Mark Yuzuik interviews his best friend and business partner, Lloyd Mabrey, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. In this compelling, thought-provoking discussion, Lloyd reveals why he considers Parkinson’s Disease to be his life’s Greatest Gift. He shares how he found the perspective that helped him out through the challenges that usually hinders people from moving forward. Listen to this podcast episode as Mark and Lloyd discuss positively transforming our lives despite unwanted changes.
Welcome to the Get Your Mind Set podcast with Mark Yuzuik. Mark is a master hypnotist, author, speaker, and success coach who has studied human behavior over the last twelve years. In this pilot episode, he talks about the value of getting into the right mindset and having the right attitude to turn your situation around and get the results you want. It’s your mind, and it’s time for you to get your mind set up for success.
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Parkinson’s Disease: My Greatest Gift To Seeing The World Differently With Lloyd Mabrey
I’m with my good buddy. I’ve been best friends with him for many years, Mr. Lloyd Mabrey. We’re in Washington State performing. He came up here and I said, “I want to do a show with you.” He says, “Yeah.” I said, “What are you doing?” He said, “I came up here to see my buddy.” We are not only best friends, but we’re also business partners as well. One thing, when you have a business partner, a best friend, you can grow your life and be fulfilled in many different areas. Does that mean you don’t come across challenges and things like that? We’ve made millions of dollars and lost it. We’ve made it and lost it. We always stuck together as friends. We never let our friendship get in the way of business. We always had each other’s back. Sometimes you’ve got to have your brother’s back even when he needs it the most.
He’s an entertainer. He’s one of those improvisationalists. All of us have gifts out there. I know that you have a gift. You’ve got to acknowledge it, accept it. It’s not a matter of it being prideful. I’ve got all this pride. It’s a matter of being proud. There’s a difference between pride and being proud. You have a gift and you’ve got to find that gift within you and find your purpose in life. When you’re on your purpose, sometimes you get thrown a little curveball in there. I remember watching America’s Got Talent and a football player, he got nailed with a heart disease and all that. His career ended right on the spot. At that moment, when that happens to you, you lose your identity.
When you lose your identity, what do you do? Basically, you have two choices in life. One is either you find out what your purpose is and why things happened to you and for you and you move forward and you’re an inspiration to other people that are going through the same challenges or you become a victim. Those are your choices. I hate to be so direct, but that’s the bottom line. Things are going to happen in your life. It’s how you deal with that and what you’re going to say. What’s it going to take to make it matter to you? How is your life going to be fulfilled or is it going to be not fulfilled?
I remember watching this gentleman on America’s Got Talent and he’s a phenomenal magician. Every time he ended every performance, he goes, “It’s a great day to be alive,” because he was supposed to die. I was grateful for that line because it made me realize we may be living, but are we alive? What’s the sense of living if you don’t have a life, if you don’t have a purpose? This body is here, but it’s our mind that decides are we going to move forward or are we going to be in prison? That’s what I loved about him. He turned his so-called career-ending illness into a brand-new career.
He made a difference and there are many things that happened to him. Tony Robbins always says, “Things don’t happen to you. They happen for you.” It’s a great way to look at things. I’ve been best friends with Lloyd maybe for many years. We fish together. We ski together. His mom and dad are like my parents. They treat us like that and it will always be like that. About several years ago, I noticed my little buddy, he got a little twitch in his hand and he plays guitar and all that. I go, “What are you doing, buddy?” He goes, “It’s a little nervous reaction.” As the years go on, we discovered that he had developed Parkinson’s. Parkinson’s is not a fun thing to deal with.
If you know anybody who’s got Parkinson’s, it’s hard because you want to do something for them. You want to take the pain, especially if it’s a family or your best friend. You can do anything. If I could do one thing to take this away from my buddy, I would do that in a second. That’s not reality. Sometimes reality is things are going to happen and it’s how you deal with it. Look at Stephen Hawking. You look at all these other people. I know people that are in prison that are happier than people that are walking around millionaires and they’re miserable. They’re in more prison than the people that are in jail. He discovered this Parkinson’s and it’s not an easy thing. He couldn’t make phone calls. He had tremors that were so severe that you start to wonder, “Why did this happen to me?” He’s a different person now, but you’ve got to realize he went through surgery. Maybe you could tell that.
I want Lloyd to tell you a little bit about how he came across and some of the challenges, but also some of the successes. What do you go through? How do you regain your identity? What do you recommend to people that have it but also people that are dealing with your loved ones? I know my mom is starting to shake and we think she’s got Parkinson’s. It makes you wonder. You don’t know what’s going to happen to you, but if you’re prepared, you can at least learn how to say, “I still got a life and I’m going to live my life because today is a great day to be alive.” My buddy, Lloyd, maybe he’s going to tell you a little story about how he handles it and all that good stuff.Your friends will limit you because who you hang around with is important. Click To Tweet
He had a surgery and stopped his tremors. Are there challenges in that? Yes, there are. Lloyd Mabrey, thanks for being on my show, best friend for many years, business partner, be together forever. We probably would share the same grave. That’s how much we love each other. Here’s my buddy, Mr. Lloyd Mabrey. Lloyd, thanks for being here. You used to be a speaker. We used to do the real estate seminars together and all that. You used to speak and now you’ve got a challenge. The Parkinson’s didn’t affect your speech, did it? What happened?
Your vocal cord has two branches that come down here, one in the middle. They’re vibrating and that makes sound. When they are stiff, you need to move twice as much, three times as much air through there. I’m like you, I’m off of the cuff, but I have to learn to rehearse and think about what I’m going to say so I can get through the sentence.
It’s almost like having a stroke for some people. You didn’t have a stroke, did you?
No, I had a seizure.
You had your seizure when you went into surgery to get the tremor stopped. While you were in the surgeries is when you had your seizure?
That did affect your speech and everything else?
How did it affect you because you’re a twelve-string guitar player and how did that affect that? Did it affect that in any way?
Tremendously. I’ve had to look at other venues in my life as an opportunity. It’s one of those things that your friends will limit you because who you hang around with is important. People will say, “If you’re dealt with lemons, make lemonades.” I’d say if you’re dealt with lemons, make lemon meringue pie.
You’re always up. You’re always happy. We used to go all four-wheeling, skiing, fly fishing and skeet shooting and traveling all over. You’re the bubbly guy. You’re the guy that everyone says, “Hang around, Lloyd. He’s got the energy. He’s got the happiness.” There has to be a time in your life where you stop and you go, “Why me? What’s going on?” Did you have any depressed times? Did you have to deal with that or was everything pretty much now you dealt with it? How did you deal with that if indeed you had that?
If it happens to you, you’re going to have feelings about it, but it’s what you focus on. I love Larry The Cable guy. He talks about his sister and all these moles all over her body. They go to the swamp and they were walking down to do the swamp. They see a guy who has no legs selling shoes, boots. He said, “Look at that guy, he has no legs and he’s selling shoes.” She says, “You’re right.” I’m glad she didn’t hear the guy in the wheelchair with no legs. He’s a good guy. Did you see all the holes?
I do remember him talking that story. He is a funny guy. Take it in perspective. Your handicap is not your disability. Your mindset is either it’s your ability or disability? My niece has cerebral palsy. She’s got a YouTube channel now and she is rock and rolling. It’s called Living With Disability, living with cerebral palsy. She’s got three kids, husband, job. She can’t walk, but she’s got a scooter. She’s a realtor. I remember they did a ten-minute interview on her and she talked about all the realists and all that.
I said, “You mean to tell me you never mentioned Uncle Mark or Lloyd one time in that whole thing?” She goes, “Uncle Mark, I forgot.” She has a tattoo that says, “Ability.” If you think about it, there are people out there that are disabled, that are physically in great condition. There are people that are physically not in great condition. Look at Nick, no arms and no legs, who are able to have a fulfilled life. Our life and our limitations aren’t based on what we’re dealt with, what we have physically. It’s how we deal with them. I remember this story, I was talking to you, I’ve got a friend, Karen and Robert in San Diego. We talked about doing something. He’s got the same Parkinson’s, but he’s also blind. He went through surgery and he got rid of his blindness. He’s always happy, always excited.The more positive prayers you interject in your thought process, the more you see through the day. Click To Tweet
He even volunteered for my hypnosis show. It was great. He didn’t go under, but I was thinking, “How am I going to do this? Every time I touched my forehead, he’s not going to see me after you.” He’s a keyword or something, but he wants to do something about dealing with Parkinson’s attitude and everything else. I said, “I want to talk to my best friend, Lloyd, about how do you deal with it?” I was doing a show and I’ll never forget it. One of the ladies working there came running up and she says, “Mark, you’d have to talk to this couple.” I go, “What’s the matter?” She was almost in a panic, but it wasn’t a panic like a scared panic. It was like an excitement panic. The husband came up and said, “My wife has Parkinson’s. She has severe tremors. She was on your show and she didn’t have a single tremor.” He started crying and they both came back to me.
They were talking to me and they’re like, “For the first time in years, my wife hasn’t had tremors. Is there anything you can do with hypnosis to help with that?” I never thought of that. I’m not a doctor. I don’t know how strong our minds are but I know one thing, they’re pretty strong. If we investigate and at least look into new things, could hypnosis possibly help with that? I don’t know, but I’m willing to give it a shot. If it helps one person, there’s at least a little hope that if it could help one, could it help others? The idea is yes. I remember you saying, “If you could take the right brain and tell it’s the left brain and tell the left brain it’s the right brain, maybe the tremors go away.” I started laughing about that. Maybe that is a solution. Sometimes we’d come up with the greatest idea and not even thinking that they’re given to us because we’re open-minded about it.
The one thing is you’re not able to play anymore. You’re not allowed to perform anymore. You lost your identity. Sometimes some people have to lose their identity and get depressed about it. Did you lose your identity or did you trade your identity in for something else? Why are you here, Lloyd? You’re here because we’re growing our seminars. You’re a part of that seminar. You’ll always be part of the seminar. Maybe you can’t get up there and a guitar like you used to, but how else can you contribute? Where else can we grow? Maybe that’s where we needed you the most. I don’t know. I know one thing, we’ll always be together. What’s your identity now? How do you deal with that? What could you tell if somebody is going through this? If they have Parkinson’s and they want to give up, what would you tell them?
The first thing I would tell them is prayer is positive. The more positive that you interject in your thought process, the more it helps see you through the day. The prayer is huge.
Besides prayer, what else can they do? It’s got to be an attitude. Even prayer is an attitude. Prayer is gratefulness. There’s always an attitude attached to something. I’ve been praying and I still am dealing with it. Let’s say they’re on that path. What’s the next advice you can give them? I don’t have Parkinson’s. I don’t have that right to coach and to assist and to help. I can only give an opinion. You have experience and the one thing you could teach is experience teaches the one thing and it’s a connection. These people have more connection with you because you’ve gone through it and you go through it every day. How do you deal with that every day? What do you do when you wake up?
When I wake up, what am I grateful for? I learned that from Tony. One of the things I’m grateful for in life because they could be gone the next day. What are you grateful for? What are things like that? Not focusing on what you don’t have because what’d you focus on is going to determine how you feel. How you feel is going to determine all about the energy and it’s going to either assist you or tear you down. How do you deal with it every day? What can you help, assist, coach, recommend, give somebody that next level, I don’t want to say hope, I want to say next level of what they need to do so they can feel better? Some real solid answers so they can move forward. This comes from the experience. You’ve dealt with this for several years.
It’s different for everybody. The thing that’s not different is don’t check out, check-in, stay involved in life, be transparent. It’s amazing how many people will come up and go, “You have Parkinson’s, don’t you?” Now they say, “Your Parkinson’s is going away,” because I don’t have any tremors anymore.
Your tremors went away with the surgery and with that, you gained so much. It’s like you took steps forward and maybe slid back a little bit in another area, but it didn’t stop you from being you. You still like to golf. You still like to fish. The thing is now I can beat you in golf every time. I think people need to stay busy doing something and not sit around and go, “Poor me.” For me to sit here and say that, I don’t have a right to say that, but you’ve lived it. You’ve taken your life to the next level in ways that you could not have grown by not having this discomfort and this disease.
I’ve been to the buffet line like the restaurant. When you had the tremors and you’re trying to scoop up peas, better get out of the way.
Deep brain stimulation is what you had the surgery on, in which you went through?
They put electrodes inside your head, the left brain to the right brain. It’s a little bit more complicated. They have something attached and it sends electrical pulses. When they turn that thing on, you’re sitting there and you’ve got these violent tremors. They turn on that machine and that was the first time your body is in a major relief. You can’t believe it.
Did you have tremors when you slept?
That is what blew my mind. When you told me that, I thought when somebody is in a state of relaxation, hypnosis, meditation, whatever you want to call it, sometimes people say, “I don’t want to be hypnotized. It’s losing control.” Forget about that word. Let’s talk about tapping into your subconscious mind. When you can relax your conscious and subconscious and it goes away, is there a chance there are other avenues we haven’t even discovered about Parkinson’s that are untapped, untouched yet where they can get rid of their tremors?Don't check out, check-in, stay involved in life, and be transparent. Click To Tweet
What about medical marijuana? Have you heard about any use of that?
I’ve been involved with that a little bit. I had no therapeutic relief or value that happened for me, but desperate people do desperate things and some of them were sure you do it.
I remember that when the doctor put you on some medication, they misread your prescription, which you know how I feel about that at times, doctors, which is a personal opinion. I love doctors that are real doctors. A pill that’s supposed to be 0.05 and they made a mistake, made it 5.0 and that almost killed you. You became a zombie.
It’s changing in a negative way.
Thank God you had your friends bring you somewhere. We’re going to find out what’s wrong with you. You lose your dignity. It’s almost like you feel people are always staring at you. You feel discomfort in yourself and you don’t want to be around anybody. You go into a state of depression. It’s easy to slip into that. The thing is you have to realize other people are going through the same thing. There’s got to be support programs out there. There’s got to be something like that. I recommend to try everything if you haven’t tried it yet. Try relaxation, try meditation. If you’re okay with medical marijuana, consult your physician, one that is experienced and not, “I don’t know. I don’t do that.” I know people that have cancer, it works for that and all that.
There are many different options out there. People need to say, “Let’s not give up hope. Let’s hope that we continue down the road and find something that’s better for us.” Any final words that you want to say to somebody out there going through what you went through and how can they move forward in their lives and say, “I understand what Lloyd went through. He made it through. Now he’s on a different path and he’s still on purpose.” He’s on a different path, but it’s still on purpose. What would you recommend to those people?
I would stay involved. When you see somebody that has the affliction, don’t shun them off or feel like you’re hanging around somebody that’s weird. Go and tell him, “Have you heard of DBS? Deep Brain Stimulation will change your world and when it changes your world, it changes the way you interact with people.” Take the opportunity to talk to these people and share because many people don’t understand DBS or never have heard of it.
DBS is Deep Brain Stimulation. The other thing is don’t ignore somebody and pretend like they don’t have it. If they’re already at discomfort, uncomfortable and embarrassed that they’re having tremors, break the ice. Don’t wait for them and don’t ignore them. Don’t pretend like, “They’re in line trying to get peas. Can I help you out?” By making a gesture right there sometimes makes a difference and you put a smile on their face. Watch the smile on their face. I bet their tremors slowed down because they’re less stressed. When you’re stressed out, doesn’t that add tremors to your physical body?
There is no doubt that stress causes all kinds of things in the human body, diseases, reactions, afflictions. Kick back and laugh a little bit.
Life’s worth living. Like a football player and magician said, “It’s a good day to be alive.” That’s my buddy, Lloyd Mabrey, best friend, business partner, lifelong brother. I’ll always love him and be with him no matter what. Thank you for reading this blog. I’ll see you in the next episode.
About Lloyd Mabrey
Lloyd is an Entertainer, Musician, Comedian, Singer, Writer and Key Note Speaker that has the unique ability to work with any group or age. Even though he is a Multi-purpose Performer, he is very unique and extremely talented.
From Corporate to Kindergarten Lloyd Mabrey will amaze you with his quick wit, charming but sincere and real personality not to mention his great 12 String Guitar work and crystal clear heartfelt vocals. Lloyd Mabrey is the best you will ever see work an audience.
He is loyal and his work ethic and talent will astound you! His long-term relationships in the business are a living testimonial to Lloyd’s accomplishments and character.
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