Helping People be Present with Jacob Penaranda

In this episode, we discuss about:

  • Jacob’s story and who he is
  • Becoming your environment
  • Needing to gain respect through violence
  • Advice Jacob would give to his 18 year-old self
  • Dealing through pain through drugs and violence
  • Helping people be present
  • Relative deprivation
  • Primary question
  • How can I find meaning in this?
  • How Jacob has used what he’s learned
  • What Jacob is doing now
  • Responding vs reacting

  • Summary:

    Today I am having a conversation with Jacob Penaranda. He currently strives to end mass incarceration. Jacob speaks wherever he is called to speak. Jacob believes human beings should be treated like human beings if we expect them to be as such. People tend to fear what they don’t know. He believes we need a society that rises up and is there for the community,

    Jacob went to prison for unoccupied burglary and spent the last year of his sentence on confinement. As a child, he grew up in Miami. He gravitated towards violence and wound up serving time for it. Through his journey he has become a huge proponent of reading. He asked himself what his strengths were and was determined to be better and make the most of his experience. He shares in this episode that he would learn 20 new words per week and read anything he could get his hands on.  

    Jacob and I talk about his story and how he got to where he is today. Jacob felt like he became his environment when he was incarcerated. He was able to move past gaining respect through violence and learn how to respond instead of reacting. We dive into relative deprivation, your primary question and how to finding meaning. Jacob has been able to use all that he has learned.


    “I was in prison and of prison.”

    “All of the world is filtered through your perception.”

    “You can’t influence somebody when you feel like you’re being judged.”

    “I was able to find gratitude and appreciate my situation in that moment. It shifted the trajectory of my life as a result of me saying I can’t change this, what would alter my perception of this current situation. And I came to the realization that there are plenty of people on this planet that on my worst day would probably be happy trading places with me.”

    “Some people are the story and some people are the story teller.”

    Links & Resources Mentioned:


    IG @healingflowercbd

    IG @JJAKE777
    FB @hfhempcbd

     FB @aandretti
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