Oct. 12, 2020

8: Brain Programming & Pursuing FIRE with Frazer Kirkman

Welcome to the Mindful FIRE Podcast, where we explore living mindfully on the path to financial independence and beyond. I’m your host Adam Coelho and I’m glad you’re here.  Today we talk to my friend, Frazer Kirkman, a very interesting...


Welcome to the Mindful FIRE Podcast, where we explore living mindfully on the path to financial independence and beyond. I’m your host Adam Coelho and I’m glad you’re here. 

Today we talk to my friend, Frazer Kirkman, a very interesting character who I met teaching meditation at work. Frazer is now a software engineer but has an incredibly interesting story which includes him traveling the world teaching mindfulness and positive thinking for 10 years while living an incredibly minimalist lifestyle.   

In this episode Frazer and I dive into:

  • What “brain programming” is and why it’s so powerful
  • How we can use mindfulness to become aware of our current “programming” 
  • How we can choose a different “program” for our minds that will take our lives in a different direction
  • How “brain programming” can be applied to any area of our life
  • How Frazer traveled the world for 10 years teaching mindfulness and positive thinking
  • How Frazer lived on less than 10k per year
  • Frazer’s thoughts on the positives and negatives of being a minimalist
  • Frazer’s thoughts on the Financial Independence Retire Early movement 
  • How Frazer builds community in his life and has a ton of fun while spending almost no money
  • His thoughts on what it means to be and have enough
  • How we can be more intentionally loving to our partners and people we care about
  • Frazer’s top advice for people starting out with meditation and mindfulness
  • Frazer’s top advice for people pursuing financial independence

And so much more. I hope you enjoy my wonderful conversation with my friend Frazer Kirkman.

Full Show Notes at MindfulFIRE.org

Each Tuesday I release a guided meditation or inspiring interview on the topics of mindfulness and financial independence. Subscribe for future meditations and episodes!

Transcript

Adam Coelho: [00:00:00] Welcome to the mindful fire podcast, where we explore living mindfully on the path to financial independence and beyond on today's episode, I'm joined by my friend, Fraser Kirkman. Fraser is a very interesting character who I met teaching meditation at work some weeks he's running meditations every day across the company, and was almost a AZELLA for positive thinking and enlightenment for all his passion for people designing our lives.

Designing ourselves and training our minds directs his whole life in this episode, Fraser. And I go deep in discussing brain programming, how we can use the power of our minds to shape our thinking and feeling and to create the life that we've always dreamed of. We learn how Fraser first got interested in meditation and mindfulness back in high school after some family tragedies and how it changed his entire life and set him on a journey.

To spend over a decade, traveling the world in teaching these techniques. And we hear Fraser's thoughts on the good sides and the bad sides of being a minimalist and how some life experiences help them realize that he might have gone too far on the path of minimalism and how he is now leveraging his.

Skills as a software engineer to create abundance and financial independence in his life and Fraser share some specific practices of how we can apply brain programming to our life. And we hear Fraser's thoughts on the financial independence, retire early movement and where he thinks positive thinking and mindfulness intersect and Fraser sheriffs, his thoughts on what it means to feel and have enough.

And how we can change our relationship to life so that we can act from a place of enough. And cultivate the life that we want to live. Welcome to the mindful fire podcast. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:01:50] Thanks Adam. It's great to be here. I'd love to 

Adam Coelho: [00:01:53] start by inviting you to share with our audience a little bit about who you are and what you're doing, 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:01:59] who I am at the moment is I work as a software engineer.

Part of my. Passion is helping my coworkers to be self designers. I want them to be empowered to not just program computers, but be programming themselves. And I do that with the hope that our company can then help the weld design itself so that we can together designer happy. Loving kind world where everybody thrives and everybody has all the opportunities and all of the community to make their dream life.

Adam Coelho: [00:02:26] Very interesting. I'd love to hear a little bit about your life's history and how you ended up here now doing what you do. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:02:33] Yeah. You might've seen me hesitate when, and for a moment when you said, tell me who I am, because the way I am right now, it's very different to who I have been. So I guess my last story really is in my teens.

I was pretty unhappy. And after some family tragedies, I just looked at my life and society and I felt like something was missing so many people that are unhappy or just taking themselves down mental paths. Aren't helpful. And I really wanted to know how it is that we could do things better. And very soon after that I discovered two books.

One was the official guide to success. Which was all about training your brain, training your feelings to be exactly what you choose stepping out of whatever program you've been given and designing the program for yourself. And the other book was given to me by one of my teachers at school. He heard about the tragedies and he thought it would be helpful.

And I don't remember that. Exact book, but it was a book about mindfulness meditation that we can learn to watch our mind very carefully and still unhelpful thoughts and become present to however we choose to be in each moment. The book also had a compassion meditation, which drastically transformed me.

It was. But by the vision that we could have a world where everybody cares deeply for each other, and we're all driven by love. And so I did that meditation every day for a while and tried to embody that and felt what it is like to be guided by love and caring all the time. Yeah, I think those three pillars shaped what I became designing myself happiness.

And confidence and positivity being mindful to watch carefully how I actually am living and to be guided by love and kindness. So I just, I designed myself just thrive for my last couple of years of school and then same at university getting top of some of my subjects and like really great grades in basically all of them.

And I was running positivity clubs and on the board of a bunch of other clubs, and I had this vision that we could have a secular. Positive global movement, similar to how religions. So part of people's lives in the past, I wanted a movement where everybody felt devoted to the planet and to humanity and to helping each other thrive and wanting to create these centers across the world where people always knew where they could go to be cheered up.

They'd be coached to find like-minded people. And my plan was to just go and start teaching these classes and hope that a movement would grow around it. And I had friends and relatives. Saying, Hey, don't just go and teach classes. That's a super risky thing to do, but I always felt that well, if it doesn't work out, I can just go into tech later and then be able to look after myself pretty well.

Which is what's ended up happening. So yeah, I was just trying to contribute wherever I could. And looking back now, I wish I was a lot more strategic about how would I have. Achieve my larger goals faster, but yeah, so that's what I was doing. But then over time when I started to need some dentist work or something being so minimalist, it took its toll on me.

And I started to reflect that. Actually I wanted to. Have the resources, not just to look after myself, which I need to, but also to be able to have a bigger impact in the things that I'm doing. And yeah, the last five years I've been focusing on maximizing my earning, earning potential and focusing on my software career and at the same time, trying to be a positive impact.

On the two companies I've worked for. Yeah. So that's been my journey. Very cool. Cool. 

Adam Coelho: [00:05:48] So it sounds like this first was introduced to these ideas of positive thinking and designing your mind through being intentional and positive thinking that really came to you through those. Two books that you discovered or were given to you in high 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:06:04] school?

I became so excited about what other amazing ways there are to train our minds. So the book official guys success said visualize three times a day, intently and full of positive feelings who you want to be. So I trained myself to be confident to enjoy my classes at school, to have a great memory. My grades just went from close to fail to close to.

Perfect. I started getting invited to lots of parties, started dancing. I used to be really uncoordinated and suddenly I was a lot better at sport. Like I'd imagine being a lot better and train myself to be good. So that just made me feel way more confident and more fun, like redesigned who I was. And that was amazing to see over the course of some months.

Just doing this. So devoutly how much it changed me and the same thing with mindfulness being able to go deep into profound peace and just have a level of beautiful feelings that I never thought was possible. That was just so amazing to me. I also have to say that I was combining positive thinking with mindfulness.

So as I'd go to see,  some schools they'd be like, Oh, we're going to wrestle with our minds and try to let it still. But what was happening in myself, it was like, okay, I'm going to just imagine profound stillness. And so that's what my focus was. And that's. That's where I went. So I was lucky to have that combination to have really good results, but yeah, I wanted to go and explore all the different self-development practices out there and find the best of what's out there.

And I read hundreds of self-development books and went to all different courses, found little tips here and there also found a bunch of suggestions and ways of. Thinking that I explored and ultimately upon reflection realized that was less effective in my brain and just choosing who I wanted to be.

So yeah, bit by bit. I like ironed out a lot of the negative things I picked up and yeah, ultimately I think choosing who you want to be and visualizing that and practicing deep, positive mindfulness and cultivating beautiful feelings. They're the best practices of all the ones that have explored. So yeah, over the years I've taught a lot of different classes and tried to refine how I teach to really just empower seeing what you think and feel and just letting it go choosing what you want to think and feel.

A lot of people are like wrestling with their current program and trying to mold that into something better. I want people to be like, Hey, let's just put that to the side for a little bit and go, Hey, if I was going to start from scratch, how would I feel of being in this situation? It's just so much more empowering to design what you want.

Rather than wrestle with what you've 

Adam Coelho: [00:08:24] got. Yeah. Speaking of programming, you talked about their current program, right? Tell me a little bit about how you think about this brain programming and this idea of a current versus a desired program. Yeah, I 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:08:37] guess I should give some examples. Just for some people just hearing brain programs sound so abstract, it can be everything to how someone might say to themselves.

Oh, I'm shy. Or it could be an actual activity. Like when you walk into a party, how do you actually feel it can be the foods that you like or don't like, or it can be. What's your morning routine. Like every part of our behavior, every part of who we are it's a group of habit. Someone else could feel differently.

They could think differently about themselves. They can react differently to different situations. And this is like quirk in our mind that the current programs we have, they feel authentic. This is who I am now. This is how I am. I feels natural. But what I found from. Spending some time visualizing being something else.

If you just fill your mind with being a different way and just keep feeling that and make it strong very quickly, the other way starts to feel authentic. And the other thing that had the old thing that had its grips on you just doesn't have the grips anymore. And I've really encouraged people to try that at least a few times, because once you see that, Hey, this is who I am, or this is my issues.

It's not really true. It's super empowering. It gives you a whole different way of thinking about yourself. So giving people that. Space to think, who do you want to be? And then once you start to imagine who you want to be, whether it's something simple being more kind to the people around you or enjoying healthy food, more giving some time to imagine what that'd be like and imagine loving it.

It's just so empowering. I want to give any. Example of it. Like sometimes people like, Hey, how I am right now  is right. So I used to hate school cause school starts blah, blah, blah. But I thought about it and I was like, Hey, in my life, it'd be much better if I just loved it. If I just went in, I have to go anyway.

I may as well, just love it. So I visualize I'd go in and I'd be super interested. And that was like the office too, of what I was thinking at the time, like totally on code. I love school, but I just thought, Hey, this would be better. And just decided to imagine being that way. And it was just so beneficial.

The next five years were fun and I did a hundred times better rather than struggling. And, I did the same thing with liking health before. Food and disliking unhealthy food. They use the same thing to quit smoking, did the same thing to be like calm and patient in difficult situations.

Especially if you see a habit that feels really strong, but it's not really serving you. I want to encourage people to imagine being a different way. Super empowering. 

Adam Coelho: [00:10:56] Yeah. And so perhaps you can give an example of what the actual practice looks like. What am I sitting in my meditating?

Am I. Visualizing it to be true in my mind. What is it? What does it look like? So people can make it 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:11:10] real for themselves. So let's just say I wanted to be just more confident and happy in general. I found the easiest way to get started is to turn that into a statement, just so that like you have this anchor to people's current programs, they CA they often tell you, they're like, Oh, I'm shy in those situations, or I'm no good at that thing.

If you can phrase the new program is like a natural thing. You'd say I feel great at parties and I'm totally peaceful with everybody. So you come up with this statement, that's like the positive thing you want. And I say the positive thing you want, because if I'd been saying to myself, I'm not shy, I'm not shy.

Like my brain still practicing and thinking about shyness. So you want to create the statement that is creating exactly how you want to be. I feel confident and peaceful and happy. So I would, I wrote it out just once on a big card. I've seen other people that will ride it a lot of times.

I see other people set up a thing on their computer or their phone to flash it to themselves. Yeah. So I'd have this card and. Three times a day, I'd read the card, I'd say it a few times and start to meditate on it. So I feel confident and these, and I'd start to imagine what that would feel like. And so at the start I was like, I was super shy, so it was hard for the first few days.

So imagine what it'd be like to be confident, but I built it in my mind, what that would feel like. And then once you start feeling it, you're like, yeah, this is great. So then you can feel it more. So you're saying it to yourself, you're building up the feeling and then you're also practicing it in as many different ways in your mind.

As possible. So I'd imagine like jumping into a party on imagine being in a group conversation, just feeling really expressive, I'd go through and practice what it was  to live this thing. And then I'd also start to change my attitudes. I had some attitudes. The empowered being shy, like the reasons people are judgmental or the reasons I'm, I suck.

And as I'm doing positive thinking, I start to also create the perspectives and attitudes of why it's great to be confident and people love it. When you're at ease, it makes them feel at ease. So start with the statement, build the feeling, practice, how it is. And then let it filter through and fill out your attitudes and all the different parts of you.

And yeah, I said three times a day and make it Epic because everything I just said, it sounds big, but if you just do it regularly and just try to feel great when you do it, it happens more and it fills up your mind and it transforms who you are. 

Adam Coelho: [00:13:20] Yeah. So it sounds like you're making the statement right.

Crafting this. Statement that is positive. And then practicing, seeing that statement, being true, seeing yourself in various situations where it is true, practicing the feelings that you imagine yourself feeling in those situations and the thoughts that would associate the attitudes that would associate 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:13:40] with that statement.

People it's going to be easier to imagine the feeling first and for some people it's going to be easier to. Think about how the act first, but I really think you got to do both. It's got to feel the way you want to feel in this situation, and you've got to see how you're going to apply. I laughed 

Adam Coelho: [00:13:54] a little bit when you were talking about the importance of it being a positive statement, and not, I'm not shy because then you're thinking about being shy. And I was laughing because. It's like talking to my almost two year old son, right? Don't go in the street. Don't touch that. All he hears is go in the street, touch it, go into the street. And it's funny. And it's funny because the other day you said, when we were talking that you thought that we should treat our selves.

Like we're little babies and treat everyone we interact with. We would treat a little baby. I know you have a little one as well. And  maybe talk a little bit about that 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:14:32] for a moment. I want to clarify, I didn't say treat them my little babies. I said the same kind of care and sweetness that you'd put into a kid.

Give that to yourself. But I think he really clarified a point, like being careful with your words to little kids. Makes sense. And I think being careful with the West to ourself and the West to other adults. Oh, so it makes sense. Yeah. And 

Adam Coelho: [00:14:53] even in the time that we've known each other, and we've talked about this idea of these statements or the way I call them as affirmations.

And I was telling you that I have this affirmation for, I don't worry about doing things right or wrong. I just take action, which leads to learning progress and growth. And. I'd been saying that for years and it served me quite well, but at the same time, you helped me realize that I was saying, I don't worry about doing things right or wrong at the same time, I'm putting that in my mind, I'm creating the thoughts of worry of right.

And doing things right and wrong. And I've pulled that part out and focused on the, I take action, which leads to learning progress and growth, which are the things that I want. And I've seen a lot of action. I was procrastinating a lot on the last episode and I started practicing this idea and I took action.

I got it out there and I felt great about it. And these things just reinforce. And so it's really, I think, worth doubling back on this idea of the positive beliefs or thoughts or affirmations. That we want. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:15:57] And it's a pretty powerful, nuanced way of looking at ourselves to bring it back to mindfulness.

A lot of mindfulness classes might talk about the monkey mind and calming the monkey mind. And it's like the idea of calming the mind is wonderful. But similar to the affirmation you just shared saying, I don't worry. It's like you're activating the worry. And then thinking about overcoming it, it's like setting yourself up for this.

The struggle that hopefully you're going to succeed with, but you won't necessarily every time. And so when it comes to thinking about our own minds and our own practice, I also encourage people to notice whatever beliefs you have about your mind, that aren't helpful and try to create an approach to meditation.

That is easy. That is beautiful. What is Dave stillness? What is it like to watch thoughts that don't help you and just let him go straight away, deeply and completely 

Adam Coelho: [00:16:43] coming to me that the program that I have had my current programming is, and was around this idea of there's a right way to do things and I'm not doing it that way.

And so in this affirmation, I wanted to. Overcome that and change it. But I think what you're saying is just set that old programming aside and focus on the program that I want to be living and running in my mind, which is I just take action. I'm curious, I'm excited to learn. I'm excited to grow. And so focus on that and set the other program 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:17:16] aside.

Absolutely. I mentioned that there was so many ways that I transformed myself and I've continued to go with this practice through my life and. Making things better as I go. And sometimes I'll get stuck on something. And I see this sometimes where I've struggled with brain programming with it.

And basically every time that's happened, I noticed what I'm doing is I'm trying to have a program that's overcoming the problem. And I think so many people, even if they're not aware of where in programming, they're like struggling with themselves, not they're thinking about the problem and trying to be better.

And yeah, just to drop that and just. It's going, Hey, what would I lie? Just forget about that other thing. What would it feel like if I was just what I want to be? And if I look at the years, I've done that sometimes when I'm like, yeah, this would be awesome. And then if the thought creeps up of Oh yeah, it's overcoming the old thing.

If I let myself think more about, Hey, this thing's changing that old thing. I'm still giving mental space to that old thing. And it's been slower or harder the times where it's been the easiest and the best is when I just totally immerse myself in what it is I want. 

Adam Coelho: [00:18:15] That's very powerful. And I can see the impact that it's had in my life.

When we were talking about this idea of brain programming. I think what we're really talking about is neuroplasticity. So to some people, this might sound cool woo-hoo, but in reality, everything you think, everything you experience, all of those things are changing. The. Programming in your brain, new connections are being made.

Existing connections are being reinforced or are atrophy. So maybe talk a little bit about how this idea of neuroplasticity, this phenomenon of neuroplasticity functions with this brain programming. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:18:50] I'm not sure if I told you, but my degree was. Computer science and neuroscience, but even so our understanding of how the neuroscience applies to what ends up being our behaviors and our feelings.

It's still pretty lacking. Brains are amazingly complicated, but some of the things that could be the explanation for how this happens is there's a thing in our brain called long-term potentiation, which is summed up in pop psychology is what fires together, wires together. So if you take a little kid and they touch a fire and it hurts.

They, their body learns that fire and pain go together. If you take a clam shell and you touch it, it'll pull away automatically. But if you do it enough times without hurting it, it learns that the way you're touching it is not a problem. And so it changes it's instinctual reaction. Yeah. People want to look up long-term potentiation and see how the nerves have that system.

Go ahead. So if you imagine across your whole brain trillions of connections, And you could see how learning to have a certain habit. In some ways it's just a bunch of different things, wiring together. There's this feeling, there's this behavior, as in the way I move, there's this way of speaking. There's this way of thinking that all wire up in this context, I have this set of neuronal reactions, which turns into this set of emotions and behaviors.

So brain programming, as we said, it is wiring up to have a different set of reactions and feelings and thoughts in response to different stimuluses. And stimuluses, aren't just the things around us. Our own thought can stimulate certain things. People can make themselves scared thinking of what might happen.

So we're not just programming ourselves that we respond well to what's around us. We're also creating the architecture of our mind. What are the kinds of thoughts we have the lead to. More and more helpful thought, but yeah, there's other metaphors, other ways of approaching it. I love brain programming because as a software engineer, I see you changed some code and boom, the thing and behaves differently and visualizing something.

You might need to do it for a couple of weeks or a month. But if you just skip that little bit of time, you have just rewritten the program and then you behave differently. So I love that metaphor, but there's a lot of other metaphors, Adam, you said affirmations and some groups. They believe that our inner self is already awesome.

So you're just affirming who it is. I am confident. It's just letting your real confidence self out. I don't actually believe that. I think we're just all plastic and transformative, but if someone does believe that their inner self is awesome and they're just giving that some space to be great. I think that's a pretty good mental construct to be able to step into feeling confident in order to be able to step into whatever it is they're framing.

So affirmations is another way of approaching it. Some people think of it as like redecorating. Mental architecture as you're visualizing yourself being a different way, you're like painting onto your internal canvas. Some people think of it as mental architecture, like you're building different structures in your mind.

So whichever metaphor works for you, I think that's great. And hope anyone who's being mindful and they start to look at themselves through the day. You'll see all the different. Current mind programs you have, or current mental decoration you have, what is it that you're thinking and feeling and what are the habits you're doing all the time.

And you'll see that you're just running on programs all the time everywhere. And once you notice that and empower, Hey, what would it be like to imagine transforming any part of that quickly? Clean easily. It's a beautiful shift in perspective and transformative practice that you can take on. 

Adam Coelho: [00:22:09] Yeah, that's really powerful.

I know another metaphor that you are a big fan of is the idea of a garden, like cultivating a garden. And I have thought of this idea of neuroplasticity in the past as really a planting and watering of. You need to be very aware of the seeds that you're planting, ideally choosing the seeds that you're planting and then the watering of those seeds, because actually the same thing with the positive thoughts versus the more negative thoughts.

The, I am confident versus the, I am not shy the way I think about it is that's planting and watering seeds. And so if you are aware of which ones that you're paying attention, to which thoughts you're practicing, you're watering those. Seeds and that's what will blossom. So I think there are a lot of really good ways to think about 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:22:54] this.

I like to think of the seeds as the positive statements or negative statements, whatever statements we're focusing on. And the watering is like the imagining of the emotions and the practicing of how you're going to live it. And there's some groups who really focus on the emotional practice, being the most effective thing, because when you feel it's hardwired into your body, I actually think we also need to be visualizing how to actually do the habits.

But yeah, one thing I love about the metaphor of a garden is if I look at, when I first was planting the I'm confidency, I put it into my mind, but it took days before I could even actually imagine what it'd be like. And you put a seed under the ground. Nothing happens for a little while and then it starts to sprout and you're like, Oh, that's beautiful.

And then a little while later, Starts to flourish. And then a little while later you're getting free off of it. And so yeah, one thing about brain programming is if you just say affirmation yourself a few times, I've had some people be like I thought that a couple of times it hit me, bam. I was transformed, which is great.

But a lot of the time it takes the time to water it before you even see it coming out of the mind, I could have one part of myself imagining confident before, like consciously is really begin to be. So that part has to be big. Yeah. Do it three times a day. Do it wildly become a brain Ninja. I love 

Adam Coelho: [00:24:07] it.

And another thing I'll add, we obviously could talk about this all day, but I'll just speak about the power of not just creating our inner world. But also influencing what happens in our lives outside, many different areas of my life. I've practiced these thoughts and how I want to show up and then seeing the results in the world.

And so there was a time where I really needed to find a job and I was about to be out of a job if I didn't find a new one and visualizing myself. Finding opportunities taking action to create opportunities in my life, resulted in me doing things that I might not have otherwise done. If I had a different program and resulted in me finding many more opportunities and ultimately overcoming that challenge.

And so it's really powerful to realize that our brains are predictive in nature and we can program them too. Be ready to see things that we want to 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:25:01] see in our lives. I want to respond to that. And then pretty soon afterwards, I want to start looking at how we can apply this to fire the idea that you can visualize things in your external world and them happen.

There's some pretty good explanations for it. If you're. Thinking, you're going to find opportunities. Your brain's going to be noticing opportunities at other times. You might've just ignored. I've also had I go out to a big event and I tell myself that I'm just going to run into exactly the right people and have amazing conversations.

And often that happens. And there are a lot of people in the world who practice some kind of positive thinking or. Affirmation. And some of them have seen these results so much that they start to believe in some kind of magical thing like manifesting or people might've heard of the film, the secret. And sometimes the effect is just so powerful and surprising that I can understand.

Gen, why people think it's magical. I want to be very careful to say, I don't want to encourage people to believe in magical thinking, because I've also seen when people try to do that and they gamble their life away, or they're just hoping opportunities will come where they don't. I really want to emphasize that thinking of how you can be and how you're going to behave is.

Central. If you're going to visualize that you get along great with people or the people are kind to you awesome. It's, it'll transform you in a way that makes people kind to you. Sometimes those magical things might just be confirmation bias. The one time someone did some positive thinking around it and it happens and they're like, Whoa, what a miracle.

Yeah. I love exploring how magical we can be. And then being super skeptical of what is the actual explanation for that? But yeah. It's pretty wild that it can sometimes be so good that it's enough to trick millions of people into thinking that they're magical. I think, I've 

Adam Coelho: [00:26:39] Been on both sides of that equation, right?

 Always am talking about the universe made this happen, like magical. But, so I think there's like some benefit of trusting in the universe trusting that good things will happen. Expecting the things that I want to happen, but also I think there's tat brain programming that you're talking about, which is just training myself to see those things happening, to be, to visualize myself being a certain way, the type of, to showing up the way that someone would show up for these things to happen or in these situations.

I think that's equally important from a 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:27:12] Buddhist philosophy perspective. I have to interject as soon as you said, expecting good things to happen. Expectations. If you're not very careful can bring upset. So I would really more encourage people to just feel content and know that you're creating the best possibilities.

Yeah, no that you're working towards great things happening, but whenever someone's says expectation, I want to be really careful to say Hey, the best way to approach what's happening to you is to be present and accepting of what's happening and just learning how to optimize yourself. Yep. I think 

Adam Coelho: [00:27:46] that is really well said and brings up this idea of mindfulness.

Mindfulness is really a practice of seeing things as they are without judgment being with what is as it is. And so this kind of brings up this idea of enough, right? Being happy with how we are and acting from that place. Rather than from if only this, then I would be happy or then this would happen.

And  perhaps we can switch gears a little bit to talk about this idea of enough. What is enough? How can we feel enough and act from this place of enough? And perhaps we can talk about that in the context of financial independence 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:28:28] as well. So if we apply brain programming to fire and positive living, if someone's making themselves content.

And happy then there's a lot of expenses that become unnecessary. I am sure I have a lot more fun and feel a lot more fulfilled, having a good conversation with a friend than someone who goes through a night, out on the town and spends a bunch of money and playing sports and doing things that make me active and more alive.

It's. Either free or close to free. And it enriches me as opposed to like buying a Ferrari. So encouraging people to really imagine what it'd be like to feel content. Feel fulfilled and feel that you are emanating happiness and peace to the people around you so that your community has this contentment.

A lot of consumerism comes from wanting happiness and if people are content, they won't. Need that as much, I want to be careful there. Like consumerism people blame it on needing fulfillment. There are definitely some things like intoxicants or some extravagant things that people do to fulfill, to fill a gap.

But I also think a lot of it is it's just a habit. Once you're in the habit of Oh, I bought a thing and felt good. Like it's just a thing to do. So creating a different habit is also helpful. Like creating yourself that you feel happy and content, and that you create positive social experiences.

That's going to feel a lot of your social expenses and then being able to change your other spending expenses into activities that fulfill you or creating behaviors that fulfill you and your family and friends. You can see that some expenses are just not helpful. I also wanted to mention, if you take brain programming as like a superpower, I look at myself when I first started thinking about financial independence and, I said I was being a solder, but at the same time, I was also reading books about finance.

So the odd jobs I had here and there, I was teaching I was running festivals and parties. And I was also doing some software jobs here and there, every dollar I got, I saved and I read a finance book, quite young, while I was in trying to read every positive book I could. And it described how you should make a spreadsheet and putting in an amount of money and how much you're going to get a different interest rates the next year.

And then just slide that down to copy over a hundred years. And look at your X amount of money at 2%, for a hundred years, 3%, 7%. But don't just look at that, feel it. And I don't remember the exact number, but money invested well over decades is tens or hundreds times as valuable. So I did some mental tricks that I started to see every dollar as worth a hundred dollars.

Okay. Am I going to get a taxi to come home after a night of partying? That costs 10 bucks, but actually it cost my future self a thousand dollars. I'm definitely going to run home. I'd run home after going out partying and yeah. Letting yourself internalize different perspectives to help yourself have a perspective.

That's helpful. That's. Really great. I also want to be careful, like I'm sure there's sometimes I was more stingy than helpful. There's some expenses that speed you up that make you achieve your goals better. So I think every expense we look we take, you should ask yourself, is this helping me be more valuable?

Everything you buy should be going up in value. If something's going to be going down in value, it's a waste of money. If you have this perspective that everything that comes to you is going to continue to grow. Then you're bound. To be more financially stable than if you have money just leaking out of you.

So even though I was only learning, I was only earning a little bit of spending so much of my time, helping other people, what I got, I invested and compared to working in tech it, that, and ended up. Being pretty minuscule, but I definitely ended up with a lot more than I had ever earned. And I'm sure that comes from seeing the value of money and trading it precious.

Adam Coelho: [00:32:24] Yeah. It's funny, you mentioned that idea of seeing every dollar you spend as a hun, a hundred dollars for your future self. I used to think about it as $10 to my future self for $10 from retirement is what I would say. And I think that's a really helpful way of thinking about things, whatever, whether it's.

10 or a hundred doesn't really matter. But it's the idea that if I buy this thing now 30 years from now, I'm going to have forgotten about this thing. But if I invest this money 30 years from now, this hundred dollars thing will be worth a thousand or $10,000. You mentioned also that sometimes it wasn't as helpful.

I feel like I have gone. Too far on that. And I'm trying to find the balance between frugal and cheap.  And sometimes I err on the side of cheap and sometimes I feel good about, being frugal. How do you think 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:33:12] about that? That you can ask yourself if the thing you're going to buy is going to save you more time than it costs.

Is it going to help you earn more? It costs. And I want to humanize that a little bit. If it's going to. Sadly or family with more love and then your children or your partner are going to be able to thrive more. Think about the value of that. Is it going to be adding more value than 

Adam Coelho: [00:33:35] a car that's helpful?

And you mentioned flying things only that go up in value, not buying, not spending money on things that go down in value. And can you talk a little bit more about that and provide 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:33:45] some examples? So when I was young, I had decided property was the way to go. So I saved everything I could in the moment I could afford the smallest amount of a down payment.

I bought a place and I was sharing it with others. And the rent from the other people made it that I could afford to reach the mortgage. But then over the years, the rent went up and the mortgage went down and the. The property becomes net profitable. I don't want to advise people that properties the way to go, but there's definitely investments out there that are worth putting your money into.

Adam Coelho: [00:34:17] So that's an example of something that has gone up in value, but you also mentioned not spending money on things, right? Go down 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:34:24] in value. So for example, if you're going to get a car, there are people who buy fancy cars because they think it feels good. I think that's just a waste of money. Yeah. You need to take into account the expense.

Like things will be less efficient. That's got environmental impact and also impact on your wallet. But if the fancier car costs a hundred thousand dollars more, it's I doubt it's going to cost save you a hundred thousand dollars. In fuel, but in terms of just immediate response to what you put your money into property and investments, education investing in yourself and your intelligence, these are all things that I think we should love to put our money into.

And if you get something and you say what's that going to be worth soon from now? If the answer is it's going to be worth less, I would encourage finding a cheaper way of doing it for years when I was living on next to nothing. I just took great joy in being able to go into a store, buy a can of beans and some fruit go to the park and meditate on loving my food.

Like I'd learned about how to make a nutritionally balanced meal and for a couple of delis. Having a blissful, ecstatic experience that was completely nutritious. So yeah, food is an expense that we always need. It's essential to stay alive and you should definitely get your health requirements.

Wonderful. Cause you are like infinitely valuable, but yeah, once you've done that, I'd encourage you to figure out how to do that in a way that's more financially optimal. And once you figured it out, don't waste too much time on it. Learn some cheap. Where is that you love that it healthy and boom, that's a saving that will continue to go on forever 

Adam Coelho: [00:35:54] back to the idea of brain programming, right?

Programming yourself to love healthy food, not to Mead all of the fancy meals out and the fancy ingredients. All the time. Maybe sometimes this is a treat, but I think that's an area where I could improve. I love eating, I love eating unhealthy food mostly. And so I could use some brain programming 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:36:14] loving, healthy food.

I love 

Adam Coelho: [00:36:16] learning to love. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:36:18] My whole body feels alive, vibrant beliefs. I love it. Yeah. 

Adam Coelho: [00:36:22] Learning like focusing on the positive aspect. Aspects of loving to eat healthy food. And then when I do eat healthy, really savoring the feeling of feeling good and associating that with the healthy food, just to reinforce those beliefs, practice on that 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:36:36] besides the healthiness.

Cause I was actually just meaning I was focusing on loving the flavors and just enjoying the moment. But yeah, I had also programmed myself to love healthy food. So 

Adam Coelho: [00:36:47] let's talk a little bit more about that. That 10 years or so that you traveled around teaching these techniques to people. And I believe you were living on just about $10,000 or less a year.

Frazer Kirkman: [00:36:59] Is that what you told me? Yeah, so I traveled the world. I made my travels when I'd go from continent to continent, that would only happen every few years because flights are expensive and the environmental impact is pretty huge. And then as I'd move around yeah. I would go when someone would say someone would be in the city where I was teaching meditation and they'd say, Hey, I'm about to travel here and I'd love you to come and teach my community for a little while and I'd go with them so bit by bit.

I made my way across the world just to teaching. As I traveled and often I'd have an event. And The people hosting would have food. And yeah, my expenses were next to nothing. People would host me as I'd teach their friends and family. There. There's a wonderful website called couch surfing, which for people who want to host travelers, they value hearing amazing stories and sharing experiences together.

So I had to with guides, wherever I'd go, and I'd be able to share some positivity and kindness. When I go somewhere, I'd immediately be with a local. So then I'd be meeting locals and doing local activities with them. So I got to really see inside a lot of different cultures. It's a priceless experience.

And I just feel so blessed that I got to have these experiences without needing to. A lot of money. I don't think I could have even spent the money to have those experiences. 

Adam Coelho: [00:38:18] I think you're right. Yeah. That sounds pretty wonderful. And so you would just say, how did you find these people that were hosting network that wanted you to come and teach meditation to them or their group?

Frazer Kirkman: [00:38:29] Putting signs up in community centers. And then sometimes that would just blossom. That'd be just more and more events happening. People would invite me. People would bring their friends and I'd be on a flow for awhile. Some of them take me to a city where there'd be a bunch of people who'd want to do it with their network.

And then other times the flow would dry up and then I'd have to start again, start advertising again. And sometimes I go to a place. And unexpectedly hundreds of people would be coming to the classes and other times I'd go to a place and I'd be promoting it like wild. And very few people would come.

It was just really up in the air. But I had this aesthetic of promoting it in cheap ways. I never had any marketing. It was always just me making a poster or putting some things up on social media and looking back. I wish that I had the budget to make it look flashy and help people see the benefit that these classes would have.

Not just word of mouth. I also want to say that early on in my path, I thought to myself, Hey, it's super risky doing everything for free. And I hope that these communities will arise and we'll be making movies. It's to change. The world are running core courses for weld leaders who can easily afford to give us happy, fulfilling financial lives.

But if that doesn't come to fruition, I know I'll be able to fall back on the tech career. So as I'm saying, like going out and being selfless, I definitely want to say to people, Hey, it is super risky. If I hadn't had this option, like right now, things would have gotten a lot harder. Definitely wouldn't have had.

The option to give the opportunities to my children that I want to give them. We were talking about frugality and cheekness and selflessness versus looking after yourself. I would love for it for years. I wanted a world where everyone just gave, this like socialist utopia of just give love, give everyone just giving and loving, but not only do I think that's super risky because for everyone to become like that, it needs everyone to be like that.

So it's an impossible wish since I started to really embrace. Financial return and thinking, how could I deliver this in a way that people want to pay for most? It's made me think much more about how to deliver it in a way that will reach more people. So I want to encourage people in whatever they're doing, think about how to do it in a way that can thrive.

And yeah, I love that. I still want to help everyone around me. I wouldn't want people to become loving to everyone who's in their circles, but also encourage people to think, how can I take my dreams and passions and share them in a way that's also gonna help you thrive. So you share it in a way that people want the most.

Yeah, I think 

Adam Coelho: [00:40:59] that's really important. It goes back to what you were saying about, you might have been a little bit more strategic about how you brought this forth and yes, sometimes potentially. Getting paid or doing it in a way that perhaps, maybe for companies or large organizations or governments in ways that you can make some money might also empower others to bring it forth even more than you might be able to do it.

If you were just doing it in a grassroots way. So that's 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:41:25] pretty interesting. So right now, my current approach. I'm spending all my personal development time within my company, just offering it to help build the culture of the company, building an app for personal development. And that should come out soonish.

But my approach to coaching w outside of the company, Is I plan to do coaching with people who can definitely afford it. And my wife and I are looking at setting up officially a not for profit so that we can give these classes to underprivileged communities just to help them. Cause that's what I want to do.

And if someone can easily afford things that will help them thrive, I think it's totally okay to, for them to give you money. Like they're getting much more value out of it and giving to community. Communities where the financial value will come to them later. I think then it's beautiful to be able to just give to them and to receive kindness and love back.

Absolutely. 

Adam Coelho: [00:42:19] Yeah. I think that's a powerful model. So let's talk a little bit about the fire movement, right? This podcast really aims to look at the intersection between mindfulness. And financial independence retire early, living intentionally designing the life that you want to live. And that's what we've been talking about a lot so far.

We'd love to hear your thoughts on fire, financial independence 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:42:40] retire early. That's definitely the two things that stand at my most. Which I'm pretty sure everyone who's familiar with the fires or they're already aware of, if anyone is just tuning in new is creating a lifestyle where your expenses are low means whatever money you have is going to go so much further and maximizing your income or investing well to achieve complete financial independence.

You just want the growth of your money to be growing faster, what your expenditures are. So let's just say you have a certain amount of money and each year you'd be spending this much of it. Your runway for how long that money will last is that fraction of the money, that number of years. So if you can be happy and fulfilled spending half as much, your runway becomes twice as long, but that's not taking into account.

Investing this money and having this money grow. So if this money is growing and you're spending less, your runway gets longer and longer. And if the amount that your money is growing becomes bigger than what you're expending, then your runway becomes forever. So getting to that point of having enough invested and growing at faster than yours.

Spending gives you a point of total freedom and so encouraging people to really think about being super happy for ugly. And how do you maximize your income potential that putting those two leavers to me, it seemed to be the most important one. Yeah. I think it's 

Adam Coelho: [00:43:58] really powerful. The less your life costs and the happier you can be with either your life as it is, or perhaps your life even costing less.

The less money you need in the bank, which will be growing at a rate that can sustain that inexpensive lifestyle forever. And that really gives you options, right? It really gives you a lot of choice in how you spend your time. Both after you reached that point of financial independence where the growth of your money can sustain your lifestyle without you having to earn any additional money, but also even on the path to that point as well, because as you start to gain some momentum here, I find that you gain quite a bit of choice.

And you can start to take some risks or try some things that you can do without having to earn money, because you've got the money side figured out. You can start to try things and experiment with things to see if they're meaningful to you. If they're aligned with your purpose and things like that, we'd love to hear your thoughts on that freedom that once you got the money side figured out what is possible in terms of designing your life.

Both after you reached that point. And then again, also along the way. So 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:45:13] I was, at that point, I was traveling the world, doing whatever I felt driven to do, but then expense, surprise expenses came up. I wasn't thinking about medical expenses. I was. And healthy. And I also wanted to have the money to do that.

The projects I want to do for the world, or maybe someone doesn't have their own project, they want to do, but at some point they might have a cause they want to support. So I actually want to encourage people to also think about growing or earning as much as possible as a gift to your grandkids or as a gift to a cause you really care about or to empower yourself in surprises.

Yeah, from my absolutely minimus last out, I was already there in fire for four years, but life changes. So it's why I really want to emphasize it. But yeah, in terms of the freedom, I feel like I said, I spent a decade just traveling the world, just meeting people and going to old kinds of events. And Oh, another attitude I had that was.

Fire-related is I loved going to festivals, but I didn't want to be just a punter who paid for the ticket or anything. I wanted to go to I'd write to them and say, Hey, can I be on the team? And I'd come in and I'd run some classes there, or I'd help like design and decorate stages, or I'd be at the gate, like welcoming people and making people feel excited for the festival.

So I had like VIP tickets. So loads of events that I thought were great, you spend a bit of time helping and you I only really did the roles that I thought would be super fun, like where I got to engage with a lot of people, you've got to be creative and make something awesome. And then once you've done that bit of work, you're then part of this amazing festival and you get like free entry.

So I probably went to like tens of thousands of dollars worth of festivals and cost me nothing. So that was, it costs me time. Someone's cynical. What I'm saying could say, I spent a lot of time on that, but I did things that I loved. I enjoyed it. And as you travel the world, you can go and explore all different kinds of cultures.

And like I said, if you're in a different part of the world, you could go to a fancy restaurant there too. I see the experience of that pilot world, or you could go and meet some locals and see what their local food is like and feel what it's like to be in a family. There's a whole world to explore.

And it's up to you to find the things that you think will be enriching and beautiful. And I think most of the time, the most enriching, beautiful things, don't have to cost money 

Adam Coelho: [00:47:25] to hear a little bit about your thoughts on how being on the path and how being intentional about your money. Can really create some of this freedom and choice now.

I feel like I've come to realize recently that it's not out there. It's not, when I reach five that I can start living this life. It's right now, there's no reason that I can't do. The things that I want to do right now. So I'd love to hear your thoughts about how you think about that and how people can think about that as they approach financial 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:47:56] industry.

If you were to write your bucket list of everything you ever want to do, and then order it, buy the cheapest things. I think that they are ridiculous. Number of. Things you could do right now, that would make you really happy that the expense is minimal. So yeah. Designing yourself your life to do beautiful things every day, enriches you and makes you feel great.

If you want to do something really special with your spouse, spend $3 on a picnic basket and pick a beautiful park. I'm sure many people would. Feel more touched and special, you taking them somewhere lovely and see that you spend a little bit of time on them then taking them to a fancy restaurant. I know my wife, when we first met, she spent a lot more money.

And then when she saw my lifestyle, she suddenly loved having picnics. With her friends and she loved creating events and activities that were minimally expensive. So if you have friends who are very active and do fun things, go and explore and see what they do and encourage your friends to get involved.

So Fraser, it 

Adam Coelho: [00:48:56] sounds like you've come up with some ways to have quite a bit of fun without spending much money. Can you tell 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:49:01] me a little bit about that? One of my favorite things. Has been intentionally creating positive events like picnics or going out in nature, but actually running meditations or running laughter clubs or running positive thinking clubs, or think tanks or going to events where people give presentations about their biggest passions, things where you can help each other be better.

Awesome. So I mentioned going to presentation nights. There's some great things in the Bay that I love to go to, but I've personally run a lot of meditations or laughter sessions. And not only is it good, cause it's like fun or you feel this positive feeling, but when you do it regularly, you can not only have your friends becoming more positive, but they'll bring more people who are interested in mindfulness.

Or interested in growing as a person in the kind of ways you like to grow. So it builds community beyond just the friends you have right now, you get to meet a lot of like-minded people and bring them together regularly. And so I've really loved that as an activity and the community that comes along with it.

And, if I think about where I lived before I was in the States, We had it a couple hundred people a few, maybe 10 or 20 regulars and a couple of hundred who would come every now and then to these events. And there was a real sense of Hey, this was the positive awesomeness group. And it was just great.

Whenever we saw anyone from there out and about, and we'd all get together pretty regularly and we'd have these positive events. But we'd also have parties of the community and I still get messages from people, it's a few years since I left there that had been a huge, positive impact on their life and transform how they see things.

So not only is it great at time, but it's this ongoing positive thing that stays with you and stays with other people. So that's super nice. So yeah, I definitely encourage everybody, even if you haven't guided meditations before just try it, create a space and say, Hey, let's. Let's take a moment of peace or let's talk about some awesome thing that you're passionate about and it only gets better and better, the more 

Adam Coelho: [00:51:01] you do it.

And so in terms of like practically setting this up, would you say just mention it to a couple of friends and tell them they can invite their friends and just throw a time on the calendar to get together and. And do it, or, practically, how would you suggest setting 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:51:15] that up different things at different times in my life and different parts of the world, just before I came here, like the big community, I mentioned, we put a lot of events up on social media and it was, I think it was mostly friends bringing friends.

So we also had social media events so that they could invite their friends and sometimes people would invite people and we didn't even know the connection. So that was nice. Sometimes we'd do it in parks. Like when the weather was good and sometimes we'd do it in living rooms that people in the community would take turns hosting them.

We also had it in like a doctor's clinic. He had a big whole room and he wanted to have positive, healthy events for the community. So just the more you do it, the more opportunities come up. It was other times where I was doing a lot of things at a community center and I put out posters. We, I think social media events.

An ongoing word of mouth is when it's worked best. Actually in Australia, I got on the news a bunch and on radio shows because I'd done things regularly. And I did them at venues where people were connected with the local media. So that can be good too. Once you've been doing it for awhile, do it in a place where you're reaching out to the vocal community and then they'll reach out for you.

Adam Coelho: [00:52:22] Very cool. And I'm really curious what. Is a laughter club or a laughter meditation. You've mentioned that a few times. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:52:29] Yeah. When sitting in deep stillness, one time, I just was noticing different parts of my mind. And somehow I just found happiness and was suddenly filled with joy. And I just followed that thread in my consciousness.

It just got into more and more happiness and became wildly ecstatic. I've since read a lot of meditation books. I mentioned it, but I hadn't read about it at the time. So I think it's just something that can happen in meditation. But I also think if you've been reading about it a bunch and thinking about it, it's more likely to arise in your meditation, but yeah, that was a lot of deep meditation that took me there.

So I try to take people there in a way that's faster. So we'll take a relaxing breath and then we'll take an energizing breath and then we'll take a. Modeling breath. And then everyone just sees how well we're all smiling, all of a sudden, and maybe one or two people will giggle and then it creates this chain reaction of giggling.

And then we'd take an even happier breath and an even happier breath. So sometimes I keep it really meditative and with just feeling joy. And other times I make people like, like laugh at each other, which might look a little bit. Silly, but when you've been meditating on joy, it's suddenly this kickstart into more joy and your brain realizes, Hey, wow.

We can just make us really happy. And we've got a bunch of different like games that get people into more happiness and yeah, you just get into a frenzy of happiness for half an hour, or I think my record was three and a half hours. That was in Norway. And I said to the group, somehow the way I set it up or the dynamic of the group makes the really different.

Every time, that time I just took us into meditation and somehow set it up to every happy sound you hear, we'll just make you 10 times happier. I think that was one person who had a particularly hilarious laugh. And so we were just in hysterics and every time the group calmed down, they would just explode with laughter again, which would kick everybody off.

And yeah, for three and a half hours, we were all just in hysterics. That was. That was pretty awesome. Sounds great. Love guiding. Laughter. Meditation is one of my favorite things to do. I can't wait 

to 

Adam Coelho: [00:54:26] join one of your laughter meditation's maybe at work one of these 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:54:29] days. Yeah. I've run a bunch at work.

Oh yeah. Yeah. It was fun. Nice. And I guess another part of living a dream life is being happy. Thoroughly, encouraged people to level up your meditation practice. And not just in terms of stillness and mindfulness, meditate on love and kindness, meditate on happiness. And then what it's like to be a hundred times happier.

And then a million times happier. There's a funny story I had, there was one chapter in my life where I wasn't meditating as much. And I was walking the streets of Melbourne Australia, and I saw a Buddhist monks walking the street and I walked out to him and I'm like, what are you doing here? There's no temple anywhere.

And he's Oh, I've just got this little one house. A little apartment where I'm building a community and I say, Oh, that's great. And then he probably thought, I didn't know anything about meditation. He's just moved from another country to a totally different culture into a neighborhood where there's no meditators.

So I had to convince him that I knew about Buddhism and that's why I came up and speak to him. Because at first he's Oh yes, I could teach you about meditation. I'm like, Oh no, I love it. I love it. It's great. And then he looks at me and he said, okay, how much do you meditate every day? And I said to him At the moment, it's probably only 20 minutes a day and he looks me in the right, in the eyes.

It's time to level up. You must meditate one hour a day. Just, it was so unexpected for him to say that it's stuck with me for years. More time in deep meditation. Amazing things can happen, but also doing positive brain training on happiness. Diagnosed see yourself, feeling fun, see yourself, feeling confident, see yourself, having the energy to go out and do things that you love and explore new activities.

Yeah. Create an, a rich enriching life for yourself and the people you care about. Yeah. I also want to say, like some people could hear that and be like, Oh, that sounds like work. If that's how you respond to that. Spend some time imagining that you just feel this drive to make your life enriching.

Create brain programming goes through all the levels like it's turtles, all the ways down. So you like wherever you see you transforming yourself would make things easier and happier, make it that whatever you are working on, that you love it. That it's happy that it's invigorating program yourself, that you are.

It's fountain of joy and fun and positivity. Or if those words don't resonate with you, program yourself to be whatever you think is optimal, whatever you think would be an awesome person. I love this question of Hey, if I was like emperor of the world, what would I get everybody to do? But what would I program everyone to be like?

And when you imagine that that's true. Yeah. That's very 

Adam Coelho: [00:56:58] interesting. And there's no reason that. We can start right now. 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:57:03] I love positive thinking. Cause every time I talk about it, I've then leveled up my own positive thinking. I just inspired myself as cheesy as that, every time I got a meditation I've gone deeper and every now and then the way I describe it, it's just hits me more.

So the next time I meditate on it, I feel it more powerfully. Every time I talk about positive thinking, it like makes me emphasize the key points that make it better. So yeah, I practice this stuff and every little bit that helps you try and share it. With people get friends like sunga major friends that want to grow together mentally.

And as you talk about it and try and help each other thrive, it'll help you thrive so much more. 

Adam Coelho: [00:57:40] Absolutely. I've already seen that in our short friendship together so far it's made a big impact for me and hopefully has helped you as well. So let's switch gears. I want to ask you a question about, I've been exploring this idea of what is enough.

And feeling enough and acting from this place of sufficiency. And so we'd love to hear your thoughts on how I might practice stealing enough and reprogramming my mind to feel an act from a place of enough in all areas of my life. And so taking this concept of brain programming, we'd love to hear your thoughts on how, what that practice might look like.

For me, 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:58:19] it's an abstract concept being enough or not enough is not a reality. It's a label that you're putting over things. So if feeling enough is an antidote to someone else making you feel not enough, maybe I would step out of that and say how do you actually want to feel? And if feeling enough, it actually means something really vivid for you.

Perhaps it's a feeling of having resources to give or. Maybe it means it's a way you described feeling content and joyful, right? In this moment, I would translate it from the abstract word to the specific things it means for you. And then each one of those things that you think of, if it means feeling emotionally generous and spend some time affirming, I am emotionally generous.

I'd really need to unpack what it means for you in specific things. I'd 

Adam Coelho: [00:59:05] say, like in the realm of. Of money, right? In the realm of time, in the realm of producing creativity, right? Doing enough at work, doing enough on my side projects, the podcasts, I'm not feeling this sense of, I should be doing more.

If only I was doing more. If only when I get to five, then I can live. Then I can be happy. That's I feel that quite a bit. That's where the cheapness comes from. Even though I have more money than I had 10 years ago, five years ago, it's been more in my mind, because I'm on this path to financial independence.

So I think about it more and it produces a little bit of scarcity or maybe 

Frazer Kirkman: [00:59:46] a lot of scarcity. So I want to be careful, there was one chapter of my life. I found myself in a very wealthy town and I was running the classes and had Royals and very upper-class P a lot of people coming to my classes with a lot of resources.

And I started to feel like, Hey, I've made it pretty soon. This is going to turn around. And my dream of helping super wealthy people and me being completely supported is. It's going to happen. And so I suddenly started spending a lot more money on making amazing food for everyone who was coming and like really expensive, like gourmet food.

And my runway dropped so much in those few months just because I started to feel like, Hey everything's fine now. And so in terms of financially feeling enough, One thing I've heard for people is to think about what is your fund budget, give yourself that amount, maybe even in a different account.

And you're able to spend all of that. If it is a matter of wanting to be able to spend more. I personally just love being content and happy. So the expenses I have are always things I think will really enrich. Our lives. So if there are things, will enrich, you like really enrich you. And you're hesitant to spend it, spend some time and ask yourself, okay, is it going to be fun and helpful for a few weeks?

And then go into the shelf? If not, then maybe just forget about that idea. But if it's something that you see is like actually going to be fulfilling and helpful, then you can weigh up for yourself. Not emotionally, just do the numbers. The amount of money now, how much more interest am I going to get?

If I buy it later? Does it make sense to buy it now? And if you see, Hey, this is actually really valuable, then I think you'll decide to buy it. It sounded like your question was actually a few different fields. Do you do you have enough to follow your dreams? I don't want to. Encourage people.

Hey, just because you're close to financially able to cruise, drop your career and follow your dream, like that's risky. Maybe set yourself to do your side project and do some experiments. If I start offering this service, do people want it? And when that grows big enough, that it. Replaces, it can replace your other job or you close to that.

Take that little late. Big leaps are risky and you can hear stories of people who do it and it worked out, but you don't hear all the stories of the people where it failed. I think that makes a lot 

Adam Coelho: [01:02:02] of sense. The idea of experimenting with new ideas or new projects now without needing to be at financial independence, I think is really important.

And this is something that I'm trying to do now, one through the podcast, right? To see, do I like podcasting talking to people who teach mindfulness because I am very passionate about mindfulness. Would I want to do that full time. So let me talk to people who are doing that and all the while I'm building skills along the way.

And I don't need to worry about making money with the podcast, with any of these projects at the moment. And so I can approach them from a different place, or it's not this striving, it's more of a learning and growing and contributing, and I've found that to be really valuable. But I also find that I need to.

Come back to the why. When I'm feeling that, Oh, I'm not doing enough. I didn't get my podcast out on time. Last time I need to remind myself like, Hey, like no, one's waiting for it. I don't have any pressure to do it. I'm doing this. For me, so I can learn and grow and potentially help some people with some of these ideas that we've been discussing on the show today and in other episodes.

Frazer Kirkman: [01:03:13] So Adam, while I do want to encourage your contentment, there are probably some people waiting for it. And in the future, there'll be more people waiting for it. That's 

Adam Coelho: [01:03:20] true. That's true. Don't add the pressure 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:03:23] Fraser. Yeah, but I, like I said, I don't want to say that in a way. Pressure. But yeah, you are appreciated.

And perhaps if you turn that into, from pressure into just enjoying that, you're doing something that people like. 

Adam Coelho: [01:03:32] Yeah. It's an opportunity, not an obligation. 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:03:35] Yeah. I also, I want to come back to, you asked about enough and part of it was like, do I have enough money or do I have the skills?

Another thing you're saying is. Feeling like you're achieving enough. That's a completely different issue. There, it's a big pot of artificial pressure on yourself. So for that, I just want to come back to mindfulness and being in the present moment, there's a really great YouTube channel called CGP gray.

He makes a lot of cartoons with good philosophy and he has two videos. One is seven ways to maximize misery. And part of that is about like setting goals that you are going to have to struggle for all the time and expectations, careful with the brain programming. You just do that. I think you should take a minute just to reflect when you said that's my jam and imagine that's over.

And then he has another video called your themes and he takes a different approach to goal setting and says, Hey, have a time where this chapter of my life is about this. And I'm going to love doing this thing in this chapter. So yeah, that's just like for the thought people to look at another point, this, the thought I want to share around that in terms of being in the moment, being present is feeling pressure and feeling expectations.

Doesn't just happen. That's you getting caught up in a certain set of thoughts and feelings and running around with that. If you just come into this present moment, there's no pressure. It's just right now. And if you continue to just have that practice or feeling present and enjoying what you're doing, then that is the feeling you have present and working on what you're doing.

So these expectations of achieving enough I don't think they serve anybody. So just being present and doing what you can do is. 

Adam Coelho: [01:05:11] That's was very helpful. Yeah. I guess I had another question for you that kind of has come up. It's not related to this, but you mentioned one time that you were meditating on being super loving towards your wife and how it changed.

Everything about how you were showing up in your interactions with her and just in the way that you were being in your life. We'd love to hear you talk a little bit about how someone, how I can practice 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:05:38] that towards my wife. I don't remember that exact moment because. It's something I now do regularly.

The first thing that comes to mind is when we wrote our wedding vows, we wrote them in a way that we thought this is the way we want to be together to keep being awesome. And for the first nine months after we got married, we would say every single one of them to each other every day. And. We still say them regularly to each other.

And it's  I'm about to love you forever about a care for you forever and vow to run towards you forever. So like anytime there's any sort of disagreement that one about running towards each other, we just know that we're going to work through it and be awesome together. So having weather, whether you've got wedding vows or whether you're in a relationship and you set some goals or how you'd like the relationship to be revisiting them together is really nice.

And in terms of meditating on that just for yourself, I think there's so many ways that you can shape your mind and your experience and your feelings. So whatever I'm saying now, it's just like one way of doing it. But if you get yourself into a state of peace and then start thinking how lovely you'd like your time to be together, just spend some time in that feeling.

We've mentioned compassion, meditation or happiness, meditation, or peacefulness meditation. Like you focus on the thing and just go more into it and more into it. You can do the same thing with like, how lovely do you want it to be? How many partner? And then you've got to reflect it back on yourself.

You don't have to just feeling that lovely feelings. Nice. But if you reflected back on yourself, like how would I like to express that loveliness? How do I want that to overflow like the express warmly, but also when there's any moments of like difference of opinion or when the communication's not automatically wonderful, what do you want to step into and how do you want to be assertive?

And loving at the same time, how do you want to make a space for them to feel fully empowered, to express themselves even when you disagree? Totally. Like how do you make that super lovely. And, I can put that idea out there, but it's people taking the time to think. Feel it and imagine how you're going to do it.

That's where you train into yourself. And not only does it help you express more lovingly, but you've practiced, like appreciating them and feeling happy and feeling lovely when you practice that. That's how you're going to feel. And that's how you're going to experience. It makes a ton 

Adam Coelho: [01:07:59] of sense. Yeah. It's what we've been talking about this whole time.

But practicing the thoughts of how you want to show up in your life. Really makes a difference, right? It just becomes the automatic way that your mind operates after a while. Just like when you are learning something like playing guitar, right? At first it's very awkward and uncomfortable and the more you do it, the smoother it becomes and the more automatic it becomes.

And so it's a good reminder that 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:08:24] you get to a point where you can start being creative, like riffing on new things. Okay. What if I pull that out a bit of infinite love right now and mix in some sweetness. Oh, yeah. Oh, I heard that philosophy a little while ago. How would I apply that straight away?

Your brain feels more confident and playing with these positive ideas when you practice implementing them really strongly and quickly. 

Adam Coelho: [01:08:44] Very cool. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on that. That's really helpful. Anything else you'd like to share 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:08:49] before we wrap up? So I mentioned that we share our bows and I also mentioned.

Meditating for yourself, but actively meditating together can be really awesome, whether it's like in a hug and it's just a one minute meditation about how lovely you'd want to feel, or whether you sit together and set an intention together. And that can be responding to the moment like, Hey, right now we need a lot more calm.

So let's guide calmness together, or it could be just in general, like we're full of love and joy together. You can also use it. Let's say you're going to host a party together. How do you want to. Be together hosting or you're maybe you're going to buy a house together, or one of you is going for an interview, like motivating each other to be amazing, supporting each other to be amazing in different circumstances.

And also be really good. Just feeling like you're there for each other. It's really bonding because 

Adam Coelho: [01:09:40] it makes a lot of sense. 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:09:41] Yeah. Very good. Thank you. The thought about the meditating together, you can't, it might not be into meditation at all, so you can phrase it in different ways. Hey, what about if in this hug we just take a couple of breaths and just feel good together.

And everyone listening here is really creative. I'm sure you can come up with ways to make a moment that's intentional together and find a way that you both like it and you can ask them, what do they want to cultivate? What's important to them, give them a chance to, for them to describe what they think will enrich your relationship and for you to just receive it and feel it fully.

It doesn't have to be meditation. It's just making that. Space together to really hear each other and feel each other sounds 

Adam Coelho: [01:10:19] like you're saying, meet them where they're at. If they're not into meditation, it doesn't have to be called meditation. Doesn't have to be a 20 minute meditate sitting meditation.

It can just be taking a moment to cultivate some way of being together. Some intention of how you'd want to be in relation to each other in relation to whatever situation is arising in your life. Kind of meeting them where they are. 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:10:42] I also mentioned a meditative hug. It can also be when you're more and more intimate with our little baby, if he's upset, I'm just giving him lots of kisses.

We love you. We love you. We love you. And it just makes him laugh. And you could do the same thing with your partners. While you're being really close, Make it really intentional and really lovely. 

Adam Coelho: [01:10:59] Okay. So let's switch gears to what I call the mindful fire final for the first question is what is something or someone you are incredibly grateful 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:11:09] for?

Two things come to mind. One is that book, the official guide to success. By Tom Hopkins. Just the idea that everything is a habit that we drill into us too. So you may as well choose what you drill into yourself. And the other thing that I'm grateful for, I said, I looked across the world and saw that we were missing something and I asked myself, what should it be instead?

And soon afterwards, I had these amazing visions just here. Amy. And I dunno if that's the power of my subconscious answering a question I gave it, or if it was soul, the big, beautiful bits of culture that I'd been exposed to across humanity, that my brain put them together when I needed to. Or however you can explain it I'm just grateful that when I wanted something really special and inspiring that it came to 

Adam Coelho: [01:11:51] me.

That's great. Thanks for sharing that. The second question is what advice would you give to someone getting started with meditation and mindfulness? 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:12:00] There's a lot of different schools and a lot of different subtle approaches as well as different descriptions of what's going to happen. Look at all of them as autosuggestion.

If someone's telling you about a monkey mind, don't give that any attention. If someone's talking to you about awareness and peace, focus on that, make your approach to you. Training your mind, mental training, every thought you give attention to every bit of the practice you give attention to do that.

There are schools who try to make it super complex. And sometimes that draws people in because they need to read more to understand the complexity. If you spent the same time, just focusing on peace or focusing on how you want to be, you'd get much better results. 

Adam Coelho: [01:12:40] The next question is what piece of advice would you give to someone on their path to financial independence?

Frazer Kirkman: [01:12:47] Really value and love resources, money, and things care for them and really value your moments. Make yourself happy, loving, and craft a mind state that is content and loves life. So that you're fulfilled. I don't think financial independence should just be a personal thing. It's you contributing to the world in a way that.

Beautiful. So you enrich your life, your enrich those around you and the resources that come your way. You treat them with respect and make the most of them. And you work out how to contribute to the world the most as possible so that you get the most resources to do even more good with. That's 

Adam Coelho: [01:13:25] great.

The last question is how can people connect with you online and find more about what you're working on? 

Frazer Kirkman: [01:13:30] I wish I had a good answer to that. I'm still working on what my online presence should be. Like. I have a website, razor, k.net. I have some things on SoundCloud, some meditations on YouTube that I recorded 10 years ago when I was still there.

Spiritual Saturday. Yeah. You could get in touch with me on social media and YouTube and SoundCloud and just. Yeah, just going to get better. There'll be more things there every time. 

Adam Coelho: [01:13:53] Perfect. So I'll include those links in the show notes so people can find those. Thank you so much for, is there for being here today with me on the mindful fire pot?

Frazer Kirkman: [01:14:00] Yes. Thank you. Pleasure Adam. It's great to share. I also love how I feel more inspired. Me too. Thanks so much. Have a wonderful laugh, 

Adam Coelho: [01:14:07] everybody. Thanks so much for joining me today on the mindful fire podcast. If you got value from today's episode, please hit subscribe on the podcast player. You're listening to this on or on YouTube.

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This will help more people find the message of mindfulness and financial independence. And if you'd like to join our email list and be notified each time I release a new episode, please do so@mindfulfire.org. Thanks so much. And we'll catch you next time. .