Co-founders of Empower World
Marie: Hello everyone. Hello listeners. Hello coaches and Hello leaders. Marie Quigley and Jeanine Bailey here for another episode of the Coaching and Leadership Podcast and we're really excited as always to be talking together today. And as we've been having our meetings and preparing for today's podcast we've been thinking about what will be most useful for people, as we're in this place in the world on April the 9th 2020. where so many of us are inside our homes. We're being bombarded with information about the COVID virus that's going around the world that we absolutely have no control over. And we thought we'd come together to have a conversation about ways we can support ourselves even more.
Jeanine: Yeah. Hi Marie and hi listeners and it is always a pleasure to connect with you Marie. Whether it be online or face to face. And of course now that we're a self-isolating. And I'm unable to meet you in Qatar. I'm currently in Australia but we've had so much connection. What we always do. But even more so, I guess, as a consequence of what's happening. And I have to say I'm really appreciating our meetings together and the focus that we have at the moment. I think we've got a strong focus and I believe we're both very hopeful about the future even though there is, again, so much up and down and challenge in the world right now. There's no doubt about it, it's not easy, it's turning our worlds upside down and the song that comes to mind with this virus, it's the song by R.E.M “It's The End of the World as We Know It”. And if you haven't heard of it the chorus goes something like... I'm not going to sing don't worry listeners. I won't hurt your ears! But “it's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine”. And so I quite like the sound of that song coming through because it helps me focus on, I guess, what are the things that I can control versus the things I can't control. And yes I like to be informed but I don't want to go down a spiral of things that I can't control. So it's finding that balance of where to focus, where to put our focus, so that we can step into the best version of ourselves and really put that oxygen mask on so that we can support others as well. And yeah, lead ourselves first and lead by example. And yes still be able to express vulnerability and fear and hope and everything else. So, as you said Marie, it really is the way that all the things that we focus on that's going to support us through this crisis.
Marie: Absolutely so what we're feeding ourselves, what we're nourishing our minds, hearts and souls with matters so much at this time. You know, there are people who have the news on 24 hours a day and are waiting for each update. And that just doesn't work for me, because I don't want to be constantly in touch with the repetition of what we're hearing. So it's not necessarily something new that we're hearing. We keep hearing the same story over and over again so I like to have a chunk of time where I'm informed find out what's going on and then remove myself from it. It doesn't mean I'm ignoring it in any way, shape or form. But it does mean that I limit the amount of time that I'm feeding myself that information because that information is important, it helps us stay safe. The knowledge is absolutely required. But I think, for me anyway, it’s a constant repetition that would take me out of a state that I want to be in which is why I want to I choose to be in a place of confidence, calmness and trust that right now everything is OK for me and my family right now. I know there are other things happening for others in the world but I cannot do anything about that. I wish I could. I mean we are helping in ways of offering support for people who are vulnerable at this time and both of us are doing things like that, Jeanine, but really we have no effect on those who aren't well right now. So we cannot do anything to solve that. But we can choose to be with ourselves and take care of ourselves.
Jeanine: Yeah absolutely. Again going back to that beautiful analogy of putting that oxygen mask on for yourself. And one of the things that I came across this week was the free meditation by Deepak Chopra in collaboration with Oprah Winfrey. I don't know if you've seen it Marie or listened to it.
Marie: Yeah. I have a practice of mindfulness that I'm doing anyway so I haven't signed up to that program but yes.
Jeanine: Yeah so. Which I have as well, a practice of meditation each day. And so I thought that I would swap it up a bit and listen to the Deepak Chopra meditation and it focuses on hope. It's a meditation that focuses on hope and there's a beautiful saying by Maya Angelou who (Have I pronounce her name correctly?) Who says that when we focus on hope, fear can't show up. That's not the exact words she used but it's something along those lines. When we focus on hope, fear cannot live there. So it's been a beautiful meditation of focusing on that hope and it's been a wonderful way to start my day the last four days to listen into this beautiful meditation. And even before I was listening to this meditation, I still… I don't know where it comes from, but I still have this deep hope that things will be okay for the world. I'm trusting and hoping, again, it'll be a better world. We'll learn so much from this and potentially be kinder, more compassionate, more mindful, more caring, change the ways that we live, potentially slow down, be mindful of how we use resources and look after our wildlife and nature. And I know it’s not going to be perfect and I know it's there’ll still be challenges, that’s what life is all about. But I'm trusting that there will be great outcomes from this. Who knows, I might be off track. But it keeps me going. It keeps me focused, it keeps my mind open to possibilities and my world is definitely opening up. It's definitely opening up. As you said Marie we've been incredibly busy with work but also volunteer work, which actually really feeds my soul and feeds my purpose. So as you say, going back to what you were saying earlier Marie, it's about what we choose to focus and what we choose to do that will support us through times like this.
Marie: And I know that there are people who think “but I can't do anything about what I'm feeling, I can't change I'm feeling, this is just how I'm feeling”. And thing is, we can change how we are feeling because our thoughts and how we are being impacts how we are feeling. So if like you Jeanine, you're choosing to focus on hope. If you can choose to focus on hope, then you're feeding your mind thoughts that are very different than if you were choosing to focus on fear. So it's a different sensation happening in our bodies when we're focusing on different things. And so, listeners, check in with yourself. What are you choosing to put in your head in your mind that impacts the emotions you feeling, those sensations that come up when you're thinking about the world? The “What if?” Or “gosh this is terrible”. Yes, it is and there are also a lot of great things going on. So check in with what you're putting inside your beautiful mind that is impacting your body that is causing the reaction to what you're exposing yourself to.
Jeanine: Yeah that's a great thing to ask yourself, Marie. And if you notice that you are focusing on the ‘go wrongs’ and all of the not such great news and the ‘what ifs’ and the ‘what ifs’ that are creating that fear and not such great experiences, then maybe it's turning that question around and asking a question of yourself, you know, “what is it that I can focus on that I can control that will support me? What is this experience here to teach me? If this was supposed to happen to me, what am I here to learn? What is it that I can do again differently that will support me to navigate my way through this?”. So taking that 100 percent responsibility for the stories that you are making up about the situation and 100 percent responsibility for how you're feeling, because as you said Marie, we have a choice as to how we view things. So just question yourself in a way that will support you to see something that's more, I guess, uplifting or empowering or supportive… whatever works for you. And take that time out to listen to what your inner wisdom wants you to know, because these challenging times do come into our lives and they do test us and we can all come through this if we choose to again feed our self with questions and a focus that enables us to see a more empowering, enlightening perspective.
Marie: I think it's just also worth mentioning that we are so much more resourceful when we are in a state of mind that we're looking at possibilities that feel good, rather than possibilities that feel fearful. So we can take care of ourselves so much better when we have our head up high, when we're choosing, for example, hope. When we're choosing to focus on what we're grateful for right now. That allows us to be more resourceful and when we are needed to help others, we can act so much better because we've taken care of ourselves.
Jeanine: Beautifully said Marie. This has been a wonderful conversation. It's certainly lifting me up, I love these conversations. And listeners, we trust that you've taken something valuable from this podcast. And again if there is anything that you would like us to focus on, if you have any feedback for us, we'd be delighted to hear. And you can email [email protected] or make a comment on our social media. But thank you for listening. Before I say goodbye is there anything else Marie that you'd like to share.
Marie: No I'm good to go.
Jeanine: Right. Well listeners enjoy your rest of the day wherever you are and continue to look at the light. Look at the new perspectives that will support you and we hope to hear from you soon.