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Bewildered

Author: Martha Beck and Rowan Mangan

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What if we stopped listening to the controlling voice of the culture around us, and instead learned to reconnect with our own true nature? 

Sometimes we aren’t even sure why we feel so bewildered… and discontented… and even downright miserable. Often it’s because we have let the forces of society replace our own instinctive knowledge of what is right for us. 

Now, it’s time for us to find that voice again—before it’s too late.

For Martha and Rowan, Job One is to live according to our deepest truths, making the commitment to feeling good even when it means looking weird. We believe that this is how we will reinvent our world—from the inside out— to create a society that’s kinder, more equitable, and more ecologically sustainable than the one we see around us right now. 

This is the vision that we laugh and stumble and chat and feel our way towards here on this podcast.  Did we mention LAUGH? We want no part of personal and global transformation if it isn’t fun!

So if you struggle to find a place where people who are as idealistic and brokenhearted, as silly and deeply sincere, as bewildered as you are—you might have just arrived. 

Welcome!
82 Episodes
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Beware Fake Urgency

Beware Fake Urgency

2024-07-1044:39

"Quick! Do this now! It's urgent!"  Our culture constantly pressures us to do things that serve the system, and we’re trained to think of these things as urgent. But are they really? In this BeWild Files episode of Bewildered, Martha and Ro dive into the topic of urgency—how there’s a type that will crush your soul and a type that will grow your soul, and how you can tell the difference.  If you often find yourself responding frantically to problems which may or may not be urgent, this episode is for you! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Empty Project

The Empty Project

2024-06-2641:18

Do you ever feel like you’re trying to fit even more stuff into a life that’s already full? In this episode of Bewildered, Martha and Ro are talking about our culture's obsession with more, more, more, and how it's making us overwhelmed, exhausted, and burnt out. Their solution? Empty space! Our culture doesn't train us to appreciate empty spaces, but emptiness is what gives things value. To hear how to shift your focus so you can start noticing and using the empty spaces in your life, be sure to tune in! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Most of us are socialized to believe that if we suffer enough, we’ll be rewarded later—and the reward for our suffering will be happiness. In other words, happiness is something we must earn through suffering. In this episode of Bewildered, Martha and Ro challenge this cultural belief, inspired by the words of 14th century mystic St. Catherine of Siena who said, “All the way to heaven is heaven.” To hear more about this idea—and how you can experience happiness right now—don't miss the full episode! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram  See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Culture teaches us that scrambling up peaks of achievement is a worthy goal—and that when we reach the pinnacle of success, we'll finally be happy.  The problem is, not everyone can reach the very top. And even for those who do, achieving that goal doesn't make them happy.  Wondering how this could be? Martha and Ro offer a theory: We're climbing the wrong mountain! Join them for this fun episode as they break down the cultural myths surrounding success and fulfillment and point you toward true happiness. CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Watch out, everyone...Martha and Ro have F-bombs and they’re not afraid to use them! Join them for this episode of Bewildered, where they're plumbing the depths of what it is to live a good life—and more than a little profanity might be involved, along with plenty of metaphorical golf. (But definitely no literal golf.) To hear Martha and Ro's insights on seriousness vs. levity in life, surrendering to the idea of magic, and doing the opposite of playing golf (reminder: it's a metaphor), be sure to tune in! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Feeling Like an Alien

Feeling Like an Alien

2024-05-0147:41

Have you ever felt like a stranger in a strange land? In this BeWild Files episode of Bewildered, Martha and Ro dive into a question from listener Alia about feeling like an alien when you're among the people you’re “supposed to” feel at home with. Tune in to learn how the spirit of community is different from the simple grouping together of people, and how sometimes differences can be a good thing because they enhance the wisdom of the crowd. It's a thought-provoking conversation you won't want to miss! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Other Butterflies

The Other Butterflies

2024-04-1734:10

Martha and Ro have a very special guest on this episode of Bewildered…Ro's mum Paula! Paula has a mind-expanding story to tell about the time she followed monarch butterflies on their migratory path and learned that 10% of these butterflies always follow a different path—and for an unexpected reason. Tune in to find out the purpose of these aberrant butterflies' journey, why Martha and Ro relate to them so strongly, and why all paths through life, whether "normal" or divergent, are valid and valuable. CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Martha and Ro are doing something a little different and a lot of fun on this episode of Bewildered: sharing about times when they’ve gone WAY outside of the culture.  Because when we all tell each other stories about going outside culture, we give each other permission to do it more! Tune in to hear about invisible whales, public nose-picking, polygamy, and more—plus find out the new name they’ve come up with for their beloved Bewildered community. If you love stories, this is the episode for you! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
On Burnout and Reset

On Burnout and Reset

2024-03-2050:12

Ever suffer from burnout? Martha and Ro have, and they're talking all about it on this episode of BEWILDERED! Burnout is something our culture doesn't allow because it expects us to be productive non-stop. However, our wild natures require “wintering” periods where we rest and reset. If you need to recover from burnout (or you want to preempt it), tune in to the full episode to hear Martha and Ro’s insights and suggestions for getting ahead of burnout and resetting your body, mind, heart, and spirit. CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Get excited because Martha and Ro have a very special guest on this episode of BEWILDERED: their beloved partner Karen Gerdes! While Karen may seem mild mannered and conventional at first glance, that’s just her cover. Karen stopped listening to the voice of culture a long time ago, and she's a dedicated follower of her wild nature. To get to know this paragon of unconditional love, plus learn more about her baffling yet lovable quirks (aka Karen-isms), don’t miss this fun conversation. It's a love fest! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Big Feelings

Big Feelings

2024-02-2101:06:02

Have you been struggling with big feelings? Frustration. Overwhelm. Anger. Grief. These are all vitally important human emotions, yet the culture demands we suppress them at all costs.  In this episode of Bewildered, Martha and Ro talk about why that is, and how our painful emotions help us survive—and thrive! If you want to learn more about "feeling all the feels" and the powerful healing and transformation waiting on the other side of your heaviest emotions, this is an episode you won’t want to miss! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The culture tells us that whenever we achieve a goal, we're supposed to stay there:  “Now you're a butterfly. The End.”  Yet Nature, which we're all part of, is always changing.  In this final episode of their series on change, Martha and Ro are coming “full square” to talk about Square Four in The Change Cycle, which is about relaxing into the fact that there is no absolute destination. Listen to find out how to enjoy Square Four without gripping it too tightly—and welcome the next change into your life.See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Change Cycle: Wild Horses

Change Cycle: Wild Horses

2024-01-2401:03:59

Have you ever felt driven to do specific excruciating tasks, and you couldn’t explain why?  This "wild horses feeling" is present whenever you're working toward your heart's desire, and it's a key part of what Martha calls Square Three in her Change Cycle methodology. To learn the difference between culture and nature when it comes to hard work, and how you can find strength in the struggle, be sure to tune in to this third installment of Martha and Ro's four-part Bewildered series on The Change Cycle. CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Change isn't always easy, but did you know that parts of the process can be a lot of fun? In this second re-release episode from their four-part series about The Change Cycle, Martha and Ro are exploring Square Two—the "dreaming and scheming" phase when the feeling of who you're becoming begins to filter into your consciousness. To learn how to play in the "space for dreaming," follow your curiosity, and find out who you're truly meant to be, be sure to listen to this fun and insightful conversation! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Change Cycle: Bug Soup

Change Cycle: Bug Soup

2023-12-1357:59

Do you know what happens to a caterpillar inside its cocoon?  It disintegrates into a gooey mass before its cells reform into a butterfly. This "bug soup" phase isn't pretty, but it's an essential part of change—what Martha refers to as Square One in her Change Cycle methodology. In this special re-release episode of BEWILDERED, Martha and Ro talk all about Square One and what happens when your previous identity must dissolve.  If you've been struggling with change and letting go, this episode is for you! CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram  See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The culture says it's a given that the people who love you will understand you. But very often, the people who love you don't understand you at all—yet they can have the strongest ideas about who you should be. Martha and Ro are opening up the BeWild Files to talk about how to stay committed to your purpose when your loved ones don't understand it. Listen to the full episode to learn how to let go of the longing for consensus, disentangle love from understanding, and find the people who truly get you. CONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Beauty That Moves

Beauty That Moves

2023-11-1555:01

Martha and Ro are coming “full square” on this episode of BEWILDERED® to talk about Square Four in Martha’s Change Cycle. The culture tells us that whenever we achieve a goal, we're supposed to stay there: “Now you're a butterfly. The End.”  Yet Nature, which we're all part of, is constantly changing. Eventually, you'll be sent back to Square One and the cycle will start anew.  To find out how to enjoy Square Four without gripping it too tightly—and welcome the next change into your life—be sure to tune in!LINKS SECTION Bewildered episode 59: Bug Soup (Square One in Martha’s Change Cycle) Bewildered episode 31: A Space for Dreaming (Square Two in Martha’s Change Cycle) Bewildered episode 60: Wild Horses (Square Three in Martha’s Change Cycle) Ro’s cupholder diatribe (at 03:34 of Bewildered episode 17: Unshamable) Maria Bamford  “Splinter” by Ani DiFranco Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed “Little Boxes” by Malvina Reynolds 100 Foot Wave documentary series “Evolve” by Ani DiFranco Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth GilbertCONNECT WITH US Follow Martha on Instagram The Bewildered Show Notes Follow Ro on Instagram Follow Bewildered on Instagram See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The hinges have come off, folks—Martha and Rowan have jet lag (and they're not afraid to use it!) in this episode of Bewildered: Zen and the Art of Traveling with Toddlers.  On two recent international trips, Martha and Ro's toddler got sick, and things were challenging to say the least... Now Ro wants to figure out if all the suffering was worth it, or if they sacrificed their child's wellbeing for the sake of culture. The answer they arrived at may surprise you, so don't miss the full conversation!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Have you ever bravely shared your authentic self, only to agonize over it later thinking you shared too much? This is something Brené Brown calls a "vulnerability hangover”—and we've all been there. In this episode from THE BEST OF BEWILDERED, Martha and Ro share their own experiences with vulnerability hangovers and reveal the "culture work" that’s brought them massive liberation.  Feeling hungover from vulnerability? Then be sure to tune in for the full episode—it's one of Martha and Ro's favorites!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
It's THE BEST OF BEWILDERED, and this week we’re revisiting another favorite episode from the vault: Making the Right Choice. The culture believes there’s always a single right choice and that choosing wrong means you've wasted your entire life. So is it any wonder a lot of us freeze in panic when faced with making a decision? Martha and Ro talk about how we can move past this "decision paralysis" and they offer a wild new way to view decision-making. It's an insightful conversation worth hearing again!See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
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Comments (9)

Moni 3

check out this for more details 9xflix web series

Jun 15th
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Pam Longston

Love, love, love the laughter and fun these two have while demonstrating in real time bow to work through procrastination (or is it procrastibation?)

Dec 9th
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Elizabeth Whiteman

Hetero marriage and families are not going away, so best to figure out how to make them work better for women. I feel that it is in my nature to be married with children (and I am) but my husband and I are creative about making it work for me so that I'm rested and fulfilled. We need to make this easier for women at all income levels.

Aug 30th
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Katie Down

ooh, I'm listening at about 41 minutes, and my first thought is I don't agree. Institutions can deny individuals access to safety and sustenance. It's not feasible for large numbers of people to go off grid and sustain themselves without institution infrastructure. More personally (sample size of 1, lol), I have to (as do many chronic babes) engage with the institution that is the Australian health system because the alternative is death, and I'm not ready to shuffle off yet*. so, choice 1: live, precludes turning away from big ol' institutions. *less about fear of death than about having a long-arse list of fun things to do. 😃 🧡

Jun 16th
Reply (2)

Pam Longston

Really helps me to figure things out! Love the fun notes on each episode. The insights are given with love and warmth, and these Teo have a lot of fun together.

Apr 7th
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Jessica Landini

Are we getting more episodes soon? Just found these and I love the practices you teach!

Jun 15th
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Cid Lough

Wisdom aplenty and moments that had me laughing outloud in every episode! I think Martha and Ro have the BEST timing and energy, and this feels like sitting in on conversations between the two of them. It’s my favorite!! Thank you both! 💜 #gonadofgoat

Mar 1st
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