When Megan Nolan found herself in a crumbled heap on the floor, she knew that she needed to create a new path forward for herself. This is her story, and she is resilient.
Trigger Warning: The Resilience Project provides an open space for people to share their personal experiences. Some content in this podcast may include topics that you may find difficult. The listener’s discretion is advised.
About the Guest:
Goal-driven women hire Megan Nolan to leverage the power of intentional pauses to feel amazing in their bodies and be holistically healthy and successful.
She is the creator of the Power Pause Method, which combines the tools of Yoga, movement, breathwork, and mental fitness to help them be more productive and profitable.
Wake The Warrior Within: https://www.megan-nolan.com/a/2147517463/LNA7EMFe
About the Host:
Blair Kaplan Venables is an expert in social media marketing and the president of Blair Kaplan Communications, a British Columbia-based PR agency. She brings fifteen years of experience to her clients which include global wellness, entertainment, and lifestyle brands. As a pioneer in the industry, she has helped her customers grow their followers into the tens of thousands in just one month, win integrative marketing awards, launch their businesses, and more. Yahoo! listed Blair as a top ten social media expert to watch in 2021. She has spoken on national stages and her expertise has been featured in media outlets including Forbes, CBC Radio, Entrepreneur and Thrive Global. Blair is also the #1 bestselling author of Pulsing Through My Veins: Raw and Real Stories from an Entrepreneur and co-host of the Dissecting Success podcast. When she’s not working on the board for her local chamber of commerce, you can find Blair growing the “The Resilience Project,” an online community where users share their stories of overcoming life’s most difficult moments.
Learn more about Blair: https://www.blairkaplan.ca/
Submit your story: https://www.iamresilient.info
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trigger warning, the Resilience Project provides an open space for people to share their personal experiences. Some content in this podcast may include topics that you may find difficult, the listeners discretion is advised.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Hello friends, welcome to radical resilience, a weekly show where I learned Kaplan Venables have inspirational conversations with people who have survived life's most challenging times. We all have the ability to be resilient and bounce forward from a difficult experience. And these conversations prove just that, get ready to dive into these life changing moments while strengthening your resilience muscle and getting raw and real.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Welcome back to another episode of radical resilience. It's me, Blair Kaplan Venables, and I'm here today to talk to my friend Megan. So I'm really excited about this chat, because we had a business chat, she like entered my world on the internet, just so you know, every person that comes into this podcast fills out a form. And sometimes people are filling out this form who I've never met before. And one of the questions is, how did you hear about us? And one of the answers is internet. So we are internet friends. And it's cool, because I'm in Canada, she's down in Hawaii. But Megan is amazing. So goal driven, women hire Megan Nolan to leverage the power of intentional pauses to feel amazing in their bodies and be holistically healthy and successful. She is the creator of the power pause method that combines the tools of yoga, movement, breathwork, and mental fitness to help them be more productive and profitable. And what I'm so excited about is that we're going to talk about her story, but also how the systems she created can help you. So this is kind of like a two fold episode where we're diving into her story, Megan story, but also, you're gonna walk away feeling inspired, and you know, things that you could implement, to start to feel better start to feel better and happier and healthier, and move the needle. So I am so excited. So Megan, hi.Megan Nolan:
Hi, I'm so excited to thank you so much for having me internet friend.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Oh, you're my friend. Oh, the internet, you know, for it's so interesting. Like, during the pandemic, like, most of my new connections, clients and friends are internet friends. And, you know, I was just on a media tour in June, and I met some of my internet friends in person. And it was so weird. Some people were just so tall. And you know, I got a lot of, you're shorter than I imagined. But anyways, I love my internet friends. And you know, it's cool like that you're in Hawaii, because, like, obviously, it's Hawaii. So that's extra rad. But I want to talk about your story. So, you know, we were talking about the the end goal, like what you're doing now, but walk us through, like, where did it start? What was life? Like? What happened?Megan Nolan:
Yes, for sure. Thank you. So I think that many of your listeners are going to be able to relate to this when I found myself in this literal like crumpled heap on the floor crying mess, like what am I doing? I don't know why none of this is working. I'm trying everything. And literally was so exhausted, physically exhausted, emotionally exhausted, and felt like I was literally just pouring everything I had into my life and my work and my business. And it was just kind of thinking right out the bottom. And it was in a moment of that complete exhaustion and desperation. And just like what that book is like, ah, feeling is that I was laying there. And you know, I asked my angels and you know, perhaps put in whatever word you like, they're angels guide universe, God, whatever. I asked for support. And then I kind of just left it because I was like, I don't know what to do with myself. This is insane. And I was watching this leaf that was attached to maybe a spiderweb. Right. As you mentioned, I live in Hawaii. So there's tropical, everything's everywhere. And it literally was just whipping around in a circle. And like, that's what I feel like, I feel so spun right now that I just don't know what to do to go forward. And I kept hearing, this is not your path. You can't go on like this. There's got to be a better way. And I was like, Yeah, clearly because this is not working. I literally had nothing left. And I was so just burnt out worn out. And I'm laying there one morning in the middle of just completely exhausted. And I realized that what I had been doing of just pouring myself out. I was so incredibly depleted. And I had lost my zest for whatever I was doing, you know, and so for me that was where it kind of all started from and I don't know if you can relate to that, but I'm sure some of your I guess definitely can, too.Blair Kaplan Venables:
So, wow, thank you for sharing. So you you were in a crumpled mess on the ground. But what was life? Like? What were you doing for work? What was going on in your personal life? Like, what were those things that that led you to that gravity taking over?Megan Nolan:
Yes, yeah, I'll give you some more backstory on that is that I was growing my business simultaneously working for somebody else now and being somebody who loves to say yes, and to please and you know, make things copacetic. And easy. I was just my boundaries just went not Andres. Yeah, boundaries were non existent. And so literally, in the middle of the night, waking up frantically, you know, in that moment of your brain, just kind of like running through every mistake you've ever made in your life, or all the things you forgot to do yesterday, and was not getting any rest getting any sleep. And I was dealing with this internal struggle of being a yoga teacher and personal trainer, and being so exhausted that I literally could do nothing. And I would lay on the yoga mat, and I'm like, well, some yoga, teacher Yoga, you don't even do any yoga, you know, and that shitty committee is I call them running the show, running the mic inside my head and just having its way and recognizing like, Okay, this is not how I want to show up, it's certainly not how I want to feel, and have that sort of line in the sand moment of like, okay, I want I really want to get up from this, I really want to practice what I preach, I really want to recognize how resistant or excuse me how resilient I am and how resistant I was being to my own knowledge and growth and potentiality because I was so stuck in the story of my head, and also so freaking exhausted, that I started to take a different look at the way I was living my life. Because I know, you know many of your listeners, for me, at least I was like, hashtag doing all the things. I was reading the books, I was doing the journaling, and I got all the pump me up post it notes on my mirror, you know, and I'm like trying all of it. But I'm realizing that like without that inner decision to recognize how amazing and resilient you already are. Yeah, then all of it just kind of washes over your head.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Wow. Yes. Oh, my gosh, thank you for sharing. And I think you just actually like, what's really important is I want to highlight that you are a yoga instructor, you are teaching yoga, you are in the health space, and you had the tools, and you still went through that. And that this just shows that anyone could go through it, right? Like Doctors need doctors. And I also want to point out something like that I've noticed. So I love yoga, I started my yoga journey in 2005. And what I love about yoga is that when I'm on the mat, it's just me in the mat, my phone is down for that 60 minutes, 90 minutes, five minutes, 10 minutes, whatever. And it's me in the mat. And sometimes the challenge is just getting to the mat. And sometimes the challenge is moving while I'm on the mat. And I think you know, it's interesting, because I can relate to the like, you know, not the proverbial lying in the mat, like what kind of yoga teacher I am like when it comes to social media. Because I in the same way, I've hit burnout before where like, I don't want to post on social media, I don't care. I was like, I don't care about social media. And that was my job. So I understand. But what I what I love about that reference of just like lying on your mat, it was probably in those moments when you knew you had to make a change. And so the yoga mat served a really big purpose for you.Megan Nolan:
Absolutely. And that's the beautiful thing about yoga is that it meets you where you're at. And you made such a beautiful point of sometimes the hardest thing is just to get there. And in those times when I was just getting there, if you will, and laying there and crying because that's all I can muster. Yoga doesn't judge you yoga is like just be here and let it be what it is. And that's the awareness of the practice, right? Because we see these things on social media, you know, am I supposed to be twisting into like, a pretzel? Yeah, I mean, that's an option. But really, the essence of the practice is coming back home to ourself and the beautiful being that you already are and nurturing that relationship and cultivating that. And we get to practice these ever essential and vital characteristics that, at least for me, I know are very easy to practice on other people like being patient and compassionate. You know, whereas yoga was like, Oh, it's okay. Just come over here and lay down. That's what yeah, you know, and it's my own mind. That was the one that was like, cracking the whip and saying all the things, but I love I love that that's something that you've recognized too, because it's key.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Yeah, like I I didn't like yoga, but I worked for Lululemon. And it was this is like 2005 And one day I had this moment where I realized that Every one I worked with who did yoga frequently had this glow about them. And I was like, I want that glow. I'm gonna see if I can like yoga and if it actually will change me. And so I did a 30 day yoga challenge and my life changed forever. Yeah. So I want to talk a bit more about your story. So you had this moment where you knew things had to change? What did you do?Megan Nolan:
Great question. I went to yoga.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Yoga does fix it all. Yeah.Megan Nolan:
Yeah, it fixes a lot. Yeah, one of my favorite sayings that my friend and I came up with the one that I was actually working for at that time was yoga saves the day again. And so I really didn't have much in me. And so I thought, Well, why don't I start to explore other parts of the practice? Because, yes, the physical asana practice the breath, work, meditation. That's like, such a beautiful, life changing component. But there's so much more. It's literally an ancient science. And there's such a depth to it. And so my teacher suggested that I start to learn more about the stories behind poses. Oh, oh, tell me more. I love stories. And so I got a book called the myths of the asanas. And I started to explore that. And one of the stories that you may not have heard yet, but you've probably I'm willing to bet if you've been on a yoga mat, at least once or twice, have done at least one of the warrior poses. Yes, yes. I mean, like I'm saying yes, on behalf of my listeners.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Yeah. I love it. I love warrior to give me a word or two.Megan Nolan:
It's such an awesome post, right? There's such a power to it. And there can also be a softness and a subtlety to it. And I love that. Yeah. So yes, answer yes, for everybody. Because pretty much anybody that has been anywhere near your yoga mat, has done one of those. Yeah, and it's a staple, because they're so powerful. But what a lot of people didn't realize, and I didn't know up until that point is that there's actually an ancient story behind the poses, that tells us of the journey of the warrior, which is a metaphor for the journey that we're on when we practice yoga, but also ultimately, the metaphor that we're all on, especially for those of us in entrepreneurship, or business ownership is the charging after our mission, making our way around obstacles. And so for example, where your one has a very different shape than warrior two, or three, and that's the chapter of where he's at in his journey. And warrior one, we're carving our way, and he's on his way towards his mission, or your to, as you experience yourself and your listeners to is that powerful presence. And that's when he arrives on the scene, he's about to take action on what he's about to do. And there's a quality of balance that comes to all of it, because we want to make sure that we are both in the action and activation and strength, which is so important. And I think it's such an empowering part of the practice. But if we're all go, go, go, go, go, go go, then we can burn ourselves out, right. So it's a beautiful metaphor, because we want to balance that with the softer, more feminine ease fulness, the being aspect of the practice. And so we want to bring that in as well. And so I started to learn more about this story. And I thought, wow, this is so incredible, I really hadn't understood the depths and why the architecture was different. And then it started to kind of speak to me in a sense, and started to show me that within each of those warriors, there's different characteristics that build up the architecture of the pose, that it's actually activating within us when we practice. And it's helping us to cultivate so much more depth of awareness and attention within ourselves. And so I started to really see the practice totally differently. Because I wasn't necessarily physically active, but I was really exploring that intricacy and the subtleties of it of the mental aspect of it. And so I realized, wow, this is so incredibly powerful, so incredibly transformative, and what it allowed me to become by going through that journey, I thought, I need to share this with the world because this is really important. Yeah, that was my tool set. And so that's really like how I was able to get out of that crumbled heap and back into feeling myself and cultivating that resilience and really standing back up in my strength. I Oh, I love that.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Oh, my gosh, wait, what was that book called, again?Megan Nolan:
The Myths of the asanas.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Oh, I want to read it. That's super cool. So now you have this like epiphany, you have this transformative experience of, you know, reading this book and learning more about these poses, like, you know, the warrior poses and then what did you do? Like, how did you how did you transition into what you were doing now? And what are you doing now? How are you taking these lessons and helping others?Megan Nolan:
Yes, and the beauty of it is, is that it really was a step by step sort of journey because I was so tired and I was like, Okay, well, I can't go like full force back to what I was doing before. So I let it be nurtured. hang in the sense that they met me where I was at, right. And if I could just do a little bit, then I would continue to explore it a little bit more. But I believe and this is what I help my clients with is that something we all struggle with is consistency with things. But that's really where the magic is. And so even if it's only just a few minutes in the morning, it really set the tone for everything that I was doing. And going back to what I mentioned earlier, is that I felt like I was doing all the things to try to like move myself forward, and my business and my life, and you know, manifestation, all of those beautiful tools. But I was so overwhelmed with all of the things that I wanted to do that I realized that I wanted to weave it all together into a tool set that I could make the foundation of my day by starting my day that way every day. And so that became my go to of connecting to my vision, experiencing it now and using the practice to fully embody it. And so then I realized, okay, this is so powerful, this is so important. And I have been sharing it that way for years. But then, of course, over the course of the last few years, it became even more important for people to have the tools to feel grounded and to know that they are resilient and be courageous in challenging moments and all of the ups and downs that we've gone through over the last few years. And so was such a beautiful way to share these tools by connecting other people in my community as well as around the world. And so making them approachable, because sometimes, you know, we think we want to do yoga, or we see the glow that we see and other people we try we look at it, we're like hair, I can't bend like that, oh my goodness, no. And so make it approachable and doable. And also help people understand the why behind what you're doing. Like why the pose is shaped like that, and what is activating within you. So it gives them a depth of understanding of the practice, but ultimately of themselves. I love that.Blair Kaplan Venables:
So good. I love when I'm in a yoga class and the teacher is explaining on a deeper level, not just about transitioning and where your body should be positioned. But the deeper meaning I really like learning while I do the poses, because you're right, it does help me have a deeper understanding, but it's also lessons I can take with me throughout my day and I'm uh I'm on peloton. So I got a peloton, and I've been doing their yoga and strength training classes. And there's some really great instructors there. So I'm excited to maybe one day even like, take a class from you. I want to know, what's your morning routine? Like, tell me what's life like when you wake up? What do you do? Love it?Megan Nolan:
Yes. So my first morning part of the morning is when I wake up, because for a long time, I would wake up to anxiety. And I would wake up into that sort of feeling. And so I developed this practice years ago, and I've continued it is that before I get out of bed, I placed my one hand on my belly and one hand on my heart and I breathe and just ground myself into the day. And typically saying I am safe, I am loved, I am safe, I am loved. And that was a habit with the anxiety that was very soothing for me. But it's just such a beautiful nurturing way to start the day. And then when I go to put my feet on the floor before I stand up, so that first pivotable pivotal feet on the floor, ready to go. There's a habit that was developed by BJ Fogg. And he he's he's all about the technique of habits and habit stacking. And the first habit, the most powerful habit is to say, today is going to be a good day. Whether you believe it or not, you know, we can program our mind, we know that we're powerful like that. So that's what I say to myself first. And then as I'm drinking my warm lemon water, because my body likes that even though I live in a really warm climate, it doesn't like cold water very much. I drink my warm lemon water. And I go into my gratitude and my big visioning and connecting to the elevated emotional state of that and beginning to experience it now and really diving into that exploration. And typically, I'd like to do some statements and affirmations, you can't see me but you might hear that I'm tapping. So I like to do tapping because it's again, very soothing for our nervous system, and then decide on what my intention is for the day that will help me to move towards my vision for what I'm creating in my life and myself. So I like to focus on one essential quality, one essential way of being for my practice. And so in yoga, we call that a sankalpa. So that is a Sanskrit word that means a dedication to the truth. So the truth is, we have what we need inside of us, but we get to cultivate it and begin to really activate it. So I set a sankalpa for my practice, and then I use the practice. So I say that I want to feel grounded and open hearted, then I use the physical practice and whether that's, again, if I'm tuckered out, it's just relaxing and breathing or what have you, or more energizing dancing. And so because I have been personal trainer and yoga teacher for about 17 years, and I realized that they each have pieces of them that they're missing, but when we piece them together, they're very powerful. So integrating cardio and strength and dance and then the softness and the stability and the stretching of yoga. So I weave that together in my morning routine and I mean I love to have a luxury or luxurious practice. Spend some time since like 10 minutes. Typically, I like at least a minimum 45 minutes. More is amazing. But that's my non negotiable amount of time of movement time with myself. And then I love to finish it up by going out and standing on the grass and I ground myself and then I connect up through my channel. And I really settle in for my decision and attention for the day. Take that a little further. And then yeah, I am on my wayBlair Kaplan Venables:
what a beaut? How long is that? First of all beautiful, I got all the things that want to come out of my mouth. One beautiful, I love that that's such a beautiful morning, like routine and practice. How long does it all take you?Megan Nolan:
Typically, all in? I mean, if I'm keeping it snug, because I have morning things and it a minimum of an hour. That's that's doable.Blair Kaplan Venables:
I agree. If you only had 20 minutes, what would it look like?Megan Nolan:
Yes, that's a great question. I definitely get that a lot is like, but I don't have that amount of time in the morning.Blair Kaplan Venables:
I mean, you could anyone could you just gotta get up a little earlier. 100%. But like, if, if there's only 20 minutes?Megan Nolan:
Yes, great question. Always water, always water, we don't drink very much in the night. Unless you're like a nighttime drinker, while you're sleeping, we wake up, we're a little dehydrated. So it's always good to have a big drink of water, lemon is helpful. So that's, you know, a little side bonus. So have some water while you're moving. And if you don't have time to sit down and do the journaling, then you can ground yourself while you're saying your affirmations while you are going into your big vision connecting to the frequency the energy of it. So you could do that in just a couple minutes and then get your body moving. Because we all spend, we're both doing it now. And your listeners might be doing it too. We all spend way too much time sitting down.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Way too much way too much. Way too much. I even bought a standing desk, why don't why don't I use it?Megan Nolan:
I know right? It's getting into the habit. Yeah, because the thing is sitting turns to slouching real real quick. So really important is to energize the core muscles that hold you in strong posture, which is powerful posture. And so doing things to wake up your your booty, your upper back, all that. So you can move your body in a way that's really nurturing and energizing in like five or 10 minutes, you know, if you want to so say we're two minutes in with our meditation and our connection. And then if you give yourself you know, 15 minutes of movement and stretching, or maybe stretch that to maybe 18. And then at the end that grounding so you can really you know, you can like an accordion, you can stretch it or condense. Yeah. Even if you had five minutes, like that's so amazing, because it's really is such an intentional game changer and tone setter for the day. I love that. And I am someone who agrees like with all the things I've been through recently.Blair Kaplan Venables:
I noticed such a difference in my day, if I like pull an Oracle Card and meditate and journal and set intentions for the day versus when I don't like there's a huge difference in my day. And I think you know, I was lucky to work with various, you know, healers to help me begin on this path. And use like, I know you don't call yourself a healer of sorts. But what you're what you're teaching and what you do, it's it's healing. How do people work with you? Like what how do people get into your world besides clicking on the links in the show notes? Like how do people work with you what's coming up, that people can experience what you do?Megan Nolan:
Well, if you want to learn more about that warrior story and experience when I do, I actually have something coming up on August 24. And that is the week the Warrior Within workshop. And we are going to dive deep into the core elements of learning how to take your mind from going a mile a minute to a place of common focus, without Netflix and a glass bottle of wine. So using these tools very intentionally, to really fully align with that purposeful powerhouse that you truly are using the practice in leveraging your time by having a session that actually strengthens your mind and your body simultaneously. Because who doesn't love things that do many things all at once, really learning how to tap into the subtleties of the postures and also different exercises so you can fully activate their amazing benefits and yes, burn as well. So you're really getting the most out of them for holistic health and learning to really come back to that place of center. Rather than feeling like everything is spiraling. There's so many things. There's so many like everything pulling on your time learning how to truly come back to that place so that you are moving into your day and into your life intentionally that way and really remembering that you are the powerhouse and so you get to decide how you're going to show up. So that's what we're going to be diving into on August 24.Blair Kaplan Venables:
Oh my gosh, I love that. I think that It's so it's such a gift. It's such a gift. I mean, if you out there in the world of podcast listeners have the capacity, time, energy to learn for free, you want to feel better. I mean, who doesn't want to feel better? Check this out, like, you know, experience, experience what Megan has to offer because she is a true shining light in this world, what she's teaching their resilience tools there ways to strengthen your resilience, muscle, you know, back to my Lululemon days. Lululemon started because Chip Wilson, the founder of Lululemon, like he was a snowboarder, he injured himself, and he was doing yoga to help rehabilitate himself, and he realized there wasn't anything practical for women to wear. But the whole point of that is like he was using yoga to heal. He was using yoga to heel, five minutes, an hour and a half, whatever it might be, you know, find time to be on the mat, be on the grass, you know, lie on your mat and breathe. But if you know you're gonna take anything away from this conversation, if you want actually begging anyone to take one thing away from this conversation, what is that one? Thing?Megan Nolan:
Hmm, that's a great question. It really is remembering that we're far more powerful than we give ourselves credit for. And when you make that decision to give yourself that window of time, whatever that window happens to be, be it two minutes, 20 hours, what have you. It really is such a powerful tool set for the way that you show up in your life. And we'll make everything feel lighter and more fun and playful. And because it comes back to you and how you feel. And that's really, in my opinion, one of the most important things to prioritize is how you feel so that you can show up as that vibrant, patient, resilient, amazing you and everything you do.Blair Kaplan Venables:
So beautiful, so beautiful. Thank you so much for diving in to this conversation about your story and healing and breathing and the warrior. I love that I'm going to always think of, you know, this episode, this conversation and everything I learned from you in the future when I'm in yoga, especially when we move into warrior two, because that's a very strong powerful pose. And I absolutely love it. So thank you so much for sharing your gifts and talent gifts such as gifts, and talents with our listeners. And thank you to everyone who tuned in to another episode of radical resilience. Remember, it is okay to not be okay. You always have your breath, wake up, drink some water. You are resilient, you can get through it and you have a community like the global Resilience Project. People like Megan people like me, we are here to help you get through it. So thank you.Megan Nolan:
Thank you so much for having me.