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Transcript #70: How Conscious Leaders View Challenges


Transcript

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Episode #70: How Conscious Leaders View Challenges

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Hello, my fearless friend. Welcome back to Allowed. I am your coach, Dr. Caneel Joyce. It is the week of Thanksgiving here in the United States of America. While you’re busy making pie, or getting ready to avoid your family members, I wanted to hop on and tell everyone here the exciting news; that season two of the Allowed podcast is coming soon, in January 2022. Can you believe we are almost there?

 

Between here and there, I also have a really special series of episodes related to the holiday season, during which you may be buying some gifts for others. I notice when I go shopping for gifts, I often also pick up a few things for myself. I’d like to give these gifts to you for free. So, you are about to experience the 12 Days of Christmas, right here on the Allowed podcast. I do celebrate Christmas, and I love Christmas, and I also love my clients. I noticed I’ve had so many clients over the years who make incredible, beautiful things that would be a perfect set of gifts for you to consider for all of those people on your gift list, and maybe for yourself, as well. 

 

So what I’ll be doing is, each day of this 12 Days of Christmas series is, I will be giving away presents to support your presence. Cute little play on words. Presents for presence. There’s 12 different gifts, each of which supports a different way of you getting into and supporting yourself in full presence, which is the superpower of every great leader. 

 

I also wanted to let you know that we’re doing something new here on Allowed. If you go to allowedpodcast.com and you sign up to become an Allowed Insider, then you will have instant access to exclusive, free, bonus audio content. We’ll be releasing one of these bonuses with each and every episode in season two. This is a deeper dive. So many of you have written and said that you would like more. You’d like to go deeper and further. Some of us love going deeper and further, and some of us are just looking to be exposed to ideas. So this is a way for you to get that extra juice when you want it. It’s specifically tied to each episode.

 

These audio guides are very short and sweet, but powerful mini personal coaching sessions. So, the intention being that you can take this tool kit home and, after you’ve listened to the episode, you now have something that you can use to apply the skill or the framework that I’m presenting in that episode, and apply it to your own life in a way that’s really, really specific, concrete, and actionable. That only takes a few minutes, but you can use it again and again whenever you find that, that is the skill that you want to hone or apply.

 

You can sign up for that, to become an Allowed Insider at allowedpodcast.com. You will also then find out when we release our 12 Days of Christmas series, and you can find out about how to win one of the presents for presence there. Also really important is to open up your player right now and hit the subscribe button if you have not done so yet. This will ensure that you are notified right away. This is going to be a giveaway, so being very present with the presents for presence series is going to be how you win. So, we want to make sure that you find out about the episodes as soon as they come out, that you take a listen, see if it’s interesting to you.

 

Each of these gifts is created by one of my clients, past or present, who inspires me personally. These are unique items. They are oriented toward the mindful public that considers themselves the leaders of their own lives, who are committed to their own personal growth, and also their pleasure. There are some deliciously indulgent and sensual items on this list, so I can’t wait for you to get to find out about them. Super excited about that series.

 

Now, on to today’s episode. As well as being a wonderful throwback to one of the first episodes of this podcast, and where we were in our journeys back in 2019, right after we launched. That was a long time ago in the scheme of the world. I would like to replay this Thanksgiving episode. This was our third episode ever on the Allowed podcast. We were really still figuring out how to do this together. It was aptly titled, “Finding Gratitude in Challenges.”

 

I was really surprised in listening to this one again, which is certainly among the highlights of my memories of creating this show. I was surprised to see how relevant it still is today. You can’t say that about a lot of podcasts released in 2019. The world is so different now. All of our lives are different. All of us are different. In fact, Heather, our Head of Operations here, said the same thing. She said that she thinks some of what we spoke about on that episode is even more relevant for her in her own life, with the new challenges that she’s faced in this past year. I would say the same for me.

 

In fact, the mindset that we discuss in this episode is one that I have brought into several points of each day that I have lived since then. I really think it is a key explainer of how I’ve managed to make it through to this point now. The past few years have been a whirlwind of changes, and change itself is challenging. There are so many things that have become seemingly irrelevant overnight. Living in this different world requires a new and creative set of solutions and reactions. Our old automatic playbook for how we respond to challenging situations and change, you may have already found that it’s not always working.

 

It’s easy to spot the concepts in this episode. They’re rooted in very firm foundations around gratitude, which we know scientifically speaking, is one of the most powerful mindset shifts, and even behaviors that you can take on to fundamentally change your nervous system and your life. It’s actually pretty easy. What still holds true in this post-vaccine, ongoing pandemic world is that it’s important to practice finding gratitude. Where more important to practice than applying gratitude to your challenges meaning, “Am I willing to feel grateful for even this challenge, and all about it that I seem not to like right now, all about it that seems dangerous, threatening, not for me? Am I willing to even be grateful for that?” I want you to take this on as you continue to learn new ways to thrive as your whole, unique, and lovable self, especially going into what is often a challenging week called Thanksgiving, ironically.

 

So here it is, the third ever episode of the Allowed podcast, our Thanksgiving episode, and one where you get to listen to myself and my “bestie” business partner, Miss Heather Nienaber. Enjoy.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Welcome to the show. I’m your host, Caneel. I’m joined here today by Heather Nienaber, our Head of Operations here, who is a superstar in every way, and has really keep me, my family, and my business afloat, even though we’ve never even been in the same state. We’ve worked together for five years.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Heather, how is it out there today, in Missouri?

Heather Nienaber:

It is very cold. It’s actually November and we’re not really having fall. Today they said it feels like January. It’s in the 20s. So, it’s cold. It’s not the ideal [crosstalk 00:08:51].

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Here, I have flip flops, and I’ve got my jean shorts in my purse because I know I’ll need to change into them later, when it warms up. So, L.A.’s a pretty different situation.

Heather Nienaber:

Extremely jealous.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Oh, it’s so great to have you here today, Heather. It’s really cool that you agreed to come on the show. For our guests, the neat thing is that Heather, and my producer, Elaina, who’s also here supporting us today as we record. We always talk about the content for any upcoming show ahead of time. We gather some ideas. We might gather resources and quotes. We talk about who might be a good guest.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

When we were planning this Thanksgiving week show on gratitude, and I was sharing some of the practices that I wanted to share with you guys, Heather shared that she has a similar practice that she’s been practicing in her, is it a Bible study group or a prayer group, Heather?

Heather Nienaber:

Yes.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

What’s really neat is that we often find these overlaps, even though we come at things from slightly different perspectives. I tend to be more spiritual. You could probably digest my work if you’re secular and atheist. I think it still really rings true. Heather is a very devout Christian; Catholic, correct?

Heather Nienaber:

Correct. Catholic.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Correct. I was raised Catholic. So, we share a lot of similar understandings and backgrounds, but we come at things from different angles. And yet, we seem to always find ourself in the same place.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, I thought it would be neat to bring her on and share some of the overlaps that we have seen, in particular, around this area of gratitude. It’s Thanksgiving week. A lot of us are getting ready to head off to see our family, some family that we don’t see very often. That always comes with a little bit of stress, sometimes a lot, and some challenges.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Many of us will be getting on airplanes, and hoping that our flights are on time, and there are no delays. I know I’ve had many hours laying on the floor of the Oakland Airport, trying to get home to L.A., back when I lived in the Bay Area. By the way, the bar in Oakland Airport is really, really fun the Wednesday before Thanksgiving, because everyone’s delayed, and everyone’s just trying to make the best of it. So, highly recommend that, but I haven’t had to do that in a few years. It’s really nice to be back here in L.A.

Entitlement Versus Gratitude

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I want to dive into this idea about entitlement versus gratitude. I think this is a useful thing to bring into the holidays, in particular because most of us would not describe ourselves as entitled. It’s a really subtle thing when we accidentally dip into entitlement. Nobody’s trying to be entitled.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, I want to offer that as a word that has essentially a technical meaning. It just means that you have a thought that anything should be different from how it currently is now.

Heather Nienaber:

I think a lot of times people think that’s a bad word. They throw it around a lot of days now for millennials, for different young people. I know children today with technology, they throw that word around a lot and people think it’s a negative terminology. So, when we were discussing this episode, and talking about this idea of entitlement, it was very eye opening, I know to me, to hear it from this perspective.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah. What’s the distinction between how we work with entitlement with our clients, and how you think most people think of that word?

Heather Nienaber:

I think it’s getting past those norms and those ideologies that you have on entitlement, and thinking about how you can shift to a different perspective and point of view, and how that shift can change everything about the way you see your life, the world, the people around you, the way you respond to people. It has a big impact.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

It has a huge impact.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So gratitude itself, which is available to us when we’re not in an entitlement mindset, it has a lot of proven benefits. When we’re in gratitude, we have increased happiness. Our happiness can increase by 25%, or much more, according to some measures. Gratitude counteracts depression. It lowers our stress level. It increases our sense of abundance and our ability to attract abundance to our life.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

It also increases our willpower. There’s a lot of really interesting work by Roy Baumeister, and others, on willpower. When we’re in a gratitude mindset, we literally have more self-control. Who doesn’t want more of that?

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

We have happy relationships when we’re in gratitude. It enhances our self-esteem and our sex appeal. It allows for such a more enjoyable life when we can be out of the drama triangle, and in the spirit of appreciation. Not just for others and the world around us, but also for ourselves.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

In my family, we have, of course, we say grace at Thanksgiving. We always go around and say what we’re thankful for. My husband’s family’s not religious at all. So for them, we go and we do a really long deep check in on what we’ve been grateful for over the last year, which is one of my favorite parts of that holiday.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Then at the dinner table sometimes, with my family, we try to say one thing we’re grateful for. Do you guys do that, Heather?

Heather Nienaber:

Yeah. We’ve tried in the past. Things come and go as your kids grow, and practices come and go. It’s always entertaining with little kids, to ask them what they’re grateful for, and you try to model for them so they go a little bit into more depth than you would like, than they do. But little kids will say wonderful things like their snuggly, or their favorite piece of candy, or something really specific. You get into the teens and they’re just like, “My family,” or, “My phone,” something very generic. You’re like, “Come on. Can’t you get a little more specific for me, please?”

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

My daughter almost always says food. She loves food. I know she’s genuinely really, really grateful for the food. She’s four. My son, it depends. It’s varied every single day. Then there are those days where sometimes we’re stumped, “I don’t know what I’m grateful for today.” That’s when it’s actually such a good time to do that exercise, is when you really are in a day where you need to look in order to find something.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I have this journal here with me, that I’ve shared a couple times on social and on my blog. For those of you who are watching this podcast on video, you can see it’s called The Five Minute Journal. Most mornings, I do this. I go out to my little She Shed in the backyard. That’s the only place where I can’t hear anyone else, which as a mom with little kids, is really important for me. It asks me every morning what are three things that I’m grateful for.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

As Heather and I were planning out this episode, I realized that probably the most important, the most common entry in that section of this journal is Heather.

Heather Nienaber:

Awe. I’m so touched.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I’m going to cry.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Heather and I, we have been through so much. She was with me when we were living in San Francisco, and helped us plan our move down to Los Angeles, helped us with our house hunt from afar, from across the country, helped us coordinate a remodel. Going from living in a little apartment in a city, to all the sudden having to fill a whole entire house with furnishings. She helped me keep track of our budget there and track orders, and then even helped me coordinate the birth of my second child, Arrow.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

My midwife knew who Heather was because Heather would help me make my appointments, and helped me coordinate a really beautiful home birth over here. We have been through a lot.

Heather Nienaber:

We really need to meet in person.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

We really do.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I also really appreciate that we haven’t. It’s such a remarkable story. It shows you how connection can happen in so many different ways. The fact that we’ve been on video together, and yet, I feel we have so much trust and ability to work together. Which I credit a lot to your character, and both of our deep passion for what we’re up to.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

But people are always blown away when they find out that I haven’t met you. Most people think that you work right here, sitting next to me.

Heather Nienaber:

I’ve had the same experience, even with talking to our clients or people, that I mention, “Oh, yeah. We’ve never met.” They’re like, “Really? I can’t believe it.” It’s like shock. They just can’t, but you’ve got to credit technology to that, too. We wouldn’t have been able to do this, I think, in this same manner without the video capabilities and the remote working capabilities that we have today.

Finding Gratitude in Challenges

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah. Heather’s a mom of four. Our little girls are close in age, so she’s been through it, and also deeply involved in your church, and your community, and helping to take care of your mother.

Heather Nienaber:

Busy with a capital B.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Busy. Oh, man. You’ve been through, I think two or three moves since we started working together.

Heather Nienaber:

Maybe.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Big house moves.

Heather Nienaber:

Maybe more. At least-

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Two?

Heather Nienaber:

Probably three. We moved a lot for a short period of time. I think we moved five times in six years, or something. Yeah, lots of moves. I moved my mom in that time frame, too. So, I feel like I’m an expert mover.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Now, a house that’s become a project. I remember, a great example of shifting out of entitlement and into gratitude was when you guys bought your new home and found some surprises.

Heather Nienaber:

Surprises, yeah. We bought this house because we needed to move my mother in, and it had an apartment. Actually, we put an offer on it and the guy rejected it. So, we just were like, “Okay, it’s not meant to be. It’s not going to happen.” We were going to move on. We were going to put it on hold and just wait, and knew that the timing would come. It just wasn’t in the cards at the moment.

Heather Nienaber:

We just moved along. About a month later, we got a request from his realtor, that he was going to accept our offer if we were still interested. So, we were like, “Okay. I guess it’s meant to be. It’s on.” So, we knew the house had some work. We knew we’d have to pull up the floors, and do a lot of painting, and stuff. But as soon as we got in here and started working, my husband and I have said, “The only thing that was really in good condition was the roof.”

Heather Nienaber:

So, we found all sorts of interesting things that we didn’t know were wrong with the house, that needed work. And things you think, “Oh, this works. This is going to be okay.” Then you get in and it’s not okay. So, lots of surprises. Still a long term project, but thankful that we’re here. It’s a good long term place for us.

Heather Nienaber:

Even though it didn’t work out with my mom, which I’m sure we’ll talk about in a little while, it’s a good house for our family. It’ll be a good long term place for us, so I still am thankful.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I remember when you first moved in. Every day, when we huddle up, it was a new surprise discovery. Did you find a hot tub in the basement or something like that?

Heather Nienaber:

Well, there was a hot tub in the basement when we went to buy the house. The guy couldn’t believe that we didn’t want to keep it in the house. We were like, “No, of course we don’t want to keep the hot tub in the house.”

Heather Nienaber:

So, he had to cut the hot tub in half to get it out of the house, actually couldn’t even fit it out of the house. But he had tiled the floor around the hot tub. So, once he removed the hot tub, there was no floor underneath it. Then there was no tile that would match it.

Heather Nienaber:

So then it became, we weren’t originally going to redo the tile in the basement, but then it became, we need to take up the tile in the basement. Then it became, we needed a jackhammer because the tile would not come off the basement floor. Then it was the next thing, and the next thing, and it continually was something new.

Heather Nienaber:

But the grateful appreciation that I have from that experience, we were doing all this work ourselves, because to take floor up apparently costs a fortune. It already cost a fortune to put it in, but having them take it out costs a lot of money, too. So, we wanted to save and cut costs. We said, “Okay, we can pull out carpet. We can pull out tile. We can get the hardwood floor out. No problem.”

Heather Nienaber:

I have two teenage sons. We brought them in, and we spent November, this time last year, leading into Thanksgiving, demoing our house and taking the flooring out. It was a very cool experience for our family to do together. Our boys learned things. They were not on devices. We got to spend time together as a family. Actually, last Thanksgiving, last year, the four of us, or four children and my husband and I, so … stop.

Heather Nienaber:

The six of us were in the house and working on it. There’s not much heat. It’s pretty bare. My daughter’s in there with, she was six at the time. She’s got a chisel and a hammer, and she’s chiseling up tile in the kitchen floor, and pulling tile up. My older boys are doing work. We spent all day Thanksgiving just doing work. For Thanksgiving dinner, we went to a 24 hour diner and had breakfast for dinner.

Heather Nienaber:

We’ve got this wonderful memory that, even though it was all a challenging time frame for us, I feel like we made memories that will last forever from that experience. So, it was good.

How Conscious Leaders Look At Challenges

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah, I remember you talking about the blessings that you found in that challenging experience. You’ve always been, for me, somebody who’s so good at staying stable. I think a lot of it is because you’re constantly looking for, what’s the gift in this challenging situation.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

In conscious leadership, we talk about that as looking for, how is this here for me. How is everything related to this issue here as an ally for me and my own learning? We take responsibility for the situations we create consciously and non-consciously know that, even if we non-consciously created a really challenging situation, somehow we were setting that up, so that we could learn and grow in a way that we really, deeply want to.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

When challenging things happen in our life, we can easily slip into a state of powerlessness or victimhood that, in conscious leadership, that would be described as being in the drama triangle, where we’re perceiving life as happening to us and being against us. When these challenging situations come up, we have a tendency to blame or criticize those situations.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

You could have easily blamed the house, or the previous seller, or the agent. There are a million people you probably could have blamed. You and your family could have started blaming each other, or the weather, or whatever. But there’s an alternative view which is that, instead of being a villain, these challenges in our life are constructive in some way. They’re what would be called a challenger, in the technical sense.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

A challenger might be something that’s clearly here to challenge you, like training for a marathon, where you’re going to be overcoming and learning something new intentionally, and you created it on purpose. Or launching a company is another challenging situation that people take on, on purpose.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Then there are a lot of challenges that arrive in our lives which we did not invite, and which may not have immediately obvious gifts, and which actually, are more deconstructive challengers. They take our lives apart in some way. For many of us who’ve been through some sort of a healing or recovery process, whatever that initial injury or trauma was, is a deconstructive challenger. It really rattles us, and shakes us to the core of who we are, and has us pull apart pieces of ourselves that maybe aren’t serving us anymore. Then our role is to put it back together again.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Heather, you’ve always been one who I think can welcome any challenge as something that has a silver lining. I remember you telling the story around Thanksgiving last year. I believe shortly after that, then you found out had no internet. No internet could reach your house. No phone lines were there. Communication was very challenging for a while.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

That was nice because the kids couldn’t be on their devices as much over the Christmas holiday. I’m sure that was challenging, but you got to be together.

Heather Nienaber:

Yes. That was a good thing about this house. We still do not have very good cell service here. So, when we didn’t have internet here, we have internet, but it’s through the DSL, so it’s not the best, and that’s the only option. Yeah, they couldn’t use their devices when they were here. There was nothing they could do but hang out, and talk to us. It was not a bad thing, as far as a parent is concerned, to spend time with your family, and your kids, and know that they can’t be distracted by technology, in today’s day and age when teenagers are all on Snapchat and other social media devices that keep them distracted and their attention elsewhere.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

That was even challenging for us, because we were so used to being able to communicate whenever we wanted to, really, really easily. Then suddenly it was only when you went to that one café.

Heather Nienaber:

Yes.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

That had a connection near you. So, you’d hang out there for hours, thank goodness, because everything would have collapsed without you.

Heather Nienaber:

Yep, thank goodness they have a free meeting room that I can use.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah, that was great. Shout out to them.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

But it also challenged me. It was a wake up call of, “Wow. We’ve got a lot riding on one person and it’s time to invest in putting some more process, and system, and redundancy in place. Because if Heather can’t even have any life events happen without things starting to fall apart, that means that she can’t really take a vacation.” That’s not okay with me. It’s not okay with you. It’s definitely not what we believe in, or how we want to work.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, that was the beginning of a really big push for us, in our business, to push things to the next level and get really, really organized. Which, you spearheaded that, and we found Alayna, and now here we are, finally making a podcast. So, I also think that, that was, you not having any internet for those couple weeks was a real shock to the system, and a spark for a lot of inspiring things that have now happened. I’m grateful for that.

Heather Nienaber:

Yeah. See, silver lining.

 

Gratitude Exercises 

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, tell me about, when we were planning this episode, and you mentioned the practice that you have in your faith circle. Can you tell us a little bit about that and how that works, for those who are interested?

Heather Nienaber:

Yeah. You were mentioning your five minute journal each morning and how you write things that you’re grateful for.

Heather Nienaber:

We had started out, when the group first started, we started with a book, and I came up with that idea to do a gratitude list. That was one of the first challenges that we did. It was not so much three things. It was, let’s do a gratitude list and just keep going. You can’t repeat anything, but you have to keep going.

Heather Nienaber:

So, when you keep going, and you try to make this list that is really everything that you could possibly ever be grateful for, you start getting much more granular and specific, because you start out with the big things. Of course, I’m thankful for my kids, I’m thankful for my friends, parents. You go down the list. You’re like, “Okay, I’m trying to make a list,” so you get very specific and you have a list of 30 people. Then it’s like, okay, now what? Now my home, and you’re on these bigger topics.

Heather Nienaber:

But what was really interesting, our challenge was to do this. Then everybody was to bring their lists with them the next time they came. So, the next time they came I said, “Okay, who did it?” Some were like, “Oh, I only did five a day,” and some were like, “I did as many as I could. I really took the challenge to heart and tried to do as many as I could.”

Heather Nienaber:

Then in the meeting, I just said, “Okay,” I would just name a random number. I’m like, “Okay, so what’s your number 12? What’s your number 48?” Because I wanted to get a sense for, how specific did we get, what kind of things? I found, for this podcast, I was like, “I’m going to go find my list and look at some examples.”

Heather Nienaber:

So, there were things like clean sheets. I’m thankful for clean sheets because there’s something special when you get into bed and your sheets are clean. I’m thankful for giggles; my giggles, my kids’ giggles. That’s a special moment. Or even those belly laughs. Conversations with my kids in the car. If you have a teenager and they’re not driving yet, having them in the front seat next to you when they’re trapped there is the best time to ever have a conversation with them where they’ll actually talk to you. Things like slippers. Things like green grass, instead of brown grass in the winter.

Heather Nienaber:

So, it was really fun to hear everybody’s really tiny things that you’re like, “Oh, yeah. I’m really thankful for that, too.” So, we did that whole challenge, which, it was good. You’re looking at, I’m thankful for more than just big things. I’m thankful for small things.

Heather Nienaber:

Then this year I thought, “I want to do a grateful challenge again,” because I felt like there was a lot of use out of it. But I didn’t want to just do the easy things. So this year, I challenged the group to, every day, write down five blessings that were in their life. I didn’t say anything about not repeating, but write down five blessings, and then to write down five challenges that were going on in their life, and what they could find that they were thankful for from that challenge.

Heather Nienaber:

So, really looking at, what are you having a tough time with? What appreciation can you find from that tough time in your life right now? For someone like me, I look at, one of my children has a disease that is, for some kids, it’s very challenging. For some kids, it’s a lot of bleeding. Some kids die from it. Some adults die from it. You just never know.

Heather Nienaber:

Instead of looking at that as, “Why does my son have to have this,” and, “Why do we have to deal with this?” It’s like, “It is what it is.” I know it’s something he’s going to deal with. I would rather have my child with this than not have him at all. So, you find those nuggets of, okay, this is okay and I’m thankful for what I’ve got. This is what I’ve got. I’ve got him, and we don’t have any severe problems from it, and he’s able to live a fairly normal life, and it could be so much worse.

Heather Nienaber:

So, I’m thankful for what I have in this moment with that. It was a really good challenge. I think it changes your perspective when people have to sit down and think about, “I’m having an argument with my husband,” or, “We’re not getting along.” Well, I’d rather be able to argue with him than not have a husband.

Heather Nienaber:

So, if you change your perspective on these things, it totally changes. Like you were saying, a grateful person is usually a happy person. Compared to somebody who is grumpy is normally unhappy. So, it’s all about changing. I’m not saying it’s an easy thing. Having to look at these challenges and try to find the silver lining, sometimes it’s in retrospect. When you’re looking back you can go, “Oh, okay. I can see how that challenge was for me.”

Heather Nienaber:

Sometimes it’s a habit, too. You have to go, “How do I get into the habit of trying to see things in a better light than I currently do, and understand that these are things that need to happen?” Challenges need to happen, too, for a reason. So, like you said, there’s always learning that can come from them. So I’m thankful for that.

Struggling With Gratitude 

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Challenge seems to live at that intersection of, the universe is a chaotic place where things randomly bump into each other and they sometimes break, and; everything is perfect, and all of these opportunities are here for our own learning and growth. It’s such a gift to get to find a silver lining in a challenging situation, and just see how much abundance there really is here.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

In my life, I’ve faced a couple challenges where it was really, really hard for me to find my gratitude. I struggled. I was so below the line. You know when your whole body is triggered? It feels so irrelevant and inaccessible to get grateful. Kind of like crisis mode sometimes feel like that for me.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

One of the biggest challenges I’ve faced in my life is that, when my first baby was born, he quickly developed colic. For those of you who have never experienced it, that’s wonderful. What colic is, is it’s a syndrome that babies get where they cry at least three hours a day, at least three days a week.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Poor Sorin, it was much, much more than that. It was more than three hours a day. It would be three hours at a time, multiple times a day and night. It was every day. It was very constant. It was especially challenging because I was living abroad. My son was born in London when I was living out there, teaching at London School of Economics.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

We actually moved back to the States when he was five and a half weeks old, which seemed like a great idea when I was pregnant and had never had a baby before, because all I wanted to do was go back home and be with family. I was just obsessed with that idea, that we needed to wrap things up. We couldn’t fly home when I was super pregnant, so that’s why we did it then.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, we were trying to move countries. My husband had very little paternity leave. He’s had to save up his paternity days to help us move home, because you have to fly and it takes time. So, very quickly, after my mom left, when Sorin was about five days old, he started this crying. He was having a hard time breastfeeding. I was really isolated. I didn’t have any super close friends around, nor could I have accessed them, honestly. My hands were full of a baby, all of the time, trying to breastfeed him.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I think the hardest, the memory that comes back most clearly is me being alone in my apartment in London, bouncing on a ball, holding him. He’s crying. I’m crying. I remember looking at my door being like, “Please, someone walk through that door. Please, someone, help me just for, literally 10 seconds would be huge.” It is so hard to hear your child suffer that much, and be powerless to do anything about it.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Because I was new at being a mom, everyone kept telling me, “Sometimes there’s nothing you can do. It’s not your fault.” But I was, I’m a rabid researcher, so I had to figure out, what can I do. There’s got to be something I can do to get him to stop crying. Nothing worked. So, I was probably blaming myself in lots of ways.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

This experience had me, I probably had a certain degree of post traumatic stress disorder from this. I remember, I would often hear a baby crying in my head when there was no baby nearby. If I heard him beginning to cry at all, I would go into a panic. So, as I would lay there at night, it was, every nerve was on edge, waiting for the next spell.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, this wasn’t a great introduction to motherhood. It was a little bit of a small t, trauma, that recently I had the opportunity to process. It wasn’t something I had gone into therapy intending to process, but it came up. The realization that I had in that session was that, the sensation I had was, I was so alone, so alone bouncing him on that ball.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Then in this therapy session last week, I realized that I wasn’t alone. He was there with me the whole entire time, his little head on my chest, and I was with him. I never left him. We were in that colic together. I was not alone.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

When I realized that it was like I suddenly was free. It took my breath away. Suddenly it was like I had walked out of a jail cell that I thought I was never going to get out of, because it was baggage. It was a thing I carried. I do feel really badly that I had any negative feelings about it. Because I’m sure that it impacts the way that I parent, and my tolerance for his suffering is pretty low. I want to be spacious with him and let him hae his own experiences. Also, I just want to be grateful for that, those early days that were, it was really hard for me to find gratitude.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, I am super grateful for all that I learned in that experience. I’m grateful for finally finding some self-forgiveness. I was so lucky because I got to see him. I got to see him right after I did this session. It feels premature to talk through the whole entire thing, but I just held him and I was like, “I will never leave you.” It was so big.

Heather Nienaber:

Yeah.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

This kind of therapy I’m doing, by the way, is awesome if you have any traumas, big T or small t. It’s called EMDR. It’s rapid eye movement. It helps change the meaning of, it helps rewire your brain, essentially, around these deep wounds so that you can reframe them and let them go, let them move through. Things that you think you can never let go of, you can. It’s like magic. It works really, really fast. It’s pretty incredible. Whoo!

Heather Nienaber:

That’s tough. Especially as a parent there are guilt and there are feelings that you get from being a parent, that are very hard to push aside and not feel that way. No parent is perfect.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah. I kind of think that we, as human beings, are programmed to mess each other up in small ways. Every parent is going to mess up their kids. Actually, I think there’s something very adaptive about that, very functional and beneficial.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Because I know that my little wounds from childhood, which came so, my parents were such fantastic parents, so incredibly loving, off the charts incredible. But those small wounds that came from my interpretation of little events or interactions, those helped to shape me, give me my quirks, and my triggers, and my shadows. All of that is what gives me my gifts.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Those strengths come from resolving challenges. So, even though I know I’m, it’s so sad because lots of times I say things in parenting. I don’t know if you’ve had this, Heather, where you’re like, “Oh, this is one of those moments that’s going to mess this up. They’re going to process this later in therapy. I just know it.” I’m like, “But I can’t figure out any other way to do it.”

Heather Nienaber:

Sometimes I’m like, “Hopefully, this will be one of those things that goes and fades into your distant memory,” and they don’t even remember it. You know how the older you get, you forget some of those things. I’m like, “Maybe this will be one of those.” Probably not.

Heather Nienaber:

My oldest is old enough now to tell me ways that he thinks that I parented him wrong, and I’m doing the same to his siblings, and I need to adjust. I’m like, “Hold on. You’re not even grown yet. I’m going to keep doing what I’m doing.”

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Oh, man. I remember telling my parents things like that, too. I was like, “It must suck.” I told my parents when I was a teenager. I said, “It must really suck to have a teenager, because you have a person who lives with you, who just points out all the things that you finally thought that you were done worrying about.”

Heather Nienaber:

Well, teenagers tend to think they know it all and we know nothing, and they’re wrong.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

God bless them.

Heather Nienaber:

They’ll learn as they grow.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah. Yeah. It’s hard to become a rock star without thinking you know it all.

Heather Nienaber:

That’s true.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

It’s a good thing.

Heather Nienaber:

Yup. Learn and grow. Learn and grow. Challenges, failures, guilt, life.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I want to say that it’s also true that as humans, we’re going to experience entitlement. We’re going to experience a sense that things should not be how they are, and that, that is a very valid point of view.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

How to accept, especially in those initial stages, that somebody is going to die before their time, and that so much suffering is happening, and that we are just destroying our planet. How to be grateful for those things is often a mystery to us.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I just want to share that there’s also a way to be grateful for yourself, even as you’re entitled. Grateful for that part of you that really wants things to be different. Grateful for the part of you that can feel the pain of a situation. Grateful that you know that it could be a different way, and that it used to be a different way, and that maybe it will be a different way.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

When you’re nauseous and you’ve got the stomach flu, I remember you guys got the stomach flu last Christmas right after that move. Oh, my gosh, so much going on. When you’re nauseous, and my poor baby son, he’s eight. He’s not a baby. But he had a concussion this summer, so he was really nauseous a lot of the time. He was just so sad like, “I’ll never, ever eat again,” and, “I don’t understand how anyone eats.”

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I remember that feeling from when you’re young and you’re like, “I don’t understand how anyone is eating. It seems like the most impossible thing.” Then, when you’re on the other side of it, you appreciate those first few bites of food that you enjoy so, so much. Or coming in from the cold and, oh, my gosh, a normal temperature room is the best. These things that you didn’t appreciate before.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So anyway, back to me being grateful for all of us in our full humanity. If you’re in that dark space right now, listeners, where gratitude is hard to find, I just want you to know that I appreciate you for being right there where you are, and for having feelings, and for wanting something better. That’s human, too. It’s super, super human and there’s beauty in it.

Finding the Silver Lining During Tough Times

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Heather, have you ever experienced something where you really found it hard to be grateful?

Heather Nienaber:

Well, yeah. I’d say this year. It’s been a tough year, as I alluded to earlier. We moved my mom in, in January of this year.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Into your house?

Heather Nienaber:

Into my house. We had an apartment for her. That’s why we bought this house. She turned 81 in October. She has dementia that has worsened greatly over this year. So, she moved in, in January, was worse than we thought she would be. We watched her, from the course of January to August, really lose her ability to care for herself. It was a very, very difficult time, but I’ve even said this to others, a blessing at the same time.

Heather Nienaber:

So for me, it was a time where I was faced with having to deal with some emotions about our relationship, about losing her and who she is, and coming to terms with the whole cycle of even life and death, and having my kids become scared of her because she’s not the same person that she used to be. My 10 year old really does not like to be around her at all. He’s just very, it’s very frightening for him to see her in such a different way.

Heather Nienaber:

But through all of that, it was like I found a whole other level of compassion. I found a level of, there’s something very, I don’t even know how to describe it. When you have to switch into this full caregiver mode for your parent, and you have to take care of them as if they were a child, and a baby even. I’m talking bathing, and helping with going to the bathroom, and things that you would never even picture yourself doing. It creates this tenderness and it changes the relationship in ways that you normally; gosh, I’m getting emotional; that you normally, you just can’t even understand until you experience it.

Heather Nienaber:

So, yes, it was hard. But it also created this different feeling and emotion for me. It created a different type of understanding for people that are going through this situation. Now that we’re on another side of it, we went through periods where she was very depressed because she knew what was happening as it was happening. I just prayed that we would get past that stage, that she would be at a point where she wouldn’t even know what was going on anymore, that she wouldn’t be aware of that, so that she wouldn’t be sad.

Heather Nienaber:

So, the other day I was telling my father-in-law. I said, “Now I’m actually, the blessing is, I talk to her or I see her, and she’s happy.” She’s happy. So, we’ve come to that other side. At least I know she’s happy. Then there’s this whole experience now. When I go see her, it’s the excitement a child or a puppy would have when they see you. She lights up because she’s like [inaudible 00:49:18].

Heather Nienaber:

Because I’m one of the few people that she really remembers or recognizes anymore. So, seeing me is this beautiful, she really just glows. She’s so excited. It’s really, really cute. Even though she doesn’t remember that I was there an hour later, in that moment, she has this gift of happiness, and fullness, and love, and it’s a blessing. It just is. The reality is there that the end of this is not going to be pretty, that she’s nearing the end of her journey on this Earth.

Heather Nienaber:

But you have to, you just can’t live through something like this if you focused only on those negatives. You have to focus on, “What are these things that I can find right now that are really special and really wonderful blessings that I can pull out of this moment, so that I can live through this moment? That I can process these feelings and make it not be the worst experience that I’ve ever had?”

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah. Yeah.

The Complexities of Family

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Let me know if this is territory you don’t want to go to. Thank you for sharing that beautiful story, Heather. I know that you’d hoped that your mom could live with you guys a lot longer than she ended up staying. I’m really grateful that you were able to find a good place for her to live near you, where she can get more care, and where you can also take a little more care of yourself and your own family.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I know that was an exhausting push, and challenges are not complete by any means. You’ve had the gift of having not just one mom, but two. Are you willing to talk about that?

Heather Nienaber:

Yeah. I was thinking about that when you talked about entitlement. I would say as a little girl, I felt like I was entitled to a normal family. I should, those, I “shoulds”.

Heather Nienaber:

So, I was given up for adoption at birth. So, my mom and my dad adopted me from birth. Then, when I was three, my dad, he passed away. He had a stroke and he died. So, I then ended up being raised by just my mom, and it was just me. We didn’t have any family near by, so as a kid it was, “I should. Why don’t I have a dad? Why don’t I have a normal family? Why was I given up for adoption? I could have had a normal life, probably.” All these, I guess, I’m entitled to these things.

Heather Nienaber:

But as a child, you don’t understand and you can’t, really. It’s much harder for a child, I would say, to look at these challenges and be thankful. Of course, as an adult, I look back at it and I’m thankful that I was ther for my mom because what if they didn’t adopt me, and it was just her and her husband? She would have been all alone. She would have lost him. I’m thankful that my birth mother made the choice to give me up for adoption. She could have chosen another option and I wouldn’t be here right now.

Heather Nienaber:

So, there are these gifts that you’re like, “Okay, I am thankful for these things, that they happened the way they did.” If I hadn’t have been adopted, and my father died, and it was just my mom all these years, who would be taking care of her right now? There’s a reason that I am in this life situation that I’m in. It’s all a plan and it’s meant to be.

Heather Nienaber:

So, you look at it as an adult and you’re like, “I see why those challenges were there. I see all of this.” But as a child, obviously, it’s not something that we can put our finger on. We feel like, “I should be like everybody else,” when you’re not.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I know that you’ve reconnected with your birth mom since then, which is also a pretty neat story.

Heather Nienaber:

Yes. Yes. Not just my birth mom. My birth father, too. They have been in my life for about 12 years now. A funny little side note. When my mom and my birth mother would get together, my mom would be like, “I’m so thankful for you, so thankful for Heather.” My birth mother would be like, “No, no. I’m so thankful for you. I’m so thankful for you taking care of Heather.” So, it would go back and forth. Then I’d finally be like, “Okay, okay. Everybody’s thankful. Let’s just stop.”

Heather Nienaber:

They would just go back and forth, and it was really funny. So see, life has a funny way of bringing it all back together. I often would question, “Why couldn’t I have known these people my whole life? Why did I have to be this way?” Nowadays, adoptions are more open. A lot of people, if they give a child up for adoption, they still get to see that child’s life. They have a part in that life. It’s not as much closed adoption like it was back then.

Heather Nienaber:

So I’m like, “Why couldn’t it be like that when I was a kid?” I just feel like there’s reasons. My life would have been different. Things would not have taken the turns that they’ve taken, if it hadn’t have gone this way. I’m very blessed that my birth family is amazing, and I was able to meet them all, and I have now seven half brothers and sisters that are in my life. I have nieces and nephews. I never had a father, so I have this father in my life. I never had grandparents, and I have some grandparents that are still alive, that I’ve gotten to know over the past 12 years, which is amazing.

Heather Nienaber:

So, it’s been a really, really cool experience. Now, as my mother is, she’s declining, and she has dementia. We all know the road is, there’s no turnaround from it. I know I still have this family. So, that was meant to be, that we would reconnect because when I lose her, at least I have my birth mother. I have my birth father. I still have some sense of family in this world, besides my own husband and children, that I can connect with, and have a relationship with when my mother’s gone. So, it’s all good.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

What an incredible story. This is an incredible story. You’re very fortunate to have all that family and love around you.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I know that, wow, hearing how, of course, the feelings that you had when you were a young child. Interestingly, the way I think I first found out that you were Catholic is, I saw you post on Facebook one day that you were heading up to a rally, which connects to this story, because it was about your gratitude for being born.

Heather Nienaber:

Yes. Yes.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I happen to be pro-choice, and that’s where I discovered that you are pro-life, and I got to learn about it. I think you shared in your post that, this story about having these two mothers and sets of parents in your life, and that you’re just so grateful that you were born. I found that such a moving story.

Heather Nienaber:

It’s very hard to … I know we have different perspectives, but when you were that baby, that choice that could have gone the other way. There’s no way that I would have wanted her to, obviously, choose differently.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Yeah.

Heather Nienaber:

So, I’m very pro-life because of it. It was the pro-life march. That was another huge blessing was to be able to go on the pro-life march with my son.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Oh, it’s so beautiful. I was so grateful to find out, “Wow. I get to work with somebody who, we have a difference of opinion on something. We have our reasons. I get to just love this person and fully understand where this comes from in her,” which isn’t something I’ve had an opportunity to have access to before, living in urban centers here on the West Coast.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, I’m really grateful for you and I’m grateful for that difference, too. [crosstalk 00:57:27].

Heather Nienaber:

Likewise.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

We all coach each other. Alayna, Heather, I know that you guys coach me every single day.

Heather Nienaber:

That’s the kind of culture you want to be in.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

One could easily slip into victim mode about, “Oh, I’m being pushed so hard.” But interestingly, some of the ways that we often push each other on this team are, “You need to stop working so much. Take some time off.” But we do believe so much in each other, and in what we’re doing, and in the power of that. It’s not always easy to be asked to bring more forward, or to be asked to stop getting out of my own way.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

At the same time, we’re human beings. I truly don’t believe that what’s been able to come out of me, what I’ve held myself accountable for freeing myself up from a lot of my blockages so that I can do this work in the way that I’m doing it now, I really think I needed you guys for that.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I really don’t think it could have been done alone. You’re not the only ones, of course. I’ve got so many people that support me in my life; all my partners at Evolution, my therapist, my coach, my coaching group, my psychiatrist. I’ve got a whole team. My wonderful husband, of course, is the foundation of all of it.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

That reminded me of my family, this crazy, old house I live in that’s always, it’s like a baby. It’s always presenting me with new challenges, and how much I’ve gotten to learn about homes and the inside of homes, because it keeps breaking down and having new, weird things go wrong. That’s been cool.

Gratitude and Conscious Community

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

But yesterday, speaking of family, I don’t know where she got this. It was very early in the morning. My daughter, Arrow, came downstairs. Out of nowhere she said; she’s four; she said, “Mommy, you know what the good thing is about cracking your head open?” I said, “No. What is it?” She said, “You get to see all of the memories.” So sweet. I was like, “How far do I push this scientifically?” It was such a beautiful thought. I’m like, “It’s a little different than that,” but on some level, it’s true. On some level, our brain is out there.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

She is a walking beam of gratitude all of the time. She can find a good thing about anything. My mother is the same way. They’re often fast to say, “Well, at least it’s like this,” or, “At least we get to do that,” or, “At least it’s not this bad.” It’s really nice to have those grateful people in our lives. That’s been the change that, actually has been challenging for me to make is to begin really choosing to surround myself with people who are grateful.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

For my own system, I know there’s not much as toxic as being around a person who really is committed to deep entitlement and, “Nothing is right. Everything is wrong. I deserve more.” It really brings me down. I had a lot of self-judgements about that, that I should be able to be resilient, and be with anybody. Then I realized, I don’t want to. It dampens my own energy.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

When my energy is dampened, and I’m spending a lot of energy getting myself back up again, I am not giving to the world what I have to give as a gift. I’m not bringing that energy with me back home at the end of the day, to really fill my home with light, and brightness, and gratitude.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

That’s been hard because I have had so many people in my life that I have deep, deep love and affection for. There’s a difference between one who’s going through a really challenging time, and then one who’s decided to make it their life commitment to be entitled, to be out of gratitude.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, allowing myself to just seek out those people whose energy feels good to me was a big thing for me to get to. The only way that I even knew I wanted that was by beginning to have one or two people in my life committed to gratitude.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, I think that’s, for the listeners out there, if you’re finding it hard, I think a question you might ask is, “How could I surround myself with more grateful people?” Heather and I have both created circles of women who have supported us, and we support them. I think it’s important to be the creator of your own life, and find ways to attract those who are going to support you in being your most grateful.

Heather Nienaber:

Yes.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

There’s so much to be said for the support of a group in helping us to grow. We are human beings. Human beings are mammals. We are animals. Beth Killo of Circle Up, and I talk about this a lot, about how we often want to deny our animal self. But animals, as mammals, we are social creatures. We literally, we depend on each other, literally, to live. We need to be in community.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

There’s so many things that we do need from community. A lot of that, we might be lucky enough that we can find it in our existing friends, our neighborhood, our family, our distant acquaintances, our professional network, our work. But there’s something really special to be said about an intentional group, right?

Heather Nienaber:

Yeah.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

That has specific agreements, and a container for growth in a certain kind of conversation. I’ve been completely transformed by the work that I’ve done in a group coaching setting, myself. I’ve been doing it for the last three years, and I’ve set up a lot of those groups myself, as well. The transformation that I see in a group setting, even though it tends to be much less expensive investment versus individual coaching is, it’s often just much, much bigger, which is surprising.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I think it’s because we let our guards down when we see somebody else learning. We don’t make it as personal. So, we don’t get as triggered or defensive. Our ego isn’t alert and up. So, as we see someone else learn, and someone else get feedback and go through an “Aha,” moment, their learning can be our learning, because we recognize how similar their stuff is to our stuff. We’ve been in similar situations, and we’ve felt that way with different challenges. Their “Aha,” moment can be our, “Aha,” moment and it lands because our ego isn’t defending ourself.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

One thing I’ve been doing recently is, I’ve been trying to create that kind of community for myself here in Los Angeles; another conscious, intentional community. So, those in L.A., reach out to me about that, as well.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

All right. It’s time for questions from our listeners. This topic of gratitude can be a challenging one for many. I have a beautiful question from a dear listener, “I can see how I can learn from being grateful for the things in my life that are challenging, but I really don’t like being around my family. They’re not really kind to me and it’s very upsetting. Are you saying I should keep putting up with this?”

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

No. Dear listener, I’m not. Sounds like you have some clarity about what your preferences are, and that you prefer not to be around your family. You’re feeling like they’re not being kind to you. It’s okay to draw boundaries. It’s okay. I would say that if that’s the choice that you make, which could be an extremely healthy choice for many, then you’ll find more healing by, when you choose to draw that boundary, being grateful in many ways.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I’m grateful for you, for instance, for drawing a boundary that protects your sense of self. I’m grateful for you for knowing what you want and standing for it. If you can be grateful for yourself in that way, that’s awesome.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Another thing is being grateful that you have the space and latitude that you’re able to create a little bit of distance right now. But the big leap would be, could you be grateful for them being exactly as they are towards you? Can you be grateful for the scars, and the wounds, and the strengths that you have developed in the process of interacting with your family in this way? Can you be grateful even for the sadness and the pain of letting go; just that sweet, sweet sadness that tells us that something we love has been lost?

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

This is all an opportunity to wake up to what we love. So, I feel some sadness thinking about this, but I also hear that you’re really, really clear. So, you can be grateful for anything. You don’t need to stay.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

We’ve weaved all over the place here. It was so fun to get to learn about your life, Heather, and hear you tell it all in one place. So, I want to just, we often, here on this show, we often offer a practice, or guide someone through an exercise. So, Heather, I really loved the one that you are doing with your faith circle. Is that something you’d be willing to make a little worksheet for and share it as an offering to our community here?

Heather Nienaber:

Absolutely. The listeners will be able to go onto our show notes and download it as an option to work on their gratitude through challenges and blessings.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Love it. It’s such a clever exercise. So, that will be at caneel.com/podcast-3. There you can find links to, I’ll give a link to this five minute journal that has five questions you can answer each day, which really helps me boost my own sense of gratitude and abundance, and help me manifest like crazy, by the way. The thing actually works. It’s amazing.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Then we’ll share Heather’s beautiful practice, which you can do regardless of your spiritual orientation. It’s a very healthy, life affirming practice that’s truly good for your sense of wellbeing, your self-control, your happiness level, your ability to give to others.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, this week, as you head off into Thanksgiving, look for the opportunities to identify the gift in any of the challenges that come your way. Last week, we talked about triggering and how when we get triggered by others, it’s just an opportunity to get closer to our own shadow, and to learn about ourselves, and find parts of ourself that we have not claimed the beauty and the power of, parts of ourself that we have not yet loved.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, that’s one offering that we have for you on Thanksgiving. Then I think, looking at these challenges and saying, “What’s the gift? How is this here for me?” If you haven’t heard it yet, last week, we posted a bonus episode that’s a preview of this episode that you’ve just got to hear. In this bonus, you’re going to get to go behind the scenes with us through, essentially a blooper reel. There’s also a video available where you can get to see Heather and I interact in real time as we are trying to figure out what the heck to do with our technology, and make sure that this episode actually got to see the light of day.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

So, if you want to check it out, it’s a pretty fun bonus. Just go on back to the last episode. You can find a link to that at caneel.com/podcast.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Hi, everyone. I hope that you found new wisdom and value out of that episode. Don’t forget, season two of Allowed is coming soon, in January 2022. So, open your player and subscribe now, so that you don’t miss any of the new season, or the special bonuses that we have for you through the Allowed Insider program, brand new. You can go ahead and sign up for that right now at allowedpodcast.com, to get the bonus audio episodes that go with each and every episode of this podcast. Those are absolutely free to you; mini coaching sessions to apply the skills you’re learning about here to your own life.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

You’ll also get behind the scenes access and early invitations to events, special Insider Q&A sessions, chances to win free mini coaching sessions with me. I can’t wait to meet you that way. We’ll do this throughout the year, in addition to offering our new Allowed merchandise, which I’m so excited about, and even more.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

This bonus material is completely free for you at allowedpodcast.com. This will help you to get the most out of each and every episode. This season is really designed ahead of you as a really complete arch of a way to genuinely see the results of you spending these minutes listening to this show. I really, really want you to see, and feel, and experience your life at its fullest, and yourself at your most alive. I know that, that involves work. So, this is here as support for you. I’m trying to offer you as much of the same support that I give to my executive, and CEO, and founder clients.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

I also want to remind you about the upcoming series called Presents for Presence. It’s our 12 Days of Christmas, where we will be having a giveaway each and every episode, and you will need to listen to the episode promptly. So please, again, if you have not yet, subscribe, and sign up at allowedpodcast.com to be notified so that you can find out when the episodes come out, and have a chance to win some of these amazing giveaways, really unique and special gifts, created by my own set of current and past clients.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Thank you for showing up every week of season one. I can’t wait to see you in season two. Right at the beginning of January ’22 is when we will be beginning to release those episodes. We’ve already recorded several and they are amazing. We will be starting your year off together here, with a whole new season of material, to make it fun, easy, and exciting to grow, and learn, and change.

Dr. Caneel Joyce:

Please have a wonderful, safe, indulgent, exciting, and curious Thanksgiving. Give a hug to yourself and your other loved ones. Be grateful for yourself. I am grateful for you showing up here. I can’t wait to get to know you more. Please reach out and have a happy Thanksgiving.

 

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