Brady (01:10:22):
Live on purpose. Like we said, living on accident is easy, live on purpose. It’s going to be hard. My trip over some hurdles, you might get hurt, but if you do that, then what you’re able to do is just be happy, right? To be, to get to your goals, to do all those things. If you start living on purpose, then you know, we talk about failure, but you start to have less of it. You start to find your more successes, right? How do you, how are you successful through experience? How do you get experience through failing? Go live, go do it on purpose fail, where you want to fail, go learn something and mess it up. That’s fine. Just do it on purpose. And then it’s okay to fail. What you’re doing is you’re learning and you’re growing along the way, take your failure, suck it up, taste it right. And then exactly. And then learn from it, grow from it. If you’re living on purpose, then you’re able to do those things much better. If you’re living on accident and you see every failure as a stumbling block, you see every failure as something that you did wrong as a decision, you made wrong. Failures is not a consequence of wrong decisions, failure as a consequence of action, take action, fail, do better. Grow. You’ll be fine, right?
Isabelle Dumortier (01:11:46):
Yeah. I like it. What are the top three books you would recommend? And why?
PJ Brady (01:11:53):
Well, if some of these are the ones that I’ve been rereading. And so this one I reread like every two or three years is ‘How to win friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie’. And when I tell people the title of that book who haven’t read it, obviously they’re like, Oh, what a liar? And fake, like, why are you trying to win friends and influence people? It’s like, no, if you read the book, you realize it comes from a very genuine place. How to listen to people, how to, how to solve conflict, right? It gives you very, what I love about that book is it gives you extremely specific actions that you can take to help people to live a life of service. I love that one. Um, one that I read very recently, it was daring greatly by Renee Brown. She’s like a wizard and the other one is, and the other one, um, I haven’t read in a long time. I need to pick it up again is Robin hood, classic. And for me in leadership, he’s the person you should strive to be.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:12:57):
Steal from the rich, give it to the poor.
PJ Brady (01:13:03):
Except for the stealing part, come on!! Think bigger than yourself. He came from a life of privilege. Had to change his mind was forced to change. His mind came in. He was able to lead other people to be happy, to be greater. And yeah, he fought against corruption, right? And he fought to help other people in a time when other weren’t thinking about that. So that message, even when it was written, like that message is deeply needed. I feel it is now too. If I tell people say what’s a good leadership book, I say, read Robin hood.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:13:31):
How can we follow your journey?
PJ Brady (01:13:35):
Um, so look, the easiest ways is bravesmartkind.com. Um, Instagram, Facebook, I have a Facebook group called the BSK project. Um, but beyond that, uh, have a conversation. Let’s talk. If you’re a school, you want to have a conversation. I’m, I’m doing my best in this. I never want to charge a school. Anything ever, I don’t, this, this stuff should be able to just take it, please implement it. There’s other ways that I’m figuring out how this is my all the time lifestyle, right? But charging schools to do that; isn’t what I want to do. So if there’s any schools that are interested in this, call me up, I don’t have my material in Dutch or French right now that is a work in progress. But at the very least let’s have a conversation about it. We can talk about how other people are doing it. And then I, I can’t be the only messenger of this. I never wanted to be the only messenger of this. I want a lot of people to be able to deliver this in the same way, in the same, the same passion, the same belief in it that I’ve got, and I’m willing to do anything to help make that happen.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:14:44):
Then I suggest that we all keep on following your journey. Thank you so much for being here. Thank you so much for sharing your super inspirational story. I’m very grateful for having you and I can’t wait to see BSK unfolding all over the world.
PJ Brady (01:15:00):
Well thank you for having me. You’re always one of my favorite people.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:15:03):
PJ is one of mine. Find everything we discussed on thisistc.com/episode2. My heart is filled with gratitude for you tuning in. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Oh, and definitely don’t forget to hit the subscribe button on your way out. My next guest is Stijn Francis. A professional soccer player turned into Europe’s most known footballer CEO. If you have any questions or feedback, don’t hesitate to send me a message through your preferred channel. I’m always curious to hear what you think you can find all contact info on. Thisistc.com.
Isabelle Dumortier (01:15:39):
Have a great day and stay curious.