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Ep89 Looking backwards and forwards

by Jacqui Brauman
December 24th 2021

A reflection on 2021 - our personal, mental, spiritual and business journeys - including a review of our learnings from our guests. More

Welcome to the I. Q. Not ZQ podcast. I'm Jackie roman, principal solicitor at T. B. A. Law and Ceo of legally wise women. And as always, I'm here with joe Stanick, former corporate lawyer then head of HR and now an emotional intelligence coach. Good morning or Good Morning, Jackie. How's it going? Christmas week? Yes. It is so close to the end of the year. Episode 89. So 100 and next year we're going to alter the format a little bit again, taking three or four weeks break over january. And then we'll go back to a fortnightly format with guests only because we accelerated this year and had our mini bites in between. So that sped us up and got a lot of consistency. But it's a lot of work. It is, yes. Especially for you doing the editing. So having to do something every week on top of everything else. But fortnightly is well and truly doable.

So. Absolutely yes. Mm hmm. So we wanted to sort of have a bit of a review again of the year. This episode like we did last year. I know this year has just flown, hasn't it? It's gone. But it's been, I was reflecting on it this morning actually getting ready for our broadcast as hard as it's been. I feel like it's been really productive on a personal and business front as I think it has been for you too. I agree. I also feel like it's flown. I keep thinking it's still 2020. Yeah. But the transformations this year have been really dramatic. It's almost like 2020 was static and we got to redo it this year and have all the growth that That we usually expect in a 12-month period because certainly my personal and spiritual growth and then the growth of my business has reflected all that as well and yeah, the stuff that we've achieved this year and finished off, I think that's what makes it feel like a big deal as well because we've actually finished off a whole lot of stuff.

Yeah. And it's funny you say if you look at those flights of, you know, mental, emotional, physical, spiritual, it's like last year, Like now it's been 12 months since I've left home and separated divorced all of that. So like that's been on a personal front, bloody huge transition. The change the, you know the shape up in Jesus's life with that as well with moving to homes, the business side has grown and if we look at our guests, you know, we have now invested in crypto. I just finished on a personal spiritual front, the four day vedic meditation course this weekend which I'll share in a minute. So it's and my courses done like everything's done like it has been a I think the biggest year of my life, it really has Biggest transformations absolutely and getting things done and both of us are so set now for 2022, like all our stuff is done. No more creation just consistency.

Yeah, exactly. Right. Like it's, it's all good to go. It's funny like no creation. I'm meeting with my V. A. Today Call with her tonight at 5:00 on my drive home because she's like, I don't know what I'm doing now because everything's done, everything's uploaded, I'm like, oh my God, like yes, what, what, what, what are you gonna do? It's, it's a really interesting conversation to have, like literally the week before the year ends because that was my goal was to have it all done a big celebration. We should take a moment and actually go, wow, what amazing creatures we are. I know we've done it and you know what the good thing is that both action takers, but I also think having the podcast and catching up like the way that we do, it almost holds us accountable, doesn't it? Some of the stuff that we say we're going to do, that's right. And it has us thinking deeply a lot more than we probably would because talking to people who have been quite successful and gone through transitions and bringing up other topics that we might not talk about on a daily basis in our fast lives.

We stop and we reflect and we actually have some deeper self awareness and and eat you amazing. Yes, Yes, that's right. And I think we've had a lot from our guests this year, from our point of view to reflect around the burnout and the whack, haven't we? Like we've had a bit of that. So I think that's really brought it to the forefront of our attention and we both ended up doing that the vedic meditation course. So yes, tell me about yours. Oh my God. So I did it with Niko and it was an amazing four days and I'm doing it twice a day. Absolutely loving it. And you would have heard of Tom Knowles. Right? Yes, definitely. I've been listening to his podcast for long. I just signed Up yesterday. I'll be listening to his podcast and I signed up to his membership as well. So it's $50 a month. Us and he does a talk for three hours every month, but live Q.

And a. And the questions he gets asked are amazing. So if you join the membership, he actually unlocked the whole 2020 once you get 12 episodes like 12 of them. But you can watch one a month. So that's happening. And I've decided I'm going to do teacher training in 2023, wow. You know, and Nico's teaching it for the first time ever. He'll be great. And I said to him, can you do it? And he's like, oh I don't know, I might just do it. And he's like, all right, I'll do a small group because if you learn with Tom Knowles, you have to go to Arizona for four months residential. Mm hmm Not practical for anyone that's a parent or a business owner clearly. So yeah, he said he was running in 2023 and I'm going to do a couple of one on one mentoring sessions with Niko in 2020 to to get ready. Amazing. That suits you know, so now that you've done the course as well, you understand why you can't give your mantra and does your mantra change when you do it?

Like, like do I take it, you mean, does it morph in your head as you do as you see it? Yeah. It's funny, isn't it? And you can't sometimes even remember it until you sat for a minute or two, correct? Yeah. And I'm sure you use the same words, but I love it when you see a smile on the inside when your thoughts come. But yeah, it's, it's just incredible. And the benefits if anyone here is listening to this, I'm telling you guys now just go look up vedic meditation, look at tom Knowles website th om que en el es And you'll get a flavor of what it is. And I'm definitely like today today. No, I'm only doing once a day now. I was doing twice a day for the 1st 40 or 60 days or whatever it was. And I think the twice a day has huge benefits. It's just that it slipped and got too busy and I couldn't fit it even though I love it. And so I know that the first one is enough to settle my mind and remove the stress, but if I got the second one in I'd go that deeper level, which is why I'm not getting the transcendence right?

Yeah, because you go below the surface. Yeah, and I'm actually enjoying the, to look forward to it. I was doing it in the car on the way home, stopping somewhere and parking and doing it, but I was going to say stopping, I hope Jackie jesus christ like driving and doing it, you can't do that, that's dangerous. So yeah, parking and doing it before I got home because I just cannot do it at home in the evenings, but it also adds an extra half an hour, so I'm not getting home until 7 30 or eight o'clock and I just couldn't keep doing that. So next year I'm going to try and pop it into the middle of the day. Yeah, pop it in like, and you know what, and you know, Nicole was saying, like, you know, one of his clients at work does it in one of the rooms at the office and it's really encouraged other people to meditate as well for half an hour a day in their break. So it's um and it's helped the business altogether as a result of that. So yeah, so I will, I'll try and pop that in. But yeah, our guests this year have taken us on have sort of followed along the spiritual journey that we've sort of had this year and deeper emotional journey because we started having self love month in february.

And so we actually introduced some topics under the podcast we haven't spoken about before and then we had three guys over the March period as well. So we had some men, yes, that was really good. And that was about connection relationships, the business side of things, but also the element itself loved that sort of flowed into what the men were saying too. So that was a great month. That's right. And it was good to really reflect and have some really highly emotionally intelligent men on as well because I guess they are out there, it's just that we prefer to focus on women because you know, men get so much lift up in life, let's lift some women. Yeah, that's right. And then as you said, we had sort of things peppered throughout with well being and burnout and peppered sort of through some really inspiring things like talking about sustainability and getting through the pandemic and like having some local roots as well.

So we really spoke about a couple of times, particularly with Kate Dillon with her shirts locally made in Melbourne and pivoting and making your business still thrive. Yeah. And then, you know, we did the financial well being because I think for you and I, that was a big aha moment of, you know, it's something that we always just think, yeah, we'll do it later, we'll do it later. But have we really sorted it out and I think that was really good and to have a bit of a risk element to and invest and learn a little bit about that and I'm really excited now that I can say I've like done that across four different platforms. Wow, that's, that's great. What a big Step with with an investment of 20 K. So it's great to have done that and see it go up and down and it's something that's gonna be a long term investment but it's just good to have it done, you know, and do that. So yeah, that was good. And then, you know, like you said the burnout thing, I think we've both been very mindful of and you know, we had that moment, you know, where we, you know, we had that dip to remember where you were feeling quite in the middle of the year.

In june and july mm hmm. And we spoke about, you know, your vulnerabilities and how you are feeling then. And then you had to take stock and have a day off the business or either planning day I think to get you through the end of the year. Yeah, yeah. And I had some real hard talks to myself because to be honest, it was the first time when it actually slapped me in the face and I realized that I was hustling and working so hard to supplement underperformers. And so I just had to finally say to myself, No matter how much you want someone to achieve and the potential you see in them, if they are not realizing it, you've got to cut them, this is a business. And so I did. There are four people went in 2021 and I have a great team now. And in some respects, you know, I wish that I'd learned that lesson earlier in business. But thank God I finally learned it. Yeah, it's funny you say that I ran a session for a law firm actually on the, you know, the behaviors that you need in your business that make your high-performing team.

And there's these two psychologists that interviewed um 75 different groups of people. Right? So get this. They interviewed them like teams that had climbed mount Everest or high performance teams like cardiac surgery teams, emergency response teams, military teams, football teams, famous football teams, theater people. Like a whole range two year research. And they put up the eight characteristics of a high performance team. And you know, some of the stuff was stuff, you know, like, you know, Unified leadership, collaborative goal recognition, reward, external support. But the one thing that people always always forget when I run this session and we're trying to get them to guess what? eight was competent team members and people do not think that that's the thing. And I'm like, hang on a minute because it's so true because if a business, how can a business be high performing if it doesn't have competent team members And it's such a big aha moment because I run this session for about an hour and break them up into teams, they're going to guess or late or write down or late and no one, no one can get mm hmm.

It's so true because looking again back at those underperformers and particularly when we started performance managing and really putting them under pressure, how much pressure they put on everyone else in the team because they were just dropping the ball and everyone got so annoyed about it and you're right, it's then to recover. But you know what? The team has just come together so much more bonded over the fact that we did that process as well and I can't look back. Yeah. Yeah, I know. So that was that going through that year and then a bit of a sprint wasn't it? After that hump so much from september through to the now wow disappeared because we did our planning, didn't we like both of us sort of plan our last quarter in our businesses around september and we don't really take the foot off the pedal until about now. So yeah, I know it's been a really interesting journey this year and then and then everything that's going on external to us as well.

So we're obviously navigating lockdowns and Sydney had a really long lockdown like we had last year and then we went into another really long lockdown and the exhaustion of all of that and the anger and then the vaccination debate and finally coming out the other side in freedom. Like it has just created so much division in the communities around us. And yet I feel like with everything going on externally, we've got really tight little close worlds around us that are doing really well. Yeah, I agree. Yeah. How are you feeling going into the new year? I feel like there's a hell of a lot of momentum. I feel pretty positive because again, like everything's really built and everything is ready to sort of thrive, but I'm still missing a couple of things and it's it's people like I'm still trying to recruit probably three people, like one really key person as well to sort of take over a lot of the actual legal work that I'm doing because I am so stretched and that's the other thing that this year has shown like we've had Pretty much a 60% increase without extra staff.

And I've been saying for a long time that, you know, I'm doing the work load of three people as it is and I need to focus on what I bring to the business best and yet this is almost like a test as if like no, you can't stop doing legal work because you know you need it or something but it's just so frustrating. Where are the people? Yeah that's right. It has been hard to get get roles. Yeah, I hear you. I'm on the I'm on the other side of you know higher the instruction designer this year which has been great and she's finished now obviously because the it's all built unloaded and I'm thinking I really need a gun of a salesperson next year but it's so scary just to like the cost of putting someone on and I know you would have felt that when you put your first person on, you know I'm at that stage I'm not haven't got a team but it's it's really daunting. It's almost like that with every person though because they've got to then pay for themselves. But at least with a sales person they're more used to a commission style and so you could pay them a lower base and give them a higher black commission share based on performance.

Whereas other people just tend to be a bit more of a leech sometimes. Like they just don't understand that it's a business and they sap the life out of it. Yeah, that's right. I was just doing something yesterday with my business coaching and I thought I'd share it because it's really, really powerful and they were saying that you know how our mind and it's really timely going to the new year, we ask ourselves questions right in our mind all the time. And those questions have a negative bias. Yeah. What would happen if this happens? What will happen if that happens? And I'm just gonna pull it up because I wrote it down to share. And this basically said the importance of questions is you can choose to ask a question that will empower you or disempower you right, you've got a choice. So you should ask yourselves questions that empower you. And some of these questions, I'm just going to read these out because I think it will literally reframe how people think is ask yourself, why is it so easy to generate new clients?

Why my clients so pleased with my efforts and my business, Why are they so happy to refer me to their friends and associates? Why am I such a good match to their needs? Why do I expect my marketing to do so well and bring me new clients and why do I see my business booming so much this year? And you know what? It was a really interesting thing to go. It's so true. Like why can't we ask ourselves those questions? And this is all about your brain training? So, what, what john was saying here was that if we ask ourselves empowered based questions, our mind will automatically start to think of the answers as it does with negatively framed questions. So he's like, you might ask yourself the question, you might go on a walk, you might do this, You might drive But your brain is actually processing that question and he says it will come up with solutions to the empowering question and I'm like, do you know what? That is one small freaking hack I am committed to doing next year and I'm gonna I'm gonna write them down for my business and I'm gonna put them up, I'm even going to put them in my car like on the dashboard and I'm going to ask myself, I'm going to train myself next year to ask more empowering questions than Disempowering, How cool is that?

That's really cool. And you know what? It's funny because you and I probably trained people around doing some of this stuff in different context but don't apply it to ourselves in business because I I apply this same thing to people in a conflict situation and tell them, ask your brain a complex question and it will pull you back into the moment and amazingly your brain will solve the complex question. But it's usually the complex question is what do I actually want from this situation and how should I behave if that's exactly what I want? And yet we don't do it for ourselves. And I just wrote down a couple of the ones that you read off there because there's certainly something that I think that I should be asking myself because you pose a complex question to your brain and your brain is an amazing thing. It will start looking for solutions. Even subconsciously. Mm hmm. And I'm like, you know what? I'm so doing that. So one of the biggest questions to ask is why is myself person doing so well? How did I find such an amazing salesperson?

Yes. Yeah. So yeah, I just thought I'd share that to kick everyone off because it's something very small that everyone can do it. It's really good. I listened to a podcast yesterday talking about work creep with everyone sort of working from home or working more flexibly. And I just wanted to see you know how you were managing it. I mean you and I tend to hustle a lot being in business for ourselves. But you've also been able to start carving out a couple of weekends here or there, which you don't touch work And how important you've said, how important that is, particularly in the concept of burnout. So how do you think that moving forward, that work creep is going to be re confined And how do we not feel guilty about not being available all the time anymore. Yeah. Look, it's been a struggle. I know that initially when I started this and I had a bit of Time out and I'm not talking about a whole day off. I'm thinking about finishing at 4:00 or something right?

There was this element of guilt. Like I almost felt like someone was going to ask me why and that no one would write? But it was that awful feeling and then do you know what the shakeup was it? Was that some wack conversation that I reflected on because I could feel certain things happening to me that were a sign of burnout. And my biggest realization one morning was I googled symptoms of burnout and I'm like ship if my mind is googling and wanting to know the answer to this, that means there's a problem. It's like when you're dehydrated, right, you don't wait until you're thirsty, right? Same thing, right? And you know, because because you're already dehydrated by that time. So I was like, okay, I'm experiencing some burnouts. So what I do now is at least one weekend a month, at least one I have off saturday and sunday. Yeah. But to combat the guilt because I couldn't just sit and watch tv and do nothing. I would listen to a business podcasts and read a business book. So I would do something that was personal development. So it never felt wasted. But even then my business coach was like stop that because your brain needs to rest.

So I've gone from now I do one weekend of personal development or coaching for myself and one weekend is literally nothing like I, and you know what I do? I put my laptop out of sight, have you started reading novels instead? Like what are you, what are you doing? Because you're not just sitting watching netflix. I have really Yes, that's so surprising. Wish I know and it felt like such a waste but I was just watching just random ship right? So I put a movie on but then you know it takes two people on walks like multiple times in the day in the pits makes a difference. Yeah. So it wasn't like I was watching you know netflix all weekend but and those weekends I'd make an effort and cook something really nice even though it's myself. So I spent a bit of time in the kitchen. So yes, so one weekend a month is definitely zero work and my laptop is not even in spite it's literally put away in a drawer because I've got a small apartments and my work desk is in my lounge. And yeah, the other weekend is just work like work business related learning.

It's pretty incredible. And as you said like we had, we actually had that conversation in self care month in february around the slap whack mack truck. And yet it actually didn't hit us until we spoke to jess jones about burnout in july. So it was a good six months that we sort of sat on that information and really didn't apply it to ourselves. And I've sort of been thinking about this work creep a lot as well because as I said, I'm probably doing three full time roles and Then the intensity has gone up another 60% or so because of the amount of work and I'm just like, well I've got so much packed in and as soon as you start easing back, there's a whole lot of guilt and there's also a whole lot looking around going what is wrong, like I should be extremely busy and so there's getting your mental mental state or your head around the fact that it shouldn't be at that intensity level and that you actually provide a lot more, a lot of value by doing things deeply and not Fast.

And so I've sort of also been thinking a lot about what my role should entail in 2022 if I get this, these two or three extra bodies into my business roles are going to be removed off my plate. And so how do I not feel guilty about not doing the intensity that I've done and still feel like I'm doing valuable work for my business. And so I've been really thinking about that a lot and getting my head around that because my own position description in my business is changing and the most valuable work that has been, what I should be doing in the past is no longer. And so It's shift. I think mine will ship next year because yes, I'm still doing the doing, but I think what I'm going to do now is be more selective about the clients I'm doing the doing with and get my 12 month course sold to large corporate. So it won't be me delivering it. Mhm. Because everything is like literally done for you.

Like, you know, this guy says this that's done. So I'm really excited for next year. I think it's going to allow me to not do a lot of the joint providing I get the right person. So for me, the first I think three months is going to be the pressure and the stress and the mind games. My mind's going to play around investing in a a decent salary person. Right? And look again, we're paralleling each other because I've got to get a couple of people into key roles as well before the next stage. And so that has to happen early, early next year to be able to take the next step. Mm hmm. It's funny in such different industries and that such different business models were still pretty much paralleling each other with what we need and what we're doing the other thing that's really come to mind this year. And I'm not sure if it's because no, it's not because of that because I stopped watching the news.

But what's been filtering into my awareness has been, you know, a whole lot of lack of integrity around leaders in all sorts of space this year. And it's really been making me really aware of my own leadership and making sure that I am really Integris because I think we're surrounded by there's been a lot of people being pulled out for corruption. There's been a lot of denial. There's been a lot of people coming forward whistle blowing and a lot of women coming forward around sexual harassment and all sorts of things with people being called out. And there's been a whole lot of defensiveness and sweeping things under the rug. And you know, I think that generally people are a bit over people who black integrity and I think that is like a general sense that's sort of coming up all over the place. I agree. It it feels like it's been coming up almost every year for the last few years and it's it's the most prominent, hasn't it, for 2021.

Yeah, very much so. And I think that rather than me getting mhm annoyed or getting up on my soapbox or anything like that about others not being Integris, that's actually made me look internally and go, well if we're going to be pointing fingers, let's make sure that, you know, I I'm not a hypocrite. And so I think, you know, there's a whole lot of noise with people pointing fingers on social media all over the place, but I think it starts at home and with your own behavior and I'm not sure, you know, sometimes you get triggered by things that you're actually annoyed about in your own personality and that sort of started making me go, oh my God, I hope that I'm not a hypocrite hypocritical. So yeah. Yeah, I know. But all you can do is have awareness to your actions and ask for feedback life.

I think that's, you know, something that we as leaders probably don't do enough. It's a fear of, you know what we're going to hear. But I think it's it's really important and ask like continually asking people around you if you know, if your words match your actions. It is a hard question to ask. And I think with the team that I've got now we've been doing a whole lot of work around our behavior and around our understanding each other's communication styles and strengths and all those sorts of things. And it's been we've been having a lot of deep conversations to understand each other better and to understand where we're each coming from and what triggers us in certain situations and things like that. I think the conversation that I'm having in my team is crucial. Mm hmm. It's pretty authentic and vulnerable. And I think that it's just making us a tighter group as well. Yes, that's right. And you're building trust, aren't you? Each other as a group. That's right. Absolutely. I think that that's potentially what's been lacking in my leadership is that I've been so protective and defensive of myself and trying just to provide everything for everyone else but not giving any part of me and so by being a bit more authentic and open.

I am, I am showing that I'm willing to trust them. That's a huge change where you were at the beginning of last year. Sure it is, it is a huge change. Yeah, Wow. Let's see what 2022 brings, right? Yeah, No, let's reframe that. so excited for what 2022 has going to has brought us, Why have we been so successful in 2022? Yeah, that's right. I love that. Yeah, I think it's a great reflection. I think despite all the external stuff, 2021 has been a great year for both of us. Very challenging. But I always say that I want challenges in my life, like it would be pretty boring life if there weren't challenges and growth and all those things. So I guess That's it for 2021. Thank you so much for being with me throughout the year or great thing.

Yeah. I really love how we'd like supported each other and held each other accountable this year and it's been good. That's right and gone deep and challenged well you particularly challenged me more than anything but great. It is good. Yes. So if anyone wants to reflect with us or comment on anything that we've gone through or that you might have paralleled with us, please reach out like dot com dot au. We post these interlinked in as well or where can people reach out to you? Yeah. Dot Academy please. Wonderful. And Jackie at legally Wise Women dot com dot au. So I hope everyone has a safe and relaxing holiday period. It's looking like, you know, we've all got our freedoms and very excited for for next year. That's for sure. Yes. Wonderful.

Thank you. Catch you next year. Everyone next year. Thank you.

Ep89 Looking backwards and forwards
Ep89 Looking backwards and forwards
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