10. Josh Duntz on How to Prepare for Change

February 02, 2022

10. Josh Duntz on How to Prepare for Change
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In this episode, Tim and Brock talk with Josh Duntz.

Get a weekly episode breakdown, sneak peak of the next episode, and other resources in your inbox for free at https://scuttlebutt.substack.com/.

Josh is a former EOD tech for 10 years in the Navy and is now an account executive at Shift as well as the founder and CEO of Stasis. 

We talk through the physical challenges that come with working in EOD and how those led to an increased focus on health, in particular breath work. Josh goes on to explain why he believes veterans make such strong candidates in the work force but also as entrepreneurs. Working at Shift, he gets direct insight into filling active duty and veterans into prominent companies. We also discuss Josh's Ayahuasca retreat to Mexico and the importance of being willing to put in the work in order to change your life. 

You can follow Josh at @JoshDuntz
Shift - Career Advancement for Military Members, Past and Present: Shift.org
Stasis - Optimal health and performance starts with a single breathe: Stasis.life


Whether you’re in the service for four years or twenty, you have learned skills, led teams, and learned what it takes to execute under pressure. While those past successes are valuable, they don’t always translate to a life or career when you get your DD214.

Join Tim and Brock as they break down the skills and strategies current and former military members are using to build a successful careers on the outside the service.

Follow along with us.
• Tim: @Mccaurthor, https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbJ5Ly07sxv2lrofAiN16aw
• Brock: @BrockHBriggs
• Instagram: Scuttlebutt_Podcast
• Send us an email: scuttlebuttpod1@gmail.com


Brock Briggs  0:18  

Hello and welcome to the Scuttlebutt podcast. Our guest today is Josh Duntz. Josh is a former EOD and now an account executive at Shift, as well as the founder and CEO of his own company Stasis. Josh, welcome to the show.

Josh Duntz 0:32  

Hey, guys. Yeah, thanks for having me. I appreciate you for the conversation today.

Tim McCarthy  0:36  

Us, too, man.

Brock Briggs  0:38  

Yeah, it's gonna be good. You wanna give us a five minute backstory? What led you to join? Tell us about your time in and what led you here?

Josh Duntz  0:47  

Sure. So I grew up in Tampa, Florida area. I just kind of typical after high school, went to college up in Tallahassee Community College up there. I didn't get into Florida State, had a couple of buddies get into Florida State. Some of us that didn't all enrolled in the college up there, that community college did that for like a semester. I quickly realized that college wasn't gonna be right for me at that time in my life. 

So quickly moved back home and kind of was ready to get out of the house again as soon as possible. So never had kind of like grown up thinking the military was gonna be the path that I chose to go down by any means. And I had another buddy that I went to high school with that had joined the Navy. And I was just talking to him. He's like, “Yeah, just go talk to a recruiter or whatever. So I ended up gonna talk to a recruiter, kind of next thing is, you know, whatever. Five, six months later, I'm gonna bootcamp with a Navy contract and the rest is history, I guess.

Brock Briggs  1:56  

Yeah. How old were you when you just got to college?

Josh Duntz  2:01  

I was 18 when I left. I was 19 when I initially like went to boot camp in the Navy.

Brock Briggs  2:09  

Okay, so I'm assuming you're in Florida. You're in close proximity to Florida State. The distractions, I'm sure, were a plenty.

Josh Duntz  2:21  

Yeah, at that. I just was like, probably a fairly typical, like, 18 year old super irresponsible. I'm not ready to live like on my own by any means and didn't have like money to go to college or anything like that, you know. The Navy seemed like a really good idea at the time and they were offering $40,000 signing bonuses. If you've made it through EOD school at 19, that was pretty intriguing to me at the moment.

Tim McCarthy  2:50  

Oh, yeah. I feel like I thought my story was like so unique joining but as we do these podcasts, I realized that everybody has one of two stories. I got to college, realized it wasn't for me or like going into the military as a family thing. So..

Josh Duntz


Tim McCarthy

That's what I did. Like, so I am not special, I guess.

Brock Briggs  3:12  

Yeah, that sign on bonuses, certainly alluring. We've talked in several episodes about how like so many of the people in the military come from like pretty traditional, maybe blue collar families. And so you start seeing the number signs and you're like, “Oh, wow, you know, what would I do with $40,000? What did you do with your sign on bonus? I guess we have to ask.

Josh Duntz  3:37  

Nothing. I have nothing to show for it. I don't know where stupid stuff probably like I remember. I bought like a garage to him, which was you know, a good investment in my books, but a dirt bike like just toys, you know.

Brock Briggs  3:56  

That sounds about right. 

Josh Duntz


Brock Briggs

Were you, I guess, were you into sports growing up? Other than like the sign on bonus, the EOD pipeline is I'm assuming fairly rigorous and like at least to get in. Was that something? Were you competitive in that way early on, or I guess what brought you to that?

Josh Duntz  4:20  

Yeah, definitely. I grew up, I played like every sport there was growing up. In high school, I played basketball and then football was like the main sport and physical for me. But yeah, I was super competitive. I never really like was super into running or anything like that, like swimming. I grew up, you know, like surfing and just around the oceans. I was pretty good. I was like an above average swimmer just because half the people like I've never even seen an ocean before you know. So like the diving portion of EOD school. 

School was super cake to me which is like the most difficult part for a lot of people. That just because you just have to be comfortable, like in the water and stressful environments and stuff. And I grew up like doing that shit like dialing, just, you know, for fun and stuff. So I was like super fortunate not like that, but I was always like a real weak, like, runner compared to a lot of the dudes that like came from, you know. A lot of dudes like swam or ran in like high school and college. The officers were always in super good shape, but you kind of just like, get it, you know, do enough to survive at the moment. Anyway, so.

Tim McCarthy  5:35  

What is the diving training look like? I mean, is it similar to BUD/S, where you're doing all this, like crazy being tied up type stuff? Or are you scuba diving? I mean, what is that like?

Josh Duntz  5:49  

Yeah, both. You do, we did a lot of our like water confidence stuff is what I think they call it. In dive prep, which is backup in Great Lakes and like, it's what you go to right after you graduate boot camp before you go to dive school. It's like it weeds out a lot of it like half the class. But it's also supposed to like prepare you for dive school a little bit. But yeah, you do like the drown proofing and all that stuff up there. 

And then the dive school you do. You know, the traditional pool hits, you probably attend like YouTube clips of stuff like that. And then a lot of it's just like learning about, like, all the medical stuff that goes with diving like dive physics. It's very, like curriculum and like academic based on top of just like all the physical cool stuff that you have to do. And then EOD school is like all academic base. There's, like we worked out I think, like one time a week as a class going through a year of high school, and it was kind of up to you to just, you know, stay in shape.

Tim McCarthy  6:56  

Oh, wow! That's not what you would expect. At least like if.. 

Brock Briggs

I wasn't expecting that. 

Tim McCarthy

Yeah, like in my head, I would think it's, I guess I'm like equating it to, like I said, like BUD/S, where they're just like beating the shit out of you all the time. But I guess it's a lot more in class stuff. So that's interesting.

Josh Duntz 7:17  

Yeah, so like dive prep and dive school are kinda like the real physical courses during the EOD pipeline. And then once you get to EOD school, it's like 12 hour PowerPoints every day. You probably have like three tests a week, and you have two chances to pass these each tab. If you fail the second time, like typically, depending on how much they like you either get like one roll back where you start from the beginning, or they'll just like, kick people out like after that first. We call a double pat basically, like your pants are failing the same test twice. So it's like really rigorous, like in the classroom studying just like all day long and doing like a lot of practical based, like tests and stuff, too. 

Tim McCarthy  8:08  

Are those tests pretty hard? Or are they because like when Brock and I did very similar jobs in the Navy. And I remember his school in particular was known to be more difficult than mine. But it was the same thing, like if you fell the same test twice and some of the tests were like really difficult.

Josh Duntz  8:28  

Yeah, there was definitely like that school set up by divisions basically. And like, certain divisions were known to be like, really hard, where everyone was like, nervous to go through them. Some of them were easier. And then not only that, but it depended on what tests you got, right. They were all different. 

Tim McCarthy

Oh, gotcha. 

Josh Duntz

For the practical tests, they were all different for the written test. I believe they were all the same, but like the practicals are the really the ones. And it's like EOD is kind of funny, because like there's certain sets of rules and like safety precautions that you have to take, but there's not necessarily one way to solve the problem, right? So there's a lot of like getting you there. And it would depend on what instructor you got, like how closely they were gonna grade you for certain things and stuff like that. So it's kind of a lot of guessing game out of it, too. 

And then the other thing is, it's a 10 month long school and like I said, you're doing three tests a week, probably. So you're looking at just volume wise, like it's hard to stay that locked on for that length of time. I think was a lot of guys had trouble in the school kind of progressively got harder as you go because it's just getting more advanced, you know.

Tim McCarthy


Josh Duntz

It's just like a grind to make it through that school. I think the attrition rate when I was going through was like in the high 70s, like around 80%. So my class started. And, like we had an old Navy class, started EOD school, I think with 25 people. And we all got rolled back like no one made it straight through without getting rolled back. And I think like out of that 25, like five of us actually making it through. So pretty high attrition rate.

Brock Briggs  10:22  

So I guess after school and after making it through all that, did you? I'd imagine is EOD, one of those types of, I guess jobs or rates where you're either like, in Norfolk or in San Diego is that like..

Josh Duntz  10:37  

Yeah, basically. That those are like so we have kind of shore duty and sea duty, just like probably every other day. Like your sea duty commands are in San Diego, Norfolk, Guam and Thane. So one of those four spots is basically where you're gonna end up after graduating school and I was in Norfolk the whole time.

Brock Briggs  10:59  

Okay. Yeah, that's where I currently live, so. Yeah and that's where Tim and I both met. So, yeah. Are you back down in Florida now?

Josh Duntz  11:12  


Brock Briggs  11:15  

Do you feel like sticking around the great Hampton Roads area?

Tim McCarthy 11:18  

Oh, it's so nice there.

Josh Duntz

Yeah, I mean, Virginia Beach was alright. But yeah, when I got out, I was, that town is it's like all military now. And I was ready to kind of start a new chapter in my life. And I felt like getting out of there was the best prior decision so far.

Brock Briggs  11:37  

Did you get the chance to deploy after you had gotten out? Or did you have a six year contract?

Josh Duntz  11:46  

So I was in for like, 10 years. 

Brock Briggs


Josh Duntz

I did. Yeah, I did three deployments, out of Millvina six, where I was and then I finished off my career at a shore det in Norfolk, where we kind of worked a lot with like the local palm enforcement. And we would pick up stuff like Allentown. It was really chill spot to be like the last couple of years because I knew I was getting out. So it allowed me to get my finish up, like my college got a Bachelor's degree, and kind of just really set myself up for that transition, which was nice. A lot of people don't have that luxury of like being at a show command when you're getting out. So it was really nice. I got super lucky and took advantage of it.

Brock Briggs  12:33  

I think that that's something that's under talked about is when you do or if you are gonna have like a period of a few years where it's gonna be easy. Like you really need to put the pedal down on getting some personal or professional development stuff, whatever, if it's a degree or certifications or whatever. You really need to take advantage of those when they're offered to you.

Josh Duntz  12:57  

Yeah, I got super lucky with like, just having some dudes I looked up to that got out before me. That I had like kind of role models and mentors to follow because I talk about that sometime. Like I think it's hilarious that you go to get out of the military. And maybe, you know, the person that's in charge of that is likely some admin person from your shop, or whatever. And like they've been active duty their whole time. So they've never gotten out of the military and like they're supposed to be in charge of you successfully getting out of the military, kind of blows my mind a little bit. That's how it works.

Brock Briggs  13:33  

Now, that's literally, we were talking about this before we started recording. But so much of what we are trying to do with this podcast is like, hopefully something that somebody could listen to, I guess maybe before they got out or some things to start thinking about. Because like you said, the people that are guiding you on your transition out are either trying to convince you to stay in because you're already at 10 years, and you're halfway there. You're just 10 more years away from retirement. Or there are people that have never done the process and actually have no input or legitimate advice about how things actually work like using your GI bill or any of that.

Tim McCarthy 14:17  

Well, it’s always like your chief or your first class and their advice is always have a plan. Okay, what should my plan be, chief? I don't know. I couldn't tell you. I've been in for 24 years, but you should probably make a plan like graded by itself. I'll come up with a couple of them. They're just like really other than what is it called TAPS? There's really like no guidance for like what that plan should be, you know?

Josh Duntz 14:42  

Yeah. Yeah. And luckily, there's, you know, so many nonprofits and for profit companies that are out there now, building companies and organizations around kind of solving this problem with transition. So compared to like five years ago, it's completely changed with how many resources there are. I think the military could do a lot better job of, like, formalizing that or partnering with some of these companies to come in and kind of take over the TAPS process and take it into the 21st century.

Tim McCarthy  15:20  

We were talking about that on a different episode, but it's like, there's seems to be so many resources out there. But they're so hard to find, you know. Like, where do you like, unless you somebody's done it and like, gives you the heads up of like, “Oh, like, go check this organization out.” Like, nobody talks about it. They're just, they're hard to find, you know.

Josh Duntz  15:43  

Yeah, for sure.

Brock Briggs  15:45  

We ended up sticking around for 10 years. What was the trigger pole on? Just knew that you didn't want to do another 10? Or?

Josh Duntz  15:55  

Yeah, like I was coming up to that point where it was, you know, that is kind of like a milestone that 10 year mark, right? Because you are halfway there. So I was like, “Alright, if I'm like, if I stay in any longer, I might as well stay in into 20.” And just like with where I was, I guess, like, in my career, I wasn't really happy with like the community. And I don't know, I just didn't wanna. I wasn't ready to commit my life to like another 10 years. I was ready for whatever was next. I just wasn't happy anymore, you know. And there was other stuff that I was, into like tech, and like, I saw that kind of industry like blowing up and I was like, “I'm gonna go try to do something in that, you know.”

Brock Briggs  16:40  

Well, I guess, can you talk a little bit about that? What were your goals? And what about tech was appealing to you? And how did you chase that down?

Josh Duntz  16:53  

Yeah, I mean, I don't know. Well like I guess originally were the thing that was like, that's what I wanted to do. But it was just like, you know, you see, the companies that are kind of changing, like, the landscape of the world are all in tech, right? And we saw it was like starting to come into the military. And there's a lot of like, cool tech that you get to use as an EOD tech with like, robots and identification equipment for like chemical and biological stuff. 

And even with like homemade explosives, like cool kits and stuff. So even though like I was, obviously that, like intrigued me to do the job, so I was kind of into it. And then yeah, getting now, you talked about Mike before we started. So he was, I don't know if I said this, but he was also a EOD officer in the Navy, and him and I actually went through EOD school together. So I've known him, you know, for a decade now. And he got out a couple years before me and started Shift. So he was like, just someone I kind of like a role model and mentor that I had. And I was like, oh, I didn't even know that was possible when I joined the Navy to like, get out and like start your own company and raise venture capital. You know what I mean? Like I didn't know that was possible.

And I like saw people that I admired. And like people that came from kind of the same background as me, although like Mike, he's not the same background. Like he went to the Naval Academy, and then got his Master's from Harvard before he joined the Navy. So we're in other leagues that far, but you know, that's coming from the same community. And just like doing really cool stuff in the private sector, and I was like, “I want to go try to do some of that shit.”

Brock Briggs 18:40  

Yeah, well, you hit on something there that's so vital is knowing what your options are. Like the we had this reference another episode, but we talked with this guy, Nate, like, goes out and like buys businesses like pre existing businesses. Or, like you said, raising money to start your own company like presenting that to somebody who's in the military, their eyes would probably be this figure out, they'd be like, “ Ah, what?” You know, and that's a tremendous failure. I think of on the military as part of, that they're not trying to set you up to get out. But there should be something that helps you become aware of those things. And it almost takes you getting out and like really being serious about your career to like, start looking for those things and getting down the rabbit hole on it.

Josh Duntz  19:35  

Yeah, for sure. I mean, there's like, there's a lot of like data out there about how much more successful like veteran entrepreneurs are advised, like people that have just kind of went from college into the private sector. And so it's cool. Yeah, I completely agree. Like, we all know the military is never gonna be in like the business of transition, right? Like they're in the business of recruiting and retaining talent. But there is just like a gap and like, how available all this stuff is, you know that. I feel like it's not a hard solution or problem to solve, it's all like that, you know. They could go out there and that like all these resources and stuff like that and just give people a better idea or hear the options out there like you said. 

Tim McCarthy


Brock Briggs  20:30  

Well, you kind of, we have been talking about Shift a little bit here. But do you want to kind of give us the pitch on what you do now, with Shift? What the company does, what you do?

Josh Duntz  20:43  

Yeah, sure. So like I said, it's a career advancement company for military members, past and present. And basically, what that means is we find, like the top military talent, we train them, or upskill them. And then we feature them to organizations that wanna hire military veterans, so kind of a three step process there. 

So we have products for active duty military personnel transitioning, and then also veterans that may already be in the private sector, and are either looking to change industries or kind of just switch their job title in this space already. And there's a cool, one of the really cool programs that that's being done right now is called Defense Ventures. And that's for active duty personnel. And basically, that pairs them up with a venture capital firm or VC backed startup, where they do I believe, it's six weeks, it's six days a week, like immersion programs, where these companies or VCs give them like a big project to complete during that sprint phase. 

And then the goal of bringing back like the latest and greatest technology into the military. So these are like people that are either, you know, not really thinking about transitioning or early on in their career. So they're gonna go do this, and then go back into the military as an active duty personnel and kind of hopefully apply some cool innovation stuff that they learned at those companies. 

And then there's like transition programs for people that don't know what they wanna do next.  We have a program called Navigating Next, that's four weeks long. And basically, the idea is to you know, in that four weeks, you figure out what you wanna do in the private sector. And then there's a follow on four week program called Career Accelerator that's basically an industry immersion, and job functions specific program. So after you figure out what you wanna do, then you go into this and kind of do a deep dive into what that specific role is. And then once you graduate that, we have a software piece, all of those candidates getting listed on that are hiring partners have access to have basically a simplified way to hire military talent.

Tim McCarthy  23:08  

It does the ..

Josh Duntz

My pitch. 

Tim McCarthy

No, that sounds really cool. Where's the money coming from? From the veteran or from the company?

Josh Duntz  23:19  

Yeah, the companies pay us like a subscription fee to have access to that platform that they hire people off of.

Tim McCarthy  23:27  

Right on. And then with the program for somebody who's in actively, do you guys partner up with the military? Where the, you know, their command basically says, “Okay, you go to this for the next eight weeks,” or is it like on their own free time?

Josh Duntz  23:43  

No, yeah, it's a DOD run program. So it was launched by MathWorks, a couple of years ago, if you're familiar with them. They're basically like the innovation arm slash venture capitalists of the Air Force. 

Tim McCarthy


Josh Duntz

So yeah, they run that program, but it's a DOD contract that pays for that.

Brock Briggs  24:04  

It’s pretty known that the Air Force had access to all the good stuff, you know.

Tim McCarthy  24:08  


Josh Duntz

Yeah, no, they're like crushing it as far as all the like the app works program is really cool.

Brock Briggs  24:17  

Yeah, that sounds super interesting. And I can't even imagine that the value that that provides, like we've been talking about, there's such a large opportunity there. And just even a simple solution might work. But this sounds like it's hitting a lot of the critical points. I guess, how long have you been working with Shift? And then what I guess what do you do? And can you give us a sense for maybe company size or how many people you've worked with, or I guess the company has worked with?

Josh Duntz  24:50  

Yes, typically, it's been around for like five or six years now. Right now, I think we're at like 25 or 30 employees. So it's a seed stage startup. So pretty early on, in like the company's lifecycle, I've been there for, I think four or five months now. I'm on the partnership team. So I'm like an on the sales team. And basically, it's my job to go out and find these companies that we're partnering with. So that's what I do on a daily basis. 

A lot of other veterans are with the company, which is super cool to see. I did a skill bridge internship with a different company, when I was getting out through Shift, actually. And it was the company was based out in San Francisco, and it was a cool experience. But I was just like, wasn't in love with kind of, I guess, their mission or what they were doing. Whereas with Shift, it's like a no brainer for me to get back into that. And I know the space really well. And like, I have a good military network. So I really like what I do over there. So it's been super cool so far.

Brock Briggs  26:06  

So I guess on being on the sales component, you probably come to these companies that are, you know, you guys want to target like probably high tech companies or maybe cutting edge companies to transition veterans to it. What is the pitch that you give to them? Like, what, how do you position veterans? And why are they a good pick, I guess, for these companies?

Josh Duntz  26:31  

Yeah. It's a good question. It depends on the company, I guess, you know, on a few factors, like some companies have worked with veterans in the past. And like they've been high performers at their company. So those companies are really easy, because they understand kind of those intangible soft skills that a lot of veterans can bring them to organizations. 

Something that is true for a lot of people is like, you're not gonna have maybe the exact skill set or industry experience of your peers that are competing with you for the job. So that's the hardest part that we're dealing with right now is kind of like educating these people and finding companies that understand it's not about a lot of those technical skills, like you can teach someone how to do that. And veterans learn new stuff really fast. So those are the kind of thing you know, depending on who the person is, what they care about. There's different kind of like tactics, I guess you could say, as well, you're kind of honing your pitch to be.

Tim McCarthy  27:42  

And do you, just for my own curiosity, do you guys at Shift you have some sort of like a lead generator? Or are you generating your own leads? How does that work?

Josh Duntz  27:54  

Yeah, so right now, like the top executives, we do the whole sales process. So from prospecting, to kind of discovery and closing, we actually just. January 20th, we're launching a really cool new program that for like STRS like sales development, where they're gonna do all the lead gen for the A's and then basically, they kind of close the deal. There's 12 of those BDR starting they're all veterans and it's like a really cool, innovative program that they've built. Shift that allows people to use their GI Bill for 12 months while they're going through this program. It's basically like a apprenticeship program and then you know, with the goal of converting all of these people into full time account executives at Shift, like at the end of that training program, so super cool. I'm really excited to have all this people join the team that's gonna make my job a lot nicer.

Tim McCarthy 29:00  

Yeah, heck yeah. Having somebody generate the leads for you essentially is, it makes your job very easy. Man, sweet talk them and wham bam, thank you, man.

Josh Duntz  29:14  

That's the goal at least.

Brock Briggs  29:18  

Yeah, that sounds super interesting. And I imagine like being able to being a veteran yourself, you're able to speak to the community's like aptitude and ability much more than somebody who probably isn't. But I think you've hit on something there. That's really important that like, and a roadblock for a lot of veterans especially maybe that do 10 years and then they need to like get back out into the career. You know, the private sector and they need to find a job. 

But and maybe they don't have a degree and it's like, “Okay, I have all this valuable experience, but it's so hard to like even break through, like first level threshold of like, oh, a degree is required here.” But if they maybe just like took a few minutes and actually looked at the person's qualifications and like the things that they've done, that may change their mind about the person's ability to perform the job functions.

Josh Duntz 30:20  

Yeah, for sure. Luckily, I think like most technology companies, I would say, aren't requiring a degree anymore, which is awesome. But yeah, I mean, that's something that like, it's gonna go away here pretty soon, I think, has become kind of like arbitrary thing that most companies don't care about. And they know that. I mean, most people, if you look at them, like what they're actually doing in the private sector has nothing to do with what degree they have anyway, so.

Tim McCarthy 30:52  

So for our listeners, if somebody wanted to kind of get a hold of Shift and utilize them, do you operate across the country? Is it one specific region? How does that work?

Josh Duntz  31:06  

It's all over. So I like all the programs are all digital, you know, as far as like the career advancement for the transition folks. And then yeah, we feature people from all over the country now on the platform. So it's fully distributed across the country. 

Tim McCarthy


Brock Briggs  31:27  

You touched on something that a lot of the tech companies aren't requiring degrees. What is it that you're seeing? And then how can maybe people like us or listeners or whoever, how can they apply that to maybe become more attractive as like a potential hire, maybe through Shift or not through Shift? Like, what are companies these cutting edge companies looking for in entry, mid level roles?

Josh Duntz  31:56  

Yeah, I think if you're someone that kind of like fits that mold I was talking about earlier, where you're applying for jobs, or maybe you necessarily don't have that exact like industry experience or specific skill set that they're looking for, but you have all these, you know, unique experiences and things you did in the military, you have to formulate a story around those experiences to mold what they're looking for, I think. And I think that's one of the hardest part for veterans to kind of get in their head when they're leaving the military is that's like, your opportunity to really tell the world you are who you wanna be based off of your background, right? You can kind of reinvent yourself at that time period. 

So it's like a lot of research and kind of due diligence on the front end. And then you look at all the stuff you did and say, “Okay, how can I formulate my experience in the military that kind of fit what this person was looking for, without all those hard skills?” And it's all about, you hear this a lot like, it's all about being able to tell a good story, you know, and get people to empathize with you and to believe that you can come in and kind of do what they're looking for you to do.

Brock Briggs  33:16  

What you think as, and you can give me this, the salesman answer, I guess, here, and maybe that's why you're an account executive. What's a way that you did that, that maybe landed you this job with Shift or a way that you can put yourself in a way that drives that empathy from the person on the other side of the table?

Josh Duntz  33:40  

Yeah, I mean, my story is a perfect example of that, like, I went from being a Navy EOD tech, no prior private sector or technology experience whatsoever. And I set myself up to a series of tests to get this position, one, the skill bridge internship I did was as a BDR Rep, so the entry level sales role at a technology company. So I had that on my background. And then for the past 18 months before I got this job at Shift, I was just running and building Stasis full time. 

And a lot of the partnerships we had were with, like healthcare systems, like big hospitals and research centers. So I kind of developed a, you know, a resume where I was like, “Hey, I'm able to kind of take what I'm doing. I can sell that into these hospital systems. I've done the BDR thing. Basically, you know, believe in me that I can kind of get up to speed and perform.” And obviously, I think, like having a relationship with Mike and he saw what I was doing with Stasis. 

And Ivan, you know, we, me and a couple other guys started a nonprofit foundation for our community a couple of years ago. That's doing really good. So I'd like done six successful projects outside of the military before, and that definitely played a huge factor. If you talk to Mike, he'll tell you, the number one thing, that's what she sees from people that are successful going through the transition process, and being high performance or not, is having side projects. Like so whatever it is, podcasts, trying to start a clothing company, a bagel shop, like just something outside of your normal nine to five job is like the number one sign of whether someone's gonna be successful or not, which is pretty crazy to think about.

Brock Briggs  35:37  

Yeah, well, and I, we've talked about that, like, haven't quite beat it to death on this podcast. But have talked at length about how you can really build a resume online, like, but not through a traditional resume. It's like somebody watches, like, read your newsletter, or like, you know, they listen to your podcast, or, you know, you kind of have like this proof of work. That, even if it's not successful, that's not really the point. It's like, “Hey, I'm, I'm so passionate about this one area or whatever.” And then people can really see that and I think that passion is what can translate, not necessarily, like, do you have a background in this specific thing?

Josh Duntz  36:24  

Yeah, 100%. Yeah, like those big projects and kind of like landscape of work that you can point to, it's huge for someone that wants to, like break in, that fits that background, you know. Because you can kind of point this out and be like, “Look, what I did over here. 10,000 people signed up for my landing page,” or whatever the thing is, you know.

Tim McCarthy  36:46  

Well, I think it kind of proves to that, if you have a side gig or somebody has, you know, something that they're working on in the side, it just proves that they're not comfortable. They're not settling for their nine to five job. They're constantly looking for something to take them to that next level. You know, you touched on Stasis a little bit. And that's your own personal company. Can you give us kind of the rundown on that?

Josh Duntz  37:18  

Yeah. So it's, we're the digital health company. We've kind of found a little niche during the pandemic, where we're building rehab programs for COVID patients that have developed. It's called PACS. It's like post acute COVID syndrome, long haul COVID, If you guys have heard that being thrown around. Interesting, really interesting story of how we kind of got there. Originally, the company was, we were trying to develop, like a new smart cold tub, like for athletic recovery, you know. That was something like me, and a lot of the dudes that I worked with, we'd gotten super into sauna, cold tub, and like the Wim Hof breathing back in, you know, like 2017, 2018.

And at our shop, we did like, converted a chest freezer into like this makeshift cold tub, and we would do it every day and stuff. And so it was like, I really enjoyed it. And a lot of the guys got a lot of stuff out of it. But there was, we were like, “Dude, this is crazy. We're spending like 30 bucks a day on ice.” And you know, there was no like real easy way to do a cold tub. Unless you have like a professional, you know, setup that we're talking 10,15 grand. 

And so we actually we’re trying to set it up basically like, were like kind of the electric scooters where we were gonna place cold tubs into like CrossFit gyms throughout the country. And then you can kind of find a cold tub on an app near you, go pay for it, use for all through the app and stuff. So kind of like a commercial model. We had some gyms in Virginia Beach that were gonna let us do it and stuff and then a pandemic kicked off. And like all the gyms closed down, so we're like, shit, we got to figure out something else to do. 

So we started getting into like the breathing programs and developing breathing programs to like help people with their cardiovascular, like a real big endurance. Got hooked up with this doctor from Mount Sinai, which is a pretty prestigious hospital up in New York. And that was like, right when COVID was kicking off and you know, it's a respiratory disease. So there's a lot of breathing problems involved in it. We started doing a little pilot program at Mount Sinai and then it's kind of like ballooned over the past year into like us working with like 10s of 1000s of people from throughout the country and in different countries have been super cool.

Brock Briggs  39:52  

What is the, I guess what's exactly the offering or I guess how did it evolve from like the cold tub to a more breathing focus?

Josh Duntz  40:03  

Yeah, so you know, I was at the time myself and my partner, Dan, were just really into a lot of upgrading stuff on our own, like personally for a few years there. And you know, just following the kind of trend and where we saw like a lot of the mindfulness and meditation space going. I thought the breathing stuff was gonna be kind of the next cool thing. And like the health and wellness space with Wim Hof, he was blowing up at the time with his stuff. So that's kind of like we talked about it. And we discussed and we were saying the ideas, let's go this way. 

We first started developing like, we call them Stress Management Programs. For a lot of people that were like, trying to join some sort of special operations community that were in like debt before they go to boot camp. That  wasn't super successful. And then that was like, kind of when the COVID thing happened. And once we started doing that, it kind of just took off. So we're like, “Okay, I guess we're gonna get into like the healthcare industry.” So it's been kind of crazy, like how much has changed over the past year and just like learning so much. Neither one of us had any experience, like in the healthcare industry, or kind of working with like doctors and PT clinics and stuff before. So I've been super cool. 

The offering is like, very simple. People typically hear about us because they get like a referral from their doctor or their PT. And then they come onto our website,  they get like linked up with a respiratory trainer. They'll do a consultation and kind of see what's going on, you know, like you would expect from a typical doctor. 

And then we have like specific programs, depending on what you're trying to deal with. They get prescribed program, we have like an app that kind of walks them through their daily training. Whenever we do, like, you know, brief check ins with them once a month, or it's kind of up to the patient on the frequency of that. So right now, we're kind of going through a big product development phase of being able to incorporate like data from wearables and stuff to connect to the app. So we can start to like, really personalize and individualize the experience. Yeah.

Tim McCarthy  42:33  

It's a pretty cool stuff. Yeah. No, no, you're good, man. I liked the fact that you're able to pivot with the market, you know. You're doing the cold tub thing. COVID happened, gym, shut down, you're like, “Okay, let's move away from that.” And then you're doing the Stress Management with debt. Kids get people in debt, I guess we'll call them, that wasn't super successful. And then COVID popped off, and you're like, “Okay, let's lean into that.” Are you guys the ones that are developing the treatment for them? Or is that more so like the doctor?

Josh Duntz  43:09  

So yeah, we actually like work hand in hand. So we have both a neuroscientist and a pulmonologist that are on our advisory board. But you know, there's been something that people don't like guess, or really know is like, there's a ton of academic literature and research that's been done on breathing. And like its effect on your nervous system, and how it affects emotional state and your physiology on you know, cardiovascular load, and HRV and all this stuff. So we kind of looked at all of the research out there and developed an initial framework, and then we've been kind of iterating on it, you know, the past year to figure out what's working, what's not. 

I'm super excited about the wearable piece, because that'll give us like real hard biometric data. And we'll be able to see like, what time of the day is it most effective for you to do it, you know, all these really cool metrics to take it kind of to the next level. But yeah, we're in. We did a study with Mount Sinai. And then actually next month that we have a blind placebo controlled trial, starting with UPenn, Medical Center for heart failure patients. And that's gonna be like a six month trial. So it'd be really big deal if that goes well, because we're kind of going down the route of eventually we're trying to get this covered by like insurance and employer health care systems, too. So like all this, the research is gonna go a long way and be able to make that happen, hopefully by the end of the year.

Brock Briggs  44:51  

Yeah. So you said that there's like all this literature and documentation and studies that support like why breathing is our controlled breathing improves all these things. I don't doubt that. Give us like the quick and dirty of like, what is it that it's offering? Like, what improvements does it make to stress level or is it more like leaning into the COVID side. I know that, like mindfulness is like a super big deal over the last like couple years, especially with like, calm, and like the sleep apps and meditative apps and stuff like that. This seems like something that falls into that same sector. What are the tangible benefits that somebody would be able to see from going and using one of your plans?

Josh Duntz  45:42  

So it kind of, there's a ton of like little stuff, you know, like everything from your heart rate, blood pressure, immune system, stuff like that. But like the bigger picture of it is, it's what applies to no matter if you're a COVID patient, a heart failure patient, someone with asthma, whatever it is. Breathing really affects your, it's called your autonomic nervous system, which basically controls everything out in your system. So it's responsible for like all your organs, that controls your heart rate, blood blood pressure, skin temperature, you know, your immune system, how much sleep you get literally everything, stress levels. And that's broken down into two different branches, you have like the fight or flight mode. And then rest and digest is typically what a lot of people call the other side of that nervous system. 

If you breathe really fast, and hyperventilate, activates your fight or flight mode. If you breathe slow and kind of control your breathing, that activates the rest and digest or it's called the parasympathetic nervous system. So particularly with a lot of the COVID patients, they're stuck in this like chronically activated fight or flight mode. So their respiration rate is much higher. A lot of them are breathing through their mouth, like upper chest dominant breathing, and all that just kind of continues in that fight or flight pattern. So it's basically all geared around trying to slow that down. By slowing down their breathing rate. 

Typically, people are breathing, you know, 14 to 18 breaths per minute. We train them down to get to six breaths per minute. And then that also really affects like your HRV, which is basically an indicator of that nervous system and how much stress your body is going through. So the higher you want to higher heart rate variability, that basically means your nervous system is like prepared to take on more strain or stress every day. So those are kind of a few things that we focus on.

Brock Briggs 47:54  

That sounds like super scientific, and you sound like you know what you're talking about, and all these things. So I'm gonna take your word.

Josh Duntz  48:03  

I spend a lot of time reading and talking about this over the past couple of years.

Brock Briggs  48:07  

Yeah, it sounds like this isn't your first time given the pitch for it.

Tim McCarthy  48:13  

Did anybody else just start counting their breaths? Am I breathing really fast?

Brock Briggs  48:23  

Josh is actually gonna lead us through some breathing exercises at the end of the podcast. So I was curious, like, what? What is it? Like? How? How has your knowledge of this space and like everything that you guys have seen and done with Stasis? What is like the day to day impact? Like how has your breathing changed because of like, what you know about this?

Josh Duntz 48:49  

Yeah, I mean, that's why I got into it in the first place, right is because I was doing all this stuff on my own and saw a big difference. It's made a huge impact on like my running and my aerobic endurance and my fitness for sure, since I started paying attention to my breathing. But yeah, it's like a, you know, something that I'm constantly thinking about for sure throughout the day.

Brock Briggs  49:16  

Can you give us like some will be sure to check out Stasis, obviously. But can you give us like a 60 second lesson on how we should be breathing better or?

Josh Duntz  49:26  

Yeah, yeah, there's like basically three pillars that we harp on for functional breathing. One, it's like, you know, unless you're doing very strenuous like an aerobic exercise, you should be breathing through your nose all the way like, inhale and exhale through your nose. You'd be surprised at how many people actually breathe in their mouth. Second, wanted to like use your diaphragm when you're breathing, right? So the bottom of your stomach, right? That's where your diaphragm sits. 

And to activate that visceral  upper chest, a lot of people do really like real shallow, rapid breaths, right, and you'll see like your shoulders rise or your upper chest rise. So stay away from that. And then third is that respiration rate like a mean for that when you're consciously trying to breathe or doing like a 10 minute shot. So notice, you wanna focus on that six breaths per minute timeframe. So typically, we'll recommend a four second inhale, followed by a six second exhale. And then you have a slight natural pause in between breaths.

Brock Briggs  50:33  

Have to maybe spend some time on that tonight. I'm already like, super self conscious about it now.

Tim McCarthy  50:39  

I’m like trying to activate my diaphragm. I'm like, is that my diaphragm or like? So you guys are obviously leaning more towards like COVID patients and their recovery and maybe just other like medical situations. But for somebody that wants to use it as like stress management, or panic attacks or anxiety, whatever, do you guys offer something like? Can they just download an app and sign up with the program? Or?

Josh Duntz  51:05  

Yeah, yeah, for sure. There's, they can kind of do more generic stuff. And that's something we're gonna be kind of like, you know, figuring out is like, what else do we wanna do? Because a lot of it is, you know, the basics of it. The foundation kind of applies to everyone just being a human. And then there's kind of like, little things that we can tweak to kind of hone in on these specific chronic illnesses or diseases. 

So yeah, it's just like, we kind of like, you know, when we look at the market, there's a ton of people doing that, right? Where they're building a brand around being more like a meditation or mindfulness company for general health and wellness. And we actually, we saw that, like, we wanna do the exact opposite, right? And we're like, okay, everything we do is gonna be backed by like research and science and legit. Because we just saw, like, no one was doing that. And there's no gap in the market. I guess, as far as like people actually, looking at the research and making a connection, “Okay, this could be a legit like health care company.” It doesn't have to be like, general wellness, you know, more consumer facing companies. So there's strategic initiatives as far as like not offering everything you know, right now, too.

Tim McCarthy  52:23  

Sure. Now, I get that.

Brock Briggs  52:28  

Yeah, it turns out that breathing is a little bit important. And everybody does do it at least once a day. So I would imagine the market for that type of thing is pretty large.

Tim McCarthy  52:40  

Well, I kind of like laughed to myself when you had said, Josh said, I got like, really into breathing. And in my head,

Brock Briggs

I was so into breathing. 

Tim McCarthy

Yeah, I also am really into breathing.

Josh Duntz  52:57  

You think like most people go their whole lives without actually like stopping and just focusing on their breathing for a couple of minutes. You know, like, when's the last time you just kind of stopped there? And like, just focus on your breathing?

Tim McCarthy  53:11  

About forty five seconds ago, that’s when I started focusing on it. 

Josh Duntz


Brock Briggs

Like Tim found a passion for it.

Tim McCarthy

Yeah, I'm hooked. Should we, Brock, do you have anything else on Stasis?

Brock Briggs  53:28  

Maybe not particularly on Stasis. I was gonna kind of pivot here. Do you have anything?

Tim McCarthy  53:34  

No, that's what I was gonna say. Shall we get into the psychedelic retreat?

Brock Briggs  53:38  

Yes. Okay. So I have to ask that. For those listening. I did some snooping on Josh, on his personal page prior to our interview. And you cite on there that you went on a psychedelic retreat, of veterans psychedelic retreat and met a few people. And also for everybody listening. I'm not doxing Josh, I asked. I've got the clearance to bring this up on the conversation. So I'm not totally thrown him to the wolves. Yeah, we got to know about this, like, close. And..

Josh Duntz  54:15  

Yeah, it was. It was pretty cool. I mean, something I've been into for the past few years now. And it's been kind of life changing and what it's brought to my life. So I have the opportunity came up to go on this Ayahuasca Retreat through Heroic Heart Projects, which is a veteran, nonprofit that basically facilitates the retreats for veterans. First time doing it last year, I was down in Mexico. And yeah, it was a crazy, very good experience. I've kind of like itching to go down there again. Now, it's been about a year. I'm hoping to go in summer actually with a couple other EOD buddies who have recently got out of there maybe. 

But yeah, I have no problem talking about it, was actually something that I kind of got out of that retreat was just to like being going through the transition. And like looking for a job and having a startup. You kind of feel like you have to, like act a certain way in the, you know, in on social media or whatever it is. Because with the environment we live in now, you never know what you're gonna say that's gonna piss off someone or kind of close an opportunity for you. 

And so something I didn't really, you know, I kind of had like, my professional life, and then my personal life, but with just how much impact this stuff is having on veterans and just the world in general. When coming back from that, I was like, I'm just gonna start being myself in all aspects of my life. And if some people didn't buy or don’t do business with me or work with me or whatever, then those are the people I don't want to be associated with anyway, so fuck them.

Brock Briggs  56:09  

That's so cool. I wanna hear some more, like day to day details of what the retreat consisted of, but I think you're really driving at something that's a huge problem. And like, you really, you can get cancelled very quickly in our day to day culture here. And it's such a bummer, because it really prevents people from saying and doing the things that they want. But yeah, I'm in complete agreement with you. And I think that with that type of mindset, you'll naturally gravitate towards other people that think and believe the same way. And everybody else will do the same. So maybe that is a good thing. You see that so much more with just legalization of like marijuana, especially in light of like all of the studies that are being done to, like treat PTSD. And I'm curious if there's any kind of like scientific stuff with this and PTSD, but there's a lot of interesting things that are happening with how psychedelics or marijuana or whatever can serve veterans.

Josh Duntz  57:22  

Yeah, yeah, for sure. I mean, like, that is, like marijuana, and all these psychedelics, I believe, are gonna be the future of a large, like mental health basically, in our economy, for the mental health system. There's so much more effective than all the like pill, SSRIs, and all this stuff that they prescribe to people now. So it's cool to kind of see at this early like, is like in the next five or 10 years, it's gonna be legal everywhere. And it's gonna be cool. It's gonna be cool to see how like it impacts the world, because I think it's gonna really change a lot of things, for the better.

Tim McCarthy  58:06  

It's really fascinating for me too, like, over the past couple of years to see something like marijuana go from, like growing up, it was so taboo. Like, yeah, the DARE program and like, it just wasn't, you know, wasn't something you did just like, I'm sure 99.9% of America. Like I smoked weed back when I was in high school, like maybe a handful of times. And I like didn't really like it because I always felt like I was gonna get in trouble. 

And like my dad grew up in the 70s. So big old pothead way back in the day. And it's funny to like, see my relationship change with my dad, because now he's like an empty nester. You know, it's just him and my mom and they're like, doing their thing. And he's, like, started to dabble back in it. And he's like, so open with me about it. And I'm like, at first, like, “This is weird dad. You're talking to me about getting high.” 

But now it's just like not a taboo thing anymore because it's just becoming legal in so many, so many places. I agree with you. I think in the next 5 to 10 years, you're gonna see a big, big change in that. On this psychedelic retreat, what was it? Mushrooms, like what was the psychedelic?

Josh Duntz  59:24  

We did a lot of psychedelics. We did, the first ceremony night was mushrooms and then we did three Ayahuasca ceremonies. And I also did two, it's called Bufo is the 5-MeO-DMT. Like out of the toad, the toad Venom they smoke? I did that twice as well.

Brock Briggs  59:50  

Really, I'm just like, I'm googling what was it Heroic Hearts or what is this? I'm needing this.

Josh Duntz 59:57  

Heroic Hearts Project

Brock Briggs  59:59  

What is the pitching for this or is it just like, “Hey, come down to Mexico with some other veterans and just trip nuts for like a week?” Or what? What is the, I mean, that's obviously not what they say. But what are they saying is like the benefit of, what do they get out of this?

Josh Duntz  1:00:20  

It’s for the, you know, like marketing for PTSD or trauma, depression, like mental health basically.

Brock Briggs 1:00:29  

Yeah. What I guess, what were your biggest, I mean, you talked about how you wanna like, come back and be more of yourself? Did that seem to be consistent with what other people thought? Or what were the other takeaways that you think you got?

Josh Duntz 1:00:46  

No, so it's kind of like, pretty unique as far as everyone's experiences. I mean, so the, it's definitely I wanna, like, make sure people are with not like, go down their trip balls, like everything is very intentional and like, has purpose behind it. So you do a lot of work with, like, coaches basically, before the retreat to kind of help them or they help you really, you know. Why do you want to drill down here? Like, what are you looking to get out of it? What's your intention? What's your purpose and because like, that's a big part of it during the ceremony. You really have a, you're kind of like communicating with these substances, right? It's not like you just take it and ship just fucking happens. You have to put like a lot of work in and I was one of the things that I actually took away was, like, not going into these things with expectations, right? 

Like that I'm just gonna take a substance and it's gonna fix all my problems down. So like, the first night we actually did ayahuasca, but that's kind of like what happened is I guess I had expectations of like, what was gonna happen during that ceremony. And I didn't get anything like nothing happened. I thought I was like, it happened to about 50% of the people were, like, for whatever reason, or not like the first night, I guess. It's kind of common for people to have like, not a bad trip, but just like you don't get much out of it, or you feel like you're just nothing happened. There was no communication at all. 

And like, that also happened the first time I did 5-MeO-DMT. And kind of like looking back, now I was in a theme situation where like, I had done, I was like, so excited to go down here and do this. So I knew what I was kind of getting myself into. And I put all these crazy expectations, I guess, around these things. And when it didn't happen, I had to kind of like, look back and be like, “Okay, what's what's going on here?” And then like the third night, which was the second Ayahuasca ceremony, I kind of like, sat, like, everyone's got their own little map based on the ceremony room. And I like drink my cup of ayahuasca and then I just I repeated in my head, like, over and over again, like, what my intentions were, what I wanted to get out of it and kind of like talking to ayahuasca, like begging. 

Ayahuasca has like a motherly figure. So like, begging her to, like, come to me and talk to me and all this stuff. And like, I felt like I really put it into work. And she came by night, so it was pretty crazy. And then like the whole, the other couple ceremonies were just like, awesome after that. Because I didn't go into them with expectations. I kind of knew, like, here's a real broad overview of like, what I'm hoping to get out of it. And then sit there and wait and kind of do the work, you know. And so it was pretty cool. I really learned a lot about how I was like, bullshitting myself, again, portraying this like image to the world of who I wanted people to think I was, and not really being that person behind closed doors. So it was really a cool experience for me.

Tim McCarthy 1:04:07  

Do you think that you've seen an improvement over the past year since then?

Josh Duntz  1:04:11  

Like 100%. Yeah, you can like talk with people that. I mean, like, I think a much different person for sure. And I've done like I said, I'd done psychedelics before that but never in that same setting where like, we had legit shamans running the ceremonies that like they fly in from the Amazonian in Peru that Ayahuasca is like that's where it started. So it was super cool to have that, like very tribal like authentic experience with them. And even the mushroom trip, which I had, like a lot of experience with my friends was completely different than anything I've ever experienced before just because of having the shamans and all the music that they have.

You're also in the room with like 15 other people tripping balls on mushrooms. So there's like this like, weird, like group dynamic that, you know, you kind of like a lot of people. There's like telepathic shake going on, like the group kind of goes in and out of these like waves. And it is a really cool, cool experience that I think everyone should definitely check out if they're interested in exploring that avenue of consciousness.

Brock Briggs 1:05:36  

Like your wish list just got updated. No, that is really cool, though. And especially like knowing and feeling the tangible benefits from that, and kind of being able to be an advocate for that now. I think that it's very easy to talk about and advocate for something that when you yourself have like experienced a life change. So I think that that's really cool. 

You talked about something there that I'd like to see if you could kind of expand on a little bit as going down there and like preparing yourself for whatever it was that was coming. Maybe mushrooms and this type of retreat aren't for everybody, and probably not for most people. What was that preparation like? Because I think that when you're about to go under or looking to make a major life change. You really, there isn't just something that just happens and then you're fixed. You really do have to put in the work, like you said. What were the kinds of things that you were doing and thinking about, going into prepare yourself to make that kind of life change?

Josh Duntz 1:06:54  

Yeah, that's a good one. It's something that a lot of people, you find out when you get down there is like a lot of us. This happened kind of out of the blue, like the chance to go down there on this retreat. And it seemed to kind of be at the perfect moment for like a lot of us that are out there. Like a lot of people were just in these really rough spots in their life. 

And so I felt like called kind of called down there like I put. So like how it all went down as I had known about this organization, Heroic Hearts Project for a while since I got out basically. And I think like the day I got out, I put in an application to go down there. And I actually didn't end up going until almost two years later. So it's kind of weird, I developed like a working relationship with one of the girls who's a neuroscience that works for them. Like she volunteers some time for like some of the studies they're doing. And I was recently, I think she was on. I was talking to her on a podcast and she’s like, kind of like thought came online like “Hey, I saw you're working with Heroku spark project, put an application a long time ago, like we'd love to go down there.” 

And like a week later in my inbox was like an invitation for this next retreat. I left in like three weeks. And I was like at a rough time in my life where I just had moved down here from Virginia Beach, was doing Stasis but like not making money to prepare myself. So I was living off like a little disability money from the VA. They've just like and didn't know what was next for me, right?

Like my transition wasn't like peaches and roses where I had this cush job waiting for me when I got out. Like I tried to, I worked on Stasis full time for like 18 months before I did that. So it was cool. Like when I got down there I'd been thinking a lot about Ohio, Alaska when I got the invitation. And then I’d like to say I did a lot of work with like the coaches and I was just journaling, meditating a lot like trying to figure out like, what's the next chapter of my life. 

And like I thought going down there was kind of like this really good refresh, kind of like restart. That's how a lot of people like us these big psychedelic trips is because like how it actually works in your brain is it kinda like all these like, bad thoughts or thought processes you thought you have that become ingrained in you, kind of like wipes it all clean, you know. So you kind of get this like, new perspective that you haven't seen before. So from like a timing perspective and stuff, it just all worked out. And like, since I've gotten back from that, I can like point to very tangible things that like how my life has gotten much better. So that's cool, for sure.

Brock Briggs  1:09:50  

That's really cool. That sounds like a lot of I mean, I say fun, but like there's obviously much more to it than that, but..

Josh Duntz  1:10:00  

Yeah, it’s not all, it's not all like fun. Like, it's a lot of hard work. 

Brock Briggs


Josh Duntz

You don't want to go do that stuff where you know, it's gonna be like bad stuff is gonna come up for stuff that you may. You're going down there to kind of like work on whatever problems you have in life. So it's not like you're going down there and it's you know, rainbows and unicorns the whole time. But it was a, you know, very good experience. And like I said, everyone that was down there in my group, like all came back transformed, for sure. 

I don't know, again, that stuff doesn't last forever, unless you like implement the stuff you learned when you get back into real life. That's like probably the most important thing that they harp on in these retreats is like reintegration into society afterwards. You come back, like all woke, to think you know the answers to everything. And so sometimes you gotta pump the brakes and start to think through things a little deeper than just these crazy anti Piazzale trip involve.

Brock Briggs  1:11:06  

Right. That was really cool. Like, well, yeah, I will definitely be eager to maybe reach out to some more people that have gone on. I'd love to hear some other experiences. So maybe we can kind of connect over that. Was the gal, the girl neuroscientists, was she also in the military or former?

Josh Duntz  1:11:26  

I don't believe she was, maybe yes, she was. Her name's doc Kate Pate. If anyone wants to look her up, I believe she was on the air force from NSA. But I'm not 100% sure, so double check on that. But yeah, her specialty is kind of like in PTSD and TBI and stuff. 

Brock Briggs  1:11:50  

Yeah. Did you have anything else on that, Tim?

Tim McCarthy  1:11:53  

No, that answers all my questions. It sounds like it was a cool experience, man. Having you kind of explained like the hard work and stuff that goes into it. It's not what I thought it was gonna be about. But it's interesting. It sounds like you've benefited from it. And sounds like a cool thing for sure. Probably not for everybody, like you said, but that's cool, man.

Brock Briggs  1:12:20  

I kind of wanna start to close out here a little bit, but I am curious to hear about your time working as an entrepreneur. We increasingly are like talking to more and more veteran entrepreneurs and then entering the space and I am personally kind of fascinated with the whole dynamic of people starting their own companies. 

And I honestly think that veterans are super uniquely equipped. You touched on this with Chef like, we have all these skills and time leading and maybe not like the background to like work at a traditional job. I personally think that entrepreneurship is a very attractive route for people with our background. Can you talk about that journey for you what you've learned, maybe advice that you'd give to somebody that was looking to do the same thing?

Josh Duntz 1:13:22  

Yeah. We've learned a ton, man, I've learned everything. Like I didn't know anything about business right before and most people don't. The hardest part about it is like you can read as much as you want online and books and stuff and that's all great. But like it's just so independent. Everyone's path is completely different than someone else, right? And they're doing the exact same thing you are so. 

But you just have to go out and do it really to learn and you're gonna make a ton of mistakes along the way and that's how you learn. And most people fail in business because at some point they just they quit, right?That's why companies don't survive, typically. They either run like you run out of money or you just like aren't growing fast enough or whatever and decide to quit doing the business so it's I just have resilience, been okay with like testing stuff and failing is kind of what it takes, I think to start something successful nowadays.

Brock Briggs 1:14:28  

Well, it sounds like you have had some major, I guess I don't want to call them failures but like major pivots and changes to your business with Stasis and like not letting a setback be. That's not the game changer or like set you back into like a normal job, I guess. I mean, you do have a job but working on this on the side.

Josh Duntz  1:14:54  

Yeah, there's been definitely times where I've like wanted to quit and I was done with it. Luckily, I have an awesome partner and my buddy Dan. Because every time he kind of like talk to me, set me straight on what we're doing and stuff. So yeah, it's been I mean, you can talk to anyone and like, there's roller coasters for sure. But like I said, I guess just the ability to keep going, will hopefully be the driver of success, perhaps at some point.

Brock Briggs  1:15:27  

Yeah. Somebody's gotta do it. And it sounds like you guys are making a really tangible impact in a good way. Josh, do you wanna give everybody listening a place where if you wanna where people can go to find out more about you, more about Stasis, Shift? 

Josh Duntz


Brock Briggs

Plug anything you want

Josh Duntz  1:15:46  

All my personal social media is just @JoshDuntz. For the Shift, shift.org. And then Stasis, statis.life. And then like we're at, you know, @stasis or @shift for social media, and people can find all the resources and stuff there.

Brock Briggs  1:16:10  

Awesome! This has been good conversation, Josh. Thank you so much for your time. 

Josh Duntz

Yeah, thanks for having me on, guys.