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115 – Arts are “The Way” to Healing and Passion with Rae Luskin
Episode 11519th June 2017 • Gift Biz Unwrapped • Sue Monhait
00:00:00 00:40:42

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Rae uses creative expression to nurture self-worth, resilience, healing and social change. She found her passion after overcoming some serious life events and now makes it her mission to assist others. She helps both individuals and organizations create powerful visions that transform their lives. This is achieved by building a problem solving culture and fostering growth and change through her Creative Visioning Training. Rae is the author of Art from My Heart and the award winning book Creative Activist: Make the World Better, One Person, One Action at a Time.

Rae’s Story

How the idea of art for healing all began [5:20] Trouble with grandfather [5:49] Feedback from a college professor reinforced Rae’s negative beliefs [6:24] Trying different options and learning about somatic response [7:41] Art and service saved her life [8:44] The Winning Adventure [16:12]

Rae’s Life Insights

Facts of sexual abuse in our society [8:59] Finding the courage to tell her story [12:04] Focus on others – the superhero dance [12:25] Helping people discover their passion [16:39] The science behind good motives [21:08] Looking at problems from a difference perspective [25:53] Steps to start finding your true passion [28:10]

Success Trait

Gratitude – Vision – Ritual [29:58]

Productivity/Lifestyle Tool

Basecamp – Project management and team communication software

Recommended Reading and Listening

Free-Audiobook-Button The Artist’s Way by Jeremy P. Tarcher The Art of Possibility by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander The Creative Activist by Rae Luskin

Contact Links

Website Facebook Twitter Pinterest LinkedIn YouTube
If you found value in this podcast, make sure to subscribe and leave a review in Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts. That helps us spread the word to more makers just like you. Thanks! Sue

Transcripts

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Hi there.

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This is gift biz,

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unwrapped episode 115.

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Whatever brings you joy will make a difference.

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So just do it.

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Hi, this is John Lee,

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Dumas of entrepreneur on fire,

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and you're listening to give to biz unwrapped,

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and now it's time to light it up.

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Welcome Nick gift biz,

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unwrapped your source for industry specific insights and advice to develop

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and grow your business.

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And now here's your host,

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Sue Mona height.

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Hi there.

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It's Sue and welcome to the gift biz unwrapped podcast.

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Whether you own a brick and mortar shop sell online or

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are just getting started,

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you'll discover new insights to gain traction and to grow your

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business. And today I am thrilled to have joining us Ray

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Luskin of the winning adventure.

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Ray uses creative expression to nurture self-worth resilience,

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healing, and social change.

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She helps both individuals and organizations create powerful vision.

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Then transform their lives.

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This is achieved by building a problem,

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solving culture and fostering growth and change through her creative visioning

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training. Ray is the author of art from my heart and

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the award winning book,

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creative accidents.

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Make the world better.

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One person,

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one action at a time.

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I don't know.

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I have this kind of vibe that we're going to learn

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a whole lot today,

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so I can not wait to get to this Ray,

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welcome to the show.

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Thanks Sue.

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I'm so happy to be here.

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This is very exciting for me.

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I a new friend,

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so thank you.

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Yay Chatted a little bit beforehand.

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And I know that this is the start of something great

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in terms of our relationship.

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I know it's like,

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okay, I can't wait to get know when you get back

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from your trip,

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we're going to spend time together.

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Absolutely. We are networking everybody.

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This is what it's all about.

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So as creatives,

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I have a little bit of a tradition here.

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Not a little bit,

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a lot,

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a bit,

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I guess I would say.

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And that is by having our guests describe themselves through a

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motivational candle.

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So if you were to create an ideal candle for yourself,

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what color would it be and what would be the quote

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on the candle?

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Well, my candle would be purple and it would also have

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glitter around it.

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So it shines a little bit extra.

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And my favorite quote is how wonderful it is.

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Nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the

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world. And that's by Anne Frank.

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Oh my gosh.

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Well, first of all,

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it's super powerful just because it's from her.

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Right, right.

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But isn't that what you and I,

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I guess,

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are striving to make sure everybody understands exactly they can get

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going. They can do what they want to do.

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Right. And if you have a creative idea bubbling up,

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don't tamp it down anymore.

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You need to take it and embrace it and enjoy it

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and let it bubble up to the surface because you bring

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gifts to the world.

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You're talking about gifts on wrapped and that's what it is.

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We all have these gifts and the world is waiting for

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each and every one of us to unwrap them and share

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them. Absolutely agree with you.

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And I think a of us diminish the value because it's

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ours. You're like,

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how could that be important?

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Or how could that be worthwhile to anybody else?

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Cause it's just,

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you know,

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I just thought of it.

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It's just my,

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you know,

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I just created it,

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right? That kind of a mentality.

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They also say,

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well, there's nothing original,

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but that's not the case because each one of us has

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a backstory.

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And what brings us to that point in our lives.

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And it's special to us,

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spent a lot of time working with different clients.

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And there's a young woman.

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Who's just delightful.

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She's an aspiring musician.

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And she's working towards that now writing songs and going back

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to school and learning how to play more instruments.

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And her story is so compelling because she lost a child.

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She realizes I need to share my story with other people

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and it's through her music so it can be through anything.

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And it doesn't have to be tragic that came to mind

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when we were chatting,

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but it can be just the joy of living.

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You know,

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what you have that you've created somebody else I've been working

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with, you know,

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she just retired and what are her gifts?

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What is it that is special about her that can change

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the world.

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And I'm always looking at,

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you can make a difference.

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We figured out what retirement would look like.

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And that was really challenging because she had this image that

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she had to wait until she was 65.

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And she had a lot of health challenges.

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And you know,

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I kept saying,

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what are you waiting for?

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What's the life that you would like?

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And so we plan that out.

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And then the piece that came together for her,

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she loves animals.

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She has three dogs,

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two cats.

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So we talked about it and I suggested,

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what about taking one of your dogs and making it a

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therapy dog?

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And she did it.

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And it has changed her world every day.

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She can go visit somebody,

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whether it's in the hospital hospice.

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And I didn't even know this program is Vistage kids in

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libraries free to the dog because they're afraid to read out

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loud to anybody else,

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but they'll sit and read to the dog.

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And when I heard that,

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it was like,

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Oh my God.

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So empowering.

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So everybody's got a gift and it can be just whatever.

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And that's a creative expression.

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How do you use your gifts?

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And it separates you from everybody else.

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I mean,

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that is what our personal value brings because nobody else could

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be that woman who had the path,

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either of the two examples that you've just had.

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Everyone has a unique story to tell,

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to attach with possibly a product or something else that you

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might say isn't brand new,

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like candles,

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aren't brand new,

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but a backstory of candles would be brand new,

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right? Something like that.

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You've led this way perfectly.

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Let's talk about your backstory,

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bring us back a little bit and bring us then up

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to where you are today.

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What's your journey?

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What's my journey.

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Well, my journey is using art for healing.

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That's where it all began.

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I was an artist from the time I was a little

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girl. I'd miss Ray's art school.

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My sister she's younger and all her girlfriends.

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And I took them down and we'd draw and all that

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kind of stuff.

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I've always been an artist and I've enjoyed creating.

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And I won an award.

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If you're not from Chicago,

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there used to be a famous department store called Marshall fields.

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And when I was in first grade,

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I won an award and I got to have my picture

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hung in Marshall fields and my picture in the newspaper and

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all that kind of stuff.

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And it was so cool.

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And my grandfather was an artist and a painter.

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And so he said,

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you know what?

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I'm going to teach you to paint.

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Now I was into drawing.

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I'd never painted before.

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And so took me to his art studio and that was

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fabulous. But I found out that he was a pedophile.

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He was sexually abusive.

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And I live with that for many,

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many years.

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And it became the healing journey.

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I went through talk therapy,

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I survived,

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but I was never thriving until I actually started using my

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art. Now I have to tell you a little bit of

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my story in the sense that when I had gone to

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college, I wanted Ray Rembrandt and Rubin's,

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that's how I envisioned my life.

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And I was going to be this famous painter and I'm

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taking oil painting class.

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And the professor says you're a terrible painter.

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And I didn't have the confidence,

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the wherewithal to,

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you know,

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and he said,

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get out of my class.

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And I did.

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And so I didn't paint for 12 years.

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And at that point I didn't realize that I was having

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flashbacks. My abuse happened in an art studio.

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I didn't know that this was going to be a trigger.

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And so I stopped painting.

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I stopped giving my best to life and my joy was

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just diminished because I wasn't expressing myself.

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And so I made a decision at some point because I

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got into this place,

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I'm surviving,

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but it was miserable.

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And I wanted to literally curl up and die.

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I mean,

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I'd get my kids off to school.

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I was blessed.

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I had a wonderful husband and two great kids,

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but every day I get them off to school and I

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crawl back into bed and fetal position.

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You know,

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it's funny.

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I was just mentioning to you,

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I live on the train tracks.

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I lived on the train tracks with them and I kept

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hearing the train go by.

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And all I could think about is walking in front of

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the train.

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I wanted to end it.

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The pain was so severe.

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And I said,

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I have a choice.

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And I made a choice.

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I said,

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I'm going to die.

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I'm going to live.

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And I made the choice to live.

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Obviously I'm still here.

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I wanted to be there for my kids.

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And I went on a healing journey and I think one

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of my gifts and one of my strengths is my curiosity

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and my sense of adventure.

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I'm willing to try almost anything.

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As far as,

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at least in the healing modality.

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I did anger work.

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I went in deprivation tanks.

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I did energy work,

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which nobody was doing in the early eighties.

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At least not in the Chicago area.

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It was not known.

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And so I was really,

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you know,

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a pioneer and everybody who knew like,

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Oh, what'd you try?

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Oh, what would you suggest?

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TRIBE occupant and all the things that most people at that

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point weren't into and all the alternative stuff.

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But the thing that really propelled me was my starting to

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scribble and doodle my pain.

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At that point,

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I wasn't familiar with the term somatic response and our body

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hangs on to the traumas in ourselves.

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And there's gotta be a way to release it.

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And it needs whole brain not just talking.

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So I would start with scribbles and doodles and I get

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that anger out.

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Then I'd stamp my feet and have tantrums.

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And I hung up a punching bag in my basement and

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I took a bat and I'd swing at it and I'd

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scream. I'd wait for the train to go by.

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I didn't think I was killing my kids or something.

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So, you know,

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I did a lot of work and my life changed.

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I could not believe the difference in who I became in

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that process.

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And it took a while,

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you know,

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obviously to get there,

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but over the years,

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I then started sharing my story and that was such a

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healing tool.

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So I say art and service saved my life.

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There were moments about having to go out in the first

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time I told my story in a public setting.

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One young woman came up to me and she said,

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you saved my life.

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And that's very powerful.

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The numbers are staggering.

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One in four young girls are by the time they're 18

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or sexually abuse.

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One is six boys.

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You know,

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we've got a wounded society here and we need to address

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that. Think about it.

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Cancer's getting lots of money,

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lots of research,

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lots of attention.

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Cancer was a secret.

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Well, this is still considered a secret in our society.

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So I feel it's my duty to go out and talk

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about it.

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I truly do believe art and service saved my life.

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Wow. Okay.

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So I am sitting here jaw to the floor,

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honored that you would share this whole story with us.

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And I know you're sharing it publicly,

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but what a potent story to tell us.

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And I'm sure some of our listeners can totally relate to

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that. So that's number one.

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Thank you.

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I just want to honor the other people who are listening

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and it can be any trauma that you've experienced.

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It doesn't have to be sexual abuse can be physical abuse,

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somebody emotionally abusing you,

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those kinds of things.

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So I just wanna honor that.

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Right. Perfect.

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And we're going to get into more of that,

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but I have a couple of things that I want to

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bring up that have come to mind while you're telling the

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story. When you were at that point where you were saying

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you were going to decide whether you were going to choose

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life or not.

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Was it just a moment in time?

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I made a list,

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the pros and cons list or something?

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Yeah. I mean,

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at first I started with the list of all the horrible

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things that happened to me.

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And I said,

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well, that is certainly not productive in this lifetime.

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So then it was the list.

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I really started with a list of what am I grateful

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for that outweighed?

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The other that became a practice of mine is gratitude.

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This was just when Oprah was starting to talk about gratitude

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too. So is synchronicity at its best because I started making

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a gratitude list every day.

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And then I did something called a win list.

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I did well list.

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And some days they were the same thing I got out

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of bed and I brushed my teeth and I took a

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shower. And if that's all I could do that day,

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that was great.

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And then it was,

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you know,

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I was thankful for the electricity in my house.

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I was thankful the sun Rose.

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I was thankful my kids are healthy.

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I'm thankful that I had a beautiful space to live in.

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I had to work it.

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I was the person who was,

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the glass was half empty.

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I listened to every positive tape.

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You Louise hay was very popular at that time.

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Joan Poroshenko.

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It was where some of the leaders and Larry Dossey who

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talked about prayer.

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I know everybody uses Pandora and iTunes now,

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but I still have some of those tapes.

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There's nothing wrong with that.

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Then when you get to the point where you have been

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grateful, you're recognizing it,

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you made the choice.

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Then you take another step and say,

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now I want to share what I've learned because so many

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people in the world are affected.

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I get that.

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I know that.

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And so you're going to take the stage and you're going

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to tell your story for the first time.

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So a lot of our listeners we'll talk about the fact

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that things are uncomfortable,

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that they're nervous,

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that they're anxious just to present themselves much less,

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such a personal life,

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affecting story like yours.

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Talk through how that happened.

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You were the going to go stage and talk about it.

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Walk through a little bit of how you physically got yourself

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to do that because it had to be super scary.

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It was Very scary.

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I mean,

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my knees were knocking,

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but it was funny.

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I belong to a health club at the time and I

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kept saying health is more than just exercise.

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So I said,

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can I organize a day of health with all these other

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components? So I sort of set that the stage I invited

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my sister and my mother.

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Now, my mother had never heard my story.

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So that was even worse.

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Oh boy.

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It was like,

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okay, I have to do this.

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But to prepare,

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I actually created a little,

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what I call my superhero dance.

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So I put my hands on my hips.

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I get across my arms,

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like wonder woman.

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And then I spin around with my arms in the air,

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like Rocky.

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I truly physically have to prepare myself.

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I envision,

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what did I want to say?

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First? I wrote the speech.

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I brought some of my artwork with me that I had

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done my healing artwork,

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but I spent a lot of time visioning.

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What is the outcome?

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I want it.

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Wasn't just about me.

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How am I going to impact somebody else?

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What can I do to help others?

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And I had to focus on them,

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not on myself.

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And I think it's the same thing with anybody.

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Who's starting a business who has a new product.

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It's not about us.

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It's about your clients.

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It's the investment that you're making in the world.

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And if we can start looking at we're a being of

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service and our gifts are serviced and we then also can

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get paid for that.

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That's another element that you can consider.

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But I think it's when we change it from an I

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perspective to an us perspective,

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it's all of us and all of us need to hear

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this message.

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It's not just you and me anymore.

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It's an us,

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Right? Absolutely.

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Okay. We're moving on.

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I'm scribbling notes here.

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Cause I'm like have so many things I want to say

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to you,

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but before we go on,

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I want to just make one comment about another part of

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your story,

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which is when your college professor told you that you could

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not paint and you took that to heart and it virtually

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destroyed temporarily your vision and probably crushed you as a person.

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And I want all of us give biz listeners to hear

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what Ray did.

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I mean,

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she took that initially.

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She found out the source of why she was producing what

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she was,

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which is a deeper layer of her story.

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But I want all you guys to think back in your

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life, is there something that you really loved and some words

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that just broke you and you lived with those words and

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the truth that someone was telling you when it really means

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to be healing for a lot of people,

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just because one person says something doesn't mean it's necessarily true.

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And we've heard these stories over and over again.

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Multi-facets like,

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you know,

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Michael Jordan couldn't play basketball.

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He didn't make his junior high team,

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things like that all over.

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Right? So just,

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if there's been something that you've been living with your whole

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life that someone has said,

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I would suggest you go back and revisit that and possibly

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readjust your thinking.

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Don't necessarily think it's true.

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I mean,

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teachers sometimes are mean well and other,

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they think they're get real.

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But as artists and creatives,

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we live beyond get real.

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We think in terms of possibilities,

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I tell the story.

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Sometimes this is the sad by triple whammy.

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So not only do I have that in art,

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but I had her teacher who said,

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you can't write,

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you're a terrible writer.

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And I was in chorus and they asked me to Mount

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the words now Mt.

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The words was really,

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I love to sing.

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I can't sing in the sense of,

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you know,

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that kind of thing.

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But again,

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whatever brings you joy.

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And that's what I'm talking about.

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If your joy was writing and if you just write for

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yourself, do it,

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don't worry about when your husband's going to say,

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or if it's ever going to get printed.

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If it brings you joy,

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do it.

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If you want to sing,

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sing. Now it was part of,

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one of my programs that I do when I talk about

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self care and using the arts for healing.

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And I actually get people,

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both help singing and dancing.

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And I tell people this story and sometimes I'll sing the

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youth to bitsy spider,

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you know,

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and I'll play it up.

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And other times they get people up and we're singing and

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doing the hokey pokey together,

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whatever brings you,

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joy will make a difference.

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So just do it just like the Nike commercial.

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Because even if it's not going to add to your financial

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success, but if it brings you joy in your personal life,

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it will add to every other aspect of your life.

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Absolutely it'll rub over because attitude is everything,

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right? So it'll move over defined for us so that we

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all understand what is the winning adventure,

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your business,

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The winning adventure is several aspects.

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It is about being creative.

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And I always talk about life is a winning adventure.

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We are on a path and it's a process.

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So that's what makes it an adventure.

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And we are all on that path.

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And when I talk about art,

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I talk about it as process,

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all the work I've done with people over the years in

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my book,

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art for my heart and I had an art school for

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10 years called art and soul connections.

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I always talk process.

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Let's figure out what makes it a winning process.

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And the adventure is just like we were talking about exploring,

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playing experimenting with different modalities,

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techniques, ideas.

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So when you're talking about creating a new business,

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ideas are currency.

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So let's give ourselves permission to wander along that path and

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just keep exploring and playing without judgment.

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That was really the inspiration.

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The other piece of this is I love to travel.

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I think travel has given me new outlooks on life.

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I can observe cultures.

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I can see what's going on in the rest of the

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world. I can spend time with people who may not look,

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act, or be like me,

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but still find that commonality and just the natural beauty of

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travel and seeing art all over the world and architecture that

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again is a way of adding to your creative toolkit and

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giving you inspiration and ideas.

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So that was the other part of the winning adventure.

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And one of the things that you really have brought to

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heart is helping other people discover what their passion or their

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purpose is.

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How does that happen?

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I take people through a process,

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a series of questions and little art activities.

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You know,

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it's not just straight talk again.

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When you are using a whole brain modality,

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which is what I call it.

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You're combining left and right brain.

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When you're writing versus even writing on your computer,

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you're creating more neural pathways in your head.

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There's something called neuroplasticity.

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So I take you through a series of little exercises and

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some of them are really fun.

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And we go through a list of what's your passion.

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Think about it.

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What makes you smile from being a superhero?

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If you were a superhero,

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who would you be?

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I talked about wonder woman and Superman.

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This is so delightful.

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There's a young girl and she is a superhero.

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She created this whole identity around it.

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She fights the ills of the world based on the shoes

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she's wearing that day.

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So some days she's wearing rainbow shoes,

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some days she's wearing boots,

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it's all about creativity and finding that for yourself.

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I'll take you through different processes like that.

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So you imagine you're a superhero or when you're watching a

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movie or the commercials,

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what touches your heart?

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What makes you want to cry?

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Or just say,

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Oh, you know,

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maybe when you're seeing the stories of the dogs,

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when the pens or the children who are starving in Africa

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or whatever,

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it gets,

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her research,

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whatever it is,

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I take you through that.

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And there's a whole series of questions that we go through.

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And one of the fun activities is,

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and you can do this as home.

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Imagine you're on the cover of time magazine,

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top a hundred people for what is it that you want

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to be up there for?

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This is way we do it.

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I think you have to make it fun.

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I think one of the problems that many of us has

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faced, and I know I faced it many times.

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We don't feel we have influence and impact on anybody.

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So think about in your own life,

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go through a moment in your day who influences you.

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Now, it may be starting up in the morning,

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your husband or your child says to you,

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mom, I love you or this or that.

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Or maybe it's like,

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they're encouraging you or applauding you for something you did.

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And then you go out in the real world and it's

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the cashier.

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And you can't find your credit card.

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Who's influencing you,

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maybe somebody at work,

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your boss.

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So start with the positive influences in your day.

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You're sitting there on the bus and somebody got up and

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gave a seat to an elderly person.

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You're like,

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wow, I love that.

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And so the next thing you know,

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you're opening the door for an elderly person that day.

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So you're influenced every day.

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So you start with,

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what is the influence.

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The next piece of it is look at the day and

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see the toxic influences in your life.

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Maybe your boss stole your idea and he's throwing you under

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the bus.

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And it's like,

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Oh, you know,

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and it makes you think,

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who am I?

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How am I influenced by that?

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And so we are influenced and we influence people every day

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and we have that chance to make a difference.

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You can volunteer,

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you can give money,

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but the simplest thing is you can smile and say,

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hello, how are you?

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What's your day look like?

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Is there anything I can do for you?

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Every person wants to feel that they're seen,

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heard and understood.

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And we have that ability to be present.

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If we take the time,

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That's really powerful being present,

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not just the trait.

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Hey, how are you today without really expecting an answer?

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You know,

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those generalities,

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but really feeling it and wanting to know from somebody or

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smiling, somebody when you're opening the door,

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those little things.

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And I really do try and do this consciously.

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You walk away feeling good about yourself.

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I don't know if there's any physiological thing going on when

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you do something like that.

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But I walk away feeling uplifted and better.

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Even though I was the one that initiated that positive energy

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Counter, they've done studies.

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And actually there is science to back that when people volunteer,

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they mentor,

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they give back your body changes.

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You do release endorphins and serotonin and things like that.

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They have found that people who do that have less heart

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attacks, they live longer.

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They're generally happier people.

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Yay, yay.

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You're going to live a lot longer To battle all the

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stress I have.

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So I need some counter something.

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And so through this process that you take people is the

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end result.

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Then feeling a stronger purpose of why you're on earth or

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are people going towards,

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should I start a business?

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What are the outcomes that people will get from the whole

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process? There are several.

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One is they will discover their passion and purpose.

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They will have a clear message of what it is they

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want to do.

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They will own that.

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We spend time then visioning.

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What will that look like?

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We sort of create what I call a vision going forward

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three years from now,

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what would your life look like if you're living this life

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that you've just decided that you want and it could be,

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I want more love in my life.

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I want better relationships.

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I want a more spiritually based life.

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It could be,

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I want to start a new business and that's up to

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each person,

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but people really find their passion and purpose.

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Then we create a,

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what I call a three-year vision.

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We work backwards.

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We identify certain areas.

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What is the life they'd love to live?

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Because when we're motivated,

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when we have that opportunity,

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that will keep us focused going forward.

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And I want to say right here,

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that passionate purpose doesn't have to be big.

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You don't have to start a foundation.

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You don't have to start a business if you want.

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That's great,

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but it could be,

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I want to be healthier.

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And what would that look like?

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I want to have better relationships with my family.

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What does that look like?

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So those are some of the things that we talk about

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and you will come away with that.

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But if you have a desire,

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we will work backwards and create a roadmap.

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What are the steps you need to take to become the

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person who is living that life?

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And that was one of the keys that I found out

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over the last few years for myself.

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It wasn't just about having a vision.

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I want to have thriving business or this or that.

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It was who do I need to become that person,

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that successful business woman,

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that woman who speaks at the UN because that's one of

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my dreams.

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That's my passion and purpose eventually.

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Very cool.

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Well, and I'd also like to just comment to our listeners

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that starting a business is not for everybody,

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but being creative could be for everybody.

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So exactly what you're saying.

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Ray is the area of creativity can affect your life in

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many ways.

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I mean,

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here, we're talking specifically business,

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but you don't have to,

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or you might be at a place where you know what

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you really need to keep your nine to five job for

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stability based on what your environment is.

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But it doesn't mean that you can't be expressing your passion

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creatively on the side.

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Maybe it turns into a business later,

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a second career later.

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But what I believe,

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I'm hearing you say,

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Ray, is that you can have the gratitude and the passion

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and the love of your creativity and all those extra physical

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things that happen when you're doing something that you love that

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can then enhance when you get back to the work side,

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what you're doing every day,

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even if it's mundane and you're not thrilled with it,

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you might feel better about it because it's part of a

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master plan or you're doing something that you so love later

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in the day,

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Right? And if we infuse an attitude of I'm giving it

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my best,

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I'm really going to be present.

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We look at work oftentimes,

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and I've done this,

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you know,

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Oh God,

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another responsibility.

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What would happen if we changed our mentality is I get

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to do this today and sort of de enthused it with

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a little enthusiasm and know that six months from now,

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I'm going to have my first record available,

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or I'm going to finish that book.

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That's sitting in the closet.

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And even if you don't print it for anybody but your

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family, and I know people who've done that because you can

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print on demand.

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They've created a memoir for their family and that's all they

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ever wanted to do.

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That's perfectly okay.

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But it was rallying their creativity and infusing the creativity to

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everything you do.

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And it's an outlook about life.

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That there's all and wonder.

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And if we adopt that in everything and we start looking

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for, what's good about what we're doing.

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One of the people I interviewed in my book,

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the creative activists,

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he actually is a high school educator and he studied and

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he has a master's in creativity and creative leadership.

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And he does a program every year with his kids real-world

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problems. And he takes them out in the community,

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comes to them and ask them to find creative solutions.

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We never know how it's going to play out in our

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lives. Talks about his daughter,

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talking about what can we do today?

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That would make it better.

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This is the great story.

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She said,

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she is really disappointed in a picture she was drawing.

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And so she ripped it up and tore it up and

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was so upset and angry.

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And he said,

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what can we do with that?

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And then they started a new picture and she said,

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Oh, that could be the mountain or something.

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And she took the crumpled up paper and attached it to

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this other picture.

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Well, if we start looking from a different perspective about everything,

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we can solve problems at work,

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we can solve problems at home.

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You know,

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if we add that creative element,

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What you just said,

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and I'm going to challenge all of our listeners.

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If you are in a job that you don't enjoy so

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much, for whatever reason,

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I want you to go and approach it with a different

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mindset tomorrow,

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or if you're listening and you're on your way to work

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today and smile more at a customer,

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even if they're a problem customer,

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you know,

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someone's walking in.

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You're like,

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Oh no,

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here they come work on making someone else's day better and

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see how you feel about your job when you're done.

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I mean,

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you might see a whole new way of getting through the

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days, interacting with people and you're giving back to the community

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and those individual people in a much nicer way than just

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a mundane,

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you're going through the routine because you're putting in your hours.

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So that's my challenge for all of you for today.

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That was perfect.

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Sue. That was a great one.

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Challenge yourself.

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If you're meeting with somebody new to find out three fun

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facts about them,

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they'll love it.

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They'll say,

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Oh wow,

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she's really interested in me.

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And you're going to be like,

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Oh, wow.

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Or even just say,

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tell me about your last vacation.

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Something as mundane as that.

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But you can start up something and get personal.

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I'm thinking No going on a trip,

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but I can't figure out where to go.

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Where's the best vacation you ever talk or something like that.

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Those are great for networking too,

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because everyone's like,

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Oh, how are you?

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What do you do?

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What's your business?

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What's your name?

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Like all of those general questions,

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but something more interesting.

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Like that would be great.

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Plus it sets you apart.

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Right? Exactly.

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It was funny.

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One of the programs I did where we did this passion

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thing, and we were talking about,

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where are your favorite places to travel?

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And what do you love to see?

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And two women were traveling around the country looking at lighthouses.

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And so now they became friends and they traveled together.

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That was their passion.

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They wanted to see every lighthouse,

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just like a lot of guys want to go to every

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baseball field in the country.

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Interesting. So just to close up this whole section,

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is there a piece of advice you would give somebody just

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one who isn't going through your process right now,

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but any advice for them in terms of,

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besides my challenge in terms of what they can do to

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start affecting their life and finding their passion,

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I would start something called a visual diary.

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This is that process I started many years ago.

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Just start collecting pictures of things that really intrigued you,

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make you smile,

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make you laugh,

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make you remember something wonderful in the world and just start

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collecting pictures and putting them in a notebook.

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That's as simple as it can get or get a Manila

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envelope and start putting them together.

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And then at some point,

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look at them and say,

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what is here?

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Is there a theme?

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Is there something that's shouting to me?

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Anyone include words,

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do that too.

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This is the kind of stuff you would put on a

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vision board at some point.

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But I think this is a great starting place.

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If you've never done any of this kind of work,

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just start collecting pictures cards.

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When you're going out to the bookstore.

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Even if you take pictures on your phone or books,

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titles, that intrigued you start noticing what you notice,

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What you notice and what resonates with you,

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what you like.

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You may see some thread that's going through the whole thing

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that you never knew before about yourself.

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Exactly. You knew that you Liked it,

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but you didn't see that it was so consistent all the

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way through really interesting.

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I'm going to do that.

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This is just a simple process anybody can do.

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And I really started it years ago because Julia Cameron came

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out with her book the artist's way,

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and she was all about writing.

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And I knew at that point,

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because I was working in a lot of abuse women,

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then they wouldn't leave their diaries out for anybody to see

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or read.

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And they were very hesitant.

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And I said,

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well, let's start a visual diary because it's all personal interpretation,

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whatever pictures you're putting in there is personal,

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right? So there's no judgment.

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Absolutely perfect.

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That idea.

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Let's move now into our reflection section.

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And this is a real quick look at you more on

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a productive way of how you get everything done during your

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day. Is there a natural trait that you see yourself calling

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upon over and over again that helps you get through the

Speaker:

day and be as productive as you are?

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I set ritual the way I start my days with ritual

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and that really propels me through the day.

Speaker:

So I start,

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I light a candle.

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I say a little prayer.

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I usually like incense,

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or sometimes I use a Roma therapy,

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whatever I'm feeling at that moment.

Speaker:

And so I start my day with that.

Speaker:

And I also read my vision.

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I mentioned before I have my own vision of what I

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would like to see.

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So I start my day with gratitude,

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my vision and my ritual.

Speaker:

That's sort of keeps me focused going through the day.

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And when I feel myself waning,

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I'll take a break and I'll go out in nature,

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take a walk,

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and then I will come back and then we'll read my

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vision again.

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Beautiful, perfect ritual.

Speaker:

And I think that's so powerful.

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I don't remember where I read this,

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but a lot of people who are really,

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really productive have a ritual or a routine like that,

Speaker:

that is fulfilling,

Speaker:

but they don't have to think about,

Speaker:

you know,

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it's just the way they start.

Speaker:

Like you get up,

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you know,

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exactly what you're going to do.

Speaker:

And it kind of jump-starts your whole day gets you on

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the path to get going and you don't have to recreate

Speaker:

it because you got the ritual already.

Speaker:

Exactly. Okay.

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So Ray,

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is there any tool that you use that helps you keep

Speaker:

productive or really helps you move forward in your day?

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Basically, Camp has been very,

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very helpful.

Speaker:

Over the years when I was working on my book,

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it was a place I could put everything.

Speaker:

I could then speak with the editors at the time we

Speaker:

could send the notes back and forth and everything was together

Speaker:

because otherwise I have everything spread out all over my computer.

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And I did that last year too,

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with the creative activist summit where I interviewed another 25 liters.

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I never said that,

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but I've interviewed 180 creative leaders around the country in the

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last several years.

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You were holding out on us,

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Ray. Yeah.

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And so I could all the information there,

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their headshots,

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their bio,

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the interview,

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the transcription.

Speaker:

So I have everything together in one place.

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And so when I do something with it,

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it's always together.

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I've never up until now.

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I've been really great about really creating the right kind of

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files and folders on my computer.

Speaker:

The technology piece still sort of eludes me at moments.

Speaker:

And so this was the best way I could to handle

Speaker:

that. Plus then you can give other people access and you

Speaker:

don't have to think God you're out of your email box.

Speaker:

Right. But so everyone who has access to base camp and

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the certain files,

Speaker:

then you put it there once.

Speaker:

And then all you have to do is give access to

Speaker:

people who need it.

Speaker:

So it is a lot less work for sure.

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My virtual assistant can handle a whole lot from there.

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Yeah. Yeah,

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exactly. Super perfect one.

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Okay. And you've mentioned the artist's way already.

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Is there another book besides yours that you would suggest our

Speaker:

listeners look at?

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One of the books that I love is called the Art

Speaker:

of possibility by Roseman stone,

Speaker:

Zander and Benjamin Zander.

Speaker:

And he is actually a conductor.

Speaker:

So he brings back the idea of music,

Speaker:

but what I loved about this book and it added something

Speaker:

really brilliant to my own work that I do with people.

Speaker:

When he was teaching his students,

Speaker:

he wanted to inspire them to do their best to practice.

Speaker:

And he said,

Speaker:

I wanted to take grades away.

Speaker:

What he talked about.

Speaker:

I'm going to give everybody an a,

Speaker:

but to give you an a,

Speaker:

I need you to write,

Speaker:

take a vision of what you're going to become in the

Speaker:

next year,

Speaker:

which is something we had just been talking about is like,

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who do you need to become in the next year to

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be that a student?

Speaker:

So the students would start talking about,

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well, I gave up doubt and I gave up my hours

Speaker:

on TV to spend more time in practice.

Speaker:

Those kind of things.

Speaker:

It was beautiful because it really reflected.

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They had to take the time to think about who do

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I want to be?

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And if I'm going to be the best musician I can

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be, maybe I need to dive into what's holding me back.

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What is the passion that I need to bring me up

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to that next level of performance.

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We need to look at those.

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And one of those topics you're going to be talking about

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on your Facebook live is about what holds us back.

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And if we take a look at those,

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and so I do this now with my clients,

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I ask them,

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I'm going to give you an a,

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but what does that look like one year from now?

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And then I asked them to write about it.

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I love the way you kind of back and into your

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questions. They're so unique.

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And so creative,

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I guess,

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no surprise Ray,

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right? Oh boy.

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Give him his listeners just as you're listening to the podcast

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today. I know you love audio books too.

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So I've teamed up with audible for you to get an

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audio book,

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possibly the artist's way or the art of possibility.

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I'm not sure if those are in audio already,

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but any book that you would like for free on me,

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if you haven't done so already,

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all you need to do is go to gift biz,

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book.com and make a selection.

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Okay? Ray,

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I'm switching this around on you.

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Now it's your turn to dare to dream.

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I'd like to present you with a virtual gift.

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It's a magical box containing unlimited possibilities for your future.

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So this is your dream or your goal of almost unreachable

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Heights that you would wish to obtain.

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Please accept this gift and open it in our presence.

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What's inside your box.

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Well, the first thing which I mentioned before,

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as I would like to speak at the UN,

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so I really want to take time and do a beautiful

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meditation, a heart opening meditation that brings us together to that

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space where I can talk about my dream.

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I love Martin Luther King's.

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I have a dream.

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I have a dream that women and children are loved,

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safe, and empowered to be all they can be to stand

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up in their brilliance,

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power and purpose,

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and that they have autonomy over their bodies and that they

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are free to choose to whomever they want to marry.

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And when all these kinds of images,

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and I want to share these with the women at the

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UN and talk about the power of visioning.

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So that is one piece.

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And then further down the road.

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This is my big dream.

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I would like to be a honoree.

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I can see myself,

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I'm already there.

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The president puts on a metal and I'm sitting there and

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they're taking pictures of all of us,

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all the people who've supported artists around the world.

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And I have a dream to Connect 1 million creative activists

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around the world who want to make a difference using their

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creative gifts and their creative thinking.

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And so I am doing that and I am connecting artists

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and community leaders because I believe the arts are the way

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to open up hearts and minds to have rich new dialogues,

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to engage community and to create actual change and give hope

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to the world,

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give hope to those people who are suffering.

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I have George Clooney,

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he's making the presentation.

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So that's it.

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And they're playing the music of Shaharazad because of a thousand

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stories from Arabian nights.

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And then you have on the screen,

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all these artists and community leaders working with me and the

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projects that they have created around the world.

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One of the women that I love,

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her name is Lori Marshall.

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And she does something called the singing tree.

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And she's created murals everywhere.

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And she brings school kids together.

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They figure out what they need to talk about.

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What is necessary in their community.

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What do they need?

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So one community was talking about what can we do that?

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Won't put us in jail and live our lives.

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And they start talking about creativity and maybe it's music and

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writing and art.

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And they created this beautiful tree.

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And then it became part of a dialogue.

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They took it to another school to talk about it.

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What can we do to take care of ourselves that will

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cost us money?

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Won't end up in jail,

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those kinds of things,

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Right? Well,

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you know,

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it's a shame that you don't have enough detail behind your

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dreams. That's one of my best skills.

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When you ask,

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what do I do?

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I really help people.

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And that's part of the process is I help them give

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the details to their dreams because so many times people say,

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well, I want a boyfriend.

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What does that look like?

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You're walking down the street,

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he's holding your hand.

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You're taking a handsome carriage ride in central park.

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You're eating strawberries and champagne.

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So I have the details because when you add the details

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and you make it,

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you use all your senses,

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it becomes more powerful.

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It's more attractive to the universe.

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You're creating the energy behind it.

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Absolutely. I love all of that.

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Now, if our listeners want to learn more about you and

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about your program,

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where would they go?

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It's the winning adventure.com.

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And you can write me there.

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I would love to give any of your listeners a one

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hour free coaching session.

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No way.

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Yeah. Oh my gosh.

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You guys,

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how would they get in touch with you for that?

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Okay. You can write me at Ray,

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R a E L U S K I n@aol.com.

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That's my personal email.

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So I'm bound to get it.

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If you want to start by going to my website,

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I have something called a visioning guide,

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which gives you some little input about how you can start

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visioning for yourself if that's where you want to start,

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because I'm not,

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everybody's ready to work.

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One-on-one but you'll also see it,

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the Winnie adventure that you've got this opportunity to just play.

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And I really believe play,

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explore experiment.

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Don't put any pressure on yourself.

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Just identify yourself that you heard on here,

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and I'd be happy to connect with you.

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Wonderful. Thank you so much for that.

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That's a huge give really appreciate it.

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Play, explore experiment,

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wonderful Ray,

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such a powerful conversation.

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Thank you so much for sharing,

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for telling us all about creativity and leading to passion and

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leading to purpose in life.

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I mean,

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we're all here.

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We might as well be number one,

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making the most of this life that we have for ourselves,

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but also giving to other people,

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which is exactly how it turns around and is beneficial for

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you as well.

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So thank you so much.

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I really appreciate everything you shared today.

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And may your candle always burn bright?

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Where are you in your business building journey,

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whether you're just starting out or already running a business,

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and you want to know your setup for success.

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Find out by taking the gift biz quiz,

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access the quiz from your computer at Vic dot L Y

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slash gift biz quiz or from your phone by texting gift

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biz quiz to four four two,

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two, two.

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Thanks for listening and be sure to join us for the

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next episode.

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Today's show is sponsored by the ribbon print company,

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make sure to jump over and subscribe to the show on

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iTunes. That way you'll automatically get the newest episodes when they

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