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“This is the time where it's kind of like the things that we didn't get right. We need to start fixing. Not fixing, I would say, but opening up to new paths of exploration because we clearly, we've learned at this point that we can't keep doing things the way that we have in the past for our environment, for social rights, workers rights, children's rights, reproductive rights, the whole thing. We need to make some shifts in order to sustain our evolution with the progress that we want to make. So we kind of all need to take a bit of a reset and a pause. I have said for some time, and this is why I'm excited about 2023 and these next couple of years, I have said that there is absolutely nothing that would get resolved while Pluto is still in Capricorn.”  So says Carissa Schumacher. This is Carissa’s third visit to Pulling the Thread. I highly recommend listening to our introductory conversation—called “My Spiritual Teacher”—if you’re new to Carissa’s work. In it, we talk about how we came into each other’s orbits—through a miracle, I would—and how her presence has deeply affected the last few years of my life. In today’s conversation, we dive right into Yeshua’s recent transmissions—and yes, when Carissa says Yeshua, she’s talking about Jesus, or more specifically Christ Consciousness—or what she calls the energy of peace. I know this sounds odd, but Yeshua—who we’ll refer to as a “he” to keep things simple—says throughout the transmissions: “Know me not as I was, but as I am.” Carissa is not the only Yeshua channel, she asserts, and one of the points of these transmissions is for each of us to cultivate that voice we have inside. The content Yeshua delivers is universal, deeply applicable to our lives today, and certainly not attached to any formal religious culture or system of faith. I find it full of revelations and profound wisdom, insights that I can immediately apply to the way I conceive and understand the world around me. Today, we cover a lot of ground—Carissa dives into the difference between creativity and productivity, and between wisdom and knowledge, and we talk about the seven ways Yeshua says we can recognize power that comes from shadow—and how, like a switchboard, those old era energies are being switched off—and will no longer work in the coming era. Speaking of that coming era, Carissa also talks about what it means that Pluto is leaving Capricorn, and the changes we will begin to see. If you want a grounding in these teachings, I highly recommend Carissa and Yeshua’s book, The Freedom Transmissions, which is eight Yeshua transmissions Carissa channeled over the course of a week, several years ago. And if you want to experience this work in community, I highly recommend attending one of Carissa’s journeys. They are life-changing events. Her website is And for more on Carissa, I’ve written about a lot of these transmissions in my newsletter and on my website: MORE FROM CARISSA SCHUMACHER The Freedom Transmissions: A Pathway to Peace, Yeshua as channeled by Carissa Schumacher Carissa’s Website To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“Look at how we've convoluted and complicated. The most simple things. Look at nutrition now. How many supplements are we supposed to take? How many grams of fat am I supposed to eat? And then grams of carbs, and then how many grams of sugar is taller? It's insane that we've managed because I think a lot of people don't believe stuff unless it sounds scientific or it's extremely complicated. But nature isn't that complicated. Like why do all of these cultures, the few that are around now, indigenous cultures, they don't have high blood pressure, they don't have heart disease, they don't have diabetes, they don't have anxiety, they don't have panic, they have all have straight teeth. They don't also have any big pharma. Uh, they don't have dentists. They don't need any of this stuff because they are living in an environment in which humans naturally evolved.You and I are not, we're living in an environment that is so different and it's no coincidence that the more we integrate back into nature, the better we get.” So says the brilliant—and endlessly entertaining—James Nestor, author of Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art. While Breath is a mega-bestseller—across the globe, it’s also an award-winning work of science reporting, stringing together seemingly disparate streams of thought and science into a treatise on one of the most significant impacts on our health: The way we learned to breathe. Yep, breathe. James makes the case that our tendency toward mouth-breathing works against our very nature, distorting our faces and jaws, ramping our anxiety, and weakening our immune response…simply because our noses are designed to filter the world on our behalf. I loved our long-ranging conversation, and it was wonderful to be in James’s company again. Let’s get to our chat. MORE FROM JAMES NESTOR: Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art Deep: Freediving, Renegade Science, and What the Ocean Tells Us About Ourselves James’s Website To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“There are many places I'd love to see and I know I would learn from. But if I never see them, I won't be sorry. I mean I feel I'm so happy just being here in my little rented two room apartment in the middle of nowhere, Japan where we've been for 29 years. And I would be so grateful if I could spend almost every day here. And again another thing that the pandemic reminded us, I couldn't travel as much as usual. I don't think I really missed it. What I did find was I'd take a walk along the road behind my mother's house and it's in the hills of Santa Barbara and my parents had lived there more than 50 years. I'd never walked to the end of the road just 20 minutes away before. And I did. And I'd look around and there was a golden light of early morning and there's a Pacific ocean in the distance with the sun sentient above it. And I said, this is as beautiful as anywhere. Somebody would go to Capri or Rio de Janeiro to see us right in my backyard. And I'd never thought to look at it before. And so too, with this little apartment, my wife and I just start taking walks in every direction. And we came upon bamboo forests and cherry blossoms, all kinds of wonders. And we'd never in 29 years in this apartment looked around us. And so a reminder that all the beauty of the wonder of the world is right here. If only I have the eyes and motivation to see.” So says the wonderful Pico Iyer, who began his career teaching writing and literature at Havard, before he joined Time as a writer on world affairs. Since then, he has published 15 books, many of which are bestsellers. His books have been translated into over 23 languages, on subjects ranging from the Dalai Lama to globalism to the Cuban Revolution to Islamic mysticism. Perhaps known best for his travel writing, his most recent book, The Half Known Life: In Search of Paradise, is the culmination of a lifetime of experiences in the outer world, intertwined with a deep and beautiful look at his inner world, as he asks himself, and the reader, how we might come upon paradise in the midst of the reality of our lives.  Most of us are steeped in a culture which views paradise as eternally elusive—we live our lives with a deep longing to return to the Eden from which we have been evicted, to a place where the struggles of the human experience melt away. But it is in our struggle that we find paradise, Iyer tells us, if only we have the eyes to see it.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Recalling what we have forgotten… Utopian longings and viable dreams… Creating a life that matters… MORE FROM PICO IYER: The Half Known Life: In Search of Paradise and other books by Pico Iyer Pico’s website  Watch Pico Iyer’s TED Talks: Where is home? (2013) The art of stillness (2014) The beauty of what we'll never know (2016) What ping-pong taught me about life (2019) To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“We're aware that we're in an ecological crisis. We are destroying our own ecosystem. We're aware there's loss of biodiversity, these beautiful species going extinct and who is the prime partner for us is the earth. But you go to an ecological conference like they are having now in Egypt and who listens to the earth whereas the voice of the earth herself, she's not heard, she's not asked, nobody asks the earth. And she is this ancient being. And so wise, she has been through mass extinctions before. Indigenous people knew how to ask and how to listen and how to talk to the earth. And that's why a lot of my writings recently are about trying to find a way to reconnect, to regain this way of being present with the earth, of listening to the earth of just being with her. And so her voice can be heard. Because if we don't make that connection, I don't see how we can go forward into a living future.” So says my guest today, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee - Sufi mystic, PhD, lecturer and prolific author. I have been reading through his books in a type of fever—they are some of the most powerful, and clarifying, treatises on spirituality—and what this whole experience is about—that I’ve ever read.  Vaughan-Lee began following the Naqshbandi Sufi path at the age of 19, guided by Irina Tweedie, who brought this particular Indian branch of Sufism to the West. He eventually became her successor, and moved to Point Reyes, California where he founded the Golden Sufi Center—continuing to expand the reach of his Sufi lineage, making its teachings ever more available to the Western seeker. While he is in retreat as a teacher, he recently launched a podcast, called Stories for a Living Future that is beautiful. His many books provide a detailed exploration of the stages of spiritual and psychological transformation experienced on the Sufi path. More recently, his writing has focused on our spiritual responsibility to the earth, in the present time of transition; awakening our awareness of oneness with the world and all that is in it; and the presence of the amina mundi, or the world soul. Today, Vaughan-Lee joins the podcast to discuss one of his latest books, Spiritual Ecology: The Cry of the Earth, which is a collection of essays from some of our most esteemed leaders across faiths and dimensions, including Joanna Macy, Thich Nhat Hanh, Wendell Berry, Richard Rohr, and Vandava Shiva. As he explains today, we have lost awareness of the sacredness of creation, a loss that has allowed us to abuse an Earth regarded as unfeeling, unknowing matter. This is the spiritual root of our ecological crisis.     He implores us to follow the thread that allows us to once again live in direct connection with creation, noting that real change can only happen when we regain our magical consciousness; grow closer to the lumen natura—nature’s light—and allow ourselves to fall in love with the Earth once more. Llewellyn does a remarkable job of placing our human story within the story of the Earth—in turn, he leaves us yearning to rediscover our place within the whole and thereby reaffirm our primal connection with our sacred home.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: A tree is not just timber, it is a spirit… Regaining our magical consciousness.. The great unraveling of present civilization.. Healthy society needs cultural eldering… MORE FROM LLEWELLYN VAUGHAN LEE: Spiritual Ecology: The Cry of the Earth Seasons of the Sacred: Reconnecting to the Wisdom Within Nature and the Soul and other books by Vaughan-Lee (I love the six-part series on Spiritual Power & Oneness). Stories for a Living Future Podcast Check out The Golden Sufi Center and Working with Oneness To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“How do we actually with due speed, cuz this is a timely issue, start to live in modern culture, which is taken over the planet. Basically live in a way that is really about the truth of who we are. That we are a me and we are a we, and that if we live that way, we wouldn't treat each other as enemies, we would treat each other as relatives. You know, you don't get along with every relative the same way, but if they're in your family, they're your family. And if we then saw all of nature as the family of nature, you know, we would treat earth not like a trash can, but a sanctuary. And, and we would do this together. And we are incredibly collaborative, we're incredibly creative and yes, we can use competition, but what we can do in our competition is make it so we're competing to really deal with, you know, diseases and famine and all the problems we face. So when you win the competition, everybody benefits.” So says Dr. Daniel Siegel, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine and the founding co-director of the Mindful Awareness Research Center. As an interpersonal neurobiologist Dan is focused on the creation of self—and his latest book, IntraConnected: MWe (Me + We) as the Integration of Self, Identity, and Belonging takes his lifelong pursuit to understand the Venn diagram between personal reality and collective identity even farther: In it, he explores questions of consciousness, the importance of connection, and the world of quantum physics as it relates to our relationship with the external world. For Dan, the science of energy, which animates us all, is the study of the continuum of possibility to probability.  MORE FROM DAN SIEGEL, M.D.: IntraConnected: MWe (Me + We) as the Integration of Self, Identity, and Belonging The Developing Mind: How Relationships and the Brain Interact to Shape Who We Are Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation Aware: The Science and Practice of Presence The Whole-Brain Child: 12 Revolutionary Strategies to Nurture Your Child’s Developing Mind Follow Dan on Instagram Dan’s Website To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“I mean, nourishing is truly, honestly, it is, it is, uh, an activism. It is it, the, the minute you are nourished the decisions you make versus when you weren't nourished, they're gonna be really different the way you react to your kids. How we parent, how we are in our, our partnerships or our work. It's like when we're nourished, it's like another, another part of us is being like our truest part, like who we truly are. And so if we can all be a little closer to that, like that, that's the activism I'm tending. You know, it's like that's, that, that really is, that's an advocacy for a culture that's really hungry. A world that really needs us to care for ourselves. It's not just an i it really is a, we, it's a we movement.” So says Jules Blaine Davis, otherwise known as The Kitchen Healer. I met Jules nearly a decade ago, after hearing rumors about this miraculously woman who lived on the other side of Los Angeles: I was told that she could restore a desire to cook, for one. But that her work was actually much deeper than that: That she probed long-held stories we hold about ourselves when it comes to our appetites and their validity, as well as whether we believe we deserve to be nourished. I spent an afternoon with her—walking around her backyard barefoot and telling her about my relationship with food—and left her house deepened, newly dedicated to turning on the fire in my own house, and reclaiming the kitchen as a place where I could be—not as a zone where there was more for me to do. MORE FROM JULES BLAINE DAVIS: The Kitchen Healer: The Journey to Becoming You Follow Jules on Instagram Jules’s Website To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“If you don't change things that we already feel we should change or we feel called to change, if you're holding onto our job alone or to a relationship that is toxic or to whatever, because we are afraid to change, then it becomes stronger and stronger. And when the, the tension is too big, then we call it crisis. Because then the system needs to rebalance itself through a painful process. But there's a conscious version of it too, < which means we support each other in the change process and we create societies and environments that are actually supportive of change and create safety for change. And we can do that together. If we invest in it.” So Says Thomas Hübl, one of the most incredible, spiritually oriented teachers working in the trauma space today. Thomas primarily works with large groups, where his process focuses on transmuting dark, collective energy—typically old, dense energy that’s held by cultures and places. He has worked all over the world in zones where there is much dense despair, using a collective holding space to transmute and metabolize this energy, arguing that it’s essential fuel for our evolution and growth. When we deny this energy’s presence, or refuse to acknowledge what’s happened in humanity’s past, we are stuck reliving these stories and patterns, not understanding where they even come from. The beauty of Thomas’s work is that you don’t need to be directly affected by these stories in order to help move and release them. He explains how this works in his book, Healing Collective Trauma: A Process for Integrating Our Intergenerational and Cultural Wounds, and we dive into the journey here. This conversation was very powerful and moving to me—it’s one of my favorite on this podcast so far. MORE FROM THOMAS HÜBL: Healing Collective Trauma: A Process for Integrating Our Intergenerational and Cultural Wounds Thomas’s Website Follow Thomas on Instagram To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“Now I'm making something that I didn't imagine. It's not going like I imagined, but it's going. And then when you finish the Object Thing book, then it has the power to take you on a journey that you never would have dreamt had you kept the idea in your interior museum. And then that shifts your imagination. You have more, more artwork that's collected in the Interior Museum and but, and then as you grow older, as a maker, You see that distinction, right? The distinction between the beautiful interior museum and the museum in reality of things that you've actually made and done and the stories attached to the making and doing that have changed your life.” I am joined today by my dear friend, Alexandra Grant. Alexandra is a fascinating person and talented visual artist whose work examines language and written texts through painting, drawing, sculpture, video, and other media and has been exhibited at institutions across the country: at Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles (MOCA), the Pasadena Museum of California Art, among others. In 2008, she created the grantLOVE Project, which has raised awareness and funds for various arts nonprofits through the gift and sale of her iconic LOVE artwork. In 2017, she and her life partner, Keanu Reeves, co-founded X Artists’ Books, an artist-centric publishing house, helping artists and readers alike explore the creation of artwork and ideas outside the traditional model of book publishing. If that wasn’t enough, Alexandra is currently leading the first NFT project of the Hollywood Sign for the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and is an Advisor to the Future Verse Foundation. She joins me today to meditate on art and love—as we celebrate the release of her book Love: A Visual History of the grantLOVE Project. A comprehensive history of the foundation she started fifteen years ago, the book is a visual collection of paintings, prints, sculptures, textiles, jewelry, and architecture gathered by Grant and her collaborators to explore the timeless question, what is love? Our conversation is a peek into our regular walk and talks—a beloved routine through which we have been able to explore, reflect, and build an incredibly meaningful friendship. Today we discuss what it means to be looked at and perceived by the public, especially as the partner of one of the most famous actors of our generation; the inevitable disappointment that results from taking the beautiful ideas in our heads and attempting to turn them into something physical; and owning our native talents in the pursuit of a creative live, whether or not we fit into the conventions of being an artist. You have to create opportunities between the cracks, she tells us. Okay, let’s get to our conversation. EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Being in the messy middle… Owning your native talents… Conversing with the past self… Creating opportunities between the cracks… MORE FROM ALEXANDRA GRANT: Love: A Visual History of the grantLOVE Project Explore X Artists' Books Check out her website and the grantLOVE Project Follow Alexandra on Instagram To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“But a life devoted to something larger than yourself is a life worth living. It's a life that is in recognition of life is given to us, it's given to us so that we can give it, we're blessed so that we can bless. We're born, I think, I can't prove this, but I've experienced it to make the contribution that's uniquely ours to make. And when you find that dharma, that discovers who you are, this is a match for what's wanted in the world. Oh my God. It's so thrilling that I wanted to do everything I could to make that available to people, because it's not only wonderful for you, the world needs us now. The world always did. But now the crises are so deep, so profound, so intense, so everywhere. So in every part of society, in every economic class, in every country, in every language, in every culture, that it's all hands on deck. And what a thrilling time to be alive when it's an all hands on deck moment.” so says my guest today, Lynne Twist. Lynne is a world-renowned visionary committed to alleviating poverty, ending world hunger, and supporting social justice and sustainability. Her 40-year career has taken her from working with Mother Teresa in Calcutta, to the refugee camps in Ethiopia and the threatened rainforests of the Amazon, to guiding the philanthropic efforts of some of the world’s wealthiest families. Her breadth of experience led her to found the Soul of Money Institute, where she has worked with hundreds of thousands of people all over the world on topics such as fundraising with integrity, practicing conscious philanthropy, and creating a healthy relationship with money. Lynne first translated her compelling stories and life experiences into the bestselling book, The Soul of Money: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Life and joins us today to discuss her newest book, Living a Committed Life: Finding Freedom and Fulfillment in a Purpose Larger Than Yourself. In the book, and our conversation, Lynne reveals the guiding principles that have enabled her to live as a thought leader and activist, teaching us that a committed life is one worth living: That sometimes the commitment to it alone is enough to ensure it happens. The universe is telling us repeatedly that we are in this together, she says, and in a world that sometimes feels chaotic and devoid of meaning, it’s incumbent that we draw together around what it means to be human. EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Taking a stand vs. taking a position… Pain pushes until vision pulls… We won’t think our way out of this… Replacing charity with solidarity… MORE FROM LYNNE TWIST: Living a Committed Life: Finding Freedom and Fulfillment in a Purpose Larger Than Yourself The Soul of Money: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Life Check out Lynne’s Soul of Money Institute and The Pachamama Alliance Follow Lynne on Instagram and Twitter To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“Boundaries don't tell other people what to do. They tell other people what you are willing to do to take responsibility for your own needs and your own feelings and keep yourself safe and healthy. And they actually are, as we've discussed, a gift to your relationship, they make relationships better. And when you turn it around on its head like that, I think number one, that helps people understand all of the benefits to your relationship when each party does take responsibility for how they feel and for their needs. And it also gives you a sense of empowerment. I think people feel like, Oh, I can't set boundaries because what if the other person won't do it or doesn't say yes? And when I tell them, Oh no, no, no, your boundary cannot depend on somebody else. It is only dependent on what you are willing and able to do.” So says Melissa Urban, a woman who can do everything. Not only is the founder of Whole30, she’s a six-time New York Times best-selling author. Her latest is the subject of our conversation today: It’s called "The Book of Boundaries: Set the Limits That Will Set You Free,” which is the result of helping her community navigate through their relationships to…pretty much everything as they begin to fix and adjust their relationship to their own bodies and food. She is a fierce proponent of self-efficacy and a commitment to showing up for yourself in all aspects of life. In our conversation, we discuss what a boundary even means—and how difficult it is for us to address what’s at the root of establishing them, which is our NEEDS. Melissa guides us through relatable scenarios, like with the in-laws or a boss, where boundaries might be missing. And we talk about the qualities of niceness and how they can get in the way of caring for ourselves: Melissa, who is fierce in her directness, distinguishes between the quality of niceness and the quality of kindness in a very profound way. And it all comes to this: We must first be kind to ourselves before we can show up with kindness in the world. EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Direct not rude… Boundaries don’t tell other people what to do… Set limits, set expectations… Make the goal showing up for yourself… MORE FROM MELISSA URBAN: The Book of Boundaries: Set the Limits That Will Set You Free Check out Melissa's Website Follow Melissa on Instagram and Twitter To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“My childhood was a childhood in the closet. I had some good things. I had some bad things, like living in the closet is, you know, not always terrible. It's simply not the greatest expression of, of who we have the capacity to become, I think. Um, but for my parents, you know, as my father went along in my childhood, he became more and more withdrawn and kept trying to do the right thing, was closeted even to himself. This was a secret he was keeping even from himself for most of my childhood. But it made him kind of a lousy partner. Right. My mother's experience was just a very, very lonely experience. Her life looked on the outside exactly like it was supposed to look, we lived in a nice community. She was married to a lawyer, or, you know, we looked great on a Christmas card, but it felt cavernous, just vacant and left with so much time on her own. Um, she really struggled not to let her memory present her with things to work on. And that led her to be very depressed throughout my childhood.” So says Jessi Hempel, a long-time media and technology journalist, an award-winning host of the podcast, Hello Monday, and author of the new memoir, The Family Outing. Her book is a profound telling of family dynamics, offering lessons on accepting one's truest self. Specifically, it’s the story of a family who comes out of the closet to embrace their queer identities. Even Jessi’s mother, who is straight, lives in a type of closet, Jessi explains, as she nearly became the victim of a serial killer as a teenager—this unconfronted trauma affects her entire family’s life. In our conversation, Jessi shares her journey to emphasize the detrimental side-effects of shame and the non-linear path to liberation. Our conversation explores the value of authenticity and navigating parts of ourselves we have not yet learned to face. She believes that when we“step into ourselves,” culture has the capacity to shift, allowing us all to live more gracefully. Okay, let’s get to our conversation.  MORE FROM JESSI HEMPEL: The Family Outing Jessi’s podcast, Hello Monday Follow Jessi on LinkedIn and Instagram To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“I’m trying to map the territory in the center world, just the way I did with families and the distinction that immediately leaped out was between parts that other systems would call inner children, which, you know, they're very, before they're hurt, they're delightful. They give us all kinds of joy and, and imagination and creativity and playfulness and so on. But once they feel, once you have an experience that leaves you feeling worthless or terrified or hurt, they're the ones that take that in the most, because they're the most sensitive parts of you. And then they get stuck with these, what I call burdens of worthlessness or pain or terror. And now we don't wanna be around them because they have the power to overwhelm us and make us feel all that again and bring us back into those scenes that they literally are living in still. And so we try to lock them away in inner basements, thinking we're just moving on from the memories, sensations and, and emotions of the trauma. Not realizing that we're actually leaving in the dust, the parts of us we love the most when they're not hurt, just cuz they got hurt.” So says Dr. Richard Schwartz, the creator of Internal Family Systems, a transformative, evidence-based model of psychotherapy that de-pathologizes the multipart personality. Dr. Schwartz began his career as a systemic family therapist and academic in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Illinois at Chicago and later at Northwestern University. It was there that he worked with a number of clients who claimed to recognize that they had several components, or parts, to themselves. This discovery led him to develop Internal Family Systems, also known as IFS. Within his model, Dr. Schwartz argues that our consciousness, or personality, can be broken down into multiple parts, each with distinct characteristics that fall under three categories: exiles, managers, and firefighters. Exiles are the parts of us that experience anxiety, fear, or trauma—often when we’re very young. Our other parts begin to protect those exiles from being triggered by events and experiences. Managers do this by dictating how we interact with the external world and firefighters seek to protect us by pushing us toward distraction to numb our pain.  All of our inner parts contain valuable qualities, Dr. Schwartz tells us, but when they are left unattended, they may lead to damaging impulses, causing us to write them off as damaging in and of themselves. On the other hand, when our parts are acknowledged and their needs are addressed, a confidence and openness emerges—what Dr. Schwartz has come to call the Self. It is in this state of Self, that we can begin to heal all of our parts and become integrated and whole. In our conversation today, Dr. Schwartz walks us through the basics of his model and then guides me through an IFS work session. This was very powerful for me. Because the concept sounds heady, I’m glad you can experience the model in action: I hope our work together inspires you to explore the profound awareness made accessible by IFS.    EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: It is the nature of the mind to have multiple parts… Reconciling with your exiles… My IFS session… MORE FROM DR. RICHARD SCHWARTZ: Books by Dr. Richard Schwartz:  No Bad Parts: Healing Trauma and Restoring Wholeness with the Internal Family Systems Model Introduction to Internal Family Systems You Are the One You've Been Waiting for: Applying Internal Family Systems to Intimate Relationships Explore the IFS Institute  WATCH: Dr. Richard Schwartz Explains Internal Family Systems (IFS) To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
"We have offered a model, the seven circles, that helps people to understand that it's not just food and fitness, which so many wellness practitioners purport. It's not just diet and exercise. It's not just the way that you look on the outside or the $90 yoga pants that you can afford, or the fancy studio class or the 25 ingredient smoothie that costs $25. You know, those are unfortunately the images that we have now when it comes to wellness. And that's why so many people continue to feel excluded and uninterested in wellness. It seems so superficial. And so what I hope is that we have incorporated all these other elements to show people that not only can they be a wellness person who participates or who practices wellness, but they are already. We are all on this journey to some degree already." So says Chelsey Luger. Luger and her husband Thosh Collins are wellness teachers, authors, and the founders of the indigenous wellness initiative, Well for Culture. Launched in 2013, Well For Culture was established to reclaim ancient Native wellness philosophies and practices to promote the wellbeing of the physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional self. From their exploration and practice, the two have developed a holistic model for modern living which they share with us in their first book, The Seven Circles: Indigenous Teachings for Living Well.  According to Luger and Collins, these seven circles—food, movement, sleep, community, sacred space, ceremony, and connection to land—are interconnected, working together to keep our lives in balance. In our conversation, we begin to explore these many aspects of health, as Luger and Collins explain how their teachings can be adapted to every life, and how to do so while maintaining respect and reverence for the Indigenous origins of the wisdom and practices they share. We discuss their work to reframe wellness, how to integrate spirituality into movement through intention, and the power of the hollow bone mentality. Healing and wellness is not just a journey of one, they tell us, but rather a journey of family and community: When we take the important steps to heal ourselves, we contribute to the health of all. I was very moved by this conversation, which we’ll turn to now. EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Creating a true connection to movement… Misappropriation… Fools Crow and the Hollow Bone Theory… Creating agreements with ourselves around technology… MORE FROM CHELSEY & THOSH: The Seven Circles: Indigenous Teachings for Living Well Check out their initiative: Well for Culture Native Wellness Institute Follow Thosh on Instagram  Follow Chelsey on Instagram To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“The thing is the type of thinking where you can figure out how mechanical things work. It’s a different kind of intelligence. And I think it's hard for verbal thinkers to understand. And they kind of will look at the shop kids as a dumb kids. Now, fortunately, some states are starting to put it back in. We're having more and more infrastructure things falling apart, like this latest disaster with the water works breaking—you see, a visual thinker can see how it works and how to fix it. And you keep deferring maintenance. I mean, we got wires falling off of electric towers in California and starting fires because they deferred maintenance, but we need all of the different kinds of thinkers. And the first step is realizing that they exist and they need to work together as teams.” So says Dr. Temple Grandin, a New York Times bestselling author, celebrated animal welfare advocate, and one of the world’s most prominent speakers on autism. Temple first came into the public consciousness with her memoir, Thinking in Pictures: My Life with Autism, which provided her unique inside narrative and revolutionized how the world understood autistic individuals. Her latest book, Visual Thinking: The Hidden Gifts of People Who Think in Pictures, Patterns, and Abstractions, works to expand our awareness of the different ways our brains are wired even further as she draws upon cutting edge research to demystify the brains of visual thinkers.  Our world is geared for verbal thinkers, she tells us, with rigid academic and social expectations sidelining visual thinkers at school and in the workplace—to the detriment of productivity and innovation everywhere. In our conversation, Temple takes us through the three different types of thinkers, and argues that changing our approach to educating, parenting, and employing visual thinkers has great potential to encourage, rather than stifle, their singular gifts and unique contributions. As the number of children diagnosed with autism continues to rise nationally, her call to foster “differently-abled” brains is more important than ever—as she so eloquently says, we need all kinds of minds to solve today’s most difficult problems. EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Three kinds of thinkers… Neurodiversity is essential for our survival… Avoiding label lock… MORE FROM TEMPLE GRANDIN: Visual Thinking: The Hidden Gifts of People Who Think in Pictures, Patterns, and Abstractions Emergence: Labeled Autistic The Autistic Brain: Helping Different Kinds of Minds Succeed Thinking in Pictures: My Life with Autism (Expanded Edition) Visit Temple's Website To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“What I'm positing is, is an ability to grapple with contradiction. So that's the paradox mindset that Wendy Smith, Maryanne Lewis and other scholars have shown that when we're able to sit with two conflicting things in our minds, for example that if we stick with the example in South Africa, it may be true that if I'm a student that my parents and my grandparents participated in actively supported apartheid and that they were also wonderful parents and grandparents, right? Like those two things can be true, and being able to sit with that contradiction gives me. Like emotional limberness to kind of, you know, push my way through the, the emotional slog of this is awful. This is awful. And to sit with terrible things happened, that's the only way you can do it.” So says Dolly Chugh, award-winning social psychologist at the NYU Stern School of Business, where she is an expert researcher in the psychology of people and goodness. Her first book is the wonderful, The Person You Mean to Be and she just released a second, called, A More Just Future: Psychological Tools for Reckoning with Our Past and Driving Social Change. Both books serve as inspiring, yet practical guides for those of us who seek to be better. A More Just Future builds on Chugh’s first book, which equipped readers with the tools to be “good-ish” people who stand up for their values. In her latest, she offers a guide to reckoning with the whitewashed history of our country in order to build a better future.  The seeds of today’s inequalities were sown in the past, she tells us, and it will take an extra dose of resilience and grit to grapple with the truth of our history and to make the systemic changes needed to mend the fabric of our country. Moving from willful ignorance to willful awareness isn’t easy, leading to uncomfortable feelings of shame, guilt, disbelief, and resistance when we encounter revelations that run against what we have long been told. But it is possible to love your country with a broken heart, she says, imploring us to grapple with contradiction, employing the paradox mindset as we shift from the rigidness of “either/or” to the nuance of “both/and.”  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Wired for consistency… Light vs. heat-based change… Sitting in paradox… Belief grief… MORE FROM DOLLY CHUGH: A More Just Future: Psychological Tools for Reckoning with Our Past and Driving Social Change The Person You Mean to Be: How Good People Fight Bias “How to let go of being a "good" person—and become a better person,” TED Talk Check out Dolly's Website Follow her on Twitter and Instagram “The Truth About Rosa Parks And Why It Matters To Your Diversity Initiative,” Forbes To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“But my other favorite thing about the confidence piece, as someone who can be very anxious and nervous myself, is that sometimes it's valuable not to be confident. And there is this piece in the book about how everyone would benefit if, when you're making decisions, you start off in an information gathering stage. And instead of being super confident when you're trying to gather data, you turn down your confidence, be not confident at all, be confused, be concerned, be anxious. Gather all the data, as many differing viewpoints as possible. Once you've figured out the right answer with all the humility that you could possibly have, jack up your confidence and then you execute. And this idea that confidence can be on a dial and there's value in not being confident sometimes is something that I was never taught. And that feels very reassuring to learn,” so says Julia Boorstin, who has spent over two decades as a reporter, working for CNBC, CNN, and Fortune. She’s also the creator of the “Disruptor 50” franchise, a list which highlights private companies transforming the economy and challenging companies in established industries. Her first book, When Women Lead, draws on her work studying and interviewing hundreds of executives throughout her impressive career to tell the stories of more than 60 female CEOs and leaders who have fought massive social and institutional headwinds to run some of the world’s most innovative and successful companies.  Combining years of academic research and interviews, Julia reveals these women’s powerful commonalities—they are highly adaptive to change, deeply empathetic in their management style, and much more likely to integrate diverse points of view into their business strategies. This makes these women uniquely equipped to lead, grow businesses, and navigate crises in ways where their male counterparts don’t seem as gifted.  Today’s episode digs into Boorstin’s meticulously researched book as we cover a few of the female tendencies that correlate with great leadership: how women embrace the role of fire-prevention as opposed to fire fighting; their ability to avoid ethical quandaries and group think; and the value of gaining confidence through experience. The monoculture tends to focus on iconic female leaders, she tells us, but there is so much more to gain from focusing on the stories that are not being told, expanding the diversity of images of success for women and men alike.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Female qualities correlate with great leadership… Women as fire preventers… The myth of the confidence gap… Feedback bias… MORE FROM JULIA BOORSTIN: When Women Lead: What They Achieve, Why They Succeed, and How We Can Learn from Them CNBC Disruptor 50 Follow Julia on Instagram and Twitter DIVE DEEPER:  “Better Decisions Through Diversity: Heterogeneity Can Boost Group Performance,” Northwestern Kellogg School of Management Study  “How the VC Pitch Process Is Failing Female Entrepreneurs,” Harvard Business Review “Investors Prefer Entrepreneurial Ventures Pitched by Attractive Men,” Harvard Kennedy School Gender Action Portal “The Remarkable Power of Hope,” Psychology Today “Language Bias in Performance Feedback,” Textio 2022 Study To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“Well, I think of it like the metaphor of the ensemble in a great musical, like everybody has to know their part. Everybody has to give 2000% and everybody has to really cheer on the other people, doing their part or it just doesn't work. And the way I see the map to our soul, this astrological map is we have free will. So we get to play it at whatever level we choose and certainly cultural influences and patriarch and all kinds of stuff messes us up. But I firmly believe, and I've seen it over and over that if we get the help, we need to uncover our fullest expression, people are humming at their fullest best part, which then allows everyone else around them to rise up.” So says Jennifer Freed, a psychologist, astrologer, and the author of many books, including the just-released A Map to Your Soul: Using the Astrology of Fire, Earth, Air, and Water to Live Deeply and Fully. I met Jennifer almost a decade ago—she was, in many ways, the gateway to discovering my own spirituality, because when she did my natal chart, I felt deeply seen and held. It seemed like a small miracle. Jennifer is also a psychologist and so her perceptions are grounded in life: They are insightful, practical, and actionable while also being profound and deep.This is a hard path to walk. Jennifer brings this same quality to her books—you need only have the most rudimentary understanding of astrology to get a lot out of their pages. They are, in many ways, a workout for your soul, and an opportunity to get to know yourself better. And if you do it with or for people you love, you’ll also get insight into why they do what they do. As she explains, astrology is often confined to our star signs and newspaper tidbits, when it’s so much vaster. In today’s conversation we discuss our moon, our rising, and the elements in our chart, which signify how we respond to our life. If you want, head to and get a free natal chart so you can understand the presence of air, water, fire, and earth in your own chart—though it’s not necessary.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: We are all known by the planets… Talking about the elements… Don’t spare the necessary pain… The corporatization of spirituality… Sign round-up… MORE FROM JENNIFER FREED: A Map to Your Soul: Using the Astrology of Fire, Earth, Air, and Water to Live Deeply and Fully Use Your Planets Wisely: Master Your Ultimate Cosmic Potential with Psychological Astrology Check out Jennifer Freed's Website Follow her on Instagram and Twitter To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“I’ve never really figured out how come we stop asking each other questions. You know, we always do that in the beginning of a relationship just to get to know somebody, but then once we get committed, once we get busy, we're busy, busy, then we think, okay, everything is cool over here. I don't need to put energy into it. I'll go to work. And our partners, meanwhile, and we are changing over time. We are changing with history, with politics. We are changing with our whole world as our kids get older. If we have kids as our career changes and we stop asking each other questions, you know, our days become this endless to-do list period. And the only question we ask is, did you call the plumber? Well, yes. Anything else you wanna know?,” says Dr. Julie Gottman. Julie and her husband, John, have dedicated over four decades to the research and practice of fostering healthy and long lasting relationships. The Gottmans are the world’s leading relationship scientists, having gathered data on over three thousands couples to identify the building blocks of love and employing those findings through the training of clinicians and creation of principles and products for couples around the world.  Their latest book,The Love Prescription: Seven Days to More Intimacy, Connection, and Joy, distills their findings to the simple question, what makes love last? Providing readers with a simple, seven-day action plan, the book makes the Gottman’s work accessible to every relationship - no grand gestures, difficult conversations, or multi-day seminars required.  I am delighted to be joined by the couple today as we discuss how to build a fruitful dialogue around the perpetual problems that crop up in relationships; filling your relationship piggy bank with small, but daily, positive actions; and committing to an ongoing curiosity about your partner as they grow and evolve. If both people want to do the work, they tell us, many more relationships can be saved than we may think. Lasting love requires good partnership hygiene, tiny interventions over the course of a lifetime, in order to establish a culture of respect, awareness, and rediscovery that keeps things on the rails.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Accepting perpetual problems… Cultivating curiosity… Dawning of awareness… Respecting anger… MORE FROM JOHN & JULIE GOTTMAN: The Love Prescription: Seven Days to More Intimacy, Connection, and Joy The Gottman Institute - A Research-Based Approach to Relationships Gottman Relationship Quiz - How Well Do You Know Your Partner? Find a Gottman Trained Therapist Follow the Gottman Institute on Twitter and Instagram To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“Sometimes you can't see the full path. And so you don't even venture into the unknown, you know, you're unhappy, you know, you need to change, but you're afraid to take the next step because you can't see the whole path. And so what I learned that night in the dark on the trail in Jerusalem when I had left my, first marriage and I was terrified of the unknown is that it's okay. I could see the next step. There was just enough light on the path to take one step at a time. And after I would take a step, I could see the next step. And that became a metaphor for me, for venturing, you know, breaking out of a stuck place and trusting uncertainty.” So says Estelle Frankel, a psychotherapist and author of Sacred Therapy: Jewish Spiritual Teachings on Emotional Healing and Inner Wholeness and The Wisdom of Not Knowing: Discovering a Life of Wonder by Embracing Uncertainty. In today’s conversation we explore the dimensions of an ironically, more certain state: That of uncertainty, of not knowing, or being able to control what happens next. Estelle is a deep thinker about questions like this, as well as the intersection between spirituality and psychology, and what feel like essential truths to all of us, regardless of the denomination of our faith. I particularly love the way that she thinks about the polarity of good and evil, and the essential components of each. MORE FROM ESTELLE FRANKEL: Read Sacred Therapy: Jewish Spiritual Teachings on Emotional Healing and Inner Wholeness and The Wisdom of Not Knowing: Discovering a Life of Wonder by Embracing Uncertainty Estelle’s Website To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
“Where in your life where you're not saying yes, but there's a, yes. That wants to be said where there's some desire for self expression or creativity or way of being that you're stifling because you're trying to stay in an attachment relationship rather than being yourself. So where are you still choosing attachment over authenticity? If the two are in conflict now, ideally we will form relationships with partners and spouses and, and families and friends where we can have both authenticity and attachment. But if that's not possible, this is the challenge for all of us. What are we gonna choose? Are we still gonna choose the attachment or we're gonna go for authenticity. And I'll tell you, health wise, we pay a huge price. If we go for the attachment by stranding authenticity. And so, as we say in the book, the loss of authenticity inauthenticity, it may not have been a choice to the child. It's not like they had a choice in a matter, but authenticity can be a choice to the adult,” so says Dr. Gabor Maté, renowned physician and four-time bestselling author, who joins me today to discuss his newest book, The Myth of Normal: Trauma, Illness, and Healing in a Toxic Culture. With over four decades of clinical experience, Gabor is a sought after expert on addiction, trauma, childhood development, and unraveling the relationship between stress and illness. In his new book, he brilliantly dissects our understanding of “normal,” exploring the role of trauma, stress, and societal pressures play in our mental and physical well-being.  Chronic diseases are not interruptions to our lives, but rather manifestations of how we live, Dr. Maté tells us. Very few diseases are genetically predetermined, he says, emphasizing that it is our environment that brings any genetic predispositions we may have to fruition. Starting in childhood, when we begin to disconnect from our authentic selves in order to maintain attachment relationships, most of us live a life where some combination of trauma, emotional pain, and separation from self play a major, yet unexplored, role in our health. Without a grounding in trauma-informed study, western medicine often fails to treat the core wounds that make us sick, leaving us vulnerable to mental illness, auto-immune disease, and addiction. When we recognize our maladies not as independent identities but as bodily expressions of mental suppressions, we can become empowered adults who choose to rediscover an authentic self we lost somewhere along the way. It is only through self-retrieval, Dr. Maté shares, that we can truly begin healing.  EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Chronic illnesses are representations of our lives…10:00 Childhood wounds…21:00 Addiction as a coping mechanism is response to trauma…42:00 Soul retrieval…48:00 MORE FROM DR. GABOR MATÈ: Read The Myth of Normal: Trauma, Illness, and Healing in a Toxic Culture as well as other books by Gabor Maté Explore Dr. Maté's Website Follow him on Twitter and Instagram To learn more about listener data and our privacy practices visit: Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
Comments (2)


sorry. Your guest lost me at saying understanding your chart means realizing there's cosmic reasons and it wasn't your parents. My childhood trauma says otherwise. I can heal and forgive them for other reasons. I can see people with compassion and not judge for other reasons. and it isn't some external influence of the heavens or. God or whatever. External reasons are crutches. It's too easy for people to say it's my chart is and never do the real internal work to grow. We grow from within because of how we deal with all the inputs to our various senses (including the senses science is just beginning to understand). We don't grow if we end up in limited thinking due to astrology or religion.

Oct 12th

Jacqui du-Buisson

This episode was so impactful. Thank you once again for your vulnerability Elise. You are an expert at it 😊😘

Sep 21st
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