Knowledge + Experience = Wisdom helps people realize their unique importance. Using my knowledge of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, my experience with therapy, coaching, somatic healing, and personal growth I create products to help you discover, develop, and express the elements of your identity critical to your health and your contribution to our world. My goal is to research, develop, and disseminate these materials so that every individual can reconnect with their uniqueness, realize their passion and purpose, and live the life they were born to live.
I recently arrived at the conclusion that I needed more self-compassion. I had heard this so many times I figured it must be true. Only I didn’t really know what self-compassion meant. So I started studying up on it.
See, at first I had self-compassion confused with self-PITY. I didn’t want to sit around feeling sorry for myself all the time. Or, maybe it’s because I DID sit around feeling sorry for myself sometimes and didn’t want to admit it. I didn’t want to be associated with someone who feels a lot of self-pity, so I stayed away from self-compassion for fear of going too far.
Ok, sure. So more people than usual are not working. Makes sense. There was some unemployment incentives, a little extra cash, extended for a longer period of time. That probably made not working and being on unemployment more attractive for a while. There were also eviction moratoria across the U.S. that reduced monthly expenses for a lot of renters. And, sure, there was some fear about being around a lot of people; especially in the food industry that was hit very hard by job losses.
And on the business side there was encouragement to KEEP workers due to the PPE money.
The point is, there was a lot of money artificially pumped into the economy to keep us afloat while businesses ‘took the hit’ because no one would be spending any money, people would get laid off as a result, and our economy would tank.
Instead, what I have seen, and heard, and read about, is some businesses doing extremely and surprisingly well during the pandemic. Fast food and restaurants pivoted, closed their dining rooms and focused on to-go and drive through service. Breweries switched to canned six-packs delivered. And on and on.
But even more surprisingly it seemed that everyone and their sister started being or remodeling their homes. People moved from the city to the country to buy more square footage with pools, home offices, and workout rooms. People who already lived in the country remodeled their kitchen and added a bonus room. But like the service industry, many of the suppliers could not have people in the factories and the supply of materials and homes could not keep up with demand. Which drove the prices up. But that didn’t stop anybody.
And maybe that’s what’s so surprising to me. Not only are we not supposed to have the money to buy things now, we are spending money on things we don’t necessarily need. And on top of THAT, we are paying too much for those things.
Does that sound like a busted economy to you?
How in the world can the economy be so healthy that people can afford to not work as a result of a global pandemic?
So the next question is, are people just incredibly stupid, about to be broke, and headed for homelessness? Some would say yes but there is little evidence to support that theory.
The theories are all over the place. By the time I post this there will likely be twice as many articles online but I’ll post a few:
This is the final episode in the Knowledge + Experience = Wisdom Curiosity series. I really didn’t know what I was getting myself into, whether I’d be a good interviewer, or whether people I did, or didn’t know, would have anything interesting to say about Curiosity. Well, I learned a TON about myself and about curiosity, and I hope that these interviews stimulate Curiosity in others.
I only knew one of the interviewees personally, and I we had really just met. And I knew little, if anything about the other eight. These interviews represent two people meeting, for the first time mostly, and having a conversation about whatever came to mind and using Curiosity as a starting point.
I was amazed to get so many points of view about what I thought was a pretty straightforward subject. Turns out, Curiosity is a complex idea and a word that means many things to different people. It makes me wonder if most words are like that, or if most things have a more discreet definition.
Of course Curiosity is about wanting to know things, but I was surprised to hear several people say that Curiosity is innate; we are born with a ‘ravenous’ Curiosity (according to Bernhard Kutzler, with whom I now agree). This makes me wonder, then, why we aren’t as curious when we get older? Dana Humphrey suggests it could be because curiosity often stimulates ACTION, and that taking action requires courage. Are we afraid of being curious? Fascinating.
Some folks seem to live in a world that is literally FULL of curiosity. David McRaney, for example, says he has never been bored, or never NOT been curious! And I know from experience, and several interviewees agreed, that being curious is what helps motivate me to get out of bed in the morning. So, it seems Curiosity is a GOOD thing, at least, despite potentially requiring some scary actions sometimes.
Several key elements of being human were brought up by other interviewees. There was a theme of how important it is to love yourself first and to not listen to the ‘roommate’ voice in your head trying to beat you up. It seems the state of being Curious requires a ‘healthy life’, both mentally and physically, to allow the Curiosity to blossom. And maybe this gets at how Curiosity can be ‘expressed’ into action, or held in our minds as mental wonder.
But this theme that Curiosity, both as a mental construct and as a DOING in the world, seems important. And from this series I conclude that Curiosity is a natural part of being human, and that it is CRITICAL that we nurture a curiosity to maintain health, or to ward of a state of dis-ease. Curiosity, somehow, is pushed to the side as we age and we must consciously make an effort to maintain a Curious state of mind if we want to live full lives. It is clear to me now that maintaining a healthy Curiosity is as important as being kind to yourself or practicing daily meditation or similar habits.
There is much more to be understood, but I truly appreciate the knowledge shared and created during these interviews and for the time each person shared with us. I hope you enjoy listening and that you hear or see something that makes you Curious.
Marcas Hemmila has lived a pretty full life. He was a leader in the military. He trained for the Mr. Universe competition series. He is/was a computer programmer in the fast paced IT world. And now, he aims to help us discover and ignite our lives.
The thing that struck me about Marcas was his authenticity. It’s like I tell him in the video, he has a cool combination of vulnerability and ‘I think this guy could kick my ass’. Something about that combo makes me trust him.
Marcas also has an incredible internet presence. His TikTok and Instagram videos come out at least every day, and he always has a message. He has a podcast and growing YouTube video series; sometimes solo, sometimes with interviews. His message is about helping yourself live the best life you can, and it comes from the heart.
For the seventh installment of the KEW Curiosity Interview series I had the pleasure of talking with Dan Tassone. Dan was introduced to me by our mutual buddy, Brian, who basically told me ‘this is one of the most curious cats I know. You HAVE to interview him’. Well, Brian knows me pretty well because Dan was awesome and we hit it off quickly.
Dan went to school for a long time (as we do, sometimes) to be a pharmacist, but he didn’t become a retail prescription filler. He ended up taking a haphazard journey through some very unique jobs that serve to illustrate how life is anything but linear. He now works in a research hospital where he gets to do all sorts of cool things.
These cool things, of course, stimulate his curiosity and he has a lot to say on the subject as you’ll see and hear. Dan also brings a unique perspective to a health care world often dominated by fairly uniform personality types (Type-A, if you will) and offers us a peek into his world.
Dan is also super relatable. He’s the guy you may be lucky enough to strike up a conversation with at a bar or mixer and end up super enthused and excited about your own perspective on life. You know the type. They’re not necessarily the loudest voice in the room, and certainly not extroverted, but if you end up talking with them you have a friend for life.
From CRISPR to mask compliance Dan offers an awesome take on American health care, the pandemic, and what it means to be curious in all that we do.
I hope you enjoy this interview and meeting Dan – and you are very likely going to learn something!
Dan Tassone is a self-described Type-Z personality working in the very Type-A world of professional medicine. A pharmacist by trade, he’ll tell you all about his unique role working in a hospital in Virginia’s capital, and his past experiences with indigenous cultures.
Talking to dan was extremely relaxing – and educational! He shares his expertise and helped me understand how the COVID-19 vaccines work, all about CRISPR technology and what it’s like being a curious outcast in the health care world.
I really, really enjoyed talking to Dan Tassone and hope you enjoy the full podcast and video, coming this Friday Knowledge + Experience = Wisdom.
In Episode 32: Work/Life Balance I shared my thoughts about how to find time to meet all the various needs we have. In this episode I want to focus specifically on balancing time spent working toward our careers with time spent with our families. And for those of you without spouses or kids, your family can be your parents, siblings, friends, coworkers or any other people you value and spend time with.
The main career/family issue I see in nearly all of the Americans I know is the stress associated with spending too much time ‘working’ and not enough time with ‘family’. Now these categories are pretty broad and can be broken down into the values associated with each. ‘Career’ generally means earning enough money to ‘be happy’ or to pay our bills, not have to worry about having food on the table, and making sure all family members have most of what they need within reason. The ‘Family’ category usually means being able to spend time with loved ones so that we don’t miss out on important moments (first steps, birthdays, sunsets) nor feel guilty about missing these moments. So work is really full of other values like safety, protection, health, wealth, and feeling valued. Similar, family is comprised of things like love, safety, comfort, and joy.
I think the problem arises from two basic issues: 1) work, or career, demands too much of our time, and 2) we feel guilty, sad, or devalued when we feel like we don’t have enough time for love. I have talked at length about both of these issues in other episodes, but in short the American career ideal does, indeed, demand too much of our time which I think is most of the problem. Couple that with the idea that, the higher your salary the higher the expectations of time dedicated to work then we have a huge problem for those earning a comfortable living. The wealthier you are, the more likely that the working member of the household will miss out on family time.
The good news is, by identifying your values – especially those associated with career and family – you can identify mechanisms for adjustment. Something as simple as reexamining your budget can reveal how much money your family really needs to be content. And maybe you don’t need to earn $200k a year and work 70 hours a week. Maybe changing careers is a viable solution.Similarly, maybe your spouse feels unsafe without a large retirement savings. Maybe you agree to work as hard as possible for a few years and THEN make a change.
The hardest thing to change with respect to all of these values (money, safety, time spent with family, love, etc.) is your job. Your employer will almost always dictate how much time you will spend working both in the office and at home on your phone or computer. This is hard to change because you could lose your job. BUT, you could become an entrepreneur and work for yourself (although sometimes this is worse with respect to time). You could change careers. You could split time with your spouse and both work part time, though sometimes insurance is difficult in this situation. The point is, your employer will largely dictate your work situation, though there is some flexibility if you are willing to take risks.
The rest of the values can be manipulated. If you work too much and are missing family time, you can develop and schedule time to spend together and make this a CRITICAL secondary priority. You can learn to accept your career time commitments and ‘work with what you have’. You can thoroughly examine the time you spend working at home and think about creative ways to minimize this. Do you really need to answer emails at 9 PM? Can some things wait until the morning or office time?
I don’t think we spend enough time micro-managing our time and looking at the small ways to shift career time to family time. We believe we are helpless victims of our employers. I believe career constraints can be boiled down to a list of absolutes, maybes, and potential nos. This processes can free up small bits of time that add up to being able to have lunch with your spouse once a week to check in, to take your kids to school, or other opportunities. We just forget we have more control than we think.
I hope this episode reminds you of the power you have to control your time and to find small ways to improve your career/family balance. Please share your ideas below.
I hope you are enjoying this interview series as much as I am. Dana reached out to me because talking about curiosity sounded interesting to her. And she has some new and interesting points to make about the importance of curiosity in our lives. It’s so much fun to listen to other peoples thoughts about how being curious is important to them. We are all unique, and even a simple topic like curiosity can be very diverse.
Danas’ specialty is helping people realize their self worth and to learn better self love practices. She offers several coaching and learning programs to help you move away from imposter syndrome or feeling ‘not good enough’ toward a happier and more relaxed life. She embodies creativity and has some really cool stories about her interests in art and magic. I can totally picture her leading a self love meditation at burning man.
What I find fascinating about Dana is she is leaving behind a successful pet business to follow her purpose. In helping people understand their relationships with their pets (you can find her book, EmBARKing Down the Lease of Codependency here) she realized her role was much bigger. Now she provides guidance and leadership to help us find peace and contentment in all aspects of our lives.
As someone who struggled with codependency, I appreciate Danas’ elegant approach. As she says, we don’t really need much to exist in this world as humans, but without believing in ourselves our lives are not as full. And, moreover, by accepting ourselves for who we are we can reach the highest level of contentment and joy.
You can find out about Danas’ programs and background on her website, but this interview gives you a real look into who she is, how she operates, and what she finds to be most important with respect to self love. I found myself terrifically relaxed listening to her talk. She is not rushed and you can almost see her calmness – and it’s contagious. It is obvious she is good at what she does and I have no doubt a person can find great wisdom in her teachings.
UPDATE JANUARY 2022: Dana has just published a new book! You can find it here.
I was extremely fortunate to have our paths cross and know you will learn something from our chat.
Dana Humphrey (www.danahumphrey.com) can help you transform from being codependent to being independent. Already a successful entrepreneur, Dana has shifted to coaching others to live their best lives by realizing their self worth and focusing on loving ourselves more. She’s an amazing woman and shares with us a simple approach to living a better life.
One of Danas’ central tenets is loving ourselves and focusing on self care. She shares her wisdom of her struggles and how she has realized, and come to embody, a routine of love and awareness. We can all do better at not beating ourselves up and there is a lot to learn in this interview.
Full audio and video episodes this Friday right here at K+E=W.