Category Archives: Conscious Community

How do you craft the conscious community that you want to be a part of? How do you connect with great people, join a mastermind group, and build a brain trust to elevate your work further? Join me in studying how to connect deeply with others, build trust, make friends (as adults!) and find peers who resonate deeply with you.

One Hiring Mistake I See New Entrepreneurs Make All The Time

People ask me all the time how I did the swim from Alcatraz. One of the most important factors, aside from the cold temperatures (49 to 58 degrees Fahrenheit), is the matter of the tides. The power of the ocean is tremendous. The fastest swimmer in the world, a sprinter, clocks in at about  5.2 miles per hour, and this is only for a short sprint: a 50 meter dash.

In the ocean, however, humans can’t sustain speeds of greater than 3 miles per hour for extended periods of time, and the tides can reach up to 8 knots (or about 9.2 miles per hour).

Even if you swim like crazy, if you’re moving against a strong tide, you’re screwed. You must plan accordingly.

In life, culture — the expectations, processes, and systems that surround us — is much like a tide. Without even being aware of it, we’re constantly immersed in tides that take us in a direction if we’re not paying attention.

This is why diversity initiatives are important. It’s not enough to believe that diversity is important; if you’re not watching how decisions get made, and the processes you put in place, you’re in danger of ending up far from where you intended to go.

I see this happen all the time with podcasters. “I’ll start a podcast and interview people I know,” someone says. Twenty episodes in, and they realize that they’ve accidentally interviewed people that look identical—all one gender, all one race.

Did they do it on purpose? Of course not. Most people don’t mean to. We don’t set out to say “Hey look, I think I’ll create the most biased podcast out there and only interview people that look like me.” That’s not typically in our project and business plans.

But when we don’t pay attention, and we just pick the next person based on who we know, and the next person based on who they know, we often end up with a population that can be way too homogenous.

The same happens in the culture of an office. In the early days you might have two co-founders, both men (for example), and they each hire one more person. They hire someone based on their networks, without realizing that the networks they’ve built might be 80% men. Then they hire a few more people.

Whoops, you’re a 10-person team that doesn’t have any women or multi-cultural perspectives.

The challenge here is that it gets even harder to change the tide once it’s implemented and rolling. Once you have 20 out of 20 people on your podcast that look the same, it’s not going to work to add one diverse data point and carry on the same way. You’ll have to work even harder to move the averages back to something you’re comfortable with.

Biases are like tides. They carry us in a certain direction if we’re not paying attention.

And there is no vacuum where they don’t exist. Bodies of water, like culture, are influenced by the world around them, whether the pull of the moon’s gravity or the influx at the source.

It matters that we pay attention from the beginning. We all need to periodically check-in to see if what we’re building reflects the world that we want to see.

And if you find yourself miles down the beach from where you intended to go, it’s okay to realize you have a little more hiking to do than you expected.

How to Give Great Advice (and Why Most Advice Doesn’t Work)

It’s fun to brainstorm, to be clever, to solve things. But sometimes other people don’t need us to solve their problem, offer advice, or jump in with the perfect story. Sometimes they just need us to listen. Listening isn’t being quiet: it’s an active process. And it takes work to listen well. Here are a few strategies for being better at giving advice (without giving advice).Read the article

Start Sooner: How One Conference Kickstarted My Blog, My Business, and My Freedom

More than any course, metric, skill, or tactic, the people you surround yourself will make the biggest difference in your life and career. Conferences can be transformative experiences. When you bring people together in one place, for one weekend, to celebrate, to learn, and to connect, you leave changed.Read the article

Want More Connection?

I have a friend who seems to run into people he knows everywhere he goes. He seems like the most connected person I know. I laughed and asked him how he does it. Here’s what he shared with me.Read the article

The Introvert’s Guide to Networking at a Conference

My friend was recently excited about a conference but terrified of going and getting overwhelmed. He texted me: “Help! do you have any good networking advice for introverts at conferences?”  Conferences are a great way to meet people, and it’s one of the best ways I’ve used to reach out to new people, connect withRead the article

Humor, Comedy, and Laughter: How To Tell A Great Joke (And When It’s Not Funny)

I always cringe when someone tells a joke and it’s a joke that’s at someone else’s expense. Making fun of people isn’t great comedy. It’s cruelty disguised as humor. “Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.” — Eleanor Roosevelt. But how do you know? What’s the difference between edgy in yourRead the article

What Questions Are You Asking? (Three Questions For Reconnection)

We are the questions we ask. We are the way we inquire, curiously, about the world we work in. As I was going through what was (for me), a difficult pregnancy, I looked to my partner and asked, time and time again: “How do I make it through this?”  It’s hard to believe now, butRead the article

How Do You Feel Before, During, and After?

Today I want to share with you about a way to connect inwardly, with yourself.  But first, a quick story. I work with coaches. A lot of coaches. I’ve worked with college coaches, swim coaches, book coaches, life coaches… you name it, I like doing it.  One of my most recent coaches has worked with me onRead the article

Send a Friend a Love Letter

I have the bad habit of hiding and holing myself away for a while. It’s when I’m deep in writing, processing, or thinking. I get a bit estranged from the connectivity of it all. When I emerge, I begin to remember things that I used to do, that I’ve forgotten. A quick sniff of myRead the article

How to Know When You’re Communicating Well

Communication is one of the most challenging aspects of leadership. Often I see young leaders and CEOs (myself included) getting frustrated because they said or emailed something once, and it’s not sticking. Communication is often about repeating yourself. You need to explain yourself, explain it again, return to the idea at the end of theRead the article