Episode 2 - Katie McLelland

Uncategorized Dec 16, 2020

Brandon: [00:00:06] Welcome to the real secrets of magic. A show about playing with possibilities and discovering the practices to create them. I'm your host, Brandon Love, and today on the show with me, I've got Katie McClelland, founder and owner of De La Sol yoga studios in Hamilton, Ontario.   Hi Katie, thanks for joining me here today.

Katie: [00:00:29] Thank you. You know, I love any opportunity to sit and have a conversation with you. So I really appreciate being asked to be on this. It's always great spending time with you. I always learn something.

Brandon: [00:00:41] And so do I, and I that's exactly why I thought you'd be an excellent fit for, for this podcast where we explore not magic tricks, of course, but the real secrets of making magic.

 Can you tell our viewers and listeners a little bit more about the magic that you've made?

Katie: [00:00:58] Well, it's funny as [00:01:00] you're talking now, you know, you and I have talked about magic so many times, but just now in this moment, as you're talking about it, I instantly recalled my relationship to magic when I was a kid.

And, I was a big believer in anything mythical, anything, you know, imagination wise. I had a really vivid imagination. And, I remember playing games with, with my friends where I would, I would say that there was a spirit trapped in a tree and we had to do this sort of ceremony to release the spirit from the tree.

And I would get everybody on board with this. I also thought that my dolls came alive at night and, you know, I would try to set up these elaborate sort of traps so that when I would wake up in the morning, I would see that something had been moved and I would know that they were coming alive. I, I funny story is that I actually believed in Santa and the Easter bunny and the tooth fairy until I was well [00:02:00] into puberty.

I was like 12. I don't know. I don't want to say I was 13. I couldn't have been 13, but I was definitely 11 or 12 and I was still wholeheartedly believing in these mythical characters. And I was getting bullied at school because I was defending their existence. At one point I even developed, like an ongoing relationship with the tooth fairy, where I would leave a note under my pillow every single night, regardless of whether or not I had a tooth.

And I would reveal all my deepest, darkest, you know, thoughts and innermost secrets. And my parents were getting no sleep during this time because they'd have to come and read the letter and put something under my pillow and.. I was really devastated when I found out Santa Claus, wasn't real. My parents actually took me out for dinner to break the news to me.

And I remember I had one of those 1980s iceberg lettuce salads with like the bright orange, French dressing on it. And I remember the tears falling into the [00:03:00] salad as they, as they broke the news to me. And there were some moments along the way where I really, really was disillusioned and lost my belief in magic.

And, I, instead of just taking this sort of realistic view and easing my way into adulthood, I actually became really jaded and I stopped believing in anything. We talked about the powers you wanted to have as kids. I remember I wrote - it was like in the back of a comic book and you would check off the powers you want it to have. Of course, I wanted to be invisible.

I wanted x-ray glasses. I wanted to be able to fly. And I took all my money out of my piggy bank. And I mailed all the coins in a big envelope with my, with my order form filled out. And of course I never heard back. So things like this, I remember being, becoming so disillusioned when I was younger. And [00:04:00] you know, I ended up addicted to drugs and I, I honest to God believe that part of my descent into drug addiction was this initial, like jadedness that occurred where I just decided to stop believing.

And, I feel like my journey out of addiction and into wholeness - and of course it's an ongoing journey -  a big piece of that had to start with believing in magic again. Believing that life is magical, that miracles do happen, that perhaps there's some sort of order in the universe. Maybe there's a benevolent force or a guide looking out for me, being willing to see synchronicities and to recognize signs and maybe use them as marker points on my path.

 And just to bring that joy and that innocence and that playfulness back into life.  For a while there, I was [00:05:00] using drugs to, to bring me that feeling of, of magic again, because I couldn't access that feeling within myself.  And I know you started off asking me about my life now, so I don't know if you want me to give it a little bit of a snapshot.

Brandon: [00:05:17] Yeah. Yeah. That's probably a good idea. Yeah. Let's, let's hear about where you, where you are now and when then we'll go back and visit how you, how you got there.

Katie: [00:05:24] So, you know, when I give my public talks, which of course you've coached and mentored me on, I give a snapshot of my life now or pre-COVID, which, you know, every time I speak it, I'm blown away by how incredibly full and blessed my life is. So I, I own two yoga studios. 50 employees between the two, anywhere from  - before COVID, you know - two to 400 students a day coming through the doors of these studios.

So just really robust communities of yoga [00:06:00] practitioners and yoga teachers. And, I, I facilitate the yoga teacher training, of course, which is a passion of mine. You went through the course, there's been well over 360 people that have gone through the program. And, I, I met my husband, 13 years ago at my studio, Andre.

So he, he came in as a student and, we've been together ever since. And we have a house in the Locke street area, which is a great area in Hamilton. We have a six year old son named Evander. And, I do some public speaking. I have a yoga TV show called yoga with Katie and my relationship with my parents, you know, they've been together 57 years and they're just such, they're, they're the best example of any couple I've ever met who's truly in a passionate, authentic, real loving relationship where they communicate, they argue, they make up, they grow [00:07:00] together. They, I mean, it's just, it's incredible to witness like what they model, you know, in terms of a long-term relationship.

And then my sister, Melissa is three years younger than me. She's in the band Whitehorse so she's a really talented and successful musician. So I have a great relationship with them. And a great circle of female friends, just inspiring women who all they want to do is lift one another up and laugh together and be real together and enjoy life and set goals.

And I couldn't have imagined a more beautiful life. So I feel really blessed for where I'm at now. I'm 44 years old and I'm really in a good place from, from that standpoint, you know?

Brandon: [00:07:45] Super cool stuff. Like you're really making waves and, and doing good for, for people and, and for yourself, it sounds, You know, I get asked as a magician.

I get asked all the time, how did you do it? and [00:08:00] so it's kind of fun for me in this podcast to ask you, how did you end up here? Like you mentioned the drug addiction earlier, how do you get from there to this magic?

Katie: [00:08:11] Hm. So, I think. You know, I, I really, a turning point for me was when I turned 30 and I had made such a mess of my twenties.

I'd burned so many bridges with the people that I loved. I was damaging my health, you know, I'd been addicted to crystal meth at that point for 10 years. I, I actually went to rehab when I was 26, but even at age 30, there were still some repetitive patterns going on. A lot of self-sabotage addictive behavior.

And, it was, I looked at my twenties and I just thought, God, like, I'm lucky enough that I didn't die of an overdose. I'm still here. I have my faculties, my brain is functioning and I'm able to form [00:09:00] sentences. I didn't damage my brain so much that I, you know, I can't function. My body's healthy. So what do I want the next decade of my life to look like?

And what do I need to do to make that happen? And it was, it was a real intentional moment for me. I was determined to not repeat the same patterns that I had done in my twenties. And interestingly enough, the first piece of that for me is a lot of what I teach. It's sort of paradoxical in that the first thing that I had to do was I had to forgive myself for all of the self-sabotage and the failures and the repeated patterns.

And I had to even extend a hand of patience and compassion towards myself, knowing that even if I continue to repeat some of these into my thirties. I think the problem in my twenties is I was filled with so much self-hatred and so much shame and so much self-loathing. And I would set the bar [00:10:00] impossibly high for myself.

And so any little failure would just derail me completely, you know. It's like people that go on a diet and they go from, you know, binge eating to "okay, I'm going to do this cabbage soup diet that's extremely restrictive and I'm only going to have 600 calories a day." And so then they cheat a little bit and they have a cookie and they think, "Oh, well, there's just no point in doing this. I'm just going to throw in the towel and eat the whole box of cookies. And then just go right back to my binge eating."

I had to realize like there's a spectrum in terms of improving yourself and elevating yourself. The trajectory on the graph is not a straight line upwards. It isn't for anyone. There's always setbacks.

There's always dips. There's always periods of coasting. But what I had to do was I had to bring the self-love piece and the self-acceptance and the inner friendship that I was cultivating with myself that had to be non-negotiable, you know, so that . . Even if I [00:11:00] messed up where I - I may not be able to catch myself before the mess up or the relapse or whatever it may be. But immediately afterwards, that's where I had to be super present and super aware and catch myself before I allowed that little slip up to take me into, you know, a spiral of self hatred and shame and all that negative inner dialogue.

Brandon: [00:11:24] You have to catch yourself before you start down that slippery spirally self-loathing trail.

Katie: [00:11:31] And just, you know, this is one thing that I'm not crazy about with the 12 step program. And I did, you know, I went to rehab and I did the 90 days or 90 meetings in 90 days, which is what they recommend, which is really intense, you know? Cause you're so broken and your health is like, your brain's rewiring itself, you're exhausted.

You're drained. You don't even remember who you are, who you were, and you had commit to going to an AA meeting every day for 90 days. So it's [00:12:00] pretty, you know, it takes a lot out of you, but it was really great for me because it gave me just one thing that I had to accomplish every day. And if I went to that meeting, I could call it a successful day.

So I didn't have to figure out my career. I didn't have to -  it wasn't anything big, you know, like that I could fail at. It was like, get up out of bed, brush my teeth and get to a meeting. And that was it. A lot of the 12 steps were really useful for me. But one thing I really didn't like about the program was, you know, if you had a relapse, you had to give your chip in.

So if I had 68 days of sobriety or I had 365 days of sobriety, if I had one sip of alcohol or one puff of a joint or whatever it was. I had to go all the way back to zero and start over again. And for me that was extremely destructive and disillusioning and damaging. And because it [00:13:00] negates all those days that you've accumulated, at least for me, that's what it felt like.

and people would make such a big deal out of a relapse. And I've talked to so many drug addicts that have relapsed and they're so discouraged. And I always say, "Hey, if you're sitting here talking to me now, and you're still alive. Don't worry about it. Just be happy you didn't die. It's behind you pick up exactly where you left off. Don't spend a single moment shaming yourself over that relapse."  And yes, maybe you can analyze it and figure out, okay, what was the trigger for it? Or like, where did I start to go off the path? And that can be useful. Sometimes it's even impossible to figure that out, you know? I think the most important thing is just it's in the past, you can't do anything about it.

Start from where you are and move forward from that place with, you know, with confidence and with self-love. [00:14:00] So, so for me, it kind of started from that place. And like I said, like setting the bar very, very low, like literally while I was dealing with deep depression after rehab, if I got out of bed and brushed my teeth, for me, that was literally a successful day and anything over and above, that was a bonus.

And then as I was able to achieve a little more, like maybe make it to a yoga class or maybe start teaching a yoga class or slowly these building blocks. You know, and with opening my businesses, it was the same thing. So I feel like a lot of people have this really big vision, but then they get like "deer in the headlights" because they can't figure out, well, how do I go from where I am now to, to that?

You know, and you've got to just break it down into these really small, manageable goals and ideally make those initial goals really, really fun. [00:15:00] Like, don't do the tedious stuff first, you know, unless maybe you work better by doing that and getting it out of the way. But for me it was like, okay, I'm going to pick a name for my studio.

So that's fun. Like, think about what my passions have been and what's, what's the feeling I want people to have when they hear the name of the studio, pick my colors, my branding, you know, get a logo designed for me. That was really, really fun. And then going to register a business name is a little more tedious or, only from like an admin perspective.

Cause even that's pretty exciting when you do that. But then going to look at commercial spaces or learning about like commercial leases and doing some research on like the, the competition or the demographic in your area. So you break it all down. And so in a week I might say, okay, I'm going to get three things done this week.

And if I did [00:16:00] those things, I felt a sense of accomplishment. I felt a sense of empowerment and that would fuel me and give me more energy to then get more done, you know, moving towards the completion of the project.

Brandon: [00:16:13] Totally. I love that. You know, Joel, coauthor of a book that we wrote together, Brainsprouting, Joel says all the time, "motivation follows action." Like when you do something you feel empowered to do more and which is why - and sometimes I talk about... One of the real secrets of magic for me is discipline. And that's not in a bad way. Discipline is about coming back, as you might say, in yoga, coming back to the mat and being able to, being able to forgive and it, and it doesn't have to be big things.

It has to be little things. In fact that when you do one, it carries over and suddenly. You know, like a cold, a cold rinse at the end of my shower every morning makes me feel like I've accomplished something [00:17:00] for the day. And then I want to do more. It's a little, one minute thing, you know?

Katie: [00:17:05] Yeah. Like with the cold shower, they recommend a 10 minute ice-cold shower.

Well, most of us can't commit to that right off the bat. Like, and they don't even recommend going from hot to cold, like in terms of your cellular health and the benefits for depression and this sort of thing. They say like, you know, from standing outside the shower, turn it to ice cold and get in. Well, most of us can't just do that.

So if you start by taking a hot, cozy shower, and then you just turn it cool at the end and you make it colder and you tolerate it, then you can start to add to that. I think that's a big thing for people. We have to do things in increments.

Brandon: [00:17:47] One of the challenges I see is like you say, people have a great big vision and they can't see how to get there from where they are.

And. And maybe get paralyzed by the [00:18:00] vast amount of things that might bring them towards that vision. Like you say, so to start a business, you have a, an maybe you have a vision of a community of yoga students and teachers, but how you, one of the things you can do is go and get the business name, and then you can get the logo in the colors and maybe look at spaces, but then what do you do?

And I think sometimes people like see all of it and get frozen. They get trapped. ?Can you, can you talk a little bit about that? Like how do you keep doing things, even if you're not certain that it's going to be, that's going to bring you where you want to go.

Katie: [00:18:38] Yeah, I think, for me, one thing that led to my addiction and kind of this constant "deer in the headlight" existence was that I could not figure out what my purpose was in life.

I didn't want to go to college, college or university because I didn't know what I wanted to study. I felt like for some reason, if I picked something, I [00:19:00] was somehow committing to it for life. I didn't really understand that life is this fluid thing and doors open and doors close, and you make choices along the way.

And I didn't want to even take a single course or take a step in any direction until I had a hundred percent clarity that that was going to be my path. And so in the meantime, I was doing drugs. I was partying. I was self-medicating depression and anxiety, and like a lack of direction, little did I know all these drugs were going to hook me and I was going to become an addict and then waste years of my life, you know, stuck in this cycle of addiction.

But when I turned 30 and I decided I needed to truly make a change for the next decade. That's when I decided to open my yoga studio. And I always joke that my story around opening the studio is one of the most uninspiring stories out there because I, I sat down with my [00:20:00] parents and I said to them, "Guys, I still have no clarity about my life and I have no idea what I want to do, but there's two things that I know for certain one is that I don't want to live in Southern Ontario because I don't like the climate. I don't like the winters, but I don't like the heat in the summer either. And I don't want to own a yoga studio." Because I was afraid of being chained down and just this responsibility of like a bricks and mortar business. And historically I had traveled a lot. I'd lived in Australia and India and the, you know, BC and I wanted the freedom to still move around.

Nevermind the fact that I had been miserable the whole time, but, you know, so they sat me down and they, cause they said, "Well, what are you going to do?" I said, "I'm going to move to San Diego." And they said, "Well, you've never been to San Diego." I said, "Well, I heard the climate is the best ever there." And they said, "Well, that's true. However, you've built a following of students here in [00:21:00] Ontario. You have the support, like emotionally, financially, whatever you need from your parents here, you built, rebuilt your health. You're off drugs. The logical thing to do is to open a studio. Why don't you just try it out for two years? And if you hate it, you'll find a way to get out of it.

"But we fear that if you go to the West coast, you're just going to slip back into this transient lifestyle. And everything that you've worked to build here is, you know, it will vanish."

So. I decided to do it because I like this idea of like all the building blocks are in place for me to do it. And you know what? I can switch gears if it's not fulfilling or if I hate it. It's my life. I can change it up if I want. And so that's what I did. And you know, of course I'm eternally grateful that I did because so much goodness has come from that decision and the [00:22:00] irony to it as well is that once I planted roots and I actually committed to something I've never felt more free.

So it was the traveling around and the, like the Buddhist say digging shallow wells. So, Oh, a scoop here, scoop there, but never actually going deep enough to hit water. I thought that was making me feel spontaneous and light and free, but actually picking a spot and digging, digging, digging, digging until I found, you know, some water and some, something that was alive and nourishing that is what's given me like a sense of being energized and freedom. And so that's been a very interesting life lesson for me.  A lot of people do things the opposite. They'll go, you know, they ignore their inner voice. They go to college or university. They do the things that they think they're supposed to do. Maybe they get [00:23:00] married at a young age, whatever it may be. And then later on they go, "Oh my God, I'm finally- I can't avoid the reality, the truth, that this is not what I want, nor did I ever want it. It's unfulfilling for me. And now I've got to face that fact and I've got to make some major changes," right? So some people it's sort of the reverse. Like if you have that inner voice, that whisper that becomes a shout that becomes, you know, you need to listen to that because it's not going to go away.

And sometimes it doesn't mean abandoning what it is you're doing, whether it's school or a long-term relationship or whatever it is, but maybe finding a way to fit, like, answer the call of that voice, whatever it's asking for. Maybe you can fit that into your current life. You know, it's not always about completely jumping ship and doing this like 180 degree turn.

[00:24:00] But for my path, I never chose the conventional path from the get-go. So coming back to something a little more like left brain, like logical, rational, strategic. That, that was the answer for me at that point in my life.

Brandon: [00:24:20] Yeah. Such powerful insights. I often think as a student, I was guilty of it too.

Somebody told me I should be a doctor because I was good at science and math. so I was like, Oh, sweet. Like that just figured out the rest of my life. Doctors make a lot of money, they get respect. My last name is Love. I thought it was fate, you know, , I loved high school science because it was about big ideas. And we were talking about like evolution and the theory of how people came to be.

I was really interesting to me, but then in university biology was the most drab, boring, not all of it, but [00:25:00] I had, I had one course on the cell membrane that like the whole course was on the cell membrane and what goes through it. And I remember thinking this is part of the. Like, this is part of what I want.

Is it, is this something I have to put up with? And I'm more and more everything just stacked against me. And I realized I was living what other people wanted me to live. I was trying to go after stuff because it seemed A. Easy, I didn't have to make the decisions and, B. Like it was going to lead me to whatever success was for other people. So, and I think we students have this misconception, like you say that once you pick something you're in it, you're in it forever. and more and more and more evidence mounts that says that's totally an untrue. Like maybe when our, maybe when our parents were like students nowadays, their grandparents were in the workforce, they picked a job they worked at until they retired. But even now people shift careers, full industries on a [00:26:00] regular basis. So, and having that, like you get, you have permission, right. Permission to do, to drop it, to permission, to go another direction.

Katie: [00:26:10] Which is, you know, we're so healthy now, too, right? We're living- people don't retire at 50 or 55 or 60 or 65, you know, working has shown to increase longevity if you're doing a job you enjoy it And so it's really common for people to switch careers in their fifties or sixties or beyond. And I don't think society even blinks an eye at that anymore.

Brandon: [00:26:34] Nope. Nope. It's we have this false pressure we put on ourselves, I think, to, to try and get things right. And so that's a great insight, as you say, like, even in the, if you're taking steps towards something by accepting that it doesn't have to be right first and it's, so it's intuitive. Everybody knows this to be true, but it's when you put it in action and you, you make mistakes about stuff, then you, you have a place to turn from.

And it's just like [00:27:00] taking that small thing knowing that it can change. Maybe that's what gives you the trust that you can take the step in the first place. I love your insight. I wanted to draw on this earlier. Like one of the first things, you know, maybe, maybe this is where we're going to, we're going to take this because I want to know what the real secret of success is for you.

Like you, thanks for sharing the story of, you know, some of your, your darker days and where those might've come from and how you've built yourself to this. You know, being a community builder now and a speaker and a, and an educator,

Katie: [00:27:31] So a couple pieces here. The number one always has to be your relationship with yourself. It has to be because-  I know people that are very successful at what they do, but they're filled with so much self-criticism or they're perfectionists, or they're always playing the comparison game and comparing themselves to other people.

And it's such a lose, losing battle, you know? And [00:28:00] so it's cliche to say that success. Has nothing to do with the external things, like the accolades, the money, whatever it may be. but it really is true. It has to come from -  like sometimes I'll try to make my world really small. So I'll think about, okay, what, what thoughts did I wake up with this morning?

And if they were kind of dreary and negative was I was able to reroute them quickly. To, to get to a place where I could be excited about my day. And then how did I show up in my day? So when people are in my presence, do they feel listened to, do they feel like I'm paying attention? Do I say things that uplift them?

Or how do I say things that tear them down a little bit or make them feel small? Like, how am I using my words in my relationships? You know, when I finished teaching a class, what are the words that I'm saying to myself? Am I being self-critical [00:29:00] it all comes down for me. It's it's about that. It's how am I treating myself?

And did I do my very best that day to positively impact the people who I cross paths with? Because at the end of our lives, that's really our legacy. I mean, some of us like Einstein and whoever else are meant to have these much bigger, iconic sort of globally recognized legacies for most of us, that's not going to be the the end for us, like, we'll be remembered by the people who knew us and who met us and how do we want to be described, you know? And at the end of your life, do you want to be laying in your bed? Like if you're lucky enough to make it to old age, if we're all lucky enough and realize that the true life hack was that you were meant to make friends with yourself, you know, and, and be your greatest supporter and greatest [00:30:00] companion throughout life and speak to yourself the way you would a dear friend or a lover or a child, you know, with encouragement and with patience and with humour and supporting them. And that to me is the definition of success because sometimes a lot of things in my life look really, really amazing, but I'm having a hard time with myself and I don't feel successful in those moments. And then other times  maybe things don't look so successful. Like right now during COVID the classes are small and revenue is down and studio morale is down because I can't employ any of my teachers, but how am I showing up for my family?

How am I showing up for myself and for my friends, that's where the initial work has to be done and where I can at the end of the day, I can judge, whether it's been a successful day or not. the other piece for me, Brandon, with success. [00:31:00] It is diligently practicing, reframing, and paradigm shifting. When I look at my life events, when I look at my so-called failures, you know, failure, failure is something that derails people from fulfilling their dreams.

Brandon: [00:31:19] Right.

Katie: [00:31:20] And we. We're so easily knocked down. I'm thinking of a situation I'm in right now. So I really want to get a book published of all of my writings. And I've got a really wonderful designer that I'm working with. But I even see myself like- the self-sabotage during this project. So the first thing I did was I put out a request on the Facebook Fempreneurs page, looking for someone to help me with this project.

I got so many responses and I'm such a people pleaser that I, I wanted, I wanted to hire all of them, you know? And so that derailed me for a couple of weeks because I couldn't make a decision. [00:32:00] Then when I made a decision, I kind of like hummed and hawed and delayed sending her some of my writings and some of my pictures.

And when I finally did it, she wrote back and said, "well can I get these photos in high-res?" Turns out I don't have any of the high-res copies and no one does. So what did I do? I shelved the project for two more months, you know, and I, so I see myself sabotage where any little obstacle along the way - that part of me that wants to hide from the world and stay small, like to avoid disappointment into avoid embarrassment, you know, the part of you that fears success, but also fears failure is willing to go, "Oh, you don't have any high-res photos. You know what, Katie? Let's just not even pursue this. Because it's too lofty of a goal. What if you only sell three copies of the book? What if you fail? Let's just not do this." And instead like read the [00:33:00] freaking news on COVID numbers for the 80th time of that day. Right? So, but at least I've developed the insight to catch myself doing that: self-sabotage and to recognize that these are little games that I'm playing.

And my job is to just go, you know what? I hear you. I know that you're trying to protect me from living large because it's riskier to live large, but I don't worry, we're going to be safe. We're going to be okay. I'm going to find a way around this high-res photo issue, and we're going to keep pursuing this project.

So reframing failure. All those years that I spent as an addict, I had to make meaning out of those years, otherwise they literally would be 10 wasted years of my life. So I had a choice. Do I want to see it as a waste or do I want to utilize those years to make the rest of my life more purposeful and impact people with the wisdom that [00:34:00] I gained during those 10 years and getting out of it?

If I can share one other, one other thing. The five years that I spent after rehab sleeping in my teenage bedroom, sleeping 14, 15, 16 hours a day only brushing my teeth only going to a meeting, you know, bear a very small life. And certainly I could have seen that as such a failure. Here I am, 26 years old living back at my parents' house.

I don't have a career. I don't have a relationship. I don't even have $5 to buy a Starbucks latte, let alone a house. But instead of seeing that as a failure, which would have just set me up for more shame and more self-loathing I had to see that as a gift, like, wow. I'm so lucky that I'm an addict that had this supportive family to come back to so I can rebuild myself and [00:35:00] set myself up for a successful life.

And so I chose to see those five years as a gift, rather than like a shameful chapter of my life.

Brandon: [00:35:11] What powerful stuff. That's that's so...useful, I think, for lack of a better word, like the ability to look at the things that go awry or not as expected, I'm not even gonna say the things you failed at because that's the reframe. It's, it's the things that didn't go as you expected. And knowing that  there's a part of you learning and gaining wisdom from these super- possibly negatively perceived things. Wow. Imagine, imagine what the world would look like if people were willing to take the step and know that even if they sucked, that would be meaningful for some next step down the road.

Katie: [00:35:56] Yeah. It's like life is a choose your own adventure and [00:36:00] you pick one way and it presents you with new gifts and new lessons. And if you pick a different way, you're, you're still gonna, there's going to be blessings. And there's also going to be hard lessons in that too. Every single path has those same two elements, lessons, and gifts.

So there's really no such thing as the wrong choice.

Brandon: [00:36:25] I think, you know, for me it provides a sense of relief, a sense of like, yeah, maybe it makes space for the forgiveness, you know, it makes, it makes space for the not having it all figured out. and as you know, I love, I love to remind people that we think we're right a lot and we're actually completely in the dark and that feeling can be so uncomfortable. But if you, if you develop a sense of self-forgiveness or sense of love, then the decisions you make, you [00:37:00] can recognize as being well, the best that you did here, the best that you could have done, or not.

And you made a mistake, but you're going to be better in the future for it.

Katie: [00:37:08] And, and what that does is it takes away and this sounds simplistic, but it takes away the possibility for regret. It takes away the possibility of the grass is greener over here. Or I wish I had done that, or I should have done that.

There's no room for any of that. When you approach life from this perspective, you know, I know a couple of my female friends that were in marriages that were, they knew 20 years prior to leaving that, that they were going to have to leave at some point, but they've done the work so that they don't regret those years that they stayed in it.

They recognize why they needed to stay there. For that time, whether it was raising children or they didn't have the self-confidence and self-love to break [00:38:00] out on their own yet or whatever it may be. And they have forgiven themselves, you know, for, for waiting so long, but it played out the way it played out based on choices they made and they are owning those choices but from a place of self-love.

Brandon: [00:38:19] Brilliant brilliant insights, Katie. I watched the David Chappelle interview with David Letterman. You know, he's doing this new, "My Next Guest Needs No Introduction" series and Chappelle talks about forgiveness. And he says in this world where there's no forgiveness, nobody wants to be honest.

And so we're just trying to avoid being caught. When you can create a space of forgiveness. You give people the opportunity to be honest. And some people will say, well, you should always be honest, but as anybody knows, even with yourself, if you don't forgive yourself, it's going to be hard to see how you are.

[00:39:00] And in order to make some changes. And this is really, I think, a big challenge for a lot of people. So thanks for sharing your story and your brilliance on this topic.

Katie: [00:39:13] I love what you just said that Dave Chappelle.  I heard a podcast with Alanis Morissette and she said, "I like to peel away the layers until there's no lie left."

Brandon: [00:39:25] Whew.

Katie: [00:39:26] I know chills.

Brandon: [00:39:29] Alanis always bringing the fire. My goodness.

Katie: [00:39:31] Yeah. And I thought isn't that a fascinating thing to reflect upon for yourself and the lies we tell ourselves the lies we tell others. Yeah, it's a lifelong journey to get to that place of honesty I guess.

Brandon: [00:39:44] Totally. A practice of self-compassion, self-love, self-forgiveness in order to move on from our mistakes, make meaning from them, and, and give value to those experiences so that we can lift ourselves up and make magic [00:40:00] in the world.

Gosh, Katie, thanks so much. I would like to keep this thing short, although I could- probably we could talk about this stuff for hours and we will again, but for now I want to say thanks for being on the show and, I wish you all the best as you continue to navigate the journey, whatever that looks like for you.

Katie: [00:40:20] Thank you so much, Brandon. Yes. Such a pleasure. I feel so energized after chatting with you for the last hour. So thank you.

Brandon: [00:40:27] Always, always. Thanks Katie. Take care.


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