June 17, 2022

E334: Surviving and thriving with MJ Vogel | CPTSD and Trauma Coach

In this episode, I sit with my friend Mallisa J Vogel, a high-performance coach, author, and speaker who has arguably one of the craziest stories I've ever heard in my life.
See show notes at: https://www.thinkunbrokenpodcast.com/e334-surviving-and-thriving-with-mj-vogel-cptsd-and-trauma-coach/#show-notes

Apple Podcasts podcast player badge
Spotify podcast player badge
YouTube Channel podcast player badge
Google Podcasts podcast player badge
Overcast podcast player badge
Castro podcast player badge
RSS Feed podcast player badge
Amazon Music podcast player badge
Stitcher podcast player badge
Goodpods podcast player badge

In this episode, I sit with my friend Mallisa J Vogel, a high-performance coach, author, and speaker who has arguably one of the craziest stories I've ever heard in my life.

I don't even want to spoil it for you right now. Still, I'm going to tell you this like sitting here, being able to have this conversation today was like, I just had so many holy shits like, I cannot believe that happened to you moments that I'm speechless, I'll let you guys know I am fucking do this for a living. I'm always talking, coaching, and doing podcasts, and I just was like, wow, if you can overcome that – my audience, the Unbroken Nation, I need you to hear this as a reminder that no matter what we come from and what we've been through or where it is that we are today that we can still create and build the life that we want to have tomorrow, despite near death, despite poverty and homelessness, despite not being educated, despite surgeries and medical intervention, despite all of the chaos of the world, all the things that we may go through, all of the hurt, the suffering, the pain that we can still create and build the life that we want to have.

This conversation was beautiful and powerful. I hope today you will hear this and feel inspired and motivated and find the drive and willingness to persevere through the struggle, through the parts of life that feel insurmountable, and to say no fuck that, I'm going to be the hero of my own story.

Let's get into the show!

Learn more about Mallisa J Vogel at: https://www.mjvogelinspire.com/

Learn more about Think Unbroken and Pre-Order my new book: Unbroken Man. Plus, learn more about the free coaching and other mental health programs. Click here: https://linktr.ee/michaelunbroken

Support the Podcast: Become a listed sponsor!

Follow me on Instagram @MichaelUnbroken

Learn more about coaching at https://coaching.thinkunbroken.com

Get your FREE copy of my #1 Best-Selling Book Think Unbroken: https://book.thinkunbroken.com/


Michael: Hey! What's up, Unbroken Nation! Hope that you're doing well wherever you are in the world today. I'm very excited to be back with you with another episode with my friend Malissa J Vogel, who is an author, high performance coach and speaker. Malissa, my friend, what is happening in your world today?

Mallisa: What is up, good morning! Pleasure to be on here Michael, thank you so much and same as always for today, getting after it, you know, working, grinding every day, so it's been a crazy day but it's gonna keep going.

Michael: I love it. You know, for those who don't know this is Saturday morning, we're getting it. You know, the thing I always try to tell people is like you're building your life, you gotta to build your life every single day and so matter respect to you for being here with me today. For those who don't know you, tell us a little bit about your backstory and how you got to where you are today?

Mallisa: Yeah. I've got a pretty unique backstory. So, I came from extreme poverty neither one of my parents at the time had graduated high school, there was a lot of challenges, a lot of substances and stuff like that and I was self-educator from the age nine up the last thing that I was formally taught my mom's homeschooling was kinda multiplied fractions and then from there on out from the age nine to about fourteen, fifteen, I just educated myself with a six year old GD book and was failing terribly I trying to do that and eventually it just kinda hit a pivotal moment where I realized okay, like, this world is not going to be handed to me. I've got an opportunity to make something great out of this or I could be a victim and that realization came from a really close life for death situation in which I had overdose gone diet pills on a two-week long past, that moment that I realized okay, I need to make something out of this okay, I'm still alive, what am I going to do and what am I going to do with? What I been through in my life? Because I'm not the only person that's been through adversity. So, that was one of the big pivotal moments that changed everything, that was one of the big pivotal moments in which I realized my purpose, my mission statement that helped me get through everything and work up to four jobs put myself through college while still having consistent migraines that we couldn't figure out to be able to build my first business and then get twelve surgeries back to back including brain surgery while sustaining myself as much as possible economically with the business that I built after graduating from college. So, it's been a very difficult and long journey but how I did it and how I got to where I'm out today is having an implementation, systems, building a new version of myself and having a mission that is bigger than I am to chase my potential regardless to adversities.

Michael: Yeah. I love that and I actually resonate with you about that a lot. I know and I don't know each other greatly but I grew up deeply impoverished homeless as a kid, stealing food to survive, drug addict alcoholic parents, didn't graduate high school, I mean like we're speaking the same language over here and I think unfortunately it's more common than we care to admit and you have this entire society in this culture of people who are growing up in the ways that we grow up and I fear MJ, that people look at people like us and then go, oh, they know something I don't know, they're special. And I always think to myself, I'm really not, I'm just like unbelievably fucking determined to like create the life that I wanna have. As you were going through all of this in your youth trying to figure out what's next, trying to figure out how to educate yourself, build your life like what was it in those moments that you used as leverage to continue to persevere?

Mallisa: So, that was in my mind a mission statement. So, I'm a big record on fan and I saw that you guys were just adding a bit together but I remember correctly. One of my favorite quotes by him is he says, creativity follows commitment. So, the big thing that I followed, the big thing that was that leverage was the mission statement. So, when I did that overdose, I did not intentionally try to take it that far, was this more of an appetite if it happens to happens, I don't really care and then live flashes in front of your eyes like, that sounds absorbent cliche shape but it really does and I started realizing and I starting asking myself, okay, what is my obituary going to say? If I follow through with this and this is the end of my legacy what does is that tell other people that have been through something that they should do as well, if somebody has been in the same situation, if somebody else has been told by whoever it may be that their life is pointless, that they're useless, that they're gonna die a alone or whatever it may be and having their life threatened, if I follow through with that action what does that mean? And that I slowly gave this realization that the legacy that I would be leaving if I opted out of life that way would be one telling people they should believe the words that are suppressing them. So, at that moment, I beg God power whatever you wanna call it and I said, you got let me look through this, I promise you, I'm gonna be the best version of myself, for myself, I’m gonna show people that they can do anything that they put their minds to regardless to other people's opinions limitations or impressions and that hurt people hurt people and that doesn't make them right because that's the problem when it comes to adversity a lot of people think that they're the only ones hurting and they make it so everybody else hurts, not understanding that everybody's hurting in order to break through that cycle you have to make a different decision or yourself. So, every single time that life would hit me when I literally five months later got hit by a truck and broke my collarbone and dislocated my shoulder and worked left hand it for a decade. I remembered that mission table when I got diagnosed with the incur neurological disorder, I tapped into that mission statement when I was going and working literally two jobs well while writing my bike to as mini, there was two GD classes that I could take at night before I wouldn't take my test that's what I would tap into, that in my mind is the biggest anchor that a person could have in life that they can pull into that will allow them to get the creativity that they need to move their life forward.

Michael: Yeah, and I feel that, and that’s my history too, right? I felt so stuck at one point you know looking at my life and my mid-twenties, complete rock bottom could not had a worse experience of those years other than if I would've killed somebody like, I really think about that because of the chaos of the life I was living and at one point I literally I went looked in the mirror and I made a decision, I thought to myself like this is what it has to be because if not I'm going to die like, I knew it was on the way but between the drugs the alcohol the crazy experiences that I had like death was inevitable and I think that what happened is I distinctly remember being like, alright, I don't know what it is that I'm supposed to do but I feel like I'm meant to do something great, right? As a kid, I always thought to myself, I wanna be fucking Jay-Z or the food fighters like that's all I like, I wanted to be a rock star and it's was like, why am I not doing this? Why am I not living into this? And to your point those thoughts that other people embedded us about who we should be, those words, those ideas. For people who are hearing this and they're like man, I get this but I'm like stuck right here, my life feels like it's not going to go forward, I cannot seem to get any momentum, where do you start in that process?

Mallisa: Nine times out of ten somebody that doesn't get started or chase their goals and dream that's not about the goal or the dream it's not about the adversities, it's not about the setbacks, it's nine times out of ten absorbents like everything's mental. And all of us do it to some extent where we don't think we're worthy, where we think that we're not deserving of it. So, for people that have that I would encourage them to go through and write down just the mental things that they're saying to themselves and then ask themselves is this true or is it just a little bit true or is it completely bullshit? Because nine times out of ten scientifically the human brain can only perceive one percent of reality, so that means that you may be sitting there perceiving something that you think is absorbent true but it's not, it also means that you may just be focusing on one thing, one bs thing that somebody told you and you can't see everything else that's happening in the world, other opportunities, other possibilities of the dreams, of their visions and until you go through and debunk what has been told to you. And that takes a lot of raw real analyzation as to where you're at where you've been and who you are. So, I would tell people take a list of the things that you're saying to yourself, ask yourself if they're true, get accountable with yourself if they are and changing it if you don't like it, ask if they're a little bit true or if they're completely bullshit and then dismiss them and make sure that you prove yourself that they're not prove, it takes you out in your emotions to put you into an analytical mindset and that's where transformation happens.

Michael: Yeah. I love that. I was listening to Jordan Peterson recently and he said the best thing you can do is go sit on your bed in silence and come to meaning about the things in the areas in your life and which you need to work atbecause those are the things that need your attention but you have to be willing to face the truth. You know, I've played the victim, I've seen thousands of people that have coached around the world, play the victim and it's really truly not until that moment of acknowledgement that it comes to pass that you're able to step into who you truly are but even with this MJ, I fear that people will hear this and they'll write this down, they'll look at it and instead of doing something they'll dive deeper into victimhood.

Mallisa: Yeah. Well, I would just tell people ask themselves what benefit do you get on a victim hood? Like, we're all a victim of something, every single person is a victim of something but what benefit do you get a maintaining being a victim that's because something happened to you and you were a victim of a circumstance, does not mean that you need to maintain being a victim moving forward. So, it's a matter of making a decision are you going to be a victim of it or you gonna make something out of it and in my mind that's the definition of success that's a responsibility is on this planet and just to take what you've been through and trying to make something beautiful for the next generation, your neighbor, your cousin, whoever it may be, what are you going to make out of what you been through? Are you going to make more hurt or by being a victim or are you're gonna make something great out of it? You can't have both. So, I think it comes down to an intentional and an understanding that there is a time in a place to be a victim, there is. Like, for instance when I got diagnosed the neurological condition after working for jobs including myself your college and building a business, I had a pity party for about a year, maybe a year and a half they said hey, we can't fix this, we can only do brain surgery, it's treatment for you and most likely you're probably going to have to get more and also people die spontaneously from this and we're terrified to operate on you because there was a nineteen year overall, we just took the surgery on with a brand new baby that did not make it. So, I was a victim in that circumstance yes, and I had to give myself that time to really process my emotions and cope with the versus just sitting there trying to put a band aid over bullet not coping with those emotions however that victim hood timeframe is way lasted a lot of times and a lot of times we do not make a decision to make something out of it and we maintain being hurt and therefore unconsciously bleeding on everybody else and hurting them.

Michael: I'm sitting with that because it brings to mind these moments and time and my own experience and many people, I've seen in which like you have this for lack of a better way to phrase that it's like coming to Jesus’ moment, right? We're like oh, shit hold on a second, what is happening here. For you coming through that like what did that look like I would love if you had paint a picture of really kind of the next phase in this journey for you going from that mindset of victim into what was next because there's that transition period, right? And I look at mine it was three fucking years for me. I'd love for you to talk about what that was like in the shift that happened in the journey for you?

Mallisa: Yes. Let's see, so more backstory on this just to give the audience some more contacts. At the age of twenty-five that was when I quit my last freaking night job, I work up four jobs putting myself through college while building a business because that was the only way I can do it. I'm a big fan of NF and he has a song called ‘options’ and it says, I gotta make it or make it these are the options. And I finally thought that I made it and literally three months later after buying the dream house, the dream car which I came from a very humble beginning so that was not like a gigantic car or a gigantic house but I finally thought that I made it three months later, I was interviewing neuro surgeons, couldn't remember how to get home, I’m right handed and I couldn't open my hand all the way because of nerve damage, my right foot was literally curling up and I was walking with a lip on it and I can barely remember how to spell my name. And what they told me is you have Chiari malformation and for the audience is probably not super familiar about that because it's very rare and also, they are just starting to finally be able to properly treat it, there's about five neuro specialists in the United States that truly, truly specialize it or at least back then that was the case. Anyways, that means your brain doesn't a physically fit in your skull and it's beating into your skull every single time your heartbeat beats. And I had a big, big pity part felt like a victim, I felt like I was cursed, I felt like everything was bullshit, I felt like everything that I worked for literally meant nothing, I literally felt like was just getting laughed at by the universe, there was like screw you Malissa, you're cursed. And I felt like that for a long time, I felt like that basically for the majority of twenty fifteen but every single day I would try to get up and I would try to act like, I didn't feel that way, I tried to go back to who I used to be, I tried to sit there and me like okay, I'm just gonna pretend this didn't happen and that just makes it worse every single time because I wasn't coping with the emotions and the fact that I felt like I was not fulfilling my potential, I wasn't working through and understanding that all of these surgeries because I had to get twelve of them back to back, all of these surgeries were painful but the most pain thing was knowing that I could die spontaneously and I gave up on my dreams, I wasn't confronting any of these emotions. And I wasn't until I started really, really going through and being like okay, who you used to be doesn't exist anymore? You need to build the new version of yourself, that was the only pivotal moment that I could do something because every single morning I'd get up and try to act like, I was who I used to be and then I would black out and be bedridden for about two to three days because I was not able to even be up for more three hours at a time. So, that's what that transition looked like, it came to accepting that it came to seeing other people with the same condition I had dying spontaneously that would give every single damn, second that they possibly could to have the three hours I had with my ability to stand up upright and what was I going to do with it, was going to just flush you down the drain to be a victim or was it gonna make something out of it? And that acceptance in space going through the emotions and seeing that there are other people going through the same thing I was that was the big transformation in which I realized, okay, what am I gonna do with this diversity? What does it mean? I can dictate what it means and everybody does.

Michael: I wanna go into that, that's absolutely incredible. I have that thought every single day where it's like, yes, we go through these incredibly painful and tumultuous experiences, they build us, they are a part of our life whether we like it or not most should I don't like it, right? But you know creates who you are and I think about this every day like you know, my mother cut my finger off when I was four years old and I think, I looked down at my hand, I go alright, I can allow this to dictate why I cannot succeed or I can choose to allow this to as many people will say turn my pain into purpose. What I think has happened in my life is I will look at people and I will say, I recognize how much we have in common and some of us we're going to make a decision to transform and some we are not. I think the hard reality about this, you know, coaching thousands of people, hundreds of podcasts, writing all these books, all the things I've done is I look at this and I go there's still that small percentage of people who they're never going to heed any of this, they'll never take it, they'll never do anything but my thought and thing that I challenge myself to every day is how do you give them that anyway. So, you know, because there are people who have been diagnosed with what you have and the moment, they find out they give up and I get it again in my mouth, I have given up, I lived that life, what do you say to people who are like, I just give up, I'm done?

Mallisa: Well, I would just tell people that somebody's watching them and I don't mean that creepy way, what I mean by that is somebody's watching you and you were their reason for not giving up, there's a lot of people that DM me regularly right now and they tell me oh, my god and I don't mean to brag by myself, I'm very humbled and I'm very honored every time someone DM’s me this, they're like, you're my hero, when I tell them is one, I'm very humbled and honored to hear that but you're someone else's hero too, somebody's watching you, what are your decisions telling them because that's the thing like what I had to do is I had a man up long enough whatever and is you call it but I had to realize that I was not fulfilling the mission statement that I came up with when I was fourteen years old, I thought it was and an outsider perspective I was but I was bitch now, I was feeling sorry for myself, I was holding back on the dreams that I wanted to do and driving it going a brain surgery realizing that I did not fulfill that commitment was more painful than them opening up the back part of my skull and shaving off the lab scar tissue because I knew I pitched out. So, I had to look in the mirror and realize, okay, people are watching me but most importantly, I'm watching me and I'm not fulfilling my commitment and my promise that I wanted to do with my life, it all comes down to self-accountability and realization that none of this is just about you. Now, we can't change everybody else's mind, we can't make them want to continue to fight however I would say that you could help them with finding that fight within themselves and nine times out of ten, I had a lot of people stick a finger in my face and tell me, I couldn't do something every single time that I could possibly think about and top of my head is because somebody else told them that it wasn't possible. And I go when I break that limitation not in a way of haha, I told you so and I'm the best person in the world by any means, I don't get about that, I go and I break that limitation that's puts on me so that they can get out of the mental prison that somebody put they themselves in and put them in, so, that's contagious, that limitation and that negativity is can contagious if we can break through the adversity and model something great that's contagious as well.

Michael: Yeah. I love what you said there are people watching and you have no idea the impact that you're making, right? And sometimes that's literally just like showing up like, being in the room, doing the thing you said that you were going to do. You know, your kids are watching, your friends are watching, your neighbors or your community, your church it's like everybody sees and it may not seem that way. We live in a weird society where people are like oh, I'm gonna go cry on Instagram and get attention and I'm like but why? Why do you do? What do you want? What is the impact that you wanna have? Why are you not living fully? How do you create this life that you wanna have and have the willingness to go for it? Because you know, I think you'll agree with this like the struggle is guaranteed but the success is not, right? And you look at this and you go through this journey and you know for those listening can't see it, I've read every book that's behind you right now and can't hurt me as one that comes to mind and I think I see and I read that book and you pardon of me is like, David Goggins is fucking crazy but I think to myself there's something so potent in all the information laid out there whether it's 10X role or your book or you know five set Mel’s book, and it's like there's so much information that we can take from all these amazing people in the world that we can use to our advantage, to be able to go and be that person of substance, be that leader, be the ideal of the idea of the person that you thought you could be and I want people to hear no one understand like, you know, you're not alone in this shit, we're all struggling like, I will never sit him and be like, I don't struggle to be the best version of myself every day but I think that's part of the game like it seems to me that without the struggle and suffering of creating yourself you'll never be you.

Mallisa: Yeah, for sure. I wanna piggyback and what you said there, so, David Goggins where I always get this backwards on my camera but I freaking read that book probably at least twelve times, every single year I do a mental top niche challenge and what that is basically I do something that scared a living shit out of myself this has became an annual challenge of mind and I think our first year started was in twenty seventeen. And I do that a lot of it inspired by David Goggins book and what I realized by reading that book was multiple things but one of them is this, after I had all of those surgeries back to back so, I have twelve of them back to back after I started doing a habit a week and implementing that so, I could build a new version of myself because I was backing out every three hours, I still lost everything economically, I had to give my car up for reposition after all of that and I was so damn just so you guys understand, maybe watching this, you be like, oh, well you know she has no idea what it's like to be broke, I know what it's like to sleep on the floor with rats and mice, I know what like to sleep of a closet, also as an adult I know what it's like to call the bank and say hey, I need you to come and get my car and they show up to come and get it and they call me and they say, Malissa where is it at? And I go, well, it's right there, going no it's not well I got towed due to unpaid parking tickets, I know what that's like and what I realized after all of that is I lost everything not just because of the circumstance, I lost everything economically because I became a victim and I let my mindset get weak, I was always focused on the end destination, I no longer was realizing or embracing all the shit that I went through and I was younger with sleeping in the floor with the rats or all the things that I saw or being self-educated, I lost all of that and I got soft and that's what I love about Goggins is he helps people with understanding that we need to maintain being mentally strong and prepared. I think the saying goes those strong menbuild weak people that make hard times or whatever that may be like that, I don't remember exactly how it goes but that's the truth. And our lives it's like a freaking roller coaster, where we accomplish something and then we get weak and then we lose it all and then we do it over and over again, I love that book because of that. And also, to touch on what you said, I remember one of the podcasts that he did where he said that a publisher told him that nobody is going to resonate with that book and what he said is everybody would resonate with that book. You can throw a rocket somebody and you can hit them and they will have a similar background or similar feeling as you do if you are willing to break yourself down low enough to actually be real and not do all this fake bullshit you see on social media where everyone acts like their life is perfect.

Michael: Yeah, totally. I'm sitting, I’m smirking here because I'm like you and I are twins, I'm like you're the closest person to my mindset said I've met in a very, very long time. And you know, it's funny too maybe it's fucking serendipity I've had repo cars, I called bank they were like we can't find your car, I grew up sleeping with rats and roaches crawling all over me like, I wish and I pray to God like other people don't have to experience that but it's to say like, I agree with you there is something about you have to take this radical control over your life and challenge yourself in ways that you never have if you ever want to tap into the potential that you actually do have. And my greatest fear is that on my deathbed, I will die with regret because I was scared to do something and the truth is like that has driven me to be fucking fearless to say, I'm gonna do it anyway. My greatest superpower is the willingness to be publicly embarrassed because I don't tell what people think about me and I wish that were people would adapt and adopt that into their lives because the thing that is going to drive you to success is following your dreams, it looks your dream might be like you wanna be a world championship like, I don't know what the fuck your dream is but it's takes to go for it. And like you've said dreams multiple times in this conversation and I'm just wondering like, what are your dreams? What is your future look like MJ?

Mallisa: So, I wanna be the female Tony Robbins is one thing that I say regularly. I want to be able to help people economically with maintaining and creating massive success and wealth. And I've done that I worked with some of the top fortune five hundred companies in the world I've consulted them and I'm also doing four mental tough challenges this year every year I do wanna there's shit out of me obviously personally inspired by the can't hurt me book. The one of the four that I'm doing this year is I am doing a zero to six figure business from around zero inspired by undercover billionaire obviously my big brick her fan and I watched that and I was like, I can love this, I'm gonna do it. I wanna show people that they can't create financial success and happiness and abundance out of every single aspect of their life if they want to and I also wanna inspire people to get rid of the shame that they feel about what they've been through. So, I think that's what holds a lot of people back is they try to sweep all this crap underneath the rug and act like their life is perfect and they have shame with things that they should not have shame, so it reduces the vulnerability, authenticity and their impact on other people. So, those are some of my goals and dreams but big thing that I want is I want when I die I wanna have no regrets. People wonder why it works so damn hard with this condition even after brain surgery I can die spontaneously it's not really high statistically possible but it's higher than you know, you didn't have it potentially because you have brainstem suppression, so basically your brain stem controls everything in your body and you put pressure on that you can have a spontaneous stroke or whatever it may be it happens pretty consistently, I've seen a lot of my friends that have this condition that just dies spontaneously. One of them that was that big pivotal moment for me was a seventeen-year-old gal when I was having poopy pants to quote David Goggins and feeling sorry for myself, she was seventeen-year-old girl, graduating high school early had the same surgery I did was feeling off something was wrong, was couple years later I believe after surgery and she graduated and then didn't wake up the next day. So, that is very real for all of us chronic illness or not it doesn't matter and I just realized, okay, like, we can all die tomorrow, what are we gonna do? What do we want that legacy to be? So, I wanna die with no regrets because I know what it feels like to know you could die when I got all those damn surgeries that could kill me when I was doing them some of them I was a awake during like when I die I don't wanna have any damn regrets, I do not want to feel that I let myself down, I like God towards power and my dreams down, that all, that feeling, that regret is the most painful damn thing I've ever felt in my life.

Michael: Yeah. I agree and I think about that literally every single day and  it drives me in ways in which I think you'll appreciate people be like, you’re workaholic, no I'm not, not even close, I just know I want and I don't wanna settle and I wanna build this life of impact because ultimately my goal and Think Unbroken goal is to end generational trauma in my lifetime through education and information so that kids don't have stories like ours because you look at the impact of the chaos of our past and how it can like completely cripple people and I've been there and then looking at it and going wow, there are so much to overcome here mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually, sexually, financially, all the ways that you have to rebuild yourself and I'm like, well shit if we can mitigate that fucking risk and I can make myself obsolete then that's a huge win. I wanna come back to because I think it's important and it might get lost in this and so I wanna rewind a moment, you talked about the importance of showing people that they can be financially successful, why does that matter?

Mallisa: A lot of people are sat there and say money doesn't make you happy. A lot of people will say money is not everything and I will say that it doesn't make you happy but it sure helps. I've been broken and I can guarantee that doesn't make you fucking happy either. So, what happened is I had the brain surgery in twenty fifteen and then I was booked for a second race surgery where they caught or remove the back part of my brain and as it lasted ditch effort, I found a gentleman and one of the top hospitals in the United States that figured out in one of the top neuro surgeons they collaborated together, figured out that may not be the right surgery for you and it probably will kill you. So, what they did is they did eleven additional surgeries to avoid a second brain surgery during one of those surgeries included me lane face down as they injected blood and blue into my spinal cord without any pain medication nothing and the reason why they did that is because I had to tell them when I got physically and unbearable because if it didn't get physically unbearable it didn't work and your high risk per meningitis and if it got past physically and unbearable you may be paralyzed or potentially die and I had multiple of those surgeries. Some here in Idaho with people that were not as intense or sophisticated in the matter and I think about four or five if I remember correctly, at the specialist hospital and I remember coming back that took all the money we had, we overdue every single checking account we had to pay for those. I remember coming back and things were still off, things were still wrong and I thought I was leaking spinal fluid which is the fluid that your brain floats in at c three in my neck and they wanted to try to do about two to three more surgeries on me to try to see how much they could fix things, maybe not up here, maybe lower because if they operated here, how of very, very high chance of death paralysis. And I remembered booking those procedures because I wanted to try them and canceling them not because solely, I was overwhelmed of all the procedures even though it was very much exhausting but because I couldn't afford them and I don't want anybody to ever have to make that decision for themselves, for a loved one, whatever it may be, if it's your health in your life or the roof over your head that does not make happiness. Poverty does not make happiness; you cannot not change the world if you could not take care of yourself and making that decision to solely based on finances really sucked. And a couple years later and I don't regret this and I don't hate myself for this but I think it was probably like the next year or I don't remember exactly when because it's all blur but I had my childhood cat that I love dearly that was there if they're made through all my challenges but I was a kid, she about fourteen, fifteen years old, she got cancer and it was in a mass and it was a basically an unprofitable area however I dumped literally probably about ten thousand dollars and got myself into so much debt to try to save that cat life and the last procedure they could have done for, it was about four thousand dollars and I couldn't do it, I didn't have the opportunity to even try to do it, that decision was made for me because of economics and I want people to be able to make the decisions that are best for their loved ones and for their life not based on economics but based on opportunity and that is created by financial awareness, of financial competence. You cannot sit there and blame money for bullshit terrible people making bad choices with money. Money is not the evil; people may be really screwed up. I was watching Jordan Peterson video and he said, there gonna be a bunch of older that are doing cocaine and doing nothing but terrible crack with their money but they're gonna die quickly anyways but the people that are creating greatness with it, maybe they should have more so they can create more greatness. Money is not the problem and once people make that separation and understand that, that's when they can better solve their own problems and make decisions that are best for their lives.

Michael: Yeah, I mean shit this is heavy, right? And I'm sitting here like thinking myself I've had just earlier at the beginning of this year I had surgery and I was like thank God, I've put myself in a position to be financially aware enough to be prepared for that moment and looking at that and coming from completely in debt, almost fifty thousand dollars, car repo, homelessness, not being able to pay. There was one point in my mid-twenties where I had to borrow money from my girlfriend to pay the rent for the apartment we lived in together, right? Like, I know that feeling, I know that place. What I'm curious about is if you had the similar experience as me where what I had to do was realize like I have this massive money trauma and what had to do is educate myself and become literate on money and go through that pacing of learning about investing in myself first and building out the rest of the wealth that not only I have now but I will hopefully have them in future well, what does that process been like for you?

Mallisa: That's been a very long process coming from poverty and then also just coming from the mindset that sometimes society puts on you. A lot of times people that don't understand money will demonized it and there's a lot of peer pressure, there's a lot of pressure against wealth beating and building, like I said really screwed up people economically but for me that process just came up to hey, people may be screwed up with the economics that they're doing that are maybe very terrible people like and I say this very boldly, very transparent and hopefully one day that he sees it, I am not a big fan of Mark Zuckerberg, I'm not a fan of that guy one of my goals is to get big enough that I could tell him to his face that I think he's done terrible crap with his money, he has a benefit of the world, I don't think he's came up with one original idea like there are people that are like that for sure however that's not the majority of them and sitting there and just hating on the entire economic system is not going to solve anything, you have to realize okay, money's not the problem people can be the problem what are you gonna do about it? Don't surround yourself with that people, be a different person, great something great with it like you get to decide same thing with the adversities what this means, what does this mean and I've made that decision in which all of that stuff meant that I not have money without being a hypocrite and that is the wrong answer for what it means. We get to decide what we're gonna do however you cannot fix something if you are in a sinking ship. So, it's took a really long process and I'll quote Grant Cardone again because I'm the big fan of his. I remember the first time that I listened to him because I was on one of the habits, I did my rebuilding my life I did a have it a week for two years that's kinda I rebuilt everything as I was just like hey, I can't fix everything one night, overnight I'm black out, I'm gonna fix one thing and I’ll focus on it and then the next week I'm gonna add another thing. Habit by habit, incremental changes to build the new version of myself. And one of the habits I had, I was not watching the news and I would only listen to positive motivational stuff no music, just positive motivational videos and one came on and Grant Cardone and at this time I just lost the house, it's probably about a year after we lost the house made about six months and we moved into an apartment, I had to get a lounge chair in the bottom or a sleeper chair that turned into basically a mattress like a ton because I didn't know if I'd be able to physically make it up the stairs to go to bed, that's how challenged I was don't physically. And I remember, I was still making my own freaking pickles, I was making my own everything, I was cutting nothing for coupons and I was all at scarcity mode, all in budget mode that was my approach to finances and then I started listening to some of Grant Cardone advice where you started of talking about okay, financial freedom need to make money you can't just save yourself into the financial freedom, you need to be able to understand money is a gift it is a tool for you to change the world, you can't fix anything when you're broke. And that was when I started conquering and challenging my belief system on money and like I said earlier writing down the thoughts that you think and auditing them to see if they're true and if they create the intentional that you want them to.

Michael: I love that. I had Tim Storey on recently and Tim said, you know, money is your friend, actually I'm really happy we've gone this direction this conversation because I haven't really had this kind of conversation on the show. Money is not evil like all shit lies that our parents told us growing up, the communities that we lived in who would spout off this idea capitalism is the worst like no, that is the society we live in, that's like lining jinja and being like, you know, you can't stack the pieces on top of each other like, this is rule, like this is the game that we are playing and I want people to become more financially literate, I mean obviously Grant is a great resource for that and so are amazing other people as well. And I think the greatest thing that I've discovered over the years is the power of recognizing the truth that if you invest in yourself, you will gain confidence over time to be able to be like I know my value in the world.People so scared about this idea that they can have abundance and wealth that they cripple themselves before they even get to the starting line. You've already decided, you've already said Hey, I can't and that me is the most fucking dangerous thing about financial freedom. And look I'll clear, I'm not a billionaire yet, I wonder like it's a huge part of my mission and the goal of this company, I wanna build this brand and I say this aloud, I wanna build this into a twenty five million dollar year company in the next ten years, why? Because I recognize like a fifty-dollar donation is amazing but let's keep it real, in this world with this inflation in the cost of goods, fifty dollars doesn't do shit anymore, how does Think Unbroken be able to donate fifty million dollars, right? And I want people to hear this and not like you and I were not in this place where we're like where these greedy like give me all the money, fucking people, you wouldn't be on my show if you were that way, right? But were people trying to look at and make meaning of the world who've been through the depths like it is way better to have security in your finances than to be impoverished and say fuck the people who have money. And I used to see that guy like, I wanna this out because I'm very curious where we go with the last few minutes here I used to be the guy and I'd like fuck rich people, working for a fortune ten company like the irony it and coming to this place in life we're realizing like the truth is you must be willing to ask for what you're worth but I think people… let me rephrase this I wanna ask you this question before, how do you get to the place of knowing your worth financially?

Mallisa: That's a tough question man, oh damn. So, I would say, when it comes to finances and knowing your worth you have to figure out how to disassociate any shame that you have in your life and also audit the self-belief system that you have which you've been through and what you're saying to yourself and then the economics will fall into play. I would also say, that you have to be in the right vehicle that helps you with supporting your work. You cannot sit there and beg for a vehicle whether that's a nine to five job where they just pay minimum wage and you work super hard, they give you extra shit and there's no opportunity to move up or maybe it's in the wrong vehicle in regards to the profession that you're trying to chase, whatever it may be. But once you have that realization and once you know what you stand for what you know what your mission is it's a hell of a lot easier to start asking for your worth. And that's something I still struggle with here and there because I want everyone to be happy and I wanna help everybody. The last thing that I will say is, you not knowing your worth often does not help somebody find theirs and chase theirs. So, what I mean by that is when it comes to coaching for instance is that's one of my three businesses when it comes to coaching, me sitting there and giving them the course for free that doesn't help them because they don't have skin in the name, they didn't invest anything, they didn't have to go and get the money to do that work and invest in themselves and know their worth. So, a lot of the times it comes down to understanding that trying to help everybody for free doesn't serve you and it doesn't serve them and that by you honoring your work you help other people on their own and transform their lives. So, a lot of the times it turns down to say no, it's hey, this is my pricing, so that they invest in themselves enough to transform their own lives.

Michael: Yeah, and I think on the flip of that too it's investing in yourself that would change your life. I remember my first coach I sold everything in my house to get, no bullshit and you have to ask yourself what are you willing to do to have the life that you want to have and if the answer is anything less than no excuses it just results, you're not gonna get it. And my fear for people is that they're going to settle and die with regrets and I hope that they will go and listen to this episode five thousand fucking times until it's buried in their brain but we can only just hope. Malissa, my friend before I ask you my last question, can you tell everyone where they can find you?

Mallisa: Sure. Guys can follow me @mjvogelinspireand you guys can find me on every social media platform. You check on my book on amazon and my reports and all of that stuff there but I just really wanna see people transforming their own lives and that's creating a trickle-down effect with the impact and our legacy and changing humanity by transforming our own lives in our community. So, DM me, I'd love to support you guys however I can.

Michael: I love it and of course we'll put the links in the show notes for the Unbroken Nation. MJ my friend, my last question for you what does it mean to you to be unbroken?

Mallisa: In my mind when it comes to being unbroken that is an understanding that all of us are broken in some stuff some way, some fashion, something has heard us something as cracked us but we're going to make a conscious decision to grab those pieces and build them and build ourselves in a way that makes something beautiful out of them, that makes it so society can't break you, that makes us so adversities can't break you, that means that you can't break you when you build you consciously embracing the things that may have shattered you temporarily and building something great with them, in my mind that makes us so you're unbroken.

Michael: Beautifully, said my friend, thank you very much for being here. Unbroken Nation, thank you for listening.

Please like, subscribe, comment, share.

Tell a friend.

And Until Next Time.

My friends, Be Unbroken.

I'll see you.

Mallisa J VogelProfile Photo

Mallisa J Vogel

Author, best seller, thought leader, high performance coach

MJ Vogel’s life journey trademark is persistence, resilience, and courage. From sleeping on a mice-infested kitchen floor as a child, to later surviving – and thriving – through 12 excruciating surgeries, she has learned the true meaning of courage, facing your challenges head-on, and the keys to developing a powerful mindset built around the principles of mastering the habits of success. She masterfully moves her clients and mastermind groups through her powerful, life-changing programs, techniques, and trainings. She is intense on stage, and speaks with a raw, captivating, electric persona that has captivated audiences around the country.

Her keynote speeches, workshops, successful book, and countless podcasts have influenced and motivated thousands of people around the world, reminding them of their true greatness and amazing potential to fully achieve their dreams.

Michael UnbrokenProfile Photo

Michael Unbroken


Michael is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, speaker, coach, and advocate for adult survivors of childhood trauma.