[00:00:00] Speaker A: We need to work with our emotions and not against them. And we want to listen to them, not squash them down. You know, at the end of the day, I think we all, you know, would benefit from being more in tune with our feelings.
[00:00:15] Speaker B: Welcome to the agency hour podcast, where we help web design and digital agencies create abundance for themselves, their teams and their communities. This week we're joined by Dawn Sant, all the way from the south of Manchester in the UK. Dawn is an academic psychologist who specialises in anger and stress management and offers a psychoeducation program for those dealing with anger and stress. She's also a self described vicarious mavericks fan and is very good friends with one of our Mavericks club members, Jeanette Elton. And in this episode, we dive into the fundamentals of stress. Understanding your natural fight or flight mechanisms, how you can learn to identify and deal with your own triggers, plus a lot more, is a super interesting episode. And we're definitely going to have dawn back for version two. If you ever find yourself suffering from impostor syndrome or simply struggling to manage your big emotions, then you're in the right place. I'm Troy Dean. Stay with us.
Without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome to the agency hour podcast, the fabulous dawn sand. Hello, dawn. How are you?
[00:01:20] Speaker A: Good morning. Or is it afternoon? Or is it evening? Depends where we are.
[00:01:25] Speaker B: Well, it depends on where. You know, it's funny you mentioned that, because I used to start every webinar and podcast back in the day by saying good morning, good afternoon, good evening, wherever you are around the world. Because we do have people in just about every time zone on the planet that tune in to our content.
For those that don't know, who are you and what are you doing here on the agency hour podcast?
[00:01:46] Speaker A: Well, I am very good friends with Jeanette Elton, and that's one of the main reasons why I'm here.
We have talked in great detail about impostor syndrome. I don't call it impostor syndrome, but I do believe it's something that.
Well, definitely. Jeanette and I, and I project this onto the world around me, and I think it's a very common issue for all of us to deal with. And we were just talking a little bit before about how we can dip into our impostor many, many times during the course of a day that matters.
[00:02:30] Speaker B: Yeah. And it's just a little bit of context for people. You are not an agency owner. You're a psychologist. And Jeanette Elton is an agency owner and she's in Mavericks club, our mastermind she's been in our ecosystem and a customer for a long time. And I finally met Jeanette last year in San Diego in 2022, which was awesome.
And so how did you and Jeanette come to know each other? I'm curious.
[00:02:55] Speaker A: Through my website.
It's a very long story and I think, well, okay, so, yes, I used to go out with her hairdresser.
[00:03:05] Speaker B: Fabulous.
Okay, now this is interesting. Now we're getting into the.
[00:03:10] Speaker A: Now we're getting.
Yes. And so Jeanette started to do my website, so she took it over from somebody else and the rest is history. Really great. She was interested in what I do, and we have done quite a lot of work together on both levels, really, in terms of my work and her work. So I'm sort of vicarious mavericks fan.
[00:03:38] Speaker B: Excellent. Just for the benefit of people listening, what services do you offer as a psychologist? Is it kind of general psychotherapy, counseling work? Is it specific mindset? Are we doing corporate retreats in Bali? What's the kind of range of things that you.
[00:03:54] Speaker A: Now there's an idea.
No, I specialize in anger and stress management. That's specifically what I do. I'm not a therapist and I'm not a counselor.
I offer a psycho educational program. So it's very specific and I deal really. So fundamentally, anger is an extension of stress.
So I often have people who are struggling with anger issues.
But of course, stress and anger filter into our lives in lots of different ways. So we might identify as anger issues, we might identify it as feeling stressed, quite simply, but it's often responsible for issues in relationships, parenting challenges, conflict in the workplace.
So it sort of goes across all sorts of different areas. It's a really useful thing to do, actually, anger management, and I would strongly recommend it because I don't have any anger issues. Well, that is not really the point. It's a really interesting route into managing emotions and understanding the dynamics between human beings and how they work.
[00:05:14] Speaker B: I could unpack this for a long time. I'm not sure what you've got on for the next three weeks, but we could be here for a bit. Because I'm a parent. I have a six year old and a three year old.
I have a whole bunch of stuff in my head that I've had a lot of therapy over the years, different types of therapy, psychotherapy, CBT, talkie talkie stuff, a lot of EMdR. I'm doing some, a new kind of type of therapy at the moment, and partially because I've recognized over the years that I do have an emotion regulation. I find it hard to regulate my big emotions, right? And someone posted recently in my feed, anger is the way men cry. And I'm not sure I fully subscribe to that. I understand where they were coming from. And I was talking to a friend of mine about this recently, actually, who I cry at the drop of a hat. I have no problem crying. I find it incredibly healing to have a really good cry. And since I've had kids, like, I'll watch an episode of Bluey and I'll be in tears. I read my kids a book last night. I read them the Lion King last night, which it's a kid's version, so it's like 20 pages long. I've never read the book. I've never watched the movie. I know it's hard to believe. I had no idea what happened in the Lion King. I read the book last night to my six year old and my three year old, and I'm weeping at the end of it. And Goldie, my daughter, looks at me and says, real tears, dadda, and touches my tears on my cheek. So I'm quite okay with crying. I was talking to a friend of mine recently who's a bloke, he's an english bloke and he can't cry. He said, I wish I could cry. I just can't let myself cry. And we were talking about how and I don't want to make this, I don't want to get too gendered here, but I will say, as a boy growing up, you're kind of taught in my generation, anyway, you were kind of taught not to cry, right? Don't cry. Boys don't cry. It was kind of ingrained in us and he would love to have a good cry because he feels like it would really help him. And I said, dude, it would 100%. It's very cathartic. It's a very healing experience, crying. And I've actually learnt, I've had to learn how to cry. So when I saw this post that anger is the sound of men crying, I understand where it's coming from.
I do think, and what I really want to unpack here is that my theory is that anger or stress, the root of all of it, is some kind of fear.
For me anyway. When I'm angry or I'm stressed or I'm crying or I'm sad, I can trace that back to.
There's some kind of fear. I'm afraid of something, right? It's either I'm afraid of abandonment, I'm afraid of losing something. I'm afraid of failing. I'm afraid of being embarrassed. I'm afraid of there's some fear at the root of what's going on. And sometimes that fear causes these big emotions in my body.
I call it the rage in my belly that causes me to raise my voice or get frustrated or go into the bedroom and scream into a pillow. And the funny thing is, as a parent, trying to teach a six year old boy how to regulate his emotions forces you to understand that you've still got some work to do to regulate your big emotions. So I know I've just given you a lot there, but I feel like this is a private therapy session that's going to be published on the podcast. I wonder if we can just unpack that for a little bit and maybe talk to that.
Yes, that's right. It'll be a podcast series. Exactly. We're launching a new podcast here, ladies and gentlemen, with dawn sand, our regular guest.
[00:08:53] Speaker A: I just want to bring it back to something really basic. And this is the level at which stress really, and anger, to me, is the extension of stress. It's the short fuse of stress. Once we get stressed, we get more irritated and our fuse gets shorter, so then we're more likely to express our anger. But stress fundamentally is our survival mechanism, so it's really, really basic. And so when you talk about fear, you're absolutely nail on the head. So given that we've got this survival mechanism, it's fight flight, and that's what we're all geared towards. But we have the absence of this saber toothed tiger these days. Now, fundamentally, what we all perhaps need to recognize is that we have these two structures in our midbrain called the amygdalae. One amygdala, two amygdali each side. And I see them as like little threat detectors, like this, like little Antony with a little dish on, and they're just kind of scanning around all the time. They don't look like that. They're just embedded in your brain for threat. And if they detect a threat, they then send signals to other parts of your brain in your body to trigger the fight flight mechanism.
But of course, we don't really need that because, well, some people need that. Some people do live in war zones and where they are literally fighting for their lives. We don't in the UK, you don't in Australia.
So that's not part of our day to day know our amygdalai. What people don't understand is that they can't differentiate between an actual threat to life and a perceived emotional threat.
So what we're doing, generally is overreacting.
And there's a lot I could go into around. And I am not the expert in all this, but I've got a general idea.
Neurons that fire together, wire together, and we set up these kind of neural pathways in our brain. And so when the amygdali detects a threat and we respond to it, the amygdalai will then learn that that is a threat to us. So next time it happens, we're going to have a similar response. And so it goes on. So then we start to sort of habitually behave in that way. Now, we don't want to do that. So I have an example. So a really simple example.
I don't know if you've ever sort of come across somebody like, I don't know, like an ex. Well, it happened to my daughter.
I hope she doesn't listen to this.
So she'd finished with her boyfriend, or her boyfriend had finished with her. I have no idea. But it was many years ago, and we were in a college where they both were, and he passed her in the corridor, and she just went sheet white.
Her fight flight mechanism triggered in the blink of an eye. She had to go and sit down.
Now, he was an aggressive man or boy, young adult, young person. They'd never fought. There was no issues like that. But that's that fear, isn't it? And if she could have, she would have bolted. If she was an animal, she'd have ran for her life.
And then that sort of brings in the other aspect of the fight flight mechanism. We've got fight flight, freeze, faint, or flop and feign.
So there are different presentations of that in our day to day life. So there are times where we do just want to run for the hills.
I remember sitting, waiting for an interview, and I just wanted to run. Just thought I could just bolt right now.
There are times when I'll just go for the jugular, I'm going to defend myself, and I will kill Maimon disfigure. And it's not.
[00:13:23] Speaker B: Yeah.
Even though there is no saber toothed tiger attacking you. Right. Which is actually funny, because my wife will say that quite often that there is no saber toothed. There is no real danger here. I've realized I only have fight. I don't have flight or freeze. I think I've suppressed those responses. Like, if I feel like I'm in any type of. If the amygdala go there's any kind of danger, my fistic cuffs are up. And I'm written metaphorically and I'm ready to fight, right? And it's exhausting. It's freaking exhausting.
The kids will drop breakfast on the floor and I freak out. I think part of this is, and I hope you know, my mother's never listened to this, but part of this is learnt behavior from my mother, who is a little bit highly strung. Lovely. I love her to bits. Hello, mum. I love you to bits, mum. But she's a bit highly strung about stuff. We call her the panic merchant.
If you drop a cup of water and the water spills, but the cup is a cup, so there's no glass broken, there's no real danger. The carpet is a bit wet. Oh, lord. And I'm like, oh, it's catastrophic, the fact that the carpet is a bit wet, right? And my brain goes, oh, we're going to have to get the carpet replaced. And then they'll rip it up and they'll find the floorboards are rotting. And then we need to get the whole house restumped. And we only moved in six months ago, and I'm going to have to get a second job to pay the. What's going on? Get a paper towel, you idiot, and mop up the carpet. You'll be done in 30 seconds. Why am I so easily triggered into that fight mechanism?
[00:15:06] Speaker A: Okay, well, there are also other factors that we can consider. So it would be a fight flight mechanism.
Neurons that fire together, wire together. So it's a very well trodden path.
It's not going to be susceptible to neural pruning. So even from a young age, we go through these different phases where our brain prunes some of the pathway, or many of the pathways that we don't use, but those ones are very firmly entrenched from quite a young age. So they're not going to get pruned and we're just going to repeat this behavior. One of the driving factors is what I call a core negative belief. And this very, very strongly relates to our impostor.
So it's not very professional to call it a core negative belief. It's a core belief that we hold. And some of them are just for simplicity. So forgive me, everybody and all the other professionals out there, some of them are positive and they don't bother us, they don't limit us, and some of them are negative and they are limiting. So I have a method of identifying pretty much which one you land on most of the time. So I'm a failure just to let you all know that. So that's my limiting belief. That's my go to limiting belief. And so let's take the cup, for example, and if it spills, and I'm going to call it overreact because I think we can call it different things. I think we can say it's a survival mechanism. Yes, it is. It's also then known as the stress response because that's really how it presents to us.
We can call it the amygdala hijack, which I kind of like. Or we can also call it overreacting, which is really what it is. Because, as your wife said, tiger.
[00:17:14] Speaker B: Hey, I think the challenge with overreacting is when you say overreacting, somebody who's experiencing the threat, and I totally agree with what you're saying, but I think if you call someone out and say, and my wife and I have had this conversation over the years, is I will get more defensive if she says you're overreacting, and vice versa. If I suggest that she's overreacting, it makes her more defensive because the person is experiencing a real feeling where they really feel like they're in danger. And so it's like, well, don't tell me I'm overreacting, because what you've done is you've then nullified my feeling. I need you to validate my feeling so that I don't feel like a lunatic. But then you can tell me that my response is maybe disproportionate to the actual danger. But first of all, I need you to understand that I'm feeling in danger. And that's a real feeling.
I don't choose that feeling. It happens to my body. What I do with it is I'm choosing probably not the wisest thing to do with that feeling. And I would definitely like to make a smarter choice and a wiser choice so that my frustration and fear and anger doesn't land on the rest of the people around me. But first of all, let's acknowledge the fact that what I'm feeling is real. It's a real feeling in my body. Even though there's a splash of water on the carpet and there is no saber tooth tiger, I feel like I'm in danger. Right?
[00:18:34] Speaker A: Yeah. Okay. So there's a couple of factors there that I think are really worth talking about because. Absolutely. I think when we talk about overreacting, and I talk about this with clients as well, because it's often used in a very negative way, isn't it? Oh, you're just overreacting. It's generally a put down, isn't it? That's how we feel when somebody says that we're overreacting, because, as you said, it doesn't feel like we are.
But when I say it, I mean, it's in a literal way. I mean, it's in a biological way. I mean, there isn't a saber tooth tiger. Our amygdalae have learned to overreact because it isn't a real threat to life. So we've trained ourselves to be like that. So when I sit. But of course, no one else is going to really understand that, and they're probably going to take it personally. So thank you for that, because this also connects very beautifully with the core negative belief because it's an interesting issue, the core negative belief, because the question that we want to ask ourselves is, what do I make it mean to me? So how do I get to feel like a failure so often?
Okay, so one of my triggers, for example, is dress code, knowing what to wear. So I went to a networking event last week, and I made a conscious effort to challenge myself just to just prove to myself that I've traveled some distance in my own work. And it was really interesting, actually, because if I don't know what to wear, I've been in situations before where I've turned up a party and I've stepped onto the threshold and I've looked in at everybody, and I've just thought I've got the wrong thing on. And what I make that mean to me is everyone else got the memo. They all know what to do. They've all been and got the right thing for the right occasion. An idiot over here gets it wrong, misjudges it.
I didn't get the memo. I'm not smart enough to figure it out or think it through or whatever it is. And in that moment, I want to bolt. I just want to run for the hills and go home, change.
Now it's all very irrational, because what I make it mean to me is I get it wrong. That means that I'm a failure. So there's lots of different sort of core beliefs that people can hold, limiting core beliefs, negative core beliefs. And it might be I'm weak, I'm a failure, I'm not important, I'm not worthy. I'm helpless, I'm powerless. I'm unlovable.
You get the gist. So there's all sorts of different ones underneath it all. So above all that, we sit at the I'm not good enough.
So, dawn threshold of the party got it wrong. She's not good enough. Underneath that, I feel like a failure. Underneath that is a feeling of general unworthiness.
So back to the situation with spilling a cup of water.
It's like, so for me, my narrative would be I've somehow messed up because I put the cup in the wrong place, or I didn't use it. If you're talking about kids, I didn't use a cup with a lid or, I don't know, I can't imagine the situation. But I would make it about me. I would make it that I've done something wrong. So back to the overreacting word as well. So if somebody says to us, well, you're just overreacting, we take that personally as well. What do I make that mean to me? Guess what? That I got it wrong, that I shouldn't be overreacting, that I'm pathetic in some way, and so obviously I failed. Now, if somebody says to me I'm overreacting, that's all about them. It's got nothing to do with me. That's just their opinion. I don't have to worry about their opinion. So we can learn different ways of reframing what we're used to doing and relearning, and thank goodness for neuroplasticity. Relearn different ways and create new pathways. And it takes some practice. So back to my networking event. I made a conscious decision. I was just going to go as dawn. I was just going to wear whatever I'd worn working that day with clients. And I trotted along and I arrived and it was put on in a very lovely, posh place with some very smartly dressed people.
And I was just there with my cardigan and my trousers and my flat shoes. And of course, the imposter popped up. Of course I shouldn't have. And I'm using the word very purposefully because we can all erase that word from the hard drive. Of course I got it wrong and I was just like. And I stood there having literally this dual conversation going, yeah, we're good to go, thanks. I don't care what people think about what I'm wearing. All I care about is who I am and what I've got to offer and who I want to meet and what I want to get out of this situation.
So it didn't last very long, but back in the day, rewind, I would have found it very difficult to stand on that threshold and step in. I did, by the way, in that situation, and on reflection, nobody cares what anyone else is wearing.
[00:24:38] Speaker B: Now, if you are dealing with overwhelm and the idea of hiring someone to help you just freaks you out and you're just not prepared to do that right now for whatever reason, then the fastest way for you to continue to grow your agency and have the capacity to deliver for your clients is just to plug in to a solution like e two m who are our exclusive partner here on the podcast for various reasons. One, we just have such an alignment of values. We've got a great relationship with Manish and the team at e two m, but also they do bloody great work. They have 180 staff in their office, their hq in India, and they do white label WordPress development work. They'll build landing pages, they'll take care of all of your care plans. They'll also do SEO, white label SEO work for your clients and also copywriting through their copy agency, Razor copy. You should definitely reach out and have a conversation with the guys at e two m solutions about where you are, what you're trying to do, what you need from them. If you go to e two msolutions.com agency Mavericks, we'll put a link under the show notes here. Just click that link, go and have a chat with them, tell them what you need. You'll get a good deal on your first month so you can take them for a spin and try them out. And hopefully it will free up your headspace so that you can then focus on what you need to do in the next three months to continue to grow the business, while those guys will just take a bunch of stuff off your plate. I have actually worked with e two m. I dug in recently and helped one of our Mavericks club members out who was unwell and was in hospital. And I helped him manage some projects and get them over the line and he was using e two m to do the dev work. Their communication was outstanding, super responsive, did great work, followed development best practices. So I can, hand on heart, recommend these guys, having experienced them myself and also met them at our live events. So check out etomsolutions.com agency mavericks and increase your capacity so that you can free up your headspace and focus on what you need to be doing. All right, let's get back to the show with dawn. I went to a wedding on the weekend and I, a week ago, I looked at the invitation, said, this is a cocktail party. I need a black suit. I don't have a black suit. My wife's like, you don't need a black suit. I'm like, you don't understand. You can wear whatever you damn well please to a cocktail party. Men have to wear a black suit, not a tux, because that's black tie. But if it's cocktail, we have to wear a black suit shirt and a black tie. Maybe if you're a hippie, you can wear a blue suit, right, or a light blue suit. Or if you're really flamboyant, you could wear a light gray suit. But I'm wearing a black suit because I've been to cocktail parties before, and I've been the only guy in a blue suit, and everyone else is in a black suit.
I know that people look and go, he didn't get the memo. You're supposed to be in a black suit. So I wore a black suit. I hired a black suit, and I wore a black suit, and I walked in, and the majority of men were not wearing black suits. They were wearing kind of different colored suits, right. And I'm like, I don't care. Screw you, I'm in a black suit. I got it right. So I know that feeling.
I just want to put this on the record. My underlying belief is that I'm invisible.
[00:27:45] Speaker A: I don't matter, okay?
[00:27:47] Speaker B: I'm not heard, which is probably why I do what I do for a living. I have a podcast. I make videos. I broadcast myself onto the Internet because I grew up. And over the years, my experiences kind of informed me and taught me that my opinion didn't matter and I wasn't heard, and I didn't feel validated and wasn't seen. Right.
And that plays into a lot of things. I want to talk about this from a business perspective, and then I want to come back to neuroplasticity from a business perspective. As an entrepreneur, you put yourself on the line, you take massive risk, you put yourself out there. I liken being an entrepreneur to, it's kind of like getting punched in the face 150 times a day and then getting up the next day and choosing to do it all again. You're constantly, and I think it's part of that, I think is also a story you tell yourself, right? I tell myself that I come from the northern working suburbs of South Australia. I shouldn't be here. It's a miracle that I'm here. I shouldn't be this successful. It's all going to come crashing down one day. That's a dangerous narrative because you can actually manifest it. It can become a self fulfilling prophecy. You can sabotage your own success if you tell yourself you don't deserve it or that it shouldn't happen to you from a business owner's point of view. We talked about this preshow that you can wake up in the morning and feel like, yes, I'm super positive and I'm going to get out of bed and fight the good fight and keep going and grow this business. And before you've had your first coffee, you get an email and your whole world's falling down because a client's complaining about something or something's gone wrong. And then by lunchtime, you're on top of the world again because you've got this new person you're going to hire and they're an absolute rock star and they're going to help you. And then by the time you go home, you're ready to get a job at Walmart because the whole thing's falling down. Like it can happen multiple times a day. And that can be hugely triggering to anyone who feels like they're not good enough on some level. Right? And I also, a couple of questions here. I'm curious with anger management, I'm curious about the gender balance here, right? Because the stereotype is that I just turned 50, right? So I'm talking from a particular generation, but also I think the stereotype is that men typically have more challenges managing their big emotions. And there is definitely some neural development between men and women with the right left brain develops a lot quicker in females than it does males. And so boys, young boys have a problem reconciling the fact when their mother leaves the room that she's going to come back. That whole object permeance thing tends to have permanence. Thing happens quicker in girls because their right left brain knit together faster, typically speaking. So I'm curious, in your experience, if there is any percentage swing between men and women when it comes to anger management or anger being manifested. And then what I want to talk about is the neuroplasticity issue is how you talk about these neural pathways that have been knitted together and the whole fire together, why together thing. We talk about that here all the time. Like what you focus on is what you attract into your life, right? So if you're constantly focused on what you're not getting from your partner, guess what? You're going to get more of what you're not getting from your partner. If you focus on gratitude and what you are getting from your partner, you're going to attract more of that from your partner. So how do we then start to undo some of those neural pathways that have been knitted together for 50 years. And how do we start to train the brain to fire differently? I know I've just given you a lot there, but I think the two questions are, is there a gender imbalance with anger management? And let's unpack neuroplasticity and give some people some practical things they can start doing.
[00:31:27] Speaker A: Okay, in terms of gender balance, it's not something that I've ever noticed.
I've always said that I've seen as many female clients as I have male clients, and I never know, really, when I have a client who's got the issue, whether it's them or whether it's their partner.
And what I suspect is it's always going to be a combination of both of them. So I don't think that there is a gender issue at all. I think, again, I'm going to strip it right back to basics and say, anger is a feeling.
That's all it is.
And I think nobody likes talking about anger because they think of violence and aggression. There's shame attached to anger. Anger is an expression of our shame as well. But there's shame around shame, and there's shame around anger.
But fundamentally, what I teach all my clients is it's just a feeling. It's the same as happy, sad, hurt, shame, fear, peaceful, powerful. It's just a feeling. And what I say is all of our emotions are. They are our guidance system. So many of us tend to think about what we think, and we pay credence to what we think over how we feel, and most of us don't even know how we feel. So if we just randomly checked in with ourselves and said, how do I feel right now? Many, many of us will be going, nothing.
All right, fine.
So we don't have great emotional literacy, and that's my starting point with everybody. And anger just tells us there's an injustice, that there's an imbalance, and it's something that we want to attend to and look at. It doesn't mean we have to go on a shooting spree. It doesn't mean we have to go and garot somebody. It just means that there's an injustice and that we want to tackle it and rebalance the scales. That's all it means. It's data. So when we feel angry, there's nothing wrong with it. It's data. It's telling you there's an injustice when we feel sad. So sadness you were talking about before is really interesting because sadness is quite cathartic. So is anger when we're really being aggressive. But that's not a really helpful way of expending our energy. Sadness is usually associated with, like, a slowing down of pace, isn't it? When you think of somebody sad, they're kind of, like, a bit more, and they probably talk a little bit more quietly or in a lower tone, and our actions are slower. And everything around sadness is that the purpose of sadness is to give us an opportunity to reflect, to slow us down. Sadness is always a sign of loss. And it doesn't matter whether you've lost your favorite gold pen or you've lost a person in your life, it's always associated with loss. And what did I just lose? What did I miss? What did I just think about?
An opportunity, a person, or whatever it is, and that sort of slowing down that depression of our energy, which is why the other end of the stick to sadness is depression is to give us time to reflect upon how we're going to move forwards without the thing that we've just lost. It doesn't matter how big or how small that is.
Hurt is a mixture of sadness and anger.
Shame is our kind of moral compass.
And again, there's a spectrum of shame, really, from feeling guilty, bad about the fact that I forgot my friend's birthday, and I can correct that.
Or shame is, I feel bad about myself, not what I did. Shame is like an internalized version, so it's not, oh, I got that wrong. It's like, I'm wrong.
I did that really badly. I'm bad. So that's kind of both ends of the stick of that. So, anger is data. Anger is just. There's an injustice, and where would we be if we didn't have it?
Such a valuable emotion.
So I'm a big advocator of anger. I'm like, let's pull it out of the closet. Let's own it, and let's be able to say, I feel angry. I'm not threatening you just because I feel angry. If I feel angry, it's because I've noticed that there's an injustice. It's as simple as that. There's nothing bad about it, nothing wrong about it. We just want to learn to work with our emotions so that they are our guidance system. And if we cared more about how we felt than anything else, our lives would be completely different.
So if we listened to our emotions and actually did something about them, our lives would be a different ballgame. And I talk about, like, a sweet spot. So, I don't know.
I used to play squash many years ago, and you've got like the tea spots on the squash court. And that's the place where you always want to be standing because you can get all of the shots at the drop shots at the front, drop shots at the back and the side shots. You always want to be on that sweet spot. And I liken it to our homeostasis. Our homeostasis, for us, that sort of balance in our bodies, physical and emotional, is a balanced state. And that's like our sweet spot. And when we are in a state of homeostasis, we actually naturally feel quite happy and contented.
And I see the other emotions as like the stretch.
So, oh, I've got anger over here. I'm just going to go and sort that injustice out. Oh, I feel sad over there. I'm just going to kind of figure out how I'm going to move forwards with that loss. Oh, I felt shame about that. Okay, can I correct that situation? Do I apologize?
I don't know. How can I put it right? And so we need to work with our emotions and not against them, and we want to listen to them, not squash them down.
And I think society has a lot to answer to. Yes, boys don't cry.
You're not supposed to show your feelings, probably as a male, definitely in the UK, that's part of our culture. Don't get me on the patriarchal society because I'll really go on one. That's a whole other series I've unsubscribed, by the way, so I don't subscribe to any of this. At the end of the day, I think we all would benefit from being more in tune with our feelings. So the second one was this neuroplasticity wasn't.
[00:39:05] Speaker B: Know. Because the thing is, I think the most important thing when Oscar was born, I remember within the first three or four weeks, I thought to myself, the most important thing I can teach this boy is resourcefulness and resilience, the ability to figure stuff out and yourself and then get up when you get knocked down, because you're going to get knocked down, life is going to knock you down.
You can't protect children from shame or anger or guilt or any of that stuff. You can do your best, right? But it's going to happen. They're going to experience those emotions. All you can do, and I've come to understand the meaning of resilience through talking a lot about this with my wife, is the ability to come back to homeostasis, the ability to come back to a normal state. And emotional resilience is something that I've had to work really hard on to nurture within myself so that I don't get stuck because I can get stuck in anger, I can get stuck in not so much rumination. I used to get stuck in rumination, but I don't really get stuck there these days. But I can get stuck in anxiety, I can get stuck in anger, I can get stuck in fear. I can get stuck in those big. In the injustice. It's not fair. And it's an injustice towards me because I'm not good enough and I'm invisible. I'm not being heard right. This isn't fair. You need to listen to me. I can get stuck there. And so the resilience, emotional resilience piece is being able to return, deal with it and be able to come back to a normal state. So how can you start to retrain your brain that there is no saber toothed tiger? It's okay. Let's come back to homeostasis. Even though I'm on fire inside.
[00:40:50] Speaker A: Well, okay. Well, there isn't a silver bullet, so I'm not going to promise that you can just click what you can do it. Sorry.
Spoiler alert. Everybody disappointed.
[00:41:01] Speaker B: Bloody hell.
[00:41:03] Speaker A: Sorry. I can only apologize.
It's a work in progress.
I still challenge myself. I'm the greatest observer of myself. I'm always testing myself out and watching my responses without judgment. I used to be very judgmental about myself and now I drop the judgment. So the way that I work is, one, figure out how you're feeling.
Two, understand what your core negative belief is. And we want to kind of move that out of the way because that's a narrative, that's a false premise that's set up when we're kids. That's a very rigid belief that we form unconsciously. And because it's unconscious, take it through into our adult life. So we practice it a lot, and it's a belief that's based upon only evidence that supports it.
Because we're kids, we haven't looked at the evidence against it. So we take this childlike belief unconsciously and live and die by it practically as adults. So pulling that up into consciousness is very, very powerful. And understanding and dealing with that once and for all is really powerful. And I see mic or negative belief now, and it pops up as actually a guiding light. It's for me to kind of go, oh, is everything okay? Have I got this? Am I on track? Am I being dawn? Or have I been hijacked? Or have I hijacked myself? Let's put it that way.
The third aspect would be to look at projections and how we project our feelings onto other people and how they project their feelings onto us, so how we're not really very good at owning our own stuff. So this is something that you'll probably get quite a lot of in agencies, people blaming you, shaming you, telling you, should have done a better job. You made me do this, not owning our own stuff. Projections are like, just like arrows. You're just dodging them all the time. And it's really, really important that we learn to withdraw our own projections from other people and also learn to spot projections. Because sometimes I'm just responding to your stuff and you're activating my stuff. So if I cannot respond to your stuff, I won't activate my stuff. So that's really powerful. But then the most important part of any of the work that I do, we understand our feelings. We move the core belief out of the way. We've got some transparency over projection so that they're impacting us less.
But I call it the stairail. Out of the dark, really is how I meet my own emotional needs. So again, I have a method of identifying the most important emotional needs that are relevant to me. You've already identified yours, your needs to be listened to, to be valued. And there was probably another there as well. So what I do is I kind of pick a client's top three needs only for practice, because I've got loads of emotional needs. They are being valued, being listened to. For me, it's very important to have agency. My top one is to be listened to, to have agency, to be able to speak up and say something or take action and do something and to trust.
There's all sort all manic clarity, integrity, respect. All of these things are emotional needs. But I just pick our top three and focus on them so that we can practice them. So our emotional needs are our boundaries. Okay?
So another sort of misnomer really, about boundaries is that they're mine. And what many people do is kick their boundaries over to the other person. So I'm going to use an example of time here because I love it, because lots of people have issues around time.
And I just love being devil's advocate here. Okay? So somebody really says to me that time boundaries are really important to them and they love to start a meeting on time.
You knock yourself out with that. It's your boundary. So if I rock up late, what are you going to do about it? Because it's not my boundary, but what we tend to do is kind of. It's a bit of a warning. It's like, you better not be late.
I'm not the one that has the issue around time.
You deal with your own boundary. Don't you be kicking it over into my ballpark. I've got enough to deal with and I'm just dealing with my own. But I'm not taking yours on board either, as well, rather. So that's the issue about all of these emotional needs, which are our boundaries. So for me, if it's important for me to be listened to primarily, what I mean is it's important for me to listen to myself.
[00:46:43] Speaker B: Right.
[00:46:45] Speaker A: That's the most powerful aspect of it. So if I listen to myself and I'm hearing that there's an injustice or that I need to do something over there, I want to then take action, I want to actually do something about it. I want to really listen to myself and not be listening to what somebody else has told me to do. Equally, if I'm with somebody and they're not listening and that's annoying me or triggering me in whatever way, it's up to me to do something about that. It's up to me to say something. It's up to me to ensure that I get my boundary met. It's up to you to listen. You don't want to listen, that's up to you. But if it's important to me, I then have a choice as to whether I continue to engage with you or whether I cut the meeting short or whatever it is. So boundaries are really important, but we've got to take ownership and they form. I think one of the really powerful things about boundaries is that when we've identified the emotional needs that are important to us, they can also become our business values as well. And they're the ones that we need to carry through into our work. And with clients, that's the way forward.
[00:48:05] Speaker B: Yeah, there is so much here, and we're definitely going to get you back. And I am conscious of everyone's time.
Just a little anecdote here. I have this really annoying habit that when I'm at home and I'm talking and there's much noise in the house, that no one's listening to me, I just go and start talking to the fridge as a way of letting everyone know that I'm not being heard. And it's a bit of a smart ass move and it drives my wife crazy. She hates it. But I'm like, well, the fridge is going to listen. No one else is listening, so I may as well just talk to the appliances.
Not the smartest, not the best way to deal with it, but very passive aggressive.
This is a big departure from what we normally talk about on the show, but it's super interesting and impactful. And I know that we're going to get a lot of great feedback on this and I would love to do this again at some point in the future if you're up for it. And I want to thank you so much for coming on and sharing some time with us here on the agency hour. How do people get in touch with you if they want to reach out and say hello and thank you for this episode?
[00:49:10] Speaker A: Well, through my website, I'm not a great fan of social media. I'm not on social media a lot. I just like to focus on working.
My website is my biggest kind of superpower. All my details are on there. It is undergoing and has undergone a rebrand, a revamp.
It's going to be a work in progress because it's dependent upon.
Yeah, but generally by phone, email.
So I can check your details.
[00:49:46] Speaker B: Yeah, we'll put links under the show notes here. New dawn psychology is the company name. We'll put links under the show notes here so people can reach out and get in touch.
[00:49:55] Speaker A: I mean, I am on Facebook and Instagram and LinkedIn. Contact me on LinkedIn so you can message me through any of those formats. Whatever's easiest.
[00:50:06] Speaker B: Awesome. Well, Dawn Sant, thank you very much for spending some time with us here on the agency hour. I'm glad we've crossed paths. We have a mutual friend, Jeanette Elton, who's been on an amazing journey and transformation over the last few years, and she continues that journey. And yeah, again, just thank you so much for spending some time with us here.
[00:50:22] Speaker A: And thank you for having me. And thank you for inviting me. It's been great. I'd love to do it all again.
[00:50:28] Speaker B: That is great.
[00:50:29] Speaker A: We'll definitely have you back to me.
[00:50:30] Speaker B: In all fairness, I know, well, we'll definitely have you back for round two at some point.
[00:50:36] Speaker A: Thank you.
[00:50:39] Speaker B: Thanks for listening to the agents hour podcast and a massive thanks to dawn for joining us. I really enjoyed chatting with dawn and we'll definitely have her back on the podcast. And gee, it is tempting to create a spinoff series, just a focus on dealing with some of my inner demons. What do you think? Troygettherapy.com and we'll just publish it. Okay, folks, please don't forget to subscribe. And please share this with anyone who you think may need to hear it. Any freelancer or agency owner who is struggling to grow their recurring revenue, build a team, and turn their passion and their skills into a real asset and a profitable business, share it with them so they can benefit from listening to the podcast. I'm Troy Dean, and remember, the chicken and the ostrich are the closest living relatives of the Tyrannosaurus Rex.