Courage to be Curious with Adina Tovell

The Magic of Self Love

August 25, 2021 Adina Tovell, Amy Steindler, Rena Rachar Episode 156
Courage to be Curious with Adina Tovell
The Magic of Self Love
Show Notes Transcript

What actually happens when you love yourself and how do you get there?

Download the Journey to Selflove Guide here --

Self-love is all the rage now but what does that actually mean? How do you know what it feels like? And how do you get there? In this week’s ‘not to miss’ episode with Amy Steindler and Rena Rachar, experience some incredibly poignant, funny, and drop-the-mic moments as we break it all down. And stay tuned for our bonus Surprise Questions at the end when we all get really personal and revealing!

So let's think of this podcast is almost a safety net that we want to say, Okay, take our experiences that we're going to share with you about being in those places of uncertainty or hanging in the middle as things were shifting as your guidance for how that might work for you, wherever you are in your life and whatever perspective might be holding you back in some way or another. Hi, this is Adina here with this week's episode of courage to be curious with Adina Tovell. This month in August, we have been talking about perspective, in each of the podcasts. Up until this point, we've been talking about perspective in the context of our life and our relationships and our leadership. And then in this final episode of the month, we always have a guest on and a guest who's going to kind of further develop this topic for us. And I am so excited that we have today with us, Rena Rachar, right. Did I get that right? You did. Good. Okay, Rena, HR HR. And then we also have Amy Steindler back with us. As I shared with you last month, she is going to be a regular on our podcast, she is funny, she is witty, she is so incredibly intensely curious that she and I are now going to be doing a lot of riffing off with one in each with of each other here on the podcast. So we're going to be doing that. But we're really excited to have Reena on this month because she as I understand it is also very funny. So be you know, looking out for your great one liners, you'll expect to last episode, no pressure, no pressure at all, no pressure, not right. As we talk about perspective, and we are going to delve more deeply this month in the love and relationship context, and looking at perspective and how that affects us in the context of relationship. And so that is going to be our theme here. There are a few things that all of us have in common here. Well, they're funnier than me. So they get to share that, you know, I do my best. But we all are have this context of educator. And so you'll hear that come through in our voices, you have three women who have really gone through pretty intensive transitions in their life and finding their voice in powerful ways and transitioning from one version of themselves into another version of themselves where their voices start to come through much more powerfully. And you'll hear a lot about our transitions and how that happened and some of the things that impacted that. And then we also have a connection in terms of divorce. So both Rena and I have been through divorces of our own, Amy is the child of divorce. And one of the things I've talked a lot about, I spent a number of years and my practice as a divorce coach, really helping to reframe take on a new perspective around divorce, you know, culturally, we honor and we value marriages and strong marriages that stay together. And I want to say we all hear value strong marriages. And when marriages make sense to stay together for those 5060 years, like my parents did, it's a beautiful thing. But we have this stigma that we tend to put like there's a sense of failure. And we want to challenge that perspective here today. And just open up and let us see what happens when we think about it and look at it through a new lens. So whether that is a relevant topic to you, or you are just curious about the nature of changes in relationships and what that might mean for you. Keep watching, because we have a lot to share. So Amy, I am so excited that you are back with us today. Just give our people a couple more minutes of intro on us since you are going to be a regular here on courage to be curious. And you know, let them know how excited you are to be here.

Well, I am excited, delighted and of course honored to be with you Edina. I am. I call my self a perspective shifter, a professional perspective shifter because life coach sounds kind of squishy. And you know, I think my background in emotional intelligence is what I'm spending a lot of time you know, thinking about talking about teaching coaching. I get into these conversations and these introductions and I have no idea what to say about myself. So I'm going to stop there. Just want to welcome all the listeners and viewers and it's gonna be a fun ride here, especially with my friend and colleague Rita Rachel.

All right, so Rena tossing the ball over the net to you and give people a little sense of who you are and what makes you excited to be talking about perspective in the context of curiosity.

Thank you for having me. I'm so delighted to be here with both of you and perspective taking a different perspective has really I would say probably changed almost everything big in my life. It's given me permission to do things it has given me courage to stay the course. And it's given me freedom to look at life in a new way. And I'll tell some of those stories as we move on. And I, I'm an emotional intelligence intelligence coach up here in Edmonton, Alberta, and been practicing here for a number of years, I met Amy through the Martha Beck Institute, where we studied together. And it was really through Martha Beck's work, in fact that I gave myself permission to do what I wanted to do anyways, and then realized, oh, life coaching is, is a thing. And so I followed her path there. And like you, I practiced divorce coaching for a while, I mean, I still do, I got certified through the College of divorce coaches to lend a hand in that area. My divorce is a big part of my story, my emancipation from my very awful marriage that coincided a little bit with really redefining my faith practice, which was why it was hard to leave in the first place. So that divorce blew up my life in in such a messy, awful, beautiful, freeing way. So that was, that was my big entrance into coaching. And over the years, emotions and the understanding of them have risen to the top No matter if I'm coaching a divorcee or someone going through career change. So that's why emotional intelligence is now part of what I call myself. Awesome. Thank you, Amy, or Thank you, Reena. And I can't

wait to delve into this with you. And, you know, something I don't think I've ever told you, Amy. But one of the first life coaches I ever met, when I started to have a perception that this was a thing was a Martha Beck life coach, I actually met her I was injured. And so I was sitting in the very front row of an airplane because I just had surgery on my knee. And I had crutches and all of that. And the stewardess was just or the, the flight attendant was just so incredible, like the way she connected, you could feel something really probably different. And I started to talk with her. And it came out really quickly that she had gone through the Martha Beck program. And it was this thing, the aura, the aspect, the wave connection was just so beautiful. And so ever since then, when people ask me, so of course, I promote my own coach training program through AIPAC, the Institute for professional excellence and coaching, which I think was wonderful. They always say, oh, America back, oh, there is something about Martha that the Martha Beck program that I haven't experienced personally going through the program, but the people that you meet coming out of it, just like the two of you really are extraordinary.

Yeah, I'm glad to hear you say that the program really is extraordinary. And, you know, exceeded my expectations all the way through. And it's lovely to hear that because I hear that a lot people do. Oh, yeah, I've met other motor coaches are really awesome. So it's a good program.

Yes. So anybody out there who's been thinking about it, you know, talk to us, because we have a lot to share on the wonderful things that can happen and going through a coach training program. But you're here today to hear us talk about some about perspective and perspective in the context of relationship. But let's start out with talking about this notion of perspective. And I am curious all the time, in fact, I've been writing a lot about this is that we are as humans kind of uniquely situated where we can actually entertain different perspectives and even kind of hold different perspectives at the same time, or be able to look for different perspectives. But we also find that challenging, like we can get really kind of attached to a single perspective, even though we have this broader capacity. And so I'm gonna throw this question out there of what do you think makes it challenging for us, even though we have this capability to shift from kind of a perspective we've gotten really attached to, to being open and broader to looking through other lenses or seeing things in other ways? What makes this so difficult? So let me start with Rena, you want to take that on first?

For me, the way I look at that is me perspective is a way of looking at things. And that is connected to the way we think about things. And for me that that's where it was for me I in my times that I've been most stuck, it's because I've been adhered to a thought of how I should do something, and how I see this thing fitting into that setting. So that I mean, I think we're conditioned to adopt thoughts and perspectives. And then it's the courage of, well, first of all, is there another way and if so, what do I need to do to get there? So for me, that's my experience is it's attached to an idea of something. I should do what Britney brown would call a story, right? We're telling ourselves stories. And that to me is connected with how I see something. Thank you and Amy, what are you thinking about? What's coming to mind? What makes it difficult for us? So it's sometimes open up?

Yeah, I think I think we're a product of our experience Rena mentioned the word conditioning, you know, in a lot of ways, we end up getting conditioned against ourselves, because we're trying to please a parent or please a teacher or, you know, be someone that we're not because we admire this other person. So we'd really rather be them, we're trying to be some sort of part of it as conditioning absolutely has to do with our experience, how we experience the world. And that has to do again with our family of origin and how we're brought up. So you know, our experience, directs how we see the world. And what happens is we end up with a whole list of unconscious biases, right? So we are living with confirmation bias. So our perspective is going to be let me look for the evidence that supports the current perspective that I have. That's more common than what you do for a living Edina, which is let me look for the evidence that challenges my current perspective, so I can learn and grow. And, you know, this is also the basis of Adam Brandt's new book. And I've been talking about this endlessly because it was really a powerful book, his book called think again. So those are the things that come up for me, when I think about, you know, how we get stuck in a perspective, it's conditioning, it's experience, it's unconscious bias, there's probably a whole lot of other things that the neuroscientists could tell us. But that that's what comes up for me.

As both of you were talking, I got this visual image of a trapeze artist, right, and you're swinging and you're holding on to one bar of the trapeze. And then they're supposed to grab hold of the other one, right. But in order to grab hold of the second one, you actually have to let go of the first you can't be holding on to both at the same time. But the space in the middle, when you're not holding on to either, and you have nothing solid to grab onto is scary, right? I mean, if we look at it, if we go to the circus, and we watch that part, that's the scary part of the Act, right is when they're in the middle and suspension. And I sometimes think about it that way that if I've developed a perspective on something, and then it gets challenged, or there's something that comes up, I almost am in this place of suspension, until I feel solidly grounded and some other way or I can see how it can benefit me. I think that maybe adds to what makes it scary why we don't always shift so easily.

I think that's true that sort of hanging out in the middle place. You know, we don't like to be sitting with the unknown. We don't we like to have a solid answer. We like to know things, you know, realize that a lot of conversations about this, you don't want to know what's going to happen. And being in the place of fear. We're not used to that it takes a tremendous amount of courage. So again, we come back to a deal of the work you're doing in terms of, you know, what kind of courage does it take to be curious enough to change your perspective?

Yeah, so I think that really sets the context for what we're going to start to dive into now is in sharing pieces of our own stories, which is what we're going to do today is as lending a support, right, because I think it is hard, it's hard to move off of the way we've been thinking about something the way we've been seeing it, and we not once support. So if you're on that trapeze, maybe putting a safety net underneath would make it a little bit easier to practice and things like that. So let's think of this podcast is almost a safety net, that we want to say okay, take our experiences that we're going to share with you about being in those places of uncertainty or hanging in the middle as things were shifting as your guidance for how that might work for you, wherever you are in your life and whatever perspective might be holding you back in some way or another. So with that Reena, I would love to turn to you now and have you share a little bit about your personal story. And the role that perspective played both and how things were and maybe why you stayed or how you got stuck or remained where you were and what role perspective played in shifting

for you. Yes. So I grew up really religious and the the rule was you stay married unless there's abuse or infidelity. So I mean, for the first 10 years of my marriage, I can say the word divorce didn't even enter my mind as an option. It was it was not even there as a possibility. And so I just was staying in this thing that wasn't, wasn't good for me because I didn't know I had a choice. I didn't see any other viable way I truly didn't. And when it started to occur to me That this was an option. Whether it be through watching people or reading a book, as it started to occur to me that this was an option. I mean, it felt wrong. I remember the first day that I walked into the divorce section of the bookstore and and did this, like looked over my shoulder to see who might see me. In the divorce section. I was a former pastor, I was married to a pastor, this was not done. And I mean, I, I, yeah, it was just not done. So as I, as I began to, there was a little bit of a nudge here and there, as I saw stories of other people saw other people who had done this and their kids turned out, okay, and other religious people who had who had done it, this idea gained steam that I could do something about this, which was more painful, almost, because then I had, I had a hard choice to make. Yeah, it almost sounds like that's the part where you were in between the suspension, right? You know, that you let go of holding on to this thing. You can't do this. Yes, the possibility that there could be but you hadn't grabbed hold that you hadn't yet grabbed hold of something else. So you were in that suspension place? Absolutely. Which is thrilling to watch. It is thrilling to do. I mean, that's what makes the juicy story. So that in between stage was was quite prolonged for me was it a couple of years, and there were many things that happened and one great, one amazing thing that happened that I built on for about a dozen years I was away. I was contemplating divorce, I was away with my sister at a wedding in Mexico. And I was able to be Rena, something shifted for me where I was able to really see myself as Rena not as wife, not as mom. And that changed things for me and my sister and I were walking on the beach on the last day. And she's just sent some words to me something about I don't know if you know what, what light is in you, something like that. Some seemingly small words that just became an anchor for me and I, it was I was watching myself from the outside was watching her. And this shift from me to her has been hugely effective for me in so many ways to be able to look at myself instead of through my own eyeballs, but to look at the protagonists at the leading lady and see what's going on for her. And so I left that night, walked through the airport to come back home. And honestly, I felt like I was walking in my body differently. Something was shifting, and I didn't have all the language for it at that point. But I could feel myself being different inside of my own self, if that makes sense. And it might it might not make too much sense for for some listeners, but that and I went back to her I called her named her my my woman on the beach. And that would be what Martha Beck would call the essential self, the essence of who we come to the world as, versus the social self that's conditioned and that we edit ourselves to fit and to to try to belong. And so that essence of who I was I named her I personified her I looked at her I began to sing songs to her I let her speak to me I really developed truly a a relationship with this strong inner leader inside of myself that just didn't give a shit what was going on. She didn't she was walking the beach life didn't bother her untroubled here I am walking the beach walk in life shining my light and I went back to her she was my anchor, I'll tell you in the two years of hell that that came after that when I when I decided to really radically change my life and in the face of many, many obstacles. So that was the beginning of it for me.

So yes, we're definitely going to come back because I know there's more to the story that we want to unfold there just a couple things and I imagine Amy you might have some things brewing too based on what Rena just said a couple things that are coming up for me and then I'll turn it over to his in relationship to perspective when we shifting our perspective right there was this I had no idea right I don't want to do this was even an option I've been a pastor married to pastor right there we go from this place of like no idea or no concept to something happening whether it was just hearing a program differently hearing something someone said differently. Something came up with kind of like cracked open ms thinking it's like you get the tiny little crack right. And then if we allow like something can come through the crack, right, the letter cone always talks about the cracks or how the light gets in right and then how things become illuminated for us. And in that though, this is the courage to be curious part. Like I picture you walking into that bookstore and trying To go into that divorce aisle to look at those books, right as somebody who is devout in her faith, and somebody who's been a pastor's, but he's married to a pastor, somebody who has so many eyes on her, that that took an incredible amount of courage to do. And so it's both, you know, taking that courage, expanding knowledge and experience and how all of those things, if we have the courage to do it, start to help that new perspective, like start planting little seeds and start to grow root. The other thing about perspective that really stood out to me from what you said is that, instead of only having the perspective of your life, as it came through seeing it, through the eyes that you were living, you now had two perspectives, I can see the world as I'm living it, and then I can see the world as an observer of myself in it. And by adding one more perspective than what you had before. Wow, like that really stood out to me from your story. It saved me really, I

can't tell you one thing that has helped me more in my life than starting to play around with this. Not me her and looking at me, it gets some distance. And you're kinder to yourself, because you're watching your leading lady, and you're cheering for her. Yeah, it's changed everything for me.

So Amy, I'm curious, have you used this technique? How has this come up for you? Have you used the technique of watching you're having the persona that watches you, as well as the one that is, you know, the you in the action in the life? How's that played out?

Yeah, I think that's the really the core of the perspective shift is that ability to take that observer role. And, you know, I needed 10 years of therapy, and a lot of other people helping me see that helping me by observing me and teaching me how to do that. So I think that's the, that's the key when Rena said, You know, I took this perspective as an observer. And it's not necessarily a an instinctual thing to do. I mean, I've had to work out, I mean, Rena how to, you know, the sun came out. And me, I've been working out, you know, so I think that, you know, doesn't just happen necessarily like that, sometimes it takes a little longer and a few more experiences that certain my experience, you know, want to say that when we talk about the courage to do the kinds of things that read it in the courage to walk into the divorce section, the courage to carry it through. The flip side of that, is that enormously painful, and, you know, the, the the ability to sit with that and to process that and to, again, observe that, and to talk about that with other people so that we're not left alone. There's really strong emotions. I think it's something we want to mention, because I don't want to blow sunshine up anybody's skirt and say, Oh, well, you need to some courage. You need courage, and you need the ability to separate some pretty powerful emotion. I don't know, Rena, I'm gonna toss that back to you. Because you I observed you experienced that. And it's taught me so much about my own strong emotions and how to articulate those and have a sit.

Yeah, so Reena give us a sense of you know, the really hard, right, we've given the big picture. But you've now done that. And now you've left us at the point of the story where now things start to get really hard because yes, I think Amy, you're spot on. We don't want to paint this picture. Okay, you just got a little card, and then the sun comes out and suddenly like, oh, something happened. And it's fabulous. Because all three of us know that. That is not the story at all.

Marina, what happens and once we start getting the inkling of a new perspective on things what what unfolds?

Oh, well, it yes, that I came home from that trip. So I mean, of course, it had been brewing for me. I knew I wanted out, I was gathering courage. Slowly. I came home that perspective helped me know for sure. I get out. And I came home and kind of started voicing it to a few few of my people. And I'm telling you it was it was very difficult because I still had the reality to deal with. So I knew I wanted to leave I experienced some realness in a new way and said, I want more of that and I can't do that where I am. So I had this felt experience. But then I had all the reality. What about the kids? What about the parents? What about the religion? What about the all of this What about the money and it was from ice came home and stayed in my home for another I think six months or something and it was it was pretty hellish. And that's putting it lightly because I knew I wanted out but I was been staying in to make sure I was I was sure that I was ready to do this. And it was Yeah, it was you can be as bad as you think it was. It was it was not it's not fun and I I just had to gather courage and wait and sit and I Remember, I, during this period is uncomfortable in between period, we went to the local fairgrounds one day in my parrot with my daughters and my parents were with us and they bought the nice woman in the Butterfly Pavilion and they bought them these jars of caterpillars that you keep. And they as soon as they emerge, you set them free. So we had these for however long it takes for that to happen. And the caterpillars were starting to emerge and we went out so I'm still living with my husband wanting to leave not quite courageous enough, went up to the back porch to let these butterflies out and we open the jars and they did nothing. They stayed in the jar and the the affinity that I felt with these creatures, I knew the lid is off. Really that was it, the lid was off for me, I had permission I knew now. I just wasn't quite ready to fly yet. And so we we watched these glorious little creatures in for gently coax them out and, and my five year old at the time was standing at the edge of the deck holding this, holding this butterfly up on the heel of her hand. And I was behind her taking pictures. And this this little girl just said to this butterfly, come on, girl, you can go wherever you want, you can be free. And and that was another just one of those moments that I took inside. And overtime. I looked back on that. And I realized my so my biggest fear was what am I going to do to the kids by leaving their father. So that enough was painful, right? That whole thought of breaking up this home and I came to realize my my kids aren't from a broken home, they were born into one What am I going to do to now heal my home and the only way to do that was to divorce. And so that came slowly. But as I thought back to the essence again, of who my daughters were that my five and seven year old if I asked them, Do you want me to leave your dad? They're gonna say no, of course, they're gonna say no, but the essence of them. I knew it. I again, I changed my perspective, I fast forwarded to a different scene in the movie. Or I knew my kids, I knew their souls. And I knew that they would not wish for me what I was living in, I knew the essence of them would not want me to stay the little the little miles would say stay. But their souls would say come on girl. You can be free.

Wow. Wow. I mean, I when you talked about your daughter having a butterfly, right? I mean, me I'm watching I mean, are both having chills, like run all the way up our spines as you're telling that story. When you send though, you know, they're not from a broken home, they were born into one like, right, that is a super huge perspective shift. Because for many people, the biggest fear about leaving is what will I do to my kids, and they'll be from a broken home and things like that. Not always recognizing that living in a home where there isn't love or living in a home where there's arguing or living at home where there's abuse or, you know, mistrust or just not kindness also has an impact on the kids. Like we focus on one and not the other. But this perspective of they're not from a broken home, you know, they won't be from they were actually born into one. And this is a healing process, as opposed to a destructive process. Like that's a total game changer.

Yes. And I would imagine that changes the way that you as a mother, talk about it, and talk about their father, you know, because my parents divorce was the most acrimonious for rendus. Horrible, your father's an awful person. And, you know, that whole sort of, I don't even know how to describe that. Because it's so wrong. I went through like my whole life thinking that half of me was, you know, seriously flawed, because it came from this man, it was so horrible. So I think the idea that when you shift your perspective about divorce as a healing and growth mode, and you talk about that in that way with your children, that again, that changes everything, so we just throw that in as the child of divorce perspective. You know, I've watched Rena do that. And I've watched her do it well, and I've watched her struggle with it, too. I mean, the answers aren't always so clear about how to talk about things and what to say. And it's it's, yeah, it's a process of growth for everybody.

Anything I just want to say about that for listeners, because I know that I have faced this a lot with clients who are considering divorce. I'm sure you get it a lot. Rena, too, is we tend to take whatever perspective we imagine as an adult and we projected onto our children. You know that oh my gosh, they're going to have to do this. This will be hard. They're going to feel this. You know, we take our kind of adult lenses on things and we projecting on to the kids. And what I found I know with my own kids experience is that they didn't have a lot of those ideas going on in their head, you know, that wasn't my daughter, my youngest daughter was interesting, the very day that we told them, that we were going to separate and get a divorce. And, you know, there was a lot of family sort of surrounding. And I remember my mother in law, who was, you know, a therapist called and said, was checking in, and I was lying on the couch with my younger daughter, who was about 11 at the time, and she said, I don't know why everyone, you know, thinks, or why everyone thinks, you know, this is so hard, or we have to be so unhappy. I'm just glad that mommy's being who she is. And it was just like, nobody would have expected right, you know, a child just heard this news, it's something really significant is going to change. In our wildest imagination, we would mostly not attribute that that's what is going through the child's mind on that day. And he or she had like the presence to be able to verbalize it, that we were actually ironically, sitting in watching Glee, as part of, you know, we separated I just, you know, came out and we were ending our heterosexual marriage, and I was moving into a different phase of life. And she was sitting here watching the show, and her entire growing up was like, I want people to be who they are. And if mommy's not who, you know, she hasn't been living the way she really wants to be. She should be doing that. I'm happy. Why does everybody think I'm supposed to be so sad? And but it was amazing, because nobody would have said, Oh, that's on the list of perspectives I think the child would have had, yes. I want to go in and think a little bit, you know, as you said, Amy being the child of divorce, and as a child, you know, we do take in a lot of our senses as to what relationships are like and how they're supposed to be from what we grew up with at home. Right. And then Rena You and I, having been through a divorce and things like that, I'm curious how our understanding your perspectives on intimate relationships have changed. You know, what were they like, when you first got together? Or was it child, Amy or before the 10 years of therapy and things like that? And what's the notion of what intimate relationship is really about freedom now?

So we know what has happened for you. Man, a lot has happened is as Amy said, earlier, experience will inform perspective as well. And so I've had many experiences to replay all of my drama, let me tell you, oh, tear I've been lot at Amy has been here for most of it. Can I come visit you and cry for a few weeks again? So I I've learned so so much about what is mine? And what is theirs? I mean, that's been the biggest thing I think that I'm learning is, is where do I begin and you end, you know, real super boundaries. And and being willing, when I'm, every time I'm triggered, that's my business. Every time I feel some charge, that's an invitation to see what is unfinished. For me, I did not used to be that way at all. It was it was all about blame, and even just not understanding what was going on for me. So I'm getting much better at that. That's my, my, my perspective. I mean, I love Zoo cavo Gary zoo, complete the spiritual partnership, a partnership of equals, where, for the purpose of spiritual growth, right? So that's, that's how I see intimate relationships. Now this invitation to, to grow and to really, if you want to know what unfinished business just, you know, move in with someone or marry someone or start dating someone else. Exactly. What's unfinished yourself. So I very much look at it as a partnership. To get to know oneself and to grow. For you, Amy?

Yeah, you know, I think from from my experience growing up with a relationship that was, as I said, flawed, deeply flawed. I remember watching Jerry Maguire the first time and seeing that you complete me seen and I was like, wait a minute, that's wrong, right? That's all wrong. Or you don't complete me, you amplify me, You lift me up, you know, there was a way that I went through all my early relationships. I didn't get married until I was 41. Right. I was single and would have been married at the earliest moment of anyone. But fortunately, they didn't. Because I spent a lot of time trying to become whatever he wants to be, because I thought that was the answer to keeping him from leaving, right. So I saw my father leave. And you know, I was thinking, well, that must be because, you know, I wasn't what he wanted. So, you know, I took my little, you know, five to nine year old perspective with me for the next 30 years. So now it's more about what Rena said, you know, are we well met are we equals, and my, you know, prescription for a happy relationship now taking the perspective of I'm not going to find somebody who doesn't have some crazy, but doesn't have some stuff that they do that is just, you know, part of their path to healing. So for Dave and myself, it's about, can we love each other's crazy, you know, can we love the crazy not we love them not despite the crazy but with the crazy, you know, assuming that it's not coming up every day, but being able to put that into perspective and say, Okay, he's triggered, now, he's triggered. Now, I can not, I can choose not to be triggered by that. So I can just sit with that. Let him go through that process. And usually, you know, 20 minutes later, he comes back and says, you know, I'm really sorry, I'm back now. So I think that perspective, and Rena, you know, being an observer of your relationship, being observer of yourself in the relationship, and being the observer of your partner, is really helpful. So taking that observer perspective, again, instead of getting caught up and saying, Oh, my God, you know, he's mad about this thing. And it's my fault, and I got to do something to change it, I just let him be mad about it. And we sorted out later. I don't know if that made any sense. I think I might have gone on on a tangent.

And we love your tangents. And you didn't actually go on when you were spot on. But I love that, you know, what you both brought up is this idea of spiritual partnership, as opposed to this idea of partnership that's supposed to complete you. And I certainly know when I got married in my 20s. That was it, you know, it's whatever kind of things that were difficult in my life, this person was supposed to make them better, right, whatever things I didn't have, or whatever they were supposed to compensate for, which does lead down the blame game, right? If my expectation of you is that you are going to improve compensate make better these things, then anytime I come up against something that's difficult, I have to blame you for it. And when I work and look with, you know, with couples, and I look and listen to what people complain about most, it almost always comes down to that right, that this person failed to do the thing that was going to make me happy, or this person failed to do the thing that I needed them to do, regardless of whether I told them about it right. As compared to this notion of the spiritual partnership. And you both said it so beautifully, which is, if we see the purpose of the partnership, as you know, the space where I, somebody helps to reflect back where I can continue to grow. You know, how I can continue to evolve as a person and the sacredness of the partnership is that this person is willing to walk that journey with me, as opposed to fix that all. For me. That's a total game changer. Right? Yes, yeah.

I'm guessing that resonates with you, you know, to based on our recent conversations, but, you know, it brings up the idea of agency, right. We are the agents of our own feelings, it's our responsibility to see to our own wholeness. You know, you know, it's about our own agency of determining what we want to feel and then doing what we need to do to feel that way, not depending on someone else, to fill that blank for us. I mean, your partner can support you in that. I mean, they're there, they're there to help you do that. But they're not there to do that for you.

Ryan, I think you probably wanted to add on to that. So I want to give you a moment to contribute what you ever you wanted to say.

Yeah, I mean, I've so many thoughts about this. One, that's I think, relevant to is. This idea of being enough for yourself is also very important for me, it's something that it's taken me a long time to come to. So this, of course, we've been conditioned that to get together and an intimate relationship is better than single, we've been conditioned to that. And so I think we look towards that, whether we would say we might say, Oh, I don't need a relationship. They're not here to complete me. There's still this part of me that was searching for something that I didn't have yet something that my life was not quite what it could be based on what life should look like. And I was happy I've been very, there's lots of wonderful things about being single but there was still this little piece and I remember the day it shifted for me and I i think i was listening to a podcast or something and I realized I am not waiting for anyone. And I'm telling you that that was not just a sunshine through the clouds moment. That was a sunshine through the clouds moment that came from 12 years of working through the clouds. It was a lot of work of cultivating this, this internal friendship with my own life and with my own self, and with every, all these past versions of myself with the future version of myself, it's, for me, it's a very colorful, visual experience to get to know myself in my story, the story of my life. And so cultivating that deep appreciation and acceptance and just friendship with myself, has then led me to this very real truth that, Oh, no, I got it. I've got my beloved and and as cheesy as that sounds truly, that's, that's where it's, it's come from me, I found my lasting love, I worked for a lot of years to cultivate that and went to a lot of sad, scary places and looked a lot of things in the eyeballs to get to that point. So it was long and messy. And I'm still doing it. But but that realization that you know, I, to, to I take I take the to have and to hold for better and worse, richer, poorer sickness health, I I've taken my my own self, and really have cultivated that and she's, you know that she's the only one I can say with certainty is going to be with me to the end, I hope there are going to be a lot of other people around me, but I don't know that but I do know, the one, the one that is here with me right to the end, why wouldn't I want to befriend her and be aligned with her. And so all of that work has culminated in this deep abiding, anchoring truth that I am not waiting for anything. I'm here I got it. This thing that I worked hard for I got it and the joy and the peace and the strength of that perspective gets me going into an intimate relationship on a very different plane than than the one who's still looking for something to come and add something of course, the relationship will add joy, but I'm not waiting for it anymore.

I feels like a drop the mic moment, we should probably just end the podcast right there. Because you know, I could see you right? This is the pastor and you and with the passion, but and so absolutely spot on profound. And I love it. And those of you who are watching in the video that are watching Reena with her hands over her heart, just cherishing this self that she is. And I know that one of the biggest questions I get from people, because even if they get the inkling that the self love part has to come first. And then the question comes, well, how do you do that? Right? How do you do that? We're not going to go through a whole thing to answering that. But what I want to say is what I hope people are going to take away from this is that that is the essential piece, it is the journey worth going on directing your intention in that way. And you know, not to make a plug but to kind of make a plug like that is what life coaches are here to do. Right? That is essentially what we are here to do is to guide people because it is not an easy journey. There is no kind of, you know, handbook out there that says here's exactly how it goes. Because it's different for every person. Right? we're each going to have our own journey of that discovery. But there's no better journey to take right? There is nothing more worth it than that journey because that is what changes everything, no matter what doesn't feel right on the outside. When that journey when we take that journey and we come to that place of love of self, everything else is manageable in a totally beautiful way. So yes, go get yourself one of these magnificent life coaches. And you know, and this is also you know, when the courage to be curious website, we have these card decks, and one of them is love with the courage to be curious. The other one is live and one of them is lead. This is the whole purpose. It's to start that journey. How do you even know what to ask yourself? How do you even know what to pursue? Well pick up a deck of those cards, because that is exactly why they were created. If you don't know what to ask yourself, here are a set of questions you will start, then you will lead yourself to one of these amazing coaches on here or someone else. We all need guides. Amy didn't go through her journey alone. I didn't go through my journey alone. I had my therapist and my friends and my coaches and my books and you know all of those things, and Rena did too. So I just need to make that plug because what you said, if I'm a listener, I'm like, Oh

my gosh, I want what she has, right. I don't get what she has. When she's having I wonder if I could just sort of tie this up for myself in a way. When I want to hear Reno's story and I think about my own and yours that Tina I think there are some there's no Hang on. But, but there are some things you can learn to expect. And again, you know, if we're plugging life coaching, this is where you know that the experience of life coach can tell you, it can normalize what you're going through. But in Martha Beck speak, what Rena was describing was what's called the Ring of Fire. Right, you go through the Ring of Fire, once you once you make that decision, you're between the two trapeze polls, and you decided to reach for this one, then you're going to go burn off everything except what's essential, except what's true about you. And that is, again, hard work. And I know that the questions in your deck, lead you through some of that, that inquiry. And I want to say one more thing, for those of you who have a hard time with the term self love, and I am one of them, I will admit that self love is still a little too hard for me to grasp. But I'm all over self compassion. I'm all over the idea that I can bring the same kind of compassionate perspective, to my own struggles and to the things I don't know. And the things, the mistakes that I made through that lens of self compassion, and feel that same joy and that same solid connection to myself and to others and to the ground. So I want to offer that for listeners to self love freaks you out. I get it. I felt compassion,

right, which is a nice reframe. And a third one, just to offer the name of this podcast before we renamed it as to courage to be curious. So the dhfl was wonder your way to brilliant, and it wasn't this brilliant, like PhD brilliant, it was the brilliant in the sense of that light that Rena was talking about in the beginning, wonder your way to this place where you feel that light is shining through you. And so if that's a con if that if that's a frame, that's good self compassion, self love, that you're seeking your brilliance, your inner brilliance, that just shine with that light that every single one of us has inside, whichever of those perspectives or frames works for you. Take it and then let that be your guide. So one of the things that I wanted were as we're coming down to winding down the podcast, this podcast actually relates to a blog that we've put out there is how divorce can help to cultivate a greater love of life, right lead you to a greater love of life. And so I want to just maybe talk for a few minutes and Reena, how would you summarize, how did your experience of going through this ring of fire this divorce? You know, you've talked about the self love here? How did it really lead you down the path of a greater love of life?

Well, I I was a, a prisoner of my own choosing. I mean, that's what Martha Beck taught us. I mean, any dungeon you're in your your is, you know, it's my choice, it was my choice to still be in this marriage, but I was a fraction of myself and was trying to be my full self and it was not welcome. And so for me my divorce really was an emancipation it was a it was freeing myself from these confines. And, and then coming stepping into my, my life. I mean, it has changed so many things for me, my love of life, I, I don't always like everything in my life. But I love this version of my life that I'm able to have as I step into myself a little bit more and maybe that language is a little out there. But as I really you know, even self love, self compassion, so friendship, that's why I love that word. I'm befriending this one that I walk with every moment. Instead of being a stranger and working against her. I've been working with her. And so I don't know if I've even answered your question Edina. I just I, I love being more Rena ish, and I was not able to do that in the place that I had chosen to be in and so as I become more like Reena, I love my life that much more so anything that that keeps me from myself. I work to step out of that and anything that feels more like Rena, I go that way Did that answer your question? I feel like that might not have been absolutely did but if you ended up wanting to go

see something else because after Amy talks like that, what but but no, I think you absolutely did and you know this piece and maybe I'll go second and then have me go but because what I was gonna say really dovetails is that loving myself. I'm really honestly believing. I enjoy being with myself more than anybody else right now. It's, you know, it's great. I love my kids. I love my partner. I love all these things, but at the end of the day, you're gonna walk I'm gonna walk this journey with me all the way to the end, and I'm delighted at the fact that I Now enjoy this person so much because I didn't, you know, most life, I did not enjoy this person so much. This was like a challenging place to be always kind of fraught with not enoughness or trying to get somewhere else or be something else or being comparative to somebody else and all those things. And that sucked, you know, right? It was not that really lovely place to be. And so the contributing to the love of life, I think you exactly answered the question is, when you are in love with this person, when you are say like, yes, like, I'm gonna watch the rest of my days with you. And I'm totally excited about that. Like that is the love of life. Yes. And so Amy, what's your like version of that?

Well, you know, it's funny, because I'm still working on all of this, right? I almost don't feel quite as far along the spectrum as the two of you, because there's still a little voice in my head, that there are things I do not. You know, and then they come up. So, you know, getting to that point where I'm deciding, you know, what, I'm tired of tired of that, you know, that noise. And working through the the fear of the non enoughness. And I think that that was the decision I made. I think that that changed it all. For me, that was one day that I decided, you know what, and you just referenced this, that, you know, the competitiveness, you know, that I'm no better, no worse, no more, no less than anyone else, you know, I'm enough. And so as everyone else, and if we start from that assumption, if we start from the assumption that everybody is enough, right where they are, because if they were supposed to be something different by now, they would be, you know, but either they don't have the tools, or they didn't have the experience yet. So this is where they are. So this is, it sort of brings us back to present moment, mindfulness. And let's start where we are. And let's start with the thought that okay, we are as complete as we are right now. And whenever we grow into whatever we learn, that's great. And that's coming. And that doesn't, you know, doesn't negate anything that's come before. You know, it adds to it, it lifts it up, it amplifies it. So since we are three life coaches here,

I want to make sure we leave everybody who's listening or watching with something really practical. So imagine you have that person who's listening or watching and saying to themselves, okay, I'm on board, like, I know, I need to do this, right. Most of us if I go clients, like I know I need to, but I don't know how right? I don't know what the first step is to even begin this journey for myself. So we've talked about the cards, we've talked about a life coach, but I'm curious, you know, if that person is sitting, we're sitting right in front of you right now,

what's a first step, not the first step, but a first step, you could say to somebody, just consider this first, next step? To get on that journey? What might you say to them? So Amy, like, what do you think about?

Yeah, there's a tool that I created that I love. It's called from the sublime to the ridiculous. So what are all the options here? What are all the things you could do? They don't have to be legal, they don't have to be moral. They don't have to be ethical, and to give people just to think about all the different things that people have done in that situation, you know, murder is in there. You know, I know someone who once was a waitress and she put eyedrops in somebody strings, apparently that makes them really sick. So you know, things that we're not friends. I'm not we're not friendly. So you know, and I use this in corporate coaching to you know, from the sublime to the ridiculous but it's the most ridiculous response you could have to the US what is the most weird thing you could do right now? Doesn't mean they'll do it and it just sort of opens up the the idea that you can riff about anything and then over the course of a few minutes, they come to more practical and more palatable solutions. So if they're looking for you know, how do I look at this, what do I do next? That's one of the tools I like to use.

Okay, here's the disclaimer, so nobody Sue's me is do not go out there please and put any kind of poison drops in somebody's straight

not a directive of action NOT DO NOT it's okay to fantasize about it but don't do it.

I think the boy ring right that the fantasy allowing ourselves to go to those great lengths just opens up doors in our hearts and minds that we might not have even considered opening so get lettering it doesn't go very far, but don't actually do it.

Yeah, we gotta we gotta let the inner brat out. Because if we don't verbalize if you don't articulate Rena throat, nod her head because we've been through this together. You know, if you don't let that inner brat have her say, she will deal with it.

And a nice passive aggressive way likely but Sarita, what might you say? You've got somebody sitting here and says, Well, okay,

now what's something I could do? Tomorrow or today, what would you say? So I'll reiterate first what you said that get with people who have been through this or no house and whether you will get books or listen to podcasts or hire a coach that that's a very big obvious start having some sort of discussion or education around, there's so many ways to cultivate this type of relationship with oneself that the thing that you can do right now, some people do not like this, and I challenge them anyways, something you can do right now is go to a mirror, look at yourself, eyeball, eyeball to eyeball, and you don't have to say, Oh, I love you, you don't have to start there. If If you can't even look your self in the eyes, just hold your gaze for a moment and say hello. And again, I'm all about cultivating a friendship with with oneself, not just a romance that's there as well, but also a friendship. So that's it, that's a little baby step, you'd look in the mirror, and just say hi to yourself as if you were greeting a friend.


And I love that sort of thing of like holding the eyeball gaze. And it is a really powerful exercise. I've been in live workshops, where people have done that, and it can be really startling, but how much more so how powerful to sit and look at yourself, right? And you just gaze into your own eyes, I love that. It's beautiful. So not surprising, I'm going to do something with questions. So I have two exercises, or two things I want to throw out there is one. And I often say to people, I want you to make a list of 25 things you really like about yourself, you appreciate about yourself. And so I say to them, like just sit down, see what it looks like to make a list of 25 things. And there's always sometimes it's like hesitation, and I'm not gonna be able to do that. And I don't have that. And then when they sit down to do it, and the assignment is that it's like amazing, what happens. And so this is, you know, a written version, kind of I think of Reena, you're looking yourself in the eyeball. And then Amy, I was thinking, you know, my version of that is the sense that ask, making a list of questions. You have a list of like fantasy things. What about how might I? What if we sat down? how might I? What if, and we sat down using? How might what if what could and we just wrote a list of questions that sort of along with Amy's vein of thinking there's something about framing Something in the way of a question that really opens up the aperture. So those are our offerings. Okay, so we have now offered incredible opportunities for people to take that first step, we've also introduced them to some amazing, incredible life coaches who can support that journey, or just the notion of life coaching, if people haven't considered it, this was in no way intended to be a plug for that. But you can't help yourself because you're sitting and listening to these amazing people talk about these journeys. And, you know, and all the guides that we've had along the way. So if you are listening, or watching, we want you to take advantage of the opportunities, go ahead, there's a blog article associated with this, go ahead and read that for more information that you can have to start on your journey. Check out any way like if there's an island, the bookstore, you've been hesitating locking down, consider taking that walk that stroll down that aisle. Absolutely. And we and we want you to just check out our, our social media because on the social media, we often list resources. So for example, these great activities or exercises that we mentioned here, that will give you a download of that so that you can print that out, take that with you and have that resource and then continuing to follow along with us. We're on Instagram, we're on Facebook, we are at courage to be curious, calm, we are on Twitter. And I don't know there's lots of things that were encouraged to be curious. We're all out there. But thank you. I want to like thank you Amy for being back again any is going to be a regular with us. And you can see why because of how much she brings in energy. She brings life in perspective she brings to the show and thanking you Reena today for being here with us being sharing your story. So fully everything that you have to contribute and it has been

such an incredible pleasure to have you on today. And for me, thank you so much for having me ladies.

And then we will be back in September. So this is the end. I'm sorry. No, we will be back. Yes, we'll be back in September and said although the calendar says January is the new beginning. Most of us really feel like September is actually the new beginning. So we're going to be looking from the at the lens of new beginnings. So we will see you back in September.

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