Recent Episodes and Interviews

Welcome Back!

Ride the Elephant Today continues as Bryan McKinley presents his thoughts on important life questions - including why he should continue the program.

Silencing Negations and Speaking the Precepts of Character

A special episode this week. Ray and Bryan highlight key precepts for the examined life.

Part 2 Challenges in Education - Preparing Today's Youth for Life in This Fast Pace World

Ray McKinley continues his discussion with Bill Turner, the Director of College and Career Readiness Programming at Troy Schools in Troy, Michigan, to discuss the challenges facing educators to prepare today’s youth for this fast paced world. How we need to transition educators and students alike from a “fixed mindset” to a “growth mindset.” This is a great opportunity for you to think about what needs to be done to better prepare the youth of today to pick up the baton and carry it forward to the next generation. The first step is "To be apart of the conversation."

Part 1 Challenges in Education - Preparing Today's Youth for Life in This Fast Pace World

Ray McKinley invites Bill Turner, the Director of College and Career Readiness Programming at Troy Schools in Troy, Michigan, to discuss the challenges facing educators to prepare today’s youth for this fast paced world. How we need to transition educators and students alike from a “fixed mindset” to a “growth mindset.” This is a great opportunity for you to think about what needs to be done to better prepare the youth of today to pick up the baton and carry it forward to the next generation. The first step is "To be apart of the conversation."

The Science of Gratitude - It's More Than Saying

Do you want to create more edifying relationships? How different will your day be when you begin and end it with a grateful heart? Try gratefulness on and see what happens!

Values Clarification - What is Most Important!

Ray McKinley and his son Bryan discuss values and values clarification. To be real and authentic is to prioritize your values.

Soul Searching – “The Inspired-Mind.” Ray McKinley and Naomi Rhode discuss inspiration - “The Spirit Within”

Is inspiration different from what typically motivates us. - Is it different from our goals and dreams. - Is it different from conforming to what we think others expect. - Is it different from being controlled by fear of rejection. The Inspired-mind is our spirit, it is our soul. What is your soul calling out for you to do and what prevents you from hearing it?

What Defines You - Are You Defined By What You Do or By Who you Are Being?

This is a very important question to examine: - Are you trying to "do" what meets the approval and expectation of your parents, friends, coworkers, as well as conform to the social narrative of the day? OR Are you 'Being" authentic and true to your personally held core beliefs, values, and principles?

Your Character is the Most Valuable Possession You Will Ever Have - What Are You Doing to Become a Person of Character

Being a person of character requires focused intention to evaluate your character and strive to be a better person. Dr. McKinley and Bryan discuss ways to develop your character as well as the character of your children and coworkers.

Are You Being a Conformist or Are You Being Real and Authentic?

Are You Being a Conformist or Are You Being Real and Authentic? The answer lies in: 1. What you believe. 2. What you value. 3. What predefined principles you ascribe too. Discover the ways you can take charge of your life and stop being bullied into doing what others think you should do.

7 Ways to Break Old Habits and Patterns that Keep You Stuck

Most of the time we think about what is expected by our parents and friends, instead of thinking about what we truly believe and value. Listen to 7 Action Steps you can take to break old habits and start living a more inspired life.

How Do You Want Others to See You? Who Are You Trying to Impress? What is the Image are You Trying to Project?

Your self-image is the mask you wear; it is how you want others to see you. Self-esteem is the level of respect you have for yourself. This is hugely important for each of us to know what is most important - our self-image or our self-esteem. Self-image is something we pursue in form of achievement, accolades, and success. Self-esteem on the other hand ensues as an outcome of our efforts and character.

Stop Just Praising Achievement and Start Affirming Effort and Character

We have created a generation that is so dependent on the recognition and praise of others, that they have lost their self-determination and are no longer inspired by their own dreams, passions, beliefs, values and principles. Dr. McKinley discusses what we can do to help reverse this trend.

What Best Describes What You Do - I have to ... or - I get to ...?

What is motivating you? When you get up in the morning and climbed out of bed, do you say to yourself "I have to go to work (school) today." Or do you say "I get to go to work (school) today." Ray McKinley discusses what is at the core of motivation.

5 Ways to Create Great Relationships

How are you at creating great relationships? It’s not just picking better friends - It is “being” a better friend yourself. Listen in and learn of 5 Ways to Create Great Relationships!

I Know What's Best, Therefore I Should Tell You!

Do you know people that are always giving opinions about what you should be doing? They think they know what's best, therefore they should tell you! Even if you don't want to hear it. Their attitude is I'm right, you’re wrong! They got it all figured out. Are you one of those people? Dr. McKinley discusses the problems with presumption and projection.

Is Anxiety a Result of Our Own Doing?

I believe we create much of an anxious feeling when - We seek approval from others and fail to receive it; We blame and make excuses instead of taking personal responsibility; We are presumptuous and value-judge, instead of being accepting and tolerant. We procrastinate and put off what we have agreed to do.

How We Are Controlled By Fear-based Beliefs

Ray McKinley considers the BIG Question -Do your fears determine what you believe, or do your beliefs determine what you fear? How understanding the origins of fears can help mitigate stress and anxiety in your life.

Overcoming a Victim Mindset

There is a level of blaming and excuse-making that is so deeply ingrained in the mindset of an individual that it is nearly impossible to change. It becomes so chronically expressed that it permeates a person’s mindset, personality, and social expression. This is the perpetual victim. Perpetual victims seem to be doomed to live a life of victimhood, and it is almost impossible to see it ever changing. For many victims, victimhood is a life sentence.

Your Unforgiving Heart - What is it Costing You?

What is unforgiveness costing you? Who is hurting more - You? Or the person you will not forgive? What role does unforgiveness play in our wokeness? How is unforgiveness holding you in bondage?

Stop Making Excuses!

Ray McKinley and Bryan McKinley discuss how the use of excuses make us look weak and incapable, untrustworthy, and ineffective leaders in business and at home. Leaders take personal responsibility instead of making excuses, thereby earning the respect and esteem of others. Excuse making is habitual and common in most relationships - Is it time for you to make a new decision? Ray offers 4 strategies to stop being an excuse maker.

Paul Kohler Overcomes the Elephant in the Room - After Losing His Hands in a Horrific Accident

Paul Kohler joins Ray McKinley for an engaging conversation about being the victim of an accident that was someone else's fault. Paul tells the story of losing his hands during his college years, crushing his dreams of being an art teacher. The juxtaposition of emotions that Paul had to wrestle with from sadness, anger, bitterness, resentment, and blame - to happiness, joy, fulfillment, and personal responsibility. Listen to this inspiring story filled with blessings and love.

Living the Examined Life - What is Your Blaming Nature Costing You?

How then shall we live. Ray McKinley and his son Bryan consider the examined life - Looking at the damaging effects of blame and what you can do about it.

#26 - Is Your Life a Series of Problems or a Series of Opportunities?

Ray and Bryan McKinley discuss breaking through the barriers of the injustices in life. The importance of seeing life as a series of opportunities instead of a series of problems.

#25 Eradicating the Negations that Consume Internal Dialogue - Taking Control of Negative Thoughts

The beliefs, values, and principles determine how we respond in every situation. The negative thoughts we have in our mind reveal deep seated negative beliefs, many of which are not true. However, if we never reflect on the negative beliefs in our mind, our behavior will never change. Holding onto bitterness, anger, hatred, fear, blame, judgment, and unforgiveness will hold us back and keep us stuck in our lament, sadness, and victimhood. Until you change the negations in your mind, you will continue to get the same outcomes in your life over and over again.

#24 What are You Believing; What are You Choosing

Ray and Bryan McKinley discuss the examined life and how placing purposeful intentions on eradicating negative beliefs about ourselves will transform our relationships and our way of thinking. Building off Napoleon Hill's famous premise “Whatever Your Mind Can Conceive and Believe, It Can Achieve.”

#23 - The Absence of Critical Thinking in Our Culture

Ray and Bryan McKinley discuss the absence of critical thinking in today's culture. Is it just easier to conform? Is the social narrative of the day so deafening that we just go along with it? Are you one of those people that do what you "should" do (according to everyone else)? Are you allowing skillful manipulators to exert control over you? If you are, you may want to consider developing your critical thinking skills.

#22 How Then Shall We Live

Ray and Bryan McKinley ponder the question - How then shall we live? Deciding to live an examined life begins with critical thinking - thinking at a higher level about what we truly believe and value, and creating a life based in thoughtful intentions based on personally held core beliefs.

#21 What Do You Do When...?

Ray McKinley and Bryan McKinley discuss personal ethics. We often have expectations of others, but what are the expectations we have for ourselves?

#20 A Generation of Entitlement

What has a generation of enabling and entitlement been costing you? How will you break the pattern of entitlement - or has it become the new normal?

#19 Agreements Are Not Expectations and Expectations Are Not Agreements

On this week's episode of Ride the Elephant Today! Ray McKinley discusses what Agreement-Based Relationships are. He gives us some tools for how to navigate potential challenges that arise from misunderstandings within our Agreement-Based Relationships. He also gives the distinction between what agreements and expectations are within our various relationships.

#18 The Inspired Mind

What is an Inspired Mind? Ray McKinley and Bryan discuss the mindset of the inspired vs. the mindset of the conformist and how to change our habitual response that keep us stuck in the same old patterns of the past. Learn the 4 keys to being authentic instead of continuing to conform to the expectations of others.

#17 Motivation vs. Inspiration

Ray McKinley and his son Bryan discuss motivation. Society, family and friends have defined “success”. However, to be inspired is to be driven from the inside. To be inspired leads to “true success”. Listen in on the conversation and see what fits for you.

#16 Stop Conforming to the Expectations of Others and Be Inspired by Personally Held Core Convictions

Ray McKinley discusses motivation with his son, Bryan. Being motivated by the expectations of others is to live a life of conformity. Is that what you want? Most of us don't even realize we are being manipulated by the expectations of others. Ray and Bryan discuss how to transition to being inspired by personally held core convictions.

#15 Self-image is the Picture You Attempt to Project to Others; Self-esteem is the Level of Respect You have for Yourself. Why is that Important.

Ray McKinley discusses with his son Bryan the difference between self-image and self-esteem. And why it is important to teach your children the difference.

#14 The Damaging Effects of Praise

Ray McKinley discusses the damaging effects of stand alone praise with his son Bryan McKinley. As a parent, what message are you sending with approving, stand alone praise? As a teacher and friend how is praise effecting the person being praised? Is there a better message to send that is more edifying?

#13 How is Your Need for Approval Abrogating Your Personally Held Core Beliefs?

Ray McKinley and Bryan McKinley discuss how the desire for approval abrogates personally held core convictions. What do you really believe as you strive for the approval of others? Learn how to raise your children without an approval addiction?

#12 What is a Value-judging Nature Costing You?

Ray McKinley and his son, Bryan, have a thought provoking conversation about value judging. They discuss what value judging is and the cost of it within relationships, answering the BIG question- How do I stop value judging, and how would it benefit me?

#11 Presumption and Projection - Do We Have a Better Choice?

Ray McKinley and his son discuss the cultural habit of presumption and projection. Answering the BIG question - What is presumption and projecting costing us and what can we do to mitigate it?

#10 Surrounding Yourself with Great Mentors

Ray McKinley has a lively discussion with Kyrstyn Dean on how transformational leadership begins with self-discovery and new awareness. Seeking out wise counsel so important for personal growth and success.

#9 The New Challenge Facing Parents as They Prepare Students for College and Beyond

Ray McKinley host guest Julie Buuck, Director of Student Life at Faith Lutheran Middle School and High School in Las Vegas, Nevada to reflect on the challenges facing youth today. They discuss what needs to be done to better prepare students for a life of authenticity, contribution, and personal responsibility.

#8 Is Anxiety a Choice?

Ray McKinley addresses the issue of anxiety with his son Bryan McKinley. They delve into the question - Is anxiety a choice? Join in on the discussion and consider strategies to mitigate anxiety.

#7 Fear-based Beliefs Keep Us from Experiencing True Success

Ray and Bryan McKInley discuss how beliefs based in fear take control of our thinking and cause us to negatively respond to the situations in our life. It's a tough talk to have, because we all feel so justified in our fear. The problem is that so many of our fears are not even true; they may have been true in the past, but are they true today. How do fear-based beliefs keep us from experiencing "true success"?

#6 The Victim Mindset

Dr. McKinley converses with Bryan McKinley about the victim-mindset and what we can do to mitigate it.

#5 Eradicating the Excuse-makers from Your Life

Dr. McKinley converses with Bryan McKinley about the propensity of excuse-making in our culture today. It is another elephant in the room that we just don't want to talk about. However, excuse-making is debilitating to the health of a culture, and as a leader, you need to do something about it. Listen to actionable steps for mitigating excuse-makers in your culture.

#4 The Blame Pandemic is Today's Elephant in the Room

Dr. Ray McKinley has a heartfelt conversation about blame with his son Bryan. Blame and a blaming mindset is a pandemic in our society and we don't seem to have a vaccine for it. What is blame costing you? What is blaming costing your workplace culture? What is blame costing your family unit? Ray and Bryan discuss ways to mitigate a blaming mindset during these tumultuous times.

#3 The Tension Within and How Words Matter

Ray McKinley and Blake McKinley reflect on "How Words Matter." We presume that we understand what others are truly feeling by the words they use. Not so, we all have different life's experience that give a different meaning to the emotive words we use. Ray and Blake discuss why this is so important in our relationships at home and at work.

#2 On an Island Unto Myself

Ray McKinley interviews guest Dr. Grant McKinley about the elephant in the room in his life that resulted in "being on an island unto himself." When it comes to dealing with significant events, we have two choices; we can lament the circumstances for a lifetime or overcome adversities we have faced in our life. What are you choosing? Grant was denying "the elephant in the room" and had to burden the consequences of his decisions, until he became aware of why his life was falling apart. Join in the conversation with Ray and Grant.

#1 Ride the Elephant Today - The Inaugural Podcast

Dr. Ray McKinley presents his inaugural podcast and self-discloses the most significant emotional event of his life, the death of his brother Bryan. An event that was covered up for 30 years and never discussed. The cost of not talking about the elephant in the room can keep you stuck for a lifetime. If self-reflection is important to you, join in the weekly conversation about transforming the cascade of beliefs that determine how you respond in every situation.