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February 10, 2024 91 mins
Having felt the weight of burnout and the limitations of a relentless pursuit of success, Tina reached a critical juncture in her career. Her realization that there had to be a more holistic approach to professional excellence led her to embark on a profound exploration. Through years of dedicated study with experts in neuroscience, leadership, and human transformation, Tina cultivated a science-backed, heart-centered approach that would redefine her trajectory.Tina's unique perspective on leadership doesn't just stem from her impressive credentials; it's rooted in a personal journey of self-discovery and transformation. From the hustle and grind that once threatened her well-being to the development of a Pause-Notice-Choose approach, Tina's narrative is an inspiring chronicle of how authenticity and courage can reshape not just a career, but an entire leadership philosophy.Get to know more about Tina Parker, a seasoned Courageously Authentic Leadership Coach, TEDx Speaker, and Founder & CEO of Lead Outside the Lines at
To learn more about myself, Michael Esposito, and find out about public speaking workshops, coaching, and keynote speaking options, and - of course - to be inspired, visit
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This show is sponsored by DN tenInsurance Services, helping businesses get the right
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Denten, you're giving back on aglobal scale. Hello all, my entrepreneurs

and business leaders, and welcome tothe Michael Esposito Show, where I interview
titans of industry in order to inform, educate and inspire you to be great.
My guest today is an inspiring leader. She brings a unique, heart
centered and science backed perspective to leadership. With a distinguished career as a retired

Air Force Lieutenant colonel and former Clevel executive, she intimately knows the relentlessness,
the relentless demands and pressures of navigatinga rapidly evolving world. Drawing from
her wealth of experience, has becomea trusted guide for hundreds of ambitious leaders,

empowering them to break free from stagnation, boldly step into their next level
of contribution, and cultivate the courageto transform their purpose driven vision into meaningful
impact, all while staying true totheir authentic selves. She walks the talk
with an MA in Leadership and Managementand certifications in neuro encoding brain health,

transformational mindset facilitation, stakeholder centered coaching, disk behavioral consulting, and awakening conscious
leadership. She's on a mission tocultivate one million, probably over one million,
courageously authentic leaders who lead with intentionalityand create exponential opportunities and possibilities,

sparking a ripple of effect of valuethat benefits billions by twenty twenty eight.
Please welcome founder of a Lead Outsidethe Lines, Tina Parker. Hi,
Michael, thank you so much forhaving me. Thanks so much for coming
on the show today. You're joiningus all the way from California. So

right now, the sun just cameup for you. You just finished your
first cup of coffee. It's socool. Hopefully the coffee's kicked in by
now, we'll see. I thinkit's kicked in. You got that big
smile on. You're ready to roll. You're always ready to rock. So
in your bio, it talks abouta lot of the things that just like
right before we jumped on, Iwas so excited to talk about and we're

going to jump into some of thesethings. But I just want to share
this with our audience on some ofthe things that I'm super excited to talk
about because of your expertise and yourknowledge, but the science backed perspective on
leadership, this to me is huge, huge for everybody that's listening for this
conversation. And the reason why Ibelieve it's so huge and why I'm so

excited about this is in so manyepisodes that anybody's been listening to or that
continues to listen to, I talka lot about meditation and mindset and and
I have great leaders come on andwe talk about different habits and goal setting,
and we talk about how it affectsour moods and our mindsets, and
we get into like the whole mindsetconversation and the whole feeling of it all.

And we're I and the word woowoo has come up before, but
when we go science backed, it'slike, this isn't woo woo stuff anymore.
This isn't just feel good stuff anymore. This is talking about when we
hear neuropathways, this is the sciencebehind that. And so I'm so excited
to dive into that with you today. Yeah, me too. Me.

I so appreciate, Oh the woowoo, because for me, I love
the woo woo, but I'm thewhy. I'm like, why does that
work? What happens with that?Right? And so that was the big
piece for me with science fact isI wanted to understand why were these things
happening. Sometimes there is some woin there, right, but a lot

of times the WU is backed byscience. And when we can understand that,
we can accept a little bit morethat yes, the stuff does work
and there's a reason for it,and I have some control over it.
And that was the other thing too. Sometimes people were like, oh,
things just happened to me, Likesometimes, but a lot of times you're
creating your experience, and so Iwanted to understand why and how that was

working for us. Yeah, andlike you just said, you're creating your
experience and why is this happening tome? These are things where again we
go back to we go into likeI always reference Tony Robbins because that was
my start to self development. Hegets into neuroscience and all that stuff too,
but he doesn't dig too deep onthe surface. We say things like
that and we're like, well,just do these things, and you're like,

oh, okay, I guess thatnow I do feel better, but
we don't understand and why. SoI love that we're going to get into
the why something that I speak on. And you know, I was mentioning
to you before. I just dida public speaking presentation and in speaking we
talk about vocal variety, and Ialways ask my audience why is that important?
They go because we'd want to putour audience asleep, And it's like,
yeah, that's right, but whyAnd you know, I because your

brain pretty much starts predicting what's comingnext, and we go into autopilot and
shut off. And when I tellthe audience that, when I go to
the brain part and no longer becauseit's boring because yeah, it's you know,
it's whatever, and I get intothe brain, they're like, WHOA,
I didn't know that. So it'sso cool when we bring science backed
information into our presentations, our talks, our coaching which is what you do,

our masterminds which you have, soall of that stuff's so so cool.
Yeah, but you didn't get yourstart there, and I always love
to dig into the start and youhave such a cool background. I'm going
to tee you up with what Iknow A little bit about you. Of
course, we want to thank youfor your service as an event in the
military. But it started off asa cheerleader and I'm just gonna spoiler alert

for everybody. A national collegiate champion, So congratulations on that. So walk
us through that journey because we havecheerleader and then we have Air Force,
you know, Lieutenant colonel like,wait a second, how does this happen?
So share a little bit of thisjourney with us and some background there.
Sure, I'd love to, andI will preface it. I was

born into the Air Force, right, So I am an Air Force brat.
Grew up in the Air Force,my dad, both my grandfathers,
so it was in my blood,so to speak, but not forefront of
mind for me at all. Iwent to college, that was not on
my mind whatsoever. So I wentto Oklahoma State University, joined the cheerleading
team there, and yes, thankyou, thank you for the opportunity.

It was amazing. We were nationalchampions for two years in a row,
and just fabulous opportunities, right,and experience there and then and I thought
what am I going to do withmy life? I don't know. In
college, we all hit this roadblockright like this crossroads? Where am I
going? And I actually I walkedinto the ROTC building, the Reserve Officer

Training Corps building on the campus,and I thought, what am I even
doing here? It was just kindof a poll to go, well,
let me just check this out,see what's going on. And there was
a woman, a major, sittingat the table and I sat down with
her and she looked like me.She had makeup and hair done, and
I thought, okay, what isthis? And she said, why don't
you just come in and just giveit a shot. Do it as an

elective. We're in our management andleadership year, which, as you said,
like that is my jam. Shegoes, and if you like it,
you can go to boot camp andyou can commit, and if you
don't, then no harm, nofoul. And that's what I did.
And I thought, Okay, I'mgonna give this a shot. And so
on Saturdays, I was in mycheerleading uniform and on Tuesdays and Thursdays I'm

in my Air Force uniform and classand people are like, what is the
deal? I don't understand what ishappening here? And actually, for me,
I kind of like that because Iwas like, why why do I
have to put myself in a boxjust because I wear cheerleading uniform on Saturday.
That doesn't define who I am.There's more here, right, And

I really think that was maybe theseed of the work that I'm doing now
is helping people break out of thoseboxes that we put ourselves in that keep
us playing small, right. Andso from there I did. I went
to boot camp, I did well. I was the number one cadet at
boot camp to my surprise. Honestly, when they called my name, I

literally sat there and waited for someoneto stand up. I was like,
why is nobody moving? So itwas me, you know, And so
we surprise ourselves when we step outsideof these boxes that we think we belong
in, right. And from there, yeah, I joined full on and
did twenty three years with the AirForce, and it was such an amazing

experience with amazing people, and reallyit challenged me in ways that I probably
would not have done for myself bymyself. But stepping into that environment.
I think we're going to talk abouta couple of the stories from my careers
that it progressed. But that's whatI would say is that when you feel

a pull to something. A lotof times you try to logically go yeah,
but blah blah blah, whatever theblah blah is. After right,
that's your story. It's your storythat keeps you stuck. So yeah,
and we mentioned it earlier. Isaid it earlier, Tony Robbins. It's
like, what story are you tellingyourself? Exactly? And such huge contrast
right with between being a cheerleader,like you said, in the uniform the

uniforms really drew the contrast for mewhere I could see the Air Force uniform
in your Ted talk you show apicture of that and then and then a
cheerleader uniform again in the Ted talk. Is that and the huge contrast between
the two. You know, one'sa skirt, one's pants. You know,
it's like wow, And so you'reso right, like you are stepping
outside of the box on both sides. It's like from the cheerleader to the

Air Force and Air Force as acheerleader, you are really drawing a line
and trying to you're not trying toconform, which which is amazing. And
then you brought that into your life. I do want to stay in the
Air Force for a second here,just because this is this is also part
of this journey is you said twentythree years in the Air Force, and

you know part of your climb inthe Air Force was developing a program,
co developing a program, and I'dlike to just talk a little bit about
that as well as while we're here, absolutely and so, and two of
them actually come to mind, soI'd love to mention both because I think
they play on each other. Thefirst one was when I was a captain,

so I had only been in aboutfive years at this point. In
my mind, and this is whatI talk about in the ted X,
Like in my mind, I'm stillseeing myself as bubbly cheerleader, right,
I still have that. Well,this opportunity was at Air Force Basic Military
Training boot camp, right, Soit's hardcore type a in your face all

day long. And I had anopportunity to lead a team of seventy military
training instructors who were drill sergeants basically, right, Not basically they are,
it's just most people don't know themas military training instructors. And we got
to work together to completely restructure howbasic training was run because it was right

after nine to eleven, right,and if you remember At that time,
everybody was like, what's happening here? The world has changed. We don't
know what to expect. We knewwe had to have our airmen prepared for
more than what they had prepared forbefore. And so I actually stepped into
this experience going what am I doinghere? Like that, I don't belong

here, I don't have the technicalexpertise, I don't even look like them,
Like what is happening in the world. Actually, what came to pass
is my commander told me, shesaid, that's exactly why you're there.
We need something different. We needsomeone who can come in and bridge gaps
and create relationships and really move usforward, not do the same old thing

we've been doing. And that wasa big wake up call for me.
It was wait a minute, whatis different about me is exactly what's needed
to move the needle right, tocreate a different experience and to create space
for others to do the same,because you could probably imagine and boot camp

things are pretty rigid, right,It's pretty strict. It's rigid. It's
to the letter. We got tocome in as a team and go,
how might we do this different?Not what needs to happen it's just what
is it that our airman need?How might we create something that hasn't been
created before? We got to becreative, which was a big key.

Fast forward fifteen years in my careerand I have the opportunity to work with
the Air Force Innovation Catalyst Aftworks,and the whole point of Affworks was to
do it different? Right? Whatdo we not know? What's out there?
What garage ting Gerua is sitting intheir garage working on something that the
Air Force really needs but we don'tknow about it? Right? What idea

do our young airmen have as they'recoming up in their career, but maybe
they don't yet feel they have asafe path to voice it? Like those
kinds of things. That's what Affworkscame together to create. And so we
literally magnetized people who thought different.Right, They had their like, oh,
I have this opportunity to create changein a really positive way, and

that's what we did. Sixty thousandof the six hundred thousand airmen in the
force use our platform to say Ihave an idea. So when you get
ten percent of people that we callout a tipping point, right at the
tipping point, you got ten percentothers are going, wait, what are
you doing? And so what wasreally exciting is that in twenty twenty,

Fast Company recognized Affworks as the numbersixteen best workplace for innovators in the world.
When we beat out Amazon as agovernment agency, don't we literally were
like, do they know that we'rea government I saw that the Amazon piece
and I was like, I hadto reread that because I was like,
wait, what right? Exactly so. But the important part for those two

stories, though, I think,really is when you show up as who
you really are and share your gifts, it creates space for others to do
the same and you can create experiencesoutcomes that you would never have thought possible
before. Yeah, we were talkinga little bit about that, about sharing
our vulnerabilities with our audio, andyou know, you do it with your

audiences and I do that with myaudiences. And how impactful that is for
them because when we share our vulnerabilities, then they don't feel alone and it
helps them, as you mentioned,bridge their own gaps. Right, you
have some that you can share aswell, and we'll go into those.
But I just want to stay onthe air Force piece for a second here,

just kind of keep this in linefor everyone that's listening, there is
a lot of challenges that you hadto overcome, or it seems like a
lot of opportunity that was open foryou that doesn't always is not always the
impression that we have of a governmentagency like the military. And the two
that come to mind is, likeyou mentioned earlier, rigidness of this is
the way we've always done it,and so this is the way we're going

to continue to do it, andso it doesn't seem like it was a
challenge, but I feel like there'sa little bit more to the story and
that this door opened for you ofhey, let's be creative, let's let
your creative genius fly, which doesn'talways sound like the norm from my end,
at least when I'm in a viewingpeople like you. And then the
other one is being a woman andbeing able to overcome the challenge of obviously

they a male dominated organization, tobe able to share your ideas, be
vulnerable, share your ideas with thethought that maybe it'll get knocked down because
I'm a woman. I'm putting alot of words in your mouth, but
these are some of the assumptions I'mmaking when I'm listening, and so I'd
love for you to maybe either youknow, shut them out or explain a
little bit of them for me andour audience today. Yeah, I appreciate

that question because on the surface,yes, you could look in and go
all the challenges. Right. Idon't look like everybody else in the military.
I don't sound like everybody else inthe military. My ideas probably are
not like everyone else in the military. And what I will share is neither
were my dads. And I thinkI had a role model in that respect.

My dad used to hang these twofoot big giant crayons from his ceiling
at his office when he was serving, and when people would come in and
go they're complaining about stuff going on, He's like, just points up to
the ceiling and says, look upthere until you can call her outside the
lines, turn around, and thenyou can come back, right. And
so I really had this role modelof be who you are, be true

to who you are, because whatyou bring to the table is a gift.
But it's not always easy to trustthat when you're in an environment that
may you might feel like I don'tbelong here. Maybe it's not safe for
me to share my experience to bringup what I feel. And that's not
relegated just to the military. Right, There's a lot of people out there

who are like, in whatever spaceand environment I'm in, I don't feel
safe to voice my opinion. Andso I made it. I really made
it a challenge for me throughout mycareer to create space, right, to
create space for other people to feelsafe to share their experience, to share

what's going on with them, tovoice their ideas. And I think in
doing that for others, it createdthe space for myself m right. And
so it wasn't all about me.Hear me, let me have my voice
heard. It literally was I wantto create space because I know there's exceptional
people out here who have ideas thatneed to be brought to the table and

having that space created, I gotto do that as well. I love
that explanation. That is so awesome. We talk so much and this is
because this is this is definitely becauseof your neuro background, because we talk
so much in the self development spaceof like the energy you put out as
the energy you receive, and likethat is what you just described there is

literally that of like I am puttingout, I am accepting of others and
then therefore I'll be accepted. Ofcourse, there are challenges within that we're
we're putting this into a podcast,so of course everyone we have to keep
it to like ten seconds or less. But I thought that that was just
a phenomenal explanation. Your dad,Oh my goodness, Like you know,
I knew we were going to getto him because you mentioned you were in

a military brat. I wasn't surewhich who it was. But I love
the crayons in the ceiling, Likethat is incredible. Yeah, and it's
so visual, right, and peoplecan really just have that feeling of oh,
I am stuck inside of my boxwhen you see these big, two
foot giant crayons, right, AndI just I loved that because my dad

was military and then he stayed inthe government for twenty years after I was
military and stayed and I did governmentwork because I did active duty for a
little while for seven years it's fulltime. Then I went part time to
finish out my twenty three years.In that time though, I worked for
Homeland Security and Department of the Navyand Department of Defense, and so still

within rigid structure, but always carryingwith me what my dad instilled in me
and the ability to hopefully and that'shopefully the legacy that I get to leave
is instilling that in other people,the ability to show up as who you
are and share your genius. Yeah, and you are, you know,

because you've answered so many questions thatI had along the way here of you
know, why did you get chosento lead a pack of seventy people?
Like? And it just from whatyou're just sharing right now, it's like,
Okay, now that's obvious now becauseof the space that you created.
You know, why were you chosento be a part of this innovation team?
Okay, that's becoming a little bitmore obvious. And I think what's

important too is that it wasn't obviousto me in the beginning. It is
now looking back, But in thebeginning, like especially when I was chosen
to go lead the drill sergeants,I was like, I really I did
question my commander and you don't usuallydo that, but at least I did
it in a good way. Iwas like, ma'am, can you help
me understand why are you choosing me? Because I don't see this right?

And that was her belief in me. I see this in the teed X.
I just borrowed it. I waslike, okay, if you're going
to put me there, clearly there'ssomething I don't see, but you see
it. I'll just borrow what youhave and we'll see what happens. And
it worked out, yeah, mirroringall of that. It's so good.
So we've mentioned the ted X afew times here, so I you know,
my ears are burning on it.I'm just like, all right,

you know this is I mentioned toyou before. It's one of my b
hags. You know, it's oneof my for everybody, big hairy,
audacious goals. It's it's becoming morereality for me and some of the work
that I'm doing now and the keynotesand the workshops that I'm landing, so
I'm seeing it as more of areality. But it's still a little couple
more notches and steps away. Andyou've completed one. And I watched it

this morning. It was it wasreally cool this time. They even the
pan on the audience, which wascool, so you could see their involvement
in your in your TED talk.And one of the things that stood out,
outside of of course the amazing speechthat you gave and the content and
you know, everything else about youin it is. You recorded it on
January twelfth of twenty twenty three,and then today. You know, obviously

you're not everyone, you're not listeningto this as of our recording date,
but we are recording today January twelfth, twenty twenty four, one year to
the date of your TEDx talk,which is so cool and a little little
add on to the coolness of itall. Today is also my grandmother and
my birthday, so another little cooladd on. And I'm speaking to you

directly listeners. As I was mentioningto Tina, Whi's also really cool about
it? Is I only you knowI typically do to I typically record too
on Friday's two podcasts, and soI actually, because it's my birthday,
I blocked off half of the day. And so this was like a hard

spot to get to say the leastwith for everyone. And just the chance
that Tina was able to book herpodcast on the twelfth, when she did
her ted talk on the twelfth,I thought was just so cool, just
so cool. It's so cool.It's the synchronicity of it all. Today
we were supposed to be here havingthis conversation and it's just perfect. Yeah.

And you know what's funny too,is like my wife had, you
know, asking me about like whati'd want to do for my birthday.
I had mentioned to you that mydaughter has been sick all week and i'd
been working. I work from home, so she's been home with me.
And I said to my wife,well, I don't want you to take
off from work. I'll stay homeand maybe reschedule the podcast. And my
wife asked me, do you wantto reschedule the podcast? And I said,

you know what, I hate doingthat because it becomes a scheduling nightmare
for everyone. So I really haterescheduling podcast guests. I really hate it.
And I was like, I don'tknow, let me check in with
her and see if she's showing uptoday. And You're like, yep,
I'm coming to and I was justlike all right. So it's just so
awesome because then I always prep formy guests right before they come on,
and that's intentional. It's because Ilike to be fresh with the content and

I don't want to mix it withanything else. I like it to be
fresh with who they are. SoI got to watch your Ted talk this
morning and see the January twelve.So it was just so cool. It
was just so cool, and Iwas just like, I can't wait Ted
talk, Like, are you kiddingme? This is my dream? So
I can't wait to get into this. So I'm interested before we So yes,
everyone, she did a TED talk, right, But let's get into

a little bit of the journey there. What it was the catalyst for you
in getting there? What was itall about for you? Well, I
think, in true fashion of howI do things, it wasn't linear,
and it wasn't normal. You gota text message, yeah, sure,
I'll show up tomorrow. Well itwas. We talked earlier about the Mentor

Project. Yeah, so it's anorganization that I'm a nonprofit that I'm a
part of. And at the time, I was doing marketing with the Mentor
Project to bring more folks in whocould benefit from the mentors that we have
and we send all over the world. And they had been trying a couple
of the folks within the Mentor Projecthad been trying to get a license to
host a TEDx and it had takensome time. And I said, okay,

great, that's you know, thisis I would love to do that
that sounds amazing, but it wasn'tfor me, like I was going to
be marketing the TEDx if they gotit. Well, took a couple of
months for them to get their license. They finally did and the CEO called
me and she said, hey,we got our Techex license. And I
went, oh, that's amazing.Okay, and my brain just starts going
to great, so we're gonna haveto start publicizing da no dah. She

goes, no, no, no, no, we want you to speak.
I was like, oh, oh, okay, that's amazing because they
knew. And this is the pointaround that, though, is when we
can just easily talk about, ohmy gosh, I would love to do
something like that, it sounds reallycool. Well, if that's aligned,

people remember, oh, this issomething you wanted to do, right.
It doesn't have to be a push, it doesn't have to be oh my
gosh, I hustle and grind.Like when we are aligned with the things
that we want to accomplish in ourlives and those things are aligned with who
we are, it kind of becomeslike magic. Like you could look at
that and go, well, thatdoesn't happen to everybody. You're right,

it doesn't, but something happens foreverybody, and when we are aligned and
just speak our truth, things comeand that's that's pretty much the journey of
how that happened. Yeah, andfor everyone listening. TED talks and ted
x talks are a little bit different. I can't speak too much of the

ted talk exactly other than what theorganization is and what it does. But
the ted x talks are typically puton by organizers, as you mentioned,
local organizers in different regions, andthey have to go through a number of
hoops in order to get a licenseto be able to host a ted talk
a ted x talk. Obviously,I've looked into this. I'm like if

I if I can't get offered one, I'm gonna make my own. That's
how the podcast came about. I'mlike, you know, but no,
just kidding, but yeah, Sothere's there's a number of hoops that they
have to go through, and thereis a lot of marketing that has to
be plint pre planned, and numberof seats and where it's going to be
held and all of this planning thathas to go into it. So you
were a part of a really importantpiece to launching this TEDx community where you

are. So that's pretty cool initself, and then of course you were
offered it share with us. We'llget into the story there. But I'm
interested in your preparation for the TEDtalk. And the reason why I'm interested
in this I mentioned to you beforeI do presentations on public speaking communications.
That's that's kind of like my realmand then going into interconfidence in others,

and that's more of where I coach. But on the public speaking side,
big questions that the big question thatpeople have is memorizing their speeches, and
I share with them that on aregular basis, someone who's doing a presentation,
someone who's doing you know, kindof a one off kind of thing,

a talk to their team to whoever, maybe a best man type of
speech and made of honored type ofspeech, you might not want to memorize
it, right because the amount oftime that goes into memorizing is tremendous.
And so that's what I'm interested onyou speaking to more like go with the
bullet points, speak from the heart, just kind of talk about it.

But with TED and ted X,they are very specific. You have to
meet a time you talk about rigidyou have to meet a timeframe, all
this other stuff, and then youhave to have your talk kind of pre
approved previous. So if you couldshare a little bit more about the intricacies
and how you prepared for this talk, I'm really interested in this. Yes,
absolutely, So we started about ayear out. Wowly so January twelfth

or twenty twenty two. Ary Iwas around January, and you think about
it, You're like, Okay,I have this message that I want to
bring because really that's what ted Xis. It's sharing ideas that need to
be shared. And so you havethis message and you just you can craft
a story around the message. Becausethe thing is nobody wants you to just

stand up there and talk to themand give them like out of the book,
right. You want to bring peopleinto a story so they can see
themselves in your story. And sometimes, at least for me, especially with
this story being in the military asa cheerleader, like, some of these
things are very specific that don't applyto everyone. And so we really sat
down and said, okay, whatis the crux of this story, and

it was belonging. Belonging wherever youare because you show up as who you
are and that creates opportunities for othersto do the same. Right, So,
as we were crafting the I onlygot like ten or eleven minutes to
put all of this in here.That was really it. I said,
Okay, what's that thread? Whateverwe're saying in throughout the ted X,

it needs to have that thread throughout. And so when we're sitting down to
craft it, that's what you wantto have top of mind. What is
the experience that I want my audienceto have. How do I want them
to connect to this story and keepthat thread throughout the entire time that you're
talking. It's not the easiest thingto do, but in crafting it,

that is actually what can help youto memorize it. Because you don't have
a whole bunch of stuff all overthe place that you're trying to memorize.
It is all connected to a similarthread throughout right, So that helped me
in memorizing. But yeah, ittakes time, a lot of time to
memorize that, and I will sharewith you I'm glad I did memorize it

because in the beginning I realized asI was about well two minutes maybe a
minute and a half in, Ididn't have the clicker for my slides,
and I'd already started. So youwant to talk neuroscience, The front part
of my brain, my prefrontal cortexCEO part, is like doing my talk.
The very back of my brain,the fear of Migdala is going,

Oh my gosh, I don't havemy clicker. What am I gonna do?
How am I gonna do this?So I literally felt like I had
two brains in that moment. Andso you may see if you ever watched
the teTeX, like I point tothe screen. Well, I hadn't planned
on doing that, but I waslike, how am I gonna do this
thing? And the person that wasstanding by the computer looked at me,
and I was like, point tothe screen. She clicked, Like it

worked. It all worked out fine, right, But the preparation is what
allows you to respond in a momentlike that without freaking out or freezing,
which that was an option at themoment. I had to weigh the options,
but I kept going. So Iwould say, the preparation for a
teTeX, for sure, you wantto memorize it. I agree with you

on everything else, though you don'tneed to memorize everything in your life.
All right, every presentation you give, but for that yeah, yeah,
you definitely want to do it.Yeah, you have to have that in
one memorized, and the timeframe isimportant to I want to speak about the
preparation. That was actually a questionthat came up recently. I want to
speak about that in terms of memorizingit. So you said it was about

a ten minute talk, and there'sstuff that I've read not put into practice
quite yet, but I'd rather hearit from you about how much time,
how many hours did you spend inorder to memorize the ten minute talk?
So I will say our team metevery week leading into it, and in

between that I would probably spend fiveor six hours a week honing it,
getting these parts and pieces together,memorizing it. The few days beforehand,
I literally spent two days, honestly, just blocked out two days and we
just went over it a couple oftimes, took a break and went and

did something else, came back,went over it a couple of times.
And so it is a commitment ifyou're going to do it the best that
you can. It is definitely acommitment multiple hours a week, depending on
your lead time. Right, wehad a long lead time, but yeah,
it takes time and takes commitment.Yeah, what I've been taught and

I haven't put into practice yet butwill be because of a keynote that I
have coming up is it's about anhour a sentence, about an hour's worth
of preparation percent And so from whatyou're saying, from committing it to memory
and also getting the inflections into nations, the gestures, the blocking, all
the different things that come into it, because it's not just memorize it and
say it. We were just talkingabout the neuroscience before of like, well,

then you're just going to be monotoneand people are going to tune out,
and that's not the purpose of thiswhole thing exactly, staying on preparation.
So a question that had come upfor me when I did this most
recent presentation. This was like Wednesdayin today's Friday. So this is why
it's so top of mind for me, is somebody brought up they said,
what you just said, what aboutwhat happens when everything goes wrong? Right?

And how do I overcome all ofthat? And of course my response
was, it's all in the preparationand it's all in the practice. Leading
up to it, because as youpractice, then you realize, okay,
there are workarounds. I'm able tothink on the fly. I'm thinking on
the spot. There's all these differentthings stuff that you just mentioned. And
so if you could kind of goback to that space with us of the

two brains, right, because that'sexactly what happens. Is like while we're
talking, there's another voice that's talking, and it's you just defined it,
right, the amigdala in the backthere. It's saying like, oh crap,
you don't have the clicker, You'renot to how are you going to
fix this? And everything? Sowhat I'm interested in is, of course,
there is the surface answer of whatwe talked about earlier. Of like
I would just tell you you needto practice, you need to prepare.

By doing all of that stuff,you're going to be able to think on
the fly. But I'm not talkinganything science back there. I'm interested in
the science backed preparation part of this, if you could speak to that for
us. Absolutely, we go intothis and my work with conscious leadership.
Right, So we've talked about awakeningconscious leadership earlier as the preparation of how
your body responds in moments of fear. Right, So when we're fight,

flight, freeze, fawn, Alot of people have heard that that's the
fear part of your brain going,oh, what am I going to do?
I'm about to get eaten by thetiger. Like maybe it's not a
tiger, maybe it's oh my gosh, I don't have my clicker, what
am I going to do here?Right, So, the whole notion of
I'm going to get eaten by atiger, our body still feels that.

Right when that fear comes up,it feels like, oh my gosh,
danger, I got to get outof here. And so we have this
reaction and natural reaction to try tokeep us alive. Right, So,
if we think about how our brainis wired, we would like to think
that our raine's mission statement is tomake us successful and happy, and no
it is not. Unfortunately, itis to keep us alive, keep us

safe and comfortable, and expend theleast amount of energy to do that.
So that's a key point right there, because your brain will naturally go back
to what is familiar with because whatis familiar it knows, even if it's
not the best thing for you,it knows. It's like I understand how
to function like this. So I'mgoing back to what's familiar. If you

haven't been preparing, it's not familiarwith you being strong, with you understanding,
hey, I can just figure thisout. It's familiar with you going
I'm out forget it. I'm notgoing to do this right. And so
when we prepare, it's not justpreparing what we're saying. It's preparing how
we feel in our body. Right, so as we go through it.

No, I couldn't have ever predictedthat I wouldn't have the clicker, and
what would I do? But Ican predict not everything is going to go
exactly as I'd like it to,right, That's just life. And so
going back to what you shared earlierabout meditation and breathwork and mindfulness and things
like that, these tools that canhelp us to really be in our body

and not let our head run awaywith the fear that happens. That is
such a key point for moving forwardinstead of fight, flight or freeze.
Yeah, I speak about that withself awareness. Is that when you become
more self aware, which is throughmeditation, you, mindfulness, all that

other stuff, you learn how tocontrol your emotions, You learn how to
have that calmness about you. Youlearn how to when that moment arises,
that fear all that other stuff.You learn how to be able to talk
yourself, talk to yourself about itand go all right, what's going on
here? How what's the best wayto handle the situation. So I'm glad

you're able to articulate some of thatfor us. Something else that you had
mentioned earlier that I made a littlenote on here. You were kind of
touching on the heart centered part ofeverything, and I'd love to kind of
go back to that with the talkabout the heart centered part, because again,
you know, we read heart centered, but it's like, what does
that mean? And you kind ofjust mentioned it earlier, and I'd love
if you could kind of share alittle bit more about that as well.

Sure, absolutely, science backed isimportant, right because we want to say,
okay, I understand why that's happening. What's most important though, for
human connection is the heart. Ican sit here all day and regurgitate to
you words out of a book andyou'll go, yeah, yeah, okay,
thanks, look kind of tune outafter a while. But this being

able to be heart centered, showingup authenticly as a person right. We
are human beings, not human doings. And the science part is very much
about the logic and the doing.But we're beings. We have experiences and
feelings in life. Even people saidto me, oh, I don't do
feelings. No, no, Idon't do that. Like I've had that

conversation with people. I'm like,just that fact that you said that is
a feeling. You're feeling disconnected,you are feeling isolated. It's a feeling,
I'm sorry to tell you. Right, we all do feelings, and
so heart centered. Being heart centeredreally just means being in our body,
being authentic, being us instead oftrying to do all these other things,

it's being who you are. Andone of the things I just would love
to share. So I've been insituations before where I couldn't think my way
out of it. I think youand I mentioned earlier, I've lost a
child and in that moment I'll justshare with your reader, your listeners,
it was it was a stillbirth,and unfortunately, in that situation, he

passed away inside of me, andat that moment, I was like,
Okay, here's where we are,and then clicks in wait, no one
else can come in and do thisfor me, I still have to give
birth to my child, knowing whatthe outcome is, right, And in
that moment, I had a decision. I could let the fear and I
could let the sorrow and the sadnessof the moment take over, or I

could shift into gratitude. And inthat moment that may sound like, how
in the world could that happen?What I realized for me is being in
gratitude, being grateful that the nursingstaff was there to help me, that
my mom had been able to comein and be with me, which was
not going to happen otherwise, butshe was able to be there. My

best friend was able to come inand be with me. I had really
great care, and I was verygrateful for that care. Honestly, that
shift made all the difference in howthat experience played out for me. The
feeling that I have around the experience, now, yes, of course it's
sad, but I don't spiral intodepression around it. I don't spiral down

when I think about it. Iactually can just feel the gratitude of that
day. And I got to holdhim and I got to be with him
until obviously just for a few secondsBut what I came to understand later,
because I'm a brain health trainer,is that actually shifts how your brain functions.

Gratitude will actually turn on your cerebellum, which is has fifty percent of
the neurons that go throughout your body, the ones that determine do you fight,
flight or freeze. So when we'rein fear and worry, that part
shuts down. I didn't know thisat the time. I just knew how
I felt, But now I understandwhy it worked because the fear and worry

you will shut part of your braindown and you go into survival mode and
you shrink. But if you're ingratitude there it hurts of your brain that
light up, and you can makedecisions faster, You feel more confident,
you can recollect things you already knowright instead of like shutting everything out.
So there is brain science behind it. But in that moment, that was

a heart centered moment, but itchose gratitude and it worked out better.
We're going to get into some ofthe how and all that, but first
I want to honor your son.I would assume that you named him and
his birthday. Yes, his nameis Parker and his birthday was August twenty
seventh of twenty ten. Yeah,I'm shifting the way I feel right now,

I feel it. It's so incredibleto speak with someone who's in California
right now. We're on a zoomcall together. We met for the first
time today at eleven am Eastern,and as you share this story and as
we're honoring him, I can feelit emotionally on my end here welling up,

and it's just it's just incredible.When you know we're talking about heart
centered and feeling feelings, It's likeI feel it. You know, It's
incredible. And so that being said, the only thing I could imagine right
now as a as a listener,and I'm a listener to to your story
right now, is you're telling meyou had this moment happen and you shifted

to gratitude. And so two questionscome to mind. The first is did
you already have some training in shiftingto gratitude? Like you know? For
me, I'm in mindfulness. I'min a community. You know, I
feel like you might know who BrendanBurchard is because of what you do.
Yeah, so I'm in the GrowthDay community, and so mindfulness and all

of that comes to mind because I'mlike, Okay, I've been studying and
I've been practicing this, so Iunderstand that. So I'm interested in what
kind of background you had going intoit, and then you just mentioned some
of the neuroscience, but I alsowant to understand how you were able to
get yourself into it. Yeah.Yes, the how is always the question?
Right for me, the question thatI ask myself is what is the

experience that I want to create inthis moment? And I think that's a
very powerful question, no matter whatthe circumstances are, it's what is the
experience that I want to create?The experience that I want to have in
this moment, and especially like ina heart in a moment like I just

shared, or if we are inconflict with someone, right, if we're
in a fight, if we arein a car wreck, right, you
want to jump out and go whydid you come off? You know,
we have these things like but youget to stop. It's that pause,
notice and choose yes. Okay,so this is something to take away for

sure, no matter what the circumstances, just pause for a second, take
a breath, Like breath is sopowerful if you notice when you're stressed and
constricted, you're actually holding your breath. No wonder your brain is shutting down.
It's like, hey, I needsan oxygen here, right, So
pause and take a breath, andthen notice how am I showing up?
What am I feeling inside? Right? Because even if it's isolation and disconnection

and we don't want to feel,that's a feeling. So when we can
notice what am I feeling here?And what is the experience that I'm having
right now? Is this what Iwant? And then you get to choose
no, this is not the experiencethat I want. Because here's the thing.
Every experience we have, your creatingmemories, even if you're only experiencing

it in your mind. M right, there's a saying I think it was
Mark Twain. Don't quote me onthat, but like I've lived, I've
had a thousand catastrophes happen, butonly three of them have actually occurred.
All right, right, all ofthem? He said, It's something I'm
totally botch it. Yeah, wegot it, you get it right.
One hundred thousand things happen in yourmind, maybe three of them will actually

play out in real life. Butwhat you are doing is creating what is
familiar in your mind. Right,So if I'm creating catastrophe after catastrophe in
my mind, my brain is like, man, your life is terrible.
I don't want that, and itbacks out. It's like no, No,
we get to create our own experiencesbased on how we're thinking and feeling

about things we think. It's theother way around. We think, oh,
something was done to me. No, you create an experience about it.
That same thing might happen to somebodystanding next to you, and they
may have a very different experience ofit than you do. Right, It
happens within us, and so thatpause, notice choose is very powerful.

It is, and you know,I've learned some of it in a different
in a different way. But Ireally love that about the experience that we
want to create because it's also italso kind of helps me understand even better
the phrase this is happening for younot to you, absolutely right, because
then when it's happening for you nowyou really do start understanding that it's happening

for me to create the experience thatI want out of it, which I
don't think is ever clicked before untiljust this conversation right now, oh good,
Yeah, the experience is so important, right, And a lot of
times, like you said, it'shappening for me, not to me.
In the moment, it can behard for us to accept that. Yeah,

right, in that moment of losingmy son, thinking oh, this
is happening for me, Well no, not really, that's not what I'm
thinking, Like, this is notcool. I don't like this. But
fast forward a little bit of time, and because I'm able to share the
story and just go, hey,this is my experience, other people who
have gone through that have opened upabout their experience, right, and it

has created an opportunity for people whomight keep silent and hold it, which
causes shame. That silence causes moredepression, more shrinking. But when they
can talk about it and go,oh my gosh, yeah I had an
experience like that too, and theycan share it, it relieves some of
the burden that we feel. Andthat is where human connection happens. Share

with us that how that shame kindof holds people back. And the reason
why I asked that is what wetalked about earlier, which is about how
important it is for someone like yourself, myself, others who speak openly who
make themselves vulnerable for their audiences.How important it is for us to kind

of kind of shepherd that growth,right, Because I mean, I feel
it's our responsibility as speakers. Ifwe have the gift of being able to
speak like you and I have andothers like us have, then it's our
responsibility to be able to be thatvoice for them and uplift them. And
again I go back to the neuroscienceof this from you in that how important

it is to help them release thatshame. Oh, it's so. It
is the old tunity for those whofeel called to share their vulnerable moments because
when we can see that other peoplehave had experiences that are similar to ours,

it helps us to feel like we'renot alone on the island, right.
And what happens in our brain isyou are creating neural pathways. Like
if you think about your brain asall these billions of nodes that are connected,
right, and it's all the stuffthat's all happened to you, all
the beliefs that you have, which, by the way, ninety five percent
of your beliefs have happened before youwere seven years old. So give yourself

some grace if you've got some crazybeliefs that you're like, wait, that
doesn't actually feel true for me.It's probably not. You can change them,
right, But that's the beauty ofthe brain. It is malleable.
Every time we have an experience,it gets wired harder and harder in our
brain. So what fires together wirestogether. So as your neurons are firing

and going, oh, I'm alone, I'm the only one who's experienced this,
people are going to think that I'mcrazy. I can't talk about this
with anybody else. The more youthink about that, the more that becomes
your truth. And that's the pathof least resistance. So if we think
about it, of course it's aleast resistance. It's happened over and over
and over in our brain. Sowhy that's familiar to us? And your

brain goes, well, yeah,I guess so, because you've been thinking
it a lot, so it mustbe true. But when we can open
up and talk about, oh,this is what's actually going on for me,
and we can feel that opening up, it's hard at first because we've
got so much chatter in our headtelling us no, don't talk about these
things. But the more that wecan open up and share you feel a

burden released, and what you domore, you get better at So if
it feels difficult at first, that'sokay. Just understand that's you growing,
that's capacity happening, right. Andso the more you do something, the
easier it gets. And the moreI share my story about what happened for

me and how I dealt with it, it doesn't get easy, but it
feels okay to say it, andother people feel okay to share their perspective.
And when we're connected in perspective andwhen we're connected in our stories,
it lifts everybody around us up.I am right now, I'm just like,

wow, this is like, thisis so awesome. This is such
a birthday gift. Let me tellyou, it's such a birthday gift.
Happy birthday. This is great.I'm so glad to have this conversation.
Neuropathways is like the one that I'mlike, I want to dig into.
I also wanted to share something witheveryone too, and what you just said
there is and so if we cancreate a reality of ourselves of fear and

create a reality of I'm not worthy, I'm afraid of this, all bad
is happening to me, whatever,all these negative thoughts. And if that's
true with what you just shared,which which we know it's true, right,
science has proven it to be true, which is wonderful, then the
other is true too, in ouraffirmations, in our positive thinking, in

our goal setting, in what youand I in the self development worlds talk
about of journaling, of visualizing,of believing in ourselves, of telling ourselves
a story. And it's so funnybecause so I've been meeting with my coach
for now, we're going on threeyears. And when I first would meet
with her, Merit, she's amazingmaster of one coaching. When I would

first meet with her, I wouldsay, Merit, I feel like I'm
just like telling myself stories and liesto myself about myself. And she's like,
well are they And I'm like,I don't know, I believe I
could do this. She's like,okay, so why do you believe you
could do it? And we wouldget into like maybe my history or some
credibility that I have in that field, or you know, the mentors I
have around me. She's like,okay, so is it true or is

it false anymore? Right? Andit's so funny because now looking back,
it's like I would tell her thatall the time, and I'd say,
I feel like I'm just talking myselfinto this or that I'm I was like,
yeah, that's actually what I wasdoing. I was you talked yourself
into the other stuff too, that'sright. And so she's so right when
we're I'm not worthy, who amI? I can't do this? Those

are all just stories we've played outover and over and over, so our
brain thinks it's true. Okay,well you said it enough times, right,
you can shift it. And themore you say the other your brain
starts to go, oh, well, I guess that must be true because
you said that more. Yeah.Yeah, we're talking to ourselves all the
time. We have to choose whatwe're saying to ourselves. Yeah, and

there's a reality of possibilities, right, so you know it's it's I'm capable
of anything, like I don't AndI don't like using the word can't.
I'm capable of anything, but yeah, the truth is I can't dunk a
basketball right now. That's the truth. And unless I'm willing to put in
the effort and work to try tobe able to that's a different conversation.

It doesn't still doesn't mean that I'llbe able to dunk a basketball. So
there are there's there's some things thatI think sometimes we need to kind of
just separate, uh there, Andthat we were capable of motivating ourselves and
moving ourselves into a whole different emotionand feeling, which is much different than
being able to do something like totallytangible like dunking a basketball. All right,

that's a whole different thing. Likeif I just can't jump high enough
and I you know, no matterwhat the workouts are, it is what
it is. And something keep onon that too, is like I'm not
going to be able to go jointhe Olympic gymnastics team tomorrow, Like not
going to happen right right, Butwhen we can tap into what is it
about that that excites me? That'sit. It's about It's not Okay,

no, I'm forty eight years old. I'm not going to go do that
right now, got it? Butwhat is it about that that I like,
maybe there's something else in life thatcan fuel and feed that emotion that
we're attaching to that thing? Yeahyeah, And how can I live into
that person that fuels that? Right? Like maybe it's the athleticism of that

person, the workout, the workethic, all of those things. Definitely
we're not going to lose sight ofneuro pathways. But I do want to
stay in what we're talking about herein visualizing, because a lot of what
we're talking about is affirmations believing inourselves, and part of that comes into
the visualizations of not just meditating,but meditating and manifesting and creating realities in

our mind that we want to doso achieving a goal. So I can
sit down in a meditation, givemyself some prompts of seeing myself on stage,
of talking to my audience, oflooking them all in the oir eyes.
I can visualize all of this.And there's a key component this of
this that you touched on earlier,and I want to dig into on the

neuro of this, which is feelingit. So all of the other stuff
is awesome journaling about it, writingabout it, making some time seeing it
in my mind and everything, andthen what I've learned is it's the feeling
of it all that really ties itall together. And like I said,
you touched on some of this,So if you can really dig into this
with us, yes, absolutely,when we feel it in our body,

it wires even deeper, right,that feeling of it. You go back
to a physiological feeling all the time. If you're ever triggered by something and
you don't know why it triggered you, you're not logically thinking, oh that
thing triggered men, I don't likeit. Your body is feeling a physiological
response to something, right, that'sthe trigger. And so when we can

show of how we're feeling about thingsand anchor in that feeling, it becomes
more natural for us to show upthat way. Right, So every time
we get triggered by a psych aphysiological feeling, it becomes easier and easier
for us to get triggered. Andwe wonder, why is this so hard
for me? I'm trying to shiftbecause you're logically doing it. You're just

trying to tell yourself, oh,I'm not bothered by that. Yeah you
are. You feel it in yourbody, right, And so it's these
feelings that either that anchor us andcertain responses. And so a lot of
times when when I'm working with folks, I'll let I'll share with them that
in your vision, what you're envisioningcreates a response in your body. Right,

when you in vision something that youreally is so terrible for you that
it's just an experience you really reallydon't want to relive again, it's not
just a memory playing out in yourmind. Your body is responding to that.
Start to feel down, you startto feel depressed. Right, What

we envision in our mind creates aphysiological reaction in our body, and it's
that piece that keeps it coming backover and over and over and over.
So in the meditation, in themindfulness, in breath work, in being
able to shift these feelings in ourbody, that's where you're going to get
the biggest return. Because when wetalk about visioning, your brain operates in

images, right, So any imagethat you put in your brain, it's
storing it as a quote unquote memory, whether it's happened or not. We
talked about this earlier, right,whether it has happened or not, your
brain doesn't know, does not knowthe difference between imagination and reality. Literally,
So if you can consistently put thesevisions of what you want into your

mind and feel what that feels likein your body and really sink in to
go, ooh, what am Ifeeling? When that's the case, your
brain and your body start to actin kind and remember, oh that's familiar.
Yeah, we can do that.That's good. So there is such
a link between our body and ourbrain. In fact, your heart actually

sends more signals to your brain thanyour brain sends out to your body.
Most people don't know that. Yeah, tell us, tell us about that
because I know, you know,I listened to Mel Robbins podcast and she
was actually talking about the development ofour development as we're in the womb of
how actually our if I'm getting thisright, our nerve endings really start getting

created in our stomach before our brain. And so they are, and that's
the reason why we get butterflies inour belly when when we're nervous or something.
Yes, it's that physiological response andreaction that we feel. And she's
so right. In fact, Iwill share like as a business owner,
right when you're starting a business,especially if you've come from a life that

that wasn't your life life, you'reconfronted with some things, right, You're
confronted with this is a whole newspace for me, and I get to
step in. It's one thing totell yourself you get to step in,
but I will share around sales.I had a story around selling, and
it wasn't just a mental story,because even when my mental story changed,

I would get this feeling in mygut when I had to talk about money,
and I was like, that doesn'tmake any sense. I knew it
did because of my background, butmy like on the surface, I was
like, it makes no sense becauseI know that's not true. Logically.
In my mind, I knew thatI was bringing value to people and it
was worth the money. But inmy stomach, I could feel this,

oh gosh, don't have the moneystory. Don't have the money talk right.
It's a physiological response, and untilwe can uproot that weed, because
that's what it felt like. Itwas like a weed that I had to
keep cutting off every time i'd havethe conversation. I had to do the
body work to really change that feelingin my stomach, and that is when

things shifted er me. It wasn'tuntil then could you stay with the money
talk. Because I would assume thatmost of our listeners who are this long
in the program either know who youare and are so interested and enthralled by
your story, or are also entrepreneursexperiencing similar feelings and are like, all

right, how are we going toearn more by listening to this podcast?
And that's of course not what I'mselling here or pitching here to you,
my audience listener right now. Butwhat we do know is that we all
want to be successful and money financesplay a big role in this. And
as entrepreneurs, as business owners,as leaders, wherever you are in your
company, you have to sell something. You have to sell the idea,

you have to sell the thought,you had to do it in the air
force, you have to sell thecreative being of whatever it is. And
then also as coaches as entrepreneurs,we have to sell a product and a
fee comes up, and a lotof times we're the ones making up that
number. And so that feeling thatyou're talking about, that ickiness, that
weirdness, that is it really value? Is it my price? Is it

my fee comes up? And soif you could just shine a light on
what you just shared there of yourexperience and how you moved into the feeling
of the new story, absolutely yeah, and you are so right. I
had this vision or had this storyof selling, but I've been selling my
whole life. As leaders, That'swhat we're doing. We are enrolling ourselves

and others into a vision. That'sall selling is. And when I logically
understood that, I was like,Okay, I got this, no problem.
But I still got that feeling inmy stomach. Right, And so
for us we get to go back. It's not just about the money.
We think it's about the thing,but it's not. It's about what that

thing represents to us, right,So I want to really help people attached
to this notion is money money,it's a piece of paper. But what
did it mean to me? Whatwas the story that I've been telling myself
over and over and over and overthroughout my life. That it meant what
I realized for myself after working withsomebody, Because sometimes we can't see the

things that are in ourselves. Right. As much as I know about neuroscience,
as much as I know about coaching, there are some things about ourselves
that we can't see within. SoI elicited some help to help me go
deeper. Go what is that?Well, what I realized for me is
I had a story that if someonewas paying me this now just became a

transactional relationship instead of a genuine relationship. And I didn't want transactional relationships.
I don't want relationships or some ofthe things. I give you something,
so you give me something, andif I don't, you don't. Right,
I don't want that. I wantreal connection with people. I really
want to help people. So whenI had this feeling up, I knew.

I was like, this is somethingmore than just money, and it
was about the type of relation Iwant it with people. But where that
came from was my upbringing. Right, don't ask for things, just give,
just serve, don't be a taker. Right. We have these beliefs

that and like I said before,we're seven ninety five percent of our beliefs
are already imprinted on us. Becauseuntil then, your brain doesn't know the
difference, it doesn't assess meaning.It's just like whatever comes in comes in.
It's like a recording. That's whatwe play out over and over and
over in our lives. And soit really does take going deeper and understanding

what is it about the money?It meant a transactional relationship. So when
I shifted that and was like,hmm, that's not who I am.
I'm not transactional, I really gotto embody that that's where the body part
comes from embodying that no matter what, I'm showing up to serve because that's

who I am. Money's great.It all started to flow after that.
It is amazing how we subconsciously canself sabotage ourselves just by not being aware
of where these stories come from thatwe play over and over and over.

Yes, we play these stories overand over again. And you're reminding me
of my own stories here, andit's it's really incredible, Like you know,
it's the stories that we especially withmoney, the stories we tell usselves
about money. And I mean Iremember very vividly as a kid, and
it's so funny when you mentioned sevenyears old, I'm just thinking, I'm
like, wow, where where didmy money stories come from? And you

know, I grew up in amiddle class family that what we would call,
I guess a middle class family.My father's physicians assistant, my mother
a teacher for a long all workedfor the Board of ad so good income,
own their home. We travel vacations, ski trips, went to all
of Europe, visited all of Europe. Private school, like we went to

Catholic school growing up, and yetthere was a money story, and the
money story was never enough, neverenough. It was never enough. We
weren't. We had d Volvo,but we didn't have the Mercedes. We
had the ski trip, but itwasn't in veil, you know, it
was you know. And and thereason for that thought process is because our

cousins did. My uncle was ableto not that they went on those trips,
it's just that the trip that weall went on with each other as
a family together, as all ofus, they were able to do a
little bit more, or it camea little bit easier, right, It
came a little bit easier. Myparents had to put in for vacation,
time, had to save up forthis vacation, and they were just making

it. When I look back onall of this, they were just making
it to be able to give usthat experience, whereas for some of the
others that we went with, itwas a little bit easier from our optics.
Of course, right from our perspective, it was a little bit easier.
But that's the money story that mysister and myself and my younger brother.
But he's nine years later, sohe kind of had a different money

story. I think, at leastthat's the story I like to tell myself
as the older brother. You know, we had the story of like I
remember my father saying, you know, these are the sacrifices we make in
order for you to go on aski trip. And I remember my sister
and I being like, we wantthe new Jordans. Well she didn't say
that, I want the new Jordans. I don't care about a ski trip.
But you know, looking back,I'm so happy that we had that

experience. But you're right, it'sthat that idea of when will it run
out? Is there enough? Becausehow am I going to get that?
And that's a money story that I'mobviously familiar with because I've worked through some
of it. Absolutely, but I'mnot there yet. But your parents never
probably said that, right. That'sthe thing. They didn't say those words,

oh it's never enough, right.It was just the way in which
things played out, and that feelingof oh gosh, it's not oh gosh,
I had to struggle to get here. Yes, it's that feeling that
gets embedded in us, and thestory just keeps playing out from that feeling.
Yes, I'll be vulnerable with everybodyright now, because we mentioned vulnerability

being very important. I remember alittle family group therapy session that we were
all in. My father and Iused to really get at it. You
know, my father, by theway, is also a veteran. He
came he was in Vietnam, andso there was a lot of PTSD and
he had a lot of trouble controllinghis emotions. And me growing up in
that environment, so did I,and so there was a lot of battles

at home and so all okay,like nothing nothing ever over the line,
but at least we did seek therapyas a family, and the four of
us are in there, and Iremember my sister and I just complaining or
whining about something and whatever it wasright, and I just remember my father
going, uh, you know,I could be you know, the fancy
car and buy your mother. Thiswas the one buy your mother a fur

coat. But we have you inprivate school, you know, in private
school, that in Catholic school,whatever it was. And I remember my
sister and I have gone buy herthe fur coat. We don't want to
be in private school. And mymother's like I don't want a fur coat,
Like what is this coming from?Like what is all of this?
But it's exactly what you just said. That never enough story it's he didn't
say it's not enough or be grateful. He was using these examples that made

us feel like we don't have enough, and you know, all of the
stuff we're talking about. So it'svery interesting. It's funny that you bring
that. And I was like laughingas you were telling me. That.
So good and I appreciate you sharingthat too, because he didn't say it
right. It was that feeling youhad because of the experience. Yeah.
Yeah, I just want to goback to neuropathways because I love this.

I love it. It's a wordthat is used very often and the only
thing I see and I think itwas because of a meditation app that he
painted this picture for me. ButI just see it as like sledding,
right, Like we have this beautifulmountain and it's clear, excuse me,
it's clear with the snow on it. It's just untouched snow. And then

we have this sled that goes down, and then this other sled that goes
down this other sled, and sowe have all these paths. And so
that's what I usually visualize when Ihear the word neural pathways. I believe
you touched on it before when you'retalking about them firing off and connecting.
Could you just share a little bitmore in that space for us. Yeah.
Absolutely, So everything that's happening inyour mind, every experience that you

happening, you're having, the neuralpathways are connecting, so they can send
signals around your brain and send itout to your body to tell you what
to do. Right, And sowhen when those signals fire every time,
let's say a signal from I reallywant to go speak, but oh gosh,
I'm not good enough to do that. If that's the story that's playing

out that pathway of I'm not goodenough to do that, I'm not good
enough to do that, it getsstronger because we keep saying it over and
over and over right, and soI liken it as like a dirt road.
So you're going down a dirt road, and it splits into two paths.
One path is, oh, I'mtotally going to do that because I'm
amazing. The other path is,who do I think I am? I

can't do that? And if wehave worn a groove so strong on the
path of who do I think Iam? I can't do that? The
wheel of our car just naturally goesthat way, right. So that's where
we get the path of least resistance. Right. You mentioned it earlier when
you said yeah, I was saying, oh, I'm going to tell myself

a different story, but it doesn'tfeel true to me, right, And
your coach was like, well,what evidence do you have that it could
be true? Right? We getto shift because here's the deal. Your
brain wants to keep you safe.So if speaking feels scary to you,
it's naturally going to go to theNope, no doing that, And so

you're gonna defall into that pathway ofno, that's not for me. But
you still have that little boyice thatsays, no, I really want to
do it. Right, So wewhat you do most, you strengthen.
So if I'm telling myself a lotof times I can't do it, that
pathway is getting stronger. We canweaken that pathway and shift over to yes,

I really can do this. Thisis something I really care about.
I'm excited to do this, andI want to share something about this too.
If we're thinking let's keep on thespeaking on stage's part, right,
If we're thinking, oh my gosh, I'm gonna forget what I have to
say, I'm gonna look stupid.They're gonna think I'm a moron. Well,
yeah, that fear is coming up, right, and that response of

whooah, that sounds scary. Don'twant to do that when you can,
what are you actually wanting to do? You're wanting maybe you're wanting to impart
some wisdom that maybe will help peopleright think about what's gonna be their experience
afterward. Maybe they're going to leaveand go so wow, I never even
realized that someone else is dealing withthat. I'm not by myself. Wow,

I never realized I could do thatand then go out and take a
step. You have to shift andthink about what is the experience you're creating
for other people. Not be soworried about yourself and about what they're thinking.
Okay, and when we can startto put ourselves in that space,
our neuropathways change. We can change. It may not feel right at first

because you for so long have thoughtone thing, but when you shift that
new thought, that new experience willbecome stronger and it will become your path
of least resistance. You just gotto keep doing it. It's my conosition.
Yeah, I love that. Andso when you were talking about the
firing of the neuron. So there'sa true, actual connection that happens.

Is that what you're saying, Yes, yes, it's actually it's energy right
right, We're all energy, right, a big baalds of energy. So
if you think about it as allthese nodes and they're firing information off to
the next one saying, hey,go do this, go do this.
I understand this. You know,all of those little nodes are connected.

Those connections, in those connections iswhat is telling your body what to do.
And so they then the node hitsand they connect and then that's when
that's when it gets stronger. Andthat's when we're talking about neural pathways.
That's what we're talking about. Thatconnection is the pathway that we're talking about
exactly. That connection is the pathway. All of these little connections. You

have billions of connections, right,and literally that's why they say you're so
malleable when you're young, because allthese connections are firing like crazy, right,
firing like crazy. Right. Wetend to think, oh, I
got to a certain point. Mybrain is what it is. You're consistently
every time, if you're living allof these little connections are firing off information

of what to think, what tofeel, what to do, how to
move right. If you let itbe on autopilot, Remember what the mission
of your brain is, keep mesafe, me saying comfortable, and expend
the least amount of energy to doit right. Right. If my pathways
are so worn that I don't haveto expend a whole lot of energy to
think I'm not good enough for that, well, that's one of the three.

Already expend the least amount of energy. Keep me safe. No,
I don't want to look like afool on stage. Okay, No,
I'm not doing that right. Keepme comfortable. Man, that feels like
a big thing. I don't thinkI can do that. It's uncomfortable to
me. Your brain goes, okay, we won't do it right. So
you've got to remember your brain isthere to keep you safe, comfortable,

and expend the least amount of energy. Yes, so funny. So one
more quick little story for you.When I first got married, I'm very
happily married eleven years now, andI say that intentionally because of what I'm
going to say next. My wifeis my dream girl. I married her.
She's beautiful and she's she's a lovingmother and a forgiving wife. Let's

put it that way, right.But I remember when we first got married
before I think it was like rightbefore we got married and maybe into the
first year, I always kept askingher. I was just like we could
always, like, you know,end this whenever we want, right,
And she's at first she was likeweeded out by the question. She's like,
wait, why are we doing this? Why are you asking me this?
And I was like, I justneed to know that there's like an
out to all of this. Andwhen you just said that, I'm like,

that's what was happening back then,was like that was keeping me safe.
Yes, yes, because you're like, what if all this blows up
in my face your brain goes okay, let's not do it right. Eventually
she was just like, yeah,fine, whatever you want. We can
get a divorce whenever you want,if that's what you need, if that's
what you need to get married.I'm like, okay, good, I
just need to know that that's onthe table. Like wow, I see

and thankfully, like maybe in somelevels she recognizes yes, right, She's
like okay, yeah, you're doingyour things. Yeah, she's a teacher,
herself about it, right, insteadof judging you about that and oh
you're not in all this. Youjust tried your your brain's like, I
just want to be safe here,That's all I always say. I'm very
I'm very fortunate. She's a she'sa teacher, and she's she's a special

ad teacher. So I found Ifound the right person for me. Awesome,
so good. I knew that theneuropathway thing was going to be such
a great conversation with you because youdid help me really understand this whole thing
when you just said you're talking aboutand that's why a child's mind is so
malleable and when and that's what Ireally was trying to understand. The connection

when people say neuropathways is that they'reall firing off, and with a kid,
they're firing off and there's no pathsand and that's why they're so right.
That's why they're so malleable. Andfor us, why it's so important
to keep learning and keep growing isbecause we're firing off new things and we're
getting these new paths that are noteven set yet either. And that's so

now you see, this is whyI was just like I know I need
to talk with you and about thisbecause I knew you were going to open
my mind up to this so differently, because, like I said, my
other way of thinking, which iswhat I've learned up to this point,
has been okay. It's just likethere's these paths here and we're just trying
to change direction, which you kindof explained a little bit. But with
the brain, the science back,that's what I love. But I was

like, let me tell you.When I saw that badge on your website,
I was like, oh my goodness, one, I need to find
out how to get certified in this. So that's another question I have for
you. That could be offline,online, whatever we want. But I
was like, I can't wait untilwe start digging into this because Brendan Burchard
talks so much about it. Abook I'm reading right now on Leadership Michael
Bengay on Ask Better Questions something aboutthat with Leadership talks about it, references

it, and I'm like, Ijust need to learn more. So I
love how you brought that together.So much more to get into, but
obviously, you know you you havethings to do. Everybody listening has things
to do. Everybody's got to getplaces. A couple of things I want
to just touch on in your TEDtalk, and then I just want to
get into your filanthropic work with theMentor project because I owe like to make

sure that we touch on something thingslike that. Is in your TED talk
you talk a lot about showing upcourageously, courageous authenticity. Oh my goodness,
that speaks to my heart, andthen elevating lives of others as part
of your leadership style. And ifyou could just share a little bit about
that, yeah, sure. Honestly, I was thinking, what is it

that's been at play when things havebeen going well? Right when I started
this coaching business. I thought backto when things were working really well with
our teams, with myself was atwhat was at play? And that's where
the courageous authenticity came up? Isaid, that was it. It's being
myself, even at a time whereit might have felt like that was risky,

right, that the courage part wasthere to go, Okay, I
just get to show up at myas myself and let the chips fall where
they may, right. And that'swhat we shared earlier, is like creating
space for others to do. Thatallowed me to do it, and it
allowed them to do it. Andwhat that has brought up is ideas that
would never have been birthed, rightif there wasn't that space to just courageously

step in as who you are andshare your gifts and with aftworks. That's
what we experienced, Like we wouldliterally throw out this idea that it might
sound totally off the wall, buthad I not said or had someone else
not said this crazy idea, itwouldn't have sparked an idea for someone listening.
Right, And so when you throwsomething out there and it might feel
like, gosh, I'm stepping intothe space, this doesn't like, ah,

I'm going to be judged. Weget to turn into curiosity, right,
courageously, being courageously authentic means beingcurious instead of judgmental, because that
opens up so many doors for us. And I I would just say that
the courageous authenticity, the part aboutbeing curious, creates connection. The courage

opens up pathways that you wouldn't haveseen prior to that, and it magnetizes
opportunities to you because as we said, we're energy, right, I won't
get all woo and science about that. Right now, because we don't have
a whole lot of time, butwe're giving off an energy, and when
that energy is like someone else's,it magnetizes them to us. It's like

a magnet, right, And sowhen we are courageous, when we are
curious, when we are authentically whowe are, we're going to magnetize those
people and opportunities that are aligned withthat. We get in trouble when we
try to put ourselves in a boxand hide that and shrink away from who
we are, because then it's like, well, I don't really know how

to attach to you because it can'ttell who you are right. Case in
point, and I'll be very quickabout this. I had a client who
he was a venture capitalist and hewas a super expert in deep tech,
which a lot of vcs they don'thave the expertise he did. At first,
he saw it as oh, I'mvery different than everybody else, but
he knew he had something to bringand so we talked about I said,

Okay, what is it that youwant to do. He's like, I
want to create a whole new fundthat is deep tech focused because I have
all of this experience and I seethings others don't see. He's like,
I've created I've chosen unicorns like theywent to billion dollars and he's like,
I know what I'm doing. Iwas like, man, I believe you,
So what's the problem. And hesaid, well, I don't like
to talk about myself. And Iwas like, okay. It was the

beliefs, all the things we've beentalking about, right, this feeling of
ew, I'm gonna feel arrogant orI don't like to talk about myself.
He was giving off an energy ofyeah, I know what I'm doing,
but but and hiding and shrinking backliterally when he opened that up and was
like, Okay, I get toshare this because it can help other people.
It's not about me looking amazing.It's about helping other people really make

great decisions because I know something theydon't know. When he shifted the way
he was talking about that, twoinvestors who had been standing on the sidelines
for years going we like you,but we don't really know what to do
with you immediately came out and theywere like, let's do this, and
they together created this new fund.Never would have happened if he had kept

himself in the box. He thoughthe was supposed to be in instead of
sharing what was really genuinely unique abouthim. Thanks for sharing that. That
really does bring the three together.And I love those three and you mentioned
them in so many phrases into tedtalk. But that's what I jotted down
was the showing up, courageously,courageous, authenticity, and elevating lives of
others, and what you just sharedin that story. He did all three

of those and all of that.All right, I love everything we talked
about. We mentioned the Mentorship Projectand I would just like to pay it
some tribute here as we wrap upour show, our episode today in what
that is and how you got involved. Yes, absolutely, the Mentor Project

dot org. It is a nonprofitwhere we bring together so many incredible people,
astronauts, astrophysicists, Nobel Peace Prizewinners. I mean, you're talking
about people that a lot of kidswouldn't have access to right in their environment,
and so the Mental Project brings togetherthese folks so we can go out

and share their stories with kids allover the world. In Tanzania, North
Carolina. I mean you talk aboutall over the world. We're everywhere,
and so what we're what we reallywant to do is help kids to understand
what's possible for them. Because whenwe can see someone else has accomplished something,

it's possible we might still have that. Well, it's not possible for
me, but we try to instillin others is that, look, if
someone else can do it, thereis a pathway to it. You just
need to learn what it is.You need to tap into who you are
and step in and share your gift. Right. So we're really just trying
to reach kids to inspire them tobe their best selves, bring their best

to the world, and recognize there'sso much more possible than they may envision
right now for themselves. So true, great work that you're doing there.
And of course, and that speaksto why it's so important to be vulnerable,
to be a courageous to be courageouslyauthentic, because when you are,
then you can share that with thesekids that you're talking about you they can

see that experience. And I meanI know this from people around me that
deal with inner city youth, alcoholics, anonymous and other groups. Is the
ones that the kids stick with inthe inner city are the ones that came
from the inner city and and showthem that they're successful because they can relate

to them. It's exactly what we'vebeen talking about, right somebody in AA.
You can't go in as a soberas a person who's never experienced what
they've gone through and go in andbe like, oh, be sober tomorrow.
They're not going to listen to you. They're going to connect with the
person that's gone through it. SoI love that what you're doing there.
And so finally, I mean reallylike your mantra. It's everything we've been
talking about, which is so coolof the way you live your life,

which is what you believe you becomewhat you believe you become, because how
you identify yourself. We will alwayscome back to that. If I believe
that I am not a person whocan speak on stage, it's going to
be so hard for me to getthere. But if I believe that,

hey, maybe I don't know whatI'm doing yet, but I can learn
and I believe I'm going to beon stage, you will be so believe
in who you are, believe inyour capabilities, believe in what you want
to bring to the world, andyou will become it. And I'll share
that. For me, it's it'sthe converse of that story. I know
we've used that as an example,but there's a truth in this story.

For me, it's always been thebelief of being able to speak on stages.
It's always been a belief of beinga public speaker, and so I've
always looked for courses. So Itook public speaking, I took theater.
I've been in theater. I've beenin I've acted, I've been on stage.
I've done all those things, andit's really just scaling and leveling for
me. My limiting belief for whatI didn't believe was to be an entrepreneur

and to quit my nine to fivejob and to stop going to job boards
and looking right you two, andto stop looking for jobs I didn't know
that I had. And that's whatI worked on with my coach. And
the word entrepreneur was not a wordI would identify as about two years,
three years, two years ago.Really, I really would never call myself
an entrepreneur. And yet today Ihave two businesses. I'm an entrepreneur.

And that took me time to reallybelieve that and step into that, you
know, And we're what we've beentalking about, and I'm sharing this right
now because for any for you whoare listening it, I understand the struggle.
I understand it, and you dotoo, because you just mentioned it,
right, I understand that struggle oflike when we don't believe we're able

to do something, and how wehave to rewire our brains. And as
I was talking about when I wasworking with Meritith, like I'm telling myself
this story that I'm going to bea business owner, that I am a
big I'm telling myself the story isa true And as I started working through
and you said it's going to behard in the beginning, it was so
hard to believe it. The affirmations, the stories I had to write,
literally sitting and writing pages of whatI envisioned my life to be like as

an entrepreneur. So there's a lotof work that went into who I am
today. And so I want tojust say that because with what you just
said, it really is what youbelieve you become, and that is you
know, I believe I could becomeit, and that's what I became.
And you just mentioned too, likefor you you were at job boards too
back in the day. Oh gosh, my home. Yeah, I saw

myself as a government employee as amilitary person, so to shift into being
an entrepreneur to have my own business. Yes, exactly what you said.
Exactly what you said. That isactually one of the most transformational opportunities in
anyone's life is to shift into becomingan entrepreneur. It's not something you do,

it's someone you become. And thattakes time, and it takes courage,
and it takes you facing those beliefsand going I'm going to challenge that
it is possible. I believe Ican and I will. I love that
this has been so amazing. It'sbeen such a great conversation with you.

What a birthday gift to have youon today, truly was I really mean
that from the bottom of my heart. It's from watching your ted talk,
from reading about you from your site, from everything there, the neuro thing
everybody knows. I am like,I'm just like, this has just been
It really has been a gift forme. I want to thank you so
much. I know that you alsodo workshops, so we're going to be

talking about this on my live show, but just for everybody to know in
terms of your website and everything inthe way that they can meet you and
connect with you, if you couldjust share, it'll all be in the
show notes everyone. But if youcould just share with everybody your website,
any workshops that you do, ebooks, books, How can people learn more
you and the work that you do. Yeah, absolutely, thank you.
Yes. The website is lead outsidethe Lines dot com. That's the name

of the company, and I'd lovefor you guys to go there check it
out. We have workshops. Wedo a three day virtual experience every quarter.
We've got one coming up next week, which obviously will be when this
is already posted, but it's everyquarter, So go to Lead outside the
Lines dot com check out on thetop banner when we've got another one coming

up. We run Masterminds, whichis just fabulous. I love to see
all of these people from different walksof life coming together. They're all visionary,
purpose driven leaders who are out tomake a big impact in the world,
and that's the common thread for allof us. One on one coaching
a whole bunch of stuff. Onething you can do now I'd love to
put in the show notes. Wehave a micro guide on connecting to your
vision because sometimes it's hard for usto understand what is that vision that I

really want and how might I createa pathway to it? So I'd love
to put in the show notes,connect to your Vision micro guide, a
couple of questions to help you openup what's possible for you so you can
take that courageous next step. Awesome, awesome, Well, thank you so
much again for coming on this showtoday. It's been such a great pleasure
to have you here today. Thankyou, Michael. Pleasure has been mine.

Thank you for listening to The MichaelEsposito Show. For show notes,
video clips and more episodes, goto Michael Espositoinc. Dot com backslash podcast.
Thank you again to our sponsor danten Insurance Services helping businesses get the
right insurance for all their insurance needs. Visit Denten dot io to get a
quote that's d n ten dot ioand remember, when you buy an insurance

policy from Denten, you're giving backon a global scale. This episode was
produced by Uncle Mike at the iHeartStudios in Poughkeepsie. Special thanks to Lara
Rodrian for the opportunity and my teamat Michael Esposito Inc.
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