Coach Mikki and Friends

Spicing Up Education and Bullying Prevention with Ron Shuali - S3 E17

October 23, 2023 Coach Mikki Season 3 Episode 17
Coach Mikki and Friends
Spicing Up Education and Bullying Prevention with Ron Shuali - S3 E17
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Are you starved for a way to make learning more fun and memorable? It's time to get your fill with our guest, Ron Shuali, a best-selling author and experienced educator. He's got a unique recipe for transforming tedious professional development into an enjoyable and engaging experience. Ron dishes out insights on his innovative workshops, which include elements as diverse as singing, yoga exercises, and videos. You'll also get a taste of his company, Unprofessional Development, and his unique Yogarate program, a blend of martial arts and yoga that helps individuals access their heart and quiet the mind.

Now, imagine being a kid again and discovering that making mistakes is a blessing. How would that reshape your world? Ron sure has an answer. He's not just about education, but about life's hard lessons too. Ron also shares his deeply personal experiences with bullying and how it inspired him to make a world of difference.

Ron's story doesn't end there. From his powerful anti-bullying assembly programs to his illuminating book on bullying, he's on a mission to encourage and inspire. He shares his views on the role of public schools, the importance of parental communication, and stresses the need to break the bullying circle. Tune in as Ron encourages us all to be fearless, be ourselves, and never give up on our dreams. Prepare to be inspired, entertained, and educated, all at the same time!

Breaking the Bullying Circle

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Speaker 1:

Hey, I'm Coach Mickey and I'm so glad that you've joined us, and for those of you that join us on a regular basis, I'm so glad that you do. You guys are so awesome the way that you connect with all of our guests and your comments, your questions and your suggestions of people You'd like to have on. And for those of you that are joining us for the first time, come on in and make yourself comfortable, grab your favorite cup of coffee, tea or whatever beverage you're drinking and I am so glad that you've joined us for the first time and if you have an opportunity, please go back and revisit some of the other guests that we've had on, along with my new YouTube channel, coach Mickey and friends, where we are having so much fun, and we're just gonna make it fun and easy and have you guys join in with some really talented people. But today I am really excited. I have an opportunity to meet this person Just kind of vicariously through an email, and the more information I found out about him and the more I saw what he was all about, I was like I've got to have him on as my podcast guest and for those of you that know, my podcast guests are picked very Strategically of what I want to represent and you guys are gonna have so much fun, so much fun.

Speaker 1:

So just let me tell you a little bit about him before I introduce you. He has spent 15 years working and presenting in the education marketplace. He is a best-selling author of his award-winning book breaking the bullying circle, which you guys know I love that, and the book is based on a successful behavior and management system Building the 21st century child. He's a top motivational speaker and presenter with the expertise in preschool through middle school arena he represents as a keynote speaker. He continues his professional development and workshops and schools and assemblies and conferences nationally and locally. His ability to awaken the mind of students and schools expands into the corporate world as well, and all the participants will laugh, listen and learn to and to succeed, and I am so happy to have you with me today, ron Schwalley. How are you? I?

Speaker 2:

Am doing amazing how you doing.

Speaker 1:

I am doing so fun. I mean so fun.

Speaker 2:

Hey, that works. That works. If that's what, if that's what you're doing and you're having fun, that's great. I love it already.

Speaker 1:

You're gonna find that sometimes I've got Mickey isms that just kind of combine words I mean. So, ron, I love what you're all about. I had an opportunity to go through YouTube channel and see some of your keynote speaking and you have something that I heard and I want to actually just start with this right off the bat. Someone had was interviewing that had attended one of your workshops and the key phrase that I heard her say from you was the more you are entertained, the more you retain. I just want to start off right on the bat, right off the bat, with that one. So please tell me about that, because your way of presenting thing is so unique and so fun.

Speaker 2:

Well, how many of you, including yourself, know all the words to at least one song, if not multiple songs?

Speaker 1:

Oh my gosh, and it's usually the ones you don't like and you still remember.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, and it's so interesting that we Find ourselves all the sudden hearing a beat and then it gets catchy and then all the sudden we start jamming to it and then three weeks later, all the all the words are coming out of our mouth and we never at any point when I like this song. I'm going to try to learn it. No, it's just we were. We were in a different environment in our body and we were not in our head trying to quote, unquote, learn or be educated, and all the sudden we process all this information and we put it to music.

Speaker 2:

So you were entertained, you learned it without ever considering you have to learn it. And then the second that you go to Public school or anywhere else, who like, okay, now you have to learn this, and you're told what to do. Your brain just goes into I don't want it. So then you're in a different state of being. It's like when I was in school, my brain was always in flight mode, staring out the window why do I have to learn this? Why do I have to learn that? How am I going to use it in life? And then Teachers didn't have answers. So I wasn't entertained. But I'm old, I'm one of the. You know a few percent of people that has the what one of the kids called the adb, adhd, d-o-double-g, and I Need to have multiple streams of focus for me to be in my zen. So you know, what works for me doesn't work for others, because we're all different.

Speaker 1:

Well, yeah, everybody learns differently. Those people that need to see stuff, do stuff or hear stuff, you know that learn differently and I think when we categorize each and every person to learn one way, you're right You're gonna lose what 30% of you know of a, maybe even more than that of the people that aren't learning in that particular Way. But your way of bringing Information and how you deal with things is so unique and involved and I like again, I was watching your YouTube channel and because you speak with children, you know from preschool all the way up to the corporate level your way of bringing out information and teaching is is so Unique, but it's also very structured in a way that everybody can capture that. So what would you say is the best thing or the most interesting way that people could take away from Teaching to be able to onto their students?

Speaker 2:

First, connect with your inner child. The inner child some people know of it, some people have heard of it, some people have unfortunately been brainwashed by unhappy people to grow up in their inner child is locked up in a brick house inside their entity. If you don't play, if you don't have fun, if you have gotten yourself trapped in a job because somebody told you that's what you're supposed to do and you weren't lucky enough to be highly oppositional like me and do the opposite of everybody that tried to have me have a job, then you're not going to be able to then connect with your kids when you have a child that has different interests than you Like. In my workshops I don't do PowerPoint presentations. They're horrible. I show videos that when you say I have a structure, let's say I do my behavior mastery. It's a six hour training behavior mastery yourself in the morning and the classroom in the afternoon.

Speaker 2:

I have, through my journeys, found 21 different videos on YouTube that get my message. Not I found all of them, but I mean like six or seven of them are videos of me in my classrooms with my wifey doing stuff with the kids and most of them just portray a message and that's my PowerPoint presentation where it's structured. I start with win-win and then we talk about the mind and the brain and then we start talking about how to understand when your brain is talking at you and you can access your heart, ask your heart questions. So it's entertaining and I'm connecting with the kids in the audience. If they're adults, they have inner children. And when I show videos of kids laughing or when I show videos of the old Saturday Night Live clip of Patrick Swayze and Chris Farley in the Chip and Dale scene and they're all sitting there programmed and they have to be there a certain way at the training and then they're laughing and they're moving and we do breathing and yoga, breathing and stretching. So everything that I do is just the opposite of what they normally do in a training. My wifey and I are opening up a new company. It's called Unprofessional Development, because everything that's about professional development that's boring, is just horrible. So people don't want to learn.

Speaker 2:

But you go through two hours with us you don't remember what the heck happened, but all of a sudden you have access to more joy and happiness because 25% of the time you're watching videos we're doing sing-alongs. I have a soundboard that I hit a button that says SC on it and the whole arena goes Swing Caroline, and then the crowd, hopefully, goes Ba ba, ba, and then now they're moving, they're breathing, they're doing this and the whole environment is all about fun. And then we happen to get to some really, really powerful things in the brain that helps them unlock some of the ways that they've been trapped by past experiences, past trauma. So even when we get to really super heady stuff that's really powerful and emotional, then three seconds later I'm hitting a Bon Jovi song and then they're singing along so they forget the intensity of what we just talked about. But their subconscious is now going.

Speaker 2:

You know, I do have a heart and I do make decisions with it. I can do that more. I actually do understand about the gut and the microbiome and I actually can ask my gut questions instead of just hearing my brain say words. And then my brain goes well, that person's doing this, that person's that. And you're like well, my brain said it, so I'm going to believe it. Instead of going hey, heart, what do you think? And your brain lies to you all the time. Why would you listen to it? And your gut's like what's your heart saying? So I go off on tangents, I sossilis, but it's all about connecting with the inner child, and if you can connect with yours, then you can connect with the inner children of the little kids, because they're forming their inner children right there.

Speaker 1:

That, yeah, that is so true. I mean, at heart, I think we all are small children because we always revert back to that with our past. But one of the things that I. That was really interesting to me is obviously I know you're a martial artist, which which I love I mean we always connect as martial artists but you took this one step further. You have created this incredible program that is a combination of yoga and martial arts.

Speaker 2:

Yes, so I wanted to hear more about that.

Speaker 1:

Yoga. This is really cool.

Speaker 2:

So, being a martial artist all these years and focusing on self-defense, with which a lot has to do with breath work and yelling, I was introduced to yoga by somebody from my past and once I pushed through how uncomfortable it was, especially being a 320 pound, six foot, you know, pro wrestler at the time and once I pushed past what my brain was telling me it was going to be and actually tried some of the classes and felt magic. I was always flexible because of the martial arts. But I mean, even at 48 years, young, at 300 plus pounds, right now I still have my splits, I still have my bridges and I feel just amazing because of yoga. And yoga has a lot to do with breath work. Because while you're holding certain yoga poses, especially if you try, like a raja yoga or a yin yoga class, which is most of the time you're on the floor laying down, moving. You don't even stand up. It's like an hour warm stretching session. But while you're holding a pose for three, four minutes, your brain starts talking at you. It's the same exact thing quieting your mind and martial arts. So I'm sitting there having an option to either get upset at what my brain is saying or take breaths and take breath work.

Speaker 2:

So I started with yoga and then how yoga radi was created. I was having a conversation in South Brunswick, new Jersey, I remember, with two directors and we're talking about yoga and we're talking about martial arts and then the roof or off of the building and clouds parted and lights shown in and all I heard was Then yoga and karate formed into yoga radi and they're like oh, that sounds amazing. And I ran home and trademarked it and immediately and just started developing it and it just made more sense because everything is about breathing. So whether we're holding a yoga pose, whether we're stretching into something called the dragon fire which for adults it's spinal balancing, where you're on your knees and hands, you put your right arm out and your left leg out, if you can visualize it and you're stretching and you're making mistakes. So, as your body's making mistakes, your brain can either be talking at you it's bad to make mistakes or, if you go through our program, we teach the kids the blessing of making mistakes and then we show other kids that are doing it and they're stronger. We teach the kids, kiss your brain, say thank you. Your brain's learning and it creates a win-win environment and because there's people that have been taught certain things from people that had been taught certain things. Some people have been taught making mistakes is bad and they're in first grade. They raise their hand and they get the wrong answer. The kids laugh. Their programming is mistakes are bad. They don't learn about taking a breath and realizing it's okay. You make mistakes, ask your heart what you should do next time and then, 20 years later, they can't raise their hand about everything, anything, because trauma has done a wonderful job of trapping them into not being able to take an action.

Speaker 2:

So in yoga radi, we yell, we scream, we do sun citations where we bring emotion to them. So, as a guy being programmed, you're allowed to be upset or mad. But if you cry in front of other men, if you show true emotion, that you're a blank, blank, blank, blank, blank, just leave it at that. We're teaching these kids. When you do your sun citations, sometimes you're sad. So if you're sad, then breathe in and breathe out. And what would a sad sun citation be?

Speaker 2:

And if you go on to our yoga radi YouTube channel, we have the regular sun citation. We have a sad one. So you're breathing in and breathing out and moving through different animal poses and there's a horse. So we say what does a sound horse sound like? What does a sad doggy sound like? They whimper and then we get to that dragon fire, which is what I just talked about, that stretching of the body, and we just unleashed. Or I ask the kids, like what is a sad dragon? Shout or shoot out and they go like tears or whatever, and then we cry and we let this emotion out and then after 10, 15, 20 seconds we're like, okay, cool, and then we breathe and we're fine.

Speaker 2:

So the kids are learning you feel something, express it, let it out of your system, because energy and motion is what an emotion is, not the way that we were taught growing up by traumatized people push it down, suppressed it. We got to let everything out so it doesn't stay in our body and create disease inside of us. So that's what we do with the yoga, ronnie, and we're teaching the kids blocking, we're teaching the kids punching, we're teaching the kids kicking. We're teaching the kids I have a song that I wrote called if you want to stop a bully. That's a cartoon song that I teach how to block, how to kick and how to hammer fist on the nose, because in life there's reality and I want kids to be able to defend themselves, which is why I always first thing I suggest to any parent once your kid turns four or five, take them to different martial arts schools and jujitsu, mixed martial arts, taekwondo let them try everything and and then see how much more positive life turns out when the child becomes just utterly confident in themselves. Wonderful.

Speaker 1:

Which brings me to my next question.

Speaker 1:

You are the author of Breaking the Bullying Circle and I love this because one of the things about the martial arts is we have an opportunity as instructors to work with kids and I know firsthand, you know, besides building the confidence you know, and and also giving them good self esteem and courage, you know, and self control, but the bullying, the Breaking the Bullying Circle, is so important.

Speaker 1:

I can't tell you how many families have come to me in the past and said you know, I want my, my kid to learn martial arts because there's bullies at a school or he's been bullied or he doesn't have self esteem. So we know that, you know, through the martial arts or as martial artists. However, I think the the you know, I would say the majority of the parents that are in the school that are unaware of what's happening or transpiring or because, like you said, 21st century, you know, building the 21st century child. Things have changed. They've changed a lot since I was in school and I know they've changed a lot since my kids were in school and now that I'm seeing friends that have got small children and I'm like, oh man.

Speaker 1:

So so so I want to touch on that. First of all, tell me a little bit about this the Breaking the Bullying Circle and you know what your story and how this transpired.

Speaker 2:

Sure I, 12 years young. My parents put me into a military academy, naval Academy in New Jersey, because they thought that the American Navy was similar to where we grew up, where they served. I was born in Israel. My parents were both. My dad was an Israeli tank commander, my mom did other stuff. We have family in the Navy.

Speaker 2:

So they thought, because of my ADHD, because my non interest in industrialized public school, I didn't want to do tests. I mean, all I want to do was just fight and have fun and be silly and goofy and be the class clown that now I get paid to do professionally. So it always comes out that way. If you're able to, so it. Basically, I went to this place because I was getting bad grades and you don't talk to your parents for the first two weeks and by day two I realized it was hell. I realized I never watched Full Metal Jacket till 10 years later and I was nicknamed by day two Gomer Pyle because I just I wasn't athletic, I had glasses, I had braces. At that time my parents had me believing I was Jewish. So it's like all these things and I couldn't fight back. Not because I couldn't, because I chose not to, because the conversation my mom had with me before was if you fight back, you get expelled. We lose our $12,000. Your uncle, who was like number two something, admiral and the Navy is going to send a bunch of guys over. They're going to throw a bag over you, throw you into a van, put you on a plane and you're not coming back until you finish the army. I was 12 and they were worth. They were talking this was in the 80s, you know so like anything was possible. So basically I tried to kill myself after three weeks because I was blamed for something I didn't do. Two weeks into it your parents get to see you. I told them what's it called? What was happening. My mom didn't believe me. So pretty much I had to take my own situation into my hands and then just came back to public school and just became a bully because my programming was never going to happen again and you know it was just just darkness.

Speaker 2:

The transformation happened when I did a seminar called the Landmark Forum in January 2001. Just the most amazing. They don't even advertise. It's amazing, it's been. It's been like, you know, 20 plus years. I know people and family members that have done it three days. It transforms your life is just magic, thank you.

Speaker 2:

And ever since I did that that's when I started. Really, I got rid of my if you complete your past and have a blank slate out of this seminar. So I started. I went to my karate teacher at the time that I was learning how to be a better fighter and said I want to teach kids martial arts, can you teach me? And him and his wife took me under their wing. I learned about them. They were an elementary school teacher and a preschool teacher and then I started doing preschool age karate programs. But in that seminar in the landmark there's something called the self expression leadership program, where you create a community event and then pass it off. So you're creating leaders. So I created my first bullying assembly program. Fast forward, 10, 15 years later, I'm doing these in schools and it's just.

Speaker 2:

I stopped doing bullying assembly programs a long time ago. Not a long time ago I would still do a couple outside of schools Just because, like if you go onto my breaking the bullying circle website or YouTube channel, there's videos of kids asking me and I'm in front of the principal and the teachers and the kids are like third, fourth graders. Why do I get in trouble if I stand up for myself. Why do I get in trouble if somebody's trying to hit me? I told my teachers over and over again. I'm like how much do you tell? I told her. I told her it's like anybody doing. No, they say they'll take care of it. Are you still getting beaten up? Yeah, and then I'm just like so I stopped doing that in public schools.

Speaker 2:

And that was after I wrote the book, because the book is just years of interviewing people on what's going on in the world and like. Chapter one is about a mom who's getting shamed by in my opinion, weak or traumatized parents because her daughter stood up for her friend at a birthday party. Another chapter is about a principal who's not going to handle a bullying situation on the bus because the bully is the friend of the superintendent of the like. All these different examples of different things that are just going on, and the shame of it all is like when I was growing up. Like I said, I'm 48, human years young. You know you get into a fight, somebody makes fun of you. Every victim eventually turns into a bully and you know you can't just stay a victim your whole life. It becomes horrible to either end up taking yourself out, which is what I tried to do, or you try to take out the bully with some weapons. And you know all the stuff that we've heard from Columbine all the way up to the whatever. You know America, the 300, 300 plus shootings a year. Every other country's like six, five, whatever, but it's.

Speaker 2:

There was a whole societal shift where schools were using the zero tolerance policy for weapons, which makes sense, you know. You bring any weapon, you're kicked out, you're suspended. Duh, it's like a no brainer. But then they started using it for bullying and in New Jersey they created the worst bullying laws by this that were supported by this Chris Christie governor guy who just is a bully himself, and basically that in consult the teachers, it's all to protect themselves. And then the bullying laws have turned into any bullying happening in your classroom. The teacher's not allowed to handle it. She has two days to write a report that then goes to an anti-bullying specialist who's just a guidance counselor. They have 10 days to write a report. Then it goes to the principal, then it goes to the superintendent. A month and a half later, board members that aren't even educators look at a piece of paper and say that's bullying or not, while this kid is either crying, not wanting to go to school, contemplating writing a list of murder victims. All this insanity, shit. It just, it's our. I don't know if I would say that. So it's just, it's just amazing. And then schools. So in addition to that, the schools tell kids, if you put your hands up to defend yourself, you're suspended. You have the same punishment, if not worse.

Speaker 2:

Sometimes, parents you know their brains are their brains they still say things like well, schools are the same, schools are safe, schools are the best place to take your kids. Anybody that has any sort of understanding about public schools and indoctrination and brainwashing and all that stuff, just really, you know they already have their kid home school. They're taking care of it with preschool pods or world schooling or the other 10,000 options other than, you know, public indoctrination school. So basically, parents don't have conversations with their kids. So I do assembly programs and I have videos that I do like in boys and girls clubs and I have the kids ask the parents four questions, and the four questions are what do you want me to do if somebody's making fun of you, fun of me in school, which everybody usually says the same. Go tell a teacher blah, blah, blah, you know. Tell someone which you know does, does something, does nothing.

Speaker 2:

Who knows every situation different? Question Number two what do you want me to do if somebody's making fun of me on a screen? So you know, facebook, instagram, whatever. So now at least someone tells you, you know your parents are like let us know, because sometimes people bully and say, if you tell your parents, we're going to blah, blah, blah, this and that. So open communication, and here's the good stuff. Number three is what do you want me to do if somebody's punching me, kicking me, pushing me, smacking me, spitting on me in school? So when the parents say, defend yourself, stand up for yourself, you know, hit them back, blah, blah, blah. And the kids jaw drop, because the kids they're already programmed by the school. What do you mean? I'm gonna get suspended.

Speaker 2:

And an parent that is a martial artist, a parent that cares about their kid and over, you know what the principal's gonna say, you know whatever. Which is amazing because I do talk to a lot of parents and it's incredible the programming that their brains say when, like, I'll talk to a parent and they're like well, this, my child's getting punched in the face. It's like, well, what happens if they block or they do? And then all of a sudden, this NPC robotic program, because we run 80, 90% of our day, automatically, subconsciously, a sentence, a line just flies out oh, we don't solve violence with violence. I'm like, okay, so now that you've said that statement, how does that protect your child from being abused every day? Then the brain shuts off, the heart opens up, reality sets in and the kids and jujitsu in two weeks.

Speaker 2:

But that's the challenge is also, you know, having parents awaken from this delusional world that public schools are there to do anything other than to make sure that the eight hours they spend in school translates into college, translates into the eight hour job they're going to go into so that they become good citizens and pay taxes. So that's why. So it's so. The whole entire point is that you ask the parent what do you only do if somebody's picking on me, hurting me, pushing me. So then the parent goes stand up for yourself, defend yourself. And then I believe it's the parent responsibility to show the kid what, like, what does that mean? Like, if someone goes to hit you, put your hand up. If someone grabs onto you, do this If you don't know what to do, you take them to a professional and you put them in martial arts and you do that. And then the fourth question just to wrap up, because I love to talk is what do you want me to do if somebody makes, somebody tries to hit me outside of school?

Speaker 2:

Because there are parents that are in the belief which is fine that you know you're allowed to be abused if it's inside the school. But once you go outside of the school, if you have a victim mentality, now you're on the playground, maybe there the parents are like all right, I don't want my child to be a complete victim the whole life. They're allowed to defend themselves. And then you know, and then at least the children have open communication and expectations. And then hopefully, the parent will also have a conversation, sometimes based on my coaching, that you know, listen, honey, the school's going to be mad. I'm going to go in, the principal's going to make up stories that they wouldn't allow if it was their own child. But they have to say certain words. I'm going to tell the principal they're wrong.

Speaker 2:

We're going out for pizza and ice cream and every year that let's say they stood up for themselves on September 28th. Well, guess what? Put that in the calendar Every year. Celebrate that as the day that you stood up for yourself. And now, if you're a parent listening to this, think about what direction is your child's life going to go? Allow them to be a victim because you believe schools are safer for your kids? Or talk to your kids. Teach them how to defend themselves, because in reality, there's not every world and there's not nice people everywhere and teach them reality, and then they'll actually grow up to not only defend themselves, they're going to protect their family and they're going to stand up for other people that are programmed. That being a victim benefits them.

Speaker 1:

Wow. Well, we have unfortunately run out of time and I could sit and talk with you for hours, so I have to have you back.

Speaker 2:

Ron.

Speaker 1:

I have to have you back real quickly before we wrap this up. How can everybody reach you? And, as you know, all of Ron's information will be embedded into the podcast and I know you're going to want to reach out to him and hear more and then connect with him on his YouTube channel. But real quick for those that are listening in their car. How can they reach out to you?

Speaker 2:

Google me. Or just look up RonSpeak R-O-N-S-P-E-A-K. Or just Google me if you can figure out how to spell my last name. Let the games begin, All right. Thank you so much for being with us today.

Speaker 1:

I've enjoyed you, I love your information and I'm excited to have you back. So thank you so much, ron. My pleasure. I hope I didn't barrel over you.

Speaker 2:

No, you were great, you were perfect, you're everything that we want to hear.

Speaker 1:

So thank you so much. All right, you guys. I am so glad that you were with us today and wow, what an episode.

Speaker 1:

And I know many of you are going to be reaching out to Ron and I know many of you are going to be sending me lots of comments and questions through all my social media and I love that and please have them keep coming, because a lot of my podcasts are all based on what you guys want to know, just to make life real and remember the most courageous thing you can do is be a person who can help you Remember the most courageous thing you can do is be yourself and, for those of you that know me, always be fearless, embrace your flaws and always be you. I love you guys. I will see you next week. Bye.

The Power of Entertaining Education
Unprofessional Development and Yoga Radi
Break Bullying Circle With Martial Arts
Bullying Awareness Seminar Impact
Appreciation for Audience Engagement and Encouragement