Christopher Lochhead Follow Your Different™ Podcast is a celebration of people, ideas and companies that stand out. A leader in the category “dialogue podcasts,” it feels like eavesdropping on a surprisingly captivating, candid, insightful, no-BS and conversation. Lochhead features legends whose names you will know and everyday legends who you’ll love getting to know. New York Times Bestselling author Hal Elrod calls it “one of the best podcasts of all time”, NBA Legend Bill Walton calls Lochhead “an exploding star – a quasar across the sky", The Marketing Journal says he’s “one of the best minds in marketing” and The Economist says he’s, “off-putting to some”.
A Love Letter To The United States of America
This episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different is a love letter to America.
I recently posted something on LinkedIn and on social media about the court's decision to overturn Roe vs. Wade, and I wanted to share that with you and reflect on it with you for a moment.
So, let's talk about America.
Roe v. Wade
People are saying this ruling put abortion back in the hands of the states.
Sort of, but not really.
It puts it back where it belongs in our hands. You and me get to decide what the future will be by voting.
A poll with 235,613 responses says that 58% support women's rights to choose. Now, if the Democrats pick up seats in November, it will in large part demonstrate what Americans think about some combination of the abortion issue. And broadly, the Democratic agenda and how the Democrats have been performing in the White House and in Washington.
With Biden at 38% approval, it seems very likely that the Dems will pick up seats in November. If the predicted red wave hits Washington, it will for sure tell us that some combination of dislike for Biden, the GOP’s ideas resonating. and pro-life momentum are things that Americans are focused on.
Continue to have Meaningful Dialogue
Whether you're currently celebrating or reverberating over the road decision. It's important to underscore this is how it's supposed to work.
We argue, we debate and hopefully we even listen radical idea, right? to each other. We come to our own conclusions, and we vote for candidates who most reflect our beliefs. Hating someone because they disagree with you might be the biggest stupid of all.
Now, to be clear, I am pro-choice. And I could tell you why if you cared, and I respect that pro-life people truly believe they are doing what's best what's right. And I know and love people who I know to be legendary, very good people who are pro-life. I just disagree with them. That's okay. Steel sharpens steel. This is how it's supposed to work. Please participate in thoughtful dialogue. And let's all do some thinking, then let's vote.
So that was the post and it seems to have blown up and hopefully caused some thought for a conversation. Some people have commented No, this is not how it's supposed to work. And they have an opinion about why that's the case. They might be right. But at a very high level.
The difference between democracy and insanity is we dialogue. We vote. We create leaders and create laws and then we live by them. What we don't do is hate each other. And we don't fight with each other physically. That's called anarchy. And so I think what this tells all of us is, democracy is a participation sport.
To hear more of Christopher Lochhead’s love letter to the United States of America, download and listen to this episode.
We hope you enjoyed this episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different! Christopher loves hearing from his listeners. Feel free to email him, connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and subscribe on iTunes!
Confessions of a Sociopath with M.E. Thomas
On this remarkable episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different, we talk with M.E. Thomas about psychopathy, and how you can be in a relationship that works with a psychopath.
M.E. Thomas is a pseudonym of the bestselling author of Confessions of a Sociopath. She’s a lawyer, musician, and now a teacher. She is among the first psychopaths or sociopaths to come out of the closet, and share her life and experience.
This episode will have you thinking deeply about your identity, relationships, and the masks that we all wear. So stay tuned.
M.E. Thomas on Knowing she was “Different”
The conversation started with the question of identity. Specifically, about when M.E. Thomas found out she was “Different”.
“I always knew that I was different. But I had so many things that they’d be different, I just assumed it was one those – like, I was raised in a big Mormon family, so I grew up with five siblings. We just had weird idiosyncrasies. My dad was kind of a crazy guy. Even now, they call him Einstein because he wears his hair, kind of like white and crazy, and his eyebrows were long and curly. He says, he thinks that makes him look distinguished.” – M.E. Thomas
Aside from this, there were a lot of things that people would think weird about her. But it came off most of the times as precocious and charming as a child, and cool and collected growing up.
M.E. Thomas on Not Experiencing the Same Things
Another way M.E. Thomas knew she was different from others was when she and the other kids her age hit puberty. Simply put, she wasn’t experiencing the same things that others were being self-conscious or worried about.
“During puberty, everybody was kind of losing their collective minds. And I was just like, “I don’t get it”. I didn’t get the self-consciousness, and I didn’t get the awkwardness. And I didn’t get the kind of like, “we’re going through some sort of new identity”. I kind of didn’t get that, although I got it in a way because I would kind of choose a new identity every day for whatever situation I was in.” – M.E. Thomas
Looking back, M.E. Thomas was kind of relieved that she didn’t go through all that, citing a Reddit page that showed teenagers and all the stupid things they did and wear growing up.
How to Work the Social System
M.E. Thomas muses that she was glad that she didn’t go through the same experience, as she’s heard stories of how people were both very happy and unhappy during those times in their life. She particularly calls out peer pressure, which is probably the number one reason teenagers do stupid things for stupid reasons.
She herself wasn’t subjected to peer pressure, because she admits that she already knew how to work the social system even then. Given the cool demeanor she portrays, she was easily part of every social circle and friends with different groups. Though she does say that being that much of a social butterfly should’ve been an indicator of a personality disorder.
To learn more about M.E. Thomas and her experiences growing up, download and listen to this episode.
M. E. Thomas (a pseudonym) is the author of Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight. (Penguin Random House)
She is a former law professor who has written extensively on music copyright issues, a current California attorney, and the founder of a non-profit. She is also, most recently, a professional musician.
Connect with M.E. Thomas!
Website | Twitter | More about the Author
More about M.E. Thomas
276 The Voice In Your Head, Why It Matters, & How To Harness It with Psychologist & Author of “Chatter” Ethan Kross
On this episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different, we talk about those voices in your head with our award-winning guest, Dr. Ethan Kross. Who knows, you might learn something useful from listening to it.
Dr. Ethan Kross is an award-winning psychologist and professor at the University of Michigan and the Ross School of Business. He has a new book out called Chatter: the voice in your head, why it matters and how to harness it. Bestselling author Adam Grant says, “this book is going to fundamentally change some of the most important conversations in your life, the ones you have with yourself.”
So if you want to know how you can work with those voices in your head to make your life better, stay tuned to this episode.
Ethan Kross on the Voices in your head
The conversation starts off with the topic of Ethan Kross’ new book, Chatter. Ethan explains that we all have an inner voice, which is the ability to silently use language to reflect on our lives.
“it's a tool of the mind. It's a tool that that distinguishes us from every single other animal species. You use language silently in your head to do all sorts of things like, simulate and plan for the future. You use this inner voice to do something I find to be magical, which is tell stories about our experiences in this world. Stories that help us understand who we are.” – Ethan Kross
According to Ethan, there are times when this inner voice we possess doesn’t work so well.
“Sometimes when you experience adversity, you reflexively tried to use this tool to think through a problem, but you don't come up with a clear solution. You end up for lack of a better term spinning, worry, ruminating catastrophizing. And that's what I call chatter.” – Ethan Kross
Chatter sometimes takes the form of an inner critic. Sometimes, it’s a self-disparaging voice. Sometimes it's an inner monologue filled with anger and aggression. But the idea here is that you're just getting stuck in this negative thought loop, and you can't break free.
Ethan Kross on Metacognition
We bring up the topic of “thinking about thinking”, and Ethan shares his thoughts on the matter. For Ethan, most people actually do a lot of thinking about thinking, or metacognition.
“Basically, Metacognition refers to exactly what you're talking about: thinking about thinking. And I think we spend a lot of time doing this in ways that create misery. And, like, when we're worried about stuff we keep on, you know, we start worrying, like, think about what worry is, there's something in the future that you're concerned about. At some point, you start worrying about the fact that you're worrying.” – Ethan Kross
He then used sleep as an example. At first, it’s simple: you sleep when you are tired. But as we think about other things like “are we getting enough sleep,” and the effects of not staying up late, etc. We start to worry about too many hypothetical things in our head, and we, ironically, lose sleep over it.
To hear more from Ethan Kross and how to channel your inner voice to be more productive in life, download and listen to this episode.
Ethan Kross, PhD, is one of the world's leading experts on controlling the conscious mind. An award-winning professor at the University of Michigan and the Ross School of Business, he is the director of the Emotion & Self Control Laboratory.
He has participated in policy discussion at the White House and has been interviewed on CBS Evening News, Good Morning America, Anderson Cooper Full Circle, and NPR's Morning Edition. His pioneering research has been featured in The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New England Journal of Medicine, and Science.
He completed his BA at the University of Pennsylvania and his PhD at Columbia University.
Sonic Brand & Why You Need One with Emmy™Award-Winning Sonic Branding Category Queen Audrey Arbeeny
If you’ve ever watched the Olympics, gone to a Major League game, or even turned on your Xbox, chances are you’ve seen our guest’s great work. On this episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different, we have a dialogue with Audrey Arbeeny, the Category Queen of Sonic Branding.
Audrey Arbeeny presented the discipline of Sonic Branding, way back in 1993 at the Design Management Institute in Amsterdam. Now that Sonic Branding has exploded, particularly as digital products have, it has been become a giant category across all kinds of areas marketing, branding, product design, and experience design in the arts world and the film to entertainment world.
So if you are interested about Sonic Branding, and how it blitzed through the competition, stay tuned to this episode.
Audrey Arbeeny on Sonic Branding
The conversation starts off with defining what Sonic Branding is. Audrey has this to say on the matter:
“I believe what you're doing is the same thing as when we did the original Major League Soccer, Anthem, and we do our Sonic Branding. The deputy commissioner in the interview said, he heard from player after player that when they heard that song, it put them in the right frame of mind it put them in a place that they wanted to be in, and it prepared them to get ready for the game.
I have certain songs I play also, when I need to get in a certain frame of mind. And that's what Sonic Branding is. You want to get to that emotional center of the brain that triggers play.” – Audrey Arbeeny
If you’re wondering if there is a word for that, yes there is. It’s called Biomusicology, and it covers how sounds and music can affect our brain and biology. Sometimes, music can even evoke physical reactions from us, as seen in the revelry in anthems, or that welling feeling you might get while listening to an orchestra.
“We're a vibratory system. And that's what it is. And from as early as time as you could remember, that's what sound did. It connected people. It communicated and it made people feel, feel physically emotionally connected.” – Audrey Arbeeny
Audio Brain Advocates for Health and Well-being
Audrey shares a personal experience where music and hearing familiar sounds in someone’s vicinity had helped people ease their pain and their well-being.
So while Sonic Branding is being used on all these global brands, Audrey also hopes to advocate the use of music and different sounds to promote health and well-being to everyone.
“Yes, we do all these global brands? We've been music supervisors for 10 Olympics for NBC Olympics. That's 25 years. Yes, we've done great things like that. But we've also done a lot in health care. And I've done a lot of research in health and well-being. And I've worked with kids that were deaf and blind, and done music therapy with them.
Because when you're in that situation, nobody really takes the time to make sure you're enjoying that meal and spends a lot of time they have a lot of kids to take care of. So that's my North Star. That's my passion point. And audio brain has done a lot of a lot of pro bono work in that area.” – Audrey Arbeeny
To hear more from Audrey Arbeeny, Sonic Branding, and how music can help your well-being, download and listen to this episode.
As Owner and Emmy Award-Winning Executive Producer/ Creative Director for Audiobrain, a globally recognized sonic branding boutique dedicated to the intentional development of music and sound, Audrey Arbeeny has realized her dream of combining her lifelong love of music and science with proven business skills. Audrey oversees Audiobrain’s projects from start to finish, coordinating logistics, strategy, experience design, resources, and talent. In addition, Audrey oversees Audiobrain’s ongoing research in areas of psychoacoustics a...
How To Make Money In A Recession: 5 Steps To Create Demand For Your Product, Service, Or Platform
Welcome to a very special episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different, where we talk about how to make money in a recession.
In times that are challenging, one of the greatest things we all can do is contribute what we can contribute. Given that it looks like we're about to be in a recession, what Eddie Yoon Nicolas Cole, and I aka the Category Pirates decided to do was to write a new mini book newsletter. It’s called How To Make Money In A Recession: Five steps to create demand for your product, service or platform.
We elected to make the written version of this free. There'll be a link to it at the end of this show notes. So consider this episode, a mini book audio read.
We are in a Recession
Dear Friend, Subscriber, and Category Pirate,
We are in a recession.
(Not officially, but it is not looking good.)
Stocks are down. Startup valuations have plummeted. Bitcoin and Ethereum have lost more than 50% of their total value since their respective highs back in November, 2021. And sentiment around Silicon Valley is that the next 12-18 months are going to be challenging for companies looking to raise money.
But where there is chaos, there is opportunity.
Approximately 10% of companies get stronger in downturns. And you can’t be in the 10% unless you do some serious thinking.
Through the category lens, downturns are simple to understand—and have a clear path to navigate. When times get tough, businesses, governments, households, and individuals all do the same thing: they create two lists.
* “Must Haves”
* “Nice To Haves”
Then they start cutting the “Nice To Haves” to lower costs—as a direct response to their revenue / income / buying power shrinking.
The Question Every Business Should Ask
Which means the seminal question is: what makes people put some categories/brands/products on the “Must Have” list versus the “Nice To Have” list?
(Everything we value, we’ve been taught to value.)
The difference between a dumb idea and a great one, or the difference between useful products and useless ones is the perception we have based on what we have been taught. (Don’t forget: pet rocks used to be in demand.)
The trick is to get your product/service/platform on the “Must Have” list, and to be as high up on the list as possible. Because the higher the category is on the hierarchy of perceived value in the consumer’s mind, the greater the likelihood they will keep buying from you.
Which is why savvy leaders market the category in downturns.
Because people make their lists by category first, and brand second.
The Net-Positive Effects of Recession
Elon Musk was a guest on the All In podcast and summarized the net-positive effects of recessions well:
“Recessions are not necessarily a bad thing. I’ve been through a few of them. What tends to happen, if you have a boom that goes on for too long, you get misallocation of capital. It starts raining money on fools, basically. Any dumb thing gets money. At some point, it gets out of control… and the b******t companies go bankrupt and the ones that are building useful products are prosperous.”
When most people hear the word “recession,” they imagine the housing crisis of 2008 or the dot-com bubble in the late 90s—and ...
A New Way To Think with World’s #1 Management Thinker Roger Martin
On this episode of Christopher Lochhead: Follow Your Different, we have a radically different dialogue about thinking with the legendary Roger Martin – a man who has been called, “the world's number one management thinker” by former Ford CEO Jim Hackett.
Roger Martin is a Professor Emeritus at the Rotman School of Management at the University of Toronto, where he served as Dean from 98 to 2013, and as Institutional Director of the Martin Prosperity Interest Institute from 2013 to 2019. In 2013, he was also named Global Dean of the Year.
In this remarkable conversation, we dig into the definition of thinking. We also discuss the difference between what Roger calls reflexive versus reflective thinking, and why thinking is a meta skill. So if you are interested on expanding the way you think, stay and listen to learn more.
Roger Martin on Thinking about Thinking
The conversation starts off on the topic of thinking about thinking, and if it’s weird to do so. Roger offers his thoughts on the matter:
“I don't think so, no. But you know, I am surprised at the number of people who seem to not think about how they think – they just think. And then when something kind of bad happens, they're kind of flummoxed. The ones who are more inclined to think about how they're thinking are more likely to say, “well, maybe I wasn't thinking about that the best way I could, what would be a different way to think about it?” ” – Roger Martin
The Definition of Thinking
Before heading into deeper topics, we discuss the definition of thinking. Roger gives an explanation of his definition of thinking below:
“I see it as the process of reflecting on your world against a model you have of it. So you'd be thinking, if you say, that person just smiled at me as we walked by each other. So that was stimulus to your senses. And to think about it, you have to have some kind of a model in your head interpreting it. So you would say, when the corners of the lips go up like that, it generally means that that person is kind of happy, or is favorably disposed toward me, and not they have a nervous tic. But that could be another interpretation of it. But you have some kind of model that says, “this is my method of interpreting what is happening to me.” “ – Roger Martin
The thing is, other people might not have the same model as you do, unless you are privy that information. This often results in clashes in models, or a misinterpretation of other people’s model because they are unfamiliar, or radically different from yours.
That is where thinking about thinking plays a role.
Reflexive versus Reflective Thinking
Roger was then presented with a thought about the current way of thinking:
“We live in a world today that what that says that what most people call thinking is actually the mental retweeting of something they heard that they like, that often confirms and existing thought. And that existing thought was something they were taught to think, ergo, what most people call thinking today is actually not thinking.”
Roger’s response is that conceptually, that is correct. But in a way, it is also another type of thinking.
“What you describe is also thinking, but it is a much more reflexive form of thinking, then reflective form of thinking. So it's sort of a bit of a, like a reflexive pattern recognition. But I don't object to calling non reflective thinking to be just barely thinking or maybe not thinking at all.” – Roger Martin
To learn more about Roger Martin & the different kinds of thinking, download and listen to this episode.
Roger L. Martin is Professor Emeritus at the Rotman School of Management at University of Toronto, where he served as Dean from 1998 to 2013, and as Institute Director of the Martin Prosperity Institute from 2013 to 2019.
Contrarian malarkey. Can’t get enough.
Between the podcast, Play Bigger book, and Category Pirates Mini-Books… paradigm shifted.
Real. Subscribe. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Most podcasts are carefully edited. Not this one...the conversation that you hear is the conversation that was had. Subscribe to this one YOU WON’T be sorry nor broke. Chris brings on the guests, asks the deeper questions & pulls no punches that can change your entire life. All you have to do is apply it.
People seem to like this, that’s pretty cool