My Father's Legacy by Gamora

Family trauma: all of us have it, and yet none of us like to talk about it… unless we’re discussing it at the other end of a couch while wildly gesticulating and using colorful words in front of our overly patient therapists. In all seriousness, everyone deals with their own unique family issues, and it’s pretty much impossible to make it out of childhood without some scars — emotional or otherwise. 

At the same time, all of us have a unique and distinct “role” to play within our families. Some of us are the mediators, and it’s our job to calm and bring together everyone after a big fight. Others of us are the fighters, and we make sure our parents or siblings don’t step on us while we pursue our own dreams and passions. And still others of us are more reserved, calm and collected… we’re the “reactionaries,” or the people who can reflect calmly and logically on the actions of our family members without getting sidetracked by emotions. 

No matter what your family role is, today’s episode of Character Coaching is dedicated to you. Why? Because our main client — Gamora, daughter of one of the most powerful super-beings in the universe — is also dealing with her own unique family struggles. 

Right now, Gamora is doing everything she can to separate herself from her family. She wants to disown her father because she vehemently disagrees with his mission to overthrow and control the entire universe. Makes sense, right? On a less inter-planetary scale, I’m sure a lot of you can relate: I’ll bet many of you have had major disagreements with a family member regarding your political views, religious affiliations, life choices or career decisions…

In situations like these, the question becomes: how do you step out and away from your family’s legacy? Is it possible to have a role in your family without standing in its shadow? Can you comfortably disown certain family members over major disagreements? And are there ways to redefine what family means to you if you don’t like the role you play in yours? 

We asked Gamora these questions, and she’s just come back to us with some answers.

Gamora’s first journal entry: my father’s legacy 

Entry One:

“Lots of things are inevitable, but one thing is clear. Me being like my father cannot be one of them. Ever since I met Peter, I have seen that there’s good in me, but wherever I go people don’t see me as my own entity, but rather the daughter of the all-powerful. He was in many ways my mentor and role model, but his vision of a better world is to take away so much of what makes it so good. In his pursuit to meet this vision, he causes harm at just the snap of his fingers. It’s evil and it’s not what I want. I am powerful without him: I am a great warrior, a  true friend… I’m even starting to recognize myself as a hero…a guardian in this collective. I see conflict coming and I know what side I want to be on, but what can I do to separate myself from that legacy?” — Gamora

First impressions: contrast and compare

An interesting first journal entry from Gamora! My initial takeaway is that Gamora already understands the very valuable coaching concept of “contrast.” What is contrast, you ask? Simple: contrast is when we take something in our life that we don’t like, and we use it to discover and explore all the things we do like instead. 

For instance, if you live in the city, and you hate how noisy, crowded and expensive it is, then you can use those factors to understand where you’d rather live. Do you want total silence, no neighbors and an extremely cheap cost of living? Then it’s time to move to the countryside. If you like parts of the city but other parts you dislike, then maybe suburban living is more fitting for you.

In Gamora’s case, she’s using her father to identify what she doesn’t want to be. She doesn’t want to be evil, nor does she want to conquer the universe. Instead she’d rather do the opposite by protecting others and working with a team of amazing colleagues to accomplish interstellar tasks. 

You can try this with your own family, if you want. Give it a shot: what qualities or traits frustrate you about your parents or siblings? What irks you about who they are, and why do those things irk you? If those are things you DON’T want more of in your life, what sort of different things DO you want? 

Okay. Now, back to our primary client. Despite knowing what she doesn’t want, Gamora still has apprehensions regarding her legacy. How can she put distance between her and her father? And how can she reject the legacy that’s been put out before her? 

It’s crucial that we keep asking these questions, even if Gamora’s already answered parts of them. In fact, that’s part of the coaching process — I don’t want to overwhelm any of my clients with endless questions, so sometimes it can help to ask the same questions in multiple ways to get a clearer picture of what my clients are going through. 

To get a better idea of what Gamora’s experiencing, I’d like to ask: was there ever a time when she saw eye to eye with her dad? If so, what moment made her step away? And what else can she tell me about her relationship with this Peter figure? How does he factor into the equation? 

Let’s put these questions to Gamora and see what she has to say. 


  1. Was there a time when you saw eye to eye with your father? What specific moment or realization made you want to break away from that?
  2. What’s your relationship like with Peter? Does he see you as “A warrior, a friend…a hero?”

Next: focusing on what grows 


He took me in as an orphan and raised me to join him in his conquest. As a child, impressionable, I worked alongside him…but I saw that I was becoming a part of the harm that he was doing. The hurt and the pain he left in his wake was covered in my fingerprints. I don’t think I ever realized what a waste of my potential that was until I met Peter, Rocket, Drax, Mantis and Groot. Becoming a ‘Guardian’ really changed my perspective on the mission that I want to be a part of. They see differently than anyone else in the galaxy. As someone that I want to be. My past with my father really only comes up when things go wrong, and his influence is something hard to ignore.”

With this second journal entry, we’re really starting to get a wider picture of what Gamora’s going through. We’re learning that her father’s legacy doesn’t necessarily define her; rather, it mostly only comes out when things are going poorly with her newfound friends. 

That’s pretty relatable, isn’t it? A lot of us are good at taking steps toward being the people we want to be, but that doesn’t mean our past ever completely goes away. When stress and difficult situations start cropping up, it’s easy to resort to old coping methods in order to deal with them. Make no mistake: having new friends, a better job or a healthier romantic relationship can certainly make you more equipped to deal with the hardships of your life, but again, that doesn’t mean those hardships no longer exist. 

For Gamora, it seems like despite her new circumstances, there’s still unresolved turmoil and pain surrounding her relationship with her father. She’s excited to be a Guardian, but she’s upset that part of her work involves undoing what her father does every day. 

If you’re currently dealing with a similar situation, you might find that you’re “doing the work” to stay on a good path, but your past is still hard to contend with. Maybe you get depressed or resort to bad habits every time your family enters your life (during holidays, when they’re sick, drop-in visits, the list goes on…). 

Or maybe you just end up in an extended “funk” every time your mom or dad calls, because it re-opens old wounds you thought you’d closed. It’s probably pretty frustrating — despite doing everything “right,” there’s still this part of you that’s never going to go away. 

For these reasons, I don’t just want to give out hackneyed advice. Instead of recommending what Gamora (or you) should do, I’d rather get an even better understanding of all the tools she has at her disposal to help her reject her father’s legacy. 

What are her friends like? What are the perks of being a Guardian? Can she talk to them about these things without feeling judged? And is there anything she can do to take care of her mental space when those dark times do inevitably come up?

We’ll put these questions to Gamora once more, and then we’ll wrap up with a final journal entry. 

Follow-up Questions: 

  1. There’s this concept called, “What you focus on grows,” which means that what you spend time ruminating on becomes a larger part of your experience. What are some things that you could do to take care of your mental space when your past comes up again? Could you talk with the guardians?
  2. What does being a Guardian mean to you?

Guardians of the galaxy
Image Credits

The check-in: from rejection to evolution 

Closing Journal:

This journaling interface is using some pretty ancient technology. You earthlings have a long way to catch up on that front. But when it comes to getting through to people, I think those like you and Peter share a strange gift that could rival even Mantis’ empath skills.My friend Drax told me it would be helpful to share my thoughts here because it is a space that nurtures honesty. The idea of changing my ‘focus’ is hard but I can see your point. I don’t want to listen to the voices that only know me as my father’s daughter. I can be stronger, better than just that. I am a guardian. That means that I use my strength to help people who need it most…even when it proves to be an ever-growing list. But that is what makes me happy because it allows me to be who I want with the family that I chose. Thank you, human."

This is some big growth for Gamora! In this final journal entry, it seems like she’s come to the realization that while her family legacy will always be a part of who she is, it definitely doesn’t define her. Instead of being an identity to shed, her legacy is just an issue that occasionally needs addressing. 

Gamora can’t stop her father from doing what he’s doing, but she also doesn’t have to take the blame for it. Instead of letting a bad legacy take up her entire identity, she’s choosing to focus on other things. Will her family’s bad traits still come up in the future? Of course! But her family also doesn’t have to take the main stage every time they do something bad. 

More than that, Gamora knows what she DOES want to be going forward. Instead of putting her energy or attention on her dad, she’s going to put it on being a Guardian (which is… sort of like an interplanetary park ranger… or something?). Having a concrete goal to move toward is going to help Gamora feel far more directed when it comes to putting her energy into something productive.

So, if you’ve been reading between the lines here, here’s what I’ll tell you… if you’re coping with a difficult family member or annoying legacy, the truth is, you’re never going to completely shed that past. It’ll always be a part of you. But it also doesn’t have to be the ONLY part of you. 

What you focus on grows, so focusing on all the tools, resources, friendships and connections you have to help you cope with a frustrating family dynamic is extremely crucial to your long-term mental health. Building toward new goals and seeing your family legacy as something to cope with, instead of something to lament, is going to do wonders for your own growth as a person. 

Of course, I don’t actually know you… so I can’t give you blanket-style advice like this yet. ;-) If you want truly personalized advice, I’d recommend you sign up with me for an introductory coaching session — and while I’m no Guardian of the Galaxy, I think I’m a pretty decent coach. 

Episode Transcript

[00:00:00] Jon Rom: Character coaching is an exploration of coaching principles applied to fictional characters by the host. Any likeness to real people or situations is coincidental. And none of the advice given is intended to take the place of real coaching. Learn more about getting accessible coaching at

[00:00:21] Jonathan Friedman: I'm Jonathan.

[00:00:22] Jon Rom: And I'm John and this is Character Coaching, coaching character ching ching ching

[00:00:44] Jonathan Friedman: Yes, john, you can guess what's selling sunset is.

[00:00:47] Jon Rom: Okay. Well, it sounds like the only time I ever hear sunset other than the literal noun as an adjective is Sunset Boulevard. So I'm guessing. That you ha it's a show about someone trying to sell really expensive houses and like the lunacy of what those conversations sound like.

[00:01:09] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. You're close. You're, you're not wrong. Uh, it's a show similar to, uh, property brothers or any of that other kinds of real estate shows where there's a lot of stuff about houses in this case. Yes, on, on the strip or around LA, Malibu, all of the expensive, nice houses except it's different.

And the reason that it's different is that it's the most dramatic soap opera of all time, as much as it is a real estate show. So there's so much drama. There's so much drama that goes on between all of these real estate agents. Also, the structure of the company that they're following along in this series is these two twin guys, similar to the property brothers called the Oppenheim brothers. But these two, you know, real estate Mavericks who have all the money, the date, you know, the models, all of that kind of thing.

And they have these 10 beautiful people working for them in kind of like a Charlie's Angels kind of system. And it's, it's, it's, it's, it's very unique. I highly recommend that everybody watched the show.

[00:02:34] Jon Rom: Is the idea that like you get seduced into buying a house?

[00:02:39] Jonathan Friedman: Almost. You're not wrong. But also you, you, you see how creepy some rich people are also in the show, Simu Liu who played Shang- Chi um, in the legend of the 10 rings.

That's what it's called. Right?

[00:02:55] Jon Rom: Um, at least 10.

[00:02:58] Jonathan Friedman: And also more popularly from more popular than a Marvel movie. He was at Kim's convenience.

[00:03:04] Jon Rom: Yeah. That's what I was going to say is his most famous or all Kim's convenience, the Canadian what's what sit-com I guess.

Yeah. Sitcom.

[00:03:13] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah, it's a sitcom. Um, he, he buys a house in the show.

Um, and it's, what's really cool about that is he talks about his humble beginnings in a, a suburban Toronto, just like us. And he just celebrated his ten-year layoff from Deloitte, which is kind of, you know, an investment banking, accounting firm. He worked as an accountant there. He got laid off and he became an actor did a couple small roles at Kim's convenience, and now he is a, is a superhero. So I mean, if that's not inspiring, I don't know what is.

[00:03:49] Jon Rom: Do you think that, uh, if we had real soup, if we had real superheroes that the, um, people who would become them would be celebrities like celebrities would fall into vats of acid that turned them into like, uh, captain America or, or do you think, do you like, do you think it would just be regular Joes that just like rise to the occasion?

[00:04:16] Jonathan Friedman: I think if there's one thing that I've learned from all of my years of shamelessly watching every single superhero movie that comes out as many times as possible, I I've learned that anybody can be a superhero. Like anybody can fall into those circumstances. You know you have. And where we've been trying to get them as a client for a while, but, uh, Bruce, Bruce Wayne, um, you know, celebrity,

[00:04:44] Jon Rom: why would you, why would you care about a billionaire Playboy philanthropist as your client, and what does that have to do with superheroes?

[00:04:52] Jonathan Friedman: Uh, you're right. Sorry. We, we, we know nothing about what he does in his spare time.

[00:04:57] Jon Rom: I mean, I assume it's donating money.

[00:04:59] Jonathan Friedman: Yep. Billionaire Playboy celebrity.

[00:05:02] Jon Rom: Yeah, exactly, exactly. Yeah.

[00:05:04] Jonathan Friedman: Um, but from reading it from watching those movies, reading those comics, we know that anybody can fall into the circumstances that happen to celebrities that hhappento high school students happens to, you know, uh, lawyers who have super ninja skills. So, um, I hope I hope more lawyers become superheroes. I feel like that would be a fun world to be in.

[00:05:31] Jon Rom: Because they have all the trouble that they would likely get in and have to get themselves out of in the court of law?

[00:05:36] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. I feel like it's just good for business. You know what I mean? Like they're part of the thing they're in the trenches. There, they're getting the work done, but then also by daytime, you're, you're kicking butt in court.

[00:05:48] Jon Rom: But wouldn't it suck if like you got called to like a different country? LiWhatf like an American superhero gets called to Canada and then has to answer to criminal, you know, has to like to defend themselves against the crown of Canada?

How are they, how are they going to fair? Because our laws are not exactly completely different, but pretty different. I'm pretty sure. I don't know. I'm not a lawyer.

[00:06:12] Jonathan Friedman: Neither am I. Um, but we know all crimes happen in New York, roughly, so I wouldn't be too. I wouldn't be too worried that there'll be able to go back and do what they do best.

If the, if they come here, they have the time to focus.

[00:06:24] Jon Rom: It's true. And it's not the, it's not that, you know, and crimes also happened in New Jersey. Just they're not considered crimes.

[00:06:29] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. There's the purge. There's legal.

[00:06:33] Jon Rom: Yeah.

[00:06:33] Jonathan Friedman: That's why in, uh, that's why we only ever hear about New York everywhere else.

Crime is completely illegal and that's why those people would never be called to Canada too. Like they can't, there's no problems here.

[00:06:51] Jon Rom: Well, there's one problem is that, I don't know if you'll have a journal for me. See, that's called a segue. Uh, John, thank you. I appreciate that.

[00:07:03] Jonathan Friedman: I feel like our segways through our series have become both lazier and better at the same time.

[00:07:15] Jon Rom: You know, the problem is, is that the better we get at segway is the more likely we are to point them out there and there by ruining.

[00:07:22] Jonathan Friedman: Well, it just good to get to see how far we've come.

[00:07:26] Jon Rom: Yeah, that's good. Good. We should celebrate us on our sec, our segue ability.

[00:07:31] Jonathan Friedman: We should.

[00:07:33] Jon Rom: All right. Well, D do you actually have a journal? Because if not, you'll just leave.

Well, I, I just I'm, you know, I'm a busy guy. I, I'm a man on the go a man of industry.

[00:07:47] Jonathan Friedman: And of industry. Yeah. I do have a journal for you. Um, and for all of you listeners out there, I think this is a good one. Um, it's called my father's legacy and it's coming to us from, uh, someone named Gamora.

So I'm super excited to get into this one.

"Lots of things are inevitable, but one thing is clear. Me being like my father cannot be one of them ever since I met Peter, I have seen that there's good in me or wherever I go, people don't see me as my own entity, but rather the daughter of the old, powerful. He was in many ways, my mentor and role model, but his vision of a better world is to take away so much of what makes it so good. In his pursuit to meet his vision, he causes harm at just a snap of his fingers. It's evil and it's not what I want. I am powerful without him. I'm a great warrior, a true friend, even starting to recognize myself as a hero, a guardian in this collective. I see conflict coming and I know what side I want to be on, but what can I do to separate myself from that legacy?"

That's a, that's a, that's, that's a unique journal. Very unique, very interesting. Very interesting.

John w what sort of comes through, well, not sort of what comes to your mind?

I'm going to start, I'm going to start, I'm going to stop with my filler words. I feel like I throw, oh, well, what are you sort of thinking? No, no.

Jon, what are you thinking about?

[00:09:13] Jon Rom: Well, I'm sort of maybe kind of, uh, in, in a matter of speaking, considering that people deal with inner turmoil, inner turmoil here, and their role in their family, uh, uh, quite a bit, but it's, it's the kind of the grand juror of how she speaks about it, because she's saying that she's trying to basically get away from being evil.

And I don't know, I don't know if I'd go so far as evil, but I feel like there's a lot of people who, who view their parents' actions is not something that they want to emulate and they wonder how can they get away from that? And, and their focus really lies on what not to be. Uh, that's. That was, that was kinda what I got from this.

Well, what about you, Jonathan? What did you, uh, what'd you suss out from this, uh, from this first entry here.

[00:10:11] Jonathan Friedman: By using suss out you're you're you're saying that for the past, you know, 12, 13 episodes, we've been very focused on very Canadiana, very millennial contents. And now we're trying to be zoomers. Is that what we're doing?

I'll use suss more.

[00:10:24] Jon Rom: Oh, oh, you're uh, this we're completely sus I have listened to our pod I've listened back to our past episodes, but we are assessed AF

[00:10:34] Jonathan Friedman: okay.



BRB GGG um, the platform at NMU. NMU.

[00:10:47] Jon Rom: Yeah. Oh my gosh. Every guy. Yeah it's where you just, you don't have to have any real conversations. Cause it's all. Hi. Hi. How are you? Good. What's sup. Sup.

I forgot about Sup.

[00:11:03] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah, he did with an interrobang and exclamation point question mark exclamation point, just to make sure it's, you know, sup you know, feel like that's critical.

[00:11:14] Jon Rom: I wonder if I wonder if children didn't talk to each other and didn't talk before, before MSN, if like, cause that, that was really the extent of our communication skills was, was saying sups? sup, you know, not NMU and then the conversation would kind of die unless you actually have something to say to the person.

[00:11:34] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. You would just say good and you. Oh, I'm good. Great.

[00:11:39] Jon Rom: Hello, sir. I am well, lovely weather we are having. Good day.

[00:11:43] Jonathan Friedman: I think that's an interesting question. What happens if you say sup and somebody says, well, everything's, you know, terrible like that. That's a really unique, whoa, voice crack 18th puberty.

Let's go.

[00:11:55] Jon Rom: Yeah, one more again. Okay. So, okay. So we, we we're, we're getting, we're getting segued again. We're getting sidetracked. You said you had a, you had a, you said you had a good segue.

[00:12:05] Jonathan Friedman: Uh, I was just going to say here's a good segue and then go back to go back to the content at hand.

[00:12:12] Jon Rom: Okay.

[00:12:13] Jonathan Friedman: It's interesting. And actually my family and I were talking about this recently. We had kind of a, it was Passover recently and at the table, you know, there's three ish generations of family there. And we were talking about, you know, this idea of how my parents, when they became parents, wanted it to be less like their parents with us and try things differently.

But us growing up too, we realized that, you know, there's a lot of things that we've learned from our parents. And, you know, we are very grateful for that, but there's lots of things that we would want to do differently and change and bring into our own home. And even though this isn't a conversation of parenting, I think what's interesting here is that Gamora is noticing well, I mean, I'm making an assumption, but it seems like Gamora is noticing that there are things that their father does and is doing and is continuing to do that she really doesn't see herself being a part of. And I know we've brought this one up before, but this idea of contrast is something that I'm, I'm left thinking about because we all experience things that we don't like, whether it be a job, whether it be a family member, whether it be, uh, any kind of experience and contrast allows us to look at those items and say, oh man, yeah, I really don't like that.

But what would I rather have instead? And in this case, Gamora is already at that level of awareness where they're saying. I am powerful without him. I'm a great warrior, a true friend. I'm even starting to recognize myself as a hero, a guardian in this collective, you know, very opposite to, um, evil. I think that's a really, um, amazing, uh, self-awareness that we're seeing from Gomorrah right off the top.

[00:14:10] Jon Rom: Yeah. And I'd say, I'd say that, you know, I think there's, there's an instinct that people might have to read this and say, "oh, your dad's not evil". Come on that's not. And that might, that might honestly be the case. They might, you know, they might see their father's evil, but in reality they're not. But in reality it doesn't really matter because it's, it's, Gamora's interpretation of the events.

That's really gonna be the thing that we're coaching. Uh, we assume we, we assume that the, the, the, what the, uh, assume is the wrong word. We take at face value what are our coachees are our journals are saying, because that's how they see things. And so our, our ability to understand them is through their lens, not through our lens, trying to interpret what they're saying.

Cause cause you get into you really get into the weeds, uh, letting, letting people believe what they're going to believe about, about their family and then more so addressing their belief system is much more valuable than just trying to nitpick the specific things that they say, the specific, uh, uh, interpretation that they put forward.

[00:15:30] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. And I love that. And I think one thing that's very important here is it is the first journal. We don't know the full story. We don't know the extent of what evil means. We don't know the extent of what anything is. And to your point, we just have Gamora interpretation of their events and evil could be something like, you know, doesn't take out the trash, but evil can also be someone who, um, w I need to cough evil can also be someone who wants to literally destroy the world.

So there's a huge chasm of different things that it can be. And we really want to take the time to ask questions, because I think to understand how to separate Gamora from that legacy and start to build in those structures, which in my opinion, it seems they're already starting to do. We have to really define what they don't want.

And I think that's that, that's, that's what I'm thinking about a lot here. Also, like what does it mean to Gamora you know, to move in towards that hero, that guardian, uh, role, what does that look like? Um, is it, you know, flying around in spaceships? Is it, you know, serving soup at the soup bank? Are they looking to become a nurse in a collective, right?

Like what kind of hero does a good moral want to be? And we want to, uh, get in there as well. Not just focus on the evil, but focus on, you know, where they're moving. Making moves.

[00:17:15] Jon Rom: Yeah. You're you, you know, again, we, we come across this, this whole idea of the definition of things being really important for each person and asking what being a guardian means to her is is a valuable thing to know, but there's also, there's also wisdom and kind of taking it slow and learning more of the story here. So, so your, I think your intuition is absolutely correct because...

[00:17:51] Jonathan Friedman: Sick!

[00:17:54] Jon Rom: Well done well done. You've you've done it again.

[00:17:56] Jonathan Friedman: Do I get a gold star?

[00:17:58] Jon Rom: You get a silver star and two thirds of it will be painted gold.

[00:18:05] Jonathan Friedman: That's pretty good.

[00:18:06] Jon Rom: Yeah. That's most of the way there.

[00:18:07] Jonathan Friedman: Sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt. Just wanted to make sure it was positively reinforced.

[00:18:11] Jon Rom: Now I know you need it. Uh, the, the question. No, so really what I want to know, Jonathan, is what do you want, how do you want to ask this? Because there's lots of ways to dig into the story and try to understand more about what's going on.

Uh, uh, but what do you want to know specifically? Like, what are we, how are we digging into the story? How are we getting the story here?

[00:18:33] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. I have a couple of questions. Just one thing I, I just thought of, because my brain has a unique way of finding random bits of information at inopportune times, I was just remembering one of our first episodes. We, we coached, uh, a professor named BoJack H and their topic was also around legacy. And what I thought was really interesting now, having somebody else talking about legacy is the same cluster of topic around legacy and what it means to them can look very different for two very different people. Um, so I, my mind just went there.

[00:19:16] Jon Rom: Well, no, it's a good, well, you bring up a good point because if, from the perspective, let's say, let's say your dad owns a donut shop and he loves making donuts. And it's his favorite thing. And he's thinking to himself, like, I want to make an amazing donut shop that I'm going to leave my sons to inherit.

And that will be my legacy. And, and you grow up to find that you just don't like, I mean, you like donuts, you don't really like making donuts so much. It's not your favorite, but yeah, you don't like the business of the donut making. And so you have to confront your evil doughnut father who doesn't really uh, respect what you want to do necessarily, uh, as much as you would respect you inheriting the donut shop, what do you do in that situation? Like what, how, how, how would we coach the donut son and how would we coach Gamora? What do we want to know in that situation? What do we want to dig into?

[00:20:32] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. And I, I love that.

I think what you did there, which is interesting is sometimes when we look at, you know, there's a lot of powerful words in Gomorrah's journal, inevitable, evil entity, all powerful hero, guardian taking, like, not that we're gonna, you know, project the donut story on to Gamora but it gives us kind of a model of, okay, that's a simpler way to understand it.

Lowest common denominator, donut- minator uh, that was terrible. I'm so sorry.

[00:21:04] Jon Rom: Donut-minator?

[00:21:05] Jonathan Friedman: I was denominator. And then in my head I heard donuts and I'm like, can this be a find out? He couldn't be upon I'm so sorry.

[00:21:11] Jon Rom: Okay. It could never be. but not like this..

Never like this.

[00:21:14] Jonathan Friedman: Just step away from my own father's legacy, I think.

[00:21:19] Jon Rom: Yeah. Yeah. At the inheritance of making puns at any opportunity.

[00:21:23] Jonathan Friedman: A genetic pun syndrome GPS.

[00:21:31] Jon Rom: It really helps you find yourself.


[00:21:42] Jonathan Friedman: I try. I really do.

[00:21:45] Jon Rom: It's good. Where are we saying?

[00:21:47] Jonathan Friedman: I was going to say so now that we kind of have a model, a lowest common denominator. Let's take a look at some questions that I have. So when I was, uh, looking at this before, um, I wanted to know, was there a time when Gamora saw eye to eye with their father, what specific moment or realization made them want to break away from that?

What was like the specific moment where Gamora looked at her father and said, no, this isn't what I wanted anymore. And second, what's the relationship like with Peter? Does he see you as a warrior, a friend, a hero? I really want to know my thought process behind these questions is really understand at what point and what was the purest evil in this case that made Gamora say, Hey, I want to step away, but also how do other people see Gamora?

What's her legacy to them? Jon, do you have a question you wanted to add?

[00:22:42] Jon Rom: See? Now I got donuts on the mind. Um, I, I suppose I I'd want to know. Uh, what you asked good questions. That's the problem. Cause what is the breaking point? What was the change? When did it, when did you stop being the donut? When did you leave the path of the donut to, to go on this new path?

You know, and I, I, she's probably not going to answer it if she has all that meat and potatoes too, to get through with what, the questions that you answered. But I just want to know what does it mean to her to be a guardian?

[00:23:20] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah, I think that's a good question, but before.

[00:23:23] Jon Rom: She doesn't get to it, then you know, it's okay, well, you can ask it again.

You know, it's like that scene in The Simpsons where they, uh, try to open a locked door and they try this thing and it doesn't work. And then a second later Lisa opens the door and she says, I tried that idea again. Why do we only ever try everything once? You know, if, if you don't ask, get the question answered the first time you can ask it again later, it's no big deal.

[00:23:48] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. And I think as coaches too, there are so many questions that pop up in this journal for me, and to break it down to just, you know, under five can be difficult, but also we don't want to overwhelm our client. But you know, if we throw, you know, 2, 3, 4 questions, they might just say answer one and then we can come back to something else later.

Hey, I was thinking about that question. I asked you last week, I was wondering if you had any time to put some thought into it. There's nothing wrong with that. Um, I'd love to know, Jon, just before we jumped to a break, I'd love to know what your favorite kind of doughnut is?

[00:24:24] Jon Rom: Okay. So I'm going to get, I'm going to get a lotta, a lotta, uh, flak for this one cause I know every time I've ever said this out loud, people are like, what? That's it's not the best donut. It's like, it's fine. I love fresh honey crullers.

[00:24:43] Jonathan Friedman: Really?

[00:24:45] Jon Rom: Yeah, yeah, yeah, no, listen, listen, listen, listen, if you're eating a donut, you already know that you're having like, like a, basically a sugar bomb and that's fine.

You've accepted that, but shouldn't the experience at the moment also feels like a light fluffy, airy, uh, uh, sugary uh, uh, Ambrosia that's entering your mouth. Why, why does it have to feel like you're swimming in a lake of custard or, or, uh, or eating apples for some reason and a donut. Like I get, I get every donut has its place, but if I had to choose a freshly baked honey crawler, uh, Ooh, I killed for donuts right now.

Okay. What's your favorite donut?

I feel I don't want to hear, I don't even want to hear your response to what I just said. I don't care. I love, I love what I love. You tell me, what's your favorite donut and I'm going to model for you how to not judge someone's donut preferences.

[00:25:51] Jonathan Friedman: Oh, that's fair. I was thinking, I feel like Dolly Parton has a song called every donut has its time.

I feel like that's a power ballad written by one country artist in the eighties. It has to be, um, my favorite donut. I'm not a big donut guy, but there are two, uh, Kinds of donuts that make me happy.

Um, one is a sour cream glazed donut. I prefer the cakier donuts, as opposed to, you know, the light and fluffy. Because if you're, if you're having a ch it's gotta be substantial. It's got, gotta have, you know, I don't know it's going to have some weight to it. I need weight in my donuts. Um, the second

what's your second?

Yeah. So this one is the best owner that I ever had. I was in Chicago. I went to this place called Glazed and infused, which made me laugh cause good led Zepplin reference and nobody's more rock and roll than I am.

[00:26:46] Jon Rom: Right.

[00:26:46] Jonathan Friedman: And they had this maple bacon long john, which is a cake donut, maple on the inside, and on the top, there's a piece of candied bacon, but also there was broken candied bacon strips throughout the the the doughnut. So you'd have like little bits of crunch, a little bit of salt, a little bit of sweet.

And it was just one of them. It was the best donut I've ever had. So every time I have a donut now, like, man, it's, it's fine, but it's not that I'm seeking the, you know, I'm seeking that high from that first donut.

[00:27:24] Jon Rom: Jonathan, if you bring another John onto this show,

I will scream.

[00:27:29] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. I only like it because it has John in it.

[00:27:32] Jon Rom: Yeah. Listen, I, I respect your donuts, your own opinions, but your, uh, your favorites are bad and you should feel bad.

[00:27:41] Jonathan Friedman: So I can't judge your taste, but you can judge mine. Is that what we're doing?

[00:27:44] Jon Rom: No, I, when I said I was going to model how to, I should have said, I'm going to model how to judge correctly, uh, when someone tells you they're done in our preferences.

[00:27:54] Jonathan Friedman: Got it. Okay. Well, Everybody, every donut in its time, every donut has its place. Thank you, Dolly Parton, for writing that banger. And, uh, we're going to ask him more of these questions in a head to break. And then Jon, you can think about what you've done.

[00:28:10] Jon Rom: Sounds good.

[00:28:19] Jonathan Friedman: And we're back,

[00:28:21] Jon Rom: we're back, back, back, back, back back, like, well, ideally not like a heart attack

[00:28:28] Jonathan Friedman: no, no, definitely not like that. Uh, but if, if that's what's going on, let us know. We'll call you an ambulance. You're in good hands. Uh, one thing I wanted to bring up for all of our non-Canadian listeners, if you haven't had a chance to try what we call Timbits or I guess in other places they're called donut holes, uh, which is a weird thing to say, but I guess that's what they are.

Um, but they're not, it's like the thing that makes the hole in the donut is like, the tidbit is the product of making that whole, so I don't get why they're called donut holes, but who am I to judge? They kind of allow you to try many different little doughnuts as opposed to committing to one fresh honey cruller if that's, you know, like whose thing is that?

But I guess they have a cool pattern. So you want to try it. Um, I highly recommended if you ever had the chance, um, shoutout to my boy, uh, Tim Horton.

[00:29:25] Jon Rom: Are you plugging a multi-million dollar chain on our podcast and not even just the idea of donut holes slash Timbits?

[00:29:36] Jonathan Friedman: I, I, I feel like it's not that I want it.

Look, I'll be straight up. There are hundreds, if not thousands of amazing mom-and-pop bakeries in Toronto alone.

[00:29:51] Jon Rom: And you remember the name of literally zero?

[00:29:55] Jonathan Friedman: Well, I remember the one in Chicago cause they had the best donut. I don't often eat donuts, but there areas of amazing bakeries in Toronto.

Here we have Torys, which is a fantastic vegan bakery that there are so many and they're all better than Tim. Horton's my point was that there's Tim Horton's is pretty well tied to Canadiana, just like. The tragically hip has to be everybody's favorite band.

[00:30:19] Jon Rom: Folks, folks, folks, I want you to know that, you know, are the two hosts on the show have had a conversation about monetizing the show, getting people to advertise on the show and we decided against it because, you know, we're, we're trying, we're trying to, uh, demonstrate that the journal that talks back is the platform for you to use.

And it would just muddy the waters, but apparently. We can go ahead and buzz market any shop or service we want, uh, as long as we don't get paid for it. So, all right. Uh, let's see, uh, play it again sports, there. That's a great brand. They have, uh, skates and jerseys for the same appley and other, affordable

it is certainly affordable.

[00:31:08] Jonathan Friedman: If you want to get Into skating, but never got the chance and don't want to spend a thousand dollars on skates then..

...0:31:15] Jon Rom: What other hyper, what other hyper-local brand can we advertise? Uh, well of course you, you gotta go to, uh, uh, uh, Thai express. Oh yeah. You got to go to yoga.

Actually. Yoga for is existing in the U S yeah. I saw one. I saw one in Buffalo, so.

[00:31:33] Jonathan Friedman: Damn but they put, they started in Toronto.

[00:31:36] Jon Rom: Did they?

[00:31:36] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah,

[00:31:38] Jon Rom: I think we've got off track.

[00:31:40] Jonathan Friedman: As per usual.

[00:31:41] Jon Rom: As per usual, shame on us.

[00:31:46] Jonathan Friedman: Fine.

[00:31:46] Jon Rom: If you get a fault, then you gotta follow up posts. Did Gamora ever get back to you?

[00:31:50] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. Let me just stop thinking about donut holes for a second and why they're not.

[00:31:55] Jon Rom: Why is that sound? Why does it sound so dirty when you say it? Stop saying it like that.

[00:32:00] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. I'm so sorry. It's just frustrating, it's frustrating that it's named that way and it's also misnamed. It should be, you know, I don't even know. I'll think about something, but yeah. Gamora did follow up and that's more important than thinking about donut holes.

So let's uh, let, let's listen to what Gamora had to say. Was that, do you have a saxophone in your bedroom?

[00:32:27] Jon Rom: No. Sorry. My phone went off there for a second.

[00:32:29] Jonathan Friedman: I just have like a horn section whenever you get a text.

Of course.

[00:32:34] Jon Rom: Yeah. Why would you even ask?

[00:32:37] Jonathan Friedman: You used to have whenever you got a text notification and said, teens, I'm like, oh, John's popular again.

[00:32:49] Jon Rom: He's coming back in a big, big way. One day, one day, someone who enjoys the macaroni family of podcasts is going to listen to the show and they're going to say, wow, that guy's a huge nerd.

[00:33:02] Jonathan Friedman: And they already know it.

[00:33:03] Jon Rom: They already know it.

[00:33:04] Jonathan Friedman: All right. Here's what we got from Gamora.

[00:33:06] Jon Rom: Sure.

[00:33:08] Jonathan Friedman: Thanks for the permission.

[00:33:12] Jon Rom: Well, goofy energy.

[00:33:15] Jonathan Friedman: It's like slightly aggressive, but it's also

[00:33:17] Jon Rom: slightly fun. It's fun and flirty. What else?

[00:33:20] Jonathan Friedman: I want donuts.

[00:33:22] Jon Rom: Oh my God. I would do so many bad things. I'm going to get a donut today. I'm pretty sure.

[00:33:27] Jonathan Friedman: LCMN.

[00:33:28] Jon Rom: Yeah.

[00:33:28] Jonathan Friedman: All right, here we go.

"He took me in as an orphan and raise me to," let me try it.

all right,

Jonathan Davis is going to hate editing this.

[00:33:46] Jon Rom: Oh God. I'm so sorry. Jonathan Davis.

[00:33:49] Jonathan Friedman: "He took me in as an orphan and raised me to join him in his conquest. As a child, impressionable, I worked alongside him, but I saw that I was becoming a part of the harm that he was doing the hurt and the pain he left in his wake were covered in my fingerprints. I don't think I ever realized what a waste of my potential that was until I met Peter Brocket, Drax, Mantis, and Groot.

Becoming a guardian, really changed my perspective on the mission that I want to be a part of. They see differently than everyone else in the galaxy.

As someone that I want to be my past with my father only comes up when things go wrong and his influence is something hard to ignore"

[00:34:28] Jon Rom: The donuts are following Gamora.

[00:34:31] Jonathan Friedman: The donuts are following. So I think there's good, you know, we're, we're, we're learning more of the story. We're learning a bit more about Gomorrah's group. We're learning more about the past something that I found interesting as I was reading through it for the eighth time, was the pain that they feel, it seems like good things are going on.

And that Gamora is making moves, figuring out what they want to be a part of. But when something goes wrong, that's when everything kind of crumbles down and says, oh wow, I'm still the daughter of this evil thing. And it brings up all of that pain.

[00:35:20] Jon Rom: Um, it's, it's, it's the illusion that everything's going uh, well, in the short term that itch people, people might expect it to dispel any problems that you might have, but these, this kind of deeper issues that people face can, can bubble up to the surface quickly if the circumstances ever allow. And, and it's usually when things suddenly start going wrong, that all of a sudden, um, uh, issues like these become relevant, you know, you are trying to escape to overcome a legacy and that legacy sounds pretty far-reaching.

Uh, how are you supposed to do that? Even when you have this new group of, uh, friends and colleagues that see you differently, you know, you don't, you don't just get to escape everything just because you're surrounded by better people. You do have to face it, but it just may make you more equipped. To, to, to deal.

I know it sounded like there was more to that sense, but it just makes, it makes you more equipped to deal. They still have to deal.

[00:36:35] Jonathan Friedman: You still have to deal. They're still, well, actually it's possible that you don't have to deal because if you're not thinking about it or it doesn't bother you, but it's still something that happened.

It's okay. If you're, if you're moving forward and you're comfortable with that, that's fine. But like if a tree falls in a forest and no one's around to hear it, nobody heard it. But in this case, Gamora still hears the tree. There's still turmoil. There's still pain. It follows every time one thing goes wrong Gamora is like, Aw, damn like my father is evil. Um, and to have that follow her everywhere, she goes, even as she's trying to do some really big, good, important thing. It's a, it brings up a lot of pain. So this is a good note, too, for anybody, either listening to a friend or if you're in a helping profession, can never assume that something that sounds painful is painful.

You have to wait for that pain to be expressed. And that's where we wanna, you know, do a lot of the work that we do. And in this case, no more is expressing quite a bit of pain. We see kind of the two sides on one side being super excited and happy and honored to be a part of this guardians, collective, whatever that is.

But on the other side that passed everywhere. She goes, when one thing goes wrong, Everything is wrong. It kind of goes back into that hole. So the question for me is how, when you, when you're talking with someone like that, how do we build capacity? Do we look for more guardians around them? So that there's more noise?

Um, do we, you know, really go back into the past and do some of that deeper work? Where, where, where would you go with that, John? Where, where do you start to, uh, dissect this a bit more?

[00:38:36] Jon Rom: I think, I think there is, uh, uh, a belief here that we need to identify that the there's, um, more, that there's more to this than, than what has been led on because Gamora is, is trying to get away.

It's like, Trying trying to get away from a legacy is a really difficult thing because the legacy is, it is ephemeral. It's an idea. It's the impacts that it has on other people that you are then associated with. And he can't control how other people see you, but you can control what, how you see yourself.

And so I guess the question I'd want to know is how does Gamora see herself in this situation? Cause we know we know how the guardians see her. It sounds like a lot of strangers or people they interact with sees her, as her father's daughter. But how does she see herself? Who does she think she is?

That sounds, which is a dramatic thing to say, who do you think you are? But who does she think she is? It's, it's, it's something, it's something that isn't clarified yet for us.

[00:39:57] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. And I think. Um, there's kind of a couple of things I want to look at. So from, you know, this idea of what are you focusing on when what are you bringing into your experience?

If you're spending all the time, thinking about how evil you are and not about all the good things that you're doing, you know, you're going to have that perception of yourself as evil, something that I'd want to, you know, eventually, and this is not something I bring in here. We never really go to advice first.

We're always asking questions, getting more of the story, and building that relationship beforelly get. But eventually, something that I would want to put into place is when a bad thing, if we know that when a bad thing happens, we kind of go back into that dark, evil place. I want to have like a routine and a plan of things that we do when we're in that low place.

That way we don't, you know, go into that hole. And as we, you know, practice and build that muscle, we're, you know, falling into that place a lot less, because it seems like Gamora has a really good support system. There are a lot of things that are going on, but we're still very, very focused on that evil.

So for me, the questions that I'd want to ask are what does being a guardian mean to you? To, you know, go even further to understand. That good place that Gamora is in or it's...

[00:41:22] Jon Rom: So, so, so we're tag-teaming that cause that is, and she didn't get to it last time when I asked you, but, but I I'm glad, I'm glad you brought it back because I, I still want to know

[00:41:32] Jonathan Friedman: bringing it back.

And the other thing that I want to bring up is there's this concept called what you focus on grows. It's a book by Kim Ades. Uh, there's a, there's a plug we should use. Um, and basically what that concept means is what you spend time ruminating about, becomes a part of your experience. If you're spending a lot of time thinking about being a hero, you know, that becomes a lot more of what you think about that becomes a lot more of your experience in the world and likely how other people experience you.

But if you spend time thinking about how evil you are, that's it it's two sides of the same thing. So, what are some of the things that you could do to take care of your mental space when your past comes up again? You know, could you access your support system? Are there other support systems we can access?

That's kind of where I would want to go with it.

[00:42:28] Jon Rom: And I liked that question, cause I think that, uh, uh, the way that she phrases things kind of betrays what she's focusing on, she says, I don't think I ever realized what a waste of my potential that was. But another way of looking at that is that you have a great amount of, of potential, you know, and representing it that way, saying I have a lot of potentials that I want to use towards something is different than just looking at your past and saying, oh, I was wasting my potential.

Uh, and I think, I think there's value in, in, in sharing the. Uh, coaching principle. what do you focus on grows if you focus on what a waste of your potential in the past, that sentiment, that idea, that focus grows, but if you focus on your current potential and what you want to do with it, then that can grow as well.

It's, it's not, it's not a, you know, a Grand Canyon's worth of distinction, but it does make a big difference in the trajectory. Just kind of like when you, when you nudge a satellite in space a little bit in and ends up, you know, on Pluto instead of back on earth. Yeah. I'm sure. I'm sure some and

yeah, exactly.

[00:43:48] Jonathan Friedman: You know, like with your immense power, you just like touch a satellite and oh, it goes, however, many light-years away.

[00:43:55] Jon Rom: Now you say, hey man, you don't need a lot of power. That's the. That's the beauty of space, the beauty of inertia.

[00:44:01] Jonathan Friedman: And your fingers too. And it'll just go at Adios satellites sending you to Pluto.

[00:44:07] Jon Rom: No, I'm just saying sometimes I casually, uh, get on the space X rocket, and I go to space and I give a, I give a satellite a quick, a quick boot, uh, overcoming it's, uh, escape, velocity, and then I, um, send it to Pluto. Do you not do that? Are you too busy in donut shops, Jonathan?

[00:44:36] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah, when I, when I focus on donuts, I get more donuts.

I feel like that's how it goes. But when I was watching that space X documentary, um, was that you who went up and you're just. Like kick, kick, kicking satellites and planets into different spots?

[00:44:54] Jon Rom: Cannot confirm or deny that.

[00:44:55] Jonathan Friedman: Cannot confirm or deny.

[00:44:57] Jon Rom: For legal reasons. I cannot confirm or deny this.

[00:44:59] Jonathan Friedman: Did you, did you co by Twitter too?

[00:45:03] Jon Rom: Uh, I also cannot confirm or deny how much stake I have in the company, Twitter again, for legal reasons.

Why you,


[00:45:17] Jonathan Friedman: Oh, sorry. It was, it was a stake joke.

[00:45:20] Jon Rom: Oh my God. Uh, we're going, okay. Say the question, send your questions in and, and let's, let's, uh, you know, let's, let's dial the puns back down to a seven. How about that? At least the ones I can understand.

[00:45:38] Jonathan Friedman: Give it a nice sear. I already sent the question over. I just wanted to pull a sneaky.

[00:45:44] Jon Rom: Oh, okay.

Well, let's, let's go. Let's go for a quick break and then we'll

be right back.

Coach first, stand up comedian second. I'll never quit a job.

[00:46:06] Jonathan Friedman: So let's see if I can.

[00:46:07] Jon Rom: Wait, wait, wait, Jonathan, Jonathan wait. You and I, uh, don't pay to advertise this show. We don't, we don't, uh, we don't put it, you know, on, uh, on the message boards, uh, uh, at geo cities, we don't, uh,

we don't

[00:46:33] Jonathan Friedman: Where we haven't been there either.

[00:46:34] Jon Rom: We don't, we don't hire a town crier to walk the streets of old, old York to, uh, to let us too, to let the people know about our show.

We rely entirely on the listener, supported advertising, which means that if you're listening to the show and you like the show, there's something you can do to help, which is to tell your friends about it. Just, just casually, bring it up in conversation. Don't make it weird. Just say like, Hey, there's this show that I like, or these two guys, coach, you know what, actually, Jonathan, you're better at this than I am.

How would you casually bring it up in conversation?

[00:47:10] Jonathan Friedman: So let's say it's date night. It's Wednesday, it's date night.

[00:47:14] Jon Rom: I'm there.

[00:47:14] Jonathan Friedman: You're, you're sitting at the keg. You're having, you know, you've ordered your teriyaki sirloin, a nice glass of red wine, or maybe a cocktail,

[00:47:24] Jon Rom: uh, a donut probably,

[00:47:26] Jonathan Friedman: I'm not sure they have donuts, but they do have the Billy minor pie for dessert.

And you know, you're, you're casually talking, you're catching up on the week. Um, you're talking about how excited you are about, you know, continuing your relationship together. You know, maybe you've just moved in. Maybe you're taking that next big step, but while you're sitting there, you know, the music is playing nice.

You know, maybe there's a nice violin in your ear. It's that time that it's, it's perfect to bring up to that partner and say, Hey, um, I was at work today and I was listening to these two Jonathans talk about coaching a character and it's called Character Coaching. Isn't that grand? And there's never a better time to bring it up than a romantic dinner.

Um, and when you bring it up there, your partner will look at you in the eyes and say, wow, I've been hearing about that a lot from all of my friends at work too. But now that you brought it up on date night, I want to give that a listen. That does sound grand. Indeed, indeed. In Indubitable doubly. That's something that I want to listen to.

Um, so if you're going out on a date night or just going to hang out with the friends and having a nice conversation about the things and the stuff, give us a share, give us a, uh, an IRL like, and, uh, tell your friends about us because, uh, we're excited to have them as listeners.

[00:48:52] Jon Rom: Oh, okay. Well, you get points.

That was mostly an advertisement for the keg just now. But, you know, I think he got the point across people know, people know that if they share or they can share on Twitter or Facebook or just, or, or like our posts on Instagram or do all the, do all the things that you find for under the journal that talks back, uh, or under Jonathan's, uh, handle, which is Jonathan underscore age underscore Friedman.

I think I got that right. Awesome. Then, you can, you can let people know that we exist and you can share one of your, uh, one of your new fines and, and be the first to hit the scene. Uh, like all the cool kids wish that they could.

[00:49:34] Jonathan Friedman: And back to our show.

Back to the show.

So, Jon, I don't know about that blip. That just happened in the timeline, but we did just get a journal reply from Gamora. That's pretty exciting. Let's see if I can read this time.

"This journal interface is using some pretty ancient technology. You, earthlings, have a long way to catch up on that front, but when it comes to getting through to people, I think those like you and Peter share a strange gift, I could rival even Mantis' empath skills. My friend Drax told me it would be helpful to share my thoughts here because it is a space that nurtures honesty. The idea of changing my focus is hard, but I can see your point. I don't want to listen to the voices that only know me as my father's daughter. I can be stronger, better than just that.

I am a guardian. That means that I use my strength to help people who need it most, even when improves to be an ever-growing list.

But that is what makes me happy because it allows me to be who I want to be with the family that I chose. Thank you, human."



[00:50:46] Jon Rom: Well, that's all right. Well, I re I think there was a time in my life when I exclusively refer to other people's humans.

[00:50:53] Jonathan Friedman: I Remember that time.

[00:50:56] Jon Rom: You know, my favorite, I think the best thing you can do, if you have a kid is to introduce them as your human child.

This is just to give people enough pause that they don't ask any further questions.

[00:51:10] Jonathan Friedman: They're thinking what other kinds of children they have.

[00:51:15] Jon Rom: Yeah. But you're not going to ask that. And, you know, in polite society, you're just going to say, okay, whatever. Well, it sounds, it sounds like we got there.

It sounds like we got there. We know what, well, I mean, I'm still a little bit fuzzy what a guardian is, but to her, to Gamora, a guardian, is someone who helps people and, and uses their abilities to do so, even though, even though that, that, that seems to be, uh, Uh, growing insurmountably, tough job, um, during these unprecedented times, but, but that's what it means to Gamora and Gamora identifies as a guardian.

So we, we, we, we're kind of seeing the Gamora uh, recognizes that the legacy is not an all-encompassing thing that, that defines her. It is, it is something that she deals with, but it is not necessarily who she is. She is, she is more defined by her actions by the sounds of them.

[00:52:16] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. And even though she has, uh, you know, some pretty interesting tastes and the technology she uses, like I'll let that jab go.

But, uh, what I think is interesting is. That a legacy or something that you don't like can move from being something that takes over your world to something that you just need to address. Something that you need to talk about, something to sort of desensitizing what that is to you. So talking more about, you know, talking with support about, um, you know, this is a painful thing. Here's, what's going on. Here's why it's bothering me. And here's what we can do to sort of, you know, move and change.

Our focus is really powerful. It's always going to be a part of Gamora but it doesn't need to take over, um, her world. So I think that's an amazing jump. I also love that Drax referred, um, Gamora to the journal that talks back which makes me happy.

Um, you know, Drax, Drax We love Drax.

[00:53:23] Jon Rom: We love her. We love it. We love, we love Drax, and that I know, I know that tech jab hurt a little bit, but you know, think of it this way. Sponges are simple and not complicated. And I still use those every day. You know, not everything, not everything has to be complicated.


The joke. Well, the journal that talks back has that, you know, it has code, it has, uh, uh, UI colors, uh, accessibility options. What more could you ask for? It's simple. It works, you know, you don't have to be futuristic.

[00:53:56] Jonathan Friedman: Well, and there's a coach on the other end to read into respond.

[00:54:00] Jon Rom: Yeah. It's just, it's just people we can put. I mean, I propose that we send people their responses by carrier pigeon, but that was outvoted. So this is, I guess this is the next question.

[00:54:12] Jonathan Friedman: The council Jonathan just gave you a dirty look.

[00:54:16] Jon Rom: The dirtiest look, probably because of the pigeon shortage of 1932.

[00:54:20] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah, probably my, you don't, you don't look a day over 60 men.

You look great.

[00:54:26] Jon Rom: Thank you. Thank you.

[00:54:28] Jonathan Friedman: Um, so here's the segue we have. Uh,

[00:54:34] Jon Rom: I know we're reverting. We're getting worse at it again.

[00:54:36] Jonathan Friedman: You sick on it while I'm, while I'm trying to segue. It's

[00:54:41] Jon Rom: I can't, I can't, it's just, it's so hard to, okay.

Sorry. Do it again. Do it again. Leave the first one in, so they know that I messed up the first one, but do another one.

[00:54:50] Jonathan Friedman: Oh wow. So here's a segue. Um, and it comes from, uh, Kate Hefford who's, uh, actually a good friend of mine, chair, um, known them for years. They're awesome. Um, and she brought up this concept called the Ick and the Ick is.

The first time in a relationship or a friendship, any kind of relationship, uh, you notice something that grosses you out and you can't unsee it or unhear it. It's been a thing going around on this tik tok but I made an Ick joke and, she wasn't impressed with me, to be honest, but that's okay.

[00:55:34] Jon Rom: Oh God. Okay.

But what's the question?

[00:55:39] Jonathan Friedman: So the question is how can you get over the Ick? So let's say you start a new relationship. Everything is going great. You go to sleep and you realize that they snore, or you wake up in the morning. You're like, wow, sweetie, what's her breakfast? And you're like, oh yeah, let's have cereal.

Let's have cinnamon toast crunch. And then that person puts the milk first. And then the cereal, the Ick does that make sense? Does that concept make sense? It's the thing you're your relationship is going well. Everything is going hunky Dory. And then all of a sudden, there's this one thing that grosses you out, you know, cleans ears with Q-tips, um, takes baths exclusively instead of showers.

[00:56:28] Jon Rom: You're digging such a hole, Jonathan, right now, there is a list we're just alienating more and more of the audience as you go further, please stop.

Okay. I think I got the idea. So in my mind, there's, there's an important phenomenon that people have to realize, which is, um, I call it the new relationship smell, uh, uh, uh, uh, as, as famously described by, uh, the McElroy brothers, but basically the chemicals that go on in your brain when you're going entering a relationship are not the same chemicals that you get uh, once you've been in that relationship for longer, and it doesn't just have to be romantic relationships, it can also be friendships. Some people refer to this as the honeymoon period. Um, uh, but I just look at it as your, your brain is excited about this new relationship is about getting to know someone and discovering what you like about them.

And for a lot of people, when you're infatuated with someone, it is hard to see, uh, any of their faults, um, until you do. And I think that that, that's what the Ick is referring to the Ick is that moment where the shine comes off the apple a little bit. And you suddenly noticed something you don't like, but in reality, uh, That thing was always there.

You just hadn't noticed it yet. And there's nothing wrong with having things that you don't like about another person, especially when you're in a romantic relationship with them. Uh, if you think that another person is completely perfect, the reality is, is probably you just haven't maybe dug in to find the things that you don't like.

And, and there's some, you know, some generational wisdom says that you can love the things that you don't like. You can even love the flaws because it makes that person who they are. I think that in reality, in, in, in practicality, the thing is, is that you like what you like. And you don't want, like what you don't like.

And if the thing is something that doesn't have to be done right in front of you, you could ask for that. Uh, if the thing is something that you have to observe, you don't have to focus on it. There's, you can distract yourself while it's happening. Uh, you can express that you don't like this thing to the person and see if they are willing to modify it or, or, uh, do it less often.

But if it's, if it's something that they can't change or they're just not interested in changing, then it becomes a, uh, an exploration and accepting the weird thing. Now, how far does this stretch? How icky can the thing be before you say, ah, actually I'm out? It can be as, as innocuous as you want. It could be as subtle as, you know, cleaning the ears.

Uh, if they Icks yucks your yum that bad, and you decide that you're not interested in being involved with this person for that reason, that is your right, but you have to make a decision. And how many relationships is, is that, uh, uh, uh, approach going to, uh, uh, stop you from? And you have to decide if that's worth feeling the most comfortable that you can be versus a little bit of discomfort, but getting to keep the relationship going.

I know that was a [01:00:00] long-winded answer, but, uh, thank you. Wait, I, and I, and I'm not just interested in, in my, uh, my, my expertise on the subject, or what do you think, Jonathan? How does this strike you?

[01:00:11] Jonathan Friedman: I like your scientific approach. I never really, when Kate brought it up, I didn't realize I didn't connect it to the honeymoon period thing.

You know, you can find these Icks at any point in your relationship, but I agree generally it's at the beginning, or, you know, after a couple of months, you start to notice. Wow. That's a that's a strange thing that that person does. But, um, the, the question is similar to your question, at what point does, is, is that thing actually an issue, you know, when you, later on, if you choose as, as, as a partnership to have children together, is does the person do all the things you wanted them to do?

Like, do you have the same values? Do you approach parenting? Do you approach all the big issues in the same way? If you have all of that, but that person, you know, eats, I don't even know what they do. Like the clean the ears thing. Are they exclusively?

[01:01:07] Jon Rom: They eat oranges after brushing.

[01:01:09] Jonathan Friedman: They drink a liter of orange juice after brushing their teeth because they love the flavor.

Does that really really matter

in, in, in the, in the general scheme of things? The answer can be, yes. My question to the person who says yes is, I would ask you to take, like, take out a journal. Take some time to reflect on, okay, what's all the pros of that relationship for all the cons. The cons are literally that Ick but you have, you know, you both really value time with your family and you both really value traveling and you both have, you know, complimentary, complimentary long-term plans.

You know, I, I would take some time to reflect on that and take a look at what you really want. If it's somebody who doesn't drink a liter of orange juice after brushing teeth over the traveling and all of that other stuff, again, totally. Um, your choice. I wouldn't take the time to spend so much time on that.

And if it really bothers you, you can always say, Hey, like I found this other orange juice that doesn't taste bad after you brush your teeth. Science has really evolved and you know, you can offer that replacement. It doesn't need to be so. Does it need to be so icky, it can just be a conversation or just a weird quirk that somebody does.

I know when my girlfriend and I started dating, uh, her Ick with me was that, um, sometimes when I get anxious or overwhelmed, I just like deep in my head I declutter. So I go through all of my stuff and, you know, throw what I don't need and get new stuff. So for example, um, I had a lot of cutlery that I've had since I moved out when I was 17 from that first rush.

And I was just, you know, frustrated and tired and I'm like, all right, cool. All of this stuff needs to go in the garbage. I'm going to buy new stuff, going to buy new clothes. I'm going to start fresh. And in my head, that makes sense. That's something I need to do. But in her head, she's like what happens when we move in together one day and he just throws out all my stuff.

And that was a really good opportunity for us to talk about why I declutter and how I would never actually throw out her stuff because that's her stuff. Of course, I would never throw out her stuff. And someone like Jon who's known me for 10 for, oh my God. Like 15 years or 16 years knows that I would never throw so much stuff out.

I'm a pretty kind person I'd like to think. But yeah, I new relationship with somebody who's known me for two months, seeing that it's like, oh, damn, this is a weird thing that that person chooses to do. So I think it can also be a really good opportunity to have a conversation about the Ick to see what's going on.

Why do they do that thing? We're humans, we're animals and animals have weird behaviors that happen that get reinforced over time, or it could even be, um, you know, a cultural thing. It could be something they've learned from their parents. Like I, my grandfather used to scratch his back or behind his ear, with the key I thought that was such.

[01:04:18] Jon Rom: I hate that. I hate that.

[01:04:21] Jonathan Friedman: Like this. It's strange behavior, but I noticed that my dad does that too sometimes I'm like, why do you do that? And he says, oh yeah, my Zaidi used to do that. I do that. I guess it's a weird thing. And probably a dangerous thing because keys are not clean, one of the least clean things.

Um, but I mean, they've survived this long. So is it a problem?

[01:04:48] Jon Rom: maybe? Who knows?

[01:04:49] Jonathan Friedman: Yeah. So, uh, the TLDR of this conversation is when it comes to the Ick, think about what you'd like to stick to. So if it's the values and the things that make a relationship to you, strong things like, Hey, you know, we both like to travel, we both like to explore, we both like to try new things, we both want kids. Write down all of those stuff, see if that excites you in that specific relationship. And then beside it, write down all the things that are ick. If the,

[01:05:26] Jon Rom: can I, can I, can I come? I think I just came up with something. Weight the Ick against what you think is pretty sick.

[01:05:33] Jonathan Friedman: Amazing. I love that.

[01:05:37] Jon Rom: Thank you.

Wow. I'm like TLDR TLDR is like longer than your are.

[01:05:43] Jonathan Friedman: I'm sorry, but, but yeah, again, weigh out the pros and the cons. Write out what you really love about that relationship. And what's on the X side and see, what's really important to you and be like..

[01:05:58] Jon Rom: Real quick. You tell Jonathan, you tell me what what's what's your Ick with me?

What's what do I do that Icks you out?

[01:06:07] Jonathan Friedman: Oh, It's your yawns.

[01:06:13] Jon Rom: Oh, no. Well, we've cut them all out of, for sure. From, from every quarter.

[01:06:19] Jonathan Friedman: No, it's not like you don't think your mouth is that big until you yawn.

And you just don't expect you're like, damn like good enough. Like that's, that's something that he does, but you can't, you can't like that's, that's how you yawn. That's not something that like, there's no replacement behavior for yawning. It's yawning. I'm sorry. What's what's your ick with me?

[01:06:46] Jon Rom: And we got very vulnerable on the show.

Uh, I have no ick with you, your perfect,

[01:06:54] Jonathan Friedman: uh, um, where do people find us?

[01:06:57] Jon Rom: Oh yeah, it's definitely how you segue.

[01:07:02] Jonathan Friedman: So where do people find this, Jon?

[01:07:06] Jon Rom: They find us on the social media platforms that they are using, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, um, Uh, NMU, which was the, uh, social media platform that we created for, for jokes to let you have the short conversations you had when you were pre-teen for your millennial.

Um, uh, I don't know where else, what are our handles? How can they find us? You have all those details.

[01:07:36] Jonathan Friedman: So you can follow us on Instagram at journal that talks back, you can follow us on Tik TOK, at Jonathan Friedman 1993. I'm going to switch it to coach Jonathan or something like that soon. But for now that's what it is.

Uh, can find us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, either under Jonathan Friedman or Jonathan Rom, or the journal talks back. And if you're interested in learning more about, uh, And what we do, uh, you can feel free to check us out at and hilariously I think that's the first time that we actually gave accurate handles for where we are.

[01:08:14] Jon Rom: And that is the secret to marketing baby

Character Coaching is a production of The Journal that Talks Back a product at Frame of Mind Coaching to get accessible coaching for just $200 a month, book, a free intake call at Our music is The Swindler by The Original Orchestra, featuring Ian Post. Our editing is done by one of the Jonathan's on the show, which one? We'll never tell.