When you don’t feel okay, take time to reflect and check yourself. What’s making you feel that way? You have to sit still, stay quiet, and listen to your truth. Join Corin Grillo and Kate Eckman as they share valuable insights about exploring life’s endless possibilities to their full extent. Kate emphasizes the importance of a full spirit workout, which is also the title of her book. She is a Certified Executive Leadership Coach with expertise in communications, performance, and mindfulness to equip leaders with the tools, methodology, and energetic boost they need to excel. She shares personal experiences on how she dealt with loneliness and the feeling of being alone. Our minds are very powerful. So, with the right workout, we could positively train them to strengthen our spiritual core and fulfill our lives. She elaborates on the strategies she executes to help people live their truths in this episode.
Listen to the podcast here:
The Full Spirit Workout: Reclaiming Your Best Self With Kate Eckman
I never met this guest before. Within two minutes, we’re both in tears crying, feeling like this sisterhood. I’m excited to introduce you to my new BFF, Kate Eckman, her book The Full Spirit Workout: A Ten-Step System to Shed Your Self-Doubt, Strengthen Your Spiritual Core, and Create a Fun and Fulfilling Life is in alignment with what I think we all need. In this episode, we talked a lot about some real shit. I had to remember why we were here. We talked a lot about the book and things that will help you along in stepping and staying in your power, becoming unwavering in what you know and what your vision is. We talked a lot about some of the haters and shit that people get when you start stepping into your power. Some of the shadow side of what happens. What I love about her is that she’s real and authentic. I feel like she is a perfect example of what we’re all being called to do. Just get more authentic, real and start becoming the change that you want to see on the planet and we all need it.
Let me tell you a little bit about her. She’s a broadcast journalist, TV personality and author of The Full Spirit Workout. She brings her expertise in communications, performance and mindfulness to her practice as a success coach for business leaders and professional athletes. She earned a BA in Communications from Penn State University, where she was an academic all-American swimmer and received her Master’s degree in Broadcast Journalism. She’s been all over the place, high performance, all of this stuff and now she’s coming to a place where it’s all about achievement but from the inside out. We talked a lot about her journey and it’s quite beautiful. I hope you stick around, get your pen and paper out. Write down those things that jumped out at you because those could be the things that are messages from spirit to you.
This is our first time meeting. We are fangirling because we like each other. We’re barely getting to know each other. Welcome, Kate. Sometimes I like to pull a little card. I’m going to pull a card and let’s see what comes out for us.
I’m here for it. Thank you so much for having me. I’m already giddy and my face hurts from smiling.
I use this simple little deck with different birds and a message. What I want you to do is know what the message is, see how it moves you, feel into how it applies to your life right now and what’s going on. We can dig into that a little bit. Guys, I’ll tell you exactly what we were talking about. When you start stepping up into your power and you start becoming more vocal and visual, it starts feeling a little lonely. You need to find other people. I equated it with this thing that this one woman told me when I was starting to have some issues with people here locally. When I started getting more public, there are some women that took issue with it. What the lady told me, “There’s essentially so long that you can play in the same cage with the hens if you’re an eagle. When you’re an eagle, you have to start flying and it’s a painful process but then your job is to find other eagles.” I told Kate that story about, “If you’re going to be an eagle, be an eagle but we have to find each other because it can be lonely when you start waving your flag.”
What came to me is what Martin Luther King Jr. said, “On your journey, mighty companions will join you.” I think that’s true but you got to make space for the mighty companions. That means we need to allow others to fall away. It can be sad, painful and uncomfortable. We may experience guilt around this process but not everyone is meant to continue on the journey forever and releasing people with love, respect, dignity, grace and make room for the mighty companions because I’m no longer willing to have relationships where I don’t feel seen, heard, acknowledged and respected. Sometimes that’s difficult because these people are family members or people we’ve known for twenty years. It can be isolating and lonely. You use the word lonely. Being an author, in general, is a very lonely experience that not many people talk about.
I know other authors certainly but everyone’s busy doing their thing. I feel like we live in a culture where you reach a certain level and you got to pretend you have it all together even if you don’t. As I tell my clients, “This is a no pretend zone and it’s important that people are free to be authentically who they are and who they need to be, rather than pretending.” It’s exhausting to pretend. I was even saying before, I’m probably going to cry because even just you seeing me clearly within twenty seconds of us meeting, it does make me want to weep when you spend your whole life around people who aren’t willing or able to see you.
Always choose peace when faced with challenges.
No matter where we’re at in life, we need people to see us. You have had a lot of loss and people who’ve left you. Friends and family who don’t understand you. Is that happening to you? I do talk about that a lot to people that I work with as well.
I’ve had a loss and the whole why I wrote a book was for my two dear friends who I lost to suicide, both of them in one year. One was my ex-boyfriend. One was a best friend with who I was romantically involved with on and off for ten years and a love of my life. I’ve experienced that loss and I’ve lost other friends and family members. Most of us have all lost loved ones. The loss too of people who aren’t willing or able to see you, you experience jealousy, you feel that you are not supported or celebrated when things are going well. They’re not there for you when things aren’t going as well. That notion of when you tell someone something big, something that they know you’ve wanted for years and it’s happened. You get anything less than, “Congratulations.” It’s unsettling, bizarre and confusing. That should be the only response and you don’t get that.
I’ve struggled with this in the past couple of years. Now, I have a much better handle on it because I’m meeting many people like yourself who genuinely see, love and support me in the work that I’m doing. Having other people read and give me such feedback about the book. As I say, “You’re not everyone’s cup of tea but you’re somebody shot a tequila.” I have experienced a lot of loss and a lot of people have. I know what it’s like to be in that dark place. My wish and goal are that nobody feels that way in my presence. Whether you’re my best friend, my partner, a colleague, a client or the checkout person at the grocery store, I want you to feel seen and uplifted in my presence.
The people that we lose when we’re in their mind, gaining more power, wealth and notoriety. This is why I feel like a book like yours is important, The Full Spirit Workout: A Ten-Step System to Shed Your Self Doubt, Strengthen Your Spiritual Core, and Create a Fun and Fulfilling Life. That all sounds good and dandy. That’s so much of what’s in our hearts. There are many of us getting woken up, wanting to fulfill a beautiful life and do a beautiful life but what they don’t write about in the books is that, “When you start doing that?” Sometimes the closest people in your life have reactions. I have a lot of people that I work with, where when they’re finally starting to get happy, their partner wants to keep on down. That’s why I like The Full Spirit Workout. This work that you do is important because if you’re not doing that inner work. You will stay in that little box with the hens.
I have a lot of love and respect for the hens. They certainly have their mission, purpose and things to do but not all of us are hens. I wish the hens would sometimes have a little more respect for the eagle, be inspired by the eagles, wanting to fly a bit more to explore and know that life exists outside of the cage. The hens may think they’re so happy in the cage, “I’m happy. I don’t need to do all these things.” I say to them, “Have you even allowed yourself to experience life outside of the cage and what it could be? Take that adventure, not because it’s easy or comfortable?” That’s when life gets juicy. We become the people who are able to achieve our cherished goals and put ourselves out there. Not just for ourselves, this is not about, “I want to manifest all the things.” I like nice things as much as the next person, but caring about others and the upliftment of the world. Not just that you win but that causes organizations that are dear to you are winning. Your family and the people around you are winning. It’s interesting to talk about this subject because I do get triggered by it at times because I simply don’t understand. I’m one of those people, “I want to do well but I want everyone to do well,” because there’s enough to go around. I also care about people who aren’t in a privileged position, who have not had the opportunities that I have had.
I care about those people. That’s why even what’s going on in our society, it’s like, “Why do you care? You’re not affected by those people.” I said, “If people around me are in the United States of America and my country are suffering, I am suffering.” There’s a collective but people think you’re crazy that you care about people you don’t know. That’s another reason I feel like an alien and lonely a lot because people are like, “Why do you care?” I’m an Aquarius. I’m the humanitarian of the Zodiac. I care and I’m not going to stop caring.
We share that in common and it’s a problem because we’re sensitive. When I’m talking about hens, it’s a very specific group of people who do nothing but cluck about other people. It’s the cluckers. We all have our mission, thing and beautiful part. It’s the dang people who are clucking about you every time you reach a new height. Those are the hens. Get out of that cage. Those little things exist, sadly and it’s hurtful to me too. I’m going to read this card. It says, “You are learning all aspects of spiritual connection and you’re reaching new heights.” My sense is, even with some of this loneliness that you’re feeling is probably part of this next level that you’re heading into in a way. Do you have a sense of what that next level is?
My aunt and I scheduled a time to get together because I’ve been busy. She said, “You wanted success and here it is.” For me, it’s being at a certain level of success, you’re able to impact even more people and to influence in a positive way. People hate the media and I say, “You are the media. What message do you want to spread?” You have a much bigger platform if you’re NBC News versus some local show on YouTube that nobody’s ever heard of. That’s the purpose of having a greater platform for me. I think too because I’ve done the work. I do The Full Spirit Workout. There’s this notion that, “If you wrote the book, you don’t need to do the work.” That’s like saying to Tom Brady, “You’ve won a Super Bowl, you never have to show up for practice again.” That man trains harder than anyone, not because he’s the worst but because he’s the best. It’s, “What is your Super Bowl and what life do you want to have?”
For me, it’s not even about the shiny objects. I like the shiny objects but I don’t want to feel like crap. When people say I don’t have time to meditate and do The Full Spirit Workout exercises. I say, “I don’t have time to be miserable and raise my voice to the people I love because I’m overwhelmed, exhausted, haven’t slept and aren’t caring for myself.” It is being a bit more conscious, deliberate intentional with our choices and actions. The loneliness comes in that eagle thing because you are up-leveling because you’ve put in the work and it’s a good thing. That may scare some people. Others are mad that it’s not happening for them or on that timeline. I’ve had a friend who is going through a hard time and I’ve been very supportive but I’m no longer willing to tone or dumb it down so somebody else can feel more comfortable with themselves. That’s their job. I’ve worked too hard and I’ve been in the place where I was struggling. I’m like, “I’m not willing to go backwards so that somebody can feel better about themselves.”
There are many in my communities and the readers here that are up-leveling. They’re doing it and taking a bite out of crime because this time that we happened to be born is very auspicious. There are a lot of people making big bids for power to turn their dreams into visions. Not just into visions, but into reality. At that stage, you have to make a choice. Are you willing to shine even more and potentially risk being even a little bit more lonely or you can’t applause? I remember when my job switched over to doing angel work in my private practice. Things started getting awkward fast because my husband’s coming home saying, “My project manager did this,” and it was like all this cranky stuff. I’m like, “There was a miracle that happened.” There’s all of this amazing stuff and I realize how awkward it is when you have a lot of good news for most people.
For all of us, it comes with part of the territory that we have to build our resilience because people need your work. Each person listening has a special medicine that has to come out of one way or the other you can let it out. It’s about, “How much are you willing to show your medicine?” What I understand from you about this eagle card is that you’re coming to grips with the fact that this is your life. How are you going to show your medicine even more and are you willing to take that risk, essentially?
My greatest value is freedom. When I think of the eagle flying and being up above, all the nonsense, chaos, uncertainty and being able to look down and see, “This is how I can help. This is what I can do,” but dwelling in that power. That’s why sometimes my friend said to me too like, “You’re all about the tough love.” I said, “However, you want to label it. I’m no longer willing to coddle someone’s weaknesses or neuroses.” I’m not just paying lip service to it and saying, “You’re amazing.” I believe you’re amazing and powerful because I know where you come from. I know what force of love created you. Whether you believe in God, spirit, universe, nature, angels or whatever it is. I’m not going to be that person to poopoo on your poopoo party.
I’m going to say, “Let you be there for a minute. What are we going to do about it?” I’ll remind you of who you are and let’s go. As I like to say, “It’s not midnight yet but it’s 11:45.” We’ve spent our hours in our disempowering places, let’s go. I don’t care if I’m annoying to some in that regard. It’s like, “You’ve got a lot of energy.” “Yeah. I believe in this stuff and I’ve seen it work because I’ve been in a dark and disempowered place. I am not willing to go back there.” I have my moments certainly and I feel great now because I’m connecting with you and your beautiful audience. I was in a place of discomfort, feeling so lonely, looking up at God and the angels and saying, “How long do you want me to do this alone?”
I know I’m not alone because of you. I have incredible people in my life but I’m talking about my partner to do life with. I’m like, “I’ve put in all the work. What’s up?” I hear that he’s coming. This person shows himself to me, is smiling, has all this light around him and says, “I can’t wait to meet you,” and I think the same. There are moments as much as I love it and I’m glad I’m able to do it, I’m like, “I’m tired of going out to eat alone when I’m at some other place,” because I travel a lot. I moved out of New York temporarily during COVID.
Identify your truth, so you could focus on being the best you could be.
It’s just doing a lot on my own, which I’m glad I’m able to do. Other people need to know this because maybe you’re married and you feel alone and it’s time for the next chapter or whatever it is. That’s why for me, it was never about settling with being in a relationship. I want to be intentional because your romantic partner will bring up all of your stuff. You’ve got to come prepared and ready to show up in a meaningful way. There are definitely some lonely moments or how many people had a traditionally published book and go through all the things that we go through? You get it. You want to talk about these things and a lot of people don’t understand. Just like, “I’m not going to be able to speak to a lot of things that other people have done.”
I don’t talk about my work so much with my family because they can’t say anything back. They’re super supportive but what do they say? I love meeting people like you and talking to other people who are doing trippier things so we could be like, “What the fuck,” together.
Be like, “You get it.” You understand what I’m talking about. The same with loneliness, especially during 2020, everyone’s experienced loneliness, whether you’re in a house full of people or sitting alone. This isn’t even a single, married or in relationship type of deal. Everybody experiences these moments. It’s good that we talk about it instead of pretending these things don’t exist, glossing over it, bypassing it, which you’re familiar with as a therapist. Life is not meant to just feel happy feelings. That means you’re not putting yourself out there or experiencing the full spectrum of life. I think of a psychologist, Susan David, who had clients who said, “I don’t want to feel sad. I don’t want to feel angry,” and she said, “Those are dead people’s goals.” I think when I’m in that place of like, “This is uncomfortable. I don’t want to feel this.” I’m like, “This is part of being human. There’s no escaping it.”
I’ve tried for a long time and it doesn’t work.
I embrace it. I let the emotion move through me, out and ask what it’s here to teach me, what can I learn and set the intention. I said, “Dear God, I am not feeling great at the moment because of X, Y, and Z but I am willing to choose peace instead of this.” I set that intention for myself when I went to bed, slept like a champ, woke up in a much different space and it’s because I am willing to sit there and discomfort by myself. I think, “You feel this way because of this.” This is okay. I love the word and. It’s such a boring word in the literary world, but I’m great and I’m experiencing some discomfort and feeling lonely. My career is going great and I wish these things were also popping off. I love being single and I’m ready to meet my person.
That’s the paradox of being who we are. There’s always this growth edge where we’re moving to grow. I hit my peak. Mine came crashing on me years ago. I was doing this live stream. One of my groups has 20,000 people in it. I was going to talk about something specific but I decided to tell them instead. I went to the doctor, I weighed myself for the first time. It was such a stupid idea but it wasn’t even my idea.
I always say, “No, thank you,” and they look at me like, “How dare you?” I say, “No, thank you.” They said, “Because of medicine.” I’m like, “I don’t take pills,” and they’re just like, “Who is this chick?” I’m like, “I’m not getting weighed and I’m not being put on pills.”
I’m weighing myself when I was pregnant. I did boycott that because they were trying to be like, “You’re getting into a danger zone.” I’m like, “It’s not that dangerous and essentially, fuck you.” I was at the doctor and there are certain types of professions when you don’t think about it, you automatically caned over your power. It was like a split second, “Here, take all my power,” and I’m going to weigh in. Do you know what that scale did? I realized I had gained so much weight that I weighed the same amount that I weighed when I was nine months pregnant. That was a come to Jesus moment for myself but there’s the paradox. My love life is popping off. The irony about that is my boyfriend is way younger than me and he’s cute. Here I am, nine months pregnant. I’m old and fat. All of this crazy shit going on but then here’s this thing. Whatever it might or that thing might shift around a little bit but there’s always the thing that isn’t there.
I’m smiling and laughing because I can relate. I said to a client and we were talking about it that I had a little talk with myself. I’m like, “You had fun this past year eaten all the things.” There was a moment this winter that my food, my pizza is the one pleasure left. I’m going for it. I’m like, “We’ve done that. That was fun. No, let’s just clean things up a little bit.” Feel a little bit healthier, fit, that comes and goes. We all have a lot of grace for ourselves. It’s like New York City, anything goes. We’re going for it. What’s your pleasure?
I know exactly what you mean. I do work with many people, even I’m thinking of a relative who will say things like, “At least, work is going well.” It breaks my heart because I appreciate that work’s going well but I think it’s life. The quicker we can embrace it and admit to ourselves when something sucks or isn’t working, the quicker we return home to ourselves where joy, appreciation and gratitude occur naturally rather than trying to force it, pretend, try to manipulate or control. It’s just like, “This is where I am,” and I will do that to the person. I don’t even know where my scale is. I moved and it never came out. It’s packed away somewhere. I can tell. I used to do it the like, “The dry cleaner shrunk this.” I’m like, “You don’t take your jeans to the dry cleaner. You’ve gained some weight and that’s where we are.” It’s okay and maybe we’ll have one piece of pizza instead of four.
My problem was that I wear elastic waist pants. I didn’t know what the hell was happening. No one told me until I got to the doctor. Things are moving a little better in a better direction but it’s the paradox.
The good news about that too is that we can do whatever we decide is important enough. For me, when I was eating more than usual, I was editing my manuscript. It was so much work. I had moved. There were a million things going on. I’m like, “I need brain fuel.” For me, my priority is being able to edit for twelve hours a day with everything else going on. I’m going to eat to keep it moving and letting ourselves off the hook a bit more. When my space frees up a little bit, my priorities can shift a bit. I can go to the gym more and clean up the eating a bit because I’m not under so much stress and pressure. The answer is always having a bit more grace for ourselves. Releasing the shame and the blame. The hens can do the shame and blame. We’re not hens. The hens can cluck around with the shame. I’m done with it.
Don’t be your own clucker. We have been dancing around your book a little bit. What’s your real motivation for writing the book? It’s two questions in one. The little girl inside of you, what are her thoughts on who you’ve become and would she be shocked that you’re writing a book like this or would she be like, “No. This is the book I would write?” You can answer however you want.
I was a competitive swimmer for seventeen years. I knew how hard I had to train my physical muscles to compete at such a high level. I thought there must be a way to train my attitude and muscles. My mental, emotional, spiritual muscles because as I went about my life, I had this forward-facing career as a broadcaster, TV host, professional model. I was getting more than my fair share of criticism and rejection on the frantic hamster wheel in New York City managing all of this. I lost two dear friends to suicide. It forced me to not only deal with the grief and pain of losing them but also closely examine the way I was choosing to live my life who like most people, I was placing all of my worth in the externals, “What do I look like? How much money I’m making?” The house, car, social media and all the things that society says we need and must have to be worthy of anything.
When you start stepping up into your power, and you start becoming more vocal and visual.
What a load of crap that is because you can get all the things. That’s where I was and these two men who chose to end their lives. They had all the shiny objects and chose to leave. You see that in Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain, Robin Williams, all of these beloved celebrities and some of our favorite artists and entertainers choose to leave when they literally have it all. That’s because as we’ve all experienced, you get the thing and you’re happy for twenty minutes. It’s onto the next thing and the next thing. We’re never satisfied or satiated. That lifestyle is unsustainable. That’s where The Full Spirit Workout was born is I went back to school and studied Positive Psychology, Neuroscience and whole-person coaching techniques at Columbia.
I got all the certifications because I was obsessed quite frankly with coming up with the keys for a better way of living because it wasn’t just my struggle or suffering, I looked around. I’m like, “People are unhappy. People are having a hard time with this, that and the other thing.” I wanted a different perspective and workout that no one was doing for the most part. That’s where it was born. Then you brought up the little girl. I talk about it at the beginning of step three, feel the burn about being the four-year-old at the swim club and swim lessons that I wasn’t into. I didn’t care much for my swim instructor Mark either. Overhearing him one day after lessons, communicating to my mother, that he didn’t think I was a very good swimmer.
How sad it makes me as an adult that my little sweet innocent four-year-old self came up with this mentality that said, “I have to perform at a high level so that I feel safe in the world, my mom and dad will love me and be proud of me. I guess I need to impress strangers so that they don’t talk bad about me behind my back. I got to be cool and the best.” On the positive, I broke every record at that swim club and was a state and national champion. I had a lot of success as an athlete but at what cost? I was filled with anxiety, insecurity and turmoil much of my life with this obsession, performance and perfectionism. That’s where The Full Spirit Workout was born. That four-year-old would be proud of me because this isn’t about the externals.
She is proud that my adult self knows what she knew before that comment, which is like, “You don’t have to be, do or have any of that. You just need to be more childlike, playful and focus on what matters. Who cares what other people think?” I know that’s so much easier said than done. It can be hurtful. We’ve learned so much crap as we go about the world and we make these lies our belief system rather than the compliments that we receive, rather than the truth about how powerful and magnificent we are and collect evidence with a shit. It’s so sad to me. It is heartbreaking. I am her, she is me and is so proud of me because I’m doing it. It’s not about the externals. She’s like, “You’re doing the work. You’re willing to just show up and be messy like I am now, I don’t always have it together but I keep showing up. I’m having fun.” That’s a success to both of us.
I getting that visceral feeling of this whole perspective shift and external value. Thank God I was shitty at athletics in a way. I was mediocre-looking because when you’re in the middle somewhere, you don’t have to overly perform but I could feel like for a second there, you thought that you had to do something in order to be received.
I still battle with that mentality because that’s what our culture dictates. Even to get a book deal it’s, “What’s your platform? You have to have all these externals and things.” People hate you because they were like, “You’re too pretty.” They want to put you in a box and think you’re this one thing. The comments that have been made to me that people are shocked that I’m intelligent, educated or kind. We’re multi-dimensional beings. Why is it shocking that someone can be attractive and kind or smart and kind? That whole thing that our culture does to women and women do to women like the mom-on-mom crime, the women-on-women crime and men picking our bodies apart like it’s a sport. There are many things to navigate. That’s why I do these exercises to combat the energy around me that’s like, “No, you need to be all of these things.” When you become all the things or you are all the things, then people don’t like that either.
Someone’s going to get pissed no matter what you do.
That’s why your thoughts and feelings are the only ones that matter. You got to stay in your own lane. Be like Seabiscuit the Thoroughbred racehorse, run your own race. Have a good time out there. You’re not concerned. It’s like Kobe Bryant. What I admired about him was his, “I don’t care what people think about my attitude and body that like no other.” Why is some gazillionaire concerned with someone who can’t even dribble a basketball, things about his basketball playing ability? At least he’s out there playing and playing for the world. Whatever the thing is you’re doing, even if you have one follower on Instagram but you’re putting out your articles and whatever you’re doing, at least you’re doing it. That’s how you combat the imposter. Everyone talks about, “How do I get rid of the imposter syndrome?” Just show up and do it. Be willing to not be great at first or ever. That’s me in dance class. Then the imposter has nothing to say. It’s like, “Who are you to do this?” “I’m doing it, that’s why,” and then the imposter is like, “You’re right,” and leaves you alone.
People think that you have it together. Fully believe in themselves before they start doing the thing. It’s such a myth. We would have a lot less trolls out there if those people were showing up in their own life and making a positive impact. We’d have less bored and happier people out there.
When you’re working on a passion project or you’re doing work that benefits other people, you’re immersed in that. You don’t have time to even worry about the stuff that’s going on. I think about artists or people who have done creative work, whether it’s an album, a painting, a book or whatever your thing is. I think, “You shouldn’t even be allowed to comment or give a bad review on a big creative project, unless you’ve done one yourself and you’re willing for all of us to come. Be a hater because not even evaluate your work.” I could go on and on about this subject because I quite frankly don’t understand people who just choose to bring other people down. I understand that they could be experiencing a lot of self-loathing or hatred.
I understand it from that perspective. If you think about how hard it is for people who love us to even take the moment to be like, “I love you. Great job. I support you,” but then other people feel that they can just attack people they don’t even know. That’s why it’s important to develop this inner musculature so you have the confidence to weather any storm and stuff bounces off of you because you’re too busy. I said that to myself, “I’ve worked too hard and my life is too fabulous to sit here and cry about some insignificant nonsense.” Sometimes that’s a good reminder. Maybe reading you think, “My life isn’t fabulous.” I’m going to concern myself with the insignificant nonsense. I’d argue that your life is fabulous if you’re breathing and maybe things aren’t all working out but I think your willingness to get to a better place is always available to you.
You’re talking about your spirit’s immunity. Can you tell me more about what you mean by that and how to make that grow?
It goes along with what I talked about how we think all these shiny objects are going to bring us happiness. The research indicates time and time again what my own life has indicated is that none of that stuff moves the needle in our wellbeing. What boosts our spirit immunity is our spiritual vitamins. What boosts our wellbeing are things like sleep, exercise, social connection. What we’re doing right here, but better in person. Also, time of fluence having the time to do the things you want to do, acts of kindness and service and my personal favorite, a spiritual vitamin is a gratitude visit. It’s where you think of someone who has dramatically changed your life for the better, who you’ve never properly thanked. Write them a 300-word letter. Call them up and say you want to visit. Don’t tell them why. You may have to do it on Zoom and read this letter.
I promise you will cry. That other person will cry. It will boost your immunity significantly. It takes the needle off the chart in terms of your wellbeing, not just in that moment, that day or month but for years to come. I’ve done this with a friend and I wrote about it in the book. What it did to our friendship is tremendous in a positive way. When do we usually do stuff like this? At someone’s funeral when they’re gone. I don’t know why it’s uncomfortable or foreign for us to say, “I appreciate you. I love the work you’re doing. Because of your book I was able to quit my job, start my own business, leave the unhealthy relationship, get in shape, feel great about myself.” People don’t always do that, because the norm has become to criticize or reject. These are the things that are available to all of us. I love that they’re all free and we have access to them at all times.
Allow yourself to experience life outside the box you trapped yourself into. Take that adventure and grow.
I called my dad the and he panicked. He’s like, “What’s wrong? Something’s wrong?” We text a lot, but I don’t always call. Those little moments you realized, “I need to be calling this man.” He panics every time I call like something must be wrong. I love that idea of just date for no good reason, except for every reason. It’s a sweet letter because there are so many people that were impacted by it that never know.
It’s funny you say that because my best friend from high school called me and I’ve been in meetings all day. I texted her and that’s what I said to her, “Is everything okay?” Maybe she just wanted to call and see how I was doing. In my defense, her dad is quite ill. I was like, “Is her dad okay?” How sad that’s what we do. Someone calls us to say hello or catch up and then we say, “Is everything okay? Did somebody die?” It’s a testament, so we need to do better at reaching out to people in a genuine way. Not while you’re distracted but where you have the time to sit and listen. We need to take better care of each other and nurture our relationships better. Now we can get together in person for the most part, depending on where we all live and making that effort. I always go visit friends and spend the time and money to do it, to stay connected with people.
I feel like it’s about just being who we are and letting ourselves be who we are of service and build resilience and all of those things. I’m wondering for you from your expertise, what for you are some of the best ways to let go of some of our old-ass conditioning that is from my perspective, it was an inner tyrant, constantly trying to tear me down, nagging me. I was depressed for most of my life. For me, it was the angels that helped to turn things around. What are some of your strategies to help people at first, at least identify, “This is not the truth. This is conditioning that happened to me but it’s not me?”
You said it right there. It’s identifying and being willing to call it out and then, “What am I going to do about that? That’s clearly a lie. This belief that I have to perform to be loved is a lie and what is the truth.” Asking yourself what is the truth. You can meditate. I do my sit and stare time where I sit quietly in a room alone. I stare out the window and check in with myself like I’m a small child and ask, “How are you doing? What do you need? What can I do for you?” That’s when you can sit and not listen to the ego-mind which is the limiting beliefs and all the lies but that divine wisdom that we can always download at any time. It’s like that computer file that brings it down and not just into your mind, but into your heart, body, bones and that’s where it becomes wisdom.
What do I know to be true? Ask what is true and then listen. We all need to be become more practiced at listening. We only do that when we’re sitting distraction-free, quietly alone and take yourself on walking meditation and nature. Be open to listening. Sometimes we have these choice words for God or the angels but then we need to listen to their response. Sometimes we hear it and we think, “I don’t like that. I don’t want to move to Boston. I’m comfortable here. I don’t want to quit this job and I hate it but then I have to find a new one. Tell me something else.”
Being open and not judging or editing what you hear and then be willing to follow that advice. I call it changing the channel in your mind. Just like after 9/11, when I’m glued to the TV, I was horrified by the images and my coach said to me, “You need to change the channel.” I turned off the news and put on a cartoon or a romantic comedy but we can change the channel in our minds. Many times, we wake up in the morning, we put in the horror flick and then wonder why we’re like traumatized all day, freaked out or anxious. Let’s put a different movie on, “This morning, I’m going to put on the cartoon. I’m going to be more playful and come up with that energy.” Change the channel in your mind. You can also do that by asking yourself, “What if?” Instead of, “This sucks.”
What if this didn’t suck? What if this was fun? What if this was the perfect opportunity to call up Corin and ask how we can collaborate? What if I could leave for work ten minutes earlier, avoid all the traffic and not be so stressed out and pissed off all day when I started work? Then you start to get, “What if I could take a vacation? Even if it’s just two days and stayed at home and visited some friends?” Then you get into possibilities, fun and you’re exploring options rather than dwelling in that, “Is it awful?”
When we’re there, it’s such a hard thing to boost ourselves out of it but I feel like there are many different things you can do. There’s so much medicine but I also feel like that’s why we need books like yours or whatever kinds of books that uplift you. Podcasts are cool too. There are some uplifting podcasts. Here’s the intuitive information that I’ve been getting a lot is so much of what you’ve talked about here, it is about your gaze, looking at the outside of the world as if that is the real thing and projecting our power on the outside and moving our gaze inwards for the answers and for essentially the truth. When people hear the word like meditation, they get this idea and go, “I can’t do that.” There are many different ways to engage that life force that you’re talking about out with the trees. I noticed that you have some stuff to say about social media. It’s important to say out loud.
Social media is like sugar. It can taste good but it makes you feel like crap. If that’s all you’re eating, you’re going to be just depleted and under-nourished in many ways and have the crash. I don’t know about you but I’ve been having some perfectly fine normal, happy days and you log on to social media and you feel your energy plummet. You think, “I’ve got to be more, better, different to do this or that.” This woman has the cuter house, dog, outfit, vacation, husband. There are some celebrities and pop culture icons who have done damage to women’s psyches, what we’re expected to look like and the plastic surgery and all the things.
If you get these procedures done and feel better about yourself, great. I’m not dissing that but I’m dissing these societal standards or beauty norms that are so unrealistic and damaging. Quite frankly, as someone who’s been in the magazines and has taken professionally edited photos, it’s like, “I don’t even look like myself in those photos.” Nobody looks like that. You have to go in there with knowing what it is. It’s like we go to the movies and we know it’s not real unless it’s based on a true story. When it gets scary, it’s like, “It’s just a movie.” Social media is almost like, “It’s just a movie. It’s not even real half the time,” and everybody knows this.
I’m not saying anything newer, shattering or breaking news. It’s the awareness and logging off. Even with this study say it like, “If we just make more money, we’ll be happier. If we’re just with a different partner, we’ll be happier. If we just look more attractive, we’ll be happier.” They say that doesn’t. When you think you’re in that place like, “I need all this other stuff to feel better.” Science says, “No, that’s not true.” log off of social media. Honestly, you want to boost your wellbeing, log off of social media or go and set the intention, “I’m here to connect genuinely with people and share an offer something positive or uplifting that’s going to add value to someone’s life and leave it at that. When I post something, people make comments, I like to engage with them.” I don’t know if this happens to you but I get on there and I’m like, “I need a new necklace. I need a new outfit. I need to go on this vacation. I need all new everything.” I need to spend a bunch of money to feel I’m up to snuff or keeping up with the Joneses. Being a bit more mindful on the space.
I know one of the things that’s like, “It’s like night and day.” When I go camping or I’m at a place where browsing is not an option because even when they say there’s Wi-Fi out there, you go to a KOA. There’s no Wi-Fi. They’re always lying. I love to find places and there are certain counties up here in Northern California that are horrific. We make sure to get a place that doesn’t have Wi-Fi so that my little fingers can’t get in there and engage. For those of us who spend a little too much time on there, take a little extra action to stop it.
When I think about the most present joyful, exhilarating, inspiring moments in my life, I go to my phone. I love those moments. Every now and then I want to capture a picture if I’m in a beautiful place, for instance but I spend the time to capture that imagery in my mind and I call on it when I’m in meditation. I call it my safe space. I go back to that place in my mind. Our experiences and those places where you travel, that’s in your heart, it’s in your bones forever. It’s one of the few things left in the world that no one can ever take from you.
Think how often you go back and look at the photos? Never but you have that in your mind’s eyes. More photos that we can take in our mind’s eye, the better. Presence is my first P of the 5P’s of self-confidence and giving ourselves this gift of shutting down the distractions and being all there, whether you’re with yourself or whomever you’re with, and focusing on the task at hand. Boost your confidence, joy, well-being yet, how often are we fully present in our lives and bringing our presence. That’s what The Full Spirit is. It is your authentic truth and power. Your presence and passion showing up like you mean it. If we’re honest with ourselves, we’re not showing up like we mean it quite enough. If ever, even in some instances. Let’s start showing up like we mean it and maybe you need to be showing up for different people, places, things. Let’s just start exploring that possibility.
Taking an inventory about where do you want to show up because maybe there’s a reason why you’re not showing up. It’s because you’re not digging what you’re showing up to. If there’s one takeaway that you want to leave our audience with that is like your golden nugget, what would you want to say to them?
Many things come to mind but the first thing that always comes when I hear this or think this is reminding people kindly but very firmly, everyone, you are powerful. You can do whatever you decide is important enough. Getting clear on who you are at your core, underneath all the labels, limitations and boxes that people want to put us in getting clear on who you are and what you really want. Not what you want. What you want is often what the people next door doing, friends, family, society. For instance, “I want to have pizza tonight for dinner but what I really want is to feel fit and strong and healthy and live a long life.” You don’t get that by eating pizza every night, sadly.
“I want to tell this person they’re being a complete jerk, but what I really want is peace in my life and strong healthy relationships to walk away with my dignity and not damage a relationship.” It’s just an example. You are powerful. You can do whatever you decide is important enough. The time is now. This is your sign and you can do it. There’s plenty of people like us to support you and cheer you on. You’ve got this and I believe in you.
Guys, go out and get this book. It’s The Full Spirit Workout: A Ten-Step System to Shed Your Self Doubt, Strengthen Your Spiritual Core, and Create a Fun and Fulfilling. If anybody knows me, I’m all about fun and partying. Whoever’s going to take me to the party, that’s where I’m at it. Thank you. That’s where we’re all headed. I’m glad that you’re dialed in that you got the memo too, Kate.
If it’s not fun, we’re not going to do it. I made it fun and we’re all here to have a bit more fun. That’s another message. Please go have some fun, be a bit more childlike and playful. We all need to be having a lot more fun.
How can people find you? Do you have any things coming up that you want people to know about? Where can they go to get some deeper tastes into your work?
I’d love to connect with you on my website. It’s KateEckman.tv. You can go to TheFullSpiritWorkout.com for more information about the book. It’s everywhere. Books are sold online and in stores. I would take advantage of all of the book meditations are recorded. I mixed and mastered them with a sound engineer and high frequencies. They’re for free. They’re on my website. You can go on the journey. You can start there, even if you’re brand new to meditation. Have some fun, like we talked about. Take yourself on a journey and be open to what you discover about yourself.
Thanks so much, Kate. It was so nice meeting you. That was fun.
This was so fun. You’re amazing. Thank you so much for having me.
- The Full Spirit Workout: A Ten-Step System to Shed Your Self-Doubt, Strengthen Your Spiritual Core, and Create a Fun and Fulfilling Life
- Kate Eckman
About Kate Eckman
Kate Eckman is the author of The Full Spirit Workout and a Columbia University–certified executive leadership coach. She leverages her experience as well-known communication, performance, and mindfulness expert, accomplished entrepreneur, and elite athlete to equip leaders with the tools, methodology, and energetic boost they need to excel.
Kate’s work is rooted in neuroscience, positive psychology, and whole-person coaching techniques. Passionate about mindfulness practices for both brain and body health, Kate is a meditation teacher and course creator for Insight Timer, the world’s number-one ranked free meditation app.
Visit her online at http://www.kateeckman.tv.
Here’s the link to her book’s product page on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/160868721X
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