Knucklehead Podcast: Episode 110 – Ben Killoy, Are Fathers Necessary?

Knucklehead Podcast: Episode 110 – Ben Killoy, Are Fathers Necessary?

Today we’re talking with Ben Killoy, prior Marine and host of The Military Veteran Dad.

The Military Veteran Dad is podcast with a simple mission. Bring every dad home both physically and mentally. The show shares and inspires authentic conversation that will inspire hope and action to close the gap between the dad you are today and the dad you want to be tomorrow.

Ben Killoy (00:01): But my five year old the other day was just asking like, daddy, why did you lose your job? Why they didn't want you anymore? For me, I wanted to show that daddys not down for the punch. It's about getting back up. It's about when you fall off, you get back on and you keep trying.

Intro music (00:26): Choose not to live in a world of filters. Realize your mistakes. Set the foundation for your success, get some wins. Knucklehead podcast. Mmm,

Stephen Colon (00:27): Welcome to another edition of Knucklehead Podcast. I've been calling them editions for a long time. They're really episodes. So just a quick correction and it is a episode of knucklehead podcast. So for those of you who are listening, welcome to the conversation. I've got Ben Killroy and he's a prior Marine. For those of you who are checking out the audio gram, you can see very clearly and he's got a very nice American flag with an Eagle globe and anchor and his name and his time in the service. So Ben, we appreciate your service, appreciate you taking the time to come onto the show. He's a fellow podcaster, but more importantly, the, one of the biggest things that, that I wouldn't have been on this show for is his leaning into the resistance of the military veteran dad. That's his audience. He has a podcast called the Military Veteran Dad.

Stephen Colon (01:14): And when you think about the amount of people that are thrust into being a father or thrust into the responsibility of they volunteer to become a dad, that creates an opportunity for you to screw up royally and you're molding and shaping the future, not just of your family, but really potentially the economic impact of the next generation. You're either deciding to adhere to the values and morals and you know the set of principles that you were raised with. Are you going to continue those with this next generation? So I'm really pretty excited to have Ben on the show to talk about the opportunity to screw up the opportunity to have mistakes. How those spill over as a father, how those spill over into your performance in the workplace. You know what lessons from a leadership standpoint, he was able to gleam from his experience in the military. And really develop himself to become the standup man of integrity that I know he is today. And also kind of how he views opportunity. I know that for a period of time he was a community manager, or at least at operated in some way, shape or form to help build a social media platform for other folks before he started doing it himself. I'm interested to get some feedback about that. And so with that, Ben, welcome to the show buddy. How in the hell are you

Ben Killoy (02:24): Never been better? Every day I get to wake up to my best life and I get to step into a future that I get more excited about.

Stephen Colon (02:31): Well, it's interesting. I appreciate that transparency. So I was at a veteran's panel on veteran's day last November at the university of Texas, and the topic was essentially veterans and the perception of victim hood, right? So they folks, whenever they look at veterans who have anxiety issues, or PTs is how it was classified, instead of it being a disorder, post traumatic stress, you go through the process of dealing with adversity and, uh, in issues. And, uh, the crowd, uh, is very, very affluent donors, right? They donate a crap ton of money to this particular university specifically for brain performance. And here these veterans are talking about rosy things. Nice, easy to listen to, snippets, kind of taking a bad situation and turning it around. And one of the oldest ladies there said, Hey, listen, I, you know, I understand everything's right. Real nice and great and everything, but I want to hear some of the crap I want to hear.

Stephen Colon (03:22): Did you have a hard time making love to your wife after you got back from work? Did you have a tough time developing confidence when other people are more experienced in the professional world than you? Like what went through your mind and what was the bad stuff? And quite honestly been in today's social media world, there's a lot of people who like to put this positive spin on things and I get it. However, you and I both know that where the rubber meets the road and where the issues are are the things that are difficult to talk about. The things that you really just kind of want to put in the closet, close the door, and not talk about and discuss. That's where it really, where the substantive conversations and outcomes that we're looking for end up happening. So when I hear people talk about they're living their best life, I think it's awesome. However, I know as well, there's some, it is, there's some, there's some great days and there's some days where you're just like, you know, at least I'm around my kids, my family, but I really kind of wish I was alone right now because they are on my last nerve, that type of thing. Or maybe that's just me. That's, I'm not projecting that on you at all. I'm would imagine that you never go through any of that. Right.

Ben Killoy (04:21): I have gone through a thousand peaks and values and to tell you a thousand is underestimating it. And so part of me, so there's probably a little bit of story backstory of why I said never been better. So before January 27th my answer is always better than good because I never liked saying good or fine cause everybody says they're good at fine. No one's really good or science. And so I always wanted to say better than good because it was something I took from Zig Ziglar and I really liked it and I often found it reminded me to get myself out of a Splunk that maybe I didn't really feel better than good. But it reminded me like, you know what? I got a lot to be better at. But then also it lifted someone else up cause it helped them bring out the song. And so that was kind of my reminder for myself.

Ben Killoy (05:01): But then also it helped others. And then on January 27th I lost my position at work. They eliminated the position I had. So I became my employed and about two weeks after I went to, before I had wrapped up my job, I went to work on Monday and I was like, you know what? I never felt more alive than I do right now. Like I felt my heart rate something better. My finger, my anxiety was lower and I was just like, I feel never been better. And as I've gone through this transition of being unemployed, in going through this whole process of growing and figuring out what the next pivot, like, I'm literally stepping into more and more like my never better life because every day I'm taking bigger and better goals than I've ever done in my life before. But I would say if the old Ben Calais would've never answered that or never been better because there was this gut feeling inside that like I'm supposed to be doing something else.

Ben Killoy (05:55): But there was the outside that just kind of stood neutral and it was that internal anxiety that just kind of made you internally tell yourself that you're a piece of garbage and that piece of garbage doesn't deserve to feel better than anything. You should keep beating yourself up internally. But like right now I'm at a point where I'm going through kind of a transformation is what I've been kind of calling it. I'd be going and doing the 75 hard challenge. That's something you do physically on the outside. And that's always been something that's been mismatched for me. Like I've done a lot of inner work, but the outside never matched the inside. And so I'm taking this break during Corona to really go all in on my fitness and get the version of myself in the mirror equally as lovable as the version that,

Stephen Colon (06:39): so that was a, that was a process to get to the process. And I've heard people say whenever it comes to personal growth, right, there's a, there's a discipline component that typically the things that you need to be doing are very easy to do. They're very easy not to do in 2020. It's never been easier to do it either. Yeah, I mean you can, it conveniently, you can either use whatever is going on as a distraction or as a reason why you're not able to do something. Or you can lean into it and, and decide that, yeah, this is, this is actually, um, the reason why I want to do it. For instance, I woke up this morning and went on a run with my wife, right. Could use the excuse that my kids and my dog and my house and, uh, the work that I had to get done are the reasons why I wasn't able to go get the PTN.

Stephen Colon (07:26): However, um, you go do it because you want to be able to stay in shape. You want to be able to be healthy, you want to make good, positive, healthy choices, uh, because you know, if you can win the morning, I think Tim Ferriss said it, he said, you win the morning and then you can win the day. And if you look at your, your calendar and you say, all right, if there's 10 productive hours throughout the day, which really there's closer to 14 productive hours that you can truly be productive and leveraged time zones and you could potentially make 24 hours completely productive depending upon where your team is. Uh, but from a, from in the context of what we're talking about here is as a dad, really what you want to do is you want to try to look at each individual week for your kids.

Stephen Colon (08:05): I mean, there's 52 opportunities throughout the year. Uh, cause there's 52 weeks in a year to leave an impression on your children. And however, I don't want to, you know, get into that right here. I'm interested kind of what your perspective is being a dad and you know, looking at what happened to you in January and how you leverage that as an opportunity to leave an impression on your kids because they're gonna lose a job at one point in time throughout the course of their lifetime. So you want to be able to talk with integrity about how you handled it. So walk us through a little bit of that process of how you got to there in January and then what was your mental makeup on how you were going to leverage that as an opportunity to teach your kids a lesson

Ben Killoy (08:44): like it's, I think most people go through a job loss experience and it's probably the most devastating that most men go through. Like a lot of our security comes from that position. Are our values or identity very similar to the military. So when you remove it, you go through an identity crisis, you go through a thousand sheds in your head. If I should have done this, I could've done that. But the one thing that kind of got me through was my podcast. Like literally I could say my podcast saved my life. Like I didn't try to take my life or I wasn't thinking about it. But having that thing be a vehicle for growth after my job helped keep the momentum going. I didn't need a job to continue my growth. And if I related to my kids, so like my kids are eight, five to three, so they're fairly young, but I've used the word daddy's no longer has a job, dad is going to be home.

Ben Killoy (09:33): But my five year old the other day was just asking like, daddy, why did you lose your job? Why did they didn't want you anymore? They ask really good questions and so the answer I'm going to give them, I don't know whether you'll remember it, I have no idea what that will mean to him, but they have a curiosity to understand what's going on. So for me, I want to show that daddy's not going out. Like I'm not down to the punch that it's about getting back up. It's similar to when a kid learns to ride a bike. It's about when you fall off, you get back on and you keep trying. And so for me, like even before this, having the dad contest, I really have sell and above with being a dad, I really just want to be a dad more than anything.

Ben Killoy (10:11): And so on the other side of this losing my job, I got to step into what I've always really wanted and then try to show up in their lives more like the week after. So immediately when I lost my job, I started trying to change our daycare schedule to start saving money. And so I started getting our kids on the bus when I got the kids in the bus, I had already won because that was a moment that I had been craving for years. And to get him on the bus to be there and receive them, we get that big hug. When I got off, like I felt like I'd already won, like I was a winner in that moment. And so then I just kind of create more of those moments of how I could reconnect and try to build a better life being a dad, but then also trying to step into an entrepreneur to help try to facilitate that freedom, but then really kind of make sure that I'm still at the core at dad.

Ben Killoy (10:58): So not trying to be a workaholic and hang out in the office too much while the kids want me to play and I can't do that. So it's about how to build an integrated life that's been really kind of, it's not a work life balance for me. It's how do I build my life to be integrated where, I mean, even when I'm working on a podcast, my son will set up a laptop, which is a piece of paper and a mouse next to me and pretend that he's doing what daddy does. And that moment is like, some people would say like, I don't want you in my office. And there's times where he can't be in my office, but when I can, I try to bring him in here. I mean, there was a time being in front of my desk. He set up a table by the window. He took an iPad, put his headphones on, and he was recording a podcast supporting like he's always watching. So it's so important when you start tying to build something after cause they're, their kids are always watching and you got to make sure that there's steps that you want them to follow.

Speaker 4 (11:47): Have you ever asked yourself why you haven't started a podcast? Well, I already know the reason. So to you, you don't feel like you're tech savvy. You don't feel like you got your message wired right. And quite frankly, it's just, it's all this mystification going on. Quite frankly. Our process helps to demystify that. We're pushed button for podcasts. We're not going to hit why knucklehead. But we lead with the fact that you don't know what you're doing. Yeah, we do. We've been there. We've actually been in your shoes. We take your spoken voice. We literally give a human voice. To your website, you want to bring dead leads to life, well then you need to talk to knucklehead. Essentially what we're going to do is we're going to take you through our process or we're going to help take your human voice and increase the process for you going from dead leads to life.

Speaker 4 (12:29): How do I, how do I do that? Well, you essentially just take your human voice, put it in a directory, and let people consume more of you. Give your audience the ability to Netflix on you. They want to binge watch you. They want to binge listen. Give them the ability to take your voice along on that commute with them so you can get in touch with us, Steven at knucklehead podcasts, or if you've got a really cool story stories at knucklehead podcast, you can find us on LinkedIn and on Facebook and not go to promotions LLC and get in touch with us. Don't be a beta about the process. Don't let be fact that you don't know, preventing you from getting some wins. So don't be a beta. Get some wins and contact us the next day.

Stephen Colon (13:07): Let's back up a sec. So first of all, the, the summary of what you just described is, I think not what every dad, what every parent goes through. It's like what every parent, you try to figure out this new normal, right? And everything kind of goes back to how do you establish a baseline for whatever you're going through in life. And you know, realizing that your kids go through different progressions and stages, uh, is, you know, it's difficult, right? And when it's especially, it's difficult whenever you see them regress, uh, you know, um, my five year old, he's, he's going through, uh, bedwetting again, like he's, he was already through that process, but now he's backed up and he's, he's, he's actually made the decision that he's going to pee on himself, not, you know, go to the bathroom anymore in the toilet. Like he's, we've already gone through this lesson.

Stephen Colon (13:53): Like, why are we having to go back through this again? So then, you know, as a parent, you kind of go through this thing of, what am I doing to cause this behavior at? My kid's not realizing that he is his own kiddo. He's his own person. Uh, and maybe the environment around him, it got stressful because of this whole transition to a hundred percent online learning as opposed to um, you know, in person learning or that he, he had a routine that got completely disrupted. So you know, he's dealing with that in a different way. So I say all that to say that prior to your being able to have kind of a mass quantity in terms of time with your kids, how did you deal with the balance of wanting to be a provider and you know, have a job and still be able to be the dad that you had strived to be?

Ben Killoy (14:40): So I think it came because I have a podcast for fathers. So like before I even launched, I knew I was not going to create a podcast about being a good dad. At the same time, being a bad dad to my own kids like that once I knew in the very beginning. So I was like, how do I create this in my head? And I've been part of dad communities on Facebook for prior years before public, three years before. So I already kind of been surrounding myself with great mentorship and great examples of what good photo would look like. So I knew where I needed to be. And so that really helped try to create the path, like when you surround yourself with a group of people that are at different levels of life, but they are giving you different blueprints that you can bring into your life that really helps take you from where you are to where you really want to be in a way that is controlled.

Ben Killoy (15:30): And so when I did this podcast, that was probably the best example when I added that, like people would be like, how do you do a weekly podcast and never miss a week? Well, part of that was I realized even before I launched my podcast, I can't remember how it came into my life, but I learned an important lesson. Starbucks opened at 5:00 AM here locally on the weekends. And so I really wanted this podcast. So probably upright until Corona hit essentially until I lost my job. That's when I stopped going into weekends, but for almost a year and a half, Saturday and Sunday morning it's finding out I was at Starbucks and five to eight in those non priority hours of fatherhood working on my podcast. Those two days, two mornings are the reason why the podcast kept going and then I would get everything done and then at eight o'clock I would come home.

Ben Killoy (16:16): We talked about own your morning on your life like I was owning that morning time, which was them just sitting at home eating cereal and watching cartoons and afterwards then I could come home and then the entire day other than maybe a podcast interview here or there was was ours to do as a family. So I strategically set it up to where I utilize the non priority hours, whether it be a nighttime interview, whether it be those mornings on the Saturday and Sunday or I also take my vacation. I would use a vacation day to take podcasts. I strategically said I'm not going to burden my family and take memories and prayed them for a podcast, which meant I got wind a bit slower but I did what I did to get through to that moment. And another example is I didn't do a lot of social sharing last year because it just didn't fit in.

Ben Killoy (17:04): And I was like, I'm not going to borrow time for my family to share something on social but you could help but I'm not. That transaction does compute. But then on the other side of January I started doing it cause I had a little bit more control I was in, I was more comfortable with it and I did it when I was ready. So I think that's something that most dads like you, you get so caught up in like, especially in business, you can think of it like buying a blueprint of how to start a business and there's 15 steps and you try to do all 15 steps in the first month and you don't realize that those 15 steps are supposed to take five years or you don't realize that you were in a season of life as a dad. That's an important principle that I've really identifying the season of life you're in and being real with it.

Ben Killoy (17:48): I had so many ideas that are even bigger than the podcast and I would often tell us that's a good idea. That's just not for this season of my life. Like right now my kids are young and these are the seasons that everybody wants back. They'll never come back. I'll never wish I did that big idea when I was 50 versus playing with my kids. So like just saying like, yeah, I'll do that when my kids don't want to hang out with me. And that's perfectly fine. And that's something that really kind of gives you a piece to enter and be present with your kids because you can push and prioritize whenever you're trying to deal with. And as men, we try to take on too much and we try to do it ourselves without talking to people to try to do it as like a tribe, which then makes it that much heavier and it just starts to weigh you down and burn you out. And so I knew from the very beginning I needed to separate that, prioritize it, and recognize what was the right season of life to worry about that.

Stephen Colon (18:43): So it's interesting. These, this, uh, the idea, I mean, I'll just be real clear here. So being a dad means that you're a male, right? So you're a, you're a dude and you, you know, you have in today's world where it's 20, 20, and folks are blurring the lines and they're trying to, uh, restructure how things are interpreted. Um, it doesn't really sit too well with me. However, I'm not confused about what the truth is. And, and, uh, I want to be real clear here whenever I'm speaking that, um, you know, there are things that my wife does that I cannot do and there's things that I do that my wife cannot do. And, uh, there is distinct differences between her role and my role and it's not established by society. It's established by what we prioritize in our life. Maybe it's influenced by society and I'm, I'm not naive enough to think that I'm not, uh, that I'm immune to that. However, um, you know, there's a natural process that is taking place in the development of my young boys. And so in your experience, you know, as a, as a dad, where to, where do 2020 dads screw up, uh, where, you know, maybe 1970s, 1980s dads got it. Right.

Ben Killoy (19:57): I think the 2020 dads screw up when it's a little bit tricky because in 1970, the protector and the provider were really the two primary roles of a dad. And it's the kind of leave it to Beaver mindset. Dad went to work, he earned his money, he came home. Then you can sit and read the paper while it is in play and the mom cleaned the house and made dinner. I would say in 2020 where we get it wrong is that we probably don't recognize that we have value. I would say the general definition of fatherhood is that we don't matter and it's reinforced by the legal definition that courts use in divorce and that a child is just better off with their mother and that every other weekend with their dad is enough. And that's the exact opposite of what anybody that knows about fatherhood has done studies or looked into the data or just understands the biological requirements.

Ben Killoy (20:55): Like there's a, I can't think of the chemical, but there's a chemical that's in a mom's body days after the birth of a baby, the exact same chemical at the exact same quantities is existed in a father and they never did anything biological other than the conceiving of the baby. Like they didn't emotionally connect to it, but they have the exact same chemical which is essentially that binding chemical in fathers. And I was just watching a Ted talk which brilliantly said this example of why five of it matters so much and it was a divorce lawyer in Nevada and she was talking about how the most often thing that moms go to and divorce, why a dad shouldn't be in their lives is you don't know what their grades were. You don't know what their favorite sandwiches, you don't know a lot about them. And then she's like, and most dads don't know those questions, but the questions they do know the answer to is what scares them?

Ben Killoy (21:48): What's, what's their biggest fear? What, what are they struggling with? Where do they want to go with their lives? Those questions dad always knows the answer to. And so it speaks to the part of the male, the male masculine shrink that we have an ability to be that strength for others to help them through different motions. And that is just part something that we have. It's part of our DNA and it's something that girls need in their lives. Like the idea that a girl can grow up without a father is almost absurd because the idea of a father and a girl's life is she's going to go out into life and measure every person she wrote, every meal she runs into by the measurement of her father. If she starts gaining, she's going to dump up. If he doesn't measure up to her father. And if you don't have that bar, there's no bar set for that girl.

Ben Killoy (22:38): What a quality man looks like. She's going to go through a lot of rough relationships that comes from the male being part of their life. And there's no way you can argue that a mom, because it's not possible. It's part of the genetics of what you're looking for and it's just so important. So I think at 2020 you have to recognize and step into your ability that fatherhood matters and it can change an entire child's life forever, and you can never sacrifice any of those days as much as possible, and you fight till the end to be in the kids' lives.

Stephen Colon (23:09): Yeah, I think that that's a, uh, it's a clear battle that, um, that, you know, the dads have to fight that that's kinda lost sometimes on, on folks that, you know, first of all, like I say to people, um, you know, if you're going to be, if you're going to take it upon yourself, if you're gonna take it upon yourself to indulge, uh, in, um, maybe temporary pleasure so to speak, and you, you don't understand the ramifications or the fallout or the responsibility that it's following up with that, uh, that should influence your decision as to whether or not you should partake, right? This is not quite podcasts. This is not, you know, you did it perfectly the first time, every time podcast. This is not, Hey, look at me. Look how awesome we are. Look how successful this, this particular endeavor is. This is, this is what to just screw up along the way that led to the success that you're looking for, right?

Stephen Colon (23:59): Where, where did you, where did you have choke points or where did you screw up and you know, I remember being a dad for the first time. I remember I didn't really connect with the, the fact that I had a son coming that was going to be mine. Right. I'm not confused about the responsibility that I had at that time. However, until I put my hand on my wife's stomach and felt him kick for the first time, immediately I went to go paint the nursery. As soon as that happened, like it was, it was, I couldn't describe to somebody who hasn't been faced with that level of responsibility. Prior to that kick, I knew I was going to be a dad. Yeah. It was a little scary, but I didn't really understand the ramifications. But then when I felt a life inside of my, my, my wife and felt that that baby kick, then I realized, Oh, Oh yeah, these things don't come with an instruction manual and if I'm going to formulate a plan, I've got to go find dads who I appreciate the way that they live their life and the way that they, the example that they've set, and I gotta be real careful on who I allow to influence my ability to go be a dad.

Stephen Colon (25:11): My dad has been married seven times, excuse me, six times. Um, he wasn't around a whole lot, you know, and his dad wasn't around a whole lot. He was adopted. So it's like you start understanding, okay, what trends do I want to allow to continue and over the course of my life, and I knew that I wasn't going to allow some of the destructive patterns to continue. Right. And so because of that I, we had to make some significant changes. Do you think that that situation, like you don't want to have anything continued from your parents, do you think that that's unique to our generation or based off of the dads that you've had on the show, depending upon their age, do you feel like that's probably pretty par for the course for folks who are brand new parents to begin with? I think there's

Ben Killoy (25:54): in the least, and they'll copy in the last 80 years probably. I think there's always been the biological desire of parents to try to provide a better life. I think even if you were to go even before the great depression, I believe that that's something that you, you insistently, you have a desire to try to make sure this kid has a good bike. Back then it was a lot harder to try to do that, but I think that's why people moved out West and you often heard like, Oh, we wanted to give our family a better shot. So I think we've always tried to give ourselves better shots, but what I, I don't think we really do a good job acknowledging where we have a knucklehead moment is that the lens that we're looking through, our current life is filtered by our past lives. And what it mean by a good example is like one of my very first knucklehead where I hit rock bottom was in finance.

Ben Killoy (26:45): I had just bought a car, I had just bought furniture, I had just financed tires. And because this is what America tells you you should do, it was part of the American program. This was my view of the world. And then I found Dave Ramsey about two weeks after buying my car. I could kick myself. So I was like, man, did I hit stupid really hard multiple times on the road down to signing Dave Ramsey and then you find Dave Ramsey and you're like, Oh my God. I mean student debt isn't just like a child that you raised forever. It's something that can actually go away. Like this isn't anything I've ever heard and it paints the picture that you have to understand that how you view the world is based in the lens of your own life, but you can access other lenses just by simply talking to people and continuing to be curious.

Ben Killoy (27:30): Like one of the biggest crux of fatherhood and social media thing is people assume that you're, you're under like you have to figure it out, but no one acknowledges that. Millennia for Melanie, we've done lights and tribes. Like you had less knucklehead moments probably back then because everybody was supporting each other in those tribes. It was a community effort to hunt and gather and to raise that and like you didn't do it alone, but yet 2020 we have this idea that I have to know all the answers. And when did you start connecting with other dads? You're like, Oh, that guy's got it figured out. I can just take his idea and use it for me and not have to spend all that stress to try to figure it out. And so I think the consistent knucklehead moment for a lot of fathers today is they think that they have to have all the answers.

Ben Killoy (28:15): Like you can go to Google is almost any of that problem and find a YouTube video of blog posts and take access and add that to your life. But so far, and many times we just, we get sucked through the lens that I have to be stoic or I have to hold it all in. I have to project that I have it all together as a father because my kids can't see this weakness. But that's all bullshit because the idea that your kids can't see you, that you're perfectly, your imperfections are going to help them grow through that imperfection. Like sharing your stories of your knucklehead moments is one of the best father tools you can. I was just sharing bootcamp with my daughter the other day like cause she, she gets upset that it always seems like it's her fault but she's the oldest so you always expect more out of her.

Ben Killoy (28:58): And I was like, well in bootcamp it's everybody's fault. It doesn't matter who was a knucklehead and bootcamp, everybody suffers. And she really enjoyed the story. I told it probably like 15 minutes work cause she kept asking follow up questions. That was a moment that I shared from my life that now is added to her life. And so many times they don't do that. But we don't even realize that. Your story of something about fatherhood and I shared that with my daughter or reading something about someone else's journey of fatherhood. That's how you change your lens of how you can go forward. And so many dads today in this culture of social media or we isolate ourselves, we don't enrich ourselves with other views. We get stuck with the current lens of our life. But you have to remember that lens is currently only as strong as your life that you look through. So talking about changing your family tree and trying to change it for the better, I think you have to be one aware that you have the capacity to do that and you choose. But two, you have to realize the bias of what you're looking through first.

Stephen Colon (29:55): Yup. I think that that's a a good summary. So Ben, tell people how to get in touch with you. Tell people what does this podcast you speak of, where can people find it? And then if people wanted to reach out directly with you, how could they do that? So

Ben Killoy (30:09): the website is very easy. Military veteran, dad.com we're pretty much on all the platforms. Apple, Alexa, iHeart radio, you can get it pretty much anywhere. Podcasts are found these days and the podcast essential. We interviewed dads and really anybody that could add value to fatherhood on Mondays, I delivery following Friday solo series on Friday where it's just me and a microphone and the podcast has been over a year old. So there's lots of content out there. You can binge listen as much as you need to, but we essentially try to share vulnerable stories to reconnect and invalidate some of that garbage that your head is turning to tell yourself that no one else is having these common problems. Because Facebook and Instagram says everything is perfect. We share the stories to help cancel out that negative voice and we do it weekly and I get more excited every time.

Ben Killoy (30:53): We're just getting ready to publish episode 71 and the best way to get in touch with me is on Instagram. Ben at underscore coy reach out there. I am more than willing to have the conversation and one of my knucklehead moments is not recognizing that I needed more friends in my life. So when I turned 30 that was kind of like my tipping point where I was like, I'm going to create more friends. So I always try to show up in other's lives to be that friend that I wish I had five years ago. So don't be afraid to reach out. If you have any questions or you meet a friend, I'm more than willing to have a conversation because friendship changed my life and I'm willing to offer it to the origins.

Stephen Colon (31:27): Very cool. Very cool. Well, for those of you who are listening, who are running from one meeting to another, or you used to listen to this on your commute and now you're listening to it from your commute, from the kitchen to your office in your home, my suggestion is you bring a question to Ben Juan, because in my experience, Ben has been very cerebral, very deliberate, very considerate of the circumstance when it comes to answering your question. And the reality is is there's a lot of people who don't or they pretend that they do and it's not. It's not as if everybody has available time to dedicate to solving your problem, and quite frankly, it's your responsibility to figure out your own crap. However, from time to time, it's helpful to grab a couple of minutes with somebody, provide some context to them, and learn how to communicate a little bit.

Stephen Colon (32:10): And that's what Ben has done a really good job of doing. And I appreciate his sincerity and his authenticity and, and, and the mission because I'll be honest, I think dads need more dads and they need more dads that have more experience giving them wisdom. I remember a mentor in my life said a long time ago, you take experience from folks who have more of it than you, and then your responsibility is to do something with it in conjunction with actually going and sharing with somebody who's got less experienced than you. And that cyclical kind of a tribal mentality of sharing, uh, elders stories and then, uh, rearing children and, and helping new dads become a better new dads. Uh, that's our responsibility. It's a cyclical process. And eventually we will get old and have to share some of our wisdom, hopefully if you can be reflective, uh, with our kiddos and our grandkids and our, maybe our great grand babies. So anyway, man, I appreciate you taking some time. Anything else that you want to leave these folks with before we transition to the video side?

Ben Killoy (33:13): I don't think so. I think that you said there beautifully that I often described that in a way of, it's like a barrel of monkeys. You always have one hand up in life to rise up. Then you always have one hand down to pull someone up.

Stephen Colon (33:24): And it's a fun game. Barrel monkeys is a lot of fun. So for those of you who are listening, who are laughing, go have some fun on a Friday or Saturday night with your family, uh, or afternoon. So anyway, uh, we appreciate you. Those of you who like, listen, knucklehead, uh, we got new episodes coming at you every Tuesday. Uh, check us out on LinkedIn, on Facebook, on Instagram, all the different social media channels. Go and check it out. Or if you're just, you know, you want to Google it, that's fine. We're not difficult to find knucklehead podcast. Check us out. And Ben at the military veteran dad podcast. Wherever you listen to your podcasts, make sure you go back and listen. Some of my favorite episodes, uh, are just Ben himself. Uh, I also like Ryan Michler, his episode, uh, the order of man Facebook group. So those are some, some good ones to go check out. My suggestion is go back through and curate that material. He said that he's at episode 70. What, what are you, 72 71

Ben Killoy (34:14): 71 next. And I've got about maybe 15 private Fridays on there as well. And I just did a really good one. That's kind of like I stepped into my voice the most and I just dissected the frozen franchise and how every veteran and really every dad, there's a hidden story with an us that you can relate to.

Stephen Colon (34:30): There you go. Fantastic. Well I appreciate you. For those of you who are wanting to check it out, we've got a special video portion coming at you here shortly. So until next time folks, see ya.

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