Jen Smith is a yoga teacher, writer, the Director of a busy Yoga Retreat and Event Club, a Fitness Director for Equinox, a wife, mom, and stepmom. An expert at unity, bringing the true meaning of yoga to one practitioner at a time, she is a leading light in the spiritual and yoga community of Los Angeles. She is also Amy's friend. Amy and Jen were awestruck by their parallel lives, when they both happened to be dating men who were also parents to two boys, age 6 and 8, eventually marrying and becoming stepmoms. On this episode, they share a conversation that reflects their years-long journey of supporting each other through their commitment to consciousness- as they navigate the challenges and nuances of blended family life.
Marlene Nichols is a member of Strong Words, a movement of writers and storytellers in Los Angeles and Palm Springs, and the last time we both performed at Strong Words we carpooled and wished we had recorded our conversation. Weeks later, revived our chat for “Something Better”. Marlene also teaches writing and storytelling (and has a class starting soon). We got the chance to talk about the healing experience of embracing your own story…and the interview has a “part 2” that happened after Marlene shared about her love life, so we hopped back on the call— don’t miss the end!
Hilary Powers has an incredible story of redemption to share. She wrote a memoir called Peanuts to Percocet about how her childhood as a big earner in voice over and acting cast a shadow over her life that she got out from under- sparking, shining, and spreading hope. She lived the prayer that this podcast was named for: “this or something better” and through surrender of what she could not change and exerting control over what was hers to discard, she gave up the fantasy and entered her dream. #somethingbetterpodcast #happynewyear #nevertoolate #dontgiveup #trust
Vol 2 of my tips and insights on spiritual self care during the holidays!
Have you heard the podcast Dirty John? I met four single girls on my way to vacation for my 5th wedding anniversary in the gate of the airport, and they urged me to listen to it. What a deep dive I took into asking questions while I listened…. “how does this happen?? How does a competent woman allow someone like this to enter her life?? No judgement, sis…you gotta look onto this with compassion and wonder where in your inner world YOU need a tune up. We all do!! That’s how bozos like this do not EVER look enticing. On the topic of injured instinct, your reading companion: Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes
Therapist, writer and researcher Pat Allen once said to me “I’ll be the Mother Man of your dreams”. It was because I was seeking her help for dysfunctional dating and an unfulfllling personal life. Today’s podcast is my experience of this deep, life altering Jungian concept. Those who need it will understand…and it will be like watering a plant..you’ll feel how nourishing it can be to mentally and spiritually wake up and face what is in your way so you can feel free to follow your heart’s desires.
It just is. It’s not a thing coming to save you. It’s a trip. You gotta get up, plan, open up, show up, try, change, explore, forgive, accept. And if you can……it’s awesome.
That’s what this episode is about.
What if, after years and years of marriage and two kids, your husband came to you to let you know he is bisexual? What does that mean for the union? Why is this necessary for me to know? Is it because you want to take new actions toward this new realization? Can I accept that? These are some of the questions I explored with an SB Listener who is in the middle of a life storm, and handling it by asking rational and fair questions, utilizing self care, and keeping the faith in a process of using crisis to grow.
I ran into my neighbor in town and had a very interesting conversation with her about her new experiences as an activist dedicated to empowering women on campus at college in the midwest. She was in shock about general attitudes about sex and personal empowerment and I was in shock that they are still in place like they were when I was in college. We decided to continue the conversation on the podcast, and I got to test my beliefs about inner energies with the daughter of a same sex couple. Enjoy!
When I was writing the quiz on masculine and feminine energies for the website, I made an appointment with Interact for IT on getting it up on www.somethingbetterpodcast.com and happened to get the creator of the company on the line, Josh. We had an interesting talk about human potential, his being single, and he agreed to an interview. I was surprised and encouraged by the central theme of what he had to say...and am glad to share with my listeners a single guy who is interested in a spiritual connection and lasting love!
Actor/Writer/Producer Courtney Rackley is the creator and star of two Amazon series’ “Firsts” and “Dealbreakers”. Her take on creative process, allowing for feelings, letting go of results, and trusting God but “acting as if there isn’t one” (because she is so prolific and forthright in her efforts) will undoubtedly inspire you. She was just back from an inspiring journey to Bali and shares about the spiritual ways that are built into the culture.
The last person you talked to? Your in-laws? Your past? Or do you belong to your Creator? Maybe you feel a sense of belonging through a church, temple or meditation community, maybe you feel you belong to God but leave the “o” out when you write that, out of reverence. Maybe you sense you belong to Buddha, or Christ. The science of mind idea that I teach is a sense of belonging with yourself, fueled by a Higher Power or Source energy that you understand and feel content to trust. I felt validated when I finished Brene Brown’s book on the topic and recorded this shortly afterwards to reinforce what I had learned, and to encourage you to ask this of yourself.
If you were dealing with the overwhelming physical and emotional experience of becoming a mother, struggling with imbalances, and uninterested in sex, would you allow your husband to find a sexual partner on Tinder to meet his needs? My listener did that…and now she is struggling to accept the consequences of her choice, while navigating rational communication and negotiation around it.
In this episode I go into my experience opening up to spiritual solutions as I entered a constant conversation with the Universe, (or Source as you understand it, whatever you call it...) I believe it communicates back! I highly recommend you try it. As you nurture your awareness and consciousness around masculine and feminine energies, you’ll get in tune to receiving messages and signs. Check instagram for more info on OK2BKRZ story, and other stories from communicating with the great beyond, plus a “homework” assignment...
PS On the intro: My elementary school nieces visited my studio lat summer and weighed in briefly on their experience of their feminine energy-that’s who you hear in the beginning. I thought it may inspire.
The Something Better Quiz is finally here! I curated the collection from questions I heard the most after a year of podcasting, and created a quiz based on the areas where it is most common to act in contradiction to chosen energy. So if you feel stumped as to your “score” definitely download the answer key which will go into depth about the questions.
You can always write me directly for more information as well! email@example.com
My definition of prosperity is attracting and joyfully experiencing the fulfillment that is meant for you. I believe judgement and gossip is a block to that prosperity, and this episode is an exploration of the feminine principle of internal reflection on judgement and becoming your own witness to tendencies that keep you from attracting your heart’s desires. If you’re developing a deeper connection to your feminine energy, remember that just by listening, you’re doing just that!
UPLIFTING GOSSIP by Rob Brezsney
I imagine the possibility of helping to establish a tradition of uplifting
gossip, full of praise and gratitude. What about, if instead of naming the
shadowy aspects of our friends and acquaintances behind their backs, we
identified, celebrated, and propitiated their divine glory and shining
I’m way more interested in being human than I am in being spiritual, and as a result…I find myself experiencing life from a much more spiritual perspective, with a lot more compassion and patience.
Here is the passage that inspired this podcast:
"Lama Surya Das, the "Buddha from Brooklyn," is one of the handful of
Westerners who have been teaching meditation for decades. And yet, he
says we're doing it wrong.
Lama Surya Das says there are other ways to meditate besides those that
are currently popular: "So many people seem to be moving narcissistically
into self-centered happiness-seeking and quietism, not to mention the use
of mindfulness for mere effectiveness," he says. "True meditation
generates wisdom and compassion, which may be very disquieting, at
least in the short term."
"'Quiet your mind' or 'calm and clear your mind' are instructions I hear
way too much," he says. "Some teachers actually encourage people to try
to stop thinking, when in fact meditative awareness means being mindful
of thoughts and feelings, not simply trying to reduce, alter or white them
out and achieve some kind of oblivion."
"The anti-intellectual meditators, thought-swatters and imagination-
suppressors have long ruled meditation-oriented circles in the West," he
says. "But authentic meditative practices can enhance and even unleash
the creativity and imagination.'
You don't have to quiet the mind to do many of the types of meditation
he proposes. They don't involve trying to find a quiet 'moment of Zen'
apart from the messy, noisy world of work, family and children, but rather
inviting all of the noise into meditation.
My first guest of season 2, author Johanna Siegmann, has brilliantly illustrated the concepts of the podcast through her book on a very personal experience of the Tango. This blog message is going to be short: YOU MUST hear this episode and you MUST READ THIS BOOK!!! It brilliantly illuminates all that I cover on this podcast.
Today's episode is the last one of season 1, and next week marks the beginning of Season 2. I can't believe it! I am really grateful to all of the listeners, all of the women and men who stepped forward to email me, and especially those who entered into coaching. It has been a privilege. I hope that you have deepened a connection to your own spirituality. There's a joke, "even an atheist is a believer when the toilet gets clogged at a dinner party given by his boss". That's a hilarious way to explain the curiosity I have about life, that will continue on into Season 2. The curiosity is, no matter how much you develop your ability to have control over your life events through personal growth, visualization, setting and reaching goals, etc...what is your surrender point? Doesn't everyone have one? We all have blind spots that can only be uncovered through spiritual surrender. I'm interested in creating a community of consciousness where we have the safety and freedom of exploring them together, with the use of tools for rational communication and awareness of masculine and feminine energies.
Season 2 will be full of more inspiring interviews, continuing information on consciousness, masculine and feminine energies, daily life spiritual solutions, and maybe even some live SB events!
This is just the beginning!
My friend Ronnie is a surrendered wife and an empowered woman. She was a top model, she ran a modeling agency, she's a life coach and advocate for youth in her quest to end bullying, and she's been happily married for 39 years. She is such a no nonsense voice of common sense, self love and self esteem in my life. I am so grateful to share my friend with Something Better listeners.