Separating The Gold From The Garbage: We Talk Supplements w/ Industry Insider Ben Harris
Today we are going to be talking about a subject that we have not really covered in to too much depth, and that is the supplement industry. You might hear me or many other thought leaders talking about supplementation, about vitamins, about powders and nutrients and supplements… But you might not know much about the industry. You might think “well, is this for me? Is this something that I actually need to do?” And you're probably overwhelmed just by the sheer amount of options that are out there. So to help us sort through this a little bit, we've invited Benjamin Harris to the show. He is the co-founder of Nickel and Dime Supplement Club, a new company that is trying to make supplementation cheaper, easier, and more affordable for everybody.
Although this episode is not a sales pitch, we definitely do talk a little bit about their products and how they're different. But then, we go into how you can discern the facts from the B.S. when it comes to supplementation, and a bunch of other incredible life hacks around productivity and motivation. I think you guys are really going to enjoy this episode, and if you do make sure to leave a comment!
In this episode, we discuss:
- Who is Ben Harris, and how did he get to where he is today?
- What's wrong with the supplement industry today? What problem is Ben trying to solve?
- Is supplementation for everyone? Do “everyday Joes” need to take supplements?
- What products are Ben and his company focusing on, and why?
- What supplements are important, for what part of the population, and why?
- A discussion of protein intake – are we eating too much, too little, or what?
- Which supplements are manufacturers “cheaping out” on and putting ineffective ingredients in?
- What's the issue with “proprietary blends,” and how do manufacturers mislead us with them?
- A discussion of the lack of regulations around supplements, and what it means to you
- What is a pre-workout supplement? Should you use it or not? Why and why not?
- What other hacks, habits, and routines does Ben Harris use to perform better?
- How did Ben overcome his struggles with ADHD?
- A discussion on nootropics – should you use them? If so, which ones?
- What are some tools or services Ben Harris can't live without?
- What is this week's homework assignment?
- A discussion of habits and how they can transform your life
- Where can you learn more and check out Ben's work?
- What's the #1 takeaway for this episode?
Resources Mentioned in This Episode:
- Nickel & Dime Supplement Club
- Our first interview with Robb Wolf
- Our second interview with Robb Wolf
- Wired To Eat, the latest book by Robb Wolf
- Magnesium Glycenate supplements
- The One Thing by Gary Keller
- Yerba Mate
- Modafinil (Wikipedia)
- Limitless (The Movie)
- Headspace (The App)
Favorite Quotes from Ben Harris:
Introduction: Welcome to the Award-winning Superhuman Academy Podcast, where we interview extraordinary people to give you the skills and strategies to overcome the impossible. And now here's your host, Jonathan Levi.
Jonathan Levi: This episode is brought to you by Organifi. You guys, one of the only things that every nutritional expert that we've had on the show seems to actually agree on is that we all need to eat more vegetables, eat more greens, eat organic, cut out all the processed junk.
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Before we get started. I just want to let you guys know that this week's episode is brought to you by my new online course Become a Superhuman. And yes, it sounds exactly like the title of the podcast, but this is actually an online course where we go into the various aspects of improving your health. Specifically your endocrine health more specifically. Yes, more specifically. Getting your testosterone up to the optimal levels. Now whether you're a male or a female, as we've learned in numerous episodes of the show, testosterone is the ultimate feel-good motivation, improved health, improved fitness, improved body composition super drug. Okay. So everything from your mood to your recovery time and everything in between is affected by your body's endocrine health and what my team and I have done is we've actually taken years of my own self-experimentation, years of research, every possible literature and study we could find, and we've condensed it into a simple three to four-hour program that you can follow along and make simple, safe, and easy adjustments to your lifestyle to improve your endocrine health.
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Greeting, SuperFriends, and welcome to this week's show, which as you remember is brought to you because someone out there left a review. And in this case that someone is Steph1 from France, who says I have hooked five stars. I discovered this podcast a few months ago and I've listened to most of the episodes. The content is of great quality. Jonathan makes an excellent job in asking the questions that listeners want. Deeper knowledge in life hacking is the way to go. And my inspiration comes from this podcast.
Well, thank you very, very much, Steph for making this week's episode happen. And for those of you who have not left a review while it is on you to make sure that we release another one next week onto today's episode, our guest today, we are going to be talking about a subject that we have not really covered into too much depth.
And that is the supplement industry. You might hear me or any other thought leaders talking about supplementation about vitamins, about powders and nutrients and supplements, but you might not know much about the industry you might think, well, is this for me? Is this something that I actually need to do?
And you're probably overwhelmed just by the sheer amount of options that are out there. So to help us sort through this a little bit, we've invited Benjamin Harris to the show. He is the co-founder of Nickel and Dime Supplement Club, a new company that is trying to make supplementation cheaper, easier, and more affordable for everybody.
And although this episode is not a sales pitch, we definitely do talk a little bit about their products and how they're different. And then we go into how you can discern the facts from the BS when it comes to supplementation and a bunch of other incredible life hacks around productivity and motivation.
So I think you guys are really going to enjoy this episode and if you do make sure to leave a comment without any further ado, my new super friend, Mr. Benjamin Harris
Mr. Benjamin Harris, welcome to the show, my friend, how are you doing today?
Ben Harris: I'm doing well, Jonathan, I appreciate you asking. Thanks for having me on how are you?
Jonathan Levi: Yeah. Living the dream and living the dream. I'm really excited to hear a little bit about your journey and what you guys are up to.
Ben Harris: Thank you very much. Yeah. Looking forward to talking about it.
Jonathan Levi: So Ben, for those who don't know, know about what you guys are doing, tell me a little bit about your background and specifically kind of how you got to be where you are today and what you guys are working on.
Ben Harris: Yep. So I have always been a born hustler per se. You know, I was the kid making flyers on my own at nine years old, putting them in mailboxes, mowing lawns, selling lemonade, you know, stealing grapefruits down the road, then selling them to my neighbor, you know, anyway I could actually find it ways to make money. I was doing it. And not even in a way of, you know, cause I wanted money.
It was just, it was the chase. It was the hustle per se. I don't want to be cliche, you know, with anything in saying that. And that had always stuck with me. And I always wanted to own my own business and knew I had to know how to market and how to sell. I couldn't teach myself how to sell. So when I had got out of college, that was my first career choice and I had sold 480P, the payroll company, which is, you know, a $4 billion conglomerate, incredible company.
And, you know, going door to door with them was how I had acquired that trait, you know, had, had worked my way up, you know, doing that within being a sales rep for them outside sales, with, you know, conveying problems to people, helping them solve them and then, you know, attend ultimately acquiring them as clients.
So, uh, that had led me down to the road and here I am with, you know, quitting my job and finally becoming an entrepreneur. I had some side businesses on the side. Who with doing some e-commerce work that we've had with actually a previous workout supplement company. But now we, in the midst of a crowdfunding campaign are actually going on our 3rd day as we speak on Indiegogo for Nickel and Dime Supplement Club. What that is is the first of our kind, uh, brandless workout supplement membership company. So we are providing supplements the same premium quality at prices that have been unheard of due to the fact that they were brandless and they are going from a direct manufacturer to a consumer with a very similar business model to a dollar shave club.
I guess I don't like to, to necessarily model a business cause we are doing it in our own way, but you know, to perk people's ears up, we say, you know, the dollar shave club of supplements. So people like, oh, I know what that is, but that's, you know, really kind of the truncated version of coming down, the Ben Harris train tracks too, to where we are now.
Jonathan Levi: Awesome. So let me ask a challenging question, right? Which is what's wrong with the supplement industry today? I mean, why start this company? There's so many huge companies out there like GNC and Optimum Nutrition doing this stuff. What's the problem that you guys are looking to solve?
Ben Harris: Loaded question, Jon, I'm just kidding.
Um, so with the supplement industry is that we found is extremely overpriced. And it's something that, I mean, my business partner, Mike, and I, as college students found ourselves, emptying our paychecks to go to GNC. And it was something that with dealing with sales reps who were commissioned. That is said, you know, there was no trust there, you know, with recommending products that they are actually being pushed from brokers to that they get the most commission off of.
And, you know, we did know that firsthand from our first supplement company, because we have been in this space with being inside retail stores and seeing that, you know, what was really going on behind the scenes and thinking to ourselves, you know, get Mike and I scratched our heads. That's not fair. You know, that's not even recommending what people, it's not listening to their problems.
You know, what are they after? What do they want to do rather than pushing a product that you know is really helping ourselves rather than the actual customer, and that can perk their ears up from the retail storefront, but then with selling on, you know, huge e-commerce conglomerates that do sell supplements, that we all know. It is just incredibly cluttered. You know, everyone claims they're superior, everyone claims they're the best. And how do you choose? How do you educate yourself? And that was the problem that we really thought, Hey, this is something that makes us different. This is something that we can solve. And there was truly, truly a gap here that we know we can bridge.
Jonathan Levi: So, let me ask another kind of tough question, which is, you know, someone in the audience might be listening right now. I'm going, Hey, you know, I'm not a meathead. I'm not a bodybuilder. Like what the hell do I need supplements? And you know, I've got my Haute and whole thinking on this, but I want to ask you, you know, is this supplementation as a whole? Is this something for people who are trying to be competitive athletes? Is this for the everyday Joe and maybe, you know, as a follow-on to that question if we could go into kind of some of the supplements? And why you think they have value for your average person listening on their commute to work right now?
Ben Harris: Of course. And I will say that supplements, the workout supplements primarily are what they say. They supplement the work that you're doing most important is diet and exercise. I'm definitely not here to say that it's going to get you to your goal. It's what it does. It supplements your way there.
So our startup and how we have primarily derived our six products from what we're gonna do right now is we have a, pre-workout a BCAA an organic green juice. And then with our three pill products, multivitamin fish, oil, and turmeric that are all derived from around, you know, recovery and the anti-inflammatory aspects of them.
And that's something that is huge for whether you want to be a bodybuilder or, you know, you like to go to planet fitness a few days a week after work to really just keep your blood flowing and, you know, maintain a healthy lifestyle. And that's our target. That is what we are after which we help all of our members save more money than they ever have with shopping for supplements, but more importantly, say more time. Cause that's something that they can't get back. We wouldn't help every member get back to what they want to do and to do what they do best, you know, whether it's their career, whether it's spending time with their loved ones, with their families, that's what we want to give back to people.
Jonathan Levi: So walk me through those supplements. I mean, I know a good bit about them. I know about BCAs and stuff like that, but I think a lot of people out there might not know about these might not know, you know, why it's something that they need to add on top of eating healthy.
Ben Harris: Sure. So I'd say, definitely want to start off with talking about our organic green juice, which we have our full list of ingredients on our Indiegogo page and on our website, NickelDimeSubClub.com.
But this is really something that has a ton of vegetable extract. A lot of mushroom extract that's in it, fully organic certified in our facility. And fully organic. And is your servings of greens within a day? I mean, organic green juice is definitely something that's hitting the market and becoming widely, widely popular, and I'm not going to lie. It doesn't taste like rainbows. You know, what's going down your throat, but I guess the vegetables never really have tasted good. But it's something that's going to save you a ton of time and something that gives you a lot of natural energy helps you sleep better and something that's going to make your quality of life extremely better.
And with muscle recovery too, I mean, definitely getting your daily dose of fibers, you know, to help with recovery. BCAA is something that we feel like is really emerging in terms of recovery. It's been around for a while. We do all know that but it's still great for protein synthesis and really does almost everything that I, protein powder would.
Are we going to add protein into our line? Absolutely. But we wanted to start off with BCAA with knowing that when you want to do muscle recovery, you still need to get your protein intake through food, which is, you know, when really broken down correctly and you know, your macros, you can reach that daily.
And take a protein in terms of grams with, you know, how much you want away or how much you weigh right now. Is that something that we do encourage to with back to my original statement, you know, workout and diet, routines, and diets are, you know, the best thing to do when you're looking to, to change your life and change your body, we're here to help you.
Jonathan Levi: Let me ask you another kind of really tough question, Ben, which is, you know, I've heard all kinds of on the spectrum in terms of protein intake. You know, some people say, or some people love to say that Americans eat too much protein and other people love to say, you know, specifically, people who emphasize, uh, paleo, that we don't eat enough protein.
What's your kind of take on it?
Ben Harris: Well, my take on is that we don't eat enough and I'll follow with that with you can't intake all of your protein at one time during the day because your body just cannot break down those amounts in grams in one sitting, you know, you can't have 80 grams in one day and thanked that you've almost got it all breakfast because your body won't break it down.
It has to be evenly distributed. And I personally believe that from a little bit of scientific backing from some articles, I've read some case studies, but it's something that has worked better for me in the past, personally, which different bodies reactively to everything. But in terms of protein intake, I definitely do not think we eat enough when we think we are.
Jonathan Levi: You know, I tend to agree. I think, you know, as people remove carbohydrates from their diet, they need to fill it with something else. And you know, there's not much that you can fill with, you can fill with fats or you can fill with, uh, proteins. You can fill obviously with kind of non-combustible carbohydrate or nine digestible fiber. But, uh, ultimately you're going to need to get the nutrients in somehow and it should be a mix of protein and fat.
Ben Harris: Absolutely. And, you know, aiming. For certain numbers and, and to really break it down because your body reacts so much more to your quality of intake that you're having than people think.
And, you know, they really don't experience that until they switch it up to realize how much their quality of life does really improve, you know, from food cravings and stuff like that. I actually had a coach in high school, which I don't know how true this is because sometimes all the stories goes, but he would always yell at us that food is not meant to taste good.
It's meant to fuel your body. I mean, your body's like a car. They have to maintain oil changes. You have to take care of it. What you put in, you're going to get out. I mean, he used to always yell at us that, you know, who cares, what it tastes like. It's not meant to taste good. It's meant to be there. So that's something that's stuck with me.
I wouldn't take that for, to the bank or anything like that, but yeah, I did want to take it in there.
Jonathan Levi: Right, I think it, you know, Rob Wolf, I really love his work because he talks about like hyper palatability and how our tongues are so over kind of traumatized because we eat super salty, super sweet, super spicy, you know, foods that we just should not have access to that quantity of sugar and salt and fat and all this kind of like crap and genetically engineered Cheeto dust that tastes amazing. So I would say like, food should taste good to you, you know, but it does. It's another thing that's going to taste as good as freaking Cheetos, you know?
Ben Harris: Yeah. We love them.
Jonathan Levi: Then let me ask you another thing, which is talk to me about efficacy and supplements actually containing what they claim to.
And you know, the other thing, I think I had a big epiphany in the process of doing the show when I realized, you know, a couple of different guests told me about magnesium and how important it is and magnesium is one of these like things that everyone's deficient in and it's needed in 1200 processes in the body and everything.
Then I learned by interviewing folks on the show that magnesium oxide is pretty much not absorbed in the body. And even magnesium citrate is absorbed, you know, 2% or 10%, it's the glycinates and that urinates and all these other more expensive forms. And then you go to a GNC or you go to a CVS and you look at all these great magnesium supplements.
And what do you see? Citrate and oxide. And it's like very clear that these manufacturers don't actually care about me getting the benefit of the product. Do you think that that's the case with a lot of supplements out there and how do we avoid that kind of stuff? You know, which product specifically do we need to look out for? That kind of idea.
Ben Harris: Yeah, that is a great question. I'm glad you asked. So with our supplement manufacturing and one thing that there is a huge problem with as well, but I personally have a story from is when buying supplements, taking them. As I said earlier, different people's bodies react differently. For example, you know, you can have a low tolerance for caffeine. I can have a very high tolerance for caffeine. We take the same. Pre-workout, I'm bugging out because it's the most caffeine I've ever had in my entire life. And you're like, dude, I can go take a nap, which is just something that is, I think, you know, somewhat up to your consumption daily, but hereditary as well.
And with some of these supplements, when you look on the back and read the supplement facts, you see. You know, Jonathan's blend and a proprietary matrix, which it doesn't tell you what's in the actual product. Why? Cause it's rice flour. It's fillers. It's 90% something that doesn't even matter. And it's not a scientifically, you know, dose that's measured out and, you know, there's the argument that, well, within this Greta, you only need a certain amount, nothing else matters. So they just put it in there so you can mix it with, you know, six to eight ounces of water and stuff like that. But that's something that we found that I didn't think was fair.
You know, if somebody is trusting us enough to take our product and to use it for their results, heck they're going to know every compound that's in that thing. So with our first company, that's one thing that we did with all of our supplements.
And one thing that we are definitely doing with Nickel and Dime Supplement Club is really letting everybody know here's what's in it, here's what it does, why you should have it, why you should not have it. Cause sometimes, you know, like I said, it's not for everybody. And magnesium is something that is extremely, extremely essential for bone health, obviously that everybody knows.
But I think with your question when it derives back to the original thing is I think manufacturers are making these for their markup, you know, for their dollar, you know, with everyone saying that certain types of magnesium are not beneficial, they're not, but they're being made for the profit margins for the dollars gets bought, you know, the end of the day. That's what these big corporations are after.
Jonathan Levi: Definitely. Definitely.
Are there any other kinds of supplements that you've seen in the market where you're just like, dude, you know, they're not putting in the actual stuff that I need to actually get the benefit of the product here? So for example, like, you know, creatines pretty easy creatine, monohydrate like, it's pretty hard to mess that up.
Magnesium and example of one where you really want high-quality probiotics is probably another one where it's like, they're putting just junk. And can you think of any others where people really need to read those labels and be super careful?
Ben Harris: Yeah. And you know, and not to revert back to it again, I would definitely say all pre-workout supplements. That's something that, where there are definitely a lot of blends because it's a high dollar markup product for companies. Now let's say they may not make as much profit on something like a creatine but they're going to mark up their pre-workout because they, you know, it's so special, it's popular, it gives you energy, you know, all of that, blah, blah, blah.
But you know, there could be. Some dangerous fillers in those products.
Jonathan Levi: Right. Tons of sugar, other stuff like that as well.
Ben Harris: Absolutely. That's really something that, you know, you do need to look out for consumers when you're at a GNC or just looking at the stuff and facts on Amazon. We are fortunate that most companies do provide that, but to really read it and you know, to not trust when you see those blends, see those matrix says because, you know, why would they hide that from us? Let's think about it, you know?
Jonathan Levi: And I think it's so mind-blowing that supplements are pretty much unregulated by the FDA. You know, it's like, you can really put whatever you want in there as long as it's not food. And if you were selling a bottled cup of coffee, I mean, so I was an investor in a coffee company for a number of years and in a health bar company.
And if it's labeled as food, You know, they want to check your factory every few weeks and they want to know everything that goes into it. You need to get all kinds of certifications on the machines and the ingredients. And you know, if there's one grain of rice that isn't organic and you say it's organic, God forbid, but if you just call it a supplement, nobody cares, right? It doesn't matter what goes into the product. All you have to say is, you know, the FDA has not evaluated these claims, which is mind-blowing.
Ben Harris: I really don't understand. I'd love to get your take. You know, why is that? Why has that not entered this space yet? It's something that intrigues me to no end.
I don't understand why, you know, anybody can just go on PowerPoint, you know, create a clip, art, slap a label on something, and boom they're in business. You know, when I first stumbled across this industry, I felt that it couldn't be that easy, but it was, and that's something that, you know, maybe that's why there is not a lot of trust in this industry.
You know, it's hard to gain that when there are one it's a competitive space, and two when there are so many claims going around because they're not extremely regulated. So you've got to make your own claims. You know, I don't know why there's not more of a handcuff with every business that is selling consumable products to people.
Jonathan Levi: Right. And it's like, you know, on the one end you have medication like on the far end of the spectrum there's medication and that takes years of FDA trials. And on the other end, you have food and it's like, supplements just falls right. Between the F and the D. And no one, no one cares and people, you know, get sick as hell because a lot of stuff is, is junk.
I wanted to ask you, Ben, you know, you talked a little bit about pre-workout stuff. I haven't taken a pre-workout in years and I wanted to ask you, you know, why is that something that someone might want to consider, I mean, sell me on this idea that I need to take something before my workout.
Ben Harris: Sure. And you probably picked a good person to ask some definitely an adrenaline junkie when it comes to pre-workout coffee. Really, anything, probably some I could live without, with pre-workout, you want to have something that is right for you. So what I mean by that there are some products out there that have, you know, a hundred, 125 milligrams caffeine, but then some that have all the way up to I've seen 600, which is too much for the human body, especially in one serving.
So I definitely, you know, with pre-workout, someone that's always on the go I'm, especially at work. You know, if you work out in the morning, it's something to definitely jumpstart you. I recommended working out in a fasted state. If it's someone that you know is at the end of the day, based on your personal schedule, I would also recommend it, you know, something now to push you through and it really preps your body.
You know, with taking beta-alanine and your pre-workout something that, you know, a lot of people get scared of condensed, you know, that itchy feeling, you know what I mean? But it's all it's doing is prepping your muscles, you know, for protein synthesis and with creating and it as well, not a whole lot, but you know, some that's in it.
To get your body ready. It's more than just energy. It's something that is going to help you get warmed up and something that's going to power you through. And even, you know, it's a little bit of a placebo effect too, which is okay. You know, once it helps you, you know, reach your goals and to do what you're accomplishing to do. And, you know, at the effective price point, it's something that I think is extremely beneficial to anyone's work.
Jonathan Levi: So is this kind of a no-go if you're a night workout person?
Ben Harris: Yeah I think the only way to really figure that answer out is to try for yourself. So I've had some pre-workouts that have not allowed me to sleep, you know, at night, especially the first couple times I took it.
I remember those days, but, you know, I would say anytime before eight o'clock, you know, if you're going at there midnight, you know, I had a couple of friends in college who did do that, but me personally, I wouldn't recommend it to listeners.
Jonathan Levi: Right. Yeah. I mean, uh, they all say, you know, it's pretty commonly known that if you get a lot of movement in, in the morning, it's better for you and it's better for your sleep and you'll sleep better or you'll wake up better and you'll have a better day and the whole deal.
But I, I can't motivate myself. Part of it is like if I don't go in the evening that I have to go to the other branch of the gym because they're not open in the morning. It's like crossing the whole city and morning traffic and it just becomes this whole like a nightmare.
Ben Harris: So one thing leads to another.
Jonathan Levi: Ben, I want to ask you about some other kind of performance hacks or habits or routines that you have, you know, as a busy entrepreneur, what are the kinds of things that you are doing to improve your own performance?
Ben Harris: Yeah. So one thing about doing what we do, you know, really day in and day out is knowing how to self-assess the self really know what you're good at knowing what you're bad at, you know, I'm willing enough to admit what I'm bad at and, you know, try and correct them as much as humanly possible, which I am not an organized person at all.
Um, so one thing that. I have really worked on with our team here is no organizing our daily activities. You know, I love the book, the one thing by Gary Keller, you know, if you're chasing more than two rabbits, you're not going to catch any of them. You know, the very first quote, right? When you open the flap and it's something that, you know, we prioritize and it was hard for me to admit that some tasks, per se, we call them kills and our business, some kills are, you know, higher priority than others. And you can't do everything at once. You have to do one after another, you know, deep one thing. So that's one thing that I have really been working on that has skyrocketed my productivity.
So every two weeks we have a full team chat. It's full virtual meeting and, you know, we discuss, we lay off about 15, 20 minutes of everything that has to be done. I mean, it's almost just a round table, you know, despite fire chat, but that's the only way to describe it of, I was just listing out things that have to be done. And then we spend some time prioritizing them.
You know what needs to be done first and then what is the most important? So it really goes through three cuts if you will. And then we call them kills and we assess kills. So we hold each other accountable, who's got to get what done. And then beyond that, you can then organize them to, you know, what has to be done per day and then per hour, which you set aside time to work.
And you set aside time to relax because you have to have to obviously just, you know, much more time working than relaxing, but it is necessary. Uh, you know, when you're on this 24/7, and then living with business partners and going at it, you know, all day, there has to be time to unwind and which you completely separate yourself, otherwise that you into a process of overthinking, you into a process of, you know, misjudging yourself and that never leaves anything good. At least it is not for me. So, you know, with my personal experience organization has been something that. You know, I was terrible at, so just like you, my ADHD levels, a kid was through the roof.
I mean, like when people say, you know, they grew up doing such and sets. I grew up in the principal's office, always misbehaving, never concentrating, incredibly hyper. And you know, when I don't know exactly what I have to do, I'll chase my tail for 12 straight hours. And now, you know, I'll check my emails and I read a blog then it leads me to another piece of content, free ebook download. I'm like, Oh, I want to read that I do this, that I check my phone. I'm back in my email thread. And it just goes on and on and on and on.
So with us really honing in. On being organized. When I have to know what I have to get done, I will get it done, but it's taking that initial first step to now really cultivating a habit, you know, in our culture that has really, really helped us with productivity.
Jonathan Levi: Wow. Yeah. You know, I, I hear this time and time and time again, and I thought I was the only one. And then I think I heard it originally from a psychiatrist at some point or some doctor sent me to a psychologist about ADD when I was young and, uh, you know, they said, well, you probably have systems on systems on systems.
And I was like, well, what do you mean? And they're like, well, most people with add, have to overcompensate and they build crutches around them. And you know, today, if you look at our business, it's exactly like you described it's systems on systems, on systems that organize. And like everyone has a protocol under which they do the work that they do. And it's exactly that it's such a powerful way to overcome this ADD cause it's like, you don't get distracted. You just know that after a comes B and after become, see
Ben Harris: Exactly, when it's structured it's something that I'll follow because I will admit that I'm determined and I'm focused, and I know where I want to go.
And if I've laid out a platform to get there, which I think that's going to get us there, I'll do it. But it's the organization that was such a tough key for me because I would just sit there and completely remained on focus. I mean, my intention span is still about, you know, 0.6 seconds, but, you know, if I can revert back and pull myself back to where I need to be, that's what's beneficial. And the system that works for me and ultimately for our business.
Jonathan Levi: Amazing. Let me ask you this. Since you're the supplement guy, have you tinkered around with neurotropic or smart drugs at all?
Ben Harris: I haven't personally, you know, with Nickel and Dime Supplement Club, we plan on expanding to a full product line. So anything you would see on the internet or instead of a GNC vitamin shop, we want to have that in our brainless inventory, but to counter, you know, since we're on here talking about it, you know, what's your take on it?
Jonathan Levi: I mean, I'm a big fan of neurotropic and stimulants were really important for me kind of getting through school.
I think there's like you said, there's a product for everyone out there. And I think, you know, some people will get by fine with switching out their coffee for a latte. Some people, you know, will do really well with the lion's mane coffee and other people will need something a little bit more clinical if you will like a person.
I think it's, it's a matter of, obviously first talking to your doctor and making sure that it's okay and safe for you with your conditions and your medications and everything to test it out. But I do think, you know, it's a matter of playing around with the safe options out there and the ones that are not addictive and not habit-forming and, and stuff like that.
And, you know, there are so many great substances out there and also there are pretty much the entire world population is using one form of stimulant or another they're using coffee or they're using tea or, you know, they're chewing coco leaves. And so it's just a matter of finding one that's safe and beneficial and gets you where you need to go. At least that's my take on it.
Ben Harris: What's your favorite?
Jonathan Levi: Oh, I got a lot of favorites, I think for daily consumption, I really, really like Yerba Martay as opposed to coffee, because it's got that nice calming effect as well.
Ben Harris: Okay. I'll have to try it.
Jonathan Levi: Yeah. But if you really want to get clinical, I think, you know, the movie limitless is based around Modafinil and I'm not recommending anyone tried this because it may not be legal in the country that you're in.
But, uh, it's a pretty incredible drug as well. That has some pretty astounding effects on the way that neurons and synopsis fire.
Ben Harris: Well, yeah, I got to get on a plane and me, and you can just jam out and get some work done and, and see, you know, about this.
Jonathan Levi: That's the first time I actually experimented with Modafinil, I got on a plane and I took it and I was like, all right, I'm going to get so much focus. There's no wifi. I'm just going to like hammer out and write this course. And then I looked up and they were like, all right, we're going to be landing. I said, what the hell do you mean we're going to be landing written like 200 pages. I was like, Oh my God, it's been 11 hours.
Ben Harris: That is awesome.
Jonathan Levi: Yeah, let me ask you this about that Ben, what's a product or service that you simply could not live without?
Ben Harris: Google calendar. No, I'm just kidding. Um, actually maybe, you know, with having our team and everything, now that we store cloud-based from knowing whether it's a presentation we have to present on Google slides or Google docs, Google sheets, and Google calendar, you know, I know, or every member of our team is at every day. And so does my business partner and that allows us to, you know, knowing it's okay for interruption and knowing it's not, you know when I'm knocking out my kills for the day. I mean, and I mean, this leave me alone. You know what I mean? Like I have a prioritized list of stuff I have to do with about a two-hour, maybe three-hour tops, you know, blocked that is blocked off.
And I'll either go to, you know, I'll stay in our apartment, I'll go to a coffee shop. I'll be at a coworking space and I'm rocking out. I'm doing it. And I'm knocking out my list and I do not want to be ignored. So if it was not for those tools, to my knowledge, I don't know how anybody else would know that.
So I definitely think for our business, I don't know if we'd survive without Google calendar. Otherwise we just, you know, it'd be a giant cluster ball.
Jonathan Levi: Amazing. That's a good one. It's a good one. Cause it's like so obvious. And I think so many people-
Ben Harris: I don't know if you've gotten that answer before, but for us, it definitely works.
Jonathan Levi: Oh, I meet a lot of people who don't put things into their calendar. They just know, my girlfriend being one of them, and, uh
Ben Harris: Okay.
Jonathan Levi: Okay. Well, you know, everywhere you need to be, but I don't know everywhere you need to be. Yeah. And so I'm telling people that we're definitely available for dinner on Thursday and it's like, it's so much easier when I get like, so my assistant, my team, everyone knows exactly. As you said, they just like check my calendar and they know what I'm up to. It's not for the faint of heart when it comes to privacy. But let me tell you right saves a lot of hassle.
Ben Harris: Yeah, absolutely.
Jonathan Levi: So, Ben, let me ask you this one. Homework. I like to give people in the audience homework, and I have a feeling you'll have some good homework for them.
What's one kind of thing that they can do this week while they wait for next week's episode to perform at a higher level, or maybe learn something about themselves.
Ben Harris: That's a great question. Let's get some homework. So pretty much I challenged people to try and create habits. And I don't, you know, I'm sure you've got that answer.
And it was like, Oh, blah, blah, blah. But they've truly changed my life, you know, from a testimonial standpoint to really try and practice to one, improve yourself. You know, whether that's reading for an hour, a day, meditating every day, and meditation, I mean, when you get the app Headspace, it takes three minutes.
It is not long when you first start out and stuff to do that clears your mind. And that would challenge people to find their escape in a fun place to do this is from happy Gilmore when they talk about finding your happy place. And it's something that you can really do every time where something doesn't go the way you want to because you and I know, and everyone probably listening to that happens almost every day, more than one time.
But you have to have habits that you revert to, that, you know, calls you to not just lose your mind and whether that's meditating, whether it's escaping to read, you know, escaping to something that's productive. Me, I like to escape in the gym. You know, I put my phone on, do not disturb me. And, uh, the only, I just haven't to listen to music, but that's something that I just escaped to.
And that is my time where I'm not on my phone. I'm not on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, I'm not responding to text messages. You know, that's my 45 minutes to an hour or that's my escape and was really everything that doesn't go your way. You have to have that to bring you centered. So definitely cultivating a habit to find your escape.
Cause I'm telling you right now, if you don't have it, you know, you're going to lose it. Without a doubt.
Jonathan Levi: Definitely. So I know we're coming up on time here. Ben, I want to give you the opportunity to tell people just a little bit about how they can learn more. I know by the time this episode comes out, hopefully, your Indiegogo will be pretty much fully funded.
Where can people learn more? Where can they get in touch and how can they kind of get involved with what you guys are trying to do?
Ben Harris: Absolutely. So we have a website right now, nickelanddimesuppclub.com, S U P P club. And that is just a blog that we index that we update on a regular basis. So right now, pretty much when it's aired, if you guys want to go check out our blog, sign up for our email list, we do some great giveaways, by all means, can do so from our Indiegogo campaign, we have crowdfunded almost $5,000 in our first two days.
So we're hoping to really make some noise. We've got some really cool PR things lined up here. They're gonna become an Alison next week, but Nickel Dime SC is what we are in our social media, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram. And that's something that we're going to use as a platform to change this industry, Jonathan, you know, to have an education portal, that's going to be like never before to have people know exactly what they're taking into a house, something that's formulated around them.
You know, when you come to our website, which is not live now. Like I said, we have a WordPress blog, but we are in the process of building a full, full platform, a full website that is going to capture some information about you. You know, tell us a little bit about you. What do you like, what don't you like and what kind of routines do you like to do?
What are your goals and are really, who are you? And then who are you looking to be? Based on the information you give us what you're then going to recommend something that we feel is the best fit for you. If you'd like to go that route, if you want to go and purchase a BCAA one time and never buy from us again, by all means, you can do that.
What we want to do, and we're going to push people towards is saving time, saving money. And so you can just do the things you like to do, go to the gym, you know, and not everybody likes to go to work, but if you like to go to work, I want you to have the time for the world to do that, to catch up on things, to spend time with your friends, with your family, you know, that's what we're here to do.
We're not meant to sit there scrolling on Amazon through 600 BCAA supplements to find out which one's best. Tell me a little bit about you. And then I'll tell you what we think we should do.
Jonathan Levi: Amazing.
Ben Harris: So with getting in touch with us, you know, being on our website and, you know, following us to make sure that you're up to date on all, you know, all the progress that we do have.
Jonathan Levi: Amazing. Awesome. Ben. So I want to thank you very, very much for your time and for your wisdom, sharing your energy. But before I do that, I want to ask you, what is the number one biggest takeaway that you hope people remember from this episode?
Ben Harris: To definitely, you know, not be scared to risk at all. And when I mean risk at all, I literally do not mean everything, but to do something that makes you uncomfortable. And actually, now that I'm on this point, I don't mean it to go into a rant. Let's tack that onto the homework too. And I had a boss that at one time told me, you know, it takes 10 seconds of insane courage and to do something every day, that makes you a little uncomfortable because I have a mentor that always pushes me to do that.
And you will just be so surprised at what you were so scared of. And then you sit back and you're like that wasn't that hard at all. But that was, you know, whether it's talking to you and being on a podcast, you know, that's something that's intimidating, whether it's, you know, talking to anybody or reaching out to go do that.
That's something that wants to be done. No, you'll constantly surprise yourself. So one takeaway that I hope listeners take from this is to 1. Get organized. Absolutely, without a doubt, prioritize your list of tasks to know what you have to do and next time you find yourself reverting back, no, from completing something or from saying something or from doing something, just do it.
I promise you'll be surprised what happens. I promise.
Jonathan Levi: Amazing. Ben, I want to thank you again so much for your time and for your energy. I really had a blast chatting with you, and I wish you guys all the success in the world with what you're doing.
Ben Harris: Absolutely, yourself as well. It's been a pleasure to follow you and to have you as a mentor and a friend. So thank you very much for having me on your show.
Jonathan Levi: My pleasure, sir. So you take care.
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