Episode #10- Narco Mindset Podcast - Coronavirus
April 15, 2020
Host: Jorge Valdes Ph.D. - An Author, Speaker, Blogger, Podcaster, and You Tuber
Co-Host: Anthony Petrucci
In this podcast, Dr. Valdes expresses his view on the CORONAVIRUS Pandemic. According to Dr. Valdes, he sees this virus through his lenses formed as a result of a dangerous hard life that included tortures, lengthy prison sentences, forfeiture of millions of dollars. Dr. Valdes is angered at both liberal and conservative media for spreading enormous fear upon people. Yes, our world will never be the same, but that does not necessarily mean that it will end. So if the world will not end then we have two choices, either we buy into the fear and be depressed, or we believe that our God is bigger than this virus and that He would never give us more than we can handle.
In conclusion, Dr. Valdes suggests that instead of letting the media scare us to death, let us find the good in this virus. For one, we now have the opportunity to spend quality time with our children and with our spouses, find joy in doing simple things as a family. But the greatest gift is the opportunity to share our faith with hurting people, to love those who feel unloved, to help all we can, and finally pray for the many people who are homeless, elderly, and alone.
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TRANSCRIPTION OF EPISODE #10
INTRO: Before we watched TV shows and movies on Narcos, and even before Pablo Escobar’s rise to fame, there was one man who was the ultimate Narco. He lived the Narco life of greed, money and power but found a way to reclaim his life, and use his astonishing experiences to empower others to live a life of hope, meaning and redemption. Welcome to the Narco Mindset podcast where Dr. Jorge Valdes shares his journey through life before and after the Medellín Drug Cartel. From torture and multiple prison sentences to how he refocused his life onto a path of principles learned as a Narco, it’s time to share that raw truth with you, right here on the Narco Mindset podcast with your host, Dr. Jorge Valdes.
Jorge: Today on the Narco Mindset podcast, needless to say, that what is right now consuming all of us is this coronavirus. Your past does not define your future. We live in a country that has been so blessed. I will make the best out of this circumstance. He’s never going to give me more than I can handle. The only thing in life we have to fear is fear itself. This is a time that me as a father, as a leader in my home, I want to give my kids hope. We need to realize what is important in life.
Needless to say that what is right now consuming all of us is this coronavirus. So, I want our listeners to understand that what I’m about to say is what applies to me and for my family. It’s only my opinion and it doesn’t mean you need to follow it, it doesn’t mean that it’s the right to an opinion, it’s just what works for my family. One of the things I’m explaining throughout all this podcast is it does not matter what you see in this world or whatever circumstance you’re looking at. What really matters is that first, for you to fully understand that circumstance or that event in life or whatever is going on is for you to understand through what lenses you look at life.
One of the comments I want to make is that I’m going to give you my opinion of how I see this virus today from the lenses of all my experiences throughout my life. One of the things I do in our coaching program is through what I call the Narco Mindset world view. It doesn’t mean that I look at everything as narco but I look at things and events that happen when I lived a narco life and then I can interpret how I went through it. How I survived tortures, how I survived 11 years in prison and then realize that because I created a certain mindset during that period, it’s the mindset that I carried on for the rest of my life.
Your past does not define your future but your past definitely impacts your future. The first thing that I want our listeners to focus on is that right now, I’m very, very, extremely upset at all these media, liberal and conservative. You’ve got liberal media scaring the hell out of people. You’ve got conservative media at the beginning saying there’s nothing wrong, and the interesting thing is that we live in a country that has been so blessed. We have so much, we enjoy so many liberties. We enjoy so many privileges, and we take those for granted. When something that disrupts our life besides the real impact of economic impact for many people that don’t have a job, many businesses that are going to suffer tremendously if the government doesn’t do something, those are real, real issues and the fact that some people will die.
But when we look at that, besides those points of view and not to diminish those in any way or form is it is amazing that ... one of the things that I hear so many comments about is how, “Wow, there’s no more NBA.” “Wow, there’s no more March Madness.” “We can’t go to the movies. We need to stay home.” These are real fears out there. A lot of unknowns. We’ve got to trust two things. We’ve got to trust that our government will do the best that it can. It’s amazing to see that at least during this crisis, we can see both sides, Democrats and Republicans working together because deep down inside, every politician really cares about America and really loves America.
There’s a lot of other things that happen but the first thing I want to focus today is on fear. Here’s the interesting thing; why do we fear so much? Why do we allow the media to instill so much fear in us especially when it comes to things that are totally out of our control? If we do what we’re told to do, keep social distance, stay home, wash our hands, don’t come into contact with anyone that is sick, and look at this period as a time when perhaps for me, for Jorge Valdes, God is asking me, stop. For example, like for me is that it goes back to the day that I got arrested. I was living the life that very few people ever dream of. All of a sudden, I am arrested. Every worldly possession I have is taken from me. I have no idea if I ever would go home again. I don’t have a dollar anymore to be able to buy a candy bar.
Then I had two options. I sat there on my bed, very confused with no ability to know what was going to happen tomorrow, really, in reality, no ability to know what was going to happen five, ten, fifteen years from that day. We look at a virus that probably will go away sometime this year but let’s say it doesn’t go away for a year and a half. That’s nothing in comparison to 15 years. So, I’m lying in this bunk, and I have two choices. Number one, I’m going to get depressed for the next X amount of years, ended up being five, or number two, I’m going to do two things. The first thing I’m going to do is create a mindset where, you know what, I will make the best out of this circumstance. Number two, I had to rely upon God, I couldn’t rely upon anybody else.
What he tells me in the scripture is that he’s never going to give me more than I can handle. Then on top of that, he tells me 385 times, “Fear not.” Now, we can say that the scripture is full of crap like I used to sometimes in life, and that’s your prerogative. But I’m talking for Jorge Valdes. I decided I was just going to trust God. I’m a great believer in one thing. I’m either going to believe everything the bible says or I’ll never believe a damn thing. So, I was always going to trust God that he was telling me not to fear because at the end of the day, what would I accomplish by fearing?
Think about it, will this virus go away if all of America all of a sudden get together in some location on earth, and decide that they’re going to cry and weep about fearing? So, what is fear? I say that the only thing in life we have to fear is fear itself. Number two that I’m going to trust God that he said he was never going to give me more than I can handle. That was tough. I went to bed that morning a multimillionaire. All of a sudden, at night, I don’t have a dollar. I don’t know if my father is going to live or die. I don’t know if I’m ever going to see my children get married. I don’t if I’m ever going to be able to bury and say goodbye to my parents. I knew nothing.
So, I had two choices, I chose to believe God when he said fear not, and I chose to believe God when he said he was not going to give me more than I can handle. You know what, it was amazing because no longer I could rely upon the power I had, no longer I could rely on all the money that I owned, no more could I rely upon all the contacts that I had worldwide. I was stuck in jail looking at many, many years. So, I did the best I could out of it, and I ended up walking out of there, instead of anger and bitter, I walked out of there happy that I was a different person. I got a bachelor’s degree, I finished three-fourths of my master’s, and I formed a different mindset.
I formed a mindset that in reality, there are so many things in this world we have absolutely no control of. So, if we have no control over something then how do we behave? Fear or optimistic or trusting whoever the higher power is for you. If there’s none, just trust that you’ve come out from worse things in your life. I don’t turn on the news anymore. I have no need to listen to them telling me how the world is coming to an end, how we don’t have enough test kits and all of these things. I don’t turn on the news to tell me how the president messed up. Look, I haven’t agreed with this president on many issues but I want to tell you something, I have never stopped praying for him.
That’s what the bible tells me to do, and if I am a Christian, that’s what I’ve got to live by. At the end of the day, right now, what do we solve by criticizing the man? Nothing. How about if we take that time of criticism and we pray for him to succeed because his success will be ours. At the end of the day, no matter how bad people mess up, deep down inside, there’s good nature. I believe there’s a good part of this president that loves this country. He might not do things the way you and I like but that’s irrelevant. That’s who we elected. The bible said that all authorities are there from God so, you know, one of the things I try to look at during this virus is the good in it.
People might stop criticizing, “How the hell can you say there’s any good?” We can’t see our elderly that are in hospitals. We can’t do this, we can’t do that. Our stock market has dropped. Here’s the good I choose; there’s nothing I can do to control any of those factors, none. I can’t control the stock market going up. I can’t control whether the government is going to give me a check or not. I can’t control whether I’m even fired. I can’t control how I’m going to pay my mortgage. I can’t control any of that. I’m just going to trust that God will never give us more than we can handle, and the government will come through for us.
Then at the end of the day, I try to look at the bright side of it. Perhaps for me, I’m so busy doing so many things, this is a time where I get to play games with my kids, board games. This is a time that we get to look and listen to our children. This is a time that I as a father, as a leader of my home, I’m going to give my kids hope. I’m going to not instill more fear. They’re young, they have no idea what’s going on. At the end of the day, everything is going to be all right. We’re the greatest nation on earth. We’ve come through depression, world wars. We’ve lost millions of lives throughout the times. Let us just pray and let us use common sense. Let us listen to the doctors when they tell us. Let us do all we can.
Once we can do all we can, let us not worry and fear about the unknown that we cannot control. It’s not going to make a difference in our lives. It’s going to make us miserable, it’s going to make us bitter and then instead, let us choose to find good in this horror, and let us choose to realize that the world has changed. If we’ve got change, we need to adapt. We need to adapt, we need to realize what is important in life? Is it two cars? Is it a vacation home? Is it a brand new car? What is important in life?
For me, the most important thing is to do the best I can for humanity. To me, the most important thing is that the day I die, I just pray that I hear those words, “Well done, faithful servant.” Now, listen to what I just said for me, for Jorge Valdes. I’m not preaching, I’m just telling you what works for me. My old saying, if the shoe fits, wear it. If not, just get another pair of shoes. Listen, fear not, we will get through this. We will learn from this. We will be a better country. We will be a better nation. If nothing else, we’re going to learn to love each other and to learn that yes, we can have differences with people and a crisis like this that we realize those differences that are separating us are so stupid and irrelevant.
Who cares how we look at our political system? Who cares if some people are liberal, others are conservative? Whatever is good for you is good for you. I’m going to tell you what’s really important, love. That’s what changed my heart, that’s what changed my life, falling in love with a Jewish carpenter that told me to fear not and told me that he died for me and that I had a chance. Again, my friends, what I’m telling you today is what works for me and my family. In this horrible time, in this crisis where I see my investment portfolio dropped, unbelievable. I realize that you know what, one day, I didn’t have a dollar. One day I walked out of prison with nothing, 40 years old. So, the fact that I have a roof over my head is a huge blessing.
Pray for our political leaders. Don’t criticize. Don’t fall in the same trap. Don’t call your friends and tell them to fear. Why? What difference is it going to make? Why instead just call those that you haven’t called and say, “I’ve got time to call you and tell you I love you.” Spend time with your family. Spend time with your children. I see people going crazy because they’ve got to stay home. Man, I lived 11 years in a cell, 3*8, so my house now, it’s a lot bigger than that cell. I’ve got my family, I’ve got my children, I’ve got my freedom, I’ve got the health that I’ve got today, and if it goes away tomorrow, you know what, I can’t control it, so why fear it?
If tomorrow, God forbid, I catch this virus to a point that it takes my life, well, you know what, I lived a long life, and I thank God that I’ve done all that I could and that I loved all those that I could, and I’ve helped all those that I could. At the end of the day, I fear not death because for me, stupid Jorge, I think I’m going to a better place. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not in any rush to get there but if a time comes, just time to go. God bless you, have a wonderful day, and fear not.
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OUTRO: We’ve come to the conclusion of this episode of the Narco Mindset podcast but your path towards hope, meaning and redemption continues. For more information and resources to help you on your path towards finding a life built on integrity, honor and truth, head to jorgevaldesphd.com and join our community. We appreciate you joining us for this episode and look forward to helping you find your turning point right here on the Narco Mindset podcast.