Life After The Military - Matt Kellam

Charlie Mike Channel


YouTube player

In this exceptionally powerful and informative episode of Life After the Military, Lee and Howie talk with former Marine, Matt Kellam. Matt serves as the Dominion Energy Military and Recruitment Program Coordinator. Dominion Energy, a veteran friendly company, historically hires 1 of every 5 employees with a veteran background. Dominion Energy has been in the top 10 of veteran friendly employers since 2008. Matt talks eloquently and with vulnerability about how he strengthens his mental fitness and how committed he is to help Dominion Energy take great care of veterans, their families, and create partnerships with the communities they serve.

Matt's LinkedIn:

Dominion Energy:

Troops to Energy Jobs:

Show notes

0:00 Lee opens the podcast

00:42 Lee introduces Matt Kellam

02:22  Matt describes how his service in the Marine Corps shaped him

10:26 Lee reinforces the value of military service

15:12  Matt shares his experiences and stories about transition from the military and his experiences and struggles as a student veteran

26:55 Matt describes how he began to work with Dominion Energy and his family’s history with the company

32:24 Matt explains how Dominion Energy created strategic partnerships with the communities they serve

40:17 Howie and Matt talk about the Dominion Energy leadership team’s commitment to helping veterans

1:00:44 Matt describes the Troop to Energy Jobs Program which helps other employers build a military veteran friendly transition and hiring program

1:03:40 Matt shares Dominion Energy’s charitable commitment to veterans with a partnership to host an annual senior PGA tournament in the Richmond area

1:07:00 Lee gives Matt his book title

1:08:03 Matt defines what mental fitness means to him, personal challenges he had and what he does to strengthen his own mental fitness

1:20:02 Lee closes out the episode


The Grounded Canary

Her Journey Channel


YouTube player

Beth Shaha, Certified Life Coach and Founder of The Grounded Canary shares with us her journey of how a mission trip to Romania changed her forever and led her down a path of leaving her career in the higher education industry to becoming a certified life coach. Beth provides great insights on how we can start being more curious about who we are and show compassion versus judgement. She encourages us to think about our internal narratives and change our perspective on how we approach our lives.

Guests Social Media Links:






Read More

Key Takeaways:

0:00 Intro

0:55 Beth talks about the term wayfinder, what it means and the kind of things a wayfinder does

2:54 Beth shares her journey of where she came from, why she decided to pivot and build her company Grounded Canary and become a certified life coach

11:18 Beth also shares advice to people who haven’t found their purpose yet and those that have the purpose but are afraid to make the transition

14:02 Beth talks about how people put shackles on themselves without even noticing, what they need to do to realize the limiting beliefs they have and how they can change that

18:21 Beth talks about why people should be compassionate about themselves rather than be judgmental towards themselves

21:58 Beth talks about ways to realize that you’re in a bad situation, how to not beat yourself about it, and how to be curious to know what you can do to get out of it

25:58 Beth shares a technique you can use to help be able to pull yourself out of a situation that you are in and look at it from a different angle to help you solve the problem

29:32 Beth shares some resources that people can learn from more about some tools and tricks to use to better themselves

Books Mentioned:

The Work by Byron Katie: 

Walking Back The Cat: 

Shows Mentioned:

Kristin Neff: 

Positive Psychology:

Quotes Mentioned:

“Where you are is a great place to start.”

“The power of story is inevitable.”

“Fear screams, intuition whispers.”

“Basic pausing and noticing is the first step towards finding your way and finding your purpose.”

“Limiting beliefs could be about anything and they’re beliefs that keep you shackled.”

“Knowledge is power, knowledge is truth, and knowledge helps us to see.”

“If we use our now to inform our then, it’s freedom.”

“Create a space that allows you to look at a situation rather than be in it.”

“An emotion only lasts 90 seconds, the only reason it would last longer is if you continue to re-engage.”


Understanding What’s Happening on the Other Side of the Keyboard

YouTube player


“During the pandemic, you kind of had to face your mind.” COVID-19 was certainly a strain on all of us in one way or another and forced us to reckon with the importance of mental health. This re-evaluation was particularly prevalent in the transitioning workplace. Rayne Steinberg, Co-Founder and CEO of digital asset investment firm Arca, joins Jenn to talk about his own mental fitness journey as well as his team’s approach to fostering a company culture that emphasizes clear communication, ownership and an open awareness of the evolving ways to support employee wellness.


Show notes

:49 Rayne shares a little bit of background about himself and his business and family

1:50 Rayne’s definition of “mental fitness” in relation to ARCA

3:44 Rayne discusses that being part of a well-known family sometimes affected his mental wellness

7:26 Rayne explains how he implements mental fitness as a leader, how mass media and popular sentiment skew the realities of leadership, and how a public family controversy helped him to deal with internal struggles

12:57 Rayne discusses that his team has strategized and evolved with the society and the shift to promoting mental health in the workplace

15:07 Rayne outlines his company’s culture, where people feel like owners

17:55 Jenn and Rayne stress the importance of and value of clear communication at the workplace

20:24 At Arca, Slack and email are limited to informal messages, fostering clearer conversations

22:57 Rayne gives his view of the future of mental fitness/mental wellness in the workplace and details the successful company culture at ARCA

26:23 Rayne shares how taking distance from work to let the mind regenerate benefits his company

31:20 Rayne shares encouraging words for the masses, “its okay”


Books Mentioned:

Marc Randolph – That Will Never Work: The Birth of Netflix and the Amazing Life of an Idea

The Four Agreements – Don Miguel Ruiz


Quotes Mentioned:

“Mental wellness is really a very pliable, healthy mind, that helps you deal with a very changeable world.  A well balanced healthy mind is able to cope with adversity.”

“Flexibility and optionality are super important in this world and you can’t do that without a healthy mind”.

“During the pandemic, you kind of had to face your mind”.

“Everyone is having their own human experience”

“..In an increasingly optic-driven society, where we have a lot of exposure to success stories. We only get to hear the books of those who made it, so there’s a real survivorship bias on these things. People don’t realize how much good fortune and luck goes into these things. ”

“With the way I was raised in this very public way, one of the most helpful things is that we had a disintegration of that, very publicly as well, and that was no longer a pressure that was on you… I was forced to face what was going on internally and have people see very bad things going on, and it wasn’t fatal.”

“Be comfortable with things that weren’t as great, but not letting them be paralyzing.”

“Skills and aptitude’s are different, not necessarily better than the other”

“It hard to understand how much human interaction goes on in the workplace…. It’s hard to quantify, but you feel it in its absence.”

“The less context you have in interactions, the more you’re able to fill in on your own”

“You have to understand what’s going on, on the other side of that keyboard”

“Communication is a two way street. Whatever you say doesn’t matter, you’re looking to communicate something on the receiving end.”

“This virtual world has made the labor pool fluid and almost infinite…. But there’s also an incredibly broad pool for the applicant…”

“Find something that works for you, that you see the good results in, and be honest with it.”