Heather Falenski — Navigating Conflict Zones, Recovering from Chronic Illness, and Being Your Own Light

In today’s episode, Brett interviews Heather Falenski, documentary filmmaker, adventure athlete and humanitarian worker. Her early career included several years of working on the African continent with refugees and others displaced by war. She is the founder of One World Media, a film production company based in Boulder, Colorado.

Heather led a fast-paced life working in some of the world’s most remote and challenging environments. Although her work was fulfilling, it was also physically and mentally taxing. It culminated into a severe chronic illness that left her bedridden for over a year. Heather discusses an epiphany that she had after hitting rock bottom that allowed her to move beyond impossible circumstances to regain health and stability.

“The greatest power that we have is to say: I AM that. And whatever “that” is, it’s what we’re defining ourselves to be. It’s what our concept of self is. We can define ourselves in any way that we want. We can say, I’m a filmmaker. I am healthy. I am respected. And once we hold that state as our dominant state of consciousness over a period of time, the outer world will start to conform and reflect that back to us.”

What we discuss in Episode 43:

07:30     The urge to control outer conditions and why it often leads to failure.

10:30     Stabilizing your inner landscape as a way of getting consistent results in the outer world.

14:09     Unconditioned consciousness as your natural state beneath all of the things that you identify with.

19:00     How to consciously shift into a desired self-concept, rather than allowing it to be dictated by outer circumstances.

29:11     Gratitude as a state of allowing a process to unfold, even if it takes some unexpected turns.

32:04     How hitting rock bottom can lead you to the necessary conditions to completely recreate yourself.


**Full transcript coming soon! Check back HERE for the link.**

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

The Power Dynamics of Fear - Emotion Series #7

In today’s episode, we explore how fear underlies the power dynamics that develop in our relationships with others and within ourselves. When fear is present, we naturally desire to control outcomes by taking on a bully, victim or savior role that externalizes our fear and separates us from our truth. Tune in to join us as we discuss the difference between power and empowerment. We will explore how welcoming the emotions and resistance around undesired outcomes can allow us to exit the power dynamics and show up authentically, leading to deeper connection and more harmonious relationships.

“We all get scared sometimes and so we all also get into power dynamics sometimes. It’s just the way it is. It doesn’t matter how old you are and it doesn’t matter how much you’ve meditated. If there wasn’t some of this tension, we wouldn’t be alive.”


What we discuss in Episode 42:

03:31  How fear creates power dynamics.

06:15  Fight, flight or freeze — the three ways that fear presents itself and the three roles of the Fear Triangle dynamic.

13:03  The different voices in our head and how they influence our behavior towards ourselves and others.

17:15  The difference between power and empower and the ways that it affects how we show up in relationships.

22:22  Choosing your authenticity as a way of dissolving the fear dynamic.

25:10  Brett’s relationship to fear/power and authenticity as it relates to his history in air sports.

28:00  The shame behind the roles in the fear triangle and how it can hold the cycle in place.

**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2022/02/04/episode-42-the-power-dynamics-of-fear-episode-series-7/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Jaime Waydo — Taking Care of Yourself First, Fearlessly Owning Your Desires, Speaking Your Truth and Designing Systems to Support You

In Episode 41, Brett interviews Jaime Waydo, Chief Technology Officer for Cavnue. Previously, Jaime led systems engineering at Waymo, Google’s Self Driving Car program, and collaborated with NASA on the Mars Rover Curiosity.

Jaime came from a mindset passed down generationally that, especially as a woman, it was important to place everyone’s needs — children, spouse, employees — before her own. She quickly realized that this way of being led her to chronically running on empty, which neither benefited her nor her community. She pivoted to putting herself first: speaking her needs vulnerably, organizing systems to support her and designing a schedule that worked for her, transforming her work culture and her home life, while giving her the energy she needed to live life on her terms.

Tune in to this episode to find out how she made it all happen.

“Let’s just look at this like a patient on the table. What are the symptoms? And then, what’s the next step in treatment? And so, solving problems like that and not worrying about whose fault is something, I think is a really good way to keep the shame from cropping up in people and then they can stay much more in the problem-solving mode.”


What we discuss in Episode 40:

1:41   Why it’s okay and important to be selfish.

6:06   How being a chronic people pleaser can result in "chameleon leadership” and create anxiety within a team.

9:23   Generational expectations placed on women to constantly give without having support systems to replenish their own energy.

11:13   The turning point where Jaime realized that prioritizing herself would also allow her to better serve others.

16:00   How Jaime showing up vulnerably allowed her to improve team culture and cohesion during the pandemic.

20:00  Jaime’s techniques for speaking her truth within the context of challenging interpersonal dynamics.

26:26   How Jaime brought more peace and joy into her household by relating authentically with her children.

33:28   Shame as a root emotion behind micromanaging and people-pleasing behavior. 


**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2022/01/28/episode-41-jaime-waydo-taking-care-of-yourself-first-fearlessly-owning-your-desires-speaking-your-truth-and-designing-systems-to-support-you/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Anxiety: A Signal to Unmet Needs - Emotion Series #6

Anxiety is a visceral experience of physical and emotional constriction that is hard to ignore. And yet, many of us engage in a maze of avoidant behaviors in an attempt to do just that. What happens when we see our anxiety as a signal pointing to unmet needs and the unfelt emotions around them? How can sitting with and feeling the sensations of anxiety result in profound internal and interpersonal shifts? Let anxiety be your guide as you tune into this episode.

“To love it, to invite it. I can’t wait to be anxious again. When you’re at that place, that’s the real freedom, where you’re not trying to manage yourself. That’s where the real freedom is.”


What we discuss in Episode 40:

3:15  Defining anxiety from the perspective of the “three brains” — the head, the heart and the gut.

9:15  Why we sometimes constrict ourselves from feeling the unfelt emotions that result in anxiety.

14:27  Anxiety as means of defending our sense of self and a signal pointing to an unmet need.

18:24. The internal and interpersonal shifts that happen when we sit with and feel the physical sensations of anxiety.

23:00  The consequence we are actually avoiding when we operate from anxiety.

25:16  The idea that emotions that we label as “positive” are often the ones we find most intimidating.

31:22  How emotional responses that society deems “unacceptable” can generate shame and anxiety, and can impel us to take action.


**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2022/01/21/episode-40-anxiety-a-signal-to-unmet-needs-emotion-series-6/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Sam Altman — Leading with Crippling Anxiety, Discovering Meditation, and Building Intelligence with Self-Awareness

In this episode, Brett and Joe interview Sam Altman on how self-awareness gained through meditation can be combined with intelligence in business. Sam is an entrepreneur, investor and programmer. He is the CEO of OpenAI and the former president of Y Combinator. 

Sam discusses his experiences with meditation and how it has transformed his decision making and resulted in a much calmer, more joyous default state of being. He explains some of the most profound realizations that he has had about himself and humanity in general through his work with AI. Join us to hear more about how Sam arrived at a place of calm detachment that allowed him to respond to challenging and stressful situations with ease.

“Intelligence and awareness, to me, seem like that have to go together.”


What we discuss in Episode 39:

1:30  A realization that completely changed the way that Sam operates in business, the way he thinks about AI, and his life.

5:04  The moment Sam realized his old way of operating, from a place of stress and anxiety, needed to change.

8:00  How to really care about something while remaining detached from the outcome at the same time.

11:03  The most transformative aspect of meditation according to Sam.

14:40  The experience of non-duality — how it shifts perspective and provides clarity on self, passions and priorities.

22:22  Whether human emotions are possible for artificial intelligence to experience.

29:38  How intelligence needs self-awareness to reach its full capacity.

32:50  How meditation shifted Sam’s relationship to anger and joy.

35:55  How the work that Sam has done on himself has evolved his work culture.

**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2022/01/15/episode-39-sam-altman-leading-with-crippling-anxiety-discovering-meditation-and-building-intelligence-with-self-awareness/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Feeling into the Body

In VIEW work, we often talk about being in our body. There are practices and exercises in the courses where we’re invited to feel into our sensory experience and speak from our our heart or our gut, accessing deeper wisdom beyond our intellect. This can be very confusing for people when they approach this work for the first time. Today we’re going to explore what it means to cultivate awareness of what’s going on in our body and how it can help us access different kinds of knowing and wonder in our lives.

“There’s a way that our brain processes that requires not thinking and being in your body is one of the things that helps that to happen.”


What we discuss in Episode 38:

01:03  What it means to be in our body and why it’s so important for this work.

06:02  What it means to embrace the intensity and how it increases presence and creativity.

09:15  The difference between speaking and listening from the head, the heart and the gut.

13:33  How cultures that rely heavily on one of these types of intelligences can unintentionally cut themselves off from the other kinds of knowing.

20:28  The idea that placing awareness in our body can enrich our sensory experience and intuition.

27:28  Listening to the gut as a way to relieve analysis paralysis.

30:35  How the practice of body awareness can be incorporated within a business or organizational context.

35:46  Emotions and physical sensations as a doorway to the subconscious.


**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2022/01/07/episode-38-feeling-into-the-body/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Healing Shame by Being Ourselves (Coaching Session)

Today’s episode involves a coaching session between Joe and a man in our community who has expressed the desire to have the courage to be himself despite fears of offending the people around him. By exploring triggers and feeling into the shame that underlies conflict avoidance, our guest finds that he can stay in connection with himself, even when others are angry with him.

"To heal my shame, I need to feel it and like feel through it and learn about it." 

**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2021/12/17/episode-37-healing-shame-by-being-ourselves-coaching-session/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Fear: A Path to Authenticity - Emotion Series #5

Most of the things that we do not understand, we fear. But what if the very path we fear also leads us to our most authentic selves? Approaching our fear allows us to go places and understand things that we wouldn't be able to otherwise. Join us in a conversation where we unpack what it means to use fear as a tool and an ally.

**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2021/12/10/episode-36-fear-a-path-to-authenticity-emotion-series-5/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

Carla Piñeyro Sublett on Finding Compassion in Self-Indulgence

In Episode 35, Brett interviews Carla Piñeyro Sublett, Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President of IBM on a heart-opening experience that radically altered the dynamic of her business and personal relationships. Carla came from a mindset that doing self work was self-indulgent. Stemming from that belief, she took on the role of being a manager of herself, her emotions and others around her. Through a sequence of transformative self-discoveries, she uncovered a greater capacity for love that was immediately felt and reflected back to her by her family and colleagues. In this episode, we follow Carla on an exploration of how making space to allow her own feelings to be felt invited others to do the same, thereby shifting the dynamics of her relationships both to herself and others into profound alignment.

"As I was going up on stage, one of my peers grabbed me and he said hey Carla, I am going to tell you something. I said what. He said I love you. That just doesn’t happen. It is wild but since doing this work, not only have I felt differently, somehow it has given people the permission to be their authentic selves and be open with me."

**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2021/12/03/episode-35-carla-pineyro-sublett-on-finding-compassion-in-self-indulgence/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.

What is Selfishness?

Much of the work that we do in this podcast centers around defining our needs and desires — living into our own self interest, while loving it and trusting it as good. This can conflict with some of the programming that we have gotten from parents and society, which tells us that we should strive for selflessness and avoid selfishness. But what if self interest has the power to lead us to a more refined understanding of what makes us happy? In this episode, we will dive into the distinction between healthy self interest and what society calls selfishness.

"All self-interest it seems leads, if you allow it to, a more refined understanding of what makes us happy." 

**Full transcript can be found here: https://artofaccomplishment.com/2021/11/19/episode-34-selfishness/

Follow us on Instagram at @artofaccomplishment to learn more about our guests and share your own experiences.