Exclusive Interview with Mindful Ambition’s Patrick Buggy

Who is Patrick Buggy?

A coach, writer, and aspiring entrepreneur – creator of Mindful Ambition.

I learned more about Patrick via a Q&A interview. He has some great answers. Check it out below!

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Q1) I read your story in your About section, but was there a particular moment when your life shifted? Or was it the result of numerous experiences?

“I change in two ways: gradually and suddenly. 

An INSIGHT can hit you in a moment. But transformational, last change tends to be an accumulation of gradual, incremental, step-by-step actions.

That’s how it’s been with my journey. There have been lots of insights that hit in an instant. But they don’t actually make a difference until they’re aggregated and compounded over time with consistent practice.

At Optimize, we talk about helping you go from Theory to Practice to Mastery. 

An insight is the theory. It’s putting things into practice that has led me to feeling healthier, more energized, more confident, more connected, more on my path, etc.”

Q2) Out of all the mindful exercises you have written about, do you have a favorite and why?

“The one that’s going to help me conquer my next most-important challenge. 😉

The tool I use most often is my Daily Wins Checklist. The tool that’s helped me take the biggest leaps is Fear-Setting. For all goal-setting, it’s WOOP!

These days, I’m probably having the most fun with The Fear Game, helping me close the gap between hits of intuition of things I want to do, and actually doing them.”

Q3) Who comes to mind when you think of role models in your field? How have they influenced your life?

“I’m profoundly grateful that two of my biggest mentors, Brian Johnson and Michael Balchan, are now my teammates at Optimize.

I could go on for days about these two. Both are astonishingly radiant exemplars, truly embodying and practicing wisdom to live life at their best and change the world.

Optimize has played a massive role in my personal and professional growth in the last 5 years. All of that is thanks to Bri.

Michael is the one who first turned me on to Optimize. He was the first coach I ever hired, and has played a direct role in supporting my growth in countless other ways.”

Q4) What does success mean to you?

“Closing the gap between who you’re being and who you’re capable of being. Moment to moment.”

Q5) What do you like to do for fun?

“I love moving my body and being outdoors! Hiking, climbing, camping, sports, going to the beach, playing games with friends, etc.

I find deep, meaningful conversations to be super fun. 

And…I’m also obsessed with Optimizing! I geek out hard on the subject matter of my work, and generally find work to be fun.”

Q6) What would you consider your greatest accomplishment? What else would you like to accomplish?

“My greatest accomplishments: every time I’ve made the decision to leave the safety of my comfort zone and the “approved path” to trust my intuition of what I really wanted.

What I want to accomplish: the same thing, repeated, to continue stepping into the next-best version of myself and giving my greatest gifts in service to others.

My biggest growth edge these days is all areas of building deeply meaningful, authentic, wholehearted relationships.”

Q7) What has been the most difficult part of your journey? Do you have a routine or specific exercises to help you overcome struggles?

“Most difficult = Loneliness and doubt when I hadn’t yet built any momentum in my business. I had no idea if forging my own path would work. I sometimes felt like I was crazy for trying. At one point, I had zero clients, went through a breakup, and my grandma died, all in the span of a couple weeks.  

Every struggle requires a slightly different solution, but there are common frameworks and support structures that I apply in all of them:

1 – The Fundamentals. This is language we use at Optimize about how you’re managing your energy. How you’re sleeping, eating, moving, breathing, and meditating makes a HUGE difference in your ability to navigate challenges.

2 – What is it that I want? Beginning with the end in mind of the future vision. Orienting with that north-star. Then…

3 – How would I show up to this challenge if I were at my best? Getting clear on that. And then…

3 – Taking action. Taking small steps. That’s how we make progress.”

Q8) Have you found any similar struggles in people you’ve coached? How have you worked together on overcoming these?

“Hah! Yes. 

It’s not often that we have a challenge that’s UNcommon. All of our struggles are shared, in a way.

Simply having that frame, that we aren’t alone in, or broken for, facing the challenge the facing is a HUGE place to start.

If we are unwilling to accept and love our current situation, and find some semblance of okayness and internal safety within it, we’ll never be able to make effective progress forward.”

Q9) What are 3 recommendations a struggling person can do to improve their life?

“1 – Dial in your Fundamentals. Sleep more. Eat nourishing foods. Move your body daily. Meditate every day. Breathe through your nose. 

2 – Get support. Talk about your challenges with a trusted party. 

3 – Treat it all like an experiment. Try things out. See if they work. Keep what helps, drop what doesn’t.”

Q10) What does your ideal life look like?

“I’m living it. 🙂

The thing is, life is all about change. So this is mostly a process-orientation, not an end state. 

Energetically, I’m in the best shape of my life and feel like I’m making meaningful progress towards my health/movement/energy-oriented goals.

Work-wise, I’m living on purpose. Giving a wide range of my skills in service to the world. Growing as a result of constant challenges. And working with a team, and in an environment of powerful support. 

Love-wise, I feel connected with a community of people who care about me and want me to be my best, that my most important relationships are deepening in authentic and meaningful ways, and that I’m strengthening my ability to forge new connections.

Put another way, my ideal life is feeling like I’m on my path, and that I’m showing up every day ready to take another step forward.”

Q11) If a magical genie gave you 3 wishes, what would you ask for?

“1 – To make it the norm for everyone in the world to meditate every day.

2 – For everyone in the world to understand how to regulate their nervous systems and process challenging emotions.

3 – More wishes? ;)”

Think Less to Live More

How much time do you spend in your mind?

I have spent quite a bit of time in my mind, and have realized that I am more fully alive when I am NOT living in my mind.

It’s good to rationalize and make the best choices you can, but it’s even better when you can make those choices without thinking too much. This takes practice…

Would you like to live a more present life, being more in the moment & less in your thoughts?

                                                                        You can. dccd640ba0fe311f5398b77682040cc0

“The birth of the mind is the death of the senses,” says Dan Millman, but it is by living through our senses that make us feel most alive. This is why many people drink alcohol or do drugs; it is because they want to escape their thoughts & live more in the present moment. Well you can reach this state of mind without the use of drugs or alcohol.

So how can we get back to living through our senses in a healthy way? 

Through Mindfulness Meditation: Defined as “Paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally.”

We live in a world where distractions are all around us. The cell phones we carry with us at all times may be our biggest distraction; they have the ability to make you anticipate a text or call, bring you social media updates, or give you some “important” news.  I keep my phone on silent 90% of the time and have most of my notifications turned off. I rarely watch the news because most of it is there to put fear into its watchers.

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So in this World of technology & constant distractions, how can we make time for practicing Mindfulness Meditation?

To begin, you don’t need to make time for practicing Mindfulness Meditation. You can practice it in the morning as you wake up, on your commute to work, during work, and at any moment during your day.

Example of practicing Mindfulness Meditation:

It is nice to take a specific amount of devoted time for Mindfulness Meditation, but when you are just beginning you should try to practice it within your already established daily routines. The next time you are commuting to work, practice observing the things around you. Get into your senses. Don’t think about what you are seeing, see. Don’t think about what you are hearing, hear. Don’t think about what you are feeling, feel. Don’t think about what you are smelling, smell. Taste.

Don’t label the traffic as “good” or “bad,” allow it to be as it is; see it & hear it. Don’t label the weather or other drivers, just observe them, letting go of your thoughts & tapping into your senses. It’s simple, but we make it difficult.

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As you practice this, there will be a tendency for thoughts to arise, and they will. Be patient with your thoughts. Hear them in your head and then go back to observing. Take a deep breath when needed, putting your focus on your breath and then your surroundings, free of judgment.

“Turn on, tune in, drop out,” said Timothy Leary. There are many interpretations of this, but it can also relate to Mindfulness Meditation as you are dropping your thoughts & tuning in to your senses.

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“You’ve become bored to things because they exist only as names to you. The dry concepts of mind obscure your direct perception.” Dan Millman

Millman also discusses this state of mind as Satori, “which is the warrior’s state of being; it occurs when the mind is free of thought, pure awareness; the body is active, sensitive, relaxed, and the emotions are open and free.”

Reading Dan Millmans, Way Of The Peaceful Warrior, has helped me get more into this mindset.

Getting into the present moment helps us stop dwelling on past thoughts, and to stop anticipating the future. Millman says, “Stay in the present. You can do nothing to change the past, and the future will never come exactly as you plan or hope for.  The warrior is here, now. Your sorrow, your fear & anger, regret & guilt, your envy and plans and cravings live only in the past, or in the future.”

Overall Mindfulness Meditation is when you look at everything surrounding you without labeling it or judging it. You don’t look around & think “I see a chair, a cup of water, a tree. I’m tired. I need more money.” You just sit and observe, letting go of thoughts as they arise. This requires practice as all great things do, but it can be done! You don’t need to drink that 6 pack of Bud Light each night to relax. Dilly dilly. Drink in moderation sure, but this mindfulness practice can help you live more fully in a healthier way.

Again, don’t judge your thoughts as they arise, be patient with them.

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Dan Millman

The more you practice this, the more awake and alive you will feel throughout your days. You can practice Mindfulness Meditation wherever you are, and I highly encourage you to practice it everywhere.

Use your thinking mind when you need to take appropriate action, and then take action & live in the moment. Choose to pay attention to your surroundings on purpose. Stop letting your phantom mind drag you backwards. Don’t believe everything you think, we are often wrong anyway. Practice Mindfulness Meditation throughout your day. It won’t always be easy, but you have a choice.

“Old urges continue to arise, but urges do not matter; only actions do. A warrior is as a warrior does…Action always happens in the present, because it is an expression of the body, which can only exist in the here and now. But the mind is like a phantom that lives only in the past or future. It’s only power over you is to draw your attention out of the present.” Millman

Some of the answers to our biggest question are found not in thinking more, but in thinking less. In being in touch with your senses, you are able to live fully.

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Let us get back to our natural and blissful way of living. Regain your curiosity for life. Learn & observe all things.

“There is no path to happiness. Happiness is the path. There is no path to love. Love is the path. There is no path to peace. Peace is the path.” Millman

“My name doesn’t matter; neither does yours.  What is important is what lies beyond names and beyond questions.” Millman

I encourage you to listen to and read anything from Dan Millman, Alan Watts, Ram Dass, Eckhart Tolle, Jon Kabat-Zinn, Thich Nhat Hanh & all the many other teachers of living a fuller & happier life in the present moment. You can read a summary of Way Of The Peaceful Warrior, by Dan Millman, by Clicking Here.

Let me know how you practice mindfulness! I love connecting with like minded individuals.