cover art for Becoming Your Own Bank: Creating Financial Freedom with John Ensley

The Shift To Freedom

Becoming Your Own Bank: Creating Financial Freedom with John Ensley

Ep. 65

Unlocking financial freedom remains a tantalizing dream for many, but the journey to true independence is fraught with hurdles. In a riveting discussion, Ben Easter and John Ensley peel back the layers of a little-known financial strategy: cash value life insurance. Diving into the mechanics behind these policies, they unveil how cash value accumulates over time and the myriad advantages they hold. From exploiting tax benefits to harnessing policy loans for diverse purposes, the conversation unveils the potential for tax-free retirement income. With an expert's touch, they underscore the significance of tailored policies aligned with unique financial ambitions. Prepare to be enlightened as John divulges the inner workings of this extraordinary financial system, offering invaluable insights and long-term benefits for individuals and enterprising business owners alike.

Tips on becoming your own bank:

  • Unravel the enigmatic realm of Cash Value Life Insurance, a unique pact between individuals and insurance companies that holds the keys to both a life-changing death benefit and a mysterious cash value component. 
  • Discover the myriad of tax advantages concealed within Cash Value Life Insurance, where tax-deferred growth, tax-free policy loans, and a mesmerizing tax-free death benefit can grant you financial power.
  • Take advantage of Policy Loans, the secret weapon of those who wield Cash Value Life Insurance. Ascend to the realm of self-banking, accessing funds to fuel your dreams, from ambitious investments to grand business endeavors, all while basking in the allure of remarkably lower interest rates and unyielding growth.


  • "It's similar to any other savings vehicle, where you're investing money regularly, but without all the restrictions of traditional retirement accounts. The cash value grows over time and can be accessed through policy loans for various purposes." (John | 04:36)
  • "The underlying contract continues to grow, as if you didn't borrow the money, while you can access financing, and you have the potential for tax advantages on both sides of the transaction." (John | 12:35)
  • "Life insurance is one of the most underutilized sections of the tax code. It offers tax-deferred growth, tax-free policy loans, and a tax-free death benefit to beneficiaries." (John | 13:13)


Connect with John Ensley:

Connect with Ben:


Lucid Shift Coaching IG:

Project Candlelight:

Podcast production and show notes provided by

More episodes

View all episodes

  • 82. Enlightenment through Equanimity: Practicing Mindfulness

    Who else wishes they had a more peaceful mind?As an entrepreneur, you're probably used to a busy mind. You might catch yourself procrastinating or hesitating when faced with it. But what if, instead of avoiding discomfort, you could embrace it and use it to improve?Creating peace through mindfulness is about developing a practice of remaining present, observing your thinking, accepting your reality, and managing your mind.In this episode, discover practical approaches that you can incorporate into your daily life to help you notice unresourceful thought patterns and think your way free.Lucid Shift Coaching IG:
  • 81. Building A Product Market Fit Machine with Charles Cormier

    Being an entrepreneur is more than just a job, it’s a way of life. A path of continuous improvement, overcoming challenges, and personal development.In this episode, I talked to Charles Cormier, a many time entrepreneur, biohacker, and ultra athlete.We discuss the enigma of product-market fit and how to turn your business into a success-generating machine.It’s an inspiring jaunt through the topics of rigorous self-improvement, market mastery, and how you can align your work to carve out a path to freedom. It’s just full of gems.Links:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: out Charles’ Podcast here: CEO Wisdom Podcast - Blindspots, energy, values, and AI with Ben Easter: with Charles:Linktree:
  • 80. How to Have Your Own Back in Tough Times

    Ever found yourself in a tough spot where it seems like the world is against you? How do you navigate the stormy seas of life's trials with resilience and grace? In this episode, your Ben Easter and Clayton Olson take you on a journey through embracing hardship and supporting yourself during challenges.In Episode 80, we explore the concept of having your own back during tough times and how to approach challenges with dignity, resourcefulness, and creativity. Ben and Clayton explore the ebb and flow of life's struggles, drawing parallels to the stock market's highs and lows, stressing the importance of aligning with core values, embracing a sense of connection, and harnessing positive energy. They invite you into open conversations about the fear of burdening others with our struggles. Sharing poignant references from Bruce Almighty and Braveheart, this episode is an empowering guide to standing tall amidst life's upheavals.Key Takeaways:The importance of being a friend to yourself in dark timesReplacing self-judgment with unconditional self-loveEmbracing difficulties as opportunities for growth and self-connectionBreaking free from self-imposed isolation during tough timesAligning with principles that are larger than ourselves*The quote “When in doubt, zoom out” is attributed to Reggie WattsLinks:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: with Ben:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight: with Clayton :Website:
  • 79. Reset Your Reality with Gratitude

    How can cultivating gratitude rewire your mindset and enhance your life? Just in time for the holidays, hosts Paige and Ben Easter explore how our internal "search engine" determines what we notice and appreciate. They'll guide you through a gratitude exercise designed to shift your attention gears to a more positive, “glass half-full” perspective.In this episode, Paige and Ben discuss the power of gratitude and its potential to change our perception of reality. Using engaging metaphors and insightful discussions, they discuss the intricacies of the human mind, the influence of the reticular activating system, and how our attention and intentions shape our life experiences. So, whether you're seeking ways to improve your mindset, or reignite the magic of holidays, this is an episode you won't want to skip.Key Takeaways:How gratitude can influence your perception of realityHow gratitude can impact how “lucky” you areThe interconnectedness of your thoughts and your emotional statePractical exercises to help leverage the power of gratitudeLinks:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: Law of Attraction: The Basics of the Teachings of Abraham: Illusion - Old or Young Woman?: with Ben and Paige:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight:
  • 78. Finding Balance Between Ideas and Action with Piper Watson

    Are you struggling to find balance between generating ideas and taking action? Tune in as Ben Easter and guest Piper Watson share insightful strategies on finding equilibrium and creating spaciousness in your life.In this episode, host Ben Easter invites life and business coach Piper Watson to explore the concept of balance between ideas and action. Drawing inspiration from the yin yang symbol and the seasons, they discuss the importance of embracing stuckness as an opportunity for growth and using thoughtful questions to navigate through it. Piper shares her expertise on the Heroine's Journey, the energetics of masculine and feminine energies, dreaming, visualization exercises, and the power of reflection. They touch on topics such as prioritization, breaking tasks into simple steps, accountability, and the role of spaciousness in finding clarity and freedom in life and business.Key Moments:[4:15] Understanding the Heroine's Journey and the importance of going inward for answers[9:58] How to approach and overcome challenges around your dreams[20:32] Balancing reflection and action in life for more freedom and fulfillment[26:40] The concept of cycles of action and reflection to create priorities[33:06] Introducing the "rule of three" to filter ideas and take inspired action steps[38:52] Embracing spaciousness as a superpower and prioritizing self-care and wholeness[47:20] Nurturing exploration, trust in the process, and following the breadcrumbs to find clarityLinks:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: with Ben:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight: with Piper:Website:
  • 77. The ABCs of Optimism with Paige Easter

    Do you ever find yourself caught in a negative spiral? You might be having a human experience that will pass in time. Or you might be stuck in pessimistic thinking. Many of our thoughts and beliefs go unexamined, and simply shining a flashlight on them can bring a profound shift to your life. In this episode of "The Shift to Freedom," hosts Paige and Ben Easter dive into the ABCs of optimism, exploring how examining our thoughts can lead to a freer and more fulfilling existence. By questioning the truth and usefulness of our thoughts, mindfully exploring their consequences, and embracing a healthy assessment of optimism, this episode provides the tools to break free from toxic positivity and create an authentic connection with ourselves and others.Key Moments:04:51 Mindfulness and awareness: The power of questioning our thoughts and beliefs11:24 Practical tools: Thought logs and externalizing our thoughts16:57 Cognitive distortions: Recognizing broad overgeneralizations and language traps22:15 True and useful: The importance of letting go of thoughts that don't serve us26:48 Beyond thoughts: Examining thoughts for facts32:56 Martin Seligman's approach to optimism: Truth and usefulness of thoughts39:44 Unpacking mindset issues: Models and practices for shifting our thoughtsLinks:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: Optimism by Martin Seligman: Robbins Emotions Framework: Katie The Work: Castillo The Model Framework: with Ben and Paige:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight:
  • 76. Creating Emotional Freedom with Saren Eads

    Changing your mindset can supercharge your energy levels and free up more time in your life! In this episode of "The Shift to Freedom," host Ben Easter and guest Saren Eads - The Emotional Wealth Coach, discuss the power of shifting your thinking to experience positive change. They explore the impact of embracing anxiety, building emotional wealth, and finding balance in entrepreneurship. Get ready to upgrade your mindset and unlock your limitless potential!Key Moments:[06:18] - Answering unanswered questions and embracing fears head-on[12:45] - Resilience and navigating anxiety in the entrepreneurial journey[21:12] - Turning a side hustle into a thriving business while on maternity leave[29:57] - Balancing personal life and business growth[36:20] - Challenging the belief that hustling is the only way to succeed[42:03] - Overcoming fears of failure and reframing your mindset[48:40] - Creating wealth from the inside out by transforming your relationship with time and energy.Links:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: with Ben:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight: with Saren Eads:Website: Sareneads.comIG: Saren is a life coach to help women take their ideas and turn them into reality through creating emotional wealth. She started her coaching business while pregnant and replaced her salary while on maternity leave in 2021. A big philosophy she lives by is creating time freedom and living your life authentically while making an impact. She now has a multiple 6 figure business 2 years later and is scaling to her first million dollar year. She is someone who is lit up on life and loves to romanticize the little things. She loves to travel, be a mom, and help women have it all however that looks like to them. Dreams are meant to be lived!
  • 75. Authentic Expression - An Antidote to People Pleasing with Paige Easter

    Tired of constantly trying to please others and feeling like you're losing touch with your true self? Want to break free from the people-pleasing trap and start living life on your own terms? Discover how authentic expression can be the antidote you've been searching for.In this philosophical episode, hosts Paige and Ben Easter explore the concept of authenticity and how it can liberate us from the endless cycle of people pleasing. They delve into the underlying challenges of worthiness, the power of resonance, and the importance of understanding our own "yeses" and "nos." With insightful examples and insights, this conversation will empower you to prioritize your needs while fostering genuine connections with others.Key Moments:[08:27] Exploring the irony of kindness as a distraction from deeper issues[13:56] The core challenge of worthiness[18:42] Resonating at our true frequency in the world[23:10] The power of our thoughts and actions[28:47] Understanding accountability and integrity in decision-making[35:20] Embracing authenticity and attracting like-minded individuals[41:15] Redefining selfishness as a positive attributeJoin Paige and Ben as they peel back the layers of people-pleasing and guide you towards a more fulfilling and authentic life. It's time to shift gears and reclaim your power.Links:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: with Ben and Paige:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight:
  • 74. How to Prioritize with Paige Easter

    Are you constantly juggling a never-ending to-do list? Struggling to identify what truly matters in your life and business? In this episode of The Shift to Freedom, Paige and Ben explore the art of prioritization, offering practical strategies to help you gain clarity and focus on what's truly important. Get ready to shift your mindset and discover the freedom that comes with prioritizing effectively.As Ben and Paige explore the concept of prioritization, they delve into the spiritual and practical aspects of determining what truly matters in life and business. From evaluating the wheel of life to understanding task dependencies, they provide insights and tools to help you make conscious choices and find what is useful for you. Tune in for their discussion on the power of prioritizing.Key Moments:[05:12] What would you have wished to have done on your deathbed? Reflecting on mortality as a tool for priority setting.[13:45] The "wheel of life" exercise: A practical approach to evaluating different dimensions of your life.[19:28] Setting personal thresholds: Identifying necessary conditions for improvement in low-rated areas.[26:55] Using the concept of essential value to determine dependencies in business.[32:16] Taking uncomfortable actions: How discomfort can lead to desired outcomes.[39:02] Focus on doing what's truly important: Identifying essentials and avoiding overwhelm.[45:50] The power of acknowledging personal desires and wants, and finding fulfillment in life and relationships.Links:Business Owner Hero Type Quiz: Mindset Gym: Values Podcast: Podcasts:Part 1 - 2 - with Ben and Paige:Website: Shift Coaching IG: Candlelight: