#54 – Freedom = Responsibility

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Ep. 54 - Podcast Thumbnail

Do you ever wonder if we deserve the level of freedom we enjoy? With all that’s been going on in the world, with society and culture being influential in how we make use of the freedom that’s available to us, there’s always that risk of abusing that very same freedom. 

What does responsibility have anything to do with freedom? In this episode, the dynamic duo of Andrew and Sammy go in detail about how these two intertwine, and why we should all be aware of it.

  • God has the most miserable public relations ever because of the people that represent God
  • There’s something about responsibility that makes us want to avoid it 
  • Correlation of responsibility and pain 
  • Deep, innate need of all humans to be needed on some level 
  • Inability to grow without other people, you grow in relationships and your commitment to the relationship will define how responsible you feel about that relationship 
  • Being fearful of marriage and being responsible for the outcome of that relationship 
  • Willingness to acknowledge responsibility has a huge effect on the success of an individual’s growth 
  • Freedom plus responsibility equals an increased level of enjoyment and more freedom 
  • Freedom without responsibility is a declining amount of freedom 
  • Ownership is not a matter of signatures and documents, ownership is the look in a person’s eye when they’re dealing with the thing that they are taking responsibility for 
  • Our experiences are a direct result of our own choices 
  • When we’re willing to be responsible, then we can actually get the things that we want. 
  • Something in you grows, and you receive benefit from that 

Episode Transcript:

Andrew Love: Welcome back to Love, Life, and Legacy Podcast dedicated to helping you navigate these hyper-sexualized times of ours and enjoy life and when and be free and frolic in the sand or in the mountains or wherever you happen to be, can frolic freely. And in today’s episode, Sammy and I are talking about freedom and responsibility, because there’s a lot of sayings. You can see memes on Facebook, you can read all sorts of bumper stickers that freedom is on the other side of responsibility and all this stuff. And it sounds like it kind of makes sense. But actually, we don’t deeply think about the meaning of this. And we definitely don’t always live by this. If you’ve ever complained or blame somebody else for your problems. And this episode is for you, where you can reclaim your life and discover how you can be totally free. When you learn how to take responsibility. It’s not boring. Okay, I know this topic can be boring, but we made it fun. And if you get this, you can have freedom. Free of charge, free freedom, or your money back. Welcome back to another exciting day here in Love Life and Legacy. Come on Sammy, let’s go Love Life and Legacy.

Andrew Love: Love, Life, and Legacy. Sammy is a bionic man. Today is an exciting day because we’re gonna unravel, it’s not a myth busting episode. It’s figuring out what this slogan means- episode, because we’ve all heard it a million billion times and it is thus, there is no freedom without responsibility. And up until this point in history, responsibility has had the worst PR. I think the worst PR in the world, public relations marketing is God. God has had the most miserable public relations ever, because of people that represent God. Second, close, close. Second is responsibility because it just seems like homework. It’s like broccoli, I’ve never seen any posters trying to make broccoli sexy. Also responsibilities, just like how to take responsibility. But if that statement is true, then all freedom that you seek in your life: financial freedom, mental freedom, emotional freedom, relational freedom is on the other side of taking responsibility. So we want to talk about this and make it make sense so that we can sell it to ourselves on a daily basis. We know how important it is in the recovery process for anybody out there struggling with porn, but also in terms of creating a thriving relationship. There’s certain elements that are required and obviously, responsibilities way up there at the top of the list. So what do you think, Sammy, responsibilities is something you wake up and it’s like on your vision board, it just says responsibility.

Sammy Uyama: Yes, just like wanting to go to the Golden Corral of responsibility and just keep as much as I can on my plate. This is what I look forward to daily. 

Andrew Love: By the way, this is a second Golden Corral reference in two weeks that I think Sammy’s secretly jonesing because they don’t have anything like that in Korea. I think if it ever landed in Korea, the whole country would just fall apart.

Sammy Uyama: So growing up in a wholesome southern state, it’s like Golden Corral is the only appropriate place to celebrate anything. And so that’s just where we would go for whatever, any reason, we need to do something fancy that is called grounds.

Andrew Love: So it’s like your comfort place. It’s your happy place.

Sammy Uyama: Yes.

Andrew Love: Got it. So you’re saying responsibility is the buffet of freedom? What do you say?

Sammy Uyama: I just look forward to waking up to responsibility morning, and I was *brushing off the back that I want to go to be Golden Corral of responsibility and get as much of it as I can.

Andrew Love: Stuff your mouth with responsibility? Well, let’s look at it. So let’s look at it in terms of just like an individual and what your life would look like, without responsibility. Because honestly, we were talking a little bit before this and I believe that we have deep in our bone marrow of our beliefs, this vision that the perfect life is a life without responsibility where you’re just amply rich, you’re insanely rich, to the point where you don’t have to think about money or worry about money. You just sit on a beach and eat caviar, or whatever your dream is. And then everybody just serves you and it’s basically you’re a king or a queen. And I think that’s messed with us because I’ve just heard so many examples of different people who made it to that level like Elon Musk and Mark Cuban. They cashed out on businesses and a lot of people actually go through deep existential crises when they sell their companies for hundreds of millions of dollars. It’s like they have no meaning anymore, no purpose and these people are typically very miserable. And they end up starting another company within a year. I know Mark Cuban traveled the world, he had hundreds of millions of dollars to just spend on whatever he wanted. And he was miserable, he’s freefalling. I’m just saying, for some reason, it’s been this idea that’s been sold to us. As sold so much that we are aspiring to something that doesn’t even work. You know what I mean, which is like a life without responsibility. Did you buy into that? I mean, you grew up in America, did you ever have that dream where you could just be a potato on a beach? 

Sammy Uyama: Yeah, I think it’s something that doesn’t matter where you grew up, it’s when you go through stressful times, it’s a really appealing fantasy, or appealing ideal. The things that are stressing you out is usually some form of responsibility of some deadline to meet, or there’s some expectation of you, and you’re just scrambling to try to fulfill all of those. And then the idea of not having those, in those moments is really appealing, for sure. And it’s also I think, the other thing about responsibility that makes it something that we would want to avoid is what it confronts us with. Because when we get that we’re responsible, then we have to also acknowledge that we have a say and how something goes. We have some level of impact and that’s a whole nother thing. There’s a lot, so much resistance to that, like if something bad happens, stay down responsible for it. I don’t think it’s a matter of blame, it’s because it’s your fault, right? But the fact of the matter is we do have a say, in how that happened and that outcome. There’s something about us, our fallen nature or human nature, humanists, and that we don’t want to admit that, and a temptation to try to shift that to someone else. 

Andrew Love: It’s very appealing. Yeah. And I think that’s a huge, when you look, when you talk to somebody who’s struggling with porn, it’s always intensified. Their addiction or their habit is intensified when they have some big looming responsibility, right? Exam time, huge-like spike in use. I don’t know, in their work when their boss is breathing down their neck, I know some guy that’s in like a coding boot camp. And that’s when he struggles the most is because he feels inadequate, he’s falling behind in the work. And he just feels like I don’t know what to do, things are slipping away. But he feels responsible because he signed up for this thing and then all of a sudden, he’s struggling his brains out. So there’s a definite correlation to responsibility and pain, which is why it’s interesting that responsibility is also a direct link to freedom, that they’re all very much connected.

Sammy Uyama: Yeah, so how about you start going to that, because I’m actually still missing the link. It conceptually makes sense but it’s getting really real with it. So how, you just described a Mark Cuban or sitting on the beach, does that sound like some level of freedom? So how is it possible that freedom is impossible without responsibility?

Andrew Love: So it’s the deep human need of being wanted. I had this really deep conversation with my wife last week, that’s a week ago, where I said, more than anything in the world, I just want to be wanted. I mean, we’re married, so we are with each other by contract, right? But I don’t care about that, contracts are just a piece of paper, it’s more like an agreement to constantly work on ourselves to be able to take responsibility for loving the other person to the degree that they’re needed. And so the whole thing was of being wanted, is this, we want to be wanted, we need to be needed. There’s an 80’s song about that. At the core of it, that proves to me that we’re sentient beings with souls, that you can have all the stuff in the world. But if nobody wants you, or cares about your opinion, or calls you up looking for your advice, then a part of you is really empty. And when you have nobody, that’s if you’re responsible for nobody or nothing, you stop feeling needed in this world. A part of you starts to shut down, a very necessary part of you, which is why having kids is so challenging, but at the same time rewarding, because you’re responsible for the outcome of those humans. So it’s some deep innate need that all humans have, is to be needed on some level. And of course, there’s varying degrees of that. It doesn’t mean that we all have to be a Mark Cuban, but he’s the kind of King of capitalism of that paradigm but there’s the family structure. There’s society like why do people still form groups and meet up? Out here, I’m still in Bali, and there’s little groups that meet up that have the same kind of scooters and they go for rides on Saturdays. Why did people form these tribes, is because you want to be a part of a group and you really desperately hope that if you miss a Saturday with your little group that they notice and they call you up and they say, how are you doing? This desire to be needed. But if you are a part of a group, then it also comes with the other side of it, which is you have certain responsibilities, there’s certain things that you don’t do when you’re part of certain groups.

Sammy Uyama: Not even at that level yet, but individually, it is such a nice feeling to be wanted and needed. But then as soon as you’re needed, then you’re dependent on for something. So you’re on the line for following through with that.

Andrew Love: Absolutely. And it seems to bring the best out of you, that’s how growth happens. There’s no growth in a cave by yourself. There’s self exploration, which is important, but that’s the beginning point to the stepping stone of learning about other people. And you cannot grow without other people, you grow in relationships and your commitment to the relationship will define how responsible you feel to that relationship. And so, even to ourselves, that’s something that a lot of people have never committed to, is how committed am I to my own growth? How committed, I’m asking you listening right now, how committed are you to your own intellectual growth, your own emotional growth, spiritual growth? Are you, is it just a general: Yes, I am? Or is it, have you made specific goals? Or do you have accountability in these areas? And then if so, then you feel responsible to grow? So now we’re coming up with words, so there’s commitment that directly links to responsibility. And responsibility is also linked to potential misery. There’s a lot. There’s a lot of stakes with responsibility, which is why I think a lot of people are fearful of it. Why people are so fearful of marriage these days, because you’re responsible for the outcome of that relationship, at least 50% of it. And that’s too much for a lot of people to handle these days, because we’re seeing the stats are not so, I heard recently that Southern California is up to 70% divorce rates during the pandemic. So when you hear numbers like that, it’s kind of like you don’t want the responsibility for having to say, this didn’t work out, so a lot of people just opt out. And then there’s no, the freedom on the other end of that is, well imagine you found somebody that you can really build a love with that is unparalleled. And then you enjoy a love freedom that you cannot experience by yourself and isolation but then you also have responsibility for being there for that person, when they’re being a jerk to you or when they’re vomiting in a car. That happened to me recently with my wife. I couldn’t just kick her out of the car and be like, well peace, I’m going to find a wife that doesn’t vomit when we’re on road trips.

Sammy Uyama: Absolutely. This whole conversation, when I think about it in relation to sex, in relation to porn, porn recovery, that I want to talk about sex. Maybe what’s real responsibility, when you’re in a relationship with a person, I do want to talk about that. But with both porn, it’s getting that, I’m the one that is in control of this behavior. So we have a lot of people that come to us wanting support in the area of recovery with their porn masturbation issues. And there’s these correlations that are so common, and one of them is like the severity of someone’s struggle with porn is very correlated to their avoidance of responsibility. And the more responsible a person is willing to get for their life, it’s not even about willing to do. I think a person, the level of responsibility they have is consistent, it actually doesn’t change. But their willingness to acknowledge their responsibility, the level they’re willing to do that has a huge effect on the success of their growth in their recovery. And it totally shifts the person’s way of thinking of and which directs the actions that they’ll take by someone who is coming from a place of, I’m responsible for my well being, acts very differently than someone who is waiting for someone else to solve their problems.

Andrew Love: Yes, I mean, you’re just saying really triggered this kind of basic equation in my mind that freedom as a starting point, because we all have the freedom to do whatever we want, basically. At this point in America, it seems like so, this might not be up for debate in the future but for now we can essentially do whatever we want. But freedom plus responsibility equals an increased level of enjoyment and more freedom. Whereas freedom without responsibility is a declining amount of freedom that you will experience over time. And using this as an example, if you have all the time freedom in the world and you don’t use that freedom responsibly, you’re going to end up in a very difficult situation. So if you just end up watching porn a lot, you’re going to have less freedom in your heart, you have less freedom in your mind, you’re gonna feel chained to this thing that’s taking up so much of your time. Whereas, if you deal with this, if you deal with your porn habit, and you get better at using your freedom of time, you end up having more freedom in your mind when somebody calls you up and says, hey do you have time to talk and say, yes I have the bandwidth because I have freedom in my mind. I have freedom in my heart to take care of another person, you don’t have that freedom, emotionally, if you haven’t been taking care of yourself. So it’s like, freedom plus responsibility equals more freedom for yourself and for everybody else in your life. It’s an exponential model of freedom, and is only one responsibility in the equation. Without the responsibility, then it’s kind of like an erosion of freedom over time, if that makes sense. So that’s on the individual, on the basis of being just by yourself, and what you do with your own time, freedom, energy, freedom, and so on and so forth. The food, I think a lot of people don’t know that when they live on their own, they are all of a sudden confronted with the option that they could eat hamburgers all day every day. 

Sammy Uyama: I think that’s the fantasy, is that you just eat tricks and cocoa puffs on breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 

Andrew Love: And that’s diminishing freedom will fall over you because you’ll feel more and more gross, you’ll have less and less real energy. It’s going to impact more and more areas of your life. So it’s a diminishing return of, if you use that freedom to eat whatever you want. So it’s like every every aspect of your life, but that’s just as a single person that when you include another person and you’re in a relationship, then you have responsibility to that relationship. And you’re either using that responsibility to feed the relationship and create more freedom, so your couple can be happier, blah, blah, blah. And then when you have kids, it’s like, oh my God, the responsibilities never end. But if you haven’t trained yourself to embrace responsibility as a positive thing than your, everything just seems like a burden. It’s not like a responsibility, it’s a duty. Like, oh I got to take my kids to soccer. Well that’s your kids, that’s your responsibility, you want them to be happy, then enjoy it. Enjoy it, take ownership over it. I think those are synonymous, ownership and responsibility are very much aligned. I remember Father talking about, the true owner of something is somebody who loves it the most. It takes the best care.

Sammy Uyama: I read a really cool quote about ownership recently. Paraphrase, I don’t remember the exact words, but along the lines of: Ownership is not a matter of signatures and documents, ownership is the look in a person’s eye when they’re dealing with the thing that they are taking responsibility for.

Andrew Love: Sure, over the long term because I know a lot of people who see a Lamborghini, and they have that look in their eye, but they don’t want to pay that. Even the gas bill on it.

Sammy Uyama: Right. Right. But just in the context. Just responsibility, taking responsibility, it’s what allows us to, I think it’s just a more, it just creates a context for us to live that I actually have a say in the things, the spheres of my life. And that just totally transforms the way a person lives, and the way they go about raising their children, the way that they deal with their marriage, their health, all the important areas, their career, the finances. And everything I’m experiencing right now is a direct result of my own choices, and I’m responsible for it. That I mean, a very hard place to come to, so that’s why there’s not a lot of people who are very successful all around, in every one of these areas. It’s so innately ingrained in us for whatever reason, to try to avoid that or to try to blame something else or to blame circumstance.

Andrew Love: It’s just so convenient and easy to blame others. But I mean, again like I said to you before this, this recording was, I’m really working on that with two of my three kids right now, which is taking ownership over your emotional state at any given time. And I never forced them to change their emotion but my seven year old, often if he’s really angry, I’m like, do you want to be angry right now? And if he says no, then I’ll say, what do you want to do because you’re choosing to stay angry? Do you need to go, get an old run around? Do you need to just be by yourself for a bit, and then having this conversation is very insightful because a lot of times we say, I am angry. And so you are the embodiment thing, but no, you’re choosing to hold on to the emotion of anger, and it’s coursing through your brain and your body and all this. So even on that level, when you look at yourself, you always have a choice. Moment to moment on how you interpret life and you’re responsible for your emotional state. Nobody else is responsible for your emotional state. You cannot always control circumstances, but you can control how you experience those. And even little kids can do that, and so we can do that. You got to train yourself though, because our immediate response, you’re right, is to blame other people or to blame the situation and say, oh this thing is making me feel this way. It’s like, no you are you, you’re independent of this thing. So what do you want to feel?

Sammy Uyama: So Andrew, right now the words that you’re saying, I don’t like the way that they’re making me feel. And so you need to do something about that.

Andrew Love: Yeah, yeah, yeah. You need to change you, because I don’t like how I feel.

Sammy Uyama: So basically, it’s when we become, when we’re willing to be responsible, then we can actually get the things that we want. Because I mean, no one’s gonna give them to us. And that’s just what’s missing is the willingness to be, cause in the matter regarding that, whatever that thing is. And you’re talking earlier about people wanting freedom without responsibility or wanting any benefit or some, whatever result without responsibility for it, that fantasy. I think I remember like Jordan Peterson talking about that, at some point where that’s like the Peter Pan syndrome, where you have the fantasy, where you want the perks of being an adult without any other spot. Neverland, where all these kids live forever, and they never grew up. And that’s speaking to the social consciousness, wanting to actually have that, but it’s impossible. It is a fantasy in the end, and it’s not related to any of the realities of how life functions.

Andrew Love: And also what will bring you ultimate joy. It’s not connected to that, because the joy is in the responsibility. That’s the thing when you man up or woman up, and you level up your capacity in some way, your mental, emotional capacity, like somebody’s really difficult, and they’re being self destructive, but you take responsibility for that person. You love them in some way, when nobody else will. Something in you grows, and you benefit from that. Same with when you push that phone away, and you say, no I’m going to use my time more productively, you feel better for it. There’s always a reward and that’s the internal growth aspect that you can’t hack. It’s growth, it takes effort, but it’s good effort, and it’s the stuff that will end you in a very good place. And also, to your point, I just want to mention, some people are given the result without the process and inevitably, it falls through their fingers because you have to become a person that can hold the thing, whatever it is. That most, the vast majority of lottery winners are severely depressed within three to five years of winning the lottery because they don’t have what it takes to be that wealthy. It’s a process, it’s an emotional process. And marriage, you can’t skip through the personal growth phase and have a healthy marriage, you got to grow. It’s all connected so that personal growth is taking responsibility for yourself, first and foremost. And then the more free you are, the more responsibility you can take for others, which sounds like an indictment. It sounds like a prison sentence. Like, oh I have more freedom so I’m going to take more responsibility. It seems like a paradox, but it’s actually, that’s what ends up happening is that those who are the most free, end up taking the most responsibility. And they’re, in turn, even more free than they were before.

Sammy Uyama: And I think people, whatever reaction that they have to hearing that, it’s probably coming from just the context of wherever they’re at. And from the context of: I’m barely keeping my own head above water, the idea of worrying about other people is very intimidating, or what we’re talking about is just imagine a completely different paradigm of living, where you’ve got to be  responsible for yourself so much to the point that you have the capacity to actually begin to care for other people. That is really incredible.

Andrew Love: And we see it, time and again with High Noon because when somebody is going through their own recovery process, they will inevitably get to a point where they’ll say, hey can I give back in some way? In the beginning, they just needed to take care of themselves, and that’s actually a really good thing. That’s why we don’t really ask for anything in return, in the beginning, just you take care of yourself, you show up for the weekly calls, you do the work, and then eventually you’re creating more freedom in your life to take responsibility for others. So that’s why, basically all of our facilitators now have been through the program before. They etched out space in themselves to be able to take care of other people but it was a process, they didn’t start as facilitators, the vast majority of them didn’t. They started out as participants who worked on themselves first and then they created this space and the freedom to be able to take responsibility for others. So we’ve seen this in real time happen again and again, and it’s a process, definitely.

Sammy Uyama: I don’t know anything else to say about responsibility and freedom.

Andrew Love: Well, if anybody out there is really inspired by this, please write a song or make a beautiful work of art or something that helps to sell the idea of responsibility, because it’s not sexy. But it can be made sexy, I think we could resell it and reshape it. And it needs to be, because as we can see, we’re reaching this critical mass of the dichotomy of people who blame or people who take responsibility, and those who are blaming the world around them are suffering so much. They’re really drowning right now and they need help. But it’s just because responsibility really doesn’t look so attractive, especially when you’re struggling, so if we can help in any way to make it look more appealing, please let us know.

Sammy Uyama: Absolutely. That one, some people are working to make responsibility more sexy. Aretha Franklin wrote that song. 

Andrew Love: That’s respect, not responsibility.

Sammy Uyama: Yeah, my mistake.

Andrew Love: I think if she wanted to respect, you could have taken more responsibility. That’s what I’m saying. All the good stuff happens when you take responsibility. So anyway, sorry, Aretha Franklin. I know you’re our number one fan and our biggest donator, but thank you. Thank you guy for listening. If you guys have any questions, as always, please reach out to us. We are happy to continue these conversations and we love you. We just want to help you, we want to help ourselves and everybody lives in the High Noon light. And you cannot do that without responsibility, so we hope we’ve sold you on that. And if not, you can get your money back or you can reach out to us, and we’ll continue to work on you a little bit.

Sammy Uyama: Absolutely. So with that, we’ll see you next time.

Andrew Love: Hello everybody, Andrew Love here, and I just wanted to add one more point. High Noon is a nonprofit organization and we are run by donations. And although we’ve been doing okay, thanks to the massive generosity of our founders, the Wolfrum Burgers. We want to expand higher, higher, higher, higher. We want to make a global impact. We want to reach every family. We want to change the culture. And for that to happen, we’re going to need a lot of volunteers and a lot of staff. That’s just the reality, it takes money to travel, it takes money to do a lot of the things we do. And we want to let you be a part of this growth, and so what we’ve created is a donor’s club, which is a $10-month club, and when you join, you get a T-shirt mailed to your door. You can get some exclusive content. We also have some really good goodies for our tribe of people who are part of the donor’s club that we’re going to talk about in the coming month. So I just wanted to invite you to be one of these people, everybody can afford $10 a month, it’s just a matter of whether it’s a priority. So if you feel High Noon has impacted you positively, or your family or somebody you know, please consider donating. I don’t want you to give any money unless you really, really want to. But if you do want to, I encourage you to really, really donate. So $10 a month is I don’t know, a cat a month. I don’t know how to measure it. It’s a giant hamburger and french fries a month that you can sacrifice in order to help this world become a more habitable, more enjoyable, more connected, more loving place. So please consider joining our donor’s club, it’s just $10 a month. We look forward to seeing you on the inside of our secret society for donors. Have a good day, everybody.

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