Reinvention Rebels

Reinvention in Your 60s: How I Created a Self-Care Lifestyle & Gave Myself Permission to Blossom with Dr. Sheryl Barnes

December 15, 2022 Wendy Battles/Dr. Sheryl Barnes Season 4 Episode 14
Reinvention Rebels
Reinvention in Your 60s: How I Created a Self-Care Lifestyle & Gave Myself Permission to Blossom with Dr. Sheryl Barnes
Show Notes Transcript

How does one reinvent herself in her 60s to blossom and create a life she loves? By cultivating a vibrant and inspiring self-care lifestyle, that's how!

Meet Dr. Sheryl Barnes. At 67, this exuberant Reinvention Rebel has navigated challenges and transformed her life, infusing it with abundant joy and purpose.

Sheryl's latest reinvention started when she heard fellow Reinvention Rebel Sharon Chappelle interviewed on the podcast. (Sharon became a certified yoga instructor in her 60s and reimagined retirement by moving from the US to Spain).

This helped ignite Sheryl's own reinvention journey, completing a certification in holy yoga. But that was just the beginning. She shares deep wisdom about how she's blossomed in her 60s and embraced self-care as a lifestyle (not just a trip to the spa) in multiple ways.

I love what Sheryl shares about:

✅ Why creating a self-care lifestyle is so important
✅ How we can be more intentional in our lives
✅ Why we have to prioritize ourselves to help others
✅ How we can find micro-joy in the midst of challenges
✅ Why multitasking works against us and our well being

And so much insightful wisdom!

You know what else is cool? Sheryl's reinvention extends beyond herself - she is helping other women to blossom too, in the most joyful ways. 

Self-care is truly self-love. If you're ready for a dose of inspiration to help you see new possibilities for your life you will love this episode!

Connect with Sheryl:

Website: sherylbarnes.com
Instagram: @drbarnes
LinkedIn: Dr. Sheryl L. W.  Barnes

Mentioned in this episode:

Ready for less stress and more energy? Go to https://www.magicmind.co/rebels and get 40% off your subscription for the next 10 days with my code REBELS20 or 20% off your first one-time purchase.

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Thanks for joining me, let's reinvent and get inspired together!

Let's connect:
Instagram: @reinventionrebels
Twitter: @rebelsreinvent
Facebook: @ReinventionRebels

Sheryl: I use the term micro joy. I don't know if it's a real term, but I use it because sometimes people think that they will be happy or happier when something really huge happens. I really think one of the secrets to self-care and living one's best life is to look for and to cultivate joy in a number of different sizes.

Wendy: Welcome to Reinvention Rebels, stories of brave and unapologetic women, 50 to 90 years young, who have boldly reimagined life on their own terms to find new purpose and possibilities. I'm your host, Wendy Battles. Ready for a dose of inspiration? Let's get to it.

Hello, amazing reinvention rebels. Welcome to another episode of the podcast. I'm so excited you're here. I'm so glad you are listening in to today's episode because my friend Sheryl is amazing. She is bursting with joy and has so many amazing nuggets to share about her reinvention rebel journey and how she is blossoming in her 60s. More to come on that in just a moment. I got to ask you, did you check out last week's episode about the idea that Reinvention is an Inside Job, all about what's on the inside and how we can get quiet and allow that to bubble up, how we can use that wisdom to help guide our reinvention path?

I don't know about you, but in the past, I've tried hard sometimes. I've tried to make things happen. I'm trying to control things, to get the answers I was seeking. But it doesn't really work like that. It's really about when we let go when we have an open mind when we believe and have faith that we have the answers. They're not always apparent. They don't just show up on demand. When we create the space, the quiet we get, still, those ideas will bubble up naturally, often when we least expect it. And I talked a lot about that. Some questions you can begin to ask yourself if you didn't have a chance to listen yet, I encourage you to do so. I'm linking to it in the show notes, but some great information to inspire you on your reinvention path. Let's get to this fantastic conversation with the very amazing Sheryl Barnes.

Let me introduce this Reinvention Rebel.

[Reinvention Rebels theme]

You are in for such a treat today. Dr. Sheryl Barnes exudes joy and helps others to heal and find joy within. This 68-year young Reinvention Rebel has reinvented herself many times over the course of her lifetime as we'll talk about today. When you meet her and see her smile, you'll know just what I mean, her joy is contagious, and I don't know about you, but I don't think we can ever have too much joy. As a coach, consultant, trainer, minister, and healer, she helps people find their true north, the path back to themselves, and she's super smart. She has earned five academic degrees, a BA in psychology, an MA in education, two PhDs, one in education, one in philosophy, and a Doctor of Ministry in theology. She has taught educational psychology, philosophy, ethics, bioethics, and theology at the college level.

She is an ordained minister and national award-winning author of two books, 10 GIFTS to Give Yourself - The Journey Back to You! and Discipleship in the Age of Distraction. She's also the recipient of numerous business, civic, and community awards. Most importantly of all of this, she helps women like ourselves to be their best selves and shine their brightest in the coolest most innovative ways. Sheryl Barnes, welcome to the Reinvention Rebels guest chair.

Sheryl: Thank you, Wendy. Thank you so much for this amazing invitation. I'm excited to be on this show with you today.

Wendy: I am excited, too and I want to give our amazing audience a little backstory to get into our conversation. Somehow, I'm not even sure how, Sheryl, I met you via LinkedIn and we connected.

Sheryl: Yes.

Wendy: Before, we got connected on Instagram and Facebook and I'd only communicated with you online. One day this summer, we were in Stop & Shop, our local grocery store. [Sheryl laughs] It was on a Saturday. I'm doing my grocery shopping, no makeup, on jeans, whatever. You came up to me and you're like, are you Wendy?

[laughter]

Wendy: This is so fun. I loved it. It was one of those joyful moments. I talked about how you exude joy. It was such a joyful moment to meet you in person.

Sheryl: Yes. I totally agree. In fact, I think I shared with you that I had passed you in one of the aisles, and I'm like, "Oh, my gosh, that's her. I freaked out, like star-struck and couldn't remember your name." And so, I'm like, "In awe, turned the corner and then I'm walking towards you. I still couldn't remember your name right away." I'm like, "You're that podcaster."

[laughter]

That was just like a pure joy moment where I couldn't even think. It was such a blessing to meet you in person. We had a great conversation in that aisle and it led us to this.

Wendy: It led us to this. I always feel like things happen for a reason that you meet people when you need to meet them or see them. That was just one of those moments. I said, "Oh, I have to have Sheryl on to talk about her reinvention journey. One of the things I remember you saying via either Instagram or LinkedIn is that you had been listening to the podcast and you heard someone's story and that inspired part of your Reinvention Rebel journey. I'd really love to start our conversation with talking about that, about how listening to that episode ignited your Reinvention Rebel journey. Can you tell me a little bit how that unfolded?

Sheryl: Absolutely. And I apologize I don't remember her name, but she was from Connecticut, and she was a yoga instructor, and she had taken up her yoga practice and relocated to another part of the world.

Wendy: Sharing.

Sheryl: I think Spain.

Wendy: Yes. That's [crosstalk]. You got it.

Sheryl: Oh, my gosh. I just listened, and I was so moved by, I want to say, her courage. It felt like bravery for her to move into something authentic. It just stayed with me because I had always enjoyed yoga, never practiced formally, hadn't taken a class in years and years, but would practice my version of it for health reasons for really good results. I just kind of kept my back loose and limber and it was always peaceful. Seeing her podcast led me to watch other ones that you had and just was blessed by each one and knew that what you were sharing with me and with other women and possibly even men as well, but it resonated so deeply about the importance of us standing in our own truth and knowing maybe not always necessarily even dissatisfied, although sometimes that too. Even in, just say, our life is going along, maybe okay.

There's a tinge of something where you want more or you want different. Your podcast, whenever I did listen in, always gave me like a spark of inspiration to stand in my own truth. Nobody around, nobody cosigning. For me to say, are you sure you're doing all that you want to do? Are you connecting the pieces of your own joy and the decisions that I was making? How is that working for you? Is it taking you to a deeper and more authentic place or not?

Wendy: I love that. The episodes really help you tune into your own spirit, your own authenticity. What is it that Sheryl needs? What will light you up because you went on if I'm not mistaken, Sheryl, to then get a yoga certification?

Sheryl: Yes, I did. It led me to certification in Holy Yoga. That was something that I wanted because it allowed me to fuse or to mesh my spiritual beliefs with a yoga practice. From there, I realized because there's so many different kinds of yoga, that I was drawn particularly to restorative yoga.

Wendy: I love restorative yoga, too. Oh, my gosh. It's just, I don't know. It just--[crosstalk] 

Sheryl: Peaceful. [laughs]

Wendy: So peaceful.

Sheryl: People healing, calming, all of that. That led me to just think more about healing as more of a peaceful experience, just even if, say, a person is on medication or under some kind of therapeutic care that yoga for me was such a compliment whether or not you were diagnosed with anything just as a way of being. Because yoga means yoke and I saw the benefit of yoking my movements with my breath, that in and of itself to just slow things down and pay attention to how you're moving through spaces, physical spaces, psychological spaces, emotional spaces, and so it's an anti-rush methodology that I just think is good for anybody, any age, any issue.

Wendy: It does feel that way and it feels like we live in this crazy over-the-top world. I know we had the pandemic that kind of calmed us all down to some degree, but it feels like things are kind of ramping up again and we're out and about more. Why do you think it's so important for us to get more tuned in and get more quiet?

Sheryl: Such a good question. Since we've talked, I've gone on and explored some other things. Essential oils which I'm certified in and most recently sound healing. The only reason why I mentioned the sound healing is that one of the things that I learned was about the importance of vibrations and frequencies and say if you're angry all the time and you're screaming at others, drivers and you're kicking the dog, heaven forbid-

[laughter]

Sheryl: -or your spouse or you're mad because they left the pickles off your drive-through order. That vibration of anger or despair or even fear is not good for your body and so it couldn't be good for your soul. I think that the calmness that comes with yoga or meditation or even if you don't give it a formal name, if you just sit for a few minutes at the beginning of the day to think about what you're grateful for and/or at the end of the day to just pause and calmly reflect on what you learned, what you survived, what you got to experience that calmness is an energy that is good for us. It's good for your pets, it's good for the people that are around you, it's good for you. So, we can't sustain that fight or flight mode. Most people have heard of that where you'll either lift a three- or four-ton vehicle off. That's good if we can do that, but we're never meant to live in that level of I'm either running or I'm fighting. Some people have normalized that and called its ambition and I respectfully disagree.

Wendy: Yeah, I totally hear you about that. How we can take some of these things and tune in and get more quiet and try to be present with ourselves. I think it's so important in this world in which we're often, especially women, dealing with so many different things, so many different demands. I was thinking about that recently as my mom is aging and needs more support and I've been spending a lot of time caring for her, which I'm so happy to do, but it also means that we have to practice more self-care.

Sheryl: Absolutely.

Wendy: So many of the things you're talking about that you have learned for yourself as you reinvented yourself are about your own self-care, your own needs. I can see how all of those tools, yoga and sound healing, managing our emotions, the essential oils to help support our emotional health, how all of those things can be tools that any of us can use as we think about more self-care, especially as we age.

Sheryl: Yes.

Wendy: I think that it's so important to do that or what's something you would suggest that women could do who are "Yeah, I'm thinking about maybe I want to reinvent myself. I'm not sure where to start, but I love this idea of self-care that you talk about so beautifully." How can a woman ease into this self-care that perhaps they have not been doing as they'd like to, but now they're like, I'm listening to Sheryl, I hear her talking about self-care? How can I get started? What would you say?

Sheryl: Actually, that is often the question that my clients because I am a life coach that they'll approach me with. Sometimes it's a major change in their life. Their children have moved out of the home or they have adult children or they have aging parents, any number of things. Careers changing, facing retirement, facing new opportunities. They ask me how can they take better care of themselves. First of all, I'm always a little curious as to us having a definition where I can honor what they mean when they say self-care because I've actually seen some pushback in social media that is narcissistic and I'm like, "Whoa, not what I'm talking about. I'm not talking about overindulgence at the expense of someone else." So, as it turns out, I do start with what does that mean to them? Many of the overwhelming majority of my clients have been women of faith, of some kind of faith.

We'll make our way around to the idea of self-care as being stewardship, of taking spiritual care of something that God is entrusted to you, your body, your creativity, your thoughts, your mind, your heart. Stewardship covers so many things and it also includes your money for the people who always wanted to know if you can let them hold some of your money and you know they're not going to pay you back. I don't let people hold money if I'm going to give it to you. If you need it, I'm going to give it to you.

Wendy: Right.

Sheryl: I don't loan money because it's crazy. But even that's stewardship. I will share with you what I can, but I cannot, perhaps in wisdom on my part, share my mortgage payment. I might be able to help you find a resource if I've gone beyond what I have. For me, self-care is rooted in spiritual stewardship and taking good care. I think we talked at one time about the analogy of if you're on an airplane and something happens, put your own oxygen mask on first. My son is an adult, but if this had occurred when he was little and say I had a couple of his friends and I was taking him to Disney World and something happened on the plane. You can be sure that my concern for them is going to involve me putting on my oxygen mask first before I try to help them. If a woman says, "Where do I start?" We're kind of in agreement with some kind of a definition of it being a spiritual and divine responsibility, then I usually will have them do something like write or draw because sometimes linear thinking can get in the way, but make a list, what are the things that are on your plate?

I have literally used paper plates where they take several small sheets of paper, write down everything they're responsible for, crumple it up, put it on a plate. [Wendy laughs] Right, after a while is a paper all over the floor. [laughs] We might start with what's important, what can you take off of your plate? Or what's important? How are you managing that? So, yes, I can be available to my best friends, absolutely. But not 24 hours a day, absolutely not. Sometimes it's not that you want to get rid of a relationship. It might be you need to renegotiate and review boundaries. I know I'm saying a lot because it really is so unique for each woman, which is why I love life coaching. The answers are always "Listen to me." They are always inside of the person. As they speak, I can hear the answers and I'll write them down or take notes or repeat them back, and they'll either laugh or go "Ah" or cry or any combination thereof. The answers are always inside of you.

Wendy: It is so funny you should say that because my last episode was called "Reinvention is an Inside Job." It was exactly what you're saying that we are wise. We have these answers within and I believe that when we do the things that you're talking about, in whatever way that manifests for us, when we practice more self-care, whether it's journaling. drawing, yoga, sound healing, or tai chi, many other things when we can begin to get more quiet, when we can tap into ourselves, that's when that wisdom bubbles up. Whether we call it God, the universe, what have you, that inherent wisdom that's there bubbles up. We can hear it because so much we're so often we are running around doing for others. Yes, it's going to be of service to others, but what about being of service to ourselves? Because that's what you're truly saying, right? That, when we are of service to ourselves, often in this spiritual way, we can unleash this clarity and wisdom from within.

Sheryl: We have more to give to others but it's not only that. We have a different quality of life. If this makes any sense at all, we have more to give to ourselves. We have more to experience. I just got off the phone with a friend of mine, and I was telling her that I'm just so happy. I said, I told her I'm a happy camper, and she's just sharing some really good things that happened and how I decorated my home and that I'm taking my time putting up my decorations. And the point is, nobody cares, but I care. My friend cares, but I care, I care and so when I take my time, I've had a good day or a crazy day, and with kind of an easy, slow, mellow intentionality, I fix myself a cup of ginger honey tea and make sure it's in a beautiful cup and sit down and put my phone on mute or put my phone to the side.

For that 30 minutes or whatever, I'm not checking to see what's on sale. I'm not checking to see who said what, I can catch up with those things later on. It's an intentionality to put some space around myself so that I can enjoy my meal or my tea or my television program or my conversation. So, I'm a big-time anti-multitasking. We're never fully in any of the tasks, and they become a dragon, they shouldn't be if you're fully present when you're washing your dishes. I got this from my big sister, my oldest sister, and she was saying, even that is sacred. I thought, yeah, right, until I thought about what she had told me. She told me this years ago. I realized when I once thought it was a drag to sweep the floor or wash dishes, I was like, but I'm sweeping the floor because they're crumbs, because I have food, and I'm washing the dishes because I just had a meal with my family because we have food and we were nourished. For some, they may sound corny, okay? When you slow down and connect what you're doing from a place of gratitude, it changes everything.

Wendy: It does change everything. Gratitude, Intentionality makes such a difference, because I certainly have had times in my life where things unfolded, but I wasn't intentional about them. I was trying to do all these different things at once and I didn't have a lot of focus. When we can practice that gratitude, when we can be more intentional that to me makes such a big difference. You also mentioned this idea of multitasking that I agree, like, multitasking, just doesn't do any good. I know sometimes we feel like, well, if I just could get more done, if I could just do these things at the same time, I understand why people think that and why it looks appealing from the outside looking in like, "Yeah, let me do that." But it really doesn't work. I truly appreciate what you said about being intentional, putting that phone down, just focusing on that one thing, and being present with that one thing, truly, fully experiencing that one thing.

Because even when I do that when I allow myself, when I give myself permission because so often as women we don't, but when I give myself permission to do just what you're talking about, I am amazed at what I hear, what I tune into. It's like a whole another world that I'm running around sometimes so busy I'm missing. Again, it goes back to this idea. We have all the answers if we just tune in.

Sheryl: All right?

Wendy: So, I love that, love that.

Sheryl: I love that you just said what you're missing. I would be the first to say that people who multitask, in many instances, they really are getting a lot of things done and it's a blur. I don't want to pretend that some things in that nothing is working for them. Sometimes something is working for them. My question is, were they present? By way of confession, I recall eating a bowl of, actually it was a bag of popcorn or potato chips. This was some years ago, right? I'm watching some shows that I like, but my mind is racing, clients and did I do that? Doing a commercial, I'll throw something in the washing machine. So, I'm eating, and I realize I'm eating mindlessly. I like the popcorn or whatever it was because I get to the bottom of the bag, and there's nothing left in the bag, and there was no one that I could blame because there was no one there with me. How do you consume a bag of something and not really remember? Do you know what I'm saying? Now I put my popcorn in a bowl because I don't want to just eat mindlessly, I want to enjoy it. I may put it in a pretty bowl. You keep [crosstalk]

Wendy: Oh, yes, I know, you love it. Now you want me to come to your house, girl, I have got to come here because it sounds amazing.

Sheryl: Open invitation, open invitation. And I mean that. I'll follow up with you on that. It's like, "Oh, my gosh, I'm intentionally eating this," really yummy popcorn Chicka Boom I think it is-

Wendy: I love that.

Sheryl: - [unintelligible [00:27:36] yum #yum.

Wendy: I can't wait.

Sheryl: Right. And I'm aware that I'm eating it. When I'm done with the bowl, I'm not just eating until the bag is empty. I remember drinking my coffee with the hazelnut creamer, which I like, I remember my breakfast and all of those wonderful gifts that we have. Taste buds, our olfactory system, which is how we smell, everything that we have, tactile, kinesthetic, all of our senses, those are gifts from God. I have friends who got COVID and it took a while for their sense of taste to come back. It's like we take it for granted, we gulp it down it, savor it, slow it down, and be aware that you can smell that, you can taste that, you can feel the warm water when you take a shower and your life is different.

You can still get things done. Every day is not going to be identical. I got that. I'm cool with that. Be more mindful to eat your food and be present when you eat or when you're on vacation. Feel the weather, see the sights instead of trying to take 5 billion pictures to share with folk back home. I'm glad you're there, but I'm hoping that you'll actually be there. If you could be there, I'm good. I'm happy for you but please be there. We're not always present in our own lives.

Wendy: It is so true. We are not always present. It reminds me as I'm having this conversation with Sheryl that so much of what we're talking about for me is about me getting into a state of flow. One of the things that's helped me do that recently is this really cool product I discovered called Magic Mind. Magic Mind is this tiny little green elixir that I take every day with my coffee. It helps me get into that flow state because I'm the kind of person that I can get really stressed out and anxious. It's got adaptogens like ashwagandha to help me destress and it's got matcha, which is also great for destressing. It's a great way for me to get more calm, to be more in that flow state, to do this amazing work that I'm doing. I'll just mention that there's a great offer available right now. You can get 40% off a subscription. You could also get 20% off if you just want to order it, but all the details are in the show notes because I've had such great results, I'd love for you to check it out, too.

Sheryl: Okay, I will take a look. Thank you for saying that because sometimes people will order a product, use it once, and not use it. Sometimes you've got the best tea or the best product something that you shared. Now you've got to commit to treating yourself to that on a regular basis. Now we're talking self-care as a lifestyle, and that's what I'm advocating for. I've asked people, do you have a diffuser for their essential oils? They're like, "Let me see if I can find it." Or do you have a yoga mat or do you have good music on your cell phone? They do, but they don't use it.

Wendy: Right, they don't use it.

Sheryl: I love the word intentionality. If you need to write this on your to-do list or put on a post note and stick it on the bathroom mirror. Today I will enjoy [laughs] my tea or my this, or my that, or my best robe. We have to actually practice doing those things and be patient because it takes a while before it has become a habit. It takes patience with ourselves.

Wendy: It really does. I think we have to not give up on ourselves. We have to remember that sometimes we are doing everything and things are working, but we fall off the wagon, which happens to me, and instead of beating ourselves up and saying, I can't believe I let this happen, it's like, "Okay, sometimes there are obstacles in our journey." Same thing in our reinvention. When we're reinventing ourselves, we go through ups and downs and we're making good progress, and then something happens and there's an obstacle in the way. Well, we have to just remember, no matter the circumstances, we just have to keep going and trust that we can navigate around whatever those things are in our path.

Sheryl: Even expect that. If your child is sick, if COVID was a disruptor, we can't even talk enough about how that threw so many people off. For some, it was restful. For others, it was a nightmare, and for others, it was a combination of both, different iterations of that. Whatever it is, if you wake up and your throat is scratchy and the last thing you want to do is a downward dog.

[laughter]

Sheryl: The last thing you want to do is whatever, wash out or sound healing, that's okay. I think that, again, in a culture that's like, "Go, go, go, go, go, push, push," than we even turn self-care into some legalistic crazy, I have to do it. No, no. We see the grace in nature and so if someone says, I just don't even have a way of conceptualizing it, sometimes I'll tell them to look out their window. It's a storm and then there's a breeze, or there're squirrels, or some of the flowers bloom this year on one bush, but not on another.

I think it helps us to remember it is not a brand new, by the book, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Robotron-automated, [laughs] crazy new thing that's anti of what we're talking about, self-care, it cannot be rigid like that. That's not who human beings are or nature. A little grace goes a long way for ourselves and of course for others. Now we're talking about extending grace to yourself and receiving grace that every day is not going to be identical and that's okay.

Wendy: Yeah, exactly. I love this idea of grace and how we can extend it to ourselves. A couple of weeks ago, I did an episode about gratitude and grace. Two topics we just talked about and why that is so important to offer that to ourselves, especially as we're reinventing. But going through anything in life. We just are so hard on ourselves. I love what you just said about the gratitude, about the grace, and about the self-care as a lifestyle. I heard you say self-care is a lifestyle, and that is such a great way to capsulize this idea that I'm not just doing it for right now. I'm not going to just take a hot bath tonight and then not do anything for weeks. I'm integrating this into my life as something that's important, something I'm going to keep doing, something that can help me transform in new ways.

Sheryl: Absolutely, yes. You keep being your best self over time. I want to say, like, you radiate that, people can feel your energy and that's one of the reasons why I'm just so inspired by you before we met in person. Your voice is calming, voice is sound. So, I won't go deep with the physics of it because I would like to.

Wendy: [laughs] I know you could.

Sheryl: [crosstalk] That's just a personal joy, all things quantum, but a soothing voice, a soothing movement, which is why I adore tai chi. Yoga and tai chi are very similar, except in tai chi, it's movement, it's just movement. Tai chi is harder for that reason. Whereas yoga is usually you hold a position and tai chi, you're moving. So, when I met you, you're like walking podcasting tai chi. [laughs] It's your voice. It's not just a studio voice, it's who you are.

Wendy: Yeah, thank you.

Sheryl: Whatever work you feel you haven't done; you've done this work and that's what you bless others with. I am so glad I passed across.

Wendy: Me too. I am grateful talking about gratitude. I'm so grateful for that. So, Sheryl, thank you for those kind words. I truly appreciate that because I do feel like I'm living on purpose for the first time. I think that when we are doing what we are meant to do, whatever that is, it could be anything we all have that thing, but when we do that, we naturally exude joy. One of the things that you talked to me about in the grocery store was this idea of micro joy. I would love for you to share with all of us this idea of joy and why joy is so important, especially as we are on this path of reinvention.

Sheryl: I use the term micro joy. I don't know if it's a real term, but I use it because sometimes people think that they will be happy or happier when something really huge happens. I really think one of the secrets to self-care and living one's best life is to look for and to cultivate joy in a number of different sizes. So clearly, we're talking metaphorically. Finding micro joy in running into someone in the grocery store, or I love to read, and sometimes I have three or four books that I'm reading at the same time and there have been times when I beat myself up where you should have read some huge book. It's like, yeah, that's not going to happen.

[laughter]

Sheryl: The micro-joy will be after I've cleaned the kitchen, I'm going to sit down and I'm going to read for whatever, 30 minutes or not even time. Until I'm ready to put the book down and to do that without again that rigidity of you have to do this or that, everything is quantifiable or measurable. When you cease from that, you can find little examples of joy throughout your day, throughout your life. I say day because it's a smaller compartment of time. Things like people have held the door for me in the grocery store or I'm sorry going into a department store. I had a couple of Uber drivers last week because they had some car problems. They were so amazing. They were so amazing that I literally wanted to cry. Short rides, 10, 15 minutes, awesome conversations. I just went over in my mind we had talked about in each case because it was micro joy for me. So sometimes it's rooted in doing something. Sometimes it's just rooted in awareness of something that's going on around you.

Sometimes it's awareness of something going on inside of you. Again, when I thought about friends of mine and some illnesses, they've survived. If you can swallow unaided, if you can see, if you can get up, if you can turn a page. This isn't necessarily correlated with age, car accidents, other things, you can be deprived of something you're taking for granted now. I think focusing in on things like that throughout the day releases micro joy. 

Wendy: I love this so much. This idea that even if we're challenged, because we all have challenging lives in different ways, whatever the things are that we're dealing with, but there is joy to be had even in the midst of challenges and that's what you're saying that we could find the littlest things to appreciate, to find joyful. I was thinking about that because I have a friend who grew up with someone who was young, maybe 30, and got ALS and just passed away recently with three small children. It reminds me of the little things when you have ALS, you stop being able to move your limbs and to talk. The kind of terrible suffering that I would never want anyone to experience. It reminds me of how there are so many things to celebrate that you said we could swallow. We take that for granted every day, even when we have a cold and you can't breathe through our nose. I can't stand when I can't breathe in my nose. And it's like, I can't believe this. It makes you really appreciate the tiniest little thing that our bodies naturally do. When you can't, all of a sudden, you're like, I can't. "Oh, no." Just leaning into the littlest of things to see joy, I see how that can help us move forward.

Sheryl: Yes. It's literally like vibrating at a healthier frequency. Anger and disappointment and complaining and comparing and it's not fair when it's really probably not all that fair for most people. Even if you think it is, everybody goes through something. Everybody has something that many times you don't know about and you will never know about. So, rather than spending that energy of comparing your precede lack vis-à-vis them, how about you do your hard work and tell the truth about [laughs] the poetry you used to write, the book you haven't finished, the dusty yoga mat you need to-

[laughter]

Sheryl: -blow off, sanitize and lay there because of restorative to yoga. You can just lay on your mat. There is a pose called corpse where you just lay there and it's actually healing. All of the energy that we can put into other ways of being that are good for us and then that affect those around us.

Wendy: Yeah, what a difference that makes. I absolutely love it. As we're beginning to wrap up, I want to ask you about some advice you might share. We have lots of women who are listening and of course men too, and all different age ranges. Obviously, I focus on women between 50 and 90, but I have so many listeners that are nowhere even near that are getting inspired from these amazing conversations with my core of Reinvention Rebels. I would love for you to share one suggestion you have when someone is trying to get started, they just have maybe this tiny little inkling, maybe they got a little quiet and they got this inkling about something, or maybe they've had a dream for a long time. Yes. But they're listening to you right now. They're like, "Mm, wow, look at what Sheryl's done. Look at how she's ignited her life. Look at how she's reinvented herself. Even thinking about yoga and becoming a yoga instructor at 68." Where there are really no limits, no boundaries if we say it so and we just decide that there aren't any. What's one piece of advice about how someone could just make a micro-movement to get started on their reinvention rebel journey?

Sheryl: I think that's a legit question given this show. I'm going to cheat and give them two suggestions. One is, listen to all of the previous podcasts [laughs] of Reinvention Rebels because if that doesn't inspire them, I'm not sure what to say. If they've listened and they really want, like, I want to do something and I don't know where to start, and let's say they don't want to call me for a complimentary consultation. Yeah, they don't want to commit to that for any reason. I would recommend, actually, a vision board. I would recommend they get a poster board. I've even done sessions before COVID where we did vision books. It's just a book that's got blank pages. I've done vision heads, which are the Styrofoam heads that you could get it [crosstalk]

Wendy: Really?

Sheryl: Yes. I've done all kinds of cool things. Another one that I've done is they sell it looks like it's a book, at a craft store, it's kind of that craft paper, but it opens up. You could do a vision treasure chest or vision board, but the concept of visioning is that those probably you've heard it with the poster board. You get some magazines, if you like you can get some stickers from the Dollar Store or whatever. You need a glue stick and a stack of magazines and cut out those words, those images, and those pictures that inspire you or move your heart in some kind of way. Some people may just say, I want a castle and a Maserati, fine, but I think a vision board is deeper. You're trying to connect with things. Some people might call it a move board, something that when you look at that picture, it is moving you. It might be because it's beautiful. You may not want a mansion, it's just the well-manicured lawn or the order, how orderly somebody's cabinet is, or how beautiful a musical instrument is.

I don't play a musical instrument and I'm always drawn to cellos and baby grand pianos. They are so beautiful to me, but I'm sensitive to that. If a woman would gift herself or man because I've done this with men as well, just cutting out images and pictures and words and adding, they want sparkles, some people do that, putting it up somewhere where you can see it on a regular basis in your office or your bedroom and add to it if you want to add to it that is a good place to start because what's inside of you is going to come out and you pick those images and words for a reason.

Wendy: I love that. That is such a beautiful, simple way to get started, yet very powerful and impactful. As someone who has done lots of different vision boards in the past, I find it to be such a wonderful tool to ignite, to spark, to see new possibilities, to lean into that inkling you might have, great advice, Sheryl, great advice.

Sheryl: It's the wrong way to do it. No one can judge you. You have too few words or you have too many. There is no wrong way to do it and I love that. The pressure is off of you. Just enjoy it.

Wendy: Yeah. I think it's such a great fun thing to do, either for yourself or with girlfriends or whomever to create that. I love it because I've done it before in groups and it was so much fun and it was the energy feeding off of each other as we found things and be like, "Oh my God, I have this." I'm like, "Where did you find that?" That kind of thing? People cut things out and leave them and then you're like, "Oh, that's just what I needed."

Sheryl: Wendy, I've done it in groups where we were least spaced and for people just to hold their board up and report out, women wept as they shared why they put that up there and what they were going through and then it made us cry. And some of it was fun, it was laughter. It felt like a healing, safe experience. That's why I recommend it. Fun with friends, fun alone. Children can do it with you. You can't do this wrong.

Wendy: You can't go wrong. I love that. You cannot go wrong. I want to ask you one last question, which is thinking about your amazing life over 68 years, all the different things that you've done, and especially thinking about reinventing yourself. If you had to give your reinvention, maybe we'll say the most recent one because I know you've reinvented yourself in many different ways, [Sheryl chuckles] many different times, like most of us over the course of a lifetime. Thinking more recently about what we're talking about today, how you reinvented yourself if you had to give that a theme, your reinvention, what would it be?

Sheryl: Well, I'm 67, and so on my next birthday, I'm going to be 68. But it's relevant. I say my theme would be blossoming. One of the subtitles I'm using in my ROYAL REFRESHER podcast is heal and bloom. It's something about blooms and blossoms, the connection to nature that something starts as a seed, and then over time if it's watered and nurtured and it's in the right soil and all of the things that you can think about, rain is necessary. We want to run from those kinds of things. If there is no rain, there will not be a plant. I think what I have done over the years is blossomed, then been pruned sometimes against my will.

[laughter]

Sheryl: Been stepped on a few times, it looked kind of pitiful, but the roots were there, and so that blooming and blossoming in different seasons and in response to different trials and setbacks and even good things.

I'm just blossoming in another way in this season of my life. It's deeper into the wellness, but I think that's always kind of the direction that I've moved in. It would have to be for me reinventing myself is giving myself permission to blossom over and over and over again.

Wendy: I love the imagery of blossoming and the recurrence of it like a perennial.

Sheryl: Yeah.

Wendy: You come back and you have those deep roots that you mentioned. That is such a beautiful way to express that.

Sheryl: Thank you.

Wendy: Of course, I know that those that are listening, who are soaking up your inspiration, your joy, your ideas to ignite their own reinvention are thinking, how can I get in touch with Dr. Sheryl Barnes? Where can I find this amazing woman who has a podcast, who is a coach, who runs workshops, who does all kinds of extraordinary things? How can people connect with you?

Sheryl: Well, thank you. Probably, like everyone else, the easiest way is through social media. If you google Sheryl White Barnes, I'll come up. I'm on Instagram as @drsbarnes and Facebook and LinkedIn. Sheryl White Barnes or Dr. Sheryl Barnes. And one of my website is drsherylbarnes.com, so www.drsherylbarnes.com and Sheryl's with an S.

Wendy: Wonderful. Everything that you just mentioned is in the show notes. If you thought that was so quick, I didn't get it all. Not to worry. You can easily tap and go directly to Sheryl's website, to her podcast, to her social media account so that you can connect with this amazing woman. Sheryl Barnes, I cannot thank you enough for gracing me with your presence today. What a gift! Thank you, dear friend.

Sheryl: Thank you, Wendy. I'm going to hold you to coming over. We'll meet at BLOOM on one of our outings and another outing. You got to come over and we got to have some tea and talk some more. I appreciate you and thank you for all that you do for women like me. Thank you so much.

Wendy: Thank you. It is a mutual admiration club and I cannot wait [Sheryl laughs] to get together with you and talk in much more detail. So, thank you.

[music]

Sheryl: Okay.

Wendy: I hope that you enjoyed today's episode with the amazing Dr. Sheryl Barnes. I hope you soaked up her abundant wisdom about simple things we can do to ignite our reinvention journey and how we can use self-care and joy and blossoming as catalysts for growth and new possibilities. I loved what she had to share and I hope you did too. I cannot wait to see you here next week for another episode of the Reinvention Rebels podcast. Until that time, keep shining your light. The world needs you and all that you have to offer. See you soon.

Hey, rebel if this episode inspired you to think about what's possible in your life, I'll share a little secret. Any of us can reinvent ourselves no matter where we are in our lives, any age, any stage. We just have to decide to get started. Here's a super simple way for you to get going with your reinvention dreams. Download my audio, five questions to spark your curiosity and inspire your reinvention journey. I share five key questions that will spur your thinking, help you uncover your dreams, and motivate you to take action. Because if not now, when? Details in the show notes. Let's get inspired together.

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