This week, we are joined on The Hack by Faz, a great friend of Leon who has just emigrated to Canada. 
But before he left, we got him to do a quick Podcast with us... 

Embrace the Quiet and the Now?? 

The bond that will last a lifetime. 

What is Discussed? 
Leon and Paul with guest Faz (Faisal) Balouchi talking about how their love for rugby created a friendship and bond that will last a lifetime. 
Paul was Leon and Faz’s rugby coach when they were both youngsters, and over the years, the pair grew to become more than teammates but also good friends. Faz was among the first people who helped Leon get Andy Mans Club off the ground after an inspirational discussion in the pub! 
Faz admits he struggled with mental health in the past. He had a high flying job and had some fantastic experiences. But when he returned from the Middle East, it broke him. He had confided in his close friend Leon, which hurt his ego. 
He still bears the scars from that experience, but he is a much stronger person now. Faz has shown that it is possible to come out the other side and rebuild your life. 

Silence is Golden when it comes to Listening. 

Faz found talking things through in a safe environment hugely beneficial and is now trying to master the art of being a good listener. Listening is an important skill and isn’t always easy when trying to help solve a problem; you need to be more conscious and in the moment. Silence is golden and powerful… 
If you want to be a great listener, you must learn to be silent. This way, you can hear what is being said! 
It can be challenging to keep quiet, especially if you’re eager to offer your opinion or share your own experiences. Taking the time to listen to someone indeed shows that you respect them and value what they say. 

Challenge the Insecurities 

The hard lesson he has learnt over the years is to challenge the insecurities; you must look back and see why you felt pressured. Challenge it, don’t ignore it. You can be secure in who you are and what you're doing. Faz feels he didn't ever challenge his insecurities, especially when he was taunted with racism- he'd let it go because he was laid back and wanted to be a pleaser. 
"Life makes you sit and reflect on why you are the way you are, why you may have these insecurities. No matter how big, strong, powerful or how successful you are. Everybody, well, most people have insecurities in their life." 
When you’re feeling insecure, it can be tempting to ignore the feeling and hope it goes away. But that’s not always the best strategy, and sometimes the best thing to do is face your insecurity head-on. 

The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts. 

Faz loves to read books about the human brain and human beings who have lived an interesting life. He enjoys learning how the brain functions, reducing stress, and meditation has transformed him into a better human being. He used to believe that nothing got to him, but focusing on his breath taught him the value of slowing down and paying attention to what is happening now. 
His most inspirational quote comes from Marcus Aurelius “The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.” 
Faz recommends finding a quiet place, quieting the noise, slowing things down, and meditating and cleaning the mind. Don’t try to control your thoughts; develop certain thoughts and habits, and that's when the best thoughts and ideas will come to you because your mind is open and receptive to new thoughts and possibilities. 
One of Faz's book recommendations includes The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. If you're looking to improve your life and wellbeing, this book explores the idea that living in the present moment is the key to happiness and provides techniques to do this. 
If Faz were to give his 18-year-old self some advice, it would be to “Be yourself”, be happy with yourself, love yourself, and don't try to change who you are" it sounds simple, but it is not simplistic. Don’t dwell on the social media channels; nobody is perfect; ignore all the noise, and live your own life, not someone else's. 
Letting go can be hard, but it's important to remember what we're grateful for. Gratitude is a superpower because it allows us to see the good in every situation, no matter how difficult it may be. When we're grateful, we can let go of the negative thoughts and emotions that can bring us down and look toward the positives in our own life. 
So, please join us for this episode of The Hack Podcast, where we'll reveal the secret to listening, challenging your insecurities and changing the quality of your thoughts! 
Sponsored by: Talk suicide 
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