Matt Jenkins Silvercore Podcast episode 126
episode 126 | Mar 26, 2024
Hunting & Fishing
Hunting & Fishing
Personal Growth
Outdoor Adventure

Silvercore Podcast Ep. 126: A Hunters Insight on Mental Fitness

Travis Bader sits down with the adventurous and passionate outdoorsman, Matt Jenkins. Join them as they delve into Matt's love for hunting, his experiences in the wild, and the importance of connecting with nature. Discover how Matt's journey led him to embrace the beauty and serenity of the great outdoors, and gain valuable insights into mental health and its relationship with outdoor activities. Don't miss this engaging conversation that will leave you inspired to embark on your own outdoor adventures. Tune in now and deepen your connection to the natural world.
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Silvercore Podcast 126 Matt Jenkins

[00:00:00] Travis Bader: I'm Travis Bader, and this is the Silvercore podcast. Silvercore has been providing its members with the skills and knowledge necessary to be confident and proficient in the outdoors for over 20 years. And we make it easier for people to deepen their connection to the natural world. If you enjoy the positive and educational content.

[00:00:30] Travis Bader: We provide, please let others know by sharing, commenting, and following so that you can join in on everything that Silvercore stands for. If you'd like to learn more about becoming a member of the Silvercore club and community, visit our website at silvercore. ca.

[00:00:52] Travis Bader: So a while back, I was recording a podcast with Sean Taylor, episode number 85 out at his house in Roslyn. And we wrap it all up and he says, have you met my buddy? Matt Jenkins got to talk with this guy. And then again, talking with Steve Wilson in episode one 20. And he's talking about this Matt Jenkins guy.

[00:01:10] Travis Bader: You got to talk with him. He loves to hunt. He's such a great guy. And I've heard your name before, and I've, I've seen you on different internet forums, but we never had the opportunity to meet up until, well, a little bit ago. So why don't I just start off here? Welcome. Back to the Silvercore podcast, Matt 

[00:01:31] Matt Jenkins: Jenkins.

[00:01:31] Matt Jenkins: I'm super happy to be back. Thank you. 

[00:01:34] Travis Bader: Well, we were, so, uh, Bredow was looking for a place to run a program during OPEC. And I guess that's the, the law enforcement, uh, show and tell big trade show type thing for, uh, the gun industry and security. Type companies. And, uh, so Breda Stoker, Shani reaches out and says, Trav, we're looking for a range.

[00:01:57] Travis Bader: We want to arrange where we can run. And X, Y, Z, we got full auto, we got suppressors. We've got all the cool kitten toys. And so I said, yeah, the range Langley, that's your ticket. You got to check out the range Langley. They're perfectly set up for it. Like, no, no, no, no, no. We want an outdoor range. And they got all these different requirements.

[00:02:15] Travis Bader: I said, no, no, no, no. You want the range Langley. And here's why anyways, they looked at it. They said, okay. Fair enough. You're right. That's a place to go. I'm there. I show up, I say hi to everybody and do a quick post on social media. And like, literally I post this thing out, I have a picture in. Ding, there's Matt Jenkins.

[00:02:38] Travis Bader: He says, okay, I'm in. Can I come? What's up? I said, yeah, you just got to have a badge, which you do. And, um, and you're in there. So that was, that was the first time we actually got to meet face to face and really glad I was able to get to meet you. That's pretty cool. And then 

[00:02:52] Matt Jenkins: what happened? We, uh, decided to sit down and report a podcast and , as I, as I do, you get a case of the cold feet and you start thinking about what you said and what you didn't said and say, and all of a sudden like, Ooh, I'm overthinking this one and I think we gotta do it again.

[00:03:07] Travis Bader: Well, I thought it, honestly, I thought it was a really good podcast. I, I really enjoyed it. There's a lot of information in there, but, uh, when you said pull the plug, I talked to the, the social team, I'm like, yep, we're pulling the plug. And then later on, you're like, you know, I really wish I was on this one course.

[00:03:23] Travis Bader: And it's some great information in there. And I really wanted to get that information across. And so I said, great. You know, the, my job here is to portray the best possible you. And if you weren't happy with the last one, even though I thought it was pretty good, you did a pretty damn good job. 

[00:03:41] Matt Jenkins: I appreciate that it, uh, of course the immediate feeling goes to guilt because looking at, uh, the production value and I don't know how much of the studio you can actually see in the YouTube, but it's a pretty impressive facility and coming in for a couple hours and then having it scrubbed was, I felt pretty bad.

[00:03:56] Matt Jenkins: You know what? 

[00:03:56] Travis Bader: This is all part of the process. And I, I was mentioned earlier. So Anthony Stasek or he XSBS owner of, uh, co founder of, uh, through dark, I think it'll actually, yeah, there you go. Shameless plug. Wearing a through dark shirt. Honestly, they fit the last 30 or so podcasts. You'll notice I'm wearing their kit.

[00:04:15] Travis Bader: Anyways, he's in the UK. We set the time. I'm up around two 30 in the morning to record the podcast, drive out here, getting myself all ready doing jumping jacks. I got to be on. I can't be all groggy and the time rolls around to record and he doesn't show up. I'm like, Oh, I missed it by an hour. I'm an hour early.

[00:04:34] Travis Bader: So I wait another hour and no, I'm actually Day early. So, okay. Regroup again the next day, get up proper time. This time, Anthony doesn't show up. So we regrouped again a couple of days later, but that was a few mornings of getting up, but this is all, this is all part of doing a podcast, so it's all good. Um, yeah.

[00:04:54] Travis Bader: And you know, shamelessly. So here's another plug, uh, coming up. Let's see when this, yeah, this will be coming out before, uh, such and Latty. He has. He asked if I could give an 11 minute talk and I said, sure, yeah, I can give an 11 minute talk. I've got to figure something to talk about here. And he says, well, what if you talk about, uh, mental health?

[00:05:22] Travis Bader: And the outdoors and, uh, what all that means to you. So from my own selfish perspective, this is fantastic because I'm just going to be pumping you for information too, and looking at your perspective and I'll be using all of this to help create my talk, which in, Typical ADHD style. I have yet to begin.

[00:05:42] Travis Bader: I'll make 

[00:05:42] Matt Jenkins: sure I trademark everything I say before March 30th, and you'll be paying me for everything I say. I love it. Are you going to be there? No, I won't. I'll be back up in God's country and the Kootenai's not down in. This, uh, I don't know how to call the lower mainland anything positively and, uh, PG rated, but it's, it's a place.

[00:06:00] Matt Jenkins: It's a 

[00:06:00] Travis Bader: place. You know what, when you get outside it for a little bit, like I grew up in Surrey and I've heard all of the Surrey jokes and everyone talks about Surrey, what are you talking about? This place is fantastic. Surrey's the best, right? When I moved out of Surrey and I saw something a little different, I'm like, oh, Okay.

[00:06:17] Travis Bader: I get where they're coming from. I get where the jokes are coming from. Not that I'd disparage it in any way, but when you're in it. What is Surrey? Yeah. When you're in it, it's hard to see outside of it, right? It's, 

[00:06:28] Matt Jenkins: uh, I grew up in Langley and, um, you know, when, when I went over to Surrey, I just, you kind of get back to Langley, just feel dirty, you feel dirty and you've got to go up and take a shower.

[00:06:38] Matt Jenkins: I love it. But, uh, no, it's good. I'm, I, every time I had the opportunity to come back, uh, Moving out of the lower mainland was fantastic. Uh, it was a great opportunity and being able to move for, for the job was, it made things really easy, but I'd have to admit, uh, I was driving around Fort Langley the other night, uh, beautiful weather, no traffic and it was There is part of me that does miss living down here and it's days like those, okay, this is, this is nice and nice and nostalgic, but I'm not coming back anytime soon.

[00:07:06] Travis Bader: Yeah. There's something to be said for few less people, a little bit easier access to the outdoors or a lot easier access to the outdoors. And yeah, uh, you know, my head's clicking in that direction too. I mean, that would, um, we'll see, we'll see what, uh, what comes in time. Dude, these are nice this time of year.

[00:07:24] Travis Bader: Yeah, yes they are. So your background, you got into. You, I think you mentioned before, you're more of a gun guy than you are a hunter and everyone that has introduced you, you to me describes you as a hunter, right? 

[00:07:41] Matt Jenkins: I suppose that's the power of perceptions. Um, grew up, uh, in Virginia. Um, I tell everybody how I ended up in BC.

[00:07:48] Matt Jenkins: I just got lost on my way to Alaska. That's the short, that's me, uh, shortening that story, but, uh, grew up shooting. Um. You know, being that I grew up in the United States, it was shooting things like handguns and AK 47s and AR 15s. I actually had never touched a bolt action rifle until I moved to Canada.

[00:08:06] Matt Jenkins: Go figures. Yeah. Um, don't come from a family of hunters. Um, about 16 years old, got into hunting through my, my still best friend. Uh, his dad really took me under his wing and. I, from our first trip in, I guess that would have been September, September youth season of 2007, uh, the O'Klean and Sinker, everything around, everything from that point on really revolved around how do I do this and yeah, the rest is history, but I still do consider myself, uh, more, more well versed in the firearms realm than the hunting realm.

[00:08:40] Matt Jenkins: But again, perception is an interesting thing. What kind of a hunt was it? I was a mule deer hunt, um, up in, I guess it would have been the North end of region eight off the Okanogan connector. And I had no idea. I knew I was going two weeks before. So I'm buying hunting magazines and I'm like, Oh, you know, tips to shoot a white tail.

[00:08:55] Matt Jenkins: Okay, cool. Well, geez, a white tail and a mule deer, that's gotta be the same thing. If it works in the magazine, it's going to work where we're going. Hey, stupid, you're a different species for a reason. Sure, sure. Yeah. Uh, and then a couple of months later, did another hunt with, um, again with Dan and his dad and his little brother.

[00:09:09] Matt Jenkins: And, and we were lucky. We got, uh, Back to back success and, and was hooked. Um, what 

[00:09:16] Travis Bader: was it that hooked you? 

[00:09:19] Matt Jenkins: I always had an interest in it, you know, growing up in the States, the Sportsman's channel, there was 15 versions of wild TV down there and they all had hunting content. And I always thought, you know, I love being outdoors.

[00:09:29] Matt Jenkins: I love firearms. This is kind of seems like a good way to put it together. Although I, I, uh, it was interesting, even from a young age, thinking about hunting, I was hooked. When I looked at the guys in the tree stands and the ground bonds, I'm like, I don't think I can do this. Like, I'm, I'm too ADD. I'll be going stir crazy and a deer is going to walk in front of me and I'm going to have no idea it's there.

[00:09:46] Matt Jenkins: Cause I'm going to be too busy, you know, counting leaves on trees or something. And what did you find? Uh, I found that, uh, well we, we had it, honestly, we had it pretty cushy. We were in a camper in the back of the truck. We were cruising around on quads. It was a pretty, pretty cushy introduction to it. Um, but yeah, Yeah, the, the places hunting has taken me, the people it's introduced me to, it's second to none.

[00:10:08] Matt Jenkins: I'm very hobby heavy skiing, mountain biking, hunting, shooting. But, uh, if I had to strip all of those things away and be reduced to one passion, hunting would be obviously what reigned supreme. Getting into skiing and re introducing myself to mountain biking really was something essentially to pass the time between, you know, November or December in some cases.

[00:10:27] Matt Jenkins: And then, you Uh, September 

[00:10:29] Travis Bader: again. So you were out mountain biking today, weren't you? It was Steve. 

[00:10:32] Matt Jenkins: Yeah, I am physically abused. 

[00:10:35] Travis Bader: Well, that's his bread and butter, right? It is. 

[00:10:37] Matt Jenkins: And he, uh, he, he was, I was quick to point out to him this morning as I was cursing and swearing and sweating that he's been riding all winter and I haven't touched my bike in nine months, so I'll hang on to that little thing.

[00:10:47] Matt Jenkins: That I, you know, hopefully I'm not that bad all season, but it was, uh, it was awesome. And, uh, coming full circle back to Steve, he actually ran the mountain bike program when I was in high school. Uh, he was a teacher of mine. And the last time I rode the woodlot 19 years ago was with him and my best friend, Dan.

[00:11:05] Matt Jenkins: And then here we are. 19 years later, writing again. So it's life is funny. 

[00:11:10] Travis Bader: He mentions you or he alludes to you. Anyways, I don't think he used your name, but he talked about you in his Ted talk that he did. He did. Yep. Yeah. That was, that was a really good Ted talk. I was, uh, maybe I should talk with him about my little 11 minute speech.

[00:11:24] Travis Bader: I got to put together, but he did a damn good job on that. 

[00:11:26] Matt Jenkins: Phenomenal. I, um, I, you know, I, I look at the, the Ted talk and I remember talking to him prior, him asking me if he could use a kind of a very, uh, sort of an anonymized version of a connection with me. He did put my picture up there just without the name attached.

[00:11:40] Matt Jenkins: And I watching the final production, it's one thing to sit and have a back and forth conversation, but it's another thing to be standing in a box on a stage and have a, uh, basically turn your, what's in your head into a product, right. And have, you know, little to no prompting capture that audience. So I.

[00:11:59] Matt Jenkins: Pretty wild and yeah, it was very humbling to see that final product and how'd you feel a lot of gratitude, right? You know, it's um, I've had amazing connections with people my entire life and it's Phenomenal the impact that we can have on one another without you know The smallest gesture can mean so much to other folks and the fact that other people view me as having a phenomenal impact on them enough to use them on a Uh, Ted talk is beyond anything that I think I'm well could have done.

[00:12:30] Travis Bader: Isn't that funny how, how we can interact with people throughout our life and the little actions that we can make. And we don't even understand the impact that it's having on those around us, other through our example or through, uh, just like how I'm learning about you through Sean and through Steve and through other people or, uh, or directly, you know, I, I had, uh, uh, one person reach out and, um, he was telling me a little bit about what he does and, and, uh, I looked over any on his, I think it was on his Instagram feed.

[00:13:06] Travis Bader: I'm like, oh, that's kind of cool. He's got some neat mugs he's got, uh, and he puts out there and I'll pick one of these things up and he comes back and says, you're the first person to purchase a mug and he has no idea how these little things, uh, can impact someone is what he said to me. And I'm like, okay, that's cool.

[00:13:23] Travis Bader: That's interesting. You know, just taking the time to, to always be conscious of what we're doing. And I guess it's sort of a balancing act because you don't want to always be thinking, well, what are people thinking about me? Right. It's exhausting. Right. But in the same breath, you want to make sure you're always conducting yourself and comporting yourself in a way that you're not detracting from somebody's joy or their life.

[00:13:50] Travis Bader: Then you're hopefully, you know, Adding to their joy. 

[00:13:54] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. And then the way, you know, I look at situations is, is what can I do and what can I provide in terms of value to the connections I have, right. Whether it's, um, you know, a venture at work, right. What can I do to add value to this unit I'm working with, or this, this, this program that I'm involved in to what can I do to add value to the relationships I have with people, right.

[00:14:13] Matt Jenkins: Um, with friends and family, I don't know. I, sometimes I miss the mark by a mile, but, um, when, you Thinking in terms of that of yeah, you certainly want to add something you want to contribute You don't want to become you don't want to be a cost if you're a cost to something you're in some cases doing it wrong I mean there are some things where you can you go into a situation knowing that you are going to be the beneficiary of it But it certainly feels good to be you know Try to be the the person providing something to others and if it's a two way street then It just means that relationship or that, uh, connections beneficial all across the board.

[00:14:47] Travis Bader: Yeah. Yeah. You know, it's, it's one of these things that a giver will always find takers hanging around them, right. And you don't, and you have to guard yourself against that. You definitely don't want to find yourself in a position where you're being viewed as a taker. And quite often a giver will look at that and they'll try and reciprocate.

[00:15:03] Travis Bader: And like, you know, just last time when we recorded, I was out with a friend of mine. Now I went to school with his son. And I just spend more time with, with the father than I do with the son. And the son owns a number of restaurants throughout Vancouver. So we're going around, checking out a bunch of these different places and ask for Luigi poor house, Carlino's, um, like a bunch of Italian, he's Italian fellow.

[00:15:32] Travis Bader: And, uh, brings me to one of their places and the guy who's running the place comes up. She's like, Oh, this is this thing, rum baba. I make these myself in house. I want you to have it and ends up giving me this thing. And so I find something else to purchase and I basically pay for the price of the, uh, the, the Marambaba.

[00:15:50] Travis Bader: And here I'm thinking, you know, I don't want to be on the negative end of that, that exchange. And when we left there, um, My friend, he says, why'd you do that? Don't do that. Travis. He's trying to do something nice, right? And it looks bad on you. It looks bad on me. And so that's one of the areas where, where I have a difficult time navigating.

[00:16:14] Travis Bader: Cause I never want to be on the negative side of that. Um, I don't know. You like that. Is 

[00:16:18] Matt Jenkins: that, I, there, you know, when you know somebody well enough, um, there certainly is, you know, a back and forth of, you know, favors or knowledge and you're, you're, you have that sort of, you're not keeping track. You just, you want to, you want to help somebody, you know, that they have something that they can provide to you and knowledge or, you know, I'll let you, Steve and me, for example, right?

[00:16:36] Matt Jenkins: I, the amount of knowledge he's pulled from my brain on the hunting and the firearm realm, couldn't put a price on it. Meanwhile, he's been wrenched on my bike all week. And, you know, it's just one of those things. You surround yourself with people you can lean on. Then it It's what friends do for one another.

[00:16:51] Matt Jenkins: But if it's a connection that isn't as deep, then, you know, yeah, I feel compelled to pull my weight per se. 

[00:16:59] Travis Bader: So, you know, talking with Steve, I definitely get the sense that there's, um, uh, there's more of a emotional and kind of, even it's kind of spiritual connection that he's having with the outdoors and the hunting.

[00:17:11] Travis Bader: Yeah. That he's either, uh, grown on his own with your help or, but I get more of the sense it's something that you've assisted with in that process. 

[00:17:20] Matt Jenkins: I, I think that's, it's given me entirely too much credit. He, uh, yeah, Steve's a guy who again, uh, was a mentor of mine educationally and also doing a lot with the outdoor ed programs back when I was in high school.

[00:17:32] Matt Jenkins: And, uh, Certainly a fellow that I looked up to because, you know, he had all of his wilderness first days, he had done trips to the Arctic circle. He'd been, you know, on the ice roads up North, um, you know, led groups of kids and, and done a tremendous amount of experience in the back country. So all I did was kind of say, Hey, you know what you're doing.

[00:17:51] Matt Jenkins: Only difference is now is, is, you know, The purpose for you being in the outdoors is a little different, so here's how we're going to take the skills you have and apply them to something a little bit different. Um, and now there was some teaching along the way, I'm not going to tell you how many years it took him to actually complete it.

[00:18:07] Matt Jenkins: You know, shoot a grouse with a 22 from 10 yards away, but we'll let him sweat over that. Now that I put it out into the world, but, uh, yeah, for the most part, and you have somebody who, uh, is, is switched on, uh, knows what they're doing and the skills are highly transferable. I didn't do much. 

[00:18:24] Travis Bader: Just tell me about that process.

[00:18:25] Travis Bader: Cause so, okay. A friend of mine recently, he's like talking to me about a few different things. He's a, Very intelligent individual. He's like, do you read much Nietzsche? He says, I'm like, well, a bit, you know, I've read a bit. I want Montesquieu, right. Or Schopenhauer. I'm like, no, you really should. You really should.

[00:18:48] Travis Bader: Right. And, um, gives me some book recommendations and I said, well, do they come with pictures? They don't. And so, but, uh, Schopenhauer, um, by all accounts so far, what I'm reading, he seems to be, uh, Pretty critical about hunting. He makes a statement about hunting and he says, the satisfaction of hunting lies in the process of the chase and the exercise of skill rather than in the death of the animal.

[00:19:15] Travis Bader: In this respect, the true hunter is more interested in the pursuit itself than in the final result. 

[00:19:22] Matt Jenkins: Absolutely. I couldn't have, couldn't have put it any better than that. Um, the amount of years I tag soup, uh, or the amount of times when I'm out with somebody and I, I get with more satisfaction over, you know, helping them or assisting them to me, it doesn't matter.

[00:19:37] Matt Jenkins: Right. At the end of the day, we are successful. I don't care who pulls the trigger. That is not, it's not a thing for me. Right. Um, So again, to help, uh, to help with that process has been phenomenal. And you know, when I think back on the trips I've done all over BC, up North, the Kootenays, proximity to the lower mainland, some of the most, the stories, the memories and everything came from, you know, the people I'm with, the places I am rather than, you know, what we're taking physically, taking home from that trip or taking from that landscape, of course, tremendous bonus.

[00:20:09] Matt Jenkins: Uh, and, and the pride you have when you are successful in that trip, you can't replace it. Um, And that's where I think we, you know, as hunters who are comfortable having difficult conversations, it's really important for us. And if you've, if you don't hunt, it's really hard to understand because again, the classic adage of, well, how can you admire something if you're going to kill it?

[00:20:31] Matt Jenkins: Well, you know, obviously at face value, that seems like a very accurate statement, but. Really, when you get into talking with people who are passionate about it, it's sort of that's kind of the culmination of the effort you've put in the preparation, the physical preparation, you know, you can't just go walk up and down the hills.

[00:20:48] Matt Jenkins: You know, without prep, preparing your body, otherwise you're going to be a liability or at the very least you're going to be miserable. Yeah. Um, you know, where do you go, uh, access your, your, your kit, your equipment, um, finding those people who you can intrinsically trust, because there's a lots of times I've been hunting, I'm like, this is terrible.

[00:21:05] Matt Jenkins: This is a terrible experience and I don't want to be where I am. I want to be sitting on a beach somewhere. That's it. That's all. I don't want to be sitting on a beach. I hate the beach, but I want to be anywhere. What I am when I'm cold and I'm wet and I'm tired. And all I see above me is, is, uh, mountains and false summits.

[00:21:17] Matt Jenkins: And, uh, and then when you're successful, it just really puts into perspective, everything that you've done to get yourself to that point. And the amount of pride I take. Um, and the, how seriously I take the act of mentorship is, is colossal, right? If people are trusting me to give them those experiences or pass on those skills to them, it's not something that I take for granted because it's 2024.

[00:21:46] Matt Jenkins: The resources we have, you know, arguably in certain aspects, you can't replace a mentor to go out there with you, but let's be honest, right? Through your podcast, through, um, good, uh, folks instructing hunter safety courses through guys like Steve Fernella, there's so many ways you can learn these things.

[00:22:03] Matt Jenkins: Refine them on your own. Mm-Hmm. But, you know, uh, there's lots of ways you can do it without a lot of help. So the fact that people are still turning to me, um, is Yeah. It's something that I don't take for granted. No. 

[00:22:14] Travis Bader: Yeah. That, that mentorship program is something that is one of the most difficult pieces of the puzzle for Mm-Hmm.

[00:22:18] Travis Bader: Those people. Absolutely. I mean, there's only so many podcasts you can listen to. Only so many YouTube videos or books you can read. Mm-Hmm. . But to actually have somebody to kind of take you in and show you the ropes, to help you be successful, can it, it can be dejecting, it can be discouraging. Absolutely.

[00:22:35] Travis Bader: You go out there over and over again. For me, I've never made the animal, my prize. Just like in business, I don't make money. My prize, if I make money, my prize, I'm always going to be chasing it. If I make the enjoyment of what I'm doing and the pursuit of trying to provide excellence best of my ability or quality to the end user.

[00:23:00] Travis Bader: Money will be a natural by product of that. Just like in hunting, if I make the deepening of the connection, my connection with the natural environment, my end goal, the default of all of that will be, I'll start learning where the animals are and when they are and how they're moving and, and I will be successful in it.

[00:23:20] Travis Bader: Um, but. But I've never, ever left a hunt and been like, man, I wish I didn't go, right. I could see if I had picked the wrong group and maybe some, some teammates to go out with. And, uh, it was a wrong selection. Thankfully that's never happened to me. And Uh, time and effort goes into making sure we're very selective about those who we will go out.

[00:23:41] Travis Bader: Cause it'll push you, it'll, it'll push you mentally and physically. And if you're already kind of seeing some ragged edges before you even get out there, they'll, they'll show 

[00:23:52] Matt Jenkins: through. And not only that to the ethics piece, of course, you know, being law abiding, but, uh, you know, there's lots of ways where you can be compliant with, you know, the wildlife act, the firearms act and so forth, but you're skirting that gray area, making decisions that Are unethical, right?

[00:24:09] Matt Jenkins: Mm-Hmm. . Uh, and I've always taken a, I've always, yeah, I've always taken that pretty seriously. Um, realizing what's at stake. You know, every time it seems like every time the regulations come out, we're losing a bit. And not to go down that rabbit hole, 'cause that's a podcast in itself, , but, um. Always being mindful of projecting that good professional image of somebody who knows what they're doing, who's somebody truly appreciates what they're doing and somebody that can back up what they're doing with good points in a, in a conversation with people who have a different viewpoint about hunting.

[00:24:41] Matt Jenkins: It's important. And I, uh, there are people that I've hunted with who I've watched make decisions sometimes in front of me, or just sometimes through hearsay or, or, uh, stories from clients. Friends that I trust and I'm there, that is enough for me to say, Nope, I'm, I'm good. I'll go with somebody else. Right.

[00:24:57] Matt Jenkins: You're, you're not, my hunting with you is not worth me being associated with those behaviors. 

[00:25:02] Travis Bader: You know, it's, you're talking about gray areas and is there anyone really looking over my shoulder at the moment? I'm out in the woods, right? Is it, I don't know. What are the odds? Anything would happen, right? The second, that sort of thinking starts to creep in, um, in anybody, you've got an issue.

[00:25:25] Travis Bader: I think the best way to approach it is to mentally role play ahead of time, what you do in different circumstances. And so when you're presented with it, you've already got a framework that you can kind of work with. Yep. I mean, I like I'll set an alarm for a water fowl hunting when the alarm goes off, there's no more shots.

[00:25:43] Travis Bader: We'll hear shots half an hour to an hour after all of that, but there's a difference between being a hunter and being a poacher. Yes. And I know that if I were to take a shot after that. I wouldn't be feeling good about myself. I wouldn't want to tell my friends about, Hey, look at this, look at this animal I've harvested.

[00:26:04] Travis Bader: Or well, how could you, right? There's no story there, right? He, he just got to, yeah. And, and what's that worth to you, you got to live with yourself for the rest of the time. And at the very least there's that on top of that, then there's your reputation and criminal charges and seizures and all the other things that go with it.

[00:26:24] Travis Bader: So it's not worth 

[00:26:25] Matt Jenkins: it. Maybe for some folks looking for views on YouTube, but that's certainly not for me. 

[00:26:30] Travis Bader: Yeah. Wasn't there a couple of those things 

[00:26:32] Matt Jenkins: recently? Yes. So some sort of recent thing in my brain. I think that it's applicable to, but I can't remember who and where. 

[00:26:38] Travis Bader: Yeah. Yeah. No. And that's one of the things, you know, there's pressure, people feel pressure and they'll put it on themselves.

[00:26:44] Travis Bader: They want, they don't want to be, um, coming back is unsuccessful, but if, and I think that's where Renella kind of, you know, help hit the nail on the head. Um, and he tried to show the process, And the pursuit rather than the end result. Cause prior to this, like I've never been a big watch and hunting on TV type of person.

[00:27:07] Travis Bader: Uh, and in fact, when Rinella came out, I'd never even heard of him for the longest time. And people kept bringing his name up. I'm like, who is this Italian person they keep talking about, right? Meat 

[00:27:14] Matt Jenkins: eater was the gateway drug for me. No, it really, Oh yeah. Now you look at my hunt, my YouTube algorithm and it's, it's, it's a rabbit hole.

[00:27:20] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. That's my Saturday night. Not my Saturday and Sunday mornings. I work shift work, but per se, my, my weekend mornings off is spent with YouTube. Just. If I can't do it, it's always interesting to watch the stories that other people have and. Uh, you know, there's a lot of good content on there, but I'm pretty choosy in what I watch.

[00:27:36] Matt Jenkins: It's gotta be authentic. I don't like a lot of production value. I don't like, you know, the, you know, if you've got a list of sponsors a mile long and there's more product shots than hunting, I'm probably not interested, but, uh, yeah, the, my favorite episode of meat eater, um, Was one where nothing, you didn't, didn't shoot anything.

[00:27:53] Matt Jenkins: I'm fairly nostalgic. I like to go to the same places. I, it's really cool to reflect on memories. I've made hunting in places year after year. And, uh, that particular episode of Mediator, I think it was back in season five, you know, he's talking about how he's been in this, hunting the same basin with friends and family for, for years.

[00:28:07] Matt Jenkins: Decades. And so I, I kind of identified with it. Right. And I remember a friend of mine saying, well, that was so it was dumb. He didn't shoot anything. I'm like, that's kind of the point. 

[00:28:16] Travis Bader: Yeah. No, that's totally the point. And I think when people start connecting with that, they realize, you know, maybe there's something a little bit deeper to all of this.

[00:28:24] Travis Bader: Yep. Um, no, you know, you were talking about, uh, being mentored. And the people that you have mentored, what are you looking for when you're looking at somebody who wants to get mentored? Because there's a lot of people and they come out and they say, like, you'll see them on the forums or I'm looking for a mentor.

[00:28:40] Travis Bader: Can you tell me the best place to hunt? And, uh, can I just tag along with you in your honey hole? And, and, and they get ripped to shreds, right? So if somebody is listening to this and they're thinking about posting on these forums or introducing themselves to different groups, um, and Um, you know, like this morning I was, you know, I'll save that one.

[00:29:00] Travis Bader: You tell me, um, before my ADHD kicks in, what are you looking for in somebody to mentor? 

[00:29:06] Matt Jenkins: Uh, I'll, I'm, I'm selfish with my time and my knowledge to a certain extent. And, uh, as much as I like to share knowledge on the forums and share things in controlled environments, if I'm out in a situation where there's a lot of variables I can't control.

[00:29:19] Matt Jenkins: Like hunting, if you're not somebody that I know who has an aptitude to do the right thing, who has the ability to, um, you know, be safe and be ethical, probably not going to go out on a limb and mentor you in those field conditions, right? Uh, you want to go to the range, you want to have a conversation.

[00:29:40] Matt Jenkins: Absolutely. Right. Um, but if I'm actually going out there to do the thing with you, I, I'm, I'm very choosy and selective and I having that connection, um, is imperative. Right. 

[00:29:53] Travis Bader: Yeah. You know. So this morning I was out with my son and we were checking on nesting boxes. Yep. So I've never done that before.

[00:30:05] Travis Bader: There's a Instagram feed. It was pit water fowlers. You heard of them? 

[00:30:10] Matt Jenkins: Uh, I'm familiar with where like the pit river marsh is. I've never checked the nesting boxes and I'm not too familiar with their, their organization to be perfectly 

[00:30:17] Travis Bader: honest. Well, I'm, you know, I'm just. I've, I've waterfowl hunted, you know, ducks, geese, all the rest and, and, uh, but I've never participated in nesting boxes for like wood ducks and stuff.

[00:30:28] Travis Bader: So I thought, well, I'm seeing this thing on social media. They're looking for some help. All right, we'll get up. We'll try it out. To pit and met up with a group of people. Everyone's got the same interests. They all get the same sort of ideas. They've all got their, it was a chance for everyone to get together and talk about how their hunts were.

[00:30:45] Travis Bader: And, you know, if I was brand new to this, the amount of knowledge that I would just get in from going out and helping on one of these things without even asking for help, um, I would learn a heck of a lot. Absolutely. And, and I think if somebody is looking for a mentor, I would look at those sorts of things, you're fishing game clubs.

[00:31:02] Travis Bader: What can I do to help out at your, your game dinner? Right. That's not hunting, but you're going to make some connections. Um, okay. I'll get muddy and dirty and pull out poles and slog through in my waders and the. You got to work for it. 

[00:31:15] Matt Jenkins: Right. That's it. There you go. You know, there's a big difference. And I think that, uh, you know, I look a lot, a lot of the posts on, you know, uh, I try to stay off the hunting forums.

[00:31:23] Matt Jenkins: Now, um, I look at some of the posts I wrote 10 years ago and I'm like, you opinionated. 23 year old, shut up. Yeah. I thought the same thing. That's what I read about. Fair, fair and valid, fair and valid. We'll leave it at that. But, um, you know, there's a big difference between asking, asking for advice, right.

[00:31:40] Matt Jenkins: Or, um, but again, talking back to that idea of value, um, I think there's a lot of folks who are getting into hunting who truly don't appreciate the amount of effort that goes in. And, you know, through that mentorship equation, there's a big difference between, um, You know, forming kind of a, a back and forth, you know, Hey, this I'm now, I'm kind of developing somebody I want to hunt with.

[00:32:01] Matt Jenkins: Right. I'm mentoring you. It's because I want to be able to phone you and say, Hey, let's wake up at three o'clock in the morning and drive for three hours and hunt for six hours and then drive home and sleep for the next 18. Right. Um, it's not somebody that I want to be, you know, kind of leading to water per se.

[00:32:17] Travis Bader: Right. So here's some data. The basic dues, you got to work for it, put yourself out there, um, have some skin in the game. Don't always just be hand there with your hand out. But what would be some of the don'ts that, um, uh, a mentee could do? What are some things that would immediately turn them off from being mentored by yourself or 

[00:32:35] Matt Jenkins: anybody else?

[00:32:36] Matt Jenkins: If you start the conversation with, okay, like, where are we going? Can you send me some eye hunter pins? Probably not. Right. Um, I, uh, I'm fortunate in that, you know, living in the West Kootenays, there's so much outdoors at my disposal. I can drive 20 minutes in any direction and, and, you know, not every day, but have elk bugling back to calls.

[00:32:56] Matt Jenkins: Pretty rad, right? Considering the full days I would put in a day hunts, uh, going up to region eight, living in Langley. It's, it's pretty cool. Yeah. Um, so yeah, if I'm, Because we have so much at our disposal, uh, when I'm taking new folks out, or my, my wife and I's two good friends in Castlecar, they're at, we, they, they've gone all in, right.

[00:33:18] Matt Jenkins: You know, they're, they're looking at rifles to buy, they've got their core, they've got their pal, they're, they're really, um, I think trying to seize the opportunities we have with where we live. And it's cool that because of how much we do have around us, when I'm taking those two out, we're kind of learning together.

[00:33:34] Matt Jenkins: Right. A lot of the spots we went to this fall, I had never been or had been, but hadn't really invested in. So now I'm like, Hey, let's try spot A or B or C or D as I'm picking up on things. I can sort of, you know, explain what I'm looking at. And it's, it's, we're both learning together. So we're, we're, Sort of helping each other level up per se, right.

[00:33:52] Matt Jenkins: I'm gaining knowledge about a different area and they're just gaining knowledge about something entirely new. So it's, it's really cool. 

[00:33:59] Travis Bader: Have you ever had somebody go and burn one of your spots? Um. Take them to a place and then the next thing you know, all their buddies are coming out there too. 

[00:34:08] Matt Jenkins: Probably, but at the same time, Um, I'm, you know, I'm not going to share where I go on a podcast, right.

[00:34:15] Matt Jenkins: But I feel that there, if I'm sitting to somebody and you can have a conversation and you either know where you don't, okay, this, this person's, you know, they're, they're passionate, they've invested in things. Having a conversation with somebody like that, who's like minded and put similar effort in, I'm pretty cavalier with people.

[00:34:33] Matt Jenkins: Spots, because let's be honest, right? If, if I end up talking and I mentioned the name of a drainage or a road or whatever, and the guy goes, Oh, like, you know, all of a sudden we're both, again, we're both benefiting from that conversation. But again, if I can sense somebody is on the taking side of the conversation, then obviously there's going to be a lot less given up.

[00:34:51] Matt Jenkins: Right. 

[00:34:52] Travis Bader: So you're down here in the lower mainland for another course. Correct. What's that course? You started telling me about it. I was like, Oh no, no, no, sounds interesting. Let's save it. 

[00:35:03] Matt Jenkins: Um, yeah, so I'm, you mentioned already, I do carry a badge. Uh, I'm with your CMP second generation police officer, um, and through those family connections and friendly connections with the force, uh, starting my career, I knew I wanted to have a huge emphasis on wellness, right?

[00:35:20] Matt Jenkins: I wanted to, um, Be physically, mentally, mentally and emotionally well throughout my career, and I wanted to learn the skills to, um, pass on to my peers to make sure that they were all, you know, not on the same page because everybody's Perceives things differently, but, um, sort of lead by example, but then when I did have a peer that was struggling, I was able to, uh, try my best to, to give them a leg up right now.

[00:35:49] Matt Jenkins: I'm not being a clinician, but there's an incredible amount of. Uh, you can get through just peer support by relatability. So, uh, down and back in November, I had the, the pleasure of being on a course, um, which was what the RCMP calls the proactive support response team. The RCMP loves attack acronyms. So P CERT, and it is a new peer to peer model.

[00:36:11] Matt Jenkins: Um, we're, uh, Available 24 seven to respond to things such as an employee in crisis, uh, for suicide, uh, self harm intervention, post critical incident support, um, or dealing with prolonged exposure to any sort of potentially psychologically traumatic event, right? PPTE, I think is the other acronym, uh, that, that would, it's been floated around quite a bit lately.

[00:36:35] Matt Jenkins: So when, You are dealing with something, um, you can't just suck it up and move on, right? Um, it's, we as police officers are no different from anybody else. We take things home. We, we have to look after ourselves. Um, so by taking that course, the skills I learned, the knowledge I obtained with how to Be that peer who, you know, I can't fix you, right?

[00:37:02] Matt Jenkins: I can't remove the memory of a scene you've attended from your brain, but just to make those phone calls and make those connections or have those in person, um, sessions to talk about a traumatic event. There's a lot of power in that. And simply knowing that there's peers out there who are looking out for people when the old ways was to suck it up, find a way to deal with it.

[00:37:26] Matt Jenkins: That's probably unhealthy, very beneficial to have that training back in November. Um, And it's interesting because a lot of the things that I learned and, and the mandate and how we respond to those post critical incident or, or traumatic files is something that I was already doing fairly unofficially, right?

[00:37:42] Matt Jenkins: If I knew, uh, friends of mine, uh, Um, not even an area that I worked and had attended something that was unpleasant to say the least for me to pick up a phone call and say, Hey, I, you had to deal with something that I wouldn't want to have to deal with. How are you doing? Right. How is it affecting you?

[00:37:58] Matt Jenkins: Right. What's your plan for tomorrow? Really basic questions. Um, you know, would never, what was it like? What'd you see? What'd you smell? Those are not questions that are beneficial to somebody after they've just, you know, Experience something not so nice, but, um, and then having a conversation, right. And seeing where it went.

[00:38:17] Matt Jenkins: And, um, it's always tough, even with people, you know, at a cold call and try to have a conversation about an experience that they would probably choose to forget. Um, but it was always left with a huge sense of like, okay, you know, I've, if I was in that person's shoes, I would want to know that I had had that experience.

[00:38:36] Matt Jenkins: Um, I took some time off a couple years ago for my own mental health and the, the, the two people that phone me when they found out that I was taking time off, I will never forget that gesture and all it was was, Hey, I heard you're taking a bit of time off. Are you okay? And is there anything that I can do for you?

[00:38:53] Matt Jenkins: Um, what did you say? I said, uh, I said, whatever Mountie says. Yeah, I'm fine. That's right. Feeling inside, not expressing. Um, But overwhelmingly grateful for the phone call and there, these are people that I, you know, have been to all kinds of files with who I would trust implicitly. So the fact that they reached out means a lot and I never held it against the folks who didn't reach out either.

[00:39:16] Matt Jenkins: Um, that's not a thing, right there because the stigma still exists because there are people who maybe are not progressing in their own path to wellness for them to reach out. It certainly wouldn't more do more harm than good because it's always nice to know that people care. But yeah, I never held it against her.

[00:39:33] Matt Jenkins: I never kept score of who called and who didn't. I just know that it felt really good to know people were looking out for me. 

[00:39:39] Travis Bader: I got to wonder, um, and, and this probably would form some of the training you've done and we've gone through the delicate balance between, uh, asking too much or not asking enough.

[00:39:53] Travis Bader: Cause if you go to, if you're not reaching out and you're not asking, I mean, you're, There there's no impetus for an individual to at least say, or know that they're being cared for there's they've got support, but if you're reaching out and asking too much, could that not also have the same sort of effect of having to relive these things over and over again, as I just grew up.

[00:40:16] Travis Bader: I'm fine. I'm good. Right. 

[00:40:17] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. And, uh, you know, I, I always tread lightly and, and feel out the conversation because again, if, if you're having an acute psychological trauma response to something that is, that you will never forget, you don't know what your trigger is going to be six months, nine months down the road.

[00:40:32] Matt Jenkins: Um, and also vicarious trauma is a thing too, right? It's something that I was. I knew it was a thing, but I always felt that I had a pretty high threshold for, you know, having really frank conversations with friends who had been to files that I didn't go to and just talking shop essentially. Um, it's a tough balance because there's a lot of things I don't need to hear, right.

[00:40:54] Matt Jenkins: Even hearing about things that are, you know, are not nice to hear about, but you also don't want to cut that person off because. If they need to express it because they're, they're hurting, right? You don't want to stop them, but it's a very tough balance to strike in a group setting, you know, with that piece or unit, um, one of the foundational baselines for how that model is moving forward is, is that when you're doing your check in phone calls or sometimes in person geographically, uh, when, when appropriate.

[00:41:25] Matt Jenkins: And if you're doing an in person session with the team that went to, uh, Um, some sort of traumatic file, you know, the kind of the, one of the ground rules is, is that, okay, today we're going to get together, uh, we're going to talk about, um, you're going to acknowledge the event, you went to a, You know, an officer involved shooting, for example, at its worst case, right?

[00:41:46] Matt Jenkins: We're not going to talk about what you did. We're not going to get into the details, what you did, what you saw, what you smelled. Those are things that are better left to discuss with a, with a clinician. But what we are going to talk about is what your role was, right? Were you the first member on scene?

[00:42:00] Matt Jenkins: Were you physically involved? Were you the backup member? Were you, were you sitting in the office taking a statement and your radio is going off in your ear and you feel like you let your team down because you weren't there? That's a thing too, right? What was your role? How is it affecting you? And now, what have you found beneficial to move forward?

[00:42:18] Matt Jenkins: And being able to then also reel people in if they start going down the rabbit hole of, you know, the sights and smells and things like that, that can trigger somebody else. Again, if I'm the guy in the office who is just putting my duty belt on and my friends are in a fight for their lives, I don't need to know what was happening on scene.

[00:42:37] Matt Jenkins: Because that may just exacerbate my feeling of guilt because I wasn't out the door. Right. If I finished my coffee before I started my police car. Oh my gosh. Why did I do that? That there's just certain things you don't need to share. Hmm. Interesting. At some points. Right. I don't want to say car wash, but yeah, there's certain things better left for a different setting.

[00:42:59] Travis Bader: So, and you're mentioning, so physical, mental, emotional health. I would say out of the three, physical would probably be the most important. 

[00:43:11] Matt Jenkins: I don't think you can put a value on it. Um, obviously, yeah, physically you have to go home. You have to be physically alive to go home. That is important. But think about the damage, the dimensional and emotional.

[00:43:21] Matt Jenkins: Uh, trauma can cause, right? That can lead to the physical, right? That can lead to self harm or suicide, right? Um, and also too, the body doesn't know whether it's, uh, mental or physical trauma. If you have that trauma response, the body just knows trauma is trauma, right? Of course, there's the physical pain.

[00:43:40] Matt Jenkins: Your body knows that you're in a situation that invokes that fight or flight response, and the way your brain perceives it really doesn't differentiate. So the, the You know, the snowball effect of, um, what that mental and emotional trauma can do is that can lead to, you know, the physical stress responses, you know, uh, affecting sleep and weight gain and all those things can be a by product of that physical.

[00:44:04] Matt Jenkins: So, you know, I've sort of contradicted myself cause yeah, you have to go home physically, but to not deal with the other things would be a disservice to yourself and your peers. Well, 

[00:44:13] Travis Bader: and I, this is without any research, this is just my own layman's approach at looking at things, trying to mentally Think myself into a better mind space or, uh, mentally use that to help my emotional responses to whatever I might think.

[00:44:32] Travis Bader: Be it's pretty impossible for me. I don't know, maybe some people can do it, but, uh, for me getting up and going for a walk, going for a run, taking care of that physical thing, first and foremost, the other thing seemed to follow from there and allows me to be able to then deal with the mental and deal with the, uh, the emotional.

[00:44:54] Travis Bader: But I don't see it the other way around. I don't see myself trying to work on myself emotionally or mentally, and then, okay, now let's go out and I don't see the same, um, cost benefit as I do of let's get out and get that heart rate going. And all of a sudden things start to click a little bit better and allows me to do the other one.

[00:45:14] Travis Bader: So. I, I don't know if that's a thing or not, or if that's an ADHD or me thing. It kind 

[00:45:18] Matt Jenkins: of goes back to the power of perspective. And, you know, for example, I've had some injuries, uh, and one of the things that I find is that I have a tremendous amount of, uh, difficulty trusting my body, right? You know, even the prospect sometimes, luckily I've worked through a lot of these, uh, issues that I've sustained from some on duty injuries, some off duty injuries, and just the fact that I'm not 15 anymore.

[00:45:39] Matt Jenkins: Um, and, So at sometimes the prospect of I'm going to go for a run today. And then I start thinking about what if I get into that run and I start hurting, what if something creeps back up? It's a pretty crappy feeling and it really stalemated me a long time with fitness. I like being active and it's a part of that sort of personal wellbeing.

[00:45:57] Matt Jenkins: So to, you know, I'm physically, I'm healed, right? I've got, I have had great practitioners that have get and trainers and coaches that have gotten me back to the point where I, yes, I know I can physically trust my body. I'm no longer injured, but then having to work through the mental piece of, Hey, I'm You're not injured.

[00:46:13] Matt Jenkins: You need to start trusting your body and you need to start working back up and increasing that threshold of physical training To again learn to trust your body So it really feeds back and forth, but the mental piece for me has been huge over the last couple years But again, right if you've ever been through that then you can maybe identify it with it and if you haven't then it's a perspective that is just it's Not maybe not as common as the other way around 

[00:46:40] Travis Bader: So what do you find as an effective method for yourself dealing with that mental 

[00:46:43] Matt Jenkins: piece?

[00:46:44] Matt Jenkins: Um, having lots of good conversations with peers who are, are, are fit, who train, um, my physiotherapist has been phenomenal, right? Very wise, very smart guy. Um, does a lot of training on his own, right. And be able for him to kind of reinforce the fact that like, yeah, I'm, I'm working you and I'm treating you to keep the maintenance program, to keep me moving.

[00:47:06] Matt Jenkins: You're not injured, right? Go for it. And that helps the mental side. Yeah. It helps the mental side. If I go him and say, Hey, my knee hurts. Right. And he does some diagnostic checks and he does what he needs to do. And he says, no, man, if it hurts, it hurts. And we can try to figure out why, but diagnostically go for a run, see what happens.

[00:47:22] Matt Jenkins: And then I go for that run and I'm like, Hey. Cool. Yeah. And next thing you know, the next day I'm out and I'm running again, or I'm wrecking or, or whatever. So it, yeah, they really do kind of feed off one another. And then again, uh, maybe, you know, the knee hurts again or something else tweaks. And next thing you know, I'm back to that place of, okay, the physical pain is gone, but I feel like I don't want to test the waters.

[00:47:47] Travis Bader: I'm still toying with this, this idea of ignorance is bliss. Um, I mean, I, It's like for the longest time, I had no idea that what I put in my body, what I ate had an effect on how I felt afterwards. I would just eat and maybe I felt a certain way, like the two things just didn't correlate to me for whatever reason, or like, you know, some, my wife's a chef and she's got a fantastic palate and I'm eating stuff like, oh, this is great.

[00:48:17] Travis Bader: She's like, I don't know, don't you taste? And she picks up all these little things. And all of a sudden I'm thinking about, I'm Yeah. Okay. I recognize this now and now it doesn't taste so great anymore. Right. Same thing with physical on my body. If I, I don't know, I I've got the ability. I just turned my head off when I'm hurting in the, in the body, unless it gets really bad and my body stops working.

[00:48:38] Travis Bader: And, um, and I, I don't know if that's a good thing, I don't know if it's a bad thing, but the same thing for mental health, like. If there's people around you that are like, oh my God, what a terrible situation you're just in. And I, I don't know how you're able to go through this and they're reinforcing all of these, all of their perceptions and negativities about it.

[00:49:01] Travis Bader: And maybe you're like, I never thought of it that way. I never tasted those flavors, right? Um, I'm, I'm still playing around with this, this whole idea of ignorance is maybe bliss. 

[00:49:13] Matt Jenkins: And to a certain extent, you're absolutely bang on. Uh, and again, another one of the things that, uh, is in that, um, piece or bottle when we're phoning and checking in, you're, you're acknowledging that event, but you also want to acknowledge that whatever, whatever, whatever Huge range of feelings or emotions that person may or may not, very importantly, may not be feeling.

[00:49:32] Matt Jenkins: That's okay. If I'm phoning you to check in and you say, Hey, you know what? Yeah, it wasn't great, but I feel fine, right? This isn't the first time I've been through this or I have my healthy coping habits. I have my friends, I have my family, whatever that they have, to, to be okay, then, then they're okay.

[00:49:49] Matt Jenkins: Right. And you almost want to give them a high five because you're like, awesome. Great. If things change, of course we, we should revisit this, but I don't want to, we, we can't be assuming that people should be feeling a certain way, or we shouldn't be assuming that everybody's going to react the same to something traumatic.

[00:50:06] Matt Jenkins: You know, there's, and. We all kind of have our thing. There's certain types of files that may affect me more than my peer. And there's certain things that, you know, vice versa, right? So we just have to acknowledge the, the range of emotions. But then the other important thing with that too, is, is that if you get used to somebody from a peer support unit calling you after everything that may be psychologically triggering, it's another step in reducing that stigma.

[00:50:30] Matt Jenkins: Because if you're like, Oh, I went to X or Y or Z, I know somebody from. Um, uh, a peer to peer team is going to be reaching out. You become, you expect those phone calls. Um, if you don't need any supports, then great. Right. Uh, if things change, then you know where to find us. But then maybe on the 10th file you've been to, and this is going to be the 10th check in you're going to get either in person or over the phone.

[00:50:52] Matt Jenkins: Maybe that's the time you do need 

[00:50:53] Travis Bader: support. Maybe you're looking forward to it. Like, when are they going to call? When are they going to call? When are they going to 

[00:50:57] Matt Jenkins: call? This is bothering me and I don't know what I have available for help. Right. So the fact that you don't have to look for those answers, you don't have to feel guilty for asking for support.

[00:51:08] Matt Jenkins: I've been to files where, you know, you get back to the detachment, like, all right, how's everybody doing? Is anybody need a debrief? And you kind of look at it around the room.

[00:51:18] Travis Bader: No one else 

[00:51:19] Matt Jenkins: wants one. I'm putting my hand back down. Right. And so just, if you know that those things are in place, you don't have to be the one when you are having a, A terrible day, for lack of a better way to put it. You don't have to be the one to put yourself out there. Right. Because even among trusted peers, it is a tough thing to do.

[00:51:38] Travis Bader: So if we can recognize, and you said that, you know, typical Mountie thing, I'm fine. Right. I'd say that's typical in a lot 

[00:51:46] Matt Jenkins: of groups, right? Not just Mounties. We didn't, we didn't patent the term. 

[00:51:50] Travis Bader: Um, if we can recognize. That very often people are just going to say, I'm fine. No, things are good. Right. All right.

[00:52:00] Travis Bader: You guys receive training on like nonverbal paraverbal type cues that you might be able to pick up on that indicators that maybe the person isn't fine. 

[00:52:10] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. I mean, um, Just going back to our training, even at depo, right? When you're as green as it gets and you're wearing your stupid little blue cadet epaulettes at Regina, freezing when it's minus 85, body language is huge.

[00:52:23] Matt Jenkins: And again, this isn't unique to policing, right? If you've, if you're, if you're, if you like interacting with people physically through conversation or even if it watched a movie ever in your life, the things that can be betrayed silently are huge, but we still can't force people, right? Like, you know, if I, well, yeah, I'm fine.

[00:52:40] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. I'm good. Right. To, to, to proak and to prod, all I'm going to do is probably annoy that person. Right. Um, so that's when you have to kind of shift into like, okay, you know, are they fine? Well, probably not. Right. But all I have to do is trust that. If I say, okay, hey, you know what? I'm happy to hear you're fine.

[00:53:00] Matt Jenkins: Um, I'm going to send you an email and it's going to have all your, your benefits, your access to psychological support. I'm going to pass off our email proxy and our phone number should you need to reach back out. Um, and I just want to acknowledge the fact that it's okay to be fine. You don't have to feel anything after this and just reinforce that.

[00:53:17] Matt Jenkins: However, their feelings, okay, even if they're not being honest and also too, with that stigma still existing, it might take some time and it's entirely possible that they don't know what they're feeling. Right. You're upside down and backwards and you're like, what did I just see? What did I just do? I don't know what.

[00:53:35] Matt Jenkins: What, 

[00:53:37] Travis Bader: how am I, yeah, how do you process it? You know, in line with the whole ignorance is bliss thinking that, uh, I've been toying around. I also look at, uh, societal perception. I think a lot of times, uh, people can have psychological and mental issues based on how they feel others around them are perceiving it or the societal, I think you, I mean, you You think of the, uh, the age old Vietnam veterans coming back and shell shock and PTSD and all the things that were just kind of new at the time, or at least new terms, um, they weren't being greeted back with hugs and high fives, right?

[00:54:18] Travis Bader: They weren't being greeted back as tragic. Because society is looking at any, all of a sudden, all these things that these people left to do, that they felt they're doing their best and risking their lives in order to help and do the good thing. And they're coming back and everyone's kind of turning their back on them.

[00:54:34] Travis Bader: I think that may have a far more. Uh, detrimental psychological, uh, consequence than, than the actual event itself, because then you start thinking about the event and start ruminating on it and going back through it, and maybe I should have done things differently as opposed to people that could have been through the same situation or were welcome back as heroes.

[00:54:58] Travis Bader: And thank you so much. And it was terrible, but it needed to be done. I think the, the whole societal perspective is, uh, plays a very big role 

[00:55:07] Matt Jenkins: in this. You know, I, I had a, I, every time I'm down and I have some free time, uh, I, I try to always get into my old high school, um, and just, you know, go to, you know, Steve's classroom where he has kids and say, Hey, I'm here, ask me some questions, right?

[00:55:22] Matt Jenkins: Or don't, I don't really care. I'm just happy to go be that sort of community presence. And I did it in at home as well, being the school liaison for high school for, uh, just about five years. And I had interaction with a couple, uh, students yesterday and they had, Great questions. Right. Cause you know, they were asking me, you know, how do you deal with what you see on the job?

[00:55:41] Matt Jenkins: And I said, man, I'm just a human. I'm just a guy just like you. I'm not putting this uniform on doesn't remove my empathy or my sense to feel. Right. Um, and I thought it would give a couple of really mature questions for coming from some high school kids, essentially of, you know, how do you deal with what you've seen?

[00:56:00] Matt Jenkins: How do you deal with what you're done? Right. Have you had certain types of interactions with people and being able to say like, yeah, I have. And it was not great, but You know what? These are my supports. And more importantly, here's how you can apply these same things to your life, right? Just because I'm a police officer doesn't mean that you can't apply the things that I do to when you have a bad day at school, because a bad day is a bad day, right?

[00:56:23] Matt Jenkins: Some are worse than others, but who am I to judge what they're feeling? So, you know, talking about those, you know, things that I do, staying hobby heavy, being physically active, having an amazing spouse, who's, who's my biggest fan and supporter, having friends that I can talk to, um, who aren't in law enforcement is great.

[00:56:41] Matt Jenkins: And if they have, If they can apply those things to any aspect of their life or future careers, then hopefully that's a nugget that I've given them that they can carry forward. Yeah. 

[00:56:51] Travis Bader: Putting the uniform on doesn't make you superhuman in the same way we all learned as kids, wearing a cape doesn't mean you can 

[00:56:57] Matt Jenkins: fly.

[00:56:58] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. Right. It was probably a shattered roof or two that seen kids that learned that the hard way. Um, and, uh, but even too, as, um, you know, You know, peer to peer, right? I think that we,

[00:57:13] Matt Jenkins: when we're, um, interacting with folks after an event, um, You know, we need to just be completely judgment free again, what they're feeling, what they're not feeling. And that it's interesting. You know, you, you'd asked me, this is where the ADD brain of mine came in. Cause you asked me what I was just down for now, and I was talking about something I did in November, but trust me, there's a connection.

[00:57:32] Matt Jenkins: Uh, so the course I was just doing last week, um, Was what we call the national reintegration program. And I want to preface this by saying, um, proactive support response team, national reintegration. I can't take any credit for anything because I was a candidate in these courses, right? People way smarter with way more experience than me have developed these things.

[00:57:51] Matt Jenkins: All I've done is be on the winning end of learning from these people to help my people. Right. Which is everybody in policing is one of your people, right? And every time something tragic happens, you're reminded that just because you didn't know somebody doesn't mean they're not one of your people. So, you know, to have that, um, that, that piece or piece to be able to, um, see what your peers need after a critical incident in that, that, um, imminent stage.

[00:58:17] Matt Jenkins: But then too, with the reintegration program now, um, Employees who have been off work, uh, whether it's from a critical incident, whether it's from, um, any sort of suspension, whether it's from even a matter of pat leave, if they're having some anxiety about getting into the workplace to have this really open ended program to be like, what do you need from peers to make you more comfortable back at the workplace?

[00:58:41] Matt Jenkins: Do you want to go to the range? Do you want to stand outside the range and hear a gun going off? And then maybe you get a little closer and then maybe you stand next to me when I shoot. So you're re acclimated to that sound. Let's go to the range, right? Are you having anxiety over body image because you went off and you've gained weight?

[00:58:55] Matt Jenkins: Let me order your new duty belt for you. Um, if you've lost faith in your team and the organization, let's do something team building, let's, let's go to an escape room, right? You mentioned that. Anything, anything that you need, it, it, it was a phenomenal program and putting that affected member first when we're surrounded by red tape in a, in any, Large organization.

[00:59:20] Matt Jenkins: It was a really a breath of fresh air. And again, the more we're learning last week, the more I'm thinking of Friends and partners and peers that I've had that I'm like what an absolute Tragedy that people that I know in respect to are now retired Could this have prevented them from retiring if they're done with policing they're done with policing But so many people who could benefit from things like this To put them first in the organization to get them back to work to look at them as a person and not a tool.

[00:59:52] Matt Jenkins: To empower them to get back to what they hopefully still like to do. 

[00:59:58] Travis Bader: And this might be a two part thing, but you mentioned before, one of the tools that you use is to be hobby heavy. Oh yeah. What do you mean by that? 

[01:00:06] Matt Jenkins: Um, yeah, so, um, My personal identity of Matt is so much more important to me than Constable Jenkins.

[01:00:17] Matt Jenkins: I even just kind of cringe whenever somebody calls me that. I always introduce myself as Matt, just about 90 percent of the time. Um, I love what I do. Uh, and Let's make no mistake. I love what I do. I want to do anything else and I've had some amazing opportunities with some amazing people. But at some point I'm going to hand that badge and that gun in, and I'm going to walk out a door and it's going to be done.

[01:00:42] Matt Jenkins: Right. And somebody, hopefully we've got our, uh, resource levels up a little bit. So hopefully there's somebody taking my place the day I walk out that door at the end of my career and that organization, the gears are going to keep turning. Right. Right. So what I'm doing now to preserve my personal identity through being hobby heavy and having true passions is a very important investment in myself.

[01:01:06] Matt Jenkins: Um, uh, a fella who I worked with early in my career, who I have a tremendous amount of respect for, he actually took the core examiner course from you. Um, he told me Was this 

[01:01:18] Travis Bader: just recently? A year ago. Here you go. Okay. Yeah. I ran a class of new examiners through a couple of 

[01:01:24] Matt Jenkins: months ago. Oh, it would have been longer than that.

[01:01:26] Matt Jenkins: I want to say within the last 18 months, probably within a year and 18 months ago. Um, he'll remain nameless, but I hope that, you know, that when I'm sharing, I hope, I hope he hears it and I hope he gets, it puts a smile on his face. Cause again, the impact he's had on me is huge. And he says, you know, There's a lot of similarities between you and I, you like to shoot, you like to train, you are so keen on learning everything that this job has to give.

[01:01:49] Matt Jenkins: He says, but Hey, here's another piece of commonality. We both love hunting. I was a guide. I guided for years. All I do now, the closest thing I do to hunting anymore, and the closest I've done to hunting in years is shooting animals on the side of the road when they've been hit by a car. Don't be me. Fight for your hobbies and fight for your friends who are not in this organization, because when that day comes that you have a terrible day and you need to take some time away, or you're floundering a little bit, you need to have that identity and those connections because that will reinforce that there's more to you than the uniform you wear.

[01:02:26] Travis Bader: That makes a hell of a lot of sense. Yep. See, when I first looked at that being hobby heavy. My mind originally went to a hobby that is going to be tied in with some sort of, uh, social aspect, social aspect outside of perhaps what you're doing, but it doesn't necessarily have to have that social 

[01:02:44] Matt Jenkins: aspect.

[01:02:45] Matt Jenkins: It certainly helps, you know, going to, uh, Red mountain and riding the chairlift in the singles line all day. I'm skiing. So I'm having fun, but I, uh, anything you do with, with, with close friends is 10 times what it is by 

[01:02:57] Travis Bader: yourself. You see that Harvard study, the 80 year study where they, uh, log people from different, um, regions, different ethnic backgrounds, different, uh, nationalities, different genders, right.

[01:03:10] Travis Bader: And they try and get this, uh, It's the longest study on happiness that's ever been done. 

[01:03:16] Matt Jenkins: I haven't, I'd be interested to see it though. 

[01:03:18] Travis Bader: Okay. The end result of that was the number one predictor for happiness in people across the entire spectrum with strong social connections. Yeah, I could see it. Yeah. And it boils down to how integrated are you with other people?

[01:03:38] Travis Bader: And do they have your back? Do you have their back or your relationships, just likes and hearts and thumbs up on, on Instagram, right? Or are they sitting down face to face and having some real conversations? That's your number one predictor. Are you able to have strong social connections? And I'm reading this study and it's got a comment section and the huge number of people that say.

[01:04:03] Travis Bader: I wish I had a connection. I wish I had somebody else I could reach out to. So many people. I don't have a good friend that I can, I can talk 

[01:04:11] Matt Jenkins: to. It's, it's sad to hear, right? I, and I, my friends have made me who I am. Um, you know, I've got incredible friends. I don't feel worthy of their friendship most days and I wouldn't trade them for it.

[01:04:25] Matt Jenkins: And it's my best group of friends came from high school. Um, my, I met my wife in grade nine and now most of her friends are now married to most of my friends. So it's, it's unique, but, uh, yeah, the fact that, you know, like I said, 19 years ago was the last time I rode the woodlot in Maple Ridge with my best friend, Dan and Steve, who I'm staying with Dan this weekend.

[01:04:47] Matt Jenkins: We still hunt together and he's still my best friend is, is awesome. And I wouldn't trade that for anything. Um, Not to discount the friends I've made through work because I have incredible peers and there are people that have truly turned into lifelong friends that started with policing. Um, but yeah, I just, I cherish the, those old friendships are irreplaceable.

[01:05:08] Travis Bader: When you hunt, do you typically solo hunt or are you hunting with others? 

[01:05:12] Matt Jenkins: Hunting with others. Um, size of the group. Uh, it varies, you know, like when we go on our, our almost annual elk trip, it could be eight, 10 guys, but we're not all hunting together because. Right. I mean, it's something to be said for hounding, sounding like a herd of elk, but it's not productive.

[01:05:28] Matt Jenkins: Right. Uh, kind of my tagline is when I'm hunting alone, it's for participation points. It's me looking at a K it's a nice day. I only have, how many more Septembers do I have in me? Lots, but not a lot at the same time. Right. Um, I just need to go do something, right? I need to go drive up a road, hopefully not come nose to nose with a grizzly bear.

[01:05:47] Matt Jenkins: And if I see or hear critters, great. But if not, I can watch YouTube for the other 11 months out of the year this month. I need to get after it. Right. But my, I'm doing it for the sake of doing it. But again, when you're sharing that experience with your friends, again, like we've talked about a couple of times already, that's truly what makes that experience more special.

[01:06:06] Matt Jenkins: Right. And again, my desire to go skiing and mountain biking alone, the same thing. I'm not going to pass up a nice day when you're hooting and hollering down a trail with friends like we were this morning. It's just smile. My face is authentic, right? You can't replicate it. So 

[01:06:23] Travis Bader: the positive mental health aspects that you get from being in the outdoors or from hunting, where is that derived from for you?

[01:06:35] Matt Jenkins: Just doing something that I have a tremendous amount of passion for. Right. Um, Um, and passion at the most basic level of just out there learning, being present. Um, I think that's why hunting is one of the reasons, there's a million reasons, but one of the reasons why I do appreciate it is, is that, uh, it forces me to be present and it's interesting hunting with folks.

[01:06:55] Matt Jenkins: Cause, uh, again, being ADD and having my brain doing 90 things at once, people have said like, you know, they watch me when I'm walking through the woods. I slowly, I start hunting and I slowly just end up walking as I start thinking about Everything else, but actually hunting and next thing you know, I'm trampling around, not being quiet, not looking around.

[01:07:16] Matt Jenkins: And then I just like snap myself back. Like, Hey, dummy. We're here for a reason. It's not to go for a walk, right? Let's be present. Let's, let's look and, and have that just be present. What style 

[01:07:27] Travis Bader: of hunting do you typically, uh, find yourself defaulting to? I know some people love to still hunt and some people just love to lay up.

[01:07:33] Travis Bader: And, uh, what do you find? Some people just drive the logging roads, right? And not, not looking down on or up to any of these, but everyone's got their style. What, what do you find is most effective for you? And then what do you find is, uh, most meaningful 

[01:07:46] Matt Jenkins: for you? Um, The harder you work, the more, the more you feel like you've earned what you have come home with or not, even if it's just a memory, you're still coming home for something.

[01:07:57] Matt Jenkins: Uh, there's a time and a place for everything. Um, my in laws have a cabin up in, uh, 330. So that'd be the Clinton Loon, uh, Loon Lake Kashkuk area. And a lot of times hunting there is driving because the terrain is. In my opinion, obviously this isn't fact more productive just to see a lot of ground, right?

[01:08:17] Matt Jenkins: Sure. Um, it, you had some fires, you've had a lot of hunting pressure. Um, so for, for, to me, walk through the woods, walking through the woods and rolling terrain, that's when I get bored and my brain wanders. Um, as opposed to, again, driving and covering ground. Mm-hmm. It can't be more productive. But I also get terribly bored of that.

[01:08:35] Matt Jenkins: Two or three days in, I'm like, I don't want to sit in the driver's seat anymore. Um, I love mountain hunting, uh, which is really funny because my first couple of years of hunting, when I was still, uh, let's say building some grit, the last thing I wanted to do was go uphill. I'm like, you're not dragging me up that hill, the more colorful expletives in there.

[01:08:54] Matt Jenkins: But there's a story that still hangs over my head that I will never, will never be forgotten among certain circles about the first time on my first elk hunt. Okay. Let's hear it. All right. Dragging me up a hill was a difficult task. 

[01:09:09] Travis Bader: Kicking and screaming 

[01:09:09] Matt Jenkins: the entire way. Yeah, not quite. Not quite. I was, I was 19 years old.

[01:09:13] Matt Jenkins: So I, yeah, no, I, you, no, not quite kicking and screaming, but I wasn't happy about it. I didn't know what I was getting into. Um, and you know, now. It's not to say that if you're not physically exerting yourself, it's not worth doing. That's not the point I'm making at all. Because there's a lot of people who physically can't hunt that way.

[01:09:32] Matt Jenkins: And for me to discredit their experiences would be incredibly selfish and just But, uh, you know, back in November, um, had, you know, a weekend away. I was down here for that course. We left and we went up, uh, drove up in the interior for four or five hours. We hunted all day on Saturday and Sunday morning and drove home.

[01:09:53] Matt Jenkins: And all we did was just find the nastiest animal. You know, nastiest places to hike into. And it's what we did and I loved every second of it. Right. Um, from a productivity standpoint, going to places that other people aren't willing to go means you're probably going to see more critters too, but the places you end up when you're suffering and dying and you're going to pill, and then you look around and you're like, Oh, Yeah, this view is worth it.

[01:10:18] Matt Jenkins: And the story of course is, is something special. 

[01:10:21] Travis Bader: No, I remember years ago, I was probably griping about something, a friend of mine, who's offered a lot of business advice over the years, he's run a lot of very successful businesses. He just looks at me and laughs. He says, Travis, one thing I've learned in my life is.

[01:10:39] Travis Bader: Is that nothing that I've received that I can deem as worthwhile has ever come easy. And I think that just kind of sums it up for me. It doesn't necessarily mean physically exerting. But without effort, you don't have that same reward. 

[01:10:56] Matt Jenkins: No, you don't feel like you've earned it. Yeah. I don't anyways. I agree.

[01:11:00] Matt Jenkins: That's not to be said that I'm always, I'm not going to pass up an easy opportunity if it presents itself sometimes from driving on the road and there's a legal elk there, then I'm not going to have to sweat and cry about to get to, um, don't tempt me with a good time. But at the same time, uh, you know, I'm I, I've said to that experience would be a little bit lacking too, right?

[01:11:21] Matt Jenkins: Gonna take it if it comes up, but, uh, you know, when I look at the effort I put in, in other areas and come out unsuccessful, I guess it would be kind of ironic of all of a sudden I see something that I can't pass up standing in the middle of the road, but, uh, it's never what I count on and it's never what I'm looking for.

[01:11:36] Matt Jenkins: Right. Where'd you get that hat? So, uh, my, uh, trainer, she ran a gym in the West Kootenays. Um, her, uh, partner is now starting to make some hunting content. Uh, I'm a sucker for supporting local and, um, He said, Hey, you want a hat? I'm like, sure, I'll wear it. So here we are. So he's, uh, no official affiliation, uh, wearing it, isn't a plug.

[01:12:01] Matt Jenkins: It's just because it was the hat that was in the car and, uh, he's got horses and he, you know, basically wants to document some hunts and do it from the lens of between the ears of a horse and also being BC resident hunter doing a DIY, because I don't know about you, but I don't personally know many, uh, Resident hunters who are completely self sufficient with horses without, again, using somebody else.

[01:12:24] Matt Jenkins: I'm really looking forward to seeing what he comes up with. Um, and again, back to kind of the mentorship piece, I was able to take, um, um, me and, and her partner, Brad to the range. And, you know, Brad says, I've been hunting forever, but I've never been really much of a shooter. Um, man, I just did her core last year.

[01:12:41] Matt Jenkins: She's just got her pal. She got a Tikka for Christmas. And I said, cool, let's go to the range, right? Let's kind of get you set up for success. And when you shoot long enough, you just, You learn a thing or two along the way. So to be able to go to the range with them, I had a ton of fun and we spent a couple hours and went from, you know, here's how you set your rifle in sandbags and here's how you position yourself behind the gun to watching men hit steel consistently at 300 yards away, which some people are like, well, that's chip shot.

[01:13:10] Matt Jenkins: But remember where you started from. Even a hundred yards is a long way at times. Right. So pretty cool. Right. So that's Forged in the Wild. Yeah, Forged in the Wild. That's Brad's, uh, um, Brad's, I guess you could say side hustle, passion project, however you want to put it. Cause 

[01:13:25] Travis Bader: I've seen that popping around a little bit and I just, uh, figured I'd get a little backstory.

[01:13:29] Travis Bader: I figured you were wearing it for a reason. No, 

[01:13:31] Matt Jenkins: genuinely, no, it was either that or the faded RCMP hat that's sitting on my dashboard and we'll leave that one in the car. 

[01:13:37] Travis Bader: Yeah. Yeah. It's like that joke, I had a guy in the class years ago, I remember I was teaching and I like to start every course off with introductions, right?

[01:13:46] Travis Bader: I want to see a person's background. I want to get to know them. What's their name? Why are you taking this course? What kind of experience do you have in this field, right? And I do that for two reasons. Number one, it gives me an idea. If I've got a class full of experts in there, I'm not going to be teaching a course down here and vice versa.

[01:14:02] Travis Bader: If everyone's brand new, then it allows me to gauge it, but it also provides an opportunity for everybody in the class to have the spotlight put on them instead of being in there with their arms crossed and sitting back in their chair and looking up and all right, instructor, how are you going to impress me?

[01:14:18] Travis Bader: Okay. It, it draws them in and it creates more of a, um, an interactive environment right off the bat. Anyways, I asked this guy and first thing he says, well, you know, my name is so and so, and I'm a firefighter and then something else. And I say, well, you know how you can tell a firefighter, right? And. All of a sudden his face just changes.

[01:14:39] Travis Bader: Just 

[01:14:39] Matt Jenkins: like a vegan and a crossfitter. 

[01:14:42] Travis Bader: And his face changes and the class is like, how? I'm like, oh, don't worry about it. 

[01:14:46] Matt Jenkins: Yeah, you missed the 

[01:14:47] Travis Bader: joke. But the punchline on the joke, how can you fire, how can you tell a person is a firefighter? Don't worry. They'll tell you. Yeah. We're in the RCMP cap in here. How can you tell your RCMP?

[01:14:56] Travis Bader: Oh, don't worry. You got the kit, he'll tell you. But, um, yeah, probably a good call. Cool looking cap. 

[01:15:02] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. Thank you. I, again, I'm, if, uh, if it wasn't cool, I wouldn't wear it. So it's, uh, it was an unintentional plug and I, I I'm, I'm looking forward to suiting what he comes up with. 

[01:15:12] Travis Bader: Is there anything else that we should be talking 

[01:15:14] Matt Jenkins: about?

[01:15:15] Matt Jenkins: No, talk about core instruction a little bit, that journey for me. 

[01:15:19] Travis Bader: Yeah. Okay. Let's hear that one. Cause I remember when he became a core instructor, because I saw you all over, I never met Jeff, but you had your name as your, uh, as your handle on the different forums. Yeah. And, um, you're still up there, not very incognito in your name change, by the way.

[01:15:38] Travis Bader: That's what it is. Um, Is what it is. But I remember, man, I was like, who is this guy and look at the amount of passion that he has. I mean, so passionate. And, uh, I remember that was the one thing that struck me when I saw it over and over again, going through there really has a lot of heart in this, what he does.

[01:15:57] Travis Bader: So tell me about your, your journey through. As a 

[01:15:59] Matt Jenkins: core instructor, it was fairly organic. I didn't even seek it out. To be honest with you. I, uh, uh, did my courses from a fella named Ken Archibald out of Colorado. I lived in Langley and took his courses solely as a matter of proximity. Right. Um, so. And, uh, kind of fast forward a little bit after that, I worked at Wholesale Sports, um, ended up, you know, migrating behind the hunting counter, running the hunting section.

[01:16:25] Matt Jenkins: And I remember Ken had become a customer, he'd be buying, come and buying stuff for him. He'd bring students in and, and, you know, sort of, uh, you know, walk them through purchasing a gun, which is awesome because how intimidating it can be to be on the other side of that counter and really not knowing much and.

[01:16:40] Matt Jenkins: And, you know, wanting to get the best product to, to get you set up. And, you know, at some point he says, you know, like I've, I've really come to respect your opinion and bring here. And I come in to see you and I tell people coming to, to see you, um, the way you provide knowledge to people across a gun counter, I think you could do the same in the classroom.

[01:16:59] Matt Jenkins: Would you ever thought about being a core examiner? Well, no, fast forward again, there it was in, uh, April of, 2013, uh, 22 years old, had no business getting my core instructor number, but there I was and, um, started working with Kent, started teaching the course for him. And what first started with essentially following his curriculum, right?

[01:17:20] Matt Jenkins: Fantastic teacher, tons of passion. Um, and then. Agreed to disagree on certain things, but his heart was always in the right place and the jokes, the laughs, the organic connection we had with the students. I always really appreciated that. And as I was teaching and becoming more confident, more comfortable interjecting my own stories and jokes and things, I really took it to heart of if you're paying to be here, How can I give you the best product?

[01:17:48] Matt Jenkins: Right. I hated thinking of teaching as a product, but essentially it is, it is a service. It is a service. Right. Right. So that's when looking at the forums, like, you know, if you were sending your. Your 10 year old son, daughter, and you're again, you're, you're putting your faith in that person to set them up for success.

[01:18:05] Matt Jenkins: How do, how do, how do I ensure you're getting your money's worth? Right. And getting a lot of that input and taking notes and really taking it to heart was great. Um, I still pass out at the end of the week, you know, your stereotypical, you know, one to five rating. How was the course? This, that, and the other, what can we do better?

[01:18:19] Matt Jenkins: What did you like? Don't teach a lot anymore, but I still, I read every one. Yeah. Would 

[01:18:24] Travis Bader: you pass it out before the test or after 

[01:18:26] Matt Jenkins: the test? Uh, I passed it out with the exam and I said, don't put your name on this. There isn't a spot for your name on this form. Don't leave it in your test package. When it comes back to me, I want you to feel confident that this is as anonymous as you want to make it.

[01:18:41] Matt Jenkins: And I'm not going to review these until I get home. And I've kept every single one, um, mostly good, obviously some bad, but such as life. Did 

[01:18:49] Travis Bader: you find value in those? Because quite often I would find people, Oh, it was great. Oh, it was awesome. But they don't have anything to really compare it 

[01:18:57] Matt Jenkins: to. If they didn't put handwritten comments and they just did the, you know, the one to five, they meant nothing to me because it was usually, you know, Threes or fives or whatever, right?

[01:19:07] Matt Jenkins: It's all very perception based. But if I read a comment and it said, uh, you know, whatever, right. I would take it to heart, right? If I'm noticing a theme, um, if I was, you know, sure, I have my cheat sheet and I'm ticking boxes as I'm teaching to make sure I hit the relevant points, but sometimes something gets missed and you're going, oh, this came up on the test and I really don't think you covered it that well, mental note.

[01:19:31] Matt Jenkins: Cover X or Y or Z better. Cause you're noticing that trend. So I'd say kind of 50, 50, but enough of a benefit that I continued to do them. And then, yeah, so that was my journey of teaching core, um, that a huge passion for it. Um, the thing I found though, is, is working with Kent, he had a, had a classroom, all kinds of mounts on the wall.

[01:19:54] Matt Jenkins: You know, you could point around the room, this is, this your birds, here's your, any critter you could want in BC. It was there. Yeah. Moving away, trying to do my own thing, not enough business where I am to, you know, lease any, anywhere and do it full time. And honestly with, with the job, probably not something that I really could have done with the same degree of passion.

[01:20:13] Matt Jenkins: Right. So to go to, um, you know, rent the conference room, having a contracting out to educational facilities and basically doing it out of a couple of rubbermaid totes, bringing in some, uh, antlers and some dead heads that have been acquired and donated. It wasn't the level, it wasn't. The quality of product that I was used to.

[01:20:32] Matt Jenkins: So really quickly, my passion to do it, it just dropped off, right? So I, I love doing it. Um, I, I love providing it to friends, to family, you know, if you want to challenge the exam. Um, you know, we'll do it, uh, if I have a group together and I have the right venue, I've done it at a couple of gun clubs, which, you know, if we've ever been in a gun club, a clubhouse, they're rustic, but it kind of lends back to, again, you've got the, you know, the scuzzy old, uh, faded mountain goat on the wall and stuff.

[01:21:01] Matt Jenkins: So at least there's stuff to point out, right? I enjoy classes like that. Uh, but just, you know, to go to the best Western and say, I need your, your, your 25 seat banquet room. Nah, no interest really. And yeah, I was lucky, uh, Kent and I for years. For years, we, we got to go for hunt. We got to go for hunt. But of course, with us teaching, the fall was the busy time.

[01:21:21] Matt Jenkins: Yeah. Did you ever hunt with him? Once. Yeah. After years of when he was away, I'd be teaching when I was away, he'd be teaching. So finally the stars aligned back, uh, right before I went to depo. So really when our paths in life were diverging, ultimately permanently, I was able to get away for a weekend with him.

[01:21:38] Matt Jenkins: We, we got a four point and at all the hunts I've been on and the amazing memories I've made that full circle piece was, A memory I'll cherish forever. Right. That's pretty cool. 

[01:21:50] Travis Bader: I remember one year, uh, Kent put out an advertisement and it was like full page advertising either. I know the one. I know where this is going.

[01:21:58] Travis Bader: You know where this is going? I think it said like voted number one in, in BC and I remember calling him up. I've talked with him like, Where the hell were you voted number one? Like, what, what was this whole thing about? He's like, well, I don't know. My mom said I was pretty good or something along those lines, 

[01:22:13] Matt Jenkins: right?

[01:22:13] Matt Jenkins: It was probably me and Kent BSing after a class. Well, we think we're pretty good at this. Let's say we're number one. Who's going to say no? Well, hi Travis. 

[01:22:22] Travis Bader: That was so funny. I'm like, what is this voting thing? Like, I don't, I don't get this, right? That was, I thought that was funny. Um, um, um, yeah.

[01:22:32] Travis Bader: Interesting. Interesting to community and the industry. It's, um, it's different than I see in the States. In the States, you go to Marty Hayes's school, firearms Academy in Seattle. And he says, here's what I do. Here's why I do it. Here's why I think it's great. But you know what? There's other people in town.

[01:22:52] Travis Bader: Why don't you go down the road and talk to, go to a Thunder Ranch and go over here. And you know what? If you find something that works better, come back to me and then let me know. And we'll see if we can integrate it. There's this sort of brotherhood or camaraderie that, that we seem to see that's, uh, uh, really prevalent here.

[01:23:11] Travis Bader: What I've seen in Canada is there's a, sort of this prestige that people think they have. Like I, I took a two day course. I got a firearms license, right? I got my hunting license and look out if you're an instructor. Now you're really special, right? Yeah. And oftentimes, not always, but a lot of times there's sort of a dog eat dog, maybe it's a lower barrier to entry industry, but the competition, I think gets ahead of some people.

[01:23:41] Travis Bader: And in order to be competitive, they want to tear down those around it. Cause there's two ways you can have the tallest building, right? Build the tallest building. Knock everybody down. Or knock all the other ones down and that knock them down attitude that I've seen time and time again, I don't see the same in other industries.

[01:23:58] Travis Bader: And maybe that's just business. Maybe that's how everyone operates. But, um, I I've, I've looked at it and I look at it as an industry that, uh, hunting everyone's like, oh, they're trying to take our hunting rights away. Firearms. Oh, they're trying to take our guns. And they're feeling attacked on all these different angles.

[01:24:16] Travis Bader: And I don't know if it's sort of, this is how we even the playing field is this, the mountain hunters will look down on the, on the truck hunters, the, uh, black rifle shooters will look down on the, um, the muzzle loaders or whatever it might be, but that sort of, um, mentality I've seen. A lot. Nobody wins. No, they don't.

[01:24:38] Travis Bader: And I've seen it a lot. And that was part of the reason why I started the Silvercore podcast, because I reached a point within, uh, my business where I just saw negativity over and over and over again. And I thought, should I look at getting into a different industry? Or is there a way that I can bring some positivity into a realm of what I know and what I love?

[01:24:57] Travis Bader: And so that, that whole aspect of trying to bring positivity and growth to others, and I've just broadened it out into all of my different ADHD kind of interests. Um, I don't know, it is, is from an instructor, from your perspective, is that what you've seen as well? 

[01:25:15] Matt Jenkins: I, I think, I remember when I was teaching a lot, um, my sense of competitiveness wasn't coming from the place of I want to be the, the guy, because that's silly, but I took a huge amount of pride in, um, just being, I guess, grounded in my approach to instructing, and I say it, Anybody who's been around me for a while, and I've imparted some knowledge on, I say, don't trust any one person's opinion, including my own, right?

[01:25:44] Matt Jenkins: If I tell you something about maybe a piece of glass or a gun or a particular hunting thing, go and test it and validate it and pressure test that against other people's opinions, right? So if you notice a trend, am I fighting against the, you know, and same goes for again, any instructor, any, you know, Any person again, but there's some obvious exceptions to this.

[01:26:03] Matt Jenkins: People who are true savants and artisans of their craft. Yeah, there are, you know, validate people's opinions and, um, Yeah. Pressure test what you're hearing. Right? And again, but this goes back to me again, me trying to be grounded in my approach. If somebody comes to my class and says, what gun should I buy?

[01:26:21] Matt Jenkins: And I said, well, you got to get yourself a 264 windbag because that's my preferred rifle. Anybody knows anything about the 264 windbags like you. No, don't go buy one of those. I will never buy another one again, but I love the gun I have, but because I love it, it's just not the right tool for the job for most folks, right?

[01:26:40] Matt Jenkins: So being able to separate your bias or your preferences to what needs to be done. The needs of the individual is something that I took very seriously and I guess it started from working, uh, in a business selling those things to say, well, this is what I shoot and here's kind of my preference and here's what I'm doing.

[01:26:58] Matt Jenkins: But let's look at things that may fit the bill for you a bit better. Right. Um, so kind of that's, I, I sort of took ownership over giving that high quality product and not displaying a lot of bias or being grounded enough to look at other people's experiences or what they needed, which may not be what I needed and be able to say, okay, this is what I shoot, but this isn't for you.

[01:27:21] Matt Jenkins: This is maybe what you should be doing or buying or trying. Um, but at the end of the day, no, like nobody wins by knocking anybody else down. Right. And just sit and have a conversation with you of what I've learned and what you've learned. Um, there's tremendous value in that for everybody. 

[01:27:36] Travis Bader: You know, it brings to mind.

[01:27:39] Travis Bader: I remember when I was kind of getting into mountaineering, just like, like hiking and I'd rock climb and I would be out in the mountains. I'd do stuff, but not from a serious sort of mountaineering standpoint. And a friend of mine just got out of the British army. He was, um, working with special forces to do the SAS selection a couple of times.

[01:28:00] Travis Bader: And so I'm like, I better get myself kind of sorted out before going out and doing some hikes and getting into the mountains with them. He's now a full fledged ACMG guide and doing well with that. And, um, I started asking around what, What, what are the best boots? Like I need a good pair of boots, right?

[01:28:18] Travis Bader: The ones that fit you. Right. And they say, Oh, get some Danners. Danners are the best, right? You know, okay. So I go buy some Danners and remember the first hike we went out and I learned two things. Number one, boot recommendations, like a lot of things are very, very personal and what might be best for that person definitely wasn't the best for me.

[01:28:39] Travis Bader: And my, my feet took weeks. I was in flip flops for weeks afterwards because they were just. My, when I was pouring out the rain, it was all red and blood coming out. It was, it was so bad. But the other thing that I learned on that one, which I thought was kind of interesting, which ties in with this mental health thing as well, that, um, is kind of the theme of what we wanted to talk about was, okay, this guy, special force working with them, um, tough guy, who's, I can't complain on this hike.

[01:29:10] Travis Bader: And I'm like, my feet are bleeding and I know this short way into it. And this was a long, long go and cold. And anyways, uh, there was me, him and one other fellow and this other fellow, I remember at one point he was like, oh, I'm kind of hungry or I'm kind of cold. And he's piping up and I'm like, whoo, I sure as hell wouldn't be saying anything.

[01:29:30] Travis Bader: Right. I don't want to look like that. And this guy turns around and says, okay, stop, administrate yourself. And I thought, okay, that's kind of interesting. Right. He's like, just brew, brew up some tea. Right. Fix your socks, fix your boots. Right. Um, get, get a jacket on if you're cold. Right. And so I'm quickly, and I was a little chilly as well, and it was freezing weather out.

[01:29:51] Travis Bader: So I'm putting my jacket on, but it's cause this other guy put his hand up. Right. And, and, uh, all of a sudden the dark place that my head was in as I'm hiking up and cold and hurt and, and in pain, um, I'm feeling It's not, it's not so dark. I can, I'm in pain. My feet hurt and everything else, but I'm not going into hypothermia anymore.

[01:30:13] Travis Bader: And this whole approach of not trying to be the tough guy, stop, administrate yourself because we're in it for the long haul. Right. And that little piece of information, Which other people may have picked up in their youth and I didn't pick up until I was in my twenties or whenever that was, um, I've tied over into my physical health, into my mental health.

[01:30:36] Travis Bader: Okay. I recognize something. I'm going to stop. I know where I want to go. Quick admin back on the road. Here I go. Two things I brought up out of that one. So I agree. Don't trust just cause one caliber works for you and you loved it. It's 

[01:30:52] Matt Jenkins: not going to work for everyone. Yeah. I mean, and, and, and gun specifically, you're one of those funny ones where if, if you're asking me questions long enough about, you know, gun a versus or caliber a versus, you'll contradict yourself, you end up contradicting yourself and not accidentally and not because you're flip flopping just because if there was one that reigns supreme, then why would we have a new one every week?

[01:31:09] Matt Jenkins: That's right. Ron Spomer would be out of work. Yeah, exactly. Yeah. 

[01:31:13] Travis Bader: This is it. It's the one, one 

[01:31:14] Matt Jenkins: cartridge. This is the one to rule them all. But that's what we hear every week. 

[01:31:17] Travis Bader: Right. I love it. I saw you writing something 

[01:31:20] Matt Jenkins: down there. Just to, just to close in comment, uh, just on the topic of mental health, but we'll leave that be till we're, if we're, when we're wrapping up.

[01:31:27] Travis Bader: Well, is there anything else we should be talking about? 

[01:31:29] Matt Jenkins: I don't think so. Um, Yeah, like it, uh, I've, I've got tremendous friends. Hunting's been tremendous. My, my career's been fantastic. I wouldn't have it any other way. Uh, um, I'm feeling very fortunate that I've had the opportunity to put myself in a position with developing instructor profiles and all these courses to, to, to, uh, To really do the work to increase, you know, the odds of physical, mental, and emotional survivability of my peers and putting myself in a position where that is becoming a huge passion of mine to see people be successful, right?

[01:32:03] Matt Jenkins: From, you know, the firearms instructor realm to having the post critical incident to getting them back to work, there is a lot of that full circle. Ideally, I would never have to, you know, use a lot of those skills, but being able to hopefully impart knowledge on people in different realms is, is amazing.

[01:32:19] Matt Jenkins: And I'm thankful I've had the opportunity to, and yeah, that's just it. And again, on the topic of mental health, the resources out there, um, wellnesstogether. ca is one that comes to, comes to mind for everybody. Um, If you're in the RCMP and the Canadian forces, there's a lot of specific ones that I won't go into because we have a very diverse audience, but I'm really hoping that something I've said identifies with folks and.

[01:32:43] Matt Jenkins: And whether it's mentorship or mental health or anything, it's just, yeah, I hope people find value in this. Cause that's the game. 

[01:32:51] Travis Bader: I'm going to put links to all these things that you've talked about in here, in the podcast description, uh, I'll put a link to your, uh, your social media. If people want to reach out.

[01:33:01] Travis Bader: And I'm pretty 

[01:33:01] Matt Jenkins: boring on social 

[01:33:02] Travis Bader: media, but Matt, I know this is our first aired, second recorded podcast. I'm looking forward to our third recorded when we do that after this one airs. Thanks. Thank you so much for being on this summer 

[01:33:15] Matt Jenkins: football podcast. I, I'm humbled to be here. Thank you.