Episode 46 – Stacy Brookman
When you experience trauma those memories are stored in a different part of the brain from regular memories. They are very sharp and they can hide from your own self. They come out when you least expect it. They can direct how we operate in the world – particularly childhood trauma. You can’t live joyfully because there is this stuff going around in your head.
Writing helps put those memories into the place where regular memories are stored – where they can fade.
There is a large body of research around writing to heal. Writing as little as two minutes a day has been found to boost your immune system, make you calmer, make you happier. It is a wonderful tool for anybody to have.
Your Life as a Story by Christine Rainer – recommended book. Not specifically trauma related but it will lead you through writing and discovering your stories.
When you find the words to describe what happened to you then the transformation can take place.
Stacy was married to a sociopath. She was under chronic stress. She never knew when the next attack with happen. And something happened every single week.
She took a memoir class as a release from her situation. When she shared her stories, their jaws would drop.
She recommends you do find a writing group or a coach. Because when she told her story and someone heard that story and just held it and acknowledged the pain – that is an incredible feeling.
Through writing you find out who I am, where I’ve been, what’s happened to me and where I want to go. That clarity is invaluable.
Your story really needs to get out. There is a mind body connection. So your body will also tell you that you have a story that needs to get out through signs of stress.
You don’t know if your audience will be receptive to your story. This can be retraumatising. Make sure you speak to someone who is trauma informed.
You can’t just get over trauma, you need to dig it out and expose it to air in order for it to heal.
When you start writing your stories then you can start finding the words from what happened to you.
They can help you to discover your life theme. When she discovered her own life theme – which was not standing up for herself – she didn’t like it but she realised she could change it. Knowledge of where you have been is incredibly important to help your future self become wiser and more resilient. “I don’t choose to be like that anymore.”
She has been standing up for herself ever since.
She went through a very long, difficult divorce. He husband said “I am going to take the house, I am going to take the kids, I am going to take you down!” She had never experienced this kind of evil before. She got divorced for her kids so they didn’t think this was a normal relationship.
Nobody wants to admit that thy have been abused. But counselling and writing helped her see what part she played. Not that she blamed herself but she realised that she didn’t stand up for herself. When she started writing she was so much calmer going through the divorce.
She started researching and discovered the work of Dr James Pennebaker and others.
She started a website and was teaching some classes at the community college. She wanted to reach a wider audience. So then she started the Real Life Resilience Podcast – stories of recovery from life’s most difficult traumas.
There are so many ways to overcome trauma and you just ned to find the one that is right for you. She also interviews resources – people who can help you overcome trauma in all kinds of different ways.
Everybody can become more resilience – no matter what stage you are at, no matter how much you have been beaten down. You have everything you need inside of you and you can do it.
Things you should write about – here’s what I’m thinking about, here’s what I felt and this is why. Explore your mind in your journal. That is the part that will really help you move forward.
Write three lists. Milestones in your life, desired you’ve had in your life, conflicts in your life. If you can get a list of 10 – 20 in each of those and look across those lists. Where you see commonality between two or three of those lists then start writing about that moment in time. Pinpoint that moment – where were you, what was happening, what did I see, what did I smell, what did I hear, what did I taste, and what did I touch. What did I feel. Then just start free writing. Write for 10 minutes without stopping and see what comes out. Once you start more details will come up.
This works for happy memories too.
Stacy’s personal definition of resilience – the ability to bounce back from adversity and become wiser because of it. If we com through adversity and we don’t do anything about then we are going to repeat it. Until you really get to know and learn what those mistakes were and why you made them you won’t become wiser and more resilient. You have got to learn those lessons not just experience them. You’ve been through it – make it count.
Episode 45 – Dave Conley
Radical self-care – learning to love himself as much as his loved Carole.
Are you dead? No. You’re alive – let’s keep it that way. Drink water, eat and move. All very primal.
This started cracking open the space to some powerful questions. What do you want? I want to live. What kind of life do you want to live? I want a healthy life, I want vocation and achievement that makes sense of my life, I want community, I want relationships.
What do you want?
What will having that do for you?
What is it going to be and how to you want it to be?
A day doesn’t go by when I don’t ask – what is the most important thing? What is it that I want to be doing? And how are they aligned? What are the most important non-negotiable things? It is really easy to just distract ourselves, self sooth ourselves and pretend we feel good.
Self-care is non-negotiable for me because that is how I bring the most the best to my vocation, that is how I bring myself to my relationships, and how I bring myself to my community and what my legacy will be. There is a great big life that I want to live. I’m not going to be on my death bed saying “thank god I spent so much time on Netflix.”
He couldn’t have learned the tools for self-care without friends, community and insatiable curiosity.
The vast majority of people are adventurers in some way – they’re adventurers in their own life. We are meant to be curious about things.
His friend introduced him to a lovely older woman who was quite small but she filled the room with the energy she put off. They had a lovely conversation and she invited him to come up a meeting that she takes every week. There were 100s of people at this thing. I turned to my friend and said “who did you introduce me to?” Her name was Tara Brach.
Then he went to Wisdom 2.0 in San Francisco.
He attended the SIYLI conference which stands for Search Inside Yourself Leadership Institute. Headed by Chade-Meng Tan who introduced mindfulness to Google. He trained in that method for 5 or 6 months.
Getting into the science of things.
Learning something new always starts with people.
“My priority starts with me”. It has to otherwise everything else spiral out of control. Not in big ways but in small ways and they add up over time. It is a tide that rises its not a tsunami that hits you.
It starts by acknowledging that you have choice. And what you choose to do forms your vision.
The biggest obstacle is time.
The second biggest obstacle is habit. Making something thoughtless so it happens automatically. When you aren’t resilient you will go to the easiest parts that will help you get through. When you are resilient you do all your tools with style and get back to where you need to be going.
Sleep is a huge part of the work that he does. It is a foundational work.
Episode 44 – Hope Zvara
What is happening on the matt when you step onto it? What are you actually trying to cultivate? Ask yourself if you have a healthy relationship with your yoga matt.
There has to be a point when we are challenged as an individual to go beyond the physical. What does this pose mean to me? Where in my life am I experiencing these same thoughts and behaviours? Asana is like a mini incubator. How you behave on the matt is pretty much the same way that you are living life except that it is in a controlled environment. Form a bridge between your yoga matt and your life.
How to bring intention to the yoga matt. Hold an intention while you are in a pose. Open yourself to your higher power. Trust that you are going to be guided in the right way. What happens is we can find a morsel of peace and serenity. Be okay with not having all the answers right at that moment.
Three pillars – breath, body and belief.
Breath is the first thing to be given to us and the last thing in life to be taken away.
Inhale and exhale is its own mantra. “Hum” on the inhale and “sah” on the exhale. The more we tune into this we try and curb our mind away from all out thoughts. We remove ourselves from the situation temporarily and when we come back to it we come back with a fresh mindset.
You have an average of 24,000 breaths a day. How may of those breaths are you aware of?
First learn to breath and then learn asana. It is a natural progression.
Breathing is a nutrient. It helps to stoke our “agni” our digestive fire. It is absolutely free and it is often overlooked.
Most people are breathing with 18% of their lung capacity. If we can get that full breath, we are going to feel so much better.
The hope with meditation is that we create space between us and our thoughts. You get to watch your thoughts but you don’t get to go in and engage. The more we detach we become a lot less emotionally involved. We become the observer. This gives us more insight to make a positive choice.
She tries to see her whole life as a meditation. A practice of one pointedness. When you talk on the phone with someone – only talk on the phone with them. No radio, no TV, no checking Facebook. We have been led to believe that multi-tasking is great but really it only creates more anxiety. When you go for a walk try and do this without headphones. When you cook only cook. When you are with your kids only be with your kids. When you are listening to this podcast only listen to this podcast.
Day dreaming sparks creativity. Meditative practice then allows greater imagination and access to ideas. Sometimes mindfulness is the preliminary round to day dreaming. Or we day dream and we need more clarity on it so we sit in meditation.
Mindfulness is about getting rid of the clutter in our mind that doesn’t serve us.
Giving yourself permission to think big about yourself. And look back on your past and even though you messed up a lot but realise it all led you to this. Allow yourself time to daydream as well.
Through the soulful deep connection of just feeling raw with myself I found God through that. I find a connection to my higher power. I started experiencing these things on my yoga matt.
When I am on a yoga matt my body is a temple. I am good enough the way that I am. This idea that I am enough. There must really be something out there for me. These must be purpose and value for me. Prayer is when you talk to God; meditation is when you listen to God. You need both.
That is such an expression of my faith for me because then I go out and live that.
Episode 43 – Pradeepa Narayanaswamy
Is a fertility coach – her purpose is to coach men, women and couples going through fertility and help them make their journey suck less.
Went through her own journey and tried everything that was offered. They had every treatment and test but after the 8th failure she found the courage to say “let’s stop here.” She was struggling through mental, emotional, spiritual and physical pain. She lacked clarity, she didn’t know what she was doing, she was just going through the motions. She stopped thinking for herself. “What do we really want?” They decided to go down the adoption route. It took more than three years more to get over the fact of unexplained fertility.
She decided she was going to own fertility moving forward. It wasn’t going to own her anymore. But it took eight years of struggling to get there.
She struggled with jealously when her friends and family were throwing baby showers.
She used to wonder “why me?” Now reflecting back she is very grateful for her infertility experience even though it sucked for her at the time because now she knows her purpose in life. Now she can be that person who can really help people going through those struggles that she went to. She has dedicated her life to serve the infertility tribe.
This not something that you can sweep under the rug. You need to honour your emotions. And then work out how you are going to consciously move forward.
It was like she was stuck in quicksand and there was nothing to help her climb out, get up, and move forward in her journey. She wants to help other people out of their quicksand.
We discuss the effect that infertility can have on relationships. Pradeepa talks about having an invisible wall between her husband and herself during their journey. There was no national relationship between them. They lost that connection that they had. It was very robotic and process based. It became a routine. She puts a lot of emphasis to work with couples because your marriage should never end because of infertility. It is just a bump on your life’s journey with marriage.
She offers retreats where couples can come and rejuvenate their relationships. Honour each other. Why did we choose to be together? How do you want it to be moving forward? What is your goal together as a couple? What do you want to achieve? Your life doesn’t end with infertility.
Even if you end up having a child it does not mean your relationship struggles will go away. You can’t afford to sweep it under the rug because when it does come up it will come up like a volcano spewing fire and ashes.
If you cannot go deeper into yourself it is hard to walk forward on the right path. The key is willing to go deeper not only for your sake but for the sake of the people around you.
How you show up as a person matters the most.
Episode 42 – Mario Porreca
We know we have to regularly exercise to feel good and to get the benefits. But we very rarely take that active consistent approach with our mindset.
After a number of years working as a chef he gained a lot of weight. It was after his own weight loss journey that people started asking him to teach them how it did it. After about six months he realised he was making more money from coaching than he was from cooking. He then wondered what would happen if he became intentional about helping people.
95% got the result they wanted. But half of them would keep the weight off while the other half would lose the weight but they inevitably went back to their old ways. What was the difference between them and those that kept the result? He started doing a lot of research into this. What he found out was that it was all about mindset. The people who regressed back were only focused on the short term goal. Now what? When you are confused you will always revert to the strongest past conditioning. So then it becomes an identity problem.
When he found out that mindset was the key he began studying it from every angle that he could. He began to take a mindset first approach. If you can control your thoughts, and attach emotion to those thoughts, that will create a strong desire, which leads into having an intentional to take action, you will create a new belief and that will create a new result.
The GIO Method.
Outcome – it has to be clear and it has to be compelling. The more specific you can be the better. Your brain will start to notice the things that you want to create. He records this in his outcome journal.
Intention – to take action. Three different actions that are outcome focused with the goal to take him closer to his outcome. One thing that he can get done in the first hour. The second is within the next 24 hours. Two action items a day. The final intention is something that is a bit more long term, or a bigger project. If you do that every single day that builds massive momentum over time.
Gratitude – if you are in this state it is impossible to feel a negative emotion. Likes to meditate on three different things. One thing that he gets every day that he is grateful for. One thing that he has that he can give to other people. This creates fulfilment. The final thing is the I AM. We tend to have negative self-talk. I am powerful, I am unstoppable. What ever resonates with your psychology. Also be grateful for the things that are coming in your life in the future. This will help to attract these things.
How to build self care into your day. Look after your body – exercise. He reads the bible every morning. He meditates and relaxes. You have to schedule it in and it helps to do things first thing in the morning because it sets your day up. Mentality of “I take care of me so I can show up and do better.” What are the emotions that you value? What do you run towards and what do you run away from? Often we have conflicting values. If you are always self-sabotaging this will be why.
Using visualisation to overcome a lack of self-belief.
Whenever you feel unconfident it is because you are putting yourself first. If your intention is to serve then that will help because your focus will be on other people.
Episode 41 – Alani Bankhead
Personal definition of resilience – the ability to bounce back in difficult circumstances.
Ever since she was a little girl she always knew she was born to serve others and protect life. That desire led to a life in the United States military. Ended up as a special agent working for the Air Force. Started her career in Japan working a lot of drug cases. She started a country wide programme to prevent the sexual abuse of children via the Internet. From there she deployed to the Middle East where she worked for Special Forces to chase terrorists. From there she went to the headquarters in Quantico where she over saw counter intelligence. From there she went back to The Middle East doing counter intelligence / counter terrorism work. From there she became a senior bodyguard to a senior government official.
Very stressful, very frequent and long deployments, long days, went from 60 up to 100 hours per week. Always having to be mentally and physical alert.
Resilience has become more of a focus for the US military as the war has continued.
People used to tell them to get more sleep and rest but they used to laugh because the mission had certain demands that required sacrifice the sleep, the exercise the healthy diet. They just did the best they could with what they had.
Faith is very important to who she is – it is very central to her being. She would get automated devotional readings sent to her work inbox. Reading these gave her breathing room and the ability to re-centre. She also found a disused cupboard in the Pentagon where she could go for five minutes to meditate or use a resilience app on her phone.
As a team leader she had to make sure she set an example in terms of taking time to maintain her own resilience.
Virtual Hope Box App.
Yoga and meditation.
Worked for a Non Profit Organisation in preventing human trafficking and slavery.
Just launched a coaching business. Passionate about helping people to devise plans that work best for them so they can live their best most authentic life. When clients tell me they can’t get over some barrier I tell them “when have you ever met a 5 foot 3 midget bodyguard?” She ended up viewing her personal appearance as an asset not a weakness.
Personal tools – Virtual Hope Box app, You Tube yoga exercises, the bible
Episode 40 – Katie de Jong
Left her corporate career in 2011 when she was pregnant with her first child. Finished her coaching certification in 2014.
Clarity can emerge in layers over time. We start off with a seed of an idea. We begin with an idea and experiment with new things. We learn and discover about ourselves as we go. Being on a purposeful path is an evolution. Wants to help heart centres change makers. People who have a drive to leave the world in a better place than how they found it.
The core of her process is a very deep dive into helping the person get back to their true authentic self. When you tap into your true authentic self and what she calls “your zone of magic” then naturally you will start making money because you become like a magnet. Because you are living your truth you become a very affective person at what you do.
Your purpose is a very helpful decision maker for you. You can decide very quickly if an opportunity aligns with your inner compass or not.
She believes that everybody has gifts that can used to generate income.
There are certain expectations in our society about what success is.
What are the things you are brilliant at? What are the things you are really passionate about? What are the things that really break your heart? If there was one thing that you could change what would it be? What are the environments that will really bring out your spark and your energy? People often believe that your passion is for hobbies and that you can’t make good money out of your passion.
Kids that don’t get good grades are not stupid. You cannot quantify intelligence. IQ tests measure such a small percentage of a person’s skills. There are so many ways in which we can be fulfilled but it all comes down to authenticity and being seen a validated for who you are.
You don’t have to have a university education to be brilliant at what you do and makes lots of money. And that is a mindset shift that within society we have to make.
Katie shared a little about the process your takes her clients through. She takes them on a deep dive into discovering who they are when they are being their authentic self. True clarity emerges when you reconnect with who you are at your core. She uses three different personality tests. Then take a deep dive into strengths testing. What are the sort of roles that we tend to take on? What are you passionate about? What is that triggers an emotional response in you? That is a clue into what you are passionate about. People who struggle in life at a deep level feel called to help others to move through that problem. What is it that society would gladly pay you for? When all these things over lap that is your zone of genius.
We spend such a large amount of lives working that it just feels wrong to be spending so many hours doing something that doesn’t feel meaningful.
The hallmarks of having found your purpose: you have lots of energy, you feel abuzz with inspiration, your health improves. You also discover a sense of synchronicity and grace. Suddenly the right person appears, suddenly there is the right conversation; there is an ease and flow to it. It doesn’t mean that you don’t work hard. But those hours energise you rather than drain you. You are being pulled by something. It is normal to still have periods of self doubt or struggle.
We talk about the risk of overworking and the important of self-care.
The times when she has her biggest insights has been when she has taken a break or is having some down time. There is real benefit to taking it easy – we shouldn’t be always pushing.
You need to try and enjoy the journey. And allow that synchronicity and grace to come from being more relaxed and balanced. It is a tightrope we have to walk; balancing the self-care with drive.
We talk about the importance of community. Don’t allow yourself to get isolated. Collaboration is very important. You can not do it alone. You can find your tribe fairly easily now due to technology.
The more you can celebrate other people’s success then the more you are likely to draw success to yourself.
If you love learning then entrepreneurship is a way to stretch yourself and grow to the max.
Episode 39 – Nancy Siebel
It can feel like a struggle to be there with the blank page in front of you. Journaling – can be a useful way of exploring thoughts and feelings. Prompts can be useful to get the writing started. “I figure out what I think and feel when I see what I write.”
Expressive writing – developed by James Pennebaker. Is a productive way to explore something from our past that might still be with us in some way. Write in our own voices and with no regard to editing. Purposely shift perspectives – from 1st person to the 2nd person or even the 3rd person. The insights are powerful and immediate.
It is helpful to work this through with a group. It allows you to talk about what came up for you and what you learned. This can deepen the experience.
Affirmative writing – writing a letter to tell yourself you did the best you could at the time.
Transactional writing – in the form of a letter as if you were going to share it with someone. However in general you probably won’t be sending the letter.
Poetic writing is based on the skeleton of an existing poem. Opens up your mind in a different way and make new discoveries that way. Let yourself play with the form and just see what comes out.
Legacy writing – what you value, what means the most to you. When you get put back in touch with what matters most it makes you focus on it. This really promotes resilience.
Pick a writing schedule that works for you. It gives you something to look forward to but also something that you can maintain. Try and find uninterrupted time.
Some people begin their writing by deep breathing and visualization. Or lighting a candle or some incense. Some people begin with free writing and then move on to writing to a prompt.
We then talked about writing materials and experimenting with different forms.
Sometimes it is good to carry a notebook so you can write down ideas as they come to you throughout the day or so that you can make the most of any down time you may have.
Getting in touch with your inner encourager.
Episode 38 – Tracie Nichols
Thinking in terms of the whole person whenever she is coaching. Are they building in resilience practices? Are they evaluated their self-care? Are they working alongside their personal rhythm? Are the things they are doing in alignment with who they are spiritually and emotionally. What they are doing in sustainable from within and it aligns with what they believe in.
Spiralling leaves. When we are being in alignment with ourselves, doing good in the world, we create conditions that allow life to thrive. Referring business out to a women colleague or sharing resources or simply talking about the amazing work that is being done by other people within the community. Creating a thriving system. What if we don’t block the sun from anyone else and we can all do well? The communal energy can lift you when you are having a struggling moment.
Highly sensitive people – discovered by Dr Elaine Aron. 20% of the population (including all animals as well) have this trait. We have five senses and they receive information from the environment all the time. For 20% of the world that information comes in at a level of intensity that becomes physical impactful to feel. Certain things can be disruptive to your system. It is a unique way of experiencing the world. They tend to deeply process information. 70% are introverts. Tend to be quieter because they are processing things through. But they oftentimes come up with things that other people haven’t seen. It is evolutionary trait developed so that there are people who can be the antenna of the rest of the population. They can inform what is coming next. They can see future outcomes that may not be on other people’s radar. It can be overwhelming.
Be quite intentional about creating boundaries for yourself. Avoid spaces that are not conducive to your wellbeing. Pace your day at your own rhythm. In the morning she has more energy for task oriented things. In the afternoon she has energy for creative things. She schedules clients based on what kind of thinking they need and places them in times of day that make sense for her body system. Observing your own body rhythms you can then create a working structure for yourself that can eliminate many of the triggers to exhaustion. If you are in the situation in which you don’t have control over your working environment then the key is to find those micro breaks and to just put yourself in a position when you are shutting down all the stimulation to your nervous system.
Body wise is a phrase she came up with – the ability to be grounded in your body and then allowing all of the signals and the information that your body gives you to become part of the internal conversation they have about our choices and decisions. Being body wise relates to be embedded into your eco-system. It keeps her grounded in her she is.
Children are very body wise. They on their bellies rolling on the ground, they respond to the information that their body gives them. We get socialised out of that. Trauma can also snap you out of your body as suddenly your body becomes an unsafe place to be.
Three-part breathing is a great yoga practice that can help us get back into our bodies. Also Tai Chi, Yoga, Qi Gong helps. Working with a somatic therapist who addresses body and mind. Put your hand over your heart and sense your own heart beat. Because your own heart beat is a sound we begin to experience in the womb and it is a sound that tells us that we are alive. It is something simple that you can do in any moment. Give your body permission to move however it needs to. It can be any number of things. Just rolling with it as weird and uncomfortable as it might feel. In this culture we don’t move a lot. And we especially don’t move if it is unchoreographed. Unstructured movement outdoors, bare feet on the ground is even better.
Multi potentialled people, also known as renaissance souls, you have varied interests and you have the capacity to be successful in all those interests. It can make life fascinating but also complicated. They think relationally. Tend to be very innovative in their thinking.
An introduction to two authors – Margaret Wheatley and Terry Tempest Williams.
Personal tool for resilience – a very regular, committed and felt sense of a connection with the natural world.
Find a sense of belonging that is unshakeable.
Episode 37 – Michael Walker
Diagnosed with PTSD three years ago. Up until then he thought he was flying but it turns out he was hiding a lot of things.
He had a very violent childhood. Consequently, he was broken not long after being born. He struggled with the rest of his life with panic attacks and hyper vigilance. Under stress he would become vocal, under pressure he would become violent.
Men don’t talk or show emotion in this country unless we are cheering for the All Blacks. The defence force was a good outlet for him because he got to lace up his shoes and use up some of that negative energy.
There is a culture in our country where we just don’t talk about the stuff that makes us tick and it is very dangerous. It nearly cost me my life three years ago.
He was in the navy from 1990 – 2003. Resilience wasn’t talked about. There was some psychological assistance provided in certain circumstances but no one took it up. Instead they would add a few kilometres to their run and then drink.
He was in denial for many years. Looking back now I realised he was having panic attacks. He was very good at masking things and telling the stories that he thought people wanted to hear.
He threw himself at things where he would be deemed worthy. He was looking for a sense of completeness. And he found that in the defence force. He thrived in that environment. But he still had issues that he needed to deal with. You can only run for so long and then it is like a jack in the box.
He kept chasing those operational jobs after leaving the defence force.
His default setting is to work harder, run further and be the manly man. So there was pressure from the job and he got to a point where he tried to end his life.
He felt that he had failed as a man in eyes. But little did he know that the journey had only just begun.
The people he met in the mental health system were amazing people. When he entered the system he had an expectation like he had broken his arm – he thought they could fix him quickly. They gave him an understanding of what was going on. The medication took him back to a place where he wasn’t suicidal but he was flat line. Once he got to a point of understanding he got to a point of acceptance. And then he paid for extra help.
His wife was an amazing support. Without his wife by his side he wouldn’t have made it. She created a place for him where it was okay to cry, and be sad, and to be angry. She didn’t push him but she was always there for him. He also made some amazing friendships with people.
“Without disrespecting the mental health professionals; they could tell you the square root of a can of baked beans just by looking at it, they are amazingly intelligence. But I am basic man, I just want to know how to open that can and sustain myself.”
He formed relationships with people who had been down the same path as him. It is always easier when you have people around you, supporting you.
He is a better man now because of his experience. And it has showed him how many people love him. And a lot of that support has come from men. Because behind closed doors men will talk.
He and his wife were invited to open a conference to speak to people from the defence force. And that is when he got out of the “mental health cupboard”. He admitted that he was an extremely vulnerable man. But he was also blessed in that he has come back and survived and now is able to go on and help others. He got to where he got to because he refused to have meaningful conversations. So now he is happy to talk about his journey.
There is a culture in this country where we just don’t talk and to show any emotion is weakness.
We have to create environments where you can talk and where you can share. You have to have communicators who talk openly about their feelings. They need an environment where they feel safe. We need to communicate with other men that it is not weak to talk.
We talk about the need for families to receive help from the mental health system to help them deal with their own suffering.
We need to help defence force personnel as they transition into civilian life carrying with them the baggage of some of things they have experienced.
David Benfell set up The Soldiers, Sailors and Airmens Association of New Zealand to provide wrap around services for ex service men and women. Through outdoor activities they get veterans back together and replicate the comraderies and team spirit that is a big part of the defence force.
We have a duty of care to help those who have fought for the freedoms that we often take for granted.
Michael talks about how he chose to talk to his managers and his colleagues about his mental health issues. Everyone was very accepting and sharing of their own stories. It is important to communicate honestly when you feel safe to do so.
Episode 36 – Sarah Carpenter
The goal should not be getting rid of anxiety because it only makes us more anxious.
The goal is not to get rid of it but to stop giving it power. “Just because you’re on my team doesn’t mean you get to get to be my boss.”
Anxiety doesn’t control our thoughts. It is the reverse. Our anxiety comes from our thoughts, from our belief system, how we are viewing and seeing the world. This is often a subconscious process. When we notice anxiety, we can sit down and take a look at the thoughts that are causing the anxiety. Then we can start to reassess these thoughts.
Become the three-year-old in your brain and keep asking “why”. Get curious. Don’t judge your thoughts or your anxiety.
We talk about how being a highly sensitive person and being very aware can contribute to the anxiety because we notice the people around us and their reactions. We can use these qualities for good as well. We can be more empathetic.
Anxiety is also a great teacher because it forces us to look more deeply at things. And it also allows us to be more deeply engaged with others.
When we view ourselves as broken and damaged then that is how other people see us as well because that is the type of energy we portray.
We need our community and our group for survival so we have that primitive fear in our minds of being authentic and vulnerable.
Listening to your inner wisdom is hard because of all the other chatter on top of it. Sometimes the messages don’t seem to make sense. But when we can be true to that voice then no matter what happens we live without regret.
The visual tool of holding your hand in a tight fist and it hurts. Then you take your other hand and crush that fist until it is extra painful. If you try to release your fist you can’t because your other hand is clamped on top. This represents all the negative feelings we have about our negative feelings. All the resistance we feel towards it. If we can take the hiding, the shame and resistance away then you have the ability to eventually open up your fist and let it go.
When we are taking care of ourselves our capacity to give to others is so much greater.
Also look to see how other people’s energy is affecting you and learn to protect yourself from that.
Personal tools – be willing to feel the feelings and not hide from them. Look as every situation as a classroom, as a learning. In every circumstance there is always some beauty to be found if we are looking for it.
Episode 35 – Nancy Smith
Currently living in Bolivia as she runs her online business and stationery supply website.
Was previously a journalist for a large New Zealand news site – she found it mentally a struggle to keep up and to keep on top of everything as well as keep on top of her own life. Bullet journaling puts everything together to look at your life as a whole.
We talked about the excitement of starting a new journal. But remember it for you so you can do what you like. Some days are busy and messy and because no one is perfect your journal shouldn’t be perfect either.
You need to start your journal with a place for your future log or your future spread. You can have a space for every month of the year for recording big events that are coming up. Beyond that it becomes very personal to you. You might want a day per page or a week per page. You need to understand how you like to plan and how your life is structured.
Leave some clean space to allow an area where you can write down your thoughts, note or ideas. Allow space for crafting – drawing, stickers etc.
Important to also allow pages for “brain dumps” when you feel that life is getting hectic and crazy.
You can have blank pages, squares, lines or dots. Dots are popular because they allow a great deal of creativity but also can help you write in a straight line if that is important to you.
An ideal size is A5 which allows enough space but is small enough to carry around with you. Again the size of your journal depends on your personal preference and your lifestyle.
We talk about pens, stickers and patterned tapes.
Recommend a minimum of 80 gsm weight paper. Use 100 gsm paper to avoid ink bleeding through to the next page or when you can see the writing through the other side of the page. This allows you to use water based inks. An art journal has even thicker paper which will allow you to use any sort of ink that you like.
Experiment with different pens. Staedtler Fine Liners are popular. Brush pens are now quite popular – a form of calligraphy. Popular in this range is the Tombow Dual Tip. You can blend the inks to make other colours but they come in about 92 different colours. You can also use Crayola Super Tips.
Washi tape can become addictive. Patterned tape that originated in Japan. That and stickers are a great way decorate your pages particularly if you are not particularly artistically inclined.
Personal resilience tools – journaling (of course!), meditation, exercise, yoga, hydration. Because these activities are prioritised in her journal she is more likely to do them.
Episode 34 – Jo Casey
Feminine conditioning – unspoken rules for what it means to be a good woman. Also applies to male conditioning. These can limit us.
What does it mean to be a human in the world? What if you didn’t have to stick to all these invisible rules?
The Impostor Complex – affects women more than men. Have to be perfect – 100% prepared.
We talk about male and female conditioning and how it related to the USA presidential election between Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump.
The importance of being authentic in business but how this can make us feel vulnerable.
You don’t want to be everything for everyone. You also don’t want to work with all types of clients. There is a magical alchemy when the right people are working together.
The more you try to appeal to everybody the less you appeal to anybody because you become very bland.
What is the why behind what you are doing? Let your values shine. Let your personality shine. This is the only way to attract the right people.
Conversational marketing. Marketing in a way that feels human. So many of us are crying out for more connection. The online world is just an extension of the real world.
Give yourself a chance to build up relationships.
Personal tools – walking in nature. Moving meditation. Connect with trees. Mindfulness practice. Better boundaries around work. Great support network. Finding a sense of purpose.
Episode 33 – Melanie Childers
Both an activist and also helps other activists and women running for office.
Got cancer at the age of 34. That began her activist career. Started being very vocal and outspoken about how cancer will change your life. Started a breast cancer podcast and started an online breast cancer magazine.
Facing your own mortality, you realise all these other little things don’t matter very much. If you have something you need to say you need to say it. There is no time to sit in the corner being sad or afraid.
Cancer is like a bomb going off in your life. When the dust settles everything becomes very clear.
Coming to an understanding of the way we talk to ourselves and how we let that hold us back and how we can shift out of that so we are taking action anyway is so important.
Your thoughts are not always what is true. She can decide how you want to feel.
Courage journal – write down every time you’ve been courageous, everything you’re good at, every time you’ve done well.
How to create your confidence manifesto.
Our brain wants to focus on the achievement. But what matters if that you did it and that you got up and tried anyway.
It takes one election to change everything so every vote matters. You have to speak up about the things you care about. You need to be a part of change for the better.
We are being forced to look at the way we hurt each other even if we didn’t mean it.
Resilience tools – deep breaths to centre and ground herself. Yoga. Cycling. Feel her feelings and sit with them and don’t attach any thoughts to them. When we resist it hangs around. When we acknowledge it we can often let it go quickly. Always try to take small action steps to move forward when she is feeling overwhelmed.
Episode 32 – Jenny Eden
Body love is a multifaceted problem. It not just that we have these vessels that we are ambivalent about. We need to change the conversation. Not that we have looove our bodies but more like understanding, respecting, listening to, and appreciating.
When someone loves their body they are grounded, they have a warm smile, they are embodied.
“Let’s work together and do the best possible things we can do in life.”
We begin with agreeing to be fully present in our body rather than numbing out. Where are you experiencing stress, or pleasure? Are you experiencing your senses? When you can reframe your thoughts, and what your body if for, then you can step into body reverence. From that place of worthiness and embodiment we can then make choices that support this vessel that we have; not for anyone else but for ourselves.
The problem is the societal belief that there is only one type of beauty.
As parents we can only lay down foundations of self-love. But we have to be vigilant about the messages that are coming in from society.
Girls and women have been taught that our purpose is to be pleasing to the eye. If we drop all that stuff there is so much more we can do in our lives. We can love deeper, we can contribute more.
We want love, sense of belonging, included, protected and safe. Unfortunately we think we will get these things if we only conform to societies idea of beauty because that is the message we are sold.
Jenny curate’s her Facebook feed with body positive people, with diverse bodies, so she knows about the diversity that exists in the world. Everybody looks different and that it how it should be. Surround yourself with people are not judgemental and who support your body philosophy. Find your tribe of people who resonate with your message.
Mindful eating is the idea of not just slowing down while eating but be fully present to the experience of eating. Bringing a level of awareness that is not typically there. No multi-tasking while eating – choose eating as the activity. You get to listen to how your body is feeling on a deeper level. You also get to appreciate how the food got to our plate and all those who were involved in the production.
There is no morality in food. But different foods affect our bodies in different ways. We need to learn to trust and listen to our bodies in a very deep level. Don’t give your power over to other people to tell you what to do or not do. How does your body respond to food?
We have all the answers that we need – we just need to run the experiment and listen and trust.
Once you have the foundation of worthiness then from that place you make decisions that bolster that.
The importance of eating for pleasure and with awareness. Pleasure has to be part of the equation in order for your body to get the message that it has had enough.
Documentary – Embrace
We talk about how men are now being exposed to the same message and pressures.
If you don’t task risks and explore your edges and explore your fears then you stay stagnant. All the growth happens when you get uncomfortable.
The movie – Unbroken. That is the epitome of resilience.
Episode 31 – Bill Monroe
The stroke helped him develop a focus on both his recovery but also what he wants to do with his life. Changes can occur in people’s personality and emotional affect due to physiological changes. Some people struggle with these changes.
We are all running out of time. We don’t know how much time is left but if we have stuff that we want to get done we’ve gotta get it done.
He had a lot of support from friends and family. Also got a lot of support from friends via social media. Also provided entertainment and information. People shared their own stories about having strokes.
Bill’s stroke was most likely caused by extended high blood pressure.
Increasing numbers of strokes among young people.
80% of strokes are preventable.
Major contributors to stroke – high blood pressures, diabetes, smoking, sleep apnoea.
Preventatives – eat better; consume less salt, eat more fruits and vegetables, get exercise, stop smoking, drinking in moderation. Live a healthy lifestyle, do things in moderation – the key to preventing most strokes. Also important to learn how to manage stress. Look at what you can control but let go what you can’t control.
It is important to make sure that you have adequate insurance cover including loss of income insurance. Also set up automatic bill payments so you don’t have to worry about your finances.
Yet is Bill’s favourite word in the language. The connections in his body aren’t there yet and he continues to rewire his brain. He always says I can’t do that … yet. Because the word yet acknowledged the reality of today but make plans to make it different tomorrow. If he tells him brain this is something he cannot do then the brain doesn’t worry about getting it done. Also relates to motorcycle training where they taught him not to look at the obstacle ahead of you or you will hit it. Look at the path around it instead. Your brain will draw you to the things that you are focused on.
Launched his Stroke podcast because he wanted to bring people resources as well as teach people how to peel a banana with one hand. He wants to share stories and connect people. Also an opportunity for people to share their stories; a chance to be heard and acknowledged.
Signs of stroke – FAST. Face – is their face starting to droop? Arms – can they lift both their arms? Speech – slurred speech or speaking nonsense. Time – time is of the essence. Call the ambulance immediately. If you’re not sure if it is a stroke or not call anyway and let the medical professionals make that decision. In the first 6 – 24 hours there are medical and surgical interventions can help. Time lost is brain lost. Treatment often begins in the ambulance.
Tool for resilience – focusing on goals and breaking them down into smaller steps so he can start acting on his goals today. Don’t get best – get better. There can only be one best in any particular thing. Also somebody else has to be worse than you. Instead focus on getting a little bit better every day.
Episode 30 – Melody Spencer
Digital marketing and Facebook ad strategist.
Helps female entrepreneurs to get across their messaging and connect with their clients.
Was really scary when she first went freelance 5 ½ years later. She is now making more money than she ever did and is loving what she does.
The future of work is moving online and freelance.
Now a huge community of women who are making it work, living the life they always wanted to live without the contraints of an office job.
Online marketing changes from day to day.
The biggest way to reach new people is live video.
Rather than get caught up in promotion remember that your job is to help people and you need to keep that in mind.
Need to be consistent about connecting with people at a heart centred level. Listen to their stories and meet them where they are at.
How to decide whether to learn about digital marketing yourself or when to hire someone to outsource your marketing.
The importance of leaving the house when you work from home.
To avoid distraction, you can break your day into chunks. Make sure you schedule breaks.
Consider taking the notifications off your phone.
The benefits of online calendars / booking systems.
How much to spend on your business at the beginning.
The benefits of business coaching.
Personal tools – mind set work. Morning routine – journaling, affirmations, meditation. Get back in alignment and flow for the day. EFT Tapping. Turn negative statements into positive statements.
Journaling prompt groups.
Episode 29 – Colton Geschwandtner
Personal definition of resilience – get back up and see that there is always a positive even when everything around you is negative. It is not what knocks you down but how you respond to it is what resilience is.
Did not have a stable home life. His parents weren’t in great situations themselves. His Mum was a high school drop out. His Dad was a trucker so he wasn’t always around. He wasn’t good at making child support payments. Constant arguments.
His step father didn’t know how to raise children. He was very demanding and hard on him. He taught him how to work hard but when they lived together he couldn’t stand it. He tried to find solace with his Dad but he was never really around.
Around this time he started to get really depressed. His father remarried and dropped out of his life for the next six years.
He completely stopped doing all school work entirely. He had this expectation that nobody really expected anything of him. He felt that no body enjoyed his presence. He thought he would die by the time he was 25.
Music, video games and some very solid friends got him through this difficult period.
He was bullied at school and the subject to untrue rumours.
Became an alcoholic.
His grandfather on his Mum’s side drank himself to death before the age of 65. Partied really hard and tried a few different drugs. He did a lot of stupid things. Drank himself into the hospital in three different occasions. He never wanted to experience that again so he decided to try and stop that.
His only claim to any popularity in grade school was that he could pay the guitar. It was the one thing they loved about him. In high school he joined bands that helped him get through tough times.
After he had his accident he decided he wanted to go on tour with his band. He decided to chase his dreams rather than to keep living in a hole.
Once he developed PTSD he only saw a counsellor three times.
Nine months later he admitted that he wasn’t doing very well. His relationship broke down just as they were about to move in together.
He was put on antidepressants but he had a bad reaction to them. His doctor told him he had to man up and power through it. He changed his doctor and got referred to another counsellor.
She started making the different for him. Anxieties from his childhood had been amplified by the accident. He was 25 at this time when he realised he had been depressed for the last 12 years and had never actually dealt with it.
Developed coping mechanisms. He learned to meditate. He learned to focus in what he could do to solve his problems rather than on the things he could not control.
Meditation and reading are two tools that he uses to maintain his resilience.
He begins his meditation by analyses he day and his behaviours. Then he practices mindfulness and concentrates on his breathing.
He started to use his dog as a way to continue building himself and his positivity. He has to get up and out of bed to meet his dog’s needs. He has become his best friend. He is his rock.
Also relies in the support of his friends.
Talks about his aims for starting his podcast Desert Tiger.
Talks about the episode in which he talked about mental health. He had a very positive response.
Episode 28 – Sam O’Sullivan
Two paths that led him to where he is now. The personal path – struggling with his own problems with anxiety. He was bullied a lot in high school and developed social anxiety and panic attacks. He discovered a huge range to tools through his studies in psychology. He wanted to go out there and give those tools to others. He was a psychologist working in an inpatient mental health unit where he was working with mostly men. The women that were there were the victims of men – usually sexually. It became apparent that there was something social going on with men in New Zealand. He worked in private practice and worked with a lot of men. They often didn’t want to talk about their feelings in order to process their trauma. He didn’t choose to work with men but it kind of chose him.
He felt very limited working in the health system so went out on his own.
Men often want to appear tough – they are also socially taught to. They don’t want to show fear or sadness. They are okay showing anger and happiness but not much else. They try and hide the softer person underneath. Or they drink alcohol and use drugs to avoid experiencing their emotions.
The idea behind Tough Talk is it is tough to talk so talking makes you tough.
Also the idea that being successful as a man is defined by society. If a relationship breaks down or they lose a job they can feel like they have failed.
There are also themes that apply for everyone. A sense of place in community and a sense of purpose within that community. Also getting out into nature is important for feeling better – either alone or in a group.
People talk about mindfulness in their own way – swimming, surfing, cutting wood. Accept what is happening – surfing the waves of life.
Sometimes women struggle when their male partner starts to show their own vulnerability. They need to find their strength in themselves – to step into their own power. We don’t need the man in our life to be our rock – we become our own rock.
We talk about the need for males and females to have separate spaces to talk about issues but also we need to come back together and share our perspectives.
We also talk about how it can be awkward for men to take up yoga where they might be the only man in the room.
Changes amongst younger people who are now more aware of tools such as mindfulness. There are also changes in understand around gender roles.
The affect on males of having fathers who didn’t talk deeply to them or show emotion.
We discuss the very high youth suicide rate in New Zealand and possible causes for this.
We talk about fixed mindset and distraction.
We discuss whether resilience in innate or not and conclude that although the research is not definitive the good news is that we can all build our resilience.
Sam talks about what’s coming up with Season 2 of Tough Talk.
Episode 27 – Di Riddell
It was the death of her husband 15 years ago that sent her back to face her past. She had a violent alcoholic father. She had no self-esteem, no self-confidence or self-worth. At the age of 15 she was the victim of a pack rape. A pregnancy and adoption came out of that. She was told she was a disgrace and that she should go nursing and get out of societies way. So she did. She did eventually marry and ha 31 amazing years together.
In dealing with the grief at the death of husband it brought up her past. She burned out 12 months later.
She joined Al-Anon which is for the family and friends on alcoholics. It is an amazing self-development tool. Learned to take responsibility for herself. Started journaling. As a member of Toast Masters she was used to speaking but as she started telling her story it developed to the point where she became an “accidental author.” Original book in 2006 was her story and the second book which has just be released tells her story and the stories of other women and men.
Abuse is a subject that well and truly needs airing and discussing. She is hoping that her book will give hope and inspiration to someone who may be going through some type of life challenge. That is her absolute wish.
Moving beyond victimhood. That is an ongoing journey. It is not a one-off choice.
Her doctor asked her “don’t you matter? Because you’re not acting like it.”
Developed strategies with the help of a psychologist that helped her to move forward.
Opened the doors to something deeper and she has never shied away from it. There was an amazing amount of help which she grabbed with both hands.
Journaling allows you to explore your feelings, where you are at, your relationships and the things you can do.
Forgiveness is a choice not a feeling. It is a repeated action. There are many layers of forgiveness.
“I don’t know what went on my father’s young life to want to inflict some hurt on his family. It must have been very rough. We can only deal with life with the skills that we have at the time. As we know better we can do better.”
Forgiveness is not about condoning with what they did. But it is about releasing yourself so you can find peace and move on with your life.
EFT Tapping – used this technique to release negative emotions. Link available on Inside Knowledge Facebook Page and Group – and website.
When it comes to anger be kind to yourself. “That is the old me speaking. The new me is making new decisions”
“They took one night of my life but I gave them the next 43 years.”
When you are prepared to let go that starts that freedom process – the softening of your heart so that you can react differently. When you are carrying anger and unforgiveness in you, it weights you down. When you release it you start to feel and express light, love and laughter.
“The sharing of vulnerable moments develops trust which is the cement of all relationship building.” Pat Armitage.
Confidence is a by product of stepping out and doing. It is not about saying “I am the greatest.” Talking about inner quiet confidence which is projected outward.
Confidence is fluid. It ebbs and flows throughout your life.
The Confidence Tree – if you have a hiccup you are only slipping down a branch or two. You are not at the base of the tree. Now you have to use your skills to climb back to the top of the tree.
The loss of identity that can occur as you grow older. The death of a partner or the break down of your relationship – lose identity as a wife or husband. Loss of parents – lose identity as a daughter or a son. Retirement – loss of identity of your job title. Who am I now?
All of the bad things happened to “Diana”. After I was married and joined Toastmasters I was “Diane”. Now I am the somewhat cheeky “Di”.
The difference between the sense of identity that you choose and the identities that are put on us from outside.
Forgiveness and gratitude go hand in hand. Gratitude journal – five good things. “What have I got to be grateful for – a roof over my head, a motor car to get me around, food in the cupboard.” Then began to widen out and began to see things that her mind had been closed to before. It puts your mind in a restful happy place before you go to sleep which is very effective.
Dual action of releasing the negative emotions and filling yourself up with the positive emotions.
Her book has hit number 1 on Amazon Australia for self help books. That only happened because she was willing to put herself out there. There is always someone ready to give you a hand if you are willing to have a go. We need strategies to help us to cope with the challenges that will always keep coming up.
Episode 26 – Steph McKee
Used to be a hard-core sportsperson. Worked late at night. Did triathlons. Until she broke herself – burnt out and got adrenal fatigue. Also put on weight. Even though she increased her exercise and ate less and kept gaining weight. So she started researching the issue.
When you are in a state of stress the body chooses to store reserves.
Signs of that our body is under stress – sleep disturbance, heart palpitations, regular illness, not as resilience as you used to be.
Sleep – diet can impact. If you under eat carbohydrates your blood sugar might be too low to get to sleep. If you eat too many carbs before sleep your blood sugar will spike and your insulin will spike and you are likely to wake early. Try to get to bed 9.30 – 10 pm rather than later. Deep belly breaths can help to calm the system. Get off your screens and devices a couple of hours before hand.
Certain diets all work for different people because of differences in metabolic states. Might slowly reduce carbohydrate content. Learn to read what your body is saying and don’t make too many changes to quickly. She doesn’t encourage sudden weight loss as it is a big stress on the body. Don’t aim for more than 500 grams per week. Even better ignore the scales and focus on your measurements instead. How you feel in your skin is more important.
Running might not always be the best exercise to start with. Start with gentle walking first. Restorative practice can help a lot with weight loss.
Talked about optimal exertion during exercise and if it isn’t making you feel good then try something else. Try biking instead of running.
Think of exercising more gently but for longer. Think of a goal for a year. Most people want to achieve their goal in 6 weeks but often the weight comes on again.
Some people work well with goal setting.
The average age for women to go into perimenopause is 42. We need to adjust our diet and exercise to allow for hormonal changes.
It is never too late to start an exercise programme.
Movement is important at any age but the older your get the more important it becomes.
We discuss whether you can start a programme on your own perhaps using the Internet or whether it would be better to get a coach. Pick your coach carefully. By the time her clients are finished with her they don’t need her again because they are educated along the way.
Talk about exercising for different body types.
Personal tools for resilience – sleep, nutrition. Yoga or breath. Yoga with Adriane on You Tube.
The value of exercising in nature.
Episode 25 – Kathy Oppegard
Episode 24 – Lisa Tamati
If you have an identity as something you are more likely to do it. It is more than just will power. Will power will eventually run out on you. But when it is a part of who you are that is where you will get the momentum to build the habit.
All those limiting beliefs disappear – “this is the new me, I am an athlete, and this is who I am”. Then you delve deep then into the sport that you have chosen. Then you start to take on that identity.
The next phase is understanding your why. Look deep into your motivations.
The importance of goal setting. Set a motivational stick in the sand. The brain is a goal orientated mechanism. It should also have a deadline for achievement.
Then you need to develop the habit by regularly getting out there.
Within three months you will become a fully formed runner.
When you start to see changes in your own body that increases your motivation. Becomes self-propelling.
Usually the first few weeks go great. Then comes the crash because often you’ve gone out too hard and fast. Injuries will come up because you haven’t done the mobility or the strength work. This curve of ups and downs is going to happen. Don’t measure yourself. New runners expect they are going to get better and better every day but that is not the human body. There are little plateaus that come along and blow your confidence. The body has certain rhythms.
Be patient with yourself. Trust the process. Don’t measure yourself, go out regularly and just do it.
She doesn’t let her athletes measure themselves in the first 16 weeks just so they can establish a routine. Because that is what is important.
When you start an exercise programme when you haven’t been moving for 20 years you are putting a load on all these muscles that aren’t used to it. You haven’t got the stability. All these things need to be strengthened alongside them to be functionally fit.
Lisa talks about the lowest period of her life when her boyfriend at the time left her and their other companions while they were making an illegal crossing on the Libyan desert. They had no support, heavy packs and only 2 L of water a day to survive on. After surviving that experience it was running that gave her her life back.
She grew up in a family where physical toughness was what was valued.
You learned a lot of skills through ultra-marathon running that could be applied in other real world situations.
Lisa details her mother’s recovery from an aneurysm – which will be included in her up-coming book.
Humans do not succeed when they are comfortable. The body and the mind are capable of so much more than we believe they are. We need goals and challenges right throughout life.
Episode 23 – Amy Lyle
Personal definition of resilience – Going through a lot of failures and choosing to get up one more day; keep moving forward.
Amy thinks that things are harder for her but that is okay. She looks at other people and it seems so easy. She doesn’t see that in herself; she sees a lot of struggles. She thinks she gets in her own way a lot.
Was a salesperson for 20 years and everything was organised on a computer. It was very regimented and clear what you had to do next. She is just a little scatter brained sometimes.
The journey of the book demonstrates resilience. She was told by an entertainment attorney that she was referred to. “I won’t work with you. You are nobody, you don’t have any money and you don’t know anyone. You can’t just walk into Hollywood; you have to get on the map. He told her to write a book and told her to write what you know. She immediately thought “I have had a lot of failures.” She started writing the book that day.
Her favourite comedians are those that have survived a lot. Their stories are stories of survival. You are either going to go nuts or make light of it.
She can turn a failure into a funny story immediately.
Talking about her favourite books – Rules of Civility and Let’s Pretend It Never Happened.
Very strict old school parenting. Children were to be seen and not heard.
Humour doesn’t really run in the family but people within it have developed a sense of humour from having hard lives.
Her friends lift each other up and can also laugh about the funny fails that happen in their lives. Those female relationships are really critical.
She is definitely an extrovert. She’d rather be in a crow of 1,000 people rather than 10. She does like her alone time too.
We discuss politics, gun violence and the gap between rich and poor. We also talk about the importance of helping others even when we become wildly successful and famous.
Personal tool – a vast collection of funny movies and books.
Episode 22 – Jessica Zonneveld
Growth mindset – Carol S Dweck, coined the term growth mindset along with fixed mindset. We have both of them. We all have moments when we get stuck. A growth mindset is a mindset aimed at growth – it is getting beyond the “I can’t do this” “I’m not a math student”. We all have the ability to go beyond where we are now, we can all improve. Our brain is like a muscle.
Adults often have beliefs that they haven’t challenged themselves on and they don’t know where they have come from.
You can stretch yourself a little bit outside your comfort zone but don’t go too far or else you won’t be in the right place for learning. Take small steps. Build on the skills you already have and go from there.
We are all born to be resilient. Resilience is about bouncing back from life’s challenges.
Limiting beliefs can stop us from being resilient.
Jessica is drawn to work with children because children needs allies. It takes a village to raise a child. She wanted to help them learn but also with their confidence and personal growth. In her own childhood she could have done with a coach herself. She didn’t have the most optimum conditions.
Talked about the difference between psychology and life coaching.
How her teaching has helped her in her life coaching. Understands developmental stages. Also worked a lot with parents and can incorporate that into her coaching.
Talked about Third Culture Kids; children brought up in a country outside of their birth country or their culture. They draw a lot from relationships rather than a particular place.
Discussed whether there is more anxiety amongst children now.
How to raise children in a village. When it is appropriate to help teach a child who is not your own.
Talk about how children are raised in Holland. They are some of the happiest children in the world. They have quite free-range lifestyles. They are encouraged to have an opinion. They know who they are.
Personal tool – journaling. Getting stuff out of your head. Allows you to process things better.
Bounce back principles – bad times don’t last, things always get better, stay optimistic. Everybody experiences sadness, hurt, failure and rejection sometimes, it is a normal part of life, try not to personalise it, accept the things you cannot change but work with the things that you can.
Episode 21 – Jeffrey Davis
Wanted a life of meaning. He had certain views of what being in business in Texas in the 1980s would be like – and he didn’t want to be a part of that. After years of spending his days as a writer, teaching, editing, freelancing. Wrote a book about the intersection between yoga and the creative process.
Realised he needed to get serious about business. If he was going to get serious about business he wanted to do it his way.
Had to reassess conventional ideas about business. As a writer he is very sensitive as to the way words resonate with people or not.
Goal setting doesn’t in and of itself motivate people. Find your own internal motivation. Innately motivated by things that are meaningful to us. Many of us are driven by mastery by improving our craft.
Also drawn by relationship and connection.
Need to learn self-mastery habits to help us move forward both emotionally and creatively.
The difference between running with the pack or being a lone wolf. Humbling recognising there is no way you can maintain a business by yourself. Do it together beats to it yourself. The DIY lie is promoted a lot – you can do everything yourself because of technology and you should. This is very burdensome. We need to learn to say no to some things and delegate.
When you become a freelancer and start to work from home you dream of freedom but you often discover loneliness and isolation which can lead to depression.
Schedules deep dive retreats a year in advance – 3-4 days a month. Resilience is deep restoration, restfulness, openness, providing emotional punctuation.
3 or 4 days can be intimating for people at first. Start with a 4 hour in house creative retreat. More information about this can be found in this article. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/tracking-wonder/201011/in-house-retreat-can-refresh-the-creative-mind
Develop some wonder. Retreats allow you to become more expansive or focus to stay in the space of one project. You learn a lot about yourself during the process too.
How do you bring wonder into the workplace so people don’t burn out? One is to pause after 90 minutes of work and step outside for five minutes. Small interventions make really big measurable differences.
Personal tools for resilience – yoga practice and breathing techniques. Takes about 15 minutes. Plus a short meditation practice. Wonder walks – primes his mind with a problem and walks for a few minutes to let it incubate in the back of his mind. Also gives measurable benefits of being in nature. Diet – what foods affect him in what ways.
We think of resilience in terms of mindset but we are talking about stamina, the reserve of our mind to handle any sort of challenge. You need to be able to handle the inevitable challenges of growing a business. Self-awareness and self-regulation.
What is the state of body and mind that is going to help me reach my goals?
Episode 20 – Rochelle Sanchez
Personal definition of resilience – stand up for what you really want, and don’t give up on yourself, because what you really want is important.
Held back by shyness for a long time. As a child she thought she was just the shy girl. Which is fine but the real struggle for her was that while she was quiet she was very unhappy. Not being able to make those connections with those people. Listening to conversations and not knowing how to speak her mind; over thinking it, and assuming no one would care.
It following her and she didn’t nip in the bud until college when she talked to a counsellor about it.
She started in the self-help section in the book stores. How to make friends. There were a lot of different experiments that she did with herself. Even though she was shy, other people were quite talkative, and she could use it to her advantage. She could start the conversation and the other person would keep talking. Turns into a very comfortable conversation rather than what she assumed; which as judgemental and awkward.
There are days when she doesn’t want to talk but the different is she doesn’t beat herself up about it. It is perfectly okay being okay with being the quiet person, and appreciate that she is choosing to socialise that way.
Preparing for an activity that requires a lot of socialising means a lot of checking in and a lot of planning ahead as well. Making sure she can get away and take breaks from the talking.
Strengths of this character. It is easier to recharge because she can recharge on her own. She is not depending on other people or external forces.
She doesn’t embarrass herself as much as other people do because she is very thoughtful before she says something.
Quiet in the 80s and 90s is not the same as quiet now. People have a better understanding of it. People are also more aware of social anxiety. There is a lot of honouring differences in general to the point that people are claiming to be introverts when they are not actually introverts.
It is nice for her to be an introvert but it is nice to be over the shyness and not be held back by it anymore.
Rochelle talks about the importance of her faith and prayer in her daily life.
The important thing to remember is we do have meaning, we have a purpose, you are meant to be happy.
These days your practice is your own. You can take what you want.
Works mainly for online coaches who are very passionate about what they do and the kind of impact that they want to make in helping people change their lives.
Rochelle talks about different types of coaches and how to choose a coach for yourself.
Personal tools – prayer and journaling.
Episode 19 – Sunni Von Mutius
Personal definition of resilience – calls it anti-survival mode. Proactively intentionally designing your world and that comes from a desire to not bounce from one thing to another.
Movie – The Waking Life
Home schooled. Started school early and finished early. Leap frogged her way through a corporate career. She made good financial choices and was able to retire at 32 but soon became bored and began other projects as well as travelling and living as a nomad.
There is always an adventure with Sunni.
Home schooling was wonderful for Sunni – her Mum was born for it. Learned through play a lot. She taught them to be ever curious. She put us in classroom environments where they had social circles. Played with other home-schooled kids.
Being retired means her long-term future is taken care of. She still has to take care of the life she wants today. She had worked for a long time, she had a good amount of savings and she thought she was going to go to the beach every day, binge watch things she’d never been able to watch before. Three weeks in she was climbing up the walls.
The first thing she did was to start a strategy business. Apply the skills she had learned with small businesses. She had a lot of contacts in business all over the world and she decided she wanted to meet those people and rekindle those connections. She didn’t go home much at all so started living a nomadic lifestyle. Put all of her belongings in storage and made it official. It helped her grow her business through networking. When she travels she really looks to connect with locals. A quest for humanity.
She believes everybody deserves to have a support system around them when they transition into adulthood. She has been mentoring children as they transition out of foster care. She just has to show up and listen and that can make a big difference in their lives. Now she wants to go even deeper by fostering.
The more freedom we have to not take care of ourselves the more we feel like we have a choice to become an adult and some people just choose not to. There comes a time when that is not satisfying. There are things that come with adulthood that are really juicy that they are missing out on. A marker for that is somebody who is taking responsibility for their existence on this planet.
A huge part of her resilience has become from not wanting to become a statistic.
One thing that has been supportive for her is that we don’t need to jump from being the victim to the victor.
Talks about having bi-polar disorder. Having a supportive system and communicating in an effective way when she is in a balanced place has been really helpful. She was diagnosed when she was quite young but in the US once you get diagnosed it is very difficult to shake it. She hasn’t had extreme manic episodes. She does have the cloud that will come and that will take her down into the deep pit. It is like the resilient part of her has been locked up in a cave.
When she feels the cloud on the fringes she makes sure she spends time with her more positive friends.
Personal tools – maintaining a healthy body. Starts the day by being in her body – meditation, stretching, exercising. It keeps her present to taking care of herself. Being honest and communicating effectively with the people who she chooses as her family and her support structure – both when things are going good and when they are going bad. Continually being curious about herself and how she operates and how the world is operating.
Episode 18 – Julie Moreno
Degree in environmental science – friends working in environmental fields. Heard they were having some problems coming to terms with their jobs. You are trying, and are so passionate about it, and people don’t share that passion, and don’t back you up. It can make you feel a bit down about the future.
As a teacher she has to be careful that the kids don’t get too down about things. After some lessons you can see their faces, like there is no hope. So now she tries to end each lesson with solutions, something more positive.
The more you know about the problems, the more you see the statistics, it can be scary to think about the future.
A lot of the social media information about the environment is provoking feelings of powerlessness.
The pollution in Jakarta is so bad that you have to put it out of your mind sometimes otherwise it can become overwhelming.
The growth of ethical investments.
Ubud Writers Festival – talk by Tim Flannery. Cautiously optimistic. New exciting technologies that really good improve our future: seaweed farming, solar energy, desalinating seawater. There are a lot of good things going on around the world.
Danger that people think technology will solve all our environmental problems. We need to do both – we also need to reduce our emissions.
Don’t just get caught up in debates about climate change being manmade, there are so many other problems as well including pollution.
There are two reasons that pollution is so bad in Indonesia: a lack of rubbish removal infrastructure and education about littering.
All the little things do make a difference and you are also being a role model for others. Take your own cup to your local coffee shop.
Tim Flannery said we need to empower our students to be leaders, to be politically active. They need to understand politics. Learn to be activists. Taking part in a climate change march. Get involved in an NGO.
Their school is involved in their local community. Work with the local community centre. Also work with two refugee schools that are nearby. Work with some animal shelters. They see that they can actually make a difference.
The community helps make us more resilient to the possible futures we might face.
They look at the science of climate change. But they also look at it in humanities. Why didn’t the USA sign into the Paris Agreement? Look at it in economics. It is frustrating for the students to see that.
They do have some students who don’t believe that climate change is manmade.
There is a feeling among students of having to work with the mess that our generation has left for them. They are having to work with the consequences.
Surge of students trying to make a different. There is a big growth in veganism in the school. They think they are making a real difference in regards to greenhouse emissions. Some conflict about this. Now it is more low key; a reduction in the amount of meat they eat rather than total veganism. They do lessons on nutrition to learn how to get the right nutrients even with a vegan diet.
A lot of our students are well educated on global issues because of their international backgrounds. They learn critical thinking.
There are a good percentage of the students who are very aware, who want to make changes and will make a difference.
Julie maintains her resilience by trying to make changes herself. She tries not to use plastic. She takes all the wrappings off in the supermarket and leaves them at the counter. She tries to teach her own children about global issues. She rescues animals. Sometimes seeing the big difference you can make to an animal. They grow food plants in the garden and connect with nature in that way. Because it is hard in Jakarta to connect with nature. She gets an energy boost connecting with nature. Everything makes a difference and you have to believe that. She’s like to be closer to a forest. But whenever she gets into a forest she sits on a rock and meditates and keeps a picture in her head to come back to that when she needs to.Listen to the Podcast
Episode 17 – Ginny Branden
Personal definition of resilience – take what happens to you and adapt and overcome.
Became an animal communicator after becoming frustrated in working with her horse. Mentor introduced her to an animal communicator and she began studying it.
She didn’t grow up with animals but she was always drawn to them. Sketched animals, read books about animals. Always wanted to be around them. Started with one dog, then two dogs, her horse, now two cats and a chinchilla. Always had an innate burning need to be around animals.
Our connection with animals goes back to something very primary. There is a way that they are that we are missing in our lives. Get back to ways of being that are much better than the ways we are now.
Bring us back to the here and now.
Animals always forgive you so they are truly the embodiment of unconditional love. There is no greater gift than that.
Our energy contributes so much to our animals’ wellbeing.
We don’t need to be positive all the time. Your cat or dog doesn’t care if you are having a bad day they just want you to own it. Be honest with ourselves and our situation.
Being congruent – making sure what you are feeling on the outside is lining up with what you are expressing on the outside.
Horses are prey animals which affects their outlook. They have big hearts and guts. There are neurotransmitters in our gut and horses have 5 x 7 times the amount of gut we have. Of course, they are sensitive and pick up information on a very subtle level.
Horses are brutally honest but they are also incredibly generous.
Animals want love and compassion. They what us to focus on their favourite things and what they love. They want a presence of love and awareness. Connecting from the heart.
Personal tool to maintain resilience – one foot in front of the other no matter how hard it is, non-judgement, don’t get stuck in the “should”, loving and accepting exactly where she is in the moment. Meditation.
Episode 16 – Inna Neal
Personal definition of resilience – having the ability to pause, to reflect, and to take 100% responsibility. Not from the place of finding fault in yourself but more from a place of “how can I make this better, how can I find a solution?”
She used to look at life as if it was happening to her. Adversities, sadness, depression. Woke up thinking “is this it?”
Three years ago, “I just can’t do this anymore” and remember hearing her own voice which came from deep inside “what if you’re doing this all wrong?”
Wayne Dyer – You’ll See It When You Believe It
She had not read the book but she knew what it meant. You must start to believe what you want, you must start to ask yourself open ended questions – “how can I find solutions, what do I want from my life?”
The mind is a beautiful machine. It loves to stay in the comfort zone.
She began to get uncomfortable and ask herself “what is my purpose here?” From the smaller perspective “how do I want to raise my children, how do I want to show up, what thoughts do I want to have?” She became more and more comfortable with the uncomfortable. “What can I do and what are my solutions?”
Came home after that morning and watched Wayne Dyer on You Tube for hours. Began to listen, read, explore.
She was constantly on auto pilot and the auto pilot was not very pretty. Things began to change. She began to take responsibility for herself. She began to ask herself the questions. And learn through podcasts, books, masters and teachers. She began taking the action. She also began to love herself as well which was very big for her. It was a year into the process where she began to show up for her family and it was magic.
Then she asked “how do I teach this to my children?”
She trusted that the right answer would show up for her. She saw an ad on Facebook called Adventures in Wisdom. It was exactly what she was looking for. It was exactly what she wanted to teach. It was for children and it was through story telling. 27 different skills.
She had just graduated with a diploma in mental health and had decided to go further and do child psychology but something wasn’t sitting right with her. When she saw this certification she knew this was it.
She began practicing with her own and her friend’s children. Then wondered how to teach on a bigger scale. Went to the public library and asked if they would like her to do a workshop on self-confidence. They looked at her and said “we have been waiting for a person like you.” Doors began to open, she began to meet incredible people – parents and kids.
Adults are harder to teach. It isn’t so much about teaching. We can learn through information and we can take it in this intellectual level but we need to have those “ah ha” moments. With children it is not like I am teaching them something new, it is like I am reminding them. They have less auto pilot. They live more in the moment. They know innately what feels right to them. Children are born innately knowing what they need. Then they grow up and they are put in an environment where a lot of adults are telling them what to do. And they begin to forget that they have a guidance system inside of them.
She teaches 27 different skills broken up into five different programmes. Including – finding their guidance system, finding their core values, honouring who they are, honouring their own uniqueness, what self-talk looks like.
A lot of visualisation. She teaches meditation. She teaches them that they are in charge of their thoughts. How their thoughts are connected to their feelings. Managing fear, mistakes, failure, overcoming change. How to set goals, how to create the life that you love.
Parents are given a take home sheet where they get to use the same language. Parents need to become present and aware. And that will change the way they speak to their children.
Begin to pay attention to what you are thinking. It isn’t easy. The mind wants to go back to the autopilot. Set intentions about how you want to show up for your children. Ask yourself, “what do I want in this moment? What is my purpose now?”
When we teach it is not what we say, it is what we feel and what we do that teaches them how to be.
The results are pretty much instant. After teaching one or two skills she is getting emails “my child is blossoming, this programme has changed our lives.”
After a year she is noticing incredible changes and shifts in the children.
Personal tool for resilience – setting intentions. Getting ahead of the story that we repeat in our minds. Stop, pause, and set a clear intention of how you want your moment to go, how you want your day to go. Get yourself a journal and write those intentions down. There is a lot of power in writing. Start small and start simple.
Episode 15 – Teri Gosselin
Personal definition – being able to take a really challenging situation and to be able to carry on, to bounce back, to be able to take what you’ve learned from that situation and be able to turn it into something that can help others or share something in a bigger light. It sometimes starts with smaller acts of resilience.
She believes resilience is a part of our innate character.
10 years ago she was planning her wedding to her college sweetheart and learned that her brother had died suddenly in his sleep. This was tragic and completely unexpected and three weeks before her wedding day. She had never experienced death before or tragedy. It was a really challenging time. Her first step of resiliency was to go ahead with her wedding as planned.
There was a huge void on the day but she looks back and there were parts of day when he was there looking down on her. It was time to just be in the moment to celebrate, live life and embrace it.
She had to work through a lot of grief. During the first year she had to learn about her new normal. Having lost somebody, as well as being a newlywed, with a new job, with a new house, a puppy, she became pregnant, lost the baby and got pregnant again all in a year.
She gave birth to her first child and then her grandfather suddenly passed away. Dealing with the highs and lows.
Last week her eldest son’s birthday and then lost her cousin’s son to cancer on the same day.
Also had a major health scare which has come with a situation that requires lifelong self-care.
Stuffing these major moments rather than truly honouring these situations and how she felt. After the health scare she realised that now was the time to find what lit her soul up.
Became an entrepreneur working with a direct marketing company by sharing her love of makeup. This gave her an opportunity to connect with people and help them feel beautiful from the inside and outside.
A couple of years ago she started a spiritual exploration. She went to see a medium in a group setting. Her brother and her grandfather came through together. Also her grandmother came through briefly. It gave her mum and her sister some sense of peace even though initially they were sceptical. We learned that a sign from her brother was the dragonfly. She looks for them. Dragonflies represent transformation and change.
Last summer she saw them and realised this was her next phase. She found some Facebook groups based in spirituality and soaked it all in and connected with people. She hired a coach. This allowed her to do deep inner work – journaling, gratitude lists, books, podcasts, self care rituals, meditation. She had resisted some of things for a really long time. She started making it a practice and doing it daily. Went from a period of pain to her purpose. She is learning new tools every day and meeting new people and learning from them.
There is a lot of strength required to share with people that you need self-care.
She discovered she could use her experiences to help others as a Transformational Strength Coach. Hoping to inspire and empower others women to seek out what they meant to be doing.
Personal tool for resilience – journaling. Starts with a meditation and then writes what comes up.
Episode 14 – Emma Gibbs-Ng
Her mantra – everything happens for a reason. In any situation there is feedback that helps you become who you want to be. That statement has helped her to overcome a lot in her life.
She has always been interested in people. She believes everyone has a story and that intrigues her. She had an amazing upbringing. She was very high up in sport. Had an amazing family. Her first love became quite violent with her. She ended up having a domestic violence relationship but also one where he was very unfaithful. This was her first experience of relationships. She also went on to suffer sexual abuse by someone he knew. It was the start of her journey to where she is right now. It has given her an understanding, a drive and an inner strength she didn’t know she had. She had a strong desire to never let anyone feel the same way that she has felt. She wants to protect people from feeling alone, lost or dirty.
She got made redundant in her dream job. She and her husband had fertility issues and suffering miscarriages. After 3 ½ years they finally conceived their child naturally. She believes she wouldn’t be the wife that she is or the mum that she is had everything been easy. She escaped a lot through travelling and drinking, putting on a face to make sure that she looking okay externally because internally she was a wreck. She got signed off from work with PTSD. She couldn’t take this charade she was playing anymore. She started on her recovery journey through counselling and coaching.
She decided to take her passions – which is helping people to transform from being vulnerable to confident and believing in themselves and being successful. She started researching life coaching and it described her dream job.
Only started telling her story publicly in the last 18 months. Felt that she wasn’t being transparent with herself if she didn’t tell her story. Started by recording a Facebook Live. Felt liberated by doing it. She wanted to show people there is life beyond past experiences. It doesn’t have to define you. Also wants to reduce the stigma behind trauma.
Resilience is keeping going – it is finding inner strength. Overcoming adversity is the definition of resilience.
There are a few people who have judged her but she doesn’t care. The people who love her don’t judge her and she doesn’t judge herself anymore either.
Mindset – you can achieve anything you put your mind to. It is the most powerful resource we have. It is misunderstood. You have to put in the consistency, the hard work, to get the ball rolling. You have to understand how to use it to direct it down the right path that you want to go. We are already proving it works. We are just proving that its works in the negative not the positive.
It takes 21 days to change a habit. Show up everyday and treat yourself as you want to be treated. Don’t stop when times are tough. That is when you have got to dig deep. That is when your mind needs you to be positive the most.
Every day there is a story that we tell ourselves. Those stories define all areas of our life. These stories keep us stuck. The moment you bring intention to what they are; the intensity goes straight away. Put the mindset techniques in place to diffuse it and release it.
Hypnotherapy – works on two different levels. Deep relaxation which allows you to rebalance, to tap into your intuition, to calm your immune system down. Regression work can take you back to that particular time and you can self-heal and you can let go; it is very safe because no one can force you to do anything you don’t want to do. Allows you to unlock anything that is holding you back. It is brilliant for reframing mindsets. We have the resources that we need within ourselves. Hypnotherapy helps you reconnect to it.
Personal tools for resilience – kinesiology every three months, bubble of protection if entering an intense session. Daily routine – meditation, exercise, EFT. Regular massages to release tension. Stamping on the grass with bare feet.
Episode 13 – Danielle Smith
Personal definition of resilience – bounce back. Being strong as well being able to bounce back from any situation.
Book – Yesterday’s Tomorrow. Her life story written in fiction format. Talking about how she made it through child hood abuse and neglect at the hands of her mother and her step father. There were a lot of times where she was sent to bed without a meal as a form of punishment. Her Mum taught her to read at a very early age. So Danielle would dive into her book and become the character in that book. Goldilocks and the Three Bears was one of her favourites because she would go into that book and eat porridge. She wanted to give her readers a chance to get away. Although the story has so many emotions but it is a nice little roller coaster; going into the world of Aliyx.
It was hard for her to develop relationships with friends and also dating was hard in beginning; just trusting people.
Triggers are real. You may think you are over the situation and then something can happen. One of her punishments one time was a meal of liver and onions doused with hot sauce and butter milk to drink. Growing up she couldn’t stand the smell of hot sauce. It would make her gag and cry. She was 25 years old before she could smell hot sauce and not be taken back to that time.
Once she moved in with her Dad she didn’t hear from her Mum for a year. When she did start seeing her it was Court ordered and monitored. When she finally had weekend visits with her the relationship was very on the surface because her mother was dealing with alcohol addiction.
At 22 she had her daughter and she noticed that there was a generational cycle they were going through. Her Mum’s Mum didn’t get on and she was the same in her relationship with her Mum. She vowed that her daughter and her would not go down the same path. It showed her Mum and they could have better. It took some years but now they have talked solidly for the last four years.
She treats her daughter like she wanted to be treated.
When she started counselling as an adult her counsellor told her – “you have a right to be angry, you have a right to be sad, you have a right to be depressed”. She had never had anyone tell her that and she cried because she had been validated. She had grown up being told she was crazy.
Once she lived with her father she had a stable home, she had a meal every day, her step mum did her hair and she had clean clothes. She went through verbal and emotional abuse. She was told she wouldn’t be anything, she would end up like her Mum, she’d be stupid like her Mum, she looked just like her Mum.
The counselling really helped when she realised she had to do the steps. Going to support group helps you to realise that you are not alone. That was the most extremely amazing thing for her.
Preparing for her film launch. It is called Don’t Be Quiet. It is the visual to her book. She talks about her surviving abuse and now it is her responsibility to help others. She is also a survivor of domestic violence, suicide and sexual assault. She always felt alone. That is why the hashtag Don’t Be Quiet is important. They will be your voice until you find your own.
Film will premiere on Sunday April 22nd at the Gate Way Film Centre in Columbus, Ohio.
Being able to help people is the greatest feeling ever for Danielle.
She teaches people the signs of abuse so they can help others who are in trouble.
The hardest time for a domestic violence victim is when they are trying to leave. That is when they will need your support the most.
She had an escape plan and a place to go to that her abusive partner did not know about.
The book ends in a cliff hanger but there will be a part two – as she is writing another book.
Personal tools – affirmations. Make sure you are planting positive seeds into the air so that they will come back to you. “I am wonderful, I am beautiful, I am amazing.”
Episode 12 – Dr Lucy Hone
Personal definition of resilience – Professor Karen Reivich – resilience is how we cope and how we steer through challenges and adversity but it’s also about learning from them. She has removed the words bounced back from the definition as she hasn’t felt bouncy in the last few years.
The capacity for resilience thankfully resides in all of us. It isn’t a fixed trait. It is a combination of the way we choose to think and act and the way we can use our strengths and skills and relationships to support us in times of need.
Resilience is built by how you deal with what happens to you.
There is an ideal number of events that happen to you before it becomes detrimental.
Talked about the impact of the earthquakes on the Christchurch community.
The education sector in Christchurch has changed for the better in many ways. Part of a MOE funded community of practice with secondary schools in Christchurch at the moment. This is a yearlong pilot project. Four representatives from every single secondary school. All sharing what works for wellbeing. There is a shift of post traumatic growth within the city that we realise we have to do things differently. People have learned to work together in an unprecedented fashion.
MOE talking about promoting resilience in our schools, putting wellbeing first. We would like to see this community of practice rolled out to other regions in New Zealand.
Works internationally with colleagues all over the place who are promoting resilience in schools. The first lesson we have learned is that you have to start with the staff. Children have a fantastic BS monitor so if you don’t buy into it at staff you can’t pass that learning on to those you are teaching. They talk a lot about health by stealth. It is going to take a cohort to see any significant change.
Really important to involve the parents in the learning. It has to be whole school well-being. You can’t have a system shift unless you are addressing every aspect of the system. They run introductory sessions for parents called Positive Psychology 101. Whanau (family) engagement is key.
Hypothesis – she was better able to adapt to Abi’s loss because she had these tools at her fingertips because she’d had her academic training and then she’d had professional practice in helping organisation in the post-earthquake environment. How to foster relationships when I needed them most and how not to fall into common thinking traps that make us alienate us from those relationships. She would describe it as latent knowledge.
Trauma and tragedy, adversity, tragedy and loss do not discriminate – they happen to us all. It is really important that we equip the whole population to help themselves.
The free range childhoods that we had definitiately contributes to your resilience. Being able to fail, being able to fall, bruise your ego, have relatioships that are testing. Those things do actually boost our resilience over time. We learn from struggle. As parents we don’t like to see our children struggle. But she also knows that looking at all the research, and anecdotal evidence, that if you mop up after them, and clear the way of any obstacles, that doesn’t develop robust children who are able to cope. It is really important to let your children to fail otherwise we create fragile thoroughbreds.
Carol Dweck’s – growth mindset. You Tube videos about this subject.
Believing that you are born brilliant reduces people’s willingness to put themselves out there and at risk because they fear they are going to expose themselves as not being perfect.
“Next stop the five stages of grief…” Grief experts and literature they were provided with at the time of Abi’s death were so passive in tone. If felt we told to just sit there and wait. All of my training stood at odds with that; focusing your attention on what you can change and accepting as best you can the things that you can’t change. She wanted to bring positive psychology to the bereavement context. Parental bereavement is known as being the worst type of bereavement. You are learning to relive in an entirely new landscape. She didn’t want to remove grief but she wanted to cope. And she wanted to know she was doing everything she possibly could to ease who own and her families process through that loss. We discovered you can live and grieve simultaneously. It is so important that people are told that there are ways of thinking and ways of behaving that will support them through bereavement. And these are pretty simple strategies.
All of wellbeing and resilience is about trying things for yourselves. Ask yourself “is whatever I’m doing helping or harming me towards whatever goal is important to me?”
We expect people to be mind readers especially in grief. She wrote a whole chapter in her book on how to help the bereaved.
One tool for maintaining resilience – mantra “accept the good.” It teaches her to choose what she focuses on. You have got to notice the good. We have a negativity bias so we really have to tune into the good. Find your own language that works for you.
Episode 11 – Natalie Hormann
Personal resilience – the ability to cope with stressors, to cope with events that are potentially unpleasant. Community resilience – coloured and varied, tight knit, able to meet its own needs from within. Being resourceful and being able to put yourself in a resourceful state. Important to be able to manage our state.
Pre-traumatic stress – stress in anticipation of what is to happen – as relates to the environment. One component is grief – a feeling of loss in anticipation. Fear for our children. What sort of planet are we going to leave behind?
An underlying level of distress; a certain level of overwhelm, an inability to grasp what is going on, an inability to address it. Issues are on such a huge scale that we can feel powerless.
Burnout amongst environmental activists. Very passionate, taking action on the ground, changing their own lifestyle, being engaged in their communities, as well as working full time. It can get incredibly exhausting.
There are two circles. Your circle of concern (which is huge) – deforestation, pollution, climate change. Within that circle is a smaller circle which is your circle of influence. Get out of your circle of concern and focus instead on your circle of influence. Recycling, not purchasing palm oil, purchasing sustainable timber etc. Bring things into your sphere of power. That is where the satisfaction lies. You can also lobby companies.
Natalie has recently recorded a workshop module on how to influence others. What doesn’t work is preaching. The best way to inspire behaviour change is to give people pleasant experiences. If you want to get people involved in growing food, take them to a community garden, have a party, make it a nice experience. Cook a lovely vegetarian meal for your family.
Story telling is incredibly powerful. Also make it personal. We have a strong tendency to hide behind facts. But this usually invites argument. Telling personal stories about climate change gives it a name, and a face.
Is it worth it? Can I do it? You need to answer both of these questions before people will change.
Natalie grows her own fruit and veg. At the moment a little more than they can cope with. Has just processed 20 kg of peaches in the last few days.
2 acres with an orchard, the gardens, some chickens and some ducks. Using permaculture principles predominantly. It takes a lot less time than you might think to adopt this kind of lifestyle. Endless amounts of resources on the Internet to learn about permaculture. Lots of books. Permaculture course – two weeks full time. Natalie has just finished creating a Green Living Master Class taking you from wherever you are to having all these areas of your life under control.
Grow what you like eating, what you eat a lot of, and what is not cheap to buy.
Using these criteria, you can make your first decision. There are things to grow easier than others. Also learn about seasonality. A lot of the garden centres will sell you all sorts of seedling year-round. If you plant broccoli in summer you won’t be that successful as they will get eaten by butterflies and caterpillars. Stay away from those things that need a greenhouse to grow in. Lots of diversity of crops is good in case something goes wrong with one of the crops – such as a late frost or a storm.
80% is mindset and 20% is skill. Go in with curiosity – give it a go and make it fun.
Natalie’s personal tools for resilience – daily yoga, journaling, mindset work. Knowing what works to put me into a more resourceful state. She likes to sit by the river with her dog. Find out what it is that makes you feel better.
We can change what we do, what we focus on, and the meaning that we give to things – in order to change our mindset.
Instead of just focusing on the problem, start focusing on the solutions. Bring it back to what you can do to make a difference.
Natalie is excited about the opportunity that we have. She also feels blessed because through the work she meets so many people who are all doing that own little thing to bring about a better world. It gives her a lot of hope. We all experience loss and change throughout our lives. Not just related to the environment. Maybe the reasons may now be environmental. All we can really do is to learn our personal resilience and manage our mindset and our ability to cope with these circumstances as best we can. None of us know what is going to happen. Look at things reality but don’t catastrophise them.
Episode 10 – Bree Stedman
Personal definition of resilience – being able to bounce back from adversity.
Even from childhood she could always get past things that might pull her down. She doesn’t like to feel disempowered.
In 2012 she was at the end of a long journey of personal development but things came to a head when her head talk and the lack of control she felt in the role of being a mother was really starting to show up in the way she treated her kids. Had two masks that she wore. Behind closed doors feeling like a very different person from the professional face. Her relationship with her youngest child was violent. She felt like walking out. Both of her children have challenges ADHD, and severe learning difficulties.
The turning point was when she walked up behind her son and he flinched. That was like a slap in the face for her. Her son, who is only 4 years old, was clearly very scared of her. She decided to stop blaming him and his challenges but instead focused on how she handled the situation.
What helped was being better at understanding herself as a woman. Even though she was practicing self-help she had not taken into consideration that she was both female and hormonal. She began to understood what it means to have a hormone cycle.
Very few studies are based on the female brain. Only just starting to validate that the male and female brain are different.
Key differences – women link emotions to events 25% more than men – we have a large limbic system. We get caught up in reanalysing that situation and the emotion connected to it becomes reinforced each time we revisit the scenario.
Regardless of whether you have a period – women from the age of 6 months old until the day they die –will have hormonal fluctuations every single day of their life. This will affect how you are able to deal with life situations. This gives you the ability to be kinder to yourself. Bree calls them tender periods. On those days when you realise you are tender you can ask yourself “what can I do right now to make myself feel better than I do at present?” There is always something we can physically do to move beyond feeling not in control.
We as women often expect the men in our lives to know what it is we need or want. We need to tell them what we need from them in that moment. Most of the time men just want to help. They take on the responsibility of having to solve the problem for us.
Lyn talks about the incident of the mouse. Bree worked through the balloon exercise to help lower her emotional reaction to the event. Events become charged by emotions and memories. Recognise that an event has triggered a whole string of stories that cause you as a woman to tie emotion to the whole event.
We can’t always control what happens in life but we can control how long we stay connected to an event emotionally.
Epigenetics. Inherited genes that get switched on and off based on events in life. Bruce Lipton has written many books on the subject.
Own Your BS – The No Nonsense Guide to Addressing Female Head Talk is the name of Bree’s best selling book.
The balloon exercise: Identify what it is you are telling yourself. Don’t analyse it simply acknowledge. How are you feeling? Where does it live in the body? What does it look like? Then blow it into a balloon and pop it.
Episode 9 – Lisa Robbin Young
Resilience – owning your truth and standing in that space.
Creative entrepreneurship is cyclical – there are times you need to push and times where you need space.
Know yourself, own your truth and be fully who you are. Don’t live in a box that someone has painted for you. Do it your way because your way is going to be what is best for you.
Who are you really here to reach? There are people out there who need exactly what you have in the way that you are offering it. Are there enough of those people to keep you afloat?
Who are the people who are going to most connect with your message and how are you going to get in front of that audience?
Show up consistently; as authentically and genuinely as possible. Walk the line of being authentic and sharing your personal stories. It is legitimate to have private you and business you. There are things you never share publicly.
Consistency is the key to building trust and this what people will come to want from you. If you show up in a mask, people are going to expect the mask. If you take it off they may not like it.
Anything you share has to connect the dots of how it can apply to the other person’s situation.
The people who see you mess up and then see you fix it they love you most of all.
“The first is always the worst.” You are constantly improving.
Look ruthlessly and honestly at your reality. You have to work within the confines of what you have available to you.
Our business and ourselves are not mutually exclusive.
Where is the best use of my time -the best use of my resources? If you can get a positive return on your investment then it is a win.
Avoid getting trapped in comparison.
It is about – will this make a difference if someone hears it? Sometimes we do just need to talk for our own benefit. In our catharsis other people get their own catharsis.
You have to define success on your own terms.
Making money is important or you don’t have a business. But it takes time to build an audience. It takes time to build the know, trust and like factor with people.
There are people in the world who want exactly what you have and they are waiting for it. Your job is it create it and put it out there.
You have to let go of the attachment. You are creating because you have to.
How does it serve them, how does it bless them?
Personal tools – morning routine. Time out. Once a quarter she has a leave me alone day. Allows her to reconnect with herself and follow where her intuition is going to take her. Gives her new perspective to bring back to her work.
Episode 8 – Lauren Selfridge
Lauren is an associate marriage and family therapist. She works with couples and individuals in California using Imago Relationship Therapy.
Her personal definition – “resilience is when I can take what is happening and make a beautiful story out of it.”
She was a very spiritually connected being from a very early age. She describes herself as having a little bit of fierceness to her. She also had things happen to her that have made her strong where she wasn’t strong. They shed light in the areas where she needed to grow.
The concept of building beloved community was inspired by a colleague Shirley Strong. How can we build competencies as a community towards social justice while keeping the connection to the spiritual world present? We want both the wisdom and compassion. For her it is about bringing consciousness to the areas where she has privilege. Bringing her heart to the work so that she is not blaming or shaming herself or others but holding ourselves responsible for the good of everyone.
Her favourite way of building community is through story telling. We have to be willing to share our stories on a deep and vulnerable level. We need to bring curiosity to the table and have a genuine interest in other people’s stories; try to get outside our own minds.
She thinks you can build your community exactly as you want to. For many people it is important to have in person connection but if you have a chronic illness this is not always possible. She believes video communities on the Internet, such as Facebook Live, are going to change the sense of isolation that many of us feel. It is vulnerable, it is imperfect, it is not pre-recorded, we can see the facial expressions of people, we can share our emotions through emoticon buttons, or put a message in the chat box.
Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix and Helen La Kelly Hun is the main Imago book. They say that “talking is one of the most dangerous things you can do”. You can end up looking for where they are wrong and we are right. It can increase the pain in the relationship. Get out of the cycle of defensiveness and blaming. It is important to turn to toward each other physically and designate someone who is sharing first. Put down your baggage (opinions, judgement) so you can walk unburdened across the bridge into the other person’s world. Curiosity, openness, willing to see through the other person’s eyes. Then as they share mirror what they are telling you in a neutral way. Tell them why they make sense based on who they are. The third step is to emphasise and guess a few emotions the other person might be feeling. Can incorporate that mindset into regular conversation. We need to want to nurture the connection in our relationship because when we can do that we come up with amazing things together. Rupture in a relationship is an opportunity to deepen that relationship.
She says that if she feels inside that what she is about to say is really clever then she should not say it – because usually clever is not about connecting it is about shaming.
What we think we are arguing about is rarely what we are actually hurting about. The only reason we are not moving through it easily is because there are emotional ties to the past.
The inspiration behind her podcast was her own experience of being diagnosed with relapsing multiple sclerosis. Her world was turned upside down. She knew she had some choices ahead of her. She decided she was going to make a choice to make this into a positive thing. It hasn’t always been positive. She has been through some of the darkest times through this but she has come to meet herself on a deeper level. Through her podcast she wanted to ask deeper questions – how is your spirit, how are you getting through this, what are some of the biggest surprises for you, if your illness could speak what would it say to you?
She is learning to go with the flow as much as she can. Her guiding quote – “it wasn’t as she planned, it was perfect instead” by Byron Katie.
A lot of the way she has seen herself in her life was around her physical energy. It affects her if she feels she has changed at a core level. “Am I my physical energy”? She loves to dance but she has found other ways to express the part of her that wants to dance. There are some things we just cannot do – sometimes we need to grieve that we can’t do the thing.
Personal resilience tool – “letting my symptoms be my tour guide”. They are in charge of where they take and if I am willing I go along with the adventure. “Take me across the bridge, what have you got to teach me?” This expands her world view and reduces stress.
Episode 7 – Building Resilience with Yanina Purcell
Resilience is the ability to bounce back from things and also learn and grow.
Yanina talked about her experience of immigrating to New Zealand. They moved because she felt she had to rather than wanting too. The culture looked the same but it was not. She talked about trying to replant herself into the soil of a new country. It helped to keep reminding herself why she had immigrated. Making friends and developing a support system is important.
Part of resilience is being vulnerable and being prepared to ask for help.
It took three years before Yanina felt she belonged.
Everything that is difficult makes you stronger. Falling to pieces is not an option.
Her husband had previously been ill but towards the end of the first year that they were in NZ he was diagnosed with another brain tumour. 18 months after their arrival he died.
Even though things around her were falling down she wouldn’t let herself fall down.
Friends helped during this time and the fact she had to put her energy into her business. This kept her grounded. Her two girls kept her grounded too.
She went through the stages of grief. Initially everyone is around you and paying attention to you and you don’t have time to think about who you are now. A few weeks or months later suddenly that’s not there anymore. Now you have got to make this work.
Grief doesn’t follow a natural progression – when things come up you have to let it out.
She was suddenly a solo parent of two young kids in a new country. She had to do everything on my own. It was almost like reinventing herself.
Starting running again. She knew she had to look after herself.
She decided she needed to run a marathon before she turned 50. She also went through a weight loss journey. Retrained to be a personal trainer. More recently she has studied nutrition. Now she is a health coach.
With physical health comes mental health as well.
The mind is a powerful organ and it tells you to stop exercising because it is trying to protect us. It is knowing that you can and pushing yourself a little bit further each time. Having something to aim for helps.
Endorphins are a sort of myth but exercise does boost your serotonin levels – but then so does chocolate.
Nutrition is a young science and there is a lot of conflicting information out there. Try and follow your hunger cues, eat whole foods, don’t calorie count. Making sure you get your food groups which are your fruits and vegetables, protein, good fats and smart carbohydrates (non-processed carbs – whole grains, legumes, sweet potato).
There are red light foods that really shouldn’t be around you. A good statement is “I could eat that but I am choosing not to for now.” Bring yourself back to your goals and values at that time. Stop and be present. “Is this in line with what I want to be doing right now?”
Find out the reasons behind your habits. You cannot out exercise a bad diet.
She talked about the important of goal setting in pursuing a new health regime.
Yanina uses positive self-talk to help support herself. “I can do this.”
Episode 6 – Building Resilience with Lisa Avery
Originally from England but has been living in Spain for the last 12 years.
Resilience – the ability to bounce back from adversity emotionally psychologically and physically. It is also possible to experience post traumatic growth.
Just completed a three-year master’s degree in Positive Psychology and Coaching. Positive psychology is the study of human flourishing and coaching is about giving the person the space in which to reflect on their narrative so they are able to create the lives they want to create. They work very well together.
When it comes to happiness approximately 50% is genetic, 40% is within our control and 10% is circumstances. This is a very empowering statistic. We can learn how to be more resilient, we can learn how to manage our emotions, we can learn how to be more optimistic.
Positive psychology is not to be mistaken with positive thinking. It is great to embrace all emotional states. By letting each and every emotion in, by acknowledging it, by labelling it, we are actually dissipating the power of that emotion.
Positive psychology is the study of optimal human functioning. It is about taking people from 0 – 10.
Sadness and anger can be natural responses in certain circumstances.
Barbara Frederickson – the broaden and broad theory -every time we experience a positive emotion it opens us up to the rest of the world.
We need much more positive in our lives to counterbalance the negative.
Introverts need a little more time to recharge their energy but they are just as capable of being happy as an extrovert.
Quality and not quantity when it comes to close friendship. It is important to connect at a deep level. It is not about the number of people we know but the quality of the relationship and the level of openness that we have in those relationships.
Acronym PERMA – positive emotion, engagement, relationships, meaning, achievement. Need to find balance in each of these aspects of our lives.
Hedonic happiness which is about pleasure and eudemonic which is deeper and more meaningful.
Growing with Gratitude is a positive mental health programme for young people. 10-week programme in primary school. Began in Australia. Excellent feedback – happier children, more peaceful classroom environment, spills over effect into families and into the community. Positive domino effect. Lisa is introducing this into schools in the UK but the programme is worldwide.
Australia and North America are both pioneering countries in terms of resilience and other mental health programmes in schools.
The first step towards a journey of resilience is to get to know yourself at a deeper level. A tool from the University of Pennsylvania is called the VIA Character Strength Survey. Ranks the 24 human character strands. When you begin to have an idea of your strengths you can understand how you use them in your life.
Then look at the acronym PERMA and see where you might have an imbalance.
Journaling you can help you process your emotions very effectively.
Another exercise is to write about your future life in the present tense as though you are already living the life over four consequent days. This helps people to feel more motivated and resilient.
Also remember to deeper your relationships to ensure you have a few high-quality friendships.
It is good to come to a point of real self-knowledge and self-compassion. Also cultivate a growth mindset. See any mistake or error as simply learning. What would I say to a good friend if they made the same mistake? Try and imagine saying those words to yourself.
Learn not to take yourself too seriously.
Episode 5 – Building Resilience with Linzi Band
Linzi teaches as the Australian Independent School – Jakarta, Indonesia. Grade 7 – 12. 160 students. Mixed cultures throughout the world.
Started as an EAL teacher. Felt there was something missing among pastoral care. Had a background as a Youth and Community Development worker in some very deprived areas or the UK. Had a conversation with the principal about putting in a programme to support the students’ needs holistically. If students are socially and emotionally ready then they will learn but they need support to manage the intensity of their emotions. The principal gave her a trial period to develop a programme.
She created her own curriculum which gives her the freedom to create. The proramme is not only proactive but it can also be managed reactively as well to deal with issues that might occur within the student body.
Reports of bullying reports are going down. There is a significant increase in positive by standing which tells me the students are increasing their confidence to speak out. Having a positive attitude and a growth mindset supports a student to feel more confident and be able to engage in potentially conflicting conversations.
Parents love the programme. A lot of them wish they had this programme when they were at school. Relief that their child is being equipped with the skills that they always wish they had. Their child has a fair chance of coming through school without having to experience “the school of hard knocks”.
Resilience is learned from experiences but a lot of it is the way we handle the experience. We need to be explicitly taught to manage our emotions, to have empathy of others, have self-efficacy, be mindful, have the growth mindset, positive self-talk. We don’t naturally do these things. We need to practice this daily. It gives us a better chance of being resilient when the tough times come and to come out of the situation with less emotional trauma.
She brings a lot of her youth work into the classroom. The classroom has to be a safe place. There is a lot of discussion, lots of emotionally based words. Students are noisy but peaceful because they know they are safe.
Her personal journey to resilience came about from the school of hard knocks. She struggled through school, was bullied intensively and responded badly to that bullying. Her mother died when she was 17 just as she had left school. She brought a lot of things into her life that were very difficult to manage. It wasn’t until she got into her mid-20s that she realised she had survived and decided to use that strength to help others. Her Dad became her mother and was an amazing man. She had a great auntie who was an amazing role model. She was tough and could get through anything. She was lucky to have those people in her life, without them she’s not sure she would be here. Having those experiences took her to university – she had developed an affinity with disengaged people who had it tough.
If she had had someone like this at her school she would have been a lot better off but she is not sure she would be where she is today. She doesn’t see why any student on her watch has to go through these things.
She believes in working with young people while their minds are still open. Also working alongside the parents so they can go home and have those knowledgeable conversations with their kids.
There are great websites out there for parents. Positive self-talk to encourage their child to turn things into something positive. Children want their parents to hear them. Listen, listen, listen. Model optimism in the family home. Acknowledge that some days the student won’t be positive and that is okay. Smiling Mind app. 7-minute mindfulness practices. Can start at primary school. Work with your children to become more empathetic towards others. Research, seek out workshops, talk to other parents.
Finding a school where your child is going to flourish and not just academically. Parents and teachers should work together as a team.
One recommended tool for resilience – a growth mindset. Also controlling impulsivity, healthy optimism, positive self talk.
Episode 4 – Building Resilience with Marina Darlow
Resilience is the ability to come back from a crisis, from a failure, from a bad set of circumstances and is based on the faith on yourself and the world too. It is based on the belief that you can come back.
Trained as an industrial engineer.
Moved to the States 11 years ago. Found a job which was really above and beyond what she had been trained for. Thrown into the water of managing huge multi million-dollar projects across three continents.
Got burnt out and publicly went in Facebook to say the project management part of her life was over.
Did an interior design degree.
Felt very unsure and lost; did not know what she wanted to do with her life and career. Worked with a business coach who dragged her by the ear into entrepreneurship. Helped a friend set up systems in her therapy business. That person told other people and that was how her business was born. Within five months had a full practice.
But then moved to Boston. Big city, dominated by a completely different type of company. Either large companies or young cocky tech start-ups. She had no place there. She struggled for a year.
When you put a new system in place and then you get to see your true reality. For example – you are not making what you think you were making. You need to work twice as many hours as they thought you did. I need to be there and be the comforting presence beyond the professional.
She was not always emotionally strong during this transition. She is blessed with an incredibly supportive family; parents and husband. The second thing, that still keeps her going, is indoor rock climbing.
Treated exercise as punishment for 35 years but then she found rock climbing and found it very engaging for her body and mind at the same time. Rocking climbing is solving a set of riddles with your body. So many parallels with business.
Bouldering is done without a rope and you have thick matts to fall on. Can’t think of a more resilience building practice than that. Must learn how to fall correctly. This is also true for business. You need to take calculated risks. You need to train yourself to only take risks you can come back from.
Then there is rock climbing with a top rope. Someone is insuring you with the other end of the rope. If you fall you dangle on the rope; you don’t fall to the ground. This creates the idea that you can’t fall; and you can take a much bigger risk. You have to trust the person holding the rope; but that is true of any meaningful relationship.
There are no completely full proof systems. Good systems mitigate the chances that you fail; and help you come back from a crisis.
A system consists of a container and a process. Mint (an online financial tool) is a container; what you need to make it into a system is a process that you are engaging with.
The principles of business systems work the same way in your personal life but clients come to those conclusions themselves rather than being personally coached.
When you have good systems that show you what is happening, and automate the things you don’t want to make mistakes on, you feel more in control. You see better what is going on and you focus on more important things.
Control doesn’t mean you constantly hold everything in your fists. It is not stressed, fully focused, anxiety fed control because this is unsustainable. Relaxed control is seeing the path; knowing what you control and letting go of what you can’t control.
Entrepreneurs require lots of resilience. It is unpredictable. Creative entrepreneurship where you bare you soul is a very vulnerable place to be. Charlie Gilkey says you need to be functional delusional to be a creative entrepreneur. It is scary; it is a roller coaster. Very intense ups and downs.
To build resilience keep a folder with good things that happen to you. Client feedback, people who loved your talk at a conference, successful launches. Marina keeps hers personal – blog posts that validate how she thinks, feedback etc. She comes back to it at times of struggle. As entrepreneurs there is nobody to validate us especially at the beginning. Keep a folder with all these validations, feedback and where you made a difference and read it when you feel like crying in your office for three hours.
Episode 3 – Building Resilience with Evelyn Asher
- Personal definition of resilience – the ability to go forward by looking in the rear-view mirror and seeing how the situation was handled, the personal choices made and people who have helped along the way.
- Her role as a global community coach is about broadening people’s perspectives. Helping women in technology pitch their products.
- Two big loves are writing and social justice. Resilience is involved in these fields. She had three brothers growing up and they challenged her to be able to participate more. She now tries to bring those qualities out in others. She has also worked with many non-profits. Her parents modelled this and showed how committed they were to the community.
- Her parents immigrated from Russia and Hungary. They never talked about their experiences but they modelled resilience in the way they started their new lives in the US.
- Evelyn journals every day. She also carries her journal with her and if she has to wait during the day she will take the time to write. Sometimes it is random thoughts, other times poems. If she has a meeting she will go to her living room sanctuary and write deeper thoughts.
- She interviewed the author of The Happiness Hack and makes sure to take herself away from distraction where her thoughts can be much clearer.
- She moved to be with someone special but 18 months later (which were like 20 golden years) they suffered from a health trauma. Evelyn was inspired by Julia Cameron’s book The Right to Write. She wrote on her porch every day and published an anthology called A Bridge of Hope in 2003.
- She talked about her involvement in Tracking Wonder Quest and how it focuses her on the need for connection, collaboration and community.
- She talks about latch key children who never had opportunity for conversation and are now entering the workforce. She helps those people to develop their conversational skills.
- She also mentors kindergarten children and gives them much needed one on one attention. She loves spending time with the children and has been doing this for 10 years.
- She again talked about the value of journaling as a tool to greater resilience.
Episode 2 – Building Resilience with Melissa Turner
- Melissa’s personal definition of resilience is being accepting where you are at, but taking forward steps and acknowledging those steps.
- There is no “certificate of resilience”. Life will continue to test you.
- Melissa’s personal journey began with a diagnosis of state 4 Endometriosis at the age of 19. She pursued every conventional treatment, including seven surgeries. She was living on painkillers and hormone treatments. Seven years ago, at the suggestion of a friend, she decided to explore natural treatments.
- She began a blog in 2010 to record her journey and started to attract followers. She now has a community of around 10,000 women. Leading a community created a feeling of pressure to find solutions. Melissa had no mentor to inspire her or to follow.
- Now she enjoys her community as there is hope and lots of examples of success from within her group.
- The community is about empowering women by providing options and choice. Giving them a feeling of control. Mental shifts that can help.
- Her nutrition guidelines are all about reducing inflammation in the body, autoimmune response and hormonal imbalance. We all have this to some degree so the nutrition suggestions would be helpful to a wider group.
- Her technique is called REACH which is an acronym for replenish, exercise, affirm (mind / body connection), cleanse and help and support.
- She started a dialogue with endometriosis which helped her to connect with her body. She views it as a naughty child who misbehaves because its needs are not being met.
- Due to her upbringing Melissa had developed timeous perfectionism which is a desire to achieve things quickly and perfectly all at the same time. This was very stressful and contributed to her illness.
- Melissa’s suggested tools for building greater resilience include a wellness card which is an affirmative statement that you read morning and night. You also decorate the card and have it in a highly visible place. She also recommended journaling and encouraging mindset shifts that way.
Melissa’s website is www.endoempowered.com
Inside Knowledge website is www.insideknowledge.blog
Our Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/ISKPodcast/
Episode 1 – Building Resilience with Dr Christina Baird
- Christina has a Phd in Psychology but it not a registered clinical psychologist.
- Talked about her interest in resilience stemming from her personal experience of infertility and endometriosis. She also became interested through her work supporting aid and development workers. She noticed different people could come back from the same place with totally different views of their experience. What made those who coped well different from those who did not?
- Christina gave her favourite definition of resilience.
- Resilience is a process that can be learned.
- Your level of resilience varies at different stages in your life.
- You need to develop your own resiliency practice.
- It is important to have social support. You need a variety of friends. Make it a priority to nurture your relationships.
- The important of emotional intelligence – learning to express and regulate your emotions.
- Find ways to have fun – increase your positive experiences.
- The role of spirituality. Gives a sense of coherence to your experience. If you are involved in a spiritual community it provides an access to social support. It gives you a sense of identity that can be helpful during times of change. It gives perspective and hope.
- Your spirituality needs to be big enough to hold your questions as part of your quest to find meaning.
- Resilience in organisations needs to be modelled by the managers although there are ways that employees can introduce it into the workplace too.
- Reviewed the seven elements of resilience.
- Although resilience might not be taught as a subject in schools; threads of resilience are taught such as problem solving and managing feelings.
- Talks about some of the first steps on a journey of resilience.
- Talked briefly about ACT.
- Important to build self-confidence – build on your strengths.
- We live in an information heavy age so we can experience information overload. Become curious and experimental. Try out new things and see how they work for you. The placebo effect is underrated. If it works for you then it works.
Christina’s website – https://www.breadandpomegranates.com/
Inside Knowledge website – https://insideknowledge.blog/
More about ACT – https://positivepsychologyprogram.com/act-acceptance-and-commitment-therapy/
Martin Seligman’s books – https://www.amazon.com/Martin-E.-P.-Seligman/e/B001ILOB78