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episode 55 | Jul 27, 2021
Personal Growth
Law Enforcement/Military

Ep. 55: Warrior Mindset With ERT/SWAT Team Leader (Ret.) Seb Lavoie

Driven, passionate, professional and insightful. Recently retired Emergency Response Team Leader Sgt. Major Seb Lavoie talks with Travis Bader about what it takes to live an extraordinary and meaningful life, and what it takes to be a leader.
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Transcript

Travis Bader: [00:00:00] I’m Travis Bader and this is The Silvercore Podcast. Join me as I discuss matters related to hunting, fishing, and outdoor pursuits with the people in businesses that comprise the community. If you’re a new to Silvercore, be sure to check out our website, www.Silvercore.ca where you can learn more about courses, services, and products that we offer as well as how you can join The Silvercore Club, which includes 10 million in north America wide liability insurance, to ensure you are properly covered during your outdoor adventures.

[00:00:45] Today, I’m joined by a modern day warrior, retired RCMP Sergeant Major  Seb Lavoie, who DM’d me that rather intriguing message. “I’m about to change the face of leadership and policing in the country. Do you want this scoop?” Seb, welcome to The Silvercore Podcast. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:01:01] Good morning. Thank you for having me. 

Travis Bader: [00:01:02] Good morning. Wow. So for the listeners, and you’ve been doing a few podcasts recently, I’ve been watching the progression over the last couple of years of the podcasts that you’ve been doing. You’ve got a very interesting background. You’ve probably told it a large number of times now, but would you like to give a quick thumbnail just so the listeners have an idea of who you are? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:01:28] Yeah, absolutely. So I’m, Seb Lavoie, I, um, retired recently retired from the RCMP after 20 years. I spent the majority of that in, um, tactical units, um, either in a covert capacity or on the Lower Mainland emergency response team, which is a full time, uh, tactical unit here in, in Canada, NBC, it’s now referred to as the integrated emergency response team.

[00:01:56] Cause there, there are a few municipal departments that are a part of it. And, um, I spent 13 years on the team, seven years as a team leader, um, 2019 moved on to become the divisional Sergeant Major for the province of British Columbia and retired two and a half years later. 

Travis Bader: [00:02:16] Wow. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:02:16] On top, on top of my, uh, as far as I was going to go. 

Travis Bader: [00:02:20] Wow. So very storied career. And you know, some people might look at this and say, man, this guy must have horse shoes. Look at this, he goes to Depot, and I think you were stationed in Tofino to begin with, beautiful place. Do you surf? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:02:38] I do not. 

Travis Bader: [00:02:38] Oh. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:02:40] Yeah. I do not. I had, uh, you know, I tried while I was there and, um, I had a near drowning experience and, and really, to be honest, we, we just didn’t have the time at the time, the numbers just weren’t conducive to us having the ability to kind of go out and really enjoy the outdoors. It took me years to go back there and really look at it and go, man, what have I done? 

Travis Bader: [00:03:02] Near drowning experience. Was that just swimming or out there. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:03:05] No. 

Travis Bader: [00:03:05] Surfing? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:03:06] Surfing. 

Travis Bader: [00:03:06] Really? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:03:06] Yeah. Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:03:07] Yeah. It, can. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:03:08] I get a few of those actually I have another one diving and one surfing. 

Travis Bader: [00:03:11] Really? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:03:11] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:03:12] I’ve had a couple a near drowning experiences. And it’s not quite what most people, it’s not how you would imagine a drowning experience. When you actually start to drown, it’s actually rather relaxing. It’s, there, there’s I don’t want to say panic about it. Maybe there is, um, uh, organized, um, energy to try and stay afloat and not go under. But once the oxygen starts to deplete and it feels like anyways, that you’re inhaling the water, um, things get a little bit calmer. I don’t know if you had the same experience.

Seb Lavoie: [00:03:48] I  wasn’t quite that close no. Thankfully. 

Travis Bader: [00:03:53] Thankfully. Well, I guess where I was going with that was, well, some people might say that you have horseshoes because you’re deployed in these great places and you’ve had some very story career in some very interesting, uh, deployments. I look at this as something that you’ve strove for, that you’ve worked very hard for.

[00:04:16] And while there may be an element of luck somewhere along the way. I that’s only because preparation and all the prior planning that you put together kind of fell into place. And now as a retired Sergeant Major, you have started a new company, Raven Strategic, can you tell me about this? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:04:38] Correct. Uh, this is, uh, evidently a work in progress now, but, um, what it is now in sort of the bulk of what I’m doing is, uh, leadership, sort of. There’s I have three modules, so three different modules. So one of them is a leadership introspection, and this is a very, very recent here. 

Travis Bader: [00:04:56] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:04:56] One of them is essentially a leadership introspection where we go in, whether it’s a, uh, in a police environment or in a corporate environment, and essentially use, uh, my experience in, in dealing with critical incidents where consequences are dire as in the, how the, you know, the leadership is held to the fire so to speak all along the way, as they are developing to go and assist other leaders in looking inwards in, in, instead of, when assessing their own leadership, instead of looking out and deflecting and disabling and having an ego. 

[00:05:32] So what we’re doing is basically what can you do today to make your leadership better without, without waiting for anybody to inject on in your world and, and provide you with some tools. Right. 

Travis Bader: [00:05:43] Very cool. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:05:44] Yeah. And so that’s one part, I also very, very, uh, sort of passionate about anything that has to do with combatives and, um, uh, you know, uh, combative tactics for those that don’t know, obviously a police defensive tactics or, or, or martial arts, so to speak, but in the context specifically of whatever, um, business or police force or unit we’re I’m dealing with. So that’s one of the parts that I simply kept because I just love doing it. 

Travis Bader: [00:06:16] Well, you’ve been doing that since what, three years old. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:06:18] Yeah. Yeah. It’s been a long, long time. Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:06:21] Three years old. And you got into, and you started martial arts or was it JiuJitsu immediately at three? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:06:25] No, I started, I started martial arts when I was three and I was traditional martial arts, you know, and for everybody’s pleasure, it was Kung Fu.

Travis Bader: [00:06:33] Right.

Seb Lavoie: [00:06:33] Right, so. 

Travis Bader: [00:06:35] Hey, there you go. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:06:36] Yeah, no, absolutely. It was, it was a step in and, and, um, you know, it taught me a bunch of valuable lessons that I carried over with me all along the, along the journey. And eventually sort of went into more of the Muay Thai stand up striking and eventually ended up in JiuJitsu, which was about 2007. 

Travis Bader: [00:06:56] Okay. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:06:56] So in 2007 uh, Brazilian JiuJitsu became my primary focus. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:02] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:04] Um. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:05] Why was that? Was that because of Royce Gracie and all the, uh.

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:08] A hundred percent it was, yeah. I mean, in 93, evidently when UFC started, we actually got to see what truly worked and what didn’t, and it was no longer a theoretical, uh, before that there was a ton of theoretical ax to grind about every single, you know, style and who, who was going to beat who and everything was just essentially opinions. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:31] Right. That was when, uh, Akido ring king. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:33] Sure. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:33] Because Steven Segal was on the big screen. Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:35] And to be honest, he was pretty awesome. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:37] Yeah. I can’t deny. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:39] He’s a weirdo, but. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:41] He is definitely an interesting individual, but I can’t deny, I probably watched every one of his videos up until a certain point. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:47] 900 times.

Travis Bader: [00:07:50] Rewind, pause. How did he do that move? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:53] Yeah, I was a big Seagal fan myself as well. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:56] Yeah. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:56] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:07:57] Favorite movie? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:07:58] I would say probably above the law. 

Travis Bader: [00:08:01] Yeah? That was his first one wasn’t it? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:08:03] Yes, it was. Yeah. And then I really liked, um, what’s the one with the twins again? Jamaican twins. 

Travis Bader: [00:08:12] On deadly ground. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:08:12] On dead-, no, no, no. 

Travis Bader: [00:08:15] Oh no, hard to kill. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:08:15] Hard to kill. 

Travis Bader: [00:08:16] That’s right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:08:16] Yeah. So good. 

Travis Bader: [00:08:18] Everybody want go heaven. Nobody want dead. That one? So good. Anyways, we digressed a little bit. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:08:24] I like you already. 

Travis Bader: [00:08:27] Um, yeah. Um, yeah. So with the martial arts background, I had had a little bit of martial arts as well. Did kilkushen karate as a kid and I hated it. I’ve talked to other people who got into that and they absolutely loved it. Maybe it was my mindset. Maybe it was the group I was with, but I wanted nothing to do with. 

[00:08:49] Uh, later on, I got into, uh, Arnis and, uh, JiuJitsu and I did some Akido and because of the Steven Seagal stuff and, uh, the Muay Thai, and I found a great deal of value to the standup work and the physical conditioning, the cardio work and all the rest for the movie to I, and I, I really enjoyed the Arnis actually. It was, um, uh, is something I did for, for quite some time. 

[00:09:15] But there were lessons that people can learn in martial arts that are very applicable to policing and applicable to business. Is that where you’re drawing some of your, uh, your leadership training or are you primarily leaning on what you learned through, uh, your career with the RCMP?

Seb Lavoie: [00:09:35] Yeah. Well, my leadership journey started long before that there was, there was a stint in the military and then it rolled right into, you know, being at the academy where I was in charge of my troop and it rolled into leading use of force programs, you know, for the west coast. And then it just, so there was, there was a long kind of tracking history there, but you are absolutely correct when you were saying that, uh, martial arts have the, the, the crossover so to speak is, um, are undeniable, right.

[00:10:05] And, and, um, but in, in terms of the environment or setting up an environment like that is critical for, for any gym or martial arts studio, and we see it over and over again, how this is being failed and, and, and the people that are going in to attempt a martial arts or to, you know, to, to, to do with everybody else is doing that’s seems to be so great and then they have a bad experience or a negative experience. And next thing you know, it turns them off forever martial arts, right? So. 

Travis Bader: [00:10:35] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:10:35] As studio, as martial arts studio owners, which I’m one of them, um, we have a great responsibility in, in, in representing the martial arts world and whatever style that we are teaching, um, and beauty ambassador, and know that if somebody comes to you and they’re treating you in a, in a, they’re received in a welcomed, in a family environment with the respect and all these other things, along with the professional, um, instructions, eventually, if they move on, they go somewhere else, they carry that along with them. Versus this is a wrap. Um, you know, I’ve tried it then, like it done. 

Travis Bader: [00:11:12] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:11:13] One and Done. 

Travis Bader: [00:11:13] You talk about respect. And some of these things are just fundamental core values that a person’s mother should have taught them as a youngster, but perhaps not everybody has that. The, that is one of the places where martial arts can really help leaders I’ve found is in instilling a, a code of ethics and some fundamental values that are shared amongst the community. Uh, the physical conditioning is a big part of that for the, the mental resiliency, as well as your physical resiliency, um.

[00:11:52] Your studio. Tell me a little bit about that, where, I didn’t realize, I know you had a gym for about eight years, wasn’t it? You still have that? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:12:00] Two. Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:12:01] Two gyms?! 

Seb Lavoie: [00:12:02] Two. Yeah. I had two CrossFit gyms, a Sheep Dog CrossFit and Dogs Den CrossFit, both, both of which I’m no longer owner, uh, owner of, of, but I still coach at Sheep Dog on the Sundays, it’s in Port Coquitlam. My, my martial arts studio is called Ascension Martial Arts and it’s also in Port Coquitlam. And, um, I was going somewhere with that, um, in line with what you were saying there, what was it now? 

Travis Bader: [00:12:32] Mental resiliency. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:12:33] Yeah, the resiliency piece. Thank you. Uh, yeah, the resiliency piece. I mean, highly underrated. Like we know that adversity adds to the resiliency bank, like adversity in a controlled fashion either creates post-traumatic growth or it creates post-traumatic stress injury or, or occupational stress injuries in the case of a professional setting. And so what we have is safety. So no real risk for harm aside from you know, the odd, very rare injury that, that, that can happen anywhere in soccer or baseball or whatever.

[00:13:07] But what you have is adversity. You spar, you know, especially in Brazilian JiuJitsu, you, you, you get the sparring in and, and when you start as a white belt, you know, you’re pretty much everybody’s punching bag and it is safe. It is safe, but you are not winning. Right. And so it’s difficult, especially if you’re somebody that’s generally very successful and you’re generally very successful quickly at things that you do.

[00:13:32] Or you’ve been in the same field for many, many years, you’re a subject matter expert. And now you get to test something that’s completely out of comfort. And next thing you know, you’re not winning, not winning, not winning as you’re progressing. And then you start getting little wins here and there and you, you know, it’s, it’s really, um, humbling and that’s a critical, that’s a critical piece.

[00:13:52] Um, it’s really humbling, but it also shows you that when you’re having a really bad day on the mats, maybe two hours later, you’re back and it’s a greatest day and it’s weird. Cause they’re the same day. 

Travis Bader: [00:14:03] Yes. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:14:04] Right. 

Travis Bader: [00:14:04] W what did it was, think it was E.H. Chapin.  He said out of suffering have emerged as strongest souls than those massive characters are seared of scars. And perhaps, perhaps that can be a very accurate statement. And sometimes some people just don’t get up from, from the scars and they have a difficult time rebounding. Having those small wins, having that little light at the end of the tunnel, that’s probably why people golf actually, right? Same sort of thing.

[00:14:32] You get that one good shot. And then you suffer for the next, for the rest of the course, whacking the ball everywhere. But you need those little success of wins in order to build that, that mental resiliency. And now you built, if I’m not mistaken, um, the sort of standing on the shoulders of giants and using cumulative work that’s out there, but you built a mental resiliency program yourself, didn’t you?

Seb Lavoie: [00:14:58] That is correct. Yeah. It’s called a Leadership Through Critical Circumstances. And, um, you know, it, it, um, evolved greatly over the years, but essentially what it was to begin with was, um, a program to re uh, to support our memberships and to support our police officers going through critical incidents, whether it was shootings or, you know, use of force, major use of force, or even some of the things that are a by-product of life as it could be, you know?

[00:15:27] Cause the way I like to sort of the analogy I make is imagine having a bucket and every single drop that you put in there, whether it’s administrative stress or marital problems or problems with, with the kids or financial problems. And then you get to the office and there’s a caustic work environment or a caustic culture. You have this, you have that. And it keeps on going until it, until it’s full. And now you have any sort of incident, especially in a critical incident realm and boom you’re overflowing right? 

Travis Bader: [00:15:58] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:15:58] So our job was to essentially poke holes through that buckets in any means necessary, poke the holes so that the water would flow out and the water level would stay low so that we could send our people out to do the tough work did they have to do, and then bringing them back, because guess what? 

[00:16:19] Next week, in two weeks, in three weeks there’s this other call and this other call, and we’re talking about a team that’s full time that has hundreds and hundreds of operation a year. So our guys are not going anywhere. Right. So it’s it, so that’s essentially how this starts. 

Travis Bader: [00:16:34] So I’ve heard, and can correct me if, uh, if you’ve heard otherwise, but I’ve heard that let’s say the stress of getting married, the stress of, what would otherwise be viewed as a positive stress. Will have a very similar physiological response on the body. So whether somebody is looking at an individual who’s constantly dealing with negative stresses or negative stresses, which everybody’s going to have to one degree or another, uh, combined with the positive stresses, all of that needs to be, to be emptied from the bucket, so to speak. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:17:07] Stress, the body really doesn’t make a big difference. And I can even add to that and say somebody that trains really, really hard on the physical realm adds to the stress as well. 

Travis Bader: [00:17:17] Interesting. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:17:18] And it is interesting because it’s also an outlet. 

Travis Bader: [00:17:20] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:17:20] Right? So which one of the greater goods, which one is it for you and how are you perceiving it? So for example, if we’re going back, just to kind of unpack that a little bit, if we’re talking about say, and I’m not a psychologist, so bear with me here, but you know, as part of my research, I’ve, I’ve, I’ve, um, linked up with, uh, the Chicago police department, psychological unit, and some of the work they had done and, uh, and much, much smarter people than me along the way as part of the research project.

[00:17:46] So, um, but yeah, when we’re looking at, uh, stress, even positive stress, or if it’s even a thing. It’s stress and the reason why you’re considering it positive is because there was a marriage in the end. 

Travis Bader: [00:17:58] Right.

Seb Lavoie: [00:17:58] You know, and, and, and that’s the, the outcome. So now we’re, we’re outcome focused. So there’s a little bit of outcome bias, but the stress that leads into the marriage, isn’t positive. 

Travis Bader: [00:18:09] Right?

Seb Lavoie: [00:18:10] It’s a positive event, but there’s distress is still distress is still, it takes a toll on you right? 

Travis Bader: [00:18:15] Interesting.  

Seb Lavoie: [00:18:15] So it’s a bit of a, it’s a bit of semantics, I guess. But ultimately the only reason why there’s stress is it’d be the same as saying, you know, we’re going to get, you’re going to get into a fight and, um, it will go, all you need to know is that it will go your way and when you finish, you win. So, so, so the stress of the encounter, is that positive because you’re winning, you know? 

Travis Bader: [00:18:38] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:18:38] So it’s a, it’s a little bit, uh, it’s a little bit of, um, it’s, uh, it’s, it’s a bit of a twisted thought process, right? Like. 

Travis Bader: [00:18:45] It kinda is. And the stress of a fight, I’ve always. Is typically the anticipation or I should say probably always the anticipation of the fight. The fight itself is another, a stressful thing. It’s, you’re in it, you’re in it. And you act and you react and you work in a way that you’ve either been trained or it’s something that comes instinctually. But the anticipation of that event is a very stressful thing for a lot of people. And then the aftermath of that and how you mentally frame that event, was that a positive event?

[00:19:19] Is it socially acceptable? Is it accepted by my supervisors? By my, my crew around me? Or am I now looked at as a black sheep? And I’ve seen from the limited research that I’ve done, when we talk about critical incident stress, and you talk about, um, PTSD and these different things, it’s that mental mind frame that I’ve seen people be able to walk away from exact same incidents with very different outcomes.

Seb Lavoie: [00:19:48] Yeah. Yeah. And I would say, I would say, um, you know, in support of that and what compounds their ability to do that is also what was their resilience bank at the time of the incident and what kind of adversity have they gone through, through life before getting there. So, cause that also will dictate how one person will react and how the other person will react. So those are compounding compounding things.

Travis Bader: [00:20:12] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:20:12] You have mindset, my mindset, mind frame, understanding their purpose and you know, all the other factors that play into how they’re going to react to the event and how positive it is, but also what was the ability to sustain this level of stress to begin with. Right? So, so the two kind of mesh together. So it’s a very interesting, uh. 

Travis Bader: [00:20:30] Yeah, that, that is interesting. Cause when you bring up, what is the individual been through ahead of time? Now, some people can go through something, they can get beaten down, they can get that little bit of a win. They can reframe that situation in their mind and then they can start building the resiliencies.

[00:20:46] Other people will get beaten down, beaten down, beaten down, and they never can get that mindset right. And consequently, two people can have the same adversity coming up to a certain point. And have two different mental resiliencies. How would, how would you coach your team? How would you suggest to others to really enhance their, their mental resiliency?

Seb Lavoie: [00:21:08] Well, I’ll just speak to my, I’ll speak to my guys. For example, like we use a lot of positive reframing, right? Because one of the issues that, that we know is that humans are negatively biased. Right. And we are, and the reason why we are is because evidently we are coming out of a cave and we’re not looking left and right. And we’re getting eaten right as,  as you know, in the old days, so to speak. 

[00:21:29] Um, and, um, and, and it’s easy. And if you look, um, just to make a little segue, if you look at a, say in an MMA world champ, for example, like an absolute superstar, or even a boxer or anybody that really excels in their field, their ability to shut down the voices is slim to none, right?

[00:21:47] So, so it’s really hard to emulate because what they get the same, they get the same, you know, where you’re, you’re an imposter, you know, you eventually you’ll be, you’ll be exposed and people are going to know who, you know, that you’re not as good as they think you are and all these other things. But they really, really will quiet those voices down when other people just don’t have that ability.

[00:22:05] And the voices will become louder and louder and louder and louder until it actually mute their own right. So one of the things that I like to do, that’s actually quite, quite easy. And I’ve spoken to this with a bunch of different podcasts, but it’s basically, um, have them listening to positive messaging, but that those positive messages, they have to have an impact emotionally.

[00:22:28] They can’t just be like, okay, you are going to, um, process information with your cerebral, with your head. It’s more about, can you feel this message? Right? So when the context of my guys, for example, I used video videos that were say set in a tactical context, right? Or in a military style context or in a police, you know, special operation type context, but a key messaging was done by motivational speaker, right. 

[00:22:56] So they would, essentially at the beginning of each block, I would play, you know, a four or five, six minute video. And my goal was not to change their life by playing this one video. My goal was for them to understand how we can positively impact their day and their shifts so that they get to do it on their own at home.

[00:23:15] So for me, when I’m cleaning the house, when I’m doing things chores around the house or whatever, I’m not listening to music, I’m listening to motivational video set in a context that’s conducive to me having an emotional reaction. And I just blast them right. 

Travis Bader: [00:23:30] Very interesting. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:23:30] And so what you do in what you find quickly is that I’m sleeping in bed at night and I will wake up reciting certain things. You know, luck is the last thing, we should also believe that winning can happen by accident and all these things. And, and your brain continues to process the information. And what I also tell them to do is to do it in the morning, because in the morning when you wake up, what happens, you listen to a song, you have it in your head all day.

[00:23:56] Well, now’s the time to, front-load your, you know, your, your frontal cortex and your emotional side and your subconscious mind, uh, with positive messaging. And, and, and it’s crazy how effectively it works. Now, the problem is because humans are inherently negatively bias. We tend to go back there. So, so what happens is oftentimes people will do it for a while and to be like, oh, I felt really great, I felt like I was, you know, able to do things that normally would have been more apprehensive about, or I was able to publish public speak, or I was able to present or do this, or lead a call or whatever the case may be.

Travis Bader: [00:24:32] Right.

Seb Lavoie: [00:24:33] And then they’re like, oh, well that worked, you know, it’s over. No, it’s not. Because over time, what happened is the voices will become louder and louder and louder. So what I do is every time I have downtime, I just front load, you know, jam pack my brain and my, my subconscious mind with these key messaging. And it never goes back there if it makes any sense. 

Travis Bader: [00:24:55] Oh, it totally makes sense. Yeah, no, you brought up a ton of things in that little short span. I wrote a couple of things down. So my ADHD mind doesn’t run off in different directions. Um, you know, one of the things, when you’re talking about that, the, the motivational, the positive imagery, the positive messaging, one of the biggest things I’ve heard people say is, oh, it’s a, it’s a short term thing.

[00:25:17] It wears off and you know what so’s washing. So showering. Why not do that every day? Right? I mean, it’s a routine that you have to get into. And if you’re not always doing it, like what you say and keeping on top of it, then you will have diminishing returns. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:25:33] And that’s the disabler, right. And a disabler in all of us, I’m going to disable my own wellness. I’m going to disable my own ability to be better. I’m going to disabled. Uh, no, it’s, you know, empower ourselves to do it. So yeah, understand that if you stop doing it, it will stop working. But what else do you have to do? 

[00:25:52] You don’t have to listen to Metallica, well you do, but you know, at some point you can, you can switch it up and have an have, um, you know, a motivational video go out and really reinforces that key positive messaging.

[00:26:06] What’s interesting with that too, is just like martial arts and just how difficult it is to get certain people to train despite the data that shows that it’s absolutely necessary for their own either professional endeavour or whatever the case may be. It is equally as hard to get somebody to listen to a four minute video after I’ve had this conversation with so many people, because they just don’t want to even see if it could possibly be right. That’s how deep the disabler runs. Right. 

Travis Bader: [00:26:37] Why do you think that is? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:26:38] It is, it is completely asinine. 

Travis Bader: [00:26:41] Yeah. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:26:41] We, we, as humans have, I believe more propensity to self-sabotage than any other species, because we have the ability to process so much cognitive information. Like how do we actually, self-sabotage to the point of, if I said to you, give me three minutes of your time and I will prove to you that what I’m saying is real.

[00:27:01] What if I said to a police officer come to the mats and I will teach you that your level of competence is currently sits at the unknown incompetence, which means that you don’t know what you don’t know. And in three and a half minutes, I’m going to show you that your life is in danger if you don’t do something about your, the ability that you have to use of force in a controlled fashion, right?

Travis Bader: [00:27:22] Oh I’d jump on that. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:27:23] Yeah, but that’s not the case. 

Travis Bader: [00:27:25] But most people don’t. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:27:25] That’s not the case. 

Travis Bader: [00:27:26] Right. Well, most people don’t want to have their inadequacies pointed out. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:27:29] A hundred percent. And so the, the, the, one of the, the course that I have, the, the, the introspective leader courses exactly about that, this is a transformational day for your leadership. We are going to look long and hard inside. There is nobody else responsible. There’s nobody else to look out for, for rescue. It’s all about going down and deep. 

Travis Bader: [00:27:52] Very cool. Very cool. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:27:53] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:27:54] So you mentioned something and I did a bit of research going into this as well uh, but you mentioned the word imposter. And in my research, I was listening to our local police chief here in Delta. You had a chat with him. And one of the things that you brought up was you actually were promoted to a leadership position and then promoted from there to an even higher leadership position. I think you had, what’s it like not direct control, but about 500 people that were under. Is that a correct number? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:28:27] No. So I, I essentially went from having 24 people reporting to me to overseeing, being broadly responsible for 8,200 employees in a division. Right. Now, you’re absolutely right. There’s a span of control. We know what the span of control is right, about five people. So you have to have your leaders underneath, and that’s how these centralized command works.

[00:28:48] But in, in terms of that the image. And in terms of the, my ability to reach and connect, I had to be able to do that with basically 8,200 people. That was my job to be, um, an inspirational leader, so to speak. Um, and I mean, if this wasn’t a task that was handed out to me. 

Travis Bader: [00:29:09] No you took it upon yourself. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:29:09] This was,  this was an opportunity to do it right. I, you know, I could have, I could have cruised through the position for two years, but. 

Travis Bader: [00:29:16] But I think you mentioned in that interview that you felt like an imposter when you were first put into that. Can you speak about that? Because I don’t think it’s an uncommon thing for most people when they’re trying something new. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:29:26] A hundred percent. 

Travis Bader: [00:29:27] To say, like who am I? Who am I to be able to do this opposed to somebody else who might have greater accolades? 

Seb Lavoie: [00:29:34] Sure. Well, you know, to begin with understanding that, um, uh, tactical team leaders, such as me is held to the fire every single day. So we bring our accountability with us everywhere we go. We don’t need other people to, to, you know, to make us accountable for our actions.

[00:29:52] So for me, being in the unconscious incompetence is, is a very, very rare thing. I generally always know that I don’t know anything about something. I just don’t know specifically what those things are. 

Travis Bader: [00:30:04] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:30:04] But I will know who to speak to. So as I like to tell my guys, know what you don’t know and know who knows what you don’t know, or at the very least, you know who you could speak to the find out what you don’t know. So for me, when I moved on to an administrative position, so to speak, um, from being a tactical team leader, which was also an administrative position, that’s called a spade a spade for the last two years of my career. I was in the command post and doing mostly, um, enabling of my guys doing the work on the ground, which they did fantastic work.

[00:30:35] But, um, but when I moved to a, a truly administrative position at 30,000 foot, you know, I was now dealing with the assistant commissioner, the deputy commissioner and the commanding officer of the division, which was very different from, and all of us. So dealing with Ottawa and the commissioner of the RCMP and having face-to-face meetings and doing presentations and these types of things, it was such a broad and it was such, you know, it, it, it was so vast different from what I was used to uncomfortable with that the first time they put the ranks on my shoulders, I was like, you don’t know anything, you don’t own the job.

[00:31:13] You don’t own this job yet. You’re not ready for this rank, but now you have it. Right. So there was a temporary, there was a, there was a period there where definitely I felt, you have the ranks on your shoulders, but, um, you, you don’t know where you you’re doing. So for me, the, the, the sort of the defense mechanism and what that led me to want to do is you are going to earn this rank.

[00:31:37] And you’re going to start right now because having a rank on your shoulder, um, is, is a privilege. It’s a privilege. You now have, uh, the ability to affect the collective positively and negatively and. If, if you’re, if you’re not prepared for the responsibility that comes along with that, and you’re in for yourself, the collective is taking a back seat, everybody’s paying for that shortcoming.

[00:32:03] And, um, and, and, and so yeah, what it did for me is just, it was extra motivation. The bridge was cut behind me, so to speak, right. I just, I just had to go all out and try to make the best out of the experience that I had to cross it over to where I was going. And it took no time to figure out how that was going to work.

Travis Bader: [00:32:22] So some people will say fake it till you make it when you’re in there, pretend like you have it, but you took a different approach and you said, okay, I’ve got the stripes on my shoulder now and I’m going to really earn them. I’m really going to own it and make it my own. And for better or worse, as I look back, I can’t say it was for lack of trying. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:32:44] No question.

Travis Bader: [00:32:44] That’s a good way to do it. 

[00:32:45] Seb Lavoie: [00:32:45] Unquestionably, controlling, you know, what was within my sphere of influence. And, um, and, and really, I believe all I could ask myself was work as hard as I possibly could. 

Travis Bader: [00:32:57] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:32:58] And I would never look back and say, you, you missed an opportunity to really give it your all and you failed miserably. It might’ve been, you failed miserably, but you tried everything you possibly could so. 

Travis Bader: [00:33:09] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:33:10] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [00:33:11] Well as I think back. So my father was Vancouver police. My grandfather, never met him, he was Vancouver police as well. Actually, he’s one of the ones that this company is named after he was Silver Armeneau VPD detective, uh, Cornelius Bader, my other grandfather was an entrepreneur. I took the silver, I took the core, put ’em together.

Seb Lavoie: [00:33:31] Beautiful name. 

Travis Bader: [00:33:32] Um, but my father, he was VPD and he was on the very ERT and then he was in charge of it for, for some time. And, uh, consequently, we would have most of the team over in the house and I got to see the different people involved in over the period period of time.

[00:33:53] See how the stresses of work can start effecting people. And one, he’s passed away about a year ago, but, um,  got into the bottle pretty heavy. Another fellow, um, resigned, took himself off the team, took himself out of policing altogether, moved up north a bit and ended up taking his own life. Um, everybody kind of deals with things differently and I’d look at how my father would deal with things and how anger would come out in certain ways when in hindsight, looking back what I would view as normal behavior, it was, it was very, very different. 

[00:34:30] Um, I think in the very early, the days of the ERT there, um, the mental conditioning aspect of it was confined to, uh, the warrior mindset, as opposed to the mental resiliency. When did that whole resiliency piece start to really take hold that, that you could see?

Seb Lavoie: [00:34:55] The real question is when did we lose it? You know, well you’re looking at warrior culture and not to compare, say ERT with the samurais, but we’ll use the samurais for example. Right? Sure. A lot of the, a lot of the pillars of resiliency were already within their mindset. You know, they had a sense of higher purpose. There was a social aspect to it, there was the physical aspect to it. There was a spiritual aspect to it and the emotional side. And they were, you know, they brought all those things together as well. Those are the pillars of resiliency. Right. 

Travis Bader: [00:35:26] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:35:26] And so what ended up happening, I think over, over the course of whatever centuries, millenniums, whatever the case may be. Um, we we’ve lost the bigger picture and it became a sort of, uh, it sort of became a one dimensional approach to problem solving. Right. 

[00:35:44] And, uh, when I, when I think of my beginnings on the team, so now it would have been in 2007 or whatever, at the time the old school, you know, ERT guys were still. I have a, they had a death grip on the team in terms of case, some of them were still in P in position of leadership. Uh, definitely, uh, one of the, one of them was at the helm of the team at the time.

[00:36:09] And, um, I remember vividly, you know, going to a hostage rescue and actually, you know, conducting it with, with, with two or three of the other guys. And, uh, and when one of the, uh, supervisor asked, they, should we give the guys some recognition for this or whatever. It was like, wow, that’s their job, right? That was kind of the mentality. 

[00:36:28] But I think reinforcing that purpose and Hey guys, this was a, you know, a really tough call that we sent you to, uh, you did a fantastic job and here’s some recognition. So now there’s a positive attachment with this, and your sense of purpose has increased and all these other things. So they all feed into each other right. And, uh, there was always on the ERT side, just like there is on the military side, um, a strong importance given to sort of being tough and, uh, being tough as much more to skin deep. 

Travis Bader: [00:37:00] Hugely. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:37:01] Being, being tough is sometimes having the ability to say, this is too much for me, or how do I get better at this? Or what can I do better here and show some vulnerable, vulnerable vulnerability. mixing up two languages, two of which I don’t speak officially, but, um. But you know, and so my thing has always been focused on what you can do to be better all around. And you’ll never have to project an image of toughness. You will just beat off. And generally people don’t try to overcompensate as they have something. 

Travis Bader: [00:37:38] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:37:38] Which ties right into why police officers should be good at controlling suspects on the ground or, or even, you know, uh, being able to sustain an assault standing up and be able to, to, to react appropriately, do all those things and have a certain level of stress resistance to some of those events so that they never feel the need to overcompensate for the things that they’re insecure in, if that makes any sense. So. 

Travis Bader: [00:38:04] It makes a lot of sense. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:38:05] So for me, sorry, I went on a bit of a segue here, but, but for me, um, it’s a very different game now. I think over the course of the last, I would say probably I’d say five to 10 years and, uh, as more of this newer generation is starting coming through and there’s a recognition organizationally, not just from the RCMP, but from a variety of different organizations are important than the, you know, the, the importance of mental wellness and emotional wellness.

[00:38:32] And, um, and it’s bleeding, it’s bleeding into everything and it should. And so I think that now we’re doing a much, much better and it’s not perfect. It’s not perfect, but we’re doing especially an M speaking about the team here. 

Travis Bader: [00:38:46] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:38:47] Not, not necessarily you know, painting with a, with a broad brush here, just to team. And, uh, yeah, I mean, I, you know, I think there is no going backwards now ever because we’ve had, we’ve had plenty of our guys go with to some incredible things that you would have thought years ago would have definitely, definitely benched a bunch of guys for a long, long time. And the prospect of speaking, you know, I’m, I’m thinking about a gentlemen, you mentioned that took his own life. The prospect of speaking about those things back in the day would have been, you know. 

Travis Bader: [00:39:22] Oh. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:39:22] A sacrilege, right? Like.

Travis Bader: [00:39:23] It was looked down upon. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:39:24] What are you doing? Just drink another drink, you know, like. 

Travis Bader: [00:39:28] Right. Well, like I say, one of them, I, I, you know what, I won’t, I won’t say the name. I won’t say the nickname, but very heavy into the drink, but this fellow, he said, um, I remember he was at the, uh, the kitchen table talking about how he would start shivering and convulsing violently as he started to drive over the bridge and he’d break down into tears and he didn’t know why.

[00:39:51] And this was as he’s driving over the bridge to go into work and the incident that he was involved with, wasn’t even one that I think people would look at it and say, well, are you kidding me? Is that it? But the fact that the balance of life and death did stand, was held within his hands and the fact that he didn’t react in a way that he thought he would react or that he figured he should have reacted. Uh, really didn’t sit well with him. 

[00:40:18] And on top of that, I didn’t get the sense that there’s a heck of a lot of support from management in the, in the whole process. And I, I remember him telling the story and I remember him going through it and looking at it. And the, I was very young at the time and thinking, well, that’s not, it, that’s not what a tough person does right. 

[00:40:42] And cause that was, that was how I was raised. And that’s how everybody kinda kinda thought maybe he doesn’t belong on the team. When in fact the guy was a perfect fit for the team. Had he had these mental resiliencies in place and had a support network for being able to reframe that incident in a way that was positive. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:41:01] Yeah. As I, um, as I completed a research project, when I first moved to the commanding officer’s office, um, I asked for permission to go around and interview people that were involved in critical use of force and half the conversations about what was done with them, following the incident. I mean, pre post and pre, during and post incidents, you know, just to see where the balls were dropped so that we could obviously pick up some slack and tighten up some things.

[00:41:27] And I was absolutely amazed the mud, the vast majority of our members weren’t actually. Um, adversely afflicted by whatever incident they actually responded to. It was the way they were treated did after. So when people come into policing and come into these first responder job, they have an expectations of some of the things they’re going to see.

[00:41:49] Therefore there’s a pre-loading of the information and weary, and the punch you expect is better than the punch you don’t expect. Right? So then they would go to work on the daily with an acceptance, and that this may be the case today. I prepare for this, I have this training and that training and, and, and so, but what they didn’t prepare for is to get abandoned along the way.

[00:42:10] And unfortunately, it’s not always, it doesn’t, it’s not always an organizational thing where everybody dropped the ball, but sometimes it’s just that one person, right. It’s that one person that didn’t quite get it right. And was going through a clinical process at the time at which the person that was actually a part of the incident is hypersensitive following an incident.

[00:42:33] And they should be, you know, cause it’s abnormal. Like we’re sending our people to abnormal situations. And then, and then, and then, you know, uh, something was said, or something was done or an attitude was taken and, and, and, and the person felt completely, um, betrayal, betrayal, like a, a strong sense of betrayal of being betrayed by the organization.

[00:42:54] Uh, and then, you know, it’s interesting too, because, and I tell this to member members all the time, it’s like the force treated me like crap. Well, we’ve had this conversation for say, uh, two hours. And, and you’ve mentioned this person 900 times, right? Is this person representing the force? To a certain extent they do, but they are not the force.

[00:43:18] They are not the organization. There’ll be one person that was your disabler. And he really caused some severe damage, right. So with the idea, yeah, it’s just, it’s tough, right? Because if you have a line of say 10 people that have the ability to impact somebody’s career or their lives and the lives of their family, all it takes is one, it just takes one. 

Travis Bader: [00:43:43] Totally.

Seb Lavoie: [00:43:43] So they have to be in unison, they have to be in sync. They have to be squared away of the processes. They have to be, they have to be prioritizing wellness over, over anything else in recovery, over anything else. And they all have to be on the same page. And if they don’t, somebody will pay. 

Travis Bader: [00:43:59] A lot of the retired police officers that, uh, not at all, but I see a lot of them that I’ve dealt with will have a resentment or a, an antiestablishment attitude after getting out of policing as they look back because of those one or two people that, that’s a very good analogy that you put forward. The issue that you also brought up was having the, um, the confidence of being able to deal with people in the street in a way where you now no longer have to overuse force or over exert your role.

[00:44:39] And I quite often hear the same thing come up. Well, how come we’re hiring these people who’ve never been in a fight before? How come we’re, uh, prioritizing university education over top of perhaps some street smarts. And I, and I see the argument on both sides. I see the fact that some compassion and a different approach can quite often have a much better outcome than perhaps going in with a heavy hand.

[00:45:03] And I also see the side when the heavy hand needs to be applied. Um, but that process of hiring, and I know you’ve heard it before and then people will get into positions of leadership and leadership will start to promote other people with similar experiences, life values, interests that they have and you start getting a top heavy establishment with certain ethos and outlooks.

[00:45:32] And if you get that one or two negative individuals in there it can start to sour an organization rather quickly. And I think that’s where some of this media reporting has been, uh, at one point the RCMP. I mean, you, you couldn’t paint it black mark on them. And for a long time now, I, all you hear about in the news is just really, really negative things. 

[00:45:58] And when we first started talking here, you brought up, uh, uh, a recent one. I, you did a post on Instagram as well, did you want to talk about, I think I brought up a couple things here, but why don’t you just step off on whichever one you’d like to. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:46:13] Okay. If I, if I get lost, he’ll have to bring me back on track here, but I’ll start with one thing to begin with, we know that group problem solving and effective problem solving is better when you have diversity of thoughts. Right? So if you surround yourself with like-minded individual, it looks like we’re doing the right thing, but it’s not always the case. Now don’t get me wrong. Evidently you could say, well, if you’re on an ERT team, the majority of the guys are like-minded individuals. They’re hard driven, go getters that want to go out and do things and they want to step up.

[00:46:42] But amongst those personalities, there’s a wide spectrum of different variety. Right? And it’s, and so you can have, um, S some, um, similarities, but having diversity of thoughts, especially is critical for effective group problem-solving. And there was a spring, uh, I believe a Stanford university or one of the university in the states, I can never remember which one. 

[00:47:05] Um, had done basically a, an exercise where they had a strong baseline with a collective IQ, much higher than another group that had diversity of thoughts, you know, by, by way of backgrounds and ethnicities and all these other things. 

Travis Bader: [00:47:20] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:47:21] And what they end up doing is they end up being able to figure, being able to come up to the conclusion that the group that had a lower combined IQ was still better at effectively problem solve the. 

Travis Bader: [00:47:32] Interesting. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:47:33] Dilemmas that they were given because there was, oh, you know, I’ve dealt with this in my job and I’ve, I’ve got this at an experience. And, you know, versus we’re all thinking the same cause if you’re, if you’re group problem solving with people that are all like you, you’re essentially alone. 

Travis Bader: [00:47:48] You’re in an echo chamber. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:47:48] Problem solving. Yeah, you are. And so that’s a very interesting dichotomy, so to speak, but, uh, but uh, you have to go on with, you know, the media and, and, and, um, and hopefully you haven’t started something that we can’t put back in the box here. But, um, you know, cold call me, call me naive, call me, um, idealist, uh, I don’t know. 

[00:48:11] Um, but I do believe that there is an ethical, uh, professional and, um, ethical, professional and, and just outright, um, responsibility to, um, to, to, to stop the divide. Right? We’re not what we are seeing currently with the polarization is, is, has the potential to be extremely self-harming for this, for this, uh, species and a prospect of us getting so bad to a point where we self-destruct isn’t that far off and call me fatalistic or anything, but it is, it is what it is. 

[00:48:53] If we keep going down those rabbit holes where we’re getting further and further and further apart, and we’re, nobody is unable to bring people back together so that we can pull in the same direction. We’re going to have some serious problems as a species. Yeah. And we are not even talking about, imagine electricity going off when we saw it with COVID, you know, it didn’t take, it didn’t take 24 hours to find out that we couldn’t work together. Everybody just went running in there, you know, every directions and. 

Travis Bader: [00:49:24] Gotta get toilet paper.

Seb Lavoie: [00:49:25] Yeah. And when I say everyone, obviously there’s always the people that are there to assist others. And we, we, we love them and we were lucky you’d have them, but, um, you know, it had, it had an incredible impact. And we’re talking about a virus with a survival rate that far exceeded anything, not to downplay it, but you know, that far exceeded anything that we would experience.

[00:49:45] If we had, I had, you know, a vx gas attack or whatever the case may be, you know, like something truly, truly dramatic. And so, you know, I realize, yeah. And, and just being devil’s advocate, then kind of going through my own processes, I realized that the news media. As we know it, uh, especially the paper format is, is dying. It’s a dying, it’s a dying business. And, uh, it’s really, really hard for them to even stay afloat. Right. 

[00:50:15] So I realized that there is a need for them to inject some sensationalism in there so that they can hit certain numbers that allows them to continue proliferating news. Right. However, at some point you kind of have to look at what are we after here? Are we, are we prioritizing financial gain or are we, uh, we are, we prioritizing, um, man, human kinds, right? Uh, and, and, and our ability to positively influence all of these people and change millions of lives.

[00:50:52] So when you’re at the end of the day, what you are doing, you may be successful, but are you, are you meaningful? You know, is that something that, that actually truly makes a difference and something that you can look at yourself in the mirror and be extremely proud to have been a part of? So for me, again, going back on track, what I want to see is I want to see fair reporting. 

[00:51:16] I’m not, I’m not asking for them to, um, sugarcoat the actions of police officers if there is misconduct. Absolutely not. That’s let’s expose them. Let’s deal with them. Let’s do all this good stuff. But adversely when, when things are done. Um, and, and, and, you know, members are rushing into a building to save a two year old. 

Travis Bader: [00:51:42] Right? Like recently. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:51:43] Like in this case. 

Travis Bader: [00:51:44] Yes. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:51:45] And they were stabbed in the process of doing so don’t go out and call and make a big headlines on your newspaper that states police officers were cut. Right. Because it’s semantics. I get it. But if I, if I speak to somebody that has zero frame of reference and I go, okay, two police officers were cut. And I said to them, I need you to describe to me what you just envisioned. 

Travis Bader: [00:52:12] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:52:12] They, they would. 

Travis Bader: [00:52:13] Look at their finger. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:52:14] A hundred percent. They would think, you know, when I caught myself with onion. So, cause we that’s what we do as humans, our cognitive, uh, experiences are now attached to whatever we know as a reality. 

Travis Bader: [00:52:23] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:52:24] What police work is, a lot of the times is extremely gruesome, extremely, extremely gruesome. So if, if obstacle or, uh, you know, stabbed that is a serious, serious life altering potentially life, the life ending situation and the person that’s done it also deserves to be exposed. And I’m not saying, I’m not saying necessarily with their name or anything like that, but I’m just saying don’t downplay it or diminish the actions by saying that police officers were cut. Cause how he makes us suspect sound like potentially you did something right. We didn’t do anything that bad. 

Travis Bader: [00:52:59] Didn’t trim his nails well enough earlier and kinda cut the. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:53:03] That’s right. And now the, the, the police officers that entered this place knowing, foresee, I don’t know the details, you know, for a fact, but like, we’ll assume that, we assume that there are weapons in most of the houses that we go to, especially if they’re problematic. And I can tell you that that’s the case. There’s no question. And if we were to think about, you know, kitchen knives who doesn’t have that? 

Travis Bader: [00:53:24] Everyone. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:53:25] So yeah, so there’s always tactical considerations when go on calls like this. And if the person is emotionally disturbed to the point where you’re dealing now with a set of circumstances where you have a two year old that’s in danger to the point where you launch essentially a hostage rescue, right. Cause there is exigency to do so, you know that some of those things are going to be coming your way. 

[00:53:46] Like that’s an accepted fact, like you will get either hurt or you’re going to have to respond to something you will be faced with. So for them to have that information front loaded in their frontal cortex and be ready to go and do it anyways, go get stabbed. And a, and a, and a two-year-old is being rescued, um, needs to be proliferated. It needs to be proliferated. The public needs to see, needs to hear the story and needs to see it as much as they are entitled to know when cops are conducting themselves embarrassingly. 

Travis Bader: [00:54:19] Sure. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:54:19] Right. 

Travis Bader: [00:54:20] I think that’s a really tall order, particularly considering the negative bias that we already talked about to begin with that people look towards, you can look towards a really positive event and some people clap, hey that’s great. Glad to hear it, but the negative ones and people just dwell over it. And on top of that, the media, holy crow. So if we talk about print media, these people said, wow, they’re just doing it to sell newspapers and a friend of mine in the media says, no no it’s so we can sell advertising, right?

[00:54:51] Really that the better their circulation the more advertising, the more we have, and we’ve only got a limited amount of space and we got to catch your attention. And so we’ll, we’ll put it forth like this. And you’re going to have people with negative biases against law enforcement because they got a speeding ticket when they didn’t think they should have. And this is our way to get back and they’ve got a pen or whatever it might be. 

[00:55:12] And I know law enforcement has, for a long time now,  been taking the media out to, uh, on ride alongs, take them out to the range, show ’em like these are the decisions that you have to make. Here’s some simulated training that they go through to give a better perspective in how things are reported. I don’t know if that change in how the media provides information is ever going to get any better, particularly considering that most people get their information through online sources now, and the online sources are heavily integrated with advertising and revenue streams through Google, which owns YouTube and Facebook which owns Instagram.

[00:55:56] And you’ll notice like you brought up COVID you can’t write something on social media without the advertising company coming in and putting their two bits on the, uh, on, if you write in, Hey, I got my COVID shot. You’re going to see a thing that comes up underneath that talks about COVID. I don’t know if fairness in reporting is something that we will ever really see again.

[00:56:21] And when you talk about this precipice of the divisiveness within, uh, people right now and how the media and most of our information sources are really playing out up to that. I see it. I think most people see it and it might be exacerbated by what we actually read in the media. It might be greater in our minds to what it might actually be, but at some point it will reach a tipping point and it’ll self level for better or for worse.

[00:56:54] Um, but when you talk about leadership and policing, which ties back to who are we hiring and why, how do we develop mental resiliencies? How do we develop basic people skills and a value system so that people can deal with at risk individuals or people on the street in a way that’s going to be conducive to publicly, um, positive reporting.

[00:57:20] Um, you have been developing a system to sort of change the face of leadership in policing, which I think will touch on all of these points that you’ve brought up. It’ll touch on how the media reports on it, because the leadership will now take hopefully a more proactive approach and how they’re and how they’re engaging the citizens.

[00:57:45] Like I’ve always thought, holy crow, a boots on the ground hearts and minds approach, like what the military will do when they go into a, a foreign area, uh, by the police. We do wonders to getting just the basic idea across. You talk about a person getting cut well holy crow. I’ve known people who’ve been stabbed, I’ve known people who’ve been killed through, uh, by knives, you don’t have to go that deep. It doesn’t have to be that big of a stab and you can do horrific damage. I remember I had a, I used to bounce back in the day. 

Seb Lavoie: [00:58:22] So did I. 

Travis Bader: [00:58:24] Ozone Nightclub, out in Surrey there back when that was around. And, uh, I, uh, I was hired there, the guy didn’t, I was working at a gym at the time and this one of the owners came by the gym and says, um, you’d be perfect. You should come, you should come bounce at, uh, at the ozone. I wasn’t even old enough to attend the ozone, but no problem. I’ll go there. I won’t tell them my age. Right. Um, they had a mass exodus of people leaving. Someone got shot in the face and the parking lot, and a body was found in the dumpster behind the strip club. That was right next door to it. 

[00:58:58] Um, but we encountered knives there. A friend of mine, I gave some body armour too, because I had a whole bunch of old VPD stuff. And he ended up getting poked in the belly and in the back. And, um, just went through just a little bit. And then he caught it in the arm and went through his, uh, his bicep when he put his hand up to kind of block his, his throat, but a bit of a digression there. Um, when we talk about how these things are reported, if people could understand the actual seriousness of what an edge weapon.

[00:59:31] Can be to an individual. They said, well, you got a guy and he’s got a knife. Come on. I mean, the way he just wrestled the knife out of his hand. What? He was X distance away, how far away is that? And of course, most police know about the Tueller drill and the Megliato and all, all the other, um, uh, theories on distance and how long a person can live and how far away they can be, um, lethal too.

[00:59:56] But all of these little points I think, could be addressed through what you’re talking about in the leadership and policing, how leadership interacts with media, how leadership interacts with the subordinates, so that they interact with the general public. Is that sort of the plan that you’re, cause as you’re talking here and I’m thinking about, it sounds like a very holistic approach that you’re looking at.

Seb Lavoie: [01:00:18] Yeah, absolutely it is. And, and, and the good news is, um, just to go back on something you said, cause I think I wouldn’t really, it would be a disservice for me to not sort of speak to it, but, um, or at least to give you some semblance of an opinion on it, um, I realize that striving for fairness is going to always be difficult.

[01:00:39] Now the problem is, is, is, is accountability, right? And so the problem is this. We have a prime minister right now that will not answer a question for 27 minutes while all of us are asking it again. And after three or four times that he’s skillfully skirt, uh, skirted his way out of answering the question. Nobody asks it again and I’m standing there going, somebody ask that question again. 

Travis Bader: [01:01:06] Hold them accountable. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:01:07] Yeah. So, and so this is what the issue is here. The public has a lot of power. If the public to turn around and say, tell us what truly happens here, tell us who’s truly dying from COVID, tell us who we would get the information unvetted right? But there’s a lot of information floating around that just we’re not getting, and we’re not asking for it, so we’re not getting it. So it’s the same with this, you know, take one isolated incident because we can go on, on tangents for days with how we’re going to make that happen. How is it actually logistically feasible and how do we all work together and whatever, right?

[01:01:45] But if you look at say the incident with a two year old was, so there is enough information out there to know that that occurred, right? And so now what needs to happen is there needs to be a public backlash on the way it was addressed in the first place. Let’s call it 500 emails, let’s call it 5,000 emails, let’s call it 50,000 emails. At some point it will have an impact. It will have an impact because the next person that comes along a similar situation will be last time we reported on this and we weren’t accurate. And we weren’t, we’re going to get 50,000 emails following, right. There was no repercussions.

[01:02:24] It’s acting with our repercussions just leads us to do anything. I’ll give you an example of this and I’ll, I’ll, I’ll sort of lead right into your bouncing, your bouncing example. Cause I was a bouncer in Montreal during a biker war between the work machine, the hell’s angels. It was war zone, you know, no question. But it’s interesting because as this war was unfolding and it was, as it was getting worse and worse and people were dying everywhere and, and caught in the cross fires and people were trying to kill people and club lineups with rocket launchers and all kinds of stupidness.

[01:02:56] Um, one of the things that never happened for the longest time was for people to say enough is enough, right? And so, and so those things proliferated and it continued and they just, it just, it was getting worse and worse and eventually. 

Travis Bader: [01:03:09] An innocent guy killed. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:03:11] An eight year old, got, got, got killed, right? And his Jeep blew up in a, essentially a vehicle born IED and boom. And he received, you know, some, some piece of parts of the Jeep and, and, and, and his life ended when that happened. Everybody in Quebec got together and they’re like, enough’s enough. They put their foot down. It took a year and a half to two years, following that to make hanging out with people with colours, illegal, I’m talking about like, obviously. 

Travis Bader: [01:03:41] Gang colors. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:03:41] Biker gang colours, right. And, and having any gathering of more than so-and-so the sentences got way stiffer and the pursuit and to the budgets increase for the units that were actually chasing those guys. And, and, and, and eventually what happened is there was nothing to be found in Quebec in terms of bikers. It was very boucher was in jail. His son was in jail. The nomads were completed as banded. It was everywhere. And so, and so all it took is for everybody to get together once. Right. And, um, anyways.

Travis Bader: [01:04:14] We’re seeing that now. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:04:16] We do. 

Travis Bader: [01:04:16] And they call it SLO or social license to operate, and we’re seeing it, but not necessarily in a positive way. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:04:22] No. Exactly. And this obviously a good tool can always be used a bad purpose right? You can have the, the, the most beautiful, you know, Lapua and uh, either kill an elephant or, or people. 

Travis Bader: [01:04:38] Yes. Yes. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:04:40] You know, um, anyways, so yeah, I, I do believe that, um, and I don’t want to make it sound like, um, I single-handedly, or, you know, hold the key to fixing all the policing problems because it would be, um, extremely disingenuous on my part to say that, but certainly what the plan is is to get people, to take responsibility for the things that are not going well for us as, as police officers and as departments and all these other things.

[01:05:12] And so teaching all levels of leadership to stop looking around for somebody to rescue them and to self rescue by being extremely critical of their own actions and also by seeking input and work cooperatively with their people. So I support you, you support me, not in a way that some media has put, it puts a spin on it, where I hide you, you hide me. We’re talking about ethical professional behaviours here, and how are we going to problem solve certain things in a prioritize and execute type fashion. 

[01:05:46] We’re having an issue with media relationship. Who’s fixing that and how, and how can we enable it and how can we help? We need to get the people that are resistant to change to step off. And what’s interesting with resistant to change is maladjusted leaders, as I call them, um, will, will often be in charge of change. That is really interesting. And one of the things that I found out is at times, I think they take that responsibility on to prevent it, you know, and it’s. 

Travis Bader: [01:06:15] I’d agree a hundred percent.

Seb Lavoie: [01:06:16] And it may be conscious or it may be subconscious, but it ends up happening anyway, I’m late. And my conversations are, you are supposed to be spearheading a movement to change here and introduce us to the, you know, to the century that we’re in and, um, be proactive, but you are not, you’re actually disabling everything. So I need you to curb the disabler and start looking, you know? Um, so anyways, so yeah, so that’s kind of what the idea is. You’re absolutely correct. And it impacts absolutely every aspect of your, uh, of your ability to police effectively. 

Travis Bader: [01:06:48] So responsibility and taking responsibility for actions is not something that the RCMP has a stellar reputation for now. They might do it, but in the public perception, the public eye, they definitely are, are held in the same sort of, um, vein as, uh, your example of Trudeau there. And I remember I was doing a firearms instructors course with the Vancouver police a number of years ago. 

[01:07:18] And there was a VPD officer during that time, who I believe he shoved somebody on the streets, it was a woman. I think she might’ve been disabled or there, there was some issue there. And within the period of time from that incident happening, the officer made a mistake. He thought he was being approached by somebody with ill intent, turned out this person was, um, MHA. And I think it was about a three-day span between that incident happening and the brass coming out and saying, yeah, that officer screwed up. Uh, we are now putting that officer on some retraining, pulled them from the current division until they’re trained up and, uh, we’ll report back after.

[01:08:04] And that just seemed to me, and I looked at the, uh, the rest, everyone else there was law enforcement and I looked at how everyone else dealt with it and like, yeah. Yep, makes sense, sounds good. And that approach to me, you get in front of the problem, you take responsibility for it, even if it’s a situation where the officer may be, they made the right decision based on everything, but didn’t have that one key piece of information for the department of stand up and take responsibility that sends a really strong message and conversely watching multiple issues.

[01:08:38] One of which is, uh, information up right over my right shoulder, where the RCMP, um, would rather double down. Circle the wagons, so to speak and not want to admit wrongdoing. And I always wonder why that is. Is there, is there the worry of opening Pandora’s box? If I say, yeah, we screwed up here that everything’s going to come flying or is it just arrogant protectionism. I don’t know. Am I off base in that sort of, because keep in mind, I was raised in a municipal police force family, which had a very different perspective of what a federal policing looks like. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:09:24] It’s also much, much easier to turn a small, uh, speed boat around than a aircraft carrier. Right. And so, but you’re not, no, you’re not wrong in the sense that, um, what I, what I could say, I guess, in what I could speak to, and not that I’m being limited in anything I say whatsoever, but I got to speak to what I know. I can just start making stuff up, uh, what I have seen. And what I do know is that, that the RCMP’s sort of media, um, strategy. And this is not a knock on doors that are working in a media strategies, but, but the broad strategy, um, is vastly underfunded for one. And also it’s like, there’s, there’s a S there’s a certain centralization of command there that needs to stop.

[01:10:04] It needs to be decentralized. It needs to be centred a region. And we need to have some strong teams of strong leaders. We’re talking about people, you know, that that can take ownership of things, that can dig into things and find facts that can be given without say, jeopardizing an investigation, or, um, making a statement that’s completely off base now from the perspective of the members.

[01:10:26] There’s no protective attitude on the, on the part of the organization, as far as our regular members are concerned, because these guys feel like they’re being dragged into the mud incessantly, and nobody is stepping up for them. So this, this, this is a two-way street. They’re actually  not providing information, but they’re also not defending the members right? So now you have you basically, it’s on two fronts where it’s a failing on two fronts, like communicate. 

[01:10:53] And, and one of the things that I really, really don’t like is when you start taking listeners and, and, and people in the public for idiots, like don’t, don’t start taking people for idiots. Like if you actually give them, uh, the totality of the circumstances, or at the very least an exemplification of what this might look like, or this might’ve occurred here, or we don’t know for sure all the details, but we can tell you this.

[01:11:15] We’ve asked our officers to go in a very tough situation, this occurred, as soon as we know more, we’ll give you more, but we don’t get, we don’t even give them that because we’re afraid of making a mistake. If you make a mistake, you own your mistake, you own your mistake publicly, and you apologize for it. And those are the mechanism that we’re going to put in place so that it does not repeat itself and this is it, it’s over. 

[01:11:38] You don’t lose respect when you do that as a leader. But when you start hiding being disingenuous, this is where you now establishing your character as an organization. And the problem with that is after that, everything you do is always tinted with the possibility that you are being disingenuous right?

Travis Bader: [01:11:54] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:11:54] And so for me, um, you know, I just, I would love to see a much more open format, which respect to how we communicate preemptively, whether it’s with operations or some of the work that we do, or some of the really difficult situation that our members are in and, you know, have take the public for what they are, which is if you give them a reasonable, uh, if you give them a reasonable facts that you give them a reasonable, they will come to a very similar conclusion.

[01:12:24] And yes, there’s always going to be the outliers that, you know, the conspiracy theorist and, and, and all these other things. I mean, conspiracy, conspiracy, we can’t get together on what kind of colour pen we’re going to purchase. So let alone broad scope conspiracy. 

Travis Bader: [01:12:40] Yeah, yeah. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:12:41] This is just, this is just unworkable, uh, in a government organization as far as I’m concerned. But, um, but yeah, I just, the lack of media strategy needs to be addressed and it’s not, uh, um, uh, sort of, um, a follow up to whatever happens. It’s preemptive.

Travis Bader: [01:13:01] It’s gotta be proactive. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:13:02] It’s proactive and it’s, and it’s after as well. Give you an example. Another example of this, uh, you know, that has tragic, has had tragic consequences. So Pierre Lemaitre was the gentleman, excuse me, that um, that came out and during the Surrey 6, sorry not the Surrey 60, um, the jet-ski incidents at the Vancouver airport. 

Travis Bader: [01:13:23] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:13:24] And he has made, uh, you know, uh, first statement that had some mistakes in it. And, and, and, uh, it wasn’t ill will or anything like that. It just was reported in a way that con, you know, conveyed some facts that weren’t necessarily facts, at the time uh, there was some missing pieces there. 

[01:13:45] So what happened was of course, Pierre wants to go back and wants to correct his mistake and wants to go to the public and say, look, I screwed up, I didn’t have all the facts here. And I thought I heard this and, or I was told this, but it wasn’t verified, or whatever the case may be and explained that to the public and let them know what happened. And he was told category clean, no, you are not going to do that. Took his life. 

Travis Bader: [01:14:12] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:14:12] He took his own life. 

Travis Bader: [01:14:13] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:14:14] Right. And, and, and, and we just, we, we, we, we need to understand. And it’s quite interesting because when you set a culture of ownership with yourself, as a leader, ownership and accountability with yourself as a leader, it starts, it starts bleeding into your culture and all of your people. And it’s really difficult nowadays to go anywhere and to have somebody say, This didn’t work out because I did this wrong, or I didn’t work. 

Travis Bader: [01:14:47] When do you see that? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:14:48] Hardly ever.

Travis Bader: [01:14:49] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:14:49] But on units, like say on the team I was on or whatever, we sat there. And that was a constant people were fighting over, who was responsible for what. As in trying to take the blame. You weren’t even working that day. You had nothing to do with it. You know, like it, it got through the next day, it got to an extent where everybody, the culture of ownership was there. Well, if you transpose this on a broad spectrum, you are doing it organizationally. You are now sent sending this down the ranks as well.

[01:15:19] So there is like, it’s a Pandora’s box. You’re absolutely right. And that if we do it correctly, it’s going to have a trickle down effect that will impact everybody’s ability to have that ownership. And I, when I say everybody, we always know there’s some that won’t, but the more you have the masses do the right thing, the less popular it is to have somebody not do the right thing. If that makes any sense. 

Travis Bader: [01:15:42] You know, that’s a really interesting way to look at it too, because with them social license to operate, and it seems like there’s a misguided approach to ownership of responsibility in society at the moment. And maybe that’s because they have not received a good example from those who should be in a leadership position when people are going and looking at events that happened a hundred or more years ago and saying, we’ve got to take ownership for this now.

[01:16:13] And that’s gonna open up a whole, whole other can of worms of things, but the level of ownership that officials are being asked to take upon themselves, sometimes they’re things that had absolutely nothing to do with them, I think is rather unreasonable by sometimes the vocal majority.

[01:16:33] Having a police force, having a government in power that will take responsibility and, and encourage the federal police force to do the same thing and set the parameters or the framework for what is right and what is wrong and what is acceptable or not will probably have a very massive effect in the populace who is looking at it and saying, Hey, it’s not right. I don’t know what is right. But my personal feeling is, and, and running off on all of these strange tangents, 

Seb Lavoie: [01:17:04] I couldn’t agree more. I, and I, you know, we’ll try to qualify this as much as I can and try to avoid, uh, you know, a nuclear explosion, but here’s what my thoughts are on that.

[01:17:20] You’re talking about events that occurred, you know, hundreds of years ago, you were talking about events that were say at the time church led supported by the current government and forced by the RCMP. Supported by the public that puts people into power. 

Travis Bader: [01:17:36] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:17:37] Right. So everybody along the way had a play in the horrible things that occurred. 

Travis Bader: [01:17:43] Sure. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:17:45] There isn’t one group in that, including the public that can turn around and look at anybody else and say you are responsible for that because the person of today is as responsible for those events as you are. 

Travis Bader: [01:17:58] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:18:00] Because you elected. If we’re going to go down that rabbit hole, you elected the people in power at the time. So therefore you today are responsible for what happened. 

Travis Bader: [01:18:11] But people don’t want to kind of like that because it’s a process of shifting responsibility. It’s. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:18:15] Again. 

Travis Bader: [01:18:15] That fault, not my fault. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:18:16] Again, it’s deflection. Right. And deflection is just everywhere, but it’s li it leads us nowhere. It leads us to further divide. Like we need to understand that we need 100% try to find collective ways to make. We’ll never change what happened. It is absolutely horrible. You know, I don’t even want to go down that. I mean, I think we all understand how,  how, how absolutely horrible those situations were. 

[01:18:43] And what are we doing today to ensure that this is never, ever, ever, ever repeated. That there is no bleeding, you know, of, of the same culture, continuing to proliferate all these other things. And I can, I will take ownership of this all day. But we need to understand, it was a very, very different time. All the people involved for the majority, like 99% of them are dead, there’s no question there. Um, especially those in positions of power, because it would have been already in their thirties or forties. And so now it’s how do we move forward? And what are we doing now to make things. 

Travis Bader: [01:19:25] You know, what one other tangent here and you brought it up. And I just figured it’s just been sitting in the back of my head. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:19:31] Oh hell, go ahead. 

Travis Bader: [01:19:31] Here we go. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:19:33] I’m just warming up. 

Travis Bader: [01:19:34] Yes. COVID. Yeah. That’s not a contentious topic. Probably a little less contentious of what we’re talking about at the moment. Um, so friend of mine, longtime friend, um, went to high school with him, gives me a phone call, says Travis, I’ve been tasked with taking a look at how we can increase, um, vaccination rates in the Northern areas of the province among hunters. And he’s, he works for the provincial government and he’s a director and he’s got a lot of people working under him and they’re looking, what, why aren’t we having a, an adoption rate like we’d like to see up there of the vaccination? 

[01:20:15] I said, well, I can give you my perspective and it may or may not be shared by these other people. But I think a biggest part of all of this puzzle is, is how that information is communicated. And just what you were saying earlier about not taking people’s intelligence for granted.

[01:20:33] You know, there was an article I read, I believe it was Jeff Bezos and whoever the new, I think it was Tim Cook, a few of them talking about creating cultures of success. And they said, unequivocally time and time again, they find that when the have a group of individuals who are highly driven and they bring somebody from the outside in to join that group, that person might not be the most highly driven person, but they will match that drive that the rest of the group has.

[01:21:03] Likewise, if they have a group of people who are rather lazy and they bring a highly driven person and it doesn’t take long for that person to kind of meet that norm. People will sort of leveled to the, to their environment to kind of want to fit in. So when we talk about not underestimating individual’s intelligence or the masses intelligence, why don’t we just anticipate that people have some intelligence and they can make a decision if we present them with that information?

[01:21:31] So I, I took them through point by point some of where my concerns were. I mean, nobody wants to feel forced into doing something. Nobody wants to be coerced if you give them the information and it makes sense they’ll probably readily jump at it and went through a plan that I figured, the whole thing, essentially just re revolved around honesty in how information is being provided.

[01:21:56] And we’ll see. ,He’s he took notes, he said, well, I, I doubt I have my doubts and, and how all of that will go across. But I’m just a bit of an interesting aside talking about responsibility and media. Responsibility in leadership, because he’s in a leadership role. Why, why provide information that’s partially true or true in one respect, but doesn’t take into other things, provided all there for people to look at.

[01:22:27] Like if, if the end goal of vaccination revolves around the fact that our country is publicly funded in our health care, and we lack ICU beds for, to deal with a pandemic on top of everything else, then say that. Maybe people will step up and say, well, you know, whether I believe in COVID or not, where they believe we’ll get this or not, I do know that people get in car accidents, people get hurt. And maybe if this will lessen my effects of, of, if I do get COVID it’ll lessen the strain on ICU, then put that out there for people. I don’t know. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:23:04] Yeah, absolutely. I mean, where you were referring to earlier, I thought that was worth mentioning is called synergical, basically um, what’s the word? You know, what a con the concept of synergy is, essentially you bring two people together. If you have one person dig a trench, how long has it taken that person? And if you bring another person and they work well together, how much has it taken took people, well, logic would say half the time. But the reality is it could be as much as three times as fast, right?

[01:23:34] Inversely, you can take that one person that takes a year to dig a hole. You bring another person, the wrong person, and now you’re dealing with triple the time that it would have taken one person to do it because you’ve negatively impacted the masses. But what you do, what you are speaking of is you already have an established synergy one way or another. Now you’re bringing one person that gets sucked in essentially with the culture that’s already established. 

Travis Bader: [01:23:58] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:23:59] It’s very, very powerful and it works. And that’s why you want to have that positive synergy in your workplace so that your people are actually a force multiplier. 

Travis Bader: [01:24:09] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:24:09] And they can do a lot more with a lot less in a lot more effectively. Um, yeah. And, um, where was I going with this again now? 

Travis Bader: [01:24:19] Well I guess the reason I kind of segwayed into that, cause it was brought up about COVID and it’s interesting about how media is putting it out on how the governments choosing to communicate, brought all that up. But the one overriding thing that I saw out of this whole COVID experience that was concerning more than the lack of toilet paper, right?

[01:24:38] More than all of these goofy little things that are going on, was the general group think. Like that was scary and that is scary. And when you take a look at how group think is affecting um, how we operate on a day-to-day basis. And I think that bleeds back over into, uh, organizations like the RCMP and what that group think looks like and how people can break out of just the, um, the echo chamber, so to speak.

[01:25:07] And it is something where they can replicate that Stanford, I think it was you were saying, the experiment where you, where you have more diversity in thought to be able to come, come to a solution, but that, that the general group think that I’m seeing right now, uh, is something in if we’re talking about it and let’s say a policing, uh, context is definitely something that can use some work.

[01:25:29] There’s a lot of positive in the group, the group thing, but there are areas within the leadership and in management that, um, would need to be positively effected in order for ownership to be taken on, on different tasks. And I, and I got to wonder how would you do that? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:25:47] Yeah. So what, it’s, it’s a big, big undertaking, right? So for me, one of the, excuse me, not sure what’s in there, cat maybe or something. Um, it, for me, one of the, one of the areas of focus has been changing the culture from the inside out, right. Because here’s what the issue is when, even when we’re having a conversation about management and leaders, all these people along the way, all the way that however, a high of a rank you want it to be, are thinking of their leaders.

[01:26:19] Right? So now what we have done is we’ve essentially taken 80% of the workforce and took them out of the problem solving equation. We didn’t do it, but they did it because that’s what happens right? And so for me, when I hear, you know, management this and management that, the question is always, what are you doing?

[01:26:40] What have you done today to make things better for the organization? What have you done today to make things better for your peers? What have you done today for whatever X, Y, and Z? Okay. And if the answer is nothing, zip it and get something done, I don’t want to, you know, I don’t want to hear it. I don’t want to hear deflection.

[01:26:58] I don’t want to hear who can do this for you or not. We’ll take, take some actions, make some calls and, and help someone do something. And so, um, I just, I just think that again, the more unpopular we make it to be a certain way, the easier it will be to affect a change. So we need to have the masses pulling in the same direction and that’s going to be, that’s going to be putting some pressure. Right. 

[01:27:26] And, and, and, and also. People are starting to leave the ranks because they’re retiring or they’re, they’re leaving the outfit or whatever the case may be. You’re going to now replace with a generation that’s been going through, those changes. And, uh, and, and, and now are part of a certain culture which changes the culture of the leadership, right?

[01:27:47] So, so you, and I say that to the people all the time is, you are the next wave of leaders. Hence why it’s so important for us to, and I mean, let’s call a spade, a spade, a police officer that is sworn in and receives a badge is expected to be a leader. 

Travis Bader: [01:28:03] Absolutely. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:28:03] Constable or not. They will be on critical incidents scenes. They will be dealing with accidents. They will be dealing with problem solving. They will be, they will take the lead on all of those things. So to say, well, you know what? I’m not interesting in leadership. Well, that’s for somebody that isn’t in policing. Period. 

Travis Bader: [01:28:19] Oh absolutely. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:28:19] Once you become a police officer, you’ve abdicated the right to not be a leader. And that’s not to say that, you know, you can’t also follow cause that’s a critical quality of a leader having the ability to follow.

Travis Bader: [01:28:29] Yeah. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:28:29] As well. 

Travis Bader: [01:28:29] You need to be a good follower to be a good leader? And I think most leaders who are in that position who have received that training. I remember at 12 years old, I was one of the things I had to memorize. Leadership’s the art of influencing human behaviour in a manner, uh oh, did I forget it? Influencing human behaviour to accomplish a mission in a manner so desired by the leader. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:28:49] A common goal, love it. Best, best description of leadership. And if you look at the L do you know the description of management?

Travis Bader: [01:28:55] It’s a science, not an art. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:28:56] And what is it normally assigned to? Assets. 

Travis Bader: [01:29:00] Right.

Seb Lavoie: [01:29:01] Things. 

Travis Bader: [01:29:01] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:29:02] Right. So I, I often hear that, uh, very impressed with you remembering that by heart, by the way. Um, but, um, but, uh, yeah, you know, and so now you have your manager, your manager versus leader kind of, uh, conversation. And of course you have the people that we know that manager meant managerial tasks or a part of leadership, or the other way around, isn’t always the case. So ultimately what you, what we should be striving for is having those inspirational leaders, the ones that people want to be like. 

Travis Bader: [01:29:34] Yes. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:29:34] Not, not like the buy, but be like, emulate, emulate, and, and, and, and, and, and, you know, once you start, once you start having those types of leaders and organizations, like leaders are pumped out, you know, quickly, it’s. 

Travis Bader: [01:29:52] Yes. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:29:52] It’s so interesting because people will go out and do the things that that leader has done to be where they are or to be, or to have the perspective that the perspective that they have or all these. And we see it now with all kinds of podcasts that are out there as, you know, you have the Jocko, willing Cindy and the, uh, you know, it’s, it’s very interesting how, uh, if, if Jocko says something, all of a sudden you have all these leaders everywhere going, okay, I should probably be doing this. I dropped the ball on this, and now it’s crazy. We’re in an age of information where there’s zero, excuse not to be up to par with the information out there. 

Travis Bader: [01:30:32] It’s fantastic. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:30:33] There’s so much information. 

Travis Bader: [01:30:34] So as you’re talking, I, I made, uh, three separate notes. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:30:39] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [01:30:40] Because I think it would be a value to people who are listening at the beginning, you’re talking about front-loading on your day, listening to positive affirmations, listening to positive people, talking about things. What is on your playlist for that? Who do, who do you tend to listen to?

Seb Lavoie: [01:30:59] Well it depends what, what kind of persuit I’m I’m after, right. If I’m listening to, if I’m listening to a straight up leadership podcast generally is going to be Jocko and it’s, and the reason why I really like Jocko notes just for Jocko. Cause I relate to him, he’s a black belt in JiuJitsu so am I, we have all these other things, but what I do like is that David Burke and all these other people that he has on there that are absolutely incredible humans and have wealth of knowledge and of the Vietnam vets and the SOG guys and all these things, right. 

[01:31:28] And, um, and I really in, and there will be reading off the, you know, the Marine Corps leadership groups was of course 350 years of combined leadership experience in the Marine Corps. I mean just incredible leaders coming out of the Marine Corps as, as we know. But, um, but I, this will be for that pursuit.

[01:31:47] Now, if I’m, if I’m, um, in a mood for say intellectual pursuit, I’ll be listening to the Jordy, Jordan Peterson or the Lex Freeman, or I will be listening to, um, who else am I listening to on the daily? Um, even, uh, what, what’s his name? Weinstein or Bert Weinstein or, and then there’s, um, Sam Harris, even I will. You know, like I, I just, and again, you know, there’s some contentions around Jordy P and listen, like when I listen. 

Travis Bader: [01:32:16] That’s a sharp,  sharp dude.

Seb Lavoie: [01:32:17] He is and when I listen, when I listen to, when I listen to people like this, I don’t listen to gospel. Like I’m not, you know, drinking everything. 

Travis Bader: [01:32:27] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:32:28] I take what I hear and I process it in what and, and, and I try to affect my own mindset, my own, uh, intellectual sort of, you know, sort of override my own bias to try to see other, other angles. But at the end of the day, I may look at Jordan P and say, I totally agree with 99% of what you said today, but that 1% I can’t get behind. 

Travis Bader: [01:32:49] Well, 99% of the stuff he says, isn’t absolutely concrete. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:32:54] It’s not. 

Travis Bader: [01:32:55] Most of it is quite open. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:32:57] It is. 

Travis Bader: [01:32:57] And that’s the beauty of it that some people will look at it and take it as concrete and they’ll get right up in arms about it when he’s just making a general question. Most of it is questions. Um, yeah. Interesting. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:33:07] But he’s, you know, he’s, he’s got one of the worse personality traits you can have, and that is honest and genuine right. 

Travis Bader: [01:33:16] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:33:17] And he’s just honest and it is a very unpopular time to be. It just, it just is. But I think the more of us stand up and actually have the stones to do it. Um, you know, we need, we need more and more of that. And I think what you, which what you’re trying, starting to see in the, um, in the public, you know, in the, on a social media or otherwise, what you are starting to see is people starting to understand that there’s some different areas here that we have been, you know, we went kind of too far the other way.

[01:33:51] So now they want to bring that back to the measured, you know, on measured ground, so to speak. And then, and then, and really have, um, I guess, a more balanced approach to some of the issues that we’re faced with and used, you’re starting to see the tides turn. Like you’re starting to see, you’re starting to see it, you know, it’s quite interesting. 

Travis Bader: [01:34:10] It is. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:34:11] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [01:34:11] It goes far one way. It’ll go far the other way. The universe has a funny way of unfolding as it should. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:34:16] It is. And it’s cyclical right. 

Travis Bader: [01:34:17] It is. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:34:18] In a hundred years, they’ll have the exact same issue. 

Travis Bader: [01:34:20] Yeah. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:34:21] It is. It is what it is, but we’ll be long gone by then. 

Travis Bader: [01:34:24] So the other one I wrote down here was, okay, so you spent a fair bit of time in policing and ERT you’re, you’re in roles of higher stress, higher excitement, higher exhilaration, high reward for what you’re doing for effort out, what are you doing to replace that?

Seb Lavoie: [01:34:42] No, yeah, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s hard, I would say, but I would say what I miss the most is the thought process that goes behind, um, solving tactical dilemmas. I just love to use my brain and to have, to problem solve something that has only bad um, solutions. Just which one of those is the less worse and how are we going to mitigate the risk and how are we going to be able to articulate taking a certain course of action and how is that course of action justify and you know, all those things.

[01:35:29] So I really liked the intricacies of doing that. I love doing that. I missed out a ton and it’s interesting because I, I will still get phone calls, not necessarily from my team, but I will because they’re very capable, but I, but I will get phone calls sometimes from teams across the country that perhaps haven’t had the same exposure or, or, and sometimes just to kind of run problems by me. And I love when people do that. 

Travis Bader: [01:35:52] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:35:53] Because it keeps me, it keeps me thinking, it keeps me engaged in the problem solving realm. But I would say though, is in my life, I have driven absolutely everything I do into the ground. Everything. Moderations for cowards. I don’t believe in it. And, uh, when I wanted to be a SWAT team leader, I went all out and I stayed there for 13 years, you know, 12 and a half years, so to speak.

[01:36:22] Well yeah. I mean, and, and, and so I literally took that out of my system. You know, I took it out of my system. Now, the one thing, the one thing that I, that I cannot put enough emphasis on is you can’t let something define you. 

Travis Bader: [01:36:39] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:36:40] If something defines you completely. Let me rephrase that. Something may define you partially. 

Travis Bader: [01:36:49] External. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:36:49] And partially. 

Travis Bader: [01:36:50] Right.

Seb Lavoie: [01:36:51] You have to have a, all these other pieces that also define you. 

Travis Bader: [01:36:55] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:36:55] So when one of those pieces goes missing, you are re you are capable of reorging and being the same person that you were use, the experience that you’ve acquired at the time at which you were, you know, involved in this, in this engagement. But th but it doesn’t destroy you. So when, uh, one of the things that we see with old generations RCMP is like the people with 30, 40 years of service is that a lot of the times they feel they are nothing if they’re not engaged. 

Travis Bader: [01:37:24] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:37:24] So the death rate of some of those members, retiring police officers, municipal, or otherwise are astronomical because the sense of purpose has kind of completely vanished and disappeared. And, um, and it couldn’t be further from the truth. 

Travis Bader: [01:37:42] Oh, absolutely. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:37:42] It couldn’t be further from the truth. But what we need to do is we need to start teaching our young officers and everybody, or firefighters or whoever to engage what you are doing professionally does not define you. Those are all it’s part of who you are, and it’s a part. If it goes away, just like anything else, you’re going to re reorg, regroup and go again and, and, and, you know, continue to be the person that you are and have a positive, positive impact on others. 

[01:38:07] So for me, one of the tiny little bit nice, I always liked to be engaged in, um, I don’t know how to, this is quite interesting. I don’t generally lose, you know, how to articulate certain things, but I’m having an issue with this. But it’s essentially, if we act on the premise that I lived a warrior ethos since I was very, very young, either through martial arts or through my professional engagements or whatever the case may be. And when I say warrior, I don’t, I don’t mean war in terms of. 

Travis Bader: [01:38:43] No, I get what you’re saying. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:38:44] But just live a certain ethos. I carry it on now. I’m a JiuJitsu black belt. I got it this year when I was retired. 

Travis Bader: [01:38:52] Good for you. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:38:52] Now I’m starting judo. Next week, I’m going to wrap a white belt around my, around my waist. This is my third pursuit of black belt over my course of my, you know, my years engage in martial arts. I am 45 years old, completely stoked and excited to go to judo route. And I’m going to get, you know, tossed over and over again. I’m going to learn, I’m going to learn to things and yeah, it’s going to be hard on my body and all these other things. 

[01:39:16] But so now I’ve kind of resurrected my energy. Now I want to, I want to be fully engaged in Judo. And so I, I find all those things that are direct, almost, um, I would say almost in line with what I’ve and how I’ve lived my life. And I will find as many of those things as I can without, by way of working out and going on hikes with, you know, if we go on hikes with a family, I’ll put a weight vest on and you know, I, I’m still in, I’m still in that mode. I can, I’m going to drive this one into the ground. And when they do find my body, when it’s all said and done, they will say this one is a done. 

Travis Bader: [01:39:55] Done, nothing leftover. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:39:56] And if there’s ever an option to bring somebody back, they’ll say not him. He’s too beat up. 

Travis Bader: [01:40:01] Too worn out. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:40:03] He’s definitely done. 

Travis Bader: [01:40:04] Oh man. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:40:05] Yeah.

Travis Bader: [01:40:06] That’s, I like that persp, so I guess at the core that warrior mindset is what defines you, not so much the job, not so much the martial arts, not the leadership . Training, but the mindset or the drive of always trying to the pursuit of excellence essentially. Would that be fair? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:40:26] Yeah, yeah. Yeah it would be an, I mean, let’s get something straight. I never reached it anywhere, but. 

Travis Bader: [01:40:32] And no one does. And that’s, that’s why they call it the pursuit of excellence. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:40:36] And, and, uh, you know, the line is, is consistently pushed, pushed, you know, over and over and over. And, and that’s the beauty of things. And we do so many things that we skim the surface on. Uh, and what you start, what you start understanding is that once you start going deeper into things, there is so much more enjoyment.

[01:40:55] Um, one of the things that I do with my groups, when I, when I present, especially on the, um, on the introspective leader course, is a simple exercise to illustrate how we’re overthinking certain things. And I ask people like, what do you like dark or light coffee? And people will say, oh, I like dark, I like light. And then you generally ask why. And one of them will say, well, dark is stronger in caffeine or whatever right. 

Travis Bader: [01:41:20] Sure. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:41:21] And so, and so the reality is that, you know, light coffee is not roasted nearly as much. So the grain are denser and generally negligibly higher in caffeine. And if you really want to increase your caffeine content, you’re going to have to jack up the amount of coffee you’re drinking, right? And so that’s one piece. 

[01:41:38] But the other piece to this, aside from the fact that most people think that dark coffee is actually stronger when it isn’t the other piece to this is the taste that you’re after comes from the regions, from where to coffees come in. Because coffee beans take the taste of their environment. And so if you’re going to Brazil, your tea, your coffee is nutty. If you’re going into Ethiopia, your coffee tastes more like chocolate. 

[01:42:00] And so w and then once you understand that there is a word there, what you start doing is you stop focusing on lighter, dark roast, and you start looking at where’s the coffee from, and what do I feel today. You know, do I feel like vanilla hint or do I feel like, you know, and I’m being a total clown, but you know what I mean? 

[01:42:19] Like whatever the case may be, and then you can really go down and explore coffees and regions. So imagine that you’re traveling to Hawaii, you’re traveling to Iceland, you’re traveling to all these regions. And all you’ve ever said is I want a dark coffee you’ve missed out on, you know, how many thousands of potentially incredible flavour of coffee. And so this is a really, really oversimplified process and I’m not even touching the surface of it. Cause I got, you know, a very, um, you know, rudimentary level coffee knowledge. 

Travis Bader: [01:42:52] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:42:52] There’s people having masters in coffee. 

Travis Bader: [01:42:55] Sure. You know, coffee sommelier. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:42:56] 100% there are. And so, but the beauty with this and the beauty of the introspective leader course is that I believe that you can convey a message to people that this will not only make you a better leader, but it would also teach you to appreciate life more.

Travis Bader: [01:43:17] I would agree with that a hundred percent. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:43:21] It is absolutely amazing to go everywhere around the world and say, here’s an Iceland coffee. Where does this grow? What does it taste like? It’s light, dark, medium. Doesn’t matter. Like, I want to try that. So now you try that and you’re like, wow, that was absolutely amazing, right. And we do that with absolutely everything. We, we tend to really really say surface level. 

Travis Bader: [01:43:45] We do. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:43:45] Even though information is readily available more than in any other time in human history. 

Travis Bader: [01:43:50] That’s probably why we stay surface level because. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:43:53] It’s too easy to just find out. 

Travis Bader: [01:43:54] It is. And there’s so much information out there that the retention level of the information that comes and goes, it comes, it goes, to process. We today take in on a daily basis so much information that it can be completely overwhelming for, for most people, honestly. And it kind of puts them into a place of inaction. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:44:18] And I, I love that. That’s Hicks law, right? 

Travis Bader: [01:44:21] Hicks law, I was just going to say that yeah. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:44:23] Having to having too many options and, and, and, and it stifles your ability to make a call, but here’s what needs to happen in my opinion. And I, you know, um, what matters at the time, right? And so the issue is you’re right. We’re consistently bombarded by all those things, and we’re doing it 24 7. Now, if I’m selecting coffee and I live in the moment, I’m selecting coffee right now, I know thinking about my phone call to Karen. 

Travis Bader: [01:44:50] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:44:51] Right. And so if we have, and this comes down to mindfulness ultimately. And so if, if we have the ability to actually focus on the now and a little bit before and a little bit after just, you know, for, for good measure, we now we now can focus our attention. The now, and what is the decision that I’m making right now and what is entailed in that decision? And, you know, and so it’s not an overthinking process. It’s like, yeah, it’s useless information until you need it. 

Travis Bader: [01:45:21] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:45:22] And there is no one of the, it works hand-in-hand with the fact that our brains have the ability to retain. Listen, there’s people out there that can recite an entire yellow phone book. There is no limit to how much information we can have. The problem is, is there is limit to our focus. 

Travis Bader: [01:45:38] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:45:38] That’s what the problem is. So you can have the information that you can use when convenient, but it’s going to take you 10 minutes to understand how to select your coffee. That 10 minutes you just invested in years of coffee enjoyment. 

Travis Bader: [01:45:53] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:45:53] To be used when you are selecting coffee. Not when you’re running your team meeting, right. 

Travis Bader: [01:46:02] You know, a bunch of things that you brought up there. And, you know, you might have to come on for another podcast if I can coerce you just because I don’t want to go too long for everybody here. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:46:13] It’s interesting though, they, they, they’ve. People are listening to the long podcast. It’s completely insane. They break them down in pieces. And Jordan Peterson was talking about that. He says, you would think that a three-hour podcast wouldn’t be as successful. And he’s like, they’re the more successful. 

Travis Bader: [01:46:26] Really? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:46:26] Yeah. 

Travis Bader: [01:46:27] Okay. Well maybe I’ve got to start breaking it down into pieces. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:46:30] Break the mold.

Travis Bader: [01:46:30] I’ve always gone for 45 minutes to an hour. My ethos behind the podcast was, and is, I want to bring something positive to people. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:46:37] Sure. 

Travis Bader: [01:46:38] I want to bring either entertainment or education or something that they can walk away with and say, I learned something or I’m better for listening to it. So in that I try to plan the podcast and plan the guests to bring value to the listener base. And I figure, they’re going to tune out after a certain point. So I’ve always looked at maybe I’ll just put it out there, anybody listening who’s made it this far, let me know. Okay. Let me know what you like to hear [email protected]

[01:47:04] But when you’re talking about, um, what defines you, you’re talking about, um, when we look at, when you’re on the job, when you come out and, uh, what you’re doing for that excitement level, as well as living in the moment.

[01:47:23] I very good friend of mine. He’s actually been on this podcast in the past, and he’s talked about his SAS selection. He talked about his time British army, and he was operating the 338 Lapua over there. I used to say Lapooa until I was schooled over at SHOTShow. and no, no, no, it’s Lapwa. Okay.

Seb Lavoie: [01:47:41] Okay guys. 

Travis Bader: [01:47:42] At their booth. Um, but he is, he got into extreme alpinism and, um, he does that a fair bit. He’s going through his ACMG mountain guide accreditation and all the rest, and, uh, found that it’s a very, uh, positive outlet for him where he’s now making those operational decisions. In the mountain, you’ll have a group that he’ll be bringing up and he’s brought me up a number of times and definitely pushed my boundaries as well when, for the better. 

[01:48:14] But it really forces you to be in the moment. And maybe that’s a situation of unconscious, unconscious coping, where as opposed to just being mindful, you’re now forced to be mindful. When you’re surfing, you’re forced to be mindful in the moment. When you’re rock climbing, you’re forced to look at every time, every place you put your hand, every, every piece of gear that you put into a crack and check it. Um. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:48:43] It’s outcome focused. 

Travis Bader: [01:48:45] It is. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:48:45] If you don’t do it, you will, something critical or dire could happen. And it’s exactly the same with JiuJitsu, it forces you to be in that role, if you’re thinking about your office meeting or something else, your back just got taken. 

Travis Bader: [01:48:59] But th in all of that thinking, cause I watched him as he goes through and as he gets, he’s getting older and he’s maturing in his alpinism and all the rest. And he’s had some injuries and, and seeing the, uh, the thought process behind. Like you look at, uh, the Ueli Steck. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard that name before, but in, in the alpinism world, kind of a big name passed away a few years ago, but he had just record runs up a lot of, uh, very iconic mountains with little to no gear and, and just like no time at all.

[01:49:32] But at some point of pushing, pushing, pushing, and driving things like you do with the different activities you get into, you reach a point of diminishing returns. And in Ueli’s case, he’s no longer around anymore. He had a fall on one of his trips, did, not adequate protection. That mental management process and that mindset of knowing enough, like, what is enough?

[01:49:58] When do you have enough? Do you find that difficult when you start getting into these different endeavours that you get into? Like, what is the, what am I going to be happy? What’s enough. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:50:11] Well, I’m going to reframe the question for you. 

Travis Bader: [01:50:13] Okay. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:50:13] Was that gentlemen going to a destination or is the journey that he enjoyed?

Travis Bader: [01:50:18] Which one? Ueli or? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:50:19] Yeah, Ueli. I mean, it’s the journey that he truly enjoyed. 

Travis Bader: [01:50:23] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:50:23] He wasn’t going anywhere, right? So now let’s, let’s, let’s take Ueli,  with the same fire inside of him and let’s sit him on a porch for the last 30 years. Actually let’s sit him on the porch at the time of death and say, we just extended your life 30 years and you can sit here and watch the birds and the cars go by. And then. 

Travis Bader: [01:50:45] Say hell no. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:50:46] And then go back and say, okay, look, we’re going to return you 30 years before, but on one of those climbs you’re going to be done. You would pick that. I can guarantee it. 

Travis Bader: [01:50:57] For somebody like that, I would have to agree. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:50:59] A hundred percent. So, so for me, it’s, we’re acting and this is just, it’s just a societal thing. And I think it just has to do with the fact that we’re so comfortable, right? If you were in Somalia right now, I grew up there. You wouldn’t be thinking that far in advance because you’ve seen people die left, right. And centre incessantly every day. So you’re not, you’re also could be very, very different.

[01:51:24] We’re seeing death as this big monster. None of us is coming out of this alive. None of us is like this isn’t, this isn’t a destination type thing, this is a journey. And he died doing what he loved the most. It would have been no different for me if I was dying, doing some tactical operation, hopefully by not something completely stupid that I did. 

Travis Bader: [01:51:47] Sure. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:51:47] You know, and or, or somebody else did that now they have to live with that. But if, if we were to take all the complex complexity outside, you know, out of it and say, okay, you stood up for what you felt was right at a time at which somebody needed to step up. And you like many before you have done have sacrificed your life. Sign me up. 

Travis Bader: [01:52:12] Very good point. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:52:15] I just, I just think that longevity versus intensity, I’ll take intensity of my life, you know? Um, and that’s just. 

Travis Bader: [01:52:26] Every man dies. Not every man truly lives. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:52:29] That’s just, that’s just how I feel about it. I just, I just truly think that if he was given the choice, he probably would have picked the same choice.

Travis Bader: [01:52:35] I like that. Yeah. Well, one last thing I have here. Yeah. That was actually going to start with this, but we kind of went through and are in a route here. But when I look at the podcasts that you’ve been doing right recently, I, you see the number of podcasts and places that you’ve been, uh, you’ve been speaking.

[01:52:57] It strikes me that it’s similar to working out it’s similar to JiuJitsu and that you’re training for something. Am I correct in the, in that casual observation, are you training for a, uh, for something? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:53:12] A podcast marathon. 

Travis Bader: [01:53:14] Your, your own podcast or to be on certain podcasts, hopefully in the future? Or is there, do you have a goal in that?

Seb Lavoie: [01:53:22] I mean, it would be semi disingenuous to say I don’t have a goal. I mean, my goal is always to get better. 

Travis Bader: [01:53:28] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:53:29] And I like to be, I like to have conversations. I love to have conversations. It’s especially productive to way, you know, bilateral communication conversations. Um, and I like to do it because I know that, um, I, I have an ability to generally connect with people. So I, I know that there is value to it. So I, I really enjoy doing that. 

[01:53:57] And I don’t overstate the value of it. I don’t think I’m critically important or anything like that. But what I do think is that there are certain conversations there ought to be had that we’re not having, that I would love to be a part of. And if going on bigger and bigger platform is something that’s down the road for me, I would, I would love that. I would love that. Here’s the other thing. And that’s something that surprised quite a few people, but I also would be totally okay with going a podcast and not speak about policing at all.

Travis Bader: [01:54:31] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:54:32] At all. I can, I can have conversations about a million different things, and I’m not suggesting that during an entire three-hour podcast, I’m not going to refer to an experience that I had or something, you know, because it’s been a part of me for so long and it’s taught me some valuable lessons, but in terms of the actual topic. Uh, it could be absolutely anything. I just love to have conversations and I, and being on podcasts really feels good. 

[01:54:58] Like I love to do it. I love to do it. I think it, I think it’s, and so people have suggested, you know, you, maybe you should have your own and all these other things, I really don’t want to do any editing. And I, and I don’t think I’m that great of an interviewer’s to be honest with you, and maybe I become better or, you know. But I just, um, I just prefer, I just kind of prefer being a guest, if that makes any sense. 

Travis Bader: [01:55:20] Oh it does. You know, when I started this podcast, I hadn’t listened to it really, any podcast prior. I was on a podcast, a friend of mine had me on his podcast, he’s got a local business here in these, uh, teaches new hunters and, and, uh, that was fun. And then I, uh, went down, I saw Steve Rinella, he’s got a Netflix show called MeatEater, and he’s a. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:55:43] Yeah, I follow the show. I watch it, Joe Rogan and everything. I just love the show. 

Travis Bader: [01:55:47] So got to meet Steve and Janice and a few of the other people on there and actually became good friends with one of the people who’s with MeatEater there. And, uh, I thought, well, this is kind of neat, but entirely outside my comfort zone. I’ve got ADHD, I have a conversation up until a point where I loose interest and usually that’s why I just get up and walk away. That’s so this has been a for me something to share my positivity, and it’s been a very positive outlet to try and support others in the, uh, who have similar interests.

[01:56:21] And I’ve specifically not called this the, like say the MeatEater podcast, or the, uh, the firearms podcast, because those are only small portions of things that interests me. And it’s kind of, in some ways, um, it can be detrimental in the short term because people look at the title and like, what the hell am I going to be listening to here?

[01:56:43] But I’m hoping that in the longterm, the breadth of the guests and the breadth of what we’re bringing in with the underlying positivity, as well as, as we do this, I can feel, I feel myself very slowly getting a little bit better, less um’s and ahh’s and better able to engage. So similar to where you’re at, uh, not only as a positive thing, I found I’ve found the podcast to be a challenge and something that requires constant study, constant concentration, research on people.

[01:57:14] How, how do I engage better or better equipment or whatever it might be so. It’s, um, definitely a different experience hosting the podcast than being on a podcast as a guest. I don’t know, I think, uh, if you ever do want to, uh, take on that challenge, I think he would do very, very well at it. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:57:34] Yeah. I’ve, I’ve heard that, I’ve heard that a few times and I, I, you know, it’s almost like something, something in me says, um, now is not the time type deal, you know, like it just, just. 

Travis Bader: [01:57:47] Trust your gut. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:57:48] Yeah and I’ve yeah. The reason why I really, really believe that is that I’ve pretty much run my life like this, and it’s always paid dividends. And sometimes I could be having this conversation with you and tomorrow morning, I’m ready to have my own podcast. 

Travis Bader: [01:58:02] Right. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:58:03] You know what I mean? Like it, it changes. 

Travis Bader: [01:58:04] Click. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:58:04] Really quickly. And then it’s like, okay, the time is right, knuckle down that let’s get this done. So it will be interesting right now, of course I’m floating, right. And at very living very organically since retiring from a very structured and regimented, you know, um, lifestyle over the course of my military and then RCMP career. Essentially, I’ve been institutionalized for the better part of my adult life and so now I’m learning to, you know, do things very organically and I really enjoy it.

[01:58:34] So we’ll see, it’s not outside the realm of possibility. I would love to hit, you know, the, the, the Jordan Peterson to Joe Rogan’s the, the, the, the Jocko, if there’s a, uh, you know, if I can contribute something, if, if there’s a, if there’s a feeling a true, a true feeling that I can contribute something positive. 

Travis Bader: [01:58:55] Right.

Seb Lavoie: [01:58:55] And that’s that’s that. I wouldn’t want to just go there just to go with there. You know, you look at me, I’m on the Jocko podcast and what am I talking about? Well, whatever. 

Travis Bader: [01:59:02] Oh, you’d look back and you wouldn’t be proud of that. 

Seb Lavoie: [01:59:04] No, exactly. So, yeah. 

Travis Bader: [01:59:06] Very cool. So maybe we’ll just wrap this up with, if we did another podcast, what, if you could do a podcast about anything, anything. Pull it out of a magic box and say, this is what we’re going to talk about. What would you want to talk about?

Seb Lavoie: [01:59:27] Wow. That’s um, that’s a tough one. If we could do a podcast on absolutely anything. 

Travis Bader: [01:59:38] Or would that just change day by day, depending on what’s currently? 

Seb Lavoie: [01:59:43] No. There is so many subjects and so many things that I’m interested in. Um, and I think we have a vested interest in absolutely everything that surrounds us, right. And so we could talk about, you know, kids and raising ’em and we could talk about outdoors and, and, and, and we could talk about travel. We could talk about, you know, like, I mean the animals and the list just goes on and on, you know, animals might get weird though here, it’s a hunting podcast, right. So we’ll leave the, leave the animals 

Travis Bader: [02:00:19] You know what I think it’d be fun to talk about? 

Seb Lavoie: [02:00:21] What? 

Travis Bader: [02:00:21] Your new business and starting it and the challenges of running a business. 

Seb Lavoie: [02:00:25] Sure. 

Travis Bader: [02:00:26] The other thing that’d be kind of interesting cause I got a sense I could be wrong, but I think there’s a spirituality to, uh, to the martial arts and to you and what you do and how that guides the mental management process, which we didn’t even touch on. And I think that whole aspect would be a very interesting one to talk about, but maybe, um, maybe we just put a pin in this one for now and uh, go get some food. 

Seb Lavoie: [02:00:48] Yeah man. I’m all for spirituality podcast down the line. Thanks for having me. 

Travis Bader: [02:00:52] Thank you very much for being on this podcast.

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