Ian chats with a Forbes Business Council Member, Entrepreneur Magazine contributor, and Duke Corporate Education member, Simon Severino. Simon and Ian talked about beautiful moments of real connection and exploring different experiences in different aspects of life and business.
About The Guest:
Simon Severino helps business owners in SaaS and services discover how to be able to run their company more efficiently, which results in sales that soar. He created the Strategy Sprints® Method that doubles revenue in 90 days by getting owners out of the weeds. Simon is the CEO and founder of Strategy Sprints, a global team of certified Strategy Sprints® Coaches that offers a customized strategy to help clients gain market share and work in weekly sprints, resulting in fast execution. He is also a Forbes Business Council Member, Entrepreneur Magazine contributor, and Duke Corporate Education member.
About the Host:
Ian Hawkins is the Founder and Host of The Grief Code. Dealing with grief firsthand with the passing of his father back in 2005 planted the seed in Ian to discover what personal freedom and legacy truly are. This experience was the start of his journey to healing the unresolved and unknown grief that was negatively impacting every area of his life. Leaning into his own intuition led him to leave corporate and follow his purpose of creating connections for himself and others.
The Grief Code is a divinely guided process that enables every living person to uncover their unresolved and unknown grief and dramatically change their lives and the lives of those they love. Thousands of people have now moved from loss to light following this exact process.
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Ian Hawkins 0:02
Are you ready, ready to release internal pain to find confidence, clarity and direction for your future, to live a life of meaning, fulfillment and contribution to trust your intuition again, but something's been holding you back. You've come to the right place. Welcome. I'm a Ian Hawkins, the host and founder of The Grief Code podcast. Together, let's heal your unresolved or unknown grief by unlocking your grief code. As you tune into each episode, you will receive insight into your own grief, how to eliminate it and what to do next. Before we start by one request. If any new insights or awareness land with you during this episode, please send me an email at info at the and Hawkins coaching.com. And let me know what you found. I know the power of this work, I love to hear the impact these conversations have. Okay, let's get into it.
Welcome, everyone, and welcome to today's guests. Simon Severino. How are you, Simon?
Simon Severino 1:09
I'm excited to be here. Hi, Ian. Hi, everybody.
Ian Hawkins 1:12
Excellent. I think you're a bit of a private podcast, you probably on a fair few a week, what do you find that you're telling your story in a unique way every time
Simon Severino 1:25
I those six podcast interviews per day. One is a host. And you know, some of them are repetitive. But some are beautiful moments of real, real connection. And there is magic happening. And I explore people in topics and parts of myself that I'm surprised to find. So
Ian Hawkins 1:49
I really liked. Excellent. Well, hopefully we can find some of those moments today as well. Excellent. So Simon, can you start by telling us a little bit about what you do.
Simon Severino 2:04
So it's 21 years that I do one thing I did fall in love with the big problem of go to market, so sales and dominating a market with a product or with an offer. And that's such a big problem that it takes multiple days, if not months to solve for a team. And that's why for me, it's intellectually challenging. And I'm so proud. If we, for example, with the BMW team, we had six days, before we allowed ourselves to get out of that room because we had to come up with an impossible solution. The solution was, we need a strategy that's better than all the so how do you come up with that solution? All products are great, there is no obvious way of solving it. So we have we said okay, it's multiple days. And we we get out when we have it. So it took us six days, 48 people. And I was so proud when I was then coming back from Bavaria, here to Vienna, and I was a better husband and a better dad here at home because I said, I have applied my resources, my knowledge, my being my presence in the best possible way. I gave my best, I feel at peace. And then I was you know, more relaxed, the more fun that I'm a better husband. When I'm in that zone. And there's a variation of me, we can we will explore them all.
Ian Hawkins 3:40
I love that. And I was reading an article just today talking about how men lose so much of their power, even from the moment they have children because it shifts their typical masculine energy. But allowing mid space to go out and do what it is that they do really well. And be comfortable doing that and realize what a gift that is it allows them to fuel every other part of their life. So I love how you've highlighted that in what you do. So you said 48 people, but I'd love to hear your part in that. Are you the strategy guy? Are you the big picture thinker? What is it that you bring through your business that's unique?
Simon Severino 4:28
Yes, we are a strategy advisors. So in that moment, we were five people moderating 48, top executives of this team. And we had to solve the big problems like how do we enter each market in which way the strategy problems and on the on the practical level? I was asking those questions. So who will be doing what what's the right thing to do? How we will do it and who will do what who does China who does Singapore and I was literally writing it down At that time on flip charts, now we're digital. But in that time, that was six years ago, it was on flip charts. And so it's literally writing down. So helping people document their thinking process, helping them hold the space for much bigger truths than they would be able to explore. If they have to do it all alone, then energy dissipates. But if I hold the space, prepare the data structure, the decision making process, then they can stay in their zone of genius, which is building cars that are better than other cars. Yeah, they don't have to think about strategy. So they think about what they know. And I hold the space for the rest. That's the strategy screens method, we create the landscape of which decisions you need when and what's the order of things and how you get. So we come with the process, and we hold the space, and we document the results. And they can stay in their zone of genius and just know unleash their brilliance and bring magic to the world. That's the collaboration with the strategy advisors. They the geniuses of their field. And that's how we work.
Ian Hawkins 6:09
Okay, excellent. I'm want to dig a bit deeper on how you personally work. So what's your zone of genius when it comes to just life in general?
Simon Severino 6:20
So 21 years ago, I started falling in love with this problem. And my, my superpower is very complex things, making them very simple, very practical, and bringing to light green and green now. Yep. So for example, this team was thinking, should we think about Elon Musk or Lexus, etc? And it was like, right now? What are what are your users in need of right now? And what's the map right now? So what does China need? What does the US need? What does Europe need? And so I was basically bringing the energy into the here and now and turning that into an execution plan, and making sure that each country really executes. So it's also the accountability part afterwards in the follow up, because most people think follow up is boring. Yeah. But that's actually where stuff happens. That this is where you know, the results appear and your ideas materialize. So complex situation, making that simple bringing him into here now, and making sure execution happens. That's my superpower. And, you know, year after year, so I was the consultant. But then, of course, I was the bottleneck of the whole thing, because I cannot coach, a team in Paris and the team in London in the same day. So I brought in people, I started teaching that, to my colleagues, it became a certification model. And now there are certified strategies, Prince coaches on the whole planet, and my role has changed. It's not about my magic, it's about I am transitioned from being the star to being the galaxy. So now we are a galaxy of stars. And my job is to curate the whole ecosystem, like a garden. Every three every plant have everything who needs water, who needs How are we doing with minerals? My role now?
Ian Hawkins 8:30
What what do we need to weed out? Yes, exactly. Have you found that when you've switched from being the star to being part of the galaxy, has that allowed you to strengthen the time you spend in your genius? Or have you had to maybe dissolve some of that because you're being called to do bigger picture roles?
Simon Severino 9:01
Great question. My wife said, what you are going you are removing yourself as a coach, they cannot book you as a coach, but they come for you. How will they react? And I was like, I don't know. I don't know. But it's the right thing to do. I don't know how to do it. But it's the right thing to do. So I go with my heart because it's the right thing to do. Because otherwise, how can I help somebody in Paris and in Singapore the same day? I can't. Yeah, so I don't know. But on Monday, we will find out. And so on Monday happens first time that a client starts with a sprint they say all right, we want to double our revenue in the next four months. We need a sprint coach. Let's start as they are at the I call here is your sprint coach. And you start on Tuesday. And they go Alright, cool.
Ian Hawkins 9:53
Yeah, because I want to add
Simon Severino 9:55
my wife. Yeah, I come back to my wife. Hey, there was zero drama. nobody misses me. It's so much easier than we think it was just an ego, anxiety. And I would love to talk about ego and non ego because that was my main learning, actually.Ian Hawkins:
Oh, well, let's do that now. Because I want to get more into the nitty gritty because a lot of individuals will be listening to this. And I want to, I want to hear more about the magic of your genius and how you actually are able, like, what processes do you take people through to be able to get that strategy to simplify things. But let's come back to that instead, let's talk ego. So one of the best learnings I had was, when I coach said to me, our ego still serves a purpose. But it is there to serve us not to be our master. And that was a real game changer for me. Because up until that point, it was all very much for that ego lens. So tell me about your experience and how you've learned to make a change there.Simon Severino:
So I basically think of the world as being two things, there is a there is truth and the resolution. And literally today I was I was talking to my coach who is in California. And he said, Oh, Simon, you stepped into the matrix again. Basically, I went into the illusion world again. So I live in two words. One is eternal truth. And one is the momentary, illusionary Maya. And so what is it? The truth is, I am eternal awareness. I am love, I am the protector. I'm presence, I am love and life, I'm understanding. That's what I am, am I'm I'm always this, there was no beginning, this was never born. And it cannot die. Because it was never born. It's just awareness, understanding and love. That's who I am. And that's what everybody is, there is nothing else than that. That is the truth. And it's eternal. And on top of that, because that will be just boring, because everybody, everything is fine. And so that would be boring for everybody. If you have a religion, insert your religion in here, your gods will be bored to death. Everything's fine. So what would your gods do? They would say, Oh, come on, let's play something. And then they both create different mirroring things and manifestations, etc. So that's yeah, there is something going on here. And that is the word of illusion, or my coach calls it the matrix. But it's basically this is when I go on YouTube, and I start watching the price of Bitcoin going up and down, up and down. Today, I'm thinking, Should I buy Amazon because it is in a dip. That's the word of illusion, I can come from the place of my eternal truth. And then yes, I have my plans for entering Amazon exiting Amazon. But there are no emotions, and I am not attached to it. I'm coming from the truth, being somebody who is a dad and an investor. And it's part of the role of being a dad to protect wealth. But I can also come to that same chart, from the illusion side, and you feel the illusion as soon as you come from anxiety. So as soon as you feel, or let's say with me, as soon as I feel that there is something lacking something missing, oh, if I don't buy Amazon at 114, it will go to 118. And then I miss Baghdad. As soon as you feel that as soon as I feel that I am now in the ego, because I'm attached to the illusion that something is lacking, something's missing. While in in the truth, nothing is ever missing. And so, when I see that, I say to myself, Okay, one step back, center yourself, I either do a small breathing, tech technique or some dancing or some running something that is in the body, not in the mind, because ego and mind go very well together. So I go back to the body. And then I, I come back later to the chart. When I am detached when I'm in the right, centered state, which is that eternal state of being an investor's doing the right decisions and letting go of control after the decision. That's it, buddy. These days with me overnight. And if I have anxiety, etc, I know Oh, that's the ego. Let go.Ian Hawkins:
Yeah, and thank you for sharing that wisdom, because I think the bit that I took out of that is the Getting back to the physical, because because the mind and the ego, playing nicely together, but you bring it to the physical, you're able to create that circuit breaker. That's excellent, thank you. I love the analogy around that concept of getting that boredom and then whatever your God coming in and going well, we can throw something at you. So not a bad thing. It's because it's being playful, so that you can actually find change and find something more joyful and more fulfilling. So tell me like, how often are you having to take clients through that process, to take them out of anxiety, or take them out of worry or fear, and bring them back to making it more playful, and bringing them back into their body to actually step into that place of eternal truth.Simon Severino:
They come to us because they want to increase sales. So we we mostly talk about numbers and strategies and tactics. But in between some, some weeks, their sprint coach says, Hey, your weekly dashboard is not going up. It's kind of stalling. And that's usually the moment and then that sprint coach comes to the Monday meeting and tells me Simon, because every Monday we go through all clients, and then I go, Sam, their sales numbers are not going up. And this is where I coach the coach. And we go deeper and say, Okay, let's see what is the communication pattern inside of the team, inside of the individuals of the team, because we have usually the business owner, one person from operations, one from marketing, one from sales. And so we then have to if the numbers are not going up week by week, the sales numbers, then we go to positioning, if positioning is fine, but the numbers are not going up, then we go to mindset. And when we go to mindset, we look at all these things that we are exploring right now. So it's, it's not the main thing that we do, but we do it. As soon as something in the sales process is not working, then we have to go to mindset and say, Okay, what's blocking us actually, and and then many times the obstacles are internal obstacles.Ian Hawkins:
I love that. So even that comes in a process, you start with the things that are going to be easiest to solve. And if there's still something going on, then we go to okay, what's playing out? From a mental perspective?Simon Severino:
Yeah, because as you say, ego is a tool is a vehicle for magic, actually. And so if you enjoy it, and if you enjoy the drama, and if the drama is moving the numbers up every week, Fine, let's enjoy the party. But if that becomes a negative drama of oh, we're not reaching the people we want to reach, we're not reaching the sales number, then we know Okay, something is stalling here. And then we have to go there and say, what's, what's your inner picture of this? For example, some people think that doing say something dirty, they shouldn't have to check mindset. Or they think that, you know, after after asking something and you get rejected, you should stop asking, well, then we have to go through the mindset plays, and then I start doing role plays with them. It's okay, I'm the client you are this is send me something. And then we play through and then they say, Oh, hey, it's a play. It's like, it's like children playing Hey, do you want to be my friend? Let's see, do you want to play this? No, something else? Okay, what do we want to play? Bringing it again into that flow of, of playfulness that can be enjoyed. This is actually one blockage that many of our clients have, that at some point, they feel that sales is something you know, dirty or something to avoid. Because they lost the connection to actually it's joy, it's playful connection.Ian Hawkins:
I find it's when people get caught on the outcome. Instead of like you described, make it playful, make it joyful, Be of service. Everything else takes care of itself. Yeah. I've been fascinated as a like, someone who's big on sport, I've been fascinated with the zone and getting into flow. And I don't know if you're familiar with Steve Kotler his work, he's got a couple of great books around the concept and, and there are a number of people, as I'm sure you know, how would you describe to someone else for our listeners, one how to find that zone of genius for yourself? And two, how do you then consistently step into that zone of genius so that you're getting the most out of your day and, and the enjoyment that comes with that?Simon Severino:
Today I was telling my coach about things that I want to stop doing. And when I told him, my voice changed. So you might find it in, in the tone of your voice, actually, which in the end is a heart, a heart vibration thing, a heart intensity that you feel when you are aligned. When you're in integrity, a, your voice is different. So I was telling him, I'm going to do more of this and less of this, and my voice was very clear. And he said, someone who you are in your shamanic power right now. And I was feeling it. Because five seconds later, I was then explaining why. And usually, as soon as you start explaining why you are diluting your energy, you are not believing it yourself. And my voice changed. My voice was me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me, me. Very different voice than when I told him I'm gonna stop doing this. It was a very clear voice. And so you feel it actually, in your, in your, in your, in your chest region? And, and in your voice? When you're aligned in something? This on a very practical level, right? Yeah. And, and also other people will give you the feedback that this is you, I feel you. This is this in alignment. This is what you stand for. So I usually check two things. One is, you know, my heart coherence, or how does it feel in my body and in my voice when I say it, and the other one is feedbacks from the people that I really care about their feedback. It's a finite number of people. It's less than 10, that I really care about their feedback. And I asked those people, and it's not just friends and family, it's people who would tell me hard stuff, tough love. And they are, it's a handful of people that I trust, they are in my private mastermind, and I would go immediately there, I have a 24/7 selection with my private mastermind, I would immediately go there, do a quick video and ask for feedback.Ian Hawkins:
Fantastic. And having those people that are detached emotionally from your day to day life so important, isn't it? Because as you said, they give you the tough love the honest truth and cut through a lot of the noise that might be there otherwise,Simon Severino:
exactly. Yes. Yeah. If I asked my wife I get mainly support right, but I asked those people, they are distant enough and truthful enough and leader enough in their field to call out my my BS.Ian Hawkins:
Yeah, excellent. Now, it's the Grief Code podcast. So we want to dive into the sort of things that you've overcome, to actually get to where you are now. Because from my experience, people who have had great apologies for the dog, people who have had great success have overcome different challenges along the way. And their success and the strategies they've learned have come from overcoming real life experiences. So where did that start for you? What was the moment that that changed thingsSimon Severino:
you know, when I was three years old, my parents divorced and that was quite traumatizing for me for the next 20 years. I would feel like something is not right in in me. So everything was fine then I join the family and the family falls apart so I must be the problem.Ian Hawkins:
We are that we you were at that age?Simon Severino:
No, of course not. I in how did I feel it in my body like I don't know being sick many times being alone many times being sad when I look at pictures of three years old, I look like sad and sad boy. So that was how it manifested at that time. So when I was 2025 I started going to psychotherapy to find words for it to explore what was going on. And and so I started having some words for it and realizing that I don't feel self confidence self worth, I feel like I will be rejected again. I will be alone. If I am like I am people will run away in different directions from me. So, I cannot be good enough, I cannot be loved. That was the outcome of many years of psychotherapy. And still I was not feeling loved. And I was seeing it because it was going out there in search for love. Now I was, when I go to the club, I try to dance in a way that can be loved. Wow is dancing. So cool, right? When I talk to somebody, I try to make jokes so that they laugh. And then I fell in love for three seconds during that laugh. But then the three seconds are over. And I'm back to square one, not feeling loved. And so that whole psychotherapy thing for 10 years, 15 years, brought me to more words and more eloquence. But the main problem was still there, I was feeling separate, and I was feeling that something was missing. And I found out later. And actually that was more through yoga, which started with physical practices, but then went much deeper. And and now my spiritual teacher who is a guru is Sadhguru is his name. He he has programs where we go through that on on all levels to go back from this illusion of separation and find the back to a there is nothing missing, everything is fine. But that's the ego whenever you are in the ego, the ego has always something to complain. Because that's what the ego does is a drama machine. So it's like a blanket, which is always too short, wherever wherever you pull it, the feet will be out there or a hand or your head if there is nothing everything under the blanket when you are in that ego perspective. So it's about cultivating for me I found the answer, cultivating both perspectives, the ego perspective, but also the eternal perspective. And so it started with meditation and being in that state also changing actually, the way I train the way a workout and the way I eat and sleep. And then and now it's it's about every moment right now, is the moment am I talking from ego? Or am I talking from that eternal place? And when I play with my kids in that moment, when I talk to my colleagues to my clients in that moment, rebalancing, from which place Am I coming right now, from the eternal place, or from an ego place?Ian Hawkins:
So you describe that with so much clarity and in such simple terms, but I imagined for many, that creates a state of confusion, because suddenly everything that they've known is taken away, which I imagine is part of the process doing 10 to 15 years of psychotherapy. So in a work environment, because I'm sure you come across this regularly when you are taking people for Sprint sessions, is that there would be an element of confusion. Is that something that you use to your advantage? Like how do you see confusion in that state? Does it is that is that a state to help people to transform quickly? Or is it something that you need to work through? Separately,Simon Severino:
we start always with the three things that are in their control, there are only three things that are in your control if you run a business 95% is not in your control. So that's confusing Anyway, forget it. Let it go. Yeah, we go to the three the only three things that are in their control right now. The daily habits weekly habits monthly habit. And that's how we cut through you know, I learned from one of my mentors he said someone Yes, you can solve problems you are great at solving problems. But the best way to deal with problems is to this solve them and I said what is this solving? Is that you don't even tap into the problem space. So there is solve and it sounds great, but I don't know what do you mean okay. And now I get it because you can focus on the 95% that are not in your control then you're always confused or within luck, always despairing. And you're you need to hustle because you can never solve it. Or you just focus directly on the five things on the 5% things daily habit weekly every Monday with that I actually no control. So what I did is I wrote the whole book is the strategy Sprint's book about just these three things and how you can do it so you wake up in the morning you do these three things. So you stay in your zone and in there I have brought in everything that I learned from my guru Sadhguru. Everything that I learned from business coaches, everything that I learned from the BMWs, etc, but also everything that I learned about flow states of theme. And I never mentioned all these things, because I keep it simple. I just say, alright, this is your daily habit. This is what you do every day. Write down how did you spend your time today? And how will you spend it tomorrow? And these are the reflective questions that help you review it quickly in five minutes. I've baked in all the power for questions of all my past coaches, then there is a weekly habit, your marketing numbers, sales numbers and operations numbers on one simple spreadsheet. Everything that I ever learned from Team flows and peak states of teams is in that three numbers visualized every seven days as a team, as you know, from flow states, and then the monthly habit, are we doing the right thing in the right way budgeting and investing? Where do we cut costs? Where do we reinvest them in? Where are we winning? Where are we not winning? Less than monthly habit? So three simple things that bring together what I've learned in the last 21 years from you know, from psychotherapy, to Zen, to yoga, most dates, strategy, work execution, team management, team leadership in the app, it's this three habits, daily habit, weekly, habit, monthly habit. So when you ask me, How do I manage confusion, I say, I swim away from it. I don't enter that zone.Ian Hawkins:
Dissolve it.Simon Severino:
Because you can focus on stuff, you know, if you trigger me, let's say you say something that triggers me for example, Bitcoin or Amazon triggers me a lot. If you say something about that. I will feel oh my god, oh my god, I'm triggered. I'm, I'm I have anxiety, I have a feel of luck. How do I handle that? I just swim away from it, I will redirect my attention to the things that I want to focus on daily habit weekly with monthly habits. And I do this a couple times in that hour. That's triggered emotion will gradually go down. It's like a wave of the ocean. Yeah, it comes up it goes down. And so I go back to what I want to focus on that other thing gradually loses power loses energy loses intensity fades out. As I am focusing on this. That's basically how I deal with it.Ian Hawkins:
I love it. So you go back to process, go back to habit. discipline to make sure you're doing it every day, every week, every month. And stay out of the 95% Yeah, so good. You mentioned you went through that divorce of your parents at a young age really impacted your self confidence and your self worth. How do you go from there to psychotherapy? Did you have like a a moment where everything fell apart? What was the trigger that actually take you into a place that you were ready to get help?Simon Severino:
I was running around looking for love looking for love looking for love looking for love and I felt like this is like a venial. That's that stopped spinning ready. It's always the same song here. I'm stuck. And so as that's the definition of neurosis, right, when you hear the same song every time and the album is gone. Hey, I'm neurotic. And so I I didn't go live but some form of okay, what do you do when you when you have a neurosis, right. And so Freud came up Sigmund Freud and I was in the city of Vienna. So there are tons of psycho analysts here is okay, let's do this couch thing. And it was a good idea. It Yeah, it's connected me to these very, very hard to express feelings. And so I found some words for it, at least. So they were less driving me now. And I was a little bit more in a reflecting mode than in an acting out mode, you know, just running from club to club, looking for love. Instead of that I was, you know, talking to a friend more and talking to my psychoanalyst about this. So I was getting a little bit more in control of what I feel actually by just getting word For itIan Hawkins:
powerful. Now I know dealing with unresolved grief on a regular basis that when when we suppress emotions, then they find a way of bubbling to the surface. Now, what you described, how you do it now is clearly spoken by someone who's done a lot of that work already. They've, they've managed to process a lot of the emotions and you've got those strategies to stay balanced. But in those early days, when you're suddenly going from this space, where your words feeling neurotic, like, how did you What were the first the first steps that you use the first processes you used to go from that place where you were being impacted by emotions? I know you mentioned naming them were a good first step. What for me, it was like going to go from zero to 100, in my anger, when when I was like, under pressure. So what was the experience like for you? And how did you manage it in those early days when you're only learning about these tools and techniques?Simon Severino:
I'm thinking a lot about this, because I have three children now. And of course they have, it's emotional, right? And they are emotional, I'm emotional. We're all emotional. Yeah. And anger is always there. And, and as and also joy, and also sadness. It's part of the day. So I'm thinking on different levels. On one level, am I thinking? Would I recommend them to go into psychotherapy? What would I and recommending is too strong? Because they don't listen anyways, to our parents. It's more of what do I live in front of them in terms of role modeling? Yeah, that they later might pick up or not? So they might listen in 10 years to this episode on YouTube? Maybe? Yeah, maybe not. And so that's one thing, would I even recommend psychotherapy? Or would I say, hey, go directly the yoga path, the spiritual path, don't try to dissolve anger, don't try to manage anger, there is nothing to manage. It's the drama. And it's not in your control anyway. And it's fine. Because on a deeper level, you return a lot of your return on understanding and everything that's here is fine is a manifestation of that. And has some deeper meaning that you don't know. But you don't need to know it. The collective intelligence knows it. And on the other side, it's how I feel, you know, in the day to day, okay, we have to go to kindergarten, please now, put on your shoes. No. Okay, what do I do now? Okay, I come from ego and say you put on your shoes? Or what would love do? What would understanding do? And so it's a mini dialogue with myself recheck from which position? And what else? Do I have options? What else can I say? That is not just do this now.Ian Hawkins:
It feels like a lot like what you were describing before about the sales process, making it playful, right? At the Exactly.Simon Severino:
As soon as you see your options shrinking, there was something going wrong in there and make it wide again. So what are the options? Is there really just one pair of shoes? Is there just one way of walking out the door? Maybe we can prepare for kindergarten 15 minutes earlier, so we have some buffer time. And then we don't have to argue about little things. And I know, upfront that children you know, they will find the butterfly, they will find something and they will follow that thing. What if I plan 20 minutes more for that process, and we actually get to enjoy it. Because they become my teacher in being present, that when the butterfly is here, I actually can experience the butterfly.Ian Hawkins:
So good. That's a great metaphor for life, right? Yes. To me, our children are our greatest teachers. And so mine are now 15 and eight. And so new lessons, but just the same, getting plenty of plenty of them. And I love that you describe that because it be a lot of parents who listen to this show. And even that simplicity of like, maybe we could just start earlier. So as a parent, I'm sure you can relate to this is that there are different challenges that are thrown up at you that you're not expecting and usually it's mirroring something that you've got going on yourself that that needs attention. So given you had that experience of divorce, what have you been able to bring the father that you were determined to make different from your own experience?Simon Severino:
One very important learning is that the parent relationship comes first. So there is an order of things in systems. And so in systems theory and in constellation work, you learn pretty quickly, that there is an order of things. First comes the relationship between the parents, you have to nurture that you have to prioritize that you have to put in time in your calendar. It's our Friday nights, date, time, it's sacred, it's organized, it's in the calendars. And then there is single time, the Monday evening is her evening, and she can do whatever she wants, and have the kids etc. So it's creating support structures for that relationship. First, you have, if you don't do it, the default mode is you will just be parents all the time. And then you are amazing parents, congrats, you have won the parents Award went out, you wouldn't burn out. Because it never ends.Ian Hawkins:
Yet. They're relentless. And your relationship suffers?Simon Severino:
Exactly. And the foundation for you being great parents is you being lovers first being you know, on this journey together, which is a very long, very intense, sacred journey with all the emotions and roller coasters that are in there. But it's a secret journey, and it comes first. So you have to make time for that. Otherwise, you will just have no time, forget about it delayed. And, and then you burn out as a parent, and when you burn out there, then you have conflicts with your kids, etc. And then you are in a mess.Ian Hawkins:
Yep. I've been there. I know that feeling will said, Now, as you say there's an order of things. So you've got a company you run, which it sounds like you're very much hands on. You've got three young children and a wife? How do you make sure you prioritize the most important thing? Which is your own? Well being through all of that?Simon Severino:
That's a question that I asked myself every day. And the current answer is my daily flow. So remember the daily habit? I do. I do have all the things that I share with my clients with you guys. I do everyday. And I only share the things that I do everyday because otherwise I don't believe in them. And I'm share them. Yeah. So my daily flow is I write down what's good for me and what does happen when and it has to start with me time. So me time is first. When you say order of things, I have to take care of my masculine energy of my feminine energy of my general state, my body, my mind my emotions first. If I don't nurture myself, nobody will. Yeah. And when you run a global company, you're a father, you're a husband, etc. You're a dad. Nobody thinks about you. You serve everybody. So how can you serve everybody by first replenishing your batteries. And so the first two hours of my day, and soon it will be the first three hours of my day, our me time. Excellent. And they are in the calendar, and they're called me time have a special color. And they are before everybody wakes up. So thanks to yoga, I can wake up very early because I'm full of energy, my body's radiant of energy. So five o'clock in the morning to eight o'clock in the morning. It's me time. And soon it will be four o'clock. But because I feel that my body's adapting to the yoga practice is getting even more waked up even earlier. So this is without waking me up. I my body stands up, I'm there. I'm present. So there is no How do you call it there's no snoozing button or anything from the external. I just wake up. And and so the first hours are me time, and I do only things that are good for me. And then, and then I serve the kids that serve my wife. I serve everybody else until the evening and then it's dinner time and it's playful time and it's having fun with friends and family.Ian Hawkins:
Excellent. Now you mentioned early on when you were talking about your work, use the word energy repeatedly. Now you're I can tell you're coming from Very spiritual side and esoteric way of thinking, how do you bring those sort of concepts into a corporate world which perhaps, are seeing things very logically? All in their thinking, and rather than coming from their heart at what sort of language able to use to help bring them into that state without scaring them off, perhaps with language that they may not understand?Simon Severino:
Yes, I, I intentionally use words that they use. So here, I use words that I imagine this audience can work with. Yep, if I am within an engineering team in North Germany, I will use words that they use and are comfortable with, to express the same thing. In the end. It's about what's the right thing to do as a team, and what's the best way to do it. That's the journey we are all on. And in the end, you need to have the energy so that you can be of service to the people you are here to serve. And in the different contexts that will use different words. This is something that I learned from my guru Sadhguru is somebody who is every day on multiple interviews, and he talks the language of the people that are listening to him. And I'm literally learning from him how to do that, how to express things in a way that your current person that you're talking to, is able to take. So I'm very careful about the words that I use. And I try to use the most simple, most universal words for things.Ian Hawkins:
Yeah, and that's been really evident today. So I can absolutely see how that happens. Now, clearly, English isn't your first language. And now you're working in Vienna, did you say? Yeah, so how many different languages do you speak?Simon Severino:
So I was born in Italy, my first language was Italian. And then I went to Austria, I learned German. And then the Internet came the whole world became just one big village that talks English. So I was learning English. Now. That's my third language now.Ian Hawkins:
Yeah. I'm curious, with that change of location, and then having to learn a language? Is there a part of you that still craves that simplicity of just talking your native tongue? Or? Or is it just just business? Or it's just life or like that? How do you see that? In Australia, we typically for those with an Anglo background, there's only one language spoken. And whenever I've traveled, I feel quite inadequate, because everyone else in the world seems to talk multiple languages. So this is kind of something that we don't necessarily take as, as a given around different languages. So yeah, I'd love to hear more about that place.Simon Severino:
I'm, I read the biography once of a systemic thinker, and he said, since my parents were divorced, as a kid, I became multilingual as a kid. So he said, basically, I have to understand those different communication patterns. And that has created a complexity in my head that prepared me for multiple languages and for becoming a scientist. I wasn't resonating with that. So for me, having Italian and German is language in my world, has always opened up a little bit, and created a complexity for me that then became normal. So when I had to learn a third language, it wasn't actually that hard. The hardest thing so I, I booked coaches or trainers to help me the hardest thing was to learn to talk into a camera. Oh my god. Oh my god. For years. I was looking at the camera, and I would freeze I was literally I was wearing a suit and tie so I was masked. And I was talking to this thing. And I didn't know is there anybody on the other side? Who am I talking to? And so I had this trainer and she said that she was a native in English and she was giving you the basics of English and how to say things and but also she will say, Simon, imagine this camera is your kids. That changed everything. Because then now I have somebody I'm talking to and also open my heart because when I talk to my kids, I talk from the heart, not from the brain. That's very helpful. And the rest of us just practice.Ian Hawkins:
And that's a bit of a recurring theme for you is that is coming from the heart, not just the head, and then practice. And clearly, like, you've mentioned, numerous coaches, numerous mentors, like you come across as someone who has learned so so much. So what would be something you would pass on to the Grief Code audience about maybe them overcoming whatever challenges they're experiencing now, something to guide them through that to the other side in a way that they're going to be able to feel like they can be empowered to take action.Simon Severino:
You are not alone in in this. And, and whatever this is for you. There are so many wonderful teachers and mentors. So I have my teachers and mentors around me in my private mastermind. And I'm opening that up for other people who need also this kind of mentorship and 24/7 space. And so there are masterminds that you can use. There are books and podcasts that are helpful, this podcast is helpful. I don't read a book strategy sprints, which is written from the heart written with law, it's really helpful. And I'm getting the emails of people who said, Wow, I have more time, I have more joy with my kids now because the business runs smoother. And so you are not alone. And there is a ton of resources out there. Just reach out I'm, I've shared that I reach out when I need it. And and that makes the process easier. There are masters in the different processes and it's the world is full of helpful processes.Ian Hawkins:
Fantastic. Yeah, absolutely. You're not alone. And there's always help there. If you just reach out. Well said. Simon, thank you so much for sharing so openly. It was wonderful to hear your immense wisdom and particularly some of those key strategies you use and the processes, those daily habits and rituals. Fantastic. Thank you so much. I appreciate you investing this time here.Simon Severino:
Thank you again for holding this space and for going deep into these conversations.Ian Hawkins:
You're welcome. Thanks again.
I hope you enjoyed this episode of The Grief Code podcast. Thank you so much for listening. Please share it with a friend or family member that you know would benefit from hearing it too. If you are truly ready to heal your unresolved or unknown grief. Let's chat. Email me at info at Ian Hawkins coaching.com You can also stay connected with me by joining the Grief Code community at Ian Hawkins coaching.com forward slash The Grief Code and remember, so that I can help even more people to heal. Please subscribe and leave a review on your favorite podcast platform.