This week in episode 2, we’re unraveling these questions in the context of Ted Lasso’s second season and unpacking what it means to be true to who you are, how to find comfort and encouragement in the people you trust, and why we have to be brave in moments of vulnerability.
What happens when our identity becomes so tightly intertwined with what we do? When we experience obstacles in our professional life, how do we deal with that loss of confidence?
This week in episode 2, we’re unraveling these questions in the context of Ted Lasso’s second season and unpacking what it means to be true to who you are, how to find comfort and encouragement in the people you trust, and why we have to be brave in moments of vulnerability.
As we discuss decoupling our identity as a professional from our identity as a person, we consider this question of security vs. success and how to balance and encourage the growth of both in a workspace.
“We talk a lot in the work that we do about wanting to create these psychologically safe spaces. We want to create spaces where people can show up and be themselves, and that’s what Ted has done. But at what point does that pendulum swing too far to the other end where it’s damaging the organization?” – Dimple (12:54)
In This Episode
Resources & Links
Just a quick heads up that these are adults having adult conversations about things that take place on a show where the adults use a lot of adult language. All this to say there might be some salty language ahead, so please plan accordingly.
Ted Lasso Clip (00:11):
Bring that email. Just be like, listen to a cover tune of your thoughts. Rather hear this tune for the first time from the original artist <laugh>.
Well, if you insist.
There's a wonderful atmosphere here. All the employees are thoughtful and kind, and they actually listen to one another.
Yeah, I noticed the same thing. Hey, let me ask you this now. Do you think we got ourselves, uh, “if it ain’t broke, don't fix it” situation here or what?
That depends. Does everyone agree that being winless with eight straight draws ain't broke?
Heavy is the head that wears the visor, Coach Lasso.
What would Ted Lasso do? That's the question we explore in each episode of this podcast. We take the lessons we learned from Ted Lasso and apply them to the real world through the lens of leadership and positive psychology. My name is Dimple Dhabalia.
And I'm Jeff Harry. We hope you enjoy this episode as much as we enjoyed making it and that it helps you discover your own lasso way and embrace what it means to belief. Welcome, everyone, back to What Would Ted Lasso Do podcast about how Dimple and I explore Ted Lasso through the lens of positive psychology and leadership development. We just watched episode two of season two, and I'm amped. It was such a salty episode. Dimple, what did you think? Break it down for us before we get into this.
Okay. Well, I'm really curious to hear about the salty piece of this. I think I know what I'm talking, what you're talking about, but yeah. So this week we're covering season two, episode two called “Lavender.” This was written by Leanne Bowen and directed by Declan Lowney, which we've seen him direct several episodes in the past. So yeah.
So I'll tell you why I think it's salty. There's so many salty people in this episode. I mean, we can first start with Nate. Why is he so salty? He's such an a-hole in this. I'm hating him every episode. And I know people are like, “oh, be careful about Nate. I don't know what's gonna happen with Nate, but I know there's something.” But like, he's just horrible. <laugh> He like, just reminds me of like toxic people I used to like work with. And then Jamie who's getting less salty right at the beginning of the episode, like after, after getting kicked off the show, which by the way, I can go into that show in a mo–, in more detail because I watch shows like that. It's so embarrassing. But I love, I love those shows and I hate myself for them. At the same time, I hate watch those shows, but we'll get, get into that.
So Jamie's a little less salty, Roy's as salty as ever and then getting praised for his saltiness. And then you got the doc who's just standard salt. But for some people it's, it's too salty for Ted. She's just way too salty for Ted. There's just a lot of saltiness, a lot of like edge and a lot of like tension. Yeah. And I'm sensing the, the theme of vulnerability throughout this entire episode, but it's like vulnerability getting cut and then someone putting salt in the wound like, like the, the Bae restaurant guy, when he is like dribbling it on his shoulder into your wound that you're like, “ouch!”
<laugh> Yeah. I had not even thought of it that way, but okay. Definitely. Yeah, a definitely salty episode for sure. <laugh>. Yeah. So Nate. I mean it's, well first of all, you, you covered a lot of stuff in that, so definitely some main storylines, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So there's Ted and the doc getting to know each other. And like testing those boundaries. And then there's Jamie kind of figuring out like, what do I do now? You know, like all my options are starting to get cut off. And that storyline I think is definitely interesting and kind of parallels, as Keeley points out to us, parallels what Roy is kind of going through as well. So that's kind of an interesting mm-hmm. <affirmative> piece to explore. And then, yeah. And then Nate, so let's start with Nate. We're starting to see more of that kind of prickly side of him coming out, or as you said, the salty side of him coming out. A lot of which we saw last season. When you look back now, you can see those moments where he had like those little bits of anger or little bits of where he was just kind of like just cutting and biting towards people. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you know, and now we're seeing it. Now he's in this position of power, and we talked about this a little last week where you've got a new leader who's like trying to figure out like how to assert his leadership.
And it's so different from all of the people around him that are modeling this for him, you know?
Yeah. And, and it's – oh, go ahead.
Sorry. I was just gonna say maybe not all of the people, because in a way Rebecca was like that too. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> most of last season, right. Like the way that she treated Higgins, especially, and like we've talked about before, whatever's happening at those highest levels often trickles down, you know. But his immediate surroundings with people like Ted, people like Higgins, the way that they model leadership is so different. And so it's really interesting.
Yeah. And it actually reminds me of a conversation I had recently where, where I was talking to someone where I was like, you don't understand someone's workplace trauma from their previous job and how they take it into their next job. So who knows what Nate had experienced being, I don't even know what he was. The ball boy, the groundskeeper up until that time.
The kit man.
The kit man.
Yeah, the Kitman, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So, but it's now fascinating that he's just looking for any excuse to like poop on someone else, specifically this one guy, you know. Whether that's how the water tastes or whether the clothes smell lavendery or not lavendery. I mean, and he's just like looking for opportunities to exhibit dominance, and it just comes off in such an insecure way and such an oblivious way. Especially when later on in the episode he's just like, you know, “I don't know if we should have Jamie, you know, we don't want another person in the locker room just belittling people for no reason.” <laugh>. Like, he's just so oblivious to his like behavior. And then he's constantly trying to then look for that rapport of like, “yeah, Ted, don't you remember? You don't want like incompetent people here.” Like, he's like, “I never said that.”
Like, I didn't – Yeah.
Like he's just, he's just looking for connection but in the saddest ways. And then because he's acting from such an insecure place, when it's offered that he might have to share his desk or share his room with Higgins – someone that had fricking is like such a high up in the organization – and he is like, “I gotta share with that guy.” Like, it's unbelievable. You're like, where, where the cau-casity. The audacity of you, sir.
<laugh>. Yeah. What's funny about the scene that you just mentioned where he talks about, you know, we don't want someone belittling, he's literally mid-sentence when he, like, he starts yelling at Will again and then comes back and doesn't remember what he was even talking about. You know? And what was interesting to me is like, yeah, so like when they, when Ted talked about putting Higgins in that office with him, there was two things that came up for me. Number one, Ted didn't actually talk to him about it, which was interesting. Because normally Ted would, right? I think at least he would. But what was showing up for me is I was watching Coach Beard's reactions to all the stuff that Nate was doing and then Ted's reactions. And so it felt like Ted was a little distracted because I think his mind is on Dr. Sharon.
mm-hmm. <affirmative> And like, what's she doing here? Why is she here? Why do we need her? And I think he's a little distracted and he's not necessarily like, I think he's noticing that Will is, I mean, sorry that Nate is bullying and stuff like that, but he's not so present to like actually call him out on it. And you know, which we've seen him do in the past. Like he's, you know, he called Jamie out on stuff in the past and stuff, so, but then you see Beard. And Beard actually he's got that like look on his face every time Nate does something. And then, you know, with the towels, when he was just like, “you know, we want, we want killer athletes, not calm athletes” and, and Beard's like “even after they shower?” Right. You know? Right. And, you know, and so I think like Beard is now like starting to just hone in and watch what's happening. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but, but Ted's not doing anything. Yet it's interesting ‘cos it just doesn't feel like him.
Yeah. And also you can see, and I'm sure people have seen this themselves with their own a-hole in their workplace, right. But where they also take their job so seriously that in such a myopic way that he really does think the scent of the shirts is the reason why they're scoreless or they, or they've, they've only tied, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, Like, you just start, you have such a grandiose vision of yourself. And then I think another theme that showed up that you mentioned is this idea of like, no one's checking in with each other or not enough checking in with each other. Right? Yeah. Like, Sam assumes Ted's not checking in with him. Ted is not checking in with Nate about Higgins. What else? There was another one, there was a few other ones where they're just like not checking in with each other. And I just found that really interesting because it was like, or not wanting to check in with each other. Like, I remember even when Ted is sitting with Rebecca and they're sitting there and they're like, “do you have anything you wanna share? Do you have anything you wanna share?” And then they just sit all awkward and then they're like, “Nope.” And then they <laugh> get going. Right? Like, people like in this, because the theme I really felt was like vulnerability for the whole episode. It's just like, where can you be vulnerable? Where can you not be vulnerable? And who is willing to be vulnerable right now? And who sees it as a crutch?
Yeah, I definitely agree with the vulnerability piece. The theme that came out for me as like the whole overarching for me was about identity and like being in a place of identity crisis. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, because you've got Ted, who's I think questioning his identity as a coach right now mm-hmm. <affirmative> when you have to bring in a sports psychologist to try to help your team move past whatever it is that's blocking them and holding them stuck in this space of ties, right. They've had eight ties now. I think there's, there's that, you've got Rebecca kind of questioning her identity as she's like dipping her toe back into the dating pool. You've got Nate questioning his identity as a leader and how he's gonna do that. And then you've got Roy and Jamie kind of – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – questioning their identities without, if they're not football players – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – like what do they do?
Who are they? And so this idea of, and we've talked about this in the past, you know, how do we decouple our identity from the thing that we do, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And so like, who am I as a person, lLike apart from the work that I do? Yeah. Or the game that I play or whatever it is is, and it's just that I thought that was really interesting how that was, that was weaved in for so many people. And then how their reactions to that, like how they, and it's good because they've given us the full like spectrum of how people react when they're in that space of crisis and like wondering like what it is, you know? But what was really interesting to me, and it didn't hit me until, you know, I watched it a few times and towards the end where Dr.
Sharon says like, she's gonna give her assessment to Ted about like, you know, what she's noticed and things like that. And she says, you know, like, “this is a super thoughtful and kind atmosphere. People really listen to each other.” And so he, he automatically is like, “okay, great. Like it's working.” And he says, you know, “so is it one of those, if it ain't broke, don't, we don't need to fix it, kind of things?” mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And then she turns that back on him to say like, “well, does everyone consider being winless with eight straight draws being ain't broke?” <laugh> mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I think, and that's when it really hit me. It was kind of like, she's also looking at like, well what is, what is it that is happening in this locker room? People are happy and they're connected and they're, you know, and the question it brought up for me, which I thought was interesting is, you know, we talk a lot in the work that we do about wanting to create these psychologically safe spaces.
We want to create spaces where people can show up and be themselves, and that's what Ted has done. But at what point does that pendulum swing too far to the other end – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – where it's damaging the organization. And I thought that was really interesting because I don't know, you know, I've always been such a proponent of let's create these spaces, let's create these spaces. But there is another side to that. Where, do we become complacent and just are like, “well, I'm happy so it doesn't matter”? Like, it doesn't matter if I don't finish the work, it doesn't matter if I don't win the game. It doesn't matter. Right. You know? And so I'm curious what your thoughts are.
Yeah. I think of that in the sense of like, you know, okay, the combination of what type of leadership do we want? Right? What's really important? Do we want competitive type of leadership right now? Or we want a collaborative type. You know, do we want to be driven by power? Do we want it to be driven by like the “we over the me”? Right. And I think that's where there has to be that not just balance, but that tug that tug of war between both, you know, because it's what we said earlier when Roy was chilling, Roy was chilling, Roy, Roy was like, “I'm going to make this like juicy chicken tonight.” And Keeley's like, “I'm so bored of this man. Like, he's so boring right now. Like, like he just wants to coach his little league soccer game and you know, do his yoga and cook.”
And it's just like, and she's, she's like, that lack of like competitive nature is like gone, which is then also the, the sexiness has gone for her, right? And she's like, I need that competitive edge back, right?. So I think if we're talking about in the sense of like masculine and feminine leadership, you need both, right? You need both the competitive and the collaborative. You know, you need both, sometimes the commanding and then also you need the listening and understanding and coaching. Like, both have to exist. And I think a lot of organizations swing one way or the other way and aren't able to sit in that discomfort of the messiness of both. And that's what – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – maybe Doc or Dr. Sharon is challenging him to do. Having said that, and going back to the beginning of the episode with Jamie, man, that, what show he was on, oh, I watched those shows. <laugh>
I watch Love Island, I watch Love Is Blind, I watched Love, blah, blah, blah. I mean, there are so many of these ridiculous shows that I watch, what was the other one? Oh, Too Hot to Handle. And I hate myself <laugh> as I watch all of these, and I hate the people on there. I don't really hate the people because they're just people, whatever. But like, I hate that I am interested in it, but it's also so fascinating that they capture the pettiness of it. And also the fact that so many people watched it, with, as well. And were like, “Jamie, are you gonna keep dating blah/whoever that woman was. You know, or, and he is like, “I was just doing it for the game.” But it's interesting talking about identity and shedding your identity. He shed his identity as a soccer player playing on one of the best teams and frankly all of Europe, if not all of the world.
And he was getting a lot of minutes just to get back at his dad in a very similar way that Rebecca was getting back at her ex-husband last year, you know, with the team. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So I think there's something fascinating about the fact that he's willing to burn it all down, right? Yeah. And then when he finally realizes he actually did burn it down because he always had a safety net, and now he doesn't have that safety net, who does he actually come to? Not only does he come to Ted, but he comes to Ted with the military man, he's held the military man.
And also that's the first time I saw Jamie actually playing in a really long time, like playing with Ted, where they're like joking about Ted dancin’ and you know, and they're like, they're j–, you know, they're getting attuned with each other. And the last time I saw that like level of attunement was, was when Roy and him would talk trash to one another. So you're just fascinated with, oh my goodness, this is a, a humbler Jamie that really doesn't have like an anchor or a buoy to even hold onto. And he's just lost and he comes back to the people that took care of him the most, even when he wasn't part of the team anymore.
Yeah. Yeah. I thought that was interesting too. And that was like another kind of theme that I thought came through was this idea of relationships between fathers and sons because – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – you see, like, and you, again, they did a nice job of showing you the arc of what those vari like, what they can look like, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So you've got Jamie on the one end who's got like the worst father in the world – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – and he's doing everything he can to get back at him by damaging his own life, right? Like he's giving up on his own opportunities just as a way to piss off his dad. Yeah. Right? And then you've got Sam on the other hand, who's got this amazing father who's like supportive and nurturing and caring, you know, and recognizes that his son is far away and he's got this other father figure in Ted, and he's happy that like Ted is there to protect Sam, right?
Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So you've got two ends of the spectrum. And then you've got Ted who kind of referenced his father. So we know from episode, I think eight last season, that his father died when Ted was 16. And so now we're again like pealing back another layer to his relationship with his father. And so we find out that no, his father wasn't actually hard on him, but he was harder on himself. When you think about that, and going back to what you were saying with Dr. Sharon, like, I think it's interesting because we're getting a sense of what it is that Ted saw growing up. And so we saw a father who was super hard on himself. We see him now swinging totally the other way with his players, right? Like, don't be hard on yourself. Like, that time when Roy was like Oscar the Grouch in the <laugh> in the ice water and was just like, “just tell me I fucked up.”
And you know, and he is like, “I'm not gonna do that. You know, like, you, you made a mistake, it's okay.” And so you've got him going totally the other way. And so what I thought was really interesting when in that last conversation between him and Dr. Sharon was that she says heavy is the head that wears the visor. And so I think she has already kind of figured out like he's carrying a lot of stuff that he's not saying to anybody, and he's trying to like maintain this, like, “oh no, you know, everything's good, everybody's fine, you guys just keep doing what you're doing.” But like, there's gotta be anxiety in there for like, “oh, we already got relegated and now we're not doing any better.” You know, I thought that was really interesting and just how they've subtly started bringing in those relationships between the fathers and sons and the, the fact that Ted now stands in as a father figure for so many of these people. And one of the reasons why he brings Jamie back, right? ‘Cos he says that it's that conversation with Sam where he realized that like, Sam has somebody who loves him and takes care of him, and not everybody has that. And so it was enough to make him feel like, “oh, you know what? I know nobody wants this kid back, but I believe in him and I'm gonna show him that, you know, there's, that somebody cares about him.”
Yeah. Yeah. I think of like, well, maybe it just goes back to, you know, part of Ted's like toxic positivity part where he's just like trying to smooth things over without going deep, and – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – I think it's really interesting when he's talking to Dr. Sharon and he brings her the biscuits and he tries to do the Rebecca strategy and she's like – mm-hmm. <affirmative> – oh, she just calls him out on it and she's like, “oh yeah, this folksy way is how you build rapport with people. I see how this can be effective,” right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. But also, and he's not ready for this, he's not ready for her to set boundaries. Like she, he just barges into the room and Rebecca would be like, “come on in,” right? And now this person is setting boundaries, and then on top of setting boundaries, now she's asking to observe him. Right? <laugh>.
So, yeah. You know, and not only is she moving closer each and every time, but she really is moving closer each and every time. Like there's just, the walls are closing in on him where he can, his folksy thing is not enough. Right. And I'm sure he also probably wanted credit and probably wanted Dr. Sharon to see him talking with Sam, right. She didn't get to see that. She, uh, only saw the outburst and the only person that got to see it is Higgins, who doesn't have a desk anywhere, <laugh>, because he is been adapting himself to allow, you know, so a lot of people are adapting to her and it's, yeah, it's, it's, yeah. It's just so, it's interesting. It's just so fascinating. I wanted to go back to the part of like Roy, and you know, how, you know, he catches Keeley, you know, doing things – <laugh> – because, and, and then I was worried that she was looking at Jamie because she had just seen Jamie.
Right? Like that's what I was –
Yeah, I was concerned. I was like, oh, oh, she's going back to Jamie, or she's thinking about Jamie because Jamie has that competitive edge and like, you know, and then, yeah. And then I was so happy and then also hilarious to watching videos of Roy cry <laugh>. And, and she goes, you know, and he is like, “oh, you know, why are you watching me so weak?” And she's like, you know, “you were being passionate and vulnerable. You haven't been like that since you left soccer.” Right? Yeah. And she's just like, “I'm just not attracted to you in this like this.” I hate to say it this way, but it, she almost sounds like in this like castrated state, right? Like in this like state of like, you've lost your edge. That's why I think it's so interesting that she keeps pushing him to do the soccer thing, right?
To, and then when he finally gets on there, he's phenomenal. I mean, except for the swearing, but he's phenomenal, right? And that is like refreshing for, because then he actually, actually can be himself again, because he can't be that mean to the little girls. Like they just smile at him the whole time. They just don't, they don't react in the same way. They're just happy to get like orange slices and, you know, and collect their awards, their trophies. Trophies that they, I guess didn't earn. <laugh>. And, you know, but he can't, that, like, that competitive edge is not there. So I love how he actually thanks her and just like, again, you, as you're calling me out, you're making me a better person. And yeah, I love that arc throughout the episode.
Yeah, like, so their relat–, their relationship is definitely, like, I always laugh that they're like, they are honestly relationship goals. Like, I love their communication. And you know, earlier you said that like, Keeley just seems really bored with him right now, and I, I didn't, for me it didn't feel like that. Like I think she genuinely, she's gotten to know him, and again, she knows his identity is so intertwined with who he was as a footballer, and he's lost right now. Like she even tells him – mm-hmm <affirmative> – like, Jamie's lost, he's drifting, you're lost. You know, like the difference is Jamie's trying to do something about it. And so, so I think she's coming at it from a place of actually caring and wanting him to be in that space where he's happy again. You know? And he's, he's connected to something that gives him that sense of purpose, which is really lacking right now. As a side note with the little girls <laugh>, I'll say that Fred Goldstein has said in interviews how much he loves getting scenes where he gets to curse in front of little kids. He thinks it's the funniest thing in the world. And so, um,
Oh, that's awesome.
Yeah. So I thought that that was actually really funny. But yeah. And so that whole scene where he actually goes in to be the pundit, that was hilarious. And you know, once again, we've got a really great song that leads him into that space. And so –
Oh, the anti-Christ.
<laugh> So it's a, it's called “Anarchy in the UK” by the Sex Pistols. And it is like, so full of profanity, similar to like, it's, it's Roy's anthem for sure. You know? And so I thought that that was really lovely. But that moment right before he goes in where, again, to your point of vulnerability, like he's scared. – Mm-hmm. – You know? – Mm-hmm. <affirmative> – His whole thing is like, what if everyone thinks I'm shit? And I love the little, like, just the little pep talk that Keeley gives him in that moment. And that's enough to like, get him back to where he needs to be. And, and then he goes out and he's just himself, you know? And I think the cursing is what resonated for people because –
He, right. Like he was just telling it as it is and, and people know that that's who he is. <laugh>. And like, yeah. I thought that was really, really great.
I even love when the person's like, “what do you do with your lashes?” And he is like, “I leave them the fuck alone.” Like <laugh>. Yeah. That's what I do. And then did he get flowers from Jamie? Did Jamie send him those flowers?
No, no, it wasn't Jamie. I think it was another player that he knew. Uh, but yeah, that was funny. Like how does he know I like white orchids?
<laugh>. Yeah, I know. Like, and also the fact that of all, all, all flowers, the white delicate orchids. I love it. I just –
Right? So did you notice that the, uh, the commentator who was sitting next to Roy was actually the former coach of Richmond, or the former manager of Richmond? The guy who fired in the first episode.
Oh I did not know that at all. Wow. Yeah. I did not notice that at all. But, and I found it really interesting as well, because I watch a lot of these sports shows, right? I watch a lot of them – mm-hmm <affirmative> – like just have these ridiculous debates and the most boring people are the ones that play both sides, right? So it's interesting that both those commentators are like, “I think they both played a respectful game and blah, blah, blah,” and they, they just don't wanna offend anyone because they don't want get, they don't want to get made fun of on Twitter or whatever, Instagram or become a meme or anything like that. And it's so refreshing, he shows that are the most popular, especially in the US like in the nba, like what the best show is the one with like Shaq, Charles Barkley and like Kenny Smith, and they're just like making fun of each other the whole time.
And it just looks like they're just like, you're hanging out with them, like just – mm-hmm <affirmative> – in like in their room while they're watching shows. So it's fascinating that Roy is the only refreshing person as if you're hanging out with him at the bar, and he is saying exactly what he is on his mind. And then they cut to the Richmond fans that are like, “yeah, I like this. Yeah, yeah. Tell 'em, tell 'em.” Because they all are thinking that, but no one wants to say it. And he's like, that's why he's so popular. Yeah. Right.
And then they show Keely like scrolling through Twitter, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> Like, Twitter's blowing up ‘cos people are like also saying, “yeah, like, this is great.” And you see <laugh>, I dunno if you noticed, but at the beginning right before they go on the air, like Roy's trying to adjust his chair and it falls all the way down. <laugh>
And then like, he gets to like move it back up. And I thought that was such a nice metaphor, right? Like he's like in that space where he is just like, oh shit, I gotta like figure out how to get back up and just by showing up and like being who he is. And allowing that to shine. Like he, and, and he feels it because like you said, then he gets home and he, and he tells her, you know, “you saved me for myself once again.” Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And, and he realizes like that is what was missing. Like, you know, he was searching for something, he didn't know what it was, but she knew. And I think, you know, and that speaks to partnership, right? Like when you're in a relationship, having someone who is going to lovingly call you out and keep pushing because like she, she did keep pushing. Like we've seen her pushing since episode one. Yep. Yep. And, and she felt a little guilty about it cuz at one point she did call him and say, “you know, I'm sorry, like, I've been pushing.” But she knew like she knew that he needed something more than just coaching, you know, his niece and, and her friends and stuff like that.
So I think there's an also, another lesson that I really learned from this was this idea of like, when you're able to just like, not give a fuck, like when you're just fed up. Like he took his anger that he had towards the person doing his lashes and the chair and everyone el–, and all the pressure and then the white orchids. And he took all that anger and he channeled it through his way. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. Whenever I see my friends shine best, whether it's on social media or in their work or whatever it is, it's when they're just like fed up and they're like, I just don't care. Like, I just need to say this because this is who I am. When push comes to shove and I'm tired of being polite about this, I'm tired of being nice, which is like the acronym of like, “Nothing Interesting Can Emerge.”
And it's just like, let me just, you know, I'm gonna be me and I don't care what it, and that's when people's videos go viral. That's when people's talks are like, like the most poignant. That's like when you get to that point, especially when you're like doing, I'm trying to think of like an example of like, especially when you're like doing work or like, let's say you're putting together a talk and at some point you're like, “you know, I just don't care at this point. Like, I've been working on it for so long, like I know this, I'm just gonna go up there and do my thing. You know? And if people don't like it, they don't like it, whatever.” And that when you're able to let go of that, that's when you're like, you're truly stepping into your power, right? You're truly like now finally cutting through all of the BS and being like, this is me. Take it or leave it.
Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And to your point, when you say take it or leave it, the people who want to take it are gonna be there for it. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. You know, and that's, that's huge because, and that's where you establish that like, genuine connection with people. And so, you know, a lot of what you talk about with attunement and things like that, but it's like you are able to like connect on such a deep level. And the flip side to that though is learning to let go of the people who are not gonna show up for you – mm-hmm <affirmative> – in that space. Because, you know, and we've heard a lot, like, I've heard this a lot of times where it's like, you know, the people who are for you are always gonna be for you – mm-hmm <affirmative> – and the ones who are not like, they're not, and Yep. And that's okay.
Like we weren't put on this earth to be loved by everyone. We do our best to not, well most of us do our best not to harm people intentionally, things like that. But there are gonna be times where we just don't resonate for someone. And that's okay. And I think it's funny, I loved the Post your friend did about like artists who are putting out their work or even like with us putting this podcast out, you know. Like there's gonna be people who have plenty of opinions. And that quote, that Brene Brown, from Brene Brown's books, which actually I guess comes from Roosevelt around like the person in the arena, right? Mm-hmm. <affirmative> mm-hmm <affirmative>. Like if you're not in the arena, if you're not actually doing this stuff, like I don't, I don't really care what your opinion is, but it's so hard to get to that point – mm-hmm <affirmative> – of, of not caring because as human beings <laugh>, like we're, we're hardwired. We want to belong. We wanna feel like, you know, and when we feel or when we get like that kind of negative feedback or, or criticism or whatever, it does, it hits that piece of like, “oh, I that I don't belong in this group now. Like, yeah, there's people who see me differently,” and that's, that's really hard. I, at least for me, it's been really hard to like overcome, and it's something I continue to work at, you know.
It's challenging. I mean, I make a lot of like content, right? Like I make a lot of videos and things like that. And there are times when I'm like, “well, if I make this content, someone might not like this,” and then I wonder whether I should make it or not. And then I know sometimes I'll make content because I'm like, “I think this was gonna be popular,” and then it's not, you know, because I'm like chasing the likes or chasing whatever it is that I'm chasing on that day because I'm feeling insecure. Yeah. And then the other days where I'm just like, I need to make this. I don't care if anyone sees this, but I need to get this out of my body. Right? Those are the ones that resonate, right. And I, and I have to relearn that every single time. And it's tough.
I, I agree with you. It's tough because it's funny that a lot of times we find ourselves trying to impress people that we don't even like <laugh>. Like we don't even, yeah. It's almost like trying to impress the cool kids when you're in high school and you're like, “I don't even like Chad. Why do I wanna impress Chad and get his approval when frankly I don't really care about him?” And then what's fascinating is then when you don't care about what people have to say and you start making certain stuff, that's when they actually then start coming to you and they're like, “oh, I just love your stuff.” And you're like, you're like, “ugh. Yeah. Like, I didn't like you before. I don't like you now.” Like now you're just showing up because now I'm popular, and I agree with you going back to the earlier what you said about like, your diehards are gonna be there regardless, right? Like it doesn't really – yeah – matter. And I think it's just so dangerous that we attach so much of our value based off of like our productivity or our work or whatever like thing we master at. And it really is, we really, and this is gonna sound crazy, but it's just like sometimes we need to do a Jamie. Sometimes we need to like shed it all, you know – mm-hmm <affirmative> – just for, at least for a certain period of time, just to remind ourselves that we're more than just that.
Yeah. Well it's interesting that you say that because in this episode we see the opposite side of that for Jamie, where for the first, first time in the entire, like two seasons now we see that he's lost his confidence – mm – right? Normally he is like swaggering around, he couldn't care less what anybody thinks, but now, like he's actually nervous and so <laugh>, when he is like stalking Keeley on her lunch hour. Mm-hmm <affirmative>. He's never been scared to go and talk to her, right. You know? And he is like following her around cuz he is not sure he is. You know, and then when he actually goes to talk to Ted, like he goes through this whole litany of like, you know, so Ted's like, “how, how are you doing?” And he starts with awesome. The best. Yes. Pretty good. Okay. Little depressed. It's all shit <laugh>. Yep. You know? And so we see like he's just in this like place now where he, he knows he's burned those bridges. He knows that he's in this weird space, and he's not quite sure how to get himself out. And it's impacting how he's showing up now because that confidence of like, “I'm, I'm the best player,” is gone now because nobody wants him, you know?
Right. So then my question is this, if Coach Beard said that Jamie is poop in the punch bowl. Right. And I love that analogy because it's like, it doesn't matter how much poop. It could be 1% poop. It could be, you know, a morsel of poop. It's, it's poop. The whole punch has to be thrown out. Why, even though he got two thumbs down from the Diamond Dogs, and I was surprised that Higgins, he had a Higgins thumbs up from Higgins. Why does he put –
Why are you surprised? Why were you surprised that Higgins had a thumbs up?
I don't even know why Higgins, I just don't know why Higgins said yes. I have no idea. Wait, yeah why? Well, so that's two questions. Why do you think Higgins said yes and then why do you think Ted brought him back? And again, also without checking with the team, without checking with, I mean Higgins didn't know. Right? So I'm assuming other people don't know, and Sam just looks devastated. Just looks straight devastated. Yeah. Why do you think he brought him back?
Yeah. Well so I think, so two things. Number one, Higgins and May are the only two people, May the woman who works in the pub or owns the pub, they're the only two who really want Jamie back. And I think Higgins actually says this that, well, having two Aces could actually be great and –
Oh, that's a good point. Yeah, you’re right.
So he's coming at it from like the business standpoint, right? Like, we have two aces. We'll probably do better. It'll raise ticket sales, it'll keep the club going. So I think he's –
What do you mean two Aces? What are the ac– Sam?
So no. Danny Rojas.
And Jamie. Because remember that we had an episode called “Two Aces” when, oh, the first time we meet Danny is like, he comes running onto the field and then, and Jamie even says, “oh, you know, guys like that can never back it up on the pitch.” And then he does <laugh> and like, right, right. And that's when Beard and Ted are sitting up in the stands and he says like, “I feel like we just fell out of the lucky tree and hit every branch going down and landed in a –
Oh, two aces. Ah, so two forwards. Two two upfront forwards. Got it. Okay. That makes sense.
Yeah. And two people who are just really good. Yeah. And so if you have both of them on the team, like imagine you know, what you could do with that. Yeah. And so I think he's coming at it from that. But I think, again, going back to what we were talking about earlier with fathers and sons, like Ted had already said no to Jamie at the pub and was pretty adamant about that. But it was that discussion with Sam where he was just like hearing about Sam's father and Sam saying, I'm, you know, “my dad's always grateful that I'm here and that you're here, you know, looking out for me.” And I think it hits Ted at that point. Well there's nobody looking out for Jamie. And so I think that that more than anything is what drove him to make that decision. And I, I did notice that too about the, this was actually the, as far as I can remember, and I could be wrong, but I think that this is the first time the Diamond Dogs have actually voted on something related to the team normally. Like they're talking about like their personal issues and things like that, right? But this is the first time where he said, I want the Diamond Dogs to vote. And then he overrode the vote <laugh>, which like, which was funny.
There's also that lesson learned where I thought he learned that lesson last year when Roy was on the team, and he didn't want to bench Roy, right? And he knew that he needed to bench Roy for the good of the team, but in this, so I thought he had learned his lesson, like the team comes before the individual, right? But in this case, like he's bringing Jamie back and it might risk the entire team, right? Like – mm-hmm <affirmative> – even Nate says that. Right? You might lose the entire team with this.
So, yeah. And that's the, that last song that we hear when Jamie comes back onto the pitch is “Tear it Up” by Queen. And yeah, it's got that whole kind of message of like, there's gonna be upheaval and, and you just get that feeling right because like, it's interesting – mm-hmm <affirmative> – that everyone on the pitch is surprised because that means Jamie wasn't in the locker room getting ready with them – mm-hmm <affirmative> – right? So like, where did he just come out of? Right. But yeah, like everyone's surprised, and you're right. You see Sam's face, I think he may be devastated in that he trusted Ted. Yeah. And when Ted said, you know, yeah, I told him we're not doing it, blah, blah, blah. So I think there was that breaking of trust in that moment. Yeah. And probably some anger because we saw how angry he was earlier when he initially thought Jamie was coming back before they had the discussion.
And we've never seen Sam curse. We've never seen him be like all sassy on the field with – mm-hmm <affirmative> – you know, and to hear him like talk back to Ted, it was to the point where Isaac actually says, “Hey, that's enough.” You know? Like he steps into his leadership to be like, “yeah, no, you don't get to disrespect the coach that way.” Yeah. And so we've never seen Sam like that. And so you think about the extent to which Jamie's bullying has hurt him and impacted him, and now we see Sam stepping up into his leadership and suddenly being, feeling like he's having his legs cut out from under him because now Jamie's gonna be coming back potentially, right? So –
And to the point that he walks off, like, yeah, Sam would never do that in the first season. Yeah. But I think there's another wrinkle to that as well, because Roy was the one that would always check Jamie, and now Roy doesn't even exist there. So who's gonna check Jamie now? Right? Or is he just gonna run him up like he did last time? I think that's the fear from multiple people in the locker room, but specifically Sam. Yeah. Having said that, the part that I was like, “oh, I gotta ask Dimple about this because I don't understand,” is why near the end, does Dr. Carol –
– tell Ted, what is, her favorite book is? Why does she tell him Prince of Tides? What does that mean? The whole, I literally wrote, “what does that mean?” “It's my favorite book.” And then she rides off into the distance with her transformer bicycle, you know. What is it?
Oh, well, so, so I do <laugh>, so Dr. Sharon, not Carol, but Sharon.
Oh Dr. Sharon. I'm sorry.
That's okay. Here's a funny thing. So I was watching this panel that Apple put together and all the cast was on it.
Oh, I saw, I saw tweets about that. Yeah.
Did you see that? And so she, they were laughing about how when they did the Zoom interview with her, like she was perfect. They were like, “this is our person,” da da da. They never asked her if she knew how to actually ride a bike. And it turns out she did not <laugh>. And so, so all the scenes, she was laughing about how if you really watch her, like just that little bit that she had to ride in – mm-hmm <affirmative> – and then like do the bike. Like she said that she was concentrating so hard not to fall over in just that little bit, like to get there, first of all. And then that's awesome. She had to learn how to like, put the bike, you know, like transform the bike. But the interesting thing about that was Jason Sudeikis was talking about how they always envisioned this character, like leaving virtually no carbon footprint.
And so like she was meant to like come in, help the team and slip out and like, not leave any traces behind. And that's why like the bike piece was really important. Mm-hmm <affirmative>. But yeah, but they never asked her. And speaking of books, I'll get to Prince of Tides in a sec, but last week you asked me what Beard was reading and I hadn't paused long enough to look. And so I did go back and look and it was actually a book by Matthew Syed, and it's called The Greatest. It's this whole book about like the mental game of sport. So like how do we become the best that we can as individuals, as teams, as organizations? And then looking at sports like, you know, there's the competitive edge within sports, the psychological pressure, and how like all of these things come together to actually make us the best of who we are, the greatest of who we are in a situation. So that's what Beard was reading last week. So the reason that Dr. Sharon shared her book was because if you remember at the beginning when Ted is trying to connect with her, he asked her, “Well, what's your favorite book?”
And then he says, “Mine's The Fountainhead.” <laugh> Which kind of surprised her probably because that is a book that is a lot like, requires a lot of critical thinking. And that's probably not what she was thinking he was about.
Is that Ayn Rand?
Mm-hmm <affirmative>. Yeah.
What? He likes The Fountainhead… What?
<laugh>. I know, I was kind of surprised by that answer too.
But, so Prince of Tides, there's actually – we can link this in the show notes – there's actually an article about, like, that breaks down how the Prince of Tides fits into this whole show. But the, I don't, did you ever read the book or watch the movie?
I've done both. The book was really great. It was by, um, Pat Conroy, and the movie starred Barbara Streisand and was it Nick Nolte? I don't remember who the guy was, but no, it, it might have been Robert Redford actually. Anyway, it doesn't matter. But he's like a, a former football player and his family had a really traumatic childhood. And in the book, like his sister tries to take her own life. And so he meets Barbara Streisand, which is his sister's psychologist, and then they work together to kind of like work through the trauma and like get to the other side of it.
And so in Prince of Tides, the main character Tom, he also just uses humor to really mask his pain about his past and has, like rarely ever talks to anybody about it until meeting this psychologist. And then in the book, the psychologist is very cold and distant on the outside, but that's her defense mechanism. She has like her own issues that she hasn't really shared with people. And so it feels like this is like, as always very like purposefully chosen <laugh>, but also giving us some hints about like what's to come. Because I think there's, there's definitely some good parallels there. But anyway, there's a great, there's actually two or three articles about this breaking down Prints of Tides and Ted Lasso, so we can definitely link to those in the show notes. Nice. For anyone who's interested in diving in further.
Oh, this was, this is a fascinating episode. So OK. What are your biggest takeaways from this? What are you walking away with?
That's a good question. Yeah, I'm, I'm really like, I've been sitting with this question of the psychologically safe spaces and like finding that balance because I just, I really thought that they did such a good job of showing that, again, that you can have, you know, by Ted's definition of success, this team is incredibly successful, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative>. Like, his definition was not about the wins and losses, but about making the players the best versions of themselves on and off the field. And he's succeeded in that, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative>. He's got a happy locker room. He's got people who look out for each other who are standing up for each other, but by outward measures of success, the team is failing, right? And so, and I always think that's an interesting conversation too, like with coaching clients and stuff, like when we tell people like, “well, what, you know, what's your definition of success?” And that definition is really important, but it, I don't think it can stand alone. Like some of these external factors, like we, we do need some of them. Yeah. You know? Yeah. So I think I'm, I'm walking away with that. Like, I think that that's actually a really interesting thing to think about.
Yeah. I think of the workshop I run around like dismantling toxic masculinity, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And that's the whole idea of like removing toxicity from that workplace. But you're right, there's, I wouldn't even see it as balance because I hate the term work work/life balance because it just doesn't, it seems like –
Oh, I don't think – Yeah, no, I, I don't mean like work-life balance.
No, no, I know. I'm just thinking about like that word of “balance” is just like as if it's like –
Yeah, I don’t either.
– a perfect, there's a perfect op spot. I think there's a constant. If you want a healthy workplace or healthy any environment, you need the push and pull. You really need both. Yeah. And you really need sometimes for them to challenge one another in order to get the best out of each other, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative>. Because like – mm-hmm <affirmative> mm-hmm <affirmative> – it's both valuable for Keeley to be very empathetic towards Roy, and it's also really valuable for Roy to show his competitive side, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And that's like his more healthy masculine side, and Keeley showing her healthy feminine side. And then flipping it where Roy sometimes shows his healthy feminine side, and Keeley shows her healthy masculine side like that. It's all mixed, it's all messy. And the more you can have that push and pull, the healthier it can be. And maybe that's part of the reason why, you know, Ted brings Jamie in as well.
It's just like, yeah, we need that edge, we need some, some tension in the room because we need to grow more. And right now we're in a really good spot feeling-wise, but we're not in a good spot like results-wise, so what is it that's gonna like light a fire underneath us so that, you know, we start doing something different that turns it around, not just externally but also like internally? Because I'm sure Ted is also feeling like a little disconnected as well. He doesn't feel like he's fully in his zone. Yeah. What I'm taking away… Hmm… I think more of like the vulnerability piece for me. When was the last time I'm vulnerable? You know, how do I share my vulnerability? Someone mentioned this to me recently. They were just like, “who are the people that you talk to that when you leave you feel there's possibility, right?”
Mm-hmm <affirmative>. And you know, how many of you have people like that do you surround yourself with? And you know, I'm now part of like this almost this vulnerability mastermind where we really are real vulnerable with each other. And the more vulnerable are, the more we can like actually not only connect at a deeper level but really push each other in an empathetic but tough love sort of way. So – mm-hmm <affirmative> – how I can explore that vulnerability is going to be important to me as I'm gonna be having more conversations and I need to have more vulnerable conversations this week. So, Ooh, that's gonna be me.
Nice. Nice. Did you have anything that came up from last week?
That came up from last week? No, last week seems like so long ago. <laugh> I don't even remember that episode. No, I mean, not that I remember. Yeah. If anything, maybe attunement. I don't know. Things, it's fascinating. I've recently have had like many different, and I'm sure same thing in your life, right? Like many things are coming together, and it's, it's a lot of stuff and you feel very busy and you feel like really overwhelmed, but you still want to keep that level of sanity, right – mm-hmm <affirmative> – and not find yourself doing the same thing you used to do when you worked for like a large corporation. Like, I don't want to burn myself out again, you know. I want to be able to show my show up with a certain level of empathy but also certain level of edge as well, so – mm-hmm <affirmative> – maybe that's part of it. It's just like, how do I show up in both those settings? Empathy and edge. The double E's.
I like that. The double E's. I didn't really have any like major “What would Ted lasso do” moments this week where I was like, “oh, I have to share that.” But I did hear from a friend of mine, and I thought this was a really lovely one. She was at a stoplight and something happened and she wasn't able to make the turn, and the person behind her just kept honking at her. And so she, like, she had this moment, and I, and she didn't ask the question, “what would Ted Lasso do?” But she had this moment where she was like, “I mean, there's nothing I can do here.” So she like honked back, and then like the person like flipped her off in the mirror or in the mirror I think. And so then like, she just started doing like really funny things in the mirror, right?
Like funny hand movements and whatever. And pretty soon the person behind her was cracking up and like, they just like found this moment that could have gone like a totally different direction. And she just tapped into that like, “well, you know, like, I'm here, I can't do anything. Let me, you know, see like how I can make this, like bring in some play, bring in, you know, whatever.” And I just thought it was such a cute story, and I remember commenting on her thing. I'm like, “this was such a Ted Lasso moment!” And so she's like, “you could totally share that on your thing, on your podcast!”
I love that. I love that.
So, um, so that's my friend Crystal. Yeah. And that was her, her moment. And so all that to say that we can be having moments of road rage and still find, find those Ted Lasso moments to connect with another person in a way that can bring some laughter and diffuse the situation, which I thought was really nice. So.
Oh, that's awesome. So, thanks everyone. Thanks so much for listening. Finishing up episode two. We will talk to you for episode three. I'm very excited about it. Yeah. Later. So thanks everyone for listening. Take care.
Outro Song (54:29)
Thanks so much for listening to another episode of What Would Ted Lasso Do. If you got any nuggets of Ted Lasso wisdom from this episode, try them out in your life and let us know what happens at WWTLD podcast on Instagram or on our website, wwtldpodcast.com, where you'll also find a full transcript of the show. We love hearing what other Ted Heads took away from the episode or details or perspectives that we might have missed.
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Ted Lasso could simply just be another show to binge watch. Or if we challenge ourselves to consistently ask the question, “What would Ted Lasso do?” it could change the trajectory of your life. It has for us.
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