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Jan. 18, 2023

When a Mexican & Dominican Dads Flex Their Dad Muscles : Conversation with Manny Digital


Sometimes you meet new people by going to school with them or being raised in the same hood. That’s cool. 

But you know what’s cooler? 

Having a good friend introduce you someone they are certain you will hit it off with. Someone that they feel vibes, walks, and talks like you. 

Meet Manny Digital. He’s that dude. 

As soon as we had out first conversation I knew we would be friends for a long time. He’s a Latino, a father, an entrepreneur and a hiphop head 

He invited me to be a guest on his “Father Hoods Podcast’’. The conversation was intense and insightful. 

I knew I wanted him on my show. I asked. He obliged. 

Tune in and listen to two men who are trying to do the best they can to make a difference in their kids lives. 

The stories are rich and the laughs are many. 

Hit the play button and make sure let me know what you think. 

– A little more about Mr. Digital:


Manny "Digital" made his bones in The Bronx, NY. A son of Dominican immigrants, he grew up observing the pitfalls of his BX environment and carefully applied the lessons he picked up to set himself up for a better outcome.

One of those lessons came from his personal experience as part of a broken home. He knew early on the importance of a father's presence and how setting clear expectations with his eventual children would be the most impactful elements of building his family.

Fast forward... life ultimately connected Manny with KGB, which led to him meeting DJ EFN. Under the common bond of being fathers, these friends started an entertaining podcast called Father Hoods, where they chronicle their lives as Dads along with icons in Hip Hop like N.O.R.E., Ludacris, Bun B, actor Jerry Ferrara and many more. These Dads are also partners in FlyDadGear.com, a physical products company providing Dads with the resources and gear every Fly Dad needs.

Check out his podcast show with his cohosts KGB & DJ EFN
https://www.fatherhoodspod.com

Follow his show on the socials: 
https://instagram.com/fatherhoodspod
https://www.facebook.com/fatherhoodspod
https://youtube.com/channel/UC7FUD8eigcZ6J8Z697jQKvA

Transcript

I just wanted to say welcome to the show, everyone. This is tv. Well, I'm tv. He's not tv. Uh, this is Manny Digital, which I find interesting. Is that your official and government name? No, . I'm like, man, that's cool. Um, but I would like for you to tell us, tell our audience who you are, um, and what you do. Yeah. Um, so my, my government name is Manuel Monk. Oh, really? Um, I go by many digital because of my 16 plus years of experience and in the career known as advertising technology. So I am somebody. Dealt with content creators of different scales, helping them monetize their content. Typically it's editorial content, so think of blogs or big publications like The New York Times as an example. Um, helping them fantastic. Create revenue through bunch of advanced technology that I won't get into, but that's kind of where the moniker came from. And it was a self baptized because I'm a big hip hop head. I always thought the Rizza going by Bobby Digital. Yeah. Bobby Digital cool moniker. Yeah. So I, I definitely hijacked Bobby Digital and just took the digital made to man Digital I was gonna ask if you were inspired by him. . I was, I was definitely inspired by him. Um, so that, that's near my, my trajectory of my career-wise. Like, that's kind of where it started, been in that space for 16 plus years. But I'm, I consider myself a, a dad, entrepreneur actually. Um, okay. I , I started a company along with a partner of mine called, uh, fly Dad. And Fly Dad is a, Right now, people consider it a bag company because our first and only product at the moment is a men's diaper bag. Di diaper backpack. It's a goat bags bag though. Yeah. , right? So it came from a pain point, like a lot of guys that I've talked to, you know, you, if you are the, the dad with the bag, you're usually carrying your lady's bag. And it's really fucking difficult to find shit in those bags, . So, so that's where it's at. And then, uh, just, and I, I'm sorry I'm making this super long-winded. I hope your audience is No, it's fine. Fine. , uh, I had mentioned earlier like, I'm, I'm from the Bronx. I grew up in the Bronx, New York, uh, of Dominican descent. So my parents are both from the Dominican Republic, uh, was able to kind of get through a lot of the hurdles. People here when it comes to living in the Bronx and made it to, you know, college graduated, um, have had a, the opportunity to live in multiple states here in new. United States. And now I live back in New York. Three kids later, uh, picked up a wife in, in my travels around the country, had three kids and boom, bap. And then lastly, here we go. The Entrepreneurial Venture Fatherhood's podcast is, uh, a podcast I do with a couple of my homies. Uh, and we just kind of do a little bit of what we are gonna do now, just like therapy, talk about dad life and really try to help each other out. I love it. And that's how we met. Um, that's right. Manny and I were introduced by a mutual friend, uh, Susan, who I actually interviewed last week. Um, brought her on. Um, we're, I'm working through the editing right now. I'm relaunching in the newest iteration of the podcast. Nice. I'm bringing on people. Um, but talk to our, uh, my friend. Introduced us and said, you gotta get together. Uh, and she's done this with a handful of people and it's a 50 50%, uh, ratio in terms of success in hitting it off. Uh, soon as I, I looked at your stuff and, uh, got to talk to you. I knew we were gonna, we were going to, we're gonna vibe, um, been on your show, uh, enjoyed it thoroughly. Um, and it was about time that I brought him. Because I wanna know more about him, ask him questions, and, uh, I'll put him under the microscope. Uh, he's a, I love what he's doing with Fatherhood's, by the way, because for me, I'm a hip hop head. I was born in the seventies, raised in the nineties in the hood here in Dallas. The hood different, right? Uh, ally know that each hood and hoods are different, but, um, gang life and whatnot was going on. And I just had my, my, my. What is the Sony, uh, what is it now? I forgot. Sony Walkman and my, my earphones and I was good. I was tuned out. I was listening to hip hop and that, that's what raised me for a good chunk of my life. So knowing that there's a podcast where people my age are similar, who are also fathers, who are also talking about the dad life and, uh, going through it, uh, sharing whatnot. Um, it's fascinating to me and it's something that I, it obviously resonated with. So shouts out to you. I love what y'all are doing with the covers for your Yeah. No, that's always like, alright, what cover is this? . So, by the way, the episode that TV was featured on for Fatherhood's is episode 1 56, which, oh, uh, sheesh. I think it was like 2021. Timeframe. I think that is when we did it. Yeah. Um, so we took a, a cover, a Buster Rhymes cover and remixed it. I think it was Buster Rhymes and, um, it was, yeah, so, so that's what, that's kind of our little like gimmick, if you will. Yeah. We need mix album Art's. Dope . I'm like, man, whoever other graphic designer is killing it, whoever it is. I love this guy. Shout out to Ron Taylor. He's a, he's a frat brother of mine and he's, he does it for us. Really meticulous dude. Sometimes from a fault, but he does really good work. I'm impressed. I'm also a graphic designer, so I'm like, damn, this is so neat. And I guess y'all take photos for it to kind of, so he can match it up or he finds photos of you guys? Yeah, he just digs in the crates. My goodness. It's work. Okay. All right. It's hard. Yeah, it's hard work. I'm a designer, I get it. Like, damn, now what am I gonna do for this cover? I wanna do something dope and like, ah. Um, so shout out to him for sure. Uh, well deserved credit. Wanted to start off with this big question, Manny. So here it is. How are you handling modern day slang? Ooh, . That is very meaty. How are you dealing with it? Like, oh shit, what does this mean? Uh, no cap. What the hell? Uh, they don't wear it. They're not wearing a baseball cap. Uh, is this, what is that significance? It's like I had to go Google that. I'm like, what's up with this one? I don't understand. Um, and yeah, keep talking. do tell, it's a great question. It's a loaded question, but it's an awesome question. So I'll tell you a little bit. Like I said, I have three kids. My eldest, she is, 15, my son is eight, I'm sorry, nine. And then my youngest daughter, she's six. Because of my eldest being in high school, being the ELD oldest, and we're just involved in all these social Mm. I call them experiments cuz to me they feel that way. But this is her world, right? Um, she comes home with something new every week, . And my reaction is always, yo, shut up with that nonsense. What are you saying? And, and gradually I'm starting to wean myself away from that, that reaction because I'm like, yo, I was that, I was that person. Exactly right. You gotta be careful, right, . Yeah. And you, you know, you become now, now I'm a boomer, right? In in as far as like the slang goes, right? Yeah. That took me a minute. I'm like, what's that baby boom. Really Right. Is that, and that's an insult, . Yes. Right. And then, and, but then I'm like, no, I'm Gen Z or whatever, you know, whatever. I can't even keep track. Right. But, so the way I deal with it is I, I try to engage in conversation to understand the genesis, to understand if they understand the genesis of the slang. Mm-hmm. , and I try to approach it from like the historical standpoint, like whatever the history of that particular slang might be. Many times there is some sort of correlation with our mm-hmm. generation or culture. Right, right. But oftentimes there's, there's not. Right. It's just some far off thing that you're just like, all right, no cap. Um, what is like? You're playing jeopardy with these kids. Yeah. . Yeah. So, so I, the way I handle it or the way I tried, Too. I, I'm not good at it, but I, I, my intention is to understand mm-hmm. , because I think funda like with this, or in general with most things in our society, regardless of whether it has to come from a parenting perspective or just a general perspective, the lack of the un, the, the attempt to understand mm-hmm. Is I think the fundamental root cause of a lot of our issues. Yes. Pick a place in the world doesn't make a difference. Yes. Yes. So I try to embody that in my parenting. I'm not always successful, I'll be very honest, cuz my initial reaction typically takes hold. But then I find myself apologizing the hell out of it and then reverting back to what I'm intending to accomplish. Well, good for you for apologizing, that's for sure. Um, how quick are you at adopting the lingo? Do you find yourself adopting much of it? I'm kind of, you know what, I'm a chameleon. Yeah. I'm a chameleon and I still haven't decided if that is. Out of the natural way I am. Or if it's based on being an opportunist. Hmm. Yes. There's a distinction. Yeah. Oh, that's another direction for sure that I would like to talk to about. But go ahead. I want to hear this. So I, I. . I do utilize it in settings where I think it will resonate, or at least my expectation is that it will resonate. Um, but I try not to pretend to be something I'm not so in, in some kid, and I'll give you. very good. Recent example, so I was at, um, my old high school in the Bronx, uh, a couple weeks ago. Mm-hmm. and I was, I guess you could call it, mentoring a few kids that were interested in podcasting. Oh, wow. Oh, so they just opened up a new podcast studio in the, in the school. They invited me to come talk to the kids. I thought it was dope. I was like, yeah, I'll impart whatever wisdom I can . And I tried to layer in a couple of like words that I know that they would think I didn't know, just to like, try to find, find some credibility. But I did it in a kind of a, a joking manner. Like, haha, I know I shouldn't be using this word, but I'm gonna use it anyway. What do you think about it? Like, on that type of time? Yeah. Yeah. I think it went over well. Um, but I try my best just to stay within my, like what my organic way of being is language wise. But it does change depending on the situation sometimes. Love it. Um, I find myself doing it more tongue in cheek, much like yourself. Most of it. I cannot adopt the note cap thing. I just cannot, I I cannot use that in a sentence. Uh, with a straight face. Um, can you do it, can you do it via text? No. Use it mostly with the tab. Yeah. Is what I, I like to use. Do you? I don't, I can't even do it in a text. I can't, I can't go there. Uh, I, I have found myself, some of them are simple, like, uh, just 100%. When people say 100%, I'm like, oh, that's just an extension of something that was already like, yeah, agree 100%. I agree with, um, Lidy facts. Facts, yeah. That, well, that's kind of a play of a modern day language, but using it as a punctuation of facts. Right? We, I can do that. Uh, you know, let's, uh, spill the t, that one. Oh yeah. I can't do spell that one. I can't do that one. The lidy actually it's lit, that kind of thing. I find it funny. My daughter actually banned me from using it. Even jokingly, , she canceled you. She told me, you can't use it, dad. I'm like, ah. But then when Beyonce used it, I'm like, look, Beyonce's even saying Liddy. She's like, no, I can't believe she did that. She's like, she's better than that . She said it in a sub song. That's long ago. Yeah. Um, but I, I do try to stay in my lane in terms of like, cuz it, it, it almost seems like I might be mocking them. Uh, and it definitely when you're talking to them and you're having a serious conversation, if you throw that out there, it's like you're gonna lose if you're gonna lose them. Right. Um, but I find it interesting because it is checking myself as well. Like, I can't really be overly critical because something I I, I think about a lot is language evolves, language grows, and it at some point or another, almost everything we speak. Was was slang of some sort, right? Um, virtually everything. No, not everything. Obviously there's still some proper grammar in the world. Uh, so knowing that and keeping that mindset keeps me from like, like, what is this? Y'all aren't speaking English. Get outta here. Um, and we were them . So, uh, I don't wanna be my parents. I fight that all the time. Like, I don't wanna sound like my parents, like, pull your pants up. Well, obviously don't have 'em down on your knees. But all that ongoing, uh, conversation is making sure that I'm checking myself and not just being an old cranky ass dude. Um, so, but I thought it would be interesting. It's hard. It's hard as hell, bro. I gotta tell you, and I, I know your daughters are older, different sets of challenges at this point. Mm-hmm. , but there's like, it's like that early stage of development and like child rearing. It's like, I'll give you an example. My son mm-hmm. nine years old. My son wears the same hoodie now that it's a little chilly here in New York. Mm-hmm. four out of the five days a week. Hmm. I remember those days. Now I'm like, yeah, I. Yo bro, like, don't you think you gotta give the uniform a little break? Right? And then I'm like, and then I gotta step back for a second. I'm like, yo, what's the worst that's gonna happen? Right? If he doesn't give it to us to wash, it's gonna smell and then, yeah, okay, he's gotta deal with that. But if he's okay with that, like, why am I sweating it? right? Yeah. He's gotta deal with that odor and probably some humiliation from people. . Yeah. But he thinks he's the hottest shit on the planet in school. Ah, . And he gets the credit for it. Okay. Like people gravitate toward him. So managing, like letting that flourish so that he can find himself is important. Nice. But we're. And, and maybe this is a bad thing, but my wife and I we're both, I call us pretty humble people. Like we don't take ourselves more serious than the next person. Okay. My son is a very kindhearted person, so, so long as that's intact mm-hmm. , I think we can negotiate some of the other things while he figures out who he's gonna become. But it's a struggle. You said something that I, I, I love, um, cause my parenting is, and that actually leads to the next question I wanted to ask is, but my approach has always been kind of, I have two daughters. , they're both similarly at different, which is really interesting. Like, and they're both different sides of me. Um, that's wild. Yeah. Like they, one takes on more of the, um, the fine artist, um, woo woo aspect of me. And the other one takes more of the strategic side of me cuz I, I kind of am the programmer and I'm the designer. I'm like, I I play both sides. Cause I, I flourish on both sides and they each are, are like that. Oh goodness. Where was it going with that? Oh yes. Um, one, the oldest didn't go to college. She went straight to the, uh, the, the job market. And she's got a full-time job. The younger one, she's going to college. We're working through that right now. College is expensive, man. Ugh. Um, , I'm trying to figure that out. Uh, cuz. Uh, I was an independent business owner. Right, right. But, um, I didn't want to shove my beliefs on either one of them. They know my beliefs in a lot of ways. I didn't go to college. I started my own business. But at the end of the day, as long as they were good human beings, I knew that we were gonna figure it out. And if they're doing that, then we can negotiate on a lot of things. It's, if they're good people doing good service and providing and helping and showing up for individuals, organizations like all this nonprofit, like they do these kinds of things. I am good. I'm not gonna stress out about some of these things. And in the moment it's re catching yourself and like, is this really important ? Is this a fight I wanna pick? It's. It's literally like having to ask yourself that exact question in the moment. Like having the awareness to be able to do it is, I would call it damn near impossible because your emotions are riding so high off of something that nine times outta 10 is bs. Yep. Does it matter? But you are, you're wired in a way and we just, I, I could directly correlate it to my upbringing. Yes. So, so it's really difficult to shake as much as I'm in similar path with, um, similar way that, that you described. I don't want to be my parents. Mm-hmm. , I love my parents. Same. They did what they had to do based on what they had available. And I appreciate the hell out of that. But I believe, and I think if I ask them, they'll say the same. I don't want you to be me. I want you to be better than I was. And that's the exact same thing I want for my kids. So like that specific, like letting them be who they are so long as, you know, the f. Foundational pillars are, are set properly. Let them Yeah. College. If you don't want to go to college, don't go to college. But here's what reality looks like. Right. You gotta figure out how to sustain yourself. Absolutely. Yeah. And then, you know, we'll, we'll, I'll be here. I'll, as long as I can to help you figure it out, you will figure it out. Yeah. Um, thank you for that question. The next question for you, who has, who has influenced your parenting style? How is anybody in particular or how have you come to find yourself as a father and how you show up? Damn. Yo, you, you got some good questions. . Take it from somebody who, I feel like my podcast is very ad hoc, rapid fire. Kind of like come to, you know, sounds like you did some diligence. I did a little bit cuz I'm like, we wanna, you're the first time I'm talking to a dad who. In the mix right now, right? Yeah. So you're, you're learning, obviously, it's all a learning experience. Um, absolutely. In real time. in real time. Um, so, so it's, it's an interesting. Patch quilt sort of, um, setup. Gotcha. I do take influence from people that I look up to and kind of respect to some degree, but understanding full well nobody's perfect. So I don't, I don't look at any singular person as the inspiration. I take pieces of how I see them move and operate from my third party vantage point. These are people that I may not even actually personally know. Mm-hmm. , but I see how they move in certain, in certain places, and I admire how they do that, right? Mm-hmm. and so, yep. The, but if I had to pick right, honestly, like the starting the Fatherhood's podcast has given me so much useful things that I can actually. Ply by merely having conversations with other dads. Full stop. It doesn't matter. I don't care if you're black, white, rich, poor, fat, skinny. It doesn't make a difference. The conversations around paint, call them pain points. Cause there's obviously a lot of good things that come from being a dad, but like we tend to, you know, when people talk about parenting, the first thing they fly to is like, oh, you can't, you're not gonna believe what I had to do, da, da, da. So you kind of start from that place, , but just, just like little things, man, that people say that they don't even intend to impart any wisdom. I take as big nuggets because it strikes me like, and anytime that I'm willing to be honest with myself and then look in the mirror, I grow so much. So it's this big mishmash. A lot of it is, I'd say, A self like accountability, like taking that moment to just stop after, after I have a good conversation or have a bad conversation with my kids. Mm-hmm. , assess what you just talked about. Yes. And see if what you did was for their betterment not to make you feel good, or your own ego to set a, satisfy your own ego. Right. And if you can come away honestly saying like, yo, that was for them. That wasn't for me. Then I feel like I did my job. And if not, then I find the next opportunity to correct that by whether it's apologizing or doing something that I may have said I'm not gonna do in order to show them like, yo, you were right. Love that man. Um, how about you? Oh, go ahead. I'll let you finish and then I wanna know how you pattern your dad's style. Thank you. Um, that's, that's a T-shirt. Yeah. . That's right. , like my dad's style. Um, , I think you said something very powerful, um, in your podcast, through your podcast, you've learned so much. And I think that that in and of itself is the remedy to a lot or to improvement. Um, is having conversations. And I think as men, we don't have them. Uh, and before maybe we were in a small circle, we lived in our neighborhood, who are you gonna talk to? And if you're being like, tough and you know, you know you got your shit, you're handling your home, you're not gonna share that your kids are running over you or your kids aren't listening or, or they're scared of you, like you're not gonna share that. So they just, the, the fact that you can talk to other fathers and you do this on the regular and can take away little nuggets here or there, speaks to the value of simply having conversations, vulnerable, open conversations with no bullshit. Right? Um, I love that. And, and. It just says it, it re re affirms my belief in just talking more. It's something as men that we don't do enough. I'm trying to do that better myself. We have to talk, share our shit. Uh, if you don't do therapy, do that. Just talk to each other. Dump it for that. Um, so it's, it's the, it's the truth. And I, like I said earlier, like I firmly believe if we as human beings mm-hmm. can do that more often with empathy and honesty, bro. Like, there's so very little that we can't get past. We don't ever have to like agree. That's the other thing, like people, when you open up, you feel like some people feel like they have to agree with whatever you. You don't have to agree. Mm-hmm. , you just gotta listen. And then you gotta weigh in. If you, if you feel compelled to Right. Agree to disagree, move on your way. I was watching a, uh, Brene Brown. She has a special on a new special on hbo and she talks about one of the magical things to actually doing exactly what you're saying is listening and believing. You don't have to believe that it's true for you, but just believe, oh, well that never happened to me. So that can't be true. No, not necessarily. Just listen and believe them in their experience. And there's very little that you cannot get a get passed with almost anyone if you were just take that approach. Um, but a lot of us are, are stuck in, in our homes or. Pockets or like, we just feel like we can't talk for whatever reason. Maybe somebody shame, uh, maybe look down upon whatever. Um, and it's unfortunate, but, um, that's to me was the most powerful thing you said, uh, because you are picking like, oh, I like what he does there, what he did there, and I'm gonna apply that. Um, powerful in terms of what, yes. I'm sorry. Go ahead. Yeah, no, I was gonna say just real quick, like, just to give you an example of somebody that's relatively current, current events, right? Mm-hmm. like, uh, will. Punching, slapping, uh, uh, Chris Rock. Mm-hmm. . Right. There's a lot in what Will Smith shared in his book? Will that I, that I happened to read. Which already too, but Right. Okay. So there was a lot in that book that I took away and I was like, yo, I, I'm applying it. Mm-hmm. , because the way he looks at his role as a son and how he was brought up and how he takes the good from his experience and tries to apply it to being a father, and then he goes and makes the mistake that he did. You know, it's just more evidence like, yo. Nobody's perfect. Yeah, yeah, yeah. But that, to me, that moment, even though for him is probably monumental and it's probably very remorseful. I don't know. Or regretful. Um, it doesn't take away the value what I was able to grab from that book and apply. Right? Yep. Make the mistake. Hopefully here's at, he atone for it and he can get past it and all that good stuff. But like still, I look at him as like a great example of somebody who I take pieces of to try to be a good dad. . So to answer your question, like he's someone that I have looked up to, um, say what you were gonna say about him. I think that he has, for the most part, and he's, he's a, i I imagine that that proved that he's a tightly wound individual, like many of us are in any given moment we could snap, right? Uh, that doesn't take away from the fact that we are good people, that he is a good person that has done really good in his life and his career, but he had this one big ass moment, uh, and he cracked in the most public way possible. Uh, but one of the things I've, I have admired about him and his upbringing of his kids, which could be controversial for some, but for me, is just letting his kids be his kids and to then produce to produced two talented, passionate, loving individuals like his son, what he's doing to try the, the water project. Um, like that to me is like, how, how do you, how do you create that type of human being? It's, it's not an accident. And he has a couple of 'em, creative, unique. You don't have to agree with their, their, their approach to life or their lifestyle, but they are who they are. And for me, that, that I, I valued that I, that made a lot of sense to me. So I picked up some pieces from him, just like you just said, over the years and watching them. Um, now one thing I always hated hate it, and I still hate it with the passion, is when you over glamorize anyone overly, anyone. And a lot of people were doing that, which is the reason for, I think the, uh, the reaction to the slap. A lot of people over glamorize will and Jada. Hmm. Like, everybody wants a relationship like Will and Jada. Everybody wants. Someone that Relationship goals. Yeah. Like no, no, no, no. They're human beings there. There's so much that you don't know. Like stop putting them up there like that. So when they fail, they feel hard. Right. And, and the stuff that's said about, uh, Jada as well, like, I don't know. I don't pretend to know, but the stuff that's the venom that dispute out there, we over idolized them. We put 'em way too high in this, this pedestal. It's not their fault that they were glamorized like that. And they would willingly tell you that that was probably they, they never wanted. Um, but I, I pick up things from everybody. Uh, they are, he is one that I've been watching for years since back in the day watching his acting career and just watching the way he moves and as a father. But I pick up things everywhere. Um, I pick up things from business books. I pick up things from a lot of my parenting. I, I figured out my best parenting comes from the fact that I used to be a manager, a grocery manager, and I had teenagers, um, that was a majority of my staff. And then I had adults. and trying to figure out how to speak to each one and move each group and try to get them to show up. And back then you couldn't wear earrings, you couldn't chew gum, you couldn't, if you had tattoos, you had to cover them up. Um, so I, when I became a father and I started, ha, I had two stepchildren and then I had my daughter. So in a span of like a year, I had three kids from, went from zero to three, I realized that the management, cuz you're moving, you're talking to human beings, you're managing personalities, you're trying to figure out how to communicate your ideas or how to, hey, this is the new policy, the new rule in the house. Based on this or that, like, you know, go to bed by nine, this is what we're doing. Right? But, uh, it was management. It was learning how to move people and persuade them to do things for their own best interest, right? Mm-hmm. . Um, so I've been much like you said, yourself just knitting, uh, what you say, a patchwork of, uh, of lessons that I've learned all across my life. Um, there's some, some authors that I've picked up, some things I really love. Brene Brown. Um, she put words to, to concepts that I never understood, just in, in terms of I, okay, here's a great topic for you. I'm convinced that anybody before the nineties was raised on shame and guilt. Oh, and passive aggressiveness. Everything was commuted to you, communicated to you in a passive aggressive way, and shame and guilt was layered in there. You do behave, conform. Yeah. To conform. Great thing. That's a better word you said. So wait, you said people that were born before nineties Oh no. That were, yeah. Before the nineties were raised almost a hundred percent on that. With that method of Got it. Of uh, approach with that approach by our parents. I used to think that it was just Mexicans then I. White folks. And then I met black folks, and then I met some Africans, and then I met some Dominicans and I'm like, oh no, this is everyone. Everyone used shame. I'm like, what are the people gonna think about us? What's the church gonna think? We, we, they're like, we we, oh no. Like, you can't go out like that. You can't wear that. You can't say that. I'm like, am I, I'm not hurting anyone. What's the big No, you cannot. We will not. It is, it's, it's almost a hundred percent true. So that book, Brene's Browns, I don't even know what book, when she, she kind of put talks about vulnerability a lot to me. That was very eye-opening. And I'm like, oh shit. That's exactly what we've been doing forever. And I refuse to raise my kids based on shame. It's either you understand the ramifications of this action or you don't. Um, but I won't shame you into it. I'm, I'm sighing because I, I believe wholeheartedly what you just talked about, which, I, I was just about to try to find an excuse for, grew up in a particular way, and the way we interacted in my neighborhood was v like you snapped on each other. Okay. That's, yes. I, I hear you. We, I did too. So, people know that if you, they don't know actually that if you fuck with me, I can like, I'll, I'll pop off on you because I was raising the hood. Like, we're going, I'll come back. Yeah. All day long. And, and my, and my, my approach has always been in, in those circumstances, it was never physical. Right. Some people couldn't take it and they go to blows. Right. Me, it was wittiness. Mm-hmm. . And it was find the way to disarm this person by clapping back verbally. Right. Creatively. Yep. Right. And I, that's something, that's a skill I developed and I still have it to this day. So, fantastic skill. I'm, I'm there with you, . It's, it's great. But I find like my kid's skin, well, it's developing. I, I'll tell you in a few years, whether or not it's thick enough to handle what I'm saying, but I find sometimes like it comes off like shame or like an insult. Mm-hmm. . Right. And I don't, and they know my personality. They know that I'm clowning not really trying to hurt your feelings. I think at least my, my older two understand, actually my youngest, she could gimme a run for my money. . Why am I not surprised? , that six year old will put it on me and I'm not expecting it. And I'm like, whoa, wait. A got me. So, so it comes off like, I, I feel bad sometimes because I feel like they ingest what I'm saying as me shaming them. Mm-hmm. and, and I have to be careful. And check in and acknowledge when I've messed that up because I might be too aggressive. And there it's not, it's because of my conditioning. I'm like sparring with dudes my age going back and forth like I got good at this shit. Mm-hmm. . So I can't take N B A level talent. And drop it down to, you know, freaking CYO basketball. Yeah, you're right. Level. Like, I gotta chill. So it's, it's, it's a, again, like, it's like with everything, like it's that we could be, we could be giving each other advice and like we try to, um, level set a little bit and say, yo, here's how I would approach it. I can't tell you that I'm doing it a hundred percent that way, the way I'm talking about it, but it is the, the approach that I see working when I do do it. Mm-hmm. . So I would recommend you do that, right? Mm-hmm. . But it's hard to actually do it consistently and be a hundred percent about it, which is the grace you have to give yourself to make those mistakes and Of course, correct. Yeah. Yeah. And, and I think you, you also said something earlier that I commend you for, um, a lot of parents struggle with apologizing, at least acknowledging like, wait, I do, I used to do that every weekend. I try. Well, in the moment I tried to do it, but every weekend when I had the girls, I would self-assess, how did that go? What lessons did we cover? How did I do, uh, how did I show up? Um, and then try to remedy that. But if there were moments, there's a couple times where I, I lost my shit. And they were early on when they were younger, I literally lost it and they were crying and they're in their other room. And then I, the more I thought about it and ruminated on it, I'm like, that was fucked up. They're just kids. They literally were like six and four and like, they don't know what they don't know. And I just lost it. Called them over. I'm crying, I apologize, and I'm like, please forgive me. Um, but it's, it's that willingness to apologize and acknowledge that, dude, yeah, you're grown, but you still made mistakes. And it's okay to apologize. And I think I hear this from a lot of adults is that they have parents to this day that refuse to acknowledge that mistakes were made or that they cross lines or just disrespect. They feel disrespected even as adults or parents are still talking to them in such a way and they refuse to apologize. So knowing when you do cross that line and when maybe you are hurting them, um, is key. And you can always back that up. They know you're, you're not trying to be a jerk and you're just having some fun with 'em, or maybe just trying to toughen them up a little bit. Um, I respect that because I'm the same way. Um, kudos to you brother . I mean, look, the world is cruel, right? I'd rather you and I spar and you kind of get a feel for it, and then I see your reaction and then we maybe discuss it. Or worst case you cry and then I atone for my sins and then we kind of figure it out, right? Because cuz I'd rather us do that and go through that than then you go out there and get destroyed by somebody and now your psyche's completely Yeah, yeah. Screwed up. Hundred percent. Because it matters more to a lot of these kids. Well, I'd I'd say to most kids what their peers reaction or relationship with their peers is versus like what their parent might think for a long Yeah. At that age, for sure. Yeah, absolutely. They, they definitely need to be able to hold their own or else, um, self-esteem gets dropped to Lowe's. You don't have that then they're going to, to feel horrible at, at, at school or anywhere frankly. So I, I definitely try to do that as well. I try to, I like that sparring. We, we have. We're known for being really witty and just going at each other, improving. Um, and, but feelings sometimes do get hurt, , because at some point you're going to say something that's insulting Cross the line. Yeah, like, it's like boxing back with the analogy, like sometimes you get punched below the belt. Oops. My bad. My bad. . Oh man. Um, what does your shirt say? It says poppy trudo. It does say poppy Chula. That's what I thought it said . That's my girlfriend, my yoga. Oh, that's dope. That's your, your girlfriend's yoga? Her brand? Yeah. She does a, uh, prenatal yoga, uh, classes. Wow. Um, yeah, and she did a little trade show kind of thing in my b and she had these printed, and by the way, they're the number one sellers moms. Were getting 'em for the husbands or dads, or dads. Were getting 'em for themselves. We might have to talk, I might have to figure, we might have to figure out a collab with. The fly dad. Cause I think that'd be, that'd be dope. One of the, the, one of the people that comes, one of the ladies that's been coming consistently, I think she's Puerto Rican. I, I have a hunter. Her husband's Dominican. Oh, . That's crazy. She walks up in there with a blo. I don't know. I'm just a hutch. I don't think he's Puerto Rican. He might be. I don't know. . Wow. That sounded horrible. Um, my bad. If you're watching this, homie. I forgot your name. Hey, we're just sparring. Don't worry about it. We're just, it is what it is, brother. All right. All right. Um, I wanted to ask you in as a father, we're all, we, we got so many things we're trying to teach our kids. Yeah. Right. We're trying to prepare them, but what would you say are some of your, your top, uh, lessons you're trying to. And get across to them like, oh shit, this thing, if they don't understand this thing, cuz you like, you've lived a full life, you've been in the business world, you've been in the hood. You, you had to, they had to be willing. For me, it's also actually important that they're able to go to a, a, a urban setting. And feel comfortable and go to a boardroom and feel comfortable and like, feel comfortable wherever the fuck they're at. That's always been very important to me, especially cuz they're both females, so it's like, yeah, you ain't showing up weak. We have to make sure that you show up and you shake hands like. Like, they're not gonna know what to expect. They're like, oh shit. You, you've been taught, you've been trained. Um, I'll tell you, my biggest fear, which goes into like what I try to impart and condition and like train them to, to overcome is a lack of self-confidence. Mm-hmm. And how now? My, and I don't know if you experienced this. This is a question for you that I'd love to understand, but like please do. Being a father to one boy, two girls, the deck of color, the deck is stacked so much against, especially the girls, right? That Oh God, yeah. It's imperative that at a minimum they have enough self-awareness and confidence in their abilities and who they are and understand that about themselves because without it, I feel like they will never be able to reach their fullest potential regardless of what society challenges society brings. And there will be many, mm-hmm. . So I struggle with, I, I guess I, I push that agenda. Like, yo, I give them props when they do things well, I challenge them when there's reason to challenge, but in a way, I, I try to do it in a way where it's not deflating, it's more encouraging. Like, yo, you got to this point now, what if you would've put extra effort and gotten, you could have gotten to this point. Cause you know, you, you've proven it before by doing X, y, and Z. Yeah. Now I always point to the history because it's easy for them. It's easier for them to understand like where they've been and like up. By that, like, yo, I know I got this. Look at my, my 15 year old honor student since the day she started getting graded, you know, exams in school. Yeah. To this day, she's always worried about doing well on a test and I'm like, yo dogs dude. Your dogs no cap. Go look in, go check the receipts. like layer that all you do is over perform. Yeah. So why are you, why? Yeah. Stress. I mean, uh, uh, practice, study, prepare, but don't kill yourself. Like you gotta be yours. You gotta enjoy life. So the confidence thing to me is paramount across all of my children. I agree. And trying to find, and I, I can't say that I have the formula. It's me and my wife and everybody that we can, their coaches and sports, everybody. I'm like, they're teachers. Listen, my kid needs opportunities to increase their confidence. However you think you can help, please do. Because it takes a village. Yeah, it does. How about you? Well, actually let me ask the question. So the question for you was, do you find your daughters to lack confidence? No. Okay. They still question themselves, which I think is normal, but nothing that signals like, yo, they ha they, they don't have a certain level of confidence. Right. They don't, I mean, they're good for the most part. Um, they're moments that we, we have conversations and they're struggling and stress. Uh, especially the older one. It's the first one that I can think of. Cause she was in a job, she was trying to prove herself and doubting herself. Um, but now she's, she literally said to me the other day, like, I can learn anything. I can do anything. I literally, like, I, I'm doing everything. I, I do graphics, I do video editing, I do podcast editing. I do. And if I don't know it, I'll figure it out. I'm like, wow. Yeah. Good job. Wow. Um, what I try to do that intentionally because I know that's an issue. If you don't have confidence, everything becomes challenging. It could be just crossing the street. If you walk confidently, you might get run the fuck over. Yeah. Right. Uh, cuz there's people like, are you gonna cross or you're not gonna cross . It can be as simple as, Um, from a very young age, we would do a lot of things. We even did part core. They play basketball, um, they do art, they do watercolor, they do all types of things. I had, I took age, took like even a free class of, uh, jujitsu. Yeah. They took, uh, a boxing class, a couple of boxing classes. So much like what she said, I called it a portfolio success that were good at all of those. And if they stuck with it, they could be great at any of them if they chose to, but over time they continue to add to their portfolio. So anytime something would come up, just like you said, where they start questioning whether they can or. I just like, Hey, here's your portfolio. Like these are the things that you've done. And you know, say they're 30 and there's some new issues, like these are the things you have done, girl, like you got this. Like there's no reason to lack confidence. Just show up. In worst case scenario, you don't quote unquote make it. you'll do it again. Like it's not that big a deal. It's almost nothing's life or death. Um, so it's building their confidence over the years to where by the time they have to show up in a big way, it's, it's not a big deal. Or even they know they can manage their own expectations and know, Hey, it's cool. I showed up and I did the best I could, or I wasn't, I wasn't prepared and that's the reason I didn't succeed. Um, they do poetry. They performed, they've stepped on stages so, To me was probably my biggest key to ensuring that they could step up, get a mic and speak to people, , hold the, hold the audience. So between all that, that was my way of trying to ensure that confidence was, was instilled in them. Uh, anyone, whenever they, they faltered or that was diminished, they could quickly summon it back up just by checking their portfolio. That's a good hack actually. Like getting them prepared to speak in front of people, like, like a public setting, bro, that, that could be life-changing. You're gonna do with, I can't recommend that enough. That to me is one of my, the things that I've focused on because I've, as I've gotten into this marketing space and, and grown, it became very evident that the people that can communicate the best, especially verbally, you can be a great writer and my youngest is a good writer, but those that can communicate, through words. My idea into your idea. You know, whether it's trying to woo woo a partner, whether it's trying to get a raise, get a job, get a raise, whatever you, whatever it is, it's this communication. Yeah. So if you can get confident doing this in the public forum, one-on-one becomes easy. It's a cakewalk. Yes. Like think, uh, get to me. That was my biggest. And it was accidental at the time, but they continued to do it for years. They got 'em coaches, they, they would, they would be paid a little bit here or there. Um, and now they don't have so much to do it. Although my young one did, uh, an open mic the other day. Um, she's got three or four pieces that she performed because she was, her stuff's pretty dang good. She's continued to write. So I know speaking to confidence that if she can do that, and she was vulnerable, she shared some stuff that makes me feel woo. Hey, you wanna cry? Have you shared, I feel like I've saw one of those you might have posted, or maybe it was one that you wrote about them. Um, they, I, I may have, I don't think I've posted anything from them recently. The older one doesn't write anymore, the younger one does. That's a while back. I think this is close to the time when we actually recorded together, so might be here. Plus that might have, it might've been my younger one when her last time she performed. Um, it was ill, whatever, whoever did it, it was ill. Yeah. And, and that confidence piece is there. So it's like, to me, spoken word improv, if you, I, I'm gonna put my older one in improv, I've told her already. Um, yeah, like it's, that is another critical, uh, skill set that I think everyone should master. Not master, but be good at it. Just being able to, Think on their feet. And I never feel like, oh, what do I say? Oh, I'm at a loss of words. Like, no, you're good. Take your time. Like, but um, I forgot what I say. Oh, yeah. So for me, those are the biggest life hacks to ensure that as they wander around the world, they have this presence and know that their words, they know how to convey their words, they know how to enunciate and, and like really put, uh, put it out there. And they, they know that they matter, right. And that they, they don't, they don't have to stress that that's a. Huge point, like knowing that you matter because you see headline after headline of all this craziness going on in the world that I, I don't necessarily think this is new. We just have more Yeah. Formats to, to push the, the media so to speak, but like the lack of confidence leading to people committing suicide and all this stuff because people esteem, yeah, they don't feel they matter. And sometimes, and, and I hate to say this like it's a parent's fault to a large degree, cuz you're not showing your child that they matter to you. Mm. How do you expect the rest of the world to give them that? Right. And, and, and sometimes I, I can't even blame the parents cuz they're caught up in like, imagine a parent that has multiple jobs, single parent, multiple jobs. Yeah. Trying to make sure that their family is fed, fed lights on. And then you don't, you don't stop to think, yo, let me spend 10 minutes and play with dolls with my kid. Something very basic, which I did last night, by the way. Good for you. . But like, but you know, on a serious tip, like it's stuff like that and that, that crushes me because I. . And that's why I, you know, like I said, I consider myself a dad, entrepreneur. Mm-hmm. , I have so much care for procreation and the development of human beings. Mm-hmm. Not, not the ownership of, because we talk about our kids as our kids. Mm. Our responsibility to take and push into the direction that they want to end up, you know, that's gonna me benefit them the most. Right. To be who they want to be. You don't own them, you don't own them. You get to you, you have the responsibility of guiding them. Make sure they don't die . Right, right, right, right. But it's, it's such a deep, like I have such a love for the work that a parent does that ultimately gives birth to this amazing person that contributes to society in a great way. Like everybody has that potential. Yeah. We just have to hone in. Agree. I, I tell people all the time, like, I, as much as I think my girls are, are amazing. I don't think I, I don't think they're that amazing in the sense that we all have the capacity. All these children have the capacity, but many don't have access. Many don't have, the parents are able to put that together for them because they don't have the, the resources, whether it's money, whether it's time, because our parent, my parents both worked. Um, a lot because they had to take care of the bills. So, and some of these parents are working two or three jobs, so I try to be careful with that. But at the same time, the truth is the truth. Um, and it's unfortunate, but it's, it falls all on us. Like I, I've compared it to us essentially, like we are everything they, I thought about this recently, especially up until they're a certain age. They really are depend on us to more way we behave and show up in the world to mirror. We are the filter, you know, they eat, they eat plantains because they see you like, oh, this is what we do. This is our people. They follow your religion, they f it is, it is through us. And if we are not making ourselves better, then what filters through us will be something that's less inadequate. Like if they're not feeling the love, they're not feeling, they're not getting the attention. Cause they don't go fuck about it much of anything as children outside of just you being next to her. Yeah. And it's such a simple concept, but it is such a profound one. It's. You don't need, um, oh, what's his name? The name will come to me. Okay. Oh, his name is Premium Pete. He has a podcast, I forget what he's calling these days. Premium Pete. Okay. He used to do a podcast with, uh, uh, I'm, I'm names right now are just not coming to mind. Okay. , he talks about presence as in being there over presence as in hundred percent. God damn. Right. Right. Yes. And so when you think about that, I, and describe, I'm gonna say a general statement now, and I'm sure there's gonna be some variation of it that doesn't apply, but Okay. I will say I don't think anybody has the excuse to not be present in their child's lives, no matter your financial situation. Mm. It doesn't matter. You can dedicate time to be there. , and I don't care if you got the Nintendos and the whatever, PlayStation, 5, 6, 7, whatever the hell it is. If you don't, if you don't have those things, you can still spend time with your child and literally just be, you don't even have to talk. Yeah. Just be in the room with each other. And that is such an impactful ti way to spend time with your child that will benefit them forever. Generations. Like, dude, think about it. I, I, I, okay, so first I wanna say the, I got that lesson really hammered across to me in a, in, up the movie. Yeah. At the end of the movie, he's sitting on the. On the sidewalk and he just says something along the lines, I just wanna spend time with my dad. Right? I just want my dad to be here. He didn't want anything else but that. And I'm like, oh, shit. Like in that moment it was like before, I never really got that, but in that moment it made perfect sense to me. Um, as adults, I challenge you or anyone listening to have conversations with each other and, and not hear the stories of your childhood come. Often the lack of presence of your parents often. And if that in and of itself doesn't push you to just drop whatever you're doing or like whatever empire you're trying to build because you want to give it to them, you want to give them millions and millions of dollars or whatever. If you don't stop and say, oh, let me just show up. Cause that's all they really care about. Cuz these stories of your lack of presence are stories they're gonna tell in twen 10 or 20 years. Yeah, my dad made all this money or he did this or that, but I just wanted him to be home and now I'm just, I'm going to a therapist, right? I'm trying to undo that. But it is those stories of the lack of presence or maybe he was there and he's abusive and those are other stories to be told, but it's there. We tell those stories of our childhood every single day. Damn. There it's, uh, so dj, EF f n is one of my co-hosts on Fatherhood's podcast, and he has, for those listening, don't know, he's the co-host of the Drink Champs podcast. Good, huge Makes some noise, . Um, and this is his constant struggle and the thing that he prioritizes, which is being there for his children, regardless of it could be, I don't know, they. It's controversial now, but like Kanye yay on there. Right. And he would, if he had something that he had to be there for his kids, he would love that show up. Right. And that's like a big, get huge following, like a really monumental moment for anyone to get an interview with. Um, yay. And he's, it's always like he's, he's able to center himself and find that opportunity to always be there as the father that his kids. Deserve. And it's, it's really remarkable and I give him a lot of props because it's very easy to find the scapegoat because of the world of entertainment that he's plugged into. Wow. Yeah. And not be around. They got plenty of people to interview. Plenty of opportunities are gonna come up. Um, exactly. Yeah. And every day would be an excuse. Good for him like that. I can tell you, well, I don't know how old his children are, but my oldest is 24. Oh goodness. Four two. Like, those are the, the monumental moments when it's like your field dad, you can sense him in the room kind of a thing. My, my kid is 20 and she talks about things we did when we were five or six already. Uh, I remember when we were broke and we were eating hotdogs day. I remember when we were living with. Like, man, those were some good hotdogs though, right? . I quit my job to be there, like just, and started this business. Uh, like that was my, like, I'll make more money. I'll figure out how to do marketing, right? I'll figure out how to make money. Uh, hopefully I won't get locked out. Locked up before then . But I will figure it out. But in the meantime, I'm gonna show up. I'm gonna be at every performance, I'm gonna be at everywhere I can be, and I'm allowed to be. Uh, and now as a 20 year old, I feel like, holy shit, that worked , that the experiment, that that risk worked. And I'm like to see her thriving, um, is the, the ultimate reward. Like, I'm good. I'm good. Right. Can I, can I ask you something When, so you have, your daughters are two years apart. Correct. Right. And I, if I remember correctly, you split from their mom relatively early on in their life, right? Yes. So where did you derive the confidence you feel you needed to be the father that you are today? Where did I derive the confidence? Because I'm giving you credit, I feel like. The confidence to be, to be the father. Um, so like, be, be comfortable in your skin to do everything in your power to be their ideal father, whatever that is for them. Which it sounds like you're, if you didn't hit the nail on the head, you were pretty damn close. I was trying for sure. I think it's, it just came from a place of wanting to show up for them in a way that I would have loved my father to show up. Hmm. And betting that I could figure it out because I knew I was resourceful. And that as it came to, as it relates to career. Yeah. And that after that, it. How do they need me to show up comfortable in my own skin? I'll do that. I wasn't comfortable in my own skin, um, but comfortable to show up at all mom events, like it was just moms and me, um, comfortable wearing makeup like I, it, whatever I needed to do. I needed to remind myself that this is the man that I would have loved to have shown up in my shit. My father never showed up in anything until this day. Now granted now, Kind of, um, he had a heart, uh, a stroke. Oh, so there's that. Yeah. So that's another conversation, but sorry about that. Never, ever came to anything, any of my performances, anything that was of any of interest to me, any personal, anything. So I derived it from that place of that little boy. kind of saying, this is the dad I would've loved. Mm-hmm. And just trying to figure out what that would look like in any given moment. Yeah. Does that answer your question? It does. It does. And I, I ask it because it's something that I'm constantly talking to my customers about. Right. Um, on the Fly Dad side mm-hmm. the whole premise of starting fly. Dad and I, so I, I don't mean this to be self-promotion, but I think it's No, please me. Yeah. Talk to me. It makes sense for what we're talking about. Is it, when I break it, distill it all down. Right. What is the fun, the fundamental issue that I observe in us having better, healthier nuclear families is a first and foremost, most of the time the mom is the head of household. Really, if we're being honest. Right. Has everything to held together. And many times it's like the father is like the additional child . Like they gotta kind of, they gotta pull the dad. Up and try to get them, you know? Right. There's obviously exceptions, but by and large, I feel like that's typically the dynamic, and so I look at it like, all right guys, we gotta level up. And there's a lot, even if we're here as far as partners with the, the significant other, or even if they're not together, the co-parent, even if we're para level, what we talked about at the very beginning is like having conversation, acknowledging that we need help sometimes, like not pretending like we got it all figured out because we're macho or whatever. Mm-hmm. . But there's a, when you transition from man to father, Hmm. There's, there's a lot that you have to contend with and adapt to that sh the, the fear that most men feel is very real and it can knock you down from, from the confidence that you might have built up as an independent man to now have to figure. How to be a father to this child, which a lot of times the the move is, how do I support this kid? How do I make enough money? It, it flies to finances, right? It's not, I, I don't want to minimize that, but there's a fo there's a lack of focus on like, yo, what do I need to be successful as this kid's father? How do I figure that out? What tools are there for me to support me and my journey as a father? Right? And as simple as like the diaper bag that I talked about that we created. Like that's just a small example of some of the things we're trying to do with Fly Dad to help elevate the confidence of a man as they transition into fatherhood so that they feel comfortable in their skin to be able to show up in however they think they make sense for them to show up for their kid at the end of the day, like spouse, partner to me, a secondary. Still important cuz you gotta try to make it work together, but doesn't always work, but you gotta figure out how to be the parents Right on. Regardless. So it's, I, I look at that and I think of the impact on society when you don't have a good, you know, unit, right. Uh, parental unit and all these other implications, like a lot of our issues. again, communication being a very important piece of that. And then having the accountability to then, and the support to be able to be the father that you kids deserve. I wanna say that, I think something else that helped me was a self-awareness or realizing like I have a lot of things that I need to work on. There's a lot of gap. Personal develop. Yeah, there's a lot of gaps, there's a lot of hurt, there's a lot of trauma. Um, so I had a very, like after the divorce, one of the things that I realized was I clearly didn't, wasn't the man that I thought it was. I'm incomplete. I'm clearly, I got some things I need to work on. So that was another way that, one of that I started, that was another way that I started to become a better father, is like, figure out where the gaps inside of me were. So get to get back to the earlier point, I realized like I needed to be more whole. I needed to fix some wounds to be able to show up for them better, uh, to give me the confidence to show up and not actually causing more harm than good. Cuz you know, if you don't dealing with your shit and you still show up and you're just screaming at them every given chance, you know, a helicopter para that's hovering over them and demanding that they do things your way, that kind of thing, then you, you're not doing, it wasn't, it is not gonna work out. It's still going to be a bad, bad turn out, bad result. Uh, but just trying to figure that out allowed me to show up as much as I could for them and like, Hey, whatever I'm missing, wherever I mess up today, I'm gonna work on for the next time brother, that that's, yeah, I don't even know how. I don't even know how you did that. Was it therap? Like how, tell me what steps did you take to make it all that, all that way Early on, um, I took you familiar with n p Neural linguist programming. M o p, , I forget what, that's what, uh, NLP is a, uh, it's, it's heavy in the marketing space. Um, it is neurolinguistic programming. It's supposed to be this co uh, combination of like therapy, uh, neurotherapy, uh, hypnosis and con like, it, it studies communication. When I was, was taking these course and when I was going through it, they dig into your shit and it's essentially a therapy. And that's when I started realizing like, oh crap, my dad's stuff's gonna be an issue. Ah, my own dad's stuff is going to become an issue because as I'm talking, you're living through that, that shadow, um, as much as I thought I was done. So through that process, I started to just acknowledge the pain. Um, there's some processes built into this particular field of study that, uh, allow you to even go back into your, your, your past. Take the and talk to that little boy and essentially to therapy. Right? Wow. Yeah. And address them and tell them that you are valuable, you are worthwhile. You. Loving, you're not a piece of shit, , . Um, those kinds of things. Um, and then just personal development, reading books, uh, picking up like, oh crap, I'm guilty of that. . Oh crap, I went through that. Oh, that's why I do that thing. Like, just being really honest with myself and like letting down my guard and, and being okay with not being perfect. And then realizing as if you look around, we're all kind of hurting. We're all jammed up somehow. Yeah. And, and every, I don't care how successful they are, some of them might actually be very, very successful, but they're hurting, um, in some way or another. And, and that once that was kind of clicked, like, okay, then I'm not a weirdo. I'm. One of many and I can deal along with my shit. So, uh, I have done therapy. I've literally taken some set, had about a year of it, uh, where I went consistently. Um, that was after my last major breakup. Uh, I just consistently try to figure out what I'm missing and being honest and realizing like, okay, that's a thing. It's not a, it doesn't make me less than just means that there's, there's just a gap there. There is awareness that I didn't know about, a lack of awareness. Um, and yeah, and to me that's just probably the biggest thing is. Not feeling at first that I'm very flawed because I had flawed programming. So it's only inevitable, you know, the, the upbringing we had, things we had to do to survive the, the snappiness, the, the sometimes is, is very useful to survive and, and get away and, and have people laughing so that way they don't beat you up. Um, and whatever you have to do now we have to unlearn some of those things or realize that in the right context, this is still very powerful, but in the wrong context you could be damaging your kid. Yeah. So it's just being really aware of that and not give, not being so hard on myself, cuz I, I've done everything I can to show up as best I can in the world, but especially for my daughters. And if I, if I do that, I'm a, I know I'm a good human being and I'm good. Hey man. Well sir, I have to run, I have to go 10 to my children now. Oh, so . Oh no, brother. I gotta run, I gotta run one to, to practice now. Oh goodness. Is it really that late, man? Oh, my bad. . Oh, no, no, no, no, no. We're good. We're good. Okay. Um, this was such a pleasure man. This is therapy for me, so thank you. Oh, okay. Well, conversations. Um, yeah, I appreciate you. Thank you so much for coming on. Um, this is probably the rawest conversation I've had with another man in a public forum and I'm looking forward to putting it out cause I think people can benefit from it. We're, we're all working on ourselves in some way or another. So be easy on yourself. Have grace, you said it yourself. Um, yeah, and, and don't be ashamed of it either cuz that's, that's how you get better. Yeah. Like just say, Hey, my bad, let's go, let's go fix that. Let me go address that. But know that you're still a good human being if you're trying to do the best you can. Um, and don't be afraid to apologize. When you do fuck up, bro. Just saying that people. Indeed. It's amazing how much will people will forgive if you just say, Hey, that's on me. I fucked up. Like almost a hundred percent of people are like, oh, okay. That's all I needed to hear. Yeah, they just need to be acknowledged like, yo, there was you fucked up. Acknowledge it. That's it. Well, apology goes so far and I'm like, damn, why don't we just make, why is this so hard? Ego's such a basic thing, bro. So little letter, like there's not a lot of letters in the word . You're right. At any rate, we can go on forever. I appreciate you very much, Manny. Thank you so much. I look forward to putting this out. Until next time, brother. Yeah, man. Let's stay in touch for sure, bro.

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Manny Digital

Entrepreneur

Manny "Digital" made his bones in The Bronx, NY. A son of Dominican immigrants, he grew up observing the pitfalls of his BX environment and carefully applied the lessons he picked up to set himself up for a better outcome.

One of those lessons came from his personal experience as part of a broken home. He knew early on the importance of a father's presence and how setting clear expectations with his eventual children would be the most impactful elements of building his family.

Fast forward... life ultimately connected Manny with KGB, which led to him meeting DJ EFN. Under the common bond of being fathers, these friends started an entertaining podcast called Father Hoods, where they chronicle their lives as Dads along with icons in Hip Hop like N.O.R.E., Ludacris, Bun B, actor Jerry Ferrara and many more. These Dads are also partners in FlyDadGear.com, a physical products company providing Dads with the resources and gear every Fly Dad needs.