As a retired US Navy SEAL veteran, I know all too well the physical and emotional toll that serving our country can take on a person. When I left the service, I had a litany of issues to deal with, including the emotional decompression I experienced and the effects of physical injuries I acquired during my years of service working within special operations forces. After trying various treatments and therapies, I had another SEAL brother share some CBD with me, and I started to learn more about its potential to help alleviate what I was experiencing.
I haven’t been shy about my post SEAL team life and especially the first year and a half after my retirement. I started using alcohol to self-medicate in an attempt to tone down the anger I was feeling. I also experienced physical pain throughout my body, and I wasn’t willing to commit to a life of prescription medicine that would likely harm me in the long haul rather than address my problems.
A SEAL brother of mine shared with me a bag of his CBD gummies, and I started to take them. I noticed that my pain was lessening, and I wasn’t as angry as I had been in the past. Eventually, I found myself becoming more even-tempered inside and less angry. Then I ran out of gummies, and the anger started to build again. I bought another bag of gummies, and the anger started to diminish again, and I thought, “Hey there’s something to this.”
So I started a CBD company.
CBD, or cannabidiol, is a compound found in the cannabis plant that has been shown to have a variety of potential health benefits. Unlike its cousin THC, which is the psychoactive compound responsible for the “high” associated with marijuana use, CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects. Instead, it interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating a variety of physiological processes, including pain perception, mood, and sleep.
I wanted to create a product that was not only effective but also trustworthy and transparent. The Navy SEAL ethos is one I don’t take lightly and resonates with my personal and professional core values. I know firsthand the importance of integrity and honesty, and I wanted my company to reflect those values.
One of the main reasons I started a CBD company was to provide other veterans with an alternative to traditional pharmaceutical treatments for conditions like chronic pain, anxiety, and PTSD. Many veterans are prescribed a metric shit ton of prescription meds, including opioids for chronic pain, which can be highly addictive and have dangerous side effects. CBD, on the other hand, has been shown to have few side effects and a low risk of addiction.
In addition to providing veterans with an alternative to traditional pharmaceuticals, I wanted to create a company that supported the effort to educate and prevent veteran service members suicide, which is climbing at an alarming rate. It’s something I speak of when I travel and address business leaders across the country.
Starting a CBD company, not only as a retired Navy SEAL veteran from Naval Special Warfare but as a small business owner, has not been without its challenges. There is still a lot of stigma surrounding cannabis and CBD, and it can sometimes be difficult to navigate the complex legal landscape. However, I believe that the potential benefits of CBD are worth the effort, and it’s an established alternate form of treatment for many. I think we’re still at the beginning of really understanding what CBD oil can do for the active service members of our armed forces as well as our veterans. In my opinion, this is our new mission – to combat the individual forces that separate us from living our best life and focus on post-career care. Negligence, ignorance, and stagnation for treatment is our new enemy.
If you want to learn more about how I cultivate a strong mindset and apply the use of CBD in my life, check out a recent podcast I was a guest on as I talk about all of this.