Opening The Gate - Hosted by Felicia BrownFeb 14, 2022
Let Go of Expectations
Everything All At Once
Recently I wrote about Toxic Positivity on Facebook. It generated A TON of comments and so I decided to share it here.
This week two friends who have a podcast used that post (and this episode) as inspiration for their own podcast. Hope you will check it out too!
Link to my original post:
Link to Moore Shenanigans "Feelings Are OK"
Why I Celebrate the Day After Mother's Day
Running for thr Win and Loss
Pausing In Love
Finding the Sparkle
A Pocket Full of Kindness
Sharing Joy and Gratitude Along the Way
A Year to Happen, Laugh and Love
I love Facebook memories because they are like a journal of sorts that pops up for me to inspect every day and see who and where I was on this day a year– or maybe ten years ago. Sometimes it helps remember fun moments and at others it lets me see how I was growing or inspired. This week I’ve been reminded of some important life lessons I feel are important to share. Here’s one…
Filling Up the Bucket
I often get inspiration during my morning runs. "By running up the hill that makes me cry, by pushing myself to keep going, by making time to write and share this experience, I am filling up my bucket and strengthening it to told more. By doing things I love TODAY I am emptying my mind of potential regrets, and making space for the energy and care of my mind, body and spirit."
Listen for more.
The March of Hope
Today's podcast came from something I originally wrote in March of 2020. Though I made a few tiny adjustments to make it current, it still rings true. I hope it gives you hope for the rest of March and onward.
Gratitude is something I speak and write about a lot. Saying thank you in and of itself can be a simple and ongoing prayer - and one that is transformative. A quick idea on how to turn gratitude into something deeper.
Seeing "Friends" Through the Lens of Love
Why are we "friends" with people on social media with those who we are not really actual friends with? Some random thoughts I had as I recovered from a routine medical procedure.
"Have to" vs. "Get To"
Apologies for being absent for a couple weeks. I've gotten to do a lot of other things lately - just a few too many - but something had to give. I really love doing podcasts though and am excited to be back.
Doing What is Right Vs. Doing What is Right for You
Life is a little busy at the moment. That is what makes this episode SO perfect, because it is a living example of me listening to my own advice instead of someone else's. Perhaps this episode will encourage you to do the same in your life.
Finishing Unfinished Business with Forgiveness
Today's episode includes a chapter from my book Sunflower Wisdom. I was prompted to share this after I received an unexpected apology from someone who hurt me deeply a year or two ago. As someone who constantly encourages people to live from a place of love; to accept and forgive others; and to walk their talk, I've recently been faced with the tasks of forgiving some folks who have hurt me deeply. Sharing some of my steps for letting go.
The other book I mentioned, Unfinished Business by James van Praagh.
Seeds of Hope
Sunflowers brighten my mood and remind me to stay focused on the warmth and goodness in the world. Ukrainians believe that these flowers look towards the sky looking for hope and well-being, while at night they lower their heads to reflect on their lives. For me, sunflowers will always signify the strength and bravery of one woman, of the Ukrainian people, and of others who have spoken out against the conflict, even when doing so may threaten their existence. To me, sunflowers will always be about standing up and sharing warmth and goodness in spite of the darkness.
Video link (don't watch if triggered by profanity, guns, camo or the conflict in general)
In an effort to share my own seeds of hope and help others find light in the darkness, I have partnered with Amazon to give away the ebook/Kindle versions of The Sunflower Princess and Sunflower Wisdom FOR FREE from Monday February 28th through Friday March 4th. This offer is available through Amazon only and the direct links are available in the show notes. You can also do a search on Amazon with my name, Felicia Brown, and the titles The Sunflower Princess or Sunflower Wisdom.
While you’re there please remember to check out my newest book, SCARS to SCARS Stories of Vulnerability, Resilience, and Overcoming Adversity, – a collaborative anthology with 19 other authors. We each share our stories of overcoming adversity with the intent to give hope to anyone struggling while increasing awareness of mental health issues and helping prevent suicide. Proceeds benefit The Realize Foundation. Learn more at Realize foundation dot org. Thank you for sharing your light, hope and support.
Breaking Through the Window of All or Nothing Thinking
How many times have I thought the window of opportunity in front of me is the only one - and because it had closed, the chance was gone? How many times have I passed up trying something because I felt like I was too late, or too old to do it? Time to let go of my all or nothing thinking.
Opening the Gate podcast was written and produced yours truly, Felicia Brown. To learn more about me and how I try to share good in the world, please visit www.FeliciaBrown.com, www.Spalutions.com or www.TheDreamTeamDucks.com. If you want to connect with me through social media or are interested in having me speak at your conference, event or summit, go to www.linktr.ee/ FeliciaBrown.com.
Out of Crisis, Chaos and Scars, Stars are Born
Though I probably wouldn’t choose to re-experience any of my darkest days, I am a believer that every challenge or problem we encounter may be used to spark or inspire a “great endeavor.”
Learning to see crisis and chaos as creative and benevolent forces is not always easy. In fact, when the world feels like it’s spinning out of control, this perspective may seem completely out of reach. If you’d asked me in the heart of the pandemic or other difficult times, I might not have been able to grasp onto it either. However, over time I’ve learned again and again, dark moments will eventually pass, cuts and bruises will heal, and the sun will once again shine through.
The collaborative anthology, "SCARS to STARS: Stories of Vulnerability, Resilience, and Overcoming Adversity" is available today on Amazon.com. The organization benefitting from the book - The Realize Foundation - is focused on creating community and conversations about mental health awareness and suicide prevention. The book’s authors – including yours truly - are sharing our stories to support the foundation and bring hope to those dealing with personal challenges and adversity of all kinds.
The Dream Team Ducks and I are very proud to be a part of this book. To learn more about my story and the other authors, visit www.realizefoundation.org for our FREE online book launch today, 2-22-22 at 8 AM PST/11 AM EST and to get the replay after the launch. You can also visit the link in the show notes to buy the book or at access an interview with me discussing my chapter. Thank you so much for sharing this information with anyone who has experienced mental health challenges or been affected by suicide. If that person is you, know you are not alone and there is hope just a few pages away.
Sometimes Just Showing Up Equals Success
Being willing to show up and do your best, regardless of the outcome or "place" you achieve - or the possible failure you might experience - makes you achieve success more often than you might know.
Build Bridges Instead of Burning Them
In a former life, I used to be someone who burned bridges. However, this practice rarely brought me the results I wanted in the short-term and made for some difficult navigation in the future. A few thoughts on how to build bridges instead of burning them.
Posing, Exposing, and Composing My Way to Joy
One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned over the last few years is that it’s OK to look silly to find your joy. And evidently it is something I’m here to learn really well, at least as evidenced by the last few days, three stories of fun and a song. It's entirely possible they all have something to do with rubber ducks.
The "official" video with The Captain and Tennille
From Stepping Off the World to Staying In It
While taking in the news that the former Miss USA, Cheslie Kryst, had taken her own life, II came across some other comments and remarks of disbelief which left me speechless. Treating someone with kindness and reaching out with support is more important than ever before. (Note: The episode mistakenly refers to Cheslie as Miss Universe. She was a competitor but did not win the title of Miss Universe.)
We can all help prevent suicide. The Lifeline provides 24/7, free and confidential support for people in distress, prevention and crisis resources for you or your loved ones, and best practices for professionals in the United States. Visit https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/ or call 800-273-8255 for more information.
OTHER ARTICLES & RESOURCES
Kate Spade - designer
SCARS TO STARS - focused on mental health awareness and suicide prevention
I'm really honored to be part of a new book - SCARS to Stars - which is being released February 22nd. Though The Dream Team Ducks and I provide a bit of comic relief, our journey together began at a very difficult time.
Scars to Stars is a collection of 20 very personal stories of overcoming situations in life that touch all of us in different ways. The purpose of our vulnerability and authenticity is to meet you in your lowest of lows so you know you are not alone.
Proceeds from the book will benefit The Realize Foundation. We believe that conversation and community can reduce the suicide statistics and help people live healthy productive lives!
Join us for the official book launch on Feb 22 - online and FREE - and stay tuned for details about how to get your copy.
From Wall Flower to Will Flower
As a natural performer, I’m good at the role of confident entrepreneur and entertaining speaker. Yet, I can still easily become a wall-flower, feeling like an outsider SO many times – and wondered what I was doing wrong. Recently I had some insights about how to make things better.
The article which made me start thinking about this issue.
Am I Invisible
Ask the Right Question & the Answer Will Come
I really believe in the idea that when you are looking for an answer to a question – and put it out to God, the Universe or the bathroom walls, the answer you need will come. What is most important is asking the right question and then listening.
I got the answer I was seeking through the links below.
The Tim Ferriss Show
If Not Now, When?
Several years ago, I had a uncomfortably close brush with death which pushed me from having an “I’ll do it someday” mindset to one of “If not now, when?” Since that dark and dangerous night, the phrase “if not now, when?” has pushed me through some tough moments in training, business and life. We all have them – the days when we don’t want to keep going – or even start and I've learned to follow through on the opportunities which won’t be there later whenever possible.
Stepping Back to Leap Ahead
Since the start of the pandemic, I‘ve gone through some major life changes which gave me room to jump into some new adventures. But as in much of life, things don't always go the way you think they will. But it's ok to step back before you leap ahead!
You can read the transcript for this podcast on my blog at https://www.feliciabrown.com/blog/stepping-back-to-leap-forward
When you live in the country and have a well, no power can equal no shower. When faced with the possibility of losing both during a winter storm, I decided to take quick action so I'd have no regrets.
Finding My Light by Fixing the Switch
One thing Sarah Silverman and I have in common is at least one way we try to overcome anxiety and depression is by finding ways to laugh with ourselves. Yesterday I did surprised myself with an impromptu home repair which unexpectedly brought out the laughter and light in me.
Fair warning...you may hear me sing briefly in this episode. Evidently I have overcome my fear of karaoke - at least when you can't see me!
Listen to the original version and watch the video for the song "I Kissed a Girl" by Katie Perry here
Get Busy to Get Better
A few weeks ago, I saw a book titled “When I Got Busy, I got Better.” I laughed at the title for a moment, because I've been good at being busy for a long time. Or was. But of late I've learned too much downtime can lead to me feeling down - and I decided it was time to make a change.
Getting The Lift I Need
Many years ago, I was in a yearlong leadership development program for executives and business owners which introduced us to new areas, cultures and programs in our city. One spring day we were given the assignment to spend the day role playing - mine was being someone who was wheelchair bound. The experience I had was eye-opening and "uplifting: in ways I did not expect.
By the way, this episode was inspired by a recent story shared on Facebook by my colleague, Irene Diamond. Her experience is her own to tell, but if you want to learn more about Irene, you can visit https://www.thediamondmethod.com/ and https://www.irenediamond.com/programs/.
Stumbling is the Point
Being perfect - or trying to be - is a problem because it's just not possible. Sharing one of my many opportunities for letting go of the need to pretend I'm perfect by making mistakes and telling others about them.
Giving Back and Letting Love Flow
This podcast was brought into existence, finally, because of my desire to break through the isolation, anxiety and depression I’ve been feeling - and to reconnect with life. I know it’s time to get back into the flow of positive energy, inspiration, creativity and love. That’s where I know I belong but it has felt just slightly out of reach for too long. I know I’m not the only one feeling this way and I am feeling a pull to make changes that will help me get back to helping others.
I Want My Two Dollars
It’s the time of year, when folks are setting goals, making resolutions, and taking steps to change or improve their lives. After seeing a simple challenge on Facebook encouraging folks to start building a nest egg, my husband and I talked about doing the challenge together. How the idea of making a new $2 investment affected me was surprising.
The quote I reference in this episode was from Jim Rohn, who authored countless books and audio and video programs, and influenced a generation of personal-development trainers and executives from America’s top corporations. Learn more about him and his work here: https://www.jimrohn.com/
Racing Rubber Ducks and Getting Back to Ready, Fire Aim
If you've been paying attend to my classes, articles, websites or social media posts over the last couple years, you know that rubber ducks are "a thing" in my life. Besides being cute and fun, they have been some good helpers in keeping me smiling, staying present and taking action NOW. They are also a key to helping me revive a business philosophy I followed for years of "Ready, Fire, Aim."
There's a great reminder of this idea in the book, "The Slight Edge" by Jeff Olson which I briefly talk about. The book is available on Amazon (of course) and other places. Check it out here: https://www.amazon.com/Slight-Edge-Turning-Disciplines-Happiness/dp/1626340463
Opening the Gate - An Invitation to Grow with the Flow
As someone who always used to be the person with something to say, an insight, story or helpful piece of advice, I’ve found of late that I’ve lost some of my voice. Well maybe not lost it but put it away for a bit to be still, quite and to listen. While being still and silent is often a restorative measure for me, too much of a good thing is the opposite.
Today I'm taking a step to nourish myself in another way - by reaching out, giving back and testing my first podcast. Join me for Opening the Gate, a new and evolving podcast, to explore ideas and stories for opening your mind, heart and spirit. Let’s grow the flow of good things into our lives – and from us back into the world, together.
It seems like the perfect way to wrap up one year and get ready for the new one. I hope you agree and enjoy this tiny preview of Opening the Gate.
Check out the podcast that inspired me to get started: Optimal Daily Living with Justin Malik at https://oldpodcast.com/