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E23: Liberation-Focused Healing (Shawna Murray-Browne LCSWC)

May 4th 2020

In this episode, Marcia & Marybeth revisit protecting your energy with the help of a licensed clinical social worker. Shawna is an integrative psychotherapist whose practice is centered on libe... More

this is disabled girls who lift. We are reclaiming what's rightfully ours one podcast at a time. It's mary Beth Chloe and Marcia bringing you the thoughts and unpopular topics to get you out of that a bliss comfort zone, mm hmm. Hey guys, welcome back to disabled girls who lift previously, we talked about protecting your energy and we're going to talk about it again, I'm Marcia from south florida. Hey, y'all, it's mary Beth from California and we've got a guest joining us today. I'm super super, super excited to have her on. Um she's got some amazing work in healing and she's a clinical social worker and she's been training as an integrative psychotherapist. So a lot of her skill set really involves the mind and body and healing and how to reconnect yourselves to the lineage wisdom, which is super important and super relevant now in this time. Um a lot of her beliefs, I stand by and we've been following her for such a long time.

So shawna Marie Brown, welcome and thank you, Hey, I'm super excited to be here. It's so dope. What you'll do is so dope. Yeah, we're excited to have you because I mean we talked about a few heavy things um in that episode, you know, grief and loss, um trauma, all of these things and I'm black. Um mary Beth is a Filipina, she's asian and they're just sometimes where we just feel like at least for me growing up therapy is, you know, quote unquote for crazy people. It's for white guys. It's for this and that. So I'm just wondering how what can we do to change that mindset and what, how should we be thinking about this idea of therapy and mental health? I think that if we started off with just recognizing that everybody has a mind, everybody has emotions and that it makes sense if we look at it from a historical and societal perspective, recognizing histories of oppression and the function of systems, um, if we recognize that all of these things absolutely impact how we think about mental health, how we think about mental health care, then I think the first step is for us to just acknowledge that it is not crazy to be skeptical.

Um, I think that for communities of color especially it's important for us to sort of acknowledge that we had a reason to be, have a pause about seeking therapy because the way that racism and white supremacy has shown up the function of mental healthcare originally was not to support the healing of black and brown people. And so if we start there, then oftentimes if I say if someone says, you know, I'm not really about that therapy life, I'm not trying to get with it. I can say, you know, well, I think that makes sense. Like, but now now let's talk about what we can do about our own wellness considering that truth. And so the work that I've been doing um in the city of Baltimore and that I've had the privilege of sharing nationally and internationally is if we get back to some of our original ways of healing. So maybe we weren't necessarily talking to what was called a therapist, but we were getting together in community, We were sharing the depths of ourselves, sometimes in ritual or in prayer or through dance or the art.

There are or perhaps in our spiritual practice. And so I think if we sort of normalize the fact that as human beings, we have big emotions and that, that we are not to be in this world alone, then that can begin the process of thinking about how we can care better for ourselves. Wow, that's a perfect point. And I'd also like to extend that to people with disabilities because in the same vein, the system wasn't built for us. Number one. And then number two, it's like, you know, historically speaking, you just get cast aside, especially if you are visibly disabled, like you didn't leave the house 100 years ago. So somebody with a disability now, just actually leaving the house and being like, okay, I deserve to be here. Now. What we're just meant to figure it out on ourselves. Like, oh y'all, y'all figure it out. I'm sorry, I don't look like you, I don't know how to deal with your pain or your disability, but I mean it's also really important that you say that too because google is so accessible now some people, not only is there the stigma of, you know mental health and having a therapist or a psychologist or psychotherapist?

But all you have to do is google your symptoms and boom, you have a self diagnosis or or or people think that they are more than um you know, they're better than therapy. So how do we, how do we respond to that kind of a mindset? Well, I think that so a couple of things, first of all everything you said spot on and I think that it's important to remember that even your therapist is a human being. And so there are dope therapists out here that recognize um that hopefully um resist oppressive and able ist um perspectives and the way that they offer support. And I think that if we sort of acknowledge like, hey you can choose the person that you sit across from and I know that that's actually also not something that's often talked about, but myself, a black woman who is also a therapist and I was looking for a therapist.

I come with a whole list of questions, it's like a first date, tell me what's your favorite color, Tell me why you do this or that and share with me, what's your perspective, right, share with me, your perspective about oppression. Tell me if I share with me, if I come up if I come to you with a question about um my experiences in life as it relates to the color of my skin, the way that my body moves, the way that I present myself to the world, how what is your perspective and and have you contended with the realities of how this might impact my, my healing journey. And I remember one of the times that I asked a therapist that first of all, they were flabbergasted, right? Because so many of us, you know, release and relinquish all of our ability um and power in this relationship process to um to that quote unquote authority. Um and most many of them were not prepared to answer the questions which meant that they didn't get to be a therapist right?

Like, yeah, you're the bomb. And so you deserve to sit across from somebody that is contending with, they don't have to have the same lived experience, but they do need to be thoughtful about the human experience and how beautiful, challenging ugly all of this can be so that we can really navigate these cobwebs. Yeah, I definitely agree with that. And I feel like there's a vein where some of these, not even just therapists, physicians, whatever, health professionals are not understanding that when we ask them these questions, it's not because we went on google and we think we know what's wrong with us. It's like this is a health care team. Like you being on my team is a privilege for both of us. So it has to work both ways, there's nothing wrong with asking questions. And and like you said, if that person is shocked, if they if they're not interested in that process, then they're not going to be interested in you as a whole person. Never mind. Mm hmm. Never mind. I do want to ask you though.

And there's so many terms that I see when it comes to mental health, like what does it actually mean? Like what's a social worker, What's a psycho things like what do all those different terms mean? Does it matter what I'm, who I'm seeing or what I'm going to? How does that work? That's a deep question. So I wanted to say something to about that google situation and diagnoses um before we move past it too far. And and I also think that this can also be relevant to the question you just asked about like all of these different alphabets behind the names, what do they stand for? And so when I think about google, um so google is an amazing tool. So great. Um it allows us to sort of delve into the reflections of ourselves. And I would say I cautioned folks to go so far as to try to figure out how to quote diagnose themselves one because I think that and many mental health professionals vary and their perspective about this, but because I work from a a liberation focused perspective, I do not rest first and diagnoses that is because the function of the diagnosis is so that we can identify based off of other research that's been done and mental health care, what might be a good path to be able to support your healing process.

What therapies that have been researched might be helpful and that is great when navigating that perspective. It's also helpful in the event of a mental health professional refers you to a psychiatrist which I'm sort of distinguish the difference between those wolves are but there's really no need to worry yourself about trying to diagnose yourself. I think that it is important though to familiarize yourself with what your personal experiences have been because you do know yourself better than any given or articulated diagnosis. So that's the first thing. Um So when we're talking about like who are these people out here trying to offer mental health care services. So I'm a licensed clinical social worker. A licensed clinical social worker is one who has been trained in what's considered the person and environment model that is that we are not solely mental health providers but are also trained in and aware around supposed to be aware about how systems work, how that in an interview um connects with policy, how that impacts the society, how that impacts the family and then the individual.

And so um so that is grounded on a history around working with community first. That is different say than what what's considered an L. C. P. C. A licensed clinical professor, a licensed professional counselor um or L. M. F. T. Which is a licensed marriage and family therapist. I'm trying to think of other alphabets that come up. Um Or uh Well let me talk about licensed marriage and family therapists and licensed marriage and family therapist. Their specialty is first on therapy, right? And therapy with within coupled um or in groups of people living together and family units. And it doesn't mean that they can't offer support to individuals, right? But they're going to be looking at these sort of systems relationships between your relationship with your your partner or the family dynamics in in your in your system.

And so they're focused, they're focused in that way. Um A licensed professional counselor is focused in on counseling specifically and there are different theoretical framework so they don't get too much into um Language about social justice. Um Now this doesn't mean the individual that may not you know do their own study but their academic study when they are in school does not focus on sort of the community as a whole. And then you have psychologists. Um psychologists um certainly have the ability to provide therapy but most of the time they are functioning in the role of offering testing. So counselors are trained to offer a wide range of just counseling tools that's what they focus on in their education and then psychologists are the professionals that you go to see if you are being for testing, psychologists are familiar with a battery of different tests that are research based to be able to identify whether or not some of those more nuanced diagnoses are absolutely what's happening.

So especially those who have learning differences that are seeking support a school system, they might they would go and see a psychologist to support them in getting the testing necessary and then the last but certainly not least a psychiatrist, another professional that absolutely is versed and able to provide therapy. Um But they are medical doctors, they are you know most of the time. And my work and working with psychiatrists often in um sort of governmental agencies but even in my private practice um I refer my clients to psychiatrists when we think that the natural methods are not working and they need to or um would like to uh explore medication, psychiatrists are the ones who prescribed that. And so while all of them are very well equipped to offer different mental health supports everyone is trained differently with a different focus.

Um But I think that like if you're looking for a therapist, you want to look at the way that they are introducing themselves to you online and when you get on the phone ask them what their philosophy is. Um And that will also support you in understanding where they're coming from. And does it matter for. So there's counselors, social workers, uh psychologist psychiatrist. So you mentioned a psychiatrist is a medical doctor and are all of those other fields also licensed, you know by the state, a medical doctor has to pass board and blah blah blah. Do those other things run by the same? No. So as a for licensed counselors, marriage and family therapists, social workers, we all are licensed and that we've um went to about at least two years of graduate level school. We cannot prescribe any medication, but we are able to um diagnose in the event that everyone has the highest level license in their field.

So a license like I think it's called LMS. W Here in the state of Maryland, a licensed master social worker, they cannot um provide any diagnoses. But a supervisor, a licensed clinical social worker can, so they're not, medical doctors can't give you no no prescription um but can refer and can offer diagnoses from their perspective, right? I'm just wondering if something, so when people tell me that they're looking for a physical therapist, for example, I tell them to go on their state's Department of Health and check for their license because people love saying like I'm a corrective exercise specialist or like I'm a movement activity therapist, but like that doesn't actually, you know, might not actually mean anything. Does that apply here also or is that different? So the biggest issue that where it comes here is first. Absolutely folks to check the the licensing board and the state that they're in. and you can literally just search, you'll see the alphabet behind their names.

LCB Pc behind my name is L C S W. C. If you google that with the state that you're in and the licensing board information should come up, you should be able to search their name and identify their license um number and whether or not their license is active and if somebody is being atrocious right, if they are providing a service, they provided a service and you feel like you've been discriminated against in any way, that is also the board that you would call to report them and that holds them accountable, but similar to what you said about folks making up fancy names about, you know, I'm working with the physical body um you know, we got a lot of coaches out here um and I have seen the word coach, I have, yes, and I'm not knocking life coaches alright, but there, but what's starting to happen is there is becoming a blurred line because this, this language around like trauma informed trauma responses, You have life coaches saying that they're going to help you with your trauma, oh no boo oh no, I'm gonna need you to stay in your lane alright.

I know we can work on the goals, we can work on the business development, okay. Maybe if I'm a mindfulness coach, I'm gonna teach you how to meditate alright, but don't, don't, don't, don't be going into the depths of the of the trauma. Don't know. I don't like that man. But there's so many people providing you know on the other end there are people that provide things that are giving people like the false confidence that they can do these things. So like so I'll be on Instagram on my page and things will pop up and I'll click in and a person will say like they're certified whatever therapist. And what's funny is that and I google it and somebody's offering a certification for you know $600. And now this person thinks they're like a physical therapist. Like no like I put 120K into that degree. You can't like this is not cool. And so where I will push back though is so this is really complicated. Especially when like so for myself I'm also in school, I'm getting a PhD right now and social work which is not anything that would be used for therapy right?

Like I'm a licensed to provide therapy because of my like my L. C. S. W. C. But as a PhD I'm studying and doing all of this research about the fields, one of the things that I do think is important because I am focusing specifically on the Colonial Itty basically how to uproot colonial mentality Within the ways that we're providing care and I do think that if we do ground ourselves and how we have always healed, we were not going to the person that invested $120,000 to to be able to do some things. And so I think that we have to be very discerning because it isn't that the coach doesn't have some quality care to provide and it isn't that, you know, the sort of meditation guru as they might call themselves a mind body coach isn't helpful. It is just that if they're not trained in how to handle the crisis and trauma that can come when you start to dance with these topics and then you leave folks powerfully um and a powerfully unhealthy and unsafe situation and and so in a line of what we were talking about just at the beginning, there are folks that would rather say, I mean I gotta, I gotta coach and this coach is working with me and that's one of the ways we sort of skirt around doing the deep, deep trauma work that might be necessary because we think we got a trauma coach.

And so I think it's this both and acknowledging that there are professionals to go to to apply these understandings of of, of modern medicine, modern technology and how we provide care and that does not negate um traditional ways of knowing and you know what you feel called to, but but we have to recognize when we need to go to an actual professional for mental health and I would say just go to a therapist and then get yourself a coach on the side. Listen, they can work as a team. You get yourself a therapist that's also familiar with these other these other entities. So for myself I am an integrative psychotherapist. So I studied mind body medicine. I studied in traditional ways of healing annoying. And I got that good good L. C. S. W. C. So I know both. And and I think if that's what you're looking for, you can sort of fill it out. It's more challenging because there's not a lot of us, a good therapist knows that they can work better with the team, right?

Like whoever you want on your team for your healing journey. Like if you say also I'm working with this person like the therapist needed. Alright, I got your back. Let me know if you need any other information, right? Yeah. That's how, yeah that's how it should be. You go see this specialist and say, hey I'm doing this okay, what's their number? You know, you're seeing this acupuncture guy and you're like should I do physical therapy? Sure. I know this guy like it should be all. Yeah. I think that's kind of a red flag. If you ever meet someone, they're like, oh I could do that for you to like mm mm? Mm mm. Mm. Mm. Yeah. Well not only then should someone be doing the research on these mental health professionals and seeing what their licenses are and what best fits your needs. They again back to the relationship should find out if that person is also you know queer friendly trans friendly poc friendly, disabled friendly. Like when I was looking for some um I needed a poly friendly therapist to help me and my relationships out and it's just so hard to find but it's necessary to build that because you're gonna be telling these people you're deep deep traumas yeah.

And you don't need them to be looking at you. Like let me try and tell her that this is wrong. Like that's not a part that's not the journey that you need to go on. And we had an interview with Eva Sweeney not too long ago who looked who interviews you know her future physical aids and how important that is. It's very very similar to finding yourself a therapist or a social worker. Yeah absolutely caught in a in a moment where that's actually creating more stress for you and I know personally so like you're saying you're you're trying to find someone that was paulie friendly and personally I was just trying to find somebody that was black because I would go to all of these people and they would just like they just like want to give me hugs. I'm like I don't I don't need to like what is this like what do you like? They just like wanted to be like my grandma or something. I don't know what the vibe was, but that's what I was getting from like these older white women and I'm like, okay, this isn't working, is it? I gotta find somebody that suits me and I'm still searching, but having that mindset, they're like, okay, this doesn't work for me, this is not how it has to be.

I think I think that you make a good point to around like what that it is a process that can be very, very challenging to find like this perfect fit of a person to hold the space for you. Um And I think that it's really important to do, not be discouraged, but I guess the other thing is sort of like, you may not find everything you need in one person um and you may not find one person that can stop that has a skill set to help you journey with all the other things. And so, for example, like, I really wanted to go to um I wanted to see an older black woman who was familiar with, like, I needed them to be further along, further ahead than I am. Um and and I also needed them to not know me right? And so that's actually a challenge for therapists, therapists seeking a therapist and I'm, you know, because I trained therapist, sort of locally, but nationally, sometimes focusing like, oh my goodness, I heard of you, and I'm like, you can't be my, it's like, no, I'm gonna need you, not like, oh, it's been real hard, y'all, but I found myself seeing an older black man, which isn't what I wanted because I wanted to talk about my experience birthing and I was like, this person um he don't know nothing about this product, this particular experience that I had, but this therapist was able to support me powerfully in my grief work, right?

And so his expertise allowed me to do that work. And then when I was done, you know, that meant that maybe I was going to work with um support groups for for for black moms that supported me and and charting through and doing the storytelling pieces. And so I think, you know, if you can't find someone that is probably friendly, um it's sort of identifying what aspects of the work, perhaps someone can journey with you and as long as they're not atrocious and you know, trying to tell you that your lifestyle is wrong and still be open to offering support and then you can go to perhaps a sex coach um or couples coach for addressing those things that are not necessarily so powerfully attached to trauma. Uh and if it's possible, I mean, you know yourself and your journey um best the same thing would go for finding folks that um folks of color. It's it's real out here. And just because you are black doesn't mean that you understand or that you are working from a framework that honors the black experiences.

There are folks that are they are black, but they have anti black perspectives similarly. You know, you could be a person of asian descent and still, you know, be sort of buying into some of the sort of white and Eurocentric perspective. So you know, but you know, likewise you might find somebody that that that is not um it doesn't have any of the similarities that you were looking for, but their energy, their by their heart space, you talk to them and you're like, you know what the bomb exactly. And I think that was yeah, go ahead mary beth Well, I mean no, that's why the first date or the first impression that first conversation is so necessary because you don't just flip through a Tinder page and swipe left, swipe right here, try that with psychology today, but I don't think that's gonna work so well. And even after you see them, you might do that first impression, you might go into two sessions and you might be like about this, right?

You want to give yourself some time, right? Stay in therapy a little bit now. Not if you have a visceral response where you feel like you've been mothered, that's a no, but if you're just like, I'm not sure what this was coming up for me. I don't know, it could be you just having reservations about the new process altogether. So give yourself a few sessions a month, y'all, like four sessions, you know, to really figure out if it works well and then and along the line of figuring out what works, do you think that um there's specific things that people should be doing in general, you know, like um is mindfulness, is it, is it spirituality, is it meditation or does it just depend, I think it depends on what your needs are and what you feel like it's important for you. Um and I also think that sometimes you don't know and then it's a powerful opportunity to explore those different modalities with yourself, but if you already have, say, a meditation practice or that's something that you'd like to get into, certainly it would be dope to connect with a person that, you know, is a mindfulness based that uses mindfulness based stress reduction or, you know, that uses um any sort of mindful or perhaps yoga therapy within their practice.

Yeah, so I think doing that is that is an excellent use of yoga, I mean, of yoga. Well, that's actually accurate, but no google, Right, that's the excellent use of google, look up the different modalities based off of, you know what your um what you feel like you might be experiencing, if you, you know that you're feeling overwhelmed, you might look that up and they might give you a list of, oh, try try this and you might look at that up and be like, no, I'm not interested in that. Like I, some folks are very religious. You know, if you're like, listen, I need to be faith first, go ahead. Right. If you're like, listen, I don't want to work, I'm very religious and I don't want any therapist that can't bring the bible out or, you know, some other uh text during my session, then, you know, you know what you're looking for. And I want to go back to what you said earlier because this is so important in your way of communicating to your patients and your relationships, but reconnecting to the lineage and finding liberation through that and how we can heal in these ancient ways.

I, you know, I, I put some tribal tattoos on my body, I cook filipino food. I'm working to learn the language again and you know, it's still not enough. So how, tell me how this is important in your work. So I would have to say it, it's important in my work because it's been important in my own life. Um, I learned so so much about what works for me and how I can heal by first beginning with the experiences of my own ancestors, even the ones that I don't like only trying to reclaim those, those knowing that was connected to my feelings of disillusionment in the world. And so because I found such um grounding in that experience and I feel like I shouldn't have to separate out my true identity with my practice. Um it just became a central part and how I communicate and so anyone who wants to work with me, they will see that throughout.

If you google my name, when you when I was providing therapy, you would go to psychology today and I would talk about that. And so it is um it is something that is not, there's not a really large community out there, this is also teaching folks how to commune with their ancestors. But I think that it paves a powerful way for um for black folks, indigenous folks and folks of color generally around um how do we heal generational trauma, right, recognizing that many of the methods and the tools that are being positioned as quote evidence based in the therapy realm um are from the white gaze, they amplify Eurocentric ways of knowing. That is if it's not, if it can't be counted then it isn't real. And so that isn't the ways of original peoples of the East, right? That's not the ways of my ancestors. And so there's been this both and process where sometimes I'm inviting folks, you know, if they are grieving, you know, I'm inviting them to to to commune with that energy and their meditation.

Um co leading this journey for them to commune in that way and I think that when that's what makes what I do and considered integrative because I'm not saying no to the modern ways of doing things, I'm saying yes, and let's go back to who we are, let's ensure that our ways of knowing and healing aren't lost. And what do you think about in terms of, because you just briefly mentioned like, you know, using yoga for mindfulness and all those things, what do you think about movement in general is a mental health process and complete without movement? Yes, essential to everything that I do is also about embodiment is connecting deeply with the body that we have, um recognizing that everything that we experience in life leaves an imprint in our physical body and perhaps even aspect or changes in our body that that might not have been positive, right?

Or that we're marker points in our own lives. And so um movement is so important because so I also studied traditional chinese medicine, um I'm a qigong practitioner and one of the things in my current study that I'm always sort of integrating further is recognizing that our emotions are energy and that unresolved emotion stores itself in the body and causes disease, right? And so when we're when we're thinking about um you know that that pain and our lower back, um and we we look at traditional chinese medicine and that the wisdom there and it amplifies that that pain that that lower back pain is also um in alignment with where our kidneys are and fear that might be stored there. And so if you take a moment to sort of commune with those realities, you become aware, oh man, maybe my back is hurting because I haven't processed this experience, this ever present fear that I have about being a racialized body in the world, right?

Movement allows us to, to do what sometimes words can't and that is extract and release and move energy out, um, uh, interrupt stagnation. And so that could be through what I love to do without nobody watching um, african dance or it could be literally turning on your favorite song and shaking your body being mindful of of what the vibration is or what the song is talking about because if you're trying to be happy, but you're listening to angry music, that might not be helpful, y'all, but, you know, really but really getting acquainted with that. Likewise, if you're exercising, so y'all are, y'all, y'all are lifting. Now I don't lift. But you know, I mean, another folks listen, I can't see, but people be thinking that I do because um, but that workout is that you can use that as a healing tool. Like, let's say you had a horrible week or you're really, you're still trying to process some things and it seems like you're stagnant.

I mean, you all probably know better than than me, you know, setting the intention, I'm gonna dedicate this workout to letting that ship go, I'm not leaving at this fuckinjimmie till that ship is released, right? And you can feel it in your body, you feel lighter, You feel invigorated, that's what it's all about and that's so powerful and like I know a lot of people listening do exactly that like people are in power lifting in strong man for that exact reason to release that stress and that anger, that trauma, but it's also nice to have a combination of both, right? Like you can't talk too much, your brain is gonna start hurting, you can't lift too much without talking, you need that to collide a little bit of both. I wanted to go back to the, okay, how did you say the word qigong, qi gong first energy. His energy gong means cultivation. So it literally translates to energy cultivation and I wanted to say it's not, look at you, you don't have an acupuncture or whatever.

So I gotta dabble. Okay, I got this all together for you and put it all together. So, so tai chi is a martial art form, chi gong is the healing art form. Um acupuncture moves the energy for you with the needles and intention chi gong and, and, and tai chi allows you to do that with your breath movement um and color therapies. So, so it is using that same healing technology, but in a different way, but I wanted to tell you before, oh I've had, I've had many of folks that came to me for um for mental health support And I met, I have done creative things in my office where I included weightlifting in the process of therapy now. I mean, I don't know if other therapists are like this, I'm just saying um you know, because I recognized that that was one of the ways that many of my clients already took care of their bodies. I you know, and and incorporated that in there and as a meditation and mindfulness practice to support them and reclaiming their story.

So, I mean, that's great information in general. But what would you say to people that, I mean, there's two ways of people, right, People that haven't even touched their mental health and then people that have, what would you say that either those people now that we're in like a whole last pandemic, This whole ass pandemic. So the reality is that all of us got shipped with us right now, Like there's not one being in the world. I mean, I would I would say not not one being including the animals and the plants including the earth and the insects, like there's not one being that is not powerfully impacted, both positively or negatively or indifferent through this experience. So, I think that the first thing is really grounding yourself and then and by grounding, I mean communing with your body getting back into your body, perhaps that's through lifting. Perhaps that's through going outside and sitting on the earth, but keeping some kind of practice or what I call ritual to support you and remembering to be with yourself and to care for yourself.

So that that would be the start. And then I would say that because we are also isolating and doing practicing social or social distancing and I would say physical distancing, only physical distance do not socially distance, that is call your boo. Call your friends have uh parties virtually um decided that you're still going to keep those, those workout goals or your your school goals or whatever goals you have still maintained that decided, oh, we're gonna both do this at the same time. Take a picture. Call me afterwards and let's talk about it. Um so I think that maintaining that community during this time is so important. And then the other thing that I would, I mean, there's a lot that I could say. But the other thing that's coming up for me in this moment, there's two other things, Okay, the one is to really care for and be intentional about how you're feeding yourself, right? We are our first level of nurturing and care and so, you know, we need to eat these dark leafy greens because that's our medicine.

I'm gonna need us to pull in some of those fruits and vegetables, drinking water. The lashes say water like several more times water water water water water water be with yourself exercise, keep yourself moving. Um just deciding that you will be intentional about that level of care um can be a powerful way of grounding and nourishing your emotional wellness during this difficult time. And then the last thing that I was like, oh, I have to say this to, you know, is whatever your spiritual orientation, whatever your practice is. If you have one that's been really dope and it's working for you or if you tried that one time and then it was like funk, that ship is too hard. I can't keep it up because this 9-5 life is too much attempt to revisit it, right? Dance with some new practices and allow yourself to suck up to fall off and then do it again. We have so much time to ourselves, so much to create something new.

One more. One more. I mean, I mean, it's a perfect time to get to coagulate your, your wellness team. If you've been working on your mental health and your therapist was wack, this is a great time to get a new one. Everybody's offering virtual therapy right now. So even if they 45 minutes away, but in the same state, you can see them all right? Because everybody right? Everybody right, You can't see somebody outside of the state. Well, unless they have licensed their unlicensed where you live. But you can see, I mean, listen, my therapist, 45 minutes away, But I'm I don't have to even drive, y'all. I'm gonna just get up on the computer, so great time to add that on and then, you know, if you're gonna, if you, if you need something that your therapist can provide, you know, awesome time to also consider these sort of virtual groups, virtual coaching, you know, get your life, your life, feel about the apps that are out there. Also there's so many different apps now that exists.

So there's like meditation apps and then there's like, I don't know what much about the therapy apps because I don't look into them, but I see the ads. So I have always been challenged by this idea of technology taking over the way that we do things. So apps for meditation I think is powerful and great paired with some sort of embodied and connective practice, recognizing that things like mindfulness and movement derived from traditional wisdoms that we're always practiced and collective. Yes, it's also practice individually, but let's not replace people with technology altogether. So I would say do so thoughtfully and and a balanced way. Same for therapy. My thing with um, with the apps for therapy. Um, because we're getting even to a point where folks are saying, oh, we can text and do therapy. I'm not about that life, like some human connection here, but I'm also not gonna knock someone who decides that they want to to journey with that because that's where they feel like they can start to be able to care for themselves.

So while it's not for me and I feel a type of way about it. I'm gonna say that if that's the way you can take care of yourself, you, if that is what is accessible to you do your thing, if it works for you keep with it and it's true, like you gotta start somewhere right, just like with lifters, we all started with a cookie cutter program that was free online and we didn't talk to anybody, didn't hire anything. It's the exact same thing you start off with that. But if you want to be a professional or a more competitive power lifter, you got, you need that one on one, you need somebody that works with you uniquely because everybody is different, every mind is different. So, Oh man, I love how the to connect on that same end, It could be a lot for you, you know, holding down other people's grief and loss and you're going through your own shit. You seem very powerfully grounded. But how are you managing your own mental health and wellness?

What are you doing? Well, I'm not seeing clients right now. Um but I stopped seeing, I paused on seeing clients last semester because I was doing the most I was doing the most. Like I was, I'm full time in a PhD program. I'm a mommy, I am partnered. I have a business and I was doing community work. So I had to pare down the way that I support community, you know what, I can't be holding these healing circles every week, y'all, I'm gonna do something once a month. Um I am pausing school actually right now, pause for the last month since we've been in and during the pandemic so that I could focus on my ritual practice fortifying that, my relationship, my marriage, fortifying that being the bomb mommy. Like I'm trying to be kind of mommy that people be like, hey, I'm trying to be like you. Yeah, well nourished, right? So like I'm out in the garden.

Um I just, I bought a house recently and my backyard is looking like what the fuck? But I'm getting it together, okay, we have that, we are growing some food, we gotta cool crops out. I got my warm crops in my office under the light. Um and I've been communing with my ancestors regularly that, but so essentially I pared down, I'm slowing down. I'm reassessing and I'm really sort of talking to myself about um ways to disconnect from school ish nous that is this sort of idea that our value is only in what we produce. Um and I'm revisiting that. Yeah, so I'm really, I mean, you know, I mean I was having a challenge when I was a cold snap. I can't like do, I can't produce, I can't do all of these things and so it's bringing up a ton for me to um fuss at prey to cry about with my ancestors so that I can come out of this more fortified and with bigger love for my people.

And I think that's so true because there are so many you know like they call it hustle twitter like there's so many people like oh you got all this extra time if you're not working on your side hustle or you're not doing this like no no no that's not where we are center. If we want to center all of the things that have been contributing to our poor mental health um you know and we want to exacerbate it. Sure go ahead and grind hard when your body is telling you not to. I mean if you feel inspired grind that shipped out create like that is the bomb. If you if you are in the home alone and you're like yes I've been waiting for this time and it's a gift. Do it. Listen to yourself. But if your body is like I need to fucking sleep. I'm tired of ship. I'm overwhelmed then no like deciding you're going to grind it out is going to further silence your inner voice and what we need to do right now is be communing deeply with our inner voice and with the earth because the earth is telling us if we don't get our ship together we ain't gonna have no shit.

Oh jeez that's that's it. That'll do for me. Thank you shauna. I need to find Me one of you over here in California. Do you have anyone like you? I'm a little more of you. I'm gonna I'm gonna just clone yourself and ship ship yourself over man. I actually was trying to clone myself for myself. I was like ship if I could just go to a sauna mary brown, you know, with an asterisk on the side and just so that would be amazing. No, I have not found myself anywhere, but I am connected to um collection of therapists and if you inbox me, I will, you know, support you in identifying a person. And I will say, I mean, that's really the other leg of my work, right, is trying to teach other um liberation focused dope. Don't focus on how to do this well and anything else mary beth before we close the episode, any other lingering questions, you got nothing for me.

Like we've got it covered. Yeah, you covered so much. I mean, it will give you this time to, you know, plug whatever you want to plug We saw that new york times article you wrote recently, actually roommates, your partner getting on your nerves. So I know you offer tons of things you, you've offered on speaking engagements, you know, skills groups, community healings, that he'll assistant project going. So yeah, the best thing. So what I'm working on right now is communing and coagulating. Like a village of folks that are really down for the work that I'm doing virtually. And so folks can keep me on my Patreon page is www dot patreon dot com forward slash Shauna Murray browne with an E. Where I'm hosting virtual healing circles every month where you get access to my workbook. Um And we're talking about all things liberation focused, healing, all things healing generally. Um And then the other thing, the things that I have coming up um I'm working on um some healing circles that will happen virtually and be paired with my online healing platform.

Um So that's gonna drop over the summer. So folks can absolutely follow me on my I. G. A healer. Sister folks can decide that they want to stalk my facebook page. That shauna Murray brown L. C. S. W. C. Or you can hit me um on my website. Shauna Murray brown dot com. So those I'm really just trying to be accessible but not do the most. My intention is to do released while still being in alignment with my with my vision and purpose. So I mean that was a lot. And especially for this kind of episode I would invite you to if you have to pause at certain moments pause or listen to it twice. Listen to it twice because we hit a lot of things and and this ship is really important because we are often the others, you know, we are the less than were the black and brown were the disabled, were the women and you know, we have to be the strong, whatever nurturing and therapy is for crazy people like no, we're gonna knock all that down. We're gonna find ourselves a nice little team.

We're gonna do whatever we need to do to heal. We're gonna find some sort of movement and if you feel like you have to listen to this episode twice and listen to it twice, but get somewhere with it. So thank you again, Shawna mary beth you're the best Chloe. We miss you girls out. Thanks for listening to disabled girls who left. We appreciate all of your support and everyone who's taken the time to show us some love. Don't forget to subscribe, rate already. Review of our channel. We're on Apple podcasts, Spotify player, FM, google podcasts and more. You can also find us on instagram at disabled girls who left

E23: Liberation-Focused Healing (Shawna Murray-Browne LCSWC)
E23: Liberation-Focused Healing (Shawna Murray-Browne LCSWC)
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