The Work: From Prison To Freedom – with Eldra Jackson – Episode #48

Eldra Jackson III spent a large part of his life as a convict in the US prison system. Inside prison, he encountered a circle of men who led him to overcome his darkness and find healing. He is now the Co-Executive Director of that organization, called Inside Circle. This work was covered in the documentary called The Work.

Join me in learning about Eldra’s life story – how he went from serving 24 years of a life prison sentence in California to becoming a successful businessman whose mission is to help heal and mentor other men for whom all hope is lost.

In this episode we discuss:

  • The prison industrial complex in the United States.

  • Eldra’s life journey and what led him to serving a life sentence.

  • Why Eldra made many decisions from a place of trauma.

  • How childhood trauma can affect your nervous system and behavior later in life.

  • What is a “good convict”?

  • The common mindset among incarcerated people.

  • The difference between prison and rehab

  • What retirement looks like for a prisoner.

  • How Eldra turned his life around and transformed his mindset.

  • The importance of looking inward to heal.

  • How Eldra got introduced to Inside Circle while in prison.

  • Therapy circles in prison.

  • Changing the way we view and treat hurt people.

  • Why systems only exist because we allow them to.

  • How to create change in the prison system.

  • Why countries need to learn from each other once they’ve developed solutions to societal problems.

  • What’s next for Inside Circle?

  • How trauma survivors can redirect their energy to good things in the world.

  • Inside Circle’s mission.

Eldra’s Links:

Eldra’s TedTalk
(How I Unlearned Dangerous Lessons About Masculinity)

The Work Documentary
(note: you will have to pay for this documentary, but it is VERY worth it)




How to get involved: Inside Circle’s Website