Lesson 7: Coming Home

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JJ Parker  0:02  
Welcome, everybody. We are so excited to have you here for our last lesson,

Melissa Albers  0:10  
and it's our favorite one.

JJ Parker  0:11  
It is our favorite one. Yo, it's been a journey. We really hope that you've learned some things going through all the lessons. Yeah, I know we certainly have learned things, just teaching the lessons. Yes. I feel that's really kind of a key part of the self awareness journey is, you know, going through it, and then, you know, even re going through it and like being the best

Unknown Speaker  0:35  
students. And yeah, and like

JJ Parker  0:36  
you and I have said we are we are also students. Yeah, I'm in the process. So, this lesson, the last lesson is coming home.

Melissa Albers  0:45  
Yes. Which is my favorite title. I think we've said that on almost everyone.

JJ Parker  0:50  
Almost everyone. So Melissa, let's, let's talk about what coming home means to you.

Melissa Albers  0:54  
Yeah, that's great. If you are holding a copy of the roadmap I would make sure you have that if you don't hop on the website and grab the roadmap off of that. And as we've talked over and over again, about the authentic self in the act yourself, coming home is simply being in your centered, authentic space. And the process of coming home happens multiple times a day, maybe hundreds.

JJ Parker  1:24  
So let's just talk for a second about what what being home feels like. Let's just go Yeah,

Unknown Speaker  1:31  
that's a good

JJ Parker  1:31  
guys. Yeah, we did have a lesson where we talked about the authentic self versus act yourself versus really reflect on what does being home feel like? Yeah,

Melissa Albers  1:41  
yeah. Well give my own example and I would love to hear yours. For me. Being home in my centered space means I feel really calm. I feel very content. Yeah, I mean, I also feel very happy but not that false happy or that external Like over the top happy it's just a really deep satisfaction with where I am. Yeah. How I feel in my own skin, you know?

JJ Parker  2:10  
Yeah, I would say for me, I very similar words, I'd add that things feel easy. Yummy, right? Like there's smoother. You know, there's just not a lot of stumbling around or friction on anything. Yeah. And it is called like it everything is is common. And I agree with the way you described happy It's not like I'm happy because something's funny or I'm being entertained, right? Like Yes, it's just like, deep inner peace, peaceful happiness that just radiates out.

Melissa Albers  2:48  
Yeah, great. And the other thing I would add, which I didn't, but as you were talking, I was thinking, Oh, the other thing is too is that in my centered space, I feel like a lot of my energy Is cycling right here? It's not up in my brain. I'm not like, like going 100 miles an hour. I'm not like feeling this need to constantly be in high production mode. Yeah. And yet I can produce amazing things when I'm in my centered space. So it's being able to pick and choose how my mind interacts with everything else. Yeah,

JJ Parker  3:17  
yeah, that's, that's great. So the idea of coming home is a process, right? Like you said, we go in and out of that state all day long, many times. A lot of times, we don't really even maybe notice. Yeah. Right. But there's a process for when you do realize you're, you're off off kilter a little bit. Getting back so let's talk about that. Yes,

Melissa Albers  3:45  
yeah. Right. And, yes, and that's so the process is, there's a multitude of processes. So the real answer is, it's your own process. That's important, right? What we've done is we've created a process that we think generally answers the call. And yet as we're talking about these ideas that we have for you, it really is the most important that you check in with yourself. And you say, which of the things that they're saying, feel right for me, or I've already got some other things that I've been doing as I've been in the self awareness journey. And those feel really good to me as well. So it's really checking in first, with your own feelings and your own processes in deciding which ones you want to keep. Which ones you want to learn right now, and which ones are not serving you anymore, and you don't want to use anymore?

JJ Parker  4:36  
Yeah, and, you know, things that maybe worked for me. Yeah, don't work for other people. Right, you know, so just take little bits and pieces and write your own process.

Melissa Albers  4:46  
Yes, and I know we both got a couple of stories, but I'd like to draw your attention to the bottom portion of the roadmap, in which you'll see three small circles with letters or with words that start with the letter R. You'll see reflect, refocus. Remember, and each one of these is in and of itself its own process. And we'll break each one of these down more. But I also want to mention that you might find after hearing these three things that you actually do parts and pieces of more than one at once. And again, there's no rules. It's whatever works for you. The goal is to keep you in the place, as you've been learning through this whole journey. Whenever you get out of center, or you find yourself unhappy, or in this act yourself or just not you on your best day, the goal is for you to recognize it to have the self awareness, which is the conscious knowing in the moment that you're out of alignment, and then simply using things to bring you back to your centered space. That's our whole goal. So maybe what we can do is we can talk about each one of these individually first.

JJ Parker  5:53  
Yeah. I was thinking maybe to set that stage first. Yeah, I would share a story Yeah, about my, a little bit of my process like, yeah. So earlier I was telling Melissa about me having to go in front of people and speak, right. So, you know, it used to be when I was younger for sure I had, I would get really anxious about speaking in front of, right, like we both people do, which most field is super common, right? It's probably like the most cliched anxiety out there. public speech,

Melissa Albers  6:32  
actually, it's the number one fear for people. You don't know what the number two fear is what death? I'm

JJ Parker  6:42  
sorry to sidetrack you, and we're back. So, you know, I used to, you know, I'd have to do these speaking things in front of groups. And, you know, I'd be on you know, I was never backstage because I really never that big but maybe on the side of the stage.

Melissa Albers  6:57  

JJ Parker  6:59  
And And I'd feel really anxious, right and I get and you and my body would be Tingley and my head would be kind of spinning and I you know, just like, oh boy, here it is right. I could really feel it. Yeah. And and as soon as I would get on stage like, you know, it would just be hard to recover. Yeah. That amount of reaction. Yeah, right. Yeah. And I was I don't exactly remember where I got this from, but I was reflecting on that situation. Like, why would I be so nervous? Yeah. And I actually heard someone say, the feeling of anxiety and the feeling of excitement in your body are very close to each other.

Melissa Albers  7:44  
Yes. And no true for me to mix them up.

JJ Parker  7:47  
Haha. I said, I thought don't mix them up. Well, that's really an interesting thought. What if Yeah, when I was on the side of that stage, I wasn't actually feeling anxious, I was feeling excited. That's interesting. And then the next time I went out, I checked in with myself before I went on stage. And I was like, that is excitement. I am actually genuinely excited. Yeah, to share and speak. And it would change the whole event, like my whole energy, everything completely different. Wow, it was great.

Melissa Albers  8:24  
Yeah, that's awesome. And you're using sort of a combination of these three, right and starting with, so I'm going to start actually on the end of this page. The last one is remember, and that is talking about remember that your body gives you cues about how you're feeling before your brain does before you have conscious knowledge about what's going on your body is going to give you those cues. And we talked about that in one of our earlier lessons. Where if it's, you know, where if you where you feel happiness, where you feel anxiety or nervousness. And so the very first thing that you were mentioning is you were going right to there you are remembering, oh, my body is telling me these things and it's it's flaring up in certain spots. And what does that mean? So you were taking a moment, and you were remembering how your body was responding? Yep. I think that's really, really interesting because, to me, this is one of the key points to coming home is, is that connection with how your body responds, that is really vital to being able to, in the moment recognize Oh, there it is, again, like for me, like I can give an example that happened just this morning. I had two coaching sessions this morning before we were here for filming. And both of them were with individuals that were extremely analytical people very much in their heads almost all the time. And they hired me as a coach to help them get out of their heads. That's legitimately what they hired me for. And that's a challenging place for a coach like me, because I am not highly analytical as you know, as you've suffered Through

Unknown Speaker  10:00  
the years knowing this,

Melissa Albers  10:02  
but I'm not really analytical person. But I can see them in their process when they're really spinning in their head really spinning in their head. And I had this immediate body reaction both times this morning, when I sense they were more open than normal, both of them. And I had this sense and it kind of came up through my stomach into my chest. And I felt this openness in my chest. And I knew I was at this point where I could say something to them and enter into a different conversation than we normally have. Both times, I felt a little piece of fear cross through me, and I'm just being honest, like I could feel that like my chest went, that's going to push them more than they want you to push them Hmm. Are you sure it's the right thing to do? What if it's not? What if they don't look at that favorably that happened both times just this morning. So in that conscious awareness, the very Next thought behind that was, they're really ready. And they have never been this ready. They're really ready now. And this is going to be the best conversation we've ever had. Yeah, so I had that fear piece for a minute and it kind of bubbled up. And I felt that and then I felt sort of this calming coming over me. So I was very much going by how my body was responding. Yeah. So remembering that the body is such a telltale partner of yours, and how you were manifesting those feelings in your body to when you're going to go.

JJ Parker  11:31  
I really like your story in the way that you're actually using your own self awareness in service of others. Yeah. Which I think is a really amazing way to look at it, too. It's actually not something we talked about in any of the other lessons because we're actually really talking about kind of managing our own. Yeah, yeah. internals, but like, that's a really great yeah, example of how we can help support and serve others. Yes, by our own self awareness,

Melissa Albers  11:59  
and I'll tell you something, almost every single time that I do that, people will say, you're so good at this. How do you know? I'm so thankful for you like they go to that place. But it isn't about me. I mean, it really isn't about me what it is about their own awareness. They couldn't recognize that in me unless they were. They were cultivating that in themselves. Yeah. And boy, if you think about that, as we have this self awareness, journey movement, you think about more and more people being able to be consciously aware in the moment of how their energy is affecting the people that they're working with, especially if you're in leadership or places where you have more influence. It's amazing what can be done and how fast things can move, how quick decisions can be made, how creativity can flow. It's really really amazing.

JJ Parker  12:52  
Great. All right, the next our

Melissa Albers  12:55  
Yeah, so let's go back to reflect. I think most of the time for people People that are in that analytical space, like, I think we spend a lot of time like checking ourselves and X, you know, looking for that validation outside of ourselves and, and like and, and really, really wanting to make sure we're doing a good job. And then immediately when we trip up, we may not say the right thing, or we don't have a good reaction with somebody, we immediately make ourselves wrong. And we go into that whole judgment piece, right? So really one of the top things to do to bring you back home, the minute that you recognize that something's not quite right for you, you're not in your centered space, you're not home, is to stop for a moment and just reflect what are my feelings right now? What are the what are my feelings right now? And what's the subject of my thoughts that got me here?

JJ Parker  13:50  
So yeah, we had a podcast episode, right where I was sharing a story about something that happened at work was My colleagues, right, we are in a meeting we had, we had this big decision that we're going to make on a software package and I like went completely sideways. That's right. That's, that was a very funny podcast. But part of part of part of that story was, you know, me kind of losing my cool. Yeah. And then realizing like, okay, I actually need to take like a little bit of an adult timeout here. And, and, and really get in touch, like, why what was I doing what I mean, why did I react that way and really get back in touch with, you know, my physical reaction how that was like impacting Yeah, my decision making because it really was because it really was and I was not making good decisions. Because I had such a strong you know, physical reaction Yeah. To this meeting, and and what I could have done is just plowed through the meeting. Right and just been a bowled over are over all of these people are doing really fine work. But instead, I knew that I needed to take that moment. Yeah. And check back in and then and then and then after really examine, like, why did I react that way? What were all of those things that so you always funny to react that way Hmm. And taking that moment or or maybe 1015 minutes whenever it was Yeah, totally dig deeper than the initial reaction was really helpful because yeah, I realized that what I was reacting to in that moment that situation is completely different. Yes then yeah, passage. Yeah. And I was really being influenced by these past experiences, which really didn't have any bearing on what we were doing that day.

Melissa Albers  15:48  
No, but what's interesting though, is that as the topic was unfolding with your co workers, and they were asking you to spend a bunch of money in something that you had had a not a favorable experience the last time you did it. No, you're I just want to point out again, your body reacted before your brain did absolutely had a visceral, physical response. And it's it's spun you up, but you couldn't even identify what that was because it was spinning in your brain. My body's reacting, my brain is reacting. I don't know why I'm completely out of my I'm out of my game, my motto my center, I can't do this. Yep. So it's interesting, though, because even in that example, your body was responding before anything else was.

JJ Parker  16:30  
And so again, I think the key part is to, you know, once you realize that, is really take the time to kind of like peel the onion back, right? Because most of the time it's, it's not the top layer, that's the

Melissa Albers  16:49  
top layer or what's happening in the moment is simply a symptom or a reaction to what the real thing is. Yeah, yeah. And I think by just giving a moment reflecting and what Like on the roadmap, it says, What are my feelings right now? And what are the subject of the of my thoughts that got me here. And I cannot explain how many times I have been guilty of thinking something and thinking, I don't want that, like, Oh, I don't want I just don't like with college, like college tuition. For example, two kids college tuitions coming in at the exact same time as quarterly taxes coming in. And so my brain would go, Oh, my gosh, I don't want to have to, I don't want to do that. I don't want to do that. I don't want to do that. I don't want to have to spend all that money every three every three, four months. But isn't that interesting? Because by ruminating on that, I'm simply making myself feel terrible. But my brain, my brain wants to control everything. And my brain says, Oh, yeah, you should really worry about this. Now, the reality was, I didn't need to worry about it. We had sorted it, it was fine. It was just simply the act that was bothering me. So I kept thinking and thinking about it. It's just another example of that our brain and I always say this is our brain is a our thinking mind is a wonderful tool, and it's a terrible master. So, anyway, so that's the reflect. And so just to bring that home reflecting is really when you have that reaction that makes you realize, oh, man, I'm out of my center, I don't feel good. I'm in my actor, self, whatever. I'm not feeling authentic. I'm just downright unhappy. Stop for a moment and ask yourself, what are my feelings right now? And what are the thoughts behind that? What thinking has gotten me to feeling this way? Just take a moment. And then the final thing I'll say about that is as soon as it comes up, because when you take a moment and you ask yourself the question, there's an immediate answer. There's an immediate answer every single time. Don't judge yourself for it. Don't make yourself wrong for it. Don't say and I've been doing this self awareness journey. How come I can't, why don't I ever because there it is. Again, it's The judgment so simply reflecting and then recognizing, oh, that's what these feelings are and, and here's what got me there.

JJ Parker  19:07  
Yep. And if you're me you make an entire podcast as an apology to your co workers reflect you did do

Melissa Albers  19:15  
that. And he actually sent it to the co workers before we release the podcast to make sure that they would be okay with it, which I thought was very kind. Very, very nice.

JJ Parker  19:25  
Alright, so our last are on the roadmap is refocus.

Melissa Albers  19:30  
Yeah. So I think this is a really good specific our refocusing is using the mind that is so used to being used, and it's allowing us to still stay in that mind state a little bit. So the moment you recognize you're off again or something is making you feel really like you're spinning out of control is to stop for a moment and and again, check in what are the thoughts that I'm having, and usually if we're in a space of feeling really, really anxious or The emotion is very high. What I always say are the big waves. By the time we notice if we're having a big wave, our goal here is to shorten them. So they're more like scalped waves. And that all comes from your ability to refocus your thoughts. And I think noticing, too, what are the thoughts that I'm having? What has gotten me anxious? And usually, by that point, when you reach that level of conclusion, in the moment that you're really spinning, you have also reached a level of detail and specificity about those thoughts that are crazy over the top. So what I mean by that is, like, in the example I was using, like with college tuition, I might say, well, that's, you know, $3,000 and $3,000. Is this and I think that this 3000 was supposed to be over here, and what about that and, and so what we do, we have a tendency to do when we get our mind is spinning, is we don't recognize if what we're thinking is actually realistic. And we usually start adding to it, adding to it adding to it and then we have So much of a story. We're telling ourselves that we feel terrible.

JJ Parker  21:04  
Yeah. So we've talked about that too, in when we have a really strong emotional reaction. Yeah to something. One that's maybe stronger than maybe in the situation. Yeah. Once we start just making up reasons why we should feel anxious, or filling in that starts making things up. Yeah. So

Melissa Albers  21:26  
are looking for evidence around us. Here's why.

JJ Parker  21:28  
Because our brain wants to justify the reaction. And if it can't justify that reaction, it'll just start making things. Right,

Melissa Albers  21:37  
so true. And some of us are more creative than others, and it's a really scary spot. But what I would also say too, is here are some key tips that I would want to mention during this refocusing piece is if you do if this is resonating for you this you know, telling stories to yourself and getting into this level of specificity or detail, you actually can start going more global You can refocus your thoughts, refocus your activities, on other things. So for example, if you're really in the weeds, bring yourself out to more general thoughts. And if you can swing them out of the sphere that got you here, that's really helpful. However, it would not be realistic for me to say, I'm having a bad day. Here's the 72 reasons. And then all of a sudden saying, oh, okay, I'm going to refocus. I'm gonna have a great day. That energetic swing is too big, it can't work. But what I can do is start saying, this part of my day wasn't bad. I really like this part of my day coming up, I'll be able to do this. So bringing your mind out of that, that spin and coming more general, a little more global is oftentimes very, very helpful.

JJ Parker  22:49  
So yeah, one some, sometimes I'll view that as, like zooming out the camera. Yes, right now getting microscopes in there. But hey, let's like zoom out and see the rest. The landscape around here, right? You know, my day was terrible. But, you know, the coffee was pretty good this morning and Yes, exactly. More so than it out and you know, there's there are good things. And if you just zoom out, yeah, it's helpful

Melissa Albers  23:15  
because you're creating more soothing thoughts, you're creating more soothing thoughts, and you're creating an easier process for yourself. So that's a really good one. Another refocusing technique that I would add to this is your activity, what you're doing in the moment. So if you are in a room that you're spinning in, or if you're in your car, or if you're with a certain person, or you're in an activity that is, has helped get you where you are, it's a great idea to completely switch segments as I would say it and there's thought leaders that call switching segments a thing, which would be like, just get up and move to a different room. or change your thinking pattern by picking up a magazine or walking into a room where There's someone else in the room and you can shift your energy by starting a conversation with someone new or getting out of the activity that has you where you are locked into that and bringing you more global and changing that a little bit in

JJ Parker  24:13  
the activity. The environment. Yeah, those those things have a big impact. Yeah.

Melissa Albers  24:19  
And and I would say to is to not make that a thing where you're running away. It's not an effort to run away. It's simply an effort to shift the dynamic just ever so slightly, to give you a little space so that you can come back home.

JJ Parker  24:35  
Yeah, I one refocus technique that I've used before is when sometimes when I get anxious, especially like if I have to have a difficult conversation with somebody, yeah, that's really hard for me. Yeah. I will make sure that I have a really hot cup of tea. So I can actually hold the cup of tea in my hands during, you know that conversation. Yeah, because it helps kind of ground me and like yours. Like, it allows me to, as if I get anxious allows me to like check in with my body and just kind of like take my energy, like, back to the warmth. Oh yeah,

Melissa Albers  25:17  
so really physical

JJ Parker  25:18  
and it brings me right back there. I'm like, okay, no, this is like my body reaction causing this anxiety, though, you know, the logical part of the, you know, like, the conversation is not the problem is kind of my reaction around it all. And so some of those grounding techniques are really helpful. Yeah, that's

Melissa Albers  25:37  
really, really good. So those are the three primaries but you know, like, even in the example you were using with your speaking there, you are picking up parts and pieces of this whole all of these different ideas and finding a process that was really working for you. Yeah. So I think I would just let again say to whatever works for you as well. Really, really awesome. This is just these are just key ideas. And we'll be building off more of these in future conversations and other podcasts and stuff like that. But I want to leave you with this is, when you're on the self awareness journey, you're never done. There's so much further to go, you'll start to notice something about yourself. And then a lot of times what what happens to people is they get this new awareness of themselves, and they actually feel a little more open, which at times can make them feel even a little more exposed when they're interacting with other human beings. I just want to encourage you that that's okay. That's actually better than okay. It's amazing. Because it means that you're just learning all of those feelings that you've had in there have always been there. But now you're getting a chance to see them and feel them differently. And I would just encourage you to keep going. Just keep going. JJ and I hope that you have really enjoyed the lessons and the process of learning your own self awareness. And my greatest hope for all of us is that we learn how to come back to ourselves as many times as it takes in a day so that we can be our best selves so that we can be happier, more content and more connection in more connection with everyone else. And it is just my greatest hope that you have enjoyed this process as much as we have enjoyed having you

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