Everyone wants to lead a life of significance, to know that they’ve led a meaningful life and how to impact on others but the chaos of life often overwhelms that calling, leading us to frustration, to being overwhelmed, or maybe to regret. In Rise Above Chaos, human dynamics expert Erick Rheam leverages years of research and his own life story to explain step by step how to rediscover your path to significance and inner peace, no matter how busy or how chaotic your life has become.

Discover the seven elements of the perfect day of a proven daily regimen that insulates you from the devastating whirlwinds of life. Unlock a proven formula to motivate and excite you about your future and then, apply a simple five-part methodology that will help you rediscover your passion, redefine your purpose, and gain the courage to act. Don’t give in to the daily treadmill of surviving chaos, rise above it and discover a renewed sense of peace and purpose, knowing you’re on a path of significance. Here’s my conversation with Erick Rheam.

Welcome into Author Hour. I’m your host Benji Block. Today, I am honored to be joined by Erick Rheam who has just authored a new book, the title of the book is, Rise Above Chaos: The Five Principles To Discover Significance and Live in Peace. Erick, thank you for joining us on Author Hour today.

Erick Rheam: Hey Benji, it’s exciting, man. It’s a pleasure to be here, thanks for having me.

Benji Block: Yeah, exciting days for you as you have this new book. Before we jump into that, maybe just provide us with a little bit of context around your work and your professional life.

Erick Rheam: Yeah, I’m a professional speaker and author, Benji, so I travel the country, focused on human dynamics and discovering significance based on the premise that I believe that we all want to achieve some level of significance in our life, right? To know that our life matters. At the end of the day, nobody wants to get at the end of their life and realize it meant nothing, you know? In your career, you’re going to spend about 82,000 hours. Think about that, 82,000 hours of your life working in a career and you don’t want to invest your life into something and realize it meant nothing. We all want to achieve some level of meaning in our life.

The problem is that we often find ourselves in chaotic circumstances, going from one chaos to the next, the whirlwinds of life tend to get us off track. We tend to drift in ways we don’t want to drift and before you know it, 10 years have passed, 15 years have passed and there’s some regret. So, I want to avoid that myself personally and I wanted to figure out how I could live that life of significance, have that meaning in my own life and along the way, I found some things that work and so I go around and pass that methodology on as many people as I can. So, it’s fun, man.

Rising Above The Chaos

Benji Block: Yeah, it is. You’re doing this at a level of speaking and communicating that way, obviously then translating this to a book. Why did this feel like the right time to do that and move forward with a writing project? 

Erick Rheam: I’ve been doing it for a while now, I’ve been writing about this topic for, I would say, about seven or eight years now. I’ve been speaking on this topic for the last four or five years and so, I’ve actually been writing on this, I would say, for the last decade and it just came to fruition, really about the last 18 months or so when I was able to put some resources together, I had some income where I can invest into it. 

I think that’s probably the main thing, is just having the right amount of resources that I could properly invest so that I can do the book right. I didn’t want to do this kind of a half project, I want to do a very full-blown professional project and I’m at a point now where I’ve got a team that’s on board with me now. Before I was a solopreneur trying to do everything on my own, I have a team now that’s giving me some margin and gave me some time, that was a big resource and the income to hire the right people to help me get it off the ground. 

That’s the main thing and I’ve been wanting to get off the ground for a while but everything came into fruition and alignment over the last 18 months.

Benji Block: That’s so great to hear and it’s just going to be a great resource, so I’m excited to dive in. Let me ask you one more just practical question. When you’re talking about your ideal reader, when you’re thinking about who this book is going to add the most value to, Erick, who comes to mind? Who are you excited to have pick up this book?

Erick Rheam: I wrote this with a busy professional man and woman in mind. These are folks that are not new in their career. I would say they’re kind of mid-career, they’re veterans, they’re old enough where they realize that, “Maybe it wasn’t exactly the way I mapped it out in my head when I got into college and got my degree and maybe started this career. “ And maybe you’re a decade into it, you’ve had a couple of kids, maybe you found a partner, you’ve got a mortgage now, you got a couple of car payments and you realize, “Wow, life can be a little monotonous” and you feel that tinge of, “Did I make the right decision?”

That’s who I want to target, where they’re old enough they got to the point that okay, maybe the shine has rubbed off a little bit of their dreams, wants, and desires, right? But, they’re young enough that they can actually do something about it, they can make some changes and get back on track. That’s the perfect reader for me.

Benji Block: I like that. Okay, each person’s going to come into a search for significance in their own way. You reached a point, years back where you felt you didn’t kind of have that path to significance, you were searching I’d say. I’d be interested to hear you articulate what led to this kind of culminating moment of realization?

Erick Rheam: Yeah. Well for me, it came in the form of a couple of gut punches and what I call my rock bottom and what I define as a rock bottom, Benji, is not necessarily a circumstance if something happens to you. I’ve been in some pretty horrific circumstances, I’ve been in — I’ve literally lit myself on fire and had to go to the ER and I’ve lost significant loved ones in my life. I’ve been in some major car wrecks, I’ve had some financial issues, things like that. Those weren’t rock bottom moments for me. 

My rock bottom moment to me, and I think for anyone, really is when you start failing in relationships because I think at the end of the day, the bottom line for any human being is we need to have that human connection and when you don’t have that connection or you fail in some of your significant connections, that’s when you start to, I think, to feel that rock bottom feeling that I was feeling.

This all happened to me around 2005. One was when my wife — basically, we were newlyweds at the time and she sat me down one day and looked at me with bloodshot eyes and said, “You know, you’re not living up to my expectations. You’re not living up to what I want out of a husband” and that really hurt. That really hurt because she was my best friend, someone I chose to spend my life with, she chose to spend her life with me and I wasn’t living up to her expectations.

The second gut punch for me is when my parents came out to visit me around the same time when my twin boys were born in 2005, they were going to be there for 10 days, they came out to Colorado, we didn’t see them much. It was a special treat for them to come out, they were supposed to be there for 10 days, my dad and I lasted two before we got into a major argument and I laid my hands on my dad in anger. Benji, I don’t know if you’ve ever done anything where you got so mad, you’re doing something, you have an out-of-body experience and you know it’s wrong but you do it anyway because you’re just so angry. 

You just get beyond logic at that point and I forced my dad out of my house. He actually went home that day and we didn’t speak for six months. My dad was the best man at my wedding, my best friend, someone I looked up to, my hero but yet I find myself pushing my own dad out of my house out in anger and the third gut punch is when I was under investigation at my job.

I was in a leadership position, where some people had said I’d been abusing my power. Basically, I was treating people like robots and I just got out of the military. I was treating them like soldiers. I was young, I was brash, ambitious, I lacked self-awareness, they did an investigation, not enough that it would fire me but enough, they said, “You need to take a break.” So they ask me not to come back the next week for a forced suspension and I found myself that week really, at a point where I need to evaluate where I was in my life. 

I was failing at my marriage, I was failing with my father, I was failing at my career and if I was going to get back on track, I needed to make some changes. That’s what kind of started this whole journey for me.

Benji Block: It’s interesting to talk to you now all these years removed from that because clearly, things have shifted and the book is really this — I mean, correct me if I’m wrong but it seems like the point is the fast-forward the time between the realization you had, something needs to shift, right? Then actual enlightenment, you want readers to discover a path of significance as quick as possible so they can get to really living, is that right?

Erick Rheam: Yeah, that’s right. I mean, what I did was I — one of the things I learned early on as I began to capture my thoughts a lot. I began to capture what I was doing, what wasn’t working, what was working just from my own edification, and then what came out of that was really this set of comprehensive notes and ideas and thoughts that were these breadcrumbs that led to this book and I realized that I’m not the only one that experiences this. We all get to that point where we’re just failing in many facets of our lives when it comes to the major relationships and that’s really all that matters. If we’re going to achieve any level of significance in our life and really, the point of the book is that, if you’re going to achieve any level of significance in your life, you can’t do it alone.

Benji, there’s no example of any man or woman achieving anything of significance without the help of others. If you’re going to have a shot in this world to do anything meaningful, which I think every human being desires that, you’re going to need someone on their journey with you. That’s why it’s so important that the relationships that you form and develop have to be healthy. They have to be done correctly and in order to do that though, you have to be right first because if you aren’t right first then it’s hard to develop those relationships.

What I did is I unpacked that journey over the five principles that I apply every day in my own life and that’s what I love about this book, this isn’t something that I’m talking about in theory. This is literally the playbook of my life and what I’m doing, what’s working and what I found [on] the other side of it — and what I want the reader to find on the other side of it — is that once you figure out a way to cut through the whirlwind of your life and you apply some of these methodologies that I recommend, it allows you to rise above the chaos because the thing I learned when my sister passed away, for instance, that was a hard hit for me.

By the way, that wasn’t a rock bottom for me because I had a really good relationship with my sister. It was sad but no regret because we had a really good relationship. One thing I realized during that chaotic time in my life is that the world doesn’t stop and that was a really hard moment for me to realize, nobody really cared at the end of the day except people that were close to me and my sister and our family.

The world keeps moving with or without us and if I don’t have a methodology to rise above that chaos so I can stay on my path to significance, then there’s always that sense of something’s off in your life. Once I was able to figure out how to rise above my own chaos, on the other side of it, I found peace which is a beautiful place to be. When I wake up every day, it doesn’t mean I don’t have issues and obstacles but I approach them with a peaceful spirit which is so much better than what I was back in 2005.

The Five Elements to Building the Framework for a Meaningful Life

Benji Block: You’re in this place in 2005 where you’re having this realization, something’s got to shift and you start writing these notes and were kind of processing things. I then look at the finished product of this book, right? You have these five things — there’s a lot of stuff that people try on their path to significance, there’s probably a lot of notes that didn’t make this book — Erick, how do you kind of sift through all the noise, all the thoughts, all the things like different people’s ideas of this search for significance, right? Really start to hone in on these five specifically?

Erick Rheam: Yeah, well, I think what it was is trial and error. Again, we’re talking, I started this process in 2005. It wasn’t that I started six months ago. I did a lot of experimenting. A lot of things I tried that worked and didn’t work, a lot of things that I found were really helpful, not helpful and I’ve been writing — this is my sixth book — I’ve been writing all along and writing is a way that I’ve always processed what’s going on in my mind, in my heart, in my life. What was helpful for me is, I started a blog several years ago and I started writing that blog, just for my own edification. 

Along the way, I started get a little bit of a following and as I begin to write on the things I was experiencing, I was beginning to see clarity on some patterns. That’s the thing — in the book, I talk about puzzle pieces and I kind of equate your life as a puzzle piece. What I was doing was I was taking these different puzzle pieces that were good by themselves but they had to be connected with other things that were going to make up what I wanted my life to look like.

Well, every now and then, I’d find a couple of puzzle pieces that would actually fit together and I’m like, “Okay, this is working, that feels right.” It was satisfying. There’s nothing more satisfying when you put a puzzle together and two pieces fit, right? Same thing with your life and so these things start to fit together and then in the blog as I begin to write, I begin to see that people that were interacting with my blog, what was connecting with them.

I was like, “Okay, not only does this help me but I’m seeing other people give me feedback.” Like, “Oh yeah, I like that point you made there, that was fantastic there.” I begin to see that where other people outside of just me were making the connection because a lot of things I was doing, I was just doing it for myself so I could not only survive chaos but thrive but then, when I started doing this blog, I started to see I was affecting others and I thought, “Well, maybe there’s something here.” So that was where I was able to start connecting, aligning the things that work with me but other people found was helping them and that’s what made it in the book.

The things that just helped me personally but other people weren’t connecting with, probably that didn’t make the book because it doesn’t matter at the end of the day if it doesn’t help others.

Benji Block: Yeah. Okay, high level. Walk us through, Erick, just what the five are and what you saw connecting with others.

Erick Rheam: The first one is you know, you got to embrace your spiritual journey. We’re spiritual beings, Benji. I mean, depending on what your beliefs, your faith systems are, there’s all different approaches to it but I don’t think anyone can deny that there’s something inside, that desire that something that constantly asks the question “why”.

Every human being needs to know that. We[‘ve] got to answer that question “why” and so for me, that was the very first thing I had to do, I had to identify really what does a meaningful life look like to me. It doesn’t matter what I think it means for you, Benji, you have to figure that out.

The first part of the book, I talk about how to identify your “why.” I once heard one of my mentors say, people lose their “why” when they lose their way and that was my problem, I’d lost my way. I lost my way because I forgot what my “why” was. I had to get reconnected with that, that’s number one. In the book, I talk about that. 

Number two, I think really is probably the most important part is what I call “taming the beast” and so that was something I had to come to grips with when I was on my suspension. When I was on my suspension, I spent a week at a small little coffee shop, just deconstructing my life, and one of the things I realized that there was always this force that always seem to trip me up whenever I started getting some momentum.

It was this unknown force that was my constant companion, it was a negative part of me trying to figure out my “why”. Whenever I try to do that, there was just resistance. I decided to go ahead and identify it and I started call with the beast — and that’s what I call it in the book, I call it the beast.

The beast is that unknown force that goes to bed with us at night, it whispers in your ear, it’s the one that keeps you from going to sleep. In fact, the other night I woke up at midnight, I had trouble going back to sleep because that’s when the beast starts to whisper and tell you all the negative things and things that aren’t going right and you wake up with that. It’s constantly there, we all have it.

In order to get past it, I had to figure out a way to tame it so, I came up with what I call “The Seven Elements of The Perfect Day” and the whole purpose of it is to put that beast that we all have to deal with, whether it’s whispering or screaming, whether it’s prevalent in our life in the back seat but it’s always present, you got to tame it and it’s a daily habit. I outline “The Seven Habits of The Perfect Day” which is basically insulating yourself from the beast. If you’re going to live a life of significance, you’re going to have to tame that little sucker, right? 

The third element is the power of encouragement. At the end of the day, if you’re going to live a life of significance like I mentioned, you’re going to need the help of others. Well, the number one way in which you connect with others is through the power of encouragement. It doesn’t matter who you are, encouragement is like the lifeblood for every human being. 

Every human being needs to have an encouraged spirit so, I talk about how the act of sacrifice and I walk through why sacrifice is the most prevalent way to connect with other human beings and the power behind that. And when you start to master that, you start to attract the right people in your life because it’s one thing to have people in your life, it’s another thing to have the right people in your life. 

That was another thing I had to come to grips with was who I was surrounding myself with and I need to surround myself with the right people. Then it goes to number four, once you encourage the right people — after you go through that portion of the book, then the next part of the book we talk about, well, how do you influence those around you that you’re doing life with because at the end of the day, the journey of life is basically change. 

You know, my mother always said the one thing you can count on is nothing ever stays the same. Things are always changing and as you’re evolving in your journey and you are doing life with others, they are going to have to evolve with you and if they don’t evolve with you, then that’s when gaps and expectations happen. That’s when relationship start to break and they begin to fray and so I walk through how do you — 

When you identify the people you’re going to do life with, how do you guide the levers of change and work through that? I outline that. Then the last one, it’s all about mastering what I call — well, mastering communication and human dynamics. At the end of the day, human dynamics is the thing that every one of us are constantly trying to fight with, you know? Get to the point to what people do no longer surprises you. 

In fact, when people go through my training, I always tell them that once you’re done with my training you’ll never be offended by people anymore because once you understand why people do what they do, it’s much easier then to do life with them instead of being offended by what they do. Evaluate what they do, so you can continue in a lifelong relationship with them. I walk through that human dynamics element and communication piece to managing expectations. 

Then once you go through all five of those, then what you do is you have a framework now that’s going to allow you to find the key here is your path to significance — not what I think significance is what you think significance is — and on the other side of it is where peace lies and it is a beautiful thing. 

Benji Block: The five are excellent. The way the book is laid out is really helpful and I want to deep dive into a couple of the five, and then obviously, we want to challenge people to go pick up the book to get everything you sort of just walk through at a deep level. Let’s go back to number one here, talk about the spiritual journey of it. How did you identify what a meaningful life looked like for you? 

As you are thinking of now you’re helping others identify what that looks like for themselves but where did you begin on that journey? What questions were you asking that started to really help frame that for you? 

Erick Rheam: Yeah, that’s a good question, Benji, that’s a really good question. When I had to figure out what a meaningful life was to me, I had to put on the right filter and the filter, what that would do is it would provide me the right filter of really what was going to make sense for me moving forward. Because the good news at the end of that suspension was the one thing I realized is even though I was failing at my marriage, I still had my wife. 

Even though I screwed up with my dad, I still had my father and even though I was suspended, I still had my job. I was going to have to make some changes and so there is two fundamental questions I had to ask myself to help me identify what my meaningful life was. Number one was I had to get reacquainted with what my passion was and this is a big one because the passion of your life is what gives you the fuel that’s going to allow you to rise above chaos. 

Because chaos is going to be waiting for you around every corner. You can’t avoid it, you can’t avoid catastrophe. You can’t avoid global pandemics or health issues, things that just happen in life but you can rise above it and the way you do that is with your passion. That’s the fuel and so I had to ask myself a couple of questions. One is, what is it that drives me but more importantly, what am I willing to suffer for? 

That’s what true passion is. When you have a true passion for something, Benji, then you’d be willing to suffer for it. I use motherhood [which] is probably the best way to describe it. I mean, if you’re ever been in a birthing room to watch someone give birth, you see the true passion of a mother and what that mother was going to go through for a child and what they’re willing to suffer for that child and so I had to ask myself what was that. 

For me, what I realized is what got me in trouble when I got suspended is my very passion and that is I just have a passion for people. I can’t explain it, I don’t know why but the bottom line is ever since I was a kid, I just love to be around people. The more, the better. I love to make friends, I am energized. For some people, if you go to a room with 35 people in it, they’re like, “I have to get me out of here.” 

For me, it’s like that’s 35 potential friends and so I am motivated by people and I wanted to be around people, so that’s number one. The second way I was able to help me start to identify a meaningful life is; it’s one thing to have a passion, it’s another thing to align it with what I am uniquely talented and qualified to do. So I had to identify, and what was it that I am strong in and I need to align that with my passion. 

If I did that, that’s when this meaningful part of my life begin to take shape and form and so for me, I’d ask myself a couple of questions. One was, what comes easy to me? Another one, what do other people say about me and where are my opportunities come in, and just to kind of keep it short, when I answer those three questions I realize that I had a unique talent for communication. 

For whatever reason, I can take complicated ideas, I can streamline them and bring it to a level that it’s easy for people to consume based on how I communicate it. If I take the power of communication and my desire to be around people, what I begin to realize is I need to start to pursue things that allowed me to communicate things that I am passionate about with people that I care about. 

Then ultimately, a meaningful life started leaning towards what’s I’m doing now and that is to travel around the country and communicate the good news that there is a path to significance. So that’s how you start to identify what a meaningful life looks for you. 

Developing Filters and a Community Is Key to Aligning With Your Purpose

Benji Block: You said something a couple of times a couple different ways that I want to hone in on. You said you had to reconnect with your “why”. You said it differently, you said “reacquaint”, you have to get reacquainted with your passion. I wonder have you identified people as a passion before hitting rock bottom and then you kind of strayed from that or for the first time in your life, back in 2005 and obviously after that, were you starting to for the first time really get acquainted with and asked the right questions so you could uncover that? 

Erick Rheam: Yeah, I always knew I had a passion for people but the problem was I was really naïve about it. You know, it is a dangerous thing when you put yourself out there just with anybody and so as a young man and not experienced, you know, the dark side of humanity too — and I talk about that in the book where I faced my dark side of humanity for the first time when we were in Bosnia and I realized that there was a dark side to humanity that I was just naïve to. 

It’s one thing to have a passion, it’s another thing to have an unfettered passion that’s not aligned with your strength. So just being around people but just being around people just to be around them with no purpose whatsoever, that’s where I was getting myself in trouble. Whereas, I realized while I do have a passion for people even though it was people that got me suspended. That was the part I had to come to grips with. 

That’s when I had to ask myself, “Am I willing to suffer to be around people?” because when you put yourself out there like I am as an author, as a speaker, you put yourself out there for criticism for people to sometimes bring their own issues that sometimes can cause harm to you. Well, I am willing to suffer through that because of that passion but just suffering through it’s one thing but do it in a way that makes sense. 

Meaning that I am going to do it in a very purposeful way, meaning I want to communicate through a very purposeful way as just opposed to just getting in front of people to get in front of people. That was the difference. Once I understood the passion side of it but understood I was missing my — using it within my strength — once I put those two things together, that’s when I was able to take my passion and use it for good. Does that make sense? 

Benji Block: It does make sense and I think that it lends itself really well to it. Actually, another chapter you have in the book where you talk about clarity is everything because you started to hone in on something you knew that generally, you were good at certain things or maybe that you were energized by people, but that clarity provided seemingly everything for you to really set you on a different path. 

Let’s talk about that for a second because you get really practical. You share like your purpose statement, which I could read for in a second but then you have a personal vision, a mission, values, right? Talk to me through how that clarity around your purpose has been absolutely life-changing for you. 

Erick Rheam: Well, yeah because the thing that I begin to realize as I start[ed] to get some momentum in my life, Benji, there was a difference between good opportunities and great opportunities and at some point, you are going to be hit with so many decision points it can be overwhelming and the only way that you could start to manage those decisions and say, “Okay, I want to go down this path as opposed to this path” is you have to have a filter in which you run those decisions through. 

That’s where I had to get some clarity on some really key things like, what is my purpose really? What is it that I needed to do today that is going to move the needle, that’s going to allow me to live within my purpose? And when things come my way, that’s obviously not for that purpose even though it might be cool, it might be a great opportunity on its surface but it is not the right opportunity for me based on the filters I have. 

Having a couple of filters like that: my purpose, where is my vision, where do I want to be five years from today, ten years from today so when I get these decision points, I have to ask myself, “Is that going to move me towards my vision or is it going to distract me from my vision?” I didn’t have these filters before as a young man and so I was going down so many different paths. 

I was chasing ghosts and that is part of the reason I got frustrated because I had no filter system and that’s what clarity does. It gives you those right filters. 

Benji Block: Yep, so with those filters now, do you have a personal filter and a professional filter? Do you let all those things run together? Just practically, how do you think about the different areas of your life and in creating that kind of cohesive purpose? 

Erick Rheam: That’s a good question, you’re really good at this, Benji. So you’re obviously working within your strength. So how I did that was, I think the main thing for me was, is that when I got hit with maybe an idea of something I wanted to do, I just started going through, “Okay, does this match purpose? Does this match vision? Does this match my mission?” and surrounded myself too with the right people that I can counsel with and say, “What do you think?” 

I don’t make any decisions anymore without getting permission from different people in my life and I do that not because it’s a control thing, I do that because people see my life at angles that I don’t see it. They have my best interest in mind and they help me identify blind spots and I didn’t have that either before as I would make decisions. I didn’t have people I would check with to say, “What do you think on this?” that would uplift me and edify me and that’s made a big difference in my life as well. 

Benji Block: All right, so one more question on that because I love where you’re going and we’ve touched on the value of having people around you several times here, so I don’t want to just gloss over this. I think there are people where they identify “the community around me maybe needs to shift or it needs to change or I don’t know who I would ask to give me a different angle.” 

Did you feel like you already had a pretty solid community that you just weren’t tapping into, Erick? Did you have to go out and make brand-new friends and a brand-new community? How did you start to really tap into a network of people that helped you elevate your life? 

Erick Rheam: Yeah, I don’t think it was necessary to go out and find new people. I think the main thing was I had to identify who the people that I were connecting with that I needed to lean into and who were the folks that I was connecting with, maybe I need to not lean into as much. That was the main thing and also realizing that you can only maintain and develop so many relationships, and also understanding that some of the relationships I have won’t be with me forever. 

They’re seasons of life, right? When I was going through rearing young children, there were some people in our life that [were] very important at that time that [are] not as important now, right? We lived out in Colorado by ourselves. We didn’t have family, so we had a group of people that was really helping us manage that season of life that’s not necessary now because we don’t have babies anymore, it’s different. 

I’m in a wealth-building mode right now, so I have people in my life right now that are really good with wealth and numbers and finances that I didn’t have several years ago. I think part of it was understanding, “Okay, this season of life that I am in, these are the unique challenges that I am faced with right now, and who in my life can I call on and develop relationships to help me through this?” 

The key though is that whenever identified — let’s say, Benji, you’re one of those people — the key is that this has to be a give and take, meaning that I have to invest in the relationship and it can’t be just me going to you asking for stuff all the time. Instead what it was, and that’s where I get in later in the book about communicating human dynamics where, Benji, you have to see it as a win for you, so I had to enter win-win relationships. 

Where I was adding value to you and you were adding value to me. Now, this is hard for a guy like me because I love people and so I like having a lot of people in my life. It’s one thing having 250 close relationships, it’s another thing identifying others 250. There are seven of them that are really important to me right now and I got to be intentional on that. What I did was I identified the phase of life I was in and identified what relationships are most important right now in those phases of life and how can I add value in those relationships and be intentional with those relationships. That’s how I approached it.

Benji Block: So good. Well, we’re going to start to wrap this conversation up, Erick, but I know the tagline to this book, I will read it again here, “Five Principles to Discover Significance and Live in Peace”. There is that second part, right? “Live in Peace” and it’s one thing to just chase significance and meaning but then also to live in peace, I mean, we could have a separate conversation, a separate interview where we just tackle that topic. 

When it comes to that peace side of the equation, what do you present in this book as far as what peace looks like? Do you have a definition that we can kind of roll with and a way to think about living in peace? 

Erick Rheam: Yeah, I think living in peace is when you know that you’re living a life that with every action and every step and every ounce of your being is done on purpose and when you do that and you have purpose in your actions then there is peace around that. It is not like peace isn’t like laying in a beautiful sunny field with rainbows and the wind at your face and you relax, that’s not what I’m talking about. 

Peace, you can be at peace in the middle of an intense battle for your mind and your marriage and for your community and still be at peace. The thing with peace for me is just knowing that when you get out of bed, you know that you have a clear idea of what you need to go do with your life, who you’re going to do with it, and why you’re going to do it and because of that, you have peace in your actions and that’s ultimately to me what peace feels like. 

It is not living a life without issues and stuff. It is living a life on purpose and when you live a life on purpose, peace will be your constant companion. 

Benji Block: Fantastic. Well, Erick, thank you for spending time here with us on Author Hour. For those that want to stay connected to you and to your work, how can people do that? 

Erick Rheam: Just my name man, erickrheam.com, that’s Erick Rheam. I am the only Erick Rheam in the world as I can tell, Benji. When I Googled myself, I said it, I did Google myself before. 

Benji Block: Yeah, you’re lucky. 

Erick Rheam: Yeah, my name when I Google, I am the only one out there that is spelled that way so I could thank my parents for that. 

Benji Block: That’s good. I am not the only Benji Block in the world and the domain has already been stolen. I’ve been in that fight but hey, the book is called, Rise Above Chaos: The Five Principles To Discover Significance and Live in Peace. You can find it on Amazon now. I know it’s going to be a great resource for so many. Erick, thank you for being here on Author Hour today with us. 

Erick Rheam: Thanks Benji, it was a pleasure. Thanks for having me.